With ISIS all but defeated and al-Qaeda and its allies all but defeated in Ghouta, what is the justification for the US military to still be illegally occupying 30 percent of Syrian territory? And why is the Pentagon building a big new base so close to Syria's oil fields?
With the impending fall of East Ghouta to Syrian government forces, former President Obama's project of supporting jihadist rebels in hopes of overthrowing Assad seems to be near death. Will Trump be wise enough to finally change Obama's disastrous policy?
15 Years Ago...The Failed Iraq War Began
15 Years Ago...There Was Another Option
Fifteen years ago today, the US launched its "shock and awe" attack against Iraq. The war was based on lies and propaganda, it cost trillions, and it left perhaps a million dead. To date no one has been punished for this disaster. Have we learned our lesson not to listen to neocon lies? Hardly!
By Chris Rossini
Those who advocate government power view people very differently from those who champion the ideas of liberty.
Advocates of government power seek to shield you from opposing ideas. You're not supposed to even know that they exist. The names Hayek, von Mises, or Rothbard are never to come across your stream of thoughts.
If, in modern times, your thought stream is increasingly tied to a social media "feed," then those names are to be tweaked out of the algorithm.
Your "feed" will be scrubbed nice and clean of any unapproved thoughts. Think of it as the modern version of book burning.
Advocates of liberty, on the other hand, are not afraid of opposing ideas. Go ahead and pick up a book by Marx, or Keynes, or Bernie Sanders, or anyone else.
Read all of them!
It's not a threat to Liberty, but rather a part of it.
You have the natural liberty to read whatever and whoever you want, even if it means reading authors who despise individuality and freedom.
You're 100% responsible for your life.
Your thoughts...Your beliefs....Your convictions....They're all yours!
Of course, the advocate of Liberty will try to persuade you to see the folly in Marxism, Keynesianism, and "Democratic Socialism," but you're the judge as to which side you come down on.
You're not the property of the libertarian. The libertarian is not your shepherd, making sure that you stay within the wired fence.
You belong to you.
Advocates of government power don't see it this way. In their eyes, you're 100% their responsibility. They have fashioned themselves as masters of your domain. They'll set up the wired fence (or electronic fence, or "feed") and your job is to stay within it. They'll watch over you from birth until death and will make sure that you're safe and secure.
Of course, the ideas of Liberty are like kryptonite to them. If you were to discover that you're the master of your own fate, that throws a monkey wrench into the whole operation.
You're free to obey, in their eyes.
And so, they must protect you from the reality that is yourself.
In their reality is where you belong.
Now get back to your approved "feed".
Or, as the libertarian would offer as an alternative suggestion:
By Ron Paul
President Trump’s recent cabinet shake-up looks to be a real boost to hard-line militarism and neo-conservatism. If his nominees to head the State Department and CIA are confirmed, we may well have moved closer to war.
Before being chosen by Trump to head up the CIA, Secretary of State nominee Mike Pompeo was one of the most pro-war Members of Congress. He has been militantly hostile toward Iran, and many times has erroneously claimed that Iran is the world’s number one state sponsor of terror. The truth is, Iran neither attacks nor threatens the United States.
At a time when President Trump appears set to make history by meeting North Korean leader Kim Jong-un face-to-face, Pompeo remains dedicated to a “regime change” policy that leads to war, not diplomacy and peace. He blames Iran – rather than the 2003 US invasion – for the ongoing disaster in Iraq. He enthusiastically embraced the Bush policy of “enhanced interrogation,” which the rest of us call “torture.”
Speaking of torture, even if some of the details of Trump’s CIA nominee Gina Haspel’s involvement in the torture of Abu Zubaydah are disputed, the mere fact that she helped develop an interrogation regimen that our own government admitted was torture, that she oversaw an infamous “black site” where torture took place, and that she covered up the evidence of her crimes should automatically disqualify her for further government service.
In a society that actually valued the rule of law, Haspel may be facing time in a much different kind of federal facility than CIA headquarters.
While it may be disappointing to see people like Mike Pompeo as Secretary of State and Gina Haspel as the head of the CIA, it shouldn’t be all that surprising. The few areas where President Trump’s actions are consistent with candidate Trump’s promises are ripping up the nuclear deal with Iran and embracing the torture policies of President George W. Bush. Candidate Trump in late 2015 promised to bring back waterboarding “and a whole lot worse” if he became president. It seems that is his intention with the elevation of Pompeo and Haspel to the most senior positions in his Administration.
We should be concerned, of course, but the real problem is not really Mike Pompeo or Gina Haspel. It is partly true that “personnel is policy,” but it’s more than just that. It matters less who fills the position of Secretary of State or CIA director when the real issue is that both federal agencies are routinely engaged in activities that are both unconstitutional and anti-American. It is the current Executive Branch over-reach that threatens our republic more than the individuals who fill positions in that Executive Branch. As long as Congress refuses to exercise its Constitutional authority and oversight obligations – especially in matters of war and peace – we will continue our slide toward authoritarianism, where the president becomes a kind of king who takes us to war whenever he wishes.
I am heartened to see some Senators – including Sen. Rand Paul – pledging to oppose President Trump’s nominees for State and CIA. Let’s hope many more join him – and let’s hope the rest of the Congress wakes up to its role as first among equals in our political system!
Did Russian president Vladimir Putin order a hit on a former double agent that he allowed to retire in London rather than remain in a Russian prison? It seems like a stretch, but the UK government is using the attack to ratchet up anti-Russia sentiment. Who may have done it? Why?
Prior to becoming President, Donald Trump accurately called the U.S. economy a “big, fat, ugly bubble.” That hasn’t changed, other than the big fat bubble being even uglier! Homelessness is skyrocketing. What's going on? Ron Paul talks about government policies that create an even bigger homeless problem in the U.S.
New York Times bestselling author of "Skin in the Game" Nassim Nicholas Taleb joins today's Liberty Report to discuss the "interventionistas" who produce chaos everywhere in the name of "doing good." What does it mean to have "skin in the game"? Tune in!