Friday, 22 June 2007

Ron Paul supporters seem just a little bit loopy

Ron Paul is to the Republican candidates' field what Dennis Kucinich is to the Democrats - a parody of the stereotypical member.

His supporters have spent the last half a dozen months spamming online Republican opinion polls, as demonstrated clearly by Charles Johnson at LGF. When they're called on their activities they don't back down and actually increase their invective against those who disagree with them.

Even in this little backwater of the Internet my tongue in cheek post linking the states' debate about letting the insane vote to Ron Paul supporters resulted in a small swarm of activity.

Ron Paul is 50/1 with bookmakers to be next US President, which is about 950/1 under his true odds if you ask me, and is in a different polling galaxy in any of the major opinion polls yet his supporters insist that he is a serious candidate.

So what is it with the Ron Paul crowd?

Here are some of my theories.

  1. Ron Paul only exists on the Internet. Has anyone ever seen Ron Paul? Was that him at the debates? Sure, you can watch him on YouTube but with the quality of computer generated graphics these days are we really sure it's a real person? The fact that he gets so many votes in Internet polls and none when conducted over the phone or face to face lends weight to this theory.
  2. Ron Paul has tapped into a rich vein of hitherto unknown right wing/libertarian nutroots in the same way that John Edwards has the nutroots supporting him for the Democratic nomination.
  3. Ron Paul supporters are actually from the normal left wing nutrootery and are pretending to be on Paul's side in order to destabilise the Republican field. The fact that they use such foul, hateful language so often, in the style of the nutroots, makes this a very distinct possibility.
  4. John Edwards supporters, realising that the only way he can win is to be up against Ron Paul, are spamming the polls.
  5. A large number of Internet connected Americans whose major concern is that the US return to the Gold Standard in order to prevent an economic meltdown have pinned their hopes on the Ron Paul campaign.
Who knows what's going on with Ron Paul supporters. It sure seems like they've let a few bees out of the old intellectual apiary, though.

Ron Paul is a non-serious candidate who has one of those 'strange uncle' personalities. Like Paul, his supporters also seem to be just a little bit loopy.


Anonymous said...

You sir are wrong. Ron Paul can win this election. He draws support across the board and no one else has shown any capability to do this. If any of the other Rep. candidates win the party nomination it will be Hello Billary. One thing you got close on was how dedicated Ron's supporters are and that they are dogmatic.

Anonymous said...

Incorrect. Ron Paul is tapping into a demographic which has been growing over decades. No thanks to the military-industrial-media complex, this demographic has until now been almost completely invisible. I think you'd be surprised how much the media never tells you, or hides in plain sight.

Ron Paul supporters passionately care about a Constitutional government. They understand the country's founding principles, the concept of liberty, and understand the sharp contrast between those ideals and what we have today. They have quietly borne the oppression for many years, but now they have an opportunity to make a difference. It doesn't matter how much the pro-establishment media spins us as crazy people, or how many people fall for it, it does not alter the reality. The support is so intense not because there are a few crazies who think it would be cute, but because this revolt against the bipartisan dictatorship has been brewing under the media radar for a very long time.

Anonymous said...

I find great fault in your bias, I have seem Ron Paul supporters from all over the political philosophy spectrum, people who are fed up with how far off the country has become, from where it started more than 200 years ago as a free country. We ache to be a free country again, not the neocons labeled 'freeist country on earth'. That label is a farce, and far from what we deserve.

Anonymous said...

You couldn't be more wrong in your analysis of Paul's support.

Wait until July 15th, when Q2 fundraising numbers are being released by campaigns. You'll be floored at how much cash his "spammers" are sending!

You're not gonna stop the Revolution.

Francis W. Porretto said...

All right, enough of this nonsense.

Jack, I'm surprised and disappointed. You've demonstrated enough intellectual heft to know better. One does not castigate Smith on the basis of the behavior of Jones; Dr. Paul is not responsible for the activities of those who've misguidedly flooded the Internet with spammish material about him.

Dr. Paul is a good man who's simply gone way wrong on a key issue. I've worked with him; he's not stupid, ignorant, or deluded. He's Constitutionally astute and his positions are well thought out. On virtually every subject outside of foreign policy, he's preferable to any of his opponents.

That having been said, the Ron Paul supporters who think they can marshal a big wave behind Dr. Paul with their frenetic Internet activities are doing him and the cause of liberty a great deal of harm. If they don't settle down, Dr. Paul's name will soon be held in the same regard as Lyndon LaRouche.

Jack Lacton said...


I actually don't have a problem with Ron Paul, and I've watched him a heap of times discussing the economy, apart from the fact that he does come across as a little bit of a weird uncle and one-trick pony with the gold standard.

The point of this post was actually to see how organised the Paul supporters are in defending anything negative about him, even as fluffy as this.

It's interesting to see where the links come from, which while not conclusive seem to confirm my theory that it's people other than real Ron Paul supporters undertaking most of the activity.

Anonymous said...

Man, are you an idiot? I think so.

I've only had 5 beers, and even I know Ron Paul is a GREAT candidate. He's the only candidate who has ever gotten any of my money, that tells me something.

You're going to feel pretty stupid when the quarterly contribution report comes out and you see how much money Dr. Paul has raised. I guess you think the money is spammed too.

Scott Pearson said...

Actually, the Ron Paul following closely resembles the build-up of the Reagan supporters when the "mainstream" was clearly behind Ford in 1976. (Interestingly, Dr. Paul was one of a handful of sitting Congressmen who supported Reagan then). Reagan's support came from outside the establishment, because the standard-bearers and power-people of the day didn't want to take a chance.

If you feel good about "stay the course" politics, then a Reagan or a Ron Paul isn't for you. But if you must argue against the Paul candidacy, please try to stay on real issues, and get off the silly stuff that Little Green Footballs is made of. If you're forced to resort to name-calling and guilt-by-association arguments to win your case, it really says something about how limited the real arguments are against Dr. Paul's positions. The simple fact is that he is speaking for the majority of the people on the issues that really matter today. The fact that Congress and the Republican Party headquarters operatives are typically against him only serves to envigorate his supporters.

By the way, let's get off of this "spamming the polls" kick. It's a ludicrous argument. Most of these polls are controlled by counters that prevent double voting. Further, it should be noted that many candidates supporters have ALWAYS tried to "spam" the polls. The standard practice of bringing thousands of supporters to the Iowa Straw Poll every four years is the most obvious method. We all know that these things aren't PERFECT indicators of support, but they do mean something. The fact that Ron Paul is winning most of the online polls simply suggests that he does have support. And it's probably bigger than the support for Jim Gilmore, Duncan Hunter, Tommy Thompson, Tom Tancredo, Mike Huckabee, or Sam Brownback. The polls following the debates suggest that voters like what he says and will support him when they get a chance to hear him. All of this suggests that he is competitive. It doesn't suggest that he will win, but it suggests that he deserves a chance to be heard. This is not an unreasonable request, but somehow, many of you seem to read it to be. It makes me wonder about your true commitment to free elections.

Finally, someone commented about his foreign policy. Frankly, I don't know what is so unique about his foreign policy. He suggests that we not intervene unless it's necessary. He suggests that Iraq was a mistake. He suggests that we should have done more to get Osama binLaden, instead of wasting our time on Saddam, when it wasn't immediately necessary. All of this is majority opinion in this country, if not in Washington. You might argue that he is TOO anti-interventionist. Even if this were true, I think most of us think that erring on the side of non-intervention, at a time when we've clearly gone too far in the opposite direction, will be a wise move, at least for the short term, and will do a world of good in restoring our respect in the world. Even if we ARE forced to intervene in the Middle East again in the future, at least the world will recognize that we aren't doing it to promote empire. While it may not resolve the problems there, it may serve to reduce the number of young people who are easily recruited by Osama and his thugs. Think about it.