Seeing them is definately a religious experience…
I agree with you in principle, but as it stands all of the places you mention have a direct effect on the US economy and our daily lives (read oil production and price). Here is the rub: maintaining our current standard of living requires some degree of US hegemony, without which we would not be able able to run the deficits required to fund everything from our defense to Medicaid expansion. Without Hegemony we would have to live within our means (to say nothing of settling our current debt issues), something I don’t think we are currently capable of doing without some catastrophic and cataclysmic event.
The best option is to slowly begin moving away Hegemony (already happening) while maintaining access to the things our economy needs and making budgetary adjustments as we go. Unfortunately this would be (will be) painful but if we don’t do it it will be (is) done for us.
I’m not sure how the Swiss handle trade (except they are not stupid enough to be part of the EU or adopt the Euro), but considering that they are a little country in the mountains with no natural resources, whatever they are doing, it sure as hell works.
One thing that the Swiss had right until the US screwed it up, was taxes and secret banking.
If the US adopted the time honored Swiss approach to taxes (it’s none of our business how you made your money back home, or if you don’t pay taxes in your home country) and allowed the rest of the world to invest and bank in the US in complete secrecy, the US would quickly become a very very wealthy country. That would also become an impregnable defense for the US, as it has for Switzerland. No one could afford to attack their best investment.
The Swiss tax scheme sort of worked for the Swiss because there used to be few trustworthy tax havens. When everyone does it, it ceases to be unique and each additional party has to sweeten the deal (cheapen the service), making it a race to the bottom. It’s not a deterrent to aggression and it was never a deterrent. Tax havens are sort of coming to an end, and that’s a good thing. They’re not helping workers, they’re not even helping industrialists, they’re just helping people and companies with robber-baron hoards of wealth to keep running up the score against the rest of us poor schmucks. They also don’t do much economic good for the host country either. Just consider Ireland, they’ve attracted lots of companies, but all the Irish get out of it is shitty call center jobs and a factory job for the lucky few.
Blocked in Norway for copyright reasons
There is another model, which I have outline in another thread not so long ago, Singapore.
Singapore has gone from a third world country to first world in 50 years. This has been done by good governance in a multi-racial society with 4 official languages, but without racial friction and no natural resources.
This is very similar to Switzerland, which was also an inspiration for Mr. Lee Kuan Yau when he drew up the guidelines for the small island state when it involuntarily became independent in 1965.
It was not done by building protective walls (figurally speaking) but by opening up the economy to foreign investment and the boarders to foreign talents to develop the most business friendly country in the world.
Today Singapore is among the richest country in the world in terms of GDP (PPP) per capita, bypassing even Norway with it’s oil and gas and all other European countries, except Monaco and Luxembourg. (USA is far from the top in this category)
Singapore is not a “tax haven” per se, but with low personal and corporate tax, thus it has attracted companies and people from all over the world, but managed to keep control of the influx of foreign labourers from the far less prosperous neighbouring countries.
Could it be a model for others? Many think so, but I’m not sure if it would fit USA.
Singapore is a trade hub and city state. Not exactly a position many countries find itself in.
Yes that is right, that is what Singapore is, but what it was before independence was a former British Colony that had for a short spell been a part of the newly minted Malaysia, formed together with the Malay Federation and the two British Colonies,Sarawak and North Borneo. (Now Sabah)
Oil rich Brunei did not want to join.
In August, 1965, when Singapore was unceremoniously ejected from Malaysia for racial and political reasons, it was still totally dependent on the British Military, who represented over 1/3 of the employment source. They pulled out in 1971.
The nearest to a “natural resource” Singapore had was it’s location and a trainable and hard working labour force. From that the modern Singapore was crafted, not by one man, but by a team of dedicated and incorruptible political leaders, which was another very important “resource”, but far from natural in that region. (Or anywhere)
The US is the world’s largest consumer marketplace. The US is the world’s largest economy. The US dollar is the world’s reserve currency. US Government bonds are the safest and largest publicly traded investment in the world. If not for the loss of privacy and high taxes, the US economy would be many times larger. If US had Swiss style secret banking, it would bring enormous prosperity and economic dominance for the US.
A strong economy is the fundamental cornerstone of a strong defense.
Oh I almost forgot, this thread had something to do with the Norwegian Navy.
Well, never mind that, since all other threads about Norway has been closed, here is some news for you.
Last chance to see the full midnight sun above horizon from North Cape is on 29. July, so if you wants to experience that you better hurry up: http://www.radionordkapp.no/nyheter/3570/snart-slutt-pa-midnattssola/
Well, it is still possible to do so at Svalbard. The last possibility in Longyearbyen isn’t until 22. Aug. (Even later at Ny-Aalesund)
Then again, there is always another possibility next year and year after that and…
(Unless somebody accidently hit the wrong button, that is)
Now I know you’re playing the devil’s advocate. Should Poland have tried harder to make friends with Germany? Or China with Japan? Of course not.
As this is a thread about the Norwegian Navy, has South Korea finished and delivered your HNoMS MAUD?
If you mean in the 1930’s and 40’s, the answer is; it probably wouldn’t have helped anyway, given the world as it was then.
If you mean the difference of opinions there is between them today; definitely yes. Times are different and the way people think about relationships between countries are different.
The scare mongery created by the military/industrial complex is self serving, but less and less people buy the theory that everything can be solved by guns, or by gunboat diplomacy.
Not perfect by any means, but it is highly unlikely that Germany would attack Poland, or Japan attack China today. Likewise, that Russia would attack either USA, or any other NATO country.
If noting else, because all the major nuclear powers (USA, Russia, China) are fully aware that starting a war against each other would be “mutual assured destruction” (MAD), or at least too costly to be considered.
Let’s hope that no madman in either one of those countries get in a position where he could “hit that button” alone, without checks and balances.
Not sure, but I could find out tomorrow. (Or you can Google it)
Still in Korea.
Because people are more civilized and enlightened now as opposed to in the past? (Haven’t people been saying that for a long time?)
In fact just the other day Admiral Scott, Commander, US Pacific Fleet, remarked he would launch a nuclear strike against China “next week” if President Donald Turmp ordered it.
I’m sure you remember our previous President Obama going hand-in-hand with enlightened Europe into Libya. That turned out well. Or President Bush into Iraq and Afghanistan.
So maybe the Americans are the warmongers?
This year we celebrate seventy years of India/Pakistan division and the wars, millions of dead and displaced, and nuclear weapons that created. (You’d think after seventy years they would have solved the issue?)
And on and on and on. We all kill each other as much now as we ever did. You’re not a fool so you know this. It’s just that hopey-dreamy stuff that deludes people into thinking that ‘this time will be different.’ This time the tool-using apes have achieved enlightenment and are no longer driven by fear, desire, envy or pride.
Maybe just maybe Europe learned after two destructive world wars that left the continent in the hands of outside powers, that to fight wars are a zero sum game. The world is so entwined that everyone loses on war. That USA keeps a military to fight of an alien attack is your choice. After the nuke all you had to do was say, mess with us and we nuke you. People will believe it, USA is that unpredictable.
I just wish US stores would carry some of the actual good food they have over there. Seriously, Wäsa crispbread is worse than lutefisk. But the pate and stuff in tubes is pretty dang good.
Wasa Crispbread is Swedish. Try Norwegian Flatbread Korni and you’ll love it: http://www.kavli.no/Produkter-og-varemerker/Korni/Korni-Flatbroed
Not to mention Caviar. Not the Russian variety made from Sturgeon Roe, but the Norwegian one in tubes, made from smoked cod roe from Lofoten: https://www.mills.no/mills/produkter/kaviar/
OK, there MAY be some roe from Alaskan Cod mixed in with the cheaper brands made in Sweden, but not Mills.
This week, at a Tattoo, I have seen the band and drill company of Norway’s ‘H.M. Kongens Garde’.
I can confirm, the participants had no bar codes tattooed, at least not on the visible parts of their skin.
They presented an impressive and precise drill performance; I liked it very much.
There was also the ‘United States Army Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps’, no second to the Norwegians.
My impression: The same nearly perfect precision, but, may be, a bit more challenging drill figures.