Blogs > Liberty and Power > Where Are the Isolationists?

Feb 7, 2006 7:57 am

Where Are the Isolationists?

President Bush’s State of the Union address was one odd speech indeed. Besides his silly statement about our being “addicted to oil” and his messianic declarations in response to the “call of history,” he referred to isolationism four different times. Who favors isolationism?
The rest of my latest op-ed,"Where Are the Isolationists?," is here at The Future of Freedom Foundation website.

Cross-posted at Free Association.

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Roderick T. Long - 2/7/2006

Indeed, not only there is no necessary connection between isolationism (in the sense of military nonintervention) and protectionism, but in fact protectionism tends to lead to military intervention -- which is why the great defenders of free trade (Bastiat, Sumner, Cobden & Bright, etc.) were also great opponents of military intervention. The classic line (often attributed to Bastiat, though dubiously -- but he would cetainly have agreed with it) is "Where goods do not cross borders, armies will." Mises in Omnipotent Government argues in detail that attempts to enforce protectionism are one of the great causes of war.