December 08, 2003

Gore and Dean (and Wizbang!)

I disagree with Kevin of Wizbang's assessment of the Gore endorsement. I don't think Dean has to do a thing in terms of his campaign or persona as the result of this endorsement. Indeed, the endorsement is, in part, a stamp of approval of what Dean has been doing.

What this does is simply put another nail in the coffins of the Other Eight. The opportunities to gain traction for any of them are getting fewer and fewer. As things are stacking up now, Dean could go into Iowa with huge momentum, especially if, as rumored, Iowa Senator Tom Harkin endorses him. A win in Iowa, followed up by NH and maybe SC will be a trifecta that none of the Other Eight will be able to best.

Posted by Steven Taylor at December 8, 2003 08:12 PM | TrackBack
Comments

But don't you think he's going to go more centrist at some point? Maybe now is not the time, but it will be interesting to see if the process reshapes the candidate or the other way around.

Posted by: Kevin at December 8, 2003 08:25 PM

I must admit that one would think that he would have to move to the center to some degree for the general election--but I don't know if he will be able to much: his base is far too dedicated the Bush-anger bit.

I think that what he will try to do is look centrist by trying to say he is more fiscally conservative than Bush is. He will also bring up his stances on guns, and on limited use of the death penalty. On the big ticket stuff: taxes and defense, I don't see much movement.

Posted by: Steven at December 8, 2003 08:30 PM

How's this for a theory? This is Gore's attempt to replace Clinton as weilder of power and influence. Most of the other candidates have ties to Clinton, but not Dean. Think about it: Gore's man breaks through the cloud of Clintonites to seize the levers of power. And Dean has made no secret of his dislike of Terry McAuliff (Clinton's man at the DNC). New broom sweeps clean, and the Gore/Dean axis could put themselves in control for the next 4 years.

Posted by: Buckland at December 8, 2003 09:11 PM

My take is here:

http://www.punditmark.com/archives/000139.html

Basically, Lieberman gets stabbed in the back, and all he has been is Gore's loyal second. Gore did not need to endorse anyone. At least this early.

Posted by: mark at December 8, 2003 09:38 PM

Maybe--but right now I don't thik Gore has much to bring to the table.

Posted by: Steven at December 8, 2003 09:43 PM

Finally... Al Gore shows some leadership ability! If he had demonstrated such chutzpah 3 years ago we wouldn't be in this mess.

Steven Taylor -- are you THE Steven T. Taylor, of New Paltz fame? Please e-mail me if so.

~ g ~

Posted by: Gregory Kennell at December 9, 2003 12:44 AM

We're in a mess?

We have not suffered a noteworthy terrorist attack on U.S. soil since 2001. We eliminated the Taliban and smacked the hell out of Al Qaeda.

We've liberated millions of Iraqis and stopped the wholesale slaughter of innocents. We are proceeding to mop up the rest of the bad guys and form Iraq into a free democracy.

The economy is booming better today then it ever was under Clinton and is growing faster than any time since Ronald Reagan was in office. We expanded Bush 41's clean air act which was arguably the most effective piece of environmental legislation ever passed. As of this week, seniors now have a prescription drug benefit.

We're in a mess?

Huh? I must have missed it.

Posted by: Paul at December 9, 2003 01:51 AM

Gregory,

Sorry--Steven L. Taylor here.

Posted by: Steven at December 9, 2003 07:22 AM

Paul, Huh?

We have not suffered a noteworthy terrorist attack on U.S. soil since 2001.

True. We have also given terrorists an easy target in Iraq. Even terrorists are lazy. They're going to go where its easiest to do what they consider their work. Sadly, all it will take is one terrorist attack on the US now to disprove that theory. We thought we were secure before 9/11 also. Let's face it. No one really knows if we are safer or not at best.

We eliminated the Taliban and smacked the hell out of Al Qaeda.

Correction. We eliminated the Taliban from power. A good thing. And an appropriate response to 9/11. But there are enough Taliban left to warrant Operation Avalanche.

Also, unless I missed something, those bombings in Saudi Arabia & Bali weren't the work of anything but Bin Ladin's boys.


We've liberated millions of Iraqis and stopped the wholesale slaughter of innocents. We are proceeding to mop up the rest of the bad guys and form Iraq into a free democracy.

If we've done so well, why do they continue to resist? And no, they're not fighting for Saddam. Also, where was the post-Iraq plan to bring relative stability quickly? It would have helped tremendously but it wasn't there. That can be laid at the admin's feet.


The economy is booming better today then it ever was under Clinton and is growing faster than any time since Ronald Reagan was in office.

Huh? A mere month ago, we were under the weight of a tremendous recession. Most thoughtful economists would wait 6 - a year before pronouncing even simple judgement on our economy like that.

We expanded Bush 41's clean air act which was arguably the most effective piece of environmental legislation ever passed.

This Bush administration has actually weakened the rules of the air quality for factories early in this administration. He's reversed himself on factory requirements. here's a couple cnn links.

emmissions
environ policies


As of this week, seniors now have a prescription drug benefit.

Great! but at what cost? Ask any fiscal conservative and you'll find them pulling out their hair because of the spending and tax cuts by this congress & admin.

There are good things being done by both the repubs & demos. But throwing rhetoric out that is blatantly untrue and simplistic doesn't help us go anywhere.

Posted by: Eric at December 9, 2003 11:35 AM

Eric,

To be fair, it is hard to make the argument that the resistance in Iraq isn't primarily, if not exclusively, fuled by former regime (i.e, pro-Saddam) forces. I don't see evidence that there is a grassroots anti-US guerrilla war going on apart from those types.

S

Posted by: Steven at December 9, 2003 11:39 AM

Having heard a report of an interview with a terrorist on NPR last night, I drew a conclusion from his direct quotes that he wasn't working for Saddam. These cells are too independent. Where they're getting their funding is suspicious because of other reports of non-Iraqi's coming across the border. Outside influence like in Afghanistan? Maybe.

I shouldn't dismiss entirely the pro-Saddam idea because there is a real element of that too. I agree, but funding is coming from other sources as well. It isn't exclusively in house. Borders are too hard to police there.

Also, these people want to rule themselves. I don't think that makes the common man there an anti-American terrorist, but it doesn't endear him to us either. That provides a far less-than-optimal basis on which to stake our support.

Posted by: Eric at December 9, 2003 12:08 PM

I think that there are foreign terrorist at work as well. What I do not accept at this point is that there is a generalized anti-US Iraqi resistance not linked to the previous regime.

Posted by: Steven at December 9, 2003 12:09 PM

[sorry in advance for the length.. I like to think it was worth it.]

Eric you are using the the same bizzare argument that many in the left are. I should look it up because I know it has a proper name but I have dubbed it the "Perfect World" syndrome.

Because we do not live in a perfect world, we are in a mess.

You ignore, discount or even distort every shred of good news and make the case that since there is more work to be done, the people doing the work today have failed.

In Presidential politics the challenger has two options. They can make the case that everything is horrible and they can fix it or they can make the case that things are ok but they could be better.

It is rare that challengers win with "We are doing OK but it could be better." Kennedy comes to mind as the last guy to pull it off. Clinton convinced the world that we were in "The worst economy in the last 50 years." It was patently untrue as we all know but it brought anxieties up high enough that people voted for him. It is doubtful will work again.

Take a single example: For the last 6 months the economy has grown faster than at any time Clinton was in office EVEN THOUGH he had the dotcom boom tailwind.

That is good news. End of discussion.

The reason the Dems will lose is '04 is because they refuse to admit reality. The economy is good. To deny that only annoys voters. (assuming you don't fool them like Clinton)

The war on terror, despite the tiring overuse of the word quagmire, is going quite well. Is it over? Hell no. Bush predicted back on 9/12(ish) that it would take 5-8 years and many said that was a conservative guess. The voters are smart enough to realize we have more work to do.

And yes... There are some people in Iraq that are resisting us. But you conveniently ignore the protests in the street against those resisters. You ignore Iraqis naming their children "George Bush." You ignore millions liberated because of a few resisters. You ignore all the good and focus on the resisters.

This does not make the dems look wiser or intelligent. It makes you look like whiners.

Basically the Dem party is left hoping for failure in Iraq and hoping the economy craters. Your refusal to accept the many good things makes it obvious you are far more interested in the bad.

At some point it becomes obvious the Dems are praying that Bush fails. The problem is if he fails, the country fails. When you hope Bush fails you hope the country fails.

The Dems today are taking a breathtaking gamble. If you run on the fact that we are "in a mess," the country sure as heck better be there or you can't win the election. Here is why the gamble will fail. Things are not a mess. But the closer the election comes the louder the left will shriek that it is a mess.

Voters do not like politicians that are cheering against their country. IF things go to hell in a hand basket, then Dean has a shot. BUT (and its a big but) if the left continues to shriek that the sky is falling when it is not, the voters will see that the left is cheering for the wrong side and if that happens not only will Dean lose but so will every Dem for the next dozen years.

Posted by: Paul at December 9, 2003 12:22 PM

Paul,

You missed my last line:

Eric:There are good things being done by both the repubs & demos. But throwing rhetoric out that is blatantly untrue and simplistic doesn't help us go anywhere.

The point is that you're using rhetoric and incorrect claims to establish the opposite of being in a mess which is not the case either. It's in the middle.

Paul:Eric you are using the the same bizzare argument that many in the left are. I should look it up because I know it has a proper name but I have dubbed it the "Perfect World" syndrome.

Because we do not live in a perfect world, we are in a mess.

You ignore, discount or even distort every shred of good news and make the case that since there is more work to be done, the people doing the work today have failed.

All I did was take your original statements and say that they are not correct as you stated them. There is a huge difference from this.

I take exception to the way you have cast your statements in this thread. That is what made your statements incorrect. That is what I am trying to point out.

Examples:

You ignore, discount or even distort every shred of good news

This is not true. We all like good news. But an intelligent person doesn't get overhyped by a single piece of good news. They take it in perspective with other pieces of news they receive. For me to jump up and down and cheer that the economy has recovered is not logical because I don't know how long it will last. 1 month, 5 years. No one knows. I will, however, jump up and down and cheer because the economy is improving.

We eliminated the Taliban and smacked the hell out of Al Qaeda.

Yes we removed the taliban from power in afghanistan. But that is not what you said. Your statement was incorrect because we have not eliminated the requirement to fight the Taliban. I pointed that out. There may be a Taliban problem for years. Its scope is reduced greatly, but its not over.

You ignore millions liberated because of a few resisters. You ignore all the good and focus on the resisters.

In a follow-up post I clarified that there is a mood in Iraq which say "thanks for freeing us now get out" which is the mood in the country. That is not anything like the cheering crowds of France in WWII. That mood is helping to fuel resistance. Not like gas on a fire, but like not stamping out the smoldering embers of a fire when you could.

For the last 6 months the economy has grown faster than at any time Clinton was in office EVEN THOUGH he had the dotcom boom tailwind.

Over-generalizations about the economy are always wrong. This statement also doesn't account for the fact that the economy had performed badly for 2 years prior to that.

Your refusal to accept the many good things makes it obvious you are far more interested in the bad.

The general welfare of the world is in everyone's interest. Before the war started, many of us raised the issue of how long we would have to be in Iraq afterwards. Bush only said that after the war was over. Many of us feel that it was a price that was too steep to pay before the war started. Pointing out why we felt it was a bad idea then by using examples from today is important for us to learn.

There are more examples, but I don't have time to recount them all. Whenever you make grandious sweeping generalizations like what you've done today, you don't help anyone. And please don't include me in your list of whiny Dems. For pete's sake I'm a registered Republican.

Posted by: Eric at December 9, 2003 02:12 PM

Ahem- I think "We're in a mess" is a sweeping generalization. Yet (like good news) you don't notice that.

I am not making sweeping generalizations, I am pointing out the larger picture that you fail to see. Obviously you still do not.

Paul

Posted by: Paul at December 9, 2003 06:21 PM

"we're in a mess" was indeed a sweeping generalization. And like most of what I've read here today was inaccurate.


Posted by: Eric at December 9, 2003 06:54 PM
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