Thursday, January 26, 2006

Democracies do not invade their neighbors... unless...

Yesterdays landslide victory by Hamas in the Palestinian elections brings to mind the assertion by president Bush that "We know that democracies do not forment [sic] terror or invade their neighbors".

As I noted in a a previous post, this can even be said of America, because we being the world superpower, have no need to invade our neighbors when we can project power half the world away and invade countries that do not border us.

But the quote noted above by the president brings to mind a question. How is it that one man can be so hopelessly wrong every time he opens his mouth? It is like the fates hear the word of Bush and conspire to ruin him. How could he possibly have known when he was talking up the peacefulness of democracies that a group which advocated the destruction of Israel would win the Palestinian election? Add this Bush contention to the growing heap of flat out wrong assertions by this bumblehead and would somebody please do the world a favor by pouring gas on the pile and tossing on a match?

Let us consider another conundrum presented by yesterdays election. In a press conference today , (click that link at your own risk, as that links to the white house web site and they do not seem particularly eager to protect your privacy these days) president Bush made this outlandish comment:
Q Are you cautioning Prime Minister Abbas not to resign? And --

THE PRESIDENT: We'd like him to stay in power. I mean, we'd like to stay in office. He is in power, we'd like him to stay in office.
And your question on Abbas was a good one. And our message to him was, we would hope he would stay in office and work to move the process forward.
This wish for a political leader to stay in office after his opposition has swept the election seems if anything to me to be fundamentally undemocratic. It would be similar to Democrats sweeping the 2006 mid term elections, but allowing Dennis Hastert or Bill Frist to remain as speaker of the house and senate majority leader. When elections are lost by the party in power, generally speaking (by generally I mean 100% of the time in lawful democracies) the leadership positions are taken by the winning party.

I suppose this would be a good time to wonder at the Freudian slip of the president in the answer he gave. When he said "we'd like to stay in office" we really have to wonder if deep in his inner being the president was not addressing the issue of having been found to be breaking the law repeatedly and possibly being impeached. Perhaps we should also consider the seeming disregard of the president to the results of elections when those results do not fit his vision of how things ought to be when looking at this comment. The lessons of Florida 2000 certainly have not been lost on this administration.

Hamas will find that keeping the buses running on time, getting the garbage picked up and keeping the lights on is considerably more difficult than marching with banners and throwing rocks.

They'll do fine or they'll be replaced by the Palestinians, just like here.

The destruction of Israel stuff will wear off as politics becomes local in the Territories.
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