Thursday, April 15, 2010

Ron Paul rising

I get Rasmussen's clear right-wing leanings, but what's the point, at this point, of conducting a poll pitting Obama against Republican/conservative/libertarian fave Ron Paul?

An Obama-Paul race is "virtually dead even," according to the poll (42-41 for the president), but, let's be clear, Paul won't be the GOP nominee, his overzealous supporters basically rig those straw polls, and, unlike Obama, Paul's never really been vetted by the media (so the American people don't really know who he is).

As I wrote back in February:

Paul is no doubt pretty popular with the John Birch crowd, what with his extremist anti-government and isolationist views, proximity to racism (if not his own racism), and general paranoia. (For some elaboration, see Carl's post from 11/07.) He's more libertarian than Republican, and has no chance at the GOP nod in 2012, but it's good to see the movement conservatives at CPAC expose themselves for what they really are.

He's on top at the moment, but it won't last.

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  • Um, Rasmussen isn't a straw poll and those polled can't 'self select' into the polling pool.

    This poll was legit, by the pollster that came in most accurate in the last two election cycles.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:30 AM  

  • If Ron Paul were the slightest bit racist it would show up somewhere in the vast library of youtube clips of him spanning some 27 years. There would at least be some quote somewhere. All you have is guilt by 'association' in a liberal use of that term.

    But please clarify the John Bircher problem. I'm too young to have seen what caused it, but best I can research, Buckley et al just didn't like their opposition to the Vietnam war, and basically 'marginalized them' out of the movement. From what I can see of their stuff, they just stand for the Constitution. I'm interested in learning if that is wrong, however. Assuming you have actual facts.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:36 AM  

  • I'm old enough to remember the John Birch Society in its heyday in the 1950's and early 1960's. They saw a Communist plot behind everything and everyone, including President Eisenhower. They're very isolationist, they saw school desegregation as a plot to undermine education and "despoil our children."

    The reason Buckley disowned them was because he thought they were paranoid freaks and didn't want them associated with his brand of intellectual conservatism.

    By Blogger Mustang Bobby, at 12:40 PM  

  • "research" It's a wonderful thing and it's usually a cursory examination of a web site searching for bits and pieces to marshal support for your opinions.

    The JBS was positively and obsessively hysterical over that "Commie" Dwight Eisenhower and all the commies in his administration and there was no one around they didn't suspect and nothing so dreadful they didn't advocate it to get rid of these "enemies." I don't use the word hysterical lightly here. In fact they still call him a Communist subversive.

    Buckley had had enough of Welch by 1962 when the JBS had only been in existence 4 years. He denounced him as "irrational" which was a typical Buckley understatement. He was, in truth, freaking batshit insane and it's apparent to anyone hearing his speeches which you can find on youtube. Flouride in the water, sex education in the schools -- all these were and still are "proof" that the government is secretly in league with the Soviet Union, even though it collapsed under it's own weight 20 years ago.

    1962 was quite a bit before most Americans were aware of Vietnam and we only had a few advisers there so it's a bit precious to write off Buckley's contempt for Welch to the popular disgust with the war from the late 60's onward.

    By Blogger Capt. Fogg, at 10:01 AM  

  • Also, wasn't the JBS saying at the time that we had to stand and fight in Vietnam because of the dreaded "domino" theory (no, not the one where pizza is involved)? If we lost Vietnam, we'd lose all of Asia to the Communists, then India, and so on until the entire world was overrun by the Red tide of the Yellow horde? (Oh, look; paranoia in Technicolor!)

    To say that the JBS was against our involvement in Vietnam goes against everything they freaked out about.

    By Blogger Mustang Bobby, at 10:07 AM  

  • I believe the Domino Theory was a solid plank in the GOP platform, but of course even Democrats were spouting that one. Nixon said the lights of freedom would go out all over the world if we "cut and ran" or more accurately, if we allowed South Vietnam to have free elections.

    I think it's a mistake to search for logical consistency in anything those people said or continue to say.

    By Blogger Capt. Fogg, at 11:22 AM  

  • Oh, and about the racism charges. It's funny that people don't remember that Ron Paul's newsletters from the 80's and 90's did contain some controversial remarks about blacks and gay people, although there's no proof Paul wrote them. Quite a bit was made of that during the campaign, but of course anything more than 6 weeks ago might never well have happened as far as Americans are concerned.

    I quote CNN here: "A series of newsletters in the name of GOP presidential hopeful Ron Paul contain several racist remarks -- including one that says order was restored to Los Angeles after the 1992 riots when blacks went 'to pick up their welfare checks.'"

    At that time ( 2008 ) I was a stronger supporter of Paul, but these remarks left a very bad impression on me even though I'm giving him the benefit of the doubt.

    By Blogger Capt. Fogg, at 11:28 AM  

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