It's no secret that the foreign policy of the United States tends to reflect the world views of the occupant of the White House.
Sure, there used to be some homage paid to the notion that "politics stops at the water's edge," but that hasn't really been true for generations. Particularly if you are out to improve the world, you are going to wind up exporting your own ideas about world improvement.
Free-market types will urge freer markets, even when these take the form of the kind of corrupt privatization that gave rise to Russia's oligarchs. And the Obama administration, well, it thinks the wealthy need to be taxed more — everywhere.
"One of the issues that I have been preaching about around the world is collecting taxes in an equitable manner — especially from the elites in every country," Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said in her speech at the Clinton Global Initiative Monday. (More:A Wal-Mart for Libya)
Although Clinton noted that she is "out of politics" domestically, the audience was already chuckling at her clear reference to the debate over tax policy in the presidential contest.
"It is a fact that the elites in every country are making money. There are rich people everywhere, and yet they do not contribute to the growth of their own countries," Clinton said. (More:Romney and Obama Will Have a Close Call)
What Clinton meant by "contribute to growth" was revealing. She listed contributing to building schools and hospitals rather than domestic business investment, which is the conventional meaning of contributing to growth.
This is something that I hadn't realized was a part of the goals of U.S. foreign policy: higher taxes around the world on the wealthy. But now we know it straight from the mouth of Madam Secretary Clinton herself.
- by CNBC senior editor John Carney