Romney – Bush Redux
A few days ago I did a post on Romney’s foreign policy. If it looks familiar it should – his foreign policy advisors are mostly retreads from the Bush/Cheney administration.
Today there are a couple of new posts from people to the right of me on Romney’s militaristic foreign policy. From Daniel Larison we have:
The campaign is right to bristle at the neoconservative label. That’s not because the label is inaccurate. Romney’s foreign policy statements often sound as if they are drafted by Weekly Standard staff writers. Except for McCain, Romney has been campaigning as the most unapologetic adherent to neoconservative foreign policy views of any Republican nominee. Regardless of the “range of backgrounds” of his advisers, the diversity of their views is not very great.Two-thirds of them worked for George W. Bush in some capacity. The campaign bristles at the description because they understand that the neoconservative label is politically damaging. That doesn’t seem to stop Romney from giving voters every reason to believe that his foreign policy would be a neoconservative one.
The second comes from OTB’s Steven Taylor:
1. Romney here appears to be saying that if he has to choose, he chooses military power over taking care of the social needs of the citizenry. Even recognizing that military power is important, this is a telling statement. It is odd, or so it seems to me, to so easily dismiss the importance of social needs and to, to use Erik’s word, sneer at the Europeans for diverting more resources to that than to military power.
2. Of course, an underlying question: how big is big enough? As Doug Mataconis noted recently, he US already spends the most in raw terms than any other country in the world. Indeed, the US spends six times was the second place country (China) spends and over 11 times what the number three county (Russia) spends. In terms of the Europe quip and Romney, it is worth noting that four of the top ten in raw spending are European countries (France, the UK, Germany, and Italy). Further, along those same lines, Doug notes:
If you add in the military budgets of the NATO and non-NATO allies in the Top 20, it amounts to more than 70% of the worldwide military spending, dwarfing the spending of nations like China, Russia, and Iran to a considerable degree. Based on sheer numbers alone, the idea that the United States isn’t spending enough on defense, a refrain one hears frequently from the hawkish wing of the GOP, is quite simply absurd.
Romney will give the wheel to the neocons again. I don’t like a lot of what Obama has done but I sure don’t want the Weekly Standard crew in charge again. We should all know how that worked out last time.