Saturday, June 18, 2005

THANK YOU, MR. CONYERS!

The following was in an e-mail I received today from www.moveon.org:

"Yesterday, Congressman John Conyers delivered 560,000 petition signatures to the White House—including more than 360,000 from MoveOn members—demanding that President Bush address smoking-gun evidence of deception in the Downing Street Memos.

"After holding nearly four hours of hearings about the Downing Street Memos on Capitol Hill, the Congressman went over to The White House accompanied by a dozen leading Democrats. They marched solemnly towards The White House gate as swarms of media clicked, filmed and shouted questions. As they approached the gate to White House grounds a lone, young Bush staffer met the delegation—he literally trembled when Conyers said they had come to deliver the signatures of 560,000 Americans demanding the truth about Iraq. The White House staff refused Conyers entrance to see the president but accepted the petitions.

"MoveOn members made a huge difference here—shooting up the number of petition signers at a critical time in the drive to bring attention to the Downing Street Memos.

"And thanks in part to your pressure and Congressman Conyers' high profile hearings andpetition delivery, the media has finally begun to cover the scandalous Downing Street Memos—we counted 1,600 news stories in Google today. The Seattle Times, Denver Post, Boston Globe, CNN, ABC and hundreds of other media outlets have been forced to report on the memos.

"Howard Kurtz, media columnist for The Washington Post, wrote about the surging coverage of the Downing Street Memos, noting that: "A wide range of critics, including the ombudsmen of the NYT and WP, says the press bobbled the ball on the Downing Street Memo. The memo may not be the slam-dunk about the Bush administration fixing intelligence that its supporters believe—the British author cites no specifics as proof—but it was a newsworthy and provocative development, as the press is belatedly realizing."

"Now the press is taking notice because they couldn't ignore it anymore."

I like to think that every little bit helps. I don't believe there will be any "slam-dunks" in the left's efforts to get Bush out of office or onto the hot seat... but a process of attrition can work well. If the press will get off its collective duff and get involved in the chipping away of the Bush veneer, I think things will get very interesting for this administration. Even the best teflon coatings will get worn with heavy use.

9 Comments:

Blogger Lizzy said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you, Mr. Conyers. You have done a great service to our nation. I can't wait to see what happens next.

1:11 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

I listened to the hearings on KPFA. To paraphrase a Christmas carol, it's beginning to look a lot like Watergate. There's gonna be a lot more squirming from the White House, and a lot more phony hot-button issues streaming out of Rove's office.

4:27 PM  
Blogger Unadulterated Underdog said...

Amen! If we keep at it, we might at least nail Bush to reality board for his lies. If we accomplish bringing the truth out, at least his lies will do less damage from then on.

5:56 PM  
Blogger 1138 said...

His day in court is coming...
I don't want this one skipping out with a resignation and a pardon.
And we need to take the whole bunch, no VP's juming ahead in line.

9:48 PM  
Blogger Phil said...

Rep. Conyers and Moveon are useless, and have no impact on anything the administration does. If you want to move the administration, you need to get R's involved.

9:55 AM  
Blogger Snave said...

"Rep. Conyers and Moveon are useless, and have no impact on anything the administration does. If you want to move the administration, you need to get R's involved."

I think that's a good point in principle, particularly the second sentence. I have a few differences with Phil's comment, and some comments of my own, of course!

Firstly, I think the statement "Rep. Conyers and Moveon are useless, and have no impact on anything the administration does", without being prefaced by an "I think" or "I believe" indicates that what was said is an absolute truth or well-known fact. This portrays the person saying it as an authority. This is one of the many fallacies AM talkers (from both parties) use in their attempt to get listeners to bypass critical thinking skills en route to adopting the speaker's beliefs as their own. A good book which contains information about argumental fallacies is "The Bum's Rush" by Donald Trent Jacobs.

If Republican voters are paying attention, I think they might notice their leaders are doing things that just might not sit too well with them. If they are people who value truth and honesty, I think they will gradually rid their party of the neoconservatives and theocrats who seem to have gained undue influence on the direction of our country's social, economic and foreign policies. Moderation is what I believe will win out in the end, and I like to believe Republican voters are by-and-large smart enough to know this. However, more overtures to such GOP voters from the Democratic leadership would indeed be helpful.

Republicans are welcome to come over to the Democrat side of things. I would expect that if things continue as they are with the Bush administration, more and more of them will see the light during the next few years, and that they will either register as Independents or vote for moderate candidates. It may even include the need to cross party lines and vote for the other party's candidate; the survival of their party may depend on it as the Bush administration becomes a GOP albatross, IMHO. When Republican voters see that it's time to rogue the rye from the wheatfield, I believe they will grab their burlap bags and go to it!

I also think that saying moveon.org and Rep. Conyers are "useless" represent ways of denying the impact of the internet in starting grassroots movements the conflict with GOP interests, and denying the ability of such entities to reach out to people... and possibly of denying that the Bush administration basically just does what it pleases. The word "useless" might fly on a more conservative weblog, but here it suggests to me a lack of understanding of the other guy's point. For me, Rep. Conyers and Moveon.org represent more ways in which my voice, and the voices of others who share my views, or who have conflicting views with the Bush administration, might be heard.

When in dissent, I think being heard is what it's all about.

11:46 AM  
Blogger Phil said...

Snave,

First, I consider (and thought it was understood) that everything on these pages are the current opinions of the writer. Given that few people actually are in the 'know', the rest of us speak from our own opinion. There are several things I can speak on with authority. Generally, they are boring and not listed on these sites.

My statement that Conyers and Moveon are useless has more to do with their lack of access to the administration to promote policy change. Conyer could lead the whole Moveon org into a mass protest, and it would effect Bush. He knows that they hate him, and realizes that there is nothing he could do to change that. They are outside the political equation. I wasn't attempting to deny their efforts to rally the troups, raise money, etc. But they are both far left. The people they speak to aren't going to even consider Bush anyway. This is truly the preacher speaking to the choir.

If you want to bring fast change in US policy, you need key R's, moderate D's, and the money people to get to Bush and apply pressure. That is how you can bring about a change in policy.

9:32 PM  
Blogger Snave said...

Phil, you're right in saying that access is important. You do make a good point there! Also, don't sell yourself short when it comes to knowing about things that tend to get discussed on these pages. AND, I appreciate your coming to my weblog!

Would Bush listen if a massive internet petition effort similar to that of Moveon.org's was being led by someone like Sen. Hagel, or Sen. McCain, i.e. someone from his own party? I doubt Bush would listen to Arlen Specter or Jim Jeffords. I also doubt he would listen to politicians from the Democratic party (except Zell Miller!)

10:40 PM  
Blogger Phil said...

I think it has already started. Grumblings will cause the administration to look into withdrawl.

8:14 PM  

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