Thursday, 5 July 2018

Get On the Trump Peace Train!

Finally an American president has woken up to the fact that World War II, not to mention the cold war, is over: there’s no need for US troops to occupy Germany.

Vladimir Putin isn’t going to march into Berlin in a reenactment of the Red Army taking the Fuehrer-bunker – but even if he were so inclined, why won’t Germany defend itself?

So let’s take inventory of our President’s recent pronouncements:
This isn’t good enough for the formerly anti-interventionist “left,” with the commies over at Alternet declaring that the US getting out of NATO would be “a gift to Putin,” not to mention “insane.”
It isn’t good enough for the tattered remnants of the left-wing “peace movement,” which hardly exists anymore, and spends most of its time and resources either attacking Trump or else bloviating about immigration. If you can find a single mention of either the Singapore summit or the upcoming Helsinki summit on the Code Pink web site, please let me know, because it’s either well hidden or else nonexistent.

It isn’t good enough for Daniel Larison, the weirdly priggish foreign policy commentator over at The American Conservative, who spends many of his waking hours tweeting any and all derogatory material about the President, and sneering at the Singapore summit. (He hasn’t dared mention the Helsinki summit as yet.) I bring this up because Larison’s monomaniacal hatred is a textbook example of Trump Derangement Syndrome: it has so distorted the functioning of his intellect that it has actually made him seem quite stupid – which is definitely not the case. Here is someone who has been a stalwart anti-interventionist for many years suddenly going bonkers because of a subjective emotional reaction – I’m guessing here — although it could be just the normal careerism that is so much a part of the policy wonk scene.

It isn’t good enough for those clueless “libertarians” who think Bill Weld is one of them. These luftmenschen never cared about foreign policy anyway: for the Reason crowd, it’s an afterthought. And with the Koch empire turning left these days, the need to blend in with the warmongering Democrats – who are now on the receiving end of Koch dollars – is imperative.

Ah, but this outpouring of good news from Trumplandia is good enough for me, and here’s why:

For over twenty years, I’ve labored in this particular vineyard, being told I’m an “extremist” for wanting us to mind our own business and institute a foreign policy that puts America first. I’ve been saying it’s time to get out of NATO until I’m blue in the face. I’ve been agitating relentlessly for an end to the Korean standoff. I’ve been saying it’s time to meet with Kim Jong-un, and also time to work with Putin to end the threat of World War III. And when the President of the United States takes up those causes, telling us he wants to bring our troops home from defending the world against itself — I’ll be damned if I’ll react in any manner except for some very loud cheering.

I don’t care about his other views, quite frankly. They are irrelevant. Because if and when he implements his “isolationist” policies, the size, scope, and expense of government will radically shrink. That’s because the rationale for big government will be very much weaker: the political class won’t have the “national security” angle to justify universal surveillance and huge taxpayer outlays to foreign ingrates. If he manages to lift the burden of empire from the weary shoulders of the American people, the federal government will get smaller despite the intent of the Trump administration or its successors: the process will be as near to automatic as any human activity can possibly be.

[Posted at the SpookyWeather blog, July 5th, 2018.]

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