August 07, 2007

The Progressive Values of "Responsible" Democrats

If you believe the United States has the "right" to take "offensive military action against Iran" -- that is, against a nation that does not threaten us now and will not threaten us for years to come, if ever -- and if you believe, in the event we do launch an unprovoked, non-defensive attack on Iran, which is to say, if we commit another monstrous war crime, that it would be nice, but hardly necessary, "if the rest of the world saw it as a position of last resort"; and

If you think the United States should still have troops in Iraq at the end of your second term as president, which is to say, at least through the end of 2016 -- which is, of course, the view of the entrenched foreign policy establishment that believes in a foreign policy of aggressive, neverending global interventionism maintained by an empire of military bases around the world, all to guarantee American hegemony; and

If you believe that the president should have "some lawful authority" to use torture or other "severe" interrogation methods in a so-called "ticking-bomb scenario" -- which is to say, in a scenario that does not correspond to real life at any point, but is the fever dream of viciously stupid and imitative hack writers; and

If you do not "believe any president should make blanket statements with regard to use or nonuse" of nuclear weapons, even against nations and peoples that do not threaten us -- because, well, you know, you can never be too safe or too careful, and at some point you might need to murder another million people who were no danger to us whatsoever...

What does that make you?

Why, a "responsible" Democrat who wins the approval of -- drumroll, please -- William Kristol!
William Kristol, editor of the conservative Weekly Standard, sounded more effusive. "Obama," he said, "is becoming the antiwar candidate, and Hillary Clinton is becoming the responsible Democrat who could become commander in chief in a post-9/11 world." -- Washington Post, August 7, 2007
I prefer the word "progressive," which has a real American meaning, going back to the progressive era at the beginning of the 20th century. I consider myself a modern progressive, someone who believes strongly in individual rights and freedoms, who believes that we are better as a society when we're working together and when we find ways to help those who may not have all the advantages in life get the tools they need to lead a more productive life for themselves and their family. So I consider myself a proud modern American progressive, and I think that's the kind of philosophy and practice that we need to bring back to American politics. -- Hillary Clinton, CNN/YouTube Democratic Presidential Candidate Debate
And about that "progressive era at the beginning of the 20th century": Unwelcome History -- Religion, the Progressives, Empire and the Drug War