Conservatives against war

Yesterday, our friends at the Cato Institute hosted a panel dealing with conservatism and war, moderated by Grover Norquist with Rep. Tom McClintock, Rep. John Duncan and Rep. Dana Rohrabacher on the panel.

It’s refreshing to hear conservative Republicans, outside of Rep. Ron Paul, talk about the mistake of going to war in Iraq:

National Journal releases vote rankings for Members of Congress

The National Journal issued its annual vote rankings for Members of Congress last week. The rankings determine who are the most conservative and liberal members of both the House and Senate.

The ratings are odd for libertarians since we do not fit on the left/right, liberal/conservative polticial spectrum. If you wanted to simplify it for the great unwashed you could say we are socially liberal and fiscally conservative. However, that doesn’t fully explain libertarianism. So, take these rankings for what you want since there is no ranking on constitutional fidelity.

Some interesting things I found in the rankings is that Sen. Bernie Sanders, a self-described socialist, is the 38th most liberal member of that chamber. Rep. Ron Paul is ranked at the 140th most conservative member in the House. The most liberal Republican in the Senate is Olympia Snowe. The most liberal Republican in the House is Mike Castle. The most conservative Democrat in the Senate is Evan Bayh, while Bobby Bright is the most conservative Democrat in the House.

Ten Most Liberal House Members

Individual Liberty or National Security: Bob Barr v. John Yoo

During a recent event sponsored by the University of Chicago Law School’s Federalist Society, former US Rep. Bob Barr (R-GA) and John Yoo, whose legal opinions paved the way for the Bush Administration to subvert the Constitution and Bill of Rights, squared off for a debate on national security and individual liberty during wartime.

Here is the debate in its entirety:

Elections, And Why The American Economy Will Collapse

I know what you’re thinking: man that Pete is a positive guy. I like to describe myself as realistic, with a bit of fatalism throw in. Either way, I find it hard to look at the economic landscape and have any hope. It is especially dreadful when politicians have to get re-
elected, AND said politicians consult certain “economists”.

Economists have for years looked at what is happening in a society and sought to come up with solutions as to how an economic crisis can be “fixed”. The problem is, like in all fields, you have good economists, and you have the not so good (The latter seem to be the ones that always find their way onto the public payroll).

In extremely broad terms economists can be split into two categories:

1. The “good” economist traces what a policy can do not only in the present, but 
in the future; AND what it does for not only one segment of society, 
but the whole.

2. The “bad” economist does the exact opposite; they examine only what 
will fix the present issue and usually concentrate on only one segment of 
the population.

If you are a student of American history your eyes should be opening as to which economist is most often chosen by our elected officials. The real question is “why”?

Well, why wouldn’t a politician pick economist #2?

Who Hijacked American Foreign Policy?

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?

UPDATED: Palin to resign

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) will not seek re-election next year and will resign her post effective July 25th:

The move, coming nearly a year before she would be forced to reveal her plans by filing deadlines, is sure to lead to widespread speculation that Palin will devote herself full-time to a presidential bid in 2012.

Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell, who nearly beat Rep. Don Young in the GOP primary for Alaska’s lone House seat, will assume the office.

Andrew Sullivan on Neoconservatism

In The Atlantic, Andrew Sullivan sums up neoconservatives as essentially advocates for an Israel-centered American foreign policy:

Obama’s Presidential Address to Congress

Not because I believe in bigger government, I don’t. -Obama


Many of you watched Obama make his first address to Congress tonight. His speech was concentrated nearly entirely on the economy. He started out by talking about the pitiful state of our economy, and how it is affecting everyone either directly or indirectly. He reiterated the point that America will prevail and recover. I don’t doubt that we will prevail and recover, but not because of Keynesian economic policies that the Democratic Party and Neocons are implementing. Not because of the spending, bailing out, and intervention of the Federal Government.

Hitchens Gets A Lebanese Beatdown

Famed provocateur Christopher Hitchens made a bad move while in Lebanon:

However, when the controversial author, journalist and broadcaster defaced a political poster on a visit to Beirut last week, he found himself at the wrong end of a bruising encounter that has left him walking with a limp and nursing cuts and bruises.

Hitchens had been drinking on Beirut’s main boulevard, Hamra Street, on Saturday afternoon with two other western journalists after attending a rally to commemorate the assassination of the former Lebanese prime minister, Rafik Hariri. They spotted a poster for the Syrian Social Nationalist Party, a far-right group whose logo bears an uncanny resemblance to the Nazi swastika, and Hitchens decided to act.

Chavez: A 21st Century Castro

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:

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