The Meme Spreads

I see the lefty memes I warned about yesterday are beginning to spread.l Remember, the two memes are:

1.) “Just because ballots were cast it doesn’t mean it is going to lead to a democracy.”

2.) “What about the WMD? We went in after the WMD.”

From the consistently dyspeptic Eric Alterman, today:

Whats more, elections do not a democracy make, and democracy is not necessarily the first or most important thing needed in Iraq to make that country safer and more securemuch less to accomplish the goal of reversing the hatred of the United States sown across the Arab world by the malignant policies and pronouncements of the Bush administration.

I am not sure what is more annoying- that this is the best they can do to try and talk down the elections, or the assumption that we don’t realize it takes more than voting. I mean, after all, they had elections in Iraq before the invasion, and it was no Democracy. Hell- lkook at the coups staged by Karl Rove and Bushco here in 2000 and 2004!

No, elections do not a democracy make. But they are a pre-requisite, you pompous windbag.

Watch for this meme to spread- you will find it rolling off the lips of left-wing pundits over the next 48 hours as they regroup and get back on message.

*** Update ***

Mark Steyn flays the meme alive:

“No one in the United States should try to over-hype this election,” warned John Kerry yesterday before embarking on the world champion limbo dance of Iraqi election under-hyping.

He has a point. One vote does not a functioning democracy make. To be a truly advanced, sophisticated democracy you need an opposition party that knows how to react to good news by sounding whiny and grudging and moving the goalposts. “The real test is not the election,” he declared, airily swatting aside 8 million voters. “The real test is…”

I dozed off at that point, so I’m unable to tell you what moved goalposts the senator inserted. But no doubt they involved, as they always do, the Bush administration needing to “reach out” more effectively to involve the “international community”. “International community”, by the way, doesn’t mean Tony Blair, John Howard, the Poles, Japan, India, Fiji, et al but Jacques Chirac and Kofi Annan, a pantomime horse in which both men are playing the rear end. But, in an advanced, sophisticated democracy, that’s how we define the “international community”: no matter how many foreigners are in your coalition, it’s unilateral unless Jacques is on board.

I could kiss him.

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22 replies
  1. 1
    Rachel says:

    Well, to a certain extent, he’s right. The votes can be thrown, certain ones “dissapearing”, etc. WE have that here! But if Iraq doesn’t try, it might as well be be another tyranny. At least they are using factors of democracy to fight and finally gain independence after 30+ years.

  2. 2

    An ABC News analysis contains this:

    But the Bush administration, by insisting on holding the elections in Iraq today despite widespread violence and misgivings, may not advance the cause of freedom and democracy. Elections are not synonymous with democracy and, unless care is taken, they could play into the hands of antidemocratic forces.

    Meanwhile, Time Magazine seems to have found the new party line. First, the election was a success but Bush doesn’t deserve any credit for it because he opposed holding elections:

    But even as President Bush claimed vindication for his Iraq strategy in the spectacle of millions of Iraqis braving terror and intimidation to go to the polls, the real author of Sunday’s election Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani confined himself to a simply thanking voters for turning out, and expressing regret that his own Iranian birth prevented him from joining them. It may be easily forgotten in the post-election spin that Sunday’s vote was not the Bush administration’s ideaquite the contrary. The U.S. had never intended for Iraqis to democratically choose the body that would write their new constitution; Washington had envisaged an election only after a constitution had been written by a body appointed by, and under the tutelage of the U.S.

    And second, the election was a referendum on the question of asking the Americans to leave Iraq post-haste:

    But whatever the precise makeup of the government, much of the campaigning to the extent that there was anyby the major parties presented voting as a means of ending “the occupation,” the unflattering shorthand used by Iraqis across much of the political spectrum (including members of Allawi’s own cabinet) to describe the U.S. presence. Opinion polls continue to show that a majority of Iraqi voters want the U.S. to leave immediately after the election, and a new government, whatever its makeup, will be expected to respond to that sentiment.

    Thus it’s OK to cheer for the election because it was a triumph of Iraqi anti-Americanism and a major black eye for Bush.

  3. 3
    Thomas says:

    So what Steven? Should Time and ABC celebrate democracy by throwing bullshit our way?

  4. 4

    Thomas, that’s what they in fact did.

  5. 5
    Kimmitt says:

    It’s not particularly antiamerican to not want US troops occupying you and administering martial law.

    I mean, I don’t want US troops occupying us and administering martial law, and we speak a common language.

  6. 6

    You guys come up with a truly murderous insurgency, and it can be a reality.

  7. 7
    Kimmitt says:

    You guys come up with a truly murderous insurgency, and it can be a reality.

    Is that a bizarre threat or just a total non-sequitur?

  8. 8
    Paul says:

    Of course to think that we are occupiers only, and not liberators as well, is the only way these buffoons can maintain their delusions.

    It was the “occupiers” who removed the tyrannical regime, thus liberating the Iraqis from the iron grip of dictatorship. It is the occupiers who are allowing the slow but steady transition to a free Iraq with a representative government.

    The insurgency is doomed. The Iraqis have a newfound sense of pride in being able to participate in the selection of their own governmental process. Nobody watching the Iraqis on Sunday can deny how passionate they are about right to vote, how precious they find that which we take for granted. The insurgents represent nothing more than the elements that are striving to strip that power from the Iraqi population, and as their own security forces increase in strength and effectiveness they will root them out and crush them.

    Bush is right about the universal desire to be free. Too bad the left will never get this, as they have always emphasized the primacy of the collective over the rights of the individual. They are as doomed as their Iraqi insurgent counterparts, although it will probably take a generation to be rid of the last grey ponytail.

  9. 9
    Ernest Brown says:

    These moronic fascism-loving jackasses are willfully ignorant of history and human decency.

  10. 10
    tugboat says:

    This is apropos of nothing, but I just wanted to mention that Eric Alterman is the ugliest man I’ve ever seen.

  11. 11
    Huck says:

    tugboat–

    I’ll see your Eric Alterman and raise you a James Wolcott.

  12. 12

    Is that a bizarre threat or just a total non-sequitur?

    C), Michael. As hard as it may be for you to hold more than two ideas in your head, there are in fact more than two possibilities.

  13. 13
    Kimmitt says:

    As hard as it may be for you to hold more than two ideas in your head,

    Oh, come now. For example, right now I think you’re a jackass, ignorant, and a self-righteous twit. And those are just the first three.

  14. 14
    TJ Jackson says:

    I see Kimmit gives us another insight into his education and upbringing.

    Actually I think the Iraq will have mastered the arts of democracy to the troll’s satisfaction when they can run elections with the honesty and aplomb that we witness in Seattle, Cincinatti, St Louis, Chicago, and San Francisco.

  15. 15
    Kimmitt says:

    I see Kimmit gives us another insight into his education and upbringing.

    Two t’s, bud. Just like the Brigadier General. It’s on the screen in front of you, and if that’s too hard, try the magic of copy/paste.

  16. 16
    derek says:

    Way to hit him where it hurts KimmiTT.

  17. 17

    Oh, come now. For example, right now I think you’re a jackass, ignorant, and a self-righteous twit. And those are just the first three.

    And correct on all three! Still, one has to wonder why you seemed limited to just the two ideas on our last exchange. Given that there are only a couple of choices, I figured either intentional dishonesty (unflattering) or stupidity (perhaps less unflattering). Do you have a third choice to offer, now that your horizons have expanded?

  18. 18
    Kimmitt says:

    Still, one has to wonder why you seemed limited to just the two ideas on our last exchange.

    Those were the only two that seemed to fit. I mean, there was the possible implication that the American occupation somehow postdated the insurgency which arose as a result of the American occupation — and that somehow this had anything to do with the fact that people do not, in general, enjoy living under martial law — but that was so bizarre that it just got filed under “non sequitur,” and I left it at that.

    Basically, I figured there was a flattering option and an unflattering option, and I left it to you which one you felt like endorsing.

    now that your horizons have expanded?

    For the record, this was choice. Details make perfection, and perfection is no detail.

  19. 19

    If you’re quite through putting arguments in my mouth, here’s what I was saying:

    It just may be possible that the quality and duration of the occupancy has a wee bit to do with the insurgency. If you’re attempting to justify the actions of people who deliberately kill civilians as a legitimate and acceptable backlash against the occupation, you’re morally bankrupt.

    Now, you may completely disagree with this, but preemptively assuming my argument and contemptuously dismissing it prior to even laying eyes on it is simply bad form. Not to mention dishonest debating.

  20. 20
    Kimmitt says:

    It just may be possible that the quality and duration of the occupancy has a wee bit to do with the insurgency.

    It didn’t even occur to me that this was your point, since even if there had been no insurgency*, Iraq would still be under US military rule, and that would still be something people don’t want.

    If you’re attempting to justify the actions of people who deliberately kill civilians as a legitimate and acceptable backlash against the occupation, you’re morally bankrupt.

    No, I cannot accept them, but I am aware of the fact that there is no centralized command structure for the insurgency and that a great deal of their efforts go toward attacking military or police targets, and those are legitimate actions. Of course, whether a person is killed in a legitimate or illegitimate action has no bearing on the grief and loss of victims’ loved ones.

    *A physical impossibility, for the record.

  21. 21

    Iraq would still be under US military rule

    How on earth can you say this? Are you still clinging to the empire theory?

  22. 22
    Kimmitt says:

    How on earth can you say this? Are you still clinging to the empire theory?

    Wait, wait — are you actually contending that the US occupation of Iraq would have concluded before now if there had been no insurgency (or if the insurgency had restricted itself to US military targets, or if the insurgency had been of a nonviolent form)? This seems extremely unlikely to me, as it would still have taken quite some time for us to construct an Iraqi government and train a police force and military capable of keeping both domestic and international peace. During that time, we would still be occupying the country.

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