Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Isn't He That Guy that the Kid on the Simpson's is Named After?

A little history lesson from, of all places, USATODAY:

It was Barry Goldwater, the revered conservative, who convinced Nixon that he must resign or face certain conviction by the Senate %97 and perhaps jail. Goldwater delivered his message in person, at the White House, accompanied by Republican congressional leaders.

Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee likewise put principle above party to cast votes for articles of impeachment. On the eve of his mission, Goldwater told his wife that it might cost him his Senate seat on Election Day. Instead, the courage of Republicans willing to dissociate their party from Nixon helped Ronald Reagan win the presidency six years later, unencumbered by Watergate.

Another precedent is apt: In 1968, a few Democratic senators %97 J. William Fulbright, Eugene McCarthy, George McGovern and Robert F. Kennedy %97 challenged their party's torpor and insisted that President Lyndon Johnson be held accountable for his disastrous and disingenuous conduct of the Vietnam War, adding weight to public pressure, which, eventually, forced Johnson not to seek re-election.

Today, the United States is confronted by another ill-considered war, conceived in ideological zeal and pursued with contempt for truth, disregard of history and an arrogant assertion of American power that has stunned and alienated much of the world, including traditional allies. At a juncture in history when the United States needed a president to intelligently and forcefully lead a real international campaign against terrorism and its causes, Bush decided instead to unilaterally declare war on a totalitarian state that never represented a terrorist threat; to claim exemption from international law regarding the treatment of prisoners; to suspend constitutional guarantees even to non-combatants at home and abroad; and to ignore sound military advice from the only member of his Cabinet %97 Powell %97 with the most requisite experience. Instead of using America's moral authority to lead a great global cause, Bush squandered it.

I'd like to think that our elected officials might put politics aside and do the right thing. But I'm not holding my breath.

Link courtesy of Norbizness at Elated Hairy Pumpkin Farming and Doorknob Polishing Service.

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