Almost Everything You Need to Know About Conservatives and Bowing

The Right has more outbreaks of faux outrage over President Obama and his bowing or appearing to bow or possibly thinking about bowing then the average teen has of acne. Lawyers, Guns and Money has some historical photos of presidents bowing to various dignitaries and heads of state, The Dwight D. Eisenhower Bowing Hour!. Sadly, No! also has some photos of Bush bowing – Their Memories Are Even Shorter Than Their Johnsons. A pundit from the L.A. Times, apparently in a cranky mood that mom forgot to bring his hot coco writes,

Obama’s breach of protocol is of a piece with the substance of his foreign policy. He means to teach Americans to bow before monarchs and tyrants. He embodies the ideological multiculturalism that sets the United States on the same plane as other regimes based on tribal privilege and royal bloodlines. He gives expressive form to the idea that the United States now willingly prostrates itself before the rest of the world. He declares that the United States is a country like any other, only worse, because we have so much for which to apologize.

Wrong on both counts. President Obama did not apologize for anything and did not breach any protocol. On the contrary bowing in Japan is a custom. One generally respected by visitors, Guide to Bowing

If you plan to live in Japan, bowing will become part of your daily routine–but these will be mostly casual, shallow bows that are more like exaggerated head nods. And the type of bowing most foreigners do is casual, polite bowing to someone who has provided a service or gift.

Bowing shouldn’t be looked upon as a sign of deference or submissiveness. It’s simply a way of showing respect–to customs, traditions, and people.

Bush and Abdullah
Bush and Abdullah holding hands

Holding hands  apparently is not the least bit muticultural.

Bush bows to Pope Benedict
Bush bows to Pope Benedict

The Pope is a religious figure but he is also head of state of a few square miles of land called the Vatican. Bush is not Catholic, why didn’t the Right, suddenly experts on foreign protocol manufacture some outrage over Bush, ” He gives expressive form to the idea that the United States now willingly prostrates itself before the rest of the world. He declares that the United States is a country like any other, only worse, because we have so much for which to apologize.” – Powerline Blog writing about Obama’s bow in Japan. So Powerline would agree that Bush’s bow to the Pope was a way for conservatives to “prostrate” the U.S. to the world.

Bush in China
Bush in China showing deference to a communist
Arrival of Pope Benedict at Andrews Air Force Base
Military salute for Arrival of Pope Benedict at Andrews Air Force Base 2008

Why Did Bush, who was commander-in-chief “prostrate” the U.S. military to the Pope on his arrival by having them salute a foreign head of state.

Bush groping German Chancellor Angela Merkel
Bush groping German Chancellor Angela Merkel

Never listen to a political movement’s lectures on  appropriate behavior that thinks its perfectly fine to grope foreign heads of state.

Scooter Santa Claus wallpaper

Scooter Santa Claus wallpaper

Glenn Greenwald reminds us that conservatives wake up every morning shaking in a cold sweat at the mere though of terrorists or they’re happy to exploit that fear, cultivate obsessive fears or a combination of those things, The Right’s textbook “surrender to terrorists” – “We’re too scared to have real trials in our country” is a level of cowardice unmatched in the world.

Understanding and Combatting Terrorism, USMC Major S.M. Grass, 1989:

Terrorism is a psychological weapon and is directed to create a general climate of fear. As one definition cogently notes, “terror is a natural phenomenon, terrorism is the conscious exploitation of it.”  Terrorism utilizes violence to coerce governments and their people by inducing fear.

[   ]…GOP House Leader John Boehner, condemning Obama’s decision to bring Khalid Sheikh Mohammed to New York for trial, yesterday:

The Obama Administration’s irresponsible decision to prosecute the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks in New York City puts the interests of liberal special interest groups before the safety and security of the American people.

Boehner has a tendency to break down in tears over projections of of his insecure ego so in his case its reasonable to assume the guy is a genuine basket case. If terrorists have little gold stars next to the names of the people they have managed to “exploit”, John and just about every well known conservative politician and pundit is on the list – mission accomplished they scared the BGs outta these folks. Abolish the Military Commissions and Prosecute Terrorist Suspects in Federal Court

Although some have defended the commissions as an efficient form of military justice, their track record in prosecuting terrorism cases has been abysmal. Since their establishment, the commissions have concluded only three cases, two after trials and one based on a guilty plea. During the same time period, the federal courts have tried more than 107 terrorism cases, obtaining 145 convictions. Several defendants have been sentenced to life in prison.

The only legitimate fear that conservatives could have is that our justice system actually works sometimes. Former New York  Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani(R) in a rare moment of mental clarity said of the convictions of the 1993 World Trade Center bombers,

“[M]any who were bruised by the traumatic event were certain that no verdict by a jury or punishment by a judge will exorcise the pain and terror that remain. … Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani declared that the verdict ‘demonstrates that New Yorkers won’t meet violence with violence, but with a far greater weapon — the law.’” [The New York Times, 3/5/94]