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1) The United States and Saudi Arabia have very different political systems and a very different culture, and that can lead to many misunderstandings. There is no way that will change within the next several generations. International relationships can sour and have soured very quickly many times in history, and it appears that may be happening now between the United States and quite a few other nations.
"Nations have no permanent friends or allies, they only have permanent interests."
- Lord Palmerston, British statesman (1784 - 1865)
My opinion is that the administration in Washington, D.C. is doing an excellent job of messing things up the next several generations. Politicians rarely seem to worry about problems that will arise after their term in office is complete, it takes a statesman to do that. And, it seems that very few statesmen have been elected lately. Who would vote for a statesman? The problem is, a statesman is going to be honest during a campaign, skips the slogans, won't make rosy promises for the future, and the only promise you'll get is that he/she will do the best job possible for the nation's future. But, most of the public is only concerned about right now, so don't expect a statesman in Washington D.C. anytime soon.
"Every nation gets the government it deserves."
- Joseph de Maistre, French Savoyard philosopher, writer, lawyer, and diplomat (1753 -1821)
I tend to think that the United States needs Saudi Arabia much more than Saudi Arabia needs the United States because the United States requires the importation of so much crude oil in order for things to continue normally. There is no shortage of buyers for crude oil, and China's projected demand dwarfs the amount that the United States purchases today. So, Saudi Arabia can easily select another purchaser for their crude oil, if they choose to do so.
If large amounts of crude oil begin to trade hands with another currency or physical gold or possibly other precious metals or items, The US Dollar is likely to lose its status as the world's reserve currency. That would be a disaster for us, as the US Dollar's status as the world's reserve currency is the major reason why the United States can continue deficit spending, seemingly without limit.
2) In my opinion, there are two things that must be done by the United States at an emergency level. One is to mend the rift between the United States and not only Saudi Arabia, but all of the Middle East and the rest of the world for that matter, and the other is for the Federal deficit to be brought under control. Some progress has been made on the deficit, but more needs to be done.
A Federal deficit every year since World War II? That cannot go on forever. At the moment, each man, woman, child that is a citizen of the United States owes $53,868.35. http://www.brillig.com/debt_clock/
And, the median wealth per adult was $38,786 per adult in 2012. Note that children are not included in that figure, as they typically have little or no net wealth. So it's even worse than it looks. http://www.middleclasspoliticaleconomist.com/2013/06/us-median-wealth-only-28th-in-world.html
Where is the money to pay off the Federal deficit going to come from? Oh well, never mind, put it on the credit card, and let your grandchildren worry about it. But in reality, it will be most likely inflated away, with disastrous consequences for all of us. History is full of examples of that.
"Honestly, Ronnie, it took a wheelbarrow full of money to buy a loaf of bread."
- Margaret Holzwarth, my grandmother (1902 - 1993)
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