BT et C

Friday, September 28, 2007


Blake Dvorak of Real Clear Politics amuses and sort of enlightens in a piece called "Ron Paul Country", but makes what seems like a blunder to me, one that is based on a common misunderstanding:

As much as many Republicans might want out of the United Nations, most would balk at abandoning Israel to the mullahs, or Taiwan to the Chinese. In either case, it is not terrorists reacting to some real or imagined slight by the "Great Satan," but sovereign states whose belligerence is checked only by American power.

It is this talk of "abandoning" our allies to which a non-interventionist takes exception. Why look further than Dvorak's two examples? There aren't any US troops in Israel or Taiwan

He is correct that American power is checking belligerent states; he is incorrect to suggest that military power is the only mechanism, or even in these two cases the relevant mechanism, of doing so. Non-interventionists believe that in most cases military interference -- or even presence -- is counterproductive.

Non-interventionists of this stripe are, so far -- and thank God -- apparently in control of our Israel & Taiwan stances.

NB: I'm not a military policy expert by any means; please correct if I'm drastically wrong about something here.

Friday, September 07, 2007

A Pet Peeve

The respectable and intelligent Hugh Hewitt has some interviews from the Texas Straw Poll, and I think they're great.

One note, though, about one of Hewitt's lines of questioning: he asks nearly everyone whether
-They want Dr. Paul to run as an independent if he fails to get the GOP nomination
-Whether they would support the GOP nominee if it's not Dr. Paul
-How they'd feel if they didn't get behind the GOP nominee, and Hillary "consequently" wins.

As a sometime Green, I have heard this line before. It was used to try to guilt Nader supporters into abandoning their candidate so that Gore could beat Bush.

The offensive assumption in this line of questioning is that some candidate -- by virtue of belonging to a "major party" -- has a right to my vote, and I have to defend my decision to give it to someone else. Sorry, but I find this abhorrent.

If Ron Paul is not the Republican Party's nominee, and runs as an independent, I become the GOPs political opponent. I am one of their obstacles; they have to try to defeat my candidate, by winning me and others over.

They may think that they have a right to my support because I'm "conservative", but they're just wrong. Giuliani does not have a right to my vote because I'm Catholic, and Hillary does not have a right to my vote because I'm a woman.

Fine, I'm not a woman; you get the idea though.

GOP: Run someone who can win. If you don't, you will lose and it will not be Ron Paul's fault.