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STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
Reconciling Oneself With the Direction of the US
By Daily Bell Staff - January 19, 2016

"This is personal," Florida Sen. Marco Rubio told an estimated 300 people at the Hilton Garden Inn … It was foreign affairs that really got Rubio going claiming Obama is cutting "deals" with the enemies putting Americans in harms way, he said. "If you take an American as a hostage, Barack Obama will cut a deal with you (for release)." America must stand strong with a larger military, he said, "Weakness invites danger, violence, war." – Nonpareilonline

Dominant Social Theme: America is perpetually at war and should stay that way.

Free-Market Analysis: GOP warmongering is increasingly a problem from a civil society standpoint. With Ron Paul out of the race and officially retired, lofting the banner of military non-interference abroad fell to his son, Rand Paul.

Rand has done his best, though he has differences with his father and his stance on non-intervention is somewhat more nuanced. But past Paul, the dialogue barely exists.

We can see in the excerpt above that Rubio is not satisfied with the US's $600 billion per year Pentagon budget. He wants additional funds, citing the potential for US "weakness."

More:

As a recruitment tool, ISIS is posing members as refugees seeking entry here, Rubio said. Under his direction, no refugee will enter without 100 percent certainty of that person's identity and peaceful intention.

He also added Clinton should be disqualified as commander-in-chief for her inability to handled classified information and for lying to the families of the victims of the Benghazi attacks.

As we can see, when it comes to foreign policy, Rubio is not one to see shades of gray. He values strength and expects the "commander in chief" not to waver when confronting world challenges.

Rubio's language in this regard is somewhat bellicose, though he doesn't seem substantially different than most of the GOP candidates with the exception of Rand. It also seems a tad illogical. Since the US spends more on weapons than any other country – hundreds of billions – it is difficult to understand why Rubio believes the US is in danger of becoming weak.

Someone who might provide answers is David Stockman who recently penned an article entitled, "The Warmonger's Brawl – How the GOP Is Deserting Free Markets, Sound Money and Fiscal Rectitude."

An excerpt:

In their lust for war, the GOP candidates to a man forgot why the Republican party even exists. In remonstrating noisily for even more of Washington's imperial overreach abroad, rather than attacking its bloated and intrusive aspect at home, they forced the American people to abandon any hope for the restoration of fiscal rectitude, sound money and free markets.

… let's cut to the chase. You can't let these clowns off the hook—and Senator Rubio and Governor Christie are far the worst—on the grounds that this is just election time grandstanding.

To the contrary, GOP politicians have become so steeped in defense pork barrel mendacity and the shrill Islamophobia rampant in Imperial Washington that they have become mindless megaphones for the Warfare State.

Stockman, who served in the upper reaches of the Reagan White House surely knows what he is talking about. The key to understanding Rubio's hawkishness lies in the last paragraph, just excerpted. It's "pork barrel mendacity," a rhetorical device that extracts hundreds of billions a year from the American taxpayer.

There is simply no getting around it. If you take a rhetorical position decrying "pork barrel spending," you'll alienate vast swaths of important DC constituencies. This will probably prove terminal for your hopes to become president. It might even kill your career altogether. In extreme cases it might kill YOU.

With so much money, prestige and power at stake, those at the top do not look kindly to challenges. At the top it's an extremely tough racket. These people deal in murder for hire and fortunes are amassed from shedding the blood of innocents. That may sound harsh, but the Pentagon expects civilian casualties when it goes to war and has elaborate methodologies in place for purposes of damage control.

Broadly speaking, the warfare-welfare state is the engine powering modern America. It wasn't always that way but the US is a republic in name only these days. This warfare-welfare engine is just what powered the Roman Empire and others besides. No difference. We have arrived at the historical status quo.

In fairness to Stockman and despite the intimations of the title of his article, he doesn't hold out much hope that things are going to change.

At the end of the article, he asks: "Will any GOP administration that needs to allocate massive new resources to the bloated $600 billion defense budget we already have in order to carry out their strenuous interventionist objectives abroad be able to repeal Obamacare, balance the budget, reform and curtail the big entitlements or bring the Fed to heel? Not in this lifetime."

Case closed. We like to think that historical trends can be reversed but, unfortunately, they only flow one way to a logical conclusion. Sooner or later the US will be bankrupt in every sense of the word, its citizens denuded, its resources spent to the nub.

Those who live in the US can do little about this state of affairs. Politics certainly doesn't offer any hope. Citizens elect the man or woman whose rhetoric is the most sensible. But Leviathan is a mighty mass, anchored in the very fibers of human psychology. There is no way even for the most committed and eloquent politician to affect its course.

This is why we regularly caution that one needs to look to one's personal "human action" to make a difference in this society and at this time. Do what you can every day to protect your prosperity, your pocketbook and your family. Don't expect a miraculous reversal of the negative trends affecting the US's global posture or its domestic politics.

After Thoughts

Visualize the US as a train and understand it is moving down the tracks in only one direction. Your choice is to ride it to its ruinous destination or to get off as soon as you can. We recommend the latter.

Posted in STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
  • Bruce C.

    The concept that “a strong offense is the best defense” still rings true to me, but it does depend upon all “enemies” or opponents acting rationally, and that’s not always the case. However, the bigger, deeper problem with maintaining a “standing army” is that once created it naturally wants to be used and grow. That’s a really interesting political problem. The military basically needs to be used to survive, and like all organizations it will do whatever it can to do that, including the fomentation of conflicts through subversive activities to create the need for itself. The military presence in foreign countries is often criticized at this site, but one purpose it may fulfill – though perhaps inadvertently – is to keep the military busy and at the same time discourage conflicts abroad. Ironically, if all those bases were closed as Ron Paul suggested there might be more problems created. There needs to be a way to use the military that satisfies its need for activity and growth but not necessarily involve warfare.

    That, or not have a military at all, and that leads to the great line in this piece regarding “Leviathan” being “anchored in the very fibers of human psychology.” As long as the citizenry believes that “we” need a military then we’re going to have one, along with all the costs that that entails.

    • disqussted999

      Bruce, I read what you say, but you use so many terms and phrases without definition or explanation (for instance, “need a military”–what exactly does that mean to you/us–for what?…or “needs to be used”–used how exactly, for offense or defense, for aid and assistance?…and “discourage conflicts”–really, what kind of conflict does it discourage, as simply its presence CAUSES conflict, first mentally/emotionally/psychologically, then physically?,…etc), that it makes what you say hard to comment upon.

      But I do want to comment on your opening line that “a strong offense is the best defense” sounds somehow right to you. Really? Then define “offense.” If we’re talking sports, perhaps that’s true in many cases. However, of course, there is a HUGE difference between military offense and sports offense. In sports, good offense does not, almost ever, KILL ANYBODY!! In military, it almost always DOES. So really, this is a phrase/meme used by warmongers to rally the sheeple of a deeply sports-minded, win-at-all-costs, violent-movie&videogame-soaked country(ies) around their next “tactical” incursion or assassinations (offensive moves where almost certainly people will die, including the innocent, to of course make the place where they are located more “safe for democracy”…except, of course, for those unfortunates who will not survive the incursion to “enjoy” their new found “democratic” “freedoms”–like the military curfews and regulations and frequent interrogations and unlawful sequestrations–if you for instance frown at or do not show obsequiousness to the military personnel there for your “benefit”–so generously offered them by their friendly military overlords who’ve moved into their city/neighborhood). Yes, I agree that this country, or more accurately those who run this country and use its military for its own pecuniary and powermongering benefit, sees this offense, this aggression, as “sport.” I hope you and most Americans do not.

      • esqualido

        They don’t see it as “sport,” they see it as profits. Lenin said a capitalist will sell him the rope to hang you with, but with these Lapel-Pin-Patriot-Merchants-of Death, they will overcharge you so much for “defense” spending that you will feel like hanging yourself. Perpetual war, always undeclared (otherwise defense contractors profits would be limited), military forces in over 100 countries, always with hideous references to spreading democracy, where an enlightened democracy, people would demand the funding be directed to domestic needs: this is what got Obama elected, yet he increased military spending, and in the process vastly increased the national debt. And Rand Paul was tarred as an “isolationist” for wanting to cut back and balance the budget. And now there is just one candidate , an elderly man, willing to take a stand against the vast power of the Hollywood-MSM-Military-Industrial-Complex. There is something of Mars eating his own children in all of this.

        • Bruce C.

          I really don’t like the MIC, and I totally agree that US citizens are practically blackmailed by it, but I also agree with the saying, “If you think education is expensive try ignorance.” I seriously wonder what would happen if the US somehow suddenly shut down its military. Would peace reign in great relief or would chaos ensue and civilization REALLY go down the tube?

          • esqualido

            When you consider how far the Norwegians have evolved from the Norseman Business Model of 500 B.C. (looting, rape and enslavement of Europe), you begin to understand that America can remain great and prosper without feeding unborn generations into the maw of war. We could pull troops out of 50 countries, massively downsize the bloated military and still be quite capable of defending ourselves. But as in The Seven Samurai, the question is how do peace-loving people who are not natural killers stand up to filthy rich warmongers armed to the teeth? Maybe the old guy can pull it off after all, it is hard to even look at the rest.

          • Bruce C.

            ‘the question is how do peace-loving people with no military stand up to filthy rich war mongers armed to the teeth?’

            Exactly. One answer is for the peaceniks to “buy a gun” and be willing and able to use it. I’m not saying that’s the only way but it seems to be the only way at this time.

          • apberusdisvet

            We have constant chaos now, courtesy of the MANUFACTURED wars to feed the political beast, and the banking cabal that has been on both sides of every war since the 1600s. Our 100s of overseas bases serve to encircle faux enemies and distribute drugs for the subsidizing of black ops. Our 3 branches of government are all bought and paid for. We have 2 choices; kneel and be enslaved or stand and push back.

          • Bruce C.

            I don’t agree that we have constant chaos now. As I’ve said before, if I didn’t watch the news or read newspapers I would be blissfully unaware of most of what is considered to be “chaos” in the world. In fact, I wonder if it is you who are deceived, buying into propaganda that everything is so dire. THAT is what feeds “the machine.”

            Consider ‘the poor Syrian refugees fleeing their war torn country’. Have you seen those people? They look like tourists. It’s a joke.

            So, what do you mean by “stand and push back”?

        • Steven Hotho

          When the welfare statists are elected, they never decrease the warfare budgets. And when the warfare statists are elected they never decrease the welfare budgets.

      • Bruce C.

        I think a lot of this discussion, and the points you raise, depends upon one’s beliefs or assumptions about the “rest of the world.” To some (maybe many and evidently to you in particular) foreign governments are benign and it is the US that incites/”causes” resentments and conflicts. That may be true or it may not. It seems to me however, that even more importantly than military prowess is the attitude of the President. Evidence seems pretty clear that when a US President is decisive and convinces foreign governments that he/she is willing to use military force then the world seems a lot more peaceful, as ironic as that may seem. That certainly seems to be the case with Obama.

        One ideal – though I’m willing to concede that it’s BS – is that having a strong “defense” and the willingness to use it will actually result in less violence.

        • disqussted999

          You say, and I totally disagree, “Evidence seems pretty clear”…unless of course your “source” of this “evidence” is the Ministry of Truth of the West, and especially of the US. The MSM of the US has become simply the Propaganda arm of TPTB. And even when we hear/see real evidence, ie, real facts, from the Western MSM, they are presented and interpreted through distorted lenses, as in the results of our drone strikes, just as one example: “We got another bad guy. Hurray for us!! Clap your patriotic hands and give a good ‘ol Marine Hooah!…and of course give us more money to keep doing it and we’ll keep you safe (while making billionaires and trillionaires of the arms dealers and the industry that creates them and the banksters that bankroll them, of course, and setting up puppet govts that will go along with our energy companies’ pipeline plans, etc)” And this, even though our military complex already receives and spends more than the next 11 largest countries combined (and that’s just the part we know and are told about…that doesn’t include all the dark monies coming from the dark ops side, as in, for example, Don’t sell drugs…the govt doesn’t like competition).

          Who was it determined this person who was just blown to smithereens from a chair in a cubicle by a guy (who’s simply following orders from someone else following orders from eventually someone with financial and political interests in eliminating this person) 1000s of miles away was a bad guy?…a terrorist?…worthy of being found guilty and executed without a trial?… on foreign soil!?? Bullies can keep a sort of peace–their own, for a while–b/c they’ve destroyed the peace of someone else. The Western PTB are bullies…we have met the enemy, and it is us. Empires always end up that way…and those seemingly benefiting from their bullying are generally always the last to see and believe. But in the end, they too are bullied, as the empire crumbles and desperately tries to claw from its own whatever it can to maintain itself.

          • Bruce C.

            Look, we may both get to see the US weakened and falter and its military defunded and then see how things go after that. Frankly I hope you’re right and it becomes clear to all that the US/MIC is/was the sole instigator, judge and jury of all skirmishes in the world and will be good riddance. Maybe once the US bully is taken out everything will be great.

            I don’t disagree that the MIC is a problem – a leach and a bully – but I also think the US is the last bastion of freedom in the world. Most people who travel are often effusive in their renewed appreciation for the US when they return. If the US goes down then there won’t be anywhere else in the world that has the same or better philosophical foundations. To me that’s scary and will mark the decline and probably extinction of human civilization on this planet.

          • disqussted999

            Once again, where to begin?

            – the US weakened and falter–define “the US” for us–is it the MIC?, or WeThePeople (WTP)? The country that WTP think it is or was has already been weakened from within by corruption, by allowing a two-tiered system whereby WTP live under one set of rules and the “elite” live above-the-law as criminals in high places–eg, TBTF banksters and their bankster overlords who control the govt (just as Rothschild, aka Bauer, and his sons claimed they would)

            -military defunded–as in receive “0” monies…will never happen. You skipped right over the little detail of how much funding they have. The debates are never about actual defunding (again, not counting all the secret and untouchable funds going to the MIC), but about a decrease in the INCREASE of funding. Go find the details and you can and might understand better.

            -all skirmishes–who ever said “all”…you’re making an argument ad absurdum but not dealing with the fact that “most” is bad enough. And yes, MOST, often through psy-ops and financial/economic pressure. Read “confessions of an economic hitman.”

            -Maybe once the US bully is taken out everything will be great–this is the argument given the American (Western) people for just about every incursion of every type in the world by our MIC: just take out x-badman/x-badgroup/x-govt/x-ruler and everything will be just great. Everything will NEVER be just great in this world. But bullying never breeds anything better except in the most miniscule timeframe. Who said “taken out?”…just stop!!!…as Ron Paul preached for decades. Use the monies at home. Nothing wrong with defending the homeland, but “good offense is the best defense” is a lie of the MIC, as I’ve already claimed. It simply breeds more conflicts, which is exactly what the MIC wants–the owners/controllers of the MIC detest peace..bad for profits and for engineering geopolitical changes…bad for extending control over resources and markets.

            -Your entire last paragraph–yes, you are brainwashed, as are the sheeple, the majority of Americans. And b/c many people in the world that want to come to the USSA only hear and read the propaganda of the Western MSM, they believe the lies, too. This country has become by many laws and regulations (and destruction or disregard of others) a police state. The police state simply has not been put fully into action yet. It’s just not fully recognizable by most, yet, and unfortunately what is visible to all of this encroaching police state is overlooked by the majority simply b/c they don’t want to see or believe it…the frog in the pan of slowly boiling water analogy (not saying that the frog staying there part is actually true, but you understand the analogy). Nothing new…same with all empires.

            “Philosophical foundations” are great when they determine the laws and the execution of the laws. But those philosophical foundations have long ago been tossed out by those empowered with enforcing and executing the laws. They are used to keep the sheeple in line and to create great propaganda slogans and to get young men and women to sign up for “patriotic’ duty…to save those foundations, when the truth has nothing to do with saving them, but saving the bottom lines of huge multinational organizations/corporations (many within the protected borders of the MIC) and their shareholders. Those who run this country now look at those foundations as a joke. They have long ago put themselves above the laws of the land.

          • Bruce C.

            I mean the “US” that is referred to in the title of this piece (“Reconciling Oneself to the Direction of the US”).

            Why not ask the DB staff what they mean by “the US”?

            You ask some good questions and I don’t claim to know the answers to all of them. I think much of that is the basis of the current Presidential election. I think a lot of people are angry and frustrated and confused and they want some things to stop, some to change course, and some things to be resurrected. People are struggling to understand what the fundamental issues and problems are. (Rhetorically) what is a symptom and what is a cause?

            I think that’s the main reason Trump has so much appeal. He at least says he wants to make America great again and people like that message. If he can convince enough people that he knows what needs to be done and can actually make those changes he’ll win (IMO).

            Maybe you can ask Trump what he means by “America” too. His answer could be very revealing. Seriously.

          • disqussted999

            Bruce, just saw and read this article by Fred Reed that you might find interesting–January 23, 2016:

            Fingernail sketch of our wonderful MIC/Pentagon war machine now…changing with the times and keeping the world safe for democracy…er, military contractors–

            Emancipation of Military: Containing the Citizenry
            https://www.lewrockwell.com/2016/01/fred-reed/pentagon-achieves-ancient-aim/

          • Bruce C.

            I read the article. Thanks.

            I think most people know a lot of that but the problem is what to do about it.

            Even without a draft and a nosy press and drones most Americans are still opposed to any more military action by the US. They’re not neutral about it, and it is causing a lot of frustration about ISIS. On the one hand they might support overwhelming force to knock it out but they also don’t want things to escalate or for any American troops to die over there. That, and it still seems unclear what ISIS really is. The bottom line is most people understand the threat of the MIC as Eisenhower warned about. Again, the problem is what to do about it.

          • disqussted999

            And who do you think ISIS is?…or maybe a better question is where do you think it came from? The problem is that ISIS, as al-queda before it (et al), are frankensteins of our own CIA/ESF/dark-ops creation. ..founded, funded, trained by “us” (MIC and its dark-ops division). So…create a monster…send the monster to do its job–create conflicts…MIC and banksters make money…wreak havoc in foreign sovereign countries…make deals / take down duly elected officials / set up puppet states who will make more deals for your MIC compadres…make more money and clear the geopolitical path to make still more money…go to war against the frankenmonster you created (of course the Ministry of Truth has to leave out the little dirty detail that the monster is of “our” own creating)…make more money…rinse&repeat.

            For it to end (as in what to do about it), the sheeple people have to at least know what’s going on, en masse. But they won’t if their source for info is the MSM of the West. At least we have the net and sites like this to hopefully educate some. But the problem with most westerners, esp. Americans, is that they think they already know, b/c they’ve watched the 6PM news and don’t want to be confused with the facts…after all, this is aMERica!! I call it “arrogant ignorance.” Just look at 911 for example…NOONE can review the evidence, for example coming from just the architects and engineers group that has posted its evidence showing absolute proof of controlled demolition with massive numbers of explosions, etc, for more than even an hour or so, and believe at all the official lie. Yet many do, many of whom have never stopped to look at or read the evidence…they’ve already seen “All [I] need to see” on MSM.

          • Bruce C.

            I know about the “goon squad” theory for ISIS. Whatever its origin, the political question is is it “just” an extremist group or is it the head of a Hydra? The concern I and others have is whether or not they are a proxy for an ideology and not just a group of militants. If they’re just militants then overwhelming force could eliminate them, and the fact that they may be a goon squad for the Deep State is all the more reason to take them out. Not that that’s an advanced approach but it does work pretty well at least in the medium term. However, if they represent an ideology then engaging in the ME will prove again to be a graveyard for an empire.

            I hope your right that just awareness en masse is enough to change things. It certainly can’t hurt. Actually I think it requires both political pressure from the public and certain people within the government who will act internally along the same lines. Some say no political solution is possible at this point, that “Washington” will-not/can-not fix itself at this point, the Republic is dead, etc. Maybe so, but I think it’s worth trying. So far I think a Trump Presidency offers the hope and possibility of insiders acting internally. I would expect him to appoint other “outsiders” who will act “selflessly” for the good of the country as they see it. That may be laughable to some. Maybe he won’t get elected and maybe he won’t or can’t do anything, but if he can’t then nobody running will be able to (or even try to) either. IMO.

          • disqussted999

            One other good article for you to peruse…just came out:

            False Flags Are Just a Conspiracy Theor … Admitted Fact
            Posted on February 2, 2016 by WashingtonsBlog

            Presidents, Prime Ministers, Congressmen, Generals, Spooks, Soldiers and Police ADMIT to False Flag Terror
            http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2016/02/58-admitted-false-flag-attacks.html

            And this doesn’t even begin to cover all of them. The biggest are left out, IMO, b/c the writer has determined to include only those where this is publically documented confession, an admitting of conspiracy and intent to deceive. So you won’t find the Pearl Harbor attack, for instance, nor 911 (overtly, though the author is clear in his opinion without stating it), though there is no doubt for anyone who has investigated either, that they were setups, false flag attacks, etc.

    • Injun Holbrook

      Bruce C.
      Let’s dance around the mulberry bush at the intersection of Haight-Ashbury. Oh how we wish for the perfect world. This is simply naive and dangerous. You have hit it right on the head! This is a political problem, not a military problem. It’s easier to blame the military rather than ourselves for the management of it.

      • Steven Hotho

        As the article indicates, the “problem” is much deeper than political or social, but goes to the very core of human nature which oscillates between fear and greed.

  • autonomous

    Were Hegel alive today, he would describe The U.S. under the neocons as he described Rome, “The Romans were as essentially different from the Greeks in respect to their public games. In these the Romans were, properly speaking, only spectators. The mimetic and theatrical
    representation, the dancing, foot-racing and wrestling, they left to manumitted slaves, gladiators, or criminals condemned to death. Nero’s deepest degradation was his appearing on a public stage as a singer, lyrist and combatant. As the Romans were only spectators, these diversions were something foreign to them; they did not enter into them with their whole souls. With increasing luxury the taste for the baiting of beasts and men became particularly keen.” The Philosophy of History, G.W.F. Hegel, p 312.
    He would have likened the president’s and the aspirants’ preening for the television cameras to Nero’s on-stage antics, and American voters’ manic pressing of Like or Dislike buttons to besotted Roman spectators. He would have predicted America’s fall sooner than later. He would have been a fan of The Daily Bell.

    • http://www.thedailybell.com/ The Daily Bell

      Thanks, high praise.

  • Praetor

    Weakness, Rubio looks like a punk and is a punk! You only have to look at the aircraft carrier count, to see who is weak.

    globalfirepower.com

  • Steven Hotho

    I agree with your article in its entirety, but simply don’t believe it’s possible to escape the worldwide consequences to come; well, that actually are already here. Yes, we should look to ourselves for sustenance in this world, but focus, not just on ourselves, but try to help as many as possible in our neighborhoods and communities. It’s from those efforts that societies will rebuild and rebuild they will unless its time for the age to end.

    • http://www.thedailybell.com/ The Daily Bell

      We agree with you and have said so numerous times.

  • Injun Holbrook

    To perhaps expand on Bruce C.’s thoughts. “That’s a really interesting political problem.”

    Bruce C. your pondering is correct. It not only is a political question but a highly social one that has devastating consequences especially on the social and behavior economic side of the coin. Since the political debate of the military draft (Vietnam era) and the subsequent demand that the draft be ended, we have suffered considerable social and economic change directly linked to that demand. Most of which has led to the degradation of social and economic being of the lower economic class and now having expanded to the middle class.

    As the world stage changes so does the military complex and so does our argument. It changes the political atmosphere of almost every social and economic debate. Each with their own agenda. In the end we have no one to blame but for ourselves. We are political animals who thrive on political debates whose ultimate goal is each one’s own agenda. Not for the collective society. There is much more to the military complex than first glance. But the complexity of the military complex is simply ourselves.

  • rahrog

    Ending the empire doesn’t mean USA won’t have a military or be able to defend itself. The enemies of “America” are the bankster/gangsters of NYC/DC.
    We are going to crash, as planned by the ruling class, no matter what USA’s foreign policy is perceived to be.

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