- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 21, 2002

Rumors of war, bankrupt airlines, the worst flood in Europe in 100 years, kidnapped and murdered little girls, repulsive CNN images of al Qaeda dog murders: August has regretfully not lived up to its silly season reputation until now. Good old Al Gore has come to the rescue. The former vice president has barred the press from his keynote speech he is to deliver next week to a Homeland Security Conference in Sacramento, Calif.
According to the ABC-TV Sacramento affiliate Channel 10, Mr. Gore the man of 1,000 personalities has indicated that he will be delivering his stock speech, "Technology and the Future of America," to 1,000 federal, state and local government officials who are paying $800 to attend the three-day conference. It should be clarified that the speech itself will not last three days although given the title and the speaker, the audience may experience some confusion on this point.
While the news report does not explain who is paying the $800 for each of these 1,000 government workers to attend the conference, we can be comfortable in the assumption that it will not be the government officials themselves. It stretches credulity to believe that anyone would spend $800 of his own money to pay for anything that included a keynote speech by Al Gore on technology.
Admittedly, Mr. Gore is the man who invented the Internet. And he does have an intimate knowledge of the technology of tobacco raising and processing. It also must be conceded that the former vice president did reinvent government. And, he is one of the few people not currently under the stewardship of the Master in Lunacy who understands why the internal combustion engine must be banned from our civilization.
I would be less than candid with you if I did not also recognize that Mr. Gore is the official author of the ghost-written scientific treatise, "Earth In The Balance" which reveals in agonizing detail how we can return our advanced civilization to the Cambrian Age (the geological period before the rise of the vertebrates). It's all quite logical. In a world populated by sea slugs, cockroaches and worms, there would be no one around to fix your internal combustion engine even if you had one.
But even with all these scientific accomplishments to his credit, it is still puzzling why the "nature of the material" of his speech requires barring the media from covering it. Of course, the first thought on hearing that the press are to be barred is that perhaps Tipper would be on the stage with him.
Who can forget his nominating convention speech when Tipper drove Al so wild with manly passion that for a moment the audience thought it was seeing Bill Clinton in a back room, rather than Old Al on stage (of course, once the audience realized that the man they saw on the stage was kissing his own wife, that thought receded). Perhaps Al is just prudently barring the press in case he loses control again. But surely it would be easier just to leave Tipper at the music shop in a nearby mall before delivering the speech.
Or perhaps he is barring the press because he plans to reveal scientific secrets that must not fall into enemy hands. Putting to one side for the moment the unlikeliness of Al Gore actually knowing anything worth stealing by the enemy, with 1,000 government officials in attendance there will no doubt be at least a few from the Pentagon.
And as we know, such men have been tirelessly and professionally trained immediately to leak to the New York Times anything of value to the enemy. So, as Al Gore was the man who reinvented government (except for the Pentagon, apparently), he would know that his secrets would not be safe with the audience.
Having thus excluded both pornography and state secrets from the list of possible explanations for barring the press from the speech, one is left with the surprising conclusion that Al Gore, after all these years, has suddenly gained wisdom and self-awareness.
He must finally have realized that he doesn't advance his cause by showing himself to the larger public. He always has done better in the polls before his public events, rather than after them (think of the presidential debates in 2000). So few politicians ever gain this powerfully useful self-insight. But former Vice President Al Gore has now joined current Vice President Dick Cheney amongst the chosen ones. He must have discovered that the secret of rising above the fawning, greasy ranks of presidential aspirants, is to remain in an undisclosed location. What the public doesn't know about Mr. Gore, can't hurt him.

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