It is not within the libertarian ethos to have government create regulations that hinder competition, especially those that favor big businesses over smaller businesses. Conversely, it is within the libertarian philosophy to defend the nation from military attack. However, the line where defense becomes interference in the affairs of another country seems to be set in different places by different libertarians.
|Judaism Without Embellishment|
Now, I am not talking about 20/20 historical vision, like say, what if Abraham Lincoln had actually extended the 1862 emancipation of slaves beyond the confines of the nation's capital. Although that would have been the right thing for the Congress and the President to do, and quite expensive, there is little doubt that the States that began leaving the Union in December 1860 would have returned at that point. Of course, war could have been averted if the federal government had recognized the right of any State to secede from the Union in the first place, as was the thinking among some at least as far back as 1798, long before the secession of South Carolina. No, I am talking about wholesale rewrites of history by people who should know better and/or are banking on the fact that their listeners do not know any better either.
Which brings me to the case of Doctor Ron Paul, Republican Representative to the Congress, from Texas. In 2007, his solution for averting the American Civil War was for the Union to purchase slaves from their Southern owners. (video)
Beyond what I mentioned above, and as you probably know, the Civil War was already underway before Lincoln took office and seven States had seceded. This is far from the only case where Dr. Paul has been historically or fact challenged and it fits in with the pacifist leanings of him and his supporters.
Recently, Dr. Paul had a simple solution to the ongoing issues that Iran is having with pretty much every nation on the planet, other than China, North Korea, Venezuela and Russia. Unarguably, the greatest friction is between Iran and the countries that are within range of Iranian ballistic missiles, or will be within range in a few years. According to Dr. Paul, all President Obama needs to do is pick up the phone and call Iran, and he likens it to when President Kennedy "called Nikita Khrushchev" to avert a war during the Cuban Missile Crisis. (Around the 3:00 mark in the video):
Again, Dr. Paul misses a great deal of the factual historical record, like the fact that Kennedy never called Khrushchev. Here is his comment via MondoWeiss.Net:
Paul: "If she (Michelle Bachmann) thinks we live in a dangerous world, she ought to think back to when I was drafted in 1962 with the nuclear missiles in Cuba. And Kennedy calls Khrushchev and talks to him and talks him out of a nuclear excahnge (sic). You’re trying to dramatize this... we have to treat Iran like we've treated Iraq and kill a million Iraqis and 8000 some Americans have died since we've gone to war.Shortly after the debate where Representative Paul uttered this comment, Charles Krauthammer and others began pointing out a few items Ron Paul left out. The highlights (some from me, some from the Krauthammer video, some from other places around the 'net):
- The hard evidence that the Soviets were installing nuclear tipped missiles in Cuba came partly from reconnaissance flights by U2 high altitude jets over Cuba. Part of the analysis was the similarity to the layout of the missile installation to aerial photographs taken by US reconnaissance aircraft of the same model of Soviet missiles in the USSR. These flights were by manned high altitude aircraft performing the same mission as the US drone recently captured by Iran. In the same debate, Ron Paul complained about the US "flying drones over Iran."
- Human intelligence from Cuban ex-patriots living in Miami, Florida was the first indication of offensive Soviet missiles in Cuba.
|Condolence letter to Mrs. Anderson|
- Later, Kennedy ordered low level flights by Crusader jets over Cuba once every two hours. Hardly a reduction in provocative actions.
- President Kennedy ordered a blockade of Cuba, arguably an act of war even though the action was approved by the Organization of American States. Kennedy fell back on the typical Leftist tactic of renaming things, calling it a quarantine. Part of the quarantine terms were to board and sink, if necessary, any Soviet ships sailing to Cuba. It began 800 miles from Cuba and was later brought to within 500 miles of Cuba.
- Kennedy never picked up any phone to talk to Khrushchev! The two exchanged letters, the first sent by Khrushchev about a "serious threat to peace and security of peoples." Kennedy's letter in response laid the responsibility of the crisis squarely at the feet of the Soviets. The letter exchanges did result in a typical Leftist capitulation, the US removed missiles in Turkey in exchange for Soviet removal of missiles from Cuba. The Soviet officials that President Kennedy and his brother, the Attorney General Robert Kennedy (the president's little brother) were Ambassador Dobrynin and Foreign Minister Andrei Gromyko.
The praise Ron Paul gives for John F. Kennedy's actions during the Cuban Missile Crisis are the same actions that he condemns even contemplating with Iran.
Congressman Paul is by far the libertarian with the highest profile in America today. He has a fantastic education and a successful son who represents Kentucky in the United States Senate. However, Ron Paul's idea of national defense is tantamount to issuing every coastal home a musket and two rounds of ammunition. His attitude is shared, or seen as somewhat hawkish, by throngs of libertarians with roots in the modern Left.
Iran is an international belligerent beyond the level of Cuba when they were marching around Africa and South America until the collapse of the Soviet Union. With Iran's training and support of Hamas and Hezbollah, they have launched direct attacks on US allies, most notably on Israel in 2006. They threaten international shipping through the Straits of Hormuz and receive the wholesale support of neo-Marxists worldwide, as well as by Ron Paul. In another post I plan to outline Dr. Paul's ideological alliance with the hard Left and Palestinian terrorists. Note that Ron Paul is charging Israel with "acts of war" that he ignores in his Kennedy praise.
One tactic that both Marxist and some libertarians use is the "elected government" excuse, i.e., Gaza elected Hamas as their government, therefore Hamas can do whatever it likes. Well libertarians, I ask you, whatever it likes to whom? For one thing, the first acts the Gaza government did (after Israel gave the Gaza strip to them) was to refuse to acknowledge Israel as a legitimate government and then declared war on Israel. Somehow, the Ron Paul libertarians miss these little historic fact points and jump to the declaration that Israel is committing an act of war by enforcing a weapons blockade of Gaza. While it is laughable when Marxists invoke that excuse, since the occasional novelty of elected Marxist governments did not begin until around the late 1970s, it is tragic when people who say that they know history and value freedom use the free election excuse.
The big difference between National Socialists and International Socialists is that the National Socialists tend to gain power by winning free, honest elections. International Socialists rarely bother with elections and opt for military takeovers. Do these libertarians truly believe that Hitler and Mussolini should have been left alone because they were elected?
No, a strong line needs to be drawn between the free peoples and the Socialist slavers. Iran falls fully into the ranks of authoritarian Socialist republics, they just happen to use the Koran instead of the Communist Manifesto as their top-down planning guide.
If the libertarian position is truly on the opposite side of the spectrum from Socialism, then it should be there because it opposes the imprisonment of the mind and soul that Socialism thrives on. Libertarianism cannot stand idly by and watch oppressors gobble up victims one border at a time, or worse, mirror the anti-interventionism of the British Union of Fascists.