[Marxism] Nation Magazine dress rehearsal for 2008

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Fri May 20 10:09:34 MDT 2005


What about Clinton's biggest lapse--her Iraq vote? For some antiwar 
progressives, no doubt, it will be a deal-breaker. And, of course, they are 
unlikely to be comforted by the fact that she really thought she was doing 
the right thing, as people who are close to her insist she did. Yet to 
focus on that one vote, again, misses the larger goal of Clinton's 
politics. As she recognizes, the Democratic Party's problem on national 
security far transcends the Iraq vote. Decades of assaults on Dems from the 
right (helped along by international fiascoes presided over by Lyndon 
Johnson and Jimmy Carter) have succeeded in persuading Americans that Dems 
are fundamentally uncomfortable with the application of American "hard" 
power abroad. As Clinton well knows, this is not something that can be 
corrected by merely donning a pair of plastic hawk's wings. It's a 
perception problem that will take a long time--and a lot of hard work--to 
reverse. So she's methodically built up a comfort level--and comfort is the 
key--with national security issues, joining the Armed Services Committee 
and spending countless hours mastering military arcana. This approach is 
far more involved and politically shrewd than just talking tough on the 
Sunday chat shows. It's not off-putting to the Democratic base, which 
loathes Joe Lieberman-style militaristic posturing. And it comes across as 
genuine, because it's rooted in Clinton's strategy of emphasizing smart, 
pragmatic government over ideology.

full: http://www.thenation.com/doc.mhtml?i=20050606&c=5&s=sargent





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