Ron Paul

Welcome to Ron Paul's Revolution, The Website


My new book, Ron Paul's Revolution: The Man and the Movement He Inspired, published by Broadside Books (a HarperCollins imprint) will be officially released next week.

The book is the culmination of 24 years of following Ron Paul's career. I first met him in January 1988, when he spoke at an event organized by a group I was part of, the University of Florida College Libertarians. Paul was then running for president as the candidate of the Libertarian Party.   

Ron Paul's rEVOLution: The Man and the Movement He Inspired

He drew 100 or so people, mostly there to witness a political curiosity, not yet dedicated fans. We got him a good write-up in the school paper, the Independent Florida Alligator. It was exciting that, through the vehicle of someone running for president, we got our then-utterly-ignored libertarian ideas widely read about in the paper.

It seemed nearly like a dream to me, 24 years later, at another big state school, UCLA, to see a Paul speaking appearance drawing an overflow crowd of 7,000, filling a stadium, taking to the trees, cheering liberty and booing the National Defense Authorization Act. These thousands were not just there to learn about strange ideas, but to cheer on a champion of what they already knew and believed–and to hang out afterward plotting and planning their multileveled attempts, from campus activism to online agitation to running for office, to further the cause of liberty that Ron Paul represents.

Paul was when I met him in 1988 a former Republican congressman, and in 1996 he once again ran for, and won, a federal congressional seat from Texas. This launched a long career for him as a outlying congressional gadfly. I first wrote about him as such in a national magazine in a 1999 profile for the American Spectator.

Ever since I've kept my eye on him as a journalist covering the libertarian movement, and a sympathetic admirer of his libertarian stances and goals. I interviewed him for and wrote about him in my 2007 book Radicals for Capitalism: A Freewheeling History of the Modern American Libertarian Movement

I was among the first national journalists to cover his burgeoning presidential campaign in January 2007, and have written about him extensively here at Reason magazine and Reason Online ever since, including cover stories on his 2008 ("Scenes from the Ron Paul Revolution") and 2012 ("The Ron Paul Moment") campaigns.

From January 2007 on, I have been amazed, as a longtime watcher of the libertarian movement, to see how Paul was creating and energizing a mass movement of active, intelligent, dedicated, giving, organized devotees for liberty, young and old, most of whom had never thought of themselves as libertarians before. I watched as his career-long call to audit and curb the Federal Reserve became a mass movement.

I thought back in 2008 that it was time for a book telling the full story of the man, his ideas, and the movement he inspired. By 2011, it had become obvious that Paul and his people were no flash in the pan. His son Rand Paul had been elected U.S. Senator from Kentucky in 2010 as a Tea Party standardbearer. Despite his electoral failure in 2008, the Paul Revolution rose again, more energetic than before, to push Paul's campaign to the point where now he is the last opposition standing to current frontrunner Mitt Romney. He's now actually racking up control of state delegations and parties. The time to write a book introducing and explaining this phenomenon to the non-libertarian world was clearly here.

To read the rest, please visit the new dedicated web site for Ron Paul's Revolution: The Man and the Movement He Inspired, where you can follow both my ongoing reporting, writing, and talking on the still-very-alive story of Ron Paul, as well as follow news about events and media relating specifically to the book itself.

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  1. Crap, I didn’t realize we overlapped. I graduated in 1988. I knew some LPers then. Sean Landon?

    1. Sometimes I forget how ancient you are. I barely overlap with your time in college at all.

      1. Actually, probably not at all, unless you graduated after the fall term.

          1. So yeah, you were already done before I was born.

            1. I went to college in the Before Time.

              1. Bravo.

      2. ProL’s not ancient, he’s archaic. There’s a difference.

        1. Anachronism is the word you’re looking for.

          1. You probably want to send guys to the moon. And you’d do it using a sliderule, wouldn’t you?

            1. No math, just geometry. Using Roman numerals.

        2. He’s from the school they tore down to build the old school. I respect that.

          1. All the buildings at UF are intact, I think, but they have added a lot more. When I was there, they did have at least two buildings without A/C. Really great for summer sessions, as Gainesville gets insanely hot during the summer.

            1. Poor old guy didn’t even get it.

              1. Oh, I got it, all right. I just ignored it.

                1. Whatever you say, grandpa.

                  1. Yes, exactly how many years apart are we?

                    1. I can’t hear you over the sound of my youth, ProL.

                    2. Keep on clinging, old man. That’s what we aged do.

                    3. What buildings didn’t have A/C? Because if it wasn’t the dorms, I don’t want to hear about it.

                      They still didn’t have A/C in the poor kids’ dorm in freaking Lubbock, TX in 2000 when I was in college. I drank a six-pack of Mt. Dew a day to keep cool in that bitch.

                    4. I was in one of the nicer dorms (just my freshman year–moved off campus after that), so I don’t know. I don’t think any of them lacked A/C.

                    5. I had to stay in the only dorm that lacked it, because even though the rooms were slightly larger, they only cost half as much (for obvious reasons).

                      Still, I imagine the humidity in Florida would be far worse than the straight heat of Texas.

                    6. Gainesville is worse than here, because there’s no nice sea breeze to cool things down (relatively speaking). Humid as hell, and hot.

      3. Sometimes I forget how ancient you are. I barely overlap with your time in college at all.

        88 was Pro L’s graduation from kindergarten. They have those now.

        1. I was already committing legal malpractice in 1988.

          1. I was already committing legal malpractice in 1988.

            And I was screwing up your computers in ’88. With an 8″ floppy.

            1. You’re making that up. We were using 3 1/2s by then at school.

              1. Nope. The System 36 was still a viable platform in all fine government offices in 1988. They were, admittedly old by that time, but they were still being used.

                1. Stone knives and bearskins.

                  My first computer (that I owned) was an IBM AT. I think–I can’t even remember for sure the exact model. Anyway, it had 640K RAM and came with two 5 1/4 slots. Dad had a 10 MB hard drive from the scrap pile at work he gave me, which I used in place of one of those floppies. Power!

                  1. Dad had a 10 MB hard drive from the scrap pile at work he gave me, which I used in place of one of those floppies. Power!

                    I’m dusting off the memory cells, and I’m remembering my computer in 1988, a Commodore Amiga had a 3.5″ floppy. I was mostly remembering the computers I worked on professionally which were all IBM clones and what not, so they all had 5.25″. Traditionally, my home computer was usually more cutting edge than what was used in business. Funny that.

                    1. In high school, I sold Kaypro computers (the old “luggables”). I couldn’t afford one, as they ran between $1,500 – $2,000. The PCs and the clones killed them, as they were CP/M machines.

              2. Actually, they weren’t that old.

                “The IBM System/36 (often abbreviated as S/36) was a minicomputer marketed by IBM from 1983 to 2000.”

                So in 1988 when I started using the one when I worked for Lockheed, was probably only a few years old.

                Oh, and if you were using 3.5″ floppies in ’88, you were on the cutting edge. Even though 3.5″ floppies were officially outselling 5.25″ in 1988, there were a lot of 5.25″ still in use up through the early 90s.

                1. See above about what I owned.

                  The 3 1/2 were for the PS/2s we had access to in the Business school. In my first couple of years there, we weren’t using PCs. When I took Fortran, I had to wait in the queue for time on the VAX system. Mmmm, mainframes.

                  1. When I took Fortran, I had to wait in the queue for time on the VAX system. Mmmm, mainframes.

                    DEC Vax VMS II. That was my first ‘enterprise class’ computer system I worked on professionally– I never counted the S/36 much because I didn’t spend much time on it or learn much of its arcane ways. I mean, 8″ floppy? Srsly?

                    DEC hardware was considered cutting edge. I remember loving the stuff.

                    1. I can hear the XYZZY in my head, even now.

                    2. Wait, your first computer was an AT? WTF? I had a Commodore VIC*20, with like 4KB of RAM. And I know I’m younger than you, gramps.

                    3. I looked it up–it was an IBM XT. It was dated by the time I got it, I bought it from some company that was getting something else. $100.

              3. I was in grade school in 88. We played Oregon Trail on the Apple II with 5.25″s

                1. The Apple cult began in grade school. Like Scientology, but with more gadgets.

            2. Children.

              My work-study in college was hanging tapes and changing paper for the CDC 6609’s at the Air Force Weapons Lab. My desk during that assignment was a CDC 160.

              I took the first computer science elective that APS offered in 1970 where we ran our FORTRAN IV programs on the IBM 360 at UNM.

              The first desktop computer that I saw was a WANG that had individual modules connected with cables.

              Still have a fondness for the old mainframes.

              … Hobbit

    2. Sean and I were very good friends. He converted me to vegetarianism for a while.

      1. He converted me to vegetarianism for a while.

        Sounds more like an enemy.

        1. Nah, he was a very nice guy. I was too much of an alcoholic at the time to convert to much of anything.

          I was a libertarian even then–had been since around middle school age, probably.

      2. No kidding? We were pretty good friends, too, though I’ve only exchanged e-mails with him maybe a couple of times since then. Last time I saw him was at my graduation party, I think. He was hardcore, even back then–I remember him telling me that libraries had no business being publicly funded.

        I think he took Mandarin when I took Japanese–was right about that, too. Maybe.

        1. I too have not been in active contact for a couple of decades. I do believe he was actually using the Mandarin professionally.

          1. I ran across his name in some libertarian something or other a few years ago and contacted him. When we were exchanging e-mails, I think we was living in South Florida.

            1. Not we, he. I’d never live in South Florida.

              1. I thought you were Mr. South Florida?

                1. Uh oh, Paul, now you’ve done it.

                  1. Episiarch is correct for once. You are in error. Tampa is in Central Florida, despite the odd name of the state university here. I’m only maybe 2 1/2 hours from the northern border.

      3. Sean and I were very good friends. He converted me to vegetarianism for a while.

        Then he’s not that good a friend.

        And I notice “for a while”. Common theme amongst the veggies. They always go back.

        1. I was fully off land beasts for about a year, then started eating birds. Went about 6 years eating no mammals. Now a fallen soul

          1. Or a hero in fending off the mammalian menace.

  2. What’s your opinion on copyright, Mr Doherty?

    1. I own a few. For all the good it does me.

    2. Did someone copyright all the alt-text?

  3. My new book, Ron Paul’s Revolution: The Man and the Movement He Inspired, published by Broadside Books (a HarperCollins imprint) will be officially released next week.

    You know who else wrote a book?

    1. Obama. And he flat out says that he’ll do mean things to the Jews and invade Russia.

      Wait, is that right?

  4. Very cool, but comments aren’t working on the new site.

    1. You are right. I have asked people with the ability to maybe do something about that to do something about that.

  5. They’re waiting for Max and Lefiti to register.

  6. So let me make sure I’ve got this straight…

    Brian Doherty has a book coming out about RP?

  7. Hey, did anyone hear about Brian Doherty’s new book?

  8. You know what I heard?

    Brian Doherty is releasing a book next week and it’s about Ron Paul.

  9. Anyone planning on reading BRIAN DOHERTY’S NEW BOOK?



    1. Brian’s one of the few editors on this site that would pass most libertarian purity tests.

      1. It’s unlibertarian to pass a purity test. Libertarianism is a suicide pact. We won’t even join ourselves.

    2. It looks cool. It spells “love” backwards as part of “revolution”. That kind of graphic designing doesn’t come cheap.

  12. Spread the word, Francisco…

    1. Do I get a free copy?

  13. Pardon me, good sirs, but I just happened to stop in here on my way to the Monocle, Tophat, and Palanquin Emporium, and was curious if any of you could recommend to me some good reading as I while away my time being carried from one of my vast palaces to the other? Have to make the rounds and ensure the stewards aren’t cheating me, you see, but the journey between mansions is dreadfully tedious, and I simply refuse to debase myself by utilizing one of these “motorized carriages” the proles do so love to go on about.

  14. Oh, there is a Kindle edition? I thought some commenter said otherwise.

    1. Some commenter said otherwise for reasons unclear to me. There will be a Kindle, I guess available as soon as release is “official” which should be Tuesday.

      1. Excellent. Do you get the same royalty?

        1. Do you get the same royalty?

          Aside from the occasional Prince or Duke, probably not much.

          1. I’m actually wondering if Amazon screws the publisher (and the author) for digital sales.

            1. I don’t see how they could, since the Kindle edition is sometimes more expensive than a physical copy now.

              1. Publishing is an arcane and obscure world, where the only real truth is that authors get screwed.


        1. Why would we need a book about this self-promoting, over-exposed megalomaniac?


  15. Calling a dedicated website is like saying Reason did not cover food politics till 2011. Er maybe not. One is debatable(dedicated website) the other is flat out incorrect.

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