Skip to main content

View Diary: Ron Paul, In His Own Words (117 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  I'm a little underwhelmed (0+ / 0-)

    The statistical point he was making about 95% of blacks must be criminals seems to be a jab at the competency of DC criminal justice (since 85% of African Americans there have been arrested according to the report he was talking about) more than at blacks.  The stuff about how it isn't irrational to be afraid of crime from African-Americans isn't markedly different than Jesse Jackson saying (at around the same time) that if he hears footsteps behind him when he walks at night, he's relieved to turn around and see it's a white man, or the stuff that Bill Cosby regularly lays into.  It IS clear that under a Paul presidency, race-based quotas for anything would disappear.  I'm not sure that qualifies him as a racist nutbag either.

    And, as far as his walkback goes, I think it's perfectly plausible to give him the benefit of the doubt and assume it could have been an overeager staffer (that should have been fired and maybe was) pumping out stuff into the newsletter that "sort of" gets the Paul position right but attaches with it a bunch of unhelpful rhetoric.  Frankly, that's pretty standard practice for all congressmen to have much of their policy positions and newsletter type communiques written by staffers (and they don't usually sit there all day reading through and signing off on everything either).  

    The whole thing doesn't speak highly of Paul, to be sure, his specific rhetoric in his quotes belie a problem of letting himself get too caught up in his own point and not realizing how most people might take what he's saying (this is a problem, btw, that we saw in the second Republican debate when he let Rudy tee off on him), and he ought to have handled it all much differently, but it's a far cry from Ron Paul as Screamingly Racist White Supremacist Nutbag.  Frankly, if we're talking about presidential candidates who would explicitly legalize torture and continue a foreign policy that's killed probably close to a million people by now (including Iraqis and Afghanis), that strikes me as something of an order worse than somebody whose only racial policy pledge is to nix race-based affirmative action.  

    This "all-or-nothing" approach to politics is also sort of an irritant.  If someone is not a perfect progressive liberal they are just as bad as every non progressive liberal.  You're either with us or against us, and distinctions are meaningless.  

    The fact is no Dkos regulars, even us Ron Paul supporters (there are a few) are trying to get progressive Democrats to even pledge to consider voting for him in a general, much less lift a finger on his behalf.  But Paul represents a critical voice of dissent within the Republican party, and that voice doesn't just help the Republican party (and I am of the mind that the WHOLE of America is better off when BOTH parties get better and offer better choices; some disagree and would rather one party become screamingly offensive nutbags and the other party gain singular control of all elected offices in the nation, and I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree on the wisdom and reasonability of the latter stance), it helps the entire national conversation.  It's easy to stand in front of a Democratic audience and spread a Ron Paulish message.  It takes brass cojones to do so as a Texas congressman in a national Republican primary.  Good for him.  

    He's good for his party, he's good for the Democratic party (I think it's high time the question of torture and extraordinary rendition and habeas corpus gets posed to some of the Democrats too, if just to make the Republican frontrunners look even worse), and most importantly, HE'S GOOD FOR THE COUNTRY, which is what it should all be about.  

    Some questionable racist comments written in a newsletter in 1992 and at least attempted to be explained later doesn't take away from that, or the mountains of good that Ron Paul is doing NOW.  It's a good diary, I should add, and certainly worth having out there, but I think it's worth keeping in context.    

    What's the difference between Iraq and Vietnam? Bush knew how to get out of Vietnam.

    by glibfidget on Sat May 19, 2007 at 01:11:30 PM PDT

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site