Step up, Democrats, the war is waiting
Democrats in Washington's congressional delegation are crystal clear about their frustrations with President Bush's dismaying speech announcing...
Democrats in Washington's congressional delegation are crystal clear about their frustrations with President Bush's dismaying speech announcing more of the same in Iraq. They need to bring the same clarity to legislative efforts to move the country away from war.
Political arm-waving and high-profile votes on nonbinding resolutions and other artfully worded parliamentary expressions of opposition are worthless. They do not inform the public about the nature of the president's military escalations, and more importantly they do nothing to turn off the flow of dollars that keep the administration's disastrous mission alive.
Parsing out a role for the congressional power of the purse will not be easy. No one wants to undercut the military men and women already in the field, and on organizational and financial levels, the president's call for more troops blends new units and extends others. If it is complicated to mulch through the budget process, well, too bad. Get to work.
Democrats should use their own bully pulpit to press for diplomatic solutions, or at least hector the administration with questions about initiatives and progress on that front. Every bloody day, it is clear there is no military answer.
The president's speech was profoundly disappointing. So many words and so little to say. He made a feint toward acknowledging mistakes in 2006 and 2005. Americans troops in Iraq are suffering the lethal consequences of decisions made four years ago.
The commander in chief said he will send 21,500 more troops to Iraq — more specifically, to Baghdad. Apparently, the strategic goal of a war that began in March 2003 is to secure the capital.
Four thousand soldiers will go to Anbar province, a description embraced so the painful memories of fights in Fallujah and Ramadi are not recalled. That is the same number pulled out of the area and sent to Baghdad after it was concluded no progress would be made against local militias.
With the Iraq economy on its back, the White House decided to hire Iraqis to do the reconstruction jobs American contractors scooped up after the initial invasion.
Democrats were elected to confront the president's grievous war. They are not allowed a news cycle of snappy quotes only to plead legislative complexity in confronting the financial mechanisms that extend the war.
When vice president of Sub Pop Records Megan Jasper isn't running things at the office, she's working in her garden at her West Seattle home where she and her husband Brian spend time relaxing.
I've been fortunate to have traveled the world: Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia. Exotic islands, too. Wherever I go, I'm struck by one undeniable trut...
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