Garrison Keillor: What we fear is arrogance
A quote from Garrison Keillor, here, that captures the nobler strain of American foreign policy (and, for the record, I don’t mean Democratic or Republican, but that of humility and respect that is often—as now—drowned out by jingoism):
Democrats are thought to be weak on foreign policy—fearful of the use of American power in the world—but what we fear is arrogance. History shows so clearly the stupidities of 1915—old men in power with little notion of where they were headed, afraid to betray uncertainty or fear, willing to sacrifice a generation of young men so that old men could parade around in their plumed helmets for a few more years—which is also the stupidity of Vietnam and is still with us today …
We prefer to stand with the tradition of Adams and Franklin and Jefferson, who made the voyage across the Atlantic and polished their French and learned to make their way by their wits and not by throwing money around or at the point of a cannon. America has produced great travelers and explorers and missionaries. They didn’t stand behind a podium and thunder and threaten and strike a belligerent pose for domestic consumption, they went out into the world with courage and curiosity to take it on its own terms. They looked, they listened, they learned to walk lightly.
-Garrison Keillor: Homegrown Democrat, p. 213 and p. 217
Tags: Garrison+Keillor, Homegrown+Democrat, war+Iran, neoconservatism, war+on+terror, jingoism, foreign+policy, Monte Asbury