Alpha 1: This was a thought-provoking piece, but there's no doubt that the author 1. Doesn't want the U.S. to continue this war;
I think he questions the complete concentration on the military aspect; He seems to agree with the efforts undertaken so far. And I´m more or less swith him on both counts.
Alpha 1: 2. Doesn't think much of capatilism,
I can´t see that
. The european view of capitalism is in general positive, but is usually a bit more wary of its downsides. That´s it.
Alpha 1: 3. Despite his disdain for U.S. and for Captalism,
Ooops. I didn´t see that, either. He´s critical of the apparent strategy of the Bush administration
, but quite positive about the USA
. That combination isn´t completely unheard of even with american citizens, if I´m not mistaken.
Alpha 1: certianly wants the U.S. taxpayer to bail out half the world of it's "iniquities".
No. When he´s critizising unilateralism
he´s automatically pleading for "the rest of us" getting involved.
Alpha 1: -The author, quoting Phillipine President Arroyo, thinks that victory is assured-that the U.S., indeed, the world, has nothing to fear anything more;
I agree, he´s dismissing the real and continuing threat too quickly, for the sake of his argument.
Alpha 1: -The author says that "War fever has given Mr. Bush an excuse to tear up his promises about balanced budgets and to propose additional tax cuts that would benefit America's biggest corporations and richest citizens."
First of all, it's pretty naive to state that a major attack-on our soil, that caused thousands of fatalities-is being used as an "excuse" to get rid of balanced budgets. In the same way, perhaps, as the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor gave Roosevelt to expand our military in 1942? It doesn't wash. A war tends to throw out all economic forcasts, a point the author conveniently doesn't bring up.
The argument would indeed be void - was there not the memory of the Reagan and the previous Bush administration´s preferences for inflated military budgets. Political agendas don´t just vanish, even in times like these.
I wouldn´t criticize all of the bush administration´s decisions by themselves; But the question of proportions
can (and probably will
) still make or break them.
Tax cuts can be positive; But the jury´s still out on whether tax cuts for the wealthy
can really cancel out the budgetary (debt) problems created in the process.
Alpha 1: -As for the World Economic Forum, and the approval the author has for it, there's no doubt that it was run, from beginning to end, by a bunch of socialists who still feel that the best way to solve the worlds' problems, is for the rich-more specifically, the U.S., and it's corrupt capatilists system-to give to the have-not's in the world.
For a communist teach-in
it´s got a pretty surprising guest list studded with high-ranking capitalists
Alpha 1: The author certianly doesn't want Britian and the E.U. to help pay for this transfer of wealth, and suggests as much when he says that Britian should distance itself from the U.S.
Not that I could see. The idea that the wealthy nations have responsibilities against the poorest ones is just a lot more accepted in the european public.
Alpha 1: The U.S. will be damned if this forum, composed of left-leaning socialists, who never have liked capatalism-correction, who don't like how successful the U.S. has been at capatilism-is allowed to fleece the American taxpayers of trillions of dollars over a period of years, in order to solve these "inequities".
Nonsense. The USA would be very welcome to participate in a coordinated
effort to clean up the mess that colonialism and economic exploitation, but also centuries of local wars have created. For many others, participation is not a question. The question of "blame" for the situation is on the table, but it´s actually secondary. We shouldn´t completely ignore that even our highly developed nations will fare much better when dealing (and trading!) with stable and prospering regions instead of ruined and violent territories.
Alpha 1: Again, this is an example of someone with a case of scizheprhenia. They tell us how bad capatlism-the U.S. form in particlar, is for the world, nad they blame the U.S. for all the inequities in the world, yet in the same breath, they demand that this system they so despise give away its wealth and its prosperity to others.
Oh, come on! You´re simplifying to the point where the wheels are falling off!
Alpha 1: Such thinking is called socialism or communism.
Err... no, it isn´t. Not every
time somebody´s thinking of responsibilities
he´s necessarily a communist
. That´s as silly as saying everybody who wants to make a profit is by necessity a greedy criminal.
Alpha 1: And these same people, who fear that the U.S. is going too far in protecting it's citizens, would be the first to demand the U.S. protect THEM if an even even a fraction of the size of 9-11 took place in their country.
You seem to have missed many, many tragedies and difficulties going on beyond your own shores.
By the way, there´s not a problem with doing "too much to protect the citizens" (just look at the current state of US airport security!); The problem is with leaving all flanks open except one
- the military one! And all the experience in the world outside the USA suggests that military means can not
be the primary weapon against terrorism. The coalition military forces seem to have served well in the case of Afghanistan (we´ll know more in a few years, probably), but most of the terrorist structures are still intact - and they´re not in plain sight in a country you could summarily carpet-bomb into submission.
Alpha 1: It was an interesting article to read.
I thought so. And I´m glad we´re back at the issues. I know the topic´s been on for many times; But it´s by far the most important question on the slate right now; So we might as well talk about it. All things considering, civilization still seems to hold...
Alpha 1: If it's really, truly how the majority of Europeans are feeling these days, then Lenin must be spinning happily in his grave, for what the author is promoting is socialism of a radical form-making the U.S. citizen poorer so that someone else can become richer. Sorry, I'm willing to help those around the world, but if you think the U.S. is going to foot the bill, you can forget it.
Lenin would feel very, very
alien in contemporary Europe! Maybe not quite
as much as in the USA
, but you´re still badly mistaken.
This isn´t about "footing the bill"; Others are quite prepared to take on their share of the burden, even though it hurts in many cases.
It´s about the author´s anticipation of a potentially severe strategic mistake
to be made by the Bush government. Yes, the USA have been hit harder than anyone else in the 9-11 attacks. It´s a perfectly natural reflex to a seemingly military assault to try responding in kind.
But that is not possible. There is no Al-Quaeda WTC anywhere in the world. It´s not a big tree you can put an axe to. It´s much more like a fungus growing underground and only occasionally rearing its head. And more or less blindly chopping at anything in reach will surely fertilize the ground, but won´t hurt the network.
Alpha 1: A clarification, Klaus: by "the author", I mean the author of the opinion piece, not you. I hope I didn't confuse you!