For What It's Worth
Has Ron Paul abandoned the liberty movement? Based on his long history of principled work on behalf of freedom, not likely.
There's something happening here
What it is ain't exactly clear
There's a man with a gun over there
Telling me I got to beware
I think it's time we stop, children, what's that sound
Everybody look what's going down
~For What It's Worth by Buffalo Springfield, 1966
I'm angry today.
More accurately, I'm simply appalled by the reaction of far too many people to the one-two sucker punch delivered to the liberty movement last week, first by Rand Paul's endorsement of Mitt Romney, followed by Ron Paul's silence on the issue except for the now-infamous 'be respectful' statement and the ambiguous status of his presidential campaign. For them Ron Paul has suddenly become a pariah, a sign of defeat and despair. I could not disagree more strongly with this attitude.
I can understand this reaction from those who've only been familiar for a short time with Ron Paul and simply assume they've been sold out. And why not? Who could blame them for this assumption? They've learned quickly to recognize that being sold out by those who represented themselves as trustworthy to gain their consent or cooperation is an ongoing hazard in these atavistic times...it's just a survival strategy. What concerns me are others who are familiar with Dr. Paul and have been keeping an eye on him for years who've dropped him like a hot potato at the first real sign of trouble. It's as if Paul's flawless record suddenly became meaningless almost overnight as they blithely assert that he's suddenly begun the same old game playing or selling out people who've trusted him like any other opportunistic politician does. This response baffles me. I've written before that I've been familiar with and admired Dr. Paul since the 1990s for his consistency and single-minded support of liberty for so many years. The events of the past week are confusing and unsettling to be sure, but to go from supporting Ron Paul and his policies directly to writing him off as just another hack is not only irrational but destructive to the liberty movement itself.
I've never met Dr. Paul and don't presume to know his mind, but after the better part of twenty years' worth of reading his articles and books, watching him speak truth to power, consistently opposing the Establishment's constant spreading of death and debt, I think I have a pretty good handle on the man's character. He has never allowed expedience to compromise his stalwart support and promotion of liberty, sound money and noniniterventionist foreign policy. Not once. Even though I haven't met Dr. Paul, that makes him a friend of mine, and when a friend is involved with something so out of character, so against his character that the immediate response is a gut feeling that something's wrong, I will not automatically assume he's done an about-face reversal to negate all those years of effort, all those years of writing, speaking and acting in accordance with his core beliefs and values.
This occurred to me just a couple of days ago; while rolling past a bookshelf in my library, I stopped and plucked my copy of Dr. Paul's book The Revolution: A Manifesto from it and opened it to a random page. On that page was one of his many discussions of economics in which he made reference to one of the standards of libertarian thought, Frédéric Bastiat. It was quite a striking reminder right at that moment that not one bit of Dr. Paul's work is meaningless, or fluff, but completely solid and important to the liberty community. To assume he's abandoned all of that for whatever reason would be for me a treacherous act against a friend, one who I've had faith in for a long time, not from any mindless devotion, but for very concrete reasons based on his long history of integrity and consistency.
Speaking of reasons that explain his current silence, I can't explain it, and won't be able to without some solid data. Various possible explanations have been flying hither and yon around the internet, and some might be valid, or might not be. Some think that Dr. Paul might be pondering strategy, others opine that he's been threatened if he doesn't back down. I think it would take a much bigger threat than one against his personal safety to coerce Dr. Paul, something on the order of an attack on his supporters or even innocents. Goodness knows the actors trying to maintain the status quo, support the murderous military/industrial complex and continue the huge multinational banks' work in spreading debt worldwide to increase their profits and power have shown their willingness to use any means necessary to do so, as I detailed in my piece on the so-called 'model airplane bomber' false flag operation the FBI manufactured this past autumn. Who knows? Not I, but it really doesn't matter, and does not detract from Dr. Paul's superb work in the cause of liberty and the results he's gotten to date in furthering it. One of my regular sources for current events, Adam Kokesh, has impressed me by maintaining a level headed perspective on all this, from his consideration of possible skulduggery intended to sabotage Ron Paul's effectiveness to reminders like I just listed that it behooves people not to forget Dr. Paul's good works over many years that benefit all of us. That last link includes the words of Dr. Paul's wife Carol herself excerpted from a recent interview reaffirming Ron's unwavering commitment to liberty, something I don't need to be convinced of but are an undeniable comfort all the same.
My admonishment that those who ought to know better who are putting forth the idea that Ron Paul has sold out his supporters are damaging the liberty community is not made lightly. I visit any number of sites, blogs and journals on a daily basis, and there's an unmistakable feeling of sadness and betrayal permeating a lot of these. Again and again I hear the recurrent sentiment that people feel like they've been kicked in the stomach, have been betrayed, or are simply immobilized from confusion over this situation. I don't believe in initiating force, of course, but I find myself feeling the impulse to give these folks a good shake or even a (figurative) slap to snap out of it, as Cher administered to Nicolas Cage in the film Moonstruck. I recognize this gloomy miasma of doubt and emptiness that's affecting people, and I can assure you that it's a contrivance. It's the mark of the Cabal's influence; the feeling is as distinctive as a bad odor. We can throw it off and laugh in their faces...if we really want to.
Have we all not been saying for ages that as far as Ron Paul's role in the movement to reclaim and restore our liberties as Americans that he is only a vessel to help carry the message? Further, that it's the message of liberty, not the man, that's central here? Well, now is the very worst time to be sidelined, distracted or dispirited by recent events, unsettling as they are! In fact, isn't it abundantly clear that allowing that message to be slowed or halted is just what the Establishment wants to happen and plays directly into their hands? This is no time for moping around, passively waiting for Ron Paul to act as some Big Kahuna who we need to tell us what to do. No, if anything now is the time to accelerate our efforts to promote liberty and the rest of Dr. Paul's message that's awakened so many people from their apathy, to put our money where our mouths are and act with the same consistency he's shown to be so effective in keeping that dynamic message of genuine change for the better alive and thriving.
If we act contrary to our own words we will only diminish them. How many articles, how many blog posts, how many songs and stories have been written and sung specifically about Ron Paul and his commitment to the cause of liberty, of reclaiming our rights and freedoms so uniquely American in character? Every day that goes by without our standing by them dishonors them, dishonors us, and dishonors Dr. Paul. This is the time for action...to accelerate our efforts with redoubled intent. My most recent article, The 'Anyone But Obama' Trap, was serendipitously published one day before this whole brouhaha began, and I'm glad of that. I meant every word I wrote then, and I stand by them now. I'm putting much of my limited energy into completing my own project to restore my liberty and free me from disability induced housebound confinement that will enable me to join all my friends, brothers, and sisters in Liberty in Tampa in August for the peaceful stand against the destructive Establishment at the RNC. I've even made the most effective offer I can to help that along, and if it succeeds, I'm eager to cover the whole thing in this column for ADH with the photos, videos and interviews I'll be able to obtain if I'm there in person instead of stuck behind this desk in my home.
You'll notice I've paid scant attention to Rand Paul's actions this week, that's because for the moment at least he's made himself irrelevant to our goals. He has plenty of opportunity to prove himself...or disprove himself...as a supporter of liberty in the future, but right now I'm not wasting my energy on him. He's become a nonentity in our mission for now, and while I hope he can redeem himself, the fact is that he's alienated an awful lot of people this week, my friend Adam House of the Combat Veterans for Ron Paul for one. I'll add my caution for strong language in his piece, and while not for the fainthearted, it's a sincere appraisal of Rand Paul that's shared by many. Good luck, Rand...you'll need it.
Returning to the Buffalo Springfield song I referenced at the beginning of this essay: yes indeed, something's happening here, and what it is ain't exactly clear. That's merely a caution, though, and a reminder for us all to be mindful of our surroundings and situationally aware as we proceed at flank speed toward our goal: restoring our liberties, insisting on sound money and a noninterventionist foreign policy for America, just as our friend and standard bearer of the liberty movement, Dr. Ron Paul, has wanted for all of us all along.