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I Don’t Have A Crush On Ron Paul

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Ron Paul is an internet phenomenon. On any given day, stories about Ron Paul represent roughly half to two-thirds of the most popular links on any of a dozen or more link-aggregation sites. Ron Paul has the most YouTube subscribers. Ron Paul is the top search engine candidate. Ron Paul set a single-day fund-raising record. Given how often Ron Paul's name comes up, one might think that Ron Paul was a shoe-in for President in 2008, or at least for the Republican presidential candidate for 2008. Instead, Ron Paul is dead last, where he belongs.

Ron Paul isn't the first example of online fever failing to translate into real-life success. We can call him the Snakes on a Plane candidate, or go with my label: the one-trick pony candidate. Ah, but what a trick!

The appeal of Ron Paul is as simple as his message. He wants to take the United States back to the "good old days," before we started essentially unprovoked wars against foreign powers that were no imminent threat to us, before we spent money on things like social security, welfare, or public schools. Who among us hasn't felt the tug from that siren call of simplicity? Who hasn't recognized problems in the federal government? Paul is clearly no friend of big government. In fact, Paul has earned the sobriquet "Dr. No" as a result of his consistent "No" votes in Congress. He votes "No" on everything, except when he votes "Yes." Come to think of it, why did he vote for $70 million on Section 8 housing vouchers? Or on federal funding for health providers who don't perform abortions? Or on an expensive fence separating the U.S. from Mexico? Agree or disagree with each of those positions, each involves a vote for increasing federal spending, something I keep hearing he's never done. Oops!

I'm not out to "get" Ron Paul. Let American Thinker raise questions about Ron Paul, racism, and 9/11 conspiracies. I'm concerned less about those possibilities than about the obvious: Ron Paul is simple-minded, supplying sound bites to complex problems. He's not a credible candidate, and shouldn't be. No amount of attempting to redefine "credible" will change that.

Let's step back a moment and realize that we're talking about a man who seems to believe that the U.S. President has the power to set the federal budget all by himself, and dissolve department after department of the government single-handedly. Health and Human Services? Gone! Education? Gone! Energy? Homeland Security? Gone! Feel a little thrill? Excited that someone is finally talking about reducing government, and getting the fed out of our lives? Not worried about where all those ex-federal employees are going to work? Not worried about a little number-fuzziness when it comes to a few hundred billion dollars here or there? Ron Paul just might be your man! Apparently all it will take are a few strokes of his pen, and then he'll apparently spend the remaining three years and 51 weeks of his first term in office vetoing attempts by those silly congress-people to spend money that isn't there to spend, since Paul will have eliminated the federal income tax. Not bad for a man currently in last place in the race to see who will concede the 2008 election to the Democrats!

Newt Gingrich garnered a few laughs when his science fiction alternate history novel surfaced. Ron Paul has created what could be an even more ambitious alternate history, one in which we avoided Taliban "blowback" by not arming or training the Taliban against the Soviet army, but at the same time somehow still manage to win the Cold War so we're not all speaking Russian. Given that he also advocates not sending U.S. troops anywhere around the world, he's exercising a truly impressive creative imagination, if an irrelevant one, and I think there could be a real future for him as a best-selling science fiction writer if he gets tired of delivering babies. The beauty of writing alternate histories is that you only really have to deal with one side of the equation. Real life just isn't that simple. Unfortunately, some folks seem to actually be taking his fictional scenario seriously.

At heart, I'm still at least a little of that Reagan conservative who watched sadly as Reagan washed up on the rocky shore of the beltway and rolled back out to sea leaving a larger federal government and higher taxes than when he crashed in. I like the idea of a true conservative working to remind the party of its conservative roots, especially in an election year that might just see a liberal so-called Republican take the party nomination. Unfortunately, Ron Paul's supporters seem to have forgotten the role Paul is meant to play, and have engaged in a little fantasy writing of their own. They've rewritten the script and elevated Paul from a walk-on role in the first act to the daring romantic lead who slays the two-headed dragon of federal encroachment and illegal immigration, rescues the princess (who really just wants to home educate her children, but is forced into the workplace by high taxes), and rules the kingdom in peace forever.

Paul supporters tend to be like that guy you avoid at parties because he only ever talks about one issue, and simply won't shut up. He follows you around, showing up at all your favorite haunts, until all you want to do is stay home, just to avoid the constant talk about that one issue. Then he starts calling you. On your mobile phone. It's fine to believe whatever it is, you tell yourself, but such fanatical devotion is discomfiting to see. You start to wonder, is he "all there?" Is something wrong with him, that he fixates so easily?

There's always a Goldwater, a LaRouche, a Perot, a Nader or Buchanan, a Paul. Let's not kid ourselves: they don't win. They shouldn't win. They're all one side of the equation, but not the other. Their only appeal is as the opposition candidate. Elected, they'd be Reagan at best, sticking to his ideals enough to irritate ideological opponents, while compromising them enough to disillusion supporters. At worst, they'd be Ron Paul.

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  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    I think the thing that bugs me most about Paul is that his supporters seem to think he’s the first candidate in 200 years worth voting for. Um, there’s one of these guys nearly every election. Grow up and move on.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    well well, Phillip…fun Article

    now we’ll see how fast and furious the Paul supporters react to your little *tantrum*

    heh

    Excelsior?

  • Brian Middleton

    Oh boy, this will be funny when your comments gets overloaded with corrections from Paul’s supporters. Oh yeah, by the way, you really need to do your homework before posting something about someone you really don’t seem to know anything about. More importantly get your facts straight. First, Ron Paul is NOT dead last. His numbers are growing and his is polling at about 5-7% nationwide, ahead of Fred Thompson.

    Also see this morning’s associated press on Ron Paul.

    When you post garbage like this you are going to expect you be eating up by REAL Facts. I will let most others get involved. Enjoy…

  • John-Ross Cromer

    Ron Paul internet supporters are so zealous because this is their first time to participate in the Presidential election process and they see their efforts paying off. I’d wager most supporters did not participate in the Howard Dean internet movement due to ideology differences.

    However, I disagree that Ron Paul supporters are of the crazy mindset that he’ll be able to push through his agenda the first week of his term. Instead, they are fed up with the current direction the government is taking and view Dr. Paul as a the leader best suited to reverse the trend. For as many “Ron Paul wants to disband the IRS” posts out there, I have yet to read a “Vote for Ron Paul so you won’t have to pay income tax in 2010″ thread.

  • Uniblogger

    Blasphemy! You’ll smoke a terd in hell for that, non-believer! Vote Ron PAUL 08!

  • Brian Middleton

    Phillip,

    I mean, if you are going to write an opinion, let it at least your conclusions be based on facts, rather than erroneous assumptions. Also, I am not so sure that raising 4.2 million in ONE day is so delusional. You write Phillip, that Paul is a“ man who seems to believe that the U.S. President has the power to set the federal budget all by himself,” Where are you getting this from? Do you always make it up as you go along?

    You also write that Paul “wants to take the United States back to the “good old days,” before we started essentially unprovoked wars against foreign powers that were no imminent threat to us, before we spent money on things like social security, welfare, or public schools.” You mean the days where the US Constitution was ratified? Or you mean the days when we began implementing communist principles? Which one do you like the most Phillip? The Bill of Rights or the Communist Manifesto’s 10 planks? I’m not sure about you Phillip, but I will take the former, you can take the latter.

    Since when it is okay for someone like yourself, Phillip, to decide who should and should not run? Who made you the election king? You say you are “not out to get Ron Paul” but your article is infested with some pretty vile opinions that would make any reasonable person believe you are out to get Ron Paul. But hey Phillip, what do I know, huh?

    Oh yeah, and then we have the regular smear tactic about Paul’s “racist friends and beliefs.” That one should get your readers to really hate Paul, but wait; did you really do your homework Phillip? I would say it is safe to assume you didn’t. None of those accusations have any merit whatsoever, but let’s stick our head in the sand and use the ostrich argument.

    I’m done for now. Enjoy

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Gosh, Brian, if only I’d linked the words “Ron Paul is dead last” to a chart of some kind, showing that he’s dead last, behind everyone else. Of course, things change, and the last poll on that chart is currently 11/11, so who knows? Maybe in the last four days he’s tripled his support to pull ahead of Huckabee, putting him into fifth place out of six. That would be impressive, wouldn’t it?

    I don’t expect anybody to care, but I’m not looking for “corrections.” What a beautiful euphemism! I’m making very few factual assertions, and supplied links for most of those. What I’ve done a lot of is express my opinion, which is why this article is classed as “opinion” rather than, say, “news.” In my opinion, most Paul supports are stuck at about high school level when it comes to political discourse, and what’s most unfortunate about it is that they haven’t learned that nobody else cares.

    If you are interested in “corrections,” here’s one for you: That link you provided on polling data (a press release from the Ron Paul campaign, incidentally) is talking about New Hampshire only, while the poll results to which I linked are national. Thompson is doing especially poorly in New Hampshire, and Paul is doing well there.

    Given the libertarian leanings of New Hampshire, I would expect Paul to be polling near 70%, so 7% is just another indicator of how niche is his appeal.

  • Brian Middleton

    I’m sorry, I forgot to add this one for you too Phillip.

    Paul seems to be gaining momentum. But that can’t be Phillip. You just wrote the opposite? Who should we believe? A sophomore or the real Press? I’m sorry, are you even a sophomore?
    Enjoy

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    John-Ross, you hit the nail on the head so early, I guess I can quit responding to comments already! It is, indeed, the first time involved in the political process for many, maybe even most, of Paul’s supporters. The interesting thing about first-timer is that they lack the perspective that sitting through a few decades of elections brings.

    Also, first-timers don’t tend to vote. It’s weird, but Bush won in 2004 despite a huge projected turnout from first-time Democratic voters. Apparently that turnout, like many other projections of large turnouts by first-timers, failed to materialize. It certainly failed to make a difference.

    Everybody’s a first-timer once. Election night always hurts, and you rarely get quite as excited about politics again, but there you go.

  • James

    Phil, I have to say your bias is showing. I dont adore Ron Paul either, but your writing makes it sound like you have a personal vendetta against him. I follow a lot of candidates because the issues are important to me. I can think of two off the top of my head that you twisted around.

    1- His economic stance, even Steve Forbes voices support for Ron Paul on fiscal issues. Alan Greenspan wrote articles backing the Gold Standard. It just sounds radical because we are indoctrinated to think the market cant exist without the FED’s heavy hand.

    2- Rewriting history? I find it interesting that you think our actions can inspire no reactions, but if someone crosses us, then our own reactions are directly caused by others transgressions against us. Any student of history will tell you that nations dont exist in a vacuum.

    I like some of what Ron Paul says because it makes sense. I also liked it when McCain said dont commit torture in my name, because it made sense. Or when Bush said, lets get Bin Laden in Afghanistan, because it made sense. It sounds like this is just a hate article, perhaps you have good intentions, but we need real journalism and not media obfuscation of where our candidates stand. There are people who look to you for real information on the issues. You have such power to help your fellow Americans, please employ that power justly.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    James, did you read what I wrote? The only thing I said about Paul’s economic policies was supported by a link demonstrating that even after accounting for inflation, Paul’s statement about income tax being unnecessary is off by about $600 billion. That’s it. How did I twist Paul’s economic stance around?

    Your point about our actions not existing in a vacuum is a great one. It also happens to be exactly the point I was making, so I’m glad we agree!

  • Larry L

    Unfortunately it took segregationist Governor Wallace to reveal the truth that “there’s not a dime’s worth of difference between” Republicans and Democrats. The Democrats willingly went along with the War in Iraq, suspension of Habeas Corpus, detaining protesters, banning books like “America Deceived’ from Amazon, stealing private lands (Kelo decision), warrant-less wiretapping and refusing to investigate 9/11 properly. They are both guilty of treason.
    Support Dr. Ron Paul and save this great nation.
    Last link (before Google Books bends to gov’t Will and drops the title):
    America Deceived (book)

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Uniblogger, it’s spelled “turd.” Thanks for the comment.

  • joey

    wow. another moron cashing in on ron paul related hits. man you should be able to line your lame blog with even more shitty ads. congrats fuckface

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Brian, even with my long comments, I suspect you’ll exceed the number of words I’ve written on this page before long!

    Did I say Paul was losing momentum? Can you show me that in my article? Somehow I missed it. In fact, I led the article with a short list of ways in which Paul is gaining momentum, not losing it.

    Thanks for the comment, though. Do you want my corrections? I suspect not.

  • Casey

    All Hail the Election King!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    thanks joey i appreciate your comments. i hope the punctuation and capitalization within the article wasnt too confusing. ill look into the more ads things some other time. im trying to set a one day ad revenue record on thanksgiving day. wanna help.

  • Brian Middleton

    Gosh Phillip,

    You write “I’m making very few factual assertions, and supplied links for most of those. What I’ve done a lot of is express my opinion, which is why this article is classed as “opinion” rather than, say, “news.”

    Well, you said it Phillip. Very “few” factual findings.” You have an absolute right to write your opinion, BUT it has to be based on something. Can you imagine we had news organizations just give opinions with no basis in fact or supporting evidence? Oh wait, we do have those. Hannity and O’Reilly so I apologize.

    You do realize that you do yourself and your readers a disservice when you write just you make up as you go along. A court renders an “opinion” (conclusion) BUT it is based on the facts and evidence. Do yourself a favor and stick to that principal.
    Then your assumption that Ron Paul voters that never voted before and that they lack perspective. Let me get my Barney Dinosaur doll and pacifier cause I’m about to cry.

  • TORMENTORRR

    There is no way you could not have a crush on that secksi 72-year-old piece of hot untamed ass!

    haha are you serious Philly? What kind of lame ass title is that?

    “I don’t have a crush on Ron Paul”

    Closet Homo. hehe.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Brian, I agree with you! That’s why I provided links supporting my factual statements. Do you have any examples of facts I got wrong? Does Paul not plan to shut down the departments I listed? Was the War of 1812 provoked? (That’s actually more opinion than fact, but I’m trying to be generous.)

    By the way, speaking of facts and getting things right, it was John-Ross Cromer who first suggested that Ron Paul supporters to be getting involved for the first time. I know a guy in his sixties who has been a Republican elector for decades who supports Ron Paul, so I’m well aware that John-Ross Cromer’s assertion isn’t universal. I don’t think he suggested it was.

  • Jared

    Phil, thanks for actually answering reader comments in your blog, even if I believe what you write is rubbish and probably done to get some hits and traffic, but I am interested in what horse you have in the race?

    Also I believe Paul is the furthest thing from a sound bite candidate…

  • http://hammer2006.blogspot.com Alex Hammer

    See Also: By Rep. Ron Paul – Entangling Alliances – November 15, 2007. Ron Paul as Vice President For Barack Obama.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    TORMENTORRR, I’m confused. Are you saying that you have a crush on Ron Paul sexually? But I’m the one harboring but denying homosexual leanings?

    I don’t think the average young girl with a crush on her favorite celebrity is actually seriously contemplating said celebrity’s hot untamed anything, but I’ve never actually been a young girl, so I could be mistaken on that point.

    Thanks for the comment.

  • Brian Middleton

    Waz up Phillip my man,

    You write: “[d]id I say Paul was losing momentum? Can you show me that in my article? Somehow I missed it”

    When did I say you said Paul was NOT gaining momentum? Show me where? I was simply making a point to counter your erroneous conclusion that is implied from your article that Ron Paul is dead last, thus has no chance in hell. Well, we are still one year away, and let me tell you this Phillip my man. Bill Clinton was doing poorly around this time, now he is a second term President.

    Oh yeah my man Phillip, what can we do to change your mind about Dr. Paul? Is there any particular issue that would change your mind, and if so, what would you need?

    Your new buddy Brian

    PS> aren’t we having fun? You love the attention don’t you. I know you probably wrote this article because you were bored and tired of watching free 10 sec porn on the Internet. =)

  • Vegan

    When things are in such dire straits here in the US, then why shouldn’t a radical change be warranted? Things may be going great for you, but those of us living paycheck to paycheck, with no health insurance or savings, NEED a radical change. Right now, Ron Paul is the one that is not only proposing that radical change, but doing so in a straight-talking way. I don’t like being BSed, and that is what Giuliani and Hillary, Edwards and Obama, Romney and Thompson are all doing. They want to win, and they will do and say what they need to in order to do it.

    Frankly, I went into this election season under the impression that I would rather abstain than vote for someone that I don’t trust. Two weeks ago I found out about Ron Paul, and now I’ll gladly give my vote to him, and him alone. I don’t even have a bed to sleep on, but I gave his campaign a donation – the first one I’ve ever given to a politician.

    If he’s not on the ballot, and no other real ‘maverick’ emerges, then I’m staying home on election day.

  • Jon

    This proves that bloggers are worthless human beings, sitting and typing nonsense articles in their mom’s basement. Maybe if you actually read something about Paul (doing your job, however sad it may be), you would be able to write about what he really stands for. And also you did a great job of alienating all of your readers that are voting for the first time in this upcoming election.

    My advice to you sir, is to go pick up a copy of A Foreign Policy of Freedom, by Dr. Paul, and there you can read all of his official speeches on the floor of congress from the 70s until present, and there you will see that if we listened to this man 30 years ago the entire world would have been better off.

    Didn’t your mother ever tell you to do your homework?

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Jared, I’m a Republican, though I’ve become disillusioned with “my” party that 2008 may mark my departure. I voted for the Libertarian candidate in 2000, but now regret that. There are some things I like about McCain, but many things I don’t. I’d vote for Clinton before I’d vote for Giuliani. I might skip the Presidential ticket before I’d vote for Romney. I heart Huckabee in some ways. I even like many of Paul’s positions, not that they’ll ever appear on a national ticket.

    Your sound bite comment is a good point. Generally speaking, Paul is to be commended for issuing long statements on issues rather than avoiding details. It is specifically on his “blowback” assertion that I’m most disappointed with what seems like an overly-simplistic description. Paul says that if we hadn’t armed the Taliban against the Soviets, there would have been no 9/11, no war in Afghanistan or Iraq, and so on. This may be true. It’s a debatable point, given the decades-long history of Islamist terrorism.

    However, as I pointed out and as James agreed in #10, every action prompts a reaction. We helped the Taliban against the Soviets because we saw the Soviets as a serious threat and thought we could weaken them on their south porch. All of this is arguable without resolution, since there’s no way to be sure, but it seems to have worked. In other words, arming the Taliban against the Soviets appears to have contributed to the downfall of the Soviet Union. So avoiding the current Islamist conflagration, assuming we could have done so by not arming the Taliban, might have the adverse effect of causing us to lose the Cold War.

    Alternate history is never simple, but it’s fascinating, which is why so many novels are dedicated to the genre. I think that Paul’s assertion turns a very complex set of issues into what amounts to little more than a sound bite in this case.

    In a sense, it’s neither here nor there, since history is done. The real question is what he would do going forward, and whether a hasty troop withdrawal would create more killing fields or not.

  • Clavos

    How could anyone ever get tired of watching free 10 second porn on the internet?

    Great article, Phillip.

    Man, the Paulies are like ducks on a junebug, the second someone posts anything even remotely critical of his campaign!

    The biggest negative to Paul is his almost complete lack of a coherent foreign policy plan, IMO.

  • Brian Middleton

    Hey my man Phillip,

    Here we go again pal’o’mine. You write: “Do you have any examples of facts I got wrong?”

    When did I say you got your facts wrong? Do you have a condition suffering from selective reading? I think you do, because you overlooked a lot of what I had to say, I guess conveniently. I said that your OPINION should be based on facts.

    Let me ask you this my homie Phillip. Are you a communist or someone who supports communist ideas in the closet? I’m not being sarcastic.

    Your ghetto friend

    Brian.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    odds that the Paul supporters swarm and crash the website?

    but it will gather enough google juice to up the revenue from the clicks…great job!

    Excelsior?

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Brian (#23), in #8 you wrote “Paul seems to be gaining momentum. But that can’t be Phillip. You just wrote the opposite?”

    That prompted my question in #14, asking where I suggested Paul was losing momentum. Perhaps a better “the opposite” would be to say he’s “not gaining momentum,” but I didn’t write that either. I’ve twice now provided a link to a polling chart showing that he’s rising. From last to still last so far, but he might shoot up into fifth or even fourth place in the next nine months!

    I hope you appreciate the correction!

  • Brian Middleton

    Vegan wrote: “I don’t even have a bed to sleep on, but I gave his campaign a donation – the first one I’ve ever given to a politician.”

    The same here. I have NEVER voted for a Republican and I have NEVER donated money to ANYONE, except Ron Paul. Something about him get the passion out in people and mostly from people who will go in with an open mind, rather than getting the sound bytes from people like my man Phillip. RON PAUL 2008

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Vegan (#24), I’m glad you’ve found a candidate you like. I hope your state has early primary voting, so you get a chance to vote for him.

    You asked a question, “When things are in such dire straits here in the US, then why shouldn’t a radical change be warranted?” I haven’t said that radical change is unwarranted, just that expecting it is naive. In addition, “radical change” could mean anything! I’ve known people who believed, especially during the 1990s, that it was time for an armed overthrow of the U.S. government. Militia nutjobs, by and large. Are you talking about that kind of radical change? I must warn you, the pigs will start sleep in the beds!

    Change for the sake of change isn’t enough. Things are bad in many ways, but not all, and they can always get worse!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Jon (#25), how can one single article prove that “bloggers are worthless human beings, sitting and typing nonsense articles in their mom’s basement?” How can one single article prove anything?

    I wonder what your comment proves…

  • Brian Middleton

    WAZ UP!! P H I L L I P !

    Can we get back to the real issues I posted, like what it would take for you to change your mind. Also, when you get a chance address some of the other issues IO posted which you conveniently ignored instead of focusing only on Paul’s numbers, which ARE rising. Unless you want to explain how Clinton won in 1992 after being so far behind around the same time, or even unknown, but ended up not only with the democratic nomination but the presidency.

    Now, I’m no delusional person and will acknowledge that Paul may be a long shot, BUT you can NEVER predict what will happen, especially with what is going on with Hillary and Giuliani right now. IF both go down in numbers others will take their place.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Clavos (#27), isolationism is coherent! :-)

    Thanks for your kind words. I suspect I’ll get very few today.

  • gao xia en

    I could refute your bullshit point-by-point but why bother? I’ll just cut through the crap and say, “You’re an asshole”.

  • Freewheeler

    “Let’s step back a moment and realize that we’re talking about a man who seems to believe that the U.S. President has the power to set the federal budget all by himself, and dissolve department after department of the government single-handedly.”

    Ron Paul has stated over and over that the Presidency is not a dictatorship and what he really wants is to help start shifting the culture in this country that we need government to do every little thing for us and that America has lost its faith and understanding of how markets operate.

    This is just one of the many incorrect or misguided statements you make in this article. I have no problem with you opposing Paul. But you resort to the ‘soundbite’ hackery you claim to disdain.

  • Clavos

    “I’ll just cut through the crap and say, “You’re an asshole”.”

    Nothing better for our country than good, intelligent political discourse, I always say…

    But indicative of the mental acuity of the American voter, perhaps?

    God help US!

  • http://the-edge.blogspot.com Mike Taht

    I’d be utterly willing to debate energy policy, science & technology policy, & space policy (all things that Ron Paul advocates may do badly on – but I note that other candidates are ignoring these issues, too. I saw a ray of hope the other day in seeing obama publish something on those issues)

    Paul supporters tend to be focused on the things that cost the most money, and the most blood, and the most freedom, and I think they have more than a few valid points to make there.

    Your last argument regarding polling numbers is somewhat circular. If it isn’t obvious to you that it takes money, lots of it, spent over years, to even register new (or old) ideas on anyone’s brain, then you haven’t been paying attention.

    Your links back to the war of 1812 are interesting, as that war was the last successful invasion of continental US soil. The British, a great sea power, controlled the seas, and ultimately invaded and burned Washington in retaliation for the US incursions into Canada… and the US was the one who declared war first, in support of territorial ambitions at a time when Britain was involved in another distracting war.

    The US mistakenly thought that the former US citizens living in Canada would welcome the invasion. They didnt.

    1812 is a fascinating example of history.

    Substitute events in Iraq for either Canada or the US in 1812 and think through how it might have played out. Think also how China and other world powers of today, such as Venezuela, think of the current conflicts the US is involved in, in context of how France and Spain thought of the 1812 war….

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Brian (#28), you’re now asking “When did I say you got your facts wrong?” Let’s see, in #3 you suggested I would be “overloaded with corrections” and that I needed to “do [my] homework” and “get [my] facts straight.” You also called my article “garbage” and said I would be “[eaten] up by REAL Facts.”

    In #6 you contrasted what you labeled my “erroneous assumptions” with “facts.”

    In #8 (where you referred to a campaign press release as “the real Press,” which gave me a chuckle) you incorrectly suggested that I wrote the opposite of a fact.

    I could go on, but you’ve posted a lot of comments!

    I like the McCarthy shout-out — very nice!

  • Brian Middleton

    PHILLIP my man,

    You rock brother. I wanted to give you an example of a straight forward fact based article so you may learn in the future how to write a decent article.

  • 1 Vote for Ron Paul

    I just laugh, because I can hear the nervousness in your squeaky voice. Ron Paul will take the Republican nomination, and, as a liberal, I will vote for him!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    I’m running a bit short on time and will be offline for a few hours today, but I will be back to respond to most comments later. Sorry!

  • Vegan

    I still know people who believe a violent overthrow of the government is the only way to change things. Maybe in a few years, I’ll think that way too. Right now, almost any change WILL be for the better. When you’re on the bottom, there’s not much farther you can sink. Frankly, I think his ideas for change are good (despite my utter hatred for the rich), and are the only ones that also include a plan to stop the US from being the world’s leading *sshole.

    Ron Paul isn’t the one preaching about ending poverty – that would be Edwards, the rich guy who spends hundreds of dollars on haircuts (which IS a sign that he just doesn’t get it). He doesn’t need to be the one making glib statements about the poor for me, one of those “poor,” to support him. There were a lot of people from North Philly at his rally on Saturday, and we were all there for one reason – he’s our best chance. Having $50 extra in our paycheck each week can make a big difference to someone who can barely eek out a living on what they’re currently getting.

  • Brian Middleton

    Phillip, are yoi gonna continue to stay on the “facts” issue, and disregard everything else that you obviously don’t or can’t answer? Let me know so I don’t waste anymore time.

    Yes, there are plenty of others here that have corrected your erroneous conclusions.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    for Brian – the desire of Paul and his ilk to get rid of NASA alone is enough of a reason to not vote for him, imo

    R&D spurred by Fed spending is responsible for quite a number of achievements, including the very Internet we are holding this discussion on

    earlier, one Commenter tried to conflate some U.S. policies to “the Communist Manifesto”, that one really bloggled my Mind…

    closest i can see to that would be Social Security, and that is a FAR cry from anything “communist”

    it’s that kind of sloppy thinking that turns many folks off to Paul’s more reasonable positions

    wasn’t he one of those who sided with Creationism over evolution theory? i’m truly curious about that one…

    Excelsior?

  • bubbleskid

    To pick one statistic to support your assertion “he is dead last” isn’t fair. He isn’t last in all polls, and in fact he is a leader or winner in some polls.
    He is definitely a leader/winner of straw polls. That is real people showing up to vote. Less telling but still interesting are “text polls”, which, even though people whine about them being “spammed”, each cell phone number can only vote once.
    The main issue is just that a lot of people haven’t HEARD of Ron Paul. Yet. Many people haven’t really started to follow the Presidential campaigns. So if they do offer a name in a poll, it might just be one of the big ones they can’t well avoid, since “Giuliani” and “Clinton” are tossed around right and left.

    Ron Paul hasn’t said that he votes “no” 100% of the time. He votes “no” a LOT, but he votes to uphold the Constitution. And, I suppose sometimes he has to vote choosing the lesser of two evils. Ron votes with conscience, conviction, and consistency, a rarity in today’s world.

    Of course he doesn’t expect to have all his ideas enacted during his first week of Presidency. Some of them would take a long time to put in place, and others might never be put through. That doesn’t mean he shouldn’t try. That doesn’t mean they are “crazy” ideas.

    Wanting to run America the way America was intended to be run… nothing crazy there.

    I’m a citizen of the USA, and Ron Paul has my vote.

  • Fazsha

    GUYS GUYS GUYS! This guy is not annoyed with RP – he’s annoyed with people who support him passionately. Every candidate has people waiting in the bushes to rip them – it’s just that RP has white-hot momentum and so he’s now the target – it’s flattering actually. I don’t see anybody posting “Duncan Hunter is Not Your Savior” articles! However, you do see a lot of articles ripping Rudy – he’s a front runner. (Of course, Rudy deserves it. If this guy thinks RP presumes to set budget policy all by himself, what does he think Rudy believes?)

  • Freewheeler

    gonzo,

    I would disagree with your assessment of the affect of Fed funded R&D. I actually type this from an office that consults clients on procuring and administering grants and tax credits for things like R&D. Since being here, I have learned one thing: the government hasn’t the faintest clue on how to encourage growth and development. I deal directly with the government and clients and its pathetic the ineffectiveness and inefficiency of this system. Of course companies love it because they get free money (for things they often will do anyway). The government agency can then make claim that their funds made the resulting expansion, development, invention, etc possible. It’s not true and I have spoken to my clients about it. Taking money away from people like you and me to give to companies to research is not a sound, effective system. Once again, in my mind, the market has proven to me that it should be left alone.

  • martin

    but at the same time somehow still manage to win the Cold War so we’re not all speaking Russian.

    I was actually taking this article seriously until I read this sentence.

  • Matthew Clark

    Fine opinion on Paul. Many have the same opinion in my family: his vision is limited and he has too simplistic thinking.

    I’m a Paul supporter, but I respect that opinion as well. I fear people who have your opinion equate long winded explanations and ‘status-quo’ (because it’s gotten us here and we’re not bankrupt yet, so if we continue our path we should be alright…, meanwhile, ignoring the signs of economic recession) with well thought-out rational thinking. Sometimes the simplest answer is the best answer.

    At least you’ve given time to look at Ron Paul as a legitamite candidate.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    Freewheeler – do note that i was NOT talking about R&D grants given out by the Fed, but rather R&D done BY the FED…ARPA net turned into the internet we are talking across…

    and form NASA alone we have many things , transistors, which lead to the IC chip, miniturization processes, medical telemetry and more

    thanks for the Thought, but the facts differ

    don’t mistake me, there are many things the Fed should NOT be involved in..like warrantless wiretapping and datamining the Internet

    the Debate is over how, and when the Fed shoudl be involved…and that’s a large part of what political discussion should be about in our Nation

    neither the outright socialists, or the minimalist libertarians are correct, imo

    but both those extremes have some valid points, and figuring it all out is what our process is for

    Excelsior?

  • jmklein

    Goldwater was never elected, but he destroyed the Democratic party and set the stage for Republican dominance.

    Ron Paul may not win, but he is setting the precedent that it is ok to be against the Iraq War and the Drug War and still be a Republican. Honestly those are the only two issues were Republican’s are on the wrong side of history.

    Capitalist economics are already dominant, more and more economic theory is becoming orthodox behind capitalism and there the Republican party is on the high ground. But over the endless war in Iraq they are on the wrong side. And over the War on Drugs, they are behind one of the most cartoonish and obviously ineffective prohibition efforts in history.

    By moving the party in a Libertarian direction, Paul is securing a new and very powerful base for the Republicans, and assuming the Democrats stay the course they will get utterly mauled in the coming decades.

  • Matt Parrott

    Phillip,

    Is there a candidate who is not speaking as if the Presidency were omnipotent? All of the candidates describe how they would “attempt to” run America, and everybody knows that we have congressional and supreme court checks on that power (in theory, only, it seems these days). Hillary doesn’t declare that she will make an abortive effort at passing healthcare reform that will be hopelessly mauled by congress. She declares that she will pass healthcare reform.

    It also seems unfair to me how you claim that Ron Paul is reducing the debate to soundbites. It appears that you qualify that statement later in your comments by confining the criticism to his foreign policy platform. His position is more detailed than the prevailing “good vs. evil” platform of Giuliani’s campaign – and is no less detailed than what the other candidates are offering.

    What do you want him to do? Write a book about it? He has. I appreciate your point about arming the Afghanis and believe America and its foriegn policy would benefit from a lively debate about the unintended effects of foreign policy policies (including the unintended effects of a non-interventionist policy).

    Would you at least agree that he’s adding value to the state of political discourse if you don’t perhaps view him as a viable or desirable presidential candidate?

  • Brian Middleton

    Gonzo wrote:
    “earlier, one Commenter tried to conflate some U.S. policies to “the Communist Manifesto”, that one really bloggled my Mind…”

    That was I. Well, if you did some reading you might come to that conclusion.

    Let’s see what Marx had in mind with his 10 planks:

    1. Abolition of private property and the application of all rent to public purpose.
    Comment: Dare I say eminent domain, and also how many owners do we actually have today, except a few? Most people either rent or are enslaved to the bank on a mortgage they probably never will be able to pay off.
    2. A heavy progressive or graduated income tax.on earnings
    Amendment 16th, US Constitution. We went from 1% on an exemption that equals $60K today in 1913 to NOW about 30% with a $6500 exemption. Go figure, but that is graduated.
    3. Abolition of all rights of inheritance: Limitation of private property through progressive taxation, heavy inheritance taxes, abolition of inheritance through collateral lines
    Federal & State estate Tax (1916); or reformed Probate Laws, and limited inheritance via arbitrary inheritance tax statutes.
    4. Confiscation of the property of all emigrants and rebels against the majority of the people.
    IRS, seizures without due process.
    5. Centralization of credit in the hands of the State, by means of a national bank with state capital and an exclusive monopoly

    The Federal Reserve Bank.

    6. Centralization of the means of communication and transportation in the hands of the State.
    Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and Department of Transportation (DOT) mandated through the ICC act of 1887, the Commissions Act of 1934, The Interstate Commerce Commission established in 1938, The Federal Aviation Administration, Federal Communications Commission, and Driver’s licenses control the highways at the state level.
    7. Extension of factories and instruments of production owned by the State, the bringing into cultivation of waste lands, and the improvement of the soil generally in accordance with a common plan.
    8. Equal liability of all to labor. Establishment of Industrial armies, especially for agriculture.
    Social Security.
    9. Combination of agriculture with manufacturing industries; gradual abolition of the distinction between town and country by a more equable distribution of the population over the country.
    10. Education of all children, from the moment they can leave their mother’s care, in national establishments at national cost. Education and production together

    Public School.

    Note, that NONE of these things were part of the Constitution, not did nay of the founding fathers intent to implement such policies. So ask yourself, are we not closer to a communist/socialist society than the vision of the founding fathers? VOTE RON PAUL 2008

  • DavidG

    Ok, ok, I see how this works. Create a blog, get advertising on the blog and then write something to infuriate Ron Paul supporters. Then profit from all the blog hits. Brilliant!

    I’m not sure why they fall for it everytime.

  • Freewheeler

    Gonzo,

    I don’t believe libertarian to be extreme. Of course I may be biased, but there are those anarchists.

    As for Fed research, why should we believe that internal Federal research would have results any different than Federal funded research. You cite some examples such as the internet and various contributions from NASA. I, and other libertarians, would make the arguement that these things would have been produced by the market as the need for them arised, and they would have been better and cheaper. The Federal Government does not have the expertise or true incentive to discover and develop these things. Often, these ideas are born out of the market and then taken by the Federal Government as their own. The Fed did not create the internet. Although, Al Gore would like to think otherwise.

    A serious problem I believe that exists with Federal funding and the debates over federal spending is that they only go one way. Government has grown every year since the beginning of the 20th century. When things such as the Deparment of Education or Homeland Security are brought up by some as wasteful and counter-productive, they are tossed to the curb as extremists and wanting to “hurt the children”. Free market solutions are almost never actually considered. And why should it? With this government stands to lose, as do the interest groups who stand to benefit.

  • devils.advocate

    TYPICAL SMEAR article and absolutely wrong on so many points. Dr. Ron Paul has NO ILLUSIONS that one man can change the system overnight. This he states over and over again and we supporters realize that. As Commander and Chief of the Armed Forces he can get our troops home from Iraq which is probably first and foremost on our minds. He can effect *some* policies in government and perhaps get OTHER TO JUMP ON HIS BANDWAGON TO ABOLISH FEMA, DEPT OF HOMELAND INSECURITY, THE PATRIOT ACT, etc. etc. etc. AND HE IS TRANSLATING INTO REAL VOTES NOW THAT HE HAS FINALLY started to spend money… He waited until it counts instead of throwing away Millions like Romney and Ghuliani did in early on Caucuses…
    SMART MORE that is now translating into votes…
    Just wait until Dec 16th when we raise TEN MILLION DOLLARS FOR THE RON PAUL TEA PARTY… jump on board and donate that day…. wait til the media gets aload of THIS MONEY BOMB… be a part of history!

  • Freewheeler

    By the way, can someone please explain to me how it could possibly be argued that we need social security??? This is simply a way to finance the government with interest free loans (negative real interest rate). Why should I be forced to throw my constantly devaluing money into a box in the ground to get back when I am older? Let’s give they money back to the people who put into it and abolish it. Or if you want to keep it, allow others to not use it if they don’t want to.

    Most socialist policies I can at least see how someone can make the arguement, however misguided. But this, I just can’t wrap my head around.

  • DavidG

    I don’t think you get it. Ron Paul understands how government works. He is a US congressman. You think Paul wants to be a dictator when time and again he says he wants to reduce the power of the presidency the way the founders intended. He knows he can not single handedly abolish departments set up by congress. However he can work with congress to reduce the size or even eliminate departments should congress decide to.

    I think what is amusing is you don’t understand how government works. The president isn’t a dictator (hence the reason why Ron Paul is running, to curtail the power of the presidency). And congress isn’t full of libertarian republicans. Ron Paul has acknowledged he can change only several things as president:

    Foreign policy, the movement of our troops and court appointments.

    Everything else depends on what congress wishes to do gto work with Ron Paul. So yes, while in an ideal world he would like to eliminate certain departments, he also knows the reality of who occupies congress. The fact you and other detractors can’t grasp that reality scares the heck out of me.

    So I am voting for a man with principled integrity who can move our troops away from Iraq who will work to stop runaway congressional spending and work to cut or eliminate income taxes.

    When Ronald Reagan ran for president in 1976, Ron Paul was only one of four congressmen to support his candidacy. Was Ron crazy then? Or ahead of his time?

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    Freewheeler – we need top be able to agree on definitions as well as Facts here for the discussion to progress…

    in the realm of the Internet, it most assuredly was a product of the Fed funding and military R&D

    try this for starters

    now , the WEB was a product of CERN, but the underlying tech comes form ARPA

    hope that clears things up on that front

    now, i must clarify…i don’t think either libertarians or socialists as a whole are “extreme”, there are positions from each i can easily agree with (healthcare/education on one hand, and none of the above on the other , as an example)…

    but there ARE many *extreme* positions held by some in each faction

    NO single faction is or should be in charge of the U.S.

    by the definition of our Declaration and Constitution, the exact opposite is true

    it’s the process of debate, discussion, and fact finding/checking that steers the ship of State

    and i wouldn’t have it any other Way

    you might be Interested in this site in order to help with political definitions

    Excelsior?

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Brian (#23), why do you think I need my mind changed about Ron Paul? My article was primarily about his supporters, not the candidate himself. My complaints about Paul himself are minor, and my primary objection is that he won’t appeal to enough mainstream voters to win the presidency. Of course, I don’t think he’ll appeal to enough voters to win the primary, either, so it’s a moot point.

    There’s really nothing needed to change my mind about Paul, but… well, I’d like him a little more if his supporters hadn’t taken over several sites I used to enjoy reading. Could you do anything about that? ;-)

  • bliffle

    I’ve listened to Paul speak and I’ve watched him interviewed whenever I could, and I’m just not impressed. It seems to me he isn’t interested in digging into problems, coming up with ideas, entertaining alternatives, talking out scenarios and finding solutions to problems. I fear that he’s just another one-idea zealot who will substitute slogans for real ideas, and end up unable to handle what doesn’t fit into his preconceptions.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    It took until #31 for the phrase “open mind” to come up. I think I lost a bet. I thought I’d see that one early and often!

  • John J.

    This site would be a wonderful place for opinion if the dogone ad strip (can’t delete it) didn’t carry on down the middle of the opinion page. Sorry, I guess I’m just not computer savey enough to eliminate this ad window.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Brian #34, I’m not sure you’ve realized this, but I’m trying to respond to comments more or less in order. So if you’ve posted something in, say #34, but I’m still responding to comments earlier than yours, like #27, that doesn’t mean I’m ignoring you.

    I think I’ve responded to the issue you’ve brought up, at least up through #34. I certainly haven’t been spending time focusing on Paul’s poll numbers, except to respond to you, so I’m not sure where you’re coming from here.

    If you’d like answers to any questions you’ve asked through #34, please ask them again (after #34), because I missed them somehow.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    gao xia en (#36), that’s a neat trick! I’d have tried that, but this site has a 200-word minimum article length, and requires more substance to boot. I’ll have to wait for someone else to write an article on the topic of Ron Paul supporters to try your comment trick. Thanks!

  • Brian Middleton

    Phillip wrote: “ My article was primarily about his supporters, not the candidate himself. My complaints about Paul himself are minor, and my primary objection is that he won’t appeal to enough mainstream voters to win the presidency.”

    Why didn’t you say that in your article? Your article paints him as a nut job that SHOULD not run for President? That doesn’t sound like you are just after his supporters. Perhaps this blog is beginning to change your mind?

    If you are not concerned about Ron Paul or you think he has no chance of winning, why bother writing about him? Write about the candidates that you think actually can win. Instead of poking fun of Dr. Paul. Perhaps because he is gaining support, but if that is so and you say you relaly don’t have problem with him, why not support his gain, or better, him?

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    Freewheeler in #60 asks – “By the way, can someone please explain to me how it could possibly be argued that we need social security???”

    ask a disabled, blind person…or a retired person whose company pension disappeared due to bankruptcy of the corp, or other Trickery by the officers of a corp (the airlines are a recent example)

    those types of instance alone are sufficient for a society that holds one of it’s prime tenets to be “promote the General Welfare”

    there are also many instances where Fed regulation is required for the protection of the Individuals against mismanagement/criminal behavior of corporations

    dumping of toxic substances into the environment and other safety concerns are simple examples

    can our Government be pared down, remove pork and make many of these things more efficient?

    of course

    but to abolish many of these services and leave the Individual to the non-existent mercies of the profit motive alone is completely illogical and not rational at all

    working together to resolve issues and solve problems is part and parcel of the secular Covenant of our Constitution

    Excelsior?

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    freewheeler (#37), on the one hand, yes, Paul obviously does not intend to establish a dictatorship in the United States. On the other hand, his campaign platform is built on something a little more specific than “I’ll work with Congress to do more of the same.” When a politician says, “I’m going to cut taxes” or “I’m going to raise taxes,” one figures he or she may have a political battle on their hands. When a politician proposes eliminating personal income tax entirely, well, that’s just not something one calls in favors to get passed, you know?

    Eliminating the Department of Education, a goal of Paul’s, is only feasible under a dictatorship. Collective bargaining with the teachers union (the NEA) ensures that even major reforms are blocked.

    I could give many more examples, but I think those demonstrate the point. If Paul wants to help shift culture, he should understand — and maybe he does — that such a thing is many decades in the making, and he’s not even really gotten started yet.

    From zero to hero? He’ll have to run a dozen more times first, and he’s not young.

  • Freewheeler

    Gonzo,

    I do not have the time right now to look through that Wikipedia article. However, it does interest me and I will read it through later.

    Even if the internet was ‘created’ or ‘born’ out of ideas from internal Federal research, it doesn’t change the fact that as a whole, Federal research will never be as productive and efficient as the private sector. While I am sure the internet would be here even if they had not done what you claim, kudos to them for contributing to something. But when you dump so much resources into an area, your bound to have some results. My arguement is that they will never be as positive as free market solutions. Additionally, why should the government be allowed to take taxpayers money for use of these things.

    And I don’t know where your going with saying no single faction should run the country…..what’s your point? I don’t make this claim. What should run the country is the parameters of government reach as described in the Constitution. Even if Government gives us some things that are good, this was never the intention of Government by our founders….to ‘give’ us things. It opens the door for them to take more and more power and reduce our freedoms. This would include taxes.

    And I don’t know if to take insult with that last line or not. I will ignore it for now I guess…

  • Brian Middleton

    Gonzo wrote:

    “ask a disabled, blind person…or a retired person whose company pension disappeared due to bankruptcy of the corp, or other Trickery by the officers of a corp (the airlines are a recent example)”

    First, you are under the erroneous assumption that Dr. Paul would get rid out these programs cold turkey. That is far fro true and he repeatedly states that.

    Second, why do you think forced contributions are good? What is the difference between the person in need putting a gun to your head demanding you help, than having the Government intervene and with the same effect, i./e. the threat of imprisonment?

    What’s wrong with charity? The church and other non profit organizations seem to be doing great doing just that without it being forced.

  • devils.advocate

    Again Dr. Ron Paul has been smeared when it comes to Social Security – He has said NOTHING about abolishing it. He merely wants to give the people the option to back out of it. Besides its being depleted quickly and our children wont get much if anything out of it anyways. Of course the $2 trillion dollars spend on the Iraq war would have gone along way to bump up the Social Security Accounts but NOOOOO we spend it on the OTHER SIDE OF THE WORLD to protect us from Weapons of Mass Deception… Dr. Paul is not a fanatic or an idiot – 10 terms as congressmen?? He knows the system well. His thoughts on the main issues like War, Federal deficit, devaluating dollar etc. etc. are well documented and well supported by even the likes of Mr. Greenspan… so who are YOU Phillip to say you know better than he does. If there was *one* correct answer to many of the governmental problems seems people would be smart enough to use it…

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Mike (#39), you’re far too thoughtful to be a typical Paul supporter! :-)

    Unfortunately, I don’t think our federal government is structured to allow for truly sensible discussion of anything like energy or technology policies. That would be nice, though.

    The War of 1812 fascinates me for many of the same reasons you mention. It does demonstrate that American wars have been fought poorly and for poor reasons from just about day one, doesn’t it?

    Anyway, I’m not sure I get what you mean about my “last argument” regarding polling numbers. In the article? In the comments?

    One common argument I hear — though I’m not sure you’re making it — is that it’s foolish to ignore someone like Paul, because if everybody who thinks Paul has no chance would just vote for him anyway, why, he’d end up with 70% of the vote! Of course, I’ve heard this for at least a dozen candidates at the Presidential level over the years, and even caught myself saying it when Kinky Friedman was running for Governor of Texas. It’s nonsense, though, for precisely the reason you state: it takes decades — or an especially humiliating defeat — to change priorities in a political party.

    If Giuliani wins the nomination and fails to carry even New York, that would be the sort of large-scale failure required, but even then I’m not sure that ignoring Paul’s policy proscriptions would be seen as the cause, but rather Giuliani’s support of abortion and various “moral issues.”

  • Freewheeler

    Phillip,
    Paul is not where our loyolty necessarily lies, but the message he conveys. It just so happens that he is probably the best representative in decades to carry that message.

    He is more than aware that certain things cannot be done by him. And he doesn’t have a blind faith that he will win the Presidency and then everything will be resolved. But as of now, there is no one that carries this message that is in a true position of power. Even if he doesn’t win, as this board is demonstrating, this movement is a means to move in the right direction. And striking down his ideas stating that he doesn’t understand how the system works is wrong. He has said many times, there needs to be transitions and as they occur, people will begin to see the waste that government has spread over us.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    Brian sez – “What’s wrong with charity? The church and other non profit organizations seem to be doing great doing just that without it being forced.”

    bullshit

    ask anyone who survived the Great Depression

    Freewheeler sez – “My arguement is that they will never be as positive as free market solutions.”

    show your proof for that Postulate and we can talk..i cited and linked to examples demonstrating mine, you have yet to refute it with anything more substantial than Opinion…

    i require objective evidence to influence my decision making, not Ideology…no matter how well intentioned

    Excelsior?

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    just a Thought

    Excelsior?

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Brian (#41), first you refer to a press release from the Paul campaign as “the real Press,” and now you give me “a straight forward fact based article” that’s three short paragraphs basically amounting to a press release from Iowegians for Paul ’08, linked on a site that’s populated almost entirely by similar Paul advocacy articles.

    Hilarious!

    Not much for the concept of press integrity, are you? There’s a difference between reporting and advocacy. Mine is an opinion article, but I still think it falls into a different category than the pure marketing fluff to which you’ve linked!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    1 vote (#42), your comment, by virtue of timing, contains the ultimate answer to life, the universe, and everything. And you spend it declaring that? Really?

    -squeak-

  • Freewheeler

    Gonzo in #73 writes: “ask a disabled, blind person…or a retired person whose company pension disappeared due to bankruptcy of the corp, or other Trickery by the officers of a corp (the airlines are a recent example)”

    But correct me if I’m wrong, these disabled, blind, or retired people only get out of SS what they put in. It is literally like putting your money in a box in your backyard. Except your not allowed to dig it up until your what, 103 years old now, and by then inflation has taken all its worth. A dollar today has the purchasing power of 4 cents in 1913(year Fed was created and 16 amendment).

    This is not helping these people!

  • Go Ron Go

    It’s great when bloggers try and attack Paul they try so hard yet have no ammo. Try and find dirt on all the other candidates matter of fact the dirt from the other candidates will find you first. Ron Paul stands for the constitution not under it.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Vegan (#44), I disagree about the relative position of the U.S., both compared to other countries around the world and compared to the U.S. historically. I appreciate that you believe we’re at the bottom, but I don’t.

    As far as tax cuts, I’m generally for them, though nobody actually asked. You supported the Bush tax cuts, right? Of course, tax cuts are better when they’re accompanied by spending cuts, and Bush spends like it’s not his money.

    Oh, wait.

  • Freewheeler

    Gonzo,

    I agree non-profit charities do not have the power government agencies do. This is because they are crowded out and cannot compete.

    You want ‘actual support’ for my arguements, I don’t know where to begin….

    I suppose the best start I can think of is John Stossel’s “John Stossel Goes to Washington“. There are 6 parts…sorry for the length.

    And just for the record, Ron Paul does make an appearance, but I saw this 4 years ago, well before I even knew who he was.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Brian (#45), I should probably have quit responding to your comments long before now, given how none of them have survived the sniff test, but I’ll say it again: if you’ve got something to say that I haven’t responded to before #45, please repeat it. Far from seeing how any of my erroneous conclusions have been corrected, I think I’ve spent more than a little time instructing you on what you yourself have said. But hey, I’ll keep reading.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Gonzo (#46), I knew we couldn’t agree forever! ;-)

    On the one hand, I’m a big fan of NASA for many reasons (and a big hater for other reasons), but on the other hand, is that the best use of federal funds? In an age in which private companies vie to put people into space, do we need NASA?

    It’s funny to me, but back when I was a Libertarian, NASA was near the top of my list to axe. Now that I’ve softened a bit, it seems like it actually provides (at least in the past) a decent return on spending, from a purely pragmatic perspective.

  • YBturk

    Very simple explanation. Phillip is deeply (and I mean deeply) in debt. He needs the Fed to really inflate the money supply and devalue the dollar significantly over the next few years so that he can repay that debt with hyper-inflated dollars.

    It’s his only way out.

    Since Ron Paul would stabilize the money supply and essentially halt the Fed in it’s inflationary phase, Phillip would still be in deep doodoo. Hence his hatred of Ron Paul.

    Also, he likely receives a big portion of his income from dividends on his Halliburton stock — which would likely crash within weeks of Ron Paul taking office. So he’d be in double deep doodoo.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    Freewheeler sez – “This is because they are crowded out and cannot compete. “

    no offense, but that statement is complete bullshit

    NO ONE is stopping ANY charitable organization from giving to anyone…the very idea that someone form the government is going to try and stop anyone from giving is ridiculous, such charity is even tax deductable in many instances

    i appreciate the discourse, but it appears we just cannot agree upon some basic objective reality

    interesting that you have “no time” to peruse the link i provided to prove an earlier statement, yet you have plenty to hang on this thread and argue using unsubstantiated opinions…

    Question, do you work for the campaign?

    Excelsior?

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Bubbleskid (#47), I didn’t pick “one statistic,” I picked the main statistic – national poll results. People picking individual states, or hypothetical races, that’s cherry-picking. I’m summarizing. There’s a difference.

    Straw polls are primarily fund-raisers, and rarely a good predictor of eventual general election results.

    It’s common to hope that one’s candidate’s biggest problem is a lack of name recognition, but it usually isn’t true. If Paul manages to become more well know, it’s as likely his poll numbers would drop as rise. Outside of the militia movement and college campuses, there’s not as wide support for Paul’s policies as one might hope.

    The “Dr. No” label isn’t based on Paul voting “no” on every bill, but he used to claim that he votes “no” on every spending bill, which obviously is no longer the case. He’s voted specifically for increased federal spending on several things that aren’t clearly spelled out in the U.S. Constitution, which was a bit of a surprise to me when I began researching this article a few days ago. I don’t mean the fence in this case, by the way. That one could be argued to be part of national defense. Section 8 housing vouchers, though? I’d love to hear his reasoning behind that vote!

    I’m glad you recognize Paul won’t manage to accomplish his life’s work within his first week in office. I wish you’d let other Paul supporters know that!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Fazsha (#48), you get it! Somebody gets it!

    I do draw a distinction between Giuliani and Paul in this way: Giuliani’s budget proposals would be debated, tweaked, expanded, and passed. Paul’s budget proposals would be rejected and replaced completely with budget proposals more in line with what we usually get stuck with.

    Congress controls the power of the purse, but lets President think they have some influence only as long as the President proposes something close to what Congress really wants. Giuliani would do that. Paul wouldn’t. I’m not sure Paul, or at least Paul supporters, see the difference.

  • Freewheeler

    Gonzo, it is disappointing that an attempt at actual discourse is met like this. I fundamentally disagree with your view on the role and effects of government. But I understand why people feel this way and try to keep things cordial. No, believe it or not, I am not for the Paul campaign.

    The concept of government crowding out private investments such as charities is far from a radical view. I suspect you have very little understanding of economics and the many fallacies of intervention.

    However, your in luck. That video I sent you, that you obviously did not watch (despite mocking me for not reading your article)has a portion that addresses private charities and their struggles. And guess what, they have many times more problems from government than lack of support.

  • http://www.yeahbaby.com Haley Nelson

    You know what’s funny? Everyone keeps talking about what an internet phenomenon Ron Paul is, which is 100% true. They also talk about how – in the real world – he doesn’t stand a chance.
    But what these people are forgetting is that 70% of Americans use the internet.
    So… the fact that Ron Paul is a hit online, um, those people don’t count?
    Come ON journalists- think of something else to attack him! You should be able to do better than that!

    Go Ron Paul!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    martin (#50), that was the line that turned you off? So late in the article? I know I edited out some of the more incendiary stuff between yesterday and today, but I was pretty sure I’d left in some zingers!

    Seriously, I’m guessing you’re not close to my age, or you’d recognize “we’d all be speaking Russian” as shorthand, slang for losing the Cold War. Obviously it’s not to be taken literally. We’d all be speaking Spanish, same as now.

    ;-)

  • Jake Coleman

    I think Ron Paul’s supporters are a fairly diverse lot, and many feel strongly about single issues (as you have said in a demeaning, condescending sort of way). All presidents have to deal with congress, so its obvious that he can’t wave a magic wand and eliminate all the departments he dislikes. He’s the only candidate who talks about real change in our federal drug laws, and this is an important issue to many people. Drug prohibition causes so much more damage than drugs do. The only way to massively reduce the violence (here and in Latin America) is to legalize and regulate the trade. I don’t want any more drug dealer shootings in my neighborhood. I do want to be able to keep my handgun and carry permit, and Ron Paul is a strong advocate of the right to self-defense. Taxes? I’m used to paying them. The Fed? Maybe its bad, maybe its wonderful. Its not a concern of mine. Either way, I’m voting for Ron Paul in my state’s primary because he represents me on issues that I care about, not because I think he’s going to win.

  • Freewheeler

    Gonzo,

    By the way, I have a degree in economics and continuously educate myself through reading and other sources. I do not have ‘unsubstantiated’ opinions. I simply do not fee like writing a book on this board. And I would not call references to Wikipedia as substantiating your arguement. I have read the works of economists like Mises, Hayek, and Friedman. I do not say this to mock you, but to defend myself from you.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    Freewheeler, you are mistaken here…

    first, you have no clue as to my position on government and it’s role…merely soem comments about very specific examples

    second..i was not “mocking” you..merely observing a simple fact
    this quote from you – “I suspect you have very little understanding of economics and the many fallacies of intervention.”

    demonstrates your ignorance as well as your bias against actual discourse

    and as another aside, i’m partway through the video..and could spend a day agreeing with parts, and debunking others

    enjoy your day

    Excelsior?

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Matthew Clark (#51), thank you for your thoughtful comment!

    If the four leading candidates were to somehow die or become incapacitated and Paul won the Republican nomination (I’m assuming Paul can get up to fifth place in the next 11 months), I’d vote for him. I’m not happy with the status quo, and I don’t know anyone who is. Of course, for half of my friends the answer is more spending, and for half its less. Perhaps it really is just the same amount of spending but on totally different priorities. My point is: don’t mistake a resistance to radical idealism for comfort in the status quo.

    If Paul want to make a change, he should write more books. Campaigning for President just sets up yet another generation to have their hopes for future of the country crushed.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    since another comment came up while i was writing…

    Freewheeler sez – “I do not have ‘unsubstantiated’ opinions”

    this may well be the case, what i stated was that you have NOT substantiated those Opinions here in the medium of our discourse

    to wit – merely because you state that you are an expert in economics does NOT establish or substantiate the claim…not that i don’t believe you, but it is clearly and objectively unsubstantiated

    hope that clears some things up

    Excelsior?

  • Mike

    Ah you ridiculous fool.

    Ron Paul is against coercion, and he is against unconstitutonal federal programs.

    1) coercion. Any time the government wants to provide a service, it must raise money by taxing citizens. Citizens are coerced into handing their money over at the threat of facing prison sentences/fines. Coercion is completely immoral. Nothing justifies it. The proper role of government is to raise a minimum amount of taxes in order to have the apparatus in place to protect people’s liberty from those who would subject them to coercion. This means funding police, courts and a military. Anything beyond that is unnecessary coercion and is completely immoral.

    Remember, one can’t have a “right” to healthcare, or education, because rights are created by social contract, and one can’t create a social contract that can give you anything material like food, water or healthcare without violating others’ rights to their labor.

    I conclude this section with the following:

    “How soon we forget history… Government is not reason. Government is not eloquence. It is force. And, like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master.” -George Washington

    2) Unconstitutonal federal programs. Even if you believe in coercion against innocent people to provide material things like food, water and health care, you should not advocate politicians breaking their oath to the Constitution and having the federal government providing these things. The Constitution gives the federal government very limited powers, which are basically meant to keep the states in a union and protected from mutual outside threats. The federal government was never meant to dictate domestic economic policy. The Constitution explicitly states that all powers not granted by it to the federal government are reserved by the State governments and the people. Therefore, if you believe in any socialist policy, you should advocate it at the State level, not the federal level. Trying to homogenize a nation of 300 million people with one set of economic policies is stupid and ineffective. It’s time to respect the federated model that the Constitution espouses.

    I want to conclude with this eye opener about how fucked America is now:

    ————————–
    Washington is all about the money, he writes. In 2005, the Census Bureau listed seven suburban counties around the capital as among the 20 richest in the country. And it’s not just Republicans cashing in on their service. “Upon leaving office,” he notes, “more than half of the senior officials in the Clinton administration became corporate lobbyists.”
    —————————-

    The nation’s comptroller, the government’s top accountant, says that there is no doubt that the nation will collapse in the coming 3 decades if present trends continue. Everyone in Washington is too busy getting rich off of the trillions in tax revenues to bother doing anything about it, everyone except Ron Paul.

  • troll

    gonzo – *it’s the process of debate, discussion, and fact finding/checking that steers the ship of State*

    …and you think I’m a dreamer

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    jmklein (#53), it’s like the good comments cluster together when Brian takes a lunch break, or something!

    Giuliani is campaigning to demonstrate that one can be a Republican and support abortion. Paul is campaigning to demonstrate that one can be a Republican and support decriminalization (yay!) and withdrawl from Iraq (meh!). I’m not sure either will accomplish what he expects even if he succeeds! Republicans have generally been against wars started by Democrats (see Clinton, Bill). Republicans have run on small-government platforms before (see Reagan, Ronald). It’s really only decriminalization that’s new, and I expect that to happen someday, but I make no predictions about which party will finally lead the charge.

    Actually, I suspect it will be the Republicans, because the Democrats can’t, if you know what I mean. Sometimes politicians of one party can do things their own party wouldn’t allow the opposition to do.

  • Mike

    Foreign Policy:

    If you want to under Ron Paul’s foreign policy, and if you want to understand how the Soviet Union would have collapsed a lot sooner if the US had followed the foreign policy Ron paul advocates, read Ron Paul’s book, “A foreign policy of freedom”:

    —–
    Foreign Policy of Freedom

    There is one and only one voice in Congress for a foreign policy of freedom, and it belongs to Ron Paul, who has stood alone for freedom for many years. Ron is the seemingly impossible: a voice for reason and truth in a den of thieves.

    A Foreign Policy of Freedom is his 372-page manifesto, a collection of inspired statements to the House of Representatives that show him to be the most consistent and morally responsible politician, perhaps, in the whole of American history.

    This book takes on a special significance with his 2008 run for the US presidency. Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr., writes the introduction.

    Recently, you might have heard Ron condemning foreign aid, the Iraq War, our vast and needlessly growing military budgets, bombings of this country and that, troops in most all countries in the world, and all the other meddlesome activities of the US empire. This foreign policy, Congressman Paul has pointed out, is contrary to American ideals, diminishes American liberty, and ends up making worse the very problems it seeks to alleviate.

    But did you know that Ron has been delivering this message through thick and thin from his first day in Congress in 1976 until the present day? That’s 31 years of prophetic warnings, 31 years of courageous stands against the tide, 31 years of being proven right by subsequent events. There are no flip-flops, backpeddles, regrets, or coverups. He has told the truth again and again, no matter what it cost him.

    In the middle of the Cold War, he decried the endless streams of subsidies from the US to communist governments. At the same time, he stood firm against aid to insurgents seeking to overthrow those regimes. He sensibly pointed out that the Soviet Union would collapse if it had to face financial reality, and an end to US aid would make that possible. He has been a stickler on the power of the presidency, refusing to grant the president authority to start wars without Congressional approval.

    Herein you will find a chronicle of hypocrisy. Paul condemned the policy that subsidized Saddam Hussein, and the policy that waged war on Iraq and killed Saddam. The same is true of Noriega in Panama and the “freedom fighters” in Afghanistan who later made up the shock troops of Al-Qaeda.

    “Our experiment with foreign policy interventionism has failed, just as our experience with domestic economic interventionism has failed,” he said in 1982.

    He said the same in mid-1990s.

    “War, and the threat of war, are big government’s best friend,” he wrote only recently. “Liberals support big government social programs, and conservatives support big government war policies, thus satisfying two major special interest groups. And when push comes to shove, the two groups cooperate and support big government across the board — always at the expense of personal liberty. Both sides pay lip service to freedom, but neither stands against the welfare-warfare state and its promises of unlimited entitlements and endless war.”

    In many ways, this book is a history of a quarter century of folly, told by a man who saw what others did not, and had the temerity to state his view publicly. No voice for peace has been as consistent in the demand that government stop its intervention across the board. No supporter of free markets has been so determined to apply the logic of liberty to all aspects of foreign policy.

    This book makes Ron Paul’s place in history. There has never been anything so forthright, truth telling, and ultimately devastating from a US politician. Not since Taft has there been a book like this, and this one makes Taft’s own classic seems vague and abstract by comparison.

  • Anthony

    the only thing ron paul could do to stop abortion is appoint judges who are anti-roe v wade and get the federal ruling on abortion lifted. that stops taxpayer funded abortion. if you OWN state still likes abortions, that’s nice. you can get all the abortions you want there from a private physician. if your state doesn’t like abortion, drive to a state that’s “cool” with it.

    everyone’s happy.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Matt (#54), good point. I do think there’s a difference between proposing a course change of a few degrees (where one can speak with better than even certainty that the course change will go through) and proposing a full stop and reverse at 20 knots (where one has better odds of sprouting a third arm).

    Hillary Clinton has, I think, a 50/50 chance of passing decent health care reform, and probably an 80-90% chance of passing *some* kind of health care reform. Paul has roughly a 1% chance of shutting down even a single one of the many departments he’s proposed shutting down.

    I do think Paul is contributing to good political discussion. His supporters, by and large, not so much.

    I’d even be willing to spend some time having a discussion about one or more of Paul’s books in the coming year. Maybe a weekly 30 minute radio show? I’ve got the technical means at my disposal, so I’ll keep it in mind.

  • Vegan

    Maybe some countries view us favorably, but where do you make the case that we aren’t on the world’s sh*t list? I have some friends from India, Mexico, Nigeria, Russia, Laos, and god knows where else, and they all same the same thing – other countries either detest the US for being the moral bully, or they fear the US for being the moral bully. Folks in other countries that I keep in contact with for activism purposes (I agitate for change, but never saw the government as an effective tool for that…) have all come back with the same view too.

  • Tina

    Ron Paul supporters WILL show up at the polls, just as they do every day of the week to wave signs and get the word out. That is the main difference between Paul supporters and supporters of other “candidates” – we are not a bunch of lazy people regardless of how losers like you try to portray us. We actually care about this country more than the TV and our bag of chips. You all will be eating your words, then losing your pathetic jobs when he is elected.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    DavidG (#55), Barnum once said that nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public. I wouldn’t put it in quite such stark terms, but I’m not quite sure why “they” fall for it every time, either.

    No, I’m teasing. I’m grateful to have a platform to write about something that has been bugging me, and for the platform to have high standard so that I had to research and rewrite the article a few times to make it cogent and concise. Well, more cogent and concise than when I started, anyway!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Brian (#57-58), I think I’m going to stay out of general discussion of Libertarianism, at least this week. I used to be a pretty hardcore Libertarian. Had a web page and everything. (Note to self: make sure that page is offline.)

    An ex-Libertarian is like an ex-smoker. We can be nasty, and it’s not always fair. :-)

  • Dean

    How come I still can’t find one article of an anti-Paul person explaining why their candidate is better?

    No one dissects the other candidates like they do Paul. We can barely even get a straight answer from the others…seriously. It’s as if we accept them as hot air and pander. But when one candidate is to the point, doesn’t flip-flop or bullsh*t us – they are crucified.

    Now I want Ron more than ever to lead us. This is crazy…….

  • Mike

    “.Let’s step back a moment and realize that we’re talking about a man who seems to believe that the U.S. President has the power to set the federal budget all by himself, and dissolve department after department of the government single-handedly. Health and Human Services?”

    Phillip you idiot, he doesn’t believe that. He has said over and over again that as president he CAN’T eliminate deparments without Congress’ cooperation. What he can do though is start withdrawing US troops from overseas bases thereby saving tens, if not hundreds of billions a year.

    He can also start vetoing new spending bills and thereby check the growth in government spending. This is very important, as it means lower deficits, and eventually a reduction in taxes as the economy grows and tax receipts increase. As an example, if government spending had stayed at 2000 levels, then by today the income tax could be eliminated with no change in the deficit.

  • Mike

    “How come I still can’t find one article of an anti-Paul person explaining why their candidate is better?”

    Exactly.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    devils.advocate (#59), you probably ought to confer with Brian and some others on this page before suggesting that Paul’s supporters “know” Paul can’t upend established political process. After decrying the expansion of the executive branch by the last several Presidents, some now seem to assume the President can do almost anything!

    Anyway, I appreciate you reading my “TYPICAL SMEAR article,” and I hope you can make time to list some of the many points I’ve gotten wrong. No hurry.

  • matt

    the federal employees would work for the state or private sector. his policy allows state to run their own programs, so instead if fed employees you would have state employees. the benefit to this is that blue states can truely be blue and red states can truely be red.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Freewheeler (#60), I’m not touching this one. Perhaps Gonzo will speak up. I think he’s close to collecting benefits. ;-)

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    DavidG (#61), so is it your assertion that the difference between Congressman Paul an President Paul is bringing the troops home from around the world? He can talk to Congress members more easily as a Congressman than as President, right? Separation of powers, and all that.

    So are you campaigning for Paul, or Kucinich? If we elect someone else who will bring all our troops home and leave Paul in Congress, aren’t we getting double benefits?

    Paul was definitely ahead of his time in supporting Reagan. I’m sad that he wants to destroy himself after watching Reagan do the same, but I suppose it’s a noble sacrifice. Fortunately, I don’t think he’ll be called upon to actually make it.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    I’ve caught up to myself at #63, and now I need to take another break, quite possible a very long one. I’ll try to catch up later.

  • Nathan

    I don’t know why I read useless stuff like this with opinions based on poor research. Paul has voted for spending in a few instances. He has explained those few votes: the money was going to be spent anyway and he voted to spend the money in the most wise fashion. See, it is attempts like this to down an opponent which only result in proving just how little credibility the attacker has.

  • Dean

    I think I’ve figured it out.

    Humans are creatures of habit. They prefer familiarity and comfort to change and progression.
    (patriot act is a big one, politics another…)

    It’s very unfamiliar to have a man basically change all we are used to. But it has to be done. Folks laugh him off..”he’s going to just do away with these departments and change our currency like that…” YES – That’s exactly what they did to us so long ago. But information was very limited and basically Americans didn’t have a choice.

    Your comfortable sleep may feel good for a while longer – but friends, open your eyes. We’re in decline, America is spread and thinning. It’s becoming obvious almost daily that the people we trust and elect really don’t care. We have let the original dream of America turn to a circus of spending and corruption, financed by our fellow Americans blood, sweat and tears. I don’t hate you, I’m just trying to wake you. If not Paul, fine, someone else – but acknowledge the elephant in the room, don’t deride the ones who care to notice and ask…

  • http://bcgoodiebag.com/ Anna Creech

    Interesting commentary, Philip. Thanks for the info, not that I would have voted for him, anyway. I sure hope you’re wearing asbestos undies and have an unlisted number. Seems you’ve brought the crazies out of the closet and into the sunlight.

  • Anthony

    i would say that the United States is certainly on a trendline of diminishing innovation and personal wealth. the future expansion of the tax-state will continue decelerating innovation as well as self-reliance. baseless foreign wars, occupations and nationbuilding will also accelerate the process.

    when people say “omg, the federal govt doesnt have THAT much power you paranoid freak!” they speak without grasping that the true power of federal govt lies in taxation and expansion into facets of your life that were previously controlled by you, the individual.

    the United States can stay powerful in the sense that we will still have our huge military, and unfortunately it looks like we’ll be using it a lot.

  • Joe

    “I don’t expect anybody to care, but I’m not looking for “corrections.”

    No kidding. Just spew out the nonsense and see what sticks. You suck.

  • http://www.buyingone.com Christopher Rose

    Enjoying your day off, Phillip?

  • jmklein

    There are much more nuanced solutions to our problems now, such as indefinite occupation of Iraq and printing even more currency.

    Like those are brilliant concepts.

  • CowboyTech

    How did you come to decide on a canidate you could support? I did it through research, First, I looked at what I didn’t like in the system and discovered where it originated from. Now to shorten this piece, I will come to the point! Of the canidates available in both parties that have their name on the membership of the CFR, they could not be in my Support list! Now I have a list of potentials, and it really got rid of the scum! That left Ron Paul as the Only canidate I can support!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    bliffle (#64), that’s certainly one possible assessment. I suspect he would say that he’s been in politics for 30 years and has finished the whole “figuring out what I believe” phase of his life, but he does sometimes seem like someone with a rather one-track mind. A nice quality to have in the opposition, but not really what I’d hope for in the leader of much of the free world.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    John J (#66), I’m sorry your view is obstructed by an ad strip. I’m not sure why that would be, as all ads should be separate from text, and nothing should continue to run down the page. :-(

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Brian (#69), have you ever thought about trying to answer your own questions? I think you’d find that you already have the answers to most of them!

    No, I’m not changing my mind on Paul or his supporters. You seem to have done your best to reinforce the idea of a typical Ron Paul supporter, so thanks for that!

    Why bother writing about him? Where were you at the beginning of your very own comment? My article was primarily about Paul’s supporters, and I write about *him* because of *them*, and I write about *them* because they’re vocal and persistent, as evidenced by your long chain of comments here.

    So my short answer is: I wrote this article for you, Brian. :-)

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Brian (#73), I’m trying to stay out of the general Libertarian issue, which aren’t the primary focus of this article. However, I’ll respond in part to a couple of things you asked:

    “What is the difference between the person in need putting a gun to your head demanding you help, than having the Government intervene and with the same effect, i./e. the threat of imprisonment?” There are several differences: 1. A government *ought* to apply a reasonable and consistent standard that an individual with a gun does not; 2. A government (unfortunately) knows intimately what my financial resources are, and the contributions they demand are proportionate; 3. Let’s say you’re speeding, driving really wildly, and you see the lights start warbling behind you. Chances are good you’re going to jail, so might you just as well have someone hold a gun to your head? Jail, assuming things actually went that far, would by unpleasant. A gun to the head is more than unpleasant, it’s immediately life-threatening and terrifying. It really is a big difference. Ask anyone who’s had a gun to their head (we *all* have the threat of jail time).

    You also asked “What’s wrong with charity? The church and other non profit organizations seem to be doing great doing just that without it being forced.” Yes and no. Giving to charities and provision by charities is only a small fraction of our current social security and medicare/medicaid expenditures. Could churches and other charities rise to the occasion if Social Security were eliminated? Frankly, I doubt it, but even the most rosy-eyed optimist must admit it would be difficult.

  • Jason

    The primary difference between the MSM and blogs is that blogs don’t do fact checking. Not that MSM doesn’t bloviate in hyperbolistic misinterpretation, but at least when called to task for blatant falsities they admit there mistakes. Phillip Winn’s editorial is so full of inaccuracies that its hard to digest.

    For instance

    In the first paragraph, he identifies Ron Paul as last in the polls. Though the polling chart he points to does indicate Ron Paul is last, but it fails to include on the chart Tom Tancredo, Alan Keyes, Duncan Hunter or the dozen or so even less well known candidates for the Republican nomination who aren’t even polling as well as Dr. Paul. Furthermore, Mr. Winn’s statement ignores the fact that 48% of Republicans coundn’t name a single Republican contender.

    Additionally, there is reason to suspect that the polls themselves may be biased in terms of older voters and not reflect the younger constituents.

    In the third paragraph, Mr. Winn questions why Dr. No voted to spend federal money. Here Mr. Winn confuses why Paul is known as Dr. No. He’s positions are available on his campaign site. It is not that he votes against spending, it is that he votes against spending that is NOT constitutionally authorized.

    Finally Mr. Winn assumes that Ron Paul thinks he can change the federal government overnight. This is not true and Dr. Paul has said so. In his extended interview on PBS he says that he will need the support of Congress to implement many of his changes and that his election will give Congress a heads up that the people want these changes.

  • http://gravelkucinichpaulnader.blogspot.com/ gravel kucinich paul nader

    Gravel kucinich paul nader perot carter [conyers?rangel?] united for truth elicit fear smear blacklist.

    The people know too much,
    democracy rising democracy now.
    Rage against the machine.

    Honesty compassion intelligence guts.

    No more extortion blackmail bribery division.
    Divided we fall.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    devils.advocate (#74), Paul’s current position is that taxes on SS income should be eliminated, but SS benefits left alone. One need only read the comments here to see that even some ardent Paul supporters see that as inconsistent with Paul’s declared values. Giving people the option to back out of it leaves it even more unfunded than it already is, and the entire Ponzi scheme collapses. The end result is no more SS, whether you love or hate that idea.

    Are you going on record as suggesting that none of the 535 members of Congress are fanatics or idiots? Seriously?

    I’m sorry for having an opinion on war (though I’ve not outlined my opinion), the federal deficit (which I haven’t mentioned), and the decrease in the valuation of the dollar (which I also haven’t mentioned). Apparently one must have served ten terms in Congress to have opinions on those subjects? It’s a good thing I didn’t bother to outline my positions on any of those things!

    I appreciate you reading the article. ‘Twould be nice to discuss that, rather than whatever you imagine I believe about economic policies I’ve not addressed, but friendly talking is fine.

  • Joshua Rubenstein

    This article offers no insight or substantive arguments. It only claims that such and such are Ron Paul’s views and because of that Ron Paul can’t be credible.

    The difference between people like you and Ron Paul is that Ron Paul’s claims are all backed up by reason, logic and the US constitution. Whereas yours are unsubstantiated and hollow.

    How easy it is to simply bash people in an unsubstantiated manner. Luckily Paul supporters are the cream of society, the most intelligent of the bunch, leading the way in ideas and ideals. So, they see through this bizarre rhetoric and put the author back in his place.

    There’s a difference between publishing crap and writing well. Sadly this piece of journalistic trash will quickly find its way to the dustbins of oblivion.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Freewheeler (#76), I can certainly appreciate that you are dedicate to Libertarian ideals, not blind loyalty to Paul himself. I don’t think you speak for all Paul supporters, or even most of them. After all, if all Paul supporters are Libertarians, you’ll never rise any higher in the polls!

    I remember Al Gore — Vice President of the United States — appearing on The Late Show with Dave Letterman — you may have heard of it — and talking about government waste. He was only talking about billions, rather than trillions, and only waste, not the absolute elimination of the majority of the government, but I would suggest that Al Gore might have been a decent representative to carry that message. Look where that got us!

    It’s all a very nice idea that it only takes a spark to get a fire going, but if you’d care to meet at the top of the Empire State Building in five years, I think you’ll find that whether Ron Paul wins or loses, things won’t have changed all that much.

    Ike has it right — it’s the MIC, or its equivalent. You can’t kill the beast from the inside.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Freewheeler (#81), if people could only get out what they’ve put into SS, we wouldn’t be so dramatically underwater right now!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Go (#82), that *is* great. It’s, like, totally amazing.

    There’s dirt all over the place, man. We should totally start a grow house!

    For vs under, that’s so profound. Good weed.

  • michael

    Your article is only meant to flame the fires of RP supporters. You probably recieved no attention as a child and are seeking it here. Enjoy the attention! I take these hit pieces for just what they are, smears and blather from folks that are not smart enough to understand the bigger picture or folks that just like poking sticks into a beehive. Which one are you Phil? You do a dis-service to your fellow citizens and your country writing this tripe. Grow up man and maybe get yourself a puppy.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    YBturk (#87), I’m right here. You could have asked!

    My only debt is in my home mortgage, and is less than my annual income. In fact, I should be out of debt completely, with my home paid off, by the time of the 2008 election. I have no credit car debt, no vehicle loans, nothing other than the mortgage. Since my earnings and debt are both in U.S. dollars, the devaluation of the dollar has no bearing except in how much of my income is tied up by rising costs of goods imported from elsewhere. Which would more than negate your point, come to think of it.

    If I was in this for pure self-interest, I’d cheer for the guy who wants to eliminate my personal income tax, wouldn’t I? Rather than angle for an obscure indirect long-term economic effect that doesn’t change the percentage of my income going toward my debt, wouldn’t I campaign for the direct economic effect that actually increases my income within a couple of years?

    No stock, either, just a very small amount in an index fund for retirement, because I don’t expect SS to be there for me.

    I guess you’ll have to look elsewhere for the reason for my hatred of Ron Paul. Start by trying to identify any evidence for my hatred of Ron Paul. Are you defining “hatred” as “anything other than a desire to engage in hagiography?”

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Haley (#92), let me do the math here… 100% of 70% is, oh, I’m confused. Isn’t it 70%? So Paul’s polling at 70%, right? That’s about what I think a Libertarian candidate *ought* to do in New Hampshire, so that’s about right…

    Or maybe, just maybe, you’re misusing statistics. Yes, lots of people use the internet. They don’t hang out on Reddit to see one of their formerly-favorite sites destroyed by a legion of mostly-youthful partisan hacks, though. They bank, they shop, they watch videos, they download music, they post evidence of a shallow gene pool on YouTube, and so on.

    The point is — as I said in the article — that many things are hits online without translating into the real world. Did you see the report than an enormous amount of Paul support apparently comes from overseas IP addresses? Maybe it’s spam, or maybe it’s millions of Russians honestly concerned about what happens in American politics. In either case, I don’t think it’s going to help Paul at the polls. It hasn’t so far.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Jake (#94), despite the fact that you said such mean things I almost cried, your position makes sense. You’re a weed-and-guns guy, and weed-and-guns guys want the Libertarian candidate. More power to you!

    I do wish more people understood the analogy between changing course and reversing direction, and why it’s a bigger issue for the candidates with extreme views, like Paul and Kucinich.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Freewheeler (#95), please forgive me, but citing three economists outside the mainstream as evidence of your bona fides is like saying you’re well educated on self defense because you’ve watched a lot of Larry, Curly, and Moe.

    Austrian economics, right or wrong, is a minority viewpoint. Perhaps someday that will change, but in the meantime, one earns a little better credibility by citing recognized authorities, not fringe players. When they move from the fringe to the mainstream, you can be ahead of your time. Until then, it just sounds silly.

  • Edward Keithly

    Phillip,

    I certainly hope you are a good technical writer, because your knowledge of politics clearly leaves a lot to be desired.

    To point out just one of your atrocious fallacies: Goldwater did win. He may have lost in the general election. But you ask any good conservative about 1964, they’ll tell you it was the best thing that the GOP ever did. Nobody who saw the culmination of the Goldwater movement, the election of Reagan, would tell you that nominating Goldwater was a mistake.

    Going down with a strong set of principles is preferable any day to selling them out and winning. Your claim of being a Reagan conservative is exposed as a lie if you refuse to see that.

  • Willem de Wit

    Phillip,

    There’s a lot of truth in your opinions/facts.

    Paul, although he is doing better, is not doing well in national polls (yet?). Young (first-time) voters have historically not been very active come voting day. Paul supporters can be fanatical.

    However, accusing him of giving sound bite answers to complex problems implies (a) that you have only heard Paul speak during the debates (where he is given very few opportunities to express his views) and/or read only the headlines of articles written about him (which usually talk about how little chance he has to win more so than providing Paul a chance to provide the in-depth answers you desire), (b) that you believe the other candidates provide in-depth answers instead (“They hate us for our freedoms.”; “I’ll have to check with my lawyers.”), and (c) that complicated problems always require complicated solutions.

    If you look a little deeper into Congressman Paul’s views, you’ll find that he is a lot more realistic about what he can and can’t accomplish as President Paul. Time and time again he states that his main objective as president would be to drastically change our foreign policy. Yes, he’d like to get rid of many departments in theory (because he does not believe the US Constitution grants the federal government the power to regulate things like energy, education, etc.), but in practice, he knows that these are issues that he won’t be able to accomplish in his first term.

    Note that although most of Paul’s supporters are a lot more aware of Paul’s views on the issues that most critics give them credit for, I do believe that many of them are not fully aware just what President Paul would be able to accomplish.

    I hope that Congressman Paul will write an article much like the late Harry Browne’s “The president’s first day in office”. This will give both his supporters and opponents a better idea of just the kind of president Ron Paul would make.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Mike (#99), flattery will get you nowhere!

    I’m well aware of the libertarian theory of coercion. You might want to chat with your buddy Ron Paul about a few of the votes he’s made that seem to indicate he’s forgotten some of this, but you and I, we can simply agree to disagree, and not as much as you might think.

    You must be a real winner at cocktail parties.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Mike (#102), I haven’t read the book, but your excerpt says a lot. I’m generally in favor of any political theory labeling itself as a “policy of freedom,” but it remains an untested theory at this point, so some caution seems sensible, no? Most untested theories don’t survive their first day in the real world unchanged.

  • Freewheeler

    #139
    Phillip,

    I was pointing out that I was not making up what I was arguing, that there was some backing. I understand Austrian economics is not mainstream…hardly needed that pointed out to me (although, Friedman is of the Chicago school). But who would you consider a “mainstream” economist anyway? Even if I did care more about popularity rather than content, who would you list as such?

    My arguement for Paul is that he is the RIGHT choice. Not the popular choice, or the mainstream choice, or the conventional choice, but from my personal learnings the right choice. That is the source of my disdain for people who hate on RP and this political system as a whole. The debate on issues today is no deeper for the President of the United States as it is the President of Ridgemont High.

  • Freewheeler

    Phillip (#133) – precisely what RP proposes. In fact, he argues he is the only one whose plan is viable enough to actually get the people their money back!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Anthony (#103), Paul is far from the only Republican candidate espousing such a view on abortion. I know people both for and against abortion that believe Roe v Wade is bad law and the issue should be left to the individual states. There’s at least one other candidate running with such a position, perhaps two. Heck, that’s apparently Bush’s position, for that matter.

  • andy

    Phillip,

    Paul said somewhere that for some things he would need consent of congress, on some others he could act as a president (‘foreign policy’). No, he does not think he can set the federal budget himself.

    As for the income tax – yes, you would have to save a lot. Probably not doable without consent of congress, however only ‘marching home’ from half of the world would proabably saved quite a lot.

    As for the fence on Mexico – he said he voted for the bill because of other reasons…however, the Fed’s can fund the defense, can’t they? I think he could argue it quite consistently.

    Considering the blowback – do you really believe that the USA is safer now that the complete Middle East is totally destabilized? Do you really think it was good idea to overthrow a democratically elected president in Iran in the 50’s and put quite a bloody dictator over there? Do you support such policy?

    Abolishing department of education is not the same as abolishing education. Actually education was better without central planning… Any serious economist would tell you that anyone proposing central planning works is practicing woodoo science. And if those federal employees are redundant, they should not be paid in the first place – they will find other employment.

    Your perfect candidate would:
    – expand spending (you know, the war with Iran)
    – raise taxes
    – create more federal agencies that make things worse
    – deploy army all over the world and provide incentives for everybody to get weapons,
    – finance overthrowing many (including democratically elected) regimes that just don’t work in the interest of the USA
    – confiscate gold, so that people cannot escape inflation
    – regard constitution as a goddamn piece of paper
    – lead USA to bankruptcy by expanding Medicaid and Social security
    – believe and claim that he knows how to run medical care, education, homeland security….

  • Craig

    Phillip,

    When you speak honestly about the issues and your reasons for or against particular issues in some of your responses, you seem intelligent and thoughful.

    However, it seems as if your original post was intended not to initiate discussion, but to incite a negative response. Therefore, you should not be surprised when you get angry posters.

    It would have made more sense to discuss those issues with which you take exception with Paul, rather than to stereotype his supporters and compare him to past candidates with which he shares few political similarities.

  • Craig

    Another point I would like to make that is not directed at you, Phillip, but at the American Conservative article you link to. Difference of opinion never, ever justifythis sort of sickening attack on a person’s character. It’s not only Ron Paul supporters that should be offended by this.

    I wish you had spent more time discussing this blatent and unsubstantiated ad hominem.

  • leanne

    You know, the funny thing is, if the mainstream media had just done their job in the first place, Ron Paul supporters wouldn’t have felt the need to get the word out. The problem was, the media either lied about Ron Paul, ignored Ron Paul, or censored his placing in straw polls. Think how you would feel if it was your candidate. What would you do?

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Vegan (#105), AH! Now I see where you’re coming from. I had been judging America on a basis other than “world opinion,” so I couldn’t see why you were thinking we’d hit bottom. I still suggest things could get worse, but it’s a pointless disagreement, I suppose.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Tina (#106), are you suggesting that the election of Ron Paul would result in widespread unemployment? I’m not sure how I’d lose my job otherwise.

    I hope your persecution complex doesn’t give way to depression next November, but I’m glad you’re excited about your fellow Paul supporters. I hope they don’t let you down. You’ll need quite a few more people to show up and vote than are currently showing up to hold signs, though. Tens of millions, in fact.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Dean (#109), you’ve not seen a single article anywhere advocating for a political candidate other than Paul? Or have you self-limited by definition with the “anti-Paul person” tag.

    Most well-written articles try to stick pretty closely to a limited topic. So an “anti-Paul person” advocating for another candidate wouldn’t spend time revealing himself or himself as an “anti-Paul person,” and someone writing as an “anti-Paul person” (or anti-Paul supporter person) wouldn’t spend time advocating for another candidate.

    In fact, I think that if a writer were to do so, many Paul supporters would complain that anti-Paul rhetoric cluttered up the article.

    In any case, I’ve seen plenty of advocacy articles for other candidates, as well as many articles dissecting other candidates in detail. I think that you’ve not seen them says much about either the sites you read, or the very problem I’m highlighting — that people are spending an outsized amount of time publicizing Paul on the internet.

  • http://www.paltalk.com Dan Warner

    Whenever I read one of these ‘hit pieces’ I just have to laugh. You have the author and maybe a few others who are happy to call names and get their facts wrong. Then you have a bazillion people rush in supporting Ron Paul.

    If this is a reflection of election day I see Ron Paul winning in a landslide! Your hit pieces only show OUR strength, don’t you get that? Keep up the good work! HAHAHA Ron Paul 2008!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Mike (#110) you dear sweet person I’ve never met, I’ve addressed this issue many times in the comments now, but since you asked so sweetly, I’ll go through it again.

    If Paul doesn’t believe he can eliminate government departments, then why run for President? His intention is to eliminate most departments, and while he recognizes that he lacks the ability to do so by fiat, he still speaks — and his supporters even more so — as if it were fait accompli.

    All candidates run because they believe that they can usher their policies through Congress and make them happen. Candidates other than Paul and Kucinich tend to propose policies more or less in line with the ideals of a large section of Congress, so their stuff does tend, by and large, to go through. What Paul is proposing is contrary to what most of Congress wants, and as a result he has no chance at all of getting those departments shut down. Not “less chance,” no chance at all.

    Given that the federal government is the largest employer in the U.S. (2% of all workers!), it’s a safe bet Paul won’t be getting many of their votes, unless those people vote against their own interests, perhaps realizing that though he *wants* to put them out of work, he lacks the power to do so.

  • Jason McCaffrey

    Phillip Winn,

    (#89) “Outside of the militia movement and college campuses, there’s not as wide support for Paul’s policies as one might hope.”

    You must not have heard the news that Dr. Paul has raised more money from the US men and women of the military than any other candidate?

    You keep wanting to paint Ron Paul supporters as crazy and/or naive–and I do think citing the militia movement counts as trying to incite the notion of “crazy” and citing college campuses as trying to incite the notion of “naive.”

    There have also been numerous comparisons in your writing to the long shot hopefuls like Buchanon and Dean, implying that the first time voters are naive to not be paying attention to this important history lesson: long shots don’t win. Are you implying that change from the status quo isn’t possible? Are you implying that your brand of experienced cynicism should be preferred to the wide-eyed hopefulness of young voters? If that’s the case, we might as well kill ourselves now.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    matt (#113), the state and private sectors would grow by 2% overnight? The churn would be fierce!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Nathan (#117), neither do I!

    I’m not sure why you label me as an attacker. Am I not allowed to ask questions? Must I have read everything Paul has ever written in the last 30 years before writing about him or his supporters? I think you’ll find that I did not criticize Paul for his yes-votes at all, but merely noted that I was curious about his reasons for voting for increased federal spending.

    By the way, I hope your paraphrase of “the money was going to be spent anyway” is a poor one. Otherwise, I’m struggling to see how that logic doesn’t support any of a number of other votes Paul could have made and didn’t. Or, for that matter, voting for candidates with a greater likelihood of winning. “She’s going to be elected anyway…” doesn’t sit well with most Paul supporters, but maybe you’re different.

  • Willem de Wit

    Phillip wrote:

    “If Paul doesn’t believe he can eliminate government departments, then why run for President? His intention is to eliminate most departments, and while he recognizes that he lacks the ability to do so by fiat, he still speaks — and his supporters even more so — as if it were fait accompli.”

    If voters don’t believe their vote makes a difference, why vote?

    Ron Paul apparently believes that President Paul will be better able to generate the kind of cultural change that is needed to get the US back on (his interpretation of) the right track than Congressman Paul.

    I believe that my vote for Paul will be able to accomplish a bigger change in US politics than that same vote would if cast for any other candidate, even if Paul doesn’t win the GOP ticket or the general election.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Dean (#118), nice! Since you’ve got it all figured out, have you figured out how to overcome the problem? Or are your skills limited to mass remote diagnosis?

    There is a tendency among most of us to attempt to label those who disagree with us. Anybody who disagrees with us, after all, is essentially telling us that we believe something wrong, right? Otherwise we’d agree with him or her. So we’re upset when people disagree with us.

    Maybe it’s because they don’t know better. They’re ignorant! Let’s give them more information! That usually goes over about as well as you’d expect.

    Maybe it’s because they’re dumb, or lazy. Let’s call them names and see if that helps!

    The problem is that usually people aren’t ignorant, dumb, or lazy. Often people just have different priorities, and come to different conclusions as a result. A consistent political philosophy is a luxury in many ways, something afforded only a few throughout a history filled with people trying to survive. It isn’t laziness or stupidity that causes people to focus on survival or any of a number of other priorities.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Anna, most of these folks aren’t crazy, they just aren’t looking at the big picture. They’ve got a while, maybe a year if Paul decides to run as an independent, but that year will disappear quickly, and I don’t suspect many will take a step back.

    They prioritize a certain brand of idealism that I just can’t get into any more, that’s all.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Anthony (#120), such pessimism! Many things are worse than they’ve been in the past, while others are better.

    The federal government potentially has all the power there is (at least within our borders). The fact that we don’t live in a military dictatorship is a testament to the restraint of many people over the last 200 years and the wisdom of the founders in setting the limits they did.

    Recognizing the power of the federal government isn’t paranoia. Thinking that they’re going to suddenly exercise it in a new way that they’ve avoided for the last 200 years might be. :-)

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Joe (#121), any specific nonsense catch your eye? Thanks!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    jmklein (#122), I said such nice things about you earlier, and now I don’t even get what you’re trying to say. I sense mockery, but you don’t seem to mocking anything I’ve said, so…

    Or did you read whatever page Brian has been reading, a page on which I did advocate staying in Iraq indefinitely and continuing to inflate the money supply?

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Christopher (#123), a day off would have been nice. Fewer gaps in my comments that way. :-)

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    CowboyTech (#124), not a fan of the Council on Foreign Relations? How do you feel about the Pentaveret? That Colenol Sanders is a tricky one.

  • http://www.myspace.com/jeff387 Jeff

    I read your article to see if there are any good reasons NOT to vote for Dr Paul that I haven’t heard yet. Nothing new here. Same old tired arguments for the status quo. I noted you threw in some ad hominem attacks on Paul and his supporters as well. Your grade for today’s article… D- (spared you the F because at least you didn’t throw in an unflattering photo of the good doctor)

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Jason (#129), I freely admit that people polling even lower than Ron Paul include Tancredo, Keyes, Hunter, and the homeless guy on 3rd Street. He assures me he has the support of everybody under the overpass, though.

    $70 million in funding for Section 8 housing vouchers is constitutionally authorized? Can you cite that one for me?

    When you write “Mr. Winn assumes…” aren’t you doing exactly what you decry me for doing? Taking my statements at face value, with no allowance for context or nuance? It’s an opinion article in which the writer engages in mild hyperbole to make a point. I’ve explained the same point a few times in the comments, too.

    Thanks for taking the time to comment, and also to send an email to my partner! Sorry I don’t work in the so-called “MSM,” where I wouldn’t allowed to have this lovely chat with you. I’ll try to get a correction about the 300 million American polling lower than Ron Paul into next week’s issue, m’kay?

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Joshua (#131), you’re comment has convinced me that I, too, want to be part of the “cream of society, the most intelligent of the bunch, leading the way in ideas and ideals.” Surely your monument to good comment-writing will stand the test of time, avoiding the dustbin of oblivion that my foolish current-events opinion piece never had a chance of escaping.

    Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go read the U.S. Constitution again. I was just re-reading it earlier this week as part of research I’m doing on copyright, and I missed a section on housing vouchers…

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Michael (#135), one of my daughters wants a puppy. Maybe.

    I suppose I’m a beehive-poker, if I must pick one. I do believe I see the big picture, so by default…

    Into what category do you fall, since you’re apparently big on categorizing people?

  • http://www.myspace.com/jeff387 Jeff

    One thing I forgot to mention in my first critique is your smug, obnoxious tone. I’m guessing YOU are the guy everyone wants to avoid at parties. You must always think you’re the smartest guy in the room!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Edward (#140), I’m glad you agree that Reagan’s presidency was a good one overall. It’s shame you follow up such excellent judgment with bizarre attempts to redefine words to make me “wrong,” when Goldwater is exactly an example Paul should heed.

    Goldwater lost. That means he got fewer votes and did not win the White House. He was not the President, despite seeking the presidency in an election. The word you were looking for is definitely “lost.”

    Fortunately, as I pointed out, most actions have consequences, often unforseen and debatable. In this case, it’s quite possible that Goldwater’s defeat contributed mightily to Reagan’s election.

    In a similar way, Paul’s defeat might contribute to a future conservative Republican. Or, it might demonstrate to party leadership that the age of conservative Republicans has past. We won’t know unless it happens, right?

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Willem (#141), thanks. It is primarily in the area of foreign policy that I think Paul’s views are simplistic. Libertarians tend to be overly simplistic when it comes to foreign policy, and in my opinion, Harry Browne is an example of that.

    We find ourselves mostly in agreement, especially on the idea that most of Paul’s supporters don’t have a good idea what he might or might not be able to accomplish!

    Thanks again for your kind words.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Freewheeler (#144), now that’s being unnecessarily harsh… to the students of Ridgemont High!

  • bliffle

    “#125 — November 15, 2007 @ 14:26PM — Phillip Winn [URL]

    bliffle (#64), that’s certainly one possible assessment. I suspect he would say that he’s been in politics for 30 years and has finished the whole “figuring out what I believe” phase of his life,”

    Really? Is there an age where one stops thinking, stops judging, stops discussing, negotiating…?

    I don’t think so.

    “… but he does sometimes seem like someone with a rather one-track mind. A nice quality to have in the opposition, but not really what I’d hope for in the leader of much of the free world.”

    Indeed, you’re correct. We have the evidence of such folly in the current occupant of the whitehouse.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    andy (#147), since he can’t set the federal budget himself, many of the reasons people are attracted to him are idealism without practical application.

    The budget would have to be cut extremely deeply, so deeply it would affect all of us in ways that aren’t necessarily obvious right now. I do think it’s amusing that one area in which many Paul supporters are eager to save money is one of the very, very few areas in which the government is actually authorized to spend money: providing for our common defense. Whether having troops in South Korea contributes to our common defense is a debatable point, obviously.

    The fence between us and Mexico is easily defensible from his position, even though I don’t like it much. The housing vouchers are more difficult to understand.

    Do I believe the USA is safer? I don’t know, and neither do you, and neither does Paul. Right now, faced with the specter of Islamism, it is easy to forget the threats that were averted before this point. It’s complex.

    I am a home educator, and never claimed that Paul’s proposal is even a bad thing. My point is that people don’t seem to have thought through the effects of Paul’s proposal, or they assume, as I do, that’s it’s a pointless statement with no possibility of happening.

    My perfect candidate would do exactly zero of the things you suggest, but go ahead and set fire to that straw man of your creation. Enjoy!

  • CowboyTech

    You sure got a busy day:)! Thank you for the platform, and the discussion, I would hope it would be less flippent(Colonel Sanders)if you weren’t so busy! No, I am not a fan of the CFR, and the fact that many in public office are more persuaded by them, then us who voted them in! So by my vote, I make My choice! As you can with yours!
    And your question about Pentaveret, is an open to more expanded discussion, along the same lines. The reason I only mentioned CFR, was space and time consideration, that and the fact of location of office for direct influence.
    CowboyTech

  • andy

    Phillip, read this Paul’s speech (a bit of history).

    And this one regarding IRAQ in 2001 and many others.

    and now read this account of current affairs.

    Do you still believe the actions benefits are worth the costs? Are you ready to say: I support politics that supports this genocide? Are you aware that the USA is preparing to build missile silos in the middle of europe? The Russians are not happy about it, do you think it would lead to greater stability or instability?

    Allow the President to invade a neighboring nation, whenever he shall deem it necessary to repel an invasion, and you allow him to do so, whenever he may choose to say he deems it necessary for such a purpose — and you allow him to make war at pleasure. If today, he should choose to say he thinks it necessary to invade Canada, to prevent the British from invading us, how could you stop him? You may say to him, ‘I see no probability of the British invading us’ but he will say to you, ‘Be silent; I see it, if you don’t.'” -Abraham Lincoln

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Craig (#148-149), thanks. I’m not surprised at all.

    However, he shares far more similarities with previous candidates that you seem to think. Check back in exactly one year and let’s compare notes!

    On a very serious note, I went back and forth on whether to even include that link. I removed others, debated that one, deleted sentences highlighting some of the more factual claims of the article, and finally decided to leave the link with a disclaimer. That may still have been too much, and I’m sorry for that.

    Honestly, I do suspect Paul of a certain kind of racism common to people his age. It’s usually not intentional, but ignorant in the true meaning of the word, and it’s the sort of thing that causes someone to label rioters in L.A. as “barbarians” without thinking about how that sounds.

    That was a number of years ago, and his attitudes toward Muslims, for example, leads me to think he’s updated his views. I don’t think the linked article allows for the passage of time.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Leanne (#150), act annoyingly on the internet?

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Jason (#155), time will tell on the naivete. Care to check back in a year?

    I don’t advocate suicide. Hopeless despair can have many cures, but suicide seems a poor one.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Willem (#158), good answer, sir. Vote away!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Jeff (#166), your comment gets a C. You didn’t include a link to a picture I could use, which should mark you down to a D, but I’m getting close to catching up, so I’m feeling charitable.

    Be glad I’m not grading on a curve!

  • andy

    Phillip, thanks for answer. Yes, the budget would have to be cut extremely deeply – the government expenditures are very extreme. I would say it is very extreme position to try to defend it, Paul seems to be the one with very sensible approach…

    I think people want change. All candidates want to go north. Paul wants south. Where do people want? South. Maybe not so much as Paul does, but definitely it does not help voting North.

    Regarding economics – the common argument from hard-core libertarians against minarchists (small government, Paul’s position) is that even the security tends to be over-produced. This seems to be the case. There is absolutely no need for troops in Korea, Japan, Germany, Italy, building new places in Poland, Czech Republic…

    Yes, many people may not understand Paul’s economic position. However, this time I would suggest that if he magically managed to accomplish everything he said, it would be the greatest thing that could happen to the USA. Really. It won’t happen, it can’t happen. But it wouldn’t hurt.

  • James Foster

    If Ron Paul’s positions are so simplistic, why is it that you can’t comprehend them?

    “Not worried about a little number-fuzziness when it comes to a few hundred billion dollars here or there?”

    Do you live in a cave? We expend MASSIVE amounts of money on maintaining a global military empire. Go add up the numbers. I have, and 100s of billions of tax dollars saved is not only possible, it’s imperative – else the dollar will be routed, and the American standard of living will take a nosedive (oops, already diving).

    “Not worried about where all those ex-federal employees are going to work?”

    The fact that you see the Federal Government as a jobs program speaks volumes about you. No concern that tax payers pay for the giant federal bureaucracy, eh?

    By the way, public education (and lots more) is the responsibility of state and local government – NOT the Federal Government.

    Before you embarrass yourself by writing more of this drivel, perhaps a few months of serious reading is in order. Some suggestions: the U.S. Constitution, The Federalist Papers, The Case for
    Gold, A Foreign Policy of Freedom: Peace, Commerce, and Honest Friendship – that’ll get you on your way to having a clue.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Jeff (#170), you got me! Hey, somebody’s got to be smartest, right?

    Thanks for the superior comment. :-)

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    CowboyTech (#176), your comment was rushed, and got a somewhat rushed response, you’re right. My days of looking over my shoulder for the CFR bogeyman are past, but I can appreciate that those outside of circles of power, like you and me, are often suspicious of those inside those circles. On the whole, I consider such suspicion to be a good thing for the country. Maybe not so good for the suspicious folks, though.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    andy (#177), when I say something is complex and debatable, that’s not an indicator I intend to debate it here and now!

    That Lincoln quote is interesting, especially in light of the War of 1812, discussed briefly above.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    andy (#183), polls suggest that 93% of likely Republican primary voters want to go north, and probably a similarly high percentage of Democratic voters. Oops!

    Wouldn’t hurt whom? Don’t answer that! It’s a rhetorical question, and should be read with a arch tone and raised eyebrow. ;-)

  • andy

    “Not worried about where all those ex-federal employees are going to work?”

    It is very nice of you to respond to comments, so I will add a small thing to the reading list. It is Frederic Bastiat’s “What is seen and what is not”. It is a short pamphlet written by a frech journalist in 1850 – the text is available on bastiat.org online. I think the second chapter is called ‘Disbanding the Troops’ and it actually responds to your concern (in 1850!).

    This pamphlet made me understand the position of people like Paul. The modern version of this is Henry Hazlitt’s Economy in One Lesson, I believe that one is somewhere online as well :)

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    James (#184), a hundred billion here, a hundred billion there, and pretty soon you’re talking about real money!

    You might need to relax a little. Are you drinker? Pour yourself a stiff one tonight to take the edge off.

    Re-read your comment in a month or so and see if you’re embarrassed. I wish you hadn’t put your last name.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    andy (#190), I am familiar with the Libertarian positions on the issue, as I’ve described above.

    Thanks!

    With this comment, I should be caught up (!), so I’m going to break for a while, possibly for the night.

    Thanks, all!

  • andy

    Philipp (#189): wouldn’t hurt the people who do meaningful work. Would hurt state employees that do something nobody wants – but most of them would be better off anyway in slightly longer run.

    The Bastiat’s text demonstrates why – they would start producing instead of wasting. Can you imagine that the federal budget would be spent without wasting on things that people want?

  • andy

    Phillip, I am reading through the comments… regarding the charity – of course the charity could take care of the people. They always did. Read this.

    As for Bastiat – I believe most economists would agree that Bastiat is mainstream. If you were familiar with mainstream economy, I would guess you wouldn’t ask such question…

    Regarding the Social Security: The fact is somebody must pay it. There is no silver bullet. If you drastically cut the budget, you might get away without raising taxes. If you don’t, prepare for a default on the SS. RP’s position seems to be reasonable.

  • Steve

    This guy doesn’t know anything about Ron Paul, he is trying to smear him so that people won’t vote for him. It is that simple. This guy doesn’t understand the issues and he is trying to undermine all Americans. Don’t believe the hype! Go RON, are not dead last and we will take New Hampshire!!!

  • Willem de Wit

    Phillip wrote:

    “Libertarians tend to be overly simplistic when it comes to foreign policy”

    That’s what I thought, too, after 9/11, and during the lead-up to and the first year of the war in Iraq.

    However, over the last few years I’ve come to the realization that, as is the case so often, the cure may have very well been worse than the disease. We were attacked by less than two dozen individuals wielding box cutters. Now, we’re involved in multiple wars with no end in sight, are tens of trillions of dollars in debt (counting future obligations), and the US dollar is worth less than the Canadian dollar. China has talked about their “nuclear option” and has openly discussed the possibility of reducing their purchase of our treasury notes. There’s talk about invading Iran (“We will not allow Iran to develop nuclear weapons.”) on both sides of the aisle.

    Meanwhile, with all the talk about the terrible things our enemies could do to us, we have done next to nothing to secure our borders and ports. This fact alone makes me doubt that our administration truly fears the scenario of enemies smuggling a nuclear device across the border to detonate it inside a major US city.

    Iraq, in hindsight, was a terrible mistake, as Saddam posed no threat to us whatsoever. The world views us in a much more negative light now (not that that should ever be a reason NOT to do the right thing), which has greatly diminished our diplomatic leverage. No wonder Iran doesn’t seem intimidated by our threats. They know/believe our military to be bogged down in Iraq for a while. They know that if we were to attack Iran, they have a blueprint of how to fight us. (Take off uniforms, store weaponry, fight guerilla battles.)

    Few of the actions taken after 9/11 have actually made us safer. Many of them have made us less safe. The “simplistic” libertarian response to 9/11 is something we can only theorize about, as we cannot turn back the clock and ask for a do-over. However, I believe there is still time to undo some of the damage done by the “complicated” neo-conservative response, and to ensure that it is not allowed to do further damage.

  • http://ronpaul2008.com ronpaulisnocfrmember

    You say that Ron Paul supporters are at a high-school level politically. That is actually pretty accurate for those of us that learned about the constitution in High School. The constitution is pretty simple, and if you graduate from HS not understanding it then your educators didn’t do their job. The level that we have yet to reach which you so proudly have attained is the level of being BRAINWASHED BY THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA – which I’m sure is where you get most of your information. Pick up the constitution and read it. I suggest you learn which candidates (Clinton, Obama, etc…) are members of the cfr then go to cfr.org and read the document titled “Building a North American Community”. Then reply to this post and tell me how you feel.

  • Willem de Wit

    Steve wrote:

    “This guy doesn’t know anything about Ron Paul, he is trying to smear him so that people won’t vote for him.”

    It’s his opinion. Although I’m guilty of surfing the web for news about Ron Paul, which probably makes me one of the fanatical Paulites, I do hope that we’ll get past the point where anything critical of Ron Paul is considered slander/smear.

    Although I am in full support of Paul’s presidential campaign, I can certainly understand that there are many voters who have strong negative feelings about Paul. After all, Paul doesn’t hide his views, and those views, though perhaps at one time in history the norm, are now deemed extreme by the majority of (both informed and uninformed) voters.

    If we throw a fit every time a voter posts a negative opinion of Paul, Paul probably won’t get a single vote, as all his supporters will have died from heart attacks come the primary and/or general election.

    Learn to accept that there will be people who simply won’t ever support Paul. For every one of those, there are 10 voters who haven’t fully made up their mind. And the overly negative reactions to the one opponent may scare off the other 10 (still) open-minded voters.

  • Peter

    This article doesn’t make a sense. It enumerates Paul’s positions, judging they are clearly wrong (unrealistic), but actually doesn’t provide any valid counter arguments why are those positions wrong.

  • Tannim

    Pored over these posts and have arrived at a conclusion:

    Don’t paint all of Dr. Pauls’ supporters with the same brush!

    For every namecaller or Brian Middleton there are dozens of us who aren’t. Apologies on behalf of those dozens for the bah-haviors of those few.

    However, I would object to those who say that Dr. Paul has no foreign policy vision. I would say that his foreign policy is exactly what George Washington’s was: non-interventionism (NOT isolationism!), which means peaceful trade, diplomacy and no foreign entanglements. In today’s terms that also means real free and fair trade (not the NAFTA BS we have now) and energy independence (ala Brazil model). Nothing lacking vision or a plan there. I would claim that those who think his plan to be lacking in vision or cohesion have not done their research and are still being spoon-fed by the Old Media. They alos probably believe the outdated last-century rigged polls as well.

    The next few months will be interesting to say the least, and I for one am looking forward to Dr. Paul coming up hard on the outside and winning down the stretch.

  • just the facts

    gonzo marx (#53) wrote:

    “and form NASA alone we have many things , transistors, which lead to the IC chip…

    thanks for the Thought, but the facts differ.”

    Yes, the facts DO differ. The transistor was invented by Bell Labs in 1947, and was in commercial use by the early ’50s, before NASA existed.

    Jack Kilby, working for Texas Instruments, is credited with developing the first IC chip in 1958, around the same time NASA was formed.

  • Mike

    I’m well aware of the libertarian theory of coercion. You might want to chat with your buddy Ron Paul about a few of the votes he’s made that seem to indicate he’s forgotten some of this, but you and I, we can simply agree to disagree, and not as much as you might think.
    _________________________________________________

    If you’re aware of the libertarian “theory of coercion”, then I wonder, do you agree with this theory, or do you believe innocent people should be subjected to coercion? Which candidate running for president now do you believe adheres to this principle of non-coercion more strongly than Ron Paul?

    ___________________________________________________
    Mike (#110) you dear sweet person I’ve never met, I’ve addressed this issue many times in the comments now, but since you asked so sweetly, I’ll go through it again.

    If Paul doesn’t believe he can eliminate government departments, then why run for President?
    ________________________________________________

    IRRELEVANT! You claimed that Ron Paul thinks he can eliminate all these departments single-handedly. He doesn’t as evidenced by him repeatedly saying that he needs Congress’ cooperation to get rid of these departments.

    The biggest reason Ron Paul is running for president is to change the course of the nation and particularly its foreign policy. Having a minimalist president is a big first step to reducing government coercion (taxes), as a president has the ear of the nation and can therefore spread his principles, and the president has the power to veto new legislation, both important powers.

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “Ron Paul is simple-minded”

    That’s not even close to correct…

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “an expensive fence separating the U.S. from Mexico?”

    Sounds like national security to me…and one of the few constitutional duties of the federal government is national security.

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “Health and Human Services? Gone! Education? Gone! Energy? Homeland Security? Gone!”

    Sounds kinda like Reagan’s platform back in 1980 (Homeland Security excepted, of course)…

  • chowfun

    Mr Winn: Right NOW Congress is spending over $23,000 per HOUSEHOLD per YEAR. PLEASE take some time to mull over that number. PLEASE understand that BOTH Republicans and Democrats are doing this to us. But NOT Ron Paul. Look at his record!!

    You would think that when America completely ran (past tense) out of money, the alarms bells would haved sounded from sea to shining sea, and they would have tightened their belts instead of spending at an INCREASED rate….but NOOOOOO.

    The truth is that Obama=Clinton=Giuliani=Romney=Thompson, NONE of the “front runners” are about freedom, ALL of them are about BOTH socialism and corporate welfare, and NAU and globalism and BIG GOVERNMENT and BIG SPENDING…and outright THEFT!! America is already sinking into a black hole. TODAY, not next year.

    How tiring it is to hear Ron Paul fans being labelled as “fringe” or “conspiracy theorists”. But they’re right about this…we’re the “internet” gang. And YOU can interpret it this way: we’re the ONLY ones who seem to have a CLUE!!!!!!!

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “There’s always a Goldwater, a LaRouche, a Perot, a Nader or Buchanan, a Paul.”

    I consider five of the six individuals listed above to be brilliant patriots with both great foresight and bravery, who used idealism to fight a losing battle against a corrupt system. YMMV.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    Nice job, Phillip. You’re averaging a comment every 5 minutes. Impressive. Imagine if you’d found a way to tie Hugo Chavez in too.

    Dave

  • Clavos

    LOL!!!

  • http://a-gu.blogspot.com Jason

    I don’t like everything about Paul. I live in Taiwan, which he thinks is a part of China (I’m rabidly oppossed to this position). I’m pro-choice and I don’t want to dismantle the Federal Reserve.

    But for me, the most important issues in this campaign are:

    1) rolling back the Executive authority Bush has claimed, and ending the indefinite detention of citizens / domestic spying / secret CIA prisons / military tribunals / shipping people to be tortured in allied countries, not to mention restoring habeas corpus.

    2) having a rational foreign policy that does not involve spending a trillion dollars a year to maintain an empire that only hurts our national interests.

    And for me, a leftist, Paul is the only guy who cares about or talks about those two issues, so I feel I must support him.

    And when polls indicate 70% of Republican primary voters haven’t heard enough about Paul to decide if they like him or not, is the problem really his platform or the lack of exposure?

  • Andrew

    I guess I’ll add my two cents.

    “Agree or disagree with each of those positions, each involves a vote for increasing federal spending, something I keep hearing he’s never done. Oops!”

    So, where is it you hear Ron Paul has never voted to increase spending? Because I’ve Followed Ron Paul for, oh, 6 years or so now and I don’t recall ever seeing that.

    as Ron Paul keeps saying, and saying, and saying, he just follows what what he sees as Constitionally allowed, so these yae votes he has apparently seen justification for.

    The mucked up way our government works (i.e., no paygo, zero-based budgeting, etc.), if you want to vote for the government to do any one particular thing, that can be spun (however limply) into an attempted wedge that Ron Paul broke some sort of vow he never made to never vote for increased spending.

    If you take how many things Paul has voted down versus those he’s voted for, I’d bet it nets a reduction in federal spending.

    It’s not that you can’t say anything while we are watching. It’s just now you have to be accurate.

    A president (even a Saddam Hussein) can’t control or fix a screwed up system by himself, but it’s a start. If any really do, not all Ron Paul supporters think he’s a magic bullet. And you make it sound like every other Presidential candidate’s supporters don’t get a little carried away with how great their “man” is. Or, woman in the case of Giuliani.

    Your commentary seems to be finding the one candle in the dark and doing your best to snuff it out.

  • Andrew

    When you say Ron Paul supporters may do badly in a debate on “energy policy, science & technology policy, & space policy…” go ahead and give it a go.

    On energy, Are you talking about a belligerent foreign policy (of which Bush is just the worst, with the most cojones, but all the others, except Kucinich and Gravel aspire to do similarly) to stabilize the Middle East to make it safe for oil transactions that have taken oil prices from roughly $27 a barrel to $100 and trending upward?

    On science and technology, consider Ron Paul’s position to allow but not federally fund stem cell research, thus allowing progress while not forcing people to fund research they find morally reprehensible and (so far) unsuccessful, although mildly promising. We have a long way to go on stem cell research and understanding the biology to be able to manipulate them. And now we are so lucky that embrionic stem cell research was not locked in by bureaucratic funding because we are finding that other sources of cells have stemness. The beauty of laissez faire is the best ideas win based on results, not politics. We banked our baby’s cord blood. Because it may never pan out, I would never think to have someone else pay for it. We can’t afford to have the government get into the risky businesses like research and investing. They will always find a reason to spend-the moral hazard problem of politicians and special interests not having to risk their own money. Research in general does seem to be seen as a public good, with all the attendant problems. I’d just prefer it was left to the private sector and voluntary donations. I think we’d get almost as good bottom-line results for much less cost. The difference, left in people’s wallets would go to fund their own life improvements.

    On space, well. I don’t even know what to say on that boondoggle. It’s like workfare for geniuses. What a misdirection of efforts. We have a lot of problems to work on here on the good old earth without treking around other stars looking for wars. A lot of the research in space (which doesn’t end up crashing in a ball of fire) is designed to improve our performance in space. E.g., how can we make it so astronauts can get all the way to Mars and back without their bones falling apart. Sure, that may have some application to osteoporosis, but we could just as easily fund osteoporosis research directly. Not so useful to my mind, and awful expensive, even if we do occasionally get an ancillary Tang out of it. That money in the private sector would get more Tang for the buck.

  • Andrew

    Wow, I can’t get through two paragraphs without finding something else.

    “…but at the same time somehow still manage to win the Cold War so we’re not all speaking Russian.”

    Are you serious? The cold war was won not by us tempting the Reds to start a hot war, but by the very superiority of our economic system. Theirs was walking dead for decades before it finally gave up the ghost. Yes, we did spend them into oblivion with national defense, but this only accelerated the issue. We would have just fine having them collapse a few decades later, perhaps. Or just by quietly adopting capitalism along the way like China may be doing, without firing a shot.

    As for Reagan…it’s not our fault you were fooled by Reagan’s inability to control his people. And Ronald Reagan was no Ron Paul.

  • Andrew

    Okay, I’m done being “that guy.”

    So, what other issues do you want to discuss. What is on the other side of that equation?

    Like Jim Rome says, “have a take, don’t suck.”

  • http://europe4ronpaul.blogspot.com Fabio

    Guys, just my two cents from Germany:

    In 1963, your former president JFK came to my capital, Berlin.
    He said:

    “All free men, wherever they may live, are citizens of Berlin, and, therefore, as a free man, I take pride in the words “Ich bin ein Berliner.”

    I was becoming what your ridiculous isolationist Neocon-Media calls “anti-american” after the bullshit your leaders have done in the past 6 years.

    Elect Dr. Paul and I`ll take pride in the words “Ich bin ein Amerikaner”.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    Jason in #211 illustrates the fundamental problem with the Paul campaign. Too many of his supporters are like Jason – fairweather friends who are crossing party lines to support Paul with no real interest in the basic values Paul or the GOP believe in. They are supporting him solely on opposition to the war and won’t stick with the GOP if someone other than Paul – who may have many of the same policies aside from the war – gets the nomination. Their involvement delegitimizes Paul in the eyes of many Republicans who see the war as just one issue among many and might want to support Paul on other issues, but see him as tainted by pandering to the left on the issue of the war.

    What Jason doesn’t get is that Paul doesn’t just oppose the Iraq war, he opposes an interventionist foreign policy, which includes opposing funding the UN, opposing funneling aid money into africa and certainly opposing sending US aid to our precious friends in Darfur.

    Dave

  • Jason McCaffrey

    Phillip (#182),

    Even if Ron Paul doesn’t win the nomination or the election, I won’t think my “naivete” will have been in vain. This will be my third time voting in a presidential election, and should Ron Paul lose, it will be my third time voting for a loser. The next time around I’ll still do what Ron Paul does–vote with principled integrity. If there isn’t a candidate that fits that principled integrity, I will probably stay home. You can call that naive if you want to.

    And if I did check back in a year and you were right and I was wrong, how does that answer the question regarding what is to be preferred: your brand of experienced cynicism or the wide-eyed hopefulness of young voters? If we have a system where one is justifiably viewed as naive, crazy or dumb to hope for any of the candidates that aren’t the media’s golden children, then suicide isn’t necessarily the best option, but it’s one of them. Another option would be defecting to Switzerland or something.

    Also, could you please provide links to the bills that you mentioned in your blog that Ron Paul voted yes on. I tried to look them up on vote-smart.org, but I can’t find them. I’m not questioning your accuracy, I just want to know more than one sentence about each bill.

    Thank you for trying to respond to all of these comments. It’s nice to see that your blog is an arena for discourse.

  • andy

    Dave…there cannot be somebody like Paul who has other policies like him except war. You cannot have sound fiscal policy while maintaining empire.

    Imagine 2 people with different political opinion meet and they have to choose a policy. One wants public education and no army, the other wants private education and foreign aid. Possible outcomes:
    – (1) private education, privatly financed foreign aid
    – (2) public education, state financed foreign aid
    – (3) public education, private foreign aid
    – (4) private education, foreign aid

    Current candidates are mostly type (2), with democrats and republins leaning to 3 and 4 respectively. Paul is type (1). Democrats will never vote for type (4), republicans for type (3). You are claiming that if Paul was type (4), the democrats will change their party. Yes, thay will. But that is actually the point – they will vote for him, because he will not impose his values on them.

    Somebody put it this way – liberals want to be in your bedroom, conservatives want to be in your wallet. Is there something bad on voting for a guy, who does not want to be in neither while all other candidates seem to be in both?

  • Alan

    ‘..online fever failing to translate into real-life success”

    I can think of 4.2 million reasons why you’re wrong on that issue let alone the rest of this smear job of an article. I’ll just touch on the Russian thing. Firstly the Soviet system was doomed at conception because such a system cannot substain itself. Secondly it was much more than a bit of funding the US gave to the Afghans, it was a radical new version of Islam. Do a search for “schoolbooks, Taliban, CIA”. Thirdly the very reason for doing so? And I vaguely quote: “To give the Russians their own Vietnam (quagmire)”.

    This neoconned version of Islam ultimately led to 9/11, which was used as an excuse for the 20th century’s very own Vietnam-like quagmire. Can we say “blowback”? Well the CIA can, as did the 9/11 Commission Report but hey, keep calling the only politician that talks sense a loon, huh?

    By the way, the more hits you get without a corrosponding increase in clicks actually lowers your Google earnings. Guess you didn’t know that either?

    Alan

  • Healthydose

    There’s an article about a person in Springfield Ill. receiveing threats to take down his R.P. signs… from City Hall no less. This is happening all around the country. Why is he garnering so much love and hate? During the American Revolution there were 3 groups. 1/3 for freedom, 1/3 were Tories–stay with England, and 1/3 just wanted to be left alone. Our Founders were definitly radicals. Cornwallis commanded that “The World Turned Upside Down” be played when the British surrendered at Yorktown. The Founders did indeed turn the world on its’ head. We inspired the French and South American revoulutions. They saw and had first hand experience of a heavy handed Gov. and wanted no part of that. Freedom and liberty were their battle cry. So what did they do? They gave us the freest form of Gov. possible…a Republic and to boot they gave us…their posterity… an Operating Manual with exact simple-to-follow instructions to keep ourselves in that free state. They also gave us admonitions, and spoke prophetically as to what would happen should we disregard their instructions.
    Now look at u. s. today. The Founders were right, not because they had a crystal ball, but because human nature doesn’t change. We have, though careful conditioning, become so accoustomed to Gov. doing so many things for us, that when some one comes alone and wants to take away the “blanky” they throw a temper tantrum and run to “mommy”.
    Ron Paul is hated by some because his election means the end of their thievery and pillaging of the American people. Others because it means the end of their easy ride of living off of others being forced to “contribute” to their existence. Others because they are purposely misinformed by the media about him
    He is loved by many because he courageously stands for the Constitution, even if that means standing alone. He is consistent because he votes by principle NOT because he was paid to vote a certain way.
    Unfortunately, many people erroneously believe that returning our Gov. to the original course set by the Founders is wrong. They established a minimal gov. plan with maximum freedom. They purposely put a straight-jacket on the Fed. Gov. We were to be responsible for ourselves…period. ANY politician saying he wants to do thus and such for you is comitting a Constitutional no, no.
    Ron Paul doesn’t want to run your life, that’s your business. Ron Paul does want to have Gov. obey the Operating Manual.
    We The People of these United States of America are sick of the travesty of what has become of our great Republic.
    Ron Paul has the correct diagnosis. But, are we willing to follow through on the treatment.

  • Markus

    Another piece of bad journalism with wrong stats.

  • Josh

    Sir Phillip,

    I would like to sincerely thank you for supporting the Ron Paul Revolution. Any publicity is good publicity. I have one answer for you, to this question:

    “Not worried about where all those ex-federal employees are going to work?”

    No, I am not. I have been hoping for years that they would be sent out to get a job that contributes to our economy, rather than sucking off of it. Maybe then the value of our fake money would increase.

  • http://www.faithadventure.blogspot.com Stephanie

    Ron Paul’s ideas are radical, but a vote for him represents a vote against the scary status quo and for the troops to come home from Iraq. Ron Paul is extremely intelligent, by the way. He knows how the government works and isn’t delusional about how his ideals would have to be carried out. One of the best things about Ron Paul is that he unites Republicans, Democrats, and Independents. No other candidate does these things.

  • http://gravelkucinichpaulnader.blogspot.com/ gravel kucinich paul nader

    Gravel kucinich paul nader perot carter [conyers?rangel?] united for truth elicit fear smear blacklist.

    The people know too much,
    democracy rising democracy now.
    Rage against the machine.

    Honesty compassion intelligence guts.

    No more extortion blackmail bribery division.
    Divided we fall.

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Thanks to everyone who commented today, and I’m sorry I couldn’t supply a personal response to comments #194-224.

    I’m glad most of you have found someone who motivates you politically, and I hope that many of you continue to feel motivate after your candidate returns to South Texas. I suspect he’ll never again do as well as will in 2008, so I hope he achieves something.

    I’m sorry some of you are engaging in shallow discourse laced with personal invective rather than considering the issues I’ve raised, but hey, I guess I started it.

    I meant what I said above. I’ve been familiar with Paul for more than a decade, but I’m willing to pick up a book and re-acquaint myself with his views and discuss them with a reasonable Paul supporter with a radio-friendly voice and demeanor. If you’re interested in talking weekly for a while in 2008, the offer is open. Just contact me using the the first letter of my first name followed by my last name at this sites URL.

    Thanks!

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    Dave…there cannot be somebody like Paul who has other policies like him except war. You cannot have sound fiscal policy while maintaining empire.

    What empire? The US has no empire.

    Somebody put it this way – liberals want to be in your bedroom, conservatives want to be in your wallet.

    I think you got that exactly backwards, but goo try.

    Is there something bad on voting for a guy, who does not want to be in neither while all other candidates seem to be in both?

    Who was that guy again? Last I checked Ron Paul was in favor of prayer in schools and opposed to gay marriage.

    Dave

  • jugzter

    Quick money making schemes: #1 attack Ron Paul and watch the ad revenue flow in!

  • andy

    The US is an empire. Have you seen the map of bases around the world?

    Dave,he does not want to be in either, you didn’t do the homework. He said the Federal government shall write no law regarding prayer in schools and gay marriage. And that is the point – in my bedroom I will do what I want to – but I will not get into your bedroom. (I got the liberals/conservatives really backwards…oops).

    The amendment 10 says: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.” Which part of ‘are reserved to the states or to the people’ is not clear? Regarding the gay marriage Paul has stated that any contract made by 2 adult citizens should be respected. And that marriage is a religious matter and he would probably like government out of this business.

    Philipp: I didn’t want to be personal. Asking what would happen to federal employees and at the same time being aware of the “fallacy of broken window”/”what is seen and what is not” economic reasoning seems to me mutually exclusive. (actually this has nothing to do with libertarian point of view and everything with economics)

  • Franklin

    This is hillarious! Brilliant even. Most of the satire I see about Ron Paul is so obvious that it’s not that funny. This, on the other hand, is so subtle that it actually seems like is was written by someone who truly dislikes Paul.

    The ad hominem, misleading use of facts and, in a few places, pure fabrication. Brilliant, I tell you. The only mistake (IMO) was linking the author to a food blog. It makes it more funny but takes away from the subtle nature of the satire.

  • http://www.OUTTAKEonline.com Charlotte

    For more info check out our trailer on Gay Marriage. Produced to educate & defuse the controversy it has a way of opening closed minds & creates an interesting spin on the issue: http://www.OUTTAKEonline.com

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Thanks, Franklin! I had forgotten that my current “Writer URL” is my wife’s magazine site until referrers started showing up, but I’m glad it put the bubble in the soda for you.

    Your comment stands as more brilliant satire than my own, though, and I bow to your brilliance. The unlinked and unsubstantiated false claims you make are far more clever than my statements, for which I was foolish enough to provide links and further explanations when questioned.

    Next time I’ll go all the way and just say what I want without worrying about “evidence” or “truth,” and only then will I have achieved the sort of subtle satire you evidently see I’m capable of producing.

    Thanks for your faith in me!

  • http://blogcritics.org/ Phillip Winn

    Andy (#229), I’m aware of the so-called “broken window fallacy,” but that doesn’t mean that I agree with it or that I think it applies in this case.

    It’s all very good to say in the abstract that since I didn’t break X, I’m not responsible for whatever short-term negative effects may result from fixing X. Human suffering isn’t “X” and a broken window isn’t the same as a broken health care system. What seems right on paper sometimes runs into trouble when you face down someone — or thousands of someones — who will die as a result of the abrupt removal of economic support they’d come to depend on. Should they have? No. Should they die for making that mistake?

    This is an example of what I mentioned above: different people value different things. Some people would define “justice” as nobody having their property taken away from them and given to someone else. Others might look at the result — people dying for lack lack of food or cheap medicine in one of the richest countries in the world, and see only “injustice.” Which is wrong? Which is right?

    I think that both are wrong and both are right, in different ways. To take from the rich to give to the poor is unjust. For where you live to dictate whether you live or die as a result of sanitary conditions is unjust. Can you solve either problem without impacting the other? It’s hard to see how.

    Of course, even asking the question reveals that I’m a squishy liberal bleeding heart, a muddle-headed thieving looter, right? Maybe not for you, Andy, but certainly for many of the commenters above. The moral clarity of living in a walled city can be comforting.

  • http://www.shout-it-loud.com Canadian

    Marriage is like a tense, unfunny version of Everybody Loves Raymond, only it doesn’t last 22 minutes. It lasts forever.~
    Pete Quote from the movie Knocked up

  • andy

    Phillip, the question was about the employees of the Federal agencies, not about poor people, not about medical aid. You have suggested, that if those people are laid off because of closing these agencies that there would appear a problem with unemployment. According to the ‘fallacy of broken window’ the people will have more money, they will try to spend it and these people would be fast employed. (FYI: on New Zealand they fired several thousands employees overnight because of closing state post office. There was no surge of unemployment because of this move. Actually the drop of unemployment began in the moment they abandoned labour union privileges.).

    I did not argue on health care with broken window fallacy. However, the problem used to be solved using the ‘friendliness societies'(see the link above) and I just don’t see why current state-provided solution is superior. There are people who suggest that not letting state help means wanting these people help themselves (I have an impression that objectivism would fall in this category though). RP is not objectivist and he would certainly argue that he doesn’t want state interference, because it is inferior to people providing this help themselves. If I want to help you, I can just do it – I do not need to pay a state employee to help you on my behalf.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    The US is an empire. Have you seen the map of bases around the world?

    Bases present at the agreement of the host country hardly make an empire.

    Dave,he does not want to be in either, you didn’t do the homework. He said the Federal government shall write no law regarding prayer in schools and gay marriage. And that is the point – in my bedroom I will do what I want to – but I will not get into your bedroom. (I got the liberals/conservatives really backwards…oops).

    And he’s dead wrong. The federal government has an established and legitimate role in protecting the rights of citizens from the abuses of state government. To paraphrase Jefferson, majority rule doesn’t mean allowing minorities to be oppressed, even when the people of a state vote to be oppressive.

    The constitution should be the ultimate authority, especially the Bill of Rights, and Paul places states rights ahead of individual rights when it’s convenient for him.

    Dave

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “The constitution should be the ultimate authority, especially the Bill of Rights, and Paul places states rights ahead of individual rights when it’s convenient for him.”

    I agree with the first part of your sentence, and disagree with the second part. I believe the Ninth and Tenth Amendments make it pretty clear that most matters should be left up to the states. (And not recognizing homosexual and/or polygamous marriages is hardly “oppressive” …)

  • andy

    “Bases present at the agreement of the host country hardly make an empire.”

    Empire: A political unit having an extensive territory or comprising a number of territories or nations and ruled by a single supreme authority.

    Considering that when any country does something the USA don’t like they tend to intervene, I think the definition would match.

    BTW: I don’t think you could say the bases in Europe are a result of ‘agreement’, and I would guess the same applies to many bases all over the world – I would guess that many were ‘agreed on’ by a CIA-imposed pro-USA government….

    “The federal government has an established and legitimate role in protecting the rights of citizens from the abuses of state government. To paraphrase Jefferson, majority rule doesn’t mean allowing minorities to be oppressed, even when the people of a state vote to be oppressive.”

    That is absolutely right. Can you explain me how does the VOLUNTARY prayer at school oppress the minorities? Can you explain me how the ‘ten commandments’ piece of stone in a court building does oppress minorities?

    “The constitution should be the ultimate authority, especially the Bill of Rights, and Paul places states rights ahead of individual rights when it’s convenient for him.”

    Actually, I think Paul would be first to say that the state must not oppress individual rights. He favours private schools etc. However, given the current legal framework I would suggest, that if you want to ban prayer at school, you should amend constitution. I don’t see that congress has any authority to do this – schools are paid by the states and congress doesn’t have this power enumerated nowhere. Thus, see Bill of Rights, amendment 10. Do you suggest that the Federal Government should ignore the constitution?