I agree with your sentiments, but it hasn't changed as much as you described. The biggest change is that YOU have wised up. Newbies to the liberty movement often do not see the paranoia and sensationalism that inevitably infests the movement. When you first hear about Ron Paul and the message of liberty the tendency is to focus on that. There is so much to learn that the intellectual will be consumed by the wealth of knowledge offered by the best teachers. In my opinion Ron Paul is the greatest voice of liberty ever, as he is incredibly knowledgeable on just about any issue he discusses and he presents his arguments so consistently and rationally. He is stronger in some areas than others, obviously, but in his 50+ years he has learned from, worked with, and befriended the best of the best and battled the worst of the worst. As a single person he could keep you actively learning for years, but he doesn't have to, because wherever Ron Paul's influence has reached, there are other intellectuals contributing and expanding the message of liberty with their own insights and perspectives.
The Daily Paul was a haven for these great people when I first discovered it 3 years ago, and it still is today (though people come and go).
This is also a curse. Wherever there is an area of great contribution, there will always, always be others, intentionally or not, who contaminate it. Libertarianism, like all other ideologies, but potentially more so, attracts nut jobs. We are all human and fallible, but some have abandoned reality. Those with delusions are often the loudest and most aggressive, and as fate would have it, influential to others.
I first started exploring Infowars and its cousin NaturalNews through the people on this website. For a period, I was sucked in by the conspiracy theory crowd. They shared many of my beliefs and my passion. A lot of it seemed so plausible, so convincing.
Then I started seeing that crowd for what it is, as many do. People warned me from the beginning! At first I fought the detractors to the conspiracy theories. How dare they! But, fortunately, I am an eternal skeptic, and over time I starting seeing more of the picture. They aren't truth seeking, they are alarmists and fear-mongers. They want you to be afraid. They reject reality and resent most authority, but take comfort and gain confidence in that there are others who do as well. They unite behind a meaningless, imaginary enemy called the New World Order. It is the perfect scapegoat, it can't be disproven and it can be found anywhere if you have an imagination.
The people you complain about, my friend, have always been here, and they always will be. Some of the most active Daily Paulers have this mindset. They have been at it for years. They have heard every single one of their claims and fallacies debunked in every way possible, but it does not matter. Many won't change. Some will see the light and escape, but others will get sucked in. They flock to people who will accept them, or at least tolerate them. No group of people are more anti-authoritarian than libertarians, so there is mutual interest, even if the motivations and goals are completely different.
If you leave here, they will follow you, as long as you are active in the libertarian community. I resent it, and am often embarrassed by it, but I have accepted it. I mock them, complain about them, and get frustrated, but I freaking love the Daily Paul and the liberty movement. The people and the knowledge that attracted you here in the first place aren't going away either.
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