A country that can no longer defend itself is happy to provide millions in foreign aid to the world’s worst tyrants.
(Page 2 of 2)
I said Britain seemed determined to drag the developing world down with it, and while I admit this is somewhat hyperbolic, it is not entirely so. This aid tends to be not merely useless, it is actively destructive. At best, the aid removes incentives for the local rulers to develop their own economies and tax-bases, at worse it will help finance, or make other monies available to finance, armies, secret police and torture chambers. All this is also, of course, in addition to the aid contributed by non-Governmental organizations, whose quality is extremely variable.
Also, this is despite desperate economic problems at home. Although the exact numbers are hard to know, there are repeated reports of old-age pensioners freezing to death because of the cost of fuel bills, which are set to soar again.
The care of inmates of aged-care homes has been the cause of one scandal after another and I would guess that a push for euthanasia to save public money in the near future is all but inevitable. I will try not to again so soon mount my hobby horse of Britain’s gutted defense forces, except to mention that a few years ago it had more men in Germany, in the Army of the Rhine, than it has in all three services combined today. I have also been informed that the four aircraft defending the Falkland Islands are for ground-support, not air-defense — in other words the Falklands defenses are even weaker than I realized.
Many other thing adds up to an appalling loss of national self-respect, symbolized by the loss of even the Royal Yacht, Britannia, hulked in Scotland as a relic, and perched as it were, on top of the rubble of cultural ruin. Refitting it to modern standards would have cost, according to one estimate, about 11 million pounds, a small fraction of the amount which has been squandered on the useless Millennium Dome or will be squandered on the Olympic Games (the best British Olympics, the “austerity games” held directly after the war, were run on a shoe string).
I am prepared for a chorus of voices claiming this is not the time — if there is ever a time — to be spending money on as Royal Yacht (unlike Pakistani submarines), but nations live in part by symbols that reinforce national pride and self-respect, and Britannia, before it became a symbol of defeat, despair and decline, did this beautifully (the left hated it). As a bit of swank it was usually commanded by an Admiral rather than a mere Captain.
It has also had a record of practical use as a floating trade exhibition, and conference venue — the Royal Family actually used it only for a small part of the time — and refurbishing it would have given a little valuable work to Britain’s moribund shipyards, with their miles of empty and derelict docks and slipways.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?