Thursday, September 6, 2007

GOP Strategy 101: Identify the obstacle, smear the obstacle

"The new report from the Government Accountability Office is obviously a thorn in the side of the Bush administration and supporters of its Iraq policy." So, true to form, the Republicans are attacking the GAO report and moving the goalposts, rather than addressing the problems listed in the report. Typical.

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4 comments:

Donald Douglas said...

I posted about this earlier. F. Kagan made a good case that the "benchmarks" aren't measuring the reall progress on the ground.

Repsac3: I noticed your remarks about the commenters over on my page. As long as there are no personal attacks, people are free to debate. Most of the antiwar, Lew Rockwell types haven't been too intelligent, though.

I must admit that in our earlier exchanges I found you to be pretty thoughtful, so I hope you're not turned off by some of the intensity over there.

It's the unfiltered web world, I guess.

Burkean Reflections

repsac3 said...

By my reading, Kagan made the point that we should only look at those things that are going well, & ignore the rest. If positions were reversed & the benchmarks were being met while there was less military success, he'd be saying that what happens militarily doesn't matter, as long as those benchmarks are getting met. All that matters is that Kagan, PNAC (& indirectly, the rest of the supporters of this invasion) can find some slender thread to hang their hats & political reputations on.

There ought to be some benchmarks by which we can judge this fiasco that don't have to be created in hindsight. I'd like to see some of these NeoCons come up with real goals--& benchmarks by which they can be judged--that don't change, or become beside the point, everytime they're not met.

As far as your blog, we'll see... Should it become the sausagefest of NeoCon faux machismo & ad hom attack that Mike's has, I've no use for it. While I often disagree with you, you seem intelligent and able to communicate without all that bullshit. Some of your more recent guests are bringin' you down (& in some cases, you applaud their doing so.) But, I'll keep reading... ...& we'll see...

Donald Douglas said...

Repsac3: You have a point about Kagan, though he says the benchmarks aren't really measuring current progress. Even if he saw them being satisfied, we'd still might need to make adjustments in our evaluations, to take into account the new tactics and strategies that initial difficulties required.

Comment on my blog if you like. You're a reasonable guy, and that's good. I'd just like to keep my readership up, with various views represented (so I'm self-interested in that respect).

But those who comment don't "bring me down," or at least you haven't mentioned what you mean. I support freedom of speech, and as long as there are no personal attacks, everyone's free to share their remarks.

That sounds democratic, so if that's what you mean be pulling me down, maybe you'd be better off in some Ivy League faculty lounge, rather than debating the issues with the rest of us proletarians.

I've responded to your points about "motives of imperial projects" on my page.

repsac3 said...

Even if he saw them being satisfied, we'd still might need to make adjustments in our evaluations, to take into account the new tactics and strategies that initial difficulties required.

I would agree to some "tweaking," & even adding a few new benchmarks in response to historical facts (if/when something we didn't plan for crops up, we should evaluate how well or poorly we respond), but we do have specific goals we went to Iraq to attain, and there are specific benchmarks that must be met to atain them. Those goals & benchmarks should be evaluated as is, no matter what happens on the ground.

Once we spoke of "a democratic Iraq," but there seems to be far less of that talk now. It's fine to change that goal to "a stable government friendly to the US," but we shouldn't ignore that the original goal was an overreach that stood little chance of being met, when evaluating our progress & the people who chose to put us there. In war, it's fine to move the goalposts when necessary, but not without acknowledging doing so & why...

Even though the benchmarks that were set by the President & Congress don't show the high points some wish to showcase, they are still the ones that everyone agreed would be used to measure this thing. Pretending that the poor President was forced into agreeing to them, or that they are no longer important just a few months later seems disingenuous to me.

Oversight & accountability are good things...

But those who comment don't "bring me down," or at least you haven't mentioned what you mean. I support freedom of speech, and as long as there are no personal attacks, everyone's free to share their remarks.

We may have a different idea about what constitutes a personal attack then, because that is exactly what I mean... Some of the newer guests seem much more free with the invective than the folks I encountered there earlier. But maybe I'm just getting sensitive...

That sounds democratic, so if that's what you mean be pulling me down, maybe you'd be better off in some Ivy League faculty lounge, rather than debating the issues with the rest of us proletarians.

Hmmm... I believe that's the first time anyone's suggested I'm an elitist... Dude, I work retail. I'm no ivy leager... I just think namecalling and the hate displayed by folks like Mike on his blog are really unnecessary and sad. Yes, politics matters... But we just disagree... That doesn't make the folks on either side of the debate evil people (Though there are some evil people on all sides, it isn't party affiliation that makes one a flaming asshole, but poor upbringing or some kinda personality defect.)