Campaigns/Elections

Ron Paul Runs; Reporters React

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Ron Paul made his 2012 GOP presidential bid officially officially official today. Some reactions:

Christian Science Monitor:

But unlike [Paul's] efforts in 1988 or 2008, the explosion of US debt along with the weakening of the US dollar have turned his fringe talking points into mainstream issues. Paul was a one-man tea party before the tea party movement emerged in 2009, and his consistency as a fiscal conservative certainly gives him major street cred.

* Michael Crowley at Time lamely defends leaving Paul out of official GOP oddsmaking, while pointing out that in fact he's got more objective juice behind him than most of the other wanna-bes:

Why, then, would an oddsmaker like [Mark] Halperin ignore Paul? Because for all the money and hype the man generated last time around, he barely made a dent at the ballot box. After peaking with a 10 percent showing in the 2008 Iowa caucuses, he finished in the mid-to-low single digits in New Hampshire, South Carolina, Florida and other key primaries. In all, Paul wound up with 35 delegates at the convention–more than big boys like Rudy Giuliani and Fred Thompson, to be sure (both wound up with goose eggs), but a negligible fraction of the party's nearly 2400 total delegates.

And how many delegates have most of the other candidates ever won?

* The Republican Jewish Coalition doesn't like his anti-foreign aid stance.

Huffington Post sums up some of his best aspects:

He is known for holding unconventional views while keeping a smile on his face, espousing a sort of modern Republican populism without the fangs. The obstetrician has delivered more than 4,000 babies and is personally against abortion, but he doesn't think the federal government should regulate it. That's a function of state government, he says.

He has also said he wants to abolish the Internal Revenue Service, favors returning the United States to the gold standard in monetary policy and wants the U.S out of Iraq and Afghanistan.

* The OC Weekly from Southern California lists 10 Reasons to Love Ron Paul:

1) He opposes capital punishment.

2) He supports expanding ballot access to third-party candidates.

3) He opposes the War on Drugs.

4) He opposes "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

5) He opposes the Patriot Act and torture.

6) He opposes government I.D. cards.

7) In 2009, he was one of two Members of Congress who pledged to reject U.S. government pensions.

8) He was one of four Republicans who last month voted against the GOP's so-called "Path to Prosperity" budget proposal.

9) He called Ronald Reagan a failure.

10) Nolan Ryan is a pal.

* CBS News with some good straight reporting on the announcement:

"The revolution is spreading, and the momentum is building," he said. "Our time has come."

Pointing to the role of technology in spreading his beliefs, Paul suggested that an "intellectual revolution" is underway and has helped people understand that "government isn't the solution, government really has created the problem."

Paul said that the federal government should not be an "intervener," either in personal liberty or foreign policy. He said a president should show strength not by policing the world but by "standing up for liberty" and keeping the federal government from unnecessary interference.

"I take a strict constitutional position, that the government has very little authority to get involved in our economic or personal lives," he said.

Paul pointed to the question of drug use to make his point. He said Americans "have a freedom of choice with [their] bodies," calling the idea a "basic principle of liberty." He complained that while Americans take freedom of speech and freedom of religion as a given, they "have conceded way too much to the government to decide what we put into our bodies."

Paul said that pundits "wanted to paint me as this monster" because he has said that he believes heroin should not be illegal on a federal level. Saying that he "happen[s] to have a personal real disgust with the abuse of drugs"—both illegal and prescription—Paul said that didn't mean people shouldn't have the freedom to make their own choices.

"You also have to have responsibility for what you do, and if you do harm to yourself you can't go calling to the government to penalize your neighbor to take care of you," he said.

Watch some video of his announcement, where he sounds very federalist (and makes a nod to the "Codex Alimantarius" crowd by saying the U.N. should have no authority over nutritional supplements) and calls for an end to federal intervention in education, and any foreign intervention or inflation:

UPDATE: Video of the entire announcement speech, nearly 40 minutes:


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  1. I can never look at him without wondering just how much his weird eyebrows have to do with his inability to catch on with mainstream voters.

    I’m a libertarian, but even for me they’re almost a deal breaker.

    1. Nah. I’ve met him and didn’t even notice until you mentioned it. Besides, he’s too old for people to be worrying about his appearance.

      1. Anyone else notice that the older people get the more like a chimpanzee they look?

        1. Some look more like a gorilla.

          1. Not true. Patrick Ewing looked like a chimp his freshman year at Georgetown.

  2. He’s friends with Nolan Ryan?! He could easily take the Texas primary if Ryan started promoting him.

  3. It make me mad when people accuse him of isolationism. He’s a strong proponent of free trade and diplomacy. There’s nothing isolationist about that.

  4. Codex Alimentarius? The fuh?

    It seems to involve someone named “General Stubblebine.”

  5. I hope Mitt Romney and Donald Trump die in a fire.

    1. Not cool! I’d take either of them over Huck or Santorum.

      1. Of those four: Huckster, Mittens, self-immolation at the White House gate

        1. But not Santorum? How could he possibly be any better than Huck?

          1. How about Thomas Jefferson? JEFFERSON FOR PRESIDENT in 2012.

            1. How about Thomas Jefferson? JEFFERSON FOR PRESIDENT in 2012.

              He’s dead, you insensitive clod.

              1. Show me where in the Constitution …

                1. I think the two-term limit could be read to apply here.

          2. Santorum would likely let you keep more of your money. As much as him and Schmuckabee are both nannies, I think Schmuckabee would be the worst of the nannies. Picture Santorum’s moral nannying coupled with Bloomberg’s health nannying.

            Plus with Santorum, we could always adapt Metallica’s Sanitarium as a Protest song…

            Saaaaantorum.

            Leave me be.

            Saaaantorum.

            Just leave me alone….

          3. Meant that as my order of preference, with Santorum and Trump being equivalent since the result is self-immolation.

            I actually have some mild level of respect for Huck. I don’t agree with him, but I think he’s actually thought things through and is sincere in his beliefs. Living under his regime would be more bearable than Obama or Bush, given that he’s no wronger than either and has the added benefit of not being an evil person, just a wrong person.

            Oddly enough, it was his dust up with RP over foreign policy in a 2008 debate that solidified that for me. Both candidates were respectful and sincere. I even got the sense that Huck was probably the only person on the stage whom Paul didn’t hate.

            1. Santorum’s religulous nannying + Bloomberg’s health nannying + Dodd’s financial nannying = Huckabee’s super nannying.

              Dude is like the Captain Planet of nannies. Screw that guy

              1. I think Santorum’s religious nannying is worse than that of any other candidate. At least Huck knows a little about economics, unlike Santorum.

                1. 2 worst nannyisms: religious nannyism and environmental nannyism.

                  That said, I’ve come to the conclusion that they are virtually identical. All one need do is change the names involved a bit, but the argument is the same.

    2. No need, they’ll self-destruct on their own.

  6. Not surprisingly, even the articles that point out his strengths as a candidate (you know, supporters, enthusiasm, fundraising, a consistent record) are quick to claim that he’s unlikely to win.

    Time’s article was ridiculous: he has the most actual supporters, his ideas are catching on, he can raise money with the best of them, but no, why would we bother to even rank him? Pawlenty and Daniels might be running!

    1. It’s beyond pathetic. I say we all do our best to marginalize Time.

      1. The American public apparently was on board before you even brought it up.

    2. He’s catching on, i’m tellin’ ya…

  7. And no, he didn’t “peak” at 10 percent in Iowa. He peaked later on in the campaign, after quixotic contenders like Rudy Giuliani and Fred Thompson dropped out. I recall finishes closer to 20 percent (or higher) in Minnesota, Alaska, Montana, etc.

    1. Here you go:

      http://politics.nytimes.com/el…..lts/votes/

      He hit the high teens to low twenties in a number of Rocky Mountain states.

    2. And no, he didn’t “peak” at 10 percent in Iowa.

      I read that to mean that he never got above 10% in Iowa.

  8. He doesn’t have a chance. He’s against war.

  9. Well, well, well. I suppose now we’ll find out whether the public is really ready to pick the captain who wants to start turning the ship, or one of the gaggle who think we should stay the course, trifling matters like icebergs be damned.

    Lots of luck, Ron!

    1. +1

    2. +7% at least!

  10. Good times for a change
    See, the luck I’ve had
    Can make a good man
    Turn bad

    So please please please
    Let me, let me, let me
    Let me get what I want
    This time

    Haven’t had a dream in a long time
    See, the life I’ve had
    Can make a good man bad

    So for once in my life
    Let me get what I want
    Lord knows, it would be the first time
    Lord knows, it would be the first time

    1. As Antony said to Cleopatra
      As he opened a crate of ale.
      Some girls are bigger than others.
      Some girls are bigger than others.
      Some girls’ mothers are bigger than other girls’ mothers.

  11. “Third time’s a charm, Freckles.”

  12. CBS News with some good straight reporting

    I am astounded that this actually happened.

    Is it just me or does simply reporting the facts in main stream news simultaneously seems like a throw back and refreshing?

    1. To me it doesn’t seem so much “old school” as it does novel.

  13. RON PAUL GARY JOHNSON 2012, BEST OF THE PLAUSIBLE CONTENDERS.

    I’ll probably suffer a minor mind-fuck during the election, enter a stupor, and wake up to some neo-con ball-gobbler as President-elect. Whoa! Deja vu!

    1. Of all of the possible contenders it is Trump who scares me the most. After his statements about “seizing oil wells” and imposing more tariffs on China I am afraid he could get us into yet another war. That is the LAST thing we need right now. Sure, he may be a decent businessman (who knows how to use bankruptcy law to his advantage) but that does not mean I want his finger on the red button.

      1. I see Trump, and I see some hybrid of Mussolini and Kruschev.

        1. +1

          I think I’m going to use this one!

        2. I see Trump, and I see some hybrid of Mussolini and Kruschev

          I see a closet Democrat who was doing his best to make the Republicans look like idiots.

      2. If that’s what you like, stay with me.

      3. I think Sanatorium is far scarier

  14. If he could win a primary or two, especially in the early states, it’ll be a great boon to the movement.

    He’s not gonna win, but he can make a difference. He can be our Goldwater.

    1. He is not going to win because, while he’s a good representative, he’s not a good “politician”. That’s a compliment, not an insult. I do think you’re right that he can make more of a difference as a candidate in shaping the issues than he did last go around. His ideas have caught on around the country which makes it much more difficult for the GOP/DNC/Media Morons to marginalize him by treating him like the lone crazy old loon.

  15. Can we please find out who ran Paul’s awful 2008 campaign and drop them off in an exitless corn maze somewhere?

    Never in the history of politics has so much well-meant money been wasted so well.

    1. Wasted? Hell, was it even used at all? I never saw even one presidential campaign add on television for Paul. On the other hand I did see some congressional campaign adds.

      1. campaign election laws make it so that you can’t use presidential money raised for a congressional race, if that’s what you’re insinuating. of course he would make ads for his congressional campaign in texas, everyone knew he wasn’t going to become president, and we couldn’t afford to lose him in the house

  16. The GOP nominations process is heavily managed by insiders. RP is not nearly enough of a cynical, soulless empty suit lacking in all principles for them. Mitt Romney fits the bill.

    1. Besides, it’s his “turn”. I don’t think the GOP puts any more thought into it than that.

    2. Mitt Romney fits the bill.

      Then why didn’t he get it in 2008?

      The GOP nominations process is heavily managed by insiders.

      This is factually incorrect. They are less managed then Democrats are…but more apt to follow the management.

      1. It wasn’t Mitt’s turn in 2008. It was McCain’s. Since Mitt played nice and campaigned for McCain, you can be sure he’s got the insider status sewn up.

        The wild card is whether Romneycare will derail him regardless of that.

        1. There is no insider picked turn as you are implying.

          McCain got the votes in 2000….Mitt did not get the votes in 2008 that Ron Paul did.

          You are confusing a “turn” based on insider choice with a “turn” based on general conservative voter solidarity.

          It is democrats who try to pick thier candidates in samll smoke filled rooms.

          Republicans act more like an inbred monoculture herd that charge off in the same unthinking direction.

        2. how is that a wildcard? how many republicans like romneycare?

      2. Then why didn’t he get it in 2008?

        Better to feed the old guy (McCain) to the lions of Hope and Change than Mitt who the insiders actually like and want to win.

    3. How the fuck do you know so much about the GOP nomination process? I’m not defending the GOP at all. But you come up with some pretty ridiculous assertions sometimes. Hoe is your team any better?

      1. Tony forgets that delegates at Democrat conventions have been bared beating and imprisoned.

        His interpretation of “heavy management” means less management then what goes on with Democrats.

      2. My team is better because it is populated by sane people, on the whole.

        I think it’s funny how people come out of the woodwork to defend the GOP on these boards.

        1. I wasn’t defending the GOP. I was pointing out how stupid you sound. Your response proves my point.

        2. The real question is: how is your party populated by sane people?

          1. The sane party chose to Bomb Libya because freeing the peace loving terrorists, thugs, and tribalists there would only take a few days and they know about the use of the special bombs that will insure that the moderates and liberals will win any civil war aftermath.

            Also they are sane because they know we need to spend more to get out of debt and that raising the minimum wage is the single best job creating policy ever.

            Oh and they are better at herding the unicorns of the market so as to create two summers of economic recovery.

            Plus giving money to GM while raping GMs creditors will make money.

            Also shutting down all safe non-spilling oil rigs will prevent BP from spilling oil.

            and the way to create jobs is to sue Boing to prevent the opening of their new plant in SC.

            Finally giving billions to Wallstreet is how you correct the failed unregulated market policies of the past….that and give insurance companies a license to rape every last cent from their now government mandated-to-be-by-virtue-of-their-birth consumers….with the side bonus that forcing consumers to buy healthcare will with the power of He-Man’s sword make healthcare less expensive.

          2. No the real question is how did a major American political party get taken over by insane people. I’m not partisan for any reason other than one major political party does not value facts and that makes them dangerous.

        3. It is not a defense it is correcting your innumerable inaccuracies.

          hell we correct not only when you get facts wrong about republicans and libertarians we constantly correct you when you get shit wrong about democrats.

          You are constantly wrong about all sorts of shit.

          It is not our fault that you mostly talk about Republicans giving the appearance that that we correct you on them alone.

    4. RP is not nearly enough of a cynical, soulless empty suit lacking in all principles for them.

      Why Tony, I think that’s the nicest thing you’ve ever said.

  17. I have to laugh at the argument that “he has no serious chance of winning”. Pfah, neither did Bob Dole or Walter Mondale but they were taken seriously.

    1. Bob Dole had a chance…

      But the economy recovered, he fell off a podium and Perot ran again to take 9% of the vote.

      I swear to god no one pays attention when elections are actually going on….or at least completely forgets what happened after the fact.

    2. Bob Dole is still taken seriously.

      1. Bob Dole could beat Obama.

        Clinton’s win can easily be scored as due to his sliminess. Obama on the other hand has only shown himself to be an immovable statue doomed to be bulldozed over…

        Plus the economy is virtually guaranteed to suck.

      2. Yes you are ….in the circles where STEVE SMITH travels.

  18. I meant to say, Mitt’s “turn”.

  19. Ron really needs a speech coach … christ he rambles a lot

    1. “um um um um err err errr i like pancakes THE FED MUST BE ABOLISHED” is better than “My dear compatriots, the time has come to heal humanity and to rid ourselves of injustice and inequality! We surely must, in the name of all that is right and good in our world, preserve the Atlas that is the Federal Reserve, holding us above the reach of Mephistopheles!”

      1. Better how? From an objective policy standpoint, yeah, but from an election/draw in an audience and voters standpoint, hell to the naw.

    2. He doesn’t ramble, but he does have a problem with vocalized pauses. It must be a libertarian thing because he came and spoke at my school and both YAL officers who introduced him were terrible speakers as well.

  20. Ron Paul is a flawed candidate, to be sure, but he’s probably the best we’re going to get, since I doubt Gary Johnson will get much traction.

  21. RUN RON RON!!!

  22. Ron Paul is a bad matchup against Obama. The president won’t be able to pigeonhole him as some kind of neocon hawk, so he’ll switch tactics and paint himself as the more “moderate” while attacking Paul as an anarchist.

    Take foreign policy for instance. Obama would anticipate that Paul is a misfit in his own party for his anti war stance, so he’ll back up a bit to play the realist – someone who resists most military conflict but is open to interventions and foreign aid under the right circumstances, with the blessings of the global community.

    Meanwhile he’ll blast Ron Paul as some out of touch isoltionist who opposes any and all military involvement and foreign aid. “Ron Paul forsakes Isreal and the Libyan Rebels” might be a popular debate point.

    If all else fails, Obama will hammer him as a market obedient capitalist who’s against illegal immigration, and the fawning “Oc Weekly” crowd will eventually lose their interest and vote for their chosen masters. It doesn’t help his image that he’s for dismantling the civil rights act and the federal reserve. Good ideas perhaps, but more fodder for people who think you’re an antigovernment nut job.

    1. He’s not for decentralizing the Civil Rights Act. He doesn’t like its second article, but I don’t think he plans to do anything about it.

    2. Maybe so, but Obama will have one big disadvantage that Ron Paul doesn’t — Obama’s record for the past four years.

  23. Okay, compared to his idiot son, he looks, well, like less of an idiot, but who doesn’t? He just has too much baggage of the lunatic variety to be taken seriously outside libertoid and Birch Society circles. Sorry.

    1. Thank God you’re here, Max! We were all on tenterhooks just waiting for your words of wisdom!

      Now where’s Anonbot for some more insightful commentary?

      1. Gently stroking Max’s micropenis-afflicted genitalia.

      2. I offer good floors cheap you no want. What you need now?

        1. Get the fuck out.

  24. Ron Paul knows he’s not going to get the nomination, but he’s going to get lots of money from suckers and dimwits.

    1. As opposed to those shrewd souls who gave Giuliani 50 million in 2007.

  25. I can never tell if you guys really support Ron Paul or are just being ironic. I agree with so many of your policy positions but if you’re serious about supporting Ron Paul fo the presidency then I’m obviously in the wrong place.

    1. I’m serious about supporting Ron Paul. But I’m one of these guys, so guess that doesn’t really answer your question.

      1. I’m not one of these guys.

    2. You have a better candidate?

      Gary Johnson is more of an actual libertarian, and has a better record than Pawlenty or any of the other former governors potentially entering the race, but he was clearly standing in Ron Paul’s shadow at the first debate.

      1. Ron Paul didn’t even cast a shadow in the first debate. None of them did.

    3. Well, he’s no Donald Trump, I grant you, but we’ll take what we can get.

      1. I wonder if the other Republican hopefuls ever heard of those racist newsletters the old fuck published. Nah, I’m sure they’ll never come up. And he’s soooo charismatic! He will gobble up the youth vote. I’ll bet Obama is shaking in his boots at the propect of running aginst Ron Paul.

        1. I don’t think Obama is concerned about any potential Republican competitor (I wouldn’t be if I was him, even if I hadn’t just brought back the head of Osama bin Laden for the presidential trophy wall), so unless the President gets caught fucking an underage male intern who turned out to be a ChiCom spy moonlighting for Al Qaeda, it doesn’t really matter one way or the other.

          Besides, I would imagine nearly every Republican candidate has said or done or been linked to something that could be turned into a race issue, though not of all of them were stupid enough to immortalize it on paper. Romney might not have, but his religion has some serious racial issues in its not-too-distant past.

          1. Couldn’t put it better myself, Cynical. What’s a sane guy like you doing here?

            1. I honestly don’t understand you, Max. Let’s put the shit and the antagonism aside for a moment. WHY do you come here? If you hate it so much, nobody’s forcing you to be here. Is this what Keynesian parents do to their children as punishment when they catch them masturbating over photographs of Thai transsexuals, or something? Did they also make you stare at a picture of an Evil Murderous Hell-spawned Firearm Gun Assault Clip Pistol Assault Destroyer Street Sweeper .22 Caliber (trademarked)? What the fuck’s the matter with you?

              And what’s your actual political position? Are you a liberal? A neo-conservative? What?

  26. Lupak,

    I enjoy observing the idiocy that a consistent, principled ideology can lead to. I like to make fun of it.

  27. Lupak,

    I enjoy observing the idiocy that a consistent, principled ideology can lead to. I like to make fun of it.

  28. Lupak,

    I enjoy observing the idiocy that a consistent, principled ideology can lead to. I like to make fun of it.

  29. Oops, I’m not sure how that happened. I actually agree with a lot of libertarian positions on social issues and drugs. Some of the Reason staff are very good writers. Hit and Run is offers a pretty low level of debate, but I get a kick out of it. I hope that answers you question. Now go suck Ron Paul’s cock.

    1. I don’t actually worship Ron Paul, and I’m not a quasi-anarchist like a lot of these guys seem to be. I’m a rabid constitutionalist, though, and I’m pretty sure you’ll hate me as much as you hate these libertarians here.

  30. What makes you think I give a flying fuck about you one way or the other?

    1. You told me to go suck Paul’s cock, so I clarified the reason I wouldn’t do that. Not sure why you’re so hostile, but okay, you don’t give a fuck. No problem.

      1. So you’re Lupak then?

        1. By the way, I’m mostly just kidding.

  31. If you support Ron Paul you might be called anti-Semitic. Watch how Ron Paul handled that insult from the vile Ben Stein. See the YouTube video. NEVER back down, NEVER deny, ALWAYS attack the vile person who uses that smear. Demand and apology and disrupt the conversation until you get one.

    1. I wonder what would happen if Paul debated Obama.

      1. Obama would destroy Ron Paul. It’s a question of a law professor’s debating skills vs those of a physician. Ron Paul is a physician and a boring old fuck who’s accustomed to preaching to the coverted. No match.

        1. Fuck! Cocksucker! Fucking cocksuckers! Somalia! Fuck! Fuck! Fuck!

  32. Here’s one for ya’ll to have fun with.

    http://crookedtimber.org/2011/…..ights-act/

    Snippet:

    But it would be good if libertarians ? tea party types generally ? had more of an uphill slog, due to the fact that the liberty they want to guarantee is not quite the liberty Americans tend to assume should be guaranteed.

  33. Ron Paul is a garden variety racist wrapped up in dogma..I look forward to him being trashed in various media forums and venues..

    1. “If you have ever been robbed by black teenaged male, you know how incredibly fleet of foot they can be.”
      –Ron Paul

    2. All that liberty stuff he’s been involved in for the last 40 years is just an elaborate smokescreen to hide his real motivation: racism.

      That seems likely. Thanks for the canny analysis, Greg.

      1. Somehow you have to explain the quote from his own fucking newsletter, Greg, so stick you canny analysis sarcasm up you ass.

        1. what do you think is more racist, max? that quote from his newsletter from god knows how long ago, or a drug policy that disproportionately punishes minorities? a social safety net that makes proportionately more minority people turn their efforts from finding real work to mismanaging government handouts? a “race quota,” which explicitly rewards people based on the color of their skin and not by their merit? a foreign policy based entirely on converting other races of people into our mold with guns in our hands? you are taking one sentence completely out of the context of the larger picture. perhaps if we followed ron paul’s views on government, african americans would not be forced into crime.
          and suck my balls.

          1. If you think you can force African Americans to suck your balls, you’re delusional.
            I don’t think assholes who write and think things like that will get many votes outside libertarian and nazi circles.

            1. there’s so much shit trying to come out of your mouth at once it’s backed up and is poisoning your brain. you do not understand the causal relationship between the very real problems we face and the policies that exaggerate them.

  34. …Greg, so stick you canny analysis sarcasm up you[‘re] ass….. Max

    Max, if you’re running for the office of troll, you sure got my vote.

  35. I meant Bradley.

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  38. “As someone and commented widely and generally sympathetically about Ron Paul, I’ve got to say that The New Republic article detailing tons of racist and homophobic comments from Paul newsletters is really stunning. As former reason intern Dan Koffler documents here, there is no shortage of truly odious material that is simply jaw-dropping.
    I don’t think that Ron Paul wrote this stuff but that really doesn’t matter–the newsletters carried his name after all–and his non-response to Dave Weigel below is unsatisfying on about a thousand different levels. It is hugely disappointing that he produced a cache of such garbage.”–Nick Gillespie

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