Desperate Houseflies: The Magazine

Feel free to pull out your trusty fly swatter and comment on what is posted here, realizing that this odd collection of writers may prove as difficult to kill as houseflies and are presumably just as pesky. “Desperate Houseflies” is a magazine that intends to publish weekly articles on subjects such as politics, literature, history, sports, photography, religion, and no telling what else. We’ll see what happens.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Goose and Gander

There's no doubt that the Iraq War is much on everyone's mind, these days. The death, the destruction, the drain on national coffers. The problem is, or has been, that there simply isn't any solution to it that is politically viable for both the Democrats in Congress and the Republican president.

I have a solution.

Mine is a compromise solution. It detracts nothing from the president's claims for executive power; in fact, it relies on them. It brings the war to an end without signaling surrender, and without calling into question the decision to start it in the first place. We'll still suffer the monetary cost of the war, and we'll still be on thin ice for a while in world opinion, but at least we'll have a just, honorable, and lasting peace in Iraq.

My solution is simple: President Bush should commute the Iraq War.

Oh, sure, some people will object, but, hey, commutations are well within the power of the presidency. I think we can all agree with Tony Snow on that. Plus, a commutation would respect the decision of the politicians who brought us the war in the first place. It would just lighten the load a little. After all, 4 years does seem excessive. I mean, rilly, who goes into a land war in Asia and expects it to take 4 years?

Besides, there is no underlying reason for staying. It was all cooked up. Political. You know: partisan. Iraq didn't really commit a cri- er, casus bellus. That is, they didn't really have weapons of mass destruction; Saddam just lied about having them. So really, the whole thing is kinda phony to start with.

Yep. All in all, a commutation seems like the most just outcome. And did I mention it's well within the president's power? 'Cause it is. Like, waaaaay within.


Blogger Al Sturgeon said...

Okay, JU, help out a slow learner like me. What does it mean to "commute" the war?

8:34 AM  
Blogger juvenal_urbino said...

Oh, you know. Just call it off. Like Scooter Libby's prison sentence.

The whole post is just poking fun at the logic of that decision vs. the logic of continuing the war. The facts of the two "cases" are remarkably similar, but, surprise surprise, lead to completely different policy outcomes.

2:48 PM  
Blogger Al Sturgeon said...


Sometimes I'm a LOT slow. Like today.

That makes a lot more sense than having our soldiers drive back and forth to Iraq today. That kind of commute. :-)

7:09 PM  
Blogger Michael Lasley said...


I'm pretty sure everything is within the power of the presidency. And listening to McCain talk today....I only caught part of the little speech, but he said something about how he didn't like that people were questioning the authority of the office of the presidency. Which I thought was interesting only because the president has been able to do pretty much whatever he wants the last few years. And one of the people wanting that particular job comes out and says that there should be no questioning of the authority of the president.

7:46 PM  
Blogger juvenal_urbino said...

Yeah, but commutation isn't running. Just like it isn't a pardon. It's the perfect solution.

I haven't seen anything about McCain's speech, but, bless his heart, he's a drowning 70-y.o. man: he's flailing his crooked little arms for anything at all to hang on to. He's desperately wanted to be president for a coupla decades, and now his last chance -- what was supposed to be his best chance -- is going down like the Titanic; out of money, down in the polls, laying off campaign staff, watching staff he wanted to keep flee like rats.

He's frustrated. He's angry. He's panicked. He's bitter. Between now and the final gasp of his final campaign, he really could say almost anything. And with his temper, I expect he will.

All that said, yes, it is comical that he's worried about supposed encroachments on presidential power when presidential power has seen unprecedented expansion over the past 6 yrs. and every poll on just about every issue shows the country thinks the president has run amok.

12:26 PM  

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