Thursday, January 11, 2007

"The Incompetence Dodge"

Eric Alterman cuts the neo-con conventional wisdom crowd and the pundits who love them down to size, as only Alterman can.
The problem the war creates for the punditocracy and the rest of the political establishment is twofold. First, the leaders they backed have not only been wildly incompetent but also impervious to reality. Offered a face-saving exit by the Baker Commission, Bush, Cheney & Co. prefer instead to double down on disaster. Second, there is the problem of the pundits' individual reputations. If William Kristol, Charles Krauthammer, Lawrence Kaplan and David Brooks et al. are so smart, why were they so wrong about something so crucial? And why, given their sorry records, do they and their editors still think anybody ought to keep listening to them? At the very least, those they misled are entitled to an explanation.
I'm afraid I have to blow a tiny hole in his argument. Not that I'm that any big opinion maker, but I am guilty of "equating Guantánamo with the Gulag" and I do hold that "the real threat to human rights comes from the White House rather than Al Qaeda." And while I don't "equate the conservative leadership of a great democracy with dictatorship," neither do I believe we have a conservative leader and I have repeatedly equated this White House with a dictatorship.

Nonetheless, the piece is a great slapdown of the oh so wrong Righterazzi of the pundit class who are trying to make themselves look right, by making us look wrong. Unfortunately, as Eric points out, the unhappy result of their obstinate unwillingness to admit their mistakes in order to save their sorry reputations, is a whole lot of dead and damaged soldiers.
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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've noticed this too. Also, their perpetual whining about how horrible muslims are simply reinforces the idea that we should get the hell out of the middle east. it makes their prescriptions for war quit obviously counter intutitive

6:34:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

I find their precriptions for war more delusional than anything.

8:39:00 PM  

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