Fred to Save Planet
by Fred Reed
by Fred Reed: My
Name's Blind. James Blind.
The wench should watch the clock
The times they are a'changin'
The Pentagon runs amok
I fear that
I shall have to take the helm of the nation, to see that the ship
of state founder not on vast shoals of idiots. (This is a full-service
column.) You may ask, Fred, why do you think yourself competent
to do this? To which I reply, Consider what we have. Do you
prefer assured disaster to a gleam of hope?
Now, to work.
My first step will be to discard strategic imbecility as national
policy, thus unemploying a great many strategic imbeciles. Henceforth
the armed forces will concern themselves with defending the United
States not Korea, Japan, Afghanist-freaking-stan for gods
sake, nor Europe nor the back side of the moon nor the nether reaches
of the Crab Nebula. Just America. You know, that place between Canada
Now, how much
military to we need to defend America, as distinct from remote galaxies
and places no one in his right mind can spell? Very little. To invade
the US properly, you need a border with it, which means Canada,
which doesnt want the US, and Mexico, which doesnt need
an army to get it. The other way to invade is with a Shores of Iwo
Jima fleet with some manner of John Wayne on it, being fiercely
inarticulate and photogenic. No other country has, is building,
or wants such a fleet, and if they did land-based aircraft would
make a gorgeous barbecue out of it way the hell and gone out to
sea. We dont really need a navy at all, actually, navies being
at best obsolescent and, in our case, usually getting us in trouble.
These days, the fleet chiefly looks ridiculous threatening places
that pay no attention to it.
I would apply the exit strategy enunciated by the great James P.
Coyne, who taught Clausewitz everything the old Kraut knew. The
strategy is, OK, on the plane. Now. The simplicity is
breathtaking, its effectiveness certain. Weve got no business
being there, were killing people who dont need killing,
and nothing good can come of it.
Iraq: See above.
Further, I will withdraw from South Korea, Japan, and NATO, on the
grounds that they either have no enemies or can defend themselves
perfectly well. NATO in particular only involves us in disaster,
or we involve it in disaster, and I see no point in continuing to
breast feed it.
Next, I will
give the navy three months to get anything it profoundly values
out of Guantanamo, where we have no business being, and then lift
the embargo, which is an expression of adolescent temper. I will
then treat Cuba as what it is, an island of people no worse than
any other, who do not need stupid mistreatment by a large bratty
neighbor. This would improve relations with Latin America, a good
idea since we are decreasingly able to behave with normal meddlesomeness.
Next, I will
essay the unthinkable for American diplomacy, if it be such, namely
cultivating some slight understanding of how others see things instead
of always sending the Marines. I know, I know: I risk being called
a commie homo prevert, and accused of hating America, and not being
brainlessly truculent in the name of endocrine patriotism. But I
will make this sacrifice for my country.
Iran, which mysteriously seems not to like us. Why might Iranians
not appreciate our enthusiasms for democracy and human rights? In
1953 the wretched CIA, always making trouble for us, overthrew the
elected ruler and installed the Shah, a brutal bastard. What did
we care? We were surfing at Malibu. Then we supported our good ally
Saddam Hussein against Iran in a bloody war started for us by Saddam,
and now we freeze Irans assets and threaten to bomb it, and
we wreck its perfectly legal atomic program with funny viruses.
How could that upset them? Baffling.
invite their Maximum Leader Ahmadinnerjacket to the fuehrerbunker
on Pennsylvania Avenue. He is a murdering, repressive thug, like
most of our allies, and deserves the same courtesies. I will say,
Shall I call you Ahma, or do you prefer Mr. Dinnerjacket?...anyway,
I cant see any reason in all sprawling creation why Iran needs
to be our enemy. Lets stop. Its stupid and, worse, boring.
So well drop these dumb-ass sanctions and quit threatening
you, and if you are doing something bad, stop, and you mind your
business and well mind ours I know this part is inconceivable,
but well do it. Is that a concept, or what?
here is that we dont need to be enemies with most of the people
we are enemies with, but if we didnt have enemies we wouldnt
know who we were or what to do in the morning. Or how to get funding
for the Five-Sided War Box.
Here I will adopt another revolutionary principle, namely Dont
get in their faces if you dont have to. More bluntly, under
my rule we will keep our long intrusive noses out of other peoples
shorts. Stop telling Bolivians they cant chew coca leaves,
which they have done forever, since its none of our damn business
what Bolivians chew. Rocks, grass, hog entrails, its their
Now, I dont
want to go too deeply into theoretical physics here but: Recently
a couple of supposed American agents of ICE, the immigration blackguards,
were ambushed deep in Mexico, and one killed. Hooha erupted, and
the FBI is going to investigate. The Mexican press asked the obvious
question, which is Why is Mexico afflicted by so many meddlesome
gringo goofballs? Its our country, they say.
recently published an extensive peer-reviewed paper establishing
that if you arent in Mexico, or Iraq, you cant get killed
there. Its physics. Show me one person killed in Mexico who
was somewhere else at the time. Under my rule, we will stay where
we belong. Which is to say, very few places.
will adopt the realpolitik notion of backing the right horse. American
policy to date has been to support the most sordid torturing dictator
it can find, while singing America the Beautiful and Koom Bah Yah
and We Shall Overcome. What if, instead of engaging in almost carnal
intercourse with every godawful Central American general, whose
hobby is pulling fingernails off Indians for the benefit of American
corporations, we insisted that the United Fruits of the world (in
the botanical sense) pay a decent wage, absorbed the additional
twelve cents a pound for mangos, and had the Guats or whatever love
us? Smart, yes. Happen? Not under that daffy blonde and her rat
pack of Neoconservative dwarves. Under my administration, watch.
I shall take
my rightful power soon. As soon as I finish this bottle of Padre
is author of Nekkid
in Austin: Drop Your Inner Child Down a Well and A
Brass Pole in Bangkok: A Thing I Aspire to Be. His latest
book is Curmudgeing
Through Paradise: Reports from a Fractal Dung Beetle. Visit
© 2011 Fred Reed
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