The cognitive dissonance at work in N’s email, written in response to yesterday’s column, is remarkable:
I like Ron Paul but I don’t like him closing all our bases around the world and bringing our army back home. This isolationist view is DANGEROUS and will only empower and embolden our enemies and actually bring us closer to WORLD WAR, this time right at our DOORSTEPS!
Is that what you want???
If Reagan said America was that “shining city on the hill”, dimming it around the world with an isolationist view will only make stronger the darkness of this world. We need to keep shining that light shining everywhere, bud. The cost of peace ain’t cheap, but war is a hell of a lot more expensive!
Yes, that is precisely what I want. All military bases closed, all American troops back in the USA. To argue otherwise is indicative of a shockingly stupid perspective which is not only illogical, but blatantly ignores both the historical record and the observable reality of present U.S. foreign policy.
First, the argument about “the cost of peace” is a non-starter. America is presently engaged in military operations in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, and Iran. (Don’t kid yourself, there are already CIA and most likely special forces in Iran right now.) It may still be active in Libya. That is hardly peace.
Second, the USA is bankrupt. It can’t afford ANY military operations at all. Thanks to the expected failure of the Congressional supercommittee, automatic defense cuts must be made. As the global economic contraction continues, the U.S. military will have to shrink.
Third, it is American military operations that have not only brought enemies to our DOORSTEPS, but have brought them into the country. The Saudis who attacked the Two Towers on 9/11 were angry about the U.S. military bases in Saudi Arabia and were “studying” in the United States. There are far more Somalis in the USA than there were before U.S. troops invaded Somalia and more Iraqis than before U.S. troops invaded Iraq.
Isolation is not dangerous. American strength and wealth waxed during its isolationist period and has declined steadily ever since, just as both the Roman and British empires declined once they started attempting to police the world. As I wrote in the column, the irony is that the one Republican presidential candidate whose policies would strengthen the American military and best protect American interests is constantly attacked by stupid and ignorant Republicans who wrongly believe that the more troop deployments that take place, the stronger the nation is.
No wonder they also fall for the Neo-Keynesian argument that the more money you spend, the wealthier you become.