Big Tent on the Radio: The Dems and Iraq

I'm always the last to know. From a diary at Daily Kos:

And today you have the opportunity to listen to [Big Tent Democrat, aka Armando on] On Topic at Political Nexus.  The show will begin tonight at 5pm PST (8pm EST)--those who wish to listen live can do so at the "On Topic" BlogTalkRadio page (the only show currently listed is the one we did with MSOC on abortion; it will appear when the show goes live.)  Otherwise, you can access the archives of the show either at Political Nexus or at the BlogTalkRadio On Topic page.

Among the topics we'll be discussing during the half-hour show include:


  • What was the Democratic strategy on the Iraq Supplemental going in?  Was the capitulation always in the works, or was it the product of an inability to secure enough votes from conservative Democrats?
  • Regardless of the actual consequences for Iraq and our troops, why was the capitulation bill such a bad move politically?
  • Democrats are currently banking on the "helpless bystander" theory that the Congress has no power to curb the Executive on Iraq.  Will this fly with the American Public?  If not, why not?
  • If we could force the Democrats to vote any way you wanted, would we have them simply defund the Occupation?
  • Where do we go from here?  What should the Democrats do come September--and what do we expect them to do?
  • How will the Republicans handle all of this?  Can they get out in front of Democrats to oppose Bush on Iraq?  Will they even try?
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    Thanks. (5.00 / 2) (#1)
    by oculus on Tue Jun 12, 2007 at 06:46:11 PM EST

    Nice move, oculus. (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by Edger on Tue Jun 12, 2007 at 07:34:35 PM EST
    Great quote from Armando at 5:45 PST (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by Edger on Tue Jun 12, 2007 at 08:04:33 PM EST
    paraphrased: "We are the left wing of the democratic party. If we cave in at the gate [on pressuring to do the right thing and end the occupation], no democratic politician is going to be able to stand firm."

    He also made a very strong point earlier that 6 years out no republican is going to have a chance trying to run against a democrat by criticizing him/her because s/he stood firm against the occupation and for defunding and ending it.

    Here's another: (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by Compound F on Tue Jun 12, 2007 at 08:51:25 PM EST
    and I paraphrase:

    If Democrats do the right thing before the election, they will be rewarded.

    I agree: It's smart politically and from a policy standpoint.

    My corollary, of course, is that if they do nothing, or worse, if war breaks out in Iran, they must be punished.  Unlike others, I refuse to say, "There is zero chance I will vote for non-Democrats,"  because without consequences for defection, one cannot have cooperation.


    Defunding Iraq (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by Edger on Tue Jun 12, 2007 at 09:06:03 PM EST
    92% in favor so far. Vote the poll here.

    "Farfetched" according to an AP (none / 0) (#31)
    by oculus on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 10:37:30 AM EST
    article yesterday.  The article also stated Reid spoke on the phone recently with a group of "leading bloggers" about their displeasure with Congress's failures re Iraq.  

    What is farfetched? n/t (none / 0) (#32)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 10:51:05 AM EST
    Defunding, per AP. Article did not (none / 0) (#36)
    by oculus on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 11:02:20 AM EST

    Maybe farfetched (none / 0) (#39)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 11:13:29 AM EST
    that it will happen soon. But it will happen at some point. It always does. No war has ever lasted forever.

    That's the funny thing (none / 0) (#40)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 11:15:35 AM EST
    about people who oppose doing it.

    They are arguing from a position that the occupation is never ending. IOW, they are in a sense disconnected from reality.


    Not only bloggers are "displeased" (none / 0) (#34)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 10:57:49 AM EST
    and not only the left.

    Maj. Robert Hanafin (Ret.) at Veterans For America wrote a post back in April: Quickest Way Democrats LOSE Military Family and Veteran VOTES! as his response to the supplemental being introduced earlier this year:

    They sure as hell BETTER find a more tactful way of deflating the situation, because first off (1) an insignificant percentage of this anti-Iraqinam war movement are so-called LIBERALS and a significant number ARE former conservatives that answered the wake up call while too many Demoplicans voted to give President Bush the authority to invade and occupy Iraq, and STILL HAVE NOT taken that authority (it is called the War Powers Act) back. Too many Demoplicans are still a sleep at the reins of our government, which anti-Iraq war sentiment that goes way beyond the anti-Iraqinam war movement, gave you control of Congress in the first place WAKE the hell up!

    YOU are going to have to do much better than this or Hillary will not even make it through the primaries much less to the White House

    He also linked in that post to my March 13 post Seeing Through Pelosi's Charade - Kill The Iraq War Supplemental Spending Bill

    I was happy to learn that Reid (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by oculus on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 11:06:10 AM EST
    talked to "some" displeased bloggers, who were not identified in yesterday's AP article.  

    Interesting program, I thought. Full of (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by oculus on Tue Jun 12, 2007 at 08:18:54 PM EST
    information and strictly "on topic," i.e., how may the Congress get the U.S. military out of Iraq.  Well done.  

    Thanks for warning us in advance BTD! (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by andgarden on Tue Jun 12, 2007 at 10:58:42 PM EST

    The Silence of the Bombs (none / 0) (#7)
    by Edger on Tue Jun 12, 2007 at 10:25:23 PM EST
    Norman Solomon
    Three years have passed since most Americans came to the conclusion that the Iraq war was a "mistake." Reporting the results of a Gallup poll in June 2004, USA Today declared: "It is the first time since Vietnam that a majority of Americans has called a major deployment of US forces a mistake." And public opinion continued to move in an antiwar direction. But such trends easily coexist with a war effort becoming even more horrific.
    Faith that American might makes right is apt to be especially devout among those who command the world's most powerful military - and have the option of trying to overcome wartime obstacles by unleashing even more lethal violence.

    These days, there's a lot of talk about seeking a political solution in Iraq - but the Bush administration and the military leaders who answer to the commander in chief are fundamentally engaged in a very different sort of project. Looking ahead, from the White House, the key goal is to seem to be winding down the U.S. war effort while actually reconfiguring massive violence to make it more effective.
    Meanwhile, the Iraqis killed by Americans don't become much of an issue in the realms of US media and politics. News coverage provides the latest tallies of Iraqis who die from "sectarian violence" and "terrorist attacks," but the reportage rarely discusses how the US occupation has been an ascending catalyst for that carnage. It's even more rare for the coverage to focus on the magnitude of Iraqi deaths that are direct results of American firepower.

    So now i know (none / 0) (#9)
    by Stewieeeee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 01:16:51 AM EST
    the fundamental difference.  the nexus of disagreement is in how different people view politicians.

    BTD spent the first few minutes discussing how he views politicians.

    "The do whatever they can get away with."

    Basically, politicians might have personal convictions but ultimately what they say and how they vote is determined not primarily by those convictions but primarily by pressures placed on them by the usual cast of characters in american politics.  the base.  independents.  moderates.  special interest groups.  etc. etc.

    and i don't know.  maybe that's true of some politicians.  i think maybe joe biden's convictions might run counter to some of the things that are in the bankruptcy bill, but there you have all those credit card companies employing thousands of people in delaware.  

    but i do think, in the case of someone i keep bringing up, jim webb, this view of politicians becomes less applicable.

    if it really came down to a choice between doing something that he honestly thought would be bad for his son and getting defeated in the next election, i would think the headache of american politics wouldn't be worth it to him.

    furthermore, while i'm sure i will be called naive for saying this, if it was proven that politicians only do what they think they can get away with, then i would want a different kind of politician altogether.

    decisions are of course important, and they should not be made based on political pressures.  i don't want politicians making decisions because their phones were flooded with 50,000 phone calls of irate voters who promised to work the phones for them ever again during election season.

    to use an example, i don't think a politician should support a cap on carbon emissions because they would pay a political price for not doing so.  i think they should support a cap on carbon emissions because the science dictates that our planet can not survive at the current rate.

    by the same token, regarding the best way to end the war, if a politician has consulted with generals or prevailed upon their own expertise in a given field, in this case the military, then i think a decision based on those things should overule the pressures placed on them by the voters.

    Don't you think (none / 0) (#10)
    by Alien Abductee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 03:58:00 AM EST
    politicians are influenced by the input they get? For the most part they can't make decisions based on their own grasp of the issues. No one has the expertise to make informed decisions on the range of issues they have to deal with, so they necessarily rely on the input of advisors and others.

    You "don't want politicians making decisions because their phones were flooded with 50,000 phone calls of irate voters"? Well, if the rest of what they're hearing about carbon emissions is being fed to them from the American Petroleum Institute and the Competitive Enterprise Institute, for instance, because that's who has the money and the access, then those 50,000 phone calls are a good thing. That's not inapplicable to someone like Webb, it's just that the personal knowledge he has and the pressures he's already under are so strong that they've fixed his thinking in a way that won't be easily outweighed at this point by contrary input.

    I think you err in thinking that science, or experts, or "facts" dictate anything. We all process the world based on our differing values and perspectives. If there are absolutes, we grasp them subjectively. So the point of pressure is to weigh on that valuing, that subjectivity.

    BTD - good interview, but shhh! on saying we'll vote for Dems anyway come '08 no matter how much they screw up in the meanwhile.


    I think Politicians do make (none / 0) (#17)
    by Stewieeeee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 06:53:23 AM EST
    decisions based on their own grasp of the issues.  sometimes that grasp can be quite loose and fundamentally incorrect.  in which case, the best way to change their mind is to present the evidence and testimony from experts that will change someone's mind.  

    this is, in effect, how the global warming debate finally won out.  politicians confronted with 50,000 phone calls were not inclined to change their minds.  evidence presented on film by gore as well as supporting evidence presented by a unanimous majority of the science community.  that's what got the debate turned around.  i do not give gore credit for being a successful activist on the issue.  i give him credit for being a SCIENTIST on the issue.  which is not to say getting the message out doesn't matter, i'm sure it does, activism is part of it, but fundamentally that activism is built on a foundation of hard and cold fact.

    in the case of jim webb and the reid/feingold framework, i can't think of anyone but him and others like maj. gen. eaton who would have a better grasp on that framework and how it might or might NOT impact the military.  i have been derided for trusting these men on this issue.  i just did some more research today and found out that wesley clark doesn't support an approach that includes, in any context at all, a cessation of funding.

    who else is gonna know for certain wether or not reid/feingold is gonna impact the military?  if maj. gen. eaton and btd are standing at respective podiums and one tells me "defunding will be a problem for the military," and the other tells me "the reid/feingold framework will not be a problem for the military, or if it is then it's bush's fault for letting it be," i'm sorry, i'll listen to scientists about global warming.  i'll listen to maj. gen. eaton on the issue of using the power of the purse.

    before i can even talk about framing the issue, i have to know what the truth is.


    What it says to me (5.00 / 1) (#53)
    by Alien Abductee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 02:55:53 PM EST
    (that military-affiliated people aren't backing the Reid-Feingold date-certain defunding approach) is that as military people they don't favor any stepping back of their own sphere, i.e., the military, which is what reducing military funding under any circumstances equals in the current state of things. They might accept changing strategies if they don't agree with how the war is being run, but they won't favor any diminution of funds, scope, influence, etc. for the military in this or any other matter. More military funding is always better, to their view. Expecting military people to favor R-F - even if they understand it won't harm the troops by leaving them without bullets or any of the other canards - is unrealistic for reasons of their own personal interests and worldview, IMO, not because they think it won't work or will be harmful to the troops. Maybe that's overly cynical, but I think it's just human nature.

    The main value of putting on this kind of pressure, whether defunding actually happens or not, is that it broadens the range of views within which the discussion takes place. Without pressure for R-F, there really isn't any unambiguous position being taken that the war can and should be ended. The other approaches are more about setting up accountability for Bush's conduct of the war but accepting his fantasy goal of victory in Iraq and the endless extension of militarism and empire. For that reason alone it's worth keeping the R-F framework strongly in play. It's like the way the MSM keeps referring to dkos as a "far left" website. Unbelievable to most of us who've been gagging over its namby-pamby centrism. But it's part of how the Right keeps moving the spectrum of acceptable thought ever rightward. There's a political street theater aspect to all this.


    Exactly. (none / 0) (#55)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 03:13:22 PM EST
    as military people they don't favor any stepping back of their own sphere, i.e., the military, which is what reducing military funding under any circumstances equals in the current state of things.

    From the Norman Solomon article I quoted above:

    Faith that American might makes right is apt to be especially devout among those who command the world's most powerful military - and have the option of trying to overcome wartime obstacles by unleashing even more lethal violence.

    Re: i have to know what the truth is. (none / 0) (#20)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 07:07:47 AM EST
    Have you read this yet?

    as much as i hate halliburton (none / 0) (#21)
    by Stewieeeee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 07:30:03 AM EST
    and i wish to make it clear that i hate halliburton with every fiber of my being.

    as much as i hate halliburton, if they are providing mess facilities to troops, then before we can negate those contracts we first have to prevail upon the military to provide their own mess.

    that's a logistical challenge.

    the military should have never outsourced certain functions.

    but if this is a way to separate out funding that wastes our money from the funding that provides for the troops, then i would suggest that, going fwd, the rhetoric about weak politicians would stop, and a campaign to inform them of this fact be escalated.

    there are more important people in this world than myself who should be made aware of this.
    call up wesley clark.  tell him to issue a statement that says what you just said.

    NOT passing emergency supplemental funding does not hurt the troops. It never has hurt the troops. It will never hurt the troops.

    Not passing emergency supplemental funding is simply NOT FUNDING the occupation. That is all it is.


    The TROOPS are funded by regular appropriations. DOD budget. Emergency supplemental funding has nothing to do with "funding the troops".

    if this is true, then clark should have no problem making such a statement and then a person such as myself would appear even more batpoo crazy than i already do.


    Write him. (none / 0) (#22)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 07:47:27 AM EST
    Gather some facts of your own.

    Halliburton concerns are a strawman to change the subject.

    You know the propaganda is bullsh*t. Don't spread it.

    You could do what this person did.


    batpoo crazy (none / 0) (#23)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 08:25:41 AM EST
    DEAN BAKER, Co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research:
    [h/t to MO Blue]
    "The latest version of the 'hide behind the troops' mode of argument is to claim that Congress lacks the ability to end the war. The story goes that President Bush is commander in chief of the armed forces, and that if he does not want to end the war, then Congress cannot force his hand.According to this argument, if Congress were to use its control of the budget to restrict funding, it would jeopardize our troops stationed in Iraq by denying them the supplies and ammunition needed to defend themselves.

    "This argument is garbage. Congress has the authority to require the top military commanders in Iraq to produce a plan for safely withdrawing our troops from the country.  It can also require these commanders to give their best estimate of the cost of this plan. It can then appropriate this money, specifying that the funds be used for the withdrawal plan designed by the military."

    --Institute for Public Accuracy, War and the Power of the Purse

    Bush's previous lawyer John Yoo, not exactly an unbiased person had this to say:

    "It's perfectly constitutional and legal for Congress to cut off funds for any war it doesn't want the country to fight, and it's done that before," Yoo said in an interview, referring to the cutoff of funds for Vietnam that Congress approved in 1973.

    --Boston Globe

    i know (none / 0) (#24)
    by Stewieeeee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 09:04:17 AM EST
    you've posted that before.

    i've posted this before:

    Bill MAHER: ... Would it hurt the troops if we de-funded the war? Would that affect them?

    EATON [Maj. Gen. Paul Eaton]: It would be a very serious problem for the United States Army, and it would be political suicide for the Democratic Party.
       -- Real Time w/ Bill Maher, 3/9/07

    the central question then becomes who do we regard as the primary authority on this issue?

    between dean and eaton, who's our expert on what affects the military and what doesn't affect the military?


    So? (none / 0) (#25)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 09:38:42 AM EST
    You have one cite from one that you repeatedly refer to as if it saves your hide.

    Here's another one that supports your case: the CinC - the  honorable George W. Bush.

    Oh, and don't forget you also have Secretary of Defense Gates, as well as other luminaries like John Bolton, Condi Rice, Fredo Gonzales, and a few more I can't recall off hand.  I'm sure you know who they are though. They're ALL on your side.

    Oh yes, and don't forget your good buddy Steny Hoyer and the Blue Dogs - they claim to be democrats against the occupation, I'm told. Funny how they keep opposing ending the occupation and want you to pay for more death, isn't it?

    In your mind does all that justify supporting funding the deaths and maimings of tens of thousands of American soldiers and hundreds of thousands of Iraqis?

    How many died in Iraq while we've been discussing this?

    I keep giving you facts because you keep saying you want them, but you ignore them when I give them to you.

    You're not after facts to make up your mind with, Stewie.

    Your mind was made up for you long ago, by other people (see above - I named some) who think you are a sucker.


    that wasn't very (none / 0) (#26)
    by Stewieeeee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 10:03:33 AM EST

    i don't know why you should draw all sorts of conclusions about me just cause i defer to the testimony of someone regarded as an expert on the issue.

    and how you seem to avoid making those same conclusions about the expert in question.

    a little personal attack on a blog on someone who means nothing never hurt anyone.  but it's pretty obvious to me if your razor sharp insights into whose side i'm on were made about maj. gen. eaton, then the only result of that would be the marginalization of your case.

    webb is doing what he thinks is right.

    maj. gen. eaton is ... well who knows what you think of eaton?

    but me?  i'm on bush's side.  but who cares what you think about me?

    so.  really.  has any military person at all, retired or otherwise, signed on to the reid/feingold framework as specified by you and btd?

    i assure you.  you have my word that my mind could be changed by such testimony.


    Re; [your] mind could be changed (none / 0) (#27)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 10:16:36 AM EST
    No, I don't believe it could be.

    maybe not (none / 0) (#28)
    by Stewieeeee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 10:21:27 AM EST
    but if military personel (retired or otherwise) were endorsing the reid/feingold framework, then at least i'd look even worse than i already do now if i didn't change my mind.

    so.  there's that.


    No There's this. (none / 0) (#29)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 10:30:23 AM EST
    You've found one guy who said what you wanted to hear. And you won't look at anything else. You've made yourself very clear.

    Try putting as much effort and research (none / 0) (#30)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 10:35:51 AM EST
    into refuting with a fact and reason based argument what I posted over there, as I did to put it together. Then you'll have shown that you are interested in a real discussion. Until you do that you're only interested in listening to people who want to continue the occupation.

    You haven't done so, nor has anyone else, because it can't be done.


    Not at all (none / 0) (#33)
    by Stewieeeee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 10:57:11 AM EST
    One guy + webb + clark (as best as i can tell) + a curious lack of any military personel saying anything different.

    also, that one guy seems to me to have the experience to make an informed opinion on the issue at hand.

    so saying it's just one guy in this case is a little like saying a climatologist is just one guy of any ol' collection of guys who happen to have an opinion on global warming.

    there is some work to be done here.  and it's not my job to do it.  nor am i in a position to do it.  btd and people like yourselves can either worry about what i say on a blog or go about getting some endorsements for reid/feingold from some military people.

    and then when you get those endorsements, people like me will just look that much more stupid than we already do.

    consider that just icing on the cake.  cause you get those endorsements, i believe you'll have your legislation.


    Sorry Stewie (none / 0) (#35)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 11:00:42 AM EST
    It's not your place to define what I or anyone else have to do. I've done all I'm going to do in your case. I long ago stopped trying to educate the ineducable. I'll move on to people willing and able to hear. Thanks for your time.

    The curious lack of any military personel (none / 0) (#38)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 11:09:49 AM EST
    None of those military personel (1.00 / 1) (#41)
    by Stewieeeee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 11:19:39 AM EST
    have signed on to reid/feingold.

    you linked me to a group of people that has maj. gen. paul eaton as a member.

    think about that for a second.  i might conclude that eaton's opinion as expressed to bill maher would be consistent within that group.

    would you conclude any differently?

    has batiste said anything at all about a date certain defunding scenario?  are you sure you want him to say anything about that?


    You miss completely, Stewie. (none / 0) (#42)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 12:02:49 PM EST
    Whether it's you or whether it's some other one person who supports ending the occupation by ending the funding of it is irrelevant. You can fight it all you want.

    The fact remains that after posting my post here, and on my own site, on two others, and then on Kos, so far 94% of the people who have read it on Kos alone have voted for defunding, and 4% have voted against it.

    Enjoy your blinders. I'm quite sure than when the time comes for the occupation to be defunded and ended you'll be one of the first in line hollering about how badly you wanted it stopped all along.

    If that happens a year from today, what will you say when someone whose son or daughter dies between now and then asks you "Why did you not push for defunding this debacle a year ago? Why did you support funding it and continuing it?".

    I will say I did all I could to convince as many as I could to stop it.

    What will you say, Stewie?


    a poll on dailykos (1.00 / 1) (#44)
    by Stewieeeee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 12:05:04 PM EST
    is not very scientific.

    So? (none / 0) (#45)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 12:08:56 PM EST
    It was not intended to be representative of other than the people who answered it. You're smarter than that. Try to pay attention, Stewie.

    94% of the people who read it agreed that the occupation should be defunded and ended by March 31, 2008 (or an earlier date).


    Well i'll go poll 100 people (none / 0) (#46)
    by Stewieeeee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 12:13:44 PM EST
    in the pentagon and then say it wasn't meant to be anything other than what it was.

    Good. (none / 0) (#47)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 12:22:33 PM EST
    When you're done, come back and tell us what you'll say next year. You didn't forget the question did you? It's here.

    You aren't here for honest discussion, Stewie. You're here because you want the occupation to continue.


    if i wanted the occupation to continue (1.00 / 1) (#48)
    by Stewieeeee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 12:30:53 PM EST
    i wouldn't be making any suggestions to you about how to go about ending the occupation.

    get clark, batiste and eaton on board your legislative plan to the end the occupation.  if you wanted to end the occupation, i would think you'd think "ok.  good idea.  lets work on that."

    and not make excuses for why you don't have those people on board.

    or at least have the intellectual honesty and guts to make the same conclusions about them that you make about me.


    Stewie (none / 0) (#49)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 12:54:56 PM EST
    I've been giving you respect because you seemed at first to be discussing in good faith. But you've reverted to your old disingenuous trolling ways and to lies and misrepresentations. I haven't made excuses for not having anyone one board - quite the reverse in fact.

    Anyone who does not want to end the occupation wants the occupation to continue. That is simple enough for even you to understand, Stewie.

    You've lost the respect for the second and last time. You don't need to reply again. The conversation is over. You are simply a troll, imo. Not quite in talex's league yet, but you're working hard at it.


    when i suggested (1.00 / 1) (#50)
    by Stewieeeee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 01:16:07 PM EST
    that you or btd contact someone like clark to make a statement in support of date certain timeline defunding piece of legislation, i was told that i could go do so myself.

    there's no reason why i shouldn't do that.  and i might and then, if i get an answer, report it back here.

    of course there's no reason why you or btd wouldn't do that as well.

    this conversation went south for you when i pointed out that batiste, eaton, and clark -- military people who are extremely critical of bush's policies in iraq --  had not signed on to your plan.

    this is inconvenient for you.  the idea that there are other ways to work towards ending the occupation besides the reid/feingold framework.

    it can not be discussed.  we must not discuss these things.  we must conclude that anyone who suggests such a thing is a troll and is for continuing the occupation.

    cause we are wise and mature activists.

    the suggestion i have made still stands.  if you can obtain these vital endorsements of your plan, it can only help your cause.  good luck.


    No. (none / 0) (#51)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 02:11:07 PM EST
    The conversation, that began as a discussion of whether or not NOT funding the occuaption would hurt the troops - which I have shown is not the case - went south with your repeated attempts to change the subject because you could not make any fact or reason based argument against or refute what I have shown you. The discussion was between you and I - not between I and a third party. Your attempt to put the onus on me to garner  support from someone opposed to defunding whom you say you would then listen to is a disingenuous extension of that attempt to change the subject to avoid the original subject.

    Not even a nice try, Stewie.


    once the first part was resolved (none / 0) (#52)
    by Stewieeeee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 02:32:02 PM EST
    with the testimony provided by me by experts on the issue in question, i provided a way for you to, perhaps, change that testimony.

    again.  good luck.


    Carry on, Stewie. (none / 0) (#54)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 03:08:02 PM EST
    Think about what you'll say next year to those parents. Your "experts" might need your help.

    I will say I tried to convince the Stewie's (none / 0) (#43)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 12:04:50 PM EST
    but they wouldn't have any of it.

    nexus of disagreement over what? n/t (none / 0) (#11)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 03:58:09 AM EST
    over (none / 0) (#12)
    by Stewieeeee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 06:18:45 AM EST
    the issue of supporting the reid/feingold framework.

    after listening to btd describe his beliefs about how politicians come to their positions on issues, i generally think this is fair:  you and btd start with the belief that you can pressure a dem like jim webb into supporting reid/feingold.  all of your thinking thereafter falls in line with that sort of assumption about what politicians are.    and maybe some of them are.

    i come at this issue from the belief that jim webb's conviction (based on his military experience and the input he gets from his military peers) is that the reid/feingold framework will present a problem for the military.  that for him to then change his mind because of pressure placed on him by any group of voters at all would be a sad reason for him to change his mind.

    i think he should change his mind because he talked to experts like himself in the field and they made it clear to him that a reid/feingold framework would NOT, IN THIS CASE, pose any problems for the military at all.

    here is the fundamental disagreement:

    i don't want to piss off anyone by resorting to absolutes, but if there's an assumption one would make MOST OF THE TIME (maybe not all the time), it appears you and btd would a assume that a politician's position on an issue is a product of the political pressures placed on them first and then their own convictions second.  my assumption is that a politician's position on an issue is a product of their convictions first and then political pressures second.

    that's the nexus of disagreement.  i suspect i will be called naive for believing what i believe here about politicians.

    we just look at politicians differently, that's all.


    I think you're missing what I'm about (none / 0) (#14)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 06:48:55 AM EST
    I can't speak for BTD.

    You say: "you and btd start with the belief that you can pressure a dem like jim webb into supporting reid/feingold."

    I don't believe that at all. I don't think about Webb or any one individual politician at all, in that sense.

    I know what I know, from reason and logical deduction and fact, that funding the occupation and funding the troops are two separate and distinct issues. They are - any reasonble person honest with themselves can see that, if they will stop and think and look at the facts.

    Belief has absolutely nothing to do with it, any more than I believe a clear sky is blue.

    Having said that, I will also say here that Webb is right to be concerned that NOT funding the occupation may result in the troops in Iraq, and his son, being jeopardized.

    You are not thinking this through. If the Congress  announced today for example that there will be no more emergency supplementals passed and that Bush should bring the troops home before the current supplemental funds runs out, say before September, the troops in Iraq will be place in jeopardy BY BUSH if he does not bring them home.

    BUSH is holding the troops hostage in these "negotiations" (they barely deserve the distinction of being called that, btw) with nothing more than a bluff that you are buying. Sorry, but that's the way it is.

    At no time are they going to run out of bullets in the middle of a firefight, or some other similar idiotic fantasy and fearmongering that BushCo or anyone else might sell you.

    Think this through, Stewie. Get the facts, and think this through.

    Don't bother with silliness like telling me what I believe. THAT is an unsubstantiatable self-deceiving position for you to take.


    in any case (none / 0) (#18)
    by Stewieeeee on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 06:59:54 AM EST
    i don't want to have to transcribe what btd said.

    the light just went on when i heard the first five minutes of what he had to say about politicians.

    i will say this though, he comes off as a very nice guy on radio.


    Yep. (none / 0) (#19)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 07:03:08 AM EST
    We need less Big Tent (none / 0) (#13)
    by koshembos on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 06:39:00 AM EST
    The constant infighting with Broder and Klein and the incessant repetition of a vote that couldn't make any difference is something we can do without. It doesn't shed light on anything and doesn't deepen any discussion. Why would anyone want to hear it on the radio?

    We need less dopes. (none / 0) (#16)
    by Edger on Wed Jun 13, 2007 at 06:53:01 AM EST