Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Please, Mr. Obama, Disarm.

I did not watch the president's speech last night.  I did, however, read the speech, and I found it uninspired and uninspiring.  I've long supported the war in Afghanistan, though recently I've been thinking it's time to just get out.  Perhaps Mr. Obama's plan will work.  I hope it will.  If he's going to mortgage the lives of so many soldiers, I hope there is a happy ending.

But I'm really skeptical.  Further, I don't think he actually laid out a viable case supporting the war.  That's not to say that there isn't one, just that he didn't make it.  Of course, TV orations aren't really the forum for deep policy analysis, so I'm willing to cut him some slack.

Nick Gillespie has a nice quick reaction to the speech at Reason:
While I think the 2003 invasion and subsequent occupation of Iraq was never warranted, I think the invasion of Afghanistan was a legitimate use of American military power. The country was on the hunt for the people behind the 9/11 attacks and the Taliban government was clearly working hand in glove with them. When the trail went cold, the reason for us being in Afghanistan became far less clear. Are we nation or region building there? And if so, don't the myriad objections that Democrats and Republicans alike used to throw up in opposition to such efforts apply? If it's all about gutting al Qaeda and de-surging the resurgent Taliban, then what's with the timetable for exit?
Of course, the whole reason for this post - and especially the title - was to show this clip of Smashing Pumpkins playing at the '94 MTV Awards:

I was starting my final year of high school when this was aired.  I had a lot of friends in bands (including some I played with).  Most of my friends thought this sucked.  One of my friends agreed with me that it was an awesome performance.  He's the one I'm still friends with fifteen years later.

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