Friday, March 03, 2006

Reaction to the Open Letter

Wow.

That word was used more than once in reaction to my open letter to President Bush, and it's about the best word I can use to sum up my view of those responses.

The Impolitic - my long-time friendly rival and blogmother - notes a bit of sadness, but also hope, at the news. I assure you: though it may have been difficult to write, it was also remarkably cathartic. Also, in comments here, Kathy of Stone Soup Musings expresses no joy at this development, given what it says about the state of the country. We may all lose in the short-term, but I am hopeful that we will win in the end.

The Midwestern Progressive exerpted the letter in his regular "Fine Lines" feature, which displays the craft of the written word in the blogosphere. I'm honored, Mid. Truly.

The Mayor of Simpleton, a new venue for blog friend Kevin McKague, says some very kind things about my return to the 'sphere and seems to have been fired up at my thoughts on the president's job performance. I have not known him to engage in habitual profanity, so a "DAMN" from him suggests that maybe he liked the post. [/understatement]

Lest my left-leaning friends have all the fun, Cardinal Martini expresses support and confesses that he has been thinking along similar lines for a while. And he's right: we do need more moderate Republicans. Once upon a time, I detested moderates like Lincoln Chafee. Now, I think I understand his position a little better. It's about time that the term RINO became a badge of honor.

If there are any of the above that you don't read regularly, you should. All are solid daily reads.

Lastly, and most importantly, thank you all for a warmer welcome back than I could have imagined. It's good to be here again.

MORE: Cardinal Martini posts an astute comment that may as well express my own thoughts on the matter. So, I'm promoting it in full to the main post:

There was a time when my lefty college friends would criticize Bush for the dumb things he does -- he falls off his bike, or misspeaks, or has a weird expression on his face -- and I would defend him.

There was a time when they would criticize him because he's religious, and against gay marriage, and against abortion, and I would tell them that I don't agree with him on those issues. I'd tell them I voted for Bush because he is strong on national security.

And now they criticize him about the aftermath of the war, about his saying he didn't know the levees would break, about the Ports deal. And I really can't defend him any longer. Even when he makes a good decision or holds a defensible position, he refuses to defend it, and he refuses to explain it.

When was the last time he told us his thoughts about what is going on in Iraq? Is there ethnic cleansing? Is there a civil war?

He told us no one anticipated the levees' failure in New Orleans. Well, a videotape seems to say otherwise. Response? None.

Was the Dubai Ports World transaction a good one? I thought so, and apparently the president thought so. But he and his administration have been totally inept at selling it, and now because he can't farking mount a verbal defense of it, the ports deal will probably be stopped.

Again and again and again, he won't explain himself, he won't talk about what is going on. I'm not naive; I never romanticized him. But I expected more from him than this.

3 Comments:

Anonymous Cardinal Martini said...

There was a time when my lefty college friends would criticize Bush for the dumb things he does -- he falls off his bike, or misspeaks, or has a weird expression on his face -- and I would defend him.

There was a time when they would criticize him because he's religious, and against gay marriage, and against abortion, and I would tell them that I don't agree with him on those issues. I'd tell them I voted for Bush because he is strong on national security.

And now they criticize him about the aftermath of the war, about his saying he didn't know the levees would break, about the Ports deal. And I really can't defend him any longer. Even when he makes a good decision or holds a defensible position, he refuses to defend it, and he refuses to explain it.

When was the last time he told us his thoughts about what is going on in Iraq? Is there ethnic cleansing? Is there a civil war?

He told us no one anticipated the levees' failure in New Orleans. Well, a videotape seems to say otherwise. Response? None.

Was the Dubai Ports World transaction a good one? I thought so, and apparently the president thought so. But he and his administration have been totally inept at selling it, and now because he can't farking mount a verbal defense of it, the ports deal will probably be stopped.

Again and again and again, he won't explain himself, he won't talk about what is going on. I'm not naive; I never romanticized him. But I expected more from him than this.

8:40 PM  
Anonymous Libby said...

I can't stop saying it. Wow. Now the Cardinal is moving in a new direction? Darn if I don't think we're moving to a place where we may have to reach over the center line, but we can join hands and work together.

In the end, it's not about right or left, conservative or liberal, Republican or Democrat. All those designations and Bush himself became convenient labels for our disagreements and we got lost in syntax.

I think once we stop squabbling with each other about the symptomology (and yes I know I'm the chief squabbler), together we can fix the root cause of what ails our system.

11:35 AM  
Blogger expatbrian said...

Your letter to the pres inspired my post tonite. Then I come here to comment and see that Libby beat me to some of my ideas! Oh well, no problem. Common ground, what a great concept.
Welcome back.

6:46 AM  

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