"How did it come to pass that an opposition's measure of a president's foreign policy was all or nothing, success or "failure"? The answer is that the political absolutism now normal in Washington arrived at the moment--Nov. 7, 2000--that our politics subordinated even a war against terror to seizing the office of the presidency." - Daniel Henninger - WSJ 11/18/05
"the slovenliness of our language makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts." - George Orwell

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

CNN/YouTube Democrat Debate Follow-up

Was it a success? Or was it just another debate but with a face on the question? Was it just wishful thinking on my part or was there a brief nano-second(?) of a bust to the right of the person with the first question (his left)?

Yesterday I had concerns about the YouTube angle of the debate making it more of an entertainment extravaganza and said, “I cringe to contemplate faux sincerity from the candidates in response to a question asked by a “real live” previously recorded video of an American citizen.

Having actually viewed the debate, I didn’t actually cringe at these home made video questions, but just the same the whole addition was kind of useless. Overall I thought the setting and tone of the “show” was good; it was actually better than I had expected. However (seven letter word for “but”), the content was “as expected,” which is unless you’re an easily convinced monkey there was nothing of any use.

Last night a couple hours after the “show” I was a guest on Political Vindication Radio with hosts Shane and Frank the authors of Political Vindication (archive here and previous visit here, entire archive here). As usual it was a lot of fun and I think you will find informative; even if you just agree. You can also listen to their weekly show “Live” every Wednesday nights at 6:00PM Pacific Time by going here.

I’m sure there are many opinions out there as to how things went, but one that I find interesting is from Byron York and his take on “Obama’s Bad Night,” at NRO. Yes, now when I think of it, he did come off as an amateur, but in my partisan way it is and was difficult to take any of them seriously.

Last night Shane, Frank and I did take notice of Senator Clinton’s (speaking of “Hillary,” was the questioner that used her first name a “Plant?”), response to the question regarding the “leadership” question answered first by Obama (the one York sees as revealing), her answer from CNN:

“Well, I will not promise to meet with the leaders of these countries during my first year. I will promise a very vigorous diplomatic effort because I think it is not that you promise a meeting at that high a level before you know what the intentions are.

I don't want to be used for propaganda purposes. I don't want to make a situation even worse. But I certainly agree that we need to get back to diplomacy, which has been turned into a bad word by this administration.

And I will purse very vigorous diplomacy. And I will use a lot of high-level presidential envoys to test the waters, to feel the way. But certainly, we're not going to just have our president meet with Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez and, you know, the president of North Korea, Iran and Syria until we know better what the way forward would be.”

Her response we agreed was pretty impressive, at least as impressive as an answer from a Democrat presidential candidate is concerned. What I find galling is the impression one gets and the easy skirting of a question, the answer to which everyone is impressed with.

We certainly wouldn’t want a new president jumping in with both feet in the ignorance of where those feet might land; but does this new president have to start at the beginning again? It sounds like we would be getting right back into the game of the “discussion” is the “fix.” We meet, therefore the problem is resolved. Where has a President “Clinton” been all these years while not in the Oval Office that she would really question or wonder what the intentions of an Iran would be? Has she not been paying attention? Has she been too busy as everyone else has been going over the same “we shouldn’t have invaded Iraq” mantra without realizing the time has passed and we’re now looking at the year 2007?

This is the main problem I find with our politicians these days, but especially so with the Democrat party politicians. What they have honed is the skill of avoiding responding and/or doing anything about something that may come back to haunt them. This is a part of the reason; I believe President Bush has gotten as much flack as he has. My belief is obviously naïve to a degree, but you can count on the fact that none of these candidates from the Democrat Debate last night will ever make a tough call as President Bush has with regard to Iraq.

We will instead jump on back to the good old days, when diplomacy alone was the answer; not so much because it gave us answers, but because the process was on-going and took time to bear fruit and allowed the politicians to make believe things were working for something, anything they said it was.

I don’t think the next president will have much time to “know what the intentions are,” before some serious decisions will need to be made. Will any of them have what it takes? Not from this group

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