Way back in July of 2003 Ron Paul wrote an article entitled “We’ve Been Neo-Conned” in which he laid out facts showing that the “Neo-Con” philosophy had taken over the foreign policy of the USA (For a quick primer on the Neo-Conservative movement please click the link above). As I was reading this article one question kept repeating in my head:
“How did it come to this?”
The only place to start I believe is with the American person (notice I didn’t use the plural “people”). I will use myself as an example since I believe my story is common to many modern-day libertarians and members of the Liberty movement.
In short, I was raised a Reagan Republican, became a Neo-Con after 9/11, converted to a Goldwater conservative after the invasion of Iraq and became a full-fledged libertarian after finding the writings of Murray Rothbard(OK, maybe every libertarian didn’t become one because of Murray but I think many have a similar story).
But here is what I believe is key in my story and the reason why there aren’t more capital “L” Libertarians: I didn’t get their foreign policy. Like many I actually referred to myself as libertarian on social and monetary issues, but not when it came to our “enemies”. I hear the same from freedom loving people over and over again, especially in the wake of 9/11.
The reason the Neo-Cons were able to seize power is FEAR. I am not putting anybody down because of it. I can certainly relate, but we still have to figure out why the American person is allowing our government todrop bombs and declare war on anybody they want to while we cheer them on. When does fear translate to lunacy?
As 2009 winds down, David Boaz notes that Barack Obama has taken ownership of our wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, which he promised to end as a candidate:
Speaking of Iraq in February 2008, candidate Barack Obama said, “I opposed this war in 2002. I will bring this war to an end in 2009. It is time to bring our troops home.” The following month, under fire from Hillary Clinton, he reiterated, ”I was opposed to this war in 2002….I have been against it in 2002, 2003, 2004, 5, 6, 7, 8 and I will bring this war to an end in 2009. So don’t be confused.”
Indeed, in his famous “the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow” speech on the night he clinched the Democratic nomination, he also proclaimed, “I am absolutely certain that generations from now we will be able to look back and tell our children that … this was the moment when we ended a war.”
I write this on May 24, the eve of Memorial Day, the day set aside to commemorate Americans who have died while in military service. This day was originally created (the first commemoration was May 30, 1868) to honor Union soldiers of the War Between the States, and was later expanded after World War I to include all those who have died in military service. Typically, commemorations can be expected to include much in the way of what is considered “patriotic” music (more accurately described as nationalistic), along with tributes themed along the lines of thanking those “who fight for our freedoms.” This spills over into Sunday services of many churches around the nation, when the emphasis temporarily focuses away from the praise of God and the proclamation of the Gospel, towards one of military service and national greatness.
In The Atlantic, Andrew Sullivan sums up neoconservatives as essentially advocates for an Israel-centered American foreign policy:
Tonight as I write this, given that I don’t possess a television and find live-streaming an often frustrating experience on my lap-top computer, I chose to read a prepared text of President Obama’s first State of the Union address rather than listen to it live. Reading such a text can reveal more in some ways, as one isn’t influenced by the mellifluous tones of a well-polished politician’s voice.
As a citizen of the United States and the world, I am very concerned with the trends I am seeing in Venezuela. Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez seems to be belligering the public into giving him more power:
It’s my belief that continued agression is in the future of the Obama administration and I’m writting this article to help define and document the similarities between the reasons for invading Iraq (Bush’s War) and which ever country Obama will invade or war he may escalate. Here are/will be the similarities, all bad reasons for war.
- Percieved threat where there is no actual threat. Commit an invasion where no harm has been done to us directly.
- Enforce UN resolutions.
- To remove a dictator.
- Establish/Spread democracy.
- Mercantilism. (Secure oil or other natural resources)
- False flag event.
I sincerly hope I’m proven wrong.
It looks like hearts and minds aren’t the only body parts America is trying to win:
In their efforts to win over notoriously fickle warlords and chieftains, the officials say, the agency’s operatives have used a variety of personal services. These include pocketknives and tools, medicine or surgeries for ailing family members, toys and school equipment, tooth extractions, travel visas, and, occasionally, pharmaceutical enhancements for aging patriarchs with slumping libidos, the officials said.