Posted by: Paul | 04/13/2010

Debate With a Liberal

ON THE IRAQ WAR:

Liberal: “Bush deliberately derailed the nation from pursuing the people who attacked us and lied our nation into a war that has costs thousands of American lives and hundreds of thousands of Iraqi lives, all while making the U.S. a much greater target for domestic terrorism than we were before.”

Me: Anyone who thinks we’re at war with radical Islamists because of Bush is deluded. The fact is, the war had been underway for years before he was even elected. The Khobar Towers bombing, the attack on the U.S.S. Cole, the first attack on the World Trade Center in ’93– the very enemy that attacked on 9/11 had been striking for a long time. Indeed, it was the ineffective response of the U.S. while Clinton was in office that emboldened the terrorists enough to launch 9/11.

It’s now been almost nine years since that deadly day – and not one additional attack on the homeland has occurred. That’s astonishing. It shows us that the war you denounce has been working quite well to keep us safe. Thank God we have brave soldiers willing to put their lives on the line. They know the risks (even in an age where the casualty rate is smaller than it was years ago), yet they aren’t deterred. And you and I sleep safely at night because of them.

ON FINANCIAL REGULATION:

Liberal: “Bush supported the deregulation of the financial industry, which directly led to the near collapse of our nation’s economy, destroying the financial lives of millions and millions of Americans who lost their jobs, their homes and their savings.”

Me: Yes, Bush deserves some blame. He encouraged the manic “home ownership for everybody, no matter how insolvent” policies of his predecessors, which include Democrats. The only way to expand such ownership was to get the financial industry to lend to people with much shakier credit. Thus, we got no-doc loans and other “creative” solutions. Then the same politicians turn around and blame “greedy” Wall Street. There’s plenty of greed there, all right – financiers can and should say no – but there’s plenty more back in Washington.

ON HEALTH CARE:

Liberal: “Obama pushed through a moderate health care plan (it doesn’t even have a public option!) so that most Americans are guaranteed some health care coverage and won’t have their lives destroyed by an illness. Yes, those making $250K per annum will have to pay more. For this he is accused of ‘destroying America.’ Is it really morally acceptable to have nearly 50 million uninsured in the most affluent nation in the world?”

Me: I’m sure the health plan appears “moderate” by the far Left, but there’s a reason it took Obama more than a year to ram the thing through: He was facing strong opposition not only from Republicans, but from Democrats. Otherwise, the Dems could have steam-rolled it right through. After all, they control both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue. Even then, he had to hand out a lot of sweetheart deals to put it over the top. And for what? A plan that will take the deficits that Bush and the Republicans ran up irresponsibly and put them on steroids.

We were going broke before. Now, we’re going broke faster. Thanks, Mr. President!

Should we have millions of uninsured Americans? Absolutely not (although those who don’t want it – many single young adults, for example – shouldn’t be forced to take it, however dumb it is not to have it). But there are better solutions. Let’s start by changing the fact that our tax code treats workplace-provided health insurance differently than insurance you buy on your own – and go from there. There are plenty of common-sense, pro-market solutions that don’t result in us getting our health care from the folks who brought us the post office and the DMV. 

ON THE TEA PARTY MOVEMENT:

Liberal: “The Tea Party movement has been spearheaded by hateful, bigoted demagogues like who deliberately spread lies to stir up Americans’ misdirected anger.”

Me: I’ve never denied there are unacceptable actors within our camp. Indeed, I long said they should be denounced strongly and hounded out. I’m sure you’re just as upset when anarchists join protests against the Iraq War, torch store fronts and overturn police cars, right? You’re just as mad when Greenpeace types engage in domestic terrorism to push for eco-friendly policies, correct? And surely you’re incensed at the people who show up at military funerals with signs saying, “Burn in hell” and the like?

At least, I guess you are. You seem to reserve all your “fury” for the right. No wonder the Onion ran a story in 2007 titled “Nation’s Liberals Suffering From Outrage Fatigue.”

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