Applause? Give me a break. How would doing "something" about poverty, AIDS and the rest restore leadership in this country?
Richardson elaborated that we need to get a U.N. peacekeeping force there and that we need to respond with diplomacy. To quote the caveman on the Geico commercial, "Wwwwwhat?"
How about meeting force with force, Governor? At least Sen. Joe Biden recognized the folly of Richardson's answer and said, "Those kids will be dead by the time the diplomacy is over."
But no one in the Democratic field addressed why a military intervention in Darfur is more justified on humanitarian grounds than our continued presence in Iraq. Why do "progressives" seem to get exercised about death and tragedy where our national interests are not at stake, but not otherwise? Even if all the slander Democrats have disseminated about Bush were true, does that make the plight of the Iraqi people any less urgent?
Finally, when the candidates expressed their various proposals to establish arbitrary withdrawal dates, did the progressives wonder, much less ask, why we don't begin withdrawal immediately? If our presence is causing the problem, and if our troops are, in effect, dying in vain, why let them stay another minute beyond the time it physically takes to remove them?
It won't do to answer that we can't just pull them out without regard to the stability of the region because these candidates say we are causing the instability. But if they insist on taking the contradictory position -- that circumstances exist that militate against an immediate withdrawal -- how can they possibly know precisely when those circumstances will change enough to allow our withdrawal? If they can't -- and they can't -- then why do they propose such arbitrary dates, other than to appease their enlightened constituencies?
But making sense or being consistent aren't necessary for success at a Democratic debate or on a liberal talk show, like HBO's "Real Time with Bill Maher." What matters is that you say what the progressives want to hear. That's the ticket.
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