While the left is constantly screaming that Beck is some kind of nutcase that “hates America,” he’s been moving more and more to a true constitutional position, one that’s separating him from the establishment hacks on both sides of the political aisle…and one that includes positions he often denounced just a few years ago.
Like his latest insight – America’s imperial foreign policy has nothing to do with the founders’ vision for this country, and has been promoted by republicans and democrats alike. Here’s what he had to say:
I am becoming more and more libertarian every day, I guess the scales are falling off of my eyes, as I’m doing more and more research into history and learning real history. Back at the turn of the century in 1900, with Teddy Roosevelt—a Republican—we started this, “we’re going to tell the rest of the world,” “we’re going to spread democracy,” and we really became, down in Latin America, we really became thuggish and brutish. It only got worse with the next progressive that came into office—Teddy Roosevelt, Republican progressive—the next one was a Democratic progressive, Woodrow Wilson, and we did … we empire built. The Democrats felt we needed to empire build with one giant global government … The Republicans took it as, we’re going to lead the world and we’ll be the leader of it … I don’t think we should be either of those. I think we need to mind our own business and protect our own people. When somebody hits us, hit back hard, then come home.
Bravo, Mr Beck!
To get a little more insight on this, read Jack Hunter’s latest article, “An Unpatriotic Conservative.”
Michael Boldin [send him email] is the founder of the Tenth Amendment Center. He was raised in Milwaukee, WI, and currently resides in Los Angeles, CA. Follow him on twitter - @michaelboldin, on LinkedIn, and on Facebook.
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I'm becoming more and more of an isolationist (yes, i've been listening to Ron Paul). This doesn't mean we shouldn't kick ass when we need to but simply means we don't put ourselves into a position where we have to fight in some war. Think of tawain. It would be terrible if it got overran by the Chinese but, as sympathetic as I would be about that, I would not care enough to sacrifice my life for their cause. This is the true value of isolationism and that is is that it keeps our government from declaring wars for its purpose. Wars fought in the 19th century always had causes the people believed in but wars fought in the 20th century were fought for one's country. While their is nothing wrong with fighting for your country we need to realize that without a cause associated with it that you believe in enough to fight over then fighting for one's country just becomes fighting for a cause the politician's believe in.
I agree that America has done some great things internationally in defense of freedom, but we have also been engaged in conflicts where perhaps that distinction was not quite so clear. Most importantly, if you look around the world today, America's slip in prestige has nothing to do with whether it is George Bush or Barack Obama who is addressing the U.N. Security Council, and everything to do with the fact that we don't live out at home the ideals of liberty we claim to champion.
The bottom line is that we need to get our own house in order before we can knock on other people's doors and tell them we have all the answers. We who have the courage to admit what our eyes and experience tell us know that a centralized government is a wasteful, tyrannical, and unsustainable one. There is no question it was not the sort of government intended by the men who wrote our Constitution.
Can a federated republic dictate global policy to other nations?
I don't know, but the real question is: Are we fundamentally a stronger nation if we live up to our own constitutional principles at home?
I think the answer to that is unequivocally "yes."
So we should lead by example, returning to the federalism of the Constitution, and trust the rest of the world to see the wisdom of freedom and liberty in their own time and in their own way.
This is one area where I have an internal debate. I like the strength of this nation. I like that we have had the ability to defend liberty on an international stage from the assaults of the NAZIs and the Imperial Japanese, from the international communists. I think had we not had this "national strength" we might not be here to fight against the loss of our liberties domestically. There has to be a balance. We need our government to have a small footprint domestically, defending and supporting liberty, living within its constitutional limits, yet still able to perform its role internationally defending, and even projecting, the philosophy of individual rights, individual liberty to people all over the world. Is this possible to achieve? Can we be a nation of strength in the world, and still a federation of sovereign states at home?
Lead by example, not by force - that was the intention of the founders. They wanted this country - as Sam Adams put it so well - to be "an asylum on earth, for civil and religious liberty."
To even think of projecting the principles of liberty from a country that doesn't practice it at home is something that doesn't make sense to me at all. I think Beck is definitely going in the right direction on this.
McGozer, I think that we can.........but we have to think "Defense," not Offense. The Constitution speaks of "defence" against aggressors both foreign and domestic. For years I worked in the defense industry building offensive weaponry because I liked the company and the technical challenges. But I was never so happy as when I got a chance to work on TV satellites and weather stations, etc. I'll never forget those tirades by Teddy K. (aka the senator from Chappaquiddick) against building defensive hardware systems.
Glenn is searching for a solution to the problem, as many have done. Another answer is to remove the problem rather than solve it, remove the fuel that feeds the corruption. Our federal government is not supposed to be the most powerful governmental institution in our lives. At any given time most Americans response to a question, "did you see what they did in Washington today?" should be, "who cares." The answer Glenn is looking for is the reduction in size, scope, power, and expense of federal government. You cannot dangle a carrot made up of several trillions of dollars in front of the power seekers and not expect them to chase it and bend it to their own benefit. I wonder if it is even possible to return to a constitutionally limited federal republic?
Here's James Madison on the subject:
"Of all the enemies to public liberty war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes; and armies, and debts, and taxes are the known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few. In war, too, the discretionary power of the Executive is extended; its influence in dealing out offices, honors, and emoluments is multiplied; and all the means of seducing the minds, are added to those of subduing the force, of the people. . . . [There is also an] inequality of fortunes, and the opportunities of fraud, growing out of a state of war, and . . . degeneracy of manners and of morals. . . . No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare. . . ."
Josh - an excellent point. He's taking some really good positions on individual federal policies, but not recognizing that "voting the bums out" is just us the lesser of two evils every year....which results in a constant growth of government. And, of course, a loss of liberty.
He's covered the 10th Amendment Movement here and there - and we've been in touch with his producers, but he hasn't really touched on the issue much since this past spring. We'll continue to contact his producers to try to get more coverage, but I think it'll take more viewers demanding it.
If only Glenn Beck could make the intellectual leap from "libertarianism" to state sovereignty. He spends so much time bemoaning the corruption in Washington, D.C., but it seems the best solution he can come up with is to "throw the bums out." No offense, Glenn, but that's been tried before and all we got were different bums.
The necessity of states' rights and of restoring the federalist system would seem to be a natural conclusion for anyone who really understands that the incentives in Washington are all wrong, and that the problems in this country can't be fixed from inside the Beltway. But so far I haven't heard Beck talk much about the 10th Amendment or state sovereignty at all.
Let's hope he gets it soon. We could sure use a voice as influential as his to help make the philosophical, moral, and constitutional case for states' rights. That might just be the push this movement needs to really get rolling downhill.