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August 30, 2007


I'm thinking that there ought to be some benchmarks that Bush needs to meet.


There you go again, dpu, setting an impossibly high bar!


OT, but is there any way you can tell one of your estimable co-bloggers at Sully's place to put a sock in it? One Martin Peretz is plenty, though Mr. Kirchick appears to be auditioning for th understudy roll.

Funny, they didn't seem to mind setting an unreachable bar for schools in the No Child Left Behind legislation. Or for the states with the Real ID act. Or with requiring flattened Louisiana parishes to come up with 10% matching funds when they have no tax base left. Or with requiring Iraqis wishing to emigrate to get a personal recommendation from a US general.

This rhetorical device -- juxtaposing a speaker's old quotes with his or her more recent quotes to show hypocrisy/duplicity, thereby pulling the ground from beneath the speaker's latest argument (in the way the roadrunner informs the coyote that the coyote has just overshot the cliff's edge, this style of blog post tips readers that a petard is laying on the ground, out of the speaker's own arsenal, which will soon hoist, in both cases, coyote and petard, collapsing and hoisting only becoming possible after an observer points out the discrepancy between real reality and coyote/petard reality) -- this device which was used to great effect by Billmon reminds me that I miss reading what Billmon has to say.

no quagmire left behind.

But, see, the children, the parishes, and the Iraqis are Not Republicans. It's Always Okay If You're A Republican.

Isn't that in the Constitution somewhere? If not, just wait a few more judicial nominations.

The quotes you cite, however, don't state that in January the Administration called for Iraq to meet those benchmarks by September. Indeed, in the first item you cite, President Bush makes reference to Iraqi officials' assurances that they would undertake certain actions by *November* in order to make progress toward meeting the benchmark.

And then, in the last two quotes, you highlight passages referring to "standards" -- but the "standards" refer not to benchmarks, but for the standard set by the GAO report -- i.e., to grade Iraq not according to progress toward the goals but, rather, according to whether or not they've met or not met the goals. That was made clear by the paragraph preceding your second Perino quote:

"At the White House, officials argued that the GAO report, which was required by legislation President Bush signed last spring, was unrealistic because it assigned 'pass or fail' grades to each benchmark, rather than assessing whether the Iraqis have made progress toward reaching the benchmark goals."

Weak effort. You're supposed to take Monday off, not today.

Pooh: see my latest post.

Thread HijacK:

Support the Jena 6:

Who are the Jena Six?
The Jena Six are a group of black students who are being charged with
attempted murder for beating up a white student who was taunting them
with racial slurs, and continued to support other white students who
hung three nooses from the high schools "white tree" which sits in
the front yard.>Jena 6 timeline>Online Petition: Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice>Jena Six slide show>More Photo's>Video>Complete Article

In a small still mostly segregated section of rural Louisiana, an all-
white jury heard a series of white witnesses called by a white
prosecutor testify in a courtroom overseen by a white judge in a
trial about a fight at the local high school where a white student
who had been making racial taunts was hit by Black students.

The fight was the culmination of a series of racial incidents
starting when whites responded to Black students sitting under
the "white tree" at their school by hanging three nooses from the
tree. The white jury and white prosecutor and all white supporters of
the white victim were all on one side of the courtroom. The Black
defendant, 17-year-old Mychal Bell, and his supporters were on the

The jury quickly convicted Mychal Bell of two felonies — aggravated
battery and conspiracy to commit aggravated battery. Bell, who was a
16-year-old sophomore football star at the time he was arrested,
faces up to 22 years in prison. Five other Black youths await similar
trials on attempted second-degree murder and conspiracy charges.

The people in Jena are fighting for justice and they need legal and
financial help. Since the arrests, a group of family members have
been holding well-attended meetings, and have created a defense fund —
the Jena 6 Defense Committee. They have received support from the
NAACP, the Louisiana ACLU and Friends of Justice.

I'm giving as much as I can, and cross-posting to Slactivist and Shakesville.

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