Friday, July 18, 2003

I should probably hold off on the quick comments, the Dean thing is more important, but...

When Instapundit claims that "Some of us are trying to help them out[Democrats], but I doubt they'll listen", a little Klaxon goes off in my head.

I honestly doubt that Instapundit (and Mark Steyn, whom he was quoting) are ever, ever "trying to help out" the Democrats. Might as well take advice from Grover Norquist.

Edit: I was going to turn this into a comments entry, but should probably put it where everyone can see it.

IP readers will have noticed that Glenn is pushing the "this doesn't matter and will come back to haunt the Dems" meme. It's stupid, enormously stupid. The media are the ones pushing this (except for the newly emasculated NYT), and there's little reason to believe this will hurt the Dems. On the contrary- any trial lawyer can tell you that if someone's credibility is damaged on one issue, it'll be damaged for any other, and it's all about perception when it comes to credibility. Trying to stir up backlash on this issue would be the height of stupidity for Bush and his campaigners, even if Blair stands by the intel. At this point, the CW is set (Bush wanted to invade, was willing to bend truth to do so) and attempts to assert otherwise are entirely Stanfieldian.

Other right-wing arguments, like "it was only 16 words", "it wasn't about Niger", "Wilson was fibbing", "it was technically accurate", "Blair is still supporting it" (could he possibly do otherwise?), and "Saddam Hussein is an evil, evil man" have either been made useless by conflicting administration stories, irrelevant by new news, or in the latter case can be quickly banished by snorting audibly and showing a clip of Mo Rocca's Magic Saddam Heads.

In any case, the reason liberals are pursuing this is because it shows how poor Bush's credibility really is. This is important; not only does it make a difference for the election and blunt Bush's supposed security advantage, but it sets the stage for the 9/11 report.

(That's the real kicker. Those like Glenn that say "why not pursue 9/11 anyway" miss the point. Rest assured, once that report comes out, it will be. Difference is, now that Bush has lost his halo, the media are going to be going over that thing with a fine toothed comb.)

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