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  • Quote of the Day

    Posted by Jonathan on March 25th, 2009 (All posts by )

    Put together, these three assessments are devastating, even though Cohen has not caught on yet to the fact that Obama is not a reformer, and never has been one. Applebaum has the best description of the underlying fault; Clinton, Obama, and Pelosi are not living in the real world, a world in which nations have histories that can not be reset, constitutions and laws that can not be ignored, and financial problems that can not be solved simply by giving more power to the federal officials who did so much to create those problems.
     
    One final, sobering thought: We are accustomed to discounting “campaign rhetoric”, accustomed to assuming that politicians do not believe much of what they say during a campaign. But we must, from time to time, consider the possibility, however unpleasant, that campaigners believe much of what they say. Clinton, Obama, and Pelosi may have believed the attacks they made on George W. Bush, who they depicted as both misinformed and misguided. That would explain why they seem to think that they can simply replace Bush and “reset” things to make them right.

    Jim Miller

     

    3 Responses to “Quote of the Day”

    1. Ginny Says:

      Miller’s assessment that our leaders are not living in a reality based community seems about right; the real world teaches us to appreciate limitations. Perpetual motion machines, free lunches, actions without consequences are illusions. Working within boundaries can be challenging but also stimulating – it is real work with real solutions. And do we really want to live in a world easily “reset”?

    2. Shannon Love Says:

      The fundamental problem that leftists have in foreign policy is there assumption that all problems in the world ultimately spring from the leftist’s own internal competition, the western right.

      The have this narcissistic view of the world that everything is ultimately all about them. That in turn means that all conflicts in the world are ultimately just extensions of the leftists’ own conflicts. From that point, they make the leap that they can resolve any conflict just by removing the right from power.

      This is clearly the cognitive model being used by generation of leftists educated in the late-60’s and 70’s. They have no intuitive or even articulated understanding that other polities have any other drives to act other than reacting to the actions of the western right. All leftists descriptions of foreign policy conflicts boil down to,”If we (by which they really mean the right) didn’t do ‘X’ then polity ‘Y’ wouldn’t do ‘Z’. The idea that other polities have internal motivations escapes leftists completely.

      They really believe that by displacing the right at the top of America’s power structure that they have removed all the serious causes of conflict. Since they will not longer do ‘X’ polity ‘Y’ will no longer do ‘Z’. Problem solved. They believe they have reset all the causes of conflict.

      They will be genuinely confused when things don’t turn out like they expect. When they fail, they will blame they historical actions of those on the right still contaminating their own efforts. They will never look at the internal motivations of the regimes that challenge us.

    3. Jim Miller Says:

      Thanks for the link and the thoughtful comments. Anne Applebaum deserves the credit for saying that the Obama administration may be in its own “virtual reality”, not me.

      But I do think she is making a fundamental criticism. (And one that Clausewitz would understand.)

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