Barr’s bedfellows

As a Republican-oriented conservative magazine, the American Spectator is having a little bit of difficultry trying to figure out how to handle Bob Barr. On the one hand, he was their hero back in the ‘90s, when he headed the Bill Clinton impeachment team. On the other hand, these days he’s talking as if he is on a Bush impeachment team.

The approach in this article is to paint Barr as either (1) someone who has lost his way, and is now surrounded by leftists at news conferences, or (2) someone who has gone full-circle, back to his antiwar roots. (Barr was a Young Democrat protestor against the Vietnam War as an undergraduate.)

We are left in a state of confusion about the reasons for Barr’s ideological positioning on Iraq and Iran, precisely because “Barr’s Bedfellows” does not address how it is the Republican Party, the Bushies, and the go-along conservatives who have shifted radically from a Reaganite peace-through-strength position to preventive war and perpetual war. Yes, Bob Barr has done some flip-flopping in the course of his political career, but he looks like a straight arrow compared to those folks.

19 Responses to “Barr’s bedfellows”

  1. disinter Says:

    the American Spectator is having a little bit of difficultry trying to figure out how to handle Bob Barr.

    No wonder. He flip-flops on a daily basis. The man has no principles.

  2. Bill Wood Says:

    Now that’s the old disinter whom we hate and don’t admire…;-) LOL

  3. timothy west Says:

    the man has no principles.

    The entire ZAP-NAP wing of the LP has been and is a fraud on the voting public. I wonder what all the donations to the LP given since 1971 by supporters and former members who assumed that it primarily existed to elect candidates to public office and gave money based on that premise amounts to?

    principles my ass. The LP up until very recent times - “the mission statement” now makes it clear it is a political party) has been the example of a fraudulent enterprise, operating under false pretenses that it existed as a political party as it’s primary activity at the time.

  4. Justin Grover Says:

    This article did seem to ramble through a variety of semi-contradictory points, and mainly seemed focused on putting Barr in a poor light (among the publication’s readers, anyway).

  5. John Lowell Says:

    So its a question of which flip-flopper is the worst of the two? Tremendous! Whether its the Bush Regime whose vocal opposition to stem-cell research consisted in an utter capitulation to it or the “pro-life” Bob Barr who can’t manage to answer questions about who signs the checks financing alleged murders in the family, ain’t we stuck with some crew though? Its time to give up on this insanity already! The only sane response to the list of choices and candidates this time or any time, frankly, is to stay at home and forget that an election is happening.

  6. Joe Lawson Says:

    Hmmmmm. Didn’t know Barr was a Vietnam War Protestor - I think that make him much more believable that he is truly against the Iraq War.

  7. David Wooten Says:

    The universal libertarian principles are respect for individual liberty and private property rights and no more government than is needed to protect such rights. Many conservatives used to have similar principles. Sadly, however, many now equate ‘protection’ with preemptive war on perceived enemies, most of which are no threat to US.

  8. Roscoe Says:

    Mr. West may have been donating under false assumptions, but I would bet that most of us recognized from 1972 on that the LP was going to use political campaigns (and the soap box it afforded) to spread libertarian ideas. And I would say the LP began to lose its effectiveness when it decided it would first try to win political office…burning up its limited resources in petition drives and feckless campaigns that still achieved very little.

  9. timothy west Says:

    The issue is the oath, Roscoe.

    To me, and no doubt countless others, I thought it meant that I was not a bomb thrower or terrorist. Of course, what it really certifies ( but has never been disclaimed or further explained by the LP officially ) is that by becoming a member and signing that pledge, you are a anarchist and believe in no governmental authority at all, no statehood of any kind, including american.

    the word ‘force’ has a double meaning in the pledge. the LP has been using the Nolan chart for years as outreach with many quadrants in it, yet upon joining,
    the member is sworn to 100/100 on the chart instead of anything else.

    the only accepted “true” libertarian is one that has taken the oath and understands what it really means. But the LP has never explained their use of the word “force” as they apply it. There has never been a disclaimer used to explain to people what they were really agreeing to by joining the party. There’s no question that thousands and thousands of people have donated and joined up to the LP over the years not knowing what they were agreeing to, assuming as I did.

    thats the issue and I believe the tactic is deliberate and fraudulent upon possible donators to the LNC. if they know beforehand then they can make a informed decision whether or not to donate to the LP.

    I never have had any problem with anarchists, except for 1 thing: they used the oath in a manner inconsistent with the actions of principled individuals by keeping the oath ambiguous while at the same time accepting the money and support of people who did not know of the double meaning of the word “force” in the oath.

    Principled people would have disclaimed or explained the actual meaning of the word ‘force’ as it pertains to the LP in the oath proudly and without wiggle room.

  10. EVIL DICK Says:
    1. Bill Wood Says:
      June 11th, 2008 at 10:12 am

    Now that’s the old disinter whom we hate and don’t admire…;-) LOL

    ****************

    I DON’T HATE HIM, I JUST WANT TO SCROG HIM! CAUSE HE’S ONE SEXY MOTHERFUCKER!

  11. NateF. Says:

    The article was wrong. Read “The Other McCain” blog and the retraction on the AmSpec blog. Barr was not a Viet Nam war protester. Barr is FAR more principled and conservative than McCain. Barr is for securing the borders, non-intervention foreign policy(a Reagan tradition), less government, lower taxes, drilling for oil domestically and is strongly pro-life just to name a few. The guy is the candidate we wanted for the Republicans. Here’s a guy we can get behind. I don’t care what stupid party he’s running with. All he needed was ballot access.

  12. Eric Dondero Says:

    Hmmn, so I guess Defense Conservatives are a new animal. Hawk Conservatives never existed in the 1970s, 80s, and ‘90s.

    The Straight Arrows are the ones who have consistently supported a strong National Security throughout the Cold War and now into the War on Islamo-Fascism.

  13. disinter Says:

    I believe Timmy West’s brain damage is becoming obvious.

  14. johncjackson Says:

    Well, at least Tim West has an excuse for his brain damage.

  15. Susan Hogarth Says:

    ...non-intervention foreign policy(a Reagan tradition)...

    Blink.

    Afghanistan? Angola? Nicaragua?

    Hardly ‘noninterventionism’.

    Where were you in the eighties? I was here on Planet Earth, and I didn’t notice Reagan being particularly ‘noninterventionist’. Sure, I realize that Bush has lowered the bar, so that not actually over-running a country with national guard troops looks like noninterventionism, but there are other forms of interventionism.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reagan_Doctrine

  16. NateF. Says:

    Ronald Reagan won the Cold War. He brought down the Soviet Union and never directly confronted them militarily. What Ronald Reagan did should be a model for future generations. Reagan even said that the heart of conservatism is libertarianism. Reagan is not the guy Libertarians should be targeting. They should be following his model. If they would, they’d do a heck of alot better in elections, as would Republicans.

  17. Gary Treistman Says:

    Timothy West doesn’t know what he is talking about.

    Libertarians are not Anarchists. There is more than just a distinction, they are mutually exclusive.

  18. Charlie Says:

    The key is that he is now anti-war, clearly. We need to rally behind Bob now and begin a serious Libertarian campaign for November. The days are numbered. Check out barrbomb dot com to pledge your support on July 2. http://barrbomb.com

  19. Susan Hogarth Says:

    He brought down the Soviet Union and never directly confronted them militarily.

    Jingoistic cold-war claptrap. What brought communism down was nothing less than communism. Thats’ the point we need to be making - that communism is self-destructive, not that ‘we’ (or even more absurd, Reagan himself) somehow ‘beat’ it.

    As for ‘never directly confronted’, no; he was content to f$ck with the lives of people throughout the world by propping up militaristic right-wing governments that preyed upon them. But here’s a clue: that not non-interventionism.

    What Ronald Reagan did should be a model for future generations.

    Let us hope not!

    Reagan is not the guy Libertarians should be targeting. They should be following his model. If they would, they’d do a heck of alot better in elections, as would Republicans.

    Is that his major increase in the size and scope of government model? Or his mucking around in other countries, stirring up wars and propping up right-wing regimes model?

    Reagan made some libertarianesque noises at a few points. That’s fine as far as it goes, but the same could be said of Alan Greenspan. That didn’t make either one of them particularly libertarian. In fact it makes them particularly repulsive in light of their antilibertarian actions, as they ought to have known better.

    Wow. I was a democrat in the 80s (a particularly naive one, I will say); and this is giving me flashbacks.

Leave a Reply