Life & Liberty Magazine: David Housholder Interviewing Gary Johnson in 2012
Any chance I get to speak out and speak up for liberalism, I do that and that is exactly what this opportunity here is. Which is what I’m going to do in speaking out for liberal internationalism. David Housholder, a self-described liberal-libertarian, I guess interviewing Gary Johnson, back in 2012 about foreign affairs and national security. Governor Johnson, I at least believe he fits that same label. And I add liberal to that, because he doesn’t bash government. And say government has practically no role in serving people in need. But takes more of a federalist approach to those issues. And is not even against a strong national defense, or an isolationist. But believes America can’t defend the world by ourselves and that our partners need to contribute to that defense as well.
I haven’t seen many speeches and ideas from Gary Johnson when it comes to foreign policy and national security. But what I get from this interview back in 2012 on these issues is that we aren’t that much different, but I’m going to add a few things to it. Like with Europe and why isn’t Europe defending itself, instead of Americans taxpayers having to pay for that. Same thing with Saudi Arabia, which already has one of the largest and most developed militaries in the world. Japan and Korea, two of the largest economies in the world and two of the most developed economies in the world. And yet American taxpayers have to pay for the defense of both of those countries. That defense, should be the key word here. Protecting our own first. Working with our allies when issues like innocent people being murdered by their own government, or being invaded by a predatory country.
Not that I’m in favor of adopting the Scandinavian, or European social democratic economic model, but a big reason why their welfare states are so generous, is because they spend so little on national defense. Why is that? Because America at the expense of American taxpayers has Europe’s back when it comes to national defense. Same thing with Japan as well. We should be moving past NATO and instead Europe should develop their own European Defense Force as either part of the European Union, or some new federal European state. And be the main provider for their own defense. And that would mean they would need to spend 3-4% of their own resources to do this. Which would be an economic boom for them and allow for them to bring their unemployment way down. America, Canada, Turkey, the Slavic states not including Russia, could still be major partners with Europe.
I believe the main difference between the liberal internationalist model when it comes to foreign policy and national security and the neoconservative model and the libertarian-socialist model, comes to use of force.
Neoconservatives, base their foreign policy and national security policy almost if not squarely on the use of force. They believe you always have to sound tough and be able to back up your verbal toughness. That there’s nothing that America can’t do by itself when it comes to the military. That money is no object even debt and deficits when it comes to national security. You spend whatever it takes at all costs and then perhaps figure out how to pay for that spending down the road.
Then you move over to the libertarian-socialist model when it comes to foreign policy and national security. Combine former U.S. Representative’s Ron Paul with Dennis Kucinich, they were actually friends in Congress and worked with each other on these issues. You combine Libertarians with Social Democrats, or Socialists and you have a libertarian-socialist dovish isolationist foreign policy. Where they believe America could do well by cutting our national defense by 2/3 if not more. Libertarians, would use that money to get rid of the income tax. Socialists, would use that money to bring the Scandinavian welfare state to America. And we wouldn’t even work with our allies when there’s horrible human rights crisis’s around the world. Other than maybe supplying humanitarian aid to certain countries.
What the Liberal-Internationalist says and I’m one and so was Jack Kennedy, my political hero and a lot of other Liberal Democrats were and are, is that you have to be strong both at home and abroad. But that your partners have to play their part as well. They either pay you for their defense, or they invest their own resources to defend themselves. So yes, pull all of our Americans troops and bases out of Europe, Saudi Arabia, Japan and Korea. Or have them pay us for their defense. But you don’t act just because you’re strong enough to act. You act when your national security is at stake. When human rights are being abused like a lot of people being murdered. When you can play a positive difference. And you work with your allies when the situations come up. The differences between Smart Power, which is what liberal internationalism is. Versus shoot first and ask questions later. The neoconservative model. And No Power, the dovish isolationist model.