Friday, October 01, 2004

i promise, this isn't becoming one of those droning political blogs...but Brad Bloch (for you non-mockers, he is a professor at UW-Milwaukee, their mock trial advisor, and the ex-National Tournament Director for the American Mock Trial Association) made a post on that i think bears re-posting here.

Some of you apparently miss the North Korea point. There already is a multilateral coalition. Our partners in that multilateral coalition have sought the US to do bilateral talks with the North Koreans. The Cheney-Bush Administration has refused to entertain bilateral talks and, in the mean time, North Korea has gained additional nuclear warheads.

My question is how long these Republicans think that their repetitious games can have steam. Flip flop my ass. The GOP candidates pledged no nation building in their 2000 campaign. Bush could not wage real war after 9/11 against terrorists because terrorist networks are too decentralized to permit the victories needed to sustain support for a war. So, instead, the Cheney-Bush Administration tried to sell an Iraq war to civilized nations which were too bright to get sucked into attacking Iraq while claiming to hunt for a Saudi terrorist band.

A forty-nation coalition is squat. My gosh, Costa Rica has withdrawn and now its 39. But the US has 90+% of the coalition casualties and 95+% of the coalition's costs. That the American public puts any credence on the Cheney-Bush "coalition" is probably the terrorists' favorite news. It says "imbeciles versus terrorism."

I wonder whether the so-called "news media" will ever get around to doing its job and actually provide a check to the Cheney-Bush "flip-flop, mixed messages" tripe. There's only one major party candidate who has itemized his steps in winning the real war on terror and in normalizing Iraq after another candidate has led our nation into chaos. Instead of demanding more steps from Kerry, the media ought start demanding the first announcement of steps from Cheney-Bush. What is the Republican exit strategy?

Before this debate, there was a lot of discussion about this being a joint press conference rather than a debate. That discussion was wrong. We saw a debate, indeed. I know a little about debate after running 23 years on debate circuits. He who wins debates must clash and extend the arguments. Bush demonstrated that he was incapable of extending. Kerry easily won this debate when Bush "dropped" (as we debaters say): cut police/fire, has not protected bridges, tunnels, subways, screens no cargo in planes, checks less than 5% of containers entering the nation, 35 to 40 nations more capable of proliferating than Iraq, Iran & North Korea pose a greater threat than Iraq if one applies the Cheney-Bush rationale for unilateral intervention, Bin Laden a higher priority than Saddam, no exit strategy which was precisely the reason Bush I did not proceed to put us in the crisis that Bush II delivered.
And on and on.

By the way, what do these Republicans speak of as "mixed messages?" It seems to me that Cheney-Bush proceeding for Halliburton while 2/3 of civilized nations will not join the Republican "coalition" is the ultimate mixed message. Message 1: Those not entirely dependant on US largesse will not support aggression toward Cheney defined "terrorists." Message 2: It is the US that will indiscrimately label all as Muslim and, therefore, terrorist while indiscriminately killing innocents. (Bush I was quite the targeted strikes on Saddam's military. Cheney-Bush II pinpoints nothing.)

i guess i have one beef with this, that's it. i wouldn't say kerry "easily won" the debate for the reasons he listed, but i do think those factors helped contribute to any narrow victory he did obtain. i can say he didn't easily win the debate because i have so little faith in the american public right now...bush did have some nice little sound bites, and in any practical sense, making the better arguments doesn't win you crap--only an increase in public approval does. we'll see what the polls have to say, the ABC and CBS polls last night both had kerry "winning" the debate in the eyes of the public, but not by any shocking margin (i think the ABC poll had kerry "winning" over bush by about 9%, CBS i don't recall). that still doesn't say anything about swaying votes. anyway, we shall see.

other than that...i think his commentary is dead-on.

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