Monday, November 28, 2016

"Why Would Romney Even Want This Job?"

I didn't think of this. From the Washington Post's invaluable "The Daily 202":
A serious question: why would Romney even want this job? A diplomat tends to be most successful when allies and adversaries believe that he or she speaks directly for the president. This was the case for Condi Rice but not Colin Powell. Romney would be ineffective if foreign leaders did not think that his words carry much weight because they, hypothetically, could send intermediaries to appeal to Trump’s children who are overseeing his financial interests abroad.
Much as I'd love to see a sane, solid, pragmatist as Secretary of State, this is a good point. Anyone sane, solid, and pragmatic will be seen by foreign governments as distant from the capriciousness and drama of Trump and his inner circle. And a weak Secretary of State will indeed augment the corruption likely to flow through the kids (whether that channel "sticks" is irrelevant; even if the kids turn out to be moral paragons, what's important is how other countries see the incentive structure).

I can't express how deeply I loathe Giuliani, but if he was to convey something to a foreign government, they'd certainly believe he had the full weight of his administration behind him. Romney would not only find his assurances cuckolded from above, but foreign leaders would expect that from day one, even if it never happened (and, oh, it certainly would). There is nothing more useless than an impotent diplomat.

WaPo's Daily 202 arrives every morning in my email, just the right length and density for a quick scan, and there's always something enlightening. It's free; sign up here or read online here.

Also: whether you're opposed to Trump or warily voted for him hoping for the best, consider supporting the Washington Post's excellent reporting (which has been the strongest out there on Trump for months) with a $99 digital subscription. Help keep what's left of independent journalism alive during these scary times and be part of "the solution"!
I never read straight down their front page (the way I sometimes do with NYT), but I keep bumping into their articles (via referrals from Twitter or Google News), and it's great having an automatic sign-on and no pesky reading limits. And whenever I read those articles, I find myself thanking heavens above for Washington Post. Really, they're doing the best non-strident Trump investigation and push-back.


Unknown said...

Subscribed to the Post based on this, thanks for encouragement

Jim Leff said...

No problem, Joshi.

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