Utopian Proposes Endless War on All Evil Everywhere

Those sort of people used to be called Trotskyites. Now they are called “possible GOP Veep picks.

That this sort of uber hawkery *still* is the first thing the GOP thinks of, after a decade of disasters brought on by the attempt to End Evil and build the Great Society in such barren soil as Afghanistan and Iraq makes it clear that the GOP, like Bourbons, remembers everything and learns nothing. The Right loves to make fun of the Messianic delusions of the God King. But neocons with their fantastic faith that they can “end evil” are every bit the secular messianic fantasists the Left are.

David Frum, having done the hatchet job and issued bulls of excommunication against conservatives who doubted this utopian project back in 2003 has since ditched the disastrous legacy of the Thing that Used to be Conservatism he did so much to create. But the Thing rumbles on like a robot, blindly parrotting the bellicose utopian rhetoric as Rubio did, eager to get back into power and launch more utopian nation-building wars, as Rubio makes clear.

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  • Debra C.

    Not to worry. Rubio is ineligible to be Veep. Parents weren’t naturalized until after he was born.
    GOP may disdain the birthers more than the Obamanites but they don’t want to lose votes over this and Farah (a hawk) will see to it.

    • The “natural born citizen” trope is tired for two reasons:

      1. The constitution requires the candidate, not his parents, to be natural born citizens. Anyone born in the US or her territories is naturally born. This includes Rubio and yes, Obama.

      2. Even if you disagree with 1, the constitution doesn’t specifically define “natural born” anyway, so the trope can be used to attack pretty much anyone but the Native Americans.

      • Ted Seeber

        Well, MAYBE Obama. After carefully examining the 6 different birth certificates floating around on the web for him, for technical reasons understandable to any software engineer, I conclude that they’re all fraudulent and all contain signs of being edited by software that wasn’t available until the late 1980s, not in 1962.

        I conclude that he was *probably* born in the United States based on newspaper articles from Hawaii that were held in paper archives, and then scanned to JPG files that do not contain such signs; but as far as actual birth certificates are concerned, EVERY SINGLE ONE FLOATING AROUND THE INTERNET, including those hosted at whitehouse.gov, are fakes.

        That includes the Hawaiian Short Form “Certificate of a Live Birth”, the Hawaiian Long Form (that just happens to have fonts on it that were invented by Microsoft in the late 1980s and otherwise looks exactly like another Hawaiian Long Form that was on the internet for other reasons), and the four different Kenyan certificates out there (three of which look suspiciously like they are from Australia, not Kenya).

        So while I’m not a birther- I’ve got to admit there’s something awfully suspicious going on about the whole mess that makes me wonder what Obama’s MOTHER is covering up.

        • Pete Davis

          I can’t dispute what you say because I have no expertise in PDFs etc. The online dissection by skeptics looks plausible and then Snopes says it’s bunk so I don’t know where to go.

          One thing I know is that the administration is acting very strangely and I can’t open up my laptop and show a computer image when I need to produce a BC. Maybe Obama just likes seeing his enemies act foolishly.

      • Pete Davis

        Not true. Merely being born here does not make one a “natural born citizen.” Check out Vattel’s Law: http://www.lonang.com/exlibris/vattel/ The Founding Father’s used it. I don’t like it, as dual citizen (my dad was a Canuck ) I’m disqualified. If I adhered to my mom’s Faith of her childhood, I could get an Israeli passport and further disqualify myself.
        So-called “anchor babies” and not Natural born and can not be president.

        I would bet my modest 401k that Obama was born in Hawaii. I’m not so sure Barrack Sr. was his father. Why else would they have fought the state of New Jersey this month to prevent introducing his long form birth certificate into evidence? There is no legal mechanism to keep an ineligible candidate off the ballot. As the attorney said, Mickey Mouse could be run. Theoretically, so could Arnold Swarzenegger. Maybe someone will try to pull it off.
        In the meantime, I lament the law and the fact that the two guys most suggested (Rubio & Jindall) can’t run. Yes Mark, I know they are both FAR from perfect.

  • Dan C

    There exists in the pro-life propaganda the thought that Rick Santorum lost in 2006 because he “wasn’t sufficiently pro-life” perpetuating the illusion of the strength of the pro-life. This propaganda is based on Rick Santorum’s support for Arlen Spector in a Republican primary.

    In 2006, and in the years thereafter, Rick Santorum campaigned, wrote, and spoke just like this (and nearly exclusively like this). He campaigned in 2006 (“pre-surge,” “pre-victory” in Iraq) and this bellicosity was rejected soundly in Pennsylvania.

    There was a time in recent memory that Americans were wearied by war.

  • Kirt Higdon

    Before they were called Trotskyites, they were called Jacobins. Rubio is still the betting favorite for the VP slot, although his odds have gone down since the rise of Portman. He now barely edges out Portman on in-trade and this may explain his outburst of war-mongering. He has to prove to the Mittster that he could take charge of a neo-con team rabid enough to include Bonkers Bolton.

  • I did have high hopes for him here in Florida.

  • Thomas R

    This strikes me as a really profound misreading of that paragraph, both by him and you. To the point of almost parody even.

    Look whether it’s good or bad the Ron Paul kind of non-interventionism isn’t going to happen. (I’m tempted to do the sitcommy line of “Stop trying to make Ron Paul happen, it won’t happen.”) This is because the US exists now and not in a perpetual 1789. (I wanted to say 1889, but we had the “Monroe Doctrine” by then so did at least intervene in the Americas) So yes our lives, and security I suppose, are profoundly influenced by things elsewhere. Yes we are in the world. (Whether we’re of the world or not) Even when the US was non-interventionist our lives, as Catholics, were profoundly influenced by events elsewhere.

    That you can interpret that as a global war or Trotskyism is kind of one of those reasons why Paleolibertarianism/Paleoconservatism has so far failed to earn the right to be taken serious. As a Catholic though I certainly recognize “our” security is influenced by blasphemy laws in Pakistan or what have you. And that we do have a connection to other nations and a need to care about what happens to them. That doesn’t mean war with everyone as should be obvious. Politics or international relations are not for everyone. They’re not your strong suit or his. I was initially quite irritated, but that it’s not for everyone is understandable.

    • I so badly want to agree with you, because I like Rubio for the most part. However, it’s not a misreading of the paragraph at all, especially when taken in the greater context of the rest of the speech.

      As a Catholic though I certainly recognize “our” security is influenced by blasphemy laws in Pakistan or what have you. And that we do have a connection to other nations and a need to care about what happens to them. That doesn’t mean war with everyone as should be obvious.

      But that’s exactly Rubio is saying. He just got done asking if we should have stayed out of WWII and touting his support of intervention in Libya. There’s really no way to read that paragraph, in context, that can’t be interpreted as hawkish.

    • Ted Seeber

      Our security IS influenced by war in other cultures, but it doesn’t really have to be. Clinging to the myth of the free market and globalization is the main cause.

  • Dick Burns

    At least the “Thing that Used to be Conservatism” makes more sense than the THing that Used to Be Catholic Apologetics

    • Hezekiah Garrett

      Oh, go eat a baby, Dick

    • Pete Davis

      What are you talking about?

      • Pete Davis

        I meant that for Burns

        • Mark Shea

          And he meant his remarks for me.

      • Mark Shea

        He means that people who write Catholic apologetics are supposed to affirm conservative Catholics in their notions that the agenda of the GOP is identical to and co-terminous with the teaching of the Catholic faith such that any criticism of GOP warmongering is a departure from the Catholic faith. Catholic social teaching is nothing more or other than opposition to abortion and GOP candidates can propose any evil and we much support them, so long as they are wearing a Precious Feet pin. In short, Catholic apologists can only discuss the fifth commandment in relation to abortion, but relating it to the Church’s teaching on just war is just Meddling in Politics.

        • Thomas R

          Probably that’s what he means. That’s not what I’d mean. (I don’t plan on voting for Romney and I don’t deem myself Republican) I’d mean that I don’t think Catholic writing is largely, or even significantly, about knee-jerk or demeaning reactions to mainstream American politics. And that it’s also not just doing the opposite of whatever Neoconservatives or Progressives do.

          Even if Rubio’s view is more hawkish than I granted, you make over-the-top statements comparing people to lizards or Trotskiyites. Maybe you mean well, or just don’t understand how it reads, but I don’t see that it’s a particularly healthy or Catholic. At best is more about Paleoconservatism or just anger.

          And although you, rightly, deride Catholics who only pay attention to subsidiary you haven’t really been clear IMO why non-interventionism fits solidarity. The closest I can think of is that America is so fundamentally flawed, created from rebellion and ruled by a corrupt class, that the issue is we shouldn’t intervene. Some moral global power or state maybe could, when it is necessary for humanitarian reasons. I could understand that, but at times I think you flirt with Anti-Americanism without being willing to commit to it that far. Also I’m not even clear what wars you think are just wars. (I assume WWII)

          If you could find a more charitable or balanced way to deal with flawed and sinful ideologies, or just avoid politics altogether, I would have more respect for you. But for me my problem it’s not that you’re critical of Capitalism or the Iraq War or even the death penalty.

    • S. Murphy

      Yeah, Mark
      Stick to you charism!

  • markrite

    woldn’t it be a good thing to intervene in, say, the Sudan, be a little hawkish with some Seal teams and maybe rescue all those Christians / Catholics who are, it seems, always being murdered with impunity? just asking–GOD BLESS ALL, MARKRITE

    • Ted Seeber

      What would be good is if we evacuated all the Catholics/Christians out of Islamic lands, sealed them up for about 500 years, making it life in solitary for crossing the border, and cutting off ALL trade and all news access.

      Then when they’re done having their Reformation, we open up the border again, and either make friends with anybody who is actually still alive, or colonize the empty land.

      Anyway, that’s what the isolationist who has studied Islam and the main theological issues internal to Islam thinks.

      • Thomas R

        Salafism in many ways was their Reformation. It was originally sweeping away non-Islamic traditions in favor of a focus solely on the Qur’an and Sunna that better responds to modernity. This is what people like Muhammad Abduh were about. And some of it was fairly humane.

        However when you sweep away the traditions and just focus on the Qur’an what you can get, instead, is a harsh and narrow legalism. The Reformation itself was not entirely unlike that. Calvin’s Geneva was a pretty harshly legalistic place in many ways. As was Puritan New England or Cromwell’s Britain. Mostly you have to go about two to three centuries after the Reformation before you get to the fairly tolerant place. Although the Quakers, I grant, got their immediately. But the closest to Quakers in Islam would be some kind of Quietist Sufism that doesn’t involve itself much in the world so doesn’t change it.

        • Sam Urfer

          It is interesting noting the parallels between fundamentalist Islam and the Reformation. John Knox = Taliban.

  • Lisa

    “Complete democratization of the Middle East.” You’d have a better chance of playing pick-up sticks with your butt cheeks. We should focus on Christianizing the Middle East. Democracy will follow on its own. You have to be patient. It took us 400 years to drive the heritics from Iberia, if we get started now, we could have the Middle East wrapped up by the end of the millenia.

  • no one

    He sounds just like President Obama, lavishing praises on world organizations and the “usefulness” of the middle east.

    This is the two-headed monster and, really, citizens don’t have a true choice in these “free” elections; both parties are the same.

    We had President Obama (and the UN and other transnational progressives) lauding the Responsibility to Protect doctrine for Egypt, Libya, Syria and the Middle East in general, and what you’ve seen here with Rubio is more of the same: our business is to be the world’s police. Concede our values to accomodate other (non-Christian) values.

    Study the verbiage, there is no difference.

    Who needs my vote this election?

  • War, like the legitimate martial arts, is for defense, and defense only. I believe that is not only good Catholic teaching, it is a sane and moral secular philosophy.
    How many people who have actually been in combat are in favor of starting a war? A retired Special Forces colonel with a distinguished combat record said to me: Anyone who starts a war should be put on trial.
    And he was by no means a pacifist. Neither am I.

  • terrye newkirk

    I must agree that politics is not your strong suit, :Mark. Moreover,k they are of only temporal interest, unlike Catholic apologetics, which is aimed at saving souls. Townes Van Zandt, late legendary singer-songwriter, used to say that he never mentioned politics on stage, because no matter what he said, he immediately lost half his audience.

    Something to ponder as one tries to proclaim unchanging Truth.

    • no one

      17 comments doesn’t seem like losing half an audience to me.

    • Not only did Jeremiah loose half his audience, he was thrown into a pit. His contemporaries too thought he ought not to meddle in politics.

      Our Lord makes note of the prophets who were roughly treated in their time. Mark’s arguments aside, truth is not measured by its popularity.

    • Mark Shea

      The pursuit of endless war does have something to do with the fifth commandment.

      • no one

        well, they’re not going to call it “pursuing endless war.” they’re going to call it “prevention,” like this:


        The purpose of the “Atrocities Prevention Board” is not to discuss which international atrocities to address and yada — that’s already decided within the Administration. The purpose of this board is to slowly introduce “prevention” and “responsibility to protect” to Americans.

        Note the tone of Dyer’s article. He starts off with “what’s this?”, skips the “interventionist everywhere?!” issue and begins to tease us with ideas with ideas as to why the APB wouldn’t work or how it could be done better. It’s presumptive — and as Dyer’s gullibility demonstrates, this APB has already done its job by pushing the expection up a notch: we’re in, now how to deal with “atrocities.”

        In the case of R2P, this means “prevention” with a militarized presence — everywhere — one step away from world-wide unending war, you would think, Mark.

        And as a side note, no, Samantha Powers didn’t coin R2P and the first link aiming at the FOX/WND article is incorrect in stating ‘The board’s creation was the culmination of Power’s efforts that last year defined preventing atrocities as a “core national-security interest and a core moral responsibility of the United States.’ The official White House statement marked the first time the U.S. government had made such a proclamation.”

        Verbiage such as this was already put into the Quadrennial Defense Reviews, beginning with Obama’s Administration .. I think beginning with Bush’s as well.

        Mark, I’m telling you this because, as a Catholic, you understand things .. globally. Fill in the gaps.

        I’ll end by saying CISPA is just another step toward “prevention.” Prevention of what? You and I know there is no WOT…

  • Lisa

    Looking back on Iraq, we should have set up an independent Christian state, Assryia, say. It might sound odd, but this is exactly what the UN did with Israel in 1948. Why not? There is no safe place for Christians to live in the Middle East, apart from Israel. Iraq’s Christian population, the oldest in the world, has been cut in half by the Mohamedans over the last 20 years.

    • no one

      Christians are on their way out and are a very insignificant minority in the UN. Find out the number of nation states and research how many of those are Christian nations.

      The UN is a muslim majority, my friend.

    • It would have become a protectorate under perpetual US protection, and it’s highly doubtful that there is or would have been political support for that. As well, there is no historical or demographic congruence with the establishment of Israel.

      The invasion of Iraq looks to have been a long-term regional fiasco, in which Iran’s influence has spread into Iraq, while we have removed a counter-balance to Iran. This is not to defend the previous Iraqi regime, but surely the outcome of the war is not what we would have desired.

      Immediately after the invasion, I heard someone deliver a rhapsody to an audience here in DC promising a new era of peace and development in the region. Now in 2012 we here speculations about war within months.

  • “…hear speculations…” Please, let us have a edit function here.

  • Lisa

    I recently spoke with a man from Lebanon who relayed the awful plight of Marian Catholics there. His challenge to me was, “How can other Christian nations just watch us get killed and do nothing?” I must admit, I felt at once ingorant and guilty. I explained, “Because you have no oil.” Maybe Christianizing the Middle East is a bit ambitious. Perhaps Romney can take us half the way there by Mormanizing them. Send in an army of handsome young men in pressed white shirts on bicycles.

  • The Deuce

    He’s just making the world safe for democracy, like conservatives always have!

    …er, wait, maybe I got that a little wrong.

  • Kirt Higdon

    To be honest, the Maronites and other Lebanese Christians have a high degree of responsibility for their own predicament. They adopted contraception to a much greater degree than their Muslim neighbors, thus lowering their relative share of the population. They are split into rival Mafia style clans thinly disguised as political parties and warfare among these clans has probably taken more Christian lives than has warfare against Moslems. And finally they invited in various destructive invaders (Syria, Israel, France, the US) who either turned against them or sold them out. The current Lebanese political scene has the Christians almost evenly split between the Free Patriotic Movement, which is allied with Hezbollah and Syria, and the Lebanese Forces/Falange grouping which is more pro-US. All of these parties are headed by Maronite Catholic warlords and have previously been on the opposite side of what they now support. And there are numerous other Christian parties, all with considerable blood on their hands. The US has meddled in this before and just made things worse. Time to stay out; more killing won’t make Lebanon or the world more Christian.

  • Peggy R

    That Rubio speech calls to mind W’s 2nd inaugural. I was screaming at the TV/radio when W suggested we’d do anything to spread democracy around the world–or words to that effect. I don’t want us fighting every where. I think we are still war-weary.

    I do agree with “natural born” citizen concerns about Rubio and Jindal. This is why the GOP doesn’t want to touch the O questions I guess. I do not think O was NOT born in the US, by the way. I’ve always thought those theorists need to prove Stanley Anne Dunham was in Kenya. Seems she could only be found in HI at the time. But the O narrative is fishy and secretive in general.

  • Kirt Higdon

    Looks like we’re getting our own version of Rubio here in Texas. Ted Cruz is making a strong run in the Republican primary to replace Kay-baby. He’s proud of his support of the Iraq War, the surge, and John McCain. Says he supports the Patriot Act but “understands” people’s concerns about it. To my chagrin, Ron and Rand Paul are making joint campaign appearances with Cruz. What’s with that???!!! At least Cruz was definitively born in Canada so there’s no chance of him rising higher than the Senate.

  • Kirt Higdon

    I’ll pull back on my criticism of the Pauls. The event or events are sponsored by an independent group and the Pauls and Cruz were among those invited. For Ron or Rand to refuse to attend because Cruz was also invited would be the equivalent of Ron Paul refusing to participate in any of the Republican debates. Debates and candidate forums are bound to bring people with a lot of disagreements onto the same platform.