The saying goes, desperate times call for desperate measures.

But David Broder’s column in WaPo yesterday brushes aside all pretenses. Titled “The War Recovery?”, Broder openly suggests that the U.S. ramp up for war as a way out of our economic crisis, and that the Republicans would likely support this:

    The steps that have been ordered so far in Washington have done nothing more than put the brakes on the runaway decline. They have not spurred new growth.
    What else might affect the economy? The answer is obvious, but its implications are frightening. War and peace influence the economy.
    Here is where Obama is likely to prevail. With strong Republican support in Congress for challenging Iran’s ambition to become a nuclear power, he can spend much of 2011 and 2012 orchestrating a showdown with the mullahs. This will help him politically because the opposition party will be urging him on. And as tensions rise and we accelerate preparations for war, the economy will improve.

Nowhere in the article does Broder question the morality of rattling war sabres in the name of economic growth. I am deeply troubled by the ease with which he suggests it, seemingly ignoring that fact that “rising tensions” sometimes leads to actual war, with other people’s children sent off to kill and die in some foreign land. Maybe he doesn’t care. After all, we have to get the economy going, right?

Similarly, nowhere in the article does Broder suggest where we would get the money for this new military buildup. I guess he believes that Keynesian “Stimulus” spending will lift us out of our morass and that China will be happy to lend us more money we can deficit spend to attack Iran, with which China is developing closer economic ties with each passing year:

    Iran was China’s third-biggest supplier of oil last year China is the number one oil and gas importer from Iran. The two countries are bound by energy deals reaching a total value of $120 billion. China signed largest energy deal with Iran ever and promised to block any American attempt to refer IranĀ“s nuclear program to the UN Security Council.

I think it’s safe to conclude that Mr. Broder’s bizarre and dangerous suggestion could easily lead us to a world war. Talk about a jobs program!

Growth in U.S. durable goods shipments, military versus non-military, since 2000:
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