Democrats Combat Surge With Propaganda Campaign

Just a few days, other bloggers (Captain Ed) and I speculated on the ramifications on Democrat surrender strategies of the increasingly obvious improvements in Iraq since the surge began.  Ever the WaPo worried about how the Dems would deal. Now we know: propaganda.

Following the phony story that Gen. Pace would urge the President to cut troops in Iraq by half, the Red Crescent, today, released a report that a record number of Iraqis have fled their homes in fear of their lives since the surge began.

"Does this surge have anything to do with it? We don't know," said Saeed Haqi, head of the Iraqi Red Crescent - the local partner organization of the International Committee of the Red Cross. "But they're leaving because of the security situation in general." (source)

Yesterday, the AP ran a story based solely on its own "compilations" headlined: "Iraq Body Count Running at Double Pace."  The yellow story cites no authority other than the AP itself.  But the AP's lack of credible sources doesn't prevent it from demanding a higher standard from anyone who challenges its assertions:

Brig. Gen. Richard Sherlock, deputy director for operational planning for the Pentagon's Joint Chiefs of Staff, said violence in Iraq "has continued to decline and is at the lowest level since June 2006."

He offered no statistics to back his claim.

What brazenness.  The big media, the "drive-bys" as Rush Limbaugh calls them, are different agencies of the same body, like Sinn Féin is to the IRA.  CNN reporters take LOAs to run Democrat campaign.   Recently, MSNBC checked out 143 reporters, discovering that 125 had donated cash to Democrats or liberal political organizations.  Only 16 reporters gave to Republicans.  Clearly, the DNC has provided the MSM careful instructions on reporting on Iraq. Bastards.

Pace Pullout Talk Pack of Lies

For a couple of days, the wingnuts have been ecstatic over a story that Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Peter Pace would tell President Bush to cut Iraqi troop strength in half.  I first heard the story on CBS Radio News Friday morning on my way to work.  The LA Times, quoting anonymous Pentagon and Administration officials, printed the the story in its Friday edition. But the story was a fabrication, likely designed to quell the growing support for the war.  Late Friday, Pace denied (FoxNews) the report.

The original LA Times story went to explain to readers that Pace's recommendation would be devastating to Bush, forcing him to pull out of Iraq.  Clearly, Julian Barnes and Peter Spiegel, the authors, made up much of the story or failed to obtain corroboration from independent, reliable sources.

My beef is with the media's response to Pace's denial of the story's authenticity.  Perhaps LA Times, the AP, and CBS News ran retractions or corrects.  If they did, the corrections are well hidden.  My Googling found that only Fox News (linked above) and ReutersYahoo! News carried the Reuters retraction, but not in their Top News sections.  Sadly, al Jazeera proves more honest than the AP, LA Times, Washington Post, ABC, MSNBC, and CBS, carrying the retraction in English.  Gateway Pundit, too, noticed the lack of retractions.

It amazes me that people, myself included, even bother to look to the MSM for information.  Then, again, we scan the World News while in line at the grocery store.   

Democrats Changing Tune on Iraq/Pullout

It started in July with polls showing Americans were increasingly supportive of the war in Iraq. Then, the President's approval rating began to climb. Then Congress's approval rating fell to an all-time low. In between, the odd Democrat Congressman or analyst returned from Iraq saying good things, not bad, about the effect of the troop surge. With thanks to the California Conservative and Captain Ed for finding this story, we find that the Washington Post is reporting that the Democrats are forced to shift their policy on Iraq because of the undeniable success of the surge.

Remember, the Democrats tried every trick in the book to stop the surge. As CC points out, John Murtha launched the "slow bleed" strategy designed to let American's die in Iraq until there weren't enough left to fight. Now, we read this:

Rep. Jerry McNerney (D-Calif.), who made waves when he returned from Iraq by saying he was willing to be more flexible on troop withdrawal timelines, issued a statement to constituents "setting the record straight."

"I am firmly in favor of withdrawing troops on a timeline that includes both a definite start date and a definite end date," he wrote on his Web site.

But in an interview yesterday, McNerney made clear his views have shifted since returning from Iraq. He said Democrats should be willing to negotiate with the generals in Iraq over just how much more time they might need. And, he said, Democrats should move beyond their confrontational approach, away from tough-minded, partisan withdrawal resolutions, to be more conciliatory with Republicans who might also be looking for a way out of the war.

"We should sit down with Republicans, see what would be acceptable to them to end the war and present it to the president, start negotiating from the beginning," he said, adding, "I don't know what the [Democratic] leadership is thinking. Sometimes they've done things that are beyond me."

For a Democrat leadership that has been unable, to this point, to find its voice, a plan, or a legislative win, developing an effective Iraq policy could prove a daunting task.

The Democrats have passed a minimum wage hike and signed off on Republic measures, including FISA, warrantless wire taps, and budgets. Well, they did manage to tack a lot of pork onto the budget, but that's no surprise. Republicans got theirs as well.

While doing nothing, Pelosi and Reid seem to have alienated as many Democrats as Republicans. The stolen vote fiasco in the session's waning moments involved Democrat leaders strong-arming five freshmen Democrats into changing their vote after the vote had been complete five, and other moderate Democrats, won't soon forget their shabby treatment.

So what could the Democrat strategy possibly be? We're with the President? Stay the course? If one surge was good, two are better? Perhaps they will pass a non-binding resolution rescinding their non-binding resolutions that demanded the President scuttle the surge. Could saying "we were wrong" hurt them? Help them?

I don't think this Democrat Congress is fatally wounded, but they better get a trauma helicopter instead of an ambulance. In their favor is a Republican President who has spent two years frittering away a large base of support. While he's turned those numbers around to a degree, he's a long way from 50-50 in the favorability department. And another set-back in Iraq would doom him now and in the history books. Another 2-3 months of decreasing US combat casualties will help, as will a stable Iraqi government and a Wall Street rally. Should the President's popularity surge, the Democrats will be sunk.

For the Presidential election, the consequences are even higher. All three top candidates have pushed the immediate surrender message since they stepped into the ring. In their recent"debate," they argued over who was against the war first. While the three of them might allow each other to flip quietly, rest assured the GOP field will not. At the same time, if the Democrat candidate do flip on the war, they will lose the base that holds about 80% of potential Democrat donations. That's enough money for the wingnuts to run a serious 3rd candidate who would take away exclusively from the Democrats.

For the first time in a long time, it feels like the good guys are winning--at home and abroad.

 Part of the Beltway Traffic Jam

Update--Link Corrected:  An amazing story and analysis on Captain's Quarters.  There are reports that presumed Sunni insurgent leader, Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri,  will join Maliki's government in Iraq.   As Ed points out, this move would effectively end the Iraq War.  Unless, of course, Iran jumps in with both feet, which is an increasing possibility.    Still, if this happens, the Democrats  will have a very hard time explaining what happened--and how they were so miserably wrong.  Later, Bush officials will have to explain why it took them two and a half years to go back on the offensive.  Neither question will be easy to answer.

Clinton on Iraq: Victory is Not an Option

St. Louis, MO--Campaiging in Mooseknuckles, MO, today, Democrat Hillary Clinton gave supporters her strongest argument to date for an immediate, unconditional pull-out from Iraq. "You read the news," she shrilled to the largely silent crowd.  "You read the reports the coming out of Iraq.  You know what's happened during George Bush's war!"

The audience's polite but blank silence indicated that they didn't.

"You have seen Senator Durbin and several Brookings Institute scholars report from the field that the surge is pushing back the insurgents."

She raised her right hand to quell the nascent cheers of the crowd.  Wrong queue.

"If we don't begin a complete withdrawal immediately," Clinton yelled, "this war could be over!  If America wins this war, you--you invisible people--you lose,  because the Republicans will continue to keep all of you invisible."

The audience seemed confused, unsure whether Clinton's "invisible" line was an applause queue or not.  But they smiled politely and fanned themselves with the carbon-neutral programs. 

Time to Take Down Iran

I was lying in the bathtub after a rare Sunday afternoon football practice when the Big Red post-game show was interrupted:

We interrupt this program for a CBS Radio News special report. 

I'm Morton Dean.  The US State Department has announced that a group of students under control of the Ayatollah Khomeini of Iran have siezed the American Embassy in Tehran, taking more than 100 Americans hostage.

or something like that.

It was November 4, 1979.  The action, as much as anything else, gave us Ronald Reagan for 8 years. 

But those of who lived through Jimmy Carter's inept management of the crisis have longed for the end to the Islamic regime in Iran.  We've studied the vast chasm of philosophy between the Iran's ruling despots and the Iranian people.  We know that Iran could America's greatest ally in the Southwest Asia. 

When we hear that Iran is lobbing shells into Kurdish Iraq, we want our government to declare war on Iran to liberate her people.

My God, I miss Reagan.

Where I stand on Iraq

I stand for total victory in Iraq.

Background

Some say that I blindly support President Bush and everything he does. I do not. Nor do I publicly lambaste his missteps the way others, like Peggy Noonan, do. This blog, I hope, will explain to my readers and friends how I can hold several seemingly incongruous positions on Bush and the War.

  • The United States, the free world, in fact, was justified in invading Iraq and overthrowing Saddam
  • The war in Iraq was not successful in its early days despite the perception of a rout
  • The administration's greatest failure was kowtowing to the left
  • The symptom of that kowtowing was establishing a defensive posture instead of continuing the attack
  • Donald Rumsfeld failed the President by refusing to return to an offensive strategy
  • The key to victory is ruthless aggression
  • Republicans should limit criticism of Bush to recommendations that will achieve victory

Justification

Following 9/11, President Bush told Peggy Noonan in a private meeting that every night he goes to bed expecting to be woken and told that Saddam has unleashed a WMD in America. I don't believe he was lying or exaggerating to her. Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton cited the same intelligence that kept Bush awake at night. In her support for the war, Hillary Clinton was unequivocal: Saddam is a threat to his neighbors and, through terrorists, to the United States directly. Having experienced terrorism's capabilities first hand, President Bush had no choice but to take America to war. He also had no choice but to win quickly.

Early Flaws in Iraq

The military, the White House, Congress, the press, and the people told themselves that first 100 days of the war were an overwhelming success. But on the night that the US Army overran the last of Saddam's palaces in Baghdad, I saw the seeds of the next four years planted. I was on the phone with my, then, girlfriend watching young Iraqi men, some in uniform, walking and laughing through Baghdad's streets even as US troops took hot showers in Saddam's palace. I said to her, "I know this sounds cold, but we should be shooting those people, not letting them walk away. We will fight them again."

That was April, 2003. I was right as much as I wish I'd been wrong. (I think I blogged about it, but a back-up problem in 2005 lost a lot of files from that period.)

War is for the ruthless. Not the cruel or criminal, but ruthless. Once a government commits to war, once an ounce of American blood spills in war, the President is obliged to achieve unconditional surrender of the enemy, whether that enemy is a traditional state or shadowy terror group. In Iraq, America's hatred of war – a flaw – drove us to declare victory ("mission accomplished") and go home. But in May 2003, the job was only half done. There was still the shadowy terrorist group to deal with.

Instead of dealing with the terrorists and thugs head on, the Pentagon and the White House succumbed to liberal pressure to back off quickly. We stopped shooting long before the enemy ever did. By declaring victory too soon, we prolonged the war by at least 2 years, in my opinion. I expected that opposition to a new government would end in 2005.

Kowtowing to the Left

The early flaw, then, was being kindhearted to our own detriment that that of the Iraqi people. The left in America and elsewhere was all for this. They wanted us to get our heads handed back on a platter, but their public mantra was to be kind to everyone so that everyone will like us. All that huggie, smarmy crap they feed us every time an enemy threatens to kill us all. "Just try to understand where they're coming from."

The President and the Pentagon had reservations about this, I'm sure. But they didn't want to be seen as killers. They hoped to extend the positive press by becoming every Iraqi's buddy. The Pentagon flooded the media with photos of dirty, tired soldiers accepting freshly picked dandelions from smiling Iraqi children. It made me feel good, too. I know the kinds of people who were on the ground, and they are decent, loving human beings doing a horrible job. But the images were deceiving.

Going on the Defensive

As we know now, as some of us feared then, the monster was licking his wounds and steeling his resolve to fight back. He had bent, not broken. We, on the other hand, were like the boxer who, after four rounds of scoring with many landed blows, decides to skip and hop and put on a show for the audience rather than putting his opponent on the canvas and hitting the shower. We danced and aped for the crowd, but the challenger was finished.

Another analogy is the hated and dangerous "prevent defense" in football. This a horrible strategy in which a team with a lead concedes the entire field, save for their own end zone. The Rams tried this in the Super Bowl against the New England Patriots. The Pats covered 70 yards in half a minute and kicked the winning field goal as time ran out.

The defensive strategy got a lot of good people killed and wounded.

Rumsfeld's Follies

By June of 2005, it was clear that the strategy of waiting for the enemy's bullets to run out was failing. Bush had just won re-election. He controlled Congress. The press were afraid to mount a charge against him, as his poll numbers rose after the election. The time was ripe for a surge. The left would have balked at throwing in another 50,000 or 100,000 troops, but Bush could easily have ignored the complaints.

Rumsfeld, though, is a very proud man. The defensive hunker was either his idea or one he publicly endorsed. Going back on offense meant admitting that he'd made a mistake when he put on the prevent defense in June 2003. For more than a year, Donald Rumsfeld held George Bush prisoner in a failed strategy. Bush should have fired him after the 2004 election, but one of Bush's strengths and flaws his fierce loyalty to those loyal to him. Rumsfeld stood by Bush, and Bush would do the same for Rummy. After losing both houses of Congress, though, even Bush had had enough. He realized that Rumsfeld's loyalty ended where Rumsfeld's pride began.

Back on the Offensive

Unlike the Rams in 2002, Bush had time left on the clock—two years, in fact. After firing his defensive coordinator, Rumsfeld, he let the new SECDEF describe a fairly bold (but not bold enough) tactic: The Troop Surge.

The left screamed bloody murder over this. Democrats claimed a mandate to get out of Iraq immediately (which wasn't true), and here was Bush doing the opposite. Again, if liberals are angry, you're doing something right.

The surge is working. Liberals like Dick Durbin and Michael O'Hanlon have admitted that the surge is working, that things are getting better in Iraq, and that the media and other liberals are lying to the American people about it.

Of course, things are getting better. We're on offense. If Bush remembers to attack until the final buzzer, he will walk away with total victory. It will have taken too long and cost too many lives, but it will be victory nonetheless.

Republican Disloyalty

Which is why Republicans must knock off the "Republicans hate Bush, too" talk and focus on victory, on outcomes. Politically, vilifying a Republican President whom we've vocally supported in two elections is really, really stupid. The mistakes he made were made during his first term, and we all saw the writing on the wall in April 2003. The Republicans who now claim to "hate" Bush show their own selfish stupidity with the comment. What they hate is that the GOP lost Congress, and Bush is the easiest person to blame. Do they look in the mirror? Did they write letters to the editor every day for three years decrying the unbalanced, anti-American spin in the news? Did they have the courage to tell their friends, "We should have killed more of them when the war started instead of claiming 'Mission Accomplished' and popping champagne?" No. They watched their 401Ks return to pre-9/11 numbers and ignored everything they could about politics.

And I'm one of them. Like most of the right, I left the President blowing in the wind for a couple of years. I worried about my life and let him deal with his.

We all let him down, the same way Rummy did. We told him everything was okay when it wasn't—Peggy Noonan included. So before you go claiming to "hate" Bush, think about this: if you had reservations about your neighbor painting his siding so close to the Webber Kettle, does that mean you don't try to rescue his kids when the house catches fire? Your neighbors have sons and daughters and spouses and daddies and mommies in harm's way. When the war was "popular," you offered philosophical reasons for your "reservations," but, by and large, you enjoyed the American prestige. Now the house is on fire, and you sit smugly in your living room, watching it burn, gratified that you can now say, "I told you so."

Keep your mouth shut. Remind us when this is all over that you had "reservations." No, you didn't shout from the rooftops, "Don't do it." You didn't write long, logical essays about why Saddam is not a threat. You simply kept silent reservations and waved your six-inch by four-inch American flag some American Legionnaire handed you at the Support the Troops rally. Your President is now the only man alive who can bring them home victorious. Hating him might have to wait.

Iranians in Iraq

Apparently, an Iranian army special forces unit is in Iraq training Shiite militias on the more effective methods of killing Americans. You'll be pleased to know that the US is "tracking" them. My question is, Why aren't we killing them? The Kurds are, according this story at Gateway Pundit.

They are enemy combatants in an American occupation zone. We need answer to no one for eliminating this problem.

This points to my whole problem with the way the Bush administration has handled Iraq. The cries and moans of the left will rise up to the heavens no matter what Bush does. Yet Bush has continued to take half measures, hoping to quell the left's discontent and outrage. He should do what is right with total disregard for what the left says.

Since Saddam's capture, the surge is the only major operation Bush has authorized over the objections of the left, and it has been a success. As I've written until I'm blue in the fingers, offense is the only thing that works in war. You are either attacking or being attacked. You are either advancing or retreating. We learned in Korea and Viet Nam that holding ground means losing.

Fight, W; fight. Take it to them. Make them look for places to hide.

Update: Captain Ed has more on this story, including this observation:

Their appearance in Baghdad is not coincidental to the rise in attacks from Shi'ite extremists. The adminstration will explicitly accuse the IRG of fomenting those attacks through logistics and and command, and the visit from Teheran's finest will certainly help make that case.

I get the feeling this story has legs.

Haditha Marines Vindicated

The three Marines who were charged and cleared of murdering civilians in Iraq became the poster children for Jack Murtha's attempts to destroy the U.S. Marine Corps. (I have no doubt that Murtha drank of Ho Chi Minh's kool-aid in Viet Nam.) Murtha's lies, smears, libels, and slanders launched an anti-American industry that just held its Yearly Kos nightmare in Chicago. The Marines libeled by Murtha and others are free, now. They have every right to receive compensation for the Murtha's criminal lies. One Marine's parents want Murtha censured. I want him chained to the bumper of a 1967 Chevy pickup and dragged through the streets of Atlanta for 24 hours. If he survives, bully for him.

What does Murtha have to say for himself? Nothing. He's a coward

BTW, I hate Jack Murtha. He is such a wuss. He accepts e-mail ONLY from people in his district. Pure loser. How many of his comrades did he sell out to the NVA or VC to get out of Viet Nam alive? If he's willing to sell out his country now, you know he was willing to sell out a few Marines then.

Crotchety Old Bastard puts it best:

But I will save the most brutal judgment for another “Marine”.Jack Murtha is hereby no longer a Marine. He is the lowest form of a communist sympathizing, piece of shit to ever embarrass the uniform!>

I would have brought his fat, useless carcass before a Court Martial for condemning Marines with no evidence. Like every other American, and maybe even more so, a Marine is innocent until proven guilty you useless sack of bat guano!

The Left's Foreign Policy

The left's foreign policy is both domestic and global. John Hawkins, in Right Wing News's Q&A, responds to a question posed by RtWingNutCase, to wit: should the US pull out of Iraq prematurely, would the left turn its activism toward influencing a withdrawal from Afghanistan?

Hawkins correctly says, "Yes," but he stops short of speculating on motives. I won't.

The left's motive in withdrawing from the world is to weaken America and the West. The left hates Western Civilization the way Hitler hated Jews, the way the Cromwell hated Irish Catholics. They give not a hoot for American soldiers' lives nor for the tax dollars spent on the war. They care nothing for Iraqis whom they claim suffer more harshly today than under Saddam. They really don't care which party controls the White House or Congress, save for one compelling distinction: the Democrats have shown an obsequious willingness to acquiesce to leftist demands to weaken American while the GOP resists such suicidal tendancies.

In a sense, no voting bloc typifies the "lesser of two evils" approach to voting more completely than American leftists. They prefer a Soviet style choice of non-competing candidate from the same state-owned party. Knowing that a string of military failures would accelerate the fall of the United States and the decline of Western civilization, democracy, and capitalism, the left would neuter America's ability to both project strength abroad and to defend itself against outside invaders. The left, after all, supports the right of Mexican criminals to parasitically suck the wealthy teat of American capitalism. Our surplus is not ours, they believe, but the world's. From each according to his ability, to each according to his sloth-like expectations.

Leftism, then, is a proclamation that laziness and sloth are not rights but duties. Hard work and surplus are not virtues but crimes. Global warming, universal health care, and military incapacitation are all means to the end of making the work ethic a social sin.

I can conclude only that Buckley's foreword to God and Man at Yale was something of a universal truth: the battle between individualism and collectivism is the same as the battle between good and evil, between God and Satan, only fought on a different plane.

Given that stark contrast, do you see how much rides on every little battle with the other side?

Similar Posts: Beth at MVRWC points out that the left's tactics also derive from the KGB.

Bush's Popularity Linked to War's

Over the past two or three weeks, several polls have shown increased support for the war in Iraq.  Now, we see that President Bush's poll numbers are up.

  • AP/IPSOS poll shows Bush's favorability up to 31 percent in July from 28 in June
  • CBS/NYT found that 42 percent now consider the war in Iraq "the right thing to do"

FoxNews.com a longer list of the small victories President Bush and the Pentagon have achieved in Iraq and with the public.  It's must reading, because it drives home the breadth and the depth of this growing support.  Even Sen. Dick Durbin admits things in Baghdad are getting better.Two things to take away from this:Bush and the war are inexorably linked:  Since we first went into Iraq in 2003, Bush's success as a president has been linked to one outcome:  the war.  When all was well, his numbers went up.  When he allowed the Pentagon to adopt a hunker down strategy, public perception was that we were losing.  Now that we're back on the offensive and the news is improving, so Bush's numbers.  There is a lag, but Bush's numbers follow the war's numbers.People always assume the aggressor is winning: I've made this point before, but it's very important. Watch a boxing match and count the number of times the ring-side expert mentions "the aggressor" or "one the offensive."  That's because boxing judges award points for scoring punches, not for dancing and dodging.  Most of the time, the guy dodging ends up getting smacked.  The aggressor usually wins.  Sure, he can walk into a right hand and go down, but usually the aggressor wins.   Because of this perception, when people hear the US is on the offense in Iraq, they perceive the US is winning.Stay on the offensive, Mr. President.  Don't let generals or Secretaries of Defense tell you it's time to hunker down in the green zone.  Listen to generals who've won wars, like Patton:  "When in doubt, attack."  If the surge continues, if we continue to kill more of theirs than they kill of ours, if we take Sean Connery's line from "The Untouchables*," we will win in Iraq and in the minds of Americans.  If we hunker down, we might win in Iraq, but you'll never convince the people.  If we pull out, you'll go down in history as a loser.


“If they come at you with a knife you use a gun on them, if they put one of ours in the hospital we put one of theirs in the morgue.” 

Mullah Cirac Leads Me To A Great Post

Someone calling himself Mullah Cirac posted a comment to an earlier post on the growing popularity of the war in Iraq. I posted a long reply to the Mullah. Then I checked my comments meta to see if he left legit e-mail and website. I don't know about the e-mail, but web url he claims as his belongs to a girl from Texas who might be able to kick Cirac's unholy ass from Mecca to Odessa. AniMEL writes about "Nazi America." When I saw the title and started reading, I expected that the mullah had led me to a post that would "prove" America is the great Satan for killing and incarcerating fine young terrorists. But the post goes in a different direction, and it goes there under the pen of a talented story teller. If you read nothing else today, read AniMEL's Nazi America. She's obviously the kind of American woman I wrote about in my reply to Mullah Cirac.

***UPDATE*** DOH! I was looking at the wrong comment. Mel, of aniMEL fame, responded reasonably to one of my unreasonable tirades. I thought the url on her comment was the url on Mullah Cirac's. Everything else I wrote above, though, landed squarely on the nail's head.

War Popularity Continues to Grow

The second poll in a week--this one by USAToday/Gallup--shows that support for the war in Iraq is growing. The latest poll shows that public perception of America's success has increased substantially in the past month. The numbers coincide with the increasing effectiveness of the surge.

In the latest USA TODAY/Gallup Poll, taken Friday through Sunday, the proportion of those who said the additional troops are "making the situation better" rose to 31% from 22% a month ago. Those who said it was "not making much difference" dropped to 41% from 51%.

I blogged about a similar NYTimes/CBS poll released quietly on July 23 showed a 6 percentage point increase in public support. (NYTimes buries the story in its blog section, while CBS.com didn't mention it.)

Having two polls in two weeks show the same trend is significant, as the second poll validates the first. The increasing popularity also demonstrates that the MSM aren't working hard enough at recuiting losers. Ed Morrissey downplays the numbers believing the upside is tempered by a majority wanting a complete withdrawal by April.

Perhaps. But I'd like to pull out by April, too--with total victory in hand. I think some portion of those who want the pullout want victory, too. I'm not sure how pullout numbers would look if the question were, "Do you support or oppose a complete military withdrawal even if it means defeat for the US and genocide in Iraq?"

More interesting to me is why now? We know that July was the least lethal month for our folks in quite a while. I think there's more, though.

Americans, I've noticed, pull back their support when those out front seem overzealous. I think we get suspicious, like when a salesman continues to sell the product after you've said, "Yes." We wonder if maybe there's more to the movement than meets the eye--maybe a hidden agenda among the leaders that's concealed from the rank and file.

Whatever the reason, the numbers are positive. I hope the Pentagon keeps the pressure on the terrorists. As I mentioned after the NYTimes/CBS poll, Americans love a winner, they like the aggressor, we want to take it to them instead of waiting for them to bring it to us.

For those in Iraq, keep up the great fight. God bless you and noble mission.

YearlyKos Review

The YearlyKos could be the last hurrah of this new hard left, the way Woodstock was the final note of the song of the Sixties. YearlyKos is a get-together of hard left bloggers organized by DailyKos founder Markos Moulitsas. DailyKos claimed, perhaps rightly, responsibility for the Democrat Congressional victory in 2006--much the way Hammas might claim victory for blowing up an Israeli schoolhouse.

The Kos and Democratic Underground people who filled attendee list are the kind of folks who giggle at Dick Cheney's heart problems, wish al Qaeda victory in its war against the West, and popped bottles of bubbly upon hearing of Chief Justice Roberts' seizure. They gloat with a parent's satisfaction at a child's first words when news of US military deaths hits the airwaves, and they blush with post-coital splendor when an SUV kills pedestrians. They are, in short, what is left clinging to the toilet bowl after three flushes.

The Democrat candidates for president strode into their den on Saturday last to beg for more good press on the blogs and to beg for more money. These candidates--Clinton, Obama, Edwards, and the rest--sucked up to people barely fit to be called people.

But actions speak louder than words. The Kos folk most earnestly want America to lose the war on terror, beginning in Iraq, and ending, presumably, in Wichita, Kansas. They have no idea what life is like in an Islamic dictatorship, but they are certain it's preferable to life in these United States where upper middle classers kills spotted owls with emissions from their 4X4 vehicles. Kos (used generically for the ilk) expected the Democrat Congress to cut off military funding and to impeach President Bush. The actions, though, of this Congress have fallen well short of that goal. Instead, the Democrat 110th Congress behaves legislatively much like the Republican 109th. Much talk, little action, and passing whatever Bush asks for.

This explains why Hillary Clinton was booed more than she was cheered. It explains why Cindy Sheehan is running against Nancy Pelosi. UPDATE: Michelle Malkin says Ms. Clinton received more cheers than boos. I didn't hear it, so I'll go with Michelle.

Ed Morrissey summarizes the Congress well:

When push comes to shove, especially on war-related issues, the Democrats have failed almost every time to fulfill their campaign promises. The FISA legislation should enrage the Democratic base. The action by Congress this weekend essentially ratifies the NSA's warrantless wiretap program. After its exposure in December 2005, the DKos community and the rest of the Left that propelled the Democrats to power insisted that the TSP was one of the leading examples of the Bush administration's attack on freedom and liberty. The Senate promised to hold investigations into its operation and to even perhaps impeach George Bush for violating the Constitution.

The Democrats, then, have proven that their word is no good. As Morrissey later explains, the Democrat candidates in 2006 sold a bill of goods to the hard left, leaving their supporters with empty hopes and empty wallets. (Then again, that's what the Democrat party has done to the people since Roosevelt first seized power.) Imagine the outcry had Newt Gingrich in January 1995 declared the Contract with America too difficult to carry out. The MSM would have had the Republicans throats, and the GOP would have overwhelming lost power a decade earlier than it did.

The last time the hard left influenced an election was 1974. Richard Nixon was already gone, and the Democrats who entered Congress in 1975 went about the business of destroying the economy, eviscerating the military, and giving the country a case of malaise. While the YearlyKos participants were hoping that Nancy Pelosi's party would do the same this time, the new Congress seems more likely to leave the country more or less as it found it.

UPDATE: LGF noticed that Terrorist Poetry was big hit at the YK.

Ron Paul's Fifteen Minutes

Congressman Ron Paul (R-TX) generates more internet press than all the other candidates combined, it seems. His name has been on Technorati's most-searched list for a couple weeks, rivaling Paris Hilton and YouTube for search popularity endurance. Whether or not his fledgling campaign for President will so endure is another matter. Rummaging through the odd blog with a Ron Paul theme, I found some common characteristics among his supporters:

  • Young
  • Typically apolitical
  • Technology careers
  • Homosexual
  • Educated
  • Atheist
  • Decent writing skills
  • No particular axe to grind

I know many who fit the type, particularly working in the software industry. For a few years, I was surprised at all the Ayn Randians in my trade. At my last company, The Fountainhead was as common on the desktop and backpack as slashdot was on the monitor. (By the way, I'm not saying "all Ron Paul supporters are " [fill in the noun phrase from the list above]. I'm saying that of the dozen or so sites I looked over last night, 100 percent fell into at least two of the categories above. Unscientific, perhaps, but striking.)

Great. So where is Ron Paul going?

Well, nowhere, really. He has a low ceiling. As something of a libertarian, Paul's views will quickly steer into that terminal maelstrom of American politics where liberals and conservatives, Democrats and Republicans, the godless and the Godly all find fault with a single one of Ron Paul's views.

It's sad, in a way. Except for being more interventionist that Paul, I share most of his political and economic views straight down the page. Like William F. Buckley, I describe myself as libertarian except for the atheism (which is not a requirement of libertarianism but has become frightfully common). I oppose almost everything the government does under the commerce clause and the 14th Amendment. I have no use for the Departments of Education, Veterans Affairs, Health and Human Services, or Homeland Security. I can live without HUD, Labor, and Energy, too. I think each new Congress should be issued exactly one ream of 8.5 X 11 paper onto which the whole of its legislation must fit. I'd like to see Congress spend more time in recess than in session so that members could hold down real jobs with which to supplement their $55,000 a year (plus travel and office expenses) salaries.

When it comes to foreign policy, I could probably live with a libertarian's isolationism for as long as the public would tolerate it. (Events would force even Ron Paul's hand, though, as his solemn oath of office would require him to finally defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.) In exchange for his foreign policy, I get the elimination of 80 percent of the government, and that it is a fair trade. The military could be reconstituted much faster than the bureaucracy. And the people whose after tax income increased 40 to 70 percent would be most reluctant to return to the tax and spend days of monstrous government. Likely, a generation would have to pass away before government could begin to grow significantly.

I am encouraged by the support, the passionate support, Paul receives. I am, frankly, surprised that so many people who don't fit the profile of libertarian are eager to dismantle big government as we know it. Is this surge in idealistic libertarianism analogous to the grass roots conservatism that Buckley, Goldwater, and Russell Kirk ignited in the late 50s and early 60s? If so, we have much to look forward to 15 years hence.

So why Fred Thompson and not Ron Paul?

First, better either man than any Democrat. Second, I believe that a Republican and a conservative must win this election to stave off the totalitarian beast that the Democrat party yearns to foist upon us. Third, Fred Thompson has a chance because he won't steer into the maelstrom in which Ron Paul must attempt to navigate. Fred will protect the many vested interests that keep those seas a-churning. Otherwise, he couldn't gain his party's nomination.

Ron Paul's star has not crested, but it will soon and long before the primaries are over. His central ideas will not drive the parties toward a more libertarian view. At best, Thompson might propose elimination of the Department of Education, but it won't happen. Reagan couldn't do it. As soon as Paul's numbers climb high enough to reflect the party's radar, they will unleash a flurry of deadly accurate heat-seeking missiles to destroy him.

Also, his supporters will soon see that he isn't a left wing nut case out to destroy Bush. Almost 30 percent of the Ron Paul blogs I checked out also promoted the 9/11 conspiracy theory (Bush did it, Cheney did it, Murdoch did it, Israel did it). A significant number demonstrated patently anti-semitic or anti-black themes, leading me to believe that some white supremacists have mistakenly adopted Paul as one of their own. Most of the bloggers expressed strong opposition to at least one or two of Paul's major issues, though the bloggers don't seem to realize that Paul disagrees with them. (He's pro-life, for instance, and more than 80 percent of the blogs were vehemently pro-abortion.)

Too bad he doesn't have a chance. We could use some real entertainment and a real choice. And I could use an 80 percent tax cut.

Obama's Weird Chess Game

Democrat candidate for president Barack Obama's bizarre chess game with foreign policy took another twist today. In remarks to a report, Obama seemed to formulate his nuclear policy as he went along:

"I think it would be a profound mistake for us to use nuclear weapons in any circumstance," Obama said, with a pause, "involving civilians." Then he quickly added, "Let me scratch that. There's been no discussion of nuclear weapons. That's not on the table."

Is this a chess game? Does Obama have some grand politic strategory in mind? It's like a game of Good Cop, Bad Cop with Obama playing both parts. One day he's doing Hennessy shots with Kim Jong Il, the next he's pulling out of Iraq, then he's invading allies, and later he's eliminating our nuclear arsenal.Policy-o-Meter

Democrat rivals pounced on the neophyte's fourth foreign policy gaffe in two weeks. At the beginning, Hillary Clinton's attacks on Obama's foreign policy might have been mere campaign maneuvering. But many Democrats must now wonder if Obama is capable of making it to the Iowa Caucuses.

Moreover, the general population should be very concerned that one of the country's two parties takes Barack Obama seriously. His statements on genocide, invading nuclear-powered allies, kissing up to despots, and no-use of nuclear arms prove the man has never really thought about America's place in the world. Therefore, anything--ANYTHING--Obama says about Bush's foreign policy can be summarily dismissed. Now, if only the Democrats would summarily dismiss Obama.

Matt Margolis calls Obama "clueless"

There may be more on the OTB Traffic Jam. While at OTB, don't miss this wonderful tidbit about WSJ.

CNN calls Obama the Democrats' "punching bag."

Dan Balz, writing in the Washington Post, manages to break away from his Ode to Obama long enough to mention this:

He continues to walk a fine line between sounding fresh and sometimes appearing green, between being the candidate who can offer an appealing break from the past and one whose inexperience may give people pause.

Quite.  But Mr. Balz mentions only two of Barack's four gaffes.  Were Dan paying closer attention, he might have concluded as many have:  Obama isn't ready.

Minneapolis-St. Paul Bridge Collapse

UPDATE and Bump: Predictably, the idiot left has begun blaming George W. Bush and the Iraq War on Terror for the bridge collapse (Gateway Pundit). They know they're full of manure. Saturday, liberal Bob Beckel on FoxNews admitted that there was no connection, but he went to explain the liberal lies: "Those of us who are opposed to this war will anything to advance our point."

It's nice to hear a Democrat fess up to lying.

I came home feeling feverish and went to bed earlier. I woke up at 9:30, planning to do some blogging.

But my first glance

around the world began with Captain's Quarter where I learned of the bridge collapse and of Ed Morrissey's search for his

dauther-in-law and granddaaughter. They are okay.

Michelle Malkin has continuing coverage.

CNN has continuous live feed. ***UPDATE*** CNN's live feed stopped at 10:40 p.m. CDT.

Nothing else deserves comment. This deserves only my prayers.

Here's the bridge before the collapse for reference--you'll be seen plenty of the after photos to compare.

Obama's Little Mind on Foreign Policy

Barack Obama proves he would be a dangerous commander-in-chief. Two weeks ago, he told us that the United States is obliged to stay out of wars, even to prevent genocide. He would not have fought Germany in World War II unless Germany attacked the United States. He would not stop the genocide in Darfur or Congo. He would not have gone to Somalia or Bosnia.

That, again, was two weeks ago.

In last week's YouTube debate, Obama told us that as President his first foreign policy blunder . . . move would be trips to North Korea, Chile, Cuba, and Syria. He clearly doesn't understand how dictatorships work, thinking such visits would do any good for the people of those country. As was know, dictators capitalize on naive foreign leaders by turning state visits into propaganda devices.

Now this week.

Yesterday, Obama changed course again. Now he's all for going to war with Pakistan. An AP analysis sees right through Obama's stance:

This new policy is designed to show that Obama would be a tough commander in chief when times demand it, even though he opposed the Iraq war and wants to open a dialogue with foreign foes.

But Obama goes further than the analysis indicates. By invading a sovereign country without its consent and in violation of treaties, Obama would likely start a war with a nuclear power. The chain-reaction of such an invasion would be unpredictable and immensely dangerous. India could pre-emptively strike Pakistan, hoping to take out its nuclear missiles. Israel might do the same, drawing Syria, Egypt, Iran, and other into an all-out Middle East war. How would Pakistan's other neighbors respond? How many men would join al Qaeda in response?

Ed Morrissey, blogging on Obama's shifting stance, says this latest foreign policy gaffe ought to end Obama' career as a serious candidate for president. I agree. (See Ed's links to Michelle Malkin, too.)

Barack Obama has evolved from curiosity to wonder to worry. His handle on how the world works is very loose and shaky. One more blunder, and even his race, curiousness, and "wonder boy" status won't save him. Party leaders will have to look hard at the weak mind that lies beneath his polished surface.

UN Approves Darfur Force

The UN Security Council, today, finally got around to approving a 26,000-strong force to control the violence in Darfur (FoxNews.com). I have a depressing suspicion that this means there are no Christians left for the Muslims to kill in Darfur. Expat Yank thinks the same:

There are only two reasons a predator state engaged in fomenting widespread slaughter (the UN has not termed Darfur “genocide”) will voluntarily allow in a UN peacekeeping force: 1) that state has already accomplished most of its ”slaughter” goals (remember, this conflict began in February 2003), or 2) it doesn’t believe the UN force will be able to accomplish much of anything anyway, so its best to let it be deployed in order to get the “international community” off its back.

Sadder, still, is the lack of blog and editorial reaction to the news. A couple of years ago, even Barack Obama was calling for action in Sudan--even unilateral US military action. Today, nothing.

Either genocide has become too familiar to notice, or the economy is providing enough distractions that otherwise good people don't care.

Also, Theo Spark has the official banner of the operation.

Brookings Institute Says US Gaining in Iraq

Linked from Hugh HewittThe headline would have read, "We're Gaining in Iraq," but I didn't want to confuse any liberals for whom the "we" in Iraq is al Qaeda. The surge is working according two liberals from the Brookings Institute writing in the New York Times. And according to Dean Barnett blogging on HughHewitt.townhall.com, their former friends on the left are ready to do to them what it appears Chuck Schumer did to the Chief Justice.

Barnett writes:

Characteristically, both [liberal attack] pieces didn’t take issue with what Brookings-men Kenneth Pollack and Michael O’Hanlon reported seeing in Iraq but instead attacked them personally. If you’ve studied the moonbats in their native habitats as I have the past several years, this comes as no surprise. After all, what is the chickenhawk meme but an attempt to win an argument by attacking your opponent rather than engaging his ideas? Has anyone come back from Iraq recently and not seen progress? Wouldn’t an effective rebuttal of O’Hanlon’s and Pollack’s article sought out such friendly sources?

Of course, liberals attack with personal insults. They have no reason, no logic, no defense, no apology for their positions. They arrive at their positions the way a water bug arrives at the edge of a table.

In "Up From Liberalism," William F. Buckley described this as "the liberal mania." To date, medical science has found no cure, and society has invested far too little in its eradication.

H/T Discerning Texan