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Posts Tagged ‘Rand Paul’

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity : US to Iraq: ‘Vote All You Want, We’re Not Leaving!’

Posted by M. C. on January 14, 2020

Lead by example and demonstrate how free markets and peace benefit all. A “force for good” means not forcing others to bow to your will.

http://www.ronpaulinstitute.org/archives/featured-articles/2020/january/13/us-to-iraq-vote-all-you-want-we-re-not-leaving/

Written by Ron Paul

President Trump’s decision earlier this month to assassinate Iran’s top military general on Iraqi soil – over the objection of the Iraqi government – has damaged the US relationship with its “ally” Iraq and set the region on the brink of war. Iran’s measured response – a few missiles fired on an Iraqi base after advance warning was given – is the only reason the US is not mired in another Middle East war.

Trump said his decision to assassinate Gen. Qassim Soleimani was intended to prevent a war, not start a war. But no one in his right mind would think that killing another country’s top military leader would not leave that country annoyed, to say the least. Senators Mike Lee (R-UT) and Rand Paul (R-KY) said the Trump Administration’s briefing to Congress on its evidence to back up claims that Soleimani was about to launch attacks against the US was among the worst briefings they’d ever attended.

After initially claiming that Soleimani had to be taken out immediately because of “imminent” attacks he was launching against the US, Trump Administration officials including Secretary of State Pompeo and Defense Secretary Esper have been busy walking back those claims. Esper claimed over the weekend that he had not seen the intelligence suggesting an attack on US embassies was in the works. If the Secretary of Defense did not seen the intelligence, then who did?

No doubt the Iraqi leadership recognized these kinds of deceptions: the same kinds of lies were used to push the US into attacking their own country in 2003. So it should not have come as a big surprise that the Iraqi government met last week and voted that all foreign military personnel should leave Iraqi soil.

Then a funny thing happened when the Iraqi prime minister attempted to communicate to the US government the will of the Iraqi people through their democratically-elected officials. On Thursday Iraqi Prime Minister Mahdi phoned Pompeo to urgently request that Washington enact a US troop “withdrawal mechanism” in Iraq. American troops are in Iraq by invitation of the Iraqi government and the Iraqi government had just voted to revoke that invitation.

The State Department responded with a statement titled “The US Continued Partnership with Iraq,” in which it essentially said that the US would not abide by the request of its Iraqi partners because the US military is a “force for good” in the Middle East and that as such it is “our right” to maintain “appropriate force posture” in the region.

The US invaded Iraq based on Bush Administration lies and a million Iraqis died as a result. Later, President Obama ramped up the drone program and also backed al-Qaeda affiliated terrorists to overthrow the secular Syrian government. Obama also attacked Libya based on lies, leaving the country totally destroyed. Trump is assassinating foreign officials and threatening destruction of Iran.

And the State Department calls that a “force for good”?

The United States can be a true force for good, however. End the military occupation of the Middle East, end foreign military aid, stop using the CIA to overthrow governments. Allow Americans to travel and do business in any country they wish. Lead by example and demonstrate how free markets and peace benefit all. A “force for good” means not forcing others to bow to your will.


Copyright © 2020 by RonPaul Institute. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit and a live link are given.
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The Islamic Republic of Restraint – Antiwar.com Original

Posted by M. C. on January 9, 2020

The administration lied about the Iranian general’s mission that day in Baghdad; he was actually likely there for secret talks to ease tensions with Saudi Arabia. Talk about a counterproductive killing.

https://original.antiwar.com/Danny_Sjursen/2020/01/08/the-islamic-republic-of-restraint/

What if it’s Iran that’s avoided war?

Don’t buy the hype 1.0: Look, the administration, Fox News, and a Twitter army of Trumpsters are about to unleash a wave of propaganda. The president was right to assassinate Soleimani all along, they’ll say. The Iranian missiles fired on Tuesday night missed all American targets – perhaps on purpose – resulting in zero U.S. military casualties. Trump must’ve known the Iranians would flinch, we’ll be told. His hard line, his provocative escalation, was all part of a grand strategy – the master dealmaker strikes again!

That’s all balderdash! Remember: according to the most loyal Trumpeteers, every time the president’s rash actions don’t result in nuclear Armageddon he’s clearly a “stable genius” (his words). Now, that’s a pretty low bar, folks. We should expect better. Seems to me that Trump’s foreign policy is more aptly characterized, as William Hartung – of the Center for International Policy – coined it, the “P.T. Barnum strategy:” more show than substance. It goes both ways, of course, what with Iran potentially “retaliating” against the US for their own domestic consumption, whilst carefully avoiding American casualties.

The main problem with the Trump-as-genius argument is that, at best, he’s left in place an unacceptable status quo. Tensions remain unnecessarily high between the US and Iran – mainly due to Trump’s original sin: pulling out of the multinational nuclear deal that even American intelligence agencies assessed that Iran had adhered to. In fact, the execution of Soleimani may have only made matters worse. The administration lied about the Iranian general’s mission that day in Baghdad; he was actually likely there for secret talks to ease tensions with Saudi Arabia. Talk about a counterproductive killing. War could still break out at any moment. Both sides have mobilized and repositioned troops. Heck, a brigade of paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne Division is already on its way to the region. The two inessential adversaries remain on hair-trigger alert.

Now, at worst, Trump has only weakened the US position in the area. After all, right on the heels of the Soleimani assassination, Iraqi’s Parliament and Prime Minister officially called for the withdrawal of all US troops from the very country upon which Iran and America have been waging war of late. Naturally, in a fun twist on the widespread global understanding of national sovereignty, Defense Secretary (Incorporated) Mark Esper has emphatically declared that US troops “are not leaving Iraq.” International law, international shmaw – we’re America, and Trump is president.

Finally, lost in the sure-to-come “Trump was right” talking points will be a few other inconvenient facts:

  1. The president provided zero evidence to the public that Soleimani himself posed an imminent threat to US forces. We’re just supposed to trust the government? Really? After the mountain of lies fed to the people reference the 2003 Iraq invasion, CIA torture program, and Afghanistan (as shown in the oh-so-quickly forgotten Afghan Papers)? Count me out! What’s more, after a closed session congressional briefing on Wednesday, even some Republicans complained that they were given “no specific information” on any “specific” alleged “attack.” Now that’s fishy.
  2. Furthermore, the very legality of the strikes – and targeted assassinations in general – under domestic and/or international law was highly dubious.
  3. The constitutionality of the killing was also questionable. Yes, the president possesses Article II commander-in-chief powers, however, those ought to be used sparingly and only as a last resort. By design, the Founders placed the preponderance of martial decision-making in the hands of Congress. Trump isn’t alone here, as one executive after another has gradually stripped war-making authority from an all-too-willing, and complacent, legislative branch. What was particularly dangerous in this case, however, is that President Trump unilaterally committed an egregious, risky escalation – an act of war – that set all the pieces in motion for a potential regional conflagration, essentially leaving Congress and the People to pick up the pieces. He presented America with a perilous fait accompli.

So let’s not fall for the administration talking points or its loyal social media trolls’ undoubtedly absurd musings. The Soleimani operation was far from prudent and hardly a slam dunk. Don’t take my word for it: Republican Senators Rand Paul and Mike Lee told CNN Wednesday that the “way the whole thing went down” was “un-American and unacceptable.” I couldn’t agree more; we can do better!

Don’t buy the hype 2.0, either: No matter what the US Government has long claimed, Iran is not the world’s most dangerous state; nor is it really the globe’s greatest “state-sponsor of terrorism” – whatever the “T-word” even means anymore. Nor, contra the Mikes (Pompeo and Pence) – who seem genuinely intent on pursuing policies designed to sow the de rigueur chaos to bring forth their own insane hopes for the Rapture – would regime change in Iran accomplish much of anything or serve US or regional interests. These mad eschatological millenarians are deeply mistaken in their belief that Iran represents something uniquely evil in this world. They should take a hard look at their own diplomatic Facebook friends for exhibit A: Saudi Arabia.

In reality, from this historian’s “hatch,” it is demonstrable that time and again, since at least 1979, it was Iran – not the US – which showed greater restraint and helped avoid war. Consider just a few examples. After the CIA and MI6 overthrew a democratically elected Iranian prime minister in 1953 and installed the vicious dictatorial shah – whose security forces killed thousands – it took 25 years for the Islamic Revolution to kick off. When that rebellion overthrew the U.S.-armed and -backed shah, how did the young revolutionaries respond? Well, famously they snatched and long held 52 American embassy personnel hostage. Sure, this was an unacceptable violation of diplomatic sovereignty, but, as compared to the deaths of thousands of Iranian innocents, it was a relatively muted response. No hostages were killed, and, though it took far too long, all were eventually released.

Then, in 1980, when Iraq invaded and threatened to destroy Iran, the US openly backed Saddam Hussein’s aggressive regime. The US provided key intelligence in the form of satellite photos to the Iraqi Army, and granted Baghdad over $1 billion in economic aid. In all, after eight years of existential war, perhaps 500,000 Iranians died. To this flagrant US provocation, Iran did retaliate substantially: in 1983, the Iranian-backed Amal militia killed 241 US Marines in Beirut (where they shouldn’t have been in the first place), throughout the 1980s Hezbollah took several American journalists and Intel officials hostage in Lebanon, and its Saudi offshoot (allegedly) killed 19 US Airmen in the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing. None of this is defensible; still, comparable scale remains relevant. Iran never directly attacked United States military personnel or the American homeland, even though Washington had clearly enabled the devastation of the Persian nation.

Then, when after a US ship struck an underwater mine (no fatalities resulted) the American Navy – in Operation Praying Mantis – overtly sank the majority of the Iranian Navy in a one-sided sea battle. Then, during the same undeclared Persian Gulf maritime conflict, a US naval vessel even shot down a civilian Iranian airliner, killing 290 people. The commander, Captain Rogers, claimed his crew mistook the jet for an Iranian fighter, but even so the plane was fully in Iranian airspace.

Then, Vice President George H.W. Bush even refused to apologize for the shoot-down. He callously announced “I will never apologize for the United States – I don’t care what the facts are. … I’m not an apologize-for-America kind of guy.” Oh, and as for Captain Rogers – he was awarded the Legion of Merit. For all these immense, and deadly, provocations, Iran didn’t responded in any measurable way. So it was, in Tuesday night’s case of deja vu, that Tehran again showed remarkable restraint by appearing to retaliate without harming the hair on a single American’s head.

None of this is to say that Mr. Trump, if he shows relative restraint – and it appears he plans to, for now – doesn’t deserve some credit. He’s done it before. Months ago, after Iran shot down an unmanned American drone, Trump apparently shocked his own aides and backed away from military strikes. Whatever shred remains of the optimist inside of me likes to believe that – for all his PT Barnum posturing and absurd risky behavior – The Donald, unlike the John Boltons’ of the world, doesn’t actually want an outright war with Iran.

Still, overall, it must be Tehran that earns the gold star for restraint in this – and many past – instances. I mean, come on, an American drone blew away one of their national heroes, perhaps the third most powerful man in their sovereign government. The move was tantamount to war by any and all reasonable definitions. And how did they respond? With a sham, maybe symbolic, American-casualty-free missile strike. Now that’s self control.

All of which raises a profound opportunity for President Trump. Iran’s leadership has shown, once again, and quite profoundly, that they’ll eschew open war with the US and may even be open to détente, for reentry into the global community from which they’ve long been excluded (by America, it must be said). Trump, it seems, in spite of his bluster, fumbling, mad carelessness, and escalation, could still salvage a new “deal” with the Islamic Republic.

No doubt, mainstream liberals will hammer this author for even suggesting that all could work out in Trump’s favor – but it could! So, if our dear leader seizes this opening to pivot to diplomacy, to some degree of relational normalization, he’d come slightly closer to earning his self-styled sobriquet of “stable genius.” And, for my sins, I might even crack open The Art of the Deal

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Rise Of A Dictator | The Wall Street Journal, August 19, 1953

 

 

 

 

 

 

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EconomicPolicyJournal.com: Rand Paul Explains to John Stossel the Truth About Socialism

Posted by M. C. on January 5, 2020

https://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2020/01/rand-paul-explains-to-john-stossel.html

In conjunction with the release of Rand Paul’s new book, The Case Against Socialism, John Stossel interviewed Rand.

Rand’s book is excellent. I reviewed it here.

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David Stockman on What an Audit of the Federal Reserve Could Reveal

Posted by M. C. on January 4, 2020

The point is, inflation targeting is one of the greatest efforts at misdirection that a government agency has ever concocted. This gives them a license to constantly intervene and meddle in the financial markets—pointlessly fiddling with the whole price structure of debt and equity assets.

There’s about $1.5 trillion of excess reserves in the banking system.

So, they’re paying out to the banks upwards of $23 billion a year in order to keep excess funds on deposit at the Fed, rather than putting it to work in the macroeconomy.

How stupid is that?

https://internationalman.com/articles/david-stockman-on-what-an-audit-of-the-federal-reserve-could-really-reveal/

by David Stockman

International Man: Trump is calling for a weaker dollar and negative interest rates. What does this tell you about Trump’s understanding of economics?

David Stockman: It tells you that he has no understanding of economics at all!

I think Trump is not even a primitive when it comes to economic comprehension. His views are just plain stupid when it comes to exchange rates. He seems to think it’s some grand game of global golf, where the strongest player gets the lowest score.

What sense does it make tweeting as he did recently in attacking the Fed?

According to Trump, the US economy is so much better than the rest of the world’s economies, and therefore we should have the lowest interest rate as a result. It has nothing to do with economic logic or with principles related to sound money. I think he’s just thrashing about trying to create a warning that if things go badly, it’s the Fed’s fault.

The whole narrative on the economy is wrong…

Even John Maynard Keynes himself said that you ought to try to balance the budget and even generate a surplus at the top of the cycle.

We’re right in the middle of the worst kind of economic policy in my lifetime, anyway—going back to the 1960s.

Trump is completely clueless about how we got here, how he got here, and where we’re going…

International Man: The Fed recently said it could increase its tolerance for inflation before it considers raising interest rates. It would be a major policy shift. What’s really going on here?

David Stockman: I think what’s going on is that they’re looking for another excuse to capitulate to Wall Street next time it has a hissy fit because it believes the Fed owes them another shot of stimulus and more liquidity.

Let’s address the underlying issue now. The 2% inflation target is absurd to begin with. There is no historical or theoretical evidence to suggest that inflation at 2% is better for growth and prosperity than inflation at 1.5%, 1%, or even -1%.

This is just made up, just like the money they created that’s been snatched from thin air, adopted as official policy in January 2012.

It becomes a rolling excuse for running the printing press and accommodating both the politicians in Washington, D.C., who want low interest rates so that debts are cheap to finance and the gamblers on Wall Street who want low interest rates because they result in higher asset values and cheaper costs for carry trade speculators.

The idea that we haven’t had enough inflation as it’s measured by one indicator—the Personal Consumption Expenditure (PCE) deflator—is kind of crazy for two reasons.

First, there’s a lot of other inflation measures that say we easily achieved 2% inflation.

The 16% trimmed-mean CPI is a very handy tool. It has the same CPI data at the product code level as that in the regular CPI, but in order to smooth out the monthly figure, it takes out the lowest and highest 16% of individual prices.

It’s probably more accurate than CPI because it removes the outliers but puts them back in as soon as they reach the center of the distribution.

The trimmed-mean CPI has averaged 2% since January 2012. During the last 12 months, it’s reached 2.34%, way over the Fed’s 2% target.

There are lots of issues here…

International Man: There are increasing calls for central banks to combat climate change. The IMF, the European Central Bank, and several others have chimed in. What does this mean, and why are central bankers suddenly so keen on this topic?

David Stockman: This is beyond stupid. What could the central banks possibly do to help the global economies adjust to climate change? Climate change may or may not be happening, and if it is, it’s due to planetary forces that central banks have absolutely no power to impact or counteract…

International Man: If Rand Paul finally gets his audit of the Federal Reserve, what do you think they’ll find?

David Stockman: What he’s going to find is just more detail on the absurdities of what they’re doing already.

I think one that you would look into is this policy called Interest on Excess Reserves (IOER). They targeted that number at 1.55% right now. There’s about $1.5 trillion of excess reserves in the banking system.

So, they’re paying out to the banks upwards of $23 billion a year in order to keep excess funds on deposit at the Fed, rather than putting it to work in the macroeconomy.

How stupid is that?…

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END the FED Rally planned for OKC – Nationwide Nov 22nd ...

 

 

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How Bad Are Congressional Republicans?

Posted by M. C. on December 5, 2019

Economic liberty is the utopia that they keep promising to bring us, pending the higher priority of blowing up foreign peoples, jailing political dissidents, crushing the left wing on campus, and routing the Democrats. Once all of this is done, they say, then they will get to the instituting of a free-market economic system. Of course, that day never arrives, and it is not supposed to.

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2019/12/laurence-m-vance/how-bad-are-congressional-republicans/

By

The only conservative magazine that I regularly and religiously read is The New American, where I am a contributing columnist.

The New American does all Americans a great service by publishing “The Freedom Index: A Congressional Scorecard Based on the U.S. Constitution.” The Freedom Index “rates congressmen based on their adherence to constitutional principles of limited government, fiscal responsibility, national sovereignty, and a traditional foreign policy of avoiding foreign entanglements.”

The new edition of the Freedom Index is the first for the 116th Congress, and looks at ten key measures. Scores are derived by dividing a congressman’s constitutional votes by the total number of votes cast and multiplying by 100. So, the higher the score the better.

This edition of the Freedom Index tracks congressional votes in the House on a consolidated appropriations bill, public lands, firearms background checks, Yemen, the Paris Agreement, the Equality Act, a disaster supplemental appropriations bill, indefinite military detention, the budget deal, and a short-term appropriations bill.

It tracks votes in the Senate on abortion funding, public lands, a consolidated appropriations bill, Yemen, a disaster supplemental appropriations bill, an amendment to a supplemental border appropriations bill, war authorization, the budget deal, a spending-cut amendment, and a short-term appropriations bill.

The average House score is 36 percent. The average Senate score is 28 percent. Only two representatives, Thomas Massie (R-KY) and Justin Amash (I-MI), and two senators, Rand Paul (R-KY) and Mike Lee (R-UT), earned a perfect score of 100 percent.

We know that Democrats are worse than horrible. The socialist and statist policies of the Democratic Party are well known. It is the party of liberalism, socialism, progressivism, paternalism, collectivism, abortion, transgender mania, feminism, social justice, economic egalitarianism, big government, organized labor, government regulation, public education, government-mandated employee benefits, environmentalism, an ever-increasing minimum wage, anti-discrimination laws, affirmative action, welfare, higher taxes on “the rich,” income-transfer programs, and wealth-redistribution schemes.

But how bad are congressional Republicans?

Really bad.

There are 197 Republicans in the House, plus Independent Justin Amash, who was a Republican until July. Two Republicans included in the Freedom Index recently resigned (Reps. Duffy of New York and Collins of Wisconsin). Three Republicans have no score on the Freedom Index because they only recently entered the House after winning special elections (Reps. Murphy and Bishop of North Carolina and Rep. Keller of Pennsylvania). This leaves 197 Republicans with a score on the Freedom Index, including Rep. Amash. The average Republican score is 54.35 percent. Forty Republican Representatives scored 30 percent or lower, including one who received a zero.

There are fifty-three Republicans in the Senate. The average Republican score is only 31.75 percent. Twenty-three Republicans senators scored 20 percent or lower, including three who received a zero. Aside from the two Republican senators who scored a perfect 100 percent, only 5 of them scored above 50 percent…

What Lew Rockwell wrote about the Republicans ten years ago is still the gospel truth:

Free-market capitalism serves no more than a symbolic purpose for the Republican Party and for conservatives. Economic liberty is the utopia that they keep promising to bring us, pending the higher priority of blowing up foreign peoples, jailing political dissidents, crushing the left wing on campus, and routing the Democrats. Once all of this is done, they say, then they will get to the instituting of a free-market economic system. Of course, that day never arrives, and it is not supposed to. Capitalism serves the Republicans the way Communism served Stalin: a symbolic distraction to keep you hoping, voting, and coughing up money.

The only limited government that Republicans seek is a government limited to control by Republicans.

 

 

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Senate rejects Paul effort to cut spending

Posted by M. C. on October 29, 2019

The 2% solution.

This is the same government that requests a 5% increase for next year, gets 2% and calls it a budget cut.

https://thehill.com/blogs/floor-action/senate/467817-senate-rejects-paul-effort-to-cut-spending

The Senate on Monday rejected an effort by Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) to place an across-the-board spending cut in a domestic funding package being debated by lawmakers.
Senators voted 24-67 on the amendment from Paul, which would reduce spending by 2 percent compared to fiscal 2019 levels.
The amendment, had Paul been successful, would have been added to a spending package that includes commerce, science and justice; transportation and housing and urban development; agriculture; and interior.
Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), the top Democrat on the Senate Appropriations Committee, urged senators to oppose Paul’s amendment.
“His amendment will slash spending below the bipartisan budget act that we all negotiated,” Leahy said from the Senate floor ahead of the vote…
“Our commanders need funding. Our men and women in military need support. Congress needs to do its job. So later this week, the Senate is going to vote again to advance defense funding,” McConnell said on Monday…
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AUG150386 - SHERLOCK HOLMES 7 PER-CENT SOLUTION #3 (OF 5 ...

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The Senate basically just voted to arm ISIS with your tax dollars

Posted by M. C. on June 15, 2019

https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/the-senate-basically-just-voted-to-arm-isis-with-your-tax-dollarsh

by Jack Hunter

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., said on the senate floor Thursday, before a vote that would bar U.S. arm sales with three Arab states: “The facts are not contested. Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Bahrain have allowed U.S. arms to be funneled to radical Islamist groups throughout the Middle East.”

Paul is right. No one really contests this.

President Trump, who supports the arms sale, agrees that these countries have supported extremists. If Hillary Clinton had been elected president, apparently she knew too. President Barack Obama knew.

Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state made clear the U.S. was backing countries that aided our enemies. As Paul observed in his floor speech Thursday, “Even Hillary Clinton admitted in an email to John Podesta: ‘We need to use our diplomatic and more traditional intelligence assets to bring pressure on the governments of Qatar and Saudi Arabia, which are providing clandestine financial and logistic support to Isis and other radical groups in the region'” (emphasis added).

Paul also noted that in 2009 — a decade ago, because, yes, this is how long this has been going on — Hillary Clinton sent the State Department a cable that read, “Saudi Arabia remains a critical financial support base for al-Qaeda [and] the Taliban.”

Al Qaeda. The very group that attacked the U.S. on Sept. 11 and who most Americans probably think we are still trying to fight. Also, the Taliban, the entire reason we went to war in Afghanistan in 2001 — apparently U.S. foreign policy had indirectly bolstered both?

Again, these are not secrets. These leaders knew.

Congress knows. But that didn’t stop them Thursday from voting 43-56 to proceed with these arms sales.

The only Republicans who voted to stop this were Sens. Paul, Mike Lee, R-Utah, and Jerry Moran, R-Kan. Every other Republican voted to give arms and aid to countries that have histories of coddling terrorists.

Every Democrat voted to stop arms sales, except for seven: Sens. Doug Jones, D-Ala., Angus King, I-Maine, Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., Jon Tester, D-Mont., and Mark Warner, D-Va.

These seven Democrats apparently agree with the overwhelming majority of Republicans that allowing U.S. weapons to end up in the hands of ISIS and al Qaeda is worth whatever security benefit the United States allegedly gets from these exchanges.

The senators who support this insist it is to guard against Iranian influence in the region, which is a lazy rationale at best. “Maybe we should consider a peace plan that doesn’t include dumping more arms into a region aflame in civil unrest, civil war, and anarchy,” Paul said on the floor. “The argument goes that we must arm anyone who is not Iran. We are told that because of Iran’s threat, the U.S. must accept selling arms to anyone who opposes Iran, even bone-saw-wielding countries brazen enough to kill a dissident in a foreign consulate.”

“What would happen if we just said no?” Paul asked. “What would happen if we simply conditioned arms sales on behavior?”

Great question. In addition to arming ISIS and Saudi Arabia murdering a U.S.-based journalist last year, the American-backed Saudi war in Yemen continues to yield a civilian death toll so high we don’t exactly know what that number is…

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America's sport

Government’s favorite sport-War

 

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Stephen Colbert Is Actually a Robot – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on March 19, 2019

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2019/03/thomas-woods/stephen-colbert-is-actually-a-robot-designed-by-henry-kissinger/

By

Tom Woods Show

Just when you thought Stephen Colbert couldn’t get less funny, he interviews Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, who’s running for president as a Democrat.

She holds terrible views on many things. I know that. Not even close to the point, though.

Colbert had about as much charm, charisma, and humor as a hostage reading a ransom note.

Normally, a Democrat can expect light banter, friendly questions, and plenty of humor from a late-night talk-show host.

(Republicans not so much: I recall seeing Rand Paul on David Letterman, and the host spent the time not looking for common ground, pointing out what a unique politician Rand was that he could find points of agreement with pretty much everyone, but instead lecturing him — why, teachers should be paid more! Letterman boldly insisted, for instance.)

Not Gabbard.

She opposes the U.S. empire and has made this opposition a primary rallying cry of her campaign. This is not allowed.

No longer does the left exist to question authority, if indeed it ever did. It exists to defend orthodoxies and expel dissidents.

Every mainstream outlet at this point is an echo chamber for the U.S. regime’s talking points. Even — or perhaps especially — so-called comedy.

So instead of humor, Gabbard (quite unlike her opponents) was treated to relentless hostility, and the kind of fact-free talking points one might hear from Hillary Clinton, Henry Kissinger, Joe Lieberman, or any person drawn at random from the Establishment.

As usual, Caitlin Johnstone wrote what I was thinking, faster and better than I could have: Read the rest of this entry »

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Pentagon Spent $4.6 Million on Lobster Tail and Crab in One Month – Hit & Run : Reason.com

Posted by M. C. on March 15, 2019

Bureaucrats with lemonade stand mentalities spending your money.

Is anyone other than “Libertarian nut” Rand Paul squawking?

https://reason.com/blog/2019/03/08/pentagon-spent-46-million-on-lobster-tai

The federal government spends a disproportionate amount of its budget for outside contractors in the final month of the fiscal year, as agencies rush to blow through cash before it’s too late. Among the more noteworthy expenditures in 2018, according to the watchdog group Open the Books, was $4.6 million for lobster tail and crab.

Such use-it-or-lose-it spending stems from the fact that each federal agency is given a certain amount of money it can spend on outside contractors for the fiscal year. If the agency comes in under budget, Congress might decide to appropriate less money the following year.

Or as The Office‘s Oscar Martinez explains to Michael Scott in “The Surplus”: “Your mommy and daddy give you $10 to open up a lemonade stand, so you go out and you buy cups and you buy lemons and you buy sugar. And now you find out that it only cost you $9, so you have an extra dollar,” he explains. “So you can give that dollar back to mommy and daddy. But guess what: Next summer, and you ask them for money, they’re going to give you $9 because that’s what they think it cost to run the stand. So what you want to do is spend that dollar on something now, so that your parents think that it cost $10 to run the lemonade stand.”…

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profiteering

War Is A Racket

 

 

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Media Accuses Rand Paul of Hypocrisy for Visiting Canadian Hospital: Turns Out It’s a Private Hospital | Mises Institute

Posted by M. C. on January 16, 2019

Never let facts get in the way of a good story.

USA Today’s concern for Rand’s health is truly touching.

https://mises.org/power-market/media-accuses-rand-paul-hypocrisy-visiting-canadian-hospital-turns-out-its-private-0

Tho Bishop

Kentucky Senator Rand Paul recently announced he was receiving hernia surgery as a result of being blindsided in an attack from his neighbor. While a senator undergoing common surgery is of questionable newsworthiness, one may expect that the reminder that the Senator is still suffering from the 2017 incident as cause for sympathy. Instead, major media outlets decided to try to use the news as an example of hypocrisy on the part of Paul due to the fact he is receiving treatment at a Canadian hospital.

As published in USA Today: Read the rest of this entry »

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