Monday, September 5

Yeah, Hugh, There's Always That One Guy in the Back of the Class Throwin' Spitballs. And That Guy is Me.

I was planning on a two sentence response to Hugh Hewitt, even though he'd like a truce, of sorts:
I do not doubt that the full-throated attack on president will continue over the long weekend. But perhaps it will grow just a bit less hate-filled, and the recovery effort a bit more energetic, if the center-right just refuses to return fire on a Labor Day weekend which occurs just as a very long labor comes into focus.

It's a brave stance all right, calling for a unilateral cease-fire when your side is out of ammunition, but Hugh manages some dry firing just to keep spirits up:
I will simply note that I am confident that many of these critics will find themselves in a position very similar to that of many of the speakers and most of the crowd at the memorial service for Senator Paul Wellstone in the fall of 2002. The speakers and the crowd that night were full of passion and conviction. They were sure they were right, and the echoes of applause and cheering came back at them and they were convinced they had made huge persuasive points with America. I am sure Jack Cafferty and many other of what Michelle Malkin called the "arm chair first responders" on the program today are quite certain of their own virtue, the president's terrible culpability, the impeachment that will surely follow, and the political realignment this will all lead to.

They are sure of it.

I am sure they are having their memorial service moment, and that the country is indeed watching everything very, very closely, and drawing very different lessons about who they would want managing the relief effort if disaster comes to their city or region.

Time will of course tell.

But the one thing that is truly low is the diminshment of the heroics that have been underway since early Monday morning and which continue at this hour, whether in the Coast Guard helicopters, the patrols of National Guardsmen in the city who have been there on duty for for hours and hours already, for the engineers scrambling to find a fix, for the bus drivers and the Dome workers, the medical personnel and the thousands of unnamed, unselfish, and now slighted federal, state, and local workers who are giving their all.

It's a pretty little speech, Hugh, what with that Harvard Law command of praeteritio an' all. I'm sure it bucked up more than one of the boys in the trenches. "Yes, I know that things look bleak, but just as we once made political hay out of seaweed and that PC closed captioning stuff with Wellstone, we can do it again by claiming Jack Cafferty called for impeachment and the Liberals are disparaging our men in uniform." I gotta admit, I do admire the spirit of the thing.

All of which almost made me forget the spitball I had all loaded up for him in the first place.
I am confident that the private side of the effort will flower in the days, weeks and months ahead. About the government's response I am not so sure. Appropriating money is easy; spending it wisely and to good effect is not.

Yup. The worse we make government, the more we starve its legitimate functions, pick the pockets of the less fortunate, and hand over its vital positions to political hacks, the more people will come to realize that government can't be trusted with those functions in the first place.

Time will of course tell.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hugh, you jackass. The only person who's smugly assured here is you.
I freaking *wish* I was certain that this entire mess would spell the end of the current criminally incompetent brand of politics, but you know what?
After the way you and your fellow apologists have managed to excuse everything else this president has done, including torture and "extraordinary rendition" and wars of choice, I sincerely doubt that the current anger towards Bush is going to last.
Those of us who've been paying attention all along are even more outraged, and maybe we've won a few converts.
But long after the last of the unidentifiable dead has been buried, after the city has been drained, after the news has moved on and the insurance checks been cashed, your president will still be smirking in the Oval Office, and people like you will have convinced most of America that it's the fault of the mayor and the governor.

I always found the arguments against "ambulance-chasing" unconvincing. Certainly it's crass for the grieving family to have to deal with a lawyer when their grandmother has died in a plane crash.
But we rarely engage the legislatures to prevent crassness. It seems far more likely that the laws are there so that the airline's lawyers and insurance company can get a head start on talking the family into settling.

That's exactly what I think of when I hear the Bush people say "There will be time for blame later":
"After we've finished making *our* case to the people."