Politics

Joe Scarborough Talks Recklessness, Restraint

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For my money, Scarborough is one of the best political talking heads around. He’s sincere, thoughtful and genuinely seems like he wants to get to the bottom of the issues.

Recently he penned a must read column over at Huffington Post that’s already feels timeless.

Here’s how he starts…

Ten years ago, Charles Krauthammer took note of what seemed to be conventional wisdom at the turn of the century: that the United States dominated the world economically, culturally and militarily in a way that no other empire had done since imperial Rome. The Washington Post columnist was right, but not for long. […]

Americans’ hubris at the end of the 20th Century gave way to an time of cynicism and doubt. In a few short years, our unipolar world became multipolar and America looked less like Julius Caesar’s Rome than an empire besieged by an assortment of invading barbarians.

His strategy is straight forward…

  1. THE END TO RECKLESSNESS OVERSEAS
  2. Over the past decade, America has found itself bogged down by two occupations that drained our Republic of blood, treasure and credibility. And while we have been exhausting our resources in the pursuit of war, China has been making strategic gains across Asia, Africa and with our economic allies.

    America can no longer afford to be the world’s policeman. Instead, we should only go to war as a last resort and then follow the strategy laid out by Colin Powell before the first Iraq War: “We will find the enemy, we will cut off the enemy, we will kill the enemy and we will come home.”

  3. THE END TO RECKLESSNESS AT HOME
  4. George W. Bush decided to increase spending at record rates at the same time he added a $7 trillion debt to Medicare, passed massive tax cuts and fought two wars on the other side of the globe. Choosing guns and butter–and trillions of dollars for a new entitlement program–put America’s future in the hands of foreign creditors.

    President Bush inherited a $5.7 trillion debt and doubled it.

    Barack Obama inherited a $11 trillion national debt and his budget plans will double that debt over the next decade.

    By the time the 44th president leaves office, his own administration admits that US debt will equal 100% of America’s GDP.

  5. THE END TO RECKLESSNESS IN OUR RHETORIC
  6. Ask a Republican why they refuse to give President Obama the benefit of any doubt and they will tell you it is because of how badly Democrats treated George W. Bush. But Democrats justified those attacks against Bush by pointing to the terrible treatment that Republicans like myself gave Bill Clinton in the 1990s. Many Republicans who attacked Clinton without pause pointed back to the liberal establishment’s harsh, personal attacks against Clarence Thomas, Robert Bork, Ronald Reagan and Richard Nixon.

    Unfortunately, there will always be party hacks and political extremists on both sides. But my belief is in this new decade, there will be a growing majority of Americans who will rise to the challenges that face us over the next decade and punish politicians who engage in nasty political campaigns.

This is my belief too, although Scarborough and I certainly differ about reforming health care. But there’s a lot we line up on here, and if an independent candidate can capture the zeitgeist Scarborough sums up here (Maybe as a campaign slogan? “An End To Recklessness?”) it could resonate.

Thoughts?