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George.
02-10-2008, 05:47 AM
Now you are down to three contenders, all of them apparently competent and reasonable people.

Given that the Iraq war is at the root of all the major crisis the US is undergoing, from being militarily and diplomatically bogged down to the sinking dollar and US economy, what exactly does each candidate propose to do to end it?

Please, concise and objective responses only. No "McCain and the Reps will turn it into an Orwellian endless war" or "Hillary and the Dems will surrender and accept defeat." Pretend that you are actually more concerned with the future of your country than with slinging mud at the other party.

PeterSibley
02-10-2008, 05:55 AM
That is an unfair condition .

Ian McColgin
02-10-2008, 07:05 AM
The Democrat will try to internationalize external security - UN, deal with Iran, etc. - while pulling out, which could look like the last days in Siagon. McCain says he'd keep troops in place until Iraq has a stabile government of which we approve. Neither says exactly what they will do with the millions we are wasting by undermining our military by outsoursing logistics and blatant murder to contractors like Blackhawk.

rbgarr
02-10-2008, 07:48 AM
A President's ability to influence the economy directly is generally overestimated.

TimH
02-10-2008, 07:56 AM
Our short term economic problems have more to do with the mortgage crisis and the fact all of our good paying jobs are going over seas.

George.
02-10-2008, 08:12 AM
Imagine the US economy if Bush hadn't invaded Iraq. Imagine all the money the government would not have spent. Imagine it as a lower deficit, or more tax cuts, or both.

Imagine the US economy is Bush hadn't spent eight years lying about global warming instead of fighting it. Imagine a booming alternative energy sector, better energy efficiency for cars, homes, and industry, and less reliance on imported oil.

Now imagine the impact of both not invading Iraq and reducing oil dependence on the price of oil. Imagine oil at less than $50 a barrel, and the US importing less of it. Imagine the impact of that on consumers, the US dollar, and the trade deficit.

The Iraq invasion has wrecked the US economy, and will keep sucking at its jugular for years. I am surprised that there is no serious debate among candidates and voters regarding what to do about it.

Ian McColgin
02-10-2008, 08:30 AM
No one wants to talk about it publicly because no matter what, it will be messy and humiliating and will cost many Iraqi and American lives.

Exact details can only be worked out by a sitting president because the huge logistics will take considerable international cooperation especially involving Iran, Saudi Arabia and Israel. Despite Reagan's Iran precedent, a candidate can't lawfully do those negotiations.

Keith Wilson
02-10-2008, 10:11 AM
I think the short answer is: "they all want to get out as soon as we reasonably can". The expected time period is longer for McCain, shorter for Clinton, a bit shorter yet for Obama.

You're quite right about the US economy. Bush will go into the same pile as Buchanan and Hoover.

ishmael
02-10-2008, 10:28 AM
Our debt in Iraq is nothing compared to our unfunded entitlements going forward. Sure, it's going to be a trillion plus, but nothing compared to the fifty or sixty trillion promised over the next thirty years by SS and Medicaid. That's a structural imbalance that few are willing to address, because no one wants to hear about it, and it's painful to speak of, politically.

The Democrats speak grandiosely about having health insurance for everyone, ending the war in Iraq, etc. I've yet to hear how they are going to pay for the first, or implement the latter in a nation that has become the premier debtor on the planet.

We'll see. The chickens will come home to roost, and there will be a reevaluation of what this American experiment is about, no matter who the next president is.

George Roberts
02-10-2008, 10:40 AM
The "givens" appear to be self serving but ...

Life is at best like trying to control a small boat in a hurricane. One should forget the destination and go where the winds/waves blow.

The war will end. We will either fight in the next war or not.

The economy will change. Those who change with the economy will prosper more than those who resist.

Nanoose
02-10-2008, 11:14 AM
What happens if the lenders call in the debts?

ishmael
02-10-2008, 11:34 AM
"What happens if the lenders call in the debts?"

They'll be as screwed as we will be, and they know it.

It's a house of cards, but it belongs to all of us.

LeeG
02-10-2008, 11:35 AM
Don't think the war is the root of ALL crisis, seems to me we're defering a lot of crisis and the same is happening for the candidates regarding Iraq.

No one really wants to say that we can't put the toothpaste back in the tube. That's one of the reasons for the necons disinformation program pushing it,,all they had to do was make it happen and we'd be committed, no matter the outcome.

McCain/Republicans don't propose to end it.
Hillary and Obama are willing to concieve of ending it but none of the candidates can dictate the outcome, we'll be occupying a few bases for at as long as it's affordable. The situation in Iraq and US economy will set those parameters.

Cuyahoga Chuck
02-10-2008, 12:05 PM
What Mc Cain is proposing is yet unclear but it certainly sounds like "more of the same" till he clarifies what he means.
In the end, circumstances rule. If the bills endanger the overall economy, if the needed military volunteers don't materialize, if the electorate just says it's had enough the end will have come.
The Democrats have an easier time. After being on the back burner for so long they cannot afford to ignore the portents. The only reason none have stated a hard and fast policy is they don't want to risk being tagged with the scarlet letter, "the folks who lost the war ".
If the current economic downturn becomes a barn-burner the cost of the war will become too onerus and the troops will have to be brought home no matter what the strategic situation is.
One problem has recently been identified. Someone in the Pentagon has flatly stated that the US CANNOT come up with sufficient forces to meet threats beyond those we are meeting already. We are strung out to the limit.
Any way you look at it the war has run it's course. It will just take some time for the political rhetoric to catch up with the fasctual situation.

Cuyahoga Chuck
02-10-2008, 12:18 PM
"What happens if the lenders call in the debts?"

They'll be as screwed as we will be, and they know it.

It's a house of cards, but it belongs to all of us.

As far as I can tell the arguement has only two sides and you have just hammered both of them. Running around in the piney woods yelling,"the sky is falliing" is not a thereputic solution
Believe it or not the Union will outlast all of us. There are some extremely ignorant citizens in our relm but most of them will see the light once they see what their paladin, George Bush, has gotten their country into.

George.
02-10-2008, 12:37 PM
"the folks who lost the war "


Whoever ends the Iraq war will be accused of having "lost" it, by dimwits who cannot see that it is already lost. It was thus in Germany after WWI and in the US after Vietnam.

Frankly, grownups shouldn't worry about such childish jingoism, except as far as it may lead to future "stabbed in the back" theories that are used to justify further reckless wars - as with Germany in WWII and the US in Iraq.

Pierce Nichols
02-10-2008, 12:41 PM
What happens if the lenders call in the debts?

There's an old saying... if you owe the bank ten thousand, you have a problem; if you owe the bank a million, the bank has a problem.