Idiot leaves Ron Paul coalition; finds natural home in Democrat Party

Ron Paul yard signA liberal friend who despairs of my decision to turn my back on the Democrat Party and declare myself a conservative, sent me an article from Salon.  In it, the author smugly explains that he was a life-long libertarian, went to a Ron Paul convention, saw that a lot of the people there were conspiracy theorists, and then joined the Democrat Party.

Here’s the gist of it:  the guy grew up in Nevada, in a town that valued guns.  He was told that he was a libertarian, so he was.  Without showing any actual understanding of the principle’s behind small government and individual freedom, he liked that Ron Paul libertarians want to make pot legal and hate Wars for Oil.  In 2008, he went to a Ron Paul convention and was shocked that people there espoused conspiracy views (which Ron Paul followers are famous for doing) and believed that welfare is a bad thing.  Then, when the financial meltdown happened in 2008, he opposed the bank bailout (which libertarians opposed), but approved of greatly increasing the welfare state (something libertarians also opposed).  Oh, and he “wept with joy” when Obama was inaugurated.  As for the Tea Partiers, they were “monsters” who made him want to “puke.”  You see, there are “racists” amongst the Tea Partiers, as well as 9/11 conspiracy theorists and Birthers.  He then went to a Progressive college to get a degree in creative writing and married a liberal Canadian.  And then, pretty much badda-boom, badda-bing, there he was, a happy Democrat.

What this guy utterly fails to see is that he started out with hard-core Leftist ideology — free pot, no War for Oil, don’t give money to evil bankers, government is the solution, Tea Partiers are racist, Obama is a God who causes tears of joy — but by an accident of birth, ended up thinking he was a libertarian.  Then, when he figured out that he was a moonbat, he headed for his real political party.  It’s not so much a case of conversion as of mistaken identity.  “You mean I’m not really Lord Ambrose Wafflepoof-Chilteningham?  I am, instead, plain old Comrade John Brown?  At last, the world makes sense!”

As for his attacks against the Ron Paul group, I have to agree that I don’t like Ron Paul or his followers either.  Their isolationism (which the proto-Democrat convert loved) is dangerous, and their affinity for neo-Nazis and other immoral, bad actors is awful.  Paul is too dumb to realize that the neo-Nazis are statists who hide in his Libertarian enclave because they believe it’s the best incubator for people too dumb to realize that the libertarian’s totally laissez faire attitude to everything allows evil to grow as well as good.

The two main problems with the guy’s post are that he (a) never understood true conservativism and (b) conflates Ron Paul libertarians with conservatives.  Conservatives embrace constitutional government, not no government.  Most conservatives are not conspiracy theorists, although the Birther meme is out there — in part because Obama has withheld evidence (birth certificates and transcripts), either to stir up conspiracy controversy (“Hey, look!  I can make my dog crazy by hiding his bone”) or because there really is something to hide (I believe he might be hiding a pretense that he was a foreign national to help him get college admission/aid).

If you want serious conspiracy mavens, look Left.  That’s where the Truthers live, that’s were the antisemites who subscribe to the Protocols of the Elders of Zion live, and that’s where the people who focus obsessively on the Koch brothers live.  The fact that there is no evidence whatsoever that the Koch brothers did anything more than fund the Heartland Institute is irrelevant:

"The Nation" uses its Koch brother paranoia to fuel a fundraising drive

“The Nation” uses its Koch brother paranoia to fuel a fundraising drive

Funnily enough, all these Lefties never seem that exercised about George Soros’ funding of just about everything to the Left, which is as much an exercise of free speech as is the Koch’s funding of the Heartland Institute.

Another conspiracy meme on the Left, one that helped propel Obama back into the White House in 2012 was the spurious war on women. The Left convinced credulous women and metrosexuals that a vote for Romney was a vote to put women barefoot, pregnant, and in the kitchen, as forced sex-slaves to slobbering, fat, white Bible-toting Christian males. (In other words, The Handmaid’s Tale.)  That this dark vision had no reality outside the pages of a bad 1980s feminist novel is irrelevant.

And of course, there’s the “Tea Party is racist” meme that the guy, studying at his Progressive university, totally accepted.  He seems unaware that Andrew Breitbart’s $100,000 reward for anyone spotting racism at an Obamacare protest is still out there, unclaimed.  If you want racism, look Left.

The guy who wrote the Salon article was never a conservative.  He was always a hardcore, big state Leftist who had accidentally wandered into the wrong party.  His little post isn’t an indictment of conservativism.  It is, instead, a confession of his own lack of self-awareness and facile embrace of the party of the moment.

In politics, the crazies on either side tend to meet up *UPDATED*

There is a tendency to imagine politics as a straight line, going from Left to Right, or statist to individualist.  I think, though, that it would be more accurate to imagine it as a curve, with the two ends sometimes straining to meet each other.  Ron Paul’s libertarianism, which includes a Truther strain, deep hostility to Israel and Jews, support for Cynthia McKinney, and a healthy dollop of paranoia, is closer in tone to the far Left than it is to the Republican Party with which he’s allied himself.

There’s no doubt but that Ron Paul has good ideas.  Up to a certain point, his libertarianism is appealing, insofar as he talks about small government and greater individual freedom.  And then he veers into crazy land, and ends up sounding exactly like Van Jones or some other paranoid anti-American guy on the opposite end of the political spectrum.

Nevertheless, crazy or not, he’s got fans in Iowa.  Before Paul starts congratulating himself on his compelling message and amazing traction, he might want to look at Iowa’s political legacy, which goes back to a radical Progressive who held views remarkably similar to those that Paul spouts now.  In other words, when it comes to Iowa, this ground’s already been fertilized.

UPDATE:  For a more detailed analysis about the myriad problems with Ron Paul, check out this Dorothy Rabinowitz article (which may or may not be behind a pay wall).  As I’ve said, Paul has some good ideas about small government and they shouldn’t be discounted.  Those ideas, however, are inextricably intertwined with an often amoral world view that must be considered in discounting Paul as a serious candidate.

Two more things to check out *UPDATED*

Conspiracy thinking is an interesting thing.  We know that conspiracies really can and do exist.  We know that even paranoid people have enemies.  But how do we know whether any given theory points to a legitimate plan, goal or movement, or simply reflects our own fears and biases?  Two conspiracy theories have been in the news lately:  the 911 Truthers and the Obama Birthers.  Because both have assumed a great deal of importance within certain segments of the Left and the Right, the problem of distinguishing between real and crackpot theories is legitimate and important.  Over at David Horowitz’s Newsreal, a companion site to FrontPage Magazine, David Swindle takes a crack at separating wheat from chaff when it comes to conspiracy theories.

Also, you don’t have to be a conspiracy theorist to recognize that Barack Obama is governing from the Mae West script (and no, I’m not talking about those rippling man boobs he likes to flex and wave on the beaches of Hawaii).

UPDATE:  Now it’s three things to check out, and I suspect the list will grow.  Lorie Byrd takes umbrage at being accused of racism for being disinterested in all the glamour details of the Obama’s anniversary dinner.

If it seems too good to be true….

Is it a coincidence that, as the birther issue reaches an ever larger audience, a purported Kenyan birth certificate, complete with raised seal, suddenly pops up?  My suspicion is that the birth certificate is about as reliable as those emails I routinely receive from Nigeria, assuring me that, if I just hand over my bank account or credit card numbers, I’ll receive millions of dollars . . . very soon.  Much as it would be rather fun if it were the real birth certificate, even if I were a wild-assed gambler, I’d bet against this one.

Speaking of the birther issue, Dave Freddoso makes a very good point about the media’s collective guffaw when it comes to the birthers:

Twenty-eight percent of Republicans believe President Obama is not a natural-born citizen of the United States, and 30 percent are “not sure,” according to this poll.

But before liberals begin to smirk, here’s a poll from 2007, in which 35 percent of Democrats said that President Bush knew in advance about the 9/11 attacks, and 26 percent were not sure.

So if 58 percent of Republicans are living in a delusional fantasy world because they are out of power, then 61 percent of Democrats were doing the same thing until just recently (perhaps they still are). It’s a clean, apples-to-apples comparison with a clear lesson: People get a bit kooky when they’re out of power, Democrats about 3 points kookier — which is probably within the margin of error.

The only real difference between the birthers and the truthers is that the birthers’ claim is actually susceptible to proof.  If Obama releases his long form certificate it’s all over.  By not doing so, he waves a red flag in front of the birther bulls so that the media can target them for public ridicule.

Ahmadinejad joins Truther ranks

Sometimes, if you want to run a sanity check, it’s helpful to look at those who share the same views you do.  Perhaps some of the Truthers might be a little shaken in their beliefs if they realized that apocalyto-nut Ahmadinejad is also a Truther.  On second thought, when I think about who the Truthers are, it occurs to me that finding that he is a fellow traveler may just cement them more firmly in their views.

Imperialistic plans

One of the things about conspiracy theorists is that they live in a hazy world of innuendo and speculation.  There’s never any hard evidence to support their theory, just a lot of disparate facts that can be spun together into a tangled and usually nonsensical tapestry.  As often as not, the beauty of the theories is the complete absence of facts, a vacuum that itself is sufficient to convince the conspiracy theorist that there’s something rotten in Denmark.  The 911 Truthers, for example, are unfazed by the fact that their conspiracy, to be true, would require both the complicity of and years of silence by dozens, hundreds or even thousands of Americans.  If anything, this unnatural silence, coupled with the fact the buildings’ collapse and their all-encompassing hatred for BushCheney is all they need to deny the known facts about 19 Muslims who hijacked plans and crashed them, with their fuel tanks at almost full capacity, into buildings.  Instead, they are deeply enmeshed in a shadowy world of conspiracies from which it’s doubtful they’ll ever escape.

I mention all this because many on the Left think that I’m falling prey to conspiracy theorist paranoia when I say that Islamists are out to get us.  My defense, always, is that I’m not trying to piece together random and irrelevant pieces of evidence (or the absence of any evidence) to reach this conclusion.  I don’t have to — the Islamists are saying it themselves:

And in a sermon televised on Friday, Yunis al-Astal, a Hamas MP and cleric, told worshipers that Islam would soon conquer Rome, “the capital of the Catholics, or the Crusader capital, which has declared its hostility to Islam, and which has planted the brothers of apes and pigs in Palestine in order to prevent the reawakening of Islam,” just as Constantinople was.

Rome, he said, would become “an advanced post for the Islamic conquests which will spread through Europe in its entirety, and then will turn to the two Americas, and even Eastern Europe.”

In his address aired on Hamas’s Al-Aksa TV and also translated by MEMRI, Astal told his audience: “Allah has chosen you for himself and for his religion, so that you will serve as the engine pulling this nation to the phase of succession, security, and consolidation of power, and even to conquests through da’wa [preaching] and military conquests of the capitals of the entire world.”

“I believe that our children or our grandchildren will inherit our jihad and our sacrifices, and Allah willing, the commanders of the conquest will come from among them. Today, we instill these good tidings in their souls, and by means of the mosques and the Koran books, and the history of our prophet, his companions, and the great leaders, we prepare them for the mission of saving humanity from the hellfire on the brink of which they stand.”

The clip can be viewed at http://www.memritv.org/clip/en/1739.htm.

One could conclude, of course, that these are just words and, as we all know, sticks and stones can break our bones, but words can never hurt us.  However, there is no absence of evidence about sticks and stones.  Beginning with 9/11, Islamists inspired by these very types of words have committed 10,904 acts of violence in the name of their religion. With these actual facts, you don’t need to grub around on grassy knolls or wear tinfoil on your head to figure out that something very, very nasty is going on.  As an elderly Holocaust survivor memorably said, “When someone says he’s going to kill you, believe him.”

As for me, I don’t believe that all Muslims are imperialistic genocidal maniacs, just as we now know that, sixty five plus years ago, all Germans were not imperialistic genocidal maniacs.  But the one sure thing history has taught us is that, in any group, when a critical mass becomes homicidally crazy, it’s irrelevant whether the entire group actually believes in or supports the crazies.  For purposes of the damage that can be done, all that’s required is that critical mass.