Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Who's Afraid Of The Big Bad Rove?

Over the last five years, Republicans have frequently pushed the idea that Democrats are weak, while the GOP are the party of toughness and resolve. They tell us they are the party who won’t back down from America’s enemies because only they have courage and conviction!

Now look who is cowering in fear as the big bully of the political playground, Karl Rove, threatens to steal their lunch if they don’t support the President’s program of illegal domestic spying! What a bunch of spineless sniveling cowards are the current crop of Republicans. Digby brilliantly compares them to Eunuchs in Bush’s harem, while I’ve got my own take on the situation.

This scenario reminds me of watching kids on the real playground as I was growing up. There were always a few bullies who used the image of power – either from superior size, a reputation for toughness, or an aura of sheer insanity - to intimidate and manipulate other kids.

The Democrats seem like the kids who simply tried to stay away from the bully, proudly coming to school every day knowing that they would occasionally be singled out and harassed, or have their lunch taken from them every once in a while. But they remained independent and determined to steer clear whenever possible, carrying on a normal social life with their circle of friends despite the misfortune of having to share the playground with a bully.

On the other hand, this group of Republicans seem more like the other kids. The ones who tried to spare themselves from harassment by kissing up to the bully and doing whatever the bully asked of them, no matter how demeaning. They would follow the bully around the playground like puppies after their master, as they hoped upon hope that he would continue to allow them to be close to the power they vainly wished they had.

These kids would wait for the bully to choose a victim, or even egg him on with hollow praise, and then act tough as they joined in the harassment of someone they knew wasn’t a threat to them. They would hurl taunts from safely behind the bully’s back, and if the bully ever hinted that he might turn on them, these kids shriveled into the pathetic, boot-licking sycophants they were.

These are today’s Republicans in Congress as Rove browbeats them into staying in line with his threats of turning his wrath on them. Unless some of these Republicans refuse to bow to Rove’s authority, whenever I hear them play the “tough guy” role, I will only see the weak-minded kids in the playground pretending to be tough as they cower behind the bully.

Oh yeah - eventually someone always came along who was tougher than the bully and ALL the kids laughed as the bully got his ass kicked!


  1. That someone is bound to be Fitzgerald. Lets hope he arrives soon.

  2. The Arab world riots but you would rather ignore it and focus on the NSA wiretaps, a non-starter that reflects far worse on the Democrats. When half a world away radical Muslims torch embassies is it any wonder the American people are not leaping to their feet to defend a Saudi or a Yemeni's right to talk without the intelligence community listening? Additionally, by criticizing each and every measure the President has taken as excessive the Democrats have put themselves in a predicament whereby any future terrorist attack on American interests or American soil would leave them looking extremely foolish.

  3. The fact that I'm focusing on NSA wiretaps does not mean that I'm ignoring the rioting.

    You see - I'm capable of doing more than one thing at a time!

    And I'm not criticising the President's measures as "excessive" - I'm criticising them as "incompetent!"

    After fighting the "war on terra" for 5 years, any future terrorist attacks on American interests or American soil will make the President look foolish, not those of us who have merely called him on the fact that his apparent focus has been on tax cuts, war profiteering and solidifying Republican political power, rather than making anyone safer!

  4. You have devoted the last several pieces to wiretapping. What does that have to do with profiteering, tax cuts, or solidifying political power? It is certainly about his attempt to make the country safer, and while a valid case can and bas been made that we are surrendering too many civil liberties in the name of that safety there really is no spin that can be put on it attaching it to any of the aforementioned three Bush aims.

    Any Republican campaigning in the wake of a terrorist attack for office above dogcatcher would simply have to replay various sound bytes from virtually every major Democratic name (save the oft-villified Lieberman) complaining about the excesses of anti-terror measures (Hillary Clinton, whose own foreign policy has been refreshingly hawkish if generally political, claimed that the Republicans were trying to run on 'fear'). The Democrats simply do not provide a coherent alternative on defense and are consequently distrusted on that issue.

  5. By the time all the scandals surrounding the current crop of Republicans are known, there might not be any left who could run for office above dogcatcher!

  6. You completely dodge the arguments. Don't get me wrong, I am ashamed of the antics of some in my party and was glad that Boehner, while imperfect, won over Blunt, who was more of the same. But lets not pretend this is a purely Republican phenomenon. The majority of Abramoff's money and that of his clients went to the Republicans, but enough went to Democrats that righteous indignation is not going to carry the day.

  7. Giraffe7:28 PM

    Bully is right!

    Shock and Awe! Remember that. That was the battle cry! Shock and Awe! Bombing Bagdad with no postwar plan.
    Billions of Dollars missing in Iraq. Most of it delivered in cash.
    No accountability.

    Tax cuts for the rich. No money for healthcare or education.

    Anybody who defends all that is just plain stupid.

    Fitzgerald to the rescue and soon. This administration can't last. Nothing this decadent can last.

  8. It is worthless trying to debate anything with any of you. Your argument style consists of sloganeering and ancient talking points that have been so thoroughly debunked that even the NY Times won't run with them anymore. First, entitlements spending has risen faster under Bush than under Clinton (not that this is a good thing). Second, Bush's tax cuts have benefitted everyone. The only reason the wealthy seem to benefit more is because they PAY MORE TAXES (note: the ultra-wealthy, the George Soroses and Ted Turners of the world, do not shoulder their share because though they call for tax increases for us their money is nice and snug in the Caribbean). The theory behind tax cuts is that they put more money in the pockets of those who need it (thus lessening the need for handouts) and give money to those who would invest it in economic development. Thus Reagan's monumental tax cuts actually saw tax receipts rise (Bush's results have not been quite so cut and dry, but the country's economic rebound is only a couple years old). You also studiously ignore the 4.7% unemployment rate, the lowest in a long, long time. These may not all be white collar work but that's a point worthy of explanation rather than ignorance. If you can't win an argument without "if you don't think such and such you're an idiot" how are you going to win an election?

  9. Giraffe7:11 AM

    Just watch us. As for this blog keep on keeping on. I personally like that you stay with the domestic issues. We need to get our own house in order before we arrogantly tell others how to be.

  10. Your argument style consists of sloganeering

    Jeez, your party only dumped Frank Luntz a few days ago and you're now against sloganeering!

  11. Lost Wages Joe11:21 AM

    Yo AnonCon; I feel your pain. It's frustrating to try to debate serious issues when your opponents respond with sloganeering, name calling, straw man arguments and the like. Kinda like arguing with Rush Limbaugh or Bill O'Reilly or Karl Rove...
    But since you raised the issue of "thoroughly debunked" theories, I gotta tell you, your theory on the Bush tax cuts sounds an awful lot like "trickle-down economics", right down to the Reagan name-check. Talk about a discredited theory! Bush's daddy had to raise taxes to try and repair the damage Reagan's tax cuts did. Just like Bush-lite's unlucky successor is going to be forced to do.
    Bush's tax cuts appear to benefit the wealthy more because they DO benefit the wealthy more. The cuts put more money into the pockets of the people who need it least. And since I know you're not an idiot, I know that you know this. In fact, you're probably a lot smarter than I am, 'cus I can't figure-out what any of this has to do with Karl Rove bullying Republicans into supporting illegal domestic spying...

  12. Giraffe7:55 AM

    The Republicans like to change the subject so they can control the debate by creating new lies.

  13. It is difficult to describe trickle-down economics as dead when every President since Reagan has subscribed to them at least in part and America went from the Age of Limits to a generation of virtually uninterrupted economic growth. Bush 41's tax increases occurred in spite of a substantial increase in tax receipts because spending also increased considerably (defense but other budgets as well) under Reagan. Bush 43 has had considerable success in a number of economic areas, particularly the jobless rate and the growth rate, but he has also presided over a mushrooming debt and an ever-increasing trade deficit. Thus it isn't the tax receipts that are the problem but rather an unwillingness to match revenue to spending.