Friday, November 18, 2011

Non-Intervention In the Real World

I received a list of excellent questions from an Anonymous commenter on my last post, summarized by the first one: "How does non-intervention work in the real world?"  There are several followup questions, so I'll answer them here.

You write: "If we maintain a standing army, we keep it at home to secure our own borders"
So there is some discussion amongst non-interventionists as to whether or not the U.S. would keep a standing army? 


This is more a dispute between Libertarians in general.  Most non-interventionists (including myself) would not go as far as to completely disband the military.  However, we would significantly reduce it's size when not in times of declared war.  The details of the reduction (which branches get cut the most, what we do with the hardware in the meanwhile, how we keep people trained in it, etc.) would be up for serious discussion.

Would I be correct in assuming that “standing army” is a metaphor for all branches of the U.S. military? 

Yes.

Does that mean no power projection b y the U.S. naval fleet in the Pacific or Persian Gulf?

In the Pacific?  No, since those waters directly touch our own.  The Persian Gulf?  Maybe.  This would be an area for discussion

Does that mean no forward military bases in Korea, Germany, etc?

Each base would need to be evaluated, based on several criteria, including consultation with the host government.  (I mean, we wouldn't like it if Germany just put some "forward bases" on American soil, would we?  No.  Sure, we let them use our bases, but we would absolutely object to them owning a base here.  Quid pro quo, I say.)

What does this mean for the countries that the U.S. has guaranteed their protection?

Why are we guaranteeing protection for countries?  Are they paying for that protection (by money, resources, etc.)?  Obviously, Israel is at the top of the list.  The solution to that is easy: leave them alone, and stop sending money to their enemies ("Foreign aid").

What happens if some country, say Iran, decides to block the Strait of Hormuz? Keep in mind that even the threat of a blockade would send the oil markets sky-rocketing and the U.S. and world economy into a free fall. 

The answer to this is multi-faceted.  The first thing to do is to ramp up domestic oil production by removing the suffocating regulations the EPA has placed on the oil companies, and by lowering (or eliminating) the taxes for domestic oil, while (potentially) raising the tariffs for foreign oil.  That makes the impact of an action such as you describe much smaller.

Next (maybe even at the same time), we lift the sanctions on Iran: stop choking them out, and start a vigorous trade and diplomacy with them.  Become a partner that they would not want to harm.  (This is the carrot.)

On the other hand (the stick), make it clear that such an action would be viewed as an act of war.  If they proceed, we will get the Congress to declare war with clearly defined objectives, go kick their asses until those objectives are met, then come home.

This is what I was getting at in my original post.  Isolationists would just close their eyes and say "none of our business".  Non-Interventionists are simply reluctant to get involved militarily.  If we must get involved militarily, we will, but we would really prefer to solve the problem through truly peaceful means.  Also, if we do finally pull out the guns, we do so by following the constitutional process, and we don't lie about our reasons.  We finally "grow a pair".  If we're going to war for oil, then say "we're going to war for oil, because we need it.  We've tried every other way to get it, and none of it's worked."  If Congress won't pass that, then we don't go to war.  It's that simple.

One way the U.S. keeps the peace is via its military power projection throughout the world. 

Even if this is true (I don't think it is), my point is that this is a flawed method of keeping the peace.  It does not work, long-term.  In fact, it's already starting to fail.

But why do I say it's not true?  Because if you look at the century of US power, you find the bloodiest century in the history of the world.  There was no peace in the 20th century.  What peace are we keeping, when we are constantly at war?

The US has followed the way of Rome, and has lasted even less time, even when you take the rapidity of modern life into account.  Non-Interventionists say that we ought rather to follow the way of Byzantium, which lasted just over 1,000 years, and was only brought down by the combined efforts of the other two superpowers at the time: the Roman Catholic Church and the Muslim Caliphate.

To think that the greatest power in the world would simply walk away from its position is unthinkable. Especially since it would endanger its national security and economic stability.

Non-Interventionists don't advocate that we "simply walk away from [our] position".  That's what isolationists advocate.  This was my whole point: that we are not isolationists.  We are advocating, rather, that we solidify and strengthen our position by putting our military to proper use, and bringing the other engines of state back into the foreground where they belong.

23 comments:

  1. I was hoping for some clarity on your position.

    One hand you say the U.S, should significantly reduce its size when not at war, yet the details of the reduction would be up for “serious discussion”.

    Naval power projection would still be present in the Pacific and possibly the Persian Gulf. Yet forward bases would be evaluated on a case by case basis.

    How does on-intervention would work in the real world? I still have no idea since you offer zero details. Without any details it is not a plan but more of a pie in the sky dream.

    And then there is this bizarre statement: I mean, we wouldn't like it if Germany just put some "forward bases" on American soil, would we? No. Sure, we let them use our bases, but we would absolutely object to them owning a base here.

    Why exactly would Germany want a base in the U.S.? Are they concerned about Canada? Or Mexico? No, they don’t have a need for a base in the U.S. Furthermore, every base that we have in a foreign land is there by agreement with the host country.

    To think that the economic implications of a blockade of the Strait of Hormus could be minimized by ramping up domestic oil production, eliminating regulations and domestic oil taxes, raising the tariffs for foreign oil is simply fantasy. The U.S.
    consumes way much more oil then what could be impacted by the means you cite.

    Why is the U.S. guaranteeing protection for countries? It is not out of mere benevolence. It is done because it serves U.S. interests. You support on nation because it counter balances another so that no regional superpower develops. Or at least an unfriendly regional superpower.

    Even your war scenario with Iran is problematic. You say “declare war with clearly defined objectives, go kick their asses until those objectives are met, then come home”.

    Well if breaking a blockade of the Strait of Hormus is the clearly defined objective, then once this is done the U.S comes home what is in place to prevent another blockade? You would need at least a U.S. Naval presence in the area. And with that you would need support facilities (i.e. a forward base) in the area. And with that you would need an ally.

    You close by saying that: We are advocating, rather, that we solidify and strengthen our position by putting our military to proper use, and bringing the other engines of state back into the foreground where they belong.

    That statement is basically meaningless since it offers no real details as to how this would be achieved. And without those details it is impossible to evaluate.

    So it seems that the obvious choice is to stick with the status quo since it , though it is imperfect, works.

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  2. @Anonymous:

    Of COURSE it "offers no real details". That's what the State and Defense Departments are for: to figure out the details. Duh.

    I mean, you want me to put on one blog post the particulars of a plan that would take a year or more to even come up with, be at least partially based on highly classified information, and probably take another year or two (at least) to implement, and only then can you "really" evaluate it? That's rich.

    There are differences among policy, strategy (low and high), and tactics. I'm talking policy, and a little bit of high level strategy; you're asking for tactics, and low level strategy.

    The difference is: tactics follow strategy follow policy. The tactics may be right to implement a strategy that will accomplish a policy that is totally wrong. So you don't evaluate things based on tactics.

    You keep saying "the status quo...works". What do you mean by that? What goals is the status quo fulfilling? What policy brought the status quo into being? Ok, so maybe it is working. But -what- is it working?

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  3. Your first sentence of your first post (not the one on this site) was: Those conservatives who oppose Ron Paul's bid for presidency tend to do so because of his foreign policy.

    If Ron Paul and his supporters cannot show how his foreign policy would work in the real world why would anyone support it?

    To say that the State and Defense department will figure out the details is an abdication of responsibilities. What is his vision, how would the world can look based of his foreign policy. It seems like a blind foreign policy.


    The thinking seems to be, we have no idea how this will work or even if it will work, I don’t even know what the world would look like with this change but we are going to do it anyhow.

    I think any Presidential candidate would be able to clearly and cogently set out his policy in at least some detail

    What are the geopolitical implications of this foreign policy? What are the geopolitical implications of force removal from the Persian Gulf? What are the geopolitical implications of force removal from Korea? The Philippines?

    Evaluating any of these scenarios is not based on classified information. It would be done by simply knowing the geopolitical forces at play in each specific scenario and how they would most likely work out. And it is in this way one could evaluate a non interventionist position.

    What are the pros and cons of a certain action? What if the cost benefit ratio? Is it something that the U.S. would be comfortable living where? How would it impact National Security? What is the economic impact, if any?

    But when asked about specifics basically all you can say is there to be serious discussion as to a particular region.

    To try to hide behind an “I’m talking high level strategy and you’re talking lower level tactics” statement is nothing more than a smokescreen. The question comes down to will it work. What are the implications of such a strategy? That is why the details are so important. But you provide none.

    The scary thing is that you seem to want this extreme paradigm shift in foreign policy yet have seemingly not even begun to think out its implications.

    What do I mean by saying that the status quo works? I mean that the current strategy of power projection and working with allies diplomatically has kept the U.S. secure for decades. To now say one wants come in and change this proven, effective (yet imperfect) model for an unproven, untested model whose advocates refuse to lay out the simplest details is madness.

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  4. Smokescreen? No. My assertion in my original post was that we need a fundamental change of attitude, from "bully" to "strong, but mature".

    You say that the current strategy "has kept the U.S. secure for decades." The current strategy has only been in place officially for about three decades now. (Four if you count Vietnam, which was the first -catastrophic- step on this road.)

    Well, let's look at the effects of the current strategy.

    -- It has run us into the ground economically. War is expensive: always has been, always will be.
    -- It has stirred up hate and discontent against us in the Middle East, so that they started wanting to come over here and attack us (and actually did so, a couple of times).
    -- It has propped up dictators and totally radicalized the Middle East.

    As for my model being "unproven, untested": not at all! It was -the- model that kept the Byzantine empire around for 1,000 years. Also, it was -the- model for the first 200 years of this country's existence, and it worked just fine.

    Your model did the Roman Empire in within 500 years of it's adoption, and caused constant conflict for the entirety of those years. It's on the way to collapsing this country within the next 50 years -- probably sooner, if we don't get our domestic house in order.

    Lastly, you say: "If Ron Paul and his supporters cannot show how his foreign policy would work in the real world why would anyone support it?"

    Well, that's a good point. I never said we can't. I said that it's such a paradigm shift, to do so would require quite a bit of effort. Sure, I foisted that effort off onto the State and Defense Departments. But maybe you have a good point: we have a messaging issue, and should take the necessary steps to correct that.

    I don't intend to do so here, though, because that kind of discussion is more of a Forum or Council kind of issue...anything I put here would be just my opinion which I would contribute to the discussion; it would not be suitable for correcting the problem in and of itself.

    Our point is: we need to have the discussion, and quit just saying "Oh, Country X isn't behaving the way we think they should? Invade them!"

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  5. I think that the vast majority of financial experts would say that it was the sub prime mortgage lending crisis that was the cause of the current U.S economic situation and not the cost of the current U.S. war.

    The United States grants benefits to as many states as possible for not joining a system or alliance structure hostile to American.

    The United States also engages in bilateral military relationships in order to protect states that would normally be swallowed up by larger powers.

    These are not the actions of a bully but of a strong mature nation.

    Does it make for strange bedfellows at times? Yes. Does it mean that the U.S. will step on a few toes and stir up hatred at times? Yes.

    One must remember that the radicalization of the Middle East would most likely have occurred regardless of U.S. policy.

    To say that the non-interventionist is not "unproven or untested” because the Byzantine Empire used this model and that the U.S. used it as well forgets one thing. The world is a vastly different place now.

    Would that model work in today’s world? Again we have no idea since its advocates decline to provide details as to how this model would work in the real world.

    One of the problems seems to be that you see U.S. foreign policy as being summed up as “Oh, Country X isn't behaving the way we think they should? Invade them”

    That is a strawman and shows a total lack of understanding concerning the economic, diplomatic, and military options that the U.S. has available and utilizes. If one took the time to understand what U.S. foreign policy is and how it is implemented one would see that a hammer-fist of an invasion is that last option on the table after a vast amount of other (mostly non-military) options have been considered and or tried.

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  6. Anon, I would say it's govt over spending & ponzi borrowing to cover the shortfall. What you mentioned pales in comparison. The crisis you mention was bad economically, true. But a spoonful in the bucket compared to the debt we now have that was very excessive, before said crisis. Under 0 our debt is even worse.

    Part of the over spending that we ponzi borrow for IS military [as opposed to defense] spending.

    Problem is, all to often we do the hammer fist thing first. Well, may 2nd. First we have fringe media & neo-cons & other war hawks pounding the propaganda war drums. Weapons of mass destruction & 'Iran might build a nuke, OMG!' come to mind as subjects in this regard.

    Solution is: Not to have started down the path of interventionism. Interventionism does a great job of feeding the military industrial complex the blood of our youth & the treasure of our nation. But not much else.

    It cannot be truthfully denied that over feeding the military has contributed to our debt crisis. Or that military interventions around the world contribute to our debt crisis as a LOT of $ is sucked out the private sector to feed military 'adventures' & the military industrial complex that Ike warned us to avoid...

    Straw man? Hardly. You just dodged a good point.

    If we had not been provoking the ME since at least the 50's we would have not had 9-11.

    http://tinyurl.com/6txy6cz

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sjqGBBFiowE

    http://tinyurl.com/6o3rlcb

    A 'strong mature nation' would not be setting up dictators in the ME then taking them out later. A 'mature nation' would follow it's own laws, in our case, the US Constitution, when it comes to going to war.

    We are not authorized by our original [think Founder's intent] standards to willy nilly invade every country according to your criteria. Where were we when N Korea was building nukes? The Japanese? Old USSR? Other ME nations that have nukes? We didn't invade them...

    We are at a point now that even if bossy bullying US interventionism WAS a good thing [it is not!] we can NOT afford it any way.

    SamFox

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  7. I posted this before but I guess it was lost in cyber-space so let's try again.

    QUOTE: Part of the over spending that we ponzi borrow for IS military [as opposed to defense] spending.

    Please differentiate between “defense’ spending and “military” spending.

    QUOTE: Problem is, all to often we do the hammer fist thing first. Well, may 2nd. First we have fringe media & neo-cons & other war hawks pounding the propaganda war drums. Weapons of mass destruction & 'Iran might build a nuke, OMG!' come to mind as subjects in this regard.

    Another strawman. This statement ignores the diplomatic, political, economic and non-invasion military options that the US employs.

    QUOTE: “Solution is: Not to have started down the path of interventionism.

    Well unless you can get your hands on a time machine that is not much of a solution.

    QUOTE:: Straw man? Hardly. You just dodged a good point and that point was: Oh, Country X isn't behaving the way we think they should? Invade them”

    Sorry, but that is not US policy. I said it before and I’ll say it again, that is a strawman and shows a total lack of understanding concerning the economic, diplomatic, and military options that the U.S. has available and utilizes.

    If you think I am dodging the question please cite one US conflict where the first US response was invasion. Meaning that there was no economic pressures put on, no diplomatic calls made, and no non-invasion military option used (like a show of force)

    You won’t be able to. The US simply does not operate that way. That is why it is a strawman.

    QUOTE: If we had not been provoking the ME since at least the 50's we would have not had 9-11.

    Had we been non-interventionists 9-11 would not have happened? I’m not sure how one can say definitively that a foreign power or rouge force would not have attacked the US at some point in history.

    But what would the world have looked liked without the US intervening in the world affairs? In WWII the world was faced with an aggressive German ideology that joined forces with the fascism of Italy and Japan. WWII stared due to the aggressive attacks by Germany, Italy and Japan plus the appeasement (think non-interventionist) activities of the West.

    Nazi Germany would not have been stopped without US control economic and military aid. All of Europe (except Britain perhaps) and parts of Russia would have been under German control.

    After WWII the USSR would not have been contained without US aid. Economic and military.

    The abdication by the United States of some or all of the responsibilities for international would deprive the international system of one of its principal safety features, which keeps countries from smashing into each other, as they are historically prone to do.

    Grudgingly, tacitly, silently, other countries support the American role as the world’s government out of the well-grounded fear that while the conduct of the United States may be clumsy, overbearing, and even occasionally insufferable, the alternative would be even worse, perhaps much worse. Michael Mandelbaum The Case for Goliath: How America Acts as the World’s Government in the Twenty-First Century, . (p. 195) Michael Mandelbaum

    A world without United States is the most dangerous thing that could happen to this world. Only a superpower could fill that void and there is no country, not even the EU, that can fill that gap. Even if China, India, Japan, Australia and all other Asian countries united there is no way it could come close to the superpower status of the United States

    The Ron Paul once said that the “unintended consequences of our foreign policy are so overwhelming” But what he and his followers fail to understand is that the unintended consequences of a non-interventionist foreign policy are doubly overwhelming.

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  8. Re: http://tinyurl.com/6txy6cz Paul “predicts” mortgage collapse.

    First of all, politicians say many things on many subjects (and sometimes they contradict themselves) so they are bound to get some things correct just by the law of averages. But let’s assume that Paul was insightful and knew exactly what he was speaking about. Why did he not stop it or try to? He was a US Rep, why was he not out there raising a red flag warning of the coming US economic collapse? If he truly knew it was coming and did nothing then he is not much of a leader.

    It is probably best to think of that quote as an off handed comment that turned out to be prophetic. Because the alternative – that Paul knew a US economic collapse was coming and did nothing – would pretty much put the kibosh on Paul’s political career at least on a national stage.

    Re:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sjqGBBFiowE – People believe we were attacked on 9-11 for no reason.

    In ten years I have never heard anyone say that the 9-11 attacks were out of the blue. Most people I know say that it was due to US foreign policy.


    RE: http://tinyurl.com/6o3rlcb - The brief war to topple the Taliban and rid Afghanistan of Osama bin Laden was admirably executed, using air power, Northern Alliance allies, and a few C.I.A. agents on horseback to achieve a specific goal.

    If one think that the Taliban was toppled or that ousting OBL from Afghanistan would limit his power or that just a “few” CIA agents were in country (think US special forces) during that brief war than they are quite naïve.

    A 'strong mature nation' plays the geopolitical game, using its diplomatic, political, economic and military options regional stability throughout the world. 100 years ago non- interventionism by the US was feasible. Today it is not. The world is a vastly different place.

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  9. Anon: Sorry for the comment black hole...I was distracted from the blog for a while with Christmas and all, and didn't see your comments awaiting moderation. I have released the last two, and deleted the first two, since the last two are repeats of the first two. :)

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  10. Quote by Anonymous: But let’s assume that Paul was insightful and knew exactly what he was speaking about. Why did he not stop it or try to? He was a US Rep, why was he not out there raising a red flag warning of the coming US economic collapse? If he truly knew it was coming and did nothing then he is not much of a leader.
    -----
    Um....he -did-. Over and over and over again, for 30 years. He's -still- trying to, even running for President to do so.

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  11. Quote by Anon: It is probably best to think of that quote as an off handed comment that turned out to be prophetic. Because the alternative – that Paul knew a US economic collapse was coming and did nothing – would pretty much put the kibosh on Paul’s political career at least on a national stage.

    ----

    Two things here. 1) If that were the only quote and the only time he had said anything, then you would be right. But 2) it's not, and it wasn't. You are assuming that he has done nothing because he didn't manage to prevent it. This is just asinine. The fact is that as a Congressman, he is one voice of very many. He has been working tirelessly for 30 years to get the underlying problems fixed, and also spoke out very strongly and often against the particular issues that lead to the housing collapse. He also has voted consistent with his speeches: he practices what he preaches.


    He has also maneuvered himself into position to bring these issues to national attention.

    He has launched a national movement that is steadily building into a groundswell, resonating with the current and next generations of Americans both left and right, so that even if he is not successful short-term (and he might be yet!), in the long-term, once all the "old guard" has died off or retired (or, increasingly, been voted out of office), the voting populace's viewpoints will have been shaped by Mr. Paul, directly or indirectly, and America can proceed on solid ground again.

    So much for "not doing anything."

    This is one argument you're not going to win, because your propositions are completely unsupported by facts.

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  12. Ok, Anon...

    First things first. Would you mind telling us who you are? No worries if not, but it would be nice.

    Anyway...so I read the rest of your second post, and I think I see where you're going wrong. You've got a Messiah complex.

    You think that world peace is achievable through external means.

    For example, you say:
    ------
    The abdication by the United States of some or all of the responsibilities for international would deprive the international system of one of its principal safety features, which keeps countries from smashing into each other, as they are historically prone to do.
    ------
    Well, yeah, duh. Of course! But if you want to try to make world peace through human means, it's only going to happen with a world superpower. The problem is, it's -not- going to happen with the Nation system, with one Nation ruling the rest of them, as you want America to do. If what you have said is really your goal, then you should join in with the globalists who are destroying our country: because world government -is- their end game.

    Our point is not that the best way to world peace is for America to stop mucking around in things.

    Our point is that the best way to "preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States from all enemies, foreign and domestic" is to stop mucking around in things.

    Yes, the rest of the world will keep bumping into each other. That's been part of history since just after the beginning. But trying to make America the Messiah of the world (spreading "peace on earth, good will to men") isn't going to work.

    Besides all this, even if you are right that this is in fact the course required, as you state here:
    -------
    A world without United States is the most dangerous thing that could happen to this world. Only a superpower could fill that void and there is no country, not even the EU, that can fill that gap. Even if China, India, Japan, Australia and all other Asian countries united there is no way it could come close to the superpower status of the United States.
    -------
    If that's the case, then the world is well and truly fucked. (Pardon my French.) I say this because in pursuing this goal, we are collapsing. We are going the way of Rome, the last nation to try this shit -- internal strife and social chaos, coupled with external strife and pissing off enough "barbarians" that they are going to kick our asses after we go broke trying to fight them off while keeping our people checked out with bread and circuses.

    So...even if you're right, we're still going down the wrong path, if we want to maintain national sovereignty. So even if you're right, you're wrong.

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  13. Perhaps you are correct that I won’t win the argument concerning Ron Paul and his insight about the US economic crisis that started in 2008. You say my propositions are completely unsupported by facts. But you didn’t provide any facts. Please provide the evidence that Ron Paul was sounding the alarm prior to the 2008 US economic crisis. If you cite nothing more than Paul’s concerns about the excessive national debt I won’t be too impressed as tons of people have been talking about that for quite a number of years. But if you can show that he was speaking out about the dangers of sub-prime lending, government easing the regulations on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, credit default swaps, collateralized debt obligations, and credit creation (interest rates remaining too low for too long which results in excessive credit, speculative economic bubbles and lowered savings) which is inevitably followed by a bust then you would have the facts on your side. But enough of the bluster, just the facts.

    A messiah complex is a state of mind in which an individual holds a belief they are, or are destined to become, a savior. I don’t see myself like that at all nor do I see America as being “the Messiah of the world spreading peace on earth, good will to men". Where you get that idea from is beyond me.

    America is involved in world affairs for America’s sake. Involved diplomatically, economically, covertly, and militarily if the need arises. There is not one nation that is not involved in world affairs at least to some extent. And those that are not extensively involved simply ride on the coat-tails of much more powerful countries. Non-interventionists want to go back one hundred years in the past when the world was a vastly different place. And we saw what happened when nations failed to get involoved with the affairs of other nations during the 1930’s and 40’s. What would have happened if the USA had been a non-interventionist country throughout that time period? Sprechen sie deutsch, anyone? I never had a cogent response to this question by a non-interventionist”

    I am not speaking about a world government. The US and her allies simply want their fair share of the pie. And that is what every other nation wants. Unfortunately there is only so much pie and if we added up what every nation wants we would need at least a pie and a half. So it is simply ridiculous to think that if America just pulls back other nations will not grab for more – which means less for the US and her allies. Why would anyone want to go that route?

    And I refute the idea that America is “going the way of Rome” with “internal strife and social chaos” due to its involvement in world politics. America’s main internal problem is one of economics. The USA simply spends more than it takes in.

    Strait of Hormuz: Iran has recently stated that it would block oil shipments through the entrance to the Persian Gulf if the West imposes sanctions (a boycott of Iranian oil) targeting Iran's oil exports. The vast majority of Iran's foreign revenue comes from oil exports and a boycott could be devestating. All of this is due to Iran’s nuclear program.

    Does Iran have the right to build nuclear weapons?

    Does any nation(s) have the right to try and stop nuclear proliferation?

    Does any nation(s) have the right to not buy exports from a specific country?

    Does any nation(s) have the right to simply cut off oil supply to half the world?

    Does any nation(s) have the right to try to keep the oil supply flowing?

    What would be the Ron Paulian response to this?

    What would be the strategy of a non-interventionist in a situation like this which has the possibility of crippling the US and world economies for the forseeable future?

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  14. As for who I am, I'm just a guy with an interest in geopoliitics who stumbled upon your post and thought he'd kick the tires so to speak to see if there was any validity to your view. I saw non-interventionism as naive and dangerous before and haven't heard anything here that has changed my mind yet.

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  15. Your non-reponse to my questions is why Ron Paul won't be elected. His policies are too weird, too odd, flaky for intelligent Americans to take seriously.

    Non-interventionism may have been an option 100 years ago but now it is a non-starter as you lack of a response proves.

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  16. Ok, so...here we go. Regarding foreign policy.

    A History lesson first: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_WVtpao0KSM&feature=share

    A lengthy, specific speech, (not the only one on these lines, by the way) with juxtaposed fulfillment: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zGDisyWkIBM&list=LLYt_VRRlAJ2CrxBS1gmV34A

    A nice vindication: http://www.ronpaul2012.com/2012/01/06/the-atlantic-ron-paul-vindicated-on-iran/

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  17. In the first video Paul in 2002 give a nice geopolitical analysis of the then current world situation and a good projection for the next 5 to 10 years. However, any decent geopolitical analyst could have done so. He did not however predict the 2008 US financial crisis which you said he did. Just mentioning the national debt was not enough.


    I’m not sure what the point of the 2nd video was to suppose to be. Was I supposed to be shocked by the US actions in ’53? Or was I supposed to be shocked by the fact the US played both sides in the Iran Iraq war?

    Other countries do the exact same thing. Do enough research on any country and you’ll find that they have done some sort of intervening in other countries affairs.

    Best line in the video – The US “maintained the regional balance of power” in the Middle East. That is a perfect summation of US foreign policy. Not just in the ME but around the word. No regional super powers allowed!

    The last link wants the US to look at world situation, not for a US stand point but from that of other countries.

    One thing non-interventionist seems to overlook. They seem to think that other nations would be friendly to the US if we had not acted the way we did in the past. But what would the world look like if the US had not intervened in past world events?

    I gave an example of WWII and said that no non-interventionist had ever given a cogent response to this, and that statement still stands.


    The only solution that can be derived from these videos – since none are explicitly laid out - is that the US should not have done what they did in the past. No much of a solution. Non interventionists don’t seem to have solutions to the present or a vision for the future. Just a complaint about the past

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  18. Would you like to go back to my post on the Dec 29th and address those questions?

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  19. @Anon: "my lack of response" only proves that I'm a busy guy, and that we're talking about several topics here, nothing more. I'm getting to it! Sheesh.

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  20. @anon: although...the fact that you would assert that "my lack of response" -does- prove anything displays your ignorance, at best, of logic. If this is deliberate, it also displays your complete willingness to engage in meaningless rhetoric in a banal attempt to persuade readers of the "correctness" of your position without regard to it's actual correctness or lack thereof. This is called "underhanded".

    If you want to have a real conversation, using real logic to truly hash out these topics, fine. But if you keep up with the baseless and downright disingenuous mere rhetoric, I'm going to quit publishing your comments. You want to grandstand and spout illogical opinion, feel free -- on your own blog.

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  21. Regarding WWII: http://ps27-4.blogspot.com/2012/01/non-intervention-and-wwii.html

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  22. @anon:

    Re: predicting --specifically!-- the housing bubble, here you go: http://paulitifact.com/2011/07/08/claim-ron-paul-predicted-the-growth-and-burst-of-the-housing-bubble/

    Re: the video about Iran: no, you weren't supposed to be shocked. The fact is that the popular narrative regarding Iran is completely ignorant of these facts, or at best knows but ignores them. The conclusion of the video is why I posted it: The West started this (for oil, no less!), and we can finish it, without resorting to war, I think. I will address this in a future blog post, so I would rather not continue the conversation on this comment thread. When I write that one, I'll post the link here.

    Re: "that's what we do" -- that's my whole point: why!? We gave money to both sides. We could have just given money to neither (or only one, if absolutely necessary), and it would have been fine. But once again...I'll address this in more detail in the aforementioned upcoming post on Iran.

    Re: "you're just complaining about the past". No, no, no....we're using our past decisions, and their direct causal connections to the present, as examples. You see, the definition of an idiot is the one who does the same thing expecting a different result. Or, put another way, the one who does not learn from the past is doomed to repeat it. Do we -really- want to repeat the 20th century?

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  23. The “lack of response” post was not mine – anyone can post as “anonymous”. Unfortunately I do not have an account for any of the other profile options so all I can do is post as anonymous. I’ll post responses to your posts shortly.

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Hi! Feel free to comment. However, I was getting posts from different Anonymous people, and it's difficult to know who is who so I can keep the conversation straight in my head. So I'm requesting that you please bear with my weakness, and identify yourself. Even if you want to use a different name than your real name -- that's fine. But give yourself a handle for me, please. :) Thanks...