Response to Apparently, the Irish media caused 9/11
It was Belmont Club's "Wretchard", just above, who was referring
to "the Left", but I highly recommend that piece for a clearer idea
of what the post-Cold War Left means in general, if only by the
vacuum it leaves behind.
I've been a Left liberal all my life. I've never voted Republican
before. I disagree with Bush on nearly every domestic policy and
I totally reject the administration's environmental positions, if they
can even be called that. But history has recast everything now,
my entire hierarchy of priorities. And it's recast everyone else's
too: look at the big spending and departmental expansions of
the right in America, and look at the wave of protectionism on the
left which Europeans don't even seem to grasp yet (the latter
plan would penalize US companies for outsourcing to places
I saw "The day After Tomorrow" last night and realized to my
surprise that the panic-instilling scenario, ostensibly anti-Bush
in its pro-Kyoto intent, will have the reverse effect. Because Kerry
is seen as a flip-flopper and an opportunist whose message (?)
doesn't answer the immediate and appropriate sense of peril in
the American soul, the film will drive people closer to Bush's
simplistic clarity, poor weather notwithstanding.
The Dem's entire foundation, their fundamental principle right
now, is that the Bush administration didn't work with the
international community enough - which basically means the
European left generally (and not just the hardline socialist fringe
which has always struggled for recognition) .
What you don't find enough of in the media in the US is the
question of whether that widespread European complaint is
really worth listening to at all, I mean in light of the real world?
But the answer to that is implicit in American culture these days -
indeed we have a history of wariness - and is probably one of the
reasons that the fellow above is rankled by seeing the stars and
stripes flying everywhere. The advice that we hear from Europe
today seems to issue more from self-loathing (the point of
Wretchard's piece) than from any creative response to the
world's ills and any kind of realistic alternative to the war on
terror. None of what we hear rings true though there's a vocal
minority in the US that seems inordinately impressed with their
own sophisticated posturing.
No, to most Americans the European emphasis on employing
the UN in every instance just ducks responsibility by way of a
simplistic and relativistic formula. And that's precisely Kerry's
belief too. Though you're correct that if he were to win office the
appearance would be that nothing much had changed, the
Islamo-fascists would understand that something had changed.
And the balance of Americans know that they know, and they
also know that Europeans are sleeping!
Europeans become anti-American whenever there's a
Republican in office. Before Sept. 11/01 I remember how Bush
was villified in Ireland. I didn't vote for Bush, but the widespread
notions of how he "stole" the office showed no comprehension
of our rule of law. Other similar rumors combined to lessen my
regard for the political sophistication of the Irish generally, and
that was my preparation for comprehending the shrillness of
their anti-Americanism after the US was attacked and all through
the Afghanistan war.
I mentioned Edmund Burke above, and his contention that the
first duty of rulers and legislators is to the present, not to the
promotion of an ideal order that exists only in the imagination.
Perhaps the fantasy of a future order is appropriate to a
European mindstyle which is given to theoretical idealisms, but
that doesn't mean that Americans aren't being prudent by
Created By: timothy sweete