American politics is no more absurd than politics anywhere. Honestly. Trust me on this one. No new taxes.
Bush made a simple, good ole boy appeal to America last night, and he would like you to enlist for another four years. Do you still trust him, his intentions, his judgment, his leadership? It may be easier for America to trust him than for others:
"Bush is a scorpion. He is a liar. He is sneaky, making all kinds of promises when he just wants to control Iraq," said Ayman Haidar, a policeman manning a Baghdad traffic checkpoint. Iraqis Demand More Freedom, Swift End to Occupation
I am reminded of the principle of business economics, that one should judge whether to go forward based on the ROI of further
investment. In other words, it does not matter what investments you have made to date, consider only what return you will get from further investment. Sometimes you have to take a loss and it is not smart to throw good money away after a lost cause.
Here is where Bush's interests diverge from America's interests: Bush is politically invested in an all or nothing gamble. Any cost to save face is worth it to him. For America, however, it is harder to make the case that we should spend additional billions of dollars and American lives to develop more terrorist breeding resentment in the Middle East.
No matter how good your intentions, you can only station soldiers in a town so long without becoming the bad guy; that time has passed.