Vivek’s Cassandra Problem
Presidential candidate and potential First Rapper Vivek Ramaswamy’s greatest mistake is, apparently, being “unserious” about foreign policy—an increasingly interesting phrase that’s thrown out by our “serious” foreign policy experts such as Adam Kinzinger, David Frum, and Will Hurd, to demonstrate whom they consider declasse. After all, Kinzinger, Frum, Hurd and company have led to unquantifiable prosperity and success in the last quarter century. You have to believe them, because it surely isn’t measurable by normal sensory perceptions or metrics.
Ramaswamy doesn’t want to continue a proxy war in Ukraine. Ramaswamy doesn’t want to treat any country besides America as special, including Israel. Ramaswamy wants to target cartels on America’s border with American military, instead of safeguarding Ukraine’s borders and subsiding European welfare states. Ramaswamy is attempting a functional and applicable “America First”, trying to translate a catchy worldview into tangible action. The sophisticates hate that.
The reality of Ukraine is, however, grim.
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The hyped “counteroffensive” failed, by all measures. The Ukraine First Caucus has accepted that. The Intel community warns that it is not salvageable. The people have soured on another forever war. As Alex Ward writes in Politico, “The three top-polling Republicans for the presidential nomination all have one thing in common: they don’t want to commit the United States to defend other governments, namely in Ukraine and Taiwan.” An unnamed officer (it’s always an unnamed officer) finally figured out the reality of Ukraine as well. “One U.S. official, who didn’t want to run afoul of the administration by offering real views on the record, said the realities of the counteroffensive are sinking in around Washington.”
Everyone sensible knew that 45 thousand troops (nine brigades) aren’t enough for a counteroffensive against an entrenched great power enemy with nuclear weapons, who has the capability and intention to escalate. Ramaswamy’s fault has been to channel what most American people instinctively know. But according to our neoconservative elites, that truth is Russian disinformation.
The story of Cassandra is a classic, purely because it is a natural human instinct for most people to hate those few who display even a modicum of dispassionate foresight. It demonstrates their own ideological myopia. Ramaswamy, given his credentials, is supposed to be an elite, and go with the “consensus opinion” of the elites. He refuses to do so, for whatever reasons, and is therefore a class traitor in their eyes. It is a tale as old as time.