Monday, May 2, 2011

VDHanson - nope, no USA decline

America is joyful today after hearing Usama Bin Laden was finally killed. THANK YOU TO PRESIDENT BUSH and the USA military for their perseverance in tracking, finally locating this terrorist and putting him out of the world's misery.

Earlier today I read an uplifting article by Victor Davis Hanson. He points out America is NOT in "decline" even though people in Washington seem to want that to be the case.

They will all get voted out. America will recover and be all she can be... once again. From the VDH article:

"A recent report in The New Yorker suggested that the Obama’s administration’s weird sort of/sort of not foreign policy is now gleefully self-described as “leading from behind.” Not exercising leadership is a reflection, the article suggests, of Obama’s view that the U.S. is both disliked and in decline. Decline?"

"President Obama, listen carefully. By every benchmark, this should be an American century. Our known fossil fuel reserves are soaring, as new finds of coal, natural gas, oil, tar sands, and oil shale keep growing, not shrinking. Demographically, we are expanding; Europe, Japan, and China are shrinking.

We do not have the strikes of Europe, the violence of the Middle East, the state oppression of China. India has religious, social, and caste tensions unknown in the U.S. American farmland is the most productive in the world, its farmers the most gifted and innovative. We inherited a vast, developed infrastructure; out duty is to improve and expand it, not, as our ancestors had to, start from scratch building a Hoover Dam, intercontinental railroad, or port facilities in Oakland.

I remember growing up in the late 1950s and early 1960s, and the sheer amount of wealth creation since then staggers the imagination. I recall my parents taking me in 1962 to a dinner at a judge’s “mansion”: it was a 2000 sq. ft. ranch house in north Fresno — with three, repeat three, bathrooms — an unheard of thing at that time — and a 15-foot kidney shaped swimming pool to boot! The sort of elite home that is solidly now middle class.

iPhones, Facebook, and Microsoft are culturally U.S. to the core; construction, computers, oil drilling, and refining are still American premier sciences. For all the talk of China, it would take the Chinese thirty years to acquire the expertise to launch and employ 10 effective carrier groups. To the degree an India or China is successful, it is because of emulation of the West, and the United States in particular. When I have my solo lunches in the new courtyard at the Stanford Business School, I stare at the number of foreigners networking in this global training station, where the world’s elites flock to shell out tens of thousands for the expertise and signature degree.

We see in the misadventure in Libya what the Europeans do without the U.S. military. Japan’s dense population and centralized mode of transportation, housing, and industry make it serially vulnerable to natural disasters in a way a dispersed, decentralized, and huge America is not. Our poor suffer far more from obesity than malnutrition; diabetes and clogged arteries, not scurvy and rickets, are the plagues of the underclass. Is driving a Kia that much less comfortable than a Mercedes, is hot water in Trump Towers hotter than a mile from my house in federally subsidized apartments? Does a middle seat on a 737 mean you are tortured and exploited while the “rich” zoom by in a Gulfstream? My local Wal-Mart parking lot yesterday in Selma — poorest section of one of the poorest counties in the most bankrupt state in America — had 3 BMWs, 3 Mercedes, 1 Jaguar, 2 Metros, 16 Camrys, 13 Accords, 21 newer double-cab pickups, and lots of late-model Civics, Nissans, and Kias among 82 cars. I counted them for this article; my statistically “poor” town did not look like Dickensian London. Wealth has been distributed to millions in a way once thought impossible. When did driving a Civic make you poor because someone else was driving a BMW, or why was living in a downtown Fresno condo unfair if someone else had one about the same size and with the same accoutrements in Santa Monica with a view of the ocean?

I could go on, so why does Mr. Obama see us in decline? Is it a wish rather than a descriptive assessment?"

GREAT article. Read the rest here. She may be slightly 'down' and getting a good kick in the guts by communists in charge 'o' stuff... but in no way is America out.


  1. I've been a reader of Hanson's military history books for several years.He has the true historian's perspective....

  2. hi tjones, yes VDH often writes really excellent stuff... thanks for stopping by :)