Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Invoking Goodwin's Law

Every so often, for a laugh, I read the OpEd pieces in the New York Daily News. The New York Daily News, for those of you who have the misfortune of living outside the Big Apple, is a sort of....well, neo-Murdochian attempt at being the middle-of-the-road, Joe Lunchbucket newspaper. Not as obviously partisan and fascist as the Murdoch-owned New York Post, it has even challenged Bush on such issues (mostly local) as the health of first responders and other emergency workers at Ground Zero.

This, despite the fact that its publisher, Mort Zuckerman, is so deeply in the pockets of Bush that Bush no longer needs to wear a jockstrap while jogging for all MZ's ball-fondling.

Ewwwww....there's an image I really didn't need to ponder...anyway...I ran across this today, and realized I have to get out of my post-9/11 commemoration depression:
W's firm stand has foes shaky

"Whatever mistakes have been made in Iraq, the worst mistake would be to think that if we pulled out, the terrorists would leave us alone. They will not leave us alone. They will follow us. The safety of America depends on the outcome of the battle in the streets of Baghdad," he said.

If that wasn't clear enough, he added: "This struggle has been called a clash of civilizations. In truth, it is a struggle for civilization."

That's a great line and, coming after a day of commemorative events that still pack a powerful emotional punch, it had to give Dem strategists second thoughts. And then along came Al Qaeda.

Even as Bush was quoting Bin Laden as calling Iraq "the Third World War," Bin Laden's deputy released a video promising attacks against the U.S. and Israel. "The days are pregnant and giving birth to new events," Ayman al-Zawahiri vowed. He said our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan are "doomed to defeat" and that we would be driven out of the Middle East.

His threats are like a sharp stick in the eye, especially for Democrats. Look at the scrambled dynamics this way: If Bush and Bin Laden agree that Iraq is a key front, can Democrats really argue it's not? Can their candidates for Congress still tell voters it's okay to pull out of Iraq? Do they even believe it themselves?
In a nutshell, there's the neo-con fallback option: when in doubt, drop back fifteen, punt the "terror" ball, and watch the Dems fumble it.

Hey, it worked in 2004. Had John Kerry spent even five minutes to say "I'd like to kill Osama bin Laden for exposing the weaknesses of this nation where Bush let him get away in Tora Bora," instead of grinding out policy paper after position paper detailing the many errors of the first Bush term, we'd be looking forward to the second Kerry term and how he'd have the luxury of picking up another dozen Senate seats this year.

So, is Iraq a key front? Yes. Because we made it so, and it's up to us to make it NOT so. I can't be any plainer than that, can I? If you sum up the future of the Iraq debacle in a sentence (which I maintain you can't since we fucked it up so royally), the words "civil war," "theocracy," and "Iran" are guaranteed to be in there. I can also promise you that "democracy" will not, except as in the phrase "In our failed attempts to ram democracy down the throats of a people who wanted it, but not at our price..."

Rather than write a piece about how we might even make a half-hearted attempt to fix the problem -- admittedly, this involves a certain amount of thinking and who can be bothered doing that? -- Goodwin immediate invokes the "Dems are going to loo-oose" chant, like a little girl on a playground swing set. Keep pumping, Sally, and maybe one day you'll make the Big Girl X Games.

I wonder if Goodwin has a sinus condition, because this opinion piece sure sounds like it was written by a mouth breather...

, ,