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by Brendan Trainor.  [February 2, 2006]





[]  President George Bush's State of the Union Address to the Congress last night was an eerie demonstration of how non-reality based his administration has become.

He spent over half the speech talking about the State of the Union in other countries. As opposition to his ill-conceived War in Iraq grows, he felt compelled to justify his failed policies by talking as if he were the President of the Middle East, and not of America.  At one point, he presumed to address the "people of Iran" directly!  Libertarians can only ask -- just whose President spoke last night?

Bush used the word "Isolationist" five times last night.  The word was coined by a Democratic President, FDR, as a pejorative term for Bush's own Republican Party.  Those were the days when the word Republican meant "Defend America First."  Now it means "Invade the World."

Beyond that, Bush's use of isolationism creates a straw man.  The choice is not between isolationism and his policy.  The real choice lies somewhere in between.

In fact, Bush is the real isolationist.  He deals with nations he does not like by isolating them from the world community, and if that fails, by "regime change."  The proper response, which worked well with China and other nations, is engagement on many levels.  For Libertarians, the best foreign policy remains that of Washington and Jefferson -- Friendship, Trade, no Entangling Alliances.



When the President finally came around to the actual state of the American Union, his words revealed again that the Republican Party has lost its libertarian vision that inspired America for a few brief moments in 1994.  It has settled into a comfortable ruling class mode of governance that has led to the biggest federal spending spree since that last Texan in the White House, Lyndon Baines Johnson.

While tax cuts should remain permanent, the Republicans under Bush have expressed little interest in the real job at hand-cutting spending. Last time I looked, the Department of Education, Energy, HUD, IRS -- even their favorite whipping boy, the National Endowment for the Arts -- still exist. Not only exist, but continue to flourish under a Republican Congress and President.

New Departments such as Homeland Security have been added to the federal stew of misplaced priorities, misplaced billions of dollars, pork barrel spending, corrupt cronyism, attacks on civil liberties, and a growing national debt that sits like the elephant in the living room.

As that elephant does what it does naturally, Libertarians hope that Americans who can't stand the smell will flee to the real party of limited government and individual rights -- The Libertarian Party, the Party of Principle, not Pork!


Brendan Trainor is the chair of the Libertarian Party of Nevada.

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