Much like interaction between neighbors, I believe interaction between nations is similar. In short, politics is like the rules of the street.
If you encounter someone out-and-about trying to rob/rape/burn a third party not known to you, you may choose to walk away, or engage.
If a nation takes force against another, you can make the same choice. Or not.
HOWEVER…we don’t exist in a vacuum, either as members of society or as a Republic!
(from Mike @ Cold Fury)
War is the health of the State.
Until August 1914 a sensible, law-abiding Englishman could pass through life and hardly notice the existence of the state, beyond the post office and the policeman. He could live where he liked and as he liked. He had no official number or identity card. He could travel abroad or leave his country for ever without a passport or any sort of official permission. He could exchange his money for any other currency without restriction or limit. He could buy goods from any country in the world on the same terms as he bought goods at home. For that matter, a foreigner could spend his life in this country without permit and without informing the police. Unlike the countries of the European continent, the state did not require its citizens to perform military service. An Englishman could enlist, if he chose, in the regular army, the navy, or the territorials. He could also ignore, if he chose, the demands of national defence. Substantial householders were occasionally called on for jury service. Otherwise, only those helped the state who wished to do so. The Englishman paid taxes on a modest scale: nearly £200 million in 1913-14, or rather less than 8 per cent. of the national income. The state intervened to prevent the citizen from eating adulterated food or contracting certain infectious diseases. It imposed safety rules in factories, and prevented women, and adult males in some industries, from working excessive hours. The state saw to it that children received education up to the age of 13. Since 1 January 1909, it provided a meagre pension for the needy over the age of 70. Since 1911, it helped to insure certain classes of workers against sickness and unemployment. This tendency towards more state action was increasing. Expenditure on the social services had roughly doubled since the Liberals took office in 1905. Still, broadly speaking, the state acted only to help those who could not help themselves. It left the adult citizen alone.
All this was changed by the impact of the Great War. The mass of the people became, for the first time, active citizens. Their lives were shaped by orders from above; they were required to serve the state instead of pursuing exclusively their own affairs. Five million men entered the armed forces, many of them (though a minority) under compulsion. The Englishman’s food was limited, and its quality changed, by government order. His freedom of movement was restricted; his conditions of work prescribed. Some industries were reduced or closed, others artificially fostered. The publication of news was fettered. Street lights were dimmed. The sacred freedom of drinking was tampered with: licensed hours were cut down, and the beer watered by order. The very time on the clocks was changed. From 1916 onwards, every Englishman got up an hour earlier in summer than he would otherwise have done, thanks to an act of parliament. The state established a hold over its citizens which, though relaxed in peacetime, was never to be removed and which the second World war was again to increase. The history of the English state and of the English people merged for the first time.
Funny how so many “temporary” wartime measures turn out to be anything but. But the truth is that power glommed by the government, and liberty stolen from the people, are two of the most permanent things in existence.
(Via Jay Nordlinger)
Do no-knock warrants (The War On Drugs), or sobriety checkpoints (Alcohol), or metal detectors @ airports (Hijacking) have a ring? Or The Patriot Act or the NDAA, the TSA, Homeland Security (or any of their bastard children) post 9/11?
Don’t you see? EVERYTHING is countenanced as a WAR by government! And, as such, demands these extreme measures for the government to combat them.
And the only way they relinquish any of their ill-gotten power is through long, hard-fought legal battles. Like courts now requiring warrants for cell-phone access.
Or, I suppose, through another choice.
Also to be hard fought.
The US Army has awarded 17 companies, including major corporations, $900 million in contracts for logistics and service support for biological and chemical war projects, the Department of Defense announced.
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The companies, including the Battelle Memorial Institute of Columbus, Ohio and the Camber Corp. of Huntsville, Alabama “were awarded a $900 million… contract to the Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical and Biological Defense,” the announcement said on Tuesday.The other companies receiving contracts were Aktarius, Allied Technical Services, AQuate II, Axseum Solutions; KD Analytical Consulting, Murtech, Omega Consultants, SciTech Services, DRS Technical Services, STS International, Engility, Leidos, Patricio Enterprises and SAIC Corp., it said.
The United States faces current and emerging chemical and biological threats and requires integrated defenses against them, but currently those responsibilities are split among 26 different Defense Department agencies, according to an August 2015 US Government Accountability Office report.
Even if these are ‘legal’, it begs the question: Why?
Where/Who are the potential targets? Is this just about ‘research’? TWENTY-SIX companies?
h/t Sputnik International
I wasn’t born for another eleven years when this happened, but as a student of history and an American it gets to me. Much as the JFK assassination, The Marine Barracks, Khobar Towers, The U.S.S Cole and The Twin Towers attacks did during my life.
Meeting that Navy veteran who had served on the Arizona on Veteran’s Day this year did as well.
Please take a moment of silence today.
Tomi (known to long-time blog readers here) recently posted her response to the Paris terrorist attacks on her blog.
To be fair, I was a bit surprised. After all, she is an admitted social democrat, who tends to lean left in her views on many things.
Here is her post, in full:
I have often felt like a voice crying in the wilderness, since September 11, 2001. I keep insisting that the “War on Terror” is a sham. You can’t wage “war” on religious fanatics who wear suicide bomb vests and shoot people at restaurants. Terrorism is a series of criminal acts done by those that have nothing to lose in this life, and everything to gain in the hereafter.
After nearly fifteen years of listening to this ridiculousness, and watching the US commit its worst crimes since the Native American genocide, I am ready to throw in the towel….kind of.
If we’re going to fight a “war” let’s make it a real one: State to State.
We KNOW where these terrorists get their money from: Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, and the United Arab Emirates. They are, and always have been, the funders of Al-Qaeda, ISIS (ISIL, the IS, or whatever you want to call it) and all of their offshoots.
I am not saying anything we all already don’t know.
It is long past time to keep pretending these States are our allies. They are not and never have been.
Seize their financial assets. All of them. Tell them they will get their money back if and when all of their sponsored terrorism ceases.
It is time to stop all this double-dealing. They are not our friends or allies. They are our enemies, by any reasonable definition of the word.
These proxy wars have got to stop. If we’re going to expend blood and treasure, let’s at least do it honestly.
Of course, no one wants war (except, perhaps war profiteers and fanatics). But I understand her argument. The fact we both fight and simultaneously support so many of these nations smacks of that military-industrial complex President Eisenhower warned us about!
Let us not remain mired in brush-fire wars that have been plaguing us since Vietnam.
As Todd Beamer said on Flight 93, “Let’s roll!”
As I’ve aged, I’ve developed more of an appreciation for our military veterans.
I don’t know why, exactly?
Maybe it’s because, with my childhood Life plans having failed, due to my leg disability, I was unable to join the largest, least-exclusive club in the World (Service Veterans). And I’ve been able to observe, albeit from a distance, the brotherhood, camaraderie and sacrifice imbued in those men and women.
And with the addition of the instant news cycle, see some of the physical damage caused to them.
On previous Veterans Days (when I was employed) I made it a point to walk around on break and shake hands of those I knew had served and say “Thank You!” I know it’s not much, especially for persons my age who returned from Vietnam and were denounced as war criminals and spat-upon. And the Korean War Vets who were (and are) pretty much largely ignored by the media.
I was accompanying my roommate to another of her doctor’s appointments on November 11 this year, and there was an older guy (my age?) with the jacket and cap, embroidered with his service particulars. I didn’t see what they were. I made a point to walk over to him and shake his hand. It was the very least I could do.
After her appointment, J. wanted to get a bite-to-eat, so we stopped at a restaurant we sometimes frequent. And before our meal arrived, in walked another veteran. Also with an embroidered cap and patched jacket. Significantly older. A larger man, with silver hair. With his wife.
After they were seated and had placed their orders, I got up and walked over to them. I excused myself, apologized for interrupting, and explained I just wanted to thank him for his service. He smiled, shook my hand vigorously, and his wife beamed.
Then I saw the identifying patch on his sleeve.
I left hurriedly back to our table, so he wouldn’t see me cry.
Via comment by Anonymous on Confederate flag prompts school lockdown: Student (SERIOUSLY? – Guffaw)
A good man who posted many Confederate pieces. He left us way too soon and may you rest in piece, brave warrior.
Yankees respected Confederates. Why must we despise them today?
Back in 2006, my wife and I went to a friend’s house to watch Oscar De La Hoya fight Ricardo Mayorga for the World Boxing Council light–middleweight boxing championship. My wife was unfamiliar with professional boxing and was taken aback by the trash talking between the two foes, which HBO recapped during the intro to the show. “You’re going to be my bitch in my bed anytime I want you,” was one of Mr. Mayorga’s more printable insults.
Mr. De La Hoya won handily with a 6th round TKO, to the delight of many fans and my wife as well.
But, to her surprise, the fighters embraced after the fight and appeared to let bygones be bygones.
“You are a great fighter, a great champion,” Mr. Mayorga said. “I apologize for everything I said to you.”
How, she wondered, could everything be so easily settled?
The fact is, settling grievances through combat is pretty common. Kids at schools everywhere still “take it outside” and are often friends afterwards. Fighters in the boxing ring, the UFC, and other combat sports routinely find their grievances settled after a fight.
This is sometimes referred to as “the warrior’s ethic.” If a problem can’t be talked out, it can be settled by combat, often followed by mutual respect between winner and the loser.
David Yeagley, who spoke several times at American Renaissance conferences, was a Comanche activist who understood the warrior ethic:
While I believe in ‘The Warrior Ethic’, I do not believe it applies in all combat.
If someone was trying to relieve me (or my family and friends) of Life or Property, for example. Assuming we survive, and the miscreants are in handcuffs, being prepared for extraction to the local jail (or hospital), I would have no thought of shaking their hands and exclaiming “good try”, or some other nonsense.
And certainly, those who are trying to relieve us of our Liberty deserve no ‘civil handshake’ after the ‘festivities’ have ended.
These are not hockey matches.
And, I don’t expect a handshake from the Gestapo as the boxcars pull out of the station…
h/t Brock Townsend
(Reblogged in it’s entirety, courtesy of Joel (The Ultimate Answer To Kings))
The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.
– H. L. Mencken
It used to be so easy. After the Nazis there were the commies. They took so many different forms, from the hapless to the satanic, that the international hobgoblin quotient was handled for decades with no input needed from our would-be masters but some periodic viewing with alarm and a regular infusion of flag-draped coffins. Simply enumerating the warheads was enough to keep most people scared incontinent. After those ungrateful Soviets fell and people stopped being afraid of commies, our beloved protectors had to work a little harder. But very promptly after pieces of the Berlin wall became common keepsakes we were suddenly all supposed to pretend we knew the difference between a Shi’ite and a Sunni because now Muslims were the new…okay, “great satan” is taken, so…How’s “Axis of Evil?” Yeah! That’s got a ring to it.
Okay, so as a world-conquering existential threat, Muslims have proven something of a disappointment. Yeah, they kicked some Visigoth ass that one time but we’re trying to keep Facebook followers scared here. Thank god – I imagine our masters muttering – for all those beheading videos. Bring on the illegal aliens, and pray at least a few of them know how to do a good beheading. How long do these neolithic oafs think we can milk 9/11? Maybe we can slip them a bomb and get something good started.
Domestically, our beloved protectors have even bigger problems. It’s true some serious issues could be worked into nice scary crises, but they’re the sort of things we’re supposed to be distracted from. Race riots in the second decade of the century? But our masters solved the race problem in 1965! It’s the white racists who’re supposed to be the problem now, and they stubbornly refuse to provide any nice photogenic lynchings. Cop violence? Jeez, how can even the most divisive administration imaginable complain about cops when they’ve been arming them so enthusiastically for so long?
Really, it’s a sad, sad commentary on how far the state of hobgoblin-mongering has fallen, when this is the best our would-be masters’ mouthpieces can do…
The New War on Heroin Has Only Just Begun
“The prescription drug overdose epidemic is tragic and costly, but can be reversed,” CDC Director Tom Frieden said in a statement. “Because we can protect people from becoming addicted to opioids, we must take fast action now, with real-time tracking programs, safer prescribing practices, and rapid response. Reversing this epidemic will require programs in all 50 states.”Once a problem largely confined to minority populations in urban areas, addiction to heroin and other opiates has evolved into a major public health crisis in suburban and rural areas with large white populations – including the important political battleground states of New Hampshire, Ohio and Iowa.
Democratic presidential frontrunner Hillary Rodham Clinton calls it the “quiet epidemic,” while Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell warned that it was “spreading like cancer” across his home state of Kentucky.
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R), a presidential candidate, took part in a discussion of the crisis earlier this year at a drug treatment facility in Manchester, N.H., while Carly Fiorina, another GOP presidential candidate, has spoken emotionally about losing a stepdaughter to addiction, according to The Washington Post.
(and, the money quote from Joel – Guffaw)
I know, I know. Heroin’s been done to death. And you’d think it does raise that inconvenient question about how, if there’s been this highly successful War on Drugs for damn near fifty years, turning cities into occupied zones and creating a prison industry that would have made Pol Pot impotently beat the ground in frustrated envy, how oh how could there possibly be a heroin crisis?
But hey. These aren’t the old days, and it’s what we’ve got.
“You never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that it’s an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before.” – Rahm Emanuel
(courtesy of Cold Fury)
The Europeans, to be sure, are a pack of cynical hypocrites. If they had cared about Syrians, they might have sent a couple of brigades of soldiers to fight ISIS. But not a single European will risk his neck to prevent humanitarian catastrophe. The last time European soldiers got close to real trouble, in Srebrenica in 1995, Dutch peacekeepers stood aside while Bosnian Serbs massacred 8,000 Muslims.
The refugee problem can’t be solved at Europe’s borders; it only can be solved before it happens, by stabilizing the situation on the ground. But that would mean containing Iran’s ambitions and crushing the Sunni jihadists at the same time. Blood would spill, and not all of it local. The Europeans don’t think the Middle East is “worth the bones of a single Pomeranian grenadier,” as Bismarck said of the Balkans. They will pay for their fecklessness many times over.
And so, I suspect, shall we.
*Thought this was about The United States, didn’t you? :-)
It’s been a few days since the 70th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima (followed 3 days later by a similar bombing of Nagasaki). The Japanese surrendered 24 days later.
And much of the media is playing the apologist’s trumpet: Oh, the poor Japanese! We could have won the war without using such a horrible weapon! It was actually a ploy to demonstrate to the Soviets we mean business! The U.S. is the only nation to have actually used THE BOMB! The United States should have been tried for war crimes!
Neglecting to mention (of course) that it was the Japanese who started the whole bloody thing. They were trying to capture the whole Far East to obtain raw materials and slave labor to further enrich their Empire.
And to divide the World into their half and the German Nazi half.
Why don’t those who decry American actions remember the Bataan Death March, or the Rape of Nanking? The Philippines? Or even Pearl Harbor? Or consider how many hundreds of thousands on both sides would have perished if we had been forced to invade Japan?
We, as a nation, are allowed, no OBLIGATED, to defend ourselves and our allies! (see what treaties get us into, moral obligations aside?)
The trumpeter is (in my view) the same as the appeaser.
Certainly, it’s easy to Monday-morning-quarterback our actions after the fact. And now that we took Japan and converted her into an industrial superpower (as we did with war-torn Germany), and made them allies, we are told this is not enough.
Because the people who wanted to appease the Japanese Empire and The German National Socialist State are the same people who want us to pay some kind of reparations in perpetuity.
Because they view The United States as just as bad, or worse.
And these same folks want us to bend over backwards to appease the Islamic Fundamentalists.
Because they hate war so much they’d rather live (or die) under an oppressive regime then fight for liberty.
“Better Red Than Dead” – remember that?
“An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.” – Winston S. Churchill
Part of my ongoing, imperfect move toward self-improvement is to learn to ‘let go’ of others negative actions in the past.
And my own. As for me, I’ve been making amends. Mostly.
Other folks, well…
My roomie has been watching some comedy on our satellite TV network. Apparently everyone is in it – so she recommends I watch it.
One of the noted cast members is J*** F****!
You remember: that traitorous bitch actress who visited NORTH Vietnam while were
at war engaging in a ‘police action’ against them, demoralizing our own efforts and (in my opinion) giving aid and comfort to the enemy!
I’m sorry. She can rail against the capitalist system, all while making millions selling movies, and work-out videos. And continue to appear in films and TV shows.
I’ve no problem with that. (Hypocritical though it may be…)
Giving aid and comfort to the enemy, for me, is beyond the pale.
Then, there’s that (then) 23-year-old guy who broadsided my daughter Molly and I. (in 1995) I’m unable to forgive HIM, yet, either.
Frankly, I’m more likely to forgive HIM than Ms. F****. He was speeding, rushing to get to his job when he ran the light and T-Boned us. Accidents happen. (A co-worker reportedly said he bragged about ‘getting away with it!’ He paid an $800.00 fine. Stupidity and youth and all that.)
That traitorous bitch visited a country with which we were at war, actively supported them against us. There are even stories of her betraying POWs she visited to their captors – although theoretically those stories have been debunked.
Regardless, if she had protested at home, as many good Americans did, I’d have no problem. Protest is a fine American tradition.
Hollywood has produced some amazing talents. J*** F**** and Sean Penn amongst them.
Sean Penn hugged Hugo Chavez. While ridiculous and reprehensible, we are not at war with his country.
She should still be in Leavenworth. At least. The car guy should have served time for vehicular manslaughter, and would probably have gotten out by now.
She did issue an apology years later.
He has not, except a mumbled “I’m sorry” in court.
Accidents are, sadly, accidents. Treason is treason.
I’m still not watching that show.
Obviously, in the area of forgiveness, I’ve still work to do…