Semi-Daily Journal Archive

The Blogspot archive of the weblog of J. Bradford DeLong, Professor of Economics and Chair of the PEIS major at U.C. Berkeley, a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research, and former Deputy Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Treasury.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Meanwhile, the Ranks of the Order of the Shrill Grow Ever Larger

Thomas P.M. Barnett is perhaps the most subtle, interesting, and intelligent strategic thinker coming at the problem of American grand strategy from the right.

Most "thinkers" on the right advocate a grand strategy for America that is either:

  1. intended to make us feel moral by throwing our weight around, whether or not it actually does any good.
  2. intended to make us feel good by throwing our weight around, whether or not it is actually moral.
  3. bats--- insane--fit for some fantasy world to which there is a portal in the subbasement of the AEI, but not for this world.
  4. dedicated to the proposition that we can do enormous amounts all around the world without spending much money on defense or development.
  5. dedicated to the proposition that we don't need to worry about what the furriners do at all.
  6. or based on the assumption that the best grand strategy for America is the one that most coquettes with the annexationist fantasies of Likud.

Thomas Barnett, by contrast, holds tight to and thinks in a rational way about the Big Question: What should America be doing now to raise the odds that the world of 2100 will be one in which our descendants can live happily?

Thomas Barnett is a sane, reasonable, non-shrill guy--or was. But now he too has been driven mad. He too has joined the Ancient and Hermetic Order of the Shrill--those once sane, reasonable, and well-anchored in reality who have been driven into shrill unholy madness by the mendacity, malevolence, incompetence, and total disconnection from reality of George W. Bush, his administration, their acolytes, and their apologists.


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