How the GOP Should Respond to Egypt

January 28th, 2011 at 5:17 pm | 33 Comments |

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The crisis in Egypt gives the Republican Party a new opportunity to reiterate its commitment to President George W. Bush’s “Freedom Agenda,” which championed liberal democracy as the crucial and necessary alternative to repression and radicalism.

There’s only one problem: a strong libertarian undertow, which is at the heart of the Tea Party movement, doesn’t really believe in the Freedom Agenda.

Libertarian leaders such as Grover Norquist, in fact, want America to come home and to tend to its own business. (Norquist has called for a “conversation” amongst conservatives about the costs and benefits of American involvement in Afghanistan.)

Rand Paul, likewise, wants to end all foreign aid, including the billions of dollars that we give annually to Israel and Egypt. Ditto the Republican Study Committee, which, according to Dave Weigel, has called for zeroing out the entire USAID budget.

Now, I don’t like foreign aid any more than the next conservative: Most foreign aid probably is economically wasteful and counterproductive. But the point of foreign aid is not economics; it is geopolitics: It is intended to shape a recipient country’s behavior and, quite literally, buy American influence. And it does just that.

The last thing we should do then is to eliminate all foreign aid out of a myopic and shortsighted desire to save money and reduce the deficit. Such an idea is penny wise and pound foolish; and it will undermine and harm vital U.S. national security interests.

At least now, in large part because of our aid to that country, we can shape and influence Egyptian public policy and behavior. Just imagine if we lacked this carrot how much less influence we would have there.

But libertarians like Norquist and Paul don’t see this. They don’t see the bigger strategic picture because they’re neo-isolationists who, like their far-left counterparts, want America to come home.

They want the American military to withdraw from the world. They don’t realize that America’s domestic prosperity is inextricably linked to our international military commitments and forward-leaning presence.

More authentic conservatives know better. George W. Bush certainly knew better, even if he was an imperfect president who fell short in other key respects (such as reining in domestic discretionary spending).

Today’s new Republican congressmen and senators can learn from our 43rd president, who, despite his mistakes, nonetheless stood squarely and forthrightly on the side of freedom and opportunity worldwide.

Indeed, the idea that liberal democracy is a Western value only is “a condescending form of moral relativism,” Bush told a conference of Middle Eastern elites in El Sheikh, Egypt, in May 2008. “The truth is that freedom is a universal right — the Almighty’s gift to every man, woman and child on the face of the earth.”

This doesn’t mean that the United States should impose liberal democracy at the point of a gun everywhere around the globe. That, obviously, would be unjust, reckless and imprudent.

However, it does mean that we should clearly, forthrightly and unequivocally support liberal democracy worldwide — and that no one should ever doubt where we stand.

The United States stands firmly and proudly on the side of liberty. And we will use all means of our national power — including foreign aid and military assistance — to ensure the survival and success of liberty worldwide.

Of course, this doesn’t accord with the new libertarian ethos of the modern Republican Party and Tea Party movements. It is, instead, a profoundly conservative idea championed by such “old-school” Republicans as Ronald Reagan.

But it is an idea that corresponds with our longstanding national political tradition and historic foreign policy. And is that idea which is being sorely tested right now on the streets of Egypt — a country whose destiny is now inextricably linked to our own.

John Guardiano blogs at www.ResoluteCon.Com, and you can follow him on Twitter: @JohnRGuardiano.


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33 Comments so far ↓

  • hormelmeatco

    Unfortunately, Mr. Guardiano, foreign aid to Egypt is precisely the reason the United States is NOT “stand[ing] firmly and proudly on the side of liberty” with respect to Egypt and its government.

  • jakester

    But the foreign aid can be used as a lever.
    The trouble is that democracy in the Arab world usually means shucking off some two bit tinpot or oligarch in favor for even more contemptible and less humane Islamicists ala Iran

  • lessadoabouteverything

    John, John, John, I simply don’t understand this: The crisis in Egypt gives the Republican Party a new opportunity

    How about “gives America a new opportunity” and this notion that somehow only Republicans are freedom loving is silly. Write it to bring in the maximum amount of supporters, yes quote Bush, but quote Clinton or Kennedy or Truman too. I am a Liberal Internationalist who supported the war in Iraq for the reasons that Tony Blair laid out (Hussein was a genocidal monster who was a cancer on the Middle east and was going to pass down his odious regime to his insane progeny)

    Our foreign aid to Egypt has kept the peace between Israel and Egypt for over a generation, it has also helped prevent an Islamic style regime from taking root in the home of the Suez canal. Even if Mubarak is overthrown the Egyptian people are not going to want to replace one repression with an even worse one, they know what has happened in Iran.

    As to the libertarians, let them align themselves with the pacifists of the far left. On this issue, the importance of foreign aid as a way to influence policy, the clear majority of the leadership of both parties understands this. Let Rand and Ron Paul squawk on the tube. They, like most Libertarians, are simple minded. There is no way in hell the US, Israel, etc. are going to let the Suez Canal be compromised and for the cost of a few billion in foreign aid we can achieve this.

  • John Guardiano

    lessadoabouteverything,

    I never said “only Republicans are freedom loving.”

    And yes, the crisis is an opportunity for all Americans, not just Republicans. That’s true. So what? The point of my post is specifically the GOP.

    Maybe you didn’t notice, but this website is “dedicated to the modernization and renewal of the Republican party and the conservative movement.”
    http://bit.ly/hLH27C

    Regards,
    John

  • think4yourself

    Hi JG,

    Thanks for the article. As someone not a Tea Partier but interested in cutting spending I’m listening to Rand Paul regarding eliminating all foreign aid. But I’m also willing to listen to your argument.

    As a business person, I understand the principle of investment. Foreign aid is an investment to achieve what we want (stable gov’ts that will respect our values and do business with us), however, my question is – does it really work? If you look at the billions (trillions?) of dollars we have invested in foreign aid, has it really added to the security of a region such as the Middle East? Has it opened, stabilised or created new markets for us? Has it led to us not having to use military in the region? Or has it become like farm subsidies – once started, never stopped and if we give a billion to Israel, then we better give a billion to Egypt? If we had not given those billions in aid, would the region look any different than it does today?

    Conservatives believe in self-determination and standing on your own two feet (end welfare, etc.), why shouldn’t we announce to our friends, “it’s time to stand on your own two feet. We’ll find ways to support your steps to be self-empowered, but if we’re friends only because we give you money, then we’re not really friends – we’re your john (honestly, no disrespect intended JG).”

  • Churl

    So exactly how is any amount of money we spend supposed to

    (1) Help the freedom-inclined Egyptians suddenly to swap centuries of tyranny, dictatorship, and kleptocracy for a functioning democratic government, and

    (2) Keep the Muslim Brotherhood and allied fanatics from imposing a rabid theocracy?

    And how much should we spend and on what should we spend it?

    Details please.

    Also remember that street riots against repressive governments don’t necessarily lead to peaceful, benevolent governments. The formation of Pakistan and the rise to power of Khomeini and his mullahs are cautions against optimism.

  • talkradiosucks.com

    There’s only one problem: a strong libertarian undertow, which is at the heart of the Tea Party movement, doesn’t really believe in the Freedom Agenda.

    The Tea Party is not libertarian in nature. It is a standard far-right conservative movement with a very small number of libertarian elements, which has coopted the “libertarian” label for political reasons. Happy to provide data and examples to prove the point.

    Rand Paul is the exception to the rule. He’s a libertarian; the Tea Party on the whole is not.

    Now, I don’t like foreign aid any more than the next conservative: Most foreign aid probably is economically wasteful and counterproductive. But the point of foreign aid is not economics; it is geopolitics: It is intended to shape a recipient country’s behavior and, quite literally, buy American influence. And it does just that.

    You do realize how this paragraph contradicts itself?

    Come on, John. Conservatives *love* foreign aid. Especially to Israel. And they love to use it to control and manipulate other countries as well, just as you are saying here.

    Or put another way, when have conservatives ever substantially cut foreign aid?

    How much “influence” do we get for the bbbbbbillions we send to Israel every year? They cash the checks and do whatever the hell they want, at least of late.

    The last thing we should do then is to eliminate all foreign aid out of a myopic and shortsighted desire to save money and reduce the deficit.

    Actually, it’s not myopic at all. It’s consistent with libertarian ideals, and Rand Paul — unlike most of the frauds on the right — really does walk the talk.

    At least now, in large part because of our aid to that country, we can shape and influence Egyptian public policy and behavior. Just imagine if we lacked this carrot how much less influence we would have there.

    This is a bit silly. Everyone knows we don’t send billions of dollars to Egypt to “shape and influence Egyptian policy and behavior.” It’s simply a bribe so they leave Israel alone.

    If you do want to claim we have “influence” there, then what exactly have we done with it? Not much that I can see, except again, paying them off for Israel.

    How do we respond to critics who claim that America is hated in Muslim countries because they prop up Western-friendly dictators when people like yourself not only admit it, but are proud of it?

    But libertarians like Norquist and Paul don’t see this. They don’t see the bigger strategic picture because they’re neo-isolationists who, like their far-left counterparts, want America to come home.

    You know who else was an “isolationist”? George Washington.

    This country would be far better off now if we had been “isolationist” when it came to most of the wars we’ve been involved in over the last 50 years. And probably also when it comes to our tinkering with other countries.

    They want the American military to withdraw from the world. They don’t realize that America’s domestic prosperity is inextricably linked to our international military commitments and forward-leaning presence.

    This is hand-waving. How exactly is our “domestic prosperity” being enhanced by sending billions of dollars to Middle East dictators? Be specific.

    As for our “forward-leaning presence”, that’s just a euphemism for the American military empire, which you are already on record as supporting. Again here, where is the justification? What actual return are we getting for spending dozens, if not hundreds of billions of dollars every year, and having our soldiers in harm’s way, propping up foreign governments — some of them as despotic as leaders we claim to be enemies?

    More authentic conservatives know better. George W. Bush certainly knew better, even if he was an imperfect president who fell short in other key respects (such as reining in domestic discretionary spending).

    You’re giving credit for foreign policy expertise and understanding to a fool who started a completely unnecessary war under false pretenses, against a weak enemy, which killed thousands of our troops for no reason, massively increased our national debt, and strengthened the one regime in the area that actually is a threat?

    Um. I don’t even know how to respond to that.

    Today’s new Republican congressmen and senators can learn from our 43rd president, who, despite his mistakes, nonetheless stood squarely and forthrightly on the side of freedom and opportunity worldwide.

    Your hero-worship of the most clueless, corrupt, dishonest, incompetent president in American history is beyond comprehension.

    What’s worse is that the foreign aid and “influence” you are arguing in favor of is in many, if not most cases, used for the exact opposite of freedom. Now with Egypt erupting, we hear people on the right saying that we should prop up the Mubarak regime to maintain our “influence”, the Egyptian people be damned. Some are even calling for the US to send troops to crush the protestors!

    This is what “freedom” really is to the war-mongering right: the “freedom” to do what the American empire tells you to do.

    This doesn’t mean that the United States should impose liberal democracy at the point of a gun everywhere around the globe. That, obviously, would be unjust, reckless and imprudent.

    This a handful of paragraphs after you praised the man who used this as a cornerstone of his foreign policy, and less than a week after you posted another article defending endless continuation of these exact tactics in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    I’m sorry, but you simply don’t make sense.

    The United States stands firmly and proudly on the side of liberty. And we will use all means of our national power — including foreign aid and military assistance — to ensure the survival and success of liberty worldwide.

    Give me a break. The American right doesn’t give a fig about “liberty worldwide”. They care about American colonial interests first, and Israel second, and everything else is way, way down the list.

  • JimBob

    Purge the NeoCons. Start with Guardiano !

    http://articles.latimes.com/2009/nov/04/opinion/oe-crane4

  • lessadoabouteverything

    John, I know that the website is dedicated to the GOP but some issues have to be above the partisan divide, National Security is one of them. I supported the Iraq war as a Democrat because I believed it was right and I take it you did as well, not because it would have been a benefit for the Republican party. If it had been a great success from the start I am sure it would have benefitted the Republicans, but that is truly beside the point for me. National Security comes first, who ever can deliver it gets my vote. If Republicans can prove they can do it they will win my vote, I will satisfy myself with a Democratic mayor and Governor.
    “And yes, the crisis is an opportunity for all Americans, not just Republicans. That’s true. So what?”
    I am not arguing your suggestions of what the Republican leadership should do to the Libertarians, but I am arguing against your belief that the Republicans alone can do anything, of course they need to work with National Security minded Democrats to isolate the pacifists and Libertarians.
    I don’t see how you can do this by using the language you have used.

    This site is “dedicated to the modernization and renewal of the Republican party and the conservative movement.” But that can never happen unless you address yourself to swing voters such as myself. I voted for Reagan, I voted for Bush the elder because of National Security issues.
    Without Reagan Democrats the Republican party is nothing.

    I will state that I truly liked this part: However, it does mean that we should clearly, forthrightly and unequivocally support liberal democracy worldwide — and that no one should ever doubt where we stand. (this is non partisan and 100% correct)

    The United States stands firmly and proudly on the side of liberty. And we will use all means of our national power — including foreign aid and military assistance — to ensure the survival and success of liberty worldwide. (again, exactly the thing I support)

    Of course, this doesn’t accord with the new libertarian ethos of the modern Republican Party and Tea Party movements. It is, instead, a profoundly conservative idea championed by such “old-school” Republicans as Ronald Reagan. (perfectly fine since you are illustrating where the Republicans have gone off the rails)

    But it is an idea that corresponds with our longstanding national political tradition and historic foreign policy. And is that idea which is being sorely tested right now on the streets of Egypt — a country whose destiny is now inextricably linked to our own.

    Again, fine finish. Maybe I am being a bit harsh since I just reread the article, but I much prefer this issue to be non partisan. You looked for an opportunity for Republicans, I looked for an opportunity for America. What you wrote in the last paragraph illustrated what I think should have been your real focus, after that if you want to get into the weeds by all means do so. But you and I are on the same side on this. On National Security you take all the friends you can get. As you are aware soldiers in Arlington are not buried according to Political party.

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  • JimBob

    “The United States stands firmly and proudly on the side of liberty. And we will use all means of our national power — including foreign aid and military assistance — to ensure the survival and success of liberty worldwide.

    Of course, this doesn’t accord with the new libertarian ethos of the modern Republican Party and Tea Party movements. It is, instead, a profoundly conservative idea championed by such “old-school” Republicans as Ronald Reagan.”

    Reagan’s wisdom on the Middle East: Leave

    http://orangepunch.ocregister.com/2006/07/21/reagans-wisdom-on-the-middle-east-leave/619/

  • baw1064

    To put it in strictly economic terms, I would say that our return on investment on the $1.3 billion/year has been poor. What tangible benefits has our investment procured?

  • rockstar

    From what I understand, many of the Egyptian people support the Muslim Brotherhood, and would vote for them given the chance.

    So, which principles should the GOP, or the US, promote?

  • Mercer

    “Bush’s “Freedom Agenda,” which championed liberal democracy ”

    Bush did not champion democracy when Hamas won an election.

    ” It is intended to shape a recipient country’s behavior and, quite literally, buy American influence.”

    How does that work in Pakistan? We send aid to a country that supports Afghan Taliban fighters who attack US troops and also supports terrorists in India. Is this behavior US taxpayers should be paying for?

    “America’s domestic prosperity is inextricably linked to our international military commitments and forward-leaning presence.”

    How is an average American’s economic prosperity linked to Egypt or Pakistan if they do not work for a military contractor? Why does the US have to spend all this money while Europe and Japan don’t?

  • rockstar

    @Mercer

    It isn’t linked in any way. There wil never be another significant war in Europe in donkey’s years, and Yugoslavia was the exception that proved the rule. EUCOM serves noone except its own employees. We should get rid of it if we want to balance the USA’s budget. Now if we want to keep some troops in Europe as a FOB for AFRICOM, we can, just be clear about it…

    And Asia is something else altogether.

  • kevin47

    I haven’t wrapped my head around this whole issue yet, since I did not expect Egypt to be in crisis, per se (though I’m inclined to argue that it is less in crisis than it was a year ago.)

    But this:

    “Now, I don’t like foreign aid any more than the next conservative: Most foreign aid probably is economically wasteful and counterproductive. But the point of foreign aid is not economics; it is geopolitics: It is intended to shape a recipient country’s behavior and, quite literally, buy American influence. And it does just that.”

    The hell? Let’s parse.

    “Now, I don’t like foreign aid any more than the next conservative:”

    Conservatives are divided on this issue, so this stance isn’t useful, nor is it a stance.

    “Most foreign aid probably is economically wasteful”

    This is a category error, but what I think the author means is that foreign is largely wasted, economically speaking. There is no ROI, in other words. We lose money. Got it.

    “and counterproductive.”

    In other words, to whatever result we intend to produce, our aid portends the opposite. Got it.

    “But the point of foreign aid is not economics;”

    So the ROI thing is not important. Got it.

    “it is geopolitics:”

    Foreign aid serves to produce a positive geopolitical result. This offsets lack of ROI. Got it.

    “It is intended to shape a recipient country’s behavior and, quite literally, buy American influence.”

    Foreign aid is intended to produce influence. Got it.

    “And it does just that.”

    Because it is counterproductive. Got it. Wait, what?

  • kevin47

    “Bush did not champion democracy when Hamas won an election. ”

    This is a good point. However, at minimum, a Democratic election allows for the possibility of a better alternative. As such, it is generally a desirable goal.

    But yeah, if you’re rule gets you Hamas, what is the point of your rule? Bush never had a good answer for that question.

  • talkradiosucks.com

    Ugh, they changed something and it removed all the formatting from my detailed response.

    Of course, I don’t see John responding to it anyway.

    If nothing else, I would dearly love to hear an explanation for how this bit…

    “This doesn’t mean that the United States should impose liberal democracy at the point of a gun everywhere around the globe. That, obviously, would be unjust, reckless and imprudent.”

    …jibes with his praise for George W. Bush and his relentless insistence that we continue doing exactly what he just said is “unjust, reckless and imprudent” in Iraq and Afghanistan.

  • Nanotek

    “Maybe you didn’t notice, but this website is ‘dedicated to the modernization and renewal of the Republican party and the conservative movement.’”

    contribution noted

  • Arms Merchant

  • Arms Merchant

    [Foreign aid] is intended to shape a recipient country’s behavior and, quite literally, buy American influence. And it does just that.

    Right. Just like our aid to Pakistan. Great ROI on that.

  • JohnD

    George Bush and his advisors had it right when they put forward a vision of democracy for the Middle East. This was a far-sighted view.

    What they knew, and what many others don’t seem to realize, is that democracy and the radical Islamists are at odds with each other. The radical Islamists absolutely hate democracy and see it as a threat and a Western influence. More than that, they consider it immoral. In their view, it puts the laws made by man (by legislatures) above those of Allah.

    The radical Islamists don’t want democracy. They want “Allahcracy”, with themselves as the ones who interpret Islamic law and the will of Allah, which justifies their staying in power permanently.

    But when the people generally get a taste of democracy, they want more, because they like the idea of choosing their leaders, which makes them skeptical when the Islamists oppose democracy. When elections come around, the radical Islamists will try to intimidate people at the polls, which backfires on them.

    Bush’s policy was the right one: get the people on-side for the longer run. Anything else only leads to problems down the road. Back in the 1950′s, the CIA assisted a coup in Iran which overthrew the democracy at the time, installing the Shah in power. If they had gone with the democracy instead, the democratic mechanisms would have worked over time to adjust grievances and to build up a democratic political class with popular support – and Khomeini and his ilk would never have come to power.

    Don’t forget that any non-democratic system will always have huge problems with corruption, as there is no accountability and no way of throwing out corrupt leaders at elections. This is a problem with Egypt, with Mubarak in power for 30 years.

    In the current crisis, the USA would be best to call for free and fair elections, and to leave it at that.

    If you are concerned about debt and the deficit, and it you want to keep government expenditures down, it’s best to work with the underlying forces and to take a longer-term view. Bush understood this in the Middle East, although he probably underestimated the difficulty of getting democracy up and running in Iraq, which is seriously divided between the Kurds, the Sunnis, and the Shiites – Pakistan is also a divided country, with different languages and ethnic groups. Egypt has much better prospects for democracy (fewer ethnic/religious divisions), and could be a model for the Middle East.

    As for US aid to Egypt, that was for historical reasons connected with the peace process in the Middle East, beginning with an Israel-Egypt deal. On a needs basis, there isn’t much of a case for giving aid to either of these two countries. The best way to help them out is to have open markets. The US already has a free trade agreement with Israel and there is a lot of US investment in Israel, so it’s hard to see why Israel needs aid on top of that. It’s really all political.

    But the political difficulties will need to be confronted if the deficit is to be reduced – and that means going after a whole lot of “sacred cows”. including aid to Israel, farm subsidies, and all kinds of payments/benefits for seniors, in addition to the “usual suspects” that we keep hearing about.

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  • Raskolnik

    “What they knew, and what many others don’t seem to realize, is that democracy and the radical Islamists are at odds with each other. The radical Islamists absolutely hate democracy and see it as a threat and a Western influence. More than that, they consider it immoral. In their view, it puts the laws made by man (by legislatures) above those of Allah.”

    Wow, I mean you really must be some new species of ignoramus.

    Are you aware that the only hospitals in Egypt that are worth anything are run by the (Islamist, terrorist-affiliated) Muslim Brotherhood? That they are the ones who are calling the loudest and the longest and the hardest for “democracy” in Egypt?

    When are people going to understand that Athenian “democracy” was a males-only club of slave-owning elites? That “democracy” is not the cure to the ills of the Middle East, or of the world? The issue is not squeaky-clean (lower-case-d) democrats vs. those evil Islamists, or Islamofascists or whatever. The issue is that Arabs have been force-fed a violent form of Islam as a direct response to the humiliation of British and French colonial occupation, because it was the only way they had of standing up to their colonial oppressors. Their narrative–which I think has some truth to it–is that American military adventurism is just the latest in a string of Western powers’ military adventurism, going back centuries. You don’t fight that with bullets, or with ballot-boxes. You fight that with kindness, education, and meaningful dialogue. As NYT columnist (!) Roger Cohen pointed out a few weeks ago, peace in Ireland would have been impossible if Sinn Fein’s links to violent resistance had precluded it from getting a place at the round table. Why is there a double-standard for Hezbollah, Hamas, and, yes, the Muslim Brotherhood?

  • WaStateUrbanGOPer

    Guardiano: Were you drunk when you posted this article?

    How can you fault Rand Paul’s opposition to foreign aid for the revolution in Egypt? This revolution is taking place in spite of the fact that the U.S. grants Egypt more money than any country save Israel. Your argument against Paul makes no earthly sense.

    In light of the mayhem on the streets of Cairo, Rand Paul’s position on foreign aid seems nothing if not the very epitome of fiscal responsibility.

  • WaStateUrbanGOPer

    “Purge the neocons. Start with Guardiano!”

    JimBob, if you can seriously make this “purge” a reality, I’ll never jump on you again for writing crude and disrespectful things about the president. Seriously.

  • WaStateUrbanGOPer

    A Poem for the Frum Forum
    (By WaStateUrbanGoper)

    John Guardiano was a good ol’ man,
    He hopped out the window with his $%&# in his hand;
    He said, “Excuse me Kristol, you sexy bitch,
    Bend me over and scratch your itch!”

  • midcon

    Charity begins at home. However, we have economic, national security, and heritage interests in other parts of the globe. Because we are a nation of immigrants, we care about what happens in places like Ireland, Slovenia, China, Egypt, etc. Maybe it’s a connection to our roots or heritage, or pride, but the connection exists. We take what happens in those countries personnally.

    Obviously we have national security interests. Us against the world is a losing proposition. We must have allies and it is in our interest to reduce or eliminate threats posed by rogue and unstabilized countries.

    Finally, we need trading partners and stable countries provide us with markets for our goods and sources for raw materials for our industries.

    Given that we must be engaged in the world and that a completely isolationist policy is not in our best interests, what should our policies (backed up with action) be? Do we want governments like ours? What forms of democracy are acceptable to us? Do dictatorships meet our particular needs just as well as democracies? Dictatorships tend to breed radicalism which is a destablizing force. So it would seem that dictatorships may, in the short term, appear to support our interests, but the in the long term will result in destabilization, which are not in our interests.

    My point is, that we have both short term and long term interests, but we definitely have interests and cannot disengage from the world. While I am more a liberatarian than anything else, we ignore the rest of world at our peril. What we need are concrete policies and principles that are consistently applied across the globe. I can give Bush credit for at least having a vision. Unfortunately, that’s all the credit he gets, because his vision was to export American democracy and just because American democracy works here (and there is some question regarding that), it does not hold that it would work in other countries with different cultures.

  • Gramps

    @ WaStateUrbanGOPer // Jan 30, 2011 at 3:07 am

    Some reader here gave you a thumbs up for that sordid drivel…?
    Webmaster dispense with the thumb thingie…!

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  • deBohun

    Calculating the Costs of Nation Building…

    IRAQ

    Start to Finish: 7 Years, with occupation ongoing
    Death of Iraqi Citizens: as high as 650,000
    Injury of Iraqi Citizens: unknown, likely in the millions, severe injuries especially amongst the civilian population
    Death of U.S. citizens: apx. 6,000
    Injury of U.S. citizens: apx. 80,000
    Results: ongoing civil war, occupation, massive destruction of local public infrastructure, former dictator murdered following drumhead trial, damage to U.S. international reputation incalculable
    Profits for U.S. military industrial complex: hundreds of billions dollars and growing
    Cost to U.S. taxpayers: seven hundred billions dollars and growing, U.S. economy in depression, another Viet Nam, near universal hostility toward the U.S. and U.S. citizens resulting in a massive loss of domestic civil liberties in order to protect the U.S. government

    Calculating the Costs of Nation Building Done Right…

    EGYPT

    Start to Finish: 18 Days
    Death of Egyptian Citizens: 334
    Injury of Egyptian Citizens: estimated at 3,000, mostly minor injuries
    Death of U.S. Citizens: 0
    Injury o f U.S. Citizens: a few minor injuries to journalists, one major assault
    Results: apparent success, transition to democracy underway, little damage to local public infrastructure, former dictator status unknown, no impact on U.S. reputation
    Profits for U.S. military industrial complex: $0.00
    Cost to U.S. taxpayers: minimal cost of evacuations

  • michaelhassuperpowers

    Standing on the side of liberty involves the failed U.S. government extracting revenues and going into debt to dump funds, equipment and training on its rights violating foreign government family? I doubt that to say the least.