February 28, 2017

Politics, Schmolitics

Four, perhaps related, thoughts:

1. Co-worker saying that abortion is better for the baby in some cases, i.e. if they're doomed to a life of poverty.

2. Civil libertarians were up in arms in the early '00s due to fear the Patriot Act would allow the government to search our library borrowing records. Within five years the government would kill American citizens overseas without much protest from the same civil libertarians.

3. There was a huge uproar over the cruelty of the Iraq sanctions before the Iraq War, but relatively little said of the thousands of Iraqis who died during the subsequent war.  More was said about the lack of armor US soldiers were receiving and the faulty intelligence on WMD.

4. There was great gnashing of teeth over the torture of terrorists, but not much over Obama's drone program that simply killed terrorists.

Seems like a culture of death to me.  And/or that suffering is seen as a much greater evil than death (especially when it involves library records).

*

Perhaps historians will look back at the presidencies of Bush and Obama not as leaders who took on the big issues of radical Islam and health care respectively, but as having missed the much more important issue of unifying the country.

It may be that no president can do that but should the polarization continue there's a chance that disunity will be the story, and that the culprits will be Bush and Obama (and possibly Trump, although one wonders if we're too far down that road now for it to matter).

Both Bush and Obama proved to be arrogant and willful: Bush, despite promising a humble foreign policy started two unwinnable wars and engineered an intrusive security state. Obama, despite promises of uniting the country, rammed health care through with only Democrat votes (having even to bribe some of his own Democrats to vote for it with kickbacks).

Obama's cool, aloof style and Bush's deafness to his father's wisdom suggest these are the most arrogant presidents in generations.  And that fact was hardly lost on Americas; Bush drove the left insane as Obama did the right.

Hillary and Trump both seem to continue the Obama/Bush pattern. Trump, self-evidently, and Hillary by the inability to admit she is cable of error.

Still, it seems America wants arrogant presidents. After all, Hillary and Trump won their party nominations and George HW Bush was one of the more humble of presidents in recent memory and got flattened in '92.

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