Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Carnival of the Commies: Special SOTU edition 

I missed the State of the Union address since I was at dinner with a bunch of bankers, having to settle for the second half with a NPR voiceover on the drive home. I've surfed around and read some of the righty live-blogging sessions (Michelle Malkin has a list), but the Son's homework isn't done around here and I don't have the energy to watch the recording.

But, having a slight buzz on, I did think it would be entertaining to see what the lefty bloggers were saying. Herewith, a one-time revival of my old "Carnival of the Commies" series, the best of the lefty blogs on the SOTU (including the preparations therefore). Yes, we read all that rage, snark and disrespect so you don't have to.

Frequent commenter Screwy Hoolie (whom we appreciate for his tenacity) signs up to host a Republican SOTU party. Who knew there were such things? His line-by-line fisking is here.

AMERICABlog is on a roll. John Aravosis posted the transcript under the title "If you don't want to watch the chimp...". In a post with a busted permalink, he offers this comment on Cindy Sheehan's pre-speech arrest:
You want to know the State of the Union? The president is jailing his political opponents minutes before his big speech about how wonderful our democracy is.

I was unaware that the administration arrested people inside the Capitol. I sort of imagined that it was one of the 1300 officers of the U.S. Capitol police force that did that.

Aravosis summarized his "take," this being his pithiest observation:
I got the sense that the entire speech was not a challenge to the Democrats, but rather a challenge to 61% of the American public who either don't approve of Bush or are unsure.

Sounds right, actually, and it dovetails well with Kevin Drum's wrap-up observation (quoted and linked below).

The comments in AMERICABlog's various "open threads" give a good glimpse of the left's anger toward the President.

Juan Cole predicted the top ten things "Bush won't tell you about the state of the nation." Cole was correct that Bush did not mention these things.

Arianna Huffington really hated the Democratic response, which she believed should have focused on Iraq:
All my worst fears about the Democratic response to the State of the Union address being given by Virginia Gov Kaine were realized tonight when he completely failed to take on the president on his greatest vulnerability -- the war in Iraq. “Second guessing is not a strategy,” Bush said -- but Kaine didn’t even bother to second-guess.

Instead, he told us “together, we can do better” (I swear he did!) and that “our greatest need is to heal our partisan wounds.” Now if I can only figure out how to heal these fresh wounds on my wrists, we’ll be fine. At least, together we’ll be fine.

Kaine couldn't say anything about Iraq because there is no agreement within the party about what our policy should be over the next three years. You can't give a "Democratic response" if there is no Democratic response. (N.B.: Huffington reveals in this brief note that she is willing to help the enemy achieve its victory conditions if that is what it takes to elect Democrats.)

Paul Rieckhoff didn't like the "props":
It is a callous thing to make the family of a fallen Marine props for a stubborn agenda.

But that is what President Bush did tonight in his State of the Union address when he called on the family of Marine Staff Sgt. Dan Clay to stand up in order to demonstrate proud and stalwart evidence for the righteousness of his course in Iraq, garnering the longest applause of the evening.

One is forced to wonder whether Rieckhoff thinks Democrats who "make" Cindy Sheehan a prop for their stubborn agenda -- which in some cases has remain fixed since 1968 -- are doing "a callous thing." Could somebody explain the difference?

Kevin Drum live-blogged. Best line:
"Roosevelt to Truman to Kennedy to Reagan"? What happened to Ike and Nixon and Ford and Dad? Is Bush embarrassed of his own party?

Drum's wrapup:
The international part of the speech was mushier, more platitudinous than usual. In fact, what's interesting is that I think that entire section of the address could have been given by a President Kerry with no more than a few sentences changed.

Tom Tomorrow renders the entire SOTU into pirate-speak. Heh. A sample:
Our work in Iraq be difficult, on accoun’ o’ our enemy be brutal. But that brutality has nay stopped th’ dramatic progress o’ a new democracy. In less than three voyages, that nation has gone from dictatorship, t’ liberation, t’ sovereignty, t’ a constitution, t’ national elections. At th’ same time, our coalition be relentless in shuttin’ off terrorist infiltration, clearin’ ou’ insurgent strongholds, an’ turnin’ o’er territory t’ Iraqi security forces. I be confident in our plan fer victory ? I be confident in th’ will o’ th’ Iraqi swabbies ? I be confident in th’ skill an’ spirit o’ our military. Swabbie citizens, we be in this swashbuckle t’ win, an’ we be winnin’.

That's all I have tonight.


By Blogger Gordon Smith, at Wed Feb 01, 08:34:00 AM:

Screwy Hoolie, Tenacious Commie.


Thanks for the shoutout, Hawk.  

By Blogger Cassandra, at Wed Feb 01, 12:00:00 PM:

One is forced to wonder whether Rieckhoff thinks Democrats who "make" Cindy Sheehan a prop for their stubborn agenda -- which in some cases has remain fixed since 1968 -- are doing "a callous thing." Could somebody explain the difference?

Yeah... I can explain the difference. In the case of the SOTU address, the "fallen" individual would have approved heartily. He didn't have to write any of that in his last letter. But he did.

In Cindy Sheehan's case, it is highly doubtful that he would have, since he *voluntarily* signed up knowing it was his job to go to war and she has come right out and said she thinks war is ALWAYS wrong and America is nothing but an imperialist aggressor (and has been for most of its history, oh-by-the-way). So what does she think her son signed up for?

THAT's the difference. Both sides have on more than one occasion claimed to be speaking for the troops.

But only one side of this particular debate can say that with any honesty. And if you doubt that for one second, I dare Cindy Sheehan and her band to set foot on any military base and soak up the love. It ought to be an eye-opening experience for her.  

By Blogger Cassandra, at Wed Feb 01, 12:17:00 PM:

Oh dear Lord... I can't stand it, TH. Best line??? It makes no sense.

I didn't even see the speech - I had a family emergency yesterday and by the time I got home I was so beat I just went to bed early.

But that has got to be the dumbest quote I've seen in a while. It's a cheap shot and dishonest too, since he purposely left out half the quote:

"Roosevelt to Truman to Kennedy to Reagan"? What happened to Ike and Nixon and Ford and Dad? Is Bush embarrassed of his own party?

Gosh, let's look at the original quote:

American leaders -- from Roosevelt, to Truman, to Kennedy, to Reagan -- rejected isolation and retreat because they knew that America is always more secure when freedom is on the march.

Ah, so if you include the entire quote, it becomes clear to anyone with half a brain that he picked those particular presidents for historical reasons. Let's see:

Nixon withdrew from Vietnam.

Ford... ummm what war was Ford in again? What firm stance did he take against a brutal regime? Yeah, I thought so.

Eisenhower: during his presidency, er... what stance did he take that fits the quote?

Bush I: he could have brought up Gulf I and then the Dems would have crucified him. I wouldn't have cited my Dad either.

On the other hand:

Roosevelt: Took us into WWII/response to Pearl Harbor

Truman: I'm assuming he's listed because of the Korean War

Kennedy: Well, Kennedy *did* get us into Vietnam. Cuban missile crisis?

Reagan: 4 words -- "tear down that wall"

If Drum hadn't wanted to take a cheap shot, he might have noted that Bush was making a non-partisan gesture -- saying the Dems don't have a history of being soft on national security. But that would have taken a certain amount of insight and grace.  

By Blogger St Wendeler, at Wed Feb 01, 01:57:00 PM:

with regard to the historical line of presidents, it's instructive that the moonbats expect that Bush can (and should) only mention presidents that share his party affiliation...

While I'm a republican, I admire the foreign policy of each of the presidents that Bush mentioned.

The Dems decry the partisanship and the divisiveness, but they are the ones that cannot see the American polity, just the party affiliation.

Great post, TH.

St Wendeler
Another Rovian Conspiracy  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Wed Feb 01, 02:45:00 PM:

Actually Bush gets a twofer for the Roosevelt reference. Teddy wasn't afraid to project a little American power when it was called for either.  

By Blogger TigerHawk, at Wed Feb 01, 04:49:00 PM:

OK, Cass: When I use the term "best line" in a Carnival of the Commies post, I don't mean "best line" in the usual sense. I mean "best" from their perspective. I try to imagine that I, TigerHawk, am also a Commie, and then I try to figure out what I would like if that were true.

And, no, I don't actually mean that these people are communists. It's just the term we had back when we did not know what a barking moonbat was.  

By Blogger Cassandra, at Thu Feb 02, 06:52:00 AM:

Ah... the light dawns.

He seemed to be trying to make that point awfully hard throughout. I'm sorry for being crabby, but it never fails to amaze me when the opposition snarks away about Bush not being a "uniter" and then when he tries to reach across the aisle, they snark away at him for not being sufficiently partisan!

Kind of puts the lie to any pretense that this is the kind of behavior they really want from him - the bottom line is that no matter what he says, they will find some metaphorical bone to pick with it.

And that makes it very difficult to read them with any respect. When Clinton was in office, I disliked the man and didn't agree with many of his policies, but I could admit when he did get something right. The tone of the Lefty 'sphere seems to be that *nothing* Bush does is ever right, which amuses me no end in light of the heat he takes from the Right for being less reich-wing than thou.

Try meeting the guy half-way.  

By Blogger Cassandra, at Thu Feb 02, 06:56:00 AM:

And by the way, my 'half a brain' reference obviously (at least to me) wasn't aimed at you.

I figured you hadn't seen the speech (I hadn't either) and the entire purpose of omitting the 2nd half of the quote was to mislead those who either didn't see the speech or weren't paying attention. And purposely truncating quotes so they will be read out of context in order to ridicule them isn't a terribly impressive tactic unless you aspire to the rhetorical heights reached by Mo Dowd.

But maybe that's what he was aiming for.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Mon Nov 10, 12:10:00 AM:


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