Tuesday, September 02, 2008

The U.S. No Longer a Major World Power

Democracy. We love democracy. We live for democracy. We promote democracy throughout the world. And how do we promote democracy, let me ask you: Do we promote democracy by encouraging free market conditions throughout the world, or do we promote democracy by bullying other countries with our military might?

It might seem like an oxymoron. How can our country promote democracy by forcing other countries to do things a certain way? Isn't democracy all about allowing the people of any given country to express themselves freely through open-market, creativity, and a political structure in which the government is established electorally by the will of the people? How can "the will of the people" of any given land be established under coercion?

So, let me ask you: in what respect is the U.S. a major world power? Is this thought due to our military might, or our economic might? I propose that the U.S. became a major world power by economic might. But how do we continue to be a major world power today? Unfortunately, the U.S. has become in debt to every major country on the planet, and we can no longer hang onto our status as a "major world" power by economic might. Therefore we have been attempting for the past 20 years or so to hold onto this title by military might alone.

Some interesting facts on U.S. foreign debt were recently published in a Russia on-line journal: Kommersant. The bottom line is that the U.S. is in debt to Japan ($583 billion) and China ($503 billion), a whole host of other nations, and EVEN Russia to the tune of $65.3 billion dollars.

While other nations continue to grow stronger (producing and accumulating credit) the U.S. continues to grow weaker year by year.

All my friends don't understand why I support Obama in the upcoming election. They are worried government spending will blossom out of control with some of the crazy ideas that guy has. But my major concern in this upcoming election is not with domestic issues, but with foreign policy. The U.S. foreign policy decision of the past years is untenable. We have set ourselves up as a great world bully, bullying other nations into submission to OUR own unique definitions of what constitutes a valid electorate and a valid election (rather than allowing countries to pursue their own local unique versions of democracy). We have set ourselves up to have military presence and military conflict all over the globe (far worse than Brittan of the colonial era) and EXTREME cost.

It pretty much doesn't matter what Obama may do state-side. It won't cost as much money as our constant stream of billions of dollars a day into the U.S. Military presence in foreign lands. And if there is one thing that is clean in my mind about McCain, it is the fact that he intends to continue the U.S.-as-bully mentality of "Might Makes Right".

My friends are concerned that Obama will do things that are costly. But as for me, I'd rather our tax dollars were poured into healthcare for everyone than tanks and guns in Iraq, Afganistan, Georgia, and some hundreds of other places on the globe where the U.S. has a military presence in a foreign land.

The U.S. has lost any credibility that it ever had to claim itself a Major Political Power by years and years of out of control military spending and debt. We may soon reach a point where foreign powers refuse to lend us money, and then what are we going to do? Invade someplace that has plenty of resources claiming that there were irregularities in their last election?

~ Basil