Governin': Sen. Dan Coats Questions The Wrong Witness At The Wrong Hearing

from the thank-god-for-video-cameras dept

Let’s all admit something: being in government ain’t easy. Between all the lies you have to keep straight, counting all that bribe lobbying money, and constantly looking over your shoulder to see if the CIA is having you followed back to your office, being a representative of the people is one hell of an undertaking. Maybe that’s why that revolving door of government and lobbying keeps spitting folks out of our congressional buildings.

Take Senator Dan Coats, for instance. Coats is a serious guy with serious thoughts, such as “Hey, why can’t the damned public trust us to spy on them?” and “That guy looks like he has no friends, so he’s probably a terrorist!” His most recent thoughts, however, appear to be something along the lines of, “Holy crap, where the hell am I?” Here’s your senator at work, Indiana.

Should you be unable to see the video, that’s Senator Coats sitting down and questioning the wrong witness at the wrong hearing that he wasn’t even supposed to be attending. He rambles on a bit and you can almost see the hamsters spinning up in that noggin as he looks at the witness: “Wait a minute, something isn’t right.” But he powers through his mistake like a champion until a helpful aide passes him a note that I imagine read something close to: “The home called and they want you to go back to your room and take your pills.”

Look, it’s a mistake, I get that. Hell, I’ve shown up at some really awkward places due to a scheduling mishap (big shout out to all my girls from the Saint Benedict’s Nunnery bathroom, yo!), but to not only show up in the wrong place at the wrong time, but actually start questioning the wrong damned witness makes me wonder if Coats has anyone around him helping him out. He’s not…a loner, is he?

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Comments on “Governin': Sen. Dan Coats Questions The Wrong Witness At The Wrong Hearing”

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william (profile) says:

No he’s not a loner, this is just how these career politicians able to formulate their actions and put on auto pilot on pretty much everything.

We must admit that even Senators are human and it’s impossible to know everything. However, they must keep up the fa?ade of having an opinion on everything.

Therefore, to safely pilot through unknown waters, here is what you do.

0. pretend to be listening
1. Ask a questions that so generic that “The sky is blue” would be a valid answer
2. reverse the answer as a question back to the witness
3. now depend on the gut feeling, air temperture, weather, and what you have for lunch, you could either
a) show some outrage on something
b) congratulate on something that a committee has done (doesn’t have to remember the name, since there is always at least one committee of some sort)
4. pretend to listen some more
5. rinse and repeat 3 and 4
6. running out of time, again show your disbelief at something, then get a bit angry at something, then congratulate on how good/worse a job Obama is doing depends on your political alignment
7. adjourn

Now where is that patent form I needed to apply for “A process for uninformed person to simulate expertise of questions about life, universe, and everything”

Beta (profile) says:

fair's fair

He made a mistake, and as soon as he realized he’d made a mistake, he admitted it. All right, he made an excuse and didn’t quite apologize, but he didn’t try to bluff his way through or blame it on someone else. I don’t like to defend a man with his record, but this seems like a small error well handled, not a hilarious gaffe, not an example of instinctive evasive-action dishonesty, and not an appalling lapse in cognition that ought to put him on the next plane home.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: fair's fair

Its not so much that he screwed up and went to the wrong place, its his nonchalant attitude that is most worrisome.

Its clear that he really doesn’t care about what he is doing, if he did he:

1. Would have verified that he was in the right place, (all you have to do is ask)

2. Would have actually known who he was supposed to be questioning and immediately realized it was the wrong person.

3. Wouldn’t ask a question so generic that even the guy he was interviewing didn’t realize what was wrong.

It also bothers me that nobody else in the room realized he wasn’t supposed to be there and tried to stop him before he got started (except for the aide).

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: fair's fair

It also bothers me that nobody else in the room realized he wasn’t supposed to be there and tried to stop him before he got started (except for the aide).

Not that strange, considering that the hearing involved a subcommittee of the same committee he was a part of. He hadn’t -scheduled- himself to be there, but it would have been easy to assume he had a reason to be there. Until he started talking and the mistake became obvious anyhow.

Michael (profile) says:


… about what this site is all about. I had – mistakenly, evidently – thought that this was a site about TECH and all things TECH as they relate to the world of TECHNOLOGY.

But sadly, it appears that this site is rather about bashing one side of the political aisle, at every opportunity, no matter how UNRELATED that bashing is to TECHNOLOGY.

Will there EVER be an end to EVERYTHING AND EVERY SUBJECT somehow becoming a “political-ideology” driven slanderfest?

I guess I’ll just mark ‘Techdirt’ down as another site to completely avoid, at least when it comes to reading about TECHNOLOGY. I will, however, be sure to pimp this site to all the conservative-hating, hand-wringing shriekers that I have the distinct displeasure of running across.

That One Guy (profile) says:

Re: The poster doth protest too much...

You seem to be suffering from a rather severe case of ‘confirmation bias’, seeing what you want to see, and using it to justify an opinion you already had.

Yes the site is primarily a tech based site, but it also covers other topics that the various writers for the site find interesting or funny, in this case having a bit of a chuckle when a senator who doesn’t seem to care for the public made a rather boneheaded mistake and wandered into the wrong hearing, and then started questioning the wrong person.

I do find it a mite funny myself that you immediately tried to act as though this was a case of the site, as you said, ‘bashing one side of the political aisle’, as though it had anything to do with what party the politician was from(which you may notice is not listed anywhere), or his ideological leanings(which, other than the previously mentioned dislike/distrust of the public, linked to in the article, also isn’t mentioned), given you don’t have to be on this site for long to see that the R or D tags aren’t even mentioned when writing the articles, unless they are somehow central to what’s being discussed, and the only thing paid any mind is how those being talked about are acting and what they’re saying.

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