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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, August 28, 2003


Dean alters Cuba stand

posted by Aziz P. at Thursday, August 28, 2003 permalink View blog reactions
Speaking to reporters during a four-day national campaign swing, Dean said he supports rolling back the embargo in order to encourage human-rights advancements -- but citing Fidel Castro's recent crackdowns on dissidents, says that in recent months he has become convinced that ``we can't do it right now.''

Dean called Cuba a ''political question,'' and said that recent developments on the island would prevent him from his goal of ``constructive engagement of Cuba.''

''If you would have asked me six months ago, I would have said we should begin to ease the embargo in return for human-rights concessions,'' he said, responding to a question from a Herald reporter at a dinner Sunday night in Seattle. ``But you can't do it now because Castro has just locked up a huge number of human-rights activists and put them in prison and [held] show trials. You can't reward that kind of behavior if what you want to do is link human-rights behavior with foreign trade.''

This follows from his assertion of a moral-guided foreign policy. I don't think thhat human rights are as realistic a leverage when applied to China, but with Cuba it certainly is reasonable to make them a condition. Dean is demonstrating his adaptibility, not an ideological position on Cuba (whch is what almost everyone else does, in an attempt to maximize political gain with the Cuban exile bloc).


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About Nation-Building

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.