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Re: Pakistan and the candidates



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Victor, if you hadn’t mentioned it, I don’t think I’d have noticed Bill Richardson’s response to Miss Bhutto’s killing. But it may rank as the single most idiotic contribution to the day’s verbiage:

Her death, and the deaths of so many of her supporters, is more than just a tragedy. It is a testament to the will of the Pakistani people to see democracy restored.  

Er, no. It’s a testament to the ease with which “democracy” can be thwarted by those determined to do so. So what now? I’d always swallowed the conventional wisdom that Governor Richardson was an unglamorous candidate but far more sober and substantial and experienced in world affairs than the glitzier Dems. Instead, he strings the buzzwords and bromides together in apparently random fashion and gives Pakistan its marching orders:

President Bush should press Musharraf to step aside, and a broad-based coalition government, consisting of all the democratic parties, should be formed immediately… It is in the interests of the US that there be a democratic Pakistan that relentlessly hunts down terrorists. 

Gotcha. What do we want? A broad-based coalition government that relentlessly hunts down terrorists and has a great prescription drug plan for seniors! When do we want it? Now! Well, gee, it would be unfair to let anybody else take credit for such a viable plan. Why doesn’t Governor Richardson jet in and run for the Pakistani parliament himself? First rally in Rawalpindi on Saturday?

This kind of “expertise” is why so many people hold politicians in contempt. 



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