Dec 22, 2011

The Ron Paul Newsletters: Turn The Tables

I guess it shouldn't surprise me, now that Ron Paul is rapidly advancing in the polls, that the 'racist' Ron Paul newsletters of the 1980's and 1990's have again achieved national prominence. (for those who don't know what I am talking about, Ron Paul had a paid, investment newsletter published in his name which sometimes used dubious racial and sexual stereotypes in the content.) It is clear from the way Dr Paul has been handling the incessant questions of a hostile press about the newsletters that he considers them a non-issue and a distraction from his message. He just wants to get on to issues that impact American voters today. After all, he has--repeatedly--disavowed them and stated that they were written for him and he never read them. In this recent clip one might even be able to discern a bit of embarrassment:

As a longtime supporter I can certainly sympathize with the good Doctor, but I think  for several reasons he is responding incorrectly. He needs to turn the tables and bring it up in every media interview, campaign appearance, and floor speech he gives. Think I am nuts? Read on:

The way the issue stands right now--and the way the media has spun it is that Ron Paul is dodging the issue. The media smell blood in the water, and they will continue to attack until they have destroyed him. For one because he represents everything they despise and fear, all the while maintaining that they are just doing their job. Since they will bring it up anyway--at least at first--Dr Paul needs to bring it up himself. And then use it as a platform to expand on his message of individual liberty. If he can successfully turn it from a perceived weakness into a strength, the media will run from it as fast as they can. Meanwhile, he controls the message and gets it out as he wants it presented.

What kind of platform can 'racist' newsletters be used for? I can think of several and I am certain others can think of more. My favorite goes something like this:

Evil Reporter: "Congressman Paul, how could you have allowed someone to publish newsletters in your name which contained hateful, racist language back in the 1980's and 1990's?"
Good Doctor: "Well, as I have stated repeatedly, I disavow any racist or sexist language that was used in those newsletters. If I had read them at the time, they would never have been published. It was 20 or 30 years ago, and I was busy in my practice delivering babies and raising my family. When help writing them was offered, I accepted and never really looked at the actual published content. But you know, regardless of how distasteful they could be, it really shows just how long this class warfare using the power of coercion--government--has been going on. After the civil war, government power was used discriminate against blacks. Then in the 1960's as a sort of dubious compensation, I guess, government power was used to discriminate against whites. With  such rampant governmentally forced legal discrimination, is it any wonder the writer was predicting a race war--"
Evil Reporter: "So you think there will be a race war?"
Good Doctor: "Good heavens no! I have never thought that to begin with; the American people are too good and too smart for that. But it does mean we must get back to the rule of law! Government and laws which favor one group over another causes friction between social groups. It causes the problem. My message--the message of liberty--is one law for all. That is what the 'Rule of Law' as the founders understood it means. That is what the Constitution stands for. Regardless of if you are a Congressman or the President of some Too-Big-To-Fail Bank--or simply an unemployed carpenter or a college student. The same rules must apply to all. Both in economics and in the law." 
"People get along just fine until the government gets involved. 
Anyway, I'm sure you get the idea. I welcome your suggestions.

Bottom line: Ron Paul must own this issue. He cannot shy away from it however distasteful. And even if this seems too difficult to pull off, in my opinion it is worth a try, since Ron Paul's candidacy could well be buried by this issue otherwise.There are still too many undecided, ill-informed or hoodwinked voters who do not realize that the ideas presented in those newsletters are alien to Ron Paul's basic philosophy.