Four Bush Doctrines
Charles Krauthammer, who coined the phrase “Bush Doctrine” in July 2001, argues that the condescension of Charlie Gibson and others over Sarah Palin’s not knowing what “Bush Doctrine” meant is misplaced.
He notes that there have been four distinct meanings of the term, with Gibson’s being the third and thus obviated. The first, from Krauthammer’s coinage, was a willingness to unlaterally abrograte treaties judged no longer to be in our national interest. The second, immediately after 9/11, was the “with us or against us” idea. The third, spawned by the Iraq War debate, was the right to strike preemptively. The fourth, set forth in the second inaugural address, is a commitment to use American resources to spread democracy throughout the world.
Was Palin’s confusion as to which of these four formulations Gibson was referencing the problem? My guess: No. But Krauthammer’s right that the sense of superiority this interview has brought out in so many is unjustified.
Michael Seitzman, a screenwriter of some note who blogs at HuffPo, perhaps takes the cake on that score. Writing under perhaps the best Google-bait headline ever, Sarah Palin Naked, he begins:
She said “nucular.” Twice.
I realized three things tonight. For one, if you are a McCain/Palin/Bush voter, you and I do not have a difference of opinion. We have a difference in brain power. Two, she really is as ignorant as I feared. And, three, she really is kinda hot. Basically, I want to have sex with her on my Barack Obama sheets while my wife reads aloud from the Constitution. (My wife is cool with this if I promise to “first wipe off Palin’s tranny makeup.” I married well.)
Now, I want to be clear and speak directly to those of you who LOVED that Palin interview. You’re an idiot. I mean that. This is not one of those cases where we’re going to agree to disagree. This isn’t one of those situations where we debate it passionately and then walk away thinking that the other guy is wrong but argued well. I’m not going to think of you as a thoughtful but misguided person with different ideas who still really cares about the country and the world. No, sorry, not this time. This time, if you watched those interview excerpts and weren’t scared out of your freakin’ mind, then you’re mentally ill, mentally disabled, or mentally disturbed. What you are NOT is responsible, informed, curious, thoughtful, mature, educated, empathetic, or remotely serious. I mean it.
While I think it’s a happy accident, it almost seems as if Team McCain picked Palin precisely in hopes of eliciting this kind of reaction from Obama and his supporters.