Thursday, June 22, 2006


Introductions are always a proper way to begin one's contributions to a blog. Many may be familiar with my opinions from comments here at TPS. I'm a conservative who has left the Republican party as a homebase. And I'm not willing to do it half-heartedly either. I'm not willing to say, "I'm no fan of the Republicans, but they're still better than the alternative." No, I'm going to make sure that my exit is just as pronounced as the actions have been of those who have forced out people like me from the GOP.

And no issue typifies my frustration with the administration more than the War in Iraq. I don't mean for this to be a war post, but I'll share my own background because I think it's likely true for a majority of the average American public. I was horrified by 9/11. In its wake I willingly made an undocumented leap-of-faith connecting the evil of al Queda and the evil of Saddam Hussein. I listened to Colin Powell's case-for-war to the U.N. and trembled at the mysterious satellite photos. I put my faith in George Bush, Don Rumsfeld, and the intelligence operations of the US military and supported our looming invasion of Iraq. I had full confidence that our troops would win the war, we'd set up a new government, and then make Iraq a beacon of democracy for the Middle East. And the best part was that Paul Wolfowitz told us that this war would pay for itself within six months. The prospects of stable oil prices completely sealed the deal for me. The war happened, I cheered the triumphant stories of the embedded reporters, and willingly believed Bush's declaration of 'Mission Accomplished' meant just that.

But our "accomplished" mission still continues. And over the past 3 years, I've come to regret my support of the war. I guess I have no choice but to sympathize with guys like Murtha and even Kerry. I've come to believe that there was no legitimate connection between the secular Hussein and the Islamist al Queda movement. I've come to believe that Saddam didn't possess the feared WMD's and there's no evidence that as of 2003 he was actively stockpiling and mobilizing them for current use. I've come to believe that Iraq is a war we cannot win, that militant Shiites will eventually tie that country's fate to their more-ominous comrades in Iran, and that our continuing presence in Iraq will only result in more American casualties. Sadly, it seems actually to be spurring the recruitment efforts of anti-American terrorists like al Queda - the preventing of which is the very reason pro-war advocates still cling to the fighting in Iraq.

If I were in charge, I'd fire myself. My judgment about the case for war in Iraq has proven to be crap. But I'm not the president and my judgment was actually the very same as his. So who's the one who should be fired afterall?

I'll leave it at that. I'm sure we'll revisit the issue of Iraq many times in the coming months. The exchange of ideas is always healthy. That's one thing I've always loved about this blog. If nothing else, true debate shows we all do care about the fate of the American boys over there. My father-in-law served a 12 month tour in Iraq and is now home safely. I have no doubt that his experience influences my own opinion.

Moving right along, I'm equally disappointment with the Republican Congress' abandonment of the principles of the 'Contract With America.' Hastert and Frist have allowed Democrats to make a credible case that they're the party of fiscal responsibility. On social issues, I lean strongly Republican. I'm a former prosecutor who is dismayed at how soft many American jurisdictions treat crime. I get fired up on hot button issues like illegal immigration and same-sex marriage. And I'm pro-life and believe Bush's outstanding judicial nominations will go down as the high water mark of his presidency. I'm sure we'll explore many of these issues too in future posts.

So that's me. I enjoy being controversial and have a tendency to put my foot in my mouth. But I rarely take offense at attacks thrown my way since I don't take myself very seriously. So thanks again to my co-bloggers for adding me to the crew and let's have some fun!


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