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Democrats on W — Criticism without Substance

You know the MSM’s coverage of the Iraq war is biased when they fail to question war critics, like incoming House Ways and Means Committee chairman Charles Rangel who accuse the president of leading us to war on “flimsy evidence.” It has now become practically a mantra of the Left (repeated uncritically by the media) that the President misled us into war.

Yet, too often when these critics offer up their accusations, they fail to offer any specifics — that is, they provide no evidence the president knowingly deceived us — and misrepresent the actual reasons he outlined when, about four years ago, he made the case for liberating Iraq. He did not, as many on the left claim, focus entirely on Iraq’s WMD (Weapons of Mass Destruction) program. While that was a large part of his case, he also mentioned Iraq’s repeated violations of international law and, before the first troops crossed into Iraq, made the case for building democracy in that troubled land.

One of the great good things about a free society is that we can criticize our leaders. And I’m not discouraging those opposed to the president for taking issue with his policies. What is troubling, however, is that they are not faulting his record as it is — but as they wish it were. And in age when the president’s speeches and public comments from his entire term of office are easily accessible to any individual (with a computer and modem), it’s reprehensible that his adversaries continually misrepresent his record.

If Mr. Rangel believes the president’s rationale was flimsy, he should show why he believes that to be the case. If others claim the president “misled us into war,” then they need show that, as he made the case for war, he relied upon evidence that he knew to be false or otherwise inaccurate.

It’s important that we debate the president’s decision (approved by Congress) to liberate Iraq, especially as we consider how to complete the mission and how future military endeavors could advance our national security. But, let’s do so based on the record. It’s a sad commentary on the president’s critics that, in many cases, instead of making serious arguments against policies, they repeat tired mantras which they refuse to substantiate.

And it’s sadder still that the media doesn’t challenge those critics as they would were they conservative critics of a liberal Administration.

UPDATE: While at the gym, I watched Keith Olbermann on MSNBC and, thanks to the closed captioning, could read his rant. He accused the President of lying us into war, yet failed to specify a single lie the president made. Such angry rhetoric is the leftist mantra. And someone needs to call these people out on their harangues and demand their provide evidence to substantiate their attacks.

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55 Comments

  1. oh you’ll get your evidence all right. subpoena power. you’ll get it in spades. all you’ll HAVE is evidence

    Comment by lester — November 20, 2006 @ 4:21 pm - November 20, 2006

  2. Much like Jabba the Hutt’s personal assistant, lester proves how amenable he is to the Jedi mind trick.

    Too bad he’s following the Dark Side of the Force.

    Comment by HollywoodNeoCon — November 20, 2006 @ 4:41 pm - November 20, 2006

  3. Well, like I’ve always said, liberals love America the way OJ loved Nicole.

    Regards,
    Peter H.

    Comment by Peter Hughes — November 20, 2006 @ 4:45 pm - November 20, 2006

  4. Dan, Dan, Dan. You continue to fail to appreciate that the entire WOT was a ruse by the Kennibunkport Bushes to avenge the honor of Elder Bush who was murderously threatened by Saddam –and made to hide in Texas and Maine while quaking in terror and humiliation.

    The Left and the media have explained all this to you repeatedly. The carnage on Sept 11th –a ruse to get us angry at the a-rabs.

    Bush 43′s declaration of war on terrorists in the State of the Union Address –just a ruse to get us into Iraq.

    The invasion of Afghanistan –just a ruse to get us into Iraq.

    The fear mongering by Bush43 about North Korea and Iran –just a ruse to keep America scared stiff while we ratchet things up in Iraq.

    The people spoke on Election Day –no, the World spoke on Election Day– and said “Enough!”. Leave Iraq now. Cut & Run. Scamper and Hide. The Democrats ran on an anti-war plank (ok, so they didn’t exactly say that) and –according to Ian: a promise to raise the minimum wage, enact an energy policy that teaches BigOil a lesson, and clean up corruption in DC (don’t tell Murtha).

    Why you can’t accept that the MSM is telling the truth in an unbiased, fair and impartial manner and simply reporting the “news”?

    Oh wait… is this the Charlie Rangel who’s calling for establishing a military draft? I thought the Left claimed Bush was going to pop that one on college-aged kids after the elections? Now Charlie is doing it?

    Talk about a ruse.

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — November 20, 2006 @ 5:22 pm - November 20, 2006

  5. On Jan 20th the leftists will be in charge of the purse strings. At that time I will expect cut and run as they promised during the campaign. It was one of the few things they said they’d accomplish if elected. They will have the power. They can immediately cut off all funding for the troops. The ones they say they support. On Jan 21 I will expect the troops to begin boarding carriers to retreat. Dems in charge = retreat. If they don’t begin immediate retreat on Jan 21 they are liars. The slaughter of innocents in Iraq that follows is blood on the hands of the leftists. Remember the millions who died in Vietnam and Cambodia at the hands of the conquering Communists.

    Comment by Gene in Pennsylvania — November 20, 2006 @ 9:59 pm - November 20, 2006

  6. The war in Iraq never did compliment conservative principles that well. The idea that American power could turn Iraq into an oasis of democracy was always an idea better suited to liberal idealism than conservative realism. It was more a dream, than a plan. It’s something that I hear Senator Clinton plans to make a central theme of her Presidential campaign. She will deftly argue that, after 8 years of President Bush, America needs a return to realism. From her stand point, it’s a winning argument because it can position her to the right.

    Comment by Chase — November 21, 2006 @ 12:21 am - November 21, 2006

  7. President Bush says “We do not torture”.
    The US Government waterboards prisoners.
    Waterboarding is torture.
    The President is a liar.

    And do spare me from the morally pathetic attempts to redefine waterboarding or other “stress positions” as anything but torture.

    Comment by Patrick (gryph) — November 21, 2006 @ 2:50 am - November 21, 2006

  8. Dan, did you pay Patrick(gryph) to prove your point about “Democrats on W –Criticism without Substance”? It seems so.

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — November 21, 2006 @ 9:30 am - November 21, 2006

  9. Web Reconnaissance for 11/21/2006…

    A short recon of what?s out there that might draw your attention….

    Trackback by The Thunder Run — November 21, 2006 @ 10:14 am - November 21, 2006

  10. Patrick whines…

    “President Bush says “We do not torture”.
    The US Government waterboards prisoners.
    Waterboarding is torture.
    The President is a liar.
    And do spare me from the morally pathetic attempts to redefine waterboarding or other “stress positions” as anything but torture.”

    I hardly know where to begin with this incredibly flawed argument put forth by our friend, Mahatma Gryph.

    On the one hand, he asserts that waterboarding is torture. Ok, so let’s begin with that. First of all, gryph, who claims thusly? You? Amnesty International? Your Dear Dhimmicrat Leaders? Who? Before you start the same old meme you’ve been pissing about for five years or so, why don’t you back up your little bullshit equation with some facts, mmkay?

    Secondly, the whole “spare me” plea comes off as nothing more than morally superior crap, and only serves to embolden those of us who really don’t care to join you and the rest of your Heaven’s Gate lemmings.

    You can catch that utopian comet all on your own, dear.

    Comment by HollywoodNeoCon — November 21, 2006 @ 10:19 am - November 21, 2006

  11. As even a fifth-grader knows intuitively (or without words): Torture is when you inflict pain and injury for the sheer sake of inflicting pain and injury, i.e. for sheer power / humiliation / terror.

    No amount of Gryph’s or Andrew Sullivan’s desperate, and essentially malevolent or anti-American, efforts to re-define torture as something else – or to re-define life-saving techniques of manipulative interrogation as “torture” – will ever suffice to make it so.

    Comment by Calarato — November 21, 2006 @ 10:29 am - November 21, 2006

  12. P.S. As for waterboarding specifically: It’s a standard part of certain troop training – such as Navy SEALs, I believe. I also believe that terrorist interrogation-wise, it is used only when nothing else works and with appropriate medical safety monitoring.

    Gryph wants to accuse our uniformed service and CIA people of being torturers. That’s un-American and malevolent. They ARE NOT. Period. Gryph, deal with it.

    Comment by Calarato — November 21, 2006 @ 10:37 am - November 21, 2006

  13. Calarato, if you look carefully at gryph’s statement, he’s arguing craftily and slyly that it’s the “US government” that uses waterboarding as a torture device… not US military service personnel –although he might want others here to conclude he means it to apply to US troops, private sector govt-hired interrogation specialists, the CIA or others. But’s that par for the course on gryph’s rip of all things military –until the brass allow gays to openly cruise the barracks, that is.

    Like the Downing Street Memo, no WMD in Iraq, “Saddam was a tool for the American govt (remember the Rummie pic on all the GayLeftBorg and RadicalDem websites), “we’re in this fight alone and there are no coalition forces”, et cetera… all those lies are criticisms from the Left made up and without any substance. Just like Dan offered in his piece that leads this thread.

    If the Left didn’t have those lies, they’d make up others as they go. The problem for many in America is how willingly the Left was to make up those lies without being required to back them up with proof, be held accountable by someone –certainly not the MSM– and how repeating silly lies over and over will “set” the lie as truth in the mind of public opinion.

    Kind of like another big lie: the world is begging for Bush to be unseated so it can once again embrace Americans in the brotherhood of the UN and World Peace and “getting along togetherness”. I think it’s so the UN and others can get back to corruption and self-interest as game #1.

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — November 21, 2006 @ 12:04 pm - November 21, 2006

  14. Calarato, if you look carefully at gryph’s statement, he’s arguing craftily and slyly that it’s the “US government” that uses waterboarding as a torture device… not US military service personnel…

    I know, Matt. It’s called “weasel words”, or “being slimy”. I went behind his sliminess.

    This mythical, hypothetical “US government” that tortures… Does it live in the sky and do things by magic? Of course not. It consists of actual, flesh and blood people.

    What people? In the case of Gryph’s present rhetoric: Those people who actually have contact with terrorists. Umm, what people are they? CIA officials, and US service men / women.

    Another weasel-out Gryph gave himself, if you notice, is that ‘officially’ his words only attack President Bush. Presumably, all those CIA and service people who actually have the contact with terrorists and do the “torturing” would only be following Bush’s orders.

    But here’s the thing: they are all specifically trained, advised, entitled and required to refuse illegal orders.

    Just as John Kerry inevitably smears US service people as morons when he characterizes President Bush’s Iraq policy as moronic – because many of those people enlisted or re-enlisted specifically to carry out President Bush’s Iraq policy… so Gryph inevitably smears our CIA and service people as torturers, when he calls “the US government” a torturer – because those people daily and willingly risk their lives to carry out US government policy, rather than refusing it as illegal.

    I just compared Gryph to John Kerry, and I did so because honestly they strike me as much the same. Andrew Sullivan as well.

    Comment by Calarato — November 21, 2006 @ 1:38 pm - November 21, 2006

  15. the millions of people who voted the republicans out of the house and senate were equally unsubstantial. I mean, they love america like OJ loved Nicole. why would anyone want to pull out of Iraq? look at how we’re stabilizing the middle east

    Comment by lester — November 21, 2006 @ 2:12 pm - November 21, 2006

  16. First, the pearl-clutching is hilarious, given that your party routinely accused President Clinton of being a rapist, murderer, serial liar, etc. It’s the projection strategy, accusing people of BDS because you yourselves suffer from CDS.

    Second, you don’t have to show that Bush knew there were no WMDs. All you have to do is to show that Bush downplayed or ignored the evidence that the WMD thing was not a “slam dunk.” There was plenty of evidence that Saddam was nowhere near being able to get a nuke; that was the point of Joe Wilson’s op-ed — that even if Saddam wanted a nuke he had no chance of getting it. Bush either covered up, downplayed or denied the existence of that evidence because it didn’t back up what he wanted to believe.

    Third, remember that even if “most” people believed Saddam had WMDs in 2002, we didn’t invade until the U.N. inspectors went in. Once the U.N. inspectors were finding nothing, a reasonable person would have suspected that Saddam might not have WMDs and that we should wait a while to see what happened. Instead Bush kicked the U.N. inspectors out and invaded. This suggests that he didn’t care whether Saddam had WMDs or not, and that he is, yes, lying when he says that WMD was a factor in the decision to invade.

    Fourth, who cares whether he lied or not? What matters is that Bush’s decision to invade Iraq was a disastrous decision that was contrary to our national interest and has damaged our national security (as well as making Iraq indisputably worse off than it was even under Saddam). Whether he made this decision in good faith or not hardly matters; what matters is that Bush’s decision has been proven wrong by events, and that we should therefore listen to people who had the sense to oppose this decision.

    Howard Dean opposed the Iraq war on the basis that it was contrary to our national interests. Therefore, Howard Dean is credible on national security and America’s interests, and Bush is not. Whether Bush “lied” is far less important than the fact that Bush messed up America’s national security.

    For the record, I think the worst Bush dishonesty came not before the war but later: his years of denial that the war was a disaster, his attempts to convince us all that we were “winning” and that the MSM wasn’t reporting the “good news” from Iraq. Bush must have known, since he has the evidence, that Iraq is in fact WORSE than the MSM reports, and getting steadily worse every day. But he (and his enablers in the “conservative” media) dishonestly pretended that the war was going great and only evil liberal quagmiristas would say otherwise. That is far worse dishonesty than the usual dishonesty that always precedes a war (any war).

    Comment by M.A. — November 21, 2006 @ 2:15 pm - November 21, 2006

  17. Sure, according to liberals any source of any mild discomfort is “torture.” Water-boarding, apparently… and listing to liberals.

    If they really wanted to torture terrorists, why not just play tapes of Al Gore lying about Global Warming or John Kerry debating himself.

    Comment by Kyle — November 21, 2006 @ 2:33 pm - November 21, 2006

  18. Yep, M.A., there were lots of conservatives hurling lots of unfounded allegations against Clinton in the 1990s – but the difference is that the media didn’t pay much heed to them because many of them were far-fetched. Just as are the allegations against this Administration, only the MSM takes them more seriously.

    Please note that I had written above, “it’s sadder still that the media doesn’t challenge those critics as they would were they conservative critics of a liberal Administration.” The MSM may not have challenged those critics; they just ignored them. As, in most cases, they should have.

    In the 1990s, the MSM downplayed a corroborated accusation of rape against the Democratic President. See, e.g., Juanita Broaddrick.

    Glad to see you’re asking who cares whether or not he lied. But, that seems to be the concern of many on the left – and the very subject of Mr. Olbermann’s rant yesterday.

    If you have evidence of the president’s dishonesty, please provide specifics. You guys take this as an article of faith. You say his dishonesty is his denial, yet that’s hardly a specific. He has long acknowledged that we face challenges there, but has perhaps not provided the appropriate policies to address those challenges.

    We are winning in Iraq, but at slower pace that we should be. Iraq is not worse that the MSM reports; it’s far better, but alas not good enough. I do think we need to shift tactics there. And perhaps the president had been too stubborn in not doing so earlier. That’s not dishonesty, just an error of judgment. And I do believe it’s fair to fault the president (& his team) for such errors.

    Comment by GayPatriotWest — November 21, 2006 @ 2:43 pm - November 21, 2006

  19. the media didn’t downplay juanita broderick. I remember the Boston Globe had an editorial cartoon that showed clinton with a big black eye that said “rape accusation”. it was discussed seriously, but this was immediately after monica lewinsky and the impeachment and people weren’t sure what to believe.

    Comment by lester — November 21, 2006 @ 2:58 pm - November 21, 2006

  20. hi ya all, did olbermann take the gerbil to the woodshed today or what? a tad vitrioloc doncha think? xo

    Comment by markie — November 21, 2006 @ 3:27 pm - November 21, 2006

  21. “sorry” vitriolic

    Comment by markie — November 21, 2006 @ 3:28 pm - November 21, 2006

  22. It’s the projection strategy, accusing people of BDS because you yourselves suffer from CDS.

    Of course, the irony there is that you are accusing other people of using the strategy that you yourself are practicing.

    There was plenty of evidence that Saddam was nowhere near being able to get a nuke; that was the point of Joe Wilson’s op-ed — that even if Saddam wanted a nuke he had no chance of getting it.

    Of course, what puppet Joe Wilson — who deliberately sabotaged his own intelligence-gathering mission by telling everyone to whom he talked that he was working for the CIA — leaves out is that Saddam already HAD an enormous amount of uranium, both refined and not.

    Furthermore, MA, leftists like yourself and Howard Dean had a recent aneurysm, claiming that the plans that Saddam possessed being placed on a website were an incredible danger to the United States. However, Howard Dean previously claimed that said plans, in the hands of a dictator who possessed the uranium, equipment, finances, technical knowledge, and staff, were NOT a danger at all.

    Third, remember that even if “most” people believed Saddam had WMDs in 2002, we didn’t invade until the U.N. inspectors went in. Once the U.N. inspectors were finding nothing, a reasonable person would have suspected that Saddam might not have WMDs and that we should wait a while to see what happened.

    Or we could have gone on the perfectly-reasonable assumption that the billions of dollars in bribes that Saddam was channeling to the UN were sapping both their will and their ability to find anything — as was made obvious by their practically having to be forced to admit that Saddam was NOT complying and was NOT providing full cooperation and openness as was previously demanded.

    Bush must have known, since he has the evidence, that Iraq is in fact WORSE than the MSM reports, and getting steadily worse every day. But he (and his enablers in the “conservative” media) dishonestly pretended that the war was going great and only evil liberal quagmiristas would say otherwise. That is far worse dishonesty than the usual dishonesty that always precedes a war (any war).

    The reason Iraq looks bad, MA, is because liberal leftists like yourself refuse to openly admit what went on before. Indeed, leftists like Scott Ritter and puppet media like Eason Jordan openly admitted that they were covering up Saddam’s abuses in order to “wage peace” — and because, as Jordan was forced to admit, Saddam would butcher and torture anyone who told the truth about his regime.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — November 21, 2006 @ 3:35 pm - November 21, 2006

  23. Waterboarding and other aggressive interrogation techiniques are always an option. However, the government shouldn’t make them legal or routine. If, in an extraordinary circumstance, those conducting an interrogation believe they must break the law in order to save lives, then they should do that. But they should be held to account and afterwards, made to explain why they did it. That’s why, as a matter of deterence, those techniques should remain against the law. Such interrogation techiniques should always remain an option of last resort in the most extreme circumstances.

    Comment by Chase — November 21, 2006 @ 3:42 pm - November 21, 2006

  24. If you have evidence of the president’s dishonesty, please provide specifics.

    The usual specifics — the Downing Street Memo, Jack Abramoff’s letter about “the impending war with Iraq,” etc, etc. There is a ton of evidence that Bush had made up his mind to go to war with Iraq no matter what; that’s where the dishonesty was — that he claimed he was trying to avoid war when all evidence now shows that he wanted a war even if it wasn’t necessary. The Downing Street Memo doesn’t prove Bush lied about WMD, but it does prove that he wanted a war with Iraq no matter what the evidence would show. Whether he lied about WMD is almost beside the point; he wanted a war and didn’t seem to care if it was necessary, and that’s bad enough.

    Iraq is not worse that the MSM reports; it’s far better, but alas not good enough.

    No, no, no. It’s far worse than the MSM reports. The mainstream reporters can’t get out of the Green Zone to report on schools being painted, but they also can’t report on much of the horror that goes on in Iraq every day; they have to stick with the obvious horrors. But the fact that you still believe that Iraq is better than the MSM reports is proof of the President’s dangerous dishonesty; he has been endeavoring to convince Americans that Iraq really isn’t a disaster, and he’s unfortunately succeeded in bamboozling you.

    Comment by M.A. — November 21, 2006 @ 3:42 pm - November 21, 2006

  25. Gee.. now Abramoff sent us into Iraq, with Cheney’s help?

    MAYBE he said that because he wasnt a complete idiot and figured SOMETHING would happen, because of 12 flouted UN SEC resolutions

    The reporters cant get out to report the carnage, it’s so bad… but they CAN embed WITH the iraqi terrorists.

    If they HAD gotten out of the Green Zone a couple years ago… and stayed away from both the troops and the insurgents.. we might be seeing a wholly different picture.

    And dont you dare say that waterboarding isnt torture.. it is because I say it is.

    heh…

    Comment by pettyfog — November 21, 2006 @ 4:07 pm - November 21, 2006

  26. Next, MA will share with us that 45 yrs ago Laura Bush had a vision of America going to war with Iraq just before she gunned the engine and mowed down her teen-aged classmate and chum. Or wait, Karl Rove launched the war because his ex-lover joined the Marines and he wanted a war to grab some salad for his dress blues… no wait… it never ends. The Left has been making it up since Day 1.

    And for them, it all boils down to this: they HAVE to make Bush look bad because comparing him to Slick Willy makes the 42 Prez look horrible. It’s all about bitter, little queens on the Left seeking vengeance on the road of vindictiveness. And they think regular people have a problem with Clinton? LOL!

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — November 21, 2006 @ 4:11 pm - November 21, 2006

  27. Next, MA will share with us that 45 yrs ago Laura Bush had a vision of America going to war with Iraq just before she gunned the engine and mowed down her teen-aged classmate and chum. Or wait, Karl Rove launched the war because his ex-lover joined the Marines and he wanted a war to grab some salad for his dress blues… no wait… it never ends. The Left has been making it up since Day 1.

    One of the oddities of Bush worshippers (a far weirder breed than Bush haters) is their need to make everything into a crazy conspiracy theory when it isn’t. The scenarios you posit are of course silly and crazy. But it’s not silly and crazy to say that a President lied to the people he serves, or that he was less than honest about why he went to war. Leaders lie all the time. There is frequent dishonesty in the run-up to wars. It’s not that Bush is uniquely evil in these respects; it’s just that he’s backed up by a cadre of nutty cultists who clutch their pearls and scream at the very suggestion that he might have done what world leaders do all the time (tell lies).

    Comment by M.A. — November 21, 2006 @ 4:24 pm - November 21, 2006

  28. MA, I appreciate you think there are some whacked out conspiracy nuts out on the political landscape… like the guys on the Left who were offering that Bush would be calling up the draft AFTER the election… or the guys on the Left who were offering that Bush had Osama bin Laden in hiding and would “bring him to trial” just before the election (all those fantasy land Left “October surprises” eh?)… or that the neocons allowed the attack on the WTC to happen in order to mix it up with Saddam after we went into Afghanistan… or, well wait… you used the Downing Street Memo as proof Bush lied.

    What more could we want than the ultimate conspiracy nuthouse rant: the Downing Street Memo?

    It’s why the Democrats’ criticsm of Bush lacks substance… you guys just make it up as you go. And the voters fell for it… it doesn’t make you leaders, just good hucksters.

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — November 21, 2006 @ 4:32 pm - November 21, 2006

  29. What more could we want than the ultimate conspiracy nuthouse rant: the Downing Street Memo?

    Why is it a conspiracy nuthouse rant? It’s a real memo, and it says something that is perfectly plausible and fits in with what was happening in 2002: Bush had decided on his policy (invade Iraq) and only wanted to hear facts that backed up his chosen policy.

    It’s not a conspiracy rant to point to something that is in fact plausible.

    Comment by M.A. — November 21, 2006 @ 4:35 pm - November 21, 2006

  30. hey lester-of-the-lower-case… you wrote: “oh you’ll get your evidence all right. subpoena power. you’ll get it in spades. all you’ll HAVE is evidence”

    How exactly will that happen now that NancyP has said no to Conyers’ investigating up the wazoo and re-re-re-revisiting the Downing St Memo?

    Come on, the Democrats have the time… because they’re not going forward on impeachment… they won’t be repealing DADT… they aren’t doing the draft… they aren’t going to force the US out of Iraq… they aren’t doing campaign finance reform… they aren’t cleaning up Congressional corruption.

    Now that they have all this time, how do you feel that the Democrat leadership is saying no to Impeachment?

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — November 21, 2006 @ 4:39 pm - November 21, 2006

  31. The only “fact” MA is that you’ve bought the Left’s biggest conspiracy lie since the grassy knoll sniper… namely, the Downing St Memo… as being true, factual, or correct.

    Rep Conyers held endless minority committee hearings on the DSM, brought in all the loons from the Left and learned that the memo was meaningless, wasn’t authentic, and at best, was wishful propaganda from the Left. Of course, in his eyes and yours, it was a ground breaking inquiry into crimes that reach to the highest levels of govt.

    But, in the end, it was partisan fodder that didn’t fire. That’s why I wrote all the conspiracy-what-if-nonsense doesn’t make you guys leaders, just good hucksters.

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — November 21, 2006 @ 4:47 pm - November 21, 2006

  32. First, the pearl-clutching is hilarious, given that your party routinely accused President Clinton of being a rapist, murderer, serial liar, etc.

    Clinton probably is a rapist. Objectively he’s also a serial liar. He just did it again recently when he said on Wallace’s show he left an anti-terrorism plan in place which is false according to Clark’s book. He also said he was trying to get bin-Laden which appears to have no basis in fact.

    I’ve never heard of any conservative journalist/commentator who said Clinton is a murderer. There are many who believe Foster did not die at Ft. Marcy Park. Since there is documented evidence that suggests that, such a belief is clearly distinguished from the “Bush lied” BS.

    There is a ton of evidence that Bush had made up his mind to go to war with Iraq no matter what; that’s where the dishonesty was — that he claimed he was trying to avoid war when all evidence now shows that he wanted a war even if it wasn’t necessary. The Downing Street Memo doesn’t prove Bush lied about WMD, but it does prove that he wanted a war with Iraq no matter what the evidence would show.

    The Downing Street memo, if it is in fact genuine, doesn’t show “he wanted a war with Iraq no matter what the evidence would show”. All it shows is he had made up his mind. That’s all. It says nothing about lack of evidence. You’re adding something in that’s not there.

    Whether he lied about WMD is almost beside the point; he wanted a war and didn’t seem to care if it was necessary, and that’s bad enough.

    You’re implying that Bush himself didn’t think it was necessary. There’s no evidence for that. The Downing Street Memo is not evidence for that. If that’s not what you’re implying, you have no point. That’s why the whole thing about lying about WMD’s IS the point. It then opens up the whole panoply of conspiracy idiocy.

    Comment by Gerald — November 21, 2006 @ 4:48 pm - November 21, 2006

  33. Michigan-Matt, while the DSM didn’t prove what some people wanted it to prove — namely that Bush lied us into war; I agree it doesn’t prove that — it is a piece of evidence that Bush was determined to go to war with Iraq no matter what. There’s plenty of other evidence to back this up, right up to the moment he kicked the U.N. inspectors out of Iraq; if Bush had any desire to avoid war with Iraq, then why would he kick the U.N. inspectors out when they were in the middle of discovering that Iraq had no WMD?

    Again, that’s not conspiracy-mongering. Conspiracy-mongering is positing an implausible connection between unconnected events, like trying to argue that Bush planned 9/11. To say that a leader wanted to go to war, and ignored evidence that might have complicated the case for war, is not implausible at all unless you think Bush is a saint.

    Comment by M.A. — November 21, 2006 @ 4:51 pm - November 21, 2006

  34. Excellent question: Now that the Dems control the legislative agenda… will they help gay rights? By passing a repeal of Clinton’s DADT? Or of his DOMA?

    Comment by Calarato — November 21, 2006 @ 4:52 pm - November 21, 2006

  35. I can’t believe there are people left or right who still enjoy debating the WMD / Joe WIlson thing. I think people have pretty much made up their mind on that stuff by now. and the republicans are gone so who are you trying to convince?

    Comment by lester — November 21, 2006 @ 5:46 pm - November 21, 2006

  36. Republicans have gone where, lester?

    You mean to say your fantasy of an all-liberal America has finally come to pass?

    My God, dear, SNAP OUT OF IT!!!

    Comment by HollywoodNeoCon — November 21, 2006 @ 6:33 pm - November 21, 2006

  37. name one thing that is going in any republicans direction

    Comment by lester — November 21, 2006 @ 6:47 pm - November 21, 2006

  38. OK, let’s assume Bush lied. If true, then the real crime in all this is that the dems were incapable of getting to the bottom of the lie and alerting everyone before the war started. They all had access to the same evidence and they had the media on their side. Their complacency, if in fact Bush bent the truth, is criminal.

    When it comes to a supreme court nomination, all we here is “checks and balance, checks and balance.” Where the hell was that oversite before the war?

    You can be certain that had Bush not gone to war, they’d be up in arms about it. In fact, no matter what Bush did, they’d have been up in arms about it. Failed to secure the ports? Up in arms. Oversecuring the borders? Up in arms. And on and on…

    I’m tiring of it all.

    Comment by Seattle Man — November 21, 2006 @ 7:12 pm - November 21, 2006

  39. Yeah, Seattle Man, no mater what W did, “they’d have been up in arms about it.” And on and on and on.

    Comment by GayPatriotWest — November 21, 2006 @ 7:15 pm - November 21, 2006

  40. You smell that, lester? That’s hubris, and you’re soaking in it.

    Comment by Fatmouse — November 21, 2006 @ 9:08 pm - November 21, 2006

  41. To say that a leader wanted to go to war, and ignored evidence that might have complicated the case for war, is not implausible at all unless you think Bush is a saint.

    Plausible, implausible, whatever. Now you’re just talking in hypotheticals. You apparently missed the entire point of this thread. Try reading it again.

    Comment by Gerald — November 21, 2006 @ 9:33 pm - November 21, 2006

  42. Nancy Pelosi Speaker elect of the House said before the election, she would insist on the most ethical and scandal free Congress in our history.
    Now that she had nominated as whip, the corrupt Murtha of abscam fame and supports Alcee Hastings as Chair of the Intellegence Committee,an impeached judge. She is a liar. LIAR. She is silent on the fate of the real estate mogel and corrupt Sen Reid as well. 2008 can’t come quick enough to take back the country from these corrupt liars.
    God Save the USA.

    Comment by Gene in Pennsylvania — November 21, 2006 @ 10:21 pm - November 21, 2006

  43. Ding, ding, ding. Gerald closes down the thread with a simple common-sense observation about the conspiracy nonsense from the Left and MS misses it.

    Nope MA, arguing Bush wanted the military to expand the WOT to Iraq and worked nat’l and intern’l events to a point where most politicians were on board before they decided it was politically prudent to get off-board… that is exactly what Dan is trying to point out. It fails the sniff test (please see gryph for a recap of recent lessons he learned the hard way on sniff tests).

    You guys on the Left can throw out the nonsense left and right, 24×7, but it’s still nonsense without substance. Like those tidbits from the DailyKos… “this war has lasted longer than WWII” (ignore the fact the deaths are less than 1/10% of WWII’s total) or arguing that CindySheehan is gaining ground on the PR anti-war front.

    Sorry, to debunk your spinnings doesn’t reduce to the postulate that I think Bush is a saint. Nice try at painting the issue into an untenable corner, but that ain’t working for you, MA. Bush is no saint… but did he deliberately expand the WOT to Iraq so that he could avenge his Daddy’s honor? What rubbish.

    BTW, M.A… a quick querry for you? Who were you before you became M.A? That syntax and sentence structure looks very very familiar.

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — November 21, 2006 @ 10:21 pm - November 21, 2006

  44. The leftists on this thread seem to think that disagreement equals dishonesty. If Bush says the situation in Iraq is improving, but you don’t agree, the worst you can say correctly about him is that he’s wrong, not that he’s lying. The push to impeach for “dishonesty” really just amounts to an attempt to criminalize disagreement. The supposed topic of this thread is a request that Bush critics actually choke up proof of dishonesty. Saying that Bush had “made up his mind” is at best, a motive for dishonesty. But you still have to actually prove he lied to make the case. I haven’t seen anybody mention the infamous State Of The Union line in this thread. I’m too lazy to search it again, but I have before. Busch went out of his way to downplay the immediate nature of the threat. As if the only time we could morally take action is right before we get nuked. Lester and MA, how do you guys square your objections with Saddam’s well-doccumented wish to get nukes and the efforts he made toward getting a quick-stand-up capability, as with the mobile labs?

    Comment by Willboyd — November 22, 2006 @ 1:48 am - November 22, 2006

  45. Willboyd, you’re wasting your time.

    While the substance of your post only serves to illustrate the intellectual honesty with which the majority of people on this board conduct themselves, calling upon the liberals here to do likewise is about as likely as al-Queda deciding to convert to Catholicism.

    Comment by HollywoodNeoCon — November 22, 2006 @ 1:20 pm - November 22, 2006

  46. The French, Russians and UN staffs were the ones who “made up their minds” – to enable Saddam’s indefinite resistance. Ever heard of the Oil for Food scandal?

    Kind of like today’s leftists who have also pretty much “made up their minds” to support the other side in the war and hate Bush no matter what (per Dan’s original point in this thread).

    Before that mentality set up – guess who else “made up their minds” that Saddam positively had to go? The Democrats in Congress. Go and google “Iraq Liberation Act of 1998″.

    Comment by Calarato — November 22, 2006 @ 1:45 pm - November 22, 2006

  47. wilyboyd- lol the “mobile labs”? the ones that didn’t exist? scott ritter asked chalabi in the late 90′s if iraq had anything like a “mobile anthrax producing lab” to evade inspectors. a few years later chalbis cousin “curveball” testifies to seeing just such a lab!! amazing. no mobile labs have ever been found anywhere on earth, much less iraq.

    again, I can’t believe there are people who actually enjoy talking about this stuffd 3 and a half years into this. all the possible directions for this dialogue are in billions of pages all over the net. if you actually wanted to know the answers you could try and find them. you’re on the internet after all. to continue to play this right wing 3 card monte in 2006 is ridiculous. the jury is very in: there was no mahammed atta meeting, no yellow cake from niger, no mobile labs, no aluminum tubes. it was a lie. everything powell said at the UN was as good as made up.

    Comment by lester — November 22, 2006 @ 10:13 pm - November 22, 2006

  48. Unfortunately, lester, leftists like yourself just finished having an aneurysm over nuclear bomb plans being placed on the Internet, claiming that it was a horrible threat to the United States that those plans were even posted.

    Of course, when it comes to those plans actually being in the hands of a dictator who had the uranium, the technology, the scientific knowledge, the money, and the wink from the UN to actually build it, no, that was no threat to the US at all.

    Right.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — November 23, 2006 @ 1:37 am - November 23, 2006

  49. are you suggesting we invade and occupy the internet?

    Comment by lester — November 23, 2006 @ 9:03 am - November 23, 2006

  50. No, lester. I believe he’s suggesting that you’re a complete tool.

    Comment by HollywoodNeoCon — November 23, 2006 @ 11:48 am - November 23, 2006

  51. This is an excellent blog post and I agree. I think it’s high time that the Democrats put their money where their mouth is and fess up with the “supposed” evidence that proves a lie.

    If the President lied, then they all lied. They all made the same decision based on the same information. No one is responsible for their vote except the individual who cast said vote.

    I say to you now, this will never happen. As the Dems attempt this charade, the truth will reveal itself and they will once again have egg on their face.

    My hope is that they perform this behavior in front of all the media, for the world to see.

    Comment by Scooter — November 26, 2006 @ 7:13 pm - November 26, 2006

  52. That’s right, Anon1. Don’t let the facts stop you. Don’t you ever let them get in your way! LOL

    You could follow your own advice, and re-read Bush’s speech, if you care about this subject so much and presume to pontificate on it. But nobody here expects you to. We know that would be asking way too much of you.

    Comment by commentor — November 27, 2006 @ 8:28 am - November 27, 2006

  53. I can’t believe anon1 continues to function in a reality he refuses to accept.

    Considering how angry this little boy seems to be, I can’t imagine how the hell he’s able to get out of bed in the morning.

    Comment by HollywoodNeoCon — November 27, 2006 @ 10:43 am - November 27, 2006

  54. What you people need is more than two political parties. You’re throwing around “left” and “right”, “Democrat” and “Republican”, “liberal” and “conservative” as though the world were made of only two poles of thought, as though getting these labels to stick to your opponent proves you’re right. It’s ridiculous, lazy and unproductive, and reduces your arguments to rehashing old slogans of your own particular tribe affiliation.

    What I found annoying about Bush’s handling of Iraq was that the reasons for invading kept changing; first it was WMDs (I remember watching Colin Powell presenting the “evidence”), then it wasn’t. Then it was links between Iraq and Al Qaeda, then it wasn’t. Then it was to save Iraq from a cruel dictator, and that seems to be the last explanation. But in a world full of cruel dictators, why Iraq in particular? Why the only secular country in that area? Since the “liberation”, gay people there have had a much tougher time of it, sharia law seems imminent, and with that comes a kind of conservatism that I think even the most far right American conservative would find creepy. Or perhaps not.

    As for torture, the tricky thing about waterboarding and such is that under ideal conditions it may be monitored carefully, etc, but if that kind of thing becomes a regular habit, instead of something reserved for extreme cases (as things do when they are made an acceptable norm), then this will be done more often, and under less-than-ideal, stressful conditions by people under a lot of pressure to produce results, and will inevitably result in more extreme methods and abuse of people who genuinely know nothing. The “interrogation professionals” are only human, after all. Get used to driving 80mph, and 100mph is pretty easy to slip into.

    Comment by Veltis — November 27, 2006 @ 7:10 pm - November 27, 2006

  55. From wikipedia:
    In 1998, U.S. President Bill Clinton expressed concerns about Iraq’s failure to disarm, noting that he believed the country would give its weapons of mass destruction to other countries. Clinton also stated his belief that Saddam Hussein would eventually use these weapons – it was “only a matter of time.” On September 29, 1998, the United States Congress passed the Iraq Liberation Act, which states that the U.S. intends to remove Saddam Hussein from office and replace the government with a democratic institution. The Iraq Liberation Act was signed by President Clinton on October 31, 1998. On the same day, Iraq announced it would no longer cooperate with United Nations weapons inspectors.

    Boy Cheney/Rove had a lot of power during the Clinton administration!

    That the press doesn’t mention these other democrat examples of hypocrisy is mind-boggling:

    “One way or the other, we are determined to deny Iraq the capacity to
    develop weapons of mass destruction and the missiles to deliver them.
    That is our bottom line.”
    – President Clinton, Feb. 4, 1998

    “If Saddam rejects peace and we have to use force, our purpose is
    clear. We want to seriously diminish the threat posed by Iraq’s weapons of
    mass destruction program.”
    – President Clinton, Feb. 17, 1998

    “Iraq is a long way from [the USA], but what happens there matters a
    great deal here. For the risks that the leaders of a rogue state will use
    nuclear, chemical or biological weapons against us or our allies is the
    greatest security threat we face.”
    – Madeline Albright, Feb 18, 1998

    “He will use those weapons of mass destruction again, as he has ten
    times since 1983.” – Sandy Berger, Clinton National Security Adviser, Feb, 18, 1998

    “[W]e urge you, after consulting with Congress, and consistent with
    the U.S. Constitution and laws, to take necessary actions (including, if
    appropriate, air and missile strikes on suspect Iraqi sites) to respond
    effectively to the threat posed by Iraq’s refusal to end its weapons of mass
    destruction programs.”
    – Letter to President Clinton, signed by Sens. Carl Levin,
    Tom Daschle, John Kerry, and others Oct. 9, 1998

    “Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the development of weapons of
    mass destruction technology which is a threat to countries in the region
    and he has made a mockery of the weapons inspection process.”
    – Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D, CA), Dec. 16, 1998

    “Hussein has … chosen to spend his money on building weapons of
    mass destruction and palaces for his cronies.”
    – Madeline Albright, Clinton Secretary of State, Nov. 10, 1999

    Comment by Ghost — November 28, 2006 @ 8:26 pm - November 28, 2006

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