Rand Paul

Report: Three Pages of Rand Paul's Book Were Plagiarized

Text lifted from Heritage Foundation study


An entire section of Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul's 2013 book Government Bullies was copied wholesale from a 2003 case study by the Heritage Foundation, BuzzFeed has learned. The copied section, 1,318 words, is by far the most significant instance reported so far of Paul borrowing language from other published material.

The new cut-and-paste job follows reports by BuzzFeed, Politico, and MSNBC that Paul had plagiarized speeches either from Wikipedia or news reports. The book was published in August 2013 by Center Street, a division of Hachette Book Group.

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  1. Great.

  2. If so, phooey on Rand. As sleazy as MLK Jr.?

  3. Oh, dear.

    Sevo, shhh. Racist.

    1. Sees ’em, calls ’em.

  4. How can he be that dumb?

    I mean, he has to know that anything he publishes will be scrutinized like nothing else. Did he fall for that myth that the liberals loves libertarians that Reason sometimes tries to push? (Heck, even if he had, it was dumb to plagiarize. But no libertarian could ever get away with it like liberals can).

    Ted Cruz was going to beat him in the primaries anyway.

  5. This is so stupid of Paul. Mentioned above, he had to know he is facing extra scrutiny for being an R and for being a potential prez candidate. Such an avoidable and mistake.

  6. Vice President Biden plagiarized stuff back when he was younger – doesn’t seem to have ended his political career.

  7. Vice President Biden plagiarized stuff back when he was younger – doesn’t seem to have ended his political career.

    1. And then, of course, there are the Hit and Run squirrels who plagiarize commenters at will.

    2. Uh, he’s a Dem; they’re allowed to lie. See Obo, for example.

    3. Actually, this was a big stink years ago, and ended one of his presidential nomination bids.

  8. Straws are being grasped.

    Obama invented girlfriends in his autobiography. Rand’s co-authored book failed to include quotation marks despite including a citation. This is a nothing story–literally a story about an editorial snafu–by the same interests who invented the wikipedia “plagiarism” in which Rand failed to give credit for a plot synopsis of a movie in a verbal speech. Presumably it’s commonplace to stop and say “this is from wikipedia, guys” in the middle of a sentence about a fifteen-year-old film.

    Just a means to plant seeds of doubt re: a politically dangerous character. I’ll commence caring as soon as the rest of the world finds its conscience re: the incident in which Obama ordered the killing of an American child without due process.

    1. And then re-elected him. How could I neglect to mention that? The American public re-elected a president who used drones to kill a 16-year-old American child who was neither accused nor convicted of a crime. Just in case you were confused as to just how pointless and nihilistic the democratic political system is.

      Snuff porn and genocide are terrible things, but the shameless political dance over the monopoly of violence remains the lowest endeavor the human species has ever devised.

      1. I have not yet met a person who knows about that before I inform them. And I happily inform everyone who thinks Obama is the bee’s knees. The problem is the story is so out there, so beyond the pale, that most people assume our president would NOT order an extrajudicial killing.

        I’m sure Obama could drown a tub full of kittens and the progs would simultaneously justify and forget the whole thing.

        1. I’m sure Obama could drown a tub full of kittens and the progs would simultaneously justify and forget the whole thing.

          Not to mention that a year later the press was aghast at Mitt Romney’s 47% comment. Say something unkind to the welfare class and you’re the scandal of the networks. Order the executions of American citizens like some banana republic dictator and you get two or three editorials in the New York Times over a three-year period and a few passing mentions in the leading libertarian publications, read by .01% large.

          There comes a point when you realize that being concerned about political catastrophes is like being concerned about hurricanes. They happen, and there’s nothing anyone can do to prevent them.

        2. the republicans made him kill those kittens.

          1. Yes, they did. He only wants to do good, and when he doesn’t, it’s the fault of the republicans!

    2. I don’t get all the juice over plagiarism charges either. It’s like people still think they’re in 3rd grade, and shouldn’t copy someone else’s homework.

      This is the ultimate of gotcha journalism.

      Here’s an announcement to the universe:
      Any words I state may have been said, and more eloquently said, previously by someone else. My brain doesn’t include citation tags for everything in it, nor do my notes. Please google everything I say, and let me know where you find matches. Thank you.

      1. It does look like flagrant copyright violations.

        The Heritage Foundation (resp. their authors) own the copyright on those 1,318 words. To legally republish this large section in his own book, Paul would have needed explicit permission from the Heritage Foundation.

        Paul’s recent statements show that he does not understand copyright. Or, if he understands copyright, he no longer cares about other people’s property rights once it becomes inconvenient for me. Which makes him the same type of scumbag as other politicians.

        1. *gasp*

          Obvious concern troll is obvious.

        2. Rrabbit I would like to commend you for totally conflating the concepts of ‘property right’ and statutorily arbitrary ‘intellectual property’.

          1. One of those inherently exists in the relationship between man and nature, while the other exists only on arbitrary legislation. But yeah, they’re totally the same thing!

          2. Rand Paul supports “intellectual property rights”.

          3. Yes, statutorily arbitrary.

            It must be fun being so ignorant.

    3. So he cited it but didn’t quote? Sounds like more of an editing error. That or laziness. I would think someone trying to plagiarize wouldn’t leave behind clues on purpose. I give this a big “meh”.

  9. There is no excusing Paul, so why bother? If he wanted to be unaccountable for his actions he would have ran as a Democrat in the first place. Its a false equivalence to compare him to Obama and Biden. His father switched parties twice in his career. Rand could have joined Team Unacountable while making noise about ‘reforming within’, ‘moderating the tone’, revising ‘the tradition of the Cleveland and the DLC.’ No one held a gun to his head. He made his choice even while knowing he possessed a less than spotless record.

  10. It is a FE, but there is some truth to the hypocritical responses. Obama’s auto-biography is made up in parts and the media said squat and he got elected – twice. Remember when the NYT had a couple of deadbeat journalists writing for them who were plagiarists? Yet, people still go on and on about Fox News.

    I don’t understand people. Are they so unoriginal in their thoughts as to not be able to write in their own words? How hard could it have been to take those 1300 words and “rework” them?

    1. Many of these books and speeches by politicians are written by staffers and ghost writers.

      1. Yeah, somehow that excuse works for Obama et al., but when Ron Paul gets paid to put his name on a newsletter, why, the buck stops there!

  11. If you must write prose or poems, the words you use should be your own. Don’t plagiarize or take ‘on loan’. There’s always someone, somewhere, with a big nose, who knows, who’ll trip you up and laugh when you fall.”
    ? Steven Morrissey

  12. Read the article at the link. This is making a mountain out of a molehill. The only thing communicated is that Cato, Paul, and others are in so much agreement that they share a lot of ideas and are not at all perturbed that Paul is using some of their text verbatim especially when he points out that he is using wording verbatim. Basically, Cato authors are saying they don’t mind being Paul’s open source speech writers. Where is the crime exactly? Much ado about nothing.

    1. The problem is that perception is reality for so many of those who will decide who the next president will be.

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  14. Oh no! Oh me, oh my…I thought plagiarizing was a thing of the past. After all, Obama does it so that makes it ok, right? No? Oh, this must be one of those “It’s for me, not for thee” rules. Low information Liberal Progressives can do it, but no one else.

    Just a little aside here for the low-information Liberal Progressives: the end notes clearly define the sourcing for the book. But let us not forget the plagiarizing issue of our current POTUS. “President Obama’s second State of the Union address contained enough recycled ideas and lines lifted from speeches of others to make historians wince,” writes Felzenberg. “Had the president submitted the text of his second State of the Union Address in the form of a college term paper, he would have been sent forthwith to the nearest academic dean.”

    And as with the fake birth certificate, you all refuse to educate yourselves on, we could go on and on with the true plagiarism of our fake president.

  15. Uruguay permits dueling, but for all practical purposes it’s a lost cause. “Most of the duels never reach the field of honor. There is so much red tape to its organization that the principals usually cool off long before it can be held.” 1

    1. Rand Paul, Government Bullies: How Everyday South Americans are Being Harasssed, Abused, and Imprisoned by the Feds (Montevideo: Calle Andes, 2012).

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