Another Disappointed Democrat

At TheStreet.com, Washington Center for Politics & Journalism head, "libertarian Democrat," and Reason contributor Terry Michael weighs in on Barack Obama's foreign policy:

President Obama has been unable to stand up to the war hawk "liberal internationalists," as they like to call themselves, in his own party—more accurately described as "Neo-Con Lites." I know them well. They are from my generation of Democratic operatives. Political careerist baby boomers with draft deferments, who raged against the Vietnam madness in the 1960's, but as they approached their own sixties forgot the lessons of that tragedy as they devised political strategies to make us look tougher, so we could win presidential elections by wooing back the Nixon and Reagan Democrats, the World War II "good war" voters, who are now mostly not voters....because they are mostly dead.

Whole thing here.

Matt Welch on disappointed liberals. Me on Obama being disappointing.

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  • Scott66||

    Almost all the Neo-Cons are also RINOs. They simply gravitated to the party in power so they could be influential. Their non-foreign policy positions tend to be slightly to very liberal.

  • TheNino85||

    So true. I wonder how many people even know that the original neo-conservatives were called "neo" precisely because they were ex-liberals.

  • ||

    The neocons are political lampreys, who drain every last drop of blood from one fish and then move along to the next one that comes by.

  • Apostate Jew||

    And how did they gain the power to influence, nay control, the foreign policy of the United States no matter the party in power?

    The "neocons made us do it" argument is idiotic.

  • Mad Max||

    'the World War II "good war" voters, who are now mostly not voters....because they are mostly dead.'

    Dude, the President is from *Chicago,* where a technicality like death is not an insuperable bar to voting.

  • ||

    "libertarian Democrat" - always good for a giggle.

    as they approached their own sixties forgot the lessons of that tragedy

    Which lesson, and which tragedy? The lesson that you should only fight wars to win, and not abandon your allies to ruthless totalitarian foes? Or some other lesson?

  • ||

    "libertarian Republican" is pretty ludicrous in its own right.

  • CavMedic||

    Kelo should have killed off the last "libertarian Democrat". I can see how libertarians could be disgusted with the Republicans, but at least if it had only been Republican appointees to the bench that abomination would have gone down.

  • Death Panelist||

    Obama stated throughout the campaign his support for the war in Afghanistan, so I guess these people are disappointed that this is the single campaign promise he hasn't abandoned.

  • ||

    He didn't say he planned on "doubling down" like this in Afg during the campaign. Though the current two-headed War on Terror strategy seems more like a game of "Go Fish" than poker at this point.

  • ||

    He didn't say he planned on "doubling down" like this in Afg during the campaign.

    He said that Bush had ignored Afghanistan to focus on Iraq, and let Afghanistan get out of control. He also said that Afghanistan was the real war, the one that was actually connected to 9/11. That at least strongly suggests moving troops from Iraq to Afghanistan. Sure, people chose to ignore it because they thought it was a cynical strategy, but perhaps they were the fools.

  • ||

    "doubling down" like this in Afg during the campaign. Though the current two-headed War on Terror strategy seems more like a game of "Go Fish" than poker at this point.

    The only poker with doubling down that I'm familiar with is certain video poker machines. Did you mean to say blackjack?

  • PokerInTheRear||

    "Raising the stakes" or even "Upping the ante" would have been more appropriate cliche terminology for poker.

  • ||

    True, but everyone says "double down" (or "all in") in situations like this. Not a card player myself, I was upbraided for implying "double down" was a poker phrase a few weeks ago when it's really from blackjack.

    Personally, the blackjack metaphor I'd like to implement for AFG and IRQ is "split".

  • ||

    so we could win presidential elections by wooing back the Nixon and Reagan Democrats, the World War II "good war" voters, who are now mostly not voters....because they are mostly dead.

    Yeah, fighting little wars never helped Clinton, did it?

  • Old Mexican||

    Me [Gillespie] on Obama being disappointing.

    I have never been disappointed with Obama - he is acting in exactly the manner I expected: Like a clueless leftist radical with no brain (sorry if I was being redundant.)

  • ||

    There's very little 'lite' about them. Though they're usually more dishonest and less interested about connecting their wars to U.S. interests (feature, not a bug).

  • ||

    I'm curious as to how the Rush-clone squawk radio hosts are gonna handle this one: on the one hand, they looooooove the idea of war in Afghanistan and Iraq; on the other, Obama, virtually by definition, can do nothing right. So how many neocon commentators' heads will explode over this? Not enough of them I can tell you...

  • tarran||

    Oh easy.

    They'll complain that Obama isn't sending enough American soldiers to die pointlessly in the grave of empires. They'll accuse him of not wasting enough American taxpayer dollars on converting expensive electronics into shrapnel.

  • MJ||

    "Nominated because he opposed an elective war and elected because he opposed an old warrior,..."

    Obama publically decried the war with Iraq, not the war with Afghanistan. In fact, he campaigned that the Bush adminstration was concentrating on Iraq to the Afghan campaign's detriment. For what Obama has done to be a betrayal of his principles, one must assume he was lying in first place. Terry Michael fooled himself about who Obama was, Obama did not fool him.

    Radical pacifism is a utopian position, not one for serious thinkers and people who have to make policy in the real world.

    The problem with Obama's policy is that he is somewhat splitting the difference between the hawks and the pacifists, which will probably result in failure. Either Obama thinks there are important goals to achieve in Afghanistan and they are doable or he does not. If he does not, increasing troop levels there is foolish and he should be making for an orderly withdrawal. If he does, then putting an arbitrary time limit on achieving those goals is utter foolishness or is a dishonest sop to the ridiculous anti-war elements in his political coalition. This mixed policy will likely get our people killed for no good result. Either commit to success or get out, half-assed does not work.

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