Pouty Politics Redux

As the hours dwindle on the month of March, 2007, let us pause to mourn the 80 American soldiers who sacrificed their lives in this 49th month of the Iraq War. As of this writing, a total of 3,246 American service members have perished in this unholy conflict, 917 in the last year alone. Clearly, this nation’s march into Iraq is not going out like a lamb. However, folks have had their fill of all the lyin’. And all the dyin’.

Despite broad public opinion to put an end to the madness of King George and bring the troops home as quickly as possible, the President and his minions are sticking to their guns (perhaps due, in part, to their fondness for the second amendment), maintaining that the war can be won despite considerable evidence to the contrary. In response to the passage of bills in the House and Senate that provide funding for U.S. forces in Iraq but also set a deadline for their withdrawal, Mr. Bush is up in arms, claiming that “each of the Democrats’ bills would substitute the judgment of politicians in Washington for that of our generals on the ground.” In addition to selectively ignoring the fact that some members of his own party voted for these bills, the President failed to mention that he and others in his administration—including, most notably, his former Defense Secretary, Donald Rumsfeld—have frequently substituted their judgment for that of the military commanders in Iraq. The only opinions that these arrogant ideologues truly value are those that jibe with their own. Dissent is disdained.

Accordingly, Mr. Bush is saying that he will “veto a bill that restricts our commanders on the ground in Iraq, a bill that doesn’t fund our troops, a bill that’s got too much spending on it.” The thing is, though, the bill does fund the troops. Both the House and the Senate voted to appropriate—however inappropriately—more than $100 billion more in military spending (a type of expenditure of which there can, apparently, never be “too much”). Thus, the President is getting the fiscal support he has requested. It just happens to be accompanied by some much needed limits, which he does not care for. Spoiled fellow that he is, George is unaccustomed to being told what to do or when he can and cannot receive his allowance. Therefore, somewhat petulantly, he is threatening to hold his breath until he turns blue veto any bill that does not give him exactly what he wants and arguing that it will be all the Democrats’ fault. It is little wonder that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi felt the need to patiently urge the President to “calm down with the threats.” Perhaps she and others in Congress ought consider having him stand in a corner of the country and think about what he has done.