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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. 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

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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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