answering pollit

By Owen Paine on Tuesday January 10, 2012 06:22 PM

recall the Nation's gal attack on ron paul pwogs
here's a response
--miracle max provided link ---

a clip:

" Ross Perot in 1991 (whose third-party candidacy created the space to challenge NAFTA) and Ralph Nader in 2000 (who raised questions about corporate politics and party complicity), the presence of Paul is raising serious questions about some elephants in the room. How do we expect solidarity among folks of color when the cost-benefit analysis is played out by pitting the issues that concern white folks and some US folks of color against issues affecting international populations or other US folks of color, as Pollit does in her column?"

Comments (17)

ROFL, squared:

NAFTA passed and remains both in full force and utterly off-the-table.

Nader was fun while he lasted, but disappeared at the moment he could have at least launched a blast against the Electoral College, and now writes books about billionaires saving us -- all while the rank purchasing of elections has accelerated to new, unimagined heights.

To say that Ron Paul is "raising serious questions" about war and empire is doubly wrong. Not only is that issue pretty secondary and subsidiary to his constituency, but the fact that it's coming from an "unelectable" candidate means it's not serious.

Remember Barry Commoner's experience on that issue?

It is simply not permitted to raise serious issues within our system. Why do would-be philosophers continue to miss this key point?

Heavens crash, I agree entirely with Dawson. The only reason Paul gets to raise his quixotic and comic challenge to Uncle's offshore adventures is to discredit that challenge by association with a "Jew hating racist" and paleoconservative isolationism, in general.


I tend to agree, Jack, but a fairly decent number of GOP primary voters, particularly some young'uns, arent buying the "Jew hating racist, paleoconservative isolationist" characterization, or simply aren't deterred by it. The smear of anti semitism and weak on defense just don't resonate with his people. There's some encouragement to be found in that.

The wholly predictable smear campaign from the usual suspects hasn't slowed the good doctor from marching ahead, nor has it dampened his anti war, anti police state message.

Al Schumann:

I'm in no disagreement with any of the comments, and want to add something to CZ's.

1) I think the appeal he has to the conservative kids comes from perception of a parochialism that isn't evangelically vicious. He offers an alternative to high cortisol content conservatism. Big swinging wingnut candidates look for followers who have become stress and rage junkies. If some of the conservative kids are burning out on that, I'm delighted.

2) all racism is right wing, in which I include liberals, but not all conservatives are racists. They can be wrong without being cretins. Some of them care more about the romantic localist stuff; e.g. a nation of farmers markets and skilled tradesman plying their trades from hobbit shops, small towns with wise elders and surprisingly well stocked libraries. That's not something I'd want to discourage.

I don't believe Ron Paul cares one whit about any of that, but if more conservatives want to go that route, then God bless them.


What Al said. The Paul kids don't appear motivated in the least by racism
but rather by a naive yet well intended faith in a "color blind" society.

Yes, they see much more peaceful than the high testosterone bullies our political system stokes and panders to. They're almost entirely pacifist.

If, as the good doctor says, most of his contributions come from people in the military, there's something encouraging about that too. Might our beloved, revered, worshipped Men in Uniform be seeing the folly of military empire from the inside? Might their support for Paul be a quiet form of subversion and passive aggressive resistance?

Michael Hureaux:

It could be similar to antebellum politics in one sense- there could emerge a political body made up of Paul supporters and disafected "democratic" voters, i.e., folks who mirror the components of the disintegrating Whig party in the pre-Civil War period and who went on to form what became the republican party. That organization, of course, had to fight for its right to govern during the Civil War. This is such peculiar country race and class wise that a late repeat of what has gone before is enirely possible.


Al has the diff by the nads here

Paulites are not in frenzy mode
In general libertarians tend to be calm
It's annoying and they like that

The bring the boys and girls home passage
In his speech is very fine indeed
And his distinction between the corporate war and weapons profiteers
And the military allows our warrior cult types a bridge to cross over

Of course paulism is strictly third party material
Nader has suggested a grand coalition

A Paul Nader ticket talk would certainly boil some broth eh?

Recall Reagan ford ticket talk

Al Schumann:

Some nice speculation and parallels here.

I add CZ's to MH's and OP's. I think it's worth watching, though I can't for the life of me think of anything to nudge it along.


Perhaps the empire slowly expires under the groaning weight of indifference, fatigue, cynicism, and utter lack of enthusiasm (and funding) for the project. Inasmuch as the young Paulites are saying, "Leave me alone. Stay out of my business. Stay our of THEIR business," I'm all for 'em.

They do this thing with their "Revolution" signs where they turn the letters "evol" around into LOVE. What this has to do with ending the Fed or sound money is beyond me. But who can't embrace the sentiment?

I've learned to grasp at straws, reach for crumbs that fall off the table, enjoy the absurdity of pissing in the wind (pick your cliche). This is to say: I take what I can get. And I like what I see in the Paul kids, and in some of the old pissed off white guys, too, who are shooting wildly with their 2nd amendment protected ammo, often in the wrong direction, but sometimes hitting the bull's eye.

I think it is grasping at straws, because Paul is a sanctioned sideshow. He's a cul de sac for people who might otherwise radicalize, but who now instead get caught up in petit bourgeois notions of moneyed liberty, propertarian dogma and Constitutional purism.



you confuse casting a ballot and joining a legion

give other human minds more room to maneuver


No I don't. Paul isn't just attracting voters. He's building cadre for his son's future campaign.

Why don't you worry your own mind, anyway, eh?



" just attracting voters"

he is however as you suggest
attracting voters too

those NOT inducting themselves
in the legion as cadre

those merely taking the time
..what half an hour ...
to cast a vote that suggests support
bring the boys home
civil liberties
damn the fed .....
fine motives
that he has others
well yes
he is a bundle of preferences

one weights the pros and cons

and no the message isn't loud and clear but the anti uncle foreign war machine
uncle police chief
paul votres will get picked up in exit polling


Not either/or, Jack.

Al Schumann:

Yep, it's the masses that make history. Ron Paul is nothing. At the end of the day, he's a staunch member of the corporate party machine; a professional politician, the lowest form of life in the corporate sector. My best guess is he's probably hoping to pass his following along to his kid.

The people, however, matter greatly. If they really believe any of the things they say they do, to the extent they'd balk at giving a vote to Mittbarack Boromney, then we're looking at a political culture that's getting just a smidgen healthier.

We'll see though, won't we?


I'm not proud of pissing in the coffee, here, and I like most of the Paulies I know in meat time, but they can be generally filed under a couple of reliable categorical headers:

1. Goldbuggers
2. Nativists
3. Petit Bourgeois

That doesn't mean they're worse than merit liberals or corporate conservatives. I see the Paulies as analogs to the ego-anarchists of the 1970s and 1980s, rejecting the images of power while their failure to adapt, organize, coordinate or analyze tacitly approves of all the abuses of power which don't directly harm them.

That's not a bad place to be if you want to be anything-but-mainstream, but this idea that their position will lead to an improved historical, economic or political understanding is too hopeful and naive, I think.

Michael Hureaux:

As I implied before, i think if the Paulite thing goes anywhere, it will go off in a pre-civil conflict direction of a third party politics that's a wild mix of radical libertarian and "green" conservative tendencies. it may accidently challenge the hup ho, it may not. This country is a weird Huxleyan amalgam anymore, in both the Brave New World and Groucho Marx's Huxley College sense. Where it comes down off of its red bull martini high is anyone's guess at this point.

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