Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

The Powell Tragedy
NRO The Corner ^ | 1/18/13 | Hanson

Posted on 01/18/2013 10:55:26 AM PST by pabianice

Like many, I was confused not by General Colin Powell’s endorsements of Barack Obama, but rather his recent remarks alleging Republican extremism and racism. His barrage was internally inconsistent and ultimately made little sense at all. Such unfounded charges are out of character with his distinguished record and career.

In 2008 and 2012 Republicans nominated candidates from the more moderate wing of the party. Mitt Romney had been a centrist Massachusetts governor, and fellow Republican senator John McCain, for example, whom Powell also did not endorse, in the 2000 primaries had run to the left of Powell’s own employer, George W. Bush. In fact, McCain ran a campaign which was certainly more centrist than those of Reagan and the elder Bush, both of whom were also Powell’s bosses. McCain’s advisers were moderates in comparison to a Lyn Nofzinger or a take-no-prisoners Lee Atwater. If the issue had been primarily moderation in the Republican party, then Powell quite logically could have seen in McCain a candidate more centrist than the three Republican presidents he once worked for.

While “shuck and jive” is a silly term to use — although liberals from current press secretary Tim Carney to Chris Mathews have felt no hesitation in employing it, and its origins and exact meaning are mired in controversy — it was Democratic governor Andrew Cuomo in 2008 (“You can’t shuck and jive at a press conference.”), not Sarah Palin, who was the first major political figure to use the phrase in criticism of Barack Obama — to the apparent silence of General Powell at the time.

Stereotyping, polarization, and racial insensitivity have been frequent in the last three years. Yet when one collates the explicit instances (e.g., “they cling to guns and religion,” “nation of cowards,” “punish our enemies,” “put y’all in chains,” etc.), Democrats seem at least as culpable as Republicans in their indiscretions. As far as direct slurs of African-Americans in the context of the Obama candidacy, there were two infamous instances — one a reported characterization of Barack Obama by Senator Harry Reid (“a light-skinned African American with no Negro dialect, unless he wanted to have one”), and another by Senator Joe Biden (“I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy”) — both insensitive stereotypes, as far as commensurate public commentary goes, ignored by Powell at the time. Were Cuomo, Biden, and Reid seen in 2008 as symptomatic of a darker liberal racism within the Democratic party?

As far as Powell’s oblique reference to Governor Sununu’s supposed racism for claiming Obama had been “lazy” in his preparation for the first presidential debate, the blunderbuss Sununu is known for just such off-the-cuff and blunt candor about everyone. Yet “lazy” is not quite Sununu’s alone: Barack Obama himself, in a moment of self-critique, earlier had used the same image to describe his own failings (e.g., “There is a deep down, underneath all the work I do, I think there’s a laziness in me”). I don’t think Obama saw any particular racial connotation in the epithet.

But more worrisome is the larger context of Powell’s remarks. If he is worried about uncivil speech, extremism, and a cruelty in the public arena, then he might have recalled that his own boss was the object of a mainstream novel imagining his assassination, of a prize-winning docudrama imagining his assassination, of a Guardian op-ed imagining his assassination, and of a New Republic essay entitled “Why I hate George W. Bush.” Those smears did not come from conservative critics, of whom there were many, and they did not prompt Powell’s commensurate outrage. But even stranger, Powell himself, as Brett Stephens recently pointed out, has allegedly said things that might be termed insensitive to Jews (e.g., “Gestapo office” and “card-carrying member of the Likud Party”) in the context of loose, political speech that is part of the Washington give-and-take.

Powell is an authentic American hero, who heretofore was honored by Republicans in three administrations with prestigious appointments, could have had their presidential nomination in 1996, and had been smeared only by those on the left (despicably, as a “house negro” from the likes of Al Sharpton and Harry Belafonte) — to the general silence of liberals. Nonetheless, his recent accusations are not factual, at least from the evidence he so far has cited. Perhaps they reflect a deeper anguish at former colleagues, and especially “neocons” (who once supposedly elicited from Powell the pejorative “f***ing crazies”) — all in the context of his tenure as secretary of state and his departure, and especially the unfortunate flawed presentation at the U.N. on WMD in Iraq and the disturbing silence about the role of his subordinate Richard Armitage in the Scooter Libby travesty. Certainly the controversies over those years have left their scars on both sides.

Colin Powell’s distinguished career rightly allows him to be influential in his political assessments and to speak candidly about whatever he sees as the truth — but his recent allegations are neither logical nor supported with evidence. And that’s simply a pity.


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Miscellaneous; Philosophy; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: powell; vdh
Powell himself credited his rise in the Army to Affirmative Action. And now this pitiful spectacle.
1 posted on 01/18/2013 10:55:29 AM PST by pabianice
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: pabianice
Colon Bowel is the official Stepin Fetchit of the Ubama White Hut.
2 posted on 01/18/2013 10:57:45 AM PST by E. Pluribus Unum (TYRANNY: When the people fear the politicians. LIBERTY: When the politicians fear the people.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

IIRC...he was in Reagan’s WH as some sort of aid as a Colonel.....not many years later, he was JCS....AA? You betcha!


3 posted on 01/18/2013 10:57:49 AM PST by Gaffer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

He is a racist putz.


4 posted on 01/18/2013 10:58:49 AM PST by MileHi ( "It's coming down to patriots vs the politicians." - ovrtaxt)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

Powell has fallen into the divisive Obamanetrics of hate whitey.

Pity...


5 posted on 01/18/2013 11:03:13 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks (In the game of life, there are no betting limits)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice
he is not an American hero.....what has he ever done?....more and more convinced that gaining grade especially very high grade in the military has nothing to do with your intelligence nor wisdom nor common sense nor ability, but just who you are buddy's with, who you golf with.......

these military brass are political beings from the get go.....

6 posted on 01/18/2013 11:03:56 AM PST by cherry
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice
In 2008 and 2012 Republicans nominated candidates from the more moderate wing of the party.

And in 1988, '92, '96, 2000, and 2004 as well.

Mitt Romney had been a centrist Massachusetts governor

I would have expected better from Hanson. If he's taking Powell to task for bending the truth, writing that sentence should have made his keyboard burst into flames.

7 posted on 01/18/2013 11:06:04 AM PST by Colonel_Flagg ("Don't be afraid to see what you see." -- Ronald Reagan)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice
None of this has ANYTHING to do with race. It is completely and totally about evil philosophy versus good philosophy. Followers of Satan vs. followers of God. Colin Powell, Obama and the rest - Shut up!

You fellas need to get the beam out of your own eye before you start picking at the speck in mine! If you knew who I was and my whole background, you can NOT call me a racist at all. Wouldn't stick. No one ever has. That's why some liberals REALLY hate me -- can't find something to criticize and at the last of my school teaching career just made up something that was a lie. My attorney made them unmake it up.

8 posted on 01/18/2013 11:06:14 AM PST by MeneMeneTekelUpharsin (Freedom is the freedom to discipline yourself so others don't have to do it for you.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

>> Like many, I was confused not by General Colin Powell’s endorsements of Barack Obama, but rather his recent remarks alleging Republican extremism and racism

Seriously, after the crap he pulled on Scooter Libby?

Armitage says he was foolish in CIA leak
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1924412/posts


9 posted on 01/18/2013 11:11:19 AM PST by Gene Eric (Demoralization is a weapon of the enemy. Don't get it, don't spread it!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice
the older powell gets, the harder it is for him to hide his true nature. he’s a racist and the only thing that matters to him is skin color
10 posted on 01/18/2013 11:14:51 AM PST by paul51 (11 September 2001 - Never forget)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

funny how this race baiter said nothing when the left and the leftist media were doing the same things to Condi Rice he now falsely accuses the GOP of doing to obama...


11 posted on 01/18/2013 11:21:15 AM PST by God luvs America (63.5 million pay no income tax and vote for DemoKrats...)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: paul51

He’s a milk turd.

He tried to be as white as possible going in, now he’s trying to be as brown as possible going out.

But in reality he’s become a stinky pile of off-color poop. /s


12 posted on 01/18/2013 11:22:35 AM PST by fattigermaster
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: cherry

Yeah, I don’t understand why Hanson panders and calls that chump a hero. I’ve read his autobiography and it’s clear from his own words that he didn’t have all that much combat experience in Vietnam, and none after that. He got one decoration for bravery and that was for dragging people out of a helicopter crash he was in (nothing to be sneered at, but we’re not talking Audie Murphy either).

He was a staff puke most of his career and leveraged affirmative action as much as he could. He never particularly exhibited all that much talent from what I’ve read.


13 posted on 01/18/2013 11:27:34 AM PST by drbuzzard (All animals are created equal, but some are more equal than others.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: paul51

Powell never commanded a company in Vietnam and was never in harm’s way. He was a desk jockey. Each and every promotion after the rank of captain was due to affirmative action, all the way through his selection as Sec of State. All this courtesy of republicans, who he has never been one of. All the years he was taking from republicans he was a democrat. Finally he admits it with his pathetic endorsement of an unknown ward politician for president of the United States. The reason? Powell is as liberal as the day is long and Obama has the same skin tone. The man has no integrity whatsover. He’s a user. Nothing else.


14 posted on 01/18/2013 11:29:31 AM PST by NKP_Vet
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: cherry

During my Navy career it was my observation that half of COs were great people and great leaders, and the other half were useless “admiral’s boys” who got there via connections. It is also my observation about flag officers, many of whom I served with on their way up.


15 posted on 01/18/2013 11:33:28 AM PST by pabianice (washington, dc ..)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

Comment #16 Removed by Moderator

To: cherry

“these military brass are political beings from the get go.....”


powell was on the leading edge of the card players. Had he not played it, he would today be a retired Lt Col fishing on some bayou in Louisiana..


17 posted on 01/18/2013 11:34:09 AM PST by AFret. ("Charlie don't surf ! ")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

I graduated from high school with a guy who went on to graduate from the Naval Academy. He was a Top Gun pilot and flew the F-14. He retired with the rank of captain. I asked him why he did not become an admiral. His answer was “I did not want to kiss ass.”


18 posted on 01/18/2013 11:43:27 AM PST by forgotten man (forgotten man)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

Comment #19 Removed by Moderator

To: pabianice

Trivia bits about his military career.

1) As a major, Powell admitted that one of his jobs was to ‘whitewash’ the My Lai Massacre, which he admitted years later, and also said that much information about the event was never released to the public.

2) After a race riot when in Korea, where African American soldiers almost killed a Caucasian officer, Powell was charged by his commanding general with cracking down on black militants.

3) He became only the third general since World War II, along with Alexander Haig, to reach four-star rank without ever serving as a division commander. He did command V Corps in Germany, however.


20 posted on 01/18/2013 11:48:55 AM PST by yefragetuwrabrumuy (Best WoT news at rantburg.com)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice
Powell is an authentic American hero,

Powell should be honored for his service. However, I see nothing truly "heroic" in his record.

Powell's actions and words, clearly show that he is a true enemy of our Constitution.

I despise anyone who seeks to destroy our Constitutional Republic.

21 posted on 01/18/2013 11:54:45 AM PST by sand88
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

Benedict Arnold.


22 posted on 01/18/2013 11:56:18 AM PST by freekitty (Give me back my conservative vote; then find me a real conservative to vote for)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

23 posted on 01/18/2013 11:57:02 AM PST by Godebert (No Person Except a NATURAL BORN CITIZEN!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

So Colin Powell is showing his, er, true colors.


24 posted on 01/18/2013 11:58:32 AM PST by VRW Conspirator (Sometimes it takes calamity to lead to serenity - FReeper RacerX1128)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

We sometimes explain a part of the Hollywood problem as average people who feel an unconscious guilt, for fame and fortune that far, far exceeds any rational balance of return, for their actual achievements and intellect, and efforts.

Powell shares some similarities to that, who knows how twisted up inside, this guy is. The GOP wanted to gift him the Presidency for crying out loud, he was the Obama, before Obama.


25 posted on 01/18/2013 12:04:58 PM PST by ansel12 (Cruz said "conservatives trust Sarah Palin that if she says this guy is a conservative, that he is")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Gaffer
"...he was in Reagan’s WH as some sort of aid as a Colonel....."

Powell pinned on his first star in '79. He put on his second about the same time he went to work with Weinberger.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not a Powell defender or apologist, but I'm no big fan of inaccurate information either.

26 posted on 01/18/2013 12:04:58 PM PST by Joe 6-pack (Que me amat, amet et canem meum)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: pabianice
List the distinguished things that Powell has done in his career. I can't recall anything mentioned before. He is articulate and dresses well but, in the end, shows his weak substance by endorsing a fellow black.
After making the rank of Captain in the Army, he, most likely, wrote his own OERs (Officer Evaluation Report) which was endorsed by his supervisor. To not be accused of racism, the super then sends it up the line and a “walk on water” rating is eventually passed in front of a Promotion Board and,the next thing you know, Colin Powell is being considered for promotion to General Officer.
He rode on the coat-tails of affirmative action and the fear of racism. It is not fair to refer to him as a “token”, but what else? He then endorses another!
The Dems put up an electable black guy from out of left field. The Repubs didn't have one then and anyone now in consideration doesn't have a chance with his or her own race, so therefore, a waste of time.
27 posted on 01/18/2013 12:09:00 PM PST by BatGuano (You don't think I'd go into combat with loose change in my pocket, do ya?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

Powell’s just as user with no character whatsoever. Didn’t he leave our troops stranded in a major battle? Was it Fallujah? And nobody criticized him because he was black.


28 posted on 01/18/2013 12:12:36 PM PST by Ms. Blunt
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Joe 6-pack

Okay....just seemed to me he rose dramatically....my bad.


29 posted on 01/18/2013 12:14:04 PM PST by Gaffer
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 26 | View Replies]

To: pabianice
all in the context of his tenure as secretary of state and his departure, and especially the unfortunate flawed presentation at the U.N. on WMD in Iraq and the disturbing silence about the role of his subordinate Richard Armitage in the Scooter Libby travesty.

That's my opinion as well. Powell believes that this is a massive negative reflection on his career (or perhaps public perception of his career).

His attacks on the GOP are just desperate attempts to maintain (or rejuvenate) his reputation/credibility and stay relevant.
30 posted on 01/18/2013 12:22:23 PM PST by tanknetter
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

Powell has never done anything, except try to look cool. Probably he couldn’t hold in his ‘hating whitey’ anymore.

Mrs. Esopman


31 posted on 01/18/2013 12:25:17 PM PST by esopman (Blessings on Freepers Everywhere and Their Most Intelligent Designer)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

“His barrage was internally inconsistent and ultimately made little sense at all. Such unfounded charges are out of character with his distinguished record and career.”

It’s entirely in character. He’s an ‘affirmative’-action hire whose success was in being almost as good as what we would have had if the most qualified people regardless of race were promoted, even if that meant white men. And he knows it.


32 posted on 01/18/2013 12:29:27 PM PST by OldNewYork (Biden '13. Impeach now.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: cherry
he is not an American hero.....what has he ever done?....more and more convinced that gaining grade especially very high grade in the military has nothing to do with your intelligence nor wisdom nor common sense nor ability, but just who you are buddy's with, who you golf with.......

I think VDH was just "playing nice" when he referred to Powell as a "hero"; maybe to keep from being called a racist himself. when I think of Powell, I remember George H.W. Bush's account of the end of Operation Desert Storm. Bush said that as they had the Iraqis on the run back to Baghdad, that Powell came running in and asked "Mr. President, can we stop the killing now!?".

So, there is Powell's great accomplishment. He helped end Desert Storm before it was finished, thereby making the Iraq War under W a necessity. Elevate a general via affirmative action, and you get an affirmative action war as a result. What a putz.

33 posted on 01/18/2013 12:33:56 PM PST by Sans-Culotte ( Pray for Obama- Psalm 109:8)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: NKP_Vet
Powell never commanded a company in Vietnam and was never in harm’s way.

Powell rec'd a Purple Heart during Vietnam due to an injury received courtesy of a Viet Cong booby-trap. Not a major injury (stepped on a punji stake and got a major foot/leg infection as a result), but certainly more significant than the minor scrapes that earned John Kerry THREE Purple Hearts.

In addition he was decorated for bravery for his actions in a helicopter crash that he survived - which included him rescuing three others as well, including his division commander.

I have no issue with going after Powell for the various issues that marked his later career. But his service in Vietnam sure looks to be legitimate. He didn't do a "Senator's Son" tour like Al Gore did, nor did he manage to sneak his way home on a technicality after accidentally** being assigned to combat duty like John Kerry did.

(** John Kerry went into Swift Boats at a time when they were operating off the coast basically as water taxiis for brass. When Zumwalt (I think) retasked them to riverine combat duty Kerry started doing whatever he could to get himself home.)
34 posted on 01/18/2013 12:34:00 PM PST by tanknetter
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

I can’t help the comparison of Powell and Rice. When Powell was accused of going to the UN with lies, he did nothing to refute the Marxist democrats lies. He never stood up and got in their face for the demagoguery. Instead he kept trying to distance himself from the party he claimed while making rank and career. Condi Rice got up and stood in their faces and dismissed their lies instead of cowering in fear of some political rhetoric. As I said before, Powell is a user and a man of no character.


35 posted on 01/18/2013 12:43:41 PM PST by Ms. Blunt
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

The affirmative action general can’t get past color. Actually affirmative action was originally meant for Afro-Americans who were descendants of American slaves. Mr. Powell traces his ancestry to the islands and not to American slaves.


36 posted on 01/18/2013 12:46:02 PM PST by kenmcg (scapegoat)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

You got that exactly right...
30years of service and knew a lot of these guys. ..could even name names....including Mullin...


37 posted on 01/18/2013 12:47:11 PM PST by matginzac
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: kenmcg

VDH hopefully is actually aware that the black bigots like Powell are racist haters of all whites. But of course like 90% of Professors he thinks that every body is the same.


38 posted on 01/18/2013 12:59:08 PM PST by iopscusa (El Vaquero. (SC Lowcountry Cowboy))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 36 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

“You can either be somebody, or do something.” John Boyd


39 posted on 01/18/2013 1:00:47 PM PST by blueunicorn6 ("A crack shot and a good dancer")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: pabianice

Someone give me a hanky...boo hoo hoo hoo....Life as we know it just can’t go on. The horror, the horror! Powell is seen without the blinders.


40 posted on 01/18/2013 1:22:01 PM PST by count-your-change (you don't have to be brilliant, not being stupid is enough)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BatGuano

>List the distinguished things that Powell has done in his career.<

.
Uh, uh, uh, he has a chestful of medals. He must’ve done something of value.


41 posted on 01/18/2013 2:07:52 PM PST by 353FMG ( I refuse to specify whether I am serious or sarcastic -- I respect FReepers too much.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 27 | View Replies]

To: tanknetter

“In addition he was decorated for bravery for his actions in a helicopter crash that he survived - which included him rescuing three others as well, including his division commander”

He does not have “V” device on any decoration. Which means none of them involved combat. He assisted others in pulling three men out of the burning chopper. The chopper was not involved in combat operations. For this he received the Soldier’s Medal, awarded for non-combat actions The Bronze Star again was for non-combat service. In otherwords he got it for a staff job. The Purple Heart was for stepping on a punji stick. He used this injury to pull a John Kerry and leave RVN early. Why a PH was ever awarded for stepping on a feces smeared stick, I could never figure out. Now if Charlie is running at you with a shyt smeared stick and you get poked, that’s that’s another story. Powell, without a doubt, is the only officer that served in Vietnam, who never commanded men in battle, but ended up never missing a promotion and ended up retiring as a full general, and then Chairman, JCS. Can you say affirmative action? Where was the command experience for him to be promoted as fast as he was. It does not exist.


42 posted on 01/18/2013 3:58:56 PM PST by NKP_Vet
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 34 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson