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Late Late Nite FDL: Bad Choice

bait and switch

Last month, before the Iraq emergency supplemental spending bill authorized by Congress, Joe Lieberman delivered a speech to the Republican Jewish Coalition, called “Now is the time for choosing.”

If you can stomach reading another pro-war keynote for the pep squad, the text of the speech is on Lieberman’s site, disguised as the longest paragraph, ever. Lieberman borrowed the title of his speech from Ronald Reagan, who supported Barry Goldwater in an address he called “A Time for Choosing” in 1964.

Reagan was complaining that America was heading down the road to Socialism. Lieberman, of course, was offering the false choice between victory in Iraq and “surrendering to barbarism.”

But Lieberman himself made an interesting choice, himself, by picking that speech and not some of the other lines from Reagan’s oration. For example:

How many of us realize that today federal agents can invade a man’s property without a warrant? They can impose a fine without a formal hearing, let alone a trial by jury?

Hmmmmm. Why do you suppose Lieberman didn’t quote that part? Could it be because he voted for the torture bill that ended habeas corpus? Or was it because Joe was a proponent of warrantless wiretaps as early as 1995?

Why didn’t he quote this part?

Yet anytime you and I question the schemes of the do-gooders, we’re denounced as being against their humanitarian goals. They say we’re always “against” things — we’re never “for” anything.

Hmmmmm. Maybe it’s because he stands with a president who once said this about the surge they both supported:

But those who refuse to give this plan a chance to work have an obligation to offer an alternative that has a better chance for success. To oppose everything while proposing nothing is irresponsible.

Hmmmmm. What about this part? Why didn’t he quote this?

There can be no real peace while one American is dying some place in the world for the rest of us. We’re at war with the most dangerous enemy that has ever faced mankind in his long climb from the swamp to the stars, and it’s been said if we lose that war, and in so doing lose this way of freedom of ours, history will record with the greatest astonishment that those who had the most to lose did the least to prevent its happening. Well I think it’s time we ask ourselves if we still know the freedoms that were intended for us by the Founding Fathers.

Hmmmmm. Maybe it’s because Reagan was talking about a soldier being killed in Vietnam and the freedoms we would lose if we didn’t win there. I suppose history didn’t record the loss of all our freedoms in 1975 with enough astonishment to support Lieberman’s claim that if we leave Iraq, we won’t be a “free nation.”

As the news breaks today that our government has been sending children to secret prisons, I guess it’s no shock that the biggest cheerleader for the war on terror only took the title of that speech and not the choice Reagan was offering in it:

You and I are told increasingly we have to choose between a left or right. Well I’d like to suggest there is no such thing as a left or right. There’s only an up or down — [up] man’s old — old-aged dream, the ultimate in individual freedom consistent with law and order, or down to the ant heap of totalitarianism. And regardless of their sincerity, their humanitarian motives, those who would trade our freedom for security have embarked on this downward course.

(Lieberman Bait and Switch image by darkblack.)

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