VIEWSrn’Tm Liberated; Free at Last!”rnA Talk With Pat Buchananrnby Bill KauffrnanrnPat Buchanan has taken more punches than Chuck Wepner,rnhut unlike the Bayonne Bleeder, Buchanan has a good rightrnhook (or is it now a left?) of his own.rnThe year began with Buchanan defending his feist}’ anti-interventionistrnmanifesto A Republic, Not an Empire; hlot since therndays of Arkansas Sen. William Fulhright, the one good BillrnArkansas has minted, had a major American politician used therne-word. Invited to join the Reform Party by the hirelings of Texasrnpopulist Ross Perot, Buchanan was sandbagged by the Perotistasrnwhen it became clear that, unlike Perot’s 1996 competitor for thernReform nomination, he would not be a sacrificial Lamm.rnBuchanan defeated his principal foe for the Reform endorsement,rntranscendental-meditation apostle John Hagelin, before beingrnlaid low by gall-bladder-related problems.rnBill Kauffman spoke with Buchanan as the convalescent candidaternprepared to hit the campaign trail.rnKAl/FFMAN: Have you tried transcendental meditation forrnthis gall bladder tiling?rnBUCHANAN (Chuckling): Well, it may be better for the stomach.rnK: You get the worst press of any presidential candidate sincernGeorge Wallace in ’68. Wliy?rnB: There are a couple of reasons. One is that we really stand uprnagainst the national media establishment on all issues, not justrnBill Kauffman s books include America First! and F.ver’ Man arnKing, a novel.rna few. Secondly, I’ve been a party to all of the great controversiesrnof our time, and I’ve been on the odier side from the nationalrnpress in all of those controversies: Vietnam, court-orderedrnbusing, the Supreme Court and its decisions on life and prayer.rnI supported the most unpopular war in American history andrnopposed the most popular.rnIn addihon, I’m now challenging not only the liberal Democraticrnestablishment, which I’ve fought all my life, but we’verntaken on also the Republican/conservative establishment. So Irnhave no base of support whatsoever in the national media.rnWhere I find my support is places like Chronicles and MiddlernAmerican News and, to some degree, Human Events and SouthemrnPartisan—which are, it is fair to sav, not in the mainstreamrn(Laughter).rnK: You’re the first presidential candidate in 75 years, since BobrnLa Follette, to try to put together a left-right coalition against involvementrnin foreign wars. Are you still sanguine about the possibilityrnof left-right cooperation, or are you discouraged?rnB: Let’s separate Buchanan from Buchanan’s beliefs and visions.rnWhatever happens to me, the ideas for which we arernfighting right now are going to triumph. The American peoplernare neer again going to send a great army overseas to fight somernbloody war that has no direct impact on the vital interests of thernUnited States. We are an overcommitted nation that has half ofrnthe militar)’ power it had in 1990, but with far more commitmentsrn—from F.astern Eiuope to the Balkans to the PersianrnGulf, even to the Taiwan Straits—than we had at the end of thernCold War.rnThe time is coming when the bankruptcy of U.S. foreign pol-rnNOVEMBER 2000/13rnrnrn