Huckabee Hits The Bush Administration

Mike Huckabee has decided to make a clean break with the Bush administration on foreign policy. In a speech yesterday, Huckabee supported the surge in Iraq but came out against the White House on most other foreign-policy issues, including the conduct of the war on terror:

Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee ripped the Bush administration’s war against terrorism Friday, delivering a bold and potentially risky speech that could establish the former Arkansas governor as the maverick among top Republican candidates and test his party’s loyalty to President Bush.
“This administration’s bunker mentality has been counterproductive both at home and abroad,” Huckabee said in opening a broad indictment of Bush’s style and policy.
The speech came after several top Republican candidates started distancing themselves from Bush, vowing change on such issues as illegal immigration and federal spending even as they endorsed Bush’s foreign policy.
By going much further than his rivals have in attacking Bush, Huckabee could draw attention to a campaign that’s inched up in polls in recent months but still lacks the money and organization that can compete head-on with better-known, better-financed candidates such as Rudy Giuliani, Mitt Romney and Fred Thompson.

His speech at the Center for Strategic and International Studies puts an interesting twist on Huckabee’s campaign. He’s generally been seen as the most personable candidate of the Republican flock, but perhaps he feels he’s been a little too nice. Huckabee may want to show a little flash and fire to let people know that he’s got enough flint to be a Commander in Chief.
McClatchy’s Steven Thomma believes that Huckabee wants to wrest the “maverick” role away from John McCain, and perhaps some of the straight talk label as well. McCain himself has criticized the Bush administration on foreign policy in the past, but not quite in these terms, and he definitely doesn’t counsel closer relations with the mullahcracy in Iran. Huckabee told the CSIS yesterday that the US could turn Iran away from nuclear weapons through the promise of better relations and economic support.
We have tried that approach in the past, though, and it never works. Reagan, Bush, and Clinton all attempted outreaches to the Iranian mullahcracy, and all efforts failed. The Iranians may have seen al-Qaeda as a Wahhabi threat to its own vision of a Shi’ite Caliphate based in Teheran when it offered to assist us in beating back the Taliban and AQ in Afghanistan, but they have no interest in helping us protect our assets in the Middle East or anywhere else. The fantasy that 9/11 represented a unique opportunity to engage with the Iranian mullahs is just that — fantasy. They want Israel destroyed and the US completely out of southwest Asia and North Africa. That’s their end game, and it won’t change until the Iranian people finally jettison the mullahcracy and replace it with responsible self-government.
His criticism grew especially harsh when he discussed the aborted mission into Pakistan that intended on capturing Ayman al-Zawahiri. Donald Rumsfeld called it off when the support group got so large that it would have required coordination with the Pakistani government. Huckabee promised that he would not have let his Defense Secretary make that call had Huckabee been President. “Did the President even know about it? … When I’m president, I will make the final call on such action, not my secretary of defense.” That one will sting.
We’ll see if it gains Huckabee anything other than headlines. In a general election, these positions would almost certainly boost a GOP nominee. In the primaries, though, it may have the opposite effect.

49 thoughts on “Huckabee Hits The Bush Administration”

  1. So Huckabee wants to micro-manage the war? I agree with CE that appeasement with thugs (ie, Iran) never has worked and won’t work. A tribal society, which Iran has reverted to, follows the one who is the biggest bully. If we’re lucky, it’s a benevolent bully. This is extremely rare.
    As for throwing out the US from the ME, even if we’re thrown out from there, the caliphate mentality will decide we’re weak and keep coming after us. The bully mindset only understands victory/defeat. Diplomacy is the luxury of safe societies.
    For those of you who want to dialogue, who will talk to whom? I’m for holding our own everywhere and doing what we can to encourage their own people to overthrow thugs.

  2. I have to say this stance from Huckabee surprises me. That is if he really means it and isn’t just trying to get some spotlight on him.
    His thoughts about having intimate dealings with Iran are so far off base. When you consider the network of terror set up by Iran that spiderwebs through Syria and on into Hamas and Hezbollah, somebody tell me HOW you can justify any relations with that country?
    And Huckabee talks about a “bunker” mentality of the Bush administration. Well, Governor Huckabee, sometimes as President of the U.S.A. you have to play with the cards dealt to you. With the U.S. committed to The Long War or the Global War on Terror, President Bush has been dealt with a whole different hand concerning potential allies in that effort. At the time, there were basically three countries whose mission matched ours: Great Britain, Australia and Poland. And we set up an alliance with them. All of the others, quite frankly, has stooped and succumbed to such dhimmification that they were scared to even lock up a muslim who committed a high crime. France, Germany, Spain, and Italy had become so infiltrated and gun shy over the islamification of Europe that they would be hard pressed to protect their own borders, let alone take on Al Qaeda in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
    And now, we’ve seen another shift. Great Britain has changed over to one of the dhimmi nations and it appears France has replaced it as more of a determined ally against Terror.
    Mr. Huckabee, things change when you actually sit in the Oval Office, sir. When it’s on your head if the U.S. is attacked again by terrorists, your view of “global interaction and negotiations” will take on a whole new light. When you are trying to build a world of safety for your Land’s people, are you seriously trying to tell me you’d sit down and break bread with a nation that has threatened the annihilation of an entire country and who is six months from arming missiles with nuclear warheads? If so, I can only pray you don’t get the nomination.

  3. Is Huck looking for Buchanan isolationist voters or dialog and appeasement Republicans or the damn the torpedos lets invade Pakistan vote. I doubt he will get much with this combination of attack friends and make peace through weakness and tribute with hostile nations. The Nancy Pelosi wing of the Republican party is pretty small.
    The Huck surge fizzles.

  4. Huckabee displays that phenomenon of the marginal candidate who wants it so bad that he reaches a point where he sees there’s no hope other than to go nuclear. In effect, he’s confirming that he is not fit to President, and that he’s just another desperate, groveling politician.
    And it’s a bit tiring to hear the comment about the “bunker mentality” of this President. He’s standing firm (as he should) in face of relentless enemies in front, and deranged, power-hungry back-fraggers behind.

  5. Looking for leverage in all the wrong places.
    And, Huckabee ain’t the first. “That prize” goes to Newt Gingrich.
    Meanwhile, for those who are curious, and who have not, as yet, gone to Lucianne this morning; I’d recommend TWO ARTICLES which she is headlining.
    Both deal with our gains on terror. And, the best of the two explains “Bush’s Bet.” How the CIA, not working alone, but working clandestinally, managed top break apart the terror group, formerly known as the “global jihadists.” Fragmented now. And, the head honchos; on the Pakistani part of this gamble; headed for the hills of Tora Bora. Where they are being pounded.
    You don’t hear a thing?
    Well, one of the articles at Lucianne comes from the American Thinker; with a link to the “Internet Anthropologist.” Meaning? The Internet has caches, where people who want to follow the “nitty gritty,” can.
    Similar to the sounds you don’t hear when trees fall in the forest; because you’re ear drums just are not within range …
    Doesn’t mean that America hasn’t been fighting terror BRILLIANTLY!
    Also, from a fact plucked from one of the above articles, it seems Bush decided to personally brief Hillary! Which is why she realizes the gaping yaw of her lunatic base; but she’s held steady at “not wanting to draw down our troops” in Irak.
    One thing about democracy; similar to the stuff you see here, as well. You’re gonna be meeting “across the board” opinions. Some are like the EDSEL. All toilet seat grill. Not a “pet” that gets adopted. Either.
    But you do see it!
    And, the wacky academics, who grew sloth-ful while in empowered by affirmative action; kind’a recognize that they’ve arrived at the edge of the cliff. Ain’t nowhere else to go. Because? Well, the WHIGS did it in 1860. By 1960 we had a “sexual revolution,” ushered in by a very sexy president, John F. Kennedy, who had his Irish luck run out.
    What the Bonkeys did? Similar to the over-stimulation that came with the dot.com’s; where anything with the word “computer” imbedded, was thought that it could sell …
    Got a lot of investors to discover what happens when your products just DON’T.
    Today? It’s the housing markets.
    But it’s not the stuff that’s on-going in Irak!
    So, like I said, yesterday. Bush will probably go down in history like President Polk. Even if the name doesn’t ring a bell with you, anytime you look at an American map, and you see TEXAS, and states to California … You got it. President Polk’s administration. Whether you care to remember his name. Or not.
    Oh. And, for another “piddling” detail. Under Polk? We had Zachary Taylor as the commander who eschewed uniform ediquette. Taught U.S. Grant to do the same. And, to concentrate on the battlefield. DESTINY BEACONED. Grant answered that call. And, lucky for him, though he had been ill-educated by the public school system; made it into West Point. Where he grasped advanced mathematics all on his own.
    You bet. America is still a place for individuals. And, that’s gonna be just another kick in the pants, ahead, for the affirmative action crowd.

  6. I believe that Gov. Huckabee and to a lesser extent the rest of the GOP candidates are skating on thin ice. Similar to the gamble that the democrats are taking. If six months from now, things are looking up in Iraq, the new government is taking hold, and al Qaida has its head handed to them (no pun intended); then running away from the President is going to look extremely foolish.
    I believe that is exactly what is going to happen and then all the guys (and girl) who want the job of CinC will come running back and try to get as close to President Bush’s policies as they can.
    What is the old saying, success has many fathers but failure only one.

  7. The GOP has a number of qualified, intelligent, thoughtful candidates seeking the nomination. Huckabee is one.
    The GOP sees that they need to run a more rational candidate this time but remain committed to the policies of the jingoistic warmonger they ran last time, who has been so successful at promoting their fundo fascist agenda of race/class/religious separation and hatred.

  8. reddog said

    The GOP sees that they need to run a more rational candidate this time but remain committed to the policies of the jingoistic warmonger they ran last time, who has been so successful at promoting their fundo fascist agenda of race/class/religious separation and hatred.

    You mean the jingoistic warmonger who said the same as William Jefferson Clinton, John Kerry, Nancy Pelosi, Howard Dean, et altera?
    The only difference is that the jingoistic warmonger acted; he wasn’t a paper tiger.

  9. I had thought Huckabee was going to be the one I would work for to get him elected. Knowing that he is from Arkansas and had to clean up after the Clintons made him appealing…also, I know what a great effort he made and achieved to get himself healthy (I see him from time to time when he comes to the Cooper Clinic in Dallas where he learned how to take care of himself and lose a bunch of weight).
    After reading this post, count me out. He has been so sane until this time.
    What’s up with Huck?

  10. I’ve always thought Huckabee was the most appealing of the Republican candidates and the one most likely to pose a real threat to the Dems in the fall. This confirms it.

  11. Mike Huckabee has done some things right (supporting Bush and the war) and several things wrong (acting like Chuck Hagel) this is a stupid move in the primaries. He might be considered for VP but not if he makes dumb comments like this.

  12. We had a President that made all the calls in a war from Washington. I believe those calls left Haiphon and Hanoi alone, allowing the flow of weapons and supplies to reach those who were killing our soldiers. Presidents should let the people they hire do the job they hire them to do. Obiviously Huckabee is not ready for the increase in pay grade.

  13. Huckabee may have brought himself down to fighting weight, but his new, improved “lean and hungry look” (Cassius ambition, anyone?)has negatively affected his judgment. Huckabee is second-tier and on his way out.

  14. I think Mr. Huckabee is going after the “Ron Paul” wing of the Republican party. We’ll have to wait and see, but I predict Dr. Phil would ask, “How’s that working for you, Mike?”
    I may be nuts, but I expect someone running in a Republican primary to refine his criticisms of Democrats and explain why folks should vote for Republicans in general and himself in particular.

  15. Republican candidates who try to differentiate themselves from Bush on foreign policy to appease “moderates” will be in for a rude awakening in the primaries. Whatever his faults, many Republicans still see him as a leader with the courage to take on challenges others (R’s and D’s) kicked down the road. If you are going to run away from Bush, the way to do it is to first show him respect, then discuss the conservative principles you will follow in office regarding spending and restraining the growth of government, as well as a workable policy to address illegal immigration that doesn’t reward lawbreakers. It seems to me that the Republican frontrunners have studiously avoided mentioning the president at all, which I think is the wisest policy. Let him do his job while you apply for the opportunity to do it better.

  16. I suppose it goes with the territory, but it’s especially true in Huckabee’s case. Nobody has a higher opinion of Huckabee than Huckabee. There must be something in the water down in Hope, Arkansas–something best avoided.

  17. Before anything he says matters, first, he has to get elected.
    Huckabee has to break into first tier to even have a shot.
    So far he hasn’t been able to make it, and so he has to keep getting noticed. That’s the whole point of the speech. Pushing the envelope here puts the others on the defensive. When asked about his speech, they either get to agree with him or defend Bush (not anybody’s first choice).
    There are many different ways to engage with Iran. Nothing that has been tried has proven terribly effective yet. It may be that nothing will work, and something more forceful may be necessary (a combination of carrots and sticks). One speech does not define the policy.
    Huckabee has earned the regard of more than a few Democrats in Arkansas simply by demonstrating self-discipline in losing weight without getting his stomach stapled.
    That demonstration of intestinal fortitude will sit well the voting public (pun intended). It’s easier to respect someone like than someone who can’t control their appetites (of whatever kind).
    Don’t write him off.

  18. The speech was a good rehash of a lot of obvious things.
    He will rue the day with his harsh criticism of the bush admin through the virtue of 20/20 hindsight. Rudy will probably eat his lunch with the “Iran just needs a hug”.
    What he has certainly done is give the dems lots of talking points. We’ll be seeing them in ad’s very soon.

  19. I just wrote a blog at Red State about Huckabee’s speech:
    http://www.redstate.com/blogs/anteater/2007/sep/29/a_favorable_analysis_of_mike_huckabees_foreign_policy
    In a nutshell, here is what I think of Huckabee’s speech:
    1. He is right on Iraq, saying that we will definitely stay until we have victory.
    2. He is right to point out the breeding ground of potential terrorism in Europe, as well as Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. He is also right to call for a continued alliance with Pakistan.
    3. On Iran, he has committed to preventing Iran from going nuclear. He refuses to take military action off the table; rather, he says we should pursue all other (diplomatic) options before we take military action. This includes talking with Iran’s neighbors to isolate Iran.
    4. He encourages raising levels of Defense spending to Reagan levels (6%).
    The news article that Capt. Ed pointed to does not fully convey the ideas that Huckabee presented in his speech. Newt Gingrich said that in order for a candidate to win against Hillary, he must represent some form of change and make a clean break with the current administration. Rhetorically, Huckabee is differentiating himself a bit from the current administration. However, in practice, I believe Huckabee would have a foreign policy that is as tough as Bush’s.

  20. Huckabee told the CSIS yesterday that the US could turn Iran away from nuclear weapons through the promise of better relations and economic support.
    Allow me to translate: I am so clueless about foreign relations and the madmen in charge of Iran’s government I should not be allowed to even run for president.

  21. “To contain Iran, it is essential to win in Iraq. When we overthrew Saddam Hussein, who functioned as a bulwark against Iran, we upset the balance of power in the region. We must stabilize and strengthen Iraq not just for their security, but the security of the entire region, and our own security. We can’t allow Iran to push the power of its theocracy westward into, and then beyond, Iraq.”
    “Another way to contain Iran is through diplomacy, while never taking the military option off the table. We must be as diplomatically aggressive as we have been militarily aggressive since 9/11.”
    “To show how seriously we take the Iranian threat here at home, we must encourage the burgeoning movement of our states and private entities like the Teamsters to divest their pension funds of Iran-related assets. We should put more of our money where our mouth is.”
    “With the change in France from Chirac to Sarkozy, we now have an ally much more willing to join us in taking on Iran, and we should take full advantage of this new opportunity to explore fresh initiatives. I agree with President Sarkozy’s statement at the U. N. earlier this week that ‘We can only resolve this crisis by combining firmness with dialogue.”
    “The bottom line is this: Iran is a regional threat to the balance of power in the Middle and Near East; Al Qaeda is an existential threat to the United States. I know we can’t live with Al Qaeda, but there’s a chance that we can live with a domesticated Iran. There is no way Iran will acquire nuclear weapons on my watch. But before I look parents in the eye to explain why I had to put their son’s or daughter’s life at risk in military action against Iran, I want to know that I have done everything possible to avoid that conflict.”
    Did I miss the part about the group hug? Or are you guys just advocating bombing Iran back to the stone age without attempting anything else first?
    The Dems don’t need talking points from anyone, they’ve got MoveOn.org and Media Matters to handle the smear tactics.
    Of course hindsight is 20/20, what do you think is going on during these primary stumps? Candidates are looking at failures or approaches that haven’t worked and are saying “This is how we should be doing that.” That’s electioneering.
    And unless Rudy “pro-abortion, anti-gun, pro-illegal-imigration” can find a way to bring his New York record to bear on every single campaign issue, I don’t think he’ll be quite the juggernaut everyone thinks he’ll be.

  22. Rudy’s major hurdle is health.
    He has what Lincoln knew he had, back in 1860. When Lincoln entered the republican “teepee” in Decatur, in 4th place. But the other three? Couldn’t wrest the nomination. So, a day later, the politicians, who know they’re out of work if they pick poorly; picked Lincoln.
    Lincoln had NATIONAL appeal.
    Some people think the “old anti-abortion” stanza makes them a more lovable candidate. But if people didn’t like abortions, they wouldn’t be chosen. It would be like spinach.
    While jailing doctors and putting women into prison for “touching their bodies,” is one of the weaker arguments in a modern society.
    And, no matter what politicians “promise you,” they’ll only go as far as they have to go … in order to get elected. I do believe Bush ran on an anti-abortion plank. ANd, then he thought he’d put Harriet Miers up on the bench.
    While “up on the bench,” we’ve got a pretty unimpressive court, so far. Where Clinton’s two picks are lost among the mediocre “whole.”
    Again, if Rudy is the candidate? There will be some who will stay home. Others? Will vote for Pat Buchanan, if he does another run. These things are just spit in the ocean. Doesn’t even change the water’s level.
    One of Rudy’s strengths is that he knows how to RUN AN ORGANIZATION! He knows how to hire others to run agencies. ANd, then he holds them all ACCOUNTABLE.
    We haven’t seen that.
    It was Bush’s weakest card.
    After Bush leaves office; and I think he’ll have a record like PResident Polk. (Which brought us Texas to California; while his name is forgotten. WHile Abraham Lincoln, winning a HOUSE seat, in 1848, tore into him. And, then he went home. Only to be screwed by the WHIG insiders) … still was at a pivotal time.
    Yeah. Ulysses S. Grant looked back at his service under Zachary Taylor, and complained. If we didn’t have the Civil War, I’m sure the history books would be full of the carnage. Why? Well, Santana, and the Mexicans, had a 2 to 1 advantage. They also knew the terrain. And, maps at the time weren’t necessarily accurate. But Grant got his hands on one!)
    the other thing to consider: In what condition is the world’s map, when Bush exits on January 20, 2009?
    Seems we’ve done wonders cleaning OUT Saddam. And, letting the arabs figure it out for themselves. We’re not forcing them into any particular hand: But one. End the terrorism!
    How did Bush bring this home? By going there to fight, it did work like fly paper. And, brought a lot of beasts out. To terrorize.
    Where are they now?
    On the run in Pakistan.
    Being pounded in Tora Bora.
    Neighborhoods in Irak are getting safer. I think we’re down to 3 bad neighborhoods, left. While the sunnis, who chose not to cooperate. Paid the price.
    Syria? Now, you really want me to comment about what just happened to Assad? Or are you just waiting for him to come on stage and sing ‘soprano?’
    The midget in iran? Okay. He goes to the UN. And, then he visits columbia. So what? He’s still got to deal with what happened to syria.
    And, he may have to deal with his own angry mullahs.
    People make a big mistake if they think stuff doesn’t change.
    Heck, the universe of telephones changed. From “party lines.” And, operators who connected ya. To phones that hung on your kitchen walls.
    Today? Phones ring in your pants pockets. You can answer them, anywhere. And, to do so while driving? Which isn’t safe? Can lead to a ticket.
    Everything that changes gets changes to go along with same.
    How the Bonkeys will deal with their bets, I have no idea.
    But watching senators “swish” about;
    This, too, may face the Internet. In ways the old system can’t add a thing to make them regain stature.
    Once you lose stature, it’s just a matter of time.
    Especially “stature” built on deviations from the norm. Or what I call “affirmative action.” I think it’s gonna go like tie-dyed tee-shirts.

  23. I agree with postaldog. If you’ve read the speech in its entirety and still think that Huckabee is a baffoon, a turncoat or some kind of naive dove, then read it again – slowly if you have to.
    What Huckabee is advocating vis a vis Iran is not a policy of diplomacy only, but rather a two-pronged approach. At the risk of being redundant, here’s a key quote from the speech that postaldog cited earlier:
    “Another way to contain Iran is through diplomacy, while never taking the military option off the table. We must be as diplomatically aggressive as we have been militarily aggressive since 9/11.”
    Another way to contain Iran – not the only way. Diplomacy is not just “making nice” – aggressive diplomacy is what Reagan engaged in with Gorbachev at Reykjavik. And it worked. Will it work with Iran? Maybe not. But bear in mind that the Iranians are a sophisticated people who have an affinity towards Americans, even if their current government doesn’t. “Bomb, bomb, bomb – bomb, bomb Iran” may be a catchy tune, but it’s a pretty short-sighted foreign policy.
    By faulting Huckabee for his criticism of Bush, are you implying that no mistakes were made in the prosecution of the war in Iraq? Even McCain hasn’t taken that position, yet like Huckabee, he is a strong supporter of the Surge. If the Surge works, it still won’t negate the fact that the outcome could have been reached a lot sooner if mistakes along the way hadn’t been made.
    I’ve been a supporter of Huckabee for some time now, but I’ve felt as a governor he might not have the grasp of foreign policy needed for the leader of the Free World. The CSIS speech changed that for me. Read it again – it’s not a 30-second sound bite you can make a snap judgment about.

  24. Maybe Huckabee thinks his hot-tempered looking cracks will make him look like a hot-shot cowboy, and since that is the way the MSM has sought to portray President Bush, that it will make himself appear more of what the Conservatives are looking for.
    But in my book, President Bush is a mighty cautious citizen.
    That may be interpreted by some as “bunkered down” – but it hardly means we are looking for some guy who is likely to explode from self-combustion.
    I won’t vote for a guy who “claims” to be a Christian while promoting higher tax and spend programs, and who criticizes a successful military campagin in 20/20 hindsight in a wise-crack that ignores the situation in the (nuclear club member) Pakistani political structure.
    From a guy who signs on for taxing NURSING HOME BEDS at $5-6 per day, He ain’t even reminding me of what I am looking for. Sounds like someone else who is more likely to bomb asperin factories than to think clearly, just to remove an unflattering headline!
    NO THANKS!

  25. Uhhmmm…
    Rudi is a no go, too.
    I won’t vote for a man for ELECTED OFFICE who DISRESPECTS the ELECTION PROCESS.
    And this is consistent with a lot of Rudi’s other character failings.
    Didn’t anyone else see him in 2002, after Bloomburg’s election, when NYC gave Rudi an award for his excellent work regarding 9/11, etc, et al, before an INTERNATIONAL TV audience, when he finally responded to the weeks of cheers from fans in h is audiences who kept chanting some refrain about replacing Rudi by appointment back to the office of Mayor, instead of rec eiving the Bloomburg ELECTION – by saying, ever so shyly and humbly, “Well… if the people really WANT me…whu? wha? wha?” [someone was kicking him in the ankle below the view of the camera, very fiercely, and h e was glaring at them as he said those last questioning remarks.]
    A STUNNED moment of silence followed and everyone proceeded as if he had said NOTHING AT ALL, and NOBODY has mentioned it since his “public apology” 2 weeks later, during which time lots of media talking heads, including Sean Hannity, raked him pretty harshly for the pure stupidity.
    Well, it was a sorry sorry sorry DIM style apology, like “well, if YOU were offended, SO-REEEEE!” type thingy – but everyone quickly agreed it WAS an “apology” (MY grandmother wouldn’t have accepted it, you know what I mean, folks?????) and they all VERY EMBARRASEDLY DROPPED the subject like a hot potato.
    There have been 4 or 5 issues he has commented on since then that I was like, Gee, Rudi, why doesn’t someone ask, “why, if that is the way you feel about so-and-so, what on earth were YOU thinking when YOU pulled THIS $#%$ stunt in front of INTERNATIONAL TELEVISION NEWS cameras???”
    AND THE CRICKETS CHIRP….on and on….[to the tune of “The Strawberry Blonde”, “and the band played on…”]
    Piled on the on-the-job adultery, 3 wives, like Newt, 2 and 3 are the mistresses who broke up 1 and 2…
    Not even a consideration.
    NEVER heard any of the preachers use this for politics, just majopr choices in their own lives, when they been shown to expect an answer from God for a solution to somelife-changing occassion, over and over and over, they say, God says to Satan, you first.
    In other words, Satan gets to send you a life-destroying choice, first, so you can show God if you are willing to grab a shiny handfull of sparkly tin spangles, or if you are willing to hang on, wait patiently and trustingly, to learn what for sure is the solution God Himself is sending you. Which is usually at least, offer Number 2.
    Rudi ain’t the real thing.
    Samuel Adams – It is a very great mistake to imagine that the object of loyalty is the authority and interest of one individual man, however dignified by the applause or enriched by the success of popular actions.
    Clarence S. Darrow – Liberty is the most jealous and exacting mistress that can beguile the brain and soul of man. From him who will not give her all, she will have nothing. She knows that his pretended love serves but to betray. But when once the fierce heat of her quenchless, lustrous eyes have burned into the victim’s heart, he will know no other smile but hers.
    Henry Clay – Of all the properties which belong to honorable men, not one is so highly prized as that of character.
    John Adams – Because power corrupts, society’s demands for moral authority and character increase as the importance of the position increases.
    He who is void of virtuous attachments in private life is, or very soon will be, void of all regard for his country. There is seldom an instance of a man guilty of betraying his country, who had not before lost the feeling of moral obligations in his private connections.
    – Samuel Adams
    In his address of 19 September 1796, given as he prepared to leave office, President George Washington spoke about the importance of morality to the country’s well-being: Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, Religion and Morality are indispensable supports…. And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion…. Can it be that Providence has not connected the permanent felicity of a Nation with its virtue?
    I hope I shall possess firmness and virtue enough to maintain what I consider the most enviable of all titles, the character of an honest man.
    – George Washington
    Associate yourself with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation for ’tis better to be alone than in bad company.
    – George Washington
    Labor to keep alive in your breast that little spark of celestial fire called conscience.
    – George Washington
    Patrick Henry – …Virtue, morality, and religion. This is the armor, my friend, and this alone that renders us invincible. These are the tactics we should study. If we lose these, we are conquered, fallen indeed…so long as our manners and principles remain sound, there is no danger.
    Patrick Henry – Bad men cannot make good citizens. It is when a people forget God that tyrants forge their chains. A vitiated state of morals, a corrupted public conscience, is incompatible with freedom. No free government, or the blessings of liberty, can be preserved to any people but by a firm adherence to justice, moderation, temperance, frugality, and virtue; and by a frequent recurrence to fundamental principles.
    Samuel Butler – Authority intoxicates, And makes mere sots of magistrates; The fumes of it invade the brain, And make men giddy, proud and vain.
    Samuel Adams – He therefore is the truest friend to the liberty of his country who tries most to promote its virtue, and who, so far as his power and influence extend, will not suffer a man to be chosen into any office of power and trust who is not a wise and virtuous man…The sum of all is, if we would most truly enjoy this gift of Heaven, let us become a virtuous people.
    Samuel Adams – The liberties of our country, the freedom of our civil Constitution, are worth defending at all hazards; and it is our duty to defend them against all attacks. We have received them as a fair inheritance from our worthy ancestors: they purchased them for us with toil and danger and expense of treasure and blood, and transmitted them to us with care and diligence. It will bring an everlasting mark of infamy on the present generation, enlightened as it is, if we should suffer them to be wrested from us by violence without a struggle, or to be cheated out of them by the artifices of false and designing men.
    Samuel Adams – A general dissolution of the principles and manners will more surely overthrow the liberties of America than the whole force of the common enemy…. While the people are virtuous they cannot be subdued; but once they lose their virtue, they will be ready to surrender their liberties to the first external or internal invader…. If virtue and knowledge are diffused among the people, they will never be enslaved. This will be their great security.
    If ever time should come, when vain and aspiring men shall possess the highest seats in Government, our country will stand in need of its experienced patriots to prevent its ruin.
    Clear out the garbage.
    Remove the Tares, and let us see the WHEAT!

  26. Huckabee told the CSIS yesterday that the US could turn Iran away from nuclear weapons through the promise of better relations and economic support.

    No one who believes Iran will be turned away from nukes by “better relations and economic support” has any right to be considered possible presidential material.
    Huckabee’s trying to be a contrarian in order to pump up a campaign that’s going nowhere. Is embracing the dark side worth it, Huckabee? An idiot, bonehead move. He should just pack it in.

  27. Easy to take potshots at the Commander in chief from the bleachers, also stupid when you have no idea of the intel he is seeing and what is going on behind the scenes. This is pandering no different than the Dems “war is lost” and I give Huckleberry just as much credit as them
    If he wants to improve his chances of getting my vote he would be asking whats’ with Hillary and Norman Hsu’s Chicom money?
    Hows’ come the Dem party all of the sudden turned on their anti-war base and why have they been siding with the enemies of America?
    The Rep that gets my vote will attack the real enemies, the dems, not become one of them.
    Lost any chance of my vote, I want full frontal assualt on the PIAPS anything else is useless babbling. W. is not on any ticket. The same goes for Newt. If ya aint got the balls to get in then shut the hell up and watch. We have a war on, Dems to fight and pissants sittin it out and takin potshots from the sidelines are just well…. Pissants!

  28. This is pandering no different than the Dems “war is lost” and I give Huckleberry just as much credit as them
    Quote from CSIS Speech:
    “I have supported and continue to support the surge. Given that the surge reached full strength only in mid-June, the gains in security have been significant, but remain fragile and tenuous. The National Intelligence Estimate released in late August, which represents the consensus of all our intelligence agencies, made it clear that if we withdraw too early or too quickly, these hard-won gains will be lost and the cycle of violence will spiral upward. Now is not the moment to lose heart or lose faith, too much has been sacrificed and too much is at stake. When has an army ever turned the tide and then given up? War is about will. Whoever gives up loses. We can’t afford to lose. How we handle this will determine the kind of world our grandchildren will live in – or die in.
    I hate to sound like a broken record, but I’ll say it again – read the speech!

  29. “Saying American foreign policy needs a change in tone and attitude, or an opening up and a reaching out, is as obvious as saying O. J. Simpson might be having a bad month. This Administration’s bunker mentality has been counter-productive both at home and abroad.”
    Way to go Huck! Strong stuff. Yes, lets belittle the last six years because that will certainly endear me to the repubs. The OJ part was a nice tie in.
    “Normally we speak to Iran only indirectly, through the Swiss embassy in Tehran. Our recent direct negotiations about Iraq have been very narrowly-focused and not productive because we are not exploring the full range of issues. We have valuable incentives to offer Iran in exchange for helping to stabilize Iraq; not supporting the Taliban, Hamas, and Hezbollah; and abandoning its nuclear ambitions – trade and economic assistance, full diplomatic relations and security guarantees. While there can be no rational dealing with Al Qaeda, Iran is a nation state looking for regional power, it plays the normal power politics that we understand and can skillfully pursue, and we have substantive issues to negotiate with them.”
    Further proof I’m not yet ready for prime time. Even though Iran has renounced the West and rallies the call for violent jihad, I think because of my Divinity degree I can hug them back in line. I’ll talk about my degree later in my speech about the obvious, posing as some deep insight.
    “The wisdom of Sun-tzu from almost 2,500 years ago is relevant today: keep your friends close and your enemies closer. We haven’t had diplomatic relations with Iran in almost thirty years, my whole adult life. A lot of good it’s done us! Putting this in human terms, all of us know that when we stop talking to a parent or a sibling or a friend, it’s impossible to accomplish anything, impossible to resolve differences and move the relationship forward. The same is true for countries.”
    Can’t we all just get along! Come on everybody lets have dinner at the table instead around the TV. What a bunch of blather. Group hug!!!!
    “When we first invaded Afghanistan, Iran helped us, especially in our dealings with their allies, the Northern Alliance. They wanted to join us in fighting Al Qaeda, hoping this would lead to better U. S.-Iranian relations. The CIA and the State Department supported this partnership, but some in the White House and Pentagon did not. When President Bush included Iran in his Axis of Evil, everything went downhill fast. As the only presidential candidate with a theology degree, along with years of political experience, I know that theology is black and white, but politics is not.”
    Oh yeah, if you don’t think I’m delusional this should prove it–Iran really did want to help us to have a better relationship. Group hug!!!
    This entire speech was a rehash of every speech the Bush white house has given one time or another over the last six years. The only difference is concerning Iran. Unlike Huck the Bush team has rightly decided that the time for listening to Iran’s BS these last 30 years is over. Unless Iran comes clean on everything it’s over for them. Even the French now realize this. Huck wants to do, on the governmental scale, what Columbia did on the college level.
    As I said some of his stuff will end up in dem ads. Good job Huck!
    “When we let bin Laden escape at Tora Bora in December 2001, and he fled Afghanistan into Pakistan, we played Brer Fox to his Brer Rabbit.

  30. Wow, calling a minister unchristian that’s a bit of a reach. Gov. Huckabee is not a tax and spend liberal, he cut taxes 94 with a democratic controlled state legislature. The only substantive increases were to fund constitutionally underfunded schools (kind of important) and repair the country’s worst highway system (also kind of important in an agriculture state). And both of those increases passed with 80% voter approval. Also, his fiscal responsibility left the state with a budget surplus of $850 million.
    Still not getting the group hug stuff. What do you think global politics is? We’ve been excoriated world wide for our unilateral moves in this war. We can’t just go around launching war on country after country. We don’t have the military personel or the public support for it. Read the polls. We need to find ways to affect these serious situations that are more effective than we have in the past.
    That’s not a case of criticizing the war with 20/20 hindsight. The governor has been solidly behind Bush and the surge and remains so. He is pointing out, and rightfully so, mistakes that were made and ways to avoid them in the future. That’s how we evolve and improve. That’s what we look for in a leader, someone who learns from the past and seeks to not repeat the same mistakes.
    Gov. Huckabee is not in the business of bashing Republicans like, say, Mitt Romney. He has repeatedly complained that debates and interviews focus almost exclusively on the war and immigration and ignore other important issues like health care and education.
    Again, I doubt the Dems are sitting there going, “Ooh, look what Mike Huckabee said, let’s put that in an ad.” Instead, and unlike the defeatest Dems, he wishes to take a Reagan-esque stance in foreign policy where he advocates peaceful negotiations with the threat of military force as leverage. It worked before.

  31. I applaud Governor Huckabee for taking a stand against the Bush administrations policy failures in Iraq and the middle east. Its about time a Republican had the courage to stand up and state the obvious. I thought Governor Huckabee’s foreign policy speech was right on the mark and he explained everything in such detail, if only President Bush took the time to explain to the American people the finer details of the war on terror. We would have a far less angry America.
    Governor Huckabee is the only candidate who has a grasp on the issues.You all who are cutting apart his speech are really taking the whole thing out of context and putting your own spin on it.Nothing like a bunch of arm chair foreign policy people to mess up the context of a fabulous speech…
    Governor Huckabee’s speech was the best I have ever heard on the subject and his leadership and courage will win him the Republican nomination..

  32. Wow, calling a minister unchristian that’s a bit of a reach.
    Not always (Jimmy Swaggart, Jim Bakker and Ted Haggard come to mind), but in Mike Huckabee’s case it’s an accusation that’s totally unfounded. Whether you like or dislike his policies (and I happen to like them), this is a man of utmost integrity.
    I had the good fortune of meeting Mike Huckabee back in July (for my impressions, see the post Meeting Mike Huckabee).
    Postaldog set the record straight on Governor Huckabee’s fiscal record, and Lisa made some very good points about taking his CSIS speech in its totality and not out of context. He’s the first candidate that I know of who’s taken the time and effort to lay out his foreign policy in a one-hour speech before a Washington think tank. That takes a lot of courage.
    But that shouldn’t surprise anyone; courage is a hallmark of the Huckabee campaign. Whether it’s supporting the Fair Tax or exploring innovative approaches to education and health care, Mike Huckabee doesn’t take the safe path, sticking his finger in the air to test the political wind at any given moment. This is a man who thinks outside the box, which is what this country desperately needs.

  33. Sounds like it was a good speach and Huckleberry is a conservative with some good Ideas (fair tax) I still say its’ a cheap shot ala the Dems to arm chair quarterback a foreign policy that is so largely successful that we are killing Terrorists in their on lands and enlisting their fellows to do so.
    I’m tired of bashing Bush to gain favor with voters when no-one has the intel he has . Hell he can barely defend himself on some of this stuff (NSA wire tapping) because to do so would give away the program. Maybe same with regard to Iraq and Iran.
    The dems know this and shamelessly use it to their advantage seems some Repubs are too dumb to figure that out.
    Attack the Dems not your commander in chief or own party. Then you’ll get my vote and money.

  34. I appreciate your feelings dhunter, but I think you’re reading too much into Ed’s post. If you get the chance read the transcript of Huck’s speech, I didn’t get the impression that he was attacking Bush or the surge.
    He’s campaigning for president not head cheerleader for the current president. He’s expected to offer thoughts and insight into national and international affairs to give voters a chance to decide whether to vote for him.
    I see where your position is now. I only hope that you keep an open mind during these primary stumps. Give Huck a chance, he’s the only true conservative in the race.

  35. Postaldog,
    I will give them all a chance and will crawl across broken glass with both hands holding my nose to vote against Monicas’ boyfriends wife-(she who must not be named)
    However, I want someone to show me how they are going to take on the Clintoon double duo not just give them a pass as everyone else does and waltz in by bashing republicans.
    I do like the fair tax and term limits, if 8 is enough for Pres. 48 is far too long for the likes of KKK Byrd. Chances of either getting done???

  36. I won’t vote for a guy who “claims” to be a Christian while promoting higher tax and spend programs,
    “Borrow and Spend” programs with no plan of how to pay back the bill you rack up is definitely more “Christian”, eh?

  37. Curious Texan, Postaldog, Lisa et al,
    I will support whomever is the nominee.
    I hope it is Rudy.
    I have read the speech three times. I’m sorry to say it is first and foremost an attack on George Bush and the White House approach to the war on terror. It is a 20/20 hindsight afforded view of events in past time. As to the broad speech, excluding the attacks, it is a rehash of everything that has been said by admin officials over the last six years as battlefield options ebbed and flowed. If anyone thinks that war is fought with a rigid plan they know little of warfare.
    Anyone who has been following the war on terror, the tactics, the possible choices etc has ruminated about everything Huck has said. What he is saying loud and clear is he will do nothing in the near future in regards to Iran as he attempts to walk another dead end with Iran through talking and hugging. He will get b-slapped like every other European who has tried the same. We all know what the definition of insanity is.
    Iran is getting the bomb.
    The minister needs to deal with that right now. That’s why I found his speech to be rehashed blather stating the obvious.
    But screw my opinion–the only opinion that counts in elections are the votes. If he gets the nomination I’ll vote for him but in the interim I’ll be voting for Rudy.

  38. “At the time, there were basically three countries whose mission matched ours: Great Britain, Australia and Poland.”
    No five countries you Blustering bullshitter.
    “And we set up an alliance with them. All of the others, quite frankly, has stooped and succumbed to such dhimmification that they were scared to even lock up a muslim who committed a high crime. France, Germany, Spain, and Italy had become so infiltrated and gun shy over the islamification of Europe that they would be hard pressed to protect their own borders”
    No dipshit SPAIN AND ITALY BOTH SUPPORTED OUR IRAQNAM FOLLY – they did wise up LATER…..but you are a liar and historical revisionist to claim that both Spain and Italy did not support the Chimp’s illegal war in the beginning.
    step up to the plate – don’t be a pussy and re-write historical facts chump.

  39. BTW God bless Huckabee – for calling a pig’s ear and fucking goddam ear and not a puppydog, candy balloon and iraqnam childern kissing US soldiersbull-fuckingshit purse.
    this liberal will glading vote for that conservative over Billary.

  40. Benj sayeth:
    “I had thought Huckabee was going to be the one I would work for to get him elected. Knowing that he is from Arkansas and had to clean up after the Clintons made him appealing…also, I know what a great effort he made and achieved to get himself healthy (I see him from time to time when he comes to the Cooper Clinic in Dallas where he learned how to take care of himself and lose a bunch of weight).
    After reading this post, count me out. He has been so sane until this time.
    What’s up with Huck?”
    ………look up the definition of Sanity Sherlock – and tell me Iraqnam (i.e. that “staying the course”)will have an outcome that is different this year or next year or the year after or two years after or three years after or four years after or five years after or six years after or seven years after or eight years after ………..(ad nauseum – 1000 yrs after/etc).from that of the expected last year or the year before or the year year before……..etc…
    wake the fuck up Rip Van Winkle.

  41. Wow, lot of hatred in here. After reading the speech once, then reading these posts, then reading it again I just gotta say I think some peeps are missing the big picture. I think Mike is “attacking” not just the last 6 years of war but the last 35 yrs of bungling in the middle east. The larger issue here is yes, we got some problems there. Yes, we are fighting to keep an area stable by particpating in a region-wide conflict with players from every other bordering country. Why are we there? Why can’t we tell them to go to hell and let the region tear itself apart? Because we need them on speaking terms with us. They are getting money not just from us, but from every other civilized nation. Re-read the speech. We want less extreme Islamicism exported? Get the world off of oil.
    What impresses me is how he acknowledges the fact that we as the USA are the the only ones with the ability to develop and implement an alternative energy source that will take “Big Oil” (gasps from the liberals) and make it superfluous to the 21st century. We Introduced Oil. We introduced Nuc power. We introduced HHO. Why are we still fueling a 21st century economy with a 20th century power supply? Build more reactors, generate HHO fuel cells, adapt our economy to utilizing a true 21st century power supply and show the rest of the civilized world how to do it.
    Once we break the petroleum paradigm, there will be little or no interest in that region from the rest of the world, and those tin-pot dictators will wither and dry up like weeds with no water. Have you heard any other candidate speak at all to the reality of what the root cause is as to why we care about what happens out there? Is anyone else running a grass-roots campaign and going for election based on reason and faith rather than greed and fear? Mike, you da man!

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