The Neutralist

Why The Neutralist? The term Isolationist implies a narrow Fortress America outlook and is used as an epithet. The term Neutralist does not indicate someone hiding out from the world. No one calls the Swiss isolationists. The Wilsonian world view is old, tired and wrong. Our interventions have been less and less successful and now the failure can no longer be covered up.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

If the American governments reaction to Flight MH 17 doesn't make the case for Neutralism, you are never going to get it

There is so much news.  We have NPR, MSNBC, CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox.  They all say essentially the same thing, We have no proof, the investigation will take a while, Russia is to blame.

It is hard not to escape the thought that all main stream media is propaganda.  From hyper-left MSNBC to Neocon Fox the drumbeat is little different.

The desire to blame Russia, or the Eastern Ukrainians and therefore Russia has nothing to do with real guilt or innocence.  The Neutralist does not claim to have the story behind the story as to why we absolutely have to run the table in Eastern Europe.  It might be so the dopey VP's kid can keep his sinecure.  If he's anything like the old man, he ain't cut out for real work.  Maybe it is something to do with keeping the dollar the world currency.  Of course, if we hadn't kept devaluing it over decades that might not be a problem.

Whatever the reason we're bugging Vlad, it is not worth mutually assured incineration if we go too far.

No one is asking the question, but why can't we just leave?  What if enough people said, "ya know, both incarnations of the Bush-Obama administration have gone from failure to failure, maybe we should really try something different.  Let's leave."

Of course, at that point, the neocons and other foreign policy hot shots would say, "But, but Putin could  takeover Ukraine and maybe finlandize a lot of other territory."

Yeah, so what.  If what we've seen of the Ukies these last several months, he can have them.  The only real question is what can he do to us?

In real terms, we are doing it to ourselves, but the question is fair.  There are some things he can do and probably is.  There are allusions in the press that is he talking with the Brics about setting up a rival system for settling payments.  Who can blame him?

As to hurting us, he can take measures on the periphery of taking the part of countries that we are bugging elsewhere.  Again, why wouldn't he?

If we were not there, much of the incentive for the first goes away and just about all of the second evaporates.

He can not come after us with a carrier fleet and an invasion flotilla because he does not have one, nor will he acquire one anytime soon.

What do we get out of saying au revoir?  We see an end to a sea of problems and expenses.

That's it folks.  We don't have to be there, in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Africa anywhere.  We don't have to be there.

Now there are some out there who will argue that we have to be over there to secure petroleum supplies.  I remember the argument some local talk show nut used to use locally, "What is our oil doing under there soil?"  Don't have a ready answer, but oil is fungible and usually available for purchase.  Maybe we consult the Swiss on how a neutral gets hydrocarbons.

The point is we really don't have to be there.  The moms and dads who have lost sons and daughters since 2001 have had them stolen, because, in real terms, they did not have to be there.

So if you, my one or two readers have a neutralist ethos, when someone you know spouts off about how we have to show Putin a thing or two, ask why and don't stop.  When he proves to you that he has listened and absorbed all that the talking heads have spouted, don't try to prove him wrong, just keep asking why we should care.

And when he says, "Yeah, but he could be in Moldova in a week!"  Ask him what part of the United States Moldova is in?

Monday, June 30, 2014

Steven Erlanger saves the French from slavery

But the emotional legacies are different for different countries. For France the war, however bloody, was a necessary response to invasion. Preventing the German Army from reaching Paris in the first battle of the Marne spelled the difference between freedom and slavery. 
The words above were written by an elite journalist in the paper of record.  Mr. Erlanger has punched all the tickets, Harvard, the Times, a shared Pulitzer.  For a writer to conjure up the Gauls as all enchained by Les Boches is absurd.  True, the Germans would not have been gentle, but like after the unpleasantness of the early 1870s, they  would have left.

Oh well, Mr. Erlanger appears to be reliably neocon so not much else can be expected.

After all, when Charlie Thin put up money to help save the Grey Lady, it wasn't to get a quality product.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Ukraine, Time for America to exit World War I

Woodrow Wilson's crusade to make the world safe for democracy has gone beyond absurd.  The echo chamber has been reverberating about what we have to do in the Ukraine.  No one in the media is saying the answer is to just leave.  The implication is that if we do, The Russkies are at the Atlantic in a week.  So what?  Europe becomes their problem instead of ours.

If the Old World wants to be sans Rus, their taxpayers can pay for defense.

Anyway, in the words of Will Smith in Men in Black, "Don't start nothin', won't be nothin'."  The trouble has our fingerprints all over it.  (see here, but I suspect my few readers already have).

Justin Raimondo has an account at antiwar.com of our new  millennium stupidity.  I am linking if anyone needs a history lesson.  We've been over the territory here before.

It's time to bring back all the boys from "Over There."  Cohan could write a catchy tune, but it was dumb then, it's dumber now.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

We suspend our fundraiser in favor of the most worthy antiwar.com in spite of Justin's refusal to use the word Neutralist

The Neutralist announces the suspension of our ongoing fundraiser.  To become a Platinum Level Neutralist Sustainer requires a minimum donation of $15,000,000.  As our non-success has been impressive, we have decided to slack off in favor of an organization that is the grand torch bearer in the anti-intervention camp.

Antiwar.comhttp://antiwar.com/has been carrying on the fight since what feels like forever.  I discovered it during the buffoonery of the Clinton interventions.  It was a wonderful and welcome find.  There were people out there who thought mostly the same.  If I was crazy, I was not alone.

Maybe all of us who believe our countries foreign adventures have not been a good idea are mad.  I like to think that no matter how strident Justin Raimondo et al are, they are not hysterics.  It is the other side that is.  Fortunately, there is some proof of that.

Justin's Wednesday column is about the fundraiser.  He mentions how David Frum called people who opposed war treasonous.  He has some vindication below.

“Writing at the height of the neocons’ triumph, Frum said conservatives must "turn our backs" on the "traitors" in their midst, including not only Pat Buchanan but also Bob Novak, Tom Fleming, and Joe Sobran, as well as myself. Frum’s evidence of my "treason"? Let him speak for himself:
"The week after the fall of Kabul, Raimondo acknowledged that though the Afghan war seemed to have succeeded, disaster lurked around the corner: ‘The real quagmire awaits us. . . . When the history books are written, Operation Enduring Freedom will be hailed as a great success – provided it doesn’t endure much more than a few weeks longer.’"

In retrospect, my prediction is spot on: however, in the springtime of the neocons – Spring of 2003 – this was not so readily apparent. Not that I’m claiming to be Nostradamus or anything: at the time, it was clear to anyone with even a half-baked knowledge of Afghanistan’s history that the Americans’ attempt to remake the country would ultimately fail.”

Yup, Justin was right twice.  First in the prediction and second, he did not have to be Nostradamus.  Yet David Frum is still taken seriously.  He gets to talk on government radio and is published in say, The Daily Beast.  Okay, those are not really serious outlets, but you get what I mean.

Justin was and is mostly right, but he has to solicit supporters.  That is right and just as opposed to Frum types who are really just given presents.


So feel free to donate to antiwar.com, and when you send in your donation, tell Justin and Eric, they should call themselves Neutralists and not Isolationists.

I do have a problem with his praise of Sontag's anti-war activities.  Anyone who calls the group that brought the world indoor plumbing a cancer can't be all good.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Another Neutralist Manifesto!

I've seen John V. Walsh's writings on occasion, but never got overly excited.  It's ho hum time not because he writes terribly, just the opposite.  It is that the Neutralist is almost always in agreement.  In his latest article, he has sent cold shivers of pleasure up our spine for two reasons, for two reasons.

First, he has written a Neutralist Manifesto to rival the one on this site.

If the United States insists on its status as the dominant and unchallengeable military power, then we are on the road to conflict, certainly a new Cold War the beginning of which the “pivot” represents, and quite possibly we are on the road to WWIII. We in the United States are the ones who can control this and perhaps save the world from the very worst suffering and deadly conflict. The answer is to abandon Empire, dismantle our overseas bases, end our occupation of foreign nations, including South Korea, Japan and Germany, adopt a defensive strategy to protect our land and come home. Trade and talk, yes. Military intervention, no. We have a potential partner for peace in China. Let us give it a try. Establish trust and verify it. In short, Come Home America. A paradise awaits us here. Let us leave others in peace to construct their own.

Lovely stuff that.

Our second reason is he is a founding member of an organization called Come Home America that embodies what we believe.  Now our investigation of the website has not been exhaustive so maybe we should be a little bit reticent to extend fulsome praise.  It would not do to find out that they are for coming home because the Grand Goggflek of the Planet Nogemal has communicated with them.  If that turns out to be true, we withdraw approval, at least until Goggflek signals us directly.

We are not overly worried and suggest a visit to http://comehomeamerica.wordpress.com/

It is a site that has attained neutralismo even if they don't know it.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Thank you for your service, while your here.

Retired Admiral Mike Mullen has noted that the servimen killed in action are quickly forgotten by his countrymen and women.  I cannot say I disagree with him, but we generally tend to forget all our dead.  I will be going to a memorial service for a relative gone several years now.  He was close and is in my memory often.  Others, it's harder, that's why we have memorial services, not to mention Memorial day.  Like most American holidays, Memorial Day is now just another have fun day.

I applaud the Admiral, to a point.  Granted, fellow feeling for those who follow your trade is natural, but the lads and some lasses who lose their lives in war are a bit different from cousin Sid who died of an infected paper cut suffered in his cubicle as he was struggling to get out the monthly cafeteria usage report.

Our forces overseas are either the first line of defense in a vital world historic conflict, or their lives are being wantonly put at risk.  A short perusal of the Neutralist should leave no one to wonder long where we stand.

According to the Admiral,

"When you get to these wars, I worry that America has paid us very well, the compensation's good, [so the culture says] 'please go off and fight our dirty little wars and let us get on with our lives,'" he said. "We need to figure a way to get America to buy into those, into them."
Interesting words.  Yeah, the people like to be vaguely reminded someone is out there, so you have fine organizations like Fisher House and, after some recent media exposure, lesser outfits like Wounded Warrior.  So, does he have any ideas?  If he wants to drag the citizenry through the hospitals, maybe clean a bedpan or two, support for the war will last for nanoseconds.  It is only the detachment from reality keeps it from being unpalatable.
Another paragraph and quote struck us as a bit weird,
He proposed some sort of universal national service program (although not a draft), perhaps two years of service for all people between the age of 18 and 24, to bridge the gap between the military and the civilian communities.
"The military becoming more and more isolated from the American people is a disaster for America," Mullen said.
Now how is putting the kids in some non-draft situation going to bridge the gap?  
Actually, The Neutralist may be the only one in the country who finds such proposals bizarre.  It seems mandatory community service requirements in high schools and colleges can only make the students cynical.  Even the slow student gets that forcing someone to do good does not make them good.
He singles out The Northeast for special treatment.
The problem is worse in the Northeast than other regions. "The people in the Northeast don't know us anymore, for example," Mullen said, given that the Base Realignment and Closure process has led to the closure of so many military installations in the region.
Now as someone who has lived here all my life, except for an inglorious period as a soldier, to a degree I believe him correct.  The political class is not enamored of  the military and does not enlist.  The base closures have been many and without people with jobs at the bases, there is less paycheck loyalty.
For all that there is a pervasive support the troops sentiment.  Hardly a professional sports event happens without remembering the troops.  Of course, there has been some substitution of Marathon Bombing memorialization  the closer one gets to Boston.  ROTC may not be big at Harvard or Yale, but many of the private and state colleges offer it.
The national service idea is not without supporters regionally.  In the upper reaches of academia and commerce, they see their kids teaching the benighted and closing some gap, while the lower orders have the grunt jobs.  Another reason to oppose it.
We have addressed this in other posts, but what kind of military does the Neutralist envision?  Ideally, we would wish everyone would rush to the colors and serve long term in the reserves.  I expect to be signed as a pitcher by the Red Sox before that happens.
Next idea?  The Neutralist wants a miltary that can defend the country, but not be tempted to foreign adventures.  Obviously, that is not a large standing army.
We are not optimists, but there is a system that is an effective fighting force and does not go abroad to save the world or markets.  That would be Switzerland.
Now this can work only if everyone goes.  As soon as war comes, the senator and rep, not to mention their staff head as well as the college president and ceo move out to their units.
The training of the new soldiers would mean everyone at age of induction goes to learn together the joys of low crawling.  The professors kid mixes with the lower orders.  He may find a few Billy Bobs from south of the Mason-Dixon who can outsmart him*.  Also, he can get to meet the inner city youth he has shed tears of blood over while personally avoiding.  Sexual orientation, who cares?  In basic, it should be all training all the time such that if someone still has energy to get into another bunk, they've probably earned it.
The grand establishment that is the military will no longer exist.  We won't need Pxs, Golf courses, enlisted clubs and all the paraphernalia that bribes people into long service.
It won't be fun, and like the Swiss, as everyone goes, the people will not tolerate frivoulous deployments to save the world or bring democracy or something.
I know this has no chance of happening.

*Be assured, there is no one of this class who thinks anyone outside it his or her equal.








Friday, January 24, 2014

Tomgram, salvation is destruction

The headline to the Tomgram article says it all,  We Have to Destroy Our Constitution to Save It.  It's one of those great lies such as Bush the younger's abandoning free market principles to save it.  It has no basis in truth, but is accepted by a segment of the population.

No one to the Neutralist's knowledge actually said that about the constitution other than Tom, but it is the general tone of partisans of the security state. 

Bush did make his remark.  Unlike a lot of people who were born with a hatred for him, his family and party, The Neutralist doesn't think he was stupid.  Neither do we believe him a genius.  He possessed the cunning of the political class.  There is a very limited free market in this country.  In real terms, Bush did nothing to save it, nor did he have any intention of doing so.  He was bailing out the banker class.  His remark of saving it was him being cute as was, oh like say, Bill Clinton when he announced the end of the big government era.

The security state partisans do claim to be preserving our freedoms, but they talk more on the order of keeping us safe.  They say we have not heard about the events they prevented.  We sure know about the guys they set up for a fall.  If they're so effective, then there should have been no Boston Marathon bombing.  After all, they were tipped off by the Russkies.

So if the record of catching the bad guys is, as they say in Scotland, not proven, what is the rationale for scooping up all our phone records?

In truth, we do not have an answer, only guesses.  The people who are doing this are bureaucrats even if they wear general's stars.  We would not want to say they are born rotters and that is what they do.  They may have signed on believing in the goodness of the mision.  No matter the state of their souls, they believe in the mission.  If they don't, at least they serve it.  Governments and bureaucracies do not always trust the citzenry.  It is not far from that to a for your own good attitude.

It is even shorter to a we are trashing the Bill of Rights to save it.  Are they mad.  Sure, but the real crazies don't go to asylums.  If you can write a plausible paper, appear cogent on C span, you should have no worries about keeping a post no matter how many files you want Leviathan to scoop up.

The Tomgram applauds the activity of the people who exposed COINTELPRO and the paper that exposed the operation.  What has changed?  More to the point, who has changed?  There is a tiny burst of surprise that the Clintons have an enemies list.  Not a big topic in the media.  When Nixon had them it was proof of complete evil, as was just about anything he did.  Equally hated and reviled was J. Edgar Hoover and his FBI. 

To go after them was truth to power.  Was it really?  After all, the media applauded the actions of the operatives.  We don't know, but no matter, the security state at that time was a fraction of what it is now, but it was not good.

Now, the great and good are not rising up in opposition as they did even under Bush.  Not too many have much to say against this administration.  Why?  Is it a cult of personality for someone who really does not have much of a personality?

Tom and Glenn have to be commended.  It has to be a bit lonely, but that is heroism.