Rand Paul Was Almost Proud of President Obama Coming to Congress on Syria, Until He Heard He Didn’t Think He Needed It

he guaranteesPBSSecretary of State John Kerry, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, and General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, testified at a just concluded hearing at the the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on intervention in Syria (See highlights via Reason 24/7’s livetweeting). Rand Paul spoke toward the end, telling John Kerry he was ready to stand up and clap for the president for going to Congress on war in Syria, until he heard, as usual, that there was a but. He asked Kerry to declare that Congress’ vote on Syria would be binding, adding that it’s very likely Congress will approve it. Otherwise, Paul said, the vote would just be “theater.” Paul also questioned the Obama Administration’s assumption that Bashar Assad will respond rationally to a deterrent action by the US when the use of chemical weapons wasn’t rational in the first place. Kerry insisted throughout, "guaranteed" in fact, that the decision not to intervene would have adverse consequences.

Watch the exchange below:

More Reason on Rand Paul here, on Syria here, and on Rand Paul and Syria here.

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  • ||

    Kerry insisted throughout, "guaranteed" in fact, that the decision not to intervene would have adverse consequences.

    I don't think a personal guarantee from John Kerry would sway me to do anything. Maybe if he guaranteed me he was on fire, I might piss on him.

  • Sevo||

    ..."Maybe if he guaranteed me he was on fire, I might piss on him."

    Not me. I'd only piss on him if he weren't.

  • Spiny Norman||

    I'd be willing to piss on him in either situation. Who could turn down an opportunity like that?

  • Marshall Gill||

    Nope, if Kerry were dying of thirst I wouldn't piss to save him.

    Put out a fire? You guys are way more out there than I am. I don't place the family jewels, as a rule, near open flame. But that is just me.

  • Drake||

    Seriously, what the fuck is going on with John Kerry's head? It's very disturbing.

  • ChrisO||

    Botox?

  • Spiny Norman||

    You mean inside it?

  • ChrisO||

    It's empty. That's what going on inside it.

  • PapayaSF||

  • John Galt||

    No clue, but, cover the children's eyes!

  • Lady Bertrum||

    While I appreciate the effort, it's more obvious now that Rand isn't going to win this one.

  • Irish||

    Yeah, it's looking like they'll vote in favor of war.

    Of course, I don't think you can say Rand isn't going to win this one. Long term you've got the Republicans and Democrats colluding in favor of a war that the American public unequivocally does not want. The more libertarian wing of the Republican party, particularly Amash and Paul, although Cruz might count as well, are making it known that they oppose this intervention and that no good can come of it.

    The less neo-con wing of the Republican party is clearly coming down on the side favored by most Americans, and hopefully this will help with the continued growth of libertarianism within the Republican Party. The more the libertarians show themselves in tune with public sympathies and explain why their way will work best, the better we'll be in the long run.

  • Lady Bertrum||

    The more the libertarians show themselves in tune with public sympathies and explain why their way will work best, the better we'll be in the long run.

    Well said.

  • XM||

    Who will actually vote for any kind of military intervention in Syria? Another election is just around the corner and the public doesn't want anything to do with the middle east. All of our allies are either out or floating ideas about doing something without actually committing to it.

    America might be tiring of wars, but that doesn't mean they're libertarian. Nor will they bother to distinguish Rand Paul as some "new libertarian Republican". People might be upset initially if Obama ordered air strikes without congressional approval, but they'll go on with their lives and vote Hillary in 3 years.

    You have to remember that for a lot of people, we're just "tea partiers" who hate ANYTHING government. When Christie trash talked libertarians, the only people who got worked up were libertarians and conservatives.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    Americans aren't terribly ideological when it comes to voting, but they will not see this as a point in favor of anyone proposing it. They are selling the hell out of this war, but no one is buying it. The Dem party requires a certain level of enthusiasm to win; the Republican party generally gets elected when Dems are perceived to be too out of touch or too incompetent. With Syria, they've established themselves as having both of those things going on in the only area where Obama's rule was generally liked (foreign policy).

  • Hyperion||

    Don't forget, war boner. When you have a raging war boner, there is no blood left to fuel your brain.

    This is why the GOP establishment and the Dem establishment will vote lockstep for this they way they do every war. They see war as a way to secure their power over the sheeple.

  • Irish||

    America might be tiring of wars, but that doesn't mean they're libertarian. Nor will they bother to distinguish Rand Paul as some "new libertarian Republican". People might be upset initially if Obama ordered air strikes without congressional approval, but they'll go on with their lives and vote Hillary in 3 years.

    If the establishment didn't think there was a legitimate threat of an anti-government movement restricting their power, than Christie wouldn't have bothered trash talking about libertarians in the first place.

    You don't trash talk someone you don't think can beat you. If they really thought we were as 'beneath them' as they try to claim, then they wouldn't spend so much time thinking about us.

  • ||

    then Christie...

    AND

    I've been wrong before, but I don't see Congress voting for war when so many are against it. Not buying that this is a slam dunk. Any pol voting for war, at this point in time, will pay dearly.

  • Irish||

    If they really thought we were as 'beneath them' as they try to claim, then they wouldn't spend so much time thinking about us.

    I got it right the second time, jerk.

  • ||

    ;-)

  • XM||

    If the nation and the GOP was turning libertarian, then Christie (Obama's best pal) wouldn't denigrate his own party for being too libertarian. He would kiss Rand Paul's ring to prove that he was "libertarian" all along - or something.

    The public wants to stay out, but I doubt Rand Paul or the libertarians will get much credit for pushing non intervention from the beginning. Obama isn't asking for congressional authorization because he fears the opposition. He took some heat from multiple scandals (illegal recess appointments, IRS fiasco, Snowden) so he has to appear as acting transparently.

    "I have the authority to intervene in Syria, but I want to do this the right way" - that's what he's saying.

  • ||

    neo-con wing of the Republican party

    The run up to this has been surreal. One of my prog friends has gone off the deep end and has been spouting neo-con rhetoric all over the place and when I commented on it to another lefty friend joked back "but of course, Obama is the BEST neocon" and started grumbling about how shitty it was to have a third Bush term.

    If you want to depth-check your friends' commitment to team politics, now is the time to do it.

  • ||

    Good insight, and well put Irish. You win the thread.

  • Slammer||

    I'm glad they could all have a big fucking laugh about it.

  • ||

    Seriously. Pompous laugh.

    And what the fuck is Kerry talking about?

    Not a war in a classic sense? They want to ATTACK another country. How is that NOT an act of war? Because they do it under the guise of humanitarianism?

    Wow.

  • CatoTheElder||

    When Japan did something very similar at Pearl Harbor, Americans considered it an act of war even though the Japanese had no intention to put boots on the ground or to accomplish US regime change.

    Tojo thought his would be a limited strike to block US entry in the Asian theatre. It didn't work out that way, though.

  • Bam!||

    When a country with a far superior does it, its not an act of war: it's a peace keeping mission.

  • Bam!||

    When a country with a far superior military does it, it's not an act of war: it's a peace keeping mission.

    Fixed it for me.

  • Rock Action||

    My favorite part of that is somebody seeming (to my ears) to be chuckling about the questioning of the constitutionality of it all. Funny shit.

  • BiMonSciFiCon||

    Are you serious? Are you serious?

  • Rock Action||

    We've got to bypass this vote to find out what's in it.

  • Archduke Trousersenthusiast||

    So it's gonna be another long, protracted war, isn't it?

  • Jake W||

    Time for another war? Already? Can we finish with the last few?

  • rts||

  • Rock Action||

    Kerry actually spoke much more strongly than this blog post intimates. He "guaranteed" that Assad would use chemical/biological weapons again, not that there would be "adverse consequences." The latter leaves wiggle room; the former does not.

  • CE||

    So if the vote isn't binding, Obama is declaring himself dictator?

  • pmains||

    Well, declaring is a little strong. Making himself a dictator, sure. But he's not going to come out and declare it. That would be unseemly.

  • seguin||

    Oh, no, hee'll throw the crown into the crowd.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Not "dictator", more like Principal Citizen

  • Jim in Denver||

    Anyone who must say "I am the dictator" is no true dictator.

  • Irish||

    Note: Washington Post is reporting that video as 'John Kerry turns tables on Rand Paul.'

    Really? What I saw was Rand quoting James Madison in defense of Congressional war powers and John Kerry hemming and hawing and lying his ass off.

  • C. Anacreon||

    Rand could have made the most compelling argument in history, and Kerry could have just flapped his arm and made fart noises, and the Washington Post would still have used the same headline.

  • Sevo||

    Yep. The WaPo reports what Obama says without a laugh track.

  • ||

    Military action is war, whether you send troops or missiles.

    If I have troops and a catapult sitting in the field near an enemy fortress, and I launch a boulder out of the catapult at the castle, is that not war?

    Even if I do not have my troops physically move to the fortress, I'm attacking them. That's an act of war. Attacking Assad from outside his territory doesn't make it any less of an act of war. John Kerry is a liar.

  • Hyperion||

    Let's put it this way. If I am sitting in my sovereign country, and you are over there across the border in your sovereign country, and you start lobbing missles or whatever else you are lobbing over into my space with mal intent, then it's a fucking war.

  • ||

    "Really? What I saw was Rand quoting James Madison in defense of Congressional war powers and John Kerry hemming and hawing and lying his ass off."

    Just from reading the title, perhaps you made the wrong assumption about which way they meant that he turned the table.

  • Hugh Akston||

    I can kind of see Kerry's point when he says that nobody wants to go to war, and they're not asking Congress to declare war. Would you call it war when a SWAT team kicks down a door and shoots a man and his dog? Would you call it a war when someone breaks into a bedroom and stabs the occupants to death in their sleep? Would you call it a war if someone burns down a home with the family inside it? Of course not.

    If one of the parties is able to kill the other with little or no risk of suffering casualties, it can't rightly be called war. We need a whole other word for a thing like that.

  • John Thacker||

    I thought we called all of those things the War on Drugs?

  • ||

    (raises hand)

    Mu...murder?

  • Hugh Akston||

    I like the way you think kid. ::chomps cigar:: You might just have a future around here.

  • Archduke Trousersenthusiast||

    it's not murder when the State does it.

  • Gorilla tactics||

    procedures were followed

  • Bill Dalasio||

    "If one of the parties is able to kill the other with little or no risk of suffering casualties, it can't rightly be called war."

    So, if we were to launch an all-out and coordinated nuclear attack on a defenseless country, it wouldn't be war? That doesn't seem to make any sense.

  • JWatts||

    If we were to launch an all-out and coordinated nuclear attack on a defenseless country and a Democrat was President, it would not be war.

  • CatoTheElder||

    Hobbes would call all three war, though most people think of wars as being a violent conflict between a state and another state or non-state actor. When states are engaged in war, they explicitly make homocide legal, even compulsory in many instances.

    SWAT team raid = war; the homocide is not murder according to law

    Break-in+stabbing by "someone" = murder by stabbing

    Arson+murder = murder by arson

  • CatoTheElder||

    err ... homicide

  • ||

    You can't call it a war if only the brown people get killed. A declaration of war is ONLY required when Murikens might get killed, because Murikens are worth more than brown people.

    And killing a bunch of brown people is a small price to pay to ensure our president saves face.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Massacre?

  • R C Dean||

    So, Hugh, when the Germans invaded Poland, Belgium, and Holland, that wasn't an act of war because they were sure to win in a walk?

    For that matter, Pearl Harbor involved the Japanese killing Americans with little or no risk, etc. Nat an act of war?

  • ||

    For that matter, Pearl Harbor involved the Japanese killing Americans with little or no risk, etc.

    huh?

    They ended up getting two nukes dropped on their homeland.

    I would hate to see what you think risky is.

  • ||

    Reposted from above: What the fuck is Kerry talking about?

    Not a war in a classic sense? They want to ATTACK another country. How is that NOT an act of war? Because they do it under the guise of humanitarianism?

    None of us want war? So why attack?

    Wow.

    My apolitical, super-gifted wife (who is incidentally of half Lebanese heritage) was listening to the video in the background. Without knowing who Kerry and Rand are, she kept responding while cooking at all the logical epic fallacies Kerry threw. I asked her who made more sense, Door #1 or Door #2 (Rand)? She answered 2.

    I'm too pumped with wine to keep consistency here.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    I think the argument is that an act of war and a war are not the same thing.

    Egypt's announcement that the Straits of Tiran were closed to Israeli shipping was arguably an act of war. But if nothing had followed after that announcement it would be a bit odd to refer to it as the Egyptian-Israeli war of 1967.

    Of course, this does not make the case for military action in Syria stronger or weaker in my opinion.

  • Bill Dalasio||

    And if libertarians (and liberals) accept this line of bullshit, they owe George W. Bush an abject apology. He clearly wasn't a warmonger, since we didn't go to war. War wasn't declared, after all. Gee, I'm so glad we were able to avoid war in Iraq and Afghanistan.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    My apolitical, super-gifted wife (who is incidentally of half Lebanese heritage)

    Pics or she doesn't exist.

  • John C. Randolph||

    What the fuck is Kerry talking about?

    Kerry is engaging in that well-known Washington, D. C. pastime which people outside the Ruling Party call "lying his ass off."

    -jcr

  • ||

    Kerry is in a secret society that does not believe cannon that could be fired from an ocean bound ship existed in the late 1700s when the constitution was being drafted,

    They are sort of like the flat earth society but are very specific in their delusion.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    If anything, Paul should be more appreciative of Obama doing this when he doesn't really have to. It's like asking a girl's old man for her hand in marriage. It's utterly useless, but a nice gesture. Plus, if you get the blessing, then the dad's on the hook to pay for the whole thing.

  • Duke||

    Yeehaw -- another “no boots on the ground” war started by the Democrats in the name of humanity. This is why I drink...LSD-laced marijuana juice.

  • CatoTheElder||

    Is "no boots on the ground" going to be the "shovel ready jobs" of 2013?

  • Gorilla tactics||

    +1

  • Len Bias||

    "Rand Paul Was Almost Proud of President Obama Coming to Congress on Syria, Until He Heard He Didn’t Think He Needed It"

    I was also proud of Obama for this. Then, I remembered that he's full of shit in everything he does and says. Maybe Rand should remember this, too.

  • Duke||

    On another thread a few days ago, Tony criticized someone for not praising Obama for doing the right thing by going to Congress.

    If I had responded, I would have said something like this: If a stranger comes into my house and takes a huge dump on my living room floor, steals money from my wallet and throws my guns in the trash, but washes my dishes before he leaves, am I supposed to praise him?

  • Raven Nation||

    Anyone know anything about this. Sounds conspiracy oriented but...

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/d.....ck/5347542

  • JeremyR||

    I think the most obvious answer is that some Syrian commander did it on his own initiative.

  • Jim in Denver||

    What about the reports that the rebels fumbled a chemical weapon and gassed themselves?

    It's not like they're highly trained...

  • CatoTheElder||

    about the author:

    Yossef Bodansky (born in Israel) is an Israeli-American political scientist who served as Director of the Congressional Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare of the US House of Representatives from 1988 to 2004. He is also Director of Research of the International Strategic Studies Association and has been a visiting scholar at Johns Hopkins University's Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). In the 1980s, he served as a senior consultant for the Department of Defense and the Department of State.

    IOW, he's not some random internet goofball spouting of on infowars.

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    So....what'd I miss today?

  • SugarFree||

    Warty raped a planet to death and a lot of Star Trek blather.

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    Oh, so just like every day then. Okay.

  • ||

    Well, not quite. Normally Warty eats whatever he rapes to death, but today he said he wasn't that hungry. I think he might have a cold or something.

  • ||

    Bah, do I have to go back and skim PM Links to get my self-destructive behavior on?

  • ||

    You probably should. Don't miss the part where I call NutraSweet and ProL retarded.

  • Archduke Trousersenthusiast||

    be more specific

  • GroundTruth||

    The only good thing about Kerry being secretary of state is that he's not one of my senators any more.

  • Rock Action||

    Are you a Boston hardcore fan? Because GroundTruth would make an excellent name for an SXE acolyte.

  • seguin||

    lol, Fugazi Ian McKaye Kaye won't like THAT

    livingstraightedgeisntasfun.com

  • Hyperion||

    So what you are saying is that there is nothing good about it.

    Before, his votes were fucking up everyones lives on a national scale. And now his actions are fucking up everyones lives on a global scale.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Remember that time Kerry threw his medals over the fence at Congress because he wanted to "make this country wake up once and for all"?

    I think I liked that Kerry better.

  • PapayaSF||

    May I dislike them both?

  • John C. Randolph||

    You didn't buy that act, did you? He was just doing that for the chicks.

    -jcr

  • ||

    And yet the only one it worked on has the face of a bulldog.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    A friend actually made an argument I found to be somewhat clever today. He knows I am a minarchist libertarian. His argument went like this: 'You guys think it is OK to tax people to have a police force which is authorized to use force against people who engage in horrible acts of aggression against other persons and their property, so why the opposition to using a tax funded military to do that on the international scene when some identifiable actor engages in a horrible act of aggression?'

    My response had to do with the tendency of libertarians to be skeptical that government action will actually accomplish its goals, that it often makes things worse, and that this is especially likely internationally when dealing with foreign cultures and conflicts.

    His response was 'well, then it is not really libertarian grounds so much as a general matter of thinking this will not help/make matters worse, more an empirical question than a philosophical one.'

    I told him I had to think about my answer, and it occurred to me to solicit ones from people here.

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    so why the opposition to using a tax funded military to do that on the international scene when some identifiable actor engages in a horrible act of aggression?'

    When did the people of Syria consent to US military becoming their police force?

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    When do common criminals in the US consent to our police force as theirs?

  • Ken Shultz||

    They consent when they purposefully violate someone else's rights. If there is any legitimate function of government, it's to protect our rights.

    The government protects our rights from criminals who willfully violate them with the police and courts. The government protects our rights by enforcing contracts that people willingly sign with civil courts. The government protects our rights from foreign threats with a military...

    How does what Barack Obama is aiming to do in Syria protect our rights?

    Hell, even when Bush touted his foolish plan in Iraq, his plan was couched in terms that it was in the best interests of American security to live in a world where Democracy would stabilize things, that the Iraqis were state sponsors of terror, made anthrax, etc., etc.

    Obama isn't even trying to say this is in the best interest of the American people. Why should we take on such awesome risks without even a pitch about the tangible benefits?

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    -How does what Barack Obama is aiming to do in Syria protect our rights?

    I think it was his idea that they protected the rights of the Syrians. If it clarifies, imagine, say, Poland when Germany invaded. He would say that just as the police you pay to support should step in to protect from aggression your neighbor (who may not even pay taxes), the soldier you pay to support should step in to protect from aggression people who happen to live over a 'line on the map.'

    As to Obama's pitch, the man is a competent politician, not President. He is not even aiming for the second. I imagine the way he has handled this reflects one of those two facts (he is either doing this purposefully for some political goal, or he is handling this poorly because it has no political valence to him).

  • Jim in Denver||

    Nothing says "humanitarian concern" quite like a punitive missile strike...

  • widget||

    It's specifically about gas as a weapon. If Syria want to experience World War I, I'll side with the Prime Directive.

  • ||

    "When do common criminals in the US consent to our police force as theirs?"

    It is not the criminal's consent that is needed, but the taxpaying, law abiding who asked for and paid for that police force. The bad actors do not enter into it.

  • Irish||

    In this case I think it is an empirical question. If this were like the Holocaust and Assad were flat out gassing people in camps who were not fighting back, I would probably be in favor of intervention. It's not though. It's a situation in which the rebels have lit children on fire and eaten their opponents' hearts. I don't think that helping either side in this conflict is something we should be doing because both sides are horrible.

    There's no reason why you can't sometimes rely on philosophical arguments and sometimes on empirical ones. It's a false dichotomy to argue otherwise.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    He actually addressed this. He said the use of chemical weapons is especially egregious, that the international norm against such use has held pretty good so far, but would likely need action to further its deterrence.

    Of course, I guess as an empirical matter one could question whether chemical weapons are especially egregious. When I did he pointed out that they tend to kill more indiscriminately than more conventional weapons, and that, again, the norm against them has held rather well.

  • db||

    Beat cops from Atlanta don't go running up to Chicago to stanch the blood flowing from that city. If he wants to use the police/taxpayer analogy on a global scale, ask him why it doesn't work on a sub-national scale.

    Ask him why it is our responsibility and not that of the neighborhood cops (Iran, Turkey, Iraq, et al).

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    If Atlanta were experiencing out of control riots I would hope police from other districts would come and help out.

    I like your second point better. I heard on the radio that Turkey was urging our politicians to support a strike, and you make an excellent point, why don't they make a strike?

  • Irish||

    For one thing, the Syrians do not pay for our military. If you live in America, any money you make will go to the upkeep of police forces in your area. The Syrians don't pay for our military and Syrian lives are not put at risk when our military is deployed. For those reasons, the cop analogy fails pretty spectacularly.

  • Lady Bertrum||

    There's the democratic aspect to it as well. Law enforcement is typically accountable to democratically elected representatives. Mayors hire police chiefs. Sheriffs are frequently elected directly. Syrians don't vote in local elections.

  • db||

    To the first response, while sometimes police are sent from one state to another, seldom is it done without compensation.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    If Atlanta were experiencing out of control riots I would hope police from other districts would come and help out.

    If Atlanta were experiencing out-of-control riots, it would likely be the National Guard, not the local cops, dealing with the mess.

  • Irish||

    He actually addressed this. He said the use of chemical weapons is especially egregious, that the international norm against such use has held pretty good so far, but would likely need action to further its deterrence.

    It's especially egregious compared to lighting entire families ablaze and watching them burn? It's especially egregious compared to the decapitation of a bound captive? All of these things are illegal per international law. They are all war crimes. There is no 'especially egregious' when it comes to war crimes, and your friend's contention to the contrary shows that he doesn't seem to know much about international law.

    For example, according to the U.S. war crimes act cruel and inhuman treatment, rape, and mutilation or maiming are all listed as equal to the use of biological compounds. Per our own laws we don't see chemical weapons as any more egregious than mutilation or rape, both of which have been committed by the rebels.

  • Alien Invader||

    If this were like the Holocaust....I would probably be in favor of intervention.

    Why? It's still not our problem, which is the most common argument I hear around here against bombing Syria. And btw it's an argument I agree with.

    Sounds to me like BCE's got a genuine philosophical problem for us here.

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    Why? It's still not our problem, which is the most common argument I hear around here against bombing Syria. And btw it's an argument I agree with.

    If you see a man beating his wife, do you have to intervene? I don't think you have a moral obligation to act unless you've contributed to the problem, but at the same time it would not be immoral to use force to get the guy to stop beating his wife since the man is violating someone else's rights.

    It is in the interest of a peaceful and orderly society to ensure that rights are respected. Not in every case, but in exceptional cases.

  • Irish||

    If you see a man beating his wife and don't intervene then you are a miserable and cowardly piece of shit.

    I don't think you should have a legal mandate to intervene, but legality and morality are not the same.

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    If you see a man beating his wife and don't intervene then you are a miserable and cowardly piece of shit.

    I think we are trying to decide when coercion is acceptable. Should you be arrested and thrown in jail if you fail to act? I say no.

    So a libertarian society is one where there are no legal penalties for cowardice or failure to act in the name of decency. We have to be okay with that.

  • PapayaSF||

    If you see a man beating his wife and don't intervene then you are a miserable and cowardly piece of shit.

    What if it happens on the other side of the world, and you only saw it on television? Are you a coward if you don't buy a plane ticket to go stop it?

  • A Secret Band of Robbers||

    Obviously, you'd be too late to stop it. You'd have to go beat him into a coma, get him fired and get a restraining order against him, then hook his wife up with an abusive meth addict, just to show the world that you weren't going to put up with that kind of thing in the future.

  • Simon9_1956||

    Which reminds me of a story my dad told me. Many years ago, one night in NYC he came upon a man rather savagely smacking a woman around. My dad immediately stepped in, punched the guy to stop the attack and turned to the bleeding woman to see if he could help her.

    Whereupon she started screaming at my father and kicking at him, telling him to mind his own business and "leave my husband alone, you sonofabitch!".

    "All yours, lady," he said. And he got the hell out of there.

    I think there's a moral in there somewhere.

  • Virginian||

    What Simon said.

    I'm a pretty big advocate of citizen's arrests, an active militia, "the public are the police" etc. and I would never ever advocate getting involved in a domestic dispute. Couples interact in very odd ways sometimes. It's not like a purse snatching or a break in. Getting involved in a domestic dispute is a bad idea.

  • John C. Randolph||

    If I see a man beating his wife, I am justified in using force to make him stop. I am NOT justified in forcing anyone else to help me do so.

    -jcr

  • Numeromancer||

    What if he's trying to beat her off because she is trying to claw out his eyes?

  • R C Dean||

    In this case, its more like two men having a brawl, they pull knives, and then one pulls a gun. Lets not forget, this was an escalation (arguably) in a civil war.

    So no, I see no obligation to intervene.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Even I break down at that point.

    In terms of the question of intervening in Rwanda, the thing that bothers me is that we probably didn't have to actually do anything to save the lives of millions of people (especially if you throw in the subsequent carnage in Congo)...

    We might have saved them if Clinton had been even willing to THREATEN the use of force. ...although I'm a little hesitant to harp on that because once you make a threat like that--as Barack Obama is finding out--somebody may call your bluff.

    In the case of Rwanda, though, we could have threatened by way of the UN. Hell, working with the UN as our cover is one of only two things the UN is good for--and Clinton didn't even want to do that. That totally sucked. Clinton might have gotten the support of Congress for a UN operation, too.

  • LynchPin1477||

    One of the big questions for me in these cases is whether or not defenseless people are systematically being targeted. I don't know much about what happened in Rwanda --- I was still sort of young at the time. But in Syria it seems like you've got a flat out free for all of a civil war. Civilians have undoubtedly been caught in the crossfire, but are they being systematically targeted en masse, the current incident aside?

  • PapayaSF||

    As I remember Rwanda was even more mixed up and tangled than Syria. It was many different gangs of people roaming around and hacking people up with machetes.

  • John C. Randolph||

    Rwanda was actually fairly straightforward as third-world shitholes go. There were two main ethnic groups involved. The less-numerous one had been used by the european colonists to put down the other, and after independence, the bigger tribe decided to try to wipe out the smaller one.

    -jcr

  • ||

    There is no philosophical problem. If some Americans think that the Syrians need help, they are perfectly able to go and do something about it. On their own or with like-minded associates, spending their own money.

    The entire dilemma posed by BCE's friend is false. It's an argument about when some politicians decide to use our money to send troops in our name to do things we may not want done. Collectivizing anything, whether it is national defense, government, whatever, will always run into this problem.

    I see many people here, in discussing this, using terms like "we" and "us". Except it isn't. It's Obama and Kerry and Congress. And as has been clearly shown, the will of the (super) majority of people in this country does not matter to them. So there is no "we", there is only "them".

  • A Secret Band of Robbers||

    The rational anarchism argument? Nice. I knew there was a reason I signed your parole papers.

    There are practical limits to how much action individuals can take without their government's go-ahead, especially in military terms. If a private army had wanted to invade Germany in 1941, you can bet FDR would have stopped them for diplomatic reasons.

  • ||

    Which would be an action taken by FDR, and not "us".

    But my main point was that there isn't a philosophical issue here. It doesn't matter one whit what you philosophically think about when to send in the troops, because you do not make that decision. You don't actually need to have a philosophical explanation for it, because you will never be in a position to have to act on that philosophy. And if you ever do, well, cross that bridge when you come to it. It's like being asked to explain your philosophy on what to do if you are cornered by an aggressive unicorn. You could come up with something, but seeing as it's never going to happen, why bother and who cares?

    What BCE's friend was doing was just distracting him by going on the offensive, which is a very common TEAM BLUE tactic. See, his friend is the one that wants to invade and supports intervention, so why is BCE suddenly having to answer questions about what libertarians--who have almost zero political power and certainly will have no influence on the Syria decision--think about it? Because BCE's friend wanted to remove the scrutiny from his philosophy (because it is full of holes) and get BCE on the defensive.

  • Ken Shultz||

    "Why the opposition to using a tax funded military to do that on the international scene when some identifiable actor engages in a horrible act of aggression?"

    There's nothing fundamentally wrong with libertarians opposing a perfectly constitutional action by the president on the basis that it isn't really in the interests of the American people.

    The question of whether what the president is doing is legal is one question--and it's probably the least interesting question this time.

    The important question is how missile strikes against Syria are in the American people's best interests. What are the benefits to the American people? What are the risks?

    If the risk is of getting dragged into a direct conflict with Hezbollah and Syria--should Syria use chemical weapons again just to defy the United States? then you have to mark that against whatever benefit you see--for the American people--in dropping some missiles on Syria.

    What interests does Obama doing this further for America?

    I actually supported arming the rebels (should it be done constitutionally) as being in the long term best interests of American security. But I oppose what Obama's doing directly because it isn't in America's best interests. ...and that's the crux of it for me.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    -The important question is how missile strikes against Syria are in the American people's best interests.

    It seems like an odd question to be dispositive for us though. When it comes to immigration, or trade, for example we do not usually condition rights or decide such matters on nationality.

  • Irish||

    I think national defense is clearly something that exists to protect the American people against foreign threats to their rights. In the long run, immigration and trade are good for the country and the American people. Both of those things make us a richer and more prosperous nation in the long term. There may be short term negative outcomes, but I think that free trade unquestionably is in the best interest of Americans in the long term.

    I think foreign policy generally doesn't fit cleanly into any domestic political philosophy. Foreign policy is inherently anarchic since there really is no force powerful enough to keep every country in line. If America tried, we would bankrupt ourselves. It doesn't fit cleanly into libertarian political philosophy because it doesn't fit cleanly into any political philosophy.

  • db||

    It can be a part of a strategy of national defense to not go needlessly pissing people off around the world.

  • Ken Shultz||

    "It seems like an odd question to be dispositive for us though. When it comes to immigration, or trade, for example we do not usually condition rights or decide such matters on nationality."

    We certainly do talk about immigration and trade in terms of what's best for the American people.

    I support the free flow of people across our borders (so long as they aren't enemies, and don't have a communicable disease) becasue that free flow is in the best interests of the American people. Same thing with free trade...

    When the unions say immigration and free trade are bad for the American economy, they're dead wrong.

  • ||

    "When the unions say immigration and free trade are bad for the American economy, they're dead wrong."

    I am not sure that 'wrong' is the right word to use. They, the unions, dont mean what you think they mean.

  • Ken Shultz||

    "It seems like an odd question to be dispositive for us though. When it comes to immigration, or trade, for example we do not usually condition rights or decide such matters on nationality."

    Also, have you considered the downside of this adventure?

    Hezbollah hasn't attacked American targets specifically since elements of what coalesced into Hezbollah attacked our Marines in 1982. Syria is lousy with Hezbollah right now, and if our missile hit them, how do you expect Hezbollah to respond to such an attack?

    If Syria--in defiance of our strikes--simply uses chemical weapons again and again and again and flaunts it on TV, then how does Obama plant to respond to that? He's not saying he's going to stand down in that situation, is he? No! He'll escalate, I'm sure.

    So, there's significant risk in the U.S. attack Syria directly--that doesn't really exist when we're fighting a proxy war through the rebels. So, those are just some of the risks to the American people and American security, and they seem quite ominous!

    What are the benefits again?

  • R C Dean||

    Yeah, in no sense is this a defense of the US.

  • LynchPin1477||

    I agree. One way we could actually help Syrians affected by the conflict is to allow them to immigrate to the U.S. as refugees (ones that are interested in living in a peaceful, rights-respecting democracy, that is --- anyone know of such a place?).

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Have you passed the LP Purity Test?

    I scored 94/100 and the Peanut Gallery says that is not good enough.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    I try to use the NAP to guide my ethical and political positions.

    But that is my point here. The NAP would allow me to support a tax funded policeman using force to stop or deter a thug from murdering a third party within my country. I am not sure why it would not stop me from supporting a tax funded soldier from doing the same for a third party that happened to be outside my country (again, with the strong caveat that the second situation will much more often than not involve tricky cultures and conflicts where the intervention may do more harm than good, I am talking here about philosophically only).

  • db||

    Interestingly enough, police hardly ever actually "stop or deter ... thug[s] from murdering a third party.." In fact, it is established case law that police have no duty or obligation to protect citizens from harm.

    They are there only to make a show of force or to clean up the mess after the fact.

  • A Secret Band of Robbers||

    Not all interventions by police officers are advisable or efficient, even if they are morally justifiable. There may be justifiable offensive uses of military force, but the burden of proof is on anyone who would advocate avoidable use of force.

    In the case of the holocaust, we were already at war with the Nazis. The military could pursue humanitarian goals within the scope of the war, so long as they do not threaten the safety of the US. It was absolutely, 100% morally justifiable to destroy the Nazi regime over the holocaust. However, no military action is cheap, and anyone who tells you otherwise is selling something. It would have been difficult or impossible for us to help the Jews if we did not already have a declaration of war against Germany.

  • Emmerson Biggins||

    NAP doesn't allow taxes. That is your problem. The rest of your manuveuring is just a well intentioned attempt to avoid that elephant in the room.

  • ||

    I think that by accepting minarchism you have accepted the state's monopoly of force over a designated area. In that case, the inside/outside the country distinction is relevant. A minarchist state is only responsible for the people within its borders because that's the only place it has the right to utilize force (except in imminent danger).

    The example of the additional police forces coming in to quell riots isn't applicable here because they would have been invited in by the state agents.

    Of course, minarchism wouldn't prohibit one from raising a private army and going off to help a humanitarian cause. Just not with my money.

  • Jim in Denver||

    jurisdiction...

  • Hyperion||

    The only thing you have ever scored a 94 on, is sucking Obamas dick. You may have gotten a 100 on that, but on everything else, you're a complete loser.

  • seguin||

    And we put that up on the fridge right next to your certification from the American Society of Douchebags. We're all so very proud.

  • ||

    I have accepted that you are a libertarian.

    Now will accept that you are also batshit insane?

  • Numeromancer||

    Shorter PB: “Look at my penis!”

  • db||

    While I agree that minarchism has its problems, people like your friend are a little too clever for their own good. They're happy to ask you to slide just a little down that slippery slope, while pretending it doesn't exist when you ask them to consider what's just downhill of their own position on it.

    Ask him if he thinks we should charge Syrians for the service...until they are "American Taxpayers," they don't get served.

  • ||

    The simplest and most obvious first point to come to mind is that in his first example the people enjoying the protection of the police are the ones paying for those police, and the ones who hired them. In that example the police are acting in accordance with the wishes of those they protect ( In theory anyway, stop laughing ).

    In the second case, the 'cops' are making a decision about what has to be done on behalf of someone else, and using someone else's money to do it. They dont have the consent of the people who paid the taxes. In a worse case scenario, should this escalate to U.S. troops in Syria, spilling american blood.

    All that philosophizing aside, going into Syria is a profoundly stupid move.

  • LynchPin1477||

    I agree with others that it is, at least in part, an empirical argument. There are conditions under which I would support U.S. intervention in a foreign conflict, even when there is no direct U.S. interest. But some of the things I would look for when making that judgement are: Is the reason for getting involved a good one? Are we likely to actually accomplish our goals? If so, at what cost? Is there a side actually worth supporting? Do we have good contingency plans if things don't go according to plan? But Iraq, Afghanistan, and the past 60 years of U.S. military intervention make it a pretty damn tough sell. The situation in Syria doesn't make the cut.

    As for the comparison with police action, one would hope that would result in a lot less collateral damage. If one innocent person was hurt for every two criminals (some sources claim this is the civilian causality ratio in Iraq by coalition forces) then I'd argue against that type of police action, too.

  • LynchPin1477||

    Actually, thanking about this more, I think there probably is a strong philosophical argument to be made. The fallacy your friend seems to have made is assuming a priori that police action and military action with nominally humanitarian goals are equivalent. That is sort of like assuming equivalence between eating lettuce and eating people for sustenance.

    At least in theory, the police have to first develop individualized suspicion, then obtain warrants to gather more evidence, then try to apprehend the accused peacefully, then present their case in a fair trial, then abide by a jury decision. They can't act as judge and executioner except in the face of extreme and imminent threats, and even then they have to target the actual perpetrators. Without the foundational principles of "the loot, the warrant, the crook", plus fair trials, I don't think you could rightly call it "police action".

    In Syria, you have one or two countries claiming the right to enforce international laws that the international community doesn't want to enforce. A small group of people have made their own judgements based on partly secret evidence, and they aren't talking about attacking the actual individuals who carried out the attack, or even their superiors that ordered it. And the collateral damage may be significant. The comparison itself is flawed. And all the empirical arguments still stand.

  • ||

    This, I think, is an excellent point.

  • Firework Surprise||

    This is the one.

  • Emmerson Biggins||

    So you are almost ready to take the plunge and declare yourself an ancap?

  • ||

    Police busting violent criminals has a proven track record of actually working.

    Randomly bombing one side of a civil war that is raging in the middle east has a very different track record.

    A minarchist libertarian would tend to tolerate government force that actually works and arguably necessary for civil society to function..a better way to keep the roads clear of highway men has yet to be found..the use of indiscriminate force in some distant land without even a goal that can be judged would tend not to be tolerated.

    With police force we know it works and we do not have a better solution to the problem of highway men.

    The other does not work and there may be no solution to the people killing people during civil wars in far off lands.

  • Bill Dalasio||

    Except I can think of few, if any, libertarians who see government as a "universalist" institution. That is to say, governments are supposed to exist on behalf of, and at the consent of, the governed. As such, it's the responsibility of the government to authorize force against those engaged in horrible acts of aggression against their citizens, not for all mankind. I think most libertarians would be appalled at the prospect of the State of New York arresting someone in a casino in Las Vegas for engaging in gambling (or even arresting someone for an actual crime, say a murder that took place in Arkansas). Essentially, the same applies here. The U.S. government doesn't exist on behalf of Syrians. It is an institution that exists (or at least is supposed to exist) on behalf of the American people.

  • Jim in Denver||

    ding ding!

  • Mickey Rat||

    So Kerry thinks that the only thing that counts as war is putting American troops in harm's way? It seems tome that the only thing Kerry objected to about war was the government putting his ass in harm's way.

    How many precepts of just war theory does this action intend to violate?
    I count at least three:

    Competent Authority - Obama intends to bypass the duly constituted authority if they don't give him the authorization he wants.
    Probability of Success - By limiting the nature of the attacks makes it likely the endeavor is futile.
    Last Resort - It seems to be the first resort.

  • Rich||

    McCain plays poker on his iPhone during today's Senate hearing
    and tweets, when caught: Scandal! Caught playing iPhone game at 3+ hour Senate hearing - worst of all I lost!

    Oh, that zany John!

  • LynchPin1477||

    Why couldn't it have been Angry Birds?

  • Rich||

    Or sexting -- that *might* have derailed our Syria adventure.

  • Rich||

    Chill, Man. I merely suggested he might have been *viewing* some.

  • Sevo||

    "I’ll have you know I graduated top of my class in the Navy Seals,"

    So you're well qualified to shoot someone who is asleep?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    So what's the over/under that this post was actually a drunk and senile John McCain responding to Rich via his smartphone?

  • trshmnstr||

    I think it's Bruce Willis. Bruce, he's talking about John McCain, not John McClane!

  • Hyperion||

    Did you suck the biggest cock in your class? I bet you did, we are all impressed with your cock slurping skill.

  • Irish||

    Just so everyone knows, this is a copy of a meme that's been posted all over the internet. It's not a real person.

  • A Secret Band of Robbers||

    QUIET YOU

  • Mickey Rat||

    "I am trained in gorilla warfare..."

    Do you know Grodd personally?

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    +1 Flash

  • seguin||

    +1 AAAAAAAA-AAAAAAHHH!

  • DWC||

    There was a time when I thought this was satire.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hkgAsCyY4JY

  • Heroic Mulatto||

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    Senate Foreign Relations Committee's compromise bill for the authorization for the use of force against Syria bars US ground troops and sets 60 day deadline.

    Menendez and Corker both support Obama’s call for “limited, proportional” attacks on the Assad regime over its alleged use of chemical weapons against Syrian civilians.
    Over the last two days, Corker had been insisting on a 30-day deadline for Obama to order any military action against Syria, but Democrats objected to that requirement.
    The Tennessee Republican had also sought a flat-out prohibition on the insertion of any American ground forces into Syria.
    But Democrats insisted that Obama should be allowed to do so under limited circumstances, such as special forces operations or to secure stocks of chemical weapons.

    So in other words, no boots on the ground for the shock and awe phase. Of course if Syria attempts to strike back at the US, that all will change.

  • Hyperion||

    So, IOW, they just want to make sure there are more terrorist attacks on US soil to distract attention from their corruption, they don't actually think they can make a difference in Syria.

    Got it.

  • Sevo||

    "So in other words, no boots on the ground for the shock and awe phase. Of course if Syria attempts to strike back at the US, that all will change."

    Pretty sure the 'calculus' (as it's called; it's 3rd grade arithmetic) has to do with the number of days to 11/5/13.
    Looks close enough to 60 days.

  • Archduke Trousersenthusiast||

    Oh Lardo, drunk already?

  • PapayaSF||

    Hey, he's probably in India getting one rupee for every post. He needs his comforts.

  • Warrren||

    Excuse me while I rupee one out.

  • Warrren||

    JACK FRAPP SAMMY SO SO!

  • Hyperion||

    Look, why can't we have another fun war when 99% of Americans approve it!

  • Hyperion||

    Let's have a vote on who sucks the biggest war boner slurpy cock, McCain, Boehner, or Pelosi?

  • Hyperion||

    Kerry Horse Face next speech:

    I'm Mister White Christmas
    I'm Mister Snow
    I'm Mister Icicle
    I'm Mister Ten Below
    Friends call me Snow Miser,
    What ever I touch
    Turns to snow in my clutch
    I'm too much!
    He's Mister White Christmas
    He's Mister Snow
    He's Mister Icicle
    He's Mister Ten Below
    Friends call me Snow Miser,
    What ever I touch
    Turns to snow in my clutch
    He's too much!
    I never want to know a day
    That's over forty degrees
    I'd rather have it thirty,
    Twenty, then Five, then let it freeze!
    (brrrrrrrrrrr!)
    He's Mister White Christmas
    He's Mister Snow
    He's Mister Icicle
    He's Mister Ten Below
    Friends call me Snow Miser,
    What ever I touch
    Turns to snow in my clutch,
    Too much.
    Too Much!

  • Stevie OneLeg||

    Goddam it! You just ruined that song forever in my mind, so now I'm gonna send that crazy-ass Navy Seal after you.

  • PapayaSF||

  • Hyperion||

    McCain always looks like he has his jowels crammed full of cock.

  • William of Purple||

    doesn't look like the cock is attached to anyone tho.
    How does that work!

  • Hyperion||

    It's attached to anyone who is currently in power of the biggest war boner.

  • William of Purple||

    I don't get it.
    If it's metaphorical, why would it show up in a picture?

  • Jim in Denver||

    Dildos.

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    She's cute though.

  • William of Purple||

    Oh no

    Jeff Daniels ‏@Jeff_Daniels 2m
    It's official. #Newsroom coming back for a Season 3.
  • Lady Bertrum||

    worse than waterboarding.....

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    Can't wait for a totally topical and hard-hitting episode about this Syria thing.

    I'm sure they'll make POTUS look like the nuanced, reluctant warrior he is while making the real villains Rand Paul and the Tea Party.

  • Warrren||

    I can't even stand the trailers for that show, I don't even want to imagine the horror that is actually watching it and knowing that they get most everything exactly wrong.

  • Irish||

    I saw the first episode and learned in 10 minutes that the U.S. used to wage war on poverty, but now we wage war on the poor.

    With logical, rational analysis like that, how can anyone have a problem with The Newsroom?

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    Sorkin also taught us that Occupy Wall Street is America's version of the Arab Spring.

    Which is now OWS has managed to elect Congressmen and Senators across the country and profoundly influence a major political party.

  • Irish||

    I started laughing when I saw that he compared Occupy to the Arab Spring. Even with months of hindsight, Aaron Sorkin hasn't figured out that the Arab Spring resulted in nothing but the entrenchment of radical Islamic fundamentalists.

    Sorkin is fucking stupid.

  • William of Purple||

    but he likes to hear himself talk.

  • Generic Stranger||

    I thought the one commercial I saw was for the Church of Latter Day Saints. They are awful.

  • William of Purple||

    William Shatner's Shatoetry app is free on android and iphone for a limited time!

  • Warrren||

    Dude is like 103 and still cranking out entertainment.

  • William of Purple||

  • ||

    "Their emphasis on their imminence of catastrophe is designed to preclude rational analysis, so as to railroad through policies before more temperate heads notice their flaws."

    Classic earmark of a con.

    From Confessions of a Confidence Man, Edward H. Smith;

    The Hurrah
    This is like the dénouement in a play and no con scheme is complete without it. It is a sudden crisis or unexpected development by which the sucker is pushed over the last doubt or obstacle and forced to act. Once the hurrah is sprung the victim is clay in the schemer’s hands or there is no game.

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    Huffington Post commentators love them some Rand Paul

    mikesw
    875 Fans
    11 minutes ago (12:15 AM)
    I am a lifelong Democrat. I voted for Obama. I am a proud liberal.

    And I...I can't believe I am going to say this...I agree with Paul on this.

    HUFFPOST SUPER USER
    Shirley Ogburn
    What does extraordinary look like -- OBAMA
    1943 Fans
    5 minutes ago (12:20 AM)
    I doubt you are a lifelong dem and vote for the President if you agree with Paulie.

    You can't agree with the enemy!

    Where the hell was Paul when Bush was declaring his 4 wars -- a war on corporate taxes, terror, Afghanistan and Iraq? Why isn't he holding Bush up as a model for Obama's behavior?

    Congress did a lot of talk-talk about them, but Bush went right ahead as did what he wanted, when he wanted it, and Congress had no say in the matter.

    Rand Paul comes across as a self-centered GopTea fraud who just wants his way -- as many other commenters have pointed out

    Batshit insane. God I hope Rand gets the GOP nomination in 2016.

  • ||

    Was just reading that shit cuz I felt like a punch in the head. My favorite:

    HUFFPOST SUPER USER
    Dave Dave
    Be like water
    4038 Fans
    2 hours ago (10:56 PM)
    If Paul is such a libertarian why does he whine so much when someone acts differently than he does.
  • Irish||

    See, libertarianism means never criticizing anyone you disagree with. It has nothing to do with being opposed to coercion or all that other bullshit.

  • ||

    The next best comments were along the lines of, tHE PRESesdaent iz ComMander in Cheef, READ THE FACKING COnstiTuion.

  • Warrren||

    Funny how that's how it works now.

  • Irish||

    Where the hell was Paul when Bush was declaring his 4 wars -- a war on corporate taxes, terror, Afghanistan and Iraq? Why isn't he holding Bush up as a model for Obama's behavior?

    This is my favorite argument. Thankfully, even most leftists aren't dumb enough to ask this question, but in some of the more ridiculous left-wing fever swamps they still haven't realized that Rand Paul was performing eye exams in Kentucky when all of the Bush bullshit was going on. Surprisingly, the media didn't care much what an eye doctor in the midwest thought about George Bush's warmaking.

  • ||

    Yeah and his father was opposing the wars.

  • Warrren||

    How dare Rand not actually be a senator during the reign of the worestest president ever!

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    Then there's also the willful ignorance of the fact that Bush not only got Congressional approval, but a coalition of 40 nations to sign on to it.

    Regardless of the outcome, he followed the rules.

  • ||

    Bush not only got Congressional approval, but a coalition of 40 nations to sign on to it.

    You guys have it all wrong.

    The same thing happened with Libya. Obama got a smaller coalition then Bush and did not get congressional approval nor UN approval.

    but...France did support it and it does support bombing Syria and guess what the illegal bush war france did not support.

    How define whether a war is legal or not is to see if France does or does not support it.

    Quit messing around with this coalition, congressional approval bullshit....just ask France.

  • William of Purple||

    15 Toys You Threw Away That Are Now Worth A Fortune

  • ||

    I wouldn't call any of those a fortune. Hell almost all of them provided a really shitty return on investment.

  • ||

    Hmmmm I may need to go dig up my old digimons though, I wonder if they are worth as much as the tamagachi.

  • Warrren||

    We have a Pikachu N64 that's worth about $300 but none of the females in the family want to sell it.

    Some of those things look like they would be easy to counterfeit. Are there Antique Roadshow type appraisers for plastic crap?

  • PapayaSF||

    More like "15 Toys That Deluded People Are Trying to Sell for Inflated Prices on eBay."

  • OldMexican||

    Re: Palin's Buttwipe,

    Have you passed the LP Purity Test?

    I scored 94/100 and the Peanut Gallery says that is not good enough.


    You remind me of Mystery Science Theater 3000's satire of the movie I Accuse My Parents where the kid (voiced in a mocking way by Crow Robot) was repeatedly telling everybody how he won "the essay contest." Your repeated attempt at acceptance is just as hillarious.

  • William of Purple||

    Ariel Castro, who kept women captive at his home in Cleveland, Ohio, has been found dead in his cell

  • Calidissident||

    Fucker got off easy

  • Warrren||

    What a let down.

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    Damn, too easy.

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    Salon: There is no moral distinction between pop stars who perform for brutal dictators and celebrities who associate with Wal-Mart

    And yet it’s conveniently ignored when pop stars and actors entertain executives from human-rights violators right here at home. The annual Wal-Mart shareholders’ meeting, attended by both shareholders and employees, features all manner of stars — this June, Jennifer Hudson, Kelly Clarkson, John Legend, Hugh Jackman, Tom Cruise and Elton John all entertained Wal-Mart’s stockholders in Fayetteville, Ark.; past years have seen everyone from Mariah Carey to Miley Cyrus perform. MSNBC reported that none of these entertainers were paid for their time (though hotel and travel expenses were covered and the stars had a chance to promote their projects).
    [...]
    And yet these stars deserve attention paid to them, as much as does West for his Kazakh performance. It’s easy to shame stars for performing for dictators we know from the pages of newspapers or find out about for the first time when Kanye West meets them. It’s more difficult to confront the fact that the right to be treated fairly by one’s employer is routinely violated in the U.S. — and the stars paying tribute to the violators are not the exception but the rule.

  • Warrren||

    They will never, ever be happy. They are pathological and deserve nothing but to be ignored.

  • Irish||

    They will never, ever be happy. They are pathological and deserve nothing but to be ignored contempt.

    Ignore them and they'll convince idiots that they're right. Mockery is a better solution.

  • Warrren||

    I just don't have the alcohol-fueled stamina for that like you do.

  • Calidissident||

    I am speechless. WTF?

  • ||

    I refuse to go look at Salon, but I have a question for those of you who have. Do they have a hammer and sickle logo on their site? Maybe a little 'workers of the world unite' slogan ? I am just curious.

  • widget||

    Maybe a little 'workers of the world unite' slogan ? I am just curious.

    There are only 24 comments to that article at this time. The slogan is "Stop watching football."

  • Matrix||

    is it kind of like The Wookie being proud of America for the first time in her adult life?

  • Stilgar||

    We now have "Classic War" on the shelf next to "New Not War War". Wonder how it will sell.

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