Monday, October 03, 2016

Putting "the Aleppo moment" into context

Hey, person that's been duped into thinking Johnson's "Aleppo" moment is a big deal, let's chat.

I'm going to take a wild guess and say you didn't actually see the Morning Joe episode where he made the "Aleppo gaffe". If you did, you would have seen Johnson give a completely cogent policy stance on Syria. But more importantly, right after that segment, Joe Scarborough had on Christopher Hill, the former U.S. ambassador to Iraq. While bashing Johnson for his gaffe, it became apparent that Hill himself didn't know where Aleppo is, when he claimed it was "the capital of ISIS".

This is a man whose career had him deeply involved in Middle Eastern politics, and who Scarborough invited on the show to be a subject matter expert. Hill even started off his rant by saying he didn't expect everyone to have the depth of knowledge that an insider like him has. And after all the exasperated outrage he directed at Johnson, Scarborough didn't bat an eye when Hill made the same mistake. Likely because he didn't even notice.

You're not aware of that, or of Johnson's actual position on Syria, because there's a clear establishment bias in the media most people consume. It's predisposed to marginalize outsiders whenever they get the chance, especially when a third-party is threatening the interests of one of the major parties. Johnson's "aw shucks" personality, coupled with his habit of actually owning up to his mistakes, plays right into this narrative that's being pushed about him.

Details can be found here: Media and pundits don’t know what Aleppo is, but they try to explain it to Gary Johnson.

If you're curious about Johnson's actual policy positions, I suggest listening to his appearance on Tom Ashbrook's program On Point, or reading his interview with the L.A. Times.

Gary Johnson On What It Means To Be A Libertarian In 2016

This past August, Gary Johnson made an appearance on Tom Ashbrook's program On Point. If you're curious about Johnson's policy positions, it's definitely worth a listen. It doesn't look like you can skip around if you stream it from the website, but you can download an MP3 of the interview if you click the small icon under the play button.


07:07 - An overview of Johnson's positions

10:06 - What was your role at Cannabis Sativa Inc,, how do you see that in the context of American commerce, law, and culture?

12:27 - Gary Johnson's critique of Clinton's interventionist foreign policy

14:29 - Are you a fringe candidate?

15:26 - What would you do with the U.S. military?

17:08 - What would you do with the overall military budget?

18:51 - Isn't a consumption tax highly regressive?

19:49 - Why do you support free-trade?

21:33 - Do you want to get rid of social security?

22:53 - What want to cut spending by 20%. What are you going to cut?

24:54 - Can you expand on your environmental policy?

26:26 - How aggressive do you want the Federal Government to be to address Global Warming?

27:15 - What's your position on gun control?

30:58 - What's the core of your critique against Clinton?

32:35 - How would you downsize the Federal Bureaucracy?

34:55 - We see capitalism failing in front of our eyes. Why do you support it?

40:00 - Will you be on the ballot in all 50 states?

40:56 - What's the ultimate impact of your candidacy on this race?

41:42 - If it became clear you can't win, would you endorse Clinton?

CNN Libertarian Town Hall with Gary Johnson Bill Weld 3/8/2016


2:28 What do you think you need to gain momentum [in the polls]

7:27 How do you see where America's at?

9:15 Gov Johnson, you described Clinton as beholden. Who is she beholden to?

11:20 Gov Weld, do you still think Trump is a "huckster"?

13:20 What is your view on the threat of Islamic terrorism, and how do you keep our citizens safe while downsizing our military force numbers?

18:37 Do you think civilians in the US should be allowed to purchase and own semi-automatic weapons?

19:46 What is your response to the idea that a third party vote is a "wasted vote"?

21:04 Who has been the biggest inspiration for your views, and how has this person influenced you?

22:50 Could you elaborate on the type of judicial philosophy you'd want in a future Supreme Court Justice?

24:30 What do you both believe is the role of government is in regulating both religious freedom and civil liberties?

29:46 What steps will you take our nations youth will be educated on the risk of high potency pot, and if you'll support potency limits on all forms of marijuana

34:04 You intend to eliminate the Common Core standards as well as the Department of Education. What plan does your administration have to insure children in all states have access to high quality education

36:46: Cooper asks them to weigh in on the knife attack in London

38:40 How are you similar to Bernie Sanders, and what would you say to win Sanders fans' votes.

40:29 How do you compete against the much higher fund raising numbers of Trump and Clinton?

42:26 I'm a Republican Muslim American Veteran. I'm not voting for Trump or Clinton. Why are you a better choice for someone like me?

45:12 As a white man in America, how do you feel about the Black Lives Matters movement?

47:10 Do you think Clinton should have been prosecuted for mishandling State Dept emails?

49:25 What do you think about hardline libertarian policies like decriminalizing prostitution?

51:18 Do you believe the government has a responsibility to fight the obesity epidemic?