However, I did read parts of the presidents speech. I find it incredible that the president can stand in front of the "country" and imply that the war was going well until the Sunni's bombed the mosque in Samarra:
In Iraq, Al Qaida and other Sunni extremists blew up one of the most sacred places in Shia Islam: the Golden Mosque of Samarra. This atrocity, directed at a Muslim house of prayer, was designed to provoke retaliation from Iraqi Shia. And it succeeded.
Radical Shia elements, some of whom receive support from Iran, formed death squads.
The result was a tragic escalation of sectarian rage and reprisal that continues to this day.
Violence has been escalating, continually, since 2003... not just since 2005.
As Senator Webb pointed out in his response, the president
...disregarded warnings from the national security adviser during the first Gulf War, the chief of staff of the army, two former commanding generals of the Central Command, whose jurisdiction includes Iraq, the director of operations on the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and many, many others with great integrity and long experience in national security affairs. We are now, as a nation, held hostage to the predictable — and predicted — disarray that has followed.
Are there any conservatives out there who want to hold the president and this administration RESPONSIBLE for their errors? Regardless of ideology -- these people are incompetent...
I thought the Senators comments regarding the economy were right on the mark: the measure of a societies success isn't measured at the top -- by stock market numbers or GDP, but in the lot of the average citizen. We are quickly moving to a classed society: not unlike that which existed during the time of the Robber-Barrons. Most Republicans simply do not see a role for government in the regulation of free markets. But anyone who studies the theory -- and observes them in practice -- knows that such system (based on greed) - results in the accumulation of power and wealth: which is inexorably used to reinforce itself at the cost of others.
Government is the only check we have against this result. Government MUST ensure that labor/work is rewarded. In a society with cheap and easily available energy and raw materials, it is far to easy for the few to garner the lions share of the wealth while those who work to provide that wealth are left behind.
Maybe we'll start measuring the success of our society by looking at those who have the least, as opposed to those who have the most.