Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Block vs. Wenzel: An Exchange on Rand Paul

Dr. Block emails:

Dear Bob:

“Paul, who has fallen to the back of the pack in Republican polls, addressed the conference on Saturday, telling those gathered that the nation had been too interventionist in its approach to foreign policy and declaring that he wanted to restore “common sense” to America’s international posture.”

Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2015/09/republican-2016-straw-poll-mackinac-island-213856#ixzz3mKEUzydW

No other GOP candidate is as good on foreign policy as this.

Yes, Rand isn’t as good as Ron. He isn’t as good as the 3 of us. He isn’t good when compared to pure libertiaranism. But compared to the other GOPers? Name one who is as good as him!!!

Bob, you compare Rand to Rothbard, or you or me or Michael or Ron and find him wanting. Fair enough. He’s pretty bad when compared to people like that. But, you never ever compare him to the other GOP people. If you did, you’d see that he stands head and shoulders above all of them. Why don’t you ever make that comparison?

Best regards,


Walter E. Block, Ph.D.
Harold E. Wirth Eminent Scholar Endowed Chair and Professor of Economics
Joseph A. Butt, S.J. College of Business                
Loyola University New Orleans

My Response,

Hi Walter,

I have no idea why there is something special about Rand saying that we need to restore “common sense to America’s international posture.”

Is this the best you can do in terms of finding a Rand quote to defend your view that he should be supported and money sent to his campaign?

Are you saying that the other Republican candidates wouldn't say they are in favor of "common sense" when it comes to America’s international posture?

Did Reason get this wrong about what Rand means (my highlight)?:
Paul stood by the comments he made in "Containment and Radical Islam," a February 2013 speech at the Heritage Foundation. That speech argues that a realist foreign policy is neither "imperialistic not isolationist" and seeks to engage the world through a variety of measures, including trade, cultural exchange, political pressure, and military action. In it, Paul called for a fuller understanding of Cold War theorist George F. Kennan's "containment" theory, which has often been reduced to simply confronting enemies via military action.
 I agree with such keen observers as former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury, and former associate editor of the Wall Street Journal, Paul Craig Roberts who wrote after watching the debate:
There is not a peaceful person among the Republican candidates....If any of the Republicans are elected, or for that matter any of the Democrats, war will be the result. 

 I will grant you that Rand's answers are less clear than those of the other candidates,

But, where there is clarity, he is worse.

As I have already pointed out for someone who has relatives in Ukraine, the fact that Donald Trump thinks he can negotiate with Russian President Putin  may mean for that person that Trump is a plus over Rand who said we should give "no free pass to Russia or China," Especially since some think that a Trump Administration would restrain the Empire overseas.

And I state once again, Rand IS the absolute worst on taxes with his value added tax proposal.

Why, why, given that you are such an important figure in the modern day libertarian movement would you stick your neck out, indeed call for others to send money to the Rand campaign, when he has not said one libertarian thing and his obfuscating manner of answering questions makes it impossible to know where he stands on anything?


Robert Wenzel
Editor & Publisher
San Francisco, CA

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