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Stockholm Syndrome

norrmalmstorg_stockholm_sweden.jpg(The bank that was the site of the Norrmalmstog Robbery, the event that led to the coining of the term "Stockholm Syndrome".  If you can't see this picture, go here, download a free copy of Firefox, and then try it again.)

It is indicative of the decades-long iron control the Republicans and their fellow conservatives have had on American discourse that, unless they make a conscious effort to do otherwise, regular people and even progressives speak using FOX News framing on the issues.  Worse yet, with time and usage, the Overton Windows start to work their magic, and what would have been unthinkable when expressed in standard English becomes settled policy in the lexicon dictated by Republican FOX Newspeak.

We've seen it with the Republicans' use of "the death tax" for the estate tax — a tax 99.99% of the readers of this site will never come close to having to pay and is only paid by the very richest Americans.  We've seen it with the media's adoption of the term "partial-birth abortion", which is a made-up term with no medical meaning, only an ideological one. 

And now we see two Democratic Senators from Montana — guys who should flipping know better — putting smiles on Karl Rove's face as they undermine their fellow Dems

"It's time for a change of course in Iraq, and I'm committed to working together with my colleagues on a solution," Baucus said in a prepared statement. "However, I'm not for pulling the rug out from under our brave military men and women serving in Iraq. I cannot support cutting off funding while they're fighting on the frontlines overseas. It just wouldn't be right."


"I am doing everything in my power as a U.S. senator to end the war in Iraq, but I will not cast any vote that I believe compromises the safety and security of our troops on the ground," Tester said, also in a prepared statement.

"I have said for two years that the president needs to develop a plan to get us out of Iraq," Tester said. "The Congress and the American people have spoken; the president needs to start listening."

 As Matt Singer of Left in the West says in response to this: 

There's a couple problems with this — first and foremost, it's misleading. As a staffer from one of their offices told me himself, there's this whole false understanding that passing Feingold-Reid would literally mean that tanks in Iraq would start running out of gas and the like. That's simply not true — and it's not how our government actually operates. Our Senators shouldn't perpetuate myths.

Second, they're both using common right-wing attacks to undermine progressive Democratic leadership. They could have both simply said, "My position is that the President and the Pentagon need to come up with a plan. This bill doesn't accomplish that." Instead, they threw in a gratuitous, "Leading members of my own party want to 'pull out the rug' on our troops in a way that 'I believe compromises the safety and security of our troops on the ground.'" Those are Mitch McConnell's talking points.

Third, they've effectively locked themselves in. If this vote was simply out-of-line with their current position, they could move based on new evidence. But they've now said anything like Feingold-Reid is tantamount to voting against the troops — something that will no doubt be used against them if they change their position down the road as it becomes clear that President Manchild refuses to do anything about the mess he's gotten our country in.

Yup, yup and yup.  There's understanding the other side's viewpoint, and then there's mindlessly repeating it verbatim like some sort of Stockholm Syndrome victim.  If you're going to disagree with your own side's leadership, at least try not to sound like Tony-flippin'-Snow when you're doing it.

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