Thursday, July 17, 2008


Right-wingers, including "respectable" ones, are freaking out about a sentence in a speech Barack Obama gave on July 2. Here's National Review's Jim Geraghty:

...what is Barack Obama talking about when he says we need a "civilian national security force" that is "just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded" as the U.S. military?

Ed Morrissey at Hot Air says it sounds like a reference to "a quasi-military organization operating within the US under the control of the federal government." Wind Rider at Silent Running titles his post about this "So, Does He Mean, Like, Actual Brownshirts?" and invokes not only the Brownshirts but Robert Mugabe's thugs. World Net Daily refers to "Obama's 'Big Brother'" -- and notes, ominously, that the reference to the "civilian national security force" didn't appear in the prepared text of the speech on the sites of The Denver Post and Wall Street Journal. And in a separate commentary, WND's Joseph Farah calls what Obama said "chilling" and speculates that he "is seeking to create some kind of massive but secret national police force that will be even bigger than the Army, Navy, Marines and Air Force put together....Are we talking about creating a police state here?"

ZOMG!! What exactly is the MarxoNazi B. Hussein talking about?

Excuse me, but it's perfectly obvious what he's talking about -- just listen to what he actually says, starting at about 16:32 of this video, which the Obama campaign fiendishly tried to conceal from the public by posting it on YouTube:

And we're going to grow our Foreign Service, open consulates that have been shuttered, and double the size of the Peace Corps by 2011 to renew our diplomacy. We cannot continue to rely only on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives that we've set. We've got to have a civilian national security force that's just as powerful, just as strong, just as well funded.

Any idiot can figure out what "civilian national security force" refers to -- it refers to what he said in the previous sentence.

But, you say (or, rather, Morrissey says), that can't possibly be right -- "the costs associated with reopening consulates and doubling the Peace Corps ... wouldn’t come close to matching what we spend at the Pentagon." Well, duh. But, as any reasonably intelligent person with a command of the English language knows, "just as well funded" doesn't necessarily mean "funded identically." Clearly, it can also mean "having its funding needs met in a similarly satisfactory manner." And "powerful" and "strong" mean -- to a guy like Obama who believes in "soft power" (as do I) -- that a few good diplomats can sometimes accomplish as much as a billion-dollar piece of military equipment.

This has gone viral in Wingnuttia -- check Google, and note, for instance, that it was cited by one of the Freepers who was responding to the Ohio op-ed comparing Obama to Hitler (see my earlier post). So it's probably only a matter of time before this nonsense moves up the news food chain and "liberal media" journalists are asking Obama or his surrogates about it.

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