Thursday, October 18, 2018

Never give a Republican an even break?

By A.J. Liebling
Meta-content Generator

There's no doubt that journalists and other scriveners are feeling more beset than ever.  No, we're not talking about a Washington Post columnist and U.S. legal permanent resident dismembered alive by a Saudi hit squad, whose death is being systematically covered up by the corrupt bigot in the White House bought and paid for by the Saudis, among others.

No, we're talking about something really important: the hurt feelings of white male gasbags who are not getting the respect they deserve merely because they have been wrong about everything over the last 40 years.  Today's poster child: former Iraq Warmonger and Bush apologist Max Boot.

These days Boot, like his fellow turncoats Billy Kristol, Davey Frum, Nicolle “Stop the Recount” Wallace and so many others, is enjoying his readmission to the human race because he, like any sentient being but unlike 99% of Republicans, is appalled by the antics of President Tiny Toadstool.

Looks like Max Boot won't need his slogan back
This idyll of hard-won respectability is marred only by a pertinacious few who point out that, prior to 2017, Boot was a hard-core shill for the George W. Bush program of lying us into war, committing torture, and cutting huge chunks out of the Constitution in order to arrest and detain in America U.S. citizens on suspicions, but not legally adequate charges, of terrorism.

Now that Boot has seen the light and the possible moolah he could rake in from selling his new book to people who think, i.e. not Republicans, he's done some good work confessing past sins.  According to Mother Jones, he's come closer to apologizing than the rest of the Iraq War Hot Air Force and other Bush coatholders:

[David Corn, Mother Jones:]You were a golden boy of conservative punditry. You joined the Wall Street Journal editorial page in 1994 at 24. You were the op-ed editor four years later. You became a contributing editor to the Weekly Standard and a blogger for Commentary. You were in neocon heaven—a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, an adviser to John McCain in 2008 and Mitt Romney in 2012. You were one of the major voices in favor of the Iraq War. And in your forthcoming book, you write with great introspection and humility, “I can finally acknowledge the obvious: It was all a big mistake. Saddam Hussein was heinous, but Iraq was better off under his tyrannical rule than the chaos that followed. I regret advocating the invasion and feel guilty about all the lives lost.” I mean, Max, this is almost, maybe it is, an apology. What brought you to that point?
Max Boot: Well, it’s basically that I could not deny reality indefinitely.  
Good thinking, Max.  Do go on:
I was in my conservative bunker, and I thought this was a gross libel against the Republican Party to claim that we were catering to racism, or that it was a libel on America to claim that America was a pervasively racist society. And then Trump came along and I realized, “Wait a second. There is a much larger constituency for racism and xenophobia than I had realized.” And it made me think, “Oh, my goodness. This is why a lot of people were voting Republican.” It wasn’t because they loved supply-side economics. It wasn’t because they supported NATO. It was because they were looking for a candidate who would champion the interests of white people. And Donald Trump did that more unabashedly and more unapologetically than previous Republican candidates had done. That was a wake-up call. And then of course I saw other examples of racism coming to the fore in ways that were undeniable, like all these videotapes of police officers killing and abusing African Americans. The evidence is right there, on the tape. You can’t deny it. 
No you can't, as indeed people of color and Democrats have been saying for at least 60 years to the derision of folks like you.   For some reason, those folks who were fighting for the truth and justice all that time aren't always as impressed as they should be by Max's newfound wisdom, according to Max:
Well, a general danger of punditry is that there’s very little incentive to change your position or admit error. If you reverse your position, the people who backed you before will be unhappy, but a lot of the people who now agree with you will still pillory you. I’ve gotten that on Twitter; I’m called a war criminal and told that I’m being opportunistic in renouncing the Iraq War. And so these people on the left are basically saying, “Too late. You can’t renounce your beliefs.” There’s very little incentive, from a political economy standpoint, for people to reverse field. And a lot of disincentives.
That must be why Billy and Davey and Steve and all the others haven't even bothered with any sort of recognition of, much less atonement for, their past idiocies: the pain of not being loved.  It's not as bad as having your legs sawed off or being publicly mocked and humiliated by the most powerful Republicans in the world for sharing your terrifying story of sexual assault at the hands of a Supreme Court Justice, but it's still pretty bad.

Perhaps it's not just sheer perversity that animates those who have correctly seen that the obvious truth that the Republican Party was and is nothing more than a collection of white racists, plutocrats and warmongers.  Perhaps it's the fear that, unlike those few who have made some effort to recognize their past misdeeds, the much greater number of Republicans who have not (what are your Contra buddies up to these days, Ana?) are peddling a new dog's breakfast of whoppers.

As far as we can tell, Max is alone among the Republican Never U Bummers in seeing the line that connects 60 years of racist Republican politics to its current master practitioner, President Tiny Toadstool.  The remainder don't, or won't.

That make us fear that what the Billys and Daveys and Steves and Joeys are angling for is a place at the political trough once we are rid of the Tangerine-Faced Grifter, assuming we live that long.  We fear that they will return to claim what they see as their rightful place in national politics based on the falsehood that Trumpanismo was an aberration from, rather than the culmination of, Republican policies.

They'll be back, trying out new lies to embroil us in new wars, like David “Axis of Evil” Frum, protect plutocracy and screw the poor, like Joe “I Ended Welfare!” Scarborough, avoid tackling climate change in the name of “deregulation,” and deny women access to safe abortions, like Nicolle Wallace, who once accused John Kerry of being insufficiently devoted to “fetal life.”

This is not an idle concern.  Here's one Republican who now fancies himself a moral authority but contributed greatly to the current catastrophe by telling us two years ago that he couldn't bring himself to vote for the one person who would save us from the U Bum Presidency:

The usual both sides bullsh**t.

Where exactly are far-left radicals ascendant?  In the Democratic Party of Joe Biden and Chuck Schumer?  Bollocks.

We can't let Republicans insinuate their shabby discredited policies back into the mainstream under the guise of some non-existent “third way.”  If they want a center-right party, we already have one: the Democrats.

As for Max Boot, we hope he sells a lot of books.  But before we sign our future over to him and his old buddies, you might want to take today's quiz: who liked Evan McMullin's preposterous Tweet?

Hint:  His name rhymes with “Lacks Toot.”  If you guessed right, you win a Coalition Provisional Authority T-shirt.  We've got a million of 'em!  When claiming your prize, please specify whether you want the one with the map of Iraq or Iran.

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