Thursday, January 10, 2008

Ron Paul Loses His Luster

What Does It Tell Us About Ron's Ability To Run The Nation, If He Can't Even Run A Newsletter Properly?

Introduction: As Jamie Kilstein has pointed out over at, it would be shocking if Ron Paul supporters realized he is an anti-abortion rights, anti-evolution wackjob, and the equally shocking fact that he's a Republican who somehow has a few ideas that don't suck (you know, like legalizing drugs, which is sadly just about all most Paulies know about him), doesn't mean that he's humanity's savior.

As Kilstein put it, "Seriously, Ron Paul-9/11 truthers, I know you're mad at your parents (even though they still send you money), but have you looked at Ron Paul's record? He is fucking crazy! For people with so much goddamn time on their hands, you could fucking Google search a speech, or two. For fuck's sake!"

But on a more serious note...

Mother Jones Magazine's MoJo Blog by Josh Harkinson

With results in from New Hampshire, the wild and pervasive fantasies surrounding the Paul campaign should finally be laid to rest. For months Paul supporters have swamped the comments section of this and pretty much every other major blog with the idea that his poll numbers were vastly underreported, either due to a media conspiracy, or the fact that his young, cell-phone-wielding supporters weren't counted in typical phone polls. I've pointed out that Dean supporters made pretty much the same, baseless case in 2004, and it's now clear that nothing has changed since then: In Iowa, Paul won 10 percent of the vote (phone polls had given him 9 percent) and in New Hampshire he won 7.6 percent (phone polls had given him 6 to 10 percent). In short, the Ron Paul myth should be about as dead as the decomposed remains of Guy Fawkes.

Of course, if New Hampshire voters hadn't written him off, Paul would have self-destructed anyway. As I pointed out back in mid-November, Paul has too many cozy ties with racists to ever survive the scrutiny heaped on front-runners. Yesterday The New Republic revealed those racist ties to be stronger than anyone realized. The Atlantic (where Andrew Sullivan had endorsed Paul) responded with an apologia arguing that fringe idealists are naturally predisposed to tolerate the repulsive views of those with whom they share shards of common ground. It's an interesting idea that doesn't excuse anything. At the very minimum, Paul was grossly negligent in allowing a newsletter chocked full of racist diatribes to be published for decades under his name.

What worries me the most about Paul's meltdown is not that it will discredit Paul, but that it will discredit some of the more noble elements of the movement that surrounds him. As I noted in my recent feature on Paul, the movement, and not the candidate, is the real revolution. Just look at the way Paul supporters have challenged the Republican orthodoxies on Iraq and the Patriot Act from within the Party.

Coy to the possibility of running on a third-party ticket, Paul told the Washington Post last week that he has "no intention" of mounting an independent bid, but also left the door open, adding: "We'll see if the supporters keep sending the money. But right now, our focus is on Feb. 5th."

An independent Paul bid would certainly be interesting. Maybe it would suck away some anti-war votes from Democrats, or, in the event that Barack Obama ends up as the Democratic nominee, maybe it would suck away some bigot votes from the Republican. Either way, a Paul bid is looking like an increasingly dangerous idea for libertarians. He has carried them into the mainstream like nobody before, but now that they are almost there, is he really the best guy to represent them? At some point, it might be time for the Ron Paul Revolution to say "no" to Dr. No.

~ Josh Harkinson


teehee said...

if a ceo of a company finds his manager went awol and did a lot of retarded shit he must take responsibility publicly for it no matter if he was involved or not.

ron paul was doing a lot of work as an obstetrician and had little time to baby sit the newsletter.

the newsletters were an OBVIOUS fruad because it was not his writinng style OR HIS SIGNATURE.

as far as legalizing "drugs"
lots of drugs are legalized. just not the "criminalized" ones.

look into how marijuana became illegal and youll see the retarded justifications made by convincing people that "blacks will think theyre as good as whites" and that "white girls will sleep with colors if they smoke Marijuana" - Henry J Anslinger.

Obama is not what our country needs - he is a wonderful man no doubt - but he does not possess what will or knowledge as to how to reconstruct America to what our forefathers designed her to be.

we need to go back to our roots and take away big governments. this is how we are all going broke and losing our rights little by little.

~~alapoet~~ said...

"Newsletters a fraud"?

That question's not even on the table. Even Ron Paul admits that, YES, they are his newsletters, and YES, they have his name on the masthead and all over them.

If the racist nonsense was confined to one or two newsletters, then one could lend some credence to the idea that "OK, the Good Doctor Paul was off delivering babies and saving nations and didn't have time to read his own newsletter."

But that is not the case. Not even close.

The racists writings were in Dr. Paul's newsletters over a period of YEARS. Is this guy so challenged for time that it takes him more than FIVE YEARS to notice someone is spouting hateful, racist diatribes in a newsletter WITH HIS NAME ON IT?

Well, if so, then he's way too goddamned busy to be President.

old hack said...

Mike Gravel is the best thing t ever happen to the libertarian party. you might want to mention that next time you mention the libertarian party.

☮~alapoet~☠ said...

I tend to agree that Mike Gravel is head and shoulders above anyone the Libertarians have ever run before, but perhaps I draw that conclusion from a different set of assumptions than yourself.

The reason Mike Gravel is a better candidate than they've ever had before is because Gravel is not, at heart, a Libertarian -- he's a liberal Democrat, which means he stands on the OPPOSITE side of the issues from just about any conventional Libertarian.

Mike Gravel, being a liberal Democrat, believes that having tax money available (mostly from corporations and upper income people) and using it for public works such as roads, education, and health care, is a good idea.

That's diametrically opposed, by ANYONE's measure, to the Libertarian stance of diminishing government and "letting the free market take care of itself."

And you know what? I agree with Mike Gravel. The Libertarians are, and have always been, an amalgamation of people with other axes to grind -- such as letting unfettered wealth and corporatism, rather than government, run the country. Never mind that the approach has already been tried and failed miserably (see late 19th Century: robber barons, sweatshops, child labor, environmental despoilation, exploitation of the working class).