Around The ‘Sphere July 11, 2007
Our famous linkfest offering readers interesting links to websites of varying opinions so they can explor the ‘sphere. Links do not not necessarily represent the viewpoints of The Moderate Voice or its writers.
To Leave Iraq ASAP Or Not? A long-range debate between two bloggers with sharply differing ideas is raging. MUST READ DETAILS HERE.
More On The New York Times Calling Fred Thompson’s Wife A “Trophy Wife”: We ran a post on this issue, about a NYT reporter labeling Fred Thompson’s younger wife a “trophy wife.” This journalistic lapse of judgment (and truly rotten editing, since it got into the newspaper) was condemned by people on all sides. Here’s a Fox News report. Many in the center and left were outraged as well. But there are some on both sides who feel that in politics anything that helps denigrate and defeat the opposition is fair game. They should not complain, then, if their side takes an unfair political or journalistic hit. Thinking Americans on ALL sides need to demand higher journalistic standards and campaigns that focus on I-S-S-U-E-S. (But that’s like demanding no cal pizza).
The Politically Late Rick Santorum Predicts There Will Be A Terrorist Attack And People Will Vote Republican: But Philadelphia Will Do asks about the logic in that. And Digby has some thoughts.
SO DOES YOURS TRULY: It’s highly unlikely that if there were another terrorist attack George Bush will receive the same support from such a cross-section of Americans. Many Democrats feel his administration used their support against them, to paint them weak on terrorism and get them to go along with policies and, if they didn’t, use it against them politically. The bottom, undeniable line is that this administration has a monster credibility problem among most Americans except those who adjust their thinking to whatever Rush and Sean endorse. And that increasingly does not automatically include all Republicans. Also: another terrorist act would not erase the intense Bush and GOP fatigue felt by many independent voters who now seem poised to support the Democrats in 2008.
Should Homeland Security Chief Michael Chertoff Be Fired because he told the Chicago Tribune he has a “gut feeling” there will be a terrorist attack on the U.S. this summer? John Amato thinks so. Here’s a small part of his post which should be read in full:
Where does he get off inciting fear throughout this country? Heâ€™s not employed to tell us his feeling or his inner child. He should be instructing all of Homeland Security to be on high alert and not try to scare the beejesus out of America.
This is a calculated move to ratchet up the terror in this country to help Republican candidatesâ€”PERIOD. They are far behind in raising money and in all the polls. He should be fired, but of course since heâ€™s being instructed to say these things (sounds like a Cheney/Rove ploy) he wonâ€™t be…Update: I forgot about Tom Ridgeâ€™s phony terror alerts â€¦
And yes, this again underscores the Bush administration’s credibility problems. Some facts are: (1) 911 happened (2) Al Qaeda is highly likely to try again and try something bigger that’ll produce more deaths than September 11 (3) There are many indications now that the administration used terrorism alerts and the color coding system during the elections to highlight the terrorism issue — seemingly following by the number out-in-the-open advice from Fox News contributor Dick Morris on pulling out all stops on the security issue to keep national awareness up and paint the Demmies as soft on terrorism (4) Tom Ridge later suggested he didn’t agree with some of the terrorism alerts, which were instigated from elsewhere in the administration (from that guy who “lost” all the important emails??).
The final part of the bottom line is that Bush & Co now have themselves in an almost untenable situation. Even if there IS a serious threat, a group of Americans will believe it’s all hype to insert a political issue into the mix to rally Americans to support the GOP. Even worse, there’s a smaller percentage that even suggests an attack could be part of an administration plan (while driving yesterday from Los Angeles to San Diego I heard a progressive talk show host suggest that meetings tomorrow at the White House on reports of an Al Qaeda cell coming this way might be to plan a terrorist attack and use it politically. That was a bit too much so I switched to the all-news station).
After 911 Bush was gifted unprecedented bipartisan support and enjoyed credibility. Both evaporated — and not because of nasty liberals or power-hungry Democrats in Congress but because the administration chose to politicize the terrorism issue and use it against the Democrats. It’s part of this administration’s motif to use the power it has, extend the power and run roughshod over those who oppose it (which we now see in the way the executive branch treats an elected Congress).
The result: when Chertoff talks about a “gut feeling” too many people now say: “Uh, oh. Bush is in trouble so now they’re going to start raising the terrorism issue and issuing color alerts again. There will be warnings and reports — And suggestions that those who break with the administration are enabling terrorists.”
Time will tell…….. But the sad part is: if those folks are wrong and it is for real, everyone will find out the hard way. And Bush won’t get the kind of support he got last time since he burned so many Americans who aren’t members of the GOP.
Climate Change And Darfur: Are The Two Meaningfully Connected? Josh Trevino has some provocative-as-usual thoughts.