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John McCain and the Neocons' Usurping of the GOP

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McCain's resurgence marks a turning point for the GOP— but this is by no means a turn for the better.

His ascendance marks the final defeat of the old GOP— a GOP that once favored limited government; limits on executive powers; a (mostly) non-interventionist foreign policy based on national interest; a strong role for local and state governments; personal and civil liberties; low taxes; a free-market economy; and opposition to the welfare-warfare state.

The new GOP, now gathered around neocon hawk John McCain, no longer represents any of these once-foundational principles. Instead, the Beltway neoconservatives have usurped the party, effectively marginalizing the last remaining elements of traditional conservatism.

(Now for some of Ryan’s notoriously accurate predictions.)

If up against Clinton, McCain, having convinced the public that only his foreign policy is in America’s best interest, will win by a comfortable margin (even though the foreign policies of the two candidates differ only in style). If, however, Obama wins the Democratic nomination, he will secure enough of the anti-war vote to defeat McCain.

But should McCain win, war with Iran would begin almost immediately, and the conflict could easily spread throughout the region. We would also see an increase of American interference in Pakistan (possibly leading to war), accompanied by the erosion of our civil and personal liberties at home.

Under a McCain presidency, there might even be some new and surprising military interventions elsewhere in the globe (say, in parts of Africa). The result of all this: more death and destruction, new alliances against the U.S., increased global instability, and the beginning of the collapse of the American economy, due to imperial overstretch.

Unfortunately, the media has succeeded in convincing the public that McCain is a "straight-shooting" moderate from the realist camp. He isn't. His supposed "war criticisms"— such as when he publicly attacked Rumsfeld— have always been carefully-worded calls for wider war, for more "boots on the ground," and for more military intervention.

McCain is, to quote Justin Raimondo from his article in The American Conservative, "a militant suffering from acute narcissism," who believes that it is America's manifest destiny to spread its goodness— at any cost— to all corners of the globe.

And so, my fellow conservatives, liberals, progressives, Greens, Commies, libertarians, anarchists, Trotskyists, Whigs, and Maoists— we must all put our ideological differences aside, and unite to stop this man from getting any closer to the White House!

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Ryan is a researcher of Japanese literature currently investigating the influence, for better or worse, that the importation of Western realism had on modern Japanese literary history. He keeps a blog -- -- that is in (more...)
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