We’re Moving

October 8, 2009

I apologize for the extreme inattention I’ve shown you, my loyal readers.  It’s been a busy month for me but that is no excuse.  Thankfully, I think my life is slowing down and fortunately I haven’t been entirely negligent.  In an effort to bring you better content and subject matter we have decided to move to a new website, bristling with new features and subjects.  It is still very much a work in progress- though aren’t we all- so be kind and hopefully our best days are ahead of us.

Thank you, and I hope to see you over at The Inductive.


Change the Japanese Can Believe In

September 21, 2009

On August 26th, Yukio Hatoyama, President of the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ), then the main opposition party to the long-reigning Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), wrote an editorial for the New York Times on a new path for Japan. In the August 30th lower house election, Hatoyama and his party won a landslide victory that gave Japan its first significant regime change since the post-World War II US occupation.  Hatoyama and his party took power on September 16th on a largely anti-bureaucracy, anti-globalization, anti-corporate platform that stresses decreased economic reliance on the United States and increased diplomatic and economic ties with China. Read the rest of this entry »


Can We Win in Afghanistan, III ctd.

September 4, 2009

Today, as a follow up to my post about the need for a new strategic focus in Afghanistan, I lay out the two crucial strategic goals of the War in Afghanistan.

The most important goal of the war has already largely been successful, namely the removal of al-Queda from Aghanistan.  However, any acclaim for accomplishing the initial primary goal of the war in Afghanistan was lost as al-Queda was allowed to retrench on the other side of the Pakistani border while NATO continued to fight and die in Afghanistan against the Taliban.  I think a primary strategic objective is to no longer treat the Taliban as the main enemy in Afghanistan, even if that is who we are fighting.   The Taliban are a significant segment of the Afghan citizenry, they ran the entire country for a decade, and still run more effective local governments than Kabul does.   Thus, they are not an military enemy that can be defeated but a hostile population must be fragmented, placated and won over. Read the rest of this entry »


Can We Win in Afghanistan, III

September 3, 2009

Sorry for all the dead time, moving is awful.  We’re back and hopefully posting will be heavy in the days to come.  We have some big stuff in the pipeline, and its great to be back in the saddle.

In earlier posts I have laid out my strong opinion that the war in Afghanistan is of less strategic importance than the Obama administration investment of resources would indicate.  While I still feel that it is not in the long term strategic interests of the United States to have a significant presence in Afghanistan, and the possibility of failure is very real, I have begun to wonder if most of the claims about Afghanistan are normative rather than positive.  In other words, whether or not we should be in Afghanistan is secondary to what is the best real world way forward given our commitments and obligations.

Read the rest of this entry »


We will return to your regularly scheduled programming… Ctd

August 27, 2009

Posting is going to be light this week because we are moving.  Never fear, we have a bunch of great stuff in the pipeline once we establish a new HQ.

In the meantime, RIP Ted Kennedy.


Food on the Attack

August 24, 2009

There has been a steady increase in concern with the way food is created in this country, perhaps peaking with then Presidential Candidate Obama mentioning this article by Michael Pollan (and then recanting after there was a backlash).  Michelle Obama white house garden was actually proposed in that article, though most of the other advice (like an end to food subsidies) will probably be ignored.  It has become undeniable and even uncontroversial that Americans don’t eat well, and that the problem stems from too much grain and grain fed meat.  However, what is much less well known is the role of factory farming in MRSA, the antibiotic resistant bacteria that kills more people than AIDs every year in this country. Read the rest of this entry »


Diet Healthcare Reform

August 17, 2009

The big news of the day, at least according to Drudge, is that Team Obama is laying the groundwork for removing the public option from their health care plan. This would be part of a larger strategy shift, which has seen Obama rephrase “health care reform” as “health insurance reform” after his personal popularity and public support for health reform diminished as the debate soured.
Read the rest of this entry »