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It does remind one of their attitude on the Iraq war: every set back was gleefully trumpeted and every minor advance was dismissed. They never much cared how their rhetoric or votes might embolden the enemy or unnerve our ally. The sole consideration was domestic political gain. If they didn’t want to lose they certainly gave every indication it was low on their list of priorities. Bashing the President, rallying their base and positioning themselves for the next election was clearly more critical.Harry Reid's (no doubt also inadvertent) shock to the insurance industry doesn't ease my concern one bit.
Nor does the actual cornerstone tactic expressed by Schumer and Reid back in 2007, when they confidently predicted they could accomplish their goals because Republicans lacked sufficient political courage to take them on:
Democrats know they might lose this month's showdown with President Bush on legislation to pull troops out of Iraq. But with 2008 elections in mind, majority Democrats says it is only a matter of time before they will get their way. Senior Democrats are calculating that if they keep the pressure on, eventually more Republicans will jump ship and challenge the president - or lose their seats to Democratic contenders.Now, of course, the war isn't an issue - after all, we all knew all along our boys could get 'er done.
"It's at least my belief that they are going to have to break because they're going to look extinction, some of them, in the eye," said Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., of his Republican colleagues.
Added Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev.: "We're going to pick up Senate seats as a result of this war."
It's the economy, stupid.
Update: More happy thoughts, featuring Joe Biden and his traveling mouth.
FWIW: Spell checker suggests "Schumer" should be "Schemer", but I left it as is.Posted by Greyhawk at October 4, 2008 05:15 PM
This whole thing is stinking like a great big set up. Pelosi, Reid and Schumer are all smart, experienced people who don't make these kinds of rookie mistakes "on accident". Getting the market to dump a trillion dollars in one day after giving the OK for Dem committee chairs to vote "no" last Monday does nothing but help one of the presidential candidates. Plus, they got to pass another $150 billion of junk that wouldn't pass any other way.
Don't forget this -- Obama (and his helpers) are short the market and economy. At the moment, they've got leverage that they are going to use to help him get elected. Get ready for 50% inflation to pay for all this fun.Posted by Concerned Citizen at October 5, 2008 04:24 AM
Some of us will pay more than others for this debacle. All you gotta do is look at the Electoral College breakout to figure out who is "entitled" to freeload and who pays the bills.Posted by ChknLtL at October 5, 2008 06:41 AM
I have been seeing speculation for years that the shit would hit the fan when the baby boomers started retiring. It may not be the cause of our current mess, but I suspect there's some relationship. Here's the thing about inflation - it's good for people with fixed-interest debt and somewhat-indexed income. Hold onto your job and take advantage of matching contributions until this settles down and your retirement will be a lot less likely to involve dwelling in a refrigerator box.Posted by Porkov at October 5, 2008 12:08 PM
So what I'm reading into this is that the Dems, by virtue of a few carefully placed words, have the power to win/lose wars and topple our economy.
Now that's power.
Why wouldn't that be attractive? Might vs. right is an old contest, and might has usually won.
Repubs are behind the eight ball, and don't seem all that uncomfortable there. Where's the muscle? What's the message for those of us who can actually connect some of these dots? Be nice and roll over?Posted by Feeling Pwned in PA at October 5, 2008 12:09 PM
The primary reason the Democrats failed to completely destroy Iraq and the US military in 2007 (mere months after gaining control of congress by promising to do just that) wasn't their Republican opposition. The Dems made the same fundamental mistake McCarthy did decades ago - he thought he could bet against the US Army and win. Years later, Democrats probably mistakenly believe McCarthy's failure was attempting to take on communists, an historical mis-read that could explain their position in 2007.
That might be worthy of a much longer post, but for one illustration here's a description of a September 12, 2006 meeting between Representative John Murtha and Army Chief of Staff Peter Schoomaker from Bob Woodward's book The War Within: A Secret White House History 2006-2008. On that day, Schoomaker had called on the congressman (and ranking Democrat on the House Appropriations Committee) to discuss the Army's budget:
Schoomaker argued that it was important to win in Iraq. Most people he had met out in the country, he said, wanted to see it through. It was important to succeed.In America, at least for now - betting against the Army is a losing proposition. But betting against Republicans isn't - the GOP has failed to gain anything on the domestic political front from gains in Iraq. One could blame the media for that, but I think the pols themselves share the responsibility. Throughout the turn around there they tried desperately to make anything else the focus of voter attention (see "illegal immigration" for one example) out of fear of failure. One might even surmise that while the Dems were betting against success, the Republicans weren't willing to bet against them.
Murtha launched into a diatribe against the president and the Iraq war. You can be as enthusiastic about the war as you want, he said, but we simply don't have the troops to sustain it for much longer. Public opinion was strongly against the war. How could the president ignore the American people? This is a democracy, Murtha insisted, pounding the table, waving a copy of the Constitution in the air and claiming that Bush had become a "dictator."
Schoomaker suggested that if Murtha thought the president's approval rating was low, he ought to take a look at recent polls. You'll find that the military is the institution that people have the most confidence in, followed by police and firefighters, then organized religion, he said. All these were above or near 50 percent approval. The president was down in the 30s, and Congress was in the 20s or lower. "Congress is even lower than the president, Schoomaker said.
"This meeting's over!" Murtha shouted, red faced and angry as hell.
Schoomaker left quietly.
I'm not sure who the Democrats are betting against on economic issues, though. I hope whoever it is they've got the same fortitude and determination as the American Soldier.Posted by Greyhawk at October 5, 2008 02:35 PM
Posted by jordan at October 5, 2008 02:37 PM
In the midst of an economic crisis, that so many people think now's a good time to hand the country over to a socialist collectivist Marxist with mixed feelings about his country and a wife (First Lady) who hates it more than loves it, is a disappointment.
Nor does the actual cornerstone tactic expressed by Schumer and Reid back in 2007, when they confidently predicted they could accomplish their goals because Republicans lacked sufficient political courage to take them on:What's really, really sad is that once again, they were right.
Republicans really are the Spineless Party.
We are SO screwed -- even if McCain/Palin manage to win.Posted by mariner at October 5, 2008 04:40 PM
"It's at least my belief that they are going to have to break because they're going to look extinction, some of them, in the eye," said Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., of his Republican colleagues.Where is the Republican Patton, who could inspire his party by saying, "I don't want you worried about your own extinction -- I want you to make those other sonsabitches worry about THEIR extinction!" ???? Posted by mariner at October 5, 2008 04:44 PM
At Republican rallies, the crowd breaks into chants of “U-S-A! U-S-A! U-S-A!”
At Democratic rallies, the crowd breaks into chants of “O-ba-ma! O-ba-ma! O-ba-ma!”Posted by Tony at October 5, 2008 09:04 PM Hide Comments | Show/Add Comments in Popup Window(10) | (Note: You must refresh main page to view newly posted comments here)