HomeArticleWanting Peace With Russia To Focus Aggressions On China Is Just Being An Imperialist Warmonger

Wanting Peace With Russia To Focus Aggressions On China Is Just Being An Imperialist Warmonger

Listen to a reading of this article:

Republican Congressman Matt Gaetz criticized the Biden administration’s dangerous escalations against Russia on the House floor on Monday, not because he thinks needlessly ramping up cold war brinkmanship with a nuclear-armed nation is an insane thing to do, nor because he believes the US government should cease trying to dominate the world by constantly working to subvert and undermine any nation who disobeys its commands, but because he wants US aggressions to be focused more on China.

“While the Biden administration, the media, and many in congress beat the drums of war for Ukraine, there is a far more significant threat to our nation accelerating rapidly close to home,” Gaetz said. “Argentina, a critical nation and economy in the Americas, has just lashed itself to the Chinese Communist Party, by signing on to the One Belt One Road Initiative. The cost to China was $23.7 billion — a mere fraction of a rounding error when compared to the trillions of dollars our country has spent trying to build democracies out of sand and blood in the Middle East.”

“China buying influence and infrastructure in Argentina to collaborate on space and nuclear energy is a direct challenge to the Monroe Doctrine and far more significant to American security than our latest NATO flirtation in the plains of Eastern Europe,” Gaetz continued. “China is a rising power. Russia is a declining power. Let us sharpen our focus so that we do not join them in that eventual fate.”

For those who don’t know, the “Monroe Doctrine” refers to a decree put forward by President James Monroe in 1823 asserting that Latin America is off limits to European colonialist and imperialist agendas, effectively claiming the entire Western Hemisphere as US property. It essentially told Europe, “Everything south of the Mexican border is our Africa. It’s ours to dominate in the same way you guys dominate the Global South in the Eastern Hemisphere. Those are your brown people over there, these are our brown people over here.”

That this insanely imperialist and white supremacist doctrine is still being cited by high-profile politicians to this day says so much about what the US government is and how it operates on the world stage. This is especially true given that Biden himself just articulated the same idea in so many words last month when he declared that “Everything south of the Mexican border is America’s front yard.”

So on one hand Gaetz is opposing warmongering against Russia and condemning the trillions spent on US wars in the Middle East, which by itself would normally be a good thing. But the fact that he only opposes doing that because he wants to focus imperialist aggressions on another part of the world to preserve US unipolar planetary domination completely nullifies any good which could come from his opposition to aggressions somewhere else.

This is a very common phenomenon on the right end of the US political spectrum; you’ll hear a politician or pundit saying what appear to be sane things against the agendas of DC warmongers, but if you pay attention to their overall commentary it’s clear that they’re not opposing the use of mass-scale imperialist aggression to preserve planetary domination, they’re just quibbling about the specifics of how it should be done.

Tucker Carlson has been making this argument for years, claiming that the US should make peace with Russia and scale back interventionism in the Middle East not because peace is good but because it needs to focus its aggressions on countering China. He inserts this argument into many of his criticisms of US foreign policy on a regular basis; he did it just the other day, criticizing the Biden administration’s insane actions in Ukraine and then adding “Screaming about Russia, even as we ignore China, is now a bipartisan effort.”

Antiwar’s Dave DeCamp summarized this dynamic well in response to a recent Reason article making the same “Make peace with Russia to focus on taking down China” argument, tweeting “Unfortunately, a lot of the opposition to war with Russia is rooted in this idea that the US needs the resources to eventually fight China. We need more people to view war for Taiwan as dangerous and foolish as war for Ukraine.”

Do you see how this works? Do you see how wanting to refocus US firepower on a specific target is not actually better than keeping that firepower diffuse? The difference between “Let’s have peace” and “Let’s have peace with Russia and stop making wars in the Middle East so that we can focus on bringing down China” is the difference between “Stop massacring civilians” and “Stop massacring these civilians because you’ll need your ammunition to massacre those other civilians over there.”

And it’s especially stupid because it’s the exact same agenda. One imperial faction believes it’s best to preserve US hegemony by focusing on bringing down the nations which support and collaborate with China, while the other imperial faction wants to go after China itself more directly. They both support using the US war machine to keep the planet enslaved to Washington and the government agency insiders and oligarchs who run it, they just manufacture this debate about the specifics of how that ought to happen.

This is what Noam Chomsky was talking about when he said, “The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum — even encourage the more critical and dissident views. That gives people the sense that there’s free thinking going on, while all the time the presuppositions of the system are being reinforced by the limits put on the range of the debate.”

That strictly limited spectrum of debate is known as the Overton window, and imperial narrative managers work very hard to keep shoving that window further and further in the favor of the oligarchic empire they serve. In order to prevent us from arguing about whether there should be a globe-spanning capitalist unipolar empire in the first place, they keep us arguing about how that empire’s interests should best be advanced.

The longer the drivers of empire can keep us debating the details of how we should serve them, the longer they can keep us from turning toward them and asking why we should even have them around at all.

_______________________

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Latest comments

  • We can sleep soundly. The disciples once asked Jesus, “Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign when all these things shall begin to be fulfilled?” (Mark 13:4, Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition) He answered: “You will hear of wars and rumors of wars. Don’t be alarmed. These things must happen, but it is not yet the fulfillment [of the sign].” (Matthew 24:6) The global nuclear war, (this will be the fulfillment of the sign of Jesus), will begin as a result of ethnic conflict, “for nation will rise against nation”, like as in 2008 in Georgia. (Matthew 24:7) In the Book of Daniel we read: “At the appointed time [the king of the north] will return back [it also means the break-up of the EU and NATO. Many countries of the former Eastern block will return to a military alliance with Russia], and will enter into the south [this will be the beginning of the WW3], but it will not be as the former [Georgia – 2008] or as the latter [Ukraine], for the dwellers of coastlands of Kittim [the distant West] will come against him, and (he) will broke down [mentally], and will go back.” (11:29, 30a) This time it will be a world war not only by name. “The great power sword” will also be used. (Revelation 6:4) Jesus characterized him in this way: “A frightening things both and extraordinary (related to unusual phenomena) from sky powerful will be.” For that reason there will be significant tremors along the length and breadth of the regions [of strategic importance] and famines, and pestilences. Some ancient manuscripts contain the words “and frosts”. The Aramaic Peshitta: “and will be great frosts”. (Luke 21:11) We call this today “nuclear winter”. In Mark 13:8 there are also words of Jesus: “and disorders” (in the sense of confusion and chaos). The Aramaic Peshitta: “and confusion” (on the state of public order). This extremely detailed sign fits only one war. Jesus stated: “All these are but the beginning of the birth pains.” (Matthew 24:8)

  • Caitlin, you are right from your antiwar perspective. And yet, might as well acknowledge that Carlson and Gaetz are right from an Empire, Kissinger, divide-and-conquer perspective. Related examples:

    *Embargoing Chinese medical exports with all your extraterritorial tools, branding them “vaccine imperialism” and telling the darkies they’ll get their vaccines from our India instead was the standard Imperial policy. But when you subsequently embargo raw-material exports to India as well, that’s the right hand forgetting what the left hand is doing.

    *Cultivating Afghan opium at record volume to pump it into Russian and Iranian veins makes sense in a psychotic, Stratfor way if your goal is to dominate at all costs. But the machine has become so venal that it sees the biggest profits still lie in Western markets–and goes for it. That’s a breakdown in discipline among the henchmen.

    By its own metrics, the postwar dollar empire was a fantastic success, designed by brilliant people who knew how to play for keeps. Never mind the cost to the rest of us. Dismiss this and one is clueless about what we’re up against.

    I’ll stop commenting to your work on Consortium News, their moderation is slow and they’re ridiculously censorious.

  • I wonder if increased beef to china from North America is the reason our prices have gone up so much.

  • “This is what Noam Chomsky was talking about when he said, ‘The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum – even encourage the more critical and dissident views. That gives people the sense that there’s free thinking going on, while all the time the presuppositions of the system are being reinforced by the limits put on the range of the debate.’”
    Remarkable words indeed but as always, the most important part is missing: the signature.
    Who is doing that? Is there a guy somewhere in an Orwellian office watching over the Overton window like the Pythia over the temple of Delphi?
    Is it a think tank like the CFR, the Trilateral, the Atlantic Council with all their subdivisions: the CIA, free-masonry, Zionism, Muslim Brotherhood, the Vatican, Nato?
    Nope! Or only marginally and punctually.
    The great architect, the master of ceremonies is Mammon! That’s who shapes the Overton window.
    Of course all the god’s horses and all the god’s men like Matt Gaetz and Tucker Carlson could tell the truth about a situation that they just cannot have failed to grasp – considering their IQ and their political environment – but it would be like telling your spouse that you are having an affair and that your couple must work its way into the future within that framework. Even if it has been known to work, it’s generally on the kamikaze side.
    And who’s Mammon’s affair with? The military-industrial complex because what got the US out of the Great Depression was WWII (and not FDR’s New Deal contrary to ideological claims) and Truman and his successor (a general as luck would have it :o) decided to keep this recipe going with the Cold War being the backbone of an arms race always first and foremost about lining Mammon’s pockets.
    Of course Gaetz and Carlson could say: “Look, the US makes a bomb every half-hour and this has ramifications into the employment of about two thirds of its population. Questioning that would be like questioning whether you’d be better off with just one lung. So the question is where are we going to drop those babies, directly or by proxy? After several bipartisan meetings, we decided that our best option would be to play this along party lines as always: the Dems will go after Russia while the Reps go after China. This is more comprehensible by the average asshole than complicated geopolitical analyses that nobody understands or gives a fuck about anyway. This approach is good clean fun like rodeos and football matches. It’s a permanent Super Bowl complete with pom-pom girls like Nancy Pelosi – no, that’s a bad example – where you can cheer up your team and vent your frustrations while eating popcorn. This is American exceptionalism and Manifest Destiny which started modestly with the genocide of the Injuns before moving to an industrial scale!”
    Of course they could say that but…

    • Your essay is witty in places, and I may want to think about some of your points further, but for now I would like to comment on these words:” (A)s always, the most important part is missing: the signature.
      Who is doing that? Is there a guy somewhere in an Orwellian office watching over the Overton window like the Pythia over the temple of Delphi?”
      I keep going on about my own theory about there being Soldiers, who live by force, and Priests, who live by deception, as well as Honest Men, who live by fair exchange. I gather that nobody wants to hear about that, so I will try to underplay it here, but I think that what you are alluding to is what I would call the Priesthood and, more importantly, all the laity who SUPPORT the Priesthood, want to please it and want to get into it.
      There is an old line that says that there is no such thing as public opinion, only published opinion. Nowadays, the pollsters can get some sort of a line on what the public really think, but I don’t think it is very stable. The public think one thing today and another next week, if you go by the figures. There is a suspicion that even when talking to pollsters, people shape their opinions to what they think is socially acceptable, so that their opinions will be reported as cuter than they really are.
      Think about what life was like when Christianity reigned supreme in Europe. The priest was, for many people, the only person you knew who could read and write. You trusted him in all things as many people still trust a doctor on medical matters. You believed that you would burn for all eternity if you had evil thoughts, so you took care that your thoughts would be as pure and holy as possible. Even if you weren’t one of the desperately poor majority, and you want to school and learned to read and write yourself, you learned that you were absolutely dependent in all things on the opinion of people above you. As a schoolboy, you could be flogged for having perfectly reasonable thoughts, if teachers or other superiors became aware of them. At the same time, you would have become aware that the rules that applied to you didn’t apply to people in higher positions. The bishop or the baron, for example, could have a mistress, and nobody would disapprove, or even dare to say anything. A powerful man’s sins could even be officially ratified, as in the examples of William of Normandy or Cesare Borgia – both the illegitimate sons of powerful men, whose illegitimacy was officially wiped out, and who went on to have brilliant official careers.
      What I am trying to say is that there was an official Overton Window, which was very different from the one we have today, but which people accepted because they had no choice. (That is the point of an Overton Window.) The Overton Window wasn’t created or even supervised by any one person, or even exclusively by one group – the Church. There were people whose official position depended on their enthusiastic support and enforcement of the Overton Window. They were what I call the Priesthood, the people who live by deception. Note that not all of them knew they were pulling the public’s legs. Many of the duller ones probably quite sincerely believed, and, as we know if we study history, there were sometimes sad incidents where the official line was revised – the Overton Window shifted – and a percentage of the priesthood couldn’t accept that what they had always believed, and, indeed, enforced on others, was a lie, and that they would now have to start believing and teaching another lie. Some of them came to sad ends, like being burned at the stake. Others probably starved slowly, after having lived in relative luxury during their official careers.
      I don’t think our present position is as much different from that as we might like to think. I have been lucky: I was the son of a successful farmer, and always knew that I could survive somehow at home if I had to, so there was a limit to the amount of insults and official impudence I would put up with. But most people still have to be prepared to suck up to survive. They LOOK UP to the Priesthood and want to please it. Caitlin doesn’t: I respect her for that. But there is courage and there is recklessness. It is courageous to fight the filth and corruption – the people in authority – if you can do it and survive. But most people can’t. So you have an Overton Window, and it only shifts slowly. It also often shifts in silly directions. I think we get comfortable, and ignorant in our comfortable lives, and start believing silly things. We only get angry and scared when things go wrong. When that happens, it is the job of the clever part of the Priesthood, the journalists, to get us back under control and restore the Overton Window, perhaps with a slightly different view of the sky than it had before.
      When that fails, you are apt to get something like the French Revolution of 1789 or the Russian Revolution of 1917. We need something like that now. (It would be nice if we could have a peaceful overthrow of the corrupt order, as happened in England with the overthrow of King James II in 1688, or the collapse of the Soviet Union in about 1980, but I don’t think that is on the cards. The filth in authority are too well entrenched, and there are too many of them. The public still believe in the Church of Education.)
      I’m sorry if this is too long and rambling.

    • This sounds more like a myth, so we all think that it is impossible to make change.
      To start with, less than half of Americans work, not 2/3. It is hard to find numbers for 2022, and we are constantly told that “nobody wants to work anymore”, whatever that means.
      It is too long to refute the whole story. WW2 did not bring prosperity, prosperity arrived after the war ended. So I will just skip to the present time economics.
      At this point American expansionism is based on the petro-dollar.
      The globe-spanning US military burns LOTS of oil products, and occupies 800 bases to control the oil trade, as well as invade the countries with the highest oil reserves.
      I do not think American people are getting overall richer for that. They are being fed lies that they are taking part in that prosperity. But in reality even Australia and Canada have a higher standard of living than the US.
      The US government does not govern anymore, they just take on more debt, and print more dollars, and then try to keep getting re-elected. They have to keep participating in militarism so they can keep printing new dollars to pay for their political priorities.

      • Fine comment, thanks.
        I figure “nobody wants to work anymore” because shit job and gig job wages won’t pay for the gas to get them there and back.
        There are several fast food places in my town that are still running limited hours with their dining sections closed. (Our “lockdown’ was over on May 1st, 2020, and our covid stats are better than most in the US.) One such empty store is next door to another fast food outlet than keeps both takeout lanes parked around the block every hour they are open. The second one pays a living wage, and that’s the whole difference. It is an ass over elbow workplace and if you fail to smile every minute, you are out the door, and the next smiley cog gets a turn. Other places can’t find staff, the one that pays decently has a waiting list.
        My 26-year-old son tends bar, and he is also a bouncer, a jui jitsu student, and a rock climber. When all the bars closed, he took some time off on unemployment, but when his check was cut in half (five months into a 17 month shutdown for his industry in that state), he went to work for Amazon. It damn near broke his health. He went home every day groaning from the physical demands. He made almost as much working forty hours a week for Amazon as he had made working 24 hours a week in the bar. He’s back behind the bar now, and swears to never take another corporate job.
        I’m relating personal stories because that’s all I know about it, but I have a funny feeling that a lot of folks have dropped out of the above-ground straight economy for good.
        I’m told (that’s right, this is hearsay) that there are factories in this metro area where a reasonably bright person who shows up on time and wants to do a good job can make $35/hr in cash, paid daily, for unskilled assembly work. I was making something like that 15 years ago as a systems analyst and software project manager, but half of it went to various deductions before I saw it. Without taxes or overhead, that would pay the rent and feed the babies, even in the metro.
        Is it possible that significant numbers of workers are finding better wages off the books?

    • I think the Overton window is defined by the MSM. That in turn lately is controlled by the CIA. There is now even a whole new department for just defining the Overton window: US Agency for Global Media.

      • My point exactly! Who’s the CIA working for? Wall Street that created it. As well as the Pentagon as General Smedley Butler explained in his 1935 book War is a Racket. All these guys are working for Mammon is what I am saying. Call it Money if you prefer. It’s the modern divinity that has replaced the Church Paul Rackeman talks about in his answer. It’s the alpha and omega of everything. For these guys, a sentence that doesn’t contain the word dollar is worthless. All the rest (politics, MSM…) is window-dressing and propagandizing for Mammon. On a side note, you say only half the Americans work to counter my allegation that two thirds have jobs linked to the military in the war economy that is America. I meant of course two thirds of the Americans who work. You also say the Americans didn’t get rich during the war but after it. That doesn’t contradict what I wrote. Sure they didn’t immediately get affluent after selling the first WWII bomb they made but it created jobs and this rapidly paid off after the war, not only with the arms sales to fight in Korea, then in Vietnam, then all over the joint where the US now drops a bomb every half-hour but also through the Marshall Plan which directly came out of WWII and was an extraordinary outlet for American goods and culture and created a hell of a lot of jobs in the US while the European countries were recuperating. All the US wars are about finding new markets. It’s the NED’s first mission and it’s bipartisan. That’s why they encourage and fund the color revolutions. It’s all about Money. That’s all I’m saying and it ain’t gonna be easy to prove the contrary. Cheers! :o)

        • I get the impression, from this post and your earlier one (which I already commented on) that you have a pretty strong dislike of money as such. I know that is a widespread view (“money is the root of all evil”) and one that the Christian Church supports at least some of the time, but it is one that has never appealed to me.
          I think the invention of money was an enormous boon to mankind. The invention of coined money allowed a huge expansion in specialisation in production, and allowed a great many jobs to be done well by independent, free tradesmen that would previously have had to be done badly by in-house slaves, if they were done at all.
          I know that the accumulation of capital brings political power, but that is a fault of the political laziness of the public, rather than of the political activism of the capital-owner.
          Please note that I am NOT defending the corrupt system of government-issued, fundamentally worthless money that we have now. I am defending sound money, which can be gold or silver. A fundamentally honest money system, with ALL paper issued amounting to a claim on gold or silver could easily be the basis of a sophisticated modern system of money transfer if we wanted it. But our governments and our Priests in particular don’t want it. What we have now, with the central bank AIMING AT 2 per cent inflation for year, amounts to a system of DEFAULT on the government’s debts at a rate of 2 per cent per year. At present, that isn’t enough: prices are going up by quite a lot more that 2% per year, and the basic money supply (which is another way to look at inflation) is going up by hugely more.
          Business people know all about that, of course, and they aim to get in on the act by owing more in paper than they own in paper, so that they also benefit by defaulting at 2% or whatever it might be per year.
          I get the impression that people who condemn money must never have read Adam Smith, and must never have read Ayn Rand’s great essay on money, in the form of a speech by one of her characters, in her book, “Atlas Shrugged.” If you are going to convince any serious person that money is evil, you are going to have to answer that speech, or somehow take Adam Smith to pieces and explain how free exchange is evil.
          I know Fidel Castro took it for granted that exchange was evil. I have seen a quote in which he complained about his peasants, saying that “everyone bought and sold.”

  • We, the Woke, We Who Already Understand What’s Going On continue to vote our warmongering, false-narrative-creating oppressors’ bought-and-paid-for R and D agents into public offices time and time again.
     
    What, exactly, does the word “revolution” mean? Is there universal agreement on what the word “revolution” means? If there is, please tell me precisely HOW people “revolt”? What would the BEHAVIOR of “revolting” be? Would We, the Woke, We Who Already Understand What’s Going On be picking up guns and running down the streets with our hair on fire, each of us yelling in perfect synchronicity with the collective “I’m as mad as hell and I’m not going to take it any more!”? Would We, the Woke, We Who Already Understand What’s Going On be guillotining some VIPs on the White House lawn? Would We, the Woke, We Who Already Understand What’s Going On be marching hand in hand down Penn. Ave. demand, demand, demanding that the Elite behave better, or else? (“or else” just exactly WHAT?!)
     
    Here’s what you, me, We, the Woke, We Who Already Understand What’s Going On are eventually going to HAVE TO DO because
     
    there. is. no. other. way. to remove our warmongerng, false-narrative-creating oppressors’ 536 Rs and Ds from federal elected positions of power. (If you know of another way, please spell it out, right here, right now and, BTW, reading another hundred really great books that tell you who’s holding the reins of power in one hand and your balls in the other, wishing upon a star, dream, dream, dreaming; hoping and praying and deep, deep, deep self-study and drug-trips are not going to do that job.)
     
    THIS is how you “revolt”. If you do not want More Of The Same that you’ve gotten after every election in the past, do not vote for another R or D, ever, no matter what an R or D promises! Jimmy Dore explains EXACTLY why. If you DO want More Of The Same, when you walk into the voting booth, just vote for another R or D, makes no difference which. (The latter is what the tens of millions of direct and indirect employees of, and the investors in, the MIC are going to do. They’re going to vote for No. 1 and they don’t give a shit if doing that ultimately leads to WWIII; they know precisely what they’re doing and why they’re doing it. )

  • Tucker Carlson having a go at a Chinese gold medal winner, with many in the US media also attacking her win.

    https://www.rt.com/news/548778-us-reaction-china-gold-medalist/

  • The evolution of human species is still ongoing. Both nurture and genetics have significant role in the formation of a person. We should not let our children grow up in front of the screens and instead should model for them what being human means.
    Saying let’s fake friending one country to destroy another is not how human conversation works.

  • For far too long the US has held domain over South America, destroying socialist governments who wanted to help their people, by using coups and proxy wars, even today Washington still uses these tactics, much of what ails the world today is down to aggressive/bellicose US foreign policy.

    Argentina should be able to do deals with whatever country it sees fit to do deals with, this should be of no concern to a foreign government thousands of miles away in Washington DC.

    I have to laugh at the threats thrown around in Washington over China and is growth, knowing that China supplies much to the USA market including medicines, with Australia as the tip of the US spear in the economic war against China, (Australia has lost billions in export trade such as beef to China) the Australian economy has taken a huge hit.

    The US has also taken to patrolling waters in and around China, in an attempt to disrupt trade and turn neighbouring countries against China, in area of disputes. On top of this the US is in the process of surrounding China with military bases on island chains, and if that weren’t enough US personnel are in Taiwan training Taiwanese troops on how to use missile launchers etc, when the US promised not to interfere in Taiwanese/Chinese relations.

    • The times in which we live are far too serious for people to continue onward under the same cultural paradigms and perceptions prominent over the past several decades. Lazy, half-baked conclusions and ineffective, shallow problem-solving paradigms seem to have become acceptable or even standard. While the underlying causes and mechanisms for the observed evolution in “the American mind” since roughly 1980 are a topic for discussion, the importance of the ability to quickly and consistently discern the truth, that is, to identify “what is”, CANNOT be overstated, most especially here in 2022 following historically unprecedented, ongoing global events and circumstances.

      So when someone like our fellow reader, Republicofscotland, states,

      [For far too long the US has held domain over South America, destroying socialist governments who wanted to help their people, by using coups and proxy wars, even today Washington still uses these tactics, much of what ails the world today is down to aggressive/bellicose US foreign policy.]

      sans any sort of supporting evidence or even the slightest bit of subjective additional supporting details or content, particularly considering the bewilderingly ridiculous assumption anyone would “buy it” at face value, I must pause and consider wtf is happening here.

      The obvious solutions to this problem? That’s easy…just get those afflicted to start treating life and the effect of their actions on others and the greater universe as consequential and of importance and start paying f*%ing attention.

      I mean, for the love of God, “For far too long the US has held domain over South America, destroying socialist governments who wanted to help their people…”?

      If this statement is sourced in casual ignorance, probably due to inexperience/young age, so be it. Otherwise, anyone making such a statement needs to realize, “They have been lying to you, and you don’t seem to care much.”

      Not acceptable. So get busy. Stop shirking the responsibility of assigning significance. It matters and we need you

  • The is no anti-war movement in America. I’m a Vietnam veteran and have been a member of the Veterans for Peace since 2003. I’ve also been a member of the Vietnam Veterans against the War since 1972. So I’ve been a member of 2 anti-war groups and we have never stopped an American invasion or American imperialism in 50 years. Now I’m just tired and sad of my own complicity and acquiescence to all the blood and pain that the United States has caused during my pathetic life.

    • Alan, I respectfully suggest your life is no more pathetic than that of most of us, likely less so if I read between the lines. All of us who have struggled to make what we hoped would be a better world, and now, looking around, know we have failed, also know that at least we made gestures toward the good, true, and beautiful. This blog is itself such a gesture, is it not? Perhaps like you, this boomer will go to his grave thinking that never did a generation promise so much social justice in its youth, yet deliver so little–indeed, make matters even worse–in the end.

    • I would like to hypothesize, my friend Alan, there may be a more correct, and certainly more hopeful perspective you may consider. Is it really necessary to obtain results one notch south of perfection to declare some modicum of success? We are talking about human beings here, very large groupings of human beings, each living in a world of resource scarcity, with literally no rules or balancing mechanics governing each person’s starting conditions. I mean, seriously, don’t light a match.

      My experience shows the United States, like every other attempt at human resource management going back to the start of history, is proof governments don’t work. Of course, evidence also shows the absolute lack of one is much, much worse in most cases.

      That said, comparisons against the historical record seem to indicate that overall, the USA has been quite a diamond in the rough. Also seems logical to conclude you had a hand in it.

  • A Polish psychiatrist named Andrzej Łobaczewski (1921-2007)proposed thesis was that the regimes he suffered under, including the United States to which he immigrated in the late 70s, are most accurately described as pathocracies, ruled by a small group of genetic psychopaths, with a wider group of willing lackeys with psychopathic tendencies, creating a political culture of “acquired psychopathy.”

    The masses duped by the Orwellian distortion of language that both enables and accompanies pathocratic rule, for they naturally characterize and translate any pathological behavior and speech into the moral and rational categories with which they are familiar due to their inability to imagine the psychological world in which the psychopaths live.

    • Definitely suffering from some pathology bcs they apparently think that only some can hear them but not others when they say lets pretend we befriend Russia for a time to fight China.
      Or when their plans for a nuclear war with Russia are being publicly proposed.

    • His book was published in Red Pill Press. He has an interesting thesis-that a population with about 1-3% psychopaths will allow, like helium balloons placed in a circus tent, to float to the top based on their capacity for heartless aggression.
      Psychopaths aggregate well, as they have similar worldviews; but they will kill each other on a moment’s notice. They feel safer when each has an armed faction. They are terrified if disarmed in a disarmed group. These are my impressions after reading Ponerology, L’s major work.

      • Sounds like a detailed description of oligarchs.

    • The description is accurate, Liz, but doesn’t the pathology lie in the capitalist system, not merely in the particular people running it? If we could erase all of them with a wave of the hand, wouldn’t replacements seamlessly appear, and the system suffer no more than a hiccup?

    • I am of the opinion you are right in the groove on this one. However, and not that you would disagree, but it seems important to point out that while the theory is in all liklihood true, nothing concerning biology is ever so simple in totality, not to mention the fact I personally believe some non-insignificant portion of the population is actually keen enough (and wise enough?) to identify if not at least partially mitigate this effect.

  • Wanting to make peace with Russia, a country that has long been part of civilisation, in order to protect ourselves against people who think that it is only natural and right that they should kill us all (including their cousins in Viet Nam, Japan, and so on), seems quite reasonable to me.
    Humans are killer apes. I know you (Caitlin) argue that you are not like that yourself. However, the history of the Chinese and their massacres of outlying populations within their reach proves that they are. We may think that they are less bloodthirsty than us, but that is just because we know our history better than we know theirs. Ask the Tibetans, if there are any full-blood Tibetans left. (I think only their mothers were Tibetan.)

    • So you’re here to help drum up war with China, based on a purely specious bullshit argument that the Chinese are natural born killer apes. And you really think Americans know their own history better than the Chinese know theirs? You have no clue as to the poverty of historical education in the US? Most Americans could barely find their own state on a map, much less any other country, or know one goddamn thing about its history. You sound a lot like those Americans.

    • Your anthropology is a few hundred years out of date, friend.
      Hobbes was wrong. So was Rousseau.
      Our ancestors were not feral slopes murdering each other for dominance and mates. Neither were our ancestors sweet and gentle forest fairies, at one with each other and the planet. We are human beings, and our arrangements are always more complicated than that.
      Nevertheless, the archaeological record makes it plain that cooperation, not internecine competition, grew the human brain, gave us language, and taught us how to learn and change.
      When you consider the ways of the chimpanzee and the gorilla, you are observing the results of an adaptive strategy our hominid ancestor species left behind millions of years ago. That alpha male social arrangement is the reason our nearest genetic cousins still live in the woods eating grubs, and we do not.
      Your observations of how centralized power structures behave are apt and factual. Your “killer ape” explanation for these behaviors is, in my opinion, facile and logically untenable. In a top-down social hierarchy, the will of a very few individuals coerces and constrains policy, even to the murder of neighbors. The natural will of most individuals in any human social group is for peaceful and quiet living, marked by constructive efforts to better the lot of the offspring.
      The very best investigation of historic and prehistoric human social arrangements is also the one most lately published: Graeber and Wengrow’s “The Dawn of Everything.” I recommend it to anyone who wants to grow and evolve their understanding of ourselves and our world. It has required me to question some highly cherished and comfortable notions, and in my life that has always worked out for the best. Cheers and regards–

      • Thank you for an insightful and evocative comment. You’ve persuaded me (and I hope others) to take a look at “The Dawn of Everything.”

      • I’ve never read Hobbes. I got a lot of my ideas from a man named Robert Ardrey, who wrote several entertaining books about human evolution in I suppose the 1970s. He seems to have vanished without trace, which I think is a shame. Even if he was wrong about some details, discussion of his ideas and facts would have been enlightening, whereas I think a lot of modern “thinkers” just sugar-coat things to please the ladies.
        (For what it’s worth, I also picked up some interesting ideas from a book called “The Descent of Woman,” by a feminist writer – don’t remember her name unfortunately. She argued the “life on the seashore” hypothesis, which seems to me very persuasive in explaining how our differences from the other great apes evolved.)
        When I say that I “got a lot of my ideas” from Robert Ardrey, I mean that he added details and explanations to a broad outline of how life works that I had already developed from my life on a farm, and from secondary-school biology, and from having read Darwin’s “Origin of Species.”
        I’ve printed out your comment, and will put a look at that book you mention on my “to do” list. It’s a long list, and things get moved around on it as my priorities change, so I won’t promise to do anything about it any time soon.
        I accept that co-operation is important, and in fact that is what “capitalism” is, but I think that people who like to pretend that we are all really (mostly) nice tend to leave the military aspect of history, and the deception element (official religion) out of the picture. Those aspects were completely left out of Adam Smith’s “Wealth of Nations” – I’ve read that too. Like it or not, there are Soldiers and Priests as well as Honest Men, and the Soldiers and Priests often spend more effort on degrading and enslaving the Honest Men of their own society and nation that they do on resisting the Soldiers of other nations.

      • hodgicus,

        Wonderful!

    • Lt. Col. Dave Grossman wrote a great book, On Killing. Many of us cannot kill humans, and some of us can. Generals all know that.

    • You make the noises of the US empire, accusing China of raping Tibetans, when the Dalai Lama is a known CIA asset. China does have 800 military bases circling the planet, oh wait, they don’t.

  • Et Tu, Tucker?

  • To prevent further F-35 crashes, let’s cancel their production and “the program” itself.
    The Program = Mafia = Lockheed Martin.
    Why blame China and not Lockheed Martin?

    • CIA should investigate how the F-35 jets with 300 known defects were sold to the Defense Department and the allies. After selling these to the militaries, Lockheed Martin will be paid again to find the fixes for the known defects. Mafia.

  • If you think the Taliban marching to Kabul in ONE week blooodlessly and unopposed was ORGANIC – think again !

    It was just Russia and China clearing the Belt Road by STEALTH !
    They can make ANYTHING the ZIO/US/NATO has INOPERABLE !

  • The thousand or so ZIO/US military bases surrounding the world are soon to become a major LIABILITY !
    Russia has WAR ‘prevention’ weaponry – as does China !
    It CANNOT be penetrated !

  • OMG Caitlin said the dreaded P-word.
    PEACE!
    My internet is being cut off since I started commenting here.
    Warmongers love their cyberwars.

  • OMG … “The cost to China was $23.7 billion — a mere fraction of a rounding error when compared to the trillions of dollars our country has spent trying to build democracies out of sand and blood in the Middle East.”” So the US was actually trying to build democracy in Iraq? and Syria? by attacking their democratically elected leader? and he actually seriously refers to the Monroe Doctrine? Mat Gaetz has taken up comedy. He’s no longer a serious politician and should be replaced.

    • How dare China use US methods. South America belings to the US along with the rest of the world apparently.

  • “…. trying to build democracies out of sand and blood in the Middle East.”
    Says it all really. The US (along with the UK)doesn’t like to remind us of the democracy thrown out by them in 1953 in Iran because the country wanted to nationalize its own oil …

    • IIRC, nobody thought Venezuela was a threat to America before they nationalized their oil.

  • ‘Are you a fight Russia or fight China conservative’ is almost as entertaining as ‘do you support mandates or oppose vaccines’, although I have ongoing debate on whether to agree with Camus or attend the church of Kierkegaard.

    • Yes, quite a quandry. Evidently, the majority of truckers in Canada protesting mandates are vaccinated. Go figure.

      • Only two options in an authoritarian’s world-both of them hers/his. A third option is enough to compromise the other two, which is necessary to negate the either/or mindset of the obedient, influential and opportunistic.

        Perhaps we can slowly pull back from the true/false test of life to at least multiple choice, if not fill-in-the-blank and, dare to dream, an ongoing essay section that could actually build relationships rather than contain them.

        • I think they did away with essay questions years ago. Too subjective. Multiple guess is much easier. You are either with us or against us.

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