Ron Paul is finally getting a lot of press. Some higher power heard the collective prayers (or rants) from Paul supporters, and granted their wish. But as is wont to happen with wishes, it didn't turn out quite as hoped.
Now the media, instead of ignoring Ron Paul's numbers in this straw poll or that conservative conference, is reporting on Paul's surge in the Iowa pre-caucus polls. Mostly, it's "He might win Iowa, but that just shows how marginal Iowa is" or "There's no way he'll win the nomination." There are also a spate of articles on his newsletters from the 1990's with some racist articles that appeared under his byline.
All this gives Ron Paul supporters a new reason to call foul. I'm glad they have a new reason, because the old one was worn thinner than the elbows on my favorite shirt. They are shocked... shocked that the media is not all adulation and hero worship. I don't know how this happened, but every single one of Paul's supporters ignored what happens when the press turns its attention on someone, especially a candidate for president. The anointed Obama excepted, of course.
Now, I think it's a great idea to report on Paul's policies, and give them a real good inspection, because they don't hold up to scrutiny. But the coverage on his newsletter is also plenty fair. Paul has barely explained this ghost from his past. If I have to fill the blanks that he leaves, I'm not giving him much benefit of the doubt. Here goes:
- Paul is a strict constitutional libertarian, and there aren't many around.
- He'll hang with anyone who also says that they want the federal government out of their business.
- There's a concentration of somewhat like-minded people in militias, white-supremacists groups, gun rights/survivalist groups.
- Ron Paul craves any audience, and this is what came to him. He didn't look too closely at anything else they support and stand for. Why? Because the constitution is all that matters.
- There is a lot of evidence that Paul is not a racist, but he didn't mind associating with them, or giving them control of his newsletter.
- I don't want this guy as my president. I'll add this of my pile of reasons.
- Move over, Tea Party. Cue a new bunch of people screaming about Sen. Byrd being in the KKK.
Don't get no respect:
"Wow. The second Ron Paul becomes a viable candidate, the slander machine begins. Someone REALLY doesn't want him to win... Don't you find it odd that there was no mention of him before he started polling first, and now that his numbers are rising, every mention is negative?!"
"Now that media's attempt to eliminate Paul haven't worked and he's due to win Iowa, now all of a sudden 'iowa doesn't matter', and here come the tired re-treads of this old canard."
"MSM should stick with what they do best cover Britney Spears or a "sports hero" or any other useless time wasting coverage... " - Atlantic commentsBest defense of Ron Paul:
"Libertarianism is an attractive philosophy to racists... because it states that people should be allowed to freely associate and enter into contracts with whomever they decide. This would mean racists could have a private club and only allow same race people to join... History shows, however, that racists will flock to whatever party serves their interests at the moment. They will switch parties based on superficial reasons. They've switched between Democrats and Republicans." - Atlantic comment
Update 12/29/11. I allude to Paul's continuing pattern of working with whackos, but I should name names. Here goes: Alex Jones, truther and major conspiracy theorist. The New York Times has a longer list. I think this is important because it indicates potential risks in a Ron Paul presidency. All presidencies have risks, and it's good to identify them as well as we can and then choose. By the way, it was almost all Ron Paul all the time in political news today. He's not missing in the media anymore.