What Ron Paul's 2nd Place at Ames Really MeantSubmitted by emptorrex on Thu, 08/18/2011 - 11:02
I worked on the Paul campaign in 2007/2008, raising funds, organizing a 500-strong city-wide Meetup group, planning and executing rallies and marches, holding sign-wavings, renting booths at festivals, and ignoring my wife and kids while I wrote essays and articles on various blogs about how great it would be if Ron Paul were President and why I supported him. Even though my support now comes in tapping out a few words on my laptop in the dwindling hours I have at the end of working each day, and I can't donate any money to his campaign thanks to paychecks being tighter than ever, I STILL believe in his message. Unfortunately, what I don't believe in are the American people, particularly the overwhelming majority American voters.
When Dr. Paul came in at a close second following the Iowa GOP straw poll on August 13, I felt a great excitement, mirroring the feelings I had watching the numbers tick higher and higher during the first completely organic money bombs of 2007, one of which actually being the origin of the name "tea party" adopted (co-opted?) by the disgruntled wing of the Republican party. I was, of course, frustrated, if not surprised, by the major media outlets, particularly those on television, ignoring the congressman's incredible finish at Ames, and I snickered at Jon Stewart's spot-on lampooning of his more "serious" news counterparts' willful avoidance of mentioning Ron's name and results.
Within a few days, however, I came to a startling realization. The results of the Iowa straw poll told a different story than the one I had been imagining. Ron Paul didn't lose by 200 votes to Michele Bachmann; he lost by 12,000 votes to the GOP.
You see, of the 16,000 voters present on Saturday, any vote that wasn't for Ron Paul was a vote for the same Neo-Conservative lies we've been hearing for decades. DECADES. Seventy-three percent (73%) of those in attendance preferred more warfare, more corporate welfare, more hate, more violations of civil liberties and more Wall Street banksterism in opposition to peace, individual responsibility, reason, freedom and sound money. This is why the pundits are justified in ignoring Ron Paul. It was no near-victory for a libertarian candidate; it was a decisive defeat of libertarian ideas.
Do I believe that active Paul supporters should give up? No. Do I believe the campaign should shutter its newly opened offices in Concord, New Hampshire? Not at all. Do I believe that the campaign should change its core values? Heaven forbid! What I am hoping is that if Ron Paul's supporters understand with greater clarity WHY he is being ignored by the mainstream media FOR GOOD REASON it will help to wake up the friends of liberty and the would-be supporters of Ron Paul to the reality of the world in which we live. The American public and, based on the straw poll results, the Republican party are steeped in a powerful denial about the condition of the U.S. economy, the leviathan state, the evil of war, and how little time remains before the day of reckoning.
While Dr. Paul's showing at Iowa was impressive in comparison to four years ago, we must realize that it is only a first, and very tiny, step in the right direction.
I'm a curmudgeon and a cynic, and although somebody, somewhere once said that these are the hallmarks of a frustrated optimist, I don't hold much hope for humanity, particularly of the American variety. However, if YOU believe that tomorrow's history can be re-written today, if you believe that the actions of a diligent few can turn the tide of madness plaguing this present world, if you believe that peace can triumph over aggression, then now is the time to re-double and throw whatever weight you have into supporting Ron Paul and his campaign against these overwhelming odds. Who knows? In the Battle of Queenston Heights, the invaders outnumbered the defenders 4-to-1 and yet those same invaders were repelled successfully.