Well, folks. I'm back. After a year of blogging inaction, including a semester in the Balkans and a summer in DC, it's time to gear up for a whole new season of politics and prose. So, without wasting any more time...
The Democratic Party has a troublesome tendency to act as if the Iraq War never happened. All too many Members of Congress refuse to make the neccesary commitment to Iraq to help it emerge from the mess its in. Whether you thought the war was right or wrong, to leave Iraq or not give reconstruction the funding it needs is to doom Iraqis to a society of anarchy. At this point, progressives should be working to ensure a progressive, democratic outcome. Instead, all too many are opposing foreign aid or making it only in loans - two things we constantly criticize the conservatives and neo-liberals for doing.
David Brooks' latest column,The Good, the Bad, the Ugly finds three types of Democrats in the Congress. Pelosi Democrats who don't want to deal with Iraq, Bayh Democrats who will deal with it, but not spend American money there and "the Cantwell Democrats. This group could be named after Joe Biden, Joe Lieberman or Dick Gephardt, but Maria Cantwell, the Washington senator, sits at Scoop Jackson's old desk on the Senate floor. The Cantwell Democrats are dismayed with how the Bush administration has handled the postwar period. They'd like to see the rich pay a bigger share of the reconstruction cost. But they knew yesterday's vote wasn't about George Bush. It was about doing what's right for the Iraqi people and what's right, over the long term, for the American people. These Democrats supported the aid package, and were willing to pay a price to give the Iraqis their best shot at a decent future. This week, Gephardt, who has to win over Iowa liberals to have any shot at the White House, is the bravest man in Washington.
Those are the three Democratic visions — the good, the bad and the ugly. Right now the Pelosi wing of the party is dominant, and the Cantwell wing is beleaguered. So this is a party teetering on the brink of full-bore liberal isolationism."
I'm proud to be a Cantwell Democrat.
:: Judah 1:12 AM [+] ::