Power & Market

Neocons Demand "Crushing" Sanctions on Russia

08/06/2018Ron Paul

You can always count on the neocons in Congress to ignore reality, ignore evidence, and ignore common sense in their endless drive to get us involved in another war. Last week, for example, Senators John McCain (R-AZ), Lindsey Graham (R-NC), Bob Menendez (D-NJ), and others joined up to introduce what Senator Graham called “the sanctions bill from hell,” aimed at applying “crushing” sanctions on Russia.

Senator Graham bragged that the bill would include “everything but the kitchen sink” in its attempt to ratchet up tensions with Russia.

Sen Cory Gardner (R-CO) bragged that the new sanctions bill “includes my language requiring the State Department to determine whether Russia merits the designation of a State Sponsor of Terror.”

Does he even know what the word “terrorism” means?

Sen Ben Cardin (D-MD) warns that the bill must be passed to strengthen our resolve against “Vladimir Putin’s pattern of corroding democratic institutions and values around the world, a direct and growing threat to US national security.”

What has Russia done that warrants “kitchen sink” sanctions that will “crush” the country and possibly designate it as a sponsor of terrorism? Sen. Menendez tells us: “The Kremlin continues to attack our democracy, support a war criminal in Syria, and violate Ukraine’s sovereignty.”

There is a big problem with these accusations on Russia: they’re based on outright lies and unproven accusations that continue to get more bizarre with each re-telling. How strange that when US Senators like Menendez demand that we stand by our NATO allies even if it means war, they attack Russia for doing the same in Syria. Is the Syrian president a “war criminal,” as he claims? We do know that his army is finally, with Russian and Iranian help, about to defeat ISIS and al-Qaeda, which with US backing for seven years have turned Syria into a smoking ruin. Does Menendez and his allies prefer ISIS in charge of Syria?

And how hypocritical for Menendez to talk about Russia violating Ukraine’s sovereignty. The unrest in Ukraine was started by the 2014 US-backed coup against an elected leader. We have that all on tape!

How is Russia “attacking our democracy”? We’re still waiting for any real evidence that Russia was involved in our 2016 elections and intends to become involved in our 2018 elections. But that doesn’t stop the propagandists, who claim with no proof that Russia was behind the election of Donald Trump.

These Senators claim that sanctions will bring the Russians to heel, but they are wrong. Sanctions are good at two things only: destroying the lives of innocent civilians and leading to war.

As I mentioned in an episode of my Liberty Report last week, even our own history shows that sanctions do lead to war and should not be taken lightly. In the run-up to US involvement in the War of 1812, the US was doing business with both France and the UK, which were at war with each other. When the UK decided that the US was favoring France in its commerce, it imposed sanctions on the US. What did Washington do in response? Declared war. Hence the War of 1812, which most Americans remember as that time when the British burned down the White House.

Recent polls show that the majority of Americans approve of President Trump’s recent meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Among Republicans, a vast majority support the meeting. Perhaps a good defeat in November will wake these neocon warmongers up. Let’s hope so!

Reprinted with permission.

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Napolitano: Kavanaugh "is at the heart and soul of the DC establishment."

07/10/2018Mises Institute

Not surprisingly, Judge Napolitano sees the Kavanaugh appointment for what it is — a nod to the DC establishment. On Fox and Friends this morning, Napolitano said:

“The Washington establishment, sometimes known as the swamp, wanted Judge Kavanaugh,” said Napolitano. “I am disappointed in the president because this is not the type of person he said he would pick. Justice [Neil] Gorsuch was. This person is at the heart and soul of the D.C. establishment against whom the president railed.”

See the video:

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Newman on the Tom Woods Show: The Progressive Era Was a Scam

04/24/2018Patrick Newman

Patrick Newman joined the Tom Woods Show yesterday to talk about the Murray Rothbard book he edited on the Progressive Era.

Check out the episode here. 

 

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NY Man Builds His Own Highway Off Ramp

04/10/2018Tho Bishop

One of the best stories I've seen recently comes from Irving, New York, where a man has decided to build his own highway off ramp for his tobacco store. This story has it all, tax evasion, Indian tribal sovereignty, and an answer to the question "who will build the road?" The video is worth watching.

As WRAL reports:

Eric White is a member of the Seneca Indian Tribe and owns the “Big Indian Smoke Shop” in Irving, New York.

He is reportedly building the ramp as part of a personal protest after losing a legal battle with the state over allegedly selling untaxed cigarettes.

Through his attorney, Mr. White is defending his move by evoking the sovereignty of tribal land, a point that the Federal Highway Administration doesn't know how to respond to. 

Just another reason why tribal sovereignty is so important

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New from Hunter Lewis: Economics in Three Lessons!

For years, people have demanded an update to Henry Hazlitt's 1946 best seller Economics in One Lesson. Now we have one.

In Economics in Three Lessons, Hunter Lewis brings Hazlitt's timeless wisdom to the 21st Century.

Even better, Lewis includes an additional work, One Hundred Economic Laws. Finally, an easy to reference collection of axioms to refute the economic fallacies from either the left or the right.

A complete course in economics, in just one short book.

Available now in the Mises Store for $8.95

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Neocons Are Back With a Big War Budget and Big War Plans

03/26/2018Ron Paul

On Friday, President Trump signed the omnibus spending bill for 2018. The $1.3 trillion bill was so monstrous that it would have made the biggest spender in the Obama Administration blush. The image of leading Congressional Democrats Pelosi and Schumer grinning and gloating over getting everything they wanted — and then some — will likely come back to haunt Republicans at the midterm elections. If so, they will deserve it.

Even President Trump admitted the bill was horrible. As he said in the signing ceremony, “there are a lot of things that we shouldn’t have had in this bill, but we were, in a sense, forced — if we want to build our military…”

This is why I often say: forget about needing a third political party — we need a second political party! Trump is admitting that to fuel the warfare state and enrich the military-industrial complex, it was necessary to dump endless tax dollars into the welfare state.

But no one “forced” President Trump to sign the bill. His party controls both houses of Congress. He knows that no one in Washington cares about deficits so he was more than willing to spread some Fed-created money at home to get his massive war spending boost.

And about the militarism funded by the bill? Defense Secretary James Mattis said at the same press conference that, “As the President noted, today we received the largest military budget in history, reversing many years of decline and unpredictable funding.”

He’s right and wrong at the same time. Yes it is another big increase in military spending. In fact the US continues to spend more than at least the next seven or so largest countries combined. But his statement is misleading. Where are these several years of decline? Did we somehow miss a massive reduction in military spending under President Obama? Did the last Administration close the thousands of military bases in more than 150 countries while we weren’t looking?

Of course not.

On militarism, the Obama Administration was just an extension of the Bush Administration, which was an extension of the militarism of the Clinton Administration. And so on. The military-industrial complex continues to generate record profits from fictitious enemies. The mainstream media continues to play the game, amplifying the war propaganda produced by the think tanks, which are funded by the big defense contractors.

This isn’t a conspiracy theory. This is conspiracy fact. Enemies must be created to keep Washington rich, even as the rest of the country suffers from the destruction of the dollar. That is why the neocons continue to do very well in this Administration.

While Trump and Mattis were celebrating big military spending increases, the president announced that John Bolton, one of the chief architects of the Iraq war debacle, would become his national security advisor. As former CIA analyst Paul Pillar has written, this is a man who, while at the State Department, demanded that intelligence analysts reach pre-determined conclusions about Iraq and WMDs. He cooked the books for war.

Bolton is on the record calling for war with Iran, North Korea, even Cuba! His return to a senior position in government is a return to the unconstitutional, immoral, and failed policies of pre-emptive war.

Make no mistake: the neocons are back and looking for another war. They’ve got the president’s ear. Iran? North Korea? Russia? China? Who’s next for the warmongers?

Reprinted with permission.

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New Course on Development Economics with GP Manish

01/24/2018Mises Institute

In 2017, the US spent more than $50 billion on foreign aid. Why then are so many of the countries receiving this aid still living in dire poverty with starvation as a constant threat? Why doesn't this aid foster economic growth and development in those regions? Because just throwing money at a problem, foreign aid in this case, simply doesn't work.

So then, what are the prerequisites for economic development? What will improve standards of living? These are some of the issues addressed in a new course, Development Economics: An Austrian Perspective. G.P. Manish will explain the roles time preference and capital accumulation play in economic development as well as the importance of a fully integrated structure of production. He wraps up the course with a case study of economic development — and economic disaster — in India since gaining its independence from Great Britain in 1947.

This course is for independent study, free, and available to be taken anytime. The Mises Institute appreciates your support for continuing the creation of more courses in the Mises Academy.

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New Audiobook!

12/20/2017Mises Institute

To understand the modern state, you must understand the Progressive Era. Thanks to the generosity of Mr. Tyler Folger, Murray Rothbard's definitive book on the Progressives is now available as a free audiobook.

The audio files are currently available on iTunes, Google PlaySoundcloud, and Mises.org.

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New Issue of the Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics: Summer 2017

12/13/2017Ryan McMaken
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New Audiobook!

12/12/2017Mises Institute

The Theory of Money and Credit, Ludwig von Mises's 1953 treatise on monetary theory, is now available as a free audiobook narrated by Jim Vann.

In a step-by-step manner, Mises presents the case for sound money with no inflation, and presents the beginnings of a full-scale business cycle theory.

The audio files are currently available on Soundcloud and Mises.org.

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