Atrocities abound, human and political devastation is sure to ensue, as the President of the United States is rendered powerless to exercise the reason those who elected him expected to see in the White House.
His top second-term advisers—-John Kerry, Chuck Hagel and Jacob Lew—-are reduced to following scripts being imposed on them by irrationality outside the White House.
“A political agreement is still the best solution to this deadly conflict,” a New York Times editorial says of Syria, “and every effort must be made to find one. President Obama has resisted demands that he intervene militarily and in force. Though Mr. Assad’s use of chemical weapons surely requires a response of some kind, the arguments against deep American involvement remain as compelling as ever.”
On the debt ceiling, the Treasury Secretary is whistling in the dark that Republicans in Congress don’t want “a repeat of 2011. I don’t yet see that they have a plan to avoid it, which is one of the reasons it’s so important for them to come back in just a couple of weeks and get to work on getting this done and trying to make the debt issue different from other debates that we have.”
In these fantasies of negotiating with the likes of Assad and Boehner, Obama will likely be playing tennis with nobody on the other side of the net. What would any of us do in his place?
One small step would be to let him and our representatives in Congress know that not everyone in the country is in step with a mindless media that keeps reporting on both issues like ball games rather than life-and-death matters.
Voices like that of Connecticut’s Sen. Chris Murphy urging restraint on a response to Syria should be amplified by Americans everywhere to slow down this latest march to madness. The alternative is to keep fighting, and losing, wars nobody wants.