Back in '04, when Shrub was maintaining that only a few insurgents were preventing our armies from establishing a beacon of democracy in Iraq, we wanted nothing more than to hear John Kerry say to him, "Mr President, in 2000, America's armies were the most powerful in the world. After four years of your leadership, her armies are now obstructed by 'only a few insurgents.' Can America have her army back now, or is there more waste and ruin to come?" Kerry didn't speak, but the voters did: They wanted more isolationism, more protectionism, and more fear-mongering. So that's what we got.
Parag Khanna has a forthcoming book, excerpted in this week's NYTimes Mag, which describes this state of affairs pretty well:
Twenty-first-century geopolitics will resemble nothing more than Orwell’s 1984, but instead of three world powers (Oceania, Eurasia and Eastasia), we have three hemispheric pan-regions, longitudinal zones dominated by America, Europe and China.(If you want the Bush legacy in a nutshell, that's it.) On an optimistic day, Caroline Kennedy could have convinced us a young, charismatic Obama could do something about this, but more likely, we'll just end up throwing him on the flames of our Pyrrhic fire.
On an admistrative/meta-blogging note, we're also trying to branch out from getting all our education from the NYTimes Mag. Informed Reader at WSJ is becoming a key supplement.