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Ben Rhodes on American Stupidity

According to David Samuels' New York Times profile of Ben Rhodes, deputy national security adviser for strategic communications, Rhodes considers discourse about American foreign policy to be largely irrational:

When I suggested that all this dark metafictional play seemed a bit removed from rational debate over America’s future role in the world, Rhodes nodded. “In the absence of rational discourse, ...."
For Rhodes, who wrote much of the I.S.G. [the bipartisan Iraq Study Group] report, the Iraq war was proof, in black and white, not of the complexity of international affairs or the many perils attendant on political decision-making but of the fact that the decision-makers were morons. ... He had also developed a healthy contempt for the American foreign-policy establishment, including editors and reporters at The New York Times, The Washington Post, The New Yorker and elsewhere, who at first applauded the Iraq war and then sought to pin all the blame on Bush and his merry band of neocons when it quickly turned sour. ...
“I mean, I’d prefer a sober, reasoned public debate, after which members of Congress reflect and take a vote,” he [Rhodes] said, shrugging. “But that’s impossible.”
- David Samuels, The Aspiring Novelist Who Became Obama’s Foreign-Policy Guru, New York Times Magazine, May 5, 2016


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