America had her first introduction to the world of Islam one year after signing the Treaty of Paris which ended the war with Britain. It was 1784, and as the new nation desired to expand her trade into the Mediterranean she was forced to deal with the Islamic Barbary Coast of northern Africa. These were little more than a ragbag collection of gangster states whose economies depended upon piracy.
The introduction was not a pleasant one. Islam demanded that America pay tribute for any treaty and a ransom for any Americans taken as hostages. America had no navy to speak of. Her desire for trade exceeded her embarrassment at her military weakness, and tribute was begrudgingly sent. These payments—extortion, to be absolutely precise—grew by 1800 to 20 percent of the young nation’s revenues.
Today twenty percent of federal revenues is around $600 billion. That is exactly what the US pays out each year for imported oil, 60 percent of which comes from OPEC nations. Most of these are Islamic nations, and two of them, Algeria and Libya, occupy the same territory as the old Barbary Coast states.
The legacy of those Barbary states continues today, as we still pay tribute to Islam. You may argue that it is not tribute but merely a business arrangement. Islam has oil, we need oil, and so on. But much of the world’s price and production is not set by market forces but by a group of turbaned gentlemen who control the OPEC cartel. They have the same influence over the world oil market that Al Capone had over the Cicero, Illinois prostitution market. Both of these commodities are what economists call ‘relatively inelastic.’ This fancy phrase means that customers will pay higher and higher prices for them while only decreasing their consumption a little if at all.
And that is exactly where we stand today regarding our need for oil. Yes, oil is a need. It is common to refer to something called ‘our oil addiction’ but it is an addiction in the same way that food is. We need to eat. Our economy needs oil. It is really no simpler than that. There are those who would like to decrease our oil needs, but such a wish is mere fantasy. Even if the US somehow decreased her oil needs 10 percent the growing economies of India and China would still demand more oil. The price would remain high.
And consider this: The price of oil would be much higher if the US did not use her military to keep the Persian Gulf relatively safe. Imagine insurance rates for oil tankers if Iran controlled that seaway. And do not forget that we supply this security to the world oil market free of charge—that is, America pays for this and every other nation becomes a ‘free rider’. These nations get oil subsidized by the US military but then yelp about how ‘US imperialism’ is harming the Middle East.
Really, there is no pleasing some people.
Oddly enough, just as today we arm and supply the militaries of many oil producing Islamic states, we were also in the business of resupplying the naval stores of the Islamic Barbary pirates. We even built and presented to Algeria—then the premier Barbary state—a 36 gun frigate, the Crescent. America was in the ridiculous position of arming Islam, sending tribute to Islam and then seeing these things used to seize American shipping and enslave her sailors.
Such a bizarre calculus is at work today. We send billions of dollars in yearly tribute to Islam, which uses the money to finance terror against us and our allies and build madrassas where millions of Islamic waifs learn the niceties of suicide bombing and Jew hatred, which then leads us to increase our military spending, which puts a further stress upon the American taxpayer which is added to an increase in the price of oil.
This situation is absurd. America cannot call herself a great power if she is in hock to a collection of ragged Islamic states. It becomes embarrassing when we see a US president go on a begging mission to Islamic potentates and lecture them about oil. This picture was taken last week.
It resembles this drawing of an American paying tribute to a Barbary Coast pirate in the early 1800s.
What is the solution to all of this? We could certainly seize Saudi Arabia’s oil fields. Such a thing would be quick and cheap, and would benefit every human being on the planet except for the Barbary pirates themselves. We would even save more money by no longer having to arm that desert kingdom. Such a plan has been floating about Washington since the 1970s. In our current political environment such a thing is impossible. We could drill our own oil or build more refineries or use more coal—we have 500 years of that stuff available right here at home—or build nuclear reactors. How likely is any of this? The Democrats have made their position clear on such plans. All impossible.
Indeed, the Democrats would tax the very industry that provides oil. It does not matter at all that no Democrat in Congress—and no Republican either—-will be affected by the price of oil. These movers and shakers—millionaires all—seldom have to suffer the idiocies they inflict upon the people they pretend to serve.
What then can we expect? More of the same until next year, and then much worse if The Obama becomes commander-in-chief. He will make Carter’s cardigan sweater and malaise speech seem positively tame.
We can’t drive our SUVs and eat as much as we want and keep our homes on 72 degrees at all times … and then just expect that other countries are going to say OK,” Obama said. “That’s not leadership. That’s not going to happen,” he added.
So there it is, as plain as day. We will lose the ability to chose our method of transportation, the type and amount of food we eat, and how we keep the temperature in our homes. And always and everywhere we will seek the permission of foreign nations to keep whatever crumbs of national power they allow us to have.
Needless to say, this is not the future of a great power, but of some middling 3rd world nation like Costa Rica or Senegal. And do we need to ask how much The Obama himself and his wife will be affected by all of this? Do we really think he will lower his quality of life in line with what he has planned for the rest of us?
Not even the most rabid of Barbary pirates could have better planned the dissolution of the United States.
It is as if those nations have used their money to purchase the leaders of the US government. It is as if those nations have ensured that the US government would adopt policies detrimental to America yet beneficial to themselves. It is as if those nations are ready to place in the White House a member of their own faith, a man as obedient to the dictates of the Koran as he is to the whims of Saudi chieftains.