Tiger by the Tail

That’s the situation in Iraq, where there are no good options.

And that’s the position of the GOP relative to its bloodthirsty, reality-averse, strongman-craving base. Movement conservatives with some tendency towards intellectual honesty are starting to wake up to this fact.

I retain a good deal of respect for Ramesh Ponnuru. This despite his protestations that his effort to market to the base, the book “Party of Death: The Democrats [et al, probably the MSM and colleges and Earl Warren or something],” in no way insinuated that the Democrats are the Party of Death. Today, he writes:

Romney on Iraq [Ramesh Ponnuru]

I find the reaction to his remarks last night a little dismaying. Do conservatives really want to tie themselves to the position that the surge is not only working, but that there can be no doubt on the score and that anyone who acknowledges the existence of doubt is a heretic? As for Romney’s looking forward to a possible troop drawdown—something Bush has also done!—what’s our bottom line there? Do we want troops there forever? Is that what conservatives should want Republicans to campaign on next year?

Well, that sounds suspiciously like logic. And the base doesn’t take too well to that kind of thing. May want to keep your head down, there, Mr. Ponnuru.

UPDATE: See also.  The problem is that the GOP base has been so conditioned to support everything the Dear Leader does that it’s going to have a heck of a time climbing down.  Admitting error is for wimps, Democrats are wimps and Republicans are tough, therefore stay in Iraq forever to root out WMD, build democracy, fight al Qaeda… look tough.  And if Romney doesn’t play at being tough, then he has no chance to win in the extreme and delusional party that is today’s GOP.

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