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Musings on the world-wide movement for ethical business, frugal marketing, and how honesty, integrity, and quality combine with deep relationship building to create business success. By the originator of the Ethical Business Pledge campaign and award-winning author of Principled Profit: Marketing That Puts People First and five other books

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Saturday, April 21, 2007

Earth to McConnell and Lieberman: Telling the Truth is NOT Dissing the Troops

In a rare act of almost blunt truth-telling–ok, so I’m being facetious–in a mouthful of weasely gobbdelygook–Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid stated the obvious:

“I believe myself that the secretary of state, secretary of defense and — you have to make your own decisions as to what the president knows — (know) this war is lost and the surge is not accomplishing anything as indicated by the extreme violence in Iraq yesterday,” Reid said Thursday.

Give me a break–is this the best the Democrats can do? How about some straightforward honest language like “We never should have been in this war in the first place and we’re losing. Time to get out–starting right now.”

Still, even mild-mannered Mr. Mealy Mouth was instantly attacked as unpatriotic. The same article reports this idiotic response from Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell:

I can’t begin to imagine how our troops in the field, who are risking their lives every day, are going to react when they get back to base and hear that the Democrat leader of the United States Senate has declared the war is lost.

And this from that darling of the neocons, the once-Democratic Senator Joseph Lieberman:

This is exactly the wrong time to question our strategy in Iraq, or that our new strategy has failed.

All I can say to McConnell and Lieberman is to quote Ronald Reagan: “there you go again!” The insidious right-wing attack on the patriotism of anyone who questions this illegal, immoral, and incompetent war continues–and we on the left have the obligation to call the scoundrels on it. Last time I read the Constitution, that very freedom to dissent was a big part of what set the United States apart from other more repressive governments in the 18th century.

Oh, and Lieberman got one thing right: unquestionably, our Iraq strategy has failed.

If our troops (and I respect them enormously, even if I have zero respect for the mission they are forced to perform) are attempting to defend the idea of democracy, that idea starts with the freedom to dissent. And calling us unpatriotic will not get us to shut up.


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