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Henry Fucking Kissinger
     Henry Kissinger in his younger years.
     DK Official Image, MB
I don't very often recommend the writings of former Republican Secretary of State and national security adviser Henry Kissinger, however, when I do you can be sure it is to stimulate discussions of our own and not to praise his foreign policy perspective. His short essay in the Wall Street Journal is worth a quick read if you are in a mood to ponder some big picture questions about the directions of our foreign policy and global political system. In Henry Kissinger on the Assembly of a New World Order: The concept that has underpinned the modern geopolitical era is in crisis, Kissinger raises more interesting questions than he provides answers for.

Starting with an easy to predict litany of global crises such as the increasing power of Islamic fundamentalist armies declaring a caliphate in Syria and Iraq, and the increasingly dire failure of the nascent "democracy" in Afghanistan Kissinger adds in our ambivalent relationships with both Russia and China as evidence the long era of post-World War II "utopian" U.S. led New World Order is coming unglued.

Our attempts to spread democracy, free markets, and provide solid U.S. lead international leadership seems to have run off course in Kissinger's view.

The search for world order has long been defined almost exclusively by the concepts of Western societies. In the decades following World War II, the U.S.—strengthened in its economy and national confidence—began to take up the torch of international leadership and added a new dimension. A nation founded explicitly on an idea of free and representative governance, the U.S. identified its own rise with the spread of liberty and democracy and credited these forces with an ability to achieve just and lasting peace. The traditional European approach to order had viewed peoples and states as inherently competitive; to constrain the effects of their clashing ambitions, it relied on a balance of power and a concert of enlightened statesmen. The prevalent American view considered people inherently reasonable and inclined toward peaceful compromise and common sense; the spread of democracy was therefore the overarching goal for international order. Free markets would uplift individuals, enrich societies and substitute economic interdependence for traditional international rivalries.

Kissinger sees European states falling short by trying to transcend the "state and craft a foreign policy based primarily on the principles of soft power. But it is doubtful that claims to legitimacy separated from a concept of strategy can sustain a world order."

While Asia falls short by relying too much on "balance-of-power principles" rather than fundamental principles and and "agreed upon concept of legitimacy."

When Kissinger says an  "agreed upon concept of legitimacy," what he really seems to be idealizing is the era of U.S. Dominance built around our spreading democracy and free market capitalism, which is now in peril.


The clash between the international economy and the political institutions that ostensibly govern it also weakens the sense of common purpose necessary for world order. The economic system has become global, while the political structure of the world remains based on the nation-state. Economic globalization, in its essence, ignores national frontiers. Foreign policy affirms them, even as it seeks to reconcile conflicting national aims or ideals of world order.

The international order thus faces a paradox: Its prosperity is dependent on the success of globalization, but the process produces a political reaction that often works counter to its aspirations.

Kissinger suggests one improvement would might be to create a "mechanism for the great powers to consult and possibly cooperate on the most consequential issues," but apparently not the UN Security Council.

Oddly, Kissinger doesn't see the risk of failure of a dominate world order as major wars between the major powers but a world breaking up into "spheres of influence" vying for power and creating frictions at their edges. Perhaps Kissinger is imaging the three major powers of 1984 with slightly different borders with a fourth long snaky region of Muslim states. The "Americas," the European States extending to Siberian and with Africa as its resource supplying hinterland, and South East Asia dominated by China (Oceania)?

Kissinger is vague when it comes to recommendations, but since I find his list of questions a world philosophy and foreign policy must answer to be succuessful, to be the most interesting part of his essay, I'm happy to leave Kissinger behind to see if his apparently wistful lament for the "good old days" of post-WWII U.S. domination when U.S. military, economic, and political power left us greater control over world events can be used as a springboard to stimulate our own discussions of what we as Democrats can do to sharpen our own brand of global foreign policy.

In terms of timing, this ought to be one our electioneering fortes as President Obama has patiently and steadily picked up the broken pieces, and shards of the Bush-Cheney administration.    

To play a responsible role in the evolution of a 21st-century world order, the U.S. must be prepared to answer a number of questions for itself: What do we seek to prevent, no matter how it happens, and if necessary alone? What do we seek to achieve, even if not supported by any multilateral effort? What do we seek to achieve, or prevent, only if supported by an alliance? What should we not engage in, even if urged on by a multilateral group or an alliance? What is the nature of the values that we seek to advance? And how much does the application of these values depend on circumstance?

We Democrats need to invest more time in articulating a more compelling vision for promoting world order with a narrative to back it up.

My own feelings is a core organizing foundation should be the international rule of law, such as the Geneva Conventions, support for multilateral solutions worked out in the framework of the U.N., and putting greater backing into strengthening institutions enforcing the international rule of law, such as the International Criminal Court in the Hague.

Also, does it not appear yet to be time for the United States to get over the notion that we must dominate and control all the major aspects of global affairs? After WWII we were the only major super power with viable economy, so the fact that we were only 5% of the world's population, gave us no pause when we decided we should be in control. Our share of global GDP has continuously been falling back towards more proportionate levels as Europe and Asia have rebuilt their economic systems. So is it surprising that they may wish a more equal say in our the world operates?

I invite others to use the comments as a jumping off point for discussions aimed had bolstering our Democratic foreign policy that needs improvements and which, in my opinion, is facing the prospect of being hijacked whole hog by neoconservative philosophies without sufficient discussion and push back.

Cheers.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (43+ / 0-)

    Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

    by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 05:00:36 PM PDT

  •  gee, henry, what an insight. (15+ / 0-)

    "how can we accomplish the one-world fascism fantasies of my little war-criminal brain, when fascism typically requires an abusive exploitation of nationalism?"

    To put the torture behind us is, inevitably, to put it in front of us.

    by UntimelyRippd on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 05:13:16 PM PDT

  •  Kissinger is a war criminal (10+ / 0-)

    Frankly, he makes me ashamed to be Jewish. It's also absurd that he got the Nobel Peace Prize. He's the last person to deserve it. Nothing he says is "discussion worthy" UNLESS he apologizes for his war crimes. Go ahead and HR me if you wish. But this is how I feel, and I should be allowed to express that.

    Their cause must be our cause too. Because it's not just Negroes, but really it's all of us, who must overcome the crippling legacy of bigotry and injustice. And we shall overcome. -- Lyndon B. Johnson

    by AllTheWayWithLBJ85 on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 05:18:12 PM PDT

    •  Your expression is fine with me. I also think he (18+ / 0-)

      is a war criminal, but with regard to using an essay as a springboard for discussion, I would not in the spirit of the closing line in Marilyn Monroe's movie "Diamonds Are a Girls Best Friend, "nobody's perfect!"

      No one should HR anyone for expressing their honest heartfelt opinions, IMO.

      Speaking of war crimes did you ever read the book "Fog of War" in which former Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara finally concluded after a lifetime of self-reflection that the fire bombing of Dresden, after we had already broken the back of the German army was a war crime. McNamara was one who helped plan it, along with the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

      He felt even Hiroshoma was a war crime as it had no military value, and the goal of intimidating the stubborn Japanese army holdouts could have been achieved in many other ways.

      Like maybe vaporizing Mt Fuji.  This last line is not a McNamara quote, just a little "juice" to spice up an evening discussion.

      Welcome AllThWay.  Please don't hold back on your opinions of Kissinger because you think I'll be shocked.

      I pretty much believe all Americans bear some degree of culpability for a long litany of war crimes going back to the genocide of the indigenous Native American Indian populations all the way up through the launching of the Iraq war and destruction of Falujah.

      Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

      by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 05:34:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Actually the MM movie was Some Like it Hot n/t (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gravlax, HoundDog, Eric Nelson, JG in MD
        •  Oh, darn. I hate it when this happens. It's still (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gravlax, BvueDem, JG in MD

          a great line. One of the few things I remember from this move about 35 or 40 year ago.

          Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

          by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 06:06:42 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Loved the movie "Fog of War"! (5+ / 0-)

        I also saw The Unknown Known about Donald Rumsfeld. Rummy had some great quotes, but I don't like him much for obvious reasons. I do commend him for helping injured people at the Pentagon on 9/11.

        Their cause must be our cause too. Because it's not just Negroes, but really it's all of us, who must overcome the crippling legacy of bigotry and injustice. And we shall overcome. -- Lyndon B. Johnson

        by AllTheWayWithLBJ85 on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 06:04:07 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Falouja (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        HoundDog

        HELL, FALOUJA BURNING

        The US use of Whiskey Pete, another war crime to follow in the steps of Henry Kissenger.
        Should I bring up Torture, Depleted Uranium munitions, wedding parties & drones with no civilian deaths but yes, collateral damage.
        When the War Crimes table is set, there shall be many vying for the head of the table.
        I therefore suggest a round table large enough to accommodate the numerous war criminals from this country alone.
        Hypocrites all, but may they burn in Hell for eternity at least in the eyes of history.

        I`m already against the next war.

        by Knucklehead on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 08:30:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  no kinetic retrocausality by blood. (5+ / 0-)

        "I pretty much believe all Americans bear some degree of culpability for a long litany of war crimes going back to the genocide of the indigenous Native American Indian populations...."

        That kind of thinking, that people "bear culpability" for the sins of their forefathers, is empirically and logically absurd, and the direct result of certain aspects of Christianity that in turn derive from the generalized folk-religious beliefs of Middle Eastern tribals in the region where Christianity started.

        It's one thing to characterize the genocide of the First Nations peoples and the enslavement of African peoples as "Original Sin" at the founding of our country.  

        And it's one thing to claim that we, to this day, bear the responsibility for rectifying the wrongs committed by others in the past.  If you can't catch the person who let their dog shit in the street, you still have to clean up the shit or you'll have a public health hazard.

        But it's a far different thing to claim that we who were born after those things, are in some way "culpable" as if by some kind of kinetic retrocausality embedded in our blood.

        "Oh, oh, it was my fault! that there's dog shit in the streets!  Oh wail, weep, and self-hate!"  Bullshit.  Get a broom and a shovel and clean it up, and take steps to prevent a recurrence, and that takes care of that.  Emotional dramaticism does not make for clean streets or clean politics or a clean economy or social justice or any other damn thing beyond the level of "reality TV."

        That kind of self-loathing by so many American progressives is a direct cause of LOSING: elections, economics, the whole nine yards.  Why are there so few progressive billionaires?  Why is it that we can't overthrow the righties in Congress and elect a socialist Democrat as our next president?  In part the answer is the self-loathing of American-ness by American progressives.  

        We have got to get over that, or we may as well drink ourselves into a collective coma and then die of self-pity.

        And, given the climate crisis, the outcome of the self-loathing loser mentality may very well be the extinction of the human species.

        If you're looking for a sin to be guilty of, the extinction of the species is top of the list.  And all you have to do, to be guilty of it, is "nothing."
         

        GOTV as if your life depends on it, because somebody's life does.

        by G2geek on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 08:37:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I hear you G2geek, perhaps I would change the (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Old Woman, sfinx

          word "culpability" to responsibility expressing a concept of social responsibility for collective agency.  Metaphorically "social karma" if you will.

          Do you not agree that the Vatican and whole Catholic Church today bears collective "karma" and responsibility to some degree for the actions of the Vatican with regard to the victims of pedophile preist?

          The legal system recognizes just responsibility in the form of financial obligation for law suits brought be victims.

          The Vatican has achieved a "systemic agency" that operates on behalf of 1.5 billion people who have endowed it with powers to speak and act on their behalf, and they benefit from and continue to empower it to act on their behalf in the forms of owning property, espousing a religions, and running and operating a unique and power "agency" of the Catholic Church and Vatican which have a history, and responsibility for its past.

          Didn't the Nuremberg find some culpability for the German people for WW2, War reparations are common as in the poorly thought out Treaty of Versaille (sp?).  The German government still pays stipends to the victims of the Holocaust, as I know one who is 82 and has received a monthly check here whole life.

          Whether we like it our not, as citizens of a country we bear certain histories, reputation, and collective ownership for the actions or our forebears that we benefit from.

          Consider fossil fuel emissions and global warming. Many in the rest of the world believe that the United States bears a higher degree of responsibility for the CO2 that is now in the atmosphere and will be for over 100 years after we stop emitting.

          We benefited from, and still benefit from the economic activity derived from the burning of that coal, so it is appropriate that we accept responsibility for a greater share of an burdens causes by it.

          The Vatican finally apologized for the "its" actions in the 1500 and 1600 when it opposed the Copernican system of astronomy to the point of arresting Galileo and other astronomers who committed the "heresy" of claiming the sun was the center of our solar system.

          The debate between "science" and the Vatican transcends individuals involved over the last 400 years, and still has many consequences that reverberate throughout out social system.

          If the metaphor of "collective karma" is to unscientific I cold live with "collective consequence management" in an extended Newtonian metaphor that updates right on up through quantum mechanics based metaphor.

          When a que ball is sticken by the player the consequent force and momentum do not just impact the target ball but spreads out via vector forces throughout a system of balls that spread the momentum of the que ball.

          So go our actions in a social system.

          When we are part of groups that act in our collective agency, and have identity that transcend us as individuals, subsequent members who are part of that group and who identify with it later, inherent reputations, roles, responsibilities, opportunities etc both positive and negative of that groups history.

          United States citizens today are bound by the treaties our government signed on "our" behalf before we were even born.

          When our government in "collective agency" uses our FBI, directed by our elected executive branch to commit acts, like those at wounded knee, how can we way "we"had nothing to do with it? We are all just innocent bystanders? Or as Schultz would say, "I know nuthink!"  We weren't even following orders, we were just watching on T.V.  But we benefit from all the lands that used to belong to another race of people, another ethnic group, that are grandmothers and fathers pushed off their land with violence?  

          No we cannot renounce collective involvement of our nations history and actions done on "our" behalf.

          The ego you use to determine your "identifications" may be of the opinion that "you" are just a being inside your own body, and nothing else, but from the point of view of your actual involvement with the rest of the system you are attached to without knowing it your "identity" and the system you are inextricably tied do extends beyond yourself.

          Another metaphor, the cells of your kidneys, might if they could vote, declare they had nothing to do with the rest of your body, and should not be put in jail for crimes planned and committed by your brain, but can not be excused as your organs are all attached and inseparable.

          To a certain extent we are part of national and global systems. If the water we drink is coming from an aquafer (sp?) that is being depleted faster than it is being refreshed we will suffer the consequences when it runs out.

          Our children who had nothing to do with it, but benefit from and continue the overly consumptive lifestyles we taught them will inherit benefits, consequences, and "responsibilities" for our actions they had no choice in the execution of.

          Just as our children and all future U.S. citizens who immigrate from other countries will inherit our national debt they had nothing to do with creating, but will be expected to pay off on our behalf.

          But I'm not saying we should go to "jail" for the atrocities our forefathers committee against the Native Americans. Just that is part of "our" historic legacy, and in terms of discussions about ethics, foreign policy, the definitions of war crimes, and our future foreign policy, and policy analysis it can be relevant to "our" discussions to bring up "our collective" history.

          And own it.

          If the rest of the ecosystem at "agency" and legal representation and wanted to "sue us" in the International Ecological Courts for humankind's "crimes against ecology" I would grant a certain amount of legitimacy to those claims.

          Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

          by HoundDog on Sun Aug 31, 2014 at 03:49:24 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  That was the last line of (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JG in MD, HoundDog, sfinx

        Some Like It Hot, and Marilyn didn't say it. She was in love with the saxophone player.

        Jack Lemmon as Jerry (Gerald)/"Daphne" in drag: [Takes off wig] You can't marry me. I'm a guy!

        Joe E. Brown as Osgood Fielding III: Well, nobody's perfect.

        How times have changed.

        Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

        by Mokurai on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 11:16:02 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Kissinger was small beans compared to... (7+ / 0-)

      ....today's oligarchy.

      In Kissinger's worldview, the US would dominate, the rest of the world would prosper, and the global majority would be middle class.

      In the view of today's oligarchy, they would dominate, and the rest of the world would be their slavey class or just die off.  They don't even make a scant pretense about a middle class today.  

      In Kissinger's day, Africa and a swath of Asia and the Middle East were "white man's burden" to convert to Westernized cultures.

      In the view of today's oligarchy, there isn't even a scant pretense of that either: those regions are nothing more than mines for resources and sinks for wastes, their people be damned, unless they get an epidemic or military threat that threatens to spread outside their borders (Ebola, ISIL).

      Consider the difference in the response of government, to the 1930s depression, compare to the 2008 depression (or "deeprecession" which is merely "depression" with a few extra letters added to make it seem less-bad).

      GOTV as if your life depends on it, because somebody's life does.

      by G2geek on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 08:21:44 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The main problem with Henry K is (16+ / 0-)

    his 'solutions' in the past were only good on paper, nobody really kept them. That approach in part lead to the neocons 'school yard bully' approach, which is fuelling the current 'blowback'. HK tried to deal  (what he thought) was realistically with the world, but ideology left him about half blind. (Sadly, he still is.)

    May you live in interesting times--Chinese curse

    by oldcrow on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 05:22:00 PM PDT

    •  Agreed, you summed it up well oldcrow. This (11+ / 0-)

      "school yard bully" approach has got to end. And I fear the neocons and military industrial complex is amping up alarm about the Islamic State to draw us in to an interminable global war again Islam.

      And the harder and more violently we strike out at the jihadists the more of them we create.

      What is our national security interest in exacerbating tensions with Islamic nations?

      If we largely withdrew from the region what would they have against us? Most of their fighting seems to be a 1,000 year old civil war between two major strands of Islam. If we didn't insist inserting ourselves into it, they might forget about us.

      Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

      by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 05:38:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  HD, I agree, the first rule in fighting terrori... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gravlax, HoundDog, JG in MD

        HD, I agree, the first rule in fighting terrorism is to refrain at all costs from creating new terrorists or giving terrorists more ammunition for their recruitment of new terrorists.

        •  We should have a Hippocratic Oath for soldiers, (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          JG in MD

          and military incursions. "First, do not arm," or at least "Don't make it worse!"  

          We could have saved ourselves from about the last five wars on that advice alone and totally balanced the budget to boot.

          Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

          by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 07:10:52 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Kissinger's problem is that he mentored a whole... (16+ / 0-)

      cadre of war criminals from Negroponte to Cheney, Rumsfeld and Elliot Abrams. And now their protégés like Clapper, Brennen, (and until he recently retired) Keith Alexander, are running our government now.

      "If one would give me six lines written by the hand of the most honest man, I would find something in them to have him hanged." - 17th-century French clergyman and statesman Cardinal Richelieu.

      by markthshark on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 06:29:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  i've led a pretty nice life ignoring henry (13+ / 0-)

    kissinger...no need to change course now

    •  But, but ... this could be your last chance memo. (5+ / 0-)

      He's getting really old.

      I'm glad you life was "pretty nice." Mine mostly sucked, but I'm not done yet.

      Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

      by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 05:40:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  ok, i'm a grammar teacher, not a grammar nazi, (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        AaronInSanDiego

        but you must not use the simple past tense to refer to this life- and especially not mine!

        simple past is for something that has already finished! our lives are being lived, thank whomever!

        present perfect, baby!

  •  Oh, for an alternative to neoliberalism (5+ / 0-)

    It would be great to not have to vote for a Green Party candidate, but I'm thinking I'll probably have to and in California, it will only be a protest vote. It seems that it would be asking too much for the Democrats to provide something a bit more clearly beyond the "Coke or Pepsi?" choice when it comes to economics and foreign policy. Will Rand Paul be the anti-war and anti-security state candidate? Of course he's a twit and entirely part of the problem, i.e. completely pro-corporate, but it looks like the Dems may cede the inconvenient civil liberties thing in favor of their friends in the Pentagon and on Wall Street.

  •  In the spirit of your desire for conversation, (13+ / 0-)

    I think that Kissinger is really mourning the death of his beloved Realpolitik approach to world affairs.

    What do we seek to prevent, no matter how it happens, and if necessary alone?
    I think that what we should be trying to prevent is violence (state sponsored, state condoned and otherwise) in the world. Note: Step one would be handing over our role of number one armament dealer to the world.

    I think that what the US will try to prevent is the loss of the power of the banks. Note: I don't know how to address this one

    What do we seek to achieve, even if not supported by any multilateral effort?
    This is above my pay grade.
    What is the nature of the values that we seek to advance? And how much does the application of these values depend on circumstance?
    I'm with HoundDog (I think) that the UN is the right idea here. Advancing the freedoms of choice and from fear of violence should be the only thing we seek to advance. Oh, and maybe not destroying the planet while we're at it.

    As far as circumstance dependent goes, I think that more effort to achieve the "American ideal" at home will create better circumstances for helping achieve these goals elsewhere.

    Or, we could just set our phasers on stun and bow down to Captain Picard?

    "when the going gets weird, the weird turn pro"

    by gravlax on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 05:27:14 PM PDT

    •  Thanks for these great comments gravlax, (8+ / 0-)

      Especially the part about you being with Hounddog!  Go team!

      lol

      I agree with all of your insights.

      Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

      by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 05:44:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Agree and especially for this (6+ / 0-)
      Oh, and maybe not destroying the planet while we're at it.
    •  If HK thinks that the major risk going forward (0+ / 0-)

      is not

      major wars between the major powers but a world breaking up into "spheres of influence" vying for power and creating frictions at their edges
      ...
      he has missed what I think will be the defining reality globally for the forseeable future - conflict, oppression, mass migration, and general breakdown of our current international system as a result of pressures caused by (i) AGW, and (ii) various resource peaks.

      It will start (indeed, it already has) with small and incremental changes in peoples' freedom, their tolerance for strangers, and their ability to live happy and productive lives.  Things are likely to get worse unpredictably and nonlinearly.

  •  Insightful. (13+ / 0-)
    The international order thus faces a paradox: Its prosperity is dependent on the success of globalization, but the process produces a political reaction that often works counter to its aspirations.
    Kissinger loves the concept of paradox for its simplicity, its elegance, but the real problem is that the post-WWII order is crumbling. What we're seeing play out in Ukraine could just as well have been set in 1930, or 1890. The same applies to Chinese gunboat diplomacy in the South China Sea.

    And those are just the state actors. When you have frightening 'new' viruses like HIV or Ebola break out of containment, or enormous (and under-reported, at least in U.S. media) waves of intercontinental migrants, or massive droughts in our Midwest help reduce the world's grain supply to subsistence levels – in one model I've seen at least – the basic building block of modern society, the nation-state, doesn't have the tools to address these problems.

    Throw in climate change as the 800 lb gorilla, and what you're looking at is order sliding into chaos.

    The righties whinge to high heaven that Obama embraces national decline, when what's really happening is the entire international system beginning to buckle under pressure.

    •  Well said MBNYC - we Democrats have a lot of (5+ / 0-)

      work to do to advance our perspectives on all of these issues.

      A real gut-buster is going to be promoting actions through the U.N. when the right hates even national level government.

      But, how else are we going to address global issues such as global warming, disease, starvation, war, poverty, and wide spread human rights abuses and totalitarian oppression?

      Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

      by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 05:48:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  President had laid out a clear pivot to Southeast. (4+ / 0-)

    ...Asia, until he was overtaken by events.

    That said, Kissinger asks, "What do we seek to prevent, no matter how it happens, and if necessary alone?"

    We should seek to prevent China from asserting extraterritorial claims in Southeast Asia, and we should be prepared to act alone, if necessary

    Middle East?  It ships more oil to China than to the USA.  Let Saudi Arabia and China ensure its stability.

    Europe?  The US already accounts for 75% of NATO's budget.  If Germany feels threatened by Russia, have it send its 50K troops to Ukraine.

    Learn about Centrist Economics, learn about Robert Rubin's Hamilton Project. www.hamiltonproject.org

    by PatriciaVa on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 05:43:19 PM PDT

  •  I have an idea (5+ / 0-)

    Let's change labor day to 1 May like the rest of the world.

  •  ENERGY - Oil (25+ / 0-)

    When Kissinger speaks of global trade and "economic interdependence" he is really talking about OIL.  

    We NEED Oil.

    We don't have enough Oil.

    So we need international trade to get enough Oil.

    So we need free and unfettered trade routes over the high seas to ship the oil, and an international banking system to support that trade.

    So we need a military that can ensure open trade routes over which to ship us our Oil.

    And we also need oil-rich countries willing to send us our Oil, so we need an interventionist foreign policy.  We don't need other countries to be democracies, we need them willing to send us their Oil (Saudi Arabia).

    "Drill baby drill" won't solve the problem.  We will never be able to sustain our current oil habit through domestic drilling and everyone knows it, hence the continued need for a bloated military.

    It's amazing how quickly ALL of that falls apart once we no longer NEED Oil.

    Renewable energy is most of the answer.  With it, we could then actually treat the rest of the world the way it deserves to be treated.

    You matter to them IF YOU VOTE!

    by nuketeacher on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 05:52:35 PM PDT

    •  ^^^ THIS ^^^ (10+ / 0-)

      I think that there IS one word for our current foreign policy: and that is as you say OIL.

      The other thing that often gets lost in foreign policy thought is that a lot/all of traditional international state policy is based on who can outfight whom. That means planes, tanks, ships, drones ...

      All of them require oil.

      "when the going gets weird, the weird turn pro"

      by gravlax on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 05:56:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yet if we had invested the $1 trillion we spend in (17+ / 0-)

        the latest wars we probably could have achieved energy independence by now.

        Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

        by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 06:13:30 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thanks to Fracking, we're much closer... (0+ / 0-)

          ...to energy independence than many acknowledge.

          And we're doing so emitting less incremental CO2 than even Germany, since 2007.

          Just saying.

          Learn about Centrist Economics, learn about Robert Rubin's Hamilton Project. www.hamiltonproject.org

          by PatriciaVa on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 07:33:40 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  But it isn't sustainable (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ypochris, Calamity Jean

            We will NEED oil imports forever unless we change.  Eventually the rest of the world will run out too, and then what will we do?

            Far better to simply transition NOW!!

            You matter to them IF YOU VOTE!

            by nuketeacher on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 08:00:30 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  We Will Never Achieve Energy Independence... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            nuketeacher, Calamity Jean

            ....until our economy is so far degraded that we just don't need much. The shales physically can't produce enough. That the US has shouldered its way amongst Saudi Arabia and Russia in terms of liquids production (and don't confuse fracked oil with crude--they're not the same) has been the difference between our even half-assed economic recovery and, say, the condition Europe's still in, but "energy independence" is another of those sales pitches meant to deceive. Oil is the most global commodity there is. Producers and politicians are talking openly now about relaxing the US' ban on selling crude oil internationally--a strategy which runs directly counter to that pleasant "energy independence" shibboleth.

    •  Bingo! (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gravlax, Portlaw, nuketeacher

      Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

      by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 06:12:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I submitted this to Top Comments (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Portlaw, gravlax, nuketeacher, HoundDog

      tonight.

      Great comment. Join us at the link in my sig at 10EDT.

      I must end each day with a dose of Top Comments. A TC diary is a must for developing the calmness I need to get the required eight hours of sleep. - cohenzee

      by cohenzee on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 06:19:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yes, OIL (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      nuketeacher, HoundDog

      However there was a conversation in a diary recently about our military buildup in Africa.

      Yep, gotta get their OIL before China does.

      Then it will be wars for water.

      If we really believe in democracy, the UN Security Counsel should be ended and all countries have a vote.

      "People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed; never throw out anyone. " Audrey Hepburn "A Beautiful Woman"

      by Ginny in CO on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 08:12:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Some animals are more equal than others... (4+ / 0-)
      •  China's Already Got A Lot of Deals Done (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        HoundDog, Calamity Jean, Ginny in CO

        It's a little late to be trying to deny them access to places like Africa and Central/South America. And there are lots of reasons why China's gotten very aggressive with its maritime claims, and has developed some pretty damn capable coastal defenses. One of their goals isn't necessarily to interdict our access to oil--the eastern Pacific and the Atlantic will remain out of their reach for quite a long time, no matter how hard they try--but to prevent our interdicting theirs. To say nothing of their access to oil and gas within Asia, which we can do pretty much nothing about.

        •  And, however much we may see China's' actions as (0+ / 0-)

          competitive, to the extent they are occurring within the free market system we advocated we must fight back in the marketplace with legal competition not illegal military interventions, or we make a hypocrisy of our own accomplishments.

          Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

          by HoundDog on Sun Aug 31, 2014 at 08:48:04 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Oh, Of Course China's Actions Are Free-Market. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Ginny in CO

            I never suggested otherwise--with the exception of the maritime claims, which are outside existing treaties, and are contested by other states around the globe, particularly China's neighbors. But China has the absolute right to conclude business deals--like the big gas contract recently finalized with Russia--as it pleases. And they certainly are, including in a lot of markets we Americans have traditionally assumed to be our own.

        •  The prospect is really (0+ / 0-)

          ridiculous and the kossack's comment was based on the extent of the build up and speculation (no sourcing). I am just so cynical about our history in regard to protecting our corps and oil supplies, nothing seems too absurd to be planned and prepared for by the gov people who answer to the MIC.

          Climate change issues are a wild card as far as the future. Humanitarian issues will surface more frequently and severely with time.

          All reasons to want enough of a revolution for a real visionary to take the WH in '16.

          "People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed; never throw out anyone. " Audrey Hepburn "A Beautiful Woman"

          by Ginny in CO on Sun Aug 31, 2014 at 03:17:25 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Not oil (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      HoundDog, JG in MD

      Yes, we need oil, but it's not the influence you think it is.  Oil rich countries are happy to sell us oil.  What else are they going to do with it?  We don't need to convince them to sell us oil any more than we need to convince Mexico to sell us tequila.  And no one is trying to block oil trade routes.  If we didn't have a blue water navy oil tankers would still make it to our shores.  Renewable energy's definitely the future, but don't expect it to radically change our foreign policy.

      Cynicism is what passes for insight among the mediocre.

      by Sky Net on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 11:38:15 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  They Can Sell It To... (4+ / 0-)

        ...China, India, Europe, and any number of other developing and increasingly thirsty countries. Oil is the most global of all commodities and it's not a very wise assumption that the US will always outbid all competitors. And even to the extent we do...the price of oil isn't going down. We won't be seeing $1.50/gallon gasoline again. And that fact has wide-ranging implications for our economy.

        •  They do already (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          HoundDog

          Oil producers sell to every country in the world.  They don't ask what your foreign policy is or whether you have a navy.  They don't sell to us because we force them to.

          Cynicism is what passes for insight among the mediocre.

          by Sky Net on Sun Aug 31, 2014 at 07:20:46 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Precisely the Point. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            HoundDog

            Oil's already a global commodity, and we can't assume that we'll always be customer number 1. Look at how little prices fell after the 2008 crash--only into the $70/barrel range--for evidence that the US is not the only available market, and that our hardship is not of much relevance to sellers when there are other buyers.

            But it matters to us whether we have a navy. Piracy is a small-scale demonstration of exactly that. Our navy currently enforces trade restrictions--on Iran, say--and a growing rival like China might not do the same in return, but they can certainly move to secure assets, exactly like they're doing in the Senkakus and the South China Sea. There's one reason why we haven't responded more forcefully to Chinese aggression down there--because they've got an increasingly capable navy themselves. To use a military term, we couldn't operate anywhere close to mainland China without incurring unacceptable losses. The Chinese know this.

            But the Chinese are already in the Middle East, Africa, and the Americas (including Canada). We're not about to close those markets to them. That horse left the barn a long time ago.

    •  Tough to be More Right than That. (0+ / 0-)

      Everything but everything but everything in the modern world depends upon oil. The fuel we put in our cars, planes and trains. The natural gas and other petroleum products used as feedstock for the plastics and other materials in them. The fuel used to transport the raw materials, parts and finished products. The chemicals we use every day--dish soap, shampoo, food packaging--everything was made using oil in some or multiple ways. It is the single most critical commodity on earth.  Our entire foreign policy can be analyzed, accurately, using access to oil as a guiding principle.

      Just about all of the world's present instability--which Kissinger refers to, but never explicitly relates to oil--is due to oil scarcity. Supply cannot keep up with growing demand, so prices remain consistently high, choking off growth and creating huge discontent around the world. Unlike in the 80's and late 90's, after the downturn of 2007-08, oil prices never collapsed into the low $20's per barrel (blame southeast Asia's rising thirst), because global demand never dropped far enough to allow that to happen, so cash-strapped Americans and Europeans couldn't get back to their former lifestyles. The fracking boomlet has helped the US economy recover somewhat, but only somewhat. Europe is not so lucky. The Arab Spring began because of the price of food. Putin is active in Ukraine not so much because of oil resources--Ukraine doesn't seem to have a whole lot--but because Ukraine is Russia's front doorstep. He simply can't afford to lose this fight. But oil and gas are his main weapons, holding all of Europe (particularly Germany and Italy) at bay.

      Kissinger pays lip service to the concept of American exceptionalism--a bit ironic, considering his rather imperialistic personal history--but his broad, not-very-specific vision of global cooperation and shared governance is hardly revolutionary. And as long as the corporations aren't at the helm, it's something I'd welcome.

  •  I guess we will always be at war somewhere in (4+ / 0-)

    ...Asia. I know that is sadly reductive, but it seems to be true. Are we destined to get involved every time some group of sociopaths starts beheading and bombing others?

    I wonder what would happen if he just told the world that we'll sit ISIS out and they'll have to stop them for a change? I believe on their way to a caliphate they are going to make a lot of enemies who now have the luxury of just waiting until the U.S. talks itself into yet another Asian conflict.

    At what point will the gains of ISIS conflict with Al-Qaeda and other such groups? At what point, if any, do people that have to live amongst these monster decide they are better off fighting rather than accommodating?

    I have lost almost all of the relief and hope I felt that night watching people tear down the Berlin Wall on CNN. It seems we've defined our national interests so broadly that we will be in a state of perpetual war.

    You will never see progress if you aren't willing to choose the better choice on the ballot in each and every cycle.

    by sebastianguy99 on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 06:10:52 PM PDT

    •  I'll bet if we didn't intervene the local (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bunsk, gravlax, Portlaw, JML9999

      governments that are happy to let us do their dirty work would have to step up to the plate and solve their own problems.

      Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

      by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 06:16:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think that's right. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        HoundDog

        There is no shortage of people who decry American imperialism yet they same folks want to know "why we aren't leading" whenever conflict breakouts around the globe. You name an ongoing conflict on the planet and you'll find no shortage of people who believe it is because the United States has "failed to lead".

        And then you have our MIC that,despite commanding more resources, is always scared of somebody and demanding more. And given that in the history of our species there have always been mean/cruel/greedy people, there will always be a "enemy" that threatens our now global interests.

        You will never see progress if you aren't willing to choose the better choice on the ballot in each and every cycle.

        by sebastianguy99 on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 08:34:04 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  a good start (7+ / 0-)

    would be if our foreign policy in general wasn't simply all about protecting and favoring the interests of US corporations (and occasionally US politicians), then lying and bullying to deny it to the rest of the world media or hide it from the American electorate

    when I see a republican on tv, I always think of Monty Python: "Shut your festering gob you tit! Your type makes me puke!"

    by bunsk on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 06:16:28 PM PDT

    •  I read Kissinger's piece thinking (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ypochris, HoundDog

      'OK Henry, start with some truth about US policy and history, maybe the solutions would be more successful if we stop with the BS.'

      "People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed; never throw out anyone. " Audrey Hepburn "A Beautiful Woman"

      by Ginny in CO on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 08:16:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Sounds Like Captain America:Winter Soldier (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HoundDog, certainot

    Hail Hydra

    I want 1 less Tiny Coffin, Why Don't You? Support The President's Gun Violence Plan.

    by JML9999 on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 06:17:50 PM PDT

  •  He laments the results of (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    native, brjzn, JML9999, HoundDog, cherrymapin

    american abdication of traditional american policy. The spiraling disorder that he sees (not wrongly) is solely the result of the american attempt under the neocons to actually dominate the world, instead of organizing it. The US during the Bush years destroyed the power sharing institutions that it itself built and that were its primary instruments of policy. Doing so the US castrated itself, it has not the power to dominate the world by force. After voluntarily abdicating from cooperative policy, the US is the last country on earth that can complain about the growing disorder.

    by now the train wreck is irreversible. There´s no one else who has a chance of organizing a world order (The Euros would have been the only ones with a faint chance, but proved unable) and the credibility of the US has been destroyed beyond retrieval for the foreseeable time. No way back now, we all are diminished all over the world and will have to be content to preserve regional order where possible unitl better times.

    An american foreign policy that would begin to repair the damage is not possible until the american domestic scene returns to sanity and that is not on the horizon.  I do credit Obama for at least keeping a lid on American irrationality for the time being. But repair, I´m afraid that wont come from the generation of living American politicans.

  •  A wonderful way to strengthen bonds... (8+ / 0-)

    ...across various spheres of influence would be to bundle Henry off to Den Haag, where he can speak his verities to the court.  This would be a lovely demonstration of transnational soft power in the European mode.

    It's interesting that Henry is still trying to be the American Bismarck, wanting an organized set of policy positions for every possible war game and system of alliances.   I'd turn to  Bacevich before Kissinger though -- we have these vast assumptions about our military reach and power, and the state apparatus necessary to sustain that power.  We've layered policy on top of these assumptions for so long that answering questions about alliances and gaming the world for the general staff seems like a kind of self deluding mendacity.  Kissinger has always seemed to long to return to a position of broker and analyst, conducting the great symphony.  Perhaps a better place to start is to get it down to a small chamber orchestra and then figure out what tunes to play.

    ...j'ai découvert que tout le malheur des hommes vient d'une seule chose, qui est de ne savoir pas demeurer en repos dans une chambre.

    by jessical on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 06:23:40 PM PDT

  •  Another Fish-Bicycle Heard From. (5+ / 0-)

    When he began drafting his essay the world had about 10 years to begin consequential alteration in climate change. Now that it's published we have 9.

    These goons are not even wrong.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 06:34:24 PM PDT

  •  Sounds like the Concert of the Great Powers (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gravlax, JML9999, HoundDog

    After the fall of Napoleon in 1815.

    Worked until 1848 and then....

    Anyway...

    a) HK needs to be in prison.

    b) a prison nursing home.

    Be of good comfort, Master Ridley, and play the man; we shall this day light such a candle by God's grace in England as shall never be put out.

    by Bollox Ref on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 06:36:16 PM PDT

  •  Before World War 2 the US was relatively content (13+ / 0-)

    to play second fiddle on the international stage - albeit regarding Latin America as its particular "sphere of influence". A reluctant America was kicked into the conflict by Japan, and thanks to an unprecedented alliance with the UK (which supplied a great deal of unacknowledged innovation and science to the team) ended the relatively short global war with an economy that was approximately 50% of global GDP.

    The world view of the average American getting their news primarily from US media (there are other options these days) hasn't budged much from the 1950s understanding of the world. The problem is that the US economy is now around 15% of global GDP and we still think we deserve our old clout on the international stage. How many Americans understand that China has built a massive high speed rail system from scratch in 5 years! US sanctions are increasingly ineffective as the global trade patterns rely less and less on the US market. On Ukraine it is Europe really in the hot seat over Russian sanctions since European-Russian trade dwarfs US-Russian trade. When it comes to technology - Europeans and others increasingly try to avoid US technology on military developments to avoid running afoul of ITAR.

    Militarily- the Bush-Cheney disaster in Iraq did not "shock and awe" the world - but rather pointed out fundamental weaknesses of America power. This single biggest weakness on display was the relatively small size of the US army - we simply could not sustain the troop levels required in Iraq to possibly provide the security needed for the "nation building" task we pretended to do. General Shinseki told Congress it would take 700,000 troops to occupy Iraq, and the problem was we simply didn't have an army that big. So we pretended his numbers were bogus, we ended his military career, and went ahead with hammering the nail in the coffin of US global hegemony.

    Everyone else in the real world knows that's what happened - but Americans are continually lied to about this.

    The reason I'm summarizing the arc of US military dominance and decline is to argue that era of unilateral US hard power geopolitics have come to an end. We can help regional allies - maybe - but if a big boy like Russia or China wants to play hardball - there is NOTHING we can do unilaterally to prevent it. If Russia is contained in Ukraine it will be by Ukrainians with our military assistance. Same thing for Vietnam in the South China Sea. We are too small militarily, and too dependent on toys over troops, to prevail on our own (even if we wanted to).

    But here's the thing - I don't think this is bad at all. As the Pentagon has pointed out in a number of studies, the single biggest global security threat to the United States is climate change - not changes of landlord around the world. The absolute best thing we can do unilaterally is get off OIL as fast as possible. On every front from renewable energy sources, advanced energy storage, electrification of trains, cars, trucks to conservation of resources like water we need to focus on creating a sustainable economy, not keep playing in a global ponzi scheme. Every city should be like Chattanooga with 1GB internet access (at a minimum). We should be building now to mitigate the climate changes already locked in and demonstrate to the world that getting off oil can be done in a major economy. And we need to publicly, repeatedly shame and damn those politicians deliberately getting in the way of this agenda.

    •  A remarkable well written and cogent comment for (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PatriciaVa, JG in MD

      this time of night islandchris.  

      I'm guessing you are either a tenured faculty professor political science or government at the Kennedy School or some kind of foreign policy specialist from the State Department, Pentagon, or intelligence community.

      I don't mean to pry, but you've raised my curiosity.

      Few people can just jot off the top of their heads such well written, organized seven paragraph essays in near perfect publican form and so densely packed with specific facts and historical exemplars supporting their thesis unless they've practiced a whole lot.

      Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

      by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 07:22:09 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Or perhaps the US was drawn into WW2 b/c . (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gravlax

      ....President Roosevelt saw a Great Power void that the US was positioned to fill, thereby benefiting from the spoils of war.

      Biggest global security threat?  China asserting extraterritorial claims in the South China Sea and East China Sea.  Nothing else comes close.

      Climate change?  If the Pentagon really believed that climate change was the largest threat, it would ban coal sales to China, as well as prohibit our automobile companies from participating in the Chinese car market.

      Learn about Centrist Economics, learn about Robert Rubin's Hamilton Project. www.hamiltonproject.org

      by PatriciaVa on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 07:53:29 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Kissinger is a classic example of a teacher by ... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gravlax, HoundDog, Eric Nelson

    Kissinger is a classic example of a teacher by exception, rather than example. As for a new world order, America would do best by abandoning its hubristic mind set and devoting all of its energy to forming a collaboration of like minded countries to address issues such as climate change and basic human rights for all.

    •  Agreed. Well said. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gravlax, Eric Nelson

      Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

      by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 07:22:45 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  All Great Powers have a "hubristic" mindset (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gravlax

      Like-minded countries?

      Right now, the US and China each have car markets of 17M annual new autos.

      In 20 years, the US car market is projected to be 17M.

      In China, 41M.

      You want "collaboration" with respect to climate change.

      How do you propose we "influence" China to not sell more than 17M new cars by 2034?

      Learn about Centrist Economics, learn about Robert Rubin's Hamilton Project. www.hamiltonproject.org

      by PatriciaVa on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 07:38:48 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  In my view, America should step back from Wilson. (5+ / 0-)

    I am not one of those who believes it is our manifest destiny to spread our brand of democracy everywhere. Nor should be see our role as maintaining some false sense of stability. Or stamping out internal conflicts and imposing freedom.

    Instead, I envision an America that is largely neutral on global order, pluralistic on the issue of Democracy and seeks as its primary goal to begin getting a public policy grip on the real unpoliced powers of the world, multinational corporations and sovereign wealth entities. And we should remain militarily strong enough to defend ourselves and TREATY ALLIES from invasion. And we should deal with international terrorism through intelligence, law enforcement, and in some cases drones and special forces. But other than dealing with imminent threats, we should be benign and neutral.

    •  I like it. Perhaps, I would add a carefully (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Eric Nelson

      selected number of humanitarian "investments" such as helping to improve health infrastructures in poor places like Western Africa where relatively small amount of spending can do enormous good, the people have no other options, and the "return on investment" in term of American good will is extremely high.

      Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

      by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 07:27:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Neutrality has its merits, needn't be rigid. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        HoundDog

        Such as the call protect human rights. Well, that's a big commitment most of the time, if deeds mean more than words. Were not going to be able to sort out every massacre, but a real bone fide genocide perhaps we could carefully consider military intervention. But on most internal or regional matters, we can and should remain neutral and humanitarian in posture to all who seek assistance.

        •  Agreed. (0+ / 0-)

          Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

          by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 08:08:31 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Kossacks in California would not be Americans tday (0+ / 0-)

      ..had it not been for Manifest Destiny.

      I do believe that we should deal with terrorism via drones and special forces, however.

      Learn about Centrist Economics, learn about Robert Rubin's Hamilton Project. www.hamiltonproject.org

      by PatriciaVa on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 07:42:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  New World order aka PNAC (Bill Kristol) (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HoundDog, cherrymapin

    ..or as Condoleeza Rice re-framed it: Plans for Redrawing the Middle East: The Project for a “New Middle East”

    So When HK talks of..

    The international order thus faces a paradox: Its prosperity is dependent on the success of globalization, but the process produces a political reaction that often works counter to its aspirations.
    And my first question would be to define: "prosperity is dependent on the success of globalization"

    What is prosperity? for whom is this prosperity gauged?.. for the people/workers of the world? or is it a measurement of the GDP and WallStreet/Dow Jones/Big Oil/ Global corporations

    What are the problems that work "counter to its asprirations"? who is it? and what are its aspirations?

    What is globalization?
    If globalization meant  unionizing workers globally (fat chance of that) then lets' do that.

    If "It" is the people; the populace/workers and not  the top of this corporate pyramid of power, but are the people/workers who I'm assuming are also the "political reaction" (the problem) of which HK speaks, then let's do discuss those "problems" and those peoples aspirations - yes

    But HK is it's already framing the discussion from the vaunted perspective of only the "leadership" and what's more has placed the US as geocentric relative to the world.

    We are NOT the center of the world

    HK has always talked to only that tiny minority of "leaders" in his narrow view at the top. The rest of the people are numbers to his kind - statistics - cannon fodder - the masses

    So in the mean time let's also talk this over a bit:

     - sorry if I'm not being very helpful - I've been watching Oliver Stones: The Untold History of the United States; Chapter 8 on Reagan then chapter 9 on Cheny/Bush/Rumsfled et al  - arrrrgh

    Thx HoundDog  

    •  You should cut and paste this comment as a whole (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Eric Nelson

      post Eric.  

      Well said.

      Humor Alert! No statement from this UID is intended to be true, including this one. Intended for recreational purposes only. Unauthorized interpretations may lead to unexpected results. This waiver void where prohibited. Artistic License - 420420

      by HoundDog on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 08:09:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Myths surrounding economic globalization (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NoMoreLies, Eric Nelson, HoundDog

      Eric Nelson is wise to dispute the myth that globalization brings prosperity.

      Way too many Democrats, including our dear POTUS, believe that more global trade = more prosperity. History clearly says otherwise. The globalization myth is part of the supply-side ideology: if we help big business increase their profits, we'll all be better off.

      A new foreign policy would be one free of oil industry interests, the military-industrial complex interests, and the financial markets' interests. To free ourselves of our corporate overlords we need LESS trade: Employ local carpenters and electricians to install solar panels instead of buying fossil fuels from other states or abroad. Stop selling weapons both internally and abroad. Lessen our dependence on big ag and support local farms. In economic terms lets promote import substitutions. Once we rely on smaller, more local business entities then perhaps we will have some hope of addressing climate change, unemployment, etc

  •  He was thinking, "My world order." (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HoundDog

    You can't make this stuff up.

    by David54 on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 07:46:18 PM PDT

  •  Kissinger: "I propose a simple solution to these (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gravlax, Eric Nelson, HoundDog

    global problems. Put one man in charge of deciding all of the global policy decisions. That person should be one of great wisdom and experience and if chosen, I will humbly serve. "

    You can't make this stuff up.

    by David54 on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 07:51:45 PM PDT

  •  'World Order' is code for our lunatic class (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    marsanges, NoMoreLies, HoundDog, skod

    who make policy for 'US hegemony in all spheres.' Full-Spectrum Dominance never went away as a dream of our various establishments.

    That, as any sane person could tell you, isn't going to happen. Unless, maybe, if the entire world is in chaos and all possible centers of opposition are surrounded and undermined. (Why does that seem familiar, somehow?)

    Does anyone else remember the atmosphere around international politics c. 1999, 2000. Though we had the 'coup d'etat by legal means' attempt going on domestically, might you recall that there was a feeling the world was getting along; things were improving pretty much everywhere?

    Then we got the foul spawn of Bush Sr and his gang of cut-throats in power. And that gang had published their world-goals, which were the aspirations of not only themselves, but a large section of the US military/intelligence/financial apparatuses.

    And this said, in plain language and meaning, we have to prepare the battlefield by taking out Middle East/North Africa regimes we don't like, and then move on to the main wars against Russia and China.

    It is way lost somewhere on the internet, but on March 16, 2003 Wen Jiabao took over as Premier of China. March 20 was the US invasion. It was a day or two later that Wen went on a national broadcast to say "look, this business in Iraq is the opening shot for a war on China. So we're going to have to spend more of the budget to give us the weapons and means to fight this war they want." (I wish I could find the link, but it was in some Hong Kong weekly, in English.)

    Well, now we've got a destabilized Middle East and North Africa, we've got Africom sending troops throughout Asia to counter the Chinese business advances, we've got the 'pivot to Asia' and anyone notice the action around Russia's borders in the last decade-plus?

    The World Order people like Kissenger and Brzezinski, neo-Cons, and neo-Libs pine for can be best expressed as "A boot stomping on the face of humanity, forever." Though they wouldn't put it quite that way, them's the eggs you gotta break to make the US Hegemonic World Order.

    So, how about we as Dems bring up to our candidates the reality that our foreign policy is based on an insanity which includes paranoia and delusions of grandeur. And when I say "insanity" I mean it precisely in the way I'd mean it if someone proposed making Oak trees sing opera by putting toast in the branches.

    And we're fucking nuts -- and irresponsible -- if we let this shit go on in our name, and at our expense.


    My country goes dead making money.

    by Jim P on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 08:40:43 PM PDT

  •  Kissinger's view is greatly exaggerated (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HoundDog

    Following the breakup of European Empires, plus the Ottoman Empire and, briefly, Japan, we got vast NeoColonial meddling by the emerging superpowers almost everywhere. In those days we used to have well over a hundred Communist and anti-Communist tyrannies and dozens of revolving civil wars and insurgencies all the time, while the US, the Soviet Union, and to a lesser extent China engaged in the posturing of Mutual Assured Destruction.

    Today one can actually enumerate the major hot spots, only one of which comes close to Pol Pot levels of insanity and viciousness. We have war and threats of war in

    North Korea

    Drug wars in South and Central America and Asia

    Middle East—Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, I/P

    Yemen

    South Sudan

    Libya

    CAR

    Congo

    Iran

    Afghanistan

    Pakistan

    Northern Nigeria

    Russia vs. Ukraine

    plus the Ebola emergency.

    Did I miss any others that are comparably nasty? There are other tyrannies that are currently stable, but whose time will come.

    This is still too many, with too many deaths, but none threatens a collapse of world order. Only the various kinds of rabid authoritarian look at the world in that way, because the only world order that is threatened is their opportunities to rule it. It can be corporate greed, racism, Religious Right bigotry and Dominionism, NeoCon hubris, or other elitist greeds, hatreds, and delusions, but it cannot be empathy. The rest of us are looking at how to build functioning societies worldwide that will not turn into such hotspots.

    Mostly countries are happy to do the heavy lifting themselves over the next few generations, and only need a few obstacles cleared out of the way. In general, they would rather do without our help, if the help has to be defined by the worst of our power elites. Kissinger isn't even the worst of them, but he is plenty bad enough.

    Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

    by Mokurai on Sat Aug 30, 2014 at 11:54:17 PM PDT

  •  how easy to relieve that 'need for order' (0+ / 0-)

    This is a list of 76 universities for Rush Limbaugh that endorse global warming denial, racism, sexism, and GOP lies by broadcasting sports on over 170 Limbaugh radio stations.

    by certainot on Sun Aug 31, 2014 at 09:46:11 AM PDT

  •  I think it's very interesting (0+ / 0-)

    that Dr. Kissinger said: "A nation founded explicitly on an idea of free and representative governance, the U.S. identified its own rise with the spread of liberty and democracy and credited these forces with an ability to achieve just and lasting peace."

    And yet he doesn't address the fact that the US is no longer "founded on the idea of a free and representative gov't."

    The teapublican party, the Patriot Act and the NSA have removed those pesky 'liberty and democracy' ideals from America's lexicon so what can we work with internationally to move peace forward?

    Between SCOTUS and the republican congress, we as a nation are hanging on with our fingernails, and I personally don't see ANY domestic, let alone any foreign global solutions, in the near future.

    "I have met the enemy and he is... us!"
    -Pogo 1976

    99% OF THE REPUBLICANS MAKE THE REST LOOK BAD

    by BarryWolk on Sun Aug 31, 2014 at 04:44:51 PM PDT

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