An Argument Against Bombing Syria…

…can be found simply by looking at who supports the action.  Scott Lemieux at LGM notes:  “Experts” Who Are Always Wrong About Everything Want to Bomb Syria.

Said experts include:  Joe Lieberman, Bernard-Henri Levy, Karl Rove, Bill Kristol, Elliott Abrams, Leon Wieseltier as well as “Max Boot, Paul Berman, Dr. Clifford D. May, Marty Peretz, and Danielle Pletka.”

I can’t speak for every name on the list, but many of the more prominent ones no only have been wrong an awful lot, but also appear impervious to learning from past mistakes.

(Yes, I am being a bit snarky here, but sometimes snark illuminates the path of truth).

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Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. legion says:

    I was all ready to support you 100% on this one, Prof, and then I went and looked one thing up – John Bolton thinks military action in Syria is likely to cause more problems than doing nothing. Now I’m confused… people whose opinions I consider bellwethers of “what to do the opposite of” are disagreeing…

  2. @legion: Oh, my. That does create something of a conundrum.

  3. Rob in CT says:

    So we have Obama lining up with a fools gallery, and me agreeing with John Bolton. It might be funny if we weren’t talking about life and death.

  4. Ron Beasley says:

    @legion: Bolton probably fears that getting involved in Syria would end up interfering with an attack on Iran.

  5. Donald Sensing says:

    Those of us who want to stop this madness should try to get George W. Bush to endorse it. Then maybe Obama will reconsider. Maybe.

    I wish I had more time to write in detail about the strategic folly of the apparently-upcoming strikes. But then, I covered a lot of that ground in the buildup to the Libya bombing in March 2011. Someone had asked me whether Obama had a Plan B for Libya, to which I replied, “Plan B? There isn’t even a Plan A!”

    Much of that post applies today re. Syria. “Hope is not a method, and wishes are not plans.”

  6. timb says:

    @legion: Man, that is a huge problem! Neither Bloody Bill Kristol nor Bolton have EVER been right about anything and yet that disagree? Is this like the time Spock told that robot he could not lie and then stated he was lying? And, like, the robot blew up?

    Come to think of it, the ideal situation here would be for Bolton and Kristol to blow up

  7. Tillman says:

    @legion @Steven L. Taylor: Maybe, and I’m winging it a bit on this, we should come up with some sort of “Bonehead” Calculus to weigh always-wrong pundits (expressed in kilomorrises) on either side of an issue to divine the most probabilistic course being actually wrong.

  8. Jon Hendry says:

    “Dr. Clifford D. May”

    I assume this must be a diploma mill doctorate, because Cliff’s bio on his site only mentions two Master’s degrees.

  9. legion says:

    @Tillman: I like that. It plays in with the use of a Friedman as a unit of time…

  10. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    Here’s another fun factoid: in 2007, Joe Biden said that if then-president Bush bombed Iran without Congressional approval, then he would push for Bush’s impeachment.

    Of course, at that point Joe Biden was a Senator, and it’s the House that impeaches, but at least Slow Joe’s heart was in the right place…

    Thanks to Ace of Spades for that blast from the past…