History's End

History will end only when Man does

Location: United States
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  • Friday, July 29, 2005

    Issues in 2008

    What issues do you think will be important in the 2008 Presidential Election?

    I got to thinking on what they could be today, and felt I should ask around what others thought, while I tried to compose possible issues on my own. Perhaps tomorrow I will post my own thoughts.


    Friday, July 22, 2005

    The Threat Revealed: Part 3

    What have I been trying to say so far? Well, it was touched upon by Wretchard of the Belmont Club.

    Although the fight against terrorism has been called the Global War on Terror, in practice it is being fought locally, often over specific issues, in a variety of countries.

    Wretchard later clarifies this somewhat:
    But then, Islamic militants have used a variety of local issues -- from Kashmir to Timor; from Mindanao secession to returning to Granada -- to advance their own agenda. Viewed up close the "bloody borders of Islam" consist as much of local political conflict as they do of the worldwide issues like Iraq or the restoration of the Global Caliphate. On the level of ideology the fight may have been between an 8th century religious creed and the democratic ideal, but its local manifestation is always going to be Bush against Kerry; Aznar against Zapatero.

    This covers the superstructure of what I have been trying to explain, namely, the internationalization of the local. Globalization has brought the world together, and in so doing, it has enabled the thugs of the world to unite as never before. As Wretchard explains, Islamists in different nations may share similar ideologies, but their primary motivation differs from nation to nation, region to region. This, however, transcends the Islamists, and rather moves into the category of all of those opposed to the current path being set by globalization. Chavez in Venezuela is just as much opposed to it as Bin Laden in Saudi Arabia, and both take steps to fight it in their backyards. Their methods differed, of course. Chavez took control of his nation as the step to fight globalization and its tenets within, while Bin Laden struck at what he saw as the source of those tenets, the United States of America. Both are in fact fighting the same war, against the same enemy, which could loosely be termed liberal democracy, or perhaps, the anglo-saxon liberal tradition. It is more than just anglo-saxonism, of course. It is also Judeo-Christian, Greco-Roman as well. But whatever the name, both Chavez, Bin Laden, and even the oligarchs in China have an enemy in it. And they fight it as well, simply using different strategies.

    The irony, of the darkest kind, of the situation is that globalization has provided the weapons by which its enemies may attack , and perhaps even destroy, it. The Internet, a globalist concept created in the ultimate globalist state, America, provides the ultimate in communications. Anyone, anywhere in the world with a phone line and an ISP can coordinate with anyone else across the globe. The internet, besides assisting shoppers and pornography seekers (not its primary purpose by far, but trust capitalism to find productive uses for anything), allows enemies of globalization to organize without ever meeting. Using forums and message boards, they can trade ideas, plans, tips and conviction. The Axis Powers in World War Two could never coordinate as well as foes of globalization can now, through the very tools created by their enemy. If it hasn't happened already, it will happen soon, but the internet allows foes of globalization like Chavez and bin Laden to recognize in globalization an enemy that must be fought. Each has their own reasons for fighting globalization, for it poses a different threat to each of them, but the enemy is the same. So they will band together, loosely at first, but who knows how close it could get before the end. Desperation can be a powerful force indeed.

    Any group of people can use the forces of globalization to strike their perceived foes. Suicide bombers don't have to be Islamists. They can be Tamali Tigers for instance, and could easily become Chinese or South American fanatics as well. The willingness to die for the cause isn't solely an Islamist trait. Any local issue can become global when fanatics have access to online plans for weapons, have access to high speed transportation like airplanes, and can propagate their message across the world through sympathetic media. The greater threat is the ability of globalization to empower its foes as never before. The Islamists are perhaps the first, and are certainly the most visible. They will not be the last. Many powers have reason to fear democratic liberalism. China and Russia among them. Putin and his goons might not be able to win, and thus might not really fight at all, but wouldn't bet on it. China will almost certainly fight, of that I am sure. How they will is uncertain, but at some point globalization will be too much of a threat for them to allow it to continue unabated. And isolationism isn't an effective tactic, as they have seen with North Korea. No, I expect a rancid nationalism from China. Globalization has helped modernize their state, and it has spawned other foes of globalization which they can empower themselves, the proxy war is not a thing of the past. Where all of this is leading I cannot say with certainty. My gut tells me it isn't anywhere good. This is not the end, nor is it the beginning of the end. I am not even sure if we are at the end of the beginning. This war has only just begun.


    Wednesday, July 20, 2005

    Beam Us Up

    James Doohan has died. May he rest in peace. Few know the "Scotty" took part in the invasion of Normandy on D-Day. That makes him a true hero, film and TV credits aside. He will be missed by many.


    Saturday, July 16, 2005

    Unlikely Searches

    These days, most of my "readers" come via a search engine such as Google. And it must say, some of the searches seem to be truly unlikely, at least, in the fact that they lead to my site. Especially fascinating are the non-English links. I must admit, I rather wish I was fluent in multiple langues, it would be interesting to know what they are looking for.


    Tuesday, July 12, 2005

    The Spirt of Nelson Lives On

    So far the Brits appear to have carried themselves Magnificently. Rather than fold like the Spanish, they showed the backbone which I had long hoped was still present. Renewed hope now fills me that the terrorists aims of subterfuge in Europe will be that much harder.

    In other news, the second part of the series I am working on should be done by tomorrow.


    Saturday, July 09, 2005

    The Threat Revealed: Part 2

    Threats Less Easily Noticed

    China has been rather quiet lately, but that doesn't mean it has been playing nice. Far from the contrary, China has been building up its military in an almost unprecedented manne. Its military now is acquiring capabilities that existed for the US military in the 1980s, and I personally believe it will enter 90's era tech by the end of the decade. China is a nationalistic nation, controlled by an unelected bureaucracy whose sole goal at the moment is to stay in power, and there is little, if anything, they won't do to stay in power. China's imperialist goals, and they are imperialist, mind you, will soon bring it strongly into conflict with its neighbors. Russia, the Koreas, Japan, Vietnam and other nations all share borders with, or are very close to, China. I strongly suspect that any conflicts that arise with this nation will be resource related, as a strong input of resources is necessary to keep China's economy moving forward, and perhaps even simply afloat. The Chinese know this, and they also know that the biggest obstacle to their acquisition of more resources is the United States. We are their principle foe, whether we recognize it or not. The Middle Kingdom may thus very well support agents hostile to the US, indirectly most of the time, but perhaps directly in special circumstances. Don't worry about China as Red China, the Great Communist Threat. Rather, worry about the New Chinese Empire, an empire that is just now being born, and whose rise from infancy may very well bring it into conflict with the US.

    Russia now doesn't arise nearly as much interest as it did in the past. The end of the Cold War directed the attention of all but the most paranoid, or alert, away from Mother Russia. However, all is not well there. "President" Putin has been setting up his own one-party democracy, much like that existing in Japan, which is a democracy in name but not really in fact. While he has not had the Constitution changed to allow him to run again, term limits prevent this, I suspect it may only be a matter of time. If not Putin himself, certainly a puppet or close friend will take this place at the head of one of the world's nuclear powers. Russia itself isn't a huge threat right now to nations not next to its borders. Its military, once the second strongest in the world, is now lucky to be in the top 10. Only its considerable nuclear arsenal keeps it up there. The country is dying as well. Demographics fortell its eventual doom, barring a population boom which seems unlikely at this point. So why then is Russia a threat? Enabling. Russia itself doesn't pose a major threat, but Russian arms and technology sales have the potential to create problems all across the world. Whether it is with nations like Iran, or Venezuela, Russia still retains the capability to promote instability, as well support negative global forces. Also, the threat of a nuke slipping into the wrong hands leaves Russia up there in the list of potential threats.

    Few people consider Venezuela to be a global threat. Why would it be? Its military isn't in the top ten, and it doesn't have nuclear weapons or global political clout. But that doesn't mean that Hugo Chavez isn't a threat. Far from it. The fact that few people are keeping their eyes on him means that Chavez can get away with quite a lot, and he has already done much. Venezuela is probably no longer a democracy any more, Chavez's goons have too much sway. So how can he be dangerous? For one, Venezuela exports a lot of oil, much of it going to the US. A halt to exports, plus pressure put on other OPEC countries, could damage the US economy. Second, Chavez hates the neo-liberalism which the US has supported in South America, especially in Chile. He is a radical socalist who can easily fund guerilla movements in all of South America with the funds obtained by oil sales. Chavez could easily destablize South America, which could have numerous negative effects for the US. First off, it could damage the economy. Secondly, it could distract the US from other areas of global concern. And thirdly, it could provide cover for terror groups to set up shop in regions with little or no government control, or perhaps under the aeigis of hostile governments. All in all, he is far more dangerous than most people realize.

    Now, this was all mostly background. I will try and explain my true thoughts a little latter.


    Thursday, July 07, 2005

    Showing Worth

    I must admit to a morbid curiosity to see how the Brits react to the savage attacks of today. Always something of a Anglophile, I have been worried in recent years that England has become too European, and that it no longer has the traits that made England great in its day. Perhaps now, in reaction to a tragedy, we can get a glimpse of the true English soul we haven't had in a long time. Let it show bright indeed.


    Friday, July 01, 2005


    I must say, I am surprised that Sandra Day O'Connor would be the first to resign. I thought that Rehnquist would be first. I am sure that there is some strategy to all of this, and I think I may have an idea. O'Connor is more moderate than Rehnquist. Bush has been having serious trouble appointing judges. His team may have decided that they will have an easier time, at first, of appointing a moderate to replace O'Connor than appointing a conservative to replace Rehnquist. Once they have replaced her post, they perhaps believe it will be easier to put a conservative on the court.

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