America’s melting pot is history’s sole exception of E pluribus unum inclusivity: a successful multiracial society bound by a common culture, language and values. But this is a historic aberration with a future that is now in doubt.
A group of 50 conservative foreign policy elites denounced Donald Trump in an open letter. Is there a group of past Democratic wise men and women who can commensurately “police their own” and so warn us about Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton? It won’t happen because Clinton is a fixture of the foreign policy establishment.
Since the 1980s, the neoconservatives have made up the elite of the GOP – despite their unease with the conservative orthodoxy of border enforcement, fierce resistance to gun control and opposition to abortion. Now, a few neoconservatives are reinventing themselves again and returning to the Democrats to support Hillary Clinton. We could call them “neoliberals.”
In a sane world, it would be utter folly for ISIS to try to repeat a 9/11-like terrorist attack. It makes little sense for Russia to annex the Baltic states in the manner of the Crimea. It would be stupid for China to prompt a sea or air fight with Japan or Taiwan. Nonetheless, all these powers may convince themselves the perceived benefits outweigh the costs.
California depends on a tiny elite class for about half of its income tax revenue. Yet many of these wealthy taxpayers are fleeing the 40-million-person state, angry over paying 12 percent of their income for lousy public services.
Politicians glad-hand, pander and kiss babies as they seek to become megaphones for majority opinions. But ideologues are different. They often brood and lecture that their utopian dreams are not shared by the supposedly less informed public.
In general, if voters are content with the current foreign, economic, social and cultural policies of the Obama administration, then the progressive convert Clinton would likely ensure that those policies continue for at least four more years. If, on the other hand, a voter feels Obama has been, in the words of Trump, a “disaster,” then professed conservative Trump would represent a shift in the opposite direction.
When immigration was controlled, measured and coupled with a confident approach to assimilation, America thrived. Various ethnic groups enriched America with diverse art, food, music and literature while accepting a common culture of American values and institutions. Problems arose only when immigration was often illegal, in mass and without emphasis on assimilation.
Like their ancient counterparts, modern migrants on the poorer or less stable side of a border are ambiguous about what they want. They seek out the security and bounty of mostly Western systems – whether European or American – but not necessarily to surrender their own cultural identities and values.
The road to Hiroshima and the massive loss of life in the Pacific was paved by unprovoked Japanese aggression at Pearl Harbor. Americans and their president should remember the lessons of that surprise attack 75 years ago this year.
Mexico’s elites support illegal immigration because it results in an estimated $25 billion sent back in remittances to Mexico each year. American elites have ways of navigating around the downsides of illegal immigration. They can avoid crowded schools and low-income neighborhoods, and they can easily pay the higher taxes that can result from illegal immigration.
John Kerry recently visited Hiroshima, purportedly as a precursor to a planned visit by President Obama, who is rumored to be considering an apology to Japan for America’s dropping of atomic bombs 71 years ago. The horrific bombings are inexplicable without examining the context in which they occurred.
Constitutional nations with common traditions of freedom of the individual, self-criticism, and tolerance of dissent and difference are becoming rare these days. Without shared military power and cooperation, Westerners can either all hang together or surely we will hang separately.