Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Mitch Daniels: First Things First?

Although Mitch Daniels is in the 'second tier' of possible (R) Presidential candidates, he has his priorities straight--in some regards.

...He said, “If we go broke, no one will follow a pauper.” At least temporarily, he said, we can’t maintain all our commitments. But if our foes don’t take a break, what do we do? Should we pull up stakes in Iraq and Afghanistan and hack away at the defense budget? It’s not clear whether he has thought these issues through, or whether he views foreign policy as anything more than a cost-control issue.

Apparently the NeoCon/WarParty interviewer did not like Daniels' weltanschauung.

Too bad. See, Ms. Rubin, the task of the US Government is to defend the US. Not Europe. Not Japan. Not Korea. Not whatever OTHER flea-bitten territory comes to mind.

Just the US. You can find that in the Constitution, Ms. Rubin. Read it someday...

On the other hand, Daniels exhibits some confusion regarding the First Things.

I asked if, as president, he would issue an executive order to reinstate Reagan's "Mexico City Policy" his first week in office. (Obama revoked the policy during his first week in office.) Daniels replied, "I don't know."

Well, Mitch, there are some things about which you MUST "know." And you failed that test.

HT:CMR, Agitator


Grim said...

I read the Constitution differently on this point. You'll notice that the Founders provide for defensive forces, both public and private -- to whit, the ability for Congress to appropriate for an army and to regulate the militia. However, the militia is to be called into Federal service only for specific reasons, and the Army they intended not to be a standing one, but one that would last no longer than two years.

However, it also provides for expeditionary forces, both public and private: to whit, a Navy, for whom the Congress may provide unlimited appropriations, and "letters of marque and reprisal," which license privateers to raid enemy shipping.

So, expeditionary warfighting is in the original mandate; the United States Navy, the Marine Corps, and the privateers were what the Founders hoped to use as their main and normal warfighting elements. That's easy to read as "fight them over there, so we don't have to fight them here."

Dad29 said...

I don't know if I'd characterize 'blowing up pirates' as 'war-fighting.' (And, by the way, the Muslims just LOVE to be non-State actors, don't they?)

And it seems to me that G Washington was chary of using the US' armed forces overseas, even prospectively.

We managed to avoid it until T. Roosevelt, notorious Progressive, got his hands on the triggers.

Grim said...

Well, as to that, I'd contend that we did so regularly long before T. Rex. The Texas war of independence was fought mostly with irregular elements on foreign soil, but with US backing; the Mexican War was certainly expeditionary ("from the Halls of Montezuma!"); we used privateers to fight the British to a standstill in 1812, even though they were able to win major land victories until the Battle of New Orleans (with the privateering forcing a treaty before then); and you should really look at the role of American-based filibusters in shaping Latin America during the 19th Century.

And, of course, there was that little invasion of Canada led by the Irish veterans of the Civil War. It was meant to distract British attention from a Fenian uprising meant to seize control of Ireland itself.

neomom said...

I am 100% pro-life, but I agree with Daniels on putting fiscal sanity front and center. Social issues don't have to get kicked off the bus, but they don't need to be driving right now.

The Dems got into power by lying about focusing on fiscal sanity, not by pushing their agenda. But we see what they have been doing with that power.

The Conservatives, like Daniels, will need to do the same. You don't give the Progressives and their Media lapdogs ammo to shoot you with. We are still dealing with the "general public" here.

Just sayin'