Sunday, January 18, 2015

John Kerry Embarrasses Himself and America

Having brought you the stirring story of John Kerry’s most recent foray into diplomacy—commemorating the terrorist attack on France by having James Taylor serenade the French with what I called, very generously, an “adolescent anthem”-- I am more than happy to offer as a follow-up Kevin Williamson’s well-crafted comments on National Review.

I understand that some people do not understand why the Kerry/Taylor gambit was offensive, insulting and pathetic. I advise them to apply to the White House immediately for a job.

Anyway, Williamson opined:

The spectacle of the Obama administration’s dispatching Secretary of State John Kerry to “share a big hug with Paris” as James Taylor — who still exists — crooned “You’ve Got a Friend” is the perfect objective correlative for American decline: The pathetic self-regard of John Kerry and James Taylor’s Baby Boomers meets the cynical, self-serving, going-through-the-motions style of Barack Obama’s Generation X as disenchanted Millennials in parental basements across the fruited plains no doubt injured their thumbs typing “WTF?” It is the substitution of celebrity for power, of sentiment for analysis, of sloppy gesture for clear-headed commitment.

We’re responding to barbarism from the 7th century with soft rock from the 1970s.

Astutely drawing an historical analogy, Williamson continues:

In our hour of need, the French gave us Lafayette. In theirs, we sent them the guy who drained all the sugar out of “How Sweet It Is” and substituted saccharin.

Finally, Williamson closes with a reflection on the fact that we Americans have occasionally mocked for French for being pusillanimous. Given the Obama/Kerry/Taylor diplomatic initiative, we ought perhaps to give it a rest. After all, Barack Obama was twice elected president of these United States. What does that say about America?

We Americans sometimes laugh at the French — cheese-eating surrender monkeys and all that — but in World War I they lost nearly 1.8 million people, or nearly 5 percent of their population, losses that were proportionally more than 30 times those we suffered in that horrific conflict. (In World War II, the French death rate was only four times ours.) They may have lost some of their fighting spirit since then — or they may not have, if you ask your average trans-Saharan jihadist — but we did not elect Barack Obama president of these United States out of a surplus of courage, either. It’s not that we should send the 101st Airborne to les banlieues, rather that we should be the sort of country that makes it matter when we say “you’ve got a friend.” When it comes to jihad, there are no obvious solutions, but there are some obvious non-solutions, and an impromptu James Taylor concert surely is one of them.


Dennis said...

It was also flippant, frivolous, shallow and duplicitous as well. If one cannot see this then one needs to get a job in the Obama administration or as a democrat troll.
And one wonders why I have little use for academe that produces graduates with little understanding of the concept that words have meaning and are meant to communicate. Here the communication is so callow that it makes one ashamed to be represented by these popinjays.

Anonymous said...

Obama is a boomer. Born in '61. Trust me we gen X ers were also going WTF?!?

Ares Olympus said...

I see now why life is so tough for conservatives.

Life is serious and we're always one step from oblivion from "The Enemy who does not sleep", and those other fools just don't get it.

What would be really ironic is if by 2024 America has lost its dominance by bankrupting itself and having to cut down its military by 90%, and has to rely on the United Nations to police the world.

And then Nobel Peace prize president Obama is put on UN trial and executed for Crimes against humanity for his drone assassination program.

Ignatius Acton Chesterton OCD said...

Ares, you are a fool.

I've read you wishing for a diminished Unuted States for some time now. You carry on about the dangers of reckless deficit spending. Meanwhile, you advocate we "do something" about "climate change," the proposals of which call for intervention that will economically emasculate and bankrupt our nation... for no gain whatsoever.

Like Obama, you mock people who are concerned about Islamist terrorists who have openly declared war on us, while focusing all your energy on conservative Americans as the true enemy. Foreign enemies are to be prosecuted as criminals, while the "loyal opposition" is to be mowed down like dogs.

If John Kerry's your man, then you've written all you need to write.

You are trite, snide, and wildly unpersuasive. You've given the reasons your comments are not worthy of consideration, stating again and again that nothing matters, everything is subjective, and truth relative. Where do we go from there?

Who are you going to defend next? Joe Biden?

I see why life is so difficult for people like you -- you mock others for their beliefs, while offering precious few of your own. You write a great many words to sey nothing, punctuated with Wikipedia references... as though we're all schoolchildren, needing your guidance.

You probably hope for Obama's demise for "crimes against humanity," while never once considering the real impact of the UN running the planet. Then again, I suppose UN rule sounds romantic to you, so you may claim your title as a "citizen for the world." Yeah, Obama tried that in Berlin, before his Nobel Peace Prize. Pardon me while I puke.

And you probably thought it was "really neat" that Kerry found a way to be in Bob Kraft's box at the New England NFL playoff game tonight. A true leader, Democrat, foreign policy master, and man of the people. That's right, billionaire (by marriage) Secretary of State, John F. Kerry... Jedi knight and friend of James Taylor.

Larry Sheldon said...

I'm sorry. America embrasures herself--nothing can dilute the truth of that.
The government that is in place was freely selected (maybe for the last time) by the American people. The possibilities and policies of that government have been predictable since the 1900's.
We have nobody to blame but ourselves.

Ares Olympus said...

Ignatius Acton Chesterton OCD... "I see why life is so difficult for people like you -- you mock others for their beliefs, while offering precious few of your own."

Good work IAC! I see a blog needlessly mocking Kerry and offer my attempted sympathy for conservatives' plight, but alas it is mockery too. Mission not accomplished.

I apologize. Its just hard to care about tearing people down for the sake of tearing people down, apparently on the hopes someday the wool will be pulled from thes of those who can't see the truth.

I don't have any hopeful suggestions in world diplomacy.

I'm concerned about militant Islam, and I don't have any answers about that, accept to see you have to be patient, and destructive forces eventually destroy themselves if you can stay out of the way.

Right now I'm partial to the idea of "collective madness" and we're all under a spell all the time, but some times more than others.

So my goal is "discernment for truth", and my concern is to see it too easily falls into easy condemnation that doesn't illuminate in a way that promotes hope for change.

Charlie Hebdo might fall under that predicament, but I'm sure its got its good and bad like all of us.

For my school children advice, I'd go with the story of two wolves:
An old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life. "A fight is going on inside me," he said to the boy.

"It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil - he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego." He continued, "The other is good - he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you - and inside every other person, too."

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, "Which wolf will win?"

The old Cherokee simply replied, "The one you feed."

Ares Olympus said...
This comment has been removed by the author.