The Moose applauds politicians who sail against the wind.
Many platitudes are offered about the value of courage in politics. Unfortunately, that virtue is a rare commodity in American politics. Most politicians instinctively fear defying the conventional wisdom or the party line. When presented with an opportunity to put party before principle, they take a pass.
The Moose's two favorite leaders - Joe Lieberman and John McCain - stand out because they fearlessly take a stand for what they believe is right rather than what is politically safe. Joe has paid a price because he has defied the nutroots by refusing to retreat on his stance on the Iraq war. While others have capitulated, Joe has stood his ground.
And now, John McCain has once again chosen principle over expediency. Whether one agrees or disagrees with his stance on interrogation, it is clear that McCain has put country first. He eloquently writes in the Manchester Union Leader,
"History will vindicate us, even though many of us will no longer be around to read it. And when history records our victory may it also celebrate the fact that we fought an enemy who believed our values made us weak and discovered in the end that our faithfulness to our values was as important to their defeat as was the strength and courage of our armed forces.
"Fighting for our security alone makes this fight just. Fighting for the security of other nations as well makes it generous. Fighting for the ascendancy in the world of our values makes it noble. That is the burden and the honor history has offered us. So let us take care, just as we take care to minimize civilian casualties while our enemies deliberately kill the innocent, not to provide our critics with an excuse to doubt how seriously we take our obligations to abide by our values even in times of war, no matter how cruel, difficult or unusual that war."
Joe Lieberman and John McCain serve as role models for all politicians. There is far too much pandering and timidity in American politics.
We need leaders with gumption and guts. Like John and Joe. --