Dog Pack Politics

By way of First Draft, we learned that on June 15, Senator Dick Durbin seemed to have no intention of backing down from his statments concerning the torture at Guantanamo Bay:

"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."

I 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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Comments

2 Comments

Damn cry in public and you lose....
That said lets get a list of all the bastards who stabbed Durbin in the back....

Torture is our wedge...who the fuck said its shameful to talk about.....

Daly I am talking to you....Never in my life will I vote for you.

Durbin was right and should have held tough but that is easier said than done when you are getting hate calls etc.  Props Durbin you were onto something.

Dean....I really hate to say this but here is your que to say we have a president who made it easier and more accepted to torture a prisoner and harder  and less accepted for a journalist to quote an anonymus source...

Dean....but no more talk about christians, white or lazy...those aren't our wedges.

by donkeykong 2005-06-21 03:51PM | 0 recs
Aaaargh!
I'm so sick of this.  

Some idiots who would never vote for him anyway raise their voices, and he cowers and blubbers an apology he should never have made.  (Memo to Dick:  They'd never attack you if they knew you'd ignore them -- or just give them the back of your hand.)

I'm sick of Democrats thinking that they must kowtow every time a Republican or a Republican-friendly media lackey frowns.  

I'm sick of Democrats attacking other Democrats in public.  (When was the last time you saw John McCain say that a Republican had to apologize for anything?)

I'm sick of Democrats being punished for saying that water is wet -- and I'm sick of Democrats who fold and apologize like victims of Maoist confession sessions for daring to say what we all know to be true.

When will Democrats like Durbin realize that Americans don't like wusses?  As Clinton said, we'll take strong and wrong over weak and right.  Durbin's apology does much harm and no good.  People see this and think "If that doofus doesn't have the spine to stand up for himself, what makes you think he'll stand up for you or me?"

Aaarrrrrgh.

http://www.answers.com/topic/richard-durbin

by Phoenix Woman 2005-06-21 09:38PM | 0 recs

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