Thursday, July 19, 2007

Astute (pr. "ass-toot")

[posted by Callimachus]`

Which is richer? A blurb from gasbag Glenn Greenwald praising as "astute" a leftish attack blogger who posts a piece attacking a right-side blogger for writing a sentence that runs on too long.

Or the very first comment, which, from a liberal blogger sitting (as far as I can tell) in the U.S. calls a conservative blogger bound for al Anbar a ... you guessed it: "chickenhawk."

As for the attacked blogger's allegation that the sole point of Democratic legislative tactics with regard to Iraq is, "staining the President's hands with blood and thereby profiting politically from the situation," I suppose it overstates the case, as charged. Certainly staining his own hands is one of Bush's proven capabilities.

But it is not an unreasonable reading, given the lack of a coherent explanation for what else they might be up to. Saying abandoning Iraq will make us safer, but then pulling off the protection of U.S. citizens who report suspicious activities at home; talking of more diplomacy without explaining who you have diplomacy with among terrorists; saying we'll remove ourselves as targets in Iraq but still keep troops in-country to hunt al Qaida without explaining how to do that without being a target.

In the same news cycle you have Barack Obama saying our leaving Iraq likely will spark a bloodbath, but that's not our problem, and John Kerry lying that America's abandonment of the battlefield won't spark a bloodbath, because it didn't in Vietnam.

And all the while the only thing they seem to do in harmony is complain that Bush is just drawing out the decision to end the war so the next president, presumably a Democrat, will have to take the blame for the retreat.

It reminds me of the old "Life" cereal commercial with the kids pushing the bowl back and forth, saying "I'm not gonna eat it." It doesn't necessarily imply they're saying, "you eat it." Because in the end they find a little kid and get him to eat it. Down there in Washington, however, there's only the two parties.

[Obama's off-the-cuff answer also included a perhaps-telling omission: "We would be deploying unilaterally and occupying the Sudan, which we haven't done. Those of us who care about Darfur don't think it would be a good idea." As also, incidentally, think those of us who "care" about the U.S. military.]

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