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"Who controls the food supply controls the people; who controls the energy can control whole continents; who controls money can control the world" - Henry Kissinger

and yet...

"Sooner or later everyone sits down to a banquet of consequences" – Robert Louis Stevenson

We good, him bad - Rasmussen wants more money for NATO

In response to an FT article by Anders Fogh Rasmussen on 5th August 2014, entitled 'Each Nato ally has to pull its weight after Russia's threats'

Mr Rasmussen - I think your argument is a remake of 'Reds under the Bed' for a more modern audience. 

You start with a bold claim:

"Ever since the collapse of communism, Nato has made efforts to engage with Moscow, offering more co-operation on more issues than to any other non-Nato country"

Really? I'm sure the Russians get that nice warm glow every time the US opens a new NATO base on their borders. And how does your claim fit with US foreign policy as expressed in the Wolfowitz doctrine?

“Our first objective is to prevent the re-emergence of a new rival, either on the territory of the former Soviet Union or elsewhere, that poses a threat on the order of that posed formerly by the Soviet Union. This is a dominant consideration underlying the new regional defense strategy and requires that we endeavor to prevent any hostile power from dominating a region whose resources would, under consolidated control, be sufficient to generate global power'

Mr Eisenhower made the following comment as he left the White House.

"In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together".

Here's my point in a nutshell. I think 'alert and knowledgeable citizenry' is the most important phrase in Mr Eisenhower's speech. I think that as the former Supreme Commander of Allied Forces in WW2 and the outgoing President of the United States, he knew more about this danger than anyone before or since. We currently have politicians and vested interests on both sides, dusting off the drums of war. People who've never been in harm's way, and never will be. I don't believe these people are telling me the truth, and I will not give you one cent more until I get it. 

In short, I don't trust your motives Mr Rasmussen. I don't know who is yanking your chain, but if you want to yank mine, you're going to have to do far better than this.

Bernanke and Paulson didn't save the world - they saved Wall Street

Matthew Engel says we must hope political leaders learn lessons of WW1