Join 3,552 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


W.’s Double Binds
July 20, 2004 12:20 PM   Subscribe

W.’s Double Binds - Rich Lowry.
posted by hama7 (85 comments total)

 
Wow, that was stupid.

If he manages to cut taxes or wage a war against Saddam Hussein with bipartisan support, he is a manipulative genius.

I don't recall anyone calling Bush a genius.
posted by Space Coyote at 12:27 PM on July 20, 2004


I don't think I've ever seen so many straw men knocked down so quickly in so few words. That was impressive.
posted by Prospero at 12:30 PM on July 20, 2004


If he stumbles over his words, he is an embarrassing idiot. If he manages to cut taxes or wage a war against Saddam Hussein with bipartisan support, he is a manipulative genius.

No one is claming that the bush administration is unintelegent. Or something.

This article is teh lame.
posted by delmoi at 12:34 PM on July 20, 2004


Moral of the Story: When you steal an election, the American public won't support you no matter what you do.
posted by banished at 12:35 PM on July 20, 2004


What is it with the right wing always making the argument that because two different people they disagree with say different things, that they (the rightist) must be right?


It's really irritating. It's only inconsistency if the same person says both things.


Unlike the conservative movement, we don't get talking points emailed to us every morning telling us exactly what to say and think.
posted by delmoi at 12:38 PM on July 20, 2004


This essay brilliantly points out the absurdity of assuming that all criticism originates from a single source.

Unintentionally, of course.

NR editorial as Mefi FFP. Mefi's right wing jumps the shark.
posted by goethean at 12:39 PM on July 20, 2004


That was just a study in Straw Men and False Dilemmas.
posted by bshort at 12:40 PM on July 20, 2004


If he imposes a U.S. occupation on Iraq, he is fomenting Iraqi resistance by making the United States seem an imperial power. If he ends the U.S. occupation, he is cutting and running.

How is this a contradiction? Both of those things are true, which is why he shouldn't have got himself into the situation in the first place.
posted by reklaw at 12:41 PM on July 20, 2004


So the question is: should I simply take this article, and decide that Bush really is doing a good job, it's simply that his critics hate him? Is Bush beyond the reach of criticism?

Would the same syndrome apply to Clinton? Or were his mistakes real mistakes and his criticism is deserved? Would the author of Legacy: Paying the Price for the Clinton Years be qualified to comment on this?

To use some mixed metaphors: sure, you can't make an omelete without breaking a few eggs, but you can break any number of eggs w/o making an omelete. Also: just because this porridge is too cold, and that porridge is too hot, doesn't mean there ain't porridge out there that is just right.
posted by weston at 12:43 PM on July 20, 2004


Unlike the conservative movement, we don't get talking points emailed to us every morning telling us exactly what to say and think.

No, you've got Metafilter for that.
posted by BirdD0g at 12:44 PM on July 20, 2004


If he imposes a U.S. occupation on Iraq, he is fomenting Iraqi resistance by making the United States seem an imperial power. If he ends the U.S. occupation, he is cutting and running.

I knew I had heard this before!

First you didn't want me to get the pony, now you want me to take it back, make up your mind!
posted by sonofsamiam at 12:45 PM on July 20, 2004


Wasn't Clinton in a double bind with the National Review then?
posted by trbrts at 12:45 PM on July 20, 2004


one, seeing hamasheaven's not-insane, art-related often good fpp's, is somehow tempted to consider him to be over 12 years of age. then comes crap like this, and his true identity as a slightly bookwormish, art-loving fascist 11-year-old is revealed for all to see.
and it's not a pretty sight.

Rich Lowry? Joseph Stalin on stick, hamas, even you can do better than that
posted by matteo at 12:51 PM on July 20, 2004


It's only inconsistency if the same person says both things.

Even that is not enough: The two things must actually be opposites. For example:

If he stumbles over his words, he is an embarrassing idiot. If he manages to cut taxes or wage a war against Saddam Hussein with bipartisan support, he is a manipulative genius.

The second item has nothing to do with the first item. To fit "damned if you do, damned if you don't" (see how do and don't are opposites?) the non-idiot action would have to involve his speech. And the moment Bush delivers an impromptu press conference in which he speaks eloquently or - hell - simply doesn't embarrass our entire nation in front of the world by looking like he has no idea what to do or say - I promise to be the first in line to say "The President is not an embarrassing idiot."

How sad that hama7 broke a long string of good non-political FPPs for this claptrap.
posted by soyjoy at 12:53 PM on July 20, 2004


> No, you've got Metafilter for that.
> posted by BirdD0g at 12:44 PM PST on July 20

Go back to your treehouse.
posted by goethean at 12:53 PM on July 20, 2004


hama7, thanks for this interesting link to japanese... hey, what the fuck is going on?
posted by The God Complex at 12:53 PM on July 20, 2004


If I read this article and respond with a reasoned and blow-by-blow description, I'll be wasting my time! If I respond with ad-hominem attacks, I'll be criticized for not responding to the points in the article! Therefore, hama7 is right!
posted by louigi at 12:55 PM on July 20, 2004


What is really striking about this quasi-high school editorial is the implicit assumption that if those criticisms are really just so unfair and kneejerk, then the opposite of the criticisms must be the fair or correct perspective. But then that creates all sorts of Bizarro-world positions that Lowry seems to want to take. For example, Bush's economy hasn't created new jobs. If it has created new jobs, they aren't well-paying jobs. If they are well-paying jobs, there is still income inequality in America -- well then, what's Lowry's perspective vis-a-vis jobs and the economy? That most of the recently-created jobs aren't in fact low-paying and the income gap isn't widening? Or that they are indeed low-income jobs and the income gap is widening -- but that Bush should be lauded for this? (Must be some of that compassionate conservatism we've heard so much about.)

Hama7, please: go back to posting your impressive finds of art and culture on the web. Your taste in those matters is frequently quite fine. But this? This piece is really just intellectually embarrassing.
posted by scody at 12:55 PM on July 20, 2004


Great Waves: Chinese Themes in the Arts of Korea and Japan.
posted by gwint at 1:01 PM on July 20, 2004


Of course, since people in this thread are criticizing the article for different reasons, we must be being inconsistent, and the article must therefore be the gospel truth.
posted by Space Coyote at 1:04 PM on July 20, 2004


If he says we're safer, he's lying, and if he doesn't say we're safer, he's implicitly admitting he's failed in his core duty as commander in chief.

Where is the double bind or the inconsistency here? Assuming for the moment we are not safer, then both of these clauses are perfectly correct and consistent.
posted by George_Spiggott at 1:10 PM on July 20, 2004


I don't recall anyone calling Bush a genius.

didn't ann coulter once remark as such on the bill maher show? and if I'm not mistaken, chris rock rebutted by accusing her of sucking the president's dick, which is probably true since you can't prove a negative!
posted by mcsweetie at 1:15 PM on July 20, 2004


Wow. The sad thing is that this pretty much sums up a lot of Right Wing logic. It's like a peek inside the mind of a proto-Coulter. Shudder.

If this is what passes for well reasoned debate over at teh TNR I can't think of any reason why they couldn't be arguing for cancelling elections and declaring a state of emergency.
posted by n9 at 1:20 PM on July 20, 2004


Is this hama7's attempt at a 'dead babies'?

[tickles hama7's tummy]
posted by Blue Stone at 1:23 PM on July 20, 2004


This essay brilliantly points out the absurdity of assuming that all criticism originates from a single source.

NR editorial as Mefi FFP. Mefi's right wing jumps the shark.


Did you just do that on purpose goethean?
posted by biffa at 1:25 PM on July 20, 2004


If he admits a mistake, he is damning his own governance in shocking fashion.

Hmm, did I miss something in all this playa-hatin' I been doing on Da Shrub?

Did Bush, in fact, admit to mistakes? And did a bunch of shrill liberals pounce on him for "damning his own government in shocking fashion"? I must have been on vacation when that happened.
posted by kozad at 1:28 PM on July 20, 2004


Well, that's what y'all (the anti-Bush collective) sound like when arguing/debating various political issues. He's damned if he does, damn if he doesn't, the whole administration for that matter... that's the way it reads anyway. Not all of you of course, but plenty for sure. I think that's about all of what the article is trying to point out. But feel free to over analyze it and take it far too seriously.
posted by Witty at 1:28 PM on July 20, 2004


That piece is 100% correct in tone, if not in every detail. Of course Republicans also hated everything that Clinton did, notably the missile attacks on Sudan and the war in Kosovo, and that is the very definition of partisan politics - blind, prejudicial opposition for the sake of obtaining power for yourself.

The point of the article is that the vast majority of the fury directed at Bush is exactly the same thing, partisan exuberance without reason or rationale most of the time. Hate Bush for Iraq, or whatever, but if you are honest with yourself and at least somewhat objective, you should be able to see and commend positives here and there, be they economic, environmental, geopolitical or whatever. At the very least, you could acknowledge that supporters of the current administration's policies have a right to their views and are not automatically baby-eaters, but fellow citizens (and a good number of them) who want what's best for the country, just like you.

Just screaming about Bush being a dumb Texas hick or Satan incarnate or the secret leader of the Freemasons is no different that screaming that Clinton was turning America into a common bawdy house and using Kosovo to distract America from his impeachment trial. And it's about as useful.
posted by loquax at 1:36 PM on July 20, 2004


hama7, I can honestly say, without a doubt, that you consistently post some of the most interesting links on MetaFilter. This is not one of them.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 1:36 PM on July 20, 2004


To use some mixed metaphors: sure, you can't make an omelete without breaking a few eggs, but you can break any number of eggs w/o making an omelete. Also: just because this porridge is too cold, and that porridge is too hot, doesn't mean there ain't porridge out there that is just right.

weston, quit yappin' and make us some breakfast, will ya?
posted by jonmc at 1:37 PM on July 20, 2004


Just screaming about Bush being a dumb Texas hick or Satan incarnate or the secret leader of the Freemasons is no different that screaming that Clinton was turning America into a common bawdy house and using Kosovo to distract America from his impeachment trial. And it's about as useful.

Here's the difference: The people accusing Bush of being "satan incarnate" or "the secret leader of the Freemasons", if they indeed exist, are on the very fringe. The people accusing Clinton of "turning America into a common bawdy house" were in Congress.
posted by Space Coyote at 1:41 PM on July 20, 2004


Well, that's what y'all (the anti-Bush collective) sound like when arguing/debating various political issues.

We probably do sound like that to the anti-intellectual, don't-bother-me-with-details "bottom-liners" on the Right. But if you actually listen to what we're saying, this double bind bullshit doesn't exist. It's not "overanalyzing", it's using basic logic.

Just screaming about Bush being a dumb Texas hick or Satan incarnate or the secret leader of the Freemasons

While there are plenty of jokes about Bush's lack of...um...complexity, that's hardly what the anti-Bush crowd is on about--especially here. By and large, it's the man's policies we detest.
posted by jpoulos at 1:42 PM on July 20, 2004


or....What Space Coyote said (far better than I did).
posted by jpoulos at 1:43 PM on July 20, 2004


Well, that's what y'all (the anti-Bush collective) sound like when arguing/debating various political issues.

I didn't realize "we'all" were a collective. I'm pretty sure we're a wide ranging bunch of moderates, liberals, and leftists who possess a diversity of opinions and perspectives. But I guess that's too complex a point, eh? Better to phrase it this way: If Bush critics all say exactly the same thing, they're all Stalinists marching in lockstep. If Bush critics don't all say the same thing, they're all a flock of chattering magpies.

Whee, this game of dispensing with all critical thinking skills is fun!

Just screaming about Bush being a dumb Texas hick or Satan incarnate or the secret leader of the Freemasons is no different that screaming that Clinton was turning America into a common bawdy house and using Kosovo to distract America from his impeachment trial. And it's about as useful.

I agree whole-heartedly. Interestingly, none of those criticisms Lowry "quotes" (and which you imply are just "partisan exuberance without reason or rationale") say anything about him being a dumb [faux-]Texas hick. They're summations of what seem to me to be reasoned, legitimate points of disagreement ranging from the economy to the war to the legitimacy of the 2000 election, even if they don't all line up exactly with each other. Some of them may even be criticisms that moderate members of Bush's own party have made.
posted by scody at 1:43 PM on July 20, 2004


...and yeah, Space Coyote pretty much nailed it even more succinctly.
posted by scody at 1:46 PM on July 20, 2004


This could have been a good post, if links were provided to actual facts, or actual quotes of the same people making those statements. Or, this could have been a good post on freerepublic. hey, this is fun!
posted by amberglow at 1:57 PM on July 20, 2004


However, many of the criticisms levied against Bush are just as valid for Clinton. If you vilify Bush for Iraq, you better have vilified Clinton for Kosovo. Remember the lack of mass graves there? Remember power being out in Belgrade for months? Remember the thousands of civilians that died in the bombing? If you're saying the US should have troops in Sudan, you better have wanted Clinton impeached for not sending any to Rwanda. Remember the millions that died while Slick Willy played the sax?

In terms of the rest of the political arena, policy differences between the Clinton administration and the Bush administration are by and large not polar opposites, but mostly a series of small variances. Bush has not repealed every environmental law, he's changed some. Clinton was no more likely to legalize gay marriage than Bush is, and in fact, Clinton did no such thing. Corporate malfeasance took place under his watchful eye as much as it did under Bush's. You catch my drift. In short, Bush has not ruined America, and cannot ruin it, even if he has another four years.

Again, vote him out in November for any reason you chose. But don't pretend to speak from an ethereal plane of existence, educating mere mortals about things they cannot possibly understand, no matter which side you're on. You're just playing politics within whatever narrow scope you've defined for yourself (myself included, of course).
posted by loquax at 1:59 PM on July 20, 2004


The point of the article is that the vast majority of the fury directed at Bush is exactly the same thing, partisan exuberance without reason or rationale most of the time.

I really have to disagree. I've lived in this country my entire life, which is more then 30 years, and don't remember there ever being a president who generated this across-the-board hatred and lack of respect. Even many right-wing friends of mine think he's an idiot and that his administration has made a lot of really major mistakes. Most of them will still vote for Bush, or so they say, but that's not the issue.

There will always be the 10-15% on both sides who slam anything and everything the other side does. But I don't think there has ever been a president who has aroused this much animosity, and inspired this little respect from the general populace.

Sure there are the 10% who this article probably does apply to (even then, he makes so many logic errors that it's questionable), but he is attempting to say that any criticism of Bush is based on Bush-hatred, and that's a proposition that won't go over well among the general population who have turned against Bush because of his ideas/policies, not because they are partisan ideologues.

I guess it really doesn't matter, because this article is written for (and will be almost exclusively read by) the 10-15% on Bush's side who need this to feel better about themselves and their candidate. I know several people who will see this article and think YES! because it gets them out of actually having to debate the issues, turning it all into "well you just hate Bush and blame everything on him..." It's a clever way to not have to debate the issues, especially the ones where Bush has clearly not performed up to the standards of the country. It's similar to the ploy of Bush fans at my office, if the copy machine breaks down, and saying "must be Bush's fault"
posted by chaz at 2:00 PM on July 20, 2004


But feel free to over analyze it and take it far too seriously.

Were it not for the fact that naive, deluded Bush voters took these things seriously, there would be no need to. The fact that they have a strange penchant to believe what they see on Fox News, read in The National Review, and hear on the Rush Limbaugh show means that frequently such idiocy as to be exposed for the silliness it is.

I'm glad that you, Witty, are not taken in by the ridiculousness peddled on the right.

I do find it funny that everytime someone points out that the right has written something stupid and non-sensical, the immediate defense is, "it was just a joke! can't you see that?!" From now on, I will regard all right-wing articles, FPPs, and MeFi comments as "jokes."
posted by deanc at 2:00 PM on July 20, 2004


jpoulos - Just read the thread about Saddam being captured. Perhaps you'll see what I mean (or what the author means).
posted by Witty at 2:07 PM on July 20, 2004


Two hours and 40 some-odd comments later, there's not a single comment from the original poster...doesn't that tell you something? Like he's not actually interested in having a debate, but just likes poking the bear?

Is there any better way to feed someone's smug sense of superiority than to "jump" every single time he says "Jump"?
posted by LairBob at 2:07 PM on July 20, 2004


Hate Bush for Iraq, or whatever, but if you are honest with and at least somewhat objective, you should be able to see and commend positives here and there, be they economic, environmental, geopolitical or whatever.

Name one of these positives. Really. You state that an honest person would find something to praise. Economic? Environmental? Geopolitical? His agenda and his track record are catastrophic on all these fronts -- in each and every case he's set hard won progress back decades. The left (and increasingly, the center and right) aren't being dishonest in finding nothing to praise, they really aren't finding anything to praise! The caricature of him isn't a caricature, it is the literal truth. If you hypothesized what a president would do if he were the way liberals paint Bush, you'd get.... the Bush presidency.
posted by George_Spiggott at 2:08 PM on July 20, 2004


Personally speaking, I used to self-identify with the Republicans, seeing as the left's economic policies are pretty much bunk, and I'm big on gun rights. I used to say to myself, "Self, what a country we'd have if we could just get Republican control of the White House and Congress, we'd get some work done! No more of this stonewalling and partisan bickering!"

After almost four years under this current government, my mental image of the Republican party has done a 180. Anti-liberty rulings by the Supreme court, deception from the white house (and I thought Clinton was a liar!), uncontrolled federal spending, federal intervention into states' rights, PATRIOT Act, propping up the DMCA, no-bid contracts to Halliburton, and attempting to desecrate the Constitution, the foundation of modern liberty, to suck-up to some people who are afraid two guys might get hitched.

They've got the DHS looking for drugs and immigrants, they're spying on what books we read at the library, removed any real obstacle to wiretapping arbitrary civilians, holding US Citizens in jail with no trial, and I'm afraid that there's worse we don't know about yet (Abu Ghraib).

I'm pissed. I love my country, and I'll tell you right now: Bush is no lover of liberty. I don't oppose him because of my knee-jerk tendencies, if anything, I lean the other way. But this adminstration has gone too far, time and again, and I'm telling everyone I know who will listen:

Kick this corrupt and incompetent man and all his cronies out of office.

Sorry to rant, but here's one anti-Bush activist who was forced into it.
posted by sonofsamiam at 2:16 PM on July 20, 2004


This could have been a good post, if links were provided to actual facts, or actual quotes of the same people making those statements. Or, this could have been a good post on freerepublic. hey, this is fun!
posted by amberglow at 3:57 PM CST on July 20


amberglow attacking hama7's post because of its nothing more than a single-source slanted post or that it belongs on a political website?

What's that h word?

amberglow

amberglow

amberglow

amberglow

amberglow

amberglow

amberglow

amberglow

ad nauseaum....


For the record, this FPP is just as poor as the ones on the other side of the spectrum that present nothing worthwhile and can't possibly lead to a legitimate discussion of the issues. But, the hypocrisy is almost refreshing to see the response by some of the posters in this thread who would embrace this sort of partisan shilling if it was merely on the other end of the spectrum.

If he loses in November, the voice of the American people has spoken a devastating verdict on his presidency. If he wins, he stole the election.

Methinks Mr. Lowry has been reading MeFi...

posted by Seth at 2:16 PM on July 20, 2004


Witty: Oh, so this was a joke we weren't supposed to take seriously? I didn't get it.

loquax: How is something "correct in tone"? Was the argument for invading Iraq "correct in tone"? Whatever does that mean?

Many hama7 was just trying to alert us to the increasing desperation of certain right-wing pundits. No matter what you learned on your high-school debate team, you can't argue that the Bush administration "wants the best for the country" anymore. It's made a mess of everything -- the economy, the environment and global politics. (I was going to put "especially" in front of one of those, but I couldn't decide which one.)

I suppose that leaves you in kind of a bind if you're a loyal Republican. I sympathize.
posted by judlew at 2:19 PM on July 20, 2004


I really have to disagree. I've lived in this country my entire life, which is more then 30 years, and don't remember there ever being a president who generated this across-the-board hatred and lack of respect.

chaz - Honeslty, I think this is all still fallout from 9-11... I really do, as opposed to straight-up political successes and failures. I think Gore, whether he went to Iraq or not, would find himself in a very similar position. I think if U.S. had suffered a similar attack during the "most-popular-president-of-all-time's" tenure, he/she would probably just as hated by a large segment of the population, war or not. 9-11 put EVERYONE on edge in this country, woke 'em up, kicked them in the ass, scared the crap out of them, enraged them, whatever. That's why I have a hard time just blanketly blaming Bush and his adminstration for everything. But I don't defend him either. I just think it's all a bit more complicated thatn that and many times, too complicated for me to even imagine a "better way of handling it" or an "alternative solution".
posted by Witty at 2:24 PM on July 20, 2004


How is something "correct in tone"?

It means that it's complete bullshit, but one wishes it were true. Another case of the Right's ability to ignore the details for some fuzzy ideal.
posted by jpoulos at 2:24 PM on July 20, 2004


The point of the article is that the vast majority of the fury directed at Bush is exactly the same thing, partisan exuberance without reason or rationale most of the time.

That may in fact be the point of the article.

However, as it is a demonstrably false claim, I question the value of the article.
posted by rushmc at 2:37 PM on July 20, 2004


weston, quit yappin' and make us some breakfast, will ya?

Good heavens, it all does come back to pancakes.

Or... have some inflation.

Now, is this Bush's fault?

Can someone pass the tabasco and maple syrup?
posted by weston at 2:47 PM on July 20, 2004


Unlike the conservative movement, we don't get talking points emailed to us every morning telling us exactly what to say and think.

[off topic] The Republican Party has a long history of successfully defending themselves with The Democrat Party's past history. Can't find the article's link - ironically it recently attacked The Democrat Party's initial use of the same tactic .
posted by thomcatspike at 2:48 PM on July 20, 2004


Name one of these positives.

After a very serious mis-step in the beginning ("Axis of Evil"), I like how they're handling North Korea - negotiating with them and involving the allies North Korean policy has an effect on.

The sting operation the Bush administration set up with Britain and Libya, to catch A.Q. Khan and embarrass Musharraf was brilliant - even if Ghaddafi first approached us, it took some brains to not turn the opportunity down.

Since the horrible, horrible miscalculation to invade Iraq, and to do so with as few troops as possible, they're working really hard to right the ship. Handing over power while keeping our troops there is a good idea. I'd like to see more troops there (I think the end result would be safer troops and a safer Iraq), but that's probably not politically viable.

They're gearing up for a draft, which (through the blunders of the Bush administration) has become necessary. Sure it's their fault the military is overextended, but now let's solve the problem. And let's do it without throwing Iraq to deal with the terrorists alone.

Still, I'm voting for Kerry.
posted by rocketman at 2:59 PM on July 20, 2004


I've lived in this country my entire life, which is more then 30 years, and don't remember there ever being a president who generated this across-the-board hatred and lack of respect.

Add 6 years, recall Carter and Reagan's second term. Recall a large # of Republicans that voted him in office turned on him. My first FPP that was axed, was how Bush’s 4 year tenure would imitate Reagan’s 1st four years in the popularity race{not that I thought they would be in the same chorological order}. Recall Reagan’s popularity #’s sorrowed after his attempted assignation. If you look at one of the planes involved in 9/11 being an attempt on Bush’s life at the White House….
posted by thomcatspike at 3:02 PM on July 20, 2004


amberglow

amberglow

amberglow

ad nauseaum....

that's funny--not one of those is a single link to an op-ed column...you'll have to try again, Seth. (and your attempt at derailing a thread has failed again, troll)
posted by amberglow at 3:04 PM on July 20, 2004


large # of Republicans that voted him “Him” being Regan. Add think the gas crisis destroyed Carter's popularity.
posted by thomcatspike at 3:06 PM on July 20, 2004


Can someone pass the tabasco and maple syrup?

i'm sure you meant corn syrup with maple flavoring added, because only the richest, fattest republican bastards are eating real maple syrup...
posted by quonsar at 3:09 PM on July 20, 2004


Bush in Lowry's words - slightly edited:

Although his advisors are manipulative geniuses who can drum up bipartisan support to wage a war against Saddam Hussein, he is an embarrassing idiot, who stumbles over his words.

He is endangering U.S. security by being unable (or unwilling) to capture Osama bin Laden until the time when it might influence the elections.

He is a dangerous unilateralist who ignores U.N. resolutions unless he can misinterpret them as being in favor of actions he has already decided on. He can't even get France to agree to his Iraq policy, but he supports multiparty talks on North Korea, wih far less friendly countries.

He shouldn't have bombed anyone at all without internatonal support. He had more reasons to bomb Saudi Arabia and Iran, anyway. He imposed a U.S. occupation on Iraq, fomenting Iraqi resistance by making the United States seem an imperial power, until it became to difficult to maintain - now he is cutting and running.

He plays alarmist politics by warning of terror attacks when it is politically convenient. In reality, when it comes to real threats, he is dangerously asleep at the switch. He has failed in his core duty as commander in chief, and if he says we're safer, he's lying.

He is unacceptably remaking American national-security policy by adopting a doctrine of preemption, but there are no indications that this will preevnt the United States from suffering a terror attack on his watch. He signs a far-reaching antiterror law, abridging civil liberties, which is not being used in any meaninful way to prevent another terror attack on his watch.

Bush's economy hasn't created new jobs. If it does manage to create a few new jobs, they won't be well-paying jobs (unless salaries for hamburger manufacturer's go way up). There is still income inequality in America.

He's miserly, opposing a prescription-drug benefit for the elderly, unless it's lining the pockets of the pharmaceutical companies. He's heartless - he restrains government spending, where it could be useful, while he's bankrupting the nation and robbing from future generations.

He's a tool of corporate interests - he opposes campaign-finance reform, unless he's abridging the First Amendment rights of Michael Moore (whose ads for Fahrenheit 9/11 might make him look bad).

He flip-flops on nation-building and testifying before the 9/11 commission, proving his own ill-intentions, cluelessness, or both. Meanwhile, he accuses John Kerry of flip-flopping, when the Massachusetts senator's nuance and thoughtfulness is actually a strength.

He doesn't admit mistakes, he is bullheaded and detached from reality. If he admits a mistake, well, we'll have to see the results if that ever happens.

He is saddling himself with an unpopular vice president, giving Democrats who can't wait to run against Cheney a political advantage because if he drops Cheney, he is admitting that the Democratic attacks against his vice president have hit home, thus giving Democrats who have made those charges a political advantage.

If he loses in November, the voice of the American people has spoken a devastating verdict on his presidency. If he wins, he probably stole the election again, with the help of Diebold, Karl Rove's rioters, and his brother in Florida.
posted by bashos_frog at 3:12 PM on July 20, 2004


Recall Reagan’s popularity #’s sorrowed after his attempted assignation.

ronny tried to cheat on nancy and it made his pollsters sad?
posted by quonsar at 3:13 PM on July 20, 2004


sometimes i eat real maple syrup, and i'm almost as far from rich, fat, or republican as you can get ... sometimes you just gotta splurge ...

seriously, Seth, sometimes i think you're a bot.

well done, bathos_frog. reworded, it's an excellent capsulation of the first GWB term.
posted by mrgrimm at 3:17 PM on July 20, 2004


that's funny--not one of those is a single link to an op-ed column...you'll have to try again, Seth. (and your attempt at derailing a thread has failed again, troll)
posted by amberglow at 5:04 PM CST on July 20


Are you delusional?

Every single one of those is a slanted single source post., you hypocritcal wanker. They are all shit for the same thing you criticize hama7's post for. Lots of people can and should criticize this thread, but you should keep your hypocritcal words to yourself.
posted by Seth at 3:19 PM on July 20, 2004


However, many of the criticisms levied against Bush are just as valid for Clinton. If you vilify Bush for Iraq, you better have vilified Clinton for Kosovo. Remember the lack of mass graves there? Remember power being out in Belgrade for months? Remember the thousands of civilians that died in the bombing?

They ARE the same! Remember the way NATO rejected us on Kosovo and we had to go it alone? Remember the indiginous populace that totally rejected us and fought against us every day after we invaded? Remember all the US troops that di- oh. Right.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 3:19 PM on July 20, 2004


I like it better when you stick to the artsy fartsy stuff, hama7.
posted by crunchland at 3:19 PM on July 20, 2004


i'm sure you meant corn syrup with maple flavoring added, because only the richest, fattest republican bastards are eating real maple syrup...

and canadians! don't forget us canadians!
posted by louigi at 3:21 PM on July 20, 2004


I'm a war president.

George W. Bush
Meet the Press
February 13th, 2004

Nobody wants to be the war president. I want to be the peace president.

George W. Bush
Campaign Speech
July 20th 2004


flippetyfloppetyflippetyfloppetyflippetyfloppetyflippetyfloppetyflippetyfloppetyflippetyfloppetyflippetyfloppetyflippetyfloppetyflippetyfloppetyflippetyfloppetyflippetyfloppetyflippetyfloppetyflippetyfloppetyalakazam!

He's not a juvenile delinquent--he's just misunderstood !

via Talking Points Memo
posted by y2karl at 3:22 PM on July 20, 2004


Hmmm.... well, Ok then. Let's get a new president.
posted by spilon at 3:25 PM on July 20, 2004


and you MeTa'd yourself?
posted by amberglow at 3:27 PM on July 20, 2004


This is hardly a hard news story is it amberglow?
posted by biffa at 3:27 PM on July 20, 2004


Well, XQUZYPHYR, first, the US didn't go it alone in Iraq. Second, between 5,000 and 10,000 Serbian civilians died, on top of another 5,000 to 10,000 Serbian soldiers. So is your problem only with the number of US deaths in Iraq? Or do you have a double standard for Republicans and Democrats?
posted by loquax at 3:32 PM on July 20, 2004


on the topic of "y3w silly knee j3rk libeRalZ! LOLZ":
i used to identify with the republican party. Im a big fan of fiscal responsibility, limited govnerment, and civil liberties. Oops, those got shit on. Ill be voting Kerry (*slightly* less evil). Also, my grandpa, staunch republican (to this day) has gotten to the point where he can't stand to look at the man. Smirky McChimp. This isn't all partisan squabbling.
posted by Tryptophan-5ht at 3:35 PM on July 20, 2004


Or do you have a double standard for Republicans and Democrats?

Certainly not for servicemen lost, where it's 0 to closing in on 1000, bleeding heart boy.
posted by y2karl at 3:36 PM on July 20, 2004


This is hardly a hard news story is it amberglow?

Take it to MeTa, biffa, or go play with Seth. That's not an op-ed by any sort of columnist. It's an interesting blog entry by a random guy. There's a difference, although i guess you can't tell that--One is published in a newspaper or magazine, like a Lowry column, and sometimes even syndicated nationally, and is usually written by a media talking head. If the post you highlighted was a Katrina vanden Heuvel column in the Nation that i had posted, you'd have a point, but you don't.
posted by amberglow at 3:38 PM on July 20, 2004


Or do you have a double standard for Republicans and Democrats?

loquax you can't honestly equate kosovo with iraq. You make yourslef look stupid by even trying.

It's a non-issue anyway, because people on the left were not exactly in lock step with Clinton's military policy to begin with, so the very premise of your equating the two doesn't hold anyway.
posted by Space Coyote at 3:38 PM on July 20, 2004


Witty, that's a good point, I do think there's some truth to that and I hadn't thought about that. However I do think, had we had a good, strong leader after 9/11 (neither Bush nor Gore) it may have been different.
posted by chaz at 3:43 PM on July 20, 2004


Seth, just to see what all the fuss was about, I checked out Amberglow's links that you posted. While you're right that they are all about a single issue, and that most (I think all but one or two) were a link to a single article, only one of those articles was an op-ed. So the comparison is not quite as apt as you made it out to be. Consistency is important, but I think Amberglow's posts were arguably newsfilter, and arguably agendafilter, but rarely if ever op/ed-filter which is what this post is about.
posted by chaz at 3:53 PM on July 20, 2004


I completely agree. Bush wouldn't have been my first choice as our post-911 leader, had I know that 9-11 was going to happen of course.
posted by Witty at 3:57 PM on July 20, 2004


trolly-troll troll
(but take moment to envision the global demonstrations that will ensue if he should manage to win the upcoming elections. This would be a special and unprecedented moment in US history)
posted by Fupped Duck at 4:05 PM on July 20, 2004


However, many of the criticisms levied against Bush are just as valid for Clinton. If you vilify Bush for Iraq, you better have vilified Clinton for Kosovo. Remember the lack of mass graves there? Remember power being out in Belgrade for months? Remember the thousands of civilians that died in the bombing? If you're saying the US should have troops in Sudan, you better have wanted Clinton impeached for not sending any to Rwanda.

Well... if W ever visits Iraq and they throw him a parade down George W. Bush Boulevard in Baghdad, then maybe we can compare the two.

As far as Rwanda goes, in a recent interview I read Clinton admitted that he wanted to do something sooner, or more, and he considered not being able to one of the biggest failures of his presidency.


Interesting that people talk about the post-9/11 leadership when it strikes me that so seemingly little was done in the months leading up to 9/11 that could have prevented it-- like the evidence that was ignored. It's something I bring up when people say "the world is different after 9/11" or "I'd still rather have Bush than Gore in office post 9/11". Two things: One, the world isn't different, we're just finally aware of it. Two, I don't see how you can throw out that hypothetical considering that if someone else had been in office 9/11 may NOT have happened.
posted by nath at 4:09 PM on July 20, 2004


I bet my dad is going to forward this to me sometime soon. ugh.
posted by dig_duggler at 4:29 PM on July 20, 2004


Sure it's their fault the military is overextended, but now let's solve the problem. And let's do it without throwing Iraq to deal with the terrorists alone.

That's debatable, but even granting it, surely one wouldn't want to leave the people responsible for the necessity of drafting our kids in power? (I see that you are voting for Kerry, but others don't seem to make this simple connection.)

9-11 put EVERYONE on edge in this country, woke 'em up, kicked them in the ass, scared the crap out of them, enraged them, whatever.

What in the world does any of that have to do with Bush's misdeeds, misdirections, and mistakes?

Bush wouldn't have been my first choice as our post-911 leader, had I know that 9-11 was going to happen of course.

I don't understand...unexpected bad things happen. History is full of them. Doesn't everyone vote for the person most capable of doing the job, whatever may come to pass during their tenure??
posted by rushmc at 4:44 PM on July 20, 2004


nath, on your latter point, precisely. One of the things Bush is at least suspected of is not doing enough to protect America in the first place. Perhaps if his administration had spent more of its transition time taking national security briefings from the outgoing administration than making up lies about White House vandalism there is a chance that this post 9/11 world of ours wouldn't have come to pass in the first place. And that's just where it starts. And what rushmc said -- misdeeds, failures, incompetence and cronyism that borders on rank corruption haven't got one damn thing to do with 9/11 "putting us on edge" or, as Witty so powerfully puts it, "whatever."
posted by George_Spiggott at 4:52 PM on July 20, 2004


<snip>If he doesn't admit a mistake, he is bullheaded and detached from reality. If he admits a mistake, he is damning his own governance in shocking fashion.</snip>

This would be a dilemma, if Bush had ever admitted any mistake at all. If you'll recall from Bush's most recent press conference:

<snip>
QUESTION: "Thank you, Mr. President. In the last campaign, you were asked a question about the biggest mistake you'd made in your life, and you used to like to joke that it was trading Sammy Sosa.

You've looked back before 9-11 for what mistakes might have been made. After 9-11, what would your biggest mistake be, would you say, and what lessons have learned from it?"

BUSH: I wish you'd have given me this written question ahead of time so I could plan for it... John, I'm sure historians will look back and say, gosh, he could've done it better this way or that way. You know, I just -- I'm sure something will pop into my head here in the midst of this press conference, with all the pressure of trying to come up with answer, but it hadn't yet."

</snip>
posted by zpousman at 4:57 PM on July 20, 2004


I think Gore, whether he went to Iraq or not, would find himself in a very similar position

Not at all. Iraq is the 'mistake' that will get Bush (or Gore had he went) out of office.

Bush would be doing quite well and would have a 2nd term almost a lock had the administration cleaned up Afganistan. Gore, I don't think, would have gone due to a lack of evidence. It is possible the 'tomahawk into Afganistan' program would have resumed under Gore, and the continuing interest in Al-Queda might have thwarted the 9-11-2001 attacks.
posted by rough ashlar at 6:42 PM on July 20, 2004


Would the same syndrome apply to Clinton?

Certainly not!.. Clinton got a blowjob, that's something much more unforgiveable than what's been going on under Bush. According to the National Review, of course.
posted by clevershark at 10:30 PM on July 20, 2004


Take it to MeTa, biffa, or go play with Seth.

Sure, just like you did with your complaint about this FPP. (Which isn't to say it's any good, you can both be in the wrong.)
posted by biffa at 1:51 AM on July 21, 2004


I remember, about 2 years ago, the standard refrain from rightwingers here was that we had all underestimated Bush. "Just wait" they said. "He'll show you". I'm still waiting.
posted by salmacis at 2:33 AM on July 21, 2004


I bet my dad is going to forward this to me sometime soon. ugh.
posted by dig_duggler at 4:29 PM PST on July 20


Here's an idea. Just reply to dad with a copy/paste from bashos_frog's interpretation of the article. I'm sure bashos_frog won't mind. It'll drive dad crazy!
posted by nofundy at 5:15 AM on July 21, 2004


« Older Flight crew beat up passenger:...  |  Most of the rhymes kicked ther... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments