“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The US Should Not Outsource Sovereignty. What's Up with the US Navy ?

Getting LOST
By James Inhofe
October 30, 2007 Washington Times

What if I were to tell you that at this very moment in the halls of the Senate, legislation is being considered that will govern 70 percent of the earth's surface, threaten the very sovereignty of our country and, worse, without the efforts of a select few, would have become law years ago? What if I added that our enemies are waiting in the wings for us to make this historic blunder by accepting legislation that effectively cedes our autonomy to international organizations such as the United Nations?

If you are of the small percentage of Americans who has heard of the U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea, or simply the Law of the Sea Treaty (LOST), I congratulate you on being ahead of the curve. If you have not heard of LOST, you soon will, as we are gearing up in the Senate for a fight against one of the most far-reaching international challenges to American sovereignty we have ever faced.

LOST was conceived in the late 1970s as a way of governing all activities that occur on and beneath the surface of the world's oceans. The treaty's central aims, those of defining the corridors of water surrounding a country and standardizing the rules of navigation through these corridors, are innocent enough and are probably needed to govern and safeguard the ever-increasing use of the high seas. It is for this reason that the U.S. Navy, as is often touted, has given its endorsement of the treaty. The rules concerning navigation, however, only act as a cover for the treaty's true intent — to subvert the overwhelming economic and military advantages of the United States.

Why then would the Navy support such a treaty? Part of the endorsement stems from the fact that the Navy is highly supportive of the aforementioned rules of navigation. The Navy also argues, and textually it is true, that military activities are exempted. Certainly, if this were the case, many of the fears I have expressed would be allayed. However, this will not prove to be the case.

"Military activities," though exempted, are not defined in the text of the treaty. What is military in nature to the Navy may not be interpreted in the same manner by an international tribunal or arbitration panel overseeing such a case. Before you know it, military exercises would be deemed as threats against the maritime ecosystem, stronger sonar designed to combat quieter enemy submarines would be deemed damaging to marine wildlife, and activities conducted within the territorial waters of another country would be intelligence or propaganda operations, not necessarily "military." Private contractors, who are currently being employed to deliver military assets into areas of operations, would also be deemed ineligible for an exemption. All of these activities would be subject to compulsory dispute resolution before an international tribunal.

It is important to note that no foreign or international entity could actually force the United States into any international court. The United States could go on about its business as if everyone else in the world is misinterpreting the treaty — but our standing in the world would suffer because of this.

No matter how right we may be in our conduct on the high seas, this treaty will give our enemies the opportunity to stand in front of the United Nations and criticize the United States for its unwillingness to fulfill its treaty obligations. We do not need a treaty that puts our standing in the world in this predicament. Our enemies are waiting for this opportunity.

Sen. James Inhofe, Oklahoma Republican, is a member of the Armed Services Committee and ranking member if the Environment and Public Works Committee.


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  4. Follow the President, be a true a true blue Republican, not one in name only.

    Open Borders, UN superemacy in foreign affairs and UN Soveriegnty over the sea floor.

    Increased Federal spending and entitlements. rah! rah!.

    It's what being a Republican is all about -

    Show some compassion
    Vote Republican Values
    Vote Foley & Craig!
    The Republican Way!

  5. This treaty is all about following the money.

    Who's pushing it and who stands to gain?

    The total sellout continues unabated.

    Gains made with American blood and treasure over 100 years signed away by an elite few who are getting cut in on the action.

  6. How much has the US invested in the navy over the past one hundred and fifty years? What was the purpose of that investment and what has been the benefit to the world?

    Why would we want Hugo Chavez and Vladimir Putin, Iran, Somalia, Chad, Cuba, North Korea and for that matter any other country or American politicians on the left to have a forum for fixing something that is not broke?

  7. Hugo and his Chinese allies are making inroads, commercially, across Latin America,

    Ecuador, Panama, Venezuela, Brazil and now Costa Rica, all moving further into the Chinese sphere of influence.

    But don't worry, they are only Communists, not religious whackos.

    We can do business

  8. While the march to Victory continues in Iraq.
    What did you think it'd look like?

    BAGHDAD (Associated Press) -- The British defense secretary confirmed Wednesday that Britain plans to turn over security to Iraqis in the oil-rich southeastern province of Basra in mid-December.

    Defense Secretary Des Browne cited an improving security situation in Iraq and the increasing ability of Iraqi forces and government institutions to handle their own security.

    "The Iraqi government and the coalition commanders have now agreed that Basra province should move to provincial Iraqi control in mid-December," he said at a news conference.

    Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki said Monday that the Iraqis were prepared to take over security for the mainly Shiite province in mid-December.

    Earlier this month, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said Britain will halve its remaining force of 5,000 by next spring.

    Johnny and Tommy are marching home
    Hoorah! Hoorah!

  9. ARGHANDAB, Afghanistan (Associated Press) -- Afghan, U.S. and Canadian troops have surrounded a pocket of some 250 Taliban fighters who have commandeered people's homes in villages just outside Afghanistan's major southern city, officials said Wednesday.

    Hundreds of Afghans _ their cars and tractors piled high with personal possessions _ were fleeing the battleground about 15 miles north of Kandahar city.

    The provincial police chief said the combined forces have killed some 50 Taliban in three days of fighting. Three police and one Afghan soldier have also died, Sayed Agha Saqib said.

    "The people are fleeing because the Taliban are taking over civilian homes," Saqib said. "There have been no airstrikes. We are trying our best to attack those areas where there are no civilians, only Taliban."

    Saqib said 16 suspected Taliban have been arrested during the operation.

    The fighters moved into the Arghandab district of Kandahar province this week, about two weeks after the death of a powerful tribal leader, Mullah Naqib, who had kept the Taliban militants out of his region.

    "He was a good influence for his tribe. He was supporting the government," Saqib said. "After he died the Taliban were thinking they would go to Arghandab and cause trouble for Kandahar city. But now they're surrounded and they're in big trouble. We are capturing and killing them and I don't think it will cause any problem for Kandahar."

  10. WASHINGTON (Associated Press) -- Karen Hughes, who led efforts to improve the U.S. image abroad and was one of President Bush's last remaining advisers from the close circle of Texas aides, will leave the government at the end of the year, she told The Associated Press.

    Hughes said she plans to quit her job as undersecretary of state and return to Texas, although improving the world's view of the United States is a "long-term challenge" that will outlast her.

    "This will take a number of years," Hughes said in an interview to announce her departure. She was informing her staff of her decision Wednesday morning and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was announcing it.

    Bush had picked Hughes two years ago to retool the way the United States sells its policies, ideals and views overseas. A former television reporter and media adviser, Hughes' focus has been to change the way the United States engages and responds to criticism or misinformation in the Muslim world.

    "Negative events never help," Hughes said when asked how events like last month's shooting of Iraqi civilians by private U.S. security guards in Iraq affects the way the world sees the United States.

  11. Those Chinese, not only have they developed satellite killing technology, but they are stepping up to the next level of space flight.

    BEIJING (Associated Press) -- China will build a new family of rockets, state media said Wednesday, a move that would boost the country's capabilities to put satellites and space stations in space.

    The announcement follows China's successful launch a week ago of its first lunar probe _ a leap forward in the Asian space race. Japan put a probe into orbit around the moon just weeks ago and India is likely to join the rivalry soon, with plans to send its own lunar probe into space in April.

    The new Long March 5 rockets, which can be used to carry communication satellites and lunar probes, will be able to hold greater weight than the current batch.

    They signal China's ambitions to have a greater presence in space in the next 30 to 50 years and desire to compete in the global market to launch commercial satellites, said the China Daily.

    "It will also give China the same launch capabilities as developed countries," Wu Yansheng, the president of China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology, was quoted as saying by the newspaper.

    So silly, those Chinamen.
    Don't they know they have no oil.
    That their scientists and engineers are second rate.
    That against the US and its' retreating presences on the across the seas, it has no chance.

    Why don't all these various "bad guys" see the light, and just surrender to PaxAmericana, now?

  12. As soon as they can, our opponents in the UN will levy sanctions on the US. Our day is coming.

  13. Guilty verdicts over Madrid bombs
    Defendants in the Madrid trial. 3110
    All the accused pleaded "not guilty" during the four-month trial
    A Spanish court has sentenced three men to thousands of years in jail for their part in the Madrid bombings in 2004.

    Moroccans Jamal Zougam and Otman el Ghanoui and Spaniard Emilio Trashorras were convicted of murder, but suspected mastermind Rabei Ahmed was acquitted.

    A total of 28 people faced trial over the blasts on four trains that killed 191 and injured more than 1,800.

    Twenty-one were found guilty of at least one charge and seven were acquitted.

  14. There's a lot of talk on BBC comments that no one serves more than 25 years in Spanish prisons...

  15. China's fuel crisis highlights its struggle with capitalism.

    Diesel shortages in China's political heart, which escaped previous supply crunches unscathed, highlight tensions between the government and its increasingly independent oil firms about who should pay for the country's generous fuel subsidies.

  16. A source at PetroChina said the company would lose 1,500 yuan ($200) a tonne by selling imported diesel at Chinese pumps.

    "The crux of the problem is the state-owned enterprises... you see the remaining contradictions of the state sector in the market economy," said Joseph Yu-shek Cheng, political science professor at the City University of Hong Kong.

    "On the one hand they understand that they have to assume certain political responsibilities, but at the same time they have to look after their own company interests."

  17. There is plenty of cash in the Chinese foreign reserves to pay for that spread, for a while.

    As they transition to market realities. Especially as the market costs continue to rise.

    It will also effect the economy, here. $100 per barrel sweet Saudi crude.

    The US economy growing at a reported 3.9% per annum rate, the Chinese reporting 8.2% growth.