The Corner

National Service/Bush Doctrine

Jonah — Should we have more corps? Or should we have a few, well chosen corpses?

Andy and Yuval both explain well that the Bush Doctrine is a multi-faceted policy, not clearly defined, and only intermittently adhered to in any of its particulars. David Gergen — of all people — on CNN pointed out that the phrase is, for the most part, inside DC/foreign policy establishment jargon. It is not used widely in the media, even in more serious discussions of whichever aspect is under scrutiny. So a well read state-level political leader, who followed the Bush Administration foreign policy in, say, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the WSJ, or on ABC news (God help us), would not necessarily have a deep field of references. It was the clearest “gotcha” moment of the interview.

Is it fair to ask a would-be vice president these questions? Sure. But I just don’t recall seeing anyone quiz Barack Obama on the details of any particular set of policies early on (or later). And, for the record, it just looks condescending and inappropriate for one of the great minds of the national media to sit, notebook in hand, quizzing this younger woman, as someone said, as if she were a grad student. Just physically, in those chairs, him leaning back and her leaning in, costs her the appearance of power. This is not how we usually get to know Governors. Did anyone do this to Bill Clinton when he came from the hinterland? Jimmy Carter? (That might have been helpful…)

Actually, the set up made the previously invariably likeable Charlie Gibson seem like a condescending jerk. Uh oh…there goes the brand.

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