Nancy Pelosi deserves credit for her strong condemnation of Hugo Chavez:
“Hugo Chavez fancies himself a modern day Simon Bolivar but all he is an everyday thug,” House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi said at a news conference, referring to Chavez’ comments in a U.N. General Assembly speech on Wednesday.Amen. Even if Pelosi is saying this only for political reasons (it’s a rare opportunity to tack right on foreign policy without offending a significant portion of the Democratic base), it’s still a very good thing that she said it. When the world sees headlines like “Leading Bush critic at home calls Chavez a ‘thug’” it’s a very healthy thing.
“Hugo Chavez abused the privilege that he had, speaking at the United Nations,” said Pelosi, a frequent Bush critic. “He demeaned himself and he demeaned Venezuela.”
I wish I could offer the same praise to Charlie Rangel, but I can’t shake the feeling that there’s something a little off in his condemnation of Chavez. His press release says that “demeaning public attack against him is viewed by Republicans and Democrats, and all Americans, as an attack on all of us.” That’s pretty obviously not true, isn’t it? And look at what he said at his press conference (video):
I just want to make it abundantly clear to Hugo Chavez or any other president, do not come to the United States and think because we have problems with our president that any foreigner can come to our country and not think that Americans do not feel offended when you offend our Chief of State.The garbled syntax makes it hard to tell, but it sounds as if Rangel is not only making the perfectly cogent point that what may be fair comment by some excited blogger is inappropriate coming from a visiting head of government, but actually going further and saying that the offensiveness of a criticism turns on the critic’s nationality. If that’s what he means, it’s just crude nativism; the implication is that what’s okay for Rangel to say is not okay for a non-citizen like (for example) Andrew Sullivan to say. That strikes me as a non-patriot’s bad impression of patriotism.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?