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Murtha: Party over nation
Posted by: McQ on Saturday, January 07, 2006

Good grief. Byron York writes about a little "townhall meeting" attended by John Murtha (and James Moran ... now there's a pair to draw too) and promoted by MoveOn.org:
Representative John Murtha, the Pennsylvania Democrat who has come to national prominence since his call for a quick withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq, said Thursday night that he worries about "a slow withdrawal which makes it look like there's a victory."

[...]

Appearing at a town meeting in Arlington, Virginia, with fellow Democratic Rep. James Moran, Murtha said, "A year ago, I said we can't win this militarily, and I got all kinds of criticism." Now, Murtha told the strongly antiwar audience, "I worry about a slow withdrawal which makes it look like there's a victory when I think it should be a redeployment as quickly as possible and let the Iraqis handle the whole thing."
I am deeply tired of this sort of thing. I read this yesterday, read it again, slept on it, and read it for the third time this morning. Unless I'm missing something significant, this is simply a stunning admission. "I worry about a slow withdralw which makes it look like there's a victory ...".

Victory would be absolutely horrible wouldn't it Rep. Murtha? And how so? Well politically of course. Can't have those nasty Republicans having a 'victory' can we?

Don't believe me? Check the followup comments:
Murtha said he has told some Democrats who are considering a run for president that they are missing an opportunity by declining to call for a rapid withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq. "A number of senators who are running for president have called me," Murtha said. "And I told them there's only two policies. That's the policy of redeployment, which I've suggested, and the president's policy — stay the course is not a policy. And you folks, you're in between, you're missing an opportunity to show leadership. If you want to run for president, you can show leadership."
The new euphemism for putting party over nation? "Show[ing] leadership". Murtha, that grand old sage, is saying "jump on my "let's pull out now" bandwagon and "show leadership". Then, if successful, we can be assured that Iraq will not be perceived as a "victory".

For someone so concerned with the troops, he'd deny them the victory they're fighting for so hard. He'd prefer, it seems, that his political opponents be regarded as failures (and Iraq, at best, not be considered a victory and at worst be considered a defeat) than see the troops come home victorious and with honor.

He and Democratic Rep. James Moran fielded questions from the MoveOn.com crowd and, of course, the "I" word was discussed:
The loudest, longest applause of the evening came not after any statement by Murtha or Moran but after a member of the audience said that "Bush and his cronies" had been "criminally negligent" in the run-up to the war in Iraq. "My question is simple," the man continued. "With this criminal negligence going on, why shouldn't you impeach Bush/Cheney?"

"I tell you, I get a lot of letters just like that," Murtha said. But he did not answer the question, turning instead to the enthusiastic reception he has received after taking his antiwar stance. Moran, however, took the issue straight on.

"I don't think impeachment is the right course of action," he said. "We have a democracy, and the right course of action is to express yourself at the polls."

"I voted against President Clinton's impeachment," Moran continued. "I think impeachment is inconsistent with the democratic process. And the other fact is, it's not going to happen. Congress is controlled by the Republican party. This is a moot issue."

Later, as he was leaving the meeting, Murtha was asked about impeachment by National Review Online. "At this point, we just don't have enough information," he said. "I'm very hesitant, even with Nixon, to support impeachment until I see the facts. And I just don't see enough facts to support impeachment at this point."

Asked whether he would support an impeachment inquiry, Murtha continued: "Well, I'm not even sure that I have enough facts to support that at this point. There's only one reason for impeachment as far as I'm concerned, and that's treason and treasonous acts. That's very complicated, not something I can answer. I hesitated to say anything about Nixon until the very end when I heard the tapes, so that's not something I would say anything about at this stage."
Said another way, "it's a moot issue now". Hope, I'm sure, springs eternal within the hearts of the extreme left, and with the '06 midterms approaching they can't help but be praying that the Dems will carry enough to make impeachment more than a moot point. The "I" word will be seen more often in the coming months, not less.

I don't know, maybe I'm just an old fool who doesn't understand this sort of thinking and this sort of talk. We have troops engaged in combat and we have a leader in Congress who's suggesting he wants them withdrawn quickly so he can assure it doesn't seem like a victory.

No wonder GEN Pace spoke out against Murtha last week. And maybe, just maybe, the citizens of PA will follow Moran's advice and "impeach" Rep. Murtha at the ballot box this year.

UPDATE: GEN Pace wasn't the only one who spoke out against Murtha. A young infantry sergeant (and squad leader) spoke up as well in the townhall meeting:
"Yes sir my name is Mark Seavey and I just want to thank you for coming up here. Until about a month ago I was Sgt Mark Seavey infantry squad leader, I returned from Afghanistan. My question to you, (applause)

"Like yourself I dropped out of college two years ago to volunteer to go to Afghanistan, and I went and I came back. If I didn't have a herniated disk now I would volunteer to go to Iraq in a second with my troops, three of which have already volunteered to go to Iraq. I keep hearing you say how you talk to the troops and the troops are demoralized, and I really resent that characterization. (applause) The morale of the troops that I talk to is phenomenal, which is why my troops are volunteering to go back, despite the hardships they had to endure in Afghanistan.

"And Congressman Moran, 200 of your constituents just returned from Afghanistan. We never got a letter from you; we never got a visit from you. You didn't come to our homecoming. The only thing we got from any of our elected officials was one letter from the governor of this state thanking us for our service in Iraq, when we were in Afghanistan. That's reprehensible. I don't know who you two are talking to but the morale of the troops is very high."
(HT: reader Marlin)

Another who spoke truth to nonsense at this event was Gen. Wagner, a Vietnam vet:
I visit Walter Reed [Army Hospital] and talk to the young soldiers with their legs blown off. I know you do, too. I can't find one in a dozen that don't believe that they are fighting for a noble cause and are fighting to go back. And I think it's a disgrace when members of our Congress —just as they did in 1975 when they sold out the south Vietnamese—are selling out our soldiers today in Iraq!
Indeed.
 
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Unless I’m missing something significant, this is simply a stunning admission.
heightened sense several times in a been taken to task for it and equal number of times; "The Democrats are deeply invested in our defeat." I’ve been saying they want us to fail because it’s the only way their party can win. And saying it right along... both here and elsewhere.

So... while I certainly understand your reaction... I for one, am not shocked or stunned, merely vindicated.

 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
"I don’t know, maybe I’m just an old fool who doesn’t understand this sort of thinking and this sort of talk. We have troops engaged in combat and we have a leader in Congress who’s suggesting he wants them withdrawn quickly so he can assure it doesn’t seem like a victory."

No, you’ve got it right. This is the heart and soul of the Democratic Party. They hope like hell it looks like we lose a war, and are willing to take steps to ensure it is lost, because they think it will help their domestic political situation. They are in the poor domestic situation they are in, in part because they cannot imagine that we deserve to win, and the majority of Americans so far reject that premise and all that is connected with it.

Yours, Tom Perkins,
molon labe,
montani semper liberi, &
para fides paternae patria
 
Written By: Tom Perkins
URL: http://
McQ, I had exactly the same reaction when I read Murtha’s comments. And I’ve said before in comments on this very board that there is a class of leftists who would prefer defeat to a victory that Republicans get credit for. And that’s sick.

The real problem as I see it is that, when confronted, they refuse to admit their true position on this. If you sat before Murtha today, with clear evidence that he would rather us lose than Bush look good, he would deny it vociferously.

They won’t admit it to us; they won’t even admit it to themselves. But get them together in big enough homogeneous leftist groups (DU, for example, or that MoveOn meeting with Murtha), and the truth comes out. Their inhibitions slip as they say what they really feel, because subconsciously they think it won’t get out into the wider world, and they know the present company agrees with them.

It’s sick, I say, and it’s one of the major reasons I stopped arguing with leftists about this war. (Another is their blatant dishonesty in the propogating the "Bush lied" meme.)

Now, to be fair, there are anti-war types that don’t feel that way. The current way-too-hip crowd at Reason Magazine are good examples, I think. Julian Sanchez, Matt Welch, and their ilk do not, I think, really wish us to fail. There’s just so arrogant that they rarely admit the possibility that they might be wrong about our chances for success, and they have shown more than a tinge of Bush Derangement Syndrome. With those, it just comes down to "agree to disagree", and we’ll see how things turn out. They’re not actively working for our failure.

But such types are the minority, I think, of the anti-war contingent. The rest want us to fail, and the only reason I can think of is that they fear Republicans more than they fear Islamists. Though Islamists killed 3000 people, most New Yorkers that are their ideological allies, they still fear and hate Republicans more. And that’s sick, too.
 
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
But don’t question his patriotism!

Look, this is all about a pathetic old man trying to get attention. He even admitted that he only went so public with his antiwar stance because W didn’t kiss his ass like his father did. So now Murtha is fielding all these calls from "senators running for president"- he must be loving it! From getting ignored by the President to playing kingmaker! (only in his own mind of course)

He’s a lot like Cindy Sheehan in that regard, she’s another one who is loving all the attention lavished on her by the press.

Just a selfish old man who needs attention. Maybe he should try a cat instead of treason...
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
And I’ve said before in comments on this very board that there is a class of leftists who would prefer defeat to a victory that Republicans get credit for. And that’s sick.
Billy, the only way that the democrat leadership would be getting away with the anti American stance that they’ve been taking is that the rank and file democrats that are left agree with them. think about it; once the last time you saw anybody stand up to Howard Dean, John Murtha, John Kerry, et al on their clearly anti-American stands?

You haven’t.

one way of dealing with the problem I suppose is to claim that the same portion of the party is being silent ala Nixon’s "Silent Majority".

But it seems clear that the only logical conclusion to draw from that lack, is that the only people that are left in the Democratic party of today, are the ones who agree with the leadership of the party on those issues.


And by the way... Sorry I didn’t catch the error on the first post. It should read:

I’ve said several times, and have been taken to task for it and equal number of times;
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
There is an equally interesting post about an interaction later in this town hall meeting later with a General Wagner. You can read about it at The Mudville Gazette. Murtha and Moran are a pair that I cannot believe. They simply do not deserve their positions of authority.

More Town Hall
 
Written By: Marlin
URL: http://
If Republicans were any more stupid, they’d need to hire individual personal assistants to follow them around cleaning up the drool.

Murtha’s comment is obviously in line with the idea that a slow pullout that ’resembles’ victory, is not exactly the same thing as an actual victory. For people who think Bush is a visionary, something that’s dressed up like victory but isn’t is probably enough.

I’m wholly un-impressed with your adherence to the idea that this war is somehow a good thing.

Victory? We mobilized the entire nation to defeat Germany, Italy, and Japan in 4 years.

Bush can’t beat down a rag-tag bunch of Arab insurgents in the same ammount of time.

Victory? This is the biggest foreign-policy cluster-fuck in the history of the Nation. This...is a tarbaby of a mess.

If you think opposing this war is treasonous, you’re clearly irretrievably stupid.

Who’s more American; the people who think that America should be a shining light to the rest of the world, or people who think that’s it’s good to fake the evidence, to spy on Americans inthe name of Security, to bully, to torture, to invade without just cause?

You people are going to get OWNED in the next Congressional elections. Get ready to be impeached, shortly thereafter.

This time, it’ll be for something genuinely criminal.
 
Written By: Dave Williams
URL: http://
der......!

Murtha, in saying "a victory" is talking about a slow victory in appearance for the TERRORISTS, you fool. not for america. he is worried about a slow withdrawal that brings about instances and events that look like failure, because we are "trailing" out of there, trickling out, instead of all at once, which looks like a decision we’ve made all at once, not running away bit by bit which will decrease our troop presence in important places, and highlight attacks on these areas...oh whats the bother. you dont even get what you read by yourself.
 
Written By: McQueeir Finagle
URL: http:/www.qando.net
Murtha’s comment is obviously in line with the idea that a slow pullout that ’resembles’ victory, is not exactly the same thing as an actual victory. For people who think Bush is a visionary, something that’s dressed up like victory but isn’t is probably enough.

Ah, a interpretor appears. Now speaking for Murtha are we?

He wants to hand it over to the Iraqis immediately (as he says quite clearly), even when our military says they’re not yet ready for primetime. That has zip to do with your rather laughable interpretation. It is, however, an absolute recipe for failure and defeat.

If you don’t believe that, read his further comments:
"A number of senators who are running for president have called me," Murtha said. "And I told them there’s only two policies. That’s the policy of redeployment, which I’ve suggested, and the president’s policy - stay the course is not a policy.
Get out now, or "stay the course", and "stay the course" is not an option per Murtha. Translation: let’s cut out now and ensure defeat so there’ll be no doubt.

Spin away, Mr. Williams, it’s a no sale here (although you seem to somehow have impressed our loathsome resident anti-Semite, which, I might add, isn’t particularly hard). Given what Murtha said and has said, I’ll stick with my interpretation, thankyouverymuch. It seem much more plausible.

Of course, the proof of the pudding will be when the US in fact withdraws and whether the Iraqis can then handle the insurgency. If they can and do, it’s a victory. If not then it’s going to be seen as a defeat. The timeframe in which we withdraw them is irrelevant in that regard, if the goal is victory and an Iraq which is able to defend itself. Murtha apparently doesn’t want the possiblity of victory being an option and claims the only option is to get out now.

Who’s more American; the people who think that America should be a shining light to the rest of the world, or people who think that’s it’s good to fake the evidence, to spy on Americans in the name of Security, to bully, to torture, to invade without just cause?

Speaking of spin, your spots are showing.

If you think opposing this war is treasonous, you’re clearly irretrievably stupid.

Who mentioned a thing about treason?

But let me ask you something. Do you see a difference between "I think we ought to withdraw our troops now because the war is wrong" and "I worry about a slow withdrawal which makes it look like there’s a victory ..."?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
You people are going to get OWNED in the next Congressional elections
Sadly, he’s right. Libertarians will fail to become a majority party. Dave is a genius!
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
...oh whats the bother. you dont even get what you read by yourself.

Couldn’t quite finish it with a straight face, could you?

Once again it was:

Murtha, in saying "a victory" is talking about a slow victory in appearance for the TERRORISTS, you fool. not for america.

Pathetic. Victory isn’t dictated by the speed of our withdrawl. It’s dictated by the ability of the Iraqi nation to defend itself.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
Correct.
Ace says it well, this morning;

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: they are desperate to lose this war as quickly as possible because it appears that we just might win. They know they cannot survive the political consequences of an American victory of which they were most assuredly not a part.
Clearly, that is their biggest worry.

Ya know, I have taken heat repeatedly for saying America’s biggest enemy is the Democratic party. This thread clearly demonstrates I’ve been right all along.

The enemy inside after all, is the hardest one to defeat... and clearly, working for our defeat qualifies them.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
Dave Williams wrote:

"If Republicans were any more stupid, they’d need to hire individual personal assistants to follow them around cleaning up the drool."

A reciprocated feeling, I assure you.

"Murtha’s comment is obviously in line with the idea that a slow pullout that ’resembles’ victory, is not exactly the same thing as an actual victory. For people who think Bush is a visionary, something that’s dressed up like victory but isn’t is probably enough."

This is what Murtha said:
"I worry about a slow withdrawal which makes it look like there’s a victory when I think it should be a redeployment as quickly as possible and let the Iraqis handle the whole thing."
If Murtha means he thinks it is possible to withdraw now, that the Iraqi’s can handle it now, he should make that case and he hasn’t tried to. His statements are only consistent with the idea, that we have already lost and need to cut our losses. This is at variance with the reality on the ground. The only thing that could possibly trouble him about there appearing to be a victory is that only a defeat can help the Democrats, in all other ways, the appearance of victory is to some degree a positive thing for the American Nation.

"I’m wholly un-impressed with your adherence to the idea that this war is somehow a good thing."

I’m wholly unimpressed with your idea it’s a bad thing.

"Victory? We mobilized the entire nation to defeat Germany, Italy, and Japan in 4 years."

With people like Murtha, are you surprised we haven’t mobilized the whole nation?

"Bush can’t beat down a rag-tag bunch of Arab insurgents in the same ammount of time."

The option to tolerating an insurgency in this case is to kill every human there without an American flag on. Is that the option you prefer?

"Victory? This is the biggest foreign-policy cluster-fuck in the history of the Nation. This...is a tarbaby of a mess."

No, the attitudes and responses on our part that led to AlQaeda thinking it would benefit from 9/11—that was the biggest cluster-fuck in the recent history of the nation. I think not taking Canada was probably the biggest over-all.

"If you think opposing this war is treasonous, you’re clearly irretrievably stupid."

If you think wishing out loud for our troops to appear defeated is not treason of some sort, you’re too screwed up for me to care what you think, except to easily knock holes in your argument in the unlikely event you actually attempt to support your assertions with evidence or conjecture.

"Who’s more American; the people who think that America should be a shining light to the rest of the world, or people who think that’s it’s good to fake the evidence, to spy on Americans inthe name of Security, to bully, to torture, to invade without just cause?"

America is a shining light to world and we are bringing that light to Iraq. That will destroy our wahhabist enemies. What fake evidence? Why is spying on people who are talking to AlQaeda a bad thing? Being the greatest power on the block doesn’t mean having to tolerate being shot at! What "torture", panties on the head? We invaded Iraq with perfectly just cause. If you think not, prove it.

"You people are going to get OWNED in the next Congressional elections. Get ready to be impeached, shortly thereafter.

This time, it’ll be for something genuinely criminal."

The Democrats will lose seats in this election as the Republican party runs ads showing Murtha hoping out loud with the cameras on, hoping that our troops appear to be defeated.

Yours, TDP, ml, msl, & pfpp
 
Written By: Tom Perkins
URL: http://
Ya know, I have taken heat repeatedly for saying America’s biggest enemy is the Democratic party. This thread clearly demonstrates I’ve been right all along.

Actually you’ve been criticized for using too broad a brush in your criticism and I think that’s a valid critique.

I’m going after Murtha and Moran here ... not the "Democratic party" because I don’t believe Murtha and Moran represent the whole of the Democratic party anymore than I feel the RINOS represent the whole of the Republican party. However, given your propensity to identify every misstep by a Democrat as indicative of the party as a whole, it would seem the same argument could be made for the RINOS.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
McQueeir Finagle wrote:

"Murtha, in saying "a victory" is talking about a slow victory in appearance for the TERRORISTS, you fool."

Post transcripts and prove it, drip!

"not for america."

Oh I know he’s not talking about America having a victory, he wants us defeated.

"he is worried about a slow withdrawal that brings about instances and events that look like failure, because we are "trailing" out of there, trickling out, instead of all at once,"

Continuing to take losses until the last soldier leaves does not mean we are defeated.

"which looks like a decision we’ve made all at once, not running away bit by bit which will decrease our troop presence in important places, and highlight attacks on these areas...oh whats the bother. you dont even get what you read by yourself."

You don’t understand that we are proposing to leave bit by bit as Iraqi forces replace ours in important areas. Where the hell did you get the idea it meant anything else? Of course some of the insurgents will continue attacks after we leave an area, because they want to be in charge instead of the Iraqi government. It doesn’t mean we’ve lost anymore than the one-time active, insurgent existence of the IRA means the UK doesn’t include NI—which it still does.

Yours, TDP, ml, msl, & pfpp
 
Written By: Tom Perkins
URL: http://
he is worried about a slow withdrawal that brings about instances and events that look like failure, because we are "trailing" out of there, trickling out, instead of all at once, which looks like a decision we’ve made all at once, not running away bit by bit which will decrease our troop presence in important places, and highlight attacks on these areas...

Ah, are you outlining the difference between a fighting withdrawal and a rout? And claiming that a rout looks more like victory than a fighting withdrawal?

Even so, the administration’s plan is a relief in place versus Murtha’s rout.

 
Written By: Mark A. Flacy
URL: http://
Bithead wrote:

"Ya know, I have taken heat repeatedly for saying America’s biggest enemy is the Democratic party. This thread clearly demonstrates I’ve been right all along."

In response, McQ wrote:

"Actually you’ve been criticized for using too broad a brush in your criticism and I think that’s a valid critique."

And my response is:

Well, I sure see the Democrats in the house rushing to loudly condemn Murtha and Moran.

I think Murtha is in the mainstream of the subset of voters the Democrats can count on. The Republican mainstream is much closer to the mainstream of the general electorate. This is Murtha and Moran talking the Democratic Party heart and base, and it’s putrid thing.

Yours, TDP, ml, msl, & pfpp
 
Written By: Tom Perkins
URL: http://
Well, I sure see the Democrats in the house rushing to loudly condemn Murtha and Moran.

A party is a big organization Tom. While I understand your point and it has some validity, I still think the brush is too broad in this case to characterize this as representative of the Democratic party.

It’s certainly representative of the extreme left and it certainly is pandering to that constituency, but is it representative of the whole? Not if you talk to the southern Democrats I know (and that’s a bunch of folks).
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
I will take such sentiments seriously, when I see one just one Democratic Party leader publicly tell Martha to sit down and shut up.

Oh, wait we did ..... Lieberman... and they responded by trying to push among the party.

More, where are the rank and file? I haven’t seen any of them object either.

Your concern is that my statement is broad. You’re quite correct, it is. But so too are the implications of not seeing any Democrat at all standing up to this anti-American crap.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
and they responded by trying to push among the party== and they responded by trying to push him out of the party.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
McQ, if the Democrats you know clean house in the primaries, you’ll have a very valid point. My breath is not held. Yours, TDP, ml, msl, & pfpp
 
Written By: Tom Perkins
URL: http://
Bitheat wrote:

"and they responded by trying to push him out of the party."

Which is the only house cleaning I’ve seen the Democrats attempt lately. Yours, TDP, ml, msl, & pfpp
 
Written By: Tom Perkins
URL: http://
I think Mr. Murtha has every right to say what he says whether I agree with him or not. It does not hurt my morale. I want a VICTORY. Not something that LOOKS like a victory. That is what I think he is saying. I say, redeploy to the borders, let the Iraqis stand up for themselves, and when the likes of Zarquawi peep their little heads out, make THEM the target, instead of the slow drip we’re going through. Were targets right now, cannon fodder. Its almost like we are the bait to draw them out. Let the Iraqi’s be the bait. then we can go in and mop them up. Its either that, or committ 200,000 - 300,000 troops. Clear and hold. But right now, China is getting ready for war, and this little drip, drip, leave, is going to hurt us. That what it looks like to me.
Sgt D.
USMC
4th MAW
 
Written By: Sgt Duran
URL: http://
Precisely my point.

In the past it’s been a truism that every party has its radicals its extreme wing. The trouble with the Democrats now is, that the extreme wing IS the party. I think we do ourselves a disservice by wasting time looking for one good Democrat to provide as the exception to the now-etsablished rule. I issued a challenge in that link almost six years ago now. I’ve re-posted it several times since. The challenge remains unanswered.

I take no pleasure from being right, in this instance. But, we better start addressing the facts as they are, and damned soon, if we as a country expect to survive these people.

And Sgt Drum; I’m with you, here, in large part:
I want a VICTORY. Not something that LOOKS like a victory.
I think you’re missing part of the deal here. By saying that as he did, Murtha’s opening up the door for himself and his fellow Democrats to say anything that looks like a victory coming out of Iraq, isn’t. he sang it that way because he knows that damned well that despite his protests we won’t lose.

He’s worried, as Ace says... and I’ll quote him again:
They know they cannot survive the political consequences of an American victory of which they were most assuredly not a part.
What he’s doing is labeling any victory in Iraq, false victory. A word parsing Bill Clinton would be proud of.


 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
So, Murtha puts forth the proposition that to withdraw on our terms on our timetable is preferable to the inevitable ’Peace With Honor’ type of ’Disengagement’ on the enemies terms everybody over 40 remembers so fondly, and the Right jumps all over him.

Just another day in an America doomed to repeat it’s past because nobody paid attention or learned anything the first 3 times it happened.

The military mission was accomplished long ago, George W Bush even said so. I saw it right on television.

 
Written By: Mfawg
URL: http://
Just another day in an America doomed to repeat it’s past because nobody paid attention or learned anything the first 3 times it happened.
Actually, we’re sticking around until the job is done precisely because we have learned from the past. We learn, for example what happens when we listen to the anti- American left and withdraw early, as we did from Vietnam.... we snatch defeat out of the jaws of victory. We also see quite clearly what happens to our military under such circumstances. Yes, we have learned from the past.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
McQ, if the Democrats you know clean house in the primaries, you’ll have a very valid point. My breath is not held.

Unless the "independents" and Republicans help them it isn’t going to happen in Georgia. Just not enough of them.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
So, Murtha puts forth the proposition that to withdraw on our terms on our timetable is preferable to the inevitable ’Peace With Honor’ type of ’Disengagement’ on the enemies terms everybody over 40 remembers so fondly, and the Right jumps all over him.

What part of "events based" don’t you understand?

Who’s making the determination? Ah, we are.

Who’s determining the timetable based on those events.

Again, we are.

So how does that differ from Murtha? He wants us out now, before the job is done.

As pointed out by Nathan Fick:
There was a Marine commandant in the ’80s named P. X. Kelley, who said, in countering popular pressure to pull the Marines out of Beirut: "If you set a date and the date is too soon, your enemy will wait you out. And if you set a date and it’s too far away, they’ll drive you out." As a military guy, that strategic ambiguity in not setting a date is a weapon. And to cede that to our opponent unnecessarily doesn’t make sense. You’re voluntarily giving away a part of your plan, and you’re not getting anything in return. So it can’t be calendar based. It has to be event based.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
We learn, for example what happens when we listen to the anti- American left and withdraw early, as we did from Vietnam....

If by ’Anti American Left’, you mean the people who saw early that The Gubment was flat out lying about the situation on the ground, and that the ’Master Plan’ of ’Containment’ wasn’t going to work, then I just have to disagree with your entire post.

When should we withdraw?


Will the Right be satisfied only after we have created little Korea’s all over the Middle East?

You remember Korea, right?

Perhaps you guys would prefer the Phillipine model, where we just prop up an onerous dictatorship until, inevitably, we create an even more virulent anti western, anti US terrorist threat.

You know about the Phillipines, right?

Those are the only options left,because as it stands right now we’ve created another Iran, only less stable and this one doesn’t actually have Nukuler weapons.

Congratulations, Success Is Failure!!!!
 
Written By: Mfawg
URL: http://

If by ’Anti American Left’, you mean the people who saw early that The Gubment was flat out lying about the situation on the ground, and that the ’Master Plan’ of ’Containment’ wasn’t going to work, then I just have to disagree with your entire post.
We had already won in Vietnam.
That’s documented fact, backed up by statments form then-members of the Northern forces, and if I’m not mistaken, posted on this very blog not so long ago... or possibly OTB.

Tell me again, who was lying.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
"So, Murtha puts forth the proposition that to withdraw on our terms on our timetable is preferable to the inevitable..."

Inevitable if we withdraw under his plan "get out now!!!!, redeploy now!!!".

And heaven forbid that it even begin to have a faint look of ’victory’ (yeah, heaven forbid the other party look like they helped achieve victory by standing by their guns...)

We don’t want it to look like a victory? Gee, so we want it to look like what, a loss? A draw? What DO we want it to look like?

And stop trying to cut the guy slack because he’s decorated. He had the presence of mind at a critical point in his life to do a valorus thing. But that doesn’t always make him right about military decisions.
As an example...what was it Kennedy said? “It was involuntary. They sunk my boat.”



 
Written By: Looker
URL: http://
When should we withdraw?

When - as has been said on this blog and by the administration for many, many months - the Iraqis are clearly capable of defending themselves, their government and their governmental process.

It’s called a "conditions based" withdrawal. What part of that don’t you understand?


 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
Book -
Yeah, I’ll be thrilled to see Harry Reid retire....
but I won’t exactly be sad to see Tom Delay find alternate employment either.
 
Written By: Looker
URL: http://
Fm SGT Duran:
I say, redeploy to the borders, let the Iraqis stand up for themselves, and when the likes of Zarquawi peep their little heads out, make THEM the target, instead of the slow drip we’re going through.
And just what boarders would they be? Saudi Arabia maybe? Well that wouldn’t work would it, after all we just left there and it IS one place Osama and his AI ilk insisted we leave.

Syria? Need I say more?
Turkey? Possible, but not likely considering they wouldn’t provide a land bridge into Iraq at the start of the war.
Iran? Not an option either.
That leaves Kuwait as the only border we could possibly "run" to.

What makes you think Zarquawi would stick his head out even if we were a few hundred miles away and across a border? Or maybe you believe he is ignorant of the fact that a Tomahawk/Hellfire missile can be fired at his head that "peeps" out?
The good SGT continues:
But right now, China is getting ready for war, and this little drip, drip, leave, is going to hurt us. That what it looks like to me.
War with who? Are you daft man?!!

Taiwan? Not as long as it has a mutual defense treaty with the US.
The US? The US being anything but a "financial war" target by China is laughable.

How about a Chinese war against itself? Ah yes maybe that’s your thinking and the only plusable one.

But even in internal war in China is unlikly as long as, to use your terminology, the Gov. "drip, drip[s]" a steady diet of capitalistic reforms.

As a 20 year retired "Squid" I honor your service but think your way off the mark SGT.




 
Written By: Marc
URL: http://fullthrottle.cranialcavity.net/
We had already won in Vietnam.

When, pray tell, did this ’Documented Fact’ happen?

1963,1964,1965,1966,1967,1968,1969,1970,1971,1972,1973,1974,or 1975?

We won ALL the battles in every one of those years.

We lost the war.

The failure wasn’t military, which just as they do now performed every task, won every battle, and did so in very difficult circumstances.

It was strategerical, and bi-partisan at that.

Which gets us back to the point.

Murtha got it right when he said ’I like guys that got 5 deferments that won’t listen to advice about a war’.

Nothing like a bunch of chickenhawks who ignored the advice of every professional soldier since 1991 and went too fast with too few to do it right shouting down the opposition with claims of ’partisanship’ and hiding behind the flag.

Quick: Who was the SecDef in 1975?

Sometimes, failure just follows a guy around his whole life.

Bring ’em home, they did the job we needed them to do, and more than anybody should have asked.

 
Written By: Mfawg
URL: http://
Since we were "officially" out in February 73 what does it matter?
And since Saigon fell in April of 75 and Rummy didn’t become SecDef until
November or 75....

But I’m sure you have a point you’re trying to make here....

But maybe you’ve only read about it....and didn’t have to actually SEE it all....
 
Written By: Looker
URL: http://
We "lost the war" because we didn’t have the will to win it.
We can do the same thing all over again in Iraq.....gee, what fun.

Maybe we can get an embassy taken hostage again too while we’re at it, it’ll
be just like the good old days. And maybe the Dems will hand us another
Jimmy Carter to guide us.
 
Written By: Looker
URL: http://
ince we were "officially" out in February 73 what does it matter?
And since Saigon fell in April of 75 and Rummy didn’t become SecDef until
November or 75....

But I’m sure you have a point you’re trying to make here....

But maybe you’ve only read about it....and didn’t have to actually SEE it all....


You said we ’won’, and I asked you ’When?’

Still no answer to the question, I see.

We ’Lost’ because we didn’t have a clear, obtainable objective. Even at that, every military action was a success.

I saw the one we ’won’, up close and personal.

We ’win’ when we have a concrete military objective to accomplish and that mission is accomplished.

’Remove The Iraqi Army From Kuwaiti Territory Or Destroy It’ is a concrete, measurable military objective.

What pray tell is the concrete, measurable military objective we are attempting to achieve in Iraq right now?


We’ve already achieved it, by my reckoning.

Now we have a political objective.

Political objectives are not achieved by force of arms.

Remember why we didn’t cross the border the first time, which drove everybody there just about insane?

Sure you do.

 
Written By: Mfawg
URL: http://
We won ALL the battles in every one of those years.

We lost the war.
Because we were goaded by the left into giving up.
Still no answer to the question, I see.
Mostly because I was engaged in something that you will never understand: the life. Specifically, I was burning a steak.

Anyway here’s the answer you seek. Though I doubt you’ll admidt the validity of it.


Many years after the Vietnam War, General Vo Nguyen Giap, the North Vietnamese military commander, wrote, “if it were not for the disunity created by…stateside protest, Hanoi would have ultimately surrendered.” Former North Vietnamese Colonel Bui Tin explained, “Through dissent and protest lost the ability to mobilize a will to win.” With the help of certain journalists who couldn’t tell the difference between victory and defeat on the battlefield, the communists prevailed. While antiwar activists were spitting in the face of our returning troops, the people of South Vietnam were being slaughtered by the thousands.

Militant Islamists understand recent American history, and they understand that the only way to defeat America is to turn her against herself. Although President Bush handily won reelection, the defeatists have decided to continue their apoplectic campaign. Formerly known as liberals or progressives, the defeatists apparently prefer the status quo of despotic power over the prospect of liberty.
And here’s the article in Q&0... (Dale... that search bar ain’t workin’...)

http://www.qando.net/details.aspx?Entry=3047
Question [to NVA COL Bui Tin]: How did Hanoi intend to defeat the Americans?

Answer: By fighting a long war which would break their will to help South Vietnam. Ho Chi Minh said,

"We don’t need to win military victories, we only need to hit them until they give up and get out."

Question: Was the American antiwar movement important to Hanoi’s victory?

Answer: It was essential to our strategy. Support of the war from our rear was completely secure while the American rear was vulnerable. Every day our leadership would listen to world news over the radio at 9 a.m. to follow the growth of the American antiwar movement. Visits to Hanoi by people like Jane Fonda, and former Attorney General Ramsey Clark and ministers gave us confidence that we should hold on in the face of battlefield reverses. We were elated when Jane Fonda, wearing a red Vietnamese dress, said at a press conference that she was ashamed of American actions in the war and that she would struggle along with us.
The bottom line is we won the battle field, but were defeated by anti American leftists.

Even at that stage of the game, the Democratic party been taken over by the apoplectic leftist....And America paid the price for the domination.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
Political objectives are not achieved by force of arms.
Yes... Slavery, communism, Nazism, American independence, Facism... Yeah, none of these ever got solved by force of arms.

Sure.
Right.
Got it.

Forgive me, but it’s time that I moved on. I mean, you’re fun, and all, Mfawg, but I think I’d like somehting a bit more challanging than the Bunny Slope.

 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
"We won ALL the battles in every one of those years."
Does "we" include the S. Vietnamese? If I recall correctly, some of the US victories were, at best, Pyrrhic.



"we were goaded by the left into giving up."
"were defeated by anti American leftists"

Was there a coup that I don’t remember? I always thought the Nixon administration, the winners of two elections and thus supposedly representative of the will of the majority of Americans, was pro-war. So how did a minority seize control of the US government and its foreign policy?

Why do I get the impression some people think that trying to win a war by defeating the enemy’s will to fight by non-military means, including influencing public opinion, is somehow unfair? I also get the impression it is/was unexpected. Somebody isn’t doing/didn’t do their homework. War is not some contest where two teams slug it out in some amphitheater according to a set of rules, separated from civil society, and once one of the armies loses enough points, it’s over. War includes the civilian population, and their morale and attitude also determines victory. If you can’t maintain your own population’s morale, don’t blame it on someone else; that is your responsibility.

 
Written By: timctual
URL: http://
So how did a minority seize control of the US government and its foreign policy?
Another example of how some feel that because one wears a mantle of "Republican" one is a conservative. Nixon was at best, a centerist. He was in fact more liberal than this. (A point which has always facisnated me, given all the crap most liberals toss on him) And let’s recall also, who controlled Congress, in both houses.
Why do I get the impression some people think that trying to win a war by defeating the enemy’s will to fight by non-military means, including influencing public opinion, is somehow unfair?
Hardly unfair. But those who fall for it, deserve all the derision they get. We as a nation fell for it once. We should not allow ourselves to be taken out by the same playbook, twice. And yet if such as Murtha and Moron Moran win the day, taken out we will be. Such people are traitors, in my view, and need to be treated as such.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
Have you guys considered for a moment that what Murtha said may have been excerpted out of context? Do we have a transcript for the speech somewhere other than National Review?

Or, perhaps, he simply meant that a slow withdrawal may make it appear as if "there’s a victory" when that’s not actually the case?
 
Written By: Jon Henke
URL: http://www.QandO.net
It’s a fair enough question, but yes, Jon, we do. I’ll assume you’ve been getting behind in your reading.... Several blogs, including Political Teen, have posted the C-span video of the sideshow meeting. There are several transcripts posted around, as well.

And as I have already said in this thread, to Sgt Drum.... I’m sure that’s what he was trying to imply... that we’d try to sell ths as a victory when there was none. It falls directly in line with his claim that there’s no way we’ll win there. Gives him some rather nifty cover, too... he can claim, after saying this, that any victory claimed in Iraq is a false one.



 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
Jon;

Here’s the C-span link
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
"Another example of how some feel that because one wears a mantle of "Republican" one is a conservative. Nixon was at best, a centerist. He was in fact more liberal than this."

Although this may be true, it is irrelevant. The subject was Vietnam and foreign policy, not domestic policy. Unless you are claiming that Nixon was a closet antiwar leftist?

)" And let’s recall also, who controlled Congress, in both houses."

So this means what, that antiamerican leftists constituted a majority? If so, that’s democracy, not treason.
 
Written By: timctual
URL: http://
Nationally we lost the will to win.

Being lied to didn’t help. But having Tet turned from what it was
(destruction of the South Vietnamese insurgency with the collusion of
the North Vietnamese government) into a VICTORY courtesy of the media
didn’t help either.
Getting daily body counts didn’t help.
Having to worry about Soviet or Chinese intervention definitely didn’t help
(though I’ve spoken with several real honest to Mao Chinese who were well
aware THEY had people in North Vietnam during that time frame).

Trying to compare Vietnam to Iraq certainly isn’t accurate, or productive,
except as a means of flogging the party in control.
But we’re getting the body counts...
We’re getting the ’unjust war’ crap...
We’re getting the ’withdrawal with honor’ soap sell...
We’re getting the ’Vietnam-like quagmire’ story

So, what about the war in Egypt, London, Spain, Bali....what are those?
Are Egypt, England, Spain, Bali, losing those wars? If we withdraw our
forces from those places will we achieve victory?
How about
Germany? What’s the plan for peace with honor in Germany anyway? Are the
troops ever going to come home? Will we be stuck in the quagmire in Germany
for another 60 years?!!!!
And finally, exactly when are we going to withdraw from Bosnia? What is our
plan for peace there!!!????
 
Written By: Looker
URL: http://
Although this may be true, it is irrelevant. The subject was Vietnam and foreign policy, not domestic policy. Unless you are claiming that Nixon was a closet antiwar leftist?
Your clear implication was that this since the republicans were in power they should’ve been able to carry the day. The fact of the matter is that conservtives neither had the power in Congress or the White House.
So this means what, that antiamerican leftists constituted a majority? If so, that’s democracy, not treason.
and, at what point, specifically, did I say anything about treason?
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
And as I have already said in this thread, to Sgt Drum.... I’m sure that’s what he was trying to imply... that we’d try to sell ths as a victory when there was none.
I have absolutely no doubt that you would. In the meantime, I see no real evidence that Murtha would be upset by a slow withdrawal leaving actual victory, as opposed to a misleading appearance of victory.
 
Written By: Jon Henke
URL: http://www.QandO.net
I think you miss the point - to make our mission in Iraq look like a victory when in fact it was a complete failure is a lie - lies are always horrible.

When a man serves his country 27 years, in no way does he delight in his countries failure.

I served my country for 14 years and I know how it feels.

I would wish it was a success

Al Quida stamped out

True democracy born

Iraq on the road to economic prosperity.

But none of that will happen, rather the opposite, no matter how we pull our troops out, no matter how long we stay the course, and the longer we stay the worse it gets. Pretending otherwise just to make it easier to love your country is a complete failure of reality and complete madness of truth.

If you truly love your country, you will face the truth and help your country change.
 
Written By: Roger Harkness
URL: http://okcitykid.bravejournal.com/
I see no real evidence that Murtha would be upset by a slow withdrawal leaving actual victory, as opposed to a misleading appearance of victory.
Then you under-estimate how seriously invested the Democrats in general, and Murtha in particular, are, to our losing. They know they will not survive politically, a victory they didn’t back... a victory that even Murtha now apparently sees as a sure bet.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
Then you under-estimate how seriously invested the Democrats in general, and Murtha in particular, are, to our losing.
Do I? Absent your word. I don’t see any actual evidence of that, either. Just differences in strategic calculations. You, on the other hand, I have no doubt at all, would construe anything as victory, so long as it would benefit your side politically.

I have no doubt that you put party above principle and that you see Democrats as a greater threat to the US than terrorism.
 
Written By: Jon Henke
URL: http://www.QandO.net
There’s no ’victory’ to be had unless we settle for a a non-dictatorship
that doesn’t actively propagate Islamic terrorism (or other kinds)and doesn’t abuse it’s citizens more than at the average acceptable level of the Western world (Germany, France, UK, US, Canada as examples).

Slow withdrawal? If that’s what he means, that’s not what he’s been saying,
whatever he really meant when he said ’victory’ more recently.
Slow withdrawal already appears to be the administration’s plan, which Murtha
must not agree with, or he wouldn’t keep harping on it.

 
Written By: Looker
URL: http://
I see no real evidence that Murtha would be upset by a slow withdrawal leaving actual victory, as opposed to a misleading appearance of victory.
Then, you totally underestimate the amount of investment that the Democrats in general, and Murtha in particular, have in our losing this war; at the moment they got themselves backed into a corner and are just now starting to figure this out; They know full well that they will not be able to politically survive a victory that they’re not a part of and not backing. A victory, which apparently even worth of for all of his complaining, sees as a sure thing.

You worried his statement was being taken outy of context. The C-Span video disproves that. Your argument that he’s being mis-read, would be a lot easier to accept if he and the remainder of the Democrats didn’t have a long history of leaning against our winning in Iraq.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
Or, perhaps, he simply meant that a slow withdrawal may make it appear as if "there’s a victory" when that’s not actually the case?

As opposed to what, Jon? Pulling everybody out immediately (his only given alternative, BTW) so that not only is there no victory, but nobody believes that we had one?

I’m sorry, but I miss the national benefit to that course of action. Unless, of course, you believe that we will not and cannot achieve a victory in Iraq. Maybe Murtha’s claimed that in some other forum.

 
Written By: Mark A. Flacy
URL: http://
Or, perhaps, he simply meant that a slow withdrawal may make it appear as if "there’s a victory" when that’s not actually the case?
Jon, it’s possible he meant that, but the only alternative he suggested was an immediate withdrawal. In that case, then, he is saying that we have already lost, so we might as well get out now, rather than get out slowly and pretend there’s a victory. I find that point of view repgunant.
 
Written By: Steverino
URL: http://steverino.journalspace.com
I have no doubt that you put party above principle and that you see Democrats as a greater threat to the US than terrorism.
No, to the former, and yes to the latter.
Would you trust someone who works against us in a wartime situation? I would not. That’s MY principle. Is it one you share, Jon? I ask because I don’t see any actual evidence of it.

 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
I have absolutely no doubt that you would. In the meantime, I see no real evidence that Murtha would be upset by a slow withdrawal leaving actual victory, as opposed to a misleading appearance of victory.

Well, except for his statement that the only viable option is withdrawal now.

"A number of senators who are running for president have called me," Murtha said. "And I told them there’s only two policies. That’s the policy of redeployment, which I’ve suggested, and the president’s policy — stay the course is not a policy.

When he says "the policy of redeployment" he’s talking about immediate withdrawal (which is his policy).

In that context it’s hard to agree with your interpretation.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
Would you trust someone who works against us in a wartime situation? I would not. That’s MY principle. Is it one you share, Jon? I ask because I don’t see any actual evidence of it.
Would I trust a politician? That might be a stupid question. I disagree with a great deal of what Murtha says and proposes. But I also disagree with many of the administration’s policies and think them counterproductive to the war effort. "I disagree with your policies" does not = "you are untrustworthy".
 
Written By: Jon Henke
URL: http://www.QandO.net
Well, except for his statement that the only viable option is withdrawal now.
Yes, and another of his statements was that he believes the war to now be "unwinnable". Meaning he believes "low withdrawal leaving actual victory" to be impossible and the results we have left are slow "pretend victory" withdrawal or quick withdrawal.

I don’t agree with him, but let’s not pretend he’s arguing that victory is possible and we should avoid it.
When he says "the policy of redeployment" he’s talking about immediate withdrawal (which is his policy).
Well, he’s always said "immediately redeploy U.S. troops consistent with the safety of U.S. forces." which has translated to `6 months or so, so it’s not quite a pick up and leave tomorrow thing. I think you’re remarked on that before, but I want to make sure we’re on the same page with that.

So, if you start with the assumption that the war is, at this point, "unwinnable", then our options really are to get out as quickly as possible or to drag out the inevitable and waste lives in pursuit of a phantom victory that we can’t achieve....while also giving up what nominal strategic advantages are to be had with a US withdrawal — and, to be fair to that side, there are a few potential benefits.

I know you disagree with his premise — I do, too. But evaluating his calculations from your premises is as ridiculous as evaluating your calculations from his premises. I see plenty of that done, too: "Why are you in favor of Americans dying to set up an Islamist state/Iranian ally/Iraqi civil war/etc". That assumes you share their premise. If you did, it would indeed be a reprehensible thing you favor. Since you don’t, that’s an intellectually dishonest way to evaluate your strategic calculation.
 
Written By: Jon Henke
URL: http://www.QandO.net
"I disagree with your policies" does not = "you are untrustworthy".
But, a la Murtha, worrying out loud that we might look like we’re winning, that = you are untrustworthy,

Yours, TDP, ml, msl, & pfpp
 
Written By: Tom Perkins
URL: http://
"So, if you start with the assumption that the war is, at this point, "unwinnable", then our options really are to get out as quickly as possible or to drag out the inevitable and waste lives in pursuit of a phantom victory that we can’t achieve....while also giving up what nominal strategic advantages are to be had with a US withdrawal — and, to be fair to that side, there are a few potential benefits."

Anyone able to so badly misinterpret the situation is also untrustworthy. At best his is the sort of idiocy that thinks Tet is a VC victory, withdraws, and then disclaims any contributory negligence towards the Khmer Rouge.

This is enough better it should make a difference?

Yours, TDP, ml, msl, & pfpp
 
Written By: Tom Perkins
URL: http://
Total agreement, Tom.
Would I trust a politician? That might be a stupid question.
Yea, it might be, but it’s not what I asked, is it? What I did ask you what was:
Would you trust someone who works against us in a wartime situation?


... and that question may or may not include politicians.
I don’t agree with him, but let’s not pretend he’s arguing that victory is possible and we should avoid it.
We’re not pretending.

While he and the remainder of the Democrats are arguing that victory is impossible,(Which of course is laughable...) what he’s really doing is opening a hole for the event that we do win... because we will. Given his quote, what he’s looking to do is cover his ass. Assuming we win in Iraq... and we will... Murtha will now be able to claim that it’s a false victory.... He will do that because once we are perceived as warning in Iraq, the Democrats lose... and he knows this.

It’s a really that simple.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com

 
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