Monday, March 14, 2011
March 14. 2011
They're playing exhibition games this week, and you can hear the old baseball abbreviations--ERA (Earned Run Average), RISP (Runners in Scoring Position) and so on. I'd like to borrow one for a few paragraphs: RBI. But I want it to mean "Really Bad Idea" not "Runs Batted In." And boy, is there ever a RBI running around Washington these days.
This RBI has several names--let's bomb Libya, let's knock off Gaddafi, and so on. All bad. And we ought to know that. It wasn't all that long ago that we heard a very similar idea called "Let's Knock Off Saddam Hussein." It started, I suppose, when Saddam invaded Kuwait. The first President Bush (Bush 41) organized a coalition and threw Saddam out of Kuwait. Why not go further, he was asked. "My coalition would fall apart," he correctly answered.
His son Bush 43 (W) was less wise. He did invade Iraq and topple Saddam. We're still trying to get the hell out of the place . W also invaded Afghanistan; we're still trying to get the hell out of there, too.
Rules to live by: Don't invade a place unless you know why you want to be there AND you have a plan for getting out of the place once you're in it.
Well, who knows? Barack Obama is a lot smarter than W, I think. Maybe we'll be lucky this time and he will recognize a "Really Bad Idea" when he hears it.