Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Colin Powell’s resignation as the end of civilization as we know it

It’s been amusing to watch the CNN types reflect (I use the word loosely) on Colin Powell and his most likely replacement, Condi Rice. Here is the gist: Powell is a statesman, a man full of all the virtues, magnanimity not excluded. He is a man of sovereign parts, in whose face you see the map of honor and truth. He has standing and stature and wit and intellect and most important, he stood tall in opposition the the President’s hard-ass policies, and to all his other mean-spirited and hard-hearted advisors. He was the last sober voice in the cabinet. He never--this soldier with an unspotted heart--did any ill or have any other thoughts than natural princes ought to have. This reign of the good is now over and we are forced to consider something wicked coming our way. Oh, this change cannot be good. Now there will be no one to oppose the neanderthals. Rice will not only be in agreement with the President, but will likely get the Department of State on board the administration’s line, and before we know it the CIA will be next! Oh my, what will become of us?

Every president must have such an opposing voice in his cabinet, else the
cherry trees on the Mall will begin walking and
all sorts of unnatural troubles and deeds will follow. Remarkably foolish stuff, all this. This is a prosaic example from the

Washington Post. More to follow, count on it.

Discussions - 7 Comments

Funny that I don’t remember them appreciating Powell this much when he was around, except for when they wanted to compare him to the ominous "neocons."

When M. Albright was chosen by Clinton, I seem to remember that it was a(n) "historic" and "courageous" and "briliant" move of Clinton. Now, Doctor Rice, public servant for many years, first black woman in history to hold this position, is a threat? Is it because she’s black, a woman, or a consernative that makes her a threat?

Peter, I think you nailed the media’s view on the resignations and replacements. NPR made much the same lamentations for Powell and fear-mongering of Rice. A few thoughts:

1. If this were a Democratic president, high marks would be given for appointing an African-American woman.

2. What did Powell do that really earned him the adulation that the media wants to bestow on him? The Post article notes that he was more or less a failure with "few lasting achievements."

3. The Post, and others, argued that sanctions, rather than mere diplomatic talking, might actually be imposed on nuclear, authoritarian nations like N. Korea and Iran. Perish the thought. Maybe they should be given $20 billion like Iraq received as a reward for their nuclear program. If Condi Rice gets tough with the PLO and nations like Iran, there might just be a few less terrorists in the world and freedom might just advance.

4. They make it sound as if the president should choose people for his Cabinet who are totally opposed to his policies. Would a Democratic Kerry as president put several neocons in his Cabinet? I don’t think so. This is grown-up politics boys and girls.

I welcome others’ insights, particularly on what Powell has achieved on foreign policy.

Actually I think Bush is a racist woman-hater. Why else would he demote this poor woman to that of a Secretary?! I mean, is that ALL he thinks women are good for...taking notes and getting coffee? The thing is, which state will she be the secretary of? They NEVER mention that.

Tony, I think Powell’s handling of China (negotiating the return of our P-3 Orion crew safely) was some fairly fancy work for the Secretary in a new position. After 9/11 I think it was good work to bring Pakistan on board, although I bet that was not so much negotiating as it was a simple threat (if you don’t want to be vapoized 30 minutes after I leave this meeting, let us work together, Mr. Musharif) and it seems India became quiet in it’s demands with Pakistan. Those are pretty big ones.

If I hear on the news that Powell was a "good soldier" another time, I think I am going to turn into swamp gas.

They should make Robert Alt the new Secretary of State. At least he has been to Iraq, unlike these media elites who opine on the war and on Rice’s qualifications from the safety of their luxury condos.

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