Wednesday, July 31, 2013

A. Barton Hinkle Points Out Why Chris Christie's Argument Against Rand Paul and Libertarianism Makes No Sense

Basically, talking to "widows and orphans" on any policy measure would be tough.  Read the whole piece here:

Example: Back in February, Christie signed an executive order loosening restrictions on alcohol sales. (The order lets establishments that have seasonal licenses to sell booze start doing so two months earlier.) No doubt he had good reasons, such as helping businesses recover from the economic hit of Hurricane Sandy.

On the other hand, according to the Centers for Disease Control alcohol annually causes 75,000 premature deaths in the United States – which is 25 times the death toll of 9/11. Would Christie be willing to sit down with the widows and orphans of drunk-driving victims, or of alcoholics who slowly drank themselves to death, and explain why he is making it easier for people to drink? That would be a tough conversation to have. But it would not make Christie wrong on the merits.

Here's another: Last month Christie, a critic of Obamacare, vetoed a bill to make the expansion of Medicaid in New Jersey permanent. Would he sit down with the widows and orphans of people who died from a lack of affordable health care and explain his "esoteric, intellectual" rationale for the veto? That would be tough, too. But it would not, ipso facto, make him wrong.

Christie has been more open to gun control than other Republicans, but he does not support a total ban on all private firearms. Would he tell the widows and orphans of gun violence why? Christie does not support putting armed guards in schools to prevent mass shootings. Would he explain why to the grieving parents of Newtown, Conn.?

Government exists to protect all people's rights, not some people's feelings. A country in which the government can, in the name of national security, invade any home or arrest any person, with no explanation and no appeal, might be secure from foreign invasion. But its people are not safe – they are simply threatened by a different menace.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Christie is the King of Bacon

Rand Paul on CNN:




Rand Paul is the Future of the GOP, Not Chris Christie

Rachel Alexander of the Guardian makes some great points on why Rand Paul and not Chris Christie is the future of the GOP:

Christie is a big government Republican, whereas Paul is a small government Republican, the darling of the Tea Party. Many believe that Republicans are losing on social issues, especially gay marriage, and that Christie's liberal views on social issues make him more electable in a presidential general election. However, much of the conservative base will not bother to show up to vote in the general election if they perceive their candidate as too liberal, as happened in the 2008 election with John McCain.

Christie started out as somewhat of a conservative governor. But over the past year, he has shifted to the left. He cozied up to President Barack Obama, lavishing praise upon him more than once. When Mitt Romney was running for president, Christie reportedly refused to make public appearances with him towards the end of the campaign, yet appeared publicly with Obama, praising him for his efforts on Hurricane Katrina.

...

While Christie has a high 74% approval rating in his blue state, it's arguably more evidence that he is really a Democrat. The New York Times ranked Christie as the least conservative governor of the nation's 30 Republican governors. In contrast, Paul is rated the third most conservative GOP Senator. Paul has a 100% lifetime rating from the American Conservative Union.

...

Attacking the libertarians in the GOP as Christie has done will not help the Republican party or Christie's election chances. The Reagan revolution came about because Reagan was able, with the help of the late William F Buckley Jr and his National Review magazine, to bring together a coalition of libertarians, religious conservatives and fiscal conservatives. Paul, who is outspoken about his Christian faith, is one of a few Republicans who could rebuild that coalition.

Rand Paul: We Need Republican Community Organizers

Some good ideas from Rand Paul (h/t The Brody File):


Charley Murray Defends Rand Paul from RINO's

Charley Murray has some great advice for Republicans and also says he has been impressed by Rand Paul:

"My counsel is really simple," Murray said. "It is that 'We the Republicans,' I want them to say, 'We the Republicans are in favor of people being free to live their lives as they see fit; we're in favor of enterprise where people can start business easily, where they are not hounded by these volumes of regulations; we want opportunity; and we are also against this collusive capitalism whereby the government and business sort of collaborate with each other, with sort of patting each other's back. I want a Republican Party that is enthusiastically, aggressively in favor of liberty, opportunity and enterprise."

Murray then explained how he had been impressed with Paul when he heard him speak and found that he was in agreement with the junior senator from Kentucky.

"I was actually around Rand Paul a few weeks ago and listened to him," he continued. "I listened to him talk for about 20, 25 minutes and I said to myself, 'You know, I can't think of a single thing he has said that I don't agree with.' My views and Rand Paul's are real, real close and much closer than my views are to Gov. Christie's."

Rand Paul: Chris Christie is "Sad & Cheap" For Using 9/11 Victims

Monday, July 29, 2013

Rand Paul Op-Ed on School Choice

Rand Paul (along with Senators Lee, McConnell, Scott and Alexander) has penned an op-ed on School Choice in the Huffington Post:

As the Wall Street Journal noted in 2010, 2,000 of the nation's 20,000 high schools produce roughly 50 percent of all dropouts, and African-American children have a 50/50 chance of having to attend one of these so-called "dropout factories."

According to the Census Bureau, in 2011 the average dropout over age 25 earned just $18,796 while the average high school graduate without a bachelor's degree earned $26,699 -- a full 42 percent more. A high school graduate who goes on to earn a bachelor's degree will earn nearly 100 percent more, on average, then a high-school dropout.

Choice breeds competition -- which is the best way to improve schools. It creates a powerful incentive for schools to get better, while at the same time creating much-needed options for children trapped in less than satisfactory schools. That is exactly what we see when public charter schools are allowed to expand.

In Washington, D.C., the 41 percent of students who attend charter schools learn the equivalent of 72 days more in reading and 101 days more in math each year than similar students attending district schools, according to a Stanford University study.

In short, school choice has given poor, mostly minority families the hope that government has not. Young boys and girls, who might not have otherwise had the opportunity to excel, have become successful men and women leaders in their communities--due to receiving a better education than they otherwise would have.

Despite its overwhelming success -- and basic justice -- many bureaucrats defend their broken status quo, and see school choice not as an opportunity, but as a threat. Our children deserve better than a system that puts bureaucrats' wants before students' needs. Parents deserve better than being forced to pay for policies that trap their own children in failing schools, while denying them the equal educational opportunities that better paid politicians and bureaucrats enjoy.

Great schools are born in communities, not bureaucracies. At Boys Latin in Philadelphia, kids are taught Latin for four years. They are taught discipline and citizenship. This year, over 95 percent of their graduates will go on to college.

The current 20th century, centralized bureaucratic model has dropped American education to 17th in the world, even as the international economy turns toward technologies and industries that depend of education more than ever before in human history.

We need a new direction. To succeed globally, we need to educate locally.



Rand Paul Correctly Calls Peter King and Chris Christie the Types of Republicans That Are Bankrupting Our Government

Rand Paul made the comments at a fundraiser, it would be nice if someone can dig up a video of it.  Anyway, I wholeheartedly agree with him.  Both Christie and King are big government Republicans with no business representing the Republican Party:

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) on Sunday hit back at Gov. Chris Christie (R-N.J.) and Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) after their criticisms of him over national security, saying that their spending policies did more to harm the country.

...

"They're precisely the same people who are unwilling to cut the spending, and their 'gimme, gimme, gimme —give me all my Sandy money now,'" Paul said at a fundraiser on Sunday according to the Associated Press.

"Those are the people who are bankrupting the government and not letting enough money be left over for national defense," he added.

...

On Sunday, though, Paul defended his views, questioning the need for the NSA's collection of phone and internet data.

"I don't mind spying on terrorists," Paul said. "I just don't like spying on all Americans."

Friday, July 26, 2013

Conor Friedersdorf responds to Chris Christie's criticism of Rand Paul & libertarians

In case you missed it, Chris Christie dismissed the libertarian critiques of the NSA spying program as "esoteric", implied Rand Paul was dangerous and even brought up the widows and orphans of 9/11 to boot.  Conor Friedersdorf of the Atlantic has a great response which takes the form of a letter to said widows and orphans:

I'm truly sorry for your loss. I know the family members of people who died on 9/11 have a wide range of ideas about how America ought to deal with the threat of future terrorism. I won't presume anything about you except that you hate terrorism. So do I. It injures and kills innocents. And it attempts to use successful murders to terrorize even the people who aren't killed. Terrorists frighten societies into compromising their values in ways they never would but for terrorism.

That is a primary terrorist goal.

The core American values of 1776 and 1789 that I've studied and loved since I was a child don't permit us to torture other humans, to use drones to target and kill people whose identities we don't even know, or to spy on the private communications of hundreds of millions of innocents. If it wasn't for Osama Bin Laden and the 9/11 hijackers we wouldn't permit any of those things.

So I can't help but feel that Al Qaeda succeeded in changing us -- that the terrorists won a small victory. But the victory won't last. Even as America has beefed up security at its airports and harbors, even as its airline passengers stand ready to fight off any attempted hijacking, even as our spy agencies infiltrate Al Qaeda and our FBI preempts plots with good, old-fashioned police work, civil libertarians are fighting to reestablish core Constitutional protections and values.

Those fights can both be won.  

We're fighting to make sure that being safer from terrorism doesn't come at the cost of liberty or justice, and sending a message to all those who'd try to change us by making us afraid: you will fail.

Bush and Obama have betrayed fear through the immoral policies they've adopted.

And Gov. Christie has just embraced the counterterrorism strategy of George W. Bush, a man whose fearfulness after 9/11 impaired his capacity for good judgment: due in part to fear of being attacked again, he launched a war against Iraq that killed many more Americans than 9/11. As it turns out, the threat Iraq posed was far less than what he led Americans to believe it was. 

Christie has also embraced the strategy of Barack Obama, who would have us believe that staying safe from terrorism requires a surveillance state the country got along without for all its history -- that to stay safe from terrorism, Americans must let him monitor all of our phone calls and more, and that debate about these policies isn't even permissible, they must be kept secret. 

Sitting before you, I won't exploit the memory of your loved one by pretending I oppose these policies on their behalf, or on yours. I will only say that no free society can totally eliminate the risk of terrorism, that nearly everyone who died on 9/11 loved America and the liberties it afforded, and that fighting for the full array of liberties that they enjoyed and loved before 9/11 does not in any way dishonor their memory -- it honors the freedom that I love as much as they did.

I'm sorry again for your loss, and I regret that Gov. Christie dragged you into this. Without invoking your suffering, his arguments aren't compelling enough to persuade a majority that he's correct.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Rand Paul Speech at the VFW

The Washington Post "fact checker" Needs to Fact Check Himself on Ike

The Washington Post "fact checker" (who had previously and rather dishonestly "fact checked" Rand Paul's State of the Union response) just gave Rand Paul 4 Pinocchios (a score meaning he is lying through his teeth) for saying that he received guidance and inspiration from Eisenhower.  I would think that to get such a score he would have had to dig up some speech or some paper that Rand Paul gave/wrote saying how he thought Eisenhower was Satan or something.  But no, Glenn Kessler finds some policies that Ike supported and Rand Paul doesn't (foreign aid, the CIA and international organizations) to prove his point and gives Rand Paul the worst score he can.  

I think the "fact checker" should actually look up in the dictionary what inspiration and guidance means, it certainly doesn't mean "I agree with everything that another person said and did".  If Rand Paul said he received inspiration and guidance from the Beatles, would he deserve 4 Pinocchios for not having a coke, alcohol or heroin addiction like various members of the band did?

So what about Eisenhower inspires Rand Paul?  Well first, he was a former Supreme Commander of Allied Forces who becomes President and did what he thought what was best for the country and not just his friends.  He didn't juice defense spending and military projects to help his former comrades in the Defense Department (I realize it was the War Department during WWII, but you get the drift).  Instead, he cut the defense budget by 27% in real terms during his time in office.

And what probably most inspired Rand Paul was Ike's warning about the "military industrial complex" in his farewell address in 1961:  

This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence -- economic, political, even spiritual -- is felt in every city, every State house, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society.

In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.

We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.

Sounds like something Rand Paul would agree with 100%.  So why did he get 4 Pinocchios again?  Maybe Glenn Kessler needs to complete his "fact checking" before writing hit pieces in the future.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Rand Paul's Response to the Possibility of a Detroit Bailout: Over My Dead Body!

Gotta love him:

"There's some good things that come out of bankruptcy," Paul said in a phone interview from Iowa. "One is you get to start over. Bankruptcy lets you be forgiven of your debt. And you do so by getting new management, better management, and by getting rid of unwieldy contracts, contracts that give you where public employees are getting paid twice what private employees are and things come back more to normal. That's the way cities and businesses can recover. 

"I basically say he [Obama] is bailing them out over my dead body because we don't have any money in Washington."

...

Paul said the reason he is going to fight to stop any efforts to bail out Detroit is that if the president succeeds in bailing it out, that will send a signal to the rest of cities and states nationwide that the federal government will bail them out to if they conduct reckless spending. 

"Those who don't have their house in order, who are teetering on disaster, will continue to make bad decisions. And by the way these [local and state budget choices] are tough decisions. I'm not saying they are all prescient and that it will be easy on everybody who works for the city or the state, but you need to make these decisions and the sooner you make them the better. If you wait to make them, it's even harder on people."

...

"You don't set up an implicit promise from the federal government that everybody is getting bailed out," Paul said. "It's sort of like too big to fail for banks. If you have too big to fail for cities or for states and they believe they'll be bailed out they'll continue to make unwise decisions. 

"So, really, the answer is, just like the federal government, live within your means and spend what you have but don't spend money you don't have. The problem is so many of our state governments, the politicians are being elected by the public service unions. If the public service unions want to be paid twice as much as what private sector employees make, they want twice as good benefits and twice as good a pension. 

"I mean the statistics in California are staggering. I think there's over 100,000 people there getting over $100,000 a year in retirement. You got police chiefs in medium-sized cities getting $350,000 a year for a salary. It's become untenable. But the main thing is we cannot send a signal from the federal government that cities and states are going to be too big to fail."

Ultimately, Paul said, if Detroit had been more fiscally responsible before, this process would not have needed to happen. "Bankruptcy in Detroit is going to much harder than if ten years ago, they had started downsizing and making their pensions and salaries more commensurate with the private sector," he said.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Washington Monthly Profile of Rand Paul

While it's basically written from the perspective of someone who doesn't like Rand Paul too much, the profile does have some interesting tidbits:

Even as the neoconservatives are busy trying to stamp out Paul's brand of foreign policy, however, Paul is engaging in a concerted outreach to them. After Paul won his primary, he spoke with a group of GOP foreign policy hands at a meeting organized by the Foreign Policy Initiative that included Senor, Bill Kristol, Jamie Fly, and Tom Donnelly. Senor met with Paul again before the Israel trip, and the two discussed Senor's book on the Israeli economy. Elliott Abrams, a former George W. Bush administration official who is now a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, has met with Paul twice, forty-five minutes each time, talking mostly about the Middle East. He found Paul willing to listen and argue. There are two possible explanations for Paul's discussions with neoconservatives, Abrams said. "One is purely political—that is, like the trip to Israel, it is a part of creating a better image of himself as someone who listens to everyone and who is just seeking as many opinions as he can get. The other theory is that he's actually interested in seeing what we think."

Thursday, July 11, 2013

PPP Poll: Rand Paul Leads in Iowa But Needs Help with Women and the Elderly

The polls of the 2016 GOP nomination race so far make Rand Paul a frontrunner in all of them I've seen but, as I've said before, he has some major weaknesses among women and the elderly.  

In the latest PPP poll, Rand Paul is in first with 18%, Chris Christie is second with 16%, Paul Ryan is third with 15% and Jeb Bush at 14%.  As you can see, his lead is razor thin and possible wouldn't be a lead at all if Jeb Bush decides not to run and endorses Chris Christie instead.  Every time we have a race of 1 moderate vs. a bunch of conservatives of various stripes, the moderate wins.  Also, with a poll this tight, the race becomes a turnout game.  And who usually turns out for primaries and caucuses?  The elderly.  Which is a group that Rand Paul is consistently weak with.  In this poll, he only gets 11% of the vote from the >65 crew, which puts him in 6th place, just after "Someone Else/Not Sure".  That is not a recipe for success.  Heck, he doesn't do much better among the 46-65 group either.  He is in 4th place with 12% of the vote with them.  He also polls in 4th place with 14% of the female vote, behind Paul Ryan, Chris Christie and Jeb Bush.

While I would like to believe that Rand Paul can go all the way on the backs of the young, males and  very conservative people, I doubt it.  He needs to do some outreach and fast or else we will be stuck with either another Bush or Chris Christie as the nominee and I might not be able to take that.

Rand Paul reaches out to Orthodox Jews

A positive piece titled Rabbi Rand Paul in the National Review.  I'm glad at least the National Review hasn't followed Commentary down the anti-Rand Paul lunacy hole:

'We are very pleased to have Rabbi Rand Paul here," the senator's host, Richard Roberts, said as two dozen religious Jews sat down to lunch in Roberts's home in Lakewood, N.J.

"Senator, we have 6,500 men studying here," Roberts continued, referring to Lakewood's Beth Midrash Govoha, one of the largest rabbinical schools in the world. "Can you get me one or two Jews from Kentucky learning here?"

It was a sunny day in mid June and Paul had come to Lakewood, one of the nation's hubs of Orthodox Judaism, direct from Kentucky before returning to Washington, D.C. In the Orthodox community, Roberts, who last August sold his pharmaceutical company for $800 million, is a good friend to have. "If [Paul] has Dr. Roberts backing him, that is a great imprimatur for everybody in the community here," Rabbi Zisha Novoseller tells me. "These are movers and shakers in the audience here and he is looking for us to spread the gospel."

...

He says he's on a "speaking tour," taking the GOP message to new venues, and he faults Republicans for failing to do even a little of this. "Half of it is showing up" in minority communities, he told reporters on a May swing through Iowa, "and I don't think we've been showing up and asking."

His pitch isn't solely rhetorical, though. Paul has a legislative pitch tailored to minorities as well. He is planning to pursue legal action against the National Security Agency for what he considers a vast overreach of its surveillance powers and tells those assembled in Lakewood that "Jews should be very concerned about due process and liberty," and that "blacks should be too." In his remarks at Howard University, he railed against mandatory minimum sentencing for drug use, which many say disproportionately impacts African Americans and Hispanics. At times, he's gone further and argued that he doesn't believe people should be jailed for nonviolent drug crimes. "Look, the last two presidents could conceivably have been put in jail for their drug use," Paul told Fox News. "It would have ruined their lives. They got lucky. But a lot of poor kids, particularly in the inner city, don't get lucky."

Among the Orthodox in Lakewood, the senator has found a receptive audience. "I think that for politicians in general, certainly for higher office, including a president, the No. 1 thing we're looking for is integrity, somebody who's real," Roberts says. "He's real, he's authentic."

Rand Paul Seeks to End Aid to Egypt

Honestly, I'm a bit conflicted on this one.  I think it would be bad foreign policy to actually cut off aid to the relatively pro-western Egyptian military, especially when things are still so much in flux over there.  I would hate for us to send the wrong signal and end up with another Iran (I wrote a post on this here).  On the other hand, the law is the law and we really need to stop this arbitrary enforcement of laws that this administration is making a very bad habit of.  So I at least applaud Rand Paul for bringing that up:

Sen. Rand Paul today introduced legislation to prohibit the United States from sending foreign assistance to the government of Egypt, as a result of the country's military coup d'├ętat on July 3, 2013. Click HERE to read Sen. Paul's legislation in its entirety.

 This week, it was reported that the Obama Administration was moving forward with plans to deliver four F-16 fighter jets to Egypt despite the political unrest in the country. Earlier this year, the Senate voted against an amendment introduced by Sen. Paul that would have prohibited the U.S. government from selling F-16 military aircraft, M1 tanks, and similar military weapons to the Egyptian government.

 "Egypt is the latest example of the Obama Administration's misguided foreign policy," Sen. Paul said. "The overthrow of the Egyptian government was a coup d'├ętat, and the law is clear that when a coup takes place, foreign aid must stop. But, the President still plans to continue to send aid to Egypt, at a pace of more than $1.3 billion per year. By the President's refusal to call the situation in Egypt a 'coup' and continuing the flow of foreign assistance to Egypt, he is forthrightly saying 'I am ignoring the rule of law.'"

Rand Paul Stands by Jack Hunter

Good for him.  It's nice to see further confirmation that he is just another squishy Republican who runs from a fight:

"I'm not a fan of secession," Paul said. "I think the things he said about John Wilkes Booth are absolutely stupid. I think Lincoln was one of our greatest presidents. Do I think Lincoln was wrong is taking away the freedom of the press and the right of habeas corpus? Yeah.

"There were great people who were for emancipation. Lincoln came to his greatness. One Republican congressman described it as 'on borrowed plumage.' I love the description, because there were some great fighters [for emancipation] and Lincoln had to be pushed. But I'm not an enemy of Lincoln, like some who think he was an awful person."

Paul said that Hunter had never acted in a discriminatory way, and that his earlier work in South Carolina was a form of youthful political showmanship.

"People are calling him a white supremacist," Paul told me in his Senate office. "If I thought he was a white supremacist, he would be fired immediately. If I thought he would treat anybody on the color of their skin different that others, I'd fire him immediately.

"All I can say is, we have a zero tolerance policy for anybody who displays discriminatory behavior or belief in discriminating against people based on the color of their skin, their religion, their sexual orientation, anything like that," Paul told me. "We won't tolerate any of that, and I've seen no evidence of that.

"Are we at a point where nobody can have had a youth or said anything untoward?" the senator asked rhetorically.

...

"Let me put it this way," Paul said. "I'm aware of some of your columns, but not all of them. And some of them I find very unfair, calling me a conspiracy nut, things like that. But I chose to talk to you today. So that means we have a relationship now. But it doesn't mean that I agree with all of your past writings.

"It's the same way any time you meet somebody who's got a large body of work," Paul continued. "So if I hired you to work in my campaign, there would be some things I agreed with, and some things I disagreed with.

"I think it's hard. The thing is, I grapple with this. What am I supposed to do? I'm going to have a lot of people working for me. They've all got writings and opinions."

Hunter, he said, "is incredibly talented."

Behind the flashy and provocative rhetoric, Paul said, Hunter often made thought-provoking arguments. "Look and listen to the actual words and not to the headlines, people," Paul told me.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

The Jack Hunter Smear

I'm still flabbergasted by this Jack Hunter kerfuffle which I wrote about yesterday.  Alana Goodman, formerly of Commentary, wrote a hit piece yesterday in which she paints a picture of Jack Hunter as some sort of racist white supremacist who is currently employed by Rand Paul.  If she actually did her research and wasn't just trying to ruin a guy's career because she doesn't like his boss, she would know how wrong a picture that is.  Here is something he wrote after Obama was elected:

As a conservative I have little use for Obama's politics, but as an American and more specifically a Southerner, I think I can understand the excitement, particularly in the black community. Listening to urban radio this week, black nightclubs advertised Obama inauguration parties and drink specials. A black-themed clothing store in downtown Charleston advertised deals on suits for Obama's swearing in. It could be said these folks are just being smart capitalists, and they are, but I don't remember these businesses offering any Bush inauguration specials.

The first black American president likely represents many different things to many different black Americans. But much of the joy I see in my black neighbors and friends, seems to be a sense that a new level of respect, perhaps the greatest respect, has now been paid to them by their nation.

Oh boy, what a monster right?  So what if he hates Abraham Lincoln?  There are many legitimate reasons to.  Or is being an actual iconoclast not allowed nowadays?  

I used to be a fan of Commentary and the folks who write for it (Alana Goodman wrote for it and is clearly still close with the people there and the alums like Jen Rubin).  But I've noticed that they have focused a bit too much energy in destroying Republicans they don't like lately.  Also, they've become really petty. Today, after making a comment about Alana Goodman and what she was trying to do Jack Hunter, I got called an ass by John Podhoretz (editor of Commentary) and then not only unfollowed but blocked as well.  Never at any time did I insult him or anything.  How disappointing.  

These people are really making me regret my libertarian neocon moniker.  

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

If They Can't Defeat Rand Paul on Ideas They Try to Defeat Him through Guilt by Association

Today in the Free Beacon is an article by Alana Goodman (formerly of the knee jerk anti-Rand Paul crew at Commentary) on Jack Hunter, who helped Rand Paul write his 2011 book "The Tea Party Goes to Washington" and apparently runs his Twitter feed.  It's basically a "gotcha" type article that attempts to smear Rand Paul with the past of one of his employees.  Hunter's crime?  Being in the League of the South, a nonviolent southern nationalist organization 15 years ago and not liking Abraham Lincoln very much.  Oh the horror.  

Now, I'm not saying that I would ever go to a League of the South meeting with my Super Jew shirt on or anything but it seems to me that if Obama can cavort with the likes of Reverend Wright, Louis Farrakhan and Bill Ayers for years then how does it make sense to attack Rand Paul for the prior associations of his Twitter feed writer?  Besides Jack Hunter has already renounced his views and seems pretty sensitive these days as you can see from his article on gay marriage and the civil rights struggle written back in April:

The 20-something me would consider the 30-something me a bleeding-heart liberal. Though I still hate political correctness, I no longer find it valuable to attack PC by charging off in the opposite direction, making insensitive remarks that even if right in fact were so wrong in form. I'm not the first political pundit to use excessive hyperbole. I might be one of the few to admit being embarrassed about it.

This embarrassment is particularly true concerning my own region, the South, where slavery, segregation, and institutional racism left a heavy mark. I still detest those on the left and right who exploit racial tension for their own purposes. But I detest even more the inhumanity suffered by African-Americans in our early and later history. T.S. Eliot said, "humankind cannot bear too much reality," and it is impossible for those of us living in the new millennium to comprehend that absolute horror of being treated like chattel by your fellow man, or being terrorized by your neighbors, because of the color of your skin.

Books, memorials, and museums will never be able to adequately convey such tragedy, at least not in any manner remotely comparable to the pain of those who lived it.

...

There have been instances during the gay-rights movement that arguably could be compared to the black civil rights struggle, like the Stonewall riots of the 1960s or Matthew Shepard murder in 1998. Suicides and other problems related to public attitudes about homosexuality have also unquestionably been a horrible ordeal. Still, with the possible exception of the mistreatment of Native Americans, there has been nothing quite like the systematic exploitation and institutional degradation experienced by earlier black Americans.

My purpose here is not to belittle the fight for gay marriage, only to note that those who keep attempting to draw a reasonable comparison to the struggle of African-Americans are in many ways belittling the black experience in the United States.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Rand Paul on the Egyptian Coup

From his July 4th Op-Ed in the Washington Times:

In Egypt, protest is met with tear gas, manufactured in America and paid for with American taxes. When Egyptians protest, they protest against their government and also America for subsidizing that government.

Despite the fact that Mohamed Morsi recently convicted 16 Americans of political crimes in a show trial, the Obama administration still sent them over $2 billion this year.

American tax dollars flow no matter which despot rules.

Hosni Mubarak brutally suppressed protest over three decades of martial law. Yet, we sent him some $60 billion, much of which was stolen by Mr. Mubarak and his family.

Mr. Mubarak abused his citizens and his own power, yet we gave him billions of dollars and advanced weaponry, including F-16 jets. Mr. Mubarak would eventually use those jets to intimidate the protesters who would eventually end his regime.

Today, we give the same billions and fighter jets to Mr. Mubarak's successor, Mr. Morsi, who the protesters now see in the same light as Mr. Mubarak.

But worse, due to our aid and support, Egyptians see Mr. Morsi and America as the same.

Some American politicians never know when to say no. Three prominent interventionists called for arming Moammar Gadhafi the year before they called for arming the Libyan Islamists rebels who overthrew Gadhafi. Which Islamic rebels killed the American ambassador? No one seems to know and no one has been brought to justice. Often, today's "rebels" can become tomorrow's tyrants, and vice versa.

Persistent and perpetual intervention inevitably leads to American dollars flowing to despots.

How does it look to the world when we celebrate independence and freedom in our own country while aiding and abetting dictators and despots who deny liberty to their own people?

Now, Mr. Morsi has been ousted due to massive protests — and we subsidized his government the entire time he was in power.

In all likelihood, we will continue to finance the military junta that replaces him.

Why? To what end?

People must fight for their own freedom. We fought for it in our own country, even as we see today's government so often betraying the Founders' vision. We see people fighting for freedom in other countries, even as US interventions work to stifle their efforts.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Rand must balance Ron?

Reporters certainly have a herd-like mentality.  Recently, the story they are running with is that Rand Paul has to make it clear to mainstream Republicans that he is not his dad and that he needs to make clear to libertarians that he is close enough to his dad to vote for.  Two very recent examples are this article in the Daily Beast and this one on Real Clear Politics.  I know with a military coup brewing in Egypt, a civil war in Syria, IRS-gate, NSA-gate and Benghazi-gate, reporters are having a tough time finding real news to write about but I think if they tried they could find something.

I don't remember Barack Obama having even a single question about his drunk-driving, wife-beating, bigamist of a father.  So why the incessant harping on the Rand/Ron relationship?  I even don't remember so much being written about George H.W. Bush vs. George W. Bush.  Of course maybe that was because George H.W. Bush didn't really have a movement of people behind him as he had the personality of a guidance counselor.  

Anyway, I think it's pretty obvious what is going to happen with Ron Paul supporters and Rand Paul.  70% of them will go with Rand, especially those at the top of the movement.  If Rand wins, they have a real chance of getting into a position of power, something they never really even dreamed would ever happen.  Some of the rank and file who have unrealistic expectations and also believe that Jews and Freemasons run the world for Lucifer, might not, but who cares.  If Rand Paul can appeal to social conservatives as well as tea partiers, it doesn't matter.  Also, I think most libertarians realize that if Rand Paul is elected President, he would be the most libertarian President since at least Calvin Coolidge or Grover Cleveland and that is definitely something to strive for.  Now that Ron is not running, who exactly is their other choice?  Their really isn't one, especially not for the nitpicking set.  Heck, they probably wouldn't even go for Ted Cruz (who isn't as libertarian as Rand Paul) simply because they would be too bothered about whether or not he would be considered a "natural born citizen" under English Common Law.