True, it's not as simple as "if you want your vote to count, you'd better throw the insurgents out"--Wright seems to have been assuming more of a de facto partition in the country than the Allawi government is now contemplating. People in the insurgent-dominated Sunni areas would have to be convinced that any new nationwide government, elected without their participation, would be here to stay, and that they'd gain by joining in holding elections themselves (as opposed to fighting on and negotiating later). ... The point is that the threat of piecemeal elections can be highly useful, pointing the country's ethnic pressures in a good direction. ... P.S.: If fair elections were held in Shiite and Kurdish areas, plus wherever else they could be held, why would they not have "legitimacy"? They would have legitimacy as expressing the will of the areas in which they were held, no? ... 11:17 A.M.
Attention, Electoral College map-makers: You might want to start factoring in this guy. ... 9:13 A.M.
Tuesday, September 7, 2004
NYT's Nagourney before Bush pulls ahead: Nothing changes in this campaign!
NYT's Nagourney after Bush pulls ahead: "If there is any lesson about this election ...[snip] it is that dynamics and public opinion change fast."
P.S.:Patterico has an elaborate, paranoid and not-implausible chart of the LAT's similarly self-contradicting pro-Kerry choreography. ... 3:11 P.M.
I dissent from the latest campaign CW that Kerry must talk about the economy, health care, etc. for the next two months rather than Iraq and the War on Terror--and that every day spent talking about Iraq and terror is somehow a bad day for him. (See., e.g., today's Note). 1) The issues of Iraq and the WOT are intellectually unavoidable. They're the most important things at stake in the election; 2) Because they are intellectual unavoidable, trying to avoid them (in order to focus on the economy) calls Kerry's judgment into question; 3) They're going to come up anyway, as they did yesterday; 4) The economy's not in such bad shape--by which I mean not that the statistics are OK, but that the ordinary lives of Americans aren't in such bad shape, despite the wishfully downbeat reporting of a cocooning anti-Bush press; 5) Whatever shape the economy is in, it's something the voters know about. Kerry can't convince them the economy is better than they know it is or worse than they know it is. But the argument against Bush's terror strategy is one that they might not have heard; 6) To the extent voters' economic lives are worse, many of them realize at some level that there is little Kerry can do to, e.g., stop the forces of globalization and technology that are changing the economic game; .. P.S.: I agree Kerry should also talk about health care, stem cells, etc.. I just don't see where--barring some Iraq disaster that makes the case for him--he avoids a frontal assault on Bush's terror strategy. If you agree with Bush on terror, are you really going to vote for Kerry in order to reduce your Medicare bill? ...[What about Churchill and Attlee?--ed. Churchill lost after WWII was essentially over.] ... P.P.S.: ABC's Teddy Davis makes at least point #3 at the end of his latest campaign dispatch, and also memorably reports:
There is no way to know where Kerry will ultimately end up on Iraq.
Only time will tell! ... Update: Taranto argues that the Kerry-should-go-domestic CW is quite intentionally a strategy to allow Kerry to "lose with dignity," thereby protecting downballot Dems. ... 12:43 P.M.
Monday, September 6, 2004
Eduwonk on the latest in the NYT's campaign to leave no disingenuous anti-NCLB story behind. ... 7:27 P.M.