Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Restoring Our Reputation Abroad

Say, wasn't the Obama administration's very existence supposed to make the world a better place? I thought that making the world like us again by making America a country worthy of being liked was supposed to just magically create peace.

Apparently not, according to our vice president, who spoke about the challenges abroad:

This has all led to a number of immediate crises that demand our attention from ISIL to Ebola to Ukraine -- just to name a few that are on our front door -- as someone said to me earlier this week, the wolves closest to the door.

Each one in its own way is symptomatic of the fundamental changes that are taking place in the world. These changes have also led to larger challenges. The international order that we painstakingly built after World War II and defended over the past several decades is literally fraying at the seams right now.

Maybe if we stopped pulling at the threads ourselves, we could slow the fraying a little bit.

And maybe we could stop taking cheap shots at Old Europe, as Biden did in that speech:

Ladies and gentlemen, raise your hand if you think our main competition is going to come from the EU in the next decade. Put your hands up. (Laughter.) I’m not being facetious here now, I’m being deadly earnest. We want -- it is overwhelmingly our interest that the EU grow, and that China grows, because when they don’t grow, we don’t grow as fast. But, ladies and gentlemen, relative terms, we are so well-positioned if we act rationally, if we invest in our people.

Point out our strengths, sure. I think we have inherent strengths as a nation that can counter the policies of our federal government. The success of fracking, for example.

But mock the Europeans when we are trying to get them to help us fight ISIL? Come on! As if John Kerry--that figurative "kick me" sign pinned to America's back--can handle a greater degree of difficulty with his limited skill set in diplomacy.