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Tea Party / May 25, 2010

rand paul1

This article first appeared in Antiwar.com

“When it is said that nothing, including a nuclear strike, is off the table on Iran, are those who say it not also threatening genocide?”
– Rep. Ron Paul, May 22, 2007

“I don’t think you take [nuclear weapons] off the table.”
– Rand Paul on Iran, The O’Reilly FactorMay 19, 2010

“Rand Paul believes in a strong national defense, opposes closing Guantanamo Bay, and believes that Iran is a serious threat….”
– Text of Rand Paul campaign ad, March 2010 (removed from YouTube “by the user” in the last 72 hours)

In September 2008, an estimated 10,000 liberty-minded individuals crowded into the Target Center in Minneapolis, just a few miles away from the Republican National Convention.

They had staged a sort of alternative convention, a “Rally for the Republic,” hailing presidential candidate Ron Paul, the longtime Republican congressman from Texas, who had been excoriated by his party so badly that they had refused to let him onto the floor of the convention hall without an escort and had prevented many of his delegates from announcing their votes out loud during the Sept. 3 roll call nomination.

Paul supporters, who had swelled in numbers and had once raised $6 million in small donations for him in one day, were dismissed as nut-jobs and “Paultards” by mainstream Republicans. His views – especially against the ongoing military operations abroad – were sneered at and dismissed as too fringe for the RNC platform. Meanwhile, “momma grizzly” Sarah Palin was crowned queen of the ball, sashaying through a convention speech with a lust for the Global War on Terror matched that night only by Rudy “9/11” Giuliani himself.

How things have changed – sort of. Today, Paul’s son Rand is one step closer to becoming a U.S. senator, giving him a platform exceeding that of his libertarian father’s on Capitol Hill. This development should be a major boon for antiwar activists and civil libertarians who have long relied on the elder Paul and his “revolution” as a reasonable voice for non-intervention. It is especially poignant as the military will have no less than 100,000 troops in Afghanistan by the 2010 election, and growing signs indicate that there may be more than 50,000 soldiers in Iraq beyond the imposed withdrawal deadline of August.

Congress – which has ignored the issue of war for months – will no doubt soon be called on to act, if not directly on policy, on the budget (which has already exceeded $1.3 trillionsince 2001).

But after months of a grueling primary, it is not yet clear where the younger Paul’s savvy campaigning ends and his true ideological impulses begin, particularly on national security and foreign policy. No one is entirely sure how to reconcile his more blistering critiques of the war during his father’s campaign with his more hawkish pronouncements – particularly on Iran as “a dangerous threat to the Middle East” and against closing the Guantanamo Bay prison – during his own campaign.

“All and all I think it is a positive improvement to keep electing more and more pro-liberty candidates, but those who trumpet Rand as a real liberty candidate might be disappointed when he actually gets in office,” offers Tarrin Lupo, who publishes the LCL Report Web site. He joins other libertarians in their skepticism of Paul’s embrace of the Tea Party movement, including his courting of Sarah Palin’s endorsement several months ago.

“At a time when libertarian ideas are becoming discussed more in the mainstream, the last thing we need is to become identified with another right-wing conservative with stances so anti-freedom,” shares writer Christine Smith, who ran unsuccessfully for the Libertarian Party nomination for president in 2008.

But Paul’s identification with the Tea Party movement is unabashed and certainly justified, at least politically. First, the Ron Paul Revolution, AKA the liberty movement, AKA Campaign for Liberty, was identifying itself with the Boston Tea Party years before it came a haven for disaffected Republicans in the wake the Democratic takeover of Washington. In a way, the Paul libertarians see these neo-patriots as finally coming over to their way of thinking, not the other way around.

But more importantly, Paul knew he needed the extraordinary momentum and muscle (not to mention contributions) of the Tea Party to win the closed Kentucky Republican primary (only those registered as Republicans as of Jan. 1 were able to vote in the May 18 contest). He guessed early on that some 75 percent of the current Tea Party movement did not support his father during the 2008 Republican primary. So he’s careful to call himself not a libertarian, but a “constitutional conservative.” His frank acknowledgment that his campaign courted – and happily received – Sarah Palin’s endorsement like a blessing from on high indicates how important it is he identify with her faction, despite their differences on war and civil liberties.

This was especially true given that he was running against the establishment Republican, Kentucky Secretary of State Trey Grayson, who had the approbation of not only Kentucky’s senior Sen. Mitch McConnell, but also heavyweights like Dick Cheney and plainly nervous national neoconservatives like Bill Kristol, all poised to condemn Rand for his “neo-isolationist” pedigree. Indeed, Grayson and his surrogates went on the attack early last fall, leading to some surprisingly hawkish responses from Paul.

“Foreign terrorists do not deserve the protections of our Constitution,” Paul said in a Nov. 19 release. “These thugs should stand before military tribunals and be kept off American soil. I will always fight to keep Kentucky safe, and that starts with cracking down on our enemies.”

It cannot be stressed enough how far this rhetoric diverges from the liberty movement’s sustained view of the Global War on Terror. Just the mention of “foreign terrorists” – when Paul should know by now that the majority of prisoners at Gitmo today have not been charged with any crime, much less convicted – smacks of gratuitous right-wing demagoguery. Not to mention that the tribunals have been criticized by a growing line of respected military lawyers – not just “kooky” libertarians and the ACLU – on ethical, moral, and constitutional grounds. And the Supreme Court ruled two years ago that “foreign terrorists” being held on American soil do have some rights – including habeas corpus, the right to question their detention in court.

Not surprisingly, Paul’s comments and the tone of his muscular campaign ads are right in line with the Tea Party, and nowhere was this more evident than at the big Tea Party confabs earlier this year, including the National Tea Party Convention in Tennessee, where Palin brought down the roof when she said terrorists don’t deserve constitutional rights and mocked President Obama: “We need a commander in chief, not a professor of law standing at the lectern.”

In fact, if the Campaign for Liberty hadn’t bussed in all those college libertarians into the Tea Party-friendly Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in February, Ron Paul might have lost the straw poll, and he certainly wouldn’t have gotten the applause he did when he said during his own address that fighting wars “so carelessly” and telling the rest of the world what to do are “neoconservatism, but not true conservatism.” The only “national security” this crowd wanted to talk about otherwise was the stuff Liz Cheney was dishing out: thanking the CIA for waterboarding, criticizing Obama for not waterboarding enough, and insisting the administration wants to “bring terrorists into the United States.”

Referring to the response of regular CPAC-goers to her group’s antiwar stance at the three-day event, Tracey Harmon of the libertarian Ladies of Liberty Alliance (LOLA), said, “I’ve been called unpatriotic.” It makes sense that Rand Paul would want to avoid a similar response in Kentucky, whose Republicans hail from a Jacksonian conservative, proud military tradition.

But Paul’s refusal to outright repudiate or neutralize the overheated rhetoric, while indulging in it himself when it comes to right-wing hobgoblins like Iran and Guantanamo Bay, has set off some alarms. More recently, he publicly chose sides with Israel on the politically explosive issue of Middle East peace. This seems so oddly forced and out of place that it might only be explained as more pandering to the right wing:

“I would never vote to place trade restrictions on Israel, and I would filibuster any attempts to place sanctions on Israel or tariffs on any Israeli goods.

“The issue of Palestine is incredibly difficult and complex. The entire world wishes for peace in the region, but any arrangement or treaty must come from Israel, when she is ready and when her conditions have been met.

“I strongly object to the arrogant approach of Obama administration, itself a continuation of the failures of past U.S. administrations, as they push Israel to make security concessions behind thinly veiled threats.

“Only Israel can decide what is in her security interest, not America and certainly not the United Nations. Friends do not coerce friends to trade land for peace, or to give up the vital security interests of their people.”

It all sounds too much like the last administration for some of his early supporters to bear. Here’s a comment from cfountain72 on a Rand Paul-related post I put up on theAntiwar.com blog May 19:

“As someone who did make some small contributions to Rand’s campaign, I am torn as to what the man really stands for. Is he indeed a non-interventionist like his father, and making some calculated moves to focus attention on areas of agreement to garner broader Tea Party support? Or perhaps ‘being his own man’ means (unlike his father) that he regards American intervention a necessity after all? While, in any case, I think he’ll be a better Senator than his November opponent, I certainly wouldn’t continue to send donations to out-of-state candidates that hew to the neo-clown mold. I pray Rand deosn’t (sic) fall into that trap.”

In his favor, Paul has said repeatedly that he would cut away at the bloated military- industrial complex, including the federal procurement system, which fosters an insider racket in which behemoths like Halliburton send battalions of lobbyists and consultants to Capitol Hill each year to mold and drive defense policy and budgets. The companies are then rewarded billions in defense contracts each year, despite, as in the case of Halliburton, numerous accusations of waste, fraud, and abuse of taxpayer funds.

Like his father, Rand doesn’t believe “we have to have troops in 130 countries and 750 bases.” He says there should have been a “declaration of war” for the operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. While he says he would not have voted in favor of such a declaration for Iraq, he would have for Afghanistan, because “I felt that we were attacked, and we were attacked by people [on 9/11] who were organizing and plotting against us in Afghanistan.”

But Rand doesn’t talk much about the current counterinsurgency mission in Afghanistan, other than to say he “has questions” and there must be a “debate” on the course of our national security interests in Afghanistan moving forward.

Daniel McCarthy, a Campaign for Liberty scribe and senior editor at The American Conservative, hardly a nest of hawks, nonetheless cautions against a libertarian backlash against Rand solely on the basis of his primary campaign rhetoric:

“Rand is able communicate with the quite large segment of the GOP that is not anti-interventionist, but that is anti-nation-building – the segment of the GOP that could have become dominant in the 1990s but that went dormant after 9/11. I think Rand himself is halfway between his father’s views and those of the semi-non-interventionist Right of the 1990s. … It’s hard to say how he will vote as a senator if he wins in November – but the fact that he has made any criticisms at all of America’s ongoing wars and has said he would not have voted for the Iraq War already distinguishes him from all the other GOP senators.

“I think the odds are that he’ll be better than his colleagues: if he wanted to be perfectly safe and unobjectionable to GOP voters, he would never have said anything critical about U.S. foreign policy. No group of voters ever gets 100 percent of what it wants from any political candidate. The question is, if you can get 80 or 90 percent, should you try to achieve that? If not, you aren’t in politics.

“For my part, speaking personally and not for TAC or anyone else, I’m willing to give Rand Paul a chance. He won’t vote the way I want on every issue, but he’ll counter-balance some of the more ideologically imperialist forces in Washington. There’s a pressing need for that.”

Interestingly, the biggest howl to come out about Rand Paul’s national security positions in the wake of his stunning 25-point win last Tuesday – aside from spirited discussions on libertarian Facebook pages and assorted blogs – were from neoconservatives who still view Paul as a threat, despite his steroidal pro-military campaign ads and his special new friends like Palin (whose own foreign policy gurus include the likes of Bill Kristol and Randy Scheunemann).

“Rand Paul’s victory in the Kentucky Republican primary is obviously a depressing event for those who support strong national defense and rational conservative politics. In another year, such a victory would be a prelude to a Republican defeat in the general election,” wrote conservative pundit David Frum last week.

Through gritted teeth, Kristol said the GOP was a “big tent” that could allow an energizing candidate like Rand Paul into it – but not before he took a few swipes, including one at papa Paul.

“Paul ran a good campaign,” Kristol told David Weigel at the Washington Post. “He did a good job of being less like his dad – seeming less ‘out there’ – so if you were a normal Kentucky voter you thought you were voting for a Sarah Palin-like, anti-Washington figure, not someone who bought into the whole Ron Paul agenda.”

Comments like this could easily be dismissed as the bitter last throes of the Borg-like neoconservative takeover of the Republican Party post-9/11. Kristol and his pals did their best to thwart both Ron and Rand Paul, so far to no avail. But the fact that Rand Paul has identified so sharply with the Tea Party movement, stating unequivocally that he shares a “kinship” with Sarah Palin and that she is qualified to be commander in chief, naturally raises questions for those so dedicated to changing the course of our current foreign policy.

Everyone is talking today about Paul’s position on the Civil Rights Act of 1964. I argue that the ongoing military operations of 2001 and 2003 are much more critical to the present and future health of this country. We’re not only talking budgets here – billions a year on defense, homeland security, and related federal expenses – but also the wars’ larger impact on the economy, our relationship to the world, the creeping government overreach on the homefront, the tens of thousands of veterans coming home injured and ill and requiring lifetime care and benefits, the burden on our communities and families, and the vulnerability we have felt since 9/11 that never seems to go away.

Questioning where Rand Paul stands on all this is not suggesting we throw out the “constitutional conservative” with the bathwater. While writer Daniel Larison insists that Paul “is a refreshing exception to the conventional Republican attitudes on national security and war that predominate in the Tea Party,” others would argue that his full embrace of the Tea Party (as evidenced in his victory speech) has effectively muddied the waters. Will his non-interventionist impulses prevail, or will the Tea Party demand certain reciprocities for its help in winning the seat? In a body of 100 polarized members, will he ever be allowed to forge alliances with senators like Democrat Russ Feingold when it comes to defending liberty against warrantless wiretapping and more aggressive military action abroad – or will he be expected to lock arms with Republican hawks and anointed Tea Party leaders when such critical votes arise?

Kentuckians deserve to know, as do all of Rand’s outside donors, who contributed 77 percent of his campaign treasury. If the waters are muddy, it is his responsibility to clear them up before November.

This article first appeared in antiwar.com.

Kelley Beaucar Vlahos, a Washington, D.C.-based freelance writer, is a longtime political reporter for FoxNews.com and a contributing editor at The American Conservative. She is also a Washington correspondent for Homeland Security Today magazine.

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49 Comments

Add your own

  • 1. Eric Dondero  |  May 25th, 2010 at 4:29 pm

    Since when is being Pro-Military, and Pro-National Security, while Anti-Islamo-Fascist supposed to be “NeoCon.”

    NeoCons are boring-ass conservatives who want to keep government the same size it is right now. They are not opponents of Islamo-Fascism. They mouth the right words on occasion in fighting Radical Islamists. But they could care less about the intrusions on civil liberties that would occur under Sharia Law: Women’s rights, Gays being slaughtered in the streets, Marijuana/Alcohol outlawed, ect…

    Only Libertarians are principly opposed to Islamo-Fascism.

  • 2. Necronomic.JustIce  |  May 25th, 2010 at 4:44 pm

    Who? Gives? A? Fuck?

    Was anyone here about to vote for Rand Paul anyway?

  • 3. vortexgods  |  May 25th, 2010 at 6:38 pm

    His Democratic opponent has been described on Counterpunch as an “awful neo-liberal prosecutor.” ( http://www.counterpunch.org/cockburn05212010.html )

    If I lived in Kentucky (Heaven Forfend!) I know who I’d vote for.

  • 4. vortexgods  |  May 25th, 2010 at 6:41 pm

    Actually, I probably wouldn’t even go to the polls…

  • 5. RecoverylessRecovery  |  May 25th, 2010 at 6:48 pm

    “Is Rand Paul Just Another Neocon Republicrat Masquerading As A Libertarian Rebel?”

    ..OR is he a Libertarian Rebel masquerading as just another Neocon Republicrat?

    Aha!

  • 6. Concerned Citizen  |  May 25th, 2010 at 7:03 pm

    Shitty and boring article. Besides, if elected, Rand Paul will face a simple choice: become a fringe voice like his father or Kucinich, or embrace the American Empire and abandon whatever ideological compass he may have. Let’s hope for the latter.

    Long live Pax Americana.

  • 7. Evan Harper  |  May 25th, 2010 at 8:05 pm

    Is Rand Paul really the kind of stupendous asshole he comes of as, or is he a completely different kind of stupendous asshole who is merely pretending to be a stupendous asshole of another variety in order to appeal to the stupendous assholes who vote in Kentucky Republican primary elections?

    Only a stupendous asshole would even ask the question.

  • 8. Allen  |  May 25th, 2010 at 8:11 pm

    The “Islamo fascists” have failed to establish “Sharia law” in many Muslim majority nations, to say nothing of nations which are not even Muslim.

    So, yeah, reality check: Islamo-Fascism is not an existential threat to the “West”. That is except so far as what damage small bands of suicidally committed fanatics (some not even that — like the NYC guy) can do.

    What “Islamo Fascism”, a clunky Western label, actually represents is a vehicle for reactionaries to dismantle the rule of law and the rights of the citizen (pillars of classical liberalism) in favor of a security state run by executive elites and the intelligence axis. But of course, was there ever a fucking doubt that’s where society is headed anyway?

    And on that note, I don’t see how feeding the one trillion dollar a year bloated military-intelligence security state monster by blunderbussing about the world “solving” problems in a way that conveniently creates new ones is “anti-Washington”.

    Said monster, the Republican’s favorite, is naturally also criminally inefficient and corrupt; it probably costs twice as much as it should after projects that go nowhere, kickbacks, senseless deployments, and all that comes with that. It’s both a giant payola scam and also probably the biggest socialist make work project, complete with welfare state like entitlements for members on the lower rungs, in history.

  • 9. FrankMcG  |  May 25th, 2010 at 11:32 pm

    Woo boy. Rand Paul. Take all the naive crazy of classic Libertarians, throw in the extra crazy of Ron Paul supporters, add in naming your kid after Ayn Rand, recall the endorsement he got from Sarah Palin, and ponder his statement that businesses should have the right to decide if they’re segregated or not.

    What’s with the recent insurgence of super Libertarian trolls here? #1 can’t possible be a real person, can he?

  • 10. The Ghost of Fenians Past  |  May 25th, 2010 at 11:48 pm

    “Only Libertarians are principly opposed to Islamo-Fascism.”

    Someday, they hope to learn English too.

  • 11. Mike  |  May 26th, 2010 at 12:32 am

    Allen:
    Rule of Law? Fuck that.

    “The law is an adroit mixture of customs that are beneficial to society, and could be followed even if no law existed, and others that are of advantage to a ruling minority, but harmful to the masses of men, and can be enforced on them only by terror.”

    Peter Kropotkin

  • 12. DarthFurious  |  May 26th, 2010 at 8:18 am

    The Libertarian Party has the exact same problem now that it’s had for the last 60 years or so. It’s riddled with fascists who use arguments about freedom and liberty as cover for their thinly-veiled authoritarianism and racism.
    Anyone who tries to use individual liberty as the justification for reducing ANY segment of the population to second-class citizens is not to be trusted any farther than they can be thrown.

  • 13. FrankMcG  |  May 26th, 2010 at 9:26 am

    #12, that’s not true at all!

    The Libertarian party is ALSO riddled with people who think we’d be better off tearing down civilization and living in the wild west (robber baron era).

  • 14. G. Johnson  |  May 26th, 2010 at 10:53 am

    Voting for this guy on the right is just like voting for Obama on the left. Both are scaming the public. Rand will be as big a phony bust as Obama has been.

  • 15. DarthFurious  |  May 26th, 2010 at 11:24 am

    @FrankMcG:

    I agree, of course. However, I’m afraid I have to point out your basic logical faux pas. Per your use of the word ALSO, my statement is true, and not at all false as you suggest.

  • 16. Necronomic Justice  |  May 26th, 2010 at 12:25 pm

    Here’s a little something for Darth and Frank,

    http://27.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_l2zgop5zwE1qz87coo1_500.png

    Yeah, I probably fucked up the HTML.

  • 17. Sodomite the Bunny  |  May 26th, 2010 at 1:33 pm

    I’d prolly vote for Larry Summahs, moj geroj, as a rite-in to the 32nd degree of Free Masonry.

  • 18. Allen  |  May 26th, 2010 at 3:13 pm

    Mike:

    Well by bringing up Kropotkin and his view of law (shared to some degree by many other thinkers), you are regressing the argument.

    The ultimate nature of “the law” is not at issue. What is at issue is the notion of the law as a stable contract, one premise of “liberalism”, whereby a person can have expectations about the limits of the law and society upon him.

    I’m aware of what most anarchists thought of this and also Karl Marx and others —

    The point is that we (most recently the U.S.) are evolving to a point where the semblance of this “idea” is being merrily discarded in favor of a black box system where society, and all life in it, is managed for “its own good” by elites from within the growing security state.

    You can call it the death of a fiction if you like. It’s a noteworthy progression —

  • 19. senorpogo  |  May 26th, 2010 at 4:05 pm

    “if elected, Rand Paul will face a simple choice: become a fringe voice like his father or Kucinich”

    Not sure if I buy this. A truly independent voice in the Senate would probably be able to push quite a bit of their own agenda simply by playing ball when the time came and his or her vote was needed. It’s the difference of being one vote in 100 rather than one in 435.

    I find the Rand Paul phenomenon pretty interesting. He’s the libertarian who is pro-foreign engagement, anti-choice (okay with the federal gov’t interceding here!), and anti-immigrant. And while he’s pro-medical marijuana, I haven’t read any place where he’s spoke out against the drug war (like his father has). So he’s against the best libertarian stuff.

    Yet they still call him a libertarian for some reason.

  • 20. Ozinator  |  May 26th, 2010 at 6:57 pm

    senorpogo,

    Kucinich had his chance and make no mistake…when he was invited onto the plane he was shown that it was never his choice to be a gatekeeper in the first place so he better damn well do what he was told….this cunt Paul wouldn’t wait that long and (as you’ve noticed) from what he’s saying, he wouldn’t need to worry about it anyway

  • 21. Nonesuch  |  May 26th, 2010 at 7:42 pm

    Daniel Larison’s name appearing on the exiled? Worlds are colliding!
    Also, Frank is right. Whats going on here?

  • 22. Marquelot  |  May 26th, 2010 at 8:23 pm

    Rand Paul comes off as an asshole. Just because some of the briarhoppers in Kentucky like him doesn’t pull much weight with anyone with a brain.

  • 23. FrankMcG  |  May 26th, 2010 at 8:47 pm

    “The point is that we (most recently the U.S.) are evolving to a point where the semblance of this “idea” is being merrily discarded in favor of a black box system where society, and all life in it, is managed for “its own good” by elites from within the growing security state. ”

    I would rather such a system be managed by a representative government beholden to laws and regulations than private interests that Plutocrats in Libertarian clothing bow down to.

    and I just KNOW that some impotent conspiracy theorist was just now reaching out to type “YOU DON’T REALLY BELIEVE WE LIVE IN A DEMOCRACY DO YOU?”

    Yes, yes we do. The problem is most people would like to cynically bitch instead of organize. I guarantee anyone who makes such a claim has NEVER in their life even tried to be part of a political action group.

    Do you seriously think that politicians vote for lobbyist interests because the money goes straight into their personal savings account? The money itself isn’t influential, it’s the campaigning it buys to shift public opinion. You see it with Fox News and Freedomworks every day where their millions in advertising has such a stranglehold on certain people that they’ll actively campaign AGAINST health coverage while they sat on their ass during all the Bush years.

    The most successful lobby group in this country continues to be the AARP, despite them not contributing one red cent to campaign funds. This is because old people VOTE, and politicians know it.

  • 24. Karl  |  May 26th, 2010 at 9:55 pm

    Rand explicitly said he is not a Libertarian. He calls himself a Constitutionalist Conservative or something.

  • 25. Joe Stack's Financial Advisor  |  May 26th, 2010 at 10:05 pm

    Ahhh… Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, Redux 2010 edition. Rand (author) was a crackpot. Everyone on here should know that by now (if not by Ames’ article, then elsewhere, sic. logic).

    Mr. Smith was a transparency surrealist that should have had his ass handed to him, and the 2010 version would probably have “ended up” being on the D.C. madam’s clientel list via a watergate shuffle.

    “Libertarianism” was quickly co-opted way back in 2007, and if you see the “Paultards” on Fox News, you already know who the star of all the late shows is going to be.

    Approach anyone that identifies with any group or person with suspicion; as anyone who lets others define them, whether politically or ideologically, is a cultist.

  • 26. Zhubajie  |  May 27th, 2010 at 2:29 am

    “I just KNOW that some impotent conspiracy theorist was just now reaching out to type ‘YOU DON’T REALLY BELIEVE WE LIVE IN A DEMOCRACY DO YOU?'”

    You don’t have to be an impotent conspiracy theorist to recognize an oligarchy when you’re screwed over by one.

    Zhu Bajie

  • 27. Zhubajie  |  May 27th, 2010 at 2:31 am

    “Do you seriously think that politicians vote for lobbyist interests because the money goes straight into their personal savings account? ”

    No, classic Chicago pols are handed alligator skin briefcases stuffed with $100 bills.

  • 28. Zhubajie  |  May 27th, 2010 at 2:37 am

    Libertarians mainly believe in “me, me, me!” Rand Paul has realized that the best way to enrich “him, him, him”, fill his treasure chests with gold coins, and retire to Somalia, is to play along with the powers that be, tell Teatards what they want to hear, and vote to keep the military-industrial complex rolling along.

    Probably Somali pirates will rob him as soon as he arrives in the lawless libert-opia and he’ll end his days begging on the beach or whoring for Japanese tourists.

  • 29. John  |  May 27th, 2010 at 2:04 pm

    Why is this junk on the exile? I come here for good articles, not boring crap

  • 30. FrankMcG  |  May 27th, 2010 at 2:45 pm

    Yeah I always wondered why the “GOVERNMENT BAD!” people just don’t all move to Somalia. You don’t get a much smaller government than that.

  • 31. Necronomic Justice  |  May 27th, 2010 at 4:32 pm

    eXcileD should open a thread for discussing the best trollings at americaspeakingout.com.

    “The GOP must return to its Pro-Life principles. No longer should we allow death into this country. The USA was founded by people looking for the Fountain of Youth in the hopes of gaining immortality, and it is high time we devoted all possible resources to completing this quest.”

  • 32. Zhubajie  |  May 27th, 2010 at 4:34 pm

    “Since when is being Pro-Military, and Pro-National Security, while Anti-Islamo-Fascist supposed to be ‘NeoCon’ ”

    If you live in the USA, I’d worry a lot more about “Christo-fascists” like Pat Robertson, John Haggee, Sarah Palin!

  • 33. Zhubajie  |  May 27th, 2010 at 4:41 pm

    Frank, it’s because they are largely whiners, not do-ers.

  • 34. tazio  |  May 27th, 2010 at 8:44 pm

    every high-profile libertarian goes out of their way to suck at the teat of the welfare state, what’s up with that

  • 35. FrankMcG  |  May 28th, 2010 at 8:08 am

    ““I just KNOW that some impotent conspiracy theorist was just now reaching out to type ‘YOU DON’T REALLY BELIEVE WE LIVE IN A DEMOCRACY DO YOU?’””

    “You don’t have to be an impotent conspiracy theorist to recognize an oligarchy when you’re screwed over by one.

    Zhu Bajie”

    So what’s the solution? Sitting around bitching and talking up a revolution that you’d never go through with?

    That’s the very definition of impotent.

  • 36. badnewswade  |  May 28th, 2010 at 2:06 pm

    Is it just me, or is Rand Paul a dead ringer for Rorscharch out of “Watchmen”?

  • 37. President Brown  |  May 28th, 2010 at 5:16 pm

    Cut him some slack he’s just trying to get elected in an ‘Appalachian’ state, if you know what I mean. ‘Appalachian’ is a codeword for …

    I think accusing Rand Paul of being a neo con? I thought neo con was a codeword?

  • 38. Zhu Bajie  |  May 29th, 2010 at 12:39 am

    “So what’s the solution? Sitting around bitching and talking up a revolution that you’d never go through with? That’s the very definition of impotent.”

    Who says there’s a solution? Seek pleasure, avoid pain, and realize there’s no destiny or big plan; it’s all chance.

    In my case, I teach English and enjoy life in China. I guess it’s like Ames in Russia, save that China is far less f””d up than Russia.

    Zhu Bajie, alive in the bitter sea

  • 39. Zhu Bajie  |  May 29th, 2010 at 1:02 am

    “NeoCons are boring-ass conservatives

    Neo-cons are 1) an old boys network; 2) a collection of mystical bloodthirsty nationalists of a sort too familiar from the 20th century. They are not exactly Fascists; they are not exactly Nazis; they are bad in their own way. Their alliance with the Religious Right is very bad for everyone.

  • 40. blargh  |  May 29th, 2010 at 9:01 am

    “The issue if israel is very complex”

    No its not, like Frankie Boyle once said: it’s like a cake. A cake being smashed by a very angry jew. Blaming the palestinians for anything at this point seems redundant.

    What Rand is doing is putting him between a rock and a hard place. IF he doesnt believe this neocon “project for a new american century” horseshit about american power and big bad Iran then his a lyiing shill. If he does then he’s a standard issue neocon loon.

    Wouldn’t vote for him either way at this point.

    Also to the guys bitching about libertarians, A – we never had any power in america so blaming libertarians for anything going wrong is a non-starter. B – Somalia is doing better than it did under it’s government. Yes, just google it.

    http://www.peterleeson.com/Better_Off_Stateless.pdf

  • 41. RecoverylessRecovery  |  May 29th, 2010 at 10:57 am

    Libertarians, NeoCons, Republicans, Democrats; what’s the fucking difference?

    Ultimately you’re ALL Americans and Americans have become criminally fraudulent & corrupt assholes. The U.S. is DOOMED because of it and NONE of your political options can save your country from its own STUPIDITY.

    My advice to you war criminal MF’s is to LEARN ANOTHER LANGUAGE. You’ll definitely need it when it comes time to emigrate from your newly-refounded African Third World Shithole.

    Oh, and learn those new languages WITHOUT an accent so as to pass for natives, because I anticipate there’ll be a TON of people lining-up to BEAT THE LIVING SHIT out of you as soon as they realize you’re ex-Americans.

    Put THAT in your Predators and smoke it.

  • 42. Zhu Bajie  |  May 29th, 2010 at 1:37 pm

    “The issue if israel is very complex”

    Palestians are Gaelic Irish; Israelis are Scotch Irish. Neither side can eliminate the other. Neither can live with the other. So they are screwed. Like Greeks and Turks, maybe.

    Many Americans think Pals. are Indians and Israelis are Cowboys. False! The Indians won’t be eliminated by measles, etc. The cowboys mostly come from nearby regions.

    A lot of religious Americans believe in a future history that involves an Antichrist fussing with a Jewish state, and somehow it will bring Jesus back so they can have pie in the sky by and by. It’s as crazy as Marxism but far more popular.

  • 43. Marquelot  |  May 30th, 2010 at 7:15 am

    Rapture! Don’t forget the Rapture! When the Antichrist comes to make war on Israel, trues believers will rise to their heavenly kingdom (presumably with their cell phones, SUVs, and plasma teevees) and the rest of us will be Left Behind.

  • 44. Postulator  |  May 31st, 2010 at 7:21 pm

    I’ve said this many times! Libertarians would rather win a meaningless argument than win an important election!! Rand Paul, like his father before him, will blow this election by arguing over minutiae instead of promoting the big picture!!

  • 45. Zhu Bajie  |  June 3rd, 2010 at 1:54 pm

    Hey Marquelot, haven’t you seen those pictures of people being snatched out of their SUVs, etc., taken up to Jesus? I remember seeing postcards with this in the ’70s.

  • 46. DK  |  June 3rd, 2010 at 7:19 pm

    A more apt comparison here would be between Rand Paul and Paul Wellstone. Wellstone managed to get a larger platform for his ideas, I guess, but at the end of the day he didn’t stray too far form the Democratic leadership. I could imagine a similar situation with Rand Paul.

  • 47. Zhu Bajie  |  June 4th, 2010 at 5:30 pm

    “I could imagine a similar situation with Rand Paul.”

    Tragic plane crash?

  • 48. Marquelot  |  June 8th, 2010 at 4:13 am

    Well, I remember the woman who stopped on the freeway because she’d seen some blow-up dolls which had gotten loose from a sex toy store, and caused a massive pile-up. I think she got her reward, but I don’t know about the plasma teevee.

  • 49. RecoverylessRecovery  |  June 11th, 2010 at 4:25 pm

    O ne
    B ig-
    A ss
    M istake
    A merica
    !


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