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Hullabaloo


Friday, January 30, 2015

 
He's busy fighting terrorism three days a week

by digby

Scott Walker. I just. I can't:
As one of more than a dozen Republicans with a plausible shot at the nomination, Walker is well aware that he must fill in his national profile. He got an assist from Fred Malek, the former Richard Nixon official and founder of the American Action Forum, who lobbed batting-practice softballs that allowed Walker to talk about his faith, his family, and his limited foreign policy experience.

Walker seemed particularly intent on guarding against the idea that a Midwestern governor might lack sufficient national security expertise to plausibly occupy the White House. Malek had his back. “You command the [Wisconsin] National Guard,” he told Walker. “I wondered if you might want to comment on how you feel about the threat posed by ISIS and other entities abroad?”

It turned out Walker did. “That’s a great question,” he replied. “You know, the interesting thing with that is, as a governor, not only do I and the other governors, the commanders in chief of our National Guard at the state level, which is a distinct honor and privilege … as a part of that, my adjutant general that I have in the Wisconsin National Guard is also my chief homeland security adviser. And on a fairly frequent basis he, along with members of the FBI, gives me and I presume other governors security threat assessments. So we go and get classified information—important confidential information—about threats not only to our state but typically within our region and across the country. Without violating the terms of any of those specifically, I just gotta tell you that for my children and others like them, I see on an ongoing basis legitimate concerns about the threat to national security, state by state and across this country. And it’s one of the reasons why I’ve said repeatedly, one of the most important things we need out of our leaders in Washington, particularly our commander in chief, is leadership.”

Walker didn’t elaborate on his strategy to defeat ISIS, and his adjutant general wasn’t available to ask. Nor did he elaborate on anything else.
LOL! He's a regular Eisenhower, I tell you!

That's from a longer piece by Joshua Green at Bloomberg.

*FYI: The "fighting terrorism three days a week" is lifted from an anecdote in Perlstein's "Before the Storm" in which he quotes an Orange Country California housewife saying she was busy fighting communism three days a week.

Update: Soeaking of Perlstein, I should just mention that Fred Malek is this guy:

It's one of the more gothic stories about Nixon related in Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein's The Final Days. As they tell it, late in 1971--the same year, coincidentally, that the Washington Senators moved to Texas and changed their name to the Rangers--Nixon summoned the White House personnel chief, Fred Malek, to his office to discuss a "Jewish cabal" in the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The "cabal," Nixon said, was tilting economic figures to make his Administration look bad. How many Jews were there in the bureau? he wanted to know. Malek reported back on the number, and told the President that the bureau's methods of weighing statistics were normal procedure that had been in use for years.

In 1988, when George Bush pere installed Malek as deputy chairman for the Republican National Committee, Woodward dusted off his notes and, with the Washington Post's Walter Pincus, further revealed that two months after Malek filed a memo on the matter--he'd counted 13 Jews, though his methodology was shaky--a couple of them were demoted. (Malek denied any role and said Nixon's notions of a "Jewish cabal" were "ridiculous" and "nonsense.")