Monday, November 06, 2006

A few final thoughts from Mark Steyn

One of the more annoying pretensions of "progressives," or left-leaning liberals these days, involves looking you right in the eye and telling you that they support our troops, but not their mission.

I have always found it particularly calculating that someone could sincerely make that claim, while simultaneously and vehemently opposing the soldiers' successes in a mission they have chosen to undertake.

Remember. These soldiers are volunteers!

And even though there are now some who may be dissolutioned with what were high initial ideals and goals, and maybe even some who have changed their minds about the mission itself, anyone thoughtfully analyzing the situation must recognize that cutting and running (e.g., redeployment in Okinawa) is just not a reasonable strategy, either in the short term, or long term. It locks in defeat. And it can not thereafter be mistaken by anyone, here or abroad, as proof of the United States choosing to operate from a position of strength.

On an personal level, telling someone that you are for them but against what they are willing to risk their lives to accomplish for the common good, to me is just downright insulting.

Consider, for example, the thoughts expressed in this interesting online interview of writer, columnist, critic, and "one-man global content provider," Mark Steyn, by interviewer Hugh Hewitt. If you are not familiar with either one or both of them, please take a minute to read the entire exchange. Hugh Hewitt is "the Commissioner" to the conservative blogging community, whose discerning interviews have become legend.

And Mark Steyn is, in the opinion of many (e.g., me), the best columnist in America today. If you have an appreciation for the extraordinary historical contributions of certain foreign born commentators to American social and political thought, you'll be intrigued by what Mark has to say.

Beginning, of course, with Alexis de Tocqueville's Democracy in America, which celebrated, in antebellum America, the success of the American republican form of representative democracy, over the notable failures of the French and other models of democratic government, such insightful commentators lead in an unbroken chain to Mark Steyn. As you will recall, Touqueville first came here in 1831, and his book was first published in 1835.

Mark Steyn, who has also recently published a provocative book, entitled "America Alone: The End of the World as We Know It," is a writer who will truly make you think. All of his work can be located on the web can be found here at SteynOnline.

His columns for the Chicago sun Times are also published on-line and the
latest one analyzes Senator John Kerry's recent outrageous remarks about American troops. In the midst of skewering the supercilious Mr. Kerry, Steyn responds to that bromide of the left about supporting the troops, but not the mission. He noted that with regard to Kerry,

what he said fits what too many upscale Dems believe: that America's soldiers are only there because they're too poor and too ill-educated to know any better. That's what they mean when they say "we support our troops." They support them as victims, as children, as potential welfare recipients,but they don't support them as warriors and they don't support the mission.

So their "support" is objectively worthless. The indignant protest that "of course" "we support our troops" isn't support, it's a straddle, and one that emphasizes the Democrats' frivolousness in the post-9/11 world. A serious party would have seen the jihad as a profound foreign-policy challenge they needed to address credibly.


In the interview with Hugh Hewitt, Mark also replied to an invitation to express his opinion on the importance of 2006 elections, to be held tomorrow:

Well, I think they’re critical, because I think to effectively repudiate the Bush administration, which is how it would be seen domestically, would be seen around the world as in fact a repudiation of the broader American will, and broader American determination. So I think that would be serious, not because there aren’t legitimate differences about the war, and about fighting this enemy, and long term strategy, but because you’d be electing a party that simply has no useful contribution to this. I don’t think it’s possible to take Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, the Democratic Party of these two people, and Howard Dean seriously on this issue. They have not engaged seriously with it.

And as I said on the domestic front, they’re wedded to the solutions that have in fact turned Europeans into a weak continent that’s sort of mortgaging its future to deeply hostile forces every passing month.


Well said. He has also treated us today with his prognostication for tomorrow, Election Day.

Everyone loves an optimist. Please enjoy, and above all, do not forget to vote!

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