The Moose is fond of Cowboys.
As a native of the Lone Star State, the Moose is partial to Cowboys. He is even a Dallas Cowboys fan. As a youth, he frequented the Heart of Texas Fair and Rodeo back Waco.
That fondness is not shared by the East Coast and European elites - Cowboy envy perhaps. Time Magazine this week suggests that President Bush has given up what is derisively known as "Cowboy Diplomacy."
Cowboy diplomacy is seen as a shoot from the hip, reckless, go it alone and belligerent approach to the world. The Bush Administration is certainly worthy of criticism on the foreign policy front. But don't scapegoat Cowboys.
Yes, Cowboys were tough, but they won and tamed the West. It is a hoary myth that they were "shoot first, ask questions later" types. They treasured peace and tranquility. What they realized, however, is that talk sometimes must be supported by the potential use of force. Otherwise, a fella was "all hat and no cattle."
They were direct, but they were straight shooters. Far from being reckless, they were sober realists who understood that the world could be a dangerous place. And what is the alternative to "Cowboy Diplomacy?"
Currently, we are witnessing feckless diplomacy from the Bush Administration. This is less High Noon and more Blazing Saddles. From North Korea to Iran, our enemies are on the offensive. North Korean is taunting us with her promiscuous missile launchings. Iran is brazenly ignoring the pleadings of the international striped pants set. They are going forward with their nuclear plans despite the luscious carrots that are being offered them.
And Iran continues to promote mischief and mayhem in Iraq. Undoubtedly, they have a hand in the troubles in Gaza and, of course, with their proxy Hezbollah in Lebanon. It seems more and more like 1980 when an emboldened Iran and Soviet Union were challenging American power.
And of course, at the time, Ronald Reagan was derided as a Cowboy. Send in the Cowboys!
To the Administration's credit, they are pointing the finger of blame at Iran and Syria for Hezbollah's latest terrorist actions. However, it is only a matter of time that Hezbollah could have access to Iranian nuclear expertise and material. What is the Administration going to do about it?
If the Cowboys have been sent to cut brush back in Crawford, why should the Iranians and the North Koreans be concerned? The bad guys are on the loose and we need some law and order.
Don't blame Cowboys for the Bush Administration's current foreign policy woes - blame incompetence and even passivity. We should not be ashamed of a "Cowboy" image. What we should be concerned about is when we are perceived as weak and ineffective.
Democrats need a little Cowboy, as well. This is an opportunity to argue that the Bushies are failing to stand down the bad guys in the world.
We need more Cowboys who are wily and tough. Mama, let your politicians grow up to be Cowboys. --