Tuesday, November 08, 2011


Jeff Zeleny in The New York Times, June 14, 2011:

The hawkish consensus on national security that has dominated Republican foreign policy for the last decade is giving way to a more nuanced view....

The evolution ... highlights a renewed streak of isolationism among Republicans, which has been influenced by the rise of the Tea Party movement and a growing sense that the United States can no longer afford to intervene in clashes everywhere....

Richard A. Oppel Jr. in The New York Times today:

As United Nations inspectors prepare to unveil a new report on Iran's nuclear capabilities, some Republican presidential candidates have taken increasingly forceful tones on the issue, saying they would sanction or consider supporting an attack on Iran’s nuclear program by either Israel or the United States.

The party's hawkishness was evident last week as five major Republican rivals campaigned in Iowa....

Remember clueless reporters telling us a few months ago that Republicans were going all Taftian on us, and rejecting bellicosity? With the tea party getting the credit?

Never mind that a big chunk of the evidence was Huntsman (as usual) being contrarian, Romney (as usual) trying to talk about of both sides of his mouth, and Paul (as usual) being nothing at all like the rest of the GOP on foreign policy.

And, oh, yeah, there was then-A-lister Michele Bachmann expressing skepticism about America's involvement in Libya. Well, guess how mellow she is on the subject of Iran:

...after a campaign appearance at Iowa State University on Thursday, Mrs. Bachmann warned, "Iran has stated once they gain a nuclear weapon they will use it to wipe Israel off the face of the earth."

Herman Cain says he'd consider an attack on Israel to be equivalent to an attack on the U.S. Huntsman and Romney would consider military force against Iran. Perry and Santorum are rattling sabers. Omigosh -- where's the isolationism? The tea-party-inspired isolationism?

The answer has always been glaringly obvious: Whatever President Obama does, Republicans are against it. He got us involved in Libya, so Libyan involvement was bad. He hasn't overtly gotten us involved in the planning of a military attack on Iran, so Republicans are back on message, calling him an anti-Semite and terrorist sympathizer and sandal-wearing hippie. Ron Paul notwithstanding, that's all there ever was to this, and that should have been obvious from the start. Reporters need to get the Poli Sci 101 categories out of their heads and realize that everything the modern GOP does is just an exercise in raw partisanship. There's not much more to it.


BH said...

We're again reminded that these ponderous NYT finders-of-meaning know no more, and in many cases less, than the average rational political observer. Silver at 538 (one of the few worthwhile users of NYT space) recently wrote a couple of pieces demonstrating the huge degree of inaccuracy in the predictions of "political experts", for example. They all sure manage to make good livings, though.

c u n d gulag said...

I've said it before, and I'll say it again:
If Obama walked on water, the Republicans would say, "Typical Liberal N*gger, too lazy and stupid to learn to learn how to swim!"

I don't think that Groucho ever thought his song, "Whatever It Is, I'm Against It!" would become a political parties position on any and every policy question.