Democracy? You’re Soaking In It!

From Holden:

I’m still looking for reactions from the short-bus side of the blogoshpere to Hamas’s apparent victory in the Palestinian elections. So far I have not found a peep about it at Maglalang’s place or Le Corner, and over at InstaJerk Professor Reynolds typically responded with no original words of his own.

Count on Captain Kangaroo Ed to step up to the hypocracy plate.

The first item on our list should be an absolute end to all aid to the Palestinian territories and government. The US should not subsidize Hamas, nor should it give money to a people whose only aim appears to be genocide. Second, the US should allow Israel to respond militarily to any and all provocations — no more pressure from Washington on Tel Aviv to moderate their responses to suicide bombings and missile attacks. And if Hamas and the Palestinians still want to wage war after that, then let the IDF roll across the West Bank and Gaza Strip and push the whole lot of them right into the Jordan River and Mediterranean Sea. That’s what total war means, and as soon as the world stops preventing the Palestinians from the risks of their own choices, the sooner they will conclude that war is the worst possible choice for them.

My, can this be the same Captain who thoroughly chastized the Times for an editorial about California’s gubernatorial recall election?

The New York Times editorial board should consider putting its own essays behind the $50 sanity firewall, playing to its elitist core audience rather than the broader sphere of readers that engage in the political process. Today’s editorial on referenda exposes Pinch’s crew as the worst kind of elitists — those who believe that American voters cannot be trusted with a democracy at all, but should instead rely on their betters to instruct them on how to behave:

[snip]

The Times apparently has little faith in the wisdom of the electorate.

[snip]

Direct democracy allows voters to hold their own check on legislative arrogance. It’s telling that the New York Times demeans this power and encourages its abandonment in favor of an entrenched political class that has demonstrably become less accountable to the electorate.

Oh, wait, I get it now. When the people of California throw out their duly elected governor in favor of a drug-addled, sexually harrassing, Nazi scion they are demonstrating “the wisdom of the electorate.” But when the people of Palestine give a majority of their parliamentary seats to a party that has violently reacted to the entity that at one point in history wiped out Palestine itself, then their “only aim appears to be genocide” and they must be vigorously opposed.

Let’s be clear here, I’m not cheering for Hamas. Violence is never an acceptable course of action, violence in response to injustice only breeds more injustice and violence. The history of the Middle East stands as a stark demonstration of this fact. I condemn Hamas for its repeated attacks on civilian targets in Israel.

But the sad fact is Hamas’ views seem to be shared by a majority of the Palestinian electorate. One can only hope that the integration of Hamas into the democratic process will eventually force them to moderate both their views and behaviors. But the right’s reaction to this election demonstrates once again that they favor the democratic process only when it yields the results they desire.