Saturday, October 30, 2004

Pat Buchanan endorsing Bush

Pat Buchanan endorses Bush. This is not such a surprise, but I found it interesting to read anyway.

He starts out by saying that Iraq has been "the worst strategic blunder in our lifetime." He spreads the blame for that over not just Bush but also the people who talked him into it. In any case, Iraq is not the only issue on the table. He says, "Bush is right on taxes, judges, sovereignty, and values. Kerry is right on nothing."

That's a legitimate opinion (which I don't share), but the next argument from Buchanan is more interesting.
The only compelling argument for endorsing Kerry is to punish Bush for Iraq.
I think this is a lousy reason, and it puts the decision in the wrong context.

I'm not Bush's dad, and it's not my responsibility to punish him. Bush is my President, and it's my responsibility to decide who I think would be the best President in the next term. If I think Bush would be the best President (in spite of "the worst strategic blunder in our lifetime"), then punishment has nothing to do with it.

Then there's this:
If Kerry wins, leading a party that detests this war, he will be forced to execute an early withdrawal. Should that bring about a debacle, neocons will indict Democrats for losing Iraq. The cakewalk crowd cannot be permitted to get out from under this disaster that easily. They steered Bush into this war and should be made to see it through to the end and to preside over the withdrawal or retreat. Only thus can they be held accountable.
So, let me review the options:
  1. Punish Bush by voting against him.
  2. Hold Bush (er, the neocons) accountable by voting for him.
This again sounds like parenting to me (perhaps because I'm a parent). The argument here is, since Bush messed it up, Bush should clean it up. Have you learned your lesson, young man?

Maybe I'm reading too much into it. I encourage you to read it for yourself.
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