Recent calls for greater civility among legislators ring hollow in my ears. The politicians call for more "bipartisanship" and less hostility, but it appears to me that these public rows aren't themselves the problem: they're just the visible symptoms of the underlying animosity that's building in our country -- perhaps more strongly among our representatives than among ourselves, I can only hope.
Vice President Cheney's recent suggestion that Senatory Leahy "fuck off" wasn't made because the VP forgot how to be civil, but because Senator Leahy has spent the last few weeks accusing the VP of serious felonies and then expected that the two would still be on friendly terms.
Cheney said yesterday he was in no mood to exchange pleasantries with Leahy because Leahy had "challenged my integrity" by making charges of cronyism between Cheney and his former firm, Halliburton Co. Leahy on Monday had a conference call to kick off the Democratic National Committee's "Halliburton Week" focusing on Cheney, the company, "and the millions of dollars they've cost taxpayers," the party said.Civility is for opponents, not for enemies. Everyone reading this knows I'm biased against the Democrats in general, but that bias isn't "prejudice" because there's plenty of evidence available on which to base judgement. It should be clear to everyone that the political tactics the Democrats are using as the minority party are far dirtier than anything the Republicans did when they were out of power. Beyond all the "minor" issues like their attempts to block judicial appointments and to talk down the economy, the Democrats are purposefully undermining the War on Terror for their own political gain.
"I didn't like the fact that after he had done so, then he wanted to act like, you know, everything's peaches and cream," Cheney said. "And I informed him of my view of his conduct in no uncertain terms. And as I say, I felt better afterwards."
Do you doubt it? Well here's anecdotal evidence! Lileks notes the following among his friends (and I've noticed the same among mine):
I ask my Democrat friends what they’d rather see happen – Bush reelected and bin Laden caught, or Bush defeated and bin Laden still in the wind. They’re all honest: they’d rather see Bush defeated. (They’re quick to insist that they’d want Kerry to get bin Laden ASAP. Although the details are sketchy.) Of course this doesn't mean they're unpatriotic, etc., obligatory disclaimers, et cetera. But let's be honest.Isn't that sentiment the very definition of putting politics above country?
Many on the anti-war left actually are anti-American, can that be denied? And they uniformly support the Democrats. Can anyone then argue that Democrat politicians aren't influenced by their anti-American donors and constituents? You'd have to be naive, or think the rest of us are.
Some on the left actually are enemies of America, and when leftist politicians do their bidding to undermine the War on Terror, they become enemies of America as well. I think the Vice President's advice to them is right on target.
There appears to be some confusion over the exact phrasing, if that is of interest to you.
And here's some civility from the left. Losers.