Monday, February 18, 2008

Disorganized thoughts on Kosovar Independence

This is surprising to me. Although I'm not sure why. Kosovo is now independent. When the bombing started, under President Clinton, it was viewed by many people, myself included as a half-assed gesture. Push button war-making at it's worst. But now history is proving the nay-sayers wrong. Milosevic was ousted, and now the Kosovar's are independent. I remember arguing that the only way to stop the ethnic cleansing was to put troops on the ground. But compare the outcomes of this push button war and the war in Iraq and you begin to feel it was not so spineless after all.

The question this situation now begs is the very reasonable one coming out of Moscow; what will this mean to other seperatist movements? Further, how will Muslim sepratists look on this? Will it enflame their already ferverent belief that the Christian world will never recognize their rights? This can, and most likely will, further undermine the stability of the basic unit of power for the past few centuries; the nation-state.

Is that in fact what we are seeing in this epoch? First the dissolution of Empires, then the eroision of the nation-state itself? That's perhaps a bit of a drastic assumption. The ethnically homogeneous nation states, like France and Germany are probably not in any great danger of collapse in the near future. It is in the post-imerpial states where the dissolution is occuring. And this is perhaps not an entirely bad thing, particularly in Europe. The benefit of being part of a major power, i.e. military and industrial organizing capacity, has become of little benefit on the continent. However, this does still bode ill for the post-imperial states outside of Europe. The precident it sets can and will only embolden those sepratist movements that are still threating to destablize an already unstable world.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Ann Coulter Supports Hillary?!?

This got me thinking. Why do the conservative media and the Republican candidates keep acting like Hillary is the presumptive nominee? Also, why does the (so-called) liberal media seem to have a bias against her?

On the first point, I reasoned that it is most likely out of necessity. Since Conservatives have no real standard bearer, they are attempting to use anti-Clinton sentiment as a rallying point. The logic being, if they cannot inspire social conservatives on their issues then they can use their presumed hatred of the name Clinton, and Hillary in particular, as the next best thing. The question is going to be, how much does the conservative movement actually hate Hillary? If the behavior of conservative pundits and strategists is to be believed, then quite a lot. However, since neither group can really claim to have their finger on the pulse of their audience that remains to be seen.

The second point is a bit more dubious. Why, after only winning two primaries outright, has the media proclaimed Obama to have the momentum each time, while Hillary's numerous wins have always been presented in a less glorious light (the AP's announcement that Hillary "claims" a win in Florida was one example)? While most ardent Hillary supporters I have spoke with chalk it up to the press simply not liking the woman (or her being a woman, depending on how militantly feminist the person I was speaking with was), I think the answer is simpler than that. I think, from the standpoint of the press, that Obama is simply a more interesting story. Hillary's run for president surprised no one. It was speculated, it was assumed. In short, it was yesterday's news. Hill, like McCain, has been in the press' gun sights for a very long time. As far as news people are concerned, old news is bad news. Obama, a new face who is camera friendly, no history in the press, etc, etc, simply makes for better copy.

All in all, I think that if Hillary can weather this level of apathy to and abuse of her narrative, there is no reason why she can't win in November.