Monday, June 30, 2008

Whoa there, Wesley


If Barack Obama wants to do himself a favor, he'll lock retired Gen. Wesley Clark in a padded room until after the election in November. Clark, a onetime presidential candidate shown above with Obama, is belittling John McCain's military service. Appearing on CBS' "Face the Nation," Clark said McCain might be a hero, but he didn't have sufficient "command experience." "That large squadron in the Navy that he commanded - that wasn't a wartime squadron," said Clark. Huh? I guess only wartime squadrons require administrative and management skills. The program's moderator, the venerable Bob Schieffer, noted that Clark's favored candidate, Obama, also did not have that kind of command experience, nor had he piloted a fighter plane and been shot down over enemy lines, as McCain was in Vietnam. Replied Clark, "Well, I don't think riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to be president." Clark makes it sound as if McCain was just a passenger on a joyride over Hanoi. And I think the courage McCain showed during five-plus years as a prisoner of war, enduring brutal beatings and other torture, says something about the man's character. Clark is coming off as an idiot, and he's just drawing attention to the fact that Obama has no military experience, which is important to some voters. Clark should just shut up, and Obama, if he's smart, will see that he does.

Labels:

12 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did George Bush have command experience in the military? Or Cheney? Or either of the Clintons? I don't know enough about McCain's war record to trash the man, but it takes more than serving in the military -- and even being shot down -- to qualify as a hero.

June 30, 2008 at 11:52 AM  
Blogger Brant said...

Whether McCain was a "hero" is a matter of interpretation. What's goofy here is Clark's standards for being president. Apparently because of his own "command experience," he thought he was qualified to be president. But I'm really not sure how commanding troops prepares one to deal with issues such as the subprime mortgage crisis, the energy crisis or our country's education problems.

June 30, 2008 at 11:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I always though Wesley Clark was a dark horse in the Obama veepstakes, and I think he slipped even further down the list after this comment. If Obama decides to pick someone with a military background, Sen. Jim Webb of Virginia seems to be a far more likely pick.

--Brad Hundt

June 30, 2008 at 2:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree that commanding troops trained to take orders is far different from being "commander in chief" as president. Any president relies on his military advisers. Anyone who thinks Bush came up with tactical ideas in Iraq and Afghanistan is dreaming.

June 30, 2008 at 4:14 PM  
Blogger Ellipses said...

So, is Obama locked into choosing ex-military as VP to counterweight his position on the war? Is an ex-general or war hero necessary for an Obama win or is it just insurance? Could it end up being a detriment? A lot of people would say that this is Obama's race to lose... What a race it would be if Obama takes an old, white military man as his VP and McCain goes with a black female (Rice?)... As much as this race has broken through barriers on race, gender, and overall politicking, it has been rather devoid of real fireworks (Reverend Wright and McCain's age don't count)... I think the real theatre is yet to come... and it will be at the hands of the right hand men (or women) that are selected...

-ellipses

June 30, 2008 at 9:50 PM  
Blogger Brant said...

I've always had a lot of respect for Sen. Olympia Snowe of Maine, and I think that if Obama really wanted to break the mold, he could practice what he preaches about bridging the partisan divide by selecting someone like her, a moderate Republican who could help with the women's vote, the moderate undecideds and independents. And I saw somewhere today that Mitt Romney is apparently the leading contender to be McCain's running mate. I think that would be a disaster for McCain. The religious right is already iffy on McCain, and if he picks a Mormon as his running might, that might send some of them over the edge. Also, and this is just my opinion, of all the Republican candidates who were running this year, Romney easily seemed to be the slimiest and most weasely. There's a reason he was running third behind McCain, whose candidacy once seemed doomed, and Huckabee, who appealed to the religious right and few others.

June 30, 2008 at 11:45 PM  
Blogger Brant said...

I meant running mate, not might. It's been a long, long day.

June 30, 2008 at 11:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

For Obama, Jim Webb has the advantage of having also been an opponent of the Iraq war, and coming from a state that Obama would like to flip from red to blue. If I were in the Obama brain trust, Webb would be at the top of my list of veep picks, along with Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland.

--Brad Hundt

July 1, 2008 at 12:52 PM  
Blogger Brant said...

Strickland seems like a very solid pick. He says he's not interested, but a lot of people say that until they're asked. Webb would also be a good choice, but Obama could conceivably win Virginia without him. I see no way he wins Ohio without Strickland.

July 1, 2008 at 1:40 PM  
Blogger Greg said...

Obama/Rambo 08

July 2, 2008 at 9:31 AM  
Blogger Brant said...

I guess that cover the military experience angle.

July 2, 2008 at 9:42 AM  
Blogger Ellipses said...

I am going to get some bumper stickers and t-shirts printed with that on it... Words cannot describe the awesome.

-ellipses

July 2, 2008 at 10:03 AM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home