Random Thoughts

Bush Agenda and Policies

My Analysis

The new Bush administration came to power beholden to the wealthy and the religious right. The candidate publicly stated that his greatest philosopher and guiding light was Jesus Christ. The well read and history knowing are aware that the intent of the founding fathers was freedom of religion of the various Protestant sects in a Protestant nation. A good recent analysis of separation of church and state by a learned professor attributes this later development of the separation policy to exclude Catholicism. The despicable terrorism of fanatic Islam and the fear of homegrown terrorists has made it possible to ram through new legislation to divert federal money to religious organizations and thus legalize discriminatory hiring by them in spite of use of federal funding. The fear of and revulsion against Islam is unlikely to engender significant vocal opposition from an intimidated citizenry or supine Congress.

The second goal is to reward the rich to generate loyal campaign money and vote banks. This is the reason for the skewed tax bill loaded to benefit higher incomes and abolition of the estate tax, which the Democrats also voted for to appease their financial backers. Subsequently they criticized it and now will play the shadowy game of obtaining partial givebacks for publicity, while returning the losses by passing a dividend exemption meant to benefit the super-rich, who will be the major recipients of the dividends.

The third goal is to massively increase defense spending to further accentuate the overwhelming
military superiority over all nations singly or in future combinations. This will lead to massive deficits necessitating cuts in other social and educational programs now and in the future. This is how Reagan's deficits forced Clinton to cut social programs.

Once again the despicable act of 9-11 is being used to advance prior agenda, policy and plan. It is obvious that the ABM defense system may be ultimately scientifically impossible, but then no harm is done, as the money will enrich entities likely to give political contributions and votes. Even if it meets partial successful deployment, it is rather unlikely that it will ever be needed to perform. In the meantime it can be justified to the fearful public as a countermeasure against an attack by a rogue virtual multi-based elusive Al Qaeda. Everyone knows that there is no fail-proof defense against hundreds or thousands of missiles and decoys that China or Russia can launch. Furthermore it is best to proceed with developing the new technology now, while those two are constrained by economic or technical difficulties.

My interpretation of the Bush policy mavens' worldview is that they realize that there is a serious possibility of Russia and China, with time could neutralize their policies. The farther ahead we are, the longer the delay and less the likelihood for them to achieve that status. The ABM policy is meant to counter states with few weapons like North Korea and serve as a defense against Pakistan or Iran having the capability of nuclear weapons and or long-range delivery systems. To counter Pakistan, we already have a presence in it and in Afghanistan with Israel and India as allies for such an event. We have finally given notice to China not to violate the MTCR agreements. It becomes imperative to have a regime change and a presence in Iraq, in case the Mullahs win out over the reformists in Iran. Then a Kurdish State could be carved out of Iraq, Syria, Turkey and Iran and the Azerbaijani north of Iran could be encouraged to merge with Azerbaijan and deprive Iran of Caspian oil bearing regions. This could even lead its southern province of Baluchistan to secede and fatally weaken Iran economically and politically, forever extinguishing its nuclear ambitions. Saudi Arabia has already cowered into allowing use of its territory by retracting the earlier bluster and would become totally and supinely subservient after we dominate Iraq. Syria would be weakened and Kuwait and the tiny Gulf States would kowtow even lower to us, the New Khalif. Turkey would be mad, but is already economically a basket case and with little hope of acceptance in the EU and another fifty billion dollar loss to its economy from the Iraq war, would have no option but to bow to the inevitable. It is highly unlikely that a large deficit running America with nation building priorities in Afghanistan and Iraq would have many leftovers to offer Turkey. This is why it is resisting a large presence of US troops on its soil, while allowing use of its airbases.

Even more importantly, as the recent willingness of France to join the war on Iraq shows, we would have a stranglehold on Europe's oil supply. France, whose oil needs are the lowest because of electricity from nuclear power, was brought in line because of oil exploration and economic losses that it would sustain. Green minded countries like Germany and the rest of Europe would be in much worse shape if they continue to oppose us. The lowered price of oil would boost the world economy and reduce our trade and current account deficits. The squeaky threats of all countries to attack the dollar would be silenced, as would OPEC's cries of denominating the price of oil in euros. China and India, if the latter can reach sufficient status despite the threats of insurgencies in Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and its own Kashmir and Eastern states, would be at the mercy of US control of their oil supplies. The Central Asian energy producing countries, which have accepted our new suzerainty, would stop flirting with Russia. Australia, New Zealand, Britain and Israel will serve as regional surrogates. India may also be offered that status with the strategy of containing China. Japan's oil dependency and lack of military or WMD capability would make it a willing financier of US deficits. Russia's criticism of North Korea and silence on Iraq reflect its current economic dependency and temporary realignment, though a falling price of oil in the future could radically alter its stance.

It was the pursuit of shortsighted policies that allowed America to wink and nod at Pakistan's pursuit of nuclear weapons with assistance from China. US saturation and infrastructure bombing theology in the 1991 Gulf War and in Serbia led India and then Pakistan to become declared nuclear states. Iran has already started the process to join the club. Since we sowed the dragon's teeth, now more will rise up from the fertile soil and become nuclear powers, like North Korea assisted by the rogue state of Pakistan. This will lead to South Korea and Japan to opt for nuclear defense eventually. In the long run even Germany may go nuclear with demands for withdrawal of American troops just like South Korea, and lead to demise of NATO after Turkey is finally refused membership in the EU. So much for the reckless bravado of our bullying lone ranger policy and new national security doctrine!

The recent policy of aiding Colombia militarily and changing the regime in Venezuela, even though it is elected, is part of controlling our neighboring oil resources. This understandable shortsighted policy however has resulted in the devastation of much of Central and South America including major resource or commodity rich large populous countries like Brazil and Argentina. The exploitation of their resources has stunted their development and we are now faced with a slew of hostile governments and populations far greater than Cuba, our pathological obsession. The Middle East has the same explosive mix of commodities like oil and gas, with lack of education or an industrial base and is equally unlikely to develop into democratic states. The populations already hate us because of policies, which are unalterable for political or strategic reasons. The military misadventure, though unlikely to turn disastrous on the battlefield, will probably increase terrorism. There is the matter of disruption of the lives of the reservists and their employers, who suffer economic dislocation, which is likely to reduce recruitment and increase employer hesitancy in hiring those who are reservists. The appeal to patriotism from those who encourage American corporations to go offshore to escape taxes and increase profits by shifting jobs to low wage countries will fall on deaf ears, once the people really wise up.

All the above thinking, though somewhat warped in my point of view, can be explained as a self-centered policy of a great power. As even Chomsky concedes states are not moral agents and as Lord Palmerston said, "Nations have no permanent friends or enemies just permanent interests." The problem is that the Clinton and Bush administrations and their NAFTA and free trade zones are exporting high paying jobs to low wage countries, which do not benefit even them, as the case of Mexico has shown. This leaves low paying below subsistence jobs to be filled by the poorly educated citizens and migrant laborers. This is why the current administration is in favor of immigration legal as well as illegal, particularly from Mexico and not from Islamic countries due to justifiable concern about internal national security. Their thinking is to have a predominant Republican voting rich upper strata and a midsize professional and technical middle class likely to vote Republican for economic reasons. This would be supported by a large struggling multitude of nearly seventy percent. The whites amongst these who are mostly rural or southern could be persuaded to vote Republican by coded appeals used by the likes of Senator Lott. The liberal educated of all colors and the overwhelming majority of African Americans and Hispanics would be evenly distributed between the almost defunct or Republicanned Democratic Party and the non-voters. Thus many have-nots have no effective franchise, this time voluntarily, but still similar to the original design of Madison and his cohorts. The rising percentage of Asian immigration is likely to benefit the country by obtaining educated professionals, with driving ambition and assimilation without ethnic enclaves and likely to vote Republican. They would be next best, but comparable to the earlier European and Jewish immigration with the added advantage that their skills or education and smaller numbers will not make them congregate for residential purposes. The blowback is increased crime and homelessness due to increasing poverty, decaying cities, migration to exurbia and greater dependency on imported oil.

As regards the connivance of the corporate entities of mega-media and their syndicated reporter flocks, there is a story I don't know who to attribute to. There was a bird, which decided not to migrate for the winter. Finally it got so cold, that it belatedly attempted to fly out, but landed in a pasture due to frozen wings. It was on the verge of resignation to death, when something warm and moist fell on it and thawed its wings. It looked up and saw the rear end of a cow. It chirped feebly and was heard by a Good Samaritan boy, who pulled it out of the cowpat. At this double deliverance it burst into birdsong and was heard by an owl, which swooped down and ate it. The moral of the story is that not everyone who shits on you is your enemy and not everyone who rescues you from shit is your friend, but if you are warm and comfortable, keep your trap shut. This is the policy adopted by the major media while renouncing their responsibility to inform and generate honest debate. Many of the readers may be tempted to say that I should follow the good advice too!  


More by :  Gaurang Bhatt, MD

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