The (im)plausible defense of the typical Paulinista when faced with Ron Paul’s racist newsletters is to say, “He didn’t write them. He didn’t even read them. He definitely doesn’t agree with them. He only published them.”
The hardcore true believers in St. Paul’s divinity are living life in 3-D: Denial, deflection and dismissal. They see conspiracies everywhere and blame everywhere but where it belongs–with Ron Paul.
Nothing will shake the faith of the faithful in Paul and that is fine by me. I hope he wins Iowa and causes Karl Rove and Sean Hannity’s heads to explode and the GOP establishment to commit ritual seppuku. That would give me great pleasure and much joy.
Paul’s rap won’t translate far beyond Iowa, but he would throw a severe monkey wrench into the Mitt Romney Coronation. Paul might even be emboldened enough to go the independent route and send GOP hopes of ousting President Obama crashing and burning.
I’d like that.
The New Republic posted excerpts from some of Ron Paul’s newsletters from the Nineties.
“A Special Issue on Racial Terrorism” analyzes the Los Angeles riots of 1992: “Order was only restored in L.A. when it came time for the blacks to pick up their welfare checks three days after rioting began. … What if the checks had never arrived? No doubt the blacks would have fully privatized the welfare state through continued looting. But they were paid off and the violence subsided.”
This December 1990 newsletter describes Martin Luther King Jr. as “a world-class adulterer” who “seduced underage girls and boys” and “replaced the evil of forced segregation with the evil of forced integration.”
A February 1991 newsletter attacks “The X-Rated Martin Luther King.”
An October 1990 edition of the Political Report ridicules black activists, led by Al Sharpton, for demonstrating at the Statue of Liberty in favor of renaming New York City after Martin Luther King. The newsletter suggests that “Welfaria,” “Zooville,” “Rapetown,” “Dirtburg,”and “Lazyopolis ” would be better alternatives—and says, “Next time, hold that demonstration at a food stamp bureau or a crack house.”
A May 1990 issue of the Ron Paul Political Reportcites Jared Taylor, who six months later would go onto found the eugenicist and white supremacist periodical American Renaissance.
The January 1993 issue of the Survival Report worries about America’s “disappearing white majority.”
The July 1992 Ron Paul Political Reportdeclares, “Jury verdicts, basketball games, and even music are enough to set off black rage, it seems,” and defends David Duke. The author of the newsletter—presumably Paul—writes, “My youngest son is starting his fourth year in medical school. He tells me there would be no way to persuade his fellow students of the case for economic liberty.”
A March 1993 Survival Reportdescribes Bill Clinton’s supposedly “illegitimate children, black and white: ‘woods colts’ in backwoods slang.”
The further we go into the depths of Paul’s past in peddling prejudice the more examples there emerge indicating perhaps Paul was not as unsympathetic to the sentiments expressed in his newsletters as he says now.
A newly unearthed subscription pitch circa 1993, this time bearing the signature of Paul himself. It reads like a caricature of the conspiratorial, unhinged, early ’90s militia movement, the kind of thing that would make the John Birch Society blush. Written in the first person, it warns of threats from the “demonic fraternity” we know of as Yale’s Skull and Bones society, the Trilateral Commission, the “perverted, pagan” rituals at Bohemian Grove, a global government, “the coming race war,” the Council on Foreign Relation, and FEMA. Paul (or his ghostwriter, at least) carefully explains that you can trust his view that the federal government is behind AIDS, because he’s a doctor:
Paul’s newsletters weren’t just a form of political expression or “educational” (as he bragged in a 1995 C-Span interview)—they were a highly lucrative endeavor. In 1993 alone, Paul’s publishing company brought in a million dollars. The newsletter was published for decades, which suggests that Paul stood to make a lot of money from it. Paul has attempted to laugh that charge away, but that’s a lot different than refuting it. And from the pitch letter sent out under Paul’s name, his was a hard sell, perfectly calibrated to cash in on fears. “[B]ad times offer the greatest profit opportunities,” he writes. The government’s plans will “chill your blood.” “Help me help you survive.” “The holocaust of the underground economy.” “You may not have much time left.” By imparting this information, Paul claimed he might be placing his life at risk: “I’ve been told not to talk, but these stooges don’t scare me.” The letter concludes with these stirring words: “There’s no time to waste. The new money may not come until next year. Or it may be imposed tomorrow. You should subscribe today.”
If the Ron Paul Survival Report wasn’t a sincere expression of the congressman’s views, it was nonetheless a scheme to profit by stirring up the worst fears of a small group of the population. Which is why as long as Paul continues to duck and weave rather than address the very real questions posed by his newsletters, the controversy will not go away.
Remember in 2008 when Obama had to give his speech in Philadelphia distancing himself from Reverend Wright and publicly rebuking him? That’s the sort of speech Ron Paul needs to give. NOW.
It won’t change my mind about him. That ship has sailed. But for others who like some of Paul’s positions but are troubled by the way the supposed straight shooter keeps changing his explanations and won’t address the matter directly and forthrightly it could be the difference between victory and obscurity.
Paul would have you think he’s not your garden variety Republican. His willingness to pander to racial fears and to profiteer from that fear places him squarely in the GOP mainstream. He wants Americans to think only he has the moral fiber and courage to be president.
As it stands, he’s just a coward.
- Ron Paul: Yea I Wrote The Newsletters, But Not Those Icky Parts (outsidethebeltway.com)
- Editorial: Mr. Paul’s Discredited Campaign (nytimes.com)
- ‘Racist newsletter’ timeline: What Ron Paul has said (csmonitor.com)
- Ron Paul Denial Watch: Only ‘Eight To Ten Sentences’ Were Offensive (littlegreenfootballs.com)