November 11, 2005

ON TO THE FUTURE (via Mike Daley):

Moving On: Rhetoric at war with reality. (Victor Davis Hanson, November 11, 2005, National Review Online)

All these examples — and far more could be adduced — reveal a radical disconnect between rhetoric and reality. South Americans want unfettered access into America's markets, assume thousands will illegally cross into the United States, and welcome in return billions in cash remittances. Similarly, Spain assumes perpetual NATO protection. In reality that means that the U.S. nuclear deterrent and its vast conventional forces will keep the Mediterranean and Western Europe free from outside threats at little cost to Spain, with a relatively low American profile, and in consultation with Spanish officials. The bad cop United States is not unwelcome to anyone dealing with Iran, because all accept that the scary scenario — America is the only power with the capability and will to stop Iran's nuclear roguery — is not as bad as the worse alternative of the theocracy becoming a major nuclear power. [...]

[B]y castigating the U.S., critics forget that their long-term welfare is not the same as the short-term interests of America. Open markets, military alliances between liberal democracies, and sober joint actions now to prevent worse threats later on are to everyone's advantage. But for right now, the United States might benefit by not welcoming any additional free and unfair trade with South America, or spending billions on European defense, or taking on any more burdens in the Middle East.

In contrast, an India, Japan, and Australia are proud and confident nations. They don't indict our citizens and often appreciate an American global role, whether outsourcing jobs or patrolling regional waters. Unlike the U.N., the EU, and South America, they spare us the sanctimonious lectures and look forward rather than nurse wounds of the past.

The world is changing as we speak. The great untold story of our age is that others need to get a life and the United States needs to move on.

More simply, announce that there's an Axis of Good with whom we plan to have no trade barriers whatsoever and to whose defense we are committed. Others are free to join, if they choose to.

Posted by Orrin Judd at November 11, 2005 10:20 PM
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