We started the evening where we began lunch; The Blue Fin Restaurant in Manhattan’s Times Square. Unlike lunch, our private room was no match for the dinner rush outside, but things quieted as people left for Broadway plays and musicals, which began promptly at 8 PM.
Regardless, the exterior din was well worth the wonderful crowd we had inside that room that evening; a number of folks came from Los Angeles to see both Cavett and Cuomo. As for me, I found myself sitting between one of my favorite writers, Gay Talese, and former supermodel Carmen Dell’Orefice, who could (and should) run a finishing school on how people are supposed to behave. It just does not get any better than that.
I think we will put something together in New York so we can gather for a nightcap (or two) after experiences like these.
Rather than describe the dinner in great detail, I will let Governor Cuomo’s gracious words speak for themselves.
REMARKS BY GOVERNOR MARIO M. CUOMO
“THE LUNCHEON SOCIETY” DINNER
We were invited by Bob McBarton to respond to the question: “Has political bi-partisanship completely broken down in the nation’s Capitol because ideological purity too often replaces intelligent collaboration?”
It is a vital question that every day becomes more serious. Most recently it was focused upon by Evan Bayh. I believe I have had some experience with that kind of troublesome rigidity ─ Bayh ─ and many others are talking about.
In my early years as a lawyer I enjoyed the struggle called “litigation” immensely. Don’t give an inch! The competitiveness, the court as coliseum… “The thrill of victory; the agony of defeat”.
That muscular intellectual kind of combat had a primal attraction for me. I thought things like mediation and arbitration that displaced litigation were a concession of weakness that should be carefully avoided.
Over time however, I’ve been able to overcome a number of different primal instincts… an obsession with the virtues of rigidity and litigation is one of them.
After years of experience I concluded that relentless insistence on vigorous litigation reflects a human failure to be able to arrive at a wiser consensus, compromise, and peaceful coexistence.