Those racist, crazy 1990s Ron Paul newsletters? He signed off on every single one, associates say

“It was his newsletter, and it was under his name, so he always got to see the final product...He would proof it." Renae Hathway, a former secretary in Ron Paul’s company and former supporter of the Texas congressman, in the Washington Post today about those wacky racist newsletters previously mentioned here on Boing Boing.


    1. Can I question the idea that these newsletters are proof Ron Paul is a racist without being automatically assigned the role of “apologist”?

      1. Only people who defend Ron Paul or his ideas would be apologists hence the definition: a person who makes a defense in speech or writing of a belief, idea, etc.

        1.  I see; you are saying one can’t distinguish between fairness and partisanship.  To question the validity of an attack is the same as defending.

          I disagree –  but OK, I understand your point.  If’n yer not with us, yer’n aginst us!

          1. Unless Ron Paul himself is a political party, that’s not what he said at all.  Not even close.  Believe it or not, there exist Republicans and even Libertarians who are not bigoted pieces of shit.

      2. Can I question the idea that these newsletters are proof Ron Paul is a racist without being automatically assigned the role of “apologist”?

        If you could come up with a counter-argument that doesn’t involve a vague gut feeling or an already-disproven talking point from his astroturf army. Otherwise, I’m afraid that apologist sticks.

        1. Well, most of my objection to this has already been covered – the total sum of evidence that Ron Paul is a racist appears to be old race-baiting newsletters that he’s apologized for and says don’t reflect his actual current views. 

          There’s at least as much evidence that he’s not a racist – for every race-baiting line you’ve got, there’s at least one thing he’s said, done or written that clearly supports a philosophy of racial equality.

          And nearly everyone in the argument decided their position before they saw any evidence, and pretty clearly would say the man is (or isn’t) a green martian if they thought I might believe them.  Two crowds of partisan loons shouting at each other for the most part.

          If you think that’s an “already disproven talking point” I guess you’ll have to keep me in the apologist box.

          You would be foolish to categorize me as a racist, though.

          1. I do understand that back then he was just a naive young lad of 57 or so and…

            How much more maturing do you need once you hit the late 50’s? 

            I remember the 1990’s, as well as the 1980’s and 70’s.  It was easier to be racist then, it wasn’t as frowned upon.  It still wasn’t right. 

          2. “You would be foolish to categorize me as a racist, though.”
            You only support segregationists. I’d classify as more willfully ignorant than racist.

          3. The statement RP made in 2008:

            I have never uttered such words and denounce such small-minded thoughts.

            In fact, I have always agreed with Martin Luther King, Jr. that we should only be concerned with the content of a person’s character, not the color of their skin. As I stated on the floor of the U.S. House on April 20, 1999: “I rise in great respect for the courage and high ideals of Rosa Parks who stood steadfastly for the rights of individuals against unjust laws and oppressive governmental policies.”

            When I was out of Congress and practicing medicine full-time, a newsletter was published under my name that I did not edit. Several writers contributed to the product. For over a decade, I have publicly taken moral responsibility for not paying closer attention to what went out under my name.

        1. I read a lot of history and a fair amount of racist claptrap, but I haven’t read Der Sturmer.  Have you read In The Garden of Beasts?

          It’s a little dry if you aren’t used to reading histories, but a fascinating portrayal of Germany’s descent into a racist mania.

  1. The paultard bucket of excuses, obfuscation and denial is starting to run dry. The main interest for me at this point is seeing how they’ll try to spin this story! I’m gonna go with the tried and true “smear the messenger” tactic if I had to guess …

  2. The Paul supporter response will, as always, be something along the lines of “these are just lies perpetrated by the mainstream media to keep Paul from being a viable candidate because he would upset the status quo and they don’t like guys who rock the boat”

    It’s just like rationalizing any other cult following. Paul may have some good ideas, but they’re not worth all the batshit crazy that comes along with them.

    1. why is the batshit crazy that we know about ronpaul worse than the batshit crazy we don’t (or do) know about newt or mitt…or obama, as it turns out?

      1. The actual “knowing” part is pretty damn important.
        There’s plenty of batshit crazy in Mitt and Newt too.
        Obama, not really any batshit crazy; some unmet expectations and disappointments, but he’s not done anything batshit crazy.

        That’s beside the point though, your excuse for Paul’s crazy is “the other GOP candidates are crazy too”? Is this a preschool playground? I’m rubber you’re glue?

        1. If it was only “preschool playground,” as you condescend, law schools wouldn’t have to teach “tu quoque,” would they?

          1. Hey, go ahead and keep defending him.
            Your blind following and absurd rationalization only further illustrate the rising level of guano surrounding the man.

            A friend of mine made a bit of a metaphor last night that we have been trying to fix the leak in the roof with silly putty, and it’s just covering up the larger problem and not actually making anything better. By voting for Ron Paul, we’d basically just be taking a wrecking ball to the house to fix the leak. I suppose he has a point.

            If nothing else, Ron Paul as president would drive this country so far backwards that we would have no choice but to just rebuild everything from the ground up. If you’re willing to sacrifice 4 years for the long shot of there being some tiny possibility it may be possible to rebuild from the disaster Paul would leave behind…then I guess, vote for him.

          2. Actually, I’d like to reply to Quentin before.

            I don’t know, sometimes it seems to me that politicians argue about who set the house on fire, while one of them wants to put it out with a machine gun, the other one wants to put it out with gasoline, and I’m standing there with a bucket of water, and they look at me like I’m the one that’s crazy.

            Ron Paul signed off on racist newsletters in the 1990s.  Yes.  He should be – and is – condemned for that.

            But he’s the only (barely) viable candidate who has a strong civil liberties record – and I include the incumbent.  Equal rights under the law is far more important than anything else when combatting racism.  Take Eisenhower, for example.  The guy wasn’t known particularly for civil rights and civil liberties, (and was certainly a man of his time regarding racism) but after Brown v. Board, he said: “The Supreme Court has spoken and I am sworn to uphold the
            constitutional processes in this country; and I will obey.”

            And obey he did. 

            Racism is a personal failing.  And I don’t forgive or forget.  There’s much about Ron Paul I don’t like.  Sadly, however, I feel that civil liberties trump all other issues of our day, and he is still the only candidate out there who still has a slim shot who has a strong record.

          3. Sadly, however, I feel that civil liberties trump all other issues of our day, and he is still the only candidate out there who still has a slim shot who has a strong record.

            How you can talk about civil liberties as being possible in the context of extant racism is baffling to me. It appears that what you’ve just said is that your civil liberties matter.

          4. Brian- there is literally a century and a half of civil rights progress that would disappear if Paul had his way on this state’s rights stuff.  Not that he every would have his way, but still.  

            You cannot support both Paul’s positions on state’s rights and the role of the Federal government, and civil liberties.  They just aren’t compatible.  And you can see that when you hear him speak about things like the Civil Rights Act.

          5. “who has a strong civil liberties record”

            Segregation, would illegalize homosexuality, pro-life, anti-gay marriage. Right.

        2. I’m sorry, but campaigning as a limiter on executive authority then doing everything in his power to expand executive authority, I’d consider that pretty batshit crazy.  I mean, it’s not “amusing” crazy, like “earth was created 6000 years ago” but really “scary” crazy. 

      2. I don’t think it’s batshit craziness from him or any of them.  They all seem perfectly sane.  It’s a fairly good marker for where they stand ideologically though.  

        And I think this story reveals something about Paul that a lot of his younger supporters or possible supporters may not have quite understood.  He’s not coming from the same place on most issues as his supporters, he’s coming at it from a place that’s really really different.  And really really bad.

          1. Because addressing a fact about one candidate by imagining things about other candidates is a derailment. If you have statements from Obama and Romney on the same issue, that would be a reasonable, on-topic comparison;  “why is the batshit crazy that we know about ronpaul worse than the batshit crazy we don’t (or do) know about newt or mitt…or obama, as it turns out?” is just trying to jerk the thread away from its actual topic.

      1. Hell, they’re all disgruntled. I ain’t running no damn daisy farm. My motto is “Do it my way or watch your butt!” 

        1. I wonder if happy employees are gruntled at some point.  And  is it the gruntling or the removal of the gruntling status that makes them disgruntled?

      1. “my cynical brain is telling me to vote for the person who deserves it least.”
        Fine, but don’t expect anyone to respect you more for it, or be interested in your duller decisions.

  3. Well, it’s BOTH the liberal media and disgruntled employees, according to the third (at the moment) comment on the Post site:

    “This article needed a couple more disgruntled former employees and a few more anonymous sources. Or maybe this was supposed to have gone to the National Enquirer.”They’re adapting.

    1. Objectively more, because he would not free those incarcerated in state prisons (Federal is what, 5-10%?) and would work to disassemble civil rights legislation and re-enable segregation under the guise of “property rights”.

  4. I didn’t have a problem with him wanting to dismantle half the government and introduce a parallel currency, but now that I know he was definitely signing off on bizarre  newsletters I can’t support him.

    1. He doesn’t support the content in such newsletters, and now disavows them. Look into him for what he is not what others say he is.

  5. I don’t find myself agreeing with Castro that often but his recent criticism of the Presidential race is right on the money. And that’s not even a pun.
    Sure here in Spain they’re deplorable populist panderers, and in my home country of Ireland they’re spineless subservient toadies of the European bankers but it pales in comparison to the US politicians who bend over backwards to display righteous ignorance as a trait to be proud of.
    What did we do to deserve these people? It seems voting against them just isn’t enough.


      1. Thank you for the link to the Rodney King riot newsletter.  I just read the whole thing and there’s plenty of race-baiting and fear-mongering in there.

        But I see nothing that would lead me to believe that Ron Paul is a racist.

        What I see is a newsletter targeted at racists.

        1. You’re being disingenuous, because as you know, the site links to pages and pages of more scans.  

          What I see is a newsletter targeted at racists.

          Ah, I see.  Kinda like Klan rallies were organized for racists, but not by racists.

          See the posts about apologists above.

          No evidence will ever be enough for fanatics.


          “It is the hip-hop thing to do among the urban youth who play unsuspecting whites like pianos. The youth simply walk up to a car they like, pull a gun, tell the family to get out, steal their jewelry and wallets, and take the car to wreck. Such actions have ballooned in the recent months.
          In the old days, average people could avoid such youth by staying out of bad neighborhoods. Empowered by media, police, and political complicity, however, the youth now roam everywhere looking for cars to steal and people to rob.
          What can you do? More and more Americans are carrying a gun in the car. An ex-cop I know advises that if you have to use a gun on a youth, you should leave the scene immediately, disposing of the wiped off gun as soon as possible. Such a gun cannot, of course, be registered to you, but one bought privately (through the classifieds, for example).
          I frankly don’t know what to make of such advice, but even in my little town of Lake Jackson, Texas, I’ve urged everyone in my family to know how to use a gun in self defense. For the animals are coming.”

    1. Hey, sometimes it takes a while to get through all the programming and brainwashing being in a cult offers, especially without outside help.

  6. As someone who was hoping Ron Paul would win the GOP primary, this definitely strikes me as damning news. I had heard Paul wasn’t the one who wrote the newsletters, but if he personally signed off on them, then it becomes very difficult to argue that he wasn’t forwarding racist ideas two decades ago.

    Granted, the other GOP candidates are forwarding racist ideas right now, while Ron Paul is talking about the systemic racism in things like the death penalty and the drug war, so I still hope Ron Paul wins the GOP nomination (unlikely, I know). But if I had to choose between him and Obama, my opinion of Ron Paul has definitely been lowered a notch.

    1. I’m gonna guess that the people who mentioned to you that Paul didn’t write them didn’t bother to mention that the guy who did write them was working as Paul’s Chief of Staff?

      1. He’s got a lot of pretty nasty people on staff, ranging from the ever nutty Lew Rockwell, through to Anti-gay campaigners and Stormfront organizers.

      2. The person who wrote the worst of the newsletters, James Powell, has no close ties to Paul.

        Lew Rockwell was Paul’s chief of staff in the late 70s, and editor of the newsletter, but they have not worked together since the 90s.

  7. EDIT – This comment is in reply to Aaron Briggs’s comment which I’ll copy below this sentance, but I put it in the wrong post-box, mea culpa.

    “Why not just post the FULL contents of the newsletter and let the people decide how much they like them, instead of relying on biased journalists to tell us what to think about them.

    Most of the remarks in the newsletters were just racial observations, not judgements. Racism is” the belief that inherent different traits in human racial groups justify discrimination”. Do you see any of that in the newsletter quotes?”

    Reply to Aaron as follows –

    I’m sorry, what? That’s just making flimsy excuses.

    First, these observations are often nothing more than implicit racial slurs couched in made up numbers – for example, “Only 5% of blacks have sensible political opinions”,(Oh yes, I’m sure we all saw the scientific study for that one) or when he “agreed” with Al Sharpton that New york should be renamed and reclaimed for black people, questioning if a better name couldn’t be found, suggesting “Welfaria? Zooville? Rapetown? Dirtburg? Lazyopolis?”

    Or, maybe it was when essentially called Martin Luther King Jr a violent, communist gay pedophile?

    Or maybe it was just observation when he implied that all black people are, in fact, terrorists hell bent on destroying America? Or when he outright opined that the LA riots only stopped because the black people had to go pick up their welfare cheques?

    Oh, I know, how about when he said discrimination based on race, sex, sexual preference, religion, or whatever other reason is not only acceptable, but a natural and constitutional right?

    Or was it when he openly wondered what would happen if one was to create a whites-only caucus?

    Or maybe it’s the one – with his name and signature on the actual article – where he claims the existence of a “federal-homosexual cover-up on AIDS”, which apparently his medical training allowed him to see through. Or when he suggested that aids patients be banned from eating in resturants, or that they shouldn’t be allowed to operate machinery because of mental impairment?

    Yeah, all just observations, all right. And yes, in answer to your question, I did read the newsletters for myself. And it’s a hell of a lot more damning than any article about the newsletters, by the Mainstream Media, or by more independent sources such as the very article we’re commenting on.

  8. Just to play devils advocate, If Ron Paul believes in free speech and freedom of thought and all that, wouldn’t censoring a writer who holds racist views that he may or may not hold himself, make him an epic hypocrite?

    1. Not really, because he doesn’t have to censor the guy. Ron could have simply exercised his right to not have the materiel printed in his newsletters, that doesn’t stop the guy saying it, or printing it elsewhere.

      Telling the person “No, I’m not going to print this, take it elsewhere” isn’t censorship, it’s simply saying “I don’t want a part in this, and I don’t want to have what you say in a newsletter with my name and endorsement on it.”

        1. I still have respect for the guy, but I have respect more for things he does or has done, rather than overall. For just two examples, I respect his determination, I respect his willingness to stand up and say something when he thinks it is wrong. I respect that he’s one of the few genuinely nice people in politics.

          That said, I can’t say I’d vote for the guy. Because often when he’s standing up and saying he believes something is wrong, and he’s willing to fight for it, it’s something like his opposition to the civil rights act, or against gay rights, or other such things. We simply do not agree enough for me to really support the guy, though I do respect some parts of his conduct and attitude.

  9. Consider this: Let’s say he signed off not knowing there was racist content therein; (I know that is a stretch but bare with me), would you want a President who signs off on bills and executive orders with the same lack of attention to detail?

    1. “Hey honey, here’s the yearly Christmas letter I wrote, sign it.”
      “Hey honey, here’s the divorce papers, sign it.”

      One of these will probably get more attention than the other.  

      1. A family Christmas letter might not get that much attention, but a newsletter going out under your personal brand, with your name on it, that people are paying you for, that’s something you’d want to pay close attention to, particularly if you’re in politics, or considering going into politics – after all, if you sign off on someone saying nasty shit in them, then you’re able to be held responsible – just like if you sign a contract you didn’t read.

        After all, you signed to it, or signed off on it on it, the fact you were stupid enough to not read it is not only nobody else’s fault, but doesn’t absolve you of responsibility.

        1. My reply is directly related to the post above it and addresses that person’s specific complaint against Ron Paul.  I suggest you look up straw man, because you’re not applying the term correctly.  

    2. He is on video stating that he reads them all, and that they are absolutely ESSENTIAL to today’s reality.

  10. If you’ve ever had your thread hijacked by a Ron-Paul supporter, you know how unbelievably fleet-fingered they can be.

  11. Ron Paul is a right-wing liberal. While there’s no doubt little love for his “right-wing” side, my feeling is the left will get a better deal from his liberal side than you will from the other guys in the Republican presidential race (or even from Obama on certain key issues).

    His historical racism is deplorable. If he denounces it and takes steps to promote a free society, I’m willing to put this ugliness aside. I wouldn’t hold it against anyone if they couldn’t, however. Such is the nature of choosing the lesser evil.

    1. Ron Paul is a Constitutionalist.  The Republican establishment hates him with a passion.  In fact, I think the GOP would rather have Obama for another 4 years than Ron Paul.  

      As for denouncing it, he already has.  Many, many, many times over.

      1. He hasn’t denounced anything.  He proudly said that they were his back in 1994 or 96, whenever it was that they first came up during his election back in Texas.  Even said he was going to continue putting them out.

        It’s only 4 years ago, while running nationally for president with a bunch of young twenty-something followers that he suddenly started claiming that someone else put them out or ghost wrote them.  

        Neither of those things in a denouncement.

          1. Here’s an archived story from the Houston Chronicle 1996, when the newsletters first came out during one of Paul’s elections in Texas.  At the time, Paul said he wrote them, defended the contents, and said that he’d continue putting out more of the newsletters.

            Again though, this all changed in 2008, when he was running on the national stage and had all these young supporters with very different views on racism than the Texas voters a decade before had…  That’s when he suddenly remembered that someone else wrote them, and that whole series of related lies.

          2. @twitter-410326822:disqus : “At the time, Paul said he wrote them, defended the contents, and said that he’d continue putting out more of the newsletters.”
            I just read your link.  That’s not in there.  What is in there are lots of quotes from the newsletters.  Sorry to disappoint.

          3. @CW:  As with GJ, your link shows absolutely nothing.  He said he published the newsletter.  That’s not “him defending them”.  The rest of the article is the author saying, “if this, then that, if that, then this”.  Nothing from Mr. Paul himself.

          4. “The rest of the article is the author saying, “if this, then that, if that, then this”.  Nothing from Mr. Paul himself.”

            The interviewer mentioned “facts” from the newsletter and Paul defended the content.

      2. “As for denouncing it, he already has.  Many, many, many times over.”

        He never denounced it. He said it was irrelevant.

    2. He won’t denounce the newsletters, that would be admitting involvement, and so far, he’s been moving away from that.

      Originally, he promoted the newsletters, then he defended them, then he said he’d not written them but took moral responsibility, and didn’t know who wrote them, then he said he never saw them, never read them, and never knew about them till ten years later.

      I’m also cautious of putting him in any broader political category, other than radical right-wing. And not because the Ron Paul crowd on reddit simultaneously claim he’s the only true democrat, republican, libertarian, liberal, conservative, baseball fan, and what have you. It’s mostly because he’s very hard to fit into any other political group besides “Ron and Rand Paul.”

      1. Yes, “liberal” is such a dirty word to the right that they call themselves “libertarians” but, given how oppressive western governments have been getting lately, I think the idea of “liberty” needs a comeback. If common ground can be found between the left and the right, let it be through the idea of freedom.

  12. Let’s see here…

    At a minimum, Ron Paul trusted individuals to write a newsletter under his name and those individuals ended up printing some …err… objectionable material.


    There is a disagreement by those who would know about whether Ron Paul wrote or even knew what was in the letters.  According to the article, Mark Elam, whose company printed the newsletters, said Paul “was a busy man. He was in demand as a speaker; he was traveling around the country. “I just do not believe he was either writing or regularly editing this stuff.’’  Paul was apparently also working full time as an MD at that time.  That Paul would farm this trivial job off to someone else is not an unreasonable conclusion.  

    So, you have to ask your self, WHY you CHOOSE to believe one person over another person.  Since there is a difference of opinion, why do you CHOOSE to believe that Paul personally proofread and signed off on every letter?  There is hearsay on both sides of the issue and you choose to give more weight to one side.  Why is that?  

    You might also want to consider that in Paul’s entire career, the only place this shit has come up is in the newsletters.  Or you may choose to dismiss that as well.

    To those who say, “Whatever….Paul showed bad judgement in letting some asshole write his newsletters, so that means he can’t be trusted to pick a good cabinet as President”, I’ll counter with the following.  Pick your favorite President and I’ll find at least three assholes in his cabinet that he wish he had never hired.  What matters isn’t that the occasional asshole gets through, but what you do with the asshole and the mess he made after he gets found out.

    1. There is hearsay on both sides of the issue and you choose to give more weight to one side.  Why is that?  

      I never liked his policies to begin with, and as far as I’m concerned in my evaluation of his handling of the newsletter issue, the choices boil down to either malice or stupidity. Unlike some, I think it’s less insulting to assume the former rather than the latter. This is especially so when the issue at hand is competent leadership. In other words, the answer to the question you’re asking is that I’m actually giving Ron Paul the benefit of the doubt.

      Fundamentally, his defenders ignore the major objections of his detractors, assuming their criticisms are somehow minor stumbling blocks about specific policies to be brushed aside, rather than major philosophical differences that are all about how this country is supposed to be governed. Objections to Ron Paul aren’t grounded in the issues, they’re grounded in an aversion to what is truly a radical re-imagining of the role of the federal government. I have nothing against radicals, but I don’t support radicalism for its own sake.

      1. Wow, really?  Ron Paul is a strict Constitutionalist.  A Constitutionalist pretty much means that on any given issue, he favors following the Constitution.  Since when is following the Constitution “radical” in any way, shape, or form?

        The left has their view of “How Things Should Be” and is hell bent on making that vision happen regardless of what the Constitution says.

        The right has their view of “How Things Should Be” and is hell bent on making that vision happen regardless of what the Constitution says.

        Ron Paul is saying FU to both the left and the right and telling them both that neither has the right to force their opinions on the other.

        That’s “radical”?

        1. Ron Paul is a strict Constitutionalist. A Constitutionalist pretty much means that on any given issue, he favors following the Constitution. Since when is following the Constitution “radical” in any way, shape, or form?

          No more radical than Biblical literalism. Why on earth would a sane person want to have a society based unchangingly on something that was written more than 200 years ago? When there was slavery. And women couldn’t vote. And a host of other gross violations of human rights. What the hell is so noble about being obsessed with what was mostly a horrible period of human history?

          1. Now that’s a crititique!

            I gotta hand it to you, Antinous, you’re arguing on real issues in your own voice.  Which is rare when people are talking about Ron Paul.

            Edit: The lame disqus thread depth limit keeps me from replying to your other post below. But one of the features of the constitutional limits on Federal power was that individual states could experiment with economic and social policies without dragging down the rest of the union, and citizens could “vote with their feet”. Obviously, this reflects the way the entire setup favors the wealthy, since they were the only ones who could reliably afford to move on a whim.

          2. Why is the age of the document important?  Would you rather live under laws that you approve of that were written  10,000 years ago or laws that you don’t approve of that were written yesterday?  Since when does respect for the Constitution equal “being obsessed with what was mostly a horrible period of human history?”

            Respect for the Constitution (for most people) usually means the desire for limited government, for government to stay the hell out of everyone’s lives, for people not arbitrarily making up new laws that everyone has to suffer under just because they happen to be the majority in power at the time, for a county where everyone is treated equal.

            So the Constitution wasn’t perfect when it was created, so what?  It was pretty damned good.  And, guess what?  It contained within it a method for making it better.  That’s been done a few times over the years.

            If you don’t like the idea of living under a written set of laws, then you’re at the mercy of those in power at the time.  Do you really want that?  Really?

          3. Respect for the Constitution (for most people) usually means the desire for limited government, for government to stay the hell out of everyone’s lives

            Ron Paul’s ‘respect’ for the Constitution seems to consist primarily of wanting government to stay the hell out of States’ ability to interfere in everybody’s lives

            Since when does respect for the Constitution equal “being obsessed with what was mostly a horrible period of human history?”

            Unless I’m grossly mistaken, the intention of the framers of the Constitution was to update society to make it more fair and equitable according to the mores of the day. Transpose Constitutionalist doctrine into the mouths of the framers and they would have been arguing that Magna Carta was good enough in 1215, so it must be good enough today. Originalist arguments are diametrically opposed to the original purpose of the framers.

        2. Paul’s interpretation of the constitution ignores a couple centuries of jurisprudence.  It’s an extreme, and wrong interpretation that’s spent the last century and a half basically limited to a tiny bunch of racists, bound and determined to reconstitute the Confederacy.  

          Seeing that world view treated as somehow legitimate by a bunch of (usually) otherwise decent enough young folks because they have no grasp on history and they like what Paul is saying about weed and war is depressing.

        3. “Ron Paul is a strict Constitutionalist.”

          A meaningless phrase. He doesn’t believe in the separation of Church and State, for example.

          1. He certainly does believe in separation of Church and State, and frequently says so.

            It’s a pretty major issue with him,  and if you believed what you just wrote you should question everything you think you know about the man.

            Damn, now I actually am defending him.  Huh.  Well, for the record, I like Denis Kucinich better.

          2. “He certainly does believe in separation of Church and State, and frequently says so.”

            Paultards, again are poorly informed.

            “The notion of a rigid separation between church and state has no basis in either the text of the Constitution or the writings of our Founding Fathers. On the contrary, our Founders’ political views were strongly informed by their religious beliefs. Certainly the drafters of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, both replete with references to God, would be aghast at the federal government’s hostility to religion. The establishment clause of the First Amendment was simply intended to forbid the creation of an official state church like the Church of England, not to drive religion out of public life. “

    2. Wait, so he was Simultaneously a doctor who was too busy to read the newsletters going out under his name, with his stamp of approval on them, when they were barely pamphlet length, and yet he was also an incredibly busy public speaker at the time, who didn’t have time to read the newsletters…so, which is it? One of those would exclude the other – you can’t be too busy to read the newsletters in two different jobs which by their nature are not conducive to spending much time on the other, simultaneously.

      On top of that, he’d sure as hell read them by 1996, when he spent a good bit of time defending them, and sounding a hell of a lot like he’d written them.

      I’m sorry, the excuse just doesn’t wash. If he’s too busy to read an eight page newsletter that he’s signing off on, which has his name and endorsement, then he’s too busy to be in politics at all, let alone holding down a career as a public speaker, or any of a dozen other things. Not to mention, that would entail him being that busy from 1985, through into the late 90s. Which is impressive, considering that for the end part of that time, I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t even be legally able to practice medicine.

    3. At a minimum, Ron Paul trusted individuals to write a newsletter under his name and those individuals ended up printing some …err… objectionable material.

      Translation: Ron Paul is really the victim here. He trusted people, and they let him down.

      Poor, poor Ron Paul.

  13. I think it’s adorable that everyone gets so worked up…as if it could possibly matter who was president. Changing the butler may change the tone of how the household is run, but not the goals said butler was hired to achieve. The six biggest banks in the country hold assets of roughly 9 trillion dollars together. By contrast the annual U.S. federal budget is 3.5 trillion. You don’t argue with that kind of money. You just can’t.

    “The issue which has swept down the centuries and which will have to be fought sooner or later is The People vs. The Banks.” – Lord Acton

  14. Ron Paul would NEVER lie, except for all the times we have him on tape advocating for his white supremacist screeds.

    1. Why do you keep making these statements without posting links?  I would love to see such a tape.

      Edit- Like, you could have posted this video of him standing in front of a giant confederate flag:!

      The interesting thing about this video, to me, has little to do with racism. It’s that Ron Paul is so obsessed with his economic ideas that he can’t even see the freaking US civil war through any other lens! Watch it and you’ll see…

        1. Yeah, we were sort of playing hopscotch up and down the thread there.  My apologies, I’m trying to wind up some absurd technical problems here so I can go home.

  15. Will we ever see a post here about Ron Paul’s policies? I remember being furious while Obama ran that the right wing never argued against Obama’s policies, choosing instead just to smear him. I don’t see why I shouldn’t feel just as outraged at the lack of analysis of Ron Paul’s policies. Debunk ending the Fed. Debunk ending the war on drugs. Debunk the idea that we shouldn’t bail-out mega-corporations. Debunk ending the wars and bringing our troops home. Argue for the price-fixing of interest rates and devaluation of the dollar. It seems like polices are the least-debated topic each election cycle.

    1. It seems like polices are the least-debated topic each election cycle.

      People would have to do actual research for that.  Ad hominem is easier.

      1. Candidates put out position papers which are, apparently, only ever read by other candidates. But if our representatives don’t even read through the bills that they pass, you can hardly expect the voters to read the positions of their favorite teams chosen candidates.

        1. And that makes it right how?
          Because they don’t do it, that means we shouldn’t either, ergo, Ito’s opinion is invalid.

      2. And when the candidate’s own words are presented, “Nuh uh!” is replied, or the evidence is ignored.

        1. “You know what the answer is? I didn’t write them. didn’t read them at the time and I disavow them. That is the answer.”

          –Ron Paul, shortly before walking out of interview with Gloria Borger

          So yeah, I see your point, what someone actually says and does will obviously be ignored.

      3. Um, you were given links and sources for all sorts of things you asked about before in this thread.  Stuff that you apparently thought was unsupported ad hominem…  but wasn’t.   

    2. You don’t have to go far on this site to find anti-war, or pro-legalization articles.  Or articles about corporate bailouts.  Or any number of other things that Paul promotes.  
      A lot of us agree with Ron Paul on most, if not all of those issues you listed.  But he comes to support those positions for reasons that a lot of us also find abhorrent.

      1. And his “solutions” are counter to the ACTUAL problems that we care about, which require more attention than “DESTROY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT”.

  16. How is this whole “Ron Paul endorsed these newsletters” any different whatsoever to last night’s revelation that Mitt Romney “endorsed” a bad radio ad in Florida against his “knowledge”?

    Come on people – I get there are Paul haters and supporters – but I bet you’re BOTH wrong.

    Xeni, what’s YOUR agenda here? Just out of curiosity.

    1. “Xeni, what’s YOUR agenda here? Just out of curiosity.”

      Always attack, never defend. The mark of any Scientologist.

      Next you’ll be asking her what her “crimes” are!

      1. Wait – so if I were to defend Ron Paul (I’m not – I don’t have a horse in the race), I’m an apologist.

        If I ask the OP to declare her reasons for posting the story, I’m a Scientologist?

        How droll.

        1. “Wait – so if I were to defend Ron Paul (I’m not – I don’t have a horse in the race), I’m an apologist.

          If I ask the OP to declare her reasons for posting the story, I’m a Scientologist?”I was mostly kidding, but it’s okay for you to “not have a horse in the race”, but it’s not ok for Xeni? Why can’t she just be fascinated by the amount of denial that Paul die-hards go through to rationalize the inbred Survivalist and White Supremacists movements, and the contortions they attempt to claim that States Rights are about actual civil liberties, and not about encouraging State oppression and corporate fascism, unhindered by Federal protections?

          1. Meh, it doesn’t “bother” me – I’m sitting here at my desk, ready to go home, catching up on my RSS. 
            There’s bias everywhere; it’s essential as an informed human to identify it and question it.

    2. “I bet you’re BOTH wrong.”

      I respect Paul voters on average much more than mealy-mouthed False Equivalency spouters who find it easier to insult everyone than actually be educated enough to understand ONE side well.

    3. last night’s revelation that Mitt Romney “endorsed” a bad radio ad in Florida against his “knowledge”

      WTF was so “bad” about the attack ad Romney apparently forgot he put his name on? The direct quote from Gingrich was as follows:

      “We should replace bilingual education with immersion in English…so they learn the language of prosperity, not the language of living in a ghetto.”

      (Gingrich subsequently issued an apology in mangled Spanish.)

      What’s your point, that Ron Paul published racist newsletters but Mitt Romney endorsed an ad attacking Newt Gingrich for something he didn’t actually say, except he did, as it turns out, so they’re both the same and that means what Ron Paul published doesn’t matter somehow?

  17. Dinged by the reply limit again.

    CW posted this:

    which links back to this:

    Which is a Rockwell column by Ron Paul in which he explictly endorses the (thoroughly incorrect) idea that the founding fathers never wanted separation of Church and State, they just wanted complete religious tolerance.  A very common view among American fundamentalists ( and former presidents) but completely wrong, as very little research will show – Jefferson and Washington having both left unequivocal writings on the subject.

    So, in 2003 Paul definitely had at least one crazy, historically incorrect idea behind his ongoing opposition to “multiculturalism”.

    Thank you for the information, CW.  I wasn’t aware of that one.

    No thanks for the off-target personal insults, though.

    1. Yeah, Antinous posted that sometime more than a year ago. I was really sad to hear it, it was totally crackpot :(

  18. Well, I’ve got to head for home.  Good night, all.

    I still don’t think Ron Paul is a racist, but I’m tired of being called a “paultard” and a “segregationist” et cetera whenever I question the official party lines or ask for real documentation.

    For the record, I do think I know a little about racism; I’ve got a multi-racial family and have had a few experiences that I hope most of you haven’t.  I can tell the difference between opportunistic race-baiting, racism, racial insensitivity, and plain old boorishness.  For those who can’t, just remember that they are all annoying, but only one of them burns a cross in your yard.

    And while I think I would prefer Ron Paul over most US politicians, I would also prefer having my pinky finger cut off with a rusty saw over a slow sheet-lightning enema.  It’s hardly a ringing endorsement.

  19. Last!

    Seriously, I’m expecting “comments closed” soon.

    Just have to say that grandmother’s boyfriend was Ron Paul’s buddy back when he was first in congress. She started railing against the Social Security payments she was just about to start receiving and could not have survived without. I also heard a lot more racist stuff from her than usual. I do not think this was a coincidence.

    Interestingly, Brazoria County has an interesting history of racial politics from Reconstruction to the 1960s. Brazoria and Galveston were the site of the original Juneteenth. Blacks were registered to vote and remained part of the political process even after reconstruction. Things were far from perfect, there was a “sundown town” in the county, but they were better than a lot of places. This changed in the 1960s when some white populations realized they could use race baiting to their benefit as the white population had increased after WWII as ports and industries there grew.

    Ron Paul moved into this racially charged environment and played it like a fiddle . He had to be the best fiddler ever as he was a Yankee, an outsider from up north.

    I got kin down on the coast been eating this up and voting for Paul for decades. The Newsletters are the tip of the iceberg.

  20. Really, it all comes down to the same thing: “Ron Paul does not believe in x. He does not support x. He simply looks on with huge eyes full of sadness when his deeply-held moral beliefs happen to produce x as a logical, inevitable consequence. You can see he’s hurting, but his principles are so strong that he simply cannot change his mind, regardless of their actual, real-life consequences. Why do you torment him so, that last honest man?”

  21. Ta-Nehisi Coates:

    “All parties agree that Ron Paul is not, personally, racist and that he didn’t write the passages. This is comforting. I am not an anti-Semite. But give me a check to tell Harlem the Jews invented AIDS, and I’ll do it.

    “As I’ve said before, we all must make our calculus in supporting a candidate or even claiming he is “good” for the debate. But it must be an honest calculus. 

    “If you believe that a character who would conspire to profit off of white supremacy, anti-gay bigotry, and anti-Semitism is the best vehicle for convincing the country to end the drug war, to end our romance with interventionism, to encourage serious scrutiny of state violence, at every level, then you should be honest enough to defend that proposition. 

    “What you should not do is claim that Ron Paul “legislated” for Martin Luther King Day, or claim to have intricate knowledge of Ron Paul’s heart, and thus by the harsh accumulation of  evidence, be made to look ridiculous.”

  22. There’s one point to make. This is basically the testimony of one person, Hathaway – along with an anonymous source. Ron Paul has said statements directly contradicting this. So, it’s basically a case of he said, she said.

    The narrative I have read is that he was generally closely involved, and did indeed sign off on a lot of offensive stuff, such as the ridiculous and paranoid stuff about gays and AIDS, and various conspiracy theories.

    However, he was more involved in other things during the two year period during which the most offensive racist newsletters fall, and was not in charge of the day to day operations.

    It would be worth knowing for how long and when Hathaway worked for him to observe the very hands on management.

    Probably the strongest evidence in defense of Paul is the fact that, outside of these newsletters, I never know of a racist word being attributed to him. Why write all sorts of horrid stuff in your public newsletter that has your name up on top, but never utter anything similar on the house floor?

    Lew Rockwell, his former chief of staff and editor-in-chief of the newsletters, and a man who has lent his name and editing to the most popular modern libertarian website, can be found around that time writing similar material:

    As I noted above, especially if you are on the political fringe with a relatively small number of allies to choose from, in can be hard to avoid allying with people who you might disagree with important points on, because you feel the points you agree on are more important.

  23. I’m going to go out on a limb here. Let’s assume that he is a racist bastard who wants to restore Old Dixie.

    Note that I really don’t believe he is; I think the worst scenario is that he flirted with them for cynical political reasons in the past, but is far too shrewd a politician to maintain them now. And he was apparently woefully ignorant about AIDS.

    I would still support him.

    Because there is no momentum behind any of those ideas. They are dead, any politician who actively supported them would be committing political suicide. There is absolutely no political will to reenact Jim Crow, or even reverse section X of the CRA. The racist laws that exist today are much more subtle.

    The political momentum that DOES exist today, and a great deal of momentum it is, is the corporations/wall street taking over the government, starting terrible wars, stealing all the money, passing laws the grossly hurt the consumers and only help multinational corporations, and destroy all of our basic rights.

    There exists much momentum behind that; it is actively happening right now, and has for the last decade or more.

    Say what you will about the issues that you social disagree with him on (abortion, gay rights, etc.) Say what you will about the differing philosophies of government in society you might hold with him. I won’t discount the importance of these divisions.

    But, to the left-liberals, I say: On the monumentally important issues that I mentioned above – in short, corporate control of government – Ron Paul is very, very good. And he has been for a long time, and he has been very, very consistent in his denunciation of these politics.

    Face it, considering Obama’s unpopularity, we may well have a GOP as the next president. And Ron Paul is radically better than any of the rest on these hugely important issues, and not worse in any way.

    On these issues of corporate control of government, he is arguably quite a bit better than the DLC leadership. Hell, even Al Franken supported SOPA. 

    A lot of what he says has troubled me. A lot of what he says has inspired me, as well-he has well articulated the philosophy of individual liberty, even his support of it is imperfect. 

    Ron Paul is far from a perfect candidate. In a way, his candidacy represents the failure of our electoral system; a system where we are forced to choose between two fundamentally flawed choices, and as a reaction most people vote for the one they dread the least. 

    However, he has seven fundamental selling points to me:

    1) He is rock solid in defending civil liberties.
    2) He is rock solid in opposing aggressive wars.
    3) He is rock solid in opposing corporate lobbyist control of government.
    4) He is rock solid in opposing the inherently corrupt nature of the Federal Reserve.
    5) He is rock solid in opposing the incalculably damaging drug war.
    6) He recognizes the basic facts that taxation is not a voluntary arrangement, and debt screws future generations.
    7) He is strong (although not perfect) in saying that religion should not play a role in politics – see the last debate.

    I feel these are the seven most important current, ongoing issues in 2012.

    If the democrats could present a candidate who had even five or six of those seven assets, I would ignore serious disagreements about domestic qualities, and I would vote for him/her.

    Similarly, considering the alternatives (Pres. Gingrich?!?!?), I’m going to ignore serious disagreements with Paul I have about abortion, gay rights, and fleet footed black teenagers, and I will vote for him.

    And I fail to see why liberals who are able to do so in their states’ primaries wouldn’t as well.

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