GOP's Offshore Drilling, Dems' Afghan Surge Both Bad Ideas

Both are blindly touting poor policy: Friedman
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 30, 2008 10:00 AM CDT
Barack Obama's support for an Afghan "surge" is ill-considered, writes Thomas L. Friedman.   (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
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(Newser) – Democrats and Republicans alike are beating empty campaign slogans, and both need to take a look at their real-world implications, writes Thomas L. Friedman in the New York Times. Republicans who insist that offshore oil drilling will solve the world's problems sound like "someone back in 1980" pushing for "cheaper IBM Selectric typewriters."

Meanwhile, Barack Obama's plan to step up troop levels in Afghanistan betrays a misunderstanding of Middle East politics, writes the columnist, and will do little more than prop up a corrupt government. But "the main reason we are losing in Afghanistan," the columnist insists, "is not because there are too few American soldiers, but because there are not enough Afghans ready to fight and die for the kind of government we want."