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Americans Are Losing the Only Fight Worth Having
Bill Bonner

DUBAI – A man walks over the footbridge across an artificial lake in an artificial town. 

On the other side, he unrolls a mat, kneels, and bows in prayer, facing the Holy City of Mecca.

This morning at 6 a.m., it is already almost unbearably hot and humid.

Later in the day, the heat will intensify, reflecting off the glass and concrete towers all around. It will be about 105 degrees before noon.

Dubai is an improbable place for a modern city. And an improbable place for your editor…

Between the desert on one side and the Persian Gulf on the other, Dubai looks as though it might be swept away by one or the other at any moment.

It was a poor backwater until the 1960s. Then, it discovered oil, discarded slavery, and decided to become a kind of Las Vegas, without the entertainment.

Here, the women are covered up, the liquor is locked away, and the summer heat makes it almost impossible to go outdoors.

But here we are, Dear Reader, eyes wide open…

Alternative Press

The purpose of our trip is business. We join our colleagues and partners from around the world – Dubai off season being a convenient and relatively inexpensive hub.

This network of publishers and writers now stretches from the U.S. to India, China, Australia, and Japan, which is why Dubai is a practical meeting-up place. And it reaches more readers every day than The New York Times and The Washington Post put together.

It is an “alternative” press… full of ideas and opinions that are sometimes too attractive to be true… and sometimes, too true to be attractive. Here at the Diary, we aim for the second category… having no illusion that we always hit the mark.

Grandest Bust

Yesterday, for example, we took up the issue of war. As renowned American journalist H.L. Mencken pointed out, “It is the dizziest, gaudiest, grandest, damnedest sort of bust that the human mind can imagine.”

It is also a rip-off.

For better or for worse, millions of years of natural selection made us what we are. Those who couldn’t defend themselves didn’t survive. Their genes were not passed on. Instead, the DNA we carry comes from fighters.

The best defense is a good offense. Among the apparently routine practices of ancient peoples was that of attacking and killing their neighbors, preferably exterminating the tribe completely… and mutilating their bodies to give out a warning to any who got away: Don’t mess with us!

We are the descendants, obviously, of those who committed the genocide, not of the victims. And we got the message, now embedded as instinct. We salute our officers. We laud our war heroes. We thank our “warriors” for their service.

But in the modern world, the attractive truth is that war is no longer a paying proposition… and the unattractive truth is that our warriors are little more than gladiators.

They fight in a gaudy and dangerous sport for the amusement of the folks in the cheap seats… and the profits of those in the sky-boxes.

Oldest Racket

The U.S. faces no enemy capable of invading it; it can easily defend itself against any plausible attack. And even the trivial threat of terrorism would probably go away if the U.S. withdrew its troops from overseas and minded its own business.

Like every other government program, military spending is maybe one part real defense and three parts humbug and bamboozle… extracting money from the public so that it can be passed along to shifty enterprises along the Dulles Corridor… and favored Deep State groups across the country.

Major General Smedley Butler was right. In 1935, the two-time Medal of Honor winner let fly on his career:

War is a racket. It always has been. It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives.

A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of the people. Only a small “inside” group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few, at the expense of the very many. Out of war a few people make huge fortunes.

The only fight worth having is a fight against other people trying to tell you what to do. Alas, even with the most expensive military the world has ever seen… that is a fight Americans are losing.

More to come… connecting the dots between war, win-win, tariffs… and the latest tweet from the President of the United States of America.






Bill Bonner is the founder and president of Agora Publishing, one of the world's most successful consumer newsletter publishing companies, and the author of the free daily e-mail The Daily Reckoning. Bill's passion for international travel and big ideas are reflected in the company he's successfully built. In 1979, he began publishing International Living and Hulbert's Financial Digest. Since then, Agora has grown to include dozens of newsletters focusing on finance, health and travel. Since the early '90s Bill has vigorously expanded from Agora's home base in Baltimore, opening offices in London, Paris, Bonn, Waterford, Ireland and Johannesburg, South Africa.

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