Having spent a good bit of ink and space critiquing the president's war policy, I decided to do what many voters do at this point in the election cycle: pay close attention to what politicians say. Take House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, for instance. On "60 Minutes" recently, Pelosi offered her take on the so-called war on terror -- which does not, she explained, extend to Iraq.
"Do you not think that the war in Iraq, now, today, is the war on terror?" Lesley Stahl asked.
"No. The war on terror is the war in Afghanistan," Pelosi replied.
"But don't you think the terrorists have moved into Iraq now?" Stahl continued.
"They have," Pelosi agreed. "The jihadists (are) in Iraq. But that doesn't mean we stay there. They'll stay there as long as we're there."
We stay. The "jihadists" stay. We go. They go. (Never mind resident death squads.) There's a certain logic to Pelosi's strategy that is practically feasible -- so long as the tooth fairy isn't busy. But such fairy tales are no substitute for foreign policy.
Not that Pelosi fancies herself a grand strategist. "Ask Nancy Pelosi to describe herself," says Stahl, "and the first thing out of her mouth is that ..."
Suspense: Is it that she is the increasingly familiar face of the Democratic Party? Potentially the first woman Speaker of the House?
Nope. That first thing out of Pelosi's mouth is that "she's a mother of five and a grandmother of five." This is quite often the first thing out of her mouth -- so often, perhaps, that its very repetitiveness may explain a recent news item. Earlier this month, while demanding a House Ethics Committee investigation in the ex-Rep. Mark Foley scandal, "Pelosi was booed by Republicans when she mentioned that she is a mother of five and a grandmother," reported the Seattle Post Intelligencer.
Now I can relate. After all, it's countdown time to Election Day, Iraq is chaotic, our own country has no control of its borders, and the leading elected Democrat in the land wants voters to know she's ... a mommy and a granny? Back to Stahl's interview: "As she's poised to go down in history books if the Democrats win the House -- suddenly (thankfully) a genuine "if" again -- "what Nancy Pelosi wants you to know is...."
No suspense this time. In these, the politics of personal distraction, what Pelosi wants you to know are not her far-left views on immigration, national defense, homosexual marriage, etc. "When it comes to her real goal in life, she's just like any other woman her age," Stahl, um, reports. "I'm a grandmother," Pelosi says. "It's great. It's fabulous. It was my goal in life and now I've achieved it."
How great; how fabulous -- but Speaker of the House? This is the voice of the professional woman -- or, rather, the Professional Woman, the kind of gal who brings sex (her own) into everything. Even into the job of Speaker of the House. "I think the fact that I am a woman will raise expectations in terms of more hope in government, and I will not disappoint," Pelosi "explained" to the Los Angeles Times. Oh, brother.
There's more: "The gavel of the speaker of the House is in the hands of special interests, and now it will be in the hands of America's children. I don't mean to imply my male colleagues will have any less integrity.... But I don't know that a man can say that as easily as a woman can."
Frankly, I don't know that a man can say that as easily, either -- or anyone else for that matter. And how did "America's children" get into it?
This is another one of Pelosi's precious catch-phrases, usually connected by suffering to Republicans, as in: "Mr. Speaker, as we leave for this Christmas recess, let us say, `God bless you' to the American people by voting against this Republican budget and statement of injustice and immorality, and let us not let the special interest goose get fat at the expense of America's children."
Say "God bless you" by voting against the GOP budget? Interesting way of worshipping Pelosi's got there. Meanwhile, if the lady has her way, the gavel will soon be in the hands of "America's children." And that would surely mean the nation's goose is cooked.