I'm a little disappointed with this blog entry by John Nichols in The Nation yesterday. First of all, why aren't liberal views ever good enough? Why are we always running across the aisle to buddy up to someone who's otherwise nothing but a right wing neanderthal, as if that really proves our point? What the hell do I care if Lee Terry, a certifiable wingnut, thinks Gonzalez should resign? How does that strengthen the argument? If anything, it makes the argument weaker, frankly-kind of like, if Lee Terry likes it, it must be a bad idea. Liberals-including Randi Rhodes, one of the most vocal-fell all themselves to point out that Pat Buchanan was against the invasion of Iraq. Since when do the views of Pat Buchanan engender any sympathy? How does agreeing with the viewpoint of a Jew-hating fascist legitimize anything? Look at the motives behind Buchanan's disdain for the war-racism and strident isolationism. The enemy of my enemy is not always my friend.
Nichols falls into this trap in this piece, especially when he gleefully points out that the most fawning of right-wing institutions and my mortal enemy, The National Review, has called for Gonzalez to step down. Whoop dee-fucking-do. Remember, this is a magazine that continues to deny global warming exists, thinks unbridled free trade is the only answer, is obsessed with the idea that Hillary Clinton might be president, and has two links on it's current web site to articles accusing mainstream Islamists of promoting violence and blames racism on crimes in black neighborhoods. Yeah, these are people whose opinions matter a lot to me.
The NR has been taking this position for a while, accusing the Bush administration of cronyism and incompetence-especially in the cases of Scooter Libby and Gonzalez-in a piece that asked, "Can Anybody Here Play This Game?" a couple of weeks ago. But if you look beneath the surface, this is not the plaintive cry of a bruised conservative looking for a return to decorum and truthfulness in the halls of Justice (literally). Nope. The water-carrying editors of the National Review are less concerned that Gonzo is incompetent to run the Justice Deaprtment than they are he is incompetent to carry out his end of the Rove master plan of Permanent Republican Majority. They are less concerned that Scooter Libby is a sniveling criminal who vindictively outed a CIA operative (and not at all concerned that Cheney and Rove are sniveling criminals who vindictively outed a CIA operative) and more concerned that he was unable to do it without utterly embarrassing and exposing the Vice President's office. The bottom line message is, how can the great dictatorship be accomplished with these horses' asses running the show???
Politics does make strange bedfellows sometimes, but we need to be careful about selling our soul for a buck here. Our positions and ideals need not be compromised by looking for validation from the likes of Lee Terry and the National Review.