"We must use what has been called 'smart power', the full range of tools at our disposal. With 'smart power', diplomacy will be the vanguard of foreign policy."--Hillary Clinton
Normally I am not one to nitpick such sweeping and vague pronouncements from a member of our beloved leadership, but when Hillary made the above proclamation at her Senate hearing the other day, a chain reaction was started in the media that I just have to speak to.
"Smart Power" seemed to be the only thing that Ms. Clinton really had to promise in order to get the enthusiastic approbation of the Senate and the media. There was no real substance to her proposal. It basically came down to "I will be smart, not dumb. (Like Bush and Co.) We will be good, not evil. (Like Bush and Co.) And all will be great, not crap. (Like Bush and Co.)
Wow, it must have taken a think tank a lot of long nights and many pots of coffee to come up with this new political philosophy.
I know she is trying to say she will employ diplomacy first and military might only when necessary, but this is really the exact approach taken by Bush and just about every other administration before.
But hers will be "smart!"
I have come to really hate when the word 'smart' is employed to sell things, the inference is if you don't want it or like it you are dumb. It's the same technique used with the Patriot Act or The Fuzzy Baby Bunny bill-"How can you oppose it?!"
I defy you to find an article about Tina Fey that does not mention that she is "smart. "And she has the glasses to prove it!"
Now, I don't doubt the IQ of either of these fine women, they have both achieved substantial things in their given fields of endeavor. I just get weary of seeing an appellation like 'smart' getting craftily attached to something to create a 'spin' that is usually unchallenged by the media. It is what the great poet Charles Bukowski called "a shortcut to thinking."
I remember years ago when the movie Bram Stoker's Dracula came out, almost every reviewer to a man mentioned how true to Stoker's tale this movie was, I am sure because of it being Bram Stoker's Dracula instead of just Dracula. And of course, they revealed to everyone that has read the book that they had never cracked its' pages, because Bram Stoker's Dracula is waaay off!
And just as an aside, I wonder if Hillary would confess to having employed 'Dumb Power' when she signed on to the invasion of Iraq?