Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Again, Why Not?

As readers know, I have long argued that Mark tends to ignore the intellectual implications of his arguments, whether it is about his fundamentalist exegesis Gaudium et Spes on torture but not deportation or more recently when it comes to the Bush administration. So while he wants Dick Cheney impeached and tried for war crimes, he is agnostic on the issue of whether or not to impeach Bush? Am I the only one here who sees just a little bit of incongruity about these types of statements?

Look, if you believe that Bush and Cheney are as bad as Mark clearly does, I would be very interested in hearing why you wouldn't want the guy impeached. Stand up for your principles and grow a pair, for God's sake. Arguing, as Mark has repeatedly done, that Bush and Cheney are guilty of all manner of high crimes and constitutional violations, only to remain agnostic on the issue of whether or not they should be impeached strikes me as nothing short of either cognitive dissonance or rhetorical disconnect. If you believe someone has committed these types of offenses but don't believe that they were impeached, then what in God's name do you think that the constitutional power is there for?

In a way, this kind of rhetorical tap-dancing is rather like his other claim that he doesn't support Ron Paul when all of his actions to date appear to speak to the contrary. Or to put it another way, it is akin to how Giuliani sounds when he tells us about how much he hates abortion. Speaking of which, it's "Rudy McRomney," not "McRomneyani Troika." If you are going to use a pejorative, at least get it right.

Also, since K of C does a pretty good job of refuting Mark's nuttiness for me, I figure I'll just repost with several parts that I particularly agree with bolded:
[T]he rank and file are unimpressed with the foreordained McRomneyani Troika who the Powers have decreed they must choose from.

Several questions:

(1) Who are these "Powers"?

(2) Where can I find the decree ordering GOP primary voters to choose from only the foreordained?

(3) Is this decree written in the blood of murdered Catholic infants, or is it just distributed telepathically?

(4) What is the relationship between the Powers and:
(a) The Freemasons
(b) The Illuminati
(c) The Kiwanas
(d) The Secret Cabal of Ron Paul-Supressing Anti-Chesterton Ninja Pirates?

(5) Do you realize that they're tunnelling under your house?

When Clinton was on the ropes the GOP base was behind the GOP even if much of the rest of the country wasn't and the GOP ultimately benefited.

I wouldn't call the outcome of the 1998 midterm elections a benefit to the GOP.
K the C | 07.09.07 - 12:37 pm | #

Did you give milions upon millions of dollars to McRomneyani?

Me neither. Somebody did.

If the "Mc" stands for "McCain," then no one actually gave milllions upon millions of dollars to McCain, and if they did they're gone now. McCain is reported to have less cash than Ron Paul (R-Mars). If money donations are indicative of foreordainment, and McCain is foreordained, then Ron Paul must also be foreordained.
K the C | 07.09.07 - 12:55 pm | #

If we can't Impeach a President who lied us into an UnJust War,

Unjust, maybe. But to say that Bush "lied us into... war" is to say that he managed to pull the wool over the eyes of a majority of the House and Senate, including large numbers of Democrats, including Hillary Clinton, who had access to the same intelligence that her husband had for eight years.

Like I said, we can impeach him if we want, but it would be pretty stupid.

Bush and Blair were bombing, among other things, Iraqi civilian non-military targets and embargoing food and medicine etc with no legal right to do so.

The UN sanctions weren't legal? Okay, fine, but let's indict Kofi Annan & Pals for war crimes, too.

Saddam was a THREAT? To US?

Time to read up on Just War doctrine. The threat doesn't have to be against the party bringing military action. Defense of others can be a valid grounds for a just war.

it appears to me the rules and standards we applied to Nazi's do not apply to us.

Thank goodness, as the Nurenberg trials were a travesty of victor's justice. But hey, the ends justify the means, right? They were Nazis, so they didn't deserve a fair trial. Same with Bush.
K the C | 07.09.07 - 5:53 pm | #

Well, in that case hooray for John Wilkes Booth. Abraham Lincoln got rid of habeas corpus, treated at least a quarter of the country as enemy combatants, allowed slavery to persist until the end of the "war," and replaced his commanders at will. Can we at least call him "worst President of the 1800s?"
HokiePundit W&M 0L | Homepage | 07.09.07 - 9:06 pm | #

Memo to Bush Excusers: George W. Bush is not Lincoln. This is not the Civil War. You can now abandon that extremely threadbare excuse for Dubya's excesses.
Mark Shea | Homepage | 07.09.07 - 9:14 pm | #


Bush isn't Lincoln? This isn't the Civil War? Glad we got that cleared up. Of course, comparisons are a very weak tool if the two things being compared are the same. However, they work when comparing different things, such as the quality of your apologetics (excellent) and the quality of your arguments in BDS-affected posts (mediocre at best).

Bush also isn't FDR and this isn't WWII (a boondoggle in foreign lands of which no good ever came, yes?), but FDR threatened to shut down media outlets that showed material he deemed damaging to the war effort. He also put thousands of innocent Americans of Japanese descent into camps; Bush has put a few hundred likely terrorists into a prison where they receive more calories per day than the Marines guarding them.

You may not like what Bush is doing, and you may have expected better, but it's certainly not unprecedented, nor does it even rise to the level of things done in the past.
HokiePundit W&M 0L | Homepage | 07.10.07 - 1:11 am | #

Quite possibly nobody in the history of the republic has done more to stamp out rational conservative political thought and divide conservative opinion than GWB. He's a divider, not a uniter, though (to all appearances) unintentionally so.

I never know what to make of this assertion. How does an intellectual lightweight like W "stamp out rational conservative political thought"? Last time I checked, Commentary was still publishing. Heritage and Cato haven't boarded up. Pat Buchanan and Taki Getdrunkfalldownchaseskirtsopolis rolled out a new magazine. Conservatism is just fine. If anything, Bush helped to discredit the least conservative element of conservatism, the Neoconservatives, and revitilized the Paleos.

Bush is a divider? I guess, if your measure of division is robust internal conservative debate. I can't see that as harmful to conservatism, unless its's your particular brand of conservatism that's losing the debate. But even when Bush has been bad, he's often united conservatives. Conservatives united against Harriet Meiers, and they united against comprehensive immigration reform.

Bush isn't a movement conservative, and never was. Conservatives rolled their eyes when Bush rolled out "compassionate conservatism." I don't think he can do much damage to a school of thought that he was never a part of. What would really harm conservatism is if conservative intellectuals decided that the whole enterprise was fundamentally flawed, but I don't see anyone doing that.

Oh, certainly Bush has harmed the GOP. The party is in worse shape than when he found it, but what does that have to do with conservatism? If anything, Bush's time at the helm has swung the momentum in the party back towards paleoconservatism. The party got fat and happy and lost its way long before Bush took office. For the first time in more than two decades, a real conservative may win the GOP nomination. Contra Mark, conservatives have real power to push the GOP to where they want it to go, witness the immigration and Meiers debacles.

Anyway, if you can show me how Bush has harmed the conservative intellectual enterprise, I'd love to hear it. Until then, "Bush harmed conservatism" will remain another way of saying "Bush isn't a conservative and I don't like him."

Also, might I suggest that one who is now arguing that conservatives use "Bush Derangement Syndrome" as a way to insulate our leader from criticism (which was so apparent during the immigration debate) is sort of like the pot calling the kettle black given that Mark's now-frequent accusation that his critics are in league with us here at the Coalition for Fog.


Donald R. McClarey said...

"George W. Bush is not Lincoln. This is not the Civil War. You can now abandon that extremely threadbare excuse for Dubya's excesses."

Hopefully Mark will now finally abandon his frequent conjuring of a mythical golden age of this country at war in order to lambaste the conduct of the current war. I can understand why he is now shying away from historical comparisons however. Such comparisons do after all require a basic understanding of the history involved. Mark has never given much indication of interest in secular history except as it may be seized up for polemical purposes.

Donald R. McClarey said...

"seized up for" should have been "seized upon for".

Anonymous said...

The Blackadder Says:

Originally I believe it was just Giuliani who Mark said people were being forced to vote for. Now it's the McRomneyani Trokia. Presumably Mark will soon find a way to fit some part of Fred Thompson's name into the moniker, and the Trokia will become the Quartet. Frankly, I think Mark is thinking small. It isn't McRomneyani that the Powers are forcing on us. It's Ruduncan Paulhuckabackmore-McRomcredoson, Esq., the hydra-headed candidate from hell.

Is it just coincidence, do you think, that Ron Paul continues to be let into the debates while other candidates like David Ernest Furniss:


or Hugh Cort:


or Ryan McKinney:


have been completely excluded. I mean, to hear the media talk about it, you wouldn't even know these guys were running. And they certainly aren't backed by big money contributors they way someone like, say, Ron Paul has been.

Don't be fooled: You don't have to vote for Ruduncan Paulhuckabackmore-McRomcredoson. Fight the power.

Pauli said...

I won't be offended if this comment is deleted, but I suppose you guys have seen this? Some very well-meaning folks, but some extremely dubious assertions on display, I'm afraid. Some of it is downright funny given that RP has veritably no chance of winning.

Pauli said...

Blackadder, how could you forget Joe Schriner? Obviously you are practicing censorship of the foulest kind in this omission. How much is the Constitution Party paying you, hmmmmmmm?

Victor said...


There is no need to fear that links refering favorably to Ron Paul (or any other candidate) will cause deletion, though I will say he is my least favorite among the 10 principal GOP candidates, as a libertarian dove (me being a statist hawk).

Especially to a hilarious site like that one. To steal a link from Mark Adams, if there is a man among the GOP candidates who sees capitalism as free from original sin (and thus really DOES have a stance incompatible with CST on the point), it is Ron Paul.

I saw Paul on the Morton Downey Jr. show when it was hot (gawd ... I'm dating myself) and Paul was running for president on the Libertarian ticket. He was defending the legalization of drugs and at one point he said "I don't want to legalize drugs, I want to legalize freedom." (This was before Downey yelled at Paul, "I pewk all over you" and the two got into one of those legendary nose-to-nose, spit-flying yelling rituals while the audience cheered. My inner pro-wrestling fan loved it.)

Anonymous said...

Well, since it was originally Rudy McRomney, not McRomneyani, we can add Fred by calling this fictitious tettaracephalar candidate Fred McRomneyani.

Anonymous said...

Or Rudy McThrompneyson (the th pronounced as a single t of course), of course). It has a nice ring to it, don't you think?

Joseph D'Hippolito said...

If anything, Bush helped to discredit the least conservative element of conservatism, the Neoconservatives, and revitilized the Paleos.

Concerning the Paleos: Really? How? The Paleos are nothing but reactionaries who, like their Leftist counterparts, 1) try to shoehorn reality into their theories 2) abandon reality altogether for their pet theories.

If Buchanan, Larison and Rockwell are the intellectual exemplars of the Paleoconservative movement, then Paleoconservativism has less societal influence than Calvinism in the Irish Republic.

Besides, just because something is a "movement" doesn't mean it has substantial influence. A bowel movement is also a movement...

Shawn said...

Hopefully Mark will now finally abandon his frequent conjuring of a mythical golden age of this country at war in order to lambaste the conduct of the current war. I can understand why he is now shying away from historical comparisons however. Such comparisons do after all require a basic understanding of the history involved. Mark has never given much indication of interest in secular history except as it may be seized up for polemical purposes.

Precisely Donald. I found it odd that he kvetched about how no one wanted to defend indefinite detainment and when I pointed out to him that the authority whereby President Bush detained Belial Hussein was the Alien Enemies Act signed into law by President John Adams as a wartime measure (and never repealed), he of course ignored it.

By the way, if you could email me it would be appreciated Donald...I want to send you something.

Anonymous said...

Considering that John Adams lost re-election, and saw his party and that of George Washington obliterated, for being a tyrannical British-loving title-pimping poseur who also happened to be the founder of the first of only two (or three, if one counts the Roosevelts) presidential dynasties, that is hardly to Bush's credit.

Anonymous said...

Vive le Jefferson!

paul zummo said...

Vive le Jefferson!

Boooooo. Hisssssss.

Sorry, I'm an Adams man myself.

Anonymous said...

The Blackadder Says:

If the Alien Enemies Act was so objectionable that it caused the destruction of the Federalist party, why didn't the Republicans bother to repeal it?

Personally, I'm more of a Hamilton man myself. I do think that Adams' son, JQA, was the best ex-president, however.

Anonymous said...

JQA wore silk undies!

Anonymous said...

The Blackadder Says:

Given that the actual charge made against JQA by the Jacksonians was that he had pimped for the Czar, I'm sure he would be relieved to hear that he was only being accused of wearing silk underwear.