Friday, July 13, 2007

The Ron Paul Phenomenon

Most Dear Gentle Readers know I’m a Yellow Dog Democrat searching for the best candidate to support. In that quest, I’ll share my findings along the way with apologies to my heroes Stephen Colbert and David Letterman in Better Know Your Lesser Known Presidential Candidates. But keep that fact in mind. It does color what you read.

I’m a bit like Goldilocks in that none of them (the rag-tag bunch who still have their hats in the ring) seems “just right.” Big Daddy Gore is wisely sitting on the sidelines, and the more he sits, the better he is starting to look. How strange it would be if we had a couple of non-candidates from Tennessee eventually duking it out for president?

The Republicans are running scared and haven’t gotten their nastiness together yet, because old Fred Thompson is about the best they can do at the moment and he’s not even officially in the race. Do we seriously think Rudy has a chance with the evangelicals?

Which brings me to the topic I started out thinking about. Ron Paul. In case you don’t know who he is, I’ll share what I know after watching a YouTube video of him, looking at his Web site and consulting a few other sources. And by the way, please go watch some of these videos to find out a little bit more about the candidates. You’ll get a better picture than you do from sound bites on cable news networks or the evening news if you are one of the few still watching it.

Ron Paul is a Republican easily mistaken for a Libertarian. He has, in fact, run for president on the Libertarian Party ticket. In my quest for more information, I discovered that Paul, a U. S. congressman from Texas who served in the 70s and 80s, got out of politics after a failed bid for senator and returned to delivering babies (he’s a specialist in obstetrics/gynecology) for awhile, and then reentered politics in 1997.

According to his Web site, Paul:

He has never voted to raise taxes.
He has never voted for an unbalanced budget.
He has never voted for a federal restriction on gun ownership.
He has never voted to raise congressional pay.
He has never taken a government-paid junket.
He has never voted to increase the power of the executive branch.

He voted against the Patriot Act.
He voted against regulating the Internet.
He voted against the Iraq war.

In a speech before the U. S. House this spring, Paul said:

Certainly, the neoconservative belief that we have a moral obligation to spread American values worldwide through force justifies the conditions of war in order to rally support at home for the heavy hand of government. It is through this policy, it should surprise no one, that our liberties are undermined. The economy becomes overextended, and our involvement worldwide becomes prohibited. Out of fear of being labeled unpatriotic, most of the citizens become compliant and accept the argument that some loss of liberty is required to fight the war in order to remain safe.

This is a bad trade-off, in my estimation, especially when done in the name of patriotism. Loyalty to the state and to autocratic leaders is substituted for true patriotism; that is, a willingness to challenge the state and defend the country, the people and the culture. The more difficult the times, the stronger the admonition comes that the leaders be not criticized.

Tune in next week for another Better Know Your Lesser Known Presidential Candidate.


Don said...

Congratulations, Sheila. You have discovered the only candidate for president who has a proven record to prove that he believes in governing in accordance with the US Constitution.

Sheila said...

Glad you stopped by Don.

Lavender Chick said...

Good job! I have been feeling like a chick without a party - yes, I'm a registered republican, but have voted primarily democratic in the last few elections.... I've pretty much diagnosed myself as PIC, party identity crisis.

I think you're right about Ron Paul. I'm going to do some more homework, but I like what I'm seeing!

Sheila said...

Glad you'll be doing more homework, lavender chick. Just wish more people would. And you sound more like an independent despite being registered as a republican.

I won't be supporting Paul, but I do think he seems to be (without a lot of intensive research on my part) true to what I thought the Republican Party stood for.

And like you I'm unhappy with my party, the Democratic Party. I have high hopes that someone will step up the plate, but I'm just not sure who that's going to be. I will not support Hillary Clinton.

Don said...

Lavender Chick, this is the first time I've noticed you, so I checked your blog and found your comment about Lady Bird's funeral procession touching. Did you know that she had a connection to Alabama where I live, and from which Sheila just recently departed?

Sheila, and Lavender Chick, if either of you (or anyone else who reads this) wants to do more homework on Dr. Paul, I have quite a collection of information about him I'd love to share because I truly believe he may represent the last hope for the USA to survive as we have known it if he can become our next president. Sheila knows how to email me, but LC doesn't, and I don't want to put my personal email address here. LC, and any readers, you can send an email to my website ( by addressing it to and then I will reply giving you my personal address.

Sheila said...

Thanks for the info, Don, and I hope lavender chick will check out your link. There are many people on both sides of the political spectrum unhappy with their political parties for whatever reason. So far I'm happy to see such a big group of candidates. I like to think we have a choice, but it's increasingly becoming harder to feel that way. Money and image manipulation take the real candidate further away from voters. Do we really know what or who we are voting for? It's a crapshoot.

Jackie said...

Although I am on the other side of the Atlantic I am finding myself reading up on all candidates I see mentioned on the political blogs I come across.

Shame Al Gore didn't take the same stand he has today or he might have got those votes needed to have got in and how different things could have been for the US and outside world.

Hopefully the voters do their homework and find the perfect woman/man this time around. Someone both parties respect.

Sheila said...

Jackie, you may be in South Africa, but you are right when you say that we in America need someone both parties (and independents) can respect. We have become so partisan that the greater good is often overlooked.