I don’t think I’ve ever written “pork” and “surrender” in the same sentence, but needs must. The necessity in this case is to bring increased attention to the really vile bill the greedy surrender monkeys in the House have cobbled together in an effort to position themselves to win the 2008 election. Never mind that it hands out taxpayer money like candy to special interest groups; never mind that it cuts the rug out from the American troops; never mind that it will create a giant vacuum in Iraq, while having given terrorists a year and a half to plan precisely how to fill that vacuum. Never mind all of that: it will make a small group of special interest farmers and a loud group of moonbats happy, with the hope that the latter group holds the key to White House victory.
Here are the facts that support my opining, facts so bad that even the Washington Post cries foul:
TODAY THE House of Representatives is due to vote on a bill that would grant $25 million to spinach farmers in California. The legislation would also appropriate $75 million for peanut storage in Georgia and $15 million to protect Louisiana rice fields from saltwater. More substantially, there is $120 million for shrimp and menhaden fishermen, $250 million for milk subsidies, $500 million for wildfire suppression and $1.3 billion to build levees in New Orleans.
Altogether the House Democratic leadership has come up with more than $20 billion in new spending, much of it wasteful subsidies to agriculture or pork barrel projects aimed at individual members of Congress. At the tail of all of this logrolling and political bribery lies this stinger: Representatives who support the bill — for whatever reason — will be voting to require that all U.S. combat troops leave Iraq by August 2008, regardless of what happens during the next 17 months or whether U.S. commanders believe a pullout at that moment protects or endangers U.S. national security, not to mention the thousands of American trainers and Special Forces troops who would remain behind.
The Democrats claim to have a mandate from voters to reverse the Bush administration’s policy in Iraq. Yet the leadership is ready to piece together the votes necessary to force a fateful turn in the war by using tactics usually dedicated to highway bills or the Army Corps of Engineers budget. The legislation pays more heed to a handful of peanut farmers than to the 24 million Iraqis who are living through a maelstrom initiated by the United States, the outcome of which could shape the future of the Middle East for decades.
While the Post expresses appropriate shock at what the Democrats are doing, the Captain understands what’s driving them. First, he notes that it was only with the pork that Pelosi was able to cobble together enough votes to pass the bill. In other words, he says, the legislation is not the product of a November 2006 mandate. If it had been, the Democrats would just have voted for withdrawal. Instead, it shows a party responding to its fringe, and having to bribe its centrist members to join. That is sordid to begin with, not to mention strangely cynical.
The second thing the Captain notes is the timetable. I mean, “August” as a deadline date is kind of a weird one when you think about it. It’s not the beginning or end of a year, it’s not the beginning or end of a fiscal cycle, it doesn’t reflect quarterly patterns. In most places, it’s just a hot, slow month. But in 2008, it’s actually a very special month:
The timing of the withdrawal seems rather suspect, too. What conditions led them to select August 31, 2008? Did they carefully review the current operations in Iraq and determine when they could reasonably be completed? No. They selected that date because it comes about ten weeks before the Presidential election — an election they hope to win by giving their activist base the surrender they have demanded for years.
That’s really the kicker, isn’t it: The Dems are robbing the taxpayers, disarming the troops and abandoning the Iraqi people so as to win an election. It’s all about politics. None of it is about principles. Again, I find a disturbing cynicism at work here in Obama’s party.
Because he does it so well, I’ll leave to the Captain the last words on this subject:
This supplemental is a despicable document on many levels. It conducts payoffs for Congressmen to endorse the surrender of the United States to insurgents and terrorists in a region where we have done that too often already. If we want to beat the terrorists, we have to fight them, not run away because we get bored or tired of the expense. They already rely on that reaction from us, thanks to a long and bipartisan history of them, and we do not need to add more ignominy to that record.
UPDATE: Apparently cynicism was the reason for this despicable display of greed, cowardice and opportunism. As James Taranto points out, Pelosi’s main motive, or the one she used to sell the bill to her fellow Congress-rats, was headlines:
That Times piece has a revealing explanation of Democratic motives:
In conversations with dozens of lawmakers in recent weeks, often in her Capitol suite or in a late-night telephone call, Ms. Pelosi argued aggressively for the bill, even as she empathized with their anguish over how to vote. But in the end, participants said, her argument often boiled down to this: Did they want a headline saying, “Congress is standing up to President Bush,” or “Congress gives President Bush free rein?”
Mission accomplished, Nancy: See the top of this item. But this tells you all you need to know about Democratic “leadership” in Congress. It doesn’t matter what’s good for the country or whether America defeats its foreign enemies, only that the headlines make the Dems look tough on their domestic adversaries.