Yesterday, I was visiting with the only Republican I will even say hello to. He is a real one too.
I had heard earlier in the day that a marine from our home town with this guy's unusual last name had died in Iraq, and I was concerned that it might be his relative or even a brother. That gave him the opportunity to ask me if I thought we could get out of Iraq.
I told him that we are in Iraq for the oil.
He said he didn't realize that I believed in conspiracy theories.
I told him that peak oil was dictating our policy,
and that we don't have any plans to leave.
He didn't know what I was talking about.
If his wife was driving and he saw that the gas gauge was half full,
I wonder if he try to fix it by calling it a conspiracy theory .
Then, I saw this in the Guardian.
A New Credo for the Hyperpower
by Simon Tisdall
Thursday August 4, 2005
To improve its influence and image in the world, the US should refrain from building new nuclear weapons, scrap the Bush doctrine of preventive war and regime change, break its climate-changing oil habit, and recommit to international rule-making organisations such as the UN.
The musings of a leftwing think-tank? A liberal pipedream? Not a bit of it. These proposals come from Richard Haass, a leading light in the US foreign policy establishment and former senior official in the Clinton and Bush administrations.
As strategists ponder America's future direction amid continuing international divisions over Iraq, the "war on terror", Kyoto, trade and a host of other issues, Mr Haass' new "integration doctrine" is being taken seriously. Henry Kissinger, hardly a radical, is a fan.
As his title implies, Mr Haass does not believe the US should surrender its post-1945 leading role. But he suggests its national interests will be best served if hubristic ideas about American exceptionalism, indispensability and unilateralism are tempered by more pragmatic, mutually beneficial cooperation with emerging powers such as Europe and China.
Pointing to perhaps the biggest lesson of the neo-conservative era, Mr Haass says hyperpower has limits - and they have been reached.
"The US does not need the world's permission to act, but it does need the world's support to succeed," he writes. "No single country, no matter how powerful, can contend successfully on its own with trans-national challenges."
Controversially, he urges President Bush to cool his evangelical enthusiasm for spreading democracy. Affording primacy to that aim is "neither desirable nor practical", Mr Haass says, given the many more pressing threats, such as proliferation, terrorism and protectionism, which require an improved collective response.
In a devastating essay in the New York Review of Books on post-invasion failures in Iraq, Peter Galbraith, a former US ambassador, condemns the American "arrogance and ignorance" that he says could produce the ultimate own goal: Kurdish secession and a theocratic Shia state in thrall to Iran.
He says the US must accept that "while the Sunni Arab insurgents cannot win, neither can they be defeated" and that the attempt to agree a lasting uni-state constitution is doomed. Only a "drastic change of strategy" involving a loose confederal structure of three self-governing communities can save Iraq from disintegration, he claims.
Brian Urquhart, a former UN undersecretary-general, has some sobering words for would-be architects of a more enlightened world order. Reviewing Mr Haass's book, he highlights the formidable domestic political obstacles to change, particularly US corporate lobbying power.
And he questions the quality of contemporary American leadership. "
Now Richard Haass, is President of the Council on Foreign Relations,
Which is not exactly a slouch organization.
And I am not exactly a fan of them.
But this is the kind of policy you would expect from mature leadership.
I told the only Republican that I will even be nice to,
that he should read my blog.
Perhaps he and his friends should check in at the CFR too.
For The Opportunity.
Perhaps the adults have come home.
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