At 2 p.m. today, the NBER will release the monthly Treasury update of debt relative to credit. (Here’s a spoiler: It won’t be anything we didn’t see a month ago. We’re up to our ears in debt.) Meanwhile, Congress is rushing back into emergency session for a quick fix to stave off default as our spending continues to increasingly exceed our income. At a time when every politician is casting blame about the rapidly ballooning national debt and the continual political struggle surrounding raising the debt limit, it’s worth our while to examine the larger picture: Whose fault, really, is the precarious condition of our national finances?
It’s tempting for partisans to each blame the other party; it’s easily done, too, as government waste has become proverbial and inefficiency is automatically assumed without the bother of proving it. It’s equally simple for a certain class of people to throw up their hands and blame all politicians, as though they themselves would do better if they were in charge. But even a little brief reflection will show that, while these are satisfying accusations, they can’t possibly have much merit.
This is a study in principles of military history. It’s here because it’s relevant to modern-day American life. Follow along even if at first you can’t see why it’s relevant; I’ll explain.
Pacification: the process of inducing peace on a population, often by forcibly suppressing or eliminating hostile elements
The United States has an excellent track record fighting wars, but historically we’ve had decidedly mixed results ending them, from Vietnam to the Wars On Drugs and Terror. We’re not unique; enforcing peace on a hostile populace is not a task for which modern armies, particularly those of nations with modern sensibilites, are well suited. In ancient times, it was the custom to brutally suppress the conquered with mass slaughter and slavery, but such methods (more…)
This is not being written in response to any particular event. There was probably one today or yesterday or last week, and CNN no doubt covered it with their usual attention to detail and mechanical concern. I’m probably pretty sad about it myself. This is why I’m writing this article on a day when the headlines are about something else. It’s important to keep perspective. You can’t create effective policy and solve social problems when you’re too busy yelling or sobbing or both.
Trouble is, I’m furious. Even today, I can’t help but be furious (more…)
For those of you who have been following the news, the recent announcement by Stag Arms about their plea deal with the ATF is unsurprising. For those of you that haven’t been paying attention, here’s a basic rundown:
Stag is a true niche manufacturer. They assemble the only version of the AR-15 presently on the market that’s designed for left-handers, specifically (more…)