Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: What! You too? I thought I was the only one.

-C.S. Lewis

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Advice From Digby

Go read. This is a truly excellent post by Digby.

I think this is where we separate the men from the boys and the women from the girls. If, after all you've seen these last five years you still believe that the Bush administration can be given the benefit of the doubt, that they will do the right thing, change course, follow sage advice, reevaluate their strategy, bow to the facts on the ground --- then you have the same disease the Bush administration has. As Ben Franklin said, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.
What I think Digby gives us liberals here is two things. 1) comfort for liberal hawks who think they have to something to prove to the Kos crowd, and 2) a roadmap for not being shrill. Granted, republicans will call you shrill no matter what you say, but there is a difference between being called shrill by the GOP and actually being shrill. If we frame all of our policy discussions as steps in a future campaign narrative that any eventual nominee could pick up and run with, it will serve to give a history to our candidate's position. So when he or she starts talking about Iraq on TV, it'll be as if you'd been hearing this all along, and now its finally starting to make sense. Well, we have been hearing this all along, but hopefully I'm making sense. You'd have to go back a few years to make any charge of political opportunism stick.

To me, liberal hawks are guilty of only one thing: being trustworthy. Who knows whether a more able diplomat would have been able to build a real coalition to oppose Iraq, whether a more honest president could have garnered support for the real reasons behind the war instead of trumping up phony WMD crap, whether a less ideological defense team could have war-planned better, whether a more careful administration would have written a real exit strategy? But this administration remains incapable of doing any of those things. To support the war (as opposed to supporting the president), you have to assume that it will be carried out in a way that will be beneficial to our original aims. Unfortunately, anyone who thought that the Bush administration was up to this task was sadly mistaken. Liberal hawks shouldn't feel even the least bit bad (or embarrassed or anything else) about supporting war. Their only mistake was to suspend too much disbelief about what they already knew of George W. Bush. I'd like to think that assuming that the president of our great nation has even an ounce of sense isn't an unforgivable sin.

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