Friday, January 11, 2008

Ron Paul's Racism

As if declaring civil rights legislation discriminatory against racist property owners, or siding with the Confederacy during the Civil War, should not have been enough of a warning for the remaining progressives that support the Ron Paul candidacy:

Ron Paul '90s newsletters rant against blacks, gays

Paul Todd

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- 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."

CNN recently obtained the newsletters -- written in the 1990s and one from the late 1980s -- after a report was published about their existence in The New Republic.

None of the newsletters CNN found says who wrote them, but each was published under Paul's name between his stints as a U.S. congressman from Texas.

Paul told CNN's "The Situation Room" Thursday that he didn't write any of the offensive articles and has "no idea" who did.

"When you bring this question up, you're really saying, 'You're a racist' or 'Are you a racist?' And the answer is, 'No, I'm not a racist,'" he said.

Paul said he had never even read the articles with the racist comments.

"I do repudiate everything that is written along those lines," he said, adding he wanted to "make sure everybody knew where I stood on this position because it's obviously wrong."

But that's not good enough, says one political veteran.

"These stories may be very old in Ron Paul's life, but they're very new to the American public and they deserve to be totally ventilated," said David Gergen, a CNN senior political analyst. "I must say I don't think there's an excuse in politics to have something go out under your name and say, 'Oh by the way, I didn't write that.'"

Paul, who is not considered a front-runner, has become an Internet phenomenon in the current race, raising tens of millions of dollars from a devoted online base, many of them young people drawn to his libertarian straight talk.

The controversial newsletters include rants against the Israeli lobby, gays, AIDS victims and Martin Luther King Jr. -- described as a "pro-Communist philanderer." One newsletter, from June 1992, right after the LA riots, says "order was only restored in L.A. when it came time for the blacks to pick up their welfare checks."

Another says, "The criminals who terrorize our cities -- in riots and on every non-riot day -- are not exclusively young black males, but they largely are. As children, they are trained to hate whites, to believe that white oppression is responsible for all black ills, to 'fight the power,' to steal and loot as much money from the white enemy as possible."

In some excerpts, the reader may be led to believe the words are indeed from Paul, a resident of Lake Jackson, Texas. In the "Ron Paul Political Report" from October 1992, the writer describes carjacking as the "hip-hop thing to do among the urban youth who play unsuspecting whites like pianos."

The author then offers advice from others on how to avoid being carjacked, including "an ex-cop I know," and says, "I frankly don't know what to make of such advice, but even in my little town of Lake Jackson, Texas, I've urged everyone in my family to know how to use a gun in self defense. For the animals are coming."

In his interview with CNN, Paul said that's language he would never use. "People who know me, nobody is going to believe this," he said. "That's just not my language. It's not my life."

He added, "Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks, Ghandi, they're the heroes [of my life]."

Matt Welch, the editor-in-chief of "Reason" magazine who shares some of Paul's beliefs on big government, says he has never heard the congressman make racist comments like those in the newsletters.

"What I think some people are looking for him to do is to say, 'OK, who wrote that?' I mean, there's 20 years, give or take, worth of newsletters there," Welch said.

Paul said the editor of publications "is responsible for daily activities." But he also cited "transition" and "changes" and said that some people were hired to write stories "but I didn't know their names."

The presidential hopeful described the newsletter revelations as a "rehash" of old material dug up by his opponents because he is gaining ground with black voters due to his stance against the war in Iraq and the war on drugs.

"I am the anti-racist because I am the only candidate -- Republican or Democrat -- who would protect the minority against these vicious drug laws," he said.

"Libertarians are incapable of being a racist, because racism is a collectivist idea."

Paul's rhetoric against African Americans is not some revelation for anyone who has paid attention to his campaign and career. I still have a hard time, an impossible time, actually, wondering how any progressive or liberal can rationalize a person who states the Civil War was a travesty against slave owners. This in itself should tell you how seriously you can take the claims of such a person when he asserts that some mysterious ghostwriter penned his newsletter "20 years" ago--well, OK, fifteen years ago, but what is half a decade between folks?

And with regards to his newsletter, this is the second time a major news outlet has picked up on this in the last few months. I am surprised that it has taken this long for people to finally start paying closer attention to this issue. You have to fancy the self-defense by means of feigned ignorance, when it is your newsletter, with your name on it (and the writer, presuming that Paul is being truthful and it really is someone else, in your employ).
I have never in my life met a publisher, even of newsletters, who failed to know who was writing for his or her publication(s), particularly when it was being done in that person's name (meaning expressed editorial endorsement).

Of course, if this person's name was Kucinich or Gravel, and had they written or orated sentiments like this (even if it was done by a third party that they hired but amazingly forgot about [from a man noted for his memory]), you know those self-hating progressives would be front and center hammering away. Notice, no commentary on this issue among his white leftist supporters. Could it be that you do not want to explain how someone could have his name, or entrust it with a political ally to the point that you do not even bother to edit or read what they write under your masthead, associated with expressions like calling Martin Luther King Jr. a "pro-Communist philanderer?" Oh, that is right, he had no knowledge, cannot remember a name on his life, so I am supposed to believe the good doctor is the anti-racist, unless one of his voters owns a business and wants to exclude blacks or is a slaveholder looking for your donations to buy his slaves' freedom, as opposed to being collectivist enough to fight for their freedom without compensation for the proprietor. Yes, that is real a paradise for liberty there.

Then again, I do not think I need to tell those liberal Paul supporters what the anti-racist's views are on affirmative action or Mexican immigrants. But, alas, he does not want to bomb and invade Iraq, Iran, and just about every other Middle Eastern country. Well, neither does Dennis Kucinich. Neither does Mike Gravel. Neither does the Green Party, and they are good on just about everything else, without having
to explain away supporting the compensation of slaveholders, opposing civil rights, labor unions, a minimum wage, environmental laws, universal health care, and anything resembling a social safety net for people. You know, life. And they do so without living the illusion they are going in some grand anti-war coalition with people who cannot get more than 10% of the vote in their own party (which is comprised of people who fathom the thought of interning Muslims), never mind the rest of the country (where appeals for eliminating Social Security, Head Start, Medicare, Medicaid, OSHA, EPA, and the Wagner Act are hardly going to attract the non-medicated and uninsured). Yes, because we all know the Cato Institute contributors are chomping at the bit to repay the collusion with future support for us.

No comments: