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The Ron Paul argument

Justin Webb | 18:39 UK time, Thursday, 8 November 2007

Let's take the Ron Paul bull by the horns. I like the fellow: I have just been watching him clashing with the Chairman of the Fed, Ben Bernanke. He made, as he often does, a kind of "emperor's new clothes" case; arguing that US interest rates have been artificially low for many years, the result of which has been to debauch the currency and store up future crises in the US economy.

ronpaul_ap203b.jpgBen Bernanke pointed out that a worker paid in dollars and spending in dollars does not suffer from a fall in the dollar's price abroad (unless he buys imported goods) but in a sense he and the congressman were not addressing the same subject; Ron Paul talks very big picture. And his voice is an interesting one. (In case anyone hasn't heard of him we are talking about the libertarian Republican candidate, who is best known as the sole Republican opponent of the Iraq war.)

To me he is a wonderful reminder of the intellectual freedom that persists in American politics in spite of the deadening effect of money. I have written before about the need for those of us with claims to impartiality to treat those the parties regard as fringe candidates seriously; it is not for us to attack or defend, but to report and analyse.

But there is a risk, isn't there, that the voices backing these candidates become shrill, and annoy those they ought to be courting. Have we reached that stage? Not for me to say, of course...

Comments   Post your comment

  • 1.
  • At 08:04 PM on 08 Nov 2007,
  • Sam Davis wrote:

Bravo for your unbiased notes on Ron Paul, clearly, to me, the ethical and principled candidate in this contest.

Mr Webb, look forward to a longer letter mentioning Dr Paul at length in answer to your earlier question about who will be the nominees. I answered that - and also the question who *should* be the nominees.

Dr. Paul certainly. He's just like Ivory Soap, 99.99% pure.

  • 2.
  • At 08:44 PM on 08 Nov 2007,
  • Sarbo wrote:

As far as I can tell, Ron Paul is the only candidate in the entire US presidential race that appears to make any sense when he speaks. He hews to the simplest and most basic tenets of libertarianism- free markets and free people. As such, he shows libertarianism for what it is: the only coherent political theory that still makes any kind of sense these days.

Regarding his arguments about interest rates: he is probably right that interest rates were kept too low for too long, but interest rates are only one of the many very complex variables that determine exchange rates. The Fed certainly needs to take a considerable amount of blame for the housing bubble here in the US, but there were many other factors leading to the subprime blowout and the precipitous fall in the dollar's value.

It is unfortunate that Ron Paul has almost no chance of being elected POTUS. He is probably the only candidate in the field that understands economics properly, and seems to be the only one that can string together a coherent sentence about social policy that isn't patronising or fundamentalist in tone.

  • 3.
  • At 09:15 PM on 08 Nov 2007,
  • Andy wrote:


I am a libertarian (by priciple, not an official member) and yes I like Ron Paul's idea.

However, I am a little bit annoyed by the passionate supporters he has.
The strength of Ron Paul lies in the fact that he is an idealist; or even '99.99% pure' as previous commenter Sam Davis noted. The problem for me is, a lot of his supporters like to point out that we, the non-idealist voters as either dumb enough not to be idealist, or are corrupt in nature.

I am a pragmatic person, and in the current state of politics in the US I truly believe passionate idealism, the one Paul has, makes it hard for you to win votes. It's hard since you will likely scare off the corporations, media, other people with vested interest in the status quo.
Having said that, should I give my vote to him, or use it to back 'the least evil' of the electable candidates, and in doing so making my vote counts?
Being called stupid for considering this isn't helping his case.

Will it be good for the US if Paul wins? Yes
Will he surprise us with how well he'll do in the primary? I hope so
Will he win the presidency? No

  • 4.
  • At 09:36 PM on 08 Nov 2007,
  • Peter wrote:

Ron Paul's supporters are most certainly hurting his case. On the internet it is near impossible to go somewhere without running into some supporter spamming a bulletin board, blog, or social networking site. The biggest problem with his campaign, however, are his positions. Simply put, any candidate who would like to abolish income tax, the Dept. of Education, Homeland Security, FEMA, and the CIA will never become president. This is without mentioning his support for repealing the direct popular election of Senators.

  • 5.
  • At 09:44 PM on 08 Nov 2007,
  • basports wrote:

I think it is great to see so many people excited about a candidate. I haven't seen it since Kennedy, or Reagan. It doesn't bother me one bit that people spam for what they believe. I think it's refreshing to see some people actually care.
Only 6% of Republican voters voted in the primary for Bush. From what I've seen how much support Paul has, well, it may be well over 6%. The top tier may have the money from where? Who knows, but Paul has the people coming out to vote.

“It is well enough that people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning.” ~Henry Ford

Will it be good for the US if Paul wins? Yes
Will he surprise us with how well he'll do in the primary? I hope so
Will he win the presidency? Probably yes.

  • 6.
  • At 10:28 PM on 08 Nov 2007,
  • Jon wrote:

I am British so have no vote in this. But I see American Democracy is endangered, and if Americans don't wake up their freedoms will be gone, and all our freedoms will go the same way shortly after. Ron Pauls supporter are really enthusastic because they see Ron Paul as perhaps the only person on the horizon who offers the chance to change things. They are evangelical about this, because they feel that, saving Americans from its government and the world from the Nuclear armagedon promised by the other candidates as more important and more urgent, than any other issue, for them it is not just another election.

Many of these people are young an idealists, so you will have to forgive them, their enthusiasm. You will have to look past that to see they are doing it because they really believe in what America once stood for, and I for one hope that they succeed.

  • 7.
  • At 10:41 PM on 08 Nov 2007,
  • Peter MacMan wrote:

At last some mention of Dr Paul. Better late than never. I am British but have been captivated by the Ron Paul phenomenon since he declared himself a candidate. Truth is a very powerful force. Ron Paul has already raised America in the eyes of many observers worldwide. Good luck America. Hope you choose the honest man this time, you need a doctor not a lawyer. Well done Mr Webb for acknowledging Ron Paul a man who embodies hope for many people including myself. I look forward to a newsnight special.

  • 8.
  • At 11:41 PM on 08 Nov 2007,
  • Jason wrote:

I think Ron Paul is hurting Ron Paul's case more than his supporters. Anyone who wants to destroy the Dept. of Education, Homeland Security, FEMA, and CIA is someone who shares too many common goals with America's enemies to ever be president.

Ron Paul against the odds

Ron Paul makes an impressive candidate and would be a brilliant President like were Kennedy & Lincoln. Incidentally all three warned us against international money lenders today as Ron Paul explains they have become the Federal Reserve among many other organizations including IMF and BIS.
American Dollars are issue out of thin air.

  • 10.
  • At 06:26 AM on 09 Nov 2007,
  • elba llavallol wrote:

People like him because he is a man of integrity, an inteligent ,a courageous man.

We hope now in this difficult, sad times, that common sense and decency will prevail.

My best wishes Dr. Paul

  • 11.
  • At 07:58 AM on 09 Nov 2007,
  • william wrote:

I support Ron Paul because he is a man unlike all the other candidates who is against a foreign policy that promotes wars to "spread democracy"
As a 3 or 4 year old boy I have seen an Englishman get tortured by Japanese soldiers on the island of Sumatra.He tried to escape the concentration camp we were in by swimming across the river to get to the jungle on the other side.
War is terrorism and it is demeaning to us all.

  • 12.
  • At 02:12 PM on 09 Nov 2007,
  • Frank P. wrote:

Justin Webb:

Thank you for your article on presidential candidate Congresman Dr. Ron Paul. By closing some of the over 700 overseas U.S. military installations in over 130 countries President Ron Paul will save the citizens of the USA hundreds of billions of dollars a year of expenses.
Congressman Ron Paul has proposed the Senior Citizens Tax Elimination Act to real all taxes on Social Security Benefits, the Social Security Preservation Act to guarantee that money paid into the Social Security System is used only for Social Security and the Social Security for Americans Only Act. Presdient Ron Paul will protect our nation and our citizens' welfare.

  • 13.
  • At 02:32 PM on 09 Nov 2007,
  • W. Gary Johnson, New York, NY wrote:

As Ben Bernanke correctly pointed out to Congressman Paul, those Americans who grow their own food, sew their own clothes from locally produced fabrics, heat their homes with wood from the backyard and walk everywhere have no reason to be concerned about the decline of the dollar.
Those of us who live in the real world do have reason for concern, and it is a good thing we have someone like Dr. Paul looking after our interests.

  • 14.
  • At 04:35 PM on 09 Nov 2007,
  • Kate wrote:

As a supporter of Ron Paul, there are many diverse citizens whom also support Dr. Paul. I am very conservative and have been a registered GOP member for 30 yrs. I only see one real conservative in the 2008 presidential race and his name is none other than Ron Paul. Do the truthers hinder the campaigns venue for success? I would state that whether the 911 possible conspiracy be true or not , their verbalization of it certainly doesnot help the Ron Paul campaign. After the admittedly fake Fema news release that was given concerning the wildfires in CA. I want you to know that the republicans whom support Dr. Paul donot all have their heads in the sand. We do know that BIG government is capable of many unsavory actions With that said, I, as well as many others like me would like to see this rather small group of what the MSM call "truthers" state Ron Pauls " message" rather than tying to further their own agendas. The facts surrounding 911 or a new investigation if need be can be taken care of once we have elected Ron Paul to the presidency in 2008. Thank You for your attention to this matter. I am not attempting to be condescending, but rather factual to how many conservatives such as myself think. I say be excited, but be excited for the Ron Paul message and please keep your own theories where they belong. Ron Paul in 2008!

  • 15.
  • At 05:17 PM on 09 Nov 2007,
  • stormrunner wrote:

In defense of Ron Paul the object here is to slow the feudalization of the free world whose fiat monetary systems are quickly through the power of lobby buying government.

When considering party affiliation in the context of nostalgia, oh blame it on the Democrats, no it was the Republicans, consider we live in a one party system, the ”MoneyParty” of the Republicrats.

Was the Housing Bubble a natural progression of “Free Market” exuberance or a purposefully legislated event designed with the sole intention of raping American prosperity?

Reflect on this question carefully when passing judgment on your not so savvy neighbors, as bubblevision blankets the population with stories of moronic greedy individuals that brought this upon themselves. Rejecting any credence be applied to a more nefarious proposition, that of deliberate manipulation of monetary policy in conjunction with gradual legislation implementations that nurtured the environment necessary to incubate the mania. Market manias are driven by speculation, speculation can not occur without financing. Financing was restrained by banking reserve requirements, and then things changed.

On November 12, 1999, President Bill Clinton signed into law the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, which repealed the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933.

Provisions of the Glass-Steagall Act were directed at these abuses:

(1) Banks were investing their own assets in securities with consequent risk to commercial and savings deposits. The concern of Congress to block this evil is clearly stated in the report of the Senate Banking and Currency Committee on an immediate forerunner of the Glass-Steagall Act.
(2) Unsound loans were made in order to shore up the price of securities or the financial position of companies in which a bank had invested its own assets.
(3) A commercial bank's financial interest in the ownership, price, or distribution of securities inevitably tempted bank officials to press their banking customers into investing in securities which the bank itself was under pressure to sell because of its own pecuniary stake in the transaction.

The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, also known as the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Financial Services Modernization Act, Pub. L. No. 106-102, 113 Stat. 1338 (November 12, 1999), is an Act of the United States Congress which repealed the Glass-Steagall Act, opening up competition among banks, securities companies and insurance companies. The Glass-Steagall Act prohibited a bank from offering investment, commercial banking, and insurance services

History of the engineering steps
Just days after the administration (including the Treasury Department) agrees to support the repeal, Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin, the former co-chairman of a major Wall Street investment bank, Goldman Sachs, raises eyebrows by accepting a top job at Citigroup as Weill's chief lieutenant. The previous year, Weill had called Secretary Rubin to give him advance notice of the upcoming merger announcement. When Weill told Rubin he had some important news, the secretary reportedly quipped, "You're buying the government?"

Ex Goldman Sachs employees chair the leadership of nearly every Government level financial institution in the world.

Reckless lending practices were then implemented to blow two housing bubbles across three administrations of "Republicrats" for the purposes of siphoning 4 Trillion from the US economy to advantage the labor arbitrage in Asia. If the public were asked to build a manufacturing infrastructure overseas via taxation the public surely would rebel, but threaten them with being locked out of the American dream of homeownership in an environment of perpetually appreciating prices and you can generate enough gamblers to get the job done.

I would have to imagine that some extremely influential member banks have serious exposure to this off balance sheet dilemma. Until this is resolved and confiscations of real assets will more than "over" compensate, their tools which are the FED and Treasury will do everything possible to keep the liquidity flood gates open, even a special conduit or two. Of course being that the balance of payments between the two economies FIRE (Financials, Insurance, Real Estate) vs Production / Consumption (Real) is 10 to 1, its going to take some serious shuffling to get the worthless 90% into the right hands -ie the unconnected players. If one believes this debacle was engineered, then an exit strategy must have been planned. To discover this would seem tradable. If one believes this was just poor oversight and happenstance,
We certainly do then live in an idiocracy and are doomed. (Remember the safeguards put in place 3 generations ago were dismantled under the pretext of Modernization, accident??)
Now a 100 Billion dollar super fund M-LEC is being constructed to hide the losses of these SuperBanks till such time as they can be absorbed, by inflation, pension funds, and unwitting investors. Ultimate outcome, extreme reduction in the American Standard of Living - Economic Warfare. This repeal allowed banks to lend obscene amounts of money to debtors who can never repay, by allowing the investment houses of these large banks to securitize the loans and sell them in the open markets, thus removing incentive to scrutinize the applicants while freeing their reserves to lend more capital, to additional players whom also could never repay –a classic credit expansion dwarfing the corruption that occurred in the lead up to the Great Depression. In effect a license issued by the government to bypass FED controls on the money (credit) supply endorsed by the FED’s own “member banks”. An engine of obscurity, if you will. Essentially with regard to inflation dynamics credit spends as well as cash and elevates prices of the targeted asset class, driving the mania hence the "Housing Bubble"

When the bulk of the paper debt instruments are distributed to the appropriate parties the liquidity flood gates will be closed and the confiscation will commence.


Every one of these abuses was known and repeated, lending enormous credibility to the warning of Catherine Austin Fitts and her fitting description of a Tape-Worm Economy. Having worked at the administrative levels of HUD it is her contention that these bubbles were economically engineered to skim large sums of capital from the US to build manufacturing abroad to advantage the labor arbitrage. Very enlightening interview, well worth the time.

Cynical obviously, outrageous maybe, impossible highly unlikely.

  • 16.
  • At 05:51 PM on 09 Nov 2007,
  • Marek wrote:

I am fascinated by the clarity of Ron Paul's speaches and admire his courage, the way he takes on the frontrunners. Now, let's say the impossible happens and he wins the presidency. Surely, the president can not on his own dismantle the Dept. of Education, Homeland Security, FEMA, and the CIA. Ron Paul the President will not be able to deliver on any of those promises and that will be the end of him, right?

  • 17.
  • At 07:07 PM on 09 Nov 2007,
  • Tony Welsh wrote:

I don't agree with a lot of his policies, but Ron Paul certainly seems earnest. And honest. Makes me wonder why he is running as a Republican. I am not a libertarian but have been to a few Cato Institute meetings. Seems to me these true libertarians have very little in common with the current powers that be in the Republican party, who have increased the size of government and curtailed civil liberties and who would like to control what we do in our bedrooms.

*IF* Ron Paul is elected, he may not be able to push through any of his ideas, but at least the brakes will be applied to the runaway downhill wagon we're already on. THAT will be enough for me.

  • 19.
  • At 07:33 PM on 09 Nov 2007,
  • Aaron Clausen wrote:

That's all we need, the United States being run by Ayn Rand.

Here's a clue. Being principled is wonderful, but let's just consider the principles themselves.

Libertarians are annoying and fantastically disassociated from reality enough without actually having one achieve power.

  • 20.
  • At 07:51 PM on 09 Nov 2007,
  • Aaron wrote:

I do not think the federal reserve, IRS, CIA, etc. would go easily. However, the presidency is a powerful position. Additionally, it may give some members of congress the opportunity to take stances that under a different administration would be political suicide. More importantly, assuming Ron Paul won the presidency, he would have the power of the people behind him.

It is all very idealist, but as Edmund Burke said, "All that is necessary for the forces of evil to win in the world is for enough good men to do nothing."

  • 21.
  • At 08:40 PM on 09 Nov 2007,
  • James wrote:

Ron Paul is correct to criticise Benanke. Benanke is just saying what Harold Wilson said - "It does not mean, of course, that the pound here in Britain, in your pocket or purse or in your bank, has been devalued."

It was nonsensical in Britain then and it is nonsensical in America now.

  • 22.
  • At 09:24 PM on 09 Nov 2007,
  • Barry Smith wrote:

People like Ron Paul because he reminds them of the Republican Party as it used to be. In an era of political correctness he is plain spoken and sincere.

Before electing a libertarian however, consider this. Ron Paul is very much in the mould of Ronald Reagan (in fact he was one of the first to endorse Reagan). Reagan went to war against the rest of the world and mucked up US foreign relations badly (almost beyond repair in Central America); it took Bush 41 to repair the economy and it cost him the 1992 election. Libertarian policies favour the rich and powerful at the cost of the middle and working class.

I think that the US can do better.

  • 23.
  • At 01:41 AM on 10 Nov 2007,
  • jojo santos wrote:

I am from the Philippines but since what happens in the U.S. reverberates throughout the world, so I take great interest on its election.

When I heard Dr. Ron Paul in debates, I thought he's the most refreshing political voice among the candidates in these times of lies, deceits and diminishing liberties.

What he speaks about may not necessarily win him the presidency because of the entrenched power peddlers in D.C. but by taking courage to make plain what ails America today is in itself a potent push to awaken its people to action. And it's happening!

I will not be surprised if he's carried through by that wave...

  • 24.
  • At 06:22 PM on 11 Nov 2007,
  • Mark wrote:

Wake up Mr. Webb. This kook hasn't got a snowball's chance in hell of becoming President of the United States. He can rant all he wants to. His meatball economic theories are off the wall. American monetary policy has been nothing short of brilliant since Greenspan took over as Chairman of the Fed. Even in these last few years of difficult fiscal policy, the Fed has been "right on the money" all along fine tuning and playing the economy like a fiddle. Dennis Kucinich has a better chance. Even Gary Hart has a better chance and he's not running.

If by some wild miracle Paul got the Republican nomination, the Democratic spin doctors would have a field day making him look like a fugitive from a lunatic asylum. It would be the best opportunity for them since Goldwater, and he was a moderate compared to Paul. He's no more than a colorful footnote in the real process. If he got on the ballot as a Republican, even I'd hold my nose and pull the lever for whomever is running against him.

  • 25.
  • At 11:18 AM on 13 Nov 2007,
  • neformore wrote:

Why don't the BBC highlight the systematic way that Ron Paul is being snubbed by a large element of the right-wing US media?

  • 26.
  • At 07:03 PM on 13 Nov 2007,
  • George wrote:

Ron Paul is honest, God fearing, and loves justice.

For those reasons the Republicans and powers that be block him from media coverage even when he wins debates.

The front runners are 180 degrees opposite to Paul.

  • 27.
  • At 07:36 AM on 17 Nov 2007,
  • Paul W wrote:

I can say in the cowboy country of the pacific north west his support is FAR more than the media in the US reports, people stand on the corner with signs and drivers honk from their cars.

His signs are everywhere, and they are clean an professional looking, not those silly revolution signs you see on TV.

These were Bush crazy people in 2003-2004 etc... They have been had and they know it by the mainstream republicans. A small portion defected to Kerry in 2004 but not enough to make a difference.

Ron Paul is a storm Karl Rove could not even stop, I wonder what he really thinks of this? Not what he'll say in some interview or something.

  • 28.
  • At 01:28 PM on 17 Nov 2007,
  • Kathryn L. Edwards wrote:

I'm an Independent with liberal stances on somethings and conservative on others, at this time I really think America needs Dr. Ron Paul.
I know that I really have a hard time with some of his stands, but I'm tired of what they call the spend and tax (DEMS) and the spend and debt (Repugs) non of them make any sense in the economy today. In fact I would say most politicians are bought and paid for by Big Money or they have it themselves.
We need a big change at this time and if Mr. Paul can give us 4 years then I will go for it. I'm not going to believe that for one second more that I will just throw away my vote, it seems I've been doing that for sometime and especially if they win. I will talk to anyone about
Dr. Ron Paul until my voice gives out if they want to listen. We are in a grave situation at this time and we really need someone to get us out of this Super power business and pushing our ideals on to any country we want.
I hate the lost of our Freedoms the fears that anything I say or write can be used against me without any legal help.
The lies that spit forward from all the candidates.
I want peace, and if Ron Paul can give me that I will take it, maybe I can only take it for 4 years but maybe that will be all it takes.

  • 29.
  • At 05:21 PM on 17 Nov 2007,
  • Michael W. Clapp wrote:

Mr. Webb,
I appreciated your candor about Dr. Paul and his supporters. As a supporter it is clear to me we have to be careful about how we "come off" to others we are trying to introduce Dr. Paul to. Along those lines, I would like to point out to you that there is a big difference between historical libertarian views and the Libertarian movement/party. Please do not associate the two as interchangeable.(as your quick link in the article does) Traditional Republican Party values are libertarian (little "l") and as you have so accurately pointed out "we"(R) have been hijacked and are just correcting the problem.

Can he win? Bill Clinton was virtually unknown before the NH primary. Ron Paul is the only R candidate that "can" win and he will. You will love the USA when this catches on in our congress.

  • 30.
  • At 04:24 PM on 19 Nov 2007,
  • M. D'Avanzo wrote:

"I have written before about the need for those of us with claims to impartiality to treat those the parties regard as fringe candidates seriously; it is not for us to attack or defend, but to report and analyse."

Bravo! Too bad in America our wonderful and responsible media narrows the field down to two candidates on either side (all of whom are only a shade different from each other) from day one.

  • 31.
  • At 10:46 AM on 20 Nov 2007,
  • Luke Fochler wrote:

It doesn't really matter what the Fed is doing as long as Congress refuses to go anywhere near responsible spending levels. I don't know if the gold standard is the answer, but clearly we cannot continue to finance current spending with loans.

As to Ron Paul being the new Reagan - I don't know how you could possibly read his policies as anything other than isolationist.

Lastly - yes, Libertarians are a shrill lot, but they do benefit from a set of internally consistent principles - more than most can claim. We will probably have to agree to disagree but it is far more attractive to me than either the Republican or Democratic brands of populism.

  • 32.
  • At 04:22 AM on 21 Nov 2007,
  • jojo santos wrote:

It is definitely much better to be shrill in voice that we get to the bottom of things than to be shrill in bombs that mankind only reaches the bottom pits.

The candidate who will work for peace deserves consideration. and Ron paul is on top of the list.

  • 33.
  • At 12:21 PM on 22 Nov 2007,
  • gregor aitken wrote:

C'mon BBC, still no profile of Ron Paul.

you will have to acknowledge his running as a serious thing at some point,

He has gone from 1% to 13% of republican voters, Hispolling with the actual voters puts him at nearer 40% approval.

He is no longer a minority candidate

  • 34.
  • At 02:38 AM on 26 Nov 2007,
  • Dave wrote:

I am glad to see something written on the BBC about Ron Paul for the first time in ages.

I am British, and have been watching Ron Paul closely for the past year, from before he announced his intention to enter the presidential race.

I can quite honestly say that Ron Paul is not the star here. The real heroes are the masses of Americans who are actually taking action to get Dr. Paul elected. They feel that doing so will, in turn, save America.

More amazing than this, however, is that Ron Paul simply cannot lose. He may or may not win the Republican Party candidacy, but in either case he will have inspired a masses of ordinary people to once again believe in the philosophy of freedom -- something that set America apart from the rest of the world around one hundred years ago. He cannot lose, because of this fact alone. On top of this, America will surely come across at least one other presidential candidate built upon the blueprint of the good doctor.

I can only dream of a time in Britain when I can vote for an honest politician, who understands what freedom really is, to be our Prime Minister. Ideally he or she would bring all of a our troops home, gradually and carefully dismantle many of our socialist institutions, and give our citizens the chance to take responsibility for themselves for the first time in, um... forever. Just like Ron Paul! Moreover, I dream of a time in Britain when the majority of citizens are taking action to affect positive change. Just like Ron Paul's supporters!

In conclusion, the sooner people understand that politicians won't fix things for us while we sit idly by and watch, the sooner we will achieve peace on Earth.

Good luck Dr. Paul. You'll need it in order to overcome those who depend upon this morally corrupt world system, for they are poisonous snakes. The only known antidote to their vicious bites is pure truth.

  • 35.
  • At 05:48 PM on 26 Nov 2007,
  • Burns Drake wrote:

Can we take a look at history? The Founding Fathers were radical Libertarians. They did not necessarily have the majority behind them, in fact many in the colonies were quite satisfied with the status quo. Tomas Paine printed Common Sense on pamphlets and people spread this in a 'grassroots' fashion.
Now take a look at Dr. Paul and his campaign. His supporters, who are spreading and 'spamming' his message, are working in a similar fashion. This accusation of 'spamming' is really a matter of perspective. Everyone wants their opinion heard, whether it's for Hillary, Obama, Ruddy, Romney, or Dr. Paul--it's one of the things that makes America special, our Freedom of Speech.
Also, the Founding Fathers thought that the Constitution was imperative. I happen to agree, and so does Ron Paul though the way the US has been run as of late tries to disregard the law of the land.
I listen to what you have to say, so listen to what I have to say. And keep it in perspective.

  • 36.
  • At 04:18 PM on 27 Nov 2007,
  • Andrew Cline wrote:

I personally like the man. He's not afraid to express ideas that are clear, coherent, and not soundbites. He references sources, is consistent, and is not afraid to tell the American people that everything is not right. Do I think that he will be able to accomplish all goals and turn America into a libertarian paradise? Of course not, and he himself has said the same. But what he can do is to scale back executive departments, and most importantly use the veto power to reduce the possibility of runaway government spending and bills that are questionable in constitutional terms. Gridlock in politics is a good thing in my opinion, and that alone seems to be reason enough to vote for the man.

With regards to practicality; Ron Paul is a slightly sticky situation. He must rally his enthusiastic and idealistic supporters with his final vision while at the same time reassuring the more pragmatic voters that he won't turn everything off overnight. He himself has said that while he would like the close the IRS and the Fed overnight he recognizes that he cannot do so; a transition period is required. The same is true for the welfare state; he recognizes that people have become dependent. A good way to view how Ron Paul views government in its curret incarnation is to consider how a doctor might view a junkie. The doctor likely would be opposed to the idea that going cold turkey is a good idea, but in the end he wants to junkie to get clean.

As far as his potential success; that depends on the issues that are of concern to the GOP base as well as Ron Paul's success in drawing in independents and possibly Dems in states with open primaries. Optimistically, and a bit unrealistically, I'd say he has a chance. Clinton at this time had lower numbers than Paul did if I'm not mistaken, and Paul has shown that he can raise funds for his campaign. I do think that Paul will at least make a dent in the primaries, enough to make the major parties realize that his message does have appeal to a broad spectrum of the American body politic.

If he is not elected president, or doesn't make it past the primaries, what will his legacy be? Firstly, his losing the primary will show those actual fiscal/small government conservatives and right libertarians that the GOP is no longer the party of small government. Considering the fact that Dems are no better when it comes to such matters, or foreign policy/liberty etc, then where will that leave those folks (and by rough estimates about 20% or so of the American people identify themselves as libertarian leaning)? A third party emerging is possible, but given the nature of the American system of government not likely. The last time a major political party with staying power beyond a protest vote, as with Perot in the 1990s and the Populist Party in the 1890s, was the GOP; and that was in 1854. Given the unlikelihood of a major transformation in the party system and the low chances of a new party either replacing one of the other parties or emerging as third party that gets a decent amount of seats in Congress and the Senate then the options left for libertarians and small government/fiscal conservatives is to either join third parties as a protest vote in order to show the two major parties that there are issues of concern, or to enter one of main parties (most likely the GOP) and work to change the nature of the party from within. Parties have changed from within before, and it's certainly plausible. If Paul can maintain ideological momentum eve past the presidential campaign and provide intellectual and possibly financial support in the future to emerging politicians and political thinkers then perhaps his legacy will be to help create a crop of politicians who generally follow his line of political thinking. His legacy might be akin to that of Goldwater.

Finally, what will be the legacy of his defeat? Unlike some Ron Paul supporters I don't think the world will come to an end. That being said, if his economic predictions come true and if our foreign policy does continue I fear that those of us in his camp will be forced to say 'we told you so'.

  • 37.
  • At 07:03 AM on 02 Dec 2007,
  • Robin Kenneth Dicken wrote:

I have to agree with the opinion that Dr. Paul will not win the GOP nomination-and that's a shame. I have been a democrat for years but anymore they are just republicans of a different color. The more you look the better he appears. His candid (with no hesitation, I might add) answers with no waffling is indeed refreshing. Too bad that with age comes cynicism which somehow negates idealism. I thought that was the point-to aim high. I hope his refreshing ideas and honesty aren't ignored by all the media. That's the main reason I read the BBC all the time. You just can't get the truth from corporate media in the States. Thanx

  • 38.
  • At 07:10 AM on 02 Dec 2007,
  • Steve wrote:

Ron Paul is the only candidate to oppose the formation of the North American Union, which hasn't been mentioned in the mainstream media. If the NAU is formed, we become closer to a one world government. It's not difficult to see why Ron Paul's supporters are doing everything they can to help him get elected.

Ron Paul is against regulation of the internet, the war on Iraq and wants to abolish the Federal Reserve bank and the IRS which continue to keep the US in permanent debt.

Ron Paul to win!

  • 39.
  • At 11:37 PM on 03 Dec 2007,
  • James Rathz wrote:

Washington DC college student here, while I hope Ron Paul gains some clout in this election, I hope his real role is to redefine American politics.

You're correct in stating that he thinks "very big picture", but that is an understatement. While the rest of the candidates tout which brand of aspirin they will use to treat headaches, Ron Paul is the only person telling the patient he actually has a brain tumor.

To me, underneath all the issues of ideology and policy is our election system itself; stacked against candidates like Paul. Maybe we should look across the Atlantic for a few hints on democracy...

  • 40.
  • At 01:30 AM on 04 Dec 2007,
  • Joe wrote:

I had heard of most of the Presidential candidates, and knew a little about each of them but I hadn't heard of Ron Paul till the You-Tube debate the other week. And I have to say I was really impressed by him,and him alone.If I were an American,and I weren't a democrat he would most certainly get my vote. So I hope he does well...but can I ask a question-in the hope of being answered-where does he stand with the Christian Right? And, after Bush,are they still going to be as important in Republican affiars?

  • 41.
  • At 02:19 PM on 04 Dec 2007,
  • gregor aitken wrote:

Would you like me to find a profile for Ron Paul from another site and cut and paste it to you.

you still seem to not hacve him listed as a candidate on your profile of the candidates. If i remember correct you also have a section on the candidates views on the main issues again you do not include any Ron Paul.

Do you not like him, is he too small a politician for you to write about 2 extra pages and spend 20 mins adding this to your site.

We are only talking about a few hours work here. Whats the problem?

Since Ron's slogan is hope for America. Shall we say the opposite is truth here. Everyone agrees that he is the best candidate, yet they also state... We need an evil person to deal with evil entities. When the top is corrupt, everyone will follow. Happiness si knowing God will put down all these bad people, and their business partners, terrorist are the least of our problems. I mean think about it for one hour!

  • 43.
  • At 01:05 AM on 15 Dec 2007,
  • Alexander Moseley wrote:

Ron Paul espouses a philosophy that was born in England in the 17th Century and which migrated to the States with the early colonists- it was and remains decidedly libertarian, a political philosophy that may have a variety of moral foundations (Paul's is Christian) but which tends to assert the primacy of the individual, freedom of religion, choice, speech, property (without which the former would be meaningless), and thereby a minimal government. Radical indeed, the libertarians have tended to express a great mistrust in political power of any colour - power corrupts. The reaction towards those who would undermine power and traditional politics by establishment figures, papers, and institutions (including the Beeb) is often one of dismissal - a patronising dismissal of an annoying child who dares to question establishment hypocrisy and corruption. Yet it is from such a perspective that we should all judge our politicians, who are so keen to feather their own beds with our money while removing our liberties, so that the majority end up working too hard and regulated from every angle into a submissive state to be able to raise any protestation. The establishments have always been cosy for the members (Church, Court, Parliament, Commission, call it what you will) and figures such as Paul, who dare to question the very validity of politics need to be championed. Unfortunately, they are few - but it is the few who can turn our thinking and give us hope that the ideals of freedom can be recalled. (Q. to critics - do they ever teach about freedom or its history in our state funded schools? Rhetorically implied, of course). Best wishes to the Paul campaign and perhaps groovy green socialist Cameron may learn a few principles from him - like, get the state off our backs for real: bring our soldiers back from their imperial duties, abolish income tax, most of the ministeries, get out of the EU superstate, and remove all of the interfering regulative legislation that has enfettered this nation. Give peace a chance? Then give freedom a chance.

  • 44.
  • At 07:01 AM on 17 Dec 2007,
  • Phil wrote:

Ron Paul is the only hope for America, and dare i say it possibly the world. I'm a UK citizen and what happens in America affects us all. There are to many cover up and this man will set the record straight. I just hope is survives long enough to get there. He already being called by the present administration a terrorist, some even claim he doesnt excist.

I hope of all our sakes this is not another Kennedy situation.

  • 45.
  • At 05:07 PM on 17 Dec 2007,
  • simony wrote:

There's no doubt in my mind that Ron Paul would be an amazing president. He stands head and shoulders above the competition.

Unfortunately mainstream america cannot see him, mainly because the camera's just don't point in his direction. Why? Because the people who own the camera's want and will most probably succeed in putting another Bush style stooge in the office be it Clinton, Obama or Giuliani.

What confuses and worries me though is that the BBC seems to be equally unequal in it's reporting of the race as well as celebrity orientated in it's approach to characters like Clinton.

As an organisation paid for by non american citizens why does the BBC reinforce the distorted message of american corporate news and media?

Come on Justin? go and tell those lemmings in the newsroom to put ALL the candidates on their trendy graphs and charts!

  • 46.
  • At 11:03 PM on 17 Dec 2007,
  • Marilyn Felty wrote:

Ron Paul may be refreshing, he may be honest, he may be charismatic. But he is not in any way shape or form a hero. His feet are made of the same clay as anyone else's. He's getting "kid glove" treatment right now because he's a novelty act. Were he to become a more viable candidate (rather than an intriguing fringe candidate) and put under the same microscope as the rest of the front runners, his appeal would start to develop serious holes.
Libertarians often think they are the only ones who can "save" America--primarily by pulling the plug on many vital social programs, both domestic and international and taking us back to a "frontier justice" mentality. Had Libertarians really run the country, we'd have had no interstates and no rural electrification. If a program can't pay for itself or better still, turn a profit, then it has no value--that's the reality of the libertarian philosophy.
Justin, next time you write about Ron Paul, please take off those rose-colored specs. They're seriously distorting your vision. Just because Ron Paul opposed the Iraq war doesn't make him right on every other issue.

  • 47.
  • At 04:30 PM on 18 Dec 2007,
  • Martin wrote:

Ron Paul is the last chance for the US to avoid becoming bankrupt.

I also note a complete lack of coverage on the BBC of him, dispite the fact that he just broke the all time fund raising record. There is an unspoken policy of ignoring Ron Paul by the media in the US and Europe.

There seem to be a lot of people here posting comments attacking his supporters. Of the ones that are real, most are probably not, have you ever thought that this is just the media attacking Ron Paul by proxy? He has passionate supporters from all walks of life. The media only focuses on a tiny fraction of them.

  • 48.
  • At 08:29 PM on 18 Dec 2007,
  • Brett wrote:

Like the major party candidates and their supporters - and especially the media - aren't "shrill" in attacking non-conformist, anti-establishment candidates? Take a look at what happened to Ralph Nader the last couple of times around. Nader had more integrity in his little finger than all the major party candidates combined - and infinitly better policies. He was pilloried without let up, especially by the Dem's for exposing their hypocrisy. Now Paul is getting the same treatment from the Republicans. Both parties brook no dissent and won't tolerate anyone "crashing the party".So any outsider by definition is "shrill"or "unrealistic" or "a spoiler" or "an egotist", etc. Just epithets designed to insure ideolical conformity. So maybe it's not for you to say - or maybe you just don't want to say - but anyhow, it is for you to say why you don't check in with America's Green Party?

  • 49.
  • At 11:02 AM on 26 Dec 2007,
  • Dr RuslanJohan wrote:

Dear All,
I am a Malaysian citizen with interest in American politic
Dr Ron Paul is the most well informed about the state of American economy amongst all Presidential candidates.He understood the economy of Fiat Money that had failed in the past in many countries and civilization , and America is not an exception.

His understanding and solution he offered to the impending major devaluation of USD (which going to affect to whole world mind you)is certainly honest to the core bitter Medicine that American public has to swallow.

He impressed me alot with his well informed arguement and stickler to the non interventionist principal of American Founding Father's constitution.

His look somehow reminded me of Mr Norman Rockwell by his grandfatherly mannerism ,probably subconciously it reminded American of constitutionally beautiful pictures drawn by Mr Rockwell....the good happy days when American is loved by all.

God Bless you Mr Paul....please take good care of this Good Christian.

  • 50.
  • At 01:24 AM on 27 Dec 2007,
  • Dave wrote:

Marilyn Felty, you are pretending to know what would or would not have happened based on different circumstances. You know as well as I do that this is folly.

There is still the chance that you may be right, but this is inconsequential enough for it to be ruled out of a serious statement.

Libertarianism cannot save America, or the world, or anywhere. No ideology can. Not communism, not capitalism. The world is has had an abundance of different political philosophies for hundreds of years, and we still haven't got it. What is it that we haven't got, you ask? That we're only making things worse for ourselves every time we come up with a new plan to fix things.

  • 51.
  • At 09:09 PM on 27 Dec 2007,
  • Ed wrote:

I am an American, but I have noticed that Brits like Sen. Paul more than Americans do (what does that tell you?). Currently Mr. Paul is in last place in nationwide polling for the 2008 primaries. He is also currently in last place in Iowa, South Carolina, and New Hampshire. According to a February 2007 poll Sen. Paul has the lowest name recognition of any of the presidential candidates (Republican and Democrat. I just proved myself right; you guys do like Sen. Paul more than we do. I personally am supporting Mitt Romney. Ron Paul is a close to Pontius Pilate as one can get. When asked what he would do concerning abortion he responded that he would let the states decide what to do. This sounds like Pilate saying that he didn't want Jesus to be crucified but said he would let the people decide (we all know what happened next).

  • 52.
  • At 06:20 AM on 29 Dec 2007,
  • Cindy wrote:

Dr. Paul is clearly opposed to partial birth abortion. However, he is correct in that should be an issue for each state to decide. The Federal government has business having its sticky fingers in this issue.
I do believe this is the hope that America has been waiting for. And it is certainly refreshing and inspiring to finally have a candidate who speaks his mind and has the backbone to stand up and defend the Constitution. We, as Americans have stood by far too long and have allowed the Washington elite to virtually destroy that precious document. Dr. Paul is a shining beacon of hope that we can turn this thing around and save our liberty before it is too late.
I am thrilled to see the younger voters taking an active interest in this campaign. How great that they are vocal and excited.
Don't underestimate this man. He has more than a fair shot of winning the election. Then we all become winners instead the bottom line on some Corporate fat cat's spread sheet.

  • 53.
  • At 06:32 PM on 31 Dec 2007,
  • Phil wrote:

Ron Paul is the only way for the USA, and probably the rest of the world.

Pity most of the media blocks him out because of pressure from the bush administration.

Guess Ron Paul just keeps telling the truth.

  • 54.
  • At 10:42 PM on 31 Dec 2007,
  • Evangeline Wollmar wrote:

I pray that our polls in the USA are not corrupt ike they were when Bush was elected. I am from the USA and I am embarrased at what Bush has done. Ron Paul needs to win to restore our integrity and credibility.

  • 55.
  • At 01:35 AM on 01 Jan 2008,
  • Brian wrote:

I took the time today to look over each canidate and their possitions on what matter to the people that live here leagly, SS, Health care boarders and the like and Dr Paul's position is the only one that even comes close to making any sense for America. The others are just pandering to money groups and no matter which side they are on it is all the same smoke and mirrors I hope we wake up this time as I feel there are not going to be too many next times if we don't

  • 56.
  • At 08:15 PM on 01 Jan 2008,
  • Rachel wrote:

Are you people serious?

Do you have any idea what Dr Paul's policies actually are, or what they would do? From his own website:

* 'Physically secure' America's borders and end the practice of citizenship by birth in the US

* Dismantle the Fed and return the US to the gold standard

* Not require any immunisations--Dr Paul opposed a bill that would require Americans to be vaccinated against smallpox (He wants us to have the freedom to choose smallpox! How nice!)

* Save the environment by protecting property rights--getting people to sue polluters.

* Withdraw the US from the WTO, UN and all free trade agreements

* Dismantle the Department of Education, leaving education to the states (anyone with first hand experience of the vast disparities in American education as it is should be horrified by this)

* Overturn Roe v Wade (which to be fair he could not do without the Supreme Court), allowing states to decide whether to allow abortion. Given that some states barely tolerate the existence of Planned Parenthood, women too poor to travel to other states would be forced to bear children against their will

* Read between the lines and tell me this isn't a coded appeal to racists: 'Through its taxes, restrictive regulations, corporate subsidies, racial set-asides, and WELFARE PROGRAMS (caps mine), government plays far too large a role in determining who succeeds and who fails...By encouraging Americans to adopt a group mentality, the advocates of so-called "diversity" actually perpetuate racism.'

* Opposes any form of gun control, voting against a bill to allow government-appointed psychiatrists to deny veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder from purchasing guns (for records of gun crime by veterans with PTSD: and will oppose any attempt to re-instate the Assault Weapons Ban

Yes, he opposed the Iraq war and the Patriot Act, and he seems like a man with a lot of integrity. But the policies in which he clearly believes so passionately are BAD (nay, CRAZY) POLICIES.

  • 57.
  • At 09:24 PM on 01 Jan 2008,
  • Koshin wrote:

Whats deeply troubling about the furore surrounding Ron Paul is that there are reasonable people out there who support most if not all of his propsals and still feel if they were to vote for him it would be a wasted vote.. how many times have we heard he's unelectable. This pretty much amounts to someone saying I can solve all your problems and us saying no we dont want that cause we feel its the impossible dream. Soon enough when we have these inevitable catastrophes under the current system with regards to our enviornmental concerns as well as the economic problems i.e( When the huddled masses are queing for bread) thats when you'll realise perhaps Ron Pauls ideas were'nt so far fetched. Until than if you feel as if your going waste your vote voting for him than so be it just dont use it to prop up another Lackey candidate who jus so happens to be everyone one of them apart from Kuninich.

  • 58.
  • At 11:52 AM on 09 Jan 2008,
  • jjb1974 wrote:

America's Constitution has been weakened, and she is clearly very sick. So entrenched are the problems that a paradigm shift is now needed.

The cancers in the US and its economic and political systems are the work of ages, borne of evil and sustained by years of credit-fuelled gluttony and expert use of the media to misdirect the public away from the sickness of their own institutions, and the continued administration of carcinogens by the internationalists and their stooges. Who actually owns the Federal Reserve and how did it come about? I challenge all to embark on that adventure for yourselves...

Doctor Paul is a Constitutionalist above all his libertarian instincts. His stated priority is to restore America's Constitution. What are the other CFR acolytes going to do for it? Read the Pat-riot Act! Dissent is now long before some "Liberty And Security Act" removes both and leaves a dictatorship to fight false-flag foes.

Paul vs Kucinich please...

  • 59.
  • At 09:54 PM on 10 Jan 2008,
  • Mel Cameron wrote:

Some very serious evidence of vote count irregularities have arisen from New Hampshire. The first irregularity surfaced in the township of Sutton where Paul was reported as 0 per cent. However members of a local family all voted for Paul. His actually tally was 31 which is a significant percentage in the small township vote. The chief clerk said it was 'human error'. Then it is discovered Paul's hand-count booth results are way above the overall 8 per cent he was given. Will the BBC be investigating?

  • 60.
  • At 10:06 AM on 12 Jan 2008,
  • Argos wrote:

I think Ron Paul is a very interesting candidate worthy of some mentioning by the BBC.

It begs the question why there is little to no information about him or Dennis Kucinich on the section of the BBC website dedicated to the American elections.

That is a question posted directly to Justin Webb just as clarification for my self. As it seems to be a continuing theme on most mainstream media sites.

I wasn't really expecting the BBC to be one of them as well but to my disappointment it seems that this blog story is the only information i can find on the man on the whole BBC website pretty much!

  • 61.
  • At 05:20 PM on 13 Jan 2008,
  • Nick Gotts wrote:

Ron Paul is clearly (a) a man of integrity who is right about the Iraq war and the Patriot Act, and (b) an inflexible ideologue who thinks the USA can cut itself off from the world and return to a mythical version of the 18th century. The clearest example of the latter is in relation to anthropogenic climate change. To halt this, international agreements and stringent legal regulation are vital. Suing polluters might conceivably work for local pollutants (although it would not do so in practice, as major polluters tend to be large corporations with very deep pockets), but carbon dioxide, methane and other greenhouse gases diffuse around the world wherever they are emitted. Here's a quote from Paul, concerning climate change and what he'd do about it, from an interview he gave Amanda Griscom Little:
"I think some of it is related to human activities, but I don't think there's a conclusion yet. There's a lot of evidence on both sides of that argument."
This is simply false; the evidence for a predominant human influence in recent climate change is overwhelming, and the vast majority of relevant scientific experts consider that urgent action is necessary to prevent disastrous changes during the 21st century. Without binding international agreements setting specific targets for all major polluting countries, those which do not control greenhouse gas emissions will have an economic advantage. Such specific targets cannot be achieved without strong government action. Paul's inflexible ideology forces him into a distorted view of the balance of scientific evidence, and into diversionary tactics when the issue is raised. He is bright and honest enough not to take the line that human-caused climate change is just a hoax dreamed up by a conspiracy of some combination of scientists, corporations, governments, environmentalists, socialists, international bankers, rootless cosmopolitans, the UN, the Bilderberg Group, the Illuminati, and shape-changing lizards from another solar system - but I fully expect replies to this post, without, of course, a shred of supporting evidence, along those lines.

  • 62.
  • At 12:29 AM on 14 Jan 2008,
  • Rebecca wrote:

Yes Rachel, an understanding of those principles is in fact what draws people to Ron Paul, based in the belief that the way the country is being run right now is what's actually BAD (nay, crazy)!

Also, a lack of belief in the welfare system is not akin to racism - just as critique of Israel's foreign policy behaviour does not equate to anti-semitism, another popular fallacy among people looking to discredit Paul's ideas.

At 08:15 PM on 01 Jan 2008, Rachel wrote:

Yes, he opposed the Iraq war and the Patriot Act, and he seems like a man with a lot of integrity. But the policies in which he clearly believes so passionately are BAD (nay, CRAZY) POLICIES.

  • 63.
  • At 08:40 PM on 14 Jan 2008,
  • Mel Cameron wrote:

Ron Paul is an inspiration to Australians who have heard of him as much as Britons, Canadians, French, Germans and numerous other people worldwide who yearn for freedom. They cry for liberty in the face of the corporate-state fascism being pushed across western nations, fueled by the 'global war on terror'. Ron Paul stands against a totalitarian system of 'global governance' enforced by ubiquitous black-uniformed swat teams and high-tech surveillance systems. McCain, Huckabee, Guiliani, Romney, Clinton, Obama and Edwards are empty shells, mere frontmen for global corporate interests.

  • 64.
  • At 10:29 PM on 14 Jan 2008,
  • paul wrote:

Thank you for the article.

To the comment that says anyone wanting to abolish the IRS and most departments in government will never win. I would argue because people have been mislead on what government should look like. The constitution is the law government should follow. Of course the people in office don't like to hear that the oath they took actually meant something. I support Dr. Paul even if everyone in the world thinks his ideas are to true.

  • 65.
  • At 04:28 PM on 17 Jan 2008,
  • Brendan wrote:

Whilst I am not actively following the US elections I have visited the BBC website a couple of times for general information.
I have been suprised by the lack of fair play given by the BBC when presenting information on the candidates.
Why is there so little information on the Republican candidate Ron Paul.?
Ron Paul beat Rudi Giulani and Fred Thompsom in the Michigan primary:

Ron Paul 52000 votes 6.3% approx
Rudi Guilani 24000 votes 2.8% approx
Fred Thompson 31000 votes 3.7% approx

Whilst all of the other candidates are given space on the main election
page, Ron Paul is not.
He is only to be found after frustratingly clicking on link after link.
Is this because he promotes a different message to the main establishment candidates.?
Even so, it should be the BBCs job to promote a fair and balanced representation of what is happening.
Having said that, the UK government does not want to upset our friends overseas and it would seem that the BBC is just the tool to ensure that this does not happen by misinforming the public about the facts.
Mark Thompson the BBC Director General( is the BBC just the propagander arm of the miltary machine, hence the title.) on the 20th September 2007 wrote a piece about trust in the media.
That trust has been broken and I now seek my news from more reliable and unbiased sources.

  • 67.
  • At 03:11 AM on 18 Jan 2008,
  • David Florida wrote:

I think it is important to realize that Ron Paul has argued that interest rates were kept artificially low. Too darn right they were. This was how the USA became flooded with money for cheap credit. It also meant the Bush administration could finance the war by borrowing cheaply. Yes, folks kind of miss that part.
The sufferers when interest rates started to rise were those already near the bottom of the ladder, the elderly, the low paid, the sick and infirm. Families now lose homes and live in tents, a truly appalling record for the US. They need Paul !

  • 68.
  • At 02:23 PM on 19 Jan 2008,
  • Ben wrote:


however, i do wonder why the BBC won't touch him with a barge pole.


  • 69.
  • At 02:03 AM on 20 Jan 2008,
  • Kadayi wrote:

Ron Paul just polled second on the Nevada vote, but still the BBC doesn't provide him with a candidate profile, or list him in any of their polls. I'd expect this sort of bias from Fox News, but the BBC...

  • 70.
  • At 02:38 AM on 20 Jan 2008,
  • Chris wrote:

Thanks for this coverage of Ron Paul. Makes a change!

  • 71.
  • At 01:30 PM on 20 Jan 2008,
  • Christian wrote:

This is to the fool (I did not call him an idiot, though I would gladly call him many other things too) that posted #3.

In reply to:

"Having said that, should I give my vote to him, or use it to back 'the least evil' of the electable candidates, and in doing so making my vote count?"

Make your vote count? For whom exactly should your vote be counting sir? For the candidate you voted for? Or for you!?

For I can assure you that your vote can and will ever only count for you when you vote for what you believe in.

Your vote does not 'count' when you per chance select the winner. This is not a horse race! It counts when it represents your principles, and is worthless and fraudulent when it does not.

There are times when I believe the uneducated should not be aloud to vote. Though to be fair, even fools should be allowed to elect fools.

Thank God this is a republic.

  • 72.
  • At 02:49 PM on 20 Jan 2008,
  • Roxie Helder wrote:

The reason why RON PAUL is not a choice under "candidates" on your main political page is that someone made the decision to NOT put him there. The question to be answered is who really runs BBC ?

  • 73.
  • At 07:55 PM on 21 Jan 2008,
  • B Braithwaite wrote:

No IRS, Fed, worldwide military? So you think he's unrealistic? Not really he's looking at all the cards dealt over the cards that were in the original stack. So you think this makes him an unsound presidential candidate? Think again, in depth. If we don't, America may as well turn back the clock to a feudal monarch.

No, I doubt Ron Paul will wave any quick fixing wand for the mess we're in but he's pointing a finger into the direction of restoration, in a direction that was once pointed out before, during one of the most important moments in history that we seem to consider a fairy-tale today. He's a leader, a catalyst and shouldn't be misconstrued with any notion that a new president and his team will be all it takes to give us the fix we want in four years. What we should want is his leadership and redirection. It is for us to provide the leverage. He conducts and we must play the tune, millions of us to the words of a promise we must keep for ourselves rather than entrust to a few who prefer that their own interests take precedence.

So why should he be elected? Because it sends a loud and clear demand or even warning to rising fascist psyche, a malignant threat customized for America's blind blind eyes and ignorance. It's for us to make the change and heal what is obviously becoming a sick travesty of deceit, corruption, greed and untrustworthiness amongst business and political moguls.

Make it clear to any government. They represent us, not them. They serve us, not control us for them.

In how we choose, we are our own best friend or own worst enemy.

  • 74.
  • At 08:05 PM on 21 Jan 2008,
  • Bob wrote:

Given that Ron Paul-related articles generally draw the most comments, you would think there'd be more of them.

  • 75.
  • At 07:40 PM on 23 Jan 2008,
  • Frederick wrote:

Justin - your Analysis of Ron Paul's argument in the leader seems extrememly superfical as many of the more lucid commentators on this page have pointed out - Bernanke response to RP is indeed "The pound in your pocket" argument, which is a fallacy, unless you make your own clothes as W. Gary Johnson, New York, NY has pointed out. (LOL)

There is a huge appetite for real debate, not superficial clap-trap of the type presented in the first four paragraphs of this page. RP is the only person engaging in this debate. That's why he's popular.

Does this sound too shrill to you?

  • 76.
  • At 11:56 PM on 24 Jan 2008,
  • alex wrote:

dudes Ron Paul rocks. Being an ex-pat in Britain for over a decade I have noticed the BBC slowly succumbing to political agendas - either that or they're growing ignorant. I guess to cover Ron Paul's political and social campaigns would require someone who actually understands them.

though i am glad to see other people are out there who can see what America really needs.


  • 77.
  • At 01:08 AM on 25 Jan 2008,
  • Kadayi wrote:

Well Rons' finally got a candidate profile, perhaps next up he'll get on the polls. I wonder if Kucinich will get any coverage as he's withdrawn now?

  • 78.
  • At 12:37 AM on 27 Jan 2008,
  • Lj wrote:


Can you explain why, despite winning 2nd place in 2 primaries, Ron Paul is not mentioned in your main coverage of the US election? Also, he is not included in the election polltracker. I see even Fred Thompson's results are in the polltracker even though he has quit the race.

As there are only 5 Republican candidates left, surely this can't be a case of only including the "front runners". Even so, is the process of election not about hearing all points of view then making an informed descision? In your article entitled "Giving the US minnows their moment" you tout Guiliani as a main candidate and he has been eclipsed by Ron Paul.

Please, restore my faith in the unbiased reporting of the BBC.

LJ, Scotland

  • 79.
  • At 04:29 AM on 27 Jan 2008,
  • Jeff wrote:

When I see these comments from supposed Americans... I wonder how an American citizen can say " What is the point of having upstanding ideals ?" as many of the posts about Ron Paul indicate.

America is drowning in devalued dollars, most can't afford healthcare, except illegals who cruise thru the emergency rooms never to be seen or pay their bill.

Our income tax is financing a now ridiculous war,congressional pay raises, while people are losing their homes & starting to live in depression style "tent cities" you will never hardly read about.

I think the spamming is from interests other then American patriot strength. Sad really that enthusiasm for Ron Paul or any "idealist" is mocked.

  • 80.
  • At 04:57 AM on 27 Jan 2008,
  • Eric Smith wrote:

Bernanke crushed Mr Paul by saying that if Americans were suffering the effects of a falling dollar they would see prices rising and they are not.

He's right because it is Chinese workers who are paying for American profligacy, not Americans. The Yuan is tied to the dollar, American prices don't increase and as the dollar falls against other currencies, the value of the debt owed to China decreases in real value.

The Chinese government gets rapid expansion, the Chinese rich make a fortune and only the poor lose.

Why didn't Mr Paul say that ?

Ron Paul is awesome! You only have to see him talk, only hear his message, and you'd know how refreshing he is.

A brilliant person, he follows Austrian school of economics closely, and believes in the philosophy of Robert Taft, Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan.

He has never flip-flopped on his position, and has been very consistent with his voting as a member of house of representatives.

I was very disappointed when BBC website hardly, if ever, mentions Dr. Ron Paul, the same thing wit your news channel. You have to be different than Fox News, BBC has to be better than just parroting what American corrupt media says.

I am certain these elections will usher a new era, a new beginning in USA. Surely, there would be short-term pain, just like when you get a vaccine shot, but it would produce long term stability in the US and world economy.

  • 82.
  • At 11:14 AM on 05 Mar 2008,
  • Kipper wrote:

I am an American reporter and Ron Paul supporter. I came to this post to get an idea of what people outside of America were saying about Dr. Paul and even where or not I could find anything on him at all. The reason for that is in America it is extremely hard to find anything in the news regarding Congressman Paul as he has been mysteriously black listed even when he makes major advances.
It is very sad that today in American society many people don't even know who he is, let alone that he is running for President.
It was very refreshing to me to read these posts, whether they were for or against the good Doctor.
It is true that we supporters feel that if we can't find someone in the government that is there for the people and will live by our Constitution very soon, we may never get another chance. The Constitution in America, that we are slowly loosing one piece at a time is what gives us the freedom and the right to be heard. If we loose it we have nothing.
Ron Paul is a great leader that is bringing hope to Americans. Whether he wins or looses, his voice and his message is being heard and it will continue to grow.
Any outside help would be appreciated.
Thank You BBC for the space in which to share.

  • 83.
  • At 12:54 PM on 05 Mar 2008,
  • Kipper wrote:

I am an American reporter and Ron Paul supporter. I came to this post to get an idea of what people outside of America were saying about Dr. Paul and even where or not I could find anything on him at all. The reason for that is in America it is extremely hard to find anything in the news regarding Congressman Paul as he has been mysteriously black listed even when he makes major advances.
It is very sad that today in American society many people don't even know who he is, let alone that he is running for President.
It was very refreshing to me to read these posts, whether they were for or against the good Doctor.
It is true that we supporters feel that if we can't find someone in the government that is there for the people and will live by our Constitution very soon, we may never get another chance. The Constitution in America, that we are slowly loosing one piece at a time is what gives us the freedom and the right to be heard. If we loose it we have nothing.
Ron Paul is a great leader that is bringing hope to Americans. Whether he wins or looses, his voice and his message is being heard and it will continue to grow.
Any outside help would be appreciated.
Thank You BBC for the space in which to share.

  • 84.
  • At 03:32 AM on 06 Mar 2008,
  • Dave wrote:

I am getting to your blog late, but thank you Mr. Webb for writing about Congressman Dr. Ron Paul, whom I plan to vote for in my state's primary election in May.

There have been some thoughtful comments here and some that need clarification. I appreciate commetns from Jon (#6) and Dave (#34), who are British for their comments on Paul.

A few clarifications, while Dr. Paul ran as a Libertarian candidate once, he is really a constitutionalist Republican (and that is differnt that the Irish or French variety and Libertarians in America tend to follow the philosophy of Ayn Rand). He is a very principled man, who follows the principles of the Founding Fathers, so stated in the constitution and influenced by the Federalist Papers.

Concerning the war, he is following the old Republican, Whig and Federalist position that you do not go seeking wars in other nations. George Washington warned about this at his farewell and after our Revolution sought peace with Britain, not war, as was desired by Jefferson's Democratic-Republicans. Later, John Quincy Adams national policy about avoiding foreign wars. This was the policy of the Republicans up to WWII, when influneces pushed toward involvement that became necessary in Europe.

Paul's economic policy is based not upon some reactionary mindedness, but a principled policy that was held by many in the US up to the time of Woodrow Wilson, when we were pushed in a more internationalist/interventionist and the Federal Reserve started in its power. Eventually, by the 70s money was devalued and taken off of Gold value and is now arbitrary. We inheirited the gold standard from the UK, which had previously been in silver.

There is simply too much to discuss here, but it is Paul who is crying - "Back to the Sources".

As a 40-something Anglo-American, who is an Evangelical Christian and a lifelong Republican, I agree with Paul that our system is out of control and that the parties are so far from what they were and the issues before us demand clear thinking and not following contentless policies or cult figures and more wars that are not constitutionally started or sound and the politics of mere peer pressure.

For further thoughts, I point you to Paul's books, "A Foreign Policy of Freedom" and the forthcoming "The Revolution: A Manifesto".

As a world leader, if we do not respect the principles of national soverignty than neither will others.

If we do not reform, the world will fall back into darkness and the bullying cudgels of tyrants, which it already has a problem with.

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