We got an indication of how deeply President Barack Obama has stepped in it Wednesday when New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd compared him unfavorably to George W. Bush. Any day now Hell will freeze over (global warming alarmists be warned).Thousands of American troops (and countless Iraqi citizens) dead due one (republican) president's lies and this (democratic) president's defense of religious freedom is the greatest unforced error in American politcs.
When Mr. Obama jumped unbidden into the controversy over the proposed mosque and community center two blocks from where the World Trade Center once stood, he committed, arguably, the greatest unforced error in the history of our politics.
Yea, I know. I don't understand that either.
But let's take a look at what Maureen Dowd actually said. Dowd takes Obama to task for "skittering back" from a stand on first principle and then "tak[ing] it back the next day."
Which, of course, isn't exactly true. As I wrote here, when you look at what the president actually said at the iftar and then compare that to what he said the next day, there's little, if any, conflict.
It's only when you project "endorsement" onto the first statement does the second look like a backtrack - something Dowd and a large chunk of the so-called liberal media does.
And something Jack actually seems to recognize:
But at a White House dinner to celebrate the Muslim feast of iftar, Mr. Obama gave remarks which both supporters and opponents of the ground zero mosque interpreted as a ringing endorsement of the project.He doesn't say Obama endorsed. He says Obama's words were "interpreted" as an endorsement. When that turned out to be less than accurate (and promting the "clarification" the next day) suddenly we see the president "skittering" back. It's all a media construct.
The president's speech nationalized the issue, and turned "a brushfire into a prairie fire," said Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y.
The next day, after a torrent of criticism, Mr. Obama "clarified" his remarks. He was only defending the right of its backers to build the mosque, not expressing an opinion on the wisdom of doing so. [emphasis added.]
Jack completely steps in it with this attempted rewrite of history:
But the right to build the mosque was not in controversy...Really? So Jack must've missed that part of the Dowd column when she wrote :
Yet here is Gingrich attempting to out-Palin Palin on Fox News: “Nazis don’t have the right to put up a sign next to the Holocaust Museum in Washington.” There is no more demagogic analogy than that.I'll help Jack out with this one. When Gingrich compares the Park51 folks to Nazis, he's saying that they have is no right to build the community center. Did Jack miss that part? Here's Politico on Gingrich's remarks:
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich on Monday compared the mosque planned to go up blocks away from ground zero in New York to Nazis protesting next to the Holocaust museum.Yea, I guess Jack missed this - how else could he assert that the right to build the mosque is not a controversy?
Gingrich highlighted the fact that New York Democratic Gov. David Paterson and numerous others have proposed alternative locations for the mosque in arguing that the leaders of the cultural center are “radical Islamists” who want to prove that “they can build a mosque next to a place where 3,000 Americans were killed by Islamists.”
“That's why they won't accept any other offer,” he said during an interview on Fox News's "Fox & Friends."
Gingrich then declared that if the mosque is indeed being built as a symbol, which its leaders have repeatedly denied, New York authorities have every right to prevent it from being built.
Like a lot of other wingnuts, he's pretending conservatives never ever attacked religious freedom.
It's all a diversion. And this is a big enough diversion that the fabric of most of the rest of the column is left in tatters.