Barack Obama is Not a Hippy

Christopher Carr

Christopher Carr does stuff and writes about stuff.

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21 Responses

  1. Nob Akimoto says:

    George Friedman is a fucking loon…. He does make interesting predictions, but he has serious delusions of grandeur and I find his general analysis to be quite suspect.

    As for the rest, I thought of taking on Romney’s absurd foreign policy speech (which really does show the vacuousness of his experience and knowledge in that field) but as usual Larison beat me to the punch.Report

  2. Fnord says:

    It’s certainly true that Obama is no hippy, and it’s reasonable to point out that Obama, too, using “active balancing” techniques in places. But I think that calling it an empirical disagreement about details, a matter of “which countries to bomb”, is also deceptive. It’s not like Romney thinks Iran is a threat so we should be bombing Iran while Obama thinks North Korea is a threat so we should be bombing North Korea. Obama uses force in the world; Romney doesn’t want to use that force differently, he wants to use more.Report

    • Christopher Carr in reply to Fnord says:

      True. I would say Obama uses way way way way way too much force and Romney seems like he will use way way way way way way way way too much force.Report

  3. DRS says:

    Nob’s already linked Larison, so I feel okay doing it again, especially because Larison is firing on all cylinders in this post: Money quote, as Sullivan would say:

    “Mistaking branding for reality is a common error that many Americans make in their assessment of foreign political movements and governments. If a particular leader flatters Americans by praising our country and our values, whether or not he intends to respect those values in governing his own country, many are inclined to take this praise at face value and ignore what that leader does. If American political leaders decide that a given foreign leader is “pro-Western” because he happens to share their antipathy for yet another foreign government, he receives even more slack. At that point, he is no longer just a “pro-Western” leader, but an important “ally.” It doesn’t seem to matter if the “ally” is a security liability for the U.S. so long as he says the right things and has the right enemies. After a while, Americans come to see his domestic enemies as he sees them, and many Americans self-importantly assume that the only people who could possibly oppose their “ally” must also “anti-Western” or, in [Georgia’s] case, “pro-Russian.” To some extent, the foreign leader deserves credit for so effectively misleading Americans into seeing the politics of his country his way, but the Americans that fall for this do so because they want to believe that this is the way the world works.

    This is what I meant in another thread when I said Americans had a tendency to accept the right anti-communist or anti-terrorism or anti-whatever words and ignore local contexts and “facts on the ground”. Americans are so used to the idea of being a superpower (without ever really thinking through what that means) that the idea of simply following national interests seems to be restrictive or even cowardly.Report

  4. Brandon Berg says:

    He seems to be convinced that he’s fighting to protect a a talking, seven-foot-tall, bipedal bird from a cigar-chomping robber baron.

    And you’re telling me he’s not on LSD?Report

  5. BlaiseP says:

    Obama’s foreign policy / lawfare looks an awful lot like Bill Clinton’s. Case in point: the Balkans.Report

  6. damon says:

    “In actuality, President Obama and Mitt Romney are two members of the same school of thought that really disagree on the minor details..”

    100% F-ing true! +10.

    The same can be said and applies to internal policies as well.Report

    • Christopher Carr in reply to damon says:

      “The same can be said and applies to internal policies as well.”

      I think that depends on which Obama you’re comparing with which Romney. Obama-as-President and Romney-as-Governor are remarkably similar. But Obama-as-Senator and Romney-as-Panderer-to-Belligerent-Extremists are quite different.Report

  7. Kim says:

    McCain’s plan to fix our economy was simple: invade Iran. Spend tons of money.
    I can’t for the life of me tell what Romney’s plan is. So I’m defaulting to the same.Report

  8. MFarmer says:

    Hippie, not hippy. Hippy is someone with wide hips. I can’t believe no one corrected you.Report