On her initial tour abroad, Sec. Clinton announced that she would follow an approach that “values what others have to say”: “Too often in the recent past, our government has acted reflexively before considering available facts and evidence or hearing the perspectives of others.” And then she promised a policy “neither impulsive nor ideological.”
At some point the unifying, bipartisan Obama team should cease all this ad nauseam “Bush did it” since this perpetual campaign mode, when taken abroad, is not healthy for the country in all too many ways:
1) it assures enemies that their past problems with the U.S. were largely of our own making due to our impulsiveness or ideology, not the fault of their own, or intrinsic differences;
2) it assures allies that there are not so much honest differences in our relationship as much as agreement that Bush et al were toxic (as if Germany otherwise would have fought well in Afghanistan, and now of course will);
3) it has a short shelf life: we are into the second month of the Obama administration and have seen really nothing new abroad other than the “we’re not Bush”;
4) it only sets up more of the same hypocrisy of what we have seen–hubris leading to nemesis–as inevitably in the bad/worse choices to come, Ms. Clinton will find herself often simply continuing existing (Bush) policy, and so like Obama on rendition, FISA the Patriot Act, Iraq, etc. adopt what she trashed;
5) very quickly Team Obama is using up their good will, as the American people are now quite aware of the tired modus operandi–talk of unity, togetherness, bipartisanship, and then trash your predecessor to lower expectations and magnify your own agenda.
Time to get a life…