23 January 2008

Late to the Fight

I was surprised last night when I saw that Senator’s Obama and Clinton apparently had a nasty spat during the CNN debate on Monday night. I missed the whole thing because I tuned in late and only caught about the last ten minutes of the “stand up” session, followed by about 30 minutes of the “sit down” session.

The “stand up” portion that I watched only concerned how quickly the candidates would pull out of Iraq. There was no talk of winning; there was no talk of basing there (or even “over the horizon”. Indeed, the candidates howled at the idea of having bases in Iraq at all. They all said, as I remember it, that the US did not need to be there, that the US should not stay there, and that the time to come home is now – but as “safely” as possible.

It made me wonder if these same candidates would precipitously pull US troops out of Japan, Korea, Germany, the UK, and Turkey. I mean, troops in those places certainly are remnants of battles long past, wars long over. But still, our troops are there. Never mind our folks in Kuwait, Qatar and Bahrain. But of course, this kind of question would never make it into a Democrat debate. It’s all “run fast and mass health care!”

The “sit down” portion was all huggy-kissy – enough so that my wife and I were both thinking it was some kind of love-in. What’s more, the whole “sit down” portion that I watched was all about race and gender. The candidates would say how the politics should not be about race and gender, and then moan on about it for the next 2-3 minutes…all the while complimenting each other on their positions. It was quite intolerable. Needless to say, when something is intolerable, it must be gotten away from. At that point, I turned off the television.

What I did not hear in the debate was one difficult question for any of the candidates. There was the occasional “gotcha” question, like one for Sen. Obama about if he thinks Presient Bill Clinton was the first black president, as someone once said. There was the more occasional pop-off statement that gave me the stick eye; for instance, Senator Clinton said that the criminal justice system is broken because there are proportionally more black men in prison than white men – or something to that effect. (This doesn’t mean that the criminal justice system is broken…)

But no hard questions on family, no questions about “what’s next” in foreign policy after withdrawing from Iraq, and no mention at any time of terrorism, terrorists or Islamofascism.

I guess race and gender issues are really so important, their resolution so critical to the continuation of our nation that silly things like winning a war against fanatical pseudo-religious foes can wait.

No comments: