Monday, August 20, 2012

Introducing Suzie Dershowitz Part 2

Today we will be ‘Provoking Accountability’….Of the ‘Unaccountable’

Smiling Suzie Dershowitz, with an incredibly hybris-ridden slogan. Source: POGO
(and why does this reminded me of a Jonah Goldberg book?)

POGO Major Ploy Du Jour #1: False Non-Political/Partisanship claims. Hint: Libertarian is NOT Conservative.

A Continuation From Part 1

Ms. Dershowitz opened her 'piece' (see part 1) by offering a title and a couple of paragraphs intimating POGO's position on reducing defense spending has broad support:
A recent study by Benjamin Zycher from the libertarian think tank the CATO Institute reaffirms what we've been saying all along: Cutting Pentagon spending will not cause the economic nightmare or job loss catastrophe the defense industry wants us to fear.
In addition to CATO, other right-leaning analysts, advocates, and politicians have also been vocally challenging the narrative that defense spending must not be decreased. Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform, recently pledged to fight any efforts to divert tax reform revenues toward an increase in Pentagon spending or avoiding across-the-board budget cuts, known as sequestration. Rep. Roscoe Bartlett (R-Md.), a senior Republican on the House Armed Services Committee, has called for a national dialogue on sequestration, recognizing that "the average American out there, by big percentages, wants to cut defense by twice the sequester amount."
Got that? The 'spectrum' of support includes:
  1. ‘Big L’ Libertarian CATO which thinks of terms of Republic OR Empire, and that if you're not all at home, well then you must be an Empire
  2. A Cult of Personality ‘small government’ activist of the extreme self-serving more than tax-cut ilk, AKA Grover Norquist, and
  3. ONE Republican Congressional dinosaur who just happens to be in a fight to keep his seat: the sole Republican House Seat in a district that has been redrawn to his disadvantage since the last election.
Who in that group would today be likely to place a priority on defense spending compared to their other interests?
Answer: None of them.

 About ‘Big L’ CATO and Defense  

‘Big L’ CATO has a Pollyanna view of world affairs that lives under the delusion that the US can afford to downsize the military because THEY don’t see the ‘threat’ which, combined with a somewhat more ‘passive isolationist’ vision of the United States’ role in world affairs versus the current (and faded under Obama) role as the benevolent and last remaining Superpower. This is perfectly acceptable, if CATO would then make statements that were qualified with the caveat “In CATO’s opinion, view, vision, we believe X”. But they don’t qualify. They flatly assert we need to reduce our defense spending and our involvement in the world’s affairs, that there is no ‘threat’ that warrants defense spending levels, etc (see this video which could have been the germ for the POGO regurgitation) . In doing so they look right past the point that if the United States does not ensure its interests are taken care of around the globe, someone else will take care of them for us in the manner of their choosing. The focus on visible ‘threats’ conveniently prevents them having to recognize: 
  • The positive economic effects of close defense relationships with our allies, 
  • The deterrent effects to those who would seek to cause us indirect as well as direct harm, economic or otherwise, 
  • The advantages of having ‘friends’ and forces in place for any emergency (most likely unforeseen) no matter where on the globe that emergency might appear. 
As I’ve always said: I would be a Libertarian, if they had a frickin’ clue when it comes to defense, but then if they did, they would be good Conservatives. Here’s a tip for CATO.
If POGO and PDA are on your side—you are on the wrong side.
As it is, your defense ‘work’ just gives aid and comfort to the enemy. Sad.
BTW: Notice between the CATO ‘study’ and the CATO video, there is a conflation of the topics of ‘defense reductions’ in general and ‘defense sequestration’ specifically? This serves to abstract the issue and make it more ‘feely’ than ‘factual’. We’ll work on that later.

Part 3
Part 4

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