To give you an idea of how much you have to be in the tank for President Obama in order to be the typical host on an MSNBC program, on Tuesday, Krystal Ball and Toure Neblett - two far, far-left commentators! - actually came out in support of the just-released Justice Department memo that made the legal case for drone strikes against Americans.
Be sure to strap yourselves in tightly before you enter the bumpy ride in this bizarre parallel universe (video follows with transcript and commentary):
TOURE NEBLETT: We're at war with al Qaeda right now, and if you join al Qaeda, you lose the right to be an American. You lose the right to due process. You declare yourself an enemy of this nation, and you are committing treason. And I don't see why we should expand American rights to people who want to kill Americans, who are working to kill Americans, who are committing treason. This is not criticizing the United States. This is going to war against the United States.
Yes, that's the far, far-left Toure Neblett sounding much like a conservative on September 11, 2001.
Now in fairness to some liberal commentators on MSNBC, co-host Steve Kornacki pushed back on Neblett's sudden bout of hawkishness and did so with a gusto:
STEVE KORNACKI: What about the 16-year-old who was killed?
NEBLETT: What do you mean what about the 16-year-old who was killed?
S.E. CUPP: Who was also an American citizen.
KORNACKI: There was a 16-year-old who was an American citizen born in Denver who was killed by one of these authorized drone attacks.
Check out the face on Neblett who seemed completely unaware of this incident:
NEBLETT: What’s that mean? We’ve said that, we have criticized that all the way through.
CUPP: He’s not talking about civilian casualties.
NEBLETT: Yeah, we’re not talking about civilian casualties.
KORNACKI: No, no, no, no. This is the son of al-Awlaki.
CUPP: Of al-Awlaki.
KORNACKI: The decision was made that he should die.
After gathering himself, Neblett offered some more post-911 hawkishness:
NEBLETT: We, if we have people who are working against America, then they need to die, because they are plotting to kill Americans. And if we don't protect Americans…
CUPP: But based on what evidence, Toure? This is the problem.
KRYSTAL BALL: Well and, look…
CUPP: Where's the evidence?
Now enter the perilously liberal Ball:
BALL: And I think the thing here is, I mean this is such a complicated issue. It’s easy to have a black and white view of it. It is one of the definitely falls in those areas of gray, and I think there's two questions here. One is the sort of is it legal? Is it moral? Is it ethical? Is it something the United States should be doing in general? The other question is one of transparency.
And, I'm, I’m on board with Toure. I think, you know, if we are at war with al Qaeda, and part of the challenge here is that is a war that does not have the borders of a traditional war, and that is what we’re grappling with really here, that's part of the struggle. But the part that I'm uncomfortable with is, you know, why couldn't this memo have been made public to start with?
So, Ball doesn’t have a problem with the constructs of a memo unilaterally determining it legal for the White House to kill Americans with drones - just that it wasn’t released in a timely fashion.
You think that would have been her view if Obama had an “R” next to his name. Would Neblett be so gung ho about this policy and the DOJ’s conclusions if Bush were still in the White House?
Rhetorical questions both of course, but the hypocrisy wasn’t done, for a few minutes later, Neblett was once again going to transform into the most hawkish person on the planet:
NEBLETT: We are in a post geographical war with people who don't wear uniforms and don’t play by the traditional rules of war. If we don't attack them in the best way that we can…
CUPP: No one doesn’t want to attack them.
KORNACKI: Where are the limits?
KORNACKI: Where are the limits to this memo that it has to be somebody who’s part of al Qaeda, it has to be something that’s part of the War on Terror as it's now defined? That’s the problem with this memo is there are no limits. It could be anybody anywhere according to this memo.
CUPP: We have no leg, we will have no leg to stand on when this technology – and when, it’s not if – when this technology turned and used on us or our allies. We will have no leg to stand on legal or otherwise if we don’t codify any of this.
NEBLETT: No, that's not true. That's not true at all.
CUPP: It’s completely true.
NEBLETT: Al Qaeda attacked this nation. We are attacking al Qaeda back.
CUPP: A 16-year-old is not al Qaeda.
NEBLETT: There is no equivalence to Yemen attacking us.
CUPP: 700 innocent children were not in al Qaeda, Toure. That's what's happening.
Far, far-left MSNBC hosts, in order to support Obama, have completely abandoned the anti-war dovishness they possessed when Bush was in the White House.
How much more of their souls are they going to have to sell in the next four years to continue to support policies they disagree with in order to shill for this president?
P.S. Kudos to Kornacki for being the lone liberal on the set actually willing to put policy above party. Bravo.