Remember the "Seinfeld" episode where an alleged friend of the show's title character bad-mouthed him as "phony," then lamely spun it as a compliment when confronted by Seinfeld?
Self-professed "progressive talker" Ed Schultz tried much the same yesterday while talking with a caller about whether the federal government should engage in yet another bailout, this time for the ailing auto industry.
Schultz said he has little doubt that Congress will quickly enact some type of rescue package for Detroit, seeing how unions were an integral part of the coalition that elected Obama.
But Schultz sounded like he was momentarily reverting to his former conservative self in describing the relationship between unions and Democrats. As an audio clip of Schultz's remarks makes clear, the former collegiate gridiron star quickly realized his verbal fumble and pounced on the ball. Still, a fumble's a fumble, even when the guy dropping the pigskin gets it back --
SCHULTZ: I think the Big Three are going to have to explain to the Congress, if they're looking for that kind of money, what's the plan? Well, if you say what's the plan, then your competitor's going to come out and do something. So, they're in a very competitive environment. But, look, something's going to happen because the unions are too strong with the Democrats. And I think that's a positive thing. But, uh, that doesn't mean they just, you know, they're not going to stop designing and creating and getting better.
Was it my imagination or was there all of a split second between Schultz's unfortunate observation about labor's influence over Democrats and his about-face of this being "a positive thing?"
Nice try, Ed. Had you said unions are "strong" with Democrats, no spin would be needed. By saying "too strong," you are claiming the opposite.
For Schultz to deny this, he'd run the risk of being perceived as phony. Then again, some people could interpret that as complimentary.