Iraq Part Deaux

micadelic said:

If you start with the premise that the right has fucked it up so bad that you can never fix it, you are not only cheating the people of this country who deserve a government that actually works, you are cheating yourself by setting yourself up for failure.

I agree. The Democrats need to prove their mettle by showing leadership and good judgment. (This, of course, with the obvious caveat that Bush still holds a tremendous amount of power.)

The thing is, Bush sent the bull in the china shop. You can’t unbreak the china. The possible outcomes have been limited. Success at this point, as we’ve said all along, is international cooperation to try to get a legitimate Iraqi government going. We can’t do it ourselves and we likely can’t do it quickly. We do need Iraqis to take their country back, but we also have to remember that there are sometimes conflicts so deep in sectarian terms that they are almost permanent.

My point being, success means something different than it used to. When Bush went in success was defined as defeating Hussein. Yes, congrats, mission accomplished. Now success is — to what extent can we minimize civil war while we try to get a legitimate government going? That is a shitload harder than taking out a second rate military.

I think the political problem the Right had with Iraq last week was the result of a policy that seems endless and frankly hopeless right now. The Democrats have to lead us out of hopelessness in Iraq. If Bush lets them. The outcome will not be beautiful.

PS – micadelic, I do appreciate your positive attitude towards the outcome of the recent election. If Left and Right honestly tried to work together, regardless of our differences, good things could be done.

Iraq Part Deaux

3 thoughts on “Iraq Part Deaux

  1. micadelic says:

    I just want to say that if you actually work to weaken the opposition, you become part of the problem. You become a Shiite trying to rid the village of Sunnis (obvious hyperbole). I think that reasonable and intelligent men and women should do their parts to end this cycle. I do not agree to some of your basic premises (whether we should have gone into Iraq, whether lives were lost for “no good reason” I vehemently disagree with you) but I’m done debating them, we live in the world we live in on November 12, 2006. What can we do to make it a better place? One of my favorite sayings in life and in business is “you do better by doing better.” You don’t do better by blaming the other guy, or becoming a victim.

    It’s occurred to me that this government may actually work better when power is shared, not when one party controls all branches of government. I lean conservative but I am very socially liberal. Therefore if the right continues to monopolize the government, I may be happy that they shrink the size of the government but they may go overboard in enforcing their brand of morality. It is good to have the left that keeps this in check. Same thing can be said the other way, the left, left to their own devices, would most likely grow the size and influence of the government way beyond what I believe is healthy for a truly free society. They also, in my view, may seek to re-write history and change this country into something that the founding fathers (read the constitution) would not recognize. In other words, they did want to separate church and state by not endorsing a particular religion, but they obviously did not wish to eliminate all mention of religion from the public square. These are two entirely different things.

    So from my view, a strong opposition (whatever party that may be) is a good thing and needs to be preserved. If you work to weaken it, you are doing a disservice and operating from the basest motives of political endeavor. I think if there is no opposition, what results is intellectual incest represented in a very real way by extreme examples such as Soviet Leninism, the Taliban, Sharia law, and the Ku Klux Klan.


  2. Sean Sharp says:

    First of all, thank you Micadelic for your sincere comments. I think I get to a place emotionally where I have lost any sense of trust and hope in dealing with anyone who has supported this administration.

    You are correct as well in that somehow the country has to work together, I’m just very skeptical about it happening is all. My simple plan is to write letters to my senators and representative once a month, reiterating issues that I think need to be addressed. It isn’t much, but I guess it is something. We’ll see how it all unfolds.

    I agree completely with you that the Bush administration has acted in a classic liberal fashion fiscally (look at the cost of the war)and even in foreign policy terms. It is true that there was 9-11, but that doesn’t excuse the actions that his administration have taken. Going into a country for regime change is not a conservative thing to do. Cutting taxes but not cutting spending is not a conservative thing to do. Signing into law a federally run program for K-12 education is not a conservative thing to do (No Child Left Behind). All of these things are not conservative–they would be classic liberal actions.

    I think that there are some of us on the left who do want to weaken the opposition because we have a chance to do so as has been done to the left many times by the likes of Karl Rove and company. Will we get beyond that? I don’t know to be honest. Hopefully, but people are pissed and for good reason. Many American lives have been lost for no good reason, a region has been greatly destabilized and many Iraqi lives have been lost as well.

    Thanks for your comments though. I appreciate a lively discussion and I enjoy the lolife blog on a regular basis. Perhaps moving the bull out of the china shop is a good start though.


  3. micadelic says:


    It seems to me that Mr. Bush is being quite conciliatory and extending an olive branch to the left. So much so that the real hard-core righties are pretty pissed at him because in their eyes, he’s “giving away the store.” Ironically Bush is actually being called a liberal (which on many fiscal issues, and even some social issues like immigration, he actually is). It’s all over the right-wing blogosphere. It looks like a real change in Iraq policy is about to be tried and Mr. Bush is doing exactly what he has been criticized for not doing, which is changing course and actually listening to advice.

    My point being, if he gets beat up by the left for admitting mistakes, showing weakness and backtracking, that’s going to be proof positive in my eyes that people are just looking to weaken the opposition instead of trying to realize actual solutions. We’ll see.


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