Gary Johnson on CNN today: Trump is a “neo-isolationist”

From CNN’s YouTube channel, July 3rd, 2016 (video length: 8 minutes):

In an interview with Brianna Keilar, Libertarian Presidential Candidate Gary Johnson discuss increasing support for his campaign and Donald Trump.

CNN also published an article relating to Johnson’s interview today, written by Daniella Diaz, entitled “Gary Johnson: Trump says ‘racist’ things and should be disqualified from presidency.” An excerpt:

Washington (CNN)Libertarian presidential nominee Gary Johnson said Donald Trump says “racist” things and should be disqualified from becoming president for saying that he is “looking at” replacing employees of the Transportation Security Administration who are Muslim and wear hijabs.

“He has said 100 things that would disqualify anyone else from running for president but doesn’t seem to affect him,” he told CNN’s Brianna Keilar in an interview aired Sunday on “State of the Union.” “It’s racist.”

Read the rest of Daniella Diaz’s article here.

37 thoughts on “Gary Johnson on CNN today: Trump is a “neo-isolationist”

  1. Jim

    It’s now being reported that the image with the star was created on 8chan, which ought to settle the question of intent on the part of the creator. Whether or not Trump picked up on the meaning is a separate question. But he he should have. After all, Trump assures us that he has “a very good brain,” and is “like a really smart person.”

  2. William Saturn

    Of course he knows what he’s doing. He knew what the reaction would be before he did it. He’s being intentionally provocative to highlight the insanity of political correctness. He’s done it before and he’ll do it again. He gets media attention for this, it allows his team to talk about political correctness, and it looks to the electorate as though he’s being treated unfairly for a very minor thing.

  3. Jim

    Thane Eichenauer – I’m going to challenge you to create a list – make it as long as you like, but at least 5 – of the most important foreign policy events over the last 15 years and the situations with the most potential over the next 4 years. For the past events, put down whether US policy was generally correct or generally wrong. Don’t worry about absolutes. For the future events, put down a general idea of what you’d like to see happen. Then match that against Donald Trump’s statements. For past events, use Trump’s position at the time the event occurred, not what he changed it to sometime later.

    From my observation, Trump takes the wrong side of foreign policy positions *at the time they take place* somewhere around 90% of the time. It’s only years later, after those events become disasters, that he sometimes takes the libertarian position. But he never learns from those mistakes.

  4. David Pratt Demarest

    Trump is just another greedy, unprincipled populist seeking the good life as a ruler – nothing more and nothing less. What you see is what you get – just another wannabe ruler going all out to win the big prize – the ability to leverage the power of government for personal aggrandizement. Trump is perhaps more “honest” but no better than his evil counterpart, Clinton2. I nominate Trump and Clinton2 as the King and Queen of Crony Capitalism. And Capitalism is not the problem. The real problems is the exacerbated cronyism inherent in our compulsory majority rule that exists solely for the benefit of the political elite and their cronies. The good news is that the nomination coronation of King Trump and Queen Clinton2 have opened the door for a crystal clear choice – Governors Gary Johnson and Bill Weld as the next president and vice president of the United States.

  5. Root's Teeth Are Awesome

    If Johnson called Trump a “neo-isolantionist,” then Johnson is either an idiot or a liar.

    An isolationist is a foreign non-interventionist. They’re identical. Yes, they are.

    The term isolationist was coined in the 1930s to identify someone who did not want the U.S. to be embroiled in yet another foreign war. A Good Thing. But isolationists were smeared for wanting to avoid taking sides in a foreign war.

    So now, libertarians fear being called isolationist. They prefer to be called non-interventionists. Well, whatever term you prefer, it’ll be smeared sooner or later.

    Isolationist does NOT mean someone who wants the U.S. to be an island that trades with no other nation, and has no relations with other nations. I’ve never read of anyone who advocates such a thing. Such “isolationists” are straw men. They do not exist. Thus, it’s pointless to denounce them. Certainly, Trump advocates no such thing.

    I was calling myself an isolationist long before I discovered the term non-interventionist, and I consider isolationist to remain an honorable term.

  6. Root's Teeth Are Awesome

    Unfortunately, neither Trump nor Johnson are isolationists. That’s too bad, because I want to vote for an isolationist.

  7. natural born citizen

    While Johnson’s attack on the libertarian foreign-policy position was certainly notable, just as notable from this interview was his proclamation that Hillary is not a crook and as innocent as a babe in the woods. Johnson is moving closer to Weld.

  8. Root's Teeth Are Awesome

    just as notable from this interview was his proclamation that Hillary is not a crook and as innocent as a babe in the woods.

    Thus Johnson signals that he is not the anti-Hillary. He only wants to take votes from Trump.

    Johnson is signaling to the MSM, Don’t worry, I won’t hurt Hillary. We’re on the same page. You can safely continue granting me free air time, while ignoring Jill Stein.

    In this election, when Americans are eager for something completely different, Johnson is aggressively selling himself as the same-old, same-old.

  9. Andy

    Uuuuugggggg!!!!! I just listened to the part where Johnson’s advisers told him he should support the TPP. Johnson needs some new advisers, some that are actually libertarians.

  10. Andy

    I never thought I would see the day when any Libertarian Party candidates speak fondly of Hillary Clinton.

  11. Ted Brown

    On the TPP, Cato Institute has come out marginally in favor of it, saying that by a hairbreadth, it is actually freer trade than we have now. It’s possible that Gary is following their lead.

  12. Andy

    This is yet another reason why I am not that big on the Cato Institute. Real libertarians do not support the TPP.

  13. Root's Teeth Are Awesome

    Don’t know who I’ll vote for in November. It won’t be for Johnson. It might be for no one. NOTA seems a principled choice this year, as so often.

  14. Andy

    Somebody give Gary Johnson Darryl Perry’s phone number and tell him to consult with Perry on issues. He will get better advice from Perry than any of his present political advisers are giving him on issues.

  15. George Phillies

    Given that Libertarians generally draw more heavily from Democrats than Republicans, more civil criticism of Clinton might be in order.

  16. Jim

    Root – Better call Merriam-Webster, because they seem to think that isolationism excludes diplomacy and trade.

    isolationism : a policy of national isolation by abstention from alliances and other international political and economic relations

  17. Jim

    The policy of “soft” criticism of Clinton is obviously strategic. They don’t praise her policies, just her character and dedication to civil service.

    What’s the goal? I don’t know. But I can guess.

    The lesser goal is to draw a distinction between how they more personally attack Trump (calling him ‘racist’, references to NAZI’s, calling him a ‘pussy’, etc. They don’t want to seem as if they are becoming Trump, by personally attacking everyone. So they go out of their way to be civil to Clinton.

    The greater goal is to temporarily unify the Democratic party. There are 4 ways Bernie supporters can break. Most will go to Clinton. Fewer will go to Stein. Fewer still will go to Johnson. And fewest will go to Trump. Rumors that Trump will get substantial support from Bernie supporters will never materialize on voting day.

    This poses a problem. Independents, in the polls, go to anybody but Trump and Hillary. When Stein is included in the polls, Johnson’s numbers drop, putting him further away from the necessary 15%. Johnson then has an incentive to want Stein excluded from the polls. Polling companies will exclude Stein if here numbers drop too low. Where is Stein’s support coming from? Many of them are ex-Bernie supporters. So Johnson is trying to temporarily heal the schism in the Democratic party in order to drop Stein out of the polling and secure all of the anti-Hillary/Trump vote. Once Stein is out of the polling, he can be more aggressive in attacking Hillary and break the ex-Bernie voters back off.

    All of this is in pursuit of a larger goal of permanently fracturing the Republican and Democratic parties, with the Libertarian Party as the primary beneficiary of party-less refugees. Weld has explicitly spoken about permanently breaking the Republican party in half, and it’s only a small leap to think they might have a similar goal with respect to the Democratic party. It’s an ambitious goal and needs a lot of luck. It also requires Johnson and Weld to soften the libertarian message a bit for easier digestion by the general public.

  18. Andy

    “Jim
    July 5, 2016 at 02:13
    The policy of ‘soft’ criticism of Clinton is obviously strategic. They don’t praise her policies, just her character and dedication to civil service.

    What’s the goal? I don’t know. But I can guess.”

    It is a really stupid strategy if you are actually trying to advance the cause of liberty, but a smart strategy if you are trying to help Hillary Clinton get elected.

  19. Jim

    Andy – What would be a better strategy? Keeping in mind the last 40+ years of spectacular failure at the federal level.

  20. Andy

    Sucking up to the establishment Democrat choice for President is not going to win us any votes or supporters, and if anything, will have the opposite effect.

    Better strategies would be to reach out to disaffected Bernie Sanders supporters, point out ways that Hillary has betrayed people on the left who care about peace and civil liberties, and to appeal to independents and non-voters who do not like Hillary or Trump.

  21. Jim

    Most Bernie supporters who don’t return to the Democratic fold are going to go to Stein, if given the option. Stein hurts Johnson in the polls. Your strategy ignores those two facts.

    Johnson can reach out to Bernie supporters only after Stein is removed as an option from the polls.

  22. robert capozzi

    Yes, it does seem that J/W are not speaking ill of HRC but do so of DJT. GJ seems to generally want to avoid personal attacks, and run a high-road campaign. My sense is that that’s how he rolls generally.

    DJT, however, as GJ has said, has said 100 things that would get other candidates eliminated. DJT’s ideas are so over the line that it’s impossible to avoid attacking him.

    There might also be a bit of a calculation that goes something like this: If they praise HRC and BHO, they keep getting high-level media. They allow themselves to be used by the media to attack DJT.

  23. RedPhillips

    Johnson is clearly trying to be the candidate with all the “sensible” “right” opinions and is playing to people who virtue signal on PC and consider their embrace of the conventional wisdom a point of pride. This may get him more votes than the LP candidate generally gets in this unusual election cycle where the two major party nominees have such high negatives, but it is not good for the LP brand in the long run, in my outsider opinion. Does the LP really want to be the party of conventional wisdom spouting status signalers?

  24. Root's Teeth Are Awesome

    Jim: Root – Better call Merriam-Webster, because they seem to think that isolationism excludes diplomacy and trade.

    Thanks for completely ignoring my point. Which was: I’ve never read of anyone who advocates such a thing. Such “isolationists” are straw men. They do not exist.

    So I acknowledged Merriam-Webster’s “smear” definition — but such people do not exist.

    Incidentally, Ayn Rand was wrong. The dictionary is not holy writ. While often instructive, they are biased works, written by biased people.

    But let’s play with your dictionary’s term. Do you think that Trump fits that definition of an isolationist? If not, do you think Johnson was lying? Does Johnson often lie? Or perhaps you think Johnson left himself an out by calling Trump a neo-isolationist, a term Johnson invented and thus can mean anything (since it’s likely not in the holy dictionary.)

  25. Jim

    Neo-isolationism is a word. Johnson didn’t make it up. The dictionary says it has been a word since the early 1950’s. It just means a revival of isolationism. Dictionary’s reflect words as used by the people who speak the language. At least, that’s how English language dictionary’s work because English is anarchic. A dictionary that doesn’t keep up with common word usage wouldn’t be in business long.

    Your point was not only that you’ve never heard of a true isolationist. Your other point, to which I responded, was that “An isolationist is a foreign non-interventionist. They’re identical. Yes, they are. The term isolationist was coined in the 1930s to identify someone who did not want the U.S. to be embroiled in yet another foreign war….Isolationist does NOT mean someone who wants the U.S. to be an island that trades with no other nation, and has no relations with other nations.”

    An isolationist is not the same as a non-interventionist, whether you’ve heard of a true isolationist or not. According to the definition of isolationism as “a policy of national isolation by abstention from alliances and other international political and economic relations” Trump partially fits. He certainly wants to curtail immigration, is a trade protectionist, and wants to break alliances. But, no, he is not a true isolationist, either, as he, at one time, supported the Iraq War, the overthrow of Qaddafi, an invasion of Syria, the assassination of Kim Jong Un, the pre-emptive bombing of North Korea, and issued the vague threat of eliminating Iran’s potential nuclear weapons program “by any means necessary.”

    Johnson was referring to Trump as an isolationist more in the way it was defined by Ron Paul – Donald Trump’s policies would work to isolate the US from the world.

  26. Thane Eichenauer

    Here in Arizona and also in Washington, DC the Republicans are of the belief that Libertarian candidates draw from Republicans more than Democrats. Last year the Republican legislature in league with the Republican governor passed a law that increased Libertarian ballot requirements in Arizona 23 fold.

    It might be that in states where there are more Democrats that Libertarian candidates draw more from the Democrat vote total (though as always the voters own their own vote).

    https://independentpoliticalreport.com/2016/07/ballot-access-news-arizona-libertarian-hearing-on-primary-ballot-access-moved-from-august-5-to-july-12/

    Gary Johnson seems willing to critique Donald Trump but unwilling to critique Hillary Clinton. On the face of it this seems like it works to the advantage of the Hillary Clinton campaign. Is this a gambit in order to capture more TV and media time knowing that 90% of the MSM favors Democrats?

  27. Thane Eichenauer

    robert capozzi comments: “DJT’s ideas are so over the line that it’s impossible to avoid attacking him.”

    To claim that is to assert that people have no free will. Gary Johnson could avoid attacking Donald Trump. He chooses not to. I don’t find that Donald Trump’s positions are so over the line that I must attack Trump instead of critiquing his positions. Additionally to claim that his positions are so over the line is itself an advocacy of political correctness.

  28. Thane Eichenauer

    Jim,
    Your suggestion sound like a good methodical process by which to evaluate Donald Trump. Given that the positions of Donald Trump are inconsistent any faith I have that Donald Trump may not take actions that I take issue with is half based on him not being Hillary Clinton and half based on what I see that Donald Trump seems to be more in favor of Joe America than Hillary Clinton (both are slim reeds). I believe that Hillary Clinton would continue with her past awful actions and positions.

    Another slim reed I base my Donald Trump statements on are Scott Adams columns.

    http://blog.dilbert.com/post/132408086396/why-donald-trump-will-ruin-the-world

  29. robert capozzi

    te: To claim that is to assert that people have no free will.

    me: Whether there is such a thing as free will is an interesting question. There does seem to be free will, I grant. But, frankly, I was overstating for effect. Sorry that was not obvious to you.

    te: Gary Johnson could avoid attacking Donald Trump. He chooses not to. I don’t find that Donald Trump’s positions are so over the line that I must attack Trump instead of critiquing his positions.

    me: We differ. Trumps racist and xenophobic views alone are stunning to me, and to apparently GJ. He’s Archie Bunker with money. The prospect of President Trump is profoundly frightening to me, and that as many support him as they have is really quite disappointing. He makes George Wallace look civilized.

    te: Additionally to claim that his positions are so over the line is itself an advocacy of political correctness.

    me: Glad that came through. I’m a big fan of civility and I strive to be as PC as possible, within reason.

  30. Andy

    Thane Eichenauer said: “Gary Johnson seems willing to critique Donald Trump but unwilling to critique Hillary Clinton. On the face of it this seems like it works to the advantage of the Hillary Clinton campaign. Is this a gambit in order to capture more TV and media time knowing that 90% of the MSM favors Democrats?”

    I’d wager because CFR member Bill Weld wants his buddy, and fellow CFR member, Hillary Clinton to be the next President.

  31. Root's Teeth Are Awesome

    Dictionaries have historically been biased with political definitions and bios. Dictionaries used to call Adolf Hitler a “fascist dictator” or “tyrant,” but Joseph Stalin they called a “Soviet statesman” or “General Secretary of the Soviet Union.” It’s been some decades since I checked, so I don’t know if that’s still true of those two.

    But the people who compile dictionaries are biased, like everyone else. And while their biases might not show with most words — defining an “apple” is non-controversial — their biases do crop up with controversial words.

    Journalists and academics are also supposed to be communicating objective truth, except that often they don’t. Ditto dictionary word usage panels.

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