Sunday, September 13, 2009

The September 12th Failure of Cognition

By Claudia Rosett (article link)

We have a president who imagines he can keep this country safe by reaching out to Syria, haggling with North Korea and Iran, winking at Libya’s Muammar Qaddafi and smiling at Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez. Washington is rife with politicians and pundits willing to entertain the idea that if America withdraws in defeat from Afghanistan, there will be no hell to pay.

Imagination now tells us that with the help of the United Nations, the politicians of the world can fine-tune the climate and the tides. Imagination says there can be state-planned healthcare for all, but rationing and deficits for none. Imagination says America can be centrally planned, but free; nanny-state, but strong; apologetically appeasement-driven, but secure. Imagination has reduced “war” to “overseas contingency operations,” and imagination posits that – Afghanistan apart — what remains of those overseas contingency operations can mostly be fought and won through the U.S. courts.

Meanwhile, the alarms are clanging. Signs are that Iran will soon be rolling out nuclear bombs. North Korea has already run its second nuclear test. New York County District Attorney Robert Morgenthau goes to Washington to warn an unheeding administration that a fast-rising “axis of unity” between Venezuela and Iran is on a path leading toward nuclear-tipped missiles in America’s “backyard.” Pirates, and freighters stuffed with North Korean weapons, ply the seas. Al Qaeda digs into Africa. Russia and China blaze the way toward a world order in which ruthless autocracy outranks democracy, and New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman sees a certain charm in the idea.

Comment: I will not bet a nickel that New York will survive past the next several years.


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