Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Hugh Hewitt Gets Booed Pressing Ben Carson

It was a great moment-as I don't like Hugh Hewitt

"Conservative radio host and debate questioner Hugh Hewitt was booed by the debate audience crowd when he asked Dr. Ben Carson about whether he'd be willing to kill innocent civilians during a time of war."

"We're talking about ruthless things tonight. Carpet bombing, toughness, war, and people wonder, could you do that? Could you order airstrikes that would kill innocent children, not scores but hundreds and thousands. Could you wage war as a commander in chief?" Hewitt asked.

"Carson responded that when he would operate on children, they often did not like him when he said he needed to remove a tumor."

"Later on, they really realize what's going on and by the same token you have to be able to look at the big picture and understand it's actually merciful if you go ahead and finish the job rather than death by a thousand pricks," Carson said.

"So you are OK with the death of thousands of innocent children and civilians?" Hewitt asked.

The audience let out a loud boo.

"You got it," Carson said, chuckling and gesturing to the crowd.

"That is what war... can you be as ruthless as Churchill was in prosecuting the Nazis?" Hewitt pressed on.

"Ruthless is not the word I would use. Tough, resolute, understanding that the job of the president of the United States is to protect the people of this country and do what is necessary in order to get it done," Carson replied.

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Note that Hewitt also gave life to the fallacy that we're in war like we were against the Nazis. Josh Marshall notes the absurdity:

"The mix of hyperbole, fear, demands for people to be more afraid is simply crazy. You get used to it if you watch this campaign day in and day out. But it's worth stepping back and just recognizing that. We're not in World War III. ISIS will not destroy America. ISIS is not the most sophisticated terrorist group in history."

It's funny but this main stage debate has been sort of dull in long stretches-in some ways the first one was punchier and better. Nothing gets Lindsay Graham going like boots on the ground.

A highlight of the debate was the all Cuban battle between Rubio and Cruz.
It seems to me that the Cruz-Rubio standoff is in some ways endemic of the entire insider-outsider debate. The outsiders are considered to be more extreme and on the Right. But they-Trump, Cruz, Carson, Santorum in the earlier debate-are less Neocon. They aren't obsessed with more and more boots on the ground and more and more foreign intervention. 

When they want to talk tough on terrorism it's more about border security. I'm obviously not for Trump's Muslim ban or anything like that. But I'm not a huge fan of the eagerness of folks like Graham-who actually said he misses George W. Bush tonight-for more and more military adventurism either. 

Rand Paul too hit Rubio on his amnesty after Rubio was going after Cruz and Rand on that bill to cut the government's surveillance powers. 

Trump too is not a huge fan of more US foreign military involvement. The desire for regime change is in the Establishment. 

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