Rockwell: Is the Libertarian Party Pro-War?

From an article on LewRockwell.com on April 10, 2011 by Lew Rockwell:

Murray Rothbard, who had opposed a libertarian political party, threw himself into the struggle when it was founded as a pro-war organization. Eventually, he succeeded in having the LP adopt the greatest platform on war and almost all other issues ever written. But those days, like the old platform, are long gone. Indeed, the LP is pro-war again, argues Karen Kwiatkowski in her open letter to LP chairman Mark Hinkle.

Read the original here.

116 thoughts on “Rockwell: Is the Libertarian Party Pro-War?

  1. Michael H. Wilson

    I don’t know. Maybe I am in the wrong political party, but I recall thinking after I got out of the service that the U.S. overseas military commitments were not financially sustainable. How can we afford to do that? Besides it is a subsidy to our international competition.

    Maybe I just need to leave.

  2. Marc Montoni

    Oh, you’re in the right party, Michael. I’m anti-war and I’m here too. So is Karen, and so are a lot of others.

    The US military is overextended, and eventually we’re going to get our clocks cleaned. Those who don’t understand this don’t understand noninterventionism, either.

  3. LibertarianGirl

    I recall believing there is no such thing as a pro-war Libertarian , then i got to know people better… sad
    its sad because , save Anti-War the left – ecsp after Obamas election- has dropped the anti-war ball. There is no big movement. I wanna see what we did in the 60’s and we havent.
    If the left wont do it , and we know the right wont , and we dont , then who?

  4. U.S. Military Does Not Subsidize Foreign Competition

    Besides [U.S. overseas military bases are] a subsidy to our international competition.

    Not really. Only money handouts subsidize foreign competition.

    U.S. military bases are a subsidy to U.S. corporations, but not to the host nations.

    I’m sure many host nations that we “protect” would like to “pay for their own defense” (i.e., buy weapons of their choice — nukes — and control those weapons) but we won’t let them.

    U.S. military bases in Iraq, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Germany, and Japan do not “protect” those nations — they are a gun pointed at that nation, should they ever “get out of hand.”

    This is why Israel won’t tolerate U.S. military bases on their soil. They’re smart enough — and their lobby is strong enough — to insist on money handouts, but no U.S. troops pointing guns at them.

  5. John Jay Myers

    There is no such thing as a pro-war Libertarian. That is definitely where my tent ends, at least as far as leadership goes.

    I am really disappointed about these articles coming out. They seem to be in regards to one specific person, yet we are all being thrown under the bus.

    If the Libertarian Party were pro-War I would against the Libertarian Party.

  6. Marc Montoni

    JJM there are a number of LP members (and leaders who have consistently claimed it’s OK to “fight them over there, before they come over here”.

    Occasionally these folks get into the top spots of leadership in the LP. It is those people to whom Kwiatkowski refers. She considers Root to be among them.

    I understand that his defenders feel he’s made a sea change in his position on the issue, and claim he’s no longer in favor of war or intervention.

    That may be, but some of us feel that the transformation has been mostly opportunistic and not genuine. Root bears most of the responsibility for that perception. Anyone with ambitions to lead the LP could have called up the Wikipedia article on the party, or viewed the platform, and seen the historical position of the LP has been — for almost three decades — noninterventionist and anti-war.

    If Root and his followers wanted blind acceptance of his leadership, they should have thought about remedying his views five or six years before deciding to “make over” the organization.

  7. John Jay Myers

    Marc I am totally with you but please provide me with a current “leader” who has come out with a message that it pro-war?

    Obviously there is Wayne, but at least he has pretended not to be pro-war and interventionist, lately.

    So I just don’t understand who they are referencing, they can’t let one guy be “The Libertarian Party” all of the people I know who have any high position in this party are anti-war and against interventionism.

    If not… LET THEM SPEAK NOW AND BE CAST OUT! (totally kidding…hence the caps)

  8. John Jay Myers

    I was doing some math on foreign aid, I know that Bill Maher likes to say foreign aid equals .7% of our budget, he is actually wrong. (who’d a thunk it)

    If you look at the proposed 2011 budget foreign aid makes up 3.3% of that.
    (but wait there is more)
    Let’s pretend we are only trying to balance the budget, then that means we just need to reduce the budget by around 1/3 (or) 33%.
    That means that foreign aid, is around 10% of the way to a balanced budget.

    So I disagree that it is “small potatoes” 10 of those potatoes, and we have a balanced budget.

  9. Israel Is America's Top Foreign Aid Recipient

    “Israel is small potatoes anymore as a beneficiary of US government aid”.

    If that were true, it should be real easy to end aid to Israel. And it isn’t. Root claims one can’t even discuss ending aid to Israel on American TV.

    As for Iraq, contrary to Marc’s link, Iraq doesn’t receive all that much U.S. aid. The money earmarked for Iraq goes straight to U.S. corporations. (The infamous “no-bid” contractors.)

    Israel is the largest foreign country beneficiary of U.S. aid. It’s the only nation/aid recipient that doesn’t even have to spend its aid money on U.S. goods. Israel lobbied — and got — an exemption, whereby it could spend the money on its own military industry.

  10. Michael H. Wilson

    #6 writes; U.S. military bases are a subsidy to U.S. corporations, but not to the host nations.Please explain your reasoning.

    I’m sure many host nations that we “protect” would like to “pay for their own defense” (i.e., buy weapons of their choice — nukes — and control those weapons) but we won’t let them. I have never hear or read of this being the case. Can you supply some info to support this comment?
    Thank you.

  11. JT

    Here are a just few thoughts I have about this:

    1) The pro-interventionist faction of the LP has always been a small one. The party has always been overwhelmingly non-interventionist.

    2) I don’t like the idea that one guy’s view is representative of the party. But I struggle with this as Root isn’t just an LP member who’s going on TV–he was voted as the vice presidential candidate of the party in 2008 and holds a leadership position in the party now.

    3) I don’t really understand how Root is classified as “rabidly pro-war” anyway. I’d like to know what Kwiatkowski is basing that on. He believes that America should support Israel. But at least since he joined the LP I haven’t heard him say he thinks war is good.

    4) She asks why the LP “lets” Wayne speak? Whether or not you agree with something he says, he can say whatever he wants on any website, radio, or TV show that will let him and identify himself as a Libertarian. The LP can’t stop him from doing that.

  12. Jill Pyeatt

    Michael at 1: You’re in the right party. Those of us who are rabidly anti-war simply need to speak louder, and more often. I’m certainly trying to do my part.

  13. Jill Pyeatt

    Challenge to all my anti-war friends: Please send me anything you find that’s anti-war written by a Libertarian, or any articles about Libertarian anti-war activities. I’ll post the articles here and/or on my FB page. We need to start getting the word out better.

  14. Eric Dondero

    The Libertarian Party was originally Pro-War, or at the least Pro-Defense during its founding in 1971 and through about 1974/75 when Rothbard and Raimondo and other black-arm ban wearing Anarchists took over the platform committee of the LP.

    Before that Dr. John Hospers, Darlene Brinks and other LP Founders were absolutely Anti-Communist and Pro-Military.

    The launching of the Libertarian Defense Caucus took place in about 1975 as a counter reaction to Rothbard/Raimondo.

    Only those of us who have been around the LP for a very long time – me since 1985 – remember accurate LP history.

  15. Eric Dondero

    AntiWar Libertarians would rather we fight the Islamists on the border between Matamoros and Brownsville, and Juarez and El Paso. Ranchers and Farmers who live in South Texas “be damned,” they say.

    It’s funny how most of the AntiWar faction of the Libertarian movement are Yankess who don’t live anywhere near the Border, places like Illinois, Wisconsin, ect…

  16. HumbleTravis

    The “Read the original here” link at the bottom of the excerpt above does not actually link to anywhere.

  17. Steve LaBianca

    There is no “Anti-War faction of the Libertarian movement” – there are libertarians, and there are war-mongers . . . never the two shall meet.

    NOTE: Such a characterization is like saying “pro-tax faction of the libertarian movement”.

    Ridiculous.

  18. Jill Pyeatt

    Humble, I couldn’t get it to open, either. I thought it was my slow computer…

  19. Steve LaBianca

    I think Kwiatkowski and Rockwell have a point – libertarians believe in and support defense (not necessarily “state run” defense).

    W.A.R. and his cronies are hell-bent on “re-defining” libertarianism, to include (among other things) pre-emptive war. That war mongers are in the LP is a fact – I’ve encountered many myself, but fundamentally, the NAP necessarily excludes these people from being libertarians, including W.A.R.

    This is politics though, and when a political organization has a decent infrastructure, there are “pigs at the trough” who want to get a hold of that, in the attempt to get a “seat at the table of power” . . . like W.A.R. Oh, and there’s just one MORE reason why W.A.R. and his conies aren’t libertarians – libertarians don’t strive to have power over anyone – other than their own lives.

  20. Steve LaBianca

    Marc Montoni said regarding W.A.R. (# 9 above) – “some of us feel that the transformation has been mostly opportunistic and not genuine”.

    Count me in as one of those “some”. W.A.R. is an opportunist only, and barely has a principled bone in his body. (I’m being kind).

  21. U.S. Military Does Not Subsidize Foreign Competition

    @ 14, it’s common sense.

    You really think those U.S. military bases in the Arab world are altruistically protecting those nations, rather than preventing governments from arising that’d be hostile to U.S. oil interests or to Israel?

    One of the first things the U.S. did after invading Afghanistan was to establish military bases around the oil pipelines.

    Look what happens whenever some Muslim nation wants to “pay for its own defense” (e.g., Iran, pre-invasion Iraq and Afghanistan). The U.S. rattles its saber and invades (or threatens to invade), so it can “protect” them with U.S. bases.

    The U.S. doesn’t want foreign nations to “pay for their own defense” if it means controlling their own defense.

    Sure, the U.S. would like for foreign government to subsidize U.S. bases. But that’s not “paying for their own defense.” It’s called imperial tribute.

    Empires have traditionally extracted tribute from conquered nations to pay for the empire’s military presence.

    Demanding that foreign nations pay the U.S. for their military occupation is not libertarian; it’s classic imperialism.

    Shutting down all overseas military bases (even if the host governments were willing to pay for them) is libertarian.

  22. JT

    Dondero: “Before that Dr. John Hospers, Darlene Brinks and other LP Founders were absolutely Anti-Communist and Pro-Military.”

    David Nolan and others weren’t pro-war, though they were anti-communist. Did Hospers favor war against the Soviet Union, or just a strong military?

    Dondero: “Only those of us who have been around the LP for a very long time – me since 1985 – remember accurate LP history.”

    You don’t “remember” that because you weren’t there at the time, stupid.

  23. Root's Teeth Are Awesome

    JT # 16 [Kwiatkowski] asks why the LP “lets” Wayne speak? Whether or not you agree with something he says, he can say whatever he wants on any website, radio, or TV show that will let him and identify himself as a Libertarian. The LP can’t stop him from doing that.

    True. But the LP can loudly and repeatedly state that Root does not represent the LP, he only speaks for himself, or at most, for a minority faction. (Evidenced by Root’s failure to win the top spots in 2008 and 2010.)

    But that would be bad for Root’s career. The more he’s perceived as an “official libertarian leader,” the more media invites he’ll get.

    Root built his current career by being an “official” libertarian talking head — so don’t expect Root to accept any honest corrections about that lying down.

  24. JT

    RTAA: “True. But the LP can loudly and repeatedly state that Root does not represent the LP, he only speaks for himself, or at most, for a minority faction.”

    How exactly should the LP do that? Send out a press release every time he’s on a show (he’s on very many) that says Wayne Root doesn’t speak for the LP?

  25. Michael H. Wilson

    re: Eric at 19 & 20

    This document I copied these lines from is claimed to be the 1972 platform of the LP. You may wish to read it and then perhaps discuss.

    “Libertarian Party Platform of 1972
    June 17, 1972

    • MILITARY
    Military Alliances
    The United States should abandon its attempts to act as policeman for the world, and should enter into alliances only with countries whose continued free existence is vital to the protection of the freedom of all American citizens. Under such an alliance, the United States may offer the protection of its nuclear umbrella, but our allies would provide their own conventional defense capabilities. We should in particular disengage from any present alliances which include despotic governments.

    Military Capability

    We shall support the maintenance of a sufficient military establishment to defend the United States against aggression. We should have a sufficient nuclear capacity to convince any potential aggressor that it cannot hope to survive a first strike against the United States. But, as our foreign commitments are reduced, and as our allies assume their share of the burden of providing a conventional war capability, we should be able to reduce the size of our conventional defense, and thus reduce the overall cost and size of our total defense establishment.”

    http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=29615#axzz1JSNtl8Fm

    Read more at the American Presidency Project: Minor/Third Party Platforms: Libertarian Party Platform of 1972 http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=29615#ixzz1JSPDuSmo

  26. Michael H. Wilson

    re: 28 for the most part we may be going in the same direction just on different tracks.

    The U.S. maintains its largest deployment outside of the war zone in Germany, 53,000; Japan, 38,000 on land and 11,000 attached at sea; and Korea 32,000. These are the three countries from which the U.S. imports a large amount of autos, electronics, steel and other materials .

    The presence of our troops and their dependents inside these countries also ensures that a lot of dollars are spent there thus boosting the local economies. If we pulled out and those nations chose not to increase their defense spending that is not our problem, but they might feel the need to do so. But as I pointed out the military personnel on the ground in those nations pump a lot of dollars into the local economies.. Some years ago it was suggested that each military person stationed on Okinawa was worth a $1000 annually to that local economy. I think that qualifies as a subsidy.

    We also have about 9000 in both Italy and England. I haven’t figured out who plans to attack those nations recently, but maybe Hannibal is headed across the Alps and we just haven’t spotted him, or maybe the Normans are enroute to Jolly Old England.

    Personally if the Normans invade England I hope they improve the food.

  27. Steve LaBianca

    John Jay Myers in #8 above – “There is no such thing as a pro-war Libertarian.” Sorry I missed it at first JJM, as I echoed that very sentiment, though worded a little differently in # 23.

  28. Marc Montoni

    JJM said:

    I was doing some math on foreign aid, I know that Bill Maher likes to say foreign aid equals .7% of our budget, he is actually wrong. (who’d a thunk it)… If you look at the proposed 2011 budget foreign aid makes up 3.3% of that…

    Can you tell me where the actual numbers for 2011 can be found from a government source? I’ve checked the “Statistical Abstract of the United States”, but the latest numbers in their spreadsheet are from 2008 (when total economic and military assistance was $49 billion.

    I’m going to make an assumption, that the aid program grows at about the same rate as every other program. Between 2005-2008 in their Statistical Abstract spreadsheet, aid went from $37 billion to $49 billion. It stands to reason that aid this year is likewise higher than in 2008. Let’s say $60 billion.

    On that assumption, that math of yours doesn’t sound right. If I am right that the on-the-books, “official” foreign aid we’re discussing is about $60 billion, and total 2011 federal spending is slowly “crawling towards $4 trillion”, $60 billion is roughly 1.5% of $4 trillion. Not 3.3%.

    (but wait there is more)… Let’s pretend we are only trying to balance the budget, then that means we just need to reduce the budget by around 1/3 (or) 33%… That means that foreign aid, is around 10% of the way to a balanced budget… So I disagree that it is “small potatoes” 10 of those potatoes, and we have a balanced budget.

    The 2011 budget has a deficit of about $1.5 trillion. $1.5 trillion / $60 billion = 25 potatoes. Not 10.

    Nevertheless, your point stands. Throw enough potatoes out, and there ya go — balanced budget.

  29. Marc Montoni

    “Israel Is America’s Top Foreign Aid Recipient” said:

    “Israel is small potatoes anymore as a beneficiary of US government aid”.

    If that were true, it should be real easy to end aid to Israel. And it isn’t.

    One *could* say that about aid in general. I wasn’t addressing political expediency; just pointing out that Libertarians need to keep aid to various nations in perspective.

    Root claims one can’t even discuss ending aid to Israel on American TV.

    If you single out Israel, then no, it won’t go anywhere on American TV; and you will make unnecessary enemies. Most Americans can smell hypocrisy and double standards. If one singles out the one nation where Jews aren’t routinely harassed either with the approval of, or directly by, the government — when other nations are getting aid also — it screams “bias”.

    This is why I continually try to get Libertarians to stop singling out Israel. We do not need to align ourselves with the fascist left, who have no problem with aid “as long as it isn’t to the Jews”.

    The Libertarian position is nonalignment, nonintervention, and no foreign aid, period. There simply is no need to single out one nation or another. None of our recipients deserves taxpayer loot; and all of our aid causes economic distortion, corruption, militarism, and despotism. It really is that simple.

  30. Marc Montoni

    HumbleTravis said:

    The “Read the original here” link at the bottom of the excerpt above does not actually link to anywhere.

    Thanks for pointing that out. Should be working now.

  31. U.S. Military Does Not Subsidize Foreign Competition

    @ 33 We also have about 9000 in both Italy and England. I haven’t figured out who plans to attack those nations recently,

    U.S. military bases in friendly nations aren’t meant to “protect” those nations; rather, they’re part of our imperial supply lines.

    An empire requires bases across the globe to supply the war zones (outgoing troops, weapons, food, medicine; incoming dead and wounded).

    Yes, the local economies may enjoy a collateral benefit (what you call subsidizing our competition), but again, the U.S. doesn’t do it for altruistic reasons, but for empire.

    Over the decades, Germans, Brits, among other foreigners, have marched against the presence of U.S. military bases — and the U.S. government has always viewed those groups as threats to U.S. interests. Some claim the CIA has even tried to infiltrate and disrupt foreign groups opposed to U.S. military bases.

    The U.S. military isn’t overseas for altruistic reasons.

  32. Matt Cholko

    I’m having one of those momemts – I’m reading through this thread, thinking about the fact that Uncle Sam has a gun to my head and is forcing me to write checks to countries around the world, many of which are governed by total scum that are lining their own pockets with my cash……

  33. Israel Is America’s Top Foreign Aid Recipient

    @ 37: If you single out Israel, then no, it won’t go anywhere on American TV; and you will make unnecessary enemies.

    I don’t think anti-foreign aid libertarians begin by “singling out” Israel. But they sometimes react to others who “single out” Israel for special favorable treatment.

    For instance, Root wrote several years ago that “rich European and Asian nations should pay for their own defense.” Root notably “singled out” Israel by omission.

    Israel supporters incessantly “single out” Israel for special praise, citing America’s “special relationship” with Israel. U.S. policy grants all sort of special favors for Israel.

    Much of the negative “singling out” of Israel is, I suspect, merely an attempt to respond to and balance all the positive “singling out” of Israel.

  34. Tom Blanton

    When Karen K. writes:

    Take your issues (http://www.lp.org/issues) and create a liberty friendliness rating on each issue for each congressman, much like the John Birch Society does on conservatism.

    how is she showing support for the JBS?

    She isn’t. She is suggesting that the LP use a tactic similar to one the JBS uses to rate politicians – not on how conservative they are like the JBS does, but rather on how liberty friendly they are.

  35. Michael H. Wilson

    # 39 I am well aware of that, but still much depends on how one defines a subsidy and for me this is a subsidy. I don’t care what you call it but the general public will probably get the message if we use the word subsidy.

  36. Michael H. Wilson

    re 39 writes The U.S. military isn’t overseas for altruistic reasons.

    I have never suggested that. But there is probably more than one reason the military is overseas from congress being afraid of being called soft on defense to the lobbyist from the military/industrial companies who benefit and the complexities of a foreign policy that has been years in development. Not to mention the Christians who seem to believe that their faith needs to be spread through the barrel of a gun.

  37. Tom Blanton

    If you examine some of the LP candidates running for U.S. House, you will find many with pro-war sentiments and many who apparently don’t regard wars important enough as an issue to address.

    There were very few LP House Candidates in 2004, 2006 and 2008 that were clearly anti-war, judging by their campaign websites.

    Besides that, when you have large numbers of the rank and file who regard people like Glenn Beck, Glenn Reynolds, and Neal Boortz as libertarians, there is some indication there that they accept strident pro-war and interventionist attitudes as being acceptable.

    Here are some comments about John Stossel and David Boaz on a discussion they had regarding war at the Students for Liberty International Conference:

    Then Boaz completely refutes Stossel’s suggestion that surge was a good idea. Good for him, that’s correct. But then the Q&A session starts (starts at 3:40) and I just about hit the ceiling.

    A students asks, “True or false: slaughtering innocent people is never justified.” Stossel, without missing a beat, says that we “had to kill innocent people to end World War 2.” Really? Regulating aspirin? Oh no! That’s an attack on liberty! Incinerating a city full of civilians whose government is trying to surrender? Fully defensible. Fire-bombing Dresden just because it’s a German city? Fully defensible. But gee whiz, if nuking a city into oblivion isn’t wrong, is there any killing in war that is not justified?

    Boaz counters the original question by saying that “slaughter” is a charged term and we need to rephrase the question. Even granting that Boaz’s first counter is true, that the question is loaded, his answer that follows is horrifying. Essentially, he argues that killing innocent people probably is justified if it leads to creating freer countries.

    http://libertarianchristians.com/2011/04/05/stossle-at-sfl/

    Libertarians with the mutant GOP gene in their DNA can safely be against Obama’s war on Libya without offending their Republican cronies because many Republicans, conservatives, tea partiers, and talk radio propagandists have criticized this war. But it is not so much the intervention they have the problem with, it is the constitutional issue.

  38. MarcMontoni Post author

    Continuing reply to “Israel Is America’s Top Foreign Aid Recipient”:

    As for Iraq, contrary to Marc’s link, Iraq doesn’t receive all that much U.S. aid. The money earmarked for Iraq goes straight to U.S. corporations. (The infamous “no-bid” contractors.)

    Where do you get this information? Yes, there are a lot of no-bid contractors getting a lot of dosh, but the government of Iraq (as well as provincial and city governments, clan elders, and NGO’s) has(ve) also received a couple hundred billion in direct grants that bear(s) no strings except an occasional expectation of an accounting (which usually never comes).

    And by the way, most of the aid — for all nations — that involves ‘strings attached’ is MILITARY aid.

    “Israel is the largest foreign country beneficiary of U.S. aid.

    Not anymore!

    It’s the only nation/aid recipient that doesn’t even have to spend its aid money on U.S. goods.

    Please remember the “strings attached” aid is almost always military aid.

    Israel lobbied — and got — an exemption, whereby it could spend the money on its own military industry.”

    That sounds outrageous but actually it’s just misleading. Yes, they have an exemption, but not 100%. By agreement, Israel uses almost 75% of its FMF funds to purchase U.S. defense equipment. Yes, they can spend a *portion* of their US military aid with their own manufacturers; but not all of it. Israel still buys billions of dollars in US-made arms. Just last August they inked a deal for 20 F-35’s at a price of $2.5 billion.

    Nevertheless, how much Israel (or Iraq, or Afghanistan, etc) spent on which side of a political line is, to be generous, an irrelevant side issue.

    What is relevant is that the US must end all foreign aid. Period.

    What is relevant is that the United States has pee’d away $1.8 trillion of our wealth on Afghanistan and Iraq; and a non-trivial portion of that aid disappeared into the pockets of corruptocrats and other petty thieves in those nations.

    Michael Wilson mentioned what I’ve been alluding to, when he said: “The presence of our troops and their dependents inside these countries also ensures that a lot of dollars are spent there thus boosting the local economies. If we pulled out and those nations chose not to increase their defense spending that is not our problem, but they might feel the need to do so. But as I pointed out the military personnel on the ground in those nations pump a lot of dollars into the local economies.. Some years ago it was suggested that each military person stationed on Okinawa was worth a $1000 annually to that local economy. I think that qualifies as a subsidy.

    I agree with this. If the US wasn’t meddling overseas, every dime spent by soldiers for a night on the town would instead remain in your pocket.

    “Leaving behind” a new water plant, or a new school, or a new farmer’s market, or a few million dollars’ worth of oil pipeline repairs — whether the work was performed by Hallibuton or Abdullah al-Jubouri — represents wealth transferred to Iraq.

    You also said @ 28, “U.S. Military Does Not Subsidize Foreign Competition”:

    Shutting down all overseas military bases (even if the host governments were willing to pay for them) is libertarian.

    I agree on that point. Without reservation.

    All US aid does is allow foreign governments to neglect their country’s needs and spend their own money on other things.

  39. Robert Capozzi

    42 tb: how is [KK] showing support for the JBS?

    Me: @3, I used the term “role model,” not “support.” We’d probably not need to explain why this is an issue if KK’d said “KKK” instead of “JBS.” Both are notorious, although I suspect the KKK is even more notorious than the JBS.

    By citing a JBS survey, KK first establishes she’s taken the time to assess their methodology. Many if not most might infer that KK has at least sympathies for JBS, else she’d find another, second-most-effective survey. It’s certainly possible that this is merely a case that she admires the JBS’s survey method, but why go there? Presumably, she’s read the JBS survey, perhaps over the years, and that itself seems like a questionable use of one’s time, and is certainly so to share that in an “open letter.”

    Sipos may know the truth involving KK and the JBS. I don’t. 😉 Politically, the association is not winning.

    The optics of choosing to cite a notorious (perhaps even unfairly notorious) organization in a broadside against the LP seems like exceedingly poor judgment to me. Add to that the many mischaracterizations in her letter, and this was overall a bad move, IMO, on the order of Root’s take on the Cordoba House. If it was a hasty error, I’m certainly willing to look the other way, but I’d sure like to see KK clarify what she meant by citing JBS.

    Add to this KK’s granting an interview a LaRouche pub, and we may see a pattern emerging. Certainly I prefer the LP to be positioned as a peace party, but not a party that is in any way associated with fringe elements.

  40. Robert Capozzi

    45 tb: You quote a L-Christians blogger commenting on Boaz, “Essentially, he argues that killing innocent people probably is justified if it leads to creating freer countries.”

    me: Depending on the circumstances, I would think you would agree. I know I do. A war of self-determination might include killing innocents, which is certainly tragic.

    Many Ls are revisionists on the Confederate Elite Insurrection (Civil War) for ex., including, I thought, you. The CSA killed innocents. (I’m not in this camp, as I found that war to be highly conflicted.)

    Please clarify: Can wars of self determination be justified?

    Innocents are often killed in acts of “self defense.” Must Ls be pacifists?

  41. Tom Blanton

    Given that Jefferson Davis was a tyrant and the CSA may have killed innocents, the Union targeted and killed civilians by an order of magnitude greater than any civilians killed by the CSA. Much of the war was fought in the south and it was not the CSA that desired to have this war, but rather another tyrant, Lincoln – to hold together his precious empire.

    I find it interesting that Capozzi finds nuking Japan an act of self-defense. Perhaps he also finds our wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya, and various other nations where covert activities are taking place to be acts of self-defense.

    Perhaps those who maintain a personal program of willful ignorance in the political sphere are unaware that the JBS has rated conservatives for many years, but many people who do not support the JBS have been aware of this. I’m sure that to many moderate absolutists, there mere mention of the JBS causes the inner Buckley neocon child to experience great trauma, but to mention something is not the same as associating with it or wasting time in an obsession with it. As I have inferred before, ignorance of well known information deprives one of the context to develop opinions of any value.

    It is interesting to note that the JBS publication, The New American was once edited by Will Grigg, a prominent voice against the police state in libertarian circles. The New American often publishes articles that appeal to libertarians and constitutionalists. It is somewhat ironic that someone who belongs to a fringe faction of a fringe political party that attempts to represent a fringe movement worries about someone even mentioning the JBS on the grounds that this is a fringe organization.

    Oh, and what about that other fringe bunch, the LaRouchies?

    Capozzi’s criticism is the same criticism of Kwiatkowski that was made by David Horowitz’s “Front Page”, and the neocon National Review. I guess we know where Capozzi gets his ideas from.

    Certainly it is not surprising that necons attacked Kwiatkowski once she blew the whistle on Douglas Feith, the butt boy for mighty neocon Wolfowitz. What is surprising is that a “libertarian” would give a flying fuck what the neocons think. Well, except for “libertarians” like Brian Holtz and Bruce Cohen.

    Let’s let Karen K. defend herself about the LaRouche charges made by the lying warmongers that Capozzi so readily believes (as if these cakewalkers have ever been right about anything):

    http://www.nathancallahan.com/kwiatletter.html

    Capozzi proves once again that willful ignorance through limiting one’s own intake of information nearly always results in worthless opinions and leads one to make bad decisions. Being guided by neocon spin can be fatal and can bankrupt nations.

  42. Tom Blanton

    Note to Capozzi: clean the lint from your naval before reading the Kwiatkowski letter linked above. This may give you additional clarity once you begin gazing process after being presented with unwanted information. That is, if you bother to even read something other than Front Page or National Review.

  43. Marc Montoni

    me: Depending on the circumstances, I would think you would agree. I know I do. A war of self-determination might include killing innocents, which is certainly tragic.

    That’s why a *libertarian* should oppose war.

    Many Ls are revisionists on the Confederate Elite Insurrection

    Given that the north, before the war, was extracting some 85% of total federal revenue from the south, I’d say that’s a pretty big incentive for northern elites to want to go to war for tax territory.

    Additional reading is indicated. Here’s a bibliography for those who still cling to the pro-leviathan, “to the victor go the spoils”, public-school-engendered myths.

    The Real Lincoln – DiLorenzo
    Lincoln unmasked – DiLorenzo
    War Crimes Against Southern Civilians – Walter Cisco
    The South Was Right – Walter and James Kennedy (specifically chapter 5 “Crimes against Southern Civilians”)

    The CSA killed innocents.

    Sure. But the important thing is that there would have been NO civilian casualties had the north not made the decision to invade.

    ZERO.

    It is likely no Confederate force would ever had crossed the Mason-Dixon, had the Great Socialisticator not desired war as the response to secession.

    Confederate armies were rank amateurs at mayhem against the locals, compared to the socialists in Washington. No Confederate force ever targeted any northern cities for weeks of steady, vicious, and indiscriminate shelling.

    Hmmm… Sounds like the Union’s still doing the same thing, just against the civilians of Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya…

    Please clarify: Can wars of self determination be justified?

    Why don’t *you* clarify: Can wars to retain tax territory ever be justified?

    Innocents are often killed in acts of “self defense.” Must Ls be pacifists?

    Straw man. I’m not a pacifist, nor are any of the other noninterventionists I know.

  44. Robert Capozzi

    49 tb: I find it interesting that Capozzi finds nuking Japan an act of self-defense.

    me: Huh? I don’t believe that, nor have I said that.

    tb: Perhaps he also finds our wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya, and various other nations where covert activities are taking place to be acts of self-defense.

    me: No, I don’t support those wars. A civil person would retract such a ridiculous charge. Leninists…dunno…

    tb: …to mention something is not the same as associating with it …

    me: For real?!

    tb: Capozzi’s criticism is the same criticism of Kwiatkowski that was made by David Horowitz’s “Front Page”, and the neocon National Review.

    me: My only “criticism” here is that KK seems to not be careful in her granting of interviews and invoking notorious associations. Apparently you don’t see this as a problem. One wonders if she granted an interview to a KKK publication whether that would be enough for you to see my point…

    51 MM: Why don’t *you* clarify: Can wars to retain tax territory ever be justified?

    me: I’m sorry, I don’t understand the question. Please rephrase.

  45. Black Southerners

    it was not the CSA that desired to have this war,

    The CSA government may not have wanted the war, but I’m sure many slaves wanted it, because they (correctly) saw the Union as liberators.

    Whenever neo-Confederates discuss the South’s rights, interests, and desires, it seems they only consider white Southerners. It’s as if black Southerners didn’t exist and don’t count.

  46. MarcMontoni Post author

    me: I’m sorry, I don’t understand the question. Please rephrase.

    Okay, I’m out.

    I refuse to participate in a discussion that involves malingering.

  47. Tom Blanton

    Merriam-Webster

    Definition of ASSOCIATE
    transitive verb
    1. to join as a partner, friend, or companion

    To refer to an organization is not the same as associating with the organization. To be interviewed by an organization is not the same as associating with the organization – at least in the normal use of standard words.

    I hardly think that suggesting the LP use a similar tactic that is used by the JBS elevates the JBS to the level of “role model”.

    I find it odd that Capozzi hurls neocon hyperbole at Kwiatkowski who merely grants an interview with a controversial news source (LaRouche’s publication), which is not a hate group like the KKK, and suggests a tactic used by another controversial group, also not a hate group. Karen K. was not attempting to recruit for the LP or even represent libertarians to either of these groups.

    Yet, Capozzi is pretty much OK with Wonderful Wayne representing libertarians and attempting to recruit for the LP (at least according to him and his cult members) among the cesspools of deranged right-wingers such as Michael Savage.

    He openly and actually associates (or claims to) with some of the worst elements of the organized Tea Party movement as opposed to non-affiliated local tea party groups as well as associating with any right-wing shock jocks that will let him regurgitate their favorite talking points. Mr. Wonderful doesn’t even hide these associations – he boasts with pride about them and publishes long lists of their names.

    Is there some sort of neocon bias at play here? What’s with the neocon talking points about Kwiatkowski? Is there a Straussian manipulator hiding behind the veneer of neolibertarian moderation?

    I’m wondering about guilt by association. Capozzi posts nearly continuously here at IPR. So do many members of the Constitution Party. Surely the erudite and well-informed Capozzi is aware of the connections between the Constitution Party and the JBS. So, by association Capozzi is linked to a website that is linked to the Constitution Party – a fringe political party that recruits speakers and members from the JBS!

    Shocking! It’s nothing less than a slap in the face for actual radical centrists and moderate absolutists who refuse to associate with the radical extremists involved with the JBS.

    Will Capozzi, like Frontpagemag.com (David Horwitz), link Kwiatkowski to the moral degenerate she actually does associate with, Lew Rockwell? The neocons view Rockwell and his website much as Capozzi does.

    The evil Rockwell may not be everyone’s cup of tea (he also is associated with the evil Ron Paul), but at least he isn’t bragging about how tight he is with Michael Savage.

  48. David Colborne

    @54: I’ve always thought it was a little odd that there are so many Libertarians out there that act like the “wrong” side won the Civil War. It’s as if their reflexive hatred of a strong, central government blinds them to the fact that slavery is as un-libertarian as you can get.

    Don’t get me wrong – I’m not going to start singing Lincoln’s praise here or anything. Yes, he suspended habeas corpus. Yes, he instituted the draft. Yes, he created the first income tax. Yes, the Union victory of the Civil War ultimately led to an expansion of federal power at the expense of states. All of those things are true. However, as unpleasant as all those things are, they’re still better than slavery.

    Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to sit here and wait for some ignorant asshat to chime in that we’re all “slaves” because we have to pay taxes and get a passport if we want to leave the country.

  49. Tom Blanton

    David, your comment leads me to believe you think the reason Lincoln resorted to war to keep the Union intact was because of slavery.

    It wasn’t. It was over secession. Slavery, among other things, may have been the reason the south seceded, but it wasn’t Lincoln’s stated reason for the war.

    That 600,000 people died in an ugly war that continues to affect the U.S., I’m not so sure it was worth it – even if the end of slavery did finally result – when you consider that slavery most likely would not have survived more than 25 years more anyway and when you consider that other nations ended slavery without a bloody conflict.

    It isn’t so much that the wrong side won, it is that the war was not necessary. It certainly wasn’t like white supremacy and slavery hadn’t existed in the north.

    To revere Lincoln as if he was some paragon of virtue is an insult to the thousands on both sides that died needlessly and he was a racist tyrant just as Jefferson Davis was. He was worse only in that he waged war against the south purely for political reasons – not to free the slaves. That didn’t arise until later and was used as a political tool.

    In my mind, it seems unseemly to glorify either side of the civil war. Often, in war and politics, there are no good guys.

  50. Robert Capozzi

    57 tb, you cite only the first, FORMAL meaning of “associate.”

    Here’s another:

    “#4: to bring together or into relationship in any of various intangible ways (as in memory or imagination)”

    Better still, the thesaurus meaning of “associate” is what I’m concerned with:

    “to think of (something) in combination

    Associating need not be formal relations. They can be perceptions based on memories.

    I’m generally supportive of KK and her important, even though I disagree with her at times. I take her at her word that she’s not a “LaRouchie.” I would not advise anyone to spend time with LaRouchie media, however. I suspect she didn’t know the FORMAL association in that case.

    I don’t think Ls should cite JBS or its publications because they are notorious in the public’s mind. It’s not good for our image, IMO.

    I did, however, LOL at the idea that I’m a neocon and a Straussian manipulator! I’m not one, for the record, not even remotely in those directions.

  51. Tom Blanton

    I did, however, LOL at the idea that I’m a neocon and a Straussian manipulator! I’m not one, for the record, not even remotely in those directions.

    Methinks thou protesteth too much!

    By using the neocon talking points that they use against Karen K., you associate yourself with the neocon propaganda organ. You have obviously been briefed on the LaRouche talking points or took it upon yourself to go over them.

    Mere coincidence?

    And what about your IPR connection to the Constitution Party with their JBS connection?

    Apparently, you don’t deny this sordid association.

    I won’t even go into Ron Paul’s association with the JBS. It might bring about a SPLC investigation of IPR.

  52. Thomas L. Knapp

    Bob,

    You ask:

    “Innocents are often killed in acts of ‘self defense.’ Must Ls be pacifists?”

    No, but they should be willing to take responsibility for what they do or have others do on their behalf.

    If one of my hired “defenders” kills an innocent, even if it’s in “self-defense” or defense of me, then my hired defender (and possibly myself, depending on whether or not vicarious liability is a valid concept) killed an innocent, and should be willing to pay the appropriate penalties for doing so, whatever they are.

  53. David Colborne

    Tom, our views actually aren’t that divergent. I certainly agree that both sides had their flaws, and I have no doubt that Lincoln prosecuted the war to prevent secession, not to end slavery. However, admitting as much does not change the fact that the South wanted to secede because they didn’t believe the northern states were going to tolerate slavery for too much longer. Since many of the northern states had passed laws overturning the Fugitive Slave Act, which was referenced in South Carolina’s Articles of Secession, it was a reasonable assumption to make. Consequently, I hope you’ll forgive me if I’m not exactly sympathetic to the Confederate’s cause.

  54. Robert Capozzi

    61 TB: And what about your IPR connection to the Constitution Party with their JBS connection?

    me: I’m not concerned with any connections there might be. I am a mere commenter on a 3rd party comment board. I am not a public figure, although even if I were, I would not be worried.

    I just can’t tell how serious or not serious you are about this point.

    One ventures out into the public square and do one’s best to advance one’s idea. In that process, it’s wise to remain as reputationally “clean” as possible.

    Perhaps you disagree.

  55. Robert Capozzi

    62 tk: If one of my hired “defenders” kills an innocent, … should be willing to pay the appropriate penalties for doing so, whatever they are.

    me: On some levels, I certainly see your point. I am not aware that a rule of law has per se been established to determine what that appropriate penalty might be, and whether such a rule can be universally applied.

  56. whatever

    “to think of (something) in combination

    So, if I think of you in combination with the Special Olympics, shouldn’t you have to disavow the Kennedy family’s notorious associations with Sam Giancana and the Democrat Party? The whole thing seems very unsavory, if you ask me.

  57. Black Southerners

    I ask this of every neo-Confederate:

    What if the CSA were allowed to secede right now? And allowed to establish as libertarian a government as you like? Would you support that?

    Oh yes, one caveat. Only blacks can enjoy CSA citizenship, with all rights and benefits. Whites (including all CSA sympathizers) become property, to be bought and sold, raped and tortured, at the pleasure of their black owners.

    Would you still support CSA independence?

    Would you still consider this new CSA “more libertarian” than the current Union?

  58. Robert Capozzi

    66 whatever: So, if I think of you in combination with the Special Olympics, shouldn’t you have to disavow the Kennedy family’s notorious associations with Sam Giancana and the Democrat Party?

    me: Ya know, if YOU make that association, then YOU might not support Special Olympics. Off the top, I find your association a huge stretch, and I suspect most would see no particular association there.

    Now, if the Chair of the Special Olympics cited the good works of Giancana, your point might not be so strained for me and probably most.

    Perception is subjective.

  59. Robert Capozzi

    57 tb: The neocons view Rockwell and his website much as Capozzi does. The evil Rockwell may not be everyone’s cup of tea (he also is associated with the evil Ron Paul), but at least he isn’t bragging about how tight he is with Michael Savage.

    me: Again, you misunderstand my view. I read LRC and I sometimes agree with its content. I sometimes find it overstated, sometimes wildly so. It represents a wing of L thought, and for that I respect it. I sometimes wish they would back off the overstated (IMO) and simplistic positions on the Civil War and plumb line-istic analysis. I don’t consider anyone “evil,” incl. Lew and Dr. Paul. My impression is that Root has stopped appearing on Savage, who is IMO not as notorious as the JBS but is still too notorious (and often wrong-minded) for Ls to use as a megaphone.

  60. whatever

    The huge stretching portion of the Special Olympics shall be directed by the Spanish Inquisition.

    Scurrilous associations shall be punished and the hugest stretch shall win and/or lose.

  61. Carol Moore

    Karen failed to – and others need to – make an actual list of what it is that Root has said that is not non-interventionist. I have been paying some attention and have seen him be careful about not supporting military intervention (unless I’ve missed or forgotten something – please provide specifics). However, I assume the worst because of his support from those who do favor preemptive war, his insistence in facebook last year that libertarians NOT criticize Israel because Jews give half the money to the Demopublicans and his hysteria over the “9/11 Mosque.” I assume that once he has the nomination he will go where his heart lies at the least prompting: i.e., attack any danged Muslim nation that doesn’t kiss America’s butt, and especially bomb the hell out of that threat to America, Iran.

  62. whatever

    Root will be soooo redundant with Trump in the race. Root’s “Walk of Vegas” star vs Trump International Hotel Las Vegas(for starters)? Are you kidding me? (Also PS, Trump’s less a warmonger.)

    Certainly the LP can’t be stupid enough t go there. A totally different direction is needed. An acceptable former Congressman or Gov… or a radical troofer type like Duensing.

    Root is just the lamest of all worlds.

  63. Trump's Ego

    Generally, the media’s attention span can only focus on ONE independent/alternative/third party presidential candidate.

    Perot owned that spotlight in 1992 and 1996. Nader had it in 2000. Ron Paul had it in 2008, despite running as GOP.

    If Trump runs, it’s doubtful the media would pay much attention to the LP, GP, or any lesser third party candidate.

    And if Paul runs as an indie, well, that’s TWO strong independent candidates in 2012. With Trump and Paul in the race, no other indie/third party candidate will get much media time.

  64. Starchild

    As usual in discussions of world affairs, I see lots of nationalist language here, a good part of it probably inadvertent and just used out of habit — terms like “us”, “we”, and “our” being used to describe the U.S. government and its actions.

    I assert that we as libertarians should try to help people see the difference between themselves and the governments that claim to represent them.

    People who see the governments that claim jurisdiction over them, steal from them, and try to run their lives as extensions of themselves, will are unlikely to clearly understand how they are being oppressed and their rights being violated.

    Remember, nationalism is the lifeblood of the State. Please help fight statism by avoiding nationalist language and thereby reducing nationalist thinking!

  65. Thomas L. Knapp

    There was plenty of blame to place on both sides in the Civil War.

    Lincoln suspended habeas corpus, imposed the first income tax, put the US on a fiat currency, imposed conscription, etc., all to “maintain the Union.”

    From the northern perspective, slavery was a minor component issue until 1863 when Lincoln turned to emancipation. Making slavery the big issue made the European powers reluctant to intervene on behalf of, or even officially recognize, the Confederacy, and it also at least theoretically made slave uprisings in the south more likely.

    The Confederacy? Yeah, its advocates babbled about states’ rights and the freedom to secede out of one side of their mouths while making it clear that it was really all about slavery out the other side — then set up a powerful central state that conscripted down to the age of 15 and hanged eastern Tennesseans who had the gall and temerity to try and exercise their freedom to secede. “States’ rights” and “secession” were dirty words in the Confederacy unless they were uttered about the Confederacy.

  66. Robert Capozzi

    75 tk: From the northern perspective, slavery was a minor component issue until 1863 when Lincoln turned to emancipation.

    me: Yes. The USA mobilized to put down the Confederate Elite Insurrection militarily principally over their interpretation of the rule of law at the time. The Confederate Elites attempted their insurrectionist “secession” in part over the desire to maintain slavery, as well as other grievances, such as disproportionate taxation and trade policies. The Elites interpolated non-explicit powers of the states to do many things, including “seceding,” as their legal theory. They didn’t attempt negotiation to exit the contract/Constitution; they acted unilaterally.

    Taking “sides” in this day and age seems bizarre. Why do that? Why do that ESPECIALLY while advocating a political agenda?

  67. LibertarianGirl

    SC_”As usual in discussions of world affairs, I see lots of nationalist language here, a good part of it probably inadvertent and just used out of habit — terms like “us”, “we”, and “our” being used to describe the U.S. government and its actions.”

    me_ thats an excellent point , I do it myself , gonna try and be aware of them and be more precise with my vocabulary

  68. Carol Moore

    Hey, Tom, good analysis of civil war. Can you direct us with an article with more specifics on those details? Thanks…. Meanwhile, whose listing evidence Root a warmonger. Guess I can ask Root in person on Saturday 🙂

  69. Jill Pyeatt

    I assume, Carol, from comment # 78, you’ll be at the LNC meeting? Will you be blogging about it?

  70. LPVA Disgraces Our Party

    @51

    Mr. Montoni is Secretary of the Libertarian Party of Virginia.

    He is also a confederate apologist.

    By electing an apologist for the confederate slaveholder traitors as an officer, the LPVA disgraces our party. They should remove him from office, or they should be disaffiliated.

    The War of the Slaveholders’ Rebellion was about slavery, a matter spelled out by a more than adequate number of the slaveholder states on their attempted way out the door.

    And what were the slaveholders trying to protect? They were trying to protect their access to twelve-year-old girl slaves, and eleven -year-old little boys, on which they could work their perverted lusts.

    The unspoken observation on slavery, after all, was how many slaves who had been born in house bore a great resemblance to the house’s paterfamilias and his white sons.

    They were trying to protect their fixation on non-consensual bondage, degradation, and sadism, their opportunity to torture even unto death the human beings they viewed as their property.

    The important difference between southern slavery and the 20th century communist and fascist extermination states is, of course, that Stalin, Mao, et al., wanted to kill their enemies, to the tune of a hundred million or more souls, so that they would be dead, but the Southern Slaveholders wanted to breed their slaves, so that their hideous crimes could be continued from 1861 until the end of time.

    Abraham Lincoln, for whatever it is worth, was willing to accept radical compromises to avoid the war, notably the Crittenden Amendment and Compromise, little good that his willingness did him or anyone else.

  71. Robert Capozzi

    80 disgrace: By electing an apologist for the confederate slaveholder traitors as an officer, the LPVA disgraces our party. They should remove him from office, or they should be disaffiliated.

    me: Hmm, no fan of confederate apologism, but this seems a bit rash. A lot of Ls are sincere in their apologism, though I must say I find their position wrong-minded on a lot of levels. Purging the many apologists in the LP seems cruel and unusual to me.

  72. David Colborne

    @82: I agree that a purge is unnecessary. Besides, if a majority of people elect a misguided fan of “states rights”, that either means they agree with the person or the person has enough redeeming qualities outside of that to justify keeping the person in office.

    I will note that, personally speaking, Neo-Confederate sympathies are where my “big tent” ends, which means you won’t get my vote if you publicly espouse that position. I just can’t get past the whole slavery issue, and nobody’s given me a reason I can embrace that suggests I should. Way I see it, if you think states have rights… well, where does any state get its rights and powers from? Ah, that’s right – the blood and tears of its people. It’s rarely been as true as it was with the CSA, which was created to enable its member states to perpetuate and better profit from the institution of slavery. Way I see it, losing 600,000 troops to liberate a single slave, even if Lincoln did everything he could to avoid making it about slavery (if my house was surrounded by slave states, one hostile and one thinking about it, I’d tread softly, too) is an excellent bargain.

  73. Black Southerners

    Capozzi @ 82: A lot of Ls are sincere in their apologism… Purging the many apologists in the LP seems cruel and unusual to me.

    So the test is sincerity?

    Are you saying that the LP should welcome racists, anti-Semites, and homophobes, provided that they are sincere racists, anti-Semites, and homophobes?

    Some libertarians call blacks racist for supporting Obama… but sincere neo-Confederacy is not racist?

  74. Thomas L. Knapp

    Carol @ 78,

    I don’t know of any short form articles offhand that cover all that stuff. My preferred source — for beautiful writing as much as historical accuracy — is Shelby Foote’s The Civil War: A Narrative.

  75. JT

    David: “Way I see it, losing 600,000 troops to liberate a single slave, even if Lincoln did everything he could to avoid making it about slavery (if my house was surrounded by slave states, one hostile and one thinking about it, I’d tread softly, too) is an excellent bargain.”

    I’m not taking a position on this issue here, but just to be clear: you’re saying that 600,000 people being killed–many of whom were conscripted and forced to fight–would be worth freeing one person? Really? That seems like a bizarre statement to me.

  76. Marc Montoni

    @ 54:

    The CSA government may not have wanted the war, but I’m sure many slaves wanted it, because they (correctly) saw the Union as liberators… Whenever neo-Confederates discuss the South’s rights, interests, and desires, it seems they only consider white Southerners. It’s as if black Southerners didn’t exist and don’t count.

    I’m not a neo-Confederate, whatever in the hell you mean by that. I am an anti-war libertarian. Period.

    I believe the states have the Constitutionally-assumed ability to secede from the Union, for any reason, or no reason. I also believe that the slaves (or other groups) had every right to form their own communities and secede from the CSA, in turn. I am in favor of secession at all times and for any reason — even bad ones. I am in favor of secession under those terms for one simple reason:

    Secession turns big, powerful ones, into smaller, less powerful ones.

    Secession by slave communities should have been a matter between them and their supporters (there were many abolitionists who were ready to fight), and the CSA.

    Or, perhaps, it should have been a matter between themselves and the US government which enforced slavery for over half a century (fourscore and seven years, or something), and only decided to “do something” about it when it faced a loss of its golden goose.

    The US government could have abolished slavery with the stroke of a pen — likely without any war — had it done what other governments around the world did: compensate slaveowners. It did this in the District of Columbia; it could have done wonders to ease the transition everywhere else.

    @80:

    Mr. Montoni is Secretary of the Libertarian Party of Virginia.

    You win the prize! Congratulations!

    He is also a confederate apologist.

    Wrong again. I’m anti-war and pro-secession. If that makes me a ‘confederate apologist’ in your book, well, you’re entitled to your opinion.

    Two can play that game. Those in favor of war are ‘murder apologists’. Neo-Lincolnista murder-apologists sympathies are where my “big tent” ends.

    By electing an apologist for the confederate slaveholder traitors as an officer, the LPVA disgraces our party.

    Oh, hi Gene. Still think “traitor” — a word you’ve used to describe libertarians on several occasions — is a great zinger to use? Why a Libertarian would even use that word is really strange to me. A Stalinist using it, I could understand. How’s that pro-war stuff you’re into working out for you? Oh, and are you still into that “government knows best on climate, and we should endorse as ‘libertarian’ every industry-shuttering, job-destroying environmental regulation that comes down the pike”, thing?

    David @ 83:

    It’s rarely been as true as it was with the CSA, which was created to enable its member states to perpetuate and better profit from the institution of slavery.

    The United States of America stood upon slaves for fourscore and seven years, as I recall. The CSA wouldn’t have lasted for a decade as an independent entity, with a majority slave population in several states. Left to itself, it would have disintegrated on its own. For that matter, had southerners not feared an invasion, it is passing likely there would have been no CSA at all — just a bunch of independent states. Several of the seceding states initially declared themselves independent (Mississippi, for instance, declared itself a nation and even came up with its own flag).

    I am surprised that a Libertarian doesn’t recognize the unifying influence an external threat has on the otherwise disunited.

    Way I see it, losing 600,000 troops to liberate a single slave, even if Lincoln did everything he could to avoid making it about slavery (if my house was surrounded by slave states, one hostile and one thinking about it, I’d tread softly, too) is an excellent bargain.

    I think the vast majority of those 600,000 men would be outraged at your suggestion. Have you walked in their shoes? Were you dragged out of your home by conscription (at the point of a gun) and marched off to death (at the point of a gun)? I’m sorry but I find that comment of it being a ‘bargain’ just plain repugnant. You can’t enslave (and eventually murder) a free man in order to free a slave. Book recommendation: “Emancipating Slaves, Enslaving Free Men”, by libertarian author Jeff Hummell.

  77. Thomas L. Knapp

    Marc @88,

    You write:

    “Secession turns big, powerful ones, into smaller, less powerful ones.”

    That’s an interesting claim. Got any evidence to support it?

    The southern secession multiplied one moderately powerful government into two much larger, much more powerful, much more tyrannical governments, including nearly 200 times as many government military personnel.

  78. Bill Wood

    O’kay, I’ll bite. I’ve know Marc for 11 years. For “Liberty” and the Libertarian Party he is one of the few that really works hard to grow the Party and to spread the message of the LP. Marc is no way, no how a disgrace to the LPVA. I for one am glad he is working for us!

  79. Robert Capozzi

    83 DC: Way I see it, losing 600,000 troops to liberate a single slave, even if Lincoln did everything he could to avoid making it about slavery (if my house was surrounded by slave states, one hostile and one thinking about it, I’d tread softly, too) is an excellent bargain.

    Me: Hmm, while I almost always find myself nodding in agreement to your thoughts, but this one – not so much. I can go with “600K to end slavery is a bargain worth making.” A single slave? I see the sentiment, but I can’t go there.

    84 BS: So the test is sincerity? Are you saying that the LP should welcome racists, anti-Semites, and homophobes, provided that they are sincere racists, anti-Semites, and homophobes?

    Me: No. Let me clarify. Revisionism and states rights are not views without merit, IMO. They are not hateful positions, per se, although there are haters who buy into revisionism and states rights. For that reason alone, I would strongly suggest that revisionist Ls tread lightly on that issue, not emphasizing it in the public square, and certainly not to associate revisionism with L-ism. I would hope that the revisionists see that the association between haters and Ls get linked through revisionism. Not helpful to our broader cause!

    It’s not for me to say who should get purged, but I would advise shunning haters, certainly.

    Not all revisionists are haters, though. I assume most revisionist Ls are not haters, even though their analysis of “states rights” overlaps with some of the views haters hold.

  80. Robert Capozzi

    As a general proposition, I find this “pro/anti-war” setup non-useful. In most contexts, it means one in for/against a particular war…Vietnam, Iraq, etc. Most people will say they are “for peace” and that war is a last resort. Heck, I suspect Bill Kristol’d say that!

    For some Ls, the term “anti-war” appears to be code for “strict non-intervention.” If correct, then KK and LR’s point might be that some Ls are not strict non-interventionists. That to me seems to be a fairer point.

    Calling an L a “statist” or “pro-war” is used as a curse, it appears. Unless one has bought into a Leninist, plumb-line approach, I can’t say this is a productive communication tactic. It feels like an ex-communication.

  81. David Colborne

    All right, let’s do this.

    @JT (87, 88):

    I’m not taking a position on this issue here, but just to be clear: you’re saying that 600,000 people being killed–many of whom were conscripted and forced to fight–would be worth freeing one person? Really? That seems like a bizarre statement to me.

    I’m saying that any price that leads to an individual becoming free is a price worth paying. Any price. That includes conscripting people for a few years.

    Keep in mind here that we’re talking about generational slaves – these were families that were passed down generation after generation like breeding lines of cattle. Freeing even one of those individuals led to a decrease in the viability and vitality of the slave-holding system, which was only a good thing. Luckily, we got a lot more than one freed slave from 600,000 deaths – we freed all of them.

    I know that there are some on this site (and elsewhere) who disagree with me on this. That’s fine. I just want to make it plain that, at least in my mind, conscripting a few hundred thousand formerly free individuals at the point of a gun and sacrificing the remainder of their lives in the service of the state over the course of four years is vastly preferable to letting a single person be born as a slave, live as a slave, and ultimately die as a slave, never to experience freedom.

    I know it’s a controversial position to take, so your mileage may vary.

    Btw, I don’t think “bargaining” with other people’s lives is ever excellent.

    I agree. For what it’s worth, given a choice between sacrificing 600,000 lives to free a single slave and not sacrificing a single life to free a billion slaves, well, hey, it’s not a hard choice. I don’t like killing conscripts, I just really don’t like slavery.

    @Marc Mantoni (89):

    Secession turns big, powerful ones, into smaller, less powerful ones.

    Singapore would like a word with you. So would the Vatican, interestingly enough. Yes, it’s true that small city-state sized governments aren’t in a position to do much to their neighbors, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t in a position to oppress their own citizens. Heck, The Prince was written as a response to the political leadership of Florence, which certainly wasn’t a continent-spanning power at the time.

    Or, perhaps, it should have been a matter between themselves and the US government which enforced slavery for over half a century (fourscore and seven years, or something), and only decided to “do something” about it when it faced a loss of its golden goose.

    The US government could have abolished slavery with the stroke of a pen — likely without any war — had it done what other governments around the world did: compensate slaveowners. It did this in the District of Columbia; it could have done wonders to ease the transition everywhere else.

    That’s a… creative reading of history right there. Yes, it’s true, the US government enforced slavery – it was part of the Constitution, after all. If it weren’t for the 3/5’s Compromise, the southern states never would have bothered to join the Union in the first place. However, it’s that latter point that clogs the issue a bit – see, the Southern states got to vote in the Federal government, too. Consequently, any attempt to eliminate slavery, even with up-front compensation, would require the cooperation of the slave-owning states, many of whom were almost completely dependent on the slave economy. There wouldn’t have been a pay off big enough to justify the loss in productivity such a program would cause, to say nothing of the layers of cultural ego Southern society used to justify their “peculiar institution”.

    Bear in mind that, less than a decade prior to the Civil War, <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bleeding_KansasBleeding Kansas occurred, which pretty well put to bed any ideas that slavery would be addressed peacefully. The proponents of slavery made it perfectly clear that they were willing to do anything and everything possible to preserve their institution. Handing them a check wasn’t going to resolve that.

    Way I see it, losing 600,000 troops to liberate a single slave, even if Lincoln did everything he could to avoid making it about slavery (if my house was surrounded by slave states, one hostile and one thinking about it, I’d tread softly, too) is an excellent bargain.

    I think the vast majority of those 600,000 men would be outraged at your suggestion.

    Even though you’re including the CSA casualty totals in there, no, I don’t think so. The majority of troops on both sides were volunteers, after all. World War-style draft cards were still a ways away, along with the infrastructure necessary to properly conduct such a system. Most totals I’ve seen suggest only 10-15% of all troops were actual conscripts, though record keeping was all over the map in those days, and volunteering for a less strenuous post before you were drafted into the line was as valid of a strategy in 1861 as it was in 1961. Of course, poor record keeping would do far more harm to a conscription system than good, so there you go.

    Have you walked in their shoes? Were you dragged out of your home by conscription (at the point of a gun) and marched off to death (at the point of a gun)?

    Clearly not, otherwise we wouldn’t be able to argue with each other. Then again, neither were they – if they were, they would’ve just deserted at the first opportunity or walked to the west somewhere. I’ll also note that it’s remarkably poor strategy to place unreliable men who don’t want to die for your cause at the front line (i.e. where they’re most likely to die) – not only do they have the nasty habit of running at the first available opportunity, but guns and ammunition aren’t cheap. It’s better to keep them in the rear, unarmed, where they can be watched and where they won’t do any damage.

    In other words, rest assured, the vast majority of those that died in battle did so as willingly as anyone else can that dies in battle.

    I’m sorry but I find that comment of it being a ‘bargain’ just plain repugnant. You can’t enslave (and eventually murder) a free man in order to free a slave. Book recommendation: “Emancipating Slaves, Enslaving Free Men”, by libertarian author Jeff Hummell.

    Sure you can. The Civil War proved conclusively that you could do just that. Now, whether you should or not is a different story. For what it’s worth, I’m sure the current descendants of former slaves that take their freedom for granted (for good or ill) are glad that they have the opportunity to do so, as opposed to their great-great-…-grandparents, who were born slaves and died slaves, never to experience a moment of free agency in their lives, who expected their children and grandchildren to suffer through the same.

    As I said earlier, yes, if there’s a way to free slaves or increase freedom without killing a bunch of people, you bet I’m in favor of that. The Civil War, however, occurred during a time when the slave-owning class had made it perfectly clear that they were willing to defend their “institution” at the point of a gun, whether that gun was in Kansas, Harper’s Ferry, or any of the Civil War battlefields that populate our country. Given a choice between letting a bunch of unarmed, uneducated slaves struggle for freedom on their own over several generations and conscripting some Yankees, training them, and equipping them for battle, I know which choice I’d make.

  82. Robert Capozzi

    95 dc, always pleased to see Ls standing up to the groupthink, plumb line view of the Confederate Elite Insurrection. Weathering charges of “Lincoln apologist” and “centralizer” can be draining, but I would note that the plumb liners seem to be — slowly– recognizing that their unqualified support for the Insurrection has, ahem, some holes in it. They have made adjustments in their dogma, as they — USED TO claim the Insurrection had “nothing” to do with slavery, an obviously absurd claim.

    The notion of one slave (by law) is interesting, but highly speculative. The Insurrection sought to continue to continue to enslave millions.

    I’m going to put your construct in the “poetic license” bin.

  83. JT

    David: “I just want to make it plain that, at least in my mind, conscripting a few hundred thousand formerly free individuals at the point of a gun and sacrificing the remainder of their lives in the service of the state over the course of four years is vastly preferable to letting a single person be born as a slave, live as a slave, and ultimately die as a slave, never to experience freedom.”

    Easy to say when you don’t have to be one of the people forced to die for that person. Lucky you.

    David: “For what it’s worth, given a choice between sacrificing 600,000 lives to free a single slave and not sacrificing a single life to free a billion slaves, well, hey, it’s not a hard choice. I don’t like killing conscripts, I just really don’t like slavery.”

    Even if I granted your premise that other people’s lives are to be bargained with to achieve a laudable social goal, there weren’t a billion U.S. slaves or anything approaching that. I don’t even know if there were a billion people on Earth back then.

  84. David Colborne

    JT:

    Easy to say when you don’t have to be one of the people forced to die for that person. Lucky you.

    Easy to say when you don’t have to be one of the people born into servitude, forced into labor for your master through your entire life, deprived of all education save that necessary to service your master, fathering children that will suffer the same fate, then ultimately discarded like common livestock. Or, if you were a woman, all that was mentioned previously, along with fulfilling whatever sexual fantasies that popped into your master’s head during your prime childbearing years.

    You were saying?

    David: “For what it’s worth, given a choice between sacrificing 600,000 lives to free a single slave and not sacrificing a single life to free a billion slaves, well, hey, it’s not a hard choice. I don’t like killing conscripts, I just really don’t like slavery.”

    Even if I granted your premise that other people’s lives are to be bargained with to achieve a laudable social goal, there weren’t a billion U.S. slaves or anything approaching that. I don’t even know if there were a billion people on Earth back then.

    My message is getting lost in the metaphors I’m using to deliver it, so let me see if I can make myself plainer:

    Since the Civil War ultimately led to the elimination of slavery in the United States, I think the cost in human lives, liberty, treasure, and suffering was worth it. I would still think it was worth it if it cost twice as much. I would not complain, however, if it instead cost half or a tenth as much.

    @97: Yes, I’m prone to chronic bouts of “poetic license”. I try to use it to make a point; some days it goes better than others.

  85. JT

    Your message was plain the whole time.

    But I wasn’t the one saying it’s worth it to me to force OTHER people to fight and die for a social goal. You were. If it were you, or your woman, or your children, maybe you’d at least feel torn about that. But you don’t have to face that, right? So lucky you.

  86. JT

    Somehow other countries eliminated slavery without making a calculation about at what point sacrificing other people’s lives were worth it. I wouldn’t know how to calculate the value of a human life myself.

  87. Marc Montoni

    From Independent Institute:

    Independent Institute Research Fellow Joseph R. Stromberg discusses one causal factor that often gets short shrift in public discourse (although he cites many historians who support his analysis): interest groups with material, rather than ideological, stakes in promoting the war.

    Antislavery, Stromberg writes, “was one of many themes generally serving as the stalking horse for more practical causes.” The Republican Party Platform of 1860, for example, focused less on antislavery grievances than on proposals designed to benefit northeastern financial and manufacturing interests and Midwestern and western farmers­policies that would have become harder to implement if southern states were allowed to secede. Lest he overgeneralize, Stromberg hastens to add that northern trading and manufacturing interests that bought from the suppliers of southern cotton­“the petroleum of the mid-nineteenth century,” as he puts it­were aware that they would face severe disruptions if war broke out.

    In a post on The Beacon, Independent Institute Research Editor Anthony Gregory argues that April 12, 1861, also marks the date of the federal government’s repudiation of the Founders’ vision of the American republic and the birth of Big Government. “The war ushered in federal conscription, income taxes, new departments and agencies, and the final victory of the Hamiltonians over the Jeffersonians…. Slavery could have been ended peacefully, to be sure, but ending slavery was not Lincoln’s motivation in waging the war­throughout which this purely evil institution was protected by the federal government in the Union states that practiced it, and during which slaves liberated from captivity by U.S. generals were sent back to their Southern ‘masters.’”

    “Civil War and the American Political Economy,” by Joseph R. Stromberg (The Freeman, April 2011)

    “The Regime’s 150th Birthday,” by Anthony Gregory (The Beacon, 4/12/11)

    “The Real Abraham Lincoln: A Debate,” an Independent Policy Forum featuring Harry V. Jaffa and Thomas J. DiLorenzo (5/7/02)

    “The Civil War: Liberty and American Leviathan,” an Independent Policy Forum featuring Henry E. Mayer and Jeffrey Rogers Hummel (11/14/99)

    “The Bloody Hinge of American History,” by Robert Higgs (Liberty, May 1997)

  88. Robert Capozzi

    102 MM, yes, I can say that I’ve given the revisionist L line on the Confederate Elite Insurrection due consideration, and I find it unpersuasive. There were a number of motives behind the events.

    Which ones were most salient? For me, the salient motive of the attempt by some states to secede was to maintain slavery as an institution. Many of the Ordinances of Secession cited explicitly the interests of the “slave-holding” states. The salient motive of the Union was to maintain Union and the rule of law. The CSA also was tired of the USA’s tax and trade policies. The USA wanted to continue those tax and trade policies. The CSA did believe the Constitution allowed for secession. Northern states had considered secession, too, so the power to do so was arguable. The PROCESS to do so was not codified. The Calhounian Elites of SC – a state where the MAJORITY of the residents were slaves – invented a process unilaterally. The plantation-states followed suit, and then the mid-South did as well.

    I don’t know any L who doesn’t recognize that a lot of dysfunctional precedents were set by the Lincoln Administration. Citing Lincoln’s dysfunctions does not prove that the Confederate Elites were empowered to secede, nor that they seceded in a proper procedural manner.

    Henrico County could tomorrow CLAIM TO secede from VA and the US. If they did so, I would not be surprised if Bob McDonnell sent in the National Guard to put down the insurrection. If Henrico County did so because some there wanted to re-institute chattel slavery, I might volunteer for the National Guard. McDonnell may do things in the process of putting down the Henrico Insurrection that I would not support, but stopping the re-institution of chattel slavery would swamp other considerations for me.

    The revisionist L’s argument that slavery would have ended eventually is simply unsatisfying to me, and probably to most. Basing an argument on such speculation is very, very weak, IMO. It’s very, very easy to take the view that self-determination is supportable, but that the Confederate Elites insurrectionist attempt at “secession” was not supportable because of the very existence of slavery.

    I still don’t understand why some Ls insist on re-fighting the Civil War. I don’t read minds, sadly. It’s one thing to bust myths, another to oversimplify, cherry-pick facts, and then drape the LM in a Confederate flag. The likely outcome is to infuriate and alienate The Normals, and attract The Haters. Why do this?

  89. Michael H. Wilson

    Cappozi writes I still don’t understand why some Ls insist on re-fighting the Civil War. I don’t read minds, sadly. It’s one thing to bust myths, another to oversimplify, cherry-pick facts, and then drape the LM in a Confederate flag. The likely outcome is to infuriate and alienate The Normals, and attract The Haters. Why do this?

    Mr. Cappozi I had a grandparent about four generation or maybe five ago who apparently was burned to death in his barn by Northern troops, so maybe I gotta gripe. But focusing on this issue does nothing to solve today’s problem, so ignore it and move on.

  90. JT

    Robert has introduced the Civil War before, Mark, contrary to him saying he doesn’t understand why some Libertarians insist on arguing about it. But it’s unfair to say he has introduced it into every conversation. I read IPR everyday, and I think that’s a rare occurrence.

  91. Robert Capozzi

    Marc and JT, yes, I sometimes bring the Insurrection of 1861 up to illustrate a point, as I did in this case. This thread’s headline includes an exponent of L revisionism, Rockwell. His blog is highly influential in the LM, and the subject of “secession” and the CSA are frequent subjects of discussion there.

    I happen to disagree with a lot of L revisionism, although not all of it. I happen to believe that the politics of that subject hurts the cause of liberty in the here and now, as it (probably unfairly) associates Ls with haters.

    That’s my perspective. Others may disagree. That Rothbardian revisionist worldview and ante in the public square COULD assemble like-minded masses from the far right and far left to assemble a vanguard for liberty that challenges at the most fundamental levels the status quo. Personally, I don’t align with that approach, and I don’t think it’s likely to be effective, now or ever.

  92. Marc Montoni

    Kirkpatrick Sale: “The great myth that the Union was fighting for a high moral cause, the elimination of chattel slavery and freedom for four million oppressed people torn from Africa, was ultimately a very convenient falsehood that served Northern ends later on in the war, particularly in distorting world opinion so that neither England nor France, though they might have had some allegiance to the cause of independence, were able to take the side of the Confederacy. But even then, the ultimate welfare of black Americans and their peaceful economic and social integration into white American society was never, but to a tiny few – and certainly not to Lincoln or his government – a moral (or even political) principle even thought much less expressed. The deep racism of the American North, though the victors would try to go on to forget it, was as dark a stigma against the Union as anything it would project on the South.”

    Carol Moore said: John Blake writing at CNN lists four reasons [why] “we’re still fighting the Civil War” — i.e., parallels to that time: The disappearance of the political center; How much power should the federal government have? (Nullification, states’ rights and secession are issues once again); Unleashing the dogs of war (Civil war lasted longer than expected, like Iraq and Afghanistan); The president as dictator (Obama seen as one, just as Lincoln was – and both usurped power)… He quotes an [sic] historian who writes people haven’t come to a conclusion because they can’t deal with the past of slavery. But I think perhaps the historian and John Blake can’t deal with the fact that the federal government has made us all slaves.

  93. Marc Montoni

    Mr. Cappozi I had a grandparent about four generation or maybe five ago who apparently was burned to death in his barn by Northern troops, so maybe I gotta gripe.

    I live in the area of the Shenandoah Valley where civilians were the targets of a war criminal, and the echoes of what happened still run deep. I had no relatives here then; in fact I was raised a northern liberal and most of my ancestors from that period were American Indian or Irish, and were generally Connecticut Yankees. Two of my ancestors apparently were soldiers in the Union military. In addition, the earliest of my lineage was Irish slave stock. And No, I don’t mean “indentured servants”, I mean “slave” (if you don’t know the conditions under which up to a million European so-called “indentured servants” lived, then you don’t know history).

    Nevertheless…

    What the Union did to the civilians — the vast majority of whom did not own a single slave — of the south, was by any definition a war crime. Shall we venerate mass murderer Vlad Ulyanov because he ‘liberated’ the peasants from the czar? Shall we venerate mass murderer Saloth Sar because he ‘liberated’ his country from the cruel monarch Sihanouk?

    But focusing on this issue does nothing to solve today’s problem, so ignore it and move on.

    Yeah, I’d prefer to focus on eliminating the injustices of today, too. Like the continued problem of slavery in the United States; both official and unofficial.

  94. Robert Capozzi

    110 mm, yes, I read the Sale piece today on LRC. As I’ve said, the Union’s primary motive was maintaining Union and the rule of law. Running Sale’s opinion on the Insurrection of 1861 is another ex of LRC’s apparent obsession with the subject.

    I see no evidence that the political has disappeared. To the contrary! The parameters of political debate has narrowed, if anything.

    BTW, “an historical” is correct, as is “a historical,” although many grammarians prefer “an,” since the h is
    silent.

  95. Thomas L. Knapp

    “Running Sale’s opinion on the Insurrection of 1861 is another ex of LRC’s apparent obsession with the subject.”

    My Scientific Wild-Ass guess is that LRC mentions the Insurection of 1861 less frequently than you do.

  96. Robert Capozzi

    114 tk, I’d swag it differently, but let’s say you are correct. So what?

    LRCers bring the Civil War (and nullification) up a lot. So do I.

    They seem to bring it up because they — I think — wish to advance a notion that central governments are especially injurious. I somewhat agree. I don’t, however, think that the example they use is effective analytically or rhetorically, as the Civil War led to many deaths and to the end of chattel slavery…a very mixed bag, in my book.

    I’d prefer to not associate the LM with revisionism, conspiracy theories, birtherism, trutherism, etc. My tiny role on this stage is to challenge fringy ideas that have some traction in the LM. And to challenge “radical” Ls with even more radical inquiry.

    It comes easily to this method actor, since I’m the most radical L I know! 😉

  97. MK

    Reading through these comments has been a real education. Some of the people commenting read outside their blind spots and seem fair-minded. Some of those commenting here simply recite slogans from the Koch-funded stink tanks. I cannot call them “think tanks,” because they are not engaged in reasoning or analysis of “best policies,” instead they just produce propaganda.

    The fact of the matter is that one cannot be for “liberty” and also for wars that deprive others of their own liberty as regards their natural resources. The wars being fought right now are commercial enterprises.

    For those that ACTUALLY STUDY history, you will discover that the Rothschilds had two goals for any country that they wanted to “take over.” One was to create a standing military and two, was to create a central bank with debt-creating capabilities. Our Founding Fathers knew this and this is why they opposed a CENTRAL BANK AND A STANDING MILITARY.

    They knew that with those two things in place, the Roths or any other controlling banker could grow all powerful starting wars and funding the debt that goes with them..

    Obviously, the next step to enslavement is tying the people to income taxes to fund the non-stop wars and unlimited growth of the banksters behind it all.

    DO SOME HOMEWORK PEOPLE. The people enslaving you right now are Banksters not poor people as Ayn Rand and the Cato Institute would have you believe.

    I am appalled at the lack of real intellectual rigor here. Only a couple of people actually researched their facts. Others just made assertions that were patently untrue. (Like the one about Israel and foreign aid).

    MK

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