Political lamp is lit....
Off the top -- preliminary thoughts about 2008. It’s not too early to start examining the Democratic alternatives.
(Some other time we should look into some of the non-neocon and non-insane Republican alternatives, such as Senator “no pork” Coburn. Or John “I’m reasonable 90% of the time -and jibbering nuts 1% - care to risk it?” McCain. Or Barry “I’ve been dead for years but please dig me up so I can rescue conservatism from control by the demon-undead” Goldwater.
Feel free to weigh in here. At this point, left-right doesn’t matter to me anywhere near as much as feudalist antifeudalist. I will listen re: ANY candidate who will issue subpoenas, rescue the civil service and officer corps, unleash special prosecutors and return America to the 20th Century.
(A genuine and modern 21st Century is clearly too much to hope for.)
Among the Democratic choices, of course Senator Clinton is the front-runner. She will get big-gun support from her spouse, and she is a formidable politician by any standard, worthy of respect, her position as heir presumptive is just a bit too regal for my tastes. Count the number of times in our lifetimes in which the candidate of one or both parties was not crowned as a matter of rightful inheritance. Generally because of a Vice Presidential slot (a disastrous criterion, as it led to defeat in all cases but one) or because of a shared name with an earlier president. Actually, this may be the first time since Eisenhower vs Stevenson! (And Ike really was a “royal”appointment because he was... well... Ike.) Conclusion? We have deeper monarchial tendencies than we admit.
I’d much rather Senator Clinton earned it, on the basis of policy and ability to reach beyond 16 Blue States, giving America a chance not only to eject mad neocons. I am much less interested in a candidate who will wage “culture war” than one who will end it.
What are the alternatives?
Well. For a lengthy and in-depth appraisal of former Virginia Governor Mark Warner - who left office in that “red” Southern state with a whopping 80% approval rating, see:
Then there is the fellow who John Kerry should have chosen as his running mate, retired General Wesley Clark, whose outrageous competence in leading our successful Balkans Intervention should have won contrast points vs the devastatingly incompetent mess in Iraq. See: http://www.securingamerica.com/
I am sure we’ll be discussing this further. But for now - one piece of advice for all Democrat candidates and officeholders, at all levels, preparing for elections in 2006 and 2008. Have your staff prepare cogent and agile reaction sets, strictly on contingency, for you to use in case America suffers a major terror attack, or some other provocation, coincidentally during the run-up to election day. Yes, there is always talk about an “October Surprise.” But never was the situation more inviting for this sort of thing than right now. Especially with the prospect of one chamber or another suddenly becoming enlivened with a new majority, eager to unleash its power of investigative subpoenas. There are gigantic interests who are terrified of that prospect. Interests who might stop at nothing.
Does that sound paranoid? Look, even if a scenario sounds over-the-top, these days a reasonable person might at least prepare a little, just in case. Should something like this happen, do not stand there, stunned, like deer in the headlights! If and when such a blatantly obvious scenario begins to unfold, be ready - for example - to call upon the men and women of our intelligence communities to step up and save our Republic. Surely some of them will have the knowledge and patriotism to do what must be done. Blowing the whistle.
Finally.... Is there a chance that the Miracle of 1947 might happen again, only this time American Conservatives seeing their duty to address madness on their “side”?
Look up “It Didn't Work” by William F. Buckley in The National Review, Friday 24 February 2006 Another arch conservative and conservative archetype reporting that BushCo’s venture in Iraq has been a calamity. Sayeth one correspondent about this: ”Admitting “Game Over,” is the first step to getting real, obviously; and not a moment too soon when you consider that we have more time left with BushCo than Kennedy’s entire presidency. May the True Conservatives keep hammering away at these very scary fascists masquerading as Republicans. Next week, I’d like to hear John McCain and Chuck Hagel stage an “Emperor has no clothes.”
Buckley: “Mr. Bush has a very difficult internal problem here because to make the kind of concession that is strategically appropriate requires a mitigation of policies he has several times affirmed in high-flown pronouncements. His challenge is to persuade himself that he can submit to a historical reality without forswearing basic commitments in foreign policy.”
Reminder about recent postings!
About the yin/yang of a coming “technological singularity”:
About "human adaptability" vs cynicism:
A political rant about solving the problem of gerrymandering: American Democracy: More Fragile than we think
Another at http://www.davidbrin.com/contract.html re-appraises Newt Gingrich's 1994 Contract With America, considering how that masterful piece of political polemic might be used by the other side.