December 22, 2004

Gratuitous Political Post

As you may have noticed, I haven't had much to say about politics lately. Just more interested in cultural matters at the moment, especially with Christmas upon us. However, I will throw out this observation for what it's worth:

Those people hellbent on scalping Donald Rumsfeld are doing so for purposes of domestic politics only. I find this disgusting.

I find it particularly ironic that those on the left howling the loudest about under-equipped troops are the same ones who typically sport "What if the Air Force had to hold a bakesale to buy one B-2 Bomber" bumperstickers. As for their outrage over the whole death-notice signature kerfluffle, I understand that it is at least theoretically possible to support the troops while opposing the war, but I don't believe for an instant that most of these people adhere to that philosophy. "Crocodile tears" is, I believe, the correct expression. In fact, I believe this entire outburst is, at least for the Left, nothing more than payback for the election and I dismiss about 98% of it as pure blather.

I am more concerned with those on the right - McCain, et al, who now appear to have joined the scalping party. For McCain, this is pure political bet-hedging, a ploy to keep in with the middle in case Rumsfeld (and Bush) flame out in Iraq. He has got his eye so firmly fixed on '08 that I'm beginning to think of him as Hillary in Drag. As for some of the others - Lott and Hagel, for instance - this is simply an opportunity to pay Rumsfeld back for his efforts to reform the military. Rummy is seriously rocking the boat and these folks don't like it.

In normal times, there would be nothing extraordinary, or even all that disturbing, about any of this behavior. But these are not normal times and these people seem to have forgotten that we're at war. Rumsfeld is certainly no saint and he may not be the perfect SecDef, but he's a very good one. Trying to take him down from motives of revenge or political calculation under such circumstances displays, in my mind, a mindset that still does not grasp what we're up against. I find this brand of 9/10 Syndrome to be particularly appalling and repugnant.

That is all.

Posted by Robert at December 22, 2004 09:59 AM

Indeed. Can you imagine if Patton slapped the soldier today?

Posted by: The Colossus at December 22, 2004 10:53 AM

Man, that would be a hell of a bake sale.

Posted by: Bill from INDC at December 22, 2004 11:13 AM

On Rumsfeld's critics: the senators they do not like him because he refuses to kiss senatorial backsides. Where is the admission of culpability on the part of Senators McCain, Lott, and Hagel in the cuts of the 1990swhose effects we feel to this day? On Rumsfeld the man: is he a son-of-a-bitch? Unquestionably. Is he paid to be kind or sensitive? No (although he has both qualities in quantity). His mission from the president is to transform the Defense Department and to fight and win the conventional and unconventional wars we find ourselves waging. By all accounts, he is doing an outstanding job. Has be made some mistakes and will he make more in the future? Probably and inevitably. Do I want to continue as SecDef? Damn straight because Rumsfeld knows how to win.

Posted by: LMC at December 22, 2004 12:24 PM

Rumsfeld IS an outstanding Secretary of Defense and by far GWBs smartest appointment. No position in DC is more treacherous politically. The Generals are as politically savy as the Senators or they wouldn't be Generals and they know how to use those in Congress to protect their turf. There was no chance when Rumsfeld started this he was going to please any of the sacred cows in the Army or in the Senate.

Fortunately, with his prior experience in the militiary as an officer, as Sec of Def, then in the White House and in Congress Rumsfeld was the perfect candidate. He knew what needed to be done and he knew he'd be taking arrows in the back for his efforts. He's a self-made man yet has no ambitions for himself here. He serves the President and his country. What a unique and honorourable man!

While it's a shame for Rummy and the services he's getting such bad publicity the fact is it's utterly meaningless and may in fact have it's advantages. We have a man in GWB who really doesn't care what the elitist do or say. We have a man in GWB who in fact makes it clear he honors Donald Rumsfeld and people like him. (i.e. Tenet, Bremer & Franks, even if you have guestions on these men you've got to appreciate GWB's award. If that's not poking a finger in liberal eyes I don't know what is.) The fact is the MSM cannot fire Rumsfeld nor can they prevent the correct story from getting out. They can still create a lot of heat but they can't stop the light from shining through eventually. By now most Americans know Rummy gave a far more detailed answer to that guardsman and was not flippant or disrespectful. Far more pople know he was given a standing ovation at the end and that he's a popular SofD among the troops. Not as many as should perhaps but a lot.

At the end of the day Rummy is still standing. His President gave him full support as did his troops. The MSM attacked with their best stuff and failed and have taken another hit to their credibility with their biased and inaccurate coverage. Rummy is stronger while McCain and Hagel are further exposed as sleezy opportunists sucking up to the mainstream media and the NY Times and the Networks shown as feckless. That's not so bad.

Posted by: rw at December 24, 2004 03:06 PM
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