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Old 08-10-2006, 12:11 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Huh ?

I found this column to be intriguing in a number of ways. I'd like to read other reactions to it, and further discuss my own:
Quote:
http://www.rockymountainnews.com/drm...834769,00.html
Rocky Mountain News

<b>Campos: Lieberman: Iraq war puppet</b>
July 11, 2006

I sometimes get e-mails from conspiracy theorists about 9/11. These people always claim that the 9/11 attacks were actually carried out by the U.S. government to create a pretext for the Iraq war.

I also get e-mails from people who encourage the American public to believe something just as crazy: that Saddam Hussein was personally involved in the 9/11 attacks.

There's a subtle distinction between the former and the latter correspondents. I'm pretty sure the former e-mails come from pathetic lunatics living in basements, who post their rants on Web sites that get 10 hits per day. I'm completely sure who sends me the latter messages: the White House Office of Communications.

All of which leads me to ask several of my fellow liberal columnists the following question: Remember when Sen. John McCain gave those speeches in which he accused the Bush administration of carrying out the 9/11 attacks? I'm sure you recall how much that upset Republican voters, especially in McCain's own state of Arizona.

And I bet you haven't forgotten how Charles Kraut- hammer and David Brooks and Victor David Hanson all rallied to McCain's defense, arguing there had to be room for diverse opinions in Republican Party, and that by backing McCain's opponent in Arizona's Republican senatorial primary Republican activists were demanding a dangerous ideological purity from their candidates.

None of this rings a bell? That's not surprising, because it's inconceivable anything like this could ever happen. Indeed, such a hypothetical is beyond absurd. Yet we live in such peculiar times that something rather similar is happening among Democrats.

Connecticut Sen. Joseph Lieberman has upset a lot of Democrats, especially in his home state, for several reasons. The biggest complaint isn't that Lieberman continues to support the Iraq war. After all, he is merely one of several prominent Democrats who do.

It isn't even that he wholeheartedly endorses President Bush's conduct of the war, although he does. It's that Lieberman goes out of his way to repeat the most outrageous Republican propaganda on this issue over and over again.

Consider what he said just last week: "The situation in Iraq is a lot better that it was a year ago," Lieberman observed. The Iraqis "are on the way to building a free and independent Iraq. Two-thirds of their military is now ready, on their own, to lead the fight with some logistical backing from the U.S. or stand up on their own totally. That's progress. And the question is, are we going to abandon them when they are making that progress?"

This might as well be a press release from the Ministry of Truth. Indeed, it's substantively identical to the "This Week in Iraq" e-mails I get from the White House. I'm sure my fellow liberal pundits get the same e-mails, and are similarly appalled by the willingness of the administration to continue to spout transparent nonsense in the service of a bankrupt policy. (Someone who claims "the situation in Iraq is a lot better than it was a year ago" deserves precisely as much respect as someone who claims President Bush carried out the 9/11 attacks).

So why are some liberals sticking up for Lieberman? The Bush administration sold the Iraq war on a phony premise. It worked hard to convince Americans that Saddam Hussein was behind 9/11. And it succeeded. (More than half the public believed this by the fall of 2002.) After utterly botching the occupation and causing incalculable damage to America, Bush's "plan" consists of continuing to pretend the whole thing isn't a catastrophe until the day he dumps it in his successor's lap. And Lieberman has been one of the president's biggest cheerleaders, every bloody step of the way.

Yet according to various liberal commentators, supporting Joe Lieberman's opponent in a Senate primary is somehow wrong. Have these people lost their minds?

Paul Campos is a professor of law at the University of Colorado. Reach him at paul.campos@colorado.edu.
Now that Joe Lieberman lost the Connecticut democratic party's primary on Aug. 8th, in a race that enabled the winner, Ned Lamont, to run on the democratic ticket in that state for the U.S. senate, for the seat that Lieberman has held for three terms....18 years, as of this coming January, and.....after reading Paul Campos's column, above, written last month, I'm thinking, out loud here.....why is the following statement that Paul Campos asked, above;
Quote:
(Someone who claims "the situation in Iraq is a lot better than it was a year ago" deserves precisely as much respect as someone who claims President Bush carried out the 9/11 attacks).
.....<b>not an accurate one ?</b>

Lieberman's defeat is already spawning republican "talking points", parroted, as expected, by political reporters of the MSM, that the reaction by Connecticut democrats who chose an unknown member of their party, with little experience as a political office holder, to run for the senate in Lieberman's place.....let's take a peak:
Quote:
http://www.time.com/time/nation/arti...224692,00.html
Posted Wednesday, Aug. 09, 2006

<b>.....the Republican Party worked ferociously</b> at every level to try to use the primary defeat of Sen. Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut <b>to portray the opposition as the party of weakness and isolation on national security and liberal leanings on domestic policy.</b> Doleful Democrats bemoaned the irony: At a time when Republicans should be back on their heels because of chaos abroad and President Bush's unpopularity, <b>the Democrats' rejection of a sensible, moralistic centrist has handed the GOP a weapon that could have vast ramifications for both the midterm elections of '06 and the big dance of '08.</b>

At breakfast time, Republican National Committee Chairman <b>Ken Mehlman was in Cleveland, decrying "an unfortunate embrace of isolationism, defeatism, and a blame- America-first attitude by national Democratic leaders at a time when retreating from the world is particularly dangerous."</b> In early afternoon, White House Press Secretary <b>Tony Snow told reporters in Crawford, Tex.: "It's a defining moment for the Democratic Party, whose national leaders now have made it clear that if you disagree with the extreme left in their party they're going to come after you."</b> And an hour or so later, <b>Vice President Cheney told wire-service reporters in a conference call: "It's an unfortunate development, I think, from the standpoint of the Democratic Party to see a man like Lieberman pushed aside because of his willingness to support an aggressive posture in terms of our national security strategy."......</b>
Okay.....???? Can anyone explain how the statements above, are any less "fantastic" than Lieberman's pronouncements concerning "the situation in Iraq", or the "Bush knew in advance or "did the 9/11 attacks", POV's, when the following is considered:
Quote:
Quote:
http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/relea.../20060808.html
Press Gaggle by Tony Snow - August 8, 2006
Crawford Middle School
Crawford, Texas

....Q Tony, there's a new Washington Post poll out today as to which political party people would trust to do a better job handling the U.S. campaign against terrorism? And Democrats got 46 percent, Republicans got 38 percent. Are you concerned that in this particular category, in which Republicans have always done better than Democrats, here, as well as in other categories, Republicans are falling behind?

MR. SNOW: For the umpteenth time, I will remind you that the President is not trying to conduct foreign policy in the war on terror in response to public opinion polls, but to the realities on the ground, and I am sure that that is going to be an important consideration voters are going to have to make this November:.....
More on the "who do Americans trust more in the fight against terrorism" poll,
in my recent post here:
http://www.tfproject.org/tfp/showpos...4&postcount=84
and there is this:
http://mediamatters.org/items/200608080005
Three of the last four Washington Post polls have found that a plurality of Americans trust Democrats rather than Republicans to handle the "campaign
against terrorism." Four consecutive Post polls -- and seven of the last eight -- have found that a plurality trust Democrats more when it comes to handling "the situation in Iraq." The lone exception found the parties tied."
So....I ask you, folks....please consider and comment as to what constitutes political statement and belief that is "on the fringe", versus what is a reasonable POV. If the opinion of the majority, or of a plurality, has some influence over what is, or what isn't "on the fringe", where do the viewpoints that "democrats are weak on national security", and "considering the progress being made by the presence of 132,000 U.S. troops in Iraq, a plan to withdraw all U.S. troops from Iraq is the same as <b>cutting and running"</b>, fit now....when compared to poll results of what Americans actually think these days? Are those two opinions, "mainstream", or "on the fringe"? Are a majority of Americans now worthy of <b>"the extreme left"</b> label?

Last edited by host; 08-10-2006 at 01:07 AM..
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Old 08-10-2006, 07:35 AM   #2 (permalink)
 
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we used to call this kind of thing "redbaiting"....now it is just a routine aspect of conservative political discourse--galvinize support amongst the rightwing extremist base by (1) erasing markers that would position extreme right politics as anything other than normal and (2) labelling political threats "extreme left"--this is not about describing the world, this is about conservative politics and its use of distortion of position to legitimate itself.

presumably newspaper editorial functionaries who themselves supported bushwar in iraq imagine that the writing is on the wall for them as well--so perhaps there is a level of self-defense that motivates their appropriation of the map of the political world according to karl rove.
perhaps the extensive use of the net to mobilize voters in ct represents a real threat to the talking heads on television and the editorial functionaries in newspapers, which they respond to by appropriating the map of the political world according to karl rove.
either way, this is straight up far right political gamesmanship that is being repeated as if it was not a problem.


conservative hysteria is just beginning around this one.
by november they will be exploring vast new frontiers in hysterical redbaiting.

on the other hand, it is doubtful that the administration's proposed changes to war crimes and their definition will pass by november--so maybe the administration is really worried about the possibility that they could be hoisted by their own bankrupt policies if they loose control of congress in november.
and hysteria is the right's strongest weapon.
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Last edited by roachboy; 08-10-2006 at 07:37 AM..
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Old 08-10-2006, 08:10 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I am saddened by Liberman's defeat. He was one of the few vestiges of people who could work with people on both sides of the lines.

That being said, it was Conneticut. They have not had a Republican majority there for a very long time. The entire state is liberal, I'm not mocking the state, it simply is. That they found Liberman as too conservative is a state of the polarizing times we live in, it happens.

As for why you question the popular opinion of the Democratic party as weak on defense makes sense beyond simply Iraq. The majority of people in polls hate how Bush has handled Iraq, yet still in polls trust Reps more than Dems in defense.

If you look at the Democratic party in the last 20 years this shouldn't surprise you. Clinton slashed the military dramatically, he lost the military vote almost completely (it voted 87% Rep. last election, close to it ever since Clinton). Coupled with Bush I and Reagan before, the military got used to the large budgets which allowed us to become the most technologically advanced military (before Reagan we lacked behind Russia in many ways).

At the moment I have yet to hear any concrete plans the Democrats have to offer. They vote against timetables to leave Iraq, they fail to offer any ways to finish the war (other than simply leaving, which won't cause peace or stability). While Hillary may be positioning herself to be hard on Rumsfeld, I dont hear any plans. That is the reason they aren't gaining while the Reps begin to fail. Until they give actual plans they will not win the "war" on opinion polls for national security.
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Old 08-10-2006, 09:17 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seaver
I am saddened by Liberman's defeat. He was one of the few vestiges of people who could work with people on both sides of the lines.

That being said, it was Conneticut. They have not had a Republican majority there for a very long time. The entire state is liberal, I'm not mocking the state, it simply is. That they found Liberman as too conservative is a state of the polarizing times we live in, it happens.

As for why you question the popular opinion of the Democratic party as weak on defense makes sense beyond simply Iraq. The majority of people in polls hate how Bush has handled Iraq, yet still in polls trust Reps more than Dems in defense......

......At the moment I have yet to hear any concrete plans the Democrats have to offer. They vote against timetables to leave Iraq, they fail to offer any ways to finish the war (other than simply leaving, which won't cause peace or stability). While Hillary may be positioning herself to be hard on Rumsfeld, I dont hear any plans. That is the reason they aren't gaining while the Reps begin to fail. Until they give actual plans they will not win the "war" on opinion polls for national security.
stevo....the previous governor of CT, John Rowland, a republican, was in that office for almost ten years.....he just got out of federal prison after serving a sentence after he copped a plea for taking bribes while in office, and his successor, Jody Rell, is also a republican. CT has the highest per capita income in the country, and Greenwich, Ct. was the home of the Bush family.

You must have missed the fact that recent polls all indicate that republicans have squandered, in the eyes of scientific sampling of American adults, the trust advantage that they formerly enjoyed in the area of perceptions that they were the stronger party on national security issues.

The core question of this thread, stevo, is what makes an opinion "mainstream", and what relegates it to the "fringe"? Lieberman, in the face of the facts, made statements that are absurd as President Bush's statements, with regard to "progress in Iraq". Politicians never lead....they simply check which way the wind is blowing, with regard to public sentiment, and they go with it....they "catch up" to where the public has moved to.

Lieberman and Bush made recent statements about Iraq "progress" that are absurd. The majority of Americans want the U.S. to withdraw our troops from Iraq, and a plurality believe that the democrats will manage the Iraq situation and national security in a more competent way than the president and his party are currently doing. That is fact. If you have information that will refute that....beyond the "fringe" pronouncements that I quoted from republicans officials.....lay it out for us.

You only repeated republican opinion that seems to have no current basis in fact....because Americans want to bring the troops home from Iraq, and they have not trusted republicans more than democrats on national security matters, for a signifigant number of months, and polling cycles, your opinion, and reports in the media, not withstanding......

I invite you to post facts that indicate that our military is closer than a year ago to completing it's mission....in Iraq.(what is the mission.....what do Bush and Rumsfeld describe the mission as being.....when they talk about "winning"?)
Post recent facts that back your opinion that Americans trust republicans more than democrats on national security and Iraq war management.

Last edited by host; 08-10-2006 at 09:23 AM..
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Old 08-10-2006, 10:08 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by host
stevo....the previous governor of CT, John Rowland, a republican, was in that office for almost ten years.....he just got out of federal prison after serving a sentence after he copped a plea for taking bribes while in office, and his successor, Jody Rell, is also a republican. CT has the highest per capita income in the country, and Greenwich, Ct. was the home of the Bush family.

You must have missed the fact that recent polls all indicate that republicans have squandered, in the eyes of scientific sampling of American adults, the trust advantage that they formerly enjoyed in the area of perceptions that they were the stronger party on national security issues.

The core question of this thread, stevo, is what makes an opinion "mainstream", and what relegates it to the "fringe"? Lieberman, in the face of the facts, made statements that are absurd as President Bush's statements, with regard to "progress in Iraq". Politicians never lead....they simply check which way the wind is blowing, with regard to public sentiment, and they go with it....they "catch up" to where the public has moved to.

Lieberman and Bush made recent statements about Iraq "progress" that are absurd. The majority of Americans want the U.S. to withdraw our troops from Iraq, and a plurality believe that the democrats will manage the Iraq situation and national security in a more competent way than the president and his party are currently doing. That is fact. If you have information that will refute that....beyond the "fringe" pronouncements that I quoted from republicans officials.....lay it out for us.

You only repeated republican opinion that seems to have no current basis in fact....because Americans want to bring the troops home from Iraq, and they have not trusted republicans more than democrats on national security matters, for a signifigant number of months, and polling cycles, your opinion, and reports in the media, not withstanding......

I invite you to post facts that indicate that our military is closer than a year ago to completing it's mission....in Iraq.(what is the mission.....what do Bush and Rumsfeld describe the mission as being.....when they talk about "winning"?)
Post recent facts that back your opinion that Americans trust republicans more than democrats on national security and Iraq war management.
I must have missed it all, host. I don't even remember posting in this thread. I think your getting your right-wingers mixed up. We all do look alike, though.
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Old 08-10-2006, 10:29 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Well I'm mistaken about CT, sorry I mistook it for Vermont. You're also mistaken... I'm not Stevo .

Anyways.. According to the Washington Post..http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv...oll_080606.htm

9. Whether or not you agree with them, do you think the Democrats are or are not offering the country a clear direction that's different from the Republicans?
Yes, No, No Opinion
8/6/06 - 48, 47, 5
5/15/06 - 44, 52, 4
11/2/05 - 44, 51, 5

6. Which political party, the (Democrats) or the (Republicans), do you trust to do a better job handling (ITEM)?

The U.S. campaign against terrorism


Democrats, Republicans, (vol.), (vol.), op.
8/6/06 - 46, 38, 1, 11, 4
6/25/06 - 39, 46, 2, 10, 3
5/15/06 - 46, 41, 2, 8, 3
4/9/06 - 46, 45, 1, 6, 1
3/5/06 - 39, 46, 3, 10, 2
1/26/06 - 41, 46, 2, 6, 4
11/2/05 - 42, 42, 4, 10, 3
12/15/02 - 25, 61, 5, 6, 2
10/27/02 - 26, 61, 4, 5, 4
9/26/02 - 30, 51, 6, 6, 8
7/15/02 - 27, 55, 9, 3, 6
1/27/02 - 23, 62, 10, 3, 2

10. Which political party, the (Democrats) or the (Republicans), do you think

has stronger leaders


Democrats, Republicans, (vol.), (vol.), op.
8/6/06 - 34, 52, 4, 6, 5
1/26/06 - 41, 47, 3, 6, 3
11/2/05 - 35, 51, 5, 8, 2

18. (HALF SAMPLE) Do you think the Democrats in Congress do or do not have a clear plan for handling the situation in Iraq?


Do, Do not, No opinion
8/6/06 - 27, 66, 6
6/25/06 - 24, 71, 5
3/5/06 - 24, 70, 6
12/18/05 - 23, 74, 3




While you will undoubtably point to poll number 6. However considering it's one in a dozen. When that becomes stable I'll rely on it.

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