Was Reagan A Dove?

From Foreign Policy b/w of The Daily Beast comes some really fascinating thought on Ronald Reagan’s approach to foreign affairs:

Was the Gipper as tough as his fans make him out to be? “Today’s conservatives have conjured a mythic Reagan who never compromised with America’s enemies and never shrank from a fight,” Peter Beinart writes in an excerpt of his new book, The Icarus Syndrome: A History of American Hubris, in Foreign Policy magazine. “But the real Reagan did both those things, often. In fact, they were a big part of his success.” Beinart says Reagan was “terrified of war” and he fought suggestions, from both within and outside his own administration, that he bomb or send troops into Nicaragua, El Salvador, and Cuba. Beinart also takes issue with the conservative boast that Reagan “frightened” the Soviet Union into submission. “The problem with this story is that Reagan began abandoning his hard-line anti-Soviet stance in late 1983, 18 months before Gorbachev took power,” Beinart writes.

A critical case in point here would be the bombing of the Marine barracks in Lebanon in 1983. It killed 241 American servicemen, the most killed in an assault on American troops since World War II. Reading about the attack’s response is illuminating:

Why I Loved CPAC

There were alot of wackos at CPAC. As I journeyed from booth to booth, I encountered several nutjobs. One man was dressed in eighteenth century garb, complete with rapier, illustrating that cosplay is not just a phenomenon of comic book and anime conventions. LaRouche cultists asked me if I was “ready to send Obama to the moon.” I heard quite a few Old Guard Republicans declare, when provided with literature from the Campaign for Liberty, “Ron Paul! That son-of-a-bitch wants us to surrender.”

Those amusing eccentrics were outweighed by the energy and enthusiasm there. I was among alot of leftists during the Bush years, and there was nowhere near the hatred and venom toward Obama that the left displayed towards Bush. While Dick Cheney scoured and groaned through his speech, Newt Gingrich, Glenn Beck and Ron Paul delivered magnificent speeches in which they provided counter-solutions to what the Democrats and Obama have put forth.

With all of the talk about markets, freedom and the foundations of America (countless venders were giving out copies of the Constitution), CPAC could have been confused with the 2008 Rally for the Republic. Keynote speaker Glenn Beck even spoke that America should not spread democracy but instead “lead by example.” Ron Paul winning the presidential straw poll was the icing on the cake. Sarah Palin, the incredibly unqualified beauty queen from Alaska, was nowhere to be found and a distant third in the straw poll. CPAC was wonderful and renewed my faith in conservatism, the Republican Party and America.

Republican Hypocrisy on Health Care

Many Republicans are standing tough against President Obama’s proposed takeover of the American health care system; however, many prominent voices within the GOP are at the same time displaying an unprecedented level of hypocrisy when they oppose Democratic health care reform.

Torturous Terms of Art

The matter of torture has been discussed over the past several years in connection with its use as a “tool” in the “Global War on Terror” or the “Overseas Contingency Operation” as it has now been called. Dick Cheney has been recently making rounds in an attempt to salvage some credibility and to fuel the partisan fire.

Obama’s Socialism Problem

Barack Obama got a little touchy over a question from The New York Times during a recent interview:

President Obama was so concerned that he may have mishandled a question from New York Times reporters about whether he was a socialist, that he called the paper to clarify his position. The president initially answered the question aboard Air Force One saying, “Let’s take a look at the budget, the answer would be no.”

The president explained he wanted a return to the tax rates of the 1990s by giving a tax-cut to 95 percent of workers. But the president may have felt that was too dismissive, and called the Times from the Oval Office explaining: “It was hard for me to believe that you were entirely serious about that socialist question… it wasn’t under me that we started buying a bunch of shares of banks. it wasn’t on my watch.”

Creating Terror

By now, everyone is aware that Hamas has attacked Israel, though it was Israel itself which broke the ceasefire. I no longer have a television but I know the story is plastered on every major news network because it is also plastered on every political blog and social networking site. There is an entire network of supporters on both sides of the conflict insisting that their side is blameless and that the concerns of the other side are unremarkable. Both sides are spewing enough hyperbole and anger to warrant concern about fistfights breaking out stateside.

The conflict between Israel and it’s “neighbors” in Gaza and the West Bank is a great big mess that apparently has just one solution - according to a large group of foreign policy geniuses in America and Israel: more fighting.

Shades of Red

I believe the very heart and soul of conservatism is libertarianism.  I think conservatism is really a misnomer, just as liberalism is a misnomer for the liberals… The basis of conservatism is a desire for less government interference or less centralized authority or more individual freedom, and this is a pretty general description also of what libertarianism is. -President Ronald Reagan

The past two general election cycles have been bleak for the Republican Party. Looking  back on its celebrated rise from near irrelevancy in the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s, it becomes clear that 1994 was a peak rather than a new beginning.  When Newt Gingrich, Jim Babka and PNAC took control of the GOP from what was left of the Goldwater/Reagan conservatives, it marked the beginning of the end.

The Good That Will Come From Tuesday

Barack Obama’s election as President didn’t come as a surprise to any of us.  There was only one path to victory for the Republican ticket and it hinged on Pennsylvania turning red, a task not done since 1988.  Despite the smiling faces and forced optimism conveyed by the McCain campaign, we all knew what was going to happen Tuesday night.  However, Tuesday’s results are not as bad as they might seem, the era of Obama will not have the long term effect that many have predict it will, and the liberty movement will not suffer a dramatic setback as a result of this new wave of Democratic leadership.

The GOP Shakeup Begins

Politico is reporting that the third ranking Republican in the House of Representatives, Adam Putman, has decided to resign his position. Putnam, 34, elected in 2000, has been viewed as a rising party star able to provide a young fresh face to party leadership. His most recent national point of importance occurred when he stood aside Bush surrogates and other Republican Party leaders attempting to sell the $850 billion TARP Bailout package to skeptical House Republicans.

So wondering how does this effect things? Won’t this neocon just be replaced by yet another neoconservative with little to no true conservative principles? Well the following is an interesting development-

My Prediction for the Election

As election day is now upon us, I will weigh in with my prediction as to who will win the presidential election, why that will be so and how it came about.  Predicting the outcome of an election, particularly one that is so emotionally charged, is risky.  In any case, here is what I predict:

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