21 November 2008

Is Obama Epiphanes a hawk in dove’s clothing?

Many of those who voted for His Beatitude are wondering that. (H/T: Ed Morrisey.) As time goes on, they may find themselves wondering about a lot of things. It’s not like they really knew much about him (or his opponent) in the first place:

Getting back to the question: of course he’s a hawk. Ultimately, every statist is a hawk, whether implicitly or explicitly. A statist requires a state always on war-footing. He always needs a war to justify his massive centralist state. A shooting war does the job for a while, but it can’t last forever. But any war will do, a “cold” war against the spread of communism, a war on poverty, a war against lack of healthcare, a war on drugs, a war on crime (especially organized crime), on war against occupational unsafety, a war on terror, a war against anti-statists.

What is interesting is not so much that Obama is surrounding himself with people who supported the war. (He’s going to “discover” that the war is a bigger mess than Bush has let on [wink, wink] and we’ll have to leave the troops there for a wee bit longer.)What is interesting is how many journalists never raised the “gravitas” issue, when he selected Senator Biden (who voted to authorize the use of force in Iraq) as his running mate, like they did when President Bush selected Vice President Cheney. Also interesting is that, given the number of Clinton people His Beatitude is putting on his team is that no one is talking about four more years of Clinton. It makes sense, of course: they liked those eight years. And bear in mind, Clinton had his own war, which he fought from thousands of feet in the air.

NOTE: Regarding the You Tube clip above, to be fair, Zogby should have done a similar survey of McCain voters. I happen to think it highly likely that the ignorance presented here accurately reflects the typical Obama voter, especially if they were getting their news from Colbert and Moyers (or did that old man say Bill Maher?) My own interactions with both McCainiacs and Obamanistas, though anecdotal, just makes it more believable that the McCainiacs would have gotten those answers correct.

But ignorance is only part of the problem. The bigger problem was McCain himself. If you start by conceding the major issue to your opponent, you certainly give no reason for anyone to vote for you. McCain conceded the statist issue. They have different plans for federal involvement in healthcare, but they both fundamentally agree on whether there should be federal involvement If you start by agreeing that the government should act you shouldn’t be surprised if the guy offering the most government action wins. And on it went. McCain can say that he wants everyone to get rich, as he did at Saddleback Church. But we all know everyone can’t be rich. Then comes Obama, saying he thinks federal power should be employed to redistribute the wealth. It’s a slam-dunk. One guy wants the impossible; one guy offers the (seemingly) possible. Your opponent offers an income tax cut to 95% of Americans, and instead of pointing out that over 40% of Americans don’t pay income tax in the first place, you make repeated reference to pork barrel spending.

Ignorance is a beautiful thing, especially when your opponent can, with media help, improve its maximum effective range and when, given the rare opportunity, you offer no correction.


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James Frank Solís
Former soldier (USA). Graduate-level educated. Married 26 years. Texas ex-patriate. Ruling elder in the Presbyterian Church in America.
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