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Sunday, February 17, 2019

Failure is no hindrance

Not when you're able to produce the answer "THE US MUST INVADE [Fill-in-the-blank]" on cue whenever called upon by the Fake News. Tucker Carlson shares a compelling selection from his recent book about two neocon mediocrities who keep being called upon for their opinions on military matters despite their collective track record of complete failure:
One thing that every late-stage ruling class has in common is a high tolerance for mediocrity. Standards decline, the edges fray, but nobody in charge seems to notice. They’re happy in their sinecures and getting richer. In a culture like this, there’s no penalty for being wrong. The talentless prosper, rising inexorably toward positions of greater power, and breaking things along the way. It happened to the Ottomans. Max Boot is living proof that it’s happening in America.

Boot is a professional foreign policy expert, a job category that doesn’t exist outside of a select number of cities. Boot has degrees from Berkeley and Yale, and is a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. He has written a number of books and countless newspaper columns on foreign affairs and military history. The International Institute for Strategic Studies, an influential British think tank, describes Boot as one of the “world’s leading authorities on armed conflict.”

None of this, it turns out, means anything. The professional requirements for being one ofthe world’s Leading Authorities on Armed Conflict do not include relevant experience with armed conflict. Leading authorities on the subject don’t need a track record of wise assessments or accurate predictions. All that’s required are the circular recommendations of fellow credential holders. If other Leading Authorities on Armed Conflict induct you into their ranks, you’re in.
Meanwhile, brilliant military historians and strategists like Martin van Creveld and William S. Lind are being ignored, to the cost of many thousands of lives.

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59 Comments:

Blogger Mr.MantraMan February 17, 2019 9:35 AM  

Don Jr. mentioned Boot and Kristol in a tweet, as fails of course.

Blogger Johnny February 17, 2019 9:59 AM  

What is commonplace is that people bring in the expert that will give them the answer they want to hear. Happens all over. Experts is real, but the concept as frequently used a a fraud.

Most education now is based on science, or is alleged to be. The great triumph of science has come from narrowness. A person becomes an expert in some particular, specialized area. When the area is broad and general, the concept of science is less useful. Some people know better than others, but in things like foreign policy, there are not true experts in the traditional scientific sense. That is because the conclusion requires knowledge in a lot of areas, not just specialization in one.

Blogger Bobo #117 February 17, 2019 10:01 AM  

The (((special people))) must be listened to, even when they're wrong.
They be smarter...

Blogger Mr.MantraMan February 17, 2019 10:07 AM  

FTR Ol' Boot is under pressure, he is punching down on the 2A in his twitter crap, when in doubt in our wonderful democratic society punch down and punching down in America means punching rightwards. So I assume Boot feels that the Cossacks are riding thru the night to bust down his door, tip over his Menorah and most importantly crush his rice bowl underneath their jack boots.

In Illinois when a politician is under duress they automatically like breathing punch down on the 2A.

Blogger Unknown February 17, 2019 10:12 AM  

I know right? Is it expected that non Israeli Jews should go off and fight in some of the wars they advocate for? Oy Vey! Think of the 6 garillion who died! That's hate speech! We must give no space to antisemitism, I disavow!!!

BTW if Tucker ever openly starts addressing the JQ we know shit has gotten real. Meantime I'm enjoying the crap out of him trolling these bastards with his obvious coded references.

Blogger pyrrhus February 17, 2019 10:13 AM  

Neocon "experts" are much like business consulting firms...They are hired to agree with management's ideas, and to heck with reality.

Blogger Skyler the Weird February 17, 2019 10:25 AM  

We are become as diverse and mediocre as 1914 Austria-Hungary.

Blogger Lazarus February 17, 2019 10:28 AM  

Meanwhile, brilliant military historians and strategists like Martin van Creveld and William S. Lind are being ignored, to the cost of many thousands of lives.

And this guy, former IDF intel and specialist in Arab political discourse:

While at the conference, I contacted one of Richard Holbrooke's advisors in order to give him the paper and introduce the idea of dividing up Afghanistan into the discussions President Obama was having at that time. The advisor asked me to send him the paper by email – and I did. Half an hour later – enough time to read the paper – he called back angrily and said: "Are you saying that there is no Afghan nation??? What a racist you are!!!" I answered: "No, there is no Afghan nation, and I am not a racist, because what is to be found there are ten different and distinctive nations who never joined together to form one people, and if you don't divide up that non-functioning country and give each one of them its own separate piece of land, you will find yourself stuck in Afghanistan for at least another decade."



US & Taliban

Blogger Unknown February 17, 2019 10:29 AM  

@4 the tribe well knows that they're increasingly loathed on both the left and right. Their hysterical over reaction to that Somali chicks lighthearted Twitter post proves that they're even willing to overturn the SJW victim stack to defend their narrative. A couple of years ago they'd have ignored a scarfed muzzie ranting about Israel, now even they are subject to muh holocaust disavowing.

All the neo cons have left is influence bought by money and a situational alliance with the left against Trump. Whether the GE knows it or not, his existence has red pilled millions and there's no going back to the good old days when the base of the Republican party would happily support another ME war. No POTUS candidate will ever win the GOP nomination supporting a neo con foreign policy. And as the Hispanics take over the Democrats the same will eventually happen with them.

Blogger Felix Bellator February 17, 2019 10:36 AM  

Creveld, Lind, and others who have the right answers are not ignored out of ignorance by TPTB. They are ignored because an ongoing problem is desired, not a working solution.

Blogger thalios February 17, 2019 10:36 AM  

An expert is just the name for those members of the circle jerk class. They exist for every topic or industry. Boot and Kristol are examples from the "foreign policy" circle. I deal with these types of charlatans all the time in the IT/Tech consultancy and InfoSec circles (especially InfoSec... It's full of them). The big difference... The jokers in my circles don't get people killed.

Blogger Carl B. February 17, 2019 10:42 AM  

(((Boot and Kristol))) should be used as tools to clear IED's from Afghan roads.

Blogger Chuck February 17, 2019 10:42 AM  

This is also why I put so little stock in what any "economist" has to say be they on the so called right or the so called left. They say what they're paid to say. Everything Boot writes is an audition for donors. Same for the loathsome Bill Kristol. Neither of them have any market value as content creators. They're panhandlers.

Blogger Mr.MantraMan February 17, 2019 10:44 AM  

In "On War" Lind wrote back in 2004 that an O school for Marines shitcanned one of the books by Creveld. Ironically Lind wrote that General Kelly had his head screwed on right for 3GW, we see how that worked out.

I love the Austria-Hungary comparison, how apt, that will be stolen.

Blogger Northpal February 17, 2019 10:49 AM  

Max Boot is a champion of board games (Risk).

Blogger Damn the torpedos February 17, 2019 10:51 AM  

Tucker Carlson is fun to watch

Blogger Nikephoros II Phokas February 17, 2019 10:55 AM  

"One thing that every late-stage ruling class has in common is a high tolerance for mediocrity. Standards decline, the edges fray, but nobody in charge seems to notice. They’re happy in their sinecures and getting richer. In a culture like this, there’s no penalty for being wrong. The talentless prosper, rising inexorably toward positions of greater power, and breaking things along the way. It happened to the Ottomans. Max Boot is living proof that it’s happening in America."

Max Boot is not failing. He's doing exactly what the Council on Foreign Relations wants him to.

The globalists profited from the destruction of China to the benefit of Britain, and now they're benefiting from the destruction of the US to the benefit of China.

They are not a "late-stage ruling class" as they don't have an allegiance to any particular state, nation, or empire.

(((Certain people))) have been in China for centuries, and Israel has been sending US military tech to China for decades. They've only increased trade and cooperation since Trump came to office.

Blogger Latigo3 February 17, 2019 10:59 AM  

How do these people still have a platform for the crap that they spew? Max and Bill remind me of the German school teacher in movie All Quiet on the Western Front. I always ask people when they want to advocate some stupid invasion; "Whose sons do you want to send off to war, do you want to send your sons?". It becomes very quiet after that

Blogger jfreddd February 17, 2019 11:03 AM  

Movie remake: DAS BOOT, the inspiring story of a plucky, deep-diving Deep State Commissar who survives an harrowing vision quest only to be deeply dive-bombed at his Glorious Apotheosis. (sheds tear)

Blogger nbfdmd February 17, 2019 11:08 AM  

Everyone should read the Foundation series by Asimov. It's scary how right he was about the nature of a collapsing empire, writing in 1952 at the apparent triumph of the American Empire. Of course, he took a ton of inspiration from Gibbon's Decline and Fall.

Foundation is wonderfully written and very appropriate for our times.

Blogger 67kevin February 17, 2019 11:12 AM  

It is hard to imagine a more stupid or more dangerous way of making decisions than by putting those decisions in the hands of people who pay no price for being wrong.-Thomas Sowell

Blogger ZhukovG February 17, 2019 11:27 AM  

Austria-Hungary, like the Soviet Union, had the advantage of being able to be, more or less, cleanly divided into viable Nation-States.

In the United States some potential Nation-States exist. However, all are awash with hordes of minorities and regional transplants. The eventual breakup of the United States is going to be very messy; apocalyptic even.

Blogger pyrrhus February 17, 2019 11:28 AM  

@21 As Taleb has repeatedly pointed out, people without "skin in the game" cannot be trusted in any way.

Blogger sammibandit February 17, 2019 11:34 AM  

Pyrrhus, you should cross post that to the Coulter thread. Barren-womb at age 60 and single, never adopted. No skin in the game.

Blogger Skyler the Weird February 17, 2019 11:57 AM  

@14. If you're interested in the late stages of the Hapsburg collapse, read Georg von Trapp(yes THAT von Trapp) memoir 'To the Last Salute'. I can understand why the Germans wanted him to command a U Boat.

Blogger Skyler the Weird February 17, 2019 12:00 PM  

I always thought Ann was Gay

Blogger VD February 17, 2019 12:11 PM  

Foundation is wonderfully written

I love Foundation. But wonderfully written it is not. Asimov had all the literary talent of the average walrus, except he was given to goofier nomenclature.

Blogger Azure Amaranthine February 17, 2019 12:30 PM  

"is a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations."

Heard enough. Hang him high.

Blogger Charles Martel February 17, 2019 12:38 PM  

Max Boot is an actual (((Russian))). It is quite amazing when you check into the anti-Trump crowd how many of them are actual (((Russians))) or the direct descendants of (((Russians)))... And yet a 115 IQ is not enough for these chosen few to foresee what is going to happen to them in a not so distant future. They were lucky to be let out of Russia alive. They won't be that lucky in a country with 300 million guns.

Blogger Damelon Brinn February 17, 2019 12:39 PM  

As soon as I read "two neocon mediocrities" I knew Boot would be one of them. He's like a Mad Magazine spoof of a neocon chickenhawk come to life.

Blogger Tars Tarkas February 17, 2019 12:47 PM  

nbfdmd wrote:It's scary how right he was about the nature of a collapsing empire, writing in 1952 at the apparent triumph of the American Empire.

The seeds of destruction had already been planted by then.
The election of FDR was probably the point which cemented the future. He got us into the war and even before the war had begun to increase the size and scope of the federal government. Though he was dead by the time the war ended, he had created enough problems that the US military never really de-armored. The US has been in a war footing since at least 1940, not to mention at an actual war for a very good chunk of the time since. I think it possible that this was the beginning of the US going from a nation to an empire.

I do wonder how long the US can hold things together. However long that is going to be, it will undoubtedly be much longer than anyone can really anticipate. I just hope it will be similar to the fall of the Soviet union, which was mostly quick, clean and bloodless.

Funny how Tucker points out Boot's Israeli justification for the Iraq War, but fails to mention just how Jewish Neoconservatism is and how uniformly pro-Israel they are. It's like we all just agreed that despite the giant pink elephant in the middle of the room, we pretend it's not there.

Blogger Mr. Deficient February 17, 2019 1:02 PM  

@20. I went from Frank Herbert and Philip K Dick to Asmiov and was appalled at how horrid the writing was. Also felt very weird and preachy even as a teenager, but I'll give it another shot at some point.

Blogger nbfdmd February 17, 2019 1:03 PM  

@27: I'm not as well read as you, but I definitely prefer Asimov to a writer like GRRM. Anyway, fair enough. He writes better than I could.

@31: One of the prescient points in Foundation was that the Empire was still getting stronger in the core while it was losing ground in the periphery. We can see this in the US today: foreign hegemonic influence is rapidly decreasing, yet domestically the federal government is the strongest it's ever been. Of course, this will just make the collapse more sudden for Americans.

Blogger nbfdmd February 17, 2019 1:05 PM  

@32: This must be a personal taste thing for me. I also loved the Mars Trilogy by Robinson, which I think you and VD would subject to similar criticism.

Blogger Jim the Curmudgeon February 17, 2019 1:22 PM  

"This is also why I put so little stock in what any "economist" has to say "

True, political scientists, 'foreign policy experts' and economists are completely insulated from the effects of their prognostications. The average auto mechanic, plumber or HVAC guy is on the hook for bad decisions or execution. The other group can advocate actions that end millions of lives, decimate economies (etc), and they never face any consequences. My wife was born in Russia during the massive economic downturn in the 90s that was deliberately caused by Larry Summers and a host of his fellow tribal economic advisors.

This is part of why people like this (as well as the elite families who own the large banks, insurance firms, energy monopolies) are actually weak as individuals. They don't face the consequences of their actions. There's no feedback loop to act as a corrective.

We all know that if Boot's last name were Chen, Smith or Singh he would be pumping gas or flipping burgers.

Blogger justaguy February 17, 2019 1:22 PM  

While I like military strategy, I don't think much of Lind. VanC-- yeah he is good and hasn't been taken over by the 4th gen idea.

However, until the US decides who is on its die, what its side is, etc, our operational doctrines will continue to be screwed up.We don't know who is on our side or not and it shows.

Blogger R Devere February 17, 2019 1:26 PM  

"is a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations."

Heard enough. Hang him high.
---------------------------

Awwww! Can we draw and quarter him first, puhleeeze???

Also, when do we get over this love of credentialed "expertise"? Doctors have worsened our general, everyday health; psychiatrists have made us crazier and defined deviance way down and "professional" educators have made our children stupider than ever!

Yet, I still hear the unwashed say, "But he's an expert, with degrees from an Ivy league school! Who are you to deny the truth of what he/she says?"

Come the civil war, I know where my first return fire will be aimed!

Blogger S1AL February 17, 2019 1:34 PM  

"I love Foundation. But wonderfully written it is not. Asimov had all the literary talent of the average walrus, except he was given to goofier nomenclature."

Agreed. Asimov had incredible ideas and a talent for presenting them. But I couldn't name a single character he ever created.

Blogger Doktor Jeep February 17, 2019 2:11 PM  

In a somewhat related note, in other countries they are putting women at the heads of "defense" departments where only young men are still getting drafted for a year or two.
Let that sink in, as PJW would say.

Blogger Brett baker February 17, 2019 2:27 PM  

During peasants' revolts, the elite's agents get killed.

Blogger Hammerli 280 February 17, 2019 2:39 PM  

@25: It's not well known that Georg von Trapp was the Austro-Hungarian Navy's top U-boat commander. A deadly fighting sailor.

Blogger Hammerli 280 February 17, 2019 2:44 PM  

Tucker Carlson is really starting to get it. The "elite" of our society is now made up of hereditary office-holders - who have neither merit nor a sense of duty. They want the perks of an aristocracy, but not the obligations.

The truth is that these twits are demonstrably my intellectual inferiors. And it terrifies me that these morons have the power to make laws...when they should not have the power to make anything more than a mud pie.

Blogger Hammerli 280 February 17, 2019 2:47 PM  

@36: I tend to agree. I read Lind's 4th GW warfare manual...and frankly, the USMC Small Wars Manual is far more useful. Lind's work is a useful supplement to insurgency and counterinsurgency operations in the modern communications environment, but we're not talking about the Strategy of Technology here.

Blogger Dirtnapninja February 17, 2019 3:00 PM  

Isnt it incredible that those non-'meritocratic' WASPs were able to get shit done?

Blogger Silent Draco February 17, 2019 4:04 PM  

Hammerli280, it's an application of SoT: knowledge warfare distributed globally to thought or thot leaders at fiber-optic speeds. The recipients and those retweeted just fit it to their world view; faulty information + image or video out of context = propaganda or poor knowledge. A step beyond IW, but because it's not cool hardware or increased staff count, it remains an orphan stepchild that has a nasty set of OODA loops attached. Use 4GW as an additional battlefield and EW/IW prep tool.

Blogger Gen. Kong February 17, 2019 5:20 PM  

Amazing, no? No matter how totally everything Boot, Kristol and the other Neo-Palestinians turns to absolute dung, they're still the "worldwide authorities", respected by the "international community" - not only with the laughably obsequious step-n-fetchit bowing and shuffling of the Gay Old Pedobears but even with the allegedly anti-war Bolsheviks led by Pelosi Queen of Zombies.

There's the old dictum attributed to Voltaire which goes:
If you want to know who rules over you, find out who you may not criticize

Putting aside for a minute the numerous issues with inavder-in-congress Ilhan Omar, the fact is that she said nothing that was untrue. The faux-legislature of the Rotten Banana Empire is completely owned and controlled by AIPAC. Not only did we see the predictable chorus of screaming from the Gay Old Pedobears and Trump's call for her resignation, note how fast she was forced tp recant and grovel before the likes of Boot and Kristol by Pelosi et al. Boot, Kristol, Abrams and the rest are still there for the same reason Ilhan Omar was forced to submit to those who own the congress.

Blogger doctrev February 17, 2019 5:28 PM  

President Trump's foreign policy is going exceptionally well, considering that literal traitors within and without the US conspire with him at every turn. Israel has a nationalist government that has better relations with the Arab states than she has ever enjoyed. South America and Europe are being convulsed with nationalist sentiments that sometimes even result in actual nationalist governments. And most importantly, he's pretty committed to doing the exact opposite of what Max Boot and Bill Kristol want.

I'm surprised William Lind writes pessimistically about the President for that reason: then again, if he thinks making Afghanistan a de facto Pakistan ally is a good idea, he's not on board with the President's intentions. And I don't believe Martin van Creveld qualifies to be an American advisor, though I might be wrong. It's a shame- they may not be perfect, but either would be a vast improvement over large swathes of the current deep state.

Blogger Toris February 17, 2019 6:53 PM  

"... since at least 1940, not to mention at an actual war for a very good chunk of the time since. I think it possible that this was the beginning of the US going from a nation to an empire."

"Isnt it incredible that those non-'meritocratic' WASPs were able to get shit done?"

WASPs were very much working on "World Order" building from the 1940s (and sensitive to it not being perceived as imperialism). Dismantling national sovereignty was 'shit they got done'. Not alone, of course.

Blogger Ominous Cowherd February 17, 2019 7:00 PM  

S1AL wrote:Asimov had incredible ideas and a talent for presenting them. But I couldn't name a single character he ever created.

R. Daneel Olivaw? The Mule? I remember the names, but nothing of their characters.

Blogger DraveckysHumerus February 17, 2019 9:24 PM  

Failure is apparently hindrance eating mint chocolate chip ice cream once the government executes you. Tim McVeigh is not immediately available for comment. And so we do not act. Me neither, overtly, consider.

Blogger Athelstane February 17, 2019 9:41 PM  

Asimov was a veritable machine for ideas, and making connections between them.

But his prose was leaden, and his characters as flat as Kansas. He's an important figure in science fiction, but an awful stylist. Heinlein, at least, could write characters.

Blogger Chief_Tuscaloosa February 17, 2019 9:57 PM  

I dunno...if Kristol and Boot were being paid to:
1. Help deplete the public till of the largest Christian country on useless foreign wars,
2. Convince us that Israel is a staunch ally who can be trusted with TS-SCI technology,
3. Sell us that any war that spills the blood of America's bravest young males before they have children is necessary to "fight them over there before they come over here", then oy vey iz mir, they've done a mitzvah for our collective future, amiright (((fellow white people)))?!

Blogger Ominous Cowherd February 17, 2019 10:53 PM  

Chuck wrote:This is also why I put so little stock in what any "economist" has to say be they on the so called right or the so called left. They say what they're paid to say.

In grad school, I learned that the best macro theories give justification for government spending. I also learned that we're all Keynesians now, because that's where the prestige is. Want to be on the President's Council of Economic Advisors? Better advise him to buy more votes.

Blogger Up from the pond February 18, 2019 1:18 AM  

"Mediocrities ...keep being called upon for their opinions on military matters despite their collective track record of complete failure. Meanwhile, brilliant military historians and strategists like Martin van Creveld and William S. Lind are being ignored."

It's like this not only in military matters but also in many other areas of our crumbling civilization: art, philosophy, politics, you name it. The best new writers do not write for the NYT; the best new painters are not exhibited in the mainstream museums; the best new music does not win Grammys; the best comedians do not work for SNL; the best thinkers are not at Harvard; etc.

The mainstream is an open sewer. Anyone putting even one particle of credence in it is a fool.

Seek value outside the mainstream, for there is where it lies.

Blogger Thad Tuiol February 18, 2019 2:25 AM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger Thad Tuiol February 18, 2019 2:26 AM  

Some lyrics from an old song come to mind:

"When nightmares memories fades to dust
We'll get back on our feet again
This war has nothing to do with us
But somehow we're still involved in it
Well...
Don't you worry about the situation
(A message from the telephone)
They're out there fighting for the state of the nation
(I'm waiting for a chance to come home)
Well, Don't you worry about the situation
(A message from the telephone)
They always have to fight the alienation
(I realize I'm fighting alone)
There's no place like home
There's no place like home
There's no place I don't want to be anywhere else"

- State of the Nation (Industry)

Blogger wahr01 February 18, 2019 3:07 AM  

A lot of people forget that the US military has ALWAYS won its wars not by training or technology but by material superiority.

We yanks simply produced enough machinery to swamp our adversaries.

Thanks to "globalism", the manufacturing base that allowed that is now gutted.

I honestly think a military defeat in the near term would be GOOD for the long-term trajectory of the United States.

It would force introspection and the return to visible mult-polarity would reveal the lies that are "global markets" and "global society" and compel a swift return to nationalism and a rather panicked effort to re-build our industrial base to the advantage of blue-collar America.

It's much harder to peddle a kumbayah fantasy of "the entire world just wants to get along" when there are geopolitical rivals picking off your naval vessels.

Blogger nbfdmd February 18, 2019 10:27 AM  

@57: Exactly why the globalists will do anything to prevent a kinetic war, including going as far as allowing the enemy population to move in and take over your own country. Oh, the natives are complaining? Shut them up by any means necessary.

Blogger John Best. February 18, 2019 11:53 AM  

I really enjoy William S. Lind's streams about the affairs of the past week on the Traditional right youtube channel. I have put many people onto reading his books, I see a lot of the same things he does. Its rather shocking to realize that people in the military don't actually know anything about strategy or the operational level of war, they just want more firepower, speed and protection to have a tactical back and forth with another state power trying to do the same thing.

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