Saturday, September 18, 2004

Will Bush institute a draft? Can Kerry avoid one?

Kerry said that if elected he will be out of Iraq in four years. Bushies claim that such talk is irresponsible.

My question is: How can Bush fight a war if he has no soldiers? Are volunteer levels still sufficient now that we see that joining the National Guard can be a long term commitment to putting yourself in the line of fire?

Even I don’t think that Karl Rove would master-mind an economic depression so deep that the only available job for millions of men and women would be the Army.

Bush cannot easily institute a draft. That means that he will have an excuse to leave an unpopular war right before the 2006 congressional elections. Abandoning Iraq will be keeping with his character.

I think this war will become most unpopular in the same mid-Western swing states that are being fought over right now. It will also be unpopular in states, such as Indiana, that seem solidly Republican, but would suddenly find a way to be both extremely conservative and extremely anti-war at the same time --- if there seems to be no end to the war in sight. This is how people like Birch Bayh and Lee Hamilton get elected in Indiana.

Conversely, the so-called liberal coasts, which have more international influences put upon them, will increasingly favor, or at least understand, a war where terrorism is being stopped in its tracks. I keep thinking that I represent a lot of centrist thinking on the war -- love the war, hate the warrior --- but no one seems to be thinking that way but me. I expect everyone will come around in time

Kerry, being a liberal hemmed in by the vast right wing conspiracy, would be unable to leave Iraq under any circumstances.

Not just Kerry, but a Democrat, any Democrat, would therefore have to fight in the end.

Not just Bush, but a Republican, virtually any Republican, could leave Iraq whenever he wanted.

If Michael Moore had the courage of his own anti-war convictions, he would vote for Bush.

However, if during the campaign, Kerry were to raise the issue of Bush's potential draft, Kerry could put both himself and Bush on record. If Kerry's media was 1/8 as effective as Bush's, he would have scared everyone by now. And, as an American (neither Democrat nor Republican), an election based on the draft would be a valid issue to determine the future direction of the country.

No election is completely free of other issues. But a full and fair election with the draft as a central issue would give the winning candidate a real mandate to do what he wanted in Iraq.