Monday, March 21, 2011

The True Anti War Advocates

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Birthplace of Independent Conservatism


As an independent conservative the Editor in Chief of Rational Nation USA believes it is past time to revisit the origins of the "anti war" movement in America. As we move forward keep in mind it was the Conservatives of prior era's that were the true anti war advocates.

 During the Vietnam War era of American history the progressives, recognizing the American public sentiment against the Vietnam war, belatedly jumped on board. Every since the 1960s the progressives have, disingenuously , been claiming the anti war mantra as their own.

To be a true conservative today, which put another way is to say a classical liberal in the vein of our founding fathers, is to be opposed to interventionist foreign policy. And make now mistake, the incursion into Libyan's domestic affairs is exactly an act of interventionist policy that our founding fathers would have been adamantly opposed, irrespective of what the Neo ons might have you believe.

During my early research I happened across an article published at the Encyclopedia Britannica Blog. It is, at least  IMHO, a well written and accurate representation of the true, disingenuous  (and clueless) progressive movement. Excerpt from the article below.
Maybe antiwar organizers assumed that they had elected the man who would stop the war. After all, Barack Obama rose to power on the basis of his early opposition to the Iraq war and his promise to end it. But after two years in the White House he has made both of George Bush’s wars his wars.

In October 2007, Obama proclaimed, “I will promise you this, that if we have not gotten our troops out by the time I am president, it is the first thing I will do. I will get our troops home. We will bring an end to this war. You can take that to the bank.” Speaking of Iraq in February 2008, candidate Barack Obama said, “I opposed this war in 2002. I will bring this war to an end in 2009. It is time to bring our troops home.” The following month, under fire from Hillary Clinton, he reiterated, “I was opposed to this war in 2002….I have been against it in 2002, 2003, 2004, 5, 6, 7, 8 and I will bring this war to an end in 2009. So don’t be confused.”

Indeed, in his famous “the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow” speech on the night he clinched the Democratic nomination, he also proclaimed, “I am absolutely certain that generations from now we will be able to look back and tell our children that . . . this was the moment when we ended a war.”

Today, however, he has tripled President Bush’s troop levels in Afghanistan, and we have been fighting there for more than nine years. The Pentagon has declared “the official end to Operation Iraqi Freedom and combat operations by United States forces in Iraq,” but we still have 50,000 troops there, hardly what Senator Obama promised
.

Progressives such as Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry Truman, and Lyndon B. Johnson have been responsible for the majority of the wars Americans were engaged in during the 20th century. Dwight D. Eisenhower I remind you refused aid the the French in their conflict the Vietnamese rebels. It was only during the later year of his administration that he authorized "technical support." Future progressive Democratic presidents,chose to escalate the war that ultimately resulted in over 50 thousand American soldiers losing their live for a cause that today remains \remains at best questionable.

Now for some historical background. In the interest of time I shall highlight pertinent data on Rational Nation USA and link back to the source for full informational disclosure.

Prior to World War I
Wilson advanced rapidly as a conservative young professor of political science and became president of Princeton in 1902.

His growing national reputation led some conservative Democrats to consider him Presidential timber. First they persuaded him to run for Governor of New Jersey in 1910. In the campaign he asserted his independence of the conservatives and of the machine that had nominated him, endorsing a progressive platform, which he pursued as governor.

He was nominated for President at the 1912 Democratic Convention and campaigned on a program called the New Freedom, which stressed individualism and states' rights. In the three-way election he received only 42 percent of the popular vote but an overwhelming electoral vote. (Click here to read Wilson's 1913 inauguration speech.)

Wilson manoeuvred through Congress three major pieces of legislation. The first was a lower tariff, the Underwood Act; attached to the measure was a graduated Federal income tax. The passage of the Federal Reserve Act provided the Nation with the more elastic money supply it badly needed. In 1914 antitrust legislation established a Federal Trade Commission to prohibit unfair business practices.

Another burst of legislation followed in 1916. One new law prohibited child labour; another limited railroad workers to an eight-hour day. By virtue of this legislation and the slogan "he kept us out of war," Wilson narrowly won re-election. (Click here to read Wilson's 1917 inauguration speech.)

But after the election Wilson concluded that America could not remain neutral in the World War. On April 2, 1917, he asked Congress for a declaration of war on Germany. (Click here to read Wilson's conscription proclamation of May 1917)
In looking back we can easily see it was the "progressive" that got the best of Wilson and involved the US in a European war in which we had no business. And it was the "progressive" in him that established the first institutionalized concept of "A One World Order."

Read the full text.

Prior to World War II:
In fact, given that many of these attacks came from some of the vanguards of 1940s liberalism, they often tend to sound strangely similar to those which Senator Joseph McCarthy would employ against his opponents in the early 1950s. The Nation, for example, called Taft and his allies in Congress "super-appeasers" whose policies "should set the bells ringing in the Kremlin," while Averell Harriman claimed that "Taft would execute the foreign policy of Stalin." Schlesinger agreed, noting with satisfaction how Taft’s opposition to the North Atlantic Treaty was met "with cordial approval by Andrei Vyshinski."

It was not until the 1960s and 1970s, when many historians became disillusioned by the American experience in Vietnam, that Taft’s foreign policy came up for serious reevaluation. That reappraisal began with Henry W. Berger, a Cold War revisionist who in 1967 rejected the idea that Taft was an "isolationist." Taft was rather a "conservative nationalist at odds with the struggling attempts of liberal American policy-makers to fashion a program in the postwar years." Newspaper columnist Nicholas von Hoffman agreed, calling Taft’s policies "a way to defend the country without destroying it, a way to be part of the world without running it," while historian Ronald Radosh called him a "prophet on the Right." Russell Kirk and James McClellan in 1967 praised him as well, arguing that he consistently pursued "the principle of national interest."

What, then, were the underlying philosophical principles behind Taft’s foreign policy? Was Taft misunderstood and underappreciated by his contemporaries, or were later historians misguided in attempting to rehabilitate him? The following essay will attempt to answer these questions by examining precisely what it was that Taft hoped to achieve through foreign policy, and what measures he took to do so.

Foremost among the principles that guided Taft’s foreign policy was a strong faith in the exceptionalism of America and its people. Although he was educated at Yale and Harvard, Taft’s belief in basic American values was one that he shared with most Midwesterners of his time, particularly those of his native Cincinnati. Like them, he was convinced that the United States was based on certain noble ideas that placed the nation far above the rest of the world. Of these ideas, individual liberty was for him the most important; indeed, he proclaimed early and often that the "principal purpose of the foreign policy of the United States is to maintain the liberty of our people." He held that there were three fundamental requirements for the maintenance of such liberty-an economic system based on free enterprise, a political system based on democracy, and national independence and sovereignty. All three, he feared, might be destroyed in a war, or even by extensive preparations for war.

Perhaps the best example of his belief in individual liberty was his consistent opposition to the draft. Taft believed that the keys to success in life were "persistence and thoroughness," but that the draft "cruelly cuts into a young man’s career, deprives him of his freedom of choice, leaves him behind in the competitive struggle with his fellows, and turns society into a garrison state." 6

Taft, unlike many of his contemporaries, was always quick to point out the costs to economic and personal freedom involved in any particular course of action. "Every policy," he claimed, "should be studied in the light of the regulations which it may involve, and in the light of its cost in taxation." War by its very nature tended to concentrate power in the hands of the central state, and thus threatened the cherished American ideals of limited government and separation of powers." In 1939 he made the dour prediction that war would lead to "an immediate demand for arbitrary power, unlimited control of wages, prices, and agriculture, and complete confiscation of private property." In the months before Pearl Harbor, he repeated his belief that if the U.S. entered World War II, "before we get through with that war the rights of private property in the United States will be to a large extent destroyed."

Not unlike the Tea Party of today the above confirms the true patriotism of an American Conservative Icon, Senator Robert Taft, a believer in the founding ideals of this nation and the Constitution of the United States. He was right then. He remains right today.

Read the full text.

Today:
Here we are in the third day of precisely the sort of military intervention the Left used to describe as a crime against the Constitution, the American people, international order, or humanity itself. The people who rewrote George Bush’s months of painstaking buildup to the invasion of Iraq as a “rush to war” just watched the most liberal President in modern history go from zero to “weapons free” in a matter of days. The American people were not consulted, or even addressed. The President was living it up in Brazil when the operation began, and has made a point of avoiding questions from the media.


Of course there will be collateral damage, strategically exaggerated by the enemy. American forces are in harm’s way, and there may be casualties. No clear objectives have been stated by our political leadership – the only straight talk we’re getting is from the military brass, which the MoveOn.org Left has long denounced as liars, or even traitors, when they answered to a Republican Commander-In-Chief. We’re enter the early stages of an expensive commitment that could last for years, as “no fly zones” usually do. If Operation Odyssey Dawn transitions to a full-on offensive aimed at regime change, after all the robust assurances it will not do so, President Obama will have “lied us into war.”


How’s the anti-war movement taking all this? So far, we’ve heard only a few meaningless chirps from hardcore types like Dennis Kucinich and Ralph Nader, who have called for the impeachment of President Obama, much as they wanted to impeach President Bush. Kucinich has a printout of Obama’s 2007 declaration that “the President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation” clutched in a white-knuckled grip. As Captain Kirk once observed of the villainous Khan, at least they’re consistent.


The rest of the Left is dealing with extreme cognitive dissonance by using their favorite coping mechanism: displacement. Michael Moore spent the weekend Tweeting insults at George W. Bush. A dejected Andrew Sullivan of the Atlantic has taken to blaming Hillary Clinton and John McCain. There were a few anti-war rallies over the weekend, but attendance was sparse, and media coverage virtually nonexistent.


Many liberals understand their vicious opposition to Bush’s Iraq policy was an empty, hypocritical tactic, deployed as a weapon in a larger political struggle. They’ll feel no need to remain intellectually consistent. Not all of them can pivot on a dime, however, and some on the Left were already unhappy with Obama. As Operation Odyssey Dawn continues, it will be too much for them to endure in silence.


That will move Obama’s political fate into the hands of the media, which will have to decide if it wants to cover for him by taking down the antiwar movement. In addition to minimal coverage, the press can also refuse to do its part in constructing a mythology of antiwar protests as an idealistic, grassroots movement, something they worked very hard to do during the Bush years.
Read the full text here.

The history of anti war sentiment can be traced back to conservative roots. To individuals that understood the intellectual integrity of our founding fathers as well as their wisdom. The founders understood the need for a strong national defense against possible foreign aggression. They equally understood the dangers of foreign entanglements that did not serve the best interests of our nation.

Today because there is little to no difference between the RINO Republican party {GWB}, and the progressive Democratic party {BHO} this nation appears on a perpetual road to a war of some kind, with someone, for issues which are none none of our rightful concern or business.

Real conservatives have the opportunity to once again claim the high road against interventionist foreign policy. A road easily defended when based on a rational understanding of of what constitutes the justification for the use if military force. Whether we conservatives will or not is questionable. When the so called conservative republican party has nothing better to offer than this..:
Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona was critical of the president’s timetable for action in Libya, but said he is confident the American military will succeed.

“He (President Obama) waited too long, there is no doubt in my mind about it. But now, it is what it is,” McCain said in an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union” taped Friday. “We need now to support him and the efforts that our military are going to make. And I regret that it didn’t – we didn’t act much more quickly, and we could have.


... we should know we are in deep trouble.

Via: Memeorandum

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