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April 27, 2011

Too marvelous for words

A couple weeks ago, Sen. John Kyl (R-Ariz.) — while addressing his colleagues and the nation at large from the Senate floor — said something that got a lot of attention. His actual comment isn’t really that important; he was talking about Planned Parenthood, and, honestly, whenever anybody says anything about Planned Parenthood, somebody else is going to get excited or upset. It was wrong of him to talk about it, but that’s water under the bridge.

Some people claimed that what Sen. Kyl said wasn’t true. They said that instead of 90 percent of something, it was actually 3 percent. It seems pretty obvious the problem here is that Sen. Kyl chose to apply numbers to an issue. That is never a good idea. Numbers are never reliable. They act like they are very specific, but they are ultimately meaningless.

Unfortunately, when some people heard what Sen. Kyl said, they came up with a way to suggest it wasn’t true. It was a real “gotcha moment,” as they say in the media, which is where all of the important things get said. But instead of pointing out how Kyl was improperly discussing a topic and applying numbers, the media simply would not get off the idea that Kyl “wasn’t telling the truth.”

Now, if anybody knows anything about me, they know I love the media, but the media really got this part of the story wrong. The real story was that Sen. Kyl’s brain was processing information, translating it into a variety of synaptic signals that traveled from his brain to his throat and mouth area where the little pieces of electronic information were used to force his tongue to create waves of audible vibrations that moved the air around in the Senate chamber and created the idea that a message was being conveyed. I love it when this happens. I am always so amazed by it. Sometimes I get so excited, I jump up and down. Sometimes I even make similar attempts to convey messages, but as soon as I hear the sounds coming out of my mouth, I start laughing. Did I do that? I am a funny little monkey. Ha ha. I did it again!

Well, anyway, after the media came up with this angle about Kyl reporting inaccurate facts (that is still so funny to me!), the senator’s press department responded (appropriately, I might add) that their boss’ “remark was not intended to be a factual statement.” This is a “no-brainer”; people don’t get to be senators by engaging in the practice of making factual statements, and it is simply rude to assume they would suddenly start spewing actual true facts at some point or another. The media should be ashamed. If I were the media’s keeper, I would put the media in the corner and not give it a treat for at least 35 minutes. It might hurt me more than it would hurt the media, but I am all about “tough love,” so I could take it.

But this story doesn’t end there; it goes on, because the media totally jumped on the story about how the senator’s press release was not an acceptable explanation about the his original comment. They had what is commonly referred to in the media as a “field day.” There were many auditory vibrations traveling through the air at that time. It made my ears tickle. At one point, I had to put my fingertips in my ears and hoot loudly to make them stop.

And then, just as the laughter was dying down, Sen. Kyl pulled another boner! Everything had been resolved so perfectly, so he wanted to offer a clarification. He said, “I misspoke when I said what I said on the floor, and I said so.” I think this may be my favorite sentence ever spoken, except I think I would like it better if he said, “I misspoke when I said what I said on the said, and I said so.” Sure, it doesn’t make any sense, but it has rhythm and flair.

Seriously, if the senator had any balls, he would abandon this archaic idea that words have meanings, and he would just make sounds based on how pretty they sound as they move the air around.

For further consideration: The best movie I saw in the last 24 hours was “Dogtooth.”