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|FrenchieCat (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore||Thu May-19-05 08:20 PM
Response to Reply #38
|40. Your points, and mine....|
Edited on Thu May-19-05 08:21 PM by FrenchieCat
YOUR POINT: Clark has no elected office experience whatsoever.
MINE: Granted, that is true; Clark has not held any elected office, and is not per se a professional politician. However, I will add that executive experience, character, leadership abilities and courage is what Presidents need moreso than anything else; Clark has these traits, IMO, although not via an elected position.
Bush Jr. had elective office experience, and worked with legislatures....and IMHO, that did nothing for how well he has performed on the job. I disagree that what this nation is in need of right now....or possibly in 2008 is another professional elected politician.
Let me know if the last few Democratic politicians we have put up, who had previously held elected position, are currently as president.
a very simple job description for POTUS from Scholastic:
The Constitution assigns the president two roles: chief executive of the federal government and Commander in Chief of the armed forces. As Commander in Chief, the president has the authority to send troops into combat, and is the only one who can decide whether to use nuclear weapons.
As chief executive, he enforces laws, treaties, and court rulings; develops federal policies; prepares the national budget; and appoints federal officials. He also approves or vetoes acts of Congress and grants pardons.
YOUR POINT: He has no legislative or policy accomplishments to point to
MINE: Well he does and he doesn't. It depends on what you would label as "policy accomplishments".
Clark, a Rhodes scholar with advanced degrees from Oxford in Economics, Political Science and Economics was also a White House Fellow and served as a Special Assistant to the Director of the Office of Management and Budget. He taught economics, and social science at West Point.
Did his "policy accomplishments" have to take place in an office? If so, too bad, otherwise:
Clark action on Affirmative Action
Success of military diversity proves affirmative action works
In the University of Michigan affirmative action case this year, I joined military and political leaders in an amicus brief affirming my deeply held belief that policies combating discrimination are essential to good order, combat readiness and military effectiveness. As a result of these policies, the military is one of the most integrated institutions in America. And our country is safer today because it is defended by a diverse, integrated, talented military that is the envy of the world.
Does testifying against a war, when you don't have to, count as an accomplishment?
Clark policy action on Genocide which eventually led to his "early retirement"
b]Waiting for the General
By Elizabeth Drew
Clark had also favored military action against the genocide in Rwanda.
Clark was almost alone in pushing for a humanitarian intervention in Rwanda.
Pulitzer award winning Samantha Power for her book "A Problem from Hell" : America and the Age of Genocide
endorsed Wes Clark http://www.kiddingonthesquare.com/2003/12/redeeming_wes ...
The following excerpts from Power's book give the details.
General Clark is one of the heroes of Samantha Power's book. She introduces him on the second page of her chapter on Rwanda and describes his distress on learning about the genocide there and not being able to contact anyone in the Pentagon who really knew anything about it and/or about the Hutu and Tutsi.
She writes, "He frantically telephoned around the Pentagon for insight into the ethnic dimension of events in Rwanda. Unfortunately, Rwanda had never been of more than marginal concern to Washington's most influential planners" (p. 330) .
He advocated multinational action of some kind to stop the genocide. "Lieutenant General Wesley Clark looked to the White House for leadership. 'The Pentagon is always going to be the last to want to intervene,' he says. 'It is up to the civilians to tell us they want to do something and we'll figure out how to do it.' But with no powerful personalities or high-ranking officials arguing forcefully for meaningful action, midlevel Pentagon officials held sway, vetoing or stalling on hesitant proposals put forward by midlevel State Department and NSC officials" (p. 373).
According to Power, General Clark was already passionate about humanitarian concerns, especially genocide, before his appointment as Supreme Allied Commander of NATO forces in Europe.
She details his efforts in behalf of the Dayton Peace Accords and his brilliant command of NATO forces in Kosovo. The NATO bombing campaign succeeded in removing brutal Serb police units from Kosovo, in ensuring the return on 1.3 million Kosovo Albanians, and in securing for Albanians the right of self-governance."
".....Favoring humanitarian intervention had never been a great career move."
Samantha Power's comments on Wesley Clark at the December 17, 2003, press conference in Concord, New Hampshire after the General's testimony at the Hague .
"...I spent about seven years looking into American responses to genocide in the twentieth century, and discovered something that may not surprise you but that did surprise me, which was that until 1999 the United States had actually never intervened to prevent genocide in our nation's history. Successive American presidents had done an absolutely terrific job pledging never again, and remembering the holocaust, but ultimately when genocide confronted them, they weighed the costs and the benefits of intervention, and they decided that the risks of getting involved were actually far greater than the other non-costs from the standpoint of the American public, of staying uninvolved or being bystanders. That changed in the mid-1990s, and it changed in large measure because General Clark rose through the ranks of the American military.
The mark of leadership is not to standup when everybody is standing, but rather to actually stand up when no one else is standing. And it was Pentagon reluctance to intervene in Rwanda, and in Bosnia, that actually made it much, much easier for political leaders to turn away. When the estimates started coming out of the Pentagon that were much more constructive, and proactive, and creative, one of the many deterrents to intervention melted away. And so I think, again, in discussing briefly the General's testimony, it's important to remember why he was able to testify at the Hague, and he testified because he decided to own something that was politically very, very unfashionable at the time."
Constituent base is relative. I realize that Warner won one election, and so he does have the edge of having won....though he never ran a national campaign...something Clark did do.
Some will stay thinking in the box that we have been put in....and when thinking "President"...will only think about celebrities politicians (Hillary and Edwards) and Senators (Biden, Kerry, Bayh, Feingold and Boxer)and Governors (Warner, Richardson and Vilsack), and that's OK. But if you look at what this country needs right now - a leader with courage, and determination to do the right thing, those other candidates pale in comparison to Wes Clark, IMO.
I think that the below Awards speak volumes of Clark's policy accomplishments...although they may not have been for being the Governor of a small state...
General Wesley K. Clark USA (ret.) is the nation's most highly decorated officer since Dwight Eisenhower. Among his military decorations are the Defense Distinguished Service Medal (five awards); Distinguished Service Medal (two awards); Silver Star, Legion of Merit (four awards); Bronze Star Medal (two awards); Purple Heart; Meritorious Service Medal (two awards); Army Commendation Medal (two awards); NATO Medal for Service with NATO on Operations in Relation to Kosovo, NATO Medal for Service with NATO on Operations in Relation to the Former Republic of Yugoslavia, Legacy of Leadership and Lady Liberty(TM) Award.
His Foreign awards include the Honorary Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (United Kingdom); Commander of the Legion of Honor (France); Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany; Knight Grand Cross in the Order of Orange-Nassau, with Swords (Netherlands); Grand Officer of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Italy; Grand Cross of the Medal of Military Merit (Portugal); The Commander's Cross with Star of the Order of Merit of Republic of Poland; Grand Officer of the Order of Merit of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg; Grand Medal of Military Merit (White Band) (Spain); The Grand Cordon of the Order of Leopold (Belgium); Cross of Merit of the Minister of Defense First Class (Czech Republic); Order of Merit of the Hungarian Republic; Commander's Cross, The Silver Order of Freedom of the Republic of Slovenia; Madarski Konnik Medal (Bulgaria); Commemorative Medal of the Minister of Defense of the Slovak Republic First Class (Slovakia); First Class Order of Lithuanian Grand Duke Gediminas (Lithuania); Order of the Cross of the Eagle (Estonia); The Skandeberg Medal (Albania); Order of Merit of Morocco; Order of Merit of Argentina; The Grade of Prince Butmir w/Ribbon and Star (Croatia) and the Military Service Cross of Canada.
(Central Europe Sep. 8, 2000, U.S. State Department Oct. 2, 1999, http://Individual.com )
Going back when the Medal of Freedom meant something!
Jesse Jackson, Gen. Clark Awarded Medal of Freedom With 13 Others
Washington - An emotional President Bill Clinton praised the "keen intellect and loving heart" of sometime political rival Rev. Jesse Jackson, and the leadership of the iconoclastic general who disagreed with his strategy during the Kosovo air war, as he bestowed the Presidential Medal of Freedom .....
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