Hornberger's Blog

Hornberger's Blog is a daily libertarian blog written by Jacob G. Hornberger, founder and president of FFF.
Here's the RSS feed or subscribe to our FFF Email Update to receive Hornberger’s Blog daily.

In Search of Monsters to Support


On July 4, 1821, U.S. Secretary of State John Quincy Adams delivered a speech to the U.S. House of Representatives in which he observed that America was founded on principles of liberty and limited government that precluded our nation from going abroad “in search of monsters to destroy.” The idea was that although people in different parts of the world might be suffering under the yolk of brutal and monstrous dictators, it would not be the role of the U.S. government to send its troops abroad to save them.

While President Obama continues his dithering toward events in Egypt, one thing remains clear: Obama has no intention of turning off the spigot of U.S. foreign aid to the Egyptian brutes, including Egypt’s dictator Hosni Mubarak and his right-hand henchman Omar Suleiman, Egypt’s torturer-in-chief whom Mubarak recently elevated to the vice presidency. Suleiman, you will recall, is the man who headed up Egypt’s torture program and was, in fact, the CIA’s partner in the U.S. government’s rendition-torture program, before Mubarak made him vice-president.

Obama’s continuation of billions of dollars of U.S. foreign aid to the Egyptian dictatorship reflects how far the statists have plunged America in terms of moral principles. Neither Adams nor any of America’s Founding Fathers could have ever imagined that our nation would be converted into one that went abroad not only in search of monsters to destroy but also monsters to support.

The statists cry, “We have to continue supporting the monsters with U.S. taxpayer money because ‘our interests’ are at stake.” Apparently they are referring to such things as “our dependence on foreign oil” or the “safety of Israel.”

Do the ends ever justify the employment of immoral means? Indeed, has God actually created a universe in which it is moral to sacrifice the lives, limbs, and liberty of innocent people for the sake of political goals? If an end depends on the employment of immoral means, then that’s the time to either question the end or come up with moral means to achieve the end. I submit that God has created a consistent universe — one in which bad means beget bad ends, in which good ends can be achieved with moral means, and in which immoral means can never be justified.

For the last two weeks, the rebellion of the Egyptian people against the monsters who have oppressed them for 30 years has shined the light on the U.S. government’s support of monsters. The tyrannical government that the Egyptian people are trying to topple is one whose power has been built up over the past three decades with U.S. taxpayer money, provided by the U.S. government, with the support of both conservative and liberal statists.

The arbitrary arrests in the middle of the night. The torture chambers, among the world’s most gruesome. The torturers, who are among the finest and most experienced in the world. The extra-judicial executions. All bought, paid for, and maintained with U.S. foreign aid, aid that Obama intends to continue.

While Obama and his people continue their flip-flops, their hand-wringing, their posturing, and their straddling over Egypt, it’s time for us to restore a sense of morality to our nation. Turn off the spigot to the Egyptian monsters, Mr. President. Do it now and do permanently. Don’t set conditions. Don’t negotiate. Just end it. Better yet, turn off the foreign aid spigot to every regime in the world, monstrous or not.

The time has come to restore our nation’s founding principles. It’s time that America stopped going abroad in search of monsters to destroy and monsters to support.

This post was written by:

Jacob G. Hornberger is founder and president of The Future of Freedom Foundation. He was born and raised in Laredo, Texas, and received his B.A. in economics from Virginia Military Institute and his law degree from the University of Texas. He was a trial attorney for twelve years in Texas. He also was an adjunct professor at the University of Dallas, where he taught law and economics. In 1987, Mr. Hornberger left the practice of law to become director of programs at the Foundation for Economic Education. He has advanced freedom and free markets on talk-radio stations all across the country as well as on Fox News’ Neil Cavuto and Greta van Susteren shows and he appeared as a regular commentator on Judge Andrew Napolitano’s show Freedom Watch. View these interviews at LewRockwell.com and from Full Context. Send him email.