It's a bittersweet day for me, as I just found out that Bill Kristol has written his final column for the New York Times. It's sweet in that the country will not be exposed to his illogical arguments and one-sided "conservatives are always right" attitude, but also bitter because who will I trash on Mondays now? In order to give him the proper send-off, I'm going to rip his final column a new one.
To begin with, Kristol states that January 20, 2009 marked the "end of a conservative era." He cited Gingrich as the carrier of the torch for this "era" during the Clinton years, negating 8 years of a liberal president with a family-values conservative who cheated on his second wife while at the same time spearheading the impeachment of Bill Clinton for cheating on his (talk about sticking to your principles!). But if Gingrich is a continuance of Bush I and keeps the '90s conservative in Kristol's view, does Tip O'Neil get any recognition as a continuance of Carter and having a liberal effect in the '80s (with extra points for not being an adulterer)?
But there are more Kristol gems: "Over the next three decades, it was modern conservatism, led at the crucial moment by Ronald Reagan, that assumed the task of defending liberty with strength and confidence." Are we forgetting the Soviet-Afghan War and the rise of the Taliban and bin Laden with CIA money? Are we forgetting the Contras in Nicaragua and the money from Iranian arms sales (and as we know, Kristol hates Iran)? Or how Reagan increased government spending, yet is a hero to conservatives? Come on.
Then Kristol pulls the "if you disagree with me (i.e. "conservatism") then you are un-American" when he says: "Obama’s speech was unabashedly pro-American and implicitly conservative." So being pro-American is implying that one is really being conservative? One cannot love his or her country without subscribing to the Republican viewpoint? If I say we should not have sacrificed over 4,000 American servicemen and women in Iraq for a war based on false pretenses, does that make me un-American? If I say we should follow the Constitution - the very basis of this great nation - by not torturing or holding people in prisons without the right to a trial does that make me un-American? I thought we were done with this passive agressive name-calling, but leave it to Kristol to bring us right back down to the gutter.
So long, Bill Kristol. I wish we could say we hardley knew ye, but you made sure we heard you. While you may make outlandish statements like "Conservatives of the Reagan-Bush-Gingrich-Bush years have a fair amount to be proud of," without using any evidence to back it up, in your head you're always right and anyone else who says otherwise is just a liberal. Now that McCain lost to Obama and your post as Republican Party cheerleader will do little to help your stature as being part of the ruling party, you can act like the sore loser at the playground, take your ball and go home. Peace.
Photo - Bill Kristol (New York Times)