Lingua publica

The good and the bad...

web posted September 25, 2000

"Have we as a people been so dumbed down we can't see it? Well, this is what happens, I'm afraid, in a postmodern culture where all values are equivalent and all truth is relative. One moment the President browbeats Congress to pass a trade bill with China. Forget Christians being persecuted. The same day the same President moments later angrily demands sanctions against Japan for hunting whales. There are no principles, just momentary preferences, and everything depends on what's to be gained by those in positions of power. ...[W]hat's good enough for whales ought to be good enough for persecuted Christians." -- Charles Colson

"Some people don't mind a little constitutional sophistry in a good cause; and for liberals, centralizing all power in the federal government is always a good cause. Since most Americans don't know or care what the Constitution says, let alone what their ancestors thought it meant, the great liberal snow job has been very successful." -- Joseph Sobran

"The most recent crusades for gun control seem to have fizzled, and that's just as well, not only for the sake of the freedom and safety of most Americans, but also for the public reputations of those who push the banning of firearms. There is an ever-increasing amount of evidence that gun control is a failure, not only in the United States but in other countries, too." -- Sam Francis

"The Constitution of the United States was not created as an empty shell, to be filled with the content du jour, a receptacle of the baggage people carry as they arrive from mostly failed societies. The Constitution was erected as an umbrella under which people from every direction of the wind may be safe, enjoy opportunity, and benefit by that exceptional generation of men who applied the best of their knowledge, wisdom and instinct -- in that order -- to make available the blessings of liberty to all." -- Balint Vazsonyi

"Even as Al Gore was delivering an ultimatum to the entertainment industry to clean up its violence act, he was cashing in on music and movie glam power in a trio of huge star-stuffed fund-raisers this week." -- Chicago Tribune

"As Bush economic adviser Lawrence Lindsey told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, if Gore were in charge, only a small number of people would be deemed worthy of tax relief. 'In our plan, you don't have to do anything. You get a tax cut because you work.' That is Gore's idea of 'risky.' It isn't 'risky' for him to suggest so many spending programs that he's already outspent the projected surplus. It isn't 'risky' for him to say he's going to increase spending, reduce taxes for the deserving and still pay down the debt -- when it's mathematically impossible." -- Debra J. Saunders

"A conservative party that reshapes its self-presentation according to the suggestions of the liberal media, of course, may very well get what such lack of courage deserves. Having been told by their opponents for years that the key to Republican victory was a softening of the message and more smiles, Republicans have now apparently taken a big dose of this medicine. One might counsel more caution in accepting medicine from one's enemies." -- Alan Keyes

"The first conclusion to be drawn from all this is that the cover-up worked. The Clintons and their lawyers established an ethos of stonewalls, shady statements, slick lawyering, witness intimidation, and rhetorical assaults on public servants. The key players either kept quiet or were completely discredited by a brutal White House attack machine. ... The result was a series of investigations yielding evidence 'insufficient to prove to a jury beyond a reasonable doubt.' This is not to say no evidence." -- Wall Street Journal of Robert Ray's announcement that no charges would be laid against the Clintons over the Whitewater scandal

"Clinton is campaigning for Al Gore...and Clinton says that Al Gore was involved in everything this administration did. I'm no legal expert, but I believe the term for that is 'accessory'." -- David Letterman

"Being liberal means never having to acknowledge limits. You just have to keep saying your motives are higher than your opponents'." -- Joseph Sobran

"In U.S. politics, 'compassion' means giving money and privileges to well organized interest groups at everyone else's expense." -- Paul Craig Roberts

"What a ridiculous waste. What a legacy for an Arkansas boy with a modest background who made it to the most powerful office in the world. It's not only ridiculous, it's pathetic." -- Bill O'Reilly

"The real evil...was their acceptance of the principle that the end justifies the means. This is how most human beings...are introduced to evil. They are not pushed into evil by a strong desire to do wicked things, but by people who persuade them that evil is necessary to achieve some greater good, and that the good justifies the evil." -- Alan Keyes

"...[P]eople who run presidential campaigns know everything and cannot be bothered by listening to individuals who just might know something." -- Lyn Nofziger on the mistakes the Bush campaign has made

"How delicious it has been to see Vice President Al Gore trash the entertainment industry for 'false and deceptive advertising.' Bill Bradley must have busted a gut laughing over that line." -- Debra Saunders

"George W. is one thing, but as long as the Republican Party -- you noted some of them -- is populated by the Pat Buchanans...the Bob Barrs, don't blacks have a right to be suspicious?" -- CBS's Bryant Gumball

"Clinton's lawyer, David Kendall, had to tell Hillary about Bill's affair with Monica. That was a tough call -- neither Bill Clinton nor Dave Kendall tells the truth." -- Jay Leno

web posted September 18, 2000

"...[T]he Constitution conferred only a few specific powers on the federal government, all others being denied to it (as the Tenth Amendment would make plain). Unfortunately, only a tiny fraction of the U.S. population today -- subtle logicians like you -- can grasp such nuances. Too bad. The Constitution wasn't meant to be a brain-twister." -- Joseph Sobran

"While we have long found much to admire in Gov. Bush's program, we have always questioned the wisdom of making 'compassionate conservatism' the theme of his campaign. Its chief defect is that it does not provide a compelling reason for voters to make him president. His campaign has instead proceeded as though voters already wanted him to be president and its task were to prevent them from changing their minds. ... Whether he likes it or not, the strongest arguments against Gore are not based on Bush's superior character or style; they are conservative arguments against Gore's program." -- National Review

"Communism and socialism is seductive. It promises us that people will contribute according to ability and receive according to needs. Everybody is equal. Everybody has a right to decent housing, decent food and affordable medical care. History should have taught us that when we hear people talk this stuff -- watch out!" -- Walter Williams

"[Affluence] is changing the nation's political sensibility, reducing to the vanishing point the once-sturdy concern for limited government. .. Congress is complicit in all this because Congress could stop it. Until it does, we will have more of what [Christopher DeMuth of the American Enterprise Institute] calls 'strip mall socialism,' sprawling government, ubiquitous and undistinguished, with 'no theme or theory, just momentum'." -- George Will

"We must elect people to these offices who will defend our liberties, defend the integrity of the Constitution, and take on the full responsibilities they are supposed to exercise as the stewards of that Constitution. I believe that both president and Congress, in recent decades, have failed us in this regard. And in doing so they have unleashed a judicial tyranny that is destroying the soundness, moral and otherwise, of our land." -- Alan Keyes

"Bill Clinton says that the budget surplus cannot be used to reduce taxes because it would 'cost' too much. Just what does that mean? The very idea of government 'costs' is strange. Since government does not generate wealth, but simply spends wealth generated by the people, the only costs being borne are those costs borne by the public." -- Thomas Sowell

"If I'm entrusted with the presidency, I am going to do something about this." -- Al Gore saying he would give entertainment industry bosses six months to "clean up their act" or risk government sanctions

"Al Gore is telling Hollywood to clean up its act after aggressively cleaning out their wallets for the past year. Al Gore waving around a report that he denounced at a Hollywood fund-raiser just a year ago makes him a deserving candidate for an Oscar award in hypocrisy." -- Bush campaign spokesman Dan Bartlett

"[Gore] should say, 'Look, this [visit to a Buddhist temple] is no different from people visiting the black churches or any churches or a Jewish temple. There's nothing wrong.' He shouldn't feel embarrassed or ashamed of relating to the temple. He should feel very proud of himself." -- Gore fund-raiser Maria Hsia, convicted of five felony counts for lying about the major donations Gore picked up while at the temple

"So Al Gore is threatening government sanctions against the entertainment industry for marketing violence to kids. That's chilling. That's cynical. That's brilliant." -- Rod Dreher

"We [Americans] must disbar you to tell the world that a man's word still means something in America, even if he is the president." -- John N. Doggett

"A dramatic -- and complex -- transformation in the role of government is taking place. Government's role in the daily lives of most Americans has expanded dramatically since the 1960s." -- Linda Chavez

"[Gore] has talked a lot about the need for specificity and detail, but apparently he didn't mean it to apply to his own tax plan." -- House Ways and Means Chairman Bill Archer

"Lieberman substituted Gore values for core values." -- Toward Tradition, a national Jewish public policy group

"Abstract language avoids creating unpleasant mental images that might cause horror and shame; concrete language may remind us of what we are really doing. " -- Joseph Sobran

"Why doesn't Bush have more to fall back on? I think we all know the answer. He and his team call it compassionate conservatism, which on closer inspection is nothing more than conservatism lite or a conservatism that dares not speak its name or conservatism repackaged in a kinder, gentler wrapping -- in short, a conservatism that caves under the first sign of pressure." -- Wladyslaw Pleszczynsk

"The most striking aspect of the hour-long 'Oprah' interview was how Gore revealed himself as the perfect political representation of the Oprah era -- how his rhetoric and thinking are a perfect fit with the preachy, relentlessly positive New Age-speak that Winfrey has spent her career popularizing. ... 'We are spiritual beings having a human experience,' Gore said as he attempted to explain how he believes the greatest challenge facing America is a quest to find greater meaning in life. ... The scary part is that Gore really means it." -- John Podhoretz

"Lazio kicked it out of the park. He had Hillary dumbfounded on several occasions. Walked across the stage, invading her 'personal space' and handed her a petition to disavow all soft money. Dared her to sign it. She didn't, of course. Asked by Russert at the end, if she had a life line call, who would it be? She twinkled and said, 'You, Tim.' Lazio said, very quietly, 'My wife'." -- Lucianne Goldberg on the Rick Lazio-Hillary Clinton debate

"There was no handshake." -- White House spokesman Joe Lockhart denying that Bill Clinton and Fidel Castro shook hands at the Millennium Summit

"That's a personal shot. While [Mr. Wellstone] was doing real college wrestling, I was serving in the real United States military." -- Gov. Jesse Ventura, a former Navy SEAL, after Minnesota Demo Sen. Paul Wellstone compared his own college wrestling days to Ventura's "professional wrestling" career

"...[I]f Gore is elected Lieberman will be the first Jew to work under a president since Monica Lewinsky." -- Lyn Nofziger

"Al Gore has been accused of drawing up campaign plans and stands on issues through polling data in order to get more votes. Gore said that was outrageous and 73.8 percent of Americans think that too." -- Jay Leno

"Al Gore appeared on "Oprah" yesterday. Hey, Al, you go, girl! He told Oprah his favorite food was Chinese. That's also his favorite type of campaign funding." -- David Letterman

web posted September 11, 2000

"In addition to the Security Council, we must have an Economic Council and an Environmental Council with authority equal to that of the Security Council." -- Mikhail Gorbachev

"There's Adam Clymer, major league @$$#*!! from the New York Times." -- George Bush to Dick Cheney, unaware his comment was captured by an open microphone

"I'm disappointed in the governor's language." -- Adam Clymer's reponse to that comment. Clyner himself was charged by U.S. Capitol Police recently for acting in a "loud, profane and abusive manner" with four of its officers in the Capital Building. Officer Daniel Quigley penned in the complaint against Clymer: "His using profanity in a crowded area was unnecessary, and he does not have any right to make physical contact, or place his hands on any officer who is performing his duties in an official capacity."

"We will under-spend the surplus." -- Al Gore

"The fact is that we have reached such a low level of funding it will soon be impossible to meet the expectations of this nation in executing our operational tasks and completing the mission." -- Vice Admiral John Nathman after assuming command of the U.S. Naval Air Forces in the Pacific

"...[T]he politically correct culture-warriors, while decrying their opponents' supposed intolerance, exhibit the most stifling kind of intolerance imaginable -- and more. They don't merely demand to be tolerated. They insist that their views be crammed down our throats. Make no mistake. The culture war is raging. I just hope that the voices of sanity don't surrender without firing a shot." -- David Limbaugh

"Never has a class been so abused by a political party as the working class has been by Democrats." -- Paul Craig Roberts

"Let the Millennium Summit be the last hurrah for the United Nations. End it. End it now. The voices call out to us from millions of graves. We are the last great hope of democracy in the world." -- Alan Caruba

"When seniors add up how much they have to pay to get their drugs, they'll realize the benefit of the Gore plan is just 13 cents a day." -- Sen. Bill Frist, M.D.

"...[I]t means something different to be called a 'Boy Scout' than to be called a 'lawyer'." -- Ann Coulter

"Our national problems usually do not cause nearly as much harm as the solutions." -- Thomas Sowell

"When the public no longer cares about real news it signals a civic apathy that is profoundly disturbing for its implications." -- Brent Bozell

"Even in a disbarment proceeding premised on the president's prodigious lies, he lies." -- Ann Coulter

"...[T]he ruling elite can rest easy at night, knowing that the sleep of the masses will not be disturbed by those nasty, perverted freedom lovers." -- Gene Callahan

"We should have the courage to embrace the agenda of tax liberty, confident in the fruits it will bear for the whole society, just as our Founders moved courageously to make political liberty a reality." -- Alan Keyes

"Attorneys are exploiting tort law to get rich on tobacco and asbestos cash. They're turning those riches into political power that in turn makes it easier to loot another private industry." -- Wall Street Journal

"Let's face it: Bush's campaign has been sagging lately. He has been on the defensive since Gore picked Lieberman and then de-coupled himself from Clinton." -- John LeBoutillier

"Why are George W. Bush's handlers so reluctant to allow him to debate three times in prime-time television, on all major networks, according to the usual rules -- the way presidential candidates usually do?" -- Rip Rense

"George W. Bush's campaign aides openl y acknowledge that Al Gore is a formidable debater who deserves to be heavily favored in any one-on-one meeting with their candidate. Maybe they're right. The debates haven't even been held, and Bush is already losing them." -- Steve Chapman

"...[I]s this symptomatic of a campaign, such as Barry Goldwater's in 1964, which had the nomination strategy all worked out but the general election strategy was still being worked on as the ballots were being printed. All those wagging heads sure wish they knew." -- Paul M. Weyrich

"George W. Bush is starting to look like the last Republican presidential candidate to be nominated in Philadelphia, Thomas E. Dewey. ... Like Bush today, Dewey in 1948 was the popular two-term governor of a big state.... But Dewey sat on his lead, refusing to alter his smug course...." -- James Pinkerton

"We were 10-12 twelve points up, we're now three points down, it's the end of the third quarter, you gotta get back on offense. I still believe George Bush is going to win. He's a better man -- a far better man. He's got a better and bolder plan. But, they have to step up, I think, on the issues -- draw the differences in a sharp way." -- William Bennett

"Gloria Steinem's marriage is proof positive of the emotional desperation of aging feminists who for over 30 years worshiped the steely career woman and callously trashed stay-at-home moms." -- Camille Paglia on the titular head of the modern feminist movement, who once said "a woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle."

"Don't quit your day job." -- Detroit Tigers batting coach Bill Madlock, after Al Gore was beaned by a pitch he threw to Robert Fick

"You know people vote for my books with their money, as opposed to saying yes when the Gallup poll calls them up on the phone." -- Tom Clancy, when confronted by media leftist Matt Lauer, "You think you're in step with the feelings of this country [when] long stretches [ of "The Bear and The Dragon"] reads like the transcript of a Rush Limbaugh talkathon?"

"It surely must come as a jolt to most Americans that there'll be a presidential election in just 60 days particularly since the country has been without a president for the past two years or so." --Tony Kornheiser

"A leading world model agency was broken into this weekend. A bunch of photos, names and addresses and phone numbers were stolen. Much like Watergate, I hear this scandal may be linked to the White House." -- Conan O'Brien

web posted September 4, 2000

"We've seen virtually no change in society's glorification of death and violence. As long as the cultural elite [media moguls] can keep our nation focused on a red herring like gun control, they relieve parents from the responsibility of healing empty hearts, wounded spirits, and the numbed consciences that lie behind these senseless acts of violence. If anything, we've witnessed a rise in the barrage of dark, hopeless and annihilative images and words churned out by TV, movies, music, Internet Web sites, and video games." -- Dr. James C. Dobson

"This is an opportunity that Oxford would be ill-advised to squander. It is not merely the status of a departed U.S. President that should appeal to the dons, but also the sheer number of courses where Mr. Clinton might be useful. He would need to lecture on American politics but the university should really exploit the full range of his experience. A man who once informed a Grand Jury that whether or not he had committed perjury depended on the meaning of the word 'is' would surely be the very saviour of any philosophy faculty. Mr. Clinton's intimate knowledge of the latest DNA testing techniques should be harnessed by the chemistry department. A new course on the technicalities of impeachment could work wonders for the Oxford law course. The gender studies sub-faculty would, though, be best appeased if the amount of hands-on student tuition offered by Mr. Clinton were kept to a minimum." -- Times of London on the possibility that Bill Clinton might join the Oxford teaching staff after leaving office

"The framers advocated two-, four-, and six-year terms of office so that the House, president, and Senate would learn, deliberate and lead, as well as be responsible to the people. It was the job of the citizen to remain vigilant, informed, and educated so his voice could be heard on Election Day and keep leaders in check. The problem of republican (small-r) government is the problem of education. When voters cannot answer basic questions about their government or the issues of the day, it is the duty of the media and elected officials to talk more about substantive issues to educate the electorate. Otherwise, voters will lack enough knowledge to make polls meaningful. And the inevitable conclusion will be that these meaningless numbers will be used to make bad laws." -- Matthew Robinson

"In the land of the undecideds, mere assertions pass for argument. Mr. Bush should learn this from Mr. Gore. He should start saying that he is for free health care and prescription drugs for everybody. That's what Mr. Gore said. Heck, everybody is for that. It won't happen. It can't happen. There's no such thing as a free lunch, let alone free drugs. But, Mr. Bush can still be for it. I'm for free Ferraris. Why not? Let them know we care." -- Tony Blankley

"The schools aren't going to improve. The teachers unions, obsessed with protecting their jobs, are absolutely in the saddle. With exceptions, but not enough exceptions, they don't like the whole idea of education, so they jaw-storm about feelings and attitudinal change and empowerment, whatever that is. We don't care enough to buck them. Still, in moments of fatuous optimism, I reflect that it could be done. If a few hundred parents showed up at school with a rope and a focused look, results might follow. In fact, when I'm dictator, I'm going to put a bounty on the National Education Association. Bag one and bring the varmint in stuffed, and you'll get a keg of Budweiser and three free nights of bowling. It would be like duck hunting, but more satisfying." -- Fred Reed

"In his convention appearance Gore recalled how hardships demanded self-reliance from his parents and made them an inspiration to him. Gore wowed his convention by vowing to banish forever all the sorts of challenging conditions that made his parents so inspiring." -- George Will

"We changed things, to help unleash your potential, and innovation and investment in the private sector, the engine that drives the economy." -- Al Gore, taking credit for America's strong economy

Bill Clinton is "a disgrace to the office...a disgrace to the United States. He's made the United States a laughingstock of the world.... I'm still a registered Democrat but from what I've seen on the national scene, I could never vote for a Democrat on the national level again until they clean up their act." -- David Schippers, the Democrat who led the House Judiciary Committee's investigation of Clinton and who voted for Clinton in 1992 and 1996

"In the three-year period since the time I was assistant commandant to now, I have never seen a resource picture so bleak." -- Maj. General Tony Stricklin in an internal Pentagon assessment of the 20 Army combat and support training centers responsible for field artillery, infantry and aviation training, 12 of which received the Pentagon's lowest rating -- C-4

"The president is determined to get as much as he can done for the American people through executive action, as he has for the last eight years. We work with Congress. But just because they've ground to a halt doesn't mean the executive branch should." -- Clinton domestic policy adviser Bruce Reed

"America's progressives, liberals, humanitarians, and other self-satisfied poseurs have found a new group to outlaw, the Boy Scouts." -- Bob Tyrrell

"Political campaigns often seem part circus and part swindle." -- Robert J. Samuelson

"And in politics, a 'negative' influence is nothing more than an opponent, idea or law that a politician dislikes." -- Bruce Fein

"...[T]eachers' unions are going all-out to stop vouchers, because any competition threatens to expose both the public schools' failures and their excuses for failure." -- Thomas Sowell

"George Bush's two major pieces of legislation, the Civil Rights Act of 1991 and the Americans with Disabilities Act, both had some awful provisions that Republicans should have caught. But fear of appearing mean usually stampedes the party into supporting flawed social legislation." --John Leo

"Of course, the problem with the Clintons is not that all conspiracy theories about them are true, just that all conspiracy theories about them are possible." -- Jonah Goldberg

"There are few more potent combinations than lawyers and journalists. Together they can demonize, loot and even bankrupt the largest industry. And do so based on the flimsiest evidence." -- Doug Bandow

"Public corruptions create public cesspools, around which private people must step in their private lives. Slowly, ineluctably these cesspools begin to define and dominate existence. ...That the crude and obscene are as good as the righteous, honorable, upright and just -- my brothers and sisters, there isn't a word of truth in it." -- William Murchison

"Al Gore has given George W. Bush the greatest present any politician can receive: The gift of an opponent's hypocrisy." -- Tony Snow

"(Al Gore) reminds me a bit of Barbie's boyfriend, Ken: He's buff, he's honed, he looks terrific, but he has no private parts. I'm not referring to his distinguishing characteristics, but to a general lack of human personality. Clinton puts together a focus group to find out what he should do. Gore puts together a focus group to find out who he should be." -- Mark Steyn

"Gore has proposed a whole bunch of government spending programs run by the Internal Revenue Service...It adds up to about 500 billion in spending programs that would be run by IRS." -- Bob McIntyre, Citizens for Tax Justice

"I think I have given evidence that I need to be in church." -- Bill Clinton in an interview discussing his faith

"Men rule everywhere and in everything, so why should we care that boys do worse in high school?" -- University of Virginia law professor Amy Wax

"I don't know if I can live on my income or not -- the government won't let me try it." -- Bob Thaves, in the comic strip "Frank & Ernest"

"I am perfectly sane." -- Ezola Foster, Pat Buchanan's Reform Party running mate, on news that she accepted workers' compensation payments for an undisclosed mental disorder

"I'm a liberal, conservative, radical, middle-of-the-road, centrist Democrat." -- actor Richard Dreyfuss explaining his political philosophy

"I'll be that old lovable rogue who can make a centrist waffle look like red meat." -- William Safire imagining what really went through Bill Clinton's mind in his Demo-confab address

"The Republicans have accused the Democrats of wasting the past eight years, eight years of missed opportunities. I don't think so. I don't think Clinton missed anybody in those eight years." -- Jay Leno

"Polls show Al Gore out in front. Gore has become so confident that he is now raising campaign funds legally!" -- David Letterman

web posted August 28, 2000

"The idea that there is no such thing as truth has gotten very fashionable in some quarters. It is now called 'my truth' or 'your truth' or somebody else's truth. But truth loses its meaning if it becomes private property. The whole point of truth is that it enables one person to rely on what someone else says. Behind all this evasion of reality is the simple fact that some people have constructed a vision of the world in their mind which differs greatly from the real world. And they cannot bring themselves to give up that vision. Nor will they allow others to shatter their vision with facts. The real question is: Why do we take them seriously? Are we so easily impressed or intimidated by their airs of superiority?" -- Thomas Sowell

"You know that story about the youngster who discovers money on a bus and knocks himself out to return it to its rightful owner? The same instinctive decency ought to apply to Washington. Today's gusher exists mainly because the 'irresponsible' Reagan tax cuts redressed the disincentive effects of the old tax structure. We have surpluses because Americans are harder-working and more productive, not because the politicians have become more frugal. Washington's periodic attempts to jack up the wage tax have been a particular disgrace. With the world at peace, the economy humming and the debt already on a path to extinction, Republicans shouldn't be conspiring with Democrats to keep the surpluses in Washington. If that's the plan, why don't they just call themselves Democrats?" -- Wall Street Journal

"Manufacturers have no duty to give warnings about the obvious dangers of handguns. Were we to decide otherwise, we would open a Pandora's box. The city could sue the manufacturers of matches for arson, or automobile manufacturers for traffic accidents, or breweries for drunken driving." -- Ohio's First District Court of Appeals in ruling that Cincinnati has no legal standing to recover an enormous cash windfall from gunmakers because of crimes committed with the guns they manufacture

"If the public doesn't want a populist or a phony, it probably doesn't want a phony populist." -- Wall Street Journal

"Al Gore's sea of promises without priorities provided a summary of the squandered opportunities during the last eight years, underscoring why there is a leadership gap in this campaign." -- Dan Bartlett

"[Gore's speech was] relentlessly banal and formulaic. ... If this is who Mr. Gore is, he's a loser." -- Peggy Noonan

"The only thing Gore could have done to annoy the Jesse Jackson-Al Sharpton wing of the Democratic Party more than putting Lieberman on his ticket would have been to pick a Korean as his running mate." -- Ann Coulter

"Is it really the case that messianic narcissism is OK by the American people? The Gore Experience will test the question." -- Bill Buckley

"With Powell and Rice, their blackness is incidental to their history of accomplishment. By contrast, the people that you saw in Los Angeles -- the quote, unquote, diverse folks you saw parading across the stage in Los Angeles -- are typically people who have punched the card of racial grievance. That's the difference between Gore's vision of diversity and Bush's." -- Center for New Black Leadership's Brian Jones

"Some have suggested that Democrats have no central rallying theme this year. I have a suggestion: 'Prosperity without a Clue'." -- David Limbaugh

"When Republicans abandon their conservative/libertarian bloc of voters, they don't expand their base, it evaporates. The political graveyard is full of contemporary examples. Gerald Ford. George Bush. Bob Dole. The Republicans in Congress in 1998." -- Stephen Moore

"It was completely spontaneous. I think you can tell from watching it, it was completely spontaneous. I didn't plan that out in advance." -- Al Gore on his kiss with Tipper Gore just before his acceptance speech

"If I was the parent of a child who went to an inner-city school that was failing...I might be for vouchers, too." -- Al Gore, accidentally being honest

"[Al Gore claims] 'Actually, I did not wind up becoming a lawyer. I wound up becoming a newspaper reporter.' Actually, Gore left being a full-time newspaper reporter to go to law school, and then left law school to run for Congress. This is the kind of exaggeration he falls into when he's forcing his game, trying to ingratiate himself in a way that obviously isn't real -- the kind that, if anybody catches him at it, can be presented as one of his 'lies'." -- a Gore profile by Nicholas Lemann in The New Yorker

"You don't have to be a cynic to note that this has all the earmarks of a carefully orchestrated, politically motivated leak. The Republican-backed Robert Ray is sponsored by a three-judge panel. ... This panel features two federal judges backed by the [North Carolina Sen.] Jesse Helms wing of the Republican Party" -- Dan Rather, on the "Republican leak" about the federal grand jury convened by Independent Counsel Robert Ray to further investigate Clinton for perjury. The "inadvertent" leak came from one of the three judges who oversee the investigation -- Democrat Richard D. Cudahy, former chairman of the Wisconsin Democratic Party and a judicial appointee of Jimmy Carter. Judge Cudahy explained the unintentional disclosure "resulted solely" from his response to a press inquiry

"[My show is] a safe zone. We try...not to embarrass or humiliate, but try to celebrate people and their beliefs." --Rosie O'Donnell with Larry "King of the Talkingheads" after attacking her guest Tom Selleck for his defense of the Second Amendment

"Al Gore felt compelled to one-up his rival with 'Love Story, the Convention.' ... When Al joined Tipper on stage, he grabbed her for a long, intense kiss more suited for a third date than the fourth night of a convention." -- Maureen Dowd

"All week long, the Democrats have said they're for working families. Nouns are supposed to trump adjectives, but when a Democrat says 'working families,' it's hard not to believe the reverse is true." -- National Review Online

"One celebrity who was missing from the Democratic National Convention was Rosie O'Donnell. At one time, she was suggested as a participant to the show's producer, Gary Smith, but he passed. Apparently, he felt the convention's TV ratings were low enough without her." -- Ira Lawson

"I'm now going to reveal a dark little secret about Hollywood: It is run mostly by limousine liberals who are primarily concerned about political correctness." -- Hollywood director William Friedkin

"George W. Bush said today that if he is elected, he will spend $5 billion to teach kids to read by the third grade. Here in California, we already have a billion-dollar plan to teach third-grade reading. We call it the 12th grade." -- Jay Leno

"Chelsea Clinton announced that she is postponing her senior year at Stanford University until January so that she can stay with her father during his last few months in the White House. Isn't that nice? In return, the president offered to stay with Chelsea during her last few months in her sorority." -- Conan O'Brien

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