Thursday, March 17, 2016

Ted Cruz Is a Lying Fuck Bastard - Part 9

Hi there! I'm Dave-El, your humble blogger and this is I'm So Glad My Suffering Amuses You, a blog that is full of itself. 

So it's Thursday and if you're a regular reader of this blog: 

1) Thank you. 
2) Remember to take your meds.
3) And you know today is another installment of....
























This past Tuesday was another make or break day for the Presidential race. 

  • Did Trump win Ohio? Or Florida? Or both? 
  • Has he cinched the nomination? 
  • Or did Kasich or Rubio pull off miracles to deny Trump a clean path to the GOP nomination? 
  • Was Tuesday the end for Kasich or Rubio? Or a momentary reprieve from political oblivion? 
  • Over on the Democrat side, has Sanders narrowed the distance or is Clinton pulling away towards her coronation?  


How the hell should I know? You, dear reader, are reading this on Thursday and have had the answers to those questions for two days. Me, I'm writing this post on Sunday, two days before Tuesday's primaries. You, as you read this, are smarter than me as I write this! 

Tomorrow's blog post, I'll play catch up with this week's political news but for today, let's take another crack at...

TED CRUZ IS A LYING FUCK BASTARD


One of the many frustrating things about this political campaign is the propensity for a candidate to say something that is at best a gross misrepresentation of the truth and at worst an outright lie and then go on to repeat it over and over and over again without being challenged on it. To be fair, it's not limited to just one candidate but hey, this post is not called All the Candidates Are Lying Fuck Bastards and Ted does seem to be the most egregious at this sort of thing.  

At the Republican debate last week, Ted Cruz suggested again that “Iran released our hostages the day Ronald Reagan was sworn into office” in 1981 because President Carter was perceived as “weak.” The reason this keeps coming up over and over is the narrative that President Obama is a complete pussy and everyone keeps running over him but that'll stop the day a Republican is in office.  

Let me state here before moving forward that this is not a defense or indictment of President Obama's foreign policy. He's done some stuff OK, other stuff not so OK. But as is the case with the Republican perspective on Obama, everything he does sucks. 

Obama's perceived "weakness" on the world stage, particularly in relationship to Iran was brought into focus for the Republican candidates when the prisoner exchange deal from this past January resulted in Iran releasing five Americans that had been detained. Ted Cruz said on Fox News Sunday on Jan. 17 that the “only reason” American sailors were detained briefly in early January by the Iranian military was “because of the weakness of Barack Obama.” He said: “But there is good news — which is the fastest thing that can change with a new president is foreign policy. It’s worth remembering, the same nation Iran in 1981 released our hostages the day Ronald Reagan was sworn into office.”

To be fair, Marco Rubio was pushing the same line of reasoning at the same time. “When I become president of the United States, our adversaries around the world will know that America is no longer under the command of someone weak like Barack Obama. And it will be like Ronald Reagan where as soon as he took office, the hostages were released from Iran."  

OK, let's do a really quick recap back to 1979. Iranian rebels captures the US Embassy in Tehran and holds hostages there for 444 days. On the day of Ronald Reagan's inauguration as President, outgoing President Jimmy Carter received word that the hostages had been released.  

The Iran hostage crisis hit the Carter Administration hard. Already seen as a weak and feckless leader (the cardigan sweaters didn't help, Jimmy. Also calling yourself "Jimmy"), repeated failures to secure the release of the hostages through diplomatic and military means only underscored that image. Plus we as a nation were still wounded by the betrayal of Watergate, the fall of Vietnam and economic strife in the form of inflation and high unemployment.  

When Ronald Reagan came along with a confident swagger, it made a lot of Americans feel good about being Americans. This is not a defense or indictment of Reagan's skills as a leader. But there was no denying the return of a long gone feeling of confidence and strength. As a high school senior who spent my formative years wondering what was to become of our country mired in despair and futility, I know I felt it. 

So naturally the narrative sprung up that Iran looked across the waters of the Atlantic, saw Reagan riding up on a white horse and went, "Oh shit! We better get these hostages out of here!"   

But there are some considerable holes in this narrative. You can read more details about this here as FactCheck.Org 
interviewed several experts on the Iran hostage crisis,

But I do want to call attention to Tom Ahern, the CIA station chief at the time and one of the hostages, said one of his principal tormentors “told me that we were not going to get out as long as Carter was president.” That had less to do with fear of Reagan, than hatred for Carter.  

Journalist and author Mark Bowden interviewed about 12 of the hostage-takers for his 2006 book, “Guests of the Ayatollah: The First Battle in America’s War with Militant Islam.” They professed to be unaware of American political figures andhad no idea who Ronald Reagan was.” Bowden believes the hostage-takers did delay the release “as a final thumb in the eye of Jimmy Carter.”

So to credit the release of the Iranian hostages on a fear of Reagan vs. a lack of fear of Carter does not hold up. It was more of a hatred of Carter vs. not giving a shit about Reagan that resulted in the release of the hostages when Reagan took office. 

And yet the narrative persists that Iran capitulated due to fear of Reagan and a strong Republican President. 

Even if this narrative was true, Ted Cruz, look in a mirror. 

No one is scared of you. 






But you keep selling the snake oil that your mere presence in the White House is going to scare the world back into line and I will have to continue spreading the word that....

TED CRUZ IS A LYING FUCK BASTARD

_____________________________________



As I noted above, tomorrow's blog post will bring us up to speed on the political landscape since Tuesday's primaries. If you're tired of the political stuff, sorry, it's kind of thing for me. 

BUT I will endeavor to make Saturday's post as not about politics as possible. (Unless it's revealed that "Ted Cruz" is actually some kind of weird robot/flesh avatar being piloted by a toddler. Then all bets are off!) 

And Sunday is a Doctor Who post. No politics there! I guarantee it! (Mostly.) 


Oh, if you thought I forgot today was St. Patrick's Day, well, yes, I did. Here's a link to a St. Paddy's Day post back in the first year of this blog to help get your Irish up. (Or whatever.)

Until next time, remember to be good to one another.   

All Things Must Pass

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