Ron Paul’s Statement of Faith September 7, 2011

Ron Paul’s Statement of Faith

I know most of you have no intention of voting Republican in the next presidential election, but if you had to pick *someone*, who would it be?

Jon Huntsman? Sure, he accepts evolution and climate change, but that ought to be a given for any educated person, right? He doesn’t hide his Mormonism, though, and that could be his downfall. After all, if he believes the Joseph Smith story, what else will he fall for?

Herman Cain? He’s awful on the social issues and that’s just the start of all of his problems…

Ron Paul! He seems like the sanest candidate so far. He’s decent on civil liberties and supports legalization of marijuana use, prostitution, and same-sex marriage — all of which seem to set him apart from the crowd. Sure, he also wants to get rid of FEMA and anything that tampers with a *completely* free market, but we can discuss those things later.

Of all the beliefs he holds, one has gotten very little press: His faith. There’s a very strong Statement of Faith on his website and it might make you think twice about giving him your support:

I have accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Savior, and I endeavor every day to follow Him in all I do and in every position I advocate.

It is God Who gave us life. As He is free, so are those He created in His image. Our rights to life and liberty are inalienable.

I am running to Restore America Now, and by that I mean that it’s time to protect and promote the basic God-given rights inherent in the promise of America.

We must stand for life — not allow millions of innocent children to continue to be slaughtered with the government’s approval.

This guy is a lot more religious than I imagined.

He says he’s not going to use his faith for political gain, but he’s already letting it guide him to adopt an anti-abortion platform. Hardly as progressive a candidate as the media makes him out to be.

I know there’s no religious test for public office, but if candidates make their faith known (and Paul does by putting it on his own site), we have a right to question them about it and factor it into our judgment. By the substance on this page, Ron Paul is as kooky as the other candidates when it comes to religion.

By the way, I’m not suggesting that an atheist would automatically earn my vote. I would be ok with a religious candidate who kept faith a private matter. It would be nice, though, to have a candidate for higher office from any party who believed in rationality and evidence instead of the Bible.

It may be acceptable to believe in the Invisible Hand, but we have to question candidates’ ability to think clearly when they believe in an Invisible Man.

(Thanks to Joe for the link)

"The way republican politics are going these days, that means the winner is worse than ..."

It’s Moving Day for the Friendly ..."
"It would have been more convincing if he used then rather than than."

It’s Moving Day for the Friendly ..."

Browse Our Archives

What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Great post. I love that you highlighted these candidates’ more admirable positions, and then the more questionable ones. Have you seen The Amazing Atheist’s videos on Ron Paul? They’re quite entertaining.

  • CS42

    I’d like to suggest looking more into Ron Paul’s policy ideas before calling him the “sanest” candidate.  He and his followers are good at projecting an aura of pragmatism,  but a closer look at his policies (the gold standard, religion, women’s issues, race, gay marriage) he’s as off-the-wall as the rest of them.

    Does the cult surrounding *him* count as a religion?

  • Daniel H.

    “He says he’s not going to use his faith for political gain, but he’s
    already letting it guide him to adopt an anti-abortion platform.”

    I see this kind of rhetoric sometimes, and laugh. Is this really the biggest threat atheists and liberals can find in conservative candidates? I mean, what, they might outlaw the killing of babies? Who would want to outlaw such a thing? The horror!

    Warning everyone, the apocalypse is nigh at hand: If you elect Ron Paul, YOU MIGHT NO LONGER BE ABLE TO HAVE YOUR BABY’S BRAIN SUCKED OUT!

  • Heidi

    Ron Paul thinks taxes are theft.  That is not sane, IMO.

  • GuestZero

    I don’t think he’s “pro” same-sex marriage, what he does say is that these issues shouldn’t be decided on the federal level, they should be decided on the state level. So if California decided to ban gay marriage than the Federal government has no right to overturn that decision.  He’s also anti-immigration, anti-labor, advocates the elimination of democratic controls on businesses. He somehow equates unions to monopolies yet not corporations. Ron Paul represents the Tea Partiers; those who believe in corporate power or free-enterprise dogmas i.e. no regulations, no taxes, no social safety nets, etc…He is extremely far right-wing. Don’t let his rhetoric of “liberty” and “freedom” fool you. His foreign policy positions are admirable but his economic and social policies are radical (in a bad way).  I’d rather vote RuPaul than Ron Paul   

  • Drew Bentley

    Don’t worry about Ron Paul, the problem with Ron Paul is, he’s Ron Paul. He’s never going to get the GOP nomination and if he runs as a 3rd party candidate, he’s only going to likely hurt the GOP candidate.

  • skm9

    Cs42 just said what I was going to say, so I’ll only add that in 2000 Ron Paul introduced a bill with the cosponsorship of Congresswoman Carolyn Kilpatrick (D-MI) to bar the use of federal funds to seize houses of worship. 

    He tried to exempt churches from eminent domain.

     This amendment passed the US House of Representatives on a voice vote. However, the housing bill it was attached to failed in the Senate.

    At least he’s incompetent.

  • Sarah

    Google “Ron Paul” “Christmas in secular America” or the “war on religion”. Then, look at the fact that one of his major issues is the gold standard. He wants to limit the Federal Reserve massively, though he has said he would not necessarily get rid of it. He wants to not have the government involved in disaster relief. He would eliminate the Department of Education. He would not raise taxes (which, while I am not certain if he has said it explicitly, would mean not having corporations pay more). He wants to end affirmative action. While I realize many people on this forum may be in sympathy with or all of those things, I find him a scary politician.

  • GuestNye

    In 2004, he spoke in support of the Defense of Marriage Act, passed in 1996. This act allows a state to decline to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states or countries, although a state will usually recognize legal marriages performed outside of its own jurisdiction. The Defense of Marriage Act also prohibits the U.S. government from recognizing same-sex marriages, even if a state recognizes the marriage. Paul co-sponsored the Marriage Protection Act, which would have barred federal judges from hearing cases pertaining to the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act

  • GuestNye

    ^^^From wikipedia

  • I’ve become quite fond of Gary Johnson.

  • I’m pro Ron Paul and an atheist. I see nothing wrong with limiting the government and putting more focus on individual liberties. I am also 99% sure that Ron Paul will not let his religion influence what he does in the white house, apart from the abortion thing which still isn’t bad because all he wants is the states to decide for THEMSELVES whether or not abortion should be legal. You can’t have everything you want in a politician, but Ron Paul sure is close.

  • Gary Johnson.

    I don’t think he really expects to get anywhere this election and is
    just positioning himself to take the Ron Paul people next time.  But he’s a Republican I can vote for.

    It’s too bad the media decided to exclude him from the debates.  It’s enough to make you think that they might be determined to give the spotlight only to the nuttiest republicans so that a Democrats will look responsible.

  • Sarah

    Or, that they might think that fetuses=babies. I worry about that sometimes. 

  • Pam Ellis

    …says the dude who will never have to make the choice or look for illegal and less safe means when the state they live in basically outlaws it and there are no funds to travel to another state.

  • Sarah

    He wants to end eminent domain in general, though, not specifically from churches. Far be it from me to defend him, but he at least in theory wants it to apply beyond churches 🙂

  • Miko

    As far as I’m concerned, no one who opposes legal abortions can be considered “good on civil liberties.”

    Also, Ron Paul really isn’t a free marketer.  He’s better than most of the Republicans, but they’re absolutely dreadful on that issue, so that isn’t saying much.


    Ron Paul thinks taxes are theft.  That is not sane, IMO.

    Why not?  According to my dictionary, “theft” means “the taking of property without the consent of its owner” and “taxes” are “money taken by the government for public purposes.”  From this, basic logic dictates that collecting taxes is a specific form of theft.  You may argue that it’s appropriate for the government to steal money through taxation (since they’re using it for “public purposes” or whatever), but the fact that you consider it legitimate in that instance doesn’t change the fact that the act of taxation is theft.

  • Austin

    He doesn’t want to just not raise taxes, he wants a 0% income tax for everyone. It’s kind of scary.

  • JeebusJuice

    ‎”Should any political party attempt to abolish social security, unemployment insurance, eliminate labor laws you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group that believes you can do these things, among them are a few Texas oil millionaires and an occasional politician from other areas. Their number is negligible and they are stupid.” – Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1954.

  • Pam Ellis

    Better the states to decide than women, I suppose.

    I sure hope states don’t decide to OK child labor, indentured servitude, state religions….you know….like before federal laws ended it.

    Which states will go back to outlawing inter-racial marriage?  It would be harder to do now, but I bet a few would never have ended it without the intervention of the Federal Government.

  • Cutencrunchy

    Unfortunately it’s not about issues it’s about votes – ideology like religion is more often just another tool for votes – how Christian or Atheist they are at any given time can be directly correlated with how many votes it will get them – or how tied down they are by previous statements (they constantly battle this conflicted agenda – it’s why they can be quite smart and appear quite idiotic)  – I will vote when it’s one person one vote and each vote is an educated one.. I know ..don’t hold your breath…

  • Heidi

    That is actually bad.  States themselves should not be deciding on my right to choose what happens to my own body.

  • Austin

    There’s also the fact that he wants education to be entirely privatized. (If you don’t have money, you don’t get an education.)

  • Austin

    There’s also the fact that he wants education to be entirely privatized. (If you don’t have money, you don’t get an education.)

  • Austin

    Being a citizen is giving consent. If you don’t want to pay taxes move.

  • Tparsons13

    Don’t confuse the Defense of Marriage Act with the Federal Marriage Amendment. The latter, which was a proposed amendment to the Constitution, would have limited marriage in the U.S to unions of one man and one woman, Ron Paul voted against.Meanwhile, DOMA allows a state to decline to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states or countries and prohibits the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages. His opposition lies NOT within defining marriage as a union strictly between a man and woman, but rather not defining marriage on a federal level whatsoever. In other words, Paul is in opposition to the federal government playing a role, in this case defining marriage (no matter the definition). Again, he wants to leave it to the states and has no desire to have sway over which way they should vote.

  • Anonymous

    I agree. A state deciding what a woman can and can’t do with her own body? Please get out of my uterus. 

    Oh, and I would never ever vote for Ron Paul. 

  • Anonymous

    “not allow millions of innocent children to continue to be slaughtered with the government’s approval.”

    Oh please.  Reason enough not to vote for this guy. 

  • Anonymous

    Just shows how far the Republican party has fallen – i.e. moved the right

  • Zach

    Ron Paul is an authoritarian statist, just as much as many other candidates. He just hates it when it’s at the federal level. He wants it at the state level, so each state can control your life. 

    He doesn’t support legalizing marijuana, he supports ending a national drug war on it. States can still make it illegal. Same goes for pretty much every other issue. He simply does not care if the state tramples on your freedoms, because hey, if you live there it must be your fault and you can move to another state if you want.

    Oh, he’s also a huge supporter of genuine capitalism, where the government doesn’t help or hinder businesses. Because that worked in the late 1800s in the US.

    He denies science, he’s anti-choice, and he doesn’t like when you have freedoms. He won’t get my vote.

  • JeebusJuice

    He has a problem with the Fed defining marriage but not the States…no difference there if you ask me.  

  • JeebusJuice

    Ron Pauls logic: as long as its not the Fed controlling your life, just the states then its ok.

  • GuestZero

    R. Paul doesn’t really give a sh*t about civil liberties.  He just wants to move the issues from a Federal level to the state level.  If a state bans gay marriage, for example, its ok because its being done on the “state” level.  He isn’t serious about individual liberties, he’s a radical statist.  His freedom is corporate freedom, for corporations to do what they want (kinda like now but worse) and states to decide on how much to control and how much freedom to allow you.  

  • sj

    “It may be acceptable to believe in the Invisible Hand, but we have to question candidates’ ability to think clearly when they believe in an Invisible Man.”
    I’m gonna be honest, I’d rather have a religious leftist in office than a hawkishly pro-market atheist.

  • GuestZero

    Instead of the Fed government not recognizing gay marriage I could look forward to a state not recognizing gay marriage…thats progress! 

  • runawayuniverse

    I know Ron Paul has a large following on websites like Stormfront and any person those people support, automatically gets a thumbs down from me. 

  • alibaba

    to where?  what an arrogant response! that is the most republican argument of them all! it’s what they say whenever you mention opposition to the war, immigration, whatever. what scares me is how fascistic so-called liberals have become. 

  • “If you don’t want to pay taxes move.”

    Where? Is there somewhere that doesn’t have taxes?

  • Gus Snarp

    Ron Paul does not support gay marriage. He says it should be left to the states, but that means states are free to ban it, as many already have. Same with abortion, he says it should be left to the states – which means overturning Roe v. Wade and an end to abortion rights in many states. His States’ Rights rhetoric is just a cover.

  • People misunderstand Ron Paul all the time. When he says the federal government shouldn’t make decision on same sex marriage, he doesn’t  mean it should be legal. He means states can decide to discriminate at their own volition. He’s also against the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Loving v Virginia would have been found in favor of Virginia in his world. Brown v Board of Education would have gone the other way, too. He sounds great if you’ve only heard a speech or two, but the more you look into his platforms, the crazier he seems. He treats the Constitution as if it’s some sort of infallible holy document that cannot be deviated from. I think he’s a nut.

  • Anonymous

    ” I would be ok with a religious candidate who kept faith a private matter. ” – Hemant Mehta

    I don’t think for a moment that any religious politician can keep their faith a private matter. It’s impossible for religious people, of any faith, to make decisions that are not based in some degree upon their beliefs. It’s like asking an Atheist to support the legalization of something that hasn’t been vetted by reason. Moreover, asking a ” Christian ” to not support the outlaw of abortions is ludicrious. They’re not supposed to support abortion, homosexuality, or drug use. To expect a politician who is Christian to look the other way and vote to pass a law that would support those types of legislation is just… dumb.

    As for candidates keeping their faith a private matter? I’d rather they didn’t. I quite enjoy knowing what brand of nonsense they allow to rule their lives *before* they get to rule mine, thank you very much.

  • In cases of theft, you get nothing for your payment. With taxes, you get America. A country without taxes isn’t a country; it’s a tract of land.

  • It is well known Ron Paul is against Evolution and women’s reproductive rights (presumably because a 1 ounce embryo has a magical soul).  I’m surprised that you are surprised Hemant.

  • ” Moreover, asking a ” Christian ” to not support the outlaw of abortions is ludicrious.”

    Not all Christians are anti-abortion. Frankly, if I think about it I’m more surprised that so many are. There’s next to nothing in the Bible about the status of a fetus (and what is there doesn’t rise to treating it as equivalent to a person).

  • Ron Paul is for school prayer and is against evolution.  How can you vote for him and live with yourself?

  • Somalia.  A libertarian’s paradise.

  • Somalia.  A libertarian’s paradise.

    Otherwise as long as you drive on the roads, drink the water, and enjoy the protection the federal, state, and local governments affords you then you really don’t have a case.

  • DownHouse

    Does that definition apply to traffic citations, bank repossessions,  alimony, and child support as well?

  • Well he wants to send tax dollars to religious charter schools.  So you can go there.

  • He has also stated he would have voted against the Civil Rights Act and he is against evolution.

    He is a states rights social conservative.  Maybe he is not a super social conservative, but he is just as socially conservative as Dick  Cheney.

  • Autumnal Harvest

    According to my dictionary, “theft” means “the taking of property without the consent of its owner”

    Really? What dictionary is that? The objectivist dictionary of made-up definitions? Because most normal dictionaries define “theft” as the illegal act in which you take someone’s property in violation of the law, and this definition thus excludes legal taxation. A division of acts into legal and illegal, and the legal determination of who is entitled to what property is usually crucial, or else we have no way of knowing whether a repo man is engaging in “theft,” or returning property to it’s rightful owner.

    I realize you probably choose to lump together all cases in which someone’s property is taken without their consent, and make no distinction as to whether their property was taken as part of a general rule, passed in a representative democracy, and applying to all people in that democracy, for services and goods that the people in the country have collectively decided to support, or whether their property was taken by a random individual on a purely arbitrary basis. And I don’t particularly care to try to convince you of the fairly obvious fact that that distinction is morally significant. But please don’t massacre the English language by claiming that your inability to make this distinction is somehow based on the dictionary.

  • Maybe that is why he said he wouldn’t have voted for the Civil Rights Act.

  • There we go with the “killing babies” deal. Oh, and using ALL CAPS does not get your idiotic point across.

    The fact of the matter is, women have every right to choose what to do with their own bodies. If another organism inhabits her body, she is the owner of her own body, and has every right to do as she sees fit.

    I hate it when people use the “double murder” law (killing a pregnant woman counting as two-person homicide) as some kind of justification for their inane claims that fetuses are people. Fetuses are not functioning members of society. They are growing organisms within another human body. I’m not going to insult anybody’s intelligence by making silly analogies to kidney donors, or occupants in a hotel/apartment, or whatever else you may have heard. Just take it for what it is: a growing organism.

    An abortion is simply the halting of this process, before the organism can become a fully grown human. Until then, it is nothing more than a collection of cells with basic, crude biological functions starting to form. A heartbeat doesn’t make it a person any more than the presence of certain types of cells, or DNA, or a brain stem, or the semblance of a human form. Scientifically, it is not a person. All this crap about fetuses being babies with rights comes from religion, and nothing more.

    Anti-abortion views are one of the last bastions of religious brainwashing that many non-religious people still cling onto. It’s one of the hardest topics to steer people away from their brainwashing, and into rationality and reason.

    I find it funny when people make an exception for abortion in cases of rape and incest. Is it not murder then? Why is it suddenly OK to “murder” the fetus (a.k.a. “baby”) when the mother was forced into having the pregnancy? Do the mother’s rights only count when the situation was forced upon her? So, otherwise, her rights mean nothing, in any other case? It makes no sense to me, because murder doesn’t suddenly cease being murder if the reason for the pregnancy changes. That’s just silly. Really think about it.

  • Also, Sen. Mark Grisanti, a Republican and a Roman Catholic, voted to legalize same-sex marriage in the state of New York. My point? Not all Christians are the same, except perhaps for the defining characteristic of being believers in and followers of Jesus Christ.

  • If you don’t like paying taxes, then please don’t call upon the fire department or police department at any time, don’t use public libraries, don’t drive or even walk on public roads and highways, don’t send your kids to public schools, etc. Taxes are necessary for a functioning modern society. Without them, we’d descend into chaos and society would crumble. Really think about what would happen if taxes were eliminated. It would certainly not be the paradise that people like RoPaul would have you believe.

  • alibaba

    ” I have accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Savior, and I endeavor every day to follow Him in all I do and in every position I advocate”-Ron Paul
    “Most importantly, [he] preached the gospel of Jesus, a gospel on which I base my life.”-Pres. Obama

    granted, this quote was not found on the barrack obama campaign website, but you would be hard pressed to easily find his views on religion or any other matters through his campaign website… say, for instance, the war on terror, or domestic spying, or extraordinary rendition. pres. obama will not give a straight answer on anything, whereas ron paul, will only give straight answers on questions. agree or disagree at least the guy is willing to concisely and concretely say what he believes in and how he will implement those beliefs. for me, that kind of honesty is refreshing. 

  • @Ron Lissemore:

    Ron Paul is for school prayer and is against evolution. How can you vote for him and live with yourself?

    Also, what is the fundamental difference between federal control of your rights, and state control of your rights? States are not mini-countries; they are sections within a larger, united country. Allowing each state to essentially be its own country is disastrous at best.

  • Exactly. The Articles of Confederation have already failed. Why should we try it again?

  • GentleGiant

    Clearly you don’t know what the word “Fascist” means. Sigh.

  • GuestZero

    So if Ron Paul eliminates taxes, does that mean that the military would dissolve and we would have a bunch of private armies a la Blackwater? 

  • Erp

    Strictly speaking no religious test means the government (or the people through the government) cannot put a religious test in place so even if the people want to elect a Catholic or a Jew or an atheist they cannot.  In contrast, individual voters are free to use religion as a means of deciding for whom to vote if they so choose.

    Huntsman is also playing his Mormonism lightly (he has been accused of being a ‘Jack Mormon’ which is a Mormon pejorative for someone who is officially Mormon but doesn’t really practice the faith [his daughter for instance had her marriage in an Episcopal cathedral]).     He may be aiming to collect all the Republican primary voters who don’t want to choose a religious extremist (or someone pretending to be one) and hoping all the other candidates split the rest of the vote.   

  • If I had a 12 year old daughter and she gets raped I would like for her to have the option to abort the rapist’s embryo, so she can have some semblance of a normal teenage life.

  • And in the vast majority of abortions they don’t suck out the brains.  I’m sure you are referring to dilation and extraction (or as the fundies term it partial birth abortion).  That is usually done when the health of the mother is at risk, and only accounted for less than 1% of abortions.

  • Austin

    Why do you assume I’m a liberal because we have differing views? I suppose I was a bit exaggerative when I said the second part. You’re other choices are to voice you’re opinions with your representatives, civil disobedience and/or revolt, and I don’t have any problem with that. But of course, you need a really strong movement for that. The sixteenth amendment gives congress the right to tax incomes if you want that changed you’re going to need a loud voice.

  • Austin

    Also, I will attempt to stop you, using peaceful means.

  • Austin

    He says he wouldn’t vote for the civil rights act because he thinks private property owners have a right to segregate and/or deny service to anyone they feel like.

  • Guest

    Hmm.  I had to read that a couple times, but it occur to me that in this quote, Eisenhower isn’t necessarily saying abolishing social security, unemployment insurance, or labor laws would be a bad thing–just that it would be political suicide, and the few who advocate for it are stupid–again, this isn’t necessarily because it would be a bad thing per se, but it could be stupid just because it would be political suicide.

    Does anyone know the context for this quote?  Was Eisenhower actually supporting these programs, or just saying touching them would be like grabbing an electrified third rail, getting you killed (in a political sense) right quick?

  • Daniel H.

    A “less safe means” to have an abortion? I thought the whole point was to kill the baby? How do you kill someone safely?

  • Daniel H.

    I’m not making an exception for rape or incest.

  • GuestZero

    You’re either pretending to be stupid or you really are that stupid.  She means safe for the mother. Reading comprehension skills are your friend

  • GregFromCos

    You forgot about his beliefs about regulation. Just tonight he again said that drug companies can be trusted to release safe products without regulation because of the free market. 

    Ron Paul: Because surviving the 1800’s the first time was not enough!

  • GuestZero

    “Now it is true that I believe this country is following a dangerous trend when it permits too great a degree of centralization of governmental functions. I oppose this–in some instances the fight is a rather desperate one. But to attain any success it is quite clear that the Federal government cannot avoid or escape responsibilities which the mass of the people firmly believe should be undertaken by it. The political processes of our country are such that if a rule of reason is not applied in this effort, we will lose everything–even to a possible and drastic change in the Constitution. This is what I mean by my constant insistence upon “moderation” in government. Should any political party attempt to abolish social security, unemployment insurance, and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group, of course, that believes you can do these things. Among them are H. L. Hunt (you possibly know his background), a few other Texas oil millionaires, and an occasional politician or business man from other areas. Their number is negligible and they are stupid.”

  • GuestZero

    Yes, he did support these social programs

  • GregFromCos

    After tonight’s debate, the only remotely sane one is Jon Huntsman. I feel like he is the ONLY one of them who has seen the inside of The Economist. His comments  on foreign policy were spot on, although far too nuanced for the anti intellectual crowd.

    His religious views are just as bad as the rest. But he does not strike me as an anti intellectual republican. He strikes me as more of a throw back to the the Buckley type republican. I’d actually enjoy sitting down to dinner with him, I think he’d have lots of world experience he knows intimately. I can’t say I feel that way about any of the others.

    He unfortunately has 0 chance of winning the primary though because of his science stands, so it won’t matter. However given how poorly Obama is leading, I actually possibly could be tempted by Huntsman. But not by any of the others.

  • Riverrunner

    You know it’s SAD when the Mormons are the most sane candidates for the Republicans.

  • But contrary to his other positions, Ron Paul has supported many federal restrictions on abortions, such as the federal ban on some late-term abortions. Shouldn’t that also be “left up to the states”? Apparently consistency isn’t his strong suit.

  • Well except for the 14th amendment, establishment clause, interstate commerce clause, etc.  He doesn’t like those parts of the Constitution.

  • As I said above, Ron Paul has supported and continues to support Federal abortion restrictions. His “states rights” positions are a ruse to cover the fact that he’s a run-of-the-mill social conservative who happens to also be anti-military.

  • Ron Paul: a man of priorities.  LOL!

  • Rick

    As a libertarian democrat and an atheist, the support for Ron Paul comes from support for a handful of basic issues.  The minimum “litmus” test for libertarians in the United States would be 1. being against the drug war, 2. being against gun control, and 3. being in favor of individual economic freedom(such as being against eminent domain for private interests).  Libertarians have trouble attracting qualified candidates due to the fact that people don’t like to run for office if it will take a relatively long time to build support.  Therefore, we get candidates like Ron Paul. I would venture to say that most libertarians would not agree with Ron Paul on his positions on abortion and religion, but he’s all we’ve got right now.

  • Andrew Pang

    Any republicans lurking here might consider Fred Karger, a Jewish gay rights activist who hasn’t really worn the religion peacock feathers as much as I’ve seen, instead of these religiously obsessed fools. Yes I know some of y’all have heard that Ron Paul is anti-war and would legalize smoking dope. Here’s a profile of Karger in The Guardian:

  • GuestZero

    He wouldn’t legalize marijuana. He would leave that up to the states to legalize or criminalize.  

  • Austin

    Don’t forget the supremacy clause. XD

  • usclat

    You obviously are not familiar with the idea of implied consent, which, in part, applies to the citizens of any state (in the classic political science definition not just US States) such that their choosing to live there is a de facto approval of and for the laws of that state though not expressly approved by those same citizens. Therefore taxes by definition are not theft. Unless of course there is no law that provides for them. 

  • usclat

    Hear hear!

  • usclat

    Hear hear!

  • Austin

    You also have to be against all welfare programs and public schooling and federally funded roads and NASA. Otherwise, you’re not really libertarian.

  • Daniel

    Since you accept that a woman is the owner of her body, then doesn’t she also own the fruits of her labor? If preventing her from aborting a fetus is immoral because she owns her body, then isn’t it also immoral to tax X percentage of her income that was produced by her body and her time that she also owns?

  • GuestZero

    are you equating taxation to abortion? I don’t follow your (flawed) logic here.  

  • Dgbrunson

    Gary Johnson accepts evolution. I’m not sure what his religious views are, but I’m pretty sure he is not a Christian. He is honest like Ron Paul, and doesn’t come with the kooky factor.

  • GuestZero

    He is a christian…a Lutheran in fact.  and they are both Kooky.

  • Virgin Rose

    I tend to vote for moderate candidates, so if I had to choose the least odious candidate from the Republican camp it would be Huntsman. I lived in Utah during his tenure as governor, and we were rather depressed when he gave up his post to become ambassador to China.
    The biggest reason I liked him was because he was quite adept at wrangling the bat-sh*t-crazy lot of uber-conservative legislators that dominated the Utah state congress, which I would hope he would put to play on the US congress if he was ever elected president. He also managed to secure health benefits for same-sex partners of government employees and helped reform some of the more asinine state liquor laws. He also tended to downplay his Mormonism, and in the grand scheme of things I would vote for an evolution-accepting Mormon over an evangelical christian any day.
    The only thing that worries me is the possibility of him pulling a Mitt Romney and deciding overnight that he’s now ultra-conservative. Not that it matters at this point, he isn’t spouting enough populist rhetoric for the current tastes of his party.

  • Dan W

    Ron Paul is just as kooky as most of the Republican candidates running for President. Not that I’d vote for a Republican anyway. I’m finding myself stuck between voting for Obama in 2012 despite him not being liberal enough or voting for a more liberal third-party candidate who likely won’t win. It’s irritating.

  • GuestZero

    Thats why voting is meaningless, its a vicious cycle that can never be broken.   

    “If voting changed anything it would be illegal”  

    Voting for two factions of the same business party isn’t going to resolve anything 

  • pinko

    Yes, we get it, you don’t value the health or autonomy of women and when they get pregnant they ought to shut up and function as incubators.  Blah blah blah…

  • Austin

    That’s why we need the Alternative Voting Method. You can list who you want the most in order or not list them. If your first vote went to the candidate in last your next will receive your vote. Then you repeat the process with the next last place candidate factoring in the new votes. Do this until the last 2 candidates. This system still leans toward a two party system, but you can vote for a third party or independent and still get a vote when he/she doesn’t come close to winning. We need a politician who will actually try and make an amendment for this.

  • Michael Thelen

    I doubt Huntsman buys the Joseph Smith story. The latest statement on faith that I heard Huntsman make is that he is more spiritual than religious, and that he was raised Mormon but his relationship to the LDS church is “tough to define”. And they’re raising their adopted Indian daughter in the Hindu faith, linked below. This strikes me as a pluralistic outlook, which is *way* better than religious fundamentalism.

  • Thin-ice

    Hey, guest, if Eisenhower called opponents of SS stupid, and he said “beware of the military-industrial complex”, then I think we would call him a Democrat these days, and maybe even a liberal Democrat, because there are damn few Democratic politicians with any backbone left at all, like Eisenhower had. He might even have been too liberal to run in a Democratic primary these days, let alone a Republican primary.

  • Thin-ice

    And the Democratic Party has marched in lock-step to the right behind the Republicans. What used to be the political center 30 years ago is now way out on the left fringe.

  • Thin-ice

    And the Democratic Party has marched in lock-step to the right behind the Republicans. What used to be the political center 30 years ago is now way out on the left fringe.

  • And what if she’s 35?

  • Brokenleaf

    What a candidate believes – kinda important

    What a candidate would probably do as president – extremely important

    Ron Paul would try to1) Prioritize cuts in oversize expenditures, especially the military2) Prioritize cuts in corporate welfare3) Use 50 percent of the savings from cuts in overseas spending to shore up entitlement 4) programs for those who are dependent on them and the other 50 percent to pay down the debt5) Provide for reduction in federal bureaucracy and lay out a plan to return responsibility for education to the states6) Begin transitioning entitlement programs from a system where all Americans are forced to participate into one where taxpayers can opt out of the programs and make their own provisions for retirement and medical careRon Paul might believe in stuff that atheists disagree with, but the guy is just not that big on social issues.  If Paul is elected we should expect sweeping economic reform but quite frankly I wouldn’t expect sweeping social reform.  He’d probably veto some things, but that’s about it.Right now I don’t think we need much sweeping social reform on a federal level.  We definitely need sweeping economic reform.  Ron Paul meets this criteria.All the other candidates will send us backwards socially, and won’t change much economically.

  • Thin-ice

    That’s because Obama is the ultimate pragmatic politician. He dare not state his true religious views. It would be political suicide in today’s America. He got to where he is by not speaking the unalloyed truth. How else can a person survive the Chicago political world?

    I don’t like it any more than you do, but that’s all we have left in American presidential politics. As long as it takes hundreds and hundreds of millions of dollars to conduct a campaign, no candidate will tell the truth to anyone holding big pots of money. The Eisenhower days are over.

  • I hate to break it to the Atheist Ron Paul supporters, but he’s a nutjob and he’s also a Creationist.

    He said he believes in Creationism and doesn’t accept Evolution.

    So, Doctor or no, some good ideas or no, he’s not qualified to lead in my book.

    By the way, he also has a HUGE contingent of support from racists and white supremacists. Look at what people write about him on Stormfront sometime, and he has refused to reject their money and ideology.

    So, please, don’t support Ron Paul if you’re sane. Just because he has a few ideas which you might like and agree with does not make him sane and does not make him a good choice.

  • Anonymous

    Good luck America.

  • Anonymous

    IOW, he needs to be encouraged to run as a 3rd party candidate. 🙂

  • “We must stand for life — not allow millions of innocent children to continue to be slaughtered with the government’s approval.”Glad to see this statement against American warmongering in Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, and Pakistan. I agree 100%.

  • Shumok

    So what you are advocating is instead of 50 states, where some might discriminate, what we have instead is one big state that could discriminate against everyone?

  • Anonymous

    Considering how much media consideration Ron Paul gets (see: none) I don’t think he’s really worth stressing over.

  • Agnostic 1

    There is so much spin here it’s delusional.  So he’s a christian.  Ok.

    Does he force it down other peoples throats?  No.

    Does he force his disbelief in evolution on others?  No.

    Look at his record of his actions.

    He’s the only congressman to opt out of their cushy retirement program because he views it as immoral.  He walks the walk.

    He’s against abortions because he believes in Life then liberty then the pursuit of happiness.  He doesn’t feel it is correct to take tax money from all people to fund abortion which some are patently against.  However, he feels if the people want the freedom to have abortions they can.  Just not with tax dollars.

    MORE importantly, he cares about the life of those 18 year old servicemen and women.

    He’s the only anti war candidate.

    Ask yourself this.  If he’s so PRO deregulation which would allow MASSIVE profits for the evil companies, why is it no businesses donate to his campaign?

    He would put an end to the loopholes so the fortune 500 would actually have to pay federal income taxes.

    He would put an end to the perks and big businesses would have to fairly compete.

    Why are these ideas and beliefs viewed as delusional?

    You are aware we have over 700 bases in over 100 countries don’t you?


  • I’d like a source please.

  • She should have that same right.  Not sure what point you are trying to make…

  • Here you go buddy:

    Right from the horses mouth.

  • Daniel H.

    I know what she meant, and the air was thick with irony. Hence my response.

  • Daniel H.

    Yes that’s it exactly. “Blah blah blah” included.

  • Daniel H.

    Remind me to go inform the pro-life lobby that their secret has been uncovered. All this time, it isn’t murder that they’re concerned about, no, they only want to make sure that women everywhere remain in an unhealthy and dependent state. You have found us out.

  • Daniel H.

    Ok third comment in a row and I’ll stop.

    Pinko, you sound like a conspiracy theorist. Let me guess: Conservatives don’t like Obama because he’s black?

  • Anonymous

    The far more common situation is that a state doesn’t allow something, but the federal government does.

  • Anonymous

    It’s possible in other countries. Tony Blair for example is pretty religious. But you’d be hard pressed to find more than a handful of public statements about it. The few times he has done it, I think he was criticized for it. Also by his own people, because such statements are simply uncommon and bad etiquette

  • Anonymous

    It’s kind of anachronistic. When the US young and many people didn’t travel much, I guess it made sense.

    But today you can fly everywhere in a couple of hours. People go on vacation all the time or more elsewhere for work. It’s simply ridiculous to have rights in one state and lose them when you cross a border.

    Taking away their ability to control people’s private lives doesn’t mean they are also losing sovereignty over things like economic policies.

  • Anonymous

    It’s kind of anachronistic. When the US young and many people didn’t travel much, I guess it made sense.

    But today you can fly everywhere in a couple of hours. People go on vacation all the time or more elsewhere for work. It’s simply ridiculous to have rights in one state and lose them when you cross a border.

    Taking away their ability to control people’s private lives doesn’t mean they are also losing sovereignty over things like economic policies.

  • Patches

    *cough*…Medical Marijuana…*cough*

  • Ryan Booker

    From what I know of him, I could happily vote for Jon Huntsman. He may be religious but he doesn’t seem to take it to the extremes of, say, Bachmann or Perry and he, in general, seems to be a reasonable, openminded sort of person. Further, as alibaba pointed out, the Democrats certainly aren’t providing a nonreligious alternative. It’s all well and good to criticize Republicans for holding silly religious beliefs but it shouldn’t be ignored that Barack Obama holds a number of rather silly religious beliefs himself.

  • Anonymous

    But it does go into the slaughter of first born.  Just one more thing that makes zero sense in religion.

  • I don’t CARE what my elected representatives believe.  I really just don’t care.  I will not vote for someone *because* he or she is an atheist.  I really don’t understand all the disgruntled Democrats who have jumped on the Ron Paul bandwagon.  I can almost see his appeal to white, heterosexual pot-smoking male voters of significant financial means but even that requires the blocking of a whole lot of information.  Anyone who chooses Ron Paul because they feel Barack Obama is an impotent ruler needs to consider heavily how little of what Ron Paul embraces could ever be a reality in our 3-tiered government.  

  • Ace Manum

    RON PAUL 2012? Know WHO you vote for!

  • Anonymous

    @ Hemant:  Regarding Herman Cain you forgot this one…”Don’t try to pass a 2700 page bill”

  • Chana Messinger

    Hemant, you say “Jon Huntsman? Sure, he accepts evolution and climate change, but that ought to be a given for any educated person, right? He doesn’t hide his Mormonism, though, and that could be his downfall. After all, if he believes the Joseph Smith story, what else will he fall for?”

    And that kind of reaction has been really common across the atheist blogosphere recently, but there’s no evidence to suggest that religious people are more gullible or less critically thinking about nonreligious topics than anyone else. In fact, social scientists call this the Fallacy of Religious Congruence. For better or for worse, people, including religious people, are not perfectly consistent in their beliefs, actions or values, and so if we’d like to base our decisions on evidence, we shouldn’t fault religious political candidates on those grounds. What do you think?

  • Amy C

    Isn’t that what Australia does?

  • Amy C

    You most certainly can separate your religious beliefs from public policy. I convinced my brother-in-law that the government shouldn’t ban same-sex marriage because the only reason he has to be against it is religious. He admitted on the spot that he had no secular reason to be against it, so he came to realize government policies that would ban same-sex marriage is enforcing his religion on other people. He said he wouldn’t support the fight, but that he would never support banning it again. The same goes for drug use policies. If there is not a secular reason to be against it (that wouldn’t also apply to cigarettes/alcohol etc.) then the government cannot prohibit it. He now recognizes that many things he thought the government should prohibit are actually personal choices that each person should make and that the government cannot prohibit an activity simply because his religion says so.

    I haven’t been able to get him to come around on the issue of abortion, mainly because those against abortion aren’t necessarily against it for religious reasons–that issue is wrapped up in a person’s nuanced views on how bodily autonomy rights should be applied.

  • Amy C

    “Does he force his disbelief in evolution on others?  No.”
    He has stated in the past that he wants to get rid of the Department of Education, in other words, he wants a private education system. This system would obviously favor the religious and the rich, and there would be no guarantee that children are learning what they need to learn. Also, if there were a candidate who disbelieved heliocentrism, would you want them running the country? What other scientific advancements will he brush off as false because his holy book says so?

    “He’s against abortions because he believes in Life then liberty then the
    pursuit of happiness.  He doesn’t feel it is correct to take tax money
    from all people to fund abortion which some are patently against. 
    However, he feels if the people want the freedom to have abortions they
    can.  Just not with tax dollars.”

    I’m against all wars, does  that mean I can have the federal government not spend my tax dollars on war? No, that’s not how it works. Policies that limit government funding for abortions do one thing: prevent poor women (probably the ones who need it most) from having control of their bodies. Should the government stop funding food stamps because the money a woman saves from using food stamps could be used to fund abortions? The whole idea is ridiculous and it’s never applied to any other issue. You say he believes in “Life” but obviously not the life of the mother.

  • That’s why I’m not dismissing him offhand — I think the fact that he accepts evolution despite being a religious person shows that he can separate the two realms. Still, I think questioning *why* he believes the Mormon myth is a legitimate question — which parts of the faith does he accept and which does he reject? We should hear a response to that.

  • Shumok

    Patches just made a great counterpoint to your post. Also, if a state doesn’t allow something, atleast you have an option to move. If your country doesn’t allow something, you are really screwed.

    Additionally, states are more likely to get things right for their localities. Look at the gay marriage thing. Liberal states that want it could get it without the federal government butting in.


  • Anonymous

    It amazes me that people still confuse libertarians with progressives.

  • For a pregnant, single nineteen-year-old in, say, Oklahoma, which has hypothetically outlawed abortion (as have all the states surrounding it) moving (or even just travelling) halfway across the country within the required specified time would be a near-impossible and unaffordable task.  She would effectively have to sacrifice bodily autonomy because of the state she lives in, even if she’s still an American.

    It’s a lot easier to trample civil liberties at a state level.

  • And STILL nobody mentions Buddy Roemer, who is a moderate Republican with a solid jobs record and a platform based on campaign finance reform. The broken finance reform system is the reason why we have to choose between all of these shitbirds in the first place.

  • Dan

    *cough* Pothead with myopic view of Paul because of his stance on legalization *cough*

  • The counter to your argument is your 19-year old in oklahoma being able to get an abortion on that stat or one nearby, versus abortion being prohibited nationally.  

    If you look at both cases, paul’s position is more likely to result in a situation you like. 

  • Denis Robert

    There’s really no such thing as “medical marijuana”. Sorry. 

    Also: Paul is not really your ally. He would give you the right to smoke pot, and then throw you in jail for sharing your joint.

  • Denis Robert

    I don’t see how what you’re saying is any different from what the people you’re replying to are saying. He’s fighting for the right to discriminate, nothing more, nothing less, just like all the “states’ rights” people. They don’t want freedom for you; they only want freedom for themselves. The freedom to amass as much money as they can get away with without causing a revolution, and to piss on anyone they consider unworthy.

  • Denis Robert

    He’s actually been pretty clear about the fact that he’s against same-sex marriage. He feels that the responsibility for discriminating against gays and lesbians should be the States, rather than the State (yeah, it’s that dumb an idea). 

    But what bugs me the most is that people call him “principled”. His only principle is his own pocket, just like all libertarians. Most libertarians come from upper-middle-class backgrounds, where they were raised without a care in the world, with their parents footing the entire bill for their education (thanks, unions, for the salaries that made that possible!) They are really just a bunch of selfish brats who believe that their financial success is due to them because they are really just better people (= aristocrats). It’s a secular form of the prosperity gospel.

  • Denis Robert

    He’s actually far more conservative than Cheney ever was. He’s pro-Life, a Christian Dominionist (which is one of the real reasons for his libertarianism (the other is pure greed); he doesn’t want government to control the people, he wants the Church to do that instead), anti-Gay and anti-Poor (in that: he likes that they exist, since it provides the rich with good slave material, they should just not make it so obvious). 

    Cheney is certainly not a Dominionist (he believes he’s the one who should be in charge, not those idiot clerics), and he’s pro-marriage-equality.

  • Anonymous

    Well applying biblical logic it would seem that once babies are fully formed and have been given birth to, it’s ok to kill them – God’s will and all that.  But when they’re cookin’ in the female it’s murder.  After all, that baby might be born a man and the bible don’t take kindly to putting the rights of a woman above much of anything, let alone a small cluster of cells that might eventually grow into a man.

  • Anonymous

    Wait, what?

  • Abortion hasn’t been outlawed at the national level, despite its having been legalized decades ago.  However, many states are actively trying to suppress access to abortions at the state level.  This isn’t hypothetical, this is based on actual reality.

  • Austin

    I’m not supporting him in any way, I’m just saying his reasons. :/

  • Austin

    I don’t know. :/

  • Austin

    I don’t know. :/

  • CS42

     Absolutely.  He makes a good fuss about limiting government control, but much of what he calls “control” I call “protection.”

  • Austin

    He might be the only anti-war candidate but his idea that states can do whatever they want (i.e. declare a state religion, stop people of certain religions from taking public office, segregating. The list is endless.) but the federal government can’t collect taxes or provide any services is absolutely revolting. I like his anti-war view and his anti-prohibition view, (although he will leave it up to states.) but the rest of his policies are quite insane.

  • Hard to support a candidate who people “misunderstand … all the time”.

  • Kevin S.

    You do know there’s a difference between libertarians and anarcho-capitalists, right?

    The lack of basic understanding of what a libertarian actually is in this thread is kind of shocking.

  • Anonymous

    Though to be fair, ALL laws sacrifice bodily autonomy in some way. Getting drafted forces your body to risk its own life before enemy fire. Being taxed forces your body to work more before you get leisure money. Laws about trespassing decide where your body is allowed to be at any given time. Abortion law should be decided the same way every other law is: you should be given freedom up to the point that you start hurting other people. This gets back to the whole debate of when personhood begins. If you can show that personhood hasn’t been achieved for the fetus at a particular point then it means that the abortion doesn’t hurt it and it is more acceptable.

  • Kevin S.

    You do know he is against our foreign military engagements, right?

  • Al2wilk

    Yes, I read where he was raised Mormon, his wife was raised Episcopalian, and they try to incorporate both of those and Buddhism, for their daughter, in their spiritual lives.  That flagged for me immediately that he is not a true Mormon, but probably a social, or cultural Mormon.  Devout Mormons don’t really allow for other beliefs.  It doesn’t look like he has a chance at the nomination, but he is definitely the lessor of some pretty big evils.

  • Anonymous

    Although Atheists more than anyone should see that mainstream Christianity is just as crazy as Mormonism, but just formed longer ago.

  • Awesome

    Ron Paul absolutely is a nut.  I was wondering what to do with my life last night when I realized that I hate myself, so I watched the republican presidential primary debate.  The candidates were discussing how much we need a fence on the border with Mexico when Ron Paul felt he needed to warn America that, just as a fence could be used to keep Mexicans out, it could also be used to keep Americans in!  Look out, the Illuminati is out to get you!  If his interviews with Alex Jones are any indication, he also believes that the New World Order is a threat to the sovereignty of America, that American currency is all counterfeit since it’s not on a gold standard, and also probably that tinfoil hats are the only way to protect us from the United Nations’ mind control waves.

    Jon Huntsman should probably win the primary, but unfortunately, he’s just not crazy enough to attract Republican voters.

  • Kevin S.

    Holy generalizations, Batman!  It actually is possible to believe that neoclassical economic policies produce better results than Keynesian approaches without crafting one’s argument to better suit one’s bottom line.  One can argue against certain federal regulations with the Ninth Amendment in mind more than the Tenth.  Was that baseless caricaturizing of an entire group of people fun and enjoyable?  Because I know plenty of libertarians, and not one of them comes close to fitting your crass attempt at labeling them.

  • Ben A

    If Ron Paul’s positions were the same but for other reasons, would that make it any better? Ron Paul will not violate the Constitution, even if that means going against the popular Christian political view, of which is often does (and why some Christians won’t vote for him)

  • Anonymous

    But he’s against public schools, so prayers would be just fine in a private institution.  His stance on evolution is stupid, but he might be pandering to the large number of Republican voters who call it evil-ution.

  • Jeff

    I am a labor worker and practically live paycheck to paycheck and also a diehard Libertarian.  The federal government was never intended to have so much power over the states.  It was basically only supposed to settle disputes between states, enforce the constitution, and defend our borders and now it doesn’t do any of that.  We need to minimize the federal government and give the power back to the states to make their own laws, if one state screws up, it only affects that state, if the federal government screws up, it affects everyone.

  • Anonymous

    I hate the absolutists on both sides.  No-one who is ‘pro-choice’
    supports the right of a woman to do what she wants with her body 1 day
    before she is due to give birth, it is all a matter of degree.

    Most people agree that a woman’s body is hers to do with as she pleases but, at
    some point, she also becomes responsible for another living creature. 
    Pro-life people falsely paint this time as conception, pro-choice use
    language that appears to put this at birth.  Both positions are
    untenable for anyone with a smattering of science.

    So stop using such loaded language and agree that a woman is not always the complete owner of her own body.  Being the opposite of a wrong position does not always put you in the right position.  Neither does it foster sensible conversation with the people in the middle.  The correct response to crazy is not more crazy.

  • I totally agree with the “right to swing your fist ends at my nose” philosophy.  My issue is that in practice, many states are already demonstrating hostility towards women seeking abortions, regardless of how far along they are, even with federal protections in place.  Taking those protections away, these states have already shown that they will NOT honor a woman’s right to this private medical decision without unduly forcing themselves in with unaccredited “counselors,” invasive ultrasound procedures, and flat-out lying and misleading statements that doctors must read to patients, even if they disagree with the information.

  • Anonymous

    It sounds like we agree. I personally have no problem with national laws which set up abortion rights even over the objection of states simply because the national government is there to make laws and if that is the will of the people then it should be done. It is pretty clear that the Republican regulation laws are passed simply to shut down abortion clinics and the Republicans do little to deny this any more.

  • Yeah, and that’s something that worries me immensely–it basically becomes a tyranny of the majority, and certain groups are working to enact that even with a federal authority in place.  If the majority of a state’s population voted to outlaw the practice of Islam or force all pregnant woman to give birth, it would be blatant discrimination against a minority.  Certain rights cannot be subjected to a vote, and many of the “state’s rights” arguments seem to center around the idea of majority rule, regardless of the situation. 

    On a totally different note, wow, this box is getting skinny.

  • From a non smoker:

    Neither of those things are true at all. Medical marijuana HAS proven to be useful in clinical trials, and in many cases it’s more effective than other drugs.

    And Paul is not for legalization for purely medicinal purposes…he’s in favor of ending the War on Drugs entirely and legalizing all drugs. It’s amazing to the extent that people make assumptions about the man rather than just read or listen to what he has to say and go from there.

  • The Constitution forbids state laws from overriding Constitutional law. So no state could just “vote to outlaw the practice of Islam” – it violates the establishment clause.

  • The difference lies in philosophy. If you don’t believe that a fetus is a life, then yeah, abortion laws are BS. If you do believe it’s human life, then suddenly they make all the sense in the world.

  • Wow, you’re clearly just going by what you’ve heard about Ron Paul.

    If there’s one politician that I think would respect the establishment clause it’s Paul. He’s CONSTANTLY saying things like “I have my religious beliefs, but it’s not the role of the government to favor mine over anyone else’s or vice versa.”

    If you think he’s not in favor of the abolition of slavery, you clearly don’t know anything about libertarianism.

    And he’s not against the interstate commerce clause, he’s against mis-interpretation of it. If you actually read the words on the Constitution and writings of the framers such as the Federalist papers, his stance is correct, too.

  • “When he says the federal government shouldn’t make decision on same sex
    marriage, he doesn’t  mean it should be legal. He means states can
    decide to discriminate at their own volition.”

    Actually precisely what he says is that the government shouldn’t be involved in marriage at all. He thinks marriage should be a personal matter between the people getting married.

    “He’s also against the Civil Rights Act of 1964.”

    You’re confusing him with Rand Paul, and even then, he was in favor of 90% of the Civil Rights Act – the only part he was against was the mandate forbidding discrimination in the private sector, but he was very much in favor of repealing Jim Crow, and he was in favor of making discrimination illegal within the government, which is most of what the law did. In the end, he said he’d vote for it if it was the best he could get.

    “Loving v Virginia would have been found in favor of Virginia in his world.”

    No, it wouldn’t have. That case was won by individual rights, which is what Paul’s entire platform is based on.

    “Brown v Board of Education would have gone the other way, too.”

    Again, no. The Board was a government entity, not a private one. The government doesn’t have the right to racially discriminate. Now, he WOULD want to abolish federally funded public schools, so if you wanna go after that, at least you’d be attacking a legit position that he actually holds.

    “He treats the Constitution as if it’s some sort of infallible holy document that cannot be deviated from.”

    …Yeah, who would want a President that bases their policy on the supreme law of the land, AM I RIGHT?!

  • I think it’s hilarious that the same board that generally comes to the consensus of “I hate the WBC, but they have the right to be bigoted” can’t apply that logic to others.

    You don’t show a dedication to freedom by standing up only for people’s rights to do things you like. You show a dedication to freedom when you allow people to exercise their rights even if you vehemently disagree with the way they do it.

  • What your describing is how the Constitution was written.

    “Oh, he’s also a huge supporter of genuine capitalism, where the
    government doesn’t help or hinder businesses. Because that worked in the
    late 1800s in the US.”

    It did, actually. Look at the standard of living in the US – that’s the biggest increase it ever saw.

  • Wow, that’s weird, I didn’t get any of that but pro-life from anything Paul has ever said. Maybe you could cite some sources?

  • “I don’t understand it and it scares me, so I should attack it probably!”

  • Not really. Mainstream Christianity is pretty insane, but Mormonism takes an already insane doctrine and adds magical underwear, Jesus in America, and a bunch of other nutty stuff.

  • If you look at the statistics on the matter, the FDA is more likely to “protect” you from a drug that actually works but gets bottlenecked in their system for years than from a drug that will kill you. It’s easy to point to the few instances where the FDA prohibited the sale of a drug that turned out to be dangerous (and often, they fail to even do that). It’s not so easy to point to the instances where the FDA delayed the release of a drug that could have saved lives.

  • What’s the functional difference, really? If your boss takes money out of your paycheck, it’s theft. If the government does it, it’s taxes.

  • Hmm…quote looks a lot different in context. Oopsie!

  • Why? The income tax is a pretty recent invention and it was never intended to be permanent. (Also: It was originally targeted – only the rich would have their income taxed. We can argue about whether or nott wealth trickles down, but taxes DEFINITELY trickle down.) Why is it scary to collect taxes from a method other than taxing income?

  • “Then, look at the fact that one of his major issues is the gold

    Yes. A standard that many believe that we left after the Great Depression, but in fact Nixon was the one to abolish it. And inflation has run wild ever since.

    “He wants to limit the Federal Reserve massively, though he has
    said he would not necessarily get rid of it.”

    Why is this bad? A lot of people are scared by that idea, but I’ve found very few can tell me WHY it scares them.

    “He wants to not have the
    government involved in disaster relief.”

    Just not FEMA. The National Guard and Coast Guard are legitimate disaster relief agencies.

    “He would eliminate the
    Department of Education.”

    And why is that bad? People tend to not know that the Department of Education didn’t exist until 1980. If you look at when our public education system started to go down hill, it was…about 1980. These are the geniuses who came up with No Child Left Behind. Do you really think they’re good at what they do?

    “He would not raise taxes (which, while I am not
    certain if he has said it explicitly, would mean not having
    corporations pay more).”

    It would mean not having EVERYONE pay more. The actual effect of a tax hike is that it tends to effect the middle class the most. Rich people are more able to take advantage of tax credits and what have you, so they effectively pay a lower rate than they’re “supposed” to pay. Poor people generally get all their money back in a tax refund. The middle class has neither of those things going for them, and they’re the only ones that have to bear the full brunt of a tax increase. But we keep increasing taxes and lamenting the shrinking middle class.

    “He wants to end affirmative action.”

    Only the mandates that come with it.

  • ..You’re an Ayn Rand fan, aren’t you? If not, you should read her work, I think you’d sympathize with her.

  • Well…yeah. If it’s at the state level you know what state not to move to. If it’s at the federal level your marriage isn’t a marriage anywhere in the US.

  • They’d be sorely disappointed to learn that Ron Paul has done a lot of work with his district’s chapter of the NAACP.

  • Well, you felt the need to bring up her age, presumably for a reason.

  • Well, you felt the need to bring up her age, presumably for a reason.

  • Not sure about Australia, but some countries do hold elections that way.

  • He equates abortion with murder. Murder isn’t a states rights issue, thus, by his logic, neither is abortion.

  • The fact that you actually think states would legalize child labor or that they even COULD legalize state religions if they wanted to (the Constitution prohibits it) says a lot about what you know on these matters.

  • And also secular charter schools, but that’s less scary, so let’s leave that out.

  • “He has stated in the past that he wants to get rid of the Department of
    Education, in other words, he wants a private education system.”

    Those two things are not the same thing. The Department of Education has only existed since 1980. Public education in the United States existed long before then.

    “I’m against all wars, does  that mean I can have the federal government
    not spend my tax dollars on war? No, that’s not how it works.”

    You’ve just made a pretty strong argument for less government.

  • Well yeah, he hates those things too.

    Oh wait, to you he’s a Republican so he’s automatically pro war, pro military industrial complex.

    Carry on.

  • I will say that Huntsman impressed me in the Reagan debate. A lot of what he said made a lot of sense. I get the feeling that he won’t get the Presidential nomination, but he’s probably pretty high on everyone’s list for a potential VP candidate.

  • “The lack of basic understanding of what a libertarian actually is in this thread is kind of shocking.”

    In this thread, in the world at large. It’s as if they think libertarianism and objectivism are the same things, despite the objectivists generally hating libertarians.

  • Where do you people get this idea in your head that Ron Paul would eliminate all taxes?

  • OK. So if I steal your money, and then go to McDonalds and buy a bunch of extra value meals, but I come back and give you a single fry, it’s not theft. I understand now.

  • That would be an anarchist’s paradise, sir.

    Seriously. Know the difference between libertarianism and anarcho capitalism. This is getting old.

  • “He says he’s not going to use his faith for political gain, but he’s
    already letting it guide him to adopt an anti-abortion platform.”

    If you read his reasoning for being pro-life, it has nothing at all to do with faith. Check out the book “Liberty Defined” from the library or something. You only have to read the very first chapter to get his view on abortion. It’s about 4 pages long. Not much research at all to avoid false statements like this.

  • GuestZero

    He’s called himself pro-life many times. I’m sure you can do a quick google search on your own.

    ^ Paul, Ron (1999-10-27). “Providing for Consideration of H.R. 2260, Pain Relief Promotion Act of 1999”.Congressional Record. U.S. House of Representatives. Archived from the original on September 8, 2007. Retrieved 2007-09-27.

  • ” I didn’t get any of that but pro-life from anything Paul has ever said.”

    Maybe I’ll need to break it down more clearly than that?

    Ron Paul has said he’s pro life. I know that thing. When has he said any of those other things?

  • GuestZero

    As if most people have a real “choice”.  People go where opportunities and jobs are.  

  • GuestZero

    The fact that you think that laws have not already been put in place that are prohibited by the constitution says a lot about what YOU know on these matters.

  • GuestZero

    The point is that tax dollars will be going to RELIGIOUS institutions, which is a violation of the separation of Church and State.  Sending tax dollars to a secular institution does not violate this. 

  • GuestZero

    Somalia is neither. I would suggest you brush up on anarchist political theory.  Anarcho-capitalism isn’t even part of the anarchist political theory, only an-caps consider themselves anarchists for some odd reason.  

  • GuestZero

    Not really, well that is if you have reading comprehension skills.  Otherwise you would notice that its not different at all. 

  • GuestZero

    Slaves also had a better standard of living in the 1800’s compared to the 1600’s, is that a valid argument for slavery? 

    My point is that standard of living is not a good argument at all.  

  • GuestZero

    Nope. I read her stuff too and it made me hate her more actually.  I’m a Libertarian Socialist…but more narrowly an Anarchist (social anarchism)

  • GuestZero

    Actually he has stated many times (a google search would verify this) that Abortion is a state’s right issue.  

  • GuestZero

    He’s not for legalization of drugs. The only things he says is that it should be decided by states.  The only republican that I know that has actually supported LEGALIZATION is Gary Johnson.  As far as I know Ron Paul has not made known (at least publicly) his stance on drugs.  

  • So stop using such loaded language and agree that a woman is not always the complete owner of her own body.

    I’m about ready to throw up. Really read what you just wrote, and think long and hard before you accept that statement to be true.

    I will NEVER agree that a woman is not always the complete owner of her own body. What you typed above is disgusting and wrong, and taking some magical “middle ground” isn’t necessarily the superior choice.

    How dare you insinuate that I even should agree that a woman is not always the complete owner of her own body. The fetus has a right to life, but not when it infringes upon the woman’s right to her own body. It’s the woman’s choice whether or not SHE wants to remain pregnant. Once we have forced pregnancy and childbirth, we have lost a great deal of our humanity.

    You need to reassess your priorities, and soon. This country was founded upon personal liberties and freedom, and once we take the rights away from a fully-grown functioning member of society, and give them instead to a fetus, we lose that entirely.

  • Then I’m not dignifying your position with a response. (Except the one I just gave. Ah well, still.)

  • GuestZero

    Sorry, just did my research on that and found that he isn’t really for eliminating the Income Tax (or any other tax). 

    “During the 2011 CPAC conference, he said he would support a flat income tax of 10 %”

  • Well, you just made it even more thick, with stupidity.

  • For a man who, to this day, says he would have opposed the Civil Rights Act, that’s actually kind of ironic.

  • For a man who, to this day, says he would have opposed the Civil Rights Act, that’s actually kind of ironic.

  • GuestZero

    Ron Paul isn’t even a Libertarian (Libertarian in the way its used in the U.S.)

  • GuestZero

    Only in the U.S. is Libertarianism=Right wing.  Every where else Libertarianism is actually a progressive left political philosophy.  

  • Do those laws tend to be federal or state laws?

  • The funds wouldn’t go to the schools. They would be in the form of tax credits to parents which would cover all educational expenses. That’s not an establishment clause violation.

  • Somalia has no government right now. Merriam-Webster defines anarchy as “absence of government.” By the dictionary definition of the word, Somalia is an anarchistic society. Just because it’s not a utopia like anarchists imagine doesn’t mean it’s not what it is. And if someone thinks there can be a capitalistic utopia with no government, they’re an anarchist, just like someone who thinks there can be a socialistic utopia with no government. I suggest YOU brush up on what the words you use mean.

    (Side note: Somalia’s standard of living has actually risen since the government was disbanded. That’s how messed up their government was…it was actively oppressing them SO MUCH that anarchy is a better alternative.)

  • I think it’s a little different. The United States went from being a third-world agricultural nation that was a former colony to a superpower, and a large part of that was due to the 1800s industrial revolution. Do you think people voluntarily moved to the cities so they could have a worse life or a better one?

    Nobody’s pretending that the 1800s were a great time to live, but without them we wouldn’t be where we are today.

  • Well, at least we agree on Ayn Rand, so there’s that.

    As for libertarian socialism, I never got what differentiated them from anarcho-socialists. I don’t see why contradictory terms make that philosophy make more sense.

  • The Sanctity of Life Act that he re-introduced in 2005 would have, had it passed, defined life as beginning at conception and left the enforcement of abortion up to the states. One can only assume rationally that this, then, is his stance.

  • He’s in favor of repealing the federal prohibition on drugs and ending the federal war on drugs. That is, in effect, a pro-legalization stance, since few states would be likely to keep them illegal (especially marijuana.) However, he’s correct in asserting that if a state wanted to pass a law banning drugs within that state, the Tenth Amendment would allow them to do that.

  • Only one provision of it. He was in favor of repealing Jim Crow laws, he was in favor of desegregating the government, and he was in favor of public school integration. The only thing he opposed was the mandate on private business prohibiting them from discriminating based on race. The majority of the Civil Rights Act was stuff he would have supported.

  • GuestZero

    Definitions aren’t the best for understanding complex political terms and philosophies.  It looks like you’ve never read a book about anarchistic political philosophy.  Anarchism is much more than the opposition of state. (note that government and state are not necessarily the same, in an anarchist society there would still be a “government” or rather a form of governace, but thats not here nor there).  I suggest reading first before making yourself look like a fool.  

  • GuestZero


  • GuestZero

    You missed my point entirely.  The ethical-ness (if I can make up such a word) of a system is not justified by how its people are living (or Standard of Living).  Just because SoL increased, this does not mean that the system is an ethical one.  Germans have a better SoL under Hitler than before (excepts for Jews of course), this is not a valid argument that this system is ethical, on the contrary it should be dismantled no matter what the SoL provides its citizens. 

  • GuestZero

    *had (not have)

  • GuestZero

    Actually its not a contradictory term. Libertarianism as defined and understood in the U.S. is rather new. Libertarianism everywhere else in the world has a different meaning, a leftist meaning, and is much older than what is known as “libertarianism” in the U.S.  In fact, U.S. Libertarianism is contradictory to what the term ACTUALLY means.  I would suggest you read up on the history of Libertarianism in Europe

  • GuestZero

    Libertarian Socialism is a broad political umbrella that has many political tendencies within it.  Usually when people mention anarcho-socialism, they mean S0cial Anarchism).  Social Anarchism would fall under the broader Libertarian Socialist umbrella.  

  • GuestZero

    I don’t go by what politicians vote for or against, because you don’t usually know the reason for or against supporting a particular bill.  However, I do go by what he states and what he says and hold his speech as what his stance on a particular issue may be.  He has stated that legalization of abortion should be left to the states.  

  • GuestZero

    Ending the FEDERAL war on drugs does not = Pro Legalization.  He has remained rather vague there, whether he supports actually legalization of drugs or not.  He has stated that the policy of the war on drugs is a states one.  There’s a lot of conjecture on your part assuming individual states wouldn’t have some policy similar to the FED one right now

  • keddaw

    You are either a liar or a monster.  Anyone who would happily allow a woman to terminate a day before the child is due is the one with skewed priorities.  Next you’ll be telling us that after birth the legal guardians (fathers and same sex partners aren’t getting out of this either) have full autonomy so can leave the child to starve to death – otherwise you’re infringing their personal liberties.

    This is quite amusing since I’m actually a libertarian.  People take on legal responsibilities at various points and being pregnant happens to be one of them.  At some point you cease to be entirely autonomous and become a care giver.  My point is that this debate appears to be polarized into people who say this duty of care begins at conception and others who say it begins at birth, my view is that it begins at some point in between.  Which is not to say I favor a woman being forced to carry a child to term at all, simply that there is a reasonable point where the child can be extracted alive and treated as a citizen, whereas any point before that abortion is the only reasonable course of action should the woman not want the child.

  • I’ve been around enough anarchist collectives to get a pretty good feel for it. Seems like nobody can quite agree on what anarchy actually is, which is precisely the problem with anarchy.

  • Yes, and as the saying goes, Mussolini made the trains run on time. If you’re going to resort to Godwin’s Law, then yeah, standard of living is terrible. But in a general sense, it’s a pretty decent metric.

  • GuestZero

    False.  Anarchism is understood well, at least by those who actually read. What differs are tactics and paths on how to construct an Anarchist society. Responses like this show me what you don’t know squat about it and just go by anecdotal evidence rather than by what is actually written about it.  If you think that the problem is anarchism is the definition then you have a lot to learn. Even genuine critiques of Anarchism understand this. 

  • Well, if that works for you, so be it. I believe actions speak louder than words, especially when it comes to politicians that change their words all the time in order to get votes.

  • Ending prohibition on a federal level would logically mean legalizing drugs at the federal level. At the state level, that may be a different issue.

    As for Paul on drugs:

  • GuestZero

    I don’t have to resort to Godwins law.  In fact my first point was making a comparison with slave society.  SoL increased substantially for slaves and owners overtime. Yet this is an awful metric to justify this economic system.  

    I’m guessing reading isn’t your strong suit

  • GuestZero

    Of course not buy what they say for political pandering or during campaigning.  If I want to know Ron Paul’s stance on an issue I would go to one of his books and read it instead of looking at his voting record, becuase that doesn’t tell me much.  

  • GuestZero

    “Ending prohibition on a federal level would logically mean legalizing drugs at the federal level.”
    No, it would not “logically” mean that at all. unless by logic you mean a definition not used in the real world.  

  • I know that Ron Paul is against the death penalty, but has he called for, supported a bill for, and voted for a federal ban on the death penalty? I can’t find one.

  •  Are you being sarcastic? Actions have to speak louder than words – I can vote all I want to violate the separation of church and state, as long as I go and claim that I am a strong advocate of the separation of church and state?

    That’s illogical.

  • GuestZero

    He’s only against the death penalty at the Federal level. He actually believes the death penalty to be a “deserving penalty” for those who deserve it, but should only be applied by the states. Though he may have recanted that position and been against it all around now

  • GuestZero

    No it’s not.  I wouldn’t consider a vote for a particular bill or amendment as an “action”, simply because the reason behind someone votes for or against something does not tell you the reasoning or logic or principle behind their vote.  For example, two people may vote the against a bill yet for two completely different reasons.  If I want to know the reasons for their votes I would go to them.

  • Yeah you’re right. Anyone who disagrees just hasn’t read the right things. Way to educate me instead of just be a dick, you’re really doing great work to spread your message.

  • Yeah you’re right, I’m actually illiterate. Every comment in this thread was read aloud to me and my responses were all dictated. Good job catching me! (And people wonder why they have a problem attracting others to marginal movements.)

    If you think there’s a comparison between slavery – the system which actually allows you to legally own a person – and the industrial revolution, I’m not sure how much of a real conversation we can have. We’re just not going to see eye to eye on that one.

  • I’m not sure what your problem is comprehending this. No prohibition at the federal level = legalizationa t the federal level, while the states have  aright to prhibit it at the state level.

  • Shumok

    You are only proving my point. What if the federal government outlaws abortion.

  • Shumok

    You are still missing the point.

    If it had been outlawed at the federal level, you would still argue against state rights if some states were seeking to allow abortion?

  • Anonymous

    True, but they don’t believe in eating Christ’s literal flesh and blood like the Catholics do. I think what people view as strange usually depends on what they grew up with and what is foreign to them.

  • Anonymous

    True, but they don’t believe in eating Christ’s literal flesh and blood like the Catholics do. I think what people view as strange usually depends on what they grew up with and what is foreign to them.

  • GuestZero

    My job isn’tto spread any message. Thisisn’ta religion. Go read a book before trying to engage in discussion so youcan actually have VALID criticisms.

  • GuestZero

    Again, missing the point ENTIRELY. Jesus, it’s like you completely miss on purpose. No one is comparing slavery to industrial revolution moron.  The argument is using SoL as a metric. Get your head out of your ass 

  • Brian Macker

     “How else can a person survive take advantage of  the Chicago political world machine?”


  • I’ll just leave this here. Watch it, and maybe we can continue after.

  • I’ll just leave this here:

  • Brian Macker

    As if the long your long string of lies about Ron Pauls positions were
    not enough to discredit you it turns out you are a social anarchist?

    Actually Libertarian Socialists are not only a oximoronically labeled but don’t give a sh*t about rights in general, any kind.    They aren’t liberties, they’re rights,  natural rights.  

    Not only do you want to move issues from the federal level, you want to move them from the state level too.   You want to in effect move them down to the level of who’s strongest.  

    Except somehow you want to ban private property.     Since you don’t want government I guess this anti-properties rights “law” is “enforced” by everyone just stealing stuff from everyone else, like a bunch of monkeys.

     Gonna be kinda hard to get an abortion when no one can own abortion tools including the government.    One of the purposes of ownership is to define who controls an object.  Without property rights or government control you are left with well … anarchy.    Which means anyone can walk up to a doctor giving an abortion and grab the instruments being used for whatever reason they please.

    This can be seen in action when these self styled social anarchists decide they have better uses for other peoples windows, like smashing them, and stores, like burning them.

  • Brian Macker

    I’ll reply for Heidi since she obviously hasn’t thought about it very deeply. 

    Taxes are not theft when they are collected to pay for activities like defense that suffer from the free rider/external risk  problem.  

    For example it is justifiable to tax pacifists because they need defense from criminals and are not willing to provide it.   Thus they endanger others by providing funding for criminals.    Sort of like the person who leaves food laying around encourages rats and the risk of disease for others.

    However taxes can be collected for other uses such are redistribution  makes them indistinguishable from theft.   


  • Brian Macker

    No but I have seen TAA’s video “Free Market Capitalism Fails”, and he’s a complete ignoramus when it comes to economics.    Since our main issues right now are economic and military I think I’ll take Ron Paul over a guy like 

  • Brian Macker

    … the “Amazing” Atheist.

  • Anonymous

    Thou shalt not kill. One can claim that commandment doesn’t apply to a fetus because it’s not ” born ” but let’s look at the Bible and see what it says… Which is more than next to nothing.

    Jeremiah 1:5

    ” Before I formed you in the womb I knew you. Before you were born, I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations. ”

    Exodus 21:22

    ” If men strive, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart from her, and yet no mischief follow: he shall be surely punished, according as the woman’s husband will lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine. ”

    God, who is supposedly the reason for all life ( Psalm 139:13-14 ), recognizes a person before they are born, and causes them to be born. Thus, killing a fetus destroys God’s work and interferes with his ” plan “. If you’re a Christian who believes in God, and take no issue of any kind with abortion then I sincerely question your loyalty, faith, and obedience to your God.

  • Anonymous

    I made a blanket statement that is easy to refute, but I’ll stand by it. I don’t think that religious people can be politicians and make secular laws that aren’t in conflict with their religion. There may be rare examples as there’s always black sheep, but I’m speaking of the majority here which is what is important.

     The fact that your brother-in-law is willing to half-assedly curb his religiosity is another topic entirely.  When he comes around to supporting secular ideas and causes then I’ll be duly impressed.

  • kaileyverse

    please. before 10 weeks (when 80-85% of women have their abortions) – it is classified as an embryo – and it doesn’t have a “brain” in any sense of the word.

  • kaileyverse

    From what I know, working in reproductive health advocacy and in women’s health clinics (and from statistics) the significant majority of women have abortions in the first tri-mester, with decreasing numbers of women obtaining abortions as the weeks go on. Some 300-600 abortions — or up to four one-hundredths of 1 percent — are performed after 26 weeks .  I would imagine that these women have some circumstances that necessitate this type of procedure so late in pregnancy.

    Severe fetal defects often are not diagnosed until late in pregnancy.
    Amniocentesis, which can be used to diagnose hundreds of these serious
    fetal conditions, may not produce results until after 20 weeks of
    gestation.  Consequently, locating a physician who will perform the
    abortion, making travel arrangements, and securing the necessary
    funds (as well as meeting any state waiting periods or requirements)  may be a time-consuming process.

  • Latinboy103

    Anarchists define “private property” (or just “property,” for short) as state-protected monopolies of certain objects or privileges which are used to control and exploit others. “Possession,” on the other hand, is ownership of things that are not used to exploit others (e.g. a car, a refrigerator, a toothbrush, etc.). Thus many things can be considered as either property or possessions depending on how they are used.To summarize, anarchists are in favor of the kind of property which “cannot be used to exploit another — those kinds of personal possessions which we accumulate from childhood and which become part of our lives.” We are opposed to the kind of property “which can be used only to exploit people — land and buildings, instruments of production and distribution, raw materials and manufactured articles, money and capital.” [Nicholas Walter, About Anarchism, p. 40] As a rule of thumb, anarchists oppose those forms of property which are owned by a few people but which are used by others. This leads to the former controlling the latter and using them to produce a surplus for them (either directly, as in the case of a employee, or indirectly, in the case of a tenant).The key is that “possession” is rooted in the concept of “use rights” or “usufruct” while “private property” is rooted in a divorce between the users and ownership. For example, a house that one lives in is a possession, whereas if one rents it to someone else at a profit it becomes property. Similarly, if one uses a saw to make a living as a self-employed carpenter, the saw is a possession; whereas if one employs others at wages to use the saw for one’s own profit, it is property. Needless to say, a capitalist workplace, where the workers are ordered about by a boss, is an example of “property” while a co-operative, where the workers manage their own work, is an example of “possession.” To quote Proudhon:”The proprietor is a man who, having absolute control of an instrument of production, claims the right to enjoy the product of the instrument without using it himself. To this end he lends it.” [Op. Cit., p. 293]While it may initially be confusing to make this distinction, it is very useful to understand the nature of capitalist society. Capitalists tend to use the word”property” to mean anything from a toothbrush to a transnational corporation — two very different things, with very different impacts upon society. Hence Proudhon:”Originally the word property was synonymous with proper or individual possession. It designated each individual’s special right to the use of a thing. But when this right of use . . . became active and paramount — that is, when the usufructuary converted his right to personally use the thing into the right to use it by his neighbour’s labour — then property changed its nature and this idea became complex.” [Op. Cit., pp. 395-6]Proudhon graphically illustrated the distinction by comparing a lover as a possessor, and a husband as a proprietor! As he stressed, the “double definition of property — domain and possession — is of highest importance; and must be clearly understood, in order to comprehend” what anarchism is really about. So while some may question why we make this distinction, the reason is clear. As Proudhon argued, “it is proper to call different things by different names, if we keep the name ‘property’ for the former [possession], we must call the latter [the domain of property] robbery, repine, brigandage. If, on the contrary, we reserve the name ‘property’ for the latter, we must designate the former by the term possession or some other equivalent; otherwise we should be troubled with an unpleasant synonym.” [Op. Cit., p. 65 and p. 373]The difference between property and possession can be seen from the types of authority relations each generates. Taking the example of a capitalist workplace, its clear that those who own the workplace determine how it is used, not those who do the actual work. This leads to an almost totalitarian system. As Noam Chomsky points out, “the term ‘totalitarian’ is quite accurate. There is no human institution that approaches totalitarianism as closely as a business corporation. I mean, power is completely top-down. You can be inside it somewhere and you take orders from above and hand ’em down. Ultimately, it’s in the hands of owners and investors.” Thus the actual producer does not control their own activity, the product of their labour nor the means of production they use. In modern class societies, the producer is in a position of subordination to those who actually do own or manage the productive process.In an anarchist society, as noted, actual use is considered the only title. This means that a workplace is organised and run by those who work within it, thus reducing hierarchy and increasing freedom and equality within society. Hence anarchist opposition to private property and capitalism flows naturally from anarchism’s basic principles and ideas. Hence all anarchists agree with Proudhon:”Possession is a right; property is against right. Suppress property while maintaining possession.” [Op. Cit., p. 271]As Alexander Berkman frames this distinction, anarchism “abolishes private ownership of the means of production and distribution, and with it goes capitalistic business. Personal possession remains only in the things you use. Thus, your watch is your own, but the watch factory belongs to the people. Land, machinery, and all other public utilities will be collective property, neither to be bought nor sold. Actual use will be considered the only title — not to ownership but to possession.” [What is Anarchism?, p. 217]This analysis of different forms of property is at the heart of both social and individualist anarchism. This means that all anarchists seek to change people’s opinions on what is to be considered as valid forms of property, aiming to see that “the Anarchistic view that occupancy and use should condition and limit landholding becomes the prevailing view” and so ensure that “individuals should no longer be protected by their fellows in anything but personal occupation and cultivation [i.e. use] of land.” [Benjamin Tucker, The Individualist Anarchists, p. 159 and p. 85] The key differences, as we noted in section A.3.1, is how they apply this principle.This anarchist support for possession does not imply the break up of large scale organisations such as factories or other workplaces which require large numbers of people to operate. Far from it. Anarchists argue for association as the complement of possession. This means applying “occupancy and use” to property which is worked by more than one person results in associated labour, i.e. those who collectively work together (i.e. use a given property) manage it and their own labour as a self-governing, directly democratic, association of equals (usually called “self-management” for short).This logically flows from the theory of possession, of “occupancy and use.” For if production is carried on in groups who is the legal occupier of the land? The employer or their manager? Obviously not, as they are by definition occupying more than they can use by themselves. Clearly, the association of those engaged in the work can be the only rational answer. Hence Proudhon’s comment that “all accumulated capital being social property, no one can be its exclusive proprietor.” “In order to destroy despotism and inequality of conditions, men must . . . become associates” and this implies workers’ self-management — “leaders, instructors, superintendents . . . must be chosen from the labourers by the labourers themselves.” [Proudhon, Op. Cit., p. 130, p. 372 and p. 137]

  • Whateverman76

    Not sure how you argue against your own argument but you did it. My hats off to you…

    I agree with you that he is not “pro” same sex marriage and believes the issue should be decided on a state or local level… However, he also feels the same way about regulations, taxes, and social safety nets.

    He believes states and localities can better serve their people because the people are more involved at a local level… And I happen to agree with this stance. I also agree that our armed forces should not be used to “spread democracy” across the world which is why I intend to vote for him. Go on call me crazy

  • Guest

    Show of hands, who likes to pay taxes? (Austin, you don’t count. We know your position)

  • Nathalie 515

    Ok. Good for you. You’re amazing.

  • So he’s against a federal death penalty but FOR federal restrictions on abortions? How is that in any way consistent?

    Paul is a social conservative, just like the rest of his party. We can dissemble all we want to cover up that fact, but it plays right into his narrative.

  • MY point is that in actual practice, the federal government is and has upheld a woman’s right to choose for decades now, while many states are doing everything they can to undermine that right.  They’re skirting as close to the line (and crossing it, in some cases) as possible WITH federal regulations in place.   These women and their medical decisions are at the mercy of their local governments, which are far more likely than the federal one to bow to a tyranny of (local) majority than uphold minority rights.  Sure, the fed’s got its issues (i.e. the war on drugs) but also have far more checks and balances in place to ensure state law is Consitutional.  Loving vs Virginia comes to mind.  Hypotheticals seem silly when we can observe what’s happening in reality.

  • BookOfDudeOrAnime

    While I do agree that many of the things in his statement of faith are quite quacky, it seems like it may be there to look attractive to the christian republican voters. He has done well with not bringing religious quackery into his discussion of policy.  I feel confident enough in his respect for civil liberties and equality, though, that I doubt he would be one to publicly perpetrate unabashed bigotry against atheists as the other republican candidates have done on a routine basis.

  • Katiewills18

    here’s alittle more knowledge for you… the bible is base on evidence, if you study it, it’s clear

  • Katiewills18

    Obama is a coward and puppet

  • Guy

    I think Paul is pro-life because of his experience as an ob-gyn, not because of his religion. Just saying.

  • Franzypantz

    Let’s be honest, you are a dumb ass, if you have a problem with the constitution move out of this great country that grew to be so powerful in the early years by men who followed the constitution as guide line to follow which was the point of our fore fathers writing the “sacred document”. They didn’t write thcould unbent so we could follow at our own discretion

error: Content is protected !!