Friday, October 20, 2006

Jonah Goldberg: telling hippies to shove it is priority #1

By Heraclitus

In the words of Kim Deal, "I know you're a real cuckoo." My own take on the wingnuttery of Jonah Goldberg (and fellow traveller Dinesh D'Souza) is here. But now Goldberg has written a column admitting that the Iraq War was a mistake--albeit a "worthy mistake." His column is here, but life is short and Goldberg is an idiot. Instead, read Amanda Marcotte's truly brilliant annihilation of Goldberg's piece. It's hard to pick one quote as the best, but if I had to, it would be this one:

He’s admitted that the Iraq War was a “mistake”, but the main point he wants to get across is that none of this means you pot-smoking hippies were right. So quit gloating between puffs of your marijuana cigarettes. The notion that we non-dope-smoking, non-hippie liberals might have also seen right through Bush’s bullshit at the beginning is inconceivable to him. No, in Jonah’s world, when Bush ran around the country telling people, “Oh no, don’t believe the experts about whether or not Iraq has WMDs, believe a two bit asshole who you know for a fact will lie his head off it means he gets his way,” the only people who weren’t scared out of their minds must have been too stoned to care. No other explanation. None.

Meanwhile, what are we to think when even a rat like Goldberg is deserting the sinking GOP ship? Granted, he's hardly coming out as a Democrat (because that would make him a fascist, don'cha know), but when even Goldberg doesn't have Bush's back on the war, you wonder what's going on. Indeed, this string of GOP nincompoopery, so close to the election, makes one slightly paranoid. Is there some shadowy group, led by Cancer Man, who really controls the government, and has decided that they've had enough of W and the GOP?

Maybe, but maybe it's more likely that this just shows us that the GOP, and Bush and his cadre in particular, really don't know anything except how to play dirty. Many of the scandals are the inevitable result of the enormous power the Republicans have wielded over the past six years, but much of their problems come from the stubborn nature of reality, which refuses to contort itself into the shape required by their ideology (on W's underdeveloped reality principle, see here). That even someone like Jonah Goldberg is realizing the Iraq War can no longer be defended is a sign of just how bad things have gotten.

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  • In 2004 most GOP pundits and candidates were traveling downstream in their "swiftboats" attacking every Democratic candidate that dared to criticize the Bush administration's war in Iraq. In 2006 you not only can't find the GOP "swiftboat", you can't find a Republican willing to jump in and try to navigate the hapless dingy against the strong current of voter dissatisfaction with the seemingly never ending war.

    Someone throw Jonah a lifeline!

    Read more here:

    By Blogger Daniel DiRito, at 1:29 AM  

  • Find out how other Americans feel. Our foreign policy index is an amazing way to gage public opinion about American foreign policy and the current state of affairs, and from the way things look, the public may just be at a tipping point. Read on…

    Here at Public Agenda, we’ve created a new tool to track Americans’ opinions on foreign policy issues, providing a basis for political commentary. Similar to the Consumer Confidence Index, the Foreign Policy Anxiety Indicator provides policy makers, journalists and ordinary citizens with the public's overall comfort level with America's place in the world and current foreign policy.

    An essential tool updated twice a year, the Indicator will consistently provide much-needed information on the public’s perception of more than two dozen aspects of international relations.

    In a world strewn with violence and highly-charged international issues, Americans are broadly uneasy about U.S. foreign policy. The September 2006 shows the Foreign Policy Anxiety Indicator at 130 on a scale of 0 to 200, where 0 is the most confident, 200 the most anxious and 100 neutral.

    Eight in 10 Americans feel the world is becoming a more dangerous place for Americans, yet they're also skeptical about most of the possible solutions, such as creating democracies or global development. Only improved intelligence gathering and energy independence have substantial support, with energy firmly established as a national security problem
    for the public.

    In fact, the public lacks confidence in many of the measures being taken to ensure America’s security. Less than 33% of Americans give the U.S. government an “A” or a “B” grade for its execution of the following foreign policy issues: reaching goals in Iraq and Afghanistan, maintaining good relationships with Muslim countries and protecting U.S. borders from illegal immigration. And these are just a few of the findings of the survey.

    These are some of the other startling findings:

    - 83 percent say they are worried about the way things are going for the United States in world affairs (35 percent worry "a lot", with an additional 48 percent saying they worry "somewhat.")

    - 79 percent say the world is becoming more dangerous for the United States and the American people

    - 69 percent say the United States is doing a fair or poor job in creating a more peaceful and prosperous world

    - 64 percent say the rest of the world sees the United States negatively

    - 58 percent say U.S. relations with the rest of the world are on the wrong track

    Want to learn more? Go to to download the report.

    Public Agenda is a nonprofit, nonpartisan group devoted to public opinion and public policy. The confidence in U.S. Foreign Policy Index is developed in cooperation with Foreign Affairs with support from the Hewlett and Ford foundations.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:33 PM  

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