Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Why Voting Yes to Rice Does NOT = Weakness

in no way do i want Condi Rice as sec of state. but i think there is the issue of winning the battle vs. winning the war.

frankly i thought she should've been fired a long time ago for 9/11. she failed completely us.

an expert in russia, she was completely unprepared for the middle east & suffered from an arrogance that she really did not need to prepare any more. & we suffered the consequences with 9/11.

what's scary is that AGAIN it appears to me that she's under-prepared for the position of sec. of state. she has already undercut her position by alienating many of the countries she would have to deal with (venezuela, iran, north korea, etc...). she was antoganistic during the hearings to any view that deviated from the administration & furthermore, she never displayed any independence, the sense that she could EVER disagree with the admin & bush when she really needs to stand up to them (errr, like, say IRAQ!!!).

in effect she's still acting like an NSA head & not with the diplomacy of a sec of state. not exactly what you want in a sec of state.

so how do you vote FOR that??

frankly i would not have. & heck, maybe a good substitute for the yes vote would've been to abstain in protest.

but we couldn't cocoon ourselves here in this single nomination. let's look at the facts.

she was going to win the nomination. period. the political strength of the repubs combined with her impressive resume, her intelligence, her impressive public speaking skills, & of course the symbolic emotional appeal of being a black woman (& yes, it is there) -- all these combined to build an absolute win for the repubs.

to fight that the dems risked

  1. looking like sore losers,
  2. coming out of a bruising battling INCREDIBLY politically weaker,
  3. had/when they lost, the Dems would've found future battles that much more difficult (e.g., Gonzo), &
  4. alienating the public which does NOT like consistent losers.

so we had to look tough -- BE TOUGH -- without looking petulent in front of the audience (the conservative & mainstream & liberal americans) & we had to do this without undercutting our already diminished political strength.

to do this, we had to be informed & ignore political differences & be focused on non-partisan issues of national security.

& politically, we had to sow into the audience seeds of doubt concerning rice's credibility (& in turn bush's admin) all while looking open & fair to her -- seeds that we could continue to water & grow during the 2nd term.

& that is exactly what i think the dems did.

they came across much more informed & knowledgeable about the issues than did rice -- they had quotes from her, data from the field trainers, had flown to iraq to collect information all kinds of stuff that basically made rice look like a school girl being sternly lectured by her prof.

& they did it while looking like they took the high ground to the audience.

& yes, rice will be approved, but now they can be tough & heck abuse her (like the delay till next week)...

it was a very good, politically savvy start to a long war. the dems came out stronger not weaker from this.

& NOW that they approved her, they can go after Gonzo without looking like obstructionists.

Recession means that people's incomes, at the employer level, are going down, basically, relative to costs, people are getting laid off. Bush


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