VDH Contra Mundum

Against all comers, VDH holds that the US has grown less imperialist and more isolationist under the Bush doctrine. Here's how we're not imperialists.
While Democratic leaders demand hammering the Chinese, and the Europeans erect barriers, U.S. willingness to incur trade debt and not regulate foreign investment has almost overnight jumpstarted China as a global player —dangerous of course, but perhaps less so if it has a stake in the world commercial order. India is the same story. Tens of millions of its citizens have overnight seen a revolutionary material improvement in their standard of living. This has mostly been due once again to classical liberalism on the part of the United States, which resisted protectionism and allowed billions in capital and millions of jobs to be outsourced to the Indians — often at terrible costs in unemployment and readjustment here at home.
As a result while a socialist, subsidized, and protectionist Europe racks up trade surpluses, despite its utopian rhetoric, it does far less to bring others up to Western standards of commerce and consumerism. That might explain why, if the Germans and French do not appreciate us, the Indians and Chinese apparently do. How odd that we worry over the infantile rants of 140 million envious and ignore the begrudging admiration of 2 billion increasingly confident.

A Conservative would argue that we have no business bringing the rest of the world up at the expense of the livelihoods of our own people. The American president's first duty is to his own citizens. And in my world consumerism is a bad thing -- does vice have standards now? I suppose Bush would say that long-term, this is an investment in peace and stability for us. And St. John Chrysostom would argue that raising people out of abject poverty is a prerequisite for a true spiritual life. The goal would be not merely to accumulate wealth, but to acquire the means for the leisure that both prayer and culture require. As long as you're living hand to mouth, you're not going to be reading the Bible, in other words. No time.

Nevertheless, I love how he sees the emptiness of Elite Europe's charity. Click the link for his take on our growing isolationism.