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Old 2003-09-20, 20:35   #1
outlnder
 
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Default Is the USA the "new" peacekeeper of the world??

Ever since the fall of the Soviet Union, the US has been the leader in trying to keep peace on this planet.

Should the United States be the police force of the world or should they mind their own business and stay out??
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Old 2003-09-20, 21:12   #2
Prime95
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Default Re: Is the USA the "new" peacekeeper of the world??

Quote:
Originally posted by outlnder
the US has been the leader in trying to keep peace on this planet.
Huh? Are Afghanistan and Iraq part of our new plan of world peace through war. Two countries down a hundred some odd to go - then we'll have some world peace!
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Old 2003-09-20, 22:33   #3
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Yes, both Afghanistan and Iraq are peacekeeping missions.

The world will NOT be kind without some country with a big stick to keep them in line.

Would you rather allow ethnic purification to occur??
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Old 2003-09-20, 23:18   #4
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Default Re: Is the USA the "new" peacekeeper of the world??

Quote:
Originally posted by outlnder
Ever since the fall of the Soviet Union, the US has been the leader in trying to keep peace on this planet.

Should the United States be the police force of the world or should they mind their own business and stay out??
The US of A's time will come, have no doubt about that. Two hundred odd years ago, the UK was one of the world's first "police forces", in the same sense that the USA invading other countries can be called policing.....

...the history books tell you what happened next (1776 anyone?), in the case of the USA it will be China.

The US is already selling out to the Chinese because rampant consumerism leading to massive debt will eventually lead to a transfer of "global power".
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Old 2003-09-21, 00:36   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by outlnder
Yes, both Afghanistan and Iraq are peacekeeping missions.
Would you rather allow ethnic purification to occur??
Defining war as a peacekeeping mission is simply too much of a perversion of the English language for me.

Can war make the world a safer place in the long run? Yes. Can war be justified for humantarian reasons? Yes. However, in neither case can war be defined as a peacekeeping mission.
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Old 2003-09-21, 01:15   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by outlnder
The world will NOT be kind without some country with a big stick to keep them in line.
I find this statement scary on several fronts:

a) There are plenty of countries in this world that do remain kind without our influence.

b) Successful implementation of your policy would result in a world full of kind countries except one - the U.S. bully. These kind countries would then rightfully combine to eliminate the bully.

c) Isn't it arrogant to think the U.S. should impose its will on other countries except in very special situations - such as self-defense or ethnic cleansing? Even then, is it not better to get as much worldwide support as you can?

d) Why is a big stick the best or only way to influence other countries? In general, "kind" countries are prosperous with a stake in the world economy. A big stick is useless in making these countries prosperous.

e) Who defines what a "kind" country is? OK, ethic cleansing - not kind. Murderous dictatorship - not kind. Dictatorship that only threatens and bullies its citizens - do you use the big stick to impose freedom of speech and free elections? Royal family that makes all females wear burqas - do we use our big stick to impose womens rights?
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Old 2003-09-21, 05:31   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by Prime95
[d) Why is a big stick the best or only way to influence other countries? In general, "kind" countries are prosperous with a stake in the world economy. A big stick is useless in making these countries prosperous.
I agree. I am a big subscriber to the MacDonalds theory of peacekeeping. It was observed a few years back (and as far as I know it is still correct) that two countries that both had a chain of MacDonalds restaurants at the time had never been to war with each other. (I'm just asking to be shot down with counter-examples here and no, I can't document the original source.)

Nevertheless, I believe that the basic observation is correct, that when there are enough citizens in a country who have a self-interest in international free trade and consumerism (MacDonalds being one symptom of this) it makes it very unlikely that such a country will mess its economy up by going to war.

In this sense, MacDonalds have probably done more for world peace than the UN or the US Government. (We'll ignore what they've done for world waistlines.)
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Old 2003-09-21, 10:35   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by kwstone
I agree. I am a big subscriber to the MacDonalds theory of peacekeeping.
... MacDonalds have probably done more for world peace than the UN or the US Government. (We'll ignore what they've done for world waistlines.)
I presume that you are referring to the McDonalds chain of resturants that specialize in "fast food" hamburgers, fries, etc.

I won't dispute the correlation, but I highly question the assertion that this business is a cause of mutually friendly relations rather than simply an effect.
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Old 2003-09-21, 19:22   #9
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There is nothing really "new" about the US "peacekeeping". If you look back in history you will find that the US has militarily intervened in at least 46 countries in teh past 100 odd years starting with the Philippines.

The points that George makes are absolutely on target.

What gives the US the right to wield the big stick? That it has the biggest stick? Surely its not going to have it forever. Maybe for our lifetimes but every empire falls eventually. Would then like some other country, say China, to hold a big stick and mould the world as it sees fit?

Military interventions are always expensive and almost never create a more just country. There are very few exceptions to the rule - Kosovo being the most recent one that comes to mind - but that was in the still new post-Cold War optimism where people thought a more just world could still come about and even that required all of NATO and the UN.

But then, this administration decided to go its own way and tell its enemies - real or imagined - to bring it on and we have a situation in Iraq and Afghanistan that doesn't look like its going to be any better for the foreseeable future and the billions being pumped into the military plus the tax cuts mean the economy just ain't getting any better.

But as long as the Bush team stays on the message i.e. the neverending war against terrorism he has a good chance of being re-elected.

PS: The bombing of Serbia in 1999 was the first counter to the McDonalds theory.
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Old 2003-09-21, 22:25   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by garo
the billions being pumped into the military plus the tax cuts mean the economy just ain't getting any better.
I dispute your premise that either military spending or tax cuts are causes for the lack of economic growth.

The only negative effect of governmental spending on "whatever" is the impact that it has on the budget, and the resulting effect on the national debt and therefore interest rates.

In general, all other aspects of national spending are good for the economy. Who do you think gets most of the military spending? It is American businesses which, in turn provide jobs, pay taxes, etc. All of these are POSITIVE economic factors. Similarly, the tax cuts provide additional money to the consuming public. The theory is that the positive effect of the additional availability will be multiplied in the marketplace and ultimately return more to the government than it costs them in immediate revenue.
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Old 2003-09-21, 22:39   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by kwstone
I am a big subscriber to the MacDonalds theory of peacekeeping. It was observed a few years back (and as far as I know it is still correct) that two countries that both had a chain of MacDonalds restaurants at the time had never been to war with each other.
IIRC the original version was that no two countries with fully democratic governments have ever been at war with each other.

Here, "fully" is my substitution for the original qualification, whose exact wording I cannot recall, that excluded governments that (a) called themselves "democratic" but did not have all the features such as free elections, civil liberties, and so forth that are featured in what we consider true democracies or (b) had previously been democratic but were currently.ruled by dictators, military juntas or strongmen etc.

Of course, McDonalds has had few franchises in nondemocratic countries, and, for a while, no nondemocratic McDonalds-ized country had been at war with another McDonalds-ized country, democratic or not.
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