31.8.05

Interesting article for those of you interested in foreign policy theory

Francis Fukuyama brings us a well thought out article on US foreign policy over the past few years. He makes many lucid insights but I found this one to be the most interesting:

The president's Jacksonian base, which provides the bulk of the troops serving and dying in Iraq, has no natural affinity for such a policy but would not abandon the commander in chief in the middle of a war, particularly if there is clear hope of success.

This war coalition is fragile, however, and vulnerable to mishap. If Jacksonians begin to perceive the war as unwinnable or a failure, there will be little future support for an expansive foreign policy that focuses on promoting democracy.


I Tend to agree with Fukuyama here with two caveats; time and politics. As time passes, people have the tendency to view the past through rose colored glasses. Think about it, some of your best stories come from times when you were completely miserable. This same revisionism happens in the foreign policy world as well. Politics, our ever present 800lb gorilla. What Fukuyama fails to mention is that the war was not originally sold as "promoting democracy" it was sold on fear. Fear works, period. Expect to see it used the next time a political group needs to sell something that they know they could never get if they were upfront with their reasoning.

19.8.05

It's time to head for the mountains...


I'm off for what appears to be my only backpacking trip this year. I'll be at the lake pictured in the beautiful Weminuche Wilderness outside of Durango. An entire week without hammers or electronic devices, ah the relaxation... Enjoy your week as well!

15.8.05

An excellent article on suicide terrorism...

This article is definitely worth a read. The author, who has studied suicide terrorism extensively, makes some very interesting and, in some cases, surprising observations. I'm sure that the magazine that conducted the interview was hoping for a different set of conclusions but Dr. Pape left them little wiggle room...

Where have I been?

Well, I bought a house in downtown Fort Collins and have been spending every available minute working on remodeling it. This week, I'm finishing the complete replacement of the back roof. I noticed a leak two weeks ago and, after tearing off the two layers of roofing, discovered that the joists were all snapped off near the rear wall. Needless to say, it's been quite a bit of work. Thankfully, my folks and a few friends (Travis and Jeff) have been a great deal of help. I'm about ready to do a little backpacking and climbing in the Weminuche Wilderness next week and I'm really looking forward to not having a hammer in my hand for an entire week...

I hope your summer has been exciting, just not as exciting as mine....