At a time of crisis, policies otherwise unthinkable must be examined seriously. The crisis is unmistakable: Americans have broadly adopted erroneous and disrespectful opinions about our leadership and enough of them may vote incorrectly next fall to cause irreparable harm to our programs. Not to mention a bunch of rude and troublesome hearings: even our own congress is this very day examining the question of whether the current wars are a big enough deal that we can do whatever we want and humiliating poor Mr. Gonzalez in public, a new and alarming level of insolence. There’s no more juice to be squoze out of Iraq; Al Qaeda has become vague and confusing and hasn’t provided a minute of useful video for two years. Afghanistan is so last Thursday; anyway it’s confusing and we wind up blowing away our own football heroes. Don’t even ask about the war on drugs. Most alarming, our friends are asking whether appropriations for them are going to slow down.
We need a new war with good explosion and airplane take-off video potential, and Iran is an excellent place to do it. We don’t need to do any of the messy occupation stuff, just nice clean air strikes, and we can leave the Iranians to sort out the rubble themselves. Such an exercise would be most usefully instructive to other oil supplying nations of which some, like Venezuela, are having delusions of sovereignty, and it would kill enough Shia (though not Arabs) to allow us to claim a benevolent neutrality as between Sunni and Shia factions. Last but not least, such a war allows most of the salutary contracting to be carried out here; it’s been quite inconvenient for our people to have the trough far away in a hot place with no golf courses and no skyboxes, and they’ve been very patient about it up to now.
If anyone can think of something we can do that will similarly tamp down congressional arrogance and generate similar levels of (i) flag and bloody shirt display for the fall elections (ii) pork for our own people, we should consider it. But our options are limited. The only thing that’s worked for us in the whole administration has been bombing Middle Eastern countries and saying “war!” and this is no time to be trying something untested that could blow up in our own face like social security or the prescription drug trainwreck.