Seriously, if you were the US government, would you allow one of your boys to be imprisoned in a Third World rat hole?
Take the average American schmoe. To develop each American into a productive citizen, Uncle Sam forks out more than $23,000 to fund his education through to high school. The average American therefore retails for about $23,000 with no extras straight out of the dealership.
On that investment we can expect each American to add at least $30,000 to the US economy per annum over the next 40 to 50 years. Each American is therefore expected to contribute at least $1.2 million dollars to the US economy over his or her life.
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Suffice to say, United States Marine Joseph Scott Pemberton, who has been convicted by a Philippine court for the “murder” of Filipino transgender prostitute Jeffrey Laude (a.k.a. “Jennifer” Laude) is an asset to the American people. On top of that $23,000 investment in primary and secondary education, the American people invested another $20,000 to turn Pemberton into a lean, mean, fighting machine — a fine instrument of warfare trained to kill America’s enemies and bravely take a bullet to preserve liberty and the American way.
We need not go into too much trouble to build a similar financial model to tell us how much (or how little) Laude is worth to the Philippines’ economy and society. But, suffice to say, in economic terms alone, Pemberton is more valuable to the US than Laude is to the Philippines.
It’s nothing personal. This is thinking at the level of national interests. It’s simply how the world works.
Strip out all the niceties of political correctness, the notion that America cares about the quaint laws of a Third World dependent, and the moral high ground taken by our activists at great pretense. What we are seeing today — the whole idea that Pemberton could be imprisoned in the Philippines for killing a transgender prostitute who, by many accounts, could have purposely misled him into believing he was female — is utterly ludicrous.
At stake is the future of a shaky military “alliance” between a powerful former colonial master and a pathetically needy victim of China’s expansionist ambitions. The Philippines is home to 100 million people and a domestic military that cannot fight its way out of a paper bag. Yet it is at the front line in a fight for South China Sea assets that affect not just its impoverished population but an entire region that is only now starting to flex its economic and trading muscle.
That’s the bigger picture — the elephant in the room where “activists” chatter about their quaint beliefs about how the world ought to work.
benign0 is the Webmaster of GetRealPhilippines.com.