July 12

isolationism and our Founding Fathers

by now you know that I’m a Ron Paul supporter. you may also know that Ron Paul is opposed to the Iraq war (and has been from the beginning) because he is opposed to all [unprovoked] wars in other countries, and is in favor of a strong defense [the Iraq war was not provoked by Iraq or Iraqis, it was an act of terrorism – though who those terrorists are or where they live is something I’ll leave for another day]. an interesting question came up recently: if it weren’t for countries helping other countries win wars, if it weren’t for the help we were given from France and Spain, we would never have won our independence from Britain! so why shouldn’t we help other countries in the same way?

well, for one thing, France and Spain only helped us out because they were already fighting Britain, and wanted to force the war to a third front. so it was strategic. but the contemporary ‘short’ of it is… America must “remove the log in its own eye” before trying to impose our will on and fix other countries. our country right now is spiralling out of control (and has been for decades). our money should be focused on one thing: making the united States a better nation.

there are no doubt civil injustices, dark circumstances, cold-blooded murders, happening across the world. many Americans feel a strong moral obligation to ‘fix’ those problems. but one must ask, why wouldn’t the people of that land take arms? if a tyrannical state started imposing itself on Americans, wouldn’t (shouldn’t) we fight for our freedom, to the death, instead of depending on another nation? there will always be fighting between nations or peoples, but whenever we get involved it weakens us financially and militarily as a whole. the US is not crowned (nor should it be) the adjudicator or policeman of the world.

apart from that, I stay true to the traditional libertarian view as it applies to most issues: the more power we give to our gov’t, the more they will screw things up, the more corruption takes root, the more abuse occurs. look at the Iraq War. we (may have) had good intentions, but now a lot of Iraqi citizens hate the US because they are imprisoned or killed trivially, and we are seen as imperialists (which we are). and Halliburton/KBR are making a fat paycheck.

I would also point out that staying out of other countries’ political affairs is not isolationism, it is non-interventionism; isolationism includes non-interventionism as well as protectionism (economic isolationism), something RP does not support. we should seek to trade freely and to seek peace and prosperity with other nations; we should be the friend of the world, not the enemy.

We have a lot of goodness in this country, and we should promote it; but never through the barrel of a gun.

– Ron Paul


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Posted July 12, 2009 by calenfretts in category "politics

5 COMMENTS :

  1. By Your old man on

    How does the iraq war make us imperialistic?

  2. By frettsy on

    Bush has stated that Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11, yet that’s the “reason” why we invaded.
    we go in there, set up a government how we want it, force them to play by our own rules, and “develop” their country by installing Mickey D’s and RadioShacks wherever we want (read Confessions of an Economic Hitman! think I forgot to tell you about that one, Pops).
    oh and we of course retain our military bases there, and our “peacekeeping force”.

  3. By Your old man on

    Iraq may have had nothing to do with 9/11 but they were harboring Al Quaeda in violation of the Bush Doctrine. We didn’t set up their government, we helped them form a democracy, which we know is the best form of govt, and the citizens voted for the leaders. We also helped them on the road to capitalism and US business invested in their country to everyone’s benefit. If it’s a good thing here, then why is it bad there? I do think they should share some oil revenues with us in gratitude but we didn’t even push for that! We maintain bases in many countries which is obviously in our national interest, esp in the MidEast in case of war, and I don’t think anyone wants our peacekeeping force to be there any longer than necessary. I don’t see how this imperialism is beneficial to us, beyond the military bases. Imperialism to me means “building an empire” and ruling it, taking spoils and leaving the people to fend for themselves however they can. We can’t know every detail of what got us there or everything we did there, and we can’t know the real motives of the actors, only what they tell us. Obviously no war is perfectly fought but I think the pros outweigh the cons in this case by a long way. Answer big boy. When you can.

  4. By frettsy on

    so I just basically wrote an essay response and the page errored when I submitted. I’m an idiot. hum.

    I don’t remember seeing proof that Iraq was harboring Al-Qaida.. do we have proof of that? (legit question). anyways.. saying that Iraq violating the Bush Doctrine is a valid reason to invade is like saying that Russia violating the Calen Doctrine is a valid reason to invade. Iraq has sovereignty just as the US has sovereignty, and ours is no more important or relevant than theirs.

    the Iraq Interim Gov’t was installed by the US, and while we technically no longer run things over there, in my opinion it would be naive to thing we aren’t pressing buttons behind the scenes (we are still an occupation force and all).

    sure democracy and capitalism are good things, but how dare we force them (or anything) upon another people? how is that our moral or political responsibility? further, how is it our fiscal responsibility, and how can we put the lives of our men and women, and the strength (and possibily existence) of our country, on the line?

    peacekeeping forces aren’t supposed to go around capturing and killing people, they’re supposed to stand in as a temporary police force. our forces in Iraq are not peacekeeping forces.

    this is corporate imperialism, not the traditional territorial imperialism. again, I want you to read “Confessions of an Economic Hitman” and give me your thoughts. the war is being fought for the advancement of capitalism, but not for the altruistic “rights of the Iraqis” – it’s for Halliburton (and its subsidiaries, of course).

    this version wasn’t as eloquent as what I wrote before, but I was ticked off because computers and the internet suck.

  5. By Old man on

    Well at least try to be a happy idiot, like me.

    Al Qaida in Iraq? Depends who you ask. Some say yes, some say no. Common sense says birds of a feather flock together, and we know they were in many Middle Eastern countries. I have absolutely no doubt that if I was to spend some hours in research I could come up with affirmative info. If you believe in the power of our intelligence agencies to put out disinformation, then who can attest to the truthfulness of anything we read. To me the more important point is this: when we are attacked as on 9/11, what should we do? Nothing? The Bush Doctrine was put forth forcefully to the entire world and it should have been obvious to all that we were serious about it. These are the kind of things over which legitimate wars are fought (9/11). Our sovreignty was invaded. We responded. We will leave Iraq a better place than we found it. Sorry, the Calen Doctrine doesn’t carry the weight of the United States!

    The people of Iraq had a democratic election for their current leaders! No doubt we’re still applying pressure over there – our people are protecting a fledgling democracy and our people are still at risk! It would be insane to not apply pressure where necessary to accomplish our goal of building a philosophical ally in that region. It’s in our best interests and I think we had a moral obligation to intervene in the criminal genocide and torture that was going on there. I understand non-intervention but when all points are considered together I thinik we had an obligation to go in, and we now have an obligation to see it through, or we have learned nothing from the Bay of Pigs incident.

    Do the cops here in the US capture criminals? Do people get killed while committing crimes? Do innocents sometimes get jailed or killed here? Absolutely and you can’t keep the peace anywhere without the threat of those punitive measures, least of all in a fresh post-war zone.

    It’s a real stretch to say we went in there to advance capitalism but I’ll read Confessions if you can tell me where i can find it online.

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