Rand Paul

Can Rand Paul Ever Be Sufficiently Pro-Israel?

Attacking Paul's insufficiently enthusiastic applause for Netanyahu is symbolic of a continuing problem he has with elements of the American Right.

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Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who raised eyebrows early in his Senate career by suggesting that cutting all foreign aid could include aid to Israel, has been trying very hard to repair his bonafides as a Friend of Israel.

He traveled there and said settlements are none of his/our business, he meets with AIPAC, he says an attack on Israel is an attack on the U.S., he tries to make it sort-of clear that he does not believe in containing a nuclear Iran, but nor does he necessarily believe in war with Iran, but mostly seems to believe in the positive foreign policy wisdom of not settling that issue beforehand.

He issued a press release today under the headline "Sen. Rand Paul Stands with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu" reading in its entirety:

"Israel is and has always been America's friend and ally. I was pleased to hear Prime Minister Netanyahu's speech to Congress today, and join him in calling for peace and standing together for our mutual interests. It is important to work together to prevent a nuclear Iran, and the spread of Radical Islam," said Sen. Paul. 

He also sent out another press release later today trying to shore up his rep as someone willing to lean on Iran:

Sen. Rand Paul today signed on as a cosponsor to The Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015, introduced last week by Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.). This bipartisan legislation would mandate that the Obama Administration submit the text of any agreement to Congress, in addition to prohibiting the President from suspending Congressional sanctions for a period of 60 days…..

"As I have said all along, I believe it is in everyone's best interest to find a peaceful way to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. Contingent fully upon the approval from Congress, any deal reached must be strong, verifiable, and ultimately, have real consequences if Iran does not comply. This act will give the administration an incentive to negotiate from a position of strength," Sen. Paul said.

Yet in the recent past he's also been not reflexively pro-more-sanctions on Iran. He knows that Sheldon Adelson, linchpin of Israel-support among the big money American right, is out to get him. And today, as noted at National Review, lots of people are mad at him for not clapping with enough enthusiasm after Netanyahu's "let's you and him fight" speech to Congress today re: Iran.

It's symbolic of a problem that will doubtless hound Rand Paul throughout his run for the GOP presidential nomination: it will be impossible for him to seem sufficiently "pro-Israel" for those funders, pundits, or voters for whom being completely pro-Israel (in the sense of making the foreign policy decisions that the Israeli government wants us to make) is the most important consideration. (How many such voters there are remains to be seen.) Yet he doesn't seem apt to stop trying anytime soon.

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  1. “Can Rand Paul Ever Be Sufficiently Pro-Israel?”

    Can anyone?

    1. I find it interesting how completely unnuanced debate about Israel is in the United States. Either the Israeli government can do no wrong and should be supported no matter what, or they are literally Nazi Germany/Apartheid South Africa. There is far more rigorous debate on these issues within Israel itself that don’t necessarily take such extreme positions.

      1. Those Israelis debating are just self-hating anti-Semites of course.

      2. It seems like every issue gets debated this way after awhile. The nuance gets drowned out and the emotion takes over. Net neutrality, immigration, vaccination, global warming, etc.

        1. Such is the nature of partisanship and TEAMs. Since they are defined by their opposition to one another, for each issue one TEAM will usually care more than the other, and they will stake out their “position” on it. Then the other TEAM, because their existence and identity is based on not being the other TEAM, will then take the opposite position just in reaction. However, being partisan morons, they will automatically begin to push their own positions to the extreme edges of the range because that’s how you get the most “distance” from the other TEAM.

          The result of their primarily oppositional nature then works its magic to eventually make each TEAM’s “approved” stance end up pretty much an extreme.

          It’s because they don’t exist to do anything but oppose each other, so oppose they will, as extreme as they can.

          1. “Such is the nature of partisanship and TEAMs.”

            Yeah, the discussions of global warming and net neutrality around here are just full of non-TEAM like nuance.

            Holy lack of self awareness Batman.

            1. BO SMASH

              1. Didn’t I already say yawn?

            2. Actually, the discussion on global warming here is much more polite and civil, with variance in opinion, than I find on many other sites. Seriously, go to Salon and post something doubting the dogma on AGW and see how quickly you get eaten alive. You can post here without being called a puppet of big corporate or whatever.

          2. Eric Garner’s death was about Al Sharpton vs Rudy Giuliani, right? I mean, I dislike Al Sharpton, so that means I agree with Rudy, and that means that Rudy is right and Eric Garner was wrong. Right?

            1. Exactly. They have to force it into some kind of partisan narrative, because that’s all they know, that’s all they are, and that’s all they want to know. And it’s what makes partisanship so repulsive, because it actually actively abhors subtlety. Looking at an issue in detail and without a partisan lens is work. And it doesn’t just let you know where the other side stands.

              There is also the aspect of it too where partisans use someone’s position on something to instantly decide which TEAM that person is on (whether they are on a TEAM or not). So you could be a libertarian against police violence and you could be talking to a TEAM RED member and they’ll just decide on that one opinion alone that you’re TEAM BLUE. Or you could be talking to a TEAM BLUE member about Net Neutrality and be against it and they’ll decide you must be TEAM RED…based on that one opinion alone.

              Partisans can’t think outside the binary, partly because they don’t want to think outside the binary. It comforts them, it’s easy, it lets them know where everybody stands after two minutes of conversation. Partisans aren’t too bright if you hadn’t noticed.

              1. I agree with this completely.

                TEAM vs Team is hilarious, pathetic, predictable, and most importantly it is so fucking boring.

              2. I agree with what you are saying, Epi, except for the part about partisans not being bright. There are bright and stupid people on all sides of every issue. What makes people into knee-jerk partisans is emotion. It’s comfortable and convenient to have a Team. It saves mental effort, makes people feel good, and often helps in social situations. I know that if I were a Democrat or some variety of leftist, I’d have gotten laid a lot more often in this town. I had one smart and promising lady reject me after several nice dates because I didn’t believe in reimposing the Fairness Doctrine….

                1. I guess I just automatically consider anyone who lets their emotions do their thinking for them as stupid, even if they are “smart” in other areas. To me, tamping down on emotion-based irrationality is the hallmark of someone “smart”; i.e. someone who can metacognize about why they take the positions they do, and not just feel them. And then if they realize that the reason they took a position was emotion and not reason, they can actually rethink the position.

                  If a person can’t do that, to me, they’re stupid. Call it “emotionally stupid” if you will, but I have no respect for people who can’t or won’t think about why they react to things the way they do.

                  1. I think we should call this the Noam Chomsky paradox.

                  2. They are not stupid, they are smart for driving the narrative (gag on that word) to the direction they desire. I would think this is why Sean Hannity is a gazillionaire, and why Al Sharpton is relevant.

                    The stupid people are the ones who impulsively follow their orders. Trayvon is innocent! Zimmerman is guilty! No! Trayon was trash, Zimmerman was a fine fella! EITHER/OR!

                  3. True, there are different kind of “smart,” and emotions can make people stupid. I also sometimes use the wise/unwise distinction, which also don’t quite correlate with smart/stupid.

                2. Sounds to me that you got lucky.

              3. Yay, I’m on your side in this!

              4. But someone decides, or somehow it gets decided, which positions go with which team. This is obviously a very powerful position to be in. Or is it? If all it does is make 50% of people your allies & 50% your opponents, does it really matter how you align them?

        2. That is true to a good extent, but due to the nature of this issue (a foreign state) it’s funny to me how criticism of the Israeli government is in many ways less acceptable in the US than it is in Israel (and the criticism that does happen is often way over-the-top).

          1. I think there are several reasons. One is history: anti-Semitism and the Holocaust make many people wary of criticizing Israel. The other has to do with Israel’s enemies, who are legion and have long rap sheets. Americans who might feel comfortable with nuanced criticism of another US ally (e.g. the UK or Japan) might not want to appear to be siding with the PLO or Hamas or Iran, which seems rational to me.

            1. might not want to appear to be siding with the PLO or Hamas or Iran, which seems rational to me

              It’s a rational response to an irrational premise, perhaps, but one should still be willing to actually challenge the premise from time to time.

            2. Granted, I don’t disagree with that as an explanation. But that logically shouldn’t prevent reasonable criticisms of the Israeli government or the US-Israeli relationship from being tagged as “extreme” or “anti-Semitic.” The fact that Israel is an ally that received US support in many ways opens the door even more to critique IMO and there’s no legitimate reason for debate on Israeli or Israeli-American policy to be less robust in the US than it is in Israel.

              1. I messed up the wording in the second sentence, but I hope you all can get what I meant.

                1. Logically, you are correct, but as we all know, people are rarely merely logical.

          2. It’s comparable to how America is perceived among the people who sympathize with the Western values in authoritarian/totalitarian countries, say Russia. The attacks on the current US administration in those places (whether it’s Bush’s or Obama’s) almost never have any subtlety, almost always conflate real and perceived missteps of the US policy making with the pure evil that is the USA.

            The informed discussion about domestic politics is hardly possible at home, it’s practically impossible in a another country.

    2. I’m surprised that Reason doesn’t have an article against Paul applauding at all, to show him as “insufficiently libertarian”.

  2. “in the sense of making the foreign policy decisions that Israeli government wants us to make”

    It’s amazing how so many of the same people who think (rightly imo) our government can’t get much right think the Israeli government magically can’t get much wrong, and that anyone who doesn’t agree is, of course, anti-Semitic.

    1. It’s amazing how you think you’re smart, but really you’re just a pompous know-it-all.

      1. It doesn’t take a genius to apply the same standards to similar things.

        1. How many times must you be told that it doesn’t matter that there is a grain of truth in what you say, it matters that you present it fairly and respond meaningfully to criticism?

          1. Yeah, the guy who comments ‘It’s amazing how you think you’re smart, but really you’re just a pompous know-it-all’ is lecturing me on ‘it matters that you present it fairly and respond meaningfully to criticism?’

            1. You want me to call you smart when you can’t distinguish between a personal comment and an argument about the issues?

              Jesus you grow tiresome.

              1. I made a comment about the issue at hand, you responded with a personal comment, yes.

                1. BO SMASH

                  1. Yawn.

                2. It’s like you were lobotomized as a child. You can speak more or less coherent English but you don’t understand what’s going on and insist on making that fact abundantly clear.

                  1. You do realize that outside this bubble where a troll is someone you disagree with an indicator of an actual troll is someone who follows someone around making substance-less comments like you’re doing?

                    And you’re the guy lamenting the lack of intelligent, nuanced discussion elsewhere. Wow.

                    1. Where’s the disagreement, Bo?

                      Go on, I’ll wait.

                    2. Wow, way to miss the entire point there.

                      Where did I say there was disagreement in this instance? Go ahead, read it again slowly.

                    3. Ooh, so I can’t call you on your not-so-subtle insinuation that I disagree with you but can’t explain my case?

                      I see how this works.

                      Tell me, do you ever get tired of “winning” every discussion?

                    4. See, what you’re doing there is trolling.
                      Never really reply to what the person you’re trolling says, just spin in a different direction, say nothing you didn’t say in the first comment.

                    5. Well you have yet to respond to it in a meaningful way. I guess I’m just an optimist. I hope that if you lead a moron to enlightenment, he will (eventually) be enlightened. Some other day, perhaps.

                    6. Again, there’s nothing to respond to. Every single comment you’ve made is just a reformulation of your first insult. Classic trolling.

                    7. BUT I LEARNED FROM YOU!

                      Also, Eddie.

                    8. Again, there’s nothing to respond to. Every single comment you’ve made is just a reformulation of your first insult. Classic trolling.

                    9. “Classic trolling.”

                      Clearly written by someone who doesn’t appreciate just how good trolling can be. K is no fool, but here he is posting some pretty tiresome trolling. Anything but classic.

      2. really you’re just a pompous know-it-all.

        No, it’s a condition. By engaging him, you are being cruel- he needs help and therapy, not feeding of the disorder.

        Aspergers can be treated

    2. It’s amazing how so many of the same people who think (rightly imo) our government can’t get much right think the Israeli government magically can’t get much wrong, and that anyone who doesn’t agree is, of course, anti-Semitic.

      If you got through Harvard Law by cheating off of Jews, ran for office financed by Jews, and voted for bills written by Jewish staffers, you’d think their government had to be the bee’s knees too.

  3. Good lord – between this and the “ZOMFG IT’S THE END OF THE WORLD CAUSE N IS ADDRESSING CONGRESS!!!!!!!1111111!!”, the retardation is just too strong.

    It’s all about the signaling.

    Remember – Romniac 2000 wins cause YARD SIGN POLL!!! Same level of “thought” on display here.

    Also, Botard.

    1. Figured out how the Civil Rights Division works yet Almanian?

      1. BO SMASH

        1. Bo thinks the DOJ is the Civil Rights Division and nothing else.

          Isn’t he cute when he’s….no, no, he’s not.

          Botard needs to look up disingenuous, strawman and retard, but it won’t.

          1. When the Civil Rights Division releases it’s investigation you say ‘way to make it about race, stupid Holder.’

            It was priceless.

            1. And what was best about it was that had already been covered thirty minutes earlier on the thread. You were like a child who wanders into a movie…

          2. Look, Alamanian, it’s responding to itself. Like a retarded puppy barking at a mirror. Except, you know, people actually like puppies.

            1. Bottom, right?

  4. The fawning and clapping for Netanyahu made me want to barf today. Treat the guy with respect, but he’s no fucking superhero. It just goes to show that conservatives are just as capable of liberals of head-up-your-ass misplaced PC worship.

    1. Oh, God yes. That flagpin business remains on my mind as a quintessential example of “we’ve got nothing else, let’s argue about useless shit”.

      Of course, there were lots of more legitimate things that should have sank Obama’s candidacy but didn’t. He was a corrupt Chicago pol of the highest order.

      However, plenty of people didn’t care. Ultimately when the voters demonstrate they have no principles, it shouldn’t be surprising that the political class has none either.

      1. I like how you and Almanian are just like mirror images of PB. You can’t just denounce conservatives, you have to append something about a liberal or liberal figure.

        1. Ooh, this is the part where we play the moral equivalency game.

          What fun!

          1. You’re equivalents, but not moral ones.

            1. I will agree with Almanian about one thing, Botard is a good name for you. It accurately reflects your level of understanding on what people are talking about.

              1. You’re FUQ, aren’t you?

                1. You believe whatever helps you sleep at night.

                  1. How pathetic to post under different handles. Tulpa-esque.

                    1. Speaking of Tulpa, you should argue with him more. You know, an actual bona fide Republican, unlike all of the crypto-Reps you think infest this place.

                    2. I argue with anyone I disagree with, I’m not a young girl who worries about who I’m or other people are talking to.

                    3. Also, if I was a sockpuppet, why would I pick a nickname that is quite obviously my first initial and last name? Do sockpuppeteers normally dox themselves with their chosen handles?

                    4. You believe whatever helps you sleep at night.

                    5. Are you familiar with the phrase too clever by half? I think we will coin too clever by a quarter for you. Maybe even an eighth.

                    6. BUT I LEARNED FROM YOU!

                    7. In all seriousness, it would be nice if reason had some kind of sockpuppet detector/indicator. I swear half the people I argue with are just Tulpa socks.

                    8. Well you have yet to respond to it in a meaningful way. I guess I’m just an optimist. I hope that if you lead a moron to enlightenment, he will (eventually) be enlightened. Some other day, perhaps.

                    9. Dude, that wasn’t even directed at you. Jesus Christ, you are king of the retards.

                    10. It’s like you were lobotomized as a child. You can speak more or less coherent English but you don’t understand what’s going on and insist on making that fact abundantly clear.

                    11. Do you really think parroting insults back at people, particularly in instances where it’s a complete non-sequitur, is in any way clever of effective?

                      You’re really hulking out tonight. And by hulking out, I mean going full retard. Never go full retard.

                    12. I think I’ve come to a conclusion re: Bo. PB, Tony, AmSoc, CraiginMass, they’re easy. They’re just standard, run-of-the-mill, poo-flinging trolls. If you ignore them completely you’ll never miss out on anything. But, every now and again, Bo makes some very good points. They’re just buried underneath his desperate urge to be the Joe Scarborough of the thread and remind everyone at all times that whatever they’re criticizing has been done by either Republicans or L(l)ibertarians, depending on where he thinks the person’s sympathies lie. He’s usually wrong (about the sympathies and/or the equivalency) and, worst of all, he fails to make anything like a useful contribution or legitimate argument. It’s just the same old routine, every time, and the same people go after him for it, and then he starts attacking them, and blah blah blah.

                      Reading Bo’s posts is like dumpster diving. Every now and again you’ll find something genuinely valuable, but mostly it’s bags of dog shit, old shrimp, and a couch cushion with vomit on it.

                    13. I think I’ve come to a conclusion re: Bo. PB, Tony, AmSoc, CraiginMass, they’re easy. They’re just standard, run-of-the-mill, poo-flinging trolls.

                      Disagree in Bo’s case. His symptoms are classic and we truly need to help him. Obsessions with Jews, claiming a law degree he doesn’t have, obsessing on college degrees that successful people don’t have… well, it’s a sickness and it’s not deserving of our hate, it’s a sign of a treatable problem. Feeding him and arguing with him will not encourage him to get the help which he so desperately needs.

                    14. Bo Cara Esq.|3.3.15 @ 9:09PM|#
                      “I guess I’m just an optimist.”

                      No, you’re an insufferable asshole who isn’t a tenth as smart as mommy told you.

                    15. Wow, who would’ve saw Sevo missing that that was one of kbolino’s original comments? lol, stay golden there Sevo, ever change.

                    16. For the record kbolino in not me. He does a much better job of slapping the Botard around. I just instantly piss him off.

        2. Stupid neocons.

      2. The thing is. I’m pretty biased towards Israel on a knee jerk level. However while watching the speech, all I could think about was what a bunch of idiots our congress looked like…lapping up the whole charade even while knowing that they were being used as Netanyahu’s props. who’s the fucking client state here???

        1. They wrote our Bible, dude.

          1. The conman Joseph Smith wrote your bible. Don’t forget that.

            1. Bo’s a Mormon? I thought he was in some kind of boring evangelical cult or something.

              1. From someone who seemed to have attended Oral Roberts University that’s funny.

                1. Actually, BYU has a a celibacy code, maybe that’s where Warty went?

                  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C…..Honor_Code

                  1. BOOM

              2. Holy shit, really? That explains so much.

                1. That was in response to Warty. I am contemplating going full P Brooks; why have threading at all if it doesn’t fucking thread after a while?

                  1. Good question. Fuck threading. Trolls had so much less power to disrupt discussions back when all the new posts went on the bottom.

                    1. STEVE SMITH THINK ALL NEW POSTERS GO TO BOTTOM FOR RAPE. LEARN BETTER THAT WAY.

        2. Eh, as much as anything, they are engaging in moral preening in front of their domestic opponents. Also, I’m sure there’s a “holier than thou” aspect of it, too.

          Still, definitely sickening. And yet they are more likely to lose an election because Netanyahu spoke in the first place than they are for being obsequious to him.

    2. Been to boot camp?

      After a couple of months of forcing themselves to suppress undisciplined behavior 18-20 year olds go completely fucking nuts when they are given a little freedom. It is remarkable to watch.

      That is similar to what you are seeing here. After six years of having a man they loath being called Mr. President, fourteen years even for some, they go over the top when they see a guy like Netanyahu. I have heard many of them say as much when they openly wish he were in the white house.

      I admit that I have more respect for the guy by far than our Mr. President, and for lots of good reasons, but I don’t fawn over him. I don’t believe in heroes.

      Hell, the only person I fawn over is my wife, for lots of good reasons.

      1. Do you have any pictures to go with some of those reasons?

        1. Why yes, yes I do.

          *locks drawer on filing cabinet, swallows key*

      2. You make a really good point. The enthusiasm is similar to how many Democrats acted towards Obama at first….He stood (on paper at least) as the antithesis of Bush, and that was enough to have them swooning and tugging at their groins in cathartic ecstasy…kind of like today In the House chamber.

        1. I think they swooned far more over the idea of making history by electing a Black President than about him being the ‘anti-Bush.’

          1. Eric is right. I should have used that as my example.

            The difference is that the swooning and fawning was literal. Really it was on a whole different level. It was a true cult of personality and still is to some degree.

            Yeah, first black president was part of it but the real driver was that they all thought he was the first pinko president.

            1. The pinkos thought he was a pinko. To a large extent he is, but what really got him elected (aside from being a black man without the “negro dialect”) was being an empty suit. He had almost no voting record, and he was incredibly vague even by politician standards. It was easy for people to project their values and policy preferences onto him. That, and the fact that after 8 years of W, Team red decided to run a statist asshole that not even republicans liked.

              1. Some day they will write the book on the brilliant campaign by the Obama people. They created a Rorschach test of a candidate that allowed voters to project all of their hopes and desires onto a blank slate.

                The guy literally says stuff like “In a family you have to stay within your means. So we need to tighten our belt. We need to be more responsible. And we need to make investments in the future.” He’s for cutting spending and increasing spending – without actually saying either. Everyone heard what they wanted to hear.

                1. It was remarkably successful in terms of getting into office, but he’s been a horrendous president by just about anyone’s account, even TEAM BLUE. The only reason he got a second term is modern ultra-partisan stupidity and ROMNIAC’s utter shittiness as a candidate.

                  He won’t have much of a legacy either, though I’d bet millions that the efforts to “rehabilitate” him down the line are epic.

                  1. Despite his obvious personal political leanings, it seems like he has often governed as a Rorschach test as well. Team Blue decided they were finally going to do healthcare because they had both houses and the presidency and Obama got the credit, but from all outward appearances he didn’t seem to have all that much influence on the final product. They seemed to use him more as a salesman to go out and tell the proles that it was a wonderful, magical new law. Much of what he was speechifying about had no relation to the final law, leading me to suspect that he wasn’t really in the loop as it was being crafted.

                    Even in doing bold and decisive things like taking us to war without the approval or even consultation of congress it doesn’t appear that he is the driving force. It seems like events are dragging him around. Well, events plus a bunch of advisors from Wall Street who are pretty adept at getting their Manchurian Candidate to dance to their tune.

                    Even as he continues to talk about our civil rights, he pushes for more expansions of the abuses that started with the USA Patriot Act. Ever the blank slate, an empty canvas waiting for your imagination to populate it with your own ideas.

              2. Adelson’s money will back whoever’s a sure loser. He probably places bets on the election against his anointed candidate.

        2. The enthusiasm is similar to how many Democrats acted towards Obama at first.

          *sings* Binyamin Netanyahu mmm mmm mmm…..

      3. The trick to having “heroes” is picking guys that are either dead or fictional characters. They’re much less likely to disappoint you.

      4. Hell, the only person I fawn over is my wife, for lots of good reasons.

        Protip: don’t let her know how much you fawn over her

      5. I’ve loathed every President since Nixon except Carter, who I thought was only a disappointment. I always think that they can’t get any worse and they always prove me wrong.

  5. No matter what your opinion is of Netanyahu, he apparently made Nancy Pelosi cry.

    I think we can all agree that he deserves applause at least for that.

    1. If she turns orange she can have the gavel back.

  6. There’s still time yet. You don’t have to do this to yourselves, you fools. Spare yourselves the pain.

    1. Thirteen year old girl.

    2. GIRL1!1!1!!1!1!1!

      SQUATZ!!!1!1!1!1!!1!!!!

      I CAN NEITHER CONFIRM NOR DENY VIRGINTY!-!1!1ELEVENTY

      1. DOYERS SMASH

      2. When you and Warty do Donkey Calf Raises, you’re the bottom, right?

  7. Reagan had the same kinds of problems with conservatives on the right.

    There’s no substitute for victory.

    If Rand Paul wins?

    All will be forgiven.

    If he comes in the top 3 in Iowa and wins in New Hampshire?

    There won’t be many other candidates left at that point.

    And Iowa may split the establishment vote three ways, the cultural conservative vote a couple of ways–leaving Rand Paul with libertarianish vote all to himself.

    Say what you gotta say to win the nomination, Rand.

    He can’t win with just the support of libertarians, so he’s gonna have to say what he’s gotta say.

    1. Neocons will push for a libertarian-esque alternative to Paul to stay in the race through New Hampshire to peel votes away (as was done when Huntsman was there two years ago).

  8. Rand Paul just needs to have sex with Netanyahu in a field littered with Palestinian corpses and I think the Republicans will finally decide he’s hardcore enough.

    1. I’m pretty sure Cyotoxic has had this very dream.

      1. Sugarfree gives him a single chapter of such erotica anytime he needs a favor done in Canada.

    2. I think they need to do it in an IDF helicopter to really seal the deal.

    3. They’ve definitely been begging for someone to say something hateful about Muslims.

      …since Obama won’t, you know. That’s one of the reasons they know Obama’s a secret Muslim.

      Maybe Rand could threaten to nuke the Kabbah!

      1. Sharif don’t like it, nuke the kaabah, nuke the kaabah!

    4. But then he loses the anti-gay wing of the party. No way to win I guess?

      1. Making love to Netanyahu doesn’t make you gay since you’re pleasuring a stalwart American ally, you fucking treasonous buffoon.

        1. Sorry, I missed that footnote in Sean Hannity’s Official Guide on how to be a Great American.

          1. I always figured Hannity was illiterate, but I guess he could dictate.

            1. His words are Hannity breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness.

      2. Calidissident|3.3.15 @ 9:12PM|#
        “But then he loses the anti-gay wing of the party. No way to win I guess?”
        How ’bout they both have sex with a couple of comely IDF fems?

  9. Texas Tea Party congressman wants marijuana legalized, but has a very Tea Partyish justification:

    Simpson has long championed top libertarian causes but supports legalizing marijuana because of his devout Christian beliefs. In his words, “God did not make a mistake when he made marijuana that the government needs to fix.”

    Sounds like my kind of guy, even though I’m not entirely sure I follow the logic.

    1. Certainly someone I could work with there.

      1. I’ve had many a stoner tell me that marijuana is inherently good and blessed because the Genesis 1:12, among other verses.

    2. “God did not make a mistake when he made marijuana that the government needs to fix.”

      Huh?

      1. Basically,since God made Marijuana, it is beyond the authority of earthly government. Think of it as a crude natural law argument.

        1. Except this could be applied to virtually everything, so unless he’s some sort of anarchist his logic makes no sense.

          1. Well, more to the point, he seems to be saying that, “if God created it, and found it to be ‘Good’, human government can’t/shouldn’t outright claim it’s ‘Bad'”.

            1. I’m ok with Answer By Accident

        2. This fellow could be the one that finally makes a push to legalize mushrooms as well.

  10. OK, kbolino. You enjoy yourself.

    1. You’re obsessed dude.

    2. He done caught deh Tulp-aids from dat bo

    3. Hardly. That was about as much fun as “arguing” with mtrueman.

      1. I miss HERCULE TRIATHALON SAIVENEN (sp?). THAT guy was [QUALITY].

        Botard makes MNG – whoa argued the same way – seem tolerable, so….

      2. Don’t even fucking joke about that. Mtrueman is the worst. He’s worse than Tony.

        1. You have to keep in mind that M freely admits to lying in order to support an argument.
          So, no, there is no reason to engage that piece of work; which comment is the lie?

        2. Was it just me or did Tony fully out himself as a full-blown pinko today?

          1. You mean, again?

          2. What thread was he in?

            1. The robot one I think. He said we need a full social welfare state.

              I think he has expressed praise for the USSR before, but I am not sure. I get the pinkos mixed up after a while.

      3. I think I’ve learned my lesson. After he just repeated my own posts back to me, I realized that I was dealing with an unteachable child.

  11. We’re all missing the really important issue of the Netanyahu speech – was he mansplaining the Middle East?

    Pelosi’s point ? and I’ve heard this before from Democrats on the Hill ? is that they feel that Netanyahu and his proxy here, Ambassador Ron Dermer, start conversations by presuming their interlocutors know nothing.

    In fairness, when you’re talking about John Boehner and Nancy Pelosi, the assumption that they know nothing is a pretty good one.

    1. I have a professor who is a well-respected consultant who, while mainly focusing on the private sector, has a lot of experience consulting the government at a very high level (he has met and worked with the past 5 presidents) regarding foreign policy mostly, and today in classes we watched and discussed Netanyahu’s speech. I asked him what he thought of Netanyahu’s claim that he wasn’t there for political reasons, even though Israeli elections are 2 weeks out, and his response was basically “Well Boehner invited him, and if you got to know Boehner like I do, you would agree with me that the chances of him knowing when Israeli elections are virtually zero. He probably thinks they have them in November like we do.”

      1. “Well Boehner invited him, and if you got to know Boehner like I do, you would agree with me that the chances of him knowing when Israeli elections are virtually zero. He probably thinks they have them in November like we do.”

        So you CAN tell a book by its cover?

      2. And I’ll add that he’s a fairly conservative Republican generally, so he’s not saying that out of political bias.

  12. I like your work, Brian, and hope that Rand Paul will have much more influence in the US politics. That’s why I’ll give you my pro tip: please don’t even contemplate combining your opinions on conscription, Israel, and Rand Paul in the same piece. The number of people that would draw to the cause of liberty is less than zero.

    1. I would like to apologize for calling you a Soviet apologist, and also for saying you had Stalin’s dick in your mouth.

  13. He traveled there and said settlements are none of his/our business

    This should’ve be enough to appease Team Red. But I wonder if all of Rand’s pandering now will be fruitless after they’ve already made up their minds about his opinion on cutting all foreign aid. Makes me wonder if he’ll backtrack on some things.

    I also don’t agree with sanctions. It has the opposite effect. It hurts ordinary people more so than political leaders. If you believe in liberal ideals then you should open the market for those people you want to influence. From my Persian friend in college to my colleagues at work, and a BBC documentary on the big underground market in Iran (with malls literally under ground), a lot of people there are very receptive to western media. There’s a petition (official MS user survey where people can vote on ideas) by Iranians for Microsoft to open their app store and sell products and services to Iran. But it’s misguided because the petitioners should be targeting the state department/gov.

    1. “This should’ve be enough to appease Team Red.”

      He also sponsored a bill to withhold all US aid to the Palistineans unless they acknowledge Israel’s right to exist.

      But he didn’t clap hard enough, so you know.

  14. Rand will never be favored by the Israel-firsters, and I’m sure he’s smart enough to know that. I think his goal is to be seen as a tolerable alternative after assorted also-rans crash and burn. It’s okay if the non-libertarian republicans see him as distasteful, as long as they don’t outright recoil in horror.

    1. Good point. Primary season is a war of attrition.

  15. I like how Botard decides I’m TEAM RED even though I said nothing about liberals or left wing or Dems or…anything. Just noted that the pants shitting about Paul’s views and the Israeli PM are really just…overwrought.

    KILL that strawman, Botard! KILL that strawman!

    And I’ll agree with kbolino about at least one thing – Botard is an excellent name for it.

    1. And PB just notes that the GOP is as bad as the Dems, you know.

    2. And I’ll agree with kbolino about at least one thing – Botard is an excellent name for it.

      Between this and not insulting Republicans enough, I think I’m on “the list” now.

      1. Wooo hoo!

        I think….

  16. I appreciate that Israel is an alley but it always nauseates me when our presidential candidates inevitably are expected to pledge allegence to Israel during the debates.

    1. “I appreciate that Israel is an alley”

      Israel is neither an alley nor an ally. The only country of the region that can claim that is Turkey, a member of the NATO alliance. Israel is a ‘strategic partner.’ She shares a strategic if not moral equivalence to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Islamic Republics of Pakistan and Afghanistan.

  17. I have to admit this is A-class trolling.

    Well played, Iran. Well played.

    1. That was awfully NUH UH YOU ARE-ish. It almost reminds me of something.

      1. Well, we are talking about a country that recently constructed a model of an American aircraft carrier, blew it to smithereens on national TV, and then strutted around as if they did something.

        It’s as if they’ve confused a game of Warhammer 40K with real life.

        1. How fucking much money did they spend on that model? And how do they think their speedboats are ever going to be allowed within 10 miles of a US carrier?

          1. Well, the speedboats are going 80KPH, so you expect one of the US jets to be able to keep up?!

          2. Iranian Chief of Staff, General Hassan Firouzabadi, in explaining the intended purpose of the military exercises in the Persian Gulf, was quoted as saying “U wot m8? i swer u are one cheeky cunt mate, say it to my face and not online and we’ll see what happens. i swer 2 Muhammad (swt) I’ll hook u in the gabba. u better shut ur mouth or im calling me Basij paramilitary militia rite now preparin for a proper rumble. tha rumble that’ll make ur nan sore jus hearin bout it. yer in proper mess ya nob head.”

            1. Wait, I thought the blokes that sound like that fight for the Salafi ISIS?

        2. It wasn’t a particularly convincing model, either.

          1. Sanctions diminished their Lego budget..

            1. A cartoon would have been more convincing. Is that thing made out of Styrofoam?

              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZrgLFcIMYDk

                1. The link didn’t work. Don’t waste five minutes of your lives on it.

    2. From time to time I forget just how mind-bogglingly incompetent and backward they are. I wonder how much of the worry over them getting nukes is for nothing. The only way they will get one will be if someone makes it for them and gives it to them. Even then I can’t see them using it properly.

      I can see being worried about the Ruskies. They get everything almost right. The Iranians? They get everything completely wrong.

      1. “I can see being worried about the Ruskies. They get everything almost right.”

        I’m not so certain.
        I trust Russian scientists pretty much, but the tech still seems to be run in a slip-shop ‘we pretend to work…’ effort.
        The science behind Chernobyl was solid; the manufacture, operation and service, not so much.

        1. The science behind Chernobyl was solid; the manufacture, operation and service, not so much.

          The RBMK design was/is fucking garbage. That fact that its manufacture, operation, and maintenance was also conducted by Russians certainly didn’t help. I wouldn’t trust that design even it were being operated by vastly better trained Americans.

          Russian “science” is full of abject horseshit. Frankly, I suspect most of what they “get/got right” is either by pure accident or they stole it from Westerners.

  18. Clap harder, Rand Paul, and you can save Tinkerbell…I mean Israel!

  19. This article about Greg Gutfeld leaving Red Eye has an absolutely ludicrous statistic:

    Last month, for instance, “Red Eye” was watched by an average of three hundred and thirty-nine thousand insomniacs, including a hundred and thirty-seven thousand in the key demographic of viewers between twenty-five and fifty-four years old. For a program broadcast at three in the morning, though, that’s an impressive feat: by comparison, Chris Hayes, the 8 P.M. host on MSNBC, attracted only a hundred and eleven thousand viewers in that demographic

    A Fox News show at 3 AM averaged more viewers between 25 and 54 than MSNBC during primetime.

    1. Why would they spell out numbers with 6 digits but not spell out the time of day?

      1. The New Yorker is famous for having weird-ass style rules for their writers.

        Don’t even get me started on their continuing use of diaereses.

        1. Only someone with the morals of a heathen China-man or Hindoo would question the necessity of the diaeresis.

          1. “Only someone with the morals of a heathen China-man or Hindoo would question the necessity of the diaeresis.”

            You’re history’s greatest monster.

              1. How, in the name of God, do you find that stuff?

    2. Hey, I bet they’re not all insomniacs. I’m sure some of them work second shift.

      And this is what happens when infomercials replace reruns of The Outer Limits and The Love Boat late at night.

    3. Well, we are talking about a comparison between Gutfeld and Tingles…

      Really, I bet lots of Red Eye’s views are DVR-based. Not that hard to imagine.

      1. Isn’t Tingles Chris Matthews?

      2. Red Eye has lost some of its oddity and subversion, which makes it less interesting and more like traditional panel shows.

    4. That’s astounding (the ratings), though I actually watched Chris Hayes once and it’s not suprising. It was like watching paint dry.

      At least Madcow can summon up some sjw outrage that is stupid but a little bit entertaining.

      Anyone know who is bankrolling this bunch. Either you don’t need many viewers to stay afloat or someone is ponying up big time.

    5. Not too many outside that demographic stay up drinking until dawn.

  20. Why is a new law needed to get the President to submit an agreement (read “treaty”) to the Senate for approval? Isn’t that in that old paper thingy?

    1. Get with the times, man!

  21. OT: Bust out the white wash

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/…..feafdd1394

    1. They are gonna need a supertanker full of the stuff and firehoses to apply it. I have a couple of skeletons in my closet. Hers is a mass grave.

    2. It is just the right-wing smear machine trying to take her down. They are afraid of a strong woman, it is as simple as that.

    3. Neener, neener. You did it tooo!

    4. Getting the shit back in the horse:
      An interns guide to defusing Clinton scandals and fuck-ups.

      Schoolastic press ? 2015

    5. Links are working. They’re not showing up orange on my screen.

  22. Interesting:

    “A homeless man who was killed by Los Angeles police on Skid Row was living under an assumed name and was wanted for violating probation terms for a bank robbery conviction, French and U.S. officials said Tuesday….

    “Using the name [Charley Saturmin] Robinet, the man was identified as a French national in 2000 when he was convicted of robbing a Wells Fargo branch and pistol-whipping an employee in an effort to pay for acting classes at the Beverly Hills Playhouse….

    “Under the terms of the man’s release, he was required to provide reports to his probation officer at the beginning of each month, Deputy U.S. Marshal Matthew Cordova said. When he failed to do so in November, December and January, a federal warrant was issued Jan. 9.”

    http://www.wral.com/3-officers…..OmrgVLS.99

    1. One of the reasons so few cops get sanctioned for illegal behavior is that their victims are not sympathetic.

      1. In this case, “not sympathetic” might translate to “had a motive to fight the cops.”

        1. As in, “I ain’t going back in, man!”

        2. True. I wasn’t commenting on that particular case as I am not familiar with it.

          I don’t remember all of the numbers and am too lazy to look it up but…..there are a few thousand suits filed against cops for rights violations every year yet the average number that win are less than 20. It might even be less than 10, I can’t remember. The main reason given was unsympathetic complainants. In other words, they deserved it.

          It is a dangerous road we are on.

          1. I am personally familiar with one recent case. I was getting on the elevator in the federal courthouse and a guy got in with me. He looked familiar but I couldn’t remember who he was so I introduced myself.

            He shook my hand and told me his name. Sheriff down in Avoyelles parish.

            “Ah, ok. Nice to meet you Sheriff. What are you doing here?”

            “Lawsuit”

            “Oh? complainant or defendant?” I was joking. I expected him to be there as complainant.

            “Defennnnn Dant” He strung the word out and emphasized the second syllable.

            I shook his hand and wished him luck.

            Later I found out that a couple of his deputies had beaten the shit out of a guy in the jail and he was suing them.

            He was arrested for peeping in windows at night. He tore up the back of the police car on the way to jail and shit himself. When they got him in the booking room he pulled a surprise on them and tore up everything he could get his hands on.

            When the judge saw what a loathsome creep the guy was and what all he had done, he dismissed the case.

  23. I don’t know, but today seemed kinda odd. No barking from the dogs, no smog, and momma cooked a breakfast with no hog.

    1. Good days are like that.

      1. “Good days are like that.”

        Wrong.. read again.

        “..cooked a breakfast with no hog.

        WITH NO HOG

        1. What? Jews and Muslims aren’t allowed to have good days?

          1. Hmmm… No! next question..

          2. NO BECAUSE RAND PAUL SAYS SO

    2. I trust you didn’t have to use your AK, during this good day?

  24. For those who drive and might take routes not numbered as interstates, here’s a time/distance calculator that allows you to drag the route into a new alignment:
    http://distancesonline.com/
    Maybe you want to go to California via Arkansas…

  25. 3-D PRINTED MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS!

    They’re going to be able to do ridiculous things with these instruments. The two-string violin that they have in there looks really cool, but I have no idea what something like that would sound like when played.

    1. They can make string? I have to get one.

  26. Uh, oh! Skwerils at Work!
    Links no highlight, font and size changed; who done what to whom?

    1. I thought it was just my computer. Same here with font and size.

  27. My browser tried a redirect to “ivokokp.priplow.ml”..
    Now, font and highlight are fubar aswell..

    1. Nope.
      Whatever Reason pays for server hosting, I hope it isn’t much.

      1. Seems like they may be switching over to a new design? Either that or it’s defaulting to the mobile version (this design has “tablet” written all over it). Fuckin’ weird.

        1. We’re rolling out changes to the mobile version of the site and a new digital edition of the magazine. Please bear with us for a day or two as problems get cleared up.

          1. It’s the Hit & Run Comment Paragraph Spacing Massacre of 2015.

            You have to add your own HTML line-breaks now.

            Looks like XHTML works, too.

            1. Well, that explains a few things. I thought I was just forgetting to hit enter…

  28. I’ve made $64,000 so far this year working online and I’m a full time student. I’m using an online business opportunity I heard about and I’ve made such great money. It’s really user friendly and I’m just so happy that I found out about it. Heres what I’ve been doing,
    http://www.work-mill.com

  29. I’ve made $64,000 so far this year working online and I’m a full time student. I’m using an online business opportunity I heard about and I’ve made such great money. It’s really user friendly and I’m just so happy that I found out about it. Heres what I’ve been doing,
    http://www.work-mill.com

  30. Add this obstacle to Rand’s extreme social conservatism on abortion and marriage equality … with 48 hours of the liberal and centrist media discovering it. And his bizarre view on the 10th amendment (inherited)

    1. Aw, c’mon, you might disagree with him, but it’s not that extreme.

      Is his 10th amendment view bizarre or is it that you find the 10th amendment bizarre?

  31. I’ve made $64,000 so far this year working online and I’m a full time student. I’m using an online business opportunity I heard about and I’ve made such great money. It’s really user friendly and I’m just so happy that I found out about it. Heres what I’ve been doing,,,,,

    http://www.work-mill.com

  32. I’ve made $64,000 so far this year working online and I’m a full time student. I’m using an online business opportunity I heard about and I’ve made such great money. It’s really user friendly and I’m just so happy that I found out about it. Heres what I’ve been doing,,,,,

    http://www.work-mill.com

  33. Rand Paul is already more enthusiastic than his father ever would be about Netanyahu. Why should he overdo it when Netanyahu has been peddling the same lies for 15 years. How many times has he said in the past that Iran was less than a year away from the bomb? He has been saying this for a decade!!!!! What is Bibi’s definition of a year? Bibi was wrong about the IRaq war.

    Only in DC can people who have been so wrong about the middle east for decades can get away with peddling their “expertise” to pooh pooh skeptics even now. I believe in being proactive in solving issues. But you can be proactive only when you have reliable intelligence and reliable prediction model on what can happen in the near future if you act a certain way. Those predictive models with the middle east have been unreliable in the past. WHen so much cost is involved in going on any course inthe middle east, I have no problem resorting to being in a REACTIVE mode instead of PROACTIVE because the cost of acting a little too late may appear expensive in the short run, but in the long run, it saves money and lives as you avoid a lot of silly misadventures with unintentional blowback.

  34. Stalin had a buzzer installed so when he spoke people knew when to stop clapping.

  35. I find it interesting how completely unnuanced debate about Israel is in the United States. Either the Israeli government can do no wrong and should be supported no matter what, or they are literally Nazi Germany/Apartheid South Africa. There is far more rigorous debate on these issues within Israel itself that don’t necessarily take such extreme positions.
    ???? ?????? ????? ???????
    ???? ?? ?????? ???????
    I find it interesting how completely unnuanced debate about Israel is in the United States. Either the Israeli government can do no wrong and should be supported no matter what, or they are literally Nazi Germany/Apartheid South Africa. There is far more rigorous debate on these issues within Israel itself that don’t necessarily take such extreme positions.

  36. I find it interesting how completely unnuanced debate about Israel is in the United States. Either the Israeli government can do no wrong and should be supported no matter what, or they are literally Nazi Germany/Apartheid South Africa. There is far more rigorous debate on these issues within Israel itself that don’t necessarily take such extreme positions.
    ???? ?????? ????? ???????
    ???? ?? ?????? ???????
    I find it interesting how completely unnuanced debate about Israel is in the United States. Either the Israeli government can do no wrong and should be supported no matter what, or they are literally Nazi Germany/Apartheid South Africa. There is far more rigorous debate on these issues within Israel itself that don’t necessarily take such extreme positions.

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