My personal musings about anything that gets on my radar screen--heavily dominated by politics.


The Main Event

So the President gave this little speech today. . . (link here).

And, in truth, the only thing "little" about it is the fact that it fits on three pages if I set the font size right.

And it all starts with the "Big Idea"--and what a whopper this one is:

So it is the policy of the United States to seek and support the growth of democratic movements and institutions in every nation and culture, with the ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our world

You know, not a big agenda.

I love this speech. I did not get a chance to hear the President deliver it (day job, you know), but reading it, I'm left with the impression that this is a speech for the ages. So many little gems within--I'll just list a few of my favorites.

The great objective of ending tyranny is the concentrated work of generations. The difficulty of the task is no excuse for avoiding it. Not only enlisting the generations yet to come in this all-encompassing struggle, but challenging those who do not want to take up the effort to get on the train.

We will encourage reform in other governments by making clear that success in our relations will require the decent treatment of their own people. America's belief in human dignity will guide our policies, yet rights must be more than the grudging concessions of dictators; they are secured by free dissent and the participation of the governed. In the long run, there is no justice without freedom, and there can be no human rights without human liberty. I've often thought this very thing whenever I get stuck behind some moron with the bumper sticker "There can be no peace without justice." Of course, it seems obvious that justice is only a byproduct of a free judiciary ruling on merits of law; just too many people would rather define peace as "appeasement", and ultimately "slavery." This is the U.N.'s problem--they think stability is an acceptable substitute for freedom.

All Americans have witnessed this idealism, and some for the first time. I ask our youngest citizens to believe the evidence of your eyes. You have seen duty and allegiance in the determined faces of our soldiers. You have seen that life is fragile, and evil is real, and courage triumphs. Make the choice to serve in a cause larger than your wants, larger than yourself - and in your days you will add not just to the wealth of our country, but to its character. Very Kennedy-esque, and very important and appropriate.

If the Bush Doctrine sees significant progress over the next four years, I think it likely that we are living in a time of Presidential greatness. The Presidency of George W. Bush might go down as the single most important transformative event in world affairs for the 21st century, and I am proud to be living in such times.

Of course, such an ambitious agenda will have a hard time coming to fruition, particularly in four years. Nonetheless, it is good to strive, to seek, and to reach out. On such dreams are the best angels of our nature given flight.

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