We’re a site of humor. Not today.
The debacle going on in Afghanistan has repercussions that nobody has mentioned. But in order to tell you that story, I have to tell you this one.
Ronald Reagan took office on January 20, 1981, after a miserable four years under Jimmy Carter. The press did their usual tricks. The ‘Reagan Recession’ featured too many homeless to count and 15% inflation (10% according to official government sources). Air traffic controllers belonging to the PATCO union decided in August to go on strike. It was going to be higher wages or no air travel allowed.
In *any* economy, it would have been a disaster. But in 1981? Even worse. Everyone was on the side of the poor, downtrodden, beloved public sector union members. How could Reagan be so cruel as to deny them a pittance of a wage increase in light of the inflation he had caused starting in 1979?
Reagan, by all reports, was pissed. On August 3 he issued an ultimatum: any air traffic controller who failed to report to work within 48 hours would be fired. Today, that means they would be rehired later at a higher salary.
Reagan meant it. On August 5 he fired 11,359 air-traffic controllers, declared a lifetime ban on rehiring any of them by the Federal Aviation Administration, and made sure the Federal Labor Relations Authority decertified the PATCO union on October 22.
That’s what “salting the earth with the tears of your enemy” looks like. It is one of the reasons the ’80s was so great. However, that isn’t what was important about the incident.
Later in his Presidency, Reagan was asked what accomplishment in foreign affairs he considered his most important. His answer? Firing the striking PATCO members. This had profound implications on foreign policy. Every world leader he dealt with knew when he made a hard promise, he would keep it.
Now back to good old Resident Joe.
Joe Biden has abandoned 10,000 to 15,000 Americans in Afghanistan by official counts. Unofficial counts claim it could be as high as 80,000. The United States’ State Department told them a week ago to shelter in place, and everything would be fine.
Yesterday, it issued the following notice:
The airport is in Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan. It took the Taliban less than a week to reconquer their country from the American Empire. The Spanish Reconquista required nearly 700 years. Not that there is a contest.
No wonder the Taliban is celebrating.
America as an Empire is over. Done. It left the shopping mall. Its credit card was revoked. Twitter banned it. The Eagle died. Facebook hosted a live broadcast as every member of congress plucked its feathers on the House floor. The Supreme Court ruled this legal because the Bald Eagle was never the symbol of the Empire.
There are profound implications on domestic policy. What promises has the American Empire made to you? Social Security? Health Care? Job? Grants? Graft? Education? Freedom? What makes you think the American Empire will honor those commitments?
Go ahead and think about it. Those questions weren’t rhetorical.
The BidenReich left thousands and thousands of their servants in a death maze. These were loyal sycophants. They were carrying out the direct will of the powers-that-be. They had a job to do and they were doing it. It was a tough job, too.
Turning America gay was trivial in comparison.
If you think the American Empire is going to honor any domestic promise, you are a fool. It won’t, and not just because it can’t. It won’t because it just doesn’t care about anyone. Not it servants, its people, or its institutions.
Maybe we’ll get a Reagan II if the voting machines develop benevolent AI.
Tomorrow, the New Resistance begins. You’ll read about it here. We’ll try to be funny again on Monday.