Stop the WordPresses! A positive story on Hillary Clinton on Plunderbund. I gotta do it. I totally agree with her here:

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton urged President George W. Bush on Monday to boycott the Beijing Olympics opening ceremonies this summer unless China improves human rights.

The problem, of course, is that we are essentially mortgaged as a country to China at this point. They’ve financed our ability to give tax cuts to the rich during a war. They hold the paper. We’ve not got much leverage. Bush basically has to go…and smile.

I also disagree with Obama on this in that we “shouldn’t politicize the Olympics because it is about bringing us together“. That’s all well and good, but when you have a participant who is not playing along nicely…you stop playing nice and you start forcing them to listen. The Olympics and the world stage is the perfect place to do this.

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  • Does she have a specific goal for China? China must “improve human rights” is kind of generic.

    Do they need to release some politcal prisoners?

    Pull their troops out of Tibet?

  • Modern Esquire

    Dude, you know April’s Fools is on the First and not the Seventh, right?

    I’m stunned beyond words…

    Yeah, Joseph we all know how specific Obama is on foreign policy matters. Here’s what Obama’s website says about China:
    “work to ensure that China plays by international rules”

    That’s it. What international rules? How will we “work to ensure” they play by them? What will we do if they don’t? Could you get any more generic than that?

    You can’t be the leader of the free world while at the same time afraid to take action because it might “offend” a country like China. To me, it’s a non-brainer, and one in which I think most people would agree Obama is wrong on.

  • I think you can leave the specificity to a summit or something. It’s good enough to say that China needs to get better or they don’t deserve to be on the world stage. The decision to even have the Olympics there was poor.

  • Well it’s kind of late now.

    China is going to be on the world stage. The Olympics are going to go on with or without George Bush’s attendance at the opening ceremonies.

    It seems like there are a lot better ways to push the Chinese to improve their human rights practices- like boycotting Walmart and their chinese-made crap.

    Also, it would be pretty hypocritical for Bush to boycott anything in China given that his administration has consistently shown that it really doesn’t care about human rights in the US (torture, guantanamo, patriot act, gay rights, reproductive rights, etc.) let alone the rest of the world.

  • @3: Agreed. It’s the reason we need a new generation of leadership in Washington and a new foreign policy. I don’t expect Bush to do a damned thing about China.

    Not buying cheap crap made in China at Wal-Mart is also a great idea.

    I don’t view it as either/or, but all. We should do all of these things, including protesting China being a host of a sporting event that is said to “bring people together in peace to respect universal moral principles.”

    How do we respect universal moral principles if we turn a blind eye to a host country and their human rights abuses?

    I continue to support a boycott and will not support these games in any way. Whether or not they will go on or not doesn’t really matter. What matters is exercising the right to make a statement, both personally and as a nation. You are right that the larger statement is economic and we should make that along with the symbolic.

  • The other big reason Bush isn’t going to do anything to piss off China?

    We borrowed A LOT of money from them to finance his war in Iraq.

  • @5: Exactly. Made that point in the original post.

  • @2: Assuming you are responding to the first comment here. For some reason your comment got caught up in spam (swear I didn’t list you).

    I’m happy to agree with you and Hillary here and I really wish Obama would be more forceful in this regard.

    As long as we’re doing the “what’s on their website” routine though, I couldn’t find one mention of China anywhere on Hillary’s site. Maybe you can help me out. She doesn’t even appear to want to “work to ensure that China plays by international rules.”

  • @2: PS – “I’m stunned beyond words…” seems like a bit much. 😉

  • I guess you did make that point. But it certainly does deserve repeating because it isn’t something that’s going to go away any time soon.

    The next president- and probably many presidents after him/her – are going to be faced with the same issue thanks to Bush.

    None of the candidates has a good answer on how to deal with the China/Tibet conflict because it’s much more complex than the US simply trying not to “offend” them.

  • #9 – I guess he was just temporarily ‘stunned’ because he quickly recovered and wrote three paragraphs full of words immediately after.

    🙂

    p.s. I look forward to having modern back on our side…

  • Interesting email from Redstate.com just now:

    Dear RedState Reader,

    We at RedState find ourselves in the nearly unique position of agreeing with Hillary Clinton and Nancy Pelosi. Like stopped clocks, we think they can be right twice in a day and their minute has come. President Bush should not go to Peking for the Olympics.

    Unfortunately, there will be a visceral reaction by some on the right because Nancy Pelosi and Hillary Clinton are calling for the same thing. There should not be. In fact, the right, which has spent the better part of the last hundred years fighting for freedom around the world, should own this issue. The Chinese autocrats are ruthless dictators seeking international legitimacy despite the terror they pour into Tibet and the human rights abuses they encourage in their own country.

    We know some on the right who tend to view the world mostly in economic terms will disagree with us. Yes, we recognize that China is a large trading partner. We recognize how much of our debt they hold. We also recognize the arguments of some that if the President were to go, the media would be inclined to shed the spotlight on China’s abuses.

    None of these arguments contradict the fact that our President, who has spent eight years liberating parts of the world from tyranny, should not give the seal of approval on China’s behavior — approval his presence at the Olympics would most certainly give to the Chinese people.

    We’re under no delusions. The Olympic organizers themselves put the world in this position. They wanted to welcome China into the new millennium by embracing them as some part of the modern world — a distinction the Olympics could supposedly give. They turned a blind eye to China’s human rights abuses and the chickens are now coming home to roost.

    If American athletes want to compete in China, we wish them well and hope they crush their Chinese opponents under the heavy weight of many gold medals. But we call on the President of the United States of America to personally boycott Peking during the Olympics. His presence would serve as a propaganda tool for the regime just as assuredly the lack of his presence will be noticed by the freedom loving people of China suffering Peking’s communist boot on the back of their necks.

    Should you want to join us, we would encourage you to sign our petition by clicking here.

    All the best,

    Erick Erickson
    Editor, RedState.com

  • I’m not sure I’d want to side with some guy who really thinks George Bush “has spent eight years liberating parts of the world from tyranny.”

  • Also… is Erick Erickson (if that IS his real name) so afraid of foreign stuff that he has to use the romanized version of the city name?

    Is Beijing so hard to pronounce?

  • It is a shame that the athletes who trained so hard to get to the Olympics will get caught up in this garbage.

  • @15: Yes. Preventing war also puts M-16 factory workers out of a job. Sigh. I’ll take “No War” for 1,000 please Alex.

    To blame is the committee that thought China deserved to be a host country. I mean, why not Iran? Would it just be a “sporting event” if it were held in Tehran? How low do you want the bar to be?

    That said, yes, it is a shame they’ll get caught up. I hope our athletes will be aware enough to make their own statement in some way.

    I certainly don’t think protesting human rights abuses is “garbage”, but understand how a “conservative” might think so. I guess you don’t have to fight the power when you are it. It was also nice of you to label all people willing to protest “jobless”. Glad to see you playing the class warfare game.

    You should also learn more about “this Tibet thing” before forming opinions about the relative worth of protesting China’s actions related to the issue. Human rights should not be viewed as a liberal cause.

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