Thursday, May 27, 2010

Beware a Cornered Obama

This hits on something Yasha and I discuss from time to time, namely, that even though Republicans are thought to be the hardliner hawks, we are far more cautious than a threatened Democrat.  Republicans do think about using military power more often because they are often thinking in the national interest, preventing and defending US interests.  Democrats, on the other hand, don't like to think about such things.  They will avoid, excuse, and delay until they can't anymore.  And then they blow, some with better results than others.  


The link covers Wilson.  But we have other, similar stories.  FDR took us to WWII after delay.   JFK, we remember him as strong on national defense, but his early days were full of hope and peace rhetoric.   Then came the disastrous meeting with Khrushchev, followed by the Berlin Wall--they build a wall and JFK gives a speech--and the Bay of Pigs betrayal.  JFK went into Vietnam because he needed to "draw a line in the sand" to prove that he could.    (By the way, compare the Vietnam section in JFK's entry to the JKF section in the Vietnam War entry.)  Johnson escalated Vietnam when he got into political trouble.  Carter did the failed hostage rescue.  Clinton went into Bosnia without UN approval or any US interest, allegedly to divert attention from his domestic problems.   


For all the talk about Bush being a warmonger, by comparison he was restrained.  He prepped for weeks before invading Afghanistan.  He went along with Blair tried for an eighteenth UN resolution against Iraq.  Part of the difficulty in securing Iraq after taking Baghdad resulted from the restrained and precision bombing employed to reduce civilian casualties.   


Beware a cornered Obama.  We have a lot of firepower.  He might feel the need to draw a line in the sand.      

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

About the term "cheeky"

We've been in London for 4 years, and, while my husband and I have no British accents, British vocabulary is infectious.  I use lots of British terms, though not always correctly.  Some are very nuanced and require more experience than I have to use properly.  The children are another story. My sister-in-law calls my 6 year old son Christopher Freakin' Robin.  Imagine a Texas boy telling his aunt, "Quick.  We have to ring up the fire brigade straightaway!"

About the term "housewife"

A few years ago I was reading Caitlin Flanagan and decided to embrace the term.  It suited me perfectly.  I am not a stay-at-home mom, someone who, by title, is centered on her children.  I adore my children, but I am not at home so that they can be the center of my attention. I am an old-fashioned housewife.  I run all the "life administration," the house and finances, and generally put more effort into my marriage than into being the perfect modern mom.  I'd love to see "housewife" return to common usage without being some slander for some sort of put upon woman--or a reality show throw off for that matter.  Slacker Mom, Three Martini Mom, Free Range Mom, they all have the same idea, but, for those of us who don't work at least, the term "housewife" is better for common usage--less cheeky.