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RPI: Still Lean and Mean...But Growing!
Readers of the Ron Paul Institute's work over the past year or so will most likely recognize the frequent appearance of Adam Dick on the website. Adam has written more than 200 articles and blog posts for the Institute as a part-time contractor.

30 October 2014read on...

What Putin Said -- RPI's McAdams and Jay Taylor Discuss
RPI director Daniel McAdams is back with Jay Taylor this week to discuss the big issues in the world. The fallout and western reaction to Putin's big speech at the Valdai Club; the western media reaction to the speech; who is telling the truth? Also Turkey's game in Syria, elections in Ukraine, do the foreign policy elites really speak for America, and more...

28 October 2014read on...

Ron Paul on the Selective Service System’s Psychological Manipulation
RPI Chairman and Founder Ron Paul, speaking with Charles Goyette during their most recent weekly podcast, addresses the military draft, which Paul refers to as “slavery,” and the psychological manipulation involved in requiring 18-year-old American men to register in the Selective Service System. The discussion complements Paul’s Sunday column analyzing the anti-liberty nature of conscription as well as other forms of mandatory “national service.”

25 October 2014read on...

John Stossel Demolishes Old Saw about Libertarians as ‘Spoilers’ for Republican Candidates
John Stossel, in a conversation Thursday with fellow Fox Business host Stuart Varney, demolished with three arguments the old saw that Libertarian Party candidates are “spoilers” for Republican candidates.

25 October 2014read on...

Will 'Indispensable' West Consider Putin's Latest Speech?
Russian President Vladimir Putin delivered a forceful speech today at the Valdai Club's annual meeting held in Sochi, Russia. The Russian president criticized the US for destabilizing countries like Ukraine, Libya, and Syria though its practice of "regime change." He also criticized the US government for its sponsorship of extremists in Syria and elsewhere in pursuit of regime change, warning of blowback from such practices.

24 October 2014read on...

Eric Margolis: Formerly ‘Liked Everywhere’ Canada Has Moved ‘Into the Gun Sights’
International affairs writer Eric Margolis, interviewed Wednesday on the Scott Horton Show, commented that he would not be surprised if the killers of Canada soldiers in Ontario and Quebec this week were motivated to react to the Canada government’s adoption of “a very, very hostile policy toward Muslims in general.” Margolis pins the responsibility for the adoption of this policy largely on Stephen Harper, who has been the nation’s prime minister since February of 2006, and some of the groups supporting Harper.

23 October 2014read on...

35,000 People and Counting on New York’s New ‘No Guns List’
The US government has demonstrated with its No Fly and Selectee Lists, in operation for over a decade, how to deny respect for tens of thousands of individuals’ travel and privacy rights without even the slightest nod to due process protections. Over the last 19 months, the New York government has followed a similar course, using a new “No Guns List” to deny respect for tens of thousands of individuals’ right to keep and bear arms.

23 October 2014read on...

Ebola, Putin, German Spooks, NATO, etc. — Daniel McAdams With Jay Taylor
Again RPI's Daniel McAdams looks at the news of the week on the Jay Taylor Show. This week Jay and Daniel look at Rep. Walter Jones and US troops in harm's way in Ebolaland, the new German intelligence claim to know who shot down the Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 over east Ukraine, NATO's claims that Russia is on NATO's doorstep when it was NATO expansion that has moved to Russia's border, ISIS, and more....

22 October 2014read on...

We Tortured Some Folks...And Thinking About Torturing Some More Folks
The New York Times reports that the Obama Administration is considering a return to the Bush-era interpretation of the UN Convention Against Torture, which is that it does not apply to torture conducted outside US borders. This would mean that those conducting what would be considered torture in the US would not be legally liable for such actions in CIA facilities or US military prisons overseas.

20 October 2014read on...

Germany Knows Who Shot Down Flight MH-17?
That is the claim of the head of German intelligence, the BND, writes German newsmagazine Der Spiegel over the weekend. On RT, RPI's Daniel McAdams remains skeptical of these supposed German claims and criticizes the secrecy and lack of transparency in the investigation...

20 October 2014read on...

Peace and Prosperity

Obama's Second Term Foreign Policy: A Full Tank or Running on Empty?


Stephen Walt

At the Ron Paul Institute, our job is to look critically at US foreign policy and point out the disasters of successive interventionist and empire-building administrations. But asked to more clearly define what this Administration is really up to thus far in its second term -- what are its goals, what values does it seek to convey worldwide, what are its motivations -- we often feel at a profound loss.

What does the president want to see happen in Egypt? Syria? What happens next in Afghanistan, Obama's "good war"? Russia re-set?

We non-interventionists are not alone in our confusion. Our cousins the realists are also scratching their heads. Even as they tend to support more government action overseas than we, they would like to at least have some idea what the end-goals might be.

One of the realist school's most consistently cogent personages, Harvard Professor Stephen Walt, joins us in our perplexity. He wonders in his Foreign Policy column today whether the Administration is just plain out of gas:
On Egypt, U.S. policy is neither hard-nosed realist nor a principled defense of democracy. Indeed, I can't quite figure out what the U.S. policy is except that the Egyptian generals are still going to get the customary U.S. baksheesh and the United States will do its best to nudge them into something it can plausibly defend as kinda, sorta democratic. On Syria, I'm glad the United States hasn't gone the Full McCain (defined as a blindfolded dive into a shark-infested pool), but it would be nice if someone explained to the world what U.S. policy is. On Iran, the arrival of a new, more moderate president -- something the administration was positively panting for back in 2009 -- seems to have elicited the most timid of policy responses. Instead of a serious diplomatic initiative, Americans just get to hear more lectures from Prime Minister-Who-Cries-Wolf Netanyahu, who seems to think the United States owes his country another Middle East war. (And while I'm at it, when did CBS News' Bob Schieffer forget how to ask serious questions? If he plans on retiring anytime soon, a second career hosting paid infomercials beckons).

Maybe I'm being too harsh. The transatlantic trade talks seem to have survived Edward Snowden's revelations about National Security Agency spying in Europe, though it will be a long slog before a deal is reached. Despite the sequester, the U.S. military (especially the Special Forces) is busy partnering with foreign militaries around the world. (But am I the only person worrying that the most extensive U.S. connection to a lot of countries seems to be through their generals?). The foreign-policy bureaucracy in Washington is still busy churning out talking points for the next set of summit(s), principals' meetings, or visits from foreign dignitaries. Of course, the vast, top-secret intelligence and counterterrorism empire created after the 9/11 attacks is continuing to burn up $billions, collect gazilla-bytes of data, and Keep Us Safe against a wildly overstated threat.



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