Where the hell has he been the last seven years? Just what we need -- another Democrat who chose to remain deaf and mute in the face of the relentless Republican assault on foundational values of our country. I never heard a peep from Nunn even about his pet cause during all this time. Was George Bush doing such a great job of containing loose nukes that Nunn felt he could sit back and relax? Maybe, like our other fabulous Democratic leaders now in Congress, he was just "keeping his powder dry" for a real battle like reactionary Supreme Court justices, or torture, or turning the Justice Department into a patronage machine, or shredding the fourth amendment, or ... oh never mind.
I had exactly the same reaction when I read this article last night. I know there is a "beltway mentality," but are these "journalists" even American citizens? Do the principles on which this country is founded mean nothing to them? If protecting the constitution is indeed "politically risky," isn't that a story in and of itself?
This is the kind of thing The Daily Howler has been screaming about for years. How hard is it to prepare for an interview against O'Reilly, for crying out loud, whose lies are so well-documented? All Letterman did was reinforce the caricature of the liberal elitist.
Which was the opposite of how O'Reilly's ass was kicked on The Daily Show. When Falafel accused Jon Stewart of adding "insult to injury" in our political discourse, Stewart shot back, "Yeah, but you're injury!"
Let's not forget that McCain supported Alberto Gonzales, whose legalistic gymnastics in favor of torture should have ruled him out immediately as head of the Justice Department. McCain's amendment notwithstanding, you can't be against torture while simultaneously supporting -- for the JUSTICE department, for God's sake -- someone who bends over backwards to justify torture.
Where ARE the Democrats on this issue? The only names I hear on this topic are McCain and Hagel. In fact, I've read whole articles about McCain's amendment that fail to mention even ONE Democratic name. McCain obviously has a unique perspective on this issue, but, to my mind, his authority is significantly diluted by his warm embrace (literal and figurative) of Bush and his vote for Alberto Gonzales as AG. I mean, if you're seriously against torture, why would you take an active role in elevating a torture apologist to head the JUSTICE department?
In his speech a few months ago comparing our treatment of prisoners to the Nazis and the Soviets, Dick Durbin took a typical Democratic tack: Make a strong stand and then run away with your tail between your legs when the nasty Republicans start picking on you. The Republicans screamed, but look who was right? I wonder what Durbin thinks of his apology now.
The world is truly at a scary crossroads if America -- the shining city on a hill, the country that embodies respect for the rule of law, that champions individual dignity -- has to seriously debate whether it should torture people. And if Democrats have to hide behind Republican coattails on this, of all issues, then their irrelevance as a party is complete.
I remember this very distinctly: Kerry was in the Grand Canyon last year when a reporter asked him if, knowing what he knew now, if he'd still vote to give Bush the power to use force in Iraq. I held my breath as he paused for a moment, then said, "YES," followed by some long Kerry-like explanation. I felt sick to my stomach after the first word and didn't pay any attention to the rest. Even Jon Stewart noticed: the clip was played on the Daily Show, after which Stewart put his head on the table, then looked up and asked weakly, "Are you TRYING to lose?"
My impression then, as now, was that Kerry indeed lost the election at that moment.
Where the hell are the Democrats? I can't imagine a more unequivocal issue on which to take a stand. Is there some political fallout to being against torture? How is it possible that we can let those who supported torture facilitator Alberto Gonzales as Attorney General be the anti-torture poster boys? This is making me crazy!