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The Return of the 90s

I watched the West Wing again recently. I associate this show with the upbeat 90s, the unipolar moment, and the pre 9/11 area, but it aired in the United States from 1999-2006, i.e. primarily during the Bush rather than the Clinton administration. I think for many Democrats the Clinton era continued on TV for two years, until 9/11 happened, the mood changed, 24 with Jack Bauer became popular and the West Wing ratings dropped.

Today I read on the State Department blog about an Ambassador Lyman traveling to Darfur. What? Did not Josh usually send Donna Moss to the dangerous places?

Secretary Clinton's statement on "our limitless faith in human potential" could very well have been from Bartlett as well. Secretary Clinton said after a meeting with EU High Representative for Foreign Policy Catherine Ashton on "advancing democratic values and universal rights, efforts to protect civilians and implement the United Nations Security Council resolution in Libya" and other issues:

The United States and the European Union are partners working together on, I think, every global issue and regional challenge that you can imagine. We're doing the urgent, the important, and the long-term all at once, and we are united in a transatlantic community that is based on shared democratic values and limitless faith in human potential.

Obama has not just killed Bin Laden. He also killed cynicism and brought humanitarian interventions back. The return of 90s. I can't wait for new West Wing episodes.

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Pat Patterson on :

So Ben Ladin died for our sins and now we can start wearing happy face buttons again?

Kevin Sampson on :

Uhhh, Libya began well before bin Laden was killed and largely at French urging. Obama was/is not about to get involved in another Mid-East war as evidenced by the fact that our participation in Libya is limited to combat suport now, not combat ops, except for the occasional UCAV.

John in Michigan, US on :

The West Wing was an OUTSTANDING show. Even though it was generally sympathetic to a left point of view, it was the first serious (and seriously award-winning) drama to actually permit conservative and libertarian points of view to, gasp, have their day in the sun, to be spoken openly, to be framed and defended the way real believers in them would do, by characters that were real characters and not just one dimensional, cardboard bad guys. In 1999 that was UNHEARD OF (except on cartoons like The Simpsons). 24 was of course a darker show, but it is also excellent, almost as good as West Wing although by now 24, like X-files, is running out of fresh ideas. Check out [i]Weeds[/i], you will enjoy the actress Mary-Louise Parker who was big on West Wing.

John in Michigan, US on :

Oh, I almost forgot. Before you declare the end of cynicism, you need to realize that Obama appears to be COMPLETELY IGNORING the War Powers Act. [url=http://www.salon.com/news/libya/?story=/news/feature/2011/05/21/us_white_house_libya]The 60 day deadline expired Fri, May 20[/url]. Therefore, US involvement in Libya must end within 30 days or else Obama is -- once again -- a "war criminal". I say once again because, according to strict interpretation of International Law that I don't agree with, the bin Laden assassination was also illegal. Note that the 30 day deadline cannot be extended. Any extension had to be passed before Fri May 20. But it looks like the War Powers Act is one of those laws that are optional, you have to check with the press and public opinion to see if we're following the laws today, or not. Or, perhaps the War Powers Act only applies to Republicans? Almost makes me want to give the Paul Bros. a second look.

Pat Patterson on :

But the WPA is a living, breathing document that must keep up with international mores.

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