Campaigns/Elections

The Tragic Nature of Youthful Ron Paul Supporters

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The magazine that endorsed Vinegar Joe Lieberman for president in 2004 reports on the Ron Paul machine from chilly Iowa:

There's something that seems a little tragic about the Paul volunteers' devotion–they're spending their Christmas vacation in chilly cabins, eating Velveeta potatoes for a week, and their candidate doesn't arrive in Iowa until the day before the caucus–until I see that it's not really about Paul. They almost never mention his biography or his leadership style when talking about their movement, a startling contrast with rival campaigns like Huckabee's or Obama's. I ask Eli, the student who would have bought Joe's graphic history of World War I, whether he thinks Ron Paul has charisma. Eli pauses. "He's so nice," he replies. "He reminds me of your grandpa–your righteous grandpa." A volunteer named Eddie in a tidy checked Oxford shirt says, "He did a rally with us the first night and shook everybody's hand. It was cute."

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  1. Sounds like the author was more than a little enchanted by the entire experience!

  2. It was a nice article, but I doubt there’s anything tragic about missing part of winter vacation to be active in a political contest.

  3. This is something that I wish I could have done – too bad I’m too old.

    Oh well, at least some of my money was there. I hope it had fun.

  4. Is it beeter for the draw to be the message or the man? I would think the message would live on longer than the man’s popularity, but I wonder.

  5. Doesn’t sound tragic at all. Friend of mine is doing something similar, though he’s in NH (our neck of the woods) and he’s never been involved in politics before.

    The only thing that could really suck coming out of this is, like McGovern in ’72, if a bunch of young folk get excited about a candidate and get really invested and then have their hopes dashed into a million unfriendly pieces, they may be ruined on politics for life.

  6. Calling Lieberman “Vinegar” never gets old. I’m serious.

  7. I was there last week, heading to South Carolina on the 4th.

  8. OMFG! Youngsters are participating in what may be vied as the biggest political process in the world. We all know they really should be out pursuing the ever popular beer bongs and bj’s. GOD FORBID!

    And just wtf is wrong with velveeta taters???

  9. / vied = viewed

  10. A spell-binding orator he isn’t. But he makes it more likely that, eventually, one will come along for us. Someone with significant political accomplishments. Someone with high name recognition at the start of the campaign.
    RP’s campaign will legitimize a generation of younger libertarian politicians. His campaign will result in the GOP seeking to keep RP voters in the fold. And, I’ll say it again, we need a nationwide grassroots libertarian organization(s) to keep advocating libertarian principles and issues once the election is over.

  11. This is a subtly brilliant point:

    “When (Paul supporter) Nickel muses, ‘I think centrists are the most extremist, because they don’t believe in anything but people,’ it suddenly seems to make a lot of sense.”

  12. On this matter, I hope that after the 2008 election is over that the organizational structure set up to support Paul will undergo a maturation process over the following years and become even more of a force, only this time supporting a candidate who is more electable… oh, and who also has a better immigration stance.

  13. Nick,

    Your title and intro are a little misleading. With the excerpt you used, I was expecting a negatively smug article but it was actually very good.

    Just a thought.

  14. @creech

    A spell-binding orator he isn’t. But he makes it more likely that, eventually, one will come along for us. Someone with significant political accomplishments. Someone with high name recognition at the start of the campaign.

    Agreed. Ron Paul is our Bill Haley, paving the way for an Elvis….

  15. He doesn’t have the voice of an orator, but sticking to his guns when Rudy jumped on him during that first debate won my liberal sister-in-law’s respect.

    People sense his courage under fire, and that seems to be enough.

  16. Here’s a strategy for dealing with certain trolls (Dondero, Edward, and some other guy):

    Whenever they post some disparagement of Ron Paul or posters for supporting Ron Paul, let us post a pledge of $5 or $10 to the Ron Paul campaign.

  17. The new republic seems to give more favorable press to Ron Paul than Reason…

    maybe they could start a article like this “the magazine that backs Michael Young(a military industrial complex gadfly and warmongering foreign policy advocate) sometimes backs libertarian leaning politicians as well.

  18. Are you kidding me?
    “The Tragic Nature of Youthful Ron Paul Supporters”…
    So the article was quite refreshing and honest… quite nice! But the title of the piece SUCKS! Perhaps under other circumstances the title might be funny, but at a time where there are accusations of press malfeasance this was either very poor judgement or a deliberate act to hide the “niceness” of the article. No kudos to the author are desrved. This is political doublespeak. Many people skim the headlines for the unusual or interesting. How may discouraging and disparaging comments, headlines etc have been thrown at the grassroots movement in attempts to stifle it’s growth? Answer: Too many.

  19. Here’s a strategy for dealing with certain trolls (Dondero, Edward, and some other guy):

    Whenever they post some disparagement of Ron Paul or posters for supporting Ron Paul, let us post a pledge of $5 or $10 to the Ron Paul campaign.

    Kind of like the “for every animal you don’t eat, I’ll eat three” campaign? I like it…

  20. Sam,

    I think we’d hit our limit on day 1..Edward is as prolific as he is disparaging.

  21. Didn’t RTA, but I know the *New Republic* has to be cooler than *Reason*? Did Hayden (“Darth Vader”) Christensen every play a *Reason* editor in a movie? I don’t think so.

    http://imdb.com/title/tt0323944/

  22. Taktix –
    Just how do you count how many animals a person doesn’t eat, anyway?

    just curious

  23. Heh.. A liberal goes looking for someone to pour her condescension over, and finds out that they don’t fit her prejudices. Love it.

    -jcr

  24. Journeyman, keep in mind that the reporter doesn’t write the headline.

  25. Sorry, I see the comment was aimed at Nick’s headline (not the article’s). I assume he did write this headline.

  26. “A spell-binding orator he isn’t. ”

    You don’t have to be a great orator if you’re telling the truth.

    -jcr

  27. Didn’t RTA, but the *New Republic* is way cooler than *Reason.* Did Hayden (“Darth Vader”) Christensen ever play a *Reason* editor in a movie? I don’t think so.

    http://imdb.com/title/tt0323944/

  28. Taktix –
    Just how do you count how many animals a person doesn’t eat, anyway?

    just curious

    Well, if animals is x, then:

    x=SQUAREROOT(1/2(people^3*(vegtables/4x+1)))

    Simple, really…

  29. Nick, the article was actually quite positive; your title: not so much.

    Please take the stick outta yer ass in regards to Ron Paul. It seems you missed the boat on the good doctor, and ever since you’ve had it in for him. Taking swipes here an there. I love reason magazine, but you come across as a smug piece of shit.

    Immediately report to central planning agency and exchange your leather jacket for a tweed one.

  30. Max,

    Actually, I would think that having Hayden appear as Glass pretty much dooms TNR to be labelled a dorky, whiny magazine forevermore.

  31. I took Nick’s headline as ironic, especially given the source of the article.

    Max – I dunno. Did he suck as bad in that movie as he did in episode II & III?

  32. I watched Episode III with the accompanying RiffTrax and it made it SO much more watchable.

  33. What kind of geek have I become that Episodes II and III are unwatchable but I forage the internet for Ron Paul news?

  34. RON PAUL

    He makes children sing.

    Vote Ron Paul.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TeFDValQhpg&feature=related

  35. Thanx for the RiffTrax link!

  36. Actually, he’s not that bad in Shattered Glass, probably because he’s SUPPOSED to be a weasel.

    Cast Hayden as a weasel = Success.

    Cast Hayden as the greatest cinema villain of all time = Fail.

  37. Nick G. called Murray Rothbard and anyone who supports the “states rights line of crap” a old white racist. He was yelling this stuff at me at teh 18th street lounge in about 1999-2000…given Ron Paul’s links to lew rockwell/Rothbard and the old fashioned notions of states rights I think it is likely that Nick ain’t too big a fan of Ron Paul and this doesn’t show up in his editing…especially if he has anything to do with paying Micahel Young.

  38. I think we’d hit our limit on day 1..Edward is as prolific as he is disparaging.

    Make sure they know what we’re doing.

  39. They’re not missing their winter break for Ron Paul, but because they care about the message he espouses. They’re out there for themselves, for their own future, because they want to be free.

  40. Reinmoose – I agree w/ gintbr – thanks for the link.

    Fluffy – I did a “review” of sorts for I Am Legend, basically hating on Will Smith. I said that I didn’t want to see a movie where he was supposed to be a real hero, because I couldn’t believe someone that narcissistic in that role. Yet I thought he was okay in Men In Black, because smarmy and smug didn’t detract from that role.

  41. btw – January 11th the last day for non party affiliated voters to register and vote in the New York State republican primary (for Dr. Paul!) on February 5th.

  42. NP guys. Also, May I strongly recommend the RiffTrax for Episode I and Daredevil?

    Not all of the RiffTrax are equally funny, but they’re really good for movies that they have absolutely no respect for.

  43. NY Voter,

    I’m not sure you have that correct. I thought October 12, 2007 was the last day to register as a Republican if you were going to vote in the primary. Perhaps there is a distinction between changing parties and going from unaffiliated status to Republican? Or from a non-registered status to registered Republican?

  44. Please take the stick outta yer ass in regards to Ron Paul. It seems you missed the boat on the good doctor, and ever since you’ve had it in for him. Taking swipes here an there. I love reason magazine, but you come across as a smug piece of shit.

    I think the Reason/Cato crowd is in a bit of a pout because the libertarian parade has already left without them. Not that that was a bad move on the part of libertarians.

  45. These young Americans are doing what a lot of other Americans should be doing, and that is caring about their country, and supporting Ron Paul. Actually, Ron Paul has supporters from all ages, I am pushing 50. I for one, am very proud of these young Americans. Ron Paul’s message has caught on, and will continue to do so, whether it be this election cycle or not. The message of Liberty, and Freedom is very popular. I just hope that these young Americans keep up the good fight for all of us no matter what. Ron Paul has my vote and support. I would like to say thank you for printing this story, and thank you to those wonderful volunteers who are spreading this Hope for America.

  46. What a great piece ! everyone should Youtube : votefraud and watch parts 1-5

  47. “There’s something that seems a little tragic about the Paul volunteers’ devotion–they’re spending their Christmas vacation in chilly cabins, eating Velveeta potatoes for a week, and their candidate doesn’t arrive in Iowa until the day before the caucus–until I see that it’s not really about Paul.”

    Oh, yeah. That’s so tragic…America’s youth working peacefully towards advancing the principles of liberty and law. So sad – just think, if they succeed then tens of thousands of career crooks and looters would be removed from the government’s welfare. Wouldn’t it be a crying shame if the military contractors weren’t able to inflate their profit margins by ten, one hundred, a thousand, or more times a reasonable amount? I guess that would be tragic.

    Someone should go stop these people before some fat cat can’t get that extra Ferrari for their 16 old daughter.

  48. You morons, Nick was making fun of the author’s condescension by aping the “tragic” comment.

    As for me, what I thought was tragic was the absence of drinkin’ and fuckin’. I know Dr. Paul doesn’t hit the chronic, but I’d hope some of my campaign donations went for papers, at least.

  49. Finally someone actually got the supporters right. I am also a History nerd, and lately, thanks to Dr Paul, am also becoming an economics nerd to boot…

    The thing that he left off is that the movement is made up of purists and diehards from different movements. I have friends that are into guns who love him for the second amendment, people like his absolutist small government stance, people like his stand on the income tax, people like his stand on the war… you add all these factions up and you get a large base that has not had a candidate before… hense the great fundraising. He gives all the purists out there hope, even if they disagree with him on some things, they know that he will be absolute on the important issues that they do agree with him on.

  50. I just wanted to write and thank you, Nick Gillespie, for your terrific debate with the neo-con Bill Oh Really. You were very forceful and wouldn’t let him interrupt and overpower you, like he does so often. Thanks for schooling him the way you did.

  51. Nick, you MIGHT HAVE quoted 2 Paul supporters to pad your article. I bet you scoured the area for those two. Come clean Nick.

    You say….’They almost never mention his biography or his leadership style when talking about their movement, a startling contrast with rival campaigns like Huckabee’s or Obama’s.’

    Are you talking about those 2 guys or did you dig deeper and poll the crowd…weak…weak…

    Go Ron Paul 2008!

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