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Mullings by Rich Galen
A Political Cyber-Column By Rich Galen
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Wednesday, March 7, 2001

  • First the Runnel - the tunnel under the Russian Embassy.

  • From the Associated Press wire: "MOSCOW - Incensed by a report that the U.S. government built a tunnel under the Soviet Embassy in Washington in the 1980s to eavesdrop, Russia's Foreign Ministry on Monday demanded that the United States provide details."

  • Oh, Puh-Leeze. The Russians think that we think they didn't know anything about this? The only reason this tunnel has become public is because Robert Hanssen is charged with having told his masters in Moscow all about it.

  • This is like the Communist Chinese demanding that former Energy Secretary Bill Richardson provide any missing files connected to the nuclear warhead data - that they stole.

  • The tunnel situation is a "Sopranos" episode: The Russians knew that we were listening, so they made stuff up and said it reeeeeeeaaaaly loudly. Our guys, thinking they were on to some great intelligence, hopped into their cars and drove past the George H.W. Bush CIA headquarters in Langley waving transcripts of the intercepted material, singing the FBI equivalent of the "nanny-nanny-boo-boo" song.

  • The CIA guys, of course, already know that the Russians know about the tunnel because the moles we have in Russia have told them. They're standing on the side of the road watching the FBI agents drive past shouting the CIA equivalent of "Oh, yeah? Well, nanny-nanny THIS!"

  • Bill Clinton was allegedly furious when he found out the Executive Branch of the federal government had - on its payroll - people who could dig secret tunnels and no one had offered to dig one from the White House out.

  • Next, stents.

  • Vice President Dick Cheney scooted out of the hospital yesterday morning exactly on schedule for having had an angioplasty.

  • How do I know this? I had about a dozen of those bad boys prior to my bypass surgery about three years ago.

  • If you tolerate the procedure well, then the standard practice is to stay in the hospital overnight, go home the next day, and go back to work the day after. Which is exactly what the Veep is planning to do.

  • There were times when I drove myself home from the hospital, before I got caught.

  • Notwithstanding the breathless reporting, the procedure the Vice President underwent was apparently to open an area at an edge of the stent which was installed last Fall. That area had narrowed due to a natural reaction of the artery wall to the injury of the stent having been installed in the first place.

  • It happens.

  • This is the White House transcript of the end of the President's remarks at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange:
    "I was reminded of that when I walked through and saw the pictures that many of the entrepreneurs here in the Merc had of their children -- it's such a refreshing sight to know that priorities are kept all across America.

    "This is a fabulous nation we live in. It's a nation based upon great values. It's a nation based upon the principle that if you work hard, anybody, regardless of where you're from, can get ahead. But it's going to be made better when all of us understand that there are certain responsibilities in life. I have a responsibility as your President. And when I put my hand on the Bible, I swore to uphold that responsibility, and I will. And you have the responsibility to love a neighbor like you'd like to be loved yourself. But it all starts with loving your children.

    "Thank you for letting me come by. God bless." (Applause.)

  • Here is a note from the "pool report" as written by the NY Times' Frank Bruni:
    "Possibly invisible to other reporters but noticed by the pool was that the [remarks] at the end of the President's speech about loving your children, etc., was spontaneous - he had folded and put away his notes by then."

  • I'm liking this guy more and more.

  • Just when the Clinton Pardon Story was apparently running out of steam, comes the news that Monica Lewinsky is going to be doing an HBO special which, according to the NY Times, "will primarily revolve around discussions that Ms. Lewinsky will have with graduate and undergraduate students of constitutional law, women's history, psychology and American history from various colleges and universities."

  • Heyyyyy! I have an idea.
       - Monica should lumber on up to Columbia University, SO;
       - She can speak to the students in Al Gore's class, WHERE;
       - HBO can tape it, AND;
       - Gore can ignore it, WHILE;
       - The MSS Hillary condemns it, BUT;
       - Bill's new office is in the neighborhood, NOW;
       - He should ask for that tunnel to be built so Monica can do a
         drop by.

  • This is why I am paid the very big bucks.

    -- END --
    Copyright © 2001 Richard A. Galen


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