Compromise, consensus and power-sharing
"Compromise and consensus and power-sharing are the only path to national unity and lasting democracy." So sayeth our uncompromising, consensus-destroying, power-grabbing pResident. Of course, he was talking about Iraq. His agenda for the US is somewhat different (emphasis added).
It's one of the great strengths of our democracy that we can discuss our differences openly and honestly -- even in times of war. Yet we must remember there is a difference between responsible and irresponsible debate -- and it's even more important to conduct this debate responsibly when American troops are risking their lives overseas.The evidence that the Bushies misled the American people is so overwhelming that any debate about Iraq which does not mention it is dishonest and partisan. AWol managed to include most of the sleazy warmongering techniques that Norman Solomon included in his new book, all in one speech. I'm not sure there's any insult nasty enough to do proper justice to this nastiest of men.
The American people know the difference between responsible and irresponsible debate when they see it. They know the difference between honest critics who question the way the war is being prosecuted and partisan critics who claim that we acted in Iraq because of oil, or because of Israel, or because we misled the American people. And they know the difference between a loyal opposition that points out what is wrong, and defeatists who refuse to see that anything is right.
When our soldiers hear politicians in Washington question the mission they are risking their lives to accomplish, it hurts their morale. In a time of war, we have a responsibility to show that whatever our political differences at home, our nation is united and determined to prevail. And we have a responsibility to our men and women in uniform -- who deserve to know that once our politicians vote to send them into harm's way, our support will be with them in good days and in bad days -- and we will settle for nothing less than complete victory. (Applause.)
We also have an opportunity this year to show the Iraqi people what responsible debate in a democracy looks like. In a free society, there is only one check on political speech -- and that's the judgment of the people. So I ask all Americans to hold their elected leaders to account, and demand a debate that brings credit to our democracy -- not comfort to our adversaries.