If you happened to be, watching CNBC’s on Monday afternoon and saw the rude performance by Rand Paul in his interview with anchor Kelly Evans than you are more than familiar with this abysmal excuse for public discourse. If you missed it, you will definitely want to see the clip below. That’s especially true if you’re thinking of supporting Paul for president in 2016.
In the course of the interview, Paul completely lost his cool. He talked right over Evans, quibbled with her and interrupted her repeatedly. If you’ve ever watched MSNBC’s Chris Matthews in action, you know just how aggravating that sort of behavior can be. After all, it’s one thing to stridently disagree with someone and another to be boorish and rude in conversation. If you are seriously considering running for president, issues like ill-mannered behavior are of the utmost importance. If Mr. Paul can’t handle some straightforward and fair questions from a CNBC newscaster how will he ever be able to stand up to a Vladimir Putin or some tin horn dictator from the third world.
Perhaps by the time of Paul’s late afternoon interview on CNBC his ill-conceived comments on vaccination had already begun to give him cause for concern. Perhaps he realized that those comments were now public record, which would eventually have to be retracted. Could it be that he felt he was about to be set up on CNBC, who’s parent is the liberal leaning National Broadcasting System? Maybe Mitt Romney’s sudden exit from the 2016 presidential race upset Paul’s political calculus and he was rattled by the rapidly changing political landscape in front of him. Whatever the case may be Rand Paul’s performance this past Monday afternoon leaves a lot to be desired and it is understood that we expect more from someone who wants to be president.
Now I’m sure that there will be those who will just try to palm this off as yet another attack by the liberal left leaning mainstream media but I’m not buying into that canard for one minute. Paul has come in for more than his fair share of criticism from Dick Cheney and the Neoconservatives for his stance on foreign policy. And while NBC may be a liberal network, CNBC is hardly staffed by a bunch of “bleeding heart lefty do gooders”. If you’ve ever listened to Joe Kernan or Rick Santelli, who literally gave the Tea Party movement its name, you won’t buy into that argument. CNBC’s programming is hardly far to the left. More to the point, sitting on the very panel interviewing Paul was Larry Kudlow a renowned free market, supply-side economist with a track record of unrelenting criticism of the Obama administration. For the record even Kudlow, a friend of Rand Paul, remarked on his poor performance in the interview.
Back in the 1980s and beyond there was a popular syndicated etiquette columnist, Judith Martin, who wrote under the pen name “Miss Manners” Martin was very much concerned by the steady erosion of basic manners in society and mounted a vigorous effort in her column to forestall any further decline in civility. I would suggest that Mr. Paul look her up and failing to find her look to someone else for guidance and mentoring before he gets back in front of a television or open microphone, particularly if he wants to be a viable candidate for the country’s highest office.
Steven J. Gulitti
4 February 2015
Defensive? Sen. Rand Paul on voluntary vaccines; http://video.cnbc.com/gallery/?video=3000351424
Rand Paul Walks Back Vaccination Remarks;