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Saturday, January 20, 2007


Non-fatal poison

This remark from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has been labelled "poisonous" by the White House. Pretty mild poison, I'd say:
"Democrats will never cut off funding for our troops when they are in harm's way, but we will hold the president accountable."
The second part of the sentence is rather lacking in credibility, given Pelosi's sworn aversion to any talk of impeachment. Are they planning to slap Bush's knuckles with a ruler, perhaps?

But the first part of the sentence is more significant, and equally nonsensical. Yes, the troops are now "in harm's way." But there are already tens (if not hundreds) of billions of unspent dollars in the Pentagon's budget, more than enough to get the troops out of "harm's way" even if all additional funding were cut to zero. Does Pelosi really think that if the Congress votes today to cut off funding, the troops are going to have to walk home through a gauntlet of heavily-armed resistance fighters? No, of course not, but she's counting on the specter of "cutting off funding while the troops are in harm's way" to deflect the American public from the reality, which is that the Democrats (with a handful of exceptions) would like to leave the impression of being against the war, without actually being against the war.

By the way, I titled this post "non-fatal poison." It should be obvious that was strictly a symbolic remark. There are all too many fatalities awaiting both Iraqis and American troops in the future, courtesy of both the White House and the Congress.

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