Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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July 12, 2007
By: Kevin Drum

THE WILL OF THE PEOPLE....Shorter (and yet also expanded) Matt Yglesias: Both the American public and the Iraqi public want us to leave Iraq. However, both the American government and the Iraqi government want us to stay. So we're staying.

This is called "democracy promotion."

Kevin Drum 1:28 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (137)

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Comments

What the hell do the people know? 50% of them voted for Bush twice.

Posted by: Captain on July 12, 2007 at 1:29 PM | PERMALINK

Once, Captain.

Posted by: Ben V-L on July 12, 2007 at 1:46 PM | PERMALINK

What are you going to believe, your eyes or your own lyin' government?

Posted by: Kenji on July 12, 2007 at 1:55 PM | PERMALINK

well, actually about 3/5ths of the US population is eligible to vote, of which slightly more than 50% voted in Bush's two victories, of which maybe (!) 50% voted for him. So, it's actually a distinct minority of inhabitants of the US who certified their extreme bad judgment and/or stupidity in voting for Bush twice.

That said, the Iraqi government is barely can barely be called such and is likely to disintegrate or be overthrown, and there is always hope that the Republic here can be restored and the Republican evil doers captured and punished.

Posted by: Trypticon on July 12, 2007 at 1:59 PM | PERMALINK

Of course, when it comes to paying the $12 Billion a month for this war - they're all for Democracy. . .

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on July 12, 2007 at 2:10 PM | PERMALINK

The house of cards is tumbling, the bought-and-paid-for MSM will have no choice but to turn on the prez, and all of the shaninagans Rove and Cheney have been pulling will be exposed. They'll impeach themselves...

Posted by: Captain on July 12, 2007 at 2:13 PM | PERMALINK

This war is a bushie republican war that no one else wants. The bushies can have all the blame for it. Now and forever. And we will never let republicans live down their complacency in this stupid war. EVER.

Posted by: razorboy on July 12, 2007 at 2:16 PM | PERMALINK

The Will of the People is an interesting concept that has rarely, if ever, been exhibited as a behavior. Does a people's will exist? How can it be excercised? How can it be excersized in a limited representative democracy? What would distinguish it from the will of a mob? If a people's will exists, is their a corresponding collective guilt for exercising it unjustly or immorally?

Posted by: Brojo on July 12, 2007 at 2:18 PM | PERMALINK

The bushies can have all the blame for it. Now and forever.

I do think that a Federal law, officially naming the war in Iraq, 2003-2008, as "George Bush's War", is appropriate.

Posted by: Wapiti on July 12, 2007 at 2:23 PM | PERMALINK

Brojo: Veeeeery dramatic. Wow! If I had, like you, voted for Ralph Nader, helping elect George Bush and making possible the war in Iraq and a legion of other abuses, I wouldn't want to comment on the subject of this thread either. Hey, how's dad, by the way?

Posted by: Pat on July 12, 2007 at 2:29 PM | PERMALINK

Pat;
I voted for Nader too. And I'm proud to be an American who kept LIEBERMAN out of the White House.

If you think Lieberman wouldn't have gotten us into an Iraq mess, you're hopelessly naive. The Iraq Hawks had their bets hedged.

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on July 12, 2007 at 2:33 PM | PERMALINK

I do think that a Federal law, officially naming the war in Iraq, 2003-2008, as "George Bush's War", is appropriate.

Could we also change the name of the Republican Party (and Connecticut for Lieberman) to the "Bush Incompetence Party"?

Posted by: freelunch on July 12, 2007 at 2:35 PM | PERMALINK

Just because Bush has let his VP run the country doesn't mean that GOre would have let his do so. If Lieberman had tried to incite an invasion of Iraq in 2003, he'd have been off hte ticket in 2004.

Posted by: Emartin on July 12, 2007 at 2:38 PM | PERMALINK

osama_been_forgotten:
I wasnt aware that Lieberman ever ran for the presidency. I believe it was a fellow named Al Gore who was vehemently and vocally opposed to the Iraq war who you screwed out of the White House.

Thanks for that!

Posted by: yep on July 12, 2007 at 2:41 PM | PERMALINK

I think that the celebrations or even intimations of the crumbling of house of cards that is the GOP and the administration are quite premature.

Unless the Democrats have a month long party with Miss Levitra, things are going to stay as they are.

Posted by: gregor on July 12, 2007 at 2:41 PM | PERMALINK

Johnson offed Kennedy to get us in to VietNam.
Bush I TRIED to off Reagan to get us into Afghanistan.
(and we ended up in Nicaragua anyway, right?)
And Cheney just made sure his sock-puppet was compliant.

As I said before;
Don't believe that Gore-Lieberman would have resulted in us not being in Iraq. Don't believe it for one second.

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on July 12, 2007 at 2:47 PM | PERMALINK

Once again, note that when President Bush gets into trouble, suddenly there are all manner of homeland security alerts and problems. And note that apparently the White House in its practiced sky-is-falling routine now has the support of certain loyalists in the security apparatus in certain big cities, at airports, etc. Of course, it is in the interests of these folks to scare people: its their bread and butter at stake. So we get daily reports of "suspicious" packages and "suspicious" individuals that turn out to be innocent and no threat at all.

And, of course, the hapless media play along -- now that Paris Hilton is staying indoors, what else has the tabloid tv folks got to report?

Of course, the media could send reporters and film crews to our Southern Border where a real war is raging. But insofar as I can determine, not a single national media outlet -- print or broadcast -- has anyone reporting from the border. Why? Instead, tabloids like MSNBC seek out and trash the few cities desperate to get a handle on their enormous illegal immigrant problems.

The Bush Administration and the careless media seem to be in another world entirely.

The nation's citizens don't know what is wrong and the nation's leaders don't know what is right.

Posted by: skyisfalling on July 12, 2007 at 3:03 PM | PERMALINK

Since I seem to agree w/gregor I`ll be calling Satan shortly to check on the ice situation down there

"In cyberspace there's always room over the next ridge to build a new perspective of heaven." - Paul Saffo

Posted by: daCascadian on July 12, 2007 at 3:07 PM | PERMALINK

Ah, Kevin.

This is a very disingenious argument. The Iraqi government is acting in the interest of the Iraqi people, but the Sunnis are actively seeking to undermine it and are acting in bad faith, like spoiled children who don't get there way. This is an emergency situation. Sometimes you sacrifice a little democracy up front so you can have a whole lot of democracy later. But the liberals who can't see past there own nose hares only ever see problems.

Why are you against democracy promotion, Kevin. WHY ARE YOU AGAINST DEMOCARCY PROMOTION!

Posted by: egbert on July 12, 2007 at 3:11 PM | PERMALINK

I voted for Nader too. And I'm proud to be an American who kept LIEBERMAN out of the White House.

As crazy as Lieberman is, are you honestly saying that he would have been worse than Dick Cheney????

And by keeping LIEBERMAN out of the White House, you also did your fair bit to keep Al Gore out and let George Bush steal his place.

Not something I'd be proud of, that's for sure.

Posted by: Stefan on July 12, 2007 at 3:16 PM | PERMALINK

Pat;
I voted for Nader too. And I'm proud to be an American who kept LIEBERMAN out of the White House.

If you think Lieberman wouldn't have gotten us into an Iraq mess, you're hopelessly naive. The Iraq Hawks had their bets hedged.

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on July 12, 2007 at 2:33 PM | PERMALINK

Well, you can join Brojo in sharing part of the blame for the last seven years, then. Thanks for stepping up and admitting it. I've always thought one of the best adages in politics is that "you get the government you deserve." The problem, of course, is that I also get the government idiots like you and Brojo deserve.

Posted by: Pat on July 12, 2007 at 3:16 PM | PERMALINK

If you think Lieberman wouldn't have gotten us into an Iraq mess, you're hopelessly naive.

So instead of taking the chance with Gore/Lieberman, you virtually assured our current debacle with Bush by voting for Nader. Smart...unless you were in a "safe" state where your vote didn't matter much.

Posted by: Qwerty on July 12, 2007 at 3:19 PM | PERMALINK

Under cover of the war, the President and his thugs have asserted that they are not compelled to respond to a Congressional subpoena if "the President asserts a privilege"...whatever the heck that means. In any case, the war is being used for cover for, sad to day, a subjugation of our Democracy to the thugs who believe that might makes right...no matter what the cost nor who the victim.

Posted by: parrot on July 12, 2007 at 3:22 PM | PERMALINK

Lieberman would have gotten us into Iraq if Gore was incapacitated. But there is absolutely no way the US would have started a preemptive ground war in Iraq with Gore as president. One can't expiate the guilt of making the mistake of supporting Nadar in 2001 with that fantasy. The fact is, two roads diverged in 2001, and had Gore been president we'd have a Marshall Plan in Central Asia and not be in Iraq. It would have been scarier than any of us knew to have Lieberman in there too, but Lieberman would have absolutely been a traditionally weak and symbolic VP and not in any way crucially calling the shots for the country while Gore had a pulse. The world historical tragedy is that Bush seized power and was the wrong person at the wrong time to be in charge when it really mattered. Gore is serious, careful, and smart, and may have made mistakes too, but not colossal ones setting up the destruction of the country and the world system for fun and profit. Supporting Nadar in 2000 was unfortunately a small but critical link in the chain of causality that has resulted in the dangerous and disastrous situation we find ourselves in today.

Posted by: Trypticon on July 12, 2007 at 3:23 PM | PERMALINK

Well, don't sweat it; as a California resident, my Nader vote didn't actually count for shit. Not by a long shot.

But yes, I do believe that the Senator from AIPAC would have been just as bad as Cheney. Maybe worse. We might already be in Iran by now. And Gore would have had a few weeks as President, at best. I'm sure he would have been touring the Pentagon on the morning of 9/11, instead of safely in an elementary school, in his Brother's state (under a super-secret state of emergency, as was the case, in Florida, on 9/11). Gore would have made a nice martyr for the "hate the terrorists" cause though.

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on July 12, 2007 at 3:23 PM | PERMALINK

I think it's pretty dense to say that Gore-Liarman would have gotten us into Iraq.

As someone already pointed out, Liarman was not president, Gore was and still would be today (if Gore lost in 2004, then Liarman wouldn't have won either - there is no way Liarman replaces Gore in 2004).

Also, we wouldn't have Dumbsfeld and Dickless and the rest of the neo-con cabal pushing for and manipulating the intelligence used to justify the invasion, nor would we have seen the firing and replacement of generals who opposed the invasion or truthfully told what it would cost.

The decision to invade just wasn't the decision of one man, Bush, but the decision of all the little fascists he allowed or embraced into his administration, something that would not have occurred with Gore.

Indeed, Liarman would have been an isolated voice in a Gore administration, while his neo-con buddies in the GOP are the major players in the Bush administration.

Naderites will continue to try to deny their responsibility for this mess by pointing to illogical rationalizations, but they are easily debunked rationalizations and the truth will remain, without support for Nader, Bush would never have been elected in 2000, we would never have invaded Iraq (hell, maybe not even Afghanistan although it was justified), and we certainly would never have been as unsafe as we are today.

Posted by: anonymous on July 12, 2007 at 3:32 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, in California voting for Nadar was not a crime. But you seriously think it is a forgone conclusion that Gore would have been whacked to make way for President Lieberman as part of some kind of Jewish conspiracy to attack Iran and Iraq? As dangerous and crazy as Lieberman has turned out to be he didn't have the Halliburton/Pentagon/Nixonian depth of effective evil Cheney has proven. And he may have been a much less emboldened loon as a winner than the loser he is. And his natural constituency was much broader 8 years ago than the Likudnik freaks he's narrowed himself to now. Now he smells of the same formaldehyde as Pearl, but then there were plenty of pro-Israel Jews and non-Jews who supported him as someone who might have a vested interest in not burying Israel's future in a regional conflagration, and would have lobbied him hard to not mix it up with Iraq or Iran.

Posted by: Trypticon on July 12, 2007 at 3:35 PM | PERMALINK

and the threshold question for Nadar supporters is, was it a throw away vote in a setting where it truly didn't matter, or would you have made the same vote in a setting where it did matter, and did you work to get people to support him in settings where it mattered.

Posted by: Trypticon on July 12, 2007 at 3:37 PM | PERMALINK

It's ludicrous to think that Lieberman would have had anything like the influence on Gore that Cheney has had on Bush. Bush is an extremely weak-minded person being acted upon by an extremely strong-willed one. Gore is nothing like Bush in this respect, and it's ridiculous to think that a reasonable, rational man like him, who vigorously denounced the war long before it was fashionable to do so, would have been swayed by the likes of Lieberman.

It's also not at all clear to me that Lieberman would have been anything like the neocon hawk he is now were he VP to Gore. And he certainly doesn't have it in him to be the neocon Machiavelli that Cheney is.

But I guess those who voted Nader are desperate to justify their terrible political judgment.

Posted by: Steve on July 12, 2007 at 3:39 PM | PERMALINK

Duh Egbert,

You condescending monkey worshiper - why haven't you signed up and gone to Iraq yet? Believe me,
they need you over there more than we need you here.

Posted by: razorboy on July 12, 2007 at 3:42 PM | PERMALINK

This is a very disingenious argument.

Thanks for the warning, egbert, but coming from you we assumed as much.

Posted by: Gregory on July 12, 2007 at 3:43 PM | PERMALINK

Both the American public and the Iraqi public want us to leave Iraq. However, both the American government and the Iraqi government want us to stay. So we're staying. This is called "democracy promotion."

Kudos...this might be the best summary of the Iraq situation I've seen. And only 35 words!

As I said before; Don't believe that Gore-Lieberman would have resulted in us not being in Iraq. Don't believe it for one second.

(a) this is preposterous; (b) you're getting dangerously close to crazy zionist conspiracy theories.

Posted by: rp on July 12, 2007 at 3:45 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin, PLEASE, drop the "Susie for President" ad. I'm on my hands and knees begging you. It can't mean anything to you.

At least install a feature that allows us to opt out of the ad. Don't force this girl's annoying face and denim jacket down our throats!

Posted by: forsythe on July 12, 2007 at 3:46 PM | PERMALINK

Not very important, but since daCascadian above seems to be confused about my bona-fide I will make somethings clear.

I did not vote for Nader.

I have never voted for anyone but a Democrat since 1985 when I became a US citizen.

Neither I, nor any member of my family, will ever vote for a Republican.

Clear?

Posted by: gregor on July 12, 2007 at 3:47 PM | PERMALINK

Don't believe that Gore-Lieberman would have resulted in us not being in Iraq. Don't believe it for one second.

Oh, c'mon, man. That's just silly.

Posted by: Stefan on July 12, 2007 at 3:58 PM | PERMALINK

gregor - crystal.
So you became a citizen while Ron was in the hizzle?
How long were you in therapy, after that?
/snark

Posted by: kenga on July 12, 2007 at 3:59 PM | PERMALINK

Had it been close, in California, yes, I would have had second thoughts. I am an idealist, but I still *do* game my votes. (I'm a registered republican, so I can vote in republican primaries - fat lot of good it did me in 2000, Chimpy had won long before California was asked).

As Gen. Clark confirmed in his recent speech - there was a very strong movement towards Iraq, as far back as 1992, and I believe that Clinton was part of it, Albright was in there too, and maybe Gore, though he's found it politically convenient to distance himself from MANY of the positions he took under Clinton (the pro-corporate stance, don't ask don't tell, passive approach to the environment, etc.) - Liberals go far to try to defend Clinton, but forget what a traitor to the Liberal cause he was.

Anyway - this movement towards Iraq personified itself all over the place, from the character of our military strategy, including our joint exercises, to various political groups. AIPAC, of course, was one group to capitalize on that (for their own purposes) as well as PNAC.

If you were paying attention to politics in 1998, and if you thought we would not eventually invade Iraq - then you were pretty naive. That meme was being pushed all over the newsmedia back then. Maybe if only to test the waters. America was in a two-party trance. Defeated by the Wolf Blitzkreig. Only a few things could have snapped us out of it. Maybe a Nader Presidency. I'm thinking maybe the fallout from the Bush Presidency (and the Democrats' ineffectual response) may also do that - too late, perhaps. Even the 2001 Stock Market crash wasn't enough of a wake-up call.

But one thing is clear; Lieberman is one of THEM. Not one of US. He makes his loyalties more and more clear, every day. (and I'm not talking about a Jewish conspiracy. Grow up. AIPAC is just a useful front for that interest group). I don't know what kind of black, satanic political rituals went on behind the scenes to compel a man like Gore to pick a man like Lieberman. Just as I don't know what compelled Powell to jump into the toilet bowl that was the Bush Cabinet. Blackmail photos? Mind-control drugs? Violent extortion? Who knows?

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on July 12, 2007 at 4:02 PM | PERMALINK

Look, I have no personal animosity towards anyone who voted for Nader.

Everyone is entitled to a few stupid mistakes in their life and, really, who could have known just how very, very, very corrupt and incompetent Bush would be; but let's not pretend that a vote for Nader in 2000 was a monumental mistake with very significant consquences.

The man is and was at least by 2000, a raving, arrogant lunatic.

I don't know what he was like when he was younger, but the man is simply unhinged these days - after 6 years of Bush, he still thinks a Democratic president would be no better.

That's simply bonkers.

The lesser of two evils is still evil, but it is also still the lesser evil and anyone who deliberately picks the greater of two evils is just flat out touched in the noggin.

Not to mention that Nader hardly counts as "no evil" or even a "much lesser evil" such as to offer an alternative to "lesser evil."

No animosity for those who voted for Nader in 2000, but believe me there will be plenty of animosity in 2008 if Nader runs against those who support him and they will richly deserve to be outcast and scorned.

Posted by: anonymous on July 12, 2007 at 4:04 PM | PERMALINK

Okay a couple of typos . . .

" . . . [NOT] a monumental mistake"

". . . runs [AGAIN] . . ."

Damn, freakin, premature senility . . .

Posted by: anonymous on July 12, 2007 at 4:13 PM | PERMALINK
This is called "democracy promotion."

Irony:

Kevin, you clearly have failed to read Bush's signing statement he made when approving the Iraq War resolution.

Bush and his advisers have often sought out both Iraqi and American public opinion when formulating Iraq policy. Unfortunately, the specifics cannot be revealed lest that undermine executive privilege.

Your post is contrary to the spirit of Bush v. Gore, which means that you hate our freedoms.

:end_of_irony

Posted by: Duncan Kinder on July 12, 2007 at 4:14 PM | PERMALINK

But I guess those who voted Nader are desperate to justify their terrible political judgment.
Posted by: Steve on July 12, 2007 at 3:39 PM | PERMALINK

I voted for Nader in 2000, then immediately prayed like a mofo that Gore would win. Pretty stupid. I admit to being far less informed at that time then I am now. But as they say, Bush (not 9/11) changed everything.

For this reason, I think it also a waste of time to harp on those that did vote for Nader in states where the outcome mattered. It's a done deal and the last 7 years HAVE opened the eyes of most of us who did vote Nader. I mean -- hasn't it?

The people to rally now are the ones on the fence who voted for Bush in 2000/2004. If they can't be brought back to some semblance of voting reason, then we'll end up with another fuckwad in the White House.

As disappointed as I am with the current two party system (what choices!), Bush took us one giant leap backward from legitimizing a viable third party. It is time to put out the f**king fires first.

Posted by: E Henry Thripshaw on July 12, 2007 at 4:20 PM | PERMALINK

Hehe, great post Kevin.

Posted by: Gary Sugar on July 12, 2007 at 4:22 PM | PERMALINK

Woah. Pushing a meme is not the same thing as mobilizing the entire US military machine to engage in a sustained land war on the other side of the planet. Yeah, Albright and Clark and others were hawkish on Iraq, but they never even came close to the mobilization required to approximate the fucked up commitment Bush made for real. And none of them would be so stupid as to initiate a war with a secular and contained dictator at the same time we had to comprehensively address a nascent existential threat centered in Afghanistan.

Who's been forgotten again? Oh yeah, it was that guy that Clinton's team was seriously concerned about that Bush's team didn't give a shit about.

Posted by: Trypticon on July 12, 2007 at 4:27 PM | PERMALINK

This is an emergency situation. Sometimes you sacrifice a little democracy up front so you can have a whole lot of democracy later.

I wouldn't be a bit surprised if Hussein, or Musarraf, or Kim Il-Sung, or He Who Cannot Be Named for Fear of Breaking Godwin's Law said exactly the same things to get themselves into office.

Posted by: mmy on July 12, 2007 at 4:29 PM | PERMALINK

CNN: Bush sees good news in Iraq report

My "Onion" Headlines:

Bush sees good news in Hurricane Katrina devastation

Bush sees Loch Ness monster in West Wing

Bush sees Tooth Fairy in Barb's bedroom (advises Tooth Fairy that they are dentures, not baby teeth)

Bush sees dead people (well, this one is true, and apparently he likes it!)

Bush sees flying saucers in Cheney's office (okay, this might be true)

Posted by: anonymous on July 12, 2007 at 4:32 PM | PERMALINK

the Senator from AIPAC would have been just as bad as Cheney

I think that is correct. I recall Gore saying he would expand the powers of the VP's office during the 2000 campaign. A president Gore would also have chosen his national defense care team from the same pool that W. Bush did. The Clinton administration did nothing to dismantle the military so that the next whack president could use it to start wars of aggression, and Gore would have done the same thing. Gore acts like he has balls now, but he did not act that way while a candidate. It is hard to imagine Gore standing up to a VP Lieberman and all of the defense contractors, oil men and militant Israeli supporters that he represents.

Although I am not fond of Democrats because of their pandering and obedience to the defense care industry and Israeli lobby, we still have to hope a Democrat wins the presidency in 2008. Unfortunately, it will not solve any of the deeply rooted problems that having too large of a military and supporting the terrorist state of Israel causes.

Posted by: Brojo on July 12, 2007 at 4:41 PM | PERMALINK

Three protesters disrupted a prayer by a Hindu chaplain Thursday at the opening of a [US]Senate hearing, calling it an abomination and shouting slogans about Jesus Christ.

Yes, America has its own jihadists.

Posted by: anonymous on July 12, 2007 at 4:46 PM | PERMALINK

I have always wanted to disrupt an anti-choice church the way those Chistianists did today in the Senate. Now I know how it is done.

Posted by: Brojo on July 12, 2007 at 4:48 PM | PERMALINK

I don't know.

On a thread where we're criticizing Bush on Democracy Promotion; we're jumping on anyone who doesn't toe the two-party line?

We need to change the direction of this country. Neither the Republicans, nor the Democrats offer a new direction. 8 years of "pragmatic" DLC rule (and the resulting blowback: BUSH) shows that.

I'm not sure that a Nader run would be a bad thing this time, because the dynamics are very different. The 2006 mandate for change was COCK BLOCKED by the spineless Dems in congress. (and yes, I'll eat those words if they actually start talking about impeaching).

Bloomberg is going to run in 08 as an Independent. He will likely split the conservative vote. I'm going to puke if Hillary slips in because of him, because that would be a repeat of 1992. (When Perot stole some fiscal conservatives from Bush). There's an opportunity for a real liberal to win.

The question is: Will the Democratic Machine ALLOW a real liberal to run?

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on July 12, 2007 at 4:49 PM | PERMALINK

disingenious is the best new word I've seen on this blog in some time. The misuse of the personal pronouns and contractions, though, ruined the effect. Decidedly overdone. Don't try so hard, egbert, just let the stupid flow. To paraphrase Chevy Chase, be the stupid.

Posted by: TJM on July 12, 2007 at 4:53 PM | PERMALINK

Brojo, you are an idiot. Still arguing there is no difference between democrats and republicans. I forbid you to talk anymore. Apologize and then shut the fuck up. I'll let you know when you can talk again. But I gotta say, it's not going to be for a long time.

Posted by: Pat on July 12, 2007 at 4:55 PM | PERMALINK

Nader is a loon. Period. Nader won't be president if he runs, even if both the GOP and the Dem candidates and their running mates kick the bucket the day before the election.

Bloomberg is not going to run.

Gore enjoys being a celebrity too much to generate any enthusiasm for the political battlefield.

Hillary is better than anyone in the GOP field.

Who would Obama pick as his VP? Someone even younger and inexperienced? Or maybe he's got his own Cheney in mind?

Polling numbers won't look so good for Hillary and Obama on election day unless the GOP picks an utter goofball (a pretty good possibility with the current field).

Edwards would be the best choice (with Clark, Webb, Obama, or Clinton as VP, in that order), but Dems are poised to again select the least electable individual because they are too much like Naderites and can't bring themselves to pick the lesser of two (or many) evils - they have to pick the evil they wrongly believe is a perfect representation of their political preferences, never seeming to grasp that one's own political preferences are never a perfect fit for reality.

Sigh.

Well, here's hoping the GOP keeps shooting itself in its collective feet and keeps digging its own grave ever deeper.

It appears to be the Dems only hope.

Posted by: anonymous on July 12, 2007 at 5:06 PM | PERMALINK

where do you see a real liberal who might win?

and yeah, the two party system has problems and I'm not a big fan, but I for one wasn't jumping on you as an enforcer of the two party system, but because you were saying stuff I flat out don't agree with (Cheney=Lieberman, Gore would have either stared wars in Iran/Iraq or gotten whacked so that Joe could, etc.).

Yeah, the dems support defense care and all that stuff, and Gore was gelded as VP and a shitty candidate, but I just don't buy that Lieberman could have approached Cheney's masterful destructive power or that Gore would have let him lead the country into real war with Iran or Iraq. No way. I think Gore would have been a better prez than Bill for sure, and not sold out his liberal roots the way Bill did. Bush/Cheney v. Gore/Lieberman not at all comparable in my view.

Posted by: Trypticon on July 12, 2007 at 5:06 PM | PERMALINK

. . . a real liberal . . .

A real myth.

Posted by: anonymous on July 12, 2007 at 5:08 PM | PERMALINK

I was going to ask for better trolls, but this time egbert's faux earnestness is really pretty amusing.

Egbert is right, of course. If it weren't for those nasty Sunnis, we wouldn't be mired in the Iraqi civil war. And if it weren't for the lye, drano would be as tasty as kool-aid.

But the fact that half of the Iraqi government would be dead a month after we kicked them out of the Green Zone might have something to do with their support for us. We should take them off somewhere to be a government-in-exile. I doubt they'd be so keen on us staying if we did that.

Posted by: idlemind on July 12, 2007 at 5:08 PM | PERMALINK

I would vote for Obama, if he's the Dem candidate.

I just do not believe that the Democratic Party machinery will allow that to happen.

Again - if Obama wins, or if the Dems impeach Bush, I'll eat my words. Really, I will.

But I stand by Lieberman==Cheney. Until Lieberman demonstrates otherwise. I'm not talking about some token earmark for a liberal project in his district. He's got to clearly give Bush the finger, and disavow his designs on Iraq and Iran, before I'll believe he's not Cheney's Sith apprentice.

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on July 12, 2007 at 5:15 PM | PERMALINK

Yesterday the MSN reported on Lady Bird's death and the defeat of the Webb amendment. Yesterday the MSN failed to report Lieberman's amendment, codemning Iran's supposed actions against foreign invaders in Iraq, which was passed in a 97-0 vote in a Democratic majority Senate. What's that again about following the people's will?

Posted by: Brojo on July 12, 2007 at 5:29 PM | PERMALINK

Who is worse a 2000 Nader voter or any non-neocon who bought the pitch and supported the Iraq war?

Posted by: Michael7843853 G-O in 08! on July 12, 2007 at 5:35 PM | PERMALINK

Captain at 2:13 PM: The house of cards is tumbling...they'll impeach themselves

Words spoken as the Titanic strikes the iceberg:
"Well, finally, they'll see how incomepent this crew is. Thank God for that."

Posted by: thersites on July 12, 2007 at 5:39 PM | PERMALINK
Who would Obama pick as his VP? Someone even younger and inexperienced?

Bill Clinton, who left office with the highest job approval ratings of any post-WWII President, was a year younger when he took office than Obama would be if he was sworn in in 2009.

Other Presidents that took office younger than Obama would be include JFK and Theodore Roosevelt.

If you want to make an argument about Obama's experience, feel free, but trying to insinuate that Obama is too young to be President is kind of goofy.

Posted by: cmdicely on July 12, 2007 at 5:40 PM | PERMALINK

idlemind: But the fact that half of the Iraqi government would be dead a month after we kicked them out of the Green Zone might have something to do with their support for us.

Which is why we will never leave as long as the condition for leaving is the Iraqi government standing up; the current government itself will sabotage and delay any meaningful progress towards that goal because they know they are doomed the minute the US leave, no matter how ready the Iraqi army and police are. The inadequacy of the Iraqi army and police to take over is their insurance policy against being driven from office (and even killed), because it keeps their protectors (Americans) on Iraqi soil.

Thus, Bush's (and by extension his radical partisan supporters in Congress) policy effectively means the US will be in Iraq forever.

Not another year, or another five years.

Forever.

The radical GOP's plan (and this is Cheney's and Liarman's preferred outcome) is for American soldiers to keep dying until the end of time, just so they can either save face or further the interests of the neo-con cabal.

. . . before I'll believe he's not Cheney's Sith apprentice.

An apprentice is not the master.

Which is why Liarman does not equal and is not equivalent to Cheney.

Liarman does not have Cheney's influence and would have no one to influence in a Democratic administration.

If he could do what you say, then he would control the Democratic caucus.

Clearly he doesn't.

On the Democratic side he is isolated and hated, but tolerated for domestic reasons, but he has no influence. Not an ounce. And he would not have had any more influence in a Gore administration to the extent he exhibited any of the opinions he current foists on the public.

Posted by: anonymous on July 12, 2007 at 5:40 PM | PERMALINK

...a real liberal...

I saw Rep. Dennis Kucinich on C-SPAN last night from a talk at a some steel union meeting in Cleveland from 7/5/7. He took a question about immigration and I thought to myself, uh oh, here we go, but I was wrong. Kucinich gave the most wonderful answer, saying those immigrants earned a lot of money for their employers while working very hard and that he could not ask them to leave. He then framed the issue as an opportunity for organizing and wage controls. I have to say he won my support. A real liberal.

Posted by: Brojo on July 12, 2007 at 5:48 PM | PERMALINK

Who is worse? A 2000 Nader voter or a Gore supporter who didnt bother to vote.

Posted by: Michael7843853 G-O in 08! on July 12, 2007 at 5:49 PM | PERMALINK

depends on the the Nader voter and the non-neocon. some Nadar voters really did make the wrong difference in a critical world historical election. bush would have started the war regardless of the opinions of most Americans one way or another, but it mattered that talking heads like Friedman and politicians like Lieberman supported the war. I'd vote Chris Mathews off the island before osama-been-forgotten, and Michael Moore off the island before John Edwards. of course Moore is a propagandist i like on many issues, but he sure fucked up on Nader in 2000. Kinda doesn't jive smoothly with his Gore support now.

Posted by: Trypticon on July 12, 2007 at 5:51 PM | PERMALINK

anonymous, why did Lieberman's amendment pass unanamously yesterday if he is so "isolated and hated?"

Posted by: Brojo on July 12, 2007 at 5:53 PM | PERMALINK

Who is worse? A 2000 Nader voter or a Democratic congressperson who voted for bankruptcy 'reform' or drug 'benefits'. I suppose their votes are all Nader's fault. I suspect all the problems and betrayals of the Democratic president will be Nader's fault, as well...

Posted by: Michael7843853 G-O in 08! on July 12, 2007 at 5:58 PM | PERMALINK

Kucinich is a real liberal. it would be exciting and a good omen if he had a snowball's chance in hell.

Posted by: Trypticon on July 12, 2007 at 6:04 PM | PERMALINK

I just cannot figure out how Nader convinced all of those Democratic senators to vote unanamously for Lieberman's amendment yesterday. (OK, three abstensions. I wonder who they were.)

Posted by: Brojo on July 12, 2007 at 6:04 PM | PERMALINK

some of you folks are playing games with the Nader thread. Obviously Nader and his supporters aren't responsible for every disaster, but he and some of them played a critical part in a major disaster. I can't imagine anyone is suggesting that this absolves everyone else of all of their responsibilities in the various fiascoes that beset us, or that Nader and some of his supporters are entirely without value.

Lieberman has proven himself to be a craven, dangerous, valueless asshole. He kind of reminds me of Bork, who got all bitter and became more of a freak than he may have been under circumstances less thwarting to his ego.

Posted by: Trypticon on July 12, 2007 at 6:14 PM | PERMALINK

cmdicely: If you want to make an argument about Obama's experience, feel free, but trying to insinuate that Obama is too young to be President is kind of goofy.

There is a difference between young and experienced and young and inexperienced.

There is a difference between tying young to inexperienced and commenting on the combination and simply commenting on youth.

If you can point to command or executive positions held by Obama in his youth that matches the command or executive positions held by the examples you mention, feel free, but implying that I treated youth and experience as separate considerations misstates what I wrote. I did not say he was to young and too inexperience, or imply so, but that implied that he is too young and inexperienced.

In any event, it is irrelevant whether I consider youth to be an impediment (regardless of experience or not), but whether the voting public would, which is the point I was trying to make - it hampers his electability when push comes to shove at the polls, just as Hillary's negatives will.

In the face of any competent Republican candidate, both Obama and Clinton would be behind in the polls, Hillary because of her negatives (perceived or real) and Obama because of his youth and inexperience (perhaps even his race, but I don't perceive that as the bigger factor), as they both were when the first polls started coming out and the GOP candidates had yet to shoot themselves in their feet multiple times.

But we'll all just have to wait and see in 2008 since none of us has a crystal ball.

Posted by: anonymous on July 12, 2007 at 6:21 PM | PERMALINK

Lieberman was a lot better connected in 2000, than he was in 2006.

And given the talk about Bush picking him to replace Rumsfeld - don't think that Lieberman wouldn't have picked a few Bushistas for Gore's cabinet in the name of "bipartisan healing" (though I think Cheney, and definitely Abrams would be right out - I'm sure we'd see Pearl, Wolfowitz, Fliescher, et al).

This bill of Lieberman's may have been just a political tool (and now, 97 Senators swallowed the hook, and are marked). But given that there is no way in hell we can muster the troops to actually stage an invasion of Iran, you know damn well, he means to take the alternative: nuke them before they nuke us.

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on July 12, 2007 at 6:30 PM | PERMALINK

...I just cannot figure out how Nader convinced all of those Democratic senators to vote unanamously for Lieberman's amendment yesterday. ...
Posted by: Brojo on July 12, 2007 at 6:04 PM | PERMALINK

Jedi mind trick.

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on July 12, 2007 at 6:43 PM | PERMALINK

There is a difference between tying young to inexperienced and commenting on the combination and simply commenting on youth. If you can point to command or executive positions held by Obama in his youth that matches the command or executive positions held by the examples you mention, feel free,

It's sad that I have to say this every time Obama is mentioned, but he has *more* legislative experience than HRC or Edwards, and has exactly as much executive experience as they do. And he is the only one running who has had experience as a grassroots activist (when he was a civil rights atty on Chicago's southside).

The "Obama lacks experience" meme is wingnut crap that way too many naive and/or partisan libs have co-opted.

Posted by: Disputo on July 12, 2007 at 6:51 PM | PERMALINK

The "Obama lacks experience" meme is wingnut crap that way too many naive and/or partisan libs have co-opted.
Posted by: Disputo on July 12, 2007 at 6:51 PM | PERMALINK

Well, for any meme, there's really two fears:
1. Is this a legitimate argument? (in this case, NO).
2. Is this a plausible argument that the Mighty Wurlitzer(TM) could use successfully? (in this case, I fear, the answer is yes, when compared with say, Nixon-era veteran Fred Thompson - (catch my drift?) - on the other hand, there's a LOT more anti-Hillary material out there that the MSM can use, so I reckon, Hillary is a far, far, more dangerous choice for the Democrats; which is why they will pick her, and they will lose, even if she's running against Bloomberg(I) and Thompson(R). - and even if they don't attack Hillary with every recycled Clinton scam they can dig up, and with all their illegal wiretaps, and their operative in place in the Arkansas DoJ office, Hillary is going to sell all of our souls to the health insurance industry. I guaranfuckintee you that.

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on July 12, 2007 at 6:59 PM | PERMALINK

On the information available in 2000, Gore was much more likely than GWB to wage war on Iraq.

In 1992, Gore lambasted Bush Senior for letting Iraq off the hook after the first Gulf War, and went to great lengths to argue that Iraq was a major threat to US security. And Gore supported war in the Balkans in the late 90s on the basis of information that was as false as Iraq's WMD (which he also believed in btw).

By contrast, Bush Sr. had shown moderation in stopping the 1992 war after restoring Kwait's independence, and Bush Jr. had expressed a distaste for foreign adventures and nation building.

Of course, hindsight is 20/20. Blaming Nader voters for our current sad state is like blaming your aunt Marge for inviting you to dinner last Saturday -- because you drove into a pole on the way home.

Posted by: JS on July 12, 2007 at 7:17 PM | PERMALINK
There is a difference between young and experienced and young and inexperienced.

There is a difference between "experienced" and "inexperienced", true. There is not a difference between "young" and "young".

Again, if you want to make a case that Obama lacks experience, feel free, but his age is beside the point.

If you can point to command or executive positions held by Obama in his youth that matches the command or executive positions held by the examples you mention, feel free, but implying that I treated youth and experience as separate considerations misstates what I wrote.

I didn't imply that. I stated rather directly, though I do so even more explicitly here, that youth and experience are properly considered separately, and that, while there may be a valid case to be made against Obama on the basis of experience, there is not on youth. I did not say you considered them separately, I said you erred in not separating them.

(Not, though, that I am inclined without some good arguments to put much stock in claims about his lack of experience, either. He's certainly got more total government experience, more federal government experience, and no less executive or command experience than had the President typically rated first in scholarly ratings, who was, like Obama, a successful Illinois lawyer, and only a handful of years older when first elected.)

Posted by: cmdicely on July 12, 2007 at 7:24 PM | PERMALINK

...By contrast, Bush Sr. had shown moderation in stopping the 1992 war after restoring Kwait's independence, . . .
Posted by: JS on July 12, 2007 at 7:17 PM | PERMALINK

That's one perspective.
Interesting to note that the National Dialog at the time was that: well, we'd like to go in and remove Saddam, but there's just no good alternatives, and if we do that, we don't have enough troops to secure the country, and there'd be chaos, and likely an insurgency that could go on for decades, and surely, the Shia would be hungry for payback - and of course, Iran would be compelled to get into the fray on their eastern border. . .

yeah - We had this exercise in 1992. And everyone kind of forgot in 2002, and just pooh-poohed those ideas.

What were the REAL reasons Bush didn't go after Saddam?
Was it the pragmatic reasons? My gut tells me that that was too realistic for him.
Were the Saudi's nervous about their position? (in the oil market; an invasion of Iraq would have created another glut; 1983 all over again! - you have any idea what that did to Houston's economy?) Probably.
Was Bush nervous about the power vacuum making Iran stronger? Probably.
Maybe kicking Iraq out of Kuwait was easy - but maybe Bush was afraid he'd lose against the Iraqi army on their own turf? Even I don't think that's likely (especially after the "highway of death" slaughter).

All signs point to Bush listening to his nervous Houston and Saudi masters in 1992 - who by 2002, had changed their minds.

...and Bush Jr. had expressed a distaste for foreign adventures and nation building....

Well, talk is cheap when you're running for president, and trying to criticize the incumbent. The fact is, when Bush Jr. expressed that distaste, he had absolutely zero record of having any say in anyone's decision for or against nation building. More likely, he was opposed to CLINTON taking credit for successful foreign adventures and nation building. When it looked like Clinton was going to succeed - well, they had to just put a stop to that, didn't they?

Now that the shoe's on the other foot. . . wait, no, Bush isn't on the verge of success. Oh well. Wait and see what hindsight says in 20 years. The damn dirty liberal backstabbers. . .

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on July 12, 2007 at 7:52 PM | PERMALINK

On a thread where we're criticizing Bush on Democracy Promotion; we're jumping on anyone who doesn't toe the two-party line?

Pointing out that a) voting for Nader indisputably helped put Bush in the White House and b) rationalizing a Nader vote by insisting that that Lieberman would just have had the staunchly anti-war Gore whacked is not "jumping on anyone who doesn't toe the two-party line." I'm generally a fan of your posts, OBF, but you're talkin' crazy here, friend.

Posted by: shortstop on July 12, 2007 at 8:01 PM | PERMALINK
On the information available in 2000, Gore was much more likely than GWB to wage war on Iraq.....JS at 7:17 PM
In 2002, Al Gore attacked the Iraq war Bush was launching.

...Gore, speaking Monday at the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco, warned that unilateral action against Saddam Hussein would ''severely damage'' the more urgent war on terrorism and ''weaken our ability to lead the world.'' Gore declared that the president has turned the broad reservoir of good will for America ''into a deep sense of misgiving and even hostility.'' In a pointed dig at President George W. Bush's go-it-alone cowboy rhetoric, he added, ''If you're going after Jesse James, you ought to organize the posse first.''...
You are echoing rightwing spin to mischaracterize Gore's 1992 statement

...The thesis of the Gore speech: Reagan-Bush had looked the other way and let Saddam Hussein become a terroristic [sic] menace and a WMD developer. They had ignored Saddam’s many operational ties to terrorists over the years so they could maintain relations with him and offset the threat from the mullahs in Iran.
That’s a relatively accurate description. Gore’s speech highlighted a wide variety of Saddam Hussein’s terrorist tendencies, and H.W. Bush’s response to each — which was always tolerance. No matter what Iraq did, and how much it promoted terrorism, and how often it would use chemical weapons, Bush 41 preferred to look the other way.
Gore’s point, in the context of the 1992 presidential campaign was clear — if H.W. Bush wants credit for the 1991 Gulf War, he ought to also accept responsibility for helping enable Saddam Hussein for the better part of a decade…
Gore was right in both instances — Bush 41 was wrong to repeatedly cooperate with and reach out to a brutal dictator, and Bush 43 was wrong to launch an unnecessary war under false pretenses and then bungle the conflict every step of the way. The right sees a contradiction here. There isn’t....

Your claims about Al Gore have been debunked many times; but, as usual, rightist spin and bs, are repeated endlessly despite the truth.

George H. W. Bush sacrificed American lives to restore the Kuwaiti monarchy. There are some indications that has been profitable for the Bush family.

Posted by: Mike on July 12, 2007 at 9:17 PM | PERMALINK

Try to find a Nader pronouncement on reproductive choice.

Posted by: pbg on July 12, 2007 at 9:29 PM | PERMALINK

Mike, I know about Gore's 2002 speech. My comment was about what was known in 2000. And which of my claims about Gore have been debunked so many times? Can you be specific, quoting what I said?

Even the neocons did not endorse Bush in 2000 -- McCain was their choice. They did not think Bush would fight a war.

Mike and OBF, if you had been asked in 2000 which of GWB and Gore was more likely to fight a war, would you have picked GWB on the basis of what you knew then? If so, congrats to you. What I remember is that most of the country was making fun of Bush for being a non-entity and a coward. (Which, by the way, may have something to do with his subsequent warmongering).

Finally -- is the point here that one should never vote for a third party? Or that smart people could tell in 2000 that we would get a 9/11 and Bush would invade Iraq?

Posted by: JS on July 12, 2007 at 9:51 PM | PERMALINK

Finally -- is the point here that one should never vote for a third party? Or that smart people could tell in 2000 that we would get a 9/11 and Bush would invade Iraq?

Speaking only for myself, the point is:

--One shouldn't vote for a third party in a tight race when it's bleeding obvious that one of the other two candidates is light-years worse than the other (leaving out 9/11 and Iraq, there was plenty of evidence that Bush would pursue numerous policies that were anathema to progressives), and
--If one is determined to vote third-party in such a case, one should later refrain from making completely unsubstantiated and fairly desperate-sounding claims to justify that vote. The undeserved beating Al Gore is taking in this thread--everything from "He mighta been more hawkish than Bush" to "He couldn't have stopped the assassinating juggernaut that was Lieberman"--is pretty pathetic. Y'all have zero reason to think Gore would have gone into Iraq other than your own desire to vindicate your Nader votes.

I wish just once I could meet a Nader supporter who'd own the consequences of his choice with as much honesty and energy as he could summon to criticize the numerous deficiencies of the Democratic party.

Posted by: shortstop on July 12, 2007 at 10:04 PM | PERMALINK

Shortstop, it should be no surprise that liberals don't all come out of the same cookie cutter.

I wish just once I could meet a Nader supporter who'd own the consequences of his choice

OK let's parse this. Do you mean consequences that could have reasonably been predicted in 2000 -- or actual consequences? It is an important distinction. If I drove into a pole on the way back from my aunt Marge's, does this consequence mean that I was wrong to go visit her?

And I do believe that Clinton's foreign policy team (Albright and Holbrooke) were much more hotheaded that Bush Sr.'s. Albright was too bellicose even for Powell. I didn't trust them.

As for voting for third parties in tight races -- in 2000, that applied only to a couple of states. FWIW (not much) -- mine was not one of those. People voted for Nader for one main reason: to broaden the public agenda and force the media to discuss some issues that neither of the major parties likes discussing.

Posted by: JS on July 12, 2007 at 10:33 PM | PERMALINK

I wish I could meet an anti-Nader voter obsessive who would admit that there were many factors that lead to the Bush 'election' and that Nader was not even the most definitive, just the most facile to latch upon.

Here's a list, in tentative order of significance:

. Illegal, one time only SCOTUS decision
. election fraud
. Bill's sophomoric personal life
. Bill's lying under oath and impeachment
. Bill's Republican economic policies
. Gore's wooden, pussilanimous campaign
. the MSM's failure to emphasize Bush's
lack of qualifications and spurious
military record
. lazy Democrats who failed to vote
. Nader voters

Any one of those factors was enough by itself
to tilt the election. If the Democrats had had
their house in order or the election hadn't
been stolen, the Nader votes wouldn't have been
a factor at all.
I will quit voting or vote for a Nader
everytime before I will concede my vote to the
Democratic party by default.

Posted by: Michael7843853 G-O in 08! on July 12, 2007 at 11:10 PM | PERMALINK

If I drove into a pole on the way back from my aunt Marge's, does this consequence mean that I was wrong to go visit her?

Since you guys were well aware going in that voting for Nader would, except in safely blue or red states, help Bush, let's make this an analogy that actually applies, JS. If you know before leaving home that you have equal odds of getting home safely from Aunt Marge's or running over a small child who jumps in front of your car, is it wrong to go visit her? You're damned straight it is.

I'm not buying some other posters' arguments that they believed in 2000 that Lieberman would usurp the presidency, but I'll spot you your suspicion of Clinton's foreign policy team if foreign policy was the only issue you were voting on. If it wasn't (and you maintain in your final sentence that it was not), I refer you back to point one in my previous post: you had ample evidence that Bush's policies even outside of this area would be poison to progressives.

People voted for Nader for one main reason: to broaden the public agenda and force the media to discuss some issues that neither of the major parties likes discussing.

How'd that work out for you? Are you finding any time to broaden the public agenda, or have we all been too busy trying to end this war, keep our jobs and healthcare, and hold on to a few civil liberties?

Posted by: shortstop on July 12, 2007 at 11:23 PM | PERMALINK

I wish I could meet an anti-Nader voter obsessive who would admit that there were many factors that lead [sic] to the Bush 'election'

You've met one here--except for the "anti-Nader voter obsessive" part, which is an exceptionally telling choice of phrases that supports my observation that you guys are mightily defensive--but you don't seem to be reading what I've actually written.

I asked you to own up to the fact that Nader voters helped put Bush in the White House.

Can you really not even take that much responsibility? And you guys think you're going to change the face of politics with that attitude?

Posted by: shortstop on July 12, 2007 at 11:32 PM | PERMALINK

Foreign policy and specifically warmongering by Albright and Holbrooke (I wish Democrats would recognize that these are dangerous neocons) was what made me not want to vote for Gore.

An expanded agenda is why I voted for Nader rather than staying home.

I was prepared to see Bush be elected over Gore, but I did not anticipate that Bush would fall for the neocons. At worst, I thought he would be like his father. I didn't think that was a major risk.

Posted by: JS on July 13, 2007 at 12:02 AM | PERMALINK

Incidentally, Gore gave another notable speech in 2002 -- a few days after the SOTU where Bush introduced "The Axis of Evil" and Iraq as an enemy.

In that speech in February 2002, Gore was very supportive of Bush and his overall approach. He endorsed the SOTU, and made specific reference to the possibility of war on Iraq. Rather than argue against it, he took great pains to point that he had broken party lines to vote for the first Iraq war -- and thought a second one should finish off Saddam. Speaking specifically about Iraq, he said:

So this time, if we resort to force, we must absolutely get it right. It must be an action set up carefully and on the basis of the most realistic concepts. Failure cannot be an option, which means that we must be prepared to go the limit.

So Gore has been all over the place when it comes to support for war. Taking what he said in that speech, and imagining a team of Albright / Holbrooke / Liberman around him, it is not a stretch to think that he would have gone into Iraq himself.

Posted by: JS on July 13, 2007 at 12:50 AM | PERMALINK

I voted for Nader in 1996. I haven’t been able to vote since because I moved to the Virgin Islands in 1997. I voted for Nader in ’96 because I was fed up with Clinton’s Republican Lite agenda. NAFTA was the “hare” (as Egbert would put it.)

I probably would have held my nose and voted for Gore in 2000 because I saw the F word all over Bush and Cheney (unless I was in a solidly blue state). Just his trail of executed corpses in Texas and how he mocked the condemned was sufficient. Plus chickenhawks make me puke – I am an age peer of these two dickheads. And he sold Sammy Sosa to Chicago. Did the USA have a chance?

Even the late and sorely missed Molly Ivans did not realize how evil Bush would be as POTUS. I specifically remember reading an article by her during the campaign titled “Shrub,” which stated emphatically that he was not “a crazy.”

However, calling Nader a loon is bullshit. Along with Noam Chomsky, he is the smartest and most incisive analyst of American politics. (You can throw in Chalmers Johnson).

It gets tiresome having to hold your nose to vote for a Democratic nominee. Let’s see – should I order Fascist or Fascist Lite tonight? Which goes better with a Merlot? Sometimes you just have to vote for someone who believes in the same things you do.

So please, Señor Anonymous, please lay out SPECIFICALLY Nader’s insane POSITIONS.

Posted by: El Pollo on July 13, 2007 at 12:59 AM | PERMALINK

JS: I was prepared to see Bush be elected over Gore, but I did not anticipate that Bush would fall for the neocons. At worst, I thought he would be like his father. I didn't think that was a major risk.

So you thought he'd be like his father, i.e. a Republican in hock to the evangelical base who'd appoint anti-choice judges, not care much for civil liberties, and pursue a pro-wealthy, anti-union and anti-middle class economic policy? And you didn't think this was a major risk?

So it turns out you were an idiot. At least you admit it.

Posted by: Stefan on July 13, 2007 at 1:32 AM | PERMALINK

I was prepared to see Bush be elected over Gore, but I did not anticipate that Bush would fall for the neocons. At worst, I thought he would be like his father. I didn't think that was a major risk.

OK, you thought this. Now, was what you thought right or wrong? If it was wrong, how much weight should we give to the rest of your opinions?

So Gore has been all over the place when it comes to support for war. Taking what he said in that speech, and imagining a team of Albright / Holbrooke / Liberman around him, it is not a stretch to think that he would have gone into Iraq himself.

Again, your defense of your vote seems to be claiming that you're an incredibly poor predictor and that you have a deeply confused and shallow understanding of the relative positions held by the candidates. I don't see exactly why you think this is an argument in your favor....especially when on the one hand we have your deluded fantasies about what might have happened, and on the other the cold indisputable fact of what exactly did happen.

Posted by: Stefan on July 13, 2007 at 1:39 AM | PERMALINK

It will probably give you a headache Stefan, but try to focus on the fact that your position is equally based on assumptions about what would have happened if Gore had won. Of course your assumptions are correct whereas those you disagree with are deluded phantasies. Can't argue with that, so you win.

Posted by: JS on July 13, 2007 at 2:44 AM | PERMALINK

THE WILL OF THE PEOPLE

Hey but David Broder goes out into the heartland occassionally to interpret for us what the American people truly feel. What more is needed? And anyway, as Broder has poointed out, there are dangers to a surfeit of democracy; heck, some very good people, even some fellow cocktail guests, might lose their perogatives.

Re. the whole Nader thing. I've always liked the idea of an 'endorsed vote' where a vote for one party could be automatically passed on to another and just be part of the overall tabulatio. For instance, you could vote for the 'Green' party knowing that all the Green votes would be endorsed to the Democratic candidate. You don't lose anything re. the total Democratic votes but you could have a pol going 'Holy shit, 20% of my vote came from Greens; guess I'd better pay a bit more attention.' And the Republican candidate could see clearly that 85% of his votes came from the Xianist Raving Loon Party.

Posted by: snicker-snack on July 13, 2007 at 5:38 AM | PERMALINK

I heart Shortstop.

Posted by: Pat on July 13, 2007 at 8:29 AM | PERMALINK

JS: It will probably give you a headache Stefan, but try to focus on the fact that your position is equally based on assumptions about what would have happened if Gore had won.

Hardly. You're still ignoring every single issue outside of foreign policy. Once again, even if we spot you that--and I'm only doing it because I had a fair amount of concern about Albright myself, not because you have begun to prove your case re Gore et guerre--you have failed to address a single domestic policy issue.

Is it your contention that Gore might have pursued the same toxic domestic agenda that Bush has, despite reams of evidence to the contrary? If so, please explain your reasons for holding this view.

Posted by: shortstop on July 13, 2007 at 9:19 AM | PERMALINK

It will probably give you a headache Stefan, but try to focus on the fact that your position is equally based on assumptions about what would have happened if Gore had won. Of course your assumptions are correct whereas those you disagree with are deluded phantasies. Can't argue with that, so you win.

Yes, I do win, because you're indulging in the same self-justification as the Iraq War cheerleaders do when they claim that though they were wrong, it was for the right reasons, while those of us who opposed the war may have been right, but for the wrong reasons.

And in any case, yes, both my and your positions are based on certain assumptions. That applies to most every opinion people hold, and therefore so trivially true as to be meaningless. The deeper question, then, is what was the basis for those assumptions, and did those assumptions turn out to be correct or not?

Whereas I grounded my assumptions in certain observable base facts -- Gore was a Democrat and would have governed as a Democrat, and his positions were a known quantity after 20 plus years of public service, while Bush was a Southern Republican, of the party of Newt Gingrich and Jesse Helms and Phil Gramm and Tom DeLay and would govern as a Southern Republican -- your assumptions seem to be based merely on wishful thinking.

Posted by: Stefan on July 13, 2007 at 9:44 AM | PERMALINK

I was prepared to see Bush be elected over Gore, but I did not anticipate that Bush would fall for the neocons. At worst, I thought he would be like his father. I didn't think that was a major risk.

And again I'll ask, were you right or were you wrong?

You seem to want the excuse that merely because you had a "reason" for doing something, no matter how foolish or ill-informed or stupid that reason was, that what you did was valid.

Posted by: Stefan on July 13, 2007 at 9:48 AM | PERMALINK

OK, you thought this. Now, was what you thought right or wrong? If it was wrong, how much weight should we give to the rest of your opinions? Stephan

Obviously this statement was garbled in transmission. You surely didnt mean to say that. Quite the coalition builder, aren't you? Better stick to licking envelopes in 08.

Posted by: Michael7843853 G-O in 08! on July 13, 2007 at 9:57 AM | PERMALINK

Given the US system, in 2000, 2004 the only call was to vote for the Dems in the tighter races, but given how far down the list voters for Nader are among the reasons for Bush's coming to power - Gore did win after all! - I am always surprised by the level of vitriol shown towards them. I can think of so many better targets of anger. Especially when in the long run the U.S. would be so much better served by a significant third party presence. I mean, see Krugman today. And yeah, you guys have to live with the results of the election. So do us non-Anericans.

Posted by: snicker-snack on July 13, 2007 at 9:58 AM | PERMALINK

Does anyone else think it's funny that Michael has nothing but hostility for people who voted Gore over Nader in 2000, but is now shilling for Gore in his handle?

Posted by: anonymous on July 13, 2007 at 10:08 AM | PERMALINK

Michael has nothing but hostility for people who voted Gore over Nader in 2000, but is now shilling for Gore in his handle?

Show where I expressed hostility to Gore voters. You can't. The hostility is displayed by Nader voter haters blaming us for everyhing since 00. Your assertion is a classic right wing radio ploy.

This is not 00, so my STRONG support for the new, unchained Gore is hardly funny. Why aren't you still pushing for Kerry?

Posted by: Michael7843853 G-O in 08! on July 13, 2007 at 11:16 AM | PERMALINK

I remember when Sec. Albright went to Antioch College to stump for more war against Iraq and was shouted down by the wonderful students there. I bet many of those students voted for Nader in 2000. I bet most held their noses and voted for Kerry in 2004, like I did.

Nader usually publishes an article over at Counterpunch every couple of weeks. They are not insane rants. Those who call Nader a loon must not read his articles, which are usually pretty good.

I voted for another third party candidate in 2000, but I understood the desire of the Greens and Naderites to create a more responsive progressive political party than what the Democratic Party offers. I don't like Nader's public persona either, so I had difficulty voting for someone I knew too well, which also prevented me for voting for Gore. No one figured on a war or a 9/11 in 2000. The worst fear was another building being bombed from below or a subway poison attack. Many people thought, and still think, there is not that much difference between Dems and Repubs, especially when it comes to the military budget, military aid to Israel, and belligerence to Iran. Sometimes ecomomics and domestic issues have a higher influence on choosing whom to vote for and sometimes foreign policy is more important. In 2000 the domestic situation did not seem too bad, but the entrenched militarism had not been dealt with in the eight years of the Clinton adminsistration, and Gore represented more of the same.

Posted by: Brojo on July 13, 2007 at 11:28 AM | PERMALINK

The hostility is displayed by Nader voter haters blaming us for everyhing since 00.

Really? Because I pointed out above that what I'm asking you to do is simply acknowledge that your vote helped put Bush in the White House, and you weren't honest enough to be able to do that.

You still aren't. You just keep railing about how anyone who makes this observation is an "obsessive" who "blam[es] us for everything since 00." Very melodramatic, but neither reasonable nor remotely responsible.

Posted by: shortstop on July 13, 2007 at 11:39 AM | PERMALINK

Shortstop,
sure I did. look at my list of causes, all of which I stated, could by themselves be responsible for turning the election. Nader voters were on the list.

Posted by: Michael7843853 G-O in 08! on July 13, 2007 at 12:02 PM | PERMALINK

Many people thought, and still think, there is not that much difference between Dems and Repubs, especially when it comes to the military budget, military aid to Israel, and belligerence to Iran.

Many people also believe in angels, and that man descended from Adam and Eve, and that Iraq was involved in 9/11. Many people are stupid and don't know what they're talking about.

Posted by: Stefan on July 13, 2007 at 12:07 PM | PERMALINK

Tell it to the Lebanese.

Posted by: Brojo on July 13, 2007 at 12:51 PM | PERMALINK

A vote is secret.

It is not a statement and cannot be used as a statement.

It's only purpose is to choose who will lead.

Nader ran, even though he had no hope whatsoever of being president - I think he wasn't even on the ballot in enough states to actually get the necessary electoral votes to win, but maybe that was in 2004.

In any event, a vote for Nader was a vote for whoever actually won the election, not a statement of principle.

In this case, it was a vote for the greater evil, no matter by how little amount you think.

Nader is a loon.

Only a loon would condemn the country to the greater of two evils for the sake of a campaign that couldn't win or change anything.

Did Nader's "statement" that he could crap all over the Democratic chances to win the White House achieve any additional power for him?

No.

Did he pick up more supporters because of his "statement" campaign?

No.

Naderites (or any other third party candidate supporters) can pat themselves on the back all day long for "voting their conscience" but I'm not impressed by people whose conscience dictates allowing the greater evil to win just so they can pat themselves on the back about how smart and ideologically pure they are, at least when they don't have the common courtesy to even recognize this and apologize for it, much less when they rationalize it by bizzare speculation that Liarman would have had control over presidential appointments and that Gore was gung ho to invade Iraq (military action includes, but is not limited to invasion only).

But if 6 years of Bush hasn't convinced you of the tradegy of your vote, then I'd say you are as loony as Nader and deserve to be outcast if you repeat the errors of 2000.

Indeed, I am as fearful of the ideological purity demanded by Naderites as I am of the demands for ideological purity from the Bush administration.

If you have to toss away any Democrat that doesn't toe your narrow ideological beliefs, then you are no better than those in the Bush administration throwing out loyal Republicans for being similarly ideologically impure and suffer from the same arrogance.

And if you truly believe that neither Clinton nor Gore were better leaders than Bush, you are expressing the same type of rabid ideological purity and arrogance that now rules this country's executive branch.

Posted by: anonymous on July 13, 2007 at 12:54 PM | PERMALINK

Tell it to the Lebanese.

Posted by: Brojo on July 13, 2007 at 1:03 PM | PERMALINK

Look, I rarely think or talk about Nader in 2000. I think he's obsessive and weird but his tireless advocacy and thinking over the years outweighs his 2000 fuck up, even though that was colossal, in my view. Saying that Bush and Gore were peas in a pod as he did (and Michael Moore, not G-O 08, did) was then and has been proven to be monumentally absurd. Nader does have blood on his hands for not aggressively backing out of races, like in Florida, where the fate of the world could be reasonably understood to be in the balance. So do that subset of supporters of his, like Moore, who gambled that possibly making Gore loose the election would teach those pesky dems a lesson.

It's good that some Nader 2000 supporters admit the point, as a matter of intellectual and historical honesty. Given the hypersensitivity and fuck you attitude of some of that crowd that has remarkably persisted, I think most anti-Nader sentiment is mainstream and justified and not disproportionate or obsessive. It's just kind of an expected reality check of progressives on fellow progressives. Like, "do you get it?" Yeah, third party dreams are great, and I've personally busted my hump for that, but for goodness sake, know where to focus those efforts, and don't put anything before keeping Republicans out of office, because really, they are corrupt, evil, hypocritical, class warfare, bloodmongers and fundamentalist freaks hell bent on destroying America and life on earth essentially, pretty much across the board these days. I remember when there were Republican's I would have supported over any one else in the field, but those days are completely gone, and I am so fed up with them, dispossession, the Hague, or Guantanamo are too damn good for them.

Prime Directive people: stop republicans first. One of the maddening things about Dems in congress these days as they don't seem to get this either. People are starved for some real push back. Pull the troops from Iraq and investigate these traitorous 5th column administration flunkies until they run out of appeals, pardons, money, and freedom. This twitchy defensive justification of Leiberman-woulda-been-Cheney/Gore=War reactivity on the part of Nader2000ites makes normal people wonder if you guys get the prime directive. That doesn't make us freaks.

Posted by: Trypticon on July 13, 2007 at 1:09 PM | PERMALINK

shortstop, as I already mentioned, my vote did not help anybody get elected, as I live in one of the most blue states in the union -- so for me it was a very easy decision. And as I think I also said, foreign policy (specifically warmaking) is indeed my main concern. I was angry at Clinton for bombing Serbia on the basis of misinformation at least as distorted as the WMD charade in iraq -- such as hundreds of thousands of victims in Kosovo. (I don't think Clinton himself was a warmonger, but I think his foreign policy team was run by neocons, something the Democrats have never accepted or tried to deal with). I will repeat, in 2000 it appeared more probable that Gore, rather than Bush, would have a neocon foreign policy team and fight unjust wars.

Why don't you address what Gore said in 1992 (where he advocated doing what Bush Jr. did in Iraq, while Bush Sr. was the cool-headed one one) or in 2002, when he recommended a new Iraq War that would "go the limit" before GWB had actually explicitly called for such a war? Yes, Gore has changed a lot now and I would vote for him with his current agenda. I also give him credit for his early support for Dean. But before 2003 he was a different person. Also, I assume that, like most Democrats, you continue to believe that the Clinton bombing in the Balkans was justifed -- but I do not.

As for domestic policy, many made the calculation (Michael Moore, for example) that giving a voice to someone like Nader might make more of a difference than there was between Gore and Bush. (Several of the liberal members of the Supreme Court were appointed by Republicans).

Stefan, it is not possible to carry on a conversation with someone who can only talk with ad hominems. You say that Bush and Gore were known quantities in 2000, but you do not address the fact that Gore sounded much more bellicose than Bush, already had a neocon team, had participated in a war (in the Balkans) that was less justified than Bush Sr.'s Iraq War -- and had less UN authorization than either Iraq War, btw -- while Bush Jr. was assumed by many to be a copy of his father. I would rather have Scowcroft and Baker than Albright and Holbrooke -- any day.

Posted by: JS on July 13, 2007 at 1:40 PM | PERMALINK

Cindy Sheehan may run against Nancy Pelosi because of the lack of Democratic Congressional confrontation to W. Bush's Iraq Occupation policies. Who would you vote for?

If you said Pelosi, will you admit you were wrong by 2016 if US troops are still in Iraq, Lebanon is still being bombed by Israel and Palestinians are still suffering totalitarian terror? I think not. We all have our reasons for voting the way we do, and we should consider others' reasons as legitimate as our own.

Saying a vote for Nader puts Iraqi blood on my hands any more than a vote for Gore puts Palestinian and Lebanese blood on yours is a just a pissing match. A pissing match where the golden showers fall on lots and lots of dead bodies we all have collective guilt for, regardless of who we voted for.

Posted by: Brojo on July 13, 2007 at 2:04 PM | PERMALINK

Trypticon: Outstanding post, top to bottom.

JS, I am afraid that, far from engaging only in ad hominems, Stefan has been too kind to you. Statements like the following do show an appallingly confused and shallow understanding of issues, various candidates' political histories and philosophies, and how those histories and philosophies are likely to play out in office:

As for domestic policy, many made the calculation (Michael Moore, for example) that giving a voice to someone like Nader might make more of a difference than there was between Gore and Bush. (Several of the liberal members of the Supreme Court were appointed by Republicans).

Difference between what? What issues are you referring to? Do you even know?

Okay, we get it--because David Souter turned out not to be what Poppy ostensibly expected, you voted on the one issue that interested you, the Clinton team's excessive hawkishness. But your imperfect--purposefully insufficient is less polite but probably more accurate--understanding of the scope of presidential power and its domestic and international repercussions does not inspire us to respect that choice.

Indeed, you don't seem to grasp that the more you explain the limits of your deliberations, the less defensible your vote becomes on your self-stated grounds of "broadening the agenda." Did you believe that military action was the only agenda item that should be under discussion?

And Brojo, give me a break. My anti-Lieberman credentials are probably second to no one's here, and I'm not going to argue that his every wrongheaded action doesn't seriously undermine Middle East stability. But while you're pointing out the plight of Lebanese and Palestinians, you might give a thought to how the people actually in the White House since 2001 have had an effect on events in the Middle East. For cryin' out loud, you aren't even mentioning the names of Bush, Cheney, Wolfowitz, Cheney, Rice, Rumsfeld et. al in these posts of yours. Was the 2000 election between Gore and Nader, or did you notice there was a third candidate in there?

Posted by: shortstop on July 13, 2007 at 2:23 PM | PERMALINK

Stefan, it is not possible to carry on a conversation with someone who can only talk with ad hominems.

I think you need to learn what ad hominem means.

Posted by: Stefan on July 13, 2007 at 2:28 PM | PERMALINK

I will repeat, in 2000 it appeared more probable that Gore, rather than Bush, would have a neocon foreign policy team and fight unjust wars.

No, it didn't appear more probable to knowledgeable observers, it merely appeared that way to you. Stop hiding behind the passive voice. Now, again, the question: were you right or were you wrong?

Posted by: Stefan on July 13, 2007 at 2:33 PM | PERMALINK

"A vocal proponent of the idea that the war on terror is actually World War IV, James Woolsey, former director of the Central Intelligence Agency under President Bill Clinton, wears may hats. He is an active member of several hardline and neoconservative advocacy organizations, has served in a number of high-profile government posts, has advised a long line of military contractors, and is an influential presence in the U.S. media.

"Appointed to the Pentagon's Defense Policy Board after Donald Rumsfeld became defense secretary, Woolsey is vice president of Booz Allen Hamilton, a high-powered consulting firm and military contractor based in Virginia. He also serves as the honorary co-chair, along with Sen. Jon Kyl, of the hardline Center for Security Policy; is a member of the recently revived Cold War-era anticommunist group the Committee on the Present Danger; is a distinguished adviser for the neoconservative-led Foundation for the Defense of Democracies; serves on the advisory board of the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs, described by one observer as "a think tank that puts Israel and its security at the heart of U.S. foreign policy" (Sunday Herald, April 13, 2003); and supported the advocacy work of two letterhead groups that played influential roles generating support for invading Iraq and fighting an expansive war on terror in the wake of 9/11, the Project for the New American Century (PNAC) and the Committee for the Liberation of Iraq.

"Woolsey's multiple connections in both government and the private sector have often been criticized by observers and watchdog groups. In a March 2003 report about the potential conflicts of interest of several members of the Defense Policy Board, the Center for Public Integrity highlighted Woolsey as a case in point: "Former CIA Director James Woolsey is a principal in the Paladin Capital Group, a venture-capital firm that, like [Richard] Perle's Trireme Partners, is soliciting investment for homeland security firms. Woolsey joined consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton as vice president in July 2002. The company had contracts worth more than $680 million in 2002. Woolsey told the Wall Street Journal that he does no lobbying and that none of the companies he has ties to have been discussed during a Defense Policy Board meeting."

"Woolsey's government service dates back to the early 1970s, when he served as an adviser to the U.S. Delegation to the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks. He also helped lead talks on a number of other arms control negotiations, including the U.S.-Soviet Strategic Arms Reduction Talks and the Nuclear and Space Arms Talks (see Center for Strategic and International Studies, Biography of R. James Woolsey).

"In the early 1980s, Woolsey became acquainted with a number of high-powered figures, including Dick Cheney and Rumsfeld, with whom he would later team up on numerous occasions over the next three decades to support controversial defense and security polices. Although a conservative Democrat, Woolsey served—with Cheney and Rumsfeld—as a team leader for secretive doomsday scenario exercises organized by the Reagan administration as part of a continuity of government program aimed at ensuring the survival of the U.S. government in the event of a nuclear war (Rise of the Vulcans, pp. 140, 335)."

Posted by: Brojo on July 13, 2007 at 2:33 PM | PERMALINK

As for domestic policy, many made the calculation (Michael Moore, for example) that giving a voice to someone like Nader might make more of a difference than there was between Gore and Bush.

How'd that calculation work out for you? Was the calculation correct or, based on Bush's domestic record in terms of healthcare, women's rights, civil liberties, gay marriage, economic policy, tax breaks for the wealthy, etc. etc., did it turn out to be in error?

Posted by: Stefan on July 13, 2007 at 2:39 PM | PERMALINK

How'd that calculation work out for you? Was the calculation correct or, based on Bush's domestic record in terms of healthcare, women's rights, civil liberties, gay marriage, economic policy, tax breaks for the wealthy, etc. etc., did it turn out to be in error?

...the environment, education, privacy, consumer protection, job security, federally funded scientific research, response to Katrina...

Oh, well! Sometimes you gotta let a few minor things go to make a Great Voter Statement!

Posted by: shortstop on July 13, 2007 at 2:55 PM | PERMALINK

Clinton signed some Draconian drug laws, helping to increase incarceration rates. The prison rolls of regular incarcerated Americans is about the same now as under Clinton. Clinton also lowered taxes for the wealthy, but not to the extent W. Bush has. There are a lot more immigrants incarcerated now, but it is hard to imagine, after 9/11, that would have been any different under Gore.

I wonder how all of those people Clinton kicked off of welfare are doing. They have been forgotten in the lesser of two evils debate.

W. Bush is the worst ever during my lifetime, no question. Those who could not understand that in 2000 know it now, but back then Democrats were, and still are, a lot closer to Republicans than to me.

Posted by: Brojo on July 13, 2007 at 3:13 PM | PERMALINK

I admit that I have erred and endagered the welfare of the nation. I am an unworthy person. In the next election, I will read carefully the Party Prime Directive and obey its dictates. I am now ready for the re-education camp.

Posted by: JS on July 13, 2007 at 3:22 PM | PERMALINK

I admit that I have erred and endagered the welfare of the nation. I am an unworthy person. In the next election, I will read carefully the Party Prime Directive and obey its dictates. I am now ready for the re-education camp.

Oh, flounce off the camp, then, you drama queen. Stop trying to pretend that asking you to accept some responsibility and account for your mistake is equivalent to repressing your precious selfhood.

What bothers me is that you keep justifying your mistake with statements like (again in the passive voice) "many made the calculation (Michael Moore, for example) that giving a voice to someone like Nader might make more of a difference than there was between Gore and Bush" without then admitting that that calculation was wrong. It was in error. It was based on faulty data and faulty logic. Who cares that you "made the calculation"? Hey, I made the calculation that 2+2=5. Does that mean I'm not a fucking moron? After all, I made the calculation, didn't I?

Posted by: Stefan on July 13, 2007 at 3:37 PM | PERMALINK

In the next election, I will read carefully the Party Prime Directive and obey its dictates. I am now ready for the re-education camp.

Man, you really do not get it. Halting Republican damage, as Trypticon described it, is not the party's directive; it's that of all progressives who care about something besides their own egos. Duh.

Stop acting like a petulant child. You're as one-dimensional as a Bushite who votes only on same-sex marriage or abortion, and you're about as well informed. In fact, you sound like nothing so much as a Ron Paul supporter--caught and held by a shiny object, unable to see past it.

Posted by: shortstop on July 13, 2007 at 3:39 PM | PERMALINK

Stefan, look up "passive voice". Shortstop, look up "one-dimesional".

Posted by: JS on July 13, 2007 at 4:04 PM | PERMALINK

I was willing to vote Democratic in 2004 to halt Republican damage and will do so again in 2008. I was unwilling to do so in 2000 and will be unwilling to do so in 2012. Sooner or later I prefer to vote for something more substantive and closer to my core beliefs than just the least opposition to them.

Posted by: Brojo on July 13, 2007 at 4:45 PM | PERMALINK

The reason I cannot always vote Democratic for "Halting Republican damage" is because that would be "like nothing so much as a Ron Paul supporter--caught and held by a shiny object, unable to see past it."

Posted by: Brojo on July 13, 2007 at 5:08 PM | PERMALINK

"anonymous, why did Lieberman's amendment pass unanamously yesterday if he is so "isolated and hated?""

You are kidding, right?

Who exactly is going to vote against a RESOLUTION (an ineffective piece of nothing) condemning a country who pretty much everyone agrees is, even if only some small way, aiding and abetting, even if justified from their viewpoint, those who are killing our soldiers?

Do you mean to say that if Liarman proposed a resolution condemning Saddam Hussein for being a murderous dictator (something I hope everyone would agree on, just as I would hope everyone would agree that Republicans shamelessly aided and abetted his murderous ass), Democrats should vote against it just cause the hate Liarman?

This is exactly what I mean about ideological purity and it is exactly why Naderites scare me to death, every bit as much as the American Christian and Jewish Winger Ayatollahs and the people in the Bush administration that put ideological purity above everything, competence, effectiveness, efficiency, honor, integrity, and so on.

This is also why Nader is a loon.

He's a loon in the same sense as an arrogant, self-righteous, ideological purist, who thinks he has all the answers, is unwilling to compromise in any way, and will destroy anyone who doesn't toe his ideological line, just as the Bushistas destroy even Republicans who don't toe their ideological line and just as the radical Islamists kill anyone who associates with a Jew, doesn't wear the veil, etc., etc., etc.

Politics is real world and if you want change you have to work within the system, choosing the best available or least distasteful party - at least in a democracy; Nader didn't want to do that because it didn't fit in with his ego that said, you not only have to do everything I say, but you have to make me the official decider of party orthodoxy.

You are political jihadists.

Like the Palestinian radicals, you'd rather see the continued degradation and destruction of your own people than to give up your quest for ideological purity and control and enter into compromise, because you are certain that your God Ralph Nader is the one true God, without fault or flaw and always right.

If that isn't crazy (loony) then I am truly uncertain what is.

Over 3500 American troops are dead, dead, dead because of people who voted for ideological purity.

The pretense that Gore would have done the same just paints you as delusional and pretty much seals the ideological purity deal.

Go ahead and have your little self-congratulatory, pat-yourself-on-the-back, loser Green Party, Pink Party, or Purple Party, and you can continue to do so when when homophobic, anti-female, pro-industrial, anti-worker, foreign-policy-disaster legislation and policies spring forth from Republican hands again and again.

Gee, you people must be morons to believe the policies and laws the Democrats are trying to reverse (thwarted only by filibusters and vetoes) makes them the same as the Republicans.

Have you even been paying attention for the last 10 years?

You. Are. Just. Delusional.

Put your robes back on and trot on down to the Church of Nader so you can worship your hero.

At least those of us in the real world are not filled with delusions that those we find we must support to get anything done are perfect.

You would rather support the self-declared perfect candidate and get absolutely nothing done.

Wow. That's a winning hand.

Tell me exactly what Nader policies have been adopted these past 6 years, prior to January 2007, as the result of your votes for him?

You mean to say that nothing the Democratic Congress has done or tried to do is something you support? NOTHING!? Are you really serious?

Posted by: anonymous on July 13, 2007 at 6:09 PM | PERMALINK

"I admit that I have erred and endagered the welfare of the nation. I am an unworthy person. In the next election, I will read carefully the Party Prime Directive and obey its dictates. I am now ready for the re-education camp."

The only ones I see with a party prime directive are the Naderites who insist on ideological purity before they will support a candidate.

You are the pot calling the kettle black, my Gore-is-Bush-is-Clinton friend.

Posted by: anonymous on July 13, 2007 at 6:11 PM | PERMALINK
.... quoting what I said?....JS at 9:51 PM
To quote you, "On the information available in 2000, Gore was much more likely than GWB to wage war on Iraq" JS on July 12, 2007 at 7:17 PM You claimed that Gore was a neo-con and would have invaded Iraq. Gore was cognizant that Iraq had nothing to do with 9-11 and would not have invaded. Gore is not a warmonger. Based on what was know in 2000, there is not indication that Gore would have launched an illegal war on Iraq. You can weasel, but your interpretations are predicated on selective editing and misguided characterizations.
....it is not a stretch to think that he would have gone into Iraq himself. JS at 12:50 AM
Once again, you are quoting selectively. Al Gore was speaking of the necessity of getting the war in Afghanistan right. This was a warning on Gore's part, not encouragement. Speaking of Iraq, Gore said "So this time, if we resort to force, we must absolutely get it right. It must be an action set up carefully and on the basis of the most realistic concepts. Failure cannot be an option, which means that we must be prepared to go the limit. And wishful thinking based on best-case scenarios or excessively literal transfers of recent experience to different conditions would be a recipe for disaster."

That was a warning to Bush. It was in no way an indication that, a few months after 9-11, he would have used the events of 9-11 to lie to Americans to justify an attack on Iraq.

Posted by: Mike on July 13, 2007 at 8:06 PM | PERMALINK
....you continue to believe that the Clinton bombing in the Balkans was justifed -- but I do not. .... JS at 1:40 PM
The justification of the war in Kosova was first offered by George H. W. Bush who warned Milosevic about his continuing acts of terrorism and aggression.

Our assessment of the situation in the former Yugoslavia could well change if and as the situation changes. The stakes could grow; the conflict could threaten to spread. Indeed, we are constantly reassessing our options and are actively consulting with others about steps that might be taken to contain the fighting, protect the humanitarian effort, and deny Serbia the fruits of aggression.

After years of viewing Serbian atrocities in Bosnia, Clinton negotiated the Dayton Accords.

[comment split because of two link limit]

Posted by: Mike on July 13, 2007 at 8:09 PM | PERMALINK

[continued]
....Eventually the fear of a wider war that might destabilize Europe and international outrage over atrocities committed (particularly by Serb forces in Bosnia) forced the Clinton administration to act, both diplomatically and militarily. The United States brokered the Dayton agreement in 1995 that ended the fighting in Bosnia, and American-led NATO air strikes in 1999 forced the Yugoslav government of Slobodan Milosevic to allow NATO occupation of Kosovo. At the start of the twenty-first century, American military forces were part of NATO peacekeeping forces in both Bosnia and Kosovo....

The Korovo Group had been monitoring Serbian atrocities in Kosova since '97. Eventually, world outrage lead Clinton to form an alliance with NATO
...The proclaimed goal of the NATO operation was summed up by its spokesman as "Serbs out, peacekeepers in, refugees back". That is, Yugoslav troops would have to leave Kosovo and be replaced by international peacekeepers in order to ensure that the Albanian refugees could return to their homes. However, the summary had an unfortunate double meaning which caused NATO considerable embarrassment after the war, when over 200,000 Serbs and other non-Albanian minorities fled or were expelled from the province. It was also suggested that a small victorious war would help give NATO a new role....

You distort the events of the time in order to make some rather bizarre claims about unlikely possibilities. Gore is not Clinton is not Bush.

Posted by: Mike on July 13, 2007 at 8:24 PM | PERMALINK

I might also point out that our Naderites seem to believe they are the only true liberals, very similar to the Islamic radicals that are sure they are the only true Muslims and the Christian radicals who are sure that they are the only true Christians and the Jewish radicals that, you guessed it, think they are the only true children of God.

And you wonder why we think Nader and his worshipers are loony and just as scary as other radical purist groups that demand absolute fidelity to their own narrow set of beliefs or the y will punish you and relegate you to outcasts.

Posted by: anonymous on July 13, 2007 at 10:39 PM | PERMALINK

or you could work to enable fusion voting in more states and actually give people a chance/ability to vote positively for parties that more closely represent their views and at the same time not have this action enable the much worse evil. This seems to me an obvious win-win (which is why Mark Hanna worked to end this previously common practice), of great benefit to both the Dems and to minority parties that would almost surely align with them (though perhaps not great for the DLC).

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snicker-snack: . . . of great benefit to both the Dems and to minority parties that would almost surely align with them . . .

TPM: What's unclear at this point is why Nader wants to run. He recently conceded that he doesn’t expect to win a presidential race, he doesn’t expect to change the Democratic agenda, he doesn’t expect to appear in the debates, and he doesn’t even expect to make the ballot in every state. [And yet, he is again contemplating a run for president in 2008 and saves his strongest condemnation for the Democratic Party.]

Somehow I don't see Nader aligning himself with the Democrats or his foolish Green Party supporters.

Nor do I see any point in Democrats aligning themselves with the party that stabbed them in the back in 2008 and the man who did the same and is thinking of doing it again in 2008.

Because, you know, there is no difference - Clinton-McCain-Obama-Guiliani-Edwards-Thompson - to lunatics, at least.

Listening to Nader acolytes rant on about how THEIR candidate is to worthy that he blows everyone else away and makes them look the same would be hilarious, if not for the serious consequences.

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Posted by: Mamrheadshah on July 15, 2007 at 11:36 PM | PERMALINK

Over 3500 American troops are dead, dead, dead because of people...

I am willing to take responsibility for the murders my country commits regardless of who I voted for, as I think every citizen should.

Posted by: Brojo on July 16, 2007 at 11:32 AM | PERMALINK




 

 

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