If W’s statement about running this country like a business holds out:
- The dollar will be worth about 60% less than the Euro
- He and Disappearing Dick will get zero interest government backed loans so that they can buy T-bills.
- Female federal workers will start posing for Playboy’s Women of Federal Government issue.
Why is it that this administration has decided to isolate America from the rest of the world? We won’t back the Kyoto accord. We waffle on supporting the War Crimes Court. We decry other countries for abusing the basic freedoms of its citizen while ours are brushed aside by an Attorney General so afraid of the human body that he has nude statues covered.
Self-interest. This national is firmly wrapped in itself. Certainly, that is what our leadership displays. And in this day and age, that kind of self-interest imposed isolation is dangerous.
It’s time for someone to it this nation’s leadership down and teach them about the Prisoner’s Dilemma. Mathematician Albert Tucker created the prisoner’s dilemma and it has become the classic zero-sum game example used in biology (see Dawkin’s The Selfish Gene), computer science, social science, etc. It boils down to this:
You and I have been arrested for supposedly committing a crime. The guards put us in separate interrogation rooms. We have the following options, taken from this website, a very good description of the prisoner’s dilemma and discussion of its implications):
- If you confess and I don’t, you go free and I’ll get a five year sentence.
- If I confess and you don’t, I’ll go free and you’ll get a five year sentence.
- If we both confess, we’ll each get three year sentences.
- If neither of us confesses, we’ll each get one year sentences.
It is in our best interest (over time) to do the same thing. This may mean that in the short term we have to make personal sacrifices, overall, we will fair better than if we work via purely selfish directives. (This is what is known as the iterated prisoner’s dilemma.)
Unfortunately, it seems that America, its leadership, and its citizens have all lost sight of this basic rule. We have to work together with our partner’s even though in the short term things may appear to be worse for ourselves personally, the whole is better for it.
Why doesn’t this administration want to sign the Kyoto Accord? It will hurt America industry. Granted, Third World nations do not have meet the same rigorous standards are we do, but we have to lead by example. Why did this administration begrudgingly agree to the War Crimes Court? Because our soldiers were at risk of being prosecuted by it because of actions in Bosnia.
I am sick of the “It’s all about Me” behavior in this country. I’m sick of this country saying, “It’s all about America. Do what we say, definitely, not as we do.”