What’s The Point?

The North Koreans launched another missile from her east coast. It is the ninth launch this year. The news says it was a scud missile that went about 300 miles before crashing into the ocean. This is supposed to mean something, so the people who claim to know about these things are consulted to tell us what they mean. In this case, it means that whatever it is the South Koreans are doing is not working. Maybe it means whatever the US is doing is not working. Whatever it is, everyone seems to think it is a big deal

According to Google, North Korea is a little more than 4,000 miles from Hawaii. The coast of the United States, San Francisco to be exact, is 5,500 miles from North Korea. If the Koreans are flying missiles 300 miles into the ocean, they have a long way to go before they are a serious threat to launch nukes against the US. Even assuming these are just tests as proof of concept, it is a huge step from what they are doing now to being able to deliver a nuke from one continent to another.

There may be more to it, but no sane person could think the Koreans are a serious threat to launch a nuke at the US now or in the near future. In fact, they are probably a generation away from being able to deliver a nuke with any degree of stealth and accuracy. Even if they could get one off, the result would be certain death for them. The US would respond with a nuke attack from the air and sea that would eliminate North Korea as an ongoing concern for a few thousand years.

Maybe the North Koreans are suicidal, but there are quicker ways to bring the roof down on themselves. The obvious answer is they are up to something else, something more practical. What that could be is never discussed. The US is willing to give them whatever they want to end their nuke program. The South Koreans would kick in whatever is needed and so would Japan. All the Kim family has to do is name their price and the check is in the mail. Yet, this ridiculous missile dance continues to no obvious purpose.

The other side of this is just as pointless. Trump made a big deal out of cutting a deal with the Chinese to put pressure on the Koreans. He then sent a carrier group to the South China Sea. The point was to let the chubby little dictator know that we mean business. He launched his missiles anyway and nothing happened. At last count, there are three carrier groups in the region, along with some unknown number of ballistic missile submarines, armed with nuclear missiles. That’s a lot of firepower, but nothing changes.

The thing that everyone seems to know, except maybe Trump, is that there is zero chance the US launches an attack on the North. The result of a war on the peninsula would be catastrophic for the South Koreans. There’s a pretty good chance the Japanese would take a lot of damage. Then there is the chance of a conflict with China. No one, including the North Koreans, wants a war. That brings us back to the question, what is the point of all of this? What’s the end game all sides are aiming for?

The answer may be that there is not point to all of it, just a way for all sides to fill up their days, pretending to be leaders of a world that no longer needs leaders. Would the average Japanese notice if his rulers stopped showing up for work? Is the average South Korean concerned in the least about what his rulers are doing? The only reason to care is the prospect that they will do something stupid and set off a pointless war with the North Koreans. Otherwise, the ruling class is a burden, not an asset.

That may explain why the leadership in the West appears to be going mad. Trump was in Europe to meet with the provincial governors and their biggest concern was some new scheme to make Gaia happy.The Western media gets upset at Trump for seeming to question the point of NATO, but when the chief concern of Europe is the weather, a military alliance does seem a bit pointless. Does anyone really think the Russians are going to roll tanks into the heart of Europe? Not even Bill Kristol thinks that’s possible.

Maybe that’s why the Europeans are inviting the Muslim world to invade their cities and create havoc among the native populations. Everyone in charge is bored. They wake up each morning wondering, what’s the point? Being in charge of Germany is rather pointless if you can’t invade the Sudetenland or defend the fatherland against a barbarian invasion from the east. The nations of Europe hardly qualify as countries anymore. All of the important stuff is done by the US or supranational organizations.

In The End of History and the Last Man, Francis Fukuyama argued that the end of the Cold War meant that humanity was moving into the final stage of social and political evolution. The great ideological struggles were over and the world was moving toward a great social democratic super-state. Stuff would still happen and conflicts would arise, but the die was cast. The end point of mankind was a world governed by social democracy and a global administrative state. The world would stop being fun.

Maybe that’s what we’re seeing. The Asian powers are just displaying muscle memory, from a time when being in charge mattered. They go through the motions up to the point when they realize there is no point. The European leaders are doing something similar with the Muslim invasion. It’s Munchausen syndrome by proxy, but the victim is the population of Europe. The ruling class is charged with taking care of their people, but their people are fine, so they are poisoning their people, so rulers have something to do.

59 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Cornelius Rye
Cornelius Rye
3 years ago

I can’t think of anything more frightening than bored foreign policy leaders with too large of budgets. Great article.

fred z
Member
3 years ago

“The US would respond with a nuke attack from the air and sea that would eliminate North Korea as an ongoing concern for a few thousand years.”

I have no confidence that this is true. None. The USA has castrated itself.

Some asshole federal judge would enjoin it, the Democrats would rant, obfuscate, delay and lie, the military is entirely enmoled with leftists.

james wilson
james wilson
3 years ago

Munchausen by politics.

Chiron
Chiron
3 years ago

If the Kim Dynasty wants to survive it needs deterrence against invasions and nukes are the final deterrence, if Saddam really had nukes and a way to deliver them the Iraq war wouldn’t had happened.

It also seems that the Norks don’t trust the Chinese to defend them or maybe they’re making this show because China is backing them up covertly. Which way, I don’t see a 2nd Korean War happening in the near future.

bilejones
Member
Reply to  Chiron
3 years ago

The US has practiced invading the Norks for twenty years, they’d be fools not to develop a deterrence against US aggression.

james wilson
james wilson
3 years ago

It may just be that the show is being put on by Kim for the benefit of Kim. His risk of assassination has to be high, especially if some alliance of Chinese, SoKos, and Amis are making offers to NoKo insiders.

Member
3 years ago

To put the best lipstick on this, it could be as simple as, Trump is Kim’s first “new President”, no? Every new President gets tested by whatever Kim family member is running NKorea at the time. But this time, it’s more serious b/c SKorea just had a major political upheaval. China has a card to play like not before ( Islands and Durerte ) Trump, to me, is taking this opportunity, that he did not anticipate, to deal his deal with China. Trump called China out on market dumping and currency manipulation like no politician in a Presidential campaign. I… Read more »

Joey Junger
Joey Junger
3 years ago

This reminds me quite a bit of George Orwell’s astute essay about Adolf Hitler, and why “that little corporal” (as I think Hindenburg called him) was so popular with some. The general belief (post-rise of the bourgeoisie) is that what people want is comfort. Hitler promised the total opposite pretty explicitly, but there is something in man (or there was) that many times chooses meaning over comfort, or sees no meaning in comfort at least until some rite of passage/trial of fire has been passed through. It should be pointed out that thanks to Hillary and Obama, nuclear-disarmament for “rogue… Read more »

Severian
Reply to  Joey Junger
3 years ago

Orwell’s Hitler essay was brilliant. I think a lot of people voted for Trump for a similar reason — he all but promised to de-pussify America. He hasn’t actually delivered on that yet, alas, but the point stands — the unstated but obvious appeal of the Democratic Party for the last 50 years has been “vote for us, and everything will be nice and calm and kind.” You know, girly. I doubt that’s a problem for the Norks, but it describes the West perfectly (which is why they dig Islam so much).

Drake
Drake
Reply to  Joey Junger
3 years ago

When Hillary floated the idea of taking out Qaddafi, I thought at the time “don’t they have anything better to do?” I think that whole bombing campaign was corporate greed and political boredom. And absolutely zero thoughts on the obvious consequences.

iFrank
iFrank
3 years ago

Kind of a silly essay, I should think. First, politicians are not bored. They are forever scheming ways to gather move power and money. Secondly, NK with a nuke is a big deal. Blackmail and terrorism risk. Selling nuke knowledge. The risk of nuclear weapon use increases with nuclear proliferation.

Teapartydoc
Member
Reply to  iFrank
3 years ago

That last statement doesn’t hold up under what little data we have. The only time nukes have been used in a conflict is when only one country had them, so far. Saying nukes are more likely to be used if there are more of them in more hands is like saying gun violence goes up with the availability of guns. We already know that isn’t true, so how can we assume the opposite for other weapons?

iFrank
iFrank
Reply to  Teapartydoc
3 years ago

Look at things from both extremes. No guns, no gun violence. You and me and Tom, Dick and Harry have a gun, occasional gun violence. Everybody has a gun, more gun violence.

Ron
Ron
Reply to  iFrank
3 years ago

Really? Then explain why states and cities with the least restrictive gun laws have less gun violence than Chicago? You forget that where a honest law abiding citizen owns a gun, there is less likelihood of ANY kind of violence occurring to them. Strength and numbers are the usual base requirements to commit violence, and a gun makes any would be victim more than equal to his adversaries.

iFrank
iFrank
Reply to  Ron
3 years ago

you seem to be looking for argumentation space. what, specifically did i say that you disagree with?

Ron
Ron
Reply to  iFrank
3 years ago

You appear to make the point that removing a specific instrument, guns in this case, resolves violence. Sure, in the most narrowest sense, that would be true, but irreverent because violence would still occur anyway, making it moot to remove guns. Also, it takes guns to remove guns, giving the state a monopoly in practicing gun violence, which didn’t end well for Jews and other folk. Last, firearm availability in the black market and produced by garage mechanics would still make it impossible to make a gun free society. Did prohibition, or the war on drugs work? I

iFrank
iFrank
Reply to  Ron
3 years ago

holy moly. don’t put words in my mouth. i said, inarguably, that the removal of guns would end GUN violence, not ALL violence. this whole argument is getting out of control and ppl are not listening carefully, so with that, i shall bow out.

Teapartydoc
Member
Reply to  iFrank
3 years ago

Everything you’ve said is based on assumptions. Both comments.

bilejones
Member
Reply to  iFrank
3 years ago

Tell that to the Swiss.

Allan
Allan
Reply to  Teapartydoc
3 years ago

Gun violence went up in Chicago with the availability of guns. But it may go down with time as more nonsavages in the city buy guns, keep them handy, and develop a reputation for using them against the usual suspects.

Allan
Allan
Reply to  thezman
3 years ago

What was the probability of nukes (either fission or fusion) being used in 1944?

Well, zero. Zero nukes means zero probability of nukes being used.

As we know from history, the probability of nukes being used increased greatly in the latter half of 1945. Why is that?

A: More nukes means a greater chance of use than when there are no nukes.

Teapartydoc
Member
Reply to  Allan
3 years ago

Non-sequitur. No nukes means no argument whatsoever. And trying to make it so there are none is utopian nonsense to boot. They only go away when they are obsolete, not by design. You guys are repeating the same arguments for disarmament that were used after WWI.

Backwoods Engineer
Reply to  thezman
3 years ago

Precisely. (A nuclear) armed society is a polite society. One more thing, Zman: there is a method whereby NK’s puny missiles could wreak tremendous havoc on the US, even weakening Fed.gov to the point it’s no longer in control of most of the country. One missile, launched off the northern Atlanta coast of the US from a ship, almost exactly straight up, and detonating a uranium fission bomb with the correct casing at 300-400km above south-central Virginia. The resulting Compton effect cascade would cause an EMP large enough to destroy enough critical components of the RFC and SERC power grids… Read more »

Backwoods Engineer
Reply to  Backwoods Engineer
3 years ago

Sorry, stupid phone changed “Atlantic” to “Atlanta”. Only Google knows why.

bilejones
Member
Reply to  iFrank
3 years ago

What sort of planet do you live on?
The biggest nuclear proliferator is the US.

Whitney
Member
3 years ago

I am on board with the boredom issue. I’ve been thinking this for a while. We are programmed for suffering and struggle and life is so easy that we just need to make it hard. I see it all the time with people that have elaborate food routines and vitamin routines and anything they can do to complicate their lives. It’s really fascinating. And their defense, things are getting interesting 🙂

Teapartydoc
Member
3 years ago

Power always seems to end up wanting more power. Why did the ambitious French kings seek absolute monarchy? They already ruled the most prosperous state in Europe, with the happiest people, and the most abundant natural resources. In retrospect we can see that their wars and tight control over everything was ultimately their undoing. With a little wise counsel they could have avoided all that. They did not. I think much of the motivation in that direction is projection. The assumption that others are out to seek your demise or power over you probably drives a lot of bad decisions,… Read more »

Allan
Allan
Reply to  Teapartydoc
3 years ago

teapartydoc, that is an interesting remark about the USA’s state universities. They were established to increase the power of the empire, were they not? Well, whatever the case, you are right that they need to have all of their subsidies canceled and to be privatized or closed. They are not only vast patronage rackets but dungeons for the mind, too. There is, however, a third explanation for the EU’s formation. Leftwing internationalists wanted to prevent another outburst of leftist nationalism like that of the Fascists of Italy and the Hitlerists. The latter groups, both of which are palpably leftist, had… Read more »

Teapartydoc
Member
Reply to  Allan
3 years ago

A good read is Nationalism the Last Stage of Communism by Emil Lengyel. I think the same argument ends up breaking up the EU in the long run.

Ron
Ron
3 years ago

Heh. I applaud every time Kimmie Poo fires off another bottle rocket. He is merely accelerating the crashing of his nation’s already broken economy. Sooner or later, NK will fall apart like the former USSR or Venezuela. China will tire of providing him more fireworks on credit.

originalguest
originalguest
3 years ago

Those test don’t worry me, it’s almost reassuring if that’s all they can muster, as we are not in Kansas anymore, every stem boyscout could do better, given the right tools and material.

Fun fact, mobile phones are bricked at firmware level so they can’t used as a missile brain, the gyro shuts down at certain speeds and stuff like that.

V2+GSM=ICBM

We had carpet bmbing in WW2, China will do carpet droning.

Severian
3 years ago

I think La Rochefoucauld said something about how most of men’s problems can be boiled down to laziness and boredom. [That was how I was reconciling myself to what seemed like an inevitable Hillary presidency — she was too drunk to do much, and so corrupt that she’d mandate open carry, NASCAR attendance, and school prayer if someone paid her enough.] My worry is that Freud (Jung?) was right, and we do have some kind of death instinct — e.g. Europe’s leaders continuing to send men to the trenches for four years, and the men actually going. Are we any… Read more »

Ron
Ron
Reply to  Severian
3 years ago

I agree. The Left’s ideology is incoherent, which explains why they don’t condemn Islam and Sharia law. They just want to burn down the West in a self-destructive pique, even if it means their own self-destruction via the hands of the Islamic radicals they condone and defend.

Member
3 years ago

Reminds me of the movie The mouse that Roared. Tiny country invades the US on the plan of a quick defeat , then foreign aid will arrive.

Maybe, just maybe, the reason those missiles go wayward so quick is because of the United State’s superior stealth technology which scrambles the guidance system on them. (I mean, it’s possible right? Saw it on the SyFy Channel.

What great thinker observed that humanities problems stem from not being able to sit still in a room?

TWS
TWS
Reply to  thezman
3 years ago

Why can we land a rocket on the moon or a plane on an aircraft carrier? Because there’s a man guiding them. They can’t launch a missile but they can fly a plane. A kid flew a plane into red square back when that mattered. A bunch of Arabs flew into the trade center. I imagine norks can fly a bomb about anywhere. It only matters if they will do it or can credibly threaten it.

trackback
3 years ago

[…] What’s The Point? (ZMan, The ZBlog) […]

Ryan
Ryan
3 years ago

Certainly an interesting theory re: Europe and welcoming the Muslim invasion. Although I think the signal high status among the cool kids hypothesis is still a good competitor.

As for the North Koreans, a possible explanation for their ongoing missiles tests is that they’re preparing to deter Chinese led regime change, which is about the only realistic national security threat to the Kim government.

Karl Horst
Karl Horst
3 years ago

I have said for years, that NATO should just fold up their tents, pack them up in their broken down Landrovers and stop playing at being soldiers. The US military is best military in the world, and everyone know it. Everything the Europeans are playing at is just for show anyway. The Brits know they can’t really afford a decent military anymore but pride often gets in the way of such things. The Russians are not going anywhere. And even if they are, it’s back to pick up the old areas on the map they lost along the way. Putin… Read more »

Karl Horst
Karl Horst
Reply to  thezman
3 years ago

It’s really cultural war everywhere in the West, not just here.

bilejones
Member
Reply to  thezman
3 years ago

American involvement in Europe is for the benefit of the American businesses who own the politicians.

JimVonYork
JimVonYork
Reply to  Karl Horst
3 years ago

I agree with the statement concerning getting along with the Germans. I made many friends when I was stationed there, married and divorced and father three kids who still live there. Maneuver Damage was being phased out when I left, more and more training was being done on simulators. The Bunderswehr is a fine fighting force in its own right.

TomA
TomA
3 years ago

One side-effect of the industrial/technological revolutions of the past century is pandemic affluence at lightspeed, e.g. you can now find cell phones and NIke sneakers in fourth world villages that are otherwise destitute. Even the natives of New Guinea (two generations removed from subsistence living in the bush) are now suffering from rampant obesity. What no one will admit is that natural selection is all but extinct, and in the First World, we are actively and doggedly engaged in anti-evolutionary selection and a mad rush to destroy two million years of hard-earned robustness traits. Perhaps slow death by boredom is… Read more »

Karl Horst
Karl Horst
3 years ago

One other comment I would like to make, with regards to Memorial Day. I would like to say “Thank you” to your service men and women who gave so much to sort out the stupidity of our forefathers. Any German who is honest with himself knows this to be true. You probably won’t hear it, and of course we don’t talk about it. But since I visit, and enjoy this forum, let me say it for other like-minded Germans like myself. We may not always agree on here, but that’s what forums are for. Many thanks, and God bless the… Read more »

Member
Reply to  Karl Horst
3 years ago

Thank you, Karl. That means quite a lot to me. My great grandfather and namesake was killed when some stosstruppen mortared the field hospital he was running in March 1918 (he was seconded to Gough’s 5th Army) during the Kaiserschlacht.

Al from da Nort
Al from da Nort
3 years ago

Re the very important discussion about whether nuclear proliferation results in nuclear war: Short answer; Nobody knows. And the results of making a mistake are likely catastrophic. And the historical precedent is that no available weapon goes unused once a conflict gets intense. And there is a good abstract case to be made that such restraint is _immoral_ if you are sending your people in harm’s way against a dangerous enemy.* Hence it would be simply prudent to suppress nuclear proliferation on general principles. However, this was more of a pious wish by our elites than an active policy as… Read more »

Anonymous Lurker
Anonymous Lurker
Reply to  Al from da Nort
3 years ago

In my prior life, I dealt with nukes at the height of the Cold War, and one of my assignments was nuclear wargaming. In a fully generated scenario (every available aircraft and missile armed and on alert, on both sides), tens of thousands of weapons would be used. After seeing the results of such, the notion that some podunk country has a few nukes doesn’t impress me. The best metaphor to describe why I feel that way, is that scene from the movie Crocodile Dundee, when a thug pulls a knife on Dundee and his lady. Dundee looks at the… Read more »

Al from da Nort
Al from da Nort
Reply to  Anonymous Lurker
3 years ago

Yes, but you seem to assume we’d know for certain who did the EMP strike. During the Cold War there would have been no doubt that the USSR was behind it, even if they used cut-outs as was their usual MO. I’m told we spent a lot of back-channel time ‘reassuring’ them on this score. Now that posture would be a counter-productive enticement for a third party to get the big 2 to knock each other out: Last nuclear power standing wins the world_! Fill in the blank, “Why not_!” Our vast and costly Intel Empire’s poor track record in… Read more »

bilejones
Member
Reply to  Al from da Nort
3 years ago

Just how fucking mind-dead do you have to be to believe the USSR was a threat to the US?
Stalin was the “socialism in one country” guy, which is why he killed Trotsky.
The main concern was preventing another invasion from the West.

Al from da Nort
Al from da Nort
Reply to  bilejones
3 years ago

Bile is a good name for you, based on this comment. How wicked and stupid does a person have to be in this day and age to be a Stalin apologist_? Has anyone, anyone killed more people for less purpose on this earth, with the possible exception of Mao Tse Dung, than Stalin. Go home, you’re drunk.

bilejones
Member
Reply to  Al from da Nort
3 years ago

Why do you believe Stalins domestic policies posed a threat to the West?

Drake
Drake
3 years ago

On a related note… I always thought that the states with truly part-time legislators were the best governed. Those states with a brief legislative session once every year or two get things done without getting bored.

Less time for nonsense virtue-signalling, filmed speeches in front of an empty assembly room. and all the usual self-aggrandizing that politicians love so much.

Work the bills on the docket, finish your business, and go home. And don’t expect to be paid enough that this is a full-time job.

txjohn
txjohn
3 years ago

The problem with the unfettered Muslim invasion is, that like rats & roaches, islam will live on crawling over the ruins of the very civilisation it helped destroy…and like it.
Kim and the current crop of childless Western leaders may be doing a kabuki theatre from some long-ago time, but the horde of 7th century tribesmen are quite serious about scuttling over the debris of the theatre.

Rod1963
Rod1963
3 years ago

Maybe they are bored but it still means obliteration for us if we don’t fight back and the system they control. And they are far from infallible. Whites are notorious for playing the short game. Whereas the Muzzies and Asians play the long game. All they have to do is wait for our insane whites to destroy their own power base and then walk in and exterminate the cloud people and their government lackies and the world is theirs. Really who is going to man their military and police forces? A bunch of low IQ Mexicans, blacks and Muslims? That… Read more »

Alzaebo
Alzaebo
3 years ago

Getting dangerously close to the question,
“Why do we need politicians?”
What’s the point?