Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Have you been following Ron Paul?


I apologize for my long absence. I have been very busy and also blogging a bit about politics over at my personal blog, where I recently posted excerpts of Washington's and Eisenhower's farewell addresses.

I wondered what has been going on over here and whether any of you had taken an interest in the most interesting candidate of this presidential race in either party. I browsed the last couple weeks of postings and performed a search of the YARGB archives and found no posts at all mentioning him.

Ron Paul is the most different, inspiring and electrifying candidate in the race. His internet-based grassroots organization is the envy of the big-money and also-running campaigns alike, especially within the Republican field. He is the only one of either party with the principled and correct position on the war. He now has more money than 7 of the other candidates combined and has no debt. He is a true fiscal conservative judging by his 20 year voting record and how he husbands campaign resources.

Where is the commentary on this man? Where is the discussion? With the current leading Republican candidate, "None of the above," and strong weaknesses in all the pre-selected front runners, it seems high time we get familiar with the only one who can light the grass roots on fire and bring those "Reagan democrats" back into the tent along with many Independents and most all the Libertarians. Of course, a Ron Paul nomination implies a reform of the party and an unmistakably clear rejection of the "neo-conservative" project in the middle east and elsewhere. At least the choice is clear. No mud here.

I just attended the Young Republican National Convention and I think this party is asleep. If the future of the party is in the hands of these people, we have to work to do. Hillary will win unless Republicans wake up and revisit their core beliefs and principles and maybe even find some new ones.

Check out Ron Paul's first real stump speech of the campaign, delivered appropriately enough, outside Google HQ in Mountain View, CA this Saturday. He is really starting to catch fire. Love him or hate him, you will have to deal with him and the thousands of people like myself he has brought into political activism. The Freedom Movement is alive. The revolution is on...

Part 1:

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

And of course check out his interview for Google employees. What candidate can field questions as well and as instructively? The man is an educator as well as a statesman.

I am curious to hear what this group thinks of the man.


Reliapundit said...

you're joking. right?

duncan hunter is better.

Barry Dauphin said...

From Randy Barnett in todays' WSJ.

During that debate, the riveting exchange between Rudy Giuliani and Ron Paul about whether American foreign policy provoked the 9/11 attack raised the visibility of both candidates. When Mr. Paul, a libertarian, said that the 9/11 attack happened "because we've been over there. We've been bombing Iraq for 10 years," Mr. Giuliani's retort--that this was the first time he had heard that "we invited the attack because we were attacking Iraq. . . . and I've heard some pretty absurd explanations for September 11"--sparked a spontaneous ovation from the audience. It was an electrifying moment that allowed one to imagine Mr. Giuliani as a forceful, articulate president.

The exchange also drew attention to Mr. Paul, who until then had been a rather marginal member of the 10-man Republican field. One striking feature of Mr. Paul's debate performance was his insistence on connecting his answer to almost every question put to him--even friendly questions about taxes, spending and personal liberty--to the war.

richard mcenroe said...

Ron Paul's been sucking up to the Truthers.

I got something else he can suck.

Knucklehead said...


Knucklehead said...

BTW, my comment to Rick was tongue in cheek. I don't know diddley about Ron Paul, or Paul Ron, or whatever his name is. If he's an isolationist, or a retreatist, or whatever other form of "if we just withdrew from messing around with the world the world would stop messing around with us" dimwit then he'll never get my vote for anything.

Rick Ballard said...

What Knuck? His ears are somewhat smaller than Ross Perot's - that's gotta count for sumptin, right?

Offworld points to something that is a bit disturbing. Giuliani is trying to morph a bit - his "judicial panel" is a nice naked appeal to those, like myself, who consider judicial appoints to hold a preeminent place when considering a candidate. I have reservations about his temperament that are only matched by reservations about his love of the limelight, so I lean toward Thompson. Until I reflect upon my reservations concerning his attachment to the concept that government doesn't fix problems, government is the problem.

If it weren't for fear of the potential damage to be done to the Republic should the Beast of Chapaqua win, I wouldn't find the coming contest to be of much interest.

The Senate races in '08 are a bit more interesting - getting the Senate back is very close to being as important as grabbing the WH.

offworld said...

The early responses are disappointing.

I too thought as you do, and as recently as a couple months ago, I pined for the CFR-approved Fred Thompson. Dr. Paul woke me up to the truth I already knew. He also woke me up to the tremendous job we have to do in order to save the party and our country.

If the sentiment exhibited by your comments is dominant in the Republican party in six or twelve months, the party deserves defeat. However, the Democrats will just as surely take us closer to the brink of ruin. A depressing thought that...

Hillary has been anointed, even by the Bush clan, I fear because unless that little Goldwater Girl comes roaring back, she will do nothing to stop the project in the middle east or the further undermining of our soveriegnty through the collapse and replacement of our currency. She will preside over the final burial of our constitution and our integration into the NAU that her husband started with NAFTA.

It saddens me that we of good intention, who imagine ourselves to be patriotic or politically enlightened, can be so unfamiliar with the principles of our republic, so unfamiliar with the true implications of war, so quick to embrace the justifications offered by our leaders, so unfamiliar with the thinking of the brighter lights and wise statesmen of our history and conservative tradition.

I see our struggle as essentially one of education. Most people have difficulty working from first principles but many can be lead by example, so, I will proceed with some examples.

It is possible that you simply do not know the history of our involvement in the middle east and that we have been kicking a hornets nest over there for over fifty years, starting at least with the installation of the Shah.

It is possible you do not know that we are building an embassy bigger than the Vatican and any of Saddam's Palaces, smack in the middle of Baghdad -- a place we cannot secure -- and which will have 15ft thick walls and its own power and water.

It is possible you do not know it is the only significant construction project on schedule in the whole country while the rest of the city goes without dependable electricity and water.

It is possible you do not realize we hired Kuwaiti's who in turn imported labor from Packistan and elsewhere to build the thing, thereby ensuring little of the $500 million we're spending benefits Iraqis.

It is possible you do not know we are building 14 permanent bases in Iraq.

It is possible you have not thought through how this might look to Iraqis or the rest of the world.

It is possible you do not know the percentage of expendatures in this war that have gone to private, well-connected contractors.

It is possible you have not thought through the corrosive effects of having highly-paid contractors work alongside relatively modestly-paid volunteer soldiers.

It is possible you have not thought through the corrosive effects of the revolving door between public and private spheres, especially when the nexus is the pentagon and war.

It is possible you do not know how many rockets fall on the so-called "green zone" every day.

It is possible you do not have a close loved-one in theater and in danger every single day, making you think long and hard about the appropriateness of sacrifice.

It is possible you do not know that we are arming and training those who will take up arms against us.

It is possible you do not know the tribal and primative mentality that will never let a grievance go and which will ensure that our activities create thousands upon thousands of young men who wish to do us harm and that these greivences will fester into hatreds and be transferred to younger generations.

It is possible that you do not understand the nature of our debt-based monetary system and its relationship to our perpetual deficits, foreign trade imbalances and its intimate relationship to the military-industrial complex and modern warfare.

It is possible you have not contemplated the true financial and moral cost of our foreign committments.

It is possible you are not aware that the dollar has lost 50% of its value in the last five years.

Or, it is possible you know all these things and don't care. Perhaps you see the United States as the new incarnation of the Holy Roman Empire and you perceive your own interests aligned with its survival and expansion.

But I'll just point this out: unless you own serious shares in a Federal Reserve bank or an arms, security or logisitics contracting company, there is precious little net benefit for you in this war. If you do, there's little chance you'd be rooting around on blogger.

It is tough to contemplate. It is a hard pill to swallow. But you will swallow it, if not now, soon. Sober up, turn off the war cheerleaders on TV and talk radio, consult your faith and conscience, do a little research into the things which make you uncomfortable and then begin to understand what we have allowed to happen.

This administration is not conservative at all. Nor are any of the leading candidates for the white house. That, if nothing else, should disturb you unless you believe we have nothing to conserve.

richard mcenroe said...

"It is possible you do not know the tribal and primative mentality that will never let a grievance go and which will ensure that our activities create thousands upon thousands of young men who wish to do us harm and that these greivences will fester into hatreds and be transferred to younger generations."

I have too met a libertarian...

offworld said...

Richard, Your non answers, name calling and insults are telling. You don't seem like one of the original members of this group, at least as I remember it. How do you describe yourself politically?

richard mcenroe said...

I'm a registered Democrat who hasn't voted Democrat since '76, a veteran (infantry), and a gun owner. Make of it what you will.

buddy larsen said...

1976, my first and last Democrat vote. Fell for "the country needs a change". Learned, "change" is a big big word.

To me, Paul is demagoguing the cost side of the globalization ledger. This ain't honest. A billion people worldwide have moved into the middle class over the last five years.

loner said...

I voted for Ford in 1976 and Dole (again) in 1996. Odds are I'll be voting for the nominated Republican, no matter who he be, in 2008. As of today, I'll also be voting for the losing candidate, yet again, but there is still a possibility that both my vote and the likely outcome will change. Fifteen months is a long time.

Then it'll be on to 2012 when there'll be another election in November and there'll be a Republican candidate and a Democratic candidate and then someday I'll die and I won't vote anymore (though my name may be put to some future use) and there'll still be a Democratic candidate and a Republican candidate every fourth year and one or the other will be elected every fourth year and people will still be writing that the coming election will be the last free election if this so-and-so or if that so-and-so wins and someday, after all the mortals amongst us are long dead, that will actually be the case.

Rep. Ron Paul adds a dimension and his partisans add some sorely-lacking passion to the 2008 race. His chances of actually becoming President of the United States are so close to being zero that giving odds is a matter of deciding how many zeroes to include after the "1" and the first six.

buddy larsen said...

Offworld, something you should ask, re Dr. Pauls's financial warnings, is why the US long bond is--despite all the new liquidity & velocity--still at a low 5% yield.

If you investigate this question, if you look into the meaning of a low long bond yield, that is, why it is low and who & what is keeping it low, many of your fears will abate, I think.

Charlie Martin said...

Speaking as someone who was in on the founding of the Libertarian Party, call me when Ron Paul isn't hanging by a thread at 1 percent.

buddy larsen said...

He's selling fear. His followers take counsel of their fears, to the exclusion of all else.

When asked why, if things are so bad, they seem so good, the answer is always--and necessarily--some variant of "everything you see is an illusion".

This isn't a leader's message--this is a cult guru's message.

It's also a semantic ploy. Of course, everything is an illusion (including the sense that everything is an illusion). And of course, everything is a disaster in the long-run (man is tragic, aware of his own impending personal doom).

Paulism seems more a psychological than a political phenom.

Sorry, offworld--but you did ask for opinions.

Rick Ballard said...

"Learned, "change" is a big big word."

It ain't a synonym for "better", either.

How much "fixing" does a full employment, low inflation, steady growth economy require? Why is the value of 'Work X' performed by an American worth more than 'Work X' performed by a Pak or a Sri Lankan? The American is paid more because he's part of an integrated system developed over the past 250 years, as far as I can see. Is tinkering with the "unplanned" system the proper provenance of any politician or group of pols?

buddy larsen said...

And, I know, the response to such critique is "we're all doomed, just you wait and see."

And we could well be hell-bound. But so long as we don't cede the planet to tyranny, we at least gain time to conceivably better ourselves.

brylun said...

Ron Paul is a classic isolationist. For me, that position is not practical in a dangerous modern world. Latest polling shows Paul to have between 1 and 3 percent, which means that he has no chance of securing the Republican nomination. Many of his supporters are closet Democrats who despise the war. Come January he'll be but a footnote in history.

truepeers said...

The war is costing a lot. But aside from calling on allies to do and give more, which they should, what choice does America have? Does Ron Paul really have a vision of a world in which there is a realistic alternative to costly dealing with the rise of Islamic fundamentalism? That's a cost the global trade and economic system is going to have to bear one way or another. It's not something in which we really have a choice, whatever the many lies to the contrary being pushed by the liberal elites.

I suppose banning Islam, in all or in parts, in the US and stopping immigration would save on security costs at home. Is that part of his platform? Or is he really not just about saving money and, perhaps, preserving the republic from a religion that may not, for all we know, prove to be very compatible with democratic self-rule?

reddog said...

The problem with Ron Paul is that he is trying to be honest. This is the greatest sin in American politics.

He will never be a member of the Congressional leadership. He will never be nominated for POTUS by the GOP. If he was nominated and somehow elected, he would soon be shot down by a "deranged loner".

richard mcenroe said...

"f he was nominated and somehow elected, he would soon be shot down by a "deranged loner"."

And this sort of nonsense is the biggest reason Ron Paul should never hold high public office.

Charlie Martin said...

As I was telling someone the other day, I'd be more comfortable with an isolationist position if I thought isolation was possible.

Oh, and offworld, as I recall, Rick was a yargbie before you were; certainly he was one no later than you, as he was one of the originals who came here from Roger's comments.

buddy larsen said...

"...I'd be more comfortable with an isolationist position if I thought isolation was possible."

Me too. But it isn't possible. For the same reason the old "nuclear freeze" movement was wrong. There are other nations out there which in time would dominate an isolationist USA, via manifestations of the principle of comparative advantage, in global trade.

USA is not just another country--it's the country with the military which keeps global trade fair & transparant, through guaranteeing markets--and access to them.

Ron Paul turns this fact upside down, saying that the US military creates a comparative disadvantage for USA.

Okay, if that undeniable cost has no balancing benefit, I'd sure like to ask him for a suggestion as to how the globe can trade freely under another protocol (that is, another "do-able' protocol).

Politicians can and do go far demonizing the one side of a ledger.

Ross Perot did so, grabbed one in five papa Bush voters, and gave us Clintonism (with 43% of the popular vote).

Clintonism, of course, being a highly-organized exploitation of a rather dark well of human nature, is proving to be terribly durable.

loner said...


Politicians can and do go far demonizing the one side of a ledger.

Some commenters I associate with do that, too.