Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Fighting With Yourself

Here are some thoughts about some acts of brazen punditry that I ran across recently:
  • Thomas Oliphant in the Boston Globe - The always perceptive and interesting Tom Oliphant has an good take on some of the growing noise on the 2006 midterm elections. Basically, he points out (and rightly so) that it is interesting that the GOP is pushing for a lot of outsider candidates, rather than their tried-and-trues. This, for me, shows that the GOP has no political capital left (thank President Bush for that), and their decisions in some of these races is questionable. Katherine Harris in Florida? I mean, come on. After the 2000 recount fiasco, no one should even take her seriously. The GOP would do well to find someone else. He also mirrors something that I have thought all along, that being that there could be a serious challenger to Hillary Clinton for the Senate seat in New York (while I don't think it is Jeanine Pirro). It is such a state of contrasts: two Democratic Senators, a Republican governor and a two consecutive Republican mayors of NYC. With all of these people from New York wrapped up in possible national aspirations, there could be a more interesting race than anticipated.
  • Frank Rich in the New York Times - Rich is more opposition to President Bush than the Democrats have ever been, and he continues to prove it. He has an excellent point about the shifting of public opinion against the war and the fact that Bush has lost any capital that he earned with his re-election. Americans are unhappy about the lies and lack of strategy, or that is at least how it seems. I don't agree, however, with his use of analogies of LBJ and Vietnam. As a historian, I could not disagree more with the notion that history repeats itself. History can never really repeat itself; things that are similar happen because we are human and predictable and our systems are set up to react in certain ways. Vietnam was in a different time with different circumstances and different leaders. You cannot base your arguments on the fact that GWB and LBJ were both from Texas and they were president during wars that became unpopular. It ends there and Rich overstepped his rhetorical bounds in suggesting otherwise.
  • Jonah Goldberg in National Review - Ever think that the pundits on the left were the only ones who insult and deride regular people and tell them that they don't matter? Well, here is contrary proof to that. It is just this sort of talk that proves two things. Firstly, people don't care about the world around them and the bozos at the helm because people like Goldberg tell them that they don't matter. Secondly, and more importantly, it should anger people enough to make themselves matter. Share your opinions (after doing your homework, naturally). Start to take moves to make change happen. Some good old fashioned conciousness raising couldn't hurt. Don't let the haughty editors of National Review tell you that you don't matter and that your opinions are not important. Shout so loud that you CANNOT be ignored!

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