Yet today he makes some sense (in what is sure to be his annual "See, I'm really a liberal columnist who has to fight off all the big, bad conservatives" column).
This fatuous infatuation with the Constitution, particularly the 10th Amendment, is clearly the work of witches, wiccans and wackos. It has nothing to do with America's real problems and, if taken too seriously, would cause an economic and political calamity. The Constitution is a wonderful document, quite miraculous actually, but only because it has been wisely adapted to changing times. To adhere to the very word of its every clause hardly is respectful to the Founding Fathers. They were revolutionaries who embraced change. That's how we got here.
He even manages (sort of) to point out that President Obama's Liberal credentials are, at best, strained:
Similarly, only a spell can explain why much of the Republican Party insists on calling Obama a socialist. To apply this label to the very man who saved Big Finance, who rescued Goldman Sachs and the rest of the boys, who gave a Heimlich to the barely breathing banks, can only be explained by witchcraft or voodoo or something like that. It has caused the GOP to lose its mind. Obama did something similar to the American auto industry, saving it from itself. He did not let it fail or nationalize it, as a socialist would have done, but pumped cash into it so that -- this is me speaking -- it can fail later on.
Sounds great, doesn't it? Almost a defense of liberal policies in a town where the policies, and their defenders get few and far between as the weeks drag on.
My problem with believeing this, of course, extends to Mr. Cohen's fetish for defending the indefensible:
At the same time, we have to be respectful of those who were in that Sept. 11 frame of mind, who thought they were saving lives -- and maybe were -- and who, in any case, were doing what the nation and its leaders wanted. It is imperative that our intelligence agents not have to fear that a sincere effort will result in their being hauled before some congressional committee or a grand jury. We want the finest people in these jobs -- not time-stampers who take no chances.
The best suggestion for how to proceed comes from David Cole of Georgetown Law School. Writing in the Jan. 15 New York Review of Books, he proposed that either the president or Congress appoint a blue-ribbon commission, arm it with subpoena power, and turn it loose to find out what went wrong, what (if anything) went
right and to report not only to Congress but to us. We were the ones, remember, who just wanted to be kept safe. So, it is important, as well as fair, not to punish those who did what we wanted done -- back when we lived, scared to death, in a place called the Past.
Its a great place Mr. Cohen live in, where we as a nation can break our own laws, destroy probably innocent lives (on both sides of the torture chamber) and then run around calling the people who did it great patriots. And as long as Cohen stand by these words, I can't stand by him as a liberal.
So thanks for your annual broadside at consrvatives. It happens to all be true. Sadly, it does nothing to buff your images with real liberals.