Ron Paul

The Friday Political Thread: Magic Subliminal Cross Edition


The Christmas holiday falls on Monday and Tuesday, so this will be a long, languid, weekend. Occasional updates will probably appear on this thread.

Quote of the week…

"You can call me a one-issue candidate if you'd like, as long as you realize my issue is the survival of this country as we know it."- former presidential candidate Tom Tancredo, whose website is now an anthology of horrified news articles about his success pushing hard-line immigration doctrine on the GOP

The week in brief…

– Polls showed the Democratic race frozen after Barack Obama's mini-surge while the Republican race was tugged in a million directions: McCain up in New Hampshire, Romney recovering in Iowa, Paul staying strong in South Carolina, and Rudy losing his national lead.

– Just about every presidential candidate launched a TV ad to capitalize on the Sol Invictus.

– The Dec. 16 Tea Party fundraiser was a success, raising $6 million in a day for Ron Paul. Naturally, coverage of the campaign focused on whether he thought Mike Huckabee was a fascist and why there's a photo of him and the bad guy from American History X. Wonder what Tim Russert will ask Paul this Sunday?

– Mike Huckabee worried that Gitmo was too damn pleasant. ("He didn't say damn.")

– Congress banned the incandescent light blub. Seriously.

Larger issues…

In Dodd We Trust. Most people who run from the Senate, if they weren't already useless, soon become so. Neither Obama nor Clinton has gotten much done this year that wasn't for the camera. (Anyone remember Clinton's proposal to cap the number of troops in Iraq to stop the Surge?) Sam Brownback was never less productive then when he was flying to Iowa to fill one-thirteenth of the chairs at rec centers. The exceptions to this, this year, have been John McCain, who actually left the trail at points to turn his flamethrower on anti-war Senate Democrats, and… Chris Dodd. The only resounding note of his campaign all year has been Dodd's pledge to "restore the Constitution." This week he did that, chucking a wrench into the Senate gears to delay a vote on FISA reform until next year. And the crowd went wild! Jim Henley switched his Democratic endorsement from Battlin' Bill Richardson to the man from Connecticut.

It's not fair that Richardson lacked the ability to do what Dodd did yesterday—hold the Senate hostage for liberty!!!!!1!eleven!1!—but, as we libertarians say all too often, life isn't fair. The Dodd came through. Respect the Dodd. Respect the Dodd—with cash.

Dodd's not going to win the presidency, as Shawn Macomber discovered after some time getting Dodded on the trail. (It hurt. It hurt real bad.) But there's substantial bloggy momentum for a Dodd coup against Harry Reid. It's not hard to believe he'd want Reid's job. Thirteen years ago he ran for it and lost by one vote.

Below the fold…

– Chris Beam boards the Ron Paul Blimp, as does Charles Frohman. It sounds cold.

– Jonah Goldberg reels from Hillary Clinton's Christmas ad, the purest distillation yet of Liberal Fascism.

– Bob Moser watches Hillary and Barack battle it out for black votes.

– John Bresnahan and Martin Kady get ready for the Democrats to bail on anti-Iraq War politics.

– Kevin Poulson wonders if Hillary Clinton is still obsessed with digital T&A. (She is.)

There was only one possible choice for Politics and Prog this week. My only worry is what the second-most obvious yuletide hit is… but the way things're going the Religion of Secularism will ban Christmas next year, so no sweat!

NEXT: Friday Mini Book Review: I Have America Surrounded

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  1. I had something I wanted to post earlier but was waiting for this thread and now I dont remember. Anybody have any idea?

  2. Anybody have any idea?

    Did it involve something thousands and thousands of years ago, and there was much defecation?

  3. The one thing that made me love Tancredo, in spite of all his many faults and foibles, was his answer to a question to a Youtuber at the Cnn debates. He asked if the government was going to get up off its ass already with the Mars mission and commit to sending a man there soon. After Huckabee gave a very optimistic and pandering, “I want to do it for the glory and the technology it would engender … you know, just like Kennedy” with his trademark smooth son-of-a-preacher-man style, Tancredo said what I was dying to say.

    Essentially he said that with all this talk this evening about cutting spending and wasteful programs, how can anyone stand here with a straight face and say that he is going to send a man to Mars. If you want to know what program I’d like to cut, it’s that one right there, the 500 billion dollar one.

    Not a lot of true blue red-blooded American hero types have the guts to say, “fuck the space program”. For that, I salute you, Mr. Tancredo.

  4. I don’t know if Pauls assessment was a fair one or not but Huckabee does have a picture with a flag guitar strap and now he has the commercial with the subliminal cross. Add to that he quotes the beatles devilish conspiracy theory saying Paul is dead three times in a row. What is next? Will he now say Paul lives after dieing on the cross three days later? Hmmm makes me wonder.

  5. Breaking…

    John Hospers, the Libertarian Party’s first Presidential candidate has just endorsed Wayne Root for President. and are carrying the story.

  6. 1. Obviously, those who are intellectually honest realize that Tancredo has been right all along about this issue. Just two examples of the dangers involved: example 1, example 2.

    2. It’s been a long year for those suffering from prog-related symptoms, so enjoy this very strong antidote.

    3. Finally, here’s my very special Christmas gift to everyone at Reason.

  7. And last time around Hospers backed G. W. Bush.
    That pretty much discredits anything he has to say about presidential candidates.

    Sad, at one time he was a brilliant philosopher and a fun guy to share a meal with.

  8. Arrr ! Me thinks President Ron Paul won’t harry
    the heathens of Nippon for hunting the humpback whale.

  9. You missed that biggest story today. Rush Limbaugh went after Huckabee. His boom may be busting soon.

  10. John Hospers, the Libertarian Party’s first Presidential candidate has just endorsed Wayne Root for President.

    Wow! I mean, wow! I don’t know what to say except Big Fucking Surprise.
    W.A. Root is the frontrunner for the LP Nomination.
    Though I will give Hospers credit for backtracking with regard to GW Bush and the War in Iraq.

    BTW, Wayne Root asks only a few very nuanced points WRT the war, chief among them:
    *Admit the war is a disaster.
    *Admit post-war planning was a disaster.
    *Admit it’s a civil war in Iraq- and our boys do not belong in the middle of a civil war. Our troops are not policeman.

  11. So what does Hospers have to say for himself? Did Cheney use his command of the dark force to make Hospers endorse Bush?

  12. NoStar,
    Not having read the Root endorsement, I don’t know how Hospers has rectified that, umm, oversight in 2004.

  13. “Just about every presidential candidate launched a TV…”

    Through a window?
    (Of course not. That would not sit well with voters.)


  14. Hospers endorses Root. The Paul campaign is doomed! Doomed I tell you!

  15. David Wiegel:

    Tea Party was on Dec. 16!

  16. I get my xmas gifts from Hillary:

    Thanks Nation Debt!

  17. I don’t understand how John Hospers could endorse Wayne Root for President when Rudy was right there. Some libertarian Hospers is!

  18. The good news is that I’ve been libertarian (peaceful anarchist nowadays) since before it was cool?, and, while I’ve heard of Hospers…?
    Is he like Lyndon LaRouche? Harold Stasson?
    I’m thinking: Move along here. Nothing to see.

  19. The interesting thing about the Hospers endorsement is that he left the LP for the GOP long, long ago (way before 2004). I guess he doesn’t care for any of the Republican candidates this time.

  20. Merry Christmas,

    Happy Hanukkah,

    Joyous Festivus,

    Happy Eid ul-Adha (sorry I’m a day late),

    and a Happy New Year!

    to the Reason readers of all and no religions!

  21. Would you all have rather Hospers backed Badnarik?


    A great many of us Mainstream Libertarians were all prepared to back Gary Nolan or Aaron Russo for President. Then the LP stupidly picked jerkoff Badnarik!!

    What a disaster!

    The guy never even graduated college, and then he lied about it.

    Never been elected dog catcher.

    Drove around without a license or auto insurance and bragged about it.

    This is Presidential material?

    I’m not so sure Hospers chose to endorse Bush in 2004, more so send a signal to the Libertairan Party:


  22. This does indicate that Wayne Root’s got some momentum. He was on Fox News just last week, and now this.

    I’m seeing formerly skeptical diehard LPers now coming around on Root. I think at this point, you gotta say, he’s got a pretty good shot at the LP nomination.

    Kubby and Phillies may be on the downslide.


    Happy Eid ul-Adha (sorry I’m a day late)


  24. Ali:


    I looked that one up for you!


    Well, thank you! That was nice of you!

  26. Ali: no problem, no problem at all!

    Peace on earth! Good will to all men!

    and Christmas every day!

  27. I just saw Paul on C-Span and he spoke about how he disliked the CIA because it started wars and because of its clandestine nature, and then he commented about how we have to keep a very wary eye on the FBI and warrantless detective work.

    Holy shit, that was great. Why didn’t you guys tell me Paul talked like this regularly? I’ve pretty much NEVER seen a major politican talk with such sensible wariness of our federal law enforcement agencies.

  28. I will say this, Paul’s state rights attitude would, in my opinion, increase law enforcement abuses on many readers of this site. The incorporation of much of the Bill of Rights to the states by the Warren Court was a huge blow for individual rights in relation to law enforcement, one that I think that many states, especially Southern ones, would frankly have never recognized. From what I understand of Paul’s position on federalism he would chuck that. So goody for his amazing comments on federal law enforcement agencies, boo to his stance that would empower state and local cops to do all kind of crappy things.

  29. MNG- But by the constitution the president has no authority or say as to what states do. It would be left to the residents of each state to struggle to fix things.

    Anyhow, welcome to the e3VOLution!

    You may like this:

  30. Why didn’t you guys tell me Paul talked like this regularly?

    Sorry, we thought everyone already knew Paul wants to seriously downsize the unconstitutional bits of the federal government (you know, most of it). Our bad.

    Merry Christmas!

  31. Ali
    That’s my concern: minorities in States may not be as bad off as minorities in relation to the Federal Government, but they are still pretty bad off. Best that we have certain minimum rights guaranteed to all citizens, and that the federal courts enforce these rights even against the states. As long as policy does not encroach on these bare minimum rights then each state could struggle for itself.

    In theory I guess libertarians could be pro-incorporation, but I’m guessing Paul is not.

  32. prolefeed
    Merry Christmas yourself.
    I’m not sure its obvious that the FBI and CIA are unconstitutional (not that much they may enforce at any given time may be extra-constitutional). After all there are distinctly federal crimes (terrorism, interstate kidnapping or extortion rackets for example)that would need combating even in Libertopia.

  33. Rights are reaffirmed by the constitution and are a given as a birthright. Any US person (citizen?) can go to the courts (including federal) to regain these rights if a state violates them. No?

  34. OK, well, Merry Christmas everyone!

  35. MNG, let me tell you the problem with trying to impose libertarian beliefs at a federal level onto states: it only lasts as long as the nation wants libertarianism. If you keep the current system where the federal government does whatever the hell it pleases then we’re only free as long as libertarians hold majorities, and then we’re fucked again when liberals or conservatives win.

    By taking a state’s rights aproach you re-inforce into the system that the goverment has things that it’s not allowed to do. You set clear, well-defined limits on Federal power. And then you hope for the best in your state.

    It isn’t perfect, but it’s better than trying to impose libertarianism, because that way encourages the idea that the federal government can impose the popular ideology of the day, when in fact, the goal of libertarians is to ultimately make it so that our rights aren’t dependent upon the masses.

  36. Wayne Root has bologna.

  37. MNG — Agree that the FBI and CIA may be constitutional, but Ron Paul has made it clear he’d try to make them stop actions that are unconstitutional.

    Of course, the reality is that the President is heavily constrained by Congress and the judiciary, so the reality of a Ron Paul Presidency (ignoring that unlikelihood of that happening in the first place) would be a slew of overriden vetoes, plus a lot of infighting as he tried to downsize the bureaucracy by hiring freezes, etc. It might not be anywhere as big a change as people here think, but basically the federal government would be limited to, at most, whatever the 1/3 most fiscally prudent members of Congress could agree on — at least, until the impeachment proceedings started.

    It would be a lot of fun to watch the buggers scramble, yeah?

  38. It would be a lot of fun to watch the buggers scramble, yeah?

    This, right there, is the best reason to vote for Ron Paul. For pure amusement power, a Paul presidency would be the greatest thing ever. Heck, can you imagine the fun within the GOP if Paul is leading in delegates after Feb 5?

  39. I left ???????? off the end of my last post.

  40. The Boston Globe sent out questionnaires to each of the presidential candidates on the subject of signing statements and executive power in general.

    Mitt Romney, of all people, outs himself as the biggest dictator. No surprise, Ron Paul and Chris Dodd come out looking like the best small-r republicans.

    It’s on the front page of right now. Here’s the link to the story.

  41. Check this out…

    The NY Times is admitting that all those stories about Rudy Giuliani and his girlfriend traveling at taxpayer’s expense were “false.”

    Wonder if all those Rudy Bashers here at Reason who jumped on the story will now similarly admit their mistake?

    Pretty bad when ultra-liberals like the Times turn out to be more honorable than libertarians and Reason-oids.

  42. Seer, I commented here last week that Rush was going to derail Huckabee. I am considering stealing your handle.

  43. ‘was reading this Harry GWB Reid interview – trying to finger out exactly what quantity is represented by “quite a bit, but not very much”. Politicians is very smartly.


    RAY SUAREZ: Well, at the beginning of this year, the Democrats returned to the majority after 12 years in the minority. You and Speaker Pelosi announced a very ambitious agenda. Now that one year has passed and you look back, how has it gone?

    SEN. HARRY REID: Well, we’ve been able to accomplish quite a bit, but not very much, certainly not as much as I wanted to. I’m kind of frustrated, like the American people.

  44. Dondero,

    Serious question…considering the general level of validity I apply to the NYT (ranging from none at all to assuming anything they say is a lie), why should I believe them when they claim stories are false?

  45. joe – thx for posting the link, that was informative. McCain seemed a bit more about the rule of law and Romney a lot more about the rule of men than I thought they’d be.

    Edwards: “I’m not Bush!” No shit, jackass. And I hope Dodd or even Richardson make it to a Veep slot for the eventual (D) nominee, though I’m not sure how much good they could do there.

    Brickbats to Rudy Thumpabee for ducking, although in my case, the only one I’d have ever considered would be Thompson.

  46. A very strange conversation with a strange fellow last night.

    Some guy in Crystal City, claiming to be the Iowa campaign manager for Sen. McCain, stated that the McCain Christmas ad has been out for “months”. Granted, I dismissed McCain as a RINO well over 4 years ago, so I was not tracking when his ads came out, but I can not find a refrence to the Cross ad from before 20 Dec. 2007. Could one of those campaign guys be talling a big fib or something?

    Also, the resident supporter of Dr. Paul had to go around in circles about their being some distinction between National Socialists and Fascists. Sorry, the disctinction is that the latter is just s symbol for the former. BTW, nobody was accusing Dr. Paul of being a National Socialists, but his fan frequently gets accused of it (usually a big stretch as a joke whenever he advocated regulation of business).

    Oh, the McCain guy became a frothing maniac when waterboarding was mentioned and when he discovered yet another person who does not like his candidate.

  47. Dondero,

    When it comes down to Dr. Ron Paul vs. Hillary Rodham-Clinton, who will you vote for?

  48. my mother in law got me a subscription to reason magazine for christmas! WOO HOO!

  49. The NY Times is admitting that all those stories about Rudy Giuliani and his girlfriend traveling at taxpayer’s expense were “false.”

    Dondero, can you post ANYTHING without lying like a two dollar whore?

    The NY Times did NOT conclude that Giuliani did not travel with his girlfriend at the taxpayer’s expense. Everyone concedes that, including the candidate. The Times merely concluded that Giuliani hadn’t really tried to hide the expenses when he charged them to city departments other than the mayor’s office.

    Giuliani traveled with his mistress at the taxpayer’s expense to have fun in the Hamptons. And his mistress got taxied around the city and got her dog walked by NYPD officers at the taxpayer’s expense. Can’t you get even the simplest things right?

  50. Quote of the week:

    “They do not create revolution; what they do create is anarcy; and the difference between these is not a question of violence, but a question of fruitfulness and finality. Revolution of its nature produces government; anarchy only produces more anarchy…You can only knock off the King’s head once. But you can knock off the King’s hat any number of times. Destruction is finite; obstruction is infinite: so long as rebellion takes the form of mere disorder (instead of an attempt to enforce a new order) there is no logical end to it; it can feed on itself and renew itself for ever.”

    -G.K. Chesterson, What’s Wrong with The World? pg. 114.

  51. Wonder if all those Rudy Bashers here at Reason who jumped on the story will now similarly admit their mistake?

  52. Let’s try that one again…

    Wonder if all those Rudy Bashers here at Reason who jumped on the story will now similarly admit their mistake?

    I have never “bashed” Mr. Giuliani regarding his girlfriend. On the other hand, his quote about freedom being about submission to authority is worthy of all ridicule from all libertarians! Or did the NYT say they made that one up as well?

  53. “They’re less consequential than the little lizards who scurry beneath my feet and who I occasionally (accidentally) squish with a crunch.”
    Well, to be fair, if the rule of law were popular among conservatives Romney would be for it (providing the position he were running for at the time was one where conservative voters made up a majority).

    As for Rudy, I saw Judith Nathan for the first time and can say this about that: he has the hottest potential first lady that I have seen. Va-va-voom!

  54. MNG, this is somewhat disturbing, but it contradicts your hypothesis.

  55. NM,

    Had to look up who the “they” in Chesterton’s quote was.

    I chuckled.

  56. BakedPenguin,

    Arent first ladies constitutional required to be born in the US? And is she 35 yet? I know she hasnt lived in the US for 14 years.

  57. Answering my own question, she turned 30 in October.

  58. robc, are you joking? I mean, it’s not like she’ll inherit the office.

  59. BakedPenguin,

    Do you really need to ask? I will point out that Madison waited until Dolly was 41 before becoming President. They only had a 17 year age difference though.

    I mean, it’s not like she’ll inherit the office.

    Thats not what Hillary thinks.

  60. Ali,

    That means Blair is giving up his (and his wife’s) claim to the thrown. 🙂

  61. the thrown.

    This is what happens when you dont have royalty, spelling goes right out the window.

  62. That means Blair is giving up his (and his wife’s) claim to the thrown. 🙂

    I do find it strange though that he would (a) convert at all (I assume from protestantism), and (b) convert to Catholicism. For (a), I mean he’s a politician, no? When did politician think of making drastic religious conversions? Regarding (b), and I do not mean any offense to Catholics on this thread*, but does not that tell us something about the statism of Blair? I guess we all already know that he is a statist, but this sheds some new light on it.

    * One of the bigs things I personally find objectionable about the Roman Church is the emphasis on hierarchy and the infallibility of the Pope. Same goes for Shi’ism.

  63. robc – Well, you could have been seriously drunk. Erm… yeah, I should have known better.

    Ali – do you see a correlation between Catholicism (or Shia Islam) and statism? I ask because I don’t think there is anything necessarily more pro-freedom about Protestantism or Sunni Islam.

  64. BakedPenguin-

    May be not, but in both Shiism and Catholicism there is this emphasis on “church” and its “church” structure. They are both highly centralized. On the other hand, protestantism and sunni Islam are very decentralized and there is no real religious hierarchical structure. I can’t speak much for the other religions, but Islam does not have any structure. If you believe in God, there is only you and Him — no intermediaries, you do not have to go to a priest/imam for forgiveness, and there is most certainly no emphasis on the glory of the state, etc. Regarding the latter, I am not sure if you are aware of the struggle in Islam between achieving status (as individual or state) for the sake of being powerful, or for defending what you stand up for.

  65. Baked- Holy smokes Dennis has excellent powers of choice in at least one area!

    In reference to Catholicism there has been a long time thesis about its connection to authoritarianism (see Max Weber the Protestant Work Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism). Most of the arguments I have seen focus on the stifling, moribound regimes of Spain and Portugal (perhaps the most heavily Cathoic nations in Europe for centuries) compared to the dynamic regimes in England and Holland (the Protestant stalwarts). They also argue that Catholicism has inherent components that support authority (the Church as mediator between God and man, papal infallibility, and the hierarchy of the Church) and that Protestantism has inherent components that promote individuality (the priesthood of all beleivers, for example).

    Having said that, there were/are certainly many authoritatian Protestants and many libertarian minded Catholics…

  66. Also regarding the “glory of the state”, I strongly object to those Muslims who keep speaking of the glory of the Islamic Empire. I think they miss the point, just as those “Caliphs” and Muslim Emporers missed the point when they invaded other territories for the sake of expanding their powers as opposed to actually defending against the dangers posed by their adversaries. That is why I condemn many of the Islamic expansions for they were done for the want of power and a stronger Islamic state.

  67. BTW-Google image Fred Thompson’s old lady, she’s pretty hot too…

  68. I’d previously heard the idea of Protestant individualism being a necessary precursor to the idea of individual liberty in the West. I think it could have played a part, but I still believe that some amount of secularism is even more necessary for freedom.

    I think Protestantism allowed freedom in Western Europe for a different reason – that the schism between Protestantism and Catholicism meant that realm of religion had to be restricted, and those with heretical ideas often couldn’t be summarily dealt with as they had in the past.(Yes, I know this is an oversimplification).

    I say this not as an argument against religion per se, but rather as an argument against religion playing a role in political life. Islamic civilization was at its greatest when it was, I believe, more secular. How would most Islamic governments treat someone who wrote “A loaf of bread, a jug of wine, and you” today?

  69. BakedPenguin
    I think the fact of the break itself was a big factor, so I agree there. I also think it was the secular elements in Protestantism (one of the things they did in England was burn relics and other such things and try to “rationalize” Xtnianity) that would be the stimulus to freedom and progress, so I think I agree there too.

  70. How would most Islamic governments treat someone who wrote “A loaf of bread, a jug of wine, and you” today?

    I am not sure about exactly what you’re referring to, but I can say this. I do not think that any of the existing governments in majority Islamic countries are “Islamic”. Iran is a “Shiite Islamic” government, though I remember hearing something on NPR that referred to a strong sense of separation of Mosque and State in Shiism up until the Khomeiny revolution, when many Shiite religious leaders objected to the use of religion by the new government, but I am not fully aware of the details.

  71. Ali, my knowledge of Islam is limited. I know the Q’ran is quite similar to the Old testament, and that Shia and Sunni split because of a dispute over who the true successor to Mohammed was, and not much more.

    When earthly power is at stake, I don’t believe it’s the tenets of a religion that truly matter, because they will be distorted for the purposes of those who seek power. You have said on other threads there is a severe injunction against suicide in Islam. That there are still suicide bombers is a result of the distortion. There is nothing unique about this behavior to Islam, or even religion.

    My point about Khayyam is that were he to write and publish today, there are many countries where he could suffer severe punishment, or threat of death. I was thinking of the Gulf nations, but you’re right, his own birthplace, Persia, would likely have a grim fate for him. Also, when I said “Islamic governments” I meant any government that views part of its job as the enforcement of religious decrees. Malaysia would qualify.

  72. Ali

    Cherie Blair is already a Roman Catholic.

    It’s actually all in the article.

  73. BakedPenguin-

    Ah, I see and agree. Regarding Khayyam, I think he would have done well in Dubai, Qatar and Oman. Probably not in KSA or Iran. I admire Dubai a ton (though they do have to work on their treatment of foreign workers)!

    I am slowly coming to the belief that (not that I had believed otherwise before –just a matter of not thinking of it much in the past) sharia can not be enforced by a centralized government. Any just application of Sharia, if the members of a Muslim community elect to do so (as long as they do not interfere with established laws of the land, or if they have autonomy over the land they inhabit), they have to do it subjectively and locally. Otherwise abuses of the principles of Islam and of the individuals participating are bound to occur.

    Now what I just said could put me in trouble with the Islamists, but quite frankly I do not care about them!

  74. Isaac,

    Yeah, just thought to initiate a discussion here, though.

  75. Isaac, Oh and by the way, this is “iih” if you have not been following H&R recently. All thanks to, oddly enough, Dondero!

  76. NoStar, if it comes down to Ron Paul or Hillary Clinton I will vote Libertarian, no matter who the Nominee is — hopefully Wayne Root, but even if I have to hold my nose and vote for Kubby or Phillies. (I actually like both Steve and George on a personal level. George has been on my show, and he’s quite a genuine sincere fellow – though his views on foreign policy are absolutely atrocious.)

  77. Oh my God! I should have mentioned a $1,000,000! instead I mention Eric and 1 minute, lo and behold, he shows up! Darn, I just lost myself a ton of money!

  78. More breaking news…

    Now up at

    2006 Libertarian candidate Bob Smither may switch to Republican, and run for the Tom DeLay seat for Congress. It’s being reported by at least one reliable Texas news website.

  79. Eric:

    Pollster John Zogby: “Ron Paul: He’s going to do better than anyone expects. Look to Paul to climb into the double-digits in Iowa. Why? He’s different, he stands out. He’s against the war and he has the one in four Republicans who oppose the war all to himself. Libertarianism is hot, especially among free-market Republicans and 20-somethings. And he’s an appealing sort of father figure. He’s his own brand. All he needs to do is beat a couple of big names in Iowa, then New Hampshire is friendlier territory. After all, the state motto is “Live Free or Die.”

    Article here.

  80. Ali, Florida Quinipiac poll, Ron Paul…


    That’s Two Percent. As in the number (2).

    10 months of campaigning and Ron Paul is at 2% in Florida.

    Why is it that Floridians dislike Ron Paul so much?

    And why is it Californians dislike him too? Can’t seem to climb out of the 3% hole in Cali.

  81. Ali, just a guess here, but would Zogby’s alleged ties to CAIR have something to do with his allegiance to the Anti-War/Pro-Palestinian Ron Paul?

    Just a guess.

  82. Eric,

    Could be!

    I am not a member of CAIR and don’t know exactly what they are up to (I do receive their emails though), but why are they bad? I am sure you can elucidate.

  83. But, Ron Paul pro-Palestinian? Huh?

    You should read this, then.

  84. And what is wrong with being pro-Palestinian anyways? It does not automatically mean that being pro-Palestinian is to be anti-Israel! You know, there are people out there who do not believe, it seem like you, that it is a zero sum game. Ron Paul does not. I do not. Do you?

  85. Ali, Florida Quinipiac poll, Ron Paul…


    So where is the rest of the Florida Nazi vote going?

  86. “Ali, just a guess here, but would Zogby’s alleged ties to CAIR have something to do with his allegiance to the Anti-War/Pro-Palestinian Ron Paul?”
    Yeah Donderdo, CAIR used their wide influence to bump the (according to you) anti-Semite Paul from 2 to 3%.

    Are you just trying to be an ignorant *sshole or what?

  87. MNG-

    And the funny thing is that Muslims overwhelming don’t want Paul! They are split between Hillary and Obama (and no Dondero, not because he is Barak Hussein Obama). I once suggested to an (intellectual) Muslim that he votes Paul and got nothing back but a look of disgust on his face and as if I were crazy.

  88. Gold Standard folks: just remember it is much harder to light your bigh giant cigars with silver or gold than it is with paper money.

    Don’t singe your tophat.

  89. Ali, Barack Hussein Obama will be our first ever Muslim President. Are you excited about that prospect?

  90. Obama would be preferable to any Republican candidate other than Paul.

    You’re just so locked in to your “liberty caucus” battered wife mindset that you can’t see the simple fact that when two candidates walk up to you and say,

    Candidate One: “I will raise your taxes 3%,”


    Candidate Two: “I will leave your taxes the same but will detain people in secret prisons and torture the shit out of them, while I spy on your email and voice traffic to make sure you don’t complain about it too much,”

    Candidate One is better for libertarians than Candidate Two. This is simply beyond dispute by anyone who isn’t a fucking psychopath.

  91. …the funny thing is that Muslims overwhelming[ly] don’t want Paul!

    Then you have a lot of work to do.

  92. Are you just trying to be an ignorant *sshole or what?


  93. ED,

    B. Hussein Obama happens to be Christian, if we are speaking in the present tense and much of the past.

  94. BakedPenguin-

    Working on it! Trust me.

  95. Guy-

    B. Hussein Obama happens to be Christian, if we are speaking in the present tense and much of the past.

    That is true.

    Plus, Eric, Muslims can’t be voting Obama because he is “Muslim”. If anything the idea of a Muslim claiming NOT to be Muslim to seek power would be abhorring to most Muslims as a matter of principle. Hypocrisy in Islam is one of the worst sins. Just saying.

    But why then are they leaning Obama? Because he is the least of all the evils out there from their viewpoint. I, however, think that Paul is the only good out there.

  96. Eric Dondero, Rudi Guiliani will be our forty-fourth white, Christian president.

    Does that idea excite you? A perfect 44 for 44 run?

    No? Then how about laying the fuck off Ali?

  97. Ali,

    It’s going to take a long, long time for the GOP to dig itself out of its hole among Muslim Americans.

    That’s ok. For the next forty years, we’re going to get to read National Review writers explain that “Democrats would never win a race without the support of women, African-Americans, Jews, Latinos and Muslims,” as opposed to just “…women, African-Americans, Jews, and Latinos…”

  98. joe-

    No? Then how about laying the fuck off Ali?

    Haha! Thanks!

    It’s going to take a long, long time for the GOP to dig itself out of its hole among Muslim Americans.

    The days when the GOP would get 80% of the Muslim and Arab vote (e.g., in 2000) –anywhere between 2.5M and 5M people– are long gone. It will take a lot of Dem screw ups to repel them away from the DP.

    That’s ok. For the next forty years, we’re going to get to read National Review writers explain that “Democrats would never win a race without the support of women, African-Americans, Jews, Latinos and Muslims,” as opposed to just “…women, African-Americans, Jews, and Latinos…”

    Haha… very true. You probably hear Jay Severin. That is exactly his kind of line of argument (though he only says African Americans and Latinos. Now he has one more reason to attack Dems — that they are Islamofaschist huggers).

  99. 80%?


    I knew Bush won them, but 80%?

    It will take a lot of Dem screw ups to repel them away from the DP. Hm, good point – they’ll probably be back on Team Red by 2016.

    Haha… very true. You probably hear Jay Severin.

    I recall one GOPer talking head who actually explained that “blacks, women, and minorities” vote for Democrats, while “ordinary people” vote for Republicans.

  100. joe- Yes, I can’t find the exact reference now but I am pretty sure of it. In 2004, it was literally 0% support for Bush!

    I recall one GOPer talking head who actually explained that “blacks, women, and minorities” vote for Democrats, while “ordinary people” vote for Republicans.

    What a repulsive way of thinking. In fact, it reflects that talking head’s own internal racism.

  101. … let me add that he won them on social issues, “humble foreign policies”, and on repealing congressional acts that Muslims and Arabs viewed as being directed directly at them. Of course, other than social issues, Bush screwed them on the other two things.

    So to ask them to support a Republican, from Texas(!) is almost asking the impossible. But I think that some of them are rethinking about what the Dems will actually do. They overall distrust the system.

  102. What “congressional acts that Muslims and Arabs viewed as directed directly at them” are you thinkin of, Ali?

  103. joe,

    Hillary Clinton may break the Democrat Party lock on the African-American vote. If she does it couldn’t be blamed on a nicer gal.

  104. Political thread commentary, international desk:

    PPP apparently victorious with a plurality in the Thai parliamentary election.

    This is good news. While I think I personally would probably be more politically aligned with the coup and its political allies(yes, seriously), it is good that the voters have rebuked such a seizure of power. And its good that the junta has allowed this result to occur even though it is obviously against their interests.

    Now, the true test is whether the junta will intervene against the PPP forming a government. They are undoubtedly going to do behind the scenes stuff; the question if they will do something more visibly like arrest Thaksin again, or physically prevent the parliament from meeting.

  105. joe, there were a few laws from before 2000 that go back to the 80s and 90s (often for good reasons, as in the 92 WTC attack). While I personally see that there should be laws to counter terrorism, some Arabs saw it as an infringement on their civil liberties.

    I am not against some sort of racial profiling at airports etc, but I think that there should certainly be guarantees and checks and balances on those who carry out racial profiling.

  106. SIV, you are so deluded.

    The Republicans are always just about to crack that 12% line, aren’t they?

    Tell the truth: have you ever looked a single poll that breaks down the opinions of Democratic voters about the candidates by race?

    Even one? Ever? Tell the truth.

  107. Kolohe – didn’t Thaksin get his support by basically buying rural voters? IIRC, he had very anti-urban policies. (The article you linked to mentions the PPP didn’t do well in Bangkok).

    That said, a military coup was not the answer.

  108. BakedPenguin-
    Possibly, (or even probably). Like I said, I basic agree with what the junta stood for politically.

    Except for the whole “let’s seize power though a military coup” thing. This is why I’m glad they lost.

    I would love for this to play out as a Allende -> Pincohet -> political pluralism dynamic under a Feiler Faster Principle, and with a hell of lot fewer deaths and ‘desaparecidos.’
    Clamping down on corruption is vitally important for this to work in in the medium and long term. In the short term, however, the ball is now in the junta’s possession, and for the time they must give it up on downs.

  109. joe — thanks for the link on the answers about presidential powers. As usual, the folks trailing in the races gave the best, and most humble answers about the limits on presidential powers — Dodd, Richardson, Paul, and McCain. Romney was terrible, but the worst answers were the non-answers IMO by Giuliani, Huckabee et. al. — slightly better to admit to having a voracious desire for power than to feel you don’t need to condescend to even answer such a vital question.

  110. On further thought, I don’t think it’s at all surprising that Romney was the worst. He’s the one with the biggest background in the top tiers of the private sector economy, and CEO’s and other corporate chieftains are used to a level of executive power that would make Henry VII blush.

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