(4 pm. – promoted by ek hornbeck)
A pseudonymous “Mr. Y” extemporaneously raps a brand spanking new national beat poetry of “strategic ecosystems” in the pages of Foreign Policy.
You can read about this other-worldly national strategic narrative here (pdf). By my reading, the authors failed to substantively address the hard facts of early twenty-first century life, such as our acceleration toward the concrete abutment of carrying capacity, the fundamental breakdown of debt-dollar discipline in the “new world order,” and our complete inability to predict or control the oily regions of the world, never mind comprehending nuclear half-lives on lively tectonic zones, although to their considerable credit, they do acknowledge some of them.
Thus, my précis, one of many umpteen equally sensible broth-reducing permutations, goes roughly as follows:
Global national security interests are strategic world values toward environmental prosperity.
It does sound vaguely better than continually, blindly, and destructively lashing out at phantom menaces and “axes of evil” as our dominance ebbs and we bleed to death on faraway sands, but without specifics, it’s about as helpful as a well-played saxophone riff in an emergency room.
Imagine gushing blood on the hospital gurney after having inadvertently stabbed yourself in the chest and femoral artery. A guy walks in wearing a zoot suit and an alto sax, and goes:
Bope bope monup, squonup ‘n’ ciao! Beep-squeely onup, honup, and how!
On the one hand, you’re impressed that this gruff-voiced dude can scat and blow sax at the same time. On the other, you’re laying there, bleeding to death and thinking, “That helps how? Oh, this must be a David Lynch movie.”
Then, as hemostasis fails, one hears HAL 9000 in reverse ontogeny:
Interests! National security must globalize!
Interests! National security must!
Interests! National! Must!
On a far more positive note, this is probably one of the more rational narrative-balloons floated by the governing elite in many decades, even if they are light-headed from blood loss. So, read it. It’s a veritable pony petting zoo, relatively speaking, given that it remains premised on the zombie narratives of “American values and leadership” and “economic growth.”
Given, say, our failed wars of aggression, world-wide concentration camps, a two-tiered judicial system favoring the wealthy and connected, an inequality index scraping the bottom just prior to running aground, and our ongoing attacks on social justice and the environment, to name a few, is there any un-perverted sense in which we can still claim “American values and leadership?” No. Those halcyon days, if they ever existed, are deader than fuck. Any reclamation runs up hard against the exigencies of carrying capacity.
Has there ever been any possible concept of, as the authors put it, “sustainment,” that involves perma-growth? Barring miracles of science, which remain unlikely, thus leaving room only for very graduated improvements in efficiency, sustainability and growth are completely incompatible. Always have been, in the long run; and we’re like marathoners hitting “the wall.”
Nevertheless, it’s a start. Now, please excuse me while I go outside to see if I can blow smoke rings from my ass.