Dog Pack Politics
by paperwight, Tue Jun 21, 2005 at 02:57:18 PM EDT
"No one, including the White House, can deny that the statement I read on the Senate floor was made by an FBI agent describing the torture of a prisoner at Guantanamo Bay. That torture was reprehensible and totally inconsistent with the values we hold dear in America. This Administration should apologize to the American people for abandoning the Geneva Conventions and authorizing torture techniques that put our troops at risk and make Americans less secure."
But by Friday, here's what we get:
"I have learned from my statement that historical parallels can be misused and misunderstood. I sincerely regret if what I said caused anyone to misunderstand my true feelings: our soldiers around the world and their families at home deserve our respect, admiration and total support."
shouldn't be disappointed by this any more. I should be used to
Democratic leaders rolling over to show their bellies like submissive
dogs the second they (or any other Democrat who says something real)
get any criticism. Democratic leaders rush to grovel in apology
for Dean every time he says something the base likes, and now Durbin is
doing the belly-crawl for having the temerity to say that it is wrong
to torture, and torturing puts you in some very unpleasant company.
(Just a quick hint: if you don't want to be compared to bad
people throughout history, don't establish a policy of doing the types
of bad things they did.)
For some reason, the Democratic leadership (with very few exceptions like Dean and Conyers) haven't figured out that the entire political process in the US now runs on dog-pack psychology: show weakness and you lose. Back down, and you lose. Apologize and you lose. Fail to attack and you lose.
The Republicans and their apparatchiks perfected this environment and the corporate media go right along with it. Worse, so does much of the Democratic leadership. I try not to think of the corporate media as careerist scavengers on the Republican attacks, but it becomes harder and harder the more I see what they focus on and what they don't. And I just wince every time the Democratic leadership does the submissive-dog behavior when criticized. Maybe Grover Norquist was right:
"Once the minority of House and Senate are comfortable in their minority status, they will have no problem socializing with the Republicans. Any farmer will tell you that certain animals run around and are unpleasant, but when they've been fixed, then they are happy and sedate. They are contented and cheerful. They don't go around peeing on the furniture and such."
If you can't even fight for yourself, why would anyone believe you'll fight for them?[Originally posted at Paperwight's Fair Shot on June 19. 2005]
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