Daniel McAdams discusses the latest incident in the strange story of the U.S.-backed coup attempts in Venezuela, which seek to replace President Maduro with someone more friendly to “American interests,” like Juan Guaidó. Most recently, a small operation by a few American special forces troops was thwarted almost as soon as it began, leaving Guaidó and his followers looking even more impotent, and ironically boosting Maduro’s popularity. McAdams stresses the need for the United States to mind its own business, leading by example rather than trying to meddle in the affairs of other countries. The global coronavirus crisis has made it especially clear that America simply does not have the resources to interfere all over the world, since it cannot even manage things particularly well at home.
Daniel McAdams is the executive director of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity and the co-host of the Ron Paul Liberty Report. Follow him on Twitter @DanielLMcAdams and read all of his work over at Antiwar.com.
This episode of the Scott Horton Show is sponsored by: NoDev NoOps NoIT, by Hussein Badakhchani; The War State, by Mike Swanson; WallStreetWindow.com; Tom Woods’ Liberty Classroom; ExpandDesigns.com/Scott; Listen and Think Audio; TheBumperSticker.com; and LibertyStickers.com.
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The following is an automatically generated transcript.
Scott Horton 0:10
All right, y’all welcome it’s Scott Horton Show. I am the director of the Libertarian Institute editorial director of antiwar.com, author of the book Fool’s Errand: Time to End the War in Afghanistan. And I’ve recorded more than 5000 interviews going back to 2003, all of which are available at ScottHorton.org. You can also sign up to the podcast feed. The full archive is also available at youtube.com/ScottHortonShow. Aren’t you guys introducing the great Dan McAdams from the ron paul Institute for peace and prosperity and of course, co host of the Liberty report with Dr. Paul as well. Ron Paul institute.org is the web address. How are you Dan, welcome back to the show.
Dan McAdams 0:59
I’m great. Scott, thanks for having me back. How you doing?
Scott Horton 1:02
I’m doing great man. Very happy to have you here and to talk about the Bay of Kooks. That’s what I’m calling good stuff. They had the Bay of Pigs and the Bay of goats and this one is the Bay of losers, I guess. Some former Green Berets, a couple former Green Berets failed miserably at launching some kind of coup in Venezuela. Can you get us up to speed Dan?
Dan McAdams 1:29
Yeah, it’s pretty amazing and it’s hard to really get a handle on it. But you know, the, the more I sniff Scott, the more I smell, the horrible smell of Mike Pompeo and Elliott Abrams. But, but, you know, apparently, you know, this has been in the works for a while. Certainly AlJazeera has done some good reporting in the Washington Post has also published the documents each question that you know, there was a contract between this green beret, this Goudreau, and one guy dough himself to do this overthrow meal sounds kind of half baked. You know, I don’t know that they had, we do know there were a bunch of troops that were over the border in Colombia, they’ve been cooling their hills for a while. If you remember, Scott, maybe I’m not remembering exactly when they went over there. But as I remember, they were actually being badly fed, and they were in pretty bad condition. And apparently, they were supposed to be part of this plot. Of course, none of that came off and ended up being a couple of guys in a fishing boat that were pretty easily caught by the Venezuelan security forces here a few days ago. So it’s a very strange, very strange situation.
Scott Horton 2:36
It really does kind of sound like the Bay of Pigs right where the plan keeps changing, but they go ahead anyway. And by the time they implement the plan, they’ve got just one handful of guys and no capability whatsoever.
Dan McAdams 2:48
Yeah, and it also sounds like Elliott Abrams handiwork, you know, remember him in the 80s. He’s the guy behind the salvadorian death squads. He’s the guy behind all these right wing death squads and murder of of Archbishop Romero and all this. So this is the kind of stuff that he does. It always fails, of course, but it just kind of has that. And also when you when you add in the idea that there’s a there’s an increasing sense of desperation among those who are dying for regime change in Venezuela, those in Washington, I mean, it, you know, you start putting two and two together. And people say, Well, this looks too stupid to be, you know, something that the US government’s involved in. Well, guess what? No, it wouldn’t be the first time.
Scott Horton 3:33
Yeah, no, certainly, stupidity is no way to conclude that the US was not involved. I mean, if anything, maybe the size of the mission itself would raise questions about how involved the US was, if they got a green light. You’d like to think that somebody would have thought that they actually had some sort of workable plan here, rather than one boat full of Kooks who walked right into a trap but
Dan McAdams 4:01
Yeah, but you know how the neo cons always oversell things. Remember, it’s a cakewalk. Don’t worry, let’s go into Iraq. It’ll be easy. And they were saying the same things about Venezuela last year in the April attempted coup, this is going to be easy. It’ll be over in a couple of days. And they always oversell this and say how easy it is. And then, of course, when it goes badly, they say, well, we didn’t see that coming. Right. Now that suggested as well, I think.
Scott Horton 4:26
Yeah, I mean, that certainly, I mean, they said that all they had to do was for Guido to declare himself president and the army would defect and the people of Venezuela would rally around him and all of these things and who knows that they really believe that or that was just what they told the boss and so ended up becoming the party line. They couldn’t escape from or what but, of course, that was nowhere near true, but they went ahead anyway. And so, yeah, and that was two different failed crews with wydo. Last year, right?
Dan McAdams 4:57
Yeah, yeah, absolutely. The one with the delivery of aid. Which is total setup? And, you know, and and then the one where they sprung Lopez from from, from the slammer. And, you know, before he could even get out he had to hide in another embassy. I forget what it was. But, you know, the thing is, if this was the case, and they really did believe this would be successful, you have to question, you know, our intelligence analysts, our intelligence resources, we do spend a couple of bucks a year on the CIA and all these intelligence agencies. Are there some good analysts there somewhere who, who knew all along this was a total nightmare? Or is this kind of circular thinking par for the course? In which case, we’re not getting very much for our money?
Scott Horton 5:44
Yeah. Well, yeah, certainly. All right. Well, in any case, we aren’t but yeah, you’re right about the stupidity there. And you know, the unreality that these people cling to me if you go back to the failed coup of a year ago, where Guess the first one, where they had the clip of the armored personnel carrier running over a guy think he didn’t even die. And they just played that one clip a million times on every channel. Like who would have thought at ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN and Fox, there’s one pool camera for the entire country of Venezuela, the entire city of Caracas, and all they can show us is this 110 second clip of and and the guys in the armored personnel carrier, they’re cops, not soldiers, and the protesters are throwing Molotov cocktails at them. So it’s sort of a fair fight in a way. Um, but anyway, then you had to go to Twitter to see the drone footage of the hundreds of thousands of people who turned out the revolution turned out to surround the presidential palace facing out to defend this, you know, horrible socialist president who you You know, with the oil glut just resorted to the printing press and has completely destroyed the economy of the country. Hey, at least he’s not a foreign American sock puppet, like why doe? And so the revolution showed up to side with the president to protect Venezuelan independence, which makes perfect sense. You know, right wingers would rally to protect Barack Obama if it was against a foreign backed coup. Right. Liberals would support Donald Trump if it was Hillary teaming up with the Chinese against them or something, wouldn’t they? Probably, I hope,
Dan McAdams 7:37
human nature. I mean, we don’t have to be brilliant intelligence analysts to understand how people behave when they feel that their country is under threat. And that’s I mean, it’s, it’s it’s so obvious you almost wonder if that, you know, by design, I mean, my first thought when I read about this bungle coup, this this time, was, I mean, that sounds like something Maduro would cook up, except I don’t think he’s smart enough, but it’s The only person who benefits from this is Maduro. Right looks like a guy who’s he’s, he’s supposed to be destabilized now he’s supposed to be hiding in a bunker right now. And here he is. He’s got this crack team of people who are protecting the Venezuelans from the evil Yankees. He looks, he looks great. So my first thought was, maybe he launched it there.
Scott Horton 8:20
Hey, that’s a great point, you know, when there was that drone attack against him. That was the CIA and the Washington Post line then was he probably arranged this himself just to look like a victim? Because they at least understand that Yeah, the more he looks like a victim of foreign power, the more support that he has inside the country. The Americans even have a term for it. The rally around the flag effect. Yeah, I don’t know if there’s a study where they coined that term or where that comes from. Exactly, but that’s what they refer to it as.
Dan McAdams 8:50
And if not unprecedented, you know, toward the later years of Shevardnadze and Georgia, when he’d become more and more tyrannical. It was pretty common that he would say assassination attempt every few months and and get away with it. And so he could basically go ahead and take his political and, you know, as they say in Casablanca, round up the usual suspects, you know, so it’s not it’s not unprecedented to do something like this
Scott Horton 9:14
yet. And of course, you know, whoever’s behind this plot, although, yeah, I think it’s probably looks more like a pompeyo than Maduro in this case. Or the same thing for the drone. It works either way, you know, and it’s just like Randolph Bourne said wars, the health of the state, unless you lose, in which case, yeah, no, but But otherwise, you know, of course, people are gonna side with their later it was just talking with a expert on Yemen, about how people who are not at all Zaidi Shia support the Houthis. Why? Because they’re the government of the country while it’s being bombed by foreign powers. And so, yeah, they rally around the flag as well. They should or as at least, as well, they should be expected to do.
Dan McAdams 9:56
Yeah, absolutely. You know, that you know, the work. It’s dangerous. And I my old go to is anti war calm. Of course they’ve got a great piece from Jason today, about pompeyo, vowing he’ll use every tool to rescue Americans from the failed Venezuela attack. That’s where it gets dangerous because the neo cons are going to use their own failures, if they’re indeed behind this, which I suspect they are, they’re going to use their massive failure. These two guys that are out there, they’re basically you know, they’re basically a trap. You know, they’re they’re a tripwire or what have you. And so now pompeyo is going to do his own rally around the flag. We got to save our guys, these are brave, Special Forces, guys, we’re gonna do something so in a way, they’re trying to make lemonade out of lemons that they’ve given us
Scott Horton 10:41
yeah. When it’s so obvious that they could just negotiate the to get them back, you know, with not too much trouble. It’s not like Maduro is gonna get all brave and start torturing these guys and disappear them off into some dungeon or whatever. He’s not that stupid. And that’s not how the dynamics of this situation are. Set up at all for him to fool in that way.
Dan McAdams 11:03
I mean, I’m the master diplomat, but I could put out the deal very easily. Look, we’ll give you these two guys back. Don’t do anything when we arrest Guido and the people that he plotted with because his name, he signed the thing, his names on the check. Let us take care of this guy that he was not super thrilled with Guido anyway, that guy’s a total loser. And so basically, it’s a win win for everyone. They could probably get that done in an afternoon. You know? So pay. Oh, don’t thank me, but just do it. Right.
Scott Horton 11:30
Yeah, exactly. And you know what you should think Dan McAdams. He deserves credit for coming up with that great plan. Anyway. And of course, as you said, the guy is a total loser. And I’d like to give you a chance to discuss that a little bit further. Because, you know, there are people who, and it’s understandable. It’s not completely reasonable, but it’s understandable that people just look at the left wing economics of this government and how low Venezuela’s been brought and you know, people in the libertarian movement Especially in the Libertarian Party and a lot of right wingers who, you know really are more paleo types and certainly should know better. Boy, when it comes to a coup against Maduro, all of a sudden, it’s the left that’s the enemy, not the American state, but the left in the world. And so if it’s a right wing coup, maybe it’s something we should support.
Dan McAdams 12:21
And yeah, and meanwhile, socialism, the US has gone through the roof. You know, we’ve got a president. We’ve got a president and we’ve got a house of representatives who make who make Maduro look like living on knees, this. He’s Maduro is not printing up, you know, $6 trillion to hand out to the cronies, like like Trump and Pelosi are doing. So you know, it’s always easier to see. You know, the splinter in someone else’s eye, I guess is the biblical reference. And that’s the case here, but it is it’s like a dog whistle to a lot of libertarians. Does that mean that Scott Horton Daniel McAdams loves socialism? No, not at all. But you know, really true lasting, sustained change is always evolutionary, very seldom the revolutions, there are a few exceptions, but very seldom, the revolutions end in a situation where the people are better off than the status quo co ante. That’s just, that’s just a fact.
Scott Horton 13:16
You know, especially when we’re giving them the excuse, just like in Iran, to say that all opposition is backed by the CIA and therefore completely discredited and irrelevant, which is a great propaganda line if you’re the ayatollah, or you’re Maduro, to say that everybody loves me, except the CIA sock puppets. Everyone knows that, you know?
Dan McAdams 13:38
Yeah. And that was the case. You know, I was in Cuba A while ago, and I was working for Dr. Pol. And that’s what everyone said, Everyone in the government officials, hey, don’t blame us. If it wasn’t for this embargo. We’d be a paradise now. So they never take any of the blame for it. And the best the best strategy with Maduro and Venezuela would be the opposite of what we’re doing, which is to completely and totally open up. So then the benefits Oh, yeah, but there might be some corruption. Oh, well, I think all we don’t have any of that are here in the US. Right? Right, completely open up and show them by example. Yeah, it may not be a libertarian paradise, but neither is the US. They would be better off if we if we reached out in friendship rather than with with a fist, you know? Yep.
Scott Horton 14:19
Hey, guys, just real quick. If you listen to the interviews only feed at the institute or at Scott Horton. org. I just want to make sure you know that I do a q&a show from time to time at Scott Horton. org slash show the old whole show feed. And so if you like that kind of thing, check that out there. Hey, guys, here’s how to support this show. You can donate various amounts at Scott Horton. org slash donate. We’ve got some great kickbacks for you there. Shop amazon.com by way of my link at Scott Horton. org, leave a good review for the show and iTunes and Stitcher. Tell a friend Oh, yeah, and by my books, fool’s errand time to end the world. Afghanistan and the great Ron Paul, the Scott Horton show interviews 2004 through 2019 and thanks Hey guys check out listen and think audiobooks, they’re listening, think calm, and of course on audible.com and they feature my book fool’s errand time to end the war in Afghanistan as well as brand new out inside Syria by our friend Rhys, Eric, and a lot of other great books, mostly by libertarians there. Reese might be one exception, but essentially, they’re all libertarian audio books. And here’s how you can get a lifetime subscription to listen and think audiobooks. just donate $100 to the Scott Horton show at Scott Horton org slash donate Alright, so But tell us about Guido this guy this loser as you call them this what they call an acting president, even though he’s not acting like one.
Dan McAdams 15:55
I mean, he’s picked out of he’s picked out of a lineup by Mike Pence. You know, no doubt with neo cons. whispering in his ear, you know, Mike called him up one day and said, Hey, if you declare yourself president, we’re going to recognize you. And of course he did but talk about how many millions of dollars have gone through him and his political parties and his cronies, nothing to show for it. There were several stories about how a lot of this money was wasted. I think he had some delegation was in Colombia maybe that they spent a couple hundred thousand bucks on prostitutes and drugs over a weekend. So there’s a lot of this corruption going on. Even the even the coup that he tried to to start with Lopez never went anywhere. And even the US if you remember a couple of weeks ago, they they’re trying to launch something where they’ll bring in some opposition that’s not Guido and try to try to have a roundtable thing there. So even the US neo cons, I think, have to agree given up on Guido it’s just a non starter that guys, you know, he just doesn’t have it in him and he’s just not Popular. You know, you can’t have a coup when you’re just not popular. So where it goes, I mean, and that actually would bring up another thing if you’re conspiratorial. Maybe the US did do this. It did have guado sign on, because they got to get rid of this loser. And now there’s every excuse in the world for Maduro to arrest him. I mean, it’s out there in the open. So maybe that’s what it’s really all about.
Scott Horton 17:22
Yeah, what what sure is sacrificing him the hard way, but I guess it doesn’t cost them anything. So
Dan McAdams 17:28
well, ask Noriega about what happens when you’re on the CIA payroll, and they get ticked off at you, right.
Scott Horton 17:34
Boy, there we go, CIA guys. And, you know, here’s the thing about Guido too. And, you know, I can’t imagine that this is any different in Venezuela than it would be in the United States. But he has quite literally and specifically and explicitly called for American military intervention in Venezuela to put him in power which is the most treasonous treason the You could possibly come up with. Yeah, what must be the opinion of the average Venezuelan? about a guy like that?
Dan McAdams 18:08
Yeah, I can, like you said earlier you suggested earlier, I can imagine even the most vehement anti trumper getting any kind of traction by saying something like that, hey, Chinese, please come in and take out this guy. It’s just it’s so anathema to normal people that I just can’t imagine how that could be popular.
Scott Horton 18:27
Yeah. And occasionally, you do see a liberal pundit type, say it’s time for a military coup d’etat here and they get shouted down even by center left liberal democrat types, you know, won’t put up with that. But add on top of that, a foreign military ought to go ahead and get rid of Trump for us. Yeah, right. You can find one person in 100 million in this country who would support that in under any circumstances.
Dan McAdams 18:54
So I think that’s par for the course anywhere else. Absolutely. Yep.
Scott Horton 18:57
And and how could he be so stupid as to publicly say that, that that’s what he wants to see. See, Think the Venezuelans don’t speak English at all that those, those quotations are not going to make it back home again, in the age of the internet, you know, it’s nuts
Dan McAdams 19:14
Yeah. It may be his CIA paymasters, or, you know, putting the words into his mouth, and once he’s on the gravy train, you know, who wants to go back to obscurity when all this money is running through you? So who knows what kind of constraints he’s on at the CIA? They’re not a bunch of school boys, you know, they, they demand something for their money, as well.
Scott Horton 19:33
Yeah. Well, and so again, to if this wasn’t all, you know, the vested interests of the Americans and their cronies in Venezuela, but they wanted what they claimed to want, which is the best for the people there, then, you know, refusing to intervene and instead just lecturing them, you know, no sanctions, but just telling them, see how it doesn’t work when you do it your way, would be so much more effective. Especially with the absolute collapse of the price of oil right now, they’re going to have to figure out something to diversify their economy, they’re not going to be able to carry on like Hugo Chavez did at the height of the fuel bubble of the George W. Bush era back then those days are over, they’re going to have to figure out something else. And if it was just the Americans dispensing advice, and not being the world’s worst hypocrites about it, then they’d probably be a lot closer to abandoning their inflation policies. And, you know, figuring out some different way to approach it, you know, wouldn’t have to be complete laissez faire, but they couldn’t possibly carry on the way they are now. And yet, again, all our intervention against them only solidifies the problem, which is a very serious problem, right? I mean, the government has essentially destroyed the currency there and millions of people have fled. I don’t know exactly how much At least a million people have left the country over the last few years over it.
Dan McAdams 21:05
Yeah, but you know, here’s what here’s what shows that you know why the neo cons are among I think most evil people on earth is they view this as a good thing, just like they view when the Iranians were suffering from the COVID-19. In far disproportion numbers than a lot of other countries. You know, the pump pail out note said, This is great. They’re gonna they’re being brought to their knees. They view the suffering of average people, no matter what you think about Venezuela, some average guy just trying to make a living. He’s not to blame for for any of this, but anyone who looks at that and rubs their hands with glee is just kind of a special kind of evil, I think.
Scott Horton 21:45
Yeah. Well, and they’re not ignorant of it either. I mean, Mike Pompeo in specific had cited the beaching of boat in Japan, North Vietnamese I’m in pardon me in North Korean fishing boat with a dead man on board and said, haha, see the sanctions are working?
Dan McAdams 22:09
Yeah, I remember that
Scott Horton 22:11
sighting, specifically some poor dead peasant. And saying this is a measure of the success of our policy here. So it’s not like they’re ignoring that and pretending that only the ruling elite are the ones suffering or some kind. Well, they’re very targeted sanctions. Yeah, they’re targeted against the very poorest most desperate people in Korea, in Venezuela in Iran, and you name it.
Dan McAdams 22:35
People who were starving and from the looks of Mike he’s not doing a lot of starving lately. So it is certainly not it assists it’s very evil, very evil stuff. And, you know, I, I, you know, I we’ve been disappointed for a long time. Trump’s rhetoric has not matched his actions, but, you know, I still have to hold out some hope otherwise I’d become suicidal. But I do hope that maybe this will be the breaking straw where you know, the world last straw where Trump finally gets rid of pompeyo and brings in someone who’s decent may not exactly be our kind of guy, but who’s a little bit better than these guys. And I guess I just have to cross my fingers.
Scott Horton 23:12
I mean, after all pompeyo can’t blame this one on Bolton.
Dan McAdams 23:15
Yeah, yeah, that’s right. That’s right. But there are some realists that you and I both know who are prominent enough. And as I say, they wouldn’t be perfect non interventionist, but at least at least they would be bringing us toward the right direction.
Scott Horton 23:29
Yeah, you know, someone should, I guess they wouldn’t allow this. So we should do some skywriting. Like, hey, Trump go to national interest.org they’re not that radical there but you can find Paul pillar and, uh, you know, Doug bondo, and a few other great, you know, writers. They’re good enough guys for him to read.
Dan McAdams 23:49
And absolutely, absolutely.
Scott Horton 23:51
By the way, I brought it up so I have to bring it up that Doug is writing for us at anti war calm again.
Dan McAdams 23:57
Oh, that’s great. News. Yeah,
Scott Horton 23:58
we are recording Really happy about that. And his his most recent one is about Afghanistan and is really something else too. So great.
Dan McAdams 24:05
Yeah, I’ve liked Doug and Ted Carpenter for the longest time. I have a lot of respect for those two guys. Yeah,
Scott Horton 24:10
they are definitely the best we got. And yet, you know, it really is as simple as you know, Trump probably doesn’t even know that there’s one good handful of guys that he could hire, obviously ran for Secretary of State would be the, you know, the big step to make. But then there are plenty of guys over there at the national interest and at the American Conservative and a couple other places. Who, at Cato, who have the credentials, who could be his national security staff and his, you know, secretaries and his foreign policy departments and do just fine. Yeah, Paul pillar for National Intelligence director and, you know, Doug McGregor for national security adviser and just a couple others like that we’d be sent.
Dan McAdams 24:59
Yeah, we do. certainly be going in the better direction in a more apt to use his term America first direction. Yeah.
Scott Horton 25:06
So what would Sheldon Adelson say? Yeah,
Dan McAdams 25:09
yeah, we can’t hold our breath because it’s I don’t know, I mean we get a lot of criticism for being too soft on Trump. But the thing is if you give up all hope Then why don’t we just hold up the tent and go home? You know? I mean, we have to keep trying and keep pushing.
Scott Horton 25:24
Well, and you know, I mean, he seems to want to get the troops out of Afghanistan and there’s even quotes and I’m not putting too much stock in this but there’s some quotes of him saying really, he wants it done by the election, nevermind by next May, like in the deal he wants out by the election. And, you know, that’s a huge opportunity for the American people to chime in and say, yeah, you know what, that’s what we want to have. You don’t want to be reelected. Don’t be afraid of the Hawks saying that they’re gonna blame you for losing. Know that the American people We’ll cheer that you’re finally, you know, stopping, wasting all these lives and all this money on this no win war and and then with the positive reinforcement and all that he might figure out, he could conceivably figure out that, wow, he’s got a lot of wars to end to start ending wars every couple of months and be Donald Trump did great in the space of a year, you know?
Dan McAdams 26:29
Absolutely. Absolutely. And, you know, that’s how he won the first time. I mean, he was I couldn’t believe some of the stuff he said it was. It was really good. You know about Yeah,
Scott Horton 26:37
I couldn’t believe it either. But it was nice.
Dan McAdams 26:40
Yeah, it was nice. Well, we can hope.
Scott Horton 26:44
Yeah. Well, and and he really is smart enough to take both sides of every issue and that includes foreign policy, but he’ll say on one day that yes, we’re gonna have to make some social security reforms because we just can’t afford this and then the next day come out and be like, I will protect social Security forever No matter what, and you know, when I eat like that on every issue. So as a foreign policy, he knows that we’re also divided between hawks and doves that he can say, just enough to please everybody. And, you know, where it really counts is Israeli policy, and that includes America’s position toward Iran. But you know, and I guess the military is itself and and the arms industries have a lot of interest in picking a fight with Russia and China, but it seems like by and large, that’s not where the votes are, you know, in terms of Israel yet is because all of that money, you know, for the party for the congressional elections and all that kind of stuff. But on the rest of it, especially after the virus and all of this, I don’t know, man, it’s and you know, what, partially just because it’s an election year and it’s a round number year 2020 fold Solid decades into the new century and all these things that I think it really does, at least there’s a possibility here for the creation and the pushing of a real spirit that the era of the bush and obama wars must come to an end. Now, we can’t afford it. We don’t want it. All we want to hear from this President is that he agrees and is really going to follow through and then this stuff, and it’s probably the best chance we’ve had in a long time.
Dan McAdams 28:29
Yeah, refocused on defending this country. He won’t, you won’t have to sound weak, you can sound next even stronger. You’re going to redouble our efforts to defend our country, but we just can’t afford to defend other countries. Simple. You know, I
Scott Horton 28:42
had this whole idea for what to say in my big debate with Bill Kristol that’s now been postponed till July or some other time I don’t really know. But it’s a whole new and different argument. Now. I was gonna say all this really smart stuff, you know, but now it seems more like who could argue After this Corona virus crisis Hear that? Yeah, what we should have been doing the last 20 years was screwing around in these stupid wars in the Middle East, you know, for Bill Kristol vanity or whatever it was.
Dan McAdams 29:14
Yeah, exactly who can argue that that’s true? Perfect. Yeah.
Scott Horton 29:18
Right. It’s just the burden of proof is on him to such a degree now, like, what argument do I even need to make? You know?
Dan McAdams 29:26
Absolutely. Absolutely. I hope you get the chance to do that, because we’re all gonna be watching with popcorn.
Scott Horton 29:33
Yeah, I know. I hope I do, too. I’m betting that it’s going to happen within the next two or three months.
Dan McAdams 29:40
That’d be great.
Scott Horton 29:41
So see, all right, man. Well, so any other wars we need to make sure and mentioned today before I let you go, Dan?
Dan McAdams 29:49
Well, this is another whole topic, but I’m very concerned about the rhetoric on China. You know, it worries me a lot. We’re looking for a scapegoat and You know, the Chinese aren’t they’re not gonna sit back and listen to themselves being blamed for this virus, you know? And so that’s that’s what worries me the most is this potential war with China.
Scott Horton 30:10
Yeah. And and you know it’s funny because it’s one of those things where we don’t really have anything to fight about we kind of gotta make something I mean the status quo in in Hong Kong changing a little bit that’s no cost this belly doesn’t look like they’re about to attack Taiwan, which we don’t really have a war guaranteed to Taiwan, just sort of a half a one as it exists right now. So we’d have to kind of be sure to pick a fight with them to get one and yet you know, I it kind of makes it more difficult right when the excuse for war is so thin. It sort of, in a perverse way makes the the government that much more married to their narrative about how necessary it is. And you know that less Capable of backing down sort of like, you know, so damn insane Saddam Hussein. He’s just too crazy and too hitlerian to ever talk to again. And so yeah, I would say lay down that marker. Now we can never talk to him again. He’s Hitler. Hmm. You know, that kind of deal. So, yeah, I don’t know, man, I think and there are plenty of vested interests, especially in the Navy and in the Marine Corps, who seemed to be, you know, quite interested in figuring out a way to fight them somewhere somehow.
Dan McAdams 31:34
That’s the case and there are a lot of people who won’t be doing the fighting that are behind desks in Washington think tanks that are, you know, looking to pad and feather their nest calling for war? No, you know, it’s again,
Scott Horton 31:48
it makes sense to me that these guys, you know, some of them in the Air Force or whichever would have their interest in picking a fight with Iran, because then they get to demonstrate their capabilities and this and that The other thing, and after all, full scale air war against Iran, the USA eventually would decimate them right, even without nukes. But you can’t fight China Dan, they got h bombs. And that’s the end of the argument. And yet that doesn’t seem to be the end of the argument. mutually assured destruction is canceled, based on what like we just squeeze our eyes close real tight and pretend that we don’t know that the Chinese have h bombs that they can reach out and touch us with.
Dan McAdams 32:29
And the fact of the matter is that Chinese are extraordinarily cautious people, you know, and I, I did China policy for a long time with Dr. Paul and the idea that they’re gonna wake up one morning and say, hey, let’s let’s mess up the US and give them a virus. It just it just doesn’t it just doesn’t go with the way they think. So this is all manufactured, unfortunately.
Scott Horton 32:48
Yeah. And of course, look at the hit that they’ve taken with this stupid virus breaking out there. It’s the worst thing that’s happened to them since Mao.
Dan McAdams 32:58
Yeah, absolutely. So what’s in it for them?
Scott Horton 33:00
Yeah, definitely nothing. And in terms of public relations, I mean, this is going to cost them trillions into the, you know, decades into the future the repercussions from this thing. So yeah, the idea that they had done this to anyone deliberately is completely nuts. But you’re right, though that for the Hawks. Hey, it’s just an excuse to pick a fight. They don’t have to believe it, you know?
Dan McAdams 33:23
Yeah, they don’t have to. So it’s disturbing to see people who otherwise doing great work like Tucker Carlson and falling for this, you know, he’s got a lot of power in his position, and it just just doesn’t make any sense.
Scott Horton 33:37
Yeah. And, you know, it’s really, it’s the same thing with the whole, you know, pretension of the War on Terrorism, too. And this clash of civilizations with Islam. I mean, you’re talking about a sixth of the population of the planet. Same thing with China. Like, you know, what, one way or the other the earth has to be big enough for the both of us for all of us, and we got To figure this out, America and you know, our civilization and Chinese civilization have to live as neighbors from now on forever. We can never fight them ever, without losing, you know, our entire civilization, not just our lives but everything that we’ve worked for for centuries to build would be gone in an instant if we fought a real war with China. So that’s it. We’re just gonna have to figure it out some other way. Figure it out.
Dan McAdams 34:26
Yeah. And the silver lining of this Coronavirus business maybe and I was on a panel discussion with George sunwell a couple of days ago, is you know, maybe the US will start rethinking its national religion, which is American exceptionalism. If we don’t lead the world will fall apart, because we have not LED on this crisis. And you know, people are countries are going along in their own pace. So if it destroys this national religion of ours, then it’ll be a good thing.
Scott Horton 34:52
Yeah, absolutely. Right. And it’s only so obvious, right? The counterfactuals are just right there for me. anyone’s imagination to pick up on if you just drop the fear for a minute. And just think about America, you know, trying to live the Americans in their sight trying to live as a limited constitutional republic instead of this world Empire like, you know, under the excuse for protecting the world from the Soviet Union that ceased to exist 30 years ago. And all of this stuff, how much better things could be, you know, if all that money that we’ve spent on the War on Terrorism over the last 20 years, if that had just been invested in goods and services in the United States? Yeah. Yeah, you know, throughout the rest of the world, just how much better things would be right now than they are? I mean, it’s essentially inescapable. And then, and when you read the Hawks and all their excuses to fight, man, they’re getting thin,
Dan McAdams 35:51
you know? Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. But we’ve got a big job ahead of us trying to convince Americans to not be afraid yet.
Scott Horton 36:00
Yeah, well, and especially now, but, but then again, you know, their their vision has, if anything has become that much more narrow in terms or their sight, you know, in terms of what’s really important, and that cuts both ways. You know, it makes it easier to ignore what’s going on overseas. But at the same time, it really does kind of bring home that wow, we have how many troops in how many bases and how many countries around the world. When everything here is falling apart, and all that money is being wasted now that we want troops to hold things together here, but just all that money being wasted all that manpower being wasted, and, and the position of our country and our reputation around the world, our relationship with the rest of mankind being put into such, you know, perverse straits, where it doesn’t need to be this way at all should be so obvious. But yeah,
Dan McAdams 36:58
and hopefully people will start thinking that way. because that’ll be the beginning of a real revolution.
Scott Horton 37:02
Yeah. And you know, so hey, call out to all ron paul Institute and libertarian Institute and anti war.com. Fans, everybody, right? Everybody do a podcast? Everybody, you know, I don’t know call a congressman staffer and have a good long talk with him. Everybody do a little something to to help to push this narrative that even if it’s not cnn choice of important topic for this new cycle, the American people want to see the wars ended now. I think we can have that.
Dan McAdams 37:38
Absolutely. That’s a great, that’s a great parting message.
Scott Horton 37:41
All right, you guys. That is Dan McAdams, Patna with the great ron paul down there at the ron paul Institute for peace and prosperity. And they host the Liberty report every day. Well, four days a week, Chris was senior on Fridays and you can find that Ron Paul Liberty report.com and of course the ron paul Institute is at Ron Paul institute.org. Thanks so much again, Dan.
Dan McAdams 38:08
Thank you, Scott.
Scott Horton 38:10
The Scott Horton show, Antiwar Radio can be heard on kpfk 90.7 FM in LA, APSradio.com antiwar.com ScottHorton.org and libertarianinstitute.org