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September 16, 2006

Comments

Zachary Drake

Amen. I'm glad to hear a nationally prominent politician saying something like this.

Tried to leave a trackback, but it didn't work, so I'll link to my post here

Greg Kuperberg

Not many politicians other than a Republican mayor of New York City could get away with a statement like that, even though it's just common sense.

(But it does not mean that Bloomberg opposes the war on terrorism, only that he opposes hysteria.)

Arlen

I understand that you're talking about supporting him in a general election where there are fewer choices, but I can't understand why you'd support him at all.

Sure, he's good on several issues, but when it comes down to it, he's still a pro-Lieberman anti-labor billionaire. He's shown he doesn't care much for dissent (which is hypocritical, considering he dissents from his own party), as evidenced by the extremely harsh anti-First-Amendment tactics he ordered during the RNC convention in his city in 2004. He also is a very strong supporter of Israel's tactics, and was a huge supporter of the recent invasion of Lebanon, saying that Israel was merely protecting itself.

I'd suggest strongly that you read up on the connections between Bloomberg, Lieberman, the DLC and AIPAC. Check out this piece written by Matt Stoller of MyDD (also Jewish).

Would you support Bloomberg in a race against Feingold or Gore for instance? Both of which are against the President's wars and pro-equal marriage rights?

Minipundit
Sure, he's good on several issues, but when it comes down to it, he's still a pro-Lieberman anti-labor billionaire.
So what if he supports Lieberman? It's not that big an issue. And it's important to separate the NYC union scene and the national one. If you're in the dockworkers union, you're guaranteed full salary and benefits for the rest of your life - regardless of your competence, time working, etc. Unions in NYC have made so much progress that they've grown destructive.
He 's shown he doesn't care much for dissent (which is hypocritical, considering he dissents from his own party), as evidenced by the extremely harsh anti-First-Amendment tactics he ordered during the RNC convention in his city in 2004.
I didn't follow that story too closely, but Menino used similar tactics in Boston, and there's been a history of controlling protests at conventions for both parties.
He also is a very strong supporter of Israel's tactics, and was a huge supporter of the recent invasion of Lebanon, saying that Israel was merely protecting itself.
Find a viable Democratic presidential candidate who doesn't. And, no, Feingold isn't viable, and he did support it.
Would you support Bloomberg in a race against Feingold or Gore for instance?
Against Feingold, certainly. There are a few issues that are dealbreakers for me, and trade is one of them. Feingold opposed NAFTA. Ergo, he's out. Gore, potentially, but what are the chances he'd run? Plus, he has spoken about terrorism like it's an actual threat, and supported attacking Iraq early on, which many forget.
Both of which are against the Presiden'ts war and pro-equal marriage rights?
Feingold is pro-marriage rights, but other than that that sentence's just plain wrong, Arlen. Gore does not support gay marriage; he supported DOMA and has only made feints of an evolution. Also, supports the war on terror and flip-flopped on Iraq. Feingold also supports the war on terror, with a fervor that's horrifying.
Arlen

All right.

First, you're pro-NAFTA, WTO "free trade"? I am quite surprised.

On the issue of Lieberman, you're right that's hardly of significance. But on a more general basis, it's all that Lieberman represents: a merger between the two parties in some sort of magical centerist land of wonderfulness where everybody can find a way to get along and agree on milk toast policies. If FDR had waited for every Republican Senator to vote for Social Security in 1935, my grandparents would be eating catfood for dinner.

On the topic of equal marriage rights (which I believe is the best messaging-wise way of putting it), I think you dismissed Gore surprisingly quickly. Sure, he supported the Defense of Marriage Act, ten years ago. But he's spoken much differently lately- as the piece you linked to mentioned.

On the issue of dissent, justifying, comparing and rationalizing is just evading the point. What was done was done.

With regard to Gore on Iraq- he believed the same stuff that 75% of America believed (you and me not included, but we can't afford to be elitists). However: he did have the courage to speak out against the war even before it started, warning that it would draw resources away from Afghanistan (and ultimately OBL got away at Tora Bora, as you already know). And he did reverse his position earlier than the vast majority of the public did and has been vocal since.

Yeah, I disagree with Feingold on the 34-day war, but I would argue that he isn't as bad on that as Bloomberg is. As for the war on terror, to steal a page from your book, name me a viable Democrat that doesn't support it.

Besides, Bloomberg has supported the war in Iraq, and the war on terror.

P.S.- Did you just accuse somebody of flip-flopping on Iraq?

Minipundit

First, you're pro-NAFTA, WTO "free trade"? I am quite surprised.
Everyone has heterodox viewpoints on some things.

But on a more general basis, it's all that Lieberman represents: a merger between the two parties in some sort of magical centerist land of wonderfulness where everybody can find a way to get along and agree on milk toast policies.
Well, one thing we should agree on is that it's spelled "milquetoast" :) Secondly, I think there's something to be said for bipartisanship; it helps to have a less bitter political atmosphere. And some of the "milquetoast" policies from the DLC that Clinton passed in the '90s - welfare reform, EITC - were really, really good.

Sure, he supported the Defense of Marriage Act, ten years ago. But he's spoken much differently lately- as the piece you linked to mentioned.
Sure, he opposed gays when it counted. But he speaks nicely to them now that he's in position to do jack shit! I remember listening to him in late 2002 on Fresh Air talking about some book he wrote with Tipper on marriage. He waffled so badly on the issue I wanted to toss him some syrup.

With regard to Gore on Iraq- he believed the same stuff that 75% of America believed (you and me not included, but we can't afford to be elitists).
Even if Saddam was supporting al-Qaeda and on his way to a nuke, there was no reason to intervene militarily.

On the issue of dissent, justifying, comparing and rationalizing is just evading the point. What was done was done.
He had what he thought was a tough reelection battle coming. He needed national Republican support to win. Also, comparing is appropriate. I assume you think Tom Menino's measures against protesters at the DNC rules him out for higher office?

However: he did have the courage to speak out against the war even before it started, warning that it would draw resources away from Afghanistan (and ultimately OBL got away at Tora Bora, as you already know). And he did reverse his position earlier than the vast majority of the public did and has been vocal since.
He still flip-flopped, and he still supports the war on terror.

Yeah, I disagree with Feingold on the 34-day war, but I would argue that he isn't as bad on that as Bloomberg is. As for the war on terror, to steal a page from your book, name me a viable Democrat that doesn't support it.
Not a viable Democrat, but Bloomberg?

Bloomberg has supported the war in Iraq, and the war on terror.
Not the war on terror (read the above-linked article). And again, he had to curry favor with Bush for political reasons.

Did you just accuse somebody of flip-flopping on Iraq?
Yes, I did. Because he did.

Arlen

Haha, well I had originally written "soggy toast" and then went back and changed it to "milk toast." Didn't quite have the same ring to it.

As for NAFTA... I honestly don't understand why you support it. I'd be interested to hear why-- maybe we could take this conversation to email (I've a hard time checking this comments page). Where do you stand on CAFTA?

I have no interest in Tom Menino, he's said he has no interest in higher office and has not been vocal on national issues at all as far as I know. Just because one Mayor does something bad (stiffling freedom of speech using "zones" where dissent was permitted) doesn't make it okay for another Mayor to do the same thing. I am saying that it is unsavory period, for both sides. It sounds like you're saying that it's okay since both parties use it. Maybe I'm too much of an idealist.

As for Iraq, is it okay for this liberal Republican mayor to support the War in Iraq for political reasons, but not for Gore to initially support it and then come out strongly against it? Even while Bloomberg still hasn't come out against it? If Bloomberg were to change his position now, would you call him a flip-flopper? What about John Murtha-- is he a flip-flopper and therefore unworthy of any support?

Seriously, I'd be super-happy to switch over to email to discuss this further. remove office at gmail. No dots, underscores or spaces (duh).

Greg Kuperberg

As for NAFTA... I honestly don't understand why you support it.

I can't speak for Dylan, but I can tell you my reasons. The anti-NAFTA argument is that exploitation of Mexicans is such an injustice that we should instead fire them from their American jobs. In my view, that is the height of fake idealism. I completely agree that it is important to talk about labor rights and working conditions and so on. Even so, economic integration with the West is the only real hope for the developing world.

If it were up to me, I would go further than NAFTA, I would just throw open the border between the US and Mexico.

h keller

I suggest Mike sticks to NY City Politics till the Middle East is at peace. His buddy Joe is so pro Israel he is blind to the injustices in the region.

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