Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Chicken Little was a patriot!

Most nights, when I tuck my daughter in bed, she asks to hear a story. I have a limited repertoire, so I hold up my left hand with digits extended. It is well established that the fingers stand for, Snow White, Cinderella, Bears, Pigs and Chickens, in that order from pinky to thumb.

"Chickens" is really a catch-all, so if she chooses the thumb I then hold up two more fingers, to select from The Ugly Duckling or Henny Penny. We used to include a third "chicken" sub-category, but the story of Chicken Little was so idiotic neither of us could stand to live through it again.

My five year old daughter wisely detects the ignominiousness of Chicken Little, and wants no part if him.

So last night, on Fox News, we heard Ellis Henican insist it is patriotic to run in circles, screaming about the falling sky. Of course, he refers to the war in Iraq. No matter that the Left has been completely wrong at every turn-- the capture of Baghdad took weeks, not months. We never had hundreds of thousands of casualties. Our troops did not die in massive numbers from chemical weapons attacks. Oil production is up, the Iraq economy is working. Elections will in fact happen in January. No, by their measure, all is lost.

It's not over yet, he and others insist. More bad things will happen. And by pointing out every misstep and failure in Iraq, he and the Left are simply doing their patriotic duty. With such patriotism a few decades ago, we should have immediately surrendered to Tojo and Hitler. It would have been "the wrong war at the wrong time".

Last night's conversation on Hannity & Colmes began with Ann Coulter pointing out how the Leftist doomsayers seem to gloat over every tragic event in Iraq, including the deaths of 20 soldiers in Mosul yesterday. Ellis was outraged at the suggestion he gloats. Ann, in a rare moment of conciliation, was willing to back down from the term "gloat".

But I am not. I see it every day, how a tragic death brings out the clucking heads, telling us once again how all is lost. The war is obviously being lost. Is already lost. Could never have been won. Wrong war, wrong time. There is no terrorist threat. Yadda yadda, cluck cluck.

I suppose if we heard from them at all when something good happens, one might suggest they are simply being objective, somehow fair and balanced. Even a bland acknowledgement that something positive occurred-- people are registering to vote. Kids are learning to read. Oil production is up-- anything at all. But we only hear from them when something awful happens. Or the Secretary of Defense, it is revealed, uses a letter-signing machine instead of personally signing condolence letters. Oh, the arrogance of that man! Clearly he must go!

We get deep news coverage of a small quote, taken completely out of context. To wit, "you go to war with the army you have". Ignore the fact that he got a standing ovation seconds earlier as he explained our logistical challenges and solutions. Simply overlook the appreciation he got from those troops. Or the fact that those troops were not even in Iraq. Or that until fairly recently, troops drove jeeps, not humvees.

Or that jeeps themselves were never armored, any more than our troops wore armor. What? Troops wear armor? But is it the latest model? Does it provide perfect protection? Oh no! The sky is falling!

No, we get brave patriotic "analysis" from the likes of Ellis Henican. I guess when your career was built on covering the New York subway system, everything worth reporting tends to resemble a train wreck.

Ellis, go back to the subway from which you came. The sky is falling.

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