Having identified NASCAR fans as a natural constituency, Junior is going all out to woo them. With tax breaks? fixing their health care? beefing up Homeland Security? Nah. With a hit-and-run photo op and his own version of Celebrity Circle.

The WH website has an interactive section called “Ask the WH” which every day features various govt officials answering questions about what they do from ordinary citizens just like you. There are discussions with nonentities like Assistant to the President for Domestic Affairs Margaret Spellings and Senior Director of Technology Richard Russell, as well as with such leading lights as Deputy National Security Advisor for Communications Jim Wilkinson (yes, that Jim Wilkinson) and even Greg Mankiw. All very upright, sober, serious govt policy wonks, I’m sure, who fielded solemn questions about the economy, the Second Gulf War, and unemployment, among other things. Granted, they all repeat the standard Bush/Rove mantras–

Tom, from Winchester, Virginia writes:
If Saddam had no Weapons of Mass Destruction, no capability to create them, or other dangerous biologicalchemical wepaons then Why did he not let in the United Nations Inspectors over the past 10 years? If “Nothing” was there-if he lets them in-then He and Iraq are left alone.Jim Wilkinson
Good point. The international community — including the UN, UN inspectors, and intelligence services from other nations — stated that Saddam Hussein had large quantities of WMD that he failed to account for. Saddam Hussein repeatedly defied the international community over a decade or more. He defied 17 UN resolutions. He stonewalled UN inspectors, played cat and mouse games with the inspectors, and then he threw the inspectors out of Iraq. War was the President’s last option. And that’s why he exhausted his diplomatic options, including yet another UN Resolution. However, given a final opportunity to come clean Saddam Hussein chose defiance and war. I would point out that Iraq was a serious threat and our Nation is safer because he is gone.

–but at least they’re related to govt activities. Then, on Feb 13, we got a conversation with NASCAR’s Michael Waltrip, who so far as I know is NOT a govt official of any kind. In this conversation, we are treated to such questions as:

Drew, from Mount Airy writes:
Michael — what do you think the best racing video game is? What do you like about it?Michael Waltrip
I just like the realistic feeling I get when I do EA Sports NASCAR Thunder – it is a lot of fun. My palms sweat because it is so realistic and the tracks look so real. It is a good way to check into what we do.

This wouldn’t be what they call “pandering” would it?


(Thanks to Josh Marshall)

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