Ron Paul: oil company shill

The paradoxical “progressive” flirtation with right-wing wackjob Ron Paul continues unabated. Mondoweiss is the latest to enthuse that he “opposes another neocon war for Israel.” (Remember back when the left used to blame Middle East military adventures on oil companies?) Meanwhile, the sinister nature of the Paulist agenda becomes increasingly blatant. In our last post calling out Paul as a bogus pseudo-libertarian who opposes reproductive freedom and separation of church and state, we noted his enthusiasm for the far-right John Birch Society (whose paranoid fantasies of a UN take-over of the USA fueled the militia movement in the ’90s), and facetiously asked if the Oklahoma City bombing was the kind of “revolution” he wants to see. Well, maybe it isn’t just a joke. Gawker takes note of a Ron Paul campaign ad in which he pledges to do away with the departments of Education, Interior, Housing and Commerce—with the word “gone” for each one punctuated by an image of mushroom cloud! (We’ve come a long way from Lyndon Johnson’s famous “Daisy ad,” no?) Pretty disquieting that someone who is so glib about nuclear explosions could have his finger on The Button. But, more to the point, whose interests would be served by Paul’s mania for blowing up federal agencies—such as the Interior Department, which controls some 20% of total US land area, including much resource-rich territory? Let’s take a look… notes Paul’s votes to open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) to oil drilling. A pro-oil website with the deceptive name of (they must have beat the enviros to the URL—the kicker is “jobs and energy for America”) approvingly states of Paul: “The congressman’s voting record on ANWR includes consistent support throughout his career.” Sic! They don’t mean “support” for protecting ANWR, but raping it! The website goes on the enthuse (exclamation point in original): “He also believes refuges should be privatized!”

Did you catch that? Wants to disband the Interior Department, and privatize national wildlife refuges—and, presumably, national parks, national monuments, Bureau of Land Management rangelands and all other Interior holdings. In other words, Exxon and ilk may lose their oil wars in Iraq and Afghanistan if a putative President Paul follows through on his isolationist rhetoric, but they will reap a bonanza destroying the last undeveloped public lands at home.

What else have we got? Oh yeah, New Hampshire Primary 2012 Green blog notes that Paul has flip-flopped a few times on climate change, but in 2009 called global warming a “hoax”—in fact, “one of the biggest hoaxes of all history.” On The Issues notes that he “Voted YES on barring EPA from regulating greenhouse gases” and “Voted NO on enforcing limits on CO2 global warming pollution.” The legislation at issue in this 2009 NO vote would have required utilities to supply an increasing percentage of their demand from renewables and efficiency savings.

Treehugger, before getting to the anti-environmental dirt, again notes Paul’s anti-choice position on abortion. They provide a link to Paul’s own webpage on the issue—where he states forthrightly if none too logically that he wants Roe v. Wade “repealed.” (Anyone who passed civics class knows that court decisions cannot be “repealed” like laws—they can only be overturned by the courts.) Treehugger correctly states: “That’s about the most un-libertarian thing imaginable (libertarians being obsessed with getting the state out of our private lives and all.” Thank you. They next note that Paul wants to abolish birthright citizenship, and opposes an “amnesty” for what he calls “illegal immigrants.”

But when it comes to environmental issues, the man who would betray women and immigrants into the hands of Big Brother suddenly sees any public oversight as an onerous menace to liberty. Here’s the energy plank from his website:

Remove restrictions on drilling, so companies can tap into the vast amount of oil we have here at home.

Repeal the federal tax on gasoline. Eliminating the federal gas tax would result in an 18 cents savings per gallon for American consumers.

Lift government roadblocks to the use of coal and nuclear power.

Eliminate the ineffective EPA. Polluters should answer directly to property owners in court for the damages they create—not to Washington.

Great. More Gulf oil spills, more Fukushima-type disasters, and not even any regulatory regime to provide the threadbare pretense of public oversight that currently obtains. This is what you’re cheering on, you pseudo-left nudniks who support Ron Paul. Think about it.

  1. World War 4 Report exercises private property prerogative
    The last time we dissed Ron Paul, scores of his supporters came out of the woodwork to annoy us with demoralizingly stupid and reactionary comments. Well guys, this time it’s gonna cost you. Since you’re all such avid supporters of the free market, we’re sure you’ll understand that we are asking money to approve your comments—a bargain price of just $5 per comment! You may use our PayPal button below. Please use the same name on the comment as on your PayPal purchase, so we know which comments to approve. And of course, please read our Posting Policy, because our editorial standards still apply. OK? Five bucks a shot. Fire at will.

  2. Talk gets cheaper!
    OK, you skinflints, we’re dropping the price to a buck per comment, just for you! C’mon then, let’s show our commitment to the magic of the market! Talk doesn’t get any cheaper than this…

    1. The Market
      (As an aside, there is nothing wrong with my math. You originally set your price at $5.00, so I paid $5.00.)

      I am not sure you will have many takers here. The market does not simply translate into your website charging per comment. The flipside of it is that many people will not think it worthwhile to spend money on a report/site they had not heard about until recently. Most of them would not even pay to comment on a mainstream, popular website that would receive more traffic and have more lies to correct.

      I support Ron Paul because I support far less regulation, far fewer Government agencies, and control over those things which must be overseen per our current cultural norms. Ron himself recognizes this, which is why he is not preaching a need to demolish Social Security and various forms of welfare immediately. It simply will not come to pass. I support a large number of his ideas, though they are far from mainstream. I support the man just as I have in prior elections, and have had the amusing experience of seeing so many of his predictions and ideas come to pass.

      Let’s scoot all of that out of the picture for a moment. Let’s break it down to the most likely scenario. A “President Ron Paul” would not be able to wave a magic wand and get everything done. He would have to work with the Congress, which will likely be deadlocked against him. Good! A Congress which actually does very little would be much preferred to this one, which does much damage, then goes home on vacation. A President willing to veto and willing to forego the Executive Order route of getting everything done… ah what a dream that would be for me.

      1. …equals oppression
        (OK, you get your first four responses for free.)

        It figures the one person who is willing to pay for the privilege of using our website actually has something reasonably intelligent and respectful to say, rather than just wanting to spew vitriol. Our intention was not get rich, but weed out the wingnuts. It worked.

        However, we completely disagree with you. The problem with the right-wing “libertarians” is that they fail to distinguish between “freedom” for people and for capital. As Karl Marx wrote “On the Question of Free Trade” in 1848 (!):

        Do not allow yourselves to be deluded by the abstract word freedom. Whose freedom? It is not the freedom of one individual in relation to another, but the freedom of capital to crush the worker.

        As long as the planet’s wealth is concentrated in the hands of the 1%, the “free market” is a mechanism for trampling the freedom of the rest of us—evicting us from our homes, depriving us of our bread, stealing our clean air and water, etc. True “individual liberty” for those of us in the 99% is secured by vigorous public restraints on the workings of the market (e.g., rent control laws, labor standards, environmental regulations, a progressive tax structure, etc.). Ron Paul is dangerous because he is leading the well-intentioned into the trap of “free-market” ideology, which is deeply inimical to the interests of the 99%.

        As for what a (*shudder*) “President Ron Paul” would or wouldn’t be able to do… Given the juxtaposition of forces in this country, it’d be pretty easy for him to push through his anti-worker and anti-environmental agenda, especially if he gets a Republican-controlled Congress. It will be considerably more difficult (if not impossible) for him to legalize drugs. And if you notice, the Pentagon, Prisons Bureau, CIA, FBI, DEA and Homeland Security are not on his list of agencies he would “blow up.” So the apparatus of the police state would be left intact. Instead of drugs and terrorism being the pretexts, it would be “illegal” immigration and the defense of private property against (low-level) criminals. A Paul presidency would be an unmitigated disaster.

  3. Ignorant skinflints for Ron Paul
    Some ignorant skinflint who wouldn’t even cough up the one buck to get his comment approved (I deleted it) asserted that Paul has never taken any money from “lobbyists.” Well maybe not, but the Federal Election Commission tells us that he’s taken plenty of money from oil companies.

    Wanna try again? One buck a shot.

    1. More of the Same
      I’m not particularly a Ron Paul supporter, but I do see the appeal. You make very good points about why he would be awful, and I agree with them, which is why I’m not a supporter. But, to his credit, he says in no uncertain terms that he would
      1. End the wars
      2. End the USA Patriot Act
      3. End the “War on Drugs”

      Most of his other policies are as hideous as you describe. I think the appeal, though, at least for some, is that the others out there are similarly hideous, whether Republican or Democrat. If we’re going to have the same-old same-old, might as well achieve the above three worthy goals.

      That’s not a position I agree with either. As hideous as Obama has been, he doesn’t appear to be out to overtly curtail abortion rights or abolish the Interior Dept. But I think it’s important to understand where supporters of that position comes from, and not dismiss them out of hand.


      1. End the Civil Rights Act?
        Robbie, the fact that Paul talks a good populist anti-war and (except where abortion and immigrants’ rights are concerned!) civil libertarian line makes him more dangerous, not less—precisely because (as with Pat Buchanan) fuzzy-minded progressives are in danger of being taken in. “Understanding” his supporters doesn’t mean cutting them a pass. The guy is a far-right rascal. And he certainly is not “more of the same.” Privatizing the national parks, abolishing the EPA and repealing birthright citizenship would be dramatic turns for the worse.

        BTW, I approved your post because of your generous support (financial and technical) to WW4 Report in the past, including quite recently. All others must donate a dollar to post in any item about Ron Paul.