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Robert Kagan on The World America Made

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Robert Kagan, one of the country’s most influential strategic thinkers, looks at whether America is in decline and shares his view of what the world might look like if the United States let its influence wane. The World America Made  investigates what the world would look like if America were to reduce its role as a global leader in order to focus on solving its problems at home and asserts that the current pessimism about America’s stature is misplaced.

 

Guests:

Robert Kagan

Comments [20]

Pave from NYC

I heard Robert Kagan speak today on Leonard Lopeid show and was not impressed.

What he seems to be making is excuses or trying to justify our reckless involvement and invasions into other countries!

He seems to somehow paint it as an inevitable by product of our super power status and in some ways as even out of our control!

I mean, take the Iranian issue for example!

He said that it's Iran that's provoking this issue and that its' Iran that may 'attack' our naval forces and or start some kind of a conflict in the region.

I mean, c'mon...we are sending our carrier forces literally miles from the Iranian coast and this guy is saying that it's Iran that is or may attack our forces!

Think about this for a second, pls! Reverse the roles! What if it was Iran that was sending it's carriers into let's say Pequot Sound...up by Vancouver!

I mean, it's the closest thing that I can come up with!! How would our country react? And if it was Iran that told us, US, we can not have nuclear weapons...while we, the US, is the world's biggest nuclear super power and the world's biggest arms merchant!!

Obviously Israel plays a big role here regarding this whole nuclear issue. NOT that if tomorrow Iran gets the nukes that it would use them against Israel...I think almost no one believes that...they are not that stupid..but it's more of making sure that Israel (with it's big uncle...Sam) remains the ONLY nuclear super power in the area!

They just don't want any competition from Iran (US and Israel do not!)

By neutralizing Iraq, the US, with Israel's help, have helped to create the situation that we're in today...where Iran wants once again, to be the regional power in the area, which it has historically been!

PG
NYC

Feb. 22 2012 07:07 PM
Shirley from upper east side

In this 21st century if we need to declare war, My God, have we progressed?
USA wake up. Do not let a government go to war again.

We are brought to our knees by this Iraq and Afghanistan war. Alqaaeda is not in one country, they are everywhere and the more we waste our dollars bombing other countries, we here, in the USA will be miserable without health care, baby boomers old and homeless, the Tappan zee bridge disintegrating and nON democratic countries becoming our monetary rulers.

This gentleman, if he is a thinker, he is thinking selfishly. He is Israel's pawn and stupidly so.

Feb. 22 2012 02:54 PM
tmra from NYC

You Republicans keep saying there is not enough money to turn around the debt in defense and raising taxes on big corporations and the rich. WELL DUH! But these things can add up and make progress towards cutting the budget or funding other projects. Why is that so difficult to understand?

Feb. 22 2012 02:08 PM
Ken

I can't believe your guest seriously suggested that defense spending is not a major part of the federal budget. I could almost take him seriously before that, even if I completely disagreed with his warmongering. Now I just have to ask which contractor he's working for.

Feb. 22 2012 02:01 PM
Richard Johnston from Manhattan upper west side

We are in serious trouble if jovial, arrogant, militaristic bullies like this are in charge. He says he's glad we do not have Saddam Hussein around but not that he's glad we spent trillions of dollars of treasure achieving that.

Feb. 22 2012 01:57 PM

Thus markets will move to area of the most profitablity. If labor cost rise move elsewhere,tariffs too high hire lobbists...

Feb. 22 2012 01:55 PM
ericf

How might proposed changes to military budget etc affect US dependency on other countries for base locations, etc.

Feb. 22 2012 01:55 PM
b57 from Bklyn

Robert Kagan is wrong about the law of physics - rise and fall of a power. What goes up doesn't always mean must come down.

Feb. 22 2012 01:55 PM
jgarbuz from Queens

What "terrible price?" Iraq was a GREAT VICTORY turned into a defeat by the liberal media. Granted,when it turned out that there were NO WMDs, it was obviously a blunder, but when you consider in Korea we lost 33,000 in Vietnam some $58,000, and neither were victories, the price of losing 4,000 in Iraq, while tragic, is frankly "nothing" compared to what we lost in previous wars. And those soldiers were volunteers, not conscripts. Let's not over-exaggerate. We botched the IRaq war by not leaving quickly after getting Saddam, and by not taking $1 trillion worth of crude oil to pay for it. That was OUR mistake, and due to liberal biases that always snatch defeat from the jaws of victory!

Feb. 22 2012 01:54 PM

True labor is only one factor but profit is king.

Feb. 22 2012 01:53 PM

Decline is such a broad word. Decline as a economic power or the world's policeman? America is a great country and will continue to be so for the forseeable future.

Feb. 22 2012 01:51 PM

I love that he brought up the New American Century think tank. Bush had alot of members in his cabinet and that is why we fought an illegal war with Iraq. Rumsfeld, Cheney and Wolfwitz were all members

Feb. 22 2012 01:50 PM
jgarbuz from Queens

To morfin

Sure, assuming the guy working for 20 cents/hr can do the job as well as the guy making $20 an hour. If the guy making 20c can do the job as well, he'll probably be asking for raises very soon, or leaving the country to try to get here and make $15 an hour. Chinese wages are raising, and US wages have fallen, but there are other factors besides labor costs. FOr example, how close are you to your main market? Or do you have spend a lot to ship your goods abroad? And you have to know what YOUR market wants. They may be prepared to pay more for certain features. Labor is important, but it's not the only factor.

Feb. 22 2012 01:50 PM
RL

wow, there a lot of things that this guys is saying as if they are established facts, but they are not... not even close! Too bad that public radio doesn't debate folks like this.

Feb. 22 2012 01:46 PM

But globalization is a reality. The "decline" of the middle/working class is the by product of capitalism. Would you hire someone at $20 or $0.20?

Feb. 22 2012 01:44 PM
jgarbuz from Queens

Policemen are not always popular, even in the communities they are trying to root criminals out of. The US inherited the role of world policeman from Great Britain after WWII. We didn't want the job, but we couldn't leave it to the USSR either. We became the sheriff, not because we wanted the job, but nobody else in Dodge City was willing to do it. And few wanted Stalin to do it, for sure.

Feb. 22 2012 01:40 PM
Sheldon from Brooklyn

I think it's more the decline of the American middle & working classes, in the age of a global economy, that is the real problem.

Feb. 22 2012 01:37 PM

I agree it seem people want the 1950/60s back.

Feb. 22 2012 01:36 PM
roberto del valle from el barrio

this is nothing other, than absurdist "flat earth", american exceptionalism. american corporate/political self interest, has created horrors in the world, and continues to. you have to be insane, crazy, stupid, or delusional, to argue othewrwise. [or at least, have a demented political agenda].

Feb. 22 2012 12:53 PM
George from Brooklyn

How has the small government/anti-tax movement hurt the greatness of this country?

Feb. 22 2012 09:01 AM

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