Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Monkeys Throwing Poop

I read it in the NYTimes:

WASHINGTON, Jan. 10 - President Bush issued an unusually stark warning to Democrats today about how to conduct the debate on Iraq as midterm elections approach, declaring that Americans know the difference "between honest critics" and those "who claim that we acted in Iraq because of oil, or because of Israel, or because we misled the American people."

...In some of his most combative language yet directed as his critics, Mr. Bush said Americans should insist on a debate "that brings credit to our democracy, not comfort to our adversaries."

..."There is a difference between responsible and irresponsible debate and it's even more important to conduct this debate responsibly when American troops are risking their lives overseas," he said without specifically naming his critics.

Well, now, that's all well and good, Mr. President, but who defines "responsible" debate? You? Me (and the bottle makes three tonight)?

The DNC got all pissy n' bristle-y in a response:

The Bush Administration's attack, distract and distort tactics reflect a Nixonian paranoia that is un-American. It's shameful that once again the Bush Administration resorted to attacking the patriotism of fellow Americans rather than answering legitimate questions surrounding the President's failures in Iraq. Personal attacks won't change the fact that hundreds of fatalities in Iraq could have been avoided if only our troops had the equipment they asked for....Democrats welcome and will continue to push for the open and honest debate that is fundamental to our democracy and the liberties we hold dear.

Ignoring the shamefully inflationary rhetoric ("Nixonian paranoia"? Give me a break.), it's hard to disagree with this part: It's shameful that once again the Bush Administration resorted to attacking the patriotism of fellow Americans rather than answering legitimate questions surrounding the President's failures in Iraq.

Amen. Argue alllll you want about whether or not we should be in Iraq, but don't attempt to dress up questions about the safety of our troops (where is that body armor, anyway?) or about the way in which the post-war planning was handled (where is that electricity, anyway?) as un-patriotic. I support my troops. That doesn't just mean that I slap a magnet on the bumper of my car. It means that I'd like more of them to survive this.

Earth to politicians: Stop screeching and throwing your own poop at each other. It's inarguably fascinating, but it smells bad and it looks disgusting. If either of you gave a damn about the troops, you'd quit yer jibber-jabber and go buy some humvee armor.


At 9:53 AM, Blogger Jabawacefti said...

Where is the part where the patriotism is questioned of legitimate criticism? Maybe you're seeing something I'm not.

At 11:40 AM, Blogger codemorse said...

The way "responsible" versus "irresponsible" criticism of Iraq has been handled by this administration has been pretty clear-cut. You're with us, or your against us. People who criticize the war effort are "blame America firsters." If you question the way the war is being handled, you are "giving comfort to our enemies." Bush and Cheney have both stated that countless times.

I see those questions as legitimate criticism. But if we're to judge by words, the administration seems them as irresponsible.

My real point is that this argument is ridiculous. DO something. Y'know?

At 11:56 AM, Blogger Jabawacefti said...

I don't know. It seems to me that anytime someone from the administration challenges the criticism leveled towards it, there are countless cries of, "how dare you question my patriotism?"

As if questioning the judgment of someone leveling the criticism is akin to questioning that person's patriotism. Which is, of course, ludicrous.

It appears that the "critics" are good at dispensing criticism, but not so keen on taking it.

At 12:26 PM, Blogger codemorse said...

That's just bizarre to me. And I don't understand your impulse to make this stuff seemingly personal.

We can talk about this without implying deficiencies in one another's character.

At 1:17 PM, Blogger Jabawacefti said...

That's just because you have a very deficient character.

Oh, I'm just kidding.

I hope you're not taking this personally. That is an unintended consequence.

I guess what I was actually thinking of was the last Presidential election, when Conservatives were challenging Kerry's positions on Iraq, and he (or his defenders) kept on saying, "how dare you challenge my (or his) patriotism!"

That was what was in my mind, although I didn't write that.

So, seriously, no offense intended. Promise. I'll be good and shut up for a while. It's just hard sometimes. You've met my mother. You know from where I come.

So, once again. Sorry.

At 2:13 PM, Blogger codemorse said...

I'm not personally offended or anything. I just don't think it's necessary.

No need to shut up, though. Your thoughts are always appreciated. I'm, perhaps, overly sensitive to the way political discussions turn into snipe-fests. It's a personal pet peeve of mine.


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