Matthew Yglesias is a fairly reliable Voice of the Crust but even a blind pig can find an acorn every now and again.
One doesn’t want to lean too heavily on human tragedies to make political points, but since a lot of our politics rightly concerns itself with how to minimize the occurrence of tragic events, it is necessary to try to see what can be learned. And to that end, it seems worth taking note of the fact that the weekend’s bombing and massacre in Norway should remind us once again that “safe havens” in Pakistan and Afghanistan are neither necessary nor sufficient to undertake mass casualty attacks in the west. Indeed, the one thing you can say for sure about a wood-be killer located in Afghanistan is that he’s not in a western country and thus has no ability to mount a major attack in the west. Any “safe haven” abroad is, by definition, too far away to open fire on a summer camp.
An excellent point that I wish the buttinskys in Washington would be reminded of periodically, preferably by tatooing it on their foreheads so that they would see it in the mirror every morning.
The Chattering Classes are fond of castigating Republicans for this sort of intrusivity, conveniently forgetting Democrat-instigated adventures like Vietnam and Korea — from which subsequent Republican administrations had to extract us, albeit incompetently — but Democrats are congenitally incapable of leaving people alone, whether at home or abroad, so it is no surprise that the Obamanation (vacuous campaign rhetoric to the contrary notwithstanding) has turned out to be the third term of G.W. Bush when it comes to foreign policy.
Disappointingly, Yglesias goes off the rails soon enough:
This also shows us — as did the plotting of the 9/11 attacks themselves by a cell in Hamburg — that generalized establishment of good governance is not sufficient to foil terrorist attacks. Germany and Norway are among the best-governed countries on earth. We would be lucky if the United States were to achieve the level of orderliness efficient administration that they have. It’s simply not going to happen for Pakistan or Afghanistan in this lifetime. But at the same time, conventional law enforcement does have a pretty good track record of busting up plots. There’s no perfect security, but these things are hard to get away with. But precisely the problem we don’t have is the need to establish rough military control over large swathes of far-away foreign countries. This is both extremely difficult to pull off and largely unrelated to domestic security goals.
This is arrant nonsense, founded on Yglesias’s corrupt misapprehension of what constitutes ‘good governance’. Opening the borders to a flood of foreigners — chiefly from countries dominated by an expansionist ideology masquerading as a religion — because you aren’t producing enough kids to keep the geezers in the clover that the welfare state promised them, and then being unwilling to take the necessary steps to squelch the behavioral sink that inevitably results, is not any rational (i.e. non-’progressive’) person’s idea of ‘good governance.
In Britain, France, Germany, Sweden, and Norway, there are steadily expanding areas where Muslims are establishing their own mini-states, in which Jews and other kufr go only at their peril. The atrocity in Norway wasn’t aimed at Muslims but at the intellectual heirs of Vidkun Quisling (a Norwegian, note) who are by their pusillanimity allowing that corrosion, when they aren’t supporting it through ‘social benefits’ paid for by the existing population. Europe is in a process of slow-motion suicide, and people like Nutcase Anders are taking the only steps that appear available to them. (Funny how there isn’t, this time, that orgy of ‘Why do they hate us?’ soul-searching that always dominates the commentariat after every Mulsim atrocity.)