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"America has two great dominant strands of political thought - conservatism, which, at its very best, draws lines that should not be crossed; and progressivism, which, at its very best, breaks down barriers that should never have been erected." -- Bill Clinton, Dedication of the Clinton Presidential Library, November 2004

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Thursday, July 31, 2003


Dean Not 'Soft' on National Defense

posted by Christopher at Thursday, July 31, 2003 permalink View blog reactions
Slate's take on Howard Dean demonstrates how Dean's nuanced position on national security can win people over - especially convincing those still on the fence of his foreign policy credentials. This short column dissects his position on foreign policy and shows that Howard Dean is not just "anti-war," but rather for ensuring that the use of force is justified in all instances. The line on Dean from his primary rivals (and surely the Bush camp) is that Dean is soft on defense... a bona fide "dove."

Dean's positions are more complex than either being "against" or "for" military action. Rather, there is a set of ideals and some principle behind his positions on foreign policy.


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Nation-Building was founded by Aziz Poonawalla in August 2002 under the name Dean Nation. Dean Nation was the very first weblog devoted to a presidential candidate, Howard Dean, and became the vanguard of the Dean netroot phenomenon, raising over $40,000 for the Dean campaign, pioneering the use of Meetup, and enjoying the attention of the campaign itself, with Joe Trippi a regular reader (and sometime commentor). Howard Dean himself even left a comment once. Dean Nation was a group weblog effort and counts among its alumni many of the progressive blogsphere's leading talent including Jerome Armstrong, Matthew Yglesias, and Ezra Klein. After the election in 2004, the blog refocused onto the theme of "purple politics", formally changing its name to Nation-Building in June 2006. The primary focus of the blog is on articulating purple-state policy at home and pragmatic liberal interventionism abroad.