Advertising
anchor link to jump to start of content

The Seattle Times Company NWclassifieds NWsource seattletimes.com
seattletimes.com Home delivery Contact us Search archives
Your account  Today's news index  Weather  Traffic  Movies  Restaurants  Today's events
  NWCLASSIFIEDS
  NWSOURCE
  SERVICES





Between the Lines

October 19, 2004

Undecided bloggers are beginning to break

Bloggers are human too, whatever doubts you might harbor. Some have been carefully watching the presidential campaign develop before deciding who they're going to hang their chad for. But they're beginning to make up their minds, and what they have to say is good reading.

We'll begin with Greg Djerejian, an American lawyer who writes the thoughtful and usually conservative Belgravia Dispatch from London.

He has a long and interesting post that deconstructs the semingly countless screwups of the Bush administration in Iraq then explains why he plans to vote for the president anyway. The post is well worth a full read, but here's Djerejian's bottom line:

George Bush, in my view, understands the nature of the evil we are combating. He understands it deep in his gut, to his very core, and this is why I will be voting for him in November. To be sure, I am voting for him with many reservations (of which more below); but I am confident and, indeed, proud of my vote because Bush's intellectual firmament has grasped this essential truth.

**

I don't believe, in his gut, Kerry believes that we face an existential challenge with regard to the war on terror.

Next we have a couple of respected bloggers who I'd describe as centrists, Daniel Drezner, a University of Chicago prof and international affairs expert, and David Adesnik, who writes at Oxblog.

First, the professor (ignore the math references; he's an economist):

After the debates, I'd say my p-value for Kerry is now at 0.8 (i.e., an 80% chance of voting for Kerry). I'm still uneasy about making this choice, because I remain unconvinced that Kerry understands the limits of multilateral diplomacy.

But here's Drezner's bottom line:

Given the foreign policy stakes in this election, I prefer a leader who has a good decision-making process, even if his foreign policy instincts are skewed in a direction I don't like, over a leader who has a bad decision-making process, even if his foreign policy instincts are skewed in a direction I do like.

Yes, competence does count. Since his original post, Drezner has received a lot of e-mail, and he has a lengthy second post addressing some of the questions raised by readers. It's worth reading as well.

Adesnik's big problem with Kerry is not his perhaps naive belief in the efficacy of multilateral diplomacy,

Rather, it is his total resistance to making about any positive statement about the importance of ensuring a democratic outcome in Iraq. Even though things are not going well on the ground, I believe that a true opportunity for democratization still exists. But that opportunity will amount to nothing in the absence of an all-out American effort to take advantage of it.

Nonetheless, he expects Kerry to attempt to establish a stable, representative government in Iraq:

I believe that Kerry recognizes the danger of withdrawing from Iraq before it is stabilized. And I don't believe that Kerry could accept (let alone achieve) a process of stabilization that isn't democratic.

This doesn't mean that I expect Kerry to consistently make the right decisions about democracy in Iraq. In fact, I fully expect there to be a major struggle within the Democratic Party to define Kerry's agenda should he become President. I will simply do my best to play my small part in that struggle and to persuade as many Democrats as I can that democracy is the answer for Iraq.

Ultimately, I recognize that the arguments made above reflect a considerable degree of speculation about Kerry's motives. Thus, I will not hold it against anyone if they vote for Bush because their subjective assessment of the candidates' motives is different from my own.

There's some chewy reading here.

Posted by tbrown at 01:28 PM




 October 2004
S M T W T F S
          1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30
31            

 ARCHIVES
October 2004
September 2004
August 2004
July 2004
June 2004
May 2004
April 2004
March 2004
February 2004
January 2004
December 2003
November 2003
October 2003
September 2003
August 2003
July 2003
June 2003

 RECENT ENTRIES
Undecided bloggers are beginning to break

 LINKS

Blogs to watch

Abu Ardvark
Altercation
Andrew Sullivan
Antiwar.com
Atrios Eschaton
Best of the Web
DailyKOS
Defensetech
Drudge Report
GlobalSecurity.org
Instapundit
Joe Conason (subscription required)
Josh Marshall
Kaus files
No More Mr. Nice Blog
Real Clear Politics
Tapped
The Corner
The Volokh Conspiracy
The Whiskey Bar

Mideast blogs

Salam Pax (Iraq)
G. in Baghdad
L.T. Smash (U.S. military in Iraq)
Lady Sun (Iran)

City blogs

Gawker
L.A. Examiner

Africa blogs

AfricaPundit
Cathy Buckle

Media blogs

Romenesko
Dan Gillmor's eJournal
Media Whores Online

Newspapers

Newspapers online (guide to papers on the web)
International Herald Tribune
The Guardian U.K.
New York Times (free registration required)

Economy blogs

EconoPundit
Brad DeLong

Powered by
Movable Type 2.51


seattletimes.com home
Home delivery | Contact us | Search archive | Site map | Low-graphic
NWclassifieds | NWsource | Advertising info | The Seattle Times Company

Copyright

Back to topBack to top