Lately I have been listening to people raise various objections Ron Paul’s foreign policy. Many of these arguments are based on fear, ignorance, and flawed assumptions.
My goal is not to convince you to vote for Ron Paul. I’m sure your mind is already made up. My goal is to inform your views about our Foreign Policy. I have studied history and foreign affairs intensely over the last few years and have become convinced that our current foreign policy is dangerous and evil. Name any country in the world and I can give you an update on what is going on in that region and perhaps even the country itself.
I would like to address these flawed assumptions over the coming days. The first flawed assumption is that giving money to tyrants makes the world safer for US.
Wrong Assumption #1 Giving Foreign Aid Promotes US Regional Interests
Foreign Aid means giving money, food and guns to the leaders of other nations. They then sometimes use this money to rape their people to feed their soldiers. The money is supposed to help the poor. But, the problem with tyrants is that they are evil, and evil men don’t feed the poor even when you pay them to.
We gave or continue to give aid to the following regimes:
- Mubarak Regime (Egypt)
- Hussein Regime (Iraq)
- Taliban Regime (Afghanistan)
- Putin Regime (Russia)
- Gillani Regime (Pakistan)
- Wolde-Giorgis Regime (Ethiopia)
- Chavez Regime (Venezuela)
- Castro Regime (Cuba)
- Palestinian Authority Regime (Gaza Strip)
- Gaddafi Regime (Libya)
- The list goes on and on.
The shorter list is the tyrants we don’t aid. To my knowledge is Kim Jong il and Kim Jong-un of North Korea.
What is so sad about this list is that we have ended up going to war with most of these tyrants anyway.
I am convinced that Foreign Aid is evil and one of the biggest reasons that the third world stays poor. If you read the Old Testament, you learn that the poor stay poor not because they lack money. They stay poor because they lack justice. When we give food, guns and cash to tyrants we promote the very injustice that hurts the poor. Also, when food does make it to the people it puts local farmers out of work since they can’t compete with free food. Oh, and foreign aid is bankrupting our economy. Socialism is bad, very very bad.
Borrowing money from China to then give aid to tyrants is like borrowing cash from a loan shark to hire a drug dealer to shoot the homeless.
Ron Paul is the only candidate who opposes to Foreign Aid based on principle. The other candidates like aid but don’t think we can afford it right now. Congressman Paul’s plan to cut 100% of foreign aid will help US and will promote justice around the world. It will also help Israel since we give seven times more money to Israel’s enemies than we give to Israel. Israel doesn’t need our money, Israel just found a huge oil reserve that has them set for years. More on Israel to come.
What do you think? Is foreign aid ever justified? Tomorrow we will discuss whether the number of terrorists is fixed or variable.
Inciteful and you have brought out several points that I had not hit upon. Thank you for taking the time to write and especially to then share what you have written.
I agree with you on Ron Paul. I am sad that so many of my conservative christian friends choose to continue to believe that we should go to war (kill) so many of our fellow human beings – all of whom were created by our heavenly Father. I pray diligently for all whom have accepted Christ to receive the eyes of their understanding opened to the truth about what being truly “pro-life” is all about. I plant seed, another waters and God gives the increase.
Blessings young man,
I’ll refrain from starting a big debate here, but I think it’s necessary to point out that foreign aid is a very broad and diverse topic. Saying “foreign aid hurts third-world countries” is like saying “eating food causes obesity” – well, yes, it does (or at least it can), but the issue is a lot more complicated than that.
One important thing to remember is that much of the U.S.’s foreign aid is sent to NGOs, not to foreign governments. This means that “we gave money to Egypt” does not mean “we gave money to Mubarak”. While some of that money can be redirected, the vast majority doesn’t go to buy guns for dictators – because the dictators never touch it.
Another important thing to remember is that there is a distinction between in-cash aid (money) and in-kind aid (things). Your statement that “when food does make it to the people it puts local farmers out of work since they can’t compete with free food” is not strictly true, because aid often takes the form of money that is used to buy food from local farmers and distribute it. This is actually very good for the local economy, at least in the short term.
A third important thing to remember is that aid is often diplomatic, not practical. To what extent it succeeds in generating goodwill varies by the situation (Venezuela = probably not much; Indonesia = a lot, empirically verified.)
We had big debates about this, but I want to just respond to your analogy. “Foreign Aid” is a much more specific thing than “food.” Food is more like money (in general). Foreign aid (a specific type of money) is like fried or fatty food. Yes, they DO cause obesity. Sorry; I don’t care how many people you can come up with who eat fast food and don’t get fat, fried foods lead to obesity.
“Goodwill” is a dumb thing to aim for when the cost is distortion of local markets. Anyone who opposes subsidies domestically (ie: most republicans) should oppose them overseas for the same reasons – external, synthetic money (no matter how it’s injected) distorts market cycles and political patterns that lead to natural change.
I’m not going to argue with this one. Totally on board. And very, very well put.
Putting foreign policy aside, can you support a man who thinks marijuana and other drugs should be legalized and who blames 9-11 on the U.S?
First off, you can’t say “Putting foreign policy aside” and then reference 9-11 in the same sentence. The two are inexorably intertwined.
Second, “blames 9-11 on the U.S.” is an incredibly oversimplified and misleading description of anything he’s actually said. It’s like saying, to borrow Daniel Gaskell’s metaphor, that food is at fault for our obesity problem. Paul doesn’t blame 9-11 on the U.S. He says that our foreign policy (as described in Thomas’s article, and again in his next one) has led others to hate us, which then inspires acts of terrorism.
Third, marijuana is safer than both alcohol and tobacco. Whereas these two legal drugs combine to kill about 600,000 people a year in the U.S. (numbers vary tremendously depending on your source – but no matter where you look, it’s a lot), the number of marijuana related deaths is so small it’s not even measurable. Although I’ve read a handful of news stories about people who, for example, got high and stumbled onto a train track, I’ve never found a source that cited anything other than 0 as the number of marijuana-related deaths every year. On top of that, marijuana has dozens of well-known and well-documented medical uses that have been corroborated by major medical associations, state/local/national governments around the U.S. and the world, and thousands of years of history, and yet the federal government continues to insist that it has no medical benefit and continues to arrest even those people who are using marijuana legally according to their state law.
I’m well-versed on this subject, so I could go on for a long time. I could, for example, talk about the fact that 98% of heroin-related deaths are actually caused by the existence of a black market (e.g., gang violence, DEA raids, lack of adequate substance control), even though heroin is one of the easiest drugs to overdose on. Or the fact that teenagers say it’s easier for them to get ahold of marijuana than it is to get ahold of cigarettes. Or the fact that a misdemeanor marijuana arrest by a local police officer takes a cop off the street for 4 hours and costs $3,000-4,000 for the city/state to process.
But I’m not going to do that, instead I’m going to say: Why the hell WOULDN’T you vote for the FIRST PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE IN DECADES who actually has the courage to both SAY and DO something SENSIBLE about our completely genocidal, expensive, and demoralizing national drug policy?
That is all extremely interesting. Thanks for posting it. But I think that, legally speaking, it puts the cart before the horse. Please see my separate comment below.
good write-up definitely have to brush up on my foreign policy knowledge. But what Toadie-O says concerning Paul’s view on drugs is very disturbing.
The 10th amendment is pretty important, but our federal government seems to think that they should write laws about most everything. The states ought to make most of these drug policy decisions, criminal justice policy, medical and health laws. Paul has some smart foreign policy. We Americans seem to make it a part of who we are to throw money at problems. We even sell countries the military equipment they later use to kill us. It is really sad when we give from our surplus, free food to poor countries, and put out of business their local farmers.
We are not the world’s policeman, provider or parent! If we continue acting like such, we might over-extend ourselves, go broke and at the least, patronize. And killing our “friends” is not good foreign policy.
Let’s not even bother to talk about the good/bad/ugly of any given substance yet. Let’ s first look at the law.
The entire country recognized, 90 years or so back, that the federal government did not have any constitutional authority to ban the “manufacture, sale, or transportation” of a substance, in this case the substance banned was “intoxicating liquors”. So, following the legal mechanism for changing that restriction, the 18th Amendment was written, passed out of Congress, ratified by the States, and became law. It didn’t work out well, and 13 years later was repealed by the 21st Amendment.
If the federal government was prohibited from restricting even alcohol prior to the 18th and after the 21st Amendment, what do you suggest has changed in the US Constitution that allows the federal government to make laws restricting any other substance today?
This is the first hurdle that we must get over. If a current policy is against the law of the land, then arguing that the policy should continue is just pure lawlessness. If you oppose the policy, then you must support the dismantling of the policy, on constitutional grounds. If you support the policy, then you must seek to change the constitution to legally allow what we are already doing. The problem is that almost every GOP candidate claims we should “follow the Constitution” but then supports laws that are (currently) clearly UN-constitutional.
It appears that you are getting to and deleting the spam comments just as fast as they appear. Thanks for saving your readers the time and effort of chasing these distractions.
By the way, I saw your little brother at an NCFCA tournament in Grand Prairie TX last week. Even from across the large room, I thought he looked just like your picture.