Wednesday, November 08, 2006

# Posted 11:50 PM by Ariel David Adesnik  

ONE HECKUVA QUESTION: Over at RCP, John McIntyre has a question about Rumsfeld's resignation:
If President Bush had done this two, three, four months ago would yesterday have been different?
I dunno. But it might've been worth a few thousand votes in Montana or Virginia. Then again, OxBlog won't miss either Conrad Burns or George Allen.
(21) opinions -- Add your opinion


Give at least a little credit to Allen, if not for his campaign over the last 6 months, then at least for his 8 years as a very popular governor and senator. He had years worth of issues to run on, and he chose none of them. There is no doubt that he ran a disastrous campaign, especially post-macaca. If the Washington Post went overboard with the story, Allen didn't help by self destructing. But the Allen we saw in the last 6 months was not the Allen we knew over at least the last 8 years.

I was watching CSPAN with a friend of mine. This was earlier this spring. He covered a lot of bases (I think it was one of his 2008 exploratory stump speeches). When he was done, my roommate said "Wow, that was pretty good." The thing is, my roommate subscribes to The Nation and Mother Jones, and is a rather liberal democrat. The point is, Allen had the issues he could have run on, but he chose not to. He's young still, so maybe he can come back in a few years (for what race, I don't know) and Virginians will give him a second chance.

And it's ok now for you to give Allen at least a little bit of credit for his record, if not his campaign. It's not like he'll be giving John McCain any competition for ANY race anytime soon.
>>He's young still<<

In "politics-years," that is.

I also meant to add, I won't really miss Conrad Burns either. I will miss Santorum and Talent, however.
Had Rumsfeld been pitched several weeks ago it would have heightened enemy activity in Iraq. Actually, the awful choice of Gates might do that, too. Gates is a worm of the Scowcroft type, and it seems very unlikely he will prosecute the war as well as Rumsfeld. Gates has always been a bureaucrat, never been a leader. To me, this looks like Harriet Miers all over again, at first blush.
I voted against Santorum. It was easy to do. His overwhelming defeat was due to his being wrong on *every* issue--the war stance was bad enough, but his fallback position was his effort to 'save' Social Security; in the end he had no credibility with the voters. On top of this his campaign was quite cynical...and clumsy.

As for Allen, I always wondered how he managed to create a political career out of nothing. He has no accomplishments I am aware of, other than the fact that his father was a famous football coach--he never served in the military and yet was quite hawkish on the war...in short, he has not paid his dues. By the way, I don't count his self-serving political career as an accomplishment.
If President Bush had done this two, three, four months ago would yesterday have been different?

Not clearly.

#It would have signalled that Bush thought that the Iraqi conflict wasn't going well, instead of campaigning that it was in hand.

#It would have been before the Ramadan surge in violence, which was a proximate cause of political strain.

#Confirmation hearings of a new DOD wouldn't have fit on the schedule or would have involved questions better left to lie. (hat tip to David Brooks for that analysis)

On my blog today, I ask whether Rummy is a scapegoat, in "A Little Understood War".
I could be completely wrong here, but who cares. :) I find it incredulous that anyone here thinks that by Rumsfeld resigning earlier the election would have gone the Republicans way. Wasn't there a few corruption scandals, among a general atmosphere of republicans not being true republicans?

I can see the campaign slogans now, "hey American please vote for us, we finally axed Rumsfeld." Impressive huh?

It reminds me of all the republicans giving Kerry advice post election....
Had Rumsfeld been deservedly thrown to the wolves a month ago, it probably would have lowered Republican turnout as an admission of failure. Papal infallibility was always Bush's hole card.

And from that political zwichenzug, the choice of Gates is weak, a Bush family retainer rather than a competent patriot.
I disappointed in Oxblog that would seemingly prefer the populist Webb versus the free-trader, pro-business Allen.

George Allen, displayed tremendous integrity when he gave a conciliatory speech despite enduring a campaign against him that featured the worst character asassination possible. He is neither an anti-semite or
racist yet he was called both andhad to stand there while a liberal blogger affiliated with the Daily Kos asked if he spit on his first wife. It really it couldn't have been much worse.

George Allen as a previous poster mentions was a successful governor and senator. He tried to talk about the issues like the good economy but was drowned out by ad hominem attacks.

Besides the racist allegations, he was also criticized for a lack of military service, which is absurd.

From a previous post on my blog http://holdthesenate.blogspot.com/
Democrats decided that service in Vietnam is sufficient to be elected to higher office. Now according to these same really partisan Democrats, suddenly you are a "chicken-hawk" if you didn't serve in Vietnam even if you were not of age and you didn't actively avoid serve because you chose to go to college. Take for example the Virginia Senate race, Jim Webb has little grasp of domestic issues but somehow he is qualified to be Senator based on his distinguished military service and his really short stint as President Reagan's naval secretary yet George Allen who is quite knowledgeable on issues of governance is deemed to be unqualified because he was born a little later and was in college during the Vietnam War. What gives? My late grandfather was a distinguished World War II hero and I am proud of his service but I hardly believe that qualified him as an international affairs expert or a domestic policy expert who should be a U.S. Senator.
Welcome to the real Virginia, pm.

It wasn't absurd for Webb to run on his public service and his military record since he had done public service and he had a military record. He also served as Minority Counsel for the Senate Veteran Affairs Committee. By contrast, Allen had no particular non-celebrity related experience to speak of. Football.

Webb was the better man. My Navy cousin lives in VA and he positively crowed about his vote for Webb.
"Now according to these same really partisan Democrats, suddenly you are a "chicken-hawk" if you didn't serve in Vietnam even if you were not of age and you didn't actively avoid serve because you chose to go to college."

No. You are confused on this issue. It's not difficult. Avoiding the draft and at later date *not* being a chicken hawk (Bill Clinton comes to mind--and perhaps even more so, since he was a C.O.) is not a character problem to me. On the other hand, avoiding the draft (5 times!), and later becoming a chicken hawk is hypocritical (and having the hubris to say that "I had more important things to do" like Dick Cheney is an insult to all men and women who have served; I would also include George Allen in this group, though truthfully, I don't know what his excuse was for not serving--Viet Nam era or not; I would also throw into this category Newt and Rush for extra emphasis--).
"George Allen, displayed tremendous integrity when he gave a conciliatory speech despite enduring a campaign against him that featured the worst character asassination possible."

The character asassination was a self inflicted wound. His opponent remained above that stuff. As for the conciliatory speech, that's what the loser typically does. It does not denote extraoridnary integrity.
I am glad that someone else is angry that Donald Rumsfeld didn't leave in 2005 or early 2006 and give a chance for a new Secretary of Defense to think out of the box, show some creativity, promote new leaders, and otherwise give us voters a choice yesterday better than "stay the course" v. Nancy Pelosi.
George Allen as a previous poster mentions was a successful governor and senator. He tried to talk about the issues like the good economy but was drowned out by ad hominem attacks.


His own.
Republicans lost their majorities mainly because they alienated conservatives. Aside from moderate tax cuts and support for the war, there wasn't much conservatism coming out of Congress. And the GOP Congress wussed out of countering filibuster abuse with regard to Bush's judicial nominations. A Rumsfeld resignation would have simply made conservatives even more dispirited.
Not this time. This was a swing in the pendulum. If you can't get any further to the right, there's only one way to go--. Of course, even this very conservative group of Democrats appears to be extremely left-wing to conservatives.
You got any actual quotes of noted conservatives referring to the conservatives of the freshmen class of 2007 as far leftists?

It's more accurate to say that the House and Senate leadership that these moderate Democrats put into power appear to be extremely left wing. And they are. Take a look at Nancy Pelosi's ratings from various organizations:

100% - NEA
90% - League of Conservation Voters
87% - ACLU
87% - AFL-CIO
34% - US Chamber of Commerce
21% - National Taxpayers Union
29% by Cato Institute

Here's Harry Reid's ratings, by comparison:

91% - NEA
84% - League of Conservation Voters
40% - ACLU
100% - AFL-CIO
35% - US Chamber of Commerce
17% - National Taxpayers Union
17% by Cato Institute

The GOP has been frittering away the conservative vote since 1996, when the GOP-led House essentially gave up on reform. It barely hung on to the edge of the cliff in two Presidential elections, and the fingers finally slipped in the 2006 midterm.
Sorry, I guess I confused the last six years--I could have sworn it was an extreme right wing Congress (Dick Armey, Tom DeLay and the rest of the Hitler Youth) supporting the Great Decider.

If it is your contention (NOW) that the boys ran up the deficit, and that "we real conservatives" "didn't notice" or else we'd a said something"...puhleeze. Where can a conservative turn in these troubled times??? I ask ya! Recall, it was the Penguin himself who said, "deficits don't matter".
Ah, Godwin's law finally rears its head. (Hitler Youth? You couldn't come up with a moonbat analogy that's even of voting age?)

Heck yeah conservatives noticed that the GOP leadership was letting spending get out of control. Didn't I say earlier that that was one of the issues alienating them from the GOP?

OK, no more troll feeding.
My comment was meant to refer to the period leading UP TO the election. Not now. A robust campaign by conservatives to defeat the GOP Congress would have been the effective avenue to express this frustration. Frankly, I have long thought that the conservatives should break off from the Republicans, form their own party and compete in the open for their ideals. At the end of it, there will always be some degree of co-opting going on; just ask any Democrat how they feel about Hillary/Liberman/others.

The idea that conservatives might have sat out this election due to feeling ignored may have some validity as I have had similar feelings from the opposite perspective--and have sat out due to not having a candidate I felt suitable for the role. Although not the purpose of this thread, I do think a strong argument could be made that Bush and his fellow Republicans are particularly harmful as role models for children. Being a slacker in school and business should not be rewarded or held up to be a worthy pursuit--it is a major reason this country (the US) is in the shape it is in. One need only look at George Allen and the praise heaped upon him in this thread for the manner of conceding the election to Webb. This is *expected* behvaior isn't it? Why should Allen be praised for doing something that is expected of any politician?

That said, it is quite difficult to take seriously the statement that this Congress (and the previous five as well) has not been 'conservative enough'. The reference to Hitler was appropriate given the degree of control this body has attempted to exert over the American public--perhaps the most revealing moment, though there have been many this past decade, was the Terry Schiavo affair--a low point in modern history, and a major cause for Rick Santorum's defeat.
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