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3/28/2007
ASTONISHING CYNICISM SHOWN BY THE DEMOCRATS
CATEGORY: Politics

I’ve been following politics for going on 40 years and during that time, I have witnessed the high, the low, the principled and unprincipled, the sheer human drama of democracy’s workings on display in all of its glory and shame.

But what has made politics a lifelong fascination for me have been the men and women who perform its rituals, parading across the great national stage in Washington - some making their mark, others going through the motions hoping not to get anyone angry at them lest the voters toss them into the street come election time. There have been smooth operators like Mike Mansfield and George Mitchell - gentlemen of the Senate whose courtliness and sense of fairness reflected a simpler, less partisan culture on Capitol Hill.

There have been entertainers, clowns, statesmen, stirring orators and mumbling hacks. There have been brilliant legislators and sickening poseurs. Their have been true patriots and those who would use patriotism for political gain.

And then there are today’s Democrats.

I don’t quite know how to classify this gaggle of cynical, posturing, cowardly bunch of partisan witch hunters, devious machinators, vengeful charlatans, and craven caterers to their unhinged, out of control base. A biologist would probably settle on a taxonomy relating them to the Hydra - the nine headed poisonous serpent of Greek mythology whose very breath could kill a man at twenty paces.

Today’s Democrats are not a political party. They are an amalgam of grasping, conniving, pusillanimous misanthropes, kept together by threats and outright bribery using taxpayer monies. That and their unreasoning, viral hatred of the President of the United States seems to be what animates the overwhelming majority of their members. And they are being alternately cheered on and menaced by their rabid dog base of netnuts, socialists, greens, one worlders, and anti-military kooks who see political advantage in siding with our enemies in Iraq.

That last may be a little strong but it is hard to define their opposition to the war as anything else. They can’t claim to be standing on principle - not after those votes yesterday in the Senate and two days ago in the House where members were literally bribed with pork to support the leadership’s position on withdrawal from Iraq. They can’t claim to be supporting the troops - not after being told in no uncertain terms that their bill was subject to a veto by the President while the Secretary of Defense informed them that without the emergency appropriation, our boys will be left high and dry in Iraq and Afghanistan by April 15.

And the certainly can’t claim to be promoting peace in Iraq - not when anyone with half a brain knows the consequences of our withdrawal before the Iraqi government and security forces are prepared to defend the streets against the brutal thugs and terrorists who bedevil the country today. The only “peace” achieved at that point will be the peace of the grave - both for Iraq and the small chance that democracy can still be achieved in that bloody, tragic country.

So if not for principle, or the troops, or for whatever “peace” means, we are left with the only rational reason for passing these bills - a desire to have the United States of America defeated on the field of battle.

We “need to be taught a lesson in humility” or we have to lose in order to show the American people what an incompetent boob is the President of the United States. Or, we must fail because success will only embolden the “neocons” in their mad desire to take over the world by military force.

And to those who say we are already “defeated” or that victory and defeat have no meaning in our present circumstances, you might want to answer the question of why the Democrats are so desperate to avoid the stigma of an Iraqi defeat that they openly talk of wishing to place the blame for our failure on the shoulders of George Bush? They have no illusions whatsoever about the blame game. They are playing it to the hilt. And they wish to cement that defeat by pulling out, guaranteeing that they will have a ready made issue to run on in 2008.

This from the left wing MyDD:

[Hillary] Clinton’s desire to remain in Iraq will continue the war in Iraq - the Iraqi people want the US out, and if it does not leave, many of them will keep fighting (wouldn’t you, if the situation was reversed?) She is for the war in Iraq - she voted for it, she has always refused to say she was wrong for doing so, and she would keep US troops in Iraq if elected. Her use of al-Qa’eda to justify keeping troops in Iraq is nothing more than a cynical play on the American public’s paranoia about al-Qa’eda, not a sincere strategy to defeat al-Qa’eda (or if it is, she’s beyond stupid, something I don’t believe.)

Hillary’s a pro-war candidate. And if Democrats nominate her, they will be nominating a pro-war candidate. And then the war will be a fully American war, not just a Republican one.

What can you say about such jaw dropping cynicism? Thomas Sowell tries gamely to define it:

If the war in Iraq is such an unnecessary and futile expenditure of blood and treasure as Pelosi et al. have been saying, why not put an end to it?

But to do that would mean taking responsibility for the consequences — and those consequences would be disastrous and lasting. They would probably still be lasting when the 2008 elections come around.

The Democrats cannot risk that. They have taken over Congress by a very clever and very disciplined strategy of constantly criticizing the Republicans, without taking the risk of presenting an alternative for whose results they can be held responsible.

There is no sign that they want to change that politically winning strategy now. Their non-binding resolutions against the war are a perfect expression of that strategy.

These resolutions put them on record as being against the war without taking the responsibility for ending it.

Indeed, that is the nub of the matter. They wish defeat in Iraq without making it appear that their actions in Congress had anything to do with it. This political sleight of hand would be entertaining if not for the stakes involved.

If the Democrats were to stand on principle, they would embrace measures to defund the troops, to “stop the slaughter” as they are so fond of opining everywhere someone sticks a microphone in their face. But then their strategy for losing would be too transparent and the American people would rightly punish them in 2008. Better to use stealth and sneak around in dark corners offering goodies to wavering members than stand up and be counted when destiny and history tap you on the shoulder.

The Republicans are in disarray. The White House has mounting problems defending itself against ravenous Congressional Committees who will investigate not only what needs to be investigated but also conduct detours into partisan witch hunts that serve no purpose except to skewer their political opponents. And the American people, fed a daily diet of incomplete, non-contextualized news from Iraq from a biased media are sick to death of it all and wish there was some way to gain a victory while bringing our troops home as soon as possible.

Meanwhile, the clock is ticking for our forces in Iraq and Afghanistan and the money is running out. Perhaps the Democrats can drop their posing and posturing long enough to pass a bill the President can sign.

There’s some wishful thinking for you.

By: Rick Moran at 8:30 am
22 Responses to “ASTONISHING CYNICISM SHOWN BY THE DEMOCRATS”
  1. 1
    Drongo Said:
    9:09 am 

    “And to those who say we are already “defeated” or that victory and defeat have no meaning in our present circumstances, you might want to answer the question of why the Democrats are so desperate to avoid the stigma of an Iraqi defeat that they openly talk of wishing to place the blame for our failure on the shoulders of George Bush?”

    I’d say because they don’t want to be blamed for a defeat that is (in their view) not of their making. I think the defeat is a bipartisan thing, both parties went to war, neither of them had a clue what that meant at the time. Now they’re stuck in the most craven of positions all round, saving face. But the dems can save face by pulling out, the republicans cannot save face so delay the time of blame. Which is the more wussy option? Who knows. All I know is that one results in more deaths of US troops and the other doesn’t.

    Yeah, the dems are about as strong as a jelly. The republicans are corrupt and totally incompetent.

    Take your pick in the two party system.

  2. 2
    Andy Said:
    10:02 am 

    Good post Rick. Opposition to the war is a valid and honorable point of view, but those who share it should work to end the war with constitutional means - either defunding it entirely, and/or repealing the AUMF.

  3. 3
    Rick Moran Said:
    10:08 am 

    Andy:

    I’m surprised. I thought there would be a little too much “red meat” in there for someone as balanced and objective as you.

    Plus, I thought you might object to the “victory-defeat” part of the post. I personally think that we have to change our definition of “victory” but that a satisfactory outcome in Iraq is still possible. Not ideal. Not a bed of roses. Just “satisfactory” - as in having done all that we can and then removing the bulk of our forces (leaving behind trainers and advisors.

    I respect your opinions which is why I was pleased that you liked the post.

  4. 4
    The Thunder Run Trackbacked With:
    10:21 am 

    Web Reconnaissance for 03/28/2007

    A short recon of what’s out there that might draw

  5. 5
    Martin Morgan Said:
    11:53 am 

    Why would you possibly criticize MYDD for characterizing the war as Republican? That’s exactly how the White House wanted it to be seen!

    How do you interpret these comments by Rove back in 2005 attempting to establish a theme for the 2006 elections:

    “Conservatives saw the savagery of 9/11 in the attacks and prepared for war; liberals saw the savagery of the 9/11 attacks and wanted to prepare indictments and offer therapy and understanding for our attackers.”

  6. 6
    Andy Said:
    12:06 pm 

    Thanks Rick,

    The thing that bothers me about these latest democratic proposals is just how you laid it out. I can respect - totally respect - those opposed to the war and I can even respect, to a certain degree, those who believe we have no hope of “winning.” And you’re right, defining terms is important here and many people have differing definitions of what “winning” means. The thing that really irks me, that you laid out really well, is how unprincipled the largely Democratic opposition to the war in Congress really is. The pork-vote buying, the intrusion of Congress into the power of the Executive as Commander-in-Chief, the obvious and blatant way the Democrats are going about this to protect themselves politically. Calling the Democrats out on this doesn’t mean that I support Republicans - in fact I think if the roles were reversed there’s a good chance Republicans would do something similar.

    And that’s really what bothers me. Partisanship has gotten to the point in this country where it’s being put above the lives of my friends, brothers and sisters currently serving in Iraq. If you don’t support the war and support the troops (two ideas I believe are not mutually exclusive), then defund the war, amend or repeal the AUMF and end it and take responsibility for whatever happens. That’s Congress’ duty and they’ve been shirking their responsibilities for far too long.

    The victory-defeat part of your post didn’t bother me at all. I can honestly see why some consider the war already a defeat even though I don’t agree with that position. My opinion is that the victory-defeat debate is the one we ought to be having. None of our political leaders on either side are debating what level of victory we should aim for at this point. Everyone is talking past each other using terms like “win,” “lose,” “victory,” “defeat” with no real context on what those mean to short or long-term American strategic interests, to say nothing of the consequences of various alternatives to American interests. Completely missing from most Democratic talking points (with a few notable exceptions) is any discussion of what strategic interests we have in Iraq and what course of action we should take to preserve those interests. It’s just “get out, get out, get out.” The Republicans are marginally better but they haven’t laid out a compelling and cogent case either. What are our interests? How can we best secure them? How long is it likely to take? If our goals are unrealistic (a secure, stable, democratic Iraq), then what alternatives should we examine? That’s what our political leaders should be discussing, imo.

    So in my moderate view, your post was pretty much on with respect to the Democratic side. A lot of your language was “read meat” but the ideas behind the language are not.

  7. 7
    Nick D. Said:
    12:50 pm 

    Rick wrote in comment #3: “I personally think that we have to change our definition of “victory” but that a satisfactory outcome in Iraq is still possible. Not ideal. Not a bed of roses. Just “satisfactory” – as in having done all that we can and then removing the bulk of our forces (leaving behind trainers and advisors.”

    Germane excerpt from interview with former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton in the March 2007 “Limbaugh Letter”:

    “I don’t think America could ever determine that Sunnis and Shia and Kurds were ever going to live together, or what arrangement they were going to make for themselves. That was always a question for Iraqis. Our obligation was not to resolve their differences, which have been going for hundreds of years, but to provide extra security so they could make their own choices. We don’t have an obligation, really, on one side or the other of any of the competing factions inside Iraq.

    We have to measure America’s real interest, that we don’t want a failed state, such as happened in Afghanistan, that’s open for a base of terrorism… We’ve got to calculate our own interests, and as the issues arise try and decide where we come out, not because we have an abstract interest in one particular sectarian view within Iraq, or the broader Arab world.

    We have won the victory we sought [in Iraq], which is the overthrow of Saddam. The next question is whether we can find a way to prevent Iraq or any part of Iraq from being a base for terrorism. That’s the victory I think we need to be searching for. Victory for the people of Iraq, living in a peaceful, prosperous, democratic society is their battle. It’s not America’s battle.

    I think the best we can do is to make sure that, as the political evolution of Iraq continues, our interest in preventing it from becoming a base for terrorism is to protect it. And that may well require the use of military force for a considerable period of time. But that is not the same thing as trying to decide what the government of the new Iraq will look like, what the deal between Sunnis and Shias or any of that. Those are fundamental questions they’ll have to answer, and the sooner they answer them the better…

    “[T]he question we need to ask is: ‘what’s important for America?’ We’re not trying to build the platonically perfect Iraq. We’re trying to preserve our own interests. So when people argue we should have a federation, or we should favor one Iraq, or we should favor a breakup into three pieces, that’s all very interesting. But it doesn’t answer the fundamental question, which is: ‘what’s in America’s interest?’”

  8. 8
    ed Said:
    1:07 pm 

    I agree completely about the gutlessness of the Democrats. Defund the war or sit down and shut up. I do struggle with this aspect of your writing:

    “And the certainly can’t claim to be promoting peace in Iraq – not when anyone with half a brain knows the consequences of our withdrawal before the Iraqi government and security forces are prepared to defend the streets against the brutal thugs and terrorists who bedevil the country today.”

    If the United States military cannot control the thugs in Iraq after four years of trying, how on Earth will the Iraqi government accomplish this task? This is not some wisecrack, I really do not see an answer to this question. The administration always calls for “more training” of Iraqi forces. After this many years, no rational person could still think the problem is a training issue.

    Just as I said “defund the war or sit down and shut up” to Democrats, let’s also say, “make Iraq work or go home” to the Republicans.

    Our American military will never be defeated on the battlefields of Iraq. There can be no winners in the political blame game, however. Our poor planning and execution in Iraq is a political failure of both Congress and the White House, both Democrats and Republicans.

  9. 9
    Sirius Familiaris Said:
    3:03 pm 

    Rick,

    You failed to discuss the media’s impact on the American public and the insurgency. By any objective measure, the constant emphasis on failure, scandal, etc., has simultaneously sapped American will and encouraged all manner of thuggery in the Iraqui theater.

    We can overlook neither the failures in leadership on our side nor the egregious transgressions of a press that wields its privilege. While we can hold the President in particular and Republicans in general responsible for their mistakes, there is no way of containing the threat posed by MSM propagandists. And Democrats know this, which may go a long way toward explaining their extreme cynicism on not just the war in Iraq, but on virtually every issue of national security that has arisen since September 11.

    In any case, Democrats will have their cake and eat it, too. The self-appointed guardians of truth in the press will see to that.

  10. 10
    truthteller Said:
    4:21 pm 

    Today’s Democratic Party is one that is too unified by hatred and ‘progressive views’ and too short on a country-uniting platform.

    Rick, I must say that you summarized the Democratic Party of today brilliantly with, ‘And they are being alternately cheered on and menaced by their rabid dog base of netnuts, socialists, greens, one worlders, and anti-military kooks who see political advantage in siding with our enemies in Iraq.’

    As I have written recently, the left-wing segment of the Democratic Party is a hate-filled, intolerant group of extremists hell-bent on the destruction of American conservatives, Republicans and Christians. They display the worst in hypocrisy and bad manners and a visceral, seething angst for those who love American principles.

    One hallmark of today’s left-wing Democratic culture is an intolerance for those who disagree with their position. There is no respect for opinions outside of their mindset. This trait is not one that will help the country in the Oval Office

  11. 11
    Hot Air » Blog Archive » Video: Bush quotes Iraq the Model Pinged With:
    5:01 pm 

    [...] It’s still too early to gauge the success of the surge but that won’t stop Gallup from taking a meaningless poll. I leave you with our quote of the day, as discovered by Rick Moran while he was trolling the blog that brings you Pretty Vicious Rants and Important Action Alerts regularly in the service of people-powered politics: [Hillary] is for the war in Iraq – she voted for it, she has always refused to say she was wrong for doing so, and she would keep US troops in Iraq if elected. Her use of al-Qa’eda to justify keeping troops in Iraq is nothing more than a cynical play on the American public’s paranoia about al-Qa’eda, not a sincere strategy to defeat al-Qa’eda (or if it is, she’s beyond stupid, something I don’t believe.) [...]

  12. 12
    Rick Moran Said:
    5:37 pm 

    Sorry Carl.

    No stream of consciousness baloney here. I’d be embarrassed to put that crap on my site.

    That may be possibly the worst writing I have encountered on the internet. Incoherence, hyperbole beyond belief, half truths, untruths, fantasy - an insult to intelligent discourse.

  13. 13
    Ed Driscoll.com Trackbacked With:
    5:40 pm 

    “And Then The War Will Be A Fully American War”

    Well, I think we have an answer to this. What are the odds that some enterprising reporter on the campaign trail will ask Hillary for her own take on it? I know, I keed! I keeed! (Speaking of which, if…

  14. 14
    Vietnam - Vietnam » Bush pulls ’swift boat’ ambassador nominee Pinged With:
    6:14 pm 

    [...] This post by Rick Moran really got me going today–because he nails exactly the anger and frustration I have been feeling. [...]

  15. 15
    Frederick Said:
    7:02 pm 

    Perhaps the Democrats can drop their posing and posturing long enough to pass a bill the President can sign.

    They did. And if the President decides (he’s the Decider, right?) to not sign it and thereby defund the troops, it’s on him.

  16. 16
    Neo Said:
    9:06 pm 

    SEN. Dianne Feinstein has resigned from the Military Construction Appropriations subcommittee. As previously and extensively reviewed in these pages, Feinstein was chairperson and ranking member of MILCON for six years, during which time she had a conflict of interest due to her husband Richard C. Blum’s ownership of two major defense contractors, who were awarded billions of dollars for military construction projects approved by Feinstein.

    Talk about bipartisanship.

  17. 17
    Right Voices » Blog Archive » SF Liberal: “I’m convinced that the American Military would perform just as poorly in Iran, if not worse, than it has in Iraq.” Pinged With:
    10:21 pm 

    [...] See: Video: Bush quotes Iraq the Model and ASTONISHING CYNICISM SHOWN BY THE DEMOCRATS [...]

  18. 18
    Drongo Said:
    3:55 am 

    “As I have written recently, the left-wing segment of the Democratic Party is a hate-filled, intolerant group of extremists hell-bent on the destruction of American conservatives, Republicans and Christians. They display the worst in hypocrisy and bad manners and a visceral, seething angst for those who love American principles.

    One hallmark of today’s left-wing Democratic culture is an intolerance for those who disagree with their position. ”

    You honestly cannot see the irony in this statement?

  19. 19
    Nick D. Said:
    7:19 am 

    “One hallmark of today’s left-wing Democratic culture is an intolerance for those who disagree with their position.”

    H/t Powerline:

    “On March 5 the Heritage Foundation turned its podium over to comedian/commentator Evan Sayet for his talk “How Modern Liberals Think.” I’d never heard of him before, but I’m glad I have now. The video of his talk is 48 minutes long. The talk is brilliant and worth every minute of your time…”

    Excerpt [rough transcript]:

    “The Cult of Indiscriminateness: The only way to eliminate bigotry is to eliminate rational thought…

    “In order to eliminate discrimination, the modern Liberal has opted to become utterly indiscriminate. The problem is, of course, that the ability to discriminate, to thoughtfully choose the better of the available options as in, ’she’s a discriminating shopper’, is the essence of rational thought.

    So, quite literally we are dealing with the whole of Western Europe and today’s Democratic party — dominated as it is by this philosophy — that rejects rational thought as a ‘hate crime’. So, what you’re left with after ten, twelve, fourteen, twenty years in the leftist indoctrination centers that our schools have become, are citizens of voting age who, on the one hand are utterly unwilling and incapable of critically judging the merits of the positions they hold and have held unquestioned since they’re five years old, since they first entered the leftist indoctrination process…

    “[In lyrics from Supertramp's] ‘Goodbye Stranger’… ‘Now I believe that what you say is the undisputed truth, but I have to see things my own way, just to keep me in my youth.’ And that is so much the mindset of the modern Liberals. It’s not that they’re not aware of all the things that we’re aware of. It’s that they need to reject them in order to remain in this five-year-old utopia that they’ve been told is the only hope for mankind. So, what you’re left with is, not only adults/citizens of voting age, who cannot judge their own positions, but who are virulently antagonistic to any position other than their own. Why? Because when you’ve been brought up to believe that indiscriminateness is a moral imperative, any position other than [your] own, must have employed discrimination. This is why [in the modern Liberal mindset e.g.,] ‘Bush is Hitler!’” -– Evan Sayet, 3/5/07

    http://powerlineblog.com/archives/017172.php

  20. 20
    Neo Said:
    8:56 am 

    THE SENATE has now joined the House of Representatives in setting a deadline for the withdrawal of U.S. combat troops in Iraq. Its date is a year from now — March 31, 2008. The House’s deadline is Aug. 31, 2008.

    What is so important about Aug 31, 2008 ?

    I know it’s just before the election, but why not Nov. 31, 2008 ? Think about for a second .. if there is a withdrawal of troops by Aug, just what kind of mess will there be in Iraq on election day, some 2 months later ?
    A big mess. A huge mess.

    I got this feeling that somebody was so intent on the impact a withdrawal would have on the election, they forgot to factor in the “blowback” that would also affect the election.

    A smarter move would be to make sure the withdrawal is ongoing and nearly complete by the election, thus the image of troops returning could be exploited politically. Instead, under the Aug scenario, the scenes we will see just days before the election will be general strife and most likely a full civil war in Baghdad and parts south. A virtual repeat of the Viet Nam experience when Congressional Democrats cut off funding and were blamed for the bad ending.

  21. 21
    Drongo Said:
    9:52 am 

    “In order to eliminate discrimination, the modern Liberal has opted to become utterly indiscriminate. The problem is, of course, that the ability to discriminate, to thoughtfully choose the better of the available options as in, ‘she’s a discriminating shopper’, is the essence of rational thought.”

    Yes, you can find plenty of this stuff in the world. I haven’t seen much evidence of people losing the capacity for rational though myself, but there we are. Maybe my point would be best illustrated by a conversation I had with a man while working behind the bar;

    Man : “The French aren’t worth much. Bloody Germans are a bunch of flatulent gits. Americans? Don’t get me started on Americans. etc, etc for about 5 minutes. And you know why British people are better than that lot?”

    Me : “No, please tell me”

    Man : ” ‘Cause they’re all so bloody arrogant”

    Do you see the relevance?

  22. 22
    Arch Arthur Said:
    4:30 pm 

    The US military won every battle in Vietnam. Not one unit surrendered. When, in 1972 in the midst of peace talks, the North Vietnamese invaded the South again, Nixon had us bomb the North. On 18 December, Le Duc To walked out in Paris, Nixon had us carpet bomb Hanoi and Haiphong with 100+ B52 sorties per night. On 29 December, Hanoi was in ruins and their air defenses expended. The North returned and negotiated a just peace. By any standard, that constituted a military victory. It cost the lives of 58,202 American soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines.

    Democrats in control of Congress cut South Vietnamese aid from $1.4B to $700M - less than necessary to sustain a defense. In the FY 75 defense approriation bill, the Senate added the Case-Church amendment, prohibiting the US armed forces from interviening in North or South Vietnam, Laos or Cambodia.

    850,000 of our South Vietnamese allies were “re-educated” to death. 150,000 boat people died trying to escape. In Cambodia, Pol Pot murdered 2,000,000 of his countrymen - a third of their population. These are the numbers, the scope, but not the story.

    The story is Larry. He was a 23 year old 1Lt pilot. I was Capt and his weapons systems officer (WSO). That night I was working in the frag shop - breaking out the next day’s mission orders until 1 AM. Larry was a scheduler, waiting for the missions, takeoff times, targets, ordnance. He asked me if I could fly in the morning; he was short of backseaters. I declined. Like him, I had been on duty since 5 AM the previous day and I was dead tired. When I woke up at 10 AM, I learned that Larry had put himself on the schedule and took an SA-2 hit over North Vietnam. He left a widow and a young son.

    The story is Bob, a 28 year old WSO with a heart of gold. Driving through DaNang City in a pouring rainstorm, I almost ran over a puppy. Bob had me stop and dried to little guy off. None of the locals claimed ownership, so he took the dog in. One night we had a drunken party in the squadron bar. I staggered off to my BOQ, fell down, got up, I went the wrong way, opening Bob’s door and stumbled onto his bed. Who the hell was in my bed, I thought as I threw the sleeping WSO onto the floor. Later, I woke up and realized I was in someone else’s room. When I got to my room, Bob was sleeping in my rack. I threw him out again. Bob was shot down over Laos, captured by the North Vietnamese, casterated and executed with a pistol shot in the forehead.

    To me, the story is about Larry, Bob and the other twelve members of my squadron and other friends whose names are on the Vietnam Memorial. As I touched their names at Gathering of Eagles, I hoped that I would not be joined by another generation of young service members whose war dead were just another prop in an election campaign.

    As Dr. Sowell suggested, if our politicians going to cut and run to win an election or meet a campaign promise, let’s do it now, before another Larry or Bob dies.

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