Ron Paul

by lizard

The crazy is possible, and the scramble is on. Ron Paul’s inevitable penetration into America’s political consciousness is frightening both sides of the aisle.

The Ron Paul brand is a weird assemblage, attracting seemingly disparate bits of our societal frustration. anti-war refugees and those criminalized by the drug war like some of what they hear. Anti-government libertarians and critics of America’s death-pact with Israel like some of what they hear. And, some would argue, corporations, racists, and anti-semites like some of what they hear as well.

Dave Lindorff, one of my favorite regulars at Counterpunch, has a piece up today, titled Why the Establishment is Terrified of Ron Paul.

It’s worth reading the whole piece, because Lindorff tries to put Paul in the best context possible, but for the purpose of this post’s focus, here’s the conclusion:

Libertarianism is at its core an ugly anti-social philosophy of selfishness carried to the extreme. It is the antithesis of all that has been good in human social evolution — the creation of philosophies of caring and of societies in which suffering and want are addressed and, where possible, ameliorated.

Interestingly though, Paul is not being pilloried by his establishment critics in the GOP or the Democratic Party, or in the media, for his Libertarian economic theories or even his far-out property-rights theories. These are, after all, also quietly shared by most people in both of the major parties, and of course are wildly popular among the ranks of the corporate elite, who know they can always get all the favors they want or need from politicians by buying them, and who are happy to spout the gospel of Ayn Rand and Milton Friedman when it comes to government regulation of their businesses or taxation of their personal hoards. Unfettered capitalism is also an article of faith in the corporate media.

That said, sometimes it all comes down to a couple of big issues, and in the unlikely chance that the election next November were to end up being the choice between Barack Obama and Ron Paul (and assuming no emergence of a viable Third Party progressive candidate like Rocky Anderson and hisJustice Party), while I might have a hard time pulling the lever for Paul unless he can really make it clear he has no truck with White Supremecists and their ilk, it would be easier than pulling a lever for Obama.

Why? Because with President Obama we would get more war, increased military spending, and at the rate he’s been going stripping away our Constitutional rights, there wouldn’t be any of those after another four years. We would also be electing someone who we now know lies through his teeth, who takes money from some of the biggest corporate thieves in human history, and who has appointed some of those very criminals to most or all of the key economic policy positions in his administration.

With Ron Paul as president, at least we’d be done with all the wars, the people of the rest of the world would be finally free of US military interference, including attacks by US drones. The long-suffering Constitution and its Bill of Rights would mean something again. We might even get a Supreme Court justice or two who actually believed that Congress should declare any future wars before we could fight them, and that citizens who were arrested had an absolute right to a speedy trial by a jury of peers. And we’d be electing someone who appears, especially for a politician, to be that rare thing: an honest man who says what he means and means what he says — and who doesn’t seem to be owned by the banksters.

We’d have a hell of a fight on our hands in a Ron Paul presidency, defending Social Security and Medicare, promoting economic equality, fighting climate change and pollution, defending abortion rights and maybe fighting a resurgence of Jim Crow in some parts of the country, but at least we wouldn’t have to worry about being spied upon, beaten and arrested and then perhaps shipped off to Guantanamo for doing it.

Ron Paul is now a phenomenon that has to be dealt with by both sides. The GOP is trying to keep the wheels from coming off in Iowa, and the DNC is wondering how substantial the threat to segments of their disillusioned base may be.

  1. Jaden Morgan

    lizzard19, you are a nut. you are either a shill, you benefit from the corruption or are mind-numbing clueless as to how the Constitution even works

    you arent fooling anyone that has woken up. I am unsubbing from this feed. good riddance

    • lizard19

      hmmm, I didn’t say anything about the constitution in this post, so maybe you can enlighten me as to what the hell you are talking about.

      as for being a shill, yes, I am actually a paid operative of the Republican party tasked with infiltrating this local progressive Montana blog in order to slowly undermine support for Democrat politicians. but it looks like I can’t fool everyone. you are wise, Jaden, to unsub from this feed.

      • Turner

        Small things first: it’s “aisle” not “isle.” Now a bigger thing: if you’re really saying that you’d prefer an “honest” racist, sexist homophobe over a pragmatist who is slowly making our country better, you’re nuts.

        And why is “honest” Ron Paul lying about statements he made years ago about blacks? What else would he lie about?

        Stop reading Counterpunch! Every time you go there you come back thoroughly unhinged.

        • lizard19

          have I said he’s honest? I don’t think I’ve ever accused any politician of being honest. if so, please remind me, Turner, where I have made such a crazy claim.

          as to your own mental disposition, if you are happy with the current lying politician in the White House, by all means, use your vote next year to validate his dangerous prosecution of the war on terror. just yesterday I was reading about how the US and Israel are discussing triggers for a preemptive strike on Iran.

          Israel and the U.S. are discussing “red lines” in Iran’s nuclear program, that if crossed would justify a preemptive strike on its nuclear facilities, the Daily Beast website reported on Wednesday.

          According to the report, Israel’s ambassador to the U.S., Michael Oren, filed an official complaint with the administration following a speech by U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta a few weeks ago, warning against a military strike on Iran.

          The Daily Beast reported that Panetta’s statements infuriated the Israeli government, which ordered ambassador Oren to file the complaint. The White House then relayed a message to Israel saying the administration has its own “red lines” concerning a strike on Iran, and that Israel does not need to act unilaterally. Israel’s protest also resulted in Panetta reversing his stand in an interview with CBS, saying the U.S. will use any means necessary to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon.

          if Obama wants to get reelected, he better ask Israel how high when they say jump.

          but you’re right, I’m the one that’s nuts for posting about Ron Paul’s political traction, and why it’s freaking out both sides of the aisle.

  2. Lizard, what you’ve stumbled upon is the “anybody but Obama” voter mindset, of which I myself have adopted.

    This election isn’t going to be decided by Ron Pauls bizarre foreign policy ideas, it is simply going to be a referendum on The Great Leader, and if he deserves to be re-elected.

  3. Ingemar Johansson

    I’m liking G. Malor take on the corn state.

    “BTW, I’m starting to hope for a Paul win in Iowa; it would almost certainly mean that the state would finally be stripped of its first-in-the-nation status. Yeah, I know. Somebody has to go first. I get that. Iowa doesn’t seem like that great a great choice anymore. Let somebody else get pandered to every four years. It might do us good to send the bloated state political apparatus to the chopping block. You like to throw around the word “establishment?” That’s an establishment, guys.”

  4. Ingemar Johansson


    Sen. Ben Nelson retiring.

    If you guys think voting for HC has no repercussions…think again.

  5. ladybug


    You are proving to be a less-than-ideal totalitarian subject. Trying to sort out what is true, and what is false, is troublesome to some authoritarian types dead certain that you are in need of readjustment. Thinking independently upsets them greatly. I think you are onto something. Reading certain material, like Counterpunch, unavailable at most all mind-stream media outlets, may soon (especially after the 2012 NDAA vote) be deemed a borderline criminal offense. You have been warned by an unauthorized enforcer to stop reading. Self-censor, or else. Seriously though, keep ’em coming. A rare deep breath of fresh air.

    • Turner

      I didn’t say that lizard shouldn’t be allowed to read Counterpunch. We still have a first amendment. I just said everytime he goes there he comes back dazed and confused.

      I was just worried about his mental well-being.

  6. ladybug


    You said,”Stop reading Counterpunch.” I said,”….warned by and unauthorized enforcer to stop reading.” Now, kindly explain to me how that means “…shouldn’t be allowed?” Neither of us said anything about being allowed to read. I assumed you lack the proper authority to permit reading, or stop another from reading. If I assumed correctly, your command lacked official (police powers) authority. And where does any of this have anything to do with the 1st Amendment? Dazed?

  7. lizard19

    this post, IMHO, is pretty tame, so I find the backlash intriguing.

    I’m nuts, a shill, dazed and confused, mentally unwell; I’m being told what NOT to read, and it’s being suggested that I must find an alleged “endorsement” from Eric to be scary (p.s. Eric, Paul’s foreign policy ideas are not nearly as bizarre as Obama continuing this war on a tactic called “terrorism”).

    I appreciate ladybug’s comments, though that part about it being borderline criminal to read dissident writing is disturbing because it’s getting more and more true.

    I think Ron Paul’s political existence, which has become more than just a nuisance, is another opportunity (like with OWS) to force some conversations that the message-makers from the two tents don’t want to have (like Israel, and that nation’s unusual degree of influence it has on US foreign policy).

    if Paul is willing to push some of those conversations, then I’m willing to at least ignore the knee-jerk ridicule and give the man a little consideration for taking a big risk.

    if I was Paul, I wouldn’t ride in any small planes for the next few months.

    • Turner

      Get a sense of pespective, Liz. No one in power gives a shit what website you visit. And people like me with no power to speak of don’t really care either.

      Counterpunch are deluded but they’re no more a threat to the republic than any other group flacking for the Republicans.

      • lizard19

        what kind of perspective would you like me to get, because I’m certainly not interested in your kind of naivete.

        and I’m also not interested in a perspective that arrogantly denigrates writers and activists as “flacking for Republicans” because they’re associated with a website you don’t like.

        here’s some perspective for you, Turner. you obviously have serious problems with Ron Paul’s association with racist statements made in his newsletters, and you seemed particularly bothered by Lindorff depicting Paul as honest because his bigotry is more straightforward than the politicians that hide behind coded rhetoric, like being “tough on crime” to justify policies that disproportionally negatively affect minority communities.

        the perspective you should consider is how politicians pander to bigots, xenophobes, and racists all the time. even Jon Tester, with his vote to kill the Dream Act, exhibited either true belief that the bill meant “amnesty” for job-stealing Mexicans, or, more probably, he made a calculated decision that pandering to that fear of the other would be politically advantageous.

  8. annie

    wow, this is really an interesting post and thread.

    i don’t like paul’s domestic thing. not my style. i like the epa and social security and federally funded education. i like public schools! i am much more socialist leaning. i also pounded the pavement for obama in the last election…because i mistakenly thought he wasn’t a war guy.

    here’s what i don’t like. i am uncomfortable with the thought that my country is sending unmanned drones over villages in the middle east and killing children in their beds while they are sleeping. it just bugs me. i’m not seeing the upside of this thing we have happening in the middle east.

    silly me.

    and while i really don’t like paul’s racist crap..i like civil rights legislation..if i had to make a choice right now between slaughtering a bunch of arabs or risking american jobs and things like that. my mind always wanders off and wonders what the cost of those wars (in the trillions) have cost the taxpayer and what we could do with that money.

    anyway, we’re basically hooked on a foreign policy dictated by our ‘special friends’ who want us to bomb iran. so if i could take back the iraq war, i would. i’ve decided to take back the iran war before it happens. either way we might be in soup lines but this way, whatever happens it will be ‘in country’. it’s not fair to keep killing hundreds of thousands of people in the middle east.

    so, i am voting for the only non war candidate available. plus, the upside of all this is the president doesn’t really get to decide domestic policy anyway. we have the congress for that.

    so, i’m holding my nose and voting for ron paul. a life long dem. and i am not alone.

    wake up montana.

    • Turner

      What happens, annie, if the choice is between Obama and Romney? Do you write in Paul?

      • annie

        the choice is between obama and romney is just a matter of how fast we slide downhill. we can’t continue to throw trillions into middle east wars without digging a deeper grave.

        look at how much more the american people are engaged in politics since we’ve become broke. as we become more broke they will engage more. between now and whenever it is the american people get it war is not just killing them, but us too..we will keep sliding down.

        so, to answer your question. i’m not sure it would make much difference what i would do because both will lead to more war. nobody needs my vote for that.

        here’s the thing turner…dem candidates keep moving to the middle to compete with the gop. they don’t want to ‘risk’ the middle. but it usually aint the middle that pounds the pavement for them. the dems better wake up and realize they are loosing the left. they take us for granted. if the dems loose they will blame the left they lost at the polls. but when they win do we get the credit? how do they thank us? how did obama thank us?

        i am tired of being taken for granted. if our dem politicians keep moving to the right then we’ll get the government we deserve, and i could care less who you blame.

      • annie

        ps, in case you can’t hear me loud and clear. i am pissed at my party. they take advantage of me and my vote and my support. they think what they are offering is so much better than the gop i will naturally vote for them.

        you know who they care about? swing voters. so let them roll over for swing voters since they don’t appreciate me. let’s see how well the dems do when the left abandons them.

        btw, i am not that rare. there are a lot of very pissed off ex dems out there. your efforts, to convince me i am wrong..would be better spent convincing dem politicians to stop moving to the right and groveling for swing voters.

        i’m tired of their sloppy seconds when i’m supposed to sit around the house being loyal. not happening anymore. 30 years of being loyal to the same party, and i’ve had enough.

        you want my vote, work for it.

  9. jackruby

    The “racist thing” regarding Paul holds about as much water as the “racist thing” did regarding Obama and his association with Jeremiah Wright. I would vote for Paul if he was on the ballot against Obama. I would vote for Obama over any of the other repub candidates.

  1. 1 Montana Democrats Have Bigger Problems Than Media Whores | 4&20 blackbirds

    […] media smear campaigns are ok if they are against crazy libertarian presidential candidates, like Ron Paul, though you wouldn’t hear any wailing about Paul from those now aghast at the media in […]

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