Patterico's Pontifications


Pelosi: Republicans “Like the War” . . . L.A. Times: Huh?

Filed under: Dog Trainer,General,War — Patterico @ 10:16 pm

Yesterday there were plenty of stories about Nancy Pelosi’s absurd comment that Republicans “like” the war in Iraq. For example, this AP story said:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi lashed out at Republicans on Thursday, saying they want the Iraq war to drag on and are ignoring the public’s priorities.

“They like this war. They want this war to continue,” Pelosi, D-Calif., told reporters. She expressed frustration over Republicans’ ability to force majority Democrats to yield ground on taxes, spending, energy, war spending and other matters.

Now that’s a story, right? The Speaker of the House of Representatives says that Republicans like the war.

Not that Republicans think it’s necessary. Republicans like it.

Not that Republicans want to win. Republicans want it to continue.

It was an obvious gaffe, and she apparently realized it:

Asked to clarify her remarks, Pelosi backed off a bit.

“I shouldn’t say they like the war,” she said. “They support the war, the course of action that the president is on.”

“And that was a revelation to me,” she said, “because I thought the American people’s voices were so — and still are — so strong in this regard.”

I’m sure you’ll be surprised that I can’t find a word in the Los Angeles Times about it.


29 Responses to “Pelosi: Republicans “Like the War” . . . L.A. Times: Huh?”

  1. I don’t really think anything the LAT does (not do) surprises me anymore Pat. Of course without your blog I wouldn’t care what the LAT did either :)

    OT: LSU Shooting

    Verlin Martin (899dce)

  2. OT….well, the wheels are comming off hillys campaign, this is great news.

    james conrad (7cd809)

  3. That was the item that got viral from the press conference, but I had turned up the Cspan 3 stream to make sure I caught the start of the dem debate and got the whole press conference she did.

    Her explanation of and review of their agenda since taking over the majority was an episode in tap dancing to say the least.

    daytrader (ea6549)

  4. I feel sorry for the Democratic leadership, trapped between the crazy demands of the far left and the increasing reality that the Surge is working. Textbook case in how to squander political capital in completely useless activities.

    JayHub (262161)

  5. as a conservative democrat, i’m not overly impressed with nancy pelosi’s performance as speaker. what has she actually accomplished? her district was drawn as a lifetime sinecure, to which she can always be reelected as long as her vital signs don’t go south.

    individual republicans on the street, by and large, don’t like the war any more than i do, however, the corporations to which the republican party is so beholden love the war for all the business it brings them. war is good for business, and there are plenty of republicans in corporate boardrooms who exalt a good business environment over the lives of american soldiers.

    assistant devil's advocate (6dee72)

  6. Can anyone ever take the L.A. Slimes serious anymore its as bad as the New York Slimes and WASHINGTON COMPOST

    krazy kagu (6b296a)

  7. ada – That’s a pretty hackneyed description of the relationship of corporations and the republican party. Are all corporations beholden to the republican party or are there some beholden to the democrat party? Can you provide a list of each or is it just a bland Chomskyite generalization?

    The service sector of the economy is generally beholden to the democrats isn’t it ada?

    daleyrocks (906622)

  8. ADA, tell me, which corporations would rather have a war, with the chaotic business environment that it brings, rather than victory? Which industries? War is lousy for businesses, even defense contractors.

    Civilis (b2219f)

  9. War is lousy for businesses, even defense contractors.

    Halliburton stock, about 4x pre-war price.Exxon Mobil, more than 2xCare to speculate on the bottom line at Blackwater (privately owned by GOP contributor)?

    As it happens, I don’t agree with ADA that we should look to money first. We should look to the fact the Bush Remnant loves war, and more particularly torture, restriction of traditional liberties like habeas and search warrants, and so on as fulfillment of their immoral and/or childish 007 and 24 fantasies. Pelosi’s remark wpolitically tactless and completely accurate.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (a8643a)

  10. After Taliban, Saddam, Iranian crazies, etc have had decades to rape and torture innocent people, yeah, I like seeing war imposed on them. And yeah, if you make awesome weapons or other war-necessities, you profit when people need that stuff.

    Does that mean Pelosi was right, and I live war, in and of itself? You would have to be a fool to believe that. Sadly, some people are psychologically invested in their political party, and aren’t willing to think rationally. They reject any information that they don’t accept, and they accept any insinuation as fact if it supports their view. Such people are exactly what’s wrong with America. Go to hell, Lazarus. Bush was all about diplomacy on 9/10/01. He changes, along with many people, to realize war was the only path we had left to us.

    Just think how great the world would be now if Carter had reacted with war. How many millions of lives would have been saved? Instead, crazy morons will insist you want to be Jack Bauer if you support the war on the rapists and murderers of Islamo-fascism. Yeah right, that’s the most likely answer. Couldn’t be that they are scared! No chance they are just trying to stop bad guys!

    No doubt, Bush has made many mistakes and some profiteer on war. But people who think “the republicans like war” is completely accurate are sad people who refuse to look at the world and other people with an open mind. To them, the Democrats=good, and that’s the end of any discussion. On either side of the aisle, such hatred and irrationality is sick.

    Dustin (29d3e6)

  11. I watched Joe Biden do a dance in front of the media on the Capitol steps after a vote to ally ourselves with bin Laden to kill Christians in the Balkans. It was the kind of dance you see on game shows after someone wins a car. That video has to survive somewhere.

    j curtis (8bcca6)

  12. Bush was all about diplomacy on 9/10/01. He changes, along with many people, to realize war was the only path we had left to us.

    Any war?

    I’d rather he stayed the course at Tora Bora and forgot Colin Powell’s dazzling powerpoint charts showing illustrations of Iraq’s mobile wagons of death.

    But we’re in this now and the surge was the correct option.

    steve (73d783)

  13. Halliburton stock, about 4x pre-war price.Exxon Mobil, more than 2xCare to speculate on the bottom line at Blackwater (privately owned by GOP contributor)?

    You can make the claim that stock price has benefited from the US resuming hostilities with Iraq in 2003, although one wonders if that stock increase for Exxon and Halliburton has to do with the increasing demand for oil in general. That’s a good point for a debate. But it isn’t what you are arguing.

    The question on the table is is it better for US corporations for the war in Iraq to continue or for the US to win. If you think that corporations or Republicans have a reason or desire to keep the war going, let us know, and make that argument.

    It certainly looks as if some Democrats and Progressives have a reason to keep the war from being won to gain an electoral advantage in 2008.

    Did FDR love war? Did he love torture and restricting the bill of rights? Or was he, like the US government today, faced with tough choices in the midst of a difficult threat to national security?

    Civilis (61fadb)

  14. ADA #5,

    The opinions of the Republicans on your street are vastly different from the opinions of Republicans on my street. I doubt either of us can extrapolate to national opinions based on that limited sample.

    DRJ (09f144)

  15. DRJ – Based on the comments, I don’t think ada knows any republicans.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  16. AJL.
    Please state how much of Exxon’s gross revenues are derived from DoD contracts exclusive of energy supplies; ditto for Halliburton (energy supplies that DoD uses whether or not there is a fight on).

    KBR had extensive contracts with both DoD and State, but was spun-off from Halliburton because they were a drain on the company’s primary profit stream: Oil Field Services. In other words, KBR (war) was not as profitable for Halliburton as civilian energy service contracts.

    If you and ada were dropped into “Waldon Pond”, you would be lost without the conflict that you so desperately need to function.

    Another Drew (a28ef4)

  17. ADA and AJL – Are you sure it’s the republican corporate lobby that controls government decsion making in this country? I’ve seen other arguments that it was the jooos and the Israel lobby, along with liberal media.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  18. No one hates war more than peacemakers. Those who say that peacemakers LIKE war are so unbalanced as to be unqualified to make any decisions with regards to war or the funding of it.

    Nancy Pelosi is the superlative of TWIT.

    USMC E 2/9
    LAPD 1980-2000

    Clark Baker (68ef14)

  19. Halliburton stock, about 4x pre-war price.Exxon Mobil, more than 2x

    XOM isn’t much of a shocker: the DJIA is roughly 2x what it was in the beginning of March, 2003. So, XOM has performed with the market.

    Halliburton has outperformed, but there are many other defense contractors out there.

    If you’re going to argue that the purpose of the war was to enrich contractors, you’ve got a very long row to hoe.

    Steverino (af57bc)

  20. You don’t see any connection between the profitability of all those oil industry contracts and the war?


    Andrew J. Lazarus (a8643a)

  21. I don’t see any increased profit for oil industry companies for the war continuing vs the war ending with a US victory. Why don’t you spell out your logic for us?

    If the war ends with some degree of victory for the US, the Republicans remarkably increase the odds of their success in November 2008, which means a more business-friendly administration in the White House. As such, any Republican business owner should be hoping for a US victory. As the war drags on, even if the war is progressing successfully, the odds of Democratic success in 2008 increase, which means a more lawyer and Democratic special interest friendly administration in the White House.

    It is debatable whether the chaos in the oil market generated by Iraq benefits the US oil industry more than it hurts it. A US victory in Iraq, however, would seriously benefit the defense industry by showing that US technology is sufficient to counter insurgent-based warfare.

    Civilis (11c3d6)

  22. lazarus, isn’t Iraq producing more oil? And it’s fungible stuff, so the fact is that oil is cheaper now than it would be had we not gone to war.

    If all we wanted was oil, why not just lift the freaking embargo and leave Saddam in place? We wanted more than oil. With Iraqi freedom, we would begin to win a war of ideas against some crazy nuts over in the middle east. It’s the only way.

    Dustin (9e390b)

  23. You don’t see any connection between the profitability of all those oil industry contracts and the war?

    Yes, because I can look past the end of my nose. Oil industry profitability has MUCH more to do with worldwide demand for oil and its supply than the war.

    If you think otherwise, please show how China and India wouldn’t be buying as much oil absent the GWOT.

    Steverino (af57bc)

  24. And it’s fungible stuff, so the fact is that oil is cheaper now than it would be had we not gone to war.

    Look up “risk premium”.

    Oil industry profitability has MUCH more to do with worldwide demand for oil and its supply than the war.

    More, yes; much more, no.

    Andrew J. Lazarus (050f82)

  25. Hey guys, don’t try agruing with people like AJL and others.
    Their minds are make up, please don’t confuse them with facts.

    “Facts to a Liberal, are like Kryptonite to SuperMan.”…Larry Elder

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  26. AJL does remind me of seeing Chuck Schumer railing against oil company profitability and the burden high gas prices put created for consumers on a talk show a couple of years ago. When the host informed Chuck that the state tax levy per gallon of gasoline, particularly in New York, was typically a multiple of the gas company profit margin per gallon, I think that has been the only time I have ever seen Chuckles literally at a loss for words. Clearly he had no idea of the economics of the business and was just demagogeuing big business out of habit, much as AJL is here.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  27. More, yes; much more, no.

    Care to make a little wager? Show how the profitability is linked to the war. And then I’ll show how it’s linked to world demand.

    Remember, this is for oil companies only.

    Crude oil prices

    This link shows crude oil prices from 1998 on. Notice that the price from March 2003 to January 2004 is pretty constant. In fact, it’s lower in the latter months of 2003 than the earlier months.

    The risk premium would have been highest in the early stages of the war, and prices in 2003 would have been higher than those in 2004.

    But something has happened since 2003: global demand has soared.

    Now, you need to show how the price of oil would be lower absent the war.

    XOM has only tracked the DJIA since the start of the war. If it’s profitable because of the war, then why are so many other companies equally profitable despite having nothing to do with the war?

    Steverino (af57bc)

  28. The performance of XOM is almost three times as good as the Dow since the start of the war.

    Look what happened to oil prices when Cheney started his war-on-Iran rhetoric, and what happened when the NIE rained on his parade.

    There are a number of reasons for the rise in the price of oil, including denomination in the weakening dollar. It remains a fact that companies related either to the war directly (Halliburton) or to the oil industry have been doing very, very well. Case in point:

    At least 90 percent of [Blackwater’s] revenue comes from government contracts, two-thirds of which are no-bid contracts.

    On the original topic, the affection of today’s Young Conservative Blowhards for war can be found in Jonah Goldberg’s hilariously-titled speech “Give War a Chance” (h/t conservative and former Administration supporter Cunning Realist).

    Andrew J. Lazarus (050f82)

  29. AJL – You are correct that there are numerous factors you which determine the price of oil. You left out the demand side of the equation, which has been steadily rising, particularly from Asia. You also left out political uncertainty in both Venezuela and Nigeria, which has thrown jitters into the market. Rising oil prices do generally benefit oil companies, not just U.S. oil companies. Companies with defense related contracts may benefit when those contracts are expanded, provided the contracts are profitable.

    Making the case that the Iraq war was entered into for oil or to benefit a cabal of Bush or Cheney friends, however, is pure nutball conspiracy thinking. If you can lay out any evidence, lay it out.

    daleyrocks (906622)

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