A Surge in DC?

Courtesy of Catholicgauze, good news about replication of the Baghdad “walls” strategy in our nation’s capital:

Geographic Travels with Catholicgauze!: Geography of Denial of Movement
All this is an effort to finally bring order to some of the worst parts of the nation’s capital. The plan has some recent precedents supporting it. Walls in Baghdad have managed to keep fighting neighboring ethnic groups separate. The walls, especially those keeping back Sadr’s Mahdi Army, have been credited in lowering the level of violence. The Israeli government is building barriers between Israel-proper and the Gaza Strip and West Bank. The West Bank Wall is praised by some for preventing infiltration by suicide bombers.

The way denial of movement works is 1) it is harder for an outsider to enter another neighborhood and cause trouble (people usually do not wage violence near their homes) 2) law enforcement has greater ground knowledge of what is going on (it is much easier to control a smaller area than a larger area) and 3) increased police presences acts as a signal showing who is in control.

This is a good idea. The question then becomes which of the major candidates supports it? Obama’s record is a weak on urban COIN, so the question is: does Barack Obama support a ‘Surge’ in Washington?

I guess no.

Update: Fabius Maximus has more on this good news.

Obama as the Worst Shot

The Democratic Primary race is over, with South Dakota’s last-in-the-nation primary brining the fight to a close. Looking at the map is informative, as most of South Dakota’s neighbors already “voted” in caucuses. South Dakota went for Hillary by 11 points, in spite of an endorsement by former Majority Leader Tom Daschle. Most of South Dakota’s neighbors went for Obama.

This implies that Barack Obama’s support within the Democratic Party has seriously eroded since earlier this year (likely), that Barack Obama does better in caucuses than in elections where the old and the working can vote (likely), or both (also likely).

Obama now limps past the finish line, Obama’s all but certainly won the majority of Democratic delegates, while Clinton wins a pluraity of Democratic votes. Thus, November will likely see a race between John McCain and Barack Obama.

As someone who wants what good things for our country, it’s disturbing that Barack Obama is one step closer to becoming President. We already had Jimmy Carter, and he didnt’ work out. But as someone who wants what’s best for the Republican Party, I need to thank the Democratic party machine. They will chose the most racially and chronically divisive viable candidate, one who gives the Republicans the best shot of winning the Presidency and America the best shot at a divided government.

So to Democrats who supported Barack Obama: thank you. Just keep up the crazy talk (Obama will end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan; Obama doesn’t believe in war as a tool of policy; Obama will meet with hostile foreign leaders regardless of the circumstances, etc). I already know that Obama supports both sides of every policy (Obama will implement a Surge in Afghanistan; Obama will invade Pakistan, Obama will not meet with Iran unless his preconditions are met, etc). He just can do the most damage to himself if his supporters emphasizes the crazier sides he supports.

Thomas Friedman on Barack Obama

I’ve been saying to a few friends that Obama’s words, while deceitful, are not self contradictory: he has quietly maintained a legalistic distinction between “preparation” and “precondition” that allows him to appear to say two things at once. Tom Friedman now calls Obama on this:

Op-Ed Columnist – Thomas L. Friedman – It’s All About Leverage – Op-Ed – NYTimes.com
Barack Obama is getting painfully close to tying himself in knots with all his explanations of the conditions under which he would unconditionally talk with America’s foes, like Iran. His latest clarification was that there is a difference between “preparations” and “preconditions” for negotiations with bad guys. Such hair-splitting word games do not inspire confidence, and they play right into the arms of his critics. The last place he wants to look uncertain is on national security.

The next paragraph describes some “Bush III”-like promises from Obama. The rest of the article is pretty good, too.

The Political Consequences of Bigotry

A race-based campaign that flirts with black nationalism and and racial preferences has negative consequences:

My Way News – Clinton wins Puerto Rico primary but Obama gains delegates
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) – Hillary Rodham Clinton won a lopsided, but largely symbolic victory Sunday in Puerto Rico’s presidential primary, the final act in a weekend of tumult that brought Barack Obama tantalizingly close to the Democratic presidential nomination.

The former first lady was gaining more than 60 percent of the vote in early returns, and a pre-election poll suggested she could wind up with nearly two-thirds support.

Too little and too late to deny Obama the Democratic nomination.

Perhaps enough to reverse the damage to the GOP caused by the know-nothing faction, and (hopefully) to give the Presidency to John McCain this november.

More Donations to Burma than China

While China has been displaying a level of unprecedented openness and concern for human rights, Burma is allowing her citizens to die of disease and neglect in the shadows. So why has Burma (which diverts aid to its military) been a bigger recipient of international aid than China? Historyguy has more:

HG’s WORLD: Update: A Tale of Two Countries

The contributions to date for Burma, $147,772,066 and China, $187,808,221 seem to be out of sync, with the amount pledged to Burma close to the amount pledged to China. Perhaps a reflection of the needs of a country further down the resource chain from China. The unsettling thing is the question of how much of that $147 million will go to line the pockets of the ruling junta members?

If you think about it for a bit, the answer won’t surprise you.

The Political Benefits of Bigotry

One way that Barack Obama’s synching of the Democratic nomination helps Republicans is that it gives control of the Democratic Party in ’08 to a rather ugly collection of know-nothings. Republican know-nothings seriously hurt the party’s in-roads with Mexicans and latinos, as they publicly and effectively attacked George Bush and John McCain for their comprehensive immigration reform program. It now looks like Barack Obama’s supporters on the left will steal some of that thunder. While Obama offers lukewarm support for comprehensive immigration reform, his advocacy of laws & regulations that discrimination against asians, his opposition to free trade with Asian countries, and Hillary’s (as opposed to Obama’s) high profile work with the Indian American Congress threaten to alienate him from yet another racial group. (Having already written on how white folks green runs a world in need and belonging to a racist church for two decades, he has long since alienated himself from most whites.)

And now, Obama supporters like Jeffrey indicate that hostility toward immigration folkways may be widespread on the left:

At least Barack, unlike a certain Piyush what’s-his-face, can promote himself without having to adopt an Angle sounding nickname for the sole purpose of not scaring his base away.

What a perfect combination of ignorance, bigotry, and multiculturalism.

I really don’t want Obama and his supporters to introduce more hate to this campaign: they have already done enough. But if they (and their supporters) continue in this direction, it will be good for the GOP.