Yep, and they just rolled over after a week of shameless kabuki, to not only allow Bush to interpret Article 3 pretty much however he pleases (you know, when he's not edimufyin' hisself readin' L'Etranger), but to provide him retroactive cover for what's already happened. Because, though it's rarely mentioned, there are dozens of people who have been literally disappeared, to be battered and broken in some dungeon, left to die, off the books, anonymously, without recourse or due process, perhaps completely innocent, which we know has already happened many times.
But that's not the most obnoxious part of Broder's stale chunder. It's his reflexive journamalistic instink that tells him that if he angers both "sides", that he's doing his job. So he lobs this scud o' stupid:
For one, Broder's equivalence between the "foul-mouthed" bloggerses and the religious fanatics is cheap and false. There are plenty of vituperative, foul-mouthed bloggers on the right; that they haven't yet mau-maued a Linc Chafee or a Chuck Hagel is irrelevant. They're there in numbers, and like the lefties, right or wrong, they're doing something they believe in. But make no mistake, they are every bit as intemperate and extremist in their commentary as anyone on the left side of the blogosphere.
So by Broder's weak calculus, they pretty much cancel each other out, and only a complete fool -- or Broder -- would stipulate that there is anything remotely close to a countervailing force on the left to the political juggernaut of fanatic religious PACs on the right. It's not even close; it's not even worth debating.
Now, I don't know who it was that decided that a bunch of tornado-dodging, football-and-corn-worshipping flatlanders were supposed to be the ultimate repository of American Wisdom, but ferchrissakes, at least have the balls to admit when your gut fucked you over. At least have the honesty to fess up and acknowledge that the traits you want in a drinking buddy aren't necessarily the same traits you want in the most powerful job on the entire planet, and as such, maybe you should ask your interviewee tougher questions than "Would I like to have a beer with you?".
So stick it up your ass sideways, O Dean of all that is civil and even-handed. This is what your moderation and fake objectivity got you -- a petulant moron running the show, dragging this country into the moral pit of torture and murder, of preventive war based on false premises, of future war being agitated for even as we speak. This is what happens when you beltway weasels jerk each others' chains and decide that it would just be bad form to point out the obvious, ugly truth of the matter.
Watching the HBO documentary on Barry Goldwater the other day, I was struck by how, despite Goldwater's reactionary crankism in foreign policy matters, he was a true conservative on pretty much everything else. Even much of his more notorious blustering was of the spirit of "American exceptionalism", which is expected of every politician, as is demonstrated by Nancy Pelosi and Charlie Rangel falling all over themselves to offer criticisms of Hugo Chàvez' UN buffoonery. Anyway, the point is that Goldwater, a true conservative, would have to run as an interventionist Democrat at this point, because the Republican Party has been taken over by Christian Coalition nutjobs and faux-populist windbags of the Pat Buchanan/Newt Gingrich stripe. (And it says everything about the state of the corporate media that, mere minutes after Chàvez tirade, MSNBC cupcake Norah O'Donnell turned to none other than Pat Buchanan for what is supposed to be sensible commentary. Mobutu Sese Seko probably could have gotten a cushy gig as a "commentator" or "consultant" in this environment.)
Goldwater, whatever his faults, had enough sense to see the Falwell types for what they were -- strutting little fascists for Christ, who have debased the meaning of "conservative" (and "Christian", for that matter) quite thoroughly. The current Republican Party is not "conservative", it is nakedly authoritarian. By definition, this means that, despite Broder's puling excesses, they do not have even a modest amount of "decent respect" for what the people want. Diebold and James Dobson will tell them what they want, and fake mavericks like McCain and Huckleberry Graham will do whatever their master tells them to. So spare us all the "civility and decency" chat, Dave. These neocon/theocon culture warrior assholes instigated all this with a full fourteen years now of patently indecent, vituperative conduct.
And now that Iraq is said to be under even more torture than under Saddam, and in the early stages of civil war, even the Bushies aren't bothering with the "liberation" tropes. Now it's just "it takes time". Oh, really? Because we were insultingly told, as if we all stupid, traitorous ninnies, that this would be a cakewalk that would pay for itself. My, the days of civility and decent respect. Those nasssty bloggerses sure fucked all that up.
This is an administration that has gone out of its way repeatedly to thwart scrutiny and avoid accountability. They literally feel that they do not owe their putative bosses, the citizens of the United States of America, an explanation about anything. Ever. They have lied, obfuscated, and dissembled about pretty much everything. They have treated their opponents and even their allies with sneering contempt, and have been anything but serious and civil and decent.
So when punk-ass bitches like Dave Broder hop their high horses to scold some bloggers and blindly defend the indefensible, there's nothing I as a lowly, uncivil blogger can say that the dark master himself can't say better. Hit it, Dick!
If that's not contempt for the Constitution and settled law, and the people who live under those things, I don't know what is. I think that is far more indecent and uncivil than a couple of strings of expletives from anonymous ranters on the internets, but I guess I just don't have the innate godlike midwestern wisdom to prioritize properly.
Exactly. None of this is coincidental, or even circumstantial, as it's been portrayed. The revivification of the "unitary executive" principle is opportunistic, enabled by the PTSD this nation experienced in the immediate aftermath of 9/11, where a shell-shocked populace rallied around people it assumed it could trust.
Well, it's been made abundantly clear that they can't be trusted to be competent in their jobs or accountable to us. Most people are seeing that, but the leverage belongs to the minority in the appropriate opinion-mongering jobs. People like David Broder, whose job as point man is to belabor the small stuff and studiously ignore the obvious. He fancies himself a serious commentator, but he's really just a rented scrivener to the lowlifes who fester in power, dragging this country through a downward spiral of needless embarrassment and unnecessary conflict.
The thing about being the big dog, whether we like it or acknowledge it or not, is that all eyes are on us. I don't think the other 95% of the people inhabiting this planet see what Dean Broder sees. I don't think anyone outside of the professional parasite class sees what he sees.