Sunday, July 15, 2007

Of note

Thus was the debate in which (Mike) Huckabee cracked wise at John Edwards's expense a fascinating exercise in political dick-waving. Mitt Romney talked about wanting to 'double' the prison at Guantanamo Bay, and Tom Tancredo cited Jack Bauer, the fictional terrorist-stopper from Fox's hit 24. Only poor (John) McCain sounded a note of warning about the efficacy of torture, and what in the hell does he know about it, anyway? Not one of them could muster the courage to criticize by name a president whos performance had lodged his poll numbers in the vicinity of those owned by scabies and the mange. They're not going to run to end the war, none of them, except Ron Paul, the libertarian crank from Texas. They're wedded to the war not just by virture of being in the same party as the president who launched it, but because - as a piece of public performance - it is the perfect demonstration of the macho Kabuki that has come to define the politics by which they believe they have succeeded.

The war is a pestilence. Two thirds of the country knows it and suspects, angrily, who's to blame for it. But Mike Huckabee made his joke, and all the very manly men had a big old laugh about it, even though John Edwards shows more steel just getting out of bed in the morning than most of them did on the bravest day they ever lived.
- 'The Beauty Contest' by Charles S. Pierce
Esquire, August 2007


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't suppose I will ever understand the advocates of appeasement or the apologists for accomodation.

Churchill wisely called it "feeding the crocodile in the hopes that he will eat you last."

That sums it up about as well as anything I've ever read.

5:56 AM  
Blogger Jmac said...

I'll have to give you a star for using alliteration ... and, of course, nothing else in your 'argument.'

7:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No props for the Churchill quote?

Fact is, there's a butcher's bill to be paid. The longer you put it off, the higher it becomes. 3k soldiers in 4 years in Iraq? Pull out precipitously, and that will look like Sunday school. Finish the job, and it'll be a bargain at 10 times the price.

Would that it weren't so, but there it is.

7:13 AM  
Blogger hillary said...

even though John Edwards shows more steel just getting out of bed in the morning than most of them did on the bravest day they ever lived.

Can you explain this bit?

7:49 AM  
Blogger Jmac said...

Mea culpa on Churchill. The man had a bunch of good quips.

Listen, as I've said before, as of now I currently am not in favor of an immediate withdrawal, but it's not because I think we 'lose' or because terrorists will follow us back home. My concern would be providing support and assistance to the Iraqi people. This is more of a policing/rebuilding mission now in my book.

I'd also say that, by the majority of intelligence estimates, we're currently managing a sectarian conflict now and not fighting off massive the armies of doom. There are agents of al-Qaida at work there, but, again, most estimates suggest a U.S. withdrawal of forces would see the internal forces in Iraq band together to repel those elements.

7:50 AM  
Blogger Polusplagchnos said...

What exactly is it to "finish the job," anonymous? What is the purpose or goal that signals the end of the job?

Hillary, perhaps it's an allusion to the health problems faced by Edwards' family.

10:35 AM  
Blogger hillary said...

Yeah, Johnathan explained it to me off-blog, and it does make sense now (although I'm sure plenty of the chest-puffers have had family or personal health problems as well).

3:24 PM  
Blogger Xon said...

Hey, Dr. Paul's not a crank!

Hugs and kisses,

Xon, who enthusiastically tried to argue my grandparents into voting for Ross Perot in 1992 (when I was 14), for no apparent reason

9:13 PM  

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