HUBRIS IS NOT A STRATEGY

28 comments

Posted on 13th October 2012 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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Maybe it is meant to be. Mitt Romney is a Prophet (Boomer) leader. He is sure of himself. He’s a pompous ass. He promises to balance the budget, while cutting taxes, and massively increasing war spending. Americans are drawn to people who know how to tell really big lies. Fourth Turnings have always had a Prophet leader or leaders at the helm. Fourth Turnings always have a major war. Romney can’t wait to gain control over our military machine. He’s going to make the rest of the world understand who’s boss. We’ll know in three weeks.

Hubris Is Not a Strategy, Either

by Gene Healy

Gene Healy is a vice president at the Cato Institute and author of Cult of the Presidency.

Added to cato.org on October  9, 2012

This article appeared in The DC Examiner on October 9, 2012.

It’s telling that the most quotable line from Mitt Romney’s foreign policy speech Monday is a reheated zinger from Rudy Giuliani’s 2008 Republican National Convention speech: “Hope is not a strategy.”

In the 2008 GOP race, the hawkish New York mayor served as a foil for peace candidate Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas. Paul consistently outpolled Giuliani, but it’s Rudy’s rhetoric that lives on in today’s Romney campaign. As The Examiner’s Philip Klein cracked Monday, “that Romney speech was not aimed at Ron Paul voters.”

In his speech at the Virginia Military Institute, Romney called for a new approach to the Middle East, based on “these bedrock principles: America must have confidence in our cause, clarity in our purpose and resolve in our might.” Those are attitudes, not principles. And if jut-jawed self-assurance that we know what we’re doing in the Middle East was the key to victory, we’d have a little more to show from the last 11 years of war. Hope is not a strategy, but hubris isn’t either.

At VMI, Romney criticized President Obama’s “pivot to Asia” as a sign we’re neglecting our allies elsewhere. Romney’s not against pivoting toward Asia per se, since “China’s recent assertiveness is sending chills through the region.” But also he wants us to refocus on Europe, brush back Putin, arm the Syrian rebels and get tougher with Iran. A Romney administration will pivot like a dervish, directing American force and authority everywhere at once. At a press conference the morning of the speech, his top foreign policy aides even refused to rule out boots on the ground in Libya.

“It is the responsibility of our president to use America’s great power to shape history,” Romney told the VMI cadets. Actually, the president’s responsibility, per his oath of office in Article II, Section 1, is to “preserve, protect, and defend” the U.S. Constitution.

That document says nothing about using the U.S. military to bend the arc of history. When it comes to foreign policy, the Constitution has humbler goals. As the Preamble explains, the federal government was established to “provide for the common defence” of the United States and “secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.”

Today, as my colleague Ben Friedman points out, “The United States does not have a defense budget. The adjective is wrong.” Our bloated military budget and our overextended force posture have “little to do with the requirements of protecting Americans.”

In last week’s debate, Romney argued that “the amount of debt we’re adding, at a trillion a year, is simply not moral.” Yesterday he insisted that we must show the world that “we have the will and the wisdom to … roll back our unsustainable debt [and] to reverse the catastrophic cuts now threatening our national defense.” But when the governor complains about debt and — in the same sentence — declares 20 percent of the federal budget off limits, you have to wonder how morally serious he is.

In a speech last year, departing Defense Secretary Robert Gates worried about indiscriminate cuts to the Pentagon’s budget, then approaching some $700 billion a year. “A smaller military,” he warned, “will be able to go fewer places and be able to do fewer things.” One can be forgiven the heretical thought that the last decade would have gone better with a U.S. military that went “fewer places” and did “fewer things.”

Some of Mitt Romney’s supporters argue that he’s too smart to believe his own bellicose rhetoric. They hope that if elected, he’ll shake the Etch a Sketch again and pivot toward realism and restraint. So who says hope isn’t a strategy?

28 Comments
  1. DaveL says:

    “He promises to balance the budget, while cutting taxes, and massively increasing war spending.”

    Surely there has to be a difference between defense spending and war spending.

    13th October 2012 at 6:01 pm

  2. stan says:

    As I have said before, Romney will never be president. In 3 weeks, Obama will win the election.

    13th October 2012 at 6:12 pm

  3. Administrator says:

    DaveL

    We could defend ourselves spending $300 billion. That’s what we were spending in 2000. The extra $500 billion is to create war.

    13th October 2012 at 6:14 pm

  4. a cruel accountant says:

    Admin for Pres.

    13th October 2012 at 6:22 pm

  5. Ron says:

    Stan,i figure americans are stupid,so mabe your right.Our useless president well remain in office.
    So all the waiting for the country to fail well go faster under Obama.We well get more of what we have now,more spending and more debt.A country with no leadership.
    The following of the communist manifesto to overload the system and bring the country to its knees well keep going.
    Ron Paul or at least most of his ideas would have been the way to go.Romney and the republicans are to stupid to throw him a bone and get all his supporters votes.I figure he well take about ten percent away from Romney and Obama well stay in power.

    13th October 2012 at 6:39 pm

  6. Ron says:

    Dave we have enough bombs and missles and nuclear subs to destroy the planet if someone had the balls to do it.Not to mention the hints of what all those classified shuttle mission things in outer space can do.Its all about money and power.We dont need to rule the world or control it.
    I think the rich folk feel its about time for a correction.To many people.Brown people and others they dont feel meet some standard of theyres.Like planned parethood was supposed to do.A civil war with riots and the whole nine yards well thin the herd.Sometimes when i look around i almost agree with them.If your a rich person with a retreat well stocked with your own security force.Your not to worried if millions of average people die.Afterwards you well just take your money(or gold)and just continue making money and taking advantage of whatever situation presents itself.

    13th October 2012 at 6:54 pm

  7. KaD says:

    In three weeks Morgan Stanley will win the election and the American middle class will lose.

    13th October 2012 at 6:55 pm

  8. Thunderbird says:

    Romney does not know what he is getting into until he becomes president, That is when the people will see his true colors and makeup.

    Did we not find out Obama’s colors and makeup until he became president?

    Everything up to this point is speculation. Notice in the debates that Romney & Ryan have talked but the president and his VP Biden keep quiet about their agenda?

    I think if Romney wins the White House he will be surprised at what he finds. Then we will see his colors and makeup. He may find he has to change his entire plan.

    13th October 2012 at 6:55 pm

  9. Eddie says:

    War is likely regardless of which of these two narcissistic doofuses gets elected in November.

    Romney is particularly worrisome for his simplistic foreign policy POV…but Obummer is a willing tool of the military/corporate war machine too.

    13th October 2012 at 6:55 pm

  10. Muck About says:

    As we’ve been preaching for years. It doesn’t matter one whit who gets elected. There is no way to solve the problems of leveraged credit and debt without a massive economic reset which will be avoided at all costs to the population until things collapse.

    As Stucky would say, “You could elect Jeebus and even he couldn’t let us down easy!”

    MA

    13th October 2012 at 7:52 pm

  11. DeathByHubris says:

    President Romney+Fourth Turning=Death By Hubris

    13th October 2012 at 11:06 pm

  12. KaD says:

    Thought you might like this; and the comments below: http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2012/10/massive-manure-pile-delivered-to-ohio-democratic-offices/

    14th October 2012 at 12:20 am

  13. Bruce says:

    If Romney wins there will be a meeting and the PTB Bankers will show him how to put his pants on. Since Romney is an establishment PTB financial Insider so he may already know the drill. If Obama wins he may get a quick refresher course but he already knows the drill too. Who ever is in office next, no matter who they appoint to this or that, or what they claim to believe in, they will do exactly as they are instructed to by the Owners and we will stay on exactly the same course that we have been on. A vote for Romney or Obama is an act of treason against the people of the USA and their constitution weather they like it or not, the Flag and the Republic that it’s supposed to stand for. We are Doomed.

    14th October 2012 at 7:00 am

  14. flash says:

    Romney will get the Whitehouse, millions of urban blacks will get their excuse to riot,the Police Sate will have an excuse to impose full blown martial law, Netanyahu will get his war with Iran and the Republic as we once knew it will ease to exist.

    In a nutshell that’s my prediction for post election.

    http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/will-the-election-results-cause-massive-riots-to-erupt-all-over-america

    The election is nearly four weeks away, and many Obama supporters are already threatening to riot if Obama loses. The following are some very disturbing messages that were posted on Twitter recently that have been reposted on Twitchy.com….

    “If Romney wins I’m Starting a Riot….Who’s WIT ME???”

    “I Hope The USA Is Well Aware That If In The Event This Character Romney Wins The Election, The People Will Start A Country Wide Riot! #Power”

    “If Romney is elected president, its gon be a riot its gon be a riot.”

    “If ROMNEY GETS IN THE WHITE HOUSE …U MIGHT AS WELL KILL ME NOW …..CAUSE ITS GONNA BE A ************ RIOT !!!”

    “If Romney became President and took away welfare Downtown Cincinnati would become a riot”

    “If Romney takes away food stamps 2 Chainzz in this bit IMMA START A RIOT”

    “If Romney wins. (which i highly doubt) THERE WILL BE A RIOT—”

    The following are a few more tweets that I found which threaten a potential riot if Obama loses the election….

    From @joecools_world….

    “Need 2 come up wit a game plan if Romney win…. Riot all thru Newark”

    From @killacate….

    “I swear on everything I love if Romney wins ima riot. I don’t even care if its just me.”

    14th October 2012 at 7:29 am

  15. Administrator says:

    If Romney wins, I won’t be taking my short cut down 37th street in West Philly on November 7.

    14th October 2012 at 8:09 am

  16. Jeebus, God's Son says:

    “He promises to balance the budget, while cutting taxes, and massively increasing war spending.” —Admin

    My child,

    Have you not read the Scripture whereby I saith, “All things are possible to those who believe and wear magic underwear.”?

    Or, “You shall say unto this Mountain of Debt, ‘fall into the sea’, and if you just believe it, so shall it be?

    Come forth from your unbelief before your time on Earth is up.

    Jeebs

    14th October 2012 at 10:38 am

  17. AWD says:

    Romney: collapse and destruction due to war with Iran, Russia, and China.

    Obama: collapse and destruction due to being over-run by the FSA, civil war and race war.

    Either way, we go down fighting….

    14th October 2012 at 11:38 am

  18. DaveL says:

    Jim: I have no problem with spending less, just spend it right. I’m all for high tech defense.

    14th October 2012 at 3:05 pm

  19. Thunderbird says:

    Nature is too big for Obama, Romney, or any of us to control. Life will go on after the election. Wars will happen after the election. America will go on after the election.

    14th October 2012 at 3:12 pm

  20. AKAnon says:

    Thundbird-Wow, a TBP optimist. Pollyanna.

    15th October 2012 at 2:10 am

  21. Zarathustra says:

    The US is well equipped for a WW2 type conventional war. However will not occur unless it involved Canada or Mexico since massive amphibious invasions aren’t possible when your opponent has thousands of nukes. A full blown nuclear exchange would end up in a draw. As for Iran, any pre-emptive attack could prove very costly for the US even if it doesn’t lead to a wider conflict. Picture three US carriers on the bottom of the Persian Gulf, more US casualties since Vietnam and a moribund world economy (as if we don’t have that already).

    I have dreams of being the US President. I would give a national address and tell people about all the crimes Israel has perpetrated against us, and against humanity. I would tell them about the Levon affair and the USS Liberty. They spying and stealing of technology. The zionist control over media and Congress. The ethnic cleansing and apartheid. I would tell them that we are on the wrong side of history and justice but to rectify that, the zionist lobbies have to be killed and the only way to do that is to sever diplomatic relations with Israel until they join the IAEA and open their nuclear facilities and arsenal to inspection and come to an equitable agreement with the Palestinians. I don’t care if it would be a one state or two state solution, but the status quo is simply unacceptable. Then I would lift all sanctions currently on Iran and apply them to Israel until they comply. Naturally all foreign aid to the zionist regime would be terminated.

    Other than the nutcase christian zionists, most americans don’t give a fuck about israel anyway and correctly think we have no dog in that fight. The goodwill we would earn from majority of the arab world by these actions would be enormous.

    Having won the war on terrorism by these actions, I would then demolish the police state and play golf while the world economy still continued on it’s shitslide. Israel is a pimple that could be easily popped by a president with some balls. Nobody fucks with the banksters and lives. JFK could tell you something about that.

    15th October 2012 at 2:48 am

  22. Nonanonymous says:

    Zara, you’re still living in the cold war era. Wow, houda thunk it?

    If Romney were to live up to his word, he would have to bring Wall Street and the federal bureaucracy to heel. Good fucking luck.

    Zara, go fuck yourself. Romney can fuck himself, too. Fucking liar.

    Riots? In the USA? Go fuck yourself, el flash shithead. They’ll burn down their own neighborhoods, maybe bash a few heads in, but they won’t venture out of their own neighborhoods. They may be dumb fucks, but they’re not fools. Flash is a fool, the brothers are not. They know what’s waiting for them on the other side of the street. The fucking second amendment, mother furthers. Now, go fuck yourself again, el flash douch bago.

    15th October 2012 at 7:09 pm

  23. Nonanonymous says:

    Yeah, I fucking said that!

    15th October 2012 at 7:13 pm

  24. Nonanonymous says:

    I’m not running for office, and I approved this message.

    15th October 2012 at 7:16 pm

  25. Zarathustra says:

    Nonanonymous, you need to work on your reading comprehension. Maybe the University of Phoenix could help out.

    16th October 2012 at 2:19 am

  26. eugend66 says:

    Maybe this posts:
    GazaBoyTank.jpg

    16th October 2012 at 8:51 am

  27. eugend66 says:

    Driving a tank is a dangerous job ….. .

    16th October 2012 at 8:53 am

  28. Nonanonymous says:

    Zara, JFK was killed by Israel? How was it he and Bobby were threatening them?

    It couldn’t have been the mob, could it?

    Everybody knows the mob are Italian. Sorta blows a whole in your little theory. Zara, the one trick pony doesn’t even have a alibi. You can call me a christian zionist if you like, it’s your privilege to cast dispersions. Even so, I’m not buying it, or your quaint dispersions of truth. You should take Job’s wife’s advice, just curse God and die already.

    You do have an interesting perspective on global geopolitics. Too bad it just doesn’t hold any water. Tell me why you hate Israel so much. Even if all of your claims against Israel are valid, they’re rather insignificant compared to everything else going on in the world. Or is there some special significance to the 22K sq KM in the ME called the state of Israel? If so, why? The very fact that you’ve placed such significance on something relatively insignificant betrays your motive, namely, that you’re a run of the mill anti-Semite. My only question is why? Even though I don’t expect an answer, god haters are generally void of any sound judgement.

    Have a nice day, except I also don’t expect you to take my advice. Try Job’s wife’s, and get back with me.

    19th October 2012 at 9:46 am

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