Jay Reding.com

The Little Joys In Life

There’s nothing quite like seeing the Kossacks in a frothing rage (which granted, often seems to be their natural state). After all this time working to achieve victory for al-Qaeda “end the war,” the Kossacks didn’t get their way. Poor children.

Unless you care more about George W.’s ego than the safety and welfare of our troops, you are pissed right now.

This is classic projection. The opposition to the war is the side that constantly drags the President into this. To be clear, I don’t care about George W. Bush at this point. Politically, he’s the lamest of lame ducks. At this point, he’s let himself become a liability to the war rather than an effective advocate of it.

I support this war because we are in Iraq fighting al-Qaeda, the same group that started this war in the first place. More that that, we’re making an effort to fix the problems that created al-Qaeda in the first place, and that means that we have to ensure that the state of Iraq is able to defend its nascent democratic values. For that matter, why we’re doing the same for our allies in Lebanon.

It’s the left who has made this personal, and that’s why they’ve effectively become advocates for the enemy. Al-Qaeda wants us to withdraw. Iran wants us to withdraw. The Democrats want us to withdraw. All of them have different reasons for doing so, but they all want to achieve the very same ends.

But there is productive pissed, and destructive pissed.

I’m guessing they’re going for the latter…

he productive stuff has us redoubling our efforts to clean house in Congress, clearing out the dead weight, the corporatists, and the Republicans. There’s the taking over our local parties, bringing new blood and a cohesive sense of purpose to often moribund organizations.

And then we’ll purge the Party of the kulaks and the counterrevolutionists too! Welcome to the face of the Democratic Party circa 2007 — now that the Kos Kids think they’re entitled, they’re going to turn the Democratic Party into their party, and they won’t take no for an answer.

There’s an Orwellian irony that they’re calling this bill, which gives our troops the funds they need to hunt down al-Qaeda in Iraq, “the Capitulation Bill” — because it’s the opposite of that. It’s the left that wants us to surrender in Iraq, to hand over that country to al-Qaeda, to erase the progress that has been made. To “end the war” is to give the advantage to Iran, to al-Qaeda, and against the democratic peoples of the Middle East who are hoping for something better.

I’m glad that the left didn’t get the capitulation they wanted — not because it helps George W. Bush (which it won’t), but because it ensures that there’s still a chance for something better in Iraq. To the Kossacks, the enemy isn’t al-Qaeda, Iran, or the murderous barbarians who behead hostages and blow up children, it’s the other side of the domestic political aisle. That kind of myopia is not only sad, it’s dangerous. Seeing that side lose out and the people of Iraq win is a victory, if only a small one.

25 responses to “The Little Joys In Life”

  1. Mark says:

    “There’s nothing quite like seeing the Kossacks in a frothing rage (which granted, often seems to be their natural state). After all this time working to achieve victory for al-Qaeda “end the war,” the Kossacks didn’t get their way. Poor children.”

    Yes, you have successfully led hundreds (or thousands) more American troops to slaughter for the next year fighting for the nonexistent cause of disarming Iraq’s WMD. How very clever of you!

    Whatever short-term political price the Democrats pay for this will be quickly forgotten as ownership of this disastrous war shifts even further to George W. Bush, at the same time as public opposition to staying in Iraq can be expected to further soar. Even though it’s an absurdity for the majority of the U.S. Congress to be sticking around to referee Iraq’s civil war for another year, keeping this issue around for another year (and correspondingly forcing GOP candidates across the country to defend the proposition) assures that the 2008 election cycle will be that much bloodier for Republicans. I’d prefer to get out of Iraq before the election, but have to say that watching Republican politicians turn into a puddle under the Democratic boot in November 2008 will be a worthy consolation prize…..and ultimately deferring the end of this war ensures that it will happen.

  2. Jay Reding says:

    Yes, you have successfully led hundreds (or thousands) more American troops to slaughter for the next year fighting for the nonexistent cause of disarming Iraq’s WMD. How very clever of you!

    How incredibly stupid.

    Gee, did you ever think that the fact that we’re fighting al-Qaeda in Iraq has any significance? Or the fact that if we pull out, the other big winner is Iran, who doesn’t exactly mean well for us or for our allies across the Middle East.

    No, of course not, that would require actually thinking rather than making up half-assed arguments that don’t even make sense. We’re not fighting Saddam Hussein anymore. This is 2007, not 2003. Get with the times.

    Whatever short-term political price the Democrats pay for this will be quickly forgotten as ownership of this disastrous war shifts even further to George W. Bush, at the same time as public opposition to staying in Iraq can be expected to further soar. Even though it’s an absurdity for the majority of the U.S. Congress to be sticking around to referee Iraq’s civil war for another year, keeping this issue around for another year (and correspondingly forcing GOP candidates across the country to defend the proposition) assures that the 2008 election cycle will be that much bloodier for Republicans. I’d prefer to get out of Iraq before the election, but have to say that watching Republican politicians turn into a puddle under the Democratic boot in November 2008 will be a worthy consolation prize…..and ultimately deferring the end of this war ensures that it will happen.

    That really says it all, doesn’t it:

    Republicans: Interested in safeguarding the people of Iraq, stopping al-Qaeda, and thwarting Iran’s hegemonic ambitions throughout the Middle East — even when it comes at extreme political risk.

    Democrats: Interested in politics, and nothing but, even if it comes at the expense of losing the war.

    If the Democrats win, al-Qaeda wins — and the fact that the Democrats still don’t care is precisely why they’re too full of themselves to lead.

  3. Mark says:

    “Gee, did you ever think that the fact that we’re fighting al-Qaeda in Iraq has any significance? Or the fact that if we pull out, the other big winner is Iran, who doesn’t exactly mean well for us or for our allies across the Middle East.”

    Let me ask you this. The Bush administration stated last week that it would pack up and leave Iraq if the Iraqi government asked them to. Mind you, 70% of the American people requesting that America leave Iraq are told to go to hell by this same President, but if the hapless Iraqi government requests the same thing, Bush said he would comply. So would you, Jay Reding, support the President’s withdrawal from Iraq based on the request of the Iraqi government? Because if you do, all this preening about “funding the troops” and “preventing all-out civil war in the Middle East” by prolonging the long national nightmare in Iraq is rendered instantly null and void in the credibility department.

    Ultimately, that’s Bush’s withdrawal plan from Iraq….and the Democrats appear likely to let him get away with it. At some point in the next 12 months, the Iraqi government will request America’s withdrawal from their country….and Bush will “respectfully submit to the will of the democratically elected Iraqi government”, instantly reversing course to sponsor a timeline for withdrawal and taking the war off the table for the 2008 election. When this happens, does Jay Reding favor the “continued pursuit of imminent victory in Iraq now that we’re really starting to make progress/really staring to turn the corner in the epic battle of our time”? Or does he support the Republican Party’s short-term political windfall of taking the easy way out of Iraq based on their government’s request?

    It’ll be exciting waiting for your response to this. Should be telling who really represents the party using the blood of American soldiers as a means to a political end.

  4. Eracus says:

    What horror!! A political party using the blood of soldiers as a means to a political end? How gauche.

    You do realize, of course, that more American soldiers were killed under the Clinton Administration in peacetime than have died in battle in Iraq and Afghanistan since 9/11. You can look it up. And of course you also realize that Bush’s remarks with respect to the Iraqi government’s request for withdrawal were rhetorical, because like every other foreign government where American troops are deployed, the Iraqis will never ask the United States to withdraw its armed forces. Sixty years after the end of World War II, the United States still has troops deployed in Germany and Japan. And sixty years from now, it is a certainty the United States will still have troops deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    No doubt this is news on your planet, but here on planet Earth every rational human being understands that neither the Republican nor the Democrat Party will ever withdraw from Iraq. To do so would only cement the claim that the Americans can never be trusted while elevating Al-Qaeda to victory over not only the armed forces of the Soviet Union, but of the United States as well — to say nothing of NATO. And then where will we be?

  5. Mark says:

    “You do realize, of course, that more American soldiers were killed under the Clinton Administration in peacetime than have died in battle in Iraq and Afghanistan since 9/11. You can look it up.”

    Oh I would absolutely love to look that up. Trouble is, you and every other Republican hack who has dredged up that talking point consistently fails to back it up with verifiable statistical evidence. I wonder….I just wonder….if it’s because the entire premise is a crock of shit dreamed up by the Bill O’Reilly/Michael Savage cabal and is simply reverberating through the echo chamber of drones ever since that first erroneous deployment. So by all means, give me the resources I need to “look that up”.

    “but here on planet Earth every rational human being understands that neither the Republican nor the Democrat Party will ever withdraw from Iraq.”

    So despite the fact that 60%+ of Americans want out of Iraq, we will referee their civil war in its entirety and lose thousands more American lives? And allowing even more American blood to be needlessly spilled is somehow gonna be an asset to the political parties whose hubris fails to convince them to withdraw….even by an American public favoring withdrawal 2-1? Or wait, I suppose on your planet, “victory is right around the corner” in Iraq. If we simply wait from Memorial Day to Labor Day, we’ll have “turned the final corner” and the Shi’ites, Sunnis, and Kurds will be joining in a chorus of Kumbaya in the streets of Baghdad and finally throwing those long-promised flowers at the feet of American troops, right?

  6. Jay Reding says:

    So would you, Jay Reding, support the President’s withdrawal from Iraq based on the request of the Iraqi government? Because if you do, all this preening about “funding the troops” and “preventing all-out civil war in the Middle East” by prolonging the long national nightmare in Iraq is rendered instantly null and void in the credibility department.

    The Iraqi government has no interest in committing suicide. Al-Maliki knows very well that if we leave, it’s his head that would be one of the first against the wall. Our mission is to support the legitimate, democratic government of Iraq, which requires us to recognize their independent political will. (Which we have, even when it caused us to hold back on storming Sadr City several months ago at al-Maliki’s request.)

    The reality is that the Iraqis, especially the Sunnis, realize they need us. The battle space in al-Anbar is completely different now. The Sunnis know that al-Qaeda doesn’t care about them, and the Sadrists would ethnically cleanse them the second they could. That’s why groups like the 1920 Revolution Brigade are fighting on our side against al-Qaeda. That’s why most of the violence has shifted from al-Anbar to Diyala Province, where al-Qaeda still has some sway.

    Of course, understanding all of this requires people to pay attention to what’s going on, which the anti-war left doesn’t have the intellectual capacity to do, and the mainstream media doesn’t have the depth to report on.

    So despite the fact that 60%+ of Americans want out of Iraq, we will referee their civil war in its entirety and lose thousands more American lives? And allowing even more American blood to be needlessly spilled is somehow gonna be an asset to the political parties whose hubris fails to convince them to withdraw….even by an American public favoring withdrawal 2-1?

    Good thing that we don’t run military policy by poll figures. It’s that kind of gutless poll-driven policy that made Clinton the weakest President on national security since Carter — which puts him second for the weakest foreign-policy President of all time.

    The public doesn’t support the war because the media is manufacturing dissent — they’re being told the war is lost despite the fact that the people who are actually there and know what the hell is going on don’t agree.

    Or wait, I suppose on your planet, “victory is right around the corner” in Iraq. If we simply wait from Memorial Day to Labor Day, we’ll have “turned the final corner” and the Shi’ites, Sunnis, and Kurds will be joining in a chorus of Kumbaya in the streets of Baghdad and finally throwing those long-promised flowers at the feet of American troops, right?

    No, but if we surrender then, there will be no doubt that we’ve lost.

    The fact that we have a bunch of politicians who don’t know a damn thing about war, counter-insurgency, or Iraq think that they can run the show is a disgrace. The fact that they have the same goal in mind in al-Qaeda is even worse. The fact that our enemies are exploiting them for their own gain is dangerous.

    Our chattering classes have become our biggest liability in this war, and their cowardice and arrogance may do what al-Qaeda’s suicide bombers could never hope to achieve.

  7. Mark says:

    Jay, the Iraqi government is more than just Maliki. What happens if the Iraqi Parliament were to override Maliki and request America to leave….after they wrap up their two-month vacation, of course? Or would Maliki be the only person who could make such a request that Bush should keep his promise to?

    There’s a reason why Bush has pre-emptively winked at us that he would leave Iraq at the request of the Iraqi government. It’s Bush’s plan for an easy out to help take the war off the table going into the 2008 election…..and Maliki and/or high-ranking members of the Iraqi government WILL be making this “request” even if it they do it staring down the barrel of a gun. So at some point, you’re gonna have to actually put up or shut up regarding whether you would actually support America leaving Iraq at their request. You won’t be able to get away with a cowardly deferral of that hypothetical for long….just as you haven’t every step of the way when all the things you said would “never happen” in Iraq happened one by one.

  8. Jay Reding says:

    Jay, the Iraqi government is more than just Maliki. What happens if the Iraqi Parliament were to override Maliki and request America to leave….after they wrap up their two-month vacation, of course? Or would Maliki be the only person who could make such a request that Bush should keep his promise to?

    Except the Iraqi Parliament has no more reason to do so than al-Maliki does. Any member of the current government is a target for terrorists, and none of them have any interest in ending up with their heads sawed off.

    There’s a reason why Bush has pre-emptively winked at us that he would leave Iraq at the request of the Iraqi government. It’s Bush’s plan for an easy out to help take the war off the table going into the 2008 election…..and Maliki and/or high-ranking members of the Iraqi government WILL be making this “request” even if it they do it staring down the barrel of a gun. So at some point, you’re gonna have to actually put up or shut up regarding whether you would actually support America leaving Iraq at their request. You won’t be able to get away with a cowardly deferral of that hypothetical for long….just as you haven’t every step of the way when all the things you said would “never happen” in Iraq happened one by one.

    Except for the fact that we’ve been saying that from the beginning. The Iraqi government isn’t going to vote itself out of existence. They know full well that to ask the Americans to leave would be to leave Iraq looking like Lebanon in the mid-1980s at best. It makes absolutely no sense for them to cut their own throats — except in the febrile imaginations of those who know nothing of the situation in Iraq.

  9. Mark says:

    Jay, the fact that the Iraqi Parliament plans to take a two-month vacation during the very period of time in which Bush’s “benchmarks” are supposed to be enacted tells me the Parliament is less committed to the cause than you believe. The longer the violence drags on in Iraq, the greater the odds that elected members of the Iraqi government will walk away as so many in the Iraqi Security Forces have.

    So we pretty much have two dangerous extremes going on in the minds of the Iraqi people and the Iraqi government. At one level, they want America to leave. At another level, they want America to do all the heavy lifting and prop up the Iraqi government as though it’s a colony. Nobody in Iraq seems to have much interest in validating your fantasy of a long-term American troop presence in Iraq in collaberation with an Iraqi government in charge of its own autonomy.

    Whose bright idea was it to get into this war anyway? Oh that’s right….the guys saving us from “mushroom clouds”.

  10. Eracus says:

    “Oh I would absolutely love to look that up.”

    While I would have to agree the carelessly phrased, “were killed,” is misleading, the statistics for active-duty military fatalities speak for themselves and are a matter of public record, Mark. Not that you would ever allow basic facts, the public record, or simple common sense to temper your relentless parade of ignorance and stupidity in the comment section of this blog.

    Frankly, I think that’s probably why nobody else ever bothers to comment here. Jay does a fair job of reporting and editorializing, but as for comments, why antagonize the village idiot?

  11. Mark says:

    Eracus, show me the link. Seems like the real village idiot is the guy who rages on about far-fetched data, receives an unambiguous request to provide a credible link validating said far-fetched data, returns to make further unsubstianted claims on the topic at hand, yet STILL fails to provide the requested link to prove himself right. Now THAT GUY is an idiot.

  12. Eracus says:

    The reason it is such a waste of time to engage you, Mark, is because you don’t do your homework, you don’t think critically about your own arguments, and while you never provide any foundation for your own ridiculous assertions you expect everyone else to “prove” what is often simply common knowledge and a matter of public record. Then you dispute the public record. Or you dispute the source. Or the methodology. And so on. You simply will not accept any information that does not conform with the prejudices and preconceptions of your ignorant, self-centered, leftist worldview.

    Now, as a courtesy and in the interest of good sportsmanship, I have provided the link to the Congressional Research Service Report for Congress provided by the Defense Department via the U.S. Navy, which has been a matter of public record for some time:

    http://www.history.navy.mil/library/online/american%20war%20casualty.htm#t4

    Be sure to take a long time examining it for all its flaws and failures, as only an expert military, political, and national security analyst like you can do. Spend ALOT of time reading through it. Really, really study it. Then spend alot MORE time diligently preparing your written response detailing each and every failure and flaw in the public record, in each and every one of the sources cited in the report, in the very methodology of the report itself, and how anyway the data has all been manipulated by Karl Rove for the benefit of Dick Cheney and Haliburton and therefore isn’t reliable and must be dismissed because you just don’t think it’s true and anybody who does is an idiot.

    Take ALOT of time on this, Mark. Give us your very best effort. Please. I know you won’t disappoint us because you just won’t be able to stop yourself from explaining all this far-fetched data.

  13. Mark says:

    Eracus, I must commend you on actually finding a link that at least partially relates to the subject matter at hand. Yet what I see is active-duty military deaths reaching all-time lows during the Clinton administration…..and more than doubling in just three years of the Bush administration. Congratulations on your big statistical victory, buddy. :)

  14. Eracus says:

    As expected, just another asinine response. You have no class, Mark.

    Common sense would explain why there were less active-duty military fatalities during the Clinton Administration, because of downsizing. Less people in the military = less active-duty fatalities.

    Common sense would also explain why military fatalities increased in the early years of the Bush Administration, because in addition to the annual active-duty fatalities, there were combat fatalities in Afghanistan and Iraq.

    But then what village idiot ever shows any common sense?

  15. Mark says:

    But Eracus, you assured me repeatedly yesterday that military fatalities were higher during the Clinton administration than the Bush administration. Now today, you tell me this…..

    “Common sense would also explain why military fatalities increased in the early years of the Bush Administration,”

    Has the level of confusion in conservative circles really reached a level so troubling that you do a 100% aboutface on the issue you were so insultingly vehement about just 24 hours? Eracus, the fumes from those northern Minnesota wildfires are clearly stealing what’s left of your mind. Maybe some fresh air will help…but I doubt it. :)

  16. Eracus says:

    Mark, you are here now demonstrating precisely the pathology I predicted above: You simply refuse to accept any contrary information, no matter how factually accurate it is, and instead immediately set about attacking its source.

    The statistical evidence clearly shows there were more military fatalities under Clinton during “peacetime” than there have been under Bush fighting a two-front war. That is a fact. That is the reality. There is no ambiguity. Any confusion is entirely yours, which, as predicted, is the pathological response of your delusional state and mental disorder.

    It is the reason there is no point in discussing anything with you, and most likely why nobody else ever bothers to comment on this blog.

    Have a nice day.

  17. Mark says:

    Eracus, on the contrary, I embrace the data from the cite you linked me to, which shows the exact inverse of what you claim it did…..that active-duty military deaths hit all-time lows during the Clinton era and doubled during the Bush era. That’s exactly the outcome rational people would have guessed until some mental midget from the right attempted to suggest the Clinton era produced more military deaths than the Bush-43 era….with lap dogs like you instantly parroting the false information and making it that much more fun to watch you twist in the wind after the real numbers come out to discredit you.

    It’s not my fault that you are so far removed from your mind that your own data disproves your thesis, yet you still proclaim me to be the one on the receiving end of defeat. I honestly welcome you to present even more statistical data that directly contradicts your hysterical bloviations in the future. It makes it so much easier on my part when conservatives insist upon proving themselves wrong.

  18. Eracus says:

    Mark, you are here now demonstrating precisely the pathology I predicted above: You simply refuse to accept any contrary information, no matter how factually accurate it is, and instead immediately set about attacking its source.

    The statistical evidence clearly shows there were more military fatalities under Clinton during “peacetime” than there have been under Bush fighting a two-front war. That is a fact. That is the reality. There is no ambiguity. Any confusion is entirely yours, which, as predicted, is the pathological response of your delusional state and mental disorder.

    It is the reason there is no point in discussing anything with you, and most likely why nobody else ever bothers to comment on this blog.

    Have a nice day.

  19. Mark says:

    Eracus, are you seriously this removed from reality and simple coherence? Are you honestly trying to suggest that 2004 (where the chart you linked had its last available data) was the final year of the Bush administration? And that there hasn’t been more than 2,000 military casualties under the Bush administration in 2005, 2006, and five months of 2007? Are you seriously dumb enough to be suggesting that only four years of the Bush administration can be counted versus eight years worth of Clinton administration? Did the world end in 2004, Eracus? In your mind, it seemed to end in 1904, the heyday of the Gilded Age when your worldview was celebrated.

    In eight years of the Clinton administration, active-duty military deaths totaled 6,301. In the FIRST four years of the Bush administration of the Bush administration, the total was 5,194. In the two and a half years SINCE then, there have been more than 2,000 military casualties in the Bush administration. Since you’re incapable of doing the addition of 5,194 + 2,000 in your head, get out a calculator and see if you can muster up the brainpower to punch in the numbers and discover that the Bush administration is now far ahead of the Clinton administration in total military casualties….with a year and a half of the Bush administration still ahead. Is that calculus too complex for you, Eracus? It sure seems to be the case.

    Ultimately, this is an irrelevant discussion. You’re the one who raised the inaccurate statistic of more active-duty deaths under the Clinton administration than the Bush administration, you got burned with reality in your would-be Perry Mason moment, and rather than simply admitting that you and the right-wing echo chamber got this one wrong, you attempt to tell me that 7,194 (and counting) is less than 6,301. Not only are you hopeless, you’re an idiot.

  20. Eracus says:

    Mark, you are here now demonstrating precisely the pathology I predicted above: You simply refuse to accept any contrary information, no matter how factually accurate it is, and instead immediately set about attacking its source.

    The statistical evidence clearly shows there were more military fatalities under Clinton during “peacetime” than there have been under Bush fighting a two-front war. That is a fact. That is the reality. There is no ambiguity. Any confusion is entirely yours, which, as predicted, is the pathological response of your delusional state and mental disorder.

    It is the reason there is no point in discussing anything with you, and most likely why nobody else ever bothers to comment on this blog.

    Have a nice day…

  21. Will says:

    Mark wins. Go home, Eracus.

  22. Eracus says:

    Maybe if you can’t add or read, Will, but according to the U.S. Department of Defense there were a total of 7514 military fatalities under Clinton. To date (May’07) military fatalities under Bush total 7326. Facts are stubborn things.

    http://www.icasualties.org/oif/US_chart.aspx

  23. Will says:

    Congratulations on finding a source that actually supports your thesis, Eracus. That’s a big improvement from the last one.

  24. Jay Reding says:

    Of course, counting casualties is a piss-poor way of looking at things to begin with. (Personally, if we’re going to look at the butcher’s bill, I’d rather look at the enemy’s. There’s a reason why al-Qaeda hasn’t pulled off another attack on the US. It’s rather hard to do so when your operatives end up being identified from pieces in small bags.)

    We lost over 3,000 troops at Slapton Sands in a single training exercise before D-Day. We lost 54,000 US troops in Vietnam. After nearly six years of warfare, to lose only 7326 out of a military of hundreds of thousands is not a point of horror, it’s an example of why we’re better at saving the lives of our soldiers than anyone else. Each death is still a tragedy, but this could have been a hell of a lot worse.

    The big problem is that using statistics is a way of dehumanizing our own soldiers. The left doesn’t want to talk about who died, what they died for, and how they died. That would raise all sorts of unpleasant questions for them — it’s far easier to turn someone into a political prop when you don’t know their story. For instance, Casey Sheehan’s death is less of a political story when one realize that he volunteered to go into Sadr City, and died trying to save his comrades. Instead of being a bloody shirt to wave around, he’d be the hero that he is, and it’s a hell of a lot harder to misappropriate the memory of someone who died as a hero than another faceless “victim.”

  25. Eracus says:

    They are the same source (DoD), just from different time periods. They include all military fatalities, in all theaters, whatever the COD. The fact remains there were more military fatalities under Clinton neglecting American security interests than there have been under Bush defending them.

    Not that basic facts, the public record, or common sense means anything these days…