Napoleon wrote that the logical end of defensive warfare is surrender.
Panicked Democrats who said, of Bush Administration enormities: "They're not playing fair -- they cannot be beaten, as they might do anything...", now chuckle "heh, heh, heh, let them destroy themselves." Both fall under the heading of passivity, and passivity will always be exploited. The bumper sticker reading "in Texas some village is short of an idiot" is an absolute announcement of surrender. The "idiot" and his administration have taken the keys to the kingdom, by exploiting, tactically and strategically, Democratic weakness, passivity and smugness. It is not the Republicans who are risible, but their opponents. It's as if a burglar broke into someone's house to steal the television and the homeowner insisted he stay, while he called his broker to make sure the thief also got the stocks and bonds.
Here is an op ed piece I wrote for the L.A. Times.