The Law of Opposites, Golf and Governance

The more they try to get it right, the more they get it wrong.  Anyone who plays golf knows the rule of opposites.  If you try to hit the ball to the right, it goes to the left, hit to the left, it goes right.  If you try to hit UP on the ball it goes down, hit DOWN on the ball and it goes UP!  This all defies conventional wisdom and is completely wrong in the annals of common sense.

Conservative ideology is filled with conventional wisdom, common sense, and the famous “gut feeling.”  

From Dan Froomkin:

“Asked on NBC’s ‘Meet the Press’ whether he thought Iran was trying to develop a nuclear weapon, Hayden said, ‘Yes,’ adding that his assessment was not based on ‘court-of-law stuff. . . . This is Mike Hayden looking at the body of evidence.’

“He said his conviction stemmed largely from Iran’s willingness to endure international sanctions rather than comply with demands for nuclear inspections and abandon its efforts to develop technologies that can produce fissile material.

“‘Why would the Iranians be willing to pay the international tariff they appear willing to pay for what they’re doing now if they did not have, at a minimum . . . the desire to keep the option open to develop a nuclear weapon and, perhaps even more so, that they’ve already decided to do that?’ he said.”

Conclusion by rhetorical question. When have we heard that before?

You couldn’t try and get it that wrong IF YOU TRIED!  

From Dana Milbank via Dan Froomkin also in the WAPO on Monday.

Dana Milbank writes in The Washington Post about how Kevin Rudd is one of the many foreign leaders who owe a lot to the president. Rudd unseated Bush favorite Prime Minister John Howard last fall.

Writes Milbank: “Bush may be a loathed figure in much of the world, but one group owes him a debt of gratitude: the many opposition leaders who came to power after Bush-friendly ruling parties were voted out. Howard took his place alongside Jose Maria Aznar of Spain (whose party was dumped in 2004), Italy’s Silvio Berlusconi (tossed out in 2006), and Britain’s Tony Blair (stepped aside in favor of a Bush-skeptical understudy in 2007). Ruling parties in Poland and Japan also paid for their leaders’ friendships with Bush with big defeats.

“Bush’s pariah status has turned his Coalition of the Willing into a retirement community and given the president an unusual role in the domestic affairs of other countries. In Australia, one of Rudd’s predecessors as Labor leader, Mark Latham, got the top job after describing Bush as ‘the most incompetent and dangerous president in living memory.’ He further described members of Howard’s government as a ‘conga line of suckholes’ to Bush.

“Howard, in turn, expressed a view that al-Qaeda terrorists would be praying for a 2008 victory by Democrats in general and Barack Obama in particular.

Reality has shown that the law of opposites applies here too when actually al-Qaeda is quite happy with the current regime and is rooting for McCain to continue the conflict for “100 years.”

More from Milbank:

“Bush enjoyed this mutual affection. ‘I can tell you, relations are great right now,’ he said last year in Sydney, which was all but shut down by security measures needed to keep him safe.”

I’m telling you, the harder you swing…..  Here’s one in the “Swing easy, hit it hard” category:

Pete Yost writes for the Associated Press: “The CIA leak probe cost $2.58 million, the Government Accountability Office disclosed Monday, wrapping up an investigation that ensnared Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief of staff for perjury, obstruction and lying to the FBI.

By contrast, as Carol D. Leonnig noted in The Washington Post in 2006: “Independent Counsel Kenneth W. Starr’s investigations of President Bill Clinton’s affair with Monica S. Lewinsky and his ties to the failed Whitewater land investment cost $71.5 million and took eight years.

But I know those guys were fighting harder and they just KNEW they’d find something if they could just hit it a little HARDER!

Here’s one from Jon Stewart on the Daily Show, describing the Bush administration line on Iraq: “So if the violence goes down, that is because of the success of the surge. And when the violence goes up, that is because of the success of the surge.”

On and on… The smaller they try to make the government the more they spend to do it, The harder they try to win “hearts and minds” the more hearts and minds they lose, the more they try to get government out of our private lives the more they intrude, and the more religion they get, the bigger the sins they commit.

Oh that this dance be over….