Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Donald Trump Doesn't Rule Out Using Nukes Against ISIS

It is really difficult to understand how a libertarian could support Donald Trump, on the policy issues that he is clear on. trade, the building of government infrastructure, pro-medicare, etc., he is terrible.

On issues where he vacillates from interview to interview, he can be horrific.

This morning on the Bloomberg show, With All Due Respect, he said he would not rule out using tactical nuclear weapons against ISIS.

“I'm never going to rule anything out—I wouldn't want to say. Even if I wasn't, I wouldn't want to tell you that because at a minimum, I want them to think maybe we would use them,” he said.

There are plenty of ways he can walk this comment back if he chooses, but what is so difficult about saying in the first place that you won't use nuclear weapons against ISIS?

I remind the reader that the sum total of ISIS attacks in the US has been one: a wacko husband and wife team in San Bernardino.

Does Trump understand the collateral damage a nuclear attack would cause? Does he understand the blowback and the number of others he would radicalize? And that he may have even do so by making these insane comments?



  1. I don't think Trump would rule out using nukes against Ted Cruz.

  2. Robert, at the risk of having a long, fruitless debate on this, let me just say that it may be legitimate under certain circumstances, to threaten lunatics with total destruction should they initiate maximum force against people or property. North Korea and ISIS have both argued that they would have no qualms about leveling NYC if they could do it. Soon, these lunatics (and more) will have missles that can travel 5,000 miles and nuclear weapons. If you say impossible, I say wait 5 years. So, I say that suggesting that lunatics who intend city-wide destruction should, themselves, be threatened with destruction (nuclear or conventional) is entirely appropriate. Hopefully this will act as a it did in the Cold War, and such weapons will never be used. Now I know that Trump did not put the matter this carefully....shame on him. Nonetheless, I don't think that your reading on Trump-think is accurate nor do I think that there are serious libertarians that "support" Trump. Hillary is the only serious alternative to Trump and our judgment is that she would be far worse than Trump in every way....including "nuclear." A vote to abstain, or a vote for some near-libertarian with zero chances, is de facto a vote for Clinton.

    1. Don't vote! You are just showing support for a currupt system. Certainly don't claim not voting is vote for Hillary. My state goes Democrat every election. Trump won't change that.


    2. Elections aren’t decided by one vote (all anyone has). Not voting can mean you don’t have the delusion your vote matters and then promote tyrannical politicians and the state because of it.

    3. The only lunatic you need to worry about is your own president (whoever (s)he may be at any given time. The only lunatic to use nuclear weapons was a US president.

  3. Dominick,

    Rothbard took a decidedly different position here:

    “…another answer that the libertarian is particularly equipped to give is that while the bow and arrow and even the rifle can be pinpointed, if the will be there, against actual criminals, modern nuclear weapons cannot. Here is a crucial difference in kind. Of course, the bow and arrow could be used for aggressive purposes, but it could also be pinpointed to use only against aggressors. Nuclear weapons, even 'conventional' aerial bombs, cannot be. These weapons are ipso facto engines of indiscriminate mass destruction…We must, therefore, conclude that the use of nuclear or similar weapons, or the threat thereof, is a sin and a crime against humanity for which there can be no justification.”

    In short, Trump's use of nukes could not be considered libertarian because innocent life is certain to be taken in such an act.

    Further, the right response to the threat of war to the libertarian, is the immediate stoppage of such acts and a return to peace. Rothbard again:

    "…the overriding consideration for the libertarian is the condemnation of any State participation in war. Hence his policy is that of exerting pressure on all States not to start a war, to stop one that has begun and to reduce the scope of any persisting war in injuring civilians of either side or no side.”

    Why do we, as libertarians, wish to avoid war beyond the injury of innocents? As Rothbard puts it, "It is in war that the State really comes into its own: swelling in power, in number, in pride, in absolute dominion over the economy and the society. Society becomes a herd, seeking to kill its alleged enemies, rooting out and suppressing all dissent from the official war effort, happily betraying truth for the supposed public interest. Society becomes an armed camp, with the values and the morale—as Albert Jay Nock once phrased it—of an ‘army on the march.’”

    These quotes are excerpted from Murry Rothbard's War, Peace, and the State found here:

  4. If libertarians are so smart, why haven't they managed to put up a decent alternative to these wackos? Save Ron Paul of course.

  5. Trump told the WashPo editorial board he did not want to use nukes against ISIS. Weird. He also said he doesn't like to tip his hand, presumably to both his political opponents and foreign enemies.

    Hitler gave similar reasoning during his campaign. He more or less claimed the establishment would implement warped versions of his policies which would fail and make him look bad.

    Anyway, if Trump feels the need to talk about the size of his dick on national television to save face, just imagine what he'd do if taunted by foreign aggressors.

  6. So it's obvious trump "smells the finish line" so to speak. I wonder how much of what he says is just geared towards winning and how much he actually believes. Or does he believe very little and only cars about winning? Time will tell I guess.

  7. Maybe it would put the fear of a real God in them.