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What Is the "Bush Doctrine"?

Today's Washington Post has a front-page story headlined "Many Versions of 'Bush Doctrine.'" Over on the op-ed page, Charles Krauthammer -- apparently the first pundit to coin the phrase, and a critic of Palin's nomination -- suggests there are at least four "Bush Doctrines," and the one Charles Gibson elucidated is the wrong one. For what it's worth, I don't know whether I would have identified the "right" definition of the "Bush Doctrine" if asked the same question, and I haven't seen the full interview yet, so I don't have an opinion of Palin's performance on this, or other, questions.

John (mail):
Oddly (though perhaps not), I thought the problem was not so much the ambiguity of "The Bush Doctrine" as it was the unbelievable snootiness of Gibson--not only in connection with that question, but with the interview as a whole. He came across as some one trying to put Palin down, rather than trying to get information.
9.13.2008 10:28am
taney71:
John:

You hit the nail of its head. My wife started yelling at the TV when watching Gibson question Palin. I wasn't nearly as upset. I thought Gibson was a bit over the top. I hate when his glasses fell to the end of his nose. It looked like he was trying to be superior to Palin.

Still I remember the Lazio v. Clinton debate in 2000 when Lazio walked over to Hillary. Women then got all upset because Lazio had "violate" Hillary's space. I tend to think the gender card can be played too much if a female candidate doesn't watch out.

Still in this case Gibson looks to be largely to blame. His was a bit rude and didn't know what he was talking about at times. Geeezz, at least get your quotes right Gibson!
9.13.2008 10:33am
Big E:
Oh come on people, it's obvious she had no idea what the Bush doctrine was. Quit trying to defend her ignorance. Gibson could tell she didn't know and instead of asking the right question, "Can you define the Bush doctrine?" he gave her an out, which she flubbed.
9.13.2008 10:41am
taney71:
Big E:

Well, since you seem to know what the Bush Doctrine is please inform us. I still would have trouble answering that question after having a few days to figure out the answer.
9.13.2008 10:44am
VincentPaul (mail):
Since Gibson didn't know (the Bush Doctrine) himself, just how was it that he, "could tell she didn't know"?
9.13.2008 10:47am
BZ (mail):
Well, I've followed the "Bush doctrine" pretty closely, and I "had no idea what the Bush doctrine was" when he asked that question. When I heard the question during the interview, my first thought was "which one?" I knew of at least four. I remember it first as "we're going to promote democracy aggressively and unilaterally," which is how it was originally defined by Krauthammer prior to 9/11. But it became clear that Gibson was interested in a later version, which can be summarized as "we won't allow you the first punch."
9.13.2008 10:47am
Richard Aubrey (mail):
The Bush Doctrine is whatever anybody says it is.
I have a relation who insists it clearly calls for genocide.
Since Bush didn't name it, it isn't official. If it isn't official, Gibson was in a position to contradict Palin no matter what she said, simply by making up something.
Which, no doubt, he would have done.
9.13.2008 10:48am
Rooster:
Taney71:

It's a good thing you're not running for office.
...
Are any of you pro-Palin folks actually willing to say that Sarah Palin has a clue about foreign affairs? Of course not. So quit trying to veil her ignorance. I'm sure you'll have lots of great things to say about your candidate when Sean Hannity is done with her in her next "interview."

The McCain campaign is a farce.
9.13.2008 10:51am
M (mail):
Jonathan- I don't mind so much you feeling a bit confused about what was at issue since you're not presenting yourself as being ready to be vice president (and quite possibly president, given McCain's age and health.) That's what's silly about this "many people don't know!" defense. As for the "there are many doctrines!" defense, the right answer then would have been to specify one or more and ask if that's what was meant, not this incoherent "His world view?" answer. For those needing a quick review of the Bush Doctrine in question, here's a very nice summary of how it works, one that fits quite well with the account as delivered by Bush in early 2002, by someone more clever than I:

Well, the Bush doctrine works like this: imagine two countries, A and B. A asserts the right to hegemony in a region of the world,a dn begins a program of military conquest. B demands that A stop, and puts an embargo on shipment of strategic materials like oil to A. B also assembles its fleet at a nearby naval base.

One Sunday morning, A's planes apepar over B's naval base, and in a surprise attack, sink much of A's fleet. Preemptive action to remove a potential threat--the Bush Doctrine in action!
9.13.2008 10:51am
Shertaugh:
Whatever the "Bush Doctrine" is, a good answer is not just his "world view". That tells the listener nothing and shows no depth in the speaker. Something more was needed -- any of the four versions now floating around. But "world view"? C'mon.
9.13.2008 10:52am
Big E:
This is really sad, are you people so invested in Republican politics that you have to warp reality to cover for an obviously flawed candidate? The Bush Doctrine: the right to preemptively strike threats before they are fully formed.

If you read the National Review or the Weekly Standard, you would know this. Here's my advise for all the Palin fanatics. Take a deep breath, switch to decaf, and for god's sake think about the future of our country.
9.13.2008 10:55am
taney71:
Rooster:

Probably so. That doesn't negated the issue that there are multiple versions of the Bush Doctrine.

I still don't understand why people who attack Palin are so concerned with her experience as Vice President and not Obama's as President? Seriously, Palin has more experience than Obama. They both have ZERO foreign policy experience.
9.13.2008 10:56am
taney71:
Big E:

I'll turn your words around:

Here's my advise for all the Palin Obama fanatics. Take a deep breath, switch to decaf, and for god's sake think about the future of our country.


Obama is running for President; Palin is not. I would give my right arm if the MSM would give him one hard interview.
9.13.2008 10:59am
rarango (mail):
And can we assume, BigE that you stand above the crowds, totally non-partisan, analyze all the issues creating a spread sheet, compute opportunity costs and evaluate the candidates on those issues putting aside any partisanship? and then vote against republicans? That would be my guess, but if I were a mind reader I wouldnt be here--I'd be in Vegas.
9.13.2008 11:00am
Big E:
rarango,
I made no such claims. But at least I have the intellectual honesty to call out when need be. Do I think Obama is the perfect candidate? Not hardly, but as with every election since 1988 I again have to choose between the lesser of two evils. In this election I happen to think it's Obama/Biden.
9.13.2008 11:11am
Big E:
it appears my laptop cutout a phrase there:

That should be: ...intellectual honesty to call out both sides when need be.
9.13.2008 11:12am
sputnik (mail):
If I were in any public foreign policy debate today, and my adversary were to raise the Bush doctrine, both I and the audience would assume — unless my interlocutor annotated the reference otherwise — that he was speaking about the grandly proclaimed (and widely attacked) freedom agenda of the Bush administration. ~Charles Krauthammer

And then I and most other reasonably well-informed people would say that Krauthammer, his adversary and the audience also did not understand what the Bush Doctrine was. Also, Palin apologists should get their story straight–if the “freedom agenda” is the first thing that would spring to everyone’s mind on hearing the phrase, why do so many of her defenders think otherwise?

The main innovation of the Bush administration in U.S. foreign policy, the one for which he will be remembered for good or ill, is the placement of preventive war as a means of nonproliferation and antiterrorism at the center of national security strategy. Related to this is the abandonment of traditional concepts of deterrence and containment. Democracy promotion as stated U.S. policy dates back at least to the Carter administration, and the “freedom agenda” has rhetorical precedents as far back as Kennedy’s Inaugural. What Bush did with democracy promotion that was distinctive was to marry this terrible idea to his existing terrible idea of waging preventive war against “rogue” states. The “freedom agenda” did not replace and eliminate the earlier iteration of the Bush Doctrine, but formalized the administration’s mad ideological fixation on democratization as an addition to that Doctrine.

Suffice it to say that this line of defending Palin can only underscore how little she knows, since her defenders seem to want to emphasize how complicated and, Heaven help us, nuanced the subject is, which just drives home how unsatisfactory it is that she had to wait to hear Gibson’s definition (which essentially used the President’s own words) in order to say anything coherent about it. If Gibson is wrong, as Palin’s defenders are so happy to point out, her parroting of his definition is doubly embarrassing, since it shows that she had no definition of her own and she also couldn’t recognize Gibson’s mistake. Rather like the line of attack from Obama supporters against Palin’s inexperience, which just reminded everyone how relatively inexperienced Obama was, ridiculing Charlie Gibson as clueless is just makes it painfully obvious how much more clueless Palin is.
9.13.2008 11:14am
SecurityGeek:
If Palin was confused about what part of Bush's foreign policy Gibson was asking about, then she would have said something like

"Do you mean the idea of preventative strikes, Charlie? Well, then I support it when..."

or

"My memory of the Bush Doctrine is the President's speech after 9/11, when he told states that harbor terrorists 'You are with us or you are against us'. Of course I agree..."

Instead, she paused, searched through the mental flash cards she had been prepped with, and asked:

“In what respect? His world-view?”

It's clear that, despite the mental gymnastics being performed by otherwise intelligent Republicans, she didn't only not know what the Bush Doctrine is, but doesn't know that:

"President's Name" + "Doctrine" = A President's enunciation of a fundamental principal that will guide his foreign policy.

You guys are kidding yourselves with the "Palin is a foreign policy genius who was questioning the framing of the question" crap. SHE DIDN'T KNOW! Instead of admitting she made a mistake, folks like Prof. Adler are only demonstrating that they care much more about winning or beating Obama than about the safety of our country. Seriously, you are embarrassing yourselves and the term conservative.
9.13.2008 11:18am
markH (mail):
She had no idea what he was talking about and made a decent go at fishing for a clue. Gibson didn't bite so she took a shot.

Gibson's answer would have gotten at least half credit on a test, Palin's zero.

It matters. The typical poster at VC, regardless of their political leaning, could come up with one or more of the components ( or versions ) of the Bush Doctrine.


She should at least known that there is such a thing.

She failed. Move along.
9.13.2008 11:34am
Big E:
I think it's telling that Palin's next and only other scheduled interview is with Sean Hannity.
9.13.2008 11:35am
sputnik (mail):
Let's talk about pathetic Krauthammer.

In a flailing and hilarious attempt to defend Sarah Palin's interview with Charlie Gibson, the most adamant neocon at the WashPost admits that:

-- The "Bush Doctrine" actually changes all the time, and is thus putty in the hands of neocon practitioners of the Trotskyite dialectic;

-- The Bush Doctrine began as an assertion of US superiority and radical exceptionalism, thus placing Bush above all international law and norms;

-- After 9-11, the Bush doctrine (already established) then morphed into the Manichaean "Us = pure good, Them = pure evil" (right out of 1984 and NewSpeak), which removes all moral limits on the power of "The Decider";

-- The Bush Doctrine then morphed into a justification of preemptive war, just in time to invade Iraq. The dialectic absolves the Bush Administration from explaining away the lies that they either propounded or swallowed in order to get to this stage, and justifies his continual defiance of the Constitution;

-- The Bush Doctrine then changed once more into a demand that the U.S. spread "democracy" throughout the world, which is not a departure from its earlier emanations, but the sum of all of them: in the name of totalitarian democracy (are there any limits? No.), Bush's ideological ends justify any and all means that he might choose to take.

Krauthammer's unguarded candor about the Bush Doctrine flows -- naturally -- from his unbounded egotism: "I was the first to use the term," he crows, But while he insists that there were four different Bush Doctrines, he actually proves that there is only one: Bush is completely above the law -- period, whichever way you cut it. first, international law; then, the moral law; then, constitutional law; and last, "The Laws of Nature and of Nature's God" of Jefferson's Declaration.

In sum, Krauthammer has carefully described how the Bush Doctrine constitutes the neocon Emancipation Proclamation from all international, moral, constitutional, and natural law.
And he ought to know.
9.13.2008 11:43am
Grover Gardner (mail):

I haven't seen the full interview yet, so I don't have an opinion of Palin's performance on this, or other, questions.


"...but I'm blogging about it and linking to Krauthammer's article regardless."
9.13.2008 12:01pm
Al (mail):

But while he insists that there were four different Bush Doctrines, he actually proves that there is only one: Bush is completely above the law -- period, whichever way you cut it.


Thanks, sputnik. You demonstrate the problem with "Do you agree with the Bush Doctrine?" more effectively than even the most rabid Palin supporter could. Good work!
9.13.2008 12:05pm
subpatre (mail):
'Sputnik' reveals the Left's real problems with Palin's answer on the Bush Doctrine; she is not Bush. She doesn't necessarily approve (or disapprove) of his policies.

Obama can't win against McCain or Palin, but he could win if he runs against Bush; so the Left invents the Bush=Hitler McCain. It's way too much of a stretch, and it's not working.

As much as they want her to be it, Palin doesn't fit the 'neocon' caricature --the permanent strawman-- that the Obamabots so desperately need.
9.13.2008 12:13pm
Blar (mail) (www):
The problem with Palin's answer is that Gibson kept filling in more details about what he meant and Palin continued to not understand what he was talking about. After she suggested that the Bush Doctrine was "his world view," Gibson specified "No, the Bush doctrine, enunciated September 2002, before the Iraq war." At that point, anyone who had been following the foreign policy debate about the Iraq war should know exactly what Bush Doctrine Gibson was talking about: the doctrine of preemption. But Palin still didn't get it, and her answer was something irrelevant about "rid[ding] this world of Islamic extremism, terrorists who are hell bent on destroying our nation."

Then Gibson spelled it out exactly what he meant, explaining "The Bush doctrine, as I understand it, is that we have the right of anticipatory self-defense, that we have the right to a preemptive strike against any other country that we think is going to attack us." And again, Palin's answer was off: "If there is legitimate and enough intelligence that tells us that a strike is imminent against American people, we have every right to defend our country." But that's not the Bush doctrine. The conventional wisdom about preemption, pre-Bush, was that countries have a right to strike first to preempt an imminent attack. Bush's argument was that should go to war even if we're not sure that the threat is imminent. We cannot wait for "the smoking gun that could come in the form of a mushroom cloud" and all that.

When to go to war is one of the most important questions that the White House faces, and Sarah Palin is not familiar with the arguments that we've been having about that question over the past 6 years.
9.13.2008 12:27pm
Richard Aubrey (mail):
Sputnik told us what he thinks (and thinks of) his version of the Bush Doctrine.
What requires anybody else to think that's the Bush Doctrine?
9.13.2008 12:30pm
sputnik (mail):
some of the more literate republicans have expressed reservations about Sarah Palin’s qualifications, but most of them see her total lack of knowledge about world affairs to be a badge of honor. Thinking about stuff? Weighing costs and benefits? Pffft, that’s what liberals have done for years and look where it’s gotten us! Think about all the reckless wars we could’ve waged if liberals hadn’t gotten in the way! And they have the nerve to teach our kids that we evolved from apes!!!

The GOP has become one giant St00p1d Machine. They revel in being ignorant about everything, and anyone who actually has knowledge about a given topic is treated at best as suspect. The fact that Sarah Palin has, at least for the moment, been a boon to McCain’s campaign is the dark reflection of a nation that has lost its ability to think. American popular culture has done to us in 50 years what centuries of drinking lead-poisoned water did to the Romans. If you ever wanted evidence that the United States is in its official decline period, Sarah Palin is it.

Oh, and AL and subpatre, that was actually conservative position in both of my previous posts.
Ignorance is not a blessing , regardless of what Rush is telling you....
9.13.2008 12:39pm
Al (mail):

The GOP has become one giant St00p1d Machine. They revel in being ignorant about everything, and anyone who actually has knowledge about a given topic is treated at best as suspect.


I'm always amused at the way Democrats claim that Republicans are the stupid and ignorant ones, but then turn around and complain about how their voters can't read a ballot, find their way to the polling station, or figure out what day is election day.


American popular culture has done to us in 50 years what centuries of drinking lead-poisoned water did to the Romans.


Yep, must be all those stupid and evil Republicans who have been responsible for shaping popular culture in the last 50 years, right?


If you ever wanted evidence that the United States is in its official decline period, Sarah Palin is it.


She's not that bad...maybe it just looks that way when you compare her to the intellectual and political giants of the past, such as John Edwards.


Thinking about stuff? Weighing costs and benefits? Pffft, that’s what liberals have done for years and look where it’s gotten us! Think about all the reckless wars we could’ve waged if liberals hadn’t gotten in the way! And they have the nerve to teach our kids that we evolved from apes!!!


sputnik, some friendly advice: maybe you should stop digging.
9.13.2008 1:20pm
Roger Schlafly (www):
Gibson specified "No, the Bush doctrine, enunciated September 2002, before the Iraq war." At that point, anyone who had been following the foreign policy debate about the Iraq war should know exactly what Bush Doctrine Gibson was talking about: the doctrine of preemption.
Wrong. VP Cheney said in 2003:
The Bush Doctrine asserts that states supporting terrorists, or providing sanctuary for terrorists, will be deemed just as guilty of crimes as the terrorists themselves.
I challenge you to show me anyone saying in 2002 that the Bush Doctrine is the doctrine of preemption.
9.13.2008 1:45pm
JK:
While it was lame the way that Gibson asked Palin about the "Bush Doctrine," it was certainly legitmate to ask her opinion on preemptive war in general. It's very unfortunate that we get caught up in whether the question was phrased in a fair manner, rather than her answer to the substantive and fair question.
9.13.2008 1:47pm
CFG in IL (mail):
I bet when she said, "In what respect, Charlie?" she was confused about which version of the Bush Doctrine he was talking about. Snicker.
9.13.2008 1:55pm
Archit (www):
The President said in June 2002:

Under the Bush doctrine I said we'd use all resources, all available resources to fight off terror. And that includes working with our friends and allies to cut off money, to use diplomatic pressure, to convince -- to convince those that think they can traffick in terror that they're going to face a mighty coalition. And sometimes we use military force and sometimes we won't.


Or Ari Fleischer in April 2002:


Q: So if we're trying to understand the Bush doctrine now, is it that the Bush doctrine tolerates no terrorists or people who support them, but if you support terrorists and you're engaged in peace negotiations, then there is a category for you?

MR. FLEISCHER: The President has made clear around the world, in the wake of the attack against the United States, as he said in reference to the Taliban harboring al Qaeda, those who harbor terrorists will be treated like terrorists. And the President made that clear.
9.13.2008 2:10pm
Grover Gardner (mail):

I challenge you to show me anyone saying in 2002 that the Bush Doctrine is the doctrine of preemption.



Our security will require the best intelligence, to reveal threats hidden in caves and growing in laboratories. Our security will require modernizing domestic agencies such as the FBI, so they're prepared to act, and act quickly, against danger. Our security will require transforming the military you will lead -- a military that must be ready to strike at a moment's notice in any dark corner of the world. And our security will require all Americans to be forward-looking and resolute, to be ready for preemptive action when necessary to defend our liberty and to defend our lives.

--George Bush, West Point, June 2002
9.13.2008 2:12pm
Suzy (mail):
JK, I agree completely. Of what use is all this sophistry about the question, when what matters is the answer? We want to know when Palin thinks it is justifiable to go to war (or to hold states responsible for terrorists from within their own borders, or to unilaterally end treaties, or whatever the "doctrine" is taken to mean). My impression from the interview is that her answer is: far more often than I would consider prudent or necessary, especially given the present state of affairs. That's what matters to me, and it's scary, given that McCain also seems so gung-ho about using our troops. Honestly, I expected him to be much more cautious. I mistook him for Chuck Hagel--what a shame.
9.13.2008 2:13pm
Richard Aubrey (mail):
Suzy.
There is more than one reason we got to the current state of affairs.
From time to time, it might need some reinforcing. Or we'll be in some other state of affairs.
9.13.2008 2:20pm
Grover Gardner (mail):
The United States has long maintained the option of preemptive actions to counter a sufficient threat to our national security. The greater the threat, the greater is the risk of inaction— and the more compelling the case for taking anticipatory action to defend ourselves, even if uncertainty remains as to the time and place of the enemy’s attack. To forestall or prevent such hostile acts by our adversaries, the United States will, if necessary, act preemptively.

--The White House, National Security Strategy, September 2002
9.13.2008 2:23pm
Sally:
What I find amusing is that people are seriously debating the Bush Doctrine and yet the man himself is regarded by many as an inept buffoon. Bush himself may be unworthy of respect but apparently his ideas are not.
9.13.2008 2:24pm
jpe (mail):
No question Gibson was wrong, but that still doesn't change the lameness of Palin's response. Any of us would've told Gibson that he has to be more specific, that there been many terrible ideas labeled "the Bush doctrine."

Palin, who doesn't seem to have had any interest in, y'know, policy, didn't know that there have been Bush doctrines. So she took an amusingly bad stab in the dark.
9.13.2008 2:26pm
Bart (mail):
Palin was smart enough to smell the Gibson set-up on this question and answer with a question asking him to clarify what he meant.

There were a number of other set-up questions meant to solicit answers which would be diplomatically embarrassing to the Bush Administration and our allies like the Israel v. Iran and the US invasion of Pakistan questions. Our own diplomats would not answer those questions because we have delicate behind the scenes understandings with both countries. Palin needs to develop a pat non-answer to these questions like the Hillary reply that she does not answer hypothetical questions.

Palin obviously need more work on foreign policy as does nearly every governor tapped for VP. She has only had a whopping two weeks to bone up in between barnstorming the country in campaign events and taking care of state business long distance. Palin must be a fairly quick study to do as well as she did in a hostile interview meant to elicit gaffes. She needs to put in more work before the debate and more work still before (as appears increasingly likely) she takes office.
9.13.2008 2:28pm
Grover Gardner (mail):

No question Gibson was wrong


No, he wasn't. Read the comments just before yours, please. Preemptive military action was clearly and unequivocally stated as part of Bush's strategy for defense against terrorism in 2002.
9.13.2008 2:30pm
Grover Gardner (mail):

What I find amusing is that people are seriously debating the Bush Doctrine and yet the man himself is regarded by many as an inept buffoon.


An inept buffoon carrying on about preemptive strikes is something a lot of people don't find amusing.
9.13.2008 2:35pm
guess'd (mail):
She was asked an ambiguous question for record, in an adversarial environment. She asked the questioner to clarify the question by defining his terms. What attorney here would advise a client to do otherwise?

The critics seem to be projecting attributes onto Palin ("I can tell she's dumb, I can just tell") or engaging in bare sarcasm.

It seems to me that her reply was well within the range of responses that a reasonable person would make. If her performance could be improved by Monday morning quarterbacks, in retrospect and at their leisure, isn't that true of us all?
9.13.2008 2:38pm
Grover Gardner (mail):
It seems fair to say that Gibson was not wrong in pointing out that preemptive war is a key element of the Bush Doctrine. I think it's also fair to say that it's not the sum total of the Bush Doctrine in the way his question implied. But it is also clear that Palin was caught off guard by any reference to the Bush Doctrine, didn't have an answer prepared and avoided answering when Gibson clarified what he was asking.
9.13.2008 2:44pm
Michael McNeil (mail) (www):
Sputnik is also wrong about the Romans. Though Roman water systems did use lead piping, their acqueducts and distribution system did not employ spigots but rather ran continuously, and as a result there was no long stagnant interval (not to speak of the buildup of minerals lining the pipes that occurred, shielding the lead) preventing the concentration of dissolved lead in the water.
9.13.2008 2:49pm
Grover Gardner (mail):

If her performance could be improved by Monday morning quarterbacks, in retrospect and at their leisure, isn't that true of us all?


I was under the impression that part of the reason for holding the interview was to counter the claim that she didn't have any foreign policy experience. Am I wrong?
9.13.2008 2:53pm
Grover Gardner (mail):

Palin was smart enough to smell the Gibson set-up on this question and answer with a question asking him to clarify what he meant.


Well, I think it could go either way. She seemed caught of guard to me.

I tend to agree with the rest of your comment. Her strength as running mate and VP is going to be domestic and family issues, on which she will appeal to a lot of people. The foreign policy issue is something of canard, IMO, and presumes a situation in which she may well rise to the occasion if required to. She's not a stupid woman by any measure.
9.13.2008 2:59pm
Sally:
"An inept buffoon carrying on about preemptive strikes..."

But the idea is worthy of debate (or should be) or it wouldn't be sparking this much discussion. If it were as daft as you imply, it would have been presumably dismissed out of hand. It wasn't when the President first presented it (at a speech at West Point if I remember correctly) and it isn't now.

Serious people have criticized both the Bush and Clinton administrations for not doing more to prevent 9/11 and similar attacks. This particular formulation of the Bush Doctrine grew out of that criticism and the subsequent debate which, as I mentioned, is a debate that is apparently still worth having.

Very few people genuinely disagree with the notion that the United States is entitled to and should act to preempt an imminent threat. The devil is in the details though, as to what kind of preemption and what constitutes "imminent". I would have been more interested in hearing the Governor's answer to that sort of question, specifically put, rather than some vague so, what do you think of the Bush Doctrine? which as others have noted is open to more than one interpretation.

Not many Presidents have doctrines, at least using that term. Monroe and Truman are the only other ones I can think of. Theirs are still studied in the ivory halls of academia and presumably Bush's will be as well.

P.S. Oh, and please, no need to post that Iraq (the most obvious application of preemption in this context) and 9/11 were not connected. That wasn't the point, as much as many of the left might wish it had been.
9.13.2008 2:59pm
Al (mail):

But it is also clear that Palin was caught off guard by any reference to the Bush Doctrine, didn't have an answer prepared and avoided answering when Gibson clarified what he was asking.


A fair point.
9.13.2008 3:11pm
Grover Gardner (mail):

If it were as daft as you imply, it would have been presumably dismissed out of hand.


It's not the idea itself that's daft--it's the inept buffoon in charge of it that concerns people. ;-)

I think Gibson clarified what he meant but Palin wasn't prepared to answer a question about preemptive war as official policy. That's why you didn't hear the answer you would have liked to. Apart from that I agree with your comment.
9.13.2008 3:11pm
Grover Gardner (mail):
I think her own party put her on the spot (perhaps unnecessarily at this point), but she handled it well and showed that she's nobody's fool. The "flash card" approach (as another commenter so aptly phrased it) to making her seem on top of every issue may come off as silly from an academic standpoint, but it obviously satisfied the target audience.
9.13.2008 3:19pm
wfjag:

KERRY: The president always has the right, and always has had the right, for preemptive strike. That was a great doctrine throughout the Cold War. And it was always one of the things we argued about with respect to arms control.

No president, though all of American history, has ever ceded, and nor would I, the right to preempt in any way necessary to protect the United States of America.

Sen. John Kerry, Coral Gables, Fla., September 30, 2004, Transcript: First Presidential Debate, available on www.washingtonpost.com

I guess that Sen. Kerry didn't know it was the "Bush Doctrine" either -- and, apparently thought it's always been claimed by US Presidents. And, I don't recall, did anyone ask Sen. Edwards about the "Bush Doctrine"? What would he have thought it meant?
9.13.2008 3:20pm
DirtCrashr (mail) (www):
Apparently the Interview was edited by ABC to promote a less than stellar view of Palin - so much of this discussion is arguing over a yardstick that doesn't quite measure-up.
9.13.2008 3:23pm
Roger Schlafly (www):
Grover finds this, from 2002:
The United States has long maintained the option of preemptive actions to counter a sufficient threat to our national security.
Yes, that is right. The USA has long had such a policy. It is not the Bush Doctrine. It is longstanding policy. Gibson was wrong.
9.13.2008 3:47pm
Ex parte McCardle:
I enjoy seeing someone say of the Bush Doctrine, as did Richard Aubrey this morning, "Since Bush didn't name it, it isn't official." Ergo, I guess, no one should have anything to say about it, because somehow it doesn't exist.

In that same sense, Sarah Palin (or anyone else for that matter) was neither for nor against the Bridge to Nowhere, since there was never a set of architectural plans or blueprints explicitly labeled "Bridge to Nowhere."
9.13.2008 3:54pm
Moneyrunner43 (www):
The Obama supporters, when they are not rabid, are sometimes amusing. It may be instructive to see how Obama was “grilled” by Charlie Gibson during his recent interview.

Obama interview:

How does it feel to break a glass ceiling?
How does it feel to “win”?
How does your family feel about your “winning” breaking a glass ceiling?
Who will be your VP?
Should you choose Hillary Clinton as VP?
Will you accept public finance?
What issues is your campaign about?
Will you visit Iraq?
Will you debate McCain at a town hall?
What did you think of your competitor’s [Clinton] speech?



Palin interview:
Do you have enough qualifications for the job you’re seeking? Specifically have you visited foreign countries and met foreign leaders?
Aren’t you conceited to be seeking this high level job?
Questions about foreign policy
-territorial integrity of Georgia
-allowing Georgia and Ukraine to be members of NATO
-NATO treaty
-Iranian nuclear threat
-what to do if Israel attacks Iran
-Al Qaeda motivations
-the Bush Doctrine
-attacking terrorists harbored by Pakistan
Is America fighting a holy war? [misquoted Palin]

Now it’s obvious in comparing the questions that Gibson was making sure that Obama could not possibly fluff the questions. He was basically allowing Obama to take a victory lap.

That is why I think the best interview that has been done so far is by a pastor, Rick Warren on the Saddelback forum. Both get the same questions and neither one gets to hear what the other said.

If the MSM were ever to do that you can be sure that the questions are more informative.
9.13.2008 3:57pm
Bryan C (mail):
After hearing the initial descriptions of her "Bush Doctrine" answer I was prepared to see Palin sputtering and drooling all over herself. But after watching the video it's clear to me that she sensed a loaded question and answered it as cautiously as possible.

Obama's main talking point has been the claim that McCain has "voted with Bush" on everything (whatever that means), that he's tainted by any agreement with Bush, and that his presidency would be exactly like another Bush term. It's dishonest and incorrect, but they seem to like trotting it out at every opportunity. Knowing this perfectly well, it would have been very foolish of Palin to blindly affirm agreement with Bush on anything, let alone something so vague and undefined as his "Doctrine". That would inevitably have been the first headline, suitably removed from context and distorted beyond recognition just like they lamely did with her answer about Russia and Georgia.

I think her cautious approach was clearly shown to be correct when Gibson then revealed that freakish "Bush Doctrine" he'd just made up off the top of his head. That question was a blank check for the Obama campaign, and whatever interpretation she went with it would've been the wrong one.
9.13.2008 3:58pm
JK:
While Palin's response may not have been unreasonable for a lay person. If the same question had been asked of Krauthammer himself, or say Henry Kissinger, do you really think he would have given the same cofused searching answer. It was a reasonable question for a policy expert, but an unreasonable question for a lay person. So whether you believe it was reasonable for Gibson to ask Palin will depend on whether you believe that a Vice Presidential candidate shoul be a foreign policy expert.

I mean that as an open question, I'm not sure which way I come down.
9.13.2008 4:01pm
Roger Schlafly (www):
It is okay for Gibson to ask Palin's opinion of Bush's policy, but Palin was certainly correct to ask which policy Gibson was referring to. Nobody could have known that Gibson was referring to some longstanding American policy that had little to do with Bush.
9.13.2008 4:01pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
It is not the Bush Doctrine. It is longstanding policy.


The fact that Bush didn't invent the idea of preemption doesn't mean that there wasn't something called the Bush Doctrine, which embodied the idea of preemption. Here's another reference:

America’s stunningly swift liberation of Iraq was a political triumph for President Bush. It did not, however, fully redeem the administration’s diplomatic failures leading up to the war, nor did it vindicate the Bush Doctrine of preemption. That doctrine asserts a unilateral American right to attack countries we think may threaten us, especially with the unholy trinity of chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons.


Those words were published in Summer 2003. They are part of this document (pdf): "The Bush Doctrine:A Preemptive Path to Peace or a Recipe for Perpetual War?" In 52 pages, that document uses the word 'preempt' (in various forms) 19 times. So the idea of connecting the terms 'Bush Doctrine' and 'preemptive war' is not just something Gibson came up with in 2008.

Krauthammer confirms the same thing: "when the Iraq war was looming, Bush offered his major justification by enunciating a doctrine of preemptive war."

Palin made it clear that this is all stuff she never paid much attention to, and probably doesn't find very interesting. Nevertheless, she doesn't mind speaking about it all very decisively.
9.13.2008 4:16pm
subpatre (mail):
Grover Gardner says: "The United States has long maintained the option of preemptive actions "

Since when has any words spoken by a president become his doctrine? How does "long maintained" equal 'new Bush Doctrine'?

Preemption has been a perogative of all western nations for more than 350 years. The US is one of those many nations, and the statement --including "long maintained"-- is simply acknowlegment of that preexistant fact.

Preemptive force is not the Bush Doctrine, Grover's claim fails on historical grounds. Bush didn't name it, but "the Bush Doctrine" was first articulated by Krauthammer, who rejects Grover's false assertion that the doctrine is preemption.

The Washington Post acknowledges there have been four 'Bush Doctrines' since Krauthammer, and other writers show seven different accepted-by-the-leftists versions. IOW, Grover's version is not only wrong, but quadruply wrong.


Sally - Ouch! 'He's a moron but a devilishly clever and intellectual moron'! The point sailed over their heads.
9.13.2008 4:23pm
ofidiofile:
...oh! my mistake. i was looking for the Volokh Conspiracy, seems i stumbled upon the "no spin zone" instead. ha, ha.
9.13.2008 4:28pm
Frank Smith (mail):
The "Bush Doctrine" as practiced means we can make up and disseminate fake "intelligence" about mythical dangers, and recruit those who are in our debt to join us in "preemptive" imperialism and adventurism. It means that "harboring terrorists" is grounds for attacks on sovereign nations unless of course it is we that are doing the harboring (i.e., Luis Posada Carriles, Dr. Orlando Bosch).
9.13.2008 4:31pm
peter jackson (mail) (www):

And then I and most other reasonably well-informed people would say that Krauthammer, his adversary and the audience also did not understand what the Bush Doctrine was.


The Bush doctrine question was simply Gibson's version of the "who's the foreign minister of Upper Mulgoovia" gotcha question, asked in bad faith.

And of course the "doctrine" he was referring to was one of the lefty re-brand versions; to a person not on the left, what Gibson is referring to is known as "self-defense" and as a concept pre-dates the Bush administration significantly. if Gibson was really interested in an answer to the question instead of only trying to make Palin look foolish on television, he would have asked her if she believed in self-defense.

yours/
peter.
9.13.2008 4:34pm
Frank Smith (mail):
That is why I think the best interview that has been done so far is by a pastor, Rick Warren on the Saddelback forum. Both get the same questions and neither one gets to hear what the other said.


Sorry, but McCain watched the Obama interview on television and was well prepared for any questions. He coyly admitted it, though we thought he was joking, when he said he had his "ear against the wall." Not that it would have mattered that much. Warren is an interviewer with skills found in the narrow band between Charles Gibson and Larry King.

Softball, anyone?
9.13.2008 4:36pm
subpatre (mail):
jukeboxgrad says: "The fact that Bush didn't invent the idea of preemption doesn't mean that there wasn't something called the Bush Doctrine, which embodied the idea of preemption. "

embody
1: to give a body to (a spirit) : incarnate
2a: to deprive of spirituality
. b: to make concrete and perceptible
3: to cause to become a body or part of a body : incorporate
4: to represent in human or animal form

If you are trying to say 'is equal to' the idea of preemption, then that's not a Bush doctrine since preemption --as justification under international law-- predates Bush by many centuries. No matter how you spin it, Bush Doctrine is not equal to preemption.
9.13.2008 4:36pm
sputnik (mail):
"preventive", people...
c'mon, we always had the doctrine of pre-emptive strike...
big difference here.
read the post from 10:14 a.m.
9.13.2008 4:41pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
This stuff isn't hard to find.

Max Boot, Weekly Standard, 2/16/04:

The Bush Doctrine Lives … The Kay findings point to its importance, not its demise. … THE MOST CONTROVERSIAL PART of President Bush's National Security Strategy, unveiled in September 2002, was its mention of preemptive action against "emerging threats before they are fully formed."


William Kristol, Weekly Standard, 8/26/02:

Bush's policy is regime change in Iraq. President Bush believes that regime change is most unlikely without military action. He considers the risks of inaction greater than the risks of preemption. … European international-law wishfulness and full-blown Pat Buchanan isolationism are the two intellectually honest alternatives to the Bush Doctrine. … This secretary of state, because of his popularity at home and his stature abroad, could be particularly helpful if he were to join the president, the vice president, the national security adviser, and the defense secretary in making the case for the Bush Doctrine with respect to Iraq.


Krauthammer, Weekly Standard, 12/9/02:

When President Bush enunciated his radical new doctrine of preemption, the forcible disarmament of rogue possessors of weapons of mass destruction, it was met with a mixture of disdain and consternation by a foreign policy establishment instinctively allergic to new doctrines.


Same rag, 9/30/02:

To cope with a different and new kind of menace, Bush is elaborating a preemption doctrine


Fred Barnes, same rag, 6/26/02:

Last month at West Point, he downgraded deterrence and containment and adopted a new strategic doctrine to combat terrorist: preemption


roger:

Nobody could have known that Gibson was referring to some longstanding American policy that had little to do with Bush.


You and Krauthammer should do a better job of coordinating your talking points. In 2002, he said preemption was a "radical new doctrine."

peter jackson:

what Gibson is referring to is known as "self-defense" and as a concept pre-dates the Bush administration significantly


Please refer to what I just said to roger.

subpatre:

"the Bush Doctrine" was first articulated by Krauthammer, who rejects Grover's false assertion that the doctrine is preemption


That's not what Krauthammer said. Certainly not in 2002, and not even today. Today he said this: "when the Iraq war was looming, Bush offered his major justification by enunciating a doctrine of preemptive war."

No matter how you spin it, Bush Doctrine is not equal to preemption.


Then you should have been speaking up in 2002-2004, when lots of people were saying that the Bush Doctrine is preemption.
9.13.2008 4:48pm
good strategy (mail):

It is okay for Gibson to ask Palin's opinion of Bush's policy, but Palin was certainly correct to ask which policy Gibson was referring to. Nobody could have known that Gibson was referring to some longstanding American policy that had little to do with Bush.


Just for for, I went to the Foreign Affairs website and searched their archives for "bush doctrine." On the first page, I spy:

The Sources of American Legitimacy
by Robert W. Tucker and David C. Hendrickson

"But although certain aspects of the Bush doctrine were presaged by earlier administrations, no preceding administration brought all of these elements together ..."

Other interesting pieces from the first page include:



The Past as Prologue: An Imperial Manual ...
by Thomas Donnelly
The Bush Doctrine is thus an expression of the president's decision to preserve and extend Pax Americana throughout the Middle East and beyond. ...
Review Essay from the July/August 2002 issue

Bye Bye Bush - Adam Garfinkle
by Adam Garfinkle

clipped, however, to adequately describe the evolution of the administration's thinking and behavior, especially the protean policy known as the Bush doctrine. ...
Review Essay from the March/April 2008 issue


America's Crisis of Legitimacy - Robert Kagan
by Robert Kagan
In Europe's view, this danger is best encapsulated in the so-called Bush doctrine and in its commitment to confronting the global "axis of evil." Many ...
Essay from the March/April 2004 issue

Transformational Leadership and US Grand ...
by Joseph S. Nye, Jr.
As Gaddis argues, Bush's emerging doctrine was "Fukuyama plus force" and was designed to make terrorism obsolete by spreading democracy everywhere. ...
Essay from the July/August 2006 issue


The North Atlantic Drift - William Drozdiak
by William Drozdiak
sides, trust has been eroded by bickering over the war in Iraq and Washington's growing penchant for unilateral action, notably the Bush doctrine of preventive ...
Essay from the January/February 2005 issue

The Iraq Syndrome - John Mueller
by John Mueller
Among the casualties of the Iraq syndrome could be the Bush doctrine, unilateralism, preemption, preventive war, and indispensable-nationhood. ...

To summarize:

All the conservative blather about the legitimacy of the question or Gibson's orientation towards it are complete and utter bull.

US foreign policy under George W. Bush might not fit well into IR's doctrine paradigm because it was incoherent, or because it had to evolve in the face of resource constraints and other faulty assumptions of the period after the fall of Kabul.

Palin couldn't have an intelligent conversation about the precepts of Bush's foreign policy because she didn't have a working vocabulary of the subject matter. If you don't believe me because I'm an evil lib, read Rich Lowry or Ross Douthat. And please stop apologizing for the know-nothing party. Know-nothings on global warming. Know-nothings on evolution. Know-nothings about supply side perfection. A federal bureaucracy stacked with incompetence and politicization. ENOUGH!
9.13.2008 4:53pm
Moneyrunner43 (www):

but McCain watched the Obama interview on television

Lie much Frank?

Sorry, that’s a rhetorical question. I note your other posts and the question answers itself.

You must be on someone’s law faculty or law office.
9.13.2008 4:56pm
Moneyrunner43 (www):

ENOUGH!


We get you GS.
You are right on there with those other centrists in the Democrat party Randi Rhodes
9.13.2008 4:59pm
Roger Schlafly (www):
It is interesting to see various references to the "Bush Doctrine" by various different people to mean various different things. Perhaps there were even some neocons who used to the term to mean preemptive war. But they also used to the term to mean other things, and there was no general agreement about what the term meant.

The Iraq War was no more a preemptive war than previous wars in Panama, Serbia, Kosovo, and elsewhere. Associating preemption to Bush is inaccurate.
9.13.2008 5:12pm
Moneyrunner43 (www):
Quote of the day:


I think they spent months trying to figure out how they can position Obama as better qualified than McCain, and basically came up with the fact that Obama can type.
9.13.2008 5:12pm
CB55 (mail):
The Washington Post article to which Alder is an excercise in regrugitating GOP talking points, with no intervening analytical appraisal of said talking points.

For instance, take the sub-headline of the story: "Palin's Confusion in Interview Understandable, Experts Say."

But nowhere in the article does any expert explicitly say say this.

Now take the headline itself: "Many Versions of 'Bush Doctrine.'"

There are four supposed experts quoted in the article who take this position--that the Bush Doctrine has many versions, and is not easy to define--and all four of them are GOP partisans: Peter D. Feaver, who was a staff member on Bush's National Security Council, Andrew C. McCarthy, writes for National Review Online, Philip D. Zelikow, was a Bush State Department counselor, and Bush press secretary Dana Perino.

The only non-GOP partisan who comes close to taking this position in the WaPo article is Zbigniew Brzezinski, who does NOT say that there are several VERSIONS of the Bush Doctrine, but that there are "many elements to the Bush doctrine," INCLUDING the "endorsement of preventive war." Brzezinski, however, is not asked what he thinks is the most central, or defining, element of the doctrine.

The only other expert quoted, Richard Holbrooke, does indeed suggest that the central, or defining, or core element of the Bush Doctrine is the doctrine of preemptive war. Holbrooke points to the 2002 National Security Strategy of the White House as the critical statement of the Bush Doctrine, and that NSS states: "The greater the threat, the greater is the risk of inaction--and the more compelling the case for taking ANTICIPATORY action to defend ourselves, even if uncertainty remains as to the time and place of the enemy's attack. To forestall or prevent such hostile acts by our adversaries, the United States will, if necessary, act PREEMPTIVELY." [emphasis added]

All of which is to say, the Washington Post, in the article cited, is apparently drinking the McCain-Palin koolaid, and spinning the story exactly the way the GOP wants it to be spun: that there are many versions of the Bush Doctrine.

And yet, the article itself does not support this assertion, or supports it only with quotes from GOP partisans.

In other words, the fact that Sarah Palin did not know the central, defining, core element of the Bush Doctrine is indeed beyond debate.
9.13.2008 5:16pm
one of many:
Jukebox and GS, please be so kind as to actually read those citations of the "Bush Doctrine" you spew and compare them to Gibson's version (and each other). You also wish to actually think a bit about the arguments are being made by those you are belittling so that you do not simply spew further evidence to support those arguments, in this case the argumetn is no that no one has ever used the term "Bush Doctrine" but that there are so many different usages of the term that Palin was justified in asking for clarification, thus we can see a variety of uses of the term in (your 3:48 and 3:53 posts).
9.13.2008 5:18pm
CB55 (mail):
A quick follow-up to Aldre's thought on that Post piece: There may be "Many versions of 'Bush Doctrine,'" as the piece's headline notes. But the sub-head, "Palin's Confusion in Interview Understandable, Experts Say," is pretty far off the mark. Palin's confusion would be understandable if she'd offered a response she thought reflected the Bush Doctrine, but which was different from the version Charlie Gibson or many viewers had in mind. But Palin ventured no response at all. She was completely unfamiliar with the term, which is not understandable because, regardless of interpretation, the term has circulated widely.

Maybe Palin couldn't even take a stab at an answer because she's so attuned to various Bush Doctrine nuances she didn't know where to begin.
9.13.2008 5:19pm
fullerene:
I have been as critical here of Palin as anyone here. But I have trouble criticizing her for not knowing that there was a clearly defined Bush Doctrine. The President has articulated a large number of things that different journalists have nicknamed "the Bush Doctrine." This tendency to name almost any foreign policy idea "the [insert name here] Doctrine" has become cloyingly common. It is not unlike appending '-gate' to any scandal.

Having said this, I don't think Gibson intended this to be a gotcha question. He was probably aware that the term was used any number of different ways. Given this, he might have figured that anyone answering the question could take it to mean any one of those many different possibilities. In essence, Gibson thought the flexibility of the term gave Palin a chance to critique any aspect of Bush's foreign policy that she wanted to. Wouldn't it have been great if she had simply taken any of the above possibilities and said what she thought? We know that did not happen, but it very well could have happened.

To me, the most sensible critique of Palin here is that she didn't know that there was no one Bush Doctrine. I am speculating, but it looked as though she was afraid that she would get it wrong, so she didn't dare answer right away. You won't, however, hear me arguing this, because all of my compatriots have already argued that there is clearly a singular Bush Doctrine. If we try to have it both ways, Palin-defenders will howl with glee at our constantly shifting and inconsistent attacks.
9.13.2008 5:22pm
CB55 (mail):
OK, let's blame a lip stick wearing pig, Liberal media, sexism, Obama smear tactics, clueless Charles Gibson and poor lighting for McCain taking to "The View" and the dog and pony show of Palin on "20/20"
9.13.2008 5:24pm
TCO:
Th Bush Doctrine thing was silly (ask about the concept not games on what words mean) as was the "exact words" thing on the Palin quote (where Gibson was wrong). These anchorpeople are really broadcast News fluffheads and like to act very certain but are really note even as sharp as the average libertarian law blogger...or even Sunday Morning opinionater.

I have to hold myself back from going off too much on the press since Palin has a journalism degree and sportscasted.
9.13.2008 5:28pm
CB55 (mail):
I think I'm qualified to run a Fortune 500 company because I share the same zip code of a Fortune 500 CEO.
9.13.2008 5:28pm
CB55 (mail):
TCO:

If one is going to change anything one needs to know from what to what as to change.
9.13.2008 5:32pm
Neo (mail):
You've really got to go look at the unedited transcript of the Gibson/Palin interview.

ABC is trash. This is shameful.
9.13.2008 5:34pm
A. Zarkov (mail):
Time out. Let's see what's happening in the real world.

FiveThirtyEight
: is giving the electrol vote to McCain, while

PollyVote: is giving the popular vote to BHO.

They use different methodologies. Pollyvote is a forecasting outfit and uses combined information from polls, expert opinion, and the Iowa electronic markets. Pollyvote has an excellent track record.

It's worthwhile for you while to read through both sites to get a more professional level predictions on how the campaign is going as opposed to the junk you get from the MSM. One thing we can say for sure, it's going to be close. Since they brought Sarah on board the Republicans have stopped being boring.
9.13.2008 5:34pm
CB55 (mail):
Neo:

Like any good newsman, ABC News believes that if you're not pissed off, Gibson is not doing his job.
9.13.2008 5:41pm
Grover Gardner (mail):

It is interesting to see various references to the "Bush Doctrine" by various different people to mean various different things. Perhaps there were even some neocons who used to the term to mean preemptive war. But they also used to the term to mean other things, and there was no general agreement about what the term meant.


Perhaps? No, there were neo-cons who framed it that way. You've just been handed the proof. But at least you backed of from this:


I challenge you to show me anyone saying in 2002 that the Bush Doctrine is the doctrine of preemption.


or this:


It is not the Bush Doctrine. It is longstanding policy. Gibson was wrong.


What was different (and to some, disturbing) about the Bush administration's iteration of the policy of preemptive war was that it could be justified even if there were no imminent or provable threat.

And wfjag, here is what Kerry said about preemptive war, the part you left out and the part that shows why the question was asked in the debate:


But if and when you do it, Jim, you have to do it in a way that passes the test, that passes the global test where your countrymen, your people understand fully why you're doing what you're doing and you can prove to the world that you did it for legitimate reasons.

Here we have our own secretary of state who has had to apologize to the world for the presentation he made to the United Nations.

I mean, we can remember when President Kennedy in the Cuban missile crisis sent his secretary of state to Paris to meet with DeGaulle.

And in the middle of the discussion, to tell them about the missiles in Cuba, he said, "Here, let me show you the photos."

And DeGaulle waved them off and said, "No, no, no, no. The word of the president of the United States is good enough for me."

How many leaders in the world today would respond to us, as a result of what we've done, in that way?

So what is at test here is the credibility of the United States of America and how we lead the world.
9.13.2008 5:45pm
CB55 (mail):
Right now all of those Working Class women have something else to talk about besides the bad economy until Sarah is no longer entertaining then it's toilet bowls and casseroles until Xmas.
9.13.2008 5:47pm
Moneyrunner43 (www):
The Obama cadres on Volokh may want to visit here to load up on vitriol if their usual supply dwindles.


I assume John McCain chose Sarah Palin as his vice-presidential partner in a fit of pique because the Republican money men refused to let him have the stuffed male shirt he really wanted. She added nothing to the ticket that the Republicans didn't already have sewn up, the white trash vote, the demographic that sullies America's name inside and outside its borders yet has such a curious appeal for the right.

So why do it?

It's possible that Republican men, sexual inadequates that they are, really believe that women will vote for a woman just because she's a woman. They're unfamiliar with our true natures. Do they think vaginas call out to each other in the jungle night? I mean, I know men have their secret meetings at which they pledge to do manly things, like being irresponsible with their semen and postponing household repairs with glue and used matches. Guys will be guys, obviously.


There's much more HERE, and although she's a Canadian, she would be totally in the mainstream of Democrat culture.

I suggest you repeat a lot more of this in the days and weeks ahead. It will change minds ... I'm totally convinced.
9.13.2008 5:50pm
Radovan Karadzic (mail):
Putin Palin's answer reminded me of the time that Dubya was asked about tribal sovereignty. Rather than admit he didn't have a clue, he tried to BS his way:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W28CQQsH9S8

Honestly, Dubya and Palin are like two peas in a pod. Only her pea is even further to the right than Dubya's.
9.13.2008 5:50pm
VincentPaul (mail):
Check out the unedited interview: http://marklevinshow.com/gibson-interview/ Different... isn't it?
9.13.2008 5:51pm
Grover Gardner (mail):
As CB55 has pointed out, it was the use of the word "anticipatory" in the 2002 National Security statement that set off alarms bells. That is why you had articles like this appearing (not an endorsement, just an example) and why the question was raised in the 2004 debates.

Anticipatory war is also part of an older debate (google it), but one that became part of the general discussion in America in 2002 due to the Bush administrations articulation and promotion of the idea.
9.13.2008 5:59pm
metro1 (mail) (www):
This discussion of the Bush Doctrine made me curious about a GW Bush Administration veteran who would likely play a significant role in a McCain-Palin Administration:

Stephen E. Biegun, according to this Washington Post article by Michael Abramowitz, is the "White House staff member who helped draft the 2002 document (related to the then 'Bush Doctrine')..." Mr. Biegun "now serves as Palin's foreign policy adviser."

From his biography at Ford Motors:

* * *

Mr. Biegun served as national security advisor to Senate Majority Leader, Senator Bill Frist, M.D. In this capacity, he provided analysis and strategic planning for the Senate's consideration of foreign policy, defense and intelligence matters, and international trade agreements.

Before joining the staff of the Majority Leader, Mr. Biegun worked in the White House from 2001-2003 as Executive Secretary of the National Security Council. He served as a senior staff member to the National Security Advisor, Condoleezza Rice, and performed the function of chief operating officer for the National Security Council.

Prior to joining the White House staff, Mr. Biegun served for 14 years as a foreign policy advisor to members of both the House of Representatives and the United States Senate. During this time, he also held the position of Chief of Staff of the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations from 1999-2000 and was the Committee's senior professional staff member for European affairs from 1994-1998. In addition, Mr. Biegun served as a staff member of the United States House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs for six years. In this role, he was responsible for the foreign assistance budget, trade policy, and European affairs.

From 1992 to 1994, Mr. Biegun served as the Resident Director in the Russian Federation for the International Republican Institute, a democracy-building organization established under the National Endowment for Democracy.

Mr. Biegun graduated from the University of Michigan where he studied Political Science and Russian Language. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Aspen Strategy Group, and is a member of the boards of the US-Russia Investment Fund, the Moscow School of Political Studies, the Council of the Americas, the National Bureau of Asian Research, and the Automotive Trade Policy Council. Mr. Biegun serves on the Executive Committee of the Washington International Business Council and the US-ASEAN Business Council and serves as Chairman of the National Association of Manufacturers WTO Action Group.

* * *

Impressive guy. Possible National Security Advisor in a McCain-Palin Administration?
9.13.2008 6:04pm
PC:
Impressive guy. Possible National Security Advisor in a McCain-Palin Administration?


I bet he would be terribly confused if you asked him what the Bush Doctrine is.
9.13.2008 6:23pm
TA:
From the interview:

GIBSON: No, the Bush doctrine, enunciated September 2002, before the Iraq war.

Bush has stated several doctrines (roughly):

1) Encouraging democracy in the Middle East to fight terrorism;

2) No difference between terrorists and states which support terrorists;

3) Preemptive strikes against likely threats are acceptable;

and more. If I understand correctly, the fact that Sarah Palin did not know specifically which one was stated in September of 2002 renders here unqualified to be VP. The Republican party benefits greatly from being held to much higher standards, I think.
9.13.2008 6:24pm
metro1 (mail) (www):
PC:

Actually - I think he (Biegun) would be one of the few people who could give a thorough, encyclopedic answer - discussing all the different concepts that have, at various times, been called "The Bush Doctrine."

The point, of course, is there are several different concepts that have been labeled "The Bush Doctrine" over time.

Charlie Gibson's question of Palin incorrectly labeled the "preemptive war" doctrine as the sole "Bush Doctrine."

Palin's initial answer to Gibson, actually, was a fairer discussion of the various "Bush Doctrine[s]" taken as a whole, i.e.: the various Bush doctrines center around defeating terrorism and promoting liberty. This is essentially what Palin said.

For a sense of a "combined" Bush Doctrine see how White House press secretary Dana Perino described it:

* * *

In an interview, Bush press secretary Dana Perino said that "the Bush doctrine is commonly used to describe key elements of the president's overall strategy for dealing with threats from terrorists." She laid out three elements:

"The United States makes no distinction between those who commit acts of terror and those who support and harbor terrorists. . . . We will confront grave threats before they fully materialize and will fight the terrorists abroad so we don't have to face them at home. . . . We will counter the hateful ideology of the terrorist by promoting the hopeful alternative of human freedom."

Bush, she added, "is comfortable with the way I just described it."

* * *

That's closer to Palin's answer than Gibson's question.
9.13.2008 6:33pm
Johnny Canuck (mail):
Batter up

GIBSON: Do you agree with the Bush doctrine?
PALIN: In what respect, Charlie?

If she had an idea what the Bush doctrine was, she would have answered; if she was aware there were several alternatives she would either list them or ask which one. But the ball wasn't clearly over the plate

GIBSON: The Bush -- well, what do you -- what do you interpret it to be?
PALIN: His world view.

vague response, but possible. Ball two

GIBSON: No, the Bush doctrine, enunciated September 2002, before the Iraq war.
PALIN: I believe that what President Bush has attempted to do is rid this world of Islamic extremism, terrorists who are hell bent on destroying our nation. There have been blunders along the way, though. There have been mistakes made. And with new leadership, and that's the beauty of American elections, of course, and democracy, is with new leadership comes opportunity to do things better.


vague response that is not responsive to what Gibson wanted, but if you think "world view" is what Bush doctrine means, maybe. Ball three

GIBSON: The Bush doctrine, as I understand it, is that we have the right of anticipatory self-defense, that we have the right to a preemptive strike against any other country that we think is going to attack us. Do you agree with that?
PALIN: I agree that a president's job, when they swear in their oath to uphold our Constitution, their top priority is to defend the United States of America.
I know that John McCain will do that and I, as his vice president, families we are blessed with that vote of the American people and are elected to serve and are sworn in on January 20, that will be our top priority is to defend the American people.


Finally Gibson has the ball over the plate, question is specific answer is pretty non-responsive. Leads to conclusion that she really wasn't knowledgable about the concepts of premptive war, or preventive war. called strike


GIBSON: Do we have a right to anticipatory self-defense? Do we have a right to make a preemptive strike again another country if we feel that country might strike us?
PALIN: Charlie, if there is legitimate and enough intelligence that tells us that a strike is imminent against American people, we have every right to defend our country. In fact, the president has the obligation, the duty to defend.


Another chance, she opts for the (more sensible in my view) pre Bush Doctrine opinion. Again no awareness of the change from preemptive -- like when Israel knew Egypt was going to attack, they didn't have to wait for the first blow-- to the Bush concept - if US thinks any country may at any time in the future develop the weapons and delivery systems to strike us then we can start a war now.
Obviously she hasn't been briefed; otherwise she would have adopted McCain's policy on this issue. She's out (you don't get three strikes in this game)
9.13.2008 6:55pm
Grover Gardner (mail):

Check out the unedited interview: http://marklevinshow.com/gibson-interview/ Different... isn't it?


Not really, no. And I'm someone who doesn't think she did that badly. But then, I question the need for the whole exercise altogether.


That's closer to Palin's answer than Gibson's question.


But Palin's answer was miles away from Gibson's question, however you frame it. She didn't address his question about preemptive/preventive/anticipatory war as defined by the Bush Doctrine.
9.13.2008 6:59pm
Kazinski:
Well I think this should pretty much end this debate, this is from The Corner:

But ask yourself: How would a real foreign policy sophisticate have replied to Gibson’s question?

Well, Anne-Marie Slaughter is the dean of the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton. She was interviewed by Alan Johnson, for a book titled: "Global Politics After 9/11: The Democratiya Interviews."



Here's how the exchange begins:



Johnson: What are the central differences, and what are the elements of continuity, if any exist, between 'the Bush doctrine' and the 'grand strategy of forging a world of liberty under law'?



Slaughter: Tell me what you mean by 'The Bush Doctrine'.


To a foreign policy sophisticate, the "Bush Doctrine" is just too mushy a concept to comment on. I'm not calling Palin a foreign policy sophisticate, but evidently she is enough of a political sophisticate to know when she is walking into a swamp.
9.13.2008 7:03pm
Ex parte McCardle:
There is no single, universally-agreed-upon employment of the term "God." Therefore, we should all be able to agree that no such thing exists, and any question asked about it is simple a "gotcha" referring to nothing at all.
9.13.2008 7:24pm
Roger Schlafly (www):
If Gibson wanted to ask Palin if she agreed with Bush's justifications for his Iraq policy of 2002, then he should have asked that. Instead he asked a vague and contradictory question that merely invited Palin to make a statement about foreign policy.

Someone else in Palin's position might have taken the opportunity to lecture Gibson on his erroneous version of the Bush Doctrine. Instead Palin simply asked Gibson to clarify the question, listened to him babble some nonsense, and then gave a straightforward answer.
9.13.2008 7:26pm
nicestrategy (mail):

in this case the argumetn is no that no one has ever used the term "Bush Doctrine" but that there are so many different usages of the term that Palin was justified in asking for clarification,


Yes, she was justified in asking for a clarification, seeing as scholars have referred to it as "protean" and "so-called" (sticking to the above cited blurbs), but the way she did it made it clear she had never heard of the term in any of its usages. Doctrines aren't worldviews, they are statements about the precepts under which policy will be formulated, and anyone with a year of college US history (or the equivalent amount of knowledge acquired in another way) should know that because of the Monroe doctrine and the Truman doctrine if not the debate over the "Bush Doctrine" from the 2002 NSS forward. This is basic stuff.

Daniel Larison from the American Conservative can put it better than I. I challenge any of the Palin defenders on this site to rebut his analysis. Also check out his takedown of the "they edited her to look bad!" nonsense.

Anyhow, once Gibson clarified his question, she offered a completely vapid answer that showed no awareness of the issue. I liked her instinct to head toward an imminent threat standard, even though that contradicts McCain. I have no confidence that she has spent more than a cursory amount of time thinking about foreign policy or international relations from that exchange, that interview in general, or anything else put forth by the GOP. Did you know you can *see* Russia from Alaska??

Palin's curiosity about public policy outside of Alaska is simply breathtaking.
9.13.2008 7:29pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
The GOP penchant for brazen revisionism is spectacular.

The essence of the Bush Doctrine is preemption. Don't believe me; just read NRO. They said that, explicitly.

Lowry, NRO, 6/4/02:

A Fighting Doctrine … Important new steps in the Bush doctrine. … If wars were fought with doctrines rather than guns, the Bush administration would have wrapped up the war on terrorism by now. At West Point on Saturday, Bush again achieved doctrinal excellence with a speech that pushed his thinking forward a few important steps — making the case for preemptive U.S. action against rogues and taking some not-very-subtle shots at the Saudis. … you can't have a war on WMD unless you have a robust operational doctrine of preemption


Jonah Goldberg, NRO, 7/12/04:

Edwards and The Bush Doctrine… According to Time magazine's glowing profile , John Edwards' father was a true believer in the policy of preemption: Growing up chiefly in Robbins, N.C., Edwards played hoops in his backyard and contended with neighborhood bullies by following his dad's advice: Don't wait for trouble; punch the other guy hard in the nose first.


Newt Gingrich, NRO, 6/21/06:

Bush’s pledge in his 2002 State of the Union “Axis of Evil” speech that “the United States of America will not permit the world’s most dangerous regimes to threaten us with the world’s most destructive weapons” led him and his administration to insist over and over that their doctrine was preemption.

Now we are faced with a direct threat of a missile launch. Will the State Department adhere to the Bush doctrine or will it go back to a defensive strategy?


Derrick Max, NRO, 11/9/04:

The final months of the 2004 presidential election were fought on the wisdom and implementation of George W. Bush's doctrine of preemption — which boiled down to "getting the enemy before they get us."


Kaplan and Kristol, NRO, 2/24/03:

As to what the Bush team might have omitted from its indictment, one could argue that it needn't have emphasized the doctrine of preemption — at least in Iraq's case — as much as it did.


Kate O'Beirne, NRO, 2/20/04:

Looks like the Bush Doctrine of Preemption is called for.


Kudlow, NRO, 1/20/05:

The Bush doctrine of preemption remains in place.


NRO, 3/28/03:

Consistent with the mandate for preemption found in the Bush Doctrine


Kudlow, NRO, 10/26/04:

Kerry has never understood the Bush doctrine of preemption, which says plainly that if we wait to attack it will be too late.


NRO, 9/18/03:

Acting before a threat becomes imminent is the essence of the Bush Doctrine. That's why it's called preemption.


NRO, 6/6/08:

one could be forgiven for thinking he was trying to refurbish the Bush doctrine of preemption after the battering it’s taken from Democrats the last few years.


NRO, 12/5/05:

Then he goes after Bush for the doctrine of preemption
9.13.2008 7:30pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
schafly:

It is interesting to see various references to the "Bush Doctrine" by various different people to mean various different things. Perhaps there were even some neocons who used to the term to mean preemptive war.


It is interesting to see your screamingly disingenuous backpedaling. This is what you said earlier:

I challenge you to show me anyone saying in 2002 that the Bush Doctrine is the doctrine of preemption.


Now that I've shown you "neocons who used to the term to mean preemptive war," in 2002, you lack the intellectual integrity to admit that you were wrong. And your 'perhaps' also sends a strong message about your integrity.

And yes, later the term was used by "various different people to mean various different things," because Bush decided to roll out a series of new explanations of what the war was about.

This doesn't change the core fact: Palin made it clear that she never heard the term before.

The Iraq War was no more a preemptive war than previous wars in Panama, Serbia, Kosovo, and elsewhere. Associating preemption to Bush is inaccurate.


Please keep your head buried in the sand and ignore the quotes that have been presented clearly "associating preemption to Bush."

Someone else in Palin's position might have taken the opportunity to lecture Gibson on his erroneous version of the Bush Doctrine


What a darn shame that I've posted a long series of quotes indicating that Gibson reads NRO and Weekly Standard, and you and Palin don't.
9.13.2008 7:30pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
one:

there are so many different usages of the term that Palin was justified in asking for clarification


But she didn't say 'I've heard many uses of the term, so please clarify which use you're thinking of.' Her answer made it clear that she had simply never heard the term before.

If the issue was really "different usages," she could have picked the usage that seems logical to her, and used that as the basis for her answer, and explained why she was selecting that usage. Instead, she asked an evasive question that seemed designed to hide the fact that she was familiar with these many of those "different usages:" zero.
9.13.2008 7:30pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
the fact that Sarah Palin did not know specifically which one was stated in September of 2002


NRO mentioned "the Bush doctrine of preemption" on 6/6/08. I guess Palin's copy of that issue got eaten by a moose.
9.13.2008 7:31pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
Slaughter: Tell me what you mean by 'The Bush Doctrine'.


An 11,000 word discussion between scholars is a very different setting, as compared with a TV interview. And the question Gibson asked is quite different from the question Johnson asked. And Palin's response is quite different from Slaughter's response. Other than that, it's a perfect analogy.
9.13.2008 7:31pm
Johnny Canuck (mail):
Roger Schlafly:

Instead Palin simply asked Gibson to clarify the question, listened to him babble some nonsense, and then gave a straightforward answer.


That's the problem she didn't. It took Gibson 4 tries to get to the question, but then she proved she hadn't been briefed or had forgotten the answer.
9.13.2008 7:32pm
Moneyrunner43 (www):
Ex parte McCardle,

Have you ever heard the expression “frequently wrong but never in doubt?”

But you make a point about God. And Gibson did try with a “gotcha” question on that subject.

Interesting isn’t it?
9.13.2008 7:34pm
Moneyrunner43 (www):
I wonder what the purpose of a press interview is. Many (most?) here seem to think it’s not difference than a pop quiz.

I wonder why that is?
9.13.2008 7:38pm
Kazinski:
Jukeboxgrad,
As I said I am not comparing Palin's foreign policy experience to Slaughter's, but it is telling they had pretty much the same reaction to a very similar question. Did Slaughter go on to give a very detailed answer, far beyond what would be expected of either Palin or Obama, after she received some clarification? You betcha.
9.13.2008 7:42pm
nicestrategy (mail):
jukebox:

nicely done, but why they and Gibson call preemption is stretching what preemption had previously been taken to mean. Bush laid out a doctrine of preventative war in 2002. Calling it preemption is a concession to their doublespeak, but one we are all apparently stuck with.

Or maybe it is triplespeak, seeing as now "preemption" is taken as a wrong answer simply because Bush made his own doctrine an incoherent mess in attempting to justify the Iraq war after no WMD were found.
9.13.2008 7:44pm
EIDE_Interface (mail):
Palin isn't a foreign policy guru - she doesn't have to be. She'll learn on the job. She brings experience with energy issues which is far more important right now. She'll push McCain to push for opening up ANWR - which is all I care about. The Drillinator!
9.13.2008 8:00pm
EIDE_Interface (mail):
Actually what Bush did wasn't prevention or preemption. That would give the impression that Saddam could/would launch a war against the US. No, what the Iraq War was always about was setting an example to the rest of the Arab/Muslim world what will happen to them if they play nice-nice with terrorists. Basically the Bush Doctrine is like this - "We will go after all terrorists and their state sponsors". It has NOTHING to do with prevention/preemption. I dare any liberal to challenge me on that!
9.13.2008 8:03pm
Moneyrunner43 (www):

I wonder what the purpose of a press interview is. Many (most?) here seem to think it’s not difference than a pop quiz.

I wonder why that is?



I call bullshit on virtually all of this discussion. You are all acting as if Sarah Palin was a student in Charlie Gibson’s class and was looking for a passing grade by regurgitating what the answers were in class notes.

What a juvenile view of the vetting process.

Let me tell you what the purpose of a campaign is and what the purposes of press interview are. It is to learn what the candidate believes. Based on that we decide whether to vote for or against him or her.

If Charlie Gibson designed his question to determine if Sarah Palin knew what the “Bush Doctrine” was circa 2002, that was stupid question and if I had been Sarah Palin I would have told him so. The answer to that question is totally immaterial to the issue before us unless Sarah Palin is applying for a teaching position at some college.

We are electing the President and Vice President of the United States and I care about what their positions are. I am no fan of Obama but I would think no less of him if he had reacted exactly as Palin did in this interview.

What would have been more revealing were open ended questions about her view of America in the world. She was not asked those. Neither was Obama in Gibson’s earlier interview and unfortunately, he got no questions remotely like those that Palin got which would have allowed him to expand on this issue. Too bad.

Here’s Sarah Palin on relations with Russia..


We cannot repeat the Cold War. We are thankful that, under Reagan, we won the Cold War, without a shot fired, also. We’ve learned lessons from that in our relationship with Russia, previously the Soviet Union.
We will not repeat a Cold War. We must have good relationship with our allies, pressuring, also, helping us to remind Russia that it’s in their benefit, also, a mutually beneficial relationship for us all to be getting along.


I would have liked to hear more about relations with Europe and China, but that was not the direction Gibson was taking this interview. He was more interested in those “gotcha” questions about the Bush Doctrine and her religion a subject on which he either inadvertently or deliberately misquoted her.

So for all you student out there, you don’t get into office by getting an A on a snap quiz. You get into office by convincing more people to vote for you than your opponent. And it doesn’t hurt if people vote for you because they despise the jerks who are rooting for your opponent.
9.13.2008 8:13pm
Mike G in Corvallis (mail):
And then I and most other reasonably well-informed people would say that Krauthammer, his adversary and the audience also did not understand what the Bush Doctrine was.

Ho-kay ...

Or as Al Capp had Li'l Abner say many years ago, "As any fool can plainly see, I can plainly see ..."

Back in school the professors would always sic onto the astrophysics grad students the mildly deranged people who wandered into the department office with new theories of the universe. Almost invariably these people spoke of exposing "the impostor, Einstein." Sometimes dealing with them was kind of fun, but it got old after a while.
9.13.2008 8:16pm
Johnny Canuck (mail):
EIDE_Interface (mail):

Actually what Bush did wasn't prevention or preemption. That would give the impression that Saddam could/would launch a war against the US. No, what the Iraq War was always about was setting an example to the rest of the Arab/Muslim world what will happen to them if they play nice-nice with terrorists. Basically the Bush Doctrine is like this - "We will go after all terrorists and their state sponsors". It has NOTHING to do with prevention/preemption. I dare any liberal to challenge me on that!


Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11.(Did provide funding for Palestinian terrorists). US made the pitch to UN that Iraq had WMD. These constituted a potential threat to US and its allies sometime in the future, that would not be tolerated;
therefore preventative war to deprive Iraq of its WMD.
9.13.2008 8:21pm
SenatorX (mail):
It's not just a matter of did she know the "Bush Doctrine" but their main strategy is to turn away from the McSame meme and into a "Maverick and Washington outsider go to clean up the capital". So questions regarding what she thinks of Bush anything would ones she was on guard for. It's not an easy line they are trying to walk between being Republicans and distancing themselves from Bush's 8 years. She has to commit to McCain's themes, the parties themes, but make sure not to be aligned to Bush's specific themes.

Anyway the discussion on if she knows the various doctrines at all still puts her at a distance from Bush so even in that "failure" she has a success.
9.13.2008 8:24pm
Smokey:
The official Democratic response: clicky
9.13.2008 8:36pm
metro1 (mail) (www):
I think Kazinski's post at 6:03 pretty much ended the discussion here - in favor of Palin. (And jukeboxgrad's multiple posts therafter bespeak of desperation - and annoying posting habits - rather than substance).

So, to lighten the mood a little - since we're just talking at each other now (even more so than usual), I would respectfully suggest that VP candidate Palin change her campaign music from...

Barracuda

(although I think she has the perfect legal right to use that song so long as she paid for the license from Sony Music - regardless of what the Wilson sisters say) ... to...

America, F*** Yeah!

or, even better...

North to Alaska

But this would be best:

The Ballad of Sarah Palin...

* * *

THE BALLAD OF SARAH PALIN
(Sung to the tune of Davy Crockett)

Born in the northern part of Idaho,
Destined for fame, she just didn’t know.
Learned to hunt and fish, even in the snow,
Never was one to just go with the flow

Sarah, Sarah Palin,
lady from “The Last Frontier.”

Moved to the North before she was one,
Landed in the “Land of the Midnight Sun.”
Beautiful and strong, she likes to have fun,
She always works hard, but her work is never done.

Sarah, Sarah Palin,
lady from “The Last Frontier.”

With her five kids and a man named Todd,
They carved out a life eatin’ moose and cod.
Alaska had some waste and a lot of fraud,
So she went to work and laid down her fishin’ rod.

Sarah, Sarah Palin,
lady from “The Last Frontier.”

* * *

We just need to add another verse - something about "The Palin Doctrine" perhaps.
9.13.2008 8:47pm
David Warner:
Fullerene:

"To me, the most sensible critique of Palin here is that she didn't know that there was no one Bush Doctrine. I am speculating, but it looked as though she was afraid that she would get it wrong, so she didn't dare answer right away. You won't, however, hear me arguing this, because all of my compatriots have already argued that there is clearly a singular Bush Doctrine. If we try to have it both ways, Palin-defenders will howl with glee at our constantly shifting and inconsistent attacks."

I think your take is plausible. Any take derived from the premise that Palin is an idiot just illustrates the laziness of the one advancing that view.

On the other hand, the case can be made that she has not previously engaged these issues on a doctrinal level. I would think this would lead one to examine how she has handled those issues which she has previously engaged rather than to pronounce her unfit for office, given that she wouldn't be sworn in tomorrow whatever her fitness.

What is being widely interpreted in some circles as unfitness in her hesitation to answer Gibson could be more plausibly be explained by the political trickiness involved in trying to communicate that she would be different from Bush without alienating his supporters.

This is not the last time such a trap will be sprung, so she would do well to prepare better for the next, although the answer she did produce (an imminent threat test) achieved exactly what was necessary. I'm not convinced that it serves the Dems well to attribute this to dumb luck.
9.13.2008 9:00pm
Moneyrunner43 (www):
Smokey: It's not oten you get s smackdown of Obama ...

in German ...

with subtitles.
9.13.2008 9:01pm
CB55 (mail):
One of the reasons the American voter elected the current president is because they would like to have a beer with him, and they think he is one of them because of his straight talk and winning smile. Surely they like McCain and Palin for similar reasons. A high Emotional IQ beats the pants off any one that's an egg head any day of the week. I'll have my moose burger with an order of fries, please.

People often hire, date, marry and vote for those they believe Mirror what they believe and hope. The Mirror Effect often has noting to do with external fact or internal reality of the Object of their belief.


What's not not like about youth and beauty? Palin does not have a weighty killer paper trail that kills many careers. She is White almost Working Class, God fearing Protestant cookies and milk wholesome. She can make a camp fire, birth a baby, skin a bear and shoot straight. Most of those that like Palin just wanna Believe that she is not like those retreads in Washington DC. These voters believe that Palin will learn thing on the job as she goes along and if not that's why she has advisers.

Does Palin sounds like what we have and had in Bush II, well yeah, but Palin is from Alaska and Alaska is not in the beltway...it's frontier and the land of a new start and HOPE if you Believe.
9.13.2008 9:22pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
kaz:

it is telling they had pretty much the same reaction to a very similar question


Except that I don't think they had the same reaction, and I don't think the question was very similar. And even if you claim it was the same response, it was clearly for very different reasons (unless you want to claim that Palin is as knowledgeable as Slaughter). Slaughter's response was an indication that she has a deep understanding of the Bush Doctrine, i.e., enough understanding to realize that it originally meant one thing, and then other meanings have been piled on top of that original meaning, as Bush kept changing his retroactive rationale for the war.

Palin's response was an indication that she had no understanding at all. That is, no familiarity with the original meaning of the term, or with any meaning of the term. That was clear in her initial reaction, and it became even more clear as Gibson gave her additional chances to bail herself out. Her answer was pure boilerplate from a flash card, and it showed that she had no awareness of any meaning of the term "Bush Doctrine." Let alone the essential meaning. Even after Gibson reminded her of the essential meaning.
9.13.2008 9:28pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
nicestrategy, I agree with your point about doublespeak and triplespeak. Well said.
9.13.2008 9:28pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
eide:

Basically the Bush Doctrine is like this - "We will go after all terrorists and their state sponsors". It has NOTHING to do with prevention/preemption. I dare any liberal to challenge me on that!


Pay no attention to the numerous non-liberals I cited who spoke of Bush's Doctrine of preemption.
9.13.2008 9:29pm
Smokey:
Some common sense, worth repeating:

guess'd:
She was asked an ambiguous question for the record, in an adversarial environment. She asked the questioner to clarify the question by defining his terms. What attorney here would advise a client to do otherwise?

The critics seem to be projecting attributes onto Palin ("I can tell she's dumb, I can just tell") or engaging in bare sarcasm.

It seems to me that her reply was well within the range of responses that a reasonable person would make. If her performance could be improved by Monday morning quarterbacks, in retrospect and at their leisure, isn't that true of us all?
9.13.2008 9:33pm
Cold Warrior:
I know I'm jumping in a bit late here, but here's my two cents.

I work in what might be called our national/homeland security complex. As part of my job, I train new hires. I like to start off with some general materials exploring theoretical perspectives on global security issues.

For the past 5 years or so, one of the initial readings is a transcript of Cheney's speech announcing "The Bush Doctrine."

So I'd say that anyone who works with national security issues really ought to know what the term is a shorthand for.

Am I shocked that Palin didn't know? No. Should she know? Probably by now. Will she learn? Certainly. Is it a big deal? No. Is it at least a little deal, telling us something about Palin's general lack of knowledge of important international and homeland security issues? Sure. Should it dictate who I vote for? No. Should it have some impact on my consideration of which ticket to support? Absolutely.
9.13.2008 9:51pm
EIDE_Interface (mail):
Cold Warrior - it's ok. We know you're an Obamabot.
9.13.2008 10:18pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
More fun stuff.

CFR, 11/16/02:

Policy Implications of the Bush Doctrine on Preemption… We live a world in which terrorists and tyrants may join forces to develop and use technologies of mass destruction to inflict grievous harm against the United States and its friends … How should our government respond to this new threat? In its National Security Strategy released last September, the Bush administration answers by promulgating a radically new doctrine of military preemption.


WP, 3/16/06:

Bush Restates Terror Strategy; 2002 Doctrine of Preemptive War Reaffirmed; President Bush issued a new national security strategy today reaffirming his doctrine of preemptive war against terrorists and hostile states with chemical, biological or nuclear weapons, despite the troubled U.S. experience in Iraq.


Foxnews, 4/9/08:

MCCAIN REFUSES TO RULE OUT OPTION OF PRE-EMPTIVE WAR; … McCain refused Wednesday to rule out a pre-emptive war against another country… [he] was asked Wednesday at a town-hall style meeting if he would reject “the Bush doctrine of pre-emptive war,” a reference to Bush’s decision to invade Iraq without it having attacked the United States.


Foxnews, 7/22/07:

WALLACE: If our enemies are regenerating their safe haven in Pakistan, under the Bush doctrine of preemptive military action to take out any threat, why aren't we doing everything we can — special operations forces, pilotless drones — why aren't we doing everything we can to take out that safe haven?


Foxnews, 7/16/06:

WALLACE: … Are we so bogged down now in Iraq that these rogue nations look at the situation and no longer take seriously the Bush doctrine of preemptive action?


BusinessWeek, 1/14/04:

During the question-and-answer session, Gephardt wouldn't really say that the Bush doctrine of preemptive warfare was wrong


Pajamasmedia, 9/11/07:

In all Podhoretz is Bush’s best theoretical defender by far, at least that I have read. In fact, the selections he makes from the President’s speeches advocating the “Bush Doctrine” (preemptive action against terrorism) are quite eloquent and persuasive.


Susan Brooks Thistlethwaite, WP, 3/17/08:

The threat that Saddam Hussein would “provide weapons of mass destruction to Al- Qaeda justified pre-emptive war (the so called “Bush Doctrine”)


The term "Bush Doctrine" is not mysterious. It's not obscure. It's in common use, and the most common meaning is "preemptive war." That's been true for years, and it's still true. The term is used that way by people on the left and people on the right. People who are curious, and interested, and pay attention to foreign affairs are aware of this. Palin is not part of that group.
9.13.2008 10:20pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
I think it's interesting to notice that Gibson asked the same question at the GOP debate on 1/6/08:

Let me just ratchet up the question slightly and ask you if you believe in the Bush doctrine.


So I guess Palin didn't watch that debate, and her briefers didn't have time to tell her what McCain said at the debates. Because McCain answered the question, along with all the other candidates.
9.13.2008 10:20pm
Kazinski:
Jukeboxgrad:

Pay no attention to the numerous non-liberals I cited who spoke of Bush's Doctrine of preemption.

The problem is that Slaughter (the foreign policy expert) was quite comfortable with this definition:

Johnson: Let's say a fairly aggressive strategy of promoting democracy, a willingness to use military force, and a refusal to be put off from using that force because you haven't been able to put an international alliance in place. Plus the idea that the root cause of the threat is the stagnation – politically, economically and culturally – of an entire region, so the only serious response is to promote political change in that region.

So it is a nebulous term, which is why Slaughter wanted to know what Johnson meant.

I will not strain anybodies credulity by claiming that Palin is ready to step in as the McCain's National Securtity Advisor, but I ask you, if I take your word for it and she totally flubbed the question which should I take more seriously, Palin flubbing an question in an interview, or Obama completely getting the surge wrong in a national security debate where coming up with the correct answer had enourmous implications to the security of the country? Palin (by your lights) flubbed an academic question in a Barbara Walters style interview. Barack Obama went out of his way to make himself heard in an extremely critical policy debate.

Which wrong answer should influence my vote more?
9.13.2008 10:54pm
Roger Schlafly (www):
Jukeboxgrad posts several references to terms like "the Bush doctrine of preemptive military action". They only show that there is no one Bush doctrine that is widely recognized, and some qualification is need to specificy which Bush doctrine is being discussed. So that is why Palin had to ask.
9.13.2008 10:54pm
Grover Gardner (mail):

Jukeboxgrad posts several references to terms like "the Bush doctrine of preemptive military action".


He's posted dozens at this point. And he's mainly posted them because you continue to insist there's no such thing. Quit while you're behind.
9.13.2008 11:22pm
Smokey:
Take away the liberals' failed assumption that presupposes Gov. Palin has never before heard of the Bush doctrine, and what have they got?

Answer: they've got nothin'.

Word up.
9.13.2008 11:24pm
Johnny Canuck (mail):
Jukeboxgrad:
thank you for the reference to the January debate when all the Republican candidates dealt with the Bush doctrine. In fairness to Charles Gibson, (which I wasn't in an earlier post) he clearly was aware of the Bush doctrine. Of course it isn't a good comparative test as he explained the concept for the benefit of the contestants and the audience before asking McCain et al whether they believed in it.
9.13.2008 11:39pm
Johnny Canuck (mail):
Kazinski:
If you've seen the excerpts from Woodward's new book, it appears Obama was in very good company about the surge: the Joint Chiefs of Staff and General Casey were also against it.

As to acknowledging the success of the surge, it may be that Obama is too intellectually honest, for it seems likely (again from Woodward) that factors other than the 30,000 increase in US troops are mainly responsible for the improved situation: new US technology to hunt and kill terrorists; the Anbar awakening; the truce with the Shia militia. No doubt there has been synergy so that the additional troops helped the others, but i expect that a history book written 10 years from now isn't going to say the troop surge was the main factor.
9.13.2008 11:46pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
schafly:

Jukeboxgrad posts several references to terms like "the Bush doctrine of preemptive military action".


Count how many I posted. In Schafly-world, the word "several" is highly elastic.

They only show that there is no one Bush doctrine that is widely recognized


On the contrary. They show that there is one meaning that is widely understood. NRO said "the essence of the Bush Doctrine" is preemption.

some qualification is need to specificy which Bush doctrine is being discussed. So that is why Palin had to ask.


But she didn't say 'please tell me which Bush doctrine is being discussed.' Instead she asked an evasive, ambiguous question ("in what respect"). And then she gave another answer ("his world view") which indicated she had no idea what the term meant.

She was free to say, right from the start, 'the term has multiple meanings, so let's be clear about what meaning we're talking about.' But she said nothing of the sort, even though she had four or five chances to do so (because he repeated the question several times). So the problem is not that she knew about a bunch of different Bush Doctrines. The problem is that she wasn't even familiar with one Bush Doctrine.
9.14.2008 12:08am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
kaz:

So it is a nebulous term, which is why Slaughter wanted to know what Johnson meant.


Then Palin should have said 'it's a nebulous term, so please tell me what you mean.' She had several chances to make a statement like that, but didn't.

By the way, the problem is not just that she didn't know. The problem is that she had no difficulty bluffing, and pretending that she understood something that she didn't understand. Ignorance and extreme self-confidence are a toxic combination.

Obama completely getting the surge wrong


You're making a variety of assumptions about the surge that I don't accept (see what Johnny said). And if you think it's important to discuss judgments regarding the surge, then it's far more important to discuss judgments regarding the war. McCain said we would "win it easily." And now he wants to put Palin a heartbeat away. In my opinion, those are two very vivid indications of poor judgment.

a Barbara Walters style interview


Palin could have picked any interviewer she wanted. She picked Gibson. And the 'doctrine' question was the exact question Gibson asked McCain (and the other candidates) earlier this year. The fact that she was so unprepared for the question is very unimpressive. Likewise for the fact that she tried to bluff her way around it, instead of candidly asking for clarification.

She could have said something like this: 'that phrase is Beltway jargon, and it means different things to different people, so I'd rather you just ask the question in plain English.' That would have been honest, and disarming. But what she said was nothing like that. Because she realized it was something she was supposed to know, and something that she didn't know, and she decided to bluff, instead of being candid.

I see it as a character issue as much as a knowledge issue.
9.14.2008 12:08am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
johnny:

Of course it isn't a good comparative test as he explained the concept for the benefit of the contestants and the audience before asking McCain et al whether they believed in it.


Good point. That's true. I speculate that maybe he thought he would have been insulting both his guest and his audience if he dragged them through the same explanation he gave in a debate earlier this year. I think it would have been reasonable for him to assume that his guest and much/most of his audience had seen the debate.

He might have even thought he was tossing her a softball. He might have thought 'surely she has reviewed what McCain said in the debates, and particularly what I asked candidates in the debates, so this will be a nice chance for her to show that she needs no special support to give us a nice, crisp answer regarding the Bush Doctrine. After all, she just has to remember what McCain said when I asked him this exact question.'

If I were him, and I was trying to trip her up, I think the last thing I would do is ask the exact same question I had asked McCain in a recent debate.
9.14.2008 12:08am
Johnny Canuck (mail):
jukeboxgrad:
I never watch Gibson so I really don't know where he stands, but wasn't the conventional wisdom that he had been chosen by the McCain camp because he was the softest and most sympathetic of the MSM?
9.14.2008 12:14am
metro1 (mail) (www):
jukeboxgrad:

Since you are so good at reading minds, please let us know:

1. Why did Joe Biden commit plagiarism at least twice? What was he thinking?

2. Why did Barack Obama work for years with Bill Ayers even though he was an admitted domestic terrorist? What was he thinking?
9.14.2008 12:16am
Grover Gardner (mail):

Take away the liberals' failed assumption that presupposes Gov. Palin has never before heard of the Bush doctrine, and what have they got?

Answer: they've got nothin'.


Aw, now--we've always got you, Smokey!
9.14.2008 12:18am
Grover Gardner (mail):

1. Why did Joe Biden commit plagiarism at least twice? What was he thinking?

2. Why did Barack Obama work for years with Bill Ayers even though he was an admitted domestic terrorist? What was he thinking?


Thread over. The bottom-feeders have taken over.
9.14.2008 12:21am
metro1 (mail) (www):
Grover Gardner:

The "bottom-feeders" - to use your phrase - are the ones who promote someone who associated with a domestic terrorist, and a serial plagiarist ... and then have the audacity to call others "bottom-feeders."
9.14.2008 12:28am
one of many:

So I guess Palin didn't watch that debate, and her briefers didn't have time to tell her what McCain said at the debates. Because McCain answered the question, along with all the other candidates.


Except McCain didn't actually answer that question (nor did anyone else). The question McCain answered was :"Let me just ratchet up the question slightly and ask you if you believe in the Bush doctrine. Because in September 2002 -- up for years, our foreign policy has been based on the idea that we form alliances, international consensus. We attack -- retaliate if we're attacked. But in 2002, the president said we have a right to a pre-emptive attack; that we can attack if this country feels threatened. And on that basis, WMD, we went into Iraq. We've cited the threat of a nuclear Iran to leave the military option on the table. Do you agree with the doctrine, Senator McCain, if you were president, or would you change it?" You'll notice the difference, mention the doctrine by name, explain what Gibson means when using the phrase "Bush Doctrine" and ask for an opinion on it versus mention the doctrine by name and ask for an opinion of it.
9.14.2008 12:35am
Cold Warrior:
EIDE_Interface said:


Cold Warrior - it's ok. We know you're an Obamabot.


Actually, no. And if you just do a quick search for posts under my name, I think it would be awfully difficult to pigeonhole my political views.

On the other hand, it's awfully easy to pigeonhole this EIDE_Interface guy's political views; this pigeon guided us to his own little hole with this gem of a post on August 30:


All I need to know about Sarah Palin are 2 things:

1. Her fundamental decency and great family
2. The leftists and paleocons are going apeshit over this selection.

FTW McCain, you sly old coot.


Have you ever considered that no one really wants to read your mindless posts?
9.14.2008 12:42am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
I never watch Gibson so I really don't know where he stands, but wasn't the conventional wisdom that he had been chosen by the McCain camp because he was the softest and most sympathetic of the MSM?


I also never watch Gibson. I almost never watch tee-vee. But there's no doubt that Palin could have picked almost anyone she wanted, and she picked Gibson. And there's also no doubt that the question which hurt her the most is the same question Gibson had already asked McCain. So she has no excuse for being unprepared.
9.14.2008 12:52am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
metro, since you're eager to change the subject, maybe you'd like to explain why Palin is still married to a person who joined an organization that promotes this belief:

I'm an Alaskan, not an American. I've got no use for America or her damned institutions.


This should concern us, because Todd Palin is not just her husband. He's also (according to her) one of her closest advisors. This is the answer she gave (via her lawyer) when she was asked to explain why Todd is copied on many official emails. She's hiding those emails behind a veil of 'executive privilege.' More proof that she's Bush in a skirt.

You should also tell us why Palin went to her church on 8/17/08 and sat through a sermon which "described terrorist attacks on Israelis as God's 'judgment of unbelief' of Jews who haven't embraced Christianity."
9.14.2008 12:52am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
one:

You'll notice the difference, mention the doctrine by name, explain what Gibson means when using the phrase "Bush Doctrine" and ask for an opinion on it versus mention the doctrine by name and ask for an opinion of it


Have you read the thread? Johnny already noticed what you noticed, and I already explained why I think Gibson didn't repeat exactly what he said in January.
9.14.2008 12:53am
AKD:

While it was lame the way that Gibson asked Palin about the "Bush Doctrine," it was certainly legitmate to ask her opinion on preemptive war in general. It's very unfortunate that we get caught up in whether the question was phrased in a fair manner, rather than her answer to the substantive and fair question.



Him not simply asking that is proof that he wasn't looking for an answer to that question. He was trying to setup a gotcha.
9.14.2008 1:00am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
He was trying to setup a gotcha


I've explained why there is reason to think otherwise. But even if he was, she still handled herself poorly. If she is elected, she could end up facing adversaries a lot tougher than Charlie Gibson. If she can be outsmarted by him, that doesn't bode well.
9.14.2008 1:17am
Grover Gardner (mail):

The "bottom-feeders" - to use your phrase - are the ones who promote someone who associated with a domestic terrorist, and a serial plagiarist ... and then have the audacity to call others "bottom-feeders."


Save it for Bernstein's next post.
9.14.2008 2:20am
Melancton Smith:
I like how Gibson provides the presidential candidates with a multi-media presentation describing the context around the question first...


I want to start with foreign policy. Just to set some context, we've got a little background here from ABC's Jonathan Karl.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JONATHAN KARL, ABC CORRESPONDENT: When he was on the debate stage eight years ago... GOV. GEORGE W. BUSH, R-TX: If we're an arrogant nation, they'll resent us. If we're a humble nation...

KARL: Candidate George Bush promised a humble foreign policy.

After September 11, a new Bush doctrine: the United States would hit its enemies before they hit us, hence, the Iraq war.

On terrorism, President Bush told the world, "You're either with us or you're against us." With the second term, an even bolder vision.

PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: With the ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our world.

END VIDEOTAPE)

KARL: Sounding like Woodrow Wilson, the president vowed to push for democracy everywhere.

There are exceptions. Support for Musharraf in Pakistan, for example, and the nuclear deal offered to North Korea.

From the axis of evil to nation-building in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Bush policy has been bold but not exactly humble.
9.14.2008 2:34am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
I like how Gibson provides the presidential candidates with a multi-media presentation describing the context around the question first


I like how you're ignoring the fact that I already explained that he might have thought he didn't need to repeat himself, since he already did that presentation earlier this year. He might have even assumed that a GOP leader like Palin had actually watched the GOP debates. Apparently an incorrect assumption.

Anyway, it's fun to see the people now popping up to claim that the Bush Doctrine isn't about preemption. These people are claiming that what Gibson said in January is wrong. Did anyone speak up at the time, to complain that he was wrong about the Bush Doctrine? Surely there should have been many such complaints. Krauthammer just said Gibson committed a "gaffe." Then surely he also committed a gaffe in January. So someone must have noticed and complained, right?

It would interest me greatly if someone could show an example of such a thing. I predict that this many examples are going to appear: zero.
9.14.2008 2:50am
Richard Aubrey (mail):
Juke.
As has been described above, the Bush Doctrine is whatever anybody says it is.
Bush didn't put his views out and insist they be called the Bush Doctrine and nobody should touch a jot or tittle of the words world without end amen.
Had Palin not asked for claiification,IMO, had she answered perfectly well, Gibson would have claimed the Bush Doctrine meant something else and so she was wrong.
Because, among other things, the Bush Doctrine has several components. Plenty of room for a "gotcha", pretending that the answer she might have given didn't address another component.
Now, I know Juke is smart. He knows this. But he keeps on pretending the false is true.
And he does it in a venue where, he must know, everybody knows better.
I don't get it.
9.14.2008 9:31am
Anony:
"Do you believe in God?"

"In what respect, Charlie?"

"Well, what do you think it means?"

"A supreme being?"

"No, God. As defined by the Synod of Hippo in 393 AD." [puts on impatient teacher look]
9.14.2008 11:54am
Bad (mail) (www):
"I still don't understand why people who attack Palin are so concerned with her experience as Vice President and not Obama's as President?"

Because Obama has demonstrated his ability to think about, understand, and have a position on all the relevant issues. Palin has failed to even be able to recite prepped talking points after two weeks of solid cramming.

Palin didn't just express confusion about exactly what Gibson meant by an ambiguous term. She both was genuinely baffled about the entire subject, as if she'd never thought about it, AND attempted to bluff her way through it by trying to pretend she knew what he was talking about.

It's one thing to be uninformed about something. It's another to be a bold liar. But put the two together and you have quite a spectacle.
9.14.2008 12:47pm
Bad (mail) (www):
"He[Gibson] was more interested in those “gotcha” questions"

You know, it's funny. How come EVERY question that gets asked of Palin turns into a "gotcha" question? Isn't it possible that the problem is that every question is a "gotcha" question for her, not anything in particular about the questions themselves?
9.14.2008 12:51pm
Richard Aubrey (mail):
Bad. It's not EVERY question.
But the point is, the MSM does gotchas on republicans. That's their style. Palin is a republican.
Thus....
9.14.2008 1:04pm
elim:
you pick an assortment of statements and somehow call it the Bush Doctrine. I could likely find some statements and, certainly, actions that contradict it (our backing of Palestinian terrorists-ie. the Rice Doctrine; our relations with Saudi Arabia, significant funder of terrorism).
9.14.2008 4:10pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
richard:

the Bush Doctrine is whatever anybody says it is


Only if you're an inhabitant of bizarro-GOP world, where facts don't matter, and truth doesn't matter, and the normal meanings of words don't matter.

Had Palin not asked for claiification,IMO, had she answered perfectly well, Gibson would have claimed the Bush Doctrine meant something else and so she was wrong.


The problem is not that she had a wrong idea of what the term meant. The problem is that she had no idea what the term meant.
9.14.2008 4:33pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
elim:

you pick an assortment of statements and somehow call it the Bush Doctrine


Wrong. It's not that I call something "the Bush Doctrine." It's that dozens of people I quoted called something "the Bush Doctrine." Here's that something: preemption.
9.14.2008 4:34pm
A. Zarkov (mail):
According to the Urban Dictionary the Bush Doctrine is:
A policy of preemptive strike, as proposed by President George W. Bush.

"My pants weren't dirty yet, but I Bush Doctrined them and washed them anyway."

"I'm going to Bush Doctrine this test, because I can't study at the last minute."

"If that asshat so much as looks at me again, I'm going to Bush Doctrine his face into the ground."
So there you go.
9.14.2008 8:49pm
Richard Aubrey (mail):
Juke.
I have to give you credit for smearing yourself with crap, over and over. That's determination.
The Bush Doctrine has, as many have described, at least four different themes. And since anybody can call anything the Bush Doctrine, and since there's no US equivalent of the Academie Real to keep meanings pure, anybody can mean anything by the "Bush Doctrine". So it behooves a person in Palin's position to ask what part of it the questioner wants addressed.
Gibson was trying for a gotcha. Any answer Palin would have given would have been answered by a condescending correction that the Bush Doctrine meant something else. This was a performance, not an interview. Palin knew that.
And since ABC whacked huge chunks of what was said anyway out of the interview, any effort by Palin to bring the conversation back on track would have ended up on the cutting room floor,. as well. So, as a smart person, she made Gibson put his cards down first. Not what ol' Charlie had in mind.
9.14.2008 11:06pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
All she had to do was give the same answer that McCain gave when Gibson asked McCain the exact same question. I see that no one wants to try to explain why she couldn't manage to do this. Even after Gibson handed her four or five chances to do it.
9.14.2008 11:32pm
Richard Aubrey (mail):
juke.
You know that the proper response to a journalist is paranoia, don't you?
They lie. They make stuff up. They re-edit your responses.
Palin would have shown her unfitness for VP or any public office if she'd presumed Gibson was acting in good faith.
So she played defense. Good for her.
9.15.2008 12:00am
TCO:
Gibson is a fluff head. Most of these three letter newsies are. I could run circles around him. Could tear him to peices. Physically or mentally.

If Gibson wanted to know what Palin thought of pre-emption, than ask that. If he wanted to know how the foreign policy of McCain would differ from Bush than ask that. But the "Bush Doctrine" thing just comes accross like what it is: a fluffhead using a buzzword and thinking that makes him look smart.
9.15.2008 1:04am
TCO:
When was the last time we talked about the Bush Doctrine, here? I would warrent that if someone started something, others would demand definition. Only Gibson (the fluffhead reliant on assistants) thinks it's some magical term. I don't know if I've ever used that term.
9.15.2008 1:06am
A. Zarkov (mail):
Edward Teller had a policy of requiring the media to either broadcast his interviews in their entirety or let him review it first. One time in the middle of an interview he walked off the set of Sixty Minutes. Thanks to the Sullivan Decision the media can get away with almost anything.
9.15.2008 6:12am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
So she played defense. Good for her.


That's not what she did. What she did is reveal that she's so ignorant she wasn't even familiar with the statements that McCain had made in the debates. All she had to do was give Gibson the same answer that McCain gave Gibson. Because Gibson asked McCain the same question.
9.15.2008 9:26am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
a fluffhead using a buzzword


Above I cited about two dozen "fluffhead[s]" (mostly Republicans) using precisely that "buzzword." Must be lots of "fluffhead[s]" in the GOP.

When was the last time we talked about the Bush Doctrine, here?


8/12/08. And NRO mentioned "the Bush doctrine of preemption" on 6/6/08. Those darn "fluffhead[s]!"

I don't know if I've ever used that term.


I guess that settles it. You're obviously qualified to be a GOP VP.
9.15.2008 9:26am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
Thanks to the Sullivan Decision the media can get away with almost anything.


Thanks to an ignorant and complacent population, our politicians "can get away with almost anything." And do a lot more harm than the media is capable of doing.
9.15.2008 9:26am
ejo:
doctrine of preemptive military strikes-you mean like the preemptive strikes we have used against Iran, North Korea and Syria? the ones we have launched against Hugo Chavez? if that is the doctrine (and it is, jbg says so and how could one doubt a person living in his parent's basement, alone and childless), why haven't we actually been using it?
9.15.2008 10:55am
Turk Turon (mail):
Gibso was administering what amounted to a "literacy test" to Palin. Like the Southern judges used to do when blacks tried to register to vote; they would ask questions like, "Explain the legal principal of estoppel."
9.15.2008 7:22pm