As usual, the new January issue of TAC has many excellent articles and columns that I recommend to everyone. There were a couple of these that especially caught my attention. Bill Kauffman writes on Bob La Follette and Bob Dylan in the context of Upper Midwestern antiwar activism, and bids adieu to outgoing Wisconsin Sen. Feingold. On a related topic, Chase Madar explodes the enduring myth of interwar “isolationism” and identifies the political tradition that produced many of the critics of U.S. intervention overseas:
One of the ironies of this legend is that those interwar senators retrospectively tagged as isolationists—known in their time as “Peace Progressives”—were among the most outward-looking politicians of their era. The Peace Progressives were mostly Western and Midwestern Republicans, most prominent among them Robert La Follette of Wisconsin, William Borah (“The Lion of Idaho”), and Hiram Johnson of California. They successfully rolled back longstanding U.S. military occupations in the Caribbean and Central America, and their efforts arguably averted war with Mexico in the 1920s. Borah took the lead in forging multilateral arms-reduction treaties with Great Britain and Japan.
Read the entire article. Incidentally, I have also observed many, many times how meaningless and untrue the conventional story of American “isolationism” is. As Ron Paul has said, if there are any isolationists around today it is those who wish to sanction, penalize, and attack other countries who deserve the name.