1. “But set that aside, and assume we can convince the country to pay soldiers less while we they are necessarily killed more often.”

    I don’t think I have ever caught a typo in my years of reading you, shows how much good an editor does. Good work, I support anything you get paid for. Your review of Twilight of the Elites remains one of the best pieces of writing I have ever read.

  2. Sorry, there’s another one, too, and kinda big: “…or our refusal to properly task our immensely wealthy elite.”

    Maybe Salon, too, is following Salam’s advice and lowering their personnel costs. Hope they paid you more than your editor!

  3. Reads like your writing, which isn’t quite as breezy as I expect from Salon. Hurry up and cash the check before they change their minds.

  4. Nice piece. Should influence a few minds. I know years of reading, and even often disagreeing, with you has influenced my thinking on these issues. I like to think I go to regionalists and good IR studies as my main sources, but it’s too easy to ignore often unsatisfying pessimistic counsel if you haven’t heard solid overarching arguments to back it up.

  5. I read and admired your piece, but today the thing I found disheartening is a piece on Americablog, a supposedly progressive site, advocating the same kind of visceral, knee-jerk, stupid intervention that neo-cons rightly get called on. Except this time, it would involve intervening in Ukraine against Russia, a piece of daylight madness that could be catastrophically dangerous. I’m all for calling out conservatives for being nuts who don’t learn anything, but it’s a little dismaying that people on your end of the political spectrum arenn’t much better. Aravois is a clever guy with words and pussyfoots just short of advocating ground troops, to his credit, but it’s still pretty disturbing and irresponsible in my book.


  6. “I would certainly oppose American military hegemony even if I thought such a thing were still possible, but it’s irrelevant, because I don’t.”

    If I may: but it’s not at all irrelevant because the only real objection to neoconservatism is the objection to American hegemony. Otherwise you’re just bickering over details: ‘we’ (at the moment) are not strong enough, not benevolent enough, their wickedness is not holocausty enough. Instead, a real opponent of neoconservatism would emphasize the importance of a strong framework of international law, enforceable and equally applied.

  7. You’ll probably never be able to any true believing neocon, because they could always claim that the alternative would be worse if we hadn’t intervened. I remember the late Christopher Hitchens making that argument about Iraq – that if we hadn’t invaded, then eventually Saddam would have died and the country would be torn apart in civil war by his sons and its own internal ethnoreligious divisions, at which point we’d be dragged into a conflict there anyways to prevent it from harming Saudi Arabia (just like Gulf War I).

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