A Heartfelt Thanks and Apology

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Today marks the 100th anniversary of the signing of the armistice that ended World War I.  We now recognize this as Veteran’s Day and extend it to all who have served in our armed forces.

America would not be what it is without these brave men. It is not an exaggeration to say the world could very realistically have been overrun by far left political ideologies, whether it was Communism or National Socialism, without the aid of the United States.  The victory of World War II may arguably be the height of American exceptionalism.  Or one could argue perhaps our greatest height was when we put a man on the moon.  All a distant dream without the bravery and sacrifice of millions of men.  You can forget about the technological boom and the Internet age as well.  For this we are eternally grateful.

It feels as though an apology is in order as well.  The hard work, toil, and sacrifices of these men and of our ancestors has put us in a position never seen before in human history.  We have access to previously unimaginable wealth and opportunity.  But with this great potential comes great responsibility, and potential downfall.  It can be too easy to become complacent.  Lazy.  Unappreciative.  Forgetful.  What have we done with the opportunity our ancestors have left for us?  Would they be proud to see how our country has turned out?  What we’ve done with it?  What they died to protect?

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One could make a very good argument that they would not be happy to see how it all turned out.  What good is it to defend your country against potential invasion only to allow them to invade in another manner just one or two generations later with nary a fight?  Or to allow the Constitution and the law to be so obfuscated that the original intent from the Founding Fathers is now completely up for reinterpretation?  Or what about rewriting history entirely?  Or to pretend this wasn’t a nation founded by God fearing men.

No.  Today we take their sacrifices for granted.  We’ve become far too comfortable.  Comfortable to the point that we forget why armies and the threat of force are needed.  So comfortable that in fact we even vilify these brave men and now women who are willing to fight and die for our freedoms.  Even worse, some now even question what American exceptionalism is, and rather than fight for ideals such as free speech many think they know better and try to police it.  We even look back at some of our greatest leaders and call them bigots, racist, evil.  Statues are torn down.  History is simply erased and forgotten, and the lessons that go along with it too.

The only way we will survive as a nation is if we start to fight back.  We’ve tried acceptance of any and all ideas.  Of multiculturalism instead of assimilation.  It doesn’t work.  They cry for tolerance and acceptance, and when we give it to them they turn it on us and try to vilify us.  Or shame us into thinking we shouldn’t be proud of our ancestry or our country.  These evil forces need to be squelched out and stopped completely.  Total victory, not tolerance, appears to be the only way to stem the tide.  We’ve practiced appeasement rather than deterrence in the cultural war for far too long.  It hasn’t worked.  Victor Davis Hanson wrote a great piece recently on the anniversary and had this to say which I think fits in nicely:

What can we learn from the failed armistice of 1918?

Keeping the peace is sometimes even more difficult than winning a war.

For an enemy to accept defeat, it must be forced to understand why it lost, suffer the consequences of its aggressions—and only then be shown magnanimity and given help to rebuild.

Losers of a war cannot pick and choose when to quit fighting in enemy territory.

Had the Allies continued their offensives in the fall of 1918 and invaded Germany, the peace that followed might have more closely resembled the unconditional surrender and agreements that ended WWII, leading to far more than just 20 years of subsequent European calm.

Deterrence prevents war.

If we continue to begrudgingly accept these toxic ideologies and ideas coming from the left, rather than fight hard and hit hard back against them, the end result will turn out much worse than the comparably minimal pain of stopping it in its tracks right away.  It’s much harder to deport somebody once they’ve embedded themselves into this country than turn them away at the border.  Or to put a hard foot down on the atrocities they try to put into children’s programming, or how they try to program our children in school.  Obamacare became much harder to stop once it was written into law.

There can be no more compromise.  The left has shown their true colors far too often for us to be fooled by it anymore.  We have to push back and give no quarter.  Now is our best shot.  We have a man in office more willing than perhaps any president of the past 100+ years to take a stand and also be big enough to be able to withstand the pressure the mainstream media and swamp throw at him.  He cannot do it alone.  Nor should he have to.  Let us do our part to make our ancestors proud, and to leave future generations better off and with a shot at the American dream as it was once imagined.  What an utter shame it would be to throw it all away in the name of multiculturalism, or virtue signaling, or whatever other guilt they try to foist on us.

The Perils of Pax Americana

Pax Americana, American Peace, was a term coined in the mold of Pax Romana and was the idea of civilizational peace amongst the more powerful nations under mostly American rule in the Western Hemisphere . The current Pax Americana is generally considered to have begun post World War II, where America was the dominant power that would act something like the world police. By and large it has worked somewhat okay, with major world wars being averted (so far) and “smaller” wars have been confined to mostly proxy wars with smaller main combatants.

But I don’t want to talk about the merits or follies of Pax Americana on the world stage. Instead, we look inward and ask how has this American peace molded society in America. Has this period of 70+ years of relative peace at least in America propelled America to ever greater heights? On the contrary, I think most people would agree America is not on an overall upward trajectory since World War II. Yes, President Trump is trying to turn that around, but there are many great dangers that continue to lurk and could continue the undoing of this great American civilization.

There are many aspects to Pax Americana that can be discussed, but today we mainly focus on how it has hurt the American people, and more specifically the American spirit. Too much of a “good” thing often ends up yielding terrible consequences. Much like a forest fire can sometimes be beneficial to clean out and make room for new growth, sometimes war or nefarious acts that directly affect us can have positive benefits. NN Taleb hammers this point home in his book Antifragile, and we see it everywhere in the natural world, especially in medicine and with our body. “That which does not kill us makes us stronger” as Nietzsche coined it. War, for all its downsides, does have many positive psychological effects as well. Usually it will unite a people. It puts into perspective what’s really important in life, and gives one more appreciation for what they have (or what they had before war) and for what’s worth preserving, fighting, and dying for. I propose that in our Pax Americana we’ve grown too soft, too comfortable, and taken our freedoms and liberties for granted for far too long. We’ve become complacent, presumptuous, forgetful, and misguided.

One of the main perils of a peace lasting too long is it’s easy to forget how and why we got there. The effect is even more pronounced when you have a failed educational system that often times barely addresses history, or changes it altogether. It is easy to take for granted one’s freedoms when it has been too long since they needed to be defended. One begins to think it is the natural order of things to be free, and consequently it becomes easy to take it for granted and assume it is easy to obtain. One could make an argument we’ve had plenty of wars since World War II that run counter to this. But the reality is all of these conflicts (save for 9/11) have been on foreign soil usually thousands of miles away. And in our modern economy we really do feel very little, if any, effect on our daily lives. If you didn’t take the time to watch the “news” you may have no idea at all that war is even going on. Contrast that to World Wars I and II, where citizens often had to ration food and fuel for the war effort. Factories were converted for military vehicles and weapons, new roles were created and women took over many duties usually saved for men. Curfews, bomb drills, and blackouts all serve as reminders on the home front that things are different, and it’s easier to appreciate what one had when it is in jeopardy. Tragedy and hardship unite people. Communities are strengthened when there is a need, and it fosters fellowship and camaraderie. These stresses to the system and daily life can have a very positive effect.  Again, I do not wish for these things, but they do give us a greater appreciation for what we have.  And unless we constantly educate and remind ourselves of what it “used to be like” during these difficult episodes, we’ll either forget them altogether or unfortunately only learn after another period of hardship.

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It’s hard to ignore the war when it hits you where you live.

Something else that comes out when there is lasting peace, at least in our civilization, is the focus turning to other social issues, often times with an over-emphasis. “Idle hands are the devil’s workshop” as the saying goes. So it is too in society. Could you imagine the current gender controversy going on during The Civil War or The Great War? You would be roundly (and rightly) completely ignored if you tried to spread the notion that there are 71 genders. The same goes with the transgender bathroom issue. Something tells me the 0.00001% of the population that is transgender wouldn’t have as much pull or have any sway towards changing legislation when hundreds of thousands or millions of people were dying yearly during a war. When there is peace, the minute comes to the forefront, and often times is overblown. And as the peace endures, it only gets worse. Again, we begin to forget why certain laws or practices were put into place in the first place, or the reasoning behind it. Today, we’ve gotten to a point where we can pervert the original intentions, as it was with fitness tests for women in the military, or the police force. Standards are changed, codes rewritten, to allow for greater openness and acceptance when the rules that were initially put in place had very rational reasons behind them.

The Immigration Act of 1965 is another example of irrational change because we forgot why it was there or undervalued its purpose. Pre-1965, America was a mostly homogeneous population, or largely consistent in its makeup since the country’s founding. It was never in doubt, never questioned. The benefits of a society of this sort were never fully appreciated or understood once the threat of war was lost. We assumed anyone could be an American, and that it wouldn’t have far reaching effects on our neighborhoods, educational system, or everyday lives. Like it or not, the majority, if not all wars, have started because of tribal differences. Whether they are racial, religious, or ideological, tribalism was at its root. Yet our hubris got the best of us and we somehow forgot this key fact. And once we opened the doors to anyone and everyone, we lost some of that unity and no longer is there a dominant population or religion to unite the people. One can harp on and on about how diversity is a strength, but the fact remains the less people have in common with each other the less likely they are to congregate or get along. Do you really think you have a better chance becoming friends with your neighbor if you speak English and they only speak Spanish or Arabic?

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Would these men be proud of what our country has become?  What they fought and died for?

Which raises another point in that we’ve completely lost our sense of self. We no longer have the pride in being American that we once had, and in fact are often times made to feel guilty to have any pride in the first place. Further, we’ve lost our sense of unity. With the blatant disregard for our immigration laws, and the agenda of pushing multiculturalism, there is no longer a push towards integration when one becomes an American. Assimilation seems to be a thing of the past. And because of this, we are losing any sense of unity as an American people. Observe a crowd watching the World Cup, or how people identify when asked where they are from or what is their background. “I’m American” is hardly ever the first answer. “I’m Mexican” or insert-race-here-with-a-dash-and-American, Mexican-American, Italian-American, etc etc. Multiculturalism in general has destroyed communities and led to civil unrest. Because we no longer try to assimilate newcomers, we’ve become more tribal than ever. Identity politics became the de facto position since Obama came into office, dividing the country on racial and religious lines. The notion of bringing in unchecked numbers of outsiders from all over the world or not seriously policing our borders during a time of war would be ludicrous and absurd. In peacetime, it’s somehow thought to be okay, as if there would be no ripple effects or changes in the fabric of society as we know it.

It’s interesting to observe that this effect isn’t uniquely American, but seems to only affect countries living under this Pax Americana. We see a crisis of identity and deterioration of society and its values in the UK, Germany, France, and most of the Western world. Contrast this to Russia or Japan. They are still proud of their country and their people. They’ve by and large preserved their sense of self. Like us, they have black marks on their history as well, but they don’t let themselves drown in guilt and self-flagellation and are still proud of who they are. Perhaps the fact that World War II was fought with a very heavy cost on their own soil has served as a longer lasting reminder to their people.

So the question remains, are we better off for Pax Americana? In 2018 we are as divided as we have ever been perhaps since 1968 or the Civil War. I am in no way advocating for some kind of war just to refresh our society. Far from it. But if we are to sustain peace and survive as a country we cannot forget our past, the values we fight for, or how and why we arrived at where we are. I’m sure many of these social fights and stands people have made in this peacetime have been with the best of intentions. But there is definitely some iatrogenic effect at work here; we most certainly seem to be doing more harm than good by intervening at all in many of these arenas. The shock and outrage of a baker not wanting to bake a cake for a gay wedding would seem a bit more petty and inconsequential if we were fighting for our way of life though, wouldn’t it?

No, I do not think we are better off. It has torn up our society, completely changed the demographic landscape, and led to a loss of American pride, which cannot be understated. Looking outwards for a moment, America as World Police has hurt our standing both in our own eyes as well as that of the world. Inserting ourselves into unjust or unnecessary wars, or wars that just plain have nothing to do with us, have left many Americans jaded, feeling guilty, and ashamed of what their country is doing. I have no doubt this is another contributing factor into why we’ve opened our doors to everyone (aside from the nefarious objectives of others in power too). Guilt, or perceived guilt, is a powerful motivator. A Vietnam or Iraq War can completely change how a country’s people view themselves.

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Are we any better off for having been in the Iraq War?  Oh right, WMDs…

Pax Americana has hurt our standing on the world stage and had deleterious effects on society on the home front. Most Americans, neo-liberals and neo-conservatives aside, would be happy if the United States re-adopted our pre-World War I foreign policy of staying out of other people’s business. It may not completely solve the problem, but it would be a start. A smaller military and global presence would have obvious benefits to our budget, and put the onus on other nations depending on us (without paying their fair share) to take care of themselves. Having skin in the game is beneficial to everyone.

There Will Be War

A new Rasmussen Poll from this past week says that nearly 1/3 of the country believes there will be Civil War here within the next five years:

Most voters fear that political violence is coming from opponents of the president’s policies, just as they did in the second year of Barack Obama’s presidency, and nearly one-in-three think a civil war is next.

Thirty-one percent (31%) of Likely U.S. Voters say it’s likely that the United States will experience a second civil war sometime in the next five years, with 11% who say it’s Very Likely. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 59% consider a second civil war unlikely, but that includes only 29% who say it’s Not At All Likely. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Democrats (37%) are more fearful than Republicans (32%) and voters not affiliated with either major party (26%) that a second civil war is at hand.

But 59% of all voters are concerned that those opposed to President Trump’s policies will resort to violence, with 33% who are Very Concerned. This compares to 53% and 28% respectively in the spring of Obama’s second year in office. Thirty-seven percent (37%) don’t share that concern, including 16% who are Not At All Concerned.

Fifty-three percent (53%) are concerned that those critical of the media’s coverage of Trump will resort to violence, with 24% who are Very Concerned. Forty-two percent (42%) are not concerned about violence from media opponents, including 17% who are Not At All Concerned.

The more glaring fact thrown in there is that nearly 60% are concerned the feral left will resort to violence.  The difference between this election cycle and Obama’s was the feral left has consistently demonstrated their violent tendencies, and the outward and very blatant calls for violence against Trump supporters is far greater than the reverse ever happened any time during Obama’s presidency.

Stock up and prepare folks.  Prepare your families.  This is one of the many reasons why we fight to preserve the second amendment.  Hopefully this can end civilly but I worry more and more that this is no possible.  The gap is becoming too wide to bridge.  We can’t even agree on enforcing our own damn laws anymore.  Given that we’re the ones stocking up and preparing ourselves for this, I like our chances.