I have suffered through another Republican debate. This debate in Nevada is the last one for the year. As usual, I will offer my libertarian perspective.
Considering it was hosted by CNN, some of the questions were decent, or at least as good as I could have hoped for coming from the so-called mainstream media. Of course, there was nothing crazy, such as a question about the Federal Reserve.
It started out with Rand Paul attacking Marco Rubio and Donald Trump in his opening. That didn’t work out too well for Rand Paul in the very first debate when he attacked Trump. At least his criticisms had merit this time.
It was also a battle of senators. Rubio and Ted Cruz were exchanging blows and Rand Paul was also facing off against Rubio. Cruz, despite being a war hawk, was taking a position of respecting privacy (or one could say respecting the Constitution), at least to a degree.
Trump and Jeb Bush went at it because Bush was trying to take down Trump. It mostly backfired on Bush, as Trump is just a better speaker and debater.
I don’t have a lot to say about John Kasich, Carly Fiorina, or Chris Christie. It was their typical styles and they mostly take establishment positions.
Ben Carson was his typical boring self. He seems like a nice enough guy until he says he has no problem killing children when bombing ISIS.
Jeb Bush is just pathetic, but he is still the establishment choice. He has no chance of getting the Republican nomination unless there is a brokered convention and there are a lot of dirty tricks by the Republican insiders – which isn’t out of the question.
Marco Rubio is the backup choice right now for the Republican establishment. He is a good talker. He is pro war, although perhaps not as much as some of the others.
Ted Cruz is all over the place. He is decent on some economic issues (which weren’t discussed). He was decent in the debate with some civil liberty issues. But then he is one of the biggest war hawks.
Rand Paul was by far the best candidate from a libertarian perspective. That isn’t saying much. His entire campaign is a tragedy though. He has received some terrible advice, starting with separating himself from his father. He could have done a lot of good. He could have been a contender.
Last but not least is Donald Trump. He is all over the place, especially with foreign policy. He sounds very rational compared to the others when it comes to some things. Then he sounds like a total dictator. He has absolutely no respect for the Constitution or for the separation of powers.
He has gone down a lot in my eyes over the last few weeks. Last week was a reality check, as I wrote about Trump a lot last week – first on banning Muslims, second on banning guns. Now Trump says he wants to bomb family members of ISIS. He says he is ok with shutting down parts of the internet. I don’t even know what that means. He could potentially be the best president or the worst (from a libertarian perspective) out of all of the candidates. I fear he could be a complete dictator, especially while being a populist.
There is one final point about this debate and all of the questions about terrorism. While foreign policy is the biggest and most important issue, it is only that way because the U.S. government is so interventionist and involved in wars and occupations all over the place. It is statistically insane how much time is spent talking about terrorism though.
Aside from the fact that the U.S. government creates most of the terrorism, it is insane to spend so much time and energy talking about something that is so rare. It is insane to spend so much money (trillions of dollars?) and waste so many lives overseas.
There are over 300 million people living in the U.S. People die every day for a variety of reasons. When 14 people die in a shooting that is labeled terrorism, there are more people that died on that same day from car accidents, heart disease, and inner city shootings. 14 people dying would be considered a good month in some inner cities.
Unfortunately, due to the irrational fear of people and the power hungry politicians, it leads to trillions of dollars being wasted and tens of thousands of innocent lives overseas. There is little rational perspective on this issue from most sides.
Back to the debate, I don’t think too much is going to change. There are going to be one or two candidates that emerge as the main challengers to Trump. Right now, it appears to be Rubio and Cruz. Cruz is positioning himself to take the Trump supporters in case Trump says something stupid that actually hurts him.