This is not our war.
Of course, there are those who will come after me already just for saying that. It is true that I’m not opposed to Russia any more than I’m opposed to the American regime, but I’m not friendly with either.
This is an important point. I consider Putin the leader of a bandit gang. I’m not sure Biden is the leader of a bandit gang, but he’s certainly the figurehead of one.
One bandit gang in particular has taken my job, engaged in public statements against me and my kind, and threatens me with all sorts of sanctions and imprisonment should I not comply with their rules. The other would do the same if they had the opportunity.
There is a certain logic to having bandit gangs fight each other, but the consequences would be pretty dire. I’m a fan of running water and air conditioning. And air without ionizing radiation-emitting particulates, come to think of it. The internet is also a plus, but I could probably survive without it (though you’d never hear the end of my whining).
Plus, if the really big bombs drop, they’re probably going to hit where I live. Not directly, since I’m in a civilian area, but large enough bombs don’t care about where you live. They take out whole zip codes.
The Geopolitical Situation of Ukraine and Russia
The fundamental issue with the war in Ukraine is that it’s not our war because it doesn’t involve us.
Nothing that far away should involve us, and our intervention is unlikely to lead to less bloodshed. Do not forget that the Euromaidan coup was our doing, and what we are seeing is a conflict of two spheres of influence.
On one hand, our sphere of influence, which spreads globally to almost every country whether or not they like it.
On the other, there are the Russians, whose sphere of influence is basically their immediate neighbors (sans Ukraine and a couple other notable exceptions) and the people they sell oil to.
If we had truly wanted to reduce Russia’s influence because they’re so evil (putting aside the fact that the claims of Russian evil are somewhat dubious coming from the same people who killed a couple million people over oil and yellow cake uranium we never found), we have even better options than sanctions.
It’s not that most of the things we depend on Russia for (either in the United States, the Global American Empire, or as private consumers) need to come from Russia, but they are things that are an absolute necessity. Fertilizer and fuel are two things that literally keep the lights on and food in our bellies.
Putting more effort into producing those things would be great, but Biden hampered domestic fossil fuel production from the first day of his presidency.
Basically, we are in a strategic situation where between the COVID pandemic precautions (largely ineffective and massively devastating) and the resulting damage to our infrastructure, we can’t exactly start playing games with our strategic reserves.
The gas prices at the pumps in America are just one example of the problem. While the administration has been saying that they are going to take measures to resolve the issue (though they have been mum on specifics and they have said this without any meaningful action for a long time), the problems are unlikely to get better due to any government intervention. At best there could be cost-shifting, with a subsidy on gasoline paid for by taxpayers, but this is not really a reduction in cost and is merely a way of distributing consumers’ burdens to non-consumers.
Another problem nobody is talking about is that international shipping typically becomes fair game in a major shooting war. We can talk all we want about OPEC raising their fuel production, but if we wind up with a bunch of burning tankers in the Gulf of Persia we’re basically back at square one.
Another problem here is that we’re tapping marginal returns. To increase production it is necessary to invest in new facilities to produce oil at the same time that we’re simultaneously engaging in, at least, massive economic sanctions. In practice, if we were at war we would be facing even more conflict for resources.
The Left’s War on Reality
Make no mistake about the blame for this. We can pin it almost entirely on the left.
Military readiness being subverted by diversity training is important. It’s not so much an issue in the sense that we need a military like we have, since we would be perfectly able to defend ourselves against foreign invasion without a modern organized military.
However, the big issue is that if we’re guaranteeing other people, we create a situation where they’re absolutely dependent on us not dropping balls, and we simply don’t have military preparedness like we ought to (or else the people in the military are playing some four-dimensional chess involving looking weak so that they can start a war to profit the military industrial complex, but this is absurd) if we’re still the “world’s peacekeeper” in any sense of the word.
This is not to overlook the fact that these things have always been a farce, given our imperial ambitions. But even if we accept the pretense of America’s nobility, we’re seriously failing at our jobs.
Add in the vaccine mandates and you have all sorts of reasons to worry. Career operators tend not to be at high risk for respiratory infections, and they often resent having a mandate forced on them. This meant a talent drain of people who didn’t want to re-enlist if it meant undergoing a medical procedure they didn’t want (either for risk aversion, religious reasons, or simply obstinacy).
Then you get all the other stuff. The left doesn’t like nuclear power because they’re worried about long-term risks. These would be a reasonable conclusion, if you were still unfamiliar with the complex neurological processes involved with object permanence, but is not upheld by an analysis of the facts.
This error in thinking repeats itself in the climate change issue. They instinctively under-estimate the impact of CO2 and other emissions in the atmosphere (and insist on only focusing on their deleterious effects, including to the detriment of counter-acting forces), and fail to understand things like landfills and other waste disposal processes.
The results are costly regulations that inhibit industry for no appreciable benefit and stupid fears that prevent forward progress.
We’re still dependent on fossil fuels, even if we electrify vehicles and other daily fossil fuel consumption, because we don’t have any other way to power things. Solar and wind have been basically a massive red herring. They’re useful in certain contexts, but not as a long-term strategy that provides a sole source of power.
Further, we have all sorts of issues that have come from being unserious in our leadership. The article that said that Democrats merely needed Biden’s corporeal presence on the ballot in 2020 overlooked the fact that this was a lot less than America needed.
But this has been the consistent logic of the left for decades. In the past, these groups were considered fringe radicals, and it’s probably worth noting that the thought leaders who are in charge of media are going to be at the very least ideologically pure, if not vanguards of the extreme factions.
But those thought leaders also run think tanks and political campaigns. However much politicians may be empty suits making promises to get elected, they still are products of their social milieu.
What we have is the kudzu class (a term I’m deriving from the Ivy League universities, though it does not need to be applied in that literal sense) of Washington, a ruling elite that has become so divorced from reality that it honestly believes you can improve a child’s life by cutting off their genitalia.
AP polling suggests that 26% of Americans believe the US should play a major role in the Ukraine crisis.
I have gripes with polling, but I don’t think it’s unreliable when it produces a result against the regime narrative. Again, there is the chance that there is a weird four-dimensional chess scenario where they want a face-saving excuse to avoid getting involved, but this seems too contrived.
Rather, I think that we’re seeing the ultimate consequences of a regime that has lost its touch. The ruling elite never really serves the people, but they at least, per Chancellor Sutler, provide reminders to the masses of how important they are.
My own take is, of course, anti-war in a practical sense (since we’re going to face consequences nobody really wants to face and we will be unlikely to improve anyone’s life, or certainly lives on balance, by intervening), but more importantly it is anti-war in a moral sense.
There is something obscene about sending boys (and girls, if we’re being inclusive, but that’s doubly obscene) half-way around the world to die for Hunter Biden’s oil exec buddies and a regime that came to power in a coup.
It would be equally obscene if we were fighting on our borders to take land from Mexico or Canada, but the sheer insanity doubles with distance.
The initial balance seems to suggest that Russia has already won decisive victories over Ukrainian defensive forces.
This doesn’t factor into moral or political equations, but it points out an important factor.
This isn’t going to be an Iraq War situation where we can kick down the door, shoot some farmers, hang a dictator, and leave Islamic extremists behind to rape and pillage to their hearts’ content.
The Russians have actual military capabilities, and they’re going to punch back pretty well if we decide to get into the fray with them.
There is the important consideration that they can hit us in the heartland, which is important because we’re going to arm and feed pretty much every belligerent on our side if things really escalate.
It’s not surprising that our current leadership would wind up caught with their pants down here, especially given the response to Romney’s concerns about Russia back in 2012 from the kudzu class, but we need to consider the fact that a quick peace, say, by recognizing the separatist factions in Ukraine, would be far superior to a long war even if we didn’t have the other objections from a sheer perspective of practicality.
Or maybe the establishment really is drinking the knock-off powdered drink mix about postmenopausal ladies girlbossing an insurgency against Russia with child-soldier reinforcements.
I Ain’t No Fortunate Son
There is also the elephant in the room.
How many of us look at our country and view it as “our” country?
I am under no illusion about which bandit gang’s turf I live in, but I certainly don’t consider myself to be under any obligation of loyalty to people who take my stuff by threat of violence.
This is usually where the neocons would respond with some argument about the roads and social services, but I’d be perfectly happy paying for those in a voluntary arrangement. I’m a little less happy when the people doing it have a gun to my head, and even less happy with a good portion of it going to blowing up brown kids in some desert whose name I can’t pronounce (but I have a speech impediment, and it wouldn’t be much better if they were blowing up the kids in the deserts I could pronounce either).
Let’s say that I was drafted. I’ve developed some health problems recently, so that’s very unlikely to go through.
My first goal would be to find any way out of the army (or navy, or air force, or space force, or penal battalion) that I could.
I certainly wouldn’t consider my goal being some form of redemption (in the eyes of bandits who I seek no approval from), and I certainly wouldn’t do anything to aid and abet a cause I consider immoral.
Hell, if they drafted me into the war industries I’d have to be a conscientious objector, and there’s probably not much else of strategic value I’d be useful for (if I were even useful for that).
The question here is: how many Americans think like me?
There was an interesting poll a while back that showed that about a third of Americans support regional secession. I’ve been an arch-secessionist for a long time, which isn’t surprising because I’ve been an anarchist for a long time, and I believe that the answer to any secession is yes.
I even believe in people I don’t like seceding to make the society they want.
Commies on a little patch of land can deal with the consequences of their own action, though I’m not going to let them cross the border to return to some semblance of civilization unless they recant their beliefs (and even then they’re on thin ice).
And since there are few people I find as loathsome as communists, I’m always a fan of secession.
I don’t think that the separatist regions in Ukraine can really be said to be secessionist, but I certainly support their right to break away from Ukraine.
While there are issues with the Wilsonian notion of self-determination as the basis for borders (namely, the fact that it builds ethnostates, which are the worst kind of state), it’s certainly better than external determination, and certainly better than the external determination of the Global American Empire.
But secession isn’t the matter at hand. Sovereignty is.
The question here is whether people are willing to go to war for Ukrainian sovereignty. You have people like me, who weigh the idea of Ukrainian sovereignty versus the idea of separatists’ sovereignty and consider it a wash.
Then you have people who would nominally align with Ukraine, but do a pretty stark cost/benefit analysis and come to the conclusion that it’s not worth it.
You probably have some people who really are Russophiles as well. I’m not into it quite as much as some people, though I certainly can laugh at some of the memes (including the fact that apparently there are neo-Confederate Russian separatists, which is a sign that we live in the best timeline).
The fundamental issue is that there’s no public interest in Ukrainian sovereignty. You have the neocon faction that discredited themselves with their response to Trump, which showed them as traitors to their base (regardless of the fact that Trump was far from an actual right-winger), the progressive faction that has grown increasingly out of touch, and an American right that doesn’t have any idea what to think about Ukraine.
If you’re like me, and belong to a paleo/reactionary libertarian school of thought, you find yourself with a very clear answer. We should do nothing, because national sovereignty is a mistake.
And Who Is Putin?
There has been a massive campaign to smear and demonize Putin.
He’s not a good guy by any means.
But there’s no chance that he’s the next Hitler. He’s not going to build massive concentration camps and he’s not going to exterminate millions of people.
He’ll kill his political adversaries, sure, or use soft power against them, but Canada’s shutting down peoples’ bank accounts so it’s not clear how much more liberal we are than Putin anymore.
This is the insurmountable issue.
We’ve spent the past two decades blowing up children and oppressing our own people, engaging in endless total majoritarianism, and now we’re trying to argue that these are the highest sins that anyone can commit.
Oh, Putin throws his enemies in jail? Putin’s blowing up people? Putin’s invading other countries?
So are we. We’re just better at making it aesthetically pleasing for our audiences at home.
The Way Out
The proper response to Biden bringing us into war is something I’ve already mentioned.
Secession. It wouldn’t take much, just five or six states. The fabric’s already weak, and it’s not like the resources we’ve put overseas can just suddenly come back to start a bombing campaign at home.
There’s also a chance at revolution, but I don’t like revolution. It’s messy and unlibertarian, and it demands violence where secession merely results in violence when the criminals occupying a territory they are not welcome in refuse to leave it when asked.