Tuesday, May 29, 2007

The Consequence of Squander

Nashville's "center-right" mainstream ink jerk takes its shots at Al Gore's new book and it bemoans a society where people from either side of the political divide do not give each other credit for good ideas. Without getting into the question of whether the City Paper has ever credited Al Gore for good ideas, I want to at least emphasize the hypocrisy of the CP's second judgment.

For years the CP has published syndicated right-wing columnists whose best ideas of kindness were to plunge wedges deeper and to polarize to the point of breakage. Yet, the editors lecture the rest of us for lacking kindness that they have never themselves promoted; probably because such kindness does not send their paper flying off the racks.

But in their own flawed appeal of reason they abandon history for revisionism in their defense of George W. Bush:
Bush saw the country through one of its darkest hours since Pearl Harbor though he now gets little credit or recognition for his response to 9/11. The invasion of Afghanistan and the quick response of the American military that seemed to mollify and calm so many Americans after 9/11 is now overshadowed by the difficulty of the Iraq war.
Despite all rationalizing understatement, the Iraq War has been more than just "difficulty." And "seeing us through" means coming out the other side of Afghanistan. Yet, thanks to the diversion to Iraq we are farther away from the other side now than we were in 2001.

President Bush totally squandered the universal, nonpartisan support he had after 9/11. He could have seen us through Afghanistan and been the most popular president in history. Instead, his decisions bogged us down in Baghdad in the classic catch-22 where we must leave but we do not seem to be able to.

Now Afghani terrorists are entrenched and emboldened and Iraq went from a hell hole for some to a hell hole for others, including our own troops. Mr. Bush has to wear that albatross, deserving no better fate, thanks to his failure to persevere and to his resolve to squander. Trying to color that positive shows just how unreasonable the CP editors are.

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