Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Ron Paul’s Ugly Newsletters

Ron Paul's Ugly Newsletters

his piece by David Boaz is reprinted from Cato-at-Liberty.org. In our view Cato is a legitimate libertarian organization. This, of course, means that the Ron Paul allies, especially those associated with the editor of Ron's racist newsletters, Lew Rockwell, spend a lot of time smearing Cato and attacking them, usually by inventing claims about positions they didn't take.

For the past few months most libertarians have been pleased to see Ron Paul achieving unexpected success with his presidential campaign’s message of ending the Iraq war, abolishing the federal income tax, establishing sound money, and restoring the Constitution. Sure, some of us didn’t like his talk about closing the borders and his conspiratorial view of a North-South highway. But the main themes of his campaign, the ones that generated the multi-million-dollar online fundraising spectaculars and the youthful “Ron Paul Revolution,” were classic libertarian issues. It was particularly gratifying to see a presidential candidate tie the antiwar position to a belief in a strictly limited federal government.

And so it’s understandable that over the past few months a lot of people have been asking why writers at the Cato Institute seemed to display a lack of interest in or enthusiasm for the Paul campaign. Well, now you know. We had never seen the newsletters that have recently come to light, and I for one was surprised at just how vile they turned out to be. But we knew the company Ron Paul had been keeping, and we feared that they would have tied him to some reprehensible ideas far from the principles we hold.

Ron Paul says he didn’t write these newsletters, and I take him at his word. They don’t sound like him. In my infrequent personal encounters and in his public appearances, I’ve never heard him say anything racist or homophobic (halting and uncomfortable on gay issues, like a lot of 72-year-old conservatives, but not hateful). But he selected the people who did write those things, and he put his name on the otherwise unsigned newsletters, and he raised campaign funds from the mailing list that those newsletters created. And he would have us believe that things that “do not represent what I believe or have ever believed” appeared in his newsletter for years and years without his knowledge. Assuming Ron Paul in fact did not write those letters, people close to him did. His associates conceived, wrote, edited, and mailed those words. His closest associates over many years know who created those publications. If they truly admire Ron Paul, if they think he is being unfairly tarnished with words he did not write, they should come forward, take responsibility for their words, and explain how they kept Ron Paul in the dark for years about the words that appeared every month in newsletters with “Ron Paul” in the title.

Paul says he didn’t write the letters, that he denounces the words that appeared in them, that he was unaware for decades of what 100,000 people were receiving every month from him. That’s an odd claim on which to run for president: I didn’t know what my closest associates were doing over my signature, so give me responsibility for the federal government.

But of course Ron Paul isn’t running for president. He’s not going to be president, he’s not going to be the Republican nominee for president, and he never hoped to be. He got into the race to advance ideas—the ideas of peace, constitutional government, and freedom. Succeeding beyond his wildest dreams, he became the most visible so-called “libertarian” in America. And now he and his associates have slimed the noble cause of liberty and limited government.

Mutterings about the past mistakes of the New Republic or the ideological agenda of author James Kirchick are beside the point. Maybe Bob Woodward didn’t like Quakers; the corruption he uncovered in the Nixon administration was still a fact, and that’s all that mattered. Ron Paul’s most visible defenders have denounced Kirchick as a “pimply-faced youth”—so much for their previous enthusiasm about all the young people sleeping on floors for the Paul campaign—and a neoconservative. But they have not denied the facts he reported. Those words appeared in newsletters under his name. And, notably, they have not dared to defend or even quote the actual words that Kirchick reported. Even those who vociferously defend Ron Paul and viciously denounce Kirchick, perhaps even those who wrote the words originally, are apparently unwilling to quote and defend the actual words that appeared over Ron Paul’s signature.

Those words are not libertarian words. Maybe they reflect “paleoconservative” ideas, though they’re not the language of Burke or even Kirk. But libertarianism is a philosophy of individualism, tolerance, and liberty. As Ayn Rand wrote, “Racism is the lowest, most crudely primitive form of collectivism.” Making sweeping, bigoted claims about all blacks, all homosexuals, or any other group is indeed a crudely primitive collectivism.

Libertarians should make it clear that the people who wrote those things are not our comrades, not part of our movement, not part of the tradition of John Locke, Adam Smith, John Stuart Mill, William Lloyd Garrison, Frederick Douglass, Ludwig von Mises, F. A. Hayek, Ayn Rand, Milton Friedman, and Robert Nozick. Shame on them.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

White Supremacists Rallying Around Ron Paul’s Presidential Campaign

White Supremacists Rallying Around Ron Paul's Presidential Campaign

The following is reprinted from The Michigan Messenger and is by Todd A. Heywood. The interesting aspect here is that numerous white supremacists are rallying around Paul. One would think they do believe that Ron Paul, wrote or approved, the racist articles that his newsletter published. They consider him one of their own.

Republican presidential hopeful Ron Paul, whose long-shot campaign has been gaining media attention in recent days, apparently has the support of an unusual constituency — the white supremacist movement.

Stormfront.org, a white supremacy web site, as well as others, such as WhiteWorldNews.com, have actively supported Paul’s bid for the presidency, including directing donors to his campaign. Stormfront has also endorsed Paul for president.

“Once in a great while a presidential candidate is presented to us. A candidate who not only speaks to us, but for us…I am supporting Ron Paul in his run for the presidency,” the Stormfront endorsement says. The endorsement praises Paul’s plans to reduce taxes, close the borders and eliminate trade deals, such as NAFTA.

“Whatever organization you belong to, remember first and foremost that you are a white nationalist,” the endorsement continues. “Put your differences with one and other aside and work together. Work together to strive to get someone in the Oval Office who agrees with much of what we want for our future. Look at the man. Look at the issues. Look at our future. Vote for Ron Paul 2008.”

The white supremacy movement directs potential donors to the independent ThisNovember5th.com web site, which is a fundraising mechanism for the Paul campaign. The web site netted Paul $4.2 million from some 37,000 people on Nov. 5 — a record amount raised in a single day through the Internet by any Republican candidate.

Continued -The Paul Campaign on Thursday announced it had refunded $3,000 of the millions of dollars it had received Nov. 5. The money was donated on stolen credit cards, in sums of $5 per card. There was no indication, however, that white supremacists were involved in the stolen-card donations.

ThisNovember5th.com was created in memory of Guy Fawkes’ failed Gunpowder Plot in England in 1608. Fawkes planned to blow up Parliament and kill King James I to restore the Catholic Church in Protestant England. Paul supporters used the web site and Guy Fawke’s Day to support “Ron Paul’s Revolution.”

Jesse Benton, communications director for Ron Paul for President 2008, said he was unaware of the existence of Stormfront until just a few days ago, though Stormfront radio endorsed Paul in mid-October.

As for what the campaign will do with the supremacist donations, Benton said white supremacists are wasting their money on Paul, a physician and long-time congressman from Texas. “We are not in the business of trying to track who is giving us money,” Benton said. “If they want to waste their money on us we will take it and use it to promote freedom and individual rights, not their agenda.”

There is no indication that Paul has courted right-wing support. But a wide array of white supremacist and neo-Nazi groups have backed him nonetheless, and there have been rumors about right-wing support in the blogosphere for months.

On Oct. 4 Will Williams, a former leader of the National Alliance, a neo-Nazi group, posted on the neo-Nazi Vanguard News Network that white supremacy supporters should support Paul for president.

“Till then I recommend folks get involved in the Ron Paul ‘revolution’ and work with political activists in your communities who are attracted to his anti-globalist message,” Williams wrote. “Be disciplined. Blend in; find common ground with them and artfully radicalize those who are receptive and avoid those who are not. … Most of you would be surprised at how many good people can be exposed to a, let’s say, ‘pro-majority’ message among the remarkable groundswell of fed-up, mostly white Ron Paul supporters — many, early on, from the 9/11 truth movement. They are finding their backbones as they are exposed to more and more hidden truths, especially about the hidden hand of Jewry behind every foul venture.”

In addition to his white supremacist activities, Williams is the organizer of the Upper East Tennessee Volunteers for Ron Paul. Williams also worked on conservative Republican Pat Buchanan’s presidential campaign in 2000.

Besides the endorsement from Stormfront.org, its founder, Don Black, donated $500 to the Paul campaign, according to Federal Elections Commission filings. The Lonestartimes.com has the full background on Black’s donation. Stormfront also has a dedicated thread, “The Ron Paul Revolution.”

The Ron Paul meetup.com, which has more than 42,000 Paul supporters on it, also has several well-known white supremacists declaring their support for Paul. Michael Mazzone, the Chicago leader of the white supremacist Church of the Creator — whose motto is “RAHOWA,” or Racial Holy War — is listed as a supporter, as is neo-Nazi Nationalist Coalition member John Ubele.

On the Vanguard News Network , convicted bomber and neo-Nazi Todd Vanbiber posted his support for Paul, saying “I think I’m going to get in touch with the local Paul people and see if I can help. I am serious about this shit.”; Vanbiber was convicted and spent 5 years in a Florida prison for planning to bomb over a dozen Orlando locations.

The Vanguard News Network, Stormfront.org, neo-Nazi Nationalist Coalition, the Church of the Creator and the National Alliance have all been listed as or linked to white supremacy and hate groups by the Southern Poverty Law Center. The center is the nation’s leading authority on hate groups in the United States and it publishes a hate group map annually.The 2006 hate group map can be found here..

The Houston Chronicle documented Paul as having written some questionable materials himself. In his 1992 independent political newsletter, Paul reported on a survey of blacks. He has refused to provide the survey to anyone. His comments include:

"Opinion polls show that only about 5 percent of blacks have sensible political opinions, i.e. support the free market, individual liberty and the end of welfare and affirmative action."
"Give the inefficiencies of what DC laughingly calls the 'criminal justice system,' I think we can safely assume that 95 percent of black males in that city are semi-criminal or entirely criminal.'
"We are constantly told it is evil to afraid of black men, it is hardly irrational. Black men commit murders, rapes, robberies, muggings and burglaries all out of proportion to their numbers."
"We don't think a child of 13 should be held responsible as a man of 23. That's true for most people, but black males who have raised and who have joined criminal gangs, are as big, strong, tough, scary and culpable as any adult and should be treated as such."

Earlier this year Paul addressed a gathering of the Robert A. Taft Club in Arlington, Va. The club is run by Marcus Epstein, executive director of the conservative Team America PAC, or political action committee. Marcus Epstein, executive director of the conservative Team America PAC, or political action committee, also writes for the anti-immigration site vdare.com, which the Southern Poverty Law Center has labeled a hate site, and is a regular writer for the white supremacy journal American Renaissance. The Law Center said it was not clear if Paul knew of Epstein’s supremacist ties.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Ron Paul's Racist Writings: Did He Actually Write Them?

Ron Paul's Racist Writings: Did He Actually Write Them?

The following article by Glenn Contrarian is not from a libertarian perspective but he does a decent job of showing how what Ron Paul has claimed, regarding the racist articles he published, has changed over the years. Ron's current story is that he didn't write them and he didn't know who did. But in past years he said he did write them.

Ron Paul can do no wrong. At least, that's what I'm seeing in the replies to other Blogcritics articles. There are some who are absolutely sure that Ron Paul had nothing whatsoever to do with those racist newsletters (photocopies here; they're very interesting reading). So let's first examine the known facts, the possibilities, and then let's examine the proof. For all those who are absolutely sure that Ron Paul is completely innocent, at least do yourselves the favor of reading this whole article before replying. The known facts:

1 - Ron Paul's newsletters came out under at least three different names, but have been published mostly on a monthly basis since 1978.

2 - The racist newsletter articles in question were written over a five-year period, from 1989 to 1994.

The possibilities:

1 - Ron Paul wrote the articles in Ron Paul's newsletter.

2 - A ghostwriter for Ron Paul wrote the articles in Ron Paul's newsletter (and Ron Paul either knew or did not know about what the ghostwriter wrote).

3 - Ron Paul was in no way associated with Ron Paul's newsletter and couldn't have written the articles.

In a 2008 interview with CNN, Mr. Paul flatly denied writing those articles in his newsletter, he denied knowing who wrote them, and CNN was told by a Paul spokesman that the Paul campaign would not try to find out who wrote them.

In a 2001 interview with Texas Monthly, Ron Paul stated that his campaign staff told him that "it would have been too confusing" to come right out and say that he didn't write any of those articles.

The proof:

So far it all looks rather harmless, if confusingly so, right? But the Libertarian site reason.com points out what was published in 1996:

The Dallas Morning News:

Dr. Paul denied suggestions that he was a racist and said he was not evoking stereotypes when he wrote the columns. He said they should be read and quoted in their entirety to avoid misrepresentation...In the interview, he did not deny he made the statement about the swiftness of black men. "If you try to catch someone that has stolen a purse from you, there is no chance to catch them," Dr. Paul said. He also said the comment about black men in the nation's capital was made while writing about a 1992 study produced by the National Center on Incarceration and Alternatives, a criminal justice think tank based in Virginia.

The Houston Chronicle:

Paul, a Republican obstetrician from Surfside, said Wednesday he opposes racism and that his written commentaries about blacks came in the context of "current events and statistical reports of the time."...Paul also wrote that although "we are constantly told that it is evil to be afraid of black men, it is hardly irrational. Black men commit murders, rapes, robberies, muggings and burglaries all out of proportion to their numbers." A campaign spokesman for Paul said statements about the fear of black males mirror pronouncements by black leaders such as the Rev. Jesse Jackson, who has decried the spread of urban crime.

The Austin American-Statesman:

"Dr. Paul is being quoted out of context," [Paul spokesman Michael] Sullivan said. "It's like picking up War and Peace and reading the fourth paragraph on Page 481 and thinking you can understand what's going on."... Also in 1992, Paul wrote, "Opinion polls consistently show that only about 5 percent of blacks have sensible political opinions." Sullivan said Paul does not consider people who disagree with him to be sensible. And most blacks, Sullivan said, do not share Paul's views. The issue is political philosophy, not race, Sullivan said. "Polls show that only about 5 percent of people with dark-colored skin support the free market, a laissez faire economy, an end to welfare and to affirmative action," Sullivan said.

The Washington Post:

Paul, an obstetrician from Surfside, Tex., denied he is a racist and charged Austin lawyer Charles "Lefty" Morris, his Democratic opponent, with taking his 1992 writings out of context. "Instead of talking about the issues, our opponent has chosen to lie and try to deceive the people of the 14th District," said Paul spokesman Michael Sullivan, who added that the excerpts were written during the Los Angeles riots when "Jesse Jackson was making the same comments."

Roll Call:

In a statement, Paul said he had "labored to conduct a campaign based upon the issues that are vital to our nation" and charged Morris with "repeated attempts...to reduce the campaign to name calling and race-baiting." He called Morris's request that he release all back issues of the newsletter "not only impractical, but...equivalent to asking him to provide documents for every lawsuit he has been involved in during his lengthy legal career." Of his statements about Jordan, Paul said that "such opinions represented our clear philosophical difference. The causes she so strongly advocated were for more government, more and more regulations, and more and more taxes. My cause has been almost exactly the opposite, and I believe her positions to have been fundamentally wrong: I've fought for less and less intrusive government, fewer regulations, and lower taxes."

When Ron Paul was asked by several newspapers about the racist newsletter articles in 1996, he did not deny writing them, and it's quite apparent that his staff thought he wrote them, too.

So it boils down to this: either Ron Paul had no idea what was being written in his newsletter over a five-year period, and when he was asked about it by the newspapers, he chose not to deny that he wrote them and deliberately allowed his staff to believe that he wrote them, or Ron Paul wrote those articles in his newsletter and then later realized that by exposing his own racism, he might well cost himself any real chance at the White House.

Lastly, I'd like to refer Ron Paul supporters to a real liberatarian, Dave Nalle, head of the Republican Liberty Caucus, who had this to say about Ron Paul:

[Ron Paul is] an inflexible ideologue who subscribes to a variety of extremist views which would make a terrible basis for national policy. His interpretation of the Constitution is highly selective. He seems not to recognize terms like "public welfare" and "common good" and rejects the long history of constitutional scholarship and jurisprudence on which most law is based. His understanding of the economy is based on fringe economic theories which most serious economists do not consider credible. As for foreign policy, it's an area in which Paul has no experience at all and his foreign policy would basically amount to isolationism which would have disastrous economic and political repercussions.

[Ron Paul supporters] completely overlook Paul's support for the reactionary conspiracy nuts at the John Birch Society and the reprehensible 9/11 Truth movement or the fact that he raises money on white supremacist websites and has the endorsement of racist leaders like former KKK Grand Wizard David Duke, White Aryan leader Tom Metzger and Stormfront Fuhrer Don Black.

I should note here that I owe Dave Nalle an apology: I accused him repeatedly of being a Ron Paul supporter, and I was obviously wrong. That said, Mr. Nalle and I agree on very little, but we're apparently in complete agreement that a Ron Paul presidency would be a very, very bad thing for America, and that if Ron Paul's not a racist, he's certainly doing his level best to make us think that he is!

Ron Paul: Thunder on the Right

Ron Paul: Thunder on the Right

The following was published by the Libertarian Republican Organizing Committee when Ron Paul was seeking the Libertarian Party nomination. While the alleged author of this piece, it was published anonymously, is now closely allied to Lew Rockwell and is now promoting his own conspiracy theories and dabbling in the very politics he damned here, his original dissection of Ron's extremist views are still worth reading. Note this was converted from a scanned file and some ORC recognition problems may have slipped by us. If you see any mention them in the comments and we will fix them. Otherwise this is an accurate reprint of what LROC claimed at the time.

Reading Alan Crawford's Thunder on the Right: The New Right and the Politics of Resentment, some years ago, we remember being fascinated by the book, but puzzled by its organization. For Crawford coupled his analysis of the John Birch Society, the epitome of all that is authoritarian in the American Right, with a discussion of the libertarian movement. "The Birchites and libertarians," wrote Crawford, "though often at war, represent the tradition of 'entrepreneurial radicalism' (as Richard Hofstader had described the rugged individualist tradition), but the Birchites represent as well a backlash against the 'hot-tub' morality of Hollywood and its 'laid-back' lifestyles."

Highlighting the fact that California's Orange County is a hotbed of both Birchism and libertarianism, Crawford makes his point in the title of the chapter, "The New Old West." "While the libertarians detest and fear the New Right, and find the John Birch Society somewhat comical (a disdain which is returned), there are striking similarities between the two groups. Both the Birchers and the libertarians, so characteristic of the attitudes of the New Old West, are deeply suspicious of... politics in general. ... Both groups are individualist to the bitter end, yearning to get the federal agencies off their backs, the United States out of the U.N., and Uncle Sam's hand out of their pockets and away from their gun holsters."

With this we could not agree. It was, after all, the spring of 1980, and the Libertarian Party seemed to be living up to the vision of a movement that was truly "beyond left and right," as the party theoreticians claimed. Under the tutelage of the Cato Institute, the LP had just run Ed Clark for governor of California, an effort that featured radio ads simultaneously praising Howard Jarvis's tax­cutting Proposition 13 and condemning State Senator John Briggs' Prop. 6, which would have banned all gay teachers from the public schools. Back in those heady days, when Clark's gubernatorial campaign garnered a respectable 5% of the vote and the LP was in its heyday, such an ideological confluence as Crawford suggested seemed utterly fantastic.

Re-reading this chapter of Thunder on the Right seven years later, Crawford's thesis seems uncannily accurate. Today the leading candidate for the LP presidential nomination is Ron Paul, an ex-Republican congressman from Texas, whose farewell speech to the House, delivered on September 19, 1984, is the perfect expression of the Birchite influence on our movement, replete with Welchian references to a conspiracy of "internationalists" intent on destroying America's sovereignty.

The Trilateralists are Coming

"Our problems," says Paul, "have become international in scope due to the nature of the political system and our policies. This need not be, but it is. The financial problems of the Nation, although clearly linked to our deficits and domestic monetary policy, cannot be separated from the international schemes of banking as promoted by the IMF, the World Bank and the Development Banks. It is much clearer to me now, having been in Washington for 7 years, how our banking and monetary policies are closely linked to our foreign policy and controlled by men not motivated to protect the sovereignty of America nor the liberties of our citizens."

This talk: of the "elite"—a word which, Paul uses interchangeably with "the international bankers" and "the internationalists"—runs like a leitmotif throughout the speech. Attacking conservative advocates of massive military spending, Paul scolds them for being naive. "This only serves the inflationists, the internationalists, the banking elite..."

Who are these mysterious, sinister internationalists? Paul is vague on this point. Although he never uses the word "insiders," there is more than a hint of conspiracy in the air. Describing Congress as the captive of special interests, he says: "The errand boy mentality is ordinary-the defender of liberty is seen as bizarre. The elite few who control our money, or foreign policy, and the international banking institutions, in a system designed to keep the welfare rich in diamonds and Mercedes, make the debates on the House and Senate floors nearly meaningless."

If this particular defender of liberty was seen by his colleagues in the House as bizarre, then perhaps it was due to the striking similarity between Paul's rhetoric and that of that other lone nut in the House of Representatives, the late Larry McDonald. A leader of the John Birch Society, McDonald was an anomaly within his own party, a nominal Democrat who denounced both major parties as "dominated by the same forces, internationalist forces that are downplaying national sovereignty" and the Constitution in favor of "international concepts." Like Paul, he sees "internationalism" as the main danger to American liberty; unlike Paul, he was not vague as to the exact identity of the internationalist cabal. "The key leadership in the Council on Foreign Relations, the Trilateral Commission and the Bilderbergers ... the American liberal internationalist establishment [are promoting] international sellout." (Thunder on the Right, p. 135.)

This talk: of the "elite"-a word which, Paul uses interchangeably with "the international bankers" and "the internationalists"—runs like a leitmotif throughout the speech. Attacking conservative advocates of massive military spending, Paul scolds them for being naive. "This only serves the inflationists, the internationalists, the banking elite ... " Who are these mysterious, sinister internationalists? Paul is vague on this point. Although he never uses the word "insiders," there is more than a hint of conspiracy in the air. Describing Congress as the captive of special interests, he says: "The errand boy mentality is ordinary-the defender of liberty is seen as bizarre. The elite few who control our money, or foreign policy, and the international banking institutions, in a system designed to keep the welfare rich in diamonds and Mercedes, make the debates on the House and Senate floors nearly meaningless." Paul's fixation on the evil international bankers—an obsession shared by Lyndon LaRouche and other less savory characters—is echoed in Alan Stang's JBS pamphlet It's Time Expose the Conspiracy. Like Paul, Stang sees the IMF at the center of an internationalist conspiracy. Discussing the IMF’s 1979 rescue operation, which shored up a sinking dollar, Stang quotes right-wing economist Jeremiah Novak's study of "Trilateralism": "The problem with this program is that the IMF would then have the same power over the U.S. as it does over most other nations. The difference is that the U.S. no longer controls the IMF, for Europe and Japan have as much power as does the U.S., and their power is increasing. The IMF will be able, therefore, to dictate to the U.S .... " Then comes the punch line:

"The man who supervised creation of the International Monetary Fund at the close of World War II," says Stang, "was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury Harry Dexter White, who was later exposed as a Soviet spy."

The specter of a grand conspiracy, a world in which both sides are puppets in the hands of master puppeteers, is the dominant theme of the American ultra-right. It colors—and, I would contend, distorts—their analysis of every issue, from economics to foreign policy. Attacking the conservative hawk who supposedly "appeases and subsidizes the Communists, and never starts the war," and the liberal dove, "the one more likely to involve us in a war to protect democracy," Paul says: "Is this a mere coincidence or is it contrived by those dedicated to internationalism?"

The right-wing myth that U.S. foreign policy failures are due to treason in high places, that America wasn't allowed to win the war in Vietnam because we were stabbed in the back by weak-kneed liberals, is echoed in Paul's farewell address:

"Praising the greatness of the Vietnam veterans and honoring them can never remove the truth of our failed policy that took us there. Resurrecting heroes will never erase the pain and suffering of an interventionist foreign policy that prompted unnecessary military activities and a no-win strategy" [emphasis added]. No doubt the villains are the all­ powerful international bankers who, according to Paul, control U.S. foreign policy and "are not motivated to protect the sovereignty of America."

This standard right-wing revisionist history is expanded on by Stang, who traces the pattern of betrayal all the way back to the Korean War. "The traitors did the same thing in Vietnam. How many times must this happen before we get the point? Again we entered the war under the auspices of the United Nations, through our membership in the South East Asian Treaty Organization, a U.N. subsidiary. Again we couldn't win it because our own C.F.R. leaders wouldn't let us. " According to Stang—and Ron Paul—the reason Vietnam was a bad war was because we didn't win.

Whatever their superficial differences, Paul and the Birchers share the same crankish mind set. Although they may argue as to the exact identity of the conspirators—whether they refer to the Trilateral Commission, the CFR, "international bankers," the Bilderbergers, or (a LaRouche favorite) the Queen of England—the shared vocabulary of the nutty Right is the rhetoric of conspiracy.

This hyperbolic fantasy world, the shared worldview of the Birchite Right, is always presented in a tone of the utmost urgency. The rhetoric of conspiracy is almost always accompanied by visions of apocalypse. The Birchers used to publish a yearly map of the world, with the Communist-controlled areas in various shades of red. The last installment showed the continental U.S. a bright pink which, according to the key, indicated the area was 65% Communist-dominated.

Like the Birchers, whose anti-"internationalist" rhetoric he parrots, Ron Paul rejects the idea that free market ideology has made any gains in the Reagan years. "Repealing the welfare state may be popular with a growing number of frustrated American citizens, but that attitude is not yet reflected in Washington." Things are bad and getting worse. "It's highly unlikely that we'll reach the 1990's without a convulsion of our political and economic system," says Paul. "Although nothing goes up or down in a straight line, we can be sure the long term will bring us ever-increasing interest rates—higher with each cycle and over 20 percent before this cycle completes itself in 1986 or 1987."

In the hopped-up world of the political cult—whether it be the Marxists predicting the sudden collapse of capitalism or the Birchers predicting the end of U.S. national sovereignty—apocalypse is always right around the comer. Paul is more dramatic, and more explicit than most. Interest rates will reach "unbelievable heights in this decade." No doubt the evil international bankers are responsible for this one. "There will come a day," says Paul, "when the world finanaciers will rush from dollars just as they have recently rushed into dollars." He predicts "chaos in the international financial markets," "massive debt liquidation," and an "inflationary collapse." "The form of timing of the collapse are yet to be determined; the event itself is certain." All of this—a major banking, currency, economic, and political crisis"—will supposedly "hit this Nation and the western world, most likely before the 1990's."

This wild-eyed millennialism is characteristic of all fringe political movements, and is a device utilized by religious cults as well, notably the Seventh Day Adventists and Jehovah's Witnesses. These groups are forever forecasting universal destruction. Some, like the early Adventists—and Ron Paul—even set a specific date for Armageddon. The Adventists found, however, that the popularity of their sect plummeted when the appointed day arrived and the End was nowhere in sight. Ron Paul and his followers would do well to heed the Adventist example and stay vague about dates.

Like his Bircher allies and brothers-in-spirit, Ron Paul is an avid defender of South Africa's racist apartheid regime. "The shortcomings of South Africa's apartheid system are denounced continuously by the same politicians who ignore the fact that in communist countries dissidents aren't segregated; they are shot or sent to concentration camps. In comparison, segregation is seen as more vicious than the exiling and the killing of the political dissidents in Russia. South Africa, for its defective system of civil liberties, is banned from the Olympics, while we beg the murdering communists to come."

A system which denies the black majority the right to vote, to own property, to travel freely, to live as human beings, is described as merely a "defective system of civil liberties." Apartheid is reduced to "segregation," as if the wholesale enslavement of the black population was not involved. Paul seems to think that poor persecuted South Africa is getting a bum rap, picked on by pinko liberals who "beg the murdering communists to come" to the Olympics.

What Paul misses is that the world has seen what happens when racist ideology is allowed to take and keep power in a Western, industrialized state; South Africa's status as an international pariah is inextricably linked to memories of the Holocaust and the determination that it shall not happen again.

Blind to the oppression of millions of black South Africans, Paul is a fanatic on the subject of the "rights" of the fetus. "Government responsibility to protect life and liberty becomes muddled when the Government and courts chosen to protect them under the guise of privacy and civil liberties, totally ignore the real issue. The abortionist who makes a fortune dropping fetuses and infants into buckets, instead of being restrained by government, is encouraged by the courts and the law. Some show greater concern for the lives of seals than for the life of a human baby."

At a time when the Reaganites are determined to leave their mark on future generations by stacking the Supreme Court and reversing Roe vs. Wad, is the Libertarian Party really going to nominate an anti-abortion activist for Presidents of the United States? If anything is a clear indication that some in the LP have hitched their wagon to the New Right, then this is it.

"Unwitting allies, [libertarians and Birchers] usually end up voting in what must be, for them, a distressingly similar manner, against the liberals," wrote Alan Crawford, in 1980. "When it comes time to put aside discussions of ideology and enter the voting booth to choose between the candidates before them, they reject liberalism and function as supporters (grudgingly or otherwise) of the New Right." This thesis, startling back in 1980, was years ahead of its time. The nomination of Ron Paul will be proof enough of that.

What is "Libertarian Populism"?

In his apologia for Ron Paul, which is being distributed by the campaign, Murray Rotbard claims that "the exciting thing about the Ron Paul campaign is that he will push for a resurrection of the Old Right (that's the old­old Right, the pre-National Review right), the right-wing of Taft and Bricker and Wherry ... Ron Paul believes, and I agree, that there are millions of Americans who are instinctive Old Rightists, or libertarian populists, who have been confused and bewildered by decades of Establishment propaganda, and who are there waiting for someone to supply articulation and leadership to resurrect the old cause.

The reality is that, in the unlikely event Ron Paul resurrects anything, it is likely to be the Same Old Right of Robert Welch, Gary Allen and Larry McDonald. As for the alleged appeal of some strange hybrid known as "libertarian populism," the truth of the matter is that this is an exotic brand of populism indeed. Far from appealing to the average, everyday voter, Paul's perfervid rhetoric denouncing the nefarious "internationalists" and the evil bankers will appeal only to convinced ultra-rightists. "We have before us a rare and remarkable opportunity to seize the moment,” fantasizes Rothbard, “to leave at long last the era of the small club and the study group and leap into the mainstream of history.” But Paul’s Birchite line will narrow rather than broaden the LP political horizons. His hate-the-bankers line will only make sense to the minuscule constituencies of the American Independent Party and the Liberty Lobby-inspired Populist Party, which regularly excoriate the evils of “internationalist bankers and “international Zionist-Communist conspiracy” in the same breath. (In these circles, the former is a code word for the latter.)

Rothbard claims that the purpose of the campaign will be to "mobilize a coalition of Americans who are exercised over one or more libertarian goals." In fact, it will mobilize only a dubious and unstable coalition with an embarrassing array of right-wing extremists. As an admirer of "tax protester" Gordon Kohl, the right-wing terrorist and leader of the anti-Semitic Posse Comitatus, no doubt Rothbard considers this a good thing.1

The real clue as to the nature of the campaign Rothbard envisions is his list of the campaign's basic themes. First and foremost is: "(1) opposition to taxes. Specifically, as 'the only fair tax,' abolition of the income tax, and the passage of the Liberty Amendment."

Incredibly, the number one issue of the Libertarian Party's 1988 campaign is to be the Liberty Amendment, the Birch-sponsored right-wing "mass movement" of the Fifties which never really got off the ground. For years Robert Welch exhorted his followers to put the Liberty Amendment at the head of their agenda; in the JBS Bulletin, it always appeared near the top of the Leader's long list of things members ought to be doing. Welch's latter day followers are still at the old stand, trying to get their panacea approved by have before us a rare and remarkable state legislatures. This is "the old cause" that opportunity to seize the moment," fantasizes Rothbard and Ron Paul hope to resurrect—a "mass movement" that has been stalled for decades.

What this strategy makes crystal clear is that Rothbard & Co. have decided to write off the vast majority of the American people, and instead focus on the fringe, specifically members and sympathizers of the John Birch Society and the rest of the right-wing fever swamp.

The rest of Paul's agenda fits in nicely with this central theme; in addition to "ultra­hard money" (i.e. the gold standard) Rothbard lists: "(3) personal liberty. That means opposition to the draft, to draft registration, to drug laws, sodomy laws, or ... gun control." In other words, we will hear about nothing but the evils of gun control and, on occasion, the draft. Number four is "all-out opposition to foreign intevention", which means abolition of foreign aid and an explicit call "to bring the boys back home." Naturally there is to be no mention of nuclear arms control-that would turn off the Liberty Amendment crowd (remember, the Liberty Amendment is to be the top priority). Besides, the Old Right didn't have to deal with nuclear weapons and hi-tech horrors like Star Wars-which is why Paul is able to graft support for SDI and opposition to all arms talks onto his peculiar brand of "isolationism."

Paul's foreign policy pronouncements exude a distinctly nativist undertone, because xenophobia permeates his entire worldview. In his Farewell Address to Congress, he rhapsodizes on the glorious future that awaits us if only we can reduce Federal spending by 80%. "The budget will be immediately balanced and the debt repaid. No more wealth will be transferred to the poor, the rich, the foreigner, the bankers, or the arms manufacturers." [emphasis added] For shame.

What emerges from Rothbard's call to support Ron Paul is the unmistakable yearning for some kind of mass influence, no matter what the cost to principle. "Libertarianism does not have to be a small movement, confined to a few thousand, or a few hundred thousand people. We have to realize that... libertarianism was a mighty mass movement, commanding the allegiance of a large number, often a large majority of the population.” If he has to settle for the Birchers, and the denizens of the nativist American Right, then so be it.

Satan's words in Paradise Lost—"Better to reign in Hell then serve in Heaven"--certainly characterize not only the spirit of Rothbard's politics, but also the politics of the Paul campaign. Both are a prescription for disaster.

1. Rothbard discontinued his Reason column when editor Bob Poole refused to publish his paean to Kohl. He submitted it to Libertarian Vanguard. where the editorial board chose to kill it rather than nm it alongside a response from one of the editors.

Our notes: This analysis of Ron Paul was written prior to the Ron Paul newsletter scandal. It accurately laid out the numerous themes that Ron Paul and his newsletter would promote for the next several years. More importantly it laid out how the Ron Paul team planned a "libertarian populist" theme to appeal to the nativist elements in America. After the scandal with the Ron Paul newsletters and their various bigoted and conspiracist themes Reason magazine went back into history and showed how this "populist" agenda was actively planned out. It should be noted that these "populist" themes that Paul pushed began a transformation of libertarianism away from its original classical liberal principles and toward a Right-wing conservative worldview that often clashes violent with genuine libertarianism. The author of the article is now associated closely with Lew Rockwell and is attacking people who says things similar to what he originally said in this piece.

For the Reason article detailing the plan by Rockwell, Rothbard and Paul to reach out to the extreme Right go here.

Who Wrote the Ron Paul Newsletters?

Who Wrote the Ron Paul Newsletters?

Reprinted from Reason.com.

Libertarian movement veterans, and a Paul campaign staffer, say it was "paleolibertarian" strategist Lew Rockwell

Ron Paul doesn't seem to know much about his own newsletters. The libertarian-leaning presidential candidate says he was unaware, in the late 1980s and early 1990s, of the bigoted rhetoric about African Americans and gays that was appearing under his name. He told CNN last week that he still has "no idea" who might have written inflammatory comments such as "Order was only restored in L.A. when it came time for the blacks to pick up their welfare checks"—statements he now repudiates. Yet in interviews with reason, a half-dozen longtime libertarian activists—including some still close to Paul—all named the same man as Paul's chief ghostwriter: Ludwig von Mises Institute founder Llewellyn Rockwell, Jr.

Financial records from 1985 and 2001 show that Rockwell, Paul's congressional chief of staff from 1978 to 1982, was a vice president of Ron Paul & Associates, the corporation that published the Ron Paul Political Report and the Ron Paul Survival Report. The company was dissolved in 2001. During the period when the most incendiary items appeared—roughly 1989 to 1994—Rockwell and the prominent libertarian theorist Murray Rothbard championed an open strategy of exploiting racial and class resentment to build a coalition with populist "paleoconservatives," producing a flurry of articles and manifestos whose racially charged talking points and vocabulary mirrored the controversial Paul newsletters recently unearthed by The New Republic. To this day Rockwell remains a friend and advisor to Paul—accompanying him to major media appearances; promoting his candidacy on the LewRockwell.com blog; publishing his books; and peddling an array of the avuncular Texas congressman's recent writings and audio recordings.

Rockwell has denied responsibility for the newsletters' contents to The New Republic's Jamie Kirchick. Rockwell twice declined to discuss the matter with reason, maintaining this week that he had "nothing to say." He has characterized discussion of the newsletters as "hysterical smears aimed at political enemies" of The New Republic. Paul himself called the controversy "old news" and "ancient history" when we reached him last week, and he has not responded to further request for comment.

But a source close to the Paul presidential campaign told reason that Rockwell authored much of the content of the Political Report and Survival Report. "If Rockwell had any honor he'd come out and I say, ‘I wrote this stuff,'" said the source, who asked not to be named because Paul remains friendly with Rockwell and is reluctant to assign responsibility for the letters. "He should have done it 10 years ago."

Rockwell was publicly named as Paul's ghostwriter as far back as a 1988 issue of the now-defunct movement monthly American Libertarian. "This was based on my understanding at the time that Lew would write things that appeared in Ron's various newsletters," former AL editor Mike Holmes told reason. "Neither Ron nor Lew ever told me that, but other people close to them such as Murray Rothbard suggested that Lew was involved, and it was a common belief in libertarian circles."

Individualist-feminist Wendy McElroy, who on her blog characterized the author as an associate of hers for many years, called the ghostwriter's identity "an open secret within the circles in which I run." Though she declined to name names either on her blog or when contacted byreason, she later approvingly cited a post naming Rockwell at the anonymous blog RightWatch.

Timothy Wirkman Virkkala, formerly the managing editor of the libertarian magazine Liberty, told reason that the names behind the Political Report were widely known in his magazine's offices as well, because Liberty's late editor-in-chief, Bill Bradford, had discussed the newsletters with the principals, and then with his staff. "I understood that Burton S. Blumert was the moneybags that got all this started, that he was the publisher," Virkkala said. "Lew Rockwell, editor and chief writer; Jeff Tucker, assistant, probably a writer; Murray Rothbard, cheering from the sidelines, probably ghosting now and then." (Virkkala has offered his own reaction to the controversy at his Web site.) Blumert, Paul's 1988 campaign chairman and a private supporter this year, did not respond to a request for an interview; Rothbard died in 1995. We reached Tucker, now editorial vice president of Rockwell's Mises.org, at his office, and were told: "I just really am not going to make a statement, I'm sorry. I'll take all responsibility for being the editor of Mises.org, OK?"

The early 1990s writings became liabilities for Paul long before last week's New Republic story. Back in 1996, Paul narrowly eked out a congressional victory over Democrat Lefty Morris, who made the newsletters one of his main campaign issues, damning them both for their racial content and for their advocacy of drug legalization. At the time, Paul defended the statements that appeared under his name, claiming that they expressed his "philosophical differences" with Democrats and had been "taken out of context." He finally disavowed them in a 2001interview with Texas Monthly, explaining that his campaign staff had convinced him at the time that it would be too "confusing" to attribute them to a ghostwriter.

Besides Ron Paul and Lew Rockwell, the officers of Ron Paul & Associates included Paul's wife Carol, Paul's daughter Lori Pyeatt, Paul staffer Penny Langford-Freeman, and longtime campaign manager Mark Elam (who has managed every Paul congressional campaign since 1996 and is currently the Texas coordinator for the presidential run), according to tax records from 1993 and 2001. Langford-Freeman did not respond to interview requests as of press time. Elam, president of M&M Graphics and Advertising, confirmed to reason that his company printed the newsletters, but said that the texts reached him as finished products.

The publishing operation was lucrative. A tax document from June 1993—wrapping up the year in which the Political Report had published the "welfare checks" comment on the L.A. riots—reported an annual income of $940,000 for Ron Paul & Associates, listing four employees in Texas (Paul's family and Rockwell) and seven more employees around the country. If Paul didn't know who was writing his newsletters, he knew they were a crucial source of income and a successful tool for building his fundraising base for a political comeback.

The tenor of Paul's newsletters changed over the years. The ones published between Paul's return to private life after three full terms in congress (1985) and his Libertarian presidential bid (1988) notably lack inflammatory racial or anti-gay comments. The letters published between Paul's first run for president and his return to Congress in 1996 are another story—replete with claims that Martin Luther King "seduced underage girls and boys," that black protesters should gather "at a food stamp bureau or a crack house" rather than the Statue of Liberty, and that AIDS sufferers "enjoy the attention and pity that comes with being sick."

Eric Dondero, Paul's estranged former volunteer and personal aide, worked for Paul on and off between 1987 and 2004 (back when he was named "Eric Rittberg"), and since the Iraq war has become one of the congressman's most vociferous and notorious critics. By Dondero's account, Paul's inner circle learned between his congressional stints that "the wilder they got, the more bombastic they got with it, the more the checks came in. You think the newsletters were bad? The fundraising letters were just insane from that period." Cato Institute President Ed Crane told reason he recalls a conversation from some time in the late 1980s in which Paul claimed that his best source of congressional campaign donations was the mailing list for The Spotlight, the conspiracy-mongering, anti-Semitic tabloid run by the Holocaust denier Willis Carto until it folded in 2001.

The newsletters' obsession with blacks and gays was of a piece with a conscious political strategy adopted at that same time by Lew Rockwell and Murray Rothbard. After breaking with the Libertarian Party following the 1988 presidential election, Rockwell and Rothbard formed a schismatic "paleolibertarian" movement, which rejected what they saw as the social libertinism and leftist tendencies of mainstream libertarians. In 1990, they launched the Rothbard-Rockwell Report, where they crafted a plan they hoped would midwife a broad new "paleo" coalition.

Rockwell explained the thrust of the idea in a 1990 Liberty essay entitled "The Case for Paleo-Libertarianism." To Rockwell, the LP was a "party of the stoned," a halfway house for libertines that had to be "de-loused." To grow, the movement had to embrace older conservative values. "State-enforced segregation," Rockwell wrote, "was wrong, but so is State-enforced integration. State-enforced segregation was not wrong because separateness is wrong, however. Wishing to associate with members of one's own race, nationality, religion, class, sex, or even political party is a natural and normal human impulse."

The most detailed description of the strategy came in an essay Rothbard wrote for the January 1992 Rothbard-Rockwell Report, titled "Right-Wing Populism: A Strategy for the Paleo Movement." Lamenting that mainstream intellectuals and opinion leaders were too invested in the status quo to be brought around to a libertarian view, Rothbard pointed to David Duke and Joseph McCarthy as models for an "Outreach to the Rednecks," which would fashion a broad libertarian/paleoconservative coalition by targeting the disaffected working and middle classes. (Duke, a former Klansman, was discussed in strikingly similar terms in a 1990 Ron Paul Political Report.) These groups could be mobilized to oppose an expansive state, Rothbard posited, by exposing an "unholy alliance of 'corporate liberal' Big Business and media elites, who, through big government, have privileged and caused to rise up a parasitic Underclass, who, among them all, are looting and oppressing the bulk of the middle and working classes in America."

Anyone with doubts about the composition of the "parasitic Underclass" could look to the regular "PC Watch" feature of the Report, in which Rockwell compiled tale after tale of thuggish black men terrifying petite white and Asian women. (Think Birth of a Nation crossed withNews of the Weird.) The list of PC outrages in the February 1993 issue, for example, cited a Washington Post column on films that feature "plenty of interracial sex, and nobody noticing," a news article about black members of the Southern Methodist University marching band "engaged in mass shoplifting while in Japan," and a sob story about a Korean shop-owner who shot a black shoplifter and assailant in the head: The travesty is that Mrs. Du got five years probation, and must cancel a trip to Korea.

The populist outreach program centered on tax reduction, abolition of welfare, elimination of "the entire 'civil rights' structure, which tramples on the property rights of every American," and a police crackdown on "street criminals." "Cops must be unleashed," Rothbard wrote, "and allowed to administer instant punishment, subject of course to liability when they are in error." While they're at it, they should "clear the streets of bums and vagrants. Where will they go? Who cares?" To seal the deal with social conservatives, Rothbard urged a federalist compromise in their direction on "pornography, prostitution, or abortion." And because grassroots organizing is "plodding and boring," this new paleo coalition would need to be kick-started by "high-level, preferably presidential, political campaigns."

The presidential campaign Rothbard and Rockwell supported in 1988 was Ron Paul's run on the Libertarian Party ticket. In 1992, they were again ready to back Paul, until Pat Buchanan convinced the obstetrician to withdraw and back his conservative challenge to then-president Bush. "We have a dream," Rockwell wrote in that same January 1992 edition of RRR, "and perhaps someday it will come to pass. (Hell, if 'Dr.' King can have a dream, why can't we?) Our dream is that, one day, we Buchananites can present Mr. and Mrs. America, and all the liberal and conservative and centrist elites, with a dramatic choice....We can say: 'Look, gang: you have a choice, it's either Pat Buchanan or David Duke.'"

Carol Moore, a left-libertarian activist who opposed Rothbard, Rockwell, and Paul at the late 1980s Libertarian conventions that led to the paleo split, theorizes that the defeat made them bitter. "They had a tendency to be anti-PC," Moore told reason, "and it was really stepped up after they lost. They were really angry and not that funny."

They are less angry these days. Visitors to LewRockwell.com or Mises.org since 2001 are less likely to feel the need for a shower. One can almost detect what sounds like mellowing in Rockwell's reflections on the high and heady paleo days, unburdened by ominous warnings of the looming race war. Nowadays the fiery rhetoric is directed at the "pimply-faced" Kirchick, "Benito" Giuliani, and the "so-called 'libertarians'" at reason and Cato.

But perhaps the best refutation of the old approach is not the absence of race-baiting rhetoric from its progenitors, but the success of the 2008 Ron Paul phenomenon. The man who was once the Great Paleolibertarian Hope has built a broad base of enthusiastic supporters without resorting to venomous rhetoric or coded racism. He has stuck stubbornly to the issues of sound money, "humble foreign policy," and shrinking the state. He wraps up his speeches with a three-part paean to individualism: "I don't want to run your life," "I don't want to run the economy," and "I don't want to run the world." He talks about the disproportionate effect of the drug war on African-Americans, and appeared at a September 2007 Republican debate on black issues that was boycotted by the then-frontrunners. All this and more have brought him $30 million-plus from more than 100,000 donors; thousands of campaign volunteers; and the largest rallies he's ever spoken to, including a crowd of almost 5,000 in Philadelphia.

Yet those new supporters, many of whom are first encountering libertarian ideas through the Ron Paul Revolution, deserve a far more frank explanation than the campaign has as yet provided of how their candidate's name ended up atop so many ugly words. Ron Paul may not be a racist, but he became complicit in a strategy of pandering to racists—and taking "moral responsibility" for that now means more than just uttering the phrase. It means openly grappling with his own past—acknowledging who said what, and why. Otherwise he risks damaging not only his own reputation, but that of the philosophy to which he has committed his life.

Julian Sanchez is a contributing editor and David Weigel is an associate editor of reason.

Note: Lew Rockwell is the founder of a paleoconservative think tank, the Ludwig von Mises Institute, which was founded after the death of Mises and without his actual knowledge. It promotes an agenda that is often at odds with Mises himself. The Mises Institute was founded by Rockwell who had previously worked for Ron Paul's congressional office, after he was employed by the Conservative Book Club. Rockwell went on to be Ron Paul's business partner in the newsletter business and with Paul served as c0-editor. Rockwell and Paul remain closely allied to this day and Rockwell uses his website and the Mises site to promote Paul. In addition various individuals connected to the Mises Institute regularly attack individuals who criticize Ron Paul or Lew Rockwell and their sordid associations. Ron Paul has pretended he did know who wrote the newsletters yet only four people were paid employees including his wife, his daughter and Rockwell.