Ron Paul

Politico: "Ron Paul won the debate"

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Hot vs cool media: Hard-edged Rick Perry thundering at mild-mannered Ron Paul.

Politico's Ben Smith says Texas Gov. Rick Perry's showdown with Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) at this week's presidential debate shows that the Paul campaign has mastered retail politics. He credits lessons learned during the successful Senate run of Paul's son Rand Paul last year: 

[Paul campaign chairman Jesse] Benton took two key lessons from 2010: First, that the candidate should spend more time talking about practical issues than libertarian philosophy.

"We've learned that people are looking for a utilitarian answer – not everybody is going to have the same core beliefs about the role of government or what we should be doing for a society, but I think they look and see what works and what doesn't," he said. (Paul has clearly made an effort to focus on central Republican policy questions—he opened his speech in Ames with a long discussion of abortion—though the new campaign hasn't exactly silenced his more esoteric concerns, like the lost glory of silver dimes.)

The second lesson is that the longtime outsiders could use traditional Republican methods, tactics, and even consultants.

The 2010 campaign offered insiders, like Benton, a trial by fire. And the campaign also has a new layer of professional Republican operatives in the campaign's inner circle. Trygve Olsen, a veteran GOP operative who worked for Rand Paul after he secured the GOP nomination, is now a key Paul adviser, as is Virginia GOP hand Mike Rothfeld, Benton said. And adman Jon Downs, a mainstream GOP consultant, made the spot portraying Perry as "Al Gore's Texas cheerleader," prompting Perry to break a basic rule of politics and punch down. 

1. Being attacked is clearly preferable to being ignored, which was Paul's predicament just a few weeks ago. But it's a little early to declare a sea change. In 2008 Paul was attacked by The New Republic and a wannabe toughguy Republican. This year he's attacked by The New Republic and a wannabe toughguy Republican

2. There's a potential downside to peddling "utilitarian answers" in a political campaign when your entire message is that government can't provide utilitarian answers. There's a decent case to be made that ending both domestic and foreign intervention by the U.S. government would leave us with a more peaceful and prosperous country. But we should scale back the overweening state because it is the right thing to do, not because it will lead to a particular outcome. 

3. Do we really want a Ron Paul who doesn't bore audiences with libertarian philosophy? That Ben Bernanke, glum chin mounted on glummer fist, must occasionally sit through lengthy Ron Paul disquisitions on libertarian philosophy is one of the few reasons we have to believe that earthly justice is possible.

4. All that having been said, Paul obviously won the debate just by daring to admit that the Reagan era was not as goddamn great as everybody pretends.

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  1. 4. All that having been said, Paul obviously won the debate just by daring to admit that the Reagan era was not as goddamn great as everybody pretends.

    That might get him some lefty votes in a general election but probably slaughters him in a primary.

    1. It was my impression that Paul cannot and will not win. No?

      1. Yes it is No.

        (But being unelectable doesn’t make him wrong.)

      2. Seems like an unjust assumption that Ron Paul cannot win given that he’s ranking 3rd in the MSM polls and gets huge donations from grassroots…$1.8 MILLION on his BIRTHDAY?!

    2. I don’t know about that.

      Both Bachmann (with the 3:1 tax bit) and Gingrich (with the amnesty bit) also made similar such arguments about Reagan having “good” intentions but making mistakes.

  2. That Ben Bernanke, glum chin mounted on glummer fist, must occasionally sit through lengthy Ron Paul disquisitions on libertarian philosophy is one of the few reasons we have to believe that earthly justice is possible.

    That’s (C-SPAN) entertainment!

  3. But Monica Crowley and Kimberly Guilfoyle told me that he DIDN’T win the debate glorified interview!

    I so confuse…

    1. Kimberly Guilfoyle

      I’d do her.

      1. She has a scary mouth.

        1. Are you kidding? Every time I see that mouth, I picture my d*ck inside of it.

    2. But Monica Crowley …told me that [Paul] DIDN’T win…

      Miiiss Crowley, what went on in your head?
      Oh, Miss Crowley, are you saying Paul’s dead?
      Your reporting to me seems so tragic
      With the shilling and all
      Fooling people with editing magic
      You waited on Obama’s call

      1. No props for that yet? sheesh.

        +1

      2. Ozzy would be proud…but still expect royalties. 🙂

  4. curious how reagan achieved mythical status amongst wingnutz. a former dem & union leader fm left-coast hollywood who astrologized

    1. That’s just fascinating.

    2. … and supported open borders.

  5. Ron Paul totally sold out to win, man.

  6. And adman Jon Downs, a mainstream GOP consultant, made the spot portraying Perry as “Al Gore’s Texas cheerleader,”. . .

    Paul’s campaign has fielded three outstanding political ads so far this year. What a truly shocking change from 2008.

  7. [W]e should scale back the overweening state because it is the right thing to do, not because it will lead to a particular outcome.

    Right thing to do meaning what, then?

    1. Meaning that the only way to respect each individual’s rights is to leave them the hell alone.

      1. I think this is one of those rare instances were we could have our cake and eat it too.

      2. Maximizing individual agency seems like an outcome to me.

        But that can’t be what it’s about, because a) it’s not about outcomes and b) there’s no reason to believe scaling back government will achieve this outcome.

        Small government as a means to no end other than small government.

        Hmm, cui bono?

        1. without small government the stock market will crash, therefore it is an end to us making profit.

        2. As opposed to big government as a means to no end other than big government.

          1. You’d like to think that so it’s easier to swallow the blind dogmatism that informs small-governmentism, but it’s just not true and totally nonsensical. Maximizing human well-being is the unapologetic goal of utilitarianism.

            1. I’ll translate the above for Tony-impaired people:

              Blind dogmatism in favor of big government is, in and of itself, its own reward.

              1. It’s a pity you can’t see beyond your black-and-white conception of the world, but I don’t see why I should be similarly impaired just to make you feel better.

                1. “It’s a pity you can’t see beyond your black-and-white conception of the world,”

                  Mirror. Look in it.

                  “Maximizing human well-being is the unapologetic goal of utilitarianism.”

                  And its done a hell of a job … if it wasn’t for the Tea Partiez!

            2. Strawman followed by an unsubstantiated statement.

              Even when you’re more elaborate, Tony, your rhetoric never matures beyond the above.

            3. “Maximizing human well-being is the unapologetic goal of utilitarianism”

              Tony, the problem is always WHO judges what is in a person’s well-being? Libertarians think the individual knows best, you think some bureaucrats do.

            4. You’ve just proven you haven’t a fucking clue what utilitarianism is about or even means, Tony.

        3. “there’s no reason to believe scaling back government will achieve this outcome.”

          Sure there is, the same way that there’s reason to believe that expansion of government is damaging to such a goal.

          1. All else being equal, a welfare check in someone’s hands increases his agency, does it not?

            1. A welfare check in someone’s hands decreases the agency of everyone forced to pay for it. A state of absolutely unrealistic omnipotence is the only true case of absolute individual agency, and the paradox comes when trying to envision multiple omnipotent parties who wish to go against one another’s will. As we’re forced to deal with reality, the goal becomes establishing individual sovereignty with regard to one’s own property, but restricting their agency when it comes to another’s property against that owner’s will.

              The issue of concern with regard to your question is that of determining rightful ownership.

              1. A welfare check in someone’s hands decreases the agency of everyone forced to pay for it.

                True, but then it becomes a matter of degree. A tax can decrease agency by a trivial amount, but the service paid for could increase it meaningfully for the recipients of the service. In terms of human liberty alone, the trade-off is clear.

                So you have to assert “rightful ownership” as a moral proposition to counter this mathematical reality as it applies to human liberty. You have to decrease human liberty in order to maintain these moral first principles, such as “He rightfully owns whatever he has his hands on at this particular moment.” But of course what “rightfully” belongs in whose hands is the entire question.

                Maybe what’s right is what maximizes human liberty. That is the claim here, only it’s flawed, because it assumes that human liberty and government authority are in a zero-sum relationship, and we’ve both clearly demonstrated that this is not so.

                You simply value the almost nonexistent increase in agency afforded by a pittance in untaxed wealth rather than the meaningful liberty afforded by a service a tax could pay for.

                1. My God, what a load of bullshit-flavored gobbledygook.

                  1. Your inability to comprehend a simple summation is a sign your stupidity and nothing else.

                2. Perhaps your definition of liberty is different from mine.

                  1. My definition is “the ability to act unimpeded.” What’s yours?

                3. “True, but then it becomes a matter of degree. A tax can decrease agency by a trivial amount, but the service paid for could increase it meaningfully for the recipients of the service. In terms of human liberty alone, the trade-off is clear.”

                  Absurd argumentation based on arbitrary sentiment. Your applications of the word “trivial” and “meaningfully” show a sort of arrogance so extreme that it causes you to believe you have a greater claim to someone else’s property than they, themselves, do.

                  Anyways, a fine application of your logic is an argument in favor of slavery. Assuming the slaves are a minority group (as is always the case), the collective decrease in agency is a trivial, but the service that slavery brings to the rest of society is so meaningful that, in terms of human liberty, the trade-off is clear.

                  Your logic does not favor “individual agency” but, rather, the agency of an empowered group and nothing more. What would maximize my own liberty in our social circumstances is to have everyone else be forced carry out my will. What would maximize the liberty of any particular group in our social circumstances is to have everyone else outside of that group be forced to carry out that group’s will. So, certainly, government, being nothing more than an entity that uses violence and coercion to enforce codes of behavior, can be used to increase the liberty of a particular group.

                  But the discussion began on the subject of “individual agency”, and you’ve already proved the initial statement I made while managing to immolate your own.

                  1. Enslaving someone clearly does not decrease their freedom by a trivial amount.

                    However, taxation (at reasonable rates) does affect freedom only trivially, with a potential huge gain in freedom via the services taxation pays for.

                    When you say you’re for individual freedom, with no redistribution of resources what that amounts to in reality is meaningful freedom for a tiny elite, and a meaningful lack of freedom for everyone else.

                    All this is to say that the relationship between government and individual freedom is not the inverse one you claim. It’s more complex, unless you simply define freedom as the absence of government, in which case your definition of freedom is meaningless.

                    1. “Enslaving someone clearly does not decrease their freedom by a trivial amount.”

                      Collectively, when only a minority is enslaved, the overall increase in liberty for that society is substantial enough to make the minority’s loss trivial.

                      Who are you to argue against my statement of what is trivial and what is substantial? Or is your thinking so poorly defined that you fail to realize your real argument is nothing more than one that states that you, alone, carry the authority to determine what people are and are not entitled to based on how you feel.

                      “However, taxation (at reasonable rates) does affect freedom only trivially, with a potential huge gain in freedom via the services taxation pays for.”

                      Again with the arbitrary and entirely subjective form of reasoning.

                      “When you say you’re for individual freedom, with no redistribution of resources what that amounts to in reality is meaningful freedom for a tiny elite, and a meaningful lack of freedom for everyone else.”

                      Incorrect. What that amounts to is a society based upon voluntary transaction where each person’s rights are equivalent to those around them, and the laws that govern that society are based on objective principles.

                      A fundamental problem in your thinking is that you necessarily require subjective and arbitrary judgement to uphold the law. Someone has to determine what is “trivial”, what is “meaningful”, what constitutes “need”, etc. A political ideology, however, based upon objective principles that give equal rights to every individual does not require an emotional arbiter to sustain itself. It is based entirely upon the objective circumstance of voluntary interaction (once rightful ownership is established, and that is an entire and lengthy separate discussion) rather than on an empowered elite arbitrarily determining who is entitled to what and how much one may take from another. Your entire ideology gives essentially unlimited legal authority to an elite and privileged ruling group.

                    2. You’re right that “trivial” and “meaningful” are not clearly defined. But your definitions are no less arbitrary than mine. After all, you want to sneak in the idea that a tax can be a bigger impingement on freedom than starvation!

                      But you don’t really believe that; you’re trying to reconcile two irreconcilable things: your belief in individual liberty, and your moral supposition that ‘whatever someone has his hands on at this moment is his property and cannot be redistributed, even to increase freedom.’

                      My utilitarian claim does not lead to enslaving a minority for the “greater good” since my baseline is the same as yours: individual freedom. Slavery is the worst possible infringement upon that, so therefore unacceptable. The individual is at the heart of my system, but as anyone who’s ever interacted with other people knows, some small amount of liberty must be given up in order to attain a more meaningful form of liberty. You lose your liberty to cross an intersection whenever you please, but gain the liberty associated with not dying in a chaotic mess of cars. These comparisons don’t need to have specific numerical values, as long as what is sacrificed leads to a net gain.

                      The fact is your ideology gives maximal power to an elite and privileged ruling group, and the people being ruled don’t even get a vote in the matter. You think you’re exempt from the realities of power in a capitalist economy because those power relationships evolve out of capitalism rather than being imposed in law? Law is the only thing keeping powers that emerge in nature in check.

                    3. “You’re right that “trivial” and “meaningful” are not clearly defined. But your definitions are no less arbitrary than mine. After all, you want to sneak in the idea that a tax can be a bigger impingement on freedom than starvation!”

                      Incorrect. Not only is your own thinking so imprecisely defined that you’re incapable of understanding, you haven’t taken the time to understand what your own opposition is saying. Saying “I can steal this much from you because it’s trivial” is a necessarily arbitrary judgement. Saying “that which is yours is your entirely, and noone may use what it is yours against your will” is entirely objective. In order to enforce the law for the former, an arbiter of emotion is necessary to determine what “trivial” means. In order to enforce the latter, any objective observer can do the job of finding the person guilty or innocent based upon their objective observation.

                      “But you don’t really believe that; you’re trying to reconcile two irreconcilable things: your belief in individual liberty, and your moral supposition that ‘whatever someone has his hands on at this moment is his property and cannot be redistributed, even to increase freedom.'”

                      Again, a terrible strawman argument which doesn’t even need further addressing.

                      As far as the “increase freedom” statement, as already discussed, you can either increase freedom for the individual, increase freedom for the majority, or increase freedom for an elite ruling group. Your idea that there exists no ownership other than collective ownership is necessarily in favor of “freedom” either for the majority or for an elite ruling group. For the majority, then, you have no ability to condemn anything that majority does in order to increase its own freedom, such as the ownership of slaves. For an elite ruling group, you can no longer even use the utilitarian argument, as you’re only in support of an arbitrary group that maintains its authority, like any ruling group, through violent force.

                      Your ideas necessarily lead to tyrrany in one form or another. There is no other option.

                      “My utilitarian claim does not lead to enslaving a minority for the “greater good” since my baseline is the same as yours: individual freedom. Slavery is the worst possible infringement upon that, so therefore unacceptable. The individual is at the heart of my system, but as anyone who’s ever interacted with other people knows, some small amount of liberty must be given up in order to attain a more meaningful form of liberty. You lose your liberty to cross an intersection whenever you please, but gain the liberty associated with not dying in a chaotic mess of cars. These comparisons don’t need to have specific numerical values, as long as what is sacrificed leads to a net gain.”

                      See the above response. Your utilitarian viewpoint is necessarily damaging to the individual. You either support the individual, the majority, or an elite group. To support anything but individual freedom is to act at its expense.

                      Again, you use nothing more than arbitrary statements of emotion as your form of reasoning, with words like “meaningful” and “trivial”.

                      Regarding slavery, your logic is so poorly defined that you don’t even realize you lack the ability to use your own logic to condemn it. You can say it’s “unacceptable” all you want, but the argument you’re espousing implicity supports such a thing.\

                      “The fact is your ideology gives maximal power to an elite and privileged ruling group, and the people being ruled don’t even get a vote in the matter.”

                      What an odd accusation coming from somebody who believes in using violent force to take someone else’s property from them against their will.

                      Your ENTIRE ideology is based upon disregard for individual will.

                      “You think you’re exempt from the realities of power in a capitalist economy because those power relationships evolve out of capitalism rather than being imposed in law? Law is the only thing keeping powers that emerge in nature in check.”

                      Again, a very poor understanding of reality. A capitalist economy is entirely sustained on individual will — voluntary transactions define capitalism. Both parties of a transaction must agree to it in order for it to be carried out. No business or corporation can exist without providing a good or service that the public agrees to make a trade in order to receive.

                      What separates a government from a corporate entity is that the government is entirely based on force, where individual will is irrelevant to its rule. It sustains itself through the forceful collection of tax dollars and through the use of violence in order to establish itself and enforce its laws. Voluntaryism is irrelevant to its authority or existence.

                      Your distrust of those maintaining corporate power is rational, your absolute and irrational faith in those maintaing government power is foolish. Additionally, and yet again, you fail to recognize the necessary implications of your own thought, thinking that government power somehow necessarily increases individual sovereignty when its existence is for the sake of doing the exact opposite.

                    4. “I can steal this much from you because it’s trivial” is a necessarily arbitrary judgement. Saying “that which is yours is your entirely, and noone may use what it is yours against your will” is entirely objective.

                      The problem is this is begging the question followed by tautology. Taxation isn’t the same as theft. Theft is something defined by law anyway, so there is no such thing as theft without government saying what it is. And it’s not taxation. You may claim that it is illegitimate, but you have to base that not on practical concerns in reality but on an unsubstantiated moral claim that is so impractical that you have to wonder why it’s worth hanging onto.

                      Nobody wants anarchy, so you’d have to impose it on them. So unless you’re comfortable with that, you have to accept taxation as the price you pay for not having to live in anarchy.

                      Don’t all of your conclusions crumble away if you accept that?

                      you can either increase freedom for the individual, increase freedom for the majority, or increase freedom for an elite ruling group.

                      I suppose. I’m talking about individuals. Frankly, more money means more freedom. You clearly believe that, since you think taxing even very wealthy people is among the worst crimes against freedom. So it stands to reason that a lack of money is a lack of substantial freedom. You can’t reconcile your absolute property entitlement with maximal freedom, since there will always be those without resources.

                      A capitalist economy is entirely sustained on individual will — voluntary transactions define capitalism.

                      Say I accept that. What if you have no money? How voluntary is your life? You can claim anyone is able to use his skills to become wealthy, if he so chooses, but it’s a bit pollyanish–and it’s crucial to determine if it’s true. I think there will always be a large wealth gap in a free market, thus a large gap in freedom for humans.

                      What separates a government from a corporate entity is that the government is entirely based on force, where individual will is irrelevant to its rule.

                      Force comes with the territory–it’s the purpose of government to be the repository of legitimate force. Otherwise other powers (even ones emerging in pure capitalism) will take some of that power for themselves. The market may be voluntary but without government it would be like any other power without checks; it would abuse that power. And it does.

                      And people can vote for their government. One man one vote. Not one dollar one vote. I don’t know how much more of a say you think you deserve.

                      You want freedom for a few, I want it for many. That necessarily takes public policy. To claim that every government action ever taken is a decrease in individual freedom is absurd. If you define freedom as anarchy, maybe, but no sane person does.

                    5. “The problem is this is begging the question followed by tautology. Taxation isn’t the same as theft. Theft is something defined by law anyway, so there is no such thing as theft without government saying what it is. And it’s not taxation. You may claim that it is illegitimate, but you have to base that not on practical concerns in reality but on an unsubstantiated moral claim that is so impractical that you have to wonder why it’s worth hanging onto.

                      Nobody wants anarchy, so you’d have to impose it on them. So unless you’re comfortable with that, you have to accept taxation as the price you pay for not having to live in anarchy”

                      Tony, you’re getting desperate to the point of making yourself appear to be pathetic. The above wasn’t even a relevant response to the statement you were responding to.

                      Also, theft is not defined by law, theft is prevented by it. There needs to be no legal organization around for the concept of theft or ownership to exist. They are concepts that are entirely independent of whether or not the law recognizes them or whether or not the law even exists.

                      “Don’t all of your conclusions crumble away if you accept that?”

                      No, they certainly don’t.

                      “Say I accept that. What if you have no money? How voluntary is your life? You can claim anyone is able to use his skills to become wealthy, if he so chooses, but it’s a bit pollyanish–and it’s crucial to determine if it’s true. I think there will always be a large wealth gap in a free market, thus a large gap in freedom for humans.”

                      Tony, I don’t think you’re a moron, but I’m not sure you’ve completely understood what it is I’ve been saying since I appear to have to repeat myself more than I would like to. As stated above, the only true form of absolute liberty lies in omnipotence. Omnipotence, however, is not a realistic concept. There are numerous restrictions imposed by the very nature of the physical universe that will always prevent us from having our will be universal law. Those are the sorts of things that, in spite of our how great our social structure might become, we are without the ability to change. As well, given the fact that we live in a world where a society exists (that is, multiple human beings), to allocate liberty anywhere is to take it from somewhere else. To prevent someone from murdering another is to take away their liberty to murder.
                      Given that we’ve established that omnipotence is a hopeless endeavor and that there are circumstances eternally outside of our control, what CAN we control? The simple answer to that is “weaker groups”. Such is done so by the use of violent force, and from such a thing is born government. Say the strongest group, either by number or resources (or both), establishes a government and their goal is to create a legal system built upon the idea of equal rights for every single individual. The only way to go about such a thing is to allow people to have the same claim over property for the same reasons (e.g. this fort is yours because you built it, and that fort is mine because I built it). Under your system, such a thing is not possible, as you’ve created a tremendous dichotomy in ownership where the only people that maintain ownership over anything are those that belong to whatever elite class happens to be in control of the law. Again, we have to go back to recognition of the arbitrary and emotionally-based nature of your reasoning, where a bureaucrat or collection thereof is necessary to determine what is necessary and what is trivial. When redistributing wealth based upon such an idea, you’ve given one group claim to someone else’s wealth and their own wealth, while removing someone else’s claim to their own wealth and maintaining thier inability to claim ownership over another’s wealth. That is, again, going back to the idea of welfare checks, giving the recipients claim over the wealth of the taxed, while removing the taxed’s claim over their own wealth and maintaing their ability to take wealth from the recipients. You’ve necessarily created an unfair and unequal system of legality. In short, equality, due to the nature of our physical universe which includes multiple human beings and the prospect of omnipotence being impossible, is never something that can be achieved. Legal equality, however, is something that certainly can be achieved, but not under the system that you’re supporting. Your system is one that attempts to achieve equality by imposing inequality — it’s entirely paradoxical.

                      “Force comes with the territory–it’s the purpose of government to be the repository of legitimate force. Otherwise other powers (even ones emerging in pure capitalism) will take some of that power for themselves. The market may be voluntary but without government it would be like any other power without checks; it would abuse that power. And it does.”

                      Throughout the entirety of human history, with numerous tragic examples occurring in the last century, the entity that you have most reason to fear is the government. The government is a monopoly on violent force and, necessarily, is going to the entity that has the most power, that has the least checks and restrictions on its power, and that is the most likely to abuse its power for personal gain at the expense of the ruled.

                      At the very least, the market is at the mercy of the public and other market forces. It is constantly in competition with other organizations, and constantly in need of serving the public in order to sustain itself.

                      “And people can vote for their government. One man one vote. Not one dollar one vote. I don’t know how much more of a say you think you deserve.”

                      Again, so what’s the problem with slavery? There aren’t enough minority votes on the issue to matter.

                      “You want freedom for a few, I want it for many. That necessarily takes public policy. To claim that every government action ever taken is a decrease in individual freedom is absurd. If you define freedom as anarchy, maybe, but no sane person does.”

                      *sigh*

                      Tony, go back and reread everything three more times. This idea of yours has not only been addressed, but thoroughly destroyed. You can either support freedom for the individual or freedom for the group. One or the other. To give power to one is to remove power from the other. All government legislation necessarily removes individual will — that is the REASON why it is legislation and the REASON why it requires violent force in order to uphold (because not all parties will voluntarily agree to abide by the law nor will they agree with the reasoning behind the law). A decrease in individual freedom is not necessarily a bad thing. Again, to take away someone’s ability to murder another human being is to take away individual freedom. To support someone’s ability to murder someone is to take away the victim’s individual freedom. Again, refer to my above statements on the allocation of freedom between groups. The solution is to create a system that upholds individual freedom when it comes to that which belongs to them, which necessarily includes their own life, mind, and body. That is what establishes equality, where you have the freedom to do what you will with what is yours, but not the freedom to do what you will with what is someone else’s.

                    6. “Law is the only thing keeping powers that emerge in nature in check.”

                      And what keeps law in check?

                      Absolutely nothing. See also Josef Stalin, Mao Zedong, Pol Pot and Adolf Hitler. The difference is only in degrees.

                    7. You lose your liberty to cross an intersection whenever you please, but gain the liberty associated with not dying in a chaotic mess of cars.

                      I see. So, what you’re saying is that the only reason that you don’t cross “anytime you want” is because, what: you might get a ticket for jaywalking?

                      Good thing there’s a law then. Otherwise, people like Tony would be would exercise their freedom all willy-nilly turning the streets into a scene from Grand Theft Auto. Because people should never be left to their own devices. That would be too much like, uh…liberty…

                      Tony: I sure hope they have a law where you live requiring that you wipe your ass after you go.

                    8. “Tony: I sure hope they have a law where you live requiring that you wipe your ass after you go.”

                      Ya, that’s pretty much what his stupid ass arguments boil down to. People wouldn’t know what to do with themselves if the elected elite weren’t there to tell them. Jesus.

                    9. “When you say you’re for individual freedom, with no redistribution of resources what that amounts to in reality is meaningful freedom for a tiny elite, and a meaningful lack of freedom for everyone else.”

                      Your economics is faulty. The accumulation of wealth in the hands of a few individuals is assisted by government, and would happen to a much lesser extent in a free environment. What accumulation that did occur would be in direct proportion of one’s productive ability, and every single cent of it would be EARNED. A concept I’m not sure you comprehend.

                    10. By what mechanism does a free market naturally tend toward more economic equality?

                    11. “By what mechanism does a free market naturally tend toward more economic equality?”

                      I said nothing of equality. The market tends towards *justice*, rewarding the most productive. Equality, hard as it may be to believe, considering all the conditioning (not snark intended here, really), is the opposite of justice. People have equal rights, until they loose them. They do not have equal success, and that is justice.

                    12. I would add that “equality” should not be seen as a goal.

                      The problem is that too many think that “equality” is good. It isn’t. We are NOT equal. We have equal rights. Its not the same. We have different abilities, and as such, we will have different outcomes economically. This is NOT bad. And the mistake that is made is to try to use force (thru the law) to overcome nature and somehow MAKE people equal and with equal outcomes.

                4. “Maybe what’s right is what maximizes human liberty.”

                  Supposing that’s what you actually believe, then from now on I’m calling you ContradicTony. Because what you advocate does not increase human liberty. The very mechanism to put in place the theft-machine you envision destoys liberty.

                  1. As some have pointed out here, the whole point of the utilitarian argument to economic freedom is the results it produces for the everyone as a whole, which is far better for that poor person than some short-term wealth redistribution checks. Compare the poor loser in the US working a crappy job to a poor loser in a country with no functioning economy.

                    And if you refuse to accept the mountain of evidence that economic freedom led to the wealth of nations, then there’s really no point in arguing from there. It’s just like arguing with a conspiracy theorist.

                    Go read some Thomas Sowell. He lays out all the counter arguments and has been at since the heyday of the US welfare system.

                5. “… mathematical reality …”

                  I’d sure like to know how this equation can tell us what other humans value. Unless, of course, you think you know what’s best for everyone, and they are all too stupid to know what’s good for them.

                  1. Dude, Tony uses the ‘mathematical’ shit all the time, but he’s mathematically illiterate. He’s been asked repeatedly to provide something, anything, remotely math related to back his assertion; he’s posted nary an equation.

                    He also tries that ‘theft is only theft if the gov defines it as such’ bullshit in every argument. I guess that means there was no theft before it was codified into law. Again, bullshit.

                    At best Tony is a repetitive disingenuous fuck, at worst he’s a sockpuppet created to waste your time. If the latter is true then I would say he was successful in LYG’s case (see above).

                    1. I haven’t seen Tony around before, so it’s certainly possible that my optimism has failed me in his case.

                    2. If Tony didn’t exist, Reason would have to invent him to stoke the fires of discontent.

                    3. “I haven’t seen Tony around before, so it’s certainly possible that my optimism has failed me in his case.”

                      Welcome to Reason.com!

                    4. Thank you, Dr. K. It’s good to be here.

                    5. Glad to have you here.

                    6. Because I’m bored?

            2. How does making someone dependent on the government increase their agency?

      3. And a higher legal regard for individual rights is a “particular outcome” in and of itself.

        1. you’re wrong, Lord. A higher legal regard for individual rights is the only way that we can start oppressing the gays again.

          1. You gays enjoy being oppressed. It’s in your submissive nature.

            1. as long as it’s voluntary, it’s libertarian.

    2. meaning that removing the overweening state is obviously the only way that we can go about stealing social security checks from old ladies to tear up yellowstone to find the gold locked up in the serpentine down there.

  8. 4. All that having been said, Paul obviously won the debate just by daring to admit that the Reagan era was not as goddamn great as everybody pretends.

    It’s true. At least we know he has balls. It would have been better if he made an even bigger deal of it, and just ballsed out and said, look, I know I’m here at the Reagan debate, but — followed by throwdown.

  9. In 2008 Paul was attacked by The New Republic and a wannabe toughguy Republican.

    I thought that second link was going to be to Dondero. I am disappointed.

    1. DONDEERROOOOOOOOO

      Man, he never comes around any more. Like ever.

      1. He autoerotic’d himself to death a while ago, I’m pretty sure. He was dressed up as Sailor Moon or something.

        1. being as I actually know him this shit makes me guffaw…my coworkers thing I am nuts.

          1. !

            You must tell us stories about him. NOW.

            1. I’ve met him a couple of times…he showed up in st. louis 2010 LPCon, desheveled, and wanting access to WAR’s suite so he could shower and get to work for Wayne’s floor campaign. I don’t think WARs floor campaign wanted him there cause he wasnt seen on the floor.

              He is really short too…and loved talking about his petitioning for the LP.

              1. disheveled as in I think he just got out of a car driving to st. louis. The fact he was viewed as more of a liability than asset was mildly amusing, although the LP is hardly the most reasonable determiner of what a political liability is.

              2. His shortness is…DELICIOUS.

                1. I’ve told you this before but I think in that thread (stupid threaded comments) you thought I was referring to GREGOOOOO, whom I do not know…and have no desire to.

                  1. If you know one of the OOOOOOOs, you know all the OOOOOOOs.

                  2. Also, I usually forget anything anyone tell me on here.

                2. His shortness completely fits with the Internet Tuff Gai shit he pulled, though. We should have inferred the shortness, just like with joe (though joe self-confirmed that in a moment of delicious stupidity).

                  1. I’d give DONDEROOO a 5’5″ maybe AT BEST 5’7″

                    1. Is that 5’5″ in heeled dress shoes? DELICIOUS

                  2. I can just picture joe doing that.

                    “Look, this meme that men with short penises can’t satisfy women sexually is just not true. My erection is nearly four inches in length, and my wife tells me all the time that it’s perfectly adequate.”

                    1. Just like joe, dudez. joe is TEAM BLUE Napoleon complex, DONDEROOOO is TEAM RED Napoleon complex. Yin and yang. Peanut butter and jelly. Short belligerent BLUE douche, short belligerent RED douche.

                      I believe joe’s exact words were “5’6″ in work boots”. HA HA HA HA

                    2. If you said that to me in person, Epi, I’d punch you in the face.

                    3. What, that you’re 5’6″ in work boots? How will you hit my face from all the way down there?

                    4. Sometimes I miss joe. Then I think of how viciously and constantly we’d mock him if he was still here, and I really miss him.

                    5. You say that now, but if he came back, you would start to remember that even when we mocked him, he was a completely disingenuous, goalpost-shifting, utterly partisan hack who would absolutely never admit to being wrong no matter what.

                      It was annoying, doubly so because of how tenacious he was and how much time he had to spare.

          2. STORIES K PLZ THX

            1. Also, someone told WAR that since Dondero recruited him he can’t possibly be a Libertarian and WAR said “Look, I had one conversation with the guy, he didnt recruit me.” When WAR backpeddles you know you are a liability.

              1. He claims to have founded the Florida RLC. Or maybe the whole RLC. Always wondered whether there was any truth to that.

            2. Apparently I live in the same small hick town as DONDEROOOOOOOOOOOO.

              Wonder if I’ve ever run into him at the mall or walmart or something.

  10. Being attacked is clearly preferable to being ignored, which was Paul’s predicament just a few weeks ago.

    First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you.

  11. I would think that Politico’s Ben Smith, like most contributors and commenters here, is unqualified to judge the winner of a Republican primary debate.

    1. I think anyone is qualified to judge the winner because:
      1. Political debates aren’t really debates, and
      2. There isn’t really a winner.

      1. Leela: There’s a political debate on. Change the channel.

        Bender: That’s what Fry said when we turned on the debate.

        1. “Your three cent titanium tax goes too far!”
          “Well, your three cent titanium tax doesn’t go too far enough!”

      2. They aren’t debates in the normal sense because their goal isn’t to logically shake out the arguments for an issue and convince the audience. They have a goal though, and it’s to convince primary (in this case) voters to vote for someone. I doubt Ben Smith votes Republican. Even I, who will vote in an open primary later this year, won’t be voting for any of these clowns but Paul. Since my mind is made up, there was nothing in that debate that could have changed my mind. Paul could have done the entire debate with a dildo strapped to his forehead and it would not have altered my decision, so I’m not really qualified to judge the winner. Only people who will use the debate in part to make their decision can be judges here.

        1. To put it yet another way, if you find a mainstream Republican saying something like, “Hey, that Ron Paul guy made a lot of sense up there. I could see voting for him next year,” then I’ll pay attention.

          1. He won the prize for “Most Likely to Enact a Libertarianish Agenda” which translates to winning the debate around here.

        2. I am voting for Paul. But, strapping a dildo to his head for a debate would change my position.

          1. For me, it would have mattered if he went after Bachmann or not.

            1. By that, I mean “go after Bachmann” with the dildo on his head.

              Although given his social conservatism, I really doubt he’d have done that.

        3. “Paul could have done the entire debate with a dildo strapped to his forehead”

          I’m pretty sure you’ll be getting an offer to work for Rand Paul’s 2016 Presidential. It’s those kinds of fresh ideas that will put this country back on top!

        4. I see your point. Actually, the dildo on the forehead would probably make me more enthusiastic for Paul (and I will most likely vote for him).

        5. The whole dildo thing came from watching this short. It wasn’t completely random.

  12. msnbc said Paul received a D- for his debate performance, and they must be right because they’re liberal.

  13. There’s a decent case to be made that ending both domestic and foreign intervention by the U.S. government would leave us with a more peaceful and prosperous country. But we should scale back the overweening state because it is the right thing to do, not because it will lead to a particular outcome.

    So wait, advocating something because it would leave us peaceful and prosperous doesn’t implicitly indicate that it’s right? Are you suggesting there’s a set of circumstances in which peace and prosperity could be wrong?

    1. If we were achieving peace and properity by feeding children into coal furnaces, it’d be wrong.

      Ends, means, justify, blah, blah, blah.

  14. Coming out of the Carter years, I still think Reagan was a great President. Remember the interest rates, gas lines, inflation, malaise? The late 1970s sucked. No, he wasn’t perfect, but he was as good as we could get in 1980.

    1. “Considerably better than the asswipes who preceded him” does not necessarily equal “great”

      1. Imperfect does not mean not great.

        Reagan was far and away the best Prez in my lifetime (Truman-Obama), and better than any I have studied, including Lincoln.

  15. Do we really want a Ron Paul who doesn’t bore audiences with libertarian philosophy?

    I would prefer that Ron Paul engage audiences with interesting remarks on libertarian philosophy … such as his comments on legalizing heroin.

    1. That was an amazing moment. It’s too bad his team apparently didn’t get anything from that and try to think of similar 1 paragraph statements that could possibly get people re-thinking other beliefs.

      He got a conservative republican audience to cheer while discussing heroin legalization. Maybe they should spend some time thinking of other short arguments on other controversial topics? Maybe?

  16. Bravo. Finally I read that the Ronald Reagan era was not what everyboy wants to believe. As a 58 year Californian citizen, I have seen much of Reagan as Governor besides President…and he was not all that.

  17. I love Ron Paul’s warnings like the border fence being used to keep us in. I wish he could have explained a little more because the first thing I thought wasn’t the physical wall (who fucking wants to walk into mexico?), it was more of the federal government as a whole keeping us in. Hell the IRS doesn’t let you financially leave, and with all the information that follows your driver’s license as well as your passport, it’s only a matter of time that other countries that have reciprocal security paranoia may not let you in because of some criminal, civil or medical issue on your record that pops up when they scan your passport. So in a way we will not be allowed to leave if the feds decide to not let us go, even though it may not necessarily be because of the wall on the border.

  18. I won the debate by not watching.

  19. It’s nice just to here some answers outside of the main stream drivel, but it has been decided by the powers that be that he is too crazy and his positions too “out there” to gain either the nomination or win a general election. This is why he has to explain every policy position to the nth degree while the others can just lay out their sound bites unchallenged.

    http://www.libertariansjustlik…..tupid.html

    1. That’s absolutely correct. I’m one of those who thinks he has a few off-the-reservation views, but, when compared to every other candidate out there, left, right (excepting Johnson, of course), indifferent, he’s far and away the best hope we have.

      Even by ordinary Republican standards, he and Johnson should be fighting it out for the nomination. It just goes to show how effed up this country has become that he has to justify his candidacy against this backdrop of corrupt business as usual.

      1. What are ordinary Republican standards? Statism?

        1. Really, I think they’re more confused than the Democrats, who at least know–and lately admit–that they love government. Many rank-and-file Republicans really think their party is for limited government and free markets. I suppose relative to the Democrats and only rhetorically, there’s barely some truth to that. It’s why libertarians like Paul and Johnson are running as Republicans, I guess.

          1. It doesn’t matter what rank-and-file Republicans think; it matters what the people they vote for do. And it’s very telling that even when the people they vote for do the opposite of limited government and free markets, the rank-and-file keep voting for them. Because they’re partisans.

            So fuck them; they don’t believe in limited government or free markets either, or at least not more than in partisanship.

            1. Agreed. However, if they want to pull a Darth Vader and throw the Emperor down, well, whatever conveniently located pit of unending depths happens to be in his office. . you know, what the hell was a giant pit doing in the Emperor’s office on the Son of Death Star?

              1. Those are like, energy transference tubes. Or something.

              2. It was for the Emperor’s amusement. Some rebellion shmoe would be brought into his office, then the Emperor would use his finger tasers on the shmoe, back him up to the edge of the pit, say something witty and evil, and then push him into the pit with one final finger tase.

                1. You know, if I were George Lucas and wanted to, I dunno, redeem myself, I’d remake the first three movies, but strictly from the Emperor’s perspective. I would’ve said Vader’s, but we need some years to forget the prequels, which aren’t canon, anyway.

              3. You just don’t understand Brutalist architecture, ProL.

                1. Okay, that’s a fair criticism. My education in architecture only went up to the Cruel Period.

              4. I think we know from the first Death Star that the empire didn’t have the best engineers in the galaxy.

                1. To be fair, the only real flaw I saw was that exhaust port that could blow up the entire station.

  20. “we should scale back the overweening state because it is the right thing to do, not because it will lead to a particular outcome.”

    If (as its advocates say), the overweening state produces wonderful results simply by imposing reasonable regulations and making the rich pay their fair share, then it would be a good idea.

    Of course, this vision of the overweening state is utterly at odds with reality, but if it were true, then even if it were abstractly wrong, why go into politics to stop it?

  21. Just once I hope that when they have a debate in the Reagan library someone mentions the Iran-Contra affair. Paul came close by attacking the Reagan deficits.

  22. The time has come to give Peace a Chance!
    Support the troops by bringing them home!
    End The Wars! End The FED! End The IRS!
    The Revolution will not be televised (state controlled news), We the People need to take Our Republic Back!! Even if you are not a Republican in the modern sense, Register Republican so you can vote for Dr. Paul in the Primaries! It’s up to US to water the withered Tree of Liberty!! RESTORE AMERICA NOW!! RON PAUL 2012!!!!

    1. I can’t tell if you’re sarcastic or just a really enthusiastic Paulite. Maybe my snarkometer needs tuning.

      1. Too many exclamation points, but not nearly crazy enough to justify all those exclamation points. I agree with Dr. K. You make great points, Kdub, but the exclamation points are a little off-putting.

        1. Oh, I also don’t think ending the IRS is reasonable.

          1. We’ll still probably need an IRS, even in a libertarian state. It would just be significantly smaller than it is today.

  23. It seems the MSM has given up trying to pretend Ron Paul isn’t basically running third. Instead of talking about Bachman or someone as top-tier while ignoring Ron, they have moved on to pretending only Perry and Romney matter. This only months ahead of any actual election. If Perry self-desctructs as Ron Paul predicts, it will be interesting to see the media reaction.

    1. Again, it’s really hard not to believe that this snubbing isn’t intentional. Johnson kept away from the table altogether, and Paul as marginalized as a fairly popular candidate with loads of campaign money can be.

      Nobody wants limited government who has anything to do with our existing–and totally broken–system. The media least of all.

      1. I’m really hoping Johnson can continue to poll above Huntsman. That would give him a shot, since they obviously have to include Huntsman.

      2. The media [wants limited government] least of all.

        Well, consider the fact that a “journalist” can sit on his / her fat ass, receive an email from the 2nd Under Administrative Assistant of the Department of Homeland Conservation about the great threat posed by imported widgets, and, with the change of the byline, they have written a news story. Would you want to give up a scam like that?

        1. Many “journalists” have become the equivalent of tabloid reporters. They breathlessly cover the famous people (ugly in this case, but famous and powerful nonetheless), report on their scandals, rehash their press releases, and basically live as remora on the shark that is the politician.

          Why would they ever want less of that? That’s like a tabloid reporter wanting Hollywood to shrink.

          1. “Journalist.” Sounds like “one who keeps a journal.” You know, like someone who today keeps an on-line log of something. On the web. A logweb or logw for short.

    2. Right, who wouldn’t want to give air time to a guy who says the border fence is going to become America’s Berlin Wall, keeping us from emigrating to Mexico. Or one who talks about special dimes that can buy a gallon of gas. (on the second point, you and I know what he’s talking about…but we’re not the audience)

      It’s not like RP is waxing eloquent and stating his case to the American people in an organized fashion. He acts like a borderline-senile nutjob everytime the camera pans to him.

      1. That’s the kind of crazy America needs right now. The status quo doesn’t seem to appealing to even non-libertarian voters right now. Wait until the government admits were in another recession.

        1. I really doubt we actually left the first. Why do we need the government to tell us that?

          1. That’s when the media will admit it, too. Otherwise, waiting for the government to acknowledge recessions or inflation is foolish. I wonder what the real inflation rate is now, for instance?

    3. You mean like the CNN front page poll?

      Who won the debate? Romney, Perry, or Bachman.

      the MSM ignores Paul SO hard it’s not even funny. How did Bachman even become relevant? She’s nuttier than a fruitcake.

      1. That’s the thing: Bachmann *is* crazy. They want us to think that. It reinforces the idea of the loony Tea Partier. Paul, who may not talk very well but makes sense when you get past the lack of political slickness, does not.

  24. 2. There’s a potential downside to peddling “utilitarian answers” in a political campaign when your entire message is that government can’t provide utilitarian answers. There’s a decent case to be made that ending both domestic and foreign intervention by the U.S. government would leave us with a more peaceful and prosperous country. But we should scale back the overweening state because it is the right thing to do, not because it will lead to a particular outcome.

    This is foolish. Particularly on the economic front. You are completely discounting the facts argued from the very beginning of free market economics, that the free market is THE best economic model and first produces the results which then all other systems then try to imitate.

    And not only that but the prime competing philosophy of liberalism meanwhile has an abysmal record of unintended consequences. So it is doubly foolish to drop the pragmatic arguments and engage purely on their turf of who has the better intentions.

    And what’s worse we now have the left making all kinds of downright Orwellian lies about supposedly-utilitarian results of their policies. Like taxing the rich creates economic growth, unions created the middle class. It’s downright depressing.

  25. There’s a potential downside to peddling “utilitarian answers” in a political campaign when your entire message is that government can’t provide utilitarian answers.

    Getting the fuck out of the way of the private sector isn’t a utilitarian answer?

    There’s a decent case to be made that ending both domestic and foreign intervention by the U.S. government would leave us with a more peaceful and prosperous country. But we should scale back the overweening state because it is the right thing to do, not because it will lead to a particular outcome.

    The problem is that most people in the US don’t think it’s the right thing to do, perhaps because they don’t see govt as overweening. There’s no point arguing with one hand tied behind your back by disavowing consequentialist concerns; and that often leads to namecalling and frictious behavior on the part of libertarians towards those who disagree with them, as we see so often on this here blog.

    1. You have a point, I think. Most people aren’t going to be won over by the purely moral argument for libertarianism. It’s enough for me, but I can see that it is not so for most people.
      THe way I see it, unless you are an anarchist, you have to be a little bit utilitarian. Taxation is theft and government is difficult to justify if you take a strong conception property rights and self ownership to its logical conclusion. The idea that some degree of government is inevitable and/or desirable requires some utilitarian calculation.

    2. There’s no point arguing with one hand tied behind your back

      Pretty much. And if there were ever a forum where nuanced, elaborated answers were inappropriate, it’s these debates. Not only does the 90-second-plus-interruptions format hurt you, but those who are deciding based on the debates are almost by definition just interested in sound bites.

  26. But we should scale back the overweening state because it is the right thing to do, not because it will lead to a particular outcome

    What what whaaaat???

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_3PUu88nOcw

  27. Maximizing human well-being is the unapologetic goal of utilitarianism.

    Of course, being arrogant enough to think you know what’s best for everyone really helps there.

    1. Every political philosophy is guilty of that. For instance, it’s by no means clear that freedom is what’s best for everybody.

      You can’t prove anything relevant to human existence if you don’t assume anything.

  28. Presidential candidate Ron Paul is exactly right concerning the long-term destabilizing consequences of the tragic aftermath to 9/11, and the decades of disastrous foreign policy interventionism in the Middle East which preceded the attacks.

    The illegal and unconstitutional Bush/Obama pre-emptive wars of aggression in the region have not made us safer or enhanced our national security. They have weakened our defense posture and bankrupted our nation. The invasive USA Patriot Act and draconian TSA abuse at the nation’s airports have brought the battle front to the American homeland. But the war is not upon enemies abroad but upon the American people and their rights and liberties.

    Such actions have unforeseen consequences. The CIA calls it “blowback.” Military adventurism and CIA covert actions (such as Operation Ajax, the 1953 Iranian coup d’etat re-installing the Shah whose brutal policies directly led to the 1979 Islamic Revolution and the hostage crisis) have destabilized the region. Our present actions in Iraq have further driven that nation into the hands of these Iranian Shite extremists.

    As Mujahedeen (“Soldiers of God”), Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda were a direct consequence of the CIA’s massive covert intervention in Afghanistan against the Soviets beginning in the late 1970s under the Carter administration, continuing unabated under Reagan through the 1980s. Military adventurism bankrupted and destroyed the Soviet empire. It is doing the same to our American empire.

    Millions of grassroots Americans from all political parties and all walks of life and backgrounds have recognized that twelve term Congressman Ron Paul is the only presidential candidate seriously addressing the crucial linkage between both our unsustainable military presence of 900 overseas bases in 130 countries (and five ongoing undeclared wars), and our unsustainable entitlement system built upon shifting fiscal sand and massive deficit spending.

    This fraudulent welfare-warfare state, enabled by covert monetary manipulation by the Federal Reserve, is bankrupting the American people.

    We have a national debt approaching fifteen trillion dollars, with outstanding future obligations of $104,000,000,000,000,000 in Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Civil Service and Veterans benefits, etc.

    America is a constitutional republic, not an empire.

    We are not the policeman of the world.

    It is time to end the empire, end the wars, and bring the troops home.

    It is time for strategic disengagement and nonintervention in the internal affairs of other nations.

    It is time to restore peace, prosperity, and freedom to America.

    It is time for Ron Paul 2012.

    1. “America is a constitutional republic, not an empire.”

      You know who else was a republic?

      1. Rome before it became a dictatorship and subsequently an empire?

        What’s the implication though?

        1. Britain, too. Well, constitutional monarchy. Look where there empire building got them.

          Though Rome was what I was thinking of first.

  29. I saw a car of youngsters today that had a bumpersticker that said ‘warmonger’ ala the Obama sunrise sticker. That actually gave me ‘hope’.

  30. We need the good doctor to cut away the parasite without killing the host.

    1. Dr. Paul has stated numerous times that he doesn’t perform abortions.

      1. Depends on our definition of parasite. Fetuses are (allegedly) voluntarily undertaken, (usually) don’t kill the host, and *are* limited in term. Governments often aren’t undertaken voluntarily (they’re there when we show up), regularly do kill or make life less worth living, and are UNlimited in term.

        I don’t the the metaphor really goes as far as you think it does.

  31. Do we really want a Ron Paul who doesn’t bore audiences with libertarian philosophy?

    Hell no. He might win if he stopped doing that.

    Do libertarians really want to win a significant election?

    But maybe it’d be okay, because I’m sure RP isn’t a real libertarian.

  32. Bore people with libertarian philosophy ehh??

    I’m more bored with the establisents Plastic men Rick Perry and Mitt Romney.

    The guy who wrote this article clearly is out of touch with working and main stream America.

    The fact he couldn’t resist making a jab about Pauls “a silver dime from the 1960’s can buy a gallon of gas.” comment, which totally registered with a lot of us watching proves the writer is either a moron or just being paid to s**t talk the one brilliant mind on the stage.

    Go f**k yourself politico.

    1. Vick, you overestimate the intelligence of the public. Many thought Paul meant gas was a dime back in the day, and missed his point. He needed to say: “the silver in that dime is now worth $7, and will buy 2 gals of gas, but a dime is still a dime”.

      RP is right, but a poor candidate. Too intellectual.

      “No one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public.”
      H L Mencken.

      1. Even if they did misconstrue, they’re thinking, gas is so expensive now, and maybe this guy can do something about it. Win either way — maybe even better that way.

  33. Politico’s mouth is a pussy.

  34. watch? bully-boy Slick Rick and his poll numbers crash

  35. There’s a potential downside to peddling “utilitarian answers” in a political campaign when your entire message is that government can’t provide utilitarian answers.

    I detect a hint of the Statist Fallacy here, as though arguing that the state can’t provide utilitarian answers means no one can.

    Its really a matter of packaging. To me, the wonderful thing about libertarianism is that you can argue it equally well from a moral perspective or a utilitarian/outcomes perspective. If Paul has glommed on to the notion that first principles/morals is not the way to bring voters in, good for him. He can still argue for the very same policies in a way that might.

    1. Certainly anybody arguing that government intervention in the economy produces bad outcomes is in the fabled catbird seat these days.

      When “utilitarian” is used by the establishment media, however, there’s an expectation of a “solution” that will become effective within a time frame no longer than one congressional election cycle. So abolishing the Fed and eliminating all programs and departments not specifically authorized by Article 2, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution might bring down unemployment* and get the economy “growing” again within 24 months, but quite likely it would not, and it might even coincide with some movements in the opposite direction. It’s still the right thing to do, but it’s not what the hacks mean when they talk about “practical solutions to issues that matter to voters.”

      * Technically it would reduce unemployment to zero, but only because BLS “unemployment” only measures people collecting benefits, and getting rid of federal U.I. funds would effectively wipe out all the bankrupt state unemployment programs. (Again, a mitzvah, but not the kind of thing you brag about while trying to win an election.)

  36. Mohandas Gandhi once said, “First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they attack you, then you win.” Keep it up Dr. Paul, and steel yourself for the next step in your progress toward victory!

  37. Ron Paul – The Only “Third Wave” Presidential Candidate

    Alvin Toffler’s book The Third Wave details how the Second Wave of the Industrial Revolution replaced the societal structures of the First Wave Agricultural Revolution with mass production, standardization and bureaucratic central governments. Mr. Toffler observed that Second Wave structures are now being displaced by a Third Wave, the Information Revolution.

    Because of the amount of information now available to everyone and the rapidity of communication, the Third Wave demands decentralization, individuation and more personal freedom. From the internet to cell phones, today’s society is becoming more Third Wave with Second Wave businesses such as General Motors going through radical changes to meet Third Wave demands in the marketplace.

    And what presidential candidate is calling for a Third Wave form of government? RON PAUL. His platform to reduce the government, balance the budget, and stop policing the world are all Third Wave. Even Dr. Paul’s internet fund raising is Third Wave in nature.

    The Third Wave is a juggernaut and like a sand castle dissolving before a tidal wave, our bureaucratic form of government will change and it will change in the direction that Ron Paul is pointing. You might say it’s the wave of the future!

  38. What you dimwits never ackowledge is that even if Ron Paul won all the fucking debates and got the nomination, he would be quickly sunk in the general election by his shady past of racist newsletters and association with goofy Birchite conspiracy shit.

    1. He’s baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaack!

      And he’s here all week.

  39. Ron Paul lost the debate and will lose any primary BECAUSE HE WANTS TO LOSE!

    He is only in this yearly presidential run as an ego trip and to increase his speaking fee. That’s it!

    If Paul was serious about the R nomination, he’d jettison his nonsensical foreign policy ideas. ‘Cause they ain’t ideas; they’re just wishful thinking.

    Watching Paul in a debate is like watching some guy purposely fail a job interview. “Well, sure I love to work hard and overtime is no problem. Except for Wednesday, those are the days I’m gonna show up drunk….”

  40. wow this is waaaaaayyyy better than 2008 when matt welch was contributing to the rehashed “racist” smear campaign against RP in print and on CNN http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A6rxts0-f9w

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