Part 1 – Foreign Policy
The problem with my crazy uncle is that he, actually, isn’t crazy at all.
He gets a lot of criticism from the MSM, his coworkers and the general population for a host of things, but I think first and foremost is his clear polar-opposite ideals concerning foreign policy. I think there is a plethora of disinformation, political opposition, ignorance and just plain confusion, propagated and perpetuated largely by the media and the American people’s penchant for believing everything they see and hear on TV regarding his views.
I understand where the confusion comes from, but at the same time I do not understand where the confusion comes from. Let’s look at it from a completely objective perspective. Let’s just pretend for a brief moment that I do not support Dr. Paul, but I am trying to determine if he really is off-base with his positions. I have heard a lot about this guy running for president and I want to see what his deal is.
So what exactly is/are his foreign policy position(s)?
- We do not give aid to any foreign nation unless the people have given their approval and the house has voted for it. (Natural disasters, Humanitarian efforts)
- We refrain from intervening in the day to day business of foreign governments.
- We refrain from intervening in wars, whether they are internal of external, unless those wars directly affect American interests, or the safety and security of the American people.
- We do not go to war unless attacked; waging only just wars and not wars of aggression.
- We do not go to war unless we follow the law of our land and declare the war.
- We outline a specific set of goals and parameters that we hope to achieve via military action.
- We establish a set of accomplishments that will allow us to determine if and when victory has been achieved.
- We do not rebuild those nations we have made war upon.
- We do not rebuild nations that our allies have made war upon.
- We do not build any nation other than our own, especially through means of violence, coercion or bribery.
- We come home after we achieve victory.
Those 11 points are very cut, dried and simplistic in view. Objectively, I would even say that they are akin to the “Golden Rule”.
We have rules, policies and laws regarding bullying in schools, but yet it seems we are completely apathetic with respect to bullying internationally. If you walk around punching and kicking people just because they disagree with you, sooner or later you will find yourself back into a corner by a very angry mob. In simplistic; it’s the law of nature and that’s just the way it is.
On the surface, I am starting to think that Ron Paul is actually not all that crazy after all. His foreign policy stances are, in fact, reasonable and logical. But, I am still not convinced that I can vote for the guy…after all, the MSM seems to have it out for him. I want to look at each point a little closer and maybe ask a few reasonable questions about each one.
We do not give aid to any foreign nation unless the people have given their approval and the house has voted for it. (Natural disasters, Humanitarian efforts)
Ok, I get that. I think America and her people have enough troubles at home, fiscally and morally, and we have a greater need to keep as much money as we can here in the states. It stands to reason that if we stop sending billions to other countries, that we may even be able to pay down the debt, or lower taxes. Both of those are good, in my opinion.
However, I don’t want to cause any problems with struggling nations that need this money to stave off terrorists and dictatorships.
I am trying to justify this rationality, but I have read more than a few articles and consumed information from other sources that are at odds with this logic. We gave the Pakistani government money and they were harboring Osama! We gave Egypt money and now look at them. We gave Libya money and look at them too. The list goes on and it seems the deeper I dig, the more the case for foreign aid becomes a fallacy.
I am also finding out that the money we give to these governments rarely makes it down to the people. So the humanitarian argument has to be thrown out. So I guess, after all, we probably shouldn’t be taxing the American people to send money to foreign governments, because in the end, it doesn’t do any good. I mean if we gave one billion to a nation of 300 million, they should each receive something like three thousand dollars, but I don’t think they do. It seems to me like the government is keeping it and doing something other than helping its people.
Hell, I’d like to have that three thousand, that’s ¾ of my sons’ yearly tuition.
We refrain from intervening in the day to day business of foreign governments.
Well yeah, I can’t see how any rational, logical, thinking or responsible person would disagree with this. I don’t think we would like it if Russia said we couldn’t build TV’s because China needs the work and money. I think we would tell Russia to take a walk.
We refrain from intervening in wars, whether they are internal of external, unless those wars directly affect American interests, or the safety and security of the American people.
This one is also pretty reasonable and logical. If they haven’t bombed us or our property in their or any other country, we should let them sort out their own affairs. I mean, if I see two men fighting in the street, I’m not going to go and break it up. Why would I? I don’t know why they are fighting and quite frankly, it’s none of my business. They’re grown men, it’s their business. As long as they don’t get too close to my property or family, I have no interest in it, other than entertainment.
We do not go to war unless attacked; waging only just wars and not wars of aggression.
Again, from a rational, logical perspective, I see no issue with this. I’m an adult and as an adult I understand the concept of self defense versus aggression and offense.
If some stranger walked up to me and said, “Hey, I think I might want to punch you in the face.” I wouldn’t automatically punch him in his face, just to prevent him from punching me in my face. That’s kind of dumb.
I might say something to the effect of; I have no issue with him and ask why he’d want to punch me. Then I’d tell him that it would not be the smartest thing to do on his part. I would try to understand his problem and get out of the situation, if possible. If not, I would ask him if he wants to go home, or to the hospital.
It’s kind of stupid to think that it’s okay to punch a guy because he threw some words at me. I would like to think that I’m better than that and that I have better control of my emotions. It’s one thing to throw words, but throwing punches is another issue.
We do not go to war unless we follow the law of our land and declare the war.
Well, yeah I get this one too. After all, we are supposed to be a nation of laws and the supreme law of the land states that the congress, and only the congress, has the power to declare wars. It’s kind of silly to argue that we couldn’t declare the war because it would take too long, or that we had to wait until the congress was back in session. No, actually we have provision for that. Congress can be called back for emergencies and in this day and age of technology and instant gratification, they could have a declaration typed up and ready for a vote in an hour.
The other argument, that a declaration is not needed is also a bit silly and ridiculous. The president can authorize military action in an emergency, but beyond that he has no power to declare and wage war. The war needs to be declared so everyone knows what enemy we are fighting and why. That’s fairly simple.
We outline a specific set of goals and parameters that we hope to achieve via military action.
Duh. Who doesn’t like goals? There is nothing wrong with setting goals. They help to keep the action on task and serve as morale boosting milestones. I think everyone on earth has at least one goal.
We establish a set of accomplishments that will allow us to determine if and when victory has been achieved.
Yes, again with the goals. I mean, seriously, how could we possibly tell if we have won, if we don’t even know what we are fighting for? We knew we had to kill Hitler. We knew we had to depose or kill the emperor. Kill the army to get to the leaders…simple, yet effective.
What was the purpose of the Korean War?
Look at Vietnam; why the hell were we there? What were we supposed to do? What kind of victory were we looking for?
I don’t even want to talk about the fiascos in the Middle East. Talk about a clear as mud set of goals and mission objectives. Kill all terrorists. Yes, that’s awesome! Umm…who exactly are the terrorists then?
We do not rebuild those nations we have made war upon.
We do not rebuild nations that our allies have made war upon.
We do not build any nation other than our own through means of violence, coercion or bribery.
We can lump all these together into the same category, because, in reality, they are all the same category.
Looking at this from a layman’s perspective, from a guy that has no college education and from a guy that has only recently (last few years) started looking into this stuff, the idea of foreign nation building, is completely ridiculous, immoral, asinine, insulting, degrading, tyrannical, stupid, wasteful of lives, time and money and to put it simply, a fucking farce.
We have roads, bridges, schools, and buildings falling apart here.
We have thousands upon thousands of homeless people here.
We have families that are struggling to make ends meet here.
We have children that are born into and perpetuate poverty here.
We have people starving and eating out of trash cans here.
This sad, pathetic list goes on and on…
The daily cost of the Iraq war is around 720 million dollars. Let’s assume that a small fraction of that daily money is for the rebuilding of that nation’s infrastructure- 20 million.
For twenty million dollars we could pay the mortgages on one hundred, 200 thousand dollar homes – every day! Now multiply that by 30, now by 365. We could rebuild one bridge, fix countless roads, build new schools and hire more teachers and so many other things here, in America.
What really makes me sick and pisses me off about this whole nation-building fiasco is this: We invade countries for whatever reason, then we bomb the hell out of them and destroy their infrastructure, then we borrow money from the Federal Reserve, the taxpayers and China to pay private companies hundreds of millions of dollars to rebuild the shit that we blew up….in another country!
Me thinks we should just stop blowing shit up and start taking care of America and Americans. Rebuild this nation first.
We come home after we achieve victory.
Hell yes we should come home. Why would we keep them their? We have already completed all mission objectives. We have smashed the enemy and their ability to make war. We have waged war unequivocally and set an example of our might and dedication. We don’t need to waste our soldier’s time by keeping them in-country. They have already won and they deserve some rest, relaxation and time with their friends and families.
Let’s let them cool off over there for a month or so, and then let’s bring them home to cool off for another month, and then they can go on their merry way with the gratitude and respect of the American people for a job well done.
Keeping them around for years to “keep the peace” and “protect American interests” is a pile of malarkey. What interest should we have in a country that has attacked us and has been destroyed in retaliation? Should we build an embassy there? Hell no, if they want to be friends again let them take the first step and build the embassy for us.
To be completely honest, I would feel much safer knowing there were a couple hundred thousand trained soldiers walking around the cities and towns of America.
I have a few soldiers in my group of friends and family. Some of them are older and some of them are around my age, but all of them seem to agree on one thing, “I did my job, now I want to go home and see my family. I want a hamburger and French fries.” I think they have earned it.
After looking at all this, asking myself question after question and trying to find a reasonable and logical example – any example or reason for that matter – to be at odds with Ron Paul’s foreign policy…I just can’t. I mean I really can’t do it. It just makes sense to me and I think when you look at all the questions, then answer them truthfully with fact based arguments, you really won’t have any reason to not support them either.
So, in summation, my “crazy uncle Ron”, gets my vote on foreign policy as I just cannot rationalize any other perspective.