Thursday, March 08, 2012

Rand Paul Votes In Favor of Sanctions on Iran

Last week I posted an article about Ron and Rand Paul and why a lot of conservatives seem to like Rand, but won’t vote for Ron for President.  The news about Rand’s recent vote on sanctions on Iran may be a very revealing answer to the question.

Before I get to Rand’s answer, let’s look at Ron’s position on the issue.  I don’t want to put words into his mouth, but I know he considers sanctions to be an act of war.  (And therefore they would only be appropriate if war were officially declared.)  Consider two typical businesses, one in America and one in Iran.  Imposing sanctions would prevent these two businesses from engaging in commerce.  Even though Iran may have wicked leadership, to cite that as a justification for sanctions (or war) would be a case of the pot calling the kettle black (consider who our President is).  What if a business in Iran doesn’t subscribe to the agenda of the leadership of its country?  Why should they be punished for what someone else did?  There are actually some Christians in Iran who haven’t yet been killed.  In general, if you deprive two people from engaging in legitimate commerce, then you are depriving them of liberty.  I realize that there could be extenuating circumstances in which exceptions could apply (i.e. if the business in Iran would be required to pay taxes that would go to support terrorism or other criminal activities).  But just because Iran may get a nuclear weapon, does not justify such extreme measures.  The basic principle is to allow as much liberty as possible without supporting an obvious suppression of it in another case.  One tenet of my political philosophy is that nothing should be against the law unless you can prove from the Bible that it is sin.

Rand said that he would not support a war against Iran because it would rally the Iranian people against the United States.  He also said that we would not be able to afford it.  He said that innocents would be harmed.  But sanctions would also rally the Iranian people against America.  And any sanctions would be meaningless unless we used force to enforce it.  This would also cost a lot of money.  And innocents would be harmed because they would be deprived of the liberty of engaging in commerce as I described above.  All these negative effects could in fact lead to a war which Rand says he is against.

So that is why I conclude that sanctions on Iran are not good unless they actually attack the United States and we formally declare war on them.

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