Pelosi defies history and her district

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OPINION How is it that, despite deep congressional opposition to an American-led war on Syria, the representative for one of the nation's most progressive districts, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, has been among President Obama's most ardent backers of war?

While Russia's deal for Syria to turn over its chemical weapons offers a temporary pause in the march to war, the arrangement is fragile and Obama — with support from Pelosi — continues to threaten military action that could lead to a disastrous widening of bloodshed and chaos in Syria and beyond.

What's particularly outrageous about the pro-war push from Pelosi and US Sens. Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein, also from the Bay Area, is their willful dismissal of history. Did they somehow miss the well-documented memos on US wars and interventions? You know, the ones that list American lies on Iraq's WMDs, provocations in Vietnam's Gulf of Tonkin, and the long, long list of CIA-backed coups of democratically elected leaders in Iran, Guatemala, Chile, and beyond?

The nightmare in Syria needs an international solution—but given our ugly track record, how can anyone place faith in American-led military intervention?

This history offers a distressingly reliable prologue to the present. In Afghanistan and Iraq, the US expended vast amounts of blood and treasure attacking brutal thugs it supported for years. How can we expect different results from the same military-security state apparatus that has, for decades, undermined democracies, aided thugs and dictators, and trumped up wars based on lies? How can anyone believe that the US military and security state complex has suddenly found a veracity and moral center it has always profoundly lacked?

There is no question that international pressure and diplomacy must be brought to bear on Bassar al-Assad's sickening Syrian regime, and that chemical weapons, and nukes for that matter, must be wiped off the planet. But the US has an unrivaled record of using these tools of mass killing, and has zero credibility as a force for peacemaking.

The hypocrisies Pelosi chooses to ignore run deeper. The US refuses to enforce the chemical weapons ban on Israel, for instance. And remember the saber-rattling last year over Iran's nuclear program? Not a word about Israel's nukes, not to mention America's. Yet both Israel and the US have a well-documented history of outright aggression, where Iran has none.

The San Francisco Chronicle explained Pelosi's war support as part of her Democratic Party leadership duties, quoting UC Berkeley professor Eric Schickler: "One of the jobs of the party's leader is to support the president of your party, except under the most extenuating circumstances. If she didn't have such liberal credentials already, she would be in much more vulnerable position."

While party leadership and allegiance may be a factor, consider also that Pelosi, Boxer, and Feinstein take in far more dollars from pro-Israel lobbies than do their counterparts (Boxer got more than twice the Senate average, and Pelosi roughly six times the congressional average, according to research by MapLight and Open Secrets).

Despite some loud and colorful protests by Code Pink and other groups, it's sadly true that Pelosi hasn't been very vulnerable: San Francisco's political leadership has done little to let her know how deeply out of step she is with her district.

In years past, the Board of Supervisors has passed resolutions opposing US military interventions; now, they and the Democratic County Central Committee are silent. Where is the outrage and pushback within Pelosi's district? Pelosi's hawkish stance on Syria follows her lamentable defense in July of the NSA spying program. In both cases, these are policies that Pelosi opposed and so many progressives protested vigorously when they were enacted by President George W. Bush. Where is the mass outrage now?

Comments

a minority of kneejerk socialist holed out in Sf want her to.

Gotta problem with that? Then stand for Congress and see how well you do.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 17, 2013 @ 5:12 pm

May I second that .

Posted by Guest on Sep. 17, 2013 @ 6:32 pm

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Sep. 17, 2013 @ 8:36 pm

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

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Posted by troll barrier on Sep. 17, 2013 @ 8:36 pm

I agree it's hypocritical to intervene in Syria but not, say, North Korea - but calling out Israel's "history of outright aggression", really? They've acquired territory as a result of multiple defensive wars - it's the aggressors who lost that want a "do over" and the lines redrawn, and Iran in particular that threatens to wipe them off the map, not the other way around.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 17, 2013 @ 7:00 pm

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into deceptive, petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Sep. 17, 2013 @ 8:35 pm

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 3:13 pm

We in the Union of Republican Fascists, Local #327 would like to thank Lilli for helping to shut down this left-wing board.

A few more weeks of this, and the only person reading SFBG online will be Lilli - which was Lilli's plan all along.

And we don't even have to pay him!

Posted by Union of Republican Fascists, Local #327 on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 3:55 pm

He has little time for anything else, it seems.

So sad. What would he have done with all that time without the internet?

Posted by Guest on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 6:10 pm

But then when they need a doctor or lawyer, they suddenly love Jews and wouldn't dream of seeing an Arab lawyer or doctor.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 18, 2013 @ 5:58 am

regime in Germany.

Equating Israel with Judaism is the ultimate in anti-semitism along with your stereotypical quip about doctors and lawyers with some backhanded anti-Arab sentiment thrown in for gratuitous measure.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 19, 2013 @ 8:46 am

Zionism might have been a better analogy but, either way, the left seems unable to tackle it's own structural antisemitism.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 19, 2013 @ 10:30 am

The right wing has a much larger problem with anti-semitism than the left-wing which is filled with many Jewish social and economic justice activists. "Guest" (anon) knows this already, but when you're committed to a hateful agenda such as "the left is bad", facts don't matter.

The left has a problem with government and big-businesses conspiring to destroy the economic and social well-being of the lower and middle income segments of society. This destructive behavior is an equal opportunity employer, where Gentiles, Jews, Catholics, Protestants, Islamists and even Athiests are welcome to extract as much profit, rent and interest from the middle classes as possible.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 19, 2013 @ 11:15 am

If the shoe fits ya, then wear it with pride.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 19, 2013 @ 11:20 am

that it thinks that everyone who disagrees must be one and the same person, because surely only one person on the planet is not a progressive?

Deluded.

Posted by anon on Sep. 19, 2013 @ 11:34 am

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 4:14 pm

Pelosi should be challenged by a progressive candidate. She's out of step with her district on issues and the values; and we deserve better.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 19, 2013 @ 7:44 am

cannot allow extremists in her home base to conflict with the national interest.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 19, 2013 @ 10:27 am

The republicans ran an anti war republican against her twice.

How long have you lived in SF? A few weeks?

Posted by Matlock on Sep. 22, 2013 @ 12:46 pm

Pelosi has the town wired and if you cross here, she WILL cut you.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 22, 2013 @ 2:11 pm

She is a self-aggrandizing attention harlot.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 22, 2013 @ 4:38 pm

You mean other than the average progressive?

Posted by Matlock on Sep. 22, 2013 @ 9:03 pm

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Sep. 22, 2013 @ 11:09 pm

She politicized tragedy.

Posted by anon on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 8:06 am

Cindy Sheehan was not a serious candidate. However, the DCCC which is run by "progressives" endorsed Pelosi; there are no Republicans who can seriously run for Congress in SF - so what do you expect?
Pelosi backed the invasion of Iraq, as did Feinstein. Sad. They supported TARP. Sad. They backed the "George Bush - now Obama" tax cuts for the ultra-wealthy. Sad. On top of that, they have personally made $Millions$ from overseas investments that no doubt impact their decision-making.
I won't vote for them again. If the left puts up a serious candidate, I would consider that person - just as I would a Tea Pary Candidate. At least I would know either way I would get a representative who wants tax fairness. Until then, I will keep writing myself in.

Posted by Richmondman on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 12:48 pm

elected and are actually responsible for national security, they start to understand that being scared of other nations and never getting involved isn't a viable policy.

Pelosi is left-wing by any standard other than the San Francisco far left, which is less than one percent of the national population.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 1:07 pm

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 2:58 pm

"How is it that, despite deep congressional opposition to an American-led war on Syria, the representative for one of the nation's most progressive districts, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, has been among President Obama's most ardent backers of war?"

Is Cook just getting around to asking this question? At this rate, Pelosi will be long dead before this question is answered.

Posted by marcos on Sep. 20, 2013 @ 5:53 am

And doesn't know what is right for the country as much as the subject matter experts?

Posted by Guest on Sep. 20, 2013 @ 7:39 am

and maintains a death grip on the various handles of hidden power.

And she gets elected over an over again in part because of the sense that there is no alternative.

Coming from a family steeped in politics, has adroitly played lip service pandering to minority communities and her steadfast support for abortion rights into a perfect cover for her corporatist intentions, and is adept at talking out of both sides of her mouth.

The first step to de-electing Nancy Pelosi is the stop giving her your vote support when there is no need to. No vote in the primary, and no vote in the final when there isn't a credible Republican candidate. As a principle, I don't vote for someone in a primary unless I really think they are the best candidate among some sort of a *field* of credible contestants. There isn't any need to validate a one-horse race, ever.

Posted by lillipublicans on Sep. 22, 2013 @ 3:39 pm

In fact it de-legitimizes the one-horse race.

A drop in Pelosi's support, even if she still wins, sends a message. So it's better to vote for someone as an opponent in order to lower her winning percentage.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Sep. 22, 2013 @ 4:19 pm

The Greens are idealists because they never have any power. Once you get power, you have to get real.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 22, 2013 @ 4:39 pm

1) If Pelosi get a lower percentage vote that clearly sends a message.

2) If you don't vote for anyone, she'll get a higher percentage vote by default.

so,

3) We might as well vote for third party candidates (or even the Republican) in order to send that message.

Please state very specifically how that math does not work.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Sep. 22, 2013 @ 5:44 pm

Who did the Greens out up last time. That dancer from the Mission, right? What percentage of Pelosi's vote did she get? Next to nothing, as I recall.

I'm no fan of Pelosi but for a different reason - she's too left-wing. But at least she knows where to draw the line i.e. when it comes to national security.

Posted by anon on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 8:05 am

I don't know, you think beating up on yet another mid-east country will enhance our 'national security'?

Posted by pete moss on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 10:18 am

was committing terror, atrocities, use of WMD's and other acts that would horrify any decent person and threaten this nation and our resources, people, interests or allies.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 10:32 am
Posted by Guest on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 10:58 am
Posted by Guest on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 11:18 am

activities that Israel has undertaken. Opposition to Israel is not anti-Semitism despite the pleadings of fascists like Netanyahu and Lieberman and you.

The charge of racism is baffling.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 11:33 am

The US has not fought a war with Israel. Israel is a victim of the same terrorist nations as the US. They are our allies.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 11:51 am
Posted by Guest on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 12:11 pm

Israel. While of course hiding behind US free speech and running to Jewish doctors and lawyers every time you have a problem.

What have the Arabs ever done for you since the Rubaiyat?

Progressives hate successful races and ethnicities (White, Asian and Jewish) while loving the less successful ones (Black, Hispanic, Arab). When you sign up for being a liberal, do you get a checklist to help keep that straight for you?

Posted by Guest on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 12:40 pm

Nice checklist you have there, Mr. or Ms. Golden Dawn.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 2:00 pm

you made clear anti-Semitic statements. The allegation was fact-based.

You were trying to ascribe racism to people based purely on their race. That allegation was stereotype-based.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 2:08 pm

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 2:33 pm

I am an anti-Zionist atheist from a Jewish background. Criticism or opposition to Israel is not about Judaism.

You make generalizations about religious and ethnic groups. I made none. Try to drill that into your dense skull.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 2:36 pm

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 2:43 pm

just a bumper to push a troll comment past the jump ;)

Posted by troll bumper on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 2:52 pm
Posted by Guest on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 3:03 pm

i just don't have the luxury of sitting in front of blogs all day like you do, waiting for the perfect moment to post an attack

but to a cloistered twit like you who only understands immediate gratification, and can't separate his fat ass from the chair in front of his computer without suffering bodily injury, the future of course, doesn't exist...

Posted by racer x on Sep. 23, 2013 @ 3:23 pm

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