Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Denial or Forced Perspective? 

Evaluating the success of the elections in Iraq have created a boom market in punditry on all sides of the political equation. I fall into the camp that can't see past Sunday's performance as anything other than a resounding success and another step foward for the Iraqi people in their desire for freedom, for the American people in their mission to secure a future free from terrorist threat and for the people of the world who, in many cases in spite of themselves, stand to reap the benefits of a more free and secure planet. At possibly the other extreme you can find the rationl minds at Democratic Underground bemoaning those poor Iraqis who were fooled by the "Chimperor" into voting. What then of a more moderate, dare I say centric response?

Mark Brown bravely asks "What if Bush was right about Iraq?" The Washington Post asks "Who Gets Credit in Iraq?" which logically seems to imply an acknowledgement that something for which one would want credit actually happened. But even while both of these seem to imply some degree of common perception with us Bush supporters, a read of the contents leaves me not so sure.

Mr. Brown's article contains many poisoned gems, such as (all emphasis added):I should long ago have shed any sense of surprise at the racist condensention of the left, but something this strident still flabbergasts me. Why, in God's name, wouldn't freedom mean something to Iraqis? Why should they have to proove to you or anyone else they don't want to live under a totalitarian regime? How does a phrase like that not only get formed in the mind but committed to paper by an accomplished writer like this?

The Washington Post's piece is even more fun filled. After being forced to recognize the significance of the elections and acknowledge that many view it as a vindication of Bush's policies, they unquestioningly jump to the other aisle with the following claim:
"The more common view is that the election vindicated the political vision of Ayatollah Ali Sistani" (emphasis added)
"More common" among whom? I'm not the final authority, but I've not seem this idea put forward anywhere else. For a "common view" it certainly is keeping covert. Oh, a reporter from the UK opined that "[t]he reason there was a poll [Sunday] was that the U.S., facing an increasingly intensive war against the five million Sunnis, dared not provoke revolt by the 15 to 16 million Shia." In that case it must be not only the most common but also the most accurate assesment. Never mind that Bush has not only stated from the beginning that our goal was to hold elections as soon as feasible and that he adamently opposed any delay once the schedule had been set.

Are we again seeing the ascendancy of the Democrats' well-developed defense by denial? One might easilly look to theabove examples as the political left yet again denying the obvious when it rebuts their position. I believe, however, we are seeing instead more evidence of the forced perspective they impose upon themselves. Let's review the base assumptions upon which the above commentary is built:Where have I heard this before? Oh, right, these are bin Ladin's talking points, almost item by item. Not to imply the left as a whole supports bin Ladin, but, rather, to offer that they find him more honest, accurate and reliable than the current Administration. Now, would a reasonable person see this as more indicative of a problem with the Administration or a problem with its critics' perception and perspective?

Mark Brown is still wondering "about a timetable for [Bush's] exit strategy," never grasping that the only acceptable "exit strategy" is tied not to a timetable but to an event: victory. The Post says that Bush's adversaries "believe that Iraqi voters have seized the elections as the best means of thwarting U.S. domination of the country." Despite Mark Brown's consiliatory lede, both articles still rely upon their old assumptions that are rooted in the other assumption that Bush is bad and he can do no good. Perhaps denial is at the root, but the real symptom evidenced is a complete unwillingness to even question the wisdom and validity of their own assumptions. If this is denial or monumental arrogence, it still has the same effect.

Among the pundits, though, I think the most accurate prediction was actually made by Jon Stewart, when he said
"What if Bush, the president, ours, has been right about this all along? I feel like my world view will not sustain itself and I may ... implode."
I don't think he'll be alone.

(hat tip: link meister Glenn Reynolds)

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?