Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Sometimes you should skip the blog and read the comments

"lone wolf," whoever he or she is, lists a number of qualities that should disqualify anyone from being taken seriously in discussions about foreign policy -- this in a comment at ex-Chicagoan Daniel Drezner's blog:

Cheerleading, uni-dimensional advice (pacifistic or militaristic), blaming others (individuals, institutions, countries) for poor execution, and the continuous disregard/simplification of the seminal self-interests of other countries and peoples (whether they coincide or conflict with ours) are automatic disqualifiers for consideration.

Anyone who has ever used the term 'domino' to refer to anything other than their personal gaming experiences in their family room is disqualified.

Anyone who refers to the voting percentage in an occupied country as a barometer of democratic health is disqualified.

Anyone who combines the terminology of 'escalation' and 'democracy' in the same sentence is disqualified.

Anyone who does not know that threats not acted upon are simply bluffs waiting to be called is disqualified.

Lastly, anyone who thinks that the short or intermediate term application of military force will be 'transformative' in any other way than destructive (which can be desirable in some circumstances, like Hiroshima) needs to be permanently barred from any serious foreign policy discussion.

5 comments:

So-Called Austin Mayor said...

"Sometimes you should skip the blog and read the comments"

That makes this comment a bit of a let-down, doesn't it?

-- SCAM

JB Powers said...

This may be the most tortured sentence in the English language:

"Anyone who does not know that threats not acted upon are simply bluffs waiting to be called is disqualified"

JBP

Paul Botts said...

All that post does is replace one set of sweeping blanket statements (that of the neocons) with a different set. Equally childish in either case, and hardly seems to advance a sensible discussion of the U.S.'s role in the world.

Put another way: I'd be just as happy to play poker for money against that poster as against Dubya.

Harold said...

Sorry, Paul, my rule is never to play poker for money against anyone who want to play poker for money against me. Besides, I don't agree with everything s/he said, but I do have a fondness for how it was said.

Paul Botts said...

Ah I see. Well for me I guess it's the content that matters much more than the rhetorical skill. Ayn Rand wrote quite well but that fact didn't make her ideas any less childish; Reagan's great communications skills didn't make his understandings of some subjects any less idiotic. My point is that regardless of how well those points above were said, they are quite brainless in content.