View Poll Results: In the broadest of terms, which of the following most closely describes your geopolitical expectations for the post-US world order?

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  • A truly multipolar reorientation of geopolitics with few or no globally dominant “great powers.”

    8 26.67%
  • A division of the world into “spheres of influence” dominated by authoritarian powers (China, Russia, Iran, for example)

    6 20.00%
  • The US will remain globally dominant thanks to King Dollar and its sheer size, even if politically or militarily weaker relative to its turn of the century peak.

    9 30.00%
  • The EU will pull itself together, emerge from the US’ shadow, neutralize Russian interests on its doorstep, and Europe will once again carry the torch of the liberal/western world order.

    2 6.67%
  • Other (please explain)

    5 16.67%
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Thread: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

  1. #41
    conon394's Avatar hoi polloi
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    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    Everyone who is working pays income taxes. So its not just the elites that pay for military-industrial complex, but mainly American middle class, which gains little to nothing from "superpower status".
    Also we are yet to see any evidence that American taxpayers benefit from having military-industrial complex and states like Israel leeching funds that could have gone on things like infrastructure, scientific research, etc.
    It would make sense for majority of US population to view military-industrial complex as a parasite, since it doesn't improve their lives nor benefits them.
    Umm HH you forget something about the US. It saddled with a bizarre amount of small government types, and one party that lives in perpetual opposition to the New Deal. One thing they allow is national defense. Do you think the Interstate highway system would have happened with IKE weighing on it military usefulness? do you think ARPA/DARPA would exist if had been called the advanced civilian research agency. Look at the ARS (USDA) a jewel of agriculture research with a tradition going back to Abraham Lincoln. Almost assuredly in conjunction with land grant ag schools the reason Americans spend so very little for food, yet it is is constantly the subject of attempts to cut its budget or staff level by Republicans (food security is apparently not national defense). I'll give you a good example the US ship building industry.

    https://www.enotrans.org/article/dec...ying-u-s-jobs/


    https://www.cna.org/CNA_files/PDF/D0006988.A1.pdf (note page 18 in particular)

    So basically in 1980 we have a world of subsidized shipbuilding. One where realistically now as then Japan would likely have the leading position sans industrial policy by every nation but places like the US and UK would likely still have smaller but successful industries. Also given the clear example of what happened to arobust UK ship building industry when it cut all subsides - it withered away. What did Uncle Ronnie do almost immediately he gutted the Merchant Marine Act, and presto change-o no real US ship building. Nixon should have called it the Merchant Marine Act and Defense act, than it would be about national security, and not evil industrialist policy. The really bizarre thing it (MMA) was killed with almost no notice. No first and attempt a grand trade deal with all the OECD nations for example to get rid of or scale back subsides, no roll in period to allow US produces to adjust, on just ideological purity I mean stupidity.

    Take Boeing and Airbus. I not going to parse the circular argument of who is subsidized more and what means or started first, but clearly Boeing would not be subsidized as mush if it could not depend on the Pentagon. Do you really think Trump and Republicans are going to pass the Civil Aviation Industry support act. The ideal that money not spent on the pentagon would go to domestic research or infrastructure or grants to ameliorate tuition costs an public university or whatever is not well founded.

    I mean really HH think about it. Back when the US was running a surplus and their was no particular war to fight. The ASCE ratings for US infrastructure were nearly as bad. The US could borrowed cheap. But M Freeman was bloviating about the need to cut takes so the debt market would stay liquid (really just cover standard Republican pap). The Republicans wanted to return the surplus, with systemic tax cuts in response to a cyclical occurrence - again typical. Where were the savvy republican business types calling for a trillion dollar infrastructure plan financed with cheap debt that would keep the bond market liquid and likely not cause any worry? Really a opportunity lost because bill could not keep his cock in his pants. From a macro economic perspective a trillion dollars in infrastructure starting in Clinton's second term would have very opportune. A The Fed was going to move to pop the dot com bubble (and rightly so) with a solid fiscal stimulus program aimed at real things not dot hype 2001 recession might well have simply been the 2001 slow down possibly the mythical 'soft landing' economists at the fed dream about.
    Last edited by conon394; October 22, 2019 at 09:38 AM.
    IN PATROCINIVM SVB Dromikaites

    'One day when I fly with my hands - up down the sky, like a bird'

    But if the cause be not good, the king himself hath a heavy reckoning to make, when all those legs and arms and heads, chopped off in battle, shall join together at the latter day and cry all 'We died at such a place; some swearing, some crying for surgeon, some upon their wives left poor behind them, some upon the debts they owe, some upon their children rawly left.

    Hyperides of Athens: We know, replied he, that Antipater is good, but we (the Demos of Athens) have no need of a master at present, even a good one.

  2. #42
    Legio_Italica's Avatar Lost in Limbo
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    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    Quote Originally Posted by pchalk View Post
    I can imagine what you mean with respect to US foreign policy but am curious what examples you might think to be domestic assaults.
    US voters are inwardly focused and favor isolationist candidates. In an era where US adversaries smell blood in the water and are ramping up aggressive attacks on the US led world order, widespread voter sentiment conducive to those ends does not bode well for the US’ ability to defend its traditional geopolitical roles. We’ve seen several examples during the Trump admin that will continue whether Trump wins again or not (trade protectionism, Syria pullout, growing rifts with US allies, incoherent foreign policy that translates to less effective projection of military and diplomatic force, inability or unwillingness to substantively challenge the aims of Russia, China and Iran within their respective theaters, etc).

  3. #43

    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    The US is largely divided today because of contradictions within the american culture and government; the people always want safe insular looking candidates but the elites want blood and fire, since it's they who will benefit from these wars and the lower classes who will do the dying and getting wounded and having to live the rest of their lives in perpetual pain, PTSD or as cripples and amputees.

  4. #44
    conon394's Avatar hoi polloi
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    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    The US is largely divided today because of contradictions within the american culture and government; the people always want safe insular looking candidates but the elites want blood and fire, since it's they who will benefit from these wars and the lower classes who will do the dying and getting wounded and having to live the rest of their lives in perpetual pain, PTSD or as cripples and amputees.
    Yep measure analysis from Exach as always. All elites are a unified block? So term which elites gained form say the intervention in Serbia?
    IN PATROCINIVM SVB Dromikaites

    'One day when I fly with my hands - up down the sky, like a bird'

    But if the cause be not good, the king himself hath a heavy reckoning to make, when all those legs and arms and heads, chopped off in battle, shall join together at the latter day and cry all 'We died at such a place; some swearing, some crying for surgeon, some upon their wives left poor behind them, some upon the debts they owe, some upon their children rawly left.

    Hyperides of Athens: We know, replied he, that Antipater is good, but we (the Demos of Athens) have no need of a master at present, even a good one.

  5. #45

    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    Quote Originally Posted by conon394 View Post
    Yep measure analysis from Exach as always. All elites are a unified block? So term which elites gained form say the intervention in Serbia?
    They were in a middle of major PR scandal and helping Albanians with their occupation of Kosovo and resulting ethnic cleansing of Serbs served as a useful distraction.

  6. #46
    Legio_Italica's Avatar Lost in Limbo
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    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    It appears that the likely Sanders/Trump matchup will cement US decline as a self-imposed matter of fact, rather than a near to medium term possibility:
    The shift underscores a central foreign-policy message of the 2020 presidential election: The days of the United States projecting power around the world primarily through its military are officially numbered. If the race pits Trump against Sanders, regardless of the outcome, the America that instinctively sent the cavalry to the rescue won’t be returning anytime soon.

    “Sanders will represent, like Trump, maybe in a more civilized way, a more sophisticated way, a more predictable way, the U.S. partially withdrawing from world affairs,” Gérard Araud, the former French ambassador to the United States, told me.

    Many European officials consider Sanders “a left-wing isolationist,” Araud explained. They’re as “terrified” by the prospect of his presidency as of a second Trump term, because it would sow doubts about America’s continued commitment to NATO and sustaining the U.S.-led international system.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/politics...policy/606364/
    The Sanders camp has pushed back on the characterization, but the defense was hardly reassuring:
    Duss contrasted his boss’s tactics and Trump’s, noting that Sanders would consult with allies and not announce changes to America’s overseas military presence “by tweet” or “treat the United States military as a paid mercenary force.” But he didn’t necessarily distinguish between their strategic objectives.
    “There are real questions about the cost of maintaining these huge military presences in some of these places, so we’re definitely interested in thinking hard about whether we can reduce the number of troops in these places and still meet these [security] commitments we’ve made to these partners,” he said, when I asked about U.S. troops stationed in countries such as Japan, South Korea, and Germany. “Economically, it’s not really sustainable in the long term.”

    https://www.theatlantic.com/politics...policy/606364/
    Trump and Sanders both make the mistake, or perhaps deliberate choice, to regard over a century of American foreign policy with contempt. Both speak in terms of cost and fairness, without consideration for the full picture of national security in a globalized world.

    Teddy Roosevelt understood, even in his day before American power existed in the modern sense, that national security mandates ceaseless vigilance and proaction:

    “Nine-tenths of wisdom is to be wise in time, and at the right time; and my whole foreign policy was based on the exercise of intelligent forethought and of decisive action sufficiently far in advance of any likely crisis to make it improbable that we would run into serious trouble.”

    With Trump putting American foreign policy up for sale, and Sanders declaring it fundamentally immoral, there is no clear path forward for American leadership in the world. Trump tweets, and Sanders plans to write letters about “common interests” as a way to further American interests abroad. Both seem to regard American power as a state of nature that cannot change. Sanders’ isolationism is more elegant, but still fundamentally misunderstands that soft power will not long endure without actual power to back it up, and the willingness to use it against those who deliberately seek to undermine and destroy the modern world order built on multilateral cooperation and democratic norms.

    Our European friends seem privately disturbed, as they should be, about what the world will look like when America is gone from the world stage. Sanders’ prior commentary on the Monroe Doctrine increases the likelihood of the further and unimpeded advance of Russian and Chinese interests and infrastructure in Latin America, which poses a direct threat to the US itself, under a Sanders Administration. Americans may not care when authoritarian interests divvy up Europe and Asia, but perhaps when adversaries start making demands from the vantage point of a military/missile base in Nicaragua, Venezuela or Cuba, we may learn too late that Teddy was right.

    https://www.fpri.org/article/2019/06...latin-america/
    https://www.usni.org/magazines/proce...s-neglect-high
    https://nationalinterest.org/feature...ca-china-73906

  7. #47

    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    Quote Originally Posted by 95thrifleman View Post
    I think America taking an isolationist stance while it sorts out domestic issues will be good for everyone in the long term.
    It's never going to happen unless the world makes them and then Europe can then retake what was stolen, correct?

  8. #48

    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    Main enemy of Europeans are their own elites (like Macron or Merkel), I don't think US really has that much sway in there.

  9. #49
    Legio_Italica's Avatar Lost in Limbo
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    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    In Iran, China, and elsewhere, the Trump administration has put aggressive economic statecraft at the center of its foreign policy, but often without clear diplomatic objectives. Unless economic statecraft is utilized as part of a coherent diplomatic approach, measures may succeed at imposing economic pain, but fail to produce desired policy outcomes. Moreover, if U.S. actions fall short of highly principled standards, there is a risk of undermining the source of power behind economic statecraft—the singular global centrality of the U.S. economy derived from confidence in the U.S. financial system, the strength of the dollar, and the attractiveness of U.S. markets.

    Economic weapons should be used carefully and with an understanding of their costs. As an alternative to military force, economic weapons are a vitally important way to counter malign activity like terrorism and nuclear proliferation, as well as economic threats like unfair trade practices. Their potency is precisely why they should be used carefully, with the goal of ensuring our tools remain effective for a long time to come.

    At Treasury, I employed three basic principles when considering sanctions actions and similar measures. First, marshaling broad international support for sanctions creates maximum pressure and minimizes undesired spillover effects. Second, the target of an action must have a reliable expectation of relief should it yield to demands to change its behavior. Finally, rigorous and highly principled execution is essential.

    The current administration has reversed these key principles. Unilateral and unpredictable sanctions have left our allies often questioning the basis of those actions and uneasy when deciding whether to cooperate. We must reserve the right to act alone but should do so only when absolutely necessary for our national security.


    https://www.barrons.com/articles/jac...ns-51582117201
    It will be interesting to see exactly how Trump’s flailing foreign policy, as an aimless, total exposure of US weakness, converges with the overt anti-US isolationism of a potential Sanders Administration. I see the US continuing along the path to becoming the first unilaterally self-sabotaged world power in history, if only by a matter of degrees.

  10. #50

    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    Assigning words like "statecraft" to Trump's foreign policy is overly generous. He has neither the intelligence, nor the inclination to implement anything that would fit that definition.

  11. #51

    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    Quote Originally Posted by Love Mountain View Post
    He has neither the intelligence, nor the inclination to implement anything that would fit that definition.
    And unfortunately for us, Putin does. With our entire intelligence apparatus now compromised the US will likely never recover.

  12. #52

    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    Quote Originally Posted by Love Mountain View Post
    Assigning words like "statecraft" to Trump's foreign policy is overly generous. He has neither the intelligence, nor the inclination to implement anything that would fit that definition.
    Ironic, given how Trump had proven to be more competent then the last several presidential administrations before him.

  13. #53
    conon394's Avatar hoi polloi
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    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    Quote Originally Posted by Heathen Hammer View Post
    Ironic, given how Trump had proven to be more competent then the last several presidential administrations before him.
    Yes you are right Canada will still have non industry meat inspectors, a government run without a slew of acting directors and hey maybe not a demoralized lot scientific professionals or at least the ones not opting out.
    IN PATROCINIVM SVB Dromikaites

    'One day when I fly with my hands - up down the sky, like a bird'

    But if the cause be not good, the king himself hath a heavy reckoning to make, when all those legs and arms and heads, chopped off in battle, shall join together at the latter day and cry all 'We died at such a place; some swearing, some crying for surgeon, some upon their wives left poor behind them, some upon the debts they owe, some upon their children rawly left.

    Hyperides of Athens: We know, replied he, that Antipater is good, but we (the Demos of Athens) have no need of a master at present, even a good one.

  14. #54

    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    Quote Originally Posted by conon394 View Post
    Yes you are right Canada will still have non industry meat inspectors, a government run without a slew of acting directors and hey maybe not a demoralized lot scientific professionals or at least the ones not opting out.
    If you are comparing Trump to Trudeau, I don't recall the former wasting millions of taxpayer money on "foreign aid" scams or raising taxes because China's and India's impact on the environment.

  15. #55
    conon394's Avatar hoi polloi
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    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    If you are comparing Trump to Trudeau, I don't recall the former wasting millions of taxpayer money on "foreign aid" scams or raising taxes because China's and India's impact on the environment.
    No the former cut taxes absurdly in a expansion as soon as the former restores taxes to their 1960 rates when 4-6% growth was typical and we actually invested in education and infrastructure and corporate stock buy backs I will be happy.
    IN PATROCINIVM SVB Dromikaites

    'One day when I fly with my hands - up down the sky, like a bird'

    But if the cause be not good, the king himself hath a heavy reckoning to make, when all those legs and arms and heads, chopped off in battle, shall join together at the latter day and cry all 'We died at such a place; some swearing, some crying for surgeon, some upon their wives left poor behind them, some upon the debts they owe, some upon their children rawly left.

    Hyperides of Athens: We know, replied he, that Antipater is good, but we (the Demos of Athens) have no need of a master at present, even a good one.

  16. #56
    Akar's Avatar I am not a clever man
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    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    I can't imagine how someone could think Trump's foreign policy has been anything but irrational and self serving. How much do you have to hate black people to think Obama did a worse job than Trump?

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  17. #57
    saxdude's Avatar Vicarius Provinciae
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    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    Quote Originally Posted by Legio_Italica View Post

    Our European friends seem privately disturbed, as they should be, about what the world will look like when America is gone from the world stage. Sanders’ prior commentary on the Monroe Doctrine increases the likelihood of the further and unimpeded advance of Russian and Chinese interests and infrastructure in Latin America, which poses a direct threat to the US itself, under a Sanders Administration. Americans may not care when authoritarian interests divvy up Europe and Asia, but perhaps when adversaries start making demands from the vantage point of a military/missile base in Nicaragua, Venezuela or Cuba, we may learn too late that Teddy was right.

    https://www.fpri.org/article/2019/06...latin-america/
    https://www.usni.org/magazines/proce...s-neglect-high
    https://nationalinterest.org/feature...ca-china-73906
    Can't wait.

    I ain't jokin' when it comes to mah paintings ಠ_ಠ

  18. #58

    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    Quote Originally Posted by Akar View Post
    I can't imagine how someone could think Trump's foreign policy has been anything but irrational and self serving. How much do you have to hate black people to think Obama did a worse job than Trump?
    We can ask that question to black people that were put into cages and literally enslaved by "democratic freedom fighters" that Obama helped bring to power in Libya.

  19. #59
    Akar's Avatar I am not a clever man
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    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    Ah yes, whataboutism. The classic defense of those who know they are in the wrong.

    What about the kids locked in cages by the current president?


    See? I can do it too.

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  20. #60

    Default Re: On US Isolationism, Expectations for the Post-US World Order

    Pointing out that Obama did worse job then Trump when discussing who did worse job is not whataboutism. Also Trump didn't lock any kids in cages, so that argument is kinda stillborn.

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