Welcome! Login | Register
 

Gronkowski “Good to Go” Week 1—Rob Gronkowski told reporters at Gillette Stadium that…

Guest MINDSETTER™ Warren Tolman: Candidate for Attorney General—This race for Attorney General is about leadership.…

Smart Benefits: Two Regs Issued on Contraceptive Coverage—Two regulations on contraceptive coverage were recently issued…

Junior League of Worcester Kicked Off 90th Year With a Move—The Junior League of Worcester (JLW) and its…

Fall Activities for the Whole Family—Mark your calendars for the best activities of…

Worcester Pride to Host First Annual Youth Dance—Worcester Pride will host its first annual youth…

Friday Financial Five - August 29, 2014—The Tax Foundation has put together a helpful…

The Cellar: Late Summer Values—While this week saw some fantastic weather there…

See Flamenco Dancing with Edmy Ortiz at the Worcester PopUp with Your Woo Card—The weekend is fast approaching, and GoLocalWorcester brings…

Newport Manners & Etiquette: Mending Breaches—Do you have to give a wedding present…

 
 

Tom Finneran: Playing Dangerous Defense

Friday, March 14, 2014

 

Should Congress accept the President’s defense proposal, the smiles of our global foes will turn to giddiness, to be soon followed by aggression, believes Tom Finneran.

“Mr. President, this makes no sense. Not now. Not in twenty years. Not in fifty years. It’s reckless. It’s dangerous. And it puts the nation at terrible risk. You are the President of a unique nation. You have a unique responsibility. Don’t do this.”

Such words impart knowledge of the past, fear of the future, and the urgency of now. As such, they are more compelling than the abstract words used in the Constitution which oblige the Congress “to provide for the national defense”. Would that the more fearful and urgent words were uttered in the Oval Office sometime in the last thirty days.

President Obama has proposed a defense budget for the coming year which would shrink our armed forces to levels not seen since the 1930s. For those with some sense of history you will recall that we ranked about 14th in the world at that precarious historical moment. We were a most unserious, unprepared, frivolous nation of about 130 million. The Atlantic and Pacific oceans were our greatest military advantages. Had we been less protected by such mighty waters, world history would have taken a profoundly different direction with ugly, exterminating consequences for untold millions.

The constitutional obligation of providing for the national defense should not, in my opinion, excite or inflame partisan battle. It is the foremost constitutional principle and therefore it should unite Americans rather than divide them. As weary as we might be of Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Egypt, Syria, Iran, Russia, China, and North Korea, weariness is better than enslavement. That roster of regimes bears us a very menacing ill will. Are there Democrats or Republicans who disagree about that? Are there Democrats or Republicans who think that shrinkage of our military capacity is a good thing for world peace?

Peace flows from strength. Civilized nations appreciate the existence of a good cop. Bullies fear a good cop. Americans are not a war-like people. But for Vietnam, the last century showed an emerging America which responded to arms only when provoked. No one wants war—not the generals who strategize, nor the troops who fight, not America’s mothers, nor America’s fathers. But should war come, should we not be prepared?

“You might not be interested in war, but war is interested in you.” So spoke the lunatic Russian revolutionary Trotsky many years ago. Trotsky has bred many violent offspring. They exist all over the world and they fiercely resent America. In the face of such hard cold facts why would we disarm? Has the dreamy “peace” of Woodstock become our nation’s policy? Are we deranged?

America should smile upon all nations, listen to all nations, be reasonable with all nations, and bristle to the teeth with modern armament. Stand solidly with allies and let bullies know that there are limits to our natural patience and forbearance.

Frightful (and helpful) American naval forces should cruise the world’s oceans. Unmatched American air forces should patrol the world’s skies. And Army and Marine forces should drill, drill, drill. There is no better deterrent to war than to show the world a robust capacity to make it. Call it the paradox of peace, but preparation for war gives real peace its best chance. The mad and the ambitious are more likely to test a weakling, less likely to test a warrior.

The recent “lead from behind” drama in Syria was instructive. Britain and France, two of the world’s alleged “great powers”, had to ask us for planes, guns, and ammunition! They are two serious and significant nations who lack the military hardware and capacity to follow through on what they deem critical national matters! My oh my how far the mighty have fallen. Yet the President’s proposed defense budget would mimic the chosen path of Britain and France, severely limiting our ability to protect American interests and allies around the world. China is certainly smiling. Russia too.

Should Congress accept the President’s defense proposal, the smiles of our global foes will turn to giddiness, to be soon followed by aggression. Let’s hope that Congress sees world events more clearly than the President’s advisers. Congress may be understandably reluctant to add to and accelerate the lame duck status of the Administration, but better that than to cripple America’s ability to lead in a volatile world. We are playing dangerous defense.

 

Related Slideshow: New England Communities With the Most Political Clout 2013

The Sunlight Foundation, in conjunction with Azavea, released data maps this week showing political contribution dollars to federal elections dating back to 1990 -- by county.

GoLocal takes a look at the counties in New England that had the highest per-capita contributions in the 2012 election cycle -- and talked with experts about what that meant for those areas in New Engand, as well as the candidates.  

Prev Next

25. Merrimack County, NH

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $9.86

Total contributions: $1,447,713

Merrimack County is named after the Merrimack River and is home to the states capital, Concord. Merrimack County has a total area of 956 square miles and a population of 146,761.

Prev Next

24. Cheshire County, NH

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $9.88

Total contributions: $759,209

Cheshire is one of the five original counties in New Hampshire and was founded in 1771. The highest point in Cheshire County is located at the top of Mount Monadnock, which was made famous by the poets Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau.

Prev Next

23. Rockingham County, NH

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $9.96

Total contributions: $2,965,530

Rockingham has 37 communities and has a population of 297,820. Rockingham County also was home to the famous poet, Robert Frost

Prev Next

22. Belknap County, NH

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $10.02

Total contributions: $604,512

Belknap County is one of the ten counties in New Hampshire and has a population of 60,327. It is located in the center of New Hampshire and the largest city is Laconia.

Prev Next

21. Hampshire County, MA

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $10.41

Total contributions: $1,664,077

Hampshire County has a total area of 545 square miles and is located in the middle of Massachusetts. Hampshire County is also the only county to be surrounded in all directions by other Massachusetts counties.

Prev Next

20. Barnstable County, MA

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $10.90

Total contributions: $2,348,541

Barnstable County was founded in 1685 and has three national protected areas. Cape Cod National Seashore is the most famous protected area within Barnstable County and brings in a high amount of tourists every year.

Prev Next

19. Berkshire County, MA

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $12.49

Total contributions: $1,624,400

Berkshire County is located on the western side of Massachusetts and borders three different neighboring states. Originally the Mahican Native American Tribe inhabited Berkshire County up until the English settlers arrived and bought the land in 1724. 

Prev Next

18. Essex County, MA

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $13.22

Total contributions: $9,991,201

Essex is located in the northeastern part of Massachusetts and contains towns such as Salem, Lynn, and Andover. Essex was founded in 1643 and because of Essex historical background, the whole county has been designated as the Essex National Heritage Area.

Prev Next

17. Chittendon County, VT

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $13.86

Total contributions: $2,196,107

Chittenden has a population of 158,504, making it Vermont’s most populated county. Chittenden’s largest city is Burlington, which has about one third of Vermont’s total population.

Prev Next

16. Lamoille County, VT

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $14.82

Total contributions: $369,854

Lamoille County was founded in 1835 and has a population of 24,958. The county has 464 square miles, of which 461 of them are land.

Prev Next

15. Addison County, VT

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $15.49

Total contributions: $569,299

Located on the west side of Vermont, Addison County has a total area of 808 square miles. Addison's largest town is Middlebury, where the Community College of Vermont and Middlebury College are located.

Prev Next

14. Newport County, RI

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $16.02

Total contributions: $1,214,26

Newport County is one of the five Rhode Island Counties and was founded in 1703. Just like Connecticut, none of Rhode Island counties have an any governmental functions.

Prev Next

13. Cumberland County, ME

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $18.33

Total contributions: $5,205,507

Cumberland County has a population of 283,921 and is Maine’s most populated county. The county was named after the William, Duke of Cumberland, a son of King George II.

Prev Next

12. Windsor County, VT

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $20.57

Total contributions: $1,156,149

Windsor County is the largest county in Vermont and consists of 971 square miles of land and 5 square miles of water.

Prev Next

11. Bristol County, RI

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $20.91

Total contributions: $1,027,472

Bristol County has a population of 49,144 and is the third smallest county in the United States. Bristol County was originally apart of Massachusetts, but was transferred to Rhode Island in 1746.

Prev Next

10. Grafton County, NH

Contributions, per capita, 2012 :$20.95

Total contributions: $1,868,739

With a population of 89,181, Grafton County is the second largest county in New Hampshire. Home of New Hampshire’s only national forest, White Mountain National Forest takes up about half of Grafton’s total area 

Prev Next

9. Carrol County, NH

Contributions, per capita, 2012: 2012: $22.81

Total contributions: $1,012,10

Created in 1840, Carroll County has a population of 47,567. Carroll County was also named after Charles Carroll, the last surviving signer of the United States Declaration of Independence.

Prev Next

8. LItchfield County, CT

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $22.86

Total contributions: $4,286,143

Although it is Connecticut’s largest county, Litchfield has the lowest population density in all of Connecticut. Since 1960 all Connecticut counties have no county government.

Prev Next

7. Middlesex County, MA

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $32.81

Total contributions: $50,432,154

Middlesex County has a population of 1,503,085 and has been ranked as the most populous county in New England.  The county government was abolished in 1997, but the county boundaries still exists for court jurisdictions and other administrative purposes.

Prev Next

6. Nantucket County, MA

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $33.41

Total contributions: $344,021

Nantucket County consists of a couple of small islands and is a major tourist destination in Massachusetts. Normally Nantucket has a population of 10,298, but during the summer months the population can reach up to 50,000.

Prev Next

5. Norfolk County, MA

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $35.87

Total contributions: $24,459,854

Named after a county from England, Norfolk County is the wealthiest county in Massachusetts. As of 2011, Norfolk was ranked the 32nd highest income county in the United States. 

Prev Next

4. Dukes County, MA

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $36.32

Total contributions: $618,960

Consisting of Martha’s Vineyard and the Elizabeth Islands, Dukes County is one of Massachusetts’ top vacation spots. Originally Dukes County was apart New York, however it was transferred to Massachusetts on October 7, 1691.

Prev Next

3. Suffolk County, MA

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $40.73

Total contributions: $30,323,537

Suffolk County has a population of 744,426 and contains Massachusetts’s largest city, Boston. Although Suffolk’s county government was abolished in the late 1900’s, it still remains as a geographic area.

Prev Next

2. Knox County, ME

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $45.89

Total contributions: $1,820,410

Knox County was established on April 1st, 1860 and was named after American Revolutionary War General Henry Knox.  The county has a population of 39,668 and is the home of the Union Fair.

Prev Next

1. Fairfield County, CT

Contributions, per capita, 2012: $55.65.  

Total contributions: $51,970,701 

In a population of 933,835, Fairfield County is the most densely populated county in Connecticut, and contains four of the state's largest cities -- Bridgeport, Stamford, Norwalk and Danbury.

 
 

Related Articles

 

Enjoy this post? Share it with others.

 

You Must be Logged In to Comment