- The Washington Times - Friday, October 4, 2002

The word is vile

"[Rep.] Jim McDermott accused president Bush of willfully lying to the American people about national security threats from Saddam or al Qaeda. He said this not on the floor of the House or in his district but in Baghdad, the capital city of a despot who is on the brink of war with the United States. At a time when the U.S. government is attempting some high-level diplomatic maneuvers in the U.N., when Saddam is desperate for any propaganda ploy he can muster, these useful idiots play his game. I think what we're seeing now is the hard-core base of the Democratic Party showing its true colors, and those colors, having flirted with irrelevance and then insouciance are now perilously close to treason.

"Mr. McDermott said, 'I believe that sometimes they give out misinformation.' Then he added: 'It would not surprise me if they came up with some information that is not provable, and they've shifted. First they said it was al Qaeda, then they said it was weapons of mass destruction. Now they're going back and saying it's al Qaeda again.' Mr. McDermott said, 'I think the president would mislead the American people.'

"So at a crucial juncture in American diplomacy, this Democrat is saying that Bush is a liar and a cheat and in Baghdad! The only word for this is vile."

Andrew Sullivan, writing on "Whose Side Are They On?" Monday in www.andrewsullivan.com


Anti-eggheadism

"By the 1930s, American intellectuals, with very few exceptions, were on the left of the American political and ideological spectrum. There were few Republicans among them; most intellectuals were Democrats or Socialists or even Communists.

"Liberals and Marxists dominated American intellectual commerce, indeed monopolized it until about 1950.

"Joseph McCarthy, the populist crusader against eggheads, chose to attack liberal and former Marxist exemplars of the latter as 'pseudo-intellectuals,' meaning that those were not real intellectuals worthy of respect, not properly equipped with brains.

"On one occasion Ronald Reagan, too, referred to 'high-IQ dimwits.'

"There have been many important elements of this devolution during the last 50 years. One of the most significant: the way that, after about 1955, the until then prevailing liberal monopoly of American intellectuality gradually (and, at times, swiftly) ceased to exist. By the 1980s more Americans designated themselves as conservatives than as liberals."

John Lukacs, writing on "The Obsolescence of the American Intellectual," in the Oct. 4 issue of the Chronicle Review


The simple truth

"[A] Republican congressman, Tom Tancredo, has been criticized and shunned, first by local leaders and later by the Bush administration, precisely because he pointed out that the authorities were ignoring a law that they were duty bound to enforce.

"The row was sparked off by a heartwarming/heartrending story in the Denver Post of a brilliant young scholar, 18-year-old Jesus Apodaca, who, despite high grades, might not be able to take up his place at the University of Colorado because he is an illegal alien and therefore ineligible for most of the usual scholarship funds.

"Tancredo asked why the INS had not enforced the law against illegal immigration on the young student and his family since the local paper had obligingly published their names and whereabouts on the front page.

"The INS hummed and hawed eloquently to the effect that, er, it didn't have enough resources to track people down even when told where they lived. The White House and the Republican National Committee sharply distanced themselves from Tancredo, stating that he spoke only for himself and his constituents whereas it was the president who decided the GOP's policy on illegal immigration (He's for it.)."

John O'Sullivan, writing on "It's Illegal!" Wednesday in National Review Online at www.nationalreview.com

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