High life

You can't make friends with Uncle Sam and survive for long

The record of American-backed rulers in the Middle East makes Putin look good

30 August 2014

9:00 AM

30 August 2014

9:00 AM

Can somebody tell me when America last got it right? Uncle Sam’s track record in selecting leaders in faraway places reminds me very much of my own where libel is concerned: plaintiffs 5; Taki 0. Let’s see, the good Uncle overthrew Mohammad Mosaddegh in Iran back in the early 1950s in order for the Shah to become his man in Persia. The Shah went gallivanting in St Moritz, threw very expensive parties in Persepolis and spent money like a Saudi camel driver-turned-prince on American weapons. But once the Shah became a pariah, the Home of the Brave chickened out. The Shah became Shah who? Only Henry Kissinger admitted knowing him and even managed to get him a bed in a cancer hospital.

What about the Diem family before that? They were bosom buddies with Eisenhower and the Kennedys until insiders in Washington started to talk down Madame (Diem’s sister-in-law) Nhu’s habit of spending lotsa moolah while Buddhist monks ignited themselves in protest against her Catholicism and corruption. The Diems were slain by generals who had been given the go-ahead by JFK, whose life was also terminated three weeks later. And America’s man in Panama, old Pineapple Face, was overthrown by Papa Bush once it became obvious he was selling happy dust to gringos, the very same dust George W. must have been on when he invaded Iraq in order to make Israel safe to bomb women and children in Gaza.

Nah, I’d rather be an enemy than a friend where America is concerned. Netanyahu craps on American presidents and gets three billion smackers annually in return. And just look at the camel drivers. They sponsor terrorism everywhere with their financing of schools that teach how to kill the infidel, and the Yankees openly genuflect in front of them almost as much as the Brits do. Not to mention the Qataris, who paid Islamic State cold hard cash to get them going in their chopping-off-heads business. There is no end in sight. As they say, Washington doesn’t know its ass from a hole in the ground, but it means well. The folly of forcing freedom on those who don’t want it makes Americans feel good when they get home and turn on the TV. Nothing is as important as that.


Which brings me to old Vlad the Impaler — no, not the Romanian Count Dracula, but Vladimir Putin, the man everyone in America and Europe hates, which is very good news for Russia. Putin is neither Shah nor Diem, and no Pineapple Face either. He will go on the offensive at any sign of foreign interference. What the bureaucrooks of the EU forget is that economic embargoes and trade sanctions are a form of strategic warfare. Washington can push small Central American countries around, as the EU did with Austria when it tried to go to the right some time ago, but Russia is now a strong state again that takes neither crap nor outside interference. And many Russians are eager for revenge in what they see as a humiliation after the fall of communism.

Putin’s annexation of Crimea made him a hero in many Russian eyes. Now that America and the EU see him as the baddest guy on the planet, Putin’s theory that America uses its power to foment revolution has come full circle. He knows that one cannot be Washington’s friend and survive for long. He also knows that America uses covert force against regimes it doesn’t like. He most likely thinks that Uncle Sam covertly financed the jihadists in Chechnya. And why is that so crazy? Uncle Sam financed the Taleban against the Soviets and gave them missiles that are still used against American and Nato troops in that miserable country, Afghanistan. He also knows the neocons in Washington rule the roost and want him encircled and humiliated.

The trouble is that Putin is no Saddam. Even Assad was no Saddam. So the neocons, in cahoots with the EU crooks, have declared an undeclared war on Putin’s Russia, one that doesn’t exactly make the Kremlin shake in fear. After the Cold War was over, George Kennan, an expert’s expert on the Soviet Union, fiercely opposed the eastward expansion of Nato and other measures that would take advantage of Russia’s weakness. He also advised against humiliating a great country such as Russia, whose soul is somehow different from that of, say, Puerto Rico or Monaco. Kennan also fulminated against America’s hypocrisy. He insisted that America should put its own house in order first — I write this as Ferguson, Missouri, burns — and become a republic known for its decency and humanity and social success. Putin has read Kennan and looks at Brussels the way I look at the Papandreou clan in my own country, as a bunch of midgets who couldn’t punch their way out of a wet paper bag.

And, while I’m at it, I am a great admirer of Radek Sikorski, who has good reason to distrust the Russkies. But he should not count on any help from Brussels or the Americans. They will both sell Poland out quicker than you can say Munich. Our problems here in the West have nothing to do with Russia, but with the inability of anyone except Rod Liddle in these here pages to tell the truth. Removing kosher food from shelves had nothing to do with us Christians. So why doesn’t Stephen Pollard say so? It’s the Muslim extremists among us who are causing all the mess, not the Russians nor the Shiites.

Got something to add? Join the discussion and comment below.

You might disagree with half of it, but you’ll enjoy reading all of it. Try your first 10 weeks for just $10


Show comments
  • Individuals should reflect on the fate of the millions
    of nameless civilians who died. Many nations now salute the Unknown Soldier
    with a tomb, but no nation has honored the Unknown Civilian. Keynote Speaker Basil
    Venitis, venitis@gmail.com, http://venitism.blogspot.com

    MILITARY
    INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX

    The largest
    bribes originate in the military industry. Military procurement is a corrupt
    business from top to bottom. The process is dominated by advocacy, with few
    checks and balances. Most people in power love this system of doing business
    and do not want it changed. War and preparation for war systematically corrupt
    all parties to the state-private transactions by which the government obtains
    the bulk of its military products. There is a standard 10% bribe to kleptocrats
    for military purchases.

    Participants
    in the military industrial complex are routinely blamed for mismanagement,
    fraud, abuse, bribes, and waste. All of these unsavory actions, however, are
    typically viewed as aberrations, malfeasances to be covered-up, while retaining
    the basic system of state-private cooperation in the trade of military goods
    and services and the flow of bribes. These offenses are in reality expressions
    of a thoroughgoing, intrinsic rottenness in the entire setup.

    History teaches that Empires always devour themselves. The military
    industrial complex must be abolished. The Coalition of the Unwilling continues
    to grow. The blowback from poorly-conceived military actions no longer seems
    distant or removed.

    Scare tactics are absurd and insulting as the mushroom cloud metaphor
    brandished by Condoleezza Rice and President Bush in the fall of 2002. The bellicose rhetoric must stop.

    Little did Obama’s school boy
    chums in Hawaii, watching him race up and down the basketball court, know how
    prescient they were when they nicknamed him Barry O’Bomber!

    Lies about weapons of mass destruction are used as weapons of mass
    distraction in order to invade countries.
    George Bush and Tony Blair lied to the world in order to invade
    Iraq. This is a war crime, pure and
    simple. Nevertheless, these two war
    criminals were never sent to Hague.

    The warning that he who lives by the sword dies by the sword goes not
    only for individuals but for entire societies. It is a warning to all of us. A
    country or a society that lives with the violence of pre-emptive war in fact self-destructs.

    There are
    many warriors and worriers in Occident. Occidentals
    cannot impose democracy on Orient with iron and blood. Occidentals cannot remake the world with
    bribes and bombs! There is no reason for
    Occident to go bankrupt in order to save corrupt regimes. Let Orientals solve
    their problems themselves without foreign interference. Imperialism serves no purpose.

    The hoodwink about imaginary weapons of mass destruction is a weapon of
    mass distraction! We’ve seen this
    cry-wolf before for Iraq, and we see it now again for Iran. Warmongers cannot fool hoi polloi all time. Libertarians believe in
    a noninterventionist foreign policy. American people cannot remain free and
    prosperous with 700 military bases around the world, troops in 130 countries,
    and a steady diet of war propaganda. American military overstretch is
    undermining American national defense and bankrupting USA.

    Kleptocrats promote the elitist, racist, and war-causing Wilsonian
    doctrine of intervening abroad to impose democracy and Western culture on
    foreigners at the point of bayonets. When
    presidents misuse our military on an unprecedented scale – and Congress lets
    them get away with it – the resulting stress causes military suicides to
    increase dramatically, both among active duty and retired service members. In
    fact, military deaths from suicide far outnumber combat deaths.

    The real solution to foreign
    conflicts is for us to end all foreign aid, stop arming foreign countries,
    encourage peaceful diplomatic resolutions to conflicts, and disengage
    militarily. In others words, follow Jefferson’s admonition: Peace, commerce,
    and honest friendship with all nations, entangling alliances with none.

    Hermann Goering used to say the
    people don’t want war, but they can always be brought to the bidding of the
    leaders. This is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked,
    and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and for exposing the country
    to danger. It works the same in every country.

    Many people have the misconception
    that sanctions are an effective means to encourage a change of behavior in
    another country without war. However, imposing sanctions and blockades are not
    only an act of war according to international law, they are most often the
    first step toward a real war starting with a bombing campaign. Sanctions were
    the first step in our wars against Iraq and Libya, and now more sanctions
    planned against Syria and Iran are leading down the same destructive path.

    Nothing promotes peace better than
    free trade. Countries that trade with each other generally do not make war on
    each other, as both countries gain economic benefits they do not want to
    jeopardize. China is a massive nuclear power yet it does not seek military
    confrontation with the United States. Trade is much more profitable. Also trade
    and friendship applies much more effective persuasion to encourage better
    behavior, as does leading by example. Alarmingly, tough new sanctions are under
    consideration that would also punish Iran’s trading partners, including China,
    Russia, and possibly our NATO allies such as Germany.

    Conversely, sanctions allow regimes
    to blame their shortcomings on foreigners, thereby maintaining a hold on power.
    They rarely even inconvenience elites in the target countries. They simply
    provide a common enemy to rally the people against and undermine internal
    dissent. Consider how well the embargo has worked against Cuba. Fidel Castro
    and his regime may be annoyed by the inability to trade with their neighbors
    just 90 miles away, but American businessmen also lose out in the bargain. That
    means less jobs and less freedom at home.

    Americans have been militarily
    involved in the Persian Gulf region now for 20 years. Experts have predicted
    that the cost of this continuous and expanding war will reach 6 trillion
    dollars. The hostilities and our overt involvement in Iraq can be dated back to
    January 16th, 1991 when the defensive operation, Desert Shield, became the
    offensive operation, Desert Storm. Though the end of the Persian Gulf War was
    declared on April 6th, 1991 with a U.S. military victory, the 20 year war was
    just beginning.

    USA and Britain have had an intense
    interest in controlling the oil of the Middle East dating back to the overthrow
    of the Ottoman Empire during World War I. This interest expanded during World
    War II with FDR’s promise to protect the puppet governments in the Persian Gulf
    region, especially Saudi Arabia. Though this arrangement never sat well with
    the citizens in the region, a fairly decent relationship remained between the
    Arab people and the American public. But animosity continued to build with
    American ever-present military involvement in Iraq.

    The American military assistance to
    the Mujahedeen in the 1980s, now the Taliban, helped the Muslim defenders, one
    of whom was Osama Bin Laden, oust the Soviets from Afghanistan. At that time,
    Americans were still not seen as occupiers, and the radical Muslims, encouraged
    by the U.S., were expected to direct all their efforts toward the communist
    threat. That all changed with the breakup of the Soviet system and the end of
    the Cold War when, as the lone superpower left standing, we named ourselves the
    world policeman. It was then that the resentment by Arabs and Muslims became
    directed toward the United States, now seen as an invader and an occupier.

    Continuous bombing and crippling
    sanctions against Iraq during the 1990s, the appearance that the U.S. did not
    care about the plight of the Palestinians, and American military bases in Saudi
    Arabia, led to attention getting attacks against the United States. The 1998
    embassy attacks in Kenya and Tanzania and the attack of the U.S. Cole in the
    year 2000 were warnings that war was far from over. The horrible tragedy of
    9/11 shouldn’t have been a surprise, and many believe it was preventable.
    Currently, the war has morphed into a huge battle for control of the Persian
    Gulf region and Central Asia. This involves Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen,
    Somalia and Iran. Foolish policies lead to foolhardy conflicts.

    Foolhardy conflicts lead to
    unsustainable costs and a multitude of unintended consequences. To name a few,
    Americans have spent trillions of dollars based on the false pretense of
    defending freedom and American Constitution. The notion has been furthered
    solidified that war no longer needs to be declared by Congress, and can be
    pursued as a prerogative of the president. Americans are now seen by the world
    not as a peace maker, but rather a trouble maker and aggressor.

    Thousands of American service
    members have been killed and tens of thousands wounded with a sharp increase in
    service-connected suicides. A million veterans are seeking medical treatment
    and disability benefits. Millions of citizens have been killed, wounded, and
    displaced in the countries on the receiving end of American bombs, drones,
    sanctions, and occupation. The region has suffered huge environmental damage as
    a consequence of American military occupation.

    Christians from Iraq have suffered
    the worst rout in the history of Christendom. Iran and Iraq are now better
    allies than ever with strong anti-American sentiment. Iraqi political stability
    is a joke. Ending hostilities in Afghanistan is a dream. China and Iran have
    been drawn into a closer alliance against the United States. America’s
    uncontrolled deficits are senselessly fuelled by needless militarism. Americans are now much poorer and less safe.

    There was no Al-Qaida in Iraq before Americans invaded
    in 2003. Today, there is. No weapons of mass destruction were ever found in
    Iraq. War always leads to government growth and the sacrifice of civil
    liberties. In the past 10 years, this has been particularly costly to us, with
    the acceptance of military tribunals, torture, assassination, abuse of Habeas Corpus
    and PATRIOT-Act-type legislation.

    Senseless war and senseless destruction and death
    should not be rationalized as providing a great service in protecting American
    freedoms, American Constitution, or maintaining peace. The only value that can come of this is to
    recognize that American policies are flawed and they need to be changed.
    Without this, history will record that the sacrifices were all in vain.

    Statism needs war, a free country does not. Statism survives by
    looting; a free country survives by production.
    If men want to oppose war, it is statism
    that they must oppose. So long as they hold the tribal notion that the
    individual is sacrificial fodder for the collective, that some men have the
    right to rule others by force, and that some alleged good can justify it — there
    can be no peace within a nation
    and no peace among nations.

    Men who are free to produce, have no incentive to loot; they have
    nothing to gain from war and a great deal to lose. Ideologically, the principle
    of individual rights does not permit a man to seek his own livelihood at the
    point of a gun, inside or outside his country. Economically, wars cost money;
    in a free economy, where wealth is privately owned, the costs of war come out
    of the income of private citizens — there is no overblown public treasury to
    hide that fact — and a citizen cannot
    hope to recoup his own financial losses (such as taxes or business dislocations
    or property destruction) by winning the war. Thus his own economic interests
    are on the side of peace.

    In a free society, we are supposed
    to know the truth. In a society where truth becomes treason, however, we are in
    big trouble. The truth is that foreign spying, meddling, and outright military
    intervention in the post-World War II era has made us less secure, not more.
    And we have lost countless lives and spent trillions of euros for our trouble.
    Too often official government lies have provided justification for endless,
    illegal wars and hundreds of thousands of resulting deaths and casualties.

    Out of sight and out of mind appears to be the motto
    for most citizens. Like past imperial powers, war has become both constant and
    largely invisible. Military personnel die and funerals are held; service men
    and women are injured and families suffer. But most citizens go about their
    lives with little sense that their government is sending fellow citizens to
    kill and to die in their name.

    On the ultimate test of hawkdom, the willingness to send U.S. troops
    into harm’s way, Ronald Reagan was no bird of prey. He launched exactly one
    land war, against Grenada, whose army totaled 600 men. It lasted two days. And
    his only air war, the 1986 bombing of Libya, one day.

    He resorted to military force far less often than many of those who came
    before him or who have since occupied the Oval Office. After the 1983 assault
    on the Marine barracks in Lebanon, Reagan found no good strategic reason to
    give our regional enemies inviting U.S. targets. Whereas Bushes
    and Obama embraced the Wilsonian notion that America can help transform parts
    of the Middle East into democracies, Reagan considered the Middle East a jungle
    and Middle East politics irrational.

    In his
    celebrated essay The Stalemate Myth and the Quagmire Machine, Daniel Ellsberg
    drew out the lesson regarding the Vietnam War that came out of the 8000 pages
    of the Pentagon Papers. It was simply this: Policymakers acted without
    illusion. At every juncture they made the minimum commitments necessary to
    avoid imminent disaster, offering optimistic rhetoric but never taking steps
    that even they believed offered the prospect of decisive victory. They were
    tragically caught in a kind of no man’s land, unable to reverse a course to
    which they had committed so much but also unable to generate the political will
    to take forward steps that gave any realistic prospect of success. Ultimately,
    after years of needless suffering, their policy collapsed around them.

    The sun recently produced solar
    flares that could disrupt electronic communications. This is a reminder that
    severe solar activity would be devastating. While solar weather can cause
    severe damage to a power grid and other electronic devices, we remain
    unprotected from its effects.

    Space weather offers a preview of
    what would happen if Occident were attacked by an electromagnetic pulse (EMP)
    weapon. An EMP is a high-intensity burst of electromagnetic energy caused by
    the rapid acceleration of charged particles.
    A nuclear weapon detonated at a high altitude would send the U.S. back
    to the 18th century. Cars would not start, all power would go off, computers
    and all other electronic equipment would not work, and planes would fall from
    the sky. An EMP has the capability to produce significant damage to critical
    infrastructures and thus to the very fabric of Occidental society, as well as
    to the ability of Occident to project influence and military power.

    American national security interests
    are not served by the interventionist foreign policy mindset that has dominated
    both political parties in recent decades. He also understands that there is
    nothing conservative about incurring trillions of dollars in debt to engage in
    hopeless nation building exercises overseas.

    We can afford to have an adequate
    national defense which keeps us free and safe and keeps everybody afraid to
    throw a punch at us, as long as we don’t make some of the decisions that
    previous administrations have, which is to overextend ourselves overseas and
    think we can run foreign governments.

    Bush decided to be the mayor of Baghdad
    rather than the president of the United States. He decided to occupy Iraq and
    Afghanistan rather than reform Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. That had tremendous
    consequences. Richard Nixon said that America’s national defense needs are set
    in Moscow, meaning that we wouldn’t have to spend so much if they weren’t
    shooting at us. The guys who followed didn’t notice that the Soviet Union
    disappeared.

    Is
    there any amount of money that would satisfy the Pentagon hawks? Even if we
    were to slash our military budget in half, America easily would remain the
    world’s dominant military power. Our
    problems don’t result from a lack of spending. They result from a lack of
    vision and a profound misunderstanding of the single biggest threat to every
    American man, woman, and child: the federal debt.

    • Bonkim

      Too lengthy to read!

      • Donafugata

        And the occasional use of capitals are like green ink.

        • Donafugata

          Plus he’s a blogger, is that the sound of axes being ground?

  • Kitty MLB

    If you don’t mind this English woman ( with a few Italian genes) will say leave America
    alone. This world would most certainly be a more dangerous place without them.
    And foreign policy is always a double edged sword.. you are damned if you do and damned if you don’t. Yes, they got it wrong when choosing Obama as leader, but
    all countries in the West have been getting that wrong for a while which unfortunately
    has allowed the evil within the East to grow. But rather disingenuous of you to point
    fingers in my opinion.

    • Baron

      What evil in the East would that be, Kitty?

    • Donafugata

      You are right, Kitty.

      As my post says, I do think that US foreign policy has been disastrously simplistic, I am still glad that America has been the dominant force since 1945, well as a European anyway.

      From Korea to Iraq there is a lot of damage, stupidity rather than evil is a slim margin. Had the Soviets or Communist Chinese prevailed the world would be, to a greater or lesser degree, much worse off.

  • USA might deteriorate to the miserable level of
    Greece.

    Americans do not associate Obama with Obamageddon,
    because he’s permanently campaigning. He’s running against Obamunism and what’s
    happening! He makes Americans think that he doesn’t like what’s happening and
    he’s trying to fix Obamunism when in fact everything that’s happening is
    precisely because he wants Obamunism and has made Obamunism happen!

    The Republican Party and the Democratic Party are indistinguishable from
    one another. Both are keeping America broke. Both are keeping America at war.
    Both have trampled on the Constitution. And both are products of the same big
    money players that never change behind the scenes. It’s time to give the
    elephants and donkeys a little company. We the people are ready to let
    Washington know the two-party is over.

    Five years ago, Bill Clinton compared voting for Barack Obama to a roll of dice.
    After years of mounting debt, fewer jobs, and policies that are hostile to jobs
    creators, it’s clear that the gamble didn’t pay off. Obama’s stupid economic policies lead to depression by
    increasing regulatory costs, increasing uncertainty, ballooning the budget
    deficit, and constantly threatening higher taxes consistent with a political
    ideology which is antithetical to economic prosperity and spreads the cancer of
    socialism. USA now suffers Obamageddon!

    Obama tries to paint a happy face,
    arguing that all manner of headwinds are thwarting his plans for prosperity but
    that, nevertheless, he will vacuously assert the country is headed in the right
    direction. But take a step back and remember where Obama promised Americans
    would be. Under his trillion-dollar stimulus, he said, unemployment would never
    rise above 8 percent. He was wrong.

    Obamunism might deteriorate America to the miserable level of Greece,
    the land of kleptocracy, 23% VAT, persecution of dissident bloggers, and
    kangaroo justice. Obama’s ideological heart lies in socialism. Obama is at his core a dyed-in-the-wool socialist
    who sees the federal government as the answer to all of America’s problems.

    Obama is a great orator. Obama delivers flowery speeches and flexes
    his rhetorical muscles. It’s a talent that won him the presidency, but
    unfortunately it hasn’t won the future for the American people. And that’s
    because the President’s underlying philosophy is terribly flawed. After four
    years of a massive expansion of government, the enactment of Obamacare,
    hundreds of billions of dollars in failed stimulus spending, government
    ownership of General Motors, a Big Labor/pro-unionization onslaught, threats of
    even higher taxation, the promulgation of more unnecessary regulations, and a
    total failure to confront the entitlement challenge, the verdict is in on Obama’s
    record and the soundness of his socialist philosophy. Deficits are soaring, the
    economy is stagnant, 14 million Americans are out of work, and job growth is
    flat.

    Indeed,
    the new pseudofairness inevitably leads to bureaucratic favoritism,
    inequalities based on special interests and undue political influence. The real
    class warfare is caused by a class of governing elites, exploiting the politics
    of division to pick winners and losers in our economy and determine our
    destinies for us.

    Over the last years, we have seen Obama
    articulate many ideas and cloak himself in many different philosophies. Of
    late, he has even called himself a tax-cutter and posed as a deficit hawk, all
    while calling for massive amounts of new spending. But now he has emerged in
    his truest incarnation – a hard-line socialist to the core. Brownfield asserts this is not the way to lead
    America to prosperity, to stand the economy on its feet, or to put the millions
    of unemployed Americans back to work. Rather than make government bigger and
    more intrusive, now is the time to make it smaller and more responsible so that
    entrepreneurs can achieve what Washington cannot manufacture: new jobs, new
    ideas, and a better America for future generations. But that America is quite
    different from the one President Obama envisions.

    Alison Fraser points out there are two visions for the future of USA. Under
    one, we follow in the footsteps of miserable Greece, replete with debt crises
    and an economic and cultural meltdown and in the end, vastly higher taxes.
    Under another, we return to our smaller government roots with lower spending
    and lower taxation for all Americans, and unshackle our system of free
    enterprise so Americans from all walks of life can seize opportunity.

    Under Obama’s vision, we close our
    eyes and pretend that big government has all the answers to every risk and
    problem in society, real or perceived. Under Obama’s vision, fairness and
    prosperity come from spreading the wealth around and the government picking
    winners and losers. Crony capitalism, waste, and corruption capture the
    headlines.

    We do nothing about our entitlement
    crisis and instead pretend it doesn’t exist, while driving health care further
    into the clutches of unelected government bureaucrats and away from
    patient-centered care. Under Obama’s vision, we get crushing levels of debt or
    crippling levels of taxation, and America’s younger generations pay the price
    in terms of lost freedom, opportunity, and prosperity. Under Obama’s vision,
    we walk squarely and knowingly into a Grecian-style debt and democratic crisis.

    Americans inherit from their ancestors a glorious tradition of freedom and
    resistance to oppression. USA has long been admired by the rest of the world
    for its great example of liberty and prosperity, a light shining in the
    darkness of tyranny. But many Americans today are frustrated. The political
    choices they are offered give them no real choice at all. For all their talk of
    change, neither major political party as presently constituted challenges the
    status quo in any serious way.

    Neither party treats the Constitution with anything but contempt. Neither
    offers any kind of change in monetary policy. Neither wants to make the
    reductions in government that our crushing debt burden demands. Neither talks
    about bringing American troops home not just from Iraq but from around the
    world. USA is going bankrupt, and none of these sensible proposals are even on
    the table. This destructive bipartisan consensus has suffocated American
    political life for many years. Anyone who tries to ask fundamental questions
    instead of cosmetic ones is ridiculed or ignored.

    The free market, reviled by people who do not understand it, is the most
    just and humane economic system and the greatest engine of prosperity the world
    has ever known. We oppose the dehumanizing assumption that all issues that
    divide us must be settled at the federal level and forced on every American
    community, whether by activist judges, a power-hungry executive, or a meddling
    Congress. Libertarians believe in the humane alternative of local
    self-government, as called for in our Constitution.

    Libertarians believe that freedom is an indivisible whole, and that it includes
    not only economic liberty but civil liberties and privacy rights as well, all
    of which are historic rights that our civilization has cherished from time
    immemorial. USA is ailing. That is the bad news. The good news is that the remedy
    is so simple and attractive, a return to the principles American Founders taught
    us – respect for the Constitution, the rule of law, individual liberty, sound
    money, and a noninterventionist foreign policy.

    America is exceptional
    because it was founded upon the notion that everyone should be free to pursue
    life, liberty, and happiness. Obama believes that we should just squeeze more money out
    of those who are working. The path we are on is not sustainable, but few in
    Congress or in this Administration seem to recognize that their actions are
    endangering the prosperity of USA.

    Ronald Reagan said,
    government is not the answer to the problem, government is the problem.
    Obama believes
    government is the solution: More government, more taxes, more debt.
    What Obama fails to
    grasp is that the American system that rewards hard work is what made America
    so prosperous.

    What we need is not
    Robin Hood but Adam Smith. In the year America won its independence, Adam Smith
    described what creates the Wealth of Nations. He described a limited government that
    largely did not interfere with individuals and their pursuit of happiness.
    All that we are, all
    that we wish to be is now threatened by the notion that you can have something
    for nothing, that you can have your cake and eat it too, that you can spend a
    trillion dollars every year that you don’t have.

    Congress is debating the
    wrong things. Every
    debate in Washington is about how much to increase spending, a little or a lot. About
    how much to increase taxes, a little or a lot. Under sequestration, if
    the total government budget exceeds the annual Budget Resolution, the growth
    rate of spending is automatically reduced. The President does a big woe is us over the $1.2 trillion sequester that
    he endorsed and signed into law. Few people understand that the sequester
    doesn’t even cut any spending. It just slows the rate of growth. Even with the
    sequester, government will grow over $7 trillion over the next decade. Only in Washington could an increase of $7 trillion in
    spending over a decade be called a cut!

    So, what is Obama’s
    answer? Over the past four years he has added over $6 trillion in new debt and
    may well do the same in a second term. What solutions does he offer? He takes
    entitlement reform off the table and seeks to squeeze more money out of the
    private sector.

    Obama says he wants a
    balanced approach. What
    the country really needs is a balanced budget. Washington acts in a way that your
    family never could – they spend money they do not have, they borrow from future
    generations, and then they blame each other for never fixing the problem.

    Demand Washington change
    their ways, or be sent home. To begin with, we absolutely must pass a Balanced Budget
    Amendment to the Constitution!
    The amendment
    must include strict tax and spending limitations. Leftists complain that the budget
    can’t be balanced but if you cut just one penny from each dollar we currently
    spend, the budget would balance within six or seven years.

    Both parties have been
    guilty of spending too much, of protecting their sacred cows, of backroom deals
    in which every politician wins, but every taxpayer loses. It
    is time for a new bipartisan consensus. It
    is time Democrats admit that not every dollar spent on domestic programs is
    sacred. And it is time Republicans realize that military spending is not immune
    to waste and fraud.

    Where would we cut
    spending; well, we could start with ending all foreign aid to countries that
    are burning our flag and chanting death to America. The
    President could begin by stopping the F-16s and Abrams tanks being given to the
    radical Islamic government of Egypt.

    Not only should the
    sequester stand, many pundits say the sequester really needs to be at least $4
    trillion to avoid another downgrade of America’s credit rating.

    Both parties will have
    to agree to cut, or we will never fix our fiscal mess. Bipartisanship is not what is missing
    in Washington. Common sense is. Trillion-dollar deficits hurt us all. Printing more money to feed the
    never-ending appetite for spending hurts us all. We
    pay higher prices every time we go to the supermarket or the gas pump. The
    value of the dollar shrinks with each new day.

    Big government and debt
    are not a friend to the poor and the elderly. Big-government debt keeps the
    poor poor and saps the savings of the elderly. This massive expansion of the debt
    destroys savings and steals the value of your wages. Big government makes it more expensive
    to put food on the table. Big government is not your friend. The President
    offers you free stuff but his policies keep you poor.

    Under Obama, the ranks
    of America’s poor swelled to almost 1 in 6 people last year, reaching a new
    high as long-term unemployment left millions of Americans struggling and out of
    work. The
    cycle must be broken. The
    willpower to do this will not come from Congress. It must come from the
    American people.

    Only through lower
    taxes, less regulation, and more freedom will the economy begin to grow again.
    The only stimulus ever
    proven to work is leaving more money in the hands of those who earned it!

    Washington
    could use a good dose of transparency, which is why we should fight back
    against middle of the night deals that end with massive bills no one has read. We must continue
    to fight for legislation that forces Congress to read the bills!
    We must continue to
    object when Congress sticks special interest riders on bills in the dead of
    night!

    And if Congress refuses
    to obey its own rules, if Congress refuses to pass a budget, if Congress
    refuses to read the bills, then sweep the place clean. Limit their terms and
    send them home!

    There can be no liberty
    when the executive branch and the legislative branch are combined. Separation
    of powers is a bedrock principle of our Constitution. The people are crying out for change.
    They are asking for us to hear their voices, to fix our broken system, to right
    our economy and to restore their liberty.

    America has much
    greatness left in her. We will begin to thrive again when we begin to believe
    in ourselves again, when we regain our respect for our founding documents, when
    we balance our budget, when we understand that capitalism and free markets and
    free individuals are what creates our nation’s prosperity.

    • Baron

      Basil, you better get used to it, the American dreams’s over, not unlike the demise of the age of the British, the fall of the curtains for the Republic will drag on, but the rigor mortis has began, and it has nothing to do with the election of the messiah.

      Paradoxically, it’s the near miraculous success of the free market model that engendered it, the Republic’s unwashed, as a tribe and increasingly individually, are not as hungry as those of the lands of the Dragon. That makes the difference, for it’s hunger than makes people work harder, think more, feel less.

      • Donafugata

        Good response, Baron.

  • Baron

    When it comes down to it, you really can write sensible stuff, Taki, and be right and witty at the same time.

    The one minor player you haven’t mentioned, in the sorry saga of the boil Ukrainian, is the chocolate magnate Poroshenko, curently in vogue in Washington. How long has he got before the Americans lose interest, dump him?

  • Government will collapse under its
    own weight. Government is the #1 enemy of the people and the source of all
    major problems of humanity. Anarchy is
    the best political system. Keynote Speaker Basil Venitis, venitis@gmail.com, http://venitism.blogspot.com

    It
    is simply not possible to be a little bit pregnant. One must be for government,
    or one must be against it; one thing or the other. The choice is binary. Human
    nature demands nothing less than a complete elimination of government.

    In
    an anarchist society, harmony would be obtained, not by submission to law, or
    by obedience to any authority, but by free arrangements concluded between the
    various groups, territorial and professional, freely constituted for the sake
    of production and consumption, as also for the satisfaction of the infinite
    variety of needs and aspirations of a civilized being.

    Freely
    constituted groups and the free arrangements concluded between them is bigger
    than any doctrinaire attempt to pigeonhole such groups and arrangements as
    business firms operating in the cash nexus or moneyless collectives.

    Anarchy
    is characterized above all by a faith in human creativity and agency, and an
    unwillingness to let a priori theoretical formulations either preempt either
    perceptions of the particularity and is-ness of history, or to interfere with
    the ability of ordinary, face-to-face groupings of people on the spot to
    develop workable arrangements—whatever they may be—among themselves.

    If
    we really want to understand the moral grounds of economic life and, by
    extension, human life, we must start with the very small things: the everyday
    details of social existence, the way we treat our friends, enemies, and children—often
    with gestures so tiny that we ordinarily never stop to think about them at all.
    Anthropology has shown us just how different and numerous are the ways in which
    humans have been known to organize themselves. But it also reveals some
    remarkable commonalities.

    Anarchism
    is, above all else, human-centered. It entails a high regard for human agency
    and reasonableness. Rather than fitting actual human beings into some idealized
    paradigm, anarchists display an openness to—and celebration of—whatever humans
    may actually do in exercising that agency and reasonableness. Anarchy isn’t
    what people will do after the Revolution, when some sort of New Anarchist Man
    has emerged who can be trusted with autonomy; it’s what they do right now. Anarchists
    are simply people who believe human beings are capable of behaving in a
    reasonable fashion without having to be forced to.

    At
    their very simplest, anarchist beliefs turn on to two elementary assumptions.
    The first is that human beings are, under ordinary circumstances, about as
    reasonable and decent as they are allowed to be, and can organize themselves
    and their communities without needing to be told how. The second is that power
    corrupts. Most of all, anarchism is just a matter of having the courage to take
    the simple principles of common decency that we all live by, and to follow them
    through to their logical conclusions. Odd though this may seem, in most
    important ways you are probably already an anarchist — you just don’t realize
    it.

    Let’s
    start by taking a few examples from everyday life.

    If
    there’s a line to get on a crowded bus, do you wait your turn and refrain from
    elbowing your way past others even in the absence of police?

    If
    you answered “yes”, then you are used to acting like an anarchist! The most
    basic anarchist principle is self-organization: the assumption that human
    beings do not need to be threatened with prosecution in order to be able to
    come to reasonable understandings with each other, or to treat each other with
    dignity and respect….

    To
    cut a long story short: anarchists believe that for the most part it is power
    itself, and the effects of power, that make people stupid and irresponsible.

    Are
    you a member of a club or sports team or any other voluntary organization where
    decisions are not imposed by one leader but made on the basis of general
    consent?

    If
    you answered “yes”, then you belong to an organization which works on anarchist
    principles! Another basic anarchist principle is voluntary association. This is
    simply a matter of applying democratic principles to ordinary life. The only
    difference is that anarchists believe it should be possible to have a society
    in which everything could be organized along these lines, all groups based on
    the free consent of their members, and therefore, that all top-down, military
    styles of organization like armies or bureaucracies or large corporations,
    based on chains of command, would no longer be necessary. Perhaps you don’t
    believe that would be possible. Perhaps you do. But every time you reach an
    agreement by consensus, rather than threats, every time you make a voluntary
    arrangement with another person, come to an understanding, or reach a
    compromise by taking due consideration of the other person’s particular
    situation or needs, you are being an anarchist — even if you don’t realize it.

    Anarchism
    is just the way people act when they are free to do as they choose, and when
    they deal with others who are equally free — and therefore aware of the
    responsibility to others that entails.

    An
    approach to the form of a hypothetical anarchist society is simple: take away
    all forms of domination, or of unilateral, unaccountable authority by some
    people over others, put people together, and see what they come up with.

    Anarchy
    itself, rather than a totalizing system, is just a way people interact with one
    another, and it’s all around us right now.

    The
    moment we stop insisting on viewing all forms of action only by their function
    in reproducing larger, total, forms of inequality of power, we will also be
    able to see that anarchist social relations and non-alienated forms of action
    are all around us. And this is critical because it already shows that anarchism
    is, already, and has always been, one of the main bases for human interaction.
    We self-organize and engage in mutual aid all the time. We always have.

    Anarchy
    is whatever people decide to do, whatever arrangements out the countless ones
    possible they make among themselves, when they’re not threatened with violence.
    A political movement that aims to bring about a genuinely free society, one
    where humans only enter those kinds of relations with one another that would
    not have to be enforced by the constant threat of violence.

    History
    has shown that vast inequalities of wealth, institutions like slavery, debt
    peonage, or wage labor, can only exist if backed up by armies, prisons, and
    police. Even deeper structural inequalities like racism and sexism are
    ultimately based on the (more subtle and insidious) threat of force.

    Anarchists
    thus envision a world based on equality and solidarity, in which human beings
    would be free to associate with one another to pursue any endless variety of
    visions, projects, and conceptions of what they find valuable in life.

    If
    you treat people like children, they will tend to act like children. The only
    successful method anyone has ever devised to encourage others to act like
    adults is to treat them as if they already are. It’s not infallible. Nothing
    is. But no other approach has any real chance of success. And the historical
    experience of what actually does happen in crisis situations demonstrates that
    even those who have not grown up in a culture of participatory democracy, if
    you take away their guns or ability to call their lawyers, can suddenly become
    extremely reasonable. This is all that anarchists are really proposing to do.

    So
    anarchism isn’t just a grand theory that was invented by some big-league
    thinker, like Marx in the London Museum. It’s what people actually do.

    The
    Conspiracy of Fire Nuclei, Συνωμοσία των Πυρήνων της Φωτιάς (SPF), leads the
    revolt of Greeks against kleptocracy. The SPF first surfaced on January 21,
    2008, with a wave of fire bombings against kleptocrats. Monthly waves of arson
    have been followed by proclamations expressing solidarity with arrested
    anarchists in Greece and elsewhere. In September 2009, following an escalation
    to the use of crude time bombs, four SPF fighters were arrested. In November
    2010 two more fighters were arrested while attempting to mail parcel bombs to
    embassies and EU leaders and organizations.

    SPF
    represents a third pole of anarchist thought in Greece, anarcho-individualism,
    contrasting it with social anarchism and insurrectionary anarchism. SPF declares
    its alienation and hostility to society as a web of repressive relations. SPF
    rejects class struggle and other collective categories, viewing the war against
    the state and its institutions as a battle for individual self-actualization.
    The SPF does, however, express solidarity with imprisoned anarchists in Greece
    and other countries.

    EXITING THE SYSTEM

    Why not opt out
    of government control? From bootlegging to working off the books,
    we’ve done it many times before, and it’s getting ever-easier to exit the
    system.

    Exploit
    a market opportunity to help people escape government control, no matter the
    law. Exit an increasingly authoritarian system. In other words, to hell with
    arguing for more freedom, let’s take it. Embrace a willingness to defy
    authority.

    The
    ability to reduce the importance of decisions made by kleptocrats, in
    particular without lobbying or sloganeering, is going to become extremely
    important over the next ten years.

    We
    must give people the tools to reduce the influence of bad policies over their
    lives without getting involved in politics; the tools to peacefully opt out.

    An
    opt out from the political system and the burdens it imposes on us is a
    tempting thought. In many ways, life has never been more tolerant, cooler,
    safer (for kids and those trying to avoid crime), or richer. It’s more possible
    than ever to work from where you want to live rather than where an office is
    located, to be gay and safe (if not fully accepted) in ever-more locations, to
    enjoy cultural tastes from punk music to opera to porn without having to seek
    rare venues, to communicate with people and access information far and wide.
    But weighing on all of this like the world’s wettest blanket or a Handicapper
    General of joy is the institution of government, its smothering regulations and
    intrusive controls over our lives.

    We are now embracing not just new technology, but old-fashioned scofflawry—the
    right to ignore the state. We cannot
    choose but admit the right of the citizen to adopt a condition of voluntary
    outlawry. If every man has freedom to do all that he wills, provided he
    infringes not the equal freedom of any other man, then he is free to drop
    connection with the state—to relinquish its protection, and to refuse paying
    toward its support.

    Now
    that so much of the state’s pseudoprotection consists of no-knock raids, phone
    taps, cops boldly going where only the best of friends (if anybody) ought to
    go, and the gentle cupping of your crotch at the airport, a choice to
    “relinquish its protection” seems like a mighty fine idea to many of us.

    There’s not yet a “thanks anyway, but go to hell” checkbox on tax forms, though
    maybe that’ll come along in a year or two, but we can opt out on our own. You
    can use Bitcoin, 3D printing, telepresence, and other technologies as methods
    for escaping government control without the state’s consent. But those are just
    tools. The real key is the willingness to live life as you please, without
    treading on your neighbors’ rights and without knuckling under to authoritarian
    laws or majority preferences.

    Occident is a land of bootlegging, weed-smoking, defiance of gun control,
    shrinking tax compliance, and even underground restaurants. Without doubt we’re up to the challenge.

    DON’T VOTE, IT JUST ENCOURAGES THE BASTARDS!

    Do not vote, as it encourages the bastards! A large turnout gives legitimacy to rulers and sedates
    the people. Voting
    is merely the mechanism by which the extremely corrupt political system fools
    hoi polloi into supporting it. No human
    has any right to rule and rob another. Yet government, and the voting process
    by which it is legalized, is in the exclusive business of ruling and robbing
    others.

  • DOPAMINED
    KLEPTOCRATS

    The primary neurochemical involved in
    the reward of power is dopamine. Power activates a strong reward circuitry in
    the brain and creates an addictive high.
    People in positions of power will seek to maintain the high they get
    from power, sometimes at all costs. When withheld, power produces cravings at
    the cellular level that generate strong behavioral opposition to giving it up.

    To prosper as a socialist, you need to
    threaten the people. But to prosper as a capitalist, you need to please the
    consumers. Your only guarantee is a shot at success, not success itself. Your
    inalienable rights include life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

    Society has two kinds of citizens, the
    workers and the drones. The drones, such
    as kleptocrats, political consultants, eggheads, mafiosi, and clergy, rob
    workers. Kleptocrats constantly seek new activities without paying heed to
    whether the expansion is even necessary and whether it will pay off. Expansion
    justifies a government’s existence, provides sinecures, and creates a flow of
    kickbacks. Many of the things for which government borrows money turn out to be
    pure waste.

    The most brutal method to reduce the debt is the debt
    haircut, a bankruptcy which is reserved for basket cases like Greece. But a government bankruptcy is by no means an
    unusual occurrence in economic history. France declared bankruptcy eight times
    between 1500 and 1800, while Spain could not meet its obligations seven times
    in the 19th century alone.

    In the early 19th century, Greece spent half of its time in
    bankruptcy. Eurozone countries ought to have been forewarned when they accepted
    the Greeks into eurozone. Greece
    experienced a particularly unusual bankruptcy in 1922, when then Finance
    Minister Petros Protopapadakis ordered all banknotes to be cut in half!

    Atlas
    Shrugged! Occident is becoming a
    dystopia where many of society’s most productive citizens refuse to be
    exploited by increasing taxation and government regulations and disappear
    offshore. Yes, the top producers are on strike, stopping the motor of the
    world, withdrawing their minds that drive society’s growth and
    productivity. The Upper-1% is the Atlas
    that supports the Earth on his shoulders.
    When Atlas shrugs, the Lower-99% have not a prayer!

    Occidentals
    are mad as hell! Dysfunctional
    socialistic politics delivers a global depression, which will only deepen the
    political problems for Occident. The global depression has morphed into a
    political crisis. Kleptocrats incapable of wrestling their debt loads to
    manageable levels or reviving growth are stoking turmoil in markets and populist
    unrest among Occidentals. There is a
    power shift from Occident to Orient.

  • I hope the Russian people appreciate how lucky they’ve been for Putin to be around at the right time
    The war mongering maniacs in the West were planning to asset strip, and plunder Russia, claiming its natural resources while funding serial inter-ethnic tribal wars (just like ISIS and Talibans) just like in Congo,Angola….
    In the 1990s, Russian people were driven into starvation and collective suicide under pro American Yeltsin (whom sold the industry to oligarchs) , but Putin kicked the CIA EU Mossad lunatics out and has been re-building a Russia into a world power ever since.
    The West is now asset stripping Ukraine , enslaving it into IMF debt , and its people will be driven to mass poverty and extreme hardship.

    Let’s hope Putin saves Western White European Christian civilization and the children of England and the West from abuse caused by state sponsored neo Marxist multiculturalism and Islamic third world immigration .

    My thoughts and prayers go to the families of the 1800 English children sacrificed by the labour pro sharia council …and many tens of thousands more across England .

    • The Elderking
    • JohnIIISobieski

      1800? That´s one town. Think every Paki community in the country.
      I would not be too surprised if the overall number were close to 100 000.

      • Jackthesmilingblack

        Thought the figure being floated about was 1,400. But nothing like a bit of egging the pudding. You should be a profession journalist, John.

    • Donafugata

      It looks like there was no shortage of native Russians ready to asset strip and plunder natural resources judging from the oligarchs currently in our midst.

  • JohnIIISobieski

    The West Ukrainians loathe Putin and desperately want to be part of the West. Looking at Rotherham you can only have contempt for people who want to be part of this club.

    Love Taki, wish I could have married his daughter.

    • GenJackRipper

      Funny thing is central european countries has evolved from their love for the west?
      After the wall was torned down, everything western was great. Now they realize their own high culture is better than consumer culture of decadence.
      The ukrainians om Lemberg will follow suit.

    • Donafugata

      Ukraine has one aim in joining the EU and that is to allow the population to immigrate to Western Europe in general and the UK in particular.

  • Jackthesmilingblack

    With Iraq fast becoming a failed state, you can’t help feeling Wicked Uncle Sam is a major league liability.

  • Augustus

    Economic embargoes and trade sanctions against Russia won’t work. They simply invite counter sanctions which can only lead to increased frustration and to more popularity for Putin. Ultimately only a diplomatic solution, however difficult, will work. Moscow and Kiev have got to sit down at the table together and Russia must respect Ukraine’s borders.

  • Bonkim

    Spot on Taki – The EU Commissioner and US Ambassador were distributing refreshments to the mob in Kiev. Look what it did for Ukraine –

  • Jaysonrex

    The next American President will be a Republican. And most probably an isolationist. That means Europe will have to take care of itself and will not be able to count on US to save it from Nazis, Commies and assorted crazies that ‘have all the answers’.
    United States will soon abandon NATO, UN (a useless and costly organizations), WTO, etc., thus saving a fortune for its citizens.

    Russia, under Putin, will try to survive all by itself but most certainly it will not succeed just as the Soviet Russia did not and in the end imploded. At that time, Russia under Putin will have to submit to China – first economically and then politically, in order to survive.
    As far as Europe is concerned, there is no doubt that from a Christian area it will soon be part of the Islamic Caliphate and its citizens putting their buts up in the air five times a day, praying towards Mecca.
    All in all, a very attractive future I would say.

    • Nic Walmsley

      Hey, you should put down your comic books and read some history.

      Who was the last isolationist President of the USA? I’ll give you a guess, it’s not a Republican.

      You do know the US runs NATO, owns the important bits of the UN, and invented the WTO? They are instruments to protect your trading regime, from which you make a pretty penny.

      Why would Russia submit to China? China will come begging Russia for resources if the West ever closes off the tap.

      Europe. It’s a mess, no doubt.

    • Donafugata

      Very depressing but I fear you are not far off the mark, Jayson.

      Obama will go down in history as the very last Democrat as president and the American people resent their taxes being spent on other Americans so they can’t be too enamoured of any further spending on Europe and its problems.

      Most of us here are 100% in agreement that not enough is being done to expunge Islam but when crunch time comes, we will no longer have the US to rely on, even more reason to deal with it now.

  • Bonkim

    Don’t mess about in Russia’s backyard.

  • Donafugata

    On the whole, Taki is right.

    As a keen observer of American foreign policy for several decades their fatal flaw has been based on the simplistic and erroneous belief that ones enemy’s enemy is a friend.

    Perhaps it is due to Kerry’s earlier enthusiasm for supporting those lovely Arabs who worship the vernal equinox that embarrasses the administration into not wanting to talk to Assad.

    As with Sadaam, Gadaffi and Mubarak, useful dictators may be very unpleasant by our standards but they can help conquer the common enemy. How we deal with them later is another thing.
    Oops, nearly forgot, uncle Joe was quite useful in 1944.

Close