August 11, 2008

None of Our Friggin’ Beeswax

It’s tragic to see Orthodox Christians killing each other, especially in a region where they were once jointly persecuted by an atheist dictatorship. We should all pray for peace in Georgia. That said, it’s satisfying to see Vladimir Putin resist the irresponsible—indeed, insane—attempt by West to encircle his country with client states—with the goal of joining them all, through NATO, to the U.S. in a war alliance. Make no mistake, if American interventionists had gotten their way and already incorporated Georgia into NATO, we would now be at war with a nuclear-armed Russia.

Christians in the audience—and other fans of the Golden Rule—should think about this: How would Americans feel if, during a political crisis in the U.S., the Russian government made war alliances with Mexico, Canada, Cuba, Jamaica, and the Philippines—pledging to each of them that it would go to war in their defense? Do unto others as you have them do unto you….

To reject interventionism, there’s no need to retreat into a national selfishness, shrugging our shoulders in apathy at the sufferings of others. Instead, we should ground our resistance to American meddling in humility: We lack the knowledge, the wisdom, the prudence, to micromanage every other country on this earth.

Heck, we’re not doing very well running our own. Our banks are on the verge of failing, our deficit is out of control, our major industries are in decline, our leaders are unresponsive to the basic wishes of voters. (Most Americans want to get out of Iraq and restrain immigration: Why are we faced with a Soviet-style election between two different front-men for the status quo?)

In other words, we have a number of the earmarks of a “failed state” in the making. What guarantees our global dominance is no longer a robust economy, but a massive nuclear arsenal designed to obliterate civilians, and a conventional defense budget bigger than the budgets of every other country on the face of the earth combined. In other words, we’re living like nutjob survivalists in the woods—refusing to fix our latrines and maxing out our credit cards to stock up on guns we’ll never use.

Given this reality, we might just be better off minding our own business for a while.

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