Click to see preamble.

   

 
DECEMBER 11, 2022

WE THE PEOPLE RADIO

Hour 1  "If Putin Wants a Cold War, the World Should Give Him One" WE THE PEOPLE RADIO

with Francis Rooney

       
Hour 2  "Climate Conference Report" WE THE PEOPLE RADIO

with Debbie Bacigalupi

Hour 1

"If Putin Wants a Cold War, the World Should Give Him One"

By Former Rep. Francis Rooney (R-Fla.), opinion contributor — 03/08/22 02:30 PM EST

authorAbout Francis Rooney

Francis Rooney is an American politician and diplomat who was the U.S. Representative for Florida's 19th congressional district from 2017 to 2021 in the Republcian caucus. He served as United States Ambassador to the Holy See under George W. Bush from 2005–2008. He is Chairman of Rooney Holdings, Inc.

In his book, THE GLOBAL VATICAN, Ambassador Rooney provides an unprecedented inside look at the Catholic Church, its role in world politics and diplomacy, and the extraordinary relationship between the United States and the Holy See.

Ambassador Rooney serves as a member of the Advisory Board of the Panama Canal Authority, a member of the Council of  American Ambassadors, and a Trustee of the Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress. He is a graduate of Georgetown University and Georgetown University Law Center. He also has Honorary Degrees from the University of Notre Dame and the University of Dallas.

"If Putin Wants a Cold War, the World Should Give Him One"

The views expressed by contributors are their own and not the view of The Hill

An unprovoked but not unanticipated war rages in the Ukraine. It is a war entirely of Vladimir Putin’s making. Despite his delusional “justifications” about protecting Russian borders and guarding against having a NATO member as a neighbor, the whole world understands that this is a power play to reconstitute the former Soviet Union. If Putin wants to return to a time when the USSR existed, then the world, led by the United States and Europe, should give it to him. We can resurrect the containment doctrine of George Kennan and Dean Acheson, and isolate Russia.  

While the sanctions the United States and European Union are imposing now are good starting points, more significant actions are called for. Unfortunately, Russia’s economy and the Russian people will pay for Putin’s madness. 

Beginning in 1947 and continuing until 1989, the Truman Doctrine (influenced by Kennan and Acheson) contained the Soviet Union. Containment limited its expansion (and the expansion of puppet regimes) and created an arms race and an isolated economy that eventually led to their demise, the fall of the Berlin Wall and disintegration of the USSR. 

A modern-day revival of containment would be more economic than military. The United States can eliminate the ability for U.S. based companies to do any business with Russia, stop all oil imports from Russia, and block completion of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. Some of this is in the works right now. Our NATO allies need to join in. We should refuse Russia access to our airspace and to internet-based ticketing and reservation systems. Most of the Aeroflot fleet is presently comprised of Boeing and Airbus aircraft, which gives us the ability to cut off Russian access to parts and maintenance. 

Except for China, Iran and India, the international community has largely been united in applying sanctions to Russia and in going after the Russian oligarchs’ assets. The FOPs, “Friends of Putin”, are under the microscope. In addition to freezing bank accounts, several oligarchs have had their multi-million-dollar yachts seized and their private jets grounded, and many mansions in London, Lake Como and the South of France are being investigated. 

We must go further by blocking Russian access to the Swift Banking System, seizing assets of Putin personally, and banning Russia from all sporting competitions - a move which, while seemingly small, will aid in diminishing Putin’s popularity back home. A Putin who is unpopular at home, combined with unhappy oligarchs who fear the loss of their personal, ill-gotten fortunes, is a combination that could lead to a change in Russian leadership in time to save what remnants of freedom remain in their country. 

As we contain and cut off the Russian government from the rest of the world, we should simultaneously increase the free flow of information to the people there. Internet access, social media contacts, and all other means of providing real information to combat government propaganda should be supported. Access to information has always aided the spread of freedom and democracy. The Russian people deserve to have that opportunity. Radio Free Europe was a great success in the Cold War and now the Agency for Global Media can replicate this in Russia the way they are doing it in Iran right now. All of these actions must continue well past the Ukraine conflict, and until Russia returns to post-Cold War reforms and accepts the sovereignty of the Baltic states as well as Ukraine. 

The United States is at a crossroads, and it is critical that we show strength and skill in thwarting Russia’s aggression. What we do today with respect to Russia will be closely watched by China, as it eyes a takeover of Taiwan, as well as Iran and the other rogue nations of the world. It is time for the United States to lead as it always has, on the basis of freedom and human rights and opposing authoritarian oppression. 

Francis Rooneywas a Republican member of the U.S. House of Representatives, representing Florida's 19th District from 2017-2021. He also served as the U.S. Ambassador to the Holy See from 2005 until 2008. 

Book:
bookFrom the centuries-long prejudices against Catholics in America, to the efforts of Fascism, Communism and modern terrorist organizations to “break the cross and spill the wine,” this book brings to life the Catholic Church’s role in world history, particularly in the realm of diplomacy. Former U.S. ambassador to the Holy See Francis Rooney provides a comprehensive guide to the remarkable path the Vatican has navigated to the present day, and a first-person account of what that path looks and feels like from an American diplomat whose experience lent him the ultimate insider’s perspective. Part memoir, part historical lesson, The Global Vatican captures the braided nature of religious and political power and the complexities, battles, and future prospects for the relationship between the Holy See and the United States as both face challenges old and new.

Click to purchase book

THE GLOBAL VATICAN  
AN INSIDE LOOK AT THE CATHOLIC CHURCH, WORLD POLITICS,
AND THE EXTRAORDINARY RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND THE HOLY SEE
By Ambassador Francis Rooney
Washington, DC—During a period of immense change and challenge for the United States, the Catholic Church, and the world, Francis Rooney served as U.S. Ambassador to the Holy See, the governing body of the Catholic Church, under George W. Bush from 2005 to 2008. His new book captures the interwoven nature of religious and political power and the complexities, battles, and future prospects for the relationship between the Holy See and the United States as both face challenges old and new.

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In THE GLOBAL VATICAN (Rowman & Littlefield, November 2013), Ambassador Francis Rooney provides an unprecedented inside look at the Catholic Church, its role in world politics and diplomacy, and the extraordinary relationship between the United States and the Holy See. He argues that U.S. foreign policy has much to gain from its relationship with the Holy See, and vice versa. No institution on earth has both the international stature and the global reach of the Holy See—the “soft power” of moral influence and authority to promote religious freedom, human liberties, and related values that Americans and our allies uphold worldwide.

The timing of Francis Rooney’s assignment to the Holy See came at a momentous period for both America and the Catholic Church. America was four years out from 9/11 and locked in difficult wars in two countries, including a conflict in Iraq—of which the Holy See had strongly and vocally disapproved. The Bush Administration was making progress in bringing democracy, freedom, and stability to Iraq and Afghanistan, but it was difficult on both fronts. And the Catholic Church had its own challenges—the first of these facing Pope Benedict XVI was succeeding the beloved Pope John Paul II. A decline of active participation and growing secularization in much of the Western world threatened the Church at the same time that the abuse scandal continued to expand. Still, the Church remained a powerful moral voice in the world, and Rooney worked with the Holy See to achieve as much diplomatic alignment as possible on crucial issues.

As Francis Rooney argues, the United States and the Holy See remain two of the most significant institutions in world history, one a beacon of democracy and progress, the other a sanctum of faith and allegiance to timeless principles. Despite these differences between the first modern democracy and the longest surviving Western monarchy, Rooney maintains that both were founded on the idea that “human persons” possess inalienable natural rights granted by God. This had been a revolutionary concept when the Catholic Church embraced it 2,000 years ago, and was equally revolutionary when the Declaration of Independence stated it 1,800 years later.

Given our mutual respect for human rights, it seems obvious that America and the Catholic Church would be natural friends and collaborators in world affairs. But this wasn’t the case for nearly 200 years of American history. As THE GLOBAL VATICAN demonstrates, both the United States and the Holy See had to overcome deeply held convictions and perceptions—entrenched anti-Catholicism on the part of Americans; antidemocratic, monarchical reflexes on the part of the Holy See. President Reagan established full diplomatic relations with the Holy See in 1984 because, among other reasons, he realized that he could have no better partner than Pope John Paul II in the fight against communism—and he was right. Since the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Holy See has continued to play a crucial role as a diplomatic force while maintaining formal relations with 179 countries—a number surpassed only by the United States.
The Church is one of the leading advocates and providers for the poor in the world, fights against the scourge of human trafficking, and advances the cause of human dignity and rights more than any other organization in the world. The Holy See also plays a significant role in pursuing diplomatic solutions to international predicaments, whether, for example, promoting peace between Israel and Palestine, helping end the civil war in Lebanon, or helping to secure the release of nearly one hundred political prisoners from Cuba in 2010.

Francis Rooney contends in THE GLOBAL VATICAN that American values and foreign policy goals can be advanced in many parts of the world, including the Middle East, China, Latin America, Cuba, and Africa, through closer diplomatic ties with the Holy See. He notes that the past few years have seen cordial but cooling relations as President Obama has visited the Vatican just once since taking office, and the Obama Administration has demonstrated little more than a perfunctory interest in the Holy See’s diplomatic role in the world. This is a regrettable lost opportunity.

The power and influence of the Holy See is often underestimated. A benevolent monarchy tucked into a corner of a modern democracy, the Holy See is at once a universally recognized sovereign—representing more than a billion people (one seventh of the world’s population)—and the civil government of the smallest nation-state on earth. It has no military and only a negligible economy, but it has greater reach and influence than most nations. It’s not simply the number or variety of people that the Holy See represents that gives it relevance; it’s also the moral influence of the Church, which is still considerable despite secularization and scandals.

As THE GLOBAL VATICAN illustrates, the Holy See advocates powerfully for morality in the lives of both Catholics and non-Catholics, and in both individuals and nations. One may disagree with some of the Church’s positions and yet still recognize the value—the real and practical value—of its insistence that “right” should precede “might” in world affairs. At its core, the Catholic Church is a powerful and unique source of noncoercive “soft power” on the world stage—it moves people to do the right thing by appealing to ideals and shared values, rather than to fear and brute force.

There are limits to the Church’s ability to influence the actions of societies and nations, of course, because it cannot force its will with economic or military leverage. But it is precisely in these failings that its greatness lies—the Church appeals above and beyond might, money, or political power to a deeper recognition in human beings of what is good and right. Ultimately, the Church has power through its consistent defense of enduring principles—it stands for the same thing every day, and in every place.

As the author and historian Hilaire Belloc put it, “the Church is a perpetually defeated thing that always outlives her conquerors.” And Francis Rooney proves that there is much good still to come from the Church, especially in areas where the Holy See and the United States find themselves in alignment.

Ambassador Francis Rooney:
 

“We are entering a dangerous phase of the Ukraine conflict.  A losing, cornered Putin is a risk because of his tactical, and worse, nuclear weapons.”

“The Ukranians are driving them back from so called ‘annexed’ areas.”

“There is no apparent conflict resolution mechanism in place.  The Ukrainians and Russians aren’t talking, and without Western pressure they probably won’t.  We need to develop a forum for discussing conflict reduction and ultimately resolution of the war.”

“Can the United States figure out how to contain any nuclear deployment to tactical weapons or less?  This is reminiscent of the Cuban Missile Crisis, but we now have a divided nation.  There is divided opinion on whether to keep funding Ukraine at all.  In one sense we abetted Putin’s ambitions by our inaction after the Crimea invasion.  President Obama even joked about it.  Now the joke is on him, and more importantly, our national security.”
###

Ambassador Francis Rooney represented Florida’s 19th Congressional District in the United States House of Representatives from 2017 to 2021.  From 2005 to 2008 he served as the United States Ambassador to the Holy See, appointed by President George W. Bush and subsequently wrote a book about diplomacy and the US-Holy See relationship titled The Global Vatican.

As further background, I’ve included Ambassador Francis Rooney’s op-ed below that he wrote at the beginning of the war, and I hope we can arrange for him to come on the show…

Best regards,

Stephen

If Putin wants a Cold War, the world should give him one 

By Former Rep. Francis Rooney (R-Fla.), opinion contributor — 03/08/22 02:30 PM EST

The views expressed by contributors are their own and not the view of The Hill


An unprovoked but not unanticipated war rages in the Ukraine. It is a war entirely of Vladimir Putin’s making. Despite his delusional “justifications” about protecting Russian borders and guarding against having a NATO member as a neighbor, the whole world understands that this is a power play to reconstitute the former Soviet Union. If Putin wants to return to a time when the USSR existed, then the world, led by the United States and Europe, should give it to him. We can resurrect the containment doctrine of George Kennan and Dean Acheson, and isolate Russia.  

While the sanctions the United States and European Union are imposing now are good starting points, more significant actions are called for. Unfortunately, Russia’s economy and the Russian people will pay for Putin’s madness. 

Beginning in 1947 and continuing until 1989, the Truman Doctrine (influenced by Kennan and Acheson) contained the Soviet Union. Containment limited its expansion (and the expansion of puppet regimes) and created an arms race and an isolated economy that eventually led to their demise, the fall of the Berlin Wall and disintegration of the USSR. 

A modern-day revival of containment would be more economic than military. The United States can eliminate the ability for U.S. based companies to do any business with Russia, stop all oil imports from Russia, and block completion of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. Some of this is in the works right now. Our NATO allies need to join in. We should refuse Russia access to our airspace and to internet-based ticketing and reservation systems. Most of the Aeroflot fleet is presently comprised of Boeing and Airbus aircraft, which gives us the ability to cut off Russian access to parts and maintenance. 

Except for China, Iran and India, the international community has largely been united in applying sanctions to Russia and in going after the Russian oligarchs’ assets. The FOPs, “Friends of Putin”, are under the microscope. In addition to freezing bank accounts, several oligarchs have had their multi-million-dollar yachts seized and their private jets grounded, and many mansions in London, Lake Como and the South of France are being investigated. 

We must go further by blocking Russian access to the Swift Banking System, seizing assets of Putin personally, and banning Russia from all sporting competitions - a move which, while seemingly small, will aid in diminishing Putin’s popularity back home. A Putin who is unpopular at home, combined with unhappy oligarchs who fear the loss of their personal, ill-gotten fortunes, is a combination that could lead to a change in Russian leadership in time to save what remnants of freedom remain in their country. 

As we contain and cut off the Russian government from the rest of the world, we should simultaneously increase the free flow of information to the people there. Internet access, social media contacts, and all other means of providing real information to combat government propaganda should be supported. Access to information has always aided the spread of freedom and democracy. The Russian people deserve to have that opportunity. Radio Free Europe was a great success in the Cold War and now the Agency for Global Media can replicate this in Russia the way they are doing it in Iran right now. All of these actions must continue well past the Ukraine conflict, and until Russia returns to post-Cold War reforms and accepts the sovereignty of the Baltic states as well as Ukraine. 

The United States is at a crossroads, and it is critical that we show strength and skill in thwarting Russia’s aggression. What we do today with respect to Russia will be closely watched by China, as it eyes a takeover of Taiwan, as well as Iran and the other rogue nations of the world. It is time for the United States to lead as it always has, on the basis of freedom and human rights and opposing authoritarian oppression. 

Francis Rooney was a Republican member of the U.S. House of Representatives, representing Florida's 19th District from 2017-2021. He also served as the U.S. Ambassador to the Holy See from 2005 until 2008. 

 

"Climate Conference Report"

with Debbie Bacigalupi              WE THE PEOPLE RADIO

Debbie Bacigalupi was born in Redding, CA and is a 6th generation Californian. Her family is 5th generation cattle ranchers and farmers in Siskiyou County. It's because of the attack on rural America and the effect on her family that she decided to jump into the 2012 Congressional race. A former US House of Representatives 2012 Republican Candidate for California’s District 14, she lost to an incumbent, career politician in an 80% registered Democratic Bay Area district. Debbie has worked as a Corporate Event Planner for Google and YouTube. Currently, she is a biotech consultant and speaker. As a speaker for private property rights and now a key player on an Anti-Agenda 21 task force group, Debbie is known for a lively presentation and has been a keynote and expert panelists throughout the United States. Topics include Agenda 21, private property, water rights, the attack on rural America, the threat to farmers, ranchers, dams and water supply, overregulation, government corruption, the attack on the middle class, freedom, and liberty. Debbie graduated Summa Cum Laude with a BS in Business Management, has her Masters in Business Management, is a Certified Sommelier, and a Certified Event Planner. She currently lives in San Carlos, CA where she is fighting the One Bay Area Plan, Grand Blvd Initiative, Regionalism, Transit Villages and much more.

Debbie's business: dbacigalupi.myrandf.biz

Links we discussed:

www.SCWildlands.org (monument info)

Just a few links Debbie thought would make you crazy:
  • https://www.morganhcurtis.com/  "I support people with inherited wealth to align their resources with their social justice values — so that resources can flow to create the world we’d love to see."
  • https://resourcegeneration.org/  "Resource Generation is a multiracial membership community of young people (18-35) with wealth and/or class privilege committed to the equitable distribution of wealth, land, and power."
  • https://resourcegeneration.org/start-your-journey/quiz/ CLASS PRIVILEGE QUIZ (prepare to throw up)
  • https://upsidefoods.com/our-impact/  In a nutshell, our production process starts by taking a sample of primary cells from a chicken or fertilized egg. From this sample, our team selects ideal cells for developing a commercial cell line. The winning cells are chosen based on their ability to produce high-quality meat and grow predictably and consistently. This process is called immortalization. Once a cell line is established, we're able to draw from it for years - if not decades - to come, reducing the need to take additional cell samples from animals.

  • https://thenewamerican.com/bill-maher-to-young-i-wont-sacrifice-for-climate-change-until-humans-do-it-as-a-group/  Maher said he didn’t want to be the only one making sacrifices to save the planet, something needs to be done “as a group of humans” for the problem to be solved, but it’s been all talk and no action.