Saturday, November 19, 2005

The Brawl

I must say I was somewhat heartened, Bush, by yesterday's congressional brawl. The Democrats seem to have naively believed for years that civil discourse and rational argument were effective weapons of choice in political debate--while for years, your Republicans have been using bare-knuckle bully tactics, along with the rhetoric of slander and deception. Two different games, in which the poor, misguided Democrats have consistently lost to a bunch of gangsters playing by a different and frankly ruthless set of rules, shouting down the smallest voice of opposition as soon as it makes itself heard.

What the Democrats may finally have learned is that your people simply do not listen. The debate is always one-sided, because you're incapable of seeing that another side exists. You're always right--and I guess the pun is appropriate here! I've heard you say again quite recently, Bush, that criticism is legitimate--but then you immediately deprive it of its legitimacy by countering with your own tired cliches: today it was "the defense of freedom" that we're fighting for. No matter that we happen to be depriving countless people of their freedom as we fight. Depriving them, in fact, of their very lives. You shout it loud enough, and often enough, and hope that the truth gets lost in the sound and fury.

Perhaps, then, finally, yesterday will mark a turning point. The disgraceful Republican counterattack on Rep. John Murtha may back-fire, revealing the depths to which your folks will sink to promote their view in lieu of listening with any semblance of thoughtful attention to the views of others. Perhaps we Americans will learn to recognize the bully tactics for what they are, and demand instead a return to rational argument and civil discourse. To me, it seems like a no-brainer. Sadly, though, after countless Swift Boat tactical operations on the part of your sdministration and its supporters, I'm not holding my breath.

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