It sometimes strays a little too far into snark for my taste (despite Hilzoy’s contention that that’s not the goal), but I mostly did enjoy this from Obsidian Wings: A Few Teensy Mistakes…
There’s a deeper issue at work here than just scoring points against the other side, and I’m impressed by someone like Rod Dreher (whose NPR commentary Hilzoy links to) being willing to confront more or less honestly his own error in supposing that invading Iraq was a good idea, and to consider how it was he came to be so in error.
But I agree with Hilzoy’s conclusion, in spades:
Again, I don’t mean this to be some sort of “I was right” triumphalism. What interests me is not so much who was right and who was wrong, but this particular version of being wrong — a version that involves not just error, but errors like “I didn’t realize until it was too late that I had to take reality into account”, or: “I didn’t fully appreciate the fact that making nice speeches isn’t all there is to being President.” And I’m also interested in why people seem willing to confess these kinds of profound error without any sense of intellectual shame, and why they continue to be given platforms in public life. Because until we find some way to ensure that we hear the opinions of people who know these sorts of things in advance, rather than having to learn them after hundreds of thousands of people have died, we are in deep, deep trouble.