The Central Front In The War On Stupid Semantic Tricks

Former Kos headliner Hunter has an important diary about one of those irritating rhetorical tricks that war defenders never seem to get tired of using, be it Peter Beinart or Glenn Reynolds or some random board warrior:

More and more, I’m seeing pro-war figures look for a healing, of sorts, between those who supported the Iraq War and those who decried it. But this healing seems to take exactly one form — the pro-war pundits perhaps begrudgingly admitting their errors, but simultaneously continuing to dismiss opponents of the Iraq War as being against it for supposedly shallow or insincere or offensive reasons.

Surprisingly often people arguing about Iraq end up arguing about semantics, so let’s talk about semantics.

People can point out that Hunter’s diary is an angry document as if somehow anger disqualifies an opinion. Why shouldn’t he be? Iraq war supporters smeared skeptics as pacifists and as America-hating appeasers of terrorists who didn’t take the War on Terror seriously. Better bloggers than myself, rightwingers with sizable readerships, fly into an angry rage over smaller provocations than that. It’s a normal response to being maliciously misrepresented for the sake of scoring cheap political points. Let’s look at the most common bullshit points:

Pacifist

Any Iraq skeptic who who spent 2002 and 2003 online will remember hours spent trying and failing to explain how opposing Iraq does not necessarily make you a pacifist. Inevitably the logic comes down to this: lefties who oppose war are pacifists, opposing this war makes you a leftie who opposes war and therefore you are a pacifist. One needs a veritable grab bag of fallacies to float this bark, from accident (most lefties are pacifists, you are a lefty so you are a pacifist) to hasty generalization (I can name lefties who were pacifists, therefore lefties are pacifists) yet on and on it goes. If an argument holds no water without appealing to at least one fallacy then we can safely move on.

Liberals Hate America

Correction, Noam Chomsky hates America. International A.N.S.W.E.R. seems to hate everything in existence. Pretending that these doofuses have anything to do with “the left” in aggregate requires yet another trip to the hasty generalization well. Sorry kids, try again.

Liberals don’t care about fighting terrorists.

You may not be aware that the overwhelming majority of America supported invading Afghanistan. Who knew? I honestly can’t think of anybody who thought that it was a bad idea to take down the people who attacked us and the regime who harbored them. So did liberals suddenly stop caring about fighting terror in between one war and the next? It doesn’t make very much sense. I’m sure that somebody shed a tear when we knocked over the Taliban but given the overall level of support you cannot tie these fringe actors to “the left” without an obvious hasty generalization fallacy.

I have noticed that war defenders these days will often get angry if you suggest that we invaded Iraq because of WMDs that they didn’t have or al Qaeda connections which didn’t exist. For the sake of argument let’s give that point of view the benefit of the doubt and acknowledge that we invaded Iraq in order to free its terrorized population. That leaves an extremely tenuous link to “terror,” does it not? Either we invaded Iraq because of its connections to terror (that would be Zarqawi, who was holed up in independent Kurdistan and easily bombable, and monetary payments to bombers who threatened Israel and not us) or else it has only an indirect connection at best with the War on Terror. If you go with the latter then you simply cannot claim that one must take Iraq seriously in order to earn some precious Serious About Terror (R) certificate.

It seems amazingly difficult for certain people, Peter Beinart included, to acknowledge that many of us perceived an Iraq war as a counterproductive distraction from fighting the people who actually attacked us. It seems like a simple enough proposition to get across, but go ahead and try it with your favorite war defender. It won’t scan. If I had to psychoanalyze (and why not? I’m a blogger) just imagine what would have happened if folks like Beinart, Glenn Reynolds, Fox News and thousands of allied keyboardists had acknowledged that people standing against the Iraq war might also be reasonable people with reasonable motives. Hysterical, unserious people and folks who actively hate America you can dismiss. Heck, you probably should. On the other hand dismissing reasonable people without listening to them makes you look like an asshole.

I expect some people to get mad when I point out that they dishonestly excluded Iraq war opponents from the national discourse for selfish reasons. Good. Anger is a reasonable reaction to having your character thrown into question.

***Update***

At Glenn Greenwald’s Barbara O’Brien asks a relevant question:

How many times do we have to say we are not against surveillance as long as it’s done lawfully before it sinks into a rightie brain? And are there numbers that go that high?

This is not a small point. If somebody cannot bring him or herself to represent the opposition honestly then there seems to be little point in talking, since the second party in the “conversation” isn’t really you but the malicious voices insidethe person’s own head. Apparently Captain Ed’s malicious voices oppose any sort of terrorist surveillance, in which case I’m perfectly in agreement with him – thank god the voices in Ed’s head are not running the country. Given a three-way choice between the Republicans, Captain Ed’s voices and the Democrats I would still pick the Democrats.

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234 replies
  1. 1
    ppGaz says:

    Not sure where I fit in now, Tim. I was a non-pacifist who loves America and would personally have gone Osama-hunting if it were possible …. who opposed the Iraq war from the first mention of its prospects in 2002 … on the grounds that (1) if Saddam had WMDs he was not out to use them beyond his borders because it made no sense, (2) Saddam was a thief but hardly a worse thief than a lot of the dictators we’d befriended over the years — including him, (3) Iraq could not be turned into a liberal democracy now for the same reason that Britain couldn’t straighten it out 75 years ago … the Iraqis don’t like each other, and (4) the history of the Arab world was devoid of any successful democracies …. for a reason, and Iraq was a pretty unlikely place to try to create an exception.

    So, The Right has had a hard time pigeonholing me. I’ve been too patriotic, too right, and too consistent.

    Hell, I’m such an oddball, I’ve had to hide out here at this obscure blog :-)

  2. 2
    Tim F. says:

    ppGaz, your poisitions sound like mine, except that I compressed (3) and (4) into the general point that spreading Democracy at the point of a gun simply isn’t our job, and even if it was we had better uses for those guns. I think that you fit in with the rest of us just fine.

  3. 3

    I opposed the Iraq war from the beginning because I thought it was doubtful that Saddam had WMDs, and it was very unlikely that Saddam and al Qaeda had any connections at all. But most importantly, I opposed the war because I knew that they would fuck up the peace. There was never any question about our military destroying Saddam’s pathetic army. But I knew that once the obviously bad guys had disappeared, we would be up a creek.

    I would have loved to have been proven wrong.

  4. 4
    ppGaz says:

    I would have loved to have been proven wrong.

    Same here. For the troops, for the US, for Iraq, for the Middle East, and for a lot of good reasons.

    Sadly, Colin Powell was right, and the NeoWrongs are still trying to justify their collossal mistake.

  5. 5
    Ancient Purple says:

    Oddly, I don’t remember more than a handful of people being against our toppling of the Taliban regime in Afghanistan. I know I wasn’t and neither were even the most ultra-liberal of my circle of friends. Everyone wanted OBL caught and punished.

    I have never heard a single person say that they oppose the War on Terror. However, Iraq is not the War on Terror and never has been, except in the small, pea-sized brain of that pathetic idiot we have in the White House. Well, him and his vile minions.

    Hunter’s rant was well needed and spot on target. Too bad the screamers on the right are too ignorant to know the difference between being against the war in Iraq and being for the war on terror.

  6. 6
    Pooh says:

    Sadly, I was among those duped into at least ambivalence by the WMD claims – I wasn’t convinced especially the nuclear aspect, but I figured that they had better info than I did, etc. And I remember hoping every day that they would in fact find them, with that hollow feeling in the pit of my stomach as the prospect of having been bamboozled grew and grew.

    It was about this time that I really started paying attention to the ‘unpatriotic’ rhetoric, and I started to become somewhat angry myself – as Daniel Davies said, good ideas tend not to need lies and demagoguery to find support.

  7. 7
    srv says:

    Your enemies aren’t on the other side of the planet. They’re right here, on the keyboard virtually across from you. They are the people who collectively wet their pants on 9/11.

    If this “war” has done anything, it has shown just how reason-deficient large swaths of America are, and how easily manipulated they are. These reason-retarded now have a voice via the blogosphere, and you won’t be able to fix them any more than you can fix Ol’ Yeller. There is no meeting them half-way or any-way.

    No doubt Brian or Darrell will trot around with their “keep saying that, and the Dems will lose in Nov!”. Awesome, I say. I’m all for the “conservatives” failing harder and more spectacularly. They can’t fail enough for me. If The People don’t finally stand up and flush your values down the toilet bowl of history, then we deserve what we get.

  8. 8
    Perry Como says:

    And I remember hoping every day that they would in fact find them

    They are hidding in Iran, guarded by gay, Mexican, Muslim immigrants.

  9. 9
    Andrew says:

    Heh, Bush said “activist judges” in his radio address today. I thought that those disappeared in November 2004, along with the color-coded terror alert system.

  10. 10
    Ancient Purple says:

    They are the people who collectively wet their pants on 9/11.

    Of course. They aren’t really interested in saving America. They are only interested in saving their own lives.

    Tragically, they can’t see the stupidity in the ideology that says: you can only save your civil rights by giving them up.

    That mentality works great for theological dogma, but not so much for everything else.

    As a side note, I am completely amused by the fact that the so-called “religious right” who claim to keep Christ in their hearts and are forever saved from the fires of Hell are the first to pee their pants when the terror alert goes to orange.

    Obviously, their version of Jesus isn’t quite so comforting after all.

  11. 11
    GOP4Me says:

    You liberals don’t want to take notice of all the progress that’s going on in Iraq. That’s why you choose to speak as if though Operation Iraqi Freedom were some sort of failure. Well, saying it doesn’t make it so. This war has been a resounding success on every level.

    Okay, the government needs some work. I’ll concede that, freedom is not always a precise science. Give it some time, though. And what about the rest of it? Consider the Iraqi school system. We build schools in that country every day, but do you hear a word about them? Nope. Nor do you hear about the hospitals, police stations, or the well-trained, well-armed Iraqi Army we’re assembling. Instead, all you hear about are a few dead-enders and Qaedists trying to fight freedom and losing handily. The Iraqi people are turning them in. Tipsters are abounding, US losses are down, and Islamists are dying in record numbers. Who are you people to say that freedom isn’t on the march? By any objective reading of the history of this conflict, you were, and are, pro-Saddam.

    What about the Iraqi stock exchange? Under Saddam, capitalism was severely curtailed, and freedom was ground under an iron boot. Now, the Iraqis are free to invest in a wide range of companies, and the cornerstone of every successful democracy has been laid.

    As for this:

    If this “war” has done anything, it has shown just how reason-deficient large swaths of America are, and how easily manipulated they are. These reason-retarded now have a voice via the blogosphere, and you won’t be able to fix them any more than you can fix Ol’ Yeller. There is no meeting them half-way or any-way.

    This goes to show why the Democrats keep losing. The American people know that there’s no issue more important than freedom, and that fighting for freedom is the only way to keep it. They know that the Democrats like to crow about freedom, but don’t understand that sometimes you need to fight for it. Afghanistan was a skirmish, but Iraq was the main battle in the struggle for freedom, and on this score most of the Democrats came up sorely lacking. The American people punished them accordingly in 2002 and 2004, and will probably punish them again in 2006, 2008, 2010, 2012, and 2016, by which point the Democratic Party will probably have split into moderates who’ve sensibly joined the GOP, and Naderites who’ve either sought their fortunes in Canada and Cuba, or actively betrayed America and been sent to Guantanamo. I’m not gloating about this, as it makes me sad that we have to have one-party rule in this country. If America had an opposition party that talked sense on any issue, I might even be willing to vote for it occasionally. But sadly, the Democratic Party has not done anything particularly sensible since the days of Harry Truman. And the American people are on to this fact, and it drives you moonbats crazy to know it.

    I understand your anger, but I don’t care. Think of how angry the Iraqis would feel, if Saddam were still in power and lining his palaces with hidden nuclear weapons right now (as he probably would have been if we hadn’t permanently halted his WMD research). Think of how angry the American people would feel, if our only warning of Saddam’s WMDs came in the form of a mushroom cloud. Think of how angry freedom-loving peoples throughout the world (and perhaps other worlds, too, if it’s not too presumptuous to speculate on them; our satellite-transmitted films and news clippings possibly serve as an inspiration to freedom-loving species throughout the galaxy) would be if this great edifice to God and liberty, America, decided to crawl before the despot Saddam and his cohorts at the UN and beg once again for permission to play hide-and-go-seek with Saddam’s nuclear weapons. I cannot envision the outcome of such a hideous nightmare reality, yet you moonbats are angered because others rightly point out that leaving Saddam in power was your only solution to the problem. Well, the American people felt otherwise, and luckily the GOP was there to fight for freedom and liberty in the halls of government and in the sands of Iraq.

  12. 12
    GOP4Me says:

    They are hidding in Iran, guarded by gay, Mexican, Muslim immigrants

    Nonsense. There are no Mexicans in Iran, and judging by the Iranian policy of oppression toward Bahai and Jews, I doubt they let homosexuals guard their nuclear weapons program.

  13. 13
    Ancient Purple says:

    Heh, Bush said “activist judges” in his radio address today. I thought that those disappeared in November 2004, along with the color-coded terror alert system.

    Andrew,

    One of the writers over at dKos had a great quip in response to the President’s address today:

    Since the President is so against activist judges, when can we expect Bush to make his stand against Loving v. Virginia being overturned.

    Heh.

  14. 14
    ppGaz says:

    You liberals

    Well, that’s about all of your post I need to read.

    Are you taking your rhetoric lessons from Darrell, now?

    I understand your anger, but I don’t care.

    Go away.

  15. 15
    GOP4Me says:

    Go away.

    I thought you saiod you wouldn’t read any more, trickster! If this is all you could find to respond to, I take it you’ve conceded my central point: Iraq is on the up and up, and liberals keep lying about it.

  16. 16
    Punchy says:

    This war has been a resounding success on every level.

    Funniest thing I’ve read all day.

    Now, the Iraqis are free to invest in a wide range of companies

    If they’re smart, they’ll invest in companies making body bags and coffins, and US Marine Detectors.

    Well, the American people felt otherwise, and luckily the GOP was there to fight for freedom and liberty in the halls of government and in the sands of Iraq.

    OK, this is spoof, right? No one could be this unintentionally funny, could they?

  17. 17
    Andrew says:

    Since the President is so against activist judges, when can we expect Bush to make his stand against Loving v. Virginia being overturned.

    I expect that Bush’s response would be something along the lines of, “Yeah, heh heh, I’m loving Virginia every time I go and visit the Pentagon. Heh heh.”

    I take some small solace in the fact that in 20 or 30 years, most people will look back and see the anti-gay Darrells of the world as exactly equivalent to the segregationists against interracial marriage. That, or we will live in a Road Warrior-esque post-apocalyptic nightmare after Bush nukes Iran and China gets pissed.

  18. 18
    GOP4Me says:

    OK, this is spoof, right? No one could be this unintentionally funny, could they?

    The only thing that’s funny is how wrong you kooks are on the subject of Operation Iraqi Freedom. (Well, and on just about everything else, for that matter…)

  19. 19
    r4d20 says:

    Correction, Noam Chomsky hates America. International A.N.S.W.E.R. seems to hate everything in existence. Pretending that these doofuses have anything to do with “the left” in aggregate requires yet another trip to the hasty generalization well.”

    It seems to me that the extremists always get to set the tone of the debate.

  20. 20
    r4d20 says:

    “But most importantly, I opposed the war because I knew that they would fuck up the peace. ”

    LOL. I told myself “Its ok. We learned from Vietnam”. Then I watched them make stupid move aafter stupid move and within a year I had decided that this administration was incapable of winning this war.

  21. 21
    GOP4Me says:

    It seems to me that the extremists always get to set the tone of the debate.

    The problem with moonbats is that if there ARE any reasonable ones out there, their voices get lost in the fog of Chomskyites, Trotskyites, and Saddamists. Occasionally, you find a sensible Democrat- Joe Lieberman, Zell Miller- but their voices are quickly stifled by the group-thinking peacenik treehuggers encompassing them.

    It’s really a sad state of affairs that the party of Andrew Jackson has become the party of Hillary Clinton. Andrew Jackson once shot a man in the groin because he insulted his wife; can any of you picture a leading Democrat doing something like that today? Not even Howard Dean on a screechy day would have the courage for such a deed.

  22. 22
    KC says:

    I’m just tired, frankly, of hearing “war, war, war” and “fear, fear, fear” all the time. The one-time mixed feelings about the Iraq war I had are long gone and I’m just sick of the whole goddamned mess. I may vote Republican for governor (I’m in California), but I sure as hell won’t be voting Republican for Congress this election.

  23. 23
    ppGaz says:

    Iraq is on the up and up

    I don’t know what an “up and up” is, but right now it’s in the middle of a civil war, and the American presence there is largely irrelevant. Already the “Prime Minister” is bashing Americans in his public comments, although you have to feel for the bastard, he can’t actually govern anything. Do some research and see if the PM can even get the electricity turned on. This matters, since the summer in Iraq is known to be a little on the warm side.

    You spoofs are running about a year behind current events in your material now. Try to catch up.

  24. 24
    Punchy says:

    Andrew Jackson once shot a man in the groin because he insulted his wife; can any of you picture a leading Democrat doing something like that today?

    Where I’m from, they’d call that assault with a deadly weapon, aggravated assault, or attempted murder. So, no, I don’t see any Democrats doing that. Please encourage, however, as many Republicans as possible to start shooting at people. Maybe we can get them all in prison, instead of just ~40% of ’em.

  25. 25
    D. Mason says:

    Its kind of sad that this blog is absolutely crawling with spoofs.

  26. 26
    MAX HATS says:

    ‘Skeptical’ is exactly how I would describe myself in the lead up to the war.

    “Saddam is willing to use his WMD’s at a moments notice!

    Aaaaaaand the war will be painless.”

    Now wait a minute, won’t he gas our soldiers? Wouldn’t that be less than painless? But asking that, like raising any other issue with the to-be-war, led to a cavalclade of invective, usually with words like “America-hating” and “Saddam-lover” thrown in.

    WMD’s, no WMD’s, sixteen words – throw it off the table. What I recall was a war argued for in fundemtally dishonest terms. There were good arguments to be made for invading Iraq, but by and large, they weren’t the big arguments. What it came down to was this: did you want to invade Iraq, or do you want to kiss Osama on the lips?

    As for how the war has since progressed, the term “fruit of the poison tree” could find no better demonstration. It’s impossible to convince the American people we need to tough it out in Iraq, because everything the American people have been told up to now has been lies. After “agents met with Mohammad Atta,” “we cannot wait for a mushroom cloud,” “dead enders,” and “last throes,” you can’t turn around and suddenly tell it like it is. An entire fictional reality for Iraq has been constructed, and it can be neither discarded nor can it support the weight of further bullshit. We’re at an impasse, and everyone who supported the war under consciously dishonest terms put us here.

  27. 27
    Brian says:

    Anger is a reasonable reaction to having your character thrown into question.

    If you walk like a duck, and quack like a duck, well, you’re a duck. If you’re a pacifist, find endless reasons to defend our enemies yet find endless reasons to find fault with America, then you absolutely deserve to have your character thrown into question. If you don’t like this, then tough shit.

    GOP4Me is correct, the reasonable liberal voices are drowned out amongst those like Tim F. and the Kossacks, purveyors of anger anti-Americanism at any cost.

  28. 28
    DougJ says:

    I was against the war, but I wasn’t very strongly against it. I feel bad about that and a lot of my friends have told me I was an idiot not to see what a bad idea it was; for the time being, I feel that my having been suckered somewhat about Iraq disqualifies me from commenting on foreign policy. That’s why I don’t comment in threads on Iran very much.

    That’s also why I find the hubris of ass holes like Beinart stunning. Frankly, I despise the New Republic. I hate Peter Beinart, Andrew Sullivan, Joe Lieberman and the rest of the “liberal hawk” crew in a way that I could never hate George Bush. That may sound strange and I can’t explain it.

  29. 29
    MAX HATS says:

    Trotskyites, and Saddamists

    Fake.

    I read everything from Hugh Hewitt to Freep (I even posted there briefly), and no one, not the most mouth-breathing goose-stepping “imprison the press” zealot has ever seriously referred to democrats as “Trotskyites and Saddamists.”

  30. 30
    DougJ says:

    I don’t think Noam Chomksy hates America. Noam Chomsky is a provocative critic to be sure, but I’m very much against smearing him. We ignore dissident voices at our own peril. That goes for some on the right as well — I think that much of what Pat Buchanan says is valid (though his flitation with anti-Semitism repels me), even if I don’t agree with it.

    It’s important to distinguish between those whose positions seem extreme to us (Chomsky, Bucahanan, the Club For Growth guy, many libertarians) and those who simply talk out of their ass (Ann Coulter et al.).

  31. 31
    MAX HATS says:

    If you walk like a duck, and quack like a duck, well, you’re a duck. If you’re a pacifist, find endless reasons to defend our enemies yet find endless reasons to find fault with America, then you absolutely deserve to have your character thrown into question.

    How can one who supported the war in Afghanistan be a pacifist?

  32. 32
    DougJ says:

    Actually it’s the neocons who are/were Trotskyites.

  33. 33
    GOP4Me says:

    Where I’m from, they’d call that assault with a deadly weapon, aggravated assault, or attempted murder. So, no, I don’t see any Democrats doing that. Please encourage, however, as many Republicans as possible to start shooting at people. Maybe we can get them all in prison, instead of just ~40% of ‘em.

    It was during a duel. Back when America was a freer country, we allowed those. Open a history book sometime.

    GOP4Me is correct, the reasonable liberal voices are drowned out amongst those like Tim F. and the Kossacks, purveyors of anger anti-Americanism at any cost.

    Exactly. And what’s sad is that their groupthink is so self-contained, it’ll never let them see it.

    I read everything from Hugh Hewitt to Freep (I even posted there briefly), and no one, not the most mouth-breathing goose-stepping “imprison the press” zealot has ever seriously referred to democrats as “Trotskyites and Saddamists.”

    I’ve posted these charges on this blog before, and on my own blog, scrutator.net. So obviously you don’t read everything, Mr. Know-It-All.

  34. 34
    GOP4Me says:

    Actually it’s the neocons who are/were Trotskyites.

    Spoken like a true spoof. I forget which side of the aisle you’re even on anymore, DougJ. Are you a liberal spoofing conservatives, or is it the other way around?

  35. 35
    CaseyL says:

    Yeah, I thought the spoofs were amusing for a while, but at this point it just drags down the conversation.

    The subject of The Angry Left is one I’ve found insulting for a very long time. Anger is the only sane and proper response to Bushism in particular and Right Wing-ism in general.

    I’m still not over 9/11. I still think Bush and Rice ought to face prison, at least, for their reckless endangerment of human life; for all the warning signs they didn’t follow up, the memo they didn’t bother reading, the demotions of anti-terrorist experts, and the defunding of anti-terrorist programs.

    And that’s just 9/11. Put that together with the Iraq War casualties, and the Katrina deaths, just about everyone in the Bush Admin, quite frankly, deserves to be hung.

  36. 36
    MAX HATS says:

    I’ve posted these charges on this blog before, and on my own blog, scrutator.net. So obviously you don’t read everything, Mr. Know-It-All.

    You’re a fake. A wanna-be Michael Savage. Pity the world only needs one, eh? Don’t quit your day job.

  37. 37
    Punchy says:

    It was during a duel. Back when America was a freer country, we allowed those. Open a history book sometime.

    I agree. Let’s allow duels again. It’ll make America freer, somehow. AFter glancing in my history text, I see that we used to have slavery. Maybe we could bring that back, too. I bet that’ll quadruple our freeness.

  38. 38
    ppGaz says:

    I forget which side of the aisle you’re even on anymore, DougJ.

    If you keep talking to yourself, we’re going to have to get out the DSM-IV here.

  39. 39
    D. Mason says:

    I never supported the war in Iraq, but I did believe there was a chance of accomplishing something worthwhile. I believe that chance was immediately after the military vs. military phase of the conflict. If we had shifted seamlessly into diplomacy when the insurgency began it seems there was atleast a chance to show the Iraqi people the personal benefits they could expect from a representative form of government. Unfortunately diplomacy is not Georges’ thing.

    I say representative form of government because, honestly, why would we want to force democracy on such a factionalized people. That’s asking for trouble. You don’t want mob rule in a society where the majority would be happy to see the minority exterminated. That’s the biggest problem *I* have with the “spreading democracy” meme.

    Unfortunately the Bush administration carried out the invasion in a very haphazard way. They failed to account for the centuries old hatred that exists between the various religious communities in Iraq. They failed to account for the hardiness and resolution that comes only from living in near constant conflict. They also failed to account for the spirit and determination of the Iraqi people. Add this to a general disregard for the suggestions of our own experianced generals and you have a recipe for disaster.

    George Bushs’ own father knew why conquering Baghdad was such a sticky situation so George can’t claim that the opinions weren’t there or available to him. He chose to ignore them and now we are all paying for it.

    To me, the rhetoric Tim mentions in his post is the “smoking gun” in regards to the willfulness of the deception. Dubya knew what he was doing and the fact that his administration smeared anyone who voiced even the slightest disagreement speaks volumes about the level of dishonesty they were willing to employ.

  40. 40

    The one that amazed me, back in 2003 when we were leading up to this.

    A wingnut coworker of mine said we had to be afraid. What if Saddam did have weapons and used them, was I willing to be responsible for thousands of people dying?

    I haven’t had a chance to ask him yet how he feels about being responsible for the deaths of thousands of americans over this failure.

  41. 41
    ppGaz says:

    I bet that’ll quadruple our freeness

    I think we need to start calling it “freedominess” now. By the time Bush gets done with it, that’s all we’ll have left.

  42. 42
    DougJ says:

    Remember the great conversation we had with Darrell about how many important neocons were Trotskyite in their youths? Darrell agreed that Irving Kristol was a commie (hard to deny, he was at the 3rd international) and that Wolfowitz and Perle were Trostkyites in their early 20s. Then he turned around and said there was no evidence of a connection between Trotksyism and neoconservatism. It was surreal.

  43. 43
    DougJ says:

    A wanna-be Michael Savage

    Is he a fake?

    In all seriousness, I have a certain fondness for the scrutators. They seem well-meaning but misguided, like Don Surber. There’s no shame in that. They’re not so different from John.

  44. 44
    ppGaz says:

    It was surreal.

    Only if you think the conversation was about the topic as you described it.

    Instead, when you are talking with Darrell, the topic is you and your errant philosophy. Since the latter is an established fact, the ups and downs of the conversation you are describing, don’t matter. The only thing that matters is that Darrell was right — about you — when the conversation started.

    If you get this right, then talking with Darrell isn’t surreal at all, it’s perfectly understandable.

    I am Darrell, and I approve this message.

  45. 45
    Andrew says:

    Come on guys, I think the right-wing just needs the chance to govern with a real conservative in the Whitehouse, not the compassionate liberal flip-flopper who is in there right now.

  46. 46
    MAX HATS says:

    As long as the tripple threat of Reid, Hollywood and the MSM have their way, I don’t see how anyone could say Bush has been given a fair shot.

  47. 47
    ppGaz says:

    As long as the tripple threat of Reid

    Scrutator is a much better spoofsite than yours, dude.

  48. 48
    Par R says:

    Some moron says:

    I still think Bush and Rice ought to face prison, at least, for their reckless endangerment of human life; for all the warning signs they didn’t follow up, the memo they didn’t bother reading, the demotions of anti-terrorist experts, and the defunding of anti-terrorist programs.

    Any fool that writes such crap is not to be taken serious in even the slightest fashion.

  49. 49
    Ancient Purple says:

    the reasonable liberal conserative voices are drowned out amongst those like Tim F. and the Kossacks Brian and Darrell, purveyors of anger anti-Americanism cowardice and using the Consitution in lieu of toilet paper at any cost.

    There. Fixed that right up for you, Brian.

  50. 50

    I don’t know how you liberals manage to breathe with your heads stuck so deeply in the sand. Then again, you do manage to talk out of your asses; I suppose there could be some kind of air-exchange mechanism stuffed up in there too. Whatever. I’m sure some lefty science ninny will come along now to explain how that’s physiologically impossible, right before he puts me to sleep with some crapola lecture about how global warming is going to ravage the planet.

    You wanna know what’s really going to ravage the planet, kooks? Yeah, that’s right – the creeping menace to the North. The tundra-sucking terrorists that killed Santa. You can deny, deny, deny all you want, but now there’s proof of the Canuckistani threat. Suck on that, bitches!

  51. 51
    SeesThroughIt says:

    OK, this is spoof, right? No one could be this unintentionally funny, could they?

    Yeah, he’s a spoof. Still kind of a beginner, but he’s slowly improving.

  52. 52
    ppGaz says:

    Any fool that writes such

    The pot makes a funny.

  53. 53
    Tim F. says:

    GOP4Me is correct, the reasonable liberal voices are drowned out amongst those like Tim F. and the Kossacks, purveyors of anger anti-Americanism at any cost.

    It is telling that Brian sides with the guy who calls every single person whom he disagrees with a ‘kook.’ You have a dishonest streak, Brian, which is a double shame because you’re a relatively smart person. Hang on to your rhetorical safety blankets, big guy.

  54. 54
    D. Mason says:

    The pot makes a everything funny.

    Fixed.

  55. 55
    demimondian says:

    What makes me very sad is that Brian and GOP4ME don’t understand that their joke is completely unfunny in this context.

    Look, guys, has it dawned on you that we have been called cowards and traitors by the right you’re trying to spoof? I know it’s hard to imagine, but…gosh, that hurts. It isn’t funny to me when you call me a kook, or a moonbat, particularly when I stood for America all along.

  56. 56
    ppGaz says:

    You have a dishonest streak, Brian, which is a double shame because you’re a relatively smart person spoof.

    There is no charge for this editing service.

  57. 57
    DougJ says:

    As long as the tripple threat of Reid, Hollywood and the MSM have their way, I don’t see how anyone could say Bush has been given a fair shot.

    That is so spoofy that it makes me wonder if Brian, GOP4Me, and Par R are really spoofs. I say with the full knowledge that I write most of Par R’s and Brian’s spoofs.

    I kind of like Brian and GOP4Me, though. They’ve got style. That goes a long way with me.

  58. 58
    ppGaz says:

    They’ve got style

    Dior had style. Those two have gall.

    Gall Style

  59. 59
    Bob says:

    Please provide us with an example of Chomsky’s hatred of America,please.I’ve always thought his criticism of the government and it’s foreign and domestic policies were the sincere beliefs of someone challenging his country to be better by using the same yardstick we measure others by.

  60. 60
    DougJ says:

    Do you ever think that the lot of us should take over other blogs? Or maybe have our own blog called Pale Fire? Is http://www.palefire.com still available>

  61. 61
    Punchy says:

    Or maybe have our own blog called Pale Fire?

    What kinda blog name is that? Needs to be catchy and witty, like “Deciduous Jackalopes”, or we could spoof Mr. Cole and call it “Balloon Jews” or “Bah Luge Noose”

  62. 62
    SeesThroughIt says:

    I kind of like Brian and GOP4Me, though. They’ve got style. That goes a long way with me.

    I dunno, I think GOP4Me has a ways to go…he’s still very raw, ya know? I do think it’s good that he’s sometimes spoofing the Explosively Angry Republican, meaning that in the necessary mix of anger and obstinance, he leans heavily toward anger. That’s very fertile territory, but he hasn’t quite gotten it down yet, and it seems like he sometimes retreats from it in favor of a more traditional style–which is fine, but the traditional style demands brevity, which GOP4Me hasn’t really gotten yet. He has been getting better, though.

    By the way, I’d nominate Gay Atheists for Mandatory Abortion for a blog name, but it’s too unwieldy for a URL.

  63. 63
    ppGaz says:

    Gay Pacifist Muslim-Mexican Atheists for Mandatory Abortion.

    How’s that?

  64. 64
    demimondian says:

    I don’t know if enough people on BJ have actually read the original Nabokov to get the Pale Fire joke.

    (Given that it’s Friday, could it be “pale ale fire”, instead…)

  65. 65
    demimondian says:

    How about “Truthiness or Consequences”?

  66. 66
    srv says:

    Tendril Fingerings

  67. 67
    demimondian says:

    “Jackalope Stmapede”

  68. 68
    ppGaz says:

    Anyone notice … not a single non-spoof righty on this thread.

  69. 69
    canuckistani says:

    I was going to chime in and say I supported the war in Afghanistan (where we also find the French, Germans and us Canadians) and opposed Iraq, but GOP4ME has poisoned the thread so thoroughly that I don’t really see any point to contributing.

  70. 70
    Brian says:

    You have a dishonest streak, Brian

    I don’t think that’s fair, Tim. If you want to see our competing sides come to some understanding about this war, and I think that you do by the nature of this post, then you might at least consider how what people like me see as concrete evidence of anti-Americanism in your rhetoric is counter-productive to that understanding coming to pass.

    The Left rambling on about America’s innumerable “crimes”, while ignoring those of other countries, some of which are literally out to destroy our way of life, then trying to escape this by claiming adherence and respect for our Constitution, and support for the troops, and that you’re only practicing your valuable right to dissent, does not pass unnoticed by conservatives as the rhetorical sleight-of-hand that it is.

  71. 71
    Brian says:

    Okay, I give…….

    Someone, anyone, explain to me what a jackalope is, and what a spoof is. Are these BJ slang terms?

    Have fun with my ignorance, but please explain these words to me while you’re at it.

  72. 72
    Andrew says:

    Well done, Brian! Spoofing ignorance of spoofing. I like the layering. You are so meta it hurts.

  73. 73
    Ancient Purple says:

    Have fun with my ignorance,

    As you wish…

    There is this thing. You may have heard of it. It is called “Google.” It is your friend.

  74. 74
    John Redworth says:

    Surprisingly enough, I was one of those against the war in Iraq, for the war in Afghanistan and nearly wet myself on 9/11… I am not one of those blame America first, hate Bush no matter what or even save a tree instead of a person… but a regular Joe who didn’t like what I was being told about Iraq and became even more jaded as the original reasons fell like leaves from a tree in the fall… yet, even though I was against the war in Iraq I have never advocated cut and run or a timetable… the idea or reasons for being in Iraq are moot right now while our troops are getting shot at… I hope for democracy in Iraq since it would be shame for those who died there to die for no real reason…

    Even though I stand for these things and do not fit in to the normal “lefty liberal unAmerican traitor” BS that is pushed around, I have still had my patriotism questioned for daring to disagree with the supposed reasons we went there in the first place as well as disagreeing with our CiC during a war… simply put, I have started to ignore the extremists who pound their chests and demand all to obey their wisdom… I do push the idea of listening to others but when all that comes out of their mouths/fingertips is venom, there doesn’t seem to be a point any longer… if I want to be insulted, I have friends that can do it to my face instead of hiding behind the safety of a keyboard…

  75. 75
    PeterJ says:

    Gop4Me spoofed:

    They know that the Democrats like to crow about freedom, but don’t understand that sometimes you need to fight for it. Afghanistan was a skirmish, but Iraq was the main battle in the struggle for freedom, and on this score most of the Democrats came up sorely lacking.

    Yes, sometimes you have to fight for your freedom. But the one you need to fight for your freedom isn’t Osama bin Laden or Saddam Hussein.

  76. 76
    GOP4Me says:

    I’m not a spoof, I’m an American with viewpoints. Serious viewpoints, which you kooks have never addressed. I like the way you always sidestep the issue, though. Iraq is doing fine, and you know it, but rather than debate me on the merits of this fact, you always choose to stoop to attacking the messenger. I believe in the Bush Administration, therefore I’m “spoofing.” Obviously, anyone who doesn’t agree with you is “spoofing.” Why do you assume this? Is it impossible in your minds for anyone to disagree with you and support our President? Not too long ago, 51% of voters disagreed with you. Or were 51% of voters “spoofing”, too?

    You claim you want to have a discussion, but it’s impossible to start one if you won’t take me seriously. Even Brian gets this treatment from you, and he laid the facts of the situation out far more eloquently and concisely than I could ever do just a few posts above this one. Yet you ingrates accuse him of “spoofing,” too.

    This doesn’t hurt my feelings or anything, I’ve got a pretty thick skin. But it’s a telling indictment of the self-styled “tolerance” of the self-styled “reality-based community,” that’s for sure.

  77. 77
    Ancient Purple says:

    I’m not a spoof, I’m an American with viewpoints.

    I am convinced you are a spoof, and, quite frankly, I am bored with them. They do nothing to further the conversation and all they do is make sure I don’t have to take an Ambien before bedtime.

    That being said, I feel like venting, so I will engage your banter.

    You may be “an American with viewpoints.” Bully for you. So am I. But my patriotism is questioned because I don’t agree that we should ignore the Constitution and I refuse to kiss Bush’s ass and, like that deranged idiot Hugh Hewitt, believe he is the best president this nation has ever had.

    You claim you want to have a discussion, but it’s impossible to start one if you won’t take me seriously.

    Why should I take you seriously? Besides being a spoof, you have already made your stand: King George can do no wrong. Ever. Without exception. He could rape your mother and you would claim it to be a necessity.

    I, on the other hand, gave W the benefit of the doubt. While I had some concerns, I was convinced that Bush had done his due diligence and Saddam had WMD and could possibly be a threat to this nation. I did, however, know full well that the crap about the connection between 9/11 and Iraq was just that: pure bullshit.

    It is also difficult to take you seriously when you whine and complain about how we call you a spoof because you “believe in the Bush Administration” and then do exactly the same thing by calling people kooks, traitors and anti-American because they don’t “believe in the Bush Administration.” Hypocrisy much?

  78. 78
    PeterJ says:

    Not too long ago, 51% of voters disagreed with you. Or were 51% of voters “spoofing”, too?

    No.

  79. 79
    Tom in Texas says:

    Iraq is doing fine, and you know it,

    Ok, you are either a spoof or an idiot.

    No one thinks things in Iraq are fine right now. Bush himself would never say something so preposterous. There are 2,500 dead Americans and untold thousands of Iraqis. We are currently investigating allegations supported by videotape that we slaughtered innocent shildren as they slept. The Prime Minister claims we indiscriminately attack civilians daily. Dozens die every single day. How you can possibly find this “fine” or “on the up and up” is astonishing (yet you claim you are serious).

    Perhaps you believe that things in Iraq will be fine when the people see the power of an independent court as both Saddam and American soldiers are sentenced for their crimes against innocents. Perhaps you believe that things will be fine once Zarqawi has ended his nightmarish jihad. To claim that things are currently just hunky dory because of a stock exchange and a new schoolhouse when all this is going on is just preposterous — and incidentally, your anger at the story of rebuilt schools being ignored in favor of news like Haditha rings hollow when a reporter explains that they are asked by those schools not to publicize their opening or even announce their locations out of fear that suicide bombers will have a visible public target.

  80. 80
    GOP4Me says:

    I am convinced you are a spoof, and, quite frankly, I am bored with them. They do nothing to further the conversation and all they do is make sure I don’t have to take an Ambien before bedtime.

    Then take it up with DougJ, why don’t you. What do I care what you think of spoofs?

    You may be “an American with viewpoints.” Bully for you. So am I. But my patriotism is questioned because I don’t agree that we should ignore the Constitution and I refuse to kiss Bush’s ass and, like that deranged idiot Hugh Hewitt, believe he is the best president this nation has ever had.

    You publicly question the competence and integrity of our President during wartime. Question your patriotism? You bet I will. To do anything less would be irresponsible. If it hurts your feelings, call Amnesty International.

    Why should I take you seriously? Besides being a spoof, you have already made your stand: King George can do no wrong. Ever. Without exception. He could rape your mother and you would claim it to be a necessity.

    Bush wouldn’t rape my mother without a darn good reason, first of all. Secondly, if I were a spoof, I wouldn’t like George Bush, so you’ve negated whatever point it was you were trying to make in the first place. Nice going. With brains like this at the helm, it’s no wonder the Democrats control America… oh, wait.

    I, on the other hand, gave W the benefit of the doubt. While I had some concerns, I was convinced that Bush had done his due diligence and Saddam had WMD and could possibly be a threat to this nation. I did, however, know full well that the crap about the connection between 9/11 and Iraq was just that: pure bullshit.

    In other words, you halfheartedly backed the job, while questioning the Vice President’s knowledge of national security. What do you want for this, the Congressional Medal of Freedom?

    It is also difficult to take you seriously when you whine and complain about how we call you a spoof because you “believe in the Bush Administration” and then do exactly the same thing by calling people kooks, traitors and anti-American because they don’t “believe in the Bush Administration.” Hypocrisy much?

    Well, at least a kook and a traitor has serious beliefs that they stand by, however kooky/treasonous they may be. What can you say for a spoof? Ask your buddy, DougJ.

    You people stink. Trying to have a conversation with you is like ramming one’s head into the wall until the world goes black. Then you WONDER why I get frustrated and call you kooks?

  81. 81
    Baron Elmo says:

    Bush wouldn’t rape my mother without a darn good reason, first of all.

    Does “because his pecker was hard” count?

  82. 82
    John S. says:

    GOP4Me-

    When attempting to be a spoof hoping to engage in reasonable discussion, it is best to not open every salvo with:

    You people stink.

    Some moron says:

    By any objective reading of the history of this conflict, you were, and are, pro-Saddam.

    The only thing that’s funny is how wrong you kooks are

    First off, it undermines whatever credibility you want to establish as not-a-spoof. Second, it has a tendency to put people on the defensive, which means that they go on the offensive. And third, thanks for proving Tim’s point by throwing out every scurrilous meme he mentioned.

  83. 83
    RonB says:

    Brian,

    GOP4Me is correct, the reasonable liberal voices are drowned out amongst those like Tim F.

    Careful, dude. Agreeing with a spoof is gonna get you called…well, a spoof.

    If you walk like the ducks and quack like them…

  84. 84
    RonB says:

    Though there is this nagging feeling I get that maybe less than 10 of the posts above aren’t spoofs…

  85. 85
    Slide. says:

    the spoofs are ruining this blog. When done occassionally and with some wit perhaps it would be moderately intertaining, but this dreary, transparent, humorless spoofing is just off putting to most of us. So where are the true belivers? Are there anymore left? Macbuckets? Come on bucket boy, show us another Iraq poll which convinces you everything is just dandy in the fertile cresent these days. I need a good laugh.

  86. 86
    John S. says:

    Come on bucket boy, show us another Iraq poll which convinces you everything is just dandy in the fertile cresent these days.

    You must have missed his recent re-write of history:

    the Coalition invaded and ousted Saddam and Sons. Which was the point, after all…

    Any atttempt to remind him that the actual point of the invasion – as was sold to the American public – was to protect us from a mushroom cloud and to punish those responsible for 9/11, is deemed as:

    bongwater-alternate-reality stuff that shows a remarkable ignorance of even the basics of recent history

    Which is why we ALL prefer true believers like Mac to hapless spoofs. Truth is so much funnier than fiction (stranger, too).

  87. 87
    ppGaz says:

    You people stink

    John Cole: “You insufferable pricks.”

    OMG, you are being written by John Cole?

  88. 88
    Mr Furious says:

    Brian-

    Spoof: A parody tool that uses a fake (but often hilariously accurate) character to mock a certain viewpoint. Think Stephen Colbert and the Colbert Report.

    Around here, GOP4Me is exhibit A. There is NO way I will be convinced that that clown is for real. The only difference is Colbert’s screaming eagles graphics and laughing studio audience make the paraody obvious. The blog commenter’s “spoofiness”, if you will, is more subtle…

    For you to cite GOP4Me, and side with him, is pretty much on par (or Par R) with Tom Delay’s unwitting use of Colbert to bolster his positions.

    Did you watch Colbert’s speech at the Correspondant’s dinner and cheer, “Yeah, take that liberal elite!” or, were you in on the joke?

    I, and others, around here have actually engaged you in some good debates. So, as Tim mentions above, for you to hitch your wagon to views that are either so ridiculous as to be parody OR so extreme as to be shameful, is disappointing for those of us wishing to have an honest debate.

    The best case scenario for you in this case is that you are a well-intentioned conservative being played for a fool. Otherwise you are either a spoof yourself or too much of a jackass to be taken seriously.

    I don’t want to get too personal, or judgemental here, but it’s awfully hard when it is the first arrow out of your quiver.

    Hope that clears things up for you.

  89. 89
    DougJ says:

    Just so you know, I am not writing GOP4Me or Brian or Par R. I’m sure Par is a spoof, but I’m not writing it. As for GOP4Me and Brian, if I had to guess, I’d guess that Brian is a real right-winger and that GOP4Me is someone from Protein Wisdom.

  90. 90
    ppGaz says:

    I had to guess, I’d guess that Brian is a real right-winger

    On the chance that you are Brian (no, I don’t buy your disclaimer, sorry, no offense, etc) …. I have $5 that says Brian is a spoof.

    The evidence that I’ll present in Spoof Court is pretty convincing. I won’t review it here and give you … er, him …. any ideas. But let’s just say, it’s going to be an open and shut case.

    Anyway, a fiver says Brian = Spoof.

  91. 91
    Par R says:

    DougJ is my gay brother and I wish he would stop mentioning me in his ever increasingly silly-ass comments. He has been nothing but a continuous embarrasment to our family since he was caught BJ’ing the football team during halftime three years ago.

  92. 92
    ppGaz says:

    DougJ is my gay brother and I wish he would stop mentioning me

    Give it up, DougJ. You blew your cover on this one a long time ago.

  93. 93
    ppGaz says:

    I’m not a spoof, I’m an American with viewpoints. Serious viewpoints, which you kooks have never addressed

    “I have never had spoof with that womanizer, DougJ.”

  94. 94
    Punchy says:

    You publicly question the competence and integrity of our President during wartime

    My bullshit meter just pegged out. Show me the Declaration of War from Congress. I want to see where Congress declared war on either Afghanistan or Iraq.

    Until then, we’re not officially at war. So yes, I’ll question Bush on competence.

  95. 95
    Sojourner says:

    It’s looking more and more like Iraq will be an Islamic theocracy. Which bodes poorly for the more than 50% who are female.

    Only a moron would believe that Iraq is better off with its women being treated as less then second-class citizens.

  96. 96
    Larry says:

    During the Iraq runup, I voiced the the opinion to several friends who supported the invasion, that Saddam’s posession of WMD and the means to deliver them was a ruse because Israel is quite sensitive to annihilation, and would have eliminated that threat well before it was operational.

    Osirak demonstrated that the Israelis are uninterested in responding from beyond the grave and care more about survival than approval.

    None of my friends had a reasonable answer.

  97. 97
    ppGaz says:

    Only a moron would believe that Iraq is better off

    Well, unless I have missed something, John Cole is still on record with “better off without Saddam.”

    It was a lame refrain even when it was fresh and new. It relies entirely on “ends justify means” rationalization. It was factually unsupportable. It was a rallying cry at best, and a grotesque manipulation and misrepresentation at worst. “The world” has never been better off with this clusterfuck in progress, and Iraq has descended into the predictable civil war which means that not even the Iraqis are arguably “better off”. If better off means daily violence, a ruined economy, no electricity to cool your house in the blazing summer, and a dangerous and intolerable occupation …. well, you get the idea.

    The “better off” theme will be the last whimper of the last fool who clings to the last vestige of deluded insistence that the war was a good idea, or that continuing it is necessary and proper.

    Iraq is now in the throes of a civil war and the American presence there is not relevant to that civil war, for the simple and obvious reason that we have no control over it whatever, nor over its outcome.

  98. 98
    Parlo says:

    PPGaz missed that there were bio weapons. The lab was run by a woman who was freed by the Iraqi courts the day ‘Time’ had some intersting pictures.

    As far as who started the war, you have to check out CIA. Plame was WMD at CIA at it was leaked just before the war. CIA taking advantage of Bush and using the war, if not starting it.

    If you follow what we all have been through, you might see Plame and CIA there using America to justify what they have done. America is being used to justify mistakes, like Plame and the CIA; sorry, that’s how they work.

  99. 99
    ppGaz says:

    By Nir Rosen
    Sunday, May 28, 2006; B01

    Every morning the streets of Baghdad are littered with dozens of bodies, bruised, torn, mutilated, executed only because they are Sunni or because they are Shiite. Power drills are an especially popular torture device.

    I have spent nearly two of the three years since Baghdad fell in Iraq. On my last trip, a few weeks back, I flew out of the city overcome with fatalism. Over the course of six weeks, I worked with three different drivers; at various times each had to take a day off because a neighbor or relative had been killed. One morning 14 bodies were found, all with ID cards in their front pockets, all called Omar. Omar is a Sunni name. In Baghdad these days, nobody is more insecure than men called Omar. On another day a group of bodies was found with hands folded on their abdomens, right hand over left, the way Sunnis pray. It was a message. These days many Sunnis are obtaining false papers with neutral names. Sunni militias are retaliating, stopping buses and demanding the jinsiya , or ID cards, of all passengers. Individuals belonging to Shiite tribes are executed.

    Under the reign of Saddam Hussein, dissidents called Iraq “the republic of fear” and hoped it would end when Hussein was toppled. But the war, it turns out, has spread the fear democratically. Now the terror is not merely from the regime, or from U.S. troops, but from everybody, everywhere.

    At first, the dominant presence of the U.S. military — with its towering vehicles rumbling through Baghdad’s streets and its soldiers like giants with their vests and helmets and weapons — seemed overwhelming. The Occupation could be felt at all times. Now in Baghdad, you can go days without seeing American soldiers. Instead, it feels as if Iraqis are occupying Iraq, their masked militiamen blasting through traffic in anonymous security vehicles, shooting into the air, angrily shouting orders on loudspeakers, pointing their Kalashnikovs at passersby.

    Today, the Americans are just one more militia lost in the anarchy.

    Read it and weep

  100. 100
    Punchy says:

    Power drills are an especially popular torture device.

    To anyone that’s seen “Hostel”, this has to make you just cringe…

  101. 101
    feral1 says:

    Chomsky, that america-hating doofus, was invited to address the cadets at West Point last month. At the end of his address the applause was warm and enthusiastic. This speaks well for the cadets and the institution. Liberals in the U.S. need to engage Chomsky’s ideas, rather than reflexively dismissing one of the most respected and important intellectuals of the last 50 years, because they are scared of being tarred as “radical lefties”.

  102. 102
    Tulkinghorn says:

    As rude and pointless as it is to jump in at the tail end of this spoofy and reflexive thread with a sustantive response to Tim F., I think he underestimates the frivolousness and bad faith of recent winger and Bush-apologist arguments.

    The structure of the argument goes like this:

    You leftists were right about everything:
    war in Iraq:
    -predicated on false pretenses;
    -alienates our allies;
    -strengthens Al Qaeda;
    -wastes our military resources;
    -weakens our military forces;
    -costs way too much financially compared to the attenuated and minimal benefit of refroming Iraqi government;
    -obscenely enriches business cronies of members of the administration;

    These were all predicted by the anti-war left. As a pro-war centrist Dem. I thought they were being cynical, conspiracy minded, and not taking terrorism seriously enough.

    As it ends up, I was full of sh!t, not them. As special bonuses that exceeded even the most fevered nightmares of the looney left we get:

    -torture now used indiscrimately as part of policy;
    -Iraq completely ruined, not by the invasion but by this administrations’ indifference,
    -25 american soldiers killed occupying Iraq for everyone killed conquering Iraq;
    -the systematic debasement and waste of military discipline and moral, all to no discernable military or diplomatic benefit;
    —and for extra, super-bonus credit– the administration wants to repeat its success by invading Iran.

    All of us who supported this president have been shown to be fools. But, since these things are all bad for the US, and “The Left” is gleeful to be proven correct in their predictions, they are happy to be benefiting from the US’s misfortunes.

    That makes them traitors and domestic enemies.

    In short: “you were right, I was wrong, but being right means that you are an asshole, so I win, no tag-backs, etc.”

  103. 103
    DougJ says:

    Tulkinghorn — I wasn’t exactly pro-war, but I wasn’t very anti-war and I tended to mock my friends who were strongly anti-war. And I now feel exactly the same way that you do.

    The difference between people like us and people like Peter Beinart is that we care about what is true, not just what is rhetorically effective.

  104. 104
    ppGaz says:

    Just had to quickly post this, because I am on my way out the door …. and could not believe this when I heard on the tv moments ago:

    C. Rice on Face the Nation: (topic, can Iraq’s government actually govern?):

    “(Prime Minister) Maliki has declared a state of emergency …. so he is taking care of the situation.”

    There you have it, the view from inside the bubble. The “government” has it under control, because it declared a state of emergency.

  105. 105
    Brian says:

    Iraq was better off with Saddam in power? According to whom….. septuagenarian ppGaz, our resident Shiite who suffered under the thumb of Saddam??

    Tulkinghorn is a prime example of the self-congratulatory nature of the Left. No wonder you’re all a perfect fit with celebrity culture, another group that fawns over itself and tells its members how great and beautiful they are, when in truth, they’re mental midgets who would never be trusted with anything beyond driving an automobile.

    And, Tim, where is that post decrying the rights of terrorists being trampled in that Canadian raid? Surely, the civil liberties of some Americans were violated in that dragnet, no? I have to go to the bathroom now, where I’ll wipe my ass with my Constitution-on-a-roll toilet paper, and will check back with you later.

    If we have to resort to tracking and arresting terrorists by monitoring them via telephone or the internet, then the terrorists have already won, folks, even if we stopped their plots to kill thousands of innocent people and score a victory in its war against the West and a way of life that you folks take comfort in as you trash the governments that protect said way of life.

  106. 106
    Sojourner says:

    Iraq was better off with Saddam in power?

    Ironically, if Iraq becomes a fundamentalist Islamic country, the sad reality will be that most Iraqi women will be far worse off than they were under Saddam.

  107. 107
    Brian says:

    Mr. Furious,

    Thanks for the explanation. I’m still awaiting one for “jackalope”. That HAS to be BJ slang.

    All,
    Chekitowt! He’s gearing up to be served another loss for his party. It’ll be Gore or Clinton on the ticket for the Dem’s in ’08.

  108. 108
    ppGaz says:

    Brian, you need to get a new handle. You are taken for spoof now. Pretending you never heard of a jackalope?We know you have a computer, therefore you can find this.

    It is generally believed that the legend of the jackalope was inspired by sightings of rabbits infected with the Shope papillomavirus, a common but temporary fibromatosis which causes the growth of horn- and antler-like tumors in various places on a rabbit’s head and body.[1]. The many illustrations of horned hares shown in scholarly works by European naturalists in the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries (engraved plates for the Encyclopédie Méthodique, 1789, for example), were probably also inspired by papillomavirus infected rabbits.

    Don’t try so hard to look earnest, it just makes you look more spoofy than you already do.

    And BTW, 59 is not “septuagenarian.” Vocabulary mistakes are another spoof indicator.

  109. 109
    ppGaz says:

    Iraq was better off with Saddam in power?

    On balance, and weighed against the ten years of shit they will have gone through by 2013, for most Iraqis, yes.

    That’s not a measure of what a great guy he is, it’s a measure of the bottomless pit of shit that we’ve thrown that country into, without a prayer of getting them out.

    As Rosen said, the worst is yet to come.

  110. 110
    DougJ says:

    Tulkinghorn is a prime example of the self-congratulatory nature of the Left.

    You nitwit — Tulkinghorn just said he was WRONG about Iraq. How is that self-congralutatory?

  111. 111
    ppGaz says:

    I think he meant “self conflagellatory.”

  112. 112

    It is generally believed that the legend of the jackalope was inspired by sightings of rabbits infected with the Shope papillomavirus, a common but temporary fibromatosis which causes the growth of horn- and antler-like tumors in various places on a rabbit’s head and body.

    Heh. Don’t believe everything you read on Wikipedia, kids.

    Here’s the real story: I originally starting wearing the horns & antlers to scare off the goddamn pelt-hunters who were after me during the Little Ice Age.

    As it turned out, they also helped me pick up a lot of trim – the whole “bad boy” thing, you know. No penicillin back then, bitches, so you can guess the rest: we were passing around STDs like a bong on Willie Nelson’s tour bus.

    So your nozzlehead scientists have it completely backward: the horns & antlers came first, disease-infested rabbits came later.

    So there you go, Bri. Jackalopes are a lefty invention, just like global warming, evolution, and gravity.

  113. 113
    Ancient Purple says:

    I have to go to the bathroom now, where I’ll wipe my ass with my Constitution-on-a-roll toilet paper, and will check back with you later.

    Thank God you finally admit it.

    Admitting you don’t care about the Constitution is the first step to recovery.

    In the meantime, I suggest rubber sheets or Depends just in case the terror alert code goes to orange before your journey is complete.

  114. 114
    slickdpdx says:

    I guess we all have to choose our battles.

  115. 115
    ppGaz says:

    Okay, the FTN transcript is online now.

    From today’s show:

    Schieffer: Madame Secretary .. let me just challenge your … basic statement. …. They’re losing … 40, 50 people a day there. Just this morning 26 people pulled off a bus and shot. They can’t pick somebody to run … the defense department. Yes, we have a “government in place” but … I would have to ask the question, what difference does that make?

    Rice: … I would note that Prime Minister Maliki, even in the absence of a minister of interior and minister of defense … which they will have and they will have good ones because they’re going about this in a most careful way .. but even the absence of filling those ministries he has been working with General Casey and with Azl Khalilzad on a security plan for Baghdad. He has declared a state of emergency in Basra to deal with the situation there. This is a government that is more confident, that has real basis for action, because it is a national unity government. And I think it is far too soon in a matter of less than a month to say that this government can’t deal with the problem.

    Now folks, you go and read the article I linked to earlier. You go and read the mainstream news coming out of Iraq in the last week, and today. And you read carefully the words of Rice today, and tell me with a straight face that her answer is anything more than a mealy-mouthed, spun, sorry-assed pack of lies and manipulative deflections from the truth. Every sentence of hers is a lie in one fashion or another, and in most cases, it’s several lies all wrapped together. Her last sentence, quoted by me, is a lie-in-your-face way of saying that the Iraq government has no control of its country, and in case you missed the news of the daily bus shootings and bombings, the US forces there have no control over the country either. The place is a violent shitstorm at this point. American forces are mostly interested now in keeping themselves from getting killed and trying to stay out of the line of fire between the two sides in a civil war that is just at the beginning of its ugly run. Just as Mr. Rosen described it, above. Just as your lying eyes will tell you if you bother to look around. Just as we predicted FOUR YEARS AGO that it would turn into. Just as any college student who had read the history of the region could have forseen and warned these idiots in Washington to avoid.

    How that lying bitch can sit there on tv and do this, is beyond me. I can’t even imagine the depth of moral bankruptcy neccessary to sit there on that show and say that crap. I thought I had seen it all during the era of Nixon and Agnew, but this is a whole new ballgame. This is telling the biggest possible lie over and over again, taken to a whole new level.

  116. 116
    ppGaz says:

    Oh, sorry, on the blockquote, punctuation is mine. Edited very slightly for clarity only.

  117. 117
    ppGaz says:

    Shieffer: But it has taken them since December to get this far.

    Rice: To have a government of national unity has taken some time. But to have a government of national unity is at the core of solving the problems that the Iraqis … face

    .

    Ponder and savor that last comment by Rice. A “government of national unity.” Read that over and over again, before and then after each days summary of news from Iraq, and just savor the true nature of her comment. A “government of national unity.”

    People being summarily executed for having a Sunni first name, as a matter of routine, and she is talking about a “government of national unity.”

    Just keep thinking about that. Think of it when you find yourself just how far into lies an American government can go, and still get on a tv show without being stoned in the street on the way into the studio.

  118. 118
    ppGaz says:

    “find yourself wondering”

    And now, back to your regularly scheduled spoofapalooza, already in progress.

  119. 119
    Brian says:

    Tim’s not very responsive today. Maybe he’s out mountain biking. Wonder if, when Islamists take over the West as the result of liberals’ protecting the terrorist’s civil liberties, they’ll let him mountain bike without wearing a turban and dragging homosexuals behind him.

  120. 120
    ppGaz says:

    The sunshine of last weekend, splendid as it was for a cookout, could not eradicate the dark reality that we keep sending our troops into a quagmire. At Arlington National Cemetery on Memorial Day, the president read a poignant letter that First Lt. Mark Dooley, killed by a bomb last September in Ramadi, wrote to his parents. What Mr. Bush did not say was that now, nine months later, insurgents rule Ramadi. As he spoke at Arlington on Monday, the Pentagon was preparing to announce that 1,500 emergency reinforcements were being sent from Kuwait to Anbar province, home to Ramadi, Haditha and Falluja, to try to stanch the bleeding.

    There is more than a little something wrong with this picture. The president reiterated his Plan for Victory in Iraq as recently as his appearance with Tony Blair on May 25: “As the Iraqis stand up, we’ll stand down.” He said then that the Iraqis were “taking more of the fight” and “more territory” and “more missions.” The State Department concurred: Iraqi security forces are participating in “more than 80 percent of operations.”

    So let’s do the math. According to our own government, more Iraqis are standing up — some 263,000 at latest count. But we are not standing down. We are, instead, sending in more American troops. Where have we seen this shell game before?

    There was another plan for victory, too, you may recall. On the third anniversary of the invasion, in March, the president celebrated the new strategy of “clear, hold and build” by citing the example of Tal Afar, “today a free city that gives reason for hope for a free Iraq.” Last month 17 people were killed by a suicide bomber in an outdoor market there. The Tal Afar mayor has told The Los Angeles Times it will be at least three years before Iraqi security forces can secure his city of 150,000 without American help. To clear, hold and build in, say, Baghdad, with its population of six million, we’d have to throw in countless more troops still.

    “When you open up the strategy for victory, there’s nothing inside,” Representative John Murtha, a Pennsylvania Democrat and Marine veteran, argued in a speech last month. What the White House has always had instead of a strategy for victory is a strategy for public relations. That, too, fell under siege over Memorial Day weekend.

    Call the P.R. strategy “attack, clear and hold”: the administration attacks the credibility of reporters covering the war and tries to clear troubling Iraq images from American TV screens so that popular support might hold until a miracle happens on the ground. This plan first surfaced when the insurgency exploded in spring 2004: Ted Koppel was pilloried by White House surrogates for reading the names of the fallen on “Nightline” and Paul Wolfowitz told Congress that “a lot of the press are afraid to travel very much, so they sit in Baghdad and they publish rumors.”

    Upon being told that 34 journalists had been killed in the war up to that point, Mr. Wolfowitz apologized, but the strategy was never rescinded. Mr. Bush routinely chastises the press for reporting on bombings rather than “success” stories like Tal Afar. His new top domestic policy adviser, Karl Zinsmeister, has called American war correspondents “whiny and appallingly soft,” and he declared last June that “our struggle in Iraq as warfare” was over except for “periodic flare-ups in isolated corners.” That’s the news the administration wants: the insurgency is always in its last throes. We’d realize that this prognosis was “basically accurate,” Dick Cheney has explained, if only the non-Fox press didn’t concentrate on car bombs in Baghdad.

    Now more than 70 journalists have died in Iraq, more than in any modern war, including two members of a CBS News crew killed in the bombing that injured the correspondent Kimberly Dozier. This tragedy also took place on Memorial Day, which Ms. Dozier was honoring by trying to do one of those Iraq “good news” stories that the administration faults the press for ignoring: the story of an American soldier who, despite having been injured, was “fighting on in memory of those who have fallen,” as she had e-mailed colleagues. Once that good-news story died in the bombing, so, one imagines, did the administration strategy of pinning the bad news in Iraq on the reporters who risk their lives to hang in there. Or so, in the name of simple decency, we might hope.

    Those reporters, at least, have the right to leave. Not so the troops. General Batiste’s observation about the “almost surreal” disconnect between the home front and the war is damningly true, even in Washington. As the violence in both Iraq and Afghanistan spiraled before and after Memorial Day, Congress kept its eye on its own ball. In a bipartisan display of honor among thieves, Democrats and Republicans banded together to decry the F.B.I. for searching the office of a Democratic congressman, William Jefferson, who had been accused of hiding $90,000 in questionable cash in his freezer. Even more ludicrously, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales — a man who damaged our troops incalculably by countenancing an official policy of torture — finally threatened to resign on principle. The principle he was standing up for, however, was not the Geneva Conventions but the F.B.I.’s right to raid Mr. Jefferson’s office.

    Contrast these clowns with J. W. Fulbright, a senator who convened hearings to challenge presidents from both parties during Vietnam, changing the nation’s course. The current Senate majority leader, Bill Frist, has proudly put on this month’s legislative agenda constitutional amendments to stop same-sex marriage and flag burning. “Right now people in this country are saying it’s O.K. to desecrate that flag and to burn it,” he said on Fox News last Sunday, though it’s not clear exactly who these traitors are. A Nexis search turns up only one semi-recent American flag-burning incident — by a drunk and apparently apolitical teenager in Mr. Frist’s home state, Tennessee, in 2005.

    The marriage-amendment campaign will be kicked off tomorrow with a Rose Garden benediction by the president. Though the amendment has no chance of passing, Mr. Bush apparently still thinks, as he did in 2004, that gay-baiting remains just the diversion to distract from a war gone south.

    So much for the troops. For all the politicians’ talk about honoring those who serve, Washington’s record is derelict: chronic shortages in body and Humvee armor; a back-door draft forcing troops with expired contracts into repeated deployments; inadequate postwar health care and veterans’ benefits. And that’s just the short list. Now a war without end is running off the rails and putting an undermanned army in still greater jeopardy. “Today, the Americans are just one more militia lost in the anarchy,” Nir Rosen, who has covered Iraq since the invasion, wrote in The Washington Post last weekend.

    We can’t pretend we don’t know this is happening. It’s happening in broad daylight. We know that “as the Iraqis stand up, we’ll stand down” is fiction, not reality. We know from the Pentagon’s own report to Congress last week that attacks on Americans and Iraqis alike are at their highest since American commanders started keeping count in 2004. We know that even as coalition partners like Italy and South Korea bail out, we are planning an indefinite stay of undefined parameters: the 104-acre embassy complex rising in the Green Zone is the largest in the world, and the Decider himself has said that it’s up to “future presidents and future governments of Iraq” to decide our exit strategy.

    Actually, the current government of Iraq already is. On Thursday the latest American-backed Iraqi prime minister, Nuri Kamal al-Maliki, whom Mr. Bush is “proud to call” his “ally and friend,” invited open warfare on American forces by accusing them of conducting Haditha-like killing sprees against civilians as a “regular” phenomenon. If this is the ally and friend we are fighting for, a country that truly supports the troops has no choice but to start bringing them home.

    How much can you take, before you start to get really, really pissed off? An angel sent me the material above from a large East Coast newspaper’s website that inexplicably charges money to read that editorial piece, and I accidentally pasted it into this comment editor …

    In any case, like I said, how much can you stand? Are y’all ready to get out there and get some Dems elected to the House this fall and put a stop to this fucking insanity?

  121. 121
    Par R says:

    What a total piece of rubbish ppGaz put up here.

    The best thing that the citizens of the US can hope for right now is that the typical commenters one finds here are not representative of anything more than the lowest common denominator of American society. Clearly, most of them write as if they had been fully indoctrinated in all the latest anti-American rhetoric out of al Qaeda and their ilk. Hell, today we even find an acolyte of the notorious anti-Semite, Noam Chomsky, posting comments here. What next…front-page posts by Osama bin Laden himself?

  122. 122
    ppGaz says:

    the typical commenters one finds here are not representative of anything

    Mmmm, more and more, the majority view in this country, actually.

    Par now demonstrates Spoof Indicator Number 7, which is Total Kool-Aid Immersion. This is a step up from addiction to drinking Kool-Aid, and involves actually bathing in the beverage.

  123. 123
    Kimmitt says:

    GOP4Me really isn’t a spoof, in my opinion. His opinions are genuine. Scary but true.

    Anyways, the best way to deal with folks that have experienced breaks with reality is to ignore them. We’ve all taken subways and had to sit next to the crazy lady; this is no different.

  124. 124
    jaime says:

    Wonder if, when Islamists take over the West as the result of liberals’ protecting the terrorist’s civil liberties, they’ll let him mountain bike without wearing a turban and dragging homosexuals behind him.

    It seems the “Give Me Liberty of Give Me Death” mantra of the founding father of this country has been replaced by “Daddy save me. I’ll be hiding under my bed”

    Are you serious? Really? Islamists taking control of the American West? You stay under that bed, I’ll call you after the next election.

  125. 125
    ppGaz says:

    USA today May 2006:

    Do you approve or disapprove of the way Bush is handling the situation in Iraq?

    Approve 32 Disapprove 66 Unsure 1

    Which Party Can Handle Iraq Better?

    GOP 36 Dem 50

    Iraq war worth fighting?

    Yes 34 No 57

    War the right thing?

    Yes 40 No 59

    CBS/NYT: Can Bush successfully end war? No 67%

    Two major polls, with essentiall agreement: Approve of Bush’s handling of war / can he succeed? No, 67%.

    So I ask you, what are we waiting for? Is it time to elect some Dems to the House this fall and put and end to this clusterfuck? How much longer shall we sit by and let George Bush give America the finger?

  126. 126
    Sine.Qua.Non says:

    GOP4Me Says: What about the Iraqi stock exchange? Under Saddam, capitalism was severely curtailed, and freedom was ground under an iron boot. Now, the Iraqis are free to invest in a wide range of companies, and the cornerstone of every successful democracy has been laid.

    Since when did Capitalism become the “Cornerstone” of Democracy? You are going to have to show me where that is written in our founding documents. Oh, wait! That must be the OTHER Bush Constitutional Amendment besides the anti-gay amendment.

    Afghanistan was a skirmish, but Iraq was the main battle in the struggle for freedom…

    It is highly apparent you buy into the Bush fantasy. This is so far from the truth of the matter as to be laughable if it wasn’t so serious.

    Think of how angry the Iraqis would feel, if Saddam were still in power and lining his palaces with hidden nuclear weapons right now (as he probably would have been if we hadn’t permanently halted his WMD research).

    And, you believe Democrats are not sensible??? OMG

    This is even funnier if that were possible:

    GOP4Me Says:

    “They are hidding in Iran, guarded by gay, Mexican, Muslim immigrants”

    Nonsense. There are no Mexicans in Iran, and judging by the Iranian policy of oppression toward Bahai and Jews, I doubt they let homosexuals guard their nuclear weapons program.

    ROFL…I am having serious trouble containing myself here….really!

  127. 127
    Tim F. says:

    I don’t think that’s fair, Tim. If you want to see our competing sides come to some understanding about this war, and I think that you do by the nature of this post, then you might at least consider how what people like me see as concrete evidence of anti-Americanism in your rhetoric is counter-productive to that understanding coming to pass.

    The Left rambling on about America’s innumerable “crimes”, while ignoring those of other countries, some of which are literally out to destroy our way of life, then trying to escape this by claiming adherence and respect for our Constitution, and support for the troops, and that you’re only practicing your valuable right to dissent, does not pass unnoticed by conservatives as the rhetorical sleight-of-hand that it is.

    It sounds to me as if you want the right to question other people’s character but you take offense when somebody questions yours. I have noticed that you tend to take the most nefarious possible interpretation of whatever an opponent says, for example your claim that Al Gore promotes distorting the truth. Cardinal Richlieu once wrote:

    If one would give me six lines written by the hand of the most honest man, I would find something in them to have him hanged.

    Go looking for anti-Americanism and you will almost surely find it. Go looking for well-intentioned an reasonable people and you will most likely find those as well. In my opinion your dishonesty comes from a need, subconscious for all I know, to find nefarious motives behind people who disagree with you. Your declaring that I hate America is neither less offensive not less ridiculous than my considering you dishonest or, to be generous, unfair.

  128. 128
    Sine.Qua.Non says:

    Popcorn, Spoofs and a BJ … all on one Sunday afternoon. Could you ask for more?

  129. 129
    John Redworth says:

    You publicly question the competence and integrity of our President during wartime. Question your patriotism? You bet I will. To do anything less would be irresponsible.

    To me, this is one of the major problems with the so-called debate in which the mere questioning of the President is equated with unpatriotic talk… it is no different than questioning the patriotism of those who support the President as he wraps himself up in the term of “wartime President” to deflect criticism…

    As a country, we do not necessarily live by absolutes of “with us or against us” that has become the norm… I find it very hard to believe that you could locate any great number of Americans who support terrorism which is what this supposed war is against… this includes great numbers of the extremist left who play the “hate Bush” card at every chance…

    The idea of absolutism that is shown by chest pounding in support of the “wartime” President no matter what is paramount to the ideas of a dictatorship rather than a democracy… even in war, our President is not held above the standards of dissent… even in war, our President does not achieve god-like status or something along the lines of the fabled “cult of personality…”

    GOP4ME, I sense you are a real person and not a spoof… this bothers me in a sense that you have decided to avoid real discussion by following the typical name calling and discounting the ideas and intellect of others who do not follow your line of thinking…

  130. 130
    Punchy says:

    It sounds to me as if you want the right to question other people’s character but you take offense when somebody questions yours.

    The whole Republican modus operandi summed up in one neat sentence.

  131. 131
    RonB says:

    GOP4Me really isn’t a spoof, in my opinion. His opinions are genuine.

    So which poster are you on Scrutator?

  132. 132
    Sine.Qua.Non says:

    Brian Says: Tim’s not very responsive today. Maybe he’s out mountain biking. Wonder if, when Islamists take over the West as the result of liberals’ protecting the terrorist’s civil liberties, they’ll let him mountain bike without wearing a turban and dragging homosexuals behind him.

    Brian…you are fucking pathetic.

    PPGAZ: Good catch on Rice.

  133. 133
    Sine.Qua.Non says:

    PPGAZ: Par now demonstrates Spoof Indicator Number 7, which is Total Kool-Aid Immersion. This is a step up from addiction to drinking Kool-Aid, and involves actually bathing in the beverage.

    I thought it became brain fluid.

  134. 134
    Andrew says:

    GOP4Me was a great spoofer for a while, but it’s as if he really isn’t even trying anymore:

    I think the American people are reawakening to the grandeur of this wartime President, and that’ all for the best. We’re fighting WWIII here, not a game of dominoes, and this is not a good time to question the wisdom of the finest leader of our nation since Abraham Lincoln (if not the finest leader ever).

    This stuff is only barely believable if Hugh Hewitt says it.

    I like this new John Redworth character. A spoof of the moderate-center!

  135. 135
    Anderson says:

    Saddam is willing to use his WMD’s at a moments notice!

    Aaaaaaand the war will be painless.”

    Now wait a minute, won’t he gas our soldiers? Wouldn’t that be less than painless?

    Exactly. I’m reading Cobra II, and while on most days I think Bush/Cheney psyched themselves up into believing that Saddam had WMD’s, it’s impossible to square this with our indifference to rapidly securing the alleged WMD sites.

    Apparently, The Entire Justification For The Fucking War ran into Rumsfeld’s “look, I can invade Iraq with one arm tied behind my back,” and TEJFTFW lost.

  136. 136
    ppGaz says:

    I thought it became brain fluid.

    We are not sure that spoofs actually have brains. They may have “brainoids” which are brain-like constructs but we are not sure that they actually produce any thoughts.

    Or, they may simple be in a PKS, a Persistent KoolAid-y State. Perhaps scs has some insights.

  137. 137
    Perry Como says:

    They may have “brainoids” which are brain-like constructs but we are not sure that they actually produce any thoughts.

    Versus the Defenders, which severly lack cluons.

  138. 138
    SHT4Brains says:

    We really need a mandatory blog-spoofing clause in the flag-burning/gay-marriage amendment. Who’s with me?

  139. 139
    DougJ says:

    I like this new John Redworth character. A spoof of the moderate-center!

    I’ve been dying to do such a spoof. The trouble is, I actually hate people like Peter Beinart and the rest of the so-called moderate center and that impedes my ability to spoof them. I sort of like the right-wing nuts, the Surbers and such, so I can spoof them without trembling with anger. Not so the New Republic.

  140. 140
    DougJ says:

    I find it very hard to believe that you could locate any great number of Americans who support terrorism which is what this supposed war is against

    Do you think? What unbelievable pablum. If this is a spoof, it’s genius. I want to work this guy. Unless he’s serious, in which case I want to strangle him with my bare hands.

  141. 141
    rbl says:

    the notorious anti-Semite, Noam Chomsky

    Yes, because a Jewish Zionist who happens to believe in free speech, even for Holocaust deniers, must definately be an anti-semite. Yep

  142. 142
    Perry Como says:

    Freedomc, bithes!

    The instructions vary between neighbourhoods. Amiriya and Ghazaliya have the full menu, while others stress only 2 or more of them. So far, enforcing the hijab for women and a ban on shorts for men are consistent in most districts of western Baghdad. In other areas, women are not allowed to drive, to go out without a chaperone, and to use cell phones in public; men are not allowed to dress in jeans, shave their beards, wear goatees, put styling hair gel, or to wear necklaces; it is forbidden to sell ice, to sell cigarettes at street stands, to sell Iranian merchandise, to sell newspapers, and to sell ring tones, CDs, and DVDs. Butchers are not allowed to slaughter during certain religious anniversaries. Municipality workers will be killed if they try to collect garbage from certain areas. Private neighbourhood generators are banned in a few areas. And the last I heard is that they are threatening Internet cafés and wireless providers.

    – An armed group stopped a minibus full of high school female students. 2 girls, who had their hair exposed, had their heads shaven clean as an example for others.

    – 4 young men wearing shorts near a local bakery at Mansour were all shot in the legs.

    – A young high school student at Ma’moun was shot twice in the head with a notice saying that he was killed for wearing jeans.

    – A lady was forced out of her car and stripped naked near the Nida’ mosque in Adhamiya.

    The Dominionists must be jealous.

  143. 143

    During Iran-contra, whenever I was so worried that I couldn’t sleep, about the state of our nation, where we were headed to, the hopelessness of it all, I’d listen to a lecture by Noam Chomsky and fall asleep.

    If there wasn’t a lecture on public radio, I could open a book. Always put me to sleep. Never habit-forming.

  144. 144
    ppGaz says:

    women are not allowed to drive

    AKA the Dream Highway ….

  145. 145
    John Redworth says:

    I like this new John Redworth character. A spoof of the moderate-center!

    Hardly a spoof but thanks for the thought… would it make me more credible in your eyes if I threw out a few typical phrases like kooks, wingnuts, moonbats or even my personal favorite… douchebags…

  146. 146
  147. 147
    DougJ says:

    Redworth, I defy you to find anyone who said something as stupidly obvious as this:

    I find it very hard to believe that you could locate any great number of Americans who support terrorism which is what this supposed war is against

    Doesn’t the New Republic have a comments section? How about Andrew Sullivan’s blog? I think you’d be happier over there. You can all pat each other on the back for how you see past the “extremism” on both sides of the debate.

  148. 148
    ppGaz says:

    would it make me more credible in your eyes if I threw out a few typical phrases like kooks, wingnuts, moonbats or even my personal favorite… douchebags…

    I’m using “assbite” lately, which replaces “bonesmoker,” a term which served well for several months.

    I like to rotate my insult words, that keeps me from getting into a rut.

  149. 149
    John Redworth says:

    Redworth, I defy you to find anyone who said something as stupidly obvious as this:

    I find it very hard to believe that you could locate any great number of Americans who support terrorism which is what this supposed war is against

    When questioning the motives or policies of the war in Iraq, the idea that any such person is unpatriotic, emboldens the terrorists and supports the terrorists… as far as a group that says such things without much thought would be the fun-filled wonderments over at LGF…

    Doesn’t the New Republic have a comments section? How about Andrew Sullivan’s blog? I think you’d be happier over there. You can all pat each other on the back for how you see past the “extremism” on both sides of the debate.

    Wow… you have nailed my position on every subject with my thoughts on this one? Give me a break…

    My thoughts on extremist thought when it comes to Iraq isn’t Andrew Sullivan-esque but reality based… you can not have a discussion on the war, the invasion or the occupation without one side telling me that Bush lied and this is a some massive neocon world conquering tour conspiracy or the other side questioning my patriotism because I refuse to ignore the Haditha, Abu Ghrab, Gitmo or even just asking if Rumsfeld/Bush/Cheney have any flipping clue on what they are doing… there has to be some middle common ground to work towards… there has to be some way to discuss it without the personal attacks on my character… it gets tiresome and since this has been going on for three flipping years it has become just a pain… if I want to hear how I am wrong from the likes of Malkin, Moore, Hannity, O’Reilly, Coulter, the wannabes thereof or any other person who sees things in absolutes, then there are plenty of other debates which take part of… or I could just ask my wife why she doesn’t want to do a three-way with the cute blonde from next door…

  150. 150
    John Redworth says:

    I’m using “assbite” lately, which replaces “bonesmoker,” a term which served well for several months.

    thanks for the advice… I will have to start compiling a list of insults to keep things fresh…

  151. 151
    DougJ says:

    Sorry, John, I don’t argue with people who make excessive use of ellipses…

  152. 152
    John Redworth says:

    Sorry, John, I don’t argue with people who make excessive use of ellipses…

    yeah, I am an extremist with ellipses…

  153. 153
    RonB says:

    AKA the Dream Highway ….

    Yeah, but the women drivers have been replaced by IEDs, so be careful what you wish for. I drove those fuckers a hundred times or so in Iraq and its pretty anarchic even sans women drivers. Road lines not painted in a dog’s age, people driving the wrong way on the highway, cloverleafs high as a skyscraper without guardrails…wild times.

  154. 154

    Semantic Tricks

    Iraq war supporters have been playing with words against opponents, Tim F. @ Balloon Juice writes….

  155. 155
    DougJ says:

    there has to be some middle common ground to work towards

    There’s not. Grow up and start rejecting the Broder hypothesis — that all wisdom is be found in the middle. Our country is run by incompetent, crooked, ideologs, most of whom belong in jail and may still end up there some day.

    That’s the truth and if you’re not willing to see it, then roll up an issue of the New Republic and shove it up your ass.

  156. 156
    DougJ says:

    I hate to be such a prick, John, but I hate it when people profess to be left of center, then mock the “blame Bush” crowd. He’s the fucking president, and an imperial president at that, and you’re damned right I blame him for Iraq, for the budget deficit, for the response to Katrina, for the various forms of constitution desecration going on, for trying to discredit science, for paying journalists here (and abroad) to prodcue pro-White House propaganda, for outting a secret agent for political retribution, for gutting the CIA by appointing a hack like Hooker Goss to head it up, for calling his political opponents traitors, for shamelessly pandering to religious extremists at every turn, and to summarize, I blame him for what’s happened to the country over the past 5 years, that we’ve gone from united, propserous, and respected to divided, debt-ridden, and despised.

    I call that accountability. I don’t know what you, Peter Beinart, and Joe Lieberman call it. And, frankly, I don’t care.

  157. 157
    Andrew says:

    Come on Doug, I think there is a lot promise in the moderate position: we could invade only half of Iran, seal off about half of the border, deport half of the Mexicans, and let black and Asian gays get married, but not white ones.

  158. 158
    Andrew says:

    And I’d be happy with only $45,000 in my freezer.

  159. 159
    Pb says:

    Andrew,

    Yeah, the *real* neo-cons know that we’re up to WWIV or WWV or something by now. WWVI in 2008!

  160. 160
    ppGaz says:

    Yeah, but the women drivers have been replaced by IEDs

    Point well taken. My smart-ass joke was ill considered.

  161. 161
    Tim F. says:

    People, you know that I won’t censor anybody but this spoof business is exactly what I’m talking about in my post. If it pisses you off to have your own credibility challenged then don’t declare that everybody who you don’t like/disagree with is a spoof. In my opinion it is exactly the same thing.

  162. 162
    Cyrus says:

    Come on Doug, I think there is a lot promise in the moderate position: we could invade only half of Iran, seal off about half of the border, deport half of the Mexicans, and let black and Asian gays get married, but not white ones.

    Heh. Well put. We shouldn’t assume that John Redworth here thinks like this — I think we don’t know enough about him yet to jump down his throat like you did, he seems to be talking about civility more than positions — but there are some people who choose centrism for its own sake, and they’re a big part of the problem. In terms of political results there is often (less often these days, it seems, but anyways) a place for compromise and splitting the difference, but in terms of principles and positions and rhetoric, it’s utterly ridiculous.

    If Dobson and Co. ever decide that pi is equal to three, Amy Sullivan and Hillary Clinton and a bunch of other moderates would seriously push for legislating the standard of pi=3.07.

    Cue Brian complaining about me calling Hillary Clinton a moderate in 3… 2… 1…

    Speaking of whom, if Brian wrote this:

    … you (Tim) might at least consider how what people like me see as concrete evidence of anti-Americanism in your rhetoric is counter-productive to that understanding coming to pass.

    Then either the multiple references to the hasty generalization fallacy in the original post went right over his head, or he chose not to provide examples of what he’s talking about, or else this “concrete evidence of anti-Americanism” in Tim’s rhetoric is just another figment of his imagination.

  163. 163
    ppGaz says:

    If it pisses you off to have your own credibility challenged then don’t declare that everybody who you don’t like/disagree with is a spoof. In my opinion it is exactly the same thing.

    Must disagree, with all due respect. It is not the same thing. With spoofing, one can never be sure what one is responding to. Good spoofing, I mean, and we have world class spoofing here, gotta give ’em their props. But spoofing it is. Over the last year, I’d reckon we’ve seen a hundred or more handles that are spoof …. maybe more. Some regular names here now (currently, within the last 45 days) are spoof.

    Since I am one of those who often gets the “everybody you disagree with is called a spoof” targets, let me present this simple and irrefutable defense: Not true. The handles I call spoof are mostly spoof, and certainly not “everybody I disagree with.” That’s an absurd claim on its face. The list includes everyone who has ever posted here. I will argue with anybody, any time, as you all know. Whereas my spoof list is quite short. And mostly, correct.

    LBNL, if a poster’s material looks like spoof, and gets called spoof, in a place where spoof is 20-40% of the traffic on any given day, that’s his problem, not mine.

    I put that in bold, you know, for effect. Your posts walk like ducks, quack like ducks, paddle around in the water like ducks, look like ducks? Then I shall call them ducks. Don’t like it? Tough.

  164. 164
    canuckistani says:

    but there are some people who choose centrism for its own sake, and they’re a big part of the problem

    You can put me down as one of those wicked “centrists” who are part of the problem. I think when the right wing is in control, I need to push things back to the left. When the pendulum swings too far to the left, I push it back to the right, all the while trying to balance individual and collective rights. Being a centrist does not mean stupid compromises. It’s a pragmatic solution to an otherwise intractable problem.
    Of course, being a Canadian centrist is probably like being an American Maoist.

    And speaking of Canada, did y’all see how we can catch terrorists without breaking the law?

  165. 165
    ppGaz says:

    When the pendulum swings too far to the left, I push it back to the right, all the while trying to balance individual and collective rights. Being a centrist does not mean stupid compromises

    I think that’s exactly what it means. Do you think that the destruction of liberties is something that should be negotiated, or moderated? That makes you a Whig, and my enemy.

    In the battle for liberty, compromises are for those who are willing to trade away MY liberty for THEIR reasons. In short, fuck you, sir.

  166. 166
    Andrew says:

    ppGaz, calm down. You should really take the moderate-center position with canuckistani, between embracing him and wanting to kill him, and that is a solid punch in the nuts.

  167. 167

    And speaking of Canada, did y’all see how we can catch terrorists without breaking the law?

    Like that’s something to be proud of. If you moose-worshippers had taken a hard line against terrorism to begin with, Santa would still be alive today.

    Ah, why am I even responding to you? You’re obviously a spoof. A real Canuckistani wouldn’t post here – they’re too busy plotting new ways to destroy holiday icons and Christianity so that they can impose mandatory gay marriage.

  168. 168

    Mike’s Blog Round Up

  169. 169
    ppGaz says:

    ppGaz, calm down. You should really take the moderate-center position with canuckistani, between embracing him and wanting to kill him, and that is a solid punch in the nuts.

    That might be the best line in the thread!

    But anyway, I declare him to be a Liebermantarian.

    The dregs of today’s political lanscape.

  170. 170
    canuckistani says:

    A real Canuckistani wouldn’t post here – they’re too busy plotting new ways to destroy holiday icons and Christianity so that they can impose mandatory gay marriage.

    Well, duh. It’s called multitasking.

  171. 171
    Krista says:

    Of course, being a Canadian centrist is probably like being an American Maoist.

    I think you’re correct on that one. Even the farthest-right former member of the Reform Party would be considered centrist in the U.S.

    And speaking of Canada, did y’all see how we can catch terrorists without breaking the law?

    I thought that was a fine bit of work. CSIS, the RCMP, and local police all working together…it was a beautiful thing. But…what now? Our immigration laws are so lopsided. I lived in the same city as a Kosovo Serb who had a job lined up, and was a productive and law-abiding member of the community, and who had to claim sanctuary in a church basement for over 440 days in order to avoid deportation, because the government didn’t believe she’d be in any danger if she had to go back to Kosovo. And yet, there are people living in our country who have known ties to terrorism. How in the hell is it that they got in and are allowed to stay, when this woman was not?

  172. 172
    Don says:

    I’m waiting for a rightie response to my personal centrist problem with the war: I WANT MY MONEY BACK.

    Freedom for everyone is all well and good, but why should I be paying for it? Go ahead, stipulate the claims of all the pollyannas claiming that everything is going great in Iraq – I’ll go with that for the sake of argument. It’s still a damned expensive endeavor I’m never getting paid back for and it seems like I’m also paying in higher prices at the pump.

    Who’s next on the freedom charity train? What other commodities can we drive the price up on while emptying our own pockets?

  173. 173
    Larry says:

    The Country is in the middle only on the way to being dragged from one extreme to the other.

  174. 174
    canuckistani says:

    I think that’s exactly what it means. Do you think that the destruction of liberties is something that should be negotiated, or moderated? That makes you a Whig, and my enemy.

    Point missed. When George Bush infringes your rights from the right-hand end of the spectrum, you push back. Twenty years from now, when the left are in control and your rights are being violated, you push back the other way.
    If I may draw a simple example; when the demand for free speech includes the right to yell fire in a crowded theatre, one’s right to personal safety is infringed and you push back. If, twenty years later, that precedent leads to further infringement of free speech, then you push back the other way.
    And no, when politicians from the left embrace the abuses of the right, that is not what I mean by centrism.
    And if advocating compromise and tolerance gets me nothing but a “fuck you” and a kick in the nuts, well, good luck with that cultural divide. I can see you’re going to be just fine healing that up.

  175. 175
    ppGaz says:

    And if advocating compromise and tolerance gets me nothing but a “fuck you” and a kick in the nuts

    Spoken like a true Liebermantarian.

  176. 176
    Brian says:

    It sounds to me as if you want the right to question other people’s character but you take offense when somebody questions yours.

    Tim, if you want to get to an understanding, there has to be an acknowledgement of each side’s on-target and off-target points. Neither side is without its missteps that have resulted from ideology gone wild or from blind anger. If I am “dishonest”, I’m willing to listen as to why, but I have have been clear on this blog as to where and why I agree with the Left on the subject of Bush and this war. I strive for an honest balance.

    But I also call a spade a spade. Claiming that it’s malicious to call out liberals for being a) pacifist, b) America hating, or c) unwilling to fight, is to dismiss with a wave of your hand years of writings/speeches by a broad array of liberals, using words that cannot be defined other than as belonging to these three categories. It may be Cindy Sheehan, Noam Chomsky, Howard Dean, John Kerry, or Kos talking, but the message that comes out always has a resemblance to any or all of your categories. At least Peter Beinart gets credit from me for taking national security seriously, maybe more seriously than Bush does.

    I am loosely conservative, and would easily jump to a Democratic party that resembles that of FDR, Truman, or JFK. Since the Vietnam war, the radical Left has reduced that party to a group of ideologues that I want no association with. And until the party can open itself to people like me, there’s a good chance it’ll keep losing elections, because most voters also call a spade a spade, and will not trust the country to a gang of Kossacks.

  177. 177
    Brian says:

    Oh, and for those who wanted that Gore wuote regarding Global Warming, here it is:

    I believe it is appropriate to have an over-representation of factual presentations on how dangerous [global warming] is, as a predicate for opening up the audience to listen to what the solutions are, and how hopeful it is that we are going to solve this crisis.

    You have to first accept his premise that it is a crisis to accept his willingness to stretch the truth to make points for his cause against global warming. I don’t accept it as a crisis, nor do I accept his willingness to stretch the facts in order to get everyone to say “the sky is falling!!!”.

  178. 178
    dventimi says:

    I like what I think was the intent of the original post, which is to at least start a careful, critical, and hopefully rational analysis of some terms of political debate. However it was quickly undercut by the off-hand remark that Noam Chomsky (and a few others) hates America, which I think is a careless, uncritical, hopelessly irrational attack of the sort that routinely clouds political debate. Unless Chomsky has ever said or written, “I hate America” or something very much like it, it’s not possible for others to know his personal animus towards or affinity for America. One might claim this is a small point, but I argue it is the whole point, that in political science as in any science, to make any progress one must adhere scrupulously only to conclusions that flow ineluctably from the facts.

    Regards,
    Dave

  179. 179
    DougJ says:

    Brian, there’s hope for you yet. But you’ve got to lose these ideas about a powerful, radical left that exists only in the minds of Fox News watchers (and possibly New Republic readers).

    Something else, by the way apropos of Tim’s spoofing comments: try reading Brian’s or Mac’s comments and you’ll see that they’ve become better, more substantive, more original-sounding since the whole “you’re a spoof thing” began. Calling someone a spoof is a relatively inoffensive way of telling them to stop repeating bogus talking points.

  180. 180
    Brian says:

    DougJ, my posts, if they’re appearing any different at all, has absolutely nothing to do with being called a “spoof”, a term that’s definition I didn’t even understand until this weekend, even though it’s been used against me for weeks and weeks. It always appeared to me to be a lazy dismissal of my comments, and it turned out I was right.

    Also, since you’re paying close attention to comments, note too that ppGaz’s have become less laden with profanity since being called out on it by people like me.

  181. 181
    Darrell says:

    Iraq war supporters smeared skeptics as pacifists and as America-hating appeasers of terrorists who didn’t take the War on Terror seriously.

    There were huge protests in the streets with “Bush = Hitler” and “No blood for oil” signs in the runup to invading Iraq. Others on the left took it even further. The ever so patriotic left on multiple Indymedia sites followed Ted Rall’s lead and smeared Pat Tillman after he was killed

    It wasn’t only a ‘small number’ of leftists who jumped on the White Phosphorous non-story as an excuse to smear our troops, it was a large percentage of leftists who did that. Why? Because so many of them really are unpatriotic and hate Bush so much that they are willing to do anything to drag him down, no matter what the cost.

    Right after 9/11, Moveon.org, mouthpiece for the left, circulated a petition called for the US to ‘restrain’ our actions in retaliating against the attack. Michael Moore, hero to many on the left, refers to murderous Baathist and Al Queda terrorists as “minutemen” without a word of objection from his fans on the left.

    Some on the left have thoughtful honorable objections to the war. But many, many others do not. We see them routinely harass military recruiters on campus, or in other cases, more subtley block ROTC programs from campuses. All the while these aholes pat themselves on the back congratulating each other on their ‘noble’ dissent.

  182. 182
    demimondian says:

    Shorter Darrell:

    OK, so there never really was a Jackalope. See that made-up one over there?

  183. 183
    ppGaz says:

    accept his willingness to stretch the truth

    This is why we know you’re spoof. No intelligent person can get that out of what Gore said. He was talking about how to use the bandwidth in making a presentation, not about overstating the argument.

    If I’m teaching a class and I spend an hour on topic A and five minutes on topic B, it isn’t because I want to lie to you about the importance of A. It’s because I know that A takes longer to get and more explaining.

    Get outta here man, you are a caricature of yourself now.

  184. 184
    ppGaz says:

    And Doug? Stop arguing with yourself and demonstrating your skill at dancing around IP addresses.

  185. 185
    ppGaz says:

    Moveon.org, mouthpiece for the left

    You just can’t help yourself, can you, dumbfuck?

    You can use me as a typical lefty. I have never visited the moveon site. Never seen it.

  186. 186
    ppGaz says:

    Some on the left have thoughtful honorable objections to the war. But many, many others do not. We see them routinely harass military recruiters on campus, or in other cases, more subtley block ROTC programs from campuses

    Wow, you are really outdoing yourself today.

    You are confusing “objection” with “action.” The honorableness of my objection has nothing to do with the honorableness of the action I take. You know, for those of you who never finished eigth grade here.

    I oppose interfering with recruitment and ROTC functions, but that doesn’t make my objections more honorable. Or less. It just makes them more or less objectionable, or effective or ineffective.

    You blithering idiot. I oppose the war, but not the people who are sent there to fight it. I support them to the greatest possible extent. But like I said, that doesn’t make my opposition “better.”

  187. 187
    Darrell says:

    How many times do we have to say we are not against surveillance as long as it’s done lawfully before it sinks into a rightie brain? And are there numbers that go that high?

    I love how Tim is so enamored with the “relevance” of that post, completely oblivious to the fact that the very programs the left has been screaming are “illegal”, have not been determined to be illegal. There is a legitimate dispute over the legality of those programs which to this point has not been resolved (ie, not yet illegal)

    THAT is the point which hasn’t yet sunk into the walnut size brains of so many on the left.

  188. 188
    ppGaz says:

    THAT is the point which hasn’t yet

    Here’s a point that you’ll never get:

    Gross and general surveillance is not acceptable, whether the government can hire lawyers to argue that it’s legal or sorta legal or not.

    Finding loopholes and then screwing me over with them is not acceptable government. To you, it obviously is, because you’re a person who thinks that bigotry against gays is okay if a lot of people think it’s okay. So we have to apply the Darrell Principle here.

  189. 189
    numbskull says:

    Brian,

    You apparently agree with the Fox News interpretation of Gore’s statement. An alternative, and IMO more accurate interpretation was presented at Media Matters:

    “In fact, Gore simply said that in order to get people to engage in a discussion of the possible methods of countering global warming, it is appropriate to initially devote more time to outlining the dangers posed by global warming than to discussing possible solutions.”

  190. 190
    Tudor-Hart says:

    GOP4Me tried to say :

    You liberals don’t want to take notice of all the progress that’s going on in Iraq. That’s why you choose to speak as if though Operation Iraqi Freedom were some sort of failure. Well, saying it doesn’t make it so. This war has been a resounding success on every level.

    Every levels? Please name those levels.

    Since many rightwingers see every Iraqis as criminal insurgents, I guess Haditha was a success? Funny how you insisted on “liberating” a population that you neocons so quickly associate to terrorists without any exception, including children. (http://michellemalkin.com/archives/2006_05.htm)

    A success on every level? Geez, you must be a joke. I guess you are part of this small fraction of brainwashed idiots who still believe there was any connection between Saddam and Bin Laden, between Iraq and 9/11. You must be watching Fox News.

    Okay, the government needs some work. I’ll concede that, freedom is not always a precise science.

    Still, with such a low level of certainty, there was no reasonnable exit plan and nothing planned for the months following a military victory. In doubt, intelligent people try to gather more information. They don’t say “Ah, whatever…We’ll do it and see what happens”. Especially when you are putting so many young people in harm’s way.

    And what about the rest of it? Consider the Iraqi school system. We build schools in that country every day, but do you hear a word about them? Nope.

    Oh but then you did hear about them! How come? You’ve got contacts in Iraq? How many schools so far? And how many were actually destroyed when US troops decided to protect the Ministry of Oil first? (http://www.smh.com.au/articles.....43895.html)

    Nor do you hear about the hospitals, police stations, or the well-trained, well-armed Iraqi Army we’re assembling.

    See previous comment about hospitals.

    As for the Iraqi Army, we DO hear about them. Maybe you are just not listening. And we hear that they are “willing” but poorly trained, and will need 5 more years before it can wage war without U.S. military help. And that it lacks basic equipment.(http://www.washtimes.com/natio.....-2311r.htm)

    Tipsters are abounding, US losses are down, and Islamists are dying in record numbers.

    US losses are down? Maybe on a monthly basis, considering June when we are only 5 days into the month…Actually, there’s been more deaths in April and May than in the 3 previous months. (http://icasualties.org/oif/USChart.aspx)

    Who the hell is feeding you bad intel? Italy?

    By any objective reading of the history of this conflict, you were, and are, pro-Saddam.

    Please don’t use words you know nothing about. Like “objectivity”.

    What about the Iraqi stock exchange? Under Saddam, capitalism was severely curtailed, and freedom was ground under an iron boot. Now, the Iraqis are free to invest in a wide range of companies, and the cornerstone of every successful democracy has been laid.

    Invest what money, if you don’t mind me asking?

    The American people know that there’s no issue more important than freedom, and that fighting for freedom is the only way to keep it.

    Please explain how Iraq was a threat to your freedom? And please, try using facts for a change.

    The American people punished them accordingly in 2002 and 2004, and will probably punish them again in 2006, 2008, 2010, 2012, and 2016, by which point the Democratic Party will probably have split into moderates who’ve sensibly joined the GOP, and Naderites who’ve either sought their fortunes in Canada and Cuba, or actively betrayed America and been sent to Guantanamo.

    Oh! So you are in favor of a Police State, “Heil Bush” and that kindda stuff?

    BTW, I’m from Canada. Doesn’t look like Cuba too me (and I’ve been to Cuba recently).

    If America had an opposition party that talked sense on any issue, I might even be willing to vote for it occasionally.

    You missed the keyword : opposition.

    Looks like you are in favor of single-party ruling. Just like fascists and bolcheviks.

    I understand your anger, but I don’t care. Think of how angry the Iraqis would feel, if Saddam were still in power and lining his palaces with hidden nuclear weapons right now (as he probably would have been if we hadn’t permanently halted his WMD research).

    So that’s what you base your opinions on? Wild guess and hypothesis?

    Ok, let me play too. Imagine how Americans would feel if DUI and drug abuse were considered worst than lying about a blowjob?

    (That last paragraph was irony. Had to mention it, since you proved on this very thread that you are not familiar with the concept.)

    As for what Americans think, you should look here, here, here and especially here.

  191. 191
    DougJ says:

    Also, since you’re paying close attention to comments, note too that ppGaz’s have become less laden with profanity since being called out on it by people like me.

    Brian, your posts have gotten better and I think it’s partly because when you used to recite talking points, we mocked you for it. Perhaps you didn’t know what it meant to be called a spoof, but one way or another you knew when you were being called out for using Bush cliches. To your credit, you stopped.

    As for ppgaz, his comments always have and always will be laced with profanity. It’s his fucking trademark.

  192. 192
    ppGaz says:

    As for ppgaz, his comments always have and always will be

    Fuck you.

  193. 193
    Tudor-Hart says:

    Darrel,

    There is a legitimate dispute over the legality of those programs which to this point has not been resolved (ie, not yet illegal)

    And why is that? Isn’t it because the Administration is doing everything possible in order to block the investigation?

    How dishonest is it to block an investigation, but then to gloat about how there is still a dispute.

    In fact, it’s just like blocking scientists from sharing their research on global warming and censuring them, but then pretend that the scientific community is not unanimous on this question…

    So I guess Bush can do whatever he wants, as long as he blocks any investigation. Frightening.

  194. 194
    Tim F. says:

    Claiming that it’s malicious to call out liberals for being a) pacifist, b) America hating, or c) unwilling to fight, is to dismiss with a wave of your hand years of writings/speeches by a broad array of liberals, using words that cannot be defined other than as belonging to these three categories. It may be Cindy Sheehan, Noam Chomsky, Howard Dean, John Kerry, or Kos talking, but the message that comes out always has a resemblance to any or all of your categories.

    Here we have a nice, compact grab bag of the most common logical fallacies that righties use to smear the left. By far the most common is picking somebody at some hilarious extreme – say, Ward Churchill – and then using the accident fallacy to attach him or her to an abstract notion of “the left.” That is a pretty common mistake on your part. Some folks, Darrell for example, take that a step further and rely on the accidentdivision daily double for extra bogusness: lefties supported communism, therefore leftism supports communism. You are a leftie, therefore you support communism.

    Another point really makes me wonder if you actually read anything that I write. When I pointed out that people who oppose Iraq don’t necessarily oppose either war per se or attacking terrorists vigorously, did that not sink in or did you choose to ignore it? Given the hysterical rightwing rhetoric concerning Kosovo this ought to be an easy point to grok. It is also an amazingly convenient point for righties like yourself not to grok but who knows, you could prove me wrong. Maybe sixteen times is the charm.

    Those are points that concern rightie rhetoric in general, but everybody has his or her signature rhetorical gimmick. I will illustrate yours from the perspective of washing hair. For the next paragraph I’m you.

    [Brian] Look, I understand that a reasonable case can be made for washing your hair and a reasonable person might convince me that it’s a good idea, but look at the people who wash their hair. Hitler washed his hair. Carrot Top washes his hair three or four times a day. A year ago on CNN I saw some hair activists waving signs saying ‘dirty f*cking hippies should die.’ The guy who sold me a shitty life insurance policy had immaculate hair. Given all that it is just very hard for me to take washing your hair very seriously. [/Brian]

    I could play the same game with rightwingerism: a surprising number of righties declared that we should nuke Fallujah. Does that make rightwingers emotional children who wouldn’t know the real world if it bit them in the ass? No, it doesn’t. It means that in every large group you will find nutty people who say stupid things and wave extremist signs. If you already don’t want to belong to that group then those people will stand out like black on white. If you want to belong then they’re practically invisible. Basic psychology, illustrated by you.

    Finally, you lump Kos, Cindy Sheehan, John Kerry, Noam Chomsky and Howard Dean together as if they make some sort of logical set. Obviously you mean to tar important and unremarkable people by association with the unimportant and bizarre. Let’s say I threw together a list that included the president, Stormfront, Mike Huckabee, Dennis Hastert and Timothy McVeigh. You would probably cry foul and you would be right to do so. In fact, amazingly enough, each member of that list is a different person who has different basic perspectives on the world. Some are reasonable, some are batshit crazy.

    Thus endeth the diatribe.

  195. 195
    Darrell says:

    And why is that?

    Because Bush has a strong legal justification for the ‘illegal’ NSA program

  196. 196
    Darrell says:

    Some folks, Darrell for example, take that a step further and rely on the accident-division daily double for extra bogusness: lefties supported communism, therefore leftism supports communism. You are a leftie, therefore you support communism.

    I NEVER said or implied that last sentence attributed to me. The left, by and large, did excuse and minimize communist atrocities.. but I never took it the step further and suggested all lefties support communism.

    If you have a quote of mine saying otherwise, produce it. Otherwise, show some honor and apologize making that shit up.

  197. 197
    John Redworth says:

    I hate to be such a prick, John, but I hate it when people profess to be left of center, then mock the “blame Bush” crowd. He’s the fucking president, and an imperial president at that, and you’re damned right I blame him for Iraq, for the budget deficit, for the response to Katrina, for the various forms of constitution desecration going on, for trying to discredit science, for paying journalists here (and abroad) to prodcue pro-White House propaganda, for outting a secret agent for political retribution, for gutting the CIA by appointing a hack like Hooker Goss to head it up, for calling his political opponents traitors, for shamelessly pandering to religious extremists at every turn, and to summarize, I blame him for what’s happened to the country over the past 5 years, that we’ve gone from united, propserous, and respected to divided, debt-ridden, and despised.

    Once again… I am only discussing the war and not these other issues… you have no flipping clue on how I feel about these other issues… my feelings towards the President is not of the highest regards and it never has been… believe it or not, I have spent a fair share of my time blaming Bush… but don’t let that get in the way of your rant…

    I am discussing the war here and how I feel that the extremes from the left and right make actual discussion on what to do impossible… from being called unAmerican to the aforementioned “Bush=Hitler” folks… I want some sort of resolution as far as Iraq goes… I want Rumsfeld to hump his pasty white ass to the unemployment line… I want answers on why our intelligence was such an incredible failing or if it was fixed to make war the only option… I would love to finally hear how the hell Iraq even counts as part of this global conflict on terror or whateverthehell the new marketing term for it is… how is it at all New Republic of me to want to ignore the fuck stains (how is that ppGaz?) who continue to cry the absolutism of “with us or against us” shit or those that simply place a Nazi armband on a picture of Bush and call him the next Hitler?

    BJ is interesting in the fact that they have a range of different opinions instead of the typical our way only shit in which anyone who disagrees must be a troll… according to the LGF fucks, I am a traitor and terrorist lover… to some of the folks at Huff, I am neocon wannabe and a Bush enabler… these characterizations of me is insane…

    Scary as it seems, but I do agree with a number of the issues you mentioned and probably even more, but instead of giving me a chance you have gang-raped me as if my opinion means nothing while your opinion is key… fuck that and it shows the fucked way people react… you say there is no common ground on Iraq then fine… you must want to “cut and run” if not then you want to stick it out until the “job is done…” or maybe follow the Ted Nugent plan and just Nagasaki them… which one do you choose? Those are the options placed on the table without middle ground…

  198. 198
    ppGaz says:

    I NEVER said or implied that last sentence attributed to me.

    Thus ended Darrell’s last tendril of respectability here.

    Darrell the Homophobe / Darrell the Slanderer maintained his innocence right up until they put the hood over his head.

    Even then, from under the cloth, came the muffled cry, “I never said that!”

    A memorial service for Darrell’s gonads will be held this Saturday at the Grapevine Lake, Texas Wal Mart Food Court.

  199. 199
    Darrell says:

    Either we invaded Iraq because of its connections to terror (that would be Zarqawi, who was holed up in independent Kurdistan and easily bombable, and monetary payments to bombers who threatened Israel and not us) or else it has only an indirect connection at best with the War on Terror

    Or for a whole host of other reasons? I mean, after Saddam had a 12 year run of repeatedly violating his 1991 terms of surrender, can you believe Bush actually did something about it? And with overwhelming bi-partisan Congressional support.

  200. 200
    rs says:

    Noam Chomsky is anti-Semitic? Thanks for your contribution toward making any future use of the label meaningless,Par R.

  201. 201
    Nash says:

    On spoofs

    I think it is safest to proceed publicly as if a comment is not a spoof for the following reasons:

    Historically, the motivations behind posting spoof comments seem to have been either to entertain, to educate, or (in a variation of attention-seeking behavior) to antagonize. The spoof as entertainment thing has been done (to death). Rarely is it done with aplomb and the requisite level of ability to make it worth the reading. Hell, most blog topposts are not done well enough to make them worth the reading, but that’s an addiction I’m unwilling to address here.

    The spoof as education thing (which in the hands of the truly gifted is also carried off in an entertaining fashion, see Cordrey, Colbert, etc.) has also been overdone. Spoof as education is a form of sarcasm–and sarcasm is an acre of humor which gets mossy quickly. Frankly, Colbert isn’t a funny to me as he used to be…I grow tired of the schtick, even though I know there is meaning behind the madness. Something that gets old in the telling ends up not getting told–meaning, it no longers works as education. So, it’s a waste and I sweep it, whether fairly or not, into the final category:

    The spoof as antagonism/attention seeking. I’d suggest this is far and away the predominant form of spoof commenting here and at most other political blogs. This form of spoof is purely destructive to a thread. Whether it is desirable or not, so many of these discussions become zero-sum discussions and in such an black/white world, spoofs no longer have the capacity to entertain or educate, but rather, they simply annoy and derail.

    I have been thinking about this for a long time and still feel that the best response to apparent spoofery is no response that takes a form of voicing your suspicions. If you can exercise your restraint, but a colleague cannot, the next best response is to avoid joining in on the speculations. In fact, if an apparent spoof sends a fellow commentor over the edge, I’d suggest you quietly cluck cluck to yourself and let it pass. That will be one fewer comment wedged in between comments that might actually be of interest.

    I don’t really care whether a post by a “Brian” or a “GOP4ME” or an incarnation of “DougJ” (in an earlier life, right, Doug?) is a spoof. All the motivations for spoofing are lost on me anymore, and I hope, someday for you as well. In their place, we are left with comments that we can take at face value and choose whether to respond or simply ignore. I’ve found that by taking this attitude into my comment reading, I’ve been able to skim, read through, skip over and ignore much that used to be able to get a rise out of me. Much of what has been said in this very thread that could be thought of as spoofery has not be worthy of any response…but that’s just me talking and using too many ellipses.

  202. 202
    Tudor-Hart says:

    Because Bush has a strong legal justification for the ‘illegal’ NSA program

    Since the justification is so “strong”, why not submit the question to a full inquiry? Then he’d be able to use the favorable conclusions to put this matter to rest during this most important election year…

    With such a “strong” legal justification, Bush could only gain from a full inquiry. And yet…

  203. 203
    Nash says:

    So.

    I backed/demanded our invasion of Afghanistan and feel we have an unfinished job there yet. I didn’t have the resources of the CIA, nor those of the intelligence agencies of all of the other nations said to agree that Iraq had WMD, and yet I didn’t support the invasion of Iraq, because I had read enough press accounts in such services as Knight-Ridder and in such outlets as Christian Science Monitor and even, egads, the NYT and WaPo that I was aware that there were serious doubts that Hussein retained WMD capabilities. I felt the prudent thing to do was what we were doing in Jan 2003–riddle the country with inspectors looking for bad stuff until we knew whether the doubts were correct or not. I felt strongly then (and not one pro-Iraq war person has ever explained away this mystery to my satisfaction) that if we needed to invade Iraq, it would be because we knew they had WMD, not because we weren’t sure if they had WMD and it would be AFTER the inspectors had completed their work. Of course, this presupposes that I also felt that even if Hussein had WMD, he had no way to harm us with them directly (how very provincial of me) and that a mid-March 2003 invasion was on its face proof that our invasion was arbitrary and desired by our political leadership. It was, in the vernacular, a war of choice, and my choice was not to agree with it.

    So.

    In the past, I have been known to vote for candidates from the Democratic Party, the Republican Party, and an assortment of unaffiliated candidates. I’ve voted for more Democrats than Republicans, but I am not even close to a one-party voter.

    Having been called a “traitor” and a “pacifist” here and elsewhere by self-professed conservative Republicans has drastically changed my voting behavior. Since the first time that happened, I have not voted for anyone from the Republican Party–something I did with no little frequency before I was called a “traitor” here.

    My own representative to the US House of Representatives is a personal friend. I’ve known her for almost 12 years and she is a good person and means well. But because people belonging to her party called me a “traitor” because I chose to question my country’s choices, I voted against her in the last general election and I will again this fall when she runs again. She knows this and tells me that she understands my position.

    I think words should have consequences. They do with me.

  204. 204
    Brian says:

    Finally, you lump Kos, Cindy Sheehan, John Kerry, Noam Chomsky and Howard Dean together as if they make some sort of logical set.

    Actualy, this is a fair respresentation of the Left’s rhetorical bombast against Bush and the War. It covers the political, the academic, the elite, and the citizen. Maybe this can and will change, but I have no Tim McVeigh or Unabomber on the liberal set, so I think mine is a more reasonable set, or representation, than your “righty” list.

    As for your faux Brian-logic on hair washing and fascists or criminals, I think that they are mutually exclusive. I won’t be caught confusing hair washing with the extermination of Jews. However, liberals cannot be separated so easily from the rhetorical bombast they’ve been willingly associated with since 2000 (some would argue since Vietnam ended).

    Am I missing something?

  205. 205
    Darrell says:

    My own representative to the US House of Representatives is a personal friend. I’ve known her for almost 12 years and she is a good person and means well. But because people belonging to her party called me a “traitor” because I chose to question my country’s choices

    I think it’s fair to say that those on the left who have equated Bush with Hitler and his supporters with being fascists, in general, far outnumber those on the right who accuse lefties of being traitors.

    “Clap harder, clap louder for our Dear Leader!” [/leftist whackjob]

  206. 206
    ppGaz says:

    I won’t be caught confusing hair washing with the extermination of Jews.

    We’ll look forward to your White Paper on this.

  207. 207
    GOP4Me says:

    I don’t really care whether a post by a “Brian” or a “GOP4ME” or an incarnation of “DougJ” (in an earlier life, right, Doug?) is a spoof. All the motivations for spoofing are lost on me anymore, and I hope, someday for you as well. In their place, we are left with comments that we can take at face value and choose whether to respond or simply ignore. I’ve found that by taking this attitude into my comment reading, I’ve been able to skim, read through, skip over and ignore much that used to be able to get a rise out of me. Much of what has been said in this very thread that could be thought of as spoofery has not be worthy of any response…but that’s just me talking and using too many ellipses.

    I agree with you on spoofing, but because you choose to equate me with this phenomenon and ignore my posts accordingly, I’ll extend you the same favor in the future.

    You write too much anyway, and you sound like a Saddamite. The Democratic Party is riddled with Saddamites and sodomites, and most of the sensible moderates have already left it for good.

  208. 208
    Christopher says:

    Wonderful. So now you’ve realized that people on the Left -AND- on the Right are human. It’s unfortunate that so many on both such sides fail to realize this as well.

    My only advice is this: do no treat “semantics” as the only argument for one side or the other. Just because so many arguments between human beings boils down into semantics doesn’t mean that there aren’t facts (or a lack of facts) to be argued. There’s a huge well of information being opened up on the WMD Files site… more and more information is coming into the open about WMDs that may indeed have existed, and al Qaeda connections may have in fact existed…

    I say “may” for both of those last two points because I’m not here to argue them, but point out the fact that despite all of this semantics-mongering that anyone does in any lengthy heated debate, there -are- valid, credible points on both sides of the debate, and when we’re sitting over here in North America watching these things happen, it’s impossible to know everything, and know what’s what.

    peace

  209. 209
    ppGaz says:

    I agree with you on spoofing

    Excuse me, my dentures seem to have shot across the room.

  210. 210
    GOP4Me says:

    Excuse me, my dentures seem to have shot across the room.

    What does this mean, Gandalf?

  211. 211
    ppGaz says:

    What does this mean, Gandalf?

    Mummah gummah lummah humma summa wumma. Gummadammuh!

  212. 212
    Tim F. says:

    Actualy, this is a fair respresentation of the Left’s rhetorical bombast against Bush and the War. It covers the political, the academic, the elite, and the citizen. Maybe this can and will change, but I have no Tim McVeigh or Unabomber on the liberal set, so I think mine is a more reasonable set, or representation, than your “righty” list.

    As for your faux Brian-logic on hair washing and fascists or criminals, I think that they are mutually exclusive. I won’t be caught confusing hair washing with the extermination of Jews. However, liberals cannot be separated so easily from the rhetorical bombast they’ve been willingly associated with since 2000 (some would argue since Vietnam ended).

    Brian, with a less perceptive commentator I might consider that a response. You’re smarter than that.

    I NEVER said or implied that last sentence attributed to me. The left, by and large, did excuse and minimize communist atrocities.. but I never took it the step further and suggested all lefties support communism.

    Darrell, 5/16/2006:

    You lefties defended and excused communism, the most murderous ideology in modern history.

    By putting it in the second person you have expanded the set of people who defended communism to include the person to whom you are talking. If that is not what you meant, and you use this rhetorical construct frequently, then it seems like a very convenient mistake. “Leftie” or not I have no more obligation to apologize for communist lefties like David Horowitz than you do to apologize for Stormfront and Tim McVeigh.

    I think it’s fair to say that those on the left who have equated Bush with Hitler and his supporters with being fascists, in general, far outnumber those on the right who accuse lefties of being traitors.

    Why? That doesn’t sound fair at all.

  213. 213
    GOP4Me says:

    Mummah gummah lummah humma summa wumma. Gummadammuh!

    Thanks, I guess.

    Sorry, I didn’t realize you wore dentures on your fingers…

  214. 214
    Darrell says:

    “Leftie” or not I have no more obligation to apologize for communist lefties like David Horowitz than you do to apologize for Stormfront and Tim McVeigh.

    If you agree that’s the case, then explain how in the world my use of term “left” or “lefties'” sympathies (by and large at the time) toward communism in any way justifies this leap on your part:

    Some folks, Darrell for example, take that a step further and rely on the accident-division daily double for extra bogusness: lefties supported communism, therefore leftism supports communism. You are a leftie, therefore you support communism.

    So Tim, by this logic, anytime you refer to attitudes and opinions attributed to ‘war defenders’ or ‘conservatives’, you must therefore be refering to every single person who defended the war or who identifies as a conservative without exception. Because that is precisely the standard you dishonestly applied to me.

    My quote you highlight was in response to gratefulcub, who often tries to argue that the left’s historical positions were morally superior to that of conservatives. In that context, it was entirely reasonable to point out how horribly wrong the left had been (generally speaking) historically in minimizing and excusing the atrocities of communism. Examples of such excuse making were given, and many more available.

    Doesn’t mean that ALL leftists to a man excused or minimized the suffering and murder under communism, especially the ones too young to remember before the fall of the Berlin Wall.

  215. 215
    ppGaz says:

    You are a leftie, therefore you support communism.

    If ever a shoe fit, Darrell, this is it.

    You been pwned, Barney.

    Doesn’t mean that ALL leftists to a man

    Darrell needs more power! Pat! Pat! Pat! Will YOU help Darrell rocket out of this jam?

    Pat! Pat! Pat! Pat! Pat! Pat!

  216. 216
    Darrell says:

    Why? That doesn’t sound fair at all.

    No? There were 10’s of thousands of protesters here in the US holding ‘Bush = Hitler’ or ‘No war for oil’ signs during protest marches. That’s not counting all the many, many liberals referring to Iraq war defenders as ‘fascists’ and ‘little Eichmans’. You’d be hard-pressed to come up with much more than a dozen or two examples of those on the right throwing out ‘traitor’ against the left, except in cases where the the leftists really deserved the ‘traitor’ label.

  217. 217
    ppGaz says:

    There were 10’s of thousands of protesters here in the US holding ‘Bush = Hitler’ or ‘No war for oil’ signs during protest marches

    So why don’t you go and pester them, asshole? What the FUCK are you doing here bothering us? Do you see any of those signs around here?

    Fucking jerk.

  218. 218
    Mark says:

    Brian thinks it bad that a person would choose to criticize his/her own country before criticizing another. But elementary ethics tells me that, if a person wants his words to have consequence, he would opt to critique his own country, rather than another, because a) he is complicit in his country’s actions and b) as a citizen, his words have leverage. Viewed in this light, it would be morally derelict not to criticize one’s own country, before critiquing another. Of course, one can think of exceptions, but, in general, ethics seems to require that we expend the bulk of critical efforts on our own country, rather than on another.

    What say you, Brian?

  219. 219
    ppGaz says:

    Brian thinks it bad that a person would choose to criticize his/her own country before criticizing another

    I don’t criticize this country. I criticize the government. The government is not the country.

    The country was founded on the idea that the government should be criticized, early and often. These motherfuckers are not taking that away.

  220. 220
    John Redworth says:

    I think it’s fair to say that those on the left who have equated Bush with Hitler and his supporters with being fascists, in general, far outnumber those on the right who accuse lefties of being traitors.

    I wouldn’t say that this is a fair thought since I have heard probably equal to if not more than my share of “traitors” as compared to the “Bush is Hitler” crap… but that is probably due to the company/media I keep… however, even if the headcount was what you said, the amount of “serious” conservatives/republicans or those with some pull/power that have questioned the patriotism of those on the left is much greater than the opposite…

  221. 221
    Darrell says:

    the amount of “serious” conservatives/republicans or those with some pull/power that have questioned the patriotism of those on the left is much greater than the opposite…

    First, you underestimate the pull/power of the left.

    Second, with all their “pull”, tell us how many citizens were rounded up on traitor charges by Republicans? And do you recognize that those thousands who held signs (as well as their non-protester sympathizers) equating our actions in Iraq with Nazism and/or fascism, deserve to have their patriotism questioned? Or do you believe their behavior was honorable dissent?

  222. 222
    Mark says:

    In one (very important) sense, ppGaz, you’re correct. To give an example, the Bush administration’s decision to invade Iraq was exactly that–the decision of the Bush administration. In no sense could it be said that the American people (“the country”) elected to go to war. Indeed, it can’t even be said that the country willingly elected to continue the war, since neither candidate in ’04 made it his promised policy to do otherwise. The country voted to continue the war, because the country had no choice.

    But this objection overlooks the fact that the country enabled the administration then, just as it enables it now. The war is “our” responsibility, making it fair to say that Iraq is “our country’s” war.

    What this points to, though, is the very vulnerability of the mystical notion of “country.”

  223. 223
    Darrell says:

    To give an example, the Bush administration’s decision to invade Iraq was exactly that—the decision of the Bush administration.

    The decision of an elected President, backed by an overwhelming majority of a democratically elected Congress who authorized the Iraq invasion.

  224. 224
    Darrell says:

    In no sense could it be said that the American people (“the country”) elected to go to war

    In addition to electing the officials who decided to go to war, according to this CNN poll, 73% of all Americans supported the Iraq war in April, 2003. I hope this new information is useful

  225. 225
    Mark says:

    Darrell doesn’t know what “elect” means.

    Inadvertantly, though, he is providing evidence for my second point, that the “we” enabled the administration to go to war.

  226. 226
    ppGaz says:

    backed by an overwhelming majority

    Backed by a deceived, manipulated majority.

    That was then, this is now.

    68% believe the United States is worse off today than it was before Bush became president.

    Recent mainstream poll story.

    Nice try, Darrell. The lying piece of shit manipulates people into going along with a bad idea, and then you come along 4 years later to claim that …. what? …. we should excuse him because so many people agreed with him?

    We should excuse you for being a bigot because “most people” think like you do?

    WTF? Do you actually have an idea of your own?

    If not, why are you posting here? Why do they let you post here?

  227. 227
    RonB says:

    Backed by a deceived, manipulated majority.

    And partially craven, to be fair…

  228. 228
    SimonR says:

    GOP4me. It is with some interest I look at the rosy picture that is painted by yourself. Of course not backed up with fact. Things are not improving. May: deadliest month for Iraqi secuity forces and civilian death’s:1128. It is increasing each month. 2nd deadlist month for US forces this year: 79 dead. Number of readied iraqi police and troops who can operate without assistance = zero.
    Basra the supposedly good story of a town under control: now chaos: 9 British troops killed in May. Previous month: 1. Still averaging 45 US troops wounded and not returned to battle within 72 hours – per week. Reconstruction has ground to halt, money has been siphoned off to corrupt US companies, and iraq politicians, and none is left.

    Keep your head in the sand if you will…

  229. 229
    John Redworth says:

    First, you underestimate the pull/power of the left.

    I stand by what I said since it is easy to point to people like Hannity, Coulter, O’Reilly, Malkin, Savage, Limbaugh, Rove, Laura Ingram etc have made comments that those who oppose the war are basically traitors… these a bit higher profile and have a bit more pull than some kid holding up a sign in Seattle…

    Second, with all their “pull”, tell us how many citizens were rounded up on traitor charges by Republicans?

    I don’t see the connection… you are trying to stretch the thought in to something irrational (arresting citizens) as compared to making public statements to the effect that people who disagree with the war are unpatriotic, un-American and traitors…

    And do you recognize that those thousands who held signs (as well as their non-protester sympathizers) equating our actions in Iraq with Nazism and/or fascism, deserve to have their patriotism questioned? Or do you believe their behavior was honorable dissent?

    I don’t know if you noticed, I have said more than a few times here that sort of talk from the extreme left is annoying… this is why Doug and others call me a moderate for not jumping on the “Bush = Hitler” shit… but to answer your question, yes they do deserve to have their partiotism questioned to a degree but no different than those on the right that want to ignore the realities of our policies in Iraq…

  230. 230
    Mark says:

    John Redworth says, in response to GOP4me, “yes they do deserve to have their partiotism questioned to a degree but no different than those on the right that want to ignore the realities of our policies in Iraq…”

    This makes no sense. If a person chooses to ignore the realities of Iraq, that says nothing about their love of country. All it speaks to is their competence. Similarly, if a person equates Bush with Hitler, this is a reflection on their competence, not on their love of country.

    Patriotism and competence: not synonymous.

  231. 231
    John Redworth says:

    This makes no sense. If a person chooses to ignore the realities of Iraq, that says nothing about their love of country. All it speaks to is their competence. Similarly, if a person equates Bush with Hitler, this is a reflection on their competence, not on their love of country.

    Mark…

    I stand corrected and yes, your idea makes a helluvalot more sense about it… I fell in to the trap in which competence and patriotism were synonymous… you are correct and my viewpoint has changed… thank you!

  232. 232

    […] However, I discovered long ago that all liberals are not moonbats, and that all conservatives are not wingnuts. (For the record, though…. many from both sides do seem to be totally around the bend.) […]

  233. 233
    DANEgerus says:

    Fine… I was against Afghanistan… until we went.

    Fine… I was against Iraq… until we went.

    But the hystrionic anti-Bush attitudes out there are not factually based. You have noticed the MSMs have managed to demonize Bush on the economy, which has never been better, on a hurricane, that missed the whiners(D) in New Orleans to hit the (R)’s in Mississippi & Alabama.

    You don’t really think any of this is about the truth?

    If we hadn’t gone to Iraq I ‘believe’, I ‘accuse’, actually I know… that every single Bush-basher would be squealing the identical arguments against Afghanistan that they are using against Iraq.

    If you check… you’ll notice a few slipped out.

    The (D)’s even taunt about ‘Bin Laden’, in response to any good news from Iraq, which takes nerve since Clinton(D) let the boy go twice.

    Because it isn’t about being ‘against’ a police action.

    And if we didn’t go to Iraq… WHERE would we have gone instead? WHAT would we have done?

    The war was over in weeks… the debate is about whether it is advantageous to use our forward deployment in Iraq to pressure Syria, Iran & Saudi Arabia to back down from supporting terrorism world wide.

    That is why our boys are in the meat-grinder… and we’d win it sooner if we were tougher on the Sunni elite that is sore after losing 5 centuries of minority rule.

    That forward deployment will not result in the creation of a democracy… it will result in the creation of a bureaucracy. A stagnant bureaucratic pit of indecision that will make Iraq no threat to anybody for a generation.

    Oh… and just for the record.

    Saddam was trying, Libya’s disarmed, Pakistan’s exposed, North Korea and Iran both confronted and so I was wrong…

    We were right to go to Afghanistan and Iraq.

    Bush postponed nuclear proliferation for a number of nations for decades…

    …and put us on Iran’s door.

  234. 234
    DANEgerus says:

    To support my claims:


    Nuancy.v.Nuancy

    Where I link to NRO, Dan Darling, Jeff Goldstein and Quin Hillyer for support.

    Not balanced… just… right.

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  1. […] However, I discovered long ago that all liberals are not moonbats, and that all conservatives are not wingnuts. (For the record, though…. many from both sides do seem to be totally around the bend.) […]

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