One of the reasons I loathe Ron Paul is because he says things that play well with people but has no damned clue what they actually mean. Case in point: His op-ed about Crimea, which USAToday published because they think we should care what a thrice-failed presidential candidate thinks about foreign policy he sees through a black and white lens with no hint of grayscale.
Like, for example, this argle-bargle:
Perhaps the U.S. officials who supported the unconstitutional overthrow of Ukraine's government should refocus their energies on learning our own Constitution, which does not allow the U.S. government to overthrow governments overseas or send a billion dollars to bail out Ukraine and its international creditors.
Though the Obama administration has applied some minimal sanctions on selected Russian and Crimean individuals, neither the U.S. nor the EU can afford significant sanctions against Russia. Global trade provides too much economic benefit to both sides.
So on the one hand, we're not supposed to care about Russia annexing Crimea because who cares which flag flies over that country they violated international law to annex. We're not supposed to care about the Ukrainian military stuck there, and we're supposed to shrug at Putin's obvious opportunism.
But on the other hand, we're supposed to be cognizant of global trade. Got it.
The Ukraine-Crimea situation is complex and difficult. Putin took extreme and unnecessary action with regard to Crimea. That's deserving of an international reaction. It's not a question of what flag flies; it's a question of whether a hamhanded former head of Russia's secret police should be aggressively annexing sovereign territory.
No one should use their vote approving annexation by Russia as indicative of anything other than Putin's fix. No vote ever adds up to 97 percent without some serious help.
Ron Paul is entitled to bloviate as much as he wants, but that doesn't mean it deserves the ink (or pixels) it takes to put it in a national newspaper.
Also? What happened to the "support the president in times of crisis" demand put on us by the Republicans during the runup to the Iraq war? If any liberal dared question Saint Dubya we were burned at the stake as unpatriotic fools. Could we possibly step back from the barrage of criticism long enough to allow President Obama and Secretary Kerry to try some diplomacy?
You'd think Ron Paul would be in favor of that, being the anti-war guy that he is. Instead he'd just like to lob shots across the bow so his boy can get the Republican nomination. His TeaBircher ass ought to be exiled, not exalted.
P.S. Don't even get me started on Mitt Romney, who we all know is running again in 2016. As President Obama said in 2012, he can say whatever about foreign policy, but he's wrong, and even the folks on his own side think so.