Thursday, May 25, 2006

Sometimes You Gotta Be a Jerk

If the fundamental philosophy of conservatism is "sometimes you gotta be a jerk", and the fundamental philosophy of liberalism is "don't be a jerk!", then sometimes I'm a conservative. For instance, when it comes to confronting the Imperial Presidency, there should be one simple rule for Senate Democrats: ALWAYS be a jerk. Period. The administration nominates anyone to the right of Ed Asner to run the CIA? Then in this political climate, vote no. It's simple.

So while in normal times General Hayden might be a good choice, in these times, with fascism looming, he's not. He ran the NSA's domestic surveillance program, so we vote no. It's just so fucking simple.

Yet our party's leaders don't understand it -- not even Jay Rockefeller, who disappointed me on the Alito filibuster but since then has seemed to be on board.

Glenn Greenwald wrote about it. Please read.


Anonymous said...

Gutless wonders. I think the "Almost ex-Democrat" on the SoonerThought Podcast said it best on this topic...

Alan said...

These last few nom votes have been little more than democrat CYA. When are you going to realize that the Senate is little better than a vote swapping club?

xristim said...

It is a tenet of the working rules that govern the sometimes uneasy relationship between Congress and the White House that a President should be allowed to surround himself with those he feels share his views and with whom he feels he can work effectively.

As I've said before, many Democrats suffer from "terminal good manners". There is an obvious implied proviso to the tenet which they appear to have overlooked. Where the President has repeatedly acted in bad faith, has lied or "been mistaken" in ways which only willful ignorance could explain, has shown that loyalty to party exceeds loyalty to nation, and that loyalty to class takes precedence over all, it is madness to rubber-stamp "Approved" on his selected playmates.

How likely is it that a soul mired in corruption is going to choose as its bosom companion anyone steeped in virtue?

He may sport four stars now, but Hayden must have spent years snapping to attention, saluting, and following orders without question. I don't think that's a habit easily kicked.

Independent, my skinny ass!

Bravo to the Democrats who refused to vote to confirm! Shame on the others. All of them.

lucretia said...

We know the current crop of thugs in the W.H. use "framing" to hook a more and more easily led public. They always start strong accusatory yelling at Dems on the TV news who speak out to convey, and they do each time, that the Dems are not cooperating in perilous times when "we are at war",holding up important legislation for the American people etc. Notice they always accuse the Dems of what they are openly doing themselves, and they get away with it. Why? What's wrong with the public? Well, a lot apparently.

Question Theresites2: "anyone to the right of Ed Asner to run the CIA"--Ed Asner is very left, and remains that way which to me is admirable. "To the right of" should be someone center, or center right, don't you think? Maybe I misunderstand?

Anonymous said...

Lucretia: Ah, my point is that the Dems don't seem to understand how to make waves -- both unwilling to, and don't even know how to. They should be highlighting this administration's unconstitutional (and fundamentally unamerican) claims of executive privilege by demanding someone with a demonstrated commitment to civil rights to head the CIA -- not merely someone "acceptable" but someone who represents a capitulation. Sure, Bush won't do it -- but so what? One of our strongest arguments is that we're out of power, so let's force them to slap us down publicly and repeatedly. It only makes them look unilateral, power-hungry, unAmerican.

In other words, centrists (if nominated by Bush without our consent) aren't even OK for certain positions, like CIA chief. If they don't come to us and ask us for our recommendation -- in which case we suggest a centrist -- then we vote no. Period.

lucretia said...

I do understand your point about the necessity to make waves. But the Right's methodology got a hold of the country, and probably half the voters react like Pavlov's dog to it. The Dems are well aware.

I'm not disputing your point the Dems need to do something. I was bringing out the problem. That's all.

I would like though to shake all of them for their caution. I think their plan from the first has been to wait for the Right to hang itself, and then win the mid-terms, get the House at least back and go forward. We've waited so long it might work since we have only until Nov.

I don't agree with their 'cautious' plan at all. I think they should have hit hard in a clever way, not the loud, thuggish, bully way like the facists. Sure they would be taking a chance but eventually they would get through. What they know and we liberals have to understand once and for all is that the Right can win future elections simply based on the 'safety' card. It matters more to the families and women in the heartland especially, but also to many at east and west coasts too. Many Americans have displayed an amazing amount of cowardice since 9/11. This has certainly been noted on blogs and of course by other nations citizens. When the Brits were hit by the attack on the subway, the difference between their reaction and ours was remarkable.

It was not values or Iraq war itself that lost us the election in 2004. It's the public's conception that Bush and the Republicans can keep us 'safe'.

Also, what about my question on Ed Asner? He's too great a liberal leftist to put Bush to his right!

lucretia said...
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