Who Will Bomb More?

I am wondering what kind of awful foreign policy Trump will have. It’s bad so far but to be frank, how many wars will he start? How many will he escalate?

It’s deeply ironic (and quite frankly fucked up) that Obama got the Nobel Peace Prize. Granted he got it before he started five more wars. And we know the United States went from two wars to SEVEN under Obama.

Looking up when Obama started these wars, I found the following:

  • Syria – September 22, 2014
  • Libya – March 19, 2011
  • Yemen – circa March 2015
  • Somalia – circa September 2016
  • Pakistan – started before with Bush but severely escalated under Obama

I looked more into the war (or bombing) of Pakistan. I found some interesting stuff on Wikipedia concerning the number of drone strikes. And since I’m all about the numbers and facts, we found that Obama has droned Pakistan 373 times during his presidency. Trump has only droned Pakistan five times this year (numbers as of September 17, 2017).

Calculating it out, every day Obama was in office he has droned Pakistan roughly 0.12 times. Trump had been in office 240 days on September 17, 2017. Doing the math, Obama at the same point (240 days) of his presidency, he droned Pakistan 30.65 times. Take this and compare it to Trump’s only five times.

It’s so sad the United States has started so many wars and has bombed so many countries. Our tax dollars are going to bombing poor people rather than fixing us.

I thought Obama was going to be a peace president but, unfortunately, that wasn’t the case. There’s not much proof Trump will be a good president as far as foreign policy and starting wars goes either but these numbers make me hopeful. He hasn’t started any wars yet.

Why America Shouldn’t Be Considered A First World Country

Everybody thinks the US is a first world country. However some things in this country make it less than great. I think that America isn’t really a first world, but somewhere between second and first. We show a lot of the same behavior or characteristics of a country that isn’t first class. Here are some examples:

Healthcare

We’re way behind a lot of other countries who are not first world; like Cuba. The Affordable Care Act did great things but we’re not there yet. Every citizen isn’t guaranteed healthcare yet. Our life expectancy (#51) and infant mortality rates (#50) are still higher than a lot of other countries. Even some which we consider worse.

Women In Power

According to the Inter-Parliamentary Union, the US is 80th in the world in women in parliaments. There are only 20 senators who are women and 79 (or 18%) are in the house of representatives. We still haven’t had a female vice president or president. Even the Philippines has had a women president.

Incarceration Rate

We’re number one in prisoners per capita at 716 per 100,000 population; behind Russia at 490 per 100,000 population. We blow Mexico out of the water. They only have 209 per 100,000 population. We’re less than 5% of the population yet we have almost 25% of the prison population of the world. First world countries start around 100 on the list, but we’re number one in incarceration rate.

Birth Rate

We still have a lot of kids in this country which isn’t like a first world country. And it’s really funny too. Other countries have a lot of incentives for their citizens to have kids, but not in the US. We don’t even get paid maternity leave. The only thing guaranteed for us is under Clinton’s FMLA; and that’s unpaid.

Guns

We have the highest number of guns per capita (and the highest gun deaths). We have 88 guns per 100 people and 10 gun deaths per 100,000 population. Switzerland is behind us with less than half our number (45.7 per 100 people).

Income Inequality

We’re not doing well here either. We’re worse than countries like Egypt, Niger, Iraq, Iran. Even India and Ethiopia have better income equality than we do. Our gini coefficient is at 40.8.

Military

The United States is always high when it comes to military expenditures. We’re number one in defense spending. In fact, according to the World Bank, we spend 4.2% of GDP on military. We’re in the company of all third world and below nations. The UK, only 2.4%.

Let’s See How Rediculous This Sounds

As we prepare to enter or affect yet another region in the middle east, it’s nice to know that after 150+ people died at the hands of an evil dictator the US will be there… Never mind that when thousands upon thousands were being killed by genocide in Darfur we didn’t go in or try to help them but whatever.

I guess we never crossed some “red line” with the number of deaths via gun violence in this country to warrant something to actually be done.

The right likes to use that argument for gun violence “guns don’t kill people, people kill people”. How about for chemical weapons… “chemical weapons don’t kill people, people kill people”?

Maybe is it that chemical weapons don’t give us more freedom but guns do?

Or how about “the only way to stop a bad guy with a chemical weapon is with a good guy with a chemical weapon”?

I’m confounded.

National Defense Authorization Act

Why the hell is the so called “liberal media” not talking about this? This bill gives the military the ability to detain and arrest US citizens indefinitely who are suspected of terrorism… on US SOIL and WITHOUT TRIAL.

Obama, veto this bill. This bill is sick. How many more liberties do we have to give away in the name of terrorism? Especially when we’ve killed bin Laden and seem to have the whole “terrorism” thing under control.

If we keep taking away the rights of our citizens, there will be no country to protect. And let us not forget the wise words of Benjamin Franklin: “Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.”

Thoughts On Osama bin Laden

It cost the United States $1.2 trillion dollars, ten years, and over 900,000 deaths to finally get Osama bin Laden. Granted not all of the money or treasure was used just to get him. We spent needlessly in places where he was not and for reasons that don’t make any sense.

Now that he’s dead, who won? We as Americans are still scared. We still have to go through full body scans and shoe checks at the airport. We still have the Patriot Act which takes away our rights as Americans if we were to be called a terrorist. We still torture. We still have Gitmo opened. We still have two wars going on that had nothing to do with bin Laden.

The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and basically everything we did post 9/11, we made al Qaeda stronger. Instead of one big branch, they separated. Store owners, ordinary citizens, and people who have nothing to do with bin Laden can be al Qaeda. They saw us steamroll into their country, killing their people; we breed that hate. We responded to their violence with more violence.

I do have to point out, I appreciate how they buried bin Laden at sea, like an Islamic funeral; instead of lord knows what some people in this country would have preferred.

However, I’m sure us cheering in every major city in the US that he was dead angered some too. (Remember how we saw some Muslims cheering that September 11th happened?) Why can’t we be better than that? If we’re so “exceptional” how come we torture, how come we celebrate our enemies deaths? I believe that just gives them more reasons to hate us.

Obama’s Afghanistan Surge Speech Prediction

If you haven’t heard, Obama is planning to implement a “surge” in Afghanistan. He’s going to announce his plan to send more than 30,000 additional troops (and who knows how many government contractors) to the war next Tuesday.

My prediction for Obama’s speech is another “Bush” like speech:

  • The war is necessary
  • We need to change the strategy in Afghanistan (meaning things remain the same)
  • Our security as a nation relies on it
  • This war is not open ended
  • This war is the “good war”
  • We want to hand responsibility to the Afghans ASAP
  • Benchmarks (that probably won’t matter nor will they be met)
  • How we plan to work with other nations to ensure a stable Afghanistan
  • We need to “finish the job”
  • The next few months (or years) will “demand more patience, sacrifice, and resolve”

The speech will also NOT contain the following:

  • An exit strategy
  • A time line
  • How much more this war will cost
  • The goal
  • How much strain this war is putting on our already strained military
  • In what way this war is tied to our national security

This war is a drain. Obama is sending every other brigade left to Afghanistan leaving us with very few units. We need to cut our losses, end both wars, and send our troops home where they belong.

It never ceases to amaze me how the Congress and the president can be so willing to escalate a war with all the problems we’re facing here. We’re told we have to accept cutbacks on health care and our infrastructure in order to help balance the budget, yet every time there’s a war bill, Congress rubber stamps it. I don’t understand how we have to compromise on health care yet the wars have no compromise. They can be funded open endedly.

I wrote to my congressmen, Ben Cardin, asking him to help push HR 676 (Universal Single Payer Health Care for the US). He wrote back to me:

As a member of the Senate Budget Committee, I firmly believe that any reform proposals we enact must be fully paid for, and the budget resolution passed by Congress requires that.

What about the wars, Senator?