So I don’t know exactly where Syria is, either — but I’m not proposing to relieve the President of his job. (No, Mitt: Syria is not Iran’s path to the sea. For starters, it doesn’t border Iran; for finishers, if the blue parts of this map represent water, as I’m all but certain they do, then Iran has 700 or 800 miles of Persian Gulf coastline.)
I loved the exchange that gets to the core of what would be $2 trillion that Mr. Romney would have us taxpayers cough up for unrequested increased military spending: the part of the debate last night where Governor Romney said our Navy would soon have fewer vessels than in 1917 and the President noted that we also have fewer horses and bayonets — but that the nature of our capability has changed. For one thing, you can actually land airplanes on our ships now.
(As Admiral Sestak noted on “Up W/ Chris Hayes” Sunday, it’s not the number of ships that matters, it’s their capability. Improvements in technology have multiplied the air-strike capability of our aircraft carriers nine-fold in just the last 15 years. So in at least some respects, it’s as though we have nine times as many carriers as we did in 1997.)
The President was strong and steady last night — it’s in his DNA. Consistent. Deliberate. Clear-headed.
Governor Romney? Well, he has a tendency to flip flop. To the extent one can tell, he seems basically to want to replay the Bush years. Build up the military and cut taxes for the rich. Why else would 17 of his 24 foreign policy advisers be alumni of the Bush team? Why else would billionaires be pouring hundreds of millions of dollars into trying to elect him?
GIULIANI, MCCAIN, SANTORUM, AND COLIN POWELL ON MITT
Watch what they have to say. Tweet! Take viral! It’s devastating.
AND, YES, THE PRESIDENT HAS A PLAN FOR HIS SECOND TERM
It’s complete nonsense to say he doesn’t — but if the opposition says it often enough, and puts millions of dollars of ad dollars behind the idea, it catches hold. Click here to see the President’s plan (and to drill down on each item).
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Quote of the Day
To the old money, the world is a conspiracy of thieves. To the new money, the world is a department store.~Lewis Lapham
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