Saturday, November 08, 2008

Kurds Congratulate Obama

The Kurdistan Regional Government, the very people Obama was willing to abandon back in 2006, congratulates him on becoming our next President. They write:
“The next Administration, like the present one, can continue to count on the partnership of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) to bring progress to Iraq. The Kurdistan Region remains America's best friend and ally in support of a democratic, federal Iraq. We are proud to have fought side-by-side with American and coalition forces to remove a tyrannical dictator.

We deeply appreciate the many sacrifices of the US military and the American people in Iraq. No American soldier or civilian has been killed in the Kurdistan Region since the liberation of Iraq in 2003. And all the while, we have demonstrated that a democracy based on human rights and economic opportunity can thrive in the Middle East.”

They also have kind words for John McCain.
“We offer a warm acknowledgment to Senator John McCain, an American hero and long time friend to Iraq and the Kurdistan Region…”

Angelina Jolie on Darfur

Angelina Jolie, making an excellent case for justice and involvement in Darfur at the Council on Foreign Relations, and the roll of human rights and the international community in that region.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

The Onion takes a funny swing at Obama supporters.

Obama Win Causes Obsessive Supporters To Realize How Empty Their Lives Are

Obama Already Pissing Off Jihadists


The “Electronic Intifada” has posted a piece criticizing Obama for picking Rahm Emanuel, a Jewish supporter of Israel to be his Chief of Staff. That’s a good sign in my opinion. They write:
In Congress, Emanuel has been a consistent and vocal pro-Israel hardliner, sometimes more so than President Bush. In June 2003, for example, he signed a letter criticizing Bush for being insufficiently supportive of Israel. "We were deeply dismayed to hear your criticism of Israel for fighting acts of terror," Emanuel, along with 33 other Democrats wrote to Bush. The letter said that Israel's policy of assassinating Palestinian political leaders "was clearly justified as an application of Israel's right to self-defense" ("Pelosi supports Israel's attacks on Hamas group," San Francisco Chronicle, 14 June 2003).”

Update:
The Hufftards hate this pick too. Yet another good sign.
One commentator said:
“But... After the elections who need the voters?

I wonder why he didn't pick Joe Lieberman for Chief of staff...
That sounds like a fine idea to me.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

So it Begins...

According to Fox News, some unnamed McCain staffers claim that Palin was not only unable or unwilling to understand policy matters; she also (apparently) didn’t know Africa was a continent and which nations were involved in NAFTA. Since this is all unconfirmed rumors at this point, I would take this with a grain of salt.

But if true...good God...

A Delusional Republican Talking Point

Abe Greenwald at Commentary argues that little could have been done to defeat Obama. He was simply too charismatic a politician to overcome and so deep soul searching isn’t required by Republicans. He writes:
“The GOP shouldn’t get too distracted with questions about how they need to rebuild or reinvent. They just came up against a truly extraordinary politician.”
This is truly a sad and delusional argument, and if it is the direction the Republican Party takes in the next few years, they can expect to lose future elections. Ramesh Ponnuru rightly argues:
“Democrats deluded themselves in the 1980s that Ronald Reagan's success owed to some spell he had put on the electorate, and some Republicans thought the same thing about Bill Clinton. Political talent matters, but it is not everything.”
Democrats also deluded themselves into thinking they lost to Bush in 2000 and 2004 due to dirty tricks and Rove styled attacks. They were wrong, and that continued unwillingness to confront the very real problems with the Democratic Party will have lasting effects on the organization.

Perhaps that sounds silly coming the day after a landslide victory for the Democratic Party. They have every right to take their victory lap and celebrate a campaign well done, but being gifted with complete control of government isn’t going to deliver the rosy future Democratic activists envision. The Democrats may have their day in the shade, but the splits in their party will also become apparent as the varying wings of the party look to capitalize on their newfound power. Talk of the Republican civil war will likely be the main story in the coming months, but the divisions in the Democratic Party are as serious and destructive as those in the GOP. Now that the Dems have everything they could possibly want, we will start to see how little there for the party’s base to agree upon.

David Frum makes the point I have been making for the last year: that the Republicans need to put the social conservatives in their place if they expect to return to power. He writes:
“So the question for the GOP is: Will it pursue [college educated Americans]? To do so will involve painful change, on issues ranging from the environment to abortion. And it will involve potentially even more painful changes of style and tone: toward a future that is less overtly religious, less negligent with policy, and less polarizing on social issues. That’s a future that leaves little room for Sarah Palin – but the only hope for a Republican recovery.”

Finished

Obama is the next President of the United States of America. I sure hope he is ready for it.

When I cast my vote a few weeks ago, I reluctantly picked Obama, generally over McCain’s poor handling of the economic crisis and selecting Sarah Palin as his VP. The fact that the war in Iraq is winding down, and that the democratically elected government there is holding, allowed me to overlook Obama’s opportunistic and unprincipled stance on Iraq over the last few years. I still have major reservations concerning Obama’s opportunistic internationalism, and my piece on his foreign policy pronouncements holds.

I find the entire “hope” and “change” message to be nothing more than a very calculated political ploy, yet it has resonated with many. Those who believe Obama will radically change the way government operates, or believe that the enthusiasm the world apparently shares for his candidacy will translate into major international adjustments, is going to be gravely saddened soon enough.

Perhaps every generation needs to have a figure they raise up to unrealistic standards, and when they fail to meet such lofty goals and dreams, it provides the catalyst needed to create a whole new generation of rational minded men and women.

McCain gave a great concession speech, and even though he didn’t receive my vote in the end, I still have a great respect for this man. Not just because he was a decorated war hero. Not just because he worked across the political divide for decades for the good of the nation. Those things, among many are why he is good man.

But when it came to Iraq, when most politicians of lesser stature were so willing to surrender the country to theocrats and fascists, McCain publicly and vocally defended the mission there, and would not yield in his public support for it. He prominently said he would sacrifice his political career to win the war there, and that took more fortitude than most politicians possessed, particularly when things were going so poorly in Iraq.

However, today belongs to Obama, and to the American people. I don’t mean for that to imply, as many liberal commentators do, that I would be less proud of America if they elected John McCain. If Obama had lost the election; it wouldn’t have been because America is a racist, stupid country. There are numerous reasons to be fearful of what an Obama presidency will do for this country and the world. To slander all McCain voters as reactionary racists is so brainless; attempting to dispel the very argument gives it more credence than it’s worth.

But America should be proud of this moment. Within forty years, we went from a racially segregated society where blacks were second class citizens, to electing a black man to lead us and the free world.

That alone, says a lot about the malleability of the United States. It’s a testament to its radical foundation, and its ability to so rapidly and deeply change its direction.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

No on Prop 8

I voted “No” on Prop 8 (or rather, saying yes to legally upholding gay marriage in California), but this ad is so over the top, it’s hard to believe it was created to begin with.

Even the progressives have folks they have no problem discriminating against.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Elsewhere

Marcellus Andrews at Dissent talks about the future goals of an American economy run by liberal economic agenda.

Terry Glavin is in Afghanistan, and has been writing about his journey there.

Johnny Guitar wrote a nice piece titled “When resistance is futile.”

In the National Interest, we have a review by Jacob Heilbrunn of a Robert Kagan interview, and a few months back published a debate between neo-conservative Joshua Muravchik and “realist” Stephen M. Walt. Well worth a read.

David Horowitz criticizes
Christopher Hitchen’s recent piece on Palin.

More on the Republican Civil War

My recent post concerning the coming crisis in the Republican Party between its centrists and conservatives brought about a fine dialogue, and has been discussed and built on elsewhere. If you are interested in the debate about the future of the Republican Party, check out the Jonah Goldberg and Ross Douthat discussion at Bloggingheads.tv titled “the Conservative Civil War.”

McCain on SNL

Not bad John.