Jacksonians, Wilsonians, and 9/11
Is the foreign policy coalition between Jacksonians and Wilsonians breaking up? We can only hope.
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Keith Halderman - 4/3/2006
The most interesting part of McCarthy's essay for me was his comparison of the Jacksonian explusion of the civilized Cherokee with the conflation of Iraq with al-Qaeda. This conflation during the run up to war frustrated me greatly because it just made such little sense and showed the American people to be so easily manipulated. I think it was even more important to the pro-war argument than WMDs. Fear is a strong motivator but in order to want mass killings of civilians you have to be very angry. The conclusion I draw from the article is that the Jacksonians are not very smart.
David T. Beito - 3/30/2006
I take hope from any division on this most especially because it will create an opening for people to question their premises.
Jesse Walker - 3/30/2006
I'd prefer the Jacksonians to the Wilsonians any day, Grant. Jacksonians may believe in total war, but they don't have a passion for internationalist crusades. Bush's biggest success in Iraq was to sell a Wilsonian war as a Jacksonian one -- and if the Jacksonians get disillusioned, that can only be good.
Kenneth R. Gregg - 3/30/2006
There is also another point to make about Jacksonian insights into war: War doesn't confine itself to nice, reasonable, sensible strictures. It's violent, messy, wild, and all of the nice, pro-war libertarians with their notions of some logic to war strategy and containment disappear in real war situations. This is one of the big lies which pro-war libertarians hide in their verbiage don't get. They're too busy playing videogame versions of real war.
Coming from a Scotch-Irish background of nearly 300 years in America, with Indian-killing, Confederate-killing, German and Japanese-killing in my genes (so to speak), I know enough of my own history to find pro-war advocates, particularly those who claim some sort of libertarian heritage in their thinking, woefully ignorant of what they speak.
I will always be antiwar because I recognize that once a war begins, it doesn't stop where anyone expects, or plans. It is an irrational force, like the genie coming out of the bottle, won't get plugged back in.
Just a thought.
Grant Gould - 3/30/2006
This is not something to hope for. With the Wilsonian leash taken off, the Jacksonians would do a thousand times as much damage.
It is the Wilsonian hope that something can be salvaged from these countries that prevents the Jacksonians from simply advocating their populations' annihiliation.
If the Jacksonian majority is unrestrained by Wilsonian illusions of democratic redemption for foreigners, there is no end to the bloodshed and horror they would bring to bear.