Strategy and timing are the Himalayas of marketing. Everything else is the Catskills

Perrspectives on the Rove legacy, The Base Politics of Karl Rove

But those accounts fail to capture the enduring dark cloud that Karl Rove has cast over the American political landscape. His grim legacy is certainly not about public policy (about which he cared little) or even about winning and losing (about which he cared a great deal). No, the indelible mark of Karl Rove is the permanent transformation and debasement of American politics itself.

Lots of good background. If you have a friend who asks what was so bad about Unka Karl you’ll be able to find plenty of examples. Politics has been pretty rough from even the days of George Washington and Tom Jefferson and the guys back in the day. Maybe Karl took it as a challenge to make it more vicious then ever.

This is odd, Iranian Unit to Be Labeled ‘Terrorist’

The United States has decided to designate Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps, the country’s 125,000-strong elite military branch, as a “specially designated global terrorist,” according to U.S. officials, a move that allows Washington to target the group’s business operations and finances.

Maybe this is actually a partical move. Though this seems odd too since the administration can monitor and otherwise undermine Iranian monies without this headline grabbing annoucement. It also smacks of a certain slight of hand. We just recently learned or rather it was further confirmed most foriegn fighters in Iraq come from Saudi Arabia, Most Outside Insurgents in Iraq Come from Saudi Arabia

Now it turns out that Saudi Arabia is also home to the largest number of so-called “foreign fighters” in Iraq, despite administration efforts — aided by many in the media — to paint Iran and Syria as the main outside culprits there.

The Los Angeles Times reports today that according to a senior U.S. military officer and Iraqi lawmakers, about 45% of all foreign militants “targeting U.S. troops and Iraqi civilians and security forces are from Saudi Arabia.” Only 15% are from Syria and Lebanon; and 10% are from North Africa. This is based on official U.S. military figures made available to newspaper by the senior officer.

This presents another problem or lesson in Republican framing. Democrats can’t get away with much subtlety in weighing in about stepping up tensions between the U.S. and Iran. Somebody in the Democrats quick response foreign policy team might want to get to work on the very careful wording to respond. One thing for certain is there is no urgent or compelling reason for Bush to do this now. He’s been failing in Iraq for over five years and the Taliban runs more of Afghanistan then U.S. forces one thing Bush cannot handle is another front (Truck Bombs Kill 175 in Iraq’s North) in the war on terror that has spread so wide he already feels compelled to place every American under suspicion. Bush rolling out a new product in August

Another reason for a certain level of cynicism is that Bush made his “Axis of Evil” speech in late 2000 if memory serves, with the implication that Iran was somehow connected to same school of terrorism as al-Queda. Now here we are six years later and The Decider decides to make it official.

“Strategy and timing are the Himalayas of marketing. Everything else is the Catskills.” – Al Ries