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1NC (1-off)

Its not the destination that matters, but the journey. Its not about where you go, but how you got there. One day we reach our goal, and now point with pride to the long travels we undertook to reach it. IN fact, we were not even aware of traveling. But we got so far because we fancied at every point that we were at home. And it is only at the end that we realize the entire time we should have been singing. That the entire time we were traveling we should have been dancing. I remember driving through New Vegas, staring out the windows of the truck as we bumped down a dusty desert road. Vast expanses of nothingness surrounded me, cracked earth and red mesas blurred into a single waking dream. I could never really tell the exact moment when I fell asleep: when reality stopped being real, when rationality got turned off and the sky started to change colors. When the desert turned into oceans turned into people turned into laptop backlights turned into kaleidoscopic visions. I blink my eyes and the world clicks:
Click. Now Im on the deck of the Titanic. Click. Now Im the president, addressing the people. Click.

Now Im in a debate round on cross x. A voice whispers into my ear:this life which you dream must be lived by you once again and innumerable times more!1 It seems every time I wake from a dream I find myself in another nightmare; always waking up, never awakening. I open my mouth but the only words I can find on my tongue are already gone, a figment of a previous dream. Only a poem comes to my tongue, a poem that isnt mine, a poem I dreamt long ago if you were a gasping
New Mexican wasteland I would learn how to irrigate, and Id dig it

all myself
Id dig it with my fingernails until they fell

off and then Id use them as little shovels, Id drain lake after river after ocean to bring life to you and when it was all said and done, when I was finally satisfied by your satisfaction,

1 Friedrich Nietzsche, Demon parable

youd remind me how without thirst, there would be no pleasure in drinking. youd remind me of all of the animals and plants and earthly cycles that have been ruined by my actions. you would remind me of how a life full of thirst might be more meaningful than a life full of drinking.2

In memoriam: deserts.

Hello: my name is debate, and Im depressed. I feel so bogged down by responsibilities as if I HAVE to act a certain way. Im not really sure why it has to be me, you know? I just want to have fun, I want to be free, but it seems like everyone is always breathing down my neck. You have to grow up to be a well respected man about town, you have to be important! You have to be tidy and proper! Be predictable, people will like you more. I think in the end it is all the same, just more and more responsibility thrown in my face. More and more things everyone tells me to do or say or be: they always tell me to drink, never be thirsty the say. They treat me like a wasteland: an emptiness, a void to be filled, a blank sheet to be drawn on. Welcome to New Vegas: hear me gasp. I see rounds every year: debaters pull recycled expando files on the same old shit. This round was Shawnee mission west; you can bet money they read the spending DA. South next round; same old ddev and wipeout blocks. SME MT round 3: the 1nc will be 3 Ts, The PIC, Wipeout, Nietzsche and politics. CCC after that; like I havent heard THAT T Bases twelve thousand times. Millard next round; expect the unexpected. Its the same routine, the same banal bullshit. Even when its wild and unpredictable its always part of the plan. Its all so rational, so calculated, so mechanical and it makes me so goddamn sick. It doesnt matter what happens, even if the plan is horrifying. For instance, if I say that tomorrow a gang banger is going to get shot, or a truck full of soldiers is gonna get blown up, no one panics because its all according to the plan.3 Dont trust whistles, nothing absurd: no garden walls. Debate has become a church full of stale air: welcome to the cult of the rational and the Good, the empire aligned against the forces of Evil and the insane. Anyone falling outside our plan: well, fuck em

2 Ego Treadmill, Anna Victoria, Connecticut, published in TeenInk 3 The Joker, The Dark Knight 4 Deleuze and Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus, pg. 158=59, 1980

The judgment of God, the system of the judgment of God, the theological system, is precisely the operation of He who makes an organism, an organization of organs called the organism, because He cannot bear the BwO, because He pursues it and rips it apart so He can be first, and have the organism be first. The BwO howls: Theyve made me an organism! Theyve wrongfully folded me! Theyve stolen my body! The judgment of God uproots it from its immanence and makes it an organism, a signification, a subject. It is the BwO that is stratified. It swings between two poles, the surfaces of stratification into which it is recoiled, on which it submits to the judgment, and the plane of consistency in which it unfurls and opens to experimentation4 I remember my first debate round: the day I learned the rules. Ive been told to conform, told to become something Im not, a form I dont belong in, a body thats not mine. Little Gods are birthed on all sides: the ballot, the judge, the preference sheet. Dont want to read the K in front of that guy. Dont say fuck in front of her, shell knock your speaker points. Little body-snatchers throw me into alien forms. Little words instill death in me. I have been ordered, controlled, cataloged and filed like a footnote: footnote 233, they call me. "It's not up to you," said Kronman. "The discourse makes of you something. It makes of you something juridical. In your case, we just call it 233 for short." "For short?" I saw a glimmer of hope. 233 was merely a mnemonic device. "Then I don't really have to become 233?" I asked with renewed hope. "It's just a name, an address, a handle?" "You're not paying attention. We call you 233 for short. But once the work is finished, that's all you are: You are "233 for short.' You don't exist except in the mode of being-for-short. Think of it in Heideggerian terms. Not so much being-there. But rather being-for-short. Nothing else is left of you."5 They tell me Ill be-for-short, nothing but a footnote at the bottom of the latest wiki page. Round 5, UT. They tell me: You will be organized, you will be an organism, you will articulate your body otherwise youre just depraved. You will be signifier and signified, interpreter and interpreted otherwise youre just a deviant. You will be a subject, nailed down as one, a subject of the enunciation recoiled into a subject of the statementotherwise youre just a tramp.6

In memoriam: debate.

First national tournament sophomore year: mall of America. Staring at the map which represents material reality, always representing but never being. Never doing, the stupid purple sharpie dot proclaims that I am here: but how can I ever be here if Im standing there. Moreover, how can I be standing there if I am here?
I wander over to a map, desperate to find an exit and a breath of air not laced with pastries, coffee, perfume. He stared at it incredulously. His location was marked with a dot. That wasnt too confusing because the statement You are here, was rather explicit. He was more frightened by the virulent purple sharpie underneath it. It boldly proclaimed in capital letters OR AM I? The question stared at him, bored into his mind. The Pice de rsistance of his cultural encounter did nothing but provide his brain with the mental dynamite to blow up his locked door of cultivated normalcy. He stared around him more bewildered as if the surreal nature of his surroundings suddenly made sense. Sensory input collapsed upon sensory input in a giant blur of constant stimulation. Something that catered to every man-made sultry delight stretched out for him across the glass displays of the mall that made the mythic

markets of civilizations long past, mundane mortuaries. It was city in the truest sense, its artificial existence. 7
5 - Pierre Schlag, Byron White Professor of Law at the University of Colorado, Summer 2004, Buffalo Law Review, 52 Buffalo L. Rev. 851 6 Deleuze and Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus, pg. 158-159, 1980 7 Vincent Li, Mall Story

I am here. Am is an interesting word. How can I be here if I AM here, how can I be if I am? How can I be? <shouted> OR AM I?! <shouted>

In memoriam: the map of the body.

When you will have made him a body without organs, then you will have delivered him from all his automatic reactions and restored him to his true freedom. They you will teach him again to dance wrong side out as in the frenzy of dance halls and this wrong side out will be his real place.8 Wed like to think of ourselves sort of like starfish: not that my stomach comes out, but there are definitely some similarities. We speak of sea monsters, defying time and space. Our politics is of the brittlestarOf special interest is the information that the Brittlestar is a creature without a brain; it is simply a visualising apparatus, a metamorphosing optical system. As Barad forcefully notes, 'there is no res cogitans agonizing about the postulated gap (of Its own making) between itself and res extensa. There is no optics of mediation, no noumena/phenomena distinction, no question of representation' (Barad in press). Instead, the Brittlestar is the model of intraaction, constantly breaking off and regenerating its bodily boundaries as it enfolds bits of its environment within itself and expels parts of its own body into the surrounding environment. In this way, the Brittlestar cannot be said to exist as an autonomous entity positioned inside a spacetime frame of reference, neither that of a Euclidean container nor even that of a dynamical manifold specified by classical science. There is no pre-existent container or manifold within which the creature exists and moves along spacetime co-ordinates while its body is made and remade. Instead, the Brittlestar might be said to undergo what I would call a spatiotemporalisation, what Barad refers to as 'space-time-matter-in the making.9

In memoriam: organisms.

8 Antonin Artaud. 1947. Antonin Artaud: Selected Writings. To Have Done with the Judgment of God: A Radio Play University of California Press Berkeley Los Angeles ISBN 0-520-06443-7 (paperback). Retrieved from: http://ndirty.cute.fi/~karttu/tekstit/artaud.htm. 9 - Dorothea Olkowski Every One A Crowd, Making Room for the Excluded Middle Deleuze and Queer Theory . Edinburgh University Press, 2009, pg. 55-56

We speak of madness, and we speak madness: a language of Evil. You may ask us, What does the world of the critique look like? To that we respond HAVE YOU EVER DONE ACID? The question is self-defeating and without purpose: we are rather like an M.C. Escher piece, paradox stairs and monks traveling up and down at the same time, praying to a trickster-God. Wed rather stay as children forever, playing on beaches and drawing maps with starfish. We return debate in a regurgitated form: digested in the stomach of the brittlestar, in the stomachs of men who know how to leave, to scramble the codes, to cause flows to circulate, to traverse the desert of the body without organs. They overcome a limit, they shatter a wall, the capitalist barrier. And of course they fail to complete the process, they never cease failing to do so. The neurotic impasse again closes - the daddy-mommy of oedipalization, America, the return to the native land - or else the perversion of the exotic territorialities, then drugs, alcohol - or worse still, an old fascist dream. Never has delirium oscillated more between its two poles. But through the impasses and the triangles a schizophrenic flow moves, irresistibly; sperm, river, drainage, inflamed genital mucus, or a stream of words that do not let themselves be coded, a libido that is too fluid, too viscous: a violence against syntax, a concerted destruction of the signifier, nonsense erected as a flow, polyvocality that returns to haunt all relations.10

In memoriam: the political.

<SHOUT>In summary!</SHOUT> How much do you make in that death factory Severance owed in the chamber of revolvers Empty jails fall from my scalp Shake the globe and let me out If still I can remember the day That they took you from me Seems like I've been running from your trenchant memory Harp sickle will warn me when it's over 'Cuz if heaven breathes then someone trade places with me

'Cuz I dont want to tear feathers instead of rags When do I get to see the body preserved inside this grin Sewn in the lips where her last words Ill be damned - I can still hear her laughing Your angels have tangled their brass again The comfort of doubt still it keeps you thin And still I can remember the day
10 - Deleuze and Guattari, Anti-Oedipus, pg. 132-134

That they took you from me Seems like I've been running from your trenchant memory Harp sickle will warn me when it's over Does your temperature ache Is your glass about to break Are you purple with current Will you now become the servant Gordian knots in the power lines Saucer fills to empty with pesticide Like the pharaohs of old Bury me in gold I'll make your son refuse to fight in the stalk home setting that we provide If your heart does cease to speak My fingernail choir will make your chalkboard sing11 We knew this day was coming, we prepared the eulogy:

In memoriam: sanity.

But lets get back to this dead-end point between Leibniz and Spinoza, to their inability to imagine a politics of the empty sign and Cartesian coordinate, one day becoming revolutionarywhat Im calling the conjunction of deterritorialization processes. I think its impossible to sustain the sole promotion of the power sign for very long in the exclusive work of reality* unless you topple over into archaization. So you need to come to terms with the absurdity of the figure-signs deterritorializtion in its non-sense efficiency and logic. You need to come to terms with the fact that code surplus value is, ultimately, taken back under the wing of a super revolutionary alliance machine of deterritorialized signs that can double and master the set of all local power processes. To what extent is Spinozas God emptied of its substance? Is

this not just another assemblage of figure-sign flows leading to radical desubstantialization? Permanent desubstantialization. It always has to happen all over again. Isnt the only way to eliminate Absolute Knowledge, the Great Other and all the rest to have codes be invaded by figure-sign cancer? The power sign - the sign-point is continuously deterritorialized, it never stops producing figure-signs, even trashy ones, and being axiomatized, evading signifying chains paired with significations, and all this through a pure logic of non-sense.12

11 Luciforms, Mars Volta 12 Guattari in 1970, The Anti-Oedipus Papers, pg. 262

We know its easy to get lost, but of all things to remember we must not forget ourselves. You are here, here in this room, here in the political, here in space, here in the ocean, here on the beaches, stick in hand, starfish staring into you: tides consuming you. We always have to begin on this beach, with ourselves, with the here: where you are. Artaud puts it well: all writing is so much pig shit - that is to say, any literature that takes itself as an end or sets ends for itself, instead of being a process that "ploughs the crap of being and its language," transports the weak, the aphasiacs, the illiterate. At least spare us sublimation. Every writer is a sellout. The only literature is that which places an explosive device in its package, fabricating a counterfeit currency, causing the superego and its form of expression to explode, as well as the market value of its form of content.13 So come find us: well be out there in the desert, drawing maps in the sand dunes and holding funerals for starfish. Come visit us, we would like to be alone with some company rather than surrounded by ourselves. Dont worry about directions. Feel free to wander out there. It shouldnt be too hard to find us because We are deserts, said Deleuze but populated by tribes, flora and fauna. We pass our time in ordering these tribes, arranging them in other ways, getting rid of some and encouraging others to prosper. And all these clans, all these crowds, do not undermine the desert, which is our very ascesis; on the contrary they inhabit it, they pass through it, over it. In Guattari there has always been a sort of wild rodeo, in part directed against himself. The desert, experimentation on oneself, is our only identity, our single chance for all the combinations which inhabit us. (Deleuze and Parnet, 1977, 11) The individual here is explicitly seen as multiple and political, and the process of subjectification is presented as dynamic and continuing, never as something that has reached or could reach a satisfactory conclusion. For Deleuze and Guattari living is always a process of becoming, never of contemplating an achieved being.14

13 - Deleuze and Guattari, Anti-Oedipus, pg. 132-134 14 Andrew Ballantyne, Tectonic Cultures Research Group at Newcastle University , "Deleuze and Guattari for Architects" 78-79


Contention 1 is Personal Agency

Woke Up Quick, At About Noon Jus' Thought That I Had To Be In Compton Soon I Gotta Get Drunk Before The Day Begins Before My Mother Starts Bitchin About Ma Friends About To Go And Damn Near Went Blind Young Niggaz At The Path Throwin Up Gang Signs Ran In The House, And Grabbed Ma Clip Wit The Mack 10 On The Side Of Ma Hip Bailed Outside And Pointed Ma Weapon Just As I Thought The Fools Kept Steppin Jumped In The Fo' Hit The Juice On Ma Ride I Got Front Back, And Side To Side Then I Let The Alpine Play (Play) Pumpin New Shit By Nwa It Was Gangsta Gangsta At The Top Of The List Then I Played My Own Shit And It Went Somethin' Like This Cruisin Down The Street In My Six-Fo'' Jockin The Bitches, Slappin The Hoes Went To The Park To Get The Scoop Knuckleheads Out There Cold, Shootin Some Hoops A Car Pulls Up, Who Can It Be A Fresh El Camino Rollin Kilo G He Rolled Down His Window And He Started To Say Its All About Makin That G.T.A. [Chorus:] Coz The Boys In The Hood Are Always Hard You Come Talkin That Trash, We'll Pull Ya Card Knowin' Nutin In Life But To Be Legit' Dont Quote Me Boy Coz I Aint Said Shit [Scratches] Yo Man "Get The Fuck Out" [Scratches] Pump That Beat "Muthafucka, Say What" Down On B's Is The Place To Give Me The Pace He Said Ma Man J.D. Is On Freebase The Boy J.D. Was A Friend Of Mine 'till I Caught Him In My Car Tryin To Steal The Alpine Chased Him Down The Street To Call A Truce The Silly Muthafucka Pulls Out A Deuce Deuce Little Did He Know I Had A Loaded 12 Guage One Sucker Dead, L.A. Times Front Page [Chorus:]

Coz The Boys In The Hood Are Always Hard You Come Talkin That Trash, Well Pull Ya Card Knowin' Nutin In Life But To Be Legit' Dont Quote Me Boy Coz I Aint Said Shit [Scratches] "Yo Leroy" [Scratches] "Beer Drinkin Breath Stinkin Sniffin Glue" Bored As Hell And I Wanna Get Ill So I Went To A Spot Where Ma Homeboys Chill The Fellas Out There Makin Dat Dollar I Pulled Up In Ma 6 Fo' Impala They Greet Me Wit A 40 And I Start Drinkin And From The 8 Ball, My Breath Starts Stinkin Left To Get Ma Girl To Rock That Body Before I Left, I Hit The Bac-Ardi Went To Her House To Get Her Out Of The Pad Dumb Hoe Said Somethin That Made Me Mad She Said Somethin That I Couldnt Believe So I Grabbed The Stupid Bitch By Her Nappy-Ass Weave She Started Talkin Shit, Wouldnt You Know Reached Back Like A Pimp, Slapped The Hoe Her Father Jumped Up And He Started To Shout So I Threw A Right Cross And Knocked His Old-Ass Out [Chorus:] Coz The Boys In The Hood Are Always Hard You Come Talkin That Trash, Well Pull Ya Card Knowin' Nutin In Life But To Be Legit' Dont Quote Me Boy Coz I Aint Said Shit [Scratches] "Who Do U Think You Are Mr. Big Stuff" [Scratches] "Rock This Muthafucka Like The Hard 3 Tha Hard Way" I'm Rollin Hard, Now Under Control Then Wrapped The 6 Fo' Round A Telephone Pole I Looked At Ma Car And I Said "Oh Brother" I'll Throw It In The Gutter And Go Buy Another Walkin Home And I Seen The G Ride Now Cat Is Drivin, Kilo On The Side As They Busted A U, They Got Pulled Over A Undercover Cop In A Dark Green Nova Cat Got Beat For Resistin Arrest He Socked A Pig In The Head For Rippin His Guess Now G Is Caught, For Doin The Crime Fourth Offense On The Boy, He'll Do Some Time [Chorus:]

Coz The Boys In The Hood Are Always Hard You Come Talkin That Trash, Well Pull Ya Card Knowin Nutin In Life But To Be Legit' Dont Quote Me Boy Coz I Aint Said Shit [Scratches] L.A. Playa [Scratches] Big Drum Beater I Went To Get Them Out But There Was No Bail The Fellas Caused A Riot In The County Jail Two Days Later In Municipal Court Kilo G On Trial Cold Cut A Fart Obstruction Of The Court Said The Judge On A Six Year Sentence, Ma Man Didnt Budge Baliff Came Over To Turn Him In Kilo G Looked Up And Gave A Grin He Yelled Out Fire, Then Came Suzie The Bitch Came In With A Sub-Machine Uzi Police Shot The Bitch But They Didnt Hurt Her Both Upstate For Attempted Murder [Chorus:] Coz The Boys In The Hood Are Always Hard You Come Talkin That Trash, Well Pull Ya Card Knowin Nutin In Life But To Be Legit' Dont Quote Me Boy Coz I Aint Said Shit

The status quo is fucked up yo (inherency/harms)

First off say peace to Pine Ridge Shame at all the damage that the white man wine did Ghost Dance, Trail of Tears, 5 million beers a year And all that other crime did More peace to the teachers of blind kids To rebels in small cells keeping their mind big Say everything's hostile Suicide bombers and prosperity gospels, emaciated models With cocaine and blood pouring out their nostrils, they got to Just to stay awake on the catwalk of life where everybody watch you Straight hair, high heels and a handbag Crucifixes, racism and a land grab Katrina, FEMA trailers, human body sandbags A peace sign and a pants sag A money toss cause a 9 stripper mad dash A friend request following the hash tag Now everybody want it like the last laugh A Michael Jackson jacket or a Daft mask Purple Jordans or the mixed girl in your math class Stable is when the Ba'ath had Baghdad But corporate jets really had to have that gas bad War and they hope they all fall from the ratatat Cause that's just more dinosaur for the Cadillac [Hook] Live from the other side what you see A bunch of nonsense on my TV Heaven on Earth is what I need But I feel I'm in Hell every time I breathe Reporting live from the other side what you hear A bunch of nonsense all in my ear Rich man, poor man, we all gotta pay Cause freedom ain't free, especially 'round my way [Verse 2] And we marvel at the state of Ottoman Then turn around and treat Ghana like a garbage can America's a big motherfuckin' garbageman If you ain't know, you're part and parcel of the problem You say no you ain't, and I say yes you is Soon as you find out what planned obsolescence is You say no they didn't, and I say yes they did The definition of unnecessary-ness Manifested Say that we should protest just to get arrested That goes against all my hustling ethics

A bunch of jail niggas say it's highly ineffective Depart from Martin, connect on Malcolm X tip Insert Baldwin to similar the separate To me, the truth is more fulfilling than a meth hit Or finding really fast internet to have some sex with It's all one song short of a set list Couple croissants shy of a continental breakfast Or blowing out your birthday candles just to make a death wish So absurd, word to Chief Bone Necklace Down at the Lakota Sioux Casino A whole culture boiled down to giving you pokeno I go as left as a heart in the chest Cause the Horn of Africa is now starving to death [Hook] [Verse 3] An all white Los Angeles, the dream of Mr. Chandler Hope and pray they take Columbus day up off the calendar South Central an example of God's gifts So shout to all the mothers raising babies in SPA 6 The projects of Oakland city, Detroit ghost towns Monopolies on poverty where D-boy coke bound Its parts of Manila like the video for "Thriller" But the US Embassy is reminiscent of a villa If poverty is chocolate and privilege vanilla Then whats the flavor of the Sunday preachers pedophilia Cash rules everything around these niggas As classrooms everywhere around me wither Hither you can be Mr. Burns or Mr. Smithers The tyrant or the slave but nowhere in the middle Of the extremes of Americas dream Freud fighting Neo, Freddy Krueger refereeing, now

Reject debate for true freedom (solvency)

Everybody knows that they're guilty Everybody knows that they've lied Everybody knows that they're guilty Resting on their conscience eating their inside It's freedom, said it's freedom time now It's freedom, said it's freedom time now Time to get free, oh give us yourselves up now It's freedom, said it's freedom time [First and only verse] Yo, there's a war in the mind, over territory For the dominion Who will dominate the opinion Skisms and isms, keepin' us in forms of religion Conformin' our vision To the world churches decision Trapped in a section Submitted to committee election Moral infection Epidemic lies and deception Insurrection Of the highest possible order Destortin' our tape recorders From hearin' like under water Beyond the borders Fond of sin and disorder Bound by the strategy It's systematic depravity Heavy as gravity Head first in the cavity Without a bottom A faith, worse than Saddam Once got him Drunk of the spirits Truth comes, we can't hear it When you've been, programmed to fear it I had a vision I was fallin' in indecision Apollin', callin' religion Some program on television How can dominant wisdom Be recognized in the system Of Anti-Christ, the majority rules Intelligent fools PhD's in illusion Masters of mass confusion

Bacholors in past illusion Now who you choosin' The head or the tail The bloodshed of male More confidence in the tale Conference is in Yale Discussin' doctrines of Baal Causin' people to fail Keepin' the third in jail His word is nale Everything to the tree Severing all of me from all that I used to be Formless and void Totally paranoid Enjoy darkness as the Lord Keepin' me from the sword Block for mercy Bitter than purgatory Hungry and thirsty For good meat we would eat And still, dined at the table of deceit How incomplete From confrontation to retreat We prolong the true enemys defeat Death to the ascendancy Causin' desperation to get the best of me Punishment 'til there was nothing left of me Realizin' the unescapable death of me No options in the valley of decision The only doctrine, supernatural circumcision Inwardly, only water can purge the heart From words that fiery darts Thrown by the workers of the arts Iniquity, shapen in There're no escapin' when You're whole philosophy is paper thin In vanity The wide road is insanity Could it be all of humanity Picture that Scripture that The origin of a man's heart is black How can we show up for An invisible war Preoccupied with a shadow, makin' love with a whore Achin' in sores Babylon, the great mystery Mother of human history

System of social sorcery Our present condition Needs serious recognition Where there's no repentance there can be no remission And that sentence, more serious than Vietnam The atom bomb is Saddam and Minister Farakkhan What's goin' on, what's the priority to you What authority do we do When the majority hasn't a clue We majored in curses Search the chapters, check the verses Recapture the land Remove the mark from off of our hands So we can stand In agreement with his command Everything else is damned Let them what is understand Everything else is damned, let them with ears understand [Singing Chorus] It's freedom, said it's freedom time now It's freedom, said it's freedom time now It's freedom, I'ma be who I am It's freedom time, said it's freedom time Everybody knows that they've lied Everybody knows that they've perpetrated inside Everybody knows that they're guilty, yes Resting on their conscience eating their insides Get free, be who you're supposed to be Freedom, said it's freedom time now Freedom, said it's freedom time Freedom, freedom time now


No P.C. Obama has zero political capital his efforts can only hurt the chances of passage Wall Street Journal, June 2, 2013, Fred Barnes, executive editor of the Weekly Standard, The
Decline of the Obama Presidency, 6/2/2013, http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324412604578519482313147400.html Now, six months later, the Obama administration is in an unexpected and sharp state of decline. Mr. Obama has little influence on Congress. His presidency has no theme. He pivots nervously from issue to issue. What there is of an Obama agenda consists, at the moment, of leftovers from his first term or proposals that he failed to emphasize in his re-election campaign and thus have practically no chance of passage. Congressional Republicans neither trust nor fear the president. And Democrats on Capitol Hill, to whom Mr. Obama has never been close, have grown leery of him. In the Senate, Democrats complain privately about his interference with the biggest domestic policy matter of 2013, immigration reform. His effect, the senators believe, can only be to weaken the fragile bipartisan coalition for reform and make passage of major legislation more perilous. The Obama breakdown was not caused by the trio of scandalsIRS, Justice
Department, Benghazinow confronting the president. The decline preceded them. It's the result of what Mr. Obama did in his first term, during the campaign and in the two months following his re-election. But the scandals have worsened his plight and made recovery next to impossible. To be clear, the two problems the decline and the scandalsare different matters. The scandals have not been linked directly to the president. They are vexing to the administration, but they are not the source of its current impotence. Instead, Mr. Obama's power and influence have been sapped as a direct result of his own choices and decisions. He also suffers from shortcomings normal to a second term, such as a new, less able team of advisers and cabinet members and the arrogance fed by an impressive re-election. In his first term, when Democrats controlled the House and Senate, Mr. Obama ignored Republicans he didn't need their votes to pass the $800 billion stimulus, the Affordable Care Act (aka ObamaCare) and Dodd-Frank, with its fresh wave of Wall Street regulations. Then, after Republicans captured the House in the 2010 midterm election, his efforts to reach agreements with them proved futile. Why did Mr. Obama fail at compromise? For one thing, he is rarely able to mask his contempt for Republicans, especially those with conservative views. For another, he began to question Republicans' motives, insisting publicly that their paramount goal in Washington is to protect the rich from higher taxes. As a tactic for encouraging compromise, his approach was counterproductive. Robert Merry, the editor of the National Interest magazine and a longtime Washington journalist, recently pinpointed a bigger reason for the impasse after 2010: "It is a deadlock born largely of the president's resolve to push an agenda for which he has no clear national consensus." In other words, Mr. Obama is too liberal to find common ground with Republicans. The spending cuts he offers are illusory, the tax increases specific. Then, after the November election, Mr. Obama spurned conciliation. He upped the ante, calling for higher spending, a new economic stimulus and an increase in the debt limit without congressional approval. Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell laughed out loud when he heard the proposal. Mr. Obama used his last bit of leverage to prevail over Republicans in the fiscal-cliff budget negotiations late last year. With the Bush-era tax cuts due to expire Dec. 31, the president forced Republicans to accept a hefty tax hike on the top 2% of wage earners. His short-term victory has had long-term political consequences. Republicans vowed to oppose new tax increases, which ruled out a "grand bargain" to reduce the deficit and national debt. The exclusion of Republicans from a role in crafting ObamaCare has also backfired. By failing to ensure that the GOP had some influence on the health-care law, the president gave them no reason to support its implementation. With ObamaCare more unpopular than ever, House Republicans voted last month to repeal it. The vote was largely symbolic, but it was telling that two Democrats joined the effort. Short of repeal, Republican elected officials across the country are committed to making the law's implementation, beginning this year, as difficult as possible. Nor is tax reform likely to get anywhere this year or next despite Mr. Obama's support, at least rhetorically, for the idea. He wants to eliminate tax preferences and loopholes so the government can collect more revenue. To win those changes, though, he would need make a bargain with Republicans, offering to cut tax rates, including the top rate on individual income, to generate faster economic growth. That clashes with Mr. Obama's zeal for higher taxes on the well-to-do. Faced with such obstacles, the president could focus instead on his own domestic agendaif he had one. He doesn't. He's paying the price for a re-election campaign that was based on attacking his opponent, Mitt Romney, and not much else. In the president's State of the Union address in February, he endorsed a $9 minimum wage and universal prekindergarten for 4-year-olds, but those proposals lack a popular mandate. If he had campaigned for them last year, they might have better prospects now. More

often than not, presidents focus on foreign policy in their second terms. But Mr. Obama's practice is to downgrade foreign policy in favor of domestic concerns. Where he has sought to restrain foreign governmentsRussia, Iran, North Koreahe has been unsuccessful. His speech in May on national security and the terrorist threat revived an issue from his 2008 campaign, the closing of the terrorist prison at Guantanamo Bay. The chance that will happen is slim. He is also pushing two leftovers from his first year in office, immigration reform and gun control.

What's striking about Mr. Obama's handling of both is his complete absence of influence. On gun control, his speeches had zero impact. On immigration, his influence is entirely negative. He can impede a bill. He cannot aid its passage . All this has left Mr. Obama in a state of weakness. And Democrats are increasingly
blaming him. Doug Sosnik, a former senior adviser in the Clinton White House, wrote in a memo last month that Mr. Obama's re-election "was a great political achievement, but the fact that he didn't set out a clear policy agenda for a second term left him without a clear mandate to govern over a politically divided Congress." Mr. Sosnik, who is now a consultant to the National Basketball Association, added: "There's

not a single member of either party [in Congress] who fears paying a political price for not falling in line with the President, making it even more difficult to get members to cast difficult votes ." Mr. Obama's top
priority now is winning the House in 2014 while retaining control of the Senate. "I'm going to do everything I can to make sure that we've got Nancy Pelosi back in the speakership," he said last week at a Democratic fundraiser in Chicago. In Mr. Obama's case, "everything" is unlikely to be enough.


High Now
Econ High now Reuters June 7, Jason Lange, staff writer, Pickup in hiring points to U.S. economic resilience,
6/7/2013, http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/06/07/us-usa-economy-idUSBRE95607O20130607 Employers stepped up hiring a bit in May in a show of economic resilience that suggests the Federal Reserve could begin to scale back its monetary stimulus later this year. The United States added 175,000 jobs last month after adding only 149,000 in April, the Labor Department said on Friday. The pick up in hiring came despite tax hikes and sweeping budget cuts earlier in the year. The unemployment rate ticked up a tenth of a point to 7.6 percent, which economists called encouraging because more Americans were began to hunt for jobs. "The labor market continues to
trudge forward," said Jim Baird, an investment officer for Plante Moran Financial Advisors in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Low Now
Claims of economic improvement are faulty: the economy is bad Moore, June 7, Heidi, May jobs report gains mask the U.S. economys weak, uneven recovery, The
Guardian, 6/7/2013, http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/jun/07/may-jobs-reporteconomy-recovery And there are reasons why May's job gains themselves are less than totally satisfying. Many of the gains were largely in low-paying retail positions, which the economy has been adding at roughly twice the rate of middle-class jobs. Better-paying sectors like manufacturing are still suffering. Overall, the economy has lost
roughly 8.8 million jobs since 2008; it has replaced less than one quarter of those since. We haven't come anywhere near closing the gap with employment in 2007, before the crisis ravaged the picture. The unemployment rate for women, for instance, declined to 6.5% this month but still towers above the 4.5% it was in 2007, according to the National Women's Law Center. Other measures

of "recovery" prove untrustworthy. The much-ballyhooed increase in household wealth recently was primarily due to rising house prices and only 19% of home sales are to first-time homebuyers; the rest are primarily going to Wall Street. Even if
one chooses to be optimistic about the numbers, Paul Edelstein and Stephanie Karol of IHS Global Insight indicated that the continuing push from austerity will destroy whatever small gains we are likely to make: "The

likelihood that this pace of jobs growth will persist in the face of the spending sequester, however, is unlikely." For these reasons and more, the monthly numbers are misleading, and optimism is often swiftly punished. It's important to look at long-term measures of of the economy's health. Those have not been encouraging at all: the average US household has regained just 45% of the wealth it lost during the recession, according to the St Louis Federal Reserve. "It's not a recovery," wrote Edward Leamer, director of the UCLA Anderson Forecast, this week. "It's not even normal growth. It's bad." That is an ugly reality
check, but it's better than living in a delusion. It's that delusion that allows Congress and CEOs to continue to ignore the problem of joblessness.


Surface Transportation
The need for investment is exaggerated their evidence doesnt take into account recent driving trends Holeywell, May 17, Ryan, Infrastructure Must Reads: U.S. Transportation Policymakers Ignore
Drivings Decline, Governing, 5/17/2013, http://www.governing.com/blogs/fedwatch/govinfrastructure-must-reads-federal-transportaion-policymakers-ignore-decline-driving.html Transportation policymakers are continuing to project big increases in driving, despite evidence that Americans are driving less, according to a new study by U.S. PIRG. In 2007, the total vehicle miles driven in America peaked. That's not a new revelation. But officials at U.S. PIRG say that federal officials haven't recognized the new normal when it comes to driving trends, and aren't considering the fact that the trends that led to a driving boom for the last six decades no longer exist. Those include cheap gas, the growth of suburbia, the entrance of millions of women into the workforce and a quickly expanding labor force due to the baby boom generation. Today, Americans are showing a growing interest in other modes of transportation, and millennials in particular are showing a predilection for living in urban areas where they won't need to drive vast distances to commute. Yet U.S. PIRG officials say federal planning documents continue to predict big increases in driving despite evidence to the contrary. "A lot of DOTs are still [saying] 'what was the average for the last decade -- let's assume that,'" says Phineas
Baxandall, senior policy analyst at U.S. PIRG.

Active Transportation
States like Colorado are already increasing funding for active transportation local decision making solves best Schmitt, April 25, 2013, Angie, In Colorado, a Big Legal Victory for Active Transportation Funding,
DC Streets Blog, 4/25/2013, http://dc.streetsblog.org/2013/04/25/in-colorado-a-big-legal-victory-foractive-transportation-funding/
But thanks to the efforts of a broad coalition in Colorado, the number of states with constitutional restrictions on sustainable transportation spending is about to fall to 21. Governor

John Hickenlooper will sign a bill tomorrow that opens up $250 million a year in state gas tax revenue to walking, biking, and transit projects. Colorado-based transit and environmental advocates found a way to overcome the ban without the monumental effort and expense of a statewide referendum. And theyre eyeing six other states around the Southwest with hopes for a repeat or two.
Colorados constitutional amendment passed in 1935 states that gas tax revenues and vehicle registration fees can only be spent on highways and bridges. To make matters worse, the state had always depended on a narrow reading of the term highways to exclude local roads, sidewalks, and bike infrastructure, as well as transit. Rather than try to overturn the rule, advocates in Colorado simply challenged the way it was being interpreted, said Will Toor, a former mayor of Boulder who helped lead the campaign as director of transportation at the Southwest Energy Efficiency Project. Fifteen years ago, a group of us began making the argument that that was really an inappropriately narrow interpretation, said Toor. There are other places in the constitution that describe railroads as highways of the state. In 2009, a coalition of transit advocates had a small breakthrough. The Colorado legislature wanted to pass a new vehicle registration fee, but lawmakers needed the political support of transit advocates. The transit coalition was able to win a small, but important, fraction of the funding for transit just $15 million out of $1.2 billion. That established the precedent that the legislature had more broadly interpreted the restriction, Toor said. That was the impetus for Colorado Senate Bill 48, which the governor is due to sign tomorrow. Crucially,

transit and environmental advocates framed SB 48 as an issue of local control, not a campaign to boost transit spending, says Toor. When theyve tried to frame it as a transit issue in the past, its been extremely controversial, said Toor. This time, the law simply allows $250 million the share of statewide gas tax revenues that is directed to local communities each year to be spent on transit, biking, and walking. It does not require communities to spend it that way. The message was that the people that best understand the transportation needs are the ones that are the closest, said Toor. Shouldnt they been able to spend these dollars on what they see as their highest and best needs?

China relations

High Now
US China relations high now recent talks AP June 7, 2013, Xi Says World Benefits from US-China Relations, The Associated Press,
http://www.mercurynews.com/breaking-news/ci_23415494/xi-says-world-benefits-from-us-chinarelations Chinese President Xi Jinping (shee jihn-peeng) says he's meeting with President Barack Obama to chart the future of China's relationship with the U.S. Xi says the world has reaped huge benefits from the relationship between the two countries. Speaking through a translator, Xi says the two countries must think creatively and act energetically when it comes to their relationship. He's calling for more exchange on economic stability and international challenges. Xi says he's confident the meeting will inject fresh momentum into the relationship. Xi spoke as Obama welcomed him to a sprawling desert estate in California for two days of talks on high-stakes issues,
including cybersecurity and North Korea's nuclear threats. It's the first meeting between the two leaders since Xi took office in March.

China-US relations are increasing now Xinhua, June 9, 2013, Xi voices confidence in China US cooperation, ECNS,
http://www.ecns.cn/2013/06-09/67863.shtml Chinese President Xi Jinping said in Palm Springs on Saturday that he is fully confident that there is a broad prospect for cooperation between China and the United States. Xi made the remarks when meeting with Californian
Governor Edmund Brown shortly before wrapping up a two-day meetings with his US counterpart Barack Obama. The two presidents met twice and took a walk together over the weekend at Sunnylands, a 200-acre picturesque estate in the Californian city of Rancho Mirage. Xi thanked Brown and other state officials for their hospitality and arrangements in hosting the face-to-face meeting between him and Obama, the first since the two countries completed their latest leadership transitions. Xi told Brown that he

and Obama had in-depth, sincere and candid discussions on bilateral relations as well as international and regional issues of common concern, and reached important consensus. Both sides agreed to build a new type of major country relationship based on mutual respect, mutual benefits with win-win results and laid out a comprehensive blueprint for the future development of bilateral ties, Xi said. Speaking positively of the achievements and efforts made by
Californian state government in promoting cooperation and exchanges with China, Xi said local-level cooperation can consolidate societal basis for China-U.S. relations. Both China and the United States have

been making structural adjustments, maintaining economic growth and increasing employment, which provide numerous opportunities for cooperation, Xi said. China is willing to expand economic cooperation and two-way investment with California and strengthen cooperation
with the state in such fields as clean energy, information technologies, infrastructure construction and culture industries. Brown said it is an honor of California to host the meetings between the Chinese and US presidents. He said the world needs China and the United States to build a new type of major country relationship, which is in the fundamental interests of the two countries and their people. California wants to strengthen cooperation and exchanges with China to make greater contribution to the development of U.S.-China relations, the governor said.

U.S. - China relations stable upcoming talks and cooperation on North Korea and cyber security Gross, June 4, Donald, senior associate at the Pacific Forum of the Center for Strategic and
International Studies (CSIS) and former State Department official, Creating a New Model for U.S.-China Relations at the Obama-Xi Summit, The Huffington Post, 6/4/2013, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/donald-gross/creating-a-new-model-for-_b_3383480.html This week's summit meeting between Chinese President Xi Jinping and President Barack Obama offers a historic opportunity to improve U.S.-China relations - but only if both sides frankly discuss the critical issues now dividing them and lay the basis for an ongoing process of mutual threat reduction. Fortunately, there is one major area where the two leaders have already found common ground and can move the relationship forward - countering the nuclear threat from North Korea. To their credit, Obama administration officials are approaching the summit in a positive frame of mind. National Security Advisor Tom Donilon told President Xi during a late May meeting in Beijing that President Obama is " firmly committed

to building a relationship defined by higher levels of practical cooperation and greater levels of trust, while managing whatever differences and disagreements might arise between us." Secretary of Defense Chuck
Hagel emphasized last Saturday that Washington seeks more transparency in dealing with China on cyberespionage as well as other pressing issues. As he put it, "you have to talk to each other, be direct with each other, be inclusive." President Xi told Donilon in Beijing that the "current China-U.S. relationship is at a critical juncture" where both sides must now "build on past successes and open up new dimensions for the future." He called for the two countries to explore "a new type of great power relationship." Donilon responded to Xi's suggestion by emphasizing that an "essential part of building a new model for relations between great powers is ensuring we have a healthy, stable and reliable military to military relationship." So both

governments are making the right noises and raising expectations that the summit will yield concrete positive results. One mutually beneficial measure has already come out of the pre-summit discussions, as reported by the New York Times - the U.S. and China have agreed on holding regular, high-level talks with the goal of setting "standards of behavior for cybersecurity and commercial espionage."

US-Sino relationship has long term stability: both sides want cooperation Global Times, June 7, 2013, Milestone expected in US-Sino ties, 6/7/2013,
http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/787416.shtml#.UbKW9Zz4IZ0 Chinese President Xi Jinping and his American counterpart Barack Obama are scheduled to meet this afternoon, local time. This meeting has already drawn unprecedented attention around the world. It represents not only a conversation in which both leaders can exchange ideas on important global issues, but also puts forward a glimpse of what China's future might look like when it catches up with the US. China is approaching the US in terms of national
strength. This will also be among the most significant factors that impact international politics in the future. The question of whether the two countries will step out of the box and create a new era of peaceful competition instead of tragic confrontation has become a major test for both countries and even the rest of the world. First,

public opinion in the US, even around the globe, is getting used to China's

rise in power. This inevitable trend, which has been foreseen by many people around the world, is also starting to not be seen by so many Western people as "dreadful." Second, most Western countries are not happy that China is catching up with the US, but they disagree with the idea of following the US to contain China at all costs. Peace is what most people are expecting, so taking the high risk of confronting China goes against their will. Third, the Chinese people are looking forward to China's peaceful rise. Challenging the US or staging a cold war with it is not what they envision. What they are expecting is a long-term Sino-American relationship where peaceful competition and cooperation coexist. The forthcoming years are crucial to this process, which hopefully will lead to irreversible stability . Both Chinese and American leaders have the power to direct the future of world political civilization.
They are carrying the hopes of turning a new leaf in international politics, ending zero-sum games among major powers.

Tension now
Chinas relationship with the U.S. is as sweet and sour as their chicken tensions inevitable USA Today, June 5, 2013, Calum MacLeod, For China, summit with Obama more a meeting of
equals, http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2013/06/05/china-obama-summitcalifornia/2391823/
Over a year ago, then Chinese vice president Xi Jinping visited Washington to defend China's record on human rights, unfair trade practices and aggressive moves against U.S. allies in Asia. Now President Xi Jinping returns to the United States as head of China's Communist party, its army and its state, and there will likely be no apologies for China's actions when Xi meets with President Obama on Friday . The

two nations

share "a sweet and sour relationship," said Sun Zhe, director of the Center for Sino-U.S. Relations at Qinghua University in Beijing. "The sweet, promising part is that both countries really emphasize working together, and that it's a very important relationship" that has survived decades of confrontations, Sun said. On the sour side, both "have some sort of political correctness, feel their way of doing business is correct and use their moral standards to judge the other." Xi Jinping heads a nation fast swelling into superpower status. As its industrial base
keeps expanding, China increasingly looks to buy U.S. companies rather than invite them to operate here, such as its recent $4.7 billion purchase of Smithfield Foods Inc. Its military has become more expansionist, sending ships well into the Pacific to claim as its own hundreds of thousands of square miles of resource rich waters that U.S. friends such as Japan, Taiwan and the Philippines say belong to them. Yet at home, it feels the need to repress segments of society to the point where its censors find it necessary to block out the words "today" and "tomorrow" to stop Internet users from discussing the anniversary of the June 4, 1989, massacre in Tiananmen Square. China's Communist authorities remain scared of their own people and recent history even as they boast of a newly earned global confidence and influence. That attitude is well represented by Xi, 59, who will stop by California on Friday for a two-day "shirt-sleeves" summit with Obama following recent visits to world capitals in Africa, Europe and Latin America. As the leaders of the world's top two economies, Xi and Obama have many issues that divide the nations. But the scheduled six hours of meetings at the Sunnylands desert retreat in Rancho Mirage will probably end up being more about building closer personal ties during meals and walks. Though

the United States has many items on its agenda, China has signaled it has no interest in satisfying them. High on the agenda for the U.S. side will be cybersecurity after several reports of state-sponsored Chinese cyberattacks against U.S. government, commercial and civil organizations. But Beijing denies responsibility and also claims it is the victim of such attacks. China's
top Internet security official Huang Chengqing said he has "mountains of data" about U.S. cyberattacks on China, the China Daily newspaper reported Wednesday. Many analysts expect Xi

to talk in broad terms about two of his major political concepts the "China dream" and the need for a "new type of great power relationship" between the United States and China. "I hope
(Obama) avoids signing on to 'a new type of great power relationship,'" wrote Andrew Nathan, a China expert at Columbia University, on the Asia Society's ChinaFile website. "This

is Chinese code for the U.S. pre-emptively yielding to what China views as its legitimate security interests." Chinese academics says the United States must view the world and China differently to avoid
conflicts. This summit and future ones, "must address this difficult relationship how China can rise peacefully without being very coercive, and only a little aggressive, and how America can accept China as No. 1," said Shen Dingli, an international relations expert at Shanghai's Fudan University. "By visiting America without asking for protocol, Xi shows China wants to stabilize the relationship," he said. "But as

long as

China grows faster than the U.S., the relationship will get worse." When China surpasses U.S. GDP at some point
under Obama's successor, it will be the first time the USA has been eclipsed by another nation in 70 years, Shen said. "China's rise is peaceful, so the USA can't launch a war to stop China's rise, America must accept it." The two presidents' meeting "will be important but not historical, and can quickly be forgotten in three months," he said. The summit has received little attention in everyday China. On China's social media sites, the talk is all about a deadly fire that killed more than 100 poultry farm workers in the latest example of poor workplace safety. Another popular topic is Xi Jinping's fashion-savvy wife Peng Liyuan, a singing star and a first lady of unusually high profile for China. "I heard about the summit on the TV news but it doesn't interest me," said Zhang Wenchang, who runs a painting store in Beijing. "I

don't think meetings can solve disputes. It's interests that matter. China and the USA are competitors and have different views of their interests," he said. "China won't get much from talking with Obama. But there's a lot of mess back home that needs to
be handled."

No War
No chance of US-China conflict too economically dependent Feldman, June 2, Noah, professor of constitutional and international law at Harvard, The Coming
Cool War With China, Bloomberg, 6/2/2013, http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-06-02/thecoming-cool-war-with-china.html
The juxtaposition of rising tensions over cyber-attacks and the pork cooperation perfectly captures the paradoxical state of Chinese-U.S. relations -- and explains why officials on both sides are struggling to come up with a new conceptual framework to understand the change.

Never before has a rising power been so economically interdependent with the nation challenging it. The ties go beyond the U.S.s 25 percent market share for Chinese exports or Chinas holdings of 8 percent of the outstanding U.S. national debt. They include about 200,000 Chinese studying in the U.S. and perhaps 80,000 Americans living and working in China. The combination of geopolitical competition and economic interdependence sets the terms for the struggle that wont be a new Cold War so much as a Cool War. If the Soviet Union and the U.S. avoided all-out conflict because of mutually assured nuclear destruction, the relations between China and the U.S. today could be defined by the threat of mutually assured economic destruction. The economic costs of violent conflict would be incalculably large.

Infr. Investment Key

Chinese investment in US infrastructure is key to US-China relations China Daily, June 7, 2013, Cai Chunying, Top China Expert Wishes Big for Summit, China Daily,
6/7/2013, http://usa.chinadaily.com.cn/epaper/2013-06/07/content_16583636.htm
Longtime China hand Chas Freeman, the principal American interpreter during Nixon's 1972 groundbreaking China visit, has big wishes for the Xi-Obama meeting. "I really think the

framework we are operating within is pretty near the end of its useful life," Freeman told China Daily. "I hope they will have a strategic discussion in which they will talk about the new framework for US-China relations that Mr Xi proposed when he talked about 'a new type of great power relationship'. "We
need to come up with something new to reflect the tremendous interdependence between the two countries economically and the strength that exists between us politically and in the military sphere," he added. Freeman became the deputy chief of mission at the newly-established American embassy in Beijing after China and US normalized relations in 1979. He later served as director of China affairs and then deputy assistant secretary at the US State Department in the 1980s. He is now the chair of the consultancy company Projects International, which facilitates international business ventures. Planning an informal meeting for Xi's first US visit since he became the Chinese president in March is wise, Freeman said. The private meeting will take place in Rancho Mirage at the Sunnylands estate, once owned by the late publishing tycoon Walter Annenberg. "The invitation to Mr Xi reflects the sense that we need to get beyond the often stereotypical exchanges that have occurred in the past, and there really needs to be more time spent between these two very important world leaders than the usual meetings allow. "One of the reasons this meeting is taking place is the sense that Mr Xi is able and willing to discuss things informally," he said. "That's a good way to make progress." Freeman believes China

and the US share much common ground, and the key barrier for them is a lack of mutual trust and confidence. "We need to do things, and we need to think of things, that can provide that kind of trust and confidence," Freeman said. Mutual investment will also be an essential part of the long-term strategic framework of US-China relations, he said. Both sides should "reach an agreement in which China might invest heavily in rebuilding US infrastructure , which will enable China to take its excess holdings of dollars and turn them into concrete profit-producing investment and would help the US recover economically," he said. On looming-large trade issues, Freeman urged the two leaders to "think about pledging not to pursue free trade or
other agreements that would exclude each other".

Deficit Reduction Key

Failure to reduce the U.S. deficit destroys U.S.-China relations Prasad 2012, Eswar, Senior Professor of Trade Policy at Cornell and Researcher Associate at the
National Bureau of Economic Research, holds the New Century Chair in International Economics,
previously head of the Financial Studies Division and the China Division at the IMF, The U.S.-China Economic Relationship: Shifts and Twists in the Balance of Power, Brookings, 2/25/2012, http://www.brookings.edu/testimony/2010/0225_us_china_debt_prasad.aspx
The question remains whether the U.S. is gaining sufficient leverage from its importance to the Chinese economy and its initiatives to give China a more prominent place on the world stage. Indeed, the shifting narratives noted earlier seem to have put the U.S. administration on the defensive in its dealings with China. Here are some steps the Obama administration needs

to take to rebalance this relationship: Get real on deficit reduction. The simple reality is that the U.S. has to summon the political will to decisively tackle
its mammoth budget deficit and rising public debt, which have contributed to its current account deficits and dependence on funds flowing in from the rest of the world. Otherwise, the U.S. will become increasingly vulnerable to external influences. In

the absence of a clear

commitment and a credible plan to bring down the deficit through a combination of revenue increases and expenditure reductions, the U.S. will face a worsening balance of power in its relationship with China.
Be more assertive in this bilateral relationship. My view is that mollification of China on economic and political issues is no longer the right approach. The administrations actionsincluding certain statements by Secretary Geithner and Secretary Clinton during their respective visits to Beijinghave fed into the perception that the U.S. is on the defensive in this bilateral relationship. On human rights issues, in particular, the U.S. cannot be seen to be backing down as a result of economic pressures. Elicit the support of other emerging markets and developing countries in influencing Chinese currency and other economic policies. Rather than focusing on the effects of Chinas currency on the U.S.-China bilateral trade balance, the implications of Chinas currency policy for its own economic stability and those of other emerging markets should be highlighted. Greater currency flexibility could have considerable long-term benefits for China by allowing its monetary policy to become more independent, reducing its dependence on exports and rebalancing its economy towards domestic consumption. This would be good for Chinas growth and would also make a useful contribution to the stability of the international financial system.[10] It would also ease the pressure on other emerging markets that are facing a dire loss of competitiveness relative to China if their currencies appreciate while Chinas doesnt, complicating their macroeconomic policy management. Continue to foster high-level engagements among leaders of the two nations through the Strategic and Economic Dialogue and other avenues. Building up trust at these higher levels will be important to ensure that low-level disputes with minor direct ramifications dont spin out of control as pandering to domestic constituencies could lock the two nations into a cycle of confrontation that escalates disputes to a more damaging level. Setting

the China-U.S. relationship on an even keel is important not just for the principals but also for the broader world economy as the cooperative or conflicted nature of this relationship will set the tone for progress on a number of multilateral issues, including global macroeconomic stability, reform of the international monetary system and tackling climate change.

Russian Relations

High Now US-Russia relations high now: Obama quietly pursuing cooperative measures Mankoff, June 6, Jeffrey, deputy director and fellow with the Center for Strategic and International
Studies Russia and Eurasia Program, US-Russia ties: better than you think, CNN, 6/6/2013, http://globalpublicsquare.blogs.cnn.com/2013/06/06/u-s-russia-ties-better-than-you-think/ Faced with an increasingly complex international environment, President Barack Obama is quietly re-emphasizing one of the main priorities of his first term: trying to build a cooperative relationship with Russia. This may come as a surprise after all, the atmosphere between the two countries has been decidedly frosty the past year. But although the high-profile outreach of the first-term reset may have been set aside, the Obama administration has been pursuing low key, concrete cooperation on issues ranging from Syria to Afghanistan to counter-terrorism. And, freed from the political baggage surrounding the reset, such cooperation is likely to prove more sustainable and more effective
at advancing U.S. interests.
Obamas first term got off to a good start. Washington and Moscow agreed to cut their nuclear forces under the New START agreement, and Russia also provided logistical support for U.S. efforts in Afghanistan. Meanwhile, at the United Nations, Russia supported Iran sanctions and ultimately acquiesced to U.S. requests for intervention in Libya. This cooperation was symbolized by the bright red (but mistranslated) reset button that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton presented to her Russian counterpart in Geneva in 2009. As several of Obamas other first term international initiatives fell by the wayside, the U.S.-Russia reset became one of his highest profile foreign policy achievements. But this made the reset vulnerable when the political winds in Moscow and Washington shifted. Disputed Russian parliamentary elections in December 2011 brought massive protests into the streets of Moscow. Russias presidential transition six months later saw Vladimir Putin replace Dmitry Medvedev, with whom Obama had developed a close working relationship. Not only did Putins previous tenure in the Kremlin coincide with a worsening of U.S.-Russian relations (culminating with the August 2008 war in Georgia), but the returning president now turned to anti-American populism to shore up his tenuous legitimacy. This included unprecedented harassment of new U.S. Ambassador Michael M cFaul, previously the architect of the reset at the White House. Putins new government also cracked down on civil society groups, especially those with ties to the West. USAID was expelled, and NGOs receiving funds from abroad were required under a new law to register as foreign agents. The U.S. Congress, meanwhile, was working to pass a bill imposing visa and financial sanctions on Russian officials implicated in the death of Sergei Magnitsky, a lawyer investigating a tax fraud scheme implicating several high-ranking figures when he was arrested and subsequently died in prison. Though the Obama administration believed that the socalled Magnitsky Act was unwise (and duplicated steps it was already taking), its options were constrained by the bills bipa rtisan support on Capitol Hill and election year politics, including Republican Party nominee Mitt Romneys invocation of Russia as Washingtons number one geopolitical foe. Making matters wor se was the escalating crisis in Syria, where U.S. demands for the departure of President Bashar al-Assad ran headlong into Russian support for a strategic ally and opposition to foreign intervention, despite a mounting humanitarian disaster.

In the

last few weeks, Russias very public expulsion of an American diplomat accused of espionage has contributed further to the perception of crisis in U.S.-Russian relations. Behind the scenes though, Obama has sought to boost cooperation, and early indications are that these efforts are succeeding. He announced the cancellation of phase 4 of the planned U.S. missile defense system in Europe, and limited the application of the Magnitsky law to a small number of fairly minor officials. U.S. National Security Advisor Tom Donilon then traveled to Moscow carrying a letter from Obama to Putin laying out new initiatives for cooperation, including heightened transparency on U.S. missile defense plans, further nuclear reductions, a new communication channel between the U.S. vice president and the Russian prime minister, and the creation of a secure video link for communications between the White House and Kremlin. Putin and Secretary of State John Kerry then agreed to co-sponsor a conference seeking a negotiated end to the bloodshed in Syria. Donilons counterpart Nikolay Patrushev was just in Washington, with a letter from Putin emphasizing the need to
find an agreement on missile defense. This diplomatic activity underscores Obamas recognition that Russian cooperation is necessary on several issues that will shape his legacy. The

Boston Marathon bombing brought a renewed focus on the need for cooperation between intelligence services to counter terrorism. Russian intelligence and logistical cooperation will be
especially critical during and after the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan. While prospects for Syrias future remain very uncertain, U.S.-Russian cooperation represents the only plausible path to a negotiated end to the conflict (despite al-Assads statement implying that he had received advanced S-300 air defense units from Moscow, Putin told European Union leaders this week that Russia had in fact suspended their delivery).

Boston marathon inspires renewed demand for US-Russia cooperation FAS, June 4, Katie Colten, Call to Action: US and Russian Relations, Federation of American
Scientists, 6/4/2013, http://blogs.fas.org/blog/2013/06/call-to-action-u-s-and-russian-relations/ This week, members of a Congressional delegation are visiting Moscow to investigate the background of the Boston Marathon bombing suspects. Two members of the delegation, Republican Congressmen Dana Rohrabacher of California, and Steve King of Iowa, broke from their partys anti- Russia stance and called for closer collaboration with Russian colleagues on matters of intelligence and counterterrorism. Mr. Rohrabacher said, I would say both the Obama administration as well as the Republican administration before Obama that we have allowed

attitudes, maybe the attitudes from the cold war, to remain in place that have prevented a level of cooperation that is justified. FAS applauds Mr. Rohrabacher and Mr. King for their support of increased cooperation between the
United States and Russian officials in matters of international security, and their ability to look past Cold War thinking and work with Russia on issues of mutual concern. It is our hope that the support of Mr. Rohrabacher and Mr. King will encourage members of Congress to reevaluate their position on Russia and U.S. relations, including the reductions of nuclear stockpiles in both countries.

Low Now
US Russian relations are struggling and will not improve soon English News, May 28, 2013, Russian senior diplomat says ties with U.S. not to improve soon,
http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/world/2013-05/28/c_132414943.htm Russia does not expect its relations with the United States to improve dramatically in the near future, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said Tuesday. Speaking in an interview with the Voice of Russia radio, Ryabkov cited the two countries' problems in trade and regional security as well as the recent controversy over adoption. "We know the position of our U.S. partners perfectly, and we present our position thoroughly. We try to find an opportunity to bring these positions closer," Ryabkov said. The current trade volume between the two countries was "ridiculously low," he said, noting that the United States is not among Russia's top five trading partners . In particular, Ryabkov lamented the lack of full-scale negotiations over the missile defense issue. He urged Washington to
withdraw its tactical nuclear weapons from Europe, saying their presence is a strategic threat for Russia. Moscow has been ready to advance its relations with Washington, and contacts between the two sides, including at the top level, have been on the rise, he said. "This is a good sign," Ryabkov said.

Soft Power

High Now
Soft power high Shaq (but seriously dont read this card) Gray May 20, Kevin, Laughing, tweeting and eating: the soft power of Shaquille ONeal, Smart
Planet, May 20, 2013, http://www.smartplanet.com/blog/big-story/laughing-tweeting-and-eating-thesoft-power-of-shaquille-oneal/421
When Amy Jo Martin started Digital Royalty, her social media marketing company, in 2009, she had one goal: take the soft power influence of professional star athletes their unshakable hold on their fans emotions and turn it into hard cash. Over

the past several years, the idea of soft power has gained currency with political theorists. It is a way to describe a nations ability to persuade others to do what it wants without the hard power of force, threats or bribery. It includes culture, trade, diplomacy and engagement. The theory, long associated with the persuasive arts of marketing and
advertising, has likewise gained traction and urgency among the worlds largest consumer brands and their well-paid spokespeople as they navigate the fickle world of social media. Its no longer enough to slap a logo on a Super Bowl ad or to pitch a pair of Nikes in a magazine. Witness Martins first big project: a guy named Shaquille ONeal. When ONeal retired from the NBA in 2011, he announced it in a Twitter-linked video that went viral in minutes. As he plotted his post-career livelihood, inviting 30 brand executives to his Orlando home a month later, ONeal made it clear to the folks from Oreo, TNT and Toys R Us that he didnt plan to just rely on a SportsCenter gig to remain relevant to his fans. Instead, he would talk directly to them, becoming his own soft power media channel. Martin knew the way to do this was through Shaqs massive fan base on Twitter. With 4.3 million followers, Shaq is among the most prolific jocks on the 140-character court. Over the past several years, tweeting a product plug has become a staple of many top athletes endorsement deals, right alongside TV commercials, print ads and trade-show appearances. There is also a growing pay-per-tweet market one-off product shoutouts that can earn a player $20,000 a pop depending on his audience size. Guys like former New England Patriots wide receiver Chad Johnson (4.8 million Twitter followers) pull down a reported $5 million a year doing this. Martin, however, dislikes this model. Youre not engaging with fans, so theres no real influence there, she says. So she encouraged ONeal to build his personal brand by sharing genuine details of his life or his take on the previous nights basketball games directly with his fans. He could then build endorsement deals around that soft power center, which would be stickier. ONeal shoots 15-second videos of himself doing stunts for fans and integrating product pitches into his day-to-day life. I never say, Go buy this on my Twitter, Shaq told me shortly after his retirement. I make people laugh, I inspire people. I have a deal with Oreos. I do a shout-out saying, Im eating Oreos. How many can I eat in 15 seconds? And that makes you laugh, you talk about Oreos and then 10 percent of the 4 million people go buy Oreos. Shaq makes $15 million a year on traditional endorsements, but these blasts earn him an extra $5 million. In the process, he not only cements the brands credibility, he creates a bond with fans and builds his post-career financial longevity. As

the concept of soft power has spread from academia to the boardroom and even to the locker rooms of professional sports it has spawned an innovative generation of business thinkers like Martin and DIY pitchmen like ONeal, whose Web site, with its interactive March Madness polls, its Original SoupMan sweepstakes on Facebook (Win a soup with Shaq!) and its banner ads for his personal designer jewelry collection at Zales, is a study in the nexus of soft power and marketing. ONeals brand, honed over a 19-year NBA career, is one of the best
managed and most authentic in the social media realm. It is never put on autopilot, like a lot of celebrities and athletes, where Tweeting a bunch of pitch-speak is no different than blasting out junk mail. Martin advises brands on this same model. A lot of corporate brands we work with, they have well-known logos, Martin says. With social communication, its important to humanize the experience with an audience no matter who they may be. Humans connect with humans, not with logos.

U.S. soft power high now making progress on multiple global fronts Politico 4/30, General David Petraeus, retired from the Army in 2011 after commanding U.S. and
coalition forces in Iraq and Afghanistan and director of the CIA from September 2011 to November 2012, and Michael OHanlon, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, Fund dont cut US soft power, Politico, April 30, 2013, http://www.politico.com/story/2013/04/david-petraeus-defensediplomacy-soft-power-90781_Page2.html Such an outcome would be bad for our nations security. As each of us has testified on Capitol Hill in past years, Americas ability to protect itself and advance its global interests often depends as much on its softer power as it does on our nations armed forces. For example,
though Latin American countries were themselves primarily responsible for their progress, the headway many of them made in stabilizing their countries in recent years has been a big plus for American security, too and American aid had a role in that progress. That is part of why we have supported a budget deal that would repeal sequestration and achieve most further deficit reduction through savings in entitlement spending with similar increases in revenue generation. Implicit in our approach was the thinking that lawmakers should avoid the temptation to gut foreign aid just because it generally lacks a strong constituency in the United States. Americas

spending on

development and diplomacy and security aid the so-called 150 account has strengthened under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama. That has been a positive and long overdue development. Funds for diplomacy and development
were starved in much of the 1990s. Some of the reductions in that earlier period were warranted, admittedly, as aid then was not always as productive as it might have been. Today, we are arguably doing a good deal better.

Various forms of development assistance and aid have, in fact, produced impressive results on a host of fronts in recent years. The Presidents Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, a major initiative of Presidents Bush and Bill Clinton and now President Obama, has played a significant role in helping to turn the tide against the HIV/AIDS epidemic even if more work remains to be done. Development assistance has also helped more than 600 million people move out of extreme poverty, achieving one of the United Nations Millennium Development Goals several years before the 2015 target date. Moreover, as John Podesta has recently written, in this century alone, aid has helped reduce the global
childhood mortality rate by one-third impressive, even if only halfway toward the U.N. goal for 2015. The maternal mortality rate has been reduced by almost half, as well. And progress

has been seen in other sectors such as agriculture, energy and other realms, including many in the combat zones where each of us spent considerable time in the past decade. America deserves considerable credit for much of this progress, as the U.S. is the worlds largest aid contri butor, at roughly
$30 billion in 2012. The United Kingdom, Germany, France and Japan round out the rest of the top five donors, each providing from $10 billion to $15 billion a year. But relative to our economys size, America does not do more than its fair share; it provides just 0.19 percent of gross domestic product in development aid, similar to Japans level but less than half that of the three big European donors listed above, and less than a third the U.N. goal of 0.7 percent of GDP. Private donations improve our net national position somewhat, but only to an extent. The State Department budget is still less than 5 percent of the militarys and the number of Foreign Service officers worldwide is less than half the number of soldiers in a single Army division.

U.S. soft power high now its now more reliant on U.S. private industry Forbes 2012, Jennie S. Bev, regular columnist to Forbes Indonesia, The Jakarta Post, and Strategic
Review, and an Associate Partner of Fortune PR Indonesia The Power of American Soft Power, May 23, 2012, http://www.forbes.com/sites/85broads/2012/05/23/the-power-of-american-soft-power/ The world was so shocked with the fall of USA, that its gradual rise hasnt yet created a lasting mental image. Good news, American soft power is more powerful than any fiscal policy and political maneuver. Joseph Nye of Harvard University Kennedy
School of Government says soft power refers to the ability to get through attraction rather than coercion or payments. By to get it means to receive favorable treatments based upon attractiveness of a countrys culture, ideals, and policies. For instance, inspired b y TV series about medical doctors, some children in Taiwan aspire to study medicine at an American university. Infatuated by the idea of a fair trial, an Indonesian dissident aspires to become a lawyer. Soft

power can be hardcore power. And the American brand is still the best out there. Also, thanks to low US dollar value, a record 62 million foreign tourists visited USA in 2011. In 2010, some 1.04 million
immigrants applied for permanent residency, following 1.13 million in the previous year, which reflects the worlds insatiable faith in the US brand. The

people of the world still believe that the USA is the place to visit, to reside, and to prosper. US brands, such as automobile giants Buick, GM, and Ford, continue to grow outside of the USA. US brands continue to influence socio-political-economic wellbeing of people of the world: Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube are vital in
demonstrations and social unrests. US brands continue to serve peoples mobility and communication: Apple, Microsoft, CISCO, Oracle, and Boeing. People of the world is a market of seven-billion, and most of them have occasionally consumed black soda drinks called Coca-Cola and Pepsi. The US government has lost its geopolitical epicenter, yet American

brands keep the legend alive. And the shift has occurred from public power to private power, from political power to economic power, from hard power to soft power, with the end of the Cold War as the turning point. The recent approval of the JOBS Act in April 2012 may as well
pick up where the failure of previous policies have left, as its intention is creating an encouraging environment for growth of startup companies through more efficient and lenient procedures of capital raising, including crowdsourcing, venture capitalizing, and angel investing. And it is expected that every new investment would create at least six new jobs.

Low now
Too much debt and economic instability have destroyed U.S. soft power Neu, February 8, C. Richard, senior economist at the RAND Corporation, U.S. Soft Power Abroad is
Losing its Punch, the RAND Corporation, 2/8/2013, http://www.rand.org/blog/2013/02/us-soft-powerabroad-is-losing-its-punch.html This is a small example of what may be a troubling trend: America's fiscal predicament and the seeming inability of its political system to resolve these matters may be taking a toll on the instruments of U.S. soft power and on the country's ability to shape international developments in ways that serve American interests. The most potent instrument of U.S. soft power is probably the simple size of the U.S. economy. As the biggest economy in the world, America has a lot to say about how the world works. But the economics profession is beginning to understand that high levels of public debt can slow economic growth, especially when gross general government debt rises above 85 or 90 percent of GDP.
The United States crossed that threshold in 2009, and the negative effects are probably mostly out in the future. These will come at a bad time. The U.S. share of global economic output has been falling since 1999by nearly 5 percentage points as of 2011. As America's GDP share declined, so did its share of world trade, which may reduce U.S. influence in setting the rules for international trade. And it's not just the debt itself that may be slowing GDP growth. Economists at Stanford and the University of Chicago have demonstrated that uncertainty about economic policyon the rise as a result of political squabbling over U.S. fiscal policytypically foreshadows slower economic growth.

Investors may be growing skittish about U.S. government debt levels and the disordered state of U.S. fiscal policymaking. From the beginning of 2002, when U.S. government debt was at its most recent minimum as a share of GDP, to the
end of 2012, the dollar lost 25 percent of its value, in price-adjusted terms, against a basket of the currencies of major trading partners. This may have been because investors fear that the only way out of the current debt problems will be future inflation. The

dollar has also given up a bit of its dominance as the preferred currency for international reserves among advanced economies. And the renminbi appears to have replaced the dollar as the reference currency for most of East Asia. (The good news is that
in recent years U.S. banks have increased their share of deposits from foreigners, mostly at the expense of banks in London.) More troubling for the future is that private domestic investmentthe fuel for future economic growthshows a strong negative correlation with government debt levels over several business cycles dating back to the late 1950s. Continuing high debt does not bode well in this regard. But perhaps the worst consequences of U.S. debt are actions not taken. U.S.

international leadership has been based, in part, on contributionspolitical and financialto major institutions and initiativesInternational Monetary Fund, World
Bank, General Agreements on Tariffs and Trade (and later World Trade Organization), NATO, North America Free Trade Agreement, the Marshall Plan, and so on. These served U.S. interests and made the world better. But what have we done lately?

The Doha round of trade negotiations has stalled. Ditto efforts at coordinated international action on climate change. Countries of the Arab Spring need rebuilding. Little progress is apparent on the Transpacific Partnership, a proposed new free-trade area. And warnings from the U.S. treasury secretary to his European counterparts about the
dangers of failing to resolve the fiscal crisis in the eurozone met with public rebukes: Get your own house in order before you lecture us. Have

U.S. fiscal problems undermined America's self confidence and external credibility to the extent that it can no longer lead? And what about unmet needs at homehealthcare costs, a foundering public education system, deteriorating
infrastructure, and increasing inequality? A strained fiscal situation that limits resources for action and absorbs so much political energy cannot be helping with any of these matters. But without progress on such things, what becomes of the social cohesion necessary for unified action abroad or the moral authority to lead other nations by example? America's fiscal predicament is serious. The problem has become obvious in the last few years, but it has been building for decades, largely the result of promises of extensive social benefits without a corresponding willingness to pay for them. Putting U.S. government financing on a sustainable path will require painful adjustments over a number of years increased government revenue and painful reductions in government outlays, almost certainly including outlays for defense and international affairs. During the necessary period of fiscal adjustment and constrained government resources, U.S. international influence may decline yet further. But there is no alternative to getting on with the task. The world has not yet found an acceptable substitute for U.S. leadership.

Obama ignores soft power Lagon 2011, Mark, International Relations and Security Chair at Georgetown University's Master of
Science in Foreign Service Program, adjunct senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, and former US Ambassador-at-Large to Combat Trafficking in Persons at the US Department of State, The Value of Values: Soft Power Under Obama, World Affairs, October 2011, http://www.worldaffairsjournal.org/article/value-values-soft-power-under-obama

One irony of the Obama presidency is how much it relies on hard power. The president came into office proposing
a dramatic shift from George W. Bush's perceived unilateralism, and most of his predecessor's hard-edged counterterrorism tactics and massive deployments in wars abroad. Yet after three years, Obama has escalated forces in Afghanistan, embraced the widespread use of unmanned drones to kill terrorists at the risk of civilian casualties, kept Guantnamo open, and killed Osama bin Laden in Pakistan in a thoroughly unilateral fashion. What he hasn't

accomplished to any great degree is what most observers assumed would be the hallmark of his approach to foreign affairsa full assertion of the soft power that makes hard power more
effective. His 2008 campaign centered on a critique of President Bush's overreliance on hard power. Obama suggested he would rehabilitate the damaged image of America created by these excesses and show that the United States was not a cowboy nation. Upon taking office, he made fresh-start statements, such as his June 2009 remarks in Cairo, and embraced political means like dialogue, respectful multilateralism, and the use of new media, suggesting that he felt the soft power to change minds, build legitimacy, and advance interests was the key element missing from the recent US approach to the worldand that he would quickly remedy that defect. Yet President Obama's

conception of soft power has curiously lacked the very quality that has made it most efficacious in the past the values dimension . This may seem odd for a leader who is seen worldwide as an icon of morality, known for the motto the audacity of hope and his deployment of soaring rhetoric. Yet his governance has virtually ignored the values dimension of soft power, which goes beyond the tradecraft of diplomacy and multilateral consultation to aggressively assert the ideals of freedom in practical initiatives. The excision of this values dimension renders soft power a hollow concept. The Obama presidency has regularly avoided asserting meaningful soft power, particularly in its relations with three countriesIran, Russia, and Egyptwhere it might have made a difference
not only for those countries but for American interests as well. His reaction to the challenges these countries have posed to the US suggest that it is

not soft power itself that Obama doubts, but Americas moral standing to project it.

Heg low Obama fails to use soft power, multiple conflicts prove Glassman 5/6, James K, former under secretary of state for public diplomacy and public affairs and
executive director of the George W. Bush Institute, President Obama surprisingly ineffective at using soft power, The Hill, May 6, 2013, http://thehill.com/opinion/op-ed/298077-president-obamasurprisingly-ineffective-at-using-soft-powerSo hows

it working for you? In my view, not particularly well. Look at the last 100 days. The revolt against the Syrian regime has become one of the most brutal repressions in decades. The situation has grown worse, with the almost certain use of chemical weapons crossing what the president drew as a red line. North Korea, developing nuclear weapons and the capacity to deliver them over long distances, has denigrated America and threatened to attack us. And, speaking of nukes and the goal of nuclear nonproliferation Iran remains undeterred as well, with its own red line in doubt. Meanwhile, the United States suffered its first terrorist bombing since 9/11, with three killed and more than 200 wounded an event that occurred eight months after the attack on our consulate in Benghazi, Libya, where a U.S. ambassador was killed for the first time in 33 years. The problem of America being reviled in many parts of the world is vastly overblown, but it has surely not been remedied. Europeans and the Japanese like us more, but they were pretty
fond of us to start with. Muslims, according to the Pew Research Center, like us less. In Pakistan, Egypt, Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon, the average favorability rating for the United States in 2012 was 21 percent; in 2008, it was 26 percent. Foreign policy is not easy. The challenges are unpredictable, which is why the best policy rests on a solid foundation of principle and a clear strategy. The George W. Bush administrations national security strategy was simple: keep America safe and promote freedom. These goals are linked; free nations rarely threaten the United States or their own neighbors. Achieving both these goals requires leadership a consistency that reassures our allies and deters our enemies.

The Obama administration suffered from a common foreign policy disease: a fierce aversion to whatever policies the previous administration adopted. Its strategy has been reactive and timid: pull out, repair alleged damage, lead from behind. Thus, the war of ideas that Bush waged against terrorist ideologies was jettisoned, as was stand-up support for democratic movements
and freedom advocates. It is hard to see the evidence that abandoning these approaches has made the United States more secure or the world less volatile. The good news is that, also within the last 100 days, the United States is starting to lead in one important foreign policy sphere: trade. The administration, in a 180-degree shift, has gotten serious about a free-trade pact with Europe and a separate Pacific agreement that now includes Japan. If it is successful, these trade agreements, affecting countries representing three-fifths of the worlds economic output, could be Obamas greatest legacy. Perhaps

the greatest disappointment is the presidents surprising reluctance to use the tools, not of hard power but of soft especially the aggressive deployment of social media to win foreign policy ends, such
as persuading Iranians to oppose their regimes attempts to develop nuclear weapons or supporting democratic elements in Egypt and other

nations of the Arab spring. The president knows these tools well and deployed them successfully in his domestic political campaigns. There, at least, he has not been reluctant to lead from the front.

The need for soft power is just hype U.S. hard power solves all global problems Kaplan, May 22, Robert D., chief geopolitical analyst at Stratfor, The Virtues Of Hard Power,
Forbes, May 22, 2013, http://www.forbes.com/sites/stratfor/2013/05/22/the-virtues-of-hard-power/ Hard power has not been in vogue since the Iraq War turned badly in about 2004. In foreign policy journals and at elite conferences, the talk for years has been about soft power, the power of persuasion and the need to revitalize the
U.S. State Department as opposed to the Pentagon: didnt you know, its about diplomacy, not military might! Except when it isnt; except when members of this same elite argue for humanitarian intervention in places like Libya and Syria. Then soft power be damned. The

fact is that hard power is supremely necessary in todays world, for reasons having nothing to do with humanitarian
intervention. Indeed, the Harvard professor and former government official, Joseph S. Nye, Jr., who, in 2004, actually coined the term soft power in an eponymous book, has always been subtle enough in his own thinking to realize how relevant hard power remains. As I write, the

two areas of the world that are most important in terms of Americas long-term economic and political interests Asia and Europe are undergoing power shifts. The growth of Chinese air and naval power is
beginning to rearrange the correlation of forces in Asia, while the weakening of the European Union in geopolitical terms because of its ongoing fiscal crisis is providing an opportunity for a new Russian sphere of influence to emerge in Central and Eastern Europe. Of course, both challenges require robust diplomacy on Americas part. But fundamentally

what they really require is a steadfast commitment of American hard power. And the countries in these two most vital regions are not bashful about saying so.
Security officials in countries as diverse as Japan and Poland, Vietnam and Romania desperately hope that all this talk about American soft power overtaking American hard power is merely that talk. For it is American warships and ground forces deployments that matter most to these countries and their officials. Indeed, despite the disappointing conclusions to the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, rarely before has American hard power been so revered in places that actually matter. Asia is the worlds demographic and economic hub, as well as the region where the great sea lines of communication coalesce. And unless China undergoes a profound political and economic upheaval of a degree not yet on the horizon the Middle Kingdom will present the United States with its greatest 21st century competitor. In the face of Chinas military rise, Japan is shedding its quasi-pacifistic orientation and adopting a positive attitude toward military expansion. In a psychological sense, Japan no longer takes the American air and naval presence in Northeast Asia for granted. It actively courts American hard power in the face of a territorial dispute with China over islands in the East China Sea. Japan knows that, ultimately,

it is only

American hard power that can balance against China in the region. For South Korea, too, American hard power is
critical. Though the South Korean military can ably defend itself against North Koreas, again, it is Americas air and naval presence in the region that provides for a favorable balance of power that defends Seoul against Pyongyang and its ally in Beijing. As for Taiwan, its very existence as a state depends on the American militarys Pacific presence. Dont tell officials in the Philippines that American hard power is any less relevant than in previous decades. Like Japan, after years of taking the U.S. Navy and Air Force for granted, Manila is literally desperate for American military support and presence against China, with which it disputes potentially resource-rich islands and geographical features in the South China Sea. Like Japan and South Korea, the Philippines is a formal treaty ally of the United States: that is to say, these countries matter. As for Taiwan, it is arguably one of the finest examples of a functioning democracy in the world beyond the West, as well as geopolitically vital because of its position on the main sea lines of communication. Thus, Taiwan too, matters greatly. Vietnam, for its part, has emerged as a critical de facto ally of the United States. It is the single most important Southeast Asian country preventing Chinas domination of the strategically crucial South China Sea. And what is Vietnam doing? It is refitting Cam Ranh Bay as a deep-water harbor, officially to attract navies from India, Russia and elsewhere; but especially to attract the U.S. Navy. Malaysia plays down its close relationship with the United States, as part of a delicate diplomatic minuet to get along with both China and the Muslim world. Nevertheless, the number of visits of American warships to Malaysian ports has jumped from three annually in 2003 to well over 50. As for Singapore, one of its diplomats told me: We see American hard power as benign. The U.S. Navy defends globalization by protecting the sea lanes, which we, more than any other people, benefit from. To us, there is nothing dark or conspiratorial about the United States and its vast security apparatus. In 1998, the Singaporeans built Changi Naval Base solely to host American nuclear-powered aircraft carriers and submarines. In 2011, there were 150 American warship visits to Singapore. Then there are the four American littoral combat ships that, it was announced in 2011, would be stationed in Singapore. At

the other end of Eurasia, whatever their public comments, diplomats from countries in Central and Eastern Europe are worried about any American shift away from hard power. In the 1990s, the security situation looked
benevolent to them. They were in the process of joining NATO and the European Union, even as Russia was weakened by chaos under Boris Yeltsins undisciplined rule. Following centuries of interminable warfare, they were finally escaping history, in other words. Now NATO and the European Union so vigorous and formidable in the 1990s look fundamentally infirm. Meanwhile, Russia has been, for the moment, revitalized through a combination of natural gas revenues and Vladimir Putins dynamic authoritarianism-lite. Russia once again beckons on the doorstep of Europe, and the Poles, Romanians and others are scared. Forget NATO. With declining defense budgets of almost all European member states, NATO is to be taken less and less seriously. The Poles, Romanians and so on now require unilateral U.S. hard power. For years already, the Poles and Romanians have been participating in U.S. military missions in Afghanistan, Iraq and sub-Saharan Africa. They have been doing so much less because they actually believe in those missions, but in order to prove their mettle as reliable allies of the United States so that the United States military will be there for them in any future hour of need. As and the Gulf countries all desperately

for the Middle East, Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia require U.S. hard power: If not specifically for an attack on Irans nuclear facilities, then

certainly in order to

promote a balance of power unfavorable to Irans regional hegemony. Soft power became a trendy concept in the immediate wake of Americas military overextension in Iraq and Afghanistan. But soft power was properly meant as a critical accompaniment to hard power and as a shift in emphasis away from hard power, not as a replacement for it. Hard power is best employed not when America invades a country with its ground troops but when it daily projects military might over vast swaths of the earth, primarily with air and naval assets, in order to protect U.S. allies, world trade and a liberal maritime order. American hard power, thus, must never go out of fashion.

AT: China challenger

Chinese soft power not strong enough to challenge the US Aming 5/13, Liu, professor at the Institute of International Relations of the Shanghai Academy of
Social Sciences, Growing soft power more than just appeal to Western interest, Global Times, May 13, 2013, http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/781257.shtml#.Ua-rhJz4IZ0 Of course, this doesn't necessarily mean China can turn these resources into persuasive and attractive power. The development of soft power is an accumulating process that is difficult to quantify and track, and is very slow. In some countries and regions which are deeply influenced by Western cultures, political systems and values, China is obviously a latecomer or even considered as a "dissident force." Under such circumstances, it is rather difficult for China to attract Western countries with its own political and cultural charisma, let alone to replace their positions. However, reality provides China with "late-developer" advantages, which can mainly be
drawn from the lesson of the US' soft power decline. China has been trying to integrate with the world through a modest and self-disciplining approach rather than be disregardful and aggressive. Concepts such as equal communication and putting aside minor differences so as to seek common ground, which are lacking in US soft power theories, are exactly the allure of China's soft power. The development of China's power is a sustainable process. Currently, in order to let the world know more about China and eliminate the concerns about the growth of China's hard power, the Chinese government's investment in the country's soft power is vital. The 2008 Beijing Olympic Games showed China's kindness to the world, and reflected China's humane spirit. China's assistance to some underdeveloped African countries adds positive feedback about China's soft power. And this then turns into a favorable international reputation. Although

China's soft power has been growing, there's still a long way to go for it to catch up with that of the US. In the foreseeable future, China has neither the capability to challenge the US nor the intention of doing so. But soft power, after all, is a
kind of power which can also make enemies. The preference for "binary opposition" theory by some Western scholars and their potential awareness of competition and crisis when facing China's rise make them believe that China's soft power is either not attractive or that it is aiming to compete with the US for leading status. Although Nye admits soft power can reach a win-win situation, he obviously is not willing to admit or hasn't realized that some attractive power does exist in the world that's unknown to Americans or Westerners.

China Soft Power High

China soft power high now, and no brink or impact its a slow process that China cant yet translate into real power Aming 5/13, Liu, professor at the Institute of International Relations of the Shanghai Academy of
Social Sciences, Growing soft power more than just appeal to Western interest, Global Times, May 13, 2013, http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/781257.shtml#.Ua-rhJz4IZ0 As a big country with 5,000 years' civilization and culture, China boosts rich soft power resources thanks to its successful development. China's cultural ideals, such as pursuing peace and harmony and stressing tolerance and unity, have been recognized by the world. Aspects of its culture such as martial arts, calligraphy and medicine have been appreciated by people from
across the globe. Meanwhile, systematic renovation can put a country in a position of international leadership, and make it followed by other countries. In recent years, China's

development experience and its vigorous political system have attracted an importance resource of China's influence. Proper and successful diplomacy can also promote a country's international status and its soft power. China has unswervingly followed an independent foreign policy accepted by most countries. It acts unlike the US which imposes its own ideologies on others and resorts to the military to solve disputes. Nye has to admit that this has earned China favor in the developing world, such as in Africa. Of course, this doesn't necessarily mean China can turn these resources into persuasive
research from many countries, and this has become

and attractive power. The development of soft power is an accumulating process that is difficult to quantify and track, and is very slow .

China soft power high education Penna 5/27, Michele, graduate in Communication Studies, masters degree in International Relations
from the Peking University, China: Is education leading Beijings soft power push?, Asian Correspondent, May 27, 2013, http://asiancorrespondent.com/108199/china-is-education-leadingbeijings-soft-power-push/ Aside from opinions on the relevance of this concept, a recent piece of news which has very much stayed under the radar could be telling of how China is becoming more influential in the world. In a soft way, of course. On May 15, Zhejiang University and Imperial College London signed a memorandum of understanding for enhancing their academic collaboration. The two universities are now working on the possibility of co-locating Research and Development facilities in
a new campus in White City, west London, where a new 150 million Research and Translation Hub should be completed in 2015. Last November, the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) provided 35 million for the project. According to Imperial College, the 42,000 square meter hub will provide facilities for 1,000 scientists and engineers and will be able to accommodate 50 or more spin out companies from inception through to maturity. On its website, Imperial noted that in the last 10 years the university has produced more spin out businesses than any other in the UK but has never been been able to accommodate more than 10-15 at any single time, a problem that could be solved with new infrastructure. Speaking with Asian Correspondent, a communication officer at Imperial College said the

launch of the collaboration received a very strong response from potential global partners in business, industry and academia. The full nature of the partnership has yet to be established, but Imperial told us that both partners could have
the potential to benefit from further collaboration in the fields of science, engineering, medicine and business. Council C hairman of Zhejiang University Jin Deshui praised the deal, too, saying that the

partnership will help in developing a new model with mutual-benefit and sustainable-development to carry out an equal and two-way in-depth strategic cooperation. Rosy perspectives for the future of global education? Quite possible. But there is a soft power element in educational cooperation that is not lost on policy makers and analysts. A leaked 2008 cable from the US embassy in Beijing, for example, already noted that, China actively pursues educational exchanges, cultural performances, youth exchanges and other instruments of soft power. Professor Nye himself often argued that education is a chief way to prop up influence. Academic and scientific exchanges played a significant role in enhancing American soft power during the Cold War, he noted in a paper. Political implications are

highlighted by the fact that the Imperial-Zhejiang cooperation is not an isolated case, as Chinese universities are becoming increasingly entangled in global education. Beijings Tsinghua University, for one, boasts 19 joint master
programs with various institutions across the globe and Zhejiang University itself carries on research projects with 16 universities in the United States, Canada, Europe and Japan. Besides, more and more foreign students are set to do at least some studies in China. According to the Institute of International Education, in 2011 some 26,000 Americans studied in the Peoples Republic for academic credit.