Place Matters

I think Haggai and Kevin Drum need to rethink their blasé attitude toward the time and place at which president Bush decided to foray into presidential politics with attacks on Barack Obama.

Kevin writes that "24/7 cable news has made the distinction of where something is said mostly obsolete and the symbology of showing a united front on foreign soil little more than a quaint relic of an earlier age." I'd say this is true insofar as we're saying Bush should feel no compunction about saying something in Israel (or some other country) that he'd be comfortable saying in the United States. But I do think there's a difference when you're talking about using the Israeli parliament as the setting for your speech. Basically, when you do that you're dragging foreign government officials into our domestic political dispute. It's not the greatest outrage in the world, but it's not really an appropriate way for the president to conduct himself or the country's foreign policy.