Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Binders of horses and bayonets

"There were no binders full of women at the final presidential debate on Monday, but there were certainly horses and bayonets." -- Huffington Post
"I love teachers" -- Mitt Romney   "I think we all love teachers" -- Bob Schieffer 
Sharpton spun it best, comparing Romney to a boxer clinching and holding on to his opponent just to keep from getting knocked out. Romney handlers knew that few among his right-wing base gave a crap about his foreign policy positions, their main concern being making the White House white again.

So instead of a badly-needed debate on our  foreign policy, we were treated to an Obama beat-up on the weakest, least-prepared-to-be-president of any Republican candidate I can remember in my time. If the Dems can't defeat this guy, PAC money, voter suppression and all, they should break up their party and start anew.

The take-away for me was that both men (parties) still believe that this is still the American Century, that the world can still be dominated by a single U.S. superpower in political, economic and cultural terms. Romney, posing as a born-again peacenik last night, is really an old-line imperialist who sees every world hot spot or disaster as "an opportunity." Obama and the Dem globalists are more in tune with the new diplomatic and war-making realities (drones and mercs instead of boots on the ground). This was all brought out with Obama's horses and bayonets zinger planted squarely on Romney's slack jaw.

It was also a zinger on the Marines, who still use bayonets and who appear to be on the road to extinction under drones-and-mercs.

Poor ill-informed Romney is still fighting the Cold War while both aim to contain China, not as an ideological enemy, but as economic one, in a battle for markets. Good luck on that one.

Other take-aways:
  • Even though this was supposed to be a foreign policy debate, Romney couldn't resist bashing teacher unions  while claiming to "love teachers.”
  • Even though Romney's main point of attack on Obama re: the 10-year war in Afghanistan (remember Obama called this his "smart war") had to do with setting a date for withdrawal of forces, last night he said, "When I'm president, we'll make sure we bring our troops out by the end of 2014."
  • Both are also apparently willing to continue uncritically backing Israel (Netanyahu's regime) as the main U.S. client state in the Middle East, and making support for Israel the heart of U.S. foreign policy, even if it means billions more in military aid and risking war with Iran and a possible nuclear conflagration. 
And so it went. A tactical win for Obama. A strategic no-knockout event for Romney. A pathetically weak discussion of foreign policy. A likely meaningless debate in terms of influencing the outcome of the election. 

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