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This is What Democracy Looks Like
Today's Note From a Madman
Thursday, December 14, 2006
Before we all wonder about the
makeup of the Senate as it pertains to Senator Tim Johnson's (DEMOCRAT-SD)
health, let me just say that I wish Senator Johnson a speedy recovery. Although
the Senate makeup is in the balance, I hope he and his wife do what's best for
them and their family first.
And the same goes for Senator Craig Thomas (REPUBLICAN-WY) and his family. Senator Thomas was diagnosed with Leukemia this past election day.
McCain's Answer: Throwing Bodies at the Iraqi Problem
In much the same way that they throw money at their problems, the REPUBLICANS propose to throw troops at the problems in Iraq. The similarities are striking. Bush and his GOP brethren underfund programs with potential such as No Child Left Behind while throwing billions of dollars in tax give-backs to their "base" of "haves and have mores" and no-bid contracts to the likes of Halliburton, Bechtel and Blackwater, all war profiteers.
Yesterday, GOP Presidential candidate, Senator John McCain (REPUBLICAN-AZ) recommended throwing more troops at the problem in Iraq. Now, I've written that it's not too late to institute the Powell Doctrine of Overwhelming Force in Iraq, even today, but McCain appears to just want to throw American bodies in the way of more Iraqi insurgents' bullets and bombs rather than find a real way out.
IF, and it's a big "IF", you decide that a Powell-type force is necessary to police Iraq, another 15,000 to 30,000 more troops in Iraq simply won't do it. It will require an international force of Iraq's neighbors and other world powers to provide, at a minimum, half-million troops to police a nation of that size with the kind of violence going on there now.
McCain simply doesn't get it. Either do it the right way or get out of the way. An additional 15,000 to 30,000 more troops is only adding red, white and blue targets for the insurgency to practice on.
"The American people are disappointed and frustrated with the Iraq war, but they want us to succeed if there's any way to do that,"
They simply don't get it, do they?
It's too late for us to win a war which we already won... twice. That's not the goal. And relying on an anemic Iraqi government led by Nouri al-Maliki is ludicrous. This government, which is more loyal to Muqtadr al-Sadr than anyone else, is more concerned on getting revenge on the Sunnis than in rebuilding its nation.
"I'm not yet convinced that additional troops will pave the way to a peaceful Iraq in a lasting sense,"
-Senator Susan Collins (REPUBLICAN-ME)
And throwing troops at Iraq for political purposes, as I believe is McCain's objective, is not only dishonest at it's core, but it puts even more of our stretched-thin armed forces in the way.
We don't even know who the good guys or the bad guys are anymore.
"My fear is that if we have more troops sent to Iraq that we will just see more injuries and deaths, that we might have a short-term impact, but without a long-term political settlement,"
Exactly! Someone give this woman a Democratic Party membership card before she's blackmailed by Ken Mehlman, please.
"the Iraqis themselves (need to) begin to take aggressive action to disarm the militias, to stop the sectarian violence and to involve all the people in country to governance,"
-Senator Joe Lieberman (INDEPENDENT-CT)
Statements such as these are dangerous as well. What Senator Lieberman doesn't seem to understand is that the Iraqi government lacks both the desire and ability to take control over their own nation. This isn't a group of people concerned about their people. This is a group of politicians who will do anything to stay in power... Just like OUR politicians.
To speak of President Ahmadinejad's reprehensible action in convening a convention of Holocaust Deniers as a politically motivated ploy may be factually accurate, but misses the truth of the matter.
The President of Iran is stating that the Jews are separate and dangerous to God-fearing, truthful and patriotic citizens.
It is then only a short psychic distance to the mass hysteria needed to invoke a pogrom.
What distinguishes Ahmadinejad from the Nazis or the pogromists of Czarist Russia is that Ahmadinejad intends to conduct his pogrom against Israel herself.
Ahmedinejad's Holocaust Conference is not about oil or justice for the Palestinians, it is naked Jew-hating.
Ahmadinejad, as the Head of State of an ancient and honorable nation has thrown down the challenge. We cannot afford to believe that Ahmaninejad is merely playing a political card.
It is up to the rest of us to engage him and the Iranians in some constructive way and dissuade them from this course.
The honor and safety of the Iranians demand it.
If dissuading them proves unsuccessful we must be prepared to protect Israel, the Jews and by association, ourselves.
Our honor and safety demand it.
"President Bush has received a copy of the 96-page Iraq Study Group report. When they gave it to him, President Bush said, 'Don't tell me how it ends.' They said, 'Uh, it doesn't.'"
-As forwarded by David W.
In response to "Impeachment" Robert Chapman writes:
Impeachment is a bad idea.
Bush has not been a successful leader. He has set an example of perversity and moral emptiness that is disgraceful. Through his indecision and his transparent political posturing over Iraqi policy Bush is clearly damaging the office of the Presidency.
These are political offenses and not impeachable offenses.
We need to take hold of our courage again and go back to the vineyard of political action and build the coalitions needed to change our country. We need to get the trillions that are going annually into the bottomless pit of Defense appropriations.
We need to get the trillion in treasury expenditures that is going into Bush's unfair and inequitable tax deferment plan- a tax deferment plan, not a tax cut plan because we will pay those taxes and interest when the credit comes due. We need to re-think our social safety net and devise a new one that is better.
Forget impeachment, think of something new and work to implement it.
These are all political tasks and they are hard and they are consuming.
Wasting time talking about George W. Bush doesn't do anyone any good except George W. Bush and we have done enough for him already.
Let's change the system, not the leaders.
And Victoria Brownworth responds:
Cynthia McKinney has been lionized by the left in recent days for calling for the impeachment of Bush. Interestingly, African American leaders have uniformly spoken out against her calling her actions "desperate" and "the kind of grandstanding that made her constituents vote her out summarily" (these were comments from Faria Chideya's show News and Notes on NPR on December 12).
A group of distinguished African American politicians, academics and writers all explained why impeachment is just a mistake at this juncture. First on the list: Dick Cheney. Second on the list: the disruption engendered by impeachment. Each painstakingly reminded the audience of how the Republicans had previously utterly tied up the business of American government for an entire session with their impeachment of Bill Clinton for an extramarital affair.
How do I feel about impeachment? I think in this regard Nancy Pelosi is correct: it is a pointless exercise that is divisive and halts other activity in government. And of course, there is the Cheney factor. It's one thing to know he's running things behind the scenes and quite another to see him in the forefront. Alas, the stocks and pillories have been disbanded. Because that's where Bush and his cadre belong. But impeachment is not a viable option.
As one of those perennially hopeful people, it is my hope that Bush will be slammed by history and perhaps even get tried for war crimes. Regardless, impeachment does nothing for us except provide a Pyrrhic victory--maybe. (What if he wasn't impeached?)
I think the issue of impeachment is done and over. I think we need to focus on undoing the damage Bushco have done since Bush stole the office of President in 2000. That's a full time job, and then some. And far more essential to the nation than impeachment.
And David McReynolds adds:
Yes, I agree - not sure, personally, on impeachment, but on the clear constitutional crisis. The ISG was THE ESTABLISHMENT, not liberals, not secret pacifists. The center of power in this country has spoken - in terms that might keep some US control over the oil, etc., but Bush is not getting the message.
Something has to give . . .
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