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Sheep in wolves' clothing

By Michael J. Smith on Thursday January 18, 2007 11:22 AM

The New York Times is, apparently, the only entity in the world that takes Joe Biden seriously:
The Senate set the stage on Wednesday for a direct clash with President Bush over the war, with two senior Democrats and a prominent Republican introducing a symbolic measure to declare that the administration’s plan to send additional troops to Iraq runs counter to the national interest.

The resolution, proposed by Senators Joseph R. Biden Jr. of Delaware and Carl Levin of Michigan, both Democrats, and Chuck Hagel of Nebraska, a Republican, would not be binding, and the White House said it would have no effect on Mr. Bush’s plan to send more than 20,000 additional troops to Iraq.

The normally unfunny Dana Milbank, however, rises a bit above his usual level with a rogue's gallery of non-proposals:
Lawmakers were introducing Iraq legislation at a mad pace yesterday, at one point in the afternoon scheduling news conferences in half-hour intervals. By the end of the day, they had issued more bills than Pepco.... Booking the Senate TV studio at 2:30 p.m. were Sens. Joseph Biden (D-Del.), Carl Levin (D-Mich.) and Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.), with their own Iraq resolution. They had to vacate the room at 3 p.m. for the arrival of Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) and Evan Bayh (D-Ind.) and Rep. John McHugh (R-N.Y.); Clinton floated a variation of the Dodd plan. Minutes after that session, Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) issued a statement announcing legislation ordering a "phased redeployment" of U.S. troops from Iraq.

Even Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards, who gave up his Senate seat, tried to get a piece of the action yesterday. His campaign sent out a fundraising appeal, asking: "Please chip in to help stop this escalation today."

A couple of days ago we made the point here -- not for the first time -- that the Democrats aren't afraid to end the war; rather, they don't want to end the war. If they were afraid, they wouldn't be indulging in this shadow-play; and if they were serious, they'd be doing something real.

Here's the reason for the shadow-play:

A strong majority of Americans opposes President Bush's decision to send more troops to Iraq, and about half of the country wants Congress to block the deployment, a Times/Bloomberg poll has found.... more than three-fifths of those surveyed said the war was not worth fighting, and only one-third approved of his handling of the conflict.

Asked about the president's recent announcement that he would dispatch an additional 21,500 troops to Iraq, three-fifths said they opposed the move, whereas just over one-third backed it.... About one-fourth of Republicans said they did not believe the war was worth fighting....

As usual, the people are way ahead of their leaders. The Democrats can read polls and they know where the public is. But they don't want to cross whoever it is that's the driving force behind this war -- the oil sector or the Israel sector, or pick your own suspect (a prize will be awarded for the most original hypothesis). So their solution is, as usual, the old reliable plot gambit of tired musical-comedy playwrights: "Let's put on a show!"

Comments (5)

js paine:

donk job one

fighting for the status quo
look like fighting for humanity


"As usual, the people are way ahead of their leaders. The Democrats can read polls and they know where the public is."

MJS, I'm going to say that that is a major part of the reason. What I think they're doing is making a display of stubborness on this -- because they feel a need to defy the public, especially their own constituents. The constituents got a little uppity prior to the last popularity contest, and made it clear they were voting against the war. Corporate managers know how this kind of attitude plays out. Uppity in one thing, soon they'll be uppity in everything. It will be a crisis of democracy; too much democracy, just like happened before. Permissiveness caused so much trouble. Better to nip it in the bud.

js paine:

ah scruggles

the high phobias of the low 70's

the really key global
half decades in my life time
the post 72 70's
the pre 47 40's

i missed
the first big
swing up
of the 60 year logistic
i caught all of the big swing down
of that same logistic

Over on a local board I frequent, the Donks are up in arms because GOP Senator Gordon Smith has now changed his mind about the war. They accuse him of twisting in the wind and only changing his mind because of his party's setbacks. All well and good, up to a point. Smith changed his mind, on a one-time basis, based on evidence that even a shallow twit such as himself could not ignore. What does that say about all the Democrats who voted the same way he did, have ready access to the same conclusion and the same action, and will yet not even take the tepid action that Smith has ? Tune in tomorrow. Or not.

js paine:

sorry so gnomic
60 years full shape
a "normal " or gauss curve
interval : '41-'01

30 up

30 down
rate of change
continuously changing thru out

moment there in the middle where
change stopped
i remember it well
i was on lsd
and a raging hurricane in progress all around me
seemed like hyperbolic wall paper

"sheeet boy
if this ....all you got jackson"

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