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Cheney’s 1% Doctrine Revisited, or: Why Pat Buchanan Should Choose His Friends More Carefully

According to Ron Suskind, Dick Cheney launched the Global War on Terror via “the one percent doctrine”: “If there’s a 1% chance that Pakistani scientists are helping al-Qaeda build or develop a nuclear weapon, we have to treat it as a certainty in terms of our response. It’s not about our analysis … It’s about our response.” Slapping an arbitrary 1% probability on a nonexistent but scary-sounding threat – why not space aliens, hare krishna terrorists, or giant mutant insects – and spending the rest of our lifetimes throwing trillions of dollars at it, is not a wise use of…