Obama’s Cairo speech: a libertarian view

As a libertarian, I found a lot to like in Obama’s Cairo speech; certainly, it was entertaining to hear the likes of Limbaugh go completely insane upon hearing it.

If you get your news entirely from Neocon Warmonger Radio (heaven help you!), then you heard that Obama “apologized” for America (I heard no apology–did you?), that he never praised America (I heard him say lots of nice things about America–did you? Read the speech), that he never condemned Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons (to this day, no one has produced a shred of evidence that such a program even exists), and that he drew “moral equivalence” between the plight of the Jews in Nazi Germany, and the plight of Palestinians (he mentioned both in the speech; he did not say they were “equivalent”).

But why waste our precious bandwidth responding to Neocon whack-jobs?

As a libertarian, I can take some hope that there might be a slight curtailment in Washington’s attempt to invade and conquer the entire Middle East. Obama at least rejects cartoon depiction of Muslims as hate-mongering fanatics all willing to kill non-Muslims in order to gain paradise.

On the other hand, there is no indication Obama intends to do the right, moral, and practical thing: renounce Washington’s imperial ambitions, withdraw all troops from foreign countries, and reduce the defense budget to what is sufficient to prevent foreign invasions. It seems Obama wants to put a friendly face on American global hegemony. Or, if you prefer, a nice velvet wrapping around the iron fist.

If such an approach can slow down the expansion of US interventionism, I am all for it. I am, however, no Pollyanna. Under Obama, America is likely to expand the Middle East war into Pakistan and (unless Obama can resist the goading of Israel) Iran. Regarding the latter, Obama seems to understand and agree that Iran has every right to develop nuclear power, as a signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty. So like I say, there is–at least–some degree of hope.

But in essential terms, we still find ourselves attempting to run an empire–a delusion that will quicken our economic collapse. What we need is a complete rejection of global interventionism–something that only Ron Paul and his small but devoted contingent of supporters dare to advocate.

So, as a libertarian, my heart says Obama’s approach at least feels a little better. But my head says there is no sign of a fundamentally new approach.