Patterico's Pontifications


Patterico Outside the Tent, Part 2

Filed under: Current Events,Dog Trainer,General,Sheehan — Patterico @ 11:37 am

I can now reveal the nature of the project that has kept blogging light this week. My second “Outside the Tent” piece will run in the Sunday L.A. Times tomorrow. (My first “Outside the Tent” piece argued that the paper should run corrections of substantial errors in a more prominent space. It ran on February 13, and can still be accessed at this link.)

Tomorrow’s piece discusses the paper’s coverage of Cindy Sheehan’s recent protest in Crawford. I don’t write the headlines, but it looks like they have decided to call it “Peacenik Paper Fawns Over Anti-War Mom.” It will appear in the “Current” section.

I took great care to keep the focus on the paper’s coverage; it’s not intended to be a screed against Sheehan personally. I point out some of the paper’s distortions and omissions in covering Sheehan, and take a swipe at Jonathan Chait and Margaret Carlson in the process.

I’ll link it in the morning; let me know what you think.

UPDATE: Welcome to Hugh Hewitt readers, and thanks to Hugh for the link. I hope new visitors will bookmark my site and come back often. Also, stay tuned for more on Pejman’s project; I have a feeling you’ll be hearing more about that very soon.

What’s Worse: the Silliness or the Deceit?

Filed under: Dog Trainer,Sheehan,War — Patterico @ 11:31 am

Yesterday, a friend asked me: “Who is this Rosa Brooks person, and why does she have a column in the L.A. Times?” After reading Brooks’s inane and deceptive column today, I am wondering the same thing.

The piece is titled “She’s paid for her access in blood.” Its theme is summed up in the first two paragraghs:

LAST WEEK, the Bush motorcade sped by Cindy Sheehan on the way to a Republican National Committee fundraiser, literally leaving her and her fellow protesters in the Crawford dust. Sheehan, whose soldier son was killed in Iraq, was left wanly waving her hand-lettered sign: “Why do you make time for donors and not for me?”

She should have known that this is how it works in America. Only those who fork over the big bucks can count on getting an invitation to President Bush’s Texas ranch. That’s why Republican donors struggle to raise the $200,000 needed to gain the coveted RNC honorific of “Ranger.”

Brooks never mentions that Sheehan has met with Bush before. Instead, the column implies (but never explicitly says) that Bush 1) never meets with non-donors, and 2) has never met with Cindy Sheehan. Proceeding on those two false premises, Brooks makes an incoherent argument that Cindy Sheehan should put a monetary value on her son’s life, and call it a contribution, since that’s the only thing that will get Bush to meet with her:

Trying to place a monetary value on her son’s lost life is an appalling calculation for any mother to have to make. But with an eternally vacationing president who can’t be bothered to meet with non-donors, it’s the only language he’ll understand.

Actually, Ms. Brooks, Newsweek reports that “Bush has met with about 900 family members of some 270 soldiers killed in Iraq or Afghanistan.”

Brooks’s column ends with this:

So what do you say, Republican National Committee? Sheehan donated her son’s life — and his lifetime earnings potential — to Bush, and he squandered both. She’s not asking for a refund, or a “Ranger” badge, or a favor for her oil company, just a meeting. Isn’t she entitled to a few minutes of her president’s time?

No, she’s not entitled to it, Ms. Brooks — but she has already gotten it. Are you the only person in the country who hadn’t heard that? Or did you just not feel like mentioning it, because doing so would destroy the premise of your utterly silly piece?

What a total waste of valuable op-ed space.

P.S. Also (as commenters have pointed out), while Ms. Sheehan has certainly suffered a loss with the death of her son, it twists the English language beyond recognition to suggest that she “donated” her son’s life. What drivel.

Power Line on Cindy Sheehan

Filed under: Current Events,Sheehan,War — Patterico @ 12:05 am

Power Line’s John Hinderaker says of Cindy Sheehan:

As time goes by, and people learn more about Sheehan–e.g., her anti-Americanism, and the fact that she was so fervently anti-war BEFORE her son enlisted that she vowed to run him down with her car if he joined up–her ratings will no doubt slide further.

Does anyone have any idea what he’s talking about? I have e-mailed him to ask . . .

UPDATE: Thanks to commenter Jeff, who points to this link, which quotes Cindy Sheehan as follows:

I begged Casey not to go. I told him I would take him to Canada. I told him I would run over him with a car, anything to get him not to go to that immoral war. And he said, “Mom, I wish I didn’t have to, but I have to go.”

I think it’s a mistake for Hinderaker to highlight this quote, which — though it does express her view that the war is immoral — would nevertheless arouse only sympathy among most Americans. It sounds like a mom terrified for her son’s life.

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