Thursday, February 21, 2008

Punish Friends, Reward Enemies?

Rove, K. (2008). Obama's new vulnerability. The Wall Street Journal. February 21, 2008. Available online: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120355939956381797.html?mod=opinion_main_commentaries.

Karl Rove's new article on Barack Obama is partisan (of course), but his best paragraph also outlines an attack that Hillary Clinton will use to try to save her campaign, as well:

Mr. McCain, too, raised questions about Mr. Obama's fitness to be commander in chief. Mr. McCain pointed to Mr. Obama's unnecessary sabre-rattling at an ally (Pakistan) while appeasing our adversaries (Iran and Syria). Mr. McCain also made it clear that reining in spending, which is a McCain strength and an Obama weakness, would be a key issue.


This is a serious concern. While John McCain and Hillary Clinton have done hard work, such as supporting the Orange Revolution in Eastern Europe even beyond legislation, Obama's adaption of leftist rhetoric would make foreign states happier being our enemies than our friends. This position is typical of the anti-American left, and if Barack Obama actually believes it (as opposed to pandering to the liberal/left flank of his party that gets him his caucus wins), it is very dangerous.

A best-case outcome for Obama is that he will get us involved in some wars in Africa, helping us build up our SysAdmin Industrial Complex and increasing Army-USMC expertise in counterinsurgency and shrinking the Gap.

In other words, Obama's substance has been so weak, support for him on international relations have to hope that his race trump his rhetoric -- that his ancestry trump his actions.

And that's too bad.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

You're a big Barack supporter?... Name his legislative accomplishments... Can you name any?

Of course, if Obama's beliefs actually match his voting record (unlikely, I think), this would be a good thing. From Red State:



Relatedly, Adrian (through Google Reader) links to this bizarre Slate piece, which wonders why criticism of Obama as a liberal doesn't hurt him in the Democratic primaries and caucuses.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Will America get the debate out of Obama that we need?

This post is not about Barack Obama refusing to debate Hillary Clinton before the Wisconsin primary. Clinton's camp have been masterful at spinning debates to their advantage, so of course he wants to limit how much damage they can do. In this way Barack Obama is like George Bush in 2000: ineloquent in a debate format, and therefore rationally hesitant to submit to it.


Useful?


Rather, I'm thinking of the debate between the reasonable approaches of Barack Obama and John McCain that I used as justification for supporting Barack Obama for Democratic nominee. To enter the debate, Obama needs to keep his words and accept public financing.

I'm writing this because Obama is considering betraying those who supported him up to now and attempted to win the general election in an ad blitz.

I hope Obama stays true to his words. I hope his first act as Democratic nominee is not to stab in the back those supported him while he was fighting to get there.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Vote McCain. Vote Obama.

The most important moral issue of the 2008 campaign will be the murder of children -- that form of infanticide commonly called abortion. The most important national security issue will be federalism, our 5GW defense in depth against all enemies, observed and hidden. On both of these questions, institutional pressures will almost certainly make the Republican candidate the best choice, whatever his personal beliefs. But such between-group differences does not indicate which candidate from within each party is the best choice.

However, some thinking does. John McCain should be the next President of the United States.



Opposing McCain should be Barack Obama, the best choice for Democratic Party nominee for President in 2008.



America "needs" none of the candidates. We already have the people, the wealth, the rulesets to get by just fine until 2009. Likewise, few selections would be truly terrible. Indeed, of the major candidates only John Edwards would be an actual disaster.

Indeed, I don't agree with either Senator or McCain or Senator Clinton and many issues. And I may be closer on Hillary Clinton in foreign policy than I am to Barack Obama. But the fact remains: John McCain and Barack Obama are the best candidates for 2008, especially if they run against each other.

There are two reasonable approaches to our long war to shrink the Afro-Islamic Gap. One is to go on the offensive: roll back rogue states, building up the infrastructure needed to shrink the Gap. The other is to build a strong defense: move beyond the politics of fear and emphasize the things that make us strongest.

Over the years and decades to come, we will need both of these approaches. These perspectives will help us shrink the gap, building up what we do best while marginalizing the little American Right and the anti-American Left.

Other candidates will still help us when, but they will not be as good. Hillary Clinton's style is so bad that it will hurt the country. Mitt Romney does not have the stubbornness that is so valuable in negotiation. Joe Biden is a one-trick pony. Rudy Giuliani's place has been eclipsed by John McCain's rise.

In tone, seriousness, and importance, and wisdom, no Republican matches John McCain. And no Democrat matches Barack Obama.

Vote McCain. Vote Obama.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Clinton or Obama

Who would be less bad?

Who should I root against?

Friday, September 21, 2007

Struggles, both violent and political

There's something a little ironic about a rally in support of what everyone believes are violent criminals themselves joyously breaking the law:

This:

Wave after wave of marchers walked a long hot mile to Jena High School. There, with only a handful of police to stop them, they swept past the school's chain link fence and on to the school grounds.


and that:

But unlike the protests that became landmarks for civil rights when fire hoses and police dogs greeted demonstrators, the rally to support six black teenagers charged in a school fight had a festive yet laid-back air.

"It was a great day," said Denise Broussard, of Lafayette, La. "I really felt a sense of purpose and commitment, but it was also a lot of fun. I met great people and made some good friends."


The assault itself seems to be a case of honor violence, endemic among ex-confederate populations (both white and black). One wonders how much of the national attention is an attempt by Jessee Jackson's southern clique to sink the candidacy to half-white Barack Obama who, whatever he is, is not Dixie.

Update: Shannon Love ads his thoughts.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Preferences from the top tier

Republican Party
Preferred Winner: Rudy Giuliani. Great things on foreign policy, and his federalist conservatism is a welcome break from Bush's evangelicalism. Only drawback: uncertainty on judges.
Back-up Winner: Fred Thompson. An unambitious people-person with a conservative orientation, Thompson is the Bush '00 of '08. Drawbacks: Vague beliefs, comes across as old.
Please no: Mitt Romney. Mitt agrees with you on the issues. Because he's supported both sides of all of them.

Democratic Party
Preferred Winner: Hillary Clinton. If she governs like it was Bill's third term, thins would generally be alright.
Backup Winner: Barack Obama: A post baby-boomer President is attractive as such, as is someone with Barack's biography.
Please no: John Edwards. Can he possibly be serious about anything he says???

Generic Ballot
Preferred Winner: Republican Party.
At its wingnut extreme, the Republican Party is stupid. The Democratic Party and its extreme, though, is anti-American. I'll take idiotic over treacherous.