GN writes: Vox, your options, unfortunately, aren’t serious ones. This is a case of applying too much cold logic. But you ought to know that that has nothing to do with politics. There is NOTHING in the makeup of Congress, the media, or the American zeitgeist that will permit the Fortress America option. It’s been dismissed as the option of racist kooks, about one step up from secession. Option two is almost as implausible, for much the same reason. Remember, Bush needed a macguffin even to invade Iraq, all that WMD bs. This is not a man who’s been able to pick his targets. He’s taking what he can get. Politics is about choosing between the options that can be realistically executed.
Remember, as Sowell said, politics is the art of the plausible.
This may well be the case. Unfortunately, those are the only two options that I see as being viable. This wouldn’t be the first time that politics got in the way of rational decision-making. This tends to highlight why I am profoundly skeptical of success in Iraq. To paraphrase Eisenhower, doing nothing works better than taking what you can get nine times out of ten. This does not feel like one of those one-tenth time successes.