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November 04, 2006

Don't Blame Us!

Shakes here...

Oh, this is just priceless. The architects of the Iraq War are throwing Bush to the wolves to save their own tattered reputations, claiming the problem wasn’t their idea, but Bush’s total and complete lack of the merest appearance of competency—which, apparently, they never noticed. Sing it, neocons!

Richard Perle: “The decisions did not get made that should have been. They didn't get made in a timely fashion, and the differences were argued out endlessly.… At the end of the day, you have to hold the president responsible.… I think if I had been delphic, and had seen where we are today, and people had said, 'Should we go into Iraq?,' I think now I probably would have said, 'No’…”

Delphic, huh? Well, that’s the best euphemism for “vaguely cognizant of obvious facts” I’ve heard yet!

David Frum: “[I]t now looks as if defeat may be inescapable, because ‘the insurgency has proven it can kill anyone who cooperates, and the United States and its friends have failed to prove that it can protect them.’ This situation, he says, must ultimately be blamed on ‘failure at the center’—starting with President Bush.”

Bitch, that’s cold. After G-Dub turned your “axis of evil” speech into the Shit Heard Round the World, all you’ve got to give back is shade?! Dayum! 

Kenneth Adelman: “I just presumed that what I considered to be the most competent national-security team since Truman was indeed going to be competent. They turned out to be among the most incompetent teams in the post-war era. Not only did each of them, individually, have enormous flaws, but together they were deadly, dysfunctional.”


Michael Ledeen: “Ask yourself who the most powerful people in the White House are. They are women who are in love with the president: Laura [Bush], Condi, Harriet Miers, and Karen Hughes.”

I don’t even know what that means, but it doesn’t sound good.

Frank Gaffney: “[Bush] doesn't in fact seem to be a man of principle who's steadfastly pursuing what he thinks is the right course. He talks about it, but the policy doesn't track with the rhetoric, and that's what creates the incoherence that causes us problems around the world and at home. It also creates the sense that you can take him on with impunity.”


Michael Rubin: “Where I most blame George Bush is that through his rhetoric people trusted him, people believed him. Reformists came out of the woodwork and exposed themselves.”

Is he talking about the Iraq War, or Mark Foley?

Eliot Cohen: “I do think it's going to end up encouraging various strands of Islamism, both Shia and Sunni, and probably will bring de-stabilization of some regimes of a more traditional kind, which already have their problems.… The best news is that the United States remains a healthy, vibrant, vigorous society. So in a real pinch, we can still pull ourselves together. Unfortunately, it will probably take another big hit. And a very different quality of leadership. Maybe we'll get it.”

Fo shizzle.

Mind you, these were the same diseased todgers predicting that we’d be greeted as liberators and the reconstruction would pay for itself, and accusing anyone who said before the war that Bush was an incompetent doofus who would make a hash job of this adventure, of being traitorous, unpatriotic imbeciles who didn’t know what we were talking about. So, you know, I really appreciate what they've got to say now.

November 4, 2006 | Permalink


You have to remember the history of neo-conservatism.

These guys started out as Trotskyites in the 1930s, became Stalinists in the 40s, socialists in the 50s, liberals in the 60s, conservative Democrats in the 70s, Reaganauts in the 80s, then they became neo-Conmen.

Their gods changed, but they never stopped worshiping a god. That's the source of their unchanging absolute conviction that they are always right.

Nobody before Bush ever took them seriously. That poor schnook Bush did, and see what he got for it.

Posted by: gary | Nov 4, 2006 6:43:41 PM

What could be interesting and fun is to look around and try to guess who will be the crazed chickenhawks for the next idiotic genocidal war twenty years from today. I remember the LeMays and Alsops from the sixties.

"And one child born to carry on..."

Posted by: bob mcmanus | Nov 4, 2006 7:35:18 PM

The best is the David Frum quote that Kevin Drum excerpts. The post has one of Kevin's finest bits of snark:

Shorter David Frum: I used to think Bush was such an empty vessel that if I could just get him to parrot the words I wrote, they'd bounce around in his skull and become actual ideas for lack of any competition. Later, though, I finally realized why his skull was empty of serious ideas in the first place.

Posted by: Tom Hilton | Nov 4, 2006 8:20:42 PM

I think it should be pointed out that the use of the term "delphic" by Richard Perle is far better founded than it at first appears.

From Wikipedia, Delphi Method:

The Delphi method has been an anticipatory thinking (futures) technique aimed at building an agreement, or consensus about an opinion or view, without necessarily having people meet face to face, such as through surveys, questionnaires, e-mails etc. This group dynamics technique, if used effectively, can be highly efficient and generate new knowledge. The Delphi method, or Delphi Technique, is analogous to multiple rounds of secret-ballot voting on issues, but is more thorough than simply repeated run-off elections.

So what he is saying here is, if there had been any serious effort to determine the expert consensus, and he had then consulted the results, then he of course would never have supported the war. This, of course, absolves him of blame. He was, after all, unaware that it was a foolish and dangerous exercise in Imperial Overstretch, because he didn't bother to find out.

Posted by: BruceMcF | Nov 4, 2006 8:51:12 PM

What about Rove? Wasn't he a critical policy advisor? Didn't he need to give final approval to any plan that would influence the President's political numbers? In all of the blog coverage of neo-cons new attitude about Iraq, I haven't yet seen Rove's name. Perhaps a new set of knives are being sharpened and will come out for Rove on Wednesday.

Posted by: meander | Nov 4, 2006 10:55:21 PM

It's not the President's fault, it's the policy that's incompetent. The neocon policy - incompetent and impotent.

I'm with Lakoff et al all the way down the line on this one:

"...not so much a testament to his [Bush] incompetence or a failure of execution. Rather, they are the natural, even inevitable result of his conservative governing philosophy. It is conservatism itself, carried out according to plan, that is at fault."

Bush Is Not Incompetent

Posted by: san antone rose | Nov 5, 2006 1:29:38 AM

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