September 11, 2012 by Anders Ingemarson
A foreign policy is an extension of the proper role of government to protect us against foreign threats. I’m an advocate of the idea that by far the best foreign policy instrument available to us doesn’t really involve other countries at all. That instrument is leading by example at home.
What do I mean by that? If we turn our focus to protecting individual rights and expanding capitalism, and work towards the total separation of state and the economy, we will send a very strong signal to the rest of the world as they see our policies bearing fruit.
Cutting taxes, regulations and government spending will unleash growth and lead to an increase in wealth all around. You think China’s 10% annual growth is impressive? (assuming you can trust any numbers coming out of a totalitarian regime) I’m convinced we can match that in a heartbeat once we get the reducing government on the right track. Do you think the rest of the world will take notice? Any chance they will start copying our policies? You bet they will. They may initially do it reluctantly, but the power of our example will not go unnoticed among the citizens of other countries. Over time, the pressure will build on their politicians to follow our example as watching us improve makes them realize what they’re missing out on.
Obviously, our military will still be needed to protect us against foreign threats. Are you worried about military expenditures? With 10% growth we’ll be able to increase military spending drastically if needed while still seeing its share of GDP drop over time. But I doubt we’ll see a drastic increase in military spending. Why? Because the countries copying our policies will become freer, will increase the protection of individual rights, and over time will start to see us as friends, as allies, drastically reducing the potential threat of military aggression.
A foreign policy based on leading by example at home, centered on the protection of individual rights, capitalism and the separation of state and the economy is the only way to achieve that elusive goal strived for by so many – world peace.