Obama’s Pragmatic Paradigmatics

Dr. Robert D. Crane

Posted Dec 3, 2009      •Permalink      • Printer-Friendly Version
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Obama’s Pragmatic Paradigmatics

by Dr. Robert D. Crane

  In his speech at West Point on December 1, 2009, President Barack Hossein Obama escalated his war in Central Asia by announcing a military surge.  He laid out a new paradigm of “right makes might” within a pragmatic policy borrowed from the Neo-Conservatives of a former political generation.

  From the perspective of a former ad hoc presidential speech-writer, President Obama’s word smithery was admirable in promoting, as he put it, “the message ... that our cause is just” and that the rationale of American policy is “not the deepest of fears but the highest of hopes.” 

  This is an advance over the NeoCons for whom the very word “justice” was subversive of “freedom” and who therefore carefully eliminated the natural law of peace, prosperity, and freedom through compassionate justice from all discussion.  When paradigms change, policy changes usually follow, but often only after a pragmatic time-lag that can be politically self-destructive.

  Here is the new paradigm in President Obama’s own words, which for historical purposes deserve to be preserved:

“And we must make it clear to every man, woman and child around the world who lives under the dark cloud of tyranny that America will speak out on behalf of their human rights and tend for the light of freedom and justice and opportunity and respect for the dignity of all peoples. That is who we are; that is the source, the moral source of America’s authority. ...

“America, we are passing through a time of great trial. And the message that we send in the midst of these storms must be clear: that our cause is just, our resolve unwavering. We will go forward with the confidence that right makes might and with the commitment to forge an America that is safer, a world that is more secure, and a future that represents not the deepest of fears but the highest of hopes.”