Friday, May 25, 2007

The Least Worst

I understand my fellow liberal bloggers, t.v. commentators and anti war activists angst at yesterdays vote to continue funding the Iraq war with no time lines. The history of this blog is filled to the brim with rants against the Iraq war, George Bush, Bush's conduct of the war, and any other permutation of the Iraq wars affect on this nation. So I'm on board folks.

In fact not only do I understand the angst of those who I side with in the grand political scheme, but to use a famous Clintonism, I feel their pain. How is it that a President who is mired with public approval in the low 30's can be handed a victory over an issue that the vast majorities of the public disagree with him upon is simply mystifying. This President has the Democratic leadership in Congress wheedling their pants, afraid that he might talk badly about them. Yet having President Bush slam you around in todays environment should be considered a badge of honor, and a positive in the eyes of the nation. The Democrats are terrified of looking weak by not funding the troops, and wind up looking weak by not standing up to Bush.

So do they actually expect Bush and his boot lickers in Congress to start playing nice now? If so, the Democrats are not only weak, they are delusional. You can expect to hear Republicans across the nation and the air waves continue with the whole cut and run defeatocrats meme... because now these Republicans know that using that logic freaking works! And as long as the Democrats on the hill act like a herd of scared sheople being herded by wolves, you can't blame the Republicans for taking advantage of it either.

So am I cheesed? You bet! BUT... this is where I may part ways with many of those who agree with me. I'm not ready to completely wash my hands of all things Democrat and throw my all into building a 3rd party or marching on Washington to try to bring it all down.

I agree that the most important issue of our times is the Iraq war. On that alone, consider the head way made in the first five months of having a Democratic Congress. The first ever timeline to end the war passed and sent to the President. An epic battle over funding that went on for several months, where as under Republican leadership these funding bills were passed with barely a peep. Things have obviously shifted and I don't think that shift is going to start reversing itself to the Republican position. It will only get better from our perspective.

Iraq may be the most important issue, but it is not the only issue. The entire Justice Department embroglio would not be happening if the Republicans had retained control of Congress. I for one remember what oversight meant under Republican control. Oversight for them meant overlooking.

Frankly, after aproximately a decade in the minority, I would have been amazed if Democrats would have swept into power and not made any misteps early in the game. Let us hope they have learned their lessons on this one. Next time they should not start the debate under the premise that the Republicans just have to wait it out and the Democrats will fold. The starting premise of the next debate needs to be that the President may have the funding needed to end the war, but not to continue it indefinitely. If Bush vetoes that, he will be refusing the funding needed by our troops. It is not the Presidents job to fund the troops so he can take what he is offered, or have nothing at all.

Let us get this right going forward. But let us get this right with the party that can get it right rather than committing political suicide over a demand for purity in our party. If we fragment because of this we are playing directly into the hands of the Republicans, and if we think things are going to improve under their leadership then we are ignoring very recent history which demonstrates precisely the opposite.

To paraphrase Winston Churchill, the Democratic party is the worst political party you can vote for... except all the others.

What gets me is that simply choosing not to fund the Defense Department was never considered, and this is compounded by all of the MSM outlets--SF Chronicle, Salon, ABC just to mention a few--opining that the Democrats had not option.

They certainly did. They were too timid to choose it.
i part company in one other way as well...

yes, iraq is an extremely important priority for the nation, but, my belief is that nothing, NOTHING, is more important than the constitutional crisis that has been assaulting the very fabric of our country since the fateful scotus decision of 12 december 2000... the dismembering of that precious document has led to all the rest - illegal war, torture, extraordinary rendition, military tribunals, the unitary executive, signing statements, recess appointments, the creation of a one-party state, all of it... unless and until the constitution is restored to its proper place as THE foundation on which all else rests, nothing else matters... sadly, there doesn't seem to be anybody with access to a major national platform, democrat or republican, willing to step forward on that issue...

we most definitely SHOULD be marching on washington, millions of us, each with a copy of the constitution in our hands, to clog the nation's capital with a mass of humanity, and not moving until the abuses are renounced and the perpetrators are hounded from office...
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