Never underestimate the stupidity of our rulers.
When Judge Andrew Napolitano of Freedom Watch asked me if I thought President Obama would intervene in Libya, I said, “No, he’s too smart for that.” I attribute my misreading of events to my reading of the President’s general demeanor. Obama projects the aura of a disinterested scientist, the cool observer unmoved by the passions of ordinary people. He conveys objectivity—and, by any objective standard, the case for entering yet another maze of tribal and religious rivalries borders on nonexistent. Even Robert Gates—hardly a noninterventionist—came out publicly against a no-fly zone over Libya. Surely the President would take the advice of his secretary of defense.
I had forgotten the central principle that underlies much of my own writing, and that is the principle of self-preservation—the idea that our rulers are concerned with preserving their own power, and that politics, not the “national interest,” is the real causative factor when it comes to policymaking.
The politics of the Libyan adventure signal a new unity in the War Party, a renewed alliance of liberal “humanitarian” interventionists and neoconservatives. For the latter, the outbreak of any war involving the United States is cause for celebration. For the former, it’s a chance to celebrate Obama...