Today's Blogs

The Motives of Liberals

Today bloggers debate Karl Rove’s contentious remarks about the liberal response to Sept. 11. They also discuss a Pentagon plan to compile a new recruiting database and San Antonio’s Game 7 victory in the NBA finals.

The motives of liberals:Speaking at a conservative fund-raiser in New York on Wednesday, presidential adviser Karl Rove criticized liberals for responding inadequately to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Rove also suggested that Sen. Dick Durbin’s comments about conditions at Guantanamo Bay have endangered American troops. “Al Jazeera now broadcasts the words of Senator Durbin to the Mideast, certainly putting our troops in greater danger,” Rove said. “No more needs to be said about the motives of liberals.”

“Here is the political ringleader of the majority party and the head of state, calling half of the country traitors,” says New Hampshire policy wonk Minipundit. “This isn’t just wrong; this is despicable.” At SkipperStyle,poli-sci student Jonathan Garro wonders which liberals Rove is talking about. “Well, every single representative, minus one, voted to send troops to Afghanistan,” he writes. “I guess all the liberals voted with a stipulation, which stated that the troops must offer therapy to the enemies?” Democratic standby Atrios thinks the comments represent “the new strategy on Iraq: blame the critics. We’re all Dixie Chicks now.”

Plenty of conservatives think the liberal backlash reveals political desperation. “Do you get the feeling that the Democrats are just a little bit insecure about how the public perceives their aptitude to formulate a competent strategy on fighting terrorism?” asks right-of-center PowerPundit Rick Edwards. At Captain’s Quarters,conservative powerhouseEd Morrissey lines up a collection of liberal quips to back up Rove. The “reason for all this manufactured outrage,” he explains, “is (a) the Democrats needed a distraction from Dick Durbin, and (b) they’ve been proven wrong and don’t like that Karl Rove reminded people about it.” Columnist Michelle Malkin concurs.

Conservative contrarian Andrew Sullivan says the real panic is on the other side of the aisle, where he sees Republican political capital invested in an increasingly unpopular war and a domestic agenda built around the stillborn Social Security reform initiative. “So what to do?” he asks. “You deflect from the awful fall-out from the decision to exempt terror suspects from bans on cruel and inhumane treatment to a senator’s analogy to the Gulag. And instead of leveling with the country about the real difficulty of the war we’re in, acknowledging error and sketching a unifying vision for winning, you divide the country into good folk and ‘liberals’ and hope it works as well as it always has.”

Read more about Rove here and more about Dick Durbin here.

Your permanent record:The Pentagon has started compiling a comprehensive database of high-school and college students to “identify potential recruits in a time of dwindling enlistment,” the Washington Post reported yesterday. The database, said to include information about students’ birth days, grade-point-averages, e-mail addresses, ethnicity, and areas of study, would not be subject to the same privacy laws that prevent the government from collecting similar data from private firms. 

“Kind of gives new meaning to No Child Left Behind and school uniforms, doesn’t it?” quips ecumenical writer Charlie Quimby at Across the Great Divide. At The Department of Louise, liberal activist Opus is particularly offended that students’ ethnicity will be tracked. “This is just all wrong,” she protests. “It’s the stealth draft.” Maryland photographer Roger Wood agrees. “[T]he new draft won’t be called a draft,” he predicts. “[I]t will precisely target (with military precision) vulnerable, under-employed individuals that are not contributing enough to the domestic economy, and bludgeon them with sales pitches about the glory of military service.”

Read more about the new database.

Viva the Alamo!:The San Antonio Spurs defeated the Detroit Pistons last night to win the NBA title for the third time in seven years.

“This team conquered every obstacle put in its way,” praises sports blogger George Coztanza. “The Spurs didn’t have much fanfare. The players on their team didn’t generate the kind of headlines many stars do. They were a soft-spoken team playing in a small Texas city. All they did was play together as a team and work toward one goal, an NBA title.” Piston partisan Uncle Grambo of Whatevs blames the inconsistency of the refs and the poor performance of Detroit’s backcourt. “I would like to see Rip and Chauncey drawn and quartered for pulling an absolute choke job in Game 7 of the NBA Finals.”

“The most underrated superstar of all-time began taking over Game 7 of the NBA Finals early in the second half,” saysChris Chase, who thinks the apathy surrounding the much-maligned series extended even to the celebrations. “Was it just me or did the Spurs appear to be the least-happy team ever to win a major title?” he asks. “The post-game hug between Duncan and Ginobili looked less like an ‘we just won a title’ hug than a ‘your mom just got in a car accident’ hug.”

Read more blog posts about the NBA Finals.

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