Respected MSNBC contributor and editor-at-large of The Bulwark, Bill Kristol, is deeply, deeply disappointed with his former street gang because every decent person knows, if you say some shit and it turns out to be wrong and people get hurt, you apologize for that shit.
That's the minimum.
I know this because Bill Kristol was the featured guest on The Bulwark today and I heard him say it there Let's listen in with some emphasis from me to draw your eye:
Kristol: ...As I think any decent person would say, in a similar circumstance, "You know what... I... I... I didn't mean, of course, for people to [inaudible] and storm the capital. I meant, y'know let's have a legal process." I mean they can reinterpret their own words. And "I'm very sorry if anyone misunderstood me and I apologize for the terrible things that happened for if I inadvertently contributed to them."
Now I don't think in all these cases it was so inadvertent, but that would be at least the minimal thing one would do
I was trying to think about myself, or you, or anyone, y'know in a situation where you might have said something maybe a little bit heated. In some moment some people, y'know, do something really pretty bad as a result -- not as a result of what one says but in accordance. Let's just say with what one says one feels terrible right? You say "That's not what I meant" and "I... I... I really I'm sorry and I... I... regret that. I'm gonna be more careful in the future."
None of them... none of them have said that.
The alert reader might notice that apologies which are ask of our new Never Trump BFFs elicit a subtly different reaction than apologies which are demanded by our new Never Trump BFFs.
Kinda weird, innit?
For example, does anyone remember the Iraq War? Anyone?
It was an ideologically-driven Bush Administration clusterfuck that Republicans lied us into and about which Bill Kristol had many very definite opinions, some of the best of which were almost lost to history. But here, thanks to Common Dreams are excerpts from a C-Span interview with Bill Kristol from March of 2003 which is such a farrago of smirking, jaw-dropping bullshit that you have to read to believe it:
I'm talking about Kristol's two-hour appearance on C-Span's Washington Journal on March 28, 2003, just nine days after the President launched his invasion of Iraq. No one remembers it today. You can't even fish it out of LexisNexis. It's not there. Yet it's a masterpiece, a double album of smarm, horrifying ignorance, and bald-faced deceit. While you've heard him play those instruments before, he never again reached such heights. It's a performance for the history books -- particularly that chapter about how the American Empire collapsed.lost-kristol-tapes
For our purposes today, I want to bring one particular quote to your attention. It's at the very end where Kristol confidently declared that he would be glad to be held to a "moral standard" should all of his prediction and grand promises turn out to be dead wrong.
"The moral credentials of this war are strong. We'll see if we follow through. I agree with Mr. Ellsberg on this, if we're not serious about helping the Iraqi people rebuild their country and about helping promote decent democratic government in Iraq... it will be a much less morally satisfying and fully defensible war... I'm happy to be held to a moral standard. I ask that it be a serious moral standard."
Of course all of his prediction and grand promises did turn out to be horribly, lethally wrong. And, of course, since making that promise Bill Kristol has never been held to any standard whatsoever because men like Bill Kristol are members of the Beltway Insiders Club whose prime directive is protecting the reputations and livelihoods of members of the Beltway Insiders Club.
This is why I have occasionally reacted with asperity (look it up) as my Liberal allies threw themselves at Bill Kristol and men like him drunk-prom-date-fashion because, yeah, sure, on the one hand there's his record of a lifetime spent gleefully in the service of evil, hundreds of thousands of lives lost, nations ruined and a treasury looted all while Kristol maintained a constant barrage of slander and smirking lies that just kept escalating precisely because Bill Kristol has never been held accountable for anything...
...but in the other hand, we can't hold him accountable now because Trump!
So given Bill Kristol's very definite opinions now about how Republicans should apologize for encouraging "something really pretty bad", how do you suppose Mr. Kristol would react should anyone suggest that he apologize for using using his privileged media position to relentlessly pimp the Iraq War and to ferociously attack anyone who opposed or criticized him ?
Well lucky for you, chum, you don't have to guess because here is pre-Trump Bill Kristol back in 2014 answering that very question:
Bill Kristol Snaps At Calls To Apologize For Iraq War Support...Despite his history of being wrong about Iraq, Kristol has nevertheless seen his media bookings rise in the wake of the spread of militant group ISIS. On Thursday, CNN’s Erin Burnett asked him about Reid’s tweet. Kristol, unsurprisingly, made it clear he was an unrepentant hawk.“I’m not apologizing for something that I think was not wrong,” he said. “The war to remove Saddam was the right thing and necessary thing to do.”“Apologies would be in order for the neoconservatives who banged the war drums so disastrously, Bill,” fellow guest Carl Bernstein chimed in.“Hogwash!” Kristol replied. (Yes, he actually said “hogwash.”)
Here is post-Trump Bill Kristol less that two years ago reiterating his position:
At this point I know perfectly well that the fight to hold men like Bill Kristol accountable is over.
Nope. I dislike quasi-Stalinist demands for apologies. I've defended and will defend my views on Iraq, and Syria, and Milosevic, and the Soviet Union, and more, as you defend yours. How about a real debate on U.S. foreign policy--I'll ask for no apologies!--on a campus this fall? https://t.co/AdC0CelINz— Bill Kristol (@BillKristol) May 26, 2019