President George W. Wilson?

By: Thomas E. Brewton

The President’s low opinion-poll ratings, coupled with his recent string of setbacks, threaten a period of presidential impotence not unlike the last two years of President Woodrow Wilson’s second term. Then the United States had no threatening foreign enemies. Today we are in the middle of a worldwide military and ideological war against radical Islam.

In 1918, after Allied victory in World War I, the “War to End All Wars,” President Woodrow Wilson returned from Paris brimming with plans for a world government under the League of Nations. American Progressives and world socialists confidently expected to eliminate wars for all time by adjudicating international disputes in a debating forum.

The Senate, however, was unprepared to give the Constitutionally-required two-thirds concurrence (Article II, Section 2) to approve American entry into the League. As realists foresaw, without an independent armed force, the League of Nations would be unable to enforce its resolutions.

Most importantly, then as today, Americans were war weary. Wilson had been re-elected in 1916 on the slogan, “He kept us out of war,” referring to our refusal to become involved in Europe’s World War I quarrels, which had started two years earlier.

Progressive-socialists, led by John Dewey, had supported our involvement in 1917. But, in a parallel to liberals’ protests today against the Iraq war and surveillance of Al Queda phone traffic, after the Wilson administration passed the 1917 Espionage and 1918 Sedition Acts and cracked down on socialist agitators, Progressive-socialists and anarchists, led by the group that became the ACLU, turned against American participation.

In the 1918 elections, Republicans made gains in Congress. This along with ideological opposition from Progressive-socialists left President Wilson treading water for the last two years of his term.

Recent Wall Street Journal editorials and essays by’s George Friedman detail the stalemate facing President Bush.

Iran and North Korea, as well as Al Queda, are aware, after the public and Congressional rebellion against the Dubai Ports deal, that President Bush lacks public support that would enable him to enforce threats against them or deliver on promises to them. The tendency will be for them to drag their heels until 2008, hoping that a ‘sensitive’ Democrat will thereafter occupy the White House.

Between now and then, Democrats will continue to exploit every opening against the President. The Wall Street Journal speculates that Senator Feingold’s motion to censure the President was more than a solo, empty gesture. The Journal editorial board expects that, if Democrats become the majority in either house, they will institute impeachment proceedings as retribution for the action against President Clinton.

No tenable legal basis exists for impeachment, but the administration can still be tied down for many months responding to endless Congressional committee information requests, while the President’s popularity might sag still further.

While that may be winning politics, it would leave the United States with its throat bared for beheading by Al Queda.

Thomas E. Brewton is a staff writer for the New Media Alliance, Inc. The New Media Alliance is a non-profit (501c3) national coalition of writers, journalists and grass-roots media outlets.

His weblog is THE VIEW FROM 1776

About The Author Thomas E. Brewton:
Thomas E. Brewton is a staff writer for the New Media Alliance, Inc. The New Media Alliance is a non-profit (501c3) national coalition of writers, journalists and grass-roots media outlets.

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