Thursday, August 28, 2008

McIlheran Is Painfully MisInformed

Patrick McIlheran decides to take a partisan swipe at Barack Obama, suggesting he has a "McGovernite view of America's relationship with the world."

What exactly might that be?

* George McGovern's service during World War II as a B-24 bomber pilot, smashing the Nazi war machine during 35 missions and winning the Distinguished Flying Cross for safely landing a crippled bomber and saving the crew?

* Serving as the first director of the Food for Peace Program, which has sent US grain to hungry people, in poor countries, for nearly 50 years?

* Serving two terms in the House of Representatives and three in the US Senate?

* Being nominated by the Democratic Party for President, serving as a member of two US delegations to the United Nations under Presidents Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter?

* Co-founding the world food lunch program with former Republican US Senator Bob Dole that was funded by both President Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, and serving under President Clinton, and briefly under President Bush, as US Ambassador to the UN Food and Agricultural Program?

* Winning the US Presidential Medal of Freedom?

George McGovern has been a soldier in war, a peace-maker, and a leader in the effort to end world hunger.

He has also opposed the unnecessary wars in Vietnam and Iraq - - which I suspect is at the core of McIlheran's thinking, should there actually be some beyond figuring out how to mess with a proper noun.

There are many observers who say that reducing hunger and poverty is in our national security interest.

As is the judicious use of military force, something with which George McGovern has been personally acquainted.

If Obama works towards those goals, I hope he is a McGovernite.

(Disclosure: George McGovern is my father-in-law and I am happy to invite McIlheran to better understand how foolish it is to undermine a genuine American patroit with short-sighted, partisan shorthand.)


Other Side said...

Here, here.

McGovern has been one of my heroes.

Anonymous said...

All PMac is saying is that Obama has a view of the US's relationship with the world that is like McGovern's. Since he doesn't elaborate, I'm guessing he means Obama and McGovern are naive weenies with a Wilsonian view that the US should aim to be loved, not feared, by fighting only in morally correct wars against truly evil forces...which is partly how Bush sold the Dems on Iraq. I think it's likely that the "candidate with the proper view" is irrelevant. What good is the "proper view" when the Russians decide to reassert local hegemony because they can? Stalin's question about how many divisions the pope has is applicable to western "moral outrage" over countries that assert power by direct force rather than financial manipulation and the "big stick" of the US military.

What is the correct view of the US's relationship with the world acording to PMac? Biggest government/military player in the global oligarchy that we vote for every day at the pump, as long as there's no draft? I'm sure Obama, McCain and all their peers agree on this and only pretend not to. They themselves are the lower gentry and clerks of the oligarchs. Obama can score the ethanol pork for IL and tell aging rustbelt whiners that he'll bring not only the troops home but their old factory jobs too. No wonder his is mistaken for Jesus.

Don't blame the liars/politicians, blame the populace that wants to be lied to. If they elect Obama, they'll elect him as the lie they want because its better packaged than the Bush brand and makes you feel good. Whatever party flavor we select, we get an errand boy for "American interests," the creation and control of taps and faucets known as the free market.

That is probably the main difference between the present presidential race and McGovern's. There is no anti-war movement, the people are not tired of being lied to--quite the opposite. They just want assurances that the faucets and funnels will continue working and throw a little more cash their way.

The most relevant and common comparisons of Obama to McGovern describe them as ideological fringe candidates who are so far to the left on "social issues" they can't win over the "heartland" types. (E.g., the "Real People" whining about job loss last night on the O-Show.) The Clinton campaign banked on this strategy too, and it may be Obama's main weakness with the voters. At least it is a rhetorically manageable problem, suitably subjective and safely disconnected from the facts and realities that show Obama is just another politician, sometimes a shakedown artist, sometimes a puppet for powerful moneyed interests, but always ready to share his heart, family and great HUMANITY with us all.

James Rowen said...

So McIlheran needs this much interpretation?

Newspaper writing is supposed to answere more questions than it raises.