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Is this what you voted for?

The dust hasn’t even settled after the election, which saw significant gains for Republicans, but already at least one of them is calling for yet another war. Senator Lindsay Graham sees going to war with Iran “not to just neutralize their nuclear program, but to sink their navy, destroy their air force and deliver a decisive blow to the Revolutionary Guard, in other words neuter that regime.”

Not content with one more physical war, Graham also seemed to be calling for a trade war with China, criticizing them for their “cheating” currency manipulation. Meanwhile, NY City mayor Michael Bloomberg criticized Congresscritters who want to blame everything on China:

If you look at the U.S., you look at who we’re electing to Congress, to the Senate—they can’t read. I’ll bet you a bunch of these people don’t have passports. We’re about to start a trade war with China if we’re not careful here, only because nobody knows where China is. Nobody knows what China is.

I think in America, we’ve got to stop blaming the Chinese and blaming everybody else and take a look at ourselves … There’s a country on the other side of the world that is taking their taxpayers’ dollars, and trying to sell subsidized things so we can buy them cheaper, and have better products, and we’re going to criticize that?

Meanwhile, the Chinese government is investing $15 billion to create an electric vehicle industry there, to move China off of oil. They are also furiously building airports and high speed rail, and just placed an order for 128 DNA sequencers to create the largest institute in the world for doing stem cell and genetics research. What are we doing with our money? We spend 10 times as much money as China on our military. Oh, and there’s all the interest we have to pay China for the money they have lent us to finance our national debt so we can give tax breaks to billionaires.



  1. Bard wrote:

    Yes, the ever threatening Iran Navy, which according to Wikipedia “In terms of major surface ships, Iran’s three destroyers are over 50 years old and are kept in material reserve at Bushehr. The Iranian Navy does not include capital ships; their largest ships are five frigates and three corvettes, all of which are armed with modern anti-ship missiles.” or the Air Force which has a whoping 331 Aircraft. Just for Comparison the US Navy has 55 Destroyers and 3,700 Aircraft. Obviously we should fear Iran.

    Monday, November 8, 2010 at 6:08 am | Permalink
  2. patriotsgt wrote:

    “and there’s all the interest we have to pay China for the money they have lent us to finance our national debt ”

    I don’t know if it’s true, but I read somewhere that China makes enough in interst payments from us to fund it’s entire military. Any body else hear that?

    The last thing we need is another war, unless Mr. Graham would like to throw on some body armor, pick up a weapon and stand a post. Our Airforce and Navy can put down any threat Iran could ever pose in the nuclear sense. If we can’t, just get out of the way and Israel will take care of it.

    Monday, November 8, 2010 at 6:50 am | Permalink
  3. Jeff wrote:

    With combat operations winding down in Iraq, and Afghanistan dropping out of the news, America needs a new war to stimulate the economy of fear. People need new enemies to make them feel unsafe so that they’re willing to put up with invasions of privacy, ridiculous security measures on every part of public life, and overblown defense budgets.

    In short, war drives people to accept the Conservative model of government and society. China and Iran are just the new scapegoats.

    Monday, November 8, 2010 at 7:32 am | Permalink
  4. Iron Knee wrote:

    PatriotSgt, I actually think Graham’s comments are all about Israel. Israel feels threatened by Iran and is really trying to get us to go along with an invasion. Graham is just scoring points with the Israel lobby.

    Monday, November 8, 2010 at 10:51 am | Permalink
  5. Patricia Andrews wrote:

    This comment from Bloomberg hits the nail on the head. Why are we determined to sink into a morass of national stupiduty???? Are there any “grownups” left in our governing class? Right on, Iron Knee!

    Monday, November 8, 2010 at 11:34 am | Permalink
  6. patriotsgt wrote:

    IK – you could be right on, my only thought is Israel has never sought our approval (at least publicly) on military action in the past and I think if Netanyahu did, it would seal his political fate. Graham on the other hand is blowing with the polls. He probably thinks someone would support him for President, but he’s delusional. The only person he represents is himself.
    What is more likely happenning is artificial chest thumping to make Iran think we would attack, as an added deterrent along with the sanctions. I don’t think, even among the right wing, that the country would support war with Iran. Another 2 month war followed by 10 years of occupation? If so, I’d put in my retirement paperwork.

    Monday, November 8, 2010 at 11:59 am | Permalink
  7. Iron Knee wrote:

    You have a good point. It may be that with our current wars going oh-so-well, other countries (especially ones run by lunatics) may be emboldened to think that they could get away with building nuclear weapons, because they figure we don’t have the stomach to stop them. In that case, it is a tried and true strategy to make the enemy think you are crazy and might do something stupid. Graham is doing a good job of that.

    [by the way, if you can sort out the multiple levels of irony in this comment, then you win the golden iron award.]

    Monday, November 8, 2010 at 2:19 pm | Permalink
  8. Iron Knee wrote:

    BTW, regarding comment #2.

    The US national debt is $13.2 trillion. China holds $847 billion of that debt. Interest payments on the total national debt this year are $414 billion. If we assume China receives a proportional share of the interest, that would be around $27 billion per year.

    The Chinese spend $114.7 billion per year on their military. So I think it is safe to say that it is not true that we pay them enough money to finance their military.

    Only about a quarter of our national debt is held by foreign countries. Most of it is held by the government itself, for example in monies collected for social security and Medicare that are not yet paid out.

    Monday, November 8, 2010 at 2:44 pm | Permalink
  9. BTN wrote:


    You missed another major holder of US Treasuries: the Federal Reserve (technically, a private bank and NOT a part of the Federal governemnt, despite their name).

    Tuesday, November 9, 2010 at 9:53 pm | Permalink
  10. Iron Knee wrote:

    I was just using SS and Medicare as easy-to-understand examples.

    Tuesday, November 9, 2010 at 9:58 pm | Permalink
  11. patriotsgt wrote:

    I don’t know if Graham is smart enough to know thats what he’s doing. Unless the gov’t secretly works together a lot more then we think or know, its probably just dumb luck. Wouldn’t it be nice if it really was a grand plan from all sides to make Iran and PRNK “think” something like that. Boy, if they only knew.

    Wednesday, November 10, 2010 at 7:44 am | Permalink