Sunday, October 21, 2007


First, let's have some fun with the historical parallel:

Such is why President Bush has recently had some nice things to say about Hillary Clinton, leading some to speculate that Bush sees her as the Eisenhower to his Truman—a candidate from the opposing party who criticizes his foreign policy during the campaign, but will likely pursue a very similar policy should she be elected.

So, that mean she'll act stupid, play a lot of golf, and let the CIA overthrow the government of Iran, right?

OK, get it out of your system, then tell me; is this realistic? I know the netroots fear Hillary for just this reason, but I don't trust their eyesight. I know it's a neo-con's dream that she'll turn out to be the white knight who does it all right, but I think they're too punch-drunk to be trustworthy at this point. [What's the old Chinese proverb? Damsel in distress mistakes the pounding of her own heart for the hoofbeats of her rescuer.]

One reason I don't think it will be so is that the mechanism of government is different since Ike's day. The Republicans had been out of office forever by the time he took over. They literally had no one in the ideological core of the party in any real leadership positions. The Democratic administration, however, based on the wartime spirit, had taken in a few good Republicans and given them some positions of middling importance. Foster Dulles in State is a key example. He served under Acheson and was conversant in all the important policies until the summer of the election, when he hit the campaign trail as a critic of the very administration he had helped shape. Naturally, when he became Sec. of State himself, there was no radical shift in policies.