Friday, May 21, 2010

Fatal Purity: The Paulites' Unserious Politics

In May of 2010 the Republican endorsed candidate for senate in a Southern state was compelled through his own rigid ideology and incompetence to issue a press release declaring that under no circumstances would he vote to repeal the landmark Civil Rights Act of 1964 or 1965 should he win elected office. Welcome to the loony, paranoid and cultish world of Ron (pere) and Rand (fils) Paul. This is what one gets when one plays at politics; when one would rather lose being pure than win by compromising; when one's politics is simply not serious. MC has had all it can stand.

Let's remember that the infiltration of the Paulites into the Republican Party started long before the advent of the Tea Party movement. The forward guard of the Paulites were thus well positioned to exploit the genuine grievances that undergird the Tea Party movement. The two, however, are by no means congruent.

Do most Tea Partiers support legalized prostitution and drugs? Do most of them believe the Federal Reserve was involved in Watergate? Do most of them believe that all US military forces around the world should be withdrawn at once? Do most of them see Jewish cabals ("banksters" and the ever available term of opprobrium "neocons") at every turn?

To ask such questions is to have your answer. Try imagining asking those questions to any type of Republican. Again, one has their answer.

So who are these people and why are they making a hash of the Republican Party? Many of them in Minnesota came into the party over the Iraq war. They opposed it. Fine. Sorry that the surge worked and all that but, still, MC has always thought the GOP much more diverse, tolerant and inclusive than our fraudulent (but not Communist!) Democratic friends.

That said, and the Iraq issue largely moot due to its relatively good outcome, the Paulites are left with the fetid entrails of "libertarianism." This is politics for unserious people. Local candidates here could not get the endorsement of one group unless they supported legalized drugs, free trade with Iran (!) and legalized prostitution. These faux markers of freedom and individual autonomy are positions most people grew out of if, indeed, they ever held them. MC understands this but we are not 17 anymore, as Annie Lennox might put it. We are not oppressed when we can't buy heroin at Walgreens, when we stop at red lights or when we obey validly passed laws.

Lately, as everyone knows by now, Rand Paul could not help himself when asked to give a straight answer about legislation that made this country racially fairer. Instead, as purists do, he had to hem and haw to such a degree that he looked like a racist, which most assuredly he is not. His father, however, is most assuredly anti-semitic and don't try talking MC out this belief.

At any rate, the result of the "Randslide" has been a landslide of hideous, negative and unfounded accusations against the Tea Party movement and, more generally, the Republican Party. Thank you for that, Paulites. The adults will now have to clean up your mess while you sulk about being held accountable for your loonacy. And no, the media isn't fair but if you're just learning that now you're even less serious than we thought.

The Republican Party will survive this disfiguring infestation but only if we insist that our core principles are not amenable to cults and purists. We represent a genuine and desperately needed alternative to the horror show the Democratic party has become in office. The stakes are too high to let those who think getting high is the point of politics to prevail. It is time to put the Paulite children back into the playpen of the Libertarian Party from whence they originally came.

Let the purge begin.


Shamika said...

You side with LBJ on nearly everything. I don't think you are conservative or a Republican.

Bill Jungbauer said...

It is as if you have the blinders of a liberal on. You only see, or recognize, that which you choose to at any given moment. The majority of Libertarian leaning Republicans around you within the party are pro-life and do not want drugs or prostitution legalized and you know this. Also, there are many Ron Paul supporters who disagree with him on foreign policies. Like any candidate, we might agree or disagree with them depending on where they stand on any given issue. They recognize that Roe v. Wade should be repealed as unconstitutional. The right of the states under the 10th Amendment to pass whatever laws they choose is abundantly clear in our Constitution whether it be about drugs, prostitution, abortion and also firearms.

I find it very amusing that you show so little respect for our Constitution. I have personally heard you say that you do not believe the state rights issue to be important, that it is a waste of time.

I also question whether you have an issue with a few or many within our party. You say here "Let the purge begin." Is this another of your flippant quips of the moment? Yesterday you Tweeted, "Talking ideas/political concepts, not individ RP'ers, most of whom I like! GOP is not 4 legalized drugs & prostitution." John, cut the crap and tell us who it is you really want to get rid of.

You write, "MC has always thought the GOP much more diverse, tolerant and inclusive than our fraudulent (but not Communist!) Democratic friends." I must ask if you attended the 2008 Republican State Convention in Rochester? One blog writer penned the phrase, "The GOP eats its young." Is that what you desire of our party? You speak of a tolerant, inclusive party that you want to purge people from. Sounds very hypocritical to me. I picture you praying for the return of Ron Carey!

I would like to suggest that you be less divisive and more willing to get our Republican candidates elected. To alienate the many people who are willing to work hard so that we take back seats this fall is counterproductive. We are all willing to work with you John. Please work with us.

Malzacher/Gilmore said...

We thank our friend Bill for posting his forthright comments.

This is the first time we've been accused of having liberal blinders on so we are pondering that charge and will get back to our readers. At first blush, we think the charge is without merit. Call us crazy, we who started "Minnesota Conservatives."

We have never dismissed state's rights. Bill might be referring to the 10th Amendment argument and MC believes the argument is, well, dead. MC sees politicians gin up this argument to make cheap points. Any serious student of the law knows not much will come from it. Still, there are those who send out fund raising letters thumping the 10th Amendment tub. MC finds this not honest.

MC doesn't want to get rid of people. MC refuses, thank you, to let the Republican Party be colonized by Libertarians. Isn't there a Libertarian Party? Why, yes, there is. And L. Ron Paul was its endorsed candidate for President in 1996. We're pretty sure it is not us who is missing the point.

We also think our friend Bill meant to reference the 2006 convention in Rochester, not 2008. Yes, one half of MC did attend and as campaign manager for BDW. Do we really have to prove our bona fides in this regard? If so, allow us to suggest immodestly that we make the grade.

Allow us also to say that at the RNC in 2008 both halves of MC spent a great deal of time with the Ron Paul delegates. We found them to a person intelligent, fun, sometimes batshit crazy but clearly a part of a changing GOP. We had no fear. We really don't just talk the talk.

We must note that Mr. Bill nowhere mentions the trigger of our blog post: father and son Pauls. Why that is we don't know but our simple point was that any Libertarian trying to make the GOP into Libertarian Party should take a hike. We haven't seen where Bill has pointed out our error in this regard. Rand Paul has come across as an idiot and a fool largely because of his Libertarian ideology. Whether or not Bill or other local "in liberty" types agree or not, the positions articulated in the blog that Ron and Rand hold are not wrong. Sorry about facts being stubborn things.

MC thanks Bill for the amusing image of us praying for the return of Ron Carey. Anyone who knows us necessarily gets a hearty laugh out of that. Including present RPM leadership, who we think very highly of and for all the right reasons: they are doing their jobs!

MC voted to have the Liberty Caucus be an affiliate of the RPM but only because they said they would follow and do agree with our platform. That was enough.

With the advent of Rand Paul, however, we make no apologies in defending Republicans. The burden is on the liberty people to prove they are with us, not against us from inside.

MC wants Republicans to win; not closeted Libertarians. If Bill agrees, there is no problem. If he does, then our post is timely and accurate.

Again, we thank Bill for taking the time to comment.

Anonymous said...

Y'all are making my head hurt. I'm trying to follow the logic, or the rant, or the practical political implications, but I just can't. Maybe taking them one at a time...

1. Rand Paul fell into the typical liberal trap of believing that the media would deal fairly and honestly with him, and that they wanted an honest, thinking answer to their question. Every Republican of any stripe has to learn this and, it seems, re-learn it many times over. The ONLY thing these folks want is something they can twist to your political detriment and, failing that, they will make it up. Rand Paul's mistake was he gave the right answer to the wrong person.

2. To contend that this honest answer somehow implies that Pere or Fil Paul are "unserious" or would rather "lose pure than win" are leaps of logic I cannot make, nor IMHO should you. And I will point out that the GOP has had this schism long before the Paulites organized for the 2008 season. I don't believe we make them into pragmatists by assuming that their most outrageous ideas are universally shared among them. That is, after all, what the major media is happy to do for the GOP, for free; I see no need to help them.

3. If you are going to defend the Paulites, it would be best to do so based on the Liberty Caucus and its benefits to the Party, rather than for the way they were "mistreated" at the 2008 Convention. There, they had a determined and well-organized effort to "hijack" the convention to their own ends, and the fractiousness came when the clear and clearly-followed rules got in their way. Could it have been handled better? Perhaps, but remember it takes two sides to make a peace, and only one side to make a war.

4. You want to "purge" the libertarians, but you like the Liberty Caucus being part of the Party. You think we are tolerant, big-tent and practical, but you insist that our core principles exclude libertarians. You think mainstream libertarian ideas about states' rights, fiscal responsibility, etc. are great but we have to wall off ALL libertarians in their own crackpot party. Pick a side!

5. You said the Liberty Caucus is OK because they support our Platform. Have you noticed how much they have altered our Platform in the last two cycles? You cannot in one breath imply that most of their ideas are out of the mainstream of GOP thought and then embrace those ideas that are part of that "mainstream" GOP platform as the yardstick.

My inclination is to find common cause with Libertarians, Paul supporters, homegrown GOP "purists" and "loonies" because it makes simple, practical politics. Heck, if Democrats purged all the loonies from their party there would be nobody left. If you don't like some of their ideas, then sell them YOUR ideas, or get enough of the rest of us to agree with you to shut them up (at least until after the election). It's harder that way, but that's what we have to do, because they're willing to actually work for their point of view.

You're never going to stop the Democrat propaganda machine from saying bad things about one "Republican" and implying it is true of all Republicans. They will do it even if every one of us were as brilliant, well-spoken and wise as you are. Would you like to criticize Rand Paul and help them, or defend him and try to blunt their attack, or just be a "pure" Republican and lose that Senate seat?

J. Ewing

Malzacher/Gilmore said...

MC appreciates Mr. Ewing's thoughtful comments. All blogs should have such readers; we find ourselves improved after reading and posting them. Here, however, we can't agree with much
of what he has to say for we think he's missed our essential point. We'll follow his numbering
for ease of reading; we wouldn't want his head to hurt any more than it apparently already is.

1. Ewing blames the media. That effectively is what he claims in this paragraph. MC can't
agree. We blame the speaker. How hard is that? Ewing stretches to exonerate Rand. MC
holds Rand accountable. Readers can decide which approach is best.

2. Ewing continues to blame the media here and suggests that Rand's "honest" answer
is somehow serious. Or MC is wrong for suggesting it is unserious. But It is. It is unserious because this candidate has made a fool of himself; amateur hour. Ewing is blind to the fact that here is a high profile Republican equivocating about the Civil Rights Act(s)! Only cult-like devotion to Libertarian nonsense can explain this but it doesn't undo the damage. As for the schism Ewing refers to, we don't follow and invite him to explain further.

3. MC finds itself in complete agreement with Mr. Ewing in this paragraph, though he should
get ready for thin-skinned Paulites to come after him. Maybe an alienated Paulite can giggle about it on her Facebook page?

4. We're agog that Ewing thinks MC hasn't picked a side. Good grief. Libertarian principles have always informed the GOP. Paulism has not. We're hoping Ewing can discern the difference between the two. (Hint: Civil Rights Acts)

5. Delegates, not caucuses, have changed the platform of the RPM. MC thinks it's a hash anyway and we should have a few guiding principles and leave it at that, as our friend Joey Gerdin has advocated for almost ever. Nowhere did MC say "most" of their ideas are out of the mainstream. We wish Mr. Ewing
with stick the the Pauls, the Pauls that appall.

In the paragraph that follows, Ewing suggests we make common cause with the Paulites. He needs to re-read our post. MC has done that for years, thank you.

Ewing ends by blaming the media and then us. He couldn't be more wrong: MC wants Republicans to win. The Paulites' fringe ideas are an impediment to that goal.

We thank him nonetheless for taking the time to comment.

Bill Jungbauer said...

Here you are again trying to have it both ways, “We have never dismissed states rights but the 10th amendment argument is dead.” If you look into the 10th amendment movement on the national level, you will see that it has been building momentum for several years now. Arizona has declared its constitutional right to join with two thirds of the states to abolish the federal government and create a new one. Tennessee and Montana have both passed legislation declaring that any firearm or ammunition made and kept within their borders exempt from federal firearms laws. These are just a few examples of what has been a growing national movement. At least a dozen states at present have passed legislation recognizing their 10th amendment rights.

Here in Minnesota, as I have campaigned for office speaking with teachers, the majority of which oppose no-child-left-behind as an unfunded federal mandate. We were quite happy here with a .10 blood alcohol content as a limit for drunk driving, yet we as a state were threatened with having federal transportation funding withheld if it was not changed to .08. You may see candidates seeking office as panderers using the 10th amendment as a tool to gain votes, but as the federal bureaucracy continues to grow and impose its unconstitutional mandates and power on the states, there will be an ever growing need to stand up to them. Its great that many candidates are recognizing this. Despite this, we have a liberal/socialist majority within our state legislature hindering, if not outright castrating, any efforts on the part of those who wish to address the issue as it pertains to Minnesota.

You write, “ MC doesn't want to get rid of people.” Yet you say, “Let the purge begin.” What is going to be John? You can't have it both ways. To reference your argument for an open, inclusive party where we all support the endorsed candidate wherever they may be geographically, I must point out to you that both Rand and Ron are endorsed Republican candidates. Remember, Ron Paul is a U.S Representative serving his tenth term in Congress as a Republican. Does he not, as an endorsed Republican deserve our support?
The 2006 state convention was held at the Minneapolis Convention Center. The 2008 state convention was in Rochester. Remember how a 10 term congressman and presidential candidate was not allowed entry onto the convention floor to speak? How he had to address his supporters outside in the park? Thank you Ron Cary.

You speak quite often about compromise, I ask myself, would Ronald Reagan compromise? No. He would stand on principle. Here is a good Reagan quote for you, “I believe the very heart and soul of conservatism is libertarianism.”

I have no need to address your opinion of Ron and Rand. The point of my previous comment is your back and forth, have it both ways, purge the party yet we need to be an inclusive, big tent organization. As to my reference to Ron Carey, he did what you speak of, shut out a large group of people willing to work hard during the 2008 election cycle. I admit there was a small fringe, and as you say, “batshit crazy, element present in 2008. The people who have stuck around, ran and won leadership positions within the party, and are working hard today should be given plenty of credit. The fringe is gone but many great people have stuck around. We are much better off having them with us rather than with the DFL or Libertarian parties working against the GOP.

As to our present party leadership, I am happy and proud to be working with them and being one of them. In contrast to 2008, we are now an inclusive, transparent organization willing to work with, and listen to an energized grassroots.

Malzacher/Gilmore said...

MC doesn't quite know what to say in response to the many issues, most quite far from our original blog post, and so we will thank Bill for his additional comments.

As for the 10th amendment, one half of MC is an attorney. It was from that perspective the comment was made that it is more or less dead as a matter of Constitutional law. One can read the case law for themselves if they wish. In spirit MC wishes it were otherwise but we're nothing if not pragmatic.

Finally, it is Rand Paul who is causing all of this back and forth. He couldn't support the Civil Rights Acts of 1964 and 1965 without some tendentious lecturing on the finer points of libertarianism? Now he has canceled his appearance on Meet The Press. Good, we guess. But let's not forget who got us into this mess. It wasn't Republicans or conservatives. It was the libertarians, who pretty much think they know more about authentic freedom than the rest of us. MC refuses to grant that premise.

Anonymous said...

The schism to which I referred was the old one about whether it is better to compromise principle to win, or to stand firmly on principle and lose. I have always rejected that false choice; I claim it is best to stand on principle and win, especially since without winning there is nothing and in fact less than nothing. Letting the Democrat win not only doesn't advance the conservative agenda, it damages it. To quote countless others, "How's that Hope and Change workin' out for ya?" President McCain would have been a better choice, as would Senator Coleman. Both lost, I believe, because of that false choice.

Of course I blame the media. Whom else can you blame? Rand Paul gave the thoughtful, principled answer to the question. Do you expect him to forsake his (libertarian) principles for political expediency? Do you honestly expect that the media will report both sides of this story fairly, regardless of anything Mr. Paul has said or will say?

If you wish to criticize either of the honorable gentlemen for some of their more wacky ideas, feel free, but do not stretch that condemnation to all the Republican supporters of either, nor to libertarians in general. You cannot have a big tent party and not have at least part of it look like a clown circus. If the point is winning elections, then you have to accept as many people as you can convince of the rightness of some of your ideas while overlooking the wrongness of some of theirs. That's the problem, by the way, with just a few simple principles as the guiding and unifying statements of party preference. Mr. Paul's policy prescriptions are firmly rooted in the same libertarian principles that (you say) inform yours, yet I suspect they are vastly different. The platform reflects those policy choices, not necessarily the underlying principles.

Again, pick a side. Either you want principled conservatives-- "Republican enough"-- to win, or you don't. The Pauls are Republican enough to secure the nomination, and principled enough to be "exposed" as such by the media. That doesn't mean the media will treat them fairly; it never does. We ought to all be on the right side.

J. Ewing

Kathie R said...

Bill and I have long discussed the 2008 convention. When I reminded him that it was not the Republican Party that went on the attack against the Paulites, and why did he think we should just roll over and let those who advocated the takeover of the party by any means possible, including lying and cheating, hijack our convention and especially the state central committee, his amazing reply was that 2 wrongs don't make a right. In other words, we were at fault because we chose a vigorous defense instead of capitulation. We're bein taken to task because the delegates from most of the BPOUs chose to keep the Party in Republican hands instead of handing it to the hard core libertarians. Jerry's right, we all ought to be on the same side. Too bad some of the hard core libertarians don't feel that way.

Anonymous said...

I occasionally chide these high-mountain conservatives-- that is, those who see themselves at the pinnacle of conservatism, breathing its pure air, unwilling to descend and attend to practical matters-- saying "give the rest of us a place to stand with you." We'll agree on many things. Don't refuse to support a Republican candidate-- the only marginally acceptable one with a chance to win-- because of one issue or one vote. Would you rather have had 66% conservative Senator Norm Coleman or 6% conservative Senator Al Franken, if you had been thinking in practical terms? If 60, 70, or 90% of Republican activists think that candidate is good enough, what makes you right and them wrong? And even if you ARE right, are you going to vote against your own best interests? How commonsense conservative is that?

J. Ewing

MikeWBL said...

I would like to thank MC for boldly & courageously touching the 3rd rail in the RPM.

We Republican, Tea Party supporters, constitutional conservatives and followers of our Founding Fathers agree with 85% of the libertarian agenda. So why does Ron & Rand Paul focus on the 15% that separates us? It makes no logical sense when there is so much agreement. So why are the Paulites focusing on what separates us rather than what binds us together?

I do not have a logical or rational question to this rhetorical question.

Anonymous said...

I was looking for a coalition of MN Conservatives in the South metro area, and this blog came up. Why, I cannot fathom.

After reading just TWO posts on this blog, I realize that only in left/liberal/maoist Minnesota, could ANYONE with as liberal and perverted ideas as you, along with your ad hominem character assassination of one of the few SANE elected officials since before JF Kennedy [Rep. Ron Paul] even BEGIN TO DREAM of calling themselves a 'conservative.'

It would appear that the only thing you wish to conserve is the crappy politics of 1960's Farm Labor, liberal touchy-feely socialist party of the USA Bolshevism, that first launched the salvos of destruction of this once-great land, by enacting such heinous legislation as the Civil Wrongs Act, and the 1965 Immigration Reform Act- both of which owe much of their evil to that American traitor, the arch-bastard, HHH- whom I pray is rotting forever in hell with his drunken compatriot, Teddy 'Chappaquiddick' Kennedy..

Thanks for pretending to be conservative. I'd rather know my enemy for the atheist a-hole he is, than pretend to be MN nice to such a charlatan as you.... imagine if I WEREN'T a man of God, how upset I'd feel!

- Fr. John