North Texas Objectivist Society (NTOS) Message Board › Election between Sam Johnson, Republican and Robert Johnson, Republican (onc

Election between Sam Johnson, Republican and Robert Johnson, Republican (once ran as Libertarian in FL)

Old Toad
OldToad
Group Organizer
Dallas, TX
Post #: 148
In his RSVP to our Meetup on Jan. 7th, 2006, Robert Johnson wrote:
"I am on the ballot against Sam Johnson as a Republican who voted for the Prescription Drug Benefit, for so-called No Child Left Behind, and has mentioned nuking Syria and torturing prisoners. I hope all Collin County folks will vote March 7."


In Dean Cook's RSVP to the same meetup, he wrote in response:
"Robert J., I disagree with your foreign policy views, so I don't think I can vote for you. If you ever decide to run for state legislature instead, I might consider it, since that doesn't involve foreign policy."

I like the fact that we start discussions even in the process of making an RSVP! I copy the issue here, though, to give us a better forum for the issues.

Unless Dean is referring to something Robert said outside his RSVP, perhaps in personal discussion at one of our meetups, it seems that Dean is saying he agrees with the statements Robert attributes to Sam Johnson in favor of "nuking Syria and torturing prisoners." I don't think Dean means this, so perhaps he would clearify what he does mean?

-- Todd
Santiago Valenzue...
sanjavalen
Dallas, TX
Post #: 34
Couldn't he run as an independent? sad
Old Toad
OldToad
Group Organizer
Dallas, TX
Post #: 149
Correction: Bob Johnson is now running as a Republican. My understanding is that he once ran in FL as a Libertarian.

-- Todd
Dan
dbclawyer
Allen, TX
Post #: 10
Given Syria's role in supporting Islamic fanatics, I would support all military action--to include the use of nuclear weapons--taken against it.

Now that I have unburdened myself . . . .

I agree with Dean's comment that Robert might deserve support running for state legislature.
Old Toad
OldToad
Group Organizer
Dallas, TX
Post #: 150
Dan wrote:
Given Syria's role in supporting Islamic fanatics, I would support all military action--to include the use of nuclear weapons--taken against it.

My understanding is that foreign policy should be guided and informed by the principle of self-defense. But does the principle of international self-defense have any proportionality associated with it? Does any international agression, no matter how large or how small, justify unlimited nuclear response?

Assuming, for example, that a few smart bombs would be sufficient to force the Syrian government to stop supporting terrorism and even to take affirmative steps to suppress it, would it be moral to nuke the entire country? Assuming my hypothetical, to nuke the entire country would seem to go way beyond what would be necessary under the principle of self-defense, turning the US into an aggessor.

What am I missing, or were you just joking?

-- Todd
Santiago Valenzue...
sanjavalen
Dallas, TX
Post #: 37
Dan wrote:
Given Syria's role in supporting Islamic fanatics, I would support all military action--to include the use of nuclear weapons--taken against it.

My understanding is that foreign policy should be guided and informed by the principle of self-defense. But does the principle of international self-defense have any proportionality associated with it? Does any international agression, no matter how large or how small, justify unlimited nuclear response?

Assuming, for example, that a few smart bombs would be sufficient to force the Syrian government to stop supporting terrorism and even to take affirmative steps to suppress it, would it be moral to nuke the entire country? Assuming my hypothetical, to nuke the entire country would seem to go way beyond what would be necessary under the principle of self-defense, turning the US into an aggessor.

What am I missing, or were you just joking?

-- Todd

In a lawless society, one where there is no police and one retains the right to retaliatory force, you may kill any criminal you come across. A person's rights are absolutes; to violate them puts yourself diametrically opposed to every last man who respects them, and in addition you have no way of putting him in prison or anything like that; you must deal with them and move on.

Analogous to this, a country that does not respect individual rights has no legitimacy; it may be destroyed, overthrown and have something else put in in its place, but it cannot (at any time) be respected as "sovreign" as so many people are obsessed with today.

But yes, unlimited nuclear response is a valid, if extreme, option. I personally do not think its the most effective way to get the job done (living people are far more productive, after all,) but I have no problem with the response in principle.
A former member
Post #: 45
At the risk of being called an "inquisitor",

From what I recall of Robert's comments in the past, his foreign policy views seem in line with the libertarian party and the Cato Instutute. (Which basically seems to be that you can't attack another country in self defense; you have to wait until they have physically sent troops accross your border before you can defend yourself.) I also recall Robert saying at a meeting at Sam Lisook's, quite some time ago, that he was opposed to Leonard Peikoff's view that Iran should be attacked by the US. I don't consider Robert's views to be morally bad, but they are mistaken. (I also think he seems like a nice enough fellow on a personal level.)

I regard the primary role of the Federal government to be national security. Therefore, I regard a politician's views on foreign policy to be of paramount importance if he is running for Federal office. That is why I say I wouldn't vote for Robert for Congress, but I would consider voting for him for state legislature, because his foreign policy views wouldn't really be relevant at that level.

(If I have mischaracterized Robert's views on foreign policy, then I appologize in advance.)
A former member
Post #: 2
I've only just now read the furor my original RSVP caused, though I gathered some of it from my discussion later at the meeting. I have several comments:
I think it's a bit odd that Dean said he couldn't vote for me based on a snippet on foreign policy. First of all, I also pointed out that the "conservative" "Republican" (frequently accused falsely of being a libertarian leaning Republican, which would be a bit odd for someone opposing decriminalizing marijuana for medical use) whom I'm opposing voted for two of the most whorish Bush bills: Leaving No Child Behind and the Prescription Drug Benefit. The latter is so whorish that even Lush Bimbo opposed it on the air, and the cost of both combined is over 30% higher than the yearly cost of the Iraq war. Yet someone can't see getting $1800 per family stolen from them for greater Federal control over education and health care as a valid reason to vote for me even though I bear the warts of actually suggesting that MAYBE Sam's 'nuke Syria' and 'torture prisoners' remarks weren't too smart? I hope Dean will also remember the context: that Sam had said the WMD must still exist (gee, this was in Feb. 19, 2005 after Tenet had already been fired in June 2004 since the WMD DIDN'T exist). that they must be in Syria (yeah, THAT'S brilliant, why would they have hid them if they had them? wouldn't they have USED them on our troops), and AFTER that he volunteered to fly an F15 with a couple of A-bombs to nuke a nation that has not only never bothered us but was an ally in Desert Storm - which is another reason Sam's comments about the WMD being in Syria are even MORE idiotic. Are there EVER times we should use nukes? Hell, yes, and Nagasaki was one of them. We'd already used on on Hiroshima three days before, so even if THAT usage was due to 'mistranslation' as some have said, wouldn't you think they'd have gotten back to us SOMETIME IN THOSE THREE DAYS? So NO, I'm not some sort of peacenik, but I'm not a genocidal maniac either. Sam Johnson IS.

I also hope that I cleared up some of what was said about the Libertarian Party not being for using pre-emptive force. In fact, Dean himself mentioned that while Nolan and Russo felt that even invading Afghanistan AFTER 9/11 was wrong, Badnarik (who became the standard bearer) was FOR the invasion. I'd go further and say that we should have cleaned them out BEFORE 9/11, just as we might want to think about cleaning out Somalia now before another group similar to Al Qaeda uses them as a base a la Afghanistan.

The last writer was correct that I had said at the Lisooks that I thought both Bush's and Peikoff's visceral hatred of Iran as part of an Axis of Evil was weirdly misguided in that Iran had been going in the CORRECT direction back in 2001. I also pointed out that including Iraq, Iran, and North Korea as an AXIS of evil was a bit weird in that they all had no ideological interconnection, or even alliance of convenience, even though they were all repulsive governments in terms of their effect on their own people, and sometimes on others. The point I made at the recent meeting was that perhaps I was JUSTIFIED in my critique concerning Iran just after 9/11. In other words, even before Iraq, Bush was jawboning Iran in a negative way. Then once we invaded Iraq, we demonstrated to Iran that if you DON'T have WMD, you get overthrown. Thus, is it any surprise that Iran not only fast-forwarded the tape on getting their own NUCLEAR WMD, but have also started going in the WRONG direction again via Ahmadinejad? Thus, even if you think the invasion of Iraq had good SHORT term consequences, I think the potential negative longer term results are equally clear, and that's just concerning Iran, not even counting negative blowback to us someday for terrorism as retaliation for what we did to Iraq. First Madrid, then London this last SUmmer, and someday, soon, coming to a major US city near you, retaliation against the USA.
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