October 6, 2005

stupid haberdasher not qualified to be President...

Michael Ledeen on Miers...

.....But the main point--which I made about Katrina and other things--is for all of us, namely that there is no prize for being wrong first. I am not impressed that everyone has an opinion. In fact, most of the time it is a mistake to have an opinion early on. Does anyone in the general rant know much of anythng about Miers as an intellect? About her core beliefs, if indeed she has any? I don't think so. She may be a drooling idiot, or a scintillating mind and personality, or just a boring mediocrity. Who knows? We don't, at least not yet. But we will. When we know, we're entitled to lecture one another, but not yet. Take it easy. I'm old enough to remember people screaming that the stupid haberdasher, Harry Truman, wasn't qualified to be president--surely George Will, on his current performance, would have agreed--and the same sort of people were thrilled that a real Harvard intellect, surrounded by other great Harvard intellects, had defeated the wretched Nixon for the presidency.

Take the basic Neapolitan advice: if you feel an irresistible urge to work, lie down and rest a bit. It will pass. The mark of a cultured person is the length of time between stimulus and response. We all need to learn to pause. NOT to have an instant opinion....

The problem with the Miers nomination is that many conservatives are hungry for a fight. Republicans control the White House and Congress, and yet we have these baffling, frustrating obstacles whenever we try to do anything. It's sort of like fighting against guerilla tactics; we wish the enemy would come out for a stand-up fight, instead of ambushing and running.

It's maddening when Bush, to change metaphors, keeps moving the ball forward a few yards at a time, rather than throwing a long pass for a touchdown. But we forget, and he can't forget, the real war. The threats we worried about after 9/11 are still very alive. Terrorist nukes are still a possibility, though I think we have reduced the danger. Even more of a concern is the long view. If we give up early, if the Middle East remains a cesspit of poverty and despotism, then new terror organizations will surely arise.

And the pressure to call off the war before it's won is unrelenting and insidious. And one of the fronts is the American court system. It's no accident that groups like the ACLU are always trying to limit what we can do to stop terrorists. They claim to be concerned about civil rights, but that is a lie. If the government were locking up Christians or Republicans, we wouldn't hear anything from them.

Posted by John Weidner at October 6, 2005 8:15 AM
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