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by Steve Young

Steve Young columns

The Liberal Mainstream Media ignored it. The National Organization of Women chose to give the issue a pass. Hillary Clinton refused to call a press conference to ask for an apology.

But thankfully Fox News was there. While Congress and America were debating with wisdom of sending more than 20,000 more soldiers into Iraq, Fox News and its consorts, went on the attack...against Barbara Boxer.

Was it about her stance on the issue? Did she attempt to thrust San Francisco values onto our fighting men and women? Did Boxer criticize Condoleezza Rice's stylish footwear?

Nope it was about what I guess Fox thought was the only issue their discriminating audience could glom onto...Boxer insulted Rice's bachelorette status.

Here be Boxer's sin. With Rice appearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Boxer said, "Who pays the price? I'm not going to pay a personal price. My kids are too old, and my grandchild is too young," to serve, Boxer told Rice. "You're not going to pay a price, as I understand it, within immediate family. So who pays the price? The American military and their families."

Rice was obviously appalled by the question. "...I thought you could still make good decisions on behalf of the country if you were single and didnŐt have children," she later told the New York Times.

I would have thought so too, but obviously Ms. Rice has shown that to be highly questionable.

Rice said that the questioning might have gotten "a little too personal." Too personal? We're talking about the President's decision to send more American sons and daughters into a battle; a decision that 70 percent of America disagrees with. How can any question, no matter how you frame it, be too personal?

I guess you could frame it in a manner that is more loathsome trick than intelligent probe. Say like when Sean Hannity asked attorney Stanley Cohen, "Is it that you hate the President or that you hate America?" Okay, all the men who have stopped beating their wives, raise your hand.

Still, at Fox News, you put important questions debating the potential of more human sacrifice aside when a soundbite can distract the entire audience from the real issue.

The Murdoch-owned New York Post front page ran the headline "It's War. Dem Childless Condi Slur," and inside wrote, "The vapidity -- the sheer mindlessness -- of Sen. Boxer's assertion makes it clear that the next two years are going to be a time of bitterness and rancor, marked by pettiness of spirit and political self-indulgence of a sort not seen in America for a very long time."

The Post forgot to add, "...except, perhaps for the last 12 years."

"I think it was more than cheap -- it was degrading," said Fox News commentator Karen Hanretty "There's nothing more vicious than feminine politics, and Boxer proved herself a shrill harpy."

Fox News ran headlines all day Friday on the topic, such as, "Will Boxer Apologize?" and "Boxer Slimes Rice." The White House Fox contributor, Tony Snow said, Boxer's comments were "outrageous" and "a great leap backward for feminism."

All this proves one thing: when it comes to real debate, The Right Wing Noise Machine ain't got nuthin.'

But the award for best comment on this important issue of who is more not personally affected by the latest "surge," goes hands down to the largest Lord of Loud, Fox's Roger Ailes best bud, Rush Limbaugh.

"Here you have a rich white chick with a huge, big mouth, trying to lynch this -- an African American woman -- right before Martin Luther King Day, hitting below the ovaries here."

Like I said: "nuthin.'"

Steve Young is author of the wacky new children's novel, "15-Minutes" (HarperCollins)

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Albion Monitor   January 11, 2007   (

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