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  • Lance Mannion
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When I saw the opening, I thought, "he's been reading them rant about poor Cindy Sheehan" well before I reached your nut graf. Well, Lance, you're a gentleman. Those who have your dander up would no doubt go on at great length about feminism eroding respect. Maybe they'd stand up when a woman arrived at the table. But for Cindy Sheehan, they have nothing but venom and amazing clairvoyance regarding what her dead son would have wanted.

They have a right to say she's grandstanding and disagree with her protest. But can't they give her even the small concession of dignified disagreement? Can they not correct her, but still stand up when a grieving mother is present?

jeff Boatright

Excellent analogy and summation.

Anne Laurie

This post (no, essay) is so well-thought-out and constructed that it's left me speechless... no small achievement! Thanks, Lance!

res publica

"We know what they are, and there's no arguing with them."

Amen, Brother Lance. One variety of liberal response of which I've grown particularly tired is the "look at this fresh Republican hypocrisy I've exposed!" maneuver. Republicans are hypocrites?!? Well no shit. It's more trenchant to point out that their professed positions are batshit-crazy. I do not admire people who consistently live out and apply their crazy ideas. At this point, the GOP is pretty open about its own corruption and intellectual bankruptcy. Hypocrisy is sort of beside the point when confronted with such vast, brazen error.


I have to second Anne there. It left me commentless, when I read it earlier.

Despair slowly overtakes Samuel as he laments reading Lance before posting about Cindy Sheehan. His thoughts are irreparably influenced by this post for his post to be anything but a derivative or worse an imitation of this great piece.

"The idea being that George Bush does no wrong." I was naive enough to think the USA was better than that. My state in India has a tradition of electing movie stars as chief minsters (the US equivalent, being governor) and there is intense hero worship over there.Loyalty is to the leader and I doubt many people even know what their ideology is.

I was arguing with my father about how such shit could not happen in the USA (this was during Clinton's first term, when I was a teen, convinced that I was correct in a way only teens can be) when my father gently pointed out that Reagan was an actor himself and that he was not even the biggest star in his prime.

I must say that it came as a rude shock. I had thought people here were better than that and that image did not count here. I was not here during Reagan's presidency, so I can only wonder if he inspired such devotion.

Going by the adulation Reagan received after his death, I am sure Bush is going to be beatified as a statesman who brought democracy to the Mid East.

Agi T. Prop

Lance, you are brilliant.

Exiled in NJ

It takes my breath away, and I am not talking about your wonderful piece, but the sheer effrontery of these Eddie Slovik's who believe in their 'cause' down to the last young American killed, as long as it isn't one of them. I'm off my wavelength; comparing them with the WWII private is an insult to Slovik's memory. Where is Joseph Welch when we really need him?

Night Bird


Loyalty to orckish evil mindedness is what the neo-cons view in that mirror.

And Agi beat me to it - Brilliant!


Wow, I'm stunned. So right, so right. After reading the daily trolling at my blog, I'm scared about how right you are.



Anne Laurie

Orwellian language watch: The CBS Nightly News appended a few seconds on Cindy Sheehan as part of their regular "Iraq Still Totally SNAFU'ed" feature. During those seconds, they delicately referred to Bush as "headquartering in Crawford" for the next few weeks. Is this the new Oval Office euphemism? Heck, Bush's "Rust Never Sleeps But I Get Five Weeks' Summer Vacation Tour" has been a gift to the tv comedians every August, and it never bothered his handlers before! Maybe it's not so easy to shrug off the jokes when the approval rating are bumping south almost as fast as gas prices are bumping north?

mac macgillicuddy

I like the post, Lance. But I just have to add one thing, because of a conversation I had the other day with a friend over lunch.

His son is in Iraq. His daughter was there, too, although thankfully she is now home and, besides being mad as hell, is in one piece.

My friend made this observation regarding the hero tripe. He said his daughter and his son are not heros. They are his children and, except inasmuch as any father sees his kids as "heros," he does not want them portrayed that way -- especially not when hero becomes a euphemism, which he says he thinks it has become.

We owe it to ourselves to be careful of using the word hero the way the media is using it and the way the political rhetoric uses it.

The people who "gave their lives for their country," my friend points out, did not GIVE their lives. They were killed. Pure and simple. They had their lives taken from them. They are not heros. They are dead.

This is from my friend, whose children have served in Iraq -- one of whom is in the Coast Guard and certainly never imagined he'd find himself guarding that coast.

Just thought it was worth passing this on. As long as war is glorified by calling everyone who goes there a hero, we will be vulnerable to bamboozling by this White House and others to come.

Incidentally, reports that mothers of dead soldiers are flying into Crawford from all over the country. If this is true, it just might smoke George out. How can he ignore such a committee of heros?


Truely an outstanding piece of writing, Lance. Your analogies put the picture in my mind of Hindrocket the Orc...drooling and oozing his stenchified drivel. Well done.

I wish they could be ignored as well. Unfortunately when they're ignored..they become like the Swift Boaters, an echo chamber whose voice grows as long as it isn't pushed back against.

mac macgillicuddy

Here is a relevant link.

Chuck, Left Of Left

Wow! Now that was very well said- telling it like it is personified!

harry near indy

well said, lance. congratulations of that post and several others you've written since you came back from vacation.

I guess the vacation did your writing a world of good.


Thanks, folks. But the only really brilliant thing I did for this post was read all the great stuff being written about Cindy Sheehan on other people's blogs. The Heretik, Shakespeare's Sister and Blue Girl, besides good stuff of their own, have the links.


You've probably heard me mention the boys' Uncle Merlin. His regular FedEx guy came into the shop the other day. His daughter's on her to Mosul to drive a tanker truck. Another way of saying she's going to be driving a very big target. FedEx guy does not want a heroine for a daughter. He wants just a regular daughter, here, home, now.

Carla, you're right, there's no ignoring them. But they are maddening to argue with. For one thing, you can't get them to address any points you raise. They fall back on repeating their original idea, the one you've just shot full of holes, except that maybe they'll rephrase it or add swear words. There's a guy showed up in the comments on this post at the American Street. What's one of my points? The narcissism of identifying themselves with the dead heroes in order to make themselves feel tough. What's he lead with? "We" need to get our hands dirty. "We" need to stand tall. We, we, we. I don't know, maybe he was posting from Basra and just forgot to mention it.

Tilli (Mojave Desert)

Thanks, Lance.


Lance- great post!

mac macgillicuddy: right on about the (over)use of "hero." And also about your use of it at the end of your comment.

I don't have the stomach to notice what the orcs are doing, so I didn't even realize they were spewing this sort of stuff at a parent of a fallen soldier. What's happened to us? Has even a member of the SS ever done something like that?

Charles Watkins

Hey, quit sliming us Orcs. At least we don't lie about why we go to war! -Muglug

Marvin Drake`

As a proud WWII Infantry Repalacement Rifleman sent to Europe in the spring of 1945, I know something of what went on at that time. Eddie's execution was the army's most shameful official act, ever. As reprehensible as Eddie's dumb scheme was, those who were truly responsible for what was done to him did worse. Poor Eddie did not appreciate the adage we all heard in basic training, "the army may not be able to make you do something, but it can sure make you sorry you didn't". I am not against the death penalty, and there were many who deserved it so much more than Eddie did. He only was able to threaten desertion, they had him all the time. The mind set of the army brass at that time was such that the life of a lowly Infantry Private was of no more consequence than that of a bug smashed on the sidewalk, and woe to those who dared to challenge them. His execution was nothing more than a ritualized human sacrifice to the swagger-stick carrying gods from West Point. Marvin Drake, T/3 (Staff Sgt Tech) Infantry, US Army, 1943-46.

fred preuss

I thought it was creepy when people tried to get us to call her "Mother Sheehan".

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