Sunday, December 09, 2007

Choice Words for Democrats

Lambert over at Corrente Wire nails the Democratic congressional leadership, more specifically Nancy Pelosi, Jay Rockefeller, and Jane Harman. They deserve it:
Since the voters put them back in power, the Democrats have taken impeachment off the table, punted on the war, never figured out a way to hold Republicans accountable for filibusters and obstructionism, so legislation is in the toilet, and never managed to use oversight power to do anything more than chip away around the edges of the Bush regime—though they have written a great number of Sternly Worded Letters.

And now, top Democrats turn out to be enablers of war crimes by our lawless executive. What a surprise. Harry, Nancy, nice work.

For a few choice four-letter words, if you're not easily offended, read the rest. Or, give Glenn Greenwald a read. He makes the same point in lawyer-like multi-syllables:
Torture didn't become an American policy despite the best efforts of a righteous Democratic leadership to stop that. Torture became an American policy precisely because a meek and often outright supportive Democratic leadership continuously allowed it.
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I wish none of this were true. I wish we had a genuine, vibrant opposition party. It would be indescribably beneficial if the rare, isolated and usually marginalized voices within the Democratic Party (and the even rarer and more marginalized voices in the GOP) were predominant. But they just aren't. That's just a fact that can't be ignored. The Democratic Party in Congress is largely controlled and led by those who have enabled and affirmatively supported the worst aspects of the Bush foreign policy and the most severe abuses of our country's political values.
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Whether it's the war in Iraq or illegal surveillance or the abolition of habeas corpus and now the systematic use of torture, it's the Bush administration that conceived of the policies, implemented them and presided over their corrupt application. But it's Congressional Democrats at the leadership level who were the key allies and enablers, never getting their hands dirty with implementation -- and thus feigning theatrical, impotent outrage once each abuse was publicly exposed -- but nonetheless working feverishly the entire time to enable all of it every step of the way.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Lambert should read the constitution and rules of governance of the House and Senate.
The House has consistently passed progressive bills with a comfortable margin, but not enough votes to overcome King George's veto. The GOP has decided to stick with their lame-duck president in spite of his poor approval ratings. And the Iraq war rages on...
The Senate is still closely balanced, with only a vote or two in favor of the Democrats.
The votes in Congress count for everything. Good intentions are not sufficient to overcome entrenched political attitudes.