Monday, June 2, 2014

Remember when American foreign policy was not actually insane?

Whenever the standard of freedom and Independence has been or shall be unfurled, there will her heart, her benedictions and her prayers be. But she goes not abroad, in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all. She the champion and vindicator only of her own.
She well knows that by once enlisting under other banners than her own, were they even the banners of foreign independence, she would involve herself beyond the power of extrication, in all the wars of interest and intrigue, of individual avarice, envy, and ambition, which assume the colors and usurp the standard of freedom.
- John Quincy Adams on American Foreign Policy, 1821
Just something for you Americans to contemplate as your country continues to pour trillions of dollars into senseless foreign wars, that are enriching a few politically-connected profiteers ($500/gallon gasoline, anyone?  And we are talking about WAY more than one gallon..) while bleeding your overall economy dry.  
As the average American becomes ever poorer, and you are told over and over again that 'entitlements' are the problem, just think about all that money that was spent blowing up a few wedding parties on the other side of the planet...  and you didn't even win!  Remember that as your social security payments are sliced ever thinner, and medical care becomes increasingly a luxury for the rich only, and bridges and roads go to rot, and beggars and the homeless increasingly line the roads...
Iraq and Afghanistan and Libya and Syria etc.etc. are not Pyrrhic victories (i.e., victories achieved at an excessive cost) - they are Pyrrhic defeats!  I mean, if the goal was to lose surely it could have been done with less blood and treasure.
If you Americans had only spent it on domestic follies - like bridges to nowhere - at least the money would have been recycled in your own economy... and who knows, perhaps someday that bridge to nowhere will lead somewhere.  But these foreign wars are worse: a large fraction of that money was spent overseas, where it leaves the US economy entirely.  Think about the difference between blood circulating around within your own body, and blood draining out onto the street.  Not the same thing, is it?
And of course, you Americans now have a large number of dual-citizens whose loyalty may well lie elsewhere, and at the highest levels of government and industry.  Yeah, that's going to work out well when times get tough, sure.
If you aren'y angry then you are either not paying attention or you are profoundly stupid.  A cynic once said that the problem with democracy is that the people get the government that they deserve.  
Insouciance is not the answer.  President Barack "Magic Sparkle Pony" Obama and his oligarch-approved successor do not care about you and your family.  Perhaps it's time that you did?

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