It's been infuriating to see discredited political voices pretend to have credibility on U.S. policy in Iraq. The list of conservatives who got the war wrong, but who nevertheless keep showing up to give advice in American media, is as long as it is unnerving: Doug Feith, Kenneth Pollack, Robert Kagan, Bill Kristol, Paul Wolfowitz, Paul Bremer, et al.
As Rachel put it
on the show last night, "It is very frustrating to see that this is the way that we handle debates about foreign policy in this country. We take people who were so provably, terribly wrong and bring them back and treat them like experts on the very subject they have been so wrong about. It is maddening."
But as the misguided discussion has progressed, some have wondered whether it's possible for this debate to move in an even more idiotic direction. Can the discourse reach the bottom of the barrel, drill a hole, and drop further? Can those involved in the debate find a way to treat the public -- and the concept of basic decency -- with even more contempt?
Behold, a new joint op-ed
in the Wall Street Journal
, co-authored by Dick Cheney and Liz Cheney.
Rarely has a U.S. president been so wrong about so much at the expense of so many.
Yes, the failed former vice president, a man whose catastrophic failures and misjudgments are the stuff of legend, has decided the president cleaning up Cheney's messes has been wrong about everything -- according to the man who was wrong about everything.
Honestly, if I were a satirist trying to write a parody of what a Dick and Liz Cheney op-ed would look like, it would look an awful lot like this garbage published in the Wall Street Journal,
Iraq is at risk of falling to a radical Islamic terror group and Mr. Obama is talking climate change. Terrorists take control of more territory and resources than ever before in history, and he goes golfing.
Note how the Cheneys have gradually made an awkward transition -- from incompetent public officials to right-wing activists to lazy Internet trolls.
Al Qaeda and its affiliates are resurgent and they present a security threat not seen since the Cold War. Defeating them will require a strategy -- not a fantasy. It will require sustained difficult military, intelligence and diplomatic efforts -- not empty misleading rhetoric.
The Cheneys -- the Cheneys -- want to talk about the scourge of "misleading rhetoric." Let that thought roll around in your head for a moment.
Despite clear evidence of the dire need for American leadership around the world, the desperation of our allies and the glee of our enemies, President Obama seems determined to leave office ensuring he has taken America down a notch.
The choice of the word "determined" strikes me as especially interesting. It's one thing for the Cheneys, whose in-office failures still plague the United States years later, to argue that Obama's policies haven't worked. It's something else for this clownish duo to argue that the president is "determined" to undermine the United States.
In effect, the Cheneys seem to believe President Obama wants to hurt America. It's not the result of the administration's policies, they effectively argue, it's the goal of these policies.
Is this what the Republican line on foreign policy and national security has come to? Have we seriously reached the point at which a disgraced former vice president, during an international crisis of his own making, can appear in the media with impunity to falsely accuse a sitting president of trying to hurt America on purpose?
Is the nation comfortable with a degree of political madness this severe?