On Sunday, new Secretary of State John Kerry starts a tour of nine countries in Europe and the Middle East; the State Department calls it a “listening tour.” Yet, while listening is part of diplomacy, it can’t substitute for policy, especially in the case of the only superpower. Leaders of smaller nations might need the occasional “listening” trip to brush up their knowledge of issues and regions, but a superpower is supposed to have eyes and ears everywhere all the time, thanks to a vast and expensive diplomatic network. That Kerry might need an educational tour is doubly puzzling,
I hate the whole concept of listening tors.It´s nothing but hogwash disguised as looking busy. If we had a strong foreign policy,we´d be trying to convince other countries this is the right way to go instead the left takes the reactionary approach. Most of the time,I´ll bet the listening tours are an excuse to beg for more foreign aid.
What ever happened to Embassy Row in DC? Shouldn´t a foreign ambassador meet with the new SofS in Kerry´s impressive office? They would discuss key issues and possible solutions, and then this senior diplomat would brief his home country on these discussions before Kerry flew to the foreign country. In turn, Kerry´s staff would then prepare briefing books for his future meetings in that country. Foreign affairs, from trade to terrorism, would seem to serious to be done as "listening tours" for Kerry´s on the job training.
In the Magic Kingdom of Leftist fantasy ideology a "listening tour" is a symbolic, submissive, sacrificial gesture, a piece of geopolitical performance art, intended to win friends and influence enemies. Traipsing around with snout and tail down, ready to roll over at any time and expose the underbelly, is supposed to convey humility, friendliness and lack of aggressive intent. It is supposed to make foreigners like the United States of America.
This sort of naive, effeminate, sophomoric political co-dependency is about as far as permanent adolescents like Kerry and the rest of the gruesome gang of celebrity Democrats have ever gotten. They don´t understand people, including themselves. They don´t know how the world works. They are just playing at being Somebody Important, like children dressing up in grownup clothes.
Children ought to be allowed to have their fun - but permitting them to play president, Secretary of State, and other roles of importance that require maturity and judgment is a big, dangerous, unnecessary risk.
Hillary created the ´listening tour´ style in 2000, when she ran for the U.S. senate from NY. By doing the listening tour, she could prop her big butt up in a chair, and give her bucktoothed smile, as the commoners genuflected before her, to tell her their problems. She didn´t talk hardly at all, except to promise 200,000 ´good paying manufacturing jobs´ for upstate NY. That, of course, never happened, although her PR person, a couple of years later, pointed out that her office had suggested selling stuff on ebay as a way to make money. Kerry cannot articulate a rational, integrated foreign policy because the kenyan klown prince occupying the white house has no such thing.
From what I have read, obama is not well treated when HE tours. When he was in burma, a far-east group had a meeting (Japan and China were in this group)and told obama he was not invited. Similar things have been happening around the world and ONLY if you read foreign press are you allowed to know this. Our local "news"organs don´t report news. I´m pretty sure the rest of the world, especially our savage enemies, realize kerry the gigolo cannot be taken seriously. And, although the teenage girls on nantucket find kerry a real party animal, I don´t think the adults in the rest of the world will feel the same
Re #12...You forgot to mention that America´s new French speaking Secretary of State, "honored" with his very own special picture/exhibit in the Communist War Remnants Museum in downtown Ho Chi Minh City, also served with "great distinction" in the rice paddies of Cambodia during his world renowned four month "tour of duty" in Southeast Asia.
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