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One example I can think of is the Afghanistan withdrawal, thinking that exiting the country would be a win for America in ending the war without giving any real thought to the consequences.
Other examples have been our inability to counter Russia and China on the world stage, it seems like China especially has a lot of momentum whereas the US is debating issues that have nothing to do with our standing in the world.
The entire Afghanistan war seems to be an example of defining problems as we would like them to be instead of the way they are and in only in relation to ourselves. I understand it was a very complicated situation but after driving the Taliban from power it seemed our mission changed and we believed we could encourage an ancient culture to change and be able to govern themselves in a way we believed they should. We still seemed to be thinking we did it in Japan after World War II, we did it in South Korea we can do it here. At least it seems that way on the surface.
I'd elect the "strategic narcissism" which was on full display in the United States after the Soviet Union collapsed. Numerous "serious" TV chat shows, such as Charlie Rose, went on at great length about how American companies could capitalize on this collapse and how Russia was just a tad away from becoming a democracy. I recall thinking how arrogant and ignorant all of these "great minds" were. All of this wishful chatter, the result of wishful thinking, was sooner or later going to come to nothing but disappointment. Embarrassing to listen to the "expert" ignorami displaying their ignorance of history. You can see where that got us.
The most stark example I can think of is our belief that dictators like Putin and the CCP would organically defer to our system of capitalism and freedom of citizens just because we thought it was clear that we had the superior system. The irony is that Canada’s Trudeau has bought into Klaus Schwab’s WEF/ NWO concepts that people are to be subjugated and forced to follow what elites tell them to do. The great system that we have has morphed into a mutation of capitalism and communism. A prime example of this is the Covid scam that the US govt has used to institute communistic style tyranny. Without going too out far on a tangent…. Our system was assumed by our leadership of the past, like Reagan, ( who actually had a shred of integrity) to be omnipotent just because it liberated its citizens to be productive and self reliant. We failed so badly that our current Govt is bought and paid for by the CCP.
To me the most errant demeanor causing oversight of the realities that make things work is the way this country over played the benefits from letting China (in particular) dominate the market place. Though I believe that those in power in our government soon noticed that that China was taking all the profit it could get for building a military which now is a serious threat to ours. We ignored the actual disparities that the people and environment was put under for the sake of those profiting from the trade off of imports from them. There was a banker that became a Congressman that suggested early on that we have a tariff on things made in conditions that our law would deem as illegal. Low wages, unsafe environments, and other basic living standards and legal rights our country's laws demand exist. Frankly, I'd add another potential in that "conversation" that would have the funds acquired by the tariff put in a bank and used to help the governments of such entities to retroactively address such concerns. The means of execution need not completely match ours. Though the results should improve (even past matters) and so be supported for doing so.
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