Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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May 29, 2007
By: Kevin Drum

FEAR MONGERING....Chutzpah watch:

President Bush today accused opponents of his proposed immigration measure of fear-mongering to defeat it in Congress, and took on his own conservative political base as he did so.

"If you want to scare the American people, what you say is the bill's an amnesty bill," Mr. Bush said this afternoon at a training center for border enforcement agents located in this town in Georgia's southeastern corner. "That's empty political rhetoric, trying to frighten our citizens."

Can't have that, can we? After all, there's nothing worse than frightening the public for crass political purposes. Anybody who does that should be ashamed of themselves.

Kevin Drum 7:04 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (35)

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Comments

Pot meet kettle.

Posted by: Ron Byers on May 29, 2007 at 7:14 PM | PERMALINK

Un. Fucking. Hinged.

Posted by: Blue Girl, Red State (aka G.C.) on May 29, 2007 at 7:19 PM | PERMALINK


Bush's mind isn't shaped by the will of logic.
It is shaped by the will to power.

This is true for most conservatives.

Inconsistencies are friendly hobgoblins that rule their minds.

Pointing out logical flaws to them is a waste of time. Better to beat them with a stick. They understand that just fine....

Posted by: ROTFLMLiberalAO on May 29, 2007 at 7:20 PM | PERMALINK

A politician will get away with whatever the people and the media will allow him to.

Why is GWB's attempt to do so noteworthy?

Posted by: gregor on May 29, 2007 at 7:22 PM | PERMALINK

After all, there's nothing worse than frightening the public for crass political purposes. Anybody who does that should be ashamed of themselves.

Yep. Like liberals frightening the American people with their talk of "civil war" in Iraq. Or how hard it is to pay medical bills in order to justify government controlled health care. Or how bad the economy is and how high unemployment is. All of those are typical liberal scare mongering.

Posted by: Al on May 29, 2007 at 7:29 PM | PERMALINK

I'm one of the people Bush is criticizing, but he's mis-stating my position. I do think the bill is effectively an amnesty, but that's not my fear.

What bothers me is that it leaves the borders still open. I'm afraid that we'll have millions more illegal immigrants here in a few years. Or, new immigrants may be able to get fake evidence, so they might get legal status.

In other words, under this bill, I'm afraid that the United States will lose the ability to define who should be a legal resident of our country.

If there were a fence along the entire border and if we could count on reliable enforcement, then I'd be OK with an amnesty for the illegal immigrants who are here now.

Posted by: ex-liberal on May 29, 2007 at 7:31 PM | PERMALINK

When it comes to missing the point by a friggin' mile, you could write a book, Al. But first you'd have to learn how to read.

By the way, they've eased literacy standards in the U.S. Army, so why are you still here? Because you're a bloviating coward? If you don't answer, we'll know that you're busy pissing your jammies again.

Posted by: Kenji on May 29, 2007 at 7:35 PM | PERMALINK

Bush Co. is so delusional that they don’t even blush when what they say is so ironic. Or demonstrably false.
They just don’t care what anyone thinks about them.

Posted by: bobbywally on May 29, 2007 at 7:39 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin, I see your Chutzpah, and I raise you this:

the Archdiocese of St. Louis is suing a law firm that handles clergy sex abuse cases, claiming it is improperly circulating confidential documents related to eight current or former priests.

Posted by: Disputo on May 29, 2007 at 7:44 PM | PERMALINK

'That's empty political rhetoric, trying to frighten our citizens.'

Doublethink in action right there folks.

Posted by: jg on May 29, 2007 at 7:48 PM | PERMALINK

Interesting how Bush twists fear to the topic of the moment, but what is even more frightening is just how many people buy into his fear-mongering!

Posted by: fred on May 29, 2007 at 7:49 PM | PERMALINK

So, is there any macro or script I can use so I can just not see posts by Al or ex-liberal? I'm not saying they should be banned, just that I'd love not to read their stuff.

Maybe just a style change so that the name of the commenter comes before the comment?

Posted by: Sandy H on May 29, 2007 at 7:51 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, what really scares Americans is "Amnesty".

Posted by: Boronx on May 29, 2007 at 8:00 PM | PERMALINK

Sandy H, ifyou don't want to see my posts, I suggest you paint Wite-Out on your screen to cover them. :)

Posted by: ex-liberal on May 29, 2007 at 8:04 PM | PERMALINK

"That's empty political rhetoric, trying to frighten our citizens."

Why the hell is it blogs that latch on to the hypocrisy and "untruthiness" of this adminstration, and the press lets it slide by.

Has the US press ever been so supplicant to the adminstration?

Not in my life time.

So why do the press wonder why they are losing relevance?

Posted by: notthere on May 29, 2007 at 8:18 PM | PERMALINK

Al, I never understand how you get to where you are without mind-changing drugs, and then I remember that you probably forgot to take your meds.

Want to cite anything, anything FACTUAL that might substantiate that what you are upset about is untrue.

Mmm. Think we should be waiting on this one.

Posted by: notthere on May 29, 2007 at 8:24 PM | PERMALINK

Irony alert: "ex-liberal" complains about Bush "mis-stating my position."

Further irony alert: "ex-liberal" continues to post here, without shame, as if the drubbing he/she/it took in the "Four Years" thread never happened.

Posted by: Gregory on May 29, 2007 at 8:52 PM | PERMALINK

"ex-liberal" wrote: Sandy H, ifyou don't want to see my posts, I suggest you paint Wite-Out on your screen to cover them.

Sandy, "exliberal" takes a perverse pleasure in posting intellectually dishonest neocon bullshit here. It's a deliberate insult, much like his/her/its handle and just as phony. The more often an argument has been debunked, the greater pleasure "ex-liberal" seems to take in repeating it.

I am on record as agreeing, however, that the name of the poster should precede the comment.

Posted by: Gregory on May 29, 2007 at 8:55 PM | PERMALINK

But, with more coming across the border, you will have more Yellow Cabs driving down Alvarado to represent, FAUX.

Of course, there will be more of Mrs Li types turning left at 3rd.

But, yes, I despise Shrub - But, funny thing. Sixty three percent of the American public supports time lines for withdrawing from Iraq. Shrub ignores them, while the Democratic Non-leadership whines over where their support might be. Whine while our troops die, Reid and Pelosi. As long as Shrub and Cheney are in the White House, and Reid and Pelosi are in Congress, the body bag industry will keep florishing.

Posted by: thethirdPaul on May 29, 2007 at 9:41 PM | PERMALINK

Obvious to those of us who follow this issue, both Bush and his "liberal" collaborators such as Teddy Kennedy are completely wrong about this issue, and it's they who don't have the U.S.'s best interests at heart. It would perhaps be a bit more helpful to the national debate if Kevin Drum could deal with this subject honestly instead of simply going for the low-hanging fruit. WM's/Drum's habit of deleting comments - and even editing comments without noting they had been edited - indicates that they're not interested in a healthy debate, but simply Atrios-level red meat throwing.

Perhaps Kevin could follow up with a discussion of the fear mongering that those on their side (Bush's and Drum's) engage in, such as claiming that we need massive amounts of low-skilled labor in order to pay for SS, or by bullying opponents by calling them names such as "nativists" or worse. Kevin Drum has engaged in such name-calling, as have Bush and his proxies.

Of course, the way the whole "debate" is handled could change at any moment.

Posted by: TLB on May 29, 2007 at 10:34 PM | PERMALINK

In other words, under this bill, I'm afraid that the United States will lose the ability to define who should be a legal resident of our country.

Makes as much sense as other wingnut fears. Such as the fear that if we stop letting American soldiers die trying to referee a civil war in Iraq, they'll "wake up to the call to prayer from a Muslim muezzin ... while Talibanic enforcers cruise our cities burning books and barber shops" (http://www.talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/014357.php). Or the fear that their own marriages will fall apart if gays can also marry. Etc.

Posted by: bob on May 29, 2007 at 11:13 PM | PERMALINK

"Obvious to those of us who follow this issue, both Bush and his "liberal" collaborators such as Teddy Kennedy are completely wrong about this issue, and it's they who don't have the U.S.'s best interests at heart."

Well, sure, if you're a whacko nutjob with a fixation on immigration and an advanced case of paranoia. The rest of your ad hominem attacks were amusing but, as usual, devoid of content.

Posted by: PaulB on May 29, 2007 at 11:18 PM | PERMALINK

Hear! Hear!

I am on record as agreeing, however, that the name of the poster should precede the comment.

Posted by: Hear! Hear! on May 30, 2007 at 12:31 AM | PERMALINK

tlb writes:

Obvious to those of us who follow this issue, both Bush and his "liberal" collaborators such as Teddy Kennedy are completely wrong about this issue

It's not obvious to me - in fact, it seems to be a reasonable position to assume, given that with these millions of illegals here, our unemployment rate has been at historic lows.


WM's/Drum's habit of deleting comments - and even editing comments without noting they had been edited - indicates that they're not interested in a healthy debate

Not sure if you can call it a habit, because it only started happening recently, and also because for years, Kevin hasn't refereed the messages at all, much to the chagrin of readers of his blog. Trust me - it's far better to have the messages edited than have another blog filled with Chinese spam.

Posted by: Andy on May 30, 2007 at 1:18 AM | PERMALINK

It's not obvious to me - in fact, it seems to be a reasonable position to assume, given that with these millions of illegals here, our unemployment rate has been at historic lows.

If we have millions of illegal aliens coming here to found a new third world sector of workers in landscaping, car detailing, and "cuidado de ninos," this is not necessarily healthy.

Unemployment figures from the gov are much like WMD intelligence. They are based on new unemployment claims, not on actual unemployment figures.

Posted by: Luther on May 30, 2007 at 1:47 AM | PERMALINK

"After all, there's nothing worse than frightening the public for crass political purposes. Anybody who does that should be ashamed of themselves."

umm, global warming, anyone?

Again, the lack of self-awareness is mind-boggling.

Posted by: am on May 30, 2007 at 3:31 AM | PERMALINK

Bush years lesson #1: There is nothing that the Bush and his administration can do or say that is not ironic.

Bush Years lesson #2: If George Bush approves of it, we can be confident that this approach will accomplish the opposite of what it was intended to do.

According to Paul Krugman, high levels of immigration lowers wages for less skilled native born workers, increases inequality and dilutes democracy (because non-citizens can't vote.) Alas, his column is behind a subscription wall, curse you, NYTimes.

We can predict what will happen to the guest worker program. In a few years, we will start hearing stories about the number of guest workers who have put down roots while they were working in the US, and Americans will be told that it is insensitive, cruel and impossible for us to force guest workers back...meanwhile, Americans will still be complaining about declining wages, rising inequality and the erosion of American democratic values.

Posted by: PTate in FR on May 30, 2007 at 7:46 AM | PERMALINK

As PTate in FR says so well, in a few years we will be hearing more about the reasons for passing Simpson III, followed by Simpson IV, etc.

Posted by: thethirdPaul on May 30, 2007 at 9:47 AM | PERMALINK

Josh Marshall: "Enhanced interrogation", the Bush administration's preferred newspeak for torture, appears to have been coined by the Nazi Party in 1937. There are way too many facile comparisons of whatever group or individual we dislike to Nazis. But when the shoe fits.

Are you now going to take it to Josh Marshall, Kevin, like you did to Mark Kleiman, for what I'm sure you will find is just a coincidence between Nazi terminology and Bushista terminology?

Posted by: anonymous on May 30, 2007 at 10:32 AM | PERMALINK

Well, if the swastika fits........

Posted by: thethirdPaul on May 30, 2007 at 10:43 AM | PERMALINK

Andy, refering to Kevin Drum's/Washington Monthly's documented habit of deleting and editing comments without noting that they had been edited, says: Not sure if you can call it a habit, because it only started happening recently, and also because for years, Kevin hasn't refereed the messages at all, much to the chagrin of readers of his blog. Trust me - it's far better to have the messages edited than have another blog filled with Chinese spam.

Drum/WM haven't just deleted spam, they've broadened the definition to include what they apparently consider "spam": comments with which they disagree.

And, last I checked, older entries at WM as well as at Calpundit are clogged with spam. That means that anyone linking to any blog pages at either site might be linking to pages filled with the worst spam imaginable. And, that may affect your search rankings, with google thinking you're somehow supporting or affiliated with those spammers.

In summary: rather than doing the right thing and simply deleting real spam on older entries, Drum/WM have left that in place (last I checked) and gone after the occasional real comment.

Posted by: TLB on May 30, 2007 at 11:59 AM | PERMALINK

Bush can't win with Kevin. Even when advocating a democrat position, he gets slammed. But I do think that the "frighten" comment is stupid. The issue ought to be debated on the merits. The bill obviously offers a form of amnesty. Bush should truthfully acknowledge it and explain why he thinks it is justified. If he can't win that debate on the merits, then the law should not be passed. But it is a problem because the concept of amnesty is hard to sell.

Posted by: brian on May 30, 2007 at 12:46 PM | PERMALINK

Using "amnesty" to scare people? Polls suggest a majority of Americans are for some sort of amnesty for people who are already here. Amnesty only scares the hard core right wingers and the racists.

Posted by: Fred on May 30, 2007 at 1:13 PM | PERMALINK

brian: But it is a problem because the concept of amnesty is hard to sell.

Except when trying to sell it for Libby to conservatives like brian.

Posted by: anonymous on May 30, 2007 at 4:23 PM | PERMALINK

Does "TLB" stand for "The Lying Bastard?"

Seems appropriate, given TLB's dishonest post about Kevin's comment editing.

Posted by: anonymous on May 30, 2007 at 4:25 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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