Saturday, February 9, 2008

Ron Paul: Thanks, chumps!

UPDATE Saturday 10:30 p.m.: Newbie bloggers, pay attention. If you say your prayers at night, one of these days, you might get the awesome Instalanche. Thanks, professor -- even if I am a little harsh sometimes. I've been hanging out with Ace too much, I guess. Or maybe Jimmie.

Also, I'm posting this from a borrowed computer in LaFayette Hall at George Washington University, and Marilyn gives a big shout-out to all her GW College Republican homeys. (More updates below.)

* * * * *
First, Mitt quits, now Ron Paul hangs it up:

With Romney gone, the chances of a brokered convention are nearly zero. But that does not affect my determination to fight on, in every caucus and primary remaining, and at the convention for our ideas, with just as many delegates as I can get. But with so many primaries and caucuses now over, we do not now need so big a national campaign staff, and so I am making it leaner and tighter. Of course, I am committed to fighting for our ideas within the Republican party, so there will be no 3rd party run. ...
I have constituents in my home district that I must serve. I cannot and will not let them down. And I have another battle I must face here as well. If I were to lose the primary for my congressional seat, all our opponents would react with glee, and pretend it was a rejection of our ideas. I cannot and will not let that happen.
In the presidential race and the congressional race, I need your support, as always. And I have plans to continue fighting for our ideas in politics and education that I will share with you when I can, for I will need you at my side. In the meantime, onward and upward! The neocons, the warmongers, the socialists, the advocates of inflation will be hearing much from you and me.

"Hey, chumps, ever heard of something called a 'bait and switch'?
"Remember all that money you donated so I could campaign for president?
"Well, instead I'm going to use it to campaign for re-election to Congess, you stupid chumps.
"However, just in case you're not smart enough to realize you've been played for a sucker, I will maintain a token presidential campaign. That will allow me to continue paying fat salaries to the genius pimps who masterminded this scam.
"You've been so totally punk'd, dude. I got your hopes up, then screwed you over.

"To quote a great American, 'Never give a sucker an even break.'
"If I can't win re-election in Texas, my advisers plan for me to have a second career doing late-night infomercials for no-money-down real-estate scams.

"Don't hate the player, hate the game."

Like the Romney supporters left brokenhearted by Thursday's announcement from Mitt The Quitter, now the Paulistas can begin to come to grips with the fact that they've been misled and exploited.
I'm still at CPAC -- or, actually, I'm about a block from CPAC, at the home of my friend Matt Keller. I understand that another of my friends, Matt Vadum, got shanghaied by bloggers last night, while I was hanging with ... well, that's another post.
UPDATE (Saturday p.m.): Guess Matt Vadum wasn't lying, huh? And excuse me for my inability to modulate my voice. Also, excuse my French. Mon dieu!

UPDATE Saturday 2:15 p.m.: More at Memeorandum, Reason Magazine, The Caucus, and Don Surber, who says:

If he is not a 3rd Party candidate, then I was wrong about the guy. I apologize for being so harsh to judge him and his supporters.
Don, the problem is, you were not harsh enough. Please keep reading.

And to the stupid commenter who accused me of being un-American: Screw you, you gullible chump. You just got played, and you don't even recognize when somebody's trying to give you a clue. A sucker is born every minute.

UPDATE Sunday 6:40 a.m.: I cannot believe the True Believers in the comment field. I mean, isn't profound skepticism intrinsic to the libertarian worldview?

Friday and Saturday, I spent several hours conferring (as we say in Washington) with the libertarian brain trust, including Shane Cory, Bob Barr, staffers at Cato and CEI, and the editors of Reason magazine. While not all of them agree with my ultra-cynical analysis of Paul's Friday night letter, I think it fair to say that Brian Doherty's reaction of disappointment is widely shared.

UPDATE Sunday 9 a.m.: As Deborah Corey Barnes testifies, the DCVIPCC's invitation-only party at CPAC was a smashing success:

[I]t was a blast held by Stacy McCain and Matt Vadum until the hotel management cut it off ... there are many luxury suites in the Omni Shoreham. In fact, it seems like the management spends most of the nights during CPAC breaking them up. Why?
My theory, Mrs. Barnes? God gives us enemies for a reason, and thus we should be grateful for His blessings.

Like the Roman centurion, Jesse the Security Chief is "a man under authority." Who knows what misery was averted by Jesse's intervention? What might have happened, I ask you, if Jesse hadn't broken up the party before Bob Barr arrived? I remind you that Congressman Barr has been known to exercise his Second Amendment rights at social occasions.

Therefore, I will be grateful. And next year, we'll either (a) convene our soiree elsewhere, or (b) invite Jesse to the party. This will be a topic of discussion at the next meeting of the DCVIPCC.

As to the historic nature of the "blast," I will quote one of our uninvited guests (I have a nostalgic admiration for clever party-crashers): "Dude, that was epic."

Exit question: Was Stephen Glass a fabulist ... or a visionary?


  1. Such an AMERICAN you are! Your version of a democratic republic seems to resemble something more akin to (fill in the blank). Good luck trying to undermine all that is good in this country.

  2. As far as I know Ron Paul is NOT allowed to use his Presidential fund raising for his congressional run. I wish I could find the link where I read that but it makes sense.

    So please show me the election laws that allow this money to be diverted...

  3. I've been saying for weeks now that Rawn Pawl is in big trouble back home. His campaign has been flooding the local airwaves, not with "Ron Paul for President" messages, but "reelect Ron Paul to Congress."

    Not a word in these ads about his kook farts over the past year. Not a word about his insane America-hating fan club.

  4. Excellent! Reading your post validates something that I have been wondering about for some time now. It seems so glaringly obvious. Wow.

  5. Paul was flooding the airwaves in California with radio ads, so I'm not sure where you get that this was a "bait and switch". He raised money while running for president (none of mine; mine went to Fred, who dropped out even sooner), and if radio spots and debates are any measure, it sure looks like he was actually RUNNING for president.

    Whether or not a politician should be allowed to campaign for two offices at once is another matter. Hawaii has (used to have?) a "resign to run" law, aimed specifically at a former Mayor of Honolulu, which required a politician to resign from one office before running for another.

  6. Thirty years or more ago, Mike Royko (rest his cynical soul) said (this was in response to complaints bout tv-evangelists), "Some people are just sheep, and they're going to get sheared. Who does the shearing doesn't really matter."

  7. I gave the Paul campaign well over $1000. While there are aspects of the Paul campaign that I think he could've done much better, I don't feel suckered in the least.

    Due to Paul's run, for the first time in my life, I've seen serious debate on national television about eliminating the IRS, the role of the Federal Reserve in causing inflation, and drastic reduction in the size and scope of the Federal government.

    Paul has done far better than anyone predicted when his campaign started. Who predicted that Paul would best both Giuliani and Thompson in longevity and delegate counts?

    Paul's success at fundraising will also inspire other pro-liberty candidates to enter politics. While Paul won't win the presidency this year, due to his campaign, I expect to have much better choices in candidates in future campaigns.

    However, Paul's presidential campaign is now receiving almost no coverage in the media. Its potential to spread the message of liberty this political season is most likely exhausted.

    Therefore, I would much rather see Paul spend the money on something with greater impact, such as retaining his Congressional seat, than further efforts on a futile Presidential campaign.

  8. I think Ron Paul is an unhinged loon. But do you have any evidence for your accusation that he's engaged in a bait and switch? (Yes, I understand that you surmise it. But that's not evidence. Do you have any evidence?)

    Ron Paul has been repeatedly re-elected to Congress. He didn't need to run for president to raise money for a congressional campaign.

    If you're suggesting that he was always going to abandon his long-shot presidential ambitions when it came time to seek re-election in Texas, fine. But that's not a bait and switch. And it seems unlikely that his supporters would have ever expected him to do otherwise. After all, if you wanted a man to be president, you probably wouldn't object to him holding a seat in Congress.

  9. Um, I don't get it. All along, RP said that he was 99.9% sure that he would not run via a third party, and people gave him millions of dollars of support. Now that he's one of three, count 'em, three, remaining GOP candidates, he's "screwing" his supporters by NOT running in a third party??!!?

  10. I fail to comprehend your theory, anyone who has observed Ron Paul's political stances as represented during congressional and monetary policy debates (many of which aren't broadcast mainstream) would recognize the authenticity in his convictions. I'm sure the majority of the people who donated to his cause recognized there is little chance of a major upheaval of the status quo of modern economics in the direction that the founders of this country envisioned (free market capitalism, which by the way this country is not, no mater what the democrats say) an analysis of smith or locke, let alone more modern economist macroeconmic theory (see friedman "capitalism and freedom" (1962) its a small book don't be scared, or even the writings of greenspan and bernenke) Their theories seldom reflect policy if read in entirety. I digress, as someone who donated to his cause and contemplated on these issues at great length I don't believe he was out to screw his supporters.

  11. What, me harsh? I, sir, am a saint! I'm even engaged in Productive Blog Conversations!

  12. Ron Paul's campaign sent about a dozen mailers to the caucus voters here in Montana. But then there's only about 1800 of us too.