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July 22, 2004

A Dangerous Game (UPDATED) « Politics As Usual »
Edwards Suggests World Leaders Want Bush To Lose Thu Jul 22 2004 10:51:24 ET

Sen. John Edwards said on CNN's LARRY KING LIVE last night:

"Just a few weeks ago...I was in Brussels at NATO meeting with a whole group of NATO ambassadors and hearing their perspective on this. I just believe that these countries around the world, whose cooperation and alliances we need, believe that in order for them to have a fresh start with America, we're going to need a new president to do that. Now, they're not going to want to say this very vocally, of course, but the reality is that in order for us to reestablish old relations and to establish new relationships, I believe we need a new president. ...
"They didn't say that directly. What they said was they're very frustrated with the way this administration has dealt with them. They believe that in this case our trans-Atlantic relationships are important, should be important to America, are important to them. They want to be treated with some level of respect.

"They understand, because I made it very clear, at the end of the day, the president of the United States is going to do what's in the best interest of the American people. But the vast majority of the time, our interests are aligned with the interests of our allies around the world."

This is dangerous on many different levels.
First, it leaves Kerry-Edwards wide open to the snarky point that the "foreign leaders" are Osama bin Laden, Saddam Hussein, Kim Jong-il...
Second, because by law, foreign influence on American elections is illegal.
Third, because it assumes that large numbers of people even care what foreign leaders think. This is the most interesting aspect, to me. Most Americans have a great deal of pride in the United States, in what the United States stands for, in the ways that the United States is different than Europe. I think the reasons Democrats are losing traction with Americans as a whole is because we don't want to be just like Europe. This is, in part, why it is often so easy to sting Democrats with charges of lack of patriotism: if they really love France or Germany or Belgium or Switzerland so much that they want to alter the United States to match, well, then do they really love America? Maybe, but it's much harder to prove. Some people have compared "patriotism" to "loving your spouse". If you spend all your time talking about how much better looking, smarter, more funny, richer another person is, your spouse isn't really going to be easily convinced that you really place much value on your marriage or continued relationship.

Any one of these aspects could end up blowing up in Kerry-Edwards faces.

Another thought struck me over lunch. Most nations tend to look out for their own self-interests first. To that extent, sometimes you can tell you are doing the right thing by the number of other nations' leaders you piss off. It is quite possible highly possible that a number of foreign leaders want Kerry elected President of the United States because they know they will have a better chance of getting the United States to weaken itself or otherwise stay out of the way while they enrich their own country at the expense of the citizens of others.
Think about it.

Posted by Nathan at 09:47 AM | Comments (2)

That is right on the mark.

It is one thing to work toward one economic *global* market. We do it as do most of the other major economic powers. But to willingly give up part or all of ones national soulvernty I honestly think we are ignoring some part of human nature in doing so.
Not that we shouldn't work at getting along better with the other kids on the block. But we shouldn't have to allow them to have a say in our family matters in order to do so.

Posted by: Guy S. at July 22, 2004 01:23 PM

Thank you.

Posted by: Nathan at July 23, 2004 05:24 PM
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