Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Bipartisanship Ain't What It Used to Be: F-35 & V-22 Edition

“The word bipartisan means some larger-than-usual deception is being carried out”
In this case, it includes the article 'covering' the claim.

I had a bifurcated response to Steve Trimble’s latest post “The vast bipartisan conspiracy against F-35 & V-22

My first response focused on the use of “Bipartisan”:
In my head I replayed Inigo Montoya: ” You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”

Then I remembered a favorite George Carlin quote: “The word bipartisan means some larger-than-usual deception is being carried out”

After I really studied Trimble's post, I decided the latter response was most applicable.

Within his post Trimble iterates (Warning: English-English spelling ahead):
“Our review of eight budget reduction proposals by a hodge-podge of centrist, leftist and libertarian think tanks reveals a startling insight: All of them agree that two military aircraft programmes should be terminated or scaled back, and all of them agree those two programmes should be the BellBoeing V-22 and the Lockheed Martin F-35.”

My next thought was someone needed to tell Mr. Trimble that the opposite of ‘leftist’ isn’t ‘libertarian’. Do you see what is missing from that “centrist, leftist and libertarian think tanks” list? That’s right: “Conservative”. If we are talking spectrum of priorities on ‘defense thinking’ conservative is to ‘approve’ as leftist is to ‘disapprove’ as to libertarian is to ‘ambivalent’. [A ‘centrist’ BTW is just voting ‘present’.]

I won’t pick the nit that ‘bipartisan’ involves ‘two parties’, and only bing it up to prevent any grammar police showing up in the comments and counting coup.

ONLY after leading us down a fabulous ( in the 3rd and 4th definition of the word) definition of ‘bipartisan’ at the end of his post does Mr. Trimble mention the ‘on the other hand’:  
There remain some -- such as the Heritage Foundation, American Enterprise Institute and House budget committee chairman Rep Paul Ryan -- who oppose any significant budget cutbacks beyond those already identified in former Secretary of Defense Bob Gates',,,

Ah! The ubiquitous ‘some’ of the more conservative bent finally appear.

Now…..About the ‘substance’ of that list of ‘bipartisan’ groups:

1. RE: Fiscal Commission co-chairs?
AKA “Democrat Tool and a RINO Fool.” Those findings weren’t exactly embraced ‘bilaterally’ were they? Wasn’t Paul Ryan on the Commission as well? I’d say he is a lot more representative of the ‘conservative’ half of the ‘bipartisanship’ here.

2. RE: Debt Reduction Task Force plan?
The one from the so-called “Bipartisan Policy Center” founded in 2007 “by former Senate Majority Leaders Howard Baker, Tom Daschle, Bob Dole and George Mitchell”?
Yeah THAT Tom Daschle and THAT George “I’ve been trying to slash the military for decades” Mitchell. Call this RINOs and Radicals Part II

3. RE: Galston-MacGuineas Plan
Well this is one I’d never heard about, but as I suspected, it is just repackaging the ‘same-o sam-o’ ideas from the ‘same-o same-o’ people.

MacGuineas is an apparatchik of the New America Foundation, a leftard organization masquerading as ‘moderate’. It is where ‘Progressives’ go when they don’t want to be seen as such. Note that at the NAF link we find a story where George Mitchell above used a BS poll to try to pressure Israel into giving up even more concessions that they were willing to make in the 'peace' talks with Palestinians.  

Galston is now a Brookings (left-leaning and used to be farther left) Institutition operator, currently working on “designing a new social contract and the implications of political polarization” and (of course) is also a Clintonista.

4. RE: Center for American Progress?
Oh C’mon! they’re a front for the Democratic Party

5. RE: Cato Institute.
Libertarian. They like defense as long as it is cheap or free and runs towards believing America should have a passive voice in the world. If they were stronger on defense, I could be a Libertarian, but if they were, then they would be good Conservatives.

6. RE: Roosevelt Institute.
Carrying forward the legacy, values, and spirit of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt . I especially 'enjoyed' their ‘campus network’ page: “A national student initiative that engages new generations in a unique form of progressive activism that empower young people as leaders and promotes their ideas for change”.
Oooooo ‘big’ ideas. Ask them about The Forgotten Man.
sheeesh - frickin'  'retreads'.

7. RE: Economic Policy Institute
Another Leftard organization posing as ‘non-partisan’. Ask George Soros how much they cost.

8. RE: Sustainable Defense Task Force
OK, this one comes from the Project For Defense Alternatives, which given their record, translates into Project For Alternatives TO Defense. Who is the ‘task force’ (besides the basically one-half of a two-man PDA shop of Carl Conetta) ?

Carl Conetta, Project on Defense Alternatives
Benjamin H Friedman, Cato Institute
William D Hartung, New America Foundation
Christopher Hellman, National Priorities Project
Heather Hurlburt, National Security Network
Charles Knight, Project on Defense Alternatives
Lawrence J Korb, Center for American Progress
Paul Kawika Martin, Peace Action
Laicie Olson, Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation
Prasannan Parthasarathi, Boston College
Miriam Pemberton, Institute for Policy Studies
Laura Peterson, Taxpayers for Common Sense
Christopher Preble, Cato Institute
Winslow Wheeler, Center for Defense Information

Recognize any organizations we have already covered? It is easier to list the ones we haven’t. How about that eternal weapons program denouncer Winslow Wheeler? And I just KNOW I want ‘Peace Action’ on the front lines of defense recapitalization (Not).

PS. If that d***ed 'captcha' feature of Flight Global worked with modern security software, I would have commented at the post.


The DEW Line said...

Sorry you're having trouble with the captcha functionality. We are trying to sort that out, but it's taken a bit longer than we expected.

Fair point, by the way, about the misuse of bi-partisan. I should have used 'multi-partisan' instead. But it's true that even Ryan endorsed the Gates efficiencies initiative, which included scaling back the F-35 in the short-term. Neither the Heritage or AEI plans specifically mention the F-35, as far as I know.

SMSgt Mac said...

Hey, I don't blame you for the 'captcha' thing. I just moved heaven and earth trying to get it to work before I gave up and posted here late last night. That has got to seriously cut in on your traffic count.

RE: Paul Ryan, Gates' 'Efficiency Plan', and the F-35. That was about buying breathing space for the program from a technical maturity perspective (reducing technical risk), but it will have worse cost impacts if the DoD does not move on putting the 'curve' in 'production curve'

RE: Multi-Partisan. I like it. But the spectrum of partisanship in that list is still far left to slightly left, with Cato in the 'middle' minding its own business. Gives one the kind of perspective akin to that of a driver closing his right eye and never turning his head towards the closed eye as he speeds down the road.

Thanks for the good link to the V-22 'wrote the book' story tonight BTW.