Ron Radosh on The American Conservative.

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Oct. 5 2002 1:20 AM

Thug Life

The Fray dissects The American Conservative.

(Continued from Page 7)

Gore's call for a slowdown in the debate and vote is not unintentionally meant to inconvenience incumbent Democrats but intentionally meant to help them … If Democratic anti-war incumbents are forced to stand and make a protracted fight in Washington debates, they cannot stump in their home districts ...

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One of us … one of us: Joe thinks Gore's "hastily written pronouncements" as Klein called them, make the ex-Veep "just like the writers and fraysters at Slate." "Come on Gore, join the dark side." 12:50 p.m.

Iraqathon: From yesterday's cover, you can see that for awhile Slate will be all-Iraq all-the-time (almost). How to Fray? Let me offer some suggestions:

If you want to participate in a discussion and not simply shout from the laptops, you might want to avoid any Fray for an article that is currently linked to the msn.com homepage. The msn.com link encourages a lot of posts, but it creates a shoot-and-scoot effect.

If you want to read some of the better posts, but don't have time to page through them, you can start with the posts I append below the article (although I may be playing catchup for awhile) or you can select "View Editor's Picks" once you have entered The Fray.

Finally, you can check back here. While everyone knows that there are at least two sides to the invasion debate, and a slew of reasons for any position, everyone may not know what the terms of the conversation are. I will try to draw attention to them.

Both sides now: Michael Kinsley's Readme piece started off Slate's great Iraq debate. In The Readme Fray, responses are running the gamut. Zathras's pro-invasion response begins by cogently arguing that not knowing enough is an inveterate problem:

Crucial information is always unavailable to citizens before war begins. It is usually unavailable to governments also, or is not distinguished from less important information before war starts, or is not utilized because no one in a position of responsibility knows where to look for it. This has been the case in every war the United States has ever fought.

This is not a failure of democracy; this is life …

Adam Masin points to another inveterate problem: acting without legitimacy:

[H]e will go to war without the support of half of his country and almost all of the rest of the world. Say what you will about the merits of a Iraq war, Bush's stance does not put him in very good company amongst history's world leaders who have taken similar action.

And for readers who tire of measured political discourse, you can always look to posts by doodahman for a more cantankerous exchange (such as this):