Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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April 15, 2004
By: Kevin Drum

PARTISANSHIP vs. PATRIOTISM....Tom Bevan has a question for us lefties:

When your interest as a patriot (making changes for the better) and your interest as a partisan (making Bush look bad) conflict, which interest do you put first?

The 9/11 Commission should generate exactly such a conflict among liberals because the more partisan the Commission becomes, the less likely they are to find the truth and the less likely the Commission's final report will have legitimacy in the eyes of the public.

Sadly, however, many on the left don't seem able to either recognize the conflict in the first place or resist the temptation of putting partisanship above patriotism.

It's funny that conservatives only started complaining about partisanship when the 9/11 commission started producing testimony damaging to George Bush, isn't it? But where were they when he resisted setting up any kind of commission in the first place? Or when he then tried to make a joke out of it by appointing Henry Kissinger as its head? Or on the repeated occasions when he stonewalled the commission when it requested needed documentation and testimony?

Histrionics are not the only sign of partisanship. On the contrary: although preventing an investigation because it might damage you politically is more subtle, it's every bit as partisan. What's more, it's probably more dangerous in the long run, especially when it comes from a commander-in-chief whose party controls every branch of government.

So tell me again who's putting partisanship above patriotism. And his middle initial better be W.

Kevin Drum 6:06 PM Permalink | Trackbacks

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