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Op-ed

The short life of the U.S. empire

The U.S. dominated the world in the 1960s as no nation before. We were winning the Cold War with the U.S.S.R. Europe and Asia were still recovering from World War II. We had a lock on all technology, produced everything that we consumed and exported the world's best products. Our version of apartheid had legally ended. Eisenhower's program of mass deportation and Cesar Chavez's cooperation with the government limited illegal immigration. Five U.S. and three European companies controlled 95 percent of the world's oil reserves mainly in the Middle East and Africa.

For five decades we have rigorously followed Emerson's observation that "foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds" — adored by little politicians who have been intellectually unable to react to changed domestic and international circumstances. In the current stage of our democracy, multiculturalism, sexual freedom and intolerance of inequality have eliminated deference to any authority, which will ultimately produce anarchy. Tyranny by a mob mentality produced by social media provides anonymous freedom that allows millions of volatile citizens to instantly influence national policy.

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In November, we will elect the most unpopular and corrupt presidential candidate in modern American history; the winner will be faced with the stark reality that a foolish consistency in policies would be deadly. Radical Muslim immigrant attacks are becoming the new normal; center city violence and conflict between police and angry black youth has become rampant; and continued unbridled immigration of low skilled Hispanics is a root cause of black citizens' unemployment and hopeless situation. National survival requires forcing a fractious electorate to accept governance for the common good.

Our reign is over.

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Having recovered from 200 years of shame and humiliation at the hands of the West, China's mercantilist economy is now equal to the U.S. — after 20 years of technological transfer by U.S. companies naively expecting preferred access to Chinese markets. Determined to return to their position as the center of all under Heaven, China is challenging us around the world economically and politically, while building a modern military to push us out of East Asia and simultaneously destroying our industrial base with a U.S. free trade policy that accepts the export of jobs in exchange for low cost consumer goods.

And after double crossing Russia on NATO, fomenting a coup that displaced an elected president favorable to Russia in Ukraine, and placing sanctions on them, we have driven Russia into an anti-U.S. alliance with China.

The E.U. is also unraveling and no longer a reliable ally. Germany has slowly moved toward Russia and China economically and politically. Brexit is the beginning of dissolution of the E.U., with Syrian refugees accelerating a partition of Europe.

After 200 years of Christian domination, a resurgent Islamic movement started nearly 100 years ago to drive the West out of Muslim territories. Having abrogated concession agreements with Western companies without retribution from the U.S., some Muslim nations used oil revenues to support radical Islamic groups. Meanwhile, U.S. government action ricocheted from one debacle to another, destroying authoritarian governments that controlled the Islamic fundamentalists. The U.S. has been forced out of the Middle East, and the radicals are now attacking the homeland.

We must normalize relations with Russia and reverse the Russia-China axis that we created. It is essential to work with Russia to destroy Islamic radicals.

The secular Sunni Kurd peshmerga is the only group in the Middle East that has consistently defeated ISIS. The Kurds have carved out and control a large portion of northern Syria. We should support a Kurdish state and enlist the peshmerga formally as our foreign legion under Special Forces officers armed with our latest weapons coordinated with U.S. and Russian air power and use the peshmerga to establish safe havens for Syrian refugees.

On trade, we should implement a proposal that Warren Buffett made in 2003 to replace our destructive policies. This would eliminate the trade deficit, increase U.S. employment and tax revenues, and avoid trade wars. We should also temporarily halt all immigration and require undocumented immigrants to register as non-citizen guest workers. With the Buffett system and zero immigration there will be a significant increase in jobs and reduced city unemployment and racial tension.

Continuing along the current path we will end up with anarchy and an altered form of Sondheim's most successful composition: Bring in the generals — don't bother they are already here.

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Charles Campbell, a resident of Woodstock, is a retired senior vice president of Gulf Oil Corp. His e-mail is lochawe@verizon.net.


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