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Bloggingheads
06-08-2008, 11:07 PM

claymisher
06-08-2008, 11:25 PM
Iraq war apologists duke it out! Woohoo!

It's a very serious, thoughtful, diavlog that has never been made in such detail or with such care.

bjkeefe
06-08-2008, 11:34 PM
Elvis:

You once said, in a post titled "Here we go again...:"

... but how many times are we going to have diavlogs on wartime legal issues where the participants approach these issues from the left or center-left?

Here we have a diavlog between a hawk and a hawk who maybe slightly wishes he had been a little less of a hawk once upon a time.

Bob Wright sez: Balance? Bah! I spit on your fetish for balance!

In all seriousness, I am not really complaining. Always good to have some discussions between people who aren't polar opposites.

bjkeefe
06-08-2008, 11:35 PM
It's a very serious, thoughtful, diavlog that has never been made in such detail or with such care.

Crap. You beat me to it. ;^)

bjkeefe
06-09-2008, 12:29 AM
At around 45 min in, I am moved to say: The only thing worse than speculating about vice presidential choices is apologizing -- at length -- for it beforehand.

"This is going to hurt me more than it hurts you?"

No meta. Carry on.

graz
06-09-2008, 12:41 AM
http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/11762?in=00:27:26&out=00:27:52
Mickey and Jonah as Democratic consultants!

Jonah makes the case for the projection of his own ideas:
http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/11762?in=00:37:47&out=00:38:46
I stand opposed - does that make me a fascist?

fedorovingtonboop
06-09-2008, 12:48 AM
jonah = another con robot. what kind of person has the balls to fail as bad as conservatives and still actually think their opinion is worth something?? seriously, what's the point of even following politics if practically every one of your arguments is conservative? why do you even bother? jonah, just make a website for you and all your NR coworkers that only says "We're conservative." with a list of your names and we can extrapolate from there. you obviously read evidence based on what you want to believe rather than the opposite. furthermore, your worthless con movement (yes, i group you all together) failed on nearly every level and every policy for the last eight years. do you read actual respectable publications like The Economist, etc.? try actually going to europe rather than reading City Journal bashing it and then formulating an opinion based on that. life doesn't happen to align totally with a con opinion, it's way more subtle. give it a rest, man, what's the point? most people, ya know, change after the movement they're most closely aligned with fails as bad as the bushies have. F-A-I-L
ROBOT!

nojp
06-09-2008, 12:53 AM
goldberg = (blowhard)backwards

bjkeefe
06-09-2008, 12:54 AM
I lost count. Which cliché did Jonah utter more, "out in the wilderness" or "unreconstructed {Cuomoism | McGovernism | Mondaleism | liberalism}?"

It's the new "threw under the bus!"

Wonderment
06-09-2008, 02:36 AM
But...ummh (http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/11762?in=00:04:15&out=4:30)

artoad
06-09-2008, 04:34 AM
I remember when Obama was dealing with the whole bitter brouhaha and his problems with the white working class in a major way for the first time that the name of Dick Gephardt came up as a possible VP remedy. I thought not bad. Gephardt's prosaic decency would be a nice balance to Obama's inspirational loftiness. He's from the heartland, appeals to white male workers and it would not look like a pander to the embittered feminists. On the other hand, the choice of Jim Webb appeals to the sensational thrill-seeker in me. With McCain and Webb's temperament problems, I look forward at the very least to fisticuffs between the two. Given the right provocation how about the most famous American political duel since Burr/Hamilton.

InJapan
06-09-2008, 04:58 AM
First off, this diavlog struck me as being very male. By this I mean both parties were primarily into pontificating their beliefs, rather than asking (a series of) deeply probing questions and fleshing out what the other person truly believes. Also in how the VP guessing struck me very much like the fantasy sports games where guys try to pick an ideal team roster.

I have no problem with two participants with similar views discussing issues, but it would be more interesting if a participant would ask "why?" in response to their fellow's proclamations.

On the topic of what "conservatives" and "conservatism" must do now... which is sprinkled throughout this diavlog though it is not explicitly in the topics marked... I look at this from the viewpoint of someone who is probably more libertarian than conservative. One thing that concerns me about popular conservatism of late is the rash of anti-science (or even anti-objectivism) that has become vogue in certain "conservative" quarters. We see this in dealing with global warming and intelligent design, in the obvious cases, but it exists also in the subtle areas of economics.

Mr. Goldberg's magazine is a guilt party here. I remember watching Buckley in the 70's on TV, and the current NRO all too often seems to have drifted into a shallower end of the pool.

If Republicans and Conservatives are fated to spend some time in the wilderness then let's hope that they will rediscover the intellectual high points of the last 5 centuries or so of Western civilization. They could start with the idea of "liberty" that Jonah did touch upon briefly in this diavlog, and try to answer the question of how to assure personal (and collective?) liberty in the light of problems the world of the 21st century is experiencing as we grow to 7 billion people and beyond.

deebee
06-09-2008, 10:53 AM
The VP discussion between these two was very objective. Jonah in particular surprised me.

My thoughts on their discussion are: Bayh would provide good visuals but probably wouldn't appeal much to blue collars -- a little too perfect. I agree that a Hillary/Obama marriage would be made in hell. Another woman would not do because women would than ask, "Why not Hillary, because she is much more qualified. I kind of like Webb, but there is a lot of blatant sexism in his writings and past which would not play well with women. Bill Richardson would help him with Hispanics but would cause fireworks among Clinton supporters who feel that he double crossed them. No also to Dodd for similar reasons. Joe Biden might be a good choice because of his foreign affairs and likability but he's a little too old and I don't know if he'd be willing to be No. 2 (a ticket reversal here might work for me). Governors of Ohio or Pennsylvania might get him votes but would not help with his gap in foreign affairs. Guess there is no perfect candidate for Obama. Maybe he should just run alone...

deebee
06-09-2008, 11:09 AM
Re: McCain's choices:
Lieberman would not bring him ANY Democratic votes. Don't know much about Palin but I agree that she appears to be very charismatic and she would likely gain him some female crossover votes, particularly if she is seen as moderate. Jodi Rell of Connecticut might be another choice since she is a moderate with more experience than Palin but I have no idea what she is like. Jindall is a unique, magnetic personality but I agree -- way too young.

One person who could fill the bill regarding economic issues might be Michael Bloomberg if he is willing. Would bring in a lot of crossover votes and help with the Jewish vote, many of whom appear uncomfortable with Obama. Might also help with a couple of northeastern states that could be in play.The governors of SC and MN would not help him gain any states since SC will go Republican anyways and MN will go Democrat. Romney might win him Michigan but his Mormonism might make a lot of Evangelicals stay home.

Hard choice for McCain too -- doesn't seems to be perfect match out there so it's a crap shoot for both he and Obama. Good luck guys!

JIM3CH
06-09-2008, 11:41 AM
almost perfect VP for Obama: Sam Nunn

Billiam
06-09-2008, 12:17 PM
I really don't get this "unreconstructed liberal" meme that conservatives are pushing. The only left-of-center that he is pushing is providing insurance for those who can't afford it (not "nationalizing" health care). I suppose I can try to understand why they think it might be effective politically, but Goldberg seems to actually believe in it.

Billiam
06-09-2008, 12:19 PM
*left-of-center policy, that is

Anyuser
06-09-2008, 02:06 PM
As justifications for the war, Bush's doctrine of preemptive war was of primary, dispositive importance, and a definition of national interest, but these guys don't mention it at all. If the administration/Congress/electorate/press had not believed Iraq had WMD, there would have been no war. Iraq would have been in the same category then as Rwanda, Darfur, and Burma.

Wilsonian rationalizations were of entirely secondary importance, and served mainly to palliate the preemptive war argument. The sentimental argument was, don't think of this as Roman-style whomping of a small country by a big country: Saddam is evil incarnate, the Iraqis will greet us as liberators, and the world will view us as good guys. This argument completely stymied anti-war opponents. Nobody had the gumption to say, who gives a shit about the Iraqis?

The WMD argument was wrong, and the sentimental argument was ignorant and stupid. The war was "lost" within weeks after Baghdad fell when it became clear that (i) there were no WMD and (ii) we were hated by the Iraqis.

bjkeefe
06-09-2008, 03:02 PM
almost perfect VP for Obama: Sam Nunn

Arguments against: Too old, record of anti-gay bigotry.

The second may or may not be a deal-breaker. It wouldn't with me, because he seems to have evolved his views here. I can accept where and when he grew up as an explanation for things he's said in the past. I can also believe that his attitudes have really changed, since I went through a major change in views on this myself. That said, Obama did cause a problem for himself back when he retained some gay-denier type to campaign on his behalf in South Carolina, and refused to dump the guy even after noise was made. I do see the "Obama hates gays" meme on the devout Clinton sites, so there is some chance that this could be another reason for people to stay home in November.

The age thing, to my mind, is more potentially problematic. Nunn does have the advantage of having been out of Washington for a while, but he still comes across as "old guard." If you're looking to project the new, youthful, energetic, etc. image, this detracts a little bit.

I myself admire some of the work Nunn has done, particularly on non-proliferation issues, so I wouldn't be crushed by the choice. I don't, however, think it's Obama's best, at least not in the context of campaigning.

One strong argument in his favor: He could well put Georgia in play. When one considers the black voter turnout that Obama will likely draw and adds to that Nunn's potential for attracting some older whites who might otherwise be hesitant to vote Democratic (or for Obama), it's something to think about. At the very least, you could make McCain have to spend a lot of money just to hold what used to be a gimme state for the GOP.

bjkeefe
06-09-2008, 03:10 PM
deebee:

Lieberman would not bring him ANY Democratic votes.

I think you're right about that. In fact, if anything, he'd be an additional incentive for some less-than-thrilled lefties to get out and vote.

I do wonder, though, if McCain/Lieberman still appeals to the David Broder types. Certainly, this was a popular proposal among the punditocracy a while back, even before Holy Joe started obviously showing his support for McCain. Of course, he may well turn off more on the right than he does gain from the extremist moderate camp.

If he did end up getting it, though, it would make for an interesting trivia question some years from now: Name the only person to lose as a VP for both parties.

bjkeefe
06-09-2008, 03:22 PM
I really don't get this "unreconstructed liberal" meme that conservatives are pushing. The only left-of-center [policy] that he is pushing is providing insurance for those who can't afford it (not "nationalizing" health care). I suppose I can try to understand why they think it might be effective politically, but Goldberg seems to actually believe in it.

I think you got part of it with your last sentence. For attack dogs like Goldberg, what matters is not the truth behind a label, but how sticky it is. The rightwing noise machine has been brilliantly successfully in attaching negative connotations to the word liberal over the past quarter-century at least, so it makes perfect sense to draw on the results of that work, and it helps to sell the message if you actually believe it.

More charitably, labeling some policy or set of policies as "unreconstructed liberalism" can be thought of as a relative term. If you're far enough to the right, the idea that Obama has said he wants to do away with Bush's tax cuts for the rich is automatically "same old liberal" thinking. It doesn't matter to the Cheetos eaters of the world that Obama is talking about a return to the tax rates of the US in the 1990s, not, say, the UK in the 1960s. Tax increases: bad. No more talking.

And similarly for many other stances that Obama has, from the environment to health care to civil rights. If it's not in lockstep with what the NRO people favor, it's "unreconstructed liberalism" by definition.

JIM3CH
06-09-2008, 03:48 PM
You’re right. Nunn is definitely old guard. But his expertise, arising from long experience, includes non-proliferation, military and foreign policy. And these are areas of perceived Obama weakness. Even though he is personally a social conservative on some issues, I suspect he would be able to muster sufficient political correctness to (at least) prevent alienation. I believe he would be a good background player with technical strengths that Obama could really rely on.

I wonder if he would be agreeable if Obama were to ask him?

bjkeefe
06-09-2008, 03:58 PM
Jim:

But his expertise, arising from long experience, includes non-proliferation, military and foreign policy. And these are areas of perceived Obama weakness.

No disagreement. There is, however, another level to this: some people think that picking a running mate whose main strength is seen as military and foreign policy has the drawback of calling attention to Obama's perceived shortcomings in this area. This gets a little into triple bank shot contrarianism, but I thought I'd point it out anyway.

bkjazfan
06-09-2008, 04:06 PM
Obama is going to need all the help he can get. After going to a church that pushed a lot of hate speech apparently most of it against whites for 20 years I'm sure some have the impression he believes Wright/Phlegar view of America.

John

Jelperman
06-09-2008, 04:10 PM
Care to give examples (actual quotes) of anti-white bigotry from Wright?

Jelperman
06-09-2008, 04:21 PM
Extra lame points to Beinart for claiming that Jeane Kirkpatrick supported Samoza because she was worried that what would come after would be worse. Uh, no: She had a crush on fascist dictators in general and Samoza was only one of them. She also had a thang for the Nazi death squads in El Salvador (which both TNR and NR supported). When four American nuns were raped, murdered and hacked apart with machetes (not necessarily in that order) by one of the Nazi death squads, Kirkpatrick said the nuns "were more than just nuns" -implying that they deserved it.

rgeilfuss
06-09-2008, 06:32 PM
I don't entirely buy the distinction. Historically, constitutional rights have been assured by the existence of some sort of representative body. Obviously, by our standards, these societies--Renaissance Florence and Venice, 18th century and 19th century England and America--are not so democratic, but they were also lacking in constitutional protections. You could make a convincing argument that, in any society, property affords both freedom and power over others. In those older constitutional society, the key criterion in having a political voice--in being a part of 'democracy'--was ownership of property. This was no less true in ancien regime France and other quasi-feudal societies. When one considers the power of lobbyists today, compared to the power of the average voter, one must conclude that things have not changed as much as we pretend. Capital has replaced property, perhaps. But the means required to be independent--in other words, to be free--remain the essential matter. As such, we should want prosperity to be as broad as possible. Massive fortunes are unhealthy, both politically and aesthetically, particularly in America, where the massively rich have always been impressively vulgar.

DCjumper
06-10-2008, 12:26 AM
Once again, I find these two worth my time and might I add, given the acidic comments here, I am stupified as to why no one has marveled that both Peter and Jonah kept an even tone through it all.

bjkeefe
06-10-2008, 01:08 AM
DCjumper:

... I am stupified as to why no one has marveled that both Peter and Jonah kept an even tone through it all.

You say that like you expect it to be a hard thing for them to do.

Christopher M
06-10-2008, 03:37 AM
Wow, I'm not too far in but I just hit Jonah's self-introduction and damn, Jonah is a self-satisfied dude. It's kind of annoying but then it's so out there that it's almost just cute. It would be pretty fun to be that impressed with oneself, I have to say.

claymisher
06-10-2008, 04:13 AM
Whenever I actually see Doughy Pantload (http://thepoorman.net/2008/01/22/never-before-has-old-blog-nonsense-been-hurriedly-stapled-together-into-an-80-page-book-with-such-thoughtfulness-or-such-care/) I'm reminded of our beloved leader's classic turn of phrase, "noxious little butterball (http://www.nonzero.org/tnrnewt.htm)".

bjkeefe
06-10-2008, 05:00 AM
Whenever I actually see Doughy Pantload (http://thepoorman.net/2008/01/22/never-before-has-old-blog-nonsense-been-hurriedly-stapled-together-into-an-80-page-book-with-such-thoughtfulness-or-such-care/) I'm reminded of our beloved leader's classic turn of phrase, "noxious little butterball (http://www.nonzero.org/tnrnewt.htm)".

LOL!

Another curiously relevant bit from your second reference (http://www.nonzero.org/tnrnewt.htm):

Thus, in a society with truly robust "family values," a man who traded in his wife for a younger model would stand roughly zero chance of retaining elective office.

Of course, it's all the fault of the secularist, moral-relativist liberals who killed the family values.

claymisher
06-10-2008, 02:28 PM
That's a great little essay, isn't it?


I wish Bob would stop wasting his time with Mickey's carping and go back to writing columns like that.

graz
06-10-2008, 02:31 PM
That's a great little essay, isn't it?


I wish Bob would stop wasting his time with Mickey's carping and go back to writing columns like that.

He is working on the release of his big "God" book.

Thus Spoke Elvis
06-10-2008, 04:23 PM
Apples and oranges, Brendan. If I was annoyed by diavlogs between people sharing similar perspectives, I wouldn't be watching bloggingheads as often as I do. My problem is when subjects are exclusively discussed by people who have the same position. While Jonah and Peter both share a similar "boy, I wish I hadn't been so gung-ho about a war with Iraq back in 2002" perspective, we've had plenty of diavlogs where the participants take a different approach (e.g., Eli Lake, Juan Cole).

Thus Spoke Elvis
06-10-2008, 04:27 PM
I find it amusing that Jonah and Peter have crawled back to bloggingheads after their spectacular failure trying to start a rival brand (I watched What's Your Problem a few times, and it was dull, dull, dull).

Bob is truly generous in victory.

Thus Spoke Elvis
06-10-2008, 04:39 PM
Extra lame points to Beinart for claiming that Jeane Kirkpatrick supported Samoza because she was worried that what would come after would be worse. Uh, no: She had a crush on fascist dictators in general and Samoza was only one of them.

Yes, that seems like a much more likely explanation than the one Beinart offered.

Bloggin' Noggin
06-10-2008, 05:51 PM
I find it amusing that Jonah and Peter have crawled back to bloggingheads after their spectacular failure trying to start a rival brand (I watched What's Your Problem a few times, and it was dull, dull, dull).



Agreed! Every now and then, I used to comment over there that everyone should just watch BloggingHeads instead. Those were the days when BHtv wasn't producing two episodes a day (less than one actually), so it wasn't that I objected to more content -- but it was just dreary.
In fact none of the immitators have done as well. David Corn tried to do something like a brief BloggingHeads, but that didn't amount to much. And "The Table" over at the Atlantic is OK, but nowhere near BloggingHeads.

Thus Spoke Elvis
06-10-2008, 06:00 PM
Oh yeah, I remember the David Corn rip-off! The gimmick was that he would discuss politics with someone while they ate a ridiculously expensive meal at some fancy restaurant.

Strange how that didn't catch on with viewers...

piscivorous
06-10-2008, 06:15 PM
It was oysters and with Richard Miniter, I believe.

ledocs
06-11-2008, 05:21 PM
This performance by Goldberg was repellent in its complete idiocy. We're not supposed to bemoan the complete disaster that is the Iraq War because it's only a prudential failure, not a failure in "first-order" policy considerations. This is anti-realism taken to a completely nonsensical, ridiculous extreme. The only way to explain the fact that the author of these comments can pen a #1 NY Times bestseller is that the right will pay for anything that lines their pockets and that people are generally morons. Rarely have I seen an "intellectual" who was so obviously either stupid or dishonest.

pod2
06-16-2008, 12:35 AM
A few things.

1) Seriously, I think that this is the most lucid and anti-knee-jerk-talking-points that I've seen Jonah Goldberg.

2) I completely agree with Jonah's assertion that genocides or atrocities in which we are involved or are responsible for carry a heavier political and moral burden. THus, I am not surprise by the vehemence of Goldberg's objections to the massive helicopter and arms sales to the Turkish government as they massacred and ethnically cleansed thousands of civilians in Kurdish villages in the 90s. (30-40,000 civilian deaths, 1-2 million refugees by State Dept. accounts, dwarfing figures from Kosovo in 1999). I am heartened by his citing of Suharto's campaign to kill 600,000 'communist' villagers and peasants in Indonesia in 1965-66. I am impressed by his condemnations of the
'strategic hamlet' program of building rural prison camps for Vietnamese farmers and carpet bombing the North and South in the late 60s. I also marvel at the moral courage it took for Mr. Goldberg to condemn Saddam Hussein's atrocities in Hallabjah and throughout the Kurdish provinces in the late 80s, including the al Anfal campaign. This campaign, after all, was supported by the Reagan administration, who gave diplomatic cover in the UN, funneled agricultural and military aid to the Saddam regime.

3) Peter's explanation of the justification of the Kosova bombing does not jibe with the inconvenient facts of March 1999. The UNHCR did not register a single refugee until several days AFTER the NATO bombing began. The massive flow of refugees out of Kosova into Albania did not start until well after the US cruise missiles began to land. Thus, as a matter of logic, ethnic cleansing and a refugee crisis could not have been a reason for the NATO campaign. It is a common misperception, and a quite powerful one. And it illustrates some important factors in post hoc justification of wars of aggression. E.G. making up reasons with no basis in fact often go unremarked on in imperial political classes. It has happened in every imperial political class in history, so why should our political class be an exception (ok, I invite you to find exceptions, and provisionally retract my claims of EVERY imperial political class).

Aside from these points, I did honestly appreciate the ability of both good looking guys to actually listen, talk, listen, consider, and talk. A welcome break from cable news, or even the normal conn/bill matchups.