Foreign Relations: Andrew Bacevich On U.S. Obligations At Home & Abroad
The 'Washington Rules' argument stems from the remnants of Cold War thinking, where many believed that unleashing a tremendous military force could remake the world in America's image. These rules, Bacevich argues, have actually done just the opposite of what they were intended to do, and have led to perpetual war and insolvency rather than peace and stability.
In addition to discussing foreign policy, Bacevich also touched on America's obligations at home. Environmentalism and economic growth, he said, need to be assessed with a different framework than they have in the past. Environmentalism, he says, shouldn't be the sole property of the left—especially when he argues that the very root of right-wing policy is "conservation". And what's more important for conservatives to conserve than the planet which supports our very existence? Finally, in closing, he says that we should be wary of vast market growth. "I don't see that mere growth, an ever-bigger economy, provides a recipe for a good society," he argues. We must begin to think about the purpose and costs of America's actions both at home and abroad, says Bacevich, if we ever hope to tackle the major problems that plague our world.