Friday, November 18, 2005

Wall Street Journal and Iraq

Today's Wall Street Journal editorial got me going. I sent an letter to the editor, but they never print my letters. Here's what I wrote:

Dear Sirs:

In today's (11/18) editorial, you repeatedly refer to the lessons of Vietnam. One way you put it is "Don't fight wars you don't intend to win."

The biggest lesson of Vietnam was that we should not have gone. Reading your editorial, it would appear you think the mistake in Vietnam was backing out.

It's not whether you "intend to win". In a democracy, it is whether you believe public support for the war will last as long as necessary. This war never had the full support of the American people, and we never should have gone.
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While I'm at it, here's another one I wrote back in April:

As a criminal defense lawyer, I'm tired of seeing executives whine about Eliot Spitzer's prosecutorial tactics (Holstein, "Manager's Journal", 4/19/2005, page B2). These CEOs should spend a week in local criminal courts watching how ADAs treat urban and trailer park defendants. Spitzer's tactics are mild by comparison. The AG's conduct does not create a presumption of guilt. A perp walk, where the
defendant is marched in front of TV cameras wearing a jail jumpsuit
and chains, is far more effective.

CEOs do have a right to due process. They can demand a trial. Unlike
most defendants, they don't have to sit in jail for 6 months while
they await that trial. Also unlike most defendants, CEOs usually get
deals with no jail time and with shareholders paying the bills.

While I think little of Spitzer running for Governor, his use of the
AG's office to support his political ambitions is no worse than any
other elected official. If his aggressive conduct is making executives
more careful, maybe that's a good thing.
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