April 29, 2004


The Australian should pay closer attention to former Reagan staffer Doug Bandow’s opinion pieces. He keeps making mistakes. Here’s Doug’s latest:

The US really doesn't need a "deputy sheriff", as Howard reportedly once put it.

No, he didn’t. Who will be the first opinionista to include our deputy sheriff status, Bush’s plastic turkey, and the Pentagon’s report on global warming in the one article?

(Via Alex Robson)

Posted by Tim Blair at April 29, 2004 12:45 PM

Well heck, if they manage that, they ought to go for the Bob Beamon-like record and include the Jenin massacre, the post-ABM Treaty arms race (remember that one?), the 600 "mostly civilian" dead in Fallujah, and the Bremer "mistake" of disbanding an Iraqi army that had prudently already self-disbanded. But I think including the Reichstag fire would be a bit ostentatious.

Posted by: IceCold at April 29, 2004 at 12:59 PM

Who will include all three?

My money is on the New York Times.

But then again, I'm mean-spirited.

Peace and Freedom for an Independant Iraq!

Posted by: Zayphar at April 29, 2004 at 01:18 PM

That was a real profound and substantive critique, Tim. Boy am I bowled over. Makes me wonder why Reagan saw fit to appoint Bandow as adviser rather than you.

Posted by: Jason Soon at April 29, 2004 at 02:00 PM

Wow Jason, what you have written is even more profound than Tim's. You are my hero - no longer shall I worship at the feet of Blair the false idol.

All hail Jason Soon, blogging god!!

Posted by: Russell at April 29, 2004 at 02:15 PM

Jason is merely the latest in a long line of people who want to characterise the things that sites like this one do as mere nit picking or childish semantics.
In some cases, pointing out a typo or incorrect date, whilst showing sloppy editing at a news source, would be unproductive.
But in this case, Bandow has incorrectly attributed (though he has a bet each way with 'reportedly') a divisive quote to a head of state.
Previously he has said that the Bali bombing was a result of Australia'a role in Iraq - even though the bombing happened *beforehand*. That is two glaring errors published in a major newspaper. You think things like that should just be allowed to slide through Jason?

Posted by: attila at April 29, 2004 at 02:28 PM

Well, obviously, Attila, mistakes which perpetuate Lefty myths should not only be allowed to slide through but should be encouraged. However else can they expect to regain their rightful place as masters of those less intelligent if they cannot lie to the masses with impunity?

Posted by: JorgXMcKie at April 29, 2004 at 03:00 PM

The comment was made to Howard who did not disagree thus it would be silly to say he didn't agree with the remark

Posted by: Homer Paxton at April 29, 2004 at 03:00 PM

Ah, good. I agree with Homer (D'oh!). Anything unsaid by anyone should be taken as proof that they agree with what they didn't say.

Posted by: JorgXMcKie at April 29, 2004 at 03:01 PM

Doug Bandow's position is that other nations ought to set American foreign policy. He describes terrorism as a tool of weak nations, and that the US ought not to provoke attacks against itself by taking positions that are contrary to the interests of terror-sponsoring countries. The problem with this approach is that it is an invitation for our enemies to attack us by sponsoring terror groups in order to separate us from our allies.

Doug Bandow's approach is pretty radical - the American way has always been to respect those who respect us and punish those who attack us. He is proposing that the US abandon its allies to appease its enemies. It is the Cato Institute's (Bandow's think tank) penny-wise, pound-foolish approach that has led to China's ever-expanding push into the South China Sea (through the abandonment of the Filipino bases) and the extinction of the only Christian government in the Arab world in Lebanon. The Cato Institute is misnamed - it wants to bury its head in the sand about the danger from abroad, whereas Cato the Elder pushed for the destruction of Rome's enemies, the most famous example of which was the leveling of Carthage.

Posted by: Zhang Fei at April 29, 2004 at 03:35 PM

Zhang is right - Doug Bandow (And I have met the man in person.) is a believer in the Fortress America concept where the US stays out of the world and the world will hopefully stay out of the US...Which would be interesting trying to apply to the Islamists.

I like Bandow on some issues, like environmentalism, where is far more lucid than the watermelons which run the Lenin's birthday celebration, but on others...I prefer to engage and destroy the murderous bastards before they start landing on American beaches (And exploding WMDs in American cities.).

It should be noted that the Cato Institute is a libertarian - in all respects - think tank that has come up with some astonishing boneheaded positions in its history. In 1991, they actually released a paper arguing that it was cheaper letting Saddam keep Kuwait than the US going in and kicking the bastard out. Presumeably the isolationists will tell us how giving an unrepentant Saddam (With a full strength military, active WMD program, and boundless ambitions and no restraint.) the ability to control the most vital natural resource in the modern world is a GOOD thing...


Posted by: C.T, at April 29, 2004 at 03:44 PM

"Who will be the first opinionista to include our deputy sheriff status, Bush’s plastic turkey, and the Pentagon’s report on global warming in the one article?"

This is a start. I'd like to see these in one article.

However, there are 'reporters' out there who could do much better. Take all the above PLUS the 'Jenin Massacre', 9/11 caused by the US, the 'warning' all Jews received so they would not be in the towers that morning, and the 'mass persecution of Muslims' in the US that took place right after 9/11,.

I'd probably keep an article like that and read it when I needed a laugh.

Posted by: Chris Josephson at April 29, 2004 at 10:15 PM

Stinkarrrpp! Lies-rrrrrrkkkk... Awk! Awka awk.

[The Parrotese-English Translator has been turned off by the Management.]

Posted by: Miranda Divide at May 1, 2004 at 12:25 PM

So John Howard never called Australia a "deputy sheriff." He just characterized Australia as America's deputy in the region, while Bush called Australia a sheriff.

Easy how these tragic misunderstandings happen, isn't it? Lazy people thought the Howard doctrine had something to do with being a "deputy sheriff", when a close reading of the text shows Australia was merely viewed as a deputy and a sheriff.

Posted by: Jason Stokes at May 1, 2004 at 02:29 PM