February 03, 2003
Ron Paul

I heartily second Patrick's recommendation of this Texas Observer interview with US Rep. Ron Paul (R, TX). He's a nut, in my humble opinion, but he's a lot less scary than certain other Republican Congressmen from Texas that I could name, and unlike those selfsame scary men he actually lives by his stated principles.

Where have I heard this thought before?

TO: Why haven’t more people seen through this effort to link Hussein to the war on terrorism?

RP: It seems that those who advise the president, those who control foreign policy, need another war for various reasons: whether it has to do with the oil or this principle that we are such good people that we know what is best; our views should dominate. I think they believe it almost like a religion. What has happened is that they have been able to control the propaganda. Even if there are some in Washington who have questioned this–and many of them did question it–the propaganda has been so powerful. All [Congress] had to do was look at the polls and say, "Oh, the polls show that we must do this." I have told others, and I am convinced that if Bill Clinton was doing exactly what the president is doing today, I bet I wouldn’t be a lonely Republican. I bet I would have a lot of Republican supporters on my side.... But now it’s a Republican president, and he can do no wrong.

Oh, yeah, I remember: Pretty much everywhere in the left half of the blogiverse. Nice to know someone outside the tribe recognizes it, for all the good it'll do.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on February 03, 2003 to The great state of Texas | TrackBack

Some Republicans are only supporting war with Iraq because Bush is in office? Sure, that's true. By the same token some Republicans (certainly not me) withheld support for the bombing of Serbia because Clinton was in office. That kind of ardent partisanship exists on both sides.

Still, I wouldn't generalize all Republicans this way. This kind of partisanship exists on both sides... I'm sure many Democrats who supported war with Serbia are skittish about war with Iraq primarily because Bush is in office.

Posted by: Owen Courrèges on February 3, 2003 8:51 PM

It's hardly surprising the sometime Libertarian candidate for President has taken this foreign policy view -- in many ways he's much closer to the Lew Rockwell (and Patrick Buchanan) folks on foreign policy than the GOP mainstream.

I would concur with Owen that, yes, there is some partisanship on both sides, but I don't think that explains everything (Paul's just off on that assertion, but he's joined by folks like Paul Craig Roberts and Rockwell in making it).

There's an interesting piece in the New Yorker this week on the intelligence community and links between Al Qaeda/Iraq. There is a problem of imperfect knowledge, and that's no minor problem. I suspect we'll find evidence one way or the other after the liberation of Iraq is complete, which doesn't help decisionmakers much right now. If I had to make a judgment professionally, I'd go with the DoD guys though (and Codevilla may have a point as well). Opinions vary.

Posted by: Kevin Whited on February 4, 2003 9:05 AM

Um, so Ron Paul is a nut, except when you like his position du jour? Funny how that position happens to dovetail with the typical appeaser-of-evil position one finds epidemic in Liberal and DIMocRAT circles.

No, frankly, and this is a conservative Republican speaking, Ron Paul is a nut job pretty much all the time, and none more so than when he sounds like a DIMocRAT.

Posted by: Paul A'Barge on February 4, 2003 1:25 PM

What's the matter, you get bored over at the Greatest Jeneration or something? Sheesh.

Posted by: Charles Kuffner on February 4, 2003 1:28 PM