informationliberation
The news you're not supposed to know...




An Introduction to Austrian Economics: Understand Economics, Understand Everything
The Century of the Self: The Untold History of Controlling the Masses Through the Manipulation of Unconscious Desires
The Disappearing Male: From Virility to Sterility

The Obama Deception: The Mask Comes Off
Operation Gladio: The Hidden History of U.S. Sponsored False Flag Terrorism in EuropeThe New American Century: The Untold History of The Project for the New American Century
(more)
Article posted Jul 12 2013, 4:05 AM Category: Commentary Source: Jacob G. Hornberger Print

Conservative Blind Spots on Snowden

by Jacob G. Hornberger

In their haste to condemn Edward Snowden for revealing the NSA's massive secret spy scheme on the American people, conservatives are rushing to point out how the countries that Snowden is considering for asylum -- e.g., Venezuela, Bolivia, and Nicaragua -- are themselves not exactly bastions of freedom. They are countries in which there is socialism, interventionism, regulation, censorship, and, yes, even secret surveillance of people's activity.

But conservatives are missing some important points here.

First, Snowden isn't selecting countries in which to live by how free they are. He's trying to find a place in which he can escape the clutches of the U.S. government, which is doing everything it can to bring him back to the United States for prosecution, torture, incarceration, and even execution for disclosing its secret surveillance system to the American people and the people of the world.

Ask yourself: If you had a choice of whether to live in a country which is riddled with statism and a country in which you were going to be waterboarded 100 times, or sent into solitary confinement for 10 years as part of a life sentence, or executed by lethal injection, which would you choose? Why I'll bet that even some conservatives would select the former notwithstanding their complaint that Snowden should select the latter.

Second, conservatives are famous for focusing their attention on the statism of foreign regimes rather than on the statism of their very own government. We witnessed this phenomenon especially during the Cold War, when conservatives were writing article after article and giving speech after speech about the horrors of life in the Soviet Union or communist China and ignoring such things here at home as the rise of the national-security state, the hiring of former Nazis, the infamous MKULTRA project, the assassination programs, the support of brutal dictators, torture, the invasion of Vietnam, regime-change operations, foreign coups, state-sponsored terrorism against Cuba, and other dark-side practices.

Conservatives can't -- or won't -- see that America, with its ever-increasing embrace of statism, is becoming like those other countries that conservatives are criticizing. Conservatives have convinced themselves that American statism is a good thing while statism in countries like Venezuela, Bolivia, and Nicaragua is a bad thing.

For example, conservatives are pointing out the economic disaster in Venezuela, which they say is a result of governmental mismanagement of the economy. But here at home, what do they advocate? They embrace a way of life based on government management of the economy. They just think that Americans, and especially conservatives, are better at managing an economy than Latin Americans. Like their statist counterparts in Venezuela, they scoff at the libertarian notion of a genuine free-market society, one in which government plays no role in the economy whatsoever.

Consider such welfare-state programs as Social Security, Medicare, subsidies, and education grants. Conservatives love the fact that they are the core of America's economic system. At the same time, they poke fun at Latin American countries for their embrace of socialist programs. The conservative notion is that Americans are better able to run statist programs than Latin Americans are. Never mind that socialist programs in America are in perpetual crisis, just like they are in Latin America.

Consider government surveillance of the citizenry, the controversy raised by Snowden's revelations. Conservatives are hopping mad at the disclosures. They call it treason. But then they turn around and criticize Venezuela, Bolivia, and Nicaragua for, yes, having surveillance schemes on their citizenry! How can surveillance by Latin American regimes be a bad thing and surveillance by the U.S. government to be a good thing?

Conservatives just don't get it. Statism in those other countries is certainly a bad thing. But it's also a bad thing here in the United States. Conservatives should focus their attention on statism here at home and help us libertarians to lead the world out of the statist morass through example by dismantling, not reforming, the statism under which we Americans are suffering.
_
Jacob G. Hornberger is founder and president of The Future of Freedom Foundation. He was born and raised in Laredo, Texas, and received his B.A. in economics from Virginia Military Institute and his law degree from the University of Texas. He was a trial attorney for twelve years in Texas. He also was an adjunct professor at the University of Dallas, where he taught law and economics. In 1987, Mr. Hornberger left the practice of law to become director of programs at the Foundation for Economic Education. He has advanced freedom and free markets on talk-radio stations all across the country as well as on Fox News' Neil Cavuto and Greta van Susteren shows and he appeared as a regular commentator on Judge Andrew Napolitano's show Freedom Watch. View these interviews at LewRockwell.com and from Full Context. Send him email.





Latest Commentary
- The War on Drugs Was Born 100 Years Ago
- What America Wannabe?
- Judicial Deference to the Torturers
- Ross Ulbricht Should Be Freed in a Fair Trial
- Government Save Us From "Overpriced" Chinese Food
- I Love Loosies and the People Who Sell Them
- Obama's Plan for Better Policing: The Good, the Bad, and the Body Cameras
- Statism: The Most Dangerous Religion (feat. Larken Rose)









No Comments Posted Add Comment


Add Comment
Name
Comment

* No HTML


Verification *
Please Enter the Verification Code Seen Below
 


PLEASE NOTE
Please see our About Page, our Disclaimer, and our Comments Policy.


FAIR USE NOTICE
This site contains copyrighted material the use of which in some cases has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available for the purposes of news reporting, education, research, comment, and criticism, which constitutes a 'fair use' of such copyrighted material in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. It is our policy to respond to notices of alleged infringement that comply with the DMCA and other applicable intellectual property laws. It is our policy to remove material from public view that we believe in good faith to be copyrighted material that has been illegally copied and distributed by any of our members or users.

About Us - Disclaimer - Privacy Policy



Advanced Search
Username:

Password:

Remember Me
Forgot Password?
Register

NY Police Union Says 'Blood On Hands' Of Police Critics - 12/21Obama's Plan for Better Policing: The Good, the Bad, and the Body Cameras - 12/09Psychotic Vegas Cop Filmed Beating Man For Filming In Viral Video Queitly Hired By Another Dept. - 12/17A Peace Officer Defies the "Blue Tribe": The Exile of Officer Cariol Horne - 12/19Ignorance Is No Excuse for Wrongdoing, Unless You're a Cop - 12/17Baby Clings to Life After Flash-Bang Grenade Lands in His Crib - 12/20Cop Stops Fellow Cop From Choking a Handcuffed Man, She Was Then Beaten and Fired - 12/18Cops Called For Wellness Check Beat Innocent Man, Pile On False Charges; Jury Exonerates, Twice - 12/17

Rialto, CA Police Made to Wear Cameras, Use of Force Drops by Over Two-ThirdsCop Who Karate Chopped NY Judge In Throat Gets Off Scot-FreeFlorida Cop Smashes Compliant Woman's Face Into Car -- "Maybe Now You Can Understand Simple Instructions"VIDEO: Lapel Cam Reveals A Day In The Life Of A U.S. Police Officer (Tasing, Beating, Breaking & Entering, Stomping On Heads... and Laughing About It)Caught On Tape: Officer Sucker Punches Inmate In Face, Files Report Claiming 'Self Defense'Insult Person On Twitter, Go To JailSWAT Team Brings TV Crew To Film Raid Against Threatening Internet Critic -- Raids Innocent Grandma InsteadCop Karate Chops NY Judge In The Throat
(more)

 
Top