War as stimulus


Erik Kain

Erik writes about video games at Forbes and politics at Mother Jones. He's the contributor of The League though he hasn't written much here lately. He can be found occasionally composing 140 character cultural analysis on Twitter.

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26 Responses

  1. Avatar Jaybird says:

    We need to be bombing the manufacturing bases of the countries that we import the most things from.

    We’ll get jobs back in no time.Report

  2. Avatar Elvis Elvisberg says:

    for reasons I cannot explain, war is always more popular than any other sort of public spending.

    I’m inclined to think that, since the Southern Strategy capitalized on anti-government resentment over desegregation, “populism” has come to hold that government action is unserious and counterproductive, unless the government is targeting out groups by bombing them or building prisons.Report

  3. Avatar Jason Kuznicki says:

    War proves that we are a great nation. What do you have against greatness?Report

  4. Avatar ThatPirateGuy says:

    I think the worst part of this is I’m not even outraged at Broder, heck I’m not even surprised.

    I mean it is horrible and I can only hope that no one listens to him but I am so used to hearing this style of poo that it just doesn’t register anymore.Report

  5. Avatar gregiank says:

    This is example #3928374 of how if you are a beltway insider/ serious person you can say something as dumb as bag full of hammers and have it be printed in a major paper.Report

  6. Avatar North says:

    The man is as crazy as a monkey on a tricycle. Crazier even.Report

  7. Avatar Mike Schilling says:

    Beyond that, it is simply the arrogance of a man with no risk, no chance of himself paying the price for this hideous, immoral, incoherent hawkish nonsense, no chance he’ll take a bullet for his stupidity.

    B-b-but, “chickenhawk” is a childish slander. i know this because Dick Cheney and Richard Perle said so.Report

  8. Avatar mark boggs says:

    I thought all war spendings were off-budget items, basically making them free. Is that not correct?Report

  9. Avatar Koz says:

    “Nor would it deter the Iranian nuclear program”

    Really? Heard much from the Iraqi WMD program recently?Report

    • Avatar E.D. Kain in reply to Koz says:

      @Koz, You mean the nonexistent one that we went into Iraq to deter under false pretenses? Yeah, no actually. Do you have even the tiniest comprehension of the different sort of war we’d be in with Iran than the one we faced in Iraq? Any inkling of the sort of enemy we’d be up against? While also still embroiled in Iraq and Afghanistan, with North Korea waiting on the sidelines? I mean, it’s one thing to be hawkish and naive, but a war with Iran would be the height of stupidity.Report

      • Avatar Koz in reply to E.D. Kain says:

        Erik, do you have any comprehension what it takes to maintain a nuclear weapons program?

        Beyond that, it helps to have a coherent train of thought. Nowhere am I suggesting we should go to war with Iran, and there’s lots of reasons to say we shouldn’t.

        But to say that a war wouldn’t disrupt Iran’s nuclear program is manifest ignorance, unless you happen to know something the rest of the world doesn’t.Report

    • Avatar Barry in reply to Koz says:

      @Koz, Gawd-frakkin’s d*mn – are you stupid, or simply still lying?Report

  10. Avatar Kyle Cupp says:

    Why is war more popular than other kinds of public spending? If I may venture a guess, I’d say it has something to do with the narratives underlying our spending practices. Depending on who you talk to, domestic spending is characterized as a benevolent service we provide the less fortunate, as sinister plot to redistribute wealth through government thievery, or as something in between. We find several prominent narratives at play here. With “defense” spending, though, there’s really just one dominant underlying narrative, and it depicts spending as a good, patriotic, and necessary service that we, the sole superpower of the world, must provide for our safety. Yes, there are critics of war, but they are for the most part not the ones writing the checks. Before becoming president, Obama was safe criticizing the Iraq War, but only because he also fashioned himself as a reliable warrior president in the public imagination. He campaigned on increasing American military presence in the world, even though he considered Iraq a bad allocation of resources. A Republican can win as a critic of domestic spending, and a Democrat can win as a supporter of domestic spending, but neither can win as a critic of defense spending itself. Criticizing defense spending criticizes an image of the U.S. that’s well established and shared among the establishment and the population.Report

    • @Kyle Cupp, I’d say it has more to do with political market failure and the lack of a willingness to try to correct it.

      Many people and politicians who want far lower levels of military spending are afraid to get behind this cause because, despite it’s sanity, it is a major political loser. Like being “soft on drugs”, or “soft on crime”, being labeled “soft on terror” is something from which a politician could never recover; as long as politicians want to be reelected and people remain uncritical and only passively involved in politics, the wars on drugs, crime, and terror will continue.Report