The report that Bill Daley may be named Obama’s chief-of-staff leads to the expectation that the Obama administration could be more conciliatory to the new Congress—which has a Republican House and a sharply reduced Democratic majority in the Senate. I don’t like it. Working acceptable agreements is one thing—but with Daley there always comes the entreaties to snuggle up, “compromise to get things done.” Sounds good but coming from Bill Daley it usually means selling out principle.
I remember the last time Bill Daley was in the news—in Florida with the long recount between Gore and “W.” Daley, campaign manager for Gore, undertook to explain to the media the necessity of examining hanging chads that threatened honest voter intent. It sounded good until Cheney said “what the hell—we’re being instructed on the ideal of honest vote counting by the son of old Boss Daley?”
Daley is a lot like Dickie Darman whom I met often…starting with the Nixon administration and later Ford when he and his mentor Jim Baker were ensconced in the Commerce Department. From then on the chameleon wriggled up and up, sucking his way this way and that through the Reagan White House and into the GHW Bush Oval Office.
Once there, Dickie Darman convinced the old man to sell out his “read my lips: no new taxes” pledge which the senior Bush later said was the worst mistake of his life. Although a mystery to the end the old guy kept on maintaining Darman was a close friend. Close friend my eye.
Dickie Darman’s not with us anymore, having gone to a place where the Just Judge weighs different assets than maneuvering.
I say watch Bill Daley. Slippery as a wet eel.
Wild Card Carol.
I hope this time the liberal media will not allow Carol Moseley Braun to play them like an ocarina using race and feminism as bait. Equipped with a 50,000-watt smile she has all the chaotic masterly inattention to detail and principle to turn Chicago into another Detroit in one term as mayor whereas it took Coleman Young eleven years to do the same.
A true demagogue she promised yesterday to break the parking meter contract. When reminded of the stiff financial penalties it would cost the city, she retreated. And a masterpiece of reasoning, she said she won’t release her tax returns until after she’s elected. Why? Because, she said, I don’t want to!
I hope the media will get over its love affair with her that began in the Recorder of Deeds office and continued beyond her Senate election. She has an unique ability to generate sympathy for the most undeserving people. No one in my memory has felt sympathy for Neil Steinberg until she started in on him. This obnoxious little strutter will probably get a raise now that she has called him a drunk and wife-beater. He was both but if she keeps it up she’ll make this guy an object of pity so that we’ll never hear the end of it from him. Early in my Minnesota years I treasured the story of Governor Floyd B. Olson, a rascally demagogue and the first governor elected on the Farmer-Labor ticket.
Floyd had long tussles with Demon Rum but it came to a head at a widely attended Town Hall. A lady raised her hand, was recognized, stood up and said: Governor Olson, I want to change the subject now. It is my understanding that you drink yourself into insensibility every night! How do you expect us to vote for you with habits like that?
A hush of embarrassed silence. Then the governor said:
Ma’am I don’t know about you but I am an often failed, faltering Christian, fighting, then falling but getting up again. Jesus Christ has called me to His side and I intend to do that—continuing to fight with my temptations every single day and night. And I will just say this—if you can’t vote for me due to my human frailties, do me a favor and just pray for me!
When the papers carried the story, he won by a landslide—so strongly that he was mentioned as a third party rival to Franklin Roosevelt. Huey was flirting with running against FDR for the Dem nomination in 1936. Roosevelt knew he could beat Huey and wasn’t a bit afraid—but he was concerned about Olson depriving him of victory by running 3rd party as a Farmer-Laborite, a powerful combination during the Depression.
Roosevelt breathed a little easier when Long was assassinated but then Long had never been a threat. However he breathed a whole lot easier when Floyd Olson checked into Mayo for a purported ulcer operation and then died under the knife after a 4-hour surgery for newly discovered extensive stomach cancer….dying a legend at age 44.