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Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by skunk, Jan 26, 2005.
Food for thought, eh?
what a crock of ****!
No thanks, I couldn't think another bite.
No kidding! Did Bush fire ALL of his economic advisors? Is his cabinet empty? Did Powell or Cheny refuse this year? They went last year.
I hate these kind of excuses.
It reminds me very much of the person who's knee-deep in unpaid bills, getting calls from the collection companies, and pretending no one's home.
How soon before we stop referring to the US as the world's only superpower? I'd say the second Bush administration ought to just about do it.
That will depend on if the Bush administration unites the world against us. Not militarily, obviously, but economically and idealogically we will be isolated and pushed aside by the up-and-comers.
As it happens I ran across this Financial Times article yesterday. I'll post it since it requires subscription.
Great article. I've also read that South American countries are strengthening ties to Asia, which could only reduce US influence in both those regions.
I wonder how the other aspiring powers will fit into the emerging three-part world (US-NAFTA, EU, Asean+3). Russia, India ... Brazil. Relations with the world of Islam will also be a key factor in the world of the 21st century. The US is at a clear disadvantage there too.
Agreed, and good posts following it.
How long will NAFTA survive, I wonder. It doesn't do the Mexicans many favours.
America is increasingly becoming an irrelevance, an anachronistic geopolitical dinosaur. You are merely suffered, not admired, as you lumber around, crushing millions while completely unaware. How are the mighty falling! And how many of us will you take with you?
(that was emphatic, not a factorial)
Is that code, or Codex Hammurabi?
just a guess.
I fear it's an underestimate...
I second that. On both counts.
Do I detect a hint of self-satisfaction or even glee in your last paragraph?
At any rate, the "lumbering and crushing of millions..." as you so put it, is a common thread of all superpowers, whether they be English, French, Spanish, Soviet or American in nature. The US's behavior, comparatively speaking, has been fairly good I would venture.
America does find itself at the end of an era (the past sixty years or so), and it's mettle willbe tested in navigating the transition from sole-superpower status, to a powerful Nation among equals.
Personally, I see this as a good thing in the long run, as America yet again re-invents itself to suit a new purpose. This may happen with or without the Federal Government's actions, as here in the NW for example, we are already firmly focused on the Asian markets and the transfer of goods,services, people and information is accelerating between the two, despite of, or ignorant of, Federal policy.
Not really. But the historian in me is quite smug, I suppose. The transient nature of absolute power is absolutely amazing.
The word "moot" comes to mind.
Yes, but. The lack of awareness among Americans of their own feet of clay portends a great deal of misery while that transition unfolds. A wounded America is a dangerous and unpredictable beast. QED.
Let's hope so. But let's face it, it could go either way.
As in, "The sun never sets on the British Empire"?
And since we're QED-ing here, I don't see much of evidence of nations which find themselves involuntarily reinventing their role in the world turning into rabid dogs.
In defense of the neo-cons (probably the only time you'll ever hear me do it), I believe they are fully aware of the fact that the US won't be the world's sole superpower for very long. They envision the US using this moment to alter the course of world history to the maximum extent possible. They feel that the US is better equipped to move human history in a productive direction than, say, the Chinese. I can see the point, even if I don't agree with the method.
Are the ends justified if the means are so tainted?
Maybe or maybe not, but I don't see the point of attacking this question with inverted logic.
I believe it is the Neo-Cons' logic which is inverted. They do their best to disguise that fact by inverting our very language.
I do believe you're evading the issue. It is perfectly possible to pursue a worthy goal in an unworthy manner (hence, the expression).
But that makes it neither right, nor a good idea. I may be the starry-eyed idealist here, but using the methods of a despot in order to remove despots seems -no- *is* counter-productive. All we've managed to do is become another despotic nation.
The issue is that the United States, through its own actions, is sidelining itself. Destroying its own credibility and good faith, and in the process, any chance of positive change, in an attempt to "do the right thing".
Some means are *never* justified, and sometimes good intentions aren't enough.
the problem is that we don't know if the US government is persuing a 'worthy goal' ... except throwing in catch-phrases (which are rather old) the US government haven't done much to show what they really persue at the moment...
Now all three of you are evading the issue! You all should know my opinion about this administration's means, so please don't force me to repeat it. I am simply making the fundamental point that we should not assume that all bad means automatically lead to unworthy goals. This statement is in no way equivalent to "the ends justifying the means." Logic and semantics experts are welcome to check me on this, but the inverse of a true statement is not necessarily a true statement.
To the more specific issue, what Bush is saying these days about the US standing for freedom, democracy and human rights in the world is very little different than what every US president in the 20th century has said. This is a worthy goal, which as an American I'd be proud to have my national government pursue. But this does not imply even remotely that I'd approve of any given path towards that goal. Understood?
well "freedom,democracy and human rights" were exactly the catch phrases i meant... the Bush government _says_ they are persuing these goals but that doesn't make it so... personally i don't think the bush lead us government is persuing any of those goals at it's core....
my point is that bad means don't automatically lead to a end