Monday, July 02, 2007

What LGM Said

Today at Lawyers, Guns and Money, true things were said. A hearty "so say we all" to...

What Scott Lemieux said on the Senate & the Supreme Court:
The Senate should limit itself to exactly the same that Presidents start picking nominees at random from a list of well-qualified ABA judges. Otherwise, it's entirely reasonable for the President to consider ideology, and it's entirely reasonable for the Senate to consider ideology. A President is due considerable ideological deference on cabinet appointments, but not on lifetime appointments to a third branch of government. If you disagree with Alito's legal views, you should oppose his confirmation by the Senate. And if you think that because Alito went through the Senate the GOP will give the next Democratic unlimited deference to choose a qualified justice I hope you'll let me guard that new shipment of i-Phones for you.
...And on Colin Powell:
Given that he was the one person who could possibly have stopped the fiasco, the amount of credit Powell deserves for ex post facto criticisms of the war is "absolutely none." Putting some misguided conception of "loyalty" to crackpot incompetents over the interests of one's country is worthy of no respect whatsoever.
And what Robert Farley said on attacking Iran*:
Even if Iran is supporting insurgents, I cannot visualize a military campaign that would, at reasonable cost, prevent Iran from engaging in that behavior. In other words, attacking Iran is stupid whether or not Iran is aiding Iraqi insurgents. ... An attack on [Iran] is too stupid of an idea to allow it to hinge on the empirical question of whether or not Iran is interfering in Iraq.
...And on why it was clear at the time that it was dumb** to attack Iraq:
The chemical weapons fiasco has led to a substantial misunderstanding of the argument about the case for invading Iraq. While the allegations about chemical weapons formed the center of the administration's case for war, the real problem is not that the administration was lying (although it was), but rather that Iraqi WMD, even if they existed, did not furnish a plausible reason for war. It doesn't excuse the administration to say that its sin was two-fold; on the one hand, it lied about the existence of WMD, and on the other it lied about the implications of WMD. Even if the United States had found a rump WMD program, it would not have justified the war, and I doubt very much that it would have affected the course of the insurgency. Like an attack on Iran for supporting Iraqi insurgents, invading Iraq for having WMD was stupid on its own merits.
I don't know whether I agree with Robert or Glenn about Michael Gordon, though. I don't know enough. Given the NYT's past sins on Iraq, however, my uninformed instinct is to side with Glenn, not LGM's Robert.

* The original reads "Iraq" where I have "[Iran]", but in context it's clearly a typo.

** It was also immoral, but that's another matter.

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