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View Diary: The Good Fight: Peter Beinart Responds (221 comments)

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  •  Weird (19+ / 0-)

    It says it is precisely because we recognize that America is fallible, because we recognize our capacity for injustice and struggle to overcome it, that we defeat our enemies. Because we know greatness must be earned, not just asserted, we avoid moral complacency. We don't build prison camps like Guantanamo Bay.

    How is this substantively different than 99% of the national security posts on Daily Kos?

    It's odd to hear Beinart talking about needing to find First Principles and to construct the political strategy from there.  TNR has long been against this sort of soul-searching, and has indeed dismissed it as naive.  So I'm glad he's with us latte-sipping elitists who think the party needs a soul more than it needs a perfect triangle.  

    That said, I don't find this particularly genuine because, as Armando points out, we have been having this debate.  The bloggers, the war protesters, the whole "wacky anti-war left" -- we have been struggling with this tension between war and jihadism for years.  It is only recently that the declining popularity of the war has made it safe for moderates to even engage the issue.  This debate rages on, and I'd invite anyone to look up the excellent recent diary about "just wars", but there's no arguing that the liberal web pays a LOT of attention to foreign policy and national security.  And, ironically, I think the position we've evolved is nearly identical to the one Beinart pedantically lectures we should take: America is strongest when it lives up to its ideals.

    Read James Loewen's "Sundown Towns"!

    by ChicagoDem on Fri Jun 02, 2006 at 07:55:22 AM PDT

    •  What is Beinart talking about? (14+ / 0-)

      I truly don't understand where Beinart is coming from. It's like he's groping toward a set of first principles that most of the real members of the party already agree on. Maybe because he was so far out of touch with the people of the party, he doesn't know what we've been talking about for years. It's like someone going to a meeting of environmentalists and saying, "You know what you people should be worried about is fossil fuel use! The fact that you aren't is very detrimental to your cause."

      It's a very weird perspective he has. He says we shouldn't worry about the politics but instead formulate the first principles, but then he says that we haven't formulated those principles because the politicians haven't been able to articulate them. He's using the lack of progress on the thing he says to ignore to bolster his argument that we need work on the aspect he wants to talk about.

      There's a fairly broad consensus in the Democratic Party on the issues Beinart raises, but his rhetoric about the Democratic Party needing to get serious on foreign policy is exactly counter to any sort of realization of that fact. He's working against the very thing he claims to want.

      Here's a suggestion to Beinart: shut up about the "divisions" in the Democratic Party and start talking up the consensus that really exists.

      Personally, I think it's vanity that drives him. He's so used to thinking of himself as separate and more serious than the rest of the "liberals" that he can't bring himself to realize that he's just moved to where we were all along.

      PubliusTV: A Collaborative Media Network

      by BriVT on Fri Jun 02, 2006 at 08:16:13 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  somebody print this and fax it to Beinart (0+ / 0-)

        ...about 1000 times.

        Everything I was thinking as I read it, said better than I could. Thanks BriVT!

        Francine Busby for Congress in CA-50!

        by reid fan on Fri Jun 02, 2006 at 09:02:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Yup, it's the vanity (0+ / 0-)

        Personally, I think it's vanity that drives him. He's so used to thinking of himself as separate and more serious than the rest of the "liberals" that he can't bring himself to realize that he's just moved to where we were all along

        Very well put.  I think his audience consists of the booking agents and producers at CNN etc, who will be quick to give Beinart undue credit for his "new" ideas.

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