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patteeu
12-13-2007, 10:19 AM
The Taco Rons and the BucEyedPauls of the forum like to tell us how all of our problems with radical islamists are really our own fault because attacks like those of 9/11 are blowback caused by our "interventionist" foreign policy. What they don't consider are the positive results that have come as a direct result of these interventions and which must be weighed against any blowback that may have occurred (e.g. our support of Saddam Hussein during the Iran-Iraq war may well have prevented a hostile Iran from taking control of the oil fields in Iraq and from becoming the dominant player in that region of the world.). They also don't consider any unintended consequences of the neo-isolationism that they wish to impose. Surely they aren't naive enough to think their preferred foreign policy would be free from unintended consequences. Here is a great article discussing both sides of the blowback coin:

Reflections on Blowback (http://www.tcsdaily.com/article.aspx?id=121207A)

Some time back Republican candidate for President Ron Paul stirred up considerable debate by arguing that 9/11 was "blowback" for the United States' foreign policy toward the Muslim world over the past half century or so, going back to the CIA engineered coup in 1953 that ousted Iranian leader Mossadegh. The term blowback had earlier been used by Chalmers Johnson as the title of a book whose sub-title made Ron Paul's point even more aggressively: "The Costs and Consequences of American Empire." In both instances, blowback refers to the negative consequences of America's foreign policy that could presumably have been avoided if the United States had pursued a policy that avoided either imperialism (Johnson's term) or interventionism (Ron Paul's.)

The term "blowback" comes from the jargon of espionage: it originally meant the unintended negative consequences of a covert operation. By extension, blowback came to be used to apply to the unintended consequences of American foreign policy, including both covert operations, like the removal of Mossadegh, and quite open operations, such as stationing American troops in Saudi Arabia during the first Gulf War. But the concept of blowback remains morally ambiguous. For example, if a man robs a bank, and, as a result of his robbery, gets thrown in jail, we will say that the negative consequences, i.e., his time in jail, are the robber's just desserts, or, to use the vernacular, we might say that "he had it coming." Many critics of American foreign policy on the left, especially those who talk of American imperialism, belong to the "We had it coming" school in their analysis of 9/11. According to their perspective, imperialism is a self-evident evil, and those who engage in it must expect to suffer some kind of negative moral consequences. The underlying idea here goes back to the Greek historian Herodotus who sees history as a constant overtaking of hubris, or arrogance, by nemesis, or retribution. If Ron Paul meant that 9/11 was morally appropriate retribution for America's foreign policy, then it is little wonder that his statement has received so much verbal blowback.

But, as the Book of Job made clear once and for all, bad things also happen to good people. While Job's comforters kept insisting that Job must have committed some secret transgression in order to explain away his afflictions, the reader of the story has been clearly notified that this interpretation of events is false: Job, as we know, has done nothing wrong. But the same thing can be said of the professor at Virginia Tech who attempted to shield his students from being massacred by a madman with a gun. His heroic action got him shot to death. Was this, too, blowback?

Osama bin Laden claimed that 9/11 was revenge for our decision to station American troops in Saudi Arabia during the first Gulf War. But American troops were in Saudi Arabia not to steal their oil, but to keep Saddam Hussein from getting it. We were willing to risk the lives of American soldiers to protect the oil wealth of the Saudis, instead of risking their lives to seize this wealth for ourselves, as a genuine imperialist power would have done. So if Osama bin Laden can be believed, 9/11 was our reward for standing up to violent aggression. If this is blowback, then the death of the professor at Virginia Tech should also be judged as blowback, in which case the term blowback would refer to the unintended negative consequences of virtuous actions as well as those of vicious actions.

...

This brings us back to Ron Paul's remark. If the inherent complexity of the world exposes any foreign policy to the risk of blowback, then it would be absurd to criticize a nation's foreign policy simply because it led to unintended negative consequences. Furthermore, such criticism would be unwarranted in direct proportion to the degree that the behavior of other players on the world stage was unpredictable and inscrutable, since any factor that increases the complexity of a system makes it more difficult to manage intelligently. Given the fact that the behavior of radical Islam is on an order of unpredictability and inscrutability that eclipses all previous geopolitical challenges that our nation has faced, it is a utopian dream to imagine that the United States, as the world's dominant power, could possibly escape blowback by any course of action it tried to pursue. We are both damned if we do, and damned if we don't.

We may agree with Ron Paul that our interventionist policy in the Middle East has led to unintended negative consequences, including even 9/11, but this admission offers us absolutely no insight into what unintended consequences his preferred policy of non-intervention would have exposed us to. It is simply a myth to believe that only interventionism yields unintended consequence, since doing nothing at all may produce the same unexpected results. If American foreign policy had followed a course of strict non-interventionism, the world would certainly be different from what it is today; but there is no obvious reason to think that it would have been better.

If the concept of blowback is to serve any constructive purpose in our current debate over our future foreign policy, it must not be used to beat up those whose decisions turned out in retrospect to be wrong, but to remind us of the common lot of those sad creatures, known as human beings, who are constantly forced to deal with the future without ever being able to see into it.

Jenson71
12-13-2007, 10:43 AM
Osama bin Laden claimed that 9/11 was revenge for our decision to station American troops in Saudi Arabia during the first Gulf War. But American troops were in Saudi Arabia not to steal their oil, but to keep Saddam Hussein from getting it. We were willing to risk the lives of American soldiers to protect the oil wealth of the Saudis, instead of risking their lives to seize this wealth for ourselves, as a genuine imperialist power would have done. So if Osama bin Laden can be believed, 9/11 was our reward for standing up to violent aggression.

This article makes it sound like U.S. military presence left Saudi Arabia after the first Gulf War was over. But we know forces were stationed there much longer than 1991 (1 (http://www.globalsecurity.org/org/news/2003/030430-psab01.htm)). The article in my link says more than a decade. 12 years of presence.

And don't bin Laden's statements (1 (http://www.pbs.org/newshour/terrorism/international/fatwa_1996.html)) (2 (http://www.pbs.org/newshour/terrorism/international/fatwa_1998.html)) indicate this? The American military forces presence in the Holiest lands of Islam caused the anti-American sentiment?

BucEyedPea
12-13-2007, 10:50 AM
'Er, I never used the word "fault" that's your extrapolation. Blame, fault are low levels of responsibility...if they are responsibility at all. Paul refers to flawed policy that calls for adjustment just alike a CEO of a corporation would have to do.

The guy's article is not worth reading, once I saw the part where he claims that we were not on Saudi Soil to steal SA's oil. LMAO! Whoever made such a ridiculous claim? No one.

The same article is full of other twists on Paul as well as former head of bin Laden CT Unit has said such as " we had it coming." Last, Paul has never claimed to be a "libertarian." He says he's a Republican, that he's a Constitutionalist which is a fairly libertarian document.

Govt tends to make things worse than make things better in general to even a true conservative. Just like the War on Poverty and the War on Drugs. The same fate will meet the War on Terror. Govt is the problem, not the solution. IIRC correctly RR said similarly.

So I can't take this guy's input seriously.

patteeu
12-13-2007, 10:54 AM
This article makes it sound like U.S. military presence left Saudi Arabia after the first Gulf War was over. But we know forces were stationed there much longer than 1991 (1 (http://www.globalsecurity.org/org/news/2003/030430-psab01.htm)). The article in my link says more than a decade. 12 years of presence.

And don't bin Laden's statements (1 (http://www.pbs.org/newshour/terrorism/international/fatwa_1996.html)) (2 (http://www.pbs.org/newshour/terrorism/international/fatwa_1998.html)) indicate this? The American military forces presence in the Holiest lands of Islam caused the anti-American sentiment?

I don't know why you would interpret that passage in that way. I don't think it implies that we left after the first Gulf War was over at all.

The author is not denying that bin Laden's attacks may have been a reaction to our military presence in Saudi Arabia. He's pointing out that our presence in Saudi Arabia may have had positive as well as negative effects and that to the extent this is considered blowback, blowback can be a response to "virtuous actions as well as those of vicious actions".

BTW, it's very possible that bin Laden formulated his rationale for hating America after he determined that his movement needed a unifying demon to replace the vanquished Soviet Union rather than before.

patteeu
12-13-2007, 10:56 AM
'Er, I never used the word "fault" that's your extrapolation. Blame, fault are low levels of responsibility...if they are responsibility at all. Paul refers to flawed policy that calls for adjustment just alike a CEO of a corporation would have to do.

The guy's article is not worth reading, once I saw the part where he claims that we were not on Saudi Soil to steal SA's oil. LMAO! Whoever made such a ridiculous claim? No one.

The same article is full of other twists on Paul as well as former head of bin Laden CT Unit has said such as " we had it coming." Last, Paul has never claimed to be a "libertarian." He says he's a Republican, that he's a Constitutionalist which is a fairly libertarian document.

Govt tends to make things worse than make things better in general to even a true conservative. Just like the War on Poverty and the War on Drugs. The same fate will meet the War on Terror. Govt is the problem, not the solution. IIRC correctly RR said similarly.

So I can't take this guy's input seriously.

The article *is* a little too serious to be worth your time. I don't blame you for refusing to read it and give it thoughtful consideration.

BTW, I think it's safe to assume that Ron Paul *has* claimed to be a libertarian at one time or another given that he was their candidate for president in 1988.

Jenson71
12-13-2007, 11:00 AM
I don't know why you would interpret that passage in that way. I don't think it implies that we left after the first Gulf War was over at all.

I disagree, patteeu.

Osama bin Laden claimed that 9/11 was revenge for our decision to station American troops in Saudi Arabia during the first Gulf War.

A more correct statement would read "Osama bin Laden claimed that 9/11 was revenge for our decision to station American troops in Saudi Arabia during the first Gulf War and maintaining a presence there twelve years after the conflict ended."

Leaving the "maintaining" part out of it is an essential part of the problem.

patteeu
12-13-2007, 11:12 AM
I disagree, patteeu.



A more correct statement would read "Osama bin Laden claimed that 9/11 was revenge for our decision to station American troops in Saudi Arabia during the first Gulf War and maintaining a presence there twelve years after the conflict ended."

Leaving the "maintaining" part out of it is an essential part of the problem.

I agree that it would have been more clear with your amended sentence. I guess that since I'm fully aware of how long our troops were in Saudi Arabia I assumed that that's what the author meant. I can see how someone who isn't familiar with the situation might misread it, but he didn't say anything that implied that the troops were removed. Technically, he was accurate that the "decision" was made during the first Gulf War. Besides, it's not clear that removing the troops from Saudi Arabia after the end of the first Gulf War would have made any difference at all. They've been removed now but the threat persists.

In any event, we can agree to disagree about the most reasonable meaning of this passage, IMO, without invalidating the actual point of the article which is that blowback is a more complicated concept than Ron Paul supporters would lead us to believe. It has to be balanced against the good achieved by the actions that cause it and the net result has to be weighed against the entire impact of the alternative approach embraced by Paul (e.g. neo-isolationism) which would include different kinds of "blowback".

BucEyedPea
12-13-2007, 11:18 AM
The article *is* a little too serious to be worth your time. I don't blame you for refusing to read it and give it thoughtful consideration.
I did read it...a quick read to see if it would be worthwhile to pull me off of my Christmas cookie-baking.

BTW, I think it's safe to assume that Ron Paul *has* claimed to be a libertarian at one time or another given that he was their candidate for president in 1988.
No it's not. He was asked this exactly by, iirc Lou Dobbs and someone else on national tv. He denied it. So they brought up the fact that he ran as a libertarian. He admitted it. He did the opposite. He said exactly as i posted earlier. He implied being "fairly" libertarian by saying the Constitution was a "fairly libertarian" document. He also admitted, that his roots were in the Old Right.

Go eat some chocolate and smell some roses.
:p

Taco John
12-13-2007, 11:19 AM
The Taco Rons and the BucEyedPauls of the forum like to tell us how all of our problems with radical islamists are really our own fault because attacks like those of 9/11 are blowback caused by our "interventionist" foreign policy. What they don't consider are the positive results that have come as a direct result of these interventions and which must be weighed against any blowback that may have occurred (e.g. our support of Saddam Hussein during the Iran-Iraq war may well have prevented a hostile Iran from taking control of the oil fields in Iraq and from becoming the dominant player in that region of the world.). They also don't consider any unintended consequences of the neo-isolationism that they wish to impose. Surely they aren't naive enough to think their preferred foreign policy would be free from unintended consequences. Here is a great article discussing both sides of the blowback coin:

That's really an extraordinary statement. That's really an extraordinary statement, as someone who watched the attack of Sept. 11, that you invite 9/11 type events so long as there is enough positive gained otherwise from our unconstitutional and interventionist foriegn policy. I don't think I have ever heard that before and I have heard some pretty absurd stuff from neo-cons. I would ask the poster withdraw that comment and tell us that he didn't really mean that.

Taco John
12-13-2007, 11:21 AM
This article makes it sound like U.S. military presence left Saudi Arabia after the first Gulf War was over. But we know forces were stationed there much longer than 1991 (1 (http://www.globalsecurity.org/org/news/2003/030430-psab01.htm)). The article in my link says more than a decade. 12 years of presence.

And don't bin Laden's statements (1 (http://www.pbs.org/newshour/terrorism/international/fatwa_1996.html)) (2 (http://www.pbs.org/newshour/terrorism/international/fatwa_1998.html)) indicate this? The American military forces presence in the Holiest lands of Islam caused the anti-American sentiment?



you might find this link interesting, from the Saudi Prince...

http://archives.cnn.com/2001/US/10/11/rec.giuliani.prince/index.html

Jenson71
12-13-2007, 11:29 AM
In any event, we can agree to disagree about the most reasonable meaning of this passage, IMO, without invalidating the actual point of the article which is that blowback is a more complicated concept than Ron Paul supporters would lead us to believe. It has to be balanced against the good achieved by the actions that cause it and the net result has to be weighed against the entire impact of the alternative approach embraced by Paul (e.g. neo-isolationism) which would include different kinds of "blowback".

Right. But when we agree that it wasn't just "presence in Saudi Arabia during the Gulf War (period) and its good" and instead, "presence in Saudi Arabia for over 12 years and its good" I think the good becomes less than "we protected them from Iraqi aggression in the Gulf War."

It seems like we could stay in any country for twelve years and cause at least a little "good" - soldiers bringing economic development, a sense of security, etc.

How good was it that American military presence was stationd in the holiest lands of Islam?

patteeu
12-13-2007, 11:31 AM
That's really an extraordinary statement. That's really an extraordinary statement, as someone who lived through the attack of Sept. 11, that you invite 9/11 type events so long as there is enough positive gained otherwise from our unconstitutional and interventionist foriegn policy. I don't think I have ever heard that before and I have heard some pretty absurd from neo-cons. I would ask the poster withdraw that comment and tell us that he didn't really mean that.

:shake:

You continue to make the same mistake this article illustrates. You're exclusively focused on one aspect of a multi-aspect story. It's like cost-benefit analysis without factoring in the benefit and without comparing the results to a realistic cost-benefit analysis of the alternative. It's a pretty shoddy form of analysis.

patteeu
12-13-2007, 11:32 AM
Right. But when we agree that it wasn't just "presence in Saudi Arabia during the Gulf War (period) and its good" and instead, "presence in Saudi Arabia for over 12 years and its good" I think the good becomes less than "we protected them from Iraqi aggression in the Gulf War."

It seems like we could stay in any country for twelve years and cause at least a little "good" - soldiers bringing economic development, a sense of security, etc.

How good was it that American military presence was stationd in the holiest lands of Islam?

We didn't force ourselves on them. The Saudi government believed they were better off with us there until the very end of that 12 years.

But again, you're focusing on a minor side point and missing the actual point of the article. This was intended to be an example to illustrate a concept not evidence of the wrongness of Ron Paul's analysis. The article works equally well with your amended sentence. Even though I don't agree that it's necessary, I encourage you to read the article as if that sentence were amended in the way you suggest.

StcChief
12-13-2007, 11:49 AM
We didn't force ourselves on them. The Saudi government believed they were better off with us there until the very end of that 12 years.

But again, you're focusing on a minor side point and missing the actual point of the article. This was intended to be an example to illustrate a concept not evidence of the wrongness of Ron Paul's analysis. The article works equally well with your amended sentence. Even though I don't agree that it's necessary, I encourage you to read the article as if that sentence were amended in the way you suggest.
don't confuse them. they wanna believe it's all foreign policy blowback.

so how do you explain the Spain/London,France,Germany problems since 9/11....

it's all western countries that aren't islam so get the infidels.

Taco John
12-13-2007, 11:51 AM
:shake:

You continue to make the same mistake this article illustrates. You're exclusively focused on one aspect of a multi-aspect story. It's like cost-benefit analysis without factoring in the benefit and without comparing the results to a realistic cost-benefit analysis of the alternative. It's a pretty shoddy form of analysis.



I thought the article was pretty ****ing stupid. Basically, "you can't say interventionism is bad bacause we don't know if non-interventionism would produce the same results."

If I pay someone to shit on your doorstep, you're going to be pissed at me. If I pay someone to shit on your doorstep, and then take over your property in order to protect your doorstep from being shit on, what are you going to think about that? You might think, "how about you don't pay someone to shit on my doorstep in the first place and leave me the hell alone." Or perhaps you'll be happy that I'm there to protect your doorstep. Who knows.

The point is, Saddam became a problem in the ME because the US made him a problem. We're doing the same thing in Pakistan. We prop up dictators, then invade other countries under the guise of "protecting" them from the dictators that we've propped up. It's moronic.

BucEyedPea
12-13-2007, 11:58 AM
We didn't force ourselves on them. The Saudi government believed they were better off with us there until the very end of that 12 years.


People are not their govt!

That's more true over there than here.
Which brings me to the other part of their complaint, puppet govts that don't reflect the people in those countries. Even the so-called moderate Arab govts by our standards, like Jordan, Egypt and SA support the idea of an Israeli state no matter how grudgingly... but their people don't. This holds true for their other policies whereby the people see their govt and even culture as under US influence too much. An infidel culture at that. So leaving troops on their land, is just so in your face about it.

People are not their govt!

BucEyedPea
12-13-2007, 12:05 PM
don't confuse them. they wanna believe it's all foreign policy blowback.

[quote]so how do you explain the Spain/London,France,Germany problems since 9/11....
The occupation of Iraq by coalition members Spain and Great Britain.

Germany sent troops to Afghanistan eventually as well and now their efforst asre stepping up against the Germans. They said they would. But their Muslim problem before 9/11 has to do with Turkish Muslims who has similar problems like France (below). Eventhough Turkey is our ally.

France's problem's are different...their multi-culturalism, immigration policies, welfare stats and lack of assimilation by Arabs....but some of this also goes back to their former colony Algiers who they conquered and occupied.

The West has been meddling in the ME for some time now,especially since the discovery of black gold. This interventionism goes back much earlier. The worst culprits were Great Britain and France with a their betrayals on promises in WWI with the Sykes-Picot agreement.

StcChief
12-13-2007, 12:10 PM
The occupation of Iraq by coalition members Spain and Great Britain.

Germany sent troops to Afghanistan eventually as well and now their efforst asre stepping up against the Germans. They said they would. But their Muslim problem before 9/11 has to do with Turkish Muslims who has similar problems like France (below). Eventhough Turkey is our ally.

France's problem's are different...their multi-culturalism, immigration policies, welfare stats and lack of assimilation by Arabs....but some of this also goes back to their former colony Algiers who they conquered and occupied.

The West has been meddling in the ME for some time now,especially since the discovery of black gold. This interventionism goes back much earlier. The worst culprits were Great Britain and France with a their betrayals on promises in WWI with the Sykes-Picot agreement.

shoulda left them in 9th century where they wanna be.
Abusing/raping their women, children, camels.
let 'em trade no value crap amongst themselves in their little ecomony. an Island world.

Establish Jewish homeland in Europe and be done with it.

BucEyedPea
12-13-2007, 12:14 PM
shoulda left them in 9th century where they wanna be.
Abusing/raping their women, children, camels.
let 'em trade no value crap amongst themselves in their little ecomony. an Island world.

Establish Jewish homeland in Europe and be done with it.

Well, you've finally come around. Who you hang with is important in life.
But they do not necessarily abuse their women, any more than western men have done.

Read Mending Wall by Frost.

patteeu
12-13-2007, 12:26 PM
I thought the article was pretty ****ing stupid. Basically, "you can't say interventionism is bad bacause we don't know if non-interventionism would produce the same results."

If I pay someone to shit on your doorstep, you're going to be pissed at me. If I pay someone to shit on your doorstep, and then take over your property in order to protect your doorstep from being shit on, what are you going to think about that? You might think, "how about you don't pay someone to shit on my doorstep in the first place and leave me the hell alone." Or perhaps you'll be happy that I'm there to protect your doorstep. Who knows.

The point is, Saddam became a problem in the ME because the US made him a problem. We're doing the same thing in Pakistan. We prop up dictators, then invade other countries under the guise of "protecting" them from the dictators that we've propped up. It's moronic.

I realize that you're committed to your ideology, but that doesn't make your analysis any more thorough. Do you intend to claim that neo-isolationism would have absolutely no unintended consequences?

BucEyedPea
12-13-2007, 01:03 PM
Pat two-valued logic B&W doesn't work in our world. No one is claiming that there cannot be a threat developing on despite our fp. Look at the Soviet Union...although you could pin that on FDR to some degree as we had an ally in WWII that were not honorable. And even England in the early days of our republic were impressing soldiers into their navy; England and France still had their eyes on parts of America. But then they were colonialists which died out. Being involved in too many areas or having a mercantilist ( we need their resources so we can process and resell elsehwere) that depends on the state to make war for those resources just increases the odds in a very insane world.

patteeu
12-13-2007, 01:36 PM
Pat two-valued logic B&W doesn't work in our world. No one is claiming that there cannot be a threat developing on despite our fp. Look at the Soviet Union...although you could pin that on FDR to some degree as we had an ally in WWII that were not honorable. And even England in the early days of our republic were impressing soldiers into their navy; England and France still had their eyes on parts of America. But then they were colonialists which died out. Being involved in too many areas or having a mercantilist ( we need their resources so we can process and resell elsehwere) that depends on the state to make war for those resources just increases the odds in a very insane world.

I don't know what you are calling two value logic here.

What would he unintended consequences have been if Ron Paul's neo-isolationism had been followed since 1935? What would they be if we adopted his policy beginning in 2009?

BucEyedPea
12-13-2007, 01:40 PM
No one can answer that pat. Unless, you had a time-machine. I think an educated guess is that we woulda still had a Soviet Empire seeking expansion but we'd not have had a conflict with the ME. Now whether or not oil would be sold in Euros or Dollars I don't know. But I think it's reasonable to assume, we'd be involved in less conflicts.

patteeu
12-13-2007, 04:22 PM
No one can answer that pat. Unless, you had a time-machine. I think an educated guess is that we woulda still had a Soviet Empire seeking expansion but we'd not have had a conflict with the ME. Now whether or not oil would be sold in Euros or Dollars I don't know. But I think it's reasonable to assume, we'd be involved in less conflicts.

I agree with you that no one can answer those questions. The problem I see is that Ron Paul and his followers almost never acknowledge that those questions exist. Whether it was Nazi Germany, Imperial Japan, or The Soviet Empire, someone would have taken advantage of the opportunity afforded to them by a militarily isolated US. We might not have had conflict with ME Islamists, but we may have become dependent on German or Soviet control of ME oil. We may well have never become a super power. We may have never become a global manufacturing or technology leader. OTOH, we may have created peace on Earth by modeling peaceful trade and coexistance. Who knows?

The point of all this is that the existence of blowback alone isn't enough to justify or condemn any particular foreign policy approach because every approach is going to have unintended consequences and it's very difficult if not impossible to evalute whether blowback would/will be better or worse under a different approach.

Taco John
12-13-2007, 04:25 PM
I realize that you're committed to your ideology, but that doesn't make your analysis any more thorough. Do you intend to claim that neo-isolationism would have absolutely no unintended consequences?


I intend to claim that a Washingtonian foriegn policy would have the consequences that Washington beleived that they would have. I intend to claim that the spirit of the Monroe Doctrine is the best course for America, regardless of the unintended fallout that might occur overseas - and that whatever those consequences are, America will be better equipped to handle them than in the war weary state we are in now.

banyon
12-13-2007, 04:30 PM
I intend to claim that a Washingtonian foriegn policy would have the consequences that Washington beleived that they would have. I intend to claim that the spirit of the Monroe Doctrine is the best course for America, regardless of the unintended fallout that might occur overseas - and that whatever those consequences are, America will be better equipped to handle them than in the war weary state we are in now.

:spock: Do you realize that the Monroe Doctrine was a doctrine of interventionism?

BucEyedPea
12-13-2007, 04:37 PM
We might not have had conflict with ME Islamists, but we may have become dependent on German or Soviet control of ME oil.
But then we may not have either. Since we have one of the biggest markets ww and wealth to pay for it, then I don't think this is a very real issue. We traded with the allegedly dreadful Ottoman's and Russians for years prior to the WWs.

We may well have never become a super power.
There is nothing wrong with that though. We would have been more like the Swiss, which I think is a more logical outcome.

We may have never become a global manufacturing or technology leader.
I don't see what this has to do with foreign policy. We became these things due to our limited govt and freedom, the most on the planet which unleashed the productivity and creativity or our people. As someone who claims to be libertarian, even with a small "l", I fail to understand you taking on this pov. And we are no longer a global manufacturing leader, that's being passed over to China, courtesy of our govt.

OTOH, we may have created peace on Earth by modeling peaceful trade and coexistance. Who knows?
The Swiss model shows that was more likely imo.

The point of all this is that the existence of blowback alone isn't enough to justify or condemn any particular foreign policy approach because every approach is going to have unintended consequences and it's very difficult if not impossible to evalute whether blowback would/will be better or worse under a different approach.
No. Entangling alliances increase blowback. It's simple logic. If there's a 140 conflicts going on in the world at any given time, take one side we automatically have a new enemy. Particularly if we occupy them. Empires are subject to more attacks because they are resented. We should just handle our own real enemies.

Taco John
12-13-2007, 04:42 PM
:spock: Do you realize that the Monroe Doctrine was a doctrine of interventionism?



How do you figure that a doctrine that says that the US stays neutral in the wars between European powers is an interventionalist doctrine?

Maybe you're thinking about the Bizarro Monroe Doctrine?

BucEyedPea
12-13-2007, 04:47 PM
Maybe you're thinking about the Bizarro Monroe Doctrine?
That's when Teddy Roosevelt added his corollary to it...that was interventionism based on those govts merely being corrupt.

Taco John
12-13-2007, 04:52 PM
That's when Teddy Roosevelt added his corollary to it...that was interventionism based on those govts merely being corrupt.


I had figured...

banyon
12-13-2007, 04:54 PM
How do you figure that a doctrine that says that the US stays neutral in the wars between European powers is an interventionalist doctrine?

Maybe you're thinking about the Bizarro Monroe Doctrine?


As BucEyedPea would say "do your research".




...oh wait, I forgot. I try to actually answer questions when I make claims about things.

Anyway, you've got part of the Monroe Doctrine right, but you left out the interventionist part.

At the proposal of the Russian Imperial Government, made through the minister of the Emperor residing here, a full power and instructions have been transmitted to the minister of the United States at St. Petersburg to arrange by amicable negotiation the respective rights and interests of the two nations on the northwest coast of this continent. A similar proposal had been made by His Imperial Majesty to the Government of Great Britain, which has likewise been acceded to. The Government of the United States of America has been desirous by this friendly proceeding of manifesting the great value which they have invariably attached to the friendship of the Emperor and their solicitude to cultivate the best understanding with his Government. In the discussions to which this interest has given rise and in the arrangements by which they may terminate the occasion has been judged proper for asserting, as a principle in which the rights and interests of the United States are involved, that the American continents, by the free and independent condition which they have assumed and maintain, are henceforth not to be considered as subjects for future colonization by any European powers....
It was stated at the commencement of the last session that a great effort was then making in Spain and Portugal to improve the condition of the people of those countries, and that it appeared to be conducted with extraordinary moderation. It need scarcely be remarked that the result has been so far very different from what was then anticipated. Of events in that quarter of the globe, with which we have so much intercourse and from which we derive our origin, we have always been anxious and interested spectators. The citizens of the United States cherish sentiments the most friendly in favor of the liberty and happiness of their fellowmen on that side of the Atlantic. In the wars of the European powers in matters relating to themselves we have never taken any part, nor does it comport with our policy so to do. It is only when our rights are invaded or seriously menaced that we resent injuries or make preparation for our defense. With the movements in this hemisphere we are of necessity more immediately connected, and by causes which must be obvious to all enlightened and impartial observers. The political system of the allied powers is essentially different in this respect from that of America. This difference proceeds from that which exists in their respective Governments; and to the defense of our own, which has been achieved by the loss of so much blood and treasure, and matured by the wisdom of their most enlightened citizens, and under which we have enjoyed unexampled felicity, this whole nation is devoted. We owe it, therefore, to candor and to the amicable relations existing between the United States and those powers to declare that we should consider any attempt on their part to extend their system to any portion of this hemisphere as dangerous to our peace and safety. With the existing colonies or dependencies of any European power we have not interfered and shall not interfere. But with the Governments who have declared their independence and maintained it, and whose independence we have, on great consideration and on just principles, acknowledged, we could not view any interposition for the purpose of oppressing them, or controlling in any other manner their destiny, by any European power in any other light than as the manifestation of an unfriendly disposition toward the United States. In the war between those new Governments and Spain we declared our neutrality at the time of their recognition, and to this we have adhered, and shall continue to adhere, provided no change shall occur which, in the judgment of the competent authorities of this Government, shall make a corresponding change on the part of the United States indispensable to their security.

The late events in Spain and Portugal show that Europe is still unsettled. Of this important fact no stronger proof can be adduced than that the allied powers should have thought it proper, on any principle satisfactory to themselves, to have interposed by force in the internal concerns of Spain. To what extent such interposition may be carried, on the same principle, is a question in which all independent powers whose governments differ from theirs are interested, even those most remote, and surely none more so than the United States. Our policy in regard to Europe, which was adopted at an early stage of the wars which have so long agitated that quarter of the globe, nevertheless remains the same, which is, not to interfere in the internal concerns of any of its powers; to consider the government de facto as the legitimate government for us; to cultivate friendly relations with it, and to preserve those relations by a frank, firm, and manly policy, meeting in all instances the just claims of every power, submitting to injuries from none. But in regard to those continents circumstances are eminently and conspicuously different. It is impossible that the allied powers should extend their political system to any portion of either continent without endangering our peace and happiness; nor can anyone believe that our southern brethren, if left to themselves, would adopt it of their own accord. It is equally impossible, therefore, that we should behold such interposition in any form with indifference. If we look to the comparative strength and resources of Spain and those old Governments, and their distance from each other, it must be obvious that she can never subdue them. It is still the true policy of the United States to leave the parties to themselves, in the hope that other powers will pursue the same course....

patteeu
12-13-2007, 06:52 PM
But then we may not have either. Since we have one of the biggest markets ww and wealth to pay for it, then I don't think this is a very real issue. We traded with the allegedly dreadful Ottoman's and Russians for years prior to the WWs.


There is nothing wrong with that though. We would have been more like the Swiss, which I think is a more logical outcome.


I don't see what this has to do with foreign policy. We became these things due to our limited govt and freedom, the most on the planet which unleashed the productivity and creativity or our people. As someone who claims to be libertarian, even with a small "l", I fail to understand you taking on this pov. And we are no longer a global manufacturing leader, that's being passed over to China, courtesy of our govt.


The Swiss model shows that was more likely imo.

On the one hand you say that our status as one of the biggest markets in the world would make everything work out all right if the Soviets or the Nazis had taken control of ME oil, but then you agree that we might never have become a super power. Don't you think it's also possible that we might not have developed into the economic powerhouse we've become either? Particularly if the Soviets or the Nazis had prevented us from tapping into ME resources. Who knows what would have happened if we'd have taken nonintervention to Paulian extremes. No one, including you.


No. Entangling alliances increase blowback. It's simple logic. If there's a 140 conflicts going on in the world at any given time, take one side we automatically have a new enemy. Particularly if we occupy them. Empires are subject to more attacks because they are resented. We should just handle our own real enemies.

That's an example of faith, not simple logic. Neo-isolationism is a false god. George Washington was President of a country that was geographically isolated and weak. If he were around today, leading the world's most powerful nation in a much smaller world, I seriously doubt that he'd embrace the same foreign policy doctrine. You Ron Paul folks cling to a past that is even more distant in time and circumstance than that to which the Amish cling. Compared to the Paulish, the Amish are the Jetsons.

BucEyedPea
12-13-2007, 07:16 PM
On the one hand you say that our status as one of the biggest markets in the world would make everything work out all right if the Soviets or the Nazis had taken control of ME oil, but then you agree that we might never have become a super power.

Not at all, and not if you check your history. We became an economic power first, which allowed us to become a superpower; to be a decisive player in two ww's. It was not the other way around. I'm very surprised that you as a self-proclaimed "l"ibertarian would make such a statist claim. Read the "Mainspring of Human Progress" It's one the first and most basic intro books on free-market, limited govt and liberty.

I have a graph on our economic growth from the early days of the republic right up through today. Don't have time to dig it out right now....I was going to put it in the Fed Reserve thread as it shows a Central Bank is irrelevant to our economic growth and prosperity. I got it from an economics professor that I wrote to recently.

And don't forget people thought whale oil would be gone too.

But there is a bell-curve with empire, eventually it spreads a nation too thin, become too expensive to defend and then it dies out. Act like the British Empire die out like it too.

Don't you think it's also possible that we might not have developed into the economic powerhouse we've become either? Particularly if the Soviets or the Nazis had prevented us from tapping into ME resources. Who knows what would have happened if we'd have taken nonintervention to Paulian extremes. No one, including you.
Nope. Not if you understand markets. That's the basis of libertarianism. Necessity leads to alternatives; is the mother of invention. One many never know exactly what that alternative would have been, but that it does come.

That's an example of faith, not simple logic.
No it is not. It is based on how markets perform. You're just not a real libertarian since you're advancing and defending mercantilism.

Neo-isolationism is a false god.
So is worshipping statism, govt and thus war. Aka neo-fascism. ( since you keep insisting on using your epithet. )

Anyhow, I'm done with this argument as it's just circular at this point. If I don't post anymore on it, don't think I agree with your love of govt and force to secure resources.

Iowanian
12-13-2007, 07:36 PM
Patteau,

Don't waste your time with meager facts vs Bukakeyedpea.

patteeu
12-13-2007, 08:05 PM
Not at all, and not if you check your history. We became an economic power first, which allowed us to become a superpower; to be a decisive player in two ww's. It was not the other way around. I'm very surprised that you as a self-proclaimed "l"ibertarian would make such a statist claim. Read the "Mainspring of Human Progress" It's one the first and most basic intro books on free-market, limited govt and liberty.

Yes, you're right, we were an economic power, but I'm not sure we can be confident we'd have become the dominant economic power that we in fact did become. And if Germany had been allowed to swallow up Europe into a German Empire, the balance of economic power may not have progressed as favorably as it did after we put a stop to German expansion.

Nope. Not if you understand markets. That's the basis of libertarianism. Necessity leads to alternatives; is the mother of invention. One many never know exactly what that alternative would have been, but that it does come.


No it is not. It is based on how markets perform. You're just not a real libertarian since you're advancing and defending mercantilism.


So is worshipping statism, govt and thus war. Aka neo-fascism. ( since you keep insisting on using your epithet. )

Anyhow, I'm done with this argument as it's just circular at this point. If I don't post anymore on it, don't think I agree with your love of govt and force to secure resources.

Markets are great as long as there isn't a powerful hand distorting them. Nazi or Soviet control of ME oil could have easily become a significant distortion in the global oil market just as the economy of the world was growing dependent on it. We would have been fine for a while using domestic sources, but eventually we would have been forced to look for foreign sources to keep our economy growing.

But all of that is speculation anyway and drifts away from the point. The point is that you don't know what kind of blowback you'll generate by abandoning allies and leaving power vacuums in several corners of the world that will just invite the most militarily powerful regional players to rush to fill the voids. And you also don't know how to quantify the benefits we've drawn from the actions that you look back on as sources of the blowback that bothers you.