Saturday, December 16, 2006

Good Cop, Bad Cop...

There seems to be an awful lot of Seanators and other 2008 Presidential hopefuls headed out to the Middle East these days, to "talk" with our enemies and go on "fact-finding" missions. This undermines our diplomatic efforts in a major way. Take Iran: The purpose of any kind of diplomacy on the part of the administration is to play the old good cop/bad cop game, with the U.S. Military as the bad cop. You know, speak softly/big stick and all that. The minute somebody else from our side comes into the conversation and decides to play nice, it immediately turns the Administration into the bad cop, shifting the discussion away from the military option. We need a united diplomatic front, in order to keep the military option in play. Our enemies know this, so they're more than happy to entertain some bumbling Senator or whatnot, and send him home with the message that they will cooperate under such and such conditions. It makes the entire situation less clear and more difficult to deal with. these politicians who do their own freelance diplomacy should be prosecuted and removed from office.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Ultimate Catblogging

He's not mine, but he's AWESOME!

ALSO: Dogs in bee costumes.

Rudy G. and the Law Enforcement Approach to the War on Terror

I'm on my way to the airport this morning, and have been thinking about the conflicting views of the Democrats and the Bush Administration on how to prosecute the War on Terror. Back in 2004, John Kerry described the WoT as a law enforcement operation, and since then, this theme has popped every once in a while in national politics. I've finally realized what bothers me about this. It's not that I object to a law enforcement approach per se, but I'm afraid such an approach as implemented by the current Democratic (and some Republican) leadership would be inflexible and, ultimately, not actually enforced. Living in NYC, I see the results of decent law enforcement every day, which, under Giuliani, included consitently punishing minor crimes like graffiti as well as taking on organized crime. The combination of more police, agressive prosecution of criminals of all types, "Broken Windows" policy, and use of information technology (CompStat) to identify emerging crime trends WORKS. And you know, sometimes it can look like a "war," since it is inherently agressive. Liberals in NYC had the same kinds of problems with Giuliani then as they do with the WoT now. They don't like the aggression, the "our way or the highway" approach to crime and criminals, the clearing out of strip clubs, etc. from bad neigborhoods. They hated it when he stood up for his police department, even when they did some terrible things. They always beg for more "understanding," but it was the law enforcement officials in NYC that understood that playing nice wasn't going to work anymore.

Based on this, I can see what has always impressed me about Rudy Giuliani, even before his heroic performance on and after 9/11. I hope he runs for President in 2008. He'll have my vote. I can live with an agressive, pull-no-punches law enforcement approach to the WoT. In fact, I'm not sure that that isn't exactly what we have now. I hope the Democrats push the "law enforcement" angle over the next two years, in an attempt to back out of the war without trying to win it. Such a redefinition of the WoT would allow Rudy G., or someone like him, to advocate agressive policies, and follow through on them if elected. I think the American people would get on board with someone like that.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

The Democrats Get the Keys/Eleanor Clift is an Idiot...

For the past howevermany years, the Democrat minority in congress has complained about not having power, and how the various policies of the Bush administration are destroying the country. It's seemed childish at times, in the sense that they've settled on blaming Bush for their troubles while refusing to offer any new ideas except for the assertion that whatever the Republicans are doing, they can do it better.
Like most people, when I was a teenager I wanted freedom from the rules my parents, school, etc. had imposed on me. To a kid, the freedom associated with having your own job, and getting the keys to Dad's car, etc. means're in control of your destiny, and for that, you're the coolest kid in school. However, when Dad hands over those keys, he says something about responsibility-if you're going to drive the car, if you mess it up, it's on you. This is such common sense that nobody questions it. Well, almost. James Taranto notes Eleanor Clift:

"Why should Democrats shoulder the burden of solving Bush's war when they've been left out of everything else?"--Eleanor Clift, Newsweek, Nov. 8

As of last night, the keys have been handed, in a sense, to the Democratic Party. It's not "Bush's war" anymore, if it ever even was in the first place. With power comes responsibility, and if you're not going to take responsibiliy, or if you do a poor job of it, the keys will be taken away again. Only a spoiled brat expects otherwise, Eleanor. Those of us who own the car (the American people) will be watching closely.

UPDATE: They're thinkin' along the same lines over at Hot Air. Unfortunately, there's a lot of growing up to do.

Thoughts from a bus ride

So I was on the M4 downtown today, since the subway was flooded, with a very chatty driver. He seemed to know almost everyone who got on the bus, and wasn't shy about expressing his views on last night's elections. He explained to one woman that he (and the rest of the union) got a pretty good turnout, although sometimes they had to pay people to vote (!?) Anyway, he went on saying that America is a great country because we finally have a woman as Speaker of the house (maybe), and that the Democrats are in control of Congress. Now, I don't claim to know what he was thinking the day before yesterday, but I know the type. Apparently, we went from Hell on Earth to a great country overnight, just because of the party affiliation of the majority of Congressmen and women. I don't buy it.

UPDATE: Beauty, eh?

You should read this.


I'm finally doing it. Blogging, that is. My decision to start spouting unsolicited wisdom in this small, dark corner of cyberspace has been a long time coming, but the reactions of people around me (both friends and strangers) to last night's election has prompted me to actually put my thoughts into writing for the first time. Thanks for stopping by, and I hope you come back.