I was reading an article in the Sun Times today entitled “Unrepentant Cheney Stands His Ground” which discussed Cheney’s new book and his defense of, well, every last thing that happened under the Bush administration, when something jumped out at me.
The man has no internal logic. Or at least, no sense of irony.
Cheney vigorously defends the Iraq fiasco and the failed nation-building effort there as a success but then there is this:
[Cheney] also offers a cautionary tale about the unintended consequences of government regulatory overreach in the private sector, a key issue in the 2012 election. In 1971, he was assistant director of operations for the Cost of Living Council, which imposed wage and price controls in part to lower inflation. Instead, the controls sparked rising inflation, marketplace chaos and food shortages. The experience “confirmed my innate skepticism about what government could and couldn’t do.”
His message to Americans today: “When something as big and ham-handed as the federal government tries to run something as complex and dynamic as the American economy, the result is sure to be a train wreck.”
So if it’s impossible for the federal government to run something complex then how did he think the federal government could run Iraq?
You have to love whoever at the Smithsonian had the balls to approve this campaign. It’s awesome. Great message. Great design. Great typography. Great humor. Just an all around win.
Update: As noted below in the comments below. This was a design experiment not affiliated with the Smithsonian. Serves me right for quick posting something on a Sunday evening that I knew was too good to be government…
Headline at Fox Nation today:
“Fact: Bush Had 2 Times More Coalition Partners in Iraq Than Obama Has in Libya”
Pretty impressive stuff, eh? They then list the coalition partners for each conflict:
Coalition Countries – Iraq – 2003
[Source: US State Department]
Coalition – Libya – 2011
United Arab Emirate
Now let’s look a little closer. Here are a few of those critical allies we’re missing in Libya:
Remind me what possible difference it makes if Macedonia or Eritria is a member of the “coalition”? What are they going to do, lend us their two rowboats and a canoe? It’s a great example of desperately finding anything at all to throw against the administration simply because they’re on the other side. You can object to our involvement but at least try to have a reason.
Update: I should also be noted that Fox’s list (which has no citation) for some reason does not include the members of the UN Security Council who explicitly voted for the No Fly Zone: Bosnia, Colombia, Gabon, Lebanon, Nigeria, Portugal, and South Africa.
History is written by the winners.
Or so it used to be. Now it seems that history is written by whomever wants to lay claim to it. The past few years have seen the Right become apoplectic over the “Mosque At Ground Zero”™ (which was neither at Ground Zero nor solely a mosque) and decry Obama for bowing to Muslim leaders or, *gasp*, even being a Sekrit Moslem himself. Now, the Right has decided that labor unions are evil and should be dismantled.
And yet they waive the Reagan flag whenever they can. Sarah Palin was announcing this month that Americans need to reconnect with Reagan’s values. And even Scott Walker, the Wisconsin Governor who is trying to ban public employees from collective bargaining invoked Reagan in his defense.
Are these people too stupid to read?
Reagan was President of the Screen Actors Guild for 7-1/2 years. He wasn’t just a union member. He wasn’t just a union president. He was president of the most liberal bunch of people in the country short of the UC Berkeley Faculty. Now, it should also be noted that he was not the most moral of fellows as he was one of the classless folks that volunteered to name names in front of the House UnAmerican Activities Committee. So that should keep Pamela Geller happy and able to forgive the fact that Reagan believed in and supported unions. And it wasn’t just that he supported them while he was in Hollywood. This is Reagan as President describing labor organizing as a natural right:
(That popping sound you hear is the heads of people trying to figure out how to twist that statement into proof that he really was against unions.)
“Ok, but Reagan at least was on ‘our’ side about Muslims, right?” asks the Wing Nut.
Alas no, he wasn’t. He secretly sold US weapons to the Mullah’s in Iran after all.
“Yeah, but that was to fight the Communists. Nobody said he liked or trusted Muslims,” responds the Wing Nut.
Well, you’re kind of off base there too my unread friend. After all, when Reagan went to Geneva in 1986 where did he stay? At the home of the Aga Khan – a Muslim Imam and direct descendent of Muhammad – who loaned it to him as a favor for the trip. Why? Because they were friends.
History is so much more complex than simpletons want it to be.
If you’re interested in reading more about Reagan I strongly recommend John Patrick Diggins tremendous biography Ronald Reagan. Jack Diggins was a titan of American Intellectual history and, up until his passing two years ago, was my mother’s companion for 15 years.