Monday, June 29, 2009

The Man Who Shot Liberty...

"A stranger came... with a lawbook in his hand."

AWAY. "Now Honduras on the Brink..." "Chavez threatens military action..." "NKorea criticizes US missile defense for Hawaii..." "Israel approves 50 new settler homes in West Bank..." "Russia holds major war games in Caucasus..." One glance at Drudge's headlines this morning is enough to remind me of an entry posted here a few days after Obama's election. It's called The Gathering Storm, and here's an excerpt:

When Bush leaves office, it will be like the marshal turning in his badge and riding out of Dodge City. It's the worldwide fear of how the United States will react that has kept the global pot simmering just below a boil. Even if they suspect that Bush won't call in airstrikes or a battalion of marines in response to a truly provocative act, they don't know it for sure. And so they hesitate, they think and think again, and then they wait. What are they waiting for? For Bush to be gone. As he will be in January 2009.

George W. Bush has been a one-man Cold War, the kind of stabilizing influence created by the perception of a danger that transcends local, personal rivalries and grudges. That's the irony of our current situation. And it's a truly colossal irony. Americans are tired of being not liked around the world. Obama promises to change that. He proclaims his intention to conclude the American Cold War against the world. He will no longer act hastily and unpredictably. He will put away the big stick. He will be reasonable. And we are buoyed and reaffirmed in our support for him by the fact that the world cheers when we elect him to the presidency.

Why are they cheering? Because things will slowly get better in international affairs as the civilized norms of traditional diplomacy are gradually restored to their proper place? Or because there will be a sudden sizeable window of time in which a young, naive, and inexperienced president of the United States will be trying to do too many things at once -- learn the job, staff his administration, resolve an economic crisis, and pursue an extraordinarily ambitious domestic legislative agenda -- leaving the door open for bold moves around the globe he can't possibly respond to effectively?

It makes us think of this guy.

Too bad our new guy isn't even Ranse Stoddard:

You've got to admit there's a physical resemblance, too.

But let's hope he's as lucky as his role model. Because what usually happens to amateurs isn't good:

Even the whores around you pack up and leave.

And then the credits roll.

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