Of the dilettantes and doubters currently residing in the chambers of "The World’s Greatest Deliberative Body", Daniel Henninger writes in today’s Wall Street Journal (available on-line):
As a political strategy, unremitting opposition has worked. Approval
for the president and the war is low. The GOP lost sight of its
ideological lodestars and so control of Congress. But the U.S. still
occupies a unique position of power in the world, and we are putting
that status at risk by playing politics without a net.
On the "Charlie Rose Show" this month, former Army vice chief of
staff Gen. Jack Keane, who supports the counterinsurgency plan being
undertaken by Gen. David Petraeus, said in exasperation: "My God, this
is the United States. We are the world’s No. 1 superpower. This isn’t
about arrogance. This is about capability and applying ourselves to a
problem that is at its essence a human problem."
At our current juncture, Gen. Keane’s words probably rub many the
wrong way. But there’s a Cassandra-like warning implicit in them. The
mood of mass resignation spreading through the body politic is toxic.
It is uncharacteristic of Americans under stress. Some might call it
realism, but it looks closer to the fatalism of elderly Europe,
overwhelmed and exhausted by its burdens, than to the American
The great American traits of optimism, determination, and a can-do approach to any task are falling to the wayside, battered by an apparently endless succession of politicians, intellectuals, policy experts, media stars, and their devotees. What was, only a few decades ago, the source of inspiration to the rest of the world is now the cause of much that is, in the mind of the opposition, evil. We are destroying ourselves from within. It might be an acceptable fate if the intention was the improvement of our condition rather than the achievement of political goals. In its mean spirit which suggests that the defeat of national goals is a victory worth more than the loss of world opinion, the opposition to President Bush serves only to diminish all of us.