Why The Democrats Are Hurting National Security – Yet Again

Real Clear Politics has an absolutely brilliant commentary on the Democrat’s charges against the Bush Administration. The Democrats are criticizing the President for using information which was uncertain at the time in deciding an issue of policy.

Earth to the Democrats: Intelligence is never certain.

If the Democrats want to establish that the President has to second-guess every piece of intelligence that crosses their desk they are irreparably harming national security. As President, you have the final say in policy, and you have to trust the intelligence you get. In a crisis, you do not have time for recriminations and second-guessing. You do not have the time to start questioning your intelligence – in today’s world, you have to act or lives can be lost.

The precedent the Democrats would establish would leave the President walking on eggshells in regards to US intelligence. If we recieve intelligence that the North Koreans are preparing to fire a nuclear-armed missile at Tokyo in 24 hours, you do not have time to second guess that information. As President, if you delay, you could be responsible for millions of lives. Would the Democrats really like to establish that precedent?

Real Clear Politics puts it bluntly:

According to Krugman, the Bush administration is to be held accountable both for not being sufficiently alarmist with respect to intelligence estimates prior to 9/11 and then for being unduly alarmist with those same intelligence estimates after 9/11.

Think about the absurdity and hypocrisy of this for a moment: Krugman wants to vilify the Bush administration for not piecing together scraps of intelligence, speculation and theory to "predict and prevent" a one-in-a-million terrorist attack scenario and then turn around and vilify the administration when they take seriously intelligence reports – reports that the British government continues to stand by even to this very moment – that Hussein attempted to purchase material to make a nuclear bomb.

RCP concludes that this attempt to "gotcha!" the Bush Administration is going to backfire on the Democrats. I tend to agree, although the "BUSH LIED" theme will be repeated ad nauseam by the radical Left right along with "no blood for oil" and other mindless slogans. However, the real political impact of this non-scandal can easily be minimized if the President simply sticks to his guns and holds his ground. The Democrats scurrilous accusations are more examples of how they have a tin ear towards critical matters of national security policy.

17 thoughts on “Why The Democrats Are Hurting National Security – Yet Again

  1. It’s absolutely amazing how conservatives can spin Bush’s intelligence manipulations into “Democrats harming our national security” for merely calling attention to the lies. Even Clinton’s most loyal apologists couldn’t come close to rivaling the eerie disciple-worship complex people like yourself have over George Bush regardless of what he does or has done.

    Whether the public and media will have the stones to hold Bush accountable for his sins remains to be seen, or if they merely roll over in response to Bush’s ongoing ploy of wielding “patriotism” as a sledgehammer to smash dissenters in the mouths.

    Honestly, it wouldn’t surprise me if the Bush administration knew about the 9-11 attacks in advance and let them happen, merely accepting them as collateral damage that would enable the pursuit of a right-wing agenda they would otherwise not have had the political support to carry out. Just look at all the gains that radical conservatives have been able to make in the 9-11 aftermath. They’re in the process of returning to a Cold War era military complex, complete with a new federal payola, er, department of “Homeland Security”….a department whose introduction allowed Bush to weaken collective bargaining rights for Federal employees and eventually enable him to outsource half of current federal jobs to part-time, uninsured workers. They’re able to defend any military deployment under the guise of “fighting terrorism” and accuse any who dare challenge the premise of “pre-emptive war” of “not caring about the security of Americans”. Then of course, the 9-11 attack injured the economy…which in turn suppressed revenue….which will in turn de-fund government. Taking advantage of American gluttony with a “tax cut of the month” policy accelerates that appalling trend.

    This is not necessarily an accusation, just an observation of a convenient coincidence. It sure does seem like the conservatives had alot to gain for only having to sacrifice the lives of 3,000 New York liberals.

  2. Don’t give us that line of bullshit that you’re not accusing the President. You know damn well what you’re insinuating, and you know it’s load of crap.

    It’s an idiotic argument to make, and it shows that you’re willing to suspend all logic and commmon sense in favor of blind partisanship. If you are so consumed with blind hatred for the President that you really believe such an accusation than you are not thinking at all.

    You should be ashamed.

  3. Honestly, it wouldn’t surprise me if the Bush administration knew about the 9-11 attacks in advance and let them happen, merely accepting them as collateral damage that would enable the pursuit of a right-wing agenda they would otherwise not have had the political support to carry out.

    Honestly, it wouldn’t surprise me if you knew that you were posting a load of crap, merely accepting your own posts as collateral damage to the truth that would enable the pursuit of your left-wing agenda you would otherwise not have the support of logic to advance.

    Just look at all the gains that radical conservatives have been able to make in the 9-11 aftermath.

    Look at the gains firefighters and cops made. Over time pay, glory, advancing their professions, etc. Will you claim that New York firefighters and cops were behind 9-11?

  4. Mark, if you were a boxer, you’d be 0-125, all KO’s.

    It comes from leading with your chin. Statements like “it wouldn’t surprise me if the Bush administration knew about the 9-11 attacks in advance and let them happen, merely accepting them as collateral damage” are inflammatory at least, and at worst signs of the sort of incivility that kills rational debate.

    And illogic! I mean, Bush is “the dumb one” – do you think he’d be the one that could, in our open society and in a Washington chock full of political opponents, pull off letting 9/11 happen? We can’t even keep a lid on nuclear secrets – so how does Bush magically get away with murder by omission?

    Criminy, people, Bush must be a real miracle worker – an idiot, but capable of carrying off the greatest subterfuge in history.

    Mark (heh heh) my words – this is going to backfire on the Dems.

  5. Somehow I knew this post would get some panties in a bunch, most likely because the thought has probably crossed your mind as well and you hate to see it become discusssion fodder. Either way, I reject the notion that speculation is tantamount to accusation. I would never go on a podium and profess this hypothesis as fact, but if were a defense attorney and this were a jury trial, I would certainly present the possibility in court to establish reasonable doubt.

    Jay, it’s ironic that you scold me about “attacking a person on a subject not germane to the topic at hand” when I was making these comments in an effort to prove you were doing the same thing in your flimsy and idiotic attempt to blame Bush’s intelligence manipulation on “Democrats hurting national security.” That, my friend, was the original “subject not germane to the topic at hand” in this thread.

    Monkey, due to mandatory budget cuts resulting in the revenue deficiencies brought about in large part by gluttonous tax cuts, these same “heroes” are now receiving pink slips in cities all across the county. Even for those keeping their jobs, Bush is in the process of giving these “heroes” a one-finger salute instead of a 21-gun salute by eliminating their overtime benefits. So to answer your question, NO. Civil servants are not the beneficiaries from large-scale terrorist attacks that embolden right-wing nationalistic values. The people constantly seeking to impair civil servants livelihoods are the beneficiaries.

    Mitch, is my statement really any less “inflammatory” and “incivil to the point of killing rational debate” that Jay’s fantasy of Bush’s massive intelligence snafu being the fault of “Democrats who are hurting national security”? I never accused Bush of being stupid. I don’t think he has the policy know-how or the resume to qualify him for the White House, but he does have a marketing savvy that allows him to sell his “stupidity” as an asset, allowing him to rise just above the low expectations he sets for himself by merely showing up.

    Even if I were to believe that Bush is as dumb as he wants people to believe he is (a trap too many Dems consistently fall for to their political peril) the true evil genius comes from the people around him. With deep-rooted connections to the ghosts of administrations past at his fingertips, the “outsider” from Texas during the 2000 campaign was able to recruit Washington’s most muscular heavyweights who know how to spin even the most ridiculous ideas into successful policy initiatives. Given the Machiavellian brilliance (yes, they ARE smart) of this administration at political maneuvering, a cover-up to the caliber that you are discussing would not be beyond the realm of possibility. Still unlikely, perhaps. But if anyone has the ability and complete absence of ethics to pull it off, it’s these guys.

    Beyond that, to say that “this” is gonna backfire for the Dems infers that someone other than myself is suggesting it. Clearly, this is not the case as most Dems are so awestruck by the Bush’s administration undeserved popularity that they are too busy dittoing everything Bush says and does…and they’re certainly not making public accusations to the caliber of what I merely suggested.

  6. There’s a reason why (most) Democratic politicians aren’t making charges like you made. It has something to do with such charges being blatantly stupid, transparently false, and slanderous. However, I wouldn’t count on such tact lasting long. Sooner or later one of the Democrats will make just such an accusation outside of the far-left press, and that Democrat will watch as the DNC burns for it – and rightly they should.

    Furthermore, this sinister cabal nonsense is precisely that. Again, if you want to argue that someone September 11 was some conspiracy on the part of the GOP, I’ve got a cooler full of frozen aliens to sell you…

  7. Only the most loyal Republican myrmidon could blame Bush’s self-inflicted wounds from manipulating intelligence information on “Democrats hurting national security”, and then have the balls to accuse anyone else of saying something “blatantly stupid”. I do regret saying this at this point, if only that it has enabled you to avoid talking about the revised $455 billion 2004 Republican deficit….a figure that will likely be revised upward even further before plateauing.

  8. Blaming the Bush administration for lay-off notices for cops and firemen is the current Democrat lie, and one they have used here in California since Proposition 13 protected retirees from being forced out of their homes. There is NEVER a real restraint on spending until a state is broke, then, in order to elevate the fear, the publisized layoffs are cops and firefighters. Horsehit. The State’s went on a spending spree in the 1990’s, and now some cannot sober up.

  9. Mark, exactly what does this discussion of national security have to do with the deficit? (Which is a result of out of control entitlement spending, but that’s a separate issue.)

    Typically Democratic tactic – don’t argue the facts, just keep changing the subject and make scurrilous accusations. Too bad it’s become so hackneyed now that everyone sees right past it.

  10. How is there even an argument here? Ok lets break this down chronilogically(sp?):

    1. Niger uranium reports are made well over a year ago.
    2. Reports are discovered to be total crap soon after.
    3. Much later Bush uses reports in the SotU knowing they were total crap to create a horseshit nuclear threat from Saddam. (If he didn’t know, then he deserves seriously bad marks for negligence.)
    4. Bush is exposed. Mayhem ensues. Fun is had by all.

    Do I have my Niger uranium reports confused perhaps? Where the hell am I wrong?

  11. James, the states did go on a spending spree in the 1990’s and the recklessness of spending in the primarily Republican statehouses in America at this time should definitely be held accountable. Keep in mind, however, that these same Republican statehouses were on an equally profligate tax cutting spree in the 1990’s, “giving the money back to the people who paid it in.” Here in Minnesota, we had modest tax rebates from former Governor Jesse Ventura, who now seems like the embodiment of sanity in comparison to the sewer rat who rests his head in the Minnesota Governor’s mansion today. This same sewer rat was the leader of the Republican State House during Ventura’s tenure and pissed and moaned incessantly about how Ventura’s tax cuts didn’t go far enough and were too weighted towards the average person and not heavily enough towards his Eagan neighbors. Fast forward back to the present tense and Minnesota is in the first of at least a two-year nightmare trying to balance one of the biggest deficits in the country because the sewer rat got his way in the final Ventura session and failed to take the necessary steps to alleviate an impending crisis that Ventura wanted to nip in the bud….and in so doing inherited the ruins himself and has been able to do even more damage. And yes, part of that damage has been layoffs to police and firefighters, particularly in rural and urban areas that the suburbanite Republicans care about least.

    Jay, this discussion doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with the deficit, just as Bush’s foolish judgment in manipulating intelligence information has nothing to do with “Democrats hurting national security,” but I was merely alluding to the fact that focusing your fury on my statements about Bush and 9-11 helped you pull off your usual “if it’s not news that confirms my worldview, I will pretend it doesn’t exist” approach. Bob Graham mistakenly cites the word deceit as having five letters instead of six and it takes you a matter of seconds to run his name through the mud, but the Republican deficit rises to at least $455 billion for 2003 and it doesn’t even warrant your mention. This approach makes anything you say impossible to take seriously, much more so than my halfhearted speculation of Bush allowing 9-11 to happen.

    As for entitlement spending driving the deficit, that’s another bald-faced lie that further weakens your credibility. Unless the latest Medicare entitlement (which I agree is foolish) is factored into the 2003 deficit, there has been no real growth in entitlement spending during the Bush administration. Social spending would most likely come in a distant fourth on the list of causes of the deficit.

    Shrinking revenues from a dreary economy is the biggest cause, and is largely out of the hands of anyone, although I suspect Bush wants to keep the economy down for as long as possible for the benefit (at least benefit for him and the GOP) of bankrupting government through diminished revenues. Second place on the causes of deficit would be the increase in military, some of which is justified, but the rest of which is both mindless and reckless. The war in Iraq looks to be costliest of the latter category while the Homeland Security Department looks to be the most dubious and pointless. Thirdly, we had one tax cut, then another tax cut, and then another tax cut…two of which were during wartime when revenue is already sinking into an abyss of record deficits. The worst thing about the tax cuts is that they will suppress revenue growth even when the economy does rise out of its funk, ensuring continued 12-figure deficits (if not 13-figures) as far as they eye can see.

    Contrary to your fairy tale, we did not entitlement-spend our way from a $200 billion surplus to a $450 billion deficit in three short years. I think you recognize that Bush is in serious political trouble from all corners right now, and even if certain things improve and others go away, he’ll most likely be wearing a trillion-dollar deficit cross on his back in the heat of 2004 campaign. That alone is gonna make it hard for anyone sane to justify his re-election.

  12. Alex: The President cited a British report on Saddam and African uranium. The British have stated that their information is unrelated to the forged documents, instead coming from an unnamed Western European intelligence agency (likely to be either France or Germany). You (and most of the media) do have your Niger uranium reports confused. (Yes, it is confusing, but the media has the obligation to set the record straight on this matter.)

    Mark: Your first contention is that Gov. Pawlenty is responsible for the budgetary crisis, despite the fact that he has only been governor for six months and the budget was already in the red before he took power. Furthermore, for that entire period, the Minnesota State Senate was in the hands of the Democrats, and the state’s spending is largely due to Democratic initiatives. Your ad hominem attack against the governor does not even remotely fit the facts.

    Your second contention is equally ridiculous. I have dealt with the deficit several times on this site, and will continue to do so as the situation warrants. However, government budgets are based on projections, and the current deficit is a result of the economic downturn more than any other factor. The priority for policymakers should be to increase economic growth and address the core issues that are leading to the economic slowdown and cut spending. Tax cuts help boost economic growth (and government revenue as was amply demostrated in both 1962 and 1984). However, neither party is exercising the required amount of fiscal restraint.

    Your third contention is that Bush wants the economy to be down so as to starve the government of revenue. Yet you offer absolutely nothing to support this contention other than your wild-eyed conspiracy theories. There is absolutely no substance behind that argument and it is representative of nothing more than your own personal paranoia.

    Your forth contention is that entitlement spending isn’t responsible for the government downturn. In the short term, entitlement spending isn’t the biggest factor – the overall economic downturn is. However, according to the Congressional Budget Office’s own figures by 2030 the amount spent on Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid will reach 15% of the national GDP. This is 75% of the current amount of federal spending as a percentage of GDP. Clearly the growth of entitlement spending brought on by an aging population is the number one long-term budgetary problem that the country must face in the future.

  13. Pawlenty was the single biggest factor to the severity of the 2003-2004 Minnesota budget crisis, but I’ll grant you that Democrat Roger Moe was a close second. In the 2001-2002 session, both leaders of their respective Houses were eyeing the Governor’s seat and, as Ventura correctly pointed out himself, their top priority was trying to make Ventura look bad since he was the first bridge they had to burn on their journey to the Governor’s mansion. The unelectable Moe foolishly signed on to the Republicans’ “do nothing” approach to a pending budget meltdown under the fallacy that it would make his candidacy easier, and manipulated the majority of the Democratic Senate to avoid taking any mild steps that would ease the inevitable pain of the next session.

    I never thought a radical like Pawlenty would be electable even in the increasingly conservative Minnesota, but at the same time, knew that Moe wasn’t gonna be perceived too favorably among suburban yuppies, so I thought moderate Tim Penny would win by default. The second Penny’s numbers started dropping, the most frightening possible scenario was about to become a reality…even after Pawlenty’s campaign fraud went unnoticed. To summarize, Pawlenty’s agenda for Minnesota in the good times would have proven even more cumbersome for the state than our current financial woes had it not been for the checks-and-balances provided by Ventura and Moe. However, Moe’s piggybacking on the Pawlenty agenda in hopes of crushing Ventura’s credibility before the 2002 election ultimately injured the DFL and Minnesota’s short-term and long-term financial situation and quality-of-life. Pawlenty wins. Minnesota loses. That’s been the tragic ending to the last two legislative sessions, the first when Pawlenty was House Majority Leader and the second when he was Governor.

    It’s futile trying to talk economic reality with supply-side ideologues who continue to insist black and white even as a new round of evidence shoots more holes into their philosophical sieve. I think you better dust off them history books that show taxes were increased (albeit regressively) in 1982 after the first year of Reagan tax cuts proved disastrous for the budget. Yes, the economic cycle did improve by the mid-1980s (although certainly not for devastated working people)and revenue did go up, but much more due to the end of the oil crisis than any of Reagan’s budget-busting tax cuts, and not nearly as fast as Reagan managed to spend it.

    Bush’s actions present a clear pattern of trying to bankrupt government. To whatever extent his administration is preserving social spending can be attributed to pre-election pandering to people whose throats he intends to cut in a second term…and accepting the reality that signing on to spending initiatives like new Medicare entitlements, while still hyperinflating military spending and passing new tax cuts only a near weekly basis, will accelerate the bankruptcy of the federal government. This will force the sorts of social program destruction that Republicans have unsuccessfully tried to derail for decades. People like Bush who have resented Medicare and Social Security, and any program that helps poor people their entire lives don’t simply expand these programs without having alterior motives.

    At least you’re retracting your previous lie, although not exactly in a forthcoming manner. Above in this thread, you stated that our deficit is the result of “out-of-control entitlement spending”. It’s big of you to at least let go of that fraudulent statement…and it would be nice if Bush would confess to his own rhetorical indiscretions. I don’t dispute the long-term disaster we’re facing with Social Security and Medicare, although the quality of life for the average American is likely to be so badly battered from global market forces by the time the crisis is upon us that Medicare and Social Security preservation will probably be the least of our worries. Retirement program funding is something that will eventually work itself out, although most likely through some predatory private retirement plan that will have fewer participants than the current national plan, and will swallow up the retirement savings of many of those who do participate in it. I’m far more worried about the real-world prospect of the outward migration of employment that provides the jobs necessary for people to retire from.

  14. Mark,

    I know that, whenever in an argument with one or more left-of-center person, the person farthest to the right is always a “radical” or “extremist” or “boogeyman”.

    But calling Tim Pawlenty a “radical” is ludicrous. Simple fiscal conservatism is hardly “radical”, unless you believe the sole purpose of government is to keep government fully funded and growing at all costs.

    Tim Pawlenty is a “radical” only in a world purely informed by DFL cant.

  15. Mitch, Tim Pawlenty would not necessarily have been a radical if he’d lived in Texas or Georgia. However, in Minnesota, a Governor who disregards the state’s upward mobility in quality of life that was made possible through the collective sacrifices of civic-minded citizens of previous generations, and instead is willing to dismantle that to keep his Eagan neighbors from paying any additional taxes, is indeed a radical. Perhaps the people of Minnesota have shifted to embrace this radical viewpoint as well, but that doesn’t make Pawlenty any less of a radical for being their mouthpiece in a state whose success has been the product of the exact opposite approach Pawlenty is taking.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.