Whenever I say something really pissed-off and critical about George W. Bush on this site, you can practically set your watch by what happens next: First some conservative or conservative leaner will leave an indignant comment about how hateful and divisive I'm being, issuing knee-jerk condemnations of every single thing Bush does. Then I'll respond with a comment asking why it's any better to just go right along with every single thing Bush does. Then they'll respond with an indignant comment about "Hey, I don't agree with every single thing Bush does, I'm perfectly willing to disagree with him when he or his administration does something wrong," blah blah blah.
Oh, you are? Great for you and your independent, free-thinking little selves. So how come I don't ever freaking hear it?
You think our leaders in Washington haven't committed enough resources to the war effort? Hey, I got an idea: Speak up about it. Don't leave it to liberals like me, because the Washington Kool Kids will just roll their eyes and dismiss the criticism as coming from just another wild-eyed liberal kook. Your small-government conservative sensibilities are offended by the way Republicans in Congress are spending money? Fucking tell them so! 'Cause they're sure not listening to me -- now that Bush has won re-election with that massive, throbbing 51% majority, his guys on the Hill are thinking "mandate" and that means they can totally ignore the 49% that I'm in. You want them to spend less money? Wow, I want them to spend less money! Great, we're in complete agreement! So howsabout you proud, independent, free-thinking, non-Kool-Aid-drinking conservatives get off your asses and give me a hand here? I've been bitching about this for years, but for some reason I haven't heard a peep out of you.
When Dick Durbin decried the way human beings were being treated at Gitmo, you got all huffy and demanded to know what I thought of Durbin's comments. Like I was personally responsible for what he said. Well, guess what? Yesterday Karl Rove said it was the "motive" of Durbin, and indeed all liberals, to put our troops' lives in danger. Karl Rove, the president's right-hand man, said liberals -- a group that happens to include yours truly -- want our troops to die! Is that OK with you? Not shocking enough to be worth your precious time talking about it?
You get mad at me when I criticize the president, saying I'm being divisive and contributing to the growing rancor and hatred in this country. OK, so what's Rove doing? He just wrote off 49% of the country as people who want to see our troops get killed. You grumble at me for being divisive; you got any of that tsk-tsking left over for Karl?
It's like this, free-thinking conservatives: You talk a good game about being open-minded and being willing to criticize your own guys, but I have yet to see the rubber meet the road. You say it's a bad thing when liberals like me say stuff that might be inflammatory or divisive, but when a conservative does it, it's like you've all decided to wash your hair at the exact same time -- not a word out of any of you. Not in a column, not on TV, not on a blog, not on a hog, not in a box, not with a fox. Silence. You could hear a pin drop on a pool table.
So it's time to either shit or get off the pot. Demonstrate some of this independence, show me some example of this wellspring of free thought that allows you to be so critical of your own side, or I'm going to have to assume one of two things: 1) You're not actually as independent as you claim to be, or 2) you are pretty independent but you're a total pussy.
But being the nice guy that I am, I'll let you pick which one. That's my own personal olive branch I'm extending to you. 'Cause the last thing I want to be is divisive.