Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Fahrenheit 9/11

Holy cow.

Rocky Horror Picture Show for liberals.

3:45 pm on a weekday. The theater was nearly full. A convention of tree-huggers and hand-wringers all in a self-congratulatory fervor. Shrieking, applause, pleasurable grunting from all quarters.

I bet they start wearing costumes with leather bustiers and fishnets, and throwing toast, within the week. "Meatloaf again?"

I tried really hard, but I couldn't figure out what specific point Moore was trying to make.

There are some I can reject. (I am using logic and evidence, though, so these rejections may be unfair to Moore, who rejects use of either of these).

1. Bush should have been more aggressive in pursuing domestic terrorists. But since (a) Bush was much more aggressive than Clinton-Gore, Moore's icons of goodness, and (b) Bush is criticized for being a fascist liberty-stealer when he does go after people in the US, that can't be right.

2. Bush should have used a lot more troops in Afghanistan, and at the same time he should have used fewer troops (zero) in Afganistan. Ditto for Iraq. So, both wars were unjust, and should have used many more troops and been fought much more aggressively. Bush intentionally let Osama bin Ladin escape in Afghanistan. Finding Osama bin Ladin would be a big electoral benefit to Bush. (No, this doesn't make sense. I'm just reporting).

3. The U.S. Supreme Court should have been nonpartisan, because it is majority conservative. The Florida Supreme Court was quite correct to be partisan, because it was majority liberal. The political process in the state of Florida should have been left alone to decide how its Electoral College votes would be cast, so long as both the elected Governor and the elected Legislature were prevented from having any say whatsoever. The unelected Florida Supreme Court should be the one that decides, because the Court is more democratic (i.e., more Democrats). The fact that the elected U.S. House of Representatives is majority Republican, and would have chosen Bush as President anyway, in a Constitutional process that would have played out if the Supreme Court had not acted, is of no consequence. The point seems to be that voters rule so long as they agree with Moore, and otherwise selected (but not all) unelected groups of Judges are the wisest. This selection also depends on whether the judges happen to agree with Moore. To have such wisdom...oh, if I could but be as wise as the fat man with the Arafat beard, and sensibilities.

4. The US Senate, being popularly elected, is most excellent. The US Senate, being Republican-controlled, is most evil. Democratic Senators are most excellent. Since all Democratic Senators refused to sign the petition of the House Democrats to have the results of the election appealed, all Democratic Senators are evil. Since no conceivable purpose could have been served by pursuing such an appeal, and since Al Gore himself was the presiding officer who (rightly) gavelled down the protests as out of order, Al Gore is evil, and not qualified to serve as President. Al Gore should be President.

All this said...F9/11 obviously is a very effective piece of fiction, however. Combine it with Clinton's work of fiction, MY LIFE, and it is quite a month for the left.

UPDATE: Look at the rather careful dissection of F9/11 by my colleague Brendan Nyhan.

7 comments:

Anthony Vitarelli said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anthony Vitarelli said...

To claim that the pre-9/11 Bush administration was more aggressive than Clinton-Gore on domestic terrorism is fairly short-sighted. Clinton signed two Presidential Policy Directives outlining a federal counterterrorism strategy and appointed a cabinet-level counterterrorism coordinator, who Bush promptly demoted once assuming office.

Perhaps more significantly, Clinton continually highlighted terrorism as a national security priority in his public addresses – notably in a 1998 commencement speech to the US Naval Academy. Increased prioritization like Clinton’s may have contributed to the customs officer stopping the bomber on his way to LAX airport on the eve of the Millennium. Before 9/11, all major Bush public speeches concerning Defense and Intelligence initiatives focused upon National Missile Defense.

During the 2000 transition, Clinton National Security staff briefed Bush staffers and informed them that they would spend more time on counterterrorism than any other issue, primarily against terrorism coordinated by Osama Bin Laden. Unfortunately, Bush officials like Paul Wolfowitz could not see beyond their immutable Cold War frameworks and insisted that Bin Laden could not have acted without a state sponsor. While these theories had largely been discredited after the 1993 WTC bombing, the administration endlessly sought links between Iraq and Al Qaeda.

There was not a cabinet level meeting on counterterrorism until September 4, 2001. President Bush was never briefed by the national counterterrorism coordinator until after both towers had been hit. Clinton received numerous briefings on counterterrorism and his FBI chief cited it as his highest priority. In contrast, on May 10, 2001, the Ashcroft DOJ issued guidance for its 2003 budget. The “incidence of gun violence and reducing the trafficking of illegal drugs” were listed as “priority objectives,” but it did not make a single mention of counterterrorism.

The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the United States has recently concluded that Congress and the American people were not prepared for major counterterrorism efforts that would affect their lives without a mass causality event, like 9/11. Neither Clinton nor Bush did enough to prepare the United States for a major domestic terrorist attack. However, at least Clinton made an effort.

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ardyan said...

I feel so betrayed.

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