Ron Paul and His Anti-Appeal

He has drawn in the young with his passionate objections to wars and bailouts. Our observer says it would be a pity to see the race end within the next couple of primaries.


So much fun.

So little time.

Mitt Romney may effectively capture the Republican nomination by the end of January—with probable wins in both South Carolina and Florida—closing off the fascinating slugfest of GOP debates and primaries.

A pity. So much more could happen.

Ron Paul is just reaching his stride and energizing the “other base” of the Republican Party—not the angry, imploding Newt Gingrich. Not the pumped-up Rick Santorum. Not the Democratic fill-in, Jon Huntsman, and not even the Tea Party.

Paul is going the distance because of the passion of young, anti-war, anti-bailout, anti-Fed, anti-government, anti-globalist voters. And, if current events keep turning in his direction, Paul may just turn the Republicans, if not the country, around.

Look at the FoxNews.com exit polls from New Hampshire here. Paul trounces Romney among the young.

Watch the faces and the fist-pumping in the crowd of these young true believers who flock to his “liberty” cry.

And listen to Paul’s speech after placing second to Romney. No teleprompter, no notes, just defiance, conviction and passion for his cause.

Paul has tapped into the rage of many Americans, but especially Republicans, Libertarians and independents who rail against the Federal Reserve (“audit it”); against the bank bailouts (“let them fail”); and against the war on drugs (“it has failed”).

But pay closer attention to his “get out of these wars of choice” message.

This is Paul’s secret weapon—“peace,” the word that became unfashionable after George McGovern’s landslide loss to Richard Nixon during the bedlam and backlash against the Vietnam War.

Paul has re-framed the anti-war debate using accounting, wrecking-ball phases and unanswerable questions to drive his points home.

Why can’t these countries defend themselves?

Why is the U.S. the “policeman of the world?”

Why should the U.S. make the world “safe for democracy” while taking it away at home? 

Read: the Patriot Act; the latest National Defense Authorization Act (that arguably allows for arrest and indefinite detention of American citizens on American soil, without benefit of counsel or trial); the Internet “kill switch;” grumbles about the TSA and the overreach and/or incompetence of Homeland Security, from the “Fast and Furious” scandal to the latest Washington Post report that U.S. agents laundered money for drug cartels.

The price Americans are paying is too high, Paul argues. Not just in the costs of the wars (trillions) or the loss of lives (thousands of Americans, tens of thousands of “enemy combatants” and “collateral damage” civilians, but also in the loss of liberty.

Paul has given voice to a growing undercurrent of dissatisfaction in the country among voters of all persuasions: the never-ending wars.

As Gingrich and Santorum bang the drums for more war—with Iran (pre-emptive if necessary)—they flail and fail in the polls.

Gingrich, now more Sherman-esque than Churchill-like, is seeking revenge against Romney—at any cost.

Gingrich wraps himself in the Ronald Reagan legacy, while simultaneously violating Reagan’s 11thcommandment, “Thou shalt not speak ill of any fellow Republican.” The former speaker’s sole reason for existence now appears to be “destroy Romney.”

Meanwhile, Romney marches along, picking up delegates and endorsements, including a fistful of former U.S. ambassadors to the Vatican, while Paul tackles and pins the rest of the field on their hypocrisy.

Paul’s most withering remark was calling Gingrich a “chicken-hawk” for receiving five deferments during the Vietnam War. Paul served as a flight surgeon.

When Gingrich tried to counter with his trademark “professorial snide” putdown by saying that he was “prevented” from serving because he was married with one child, Paul stared angrily into the face of the New Hampshire debate cameras and responded, “I was married with two children and I went.”

Another bunch of ongoing wars, plus another flare-up threatening to escalate from bravura to bombs—in Iran—has Paul’s rallying point on the cusp of replacing James Carville’s legendary mantra, “It’s the economy, stupid.”

Paul’s dire warning may become 2012’s latest bumper sticker: “It’s the wars, stupid.”


Colleen O'Connor, a former college history professor, contributes political columns to Patch.

Frodo January 13, 2012 at 03:19 PM
Dear Professor O'Connor, I enjoyed reading your column this morning on why people are attracted to Ron Paul's peace platform. As a long time libertarian and one who has opposed our country's fascination with maintaing a world empire, it does my heart good to see Ron Paul's messages about liberty and peace inspire so many, both here and abroad. I suspect that you may have severe disagreements with parts of Dr. Paul's political philosophy but perhaps on the most important question of our day, the question of war or peace, you two may share the same opinions. In any case, thanks for your kind words about his ideas.
jjesse christie January 13, 2012 at 04:08 PM
Unelected officials have taken over Washington and are orchestrating the daily news. 99% of the comments and replies you're reading online come from an NSA software program spamming the internet. Comments are created before the stories are ever reported. The oldest, first, highest, best, and most popular rated comments are all propaganda. They are conducting Psy-ops (psychological operations) for domestic spying. They have 1000's of handles and are determined to bury the truth and attack anyone leaking it. The next election is shaping up to be as big of a sham as the last. Do you know why Sarah Palin's bus tour was really canceled? Do you know why she stayed 30 miles away from the second debate and chose the death of Steve Jobs to announce that she's not running? Know what leaked out? Sarah Palin and Cain aren't in the race for the same reason, the truth leaked out. http://PalinsDirtyLittleSecret.blogspot.com
Elle Stanion January 13, 2012 at 04:15 PM
See Also Ron Paul in...Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Bank?: An Uncensored Investigation of the US Federal Reserve Banking Cartel--one of the most controversial institutions of our time...(Self-Serving its Country Since 1913)... http://www.youtube.com/user/BaitAndSwitchTV?feature=mhee#p/u/12/_M_Rh_fgKEQ
Kim Moreno January 13, 2012 at 04:18 PM
It is becoming increasingly evident that Paul can only be a third party candidate. that having been said, he has and will continue to gain a strong grassroots volunteer force that may have the strength and savvy to get on the ballot in 50 states. His third party candidacy will probably draw equally from both Obama and GOPWhoever. Had Ross Perot and Coronado's Adm. Stockdale and their Reform Party survived the GOP/Dem smear campaign in 1992, we might be looking at a healthier nation and World right now.....


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