Sunday, December 14, 2003

Better Response, But Not Perfect

Dean's response to the Hussein news was much wiser than Kerry's or Gephart's. Dean offered congratulations in his statement:

Dec. 14, 2004, WEST PALM BEACH-- Governor Dean issued the following statement this morning:

"This is a great day for the Iraqi people, the US, and the international community.

"Our troops are to be congratulated on carrying out this mission with the skill and dedication we have come to know of them."

Of course, he failed to congratulate the President. No surprise there. Then, I guess because none of the Dems can resist doing so, Dean went to a line that will not play- bring in the UN:

"This development provides an enormous opportunity to set a new course and take the American label off the war. We must do everything possible to bring the UN, NATO, and other members of the international community back into this effort."

The UN wasn't needed, as was shown by the capture. That is as plain as day.

Presidency Secured

I had previously figured that, with Bush's signing of the legislation authorizing the prescription drug giveaway to senior citizens, he had secured his re-election. Then, Howard Dean was annointed by Al Gore the Pious, which in my mind sealed the deal.

Now, Saddam Hussein has been captured. Can there be any doubt that Bush's approval ratings will soar?

It has been amusing to watch Democratic presidential hopefuls respond. John Kerry was quick to point out that Osama bin Laden is still out there. He's right, but that won't play. Dick Gephart was quick to point out that the US hasn't been including the rest of the world. It was just shown that the rest of the world wasn't needed, so that won't play, either.

It will be interesting to see who will be the first, if anyone does, to point to something that will play. Congratulating the president and the military might be wise.
Issue Number One

For most Americans, terrorism has been Job One, hence President Bush's relatively high approval ratings. Yes, I know, the ratings have been slipping, but they are going to go through the roof if the news of the capture of Saddam Hussein is true. Story.

I have held my nose on the war effort for some time. I thought it quite appropriate to go after Osama bin Laden after the attacks on September 11, but did believe it to be appropriate to go after Iraq. Was Iraq developing weapons of mass destruction? Undoubtedly, just as the Clinton Administration informed the nation. Has China? Did the USSR? Is there any doubt that those nations developed the weapons with us in mind? Should we have gone after them? Would I be here to write this if we had?

My greatest fear is that the US will perpetually be a nation at war. We can endlessly accuse nations of potentially having the United States as a target, and endlessly be issuing pre-emptive strikes. I don't trust governments that act pre-emptively based on what they think someone will do. One that does it abroad may just as easily do it at home.

Gun owners, I'm talking to you. If you have guns, you have the ability to kill. If you are a politically vocal gun owner, might a government official conclude that you are a threat, and should be locked up or taken out, just to be safe?

I know that the Hussein regime was as evil as they come, and I am glad for the Iraqi people that Hussein is out of power. I lament that we have not captured bin Laden, which IS Job Number One.

Question: Is it the job of the United States to overthrow evil empires? If so, who qualifies? The President has identified North Korea and the axis of evil. Iran is probably on the list. Where do we stop? China? Russia? Cuba? France? If this is our job, we're going to be busy for the rest of our lifetimes.

Now that Hussein is in our hands, let's end this thing. Turn the reins over the the Iraqi people and let their experiment in self-government begin.