The Best of Notable Quotables; December 28, 1998

Vol. Eleven; No. 27

Damn Those Conservatives Award

“The stock market crashed in October 1987, another setback for Reagan. Black Monday raised doubts about the soundness of Reagan’s economic policies. On Reagan’s watch tax revenues would double, but they never kept up with spending. The national debt nearly tripled. Although most Americans benefited, the gap between the richest and poorest became a chasm. Donald Trump and the new billionaires of the 1980s recalled the extravagance of the captains of industry in the 1880s. There were losers. Cuts in social programs created a homeless population that grew to exceed that of Atlanta. AIDS became an epidemic in the 1980s, nearly 50,000 died. Reagan largely ignored it.”

– Narrator of PBS American Experience profile of Ronald Reagan, February 24. [63 points]


“I’ve got to know, Pat, why is this John Edwards/Lauch Faircloth race so important to the Republicans, other than the obvious that Senator Faircloth is considered to be one of the junior Grand Wizards of the vast right-wing conspiracy?”

– MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann to former Democratic pollster Pat Caddell, October 26 The Big Show. [49]
“I think Republicans are doing a rendition – remember that old Zero Mostel parody Springtime for Hitler? I think that’s what they’re doing. The moral charge against Bill Clinton is being led by Newt Gingrich, the only Speaker in history to be sanctioned for unethical conduct, the most unpopular political figure in America. Dan Burton, the committee chairman, now has, at least according to the Washington Times, has his staff wearing latex gloves because he says left-wingers are sending him condoms in the mail. His staff aide, Mr. Bossie, most reporters I know think was a duplicitous wacko.”

Wall Street Journal Executive Washington Editor Al Hunt, May 9 Capital Gang. [44]

“I’m happy about Fritz [Hollings]. He’s a crusty old coot, the kind you don’t really see in Congress any more. Faircloth is a sort of more recent edition. He’s a member of the hater branch of the North Carolina Republican Party, so good riddance to him.”

Newsweek Assistant Managing Editor Evan Thomas, November 7 Inside Washington. [43]
“Bill Bennett, Mr. Virtues, has said basically that Clinton is morally unfit to hold office. I’m sure Bill believes that, but this is the same Bill Bennett who has a close friend and goes on trips with Newt Gingrich, the Speaker of the House who’s been accused of some of the same sort of moral turpitude that the President’s been accused of....Gingrich gave his wife her walking papers a day out of cancer surgery. Now that’s character and as long as we play political games, and we view character in a ideological  sense, I don’t think the American public is going to be anything but cynical.”

Wall Street Journal’s Al Hunt on CNN’s Capital Gang, February 1. [42]