Remember Teddy Roosevelt? What a great line: “Speak softly, and carry a big stick.” It is the essence of what should be American foreign policy. We are the world’s only super-power. We prevailed in the long run over the Soviet Union and in the process demonstrated to any who would watch the inherent superiority of the free market over the planned economies of Communism. We fought wars when necessary, defended others freedoms when petitioned, and modeled the best that man has yet achieved. When wars were over, we did not build empire. We rebuilt nations and left them strong and economically robust. We did not need to speak loudly, because any rational leader knew we possessed a big stick which we would wield when necessary.
The core is the cliché of leadership. You don’t need to like me. I only need for you to respect me. If my actions are honorable and consistent, just and fair, equitable and selfless, you will understand when you experience my wrath. Like the strict and caring parent, you won’t always like me. You won’t like me when you don’t get the latest PlayStation or your first Harley-Davidson or that piercing and tattoo which will make you so “in” with the group. But, you will know that it isn’t animosity or arbitrariness that motivates me. It’s my judgment on what is best for you in the long run. And, you will respect me.
That is what makes the bleating we hear on the campaign trail about the rest of the world not liking us any more so pathetic. We offended them by aggressively punishing those who did us serious damage on 9/11. We didn’t reach out to the terrorists with understanding and sympathy. We didn’t cave, we kicked ass. Our bad. But, frankly Scarlett…
Two items in today’s Morning Snooze:
Who Cares? A Dallas News poll shows Europeans think squishy Obama is going to be so nice and will love him in return.
So What? A group of liberal editorial writers are certain that inexperience and compassion will trump responsible wielding of power in our election.
Do I have this correctly? Am I supposed to give a damn about what the sniveling Europeans think as they march in typical lock-step into the abyss of socialism while entertaining the influx of radical Islamists who undermine their culture while plotting their host nation’s destruction? The Euros think Obama will be so much more diplomatic than McCain and therefore they will again like the United States. I guess this is a classic example of misery loving company.
We don’t need affection to thrive. We do deserve respect. We deserve respect for what we contribute to the rest of the world. We deserve respect for what we have done on behalf of others in a couple of World Wars. We deserve respect for our foreign aid and charitable medical and food contributions. We deserve respect for tsunami relief and standing by off the coast of Myanmar while the local national leadership tried to spin our relief effort as something they themselves deserved credit for. We deserve respect for preserving Israel. We deserve respect for integrating the former Warsaw Pact nations into the structure of the North Atlantic Alliance. We deserve respect for our technology development and industrial co-production agreements that raise the global standard of living. We deserve respect for fifty years of turning the other cheek at the United Nations. We deserve respect for doing what is necessary against world terrorism despite the sniveling of European apologists.
You don’t need to like me.