Words mean things
A four year-old named Isaac Chotiner, who posts on The New Republic's blog, has declared Joe Lieberman an "apparatchik" because Lieberman supports the 21,000 troop surge even though he said nice things about the initial 30,000 troop-surge proposal. Mr. Chotiner can be forgiven his inability to comprehend this, as he has only recently switched to pull-ups. But maybe one of the six year-olds over there could enlighten him as to the meaning of the word "apparatchik" and why Lieberman, who fits in with no party, is almost exactly the opposite of one. After all, if you're going to run an intellectual nursery school, you should do a little educating along with playtime, naptime, and snack.Hmmm...
The definition in my dictionary is "a member of an apparat" and the definition of apparat is "an underground political movement." Of course, it usually meant a Communist party loyalist, but I'm not sure how much more "underground" a political movement can get than being a party of one. And does anyone doubt Lieberman's loyalty to Connecticut for Lieberman?
Of course, apparat can also be defined as an "apparatus" and, if we take that definition, then Joe Lieberman is, as Chotiner shows, clearly a well-lubed cog in this president's war machine. Podhoretz just wants to bitch about words like this because he won't deal with the larger point that Lieberman is a reliable supporter of Bush's disastrous war no matter the facts on the ground or the words which have previously spilled from one side of his mouth or another.
Update: If Podhoretz really wanted to deal with ignorance in our midst, he could look to his fellow National Reviewer, Michael Ledeen, who complained about the "substantial number" of American troops in Iraq who are "sitting in air-conditioned quarters and drinking designer coffee."
And he had the balls to write this for a magazine which includes Jonah "I'm fat and can't fight because I need more money than the Army can pay me" Goldberg on its editorial staff.