Ron Paul – The Revolution: A Manifesto – Page 26 through Page 33

Page 26: The Iraq war has been portrayed as a partisan issue. That is not the case. There are supporters of the war and an interventionist foreign policy on both sides of the political aisle. In many cases liberals were just as enthusiastic about the Iraq war as conservatives were. In 2006 and 2007 it looked like the war party was going to try to start a conflict with Iran. In December 2007, a new National Intelligence Estimate came out stating that Iran had likely stopped pursuing nuclear weapons in 2003. The report curbed the momentum against Iran.

Quote: “Following the off-year election in 2006, congressional Democrats, for the most part, revealed themselves once again to be a sorry excuse for an opposition party, continuing to fund the war and refusing to take any bold action.”

Page 27: The media seems ready to participate in any war propaganda needed by the white house. Ron Paul has long held the position that there is no immediate nuclear weapons threat from Iran. However, despite National Intelligence Estimate, the administration continued to treat the threat from Iran as imminent. The administration tried to downplay the legitimacy of the report. They said that the only reason Iran gave up their program in 2003 was American pressure. The conclusion from the administration was that pressure must be kept on Iran through more sanctions.

Page 28: Iran has been asked to prove a negative; to prove that they are not doing something. Iran is a signatory of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and there is no evidence that they have ever violated the treaty. Despite the National Intelligence Estimate and the lack of any real evidence that Iran was developing a nuclear weapon, President Bush signed an executive order declaring the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps a terrorist group in the late summer of 2007.

Quote: “Iran, incidentally, may have noticed a pattern: if countries do have a nuclear weapon, they tend to be left alone, or possibly even given a subsidy. If they do not gain such a weapon they find themselves threatened with war. With that kind of a foreign policy, what country wouldn’t want to pursue a nuclear weapon?”

Page 29: Neoconservatives were key supporters of the war in Iraq and lobbied hard for war with Iran. Despite the fact they were wrong about every prediction they made concerning the war in Iraq, they still exercise considerable influence in the media and with politicians. Those who support a non-interventionist foreign policy have gotten zero credit for making so many correct predictions about Iraq. There is a long history of non-interventionists in the Republican party. The “old-Right” was against big government at home as well as abroad.

Quote: “Every last prediction they made about the Iraq debacle-e.g., it would be a cakewalk, the cost would be paid for by oil revenues, the prospect of sectarian fighting was slim-has been resolutely falsified by events, and yet they continue to grace the pages of major American newspapers and appear regularly on cable television talk shows.”

Quote: “Non-interventionists have been entirely vindicated. And yet they do not enjoy the places of prominence that the establishment has bestowed on those who have been consistently wrong, and responsible for carnage and destruction that have destroyed our good name around the world and isolated us more than ever in our history.”

Quote: “The so-called old Right, or original Right, opposed Big Government at home and abroad and considered foreign interventionism to be the other side of the same statist coin as interventionism at home. They recognized that big government was no more honest or competent in foreign policy than it was in domestic policy. In both cases it was the same institution, with the same people, operating under the same incentives.”

Page 30: Felix Morely  founded Human Events, one of the oldest conservative periodicals in America. In an article written in 1957, Morley explains that there are dire consequences in trying to make a federal republic act like an empire. The institutions of a federal republic are designed to avoid the centralization of power. An empire needs centralized power to build its imperium. At some point the conflict must be resolved. Under an empire, individuals must relate their personal worth as an individual with the accomplishments of their country.

Quote (Felix Morley): “We are trying to make a federal republic do an imperial job, without honestly confronting the fact that our traditional institutions are specifically designed to prevent centralization of power….At some time and at some point, however, this fundamental conflict between our institutions and our policies will have to be resolved.”

Quote (Adolf Hitler): “A powerful national government may encroach considerably upon the liberty of  individuals as well as of the different States, and assume the responsibility for it, without weakening the Empire idea, if only every citizen recognizes such measures as means for making his nation greater.”

Quote (Felix Morley): “In other words, the problem of empire-building is essentially mystical. It must somehow foster the impression that a man is great in the degree that his nation is great; that a German as such is superior to a Belgian as such; an English-man, to an Irishman; an American, to a Mexican: merely because the first named countries are in each case more powerful than their comparatives. And people who have no individual stature whatsoever are willing to accept this poisonous nonsense because it gives them a sense of importance without the trouble of any personal effort.”

Page 31: Russell Kirk wrote the book The Conservative Mind. Kirk was one of the founders of the American Conservative movement and his book is one of the movement’s most influential books. Kirk was against the Vietnam war and excessive military spending. In the 1990s he spoke out against the foreign military interventions of the US government because he thought that they were creating unneeded enemies. Kirk believed that wars to spread democracy were futile and wasteful.

Quote (Russell Kirk): “Presidents Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Roosevelt, and Lyndon Johnson were enthusiasts for American domination of the world….now George [H.W.] Bush appears to be emulating those eminent Democrats….In general, Republicans throughout the twentieth century have been advocates of prudence and restraint in the conduct of foreign affairs.”

Quote (Russell Kirk): “Are we to saturation-bomb most of Africa and Asia into righteousness, freedom, and democracy? And, having accomplished that, however would we ensure persons yet more unrighteous might not rise up instead of the ogres we had swept away? Just that is what happened in the Congo, remember, three decades ago; and nowadays in Zaire, once called the Belgian Congo, we zealously uphold with American funds the dictator Mobutu, more blood-stained than Saddam.”

Page 32: Kirk also wrote a book called The Political Principles of Robert A. Taft. In the book Kirk points out Taft’s extreme dislike of war. Taft was not a pacifist but he saw war as endangering many of the rights and principles that Americans hold dear.

Quote (Russell Kirk): “War, Taft perceived, was the enemy of constitution, liberty, economic security, and the cake of custom….Though he was no theoretical pacifist, he insisted that every other possibility must be exhausted before resort to military action. War would make the American President a virtual dictator, diminish the constitutional powers of Congress, contract civil liberties, injure the habitual self-reliance and self-government of the American people, distort the economy, sink the federal government in debt, break in upon private and public morality….Taft’s prejudice in favor of peace was equaled in strength by his prejudice against empire. Quite as the Romans had acquired an empire in a fit of absence of mind, he feared that America might make herself an imperial power with the best of intentions-and the worst of results. He foresaw the grim possibility of  American garrisons in distant corners of the world, a vast permanent military establishment, an intolerant “democratism” imposed in the name of the American way of life, neglect of America’s domestic concerns in pursuit of transoceanic power, squandering of American resources upon amorphous international designs, the decay of liberty at home in proportion as America presumed to govern the world: that is, the ‘garrison state’, a term he employed more than once. The record of the United States as a administrator of territories overseas had not been heartening, and the American constitution made no provision for a widespread and enduring imperial government. Aspiring to redeem the world from all the ills to which flesh is heir, Americans might descend, instead, into a leaden imperial domination and corruption.”

Page 33: Richard Weaver is another very influential conservative thinker. His most well-known book is Ideas Have Consequences. Weaver was against the atomic bombing of Japan and strongly disliked Theodore Roosevelt for his habit of trying to intimidate other countries. Weaver wrote about the immorality of total war. Robert Nibset is another conservative scholar who spoke out against the sociological dangers inherent in war. George Nash, in his book The Conservative Intellectual Movement in America Since 1945, identifies Russell Kirk, Richard Weaver, and Robert Nibset as the leading traditional conservative thinkers. All three had grave concerns about an interventionist foreign policy.

Quote (Richard Weaver): “Of the many things which cause us to feel that spirit indispensable to civilization has been weekend, none should arouse deeper alarm than total war.”

Quote: “The conservative sociologist Robert Nibset reminded his audience that war was revolutionary, not conservative. He likewise warned that socialist proposals have often, under wartime conditions, become the law of the land.”

Quote: “That means the three most significant traditional conservative intellectuals in the postwar period were all wary of militarism to one degree or another.”

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One Response to Ron Paul – The Revolution: A Manifesto – Page 26 through Page 33

  1. Dan Pearson says:

    disipline to stay at this is commendable. the postings are very insightful.
    Dan

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