Tuesday, November 13, 2007


Once More Unto the Breach, Dear Friends, Once More

In criminal jury trials, the loser gets a chance to have each of the jurors polled, that is, to hear each juror repeat the verdict the judge just read. We prosecutors called that getting kicked in the head 12 more times, especially when the public defenders requested it, as they nearly always did. You may wonder why I'm recalling that bit of ancient, personal history. Here's why:

The Democratic leadership (Reid, Hoyer, and Schumer, et al.) plan, incredibly, to try to micro-manage the conduct of the war in Iraq and Afghanistan by putting, yet again, a timetable for withdrawal from Iraq in the newest spending bill. They hope to lose hold, yet again, a vote on this vain, 41st attempt before Thanksgiving.

They couldn't do it when we weren't winning the war earlier this year; they certainly won't be able to do it now that we are doing much better.

I just sat through the prepared statements the leaders (except Pelosi) gave at a press conference today, rerun on C-SPAN (such is the non-stop adventure my life has become) and it was painful to watch such abject self delusion. Get this--the new reason for the Democrats to stop the war before we win it--we're spending too much money on it. The Democrats were complaining we were spending too much money. I'd laugh if it weren't so pathetic.

I wondered if my partisanship is blinding me to the things that might make this a good idea after all. I certainly can't think of any, indeed doing it, trying to strangle a win in the cradle, holds for me great sulphurous whiffs of desperation. So I checked around with some of the still sane lefty bloggers who even acknowledged the renewed plan revealed at the conference, and lo, here is what huge war critic, and Time writer, Joe Klein wrote:

Also obvious: There are fewer votes now in Congress--and less cause--to cut off funding for the war than there were last Spring. A renewed campaign on the part of the hapless Democratic leadership to cut off the supplemental funds will only increase the public sense of Democratic futility. It will also play into the very real, and growing, public perception that Democrats are too busy wasting time on symbolic measures (like trying to cut off funds for the war) and shoveling pork (the water projects bill) to pass anything substantive for the public good. Too much time, and political capital, has been wasted fighting Bush legislatively on the war. I'm sure the President and the Republican Party are salivating over the prospect that Democrats will waste more time and capital over it this month...especially at a moment, however fleeting, when the situation on the ground seems to have improved in Iraq. Democrats need to think this over very, very carefully before they proceed. (Emphasis added).

So it's not just me. Everyone can see this is a mistake on the part of the 'hapless Democratic leadership.' Well, nearly everyone. Arriana H. thinks the Dems should just block the funding: But the truth is, Democrats have all the votes they need to stop the war -- if they are willing to use the power given them by the Constitution to block the supplemental funding bill unless it includes a deadline for bringing the troops home.

I'd call that support of yet another kick in the head.

There's certainly a lot of anger from the ultra left (or tragically anti-Iraq war) about the Democrat's inability here. Witness: ...in fact they can stop the war any Goddamn time they want, and what they're really saying is, "We don't have the balls to stop the war. We stink of fear for our jobs and nothing is more important to us than that, certainly not mere trifles like the lives of our citizens, or the Constitution."

Retreat is so ingrained in the Democrats regarding Iraq that they have to retreat now from their former retreat on retreat.

(h/t Glenn Reynolds)


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