c.i.'s mentioned for about 4 weeks now that bob somerby has been on a winning streak. i just read today's howler and would agree:
Far more absurd was Dr. Maddow’s groaning political history. Were Eisenhower and Nixon “the conservatives of their own time?” Please. Eisenhower was the moderate of his own time; he defeated “Mr. Conservative,” Robert Taft, to take the 1952 Republican nomination, in a bitter battle between the GOP’s two wings. For the rest of the era, he was assailed as a Communist by the right wing of the day, not unlike Obama today.
(This only happened after “Draft Eisenhower” movements had arisen in both major parties, in 1947 and in 1951. As with Colin Powell in 1995, no one knew which major party Eisenhower might choose to join.)
Was Nixon “the conservative of his time?” Well, not exactly—no. As with Ike, he stood in general contrast to the growing conservative movement inspired by Barry Goldwater—the movement which has continued growing right to the present day.
The doctor was certainly right on one point, if we allow for some characteristic ridiculous overstatement. To a significant extent, “the story of modern American politics” really is “the story of your father’s and your grandfather’s Republican Party being to the left of today’s liberals” in certain ways. To cite a slightly misconstrued example: Early in her lecture, Maddow had quoted Eisenhower making the highlighted statement:
MADDOW: Listen to the way he goes after the right here. "Should any political party attempt to abolish Social Security, unemployment insurance, and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group, of course, that believes you can do these things, but their number is negligible and”—and the president says—“their number is negligible and they are stupid.”
That is not what Barack Obama said last night. That is way to the left of any national Democrat at this point. That was all Republican President Dwight David Eisenhower. That was all the stuff he said when he was president.
Maddow failed to note a salient fact. When Eisenhower made those fiery statements, he was making a simple, accurate factual statement about the shape of American politics. In the 1950s, there really weren’t a whole lot of people who favored abolishing Social Security. But there are many such people today. This change has occurred, in large part, because the liberal/progressive/Democratic worlds have stumbled along for the past several decades under the yoke of “intellectual leaders” like Maddow.that's an excerpt. and before some 1 wonders, i'm not drained from writing last night's post. c.i. was concerned about me dredging all that up and that's why she hit hard and did so at the start of yesterday's snapshot, not further down, in case i ended up not able to go through every thing required to write that. but i was fine with it. and tonight i'm just really tired, sorry.
let's close with c.i.'s 'Iraq snapshot:'