Tuesday, December 1, 2009

I Hucked Up!

Mr. Huckabee is a likable fella.

He has transitioned smoothly from the heavy hitting arena of state and national politics to snagging that all-too desirable gig as a television talking head on Fox's cable news channel.

He's easy to talk to and has the calming effect of a erudite psychologist; his southern Baptist charm and sensibilities reveal Huckabee's small-town cache...music stars, Hollywood moguls, John Q. Public and of course...politicos of every stripe and persuasion open up to him. However, Mike Huckabee has a problem that makes Tiger's (on-again-off-again semi-scandal) look provincial.

And, of course, the mainstream media haven't really focused on Mr. Huckabee's Willie Horton problem.

Make no mistake - Huckabee will be vilified if he chooses to run again for president in 2012. He did have the courage to man-up and appear on Bill O'Reilly Monday night and tell his side of the story regarding a certain convicted - then jailed, commuted, paroled and convicted again subject.

That subject - Maurice Clemmons - turned out to be a ruthless, evil cop killer.

Mike Huckabee was once even sued while Governor of Arkansas by then Circuit Judge Robert Herzfeld for allowing too many criminals out of prison. Yet, as he stated on O'Reilly's program Nov. 30, 2009:

MIKE HUCKABEE, FORMER ARKANSAS GOVERNOR: Well, Bill, first of all, I think the tragedy of this — if I could have known nine years ago this guy was capable of something of this magnitude, obviously, I would never have granted a commutation. It's sickening. The two people in this country that I value the most are soldiers and police officers, because they're the only thing standing between our freedom and total anarchy. And in the case of this particular individual, he was sentenced to 108 years for two crimes when he was 16. The post-prison transfer board, the process, and I'll be very brief about this, but to understand they recommended to me as governor for his commutation, which didn't release him, it simply cut his sentence to 47 years. That would give him parole eligibility. That was the commutation. I'm responsible for that, and it's not something I'm happy about at this particular moment, in light of that."if I would of known what the future held for this man, I would of never allowed his commutation to go forward."

O'Reilly, feeling some sorrow and compassion for a colleague, interrupted Huckabee during his contrite apology on national television by downplaying Mr. Huckabee's unfortunate decision to commute Clemmons in 2000.

The fact is, most Governor's parole, commute and otherwise free dozens of convicted felons at the end of their terms in office. In fact, I was surprised to hear that Huckabee actually read the dossier on Clemmons before he was processed. Most Governor's simply take the word of many judges, prosecutors and parole administrators, when deciding on clemency matters.

However, when the dust clears, and the pictures, videos and soundbites surrounding the tragic deaths of the four Lakewood, Wash. police officers are queued and the grieving family, friends and colleagues are seen mourning for their loss - Huckabee will die a slow and tortuous death.

I can picture a fellow primary candidate now, during a GOP debate, bring up the matter when the debate moderator asks the question: 'how will you handle the growing problem of prison overcrowding if you are elected president?' A few seconds later, we hear a smug Newt Gingrich rip into Huckabee before a national audience, much like Cheney ripped into his campaign-contributing hunting buddy with his 12-guage shotgun at a friend's south Texas ranch during the Bush-Cheney years.

And then...

Campaign slogans pop up at political rallies professing 'We like Mike' and 'Huck's our Guy' juxtaposed next to banners exclaiming - 'Pardon Me! I Hucked Up!'

Yeah, he's a nice guy...apparently too nice.

TOP TEN Reasons Mahmoud Ahmadinejad Scoffs at the US

10. Bush couldn't even find WMDs in Iraq.
9. Obama is the NEW Jimmy Carter!
8. We lobby the UN better than the AMA and the AARP lobbies Congress.
7. Obama isn't a REAL Muslim.
6. Cheney and his gang are out of office!
5. Hugo Chavez bet me $5 that I wouldn't piss off Bill's wife!
4. I cheated the Election process and nobody called me on it!
3. I'm trying to get my own reality TV show before Blago gets his.
2. I really didn't want my son to go to Columbia University anyway.
1. Allah Akbar! did you see that Uber bow Obama bestowed upon the Japanese Emperor?

TOP TEN Excuses Given by WH Dinner Crashers to the Secret Service

10. It's raining out and P.F. Chang's is packed!
9. My husband has an Indian-Sounding name.
8. We've been lobbying Oliver Stone to do a new JFK movie where the Secret Service are the heroes.
7. Is this where the free Thanksgiving Dinners are?
6. Katie Couric and I are both ex-Redskin cheerleaders.
5. We're originally from Scranton, PA and Wilmington, DE and Joe said it'd be alright.
4. We are the God Parents of 'Balloon Boy'
3. Dick Cheney dared us!
2. Rahm Emanuel decided to drop Blagojevich and invited us instead.
1. We donated a Crap Load of money to that SEIU president guy!

Deep in the Rough, Tiger Metes out his own Punishment

TIGER: Steve, what do we got?
STEVE (Tiger's Caddie): Well...it looks like you have a flyer lie and the ball's sitting down a bit.
TIGER: Nine?
STEVE: [throwing up a few blades of grass] Left-to-right cross wind...the pin is back right and you have 160 to clear the left-side bunker.
TIGER: I'm a bit pumped after that eagle [on the last hole].
STEVE: I'm thinking your 47 degree wedge will be the one...if you catch the flyer, you can use that crowned tier in the back middle of the green to spin your ball back towards the hole.
TIGER: Let's go with that, then.

Tiger woods is precise. And his caddie, Steve Williams, is his on-course PR guy, confidant, friend and bouncer (the Tiger Woods of crowd control guys).

Wherever Tiger goes on or off the course during a tournament, so goes 'Stevie.' This six-foot, four inch Kiwi is one of the best things that ever happened to Tiger.

But with Tiger stuck in eight-inch US Open rough - at Winged Foot no less - Stevie is not around to help Tiger extract himself from the dicey situation in which he finds himself.

Tiger Woods, the undisputed best golfer on the planet, has just snap-hooked his driver, er, [Escalade], hard to the left. What's most fascinating is that, like the impossible golf shots that he's made over the years, under the immense pressure of a major, Tiger is not in control of his next shot.

Always has a Game Plan

You see, even before Tiger became a Golf Pro in 1996 (Hello World!), he's always consulted with the best of the best. Jack Nicklaus and Arnorld Palmer have answered countless questions from Tiger regarding life outside of a 72-hole tournament. You see, Tiger wanted to know the secret to keeping focused with the media, dealing with travel, which tournaments to go to, which agents to deal with and which so-called business people to avoid.

When Michael Jordan retired from the Bulls, and fulfilled his need to coach an NBA team, Tiger consulted Michael on dealing with sponsors (Nike became Tiger's first big sponsor) and other esoteric life matters.

You see, Tiger was mapping out his game plan early on. Of course his father Earl was the most influential person in his life (teaching his young cub mental toughness, laser-like focus and how to handle adversity). After all, Tiger was nick-named in honor of a good buddy of Earl's from Vietnam - an Army Lieutenant. Tiger's given name was Eldrick. He officially and wisely changed his name to Tiger after turning pro.

However, regardless of the buzz created from the National Enquirer article, the fact that his wife Elin (pronounced E-lynn) went 'Judge Smails' on Tiger and allegedly smashed out the rear glass of his SUV, and the fact that it was about 2:30 am when he lost control of his vehicle just seconds from his driveway, makes little difference.

Tiger has always been a control freak. He is a control freak in a good sense; and that it allows him to navigate through his 24-7 life of public scrutiny. You see, Tiger may have gotten some bad advice from his agent, his newly retained lawyer or someone else when it came time to inform the authorities (and the very curious public) of the details regarding such a minor traffic accident.

But that was the club that Tiger chose.

Inconsistencies are Transparent

Let's look at some of the facts that have slowly trickled out:

1. Tiger's other four doors on his SUV looked to be perfectly suitable to open without the drama of smashing the rear glass with a golf club.
2. Apparently, there wasn't any blood found on the steering wheel or in the dashboard area.
3. My 12-year-old son would have difficulty exiting from the driver's seat over three rows of seats and out the back of the vehicle, let alone Elin pulling her 6' 1" 190 pound husband out.
4. Tiger said that he was unable to play in one of his favorite golf tournaments this week (Chevron World Challenge) because of his injuries from the accident. Really? Didn't Tiger play 90 holes during the 2008 US Open at Torrey Pines with a damaged meniscus and a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his Knee? Now he cannot play because of a fat lip and some soreness 6 days after a "minor" accident?

The reality is that one of the things that Tiger Woods will look back on during his eventual storied career will be the Tiger Woods Foundation that he created.

You see, he loves doing anything related to this life-long dream. Being the host of this tournament means big donations and lots of personal thank-you's. However, it means a lot more than that.

No, it will be a very long time before Tiger gets over the fact that he let himself down. His TWF won't suffer per se, but just the mere thought in this great athlete's mind that - well - It was his fault, will be enough punishment for anyone who has a controlling bone in his body.

Tiger will be forever incredulous about the situation that he finds himself in. He cannot merely take out his stock 3-wood and fire off one of his patented stingers down the middle.

You see, he has to find his way out of the US Open rough somehow, without Stevie, and by using his best club - his putter. But this shot does not call for the putter.

TIGER: Steve?
TIGER: Steve-o?
TIGER: Stevie? Steeeeevie?