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Old 07-12-2018, 12:22 PM   #1 (permalink)
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No, the Mythical "Center" Isn't Sexy

Taibbi: No, the Mythical "Center" Isn't Sexy.

The Republican pitch was an open con: the CEO sect hoovering Middle American votes by trotting out xenophobic Bible-thumpers who waved the flag and pretended to love beer, chainsaws, snowmobiles and shooting foreigners, while mostly just deregulating the economy.

The Democratic pitch revolved around social issues like choice and was far less transparently fraudulent. But the party’s proponents had one bad habit that kept putting them in a hole.
Repeatedly, when asked to make policy changes favored by sizable majorities of Democratic voters (and often by majorities of all voters), party leaders said: We can’t do that: we need to win!

Remember when a majority of Democrats were against the Iraq war, but 29 Democratic Senators still ended up voting to give Bush the power to invade? Remember when, five years later, a war-weary 82 percent of Democrats wanted out of Iraq, but Nancy Pelosi said it was necessary to keep authorizing funds for the war to “support the troops” and “not leave them in harm’s way”?

Votes like this were always explained in terms of expediency, i.e., what was necessary to conquer the middle and win elections. On war issues especially, it was like Bill Clinton said: Scared people would “rather have someone strong and wrong than weak and right.” If Dems wanted to get back in power, they had to shelve conscience, at least temporarily, and embrace pragmatism.

But Iraq turned out to be a disaster, morally and politically. The party would have been better off listening to its voters. Party support of the invasion was based on fictitious pragmatic concerns, as were many positions it would take in defiance of constituents.

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Old 07-12-2018, 12:33 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Lamb, whose aw-shucks handsomeness recalls a Band of Brothers extra, is the wet dream of new establishment Democrats. He’s ex-military, a father, flexible on guns, without a ton of political experience and with a working class background (without the working class politics).
This Lamb guy sounds like the poster boy for what the GOP/Conservatives should be.
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Old 07-12-2018, 07:43 PM   #3 (permalink)
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The Democrats *are* the center. There is no left.
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Old 07-13-2018, 01:41 AM   #4 (permalink)
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This is another example of NY Times relentless "both sides" bullshit.
The recollection of history is not correct. Senators didn't exactly vote to declare war outright in the first place - it was marketed to Congress as a strategy that was meant to force concessions from Iraq by having military intervention pre-approved if they were not.

I can believe many on the left were against that war from the start, including most reading here, but even an outright majority of Democrats being against it I don't believe for a minute. I've seen the same people decrying the war after knowing more later on, despite first believing WMDs would be found to justify it.

There were polls at the time that are being ignored. Slightly more than half of Americans were always in favor of invading if our "conditions" weren't met, with as much as 71% only days before.
Media polls on the Iraq War between 2003 and 2007 | PolitiFact

It's just as bad to say Pelosi was wrong to agree to any abrupt ending, especially when leaving most forces the way we did made it too easy to revert back into violent chaos. There was no easy walk-away route once we went in. No single member of Congress, no readers here or armchair pundit can know how to do that right without planning with professionals and experts on the issues and people local to those areas.

NY Times along with most major media outlets have decided that just about every political story now has to be presented in a way to find blame with both sides of the aisle, no matter what the subject is. There are enough examples of this to fill a thread of its own.
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