I know a few people who want to vote for Mitt Romney because they believe he's very efficient and that every program he touches "turns to gold." But Mitt Romney is no panacea, in fact he's just like the rest of the neocons in Washington.
Last week, Governor Romney released one of the most horrifying campaign videos I've ever seen. Most political commercials are so diluted that they make just about anyone feel good. You know the ones I'm talking about -- the ones with the sounds of trumpet and dialog like "he's an honest man, caring, he has a plan that will increase jobs." When you make a video with such a supreme lack of substance, there's not a lot to disagree with. This is not that video:
This is the most blatant fear and war mongering video I've ever seen. Sure, the neocons have been making these points for years. But when have you ever seen them in such a recorded and rehearsed fashion?
There was a lot of information in such a short video, so let's take it point-by-point:
Violent, Radical, Islamic Fundamentalism is this "century's nightmare".
I won't deny that there are violent, radical groups (some of which are Islamic) that are menacing and terrorizing. But by no means do these groups hold a monopoly on this stigma. Even our own government supports these same philosophies when it suits their fancy. In a previous age, when the bad-guy-de-joeur wore a red star on his uniform, the U.S. funded Afghan mujahudeen guerrillas to fight against the USSR. This wasn't the U.S. simply coming to the aid of an ally; this was a provocation that started with the U.S. funding the mujahudeen a full six months prior to any USSR invasion of Afghanistan. We were in the Cold War with the USSR, and we saw the efforts of jihadists in Afghanistan as a means to an end. It was in the U.S.' interest to promote these jihadists then. What's so different today?
All throughout history, the U.S. (and a few other countries) have been far more violent and radical than any small terror cell.
Jihadists want a world-wide Khalifah
Update: My friend gandhi pointed out that I indeed heard the wrong word here. My apologies. The word Romney used was Caliphate not Khalifah. I'm not an expert on the etymology here, but I believe the two words are linked.
Nice big word there Mitt. I'm sure most of your future constituency understands what that means (ha!). When you say that word along with other mean sounding words it's easy to think it's derogatory without even knowing the definition of the word.
Basically, every single muslim is supposed to be a Khalifah, a representative / steward of god on this earth. A Khalifah is roughly the same as a missionary in the christian sense -- someone who upholds the principles of god and spreads his message. The Khalifah Institute does propose a plan to spread islamic principles throughout the world, they even go as far as to call for jihad. They specifically mention however, that "this is not to be a jihad of the sword, or of guns, bombs [nor] violence... that would be wrong."
Maybe Mitt is talking about some other Khalifah movement. However, for something so important as to require offensive wars I require my elected public servants to be specific. To simply say we need to fight Jihadist Khalifahs is not only insulting, but dangerous.
The U.S. is a country of Freedom Lovers
Oh, I wish this one were true. The truth of the matter is that this hasn't been the case for a very long time. If Americans love freedom, then it would follow that Americans would keep their government accountable to the very Constitution that incorporates it. If Americans were free, then they should be able to demonstrate the basic, timeless, qualities of free men and women.
Can you build on your land without a permit? Can you educate your own children without mandated curriculum and permit? Can you drive from one city to the next in a car without a permit? Can you acquire a gun without a permit (filling out the NICS is a permit!)? Can you marry the one you love without a permit? Can you die and have your body buried without a permit? Can you stay out of jail if you consume a prohibited substance? Can you stay out of jail if you tell your government that you will not fight their wars? Can you stay out of jail if you tell your government that you will not pay for something you find abhorrent? I submit to the casual observer of current events that every single facet of life in this country is subverted and has been made unfree.
Permits are permission. If you need permission you are not free. Taxes and the draft are involuntary, and equate to slavery.
Jihadists hate us for our freedoms
It's true that many jihadists (and Muslims in general) hate secularism and materialism. Did they destroy four planes and three buildings on 9/11 because of this? No. Blowback is real. The countries that have experienced terrorist bombings in the past decade are not arbitrary. They have been selected. All of these countries have had a military presence in the middle east. Switzerland has a strict non-interventionist policy and you don't see them being a target.
Republican Congressman Ron Paul has spoken very clearly about the issue of blowback. Listen to his calm, yet sobering words accompanied by this short PBS documentary confirming the reality of blowback:
Romney will increase Intelligence spending
Romney wants to increase funding of our intelligence agencies but he won't listen to them in the first place! The CIA has numerous times talked about the concept of blowback. After the Iran coup d'etat in 1953, the CIA produced a (now declassified) memo describing how blowback can be a massive consequence of what the CIA was trying to accomplish (a complete overthrow of an existing government) warning CIA operatives that "few, if any, operations are as explosive as this type."
Romney will increase military personnel by at least 100,000
The U.S. has over 1.5 Million troops deployed worldwide. We have the strongest military presence of any country in all of history. We are Pax-Americana -- a bona-fide Empire. 70% of Americans want out of Iraq. We need to support our troops by bringing them home!
Romney will monitor all telephone calls
Romney says he wants to monitor all calls Al-Qaeda makes coming into America. I say he wants to monitor all calls whatsoever. If his source of information on Al-Qaeda is coming from monitoring telephones, how can he know where Al-Qaeda is calling from before he listens to them? It's the classic chicken or the egg problem. If you want to listen to all calls Al-Qaeda is making, you have to listen to all the calls. If you know where Al-Qaeda is calling from, then what the hell are you doing sitting on your ass listening to their phone calls?
This isn't about listening to Al-Qaeda at all. This is about increasing control.
Romney will make sure the U.S. stops Iran from acquiring Nuclear weapons
Gah. At least he's forthcoming about it this time. Last week he said he'd have to consult his lawyers to see if pretty please, maybe, possibly, he could bomb the shit out of them without having to ask Congress for permission. Romney, real patriots protect the Constitution!
Even if Iran had the capability, let alone the desire, to build nuclear weapons (I doubt they do), what's the difference between Iran having nuclear weapons and the 10 or so other countries that have them? What is intrinsically wrong with having nuclear weapons? Whatever that answer is, it should be applied equally to us as well as to them.
Ron Paul is the only moral choice
The people that believe in Romney's War on Jihadists would call Dr. Ron Paul an isolationist and that this makes him somehow irresponsible. This is so very wrong on many accounts. First of all, Dr. Paul is in no way an isolationist. Is it an isolationist view to think that we should not fuck with the rest of the world by establishing military coups around the world, displacing legally and democratically elected leaders? Is it an isolationist perspective to think that we should be cultivating friends throughout the world by trading and having open dialog with them instead of provoking war by subverting their governments? How would Americans feel if another country were to do the same here? Wouldn't we too feel a little retaliatory? War is avoidable, because blowback is avoidable: just mind your own business and make friends in the process.
Ron Paul is your only moral choice for a conservative president, no matter if you're anti-war or even if you believe in "Just War" theory. Mitt Romney's war theory, just as any modern neoconservative, is fear-based. It lacks any historical perspective and is entirely unjust.
$1.2 Million in under 7 days. That has got to be some sort of libertarian record.
Thank you Dr. Paul! I know, I know you don't want to take the credit, this really is our revolution. However, it's thanks to you that we are so organized at this particular time. Liberty minded folk are a very opinionated bunch. It takes someone with true resolve and staunch views on liberty to get these kind of results. I applaud you and your campaign team for the tremendous push you have given us.
I know that my money is going towards not only a bright and hopeful election, but towards the enlightenment of thousands of people to the spirit of a free America. It's these people, that are new to the concepts of liberty, that you have made the most impact on. These are the people who will soon make the loudest and most passionate call for freedom the world has ever heard.
I first read the Tao Te Ching five years ago. I was at a different stage of my life and it didn't really have a very strong affect on me. I think I dug way too deep into it and I didn't understand its plainness. Today I read the Tao of Ron Paul and am reminded of the Tao, but this time I think I get it.
If you want to be a great leader,
you must learn to follow the Tao.
Stop trying to control.
Let go of fixed plans and concepts,
and the world will govern itself.
The more prohibitions you have,
the less virtuous people will be.
The more weapons you have,
the less secure people will be.
The more subsidies you have,
the less self-reliant people will be.
Therefore the Master says:
I let go of the law,
and people become honest.
I let go of economics,
and people become prosperous.
I let go of religion,
and people become serene.
I let go of all desire for the common good,
and the good becomes common as grass.
老子 Lao Tzu (~600 BCE)
It is amazing to me that something written 2500 years ago can apply so well to today. We cannot solve our problems with more government -- not now, and at no time in the past. There is precedent to this fact that spans all of history if we simply bother to look.
A vote for Ron Paul is a vote of confidence in ourselves; confidence that we can take care of ourselves without force. A vote for any of the other current presidential candidates is a vote of incompetance. To vote for anyone else is to believe that humans are flawed and cannot accomplish anything productive on their own - that we must mold their very lives so that they may not fail.
To any action there is an equal and opposite reaction. If our leaders subsidize all our needs and desires, we become lazy, less productive and we take away from the same source of wealth that our leaders drew upon in the first place. If we attempt to endlessly police the world, it will blowback in our faces. If we attempt to lower crime by prohibiting certain items, we will simply create more criminals at the cost of $600 per second.
There is a natural order to a peaceful and civil society. This is called the Tao. Government is not the Tao.
I'm pretty critical when it comes to the IRS, and I'm sure many people would think my beliefs on the IRS (short answer: abolishment) are too extreme. However, Congressman Ron Paul has recently spoken on this issue and has a very compelling argument that few would be able to refute:
Even today, individual income taxes account for only approximately one-third of federal revenue. Eliminating one-third of the proposed 2007 budget would still leave federal spending at roughly $1.8 trillion – a sum greater than the budget just 6 years ago in 2000! Does anyone seriously believe we could not find ways to cut spending back to 2000 levels?
He is talking about what would happen if we were to completely abolish the IRS today. What would happen? The US would have 1/3 less cash than it would otherwise, but the remaining 2/3 would still be more than the entire 2000 budget. This points out two things to me:
- The IRS would be really easy to reform, if not outright abolish. The Government would still have a plethora of avenues to aquire revenue, including constitutional methods: tarrifs and excise taxes. Even if we just abolished the IRS and did nothing else, the government would still have as much incoming revenue as it did in 2000!
- If the government would have the same revenue as it did in 2000 by cutting out an entire 1/3 of the budget, what does that say about the government's spending habits?? That means a massive increase in the budget in just the past six years.
What is so important that we're doing now that we weren't doing back in 2000? The war? Not many today will argue that anymore. We can end the war, we can get rid of all the pork spending in Washington if our Congressman are allowed to at least read the bills before they're passed and by so doing we can easily restore this nation to using constitutional methods of taxation. It just takes a bit of (re-)education:
[Education] is favourable to liberty. Freedom can exist only in the society of knowledge. Without learning, men are incapable of knowing their rights, and where learning is confined to a few people, liberty can be neither equal nor universal. --Dr. Benjamin Rush (1786)
Update: As soon as I posted this, someone mentioned to me after reading the above mentioned article by Mr. Paul that he never specifically mentions abolishing the IRS. True, it wasn't explicit; It was implicit. Mr. Paul speaks out about this a lot, so it's not very difficult to find where he stands on the issue:
By the way, when I say cut taxes, I don't mean fiddle with the code. I mean abolish the income tax and the IRS, and replace them with nothing. Ron Paul (2002)
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