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In Defense of Liberal Internationalism

June 21, 2004

(archived broadcast )
I believe there IS a role for the United States to play in the world to promote democracy and human rights.
The fiasco in Iraq shows us the wrong way to do it.
But, that being said, I am no isolationist….and sometimes, war is necessary.

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  • ted November 12, 2004 4:23 am

    Have to agree with Ben that it is better in the long run for America to start adjusting to global competition now, just too bad that our generation has to take the brunt of it. I’m objectivist on this one.
    “I love you liberals your response everytime someone says they are doing well or everyone they know is doing fine you say “the world doesnt revolve around you and your freinds” It never fails!”
    Logical comeback, I dont see why it should fail. However I think Ben was alluding to the notion that liberals are upset only because they are relatively less wealthy. Not a good argument just by itself for many reasons. There are many wealthy liberals (warren buffet, second wealthiest man in world according to worlds richest people 2001 and 2002) for example, plenty of poor conservatives. Capitalism is not so vain that everyone votes their pocketbook. Not to put words in your mouth Ben, but trying to get at the issue. Let me know if i was wrong.
    I think we have to start agreeing that the multiplier effect that is supposed to happen in trickle down economics is not going to save the economy. The comment however ignored the particulars of Bens previous post and instead attacked a separate ‘conservative’ policy, no? Allowing outsourcing and trickle down economics are different?
    How many terrorists attacks have we had since 9/11? By counting only the thousand plus dead american soldiers in Iraq I would have to say quite a few. But of course you were referring to attacks on American soil. Three years is a wink in history. Before America is done with its war on terror don’t be so naive to think our soil will have been untouched. We are safer because of policy? Like our policy towards Israel that has turned the muslim world against us? Like a misdirected war based on poor intelligence against a country that was only a threat symbolically that has now ironically left us with little means of pre-emptively dealing with the buildup towards real weapons of mass destruction in Iran? I am much more certain that Iran’s weapons program will not be making any dissapearances on us.
    Now that I’ve played with your pennies its time for my two cents. Hmm, war as a necessity. Hemingway said that the world is a good place and that it is worth fighting for. Not that he was a foreign policy expert but humans have always fought for what they considered to be right. Just because you cease to label this “fighting” a “war,” does not in any way negate the fact. This is what liberal internationalism essentially gaurantees – that a global state of democracies will be free from War with a capital w. I think it is almost a superflous point now given the decline in nationalist identities and rise in ethnic and cultural ties. I think conflict will stem from the peoples who are alienated from a western democratic system. Who cares right now if democracies don’t fight eachother, if, in other words we get along with our friends? If you were to call Iraq a democracy next year it would not change a thing. Liberal internationalism gaurantees peace on the basis of state centric power and loyalties. In a region where there is none it becomes a moot point.

  • Ben June 24, 2004 3:03 pm

    do you honestyly believe Bush caused the recession? I find it hard to believe he caused it…seeing as how democrats were blaming the recession on Bush prior to him taking office, it hard for me to believe it now.
    Is it not possible Clinton balancing of the budget and lack of Govt spending could be the cause of economic problems as of late? Remember it is proven changes in economic policy take between 2 and 4 years until effects can be seen.