Monday, November 29

Barnett

Signs over on Kith and Kin that Macon has accepted Barnett into his heart. As I said in the comments, I am so happy.

Question for Tom: What do you think of tax cuts as an economic growth engine?

Gnarly economics in the Journal
  • The Bush Administration is supply-side rather than fiscally conservative.
  • The dollar as de facto global reserve currency and America's independent monetary policy.
As long as cooler heads prevail, the Chinese economic miracle will continue peacefully, no matter how many subs they have.

Energy drives every(developed)one's foreign policy, especially the US and China.

Ahh, the lovely anachronism of it all: Castro's socialist economic policies. Fidel may want to serve the little people, but he sure doesn't.

Energy drives redux: India and Pakistan look at a pipeline to Iran.

It's nice that the Association of Southeast Asia Nations, aka ASEAN, had eponymized my name. But seriously, the post's about an Asian EU.

Re: Sudan
To me, it's situations like this that speak to the compelling need for the Core as a whole to be able to put forth a SysAdmin force that would enable a regional entity like the AU to do more than just run around snapping photos and taking notes while the killing continues unabated. Everyone in the Core wants this situation to settle, but we don't have a transparent, non-zero-sum process for making it happen, and that process can't come into being until the military resources are pooled and coherently arranged in a larger whole, and that international military capability won't come about until the Pentagon shows it's serious of fielding its own version of a Sys Admin force.

Then Tom gets into some interesting number crunching about the size of a global force and what the US's active and reserve component would be and how we're already heading toward that in some ways.

The world votes on our elections in buying our debt.
American can afford its current Leviathan force, but it cannot afford to self-finance the bulk of the follow-on SysAdmin work that will ensue from efforts like our recent takedown in Iraq. The coming renegotiation of that security burden is inevitable, otherwise you’ll see American withdraw dramatically from the world militarily.

Admitting that strategic reality is the first step toward making the deals we’ll need to make if we’re going to get truly serious about waging a Global War on Terrorism that will clearly last decades.

There is no alternative.
Ukraine
Powell can’t leave fast enough, as far as I’m concerned. At least Rice will know Moscow from her elbow.
Europe, like the US, is facing some tough decisions on 'social security'. They already missed the baby boat. Their choices now are change their policy or let in more immigrants.

Asia's developing economy is facing really bad pollution.

Another assertion of the role of values in the election (though a little broader than you might think). What do you say, Macon?

Special Ops
Frustrated with the Global War on Terrorism and our inability to track down and kill certain terrorist leaders hiding away in certain ungoverned territories or states, the Pentagon is rewriting the rule set on clandestine ops by Special Forces. Frankly, this is a very good thing. We want these guys to have the loosest possible rule sets, with the world as their playground. That sort of direct action belongs with the Pentagon in a GWOT, not the CIA. We’re not hunting spies in this war, but actual combatants.

Kerry was right: this is a police action . . . inside the Core. But Bush was also right: this is a war inside the Gap.
The way forward in Palestine

A word of thanks to our military personnel.

An article Tom contributed to about the future of naval procurement, including unmanned vehicles.

Random thought: I wonder what Tom thinks of the Osprey...
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