The Dogs of War: Useless Republican Candidates.

In the latest Republican Debate, candidates Rand Paul and Chris Christie had this testy exchange:

Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky suggested that his rival Chris Christie would start World War III if elected president.

Paul was asked to respond to Christie, the New Jersey governor, saying he would implement a no-fly zone in Syria and be willing to order the shooting down of Russian planes that violate it.

“I think if you’re in favor of World War III, you have your candidate,” Paul said, gesturing to Christie.

Other Republican candidates, such as Carly Fiorina, John Kasich, and George Pataki, all proclaimed their dedication to imposing no-fly zones over Syria and boldly shooting down Russian planes that fly overhead. Kasich even took it a step further, saying it was time to “punch the Russians in the nose.”

Problem: All of these people are losers. Carly Fiorina is a failed CEO ousted from Hewlett-Packard due to her own incompetence; John Kasich, George Pataki, and Chris Christie are all unimpressive domestic politicians with mediocre records. Chris Christie had some popularity only due to his trademark bluster; but he has not achieved any major positive reforms during his time as governor of NJ. None of these candidates are very appealing, which is why none of them poll within the top 4 of Republican candidates.

Consider this: Vladimir Putin, crappy guy that he may be, has more political, diplomatic, and military experience than all of these people combined. He is a former KGB colonel, and has brokered power in the Russian Federation for nearly 20 years. As events over the past 3 years have shown, he is a man of great cunning and political/diplomatic acumen. Unlike Barack Obama, whose political career is due purely to vetting from rich globalist elites, Vladimir Putin seized power in Russia after a lifetime of ladder-climbing and deft maneuvering. Putin has run circles around Obama since the beginning of the Syrian Civil War. Recent polls even show a higher level of respect for Vladimir Putin among Americans than respect for Barack Obama.

These Republican candidates are talking a big game. But I’d pay to see them go toe-to-toe against Vladimir Putin in a battle of wits. I have a feeling the warmongering Republican candidates would all leave the event extremely embarrassed.

Believe it or not, one of the best sound bites from the entirety of the Republican debate came from the Trumpster. His lucid grasp of the situation is second only to Rand Paul’s:

“We’ve spent $4 trillion trying to topple various people that, frankly, if they were there and if we could have spent that $4 trillion in the United States to fix our roads, our bridges, and all of the other problems — our airports and all the other problems we have — we would have been a lot better off. …

“We have done a tremendous disservice not only to the Middle East — we’ve done a tremendous disservice to humanity. The people that have been killed, the people that have been wiped away — and for what? It’s not like we had victory. It’s a mess. The Middle East is totally destabilized, a total and complete mess. I wish we had the 4 trillion dollars or 5 trillion dollars. I wish it were spent right here in the United States on schools, hospitals, roads, airports, and everything else that are all falling apart!”

Trump gets it: the US government wrecked the Middle East. They blew it. Nations that were at least stable 15 years ago are now locked in bloody civil war. Hundreds of thousands, maybe even millions, have died throughout North Africa and the Middle East. ISIS runs rampant across Iraq and Syria, slaughtering the world’s most ancient Christian communities. None of this was the case 15 years ago. And still, American neoconservatives continue to claim that more military intervention is needed. What they refuse to acknowledge is this: the chaos caused by US military intervention in this region is helpful to jihadist terror groups. Not only does the chaos allow terrorists to maneuver with more flexibility, but the destruction caused by US involvement creates a larger recruiting pool of angry young Arabs looking for payback.

Consider this 2-minute video, from former General Wesley Clark:

It is as General Clark said: nearly everything that has happened in the Middle East, from the invasion of Iraq to the division of Sudan, to the collapsing of Libya, Yemen, and Syria, has had a place in overall US foreign policy – a grand plan to subjugate the region with US-backed autocrats. I am not claiming that the situation as it exists is the total construction of the US government; rather, I’m saying that the Feds thought they could play the Middle East like a gigantic game of Risk, but the situation escaped from their grasp and is now out of control. The grand plan to subjugate the Middle East has failed.

I am not 100% satisfied with Trump’s remark. He still fell into the same ol’ trap that mainstream Republicans and Democrats always fall into, which is a strict dichotomy between military spending vs. domestic government spending. I say, to hell with the government spending. Lower taxes. Let me decide what to do with my own money.

Trump claims that money spent on the wars in the Middle East could’ve been better put to use toward public schools, bridges, and airports in the USA. As far as government spending is concerned, it’s true that I’d at least rather have tax dollars used in a way that might benefit me (albeit in a murky manner) as opposed to simply being pissed away on killing people for little to no good reason. But rather than claim that the $4 trillion spent on foreign wars should’ve been spent on welfare at home, I’d put it this way (my comments in brackets):

“We have done a tremendous disservice not only to the Middle East — we’ve done a tremendous disservice to humanity. The people that have been killed, the people that have been wiped away — and for what? It’s not like we had victory. It’s a mess. The Middle East is totally destabilized, a total and complete mess. I wish we had the 4 trillion dollars or 5 trillion dollars. I wish it were spent right here in the United States [by the people who actually earned it to make their own lives better and improve the lives of others through the productive action of the free market!]

Forget military spending or welfare/infrastructural spending. Let Americans keep their own damn money instead. Ditch the spending on foreign military boondoggles and lower the federal tax rates. If Americans want a hospital, they’ll build a hospital. If they want a school, they’ll build a school. It’s not that complicated. We don’t need a Nanny State to hold our hands and do this stuff for us.

This is a good example of why I do not trust either major political party. In fact, I have previously referred to them as merely two sides of the same coin, both eagerly pursuing federal spending for different pet projects. What we need is a political current that dedicates itself to the opposite: a complete reversal of federal spending. This is what the original Tea Party movement stood for, which was a marvelous goal; unfortunately, the original Tea Partiers put too much trust in Congressional Republicans, who betrayed them time and time again. Furthermore, the original Tea Partiers did not understand this fact: that theft by taxation in America is a way of life. Everyone in America wants free goodies paid for by other people’s money. Social Security and Medicare are the epitome of this, closely followed by the public schools and the military-industrial complex. The original Tea Partiers thought their message would resonate with Americans. With some voters, it really did resonate. But the welfare mindset is too entrenched in the minds of American voters, even the conservatives, to overturn business as usual in Washington. The Tea Party was eventually co-opted by useless establishment Republicans, which destroyed their potency. What remains of the original Tea Party is largely insignificant.

This is why I view the coming bankruptcy of the federal government as a positive thing. Bittersweet, perhaps; I realize it will throw off the plans of some people, especially young folks who thought they could rely on the government to take care of mom and dad in their old age. The bankruptcy of the federal government (which is really statistically bankrupt already) will mean that old folks are not going to be able to rely on Medicare and Social Security for income supplication. Unless they have sufficient retirement savings, which many do not, these oldsters will probably have to move in with their kids for care and support.

But this was the way of the world for thousands of years. The idea of independent retirement is a relatively recent idea. Such an idea is only possible where sufficient capital has been accumulated. Unfortunately, Americans have been consuming more capital since the mid-1900’s. Personal savings rates are far lower today than they were 50 years ago:

rate

When I discuss federal bankruptcy, I am not predicting anything like a societal or governmental collapse. There will not be any zombie apocalypse. Life will go on. But the key will be this: voters will figure out that Washington lied to them about almost everything for years. This will be an excellent chance to refocus governance in America from Washington D.C. back to the State and Local levels. It will be a good chance for local voters to take power back from the losers in Washington.

 

 

 

 

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