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When I saw this article posted on facebook, I thought, wait a minute, ONE AND A HALF CHEERS FOR AMERICA’S DECLINE, COMING FROM THE HEART OF AMERICANS AND NOT FROM SOME FOREIGN STATE WHO HAS A BLISTERING HATRED TOWARDS US, that can't be right, that doesn’t make sense? But read on... it is correct and not only that, it DOES MAKE SENSE.

We the United States of America have been bullying our way around the world for some time now. Acting like we were the only ones that mattered on this block. We (our different administrations’) have been throwing around our military might for so long, it has become an acceptable practice for anyone who we vote into power.

Most of us (the little people) don’t want our children thrown into harm’s way with the slightest drop of a FAT HEADED HAT. We don’t want our media full of horrible news about the maiming and torturing of fellow human beings. We don’t want our rights whittled down to a size that only resembles freedom and we don’t want to feel hated every time we step upon some foreign soil. But that’s what the array of war-mongering leaders has led us into.

Maybe it is time for America to feel what it’s like to have sand kicked into its face, the same way we, the bullies of the planet, have kicked sand into the faces of others.

Perhaps then, we will get that heaping dose of what it’s like to be on the receiving end of a giant flyswatter and we will be forced to develop a necessary empathy towards others. Maybe, by becoming just another Nation instead of an Arrogant Superpower we will feel the urge to join hands with any part of the world that want and deserves to live in peace. (There I go again... DREAMING A DREAM THAT WILL PROBABLY NEVER BE!) thinkingblue

One and a Half Cheers for American Decline: The Future's Not Ours and That's Good News
Monday 20 September 2010

by: Tom Engelhardt | TomDispatch | Op-Ed

Compare two assessments of the American future:
In the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll in which 61% of Americans interviewed considered "things in the nation" to be "on the wrong track," 66% did "not feel confident that life for our children’s generation will be better than it has been for us." (Seven percent were "not sure," and only 27% "felt confident.") But here was the polling question you’re least likely to see discussed in your local newspaper or by Washington-based pundits: "Do you think America is in a state of decline, or do you feel that this is not the case?" Sixty-five percent of respondents chose as their answer: "in a state of decline."
Meanwhile, Afghan war commander General David Petraeus was interviewed last week by Martha Raddatz of ABC News. Asked whether the American war in Afghanistan, almost a decade old, was finally on the right counterinsurgency track and could go on for another nine or ten years, Petraeus agreed that we were just at the beginning of the process, that the "clock" was only now ticking, and that we needed "realistic expectations" about what could happen and how fast. "Progress" in Afghanistan, he commented, was often so slow that it could feel like "watching grass grow or paint dry."
Now, I’m not a betting man, but I’d head for Vegas tomorrow and put my money down against the general and on Americans generally when it comes to assessing the future. I’d put money on the fact that the United States is indeed "in a state of decline" and I’d make a wager at odds that U.S. troops won’t be in Afghanistan in nine or ten years. And I’d venture to suggest as well that the two bets would be intimately connected, and that the American people understand at a visceral level far more than Washington cares to know about our real situation in the world. And I’d put my money on one more thing: however lousy it may feel, it’s not all bad news, not by a long shot.
Decline Today, Not Tomorrow
Let’s start with Afghanistan. Yes, we’ve been "in," or intimately involved with, Afghanistan not just for almost a decade, but for a significant chunk of the last 30 years. And for much of that time we’ve poured our wealth into creating chaos and mayhem there in the name of "freedom," "liberation," "reconstruction," and "nation-building." We started in the distant days of the Reagan administration with the CIA funneling vast sums of money and advanced weaponry into the anti-Soviet jihad. At that time, we happily supported outright terror tactics, including car-bomb and even camel-bomb attacks on the Soviets in Afghan cities and bomb attacks on movie theaters as well. These acts were committed by Islamic fundamentalists of the most extreme sort, and our officials, labeling them "freedom fighters," couldn’t say enough nice things about them.
That was our expensive first decade in Afghanistan. In 1989, when the Russians withdrew in defeat, we departed in triumph. You know the next round well enough: we returned in 2001, armed and eager, carrying suitcases full of cash, and ready to fight many of the same fundamentalists we (or our allies the Pakistanis) had set loose, funded, and armed in the previous two decades. MORE HERE

NOW LET'S GO BACK IN TIME, TO A PLACE WHERE DECLINE WOULD BEGIN: thinkingblue

Published on Friday, October 18, 2002 in the Bangor Daily News
Pax Americana?
by Anthony Aman

For many months the people of the world have been trying to figure out just what it is that President Bush is trying to do. Many people think the administration's goals are simply to enrich themselves and their supporters. Others cite this war as an attempt at "closure on the Gulf War" - the son completing the father's job. Still more believe oil is the primary goal. An astonishing document has come to light that finally puts the pieces of the puzzle together.

The name of this most revealing report is "Rebuilding America's Defenses." Details of this treatise was written by Jay Bookman, deputy editorial page editor of the Atlanta Journal-Consitiution, and published on Sept. 29. "The official story on Iraq has never made sense," Bookman writes. "The connection that the Bush administration has tried to draw between Iraq and al-Qaida has always seemed contrived and artificial. In fact, it was hard to believe that smart people in the Bush administration would start a major war based on such flimsy evidence." He continues, "The pieces didn't fit. Something else had to be going on; something was missing."

The report was written five months before the attacks of Sept. 11 and is authored by six members of the current administration, including Paul Wolfowitz, John Bolton, I. Lewis Libby, along with 21 other people who attended meetings or contributed papers for the report. Bookman goes on to explain what the plans are for world military domination and how Bush has mirrored those plans so far. "In essence, it lays out a plan for a permanent U.S. military and economic domination of every region on the globe, unfettered by international treaty or concern. And to make the plan a reality, it envisions a stark expansion of our global military presence."

"Rebuilding America's Defenses" puts the entire world on notice. America will get what it wants, from any country on earth, by any means necessary. If we perceive resistance ("a threat to national security") we reserve the right to strike preemptively with or without the support of another country. The authors of this amazing manifesto dream of an American Empire with George W. Bush as its first emperor. Bookman goes on to say, "They envision the creation of what they call a worldwide 'Pax Americana,' or American peace. But so far, the American people have not appreciated the true extent of that ambition."

Apparently neither do our elected representatives. Calls to Olympia Snowe's office and Susan Collins' office yielded no knowledge of such a document. There has been no discussion of this vision of Pax Americana in the congressional debates. Not surprisingly! If they were to debate such a scheme it would lend legitimacy to the Bush plan for expanding America's military domination just before the elections. If the American people really understood the implications of this plan how would they react? How would our allies react? How will our adversaries react?

This scheme presents scenarios of apocalyptic proportions. The world's resources are limited; our power is not. If we control the resources, we could control the world. But what about the people who live in those resource rich countries? Will they simply join with us to promote Pax Americana, quietly acquiescing to our demands? Is it not likely that resistance will be encountered from every quarter in every way possible?

What terrors await us as we accumulate more of the world's wealth and territory? Will this truly create "American Peace"? How many more American citizens will be required to enlist in the armed forces to replace the "spent assets" as time drags on? What cost will we be required to bear for this scheme? The war on Iraq is estimated to reach $100 billion and that's just the first country in the Axis of Evil. What sacrifices must we accept to fund this vision? Once we conquer one country how will we hold on to it while going on to the next, and the next? Will we go the way of the Soviet Union, bankrupt by our own military overspending and overreaching ambition? Rome's empire collapsed and the world settled into the Dark Ages. Who can predict what fate awaits us if we should fail? MORE HERE

Originally posted to thinkingblue on Sat Sep 25, 2010 at 08:17 AM PDT.

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