I think our role should be the same as other countries in that we are good neighbors. If my neighbor looks like he needs help, I offer it within my means. They either accept it or refuse it. I don't mettle in their business or tell them how to run their lives. Now if they steal from me or attack my family, that may require a military response. BTW there are some pretty powerful countries out there besides America that should consider their responsibilities as neighbors too.
In any given period of history, there are usually several powerful bad actors on the world stage who are only restrained by greater force or by the the threat of greater force.
It's true that we won WW2 in 4 years, but tens of thousands of troops are still in Germany, Japan and Korea, not to fight fascism to be sure, but as part of the Cold War, which lasted over 40 years in Europe, until the Soviet Union collapsed, and still is not finished in East Asia. I'm not sure how this could have been accomplished without keeping troops in these areas for extended periods of time, short of threatening instant nuclear war in the meantime if the Soviets or the Chinese or the N Koreans stepped over the wrong borders.
As for Afghanistan (which even Obama said was the 'right' war), yes, we could withdraw and let the Taliban take over again, if we decide the attendant risk is worth not having to keep troops there.
Not sure we won it. True we lost maybe half a million troops but Russia was in it for twice a long a us and lost 27 million troops. They 'won' WWII we just mopped up and took the credit.
As usual, Vic, your numbers are more than a little bit cockeyed.
In terms of military deaths, the US lost about 400,000, the Soviets about 10 million, to compare apples to apples, not "27 million troops". There were about 17 million war-related civilian deaths in the Soviet Union.
Furthermore, the Soviet Union was not in WW2 "twice as long" as us. They were in it (not counting when they attacked Finland and Poland) from June, 1941 to May, 1945, or about 3 years and 11 months. We were in it from Dec, 1941 to May, 1945, or about 3 years and 5 months.
This is not to say the Soviets didn't do the vast majority of the heavy lifting against Germany, but to suggest that they could have single-handedly won is not at all obvious. If the Afrika Korps had been available for action in Russia, for example, or if the Japanese had attacked Siberia instead of Pearl Harbor, the result might well have been different.
But to make you happy, Vic, let's agree that we won on the fronts on which we were directly active: North Africa, Italy, Western Europe and of course the Pacific, where we defeated the Japanese with no significant Soviet help.
I'll agree if you give Russia a win in Manchuria which Japan held until the last days of the war.
Talk about mop-up operations... the Manchurian campaign, if you can call it that, started about 6 days before the Japanese agreed to surrender.
Sure, let's give them that.
Neither actually. I'm into the Libertarian role; it's called "mind your own damn business. Humanitarianism starts with our own. When we fix all of the shit that sucks here? I'd be more than happy to help the rest if possible. AFTER. We save starving children right here; I've seen it. Hell, I've been one.
Sounds good. Let's start there.
This makes me think of the Carnation Revolution.
And that made me wonder what was the Carnation Revolution. Now I know.
Portugal is a country with a lot of History- and for once, we did something that wasn't bloody or barbaric. Just... good.
I probably should have put a link to anyone who doesn't know about it...
I think the middle east is all about the oil. If they had no oil we could leave them to fight themselves forever
Wouldn't that be wonderful.
The U.S. should not be looking abroad for dragons to slay.
This sentiment makes a lot of sense to me, especially considering our national debt. First thing we need to do is put an end to our hyper-intervention(-alistic) foreign policy. Doing so would hopefully reduce the defense budget (from its current $583 billion price tag).
We also need to get control of our spending in order to at least stop the surging national debt. In 2015 the interest on the debt alone cost us $223 billion, or 6% of the national budget. These interest payments are projected to be the fastest growing area of federal spending. Until we control our debt, we will continue to lose our ability to help anyone, including ourselves.
Once we get all these things done, I'd be all for humanitarian aid to other countries.
Keeping in mind that our debt to GDP is floating around 100%, same as most industrialized countries. Japans is more than twice that.
Think about it this way. If you have a $100,000 mortgage and owe $30 on total your family's cars and your income is $90,000 your equivalent debt to FDP (family domestic product) is 144%.
I know your wife does not allow that to happen in your family, but that is not considered 'crazy' by any means in the US.
People freak out about the debt. It's not a big deal.
I don't understand my friend. If what I read is correct, the amount of interest we pay on the debt will continue to grow. How is that not a problem?
Because we print the money. Almost literally all the money in the world.
It's not like the USA is a person or a company or even a conglomerate multinational corporation, the USA is the only world superpower that can control the world's economy by embargo, war, quantitative easing/tightening, and other mechanisms. Without the USA there is no world economy.
With few exceptions most other currency are not backed by 'gold', they are backed by US dollars.
Very few economist can even comprehend the mathematics and theories at that level. It is far beyond the textbook 'macroeconomic' principles, they just do not apply at this level.
Paying debt at that level is no different than buying bombs, or even cotton - it is simply a currency exchange that stimulates the world economy. It just recirculates cash that will be used to buy American goods and services.
And we can just print more if we can't afford it.
Because everyone else backs their 'dollars' on our dollars it is no different than mining for more gold - it's just rocks.
For 200,000 years the world based its economies on rocks, shiney rocks and whoever dig up the most shiney rocks was the richest -
now they base it on paper, green paper - and whoever prints the most is king (we have a monopoly on green paper.) Rocks, Papers, (Scissors?)
Not sure why 99% of the world's people do not get this? Everyone is worries about the US debt. Guess what? if the one percent thought it was a problem they could pay it off tomorrow and still have enough left over for prime ribs and yachts. If the Rothschilds, Rockefellers, Du Ponts, Morgans thought that US debt threatened the world order, there would be no debt.
ITS NOT A PROBLEM. Really.
You can give your stuff away though. Feel free.
Vic, your socialism is showing! Obama has been draining the wealth of America for 8 years. It has only brought our economy to a screeching halt and instigated conflict across the world. Please, take your warm and fuzzy sounding platitudes and stick them.... in an unthinkable, uncomfortable place.
I learned them all in a book you recommended I read.
No Vic. "Force your countrymen to pay unreasonable taxes to be distributed as your King sees fit" is some other book.
The book you reference has to do with your personal giving.
I didn't say force, I said 'should". Big difference, same book.
It list what we should do, and then specifically says not to judge those that don't.
OP is not a judgment, it is a suggestion.
I see. So, you are just suggesting that your countrymen be forced to pay unreasonable taxes to be distributed as your King sees fit.
If that's such a great idea, why do you suppose Jesus didn't say it that way? But, instead he spoke to individuals to be charitable on their own to others.
Maybe you're hiding behind the robes of Jesus, twisting stuff around again, hell bent on giving away power and authority to government.
I'm not hell bent on anything.
You seem very concerned about justifying your position that Jesus wants you to fight against taxes and complain when you think the government is being to generous with your money.
I am saying it is not my money it is Caesar's and I am suggesting he use it for peace not war.
You can work your position out with Jesus if you want. Please don't try to convince me that money is more important than brotherly love or that fighting the government is more noble than suggesting war is not the best solution to the world's problems.
Then by all means render unto Cesar! And to God what is God's.
Oh, that's right, you don't believe in God. Maybe that's why you're so eager to have everyone hand it all over to government.
I render. I am not asking you to do anything. I am suggesting what the government might consider doing with my renderings. If you choose not to render I don't care. Why do you seem to care that I don't mind paying taxes?
I'm pretty sure I said, ... yup there it is - "Then by all means render unto Cesar! "
I render just fine. I pay my taxes and give what I feel is appropriate to the charities I myself approve.
Why do you feel it necessary for government to handle my charitable giving?
Bud, I don't. I said a humanitarian response is better than a military one. You inferred all kinds of things about taxes and some imagined desire to confiscate your money.
So neither the humanitarian response or military response was to be performed by the government?
The desire for government to confiscate money is hardly imagined.
And if government wasn't on your mind, what was all that about Cesar?
Come on Vic, can't you be honest in these conversations? If you're gonna be all socialist, at least be a proud socialist!
Of course we are talking about the government.
Still not clear on why if you pay taxes, and the government spends that money on war and I would prefer that the money was spent on peace and you disagree why are we arguing? I didn't ask anyone to raise your taxes.
Of course you are asking for increased taxes! When the government is involved with giving away taxpayer money, they are;
Have no concept of an empty wallet
Have no Constitutional authority to do so
THAT is why we are arguing.
Budwick, I don't want to argue about what I meant by this post.
Let me say it another way.
//The USA spends about $600 billion on the military. I would prefer they spend less and divert those same dollars (without raising Budwick's taxes one penny) to more humanitarian efforts.
This is a great post VicZen... I agree. It's time more people thought this way... I'm addressing mostly those egoists who think America is so great, cut it down to size.
First off, America already does this... AND NO ONE F'N NOTICES!! But billions to dollars in humanity efforts and often times it's not noticed because the local groups take all the American stuff off, and claim it's from their group and how awesome their group is (even though the US paid for it).
Second off, your philosophy of no Military is about the same as the U.N.s philosophy, and they just get used and abused in any conflict to the point they have become worthless at getting hard task completed and then beg for military help.
Don't get me wrong, it sounds good and nice but when put into reality, it has not been effective... it's a lot like communism. Everyone do their equal share and everyone gets threat equal for their hard work... until a greedy bastard gets in power and stops handing out equal amounts keeping more for him, his friends and those that he see as superior to the public, to the point the general public find it hard to live off what they are getting.
Yep. That's why I said "should" and "needed".
I fully get what "is" and what we "have"
I'm not even sure those words belong together.
"Destiny" does not relate to "prosperity" and neither relates to "serve". "Superpower" is not a "role", as if there were a script or something. "Humanitarian" and "military" are offered as code words to excite prejudices. This is not a useful way to start a discussion.
Not looking for discussion, only interested in votes.
The Destiny of American Prosperity should be to pull America out of the gutter first. Then and only then to focus on a very pin point version of Globalism designed to serve the US and the interest of its Citizens.
Those were chartable words turned into a poorly ochestrated bible study.
And how much is this going to cost now?
Way more than you'll ever make.
Prosperity is a thing of the past.. I wish usa would just let other countries alone and focus on helping those of us who live here.
You know what? I don't disagree that we should focus on ourselves first.
Here are some facts I find interesting:
Percent of people who live in the USA= 4.4% of the world
Percent of land owned by USA=6.6% of the world
Percent of military power owned by USA=37% of all forces in the world (more than China, Russia, Japan, Germany, UK, Canada, Australia, Italy, and all of the middle east combined)
Percent of wealth owned by USA= 41.6% of all the wealth in the world.
Number of American families that own 50% of all the wealth in the USA? 40. Forty families American families own 20% of all the money in the entire world.
Not saying it is bad, just saying that if you feel like American prosperity is gone we might want to look at some of our policies.
It's not a big surprise that when one country has so much more than any other country that people might not prefer us if we spent money on fresh water and schools instead of bullets and bombs.
"Percent of people who live in the USA= 4.4% of the world
Percent of land owned by USA=6.6% of the world"
Heck, that's nothing.
Percent of people who live in Canada = 0.5% of the world
Percent of land owned by Canada = 6.6% of the world
Percent of people who live in Russia = 2.0% of the world
Percent of land owned by Russia = 11.5% of the world
"Number of American families that own 50% of all the wealth in the USA? 40. Forty families American families own 20% of all the money in the entire world."
Gee, that's strange. There are about 1800 billionaires in the US, with a total net worth of about $2.4 trillion.
That's only about 1% of all the wealth in the world, which is about $240 trillion.
Must be some AWFULLY extended families...
The richest 1% of the world's population now owns 50% of its total wealth, according to a report by Credit Suisse. Worldwide, there are 34 million people who have a U.S. dollar net worth of at least $1 million, or 0.7% of the global adult population, and they account for 45% of global wealth. fortune.com
From your article "America boasts 540 billionaires, more than any other country on the planet and more than all of Europe combined."
It's a lot.
The point is America is not 'destitute' as the naysayers proclaim.
I agree that America as a whole is not destitute. Neither is western Europe, but that isn't my point.
My point is that the figures as you presented them a couple of comments back are nonsense.
In math exams, you don't get much credit for getting the right answer for the wrong reasons, assuming of course that it's a problem in which you have to show your work, as opposed to multiple-choice.
Another point, which might be apropos here, is that the rich liberal politicians who rail against the skewed distribution of wealth did absolutely NOTHING to correct it while they had the political power to do so. As always, the costs of their failed anti-poverty programs were borne by the shrinking middle class, the real purpose of those programs being to buy votes to keep said politicians in power.
This isn't a math test. It is a post about my opinion of how the government should behave,
with love, not war.
That's a fine and noble sentiment, Vic, but if this isn't a math test, you shouldn't try to buttress your opinion with irrelevant or faulty numbers.
Likewise since you said above that their are 1800 billionaires in America and cited an article that says 540.
Yes, indeed it says 540 at one point in the text, but the title of the article is "The Full List Of Every American Billionaire 2016," and then at the end of the text, just before the list begins, it says "Here’s the full list of all American billionaires, who are worth a collective $2.4 trillion:," whereupon it proceeds to list 1810 billionaires.
It seems, then, that the article itself is confused. On further research, it appears that the 540 figure is indeed correct for American billionaires, and the $2.4 trillion total cited by Forbes applies only to Americans, and not the full list of 1810. The result is that American billionaire families own 1% of the world's wealth, a far cry from the 20% you cited.
So at least, Vic, I erred on the failsafe side, and by much less than a factor of 20. I'm happy to correct the record.
You win! Congratulations.
So go ahead and bomb the heck out of every person on the earth that doesn't have your keen understanding of worldly possessions.
Meanwhile I will continue to post pro-jesus opinions.
Well, if seeking the truth of the matter is 'bombing the heck' out of people, then so be it.
I bet you won't be citing Matthew 23 very much in your pro-Jesus opinions.
Luckily I don't believe in the 'truth'. It's all made up.
Sure, maybe we're all just characters in a hyper-dimensional video game.
I don't know what you are, I am a troll.
Fairies have more fun than trolls.
I could be one of those too.
Somehow, I don't think so.
At least not the kind with wings.
So... Really...VicZen...prosperity means nothing to you... How can you post this and understand what ppl are talking about? ;)
Fair enough. I know what prosperity is, I don't choose it for myself and I don't deny it to others.
Given that the U.S. spends $ billions every year on military ventures my preference would be to spend the same money on humanitarian ventures instead.
Does that make sense?
I honestly believe your philosophies are both honest, and frankly present a level of peace that I would love to see in my lifetime. At the same time I see those philosophies not addressing the dark side of human nature at all. Given the current state of this World and the leaders involved, I guarantee your great intentions would be manipulated by others to become a reality that would rival Hell.
It does. Though until utopia is even a glimmer.. The defense of this Sovereign Nation remains a priority.
There was a lot of humanitarian activity during WWII, but it was the military that stopped the war. Should America have helped to stop it or not? It seems that America will be damned if she helps and damned if she minds her own business.
Which makes sense to you?
I say make love not war.
Without the soldiers and military, you may not be around long enough to make love.
Honestly Vic. That's a pretty valid question.
Tldr: but we're definitely not the worlds only super power, not even close. We could do more to help but tbh a lot of times helping is at our own expense. I think a lot of people forget that we have to fix our own country too. America itself has a lot of problems that need to be addressed but don't do to the fact that we're always meddling in everyone else's affairs. That's not to say we shouldn't help the rest of the world but America does a lot more than people give it credit for, it's just behind the scenes most of the time
Here's your vote.
Not necessarily ISIS but the millions of people who are being bombed because they happen to live near ISIS.
If we spent the money on food and shelter for refugees that we are spending on bombing Mosel those people might be able to defend themselves against ISIS.
I do not agree because I don't think it is our job to take care of everyone else. We should leave them to fix the mess they make. Too much bad happens in usa for us to take care of others all the time.
Fuck that, serve the world? Bite me. They've taken enough. Maybe the world should think about giving to us for a change.
1 Peter 4:10
As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another
‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”
1 Peter 4:11
whoever serves, as one who serves to him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
Through love serve one another. For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
Even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve.
“Do you understand what I have done to you? You call me Teacher and Lord, and you are right, for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another's feet.
And whoever would be first among you must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve.
Let each of you look not to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.
“If anyone would be first, he must be last of all and servant of all.”
The greatest among you shall be your servant.
For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.
Give, and it will be given to you. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.”
Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for his deed.
And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.
“But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. To one who strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also, and from one who takes away your cloak do not withhold your tunic either. Give to everyone who begs from you, and from one who takes away your goods do not demand them back.
Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.
For who is the greater, one who reclines at table or one who serves? I am among you as the one who serves.
Jesus looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the offering box, and he saw a poor widow put in two small copper coins. And he said, “Truly, I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all of them. For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.”
1 John 3:17
But if anyone has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God's love abide in him?
Rose from supper. He laid aside his outer garments, and taking a towel, tied it around his waist. Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples' feet and to wipe them with the towel that was wrapped around him.
Whoever despises his neighbor is a sinner, but blessed is he who is generous to the poor.
‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’
For there will never cease to be poor. Therefore I command you, ‘You shall open wide your hand to your brother, to the needy and to the poor.’
We who are strong have an obligation to bear with the failings of the weak, and not to please ourselves.
Let brotherly love continue. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.
“Whoever has two tunics is to share with him who has none, and whoever has food is to do likewise.”
Sell your possessions, and give to the needy.
What did Jesus say about the scribes and the Pharisees in Matthew 23, Vic?
Do I need to remind you again?
Nope. But you will anyways.
I just did, but as last time, I don't think it sunk in.
Not sure why you think this relates.
This time I am pointing out someone whose profile says they are Christian yet has a problem with servitude might have missed the several dozen times the book suggests serving others is noble.
The last time I was arguing that Jesus said not to judge others. You seem to think that just because Jesus himself judged that implies we all should.
Not sure what your point is, I will continue to not judge and to serve others. You are free to do as you please.
The point is that neither Jesus nor his prominent followers such as St. Stephen, St. Paul or St. John the Divine, for example, served everyone or withheld judgment.
So I should be a prick like them.
If you need to use someone else's shitty behavior to justify your own fine, don't drag me into it, my conscience is clear.
Does that mean you would serve Stalin, or Pol Pot, or Kim Jong-un and withhold judgment on them to keep your pristine conscience clear?
Matthew 23: 23-33
23 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.
24 Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.
25 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess.
26 Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.
27 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness.
28 Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.
29 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous,
30 And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets.
31 Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets.
32 Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers.
33 Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?
You see what you see and I do what I do. Who am I to say your vision is a mirage? Only in the end will the truth be known.
You got your bible bookmarked, too? Lol...
Can I have all of your stuff?
I have nothing, what is here is free to whoever wants it.
You should just give it to me, after all, I have suffered.
Help yourself my brother, my larder is open, the door is unlocked all that is here is a gift of nature and free to all in need.
Do you think that Iran gives a fuck?
I do not know. I give a fuck, for I am here to serve my neighbor, to share and to love.