Allow me to test some ideas by means of a kind of thought experiment. Image that I was to sit down with a group of Chinese Communist leaders. And imagine that I was to ask them—off the record—whether it was a good policy or not for the United States to undertake massive social spending in the midst of a deep recession. Imagine further that I was to ask these socialists whether accumulating debt for “healthcare reform,” and undertaking trillion dollar deficits would harm America productivity. What do you imagine a boardroom full of Red Chinese Economic Wonks would answer?
As usual, the US is desiring to do the right thing in the wrong way.
With the recent political embarrassments in Afghanistan and Iraq, we are now faced with the unpleasant consequences of having undertaken nation building before having fully defeated our enemies.
I have to keep this short because it is nearly 3:00am and I have an early meeting tomorrow. Just returned from a long day in San Francisco which began with the sentencing hearing of my friend Walter Hoye. Walter was arrested last year for violating Oakland’s newly enacted “bubble” statute, which prohibits approaching, without permission, within eight feet of anyone entering an abortion clinic. The law is modeled after the Colorado statute upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court in Hill v. Colorado in 2000. Anyway, Walter was convicted in January of two counts of violating the statute – each of which carry a maximum penalty of a $2000 fine and/or one year in jail.
After the Second Battle of Newbury in 1644, (a pivotal battle during the English Civil War), it became clear that some commanders in the Parliamentary Army which had been formed to preserve ancient English liberties against the encroachment of authoritarian power, were only fighting in a half-hearted way.
It was after this battle, that Oliver Cromwell and other great Puritan captains realized that the Charles I, King of England and Scotland, had been intentionally allowed to escape almost certain defeat. Some Parliamentary soldiers in high places were not fighting for victory so much as a political compromise that would return Charles to the throne of England, with only modest revisions of his power status quo ante bellum.
There is inescapable fact in human history, something the foolish Green Aristocracy cannot fathom.
Nations and people are in competition with one another. And those who are effete, delusional and weak, will be overwhelmed and supplanted by those who hold to the messy facts of existence: things like crying babies, sweat equity, and the rugged elation of making and building things with callous hands.
Confronted with unsavory choices regarding the deteriorating war in Afghanistan, President Barack Obama is contemplating offering a cash incentive to Taliban soldiers in order to encourage them to lay down their arms. Boy, how I hope his strategy works!
Unlike our secular-humanist President, however, I am not disposed to believe, like democrats, that the cure to all policy hiccoughs and inconvenient truths, is to throw money at problems. This is the naïveté of materialist assumptions about man and what motivates people at the most basic level.
Forgive me for elucidating on this famous maxim: "The Constitution is not a suicide pact,” but there has been some discussion circulating on the web about this expression.
The statement became currency after Justice Robert Jackson's decent in the Terminiello case where race baiters had assembled and began to stir up so much trouble that they were shut down. This of course gave rise to a First Amendment Free Speech question. Jackson had been the United States Prosecutor in the famous Nuremburg Trials. He had left the court temporarily at the request of the President to prosecute Reich Marshal Herman Goering among other nefarious Nazi war criminals.
My support for Lt. General Stanley McChrystal is not partisan. No one should turn to partisanship arguments regarding a war of such magnitude and seriousness. There are only two important questions to ask: is McChrystal's assessment accurate? Second, are his criticisms within the constraints and scope of his duty to the Constitution and to the Commander-In-Chief?
I believe the answer to both questions is, "yes."
America needed more forthrightness from the Pentagon earlier in its War Against Terror- certainly more than our country received under the feckless President George Bush II.
It was "cash for clunkers.” Now its washing machines.
If destroying property creates wealth, (it employs autoworkers and auto dealerships--and now appliance manufacturers), why not just ante up, drink deep the magic potion of recovery-- and torch all the cities in United States! Image the number of jobs we'd create rebuilding urban America!
I NEVER imagined that when we bombed Tokyo or Dresden into ashes during the Second World War that we were really delivering to them major injections of economic stimulus. In retrospect, we now may classify these sickening tragedies as Obama Recovery Plans.