Quotes of the day

posted at 8:01 pm on March 17, 2013 by Allahpundit

There was one clear superstar at the Conservative Political Action Conference: Rand Paul.

The Kentucky senator roared into the event with big momentum from his filibuster on drones and followed up with a speech that seemed to broaden his support beyond the libertarian set. “Stand with Rand” was the event’s unofficial slogan, and attendees did so by making him the winner of the presidential straw poll.

***

But among the thousands of activists here for the three-day confab, last year’s losses seem to be far in the past. And the advent of young pols like Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul — make that especially Rand Paul — has energized conservatives here about the future of the movement.

Like in past years, the CPAC congregation tilts young and libertarian; college Republicans are well represented. Before, former Texas Rep. Ron Paul was a crowd favorite. Now that affection is being showered on his son and prospective 2016 contender, Rand…

“Americans are craving conviction and they’re craving someone that will stand up for principle,” said R.J. Robinson, 32, as he handed out flyers in the main hall. “And Rand Paul gave that to them.”…

“I’ve been very surprised, actually,” said Dan Whitfield, 30, a writer who lives in D.C. “I wasn’t really looking forward to CPAC this year, I really wasn’t, but I think the turning point was Rand’s speech.”

***

It’s rather common to find college-age attendees at CPAC offering full-throated support for either the decriminalization or legalization of marijuana (lots of sly smirks when asked, but no one would admit to smoking pot, except for some of those rock-ribbed libertarian attendees). And despite the focus on the exclusion of the gay conservative group GOProud, I had a difficult time finding young conservatives who believed gay Republicans should be excluded from the conference.

Indeed, the libertarian crowd has been increasingly vocal at Obama-era CPACs—Ron Paul has routinely won the annual straw poll—but this year, the Rand Paul Brigades look something like an occupying force. Everywhere one turns, there are “Stand With Rand” signs, stickers, and T-shirts (a volunteer told me he had handed out a thousand shirts in just over two hours). In the rush to see the Kentucky senator’s speech, one Paul supporter thrust a “Stand With Rand” placard into a young conservative’s hands. He resisted, offering a sheepish apology: “Sorry, I’m not a libertarian.” The sign hustler also apologized: “Oh, sorry, it’s just that so many people here are.”…

One can debate how representative CPAC is of the conservative movement as a whole, but the libertarian and social conservative wings of the party are eyeing each other warily, with the traditionalists reacting as if they are surrounded.

***

In the end, the junior senator from Kentucky and his ilk claim to have risen in defense of the Fifth Amendment, but instead they’ve given the rest of us a glimpse into the bizarre world many Libertarians inhabit.

It’s a world where conspiracy theories abound, Federal Reserve bankers are on par with al-Qaeda, and the president is an Orwellian Big Brother — the sort of stuff that attracts a rather odd bunch. For as the Wall Street Journal fittingly suggests, “if Mr. Paul wants to be taken seriously he needs to do more than pull political stunts that fire up impressionable Libertarian kids in their college dorms.”

I witnessed these kids in action at the 2011 Conservative Political Action Conference when I accompanied my former boss Donald Rumsfeld, who received the Defender of the Constitution award from his friend, Dick Cheney. A gaggle of Libertarian Paulites behaved as if they were at a professional wrestling bout and shouted obscenities at the two men — some were moved to call them “war criminals.”…

Rand and Ron don’t seem to understand the significance of the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of Communism. The moment American Airlines flight 11 plunged into the North Tower of the World Trade Center, it was made tragically clear that warfare will likely never again be about superpower versus superpower or nation state versus nation state. Warfare is now asymmetric, where non-state actors carry out acts of war in a global battlefield.

***

In his National Review interview, Senator Paul rightly faulted the 2012 GOP ticket for banking on the fallacy that victory lay in allowing no daylight between its own positions and Obama’s abominable foreign policy. But his critique then skipped the rails. The Romney/Ryan platform, he complained, “was sort of like, ‘We’ll . . . come a little bit slower out of Afghanistan. . . . ’ But Biden had a good response, ‘We’re coming home.’ And I think that’s what people want; I think that’s what people are ready for, that we’re coming home.” And why does Paul think Americans want to come home? Because of “war weariness.”

Americans are clearly not pining for our troops to come home from Europe, Japan, Korea, the Persian Gulf, or other locations where their presence assures the peace through strength on which our prosperity depends. In Afghanistan, Americans are not weary of war; they are weary — as they were in Iraq — of our government’s misconception of the war, the very thing Paul’s Heritage speech undertook to correct. They are weary of expending the lives and limbs of our best young people — and of wasting hundreds of billions of dollars in a time of existentially threatening debt — on nation-building experiments premised on the fiction that Islamic and Western cultures desire the same things.

Like Senator Paul, Americans are not anxious for war. But when it is necessary and fought for our vital interests — particularly our liberty and security — we are extremely supportive.

***

The names [Paul] had in mind were of course those of John McCain and Lindsey Graham. Those spokesmen for “the GOP of old” had the bad form to call out Rand Paul after he took to the Senate floor to speculate glibly about American presidents and American military and intelligence officers calling in unprovoked domestic drone strikes against innocent Americans. McCain and Graham, advocates of what Paul calls an “aggressive” foreign policy—i.e., the foreign policy of the Republican party for the last 70 years—also challenged Paul’s general foreign policy prescription.

What does Dr. Paul prescribe? In an interview last week, Paul appealed to the wisdom of Vice President Joe Biden. In the 2012 vice presidential debate, Paul said, Biden had a good response to Paul Ryan on Afghanistan: “We’re coming home.” And, Paul continued, “I think that’s what people want. I think that’s what people are ready for, that we’re coming home.” And why does Paul think the American people are now ready for this McGovernite message? “War weariness.”…

That task of Republicans is to confront Obama on his irresponsibility, not compete with him. The task of a serious opposition party is to rally the nation to its responsibilities and long-term interests. The task of GOP political leaders is to educate the public about the dangers of the world and to inspire people to rise above their weariness. The task of American conservatives is not to let an understandable Obama-weariness turn into weariness in fighting the nation’s enemies or in supporting our troops in the field.

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Click the image to watch.

mk


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Marmalade:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kGl74GPhPD4

Just happened across this song, haven’t heard it in years!!

Hope you all enjoy it :-)

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 1:20 AM

bluefox on March 18, 2013 at 12:38 AM

Yes, I read that, it however doesn’t really apply to Rove, who donates nearly half of his politically involved time.

SWalker on March 18, 2013 at 12:45 AM

He donates his time, is that what you are saying? Works for free?

bluefox on March 18, 2013 at 1:22 AM

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 1:18 AM

Actually, I’m shore fishing areas where the ice is partially out. As the ice goes out, the fish congregate under the ice near shore. Depending on the weather, it can be a few days to a couple of weeks of great fishing, and not many people are out doing it. Too cold and too much work.

novaculus on March 18, 2013 at 1:22 AM

Here’s another thing I’ve noticed about a lot of neocon politicians, they tend to ardently support amnesty for illegal aliens, something that is harmful to the country and to the political viability of their own party, yet they support anyway. They don’t simply support it, in fact it’s one of the only things that actually animates them and they are willing to dedicate so much “bi-partisan” energy toward. This in spite of the fact that it is so harmful to the nation and only benefits the cronies that all the despicable lobbyists represent. If instead these neocon RINO’s expended half as much effort on Americas’ very real problems we wouldn’t be in such dire straights. But no, those issues aren’t very important at all to them, they only seem to care about serving their crony masters.

FloatingRock on March 18, 2013 at 1:19 AM

McCain, Graham and Rubio – The Axis of Weasels.

VorDaj on March 18, 2013 at 1:27 AM

To eat a sandwich that cannot fight back is not cowardly.

To formally offer a sandwich the opportunity to draw a weapon and defend itself is not noble.

To eat a sandwich having spent no time weighing the eating of sandwiches is not obdurate.

To eat a sandwich having never considered the sandwich’s feelings is not callous or selfish.

— because it’s a sandwich.

*draws big circle with a stick*

You should probably just eat the sandwich.

Selah.

*stands in circle*

I’m just saying. Don’t over-think it.

*mega-poof*

Axe on March 18, 2013 at 1:27 AM

Tracks of My Tears – Smokey Robinson and the Miracles

How’s this one, Dire? I don’t know about ‘better’ but its definitely a good one. :)

thatsafactjack on March 18, 2013 at 1:27 AM

Axe on March 18, 2013 at 1:27 AM

Goodnight, Axefellow. Sleep well. See you soon. :)

thatsafactjack on March 18, 2013 at 1:29 AM

novaculus on March 18, 2013 at 1:22 AM

Oh yeah, on real frigid days here in OK, I know what you mean!!

Too cold and not many folk out bearing it!!

Good Luck! Hope you catch many!!

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 1:29 AM

Palin CPAC

SparkPlug on March 18, 2013 at 1:29 AM

Axe on March 18, 2013 at 1:27 AM

Brilliant as usual!!

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 1:29 AM

Have You Seen Her – Chi- Lites

thatsafactjack on March 18, 2013 at 1:30 AM

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 1:29 AM

MG gave us a land cruiser to cruise around the Glade in Style. Hopp on your Broom I’ll meet you at the big clearing next to the thick underbrush by the sparse underbrush near the small clearing.

SparkPlug on March 18, 2013 at 1:30 AM

SparkPlug on March 18, 2013 at 1:29 AM

For sure for sure!!

I don’t give a fig what the stupid straw poll says…

She is ace in my book!

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 1:30 AM

SparkPlug on March 18, 2013 at 1:30 AM

On my way! ;-D

*swoosh*

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 1:31 AM

Axe on March 18, 2013 at 1:27 AM

Hey I jut got here. Its a bad omen to leave like that. It could cause a jinx and a foreboding hex. And that would be a harbinger of ill fate.

SparkPlug on March 18, 2013 at 1:32 AM

I driving on over to the Palin CPAC thread. Be right back.

SparkPlug on March 18, 2013 at 1:34 AM

Be My Baby – Ronettes

thatsafactjack on March 18, 2013 at 1:36 AM

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 1:29 AM

I love that old Marmalade tune.

Yesterday we had deep-fried filet of fresh crappie with American fries for dinner. Today I made corned beef with cabbage and boiled red potatoes, but today’s fish will be eaten in a day or two. If I make a big catch, I’ll freeze some. I probably take about 90% of the fish I put in the freezer for the year between now and Memorial Day.

novaculus on March 18, 2013 at 1:37 AM

thatsafactjack on March 18, 2013 at 1:27 AM

You are correct..Very nice comeback..There are so many..:)

Dire Straits on March 18, 2013 at 1:37 AM

SWalker, please tell Axe that a mega poof can put a kabotski on all future poofs if you don’t watch it.

A kabotski is the precursor to a full-on jinx.

*back away slowly*

Hi MG.

SparkPlug on March 18, 2013 at 1:38 AM

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 1:26 AM

Very nice..:)

Dire Straits on March 18, 2013 at 1:39 AM

Stop In The Name Of Love – Supremes

The Ronettes were arguably the preeminent ‘girl’ group until the Supremes came out of Motown and knocked them off the charts.

thatsafactjack on March 18, 2013 at 1:40 AM

McCain, Graham and Rubio – The Axis of Weasels.

VorDaj on March 18, 2013 at 1:27 AM

Heh. Catchy little put-down has some potential. I may have to find a spot to spread that on Twitter. With credit, of course.

novaculus on March 18, 2013 at 1:40 AM

thatsafactjack on March 18, 2013 at 1:30 AM

Very smooth..:):)

Dire Straits on March 18, 2013 at 1:40 AM

SparkPlug on March 18, 2013 at 1:38 AM

Good evening, Spark. :)

thatsafactjack on March 18, 2013 at 1:40 AM

novaculus on March 18, 2013 at 1:37 AM

Yeah thanks!! Marmalade was a good band back in the day…

I lucked out and caught me some nice trout, rainbow, they stock them when the weather is cold in a creek at Medicine Park…

They average a couple lbs… was good eating!!

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 1:40 AM

Dire Straits on March 18, 2013 at 1:39 AM

Thanks! I don’t remember if he was ‘motown’ or not, but always loved that song…

Not too many songs I don’t really!

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 1:43 AM

thatsafactjack on March 18, 2013 at 1:40 AM

We sure miss our pals Scrumps and Axe when they are gone. Don’t we.

Hi B9 and Grace.

SparkPlug on March 18, 2013 at 1:43 AM

SparkPlug on March 18, 2013 at 1:43 AM

Yes, we certainly do, Spark. It’s so nice to have them back. :)

thatsafactjack on March 18, 2013 at 1:45 AM

Thanks for the ride in the cruiser Sparky!! Exhilaratin’!

My hair is a frazzle now!

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 1:46 AM

Dire Straits on March 18, 2013 at 1:40 AM

Yes… always liked that tune. :)

thatsafactjack on March 18, 2013 at 1:46 AM

Ohhhhhhhhhhhh am watching The Bible the episode where the devil is tempting Christ… the resemblance to someone we know is eerie!!!!

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 1:48 AM

No Where To Run To – Martha and the Vandellas

thatsafactjack on March 18, 2013 at 1:51 AM

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 1:40 AM

The state does some trout stockings here too. I’ve done it a couple of times. The trout are great sport and good eating, but talk about combat fishing!

The wipers are hybrids of white bass and striped bass that are stocked. They have a very low rate of reproduction, so they have to be stocked repeatedly. But they grow fast and prey on some problem fish in the food chain, and they are as tough as small mouth. They like to make runs when they fight. When you get on on your ultra lite crappie rig, you better have your drag set right or they will break you right off. If its set right you have a chance, but it will be a fight. Great fun.

novaculus on March 18, 2013 at 1:53 AM

Why Worry – Dire Straits

I bid you all a fond goodnight. It’s been a pleasure, as always. See you soon.

thatsafactjack on March 18, 2013 at 1:59 AM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o0B5vuAYk94

Gotta give these guys props!!

I just am nuts about ‘em!!

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 1:59 AM

thatsafactjack on March 18, 2013 at 1:59 AM

God Bless and good night Sweet Lady!!

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 2:00 AM

G’night Jackie. Enjoyed the tunes, as always.

novaculus on March 18, 2013 at 2:01 AM

bluefox on March 18, 2013 at 12:38 AM

Yes, I read that, it however doesn’t really apply to Rove, who donates nearly half of his politically involved time.

SWalker on March 18, 2013 at 12:45 AM

He donates his time, is that what you are saying? Works for free?

bluefox on March 18, 2013 at 1:22 AM

His time and his money. If you read my article you know that I do not like Karl Rove, despise him is more accurate in fact. But I do not make up lies about people that I do not like, nor do I willingly and knowingly propagate those lies.

Karl Rove is many things, many of them bad. One of those things he is, is a true believer in the political process. Pat Caddell is one of the few Democrats whose opinion I think has value, not to say that I 100 percent trust him but I do not believe that Karl Rove was one of the people Pat was speaking about.

I gave my reasons in that article for why I despise Rove and you may have noticed that they are not exactly the same as most of my fellow conservatives. I also explained that I am neither a partisan nor a bandwagon jumper. I do not despise Rove because other conservatives do.

SWalker on March 18, 2013 at 2:03 AM

novaculus on March 18, 2013 at 1:53 AM

I don’t get to go fish very often and just use a light rig… But you right about the trout!

A good sport fish!

I use a Shakespeare Ugly Lite Pro Spinning Combo, and various lures that work!

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 2:05 AM

Well folks as much fun as this has been, I need to get myself to bed and sleep!!

God Bless you each and every one!!

I shall leave you with this classic song!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8cwcZMgVtM0

Sweet Dreams!!

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 2:08 AM

{{HUGS}}

*swoosh*

Scrumpy on March 18, 2013 at 2:08 AM

thatsafactjack on March 18, 2013 at 1:51 AM

Excellent tune..:)

Dire Straits on March 18, 2013 at 2:11 AM

G’night Scrumpy.

Signing off myself. G’night all.

Canon In D Major

novaculus on March 18, 2013 at 2:13 AM

Good morning, Detroit!

Rusty Allen on March 18, 2013 at 3:32 AM

Note to the stodgy, old, out of touch, elitist GOP. All it took was for a man of character to just stand up and say no. You ought to try it on your way to oblivion. Maybe you can postpone your demise for a while longer.

PS The other side is not America’s friend. Start dealing with them for the enemy of freedom they are.

Don L on March 18, 2013 at 6:33 AM

Don L on March 18, 2013 at 6:33 AM
Exactly.
My take.

kingsjester on March 18, 2013 at 6:43 AM

good morning Don and KJ and the rest of the HA morning crew :)

cmsinaz on March 18, 2013 at 6:45 AM

excellent take once again KJ

read it folks!
_________________
woke up to the morning joe crew trashing palin and the rest of the cpac speakers, natch

cmsinaz on March 18, 2013 at 6:47 AM

cmsinaz on March 18, 2013 at 6:47 AM

Thank you, my friend!

Scarborough…charter member of the Vichy Republicans.

kingsjester on March 18, 2013 at 7:00 AM

cmsinaz on March 18, 2013 at 6:47 AM

Mika’s head looks like its about to explode after they showed a clip of Sarah taking a sip of Big Gulp.

renalin on March 18, 2013 at 7:03 AM

kingsjester on March 18, 2013 at 7:00 AM

oh yeah

mika not digging the cuda big gulp

love it!!!!

cmsinaz on March 18, 2013 at 7:03 AM

Rand and Ron don’t seem to understand the significance of the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of Communism. The moment American Airlines flight 11 plunged into the North Tower of the World Trade Center, it was made tragically clear that warfare will likely never again be about superpower versus superpower or nation state versus nation state. Warfare is now asymmetric, where non-state actors carry out acts of war in a global battlefield.

I think that they process that fully and understand that the forces of the Nation State have a limited role to play, while a crucial one for long term effectiveness these forces cannot be committed to a fight of forever. They can only be used on a fight of eradication but to do that requires the weeding out of the global terror systems on an asymmetric basis not just via military means but via commercial and civil means as well. That requires using the older paradigms of the Piracy Codes and going after groups and individuals via sanctioning of Americans who want to take them down where they can least afford to expend resources: getting goods to stay alive, train and supply new fighters.

That old way of doing things can now be put into the modern world of accountability so that rogue actors don’t decide to go Pirate as their goods, assets and so forth are tied up in the permitting Nation State. Take that list of international terrorists and terror groups the State Dept. generates and have Congress weigh in with their powers that these are Private Enemies of the Nation, indeed of all Nations, and put forward a way for citizens and citizen organizations to start going after not just the personnel but their supplies, their helpers in the commercial world and those who give them active aid and shelter. The world can be duly put on notice that helping these groups and individuals has a cost to it in the seizure of not just goods but the transporting vehicles for them, and the rendition of those helpers to the US for prosecution under the Piracy Codes.

Liberty as the Classical, post-Westphalian concept grew up in an era of global war by small groups able to act independently or in concert without the backing of Nations to wage war for their own ends. Those ends were not limited to mere capture of goods but the enslavement of individuals for profit and even the taking over of some towns, cities and small Nations. The Progressives and their ilk are not prepared to cede that personal liberty and freedom under sanction to go after our Private Enemies is the way to combat them… yet these asymmetrical enemies cannot be fought by the large, lumbering Nation State that cannot react well, swiftly and with precision beyond those lovely little drone attacks that do nothing to organizations and only kill people. The drones aren’t working, in case it has been missed, and new followers fill the smoking shoes of old, killed commanders in jihadi and terror ranks. Even worse is that new blood brings new approaches so as we weed out the older, known idiots a fresh batch of idiots who are learning from the mistakes of the dead are now coming forward, making for a much harder and more intractable problem.

It ain’t working the 20th century way, so why not try the 18th century way? You have nothing to lose but your freedom and liberty in search of ephemeral security if you don’t, and a more civil world to gain if you do. A number of Libertarians understand this… the elite intellectuals fear an empowered American citizenry able to go after their enemies. I know which side sounds much better to me, and it isn’t on the side that thinks drone are the panacea, that’s for sure. And soon they will become known as flying targets. That day is coming. Then you are back to either believing the Nation can do it all or that the people who make up a free Nation are the ones who must figure out what must be done. Your choice. The clock is ticking. Liberty or State impressed security which never works? Better think fast, the days are growing short on Liberty.

ajacksonian on March 18, 2013 at 7:05 AM

mika not digging the cuda big gulp

love it!!!!

cmsinaz on March 18, 2013 at 7:03 AM

I put Mika’s views right up there with the column Dana Milbank wrote for yesterday’s WaPo. Worthless.

Liberals lecturing conservatives about what they should do simply makes no sense because they lack any sort of integrity and really hate anybody that doesn’t hold their world view.

Happy Nomad on March 18, 2013 at 7:52 AM

“I think that they process that fully and understand that the forces of the Nation State have a limited role to play, while a crucial one for long term effectiveness these forces cannot be committed to a fight of forever. They can only be used on a fight of eradication but to do that requires the weeding out of the global terror systems on an asymmetric basis not just via military means but via commercial and civil means as well. That requires using the older paradigms of the Piracy Codes and going after groups and individuals via sanctioning of Americans who want to take them down where they can least afford to expend resources: getting goods to stay alive, train and supply new fighters…

The clock is ticking. Liberty or State impressed security which never works? Better think fast, the days are growing short on Liberty.”

ajacksonian on March 18, 2013 at 7:05 AM

Piracy codes. Right.

Prediction: If Rand Paul fails to win the 2016 GOP primary nomination–a strong likelihood given Rand Paul’s paternal baggage and a very competitive candidate field–Libertarians who call themselves Republicans will either vote for the Libertarian Party candidate, splitting the vote, or stay home and encourage others to do the same, causing the GOP to lose crucial (and close) swing states, either way more or less handing the presidency to the Democratic candidate, who will probably be Hillary Clinton.

How do I know this? Because that’s what Libertarians did last time. That’s what they do every time.

Here’s a thought: why don’t you ‘big L’ Libertarians go plague the Democrats for awhile? I understand the Democrats are all about legal weed and incoherent foreign policy ideas. Many of them might even agree with your views on Jewish bankers and government mind control via water fluoridation.

troyriser_gopftw on March 18, 2013 at 11:57 AM

It wasn’t Iraq and Afghanistan that attacked us on 9/11, if any two nations were responsible it was Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, our so-called friends and allies. The War on Terror was a sham designed to create the appearance that we were fighting our enemies when in fact our biggest enemies were elsewhere

It was Al Quaeda that attacked us, and Al Quaeda was hosted by the Taliban, who controlled Afghanistan. So kicking the Taliban out of Afghanistan was, in fact, both the right thing to do and a healthy foreign policy.

And in case you haven’t noticed, it wasn’t the neocons who wanted to do a surge to Afghanistan and start nation building. For all your criticism of the Iraq war, nation building actually made a certain amount of sense in that nation. Unlike Afghanistan, Iraq actually is not quite a basket case, and has some real hope of becoming a decent nation. At least, compared to the rest of the Middle East.

So contrary to your oversimplifications:

a) The neocons had a valid reason to go into Afghanistan
b) The neocons were not stupid enough to waste time with a lot of nation building in Afghanistan. That brilliant notion can be laid directly at the feet of Obama and the Democrats, who loved to call Afghanistan the “Good War.”
c) The neocons were successful in their nation building in Iraq. That’s no guarantee that the future is bright for Iraq. It is still the Middle East, and neighbors like Iran, Saudi Arabia, Syria, and Afghanistan would be enough of a problem if Iraq was a paradise on earth, which it’s not.
d) While it’s certainly true that Saudi Arabia and Pakistan bear a lot of blame, the governments are smart enough to keep a little distance between themselves and their radical elements that are actually helping out the terrorists. And not without a certain amount of credibility, because Pakistan, for example, doesn’t have much control of nearly half of its own nation. No matter how much you or others mutter about them being the “real problem,” there is no political will to attack nations that are nominally at peace with us. I certainly think I could justify leaning hard on Pakistan to either get control of the western half of its nation or get blamed for everything they do. But the uproar against going into Iraq would be nothing compared to the firestorm that would erupt if we jumped on Pakistan without absolutely solid proof that they were directly — and I emphasize, directly — behind terrorist attacks.

My biggest single problem with the isolationists is not that they criticize the “neocons,” but that they act like withdrawing to our own borders will magically fix everything.

It’s the Middle East. It’s a hellhole. It would be foolish to try to fix it, but it would be just as foolish to pretend we can ignore it. No matter how much we may dislike the past of covert intervention to set up friendly dictators, it was at least a creditable attempt to keep the ghetto somewhat stabilized. And there was exactly one reason to try to keep it stable: so we didn’t have to send in a bunch of people to stabilize it.

Now if you really want to see a foreign policy disaster, it’s happening right now. The Obama administration has destabilized half the Middle East, and virtually guaranteed we will have to send even more troops into the Middle East in the future. Because they have found the one kind of warfare they can actually carry out against us and that we can’t just ignore, and that is terrorism.

Criticize the neocons, if you want. They were far too optimistic and naive in some ways. But let’s not pretend that the other answers are all that much better. The only sure way to solve these little terrorist tinpot nations is to step on them very, very hard when they get too big for their britches. And I seriously doubt the kind of action needed would ever get majority support in this country, unless one of these nations is stupid enough to try another 9/11 that can be traced back to them directly.

There Goes The Neighborhood on March 18, 2013 at 5:40 PM

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