Friday, May 4, 2012

Down the Memory Hole with Cato

A friend has pointed me in the direction of some Cato web pages that have been erased and others that have been restructured. However, thanks to the Wayback machine, those web pages have been archived, beyond the delete buttons of the Cato crew. What has Cato been deleting and restructuring? Some awfully, pro-war commentary. Hmm. Cato in its battle against the Koch brothers is claiming to have always been anti-war, so it appears they have used the internet version of a date rape drug and hit the delete button. But the Wayback machine never forgets, just as a woman given a date rape drug never forgets the emptiness of the hours seemingly ripped out of her brain.

Here's Cato's Tom Palmer attacking a group that is not only anti-war, but also anti-bankster. It can only now be found at the Wayback machine:
 D.C. is currently full of the ragtag remnants of the American left. They're protesting against, um, let me check the list: Israeli occupation of the West Bank; the existence of Israel; the U.S. war against the Al Qaeda and the Taliban; IMF and World Bank policies (not that they know what they are); globalization; trade; and badness generally. I could not resist a little argument with a number of the unpleasant little critters in the local Chipotle burrito bar on Saturday. 
And via the WayBack machine, this looks like Cato support for Guantanamo:
 The primary objective of the Bush administration should not be bin Laden's trial before an international tribunal, but the crushing defeat of him and his organization. The administration would have great leeway in that regard should it request and receive a congressional declaration of war against bin Laden and his terror network. According to long-established rules of war, enemies who do not wear uniforms, hide their weapons from view, and act as saboteurs are considered "illegal combatants." Illegal combatants are not entitled to prisoner of war status under the Geneva Conventions, are not protected by the law of war, and are subject to summary execution upon detection. When captured, such infiltrators are not entitled to be tried before civilian courts, court-martial panels, or international tribunals based on the Nuremberg model, but must instead face specially organized military commissions.
Then the WayBack machine records David Boaz supporting air strikes in Afghanistan, the removal of the Taliban, a call for a new bomber and a vigorous, determined  government:
Go after Al Qaeda and the Taliban. The air strikes are a good beginning, but we must insist that Afghanistan hand Osama bin Laden and his lieutenants over. Failing that, we must go into Afghanistan to find them. It won’t be an easy task; the Soviet Union learned that in a nightmare decade. But this is the sort of mission that our Special Forces train for. They’ll find bin Laden.

Also, the Taliban rulers have made clear that they are sponsors of bin Laden and his wave of terrorism. So, one of our goals must be the removal of the Taliban from power...

 Build a new bomber. In conflicts such as the one we’re entering, the United States may find air bases close to the fighting unavailable or vulnerable to enemy attack—especially by ballistic missiles. Yet the U.S. Air Force is investing billions of dollars in two new types of tactical fighter aircraft that require access to such bases. In contrast, the Air Force will not begin research and development on a new long-range bomber until 2013 and will not begin producing the aircraft until 2034. Heavy bombers can carry heavier payloads over much longer ranges than can fighters and can operate from less-vulnerable bases in theaters that are farther away from the fighting or even from bases in the United States. No matter what type of foreign policy the United States adopts in the future, it will need the ability to project power abroad. It’s time to start developing a new bomber...

Libertarians usually enter public debates to call for restrictions on government activity. In the wake of September 11, we have all been reminded of the real purpose of government: to protect our life, liberty, and property from violence. This would be a good time for the federal government to do its job with vigor and determination.
Oh yeah, a real principled bunch, I'll remember this the next time the TSA gropes me with vigor and determination. And all this is before my friend finishes investigating other kinds of deletions.


  1. This is utter nonsense. The first item is from Tom Palmer's personal site, so Cato would have no part in retaining or deleting that piece.

    But more to the point, the other two pieces are not available thanks to the power of the Wayback machine. They were never deleted by Cato. Here they are, still on their site.

    Unless by "restructured" you mean, they redesigned their website.

    Weak, sir. Very weak.

    1. And for what it's worth, the Tom Palmer post hasn't been deleted either. It's still there, too.

      Your "friend" apparently doesn't know much about the internet. Finding all of these "deleted" pieces on their respective sites, still there for everyone to see without bothering with the Wayback machine, took about 2 minutes.

    2. Yeah, once you have the story it doesn't take anytime at all to find the respective sites. In fact, you are very slow if it took you two minures.

  2. I stand corrected the first item must have been personally stuck down the memory hole by Tom Palmer, himself!

    As for the other two items, I guess it wasn't as bad as a date rape drug. It appears, they were just moved around while conscious. Though the Wayback machine archive clearly shows that for whatever reason the links were changed, at least on the first of these two. A google search seems to support this point, with a new link just created this year,

    However, despite the moving Cato pieces, the point still stands that Palmer dissed on a anti-bankster, anti-war group. Gary Dempsey seems to have supported Guantanamo type operation and David Boaz supported new bombers, the removal of the Taliban from power,, attacks on Afghanistan and a government that does its "job with vigor and determination".

    Again, the moving of the locations of the web sites does not seem to be anywhere near as serious as the "date rape drug" analogy I used. Slipping a date rape drug into a drink is much more serious.

    1. It would appear that the links were changed for SEO reasons, in fact making them more likely to be found should anyone be searching for them. Ironic.

      But yes, all this is rather banal compared to a date rape drug scandal. Which we are still waiting for. I'm afraid unsupported date rape scandal hinting is rather more tedious than even not-deleted web pages.


  3. Lame, Bobby.

    You all need to give it a rest.

    Can't you numskulls just be happy that Palmer in 5 years is going to be 300 pounds mumbling "'Gooosh Mongu itztu.' That's Martian for 'free trade'" to his 17 cats while donning a Marlon Brando Dr. Moreau mu-mu?

  4. Wait, supporting intervention in Afghanistan after 9/11 makes one an unprincipled libertarian?

    So Ron Paul is an unprincipled libertarian?

    1. Paul didn't support going after the Taliban. He also certainly didn't support development of new aircraft to prosecute this kind of war.

    2. Oh, really?

      Paul voted "That the President is authorized to use all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored such organizations or persons, in order to prevent any future acts of international terrorism against the United States by such nations, organizations or persons."

      Maybe it went down your memory hole that the Taliban harbored bin Laden and al Qaeda.

  5. This is why you Bob, Lew Rockwell, and others have to get off this conspiracy theory mindset. Ever since about 2008 or 2009 Lew has gone off into looney land with the non-stop conspiracy theories. What was once an excellent website has degenerated into fantasy land more and more.

    I love you guys but please slow down with the conspiracy mindset. It's almost paranoid. No I don't discount all conspiracies libertarians like Lew are going too far with it.

  6. "Wait, supporting intervention in Afghanistan after 9/11 makes one an unprincipled libertarian?"

    Yes, because you are causing all sorts of collateral damage, applying force and retribution in unrelated areas. Why the call for heavy bombers and fighters and armament for a rag tag group of terrorists?

    "So Ron Paul is an unprincipled libertarian?"

    Ron Paul called for using the Letter of Marque and Reprisal to capture Bin Laden, not war, not regime change, not bombing, not occupation. Letters of Marque and Reprisal is in fact, the only appropriate instrument in situations like these.

    1. The issue is whether the above makes Boaz unprincipled. Show me where in the above Boaz advocates regime change and occupation.

      Ron Paul also supported the bombing.

      You can't have your cake and eat it too. This entire post is bullshit.

    2. Seeing how his proposal to use the Letter of Marque and Reprisal did not gain any traction, Ron Paul voted to go into Afghanistan *in order* to capture Bin Laden, as he repeatedly has clarified, he did not "support the bombing"

      "Show me where in the above Boaz advocates regime change and occupation."
      -> Boaz: "So, one of our goals must be the removal of the Taliban from power."

      Unprincipled: initiating force against those who have not aggressed against you, which we clearly see. Many tribal people and villages identify themselves as part of the "Taliban" but as primitive as they are, they are in no way co-conspirators with Bin Laden or the 9/11 plot.

      Also unprincipled is forcing tax payers to waste money on the entire military buildup, to build long range bombers to carry heavy payloads and fighters--as he advocated--to capture a bunch of ragtag guys who could easily hide in the mountains (again, not to mention collateral damage)

      The only where he was right i.e. principled, is advocating using Special Forces to find Bin Laden