Tom Mullen's blog
Charles Goyette has more in common with Ron Paul than merely similar views. Like Paul, Goyette has paid a price for standing by his principles. He walked away from a promising career in conservative talk radio because he refused to support the Iraq war. In 2004, he endorsed Libertarian Party nominee Michael Badnarik for president.
If you like what Ron Paul has to say about freedom, the economy and U.S. foreign policy, you’re going to love Goyette’s new book, Red and Blue and Broke All Over: Restoring America’s Free Economy.
Goyette blames Republicans and Democrats equally for the mess we’re in, just as Paul does. However, what makes this book so valuable is Goyette’s ability to express timeless philosophical ideas in simple, everyday terms and then demonstrate how those ideas apply to today’s problems here in the real world.
The book is divided into three sections, entitled “Liberty,” “The State” and “Dead Ahead,” respectively. Goyette lays the philosophical foundation by explaining the inextricable link between liberty and non-aggression, recognized by modern libertarians and the founding fathers. He quotes Murray Rothbard who said that liberty is “the absence of molestation by other people,” and Friedrich Hayek who maintained that it is “the condition in which man is not subject to coercion by another or others.”
TAMPA, April 7, 2012 – GOP frontrunner Mitt Romney continues to win primaries and Ron Paul still won’t go away.
Part of the reason is that the Paul campaign understands the primary process and knows a little history. Romney’s support is lukewarm, while Paul’s actual delegate total is dramatically understated.
As Robert Wenzel points out, Paul is a lot like Warren Harding. Harding went into the brokered 1920 convention with only 6% of the delegates, but emerged as the party’s nominee. Harding won the general election in a landslide and took a very non-interventionist approach to the Depression of 1921.
Free market economists cite Harding’s refusal to intervene in that crisis for the quick recovery that followed.
So, there is no reason not to take Ron Paul at his word when he says that he is still in the contest to win the nomination. Still, speculation persists that he has made a deal with Romney for an eventual endorsement.
In return, Paul would get a speaking slot at the convention, consideration for his son Rand, or concessions in the party platform.
Both Paul and Romney have repeatedly denied this. Paul acknowledges that he is open to talk to the other candidates and that Romney, a personal friend, is easier to talk to. However, anyone who believes Ron Paul will simply endorse the nominee in exchange for political favors doesn’t understand Ron Paul or his Revolution.
Tampa, Fl., April 2, 2012 —The Republican Party has energized its base around the idea that Barack Obama must be defeated to save America from “socialism.” They won a majority in the House in 2010 by focusing on Obamacare. They claim that this election is a turning point. Obama must be defeated or America will be “fundamentally changed.”
There is only one problem. All of the candidates they are running will lose to Obama, with the exception of Ron Paul.
In order to win the general election, the Republicans need independents and Democrats. They also need a media narrative that shows a clear contrast between their candidate and Obama. They get all of this with Paul and none of it with Romney, Santorum, or Gingrich.
During the 2010 elections, Republicans pulled off a rhetorical coup. They successfully labeled Obamacare as “socialism” while at the same time mobilizing millions of senior citizens against the program because it would hurt Medicare. Hats off to their spin doctors. It won’t be that easy this year. If they want to attack Obama on Obamacare, they can’t run a candidate who signed the same program into law in Massachusetts (Romney), who supported its individual mandate for twenty years (Gingrich), or who voted for the Medicare prescription drug benefit (Santorum).
Santorum hasn’t endorsed the individual mandate, but Obama can argue that he’s all for government healthcare and “spreading the wealth around” because of Medicare Part D. The Republican base might swallow Santorum’s rebuttals, but for the rest Obamacare gets neutralized.
TAMPA, March 31, 2012 – In their mad dash to create the long awaited general election narrative, media outlets have pronounced Ron Paul’s campaign dead.
They now speculate about what his supporters may do when he drops out. The Associated Press reports that Romney has over ten times the delegates that Ron Paul has secured. Reuters reports that Paul is far behind in Wisconsin and that his supporters have finally conceded that he can’t win the nomination.
None of this is true. Romney has not secured 568 delegates. Hundreds of those delegates won’t be determined until Republican state conventions, many of which haven’t happened yet.
As I’ve reported before, there is very credible evidence that Ron Paul will emerge from those conventions with the majority of delegates in many states. Texas, New York and California haven’t even held their primaries yet. Those three states alone control over four hundred delegates.
In many states, there is no cause-effect relationship between the popular vote and the delegates awarded to each candidate. Delegates are awarded via a completely separate process that doesn’t utilize the popular vote totals in any way. The purpose of the popular vote is to inform the eventual delegates of the preferences of voters in their states. That’s why many of those states allow Democrats and independents to vote. They want the eventual delegates to know who those voters prefer. That tells them who has the best chance to win in the general election.
As technology has advanced and the world has “grown smaller,” it has become increasingly evident that little miracles don’t really happen. By “little miracles,” I mean people levitating, disappearing, parting seas, or making the sun stop in the sky. If they did occur, we’d be watching them on You Tube. But they don’t. That’s a good thing, because it leaves us less distracted from the real miracles: that we are here, that we live in a universe governed by natural laws that explain the world around us and that we have been blessed with reason to discover those laws.
In addition to the natural, physical laws that cause the planets to rotate around their stars and the plants to photosynthesize sunlight, there are also natural, moral laws. Like the physical laws, we are able to discover these by reason. First, we gather facts that we can observe directly with our senses. We then use reason to draw conclusions from those facts.
Daily Paul founder Michael Nystrom did me the honor of allowing to speak to the media on behalf of Daily Paul. WNYC was interested in the grassroots reaction to Dr. Paul's latest fundraising report and his candidacy thus far. Here is the article from their website. Please check it out.
During the first 2 months of the Republican presidential primary contest, the mainstream media consistently reported that Ron Paul had failed to secure a win in any state. While Paul had likely accumulated the majority of delegates in several caucus states, including Iowa, Maine, Nevada, Alaska, Minnesota and possibly several more, he had not placed first in the straw polls in any of those states.
Despite the fact that the straw poll is non-binding and ultimately has nothing to do with selecting the party’s nominee, the media consistently reported the straw poll winner as the winner of the state caucus. They even went so far as to project the delegates won by each candidate based upon that candidate’s percentage of the straw poll vote. This is misleading because the straw poll results have nothing to do with the allocation of delegates in most caucus states The delegate process is completely separate and takes place after the straw poll is over.
The media has not missed an opportunity to point out that Ron Paul has not won a state in this election cycle, although those listening carefully heard John King admit after the Arizona debate that Paul was in second place in terms of delegates. This was the result of several strong second place finishes and several wins - if one defines a win as securing the most delegates. However, the media recognizes the straw poll winner as the “winner” regardless of who actually gets the delegates.
That is, until Ron Paul wins a straw poll. Then the rules change.
Heading into “Super Tuesday,” many conservatives lament that they do not like any of the remaining Republican candidates for president. Romney is too moderate, Gingrich too much a “Washington insider,” and Santorum both an insider and a guaranteed loser against Obama thanks to his willingness to bare his soul about some of his more outlandish socially conservative views.
That leaves Ron Paul, who would seem to be the ideal conservative candidate. Paul’s Plan to Restore America actually cuts $1 trillion from the federal budget in his first year as president, including eliminating the Department of Education that Ronald Reagan promised to abolish.
Paul is the only candidate that actually disagrees with President Obama in principle on “spreading the wealth around.” Paul doesn’t just nibble a few pennies away from financially insignificant welfare programs. He actually has a funded plan to let young people opt out of Medicare and Social Security. This is really a plan to responsibly end these programs. Government-mandated programs only survive because people are forced to participate. If conservatives really do oppose socialism, they should agree with Paul on this. Where do they think Social Security got its name?
For a large group of conservatives, they are with Paul right up until he explains his foreign policy. Suddenly, not only does the courtship end, they stop taking calls and change their phone numbers. That’s unfortunate because most conservatives make this decision upon a completely distorted view of Paul’s foreign policy.
Despite his big-government record as a governor, Mitt Romney has run for president as a conservative who would allow the free market to work. To bolster his credibility, he points to his success as CEO of Bain Capital. Romney led that company to become one of the largest and most successful private equity investment firms in the nation.
Many of his supporters have been able to look past the fact that he consistently raised taxes and pioneered Obamacare in Massachusetts because of this private sector success. They echo Romney’s argument that “the government should be run like a business” and believe that only a proven, successful businessman can do the job.
There are two problems here. The first is that history has already shown that successful businessmen are terrible for the free market whenever they get anywhere near government power. The second is that government cannot ever be run like a business. Its very nature makes that utterly impossible.
Regarding the first problem, one need only study the 19th century. If you don’t like the progressive movement, you can thank the 19th century Republican Party for creating the conditions that led to its birth.
Since the beginning of the Republican Presidential Primary race, we have heard that Ron Paul is unelectable. While many conservatives like some of Paul’s ideas on domestic policy, his non-interventionist foreign policy is supposedly a deal-breaker. Even in articles praising Paul on particular issues, reporters have without exception felt compelled to remind us that there is absolutely no chance that Ron Paul will win the Republican nomination for president. This “unelectable” label has been used exclusively against Paul.
With only four candidates left in the race, the lead has changed hands several times. The current leader is Rick Santorum, fresh off primary wins in Minnesota, Colorado, and Missouri. Since those victories, the media have been trumpeting Santorum as the new frontrunner while completely ignoring the proverbial elephant in the room – Rick Santorum is unelectable.
It’s still early in the Republican primary season. Only 9 of the 41 primaries/caucuses have occurred. The nomination is a long way from being decided. Any one of the four remaining candidates can not only still win it, but can still win it by a landslide. Large victories on Super Tuesday and in the California, New York, and Texas contests can all but nullify any value of victories obtained so far. So why do the candidates fight so hard to win in small states like Maine and Nevada?
The answer is momentum. Right or wrong, most voters are in some way affected by their perception of whether each candidate has the ability to win, rather than strictly by their political positions. Republican primary voters consider two questions. Can he win the nomination? Can he win the general election?
Thus, victories in these early and – from a quantitative perspective – meaningless primary contests are valuable to candidates purely for the effect they may have on the minds of voters in bigger states.
Ron Paul has chosen to focus his campaign on the caucus states, where he can acquire delegates even if he does not finish first in the contest. That strategy seems to have been successful so far, as Paul has locked up delegates in excess of his percentage of the straw poll votes. However, he and his supporters also know that he needs a win in at least one state to avoid going into the big contests with the disadvantage of not having one.
Paul’s best shots to win so far have been the caucuses in Iowa, Nevada, and Maine. Since long before the voting started, Paul’s supporters have had their eyes on these states due to the receptiveness there to Paul’s ideas and the conduciveness of their caucus processes to Paul’s strong political ground game. Paul finished in striking distance of first in Iowa and lost by less than 200 votes in Maine. He finished far behind Romney in Nevada, but was in contention for a very respectable 2nd place finish. He ended up finishing a close third to Newt Gingrich.
Coincidentally, those three caucuses where Paul had the best chance to win are the only three states where some sort of controversy or irregularity has arisen in the election process.
It is no accident that so many of the books and movies about the Old West are set in Texas. There is something about Texas that stirs the soul like no other place in America. What is the reason for this mysterious phenomenon? It is not a mystery at all. It is the yearning for freedom.
From before its birth as a republic or a state within this union, Texas has been a place where people have gone to be free. As an isolated state in the Mexican republic, Texas provided a sanctuary for all who wished to live their own lives without interference from a distant capital. When the Mexican government attempted to exert centralized, despotic power over the free people of Texas, your ancestors fought with Santa Anna on the side of the federalists. When that general later repudiated liberty and betrayed the Texans that had fought for it by his side, the people of Texas stood against him and won their freedom again.
Americans have always thought of Texas as an independent state that only reluctantly joined the union and has had one foot out the door ever since. That is not to say that Texans are unpatriotic. On the contrary, Texas is the last place in America where the founding principle of federalism still seems to live. None doubt that Texas is there to support and defend her fellow states. However, any American who loves liberty has always fondly imagined Texas’ stance towards the federal government to be, “Don’t push us too far or we’ll leave. We’re quite capable of taking care of ourselves.”
"For were the impulses of conscience clear, uniform, and irresistibly obeyed, man would need no other lawgiver; but that not being the case, he finds it necessary to surrender up a part of his property to furnish means for the protection of the rest..."
- Thomas Paine, Common Sense (1776)
There were not many surprises in President Obama's 2012 state of the union address on Tuesday. He touted what he claims are the accomplishments of his administration and pushed his left-leaning economic agenda. For the president, all economic growth has its roots in some sort of government intervention, including "help financing a new plant, equipment, or training for new workers," giving "community colleges the resources they need to become community career centers," or trying to "spur energy innovation with new incentives." Of course, further expanding a government that already spends about 50% more than it collects in taxes can only be accomplished one way - by collecting a lot more taxes.
No matter how acrimonious the Republican primaries get, all of the candidates agree on one thing: Barack Obama must be defeated in November 2012. For 3 of the 4 remaining candidates, that is virtually the only important issue in the Republican primary race. Obama must be defeated and the only issue to resolve in the primaries is who has the best chance of doing so. Only Ron Paul asks the questions that should follow logically: Why is it so important to defeat Obama and what will you do differently from him?
In response, most of the Republicans offer only platitudes. "Obama believes in taking from one person and giving to another. He wants to turn the United States into a European social democracy with a massive welfare state, etc." I happen to agree on these points with one caveat - the United States already is a European-style social democracy. That boat sailed many decades ago. With a welfare state measured in trillions that dwarfs the entire economies of most nations of the world, the United States is a poster child for social democracy and is now listed 10th on the Index of Economic Freedom.
However, assuming that Barack Obama is supportive of this and the Republican candidates are not, there must be fundamental philosophical differences between them and Obama that would translate into tangible policy differences. However, if one listens closely to what they actually say, none of the Republican candidates actually disagrees with Obama in principle on any single issue or identifies a specific power of the presidency that they would exercise differently - except for Ron Paul.
Now here's another tale of our castaways.
Imagine if life on the island were different. Instead of seven stranded castaways, there were only four: Gilligan, the Skipper, Mr. Howell, and Ben Bernanke.
Besides non-existent ratings without Ginger and Mary Ann, some other things would be different. Imagine that there was only one thing to buy on the island, coconuts. Now, of course, this takes a willing suspension of disbelief, because we know that these four people would need more than just coconuts to survive. They would need clothing and shelter and might want other comforts that the island might conceivably provide. They would all provide different services to each other and trade them for the services of their fellow castaways. But in this example, the only thing that they trade for are coconuts.
Mr. Howell owns the coconut orchard, which produces 100 coconuts per year. Mr. Bernanke is in charge of the currency, the Island Reserve Notes (IRNs). In order to purchase the only available product for sale on the island, one must use IRNs. Barter or the use of other commodities to make this purchase is prohibited. Each coconut costs 1 IRN.