This is the third of four articles spanning my discussion with Adam Kokesh. Read the first and second pieces.
Story by Joseph Ford Cotto
These are trying times for libertarians -- especially the orthodox sort.
With populism on the rise among both Republican and Democratic ranks, the Libertarian Party orbiting into near-electoral irrelevance, and seemingly little chance for change on the horizon, some might be tempted to give up on the liberty movement. (Read more here)
Adam Kokesh: I reject the premise of your question! The idea of a "national self-interest" is an illusion of forced collectivism. If you mean the interests of all the people living in the United States, then that which ties us together is our collective victimhood by government in the various names of forced collectivism. In your question, when you say, "a nation," you seem to referring to government, and it's very dangerous to mix up a government with a country. That's like referring to slaves on a plantation as part of the "plantation team." Trump's foreign policy is the same old continuation of the foreign policy of the military-industrial-complex that President Eisenhower warned us about. He is the entertainer-in-chief and his primary responsibility is to distract people from how badly we're all being ripped off. I think in that regard, he's doing a fine job.
Cotto: If one thing could be done to restructure our country's foreign policy, what would you suggest that it be?
Kokesh: If all human relationships should be non-violent and non-coercive, then we shouldn't have a government and we shouldn't have a foreign policy. We should be able to reach out to the rest of the world in peace, commerce, and friendship.
Cotto: If President Trump were to ask you what you think of the current US secret intelligence leaders, what would you tell him?
Kokesh: If Trump asked me that, I would answer the question I wish I was asked, instead of the one I was asked. I wish he would have asked, "How do I fix this government problem?" to which I would respond, "All you have to do is embrace a consistent standard of ethics to see that we would be better off without government entirely. You can begin this transition by immediately ceasing all directly unethical activity of the federal government (including nearly everything being done by US intelligence agencies) and localizing government as much as possible. If you can get Congress on board, you could even dissolve the entire federal government. C'mon, Mr President. Let's do the right thing. Make some history!"Cotto: If President Trump were to ask you to fix US intelligence -- both secret and open -- what would you tell him?
Kokesh: On ethical grounds, I would refuse to fix something that is being used to do something unethical. When you understand what government is, being asked to fix it is like being asked to load a gun for a bank robber.