Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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June 19, 2007
By: Kevin Drum

THE VERY SERIOUS RUDY GIULIANI....Via Steve Benen, I see that Craig Gordon of Newsday explains a mystery today: How did Edwin Meese of all people end up as one of the Republican representatives on the Iraq Study Group? Answer: He was a last minute replacement for Rudy Giuliani, who was originally appointed to the group but couldn't be bothered to show up to meetings:

Giuliani left the Iraq Study Group last May after just two months, walking away from a chance to make up for his lack of foreign policy credentials on the top issue in the 2008 race, the Iraq war.

He cited "previous time commitments" in a letter explaining his decision to quit, and a look at his schedule suggests why — the sessions at times conflicted with Giuliani's lucrative speaking tour that garnered him $11.4 million in 14 months.

....By giving up his seat on the panel, Giuliani has opened himself up to charges that he chose private-sector paydays and politics over unpaid service on a critical issue facing the nation.

Amazing. This has been common knowledge for months, but this is the first time I've heard about it. For some reason, the mainstream press apparently thinks this decision from America's Mayor is hardly even worth a yawn. Too substantive, I guess. Back to the haircuts and blind trusts, boys and girls.

Kevin Drum 1:42 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (43)

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Comments

Huh. I would have surmised that he got kicked off because he's such an asshole no one else could stand to be in the same room with him.

Posted by: Glenn on June 19, 2007 at 1:43 PM | PERMALINK

See? Just shows you shouldn't jump to conclusions!

Posted by: Kevin Drum on June 19, 2007 at 1:45 PM | PERMALINK

make up for his lack of foreign policy credentials

But, but, he's America's Mayor. He was THERE on 9/11.

Posted by: MSM on June 19, 2007 at 1:55 PM | PERMALINK

I'm surprised they bothered now.

Posted by: Mark-NC on June 19, 2007 at 2:00 PM | PERMALINK

He was there, but didn't seem to care what happened to the people who worked on the site afterward. I wonder how many people will die early because of his indifference to safety at Ground Zero.

Posted by: freelunch on June 19, 2007 at 2:02 PM | PERMALINK

Rudy's too busy being impressive to do anything impressive.

but, regardless, sorry. Edwards has pretty hair and Hillary's husband shot Vince Foster. that's all you need to know about who to vote for in 08.

Posted by: cleek on June 19, 2007 at 2:03 PM | PERMALINK

"Amazing. This has been common knowledge for months, but this is the first time I've heard about it."

Kevin, apparently you're the only one in America who cared about who served on the Iraq Study Group. For the GOP's conservative base, Guilani's decision not to be on it is probably a plus in his favor.

Posted by: Chicounsel on June 19, 2007 at 2:04 PM | PERMALINK

...and Hillary's husband shot Vince Foster.

C'mon, cleek, get your facts straight! Everybody knows that Hillary shot Vince Foster because he threatened to go public with their affair. And Hillary's a lesbian.

Or something...

Posted by: MeLoseBrain? on June 19, 2007 at 2:06 PM | PERMALINK

"Amazing. This has been common knowledge for months, but this is the first time I've heard about it."

Kevin, apparently you're the only sentient being in America who cared about who served on the Iraq Study Group. To the GOP's conservative base, Giuliani's decision not to be on it is probably a plus in his favor.

Posted by: Chicounsel on June 19, 2007 at 2:07 PM | PERMALINK

Apologies for the double post accidentally hit post instead of preview and thought I caught it in time.

Posted by: Chicounsel on June 19, 2007 at 2:09 PM | PERMALINK

Have to agree with Chico. This is a plus for Rudy. Snubbing the Iraq Surrender Group will be only serve to help his cause.

Posted by: BlaBlaBla on June 19, 2007 at 2:09 PM | PERMALINK

Heh...Giuliani ducks civic duty to bring in some big speaker's fees.

I guess the idea of Republican leadership is all about looking the part and saying the right lines...When it comes to doing the work of leadership, there's usually something else to do.

Posted by: grape_crush on June 19, 2007 at 2:23 PM | PERMALINK

chicousnsel is right. here is part of an e-mail Jonah Goldberg pasted on The Corner:

Hey Jonah,

So Rudy quit a panel that, in the end, advocated a complete surrender in Iraq and for us to get on our knees to Iran?

This is bad why? His mistake was not to quit. His mistake was not to fail to attend meetings. His mistake was to ever have his name attached to this joke of a commission in the first place.

Posted by: sean on June 19, 2007 at 2:26 PM | PERMALINK

As you correctly imply, Kev, one would think that the guy being lauded as a hero for his actions on 9/11 and using it to make millions would actually give a damn about the way to defeat the supposed terrorists that were (but actually were not) involved.

Posted by: Kiweagle on June 19, 2007 at 2:30 PM | PERMALINK

"So Rudy quit a panel that, in the end, advocated a complete surrender in Iraq and for us to get on our knees to Iran?"


I didn't read that part. You got a quote you could share?

Posted by: David in NY on June 19, 2007 at 2:30 PM | PERMALINK


advocated a complete surrender in Iraq and for us to get on our knees to Iran?


Must have missed that page. Or I didn't have the King Rush Version.

Posted by: ckelly on June 19, 2007 at 2:32 PM | PERMALINK

Didn't you know that those who refuse to buy into W's neverending war are advocating a complete surrender, David?

Posted by: freelunch on June 19, 2007 at 2:34 PM | PERMALINK

cancel my last comment

Posted by: David in NY on June 19, 2007 at 2:38 PM | PERMALINK

The other question is what his qualifications even were for getting appointed to the Iraq Study Group in the first place. He has no relevant knowledge of the region, of foreign or national security policy, of history, of military affairs, etc. etc. So what exactly did they expect him to bring to the table???

Posted by: Stefan on June 19, 2007 at 2:41 PM | PERMALINK

As this article makes clear, none of the presidential hopefuls is wondering where their next meal is coming from. If only common people still had a chance of achieving the highest office in this great land. What makes Combover Giuliani particularly repulsive, however (besides his hairdo), is his willingness to tolerate political corruption and his complacency towards racist attitudes, as this article makes clear.

Posted by: The Conservative Deflator on June 19, 2007 at 2:46 PM | PERMALINK

no relevant knowledge of the region, of foreign or national security policy, of history, of military affairs, etc. etc.
sounds like the perfect MO for a bush appointment

Posted by: BlindJoeDeath on June 19, 2007 at 2:51 PM | PERMALINK

Sort of like how Fred Thompson, he of the 1.33 terms in the Senate, decided to burnish his credibility after 9/11 by going back to "Law and Order".

Posted by: Col Bat Guano on June 19, 2007 at 2:52 PM | PERMALINK

The other question is what his qualifications even were for getting appointed to the Iraq Study Group in the first place. He has no relevant knowledge of the region, of foreign or national security policy, of history, of military affairs, etc. etc. So what exactly did they expect him to bring to the table???

His calm, encouraging instruction, "Everyone south of Canal Street, begin walking north!" is all the foreign policy, national security or military affairs experience anyone will ever need. And yet you naysayers and nitpickers keep demanding more, more, more.

Posted by: shortstop on June 19, 2007 at 3:02 PM | PERMALINK

Speaker's fees weren't the issue. Giuliani did not want to commit himself with the Study Group's analysis and recommendations -- he needs "flexibility" for his run ... finger to the winds, etc..

Posted by: jb on June 19, 2007 at 3:16 PM | PERMALINK

Maybe he saw the group for what it was- useless. I would be more inclined to vote for him because he walked away from it.

Posted by: Yancey Ward on June 19, 2007 at 3:27 PM | PERMALINK

Rudy is a hero not because of 9-11, but because he beats do no gooder liberals over the head with their own stupid policies. The fact his, he whipped a buch of snotty nose liberals (inlcuding the the welfare pimps, the race hustlers, and the unionist) into place here in NYC for 8 straight years and the City is far better off for it. And anyone with an ounce of itellectual honesty will admit this(this excludes liberal bloggers and their sycophants of course).

The moonie blogosphere despises Rudy because they fear him (and his accomplishments in conservative government), they know very well that if it comes down to Hillary V. Rudy in 08 that Rudy will win - easily. This is the reason behind the rush of the mooniesphere (from Sullivan to Drum) to try an elevate these non stories to a big deal.

How long before we hear the 9-11 communication center BS in this thread? 3,2,1 ...

Posted by: BlaBlaBla on June 19, 2007 at 3:30 PM | PERMALINK

The moonie blogosphere

conservative savior and Wash Times publisher, Rev Moon has his own blogosphere, too?

Posted by: cleek on June 19, 2007 at 3:59 PM | PERMALINK

Ah, Kevin.

May I remind you that Bill Clinton, husband to the Democrat frontrunner canidate, also has a lucrative speaking career which has netted the Clintons about $50M after his presidency.

But we never hear you talk about that, huh?

Posted by: egbert on June 19, 2007 at 4:26 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, egbert, that Clinton really let his speaking career interfere with his role on the IRaq Study Group, didn't he? Just like that Giuliani.

Sheesh.

Posted by: David in NY on June 19, 2007 at 4:39 PM | PERMALINK

Rudy is a hero not because of 9-11...

That will come as news to Rudy.

Posted by: Tyro on June 19, 2007 at 4:51 PM | PERMALINK
It is a factual history of New York City…. and how Giuliani saved it….mhr at 4:17 PM
Giuliani, the Great White Hope of RepubliConTarians and his puppy-killing spouse. Posted by: Mike on June 19, 2007 at 4:51 PM | PERMALINK

"Prince of the City," by the way, is published by a conservative publishing house, Encounter Books. And Fred Siegel -- the supposed "liberal Democrat" author -- is a fellow at the Manhattan Institute. Pardon me if I don't accept the book as serious scholarship as opposed to hagiography.

Posted by: Glenn on June 19, 2007 at 5:10 PM | PERMALINK

know very well that if it comes down to Hillary V. Rudy in 08 that Rudy will win - easily.

Yeah, just like Rudy beat Hillary in 2000 when he ran against her for the Senare race in New York...oh, wait. That didn't actually happen, did it? Right, right, Rudy was so scared of the shellacking Clinton would have given him that he cut and ran.

Seriously, if Rudy was too frightened to face Hillary Clinton how is he ever going to stand up to Osama bin Laden?

Posted by: Stefan on June 19, 2007 at 5:30 PM | PERMALINK

in NYC for 8 straight years and the City is far better off for it

And all those criminals were so scared of Rudy the crime rates started dropping during Dinkins Donuts' last year in office because...

As a white suburban guy within train tourism distance of NYC, Rudy still has me wondering how many black doctors, lawyers and accountants had to be pulled out of their cars and pushed facedown to the pavement by the NYPD to make the city safe for the likes of me.

Posted by: ThresherK on June 19, 2007 at 5:36 PM | PERMALINK

If Rudy gets so much credit for being Mayor during 911, why does Nero get the same credit for the burning of Rome?

Posted by: Robert on June 19, 2007 at 5:46 PM | PERMALINK

Seriously, if Rudy was too frightened to face Hillary Clinton how is he ever going to stand up to Osama bin Laden?

Ha! That's pretty good. We need to start using that one.

Posted by: Glenn on June 19, 2007 at 5:49 PM | PERMALINK

Why didn't Rudy's ditching the ISG for the lecture circuit make the news? Because the majority of the TV pundits and other news media headliners are in the same racket. To them, earning a few million in speaking fees isn't unusual, it's enviable. Browse the lineup of this outfit: Washington Speakers Bureau. You might recognize a few faces.

Posted by: Joe Bob on June 19, 2007 at 6:11 PM | PERMALINK

Hee. Rudy's South Carolina chair has been indicted for allegedly selling crack.

Posted by: shortstop on June 19, 2007 at 7:18 PM | PERMALINK

How many big pay slots are there for honest journalists?

Posted by: simoneyes on June 19, 2007 at 8:25 PM | PERMALINK

It is widely thought that avoiding the Iraq Study group will hurt Rudy.
And the fact that Mike Bloomberg, viewed a great mayor, may run as an independent presidential candidate with Chuck Hagel...
Which will pull votes from Rudy and expose and juxtaposition the two mayors' successes...guess who will fare worse

Posted by: consider wisely on June 19, 2007 at 9:44 PM | PERMALINK


For the GOP's conservative base, Guilani's decision not to be on it is probably a plus in his favor.

The GOP conservative base won't vote for Giuliani anyway because he supports abortion, so the point is moot.

Posted by: Andy on June 20, 2007 at 1:51 AM | PERMALINK

Stefan writes:

He has no relevant knowledge of the region, of foreign or national security policy, of history, of military affairs, etc. etc. So what exactly did they expect him to bring to the table???

Right. So why exactly should anyone vote for him for President?

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