Actually the ESA does collaborate on programs with NASA-US. The ESA lacks the funding for their own manned space programs so they partnered up with NASA on the Orion manned mission project. Their biggest contribution to date is the Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV). The recent ISRO Mars orbiter program included US-NASA advanced radar and imaging subsystems. So cooperation between agencies go both ways and it is usually better for this cooperation to stay quietly in the background to avoid getting caught up in the usual political and foreign policy bullshit which is why the US-Russian space cooperation has run into problems. NASA-US also provides the bulk of the orbital tracking capabilities while also coordinating data collected by other countries that are vital to tracking the various probes flying around the solar system.
I am going to have to go with the lots of Happy pills idea.
If NK was to collapse China would end up having to put up with the aftermath. They already have enough uneducated peasants to sweep under their own rug and are not looking for more. Still, NK antics over the years have done nothing but draw more US military capabilities to the region and give Japan a second reason, China provided the first, to take a second look at their constitution in regards to obtaining offensive weapons. The NK threats about launching missiles at the US resulted in the US strengthening and increasing the budgets for their West Coast and Alaskan based anti-missile systems which coincidently covers anything launched out of China. Not to mention the B-2 flyovers for the SK-US annual military exercises which seem to grow in scope every year. China sent a million soldiers running into the NK-SK war back in the fifties to secure a buffer zone. A buffer zone that might have had some utility back then but today a buffer zone is useless against modern missile systems. The same thing could be said about the Russians trying to reclaim their protectorates to keep a buffer between them and the oh so awesome European militaries. The days of battalions of tanks and millions of ground soldiers invading either Russia or China are long gone. Nuclear weapons spiked those threats since their inception.
Give a real life example of someone prosecuted and convicted of a crime using evidence from data collected without a warrant or using a NSL Add FISA warrants into the mix as well. Although I am sure you know that any evidence collected using a FISA warrant is in admissible and can not be used in court against a defendant. Evidence collected under a FISA warrant are used to collect enough evidence to obtain a regular court warrant. And if so was the issue addressed in a court of law to support the defense? After all you seem to think you know the ends and outs of constitutional law surely you can find one case of a person convicted even though his 4th amendment rights were egregiously violated. And can you be a little less hysterical with your "just break your door down, and shoot you -- and your pets." statement because we are talking about the US not Abbottabad. The government or law enforcement agencies can request all the data they want but if they want to use that data to prosecute someone they will have to defend their methods in court. There are literally thousands of cases of evidence being throw out of court because of a lack of warrants or other violations of the evidentiary practices and statutes.
In this context a legitimate law enforcement reason means a warrant would indeed be needed. Companies are increasingly challenging governmental and law enforcement requests for data in several different venues. Including telecommunication data, data stored in data centers, and video surveillance collected from publicly mounted cameras. Even when the FBI attempted to slap a GPS tracker to a suspects car without a warrant resulted in the evidence collected being thrown out of court. There is a system in place that while hardly perfect it does get things right now and then. However you never hear much fanfare when the system works as designed. All you do hear is a lot of complaining about this or that violating someones constitutional rights but no real life case examples of this actually happening to anyone. There have been a total of two attempted prosecutions under provisions in the Patriot Act which resulted in rulings stating the PA provisions in the case violated the accused constitutional rights. There has been no other attempt by the government to use the PA against anyone since.
It's not about security. It's always been about covering the airlines and government asses. People complain about the security procedures but if someone was able to hijack or blowup a plane the very same complainers would be howling about not having enough security to prevent such an attack. Even before 9/11 airline security was adequate and fairly reasonable. The 9/11 hijackers didn't smuggle guns or explosives onto their target planes. They bluffed using box cutters and threats about having a bomb. If someone was to try the same thing today there would be race by the passengers to see who could get the first punch in.
The rest of the world can go pound sand. The rest of the world both collaborates and undermines the US security agencies depending on their own needs. When China
The Europeans colonized America they just couldn't hang on to it once the early immigrants got settled and a bunch of rich aristocrats decided they didn't want to pay taxes to a king on the other side of the Atlantic. And yes, the European immigrants during the Civil War period did help the North eventually win the war. And for the those who survived the Civil War I very much doubt that they considered themselves Europeans any more.
That's the thing. The US has NEVER been an utopia that somehow reached it's zenith only to start declining. The country was founded by white wealthy land owners taking advantage of the conflicts between England, France, and Spain that were ongoing before, during, and after the US revolutionary war. The US secured it's territory by using naked force against anyone who got in the way. That included the native Americans, Mexicans, France, and of course England. There has not been one single year since it's founding when it was not engaged in some sort of military action in defense of it's interests somewhere in the world. The late 1800's and early 1900's were dominated by a select few with monopolies that dwarf anything seen in recent times and worker rights were non-existent. The 20's saw the great depression. The 40's were dominated by WW2. The 50's saw the Korean war, nuclear war paranoia, and the cold war. The 60's were dominated by racial upheaval and the Vietnam War. The 70's were consumed with a stagnant economy, declining manufacturing, Iranian hostage crisis, and the OPEC boycott. The 80's ushered in Junk Bonds, unrestrained and largely unregulated Wall Street mechanization's, dire warnings of the Japanese dominance surpassing the US, and the Iranian-contra affair. These are just some of the problems the US has faced in it's history. There has never been some golden age when the US was problem free so talks of decline really have no basis in reality.
The US isn't losing it's importance or power. It's just taken 70+ years for all the countries devastated in WW2 to recover from the deep wounds the US was fortunate enough to avoid to it's domestic infrastructure. The world will work better with a little more balance but to achieve that balance the US needs to stop carrying the lions share of the global security responsibilities. The US funding of the UN and NATO is excessive and needs to be scaled back to a more equitable arrangement if not abandoned altogether since neither of those organizations provide any real benefits today. The US has had to put up with a lot of criticism from countries that have benefited from relations with the US but they have not used any of those benefits to help anyone but themselves. Europe has been able to free load on US military security agreements which has allowed them to divert resources to benefit only themselves. Those constantly complaining about US military bases around the world have misinterpreted the reason those bases exist in the first place. They are a another relic of the aftermath of WW2. None of those US military bases are capable of fending off serious attacks against the countries willingly hosting them. The bases primary mission has always been to serve as a trip wire to guarantee Americans will die thus forcing the US to commit enough resources to assist the country being attacked. The soldiers manning those bases serve as human sacrifices to ensure the US will end up helping defend countries that frankly are not worth even the death of 1 US soldier. The US has no true or even capable allies who would ever consider putting their soldiers in harms way to help protect the US in the same way. It's hard enough just to get countries to fulfill their obligations to protect US Embassies. So the US needs to remove those bases and protections they provide and give the world a desperately needed wake up call on the dangers that still exist in the world today so they can continue working on improving their countries without the safety blanket they have taken for granted for so many years. The US is the only country on the planet with the ability to deploy sizable military resources any where in the world if needed and it doesn't need bases on foreign soil to do so if it's only goal is the protection of narrowly defined US interests. The US has closed it's bases every time they have been asked to do so by the host country without exception. (Iraq, Ecuador, and the Philippines are some recent examples) If the world does not want US military bases all they have to do is say so. The sooner they do so the sooner they can get on with strengthening their sovereignty in the real world.
Prove it. Give me your reasons using the historical record for your source of information. Wars are definitely planned but who are the ones doing the planning? Who are the ones initiating the provocations based on the belief that no one will call their bluff.
There has been no definitive proof of US involvement just as there was no proof of US and Israeli culpability for the Stuxnext attack but if they were responsible they certainly owe no one any apologies. In this new incident there is a lot of hysterical rhetoric, conjecture, theories, possibilities, and absolutely no hard evidence. Sounds like an open and shut case. And of course all these security researchers are apolitical angels who would never have any specific agenda to push. The security agencies in Russia and China must be feeling terribly insulted because it is automatically assumed they are too stupid to keep up with the real masters of the electronic universe. But since they always get the benefit of the doubt on every possible action they are accused of it should not surprise anyone.
The international space station would have never got off the ground without the US. And the EU is comprised of independent states that rarely agree on anything of importance let alone anything that has to do with military or basic state security decisions. And it doesn't matter how much money you spend on the military you still need the balls and leadership to actually use whatever arms you are making or buying. Outside of England there is not a single European country the US should feel obligated to assist in the event of war. That basically goes for just about every other country in the world except for Canada and possibly Mexico since they actually border the US and Canada actually takes turns with the US when manning the NORAD facilities. And England has shown the willingness to support the US most of the time ever since the end of WW2 so they can still be considered capable and worthy allies. I cannot think of any other state that even comes close to being a US allie. And moral or political support is meaningless when everyone knows that is all they are offering the US. The international communities have made their disdain for the US very clear so lets grant their wishes and let them take care of things. I am sure they will enjoy and prosper under a Russian and Chinese hegemony. They will soon discovery their vaunted social entitlement states can no longer meet it's domestic obligations and provide a credible defense force at the same time. The human race is no where near abandoning warfare no matter how many people fantasize about it. Until, if ever, that changes any state wanting to preserve it's sovereignty will need military capabilities. Conflict, competition, and territorial ambitions have existed since there were enough cavemen to form up sides and beat each other over the head with clubs and knives to secure better caves, hunting grounds, and women. Almost every human on the planet is descended from the people who fought across Europe, Russia, Persia, China, Japan, India, England, North and South America, the middle east, Africa, and damn near every other place in the world since the dawn of human civilization. That behavior is ingrained in our DNA and all the passionate political and social movements in the world is not going to nullify the basic drive for survival built into the human race when push comes to shove.
That's the paradox. Almost all of our fundamental scientific knowledge was created in someones mind at very little cost. It's the implementation of those concepts that cost a lot of money. And while a lot of people will never admit it the vast majority of technology advancements have come from the money spent on military applications. The multistage rockets that got the US to the moon also provided the technology to develop ICBM's. Nuclear weapon development advanced the underlying understanding on how to reliably harness the power of the atom outside of the laboratory. The atrociously expensive B-2 bomber program resulted in the development and use of electrogravitic technology resulting in the first real life application of technology that can actually manipulate gravity at a very low level. It is by no means anywhere near anti-gravity but it does represent a fundamental first step in understanding how gravity can be manipulated in the future. Lightweight EMP shielding for computer electronics slated for military applications can also be applied to protect sensitive computer components and electronics outside of the atmosphere without the heavy and high density shielding currently being used. The Internet started out life as a DARPA military research project in distributed node computing to protect against an attack from taking down the entire military electronic communications grid in the event of a nuclear attack. The F-35 development program is using computer technology that is years ahead of anything available in the commercial market place. The helmet the pilot wears comes damn close to being able to accept commands directly from the pilots brain to compliment commands interpreted by the HUD using eye movements. The US Navy military laser and rail gun systems utilize revolutionary power storage and delivery systems that could have a big impact in all kinds of commercial technology products. GPS technology was originally a military funded project that is now used for all types of commercial services. The US Air force funded X-37B space plane has displayed remarkable abilities when it comes to mastering orbital navigation capabilities. Although I don't understand why Russia and China have not made a bigger issue of this particular US program. While China and Russia may be trying to improve their AST weapons the US has the ability to destroy, subvert, or even move any satellite they want even in the high orbits were most of the highly sensitive military satellites are deployed. The US Navy is developing the technology to convert sea water into fuel and the ground based military has been developing, testing, and actually deploying solar powered command tents with advanced battery technology on the battlefield to reduce their dependence on fossil fuels. Now I don't want to promote war just to see technology advancements but at least a lot of the money in the bloated military budget does eventually advance civilian technology.
Except the earth does not have an endless supply of things to mine. We are working with finite resources that will be exhausted even faster by the ever growing world population. The newest mining technologies is what has increased the US energy production but even these technologies have some serious consequences if taken to far.