Ron Paul: The Anti-War Candidate Who Will Start New Wars

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KURT’S NOTE: The following is a guest post from Jason Dye.  I take no responsibility for the content of this article (except for posting it on his behalf).  His piece gets at some of this issues that concern me about libertarian political philosophy.  My belief is that an unregulated market and a “small government” will lead to social Darwinism.  As Christians, we are invited to call governments to account when their actions or lack of actions lead to injustice for the most vulnerable in our society and in the world.  Read Jason’s piece and see if you begin to understand that the issues are quite complex, beyond simply being “anti-war.”

As a big-mouth anti-war person, I meet a lot of other people who are also anti-war. Some of them have a very identifiable Christian-based consciousness against all things empire-a-violence based. I count as good friends Kurt Willems, Ian Ebright,  and other Christians who are opposed to war because they believe that war opposes the person and practices of Jesus.

I also meet others who are opposed to war on principled and practical grounds, some of whom have first hand experiences of the ravages of rampant militarism and wars, which I, gratefully, do not.  Many of of these sorts of anti-war allies have recently found themselves invested in the Ron Paul story (as well as some curious Christians). I can understand their fascination with a major political candidate that is against occupational wars and is openly suggesting ceasing the costly, ineffectual, dangerous, and racist war on drugs. On these issues, I agree with Ron Paul. However, these efforts do not stand on their own, and Paul acolytes fail to see the dark side of the gynecologist’s views. I propose that while Rep. Paul wants to end very detrimental wars, he is advocating for several other annihilating wars.

War on Government Protection

While his desire to end the Dept of Ed is questionable (it needs to be overhauled, not eliminated), it’s not as dreadful as his desire to eliminate the Environmental Protection Agency.

Paul and other Free Markies trust that the Free Market would force businesses to self-regulate. However, Free Marketstry is bad faith. Business is concerned primarily with the bottom-line and needs conscionable checks against it. Consumers buy what they consider to be the biggest bang for their buck – especially when they have few bucks with which to bang. Which is why Wal-Mart, with its horrible employment practices and crappy clothes, is pulling in much more money than much more ethical companies. And why ethical and local-based companies are being run out of business.

Boycotting a product not meeting up to moral or ethical standards is not effective when those with the most to lose are those with the least amount of purchasing power. Ending the EPA would effectively and quite literally kill the most vulnerable people (the poor, who are disproportionately people of color), as they are those most in need of protection from topical erosion, poisoned water and earth, lead paint, mercury, toxins, heavy air pollutants, etc.

What of Paul’s continual and bizarre attacks on the Civil Rights Act? The nicest that can be said about that is that at least he’s honest that he’s still against the bill. In a HuffPo article:

Paul explained that while he supports the fact that the legislation repealed the notorious Jim Crow laws, which forced racial segregation, he believes it is the government, not the people, that causes racial tensions by passing overreaching laws that institutionalize slavery and segregation.

This is a core Paleo-Conservative argument (even in Mr. Paul wouldn’t see it that way). It’s always some variant of: “Racism is caused by those N####-lovers always trying to shove Black People’s equal-ness down our throats. If they would stop trying to be equal, we wouldn’t have racism!”

Or how about Paul’s continued suggestions that women frustrated by sexual harassment in the workplace should leave the work force because they’re not suited to the environment? In one of his books, he makes it clear that it is not the government’s job to get involved in such affairs. He asserted that harassed women should not bring the courts in when feeling sexually abused because of “some joke.”

I don’t know what Paul envisions government’s role to be, but it would not include protecting those most in need of protection..

War on Financial Stability of Ethnic Minorities and Women

While Rep. Paul is right to point out the errors of the War on Drugs, he doesn’t seem the least concerned about why Black and Brown folks are disproportionately identified with illicit trafficking. Paul focuses on some of the symptoms of White Supremacy without acknowledging the causes of racism.

It’s as if, when we get rid of illegal drug trafficking and decriminalize drugs, then Black men will no longer be disproportionately imprisoned and they will be welcomed into their choice of living wage jobs. But since Paul wants to remove some of the few equalizers out there – including the DOE – and since he seems interested in curtailing the Justice Department so that it doesn’t get involved in discriminatory affairs of the workplace, it is excruciatingly obvious that he thinks very little of the economic survival of those most exploited in this country. He is only FURTHER exploiting them for political purposes.

But it’s not like poor White people are going to get much of a break either. Since he favors unrestricted business, don’t expect to make a living wage at your service job (if you are fortunate to actually get and maintain a job in the US). And if you’re not making enough to put food on the table, don’t expect any monetary assistance from the government.

Or, really, any sort of assistance…

Also, since the roads are being privatized, you’re gonna have to start paying for the privilege of traveling, too.  Good luck trying to maintain those middle class buffer jobs…

War on Democracy

Democracy is more than the concept of voting for one of two or more choices. It means that all are treated as equal and each has equal access. Paul’s brand of libertarianism proposes that all rights are inherently property-based. The rights over the self begin with the acknowledgement that we are our own property and then it extends from there to whatever else we may own.

Which is nice if one has plenty of property.

Where other Republican leaders give lip service to reducing government’s involvement in the affairs of private business, RPizzle is the real gold-danged deal. His entire platform is centered on the idea of getting that old intrusive government out of the way of the Free Market hand. The Free Market, if you are not aware, is an entire religion into itself with its own priests, gods, hierarchies, sacraments, demons, theological framework, sacrifices, and mystical whimsical powers. The Hand of the Providential Free Market knows all, guides all, “frees” all.

Which is to say that the way in which businesses and financial institutions operate, when unhindered by the restrictions of governmental interference, will institute a New Morality. Wrongs will be righted. Unless they’re re-enforced, that is. And institutionalized. Corporations will have unlimited power and Joe SixPack will have little access and little say – unless he is wealthy enough to be a majority stock-holder.

This is anti-democratic. Ron Paul is advocating for an America ruled by the few for the benefit of the few.

War on the Public Welfare

The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defense and general Welfare of the United States.

Gutting and phasing out of Social Security, unemployment benefits, Medicaid, financial aid, food stamps, housing assistance…

For someone who expressly runs on the idea that he can guarantee the salvation of the Constitution of the USofA, Paul sure likes to play loose with some of the actual Constitution. I know there’s some debate about the actual “general Welfare” clause, but it doesn’t mean that roads should be privatized.

In fact, Paul argued with Fox News’ Chris Wallace that Medicare is unconstitutional and that only extreme liberals/Democrats argue otherwise, disregarding the fact that it’s regarded precedence.

Final Thought

I propose we find another anti-war candidate to get across anti-war ideas. Preferably, one who is not trying to start several other wars…

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Jason M. Dye is a passionate Christian writer who blogs at “Left Cheek” and whose Facebook page can be found here.

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  • Chuck McKnight

    Christ calls His followers to help the poor. That means that we personally give of our own time and possessions. There is no doubt that we have been sadly delinquent in this area, and we need to start actually living like the body of Christ. However, we are never told to force others to help the poor against their will. Furthermore, human government is utterly incompetent and will do an even worse job of it than the church has. We need to reform the church to live properly, not try to make the government try to make us live like we should.

    • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

      It’s not so much a question of “forcing others,” Chuck, as it is recognizing the structures of injustice in society that have led to much/most of the poverty in the first place. Since those structures need to be adjusted, if not dismantled, the government is usually the necessary mechanism. That is, until the church is faithful and effective enough in its witness that people no longer need live under those structures…

      • Chuck McKnight

        Mandatory redistribution of wealth, in any form, is forcing others.

        • http://patheos.com/blogs/thepangeablog/ Kurt Willems

          @google-f38f10e5ab87878cc3090f66881b54c7:disqus … you’ve the the governing stucture of the OT and the voices of the prophets as a countervoice.  Your assumption is rooted in Americanized individualism and not the justice seeking communial understanding of the narrative of the Scriptures.

          • Brian

            You seem to be the one who misunderstands the OT’s governing structure.  Tithes do not = taxes. Tithes were paid to the religious authority, the Levitical Priesthood, to support the necessary religious functions which included supporting widows and strangers.  They were not paid to the civil authority. If tithing were the same as taxation then God would have had no need to accuse the people of theft in Malachi 3 since the civil authority would have been enforcing the requirement to tithe.

          • Mike Ward

            There was more than one tithe.

          • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

            Brian, I believe it is you who misunderstands. You cannot divide “religious” from “civil” in biblical Israel. They would have had no conception of such a modern phenomenon. Tithing has to do with covenant and Torah, an overarching *theopolitical* system of religious, social, cultural, and political life together in community.

            And what about prohibitions against charging interest, or Sabbath years, or the year of Jubilee? A rhythm of communal life in Israel where debts were cancelled, indentured servants were freed, and land was returned?? Talk about a redistribution of wealth!

          • Brian

            No, I’m sure it is you but we will obviously disagree so arguing about who does or doesn’t understand the OT like a couple of five year olds is hardly worth our time. I would rather address your contention that a separation between civil and religious authorities is a “modern phenomenon”. It was God himself who instituted this separation by giving Moses and Aaron separate duties. Moses was the head of civil authority, being the lawgiver, chief executive, and judge. Aaron was the High Priest who led the religious authority. There are many instances in the Old Testament where the king attempted to use his power as the civil authority to usurp the power of the religious authority which always led to receiving harsh judgment from God.

            As to your claim that the sabbatical years and Jubilee were a redistribution of wealth, I have to laugh because your argument is a stretch at best. They were simply a well defined limitation on how long someone could be held liable for the payment of a debt. They prevented indefinite servitude that we would call slavery today. It is why we have bankruptcy laws based on a seven year period of time. An ancient Israelite would have understood the law and factored it into his decision to loan someone property in the first place. Being on the losing end of a bad investment is hardly redistribution of wealth.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            You just countered yourself, Brian…

          • Brian

            Making a statement such as this is hardly a counter argument. You will have to explain further if you wish for me to take you seriously.

        • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

          But that’s just the point, Chuck. What if we’re dealing with a situation where the current and potential wealth of some HAS, in fact, been redistributed over a period of time in favor of those with the power, and through various governmental means? Is reversing that somehow a more unjust or evil form of redistribution?

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            The government has handed over trillions to a bunch of criminals in the financial sector and placed the liability to pay back this borrowed money on the working people of this country.

            The government doesn’t redistribute wealth from the rich to the poor, it redistributes the money of the middle class to the rich and to the poor, mostly to the rich.

            If the government can create enough poor and dependent people, of course they will vote to continue this, and the middle class will shrink until it’s destroyed.  After that, the economy will simply implode and the social programs available to the poor will simply disappear anyhow.

      • Brian

        Much of the economic injustice that you seek to eliminate would cease to exist if Paul’s plans to rein in the Federal Reserve and return to sound money were implemented. Borrowing endless amounts of money to give to poor people only exacerbates the problem because it creates the inflation which is sucking the lifeblood from the poor and middle class to begin with. A thriving economy and middle class built on sound money is the best anti-poverty program that could ever exist. Government is not God and we should not be looking to it to provide our every need.

        • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

          Begin with reining in “defense” spending and the military industrial complex, and then we can talk about domestic programs.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/Conrad-Schweizerhof/722928651 Conrad Schweizerhof

            That is actually what Ron Paul has said Brad…

          • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

            I’m aware of that, Conrad. But note how his support tends to go first for “poor people” rather than military spending. That is what I was responding to in Brian’s comment, not Paul himself.

          • Brian

            I don’t understand your comments at all. As Conrad has stated, Paul does not cut social programs first. His plan is exactly what you describe. He intends to drastically cut military spending which has little to do with national defense. I strongly support that approach so I don’t understand your comments because they don’t relate to anything in my original comment.

        • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

          It’s actually a horrible plan that would hurt the poor. Because, as it needs to be pointed out, WE HAVE NO MONEY.

          • Brian

            What is a horrible plan? Restoring our monetary system to sound money so that prices remain stable is a bad idea? It is the poor people whose cause you claim to champion that are continuously squeezed by the debasement of our currency. You say “we have no money” (are you sure you aren’t a Paulite?) but you advocate for continued government spending on social programs. Isn’t there a cognitive disconnect there?

        • http://nailtothedoor.blogspot.com Dan Martin

          Anyone who believes any significant portion of this country’s borrowing is for “giving to the poor” is not paying attention to the proportional distribution of U.S. federal spending.  See this chart for details.

          • Brian

            I never said that a significant portion of federal spending is borrowed money given to the poor. My point is that too many people such as yourself seem to think that government programs are the answer to poverty when the reality is actually the opposite. They always do more harm than good in the long run because inflation destroys the value of our currency which affects the poor first and the most.

          • http://nailtothedoor.blogspot.com Dan Martin

            Not at all. I’m merely saying that if you’re going to solve our deficit, start with the things that will have a material effect on the deficit. The poor are not that…but they are what usually gets slashed when people start talking “fiscal responsibility.”

      • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

        Thanks, Brad. I’ve dealt with that issue as well in my blog. I’m not sure most of these arguments are worth having, as they continue to trump the same anti-Biblical, anti-loving answers in their apologizing of Ron Paul.

  • JF33

    Paul is not trying to destroy the federal government for the sake of destroying the government, what he is trying to do is get the states back to self governing, so many of the programs that you mention being abolished would still exist at the state level without the federal government interfering.  For example, for those living in the Central San Joaquin Vally of California, they are receiving a penalty from the EPA because of the amount of particulates in the air because recent tests showed that the air was unhealthy.  What the EPA doesn’t take into consideration is that the air quality in this region is not in the condition it is due to the actions of those living in the region.  This area is surrounded by three sides by tall mountains and to the northwest is the San Francisco, if you have ever watched the weather for this region you would note that nearly every weather system that rolls in comes from the northwest and makes its way to the valley.  These weather systems are great for cleaning out the bay area but all of that pollution has to go somewhere and that somewhere is the valley.  It gets trapped there.  Add to that, the last two months have gone without a drop of rain (until this weekend) and you have no way to clean the air.  So, as a result, myself and others are penalized for something we have no control over.  What Paul would do is put the power in the local governments hands to fix their own problems, not an over-sized government that does not understand the needs of the area. 

    • Brian

      Absolutely right and pretty much my first thoughts on his comments regrading the supposed “War on Protection”. These federal departments are an unnecessary second layer burden on the economy and a duplication of state agencies which already exist in every state of the union and it’s territories. His comments show a complete ignorance of the difference between federal authority and state authority as expressed in the Tenth Amendment.

  • Mike Ward

    I’ve always seen the issue of war as complex. You only seem to see it as complex now that keeping it simple would mean supporting a Republican.

  • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

    I find it amazing in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis that anyone can advocate for the primacy of the free market. It was the free market in action – morally impoverished brokers using credit-default swaps to bet that the folks their companies enthusiastically gave mortgages to wouldn’t be able to afford them in the end – that made the mess, and those at fault are largely still wealthy and in business, because there was no law to mandate otherwise.

    Given that conservatives actually don’t want smaller government – they want government whose power is directed outward, toward the “other” (hence their defense of militarism) – I resonate with the attraction of Paul’s statements/questions for US foreign policy (especially his courage in stating outright that the Gitmo detainees need fair trials), but his underlying philosophy assumes that “freedom” means freedom from restriction, especially for the private sector. Christians need a reality check: powerful corporations are no less a threat than powerful states.

    • Chuck McKnight

      It most certainly was not the free market that caused the crisis. The problem was and is government spending.

      • Mike Ward

        It seems to me that the last crisis started twih the collapse of the housing market and the next crisis we are trying to avoid is coming by way of Europe due to the insolvency of Greece.

        And in both instances the main problem seems to be lending money to people could not reasonably have been expected to pay it back.

        Am I wrong about this. I’m no economist so somebody correct me.

        • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

          You aren’t wrong, Mike. But it wasn’t only the lending, but the deliberate lending with the expectation that the loan would fail, that triggered the crisis.

          • Mike Ward

            Why would anyone do such a thing? Not disagreeing, just trying to understand.

          • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

            Because it made them a boatload of money, and they knew they could do it with legal impunity.

          • Rana

            Mike because Hedge Funds created a product that let investors bet against the people they were giving loans. There was an actual investment product that bet these loans would fail, Jeff Greene made hundreds of millions betting against the sub-prime loans. But these products were not accessible to all people, in fact Paulson (the investor not the Treasury guy) told Green he had to buy these financial products through him. Jeff Greene went directly to the banks and made his bets and won.

            You could read more about him in Forbes.

          • Mike Ward

            Jeff Greene may have made a killing betting against the loans, but the people who actually made the loans don’t benefit from not getting paid back. Why did the lenders make the loans is really my question.

      • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

        Housing bubble crashed. Didn’t you catch the news?

      • Rana

        Chuck, what state do you live in? In California the free market behind the housing crisis most certainly was the problem. I’ve been reading and researching the economic crisis for over 3 years and it points to loosening economic policies that enabled people to get drunk on credit. Back in 2008-2009 when all the Obama haters were screaming “WEALTH REDISTRIBUTION” implying that Obama was going to redistribute wealth from the rich and middle class to the poor and welfare class the only WEALTH REDISTRIBUTION that was in fact taking place while the Tea Party, et al was making noise was the Rich were getting Richer this was all in late 2008 and 2009 when the stock market crashed, fear set in -guess who made out alright, with massive increased wealth? The politicians and bankers. Oh and they only pay 15%  Capital Gains Tax thanks to Bush policies that Obama continues to support.

        Btw, I am not saying gov’t spending isn’t a problem …

    • Joe

      haha thanks for the laugh, yah so crony capitalism and fake derivatives is free-market according to you?

      • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

        In the unfettered, laissez-faire sense, certainly! That’s the problem with the negative notion of “freedom” so prized in modern politics and economics: there’s real good aimed for, just “bads” that are prevented (unless, of course, they work well for me).

        How would you define free-market?

        • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

          I should correct something: by “bads” I really just mean “restraints.” There can be no real notion of “bad” if there’s no notion of “good,” obviously.

        • Richard Turnbull

          And if you redefine “Laissez-Faire Capitalism” as complete anarchy

          with no traditional laws of contracts ,  enforcement of other remedies in the law of equitable relief, and I suppose outright
           highway robbery by armed gangs, you can “prove” what you like –
            it won’t be a cogent argument, but it might persuade idiots.

        • Richard Turnbull

           Putting another way: what part of Corrupt Crony Casino Corporate

           Capitalism don’t you see is not based on `free markets’? 

             “NINJA” loans for example — no income, no job, no problem!
               & too many examples to list — search, the internet and a 
                search engine is your friend!

           Books — traditional books — as good or better:
           
            Read  The Creature from Jekyll Island: A Second Look at the
            Federal Reserve  (5th edition, 2010) by G.  Edward Griffin —

             “This is a murder mystery about the financial `murder’ of the
                middle class.”   — Robert Kiyosaki, author of Rich Dad, Poor Dad

            “A superb analysis. Be prepared for one heck of a journey through
              time and mind.”  — Ron Paul, House Banking Committee,
               Presidential candidate

             “A gripping adventure into the secret world of the international
              banking cartel.”  — Mark Thornton, Asst. Professor of  Economics, Auburn U. 

               { I note proleptically that there is no contradiction in shining
                  a spotlight from without upon plans and policies which the
                  planners would much rather remain `secret.’]

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WQJSISIZMR6ZHHQEJTJDC5E7CY trevor


      We did not have free market . Competition benefits consumers not business and benefits the producer not the moocher.

    • http://patheos.com/blogs/thepangeablog/ Kurt Willems

      @ee53e156be00f7cf64412aac65ad5a2b:disqus … AMEN.

    • Fed-up

      Are you kidding?! You think it was the free market that bailed out the banks with failing business models. It was the corrupt congress with the assistance of the Fed. Do you understand the concept of “free” market?

      • Rana

        “the Fed” as in Federal Reserve? Isn’t that a free market entity? From my understanding the Federal Reserve is not a gov’t entity.

        • Mike Ward

          The Federal Reserve is a government entity. It was created by an act of congress and is led by presidential appointees

          • Rana

            http://www.auburn.edu/~johnspm/gloss/federal_reserve_system

            The Federal Reserve System represents an almost unique hybrid or blending of elements of governmental power with elements of private ownership and control. 
             … the Federal Reserve was set up along the lines of an independent regulatory commission — not as just one more agency of the Executive Branch …
            The private banking community was also given a major role in the running of the Federal Reserve System that continues to give banking interests privileged access to the process by which the US government’s monetary policy is made.

    • Brian

      Your statements show a complete ignorance of Paul’s position on crony capitalism. In no way, shape, or form was our economic system a free market before the crash. Government was heavily involved in the housing market and the banking system. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac provided an unspoken quasi-government backed mortage guarantee that created a moral hazard. The Federal Reserve’s status as “lender of last resort” and the FDIC’s guarantee of bank deposits backed up a Wild West of mortgage lending that would not have existed otherwise because the risk would have been too great for these banks. The concept of “too big to fail” led the Federal Reserve and federal government to prop up institutions that should have failed and gone bankrupt. Instead, the poor will suffer greatly through inflation as this burden has been transferred to them through out of control money printing and government bailouts. Please educate yourself and stop attacking free markets as being synonymous with government sanctioned crony capitalism.

      • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

        Brian, I’d ask for a bit closer reading on your part before you respond to me. I haven’t accused Paul himself of anything. As I’ve said elsewhere, my feelings are mixed on the man. I’m addressing some of the other ideology at work in this discussion, as well as behind libertarianism in general. Do I think Paul would correct some of that? Perhaps, but I’m doubtful he could do much, and I think his own discipline wrt “crony capitalism” is not representative of his following as a whole.

        • Brian

          Fair enough. You didn’t attack Paul directly but you did insinuate he was in favor of the status quo by stating “I find it amazing in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis that anyone can advocate for the primacy of the free market.” You are clearly implying that Paul’s idea of a free market is what led to the Crash of ’08. I was simply making the case that such an argument is a false representation of what Paul and other like-minded people consider to be a truly free-market. How do you separate Paul from what you consider to be “libertarianism in general” when his arguments in favor of a free market are pretty orthodox with respect to 
          “libertarianism in general”. I don’t know any libertarians that favor crony capitalism. Using the government as a vehicle for gaining an unfair advantage over your competitors is not something that 
          “libertarianism in general” advocates. The “morally impoverished brokers … that made the mess … are largely still wealthy and in business” because the government mandated they were too big to fail. This is hardly something that 
          “libertarianism in general” would advocate. So please spare me the “you misunderstood me” argument.

    • Anonymous

      Brad Anderson,
      I am an atheist and a Libertarian. I fear the power that corporations have on our government. However, I also realize how that power is used. It is utilized by protective legislation, laws and rulings written to protect corporations from free market forces. 

      For example, in Las Vegas a few years ago, they passed a law outlawing smoking in restaurants, bars, etc…. EXCEPT for large scale casinos that have huge ventilation systems. This basically forced smokers to go to the large casinos while the small mom & pop’s were forced out.  

      The big casinos had competition from casinos, restaurants, and bars outside the strip. This basically shut those up & coming businesses down.

      So, yes… I fear corporations, but I fear corporations mating with government far more.

      • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

        But what is the reply to that?

        Surely, employees had a right to breath in carcinogen-free air. The problem wasn’t the smoke-free laws, but in how they were unfairly passed. In Chicago, they phased out all smoking in businesses, including the ones with “ventilation”. Many say that this infringes upon the rights of the smoker, but I say that I and my daughter, nor working class servers, etc, should not be forced to inhale another’s toxins.

        The solution isn’t to overthrow government, but to reform it, to change it by putting pressure on it to listen to the needs of the people rather than the desires of the businesses. This is actual work, but it beats allowing businesses to do as they please.

        • Anonymous

          Mr Dye,
          I’m all for governmental reform, but do you seriously expect such reforms to happen when corporations can donate unlimited funds to political campaigns?
          Dr Paul is not the perfect candidate, but he is much better than anyone else that is offered. His track record in Congress shows that he would be willing to say “No!” to the slanted legislation that lobbyists now submit.

          Can you honestly say you would rather vote for someone who would sign an act allowing for the unlimited detention of American citizens without trial? So far, Dr Paul has been the only candidate that spoke out against it.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            To quote the great prophetess Tina Turner, “We don’t need another hero.” Although if you still want one, I’d say look at Bernie Sanders. All the good stuff, none of the baggage.

      • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

        I don’t doubt your first paragraph at all, Braaainz. I totally believe it. The problem is that the libertarian solution would simply remove the government middle-man from this process. So what’s been accomplished? The shareholders of a corporation’s capital – i.e., the ones with the power to change the company’s course – will do what they need to do to maximize that capital. Getting the government out of the situation doesn’t increase justice; it only changes the means by which the corporations accomplish their ends.

    • http://nailtothedoor.blogspot.com Dan Martin

      There is an interesting article on Warren Buffett in last week’s Time Magazine.  Buffett states he was profoundly influenced by a lesser-known speech he heard Martin Luther King deliver, in which King said “government cannot change people’s hearts, but it can restrain the heartless.”

      This is precisely what a Ron Paul-type government would fail to do.  As I suggested on Jason’s own blog when I read this article last week, the common fallacy of both Paul’s messiah Ayn Rand, and Karl Marx, is that both built their philosophy on the presumption that when you remove the oppressive force on top of people, most people will do the right thing.  We have only a few thousand years of history to suggest that in fact, people will do no such thing.

    • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

      >  I find it amazing in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis
      > that anyone can advocate for the primacy of the free market.

      Simple – in an actual free market, housing prices would have gone down, these criminal banks would have gone out of business, there were have been prosecutions for fraud which was rampant, and the people running Goldman Sachs, Lehman, JP Morgan, etc would be bankrupt and out on the street or in jail.

      Instead, because we don’t have a free market, nobody was prosecuted (nobody of consequence) the criminal financial system was saved by borrowing money against taxpayers, and these criminals still run their criminal enterprises using taxpayer money to continue fleecing the public.

      We don’t have a free market.  If we did, these people would be out of business and likely in jail.

      Notice Jon Corzine isn’t in jail, notice he’s not discussed.  What happened to Franklin Raines that cooked the books of Fannie Mae for 3 years?  He walked away with 1/2 billion dollars and in was forced to give up his worthless FNM stock options.  Angelo Mozilo lied on television about the material soundness of Country Wide, that’s corporate malfeasance and is also actionable.  Dick Fuld did the same thing.

      What you need to realize is that government isn’t standing between us and the criminality in the financial system, they are aiding and abetting it and add to that, it’s UNCONSTITUTIONAL.  They have no legal right to do this.

      We don’t have a free market.  In our financial sector we have what is called corporatism – it’s the economic system of fascism.

  • http://daviddflowers.com/ David D. Flowers

    I’m familiar with Ron Paul’s views, and I don’t believe he has been well represented in this post. There is really too much to say here in the comment section, but I *will* say that the author should quote and reference Paul’s works (and in context), not articles or videos attacking his views. As Christians, we should be sensitive to this sort of thing. 

    So, not only do I think this article works off a flawed (at least highly contested and debatable) presupposition of the role of government, but it’s not convincing since it doesn’t directly engage Paul’s ideas–let Paul’s own voice be heard for the audience to decide if he is promoting “Social Darwinism.” (Those sort of comments aren’t fair, as Paul has clearly expressed his faith in Christ, not just given lip service while having extra-marital affairs and participated in the greed of the American empire.) Ron Paul is an extremely intelligent and consistent voice of human liberty, and a faithful Christian who believes it’s better for the church to operate in a free society that emphasizes personal responsibility. 

    These issues are just as much theological as they are political. How ought God’s world to function when aligned with the kingdom of God? Does it look like top-down control, crony capitalism, interventionism, and forced redistribution of commodities? I do think a person’s theology determines their thoughts politically. Let’s stop accusing honorable folks with alarmist rhetoric that they are communists, socialists, or darwinists. This language can distract us from first hearing the one we are attacking. 

    While I don’t agree with all of Paul’s views (e.g. Just War), he is a true political prophet who should not be ignored. It’s not the role of the church to command the state or to sort out all of its problems, but to speak truth to power and live out an entirely different community of God on the earth–revealing Christ’s way of confronting all forms of evil. 

    • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

      David, I’ve appreciated Ron Paul in a number of these areas. But since you’re pushing back on theology, let’s address your concept of “human liberty” or “free.” What do you mean by that, how should it be structured, what role should the government have in relation to it, and how would you justify all of the above theologically?

      • Anonymous

        The beginning of the end for Old Testament Israel was when the people  demanded a king to rule over them instead of being stewards of God’s kingdom themselves.  The federal government was designed to unite the states and protect them from each other and outside threats.  The more power the federal government usurps from the states, the more corrupt, divisive, and unaccountable it is is likely to become. 

        I live in Iowa.  A scandal erupted a few years ago when administrators of a public jobs placement agency were found to be giving themselves outrageous compensation and benefits.  It cost the state hundreds of thousands of dollars.  Compare that to the 17.3 BILLION dollar “inconsistency” the Department of Defense found with the US Treasury in 2001, before the War on Terrorism even began.  That is one year, from one department, in a massive federal bureaucracy that can’t account for TRILLIONS of dollars it has allocated over the past several years, despite frequent audits. 

        Freedom requires accountability, and states are much more democratic and accountable to their citizenry than the federal government could ever hope to be.

        • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

          Well, as I’ve pointed out in other comments here, the pivotal point was not choosing a king vs. self-government, but rather choosing a human king over Yahweh as king, the latter which entailed a covenant social order animated by Torah (including pretty radical political AND economic egalitarianism). This was not self-government or classical liberalism in any way, shape, or form. That is an anachronistic reading of the text.

          While I generally support devolution of power, I am not at all convinced that American states are accountable to their citizens in any robust way that is categorically different than at a national level. And if more of the power is transferred to the state level, I think we’d find the unwanted influences we’re so concerned about transferring accordingly.

        • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

          I’m not sure why anyone would want to point out how giving more power to the states makes them more accountable. Because it’s not actualy true – even at the county and municiple levels it’s not true. It sounds right, but it’s never really been the case, because municiple centralized power is still centralized power.

          Present day Chicago, Birmingham, Little Rock…

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Conrad-Schweizerhof/722928651 Conrad Schweizerhof

    Again…  This is another case of me wishing that “anti-empire” people actually have any idea whatsoever of how our empire actually works, it gets tiring listening people who argue against the empire siding WITH it on issues…

  • http://www.facebook.com/lampehome Eric Lampe

    I support Ron Paul for President because I don’t want the government to be God. I just want it to preserve our liberty to do God’s work.

    • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

      You don’t need American-style “liberty” to do God’s work. The Holy Spirit is sufficient.

      • Mike Ward

        Then what difference does it make what kind of government we have or who is president?

        • Rana

          just my 2 cents but I think if we had “good  and benevolent leaders/ people” it doesn’t matter what kind of system we have theoretically, our leaders would be seeking the best for each other. fact is that is NOT reality so we need a system that offers checks and balances, limitations and regulations.

          unfortunately the media/ big money has figured out that an engaged, thinking population/ democracy will not work in their favor so they’ve financed and entertained us to our own destruction/ distraction, have made politics a filthy, dirty enterprise that many decent people prefer to stay out of.

        • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

          Mike, clearly some systems – but more likely, some specific governments at specific moments – are more or less just than others. It may, then, be worthwhile to engage in dialogue and action for certain developments in governance and policy. But we don’t do this because we, the church, think we need it to accomplish the demands of the gospel. There is no system of government that can keep the church from being faithful; only the church can do that to itself, and it’s usually through some form of idolatry.

          • Mike Ward

            But Eric didn’t say we needed the American government to make it possible for the church to be faithful. He said, “I just want it to preserve our liberty to do God’s work.” Underder some governments the ability of Christian’s to do God’s work is greatly limited. If you don’t believe that, move to Iraq where the Christian population is on its way to zero.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            No thanks to American Christians, *sigh*

      • http://www.facebook.com/lampehome Eric Lampe

        You’ll get no argument from me, Brad on the sufficiency of the Holy Spirit. Nor will I defend “American-style liberty. I learned about it in high school civics class and I’ve read about it in nationalist propaganda, but I’ve never seen it. I did say that I wanted our government to preserve liberty but I have no real expectation that it ever will. I agree with Greg Boyd that our government is a kingdom of this world and as such will never become the Kingdom of God. And, I agree with N. T. Wright that the King has come and  that He is now setting things right. A democratic republic like the United States is a particularly seductive worldly kingdom because it creates the illusion that we have the power to influence our government’s actions. We Christians, because we long for the justice and righteousness of God’s Kingdom, often succumb to this seduction. Many Christians busy themselves seeking legislation that will control the behavior of those who don’t share our values, mistaking that for righteousness. Others lobby the (we really should insert the word “secular” here) government to right all of our society’s wrongs, forgetting that God receives no glory for this even if they do accomplish it in some small way. Every election year Christian voters are courted by power-seeking politicians who promise to champion the causes of righteousness and justice and after every election the voters are left disappointed.  This has been going on my entire life. I see something in Ron Paul that I have never seen before and find refreshing. He cuts through the illusion and tells us that we expect too much of our government – that it can’t right every wrong or meet every need because its not supposed to. This message rings true to me and it puzzles me that more Christians do not receive it. We continue to pray for God’s Kingdom to come and at the same we look to another kingdom to save us. What is the definition of insanity?

  • http://twitter.com/OMaolathair Joshua Von Einstein

    You either care that our wars of election have killed and maimed hundreds of thousands of brown people, including women and children, or you don’t.

    You either think the Constitution limits and delineates government power, or you don’t.

    You either think individuals have a right to use their property as they like, or you don’t.

    While I disagree with what much of Paul has to say regarding government programs, right now we need staunch defense of individual liberty, not feel good rhetoric about why using government to compel and appropriate from others justifies a limitless police state.

    Don’t make ‘the perfect’ the enemy of the good.

    RP is far and away the best candidate for stopping war and upholding the Constitution.

    • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

      1) I care. I care deeply.

      2) I’m not so sure what powers it delineates. You may be sure, but the Constitution is a) flawed and b) expressly open to differing opinions. It’s not Holy Script, unmutable and static from age to age.

      3) I don’t. Your rights end where my face begins.

  • Brian

    Did it ever occur to you that maybe the illicit drug traffickers are just smart enough to see that engaging in free enterprise is much better than a J-O-B? There is good reason to believe that drug pushers pop up not because they can’t find a job but because it pays much better than flipping burgers. Perhaps drug decriminalization and government deregulation would allow them the opportunity to create a legitimate business minus the crime.

    • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

      Actually, they’d make the same amount of money, most of them… Drug pushing, btw, is actual hard work. And dangerous. That’s why it’s called “hustling.”

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Clyde-Macc/100000209910590 Clyde Macc

    you have no clue as to what you are talking about.. you are the type of person who would tell me “Ron Paul wants to end students loans” “Ron Paul hates healthcare” “Ron Paul wants to End the Fed”  not in the first 4 years … there is plenty of Bueacracy left after eleminating the DOE .. every state has a school board you know.. so the DOE is just a Trickle Down Econmoic Dinosaur .

    • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

      Are you suggesting that Paul would give us a full four years before the End Of Days?

  • Matt J.

    First of all, this headline takes the fallacy of equivocation to the extreme. Foreign wars murdering 100′s of 1000′s = metaphorical “wars” against socialistic government programs? Spare me. If this author really wants to make those two things equal he has absolutely no credibility, especially as an anti-war guy. He ought to be ashamed.

    Second, if he believes that the government protects the little guy he needs to learn economics. The “war on protection” Ron Paul is fighting is against the government’s use of monopoly granting powers to protect uncompetitive businesses and industries, allowing them to become big, rich, and exploitative (see the Banking Crisis of 2008). Why do you love big business protection so much, Kurt?

    The so-called “war on public-welfare” is against the government inflating and spending the currency on distributionist programs (along with unnecessary wars) that destroy the value of the dollar and cause rising prices on the poor and those with fixed incomes while destroying their savings. Why do you hate the poor so much, Kurt?

    As for the financial stability of women and minorities, see above about inflation and devastating economic intervention that caused the economic crisis. It wasn’t an unregulated market that existed during all of that, but one of the most regulated markets in the world (i.e. the financial sector). I dare you to tell me with a straight face that is wasn’t. Look to the drug war (a real war, Kurt, not a metaphorical one) that created one of the most unstable environments for minorities and single-mothers of all time. Why do you want SWAT kicking down doors in minority neighborhoods, Kurt? Do you have a heart at all?

    Regarding Ron Paul’s so-called “war on democracy”, I hate to break it to you Kurt but property rights are civil rights. If you don’t have one, you don’t have the other. If you really want to make a difference for the fatherless and the widow, stop arguing for the government to keep exercising its power to benefit elites in society while claiming their programs help the poor and downtrodden.

    Third, this author is a writer for Sojourners which is headed up by Jim
    Wallis, Obama’s foul-mouthed, progressive, spiritual advisor in the area
    of wealth redistribution. This is coming from a full leftist position,
    not a traditional Christian perspective. Kurt, I’m sorry your parents took you to a Christian mega-church when you were a kid and you hated it, but that’s no excuse to not study biblical or practical theology or to pretend you know anything about economics.

    • http://patheos.com/blogs/thepangeablog/ Kurt Willems

      This comment @46488c17c1d27e75acfb4ded8b900ee2:disqus … might be the most presumptuous and hateful comment I’ve received in some time.  PS – I didn’t write this piece… a guest author did.

      • Mike Ward

        How is it hateful. He disagrees strongly with someone so he writes bluntly about it on the internet. Don’t you do the same?

        • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

          What’s the alternative to electing somebody like Paul?

          Bankrupt the nation?  Today the government brings in less than 16% of the national debt, 14% if you include the liability of Social Security.  In 1980, Paul Volker raised interest rates to 18% for two quarters to halt the rise of gold and to prevent the collapse of the dollar.

          A similar interest rate today for 2 quarters would consume more than 50% of the tax revenue for a year.

          When Volker raised interest rates to 18%, the federal income was 55% of the national debt.  We don’t have that option today.

          So if we continue all these wars, continue all these social programs, continue expanding the role of the government, what is the outcome?  It doesn’t take a smart person to realize that there is no easy solution to this.  We have to cut Federal government DRASTICALLY and that requires across the board cuts in both social programs and military expenditures.  Most Federal programs are redundant, like the Department of Education, and not only redundant, but useless.  I have 5 teachers in my family spanning 8 decades.  I know education hasn’t improved since the Federal government has gotten involved.

          Paul is giving a practical solution – allow deflation to happen in this nation.  If that doesn’t happen, it’s a hyperinflation at some point.  People will go broke anyhow, government programs will cease anyhow, our wars will stop anyhow.  That is the course we are clearly on.  If you graph federal income as a percentage of national debt, it’s BLATANTLY obvious that’s our path.  In fact, click my name, and you’ll see this to be true.  I’ve graphed it.

          Everything has been put in place to handle a collapse through force.  The Patriot Act, the NDAA, warrantless wiretapping – this will all be directed at citizens when the proverbial manure hits the fan.  Paul recognizes this but doesn’t talk about it other than on the periphery.

          We are headed straight into a police state, and it’s obvious we are.  The government isn’t going to give up it’s power in any situation, it’s simply too lucrative.  Instead, they will bankrupt the nation, and do away with civil rights, and then eventually it will collapse anyhow after a few decades o misery for most people in this country.

          That’s what this election is about.  Not about cutting social programs, it’s about ensuring that we don’t end up in some sort of totalitarianism.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            You are aware that there is an NDAA in every budget that Congress passes, aren’t you?

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            When did any other NDAA allow for the indefinite detention of US citizens? This isn’t the same NDAA of 5 years ago.

            You do realize this is what the ACLU is complaining about, right?

            If there isn’t any intention to detain US citizens without charge or trial, Ron Paul’s bill to make that clear should sail right into law – but it won’t. It will blocked. It won’t be made into law.

            I am always amazed at how people like you want to shoot not only yourself in the head, but everybody else, because you just won’t accept what a group of criminals run the nation today. Instead, you reflexively defend everything like a trained monkey, which in truth, is exactly what you are. You don’t even think, you just blindly defend everything because you trust this system.

            Take out the ambiguity out of the bill, do you have anything against that? I’ll tell you this, CONGRESS will. Why do you think that is, you stupid trained pig?

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            You one funny monkey.

            Ron Paul is not the messiah. The damage has been done and it will take a lot more than electing him president to fix it.

            You Paul supporters are too one dimensional to understand that it takes effort on the part of all three branches to fix this stuff. One election isn’t going to bring this to a halt.

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            >  Ron Paul is not the messiah.

            Who claimed he was?

            He’s an honest man, that choses to tell your the truth as he sees it rather than blowing smoke your rectum, and you despise him for it.

            > You Paul supporters are too one
            > dimensional to understand that
            > it takes effort on the part of all
            > three branches to fix this stuff.

            All it takes is a veto.

            Even then it can be over-ridden but then the president has the bully pulpit to disclose to the public why he vetoed it.

            Obama wouldn’t veto it, the Supreme Court won’t allow it to be ruled on citing standing, and Congress is too busy engaging in insider trading to care.  It’s not like they write the bills, they just rubber stamp them.  When the Patriot Act Law came before congress the first time, it was over 200 pages long, and it was introduced to congress 1 hour before it was signed into law.  Nobody who signed it read it.  Nobody.

            That’s your government today and like a dope, you support it 100%.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            All it takes is a veto? You don’t recognize that this whole thing has taken years to happen do you? You can’t veto a law. Your answer, like your thinking is too simplistic.

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            > All it takes is a veto? You
            > don’t recognize that this
            > whole thing has taken years
            > to happen do you? You can’t
            > veto a law.

            First, a new NDAA is signed every year.

            Second you can’t veto a law, but you can veto a bill. The NDAA was a bill before it was a law. Obama didn’t veto it, he signed it into law. He could have vetoed it, sent it back to congress and said “I vetoes this bill because it has language in it which I think might allow US citizens to be detained indefinitely without charge or trial – put in clarification to make it clear that that particular event will never happen.”

            But he didn’t. Paul would have vetoed it and done exactly that and if there was a legislative over-ride with a 2/3rd majority, he would have taken it next to the bully pulpit and explained what congress just did.

            > Your answer, like your thinking
            > is too simplistic.

            So you say.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            “First, a new NDAA is signed every year.”

            DUH! I said that at least two times to you.

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            But it doesn’t have to be.

            There is no expiration dates on the NDAA bills.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            So what?

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            So – why do you keep pointing out that a new NDAA is signed every year? You’ve done this several times. Why are you doing this?

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            Seems to irritate you, and that is reason enough.

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            So. No logical reason. What a surprise.

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            Oh gee whiz, I see you are no longer following me around on disqus – why is that? It’s useful to have somebody who doesn’t know what they are talking about repeating mindless party jingoism so I can explain what a load of crap it is.

            You suddenly aren’t following me around anymore and stalking me. Gee, why is that? Have you finally realized you’re wrong, and now you’re not man enough to admit it?

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            It works for me – you need to be irritated as much as I need to irritate you.

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            I’m just curious if it’s possible for me to break your conditioning.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            Exercising your futility again I see.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            Exercising your futility again I see.

          • SoThere

            NO, don’t tell me Dood. You mean Ron Paul isn’t the Savior????? Now I’m really depressed.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            Aw crap! It hurt my feelings when I discovered it too. I guess we will have to find someone else to lionize.

            Damn.

          • Southernfink

            Just wondering.
            Who then do you think would be best as the next POTUS.
             
            Who has the ideals and morals that identify with your beliefs.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            Personally it is too early to make such a determination, especially considering all the liberal interference with the GOP. I can tell you three people it will not be –
            Newt, Paul, and Obama.

          • Southernfink

            Good to know you have not yet ruled out the greens.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            I like greens with a little bacon for flavoring.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            You are a drama queen, and a poser.

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            Grow up.

            If there will NEVER be ANY plans at all to detain US citizens indefinitely without trial, without evidence, why is it in the NDAA that was just signed into law?

            If if was a SIMPLE OVERSIGHT, why won’t Ron Paul’s bill to clarify this not get passed. You think it will be passed?

            You can call me names and whatever, but you simply won’t address any sort of logic at all because you have none. Stalin called you useful idiots, I view you simply as dumb conspirators. It can effect you as well, but you’re LOYAL no matter what this stupid government does or how it wastes your money.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            The NDAA gets approved every year to fund the defense of the country.

            Obama didn’t veto it because he wanted those riders attached to increase the power of the executive branch. You sir, are the useful idiot here, not I. I never stated that I was in favor of those provisions, but you live in the black and white universe where if you are not for something you are against it.

            I don’t approve of the unconstitutional riders of the NDAA, but just how do you think you can stop it after it has become law? The ACLU is not going to get it repealed – that is Congress’ purview.

            Until there is conservative control of the Congress AND a sane person in the White House there will never be a solution to the problem.

            Ron is not the man for the job. I don’t expect you to agree, but if you did your research and read all there is about him you still won’t have a clue as to who you are talking about.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            Although I agree with your analysis of the ndaa, I take issue with your suggestion that “conservative control of the Congress” and a “sane person in the WH” are what’s needed to overturn it. Considering that a conservative congress AND WH gave us the Patriot Act in the first place…

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            I think you may be objecting to the word conservative, whereas the concept of it is what I was talking about.

            It does not equate to any particular party, but an attitude of conserving the  treasury by not overspending, as opposed to what has been happening for years.

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            > Obama didn’t veto it
            > because he wanted those
            > riders attached to
            > increase the power of
            > the executive branch.

            AHAHA! You finally figured it out! I’m amazed, for the first time ever I’ve seen you actually figure something out.

            There is no expiration date on NDAA bills, none. If Obama vetoed it, the old one would have still been in force but he didn’t veto it.

            It was overwhelmingly approved by the Republicans in congress.

            Romney said he would have signed it, Gingrich expressed support for it. So who is your only choice not to strip away your 6th amendment rights?

            Come on dummy. THINK. I know it hurts, think..

            One presidential candidate voted against it. Who was that dummy? Can you think?

            I mean, I’m assuming you care about your right to a trial when you’re accused of a crime. Probably, you don’t.

            > Ron is not the man
            > for the job.

            HAHAHAHA.

            Well then, WHO IS? Romney wouldn’t have vetoed it. You think Gingrich would have? There’s only one person running who would have vetoed it.

            But you have different metrics for who you elect. He’s got to have nice hair and blow smoke up your butt and make promises he’ll never attempt to keep, and spout off empty rhetoric about why the Democrats are so bad, and why the Republican party is so good.

            If you want to keep the Republican party in EXISTENCE you have one choice. There’s enough of us to destroy it at this point, and if Paul and people like him are not placed into power, we’ll rip it apart over time.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            I had figured out quite a bit about Obama before the NDAA came up, as a matter of fact my sense of smell told me all about Obama in 2008.

            The rest of your post is either ridiculous or just plain dull witted. I don’t feel obligated to reply to that.

            I do sense a bit of a threat in your tone. IS that what you are doing? Uttering a threat to destroy an entire party?

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            “I had figured out quite a bit about Obama before the NDAA came up, as a matter of fact my sense of smell told me all about Obama in 2008.”

            Really? Because McCain not only signed that bill, he defended it on the floor.

            That was your alternative as president.

            When will you realize you are never given an alternative? The first one you’ve had is Paul. He’s an actual alternative to what we have.

            If Obama is re-elected, or Romney, or Perry, or Gingrich, or Santorum – it’s all the same. They are the same. When will you realize this? They do the same thing.

            You call Obama a rat – he’s not any different that George W. Bush. He does the same thing. When will you realize you’re not being given any choice except for what kind of hairstyle and suit somebody wears. They do the same thing once in office.

            The only person that won’t, is Paul. Why do you think the Democratic AND Republican establishment is attacking him? Is the Democratic establishment attacking any other Republican candidate?

            Think. I’m serious, try to think. You are not being given a choice. You think Paul is crazy – well look at who you are listening to – a bunch of people that lied us into the Iraq War, a bunch of people that bailed out Goldman Sachs and AIG, a bunch of criminals that are lying to you about Iran.

            When will you realize who is credible and who isn’t? Stop trusting them. They have proven that they can’t be trusted. When will you realize this? When?

            If Paul doesn’t get the Republican nomination, it doesn’t matter one bit who is elected to the presidency. Whoever is running against Obama will be JUST LIKE HIM.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            Quite verbose for saying absolutely nothing meaningful. Perhaps you should dial back the caffeine. I have stopped reading your nonsense. You are nothing but a Ron Paul shill.
            Buh-bye!

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            “Quite verbose for saying absolutely nothing meaningful.”

            What? You said Obama “stunk” because he signed the NDAA – and it’s not meaningful when I point out that McCain, the other potential president, also signed the NDAA?

            I really am trying to get you to think. It’s at least theoretically possible for you to do it.

            It’s blatantly obvious you’re not being given a choice for what is done in the executive branch. Paul is your FIRST choice you’ve ever been given. Why do you have such vitriol toward him? Why do you think the media does? He’s a real threat to all the criminality and corruption in our government and financial system.

            You are so incredibly brainwashed and I’m not just saying that, you really are. Do you really think it’s such a terrible thing NOT to engage in nation building all over the world now? That was the standard party platform just 20 years ago. Do you really think that the US being in wars all over the world prevents some group of Iranians or Iraqis from boarding a plane in Saudi Arabia and coming to the US to carry out a terror attack?

            All you want to do is try to piss me off. I want to get you think. When I make a point “oh, that was just a bunch of blather” is always your response. Isn’t it weird you’re so obsessed with attacking ME, but you’re entirely incapable of addressing what I’ve said. You’re brainwashed. You cannot change your position, but you’re so obsessed with keeping it, you follow me around attacking my position. Do you know why that is?

            “Buh-bye!”

            And you run away again. This is the 3rd time I’ve directly confronted you, and then suddenly you have to go.

            I am telling you, you really are literally brainwashed.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            Nothing sudden to do with it. You simply aren’t worth my time.

            Talk about brainwashed – that is what you communists specialize in.

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            First of all, it’s not only communists that engage in brainwashing, it’s fascists too – and they are blatant about it. “We have to fight them over there so they won’t fight us here” – as if our wars prevent a dozen people from boarding a plane in Saudi Arabia to come to the US to create havoc. It’s such a silly argument on the face of it, but people like you BELIEVE it.

            And I’m not a communist. At the FEDERAL LEVEL ONLY, I’m CLOSEST to being a Libertarian. At the state and local level, it depends. Some systems work in some environments. In Israel a Kibbutz is nothing more than a communist commune, it works in small groups but not large ones.

            I really want to know if I can break your conditioning, or if you’re always going to believe the claptrap “Day h8 us 4 R Freedumb” – that was a short simple and memorable quote, specifically designed so you could remember it. It’s pleasing to think it’s that simple, it easily divides it up into “us” versus “them” and you don’t have to do any thinking about such complex things as “foreign policy”.

            It’s designed to prevent you from questioning why and it works very well on people like you.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            Exercising your futility again I see.

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            HAHAHAHA.

            You wrote that over a dozen times in response to me, mudplanet, lee, and poyani on 3 different articles.

            What DO YOU do for a living? Is your job just to ENFORCE the propaganda? HAHA. Is that you do for “work”? HAHAHA.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            Exercising your futility again I see.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            Exercising your futility again I see.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            Exercising your futility again I see.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            Exercising your futility again I see.

          • http://www.google.com Doodaddio

            Exercising your futility again I see.

      • Matt J.

        It’s a reductio, Kurt. If you want to post an article full of shallow arguments that utterly distort Ron Paul’s views in order to try and guilt garden-variety Christians and anti-war types to distance themselves from him, I can do the same.

        • Matt J.

          You’re also doing that thing that “emergents” love to do: drop a bold, caustic challenge that casts aspersions on everyone you don’t agree with and then shrink away as soon as the challenge is answered, claiming moral high ground.

          • Mike Ward

            Whether or not Kurt is doing this now, this is true of way too many “emergents”. I’d say it’s true of way t0o many right-wing fundamentalists too, but that doesn’t change the fact.

      • Mike Ward

        Kurt, I’m reading your note at the beginning of the article. While you don’t clearly endorse Jason’s article, your note is more than the typical, “these views do not necessarily reflect my views” disclaimer. It comes across as kind of a “soft” endorsement. One that allows you to promote Jason’s views while technically creating just enough distance from the article that you can say honestly that they are not your views. But aren’t your views very similar? Don’t you beleive that a progressive pro-war canidate is the lesser evil than an anti-war canidate like Paul?

        • Matt J.

          Here’s Kurt’s Facebook post on this article. He clearly endorses it:

          “My
          homeboy Jason Dye brings it in this post. He questions whether Ron
          Paul libertarian is the best option for Christians, even if we love his
          anti occupational war perspective.”

          Kurt, why don’t you put that at the top of the page? Clearly, you didn’t want to telegraph your support for this article like you did for your Facebook buddies nor the fact that Emergents are progressives that attack historical Christianity incessantly in their writings. Knowing the beef you have with historical Christianity you still claim to write and post guest posts as “one of them” in order to appeal to them.

          • Mike Ward

            Matt, That’s not a clear endorsement. I see where you are coming from, and it look like Kurt is trying to promote the message of Jason’s article without taking ownership of it, but I’d like to hear his response. I think you are over reaching.

          • Matt J.

            Mike, I understand you’re trying to be fair but I think that when he says that his “homeboy” “brings it”, that’s an enthusiastic endorsement.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            Why don’t you address your concerns to the homeboy, dawg?

            And, ftr, I grew up in a very small, multicultural, inner city “Bible” church. Thanks for the character assassination, though.

            I grew up working class poor, live amongst the poor and minorities in the most “lethal” neighborhood in Chicago now, and have needed food stamps under both the Bush ( & II) and Reagan administrations. I wouldn’t have finished school were it not for the Dept of Ed’s loans, and my daughter would be dead if not for Medicaid for children.

            Thanks, though, for your replies. I’m sure it shames any Ron Paul follower with a heart.

          • Matt J.

            “Government is good at one thing: It knows how to break your legs, hand
            you a crutch, and say, “See, if it weren’t for the government, you
            wouldn’t be able to walk.”
            –Harry Browne

            There’s a fuller reply to your other comment below.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            How is Harry Browne. And why should I care? Seriously. I’m neither pro- nor anti-government, so using that quote is ridiculous. I believe we need better government, not less nor more necessarily.

            However, that argument also would work for Merck and any number of multinationals. In fact, better for the multinationals. Since they like to rape the resources of the world and then sell them back to us at jacked-up prices.

          • http://patheos.com/blogs/thepangeablog/ Kurt Willems

            He does “bring it.” and I don’t endorse every nuance of most my guest articles. I may have crafted a thought or sentence differently here or there…. That’s why. In the intro I’m pretty clear that I fully endorse the vision of the article, citing my concern w social Darwinism. Matt J, to disagree is fine… But to attack character because u disagree w a political view is unChristlike. I know nothing of ur religious views but the way you’ve conducted yourself was certainly not how one ought to treat fellow Christians. Blogging is for discussion, not to write hateful comments. Grace and peace.

    • Matt J.

      Before you correct me by saying it’s Jason’s post and not yours, you posted it, you agree with it, and Jason is a self-described “leftist, urban slactivist [sic] Evangelical Christian”. The only alteration I would make to my comment would be to put “Jason and Kurt” in place of “Kurt”.

    • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

      The “war on protection” Ron Paul is fighting is against the government’s
      use of monopoly granting powers to protect uncompetitive businesses and
      industries,

      Funny in that you’ve somehow managed to critique the piece without actually reading it. EPA? Social Security? Civil Rights Act? FDA? Didn’t know these were about “uncompetitive businesses”…

      • Matt J.

        Jason, I’ll sum up your ideology with a quote:

        “Socialism, like the old policy from which it emanates, confounds
        Government and society. And so, every time we object to a thing being
        done by Government, it concludes that we object to its being done at
        all. We disapprove of education by the State — then we are against
        education altogether. We object to a State religion — then we would have
        no religion at all. We object to an equality which is brought about by
        the State then we are against equality, etc., etc. They might as well
        accuse us of wishing men not to eat, because we object to the
        cultivation of corn by the State.” —Frederic Bastiat, The Law

        Don’t forget that “Thou shalt not steal” applies to government as well. If I steal your property, I can’t excuse it by saying I’ll put it to good use for the public good (whether I actually do or not is another issue but considering how possession is 9/10th’s of the law…). If I get a bunch of people together to vote to steal your property, it doesn’t make it any better.

        I don’t know what kind of angels you think are running government but they are the bullies and the exploiters, colluding with businesses seeking an advantage by lobbying Congress and regulatory agencies set up to provide a political monopoly over industry and the economy. That’s where your gross inequalities are coming from. It’s called corporatism, not the free market.

        Government’s only job should be to protect life and property, not to guarantee equal outcomes (which they’ve never done a good job at). Your inequalities and lack of protections come with government agency approval, whether you’re talking about environmental protection (the Pentagon and the DoD are by far the worst polluters in this country) or consumer protection (the FDA hardly has a pristine record of protecting people from dangerous substances or green-lighting beneficial drugs without a robust lobbying effort and tens of thousands in application fees, etc.). Need I remind you all the regulatory agencies thought our financial industry was just super in 2008?

        With regard to the Civil Rights act. Property rights are civil rights. Should the black business owner be forced to serve white KKK members in his establishment? According to you, they must. Let’s not forget that the Civil Rights act was a response to the government’s own Jim Crow Laws. Why wouldn’t the government allow private individuals to desegregate if they wanted to between 1879—1965? Who’s the real bad guy here?

        Finally, with regard to Social Security, Medicaid, individual mandate, etc., have you seen the unfunded liabilities associated with this? You can’t even contemplate the debt that represents. It makes our disaster of a national debt look like a walk in the park. The government’s big idea for supporting it in perpetuity is the suicidal inflation bent it’s on. Tell me, what good is getting a social security check when it doesn’t buy anything anymore? Some compassion. Our only hope is to fund it for the generations that have no back up plan while phasing it out. We can fund the transition with cuts to overseas and military spending. Ron Paul is your man for that. Your friend Obama would rather bomb Libya and add a new wing to Guantanamo Bay with his new indefinite detention powers.

        You can continue to put your faith in the sociopaths in government who continue to carry on their relationship with the sociopaths demanding corporate welfare at the expense of the poor and the middle-class if you want, but don’t pretend to be for the little guy by attacking the only candidate who wants to cripple the real bullies in our society. Social justice is restoring liberty, not protecting a bureaucracy that does nothing more than gorge itself and its friends on stolen goods while pouring honey in your ear about it all being for “the public good”.

        • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

          I can use a much shorter quote to sum up my increasingly anti-capitalist feelings on the matter:
          *La propriété, c’est le vol!

          *There is more, however:
          Don’t speak to me about your religion; first show it to me in how you treat other people. Don’t tell me how much you love your God; show me in how much you love all His children. Don’t preach to me your passion for your faith; teach me through your compassion for your neighbors. In the end, I’m not as interested in what you have to tell or sell as I am in how you choose to live and give.
          - Cory Booker

          or,
          Poverty is the worst form of violence.
          - Gandhi

          or,
          History is the long and tragic story of the fact that privileged groups seldom give up their privileges voluntarily.
          - Martin Luther King, Jr.

          A true revolution of values will soon cause us to question the fairness and justice of many of our past and present policies… We are called to play
          the good Samaritan on life’s roadside; but that will be only an initial
          act… We must come to see that the whole Jericho road must be transformed
          so that men and women will not be constantly beaten and robbed as they make
          their journey on life’s highway. -
          True compassion is more than flinging a coin to a beggar; it is not
          haphazard and superficial. It comes to see that an edifice which produces
          beggars needs restructuring. A true revolution of values will soon look
          uneasily on the glaring contrast of poverty and wealth. With righteous
          indignation, it will look across the seas and see individual capitalists of
          the West investing huge sums of money in Asia, Africa and South America,
          only to take the profits out with no concern for the social betterment of
          the countries, and say: “This is not just.” It will look at our alliance
          with the landed gentry of Latin America and say, “This is not just.” The
          Western arrogance of feeling that it has everything to teach others and
          nothing to learn from them is not just.
          - King

          Even when they call us mad, when they call us subversives and communists
          and all the epithets they put on us, we know we only preach the subversive
          witness of the Beatitudes, which have turned everything upside down.
          - Archbishop Oscar Romero

          • Matt J.

            Jason, the problem you have isn’t with capitalism; it’s with corporatism, and the only power businesses wield in that system is the power they wield through government, no matter what party is in charge. It’s a common mistake but until you can differentiate between the two, there’s not much to argue and there’s not much to your article.

            A quote dump? Isn’t that something like what an octopus does before beating a hasty retreat? I’m glad you’re heart is in the right place (even while you uncharitably accuse others of not having your concerns) but I have to say it’s a typical tactic employed by Christian leftists like yourself to throw down a caustic challenge and then when challenged, throw up a pretentious defense and then claim the moral high ground. You’re not kidding anyone.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            Oh, Matt J.
            What proof have you that getting government out of the way would make corporations and large businesses into ethical creatures? Greed is the name of the game and will not change just because they can’t finagle government corruption anymore. Right now, they use lobbyists. In Ron Paul’s America, they won’t even need that.

            I’ve studied the issues. I’ve weighed upon it heavily. I gave it four years of thought. It’s empty, empty, empty rhetoric. Believe it or don’t. But don’t insult my intelligence.

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            Getting government out of the way won’t make corporations ethical.

            But, allowing unethical criminal corporations to go bankrupt instead of bailing them out, will get rid of these corporations.

            Society has a CHOICE on whether they want a corporation to live or die.  You simply stop doing business with them.  Goldman Sachs wouldn’t exist today if it wasn’t for our government.  There’s plenty of competent non criminal banks that can replace them.

            Let them go under.  Lots of banks didn’t engage in this CDO fiasco.  JP Morgan is another group of criminals that shouldn’t exist today.  Let them go under.

            Your government is keeping these criminals in control.  Greedy individuals aren’t – in fact if these companies were allowed to fail, these greedy individuals would have much smaller net worths.

          • Matt J.

            Right on, fuzzywzhe! That is real compassion. Taking away the power of government to dole out corporate welfare to the rich and the political elites, forcing them to face the consequences of their greed. It just doesn’t allow leftists to selfishly pat themselves on the back for supporting policies that only symbolically advocate for the poor while keeping a place a system that destroys their freedom, wealth, and opportunities.

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            We always seem to be given this distraction that the argument is socialism versus capitalism.  What we saw with the bailouts was not capitalism, it was corporatism, the same economic system of fascism.

            There’s a lot of people who are VERY wealthy who are INCOMPETENT to have this wealth.  They’re the ones that got bailed out by TARP, QE1 and QE2.

            Let the banks go bankrupt, let debtors declare their own bankruptcy and let the people who weren’t reckless enjoy the fruits of their labor.  It’s very simple.

            I know it won’t happen, so I have to gamble in the stock market and own various hard assets…

          • Anonymous

            Alright! Here’s a conversation!

            Notice the author is nowhere to be found.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            LOl. Yeah, sometimes the author’s got better things to do than argue with robots. If you seriously think that any of this is compassionate, I’m not going to waste my fingertips with ya. Have a nice day.

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            Yes, I’m the most sophisticated robot in the world that can perform abstract thought and thinking, and respond in a contextual manner.

            You have us pegged.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            Sorry, but you men have already shown your capacity for “compassion.” Your circle jerking fails to amuse me any further.

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            I don’t have any compassion for thieves and criminals, and that’s who runs this country today.

            Don’t be naive and believe that this government which is bought and paid for is there to help you, or to improve your life or to make a fair playing field. Their job is to assist a bunch of criminals who will happily steal every penny you’ve worked for in your entire life.

            You need to grow up and realize that. There’s been no real prosecutions in the financial sector since 2008, despite RAMPANT fraud in the system and there won’t be.

            Jon Corzine is a textbook criminal, he would be TRIVIAL to prosecute, but he won’t be. Instead the government will go further into debt to bailout criminals like him, and the bill is placed on you, and your children, and your children’s children.

            That’s what you are going to be voting for if you don’t vote for Paul.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            Spare me the theatrics. Capital vultures like Bain will be rewarded, not forced bankrupt, under your so-called Free Market.

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            Goldman Sachs wouldn’t exist if it wasn’t for the bailouts.

            I don’t know about Bain Capital. It depends, did they make a bunch of criminal bets on CDO’s that went sour? I don’t know.

            I think it would have been better for Bain to replace Goldman Sachs, it certainly can’t be any worse.

            You have the myopic thinking that successful companies are inherently evil. Companies that provide a service to people who benefit from it, are not evil. Companies that provide a service to people and can only provide that service through putting a gun at a taxpayers head, I would argue ARE evil.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            Look up corporate raiders. They benefit from the companies by taking their money and firing boatloads of people, while charging immense fees for their services. Then they release the company back into the ‘wild’ so to say. If the company then does good, the cr,’s get extra bonuses. If it doesn’t, they still make out like the bandits they are because of all the service charges.

            They’re pirates, and it’s part of the capitalist system…

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

            You don’t think Goldman Sachs, Bear Sterns, AIG, etc – do this?

            You know, the companies that the US taxpayer bailed out with over 10 trillion dollars of loans through the federal reserve which taxpayers are ultimately responsible for?

            That’s your government. When will you understand that the government isn’t going to help you? It’s not there to help you. It’s there to screw you, steal from you, and enslave you. When will you realize this?

            It lied you into a war, it’s given trillions of dollars to our criminal financial system, it’s prosecuted nobody and it never will, it’s done away with your 4th, 5th, and 6th amendment rights.

            When will you morons realize what this government is? When? You think that taxes are going to be used to help the poor and disadvantaged? The entire Social Security Surplus HAS BEEN SPENT. All 2 trillion dollars of it, is spent. The government calls it an “investment”, all that money is now Treasury Bills. That means the government either needs to get a loan to pay out that money, or raise taxes. When will you idiots realize what the government is?

            How long does this have to go one, how criminal does it have to get?

            You complain about Bain Capital which might very well be a corporate raider, but what about the FAILED BANKS that the government YOU DEFEND, saved who do the same exact thing, and not with their money, but with money they borrowed from the US government that YOU have to pay back?

            When will you finally realize that the Federal government aids and abets? It doesn’t prevent it doesn’t slow it down, it speeds it up.

          • http://nailtothedoor.blogspot.com Dan Martin

            Jason, I love you man, but you need to show a little grace here. I’m not impressed with the Paulites either but I don’t think the tenor of this reply represents the King…

          • Anonymous

            What? It’s compassionate to bail out corporations that would have otherwise failed due to malinvestment and taking unsound risks (that really aren’t risks due to our responsibility of BAILING THEM OUT)
            So the losses are then socialized (as being paid for through tax collection), yes government bailout, where does the government get their money? Taxpayers, mainly, a few other comparatively irrelevant sources.
            But the gains are privatized.. And that’s the problem.

            I really don’t even, after reading all these comments and your whole article, don’t even have any idea what your objection is with Ron Paul? Something about his ideas are similar to what you’ve heard from David Duke.. You point? We are all entitled to our own opinion, and guess what? Sometimes different people even have the same opinion or ideas!
            So you manufacturer some abstract link between the KKK and Ron Paul out of economic policy reform? Because I have never heard (from watching interviews and C-SPAN recordings) or read (from any book actually authored by Ron Paul) that I would think for one second he is racist. Or that any of his policies are racist. All you get is some shrouded connections from opinions of people who don’t know shit about Ron Paul.
            Waste your fingertips on something other than disillusioned smack-talk.

            ________________________________
            From: Disqus
            To: whiskey1bravo@yahoo.com
            Sent: Tuesday, January 24, 2012 10:50 AM
            Subject: [patheospangeablog] Re: Ron Paul: The Anti-War Candidate Who Will Start New Wars

            Disqus generic email template

            Jas-nDye wrote, in response to whiskey1bravo:
            LOl. Yeah, sometimes the author’s got better things to do than argue with robots. If you seriously think that any of this is compassionate, I’m not going to waste my fingertips with ya. Have a nice day.
            Link to comment

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            Decarations against the Civil Rights Act, voted against recognizing MLK Day (@twice), supports the segregatioist view, thinks that ending fed war on drugs will free blacks, tells blacks and latinos (and other minorities) – very paternalistically – that they’re limited by their race categories, accepts monies (and doesn’t return it) from neo-Nazi groups that he has ties with, and then there’s the newsletters, which he has never taken ownership of nor apologized for. Whether or not he personally is a racist, I can’t say. But he sure acts a hell of a lot like one.

          • Matt J.

            For a second, I thought that after talking about how you’re guided by Jesus and the Bible you were going to include some scripture in your second quote salvo. Instead, you went with the Early Church Fathers and Popes as though that were the same thing. Unless you’re going to make an argument for the infallibility of councils and popes, there is a disconnect. I don’t believe for a second that private property belongs to others just because St. Ambrose said it. That is a total contradiction if he said it in the way you’re portraying it.

            Scripture is deeply concerned with private property and stewardship (which is what I think you mean to address). Stealing and covetousness even make the top 10, which implies that things indeed can be owned, not the least of which is your own person, and cannot be misappropriated by the use of force or coercion. This is where progressives make the most serious mistake by confusing God’s moral law for individuals with political policy. Man is answerable to God for his lack of stewardship. No where does scripture authorize the confiscation of property by others or other groups if they don’t think they’ve used their property wisely. That would be theft. Even when became governed by human kings (over the objection of Samuel and by a rejection of God as King), the confiscation of resources by government was a dire warning, not a divine endorsement.

            Getting government out of the way won’t make people ethical? That completely misses the point and if you think that government will make people more ethical by force, that is utter blasphemy.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            I was using those with authority, the Church Fathers. Even Evangelicals such as myself have to recognize that they’re closer to biblical culture and so less likely to be encultured by middle class Americanism than you or I (or our preachers and even theologians). 

            I find their prophetic voice to be in closely relayed to the teachings of Jesus on wealth, to the commandments of Deuteronomy 15, to the entire book of Amos (speaking of getting the government directly involved!), to the dire warnings of James’ epistle, to the parable of Nathan the Prophet… Need I go on?

            We tend to read the bible in our own cultural understanding. So we read, “Thou shalt not covet” as a warning against the poor. But the whole of the bible doesn’t really care for personal property, except to warn against our greed and avarice of it.”Thou shalt not covet,” is a warning to those who want more than their fair share – because the whole world is God’s, and everything within it.

          • Mike Ward

            Jason said, “We tend to read the bible in our own cultural understanding. So we read, ‘Thou shalt not covet’ as a warning against the poor.”

            Who is this “We”. I’ve never known ANYONE to take that view. So “We” should be “I” and since you don’t take that view either it should actually be “no one”

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            I truly don’t know how you haven’t heard that, Mike. Most of the time, when I hear of that commandment, it is offered as something that the poor do against the rich. “They covet my pearls! They covet my health care! They covet my fine-looking house/wife/car!”

          • Mike Ward

            I’ve never even heard that commandment used to reference something others were doing to “us”. It’s never been “they” should stop coveting us. It’s always been “we” should stop coveting.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            Maybe you should watch more Bill O’Reilly. LOL.

            Or, better yet, don’t. LOL

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            But my quote dump was in regards to your assumption that private property trumps all. I don’t know if you’re a Christian or not, but I am and allow the words of Jesus and the bible to be my guide. Would you like me to continue, because I think I shall. According to the Church Fathers and a few of the Popes, private property is to be used for the benefit of all equally:

            St. Ambose: “You are not making a gift of your possessions to poor persons. You are handing over to them what is theirs. For what has been given in common for the use of all, you have arrogated to yourself. The world is given to all, and not only to the rich.”

            St. John Chrysostom: “Not to enable the poor to share in our goods is to steal from them and deprive them of life. The goods we possess are not ours, but theirs.”

            St. Gregory the Great: “When we attend to the needs of those in want, we give them what is theirs, not ours. More than performing works of mercy, we are paying a debt of justice.”

            The Decretals: “It is no less a crime to take from him that has, than to refuse to succor the needy when you can and are well off.”

            St. Ambrose: “It is the hungry man’s bread that you withhold, the naked man’s cloak that you store away, the money that you bury in the earth is the price of the poor man’s ransom and freedom.”

            Thomas Aquinas: ‘One should not consider one’s material possessions as one’s own, but as common to all, so as to share them without hesitation when other are in need.’

            Pope Leo XII’s Encyclical:
            Every person has by nature the right to possess property as his or her own […] But if the question be asked: How must one’s possessions be used?, the Church replies without hesitation in the words of St. Thomas Aquinas: ‘One should not consider one’s material possessions as one’s own, but as common to all, so as to share them without hesitation when other are in need.’ […] True, no one is commanded to distribute to others that which is required for one’s own needs and those of one’s household; nor even to give away what is reasonably required to keep up becomingly one’s condition in life. […] But when what necessity demands has been supplied and one’s standing fairly provided for, it becomes a duty to give to the needy out of what remains over.”

            John Paul II (encyclical letter Centesimus Annus, 1991): “It will be necessary above all to abandon a mentality in which the poor – as individuals and as people – are considered a burden, as irksome intruders trying to consume what others have produced.”

    • Anonymous

      Really good perspective Matt, I hope there are more like you instead of more like the author come election time. It’s true, church and state should most definitely be separated!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_FF5BTOUOVQAY6BSJD26QTWB5ZM Gimpy81

    Opinion is the mother of all freedom.  I don’t think the author understands that the only way he retains the ability to write this garbage is because of people like Paul.  The conclusions leave out facts.  He looks at each individual area and nitpicks areas.  Yes freedom can be difficult.  But when you look at the entire picture things become less troublesome.  For instance.  0% tax oh my, the author would say how do we feed our children or the poor or elderly if we don’t have social programs.  Now the big picture says how many good paying jobs would flock to this country if the corporate tax was 0% and the rest of the world was at 25-50%?  Why would you need social nets if everyone had 5 jobs to choose from.  If more money was put into your pocket you would see an explosion of charities.  My whole point is to realize that these are complicated situations.  One has to address everything.

    • Richard Turnbull

       You might enjoy reading the Market Ticker forum article on “What America

       Must Demand of its Politicians”   — the section on how Apple’s I-Pads etc. 
        have come to be made by SLAVE LABOR in China is especially noteworthy.

          By the way, aren’t there some nasty traditions left over from before the Dark
       Ages in the West citing supposedly “Christian” texts allowing for slavery? 

         With enough selective reading and hermeneutic spin, I can “prove” almost
        anything about the OT and the NT — although maybe not going as far as
        Dead Sea Scroll translator John C. Allegro in *The Sacred Mushroom and the
         Cross* — arguing that is was all a mystical shroom cult!

  • Anonymous

    Mr Kurt Williams,

    I understand your qualms and even respect them. Any political philosophy will eventually lead to a dystopian world for some.  

    However, look around you right now. Children are being bombed in your name right this moment. Your liberal and conservative politicians have voted in an act which allows for the unlimited detainment of American citizens without trial. They almost passed the SOPA and IPA acts.  The Patriot Act was passed without it having even been read!  Your Supreme Court Justices have ruled that corporations are people, that private property can be taken from citizens and handed to corporations via eminent domain, that unlimited political donations are okay.  

    The corruption in our current system has reached a tipping point. We are losing our civil rights. Our country is being bankrupted.  What can we do about it?

    Voting for Obama, Romney, or Gingrich is just voting to maintain that corruption. 

    Look at the recent British scandal of News of the World, their Prime Minister, and Scotland Yard… and then look at Fox News (owned by the same people as News of the World).  Look at how Ross Perot had to literally sue to get his television ads on the air, and now how Ron Paul suffers under a media blackout.  Tell me that the 4th Estate is not as corrupt as our political system?

    What can we do about it?

    Ron Paul might not be your perfect candidate, but he is the only chance we have of affecting any real change.

    You think the Department of Education needs an overhaul?  Fine.  Abolish it and then recreate a better one, free of special interest monies.  

    • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

      Dear Braaainz,
      Thank you for being civil enough to address this to me. I’d like you to know that I considered supporting RP because of his anti-war policies – or at least how they were presented as being anti-war. But the more I read up on him, the more terrified I became. He makes the point that the Federal government should not be doing much of this work, but seems to be pro-big business doing their evil work.

      In other words, US Army out, Private Militias (cf, Blackwater) in.

      • Mike Ward

        He also wanted to fight terroism by issuing letters of marque and reprisal to pay people a bounty to capture terrorists.

        http://paul.house.gov/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=388&Itemid=60

        So he’s not a pacifist. He’d just rather pay private citizens to do violence on the US’s behalf rather than use the standing army.

        • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

          Excellent point, Mike. I had thought of that, and now I’m wondering if I added that (or why I didn’t). Honestly, I did do a lot of work and research on this essay. But I’m sloppy as far as footnoting it all…

        • Anonymous

          Mr Ward,
          The link you provided deals ONLY with the terrorists involved with 9/11. I think you are misrepresenting Dr Paul. Has he advocated the general use of private militias anywhere near the level Bush or Obama have already used?!?

          Please tell me how Dr Paul is worse than the other options available because so far I am just finding myself questioning your integrity.

          • Mike Ward

            Questioning my integrity? Are you serious?

          • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

             If he’s not serious, I am.

            He asked you to explain why Paul was worse than the other options available.  I’d like to see your response.

          • Anonymous

            DMr Ward,
            Am I serious? Yes. You provide a link and make it found as if Dr Paul advocates things like Blackwater mercenaries, yet if you read the linked material it provides a different picture.

            Dr Paul provided constitutional justification for his suggestions and this was solely in regards to the 9/11 terrorists. I don’t know about you, but if I was President, I would offer s bounty on those individuals.

            So once again, yes, I do question your integrity when you misrepresent things so much.

            I do want you to answer my question. How is any other candidate any better?

          • Mike Ward

            I never said anything about Blackwater mercenaries.

            I never said that letters of marque and reprisal were unconstitutional. I only said that Paul was not a pacifist.

            You are making up things that I never said anything about and then attacking me for them.

            You are the one who lacks integrity.

          • Anonymous

            I went back and read your post, you EDITED IT!!!

            lol, you prove my point. We’re done here.

          • Mike Ward

            I did not. I don’t even have the ability to edit my post.

      • Anonymous

        Mr Dye,
        Could you please give links showing Dr Paul advocating the US Government using private militias?

        Also, how does his stance differ from the other presidential candidates who have already endorsed such actions and push for more conflicts?

        • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

          I don’t any direct proof. It’s more a logical conclusion from his stances on government and “private” involvement. However, if someone has some video/audio record of him disparaging private militias, I’d love to hear it and recant.

  • http://twitter.com/CurtisKnows0 Curtis L.

    I really think this article has a lot more to offer. The style in which it was written simply doesn’t allow it to come through though. There’s no use being polemical if the goal is civil discourse.

    • http://twitter.com/CurtisKnows0 Curtis L.

      And by the way, I strongly dislike Ron Paul. I think his positions are dangerous and ignorant almost across the board. 

      • Mike Ward

        Me too. I keep clicking on “like” for comments that support Paul thinking to myself “do I really like this?” but the things I like about the comments are things other than their endorsement of Paul.

  • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

    that’s funny, Gimpy. I mean, at least Scrooge had the decency to pay taxes for prisons and poor houses. History shows us, again and again, that individual charity will NOT alleviate the suffering of the poor nearly as much as governmental aid will and does. We can argue about systemic changes, but arguing that the government “forces” you to pay taxes and how evil that is is just abundantly anti-Christ.

    • Anonymous

      Government can NOT completely alleviate poor peoples suffering either. Government is not the cure for ailment. Actually, people are, but so much for really trying to get anyone to listen. Because as soon as you start asking questions, OH YOU’RE A RACIST! OH YOU’RE AN ISOLATIONIST! OH YOU’RE A CONSPIRACY THEORIST. 

      No offense, but the Bible isn’t the complete answer either. Actually, all it does is fail to answer the question just like everything else. Just believe, don’t worry about whether it’s true. Government: Just believe, don’t worry about whether it’s true.

      Wake UP America! 

      • http://nailtothedoor.blogspot.com Dan Martin

        With respect, the point isn’t particularly whether government, or religion, or anything else can “completely alleviate poor people’s suffering.”  Rather, it is a question of “will this action I am contemplating, lead to more or less suffering on the part of the poor?”  This simple calculus, IMO, is both important and neglected in most of these arguments.  To me, bottom line, if you cause more pain and harm to “the least of these,” you’re headed in the wrong direction, and no philosophy of “good” or “limited” government mitigates the fact.

        • Anonymous

          My main problem with all of the back-handed lashing of Ron Paul, is that there is very little actual evidence that would suggest the enormous amount of hysterical SPECULATION brought forth from a Ron Paul presidency. 

          Even the author points out that the President is not a “End-Game” for anything, one of the mere checks/balances designed into our system, so then why is everyone freaking out about what Ron Paul intends to do??

          There is a serious problem on our hands, a series of serious problems, if you will, that will occur if our government is not reigned in. Don’t you see? Ron Paul is a start, not an end. 

          • http://nailtothedoor.blogspot.com Dan Martin

            A perfectly reasonable question, W1B.  I would argue that whether or not Paul as president *could* accomplish what he says he’d try, a vote for him would be a vote for (and perceived by him as a mandate for) those policies he advocates.  With Jason, I agree that maybe 20%-40% of those policies would be spot-on and what we need, but the others are, in my judgment, most likely to be most detrimental to those least able to defend themselves.  I cannot support them, and I cannot support the philosophy upon which they are based.

            I might be able to get behind Paul as SecDef, however!  ;{)

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            The problem is that the very things were we may agree with him (ie, ending the War on Terror) are the very things that he would NEVER be allowed to do anything about.

          • http://nailtothedoor.blogspot.com Dan Martin

            True that!

          • Anonymous

            Neither one of you elaborate on points you agree or disagree with. If you can’t make valid points than your opinion is pretty useless.

            It’s the conversation that Ron Paul brings to the table, more than anything, don’t you understand? He is the only man out of any of the candidates and Obama who is bringing serious attention to our monetary system. AND HIS MESSAGE HASN’T CHANGED SINCE AT LEAST 1988. 

            Yes, that’s an hour long interview of Ron Paul from 1988. 

            You want to know what happened to the last president who wanted true monetary reform? Look up JFK.

            I’m just saying, the government does nothing but hide and confiscate. It grows larger with every war, with every piece of healthcare reform, with every piece of environmental protection legislation, every regulation on business..

            You want to talk substance? Or hide around behind euphemisms  and pretty words like all the other candidates dancing around on stage

          • http://nailtothedoor.blogspot.com Dan Martin

            OK W1B, here’s a little specificity for you: Paul’s diagnosis of a corrupt, mismanaged financial system is accurate, but his prescription could well kill the patient. In particular, I am troubled by the utter lack of regard displayed by Paul and most Paulites, for the collateral damage their proposals would inflict upon the poor and disadvantaged.

            This concern is all the more acute for me, given that the real burden–proportionately speaking–of our broken systems are our spending on defense, the financial sector, and corporate welfare. These could be addressed with a deliberate focus on mitigating collateral damage, and to do so would, I believe, be a whole lot more Christian as well as pragmatically more effective. But instead, Paul and his ilk raise hell about welfare, foreign (nonmilitary) aid, and the rest of the usual right-wing whipping boys which taken together account for a tiny fraction of the waste they decry. Thus they lose me and many other would-be allies whose consciences can’t countenance plans that crush the bottom first.

            The harsh reality is that Paul is trying to do what he advocates through the Republican Party. That party is wholly owned by business interests, and in it business wins over justice every time. Not that the Dems are any better fit, but the GOP is an odd platform from which to credibly attack Paul’s putative targets…

          • Anonymous

            RP would do more for the poor than any other candidate, including the democrats.

            Read his plan to restore America. He is NOT cutting ANY social programs that people have become dependent on, like medicare, social security, veteran benefits, etc. Infact he is making cuts in other areas to ensure people are not left out in the cold. Mainly overseas spending that is not defense. His plan is to start allowing younger citizens to OPT-out of these programs if they choose, and invest their money as they see fit.

            He is right when he says that most of the social programs are unconstitutional, and usually inneffective. But that doesnt mean he’s going to just cut people off benefits… your being ridiculous, and it just shows who is actually researching what Dr. Paul plans to do as president instead of making assumptions.

            By the way, the government doesn’t do a very good job most of the time.. why are you assuming that it is the governments job to take from one person and give it to another?
            That is not charity, its theft.
            When people can keep what they’ve earned instead of being over-taxed there will be a lot more charity donations.. donations to charities that are actually effective and help people.

            Government is not the answer. We as responsible individuals are the answer, and we could do a lot more for each other if our income wasn’t mismanaged by the federal government.

          • Anonymous

            Thank you for pointing out some specifics in your objections.

            First off, his ‘diagnosis’ is indeed accurate. I have no reason to believe, however, than Ron Paul’s intentions to restore a sound monetary policy, first by introduces a competitive currency (backed by gold, silver, and other precious metals) would in-and-of-itself cause a financial collapse. Objectively, you need to look at the people currently in power at the Federal Reserve (and what massive power they wield) and how difficult, as history has proven, it is to overthrow any *especially* powerful leader. The Federal Reserve owns so much freakin stock, even selling a small portion can cause a recession, and if they want, a crash. So there are many more factors involved in dismantling our imaginary-money printing press. If you were entirely honest with yourself, which I may be wrong but it appears you are not, financial collapse can happen with or without Ron Paul.
            Second, and again, you must remain honest with yourself, you do not want to pay the true taxes it would take to support the welfare state we currently run. If we could afford to have the welfare state (and the imperial army we’ll get to) the our country WOULDN’T BE $15 TRILLION IN DEBT. It is unrealistic to say “the govt needs to take care of the poor and unfortunate”. That is fantasy in it’s own right. And don’t even mention the fact that all these multi-billion dollar insurance companies, and multi-billion dollar pharmaceutical companies couldn’t do anything to help.. No, it’s all a govt expense.. (see also Taxpayer expense). All logic on the welfare state is illogical, in my opinion. You can not say, with certainty and provable fact, that the people are better with it than without.. Simply because there really isn’t good history to go off of, only speculation.
            Thirdly, there is a HUGE difference between military spending and defense spending. I really don’t understand why that’s so difficult to differentiate, unless your agenda is to smear the perception of difference.. Is it not logical to assume that more troops in the actual US would be safer than troops that are spread around the world? We are not supposed to the the Imperial Army from Star Wars, reaching out across space (Earth) to dominate opposition and install our own philosophies. Certainly if you are all mostly Christians you agree that leading by example is, over time, more effective than forcing integration.
            Fourthly, foreign aid is most detrimental in it’s perpetuation of devaluing our dollars, as is the entire Federal Reserve system. Every new dollar that is printed dilutes the dollars that were already printed. America was built into one of the greatest countries in all of human history with non-interventionist government and a sound money policy, also no foreign aid and no welfare state and no central bank, for 135 years.
            Shall I continue to dissect your arguments or am I starting to shine a little light?

            ________________________________
            From: Disqus
            To: whiskey1bravo@yahoo.com
            Sent: Tuesday, January 24, 2012 10:41 AM
            Subject: [patheospangeablog] Re: Ron Paul: The Anti-War Candidate Who Will Start New Wars

            Disqus generic email template

            Dan Martin wrote, in response to whiskey1bravo: OK W1B, here’s a little specificity for you: Paul’s diagnosis of a corrupt, mismanaged financial system is accurate, but his prescription could well kill the patient. In particular, I am troubled by the utter lack of regard displayed by Paul and most Paulites, for the collateral damage their proposals would inflict upon the poor and disadvantaged.

            This concern is all the more acute for me, given that the real burden–proportionately speaking–of our broken systems are our spending on defense, the financial sector, and corporate welfare. These could be addressed with a deliberate focus on mitigating collateral damage, and to do so would, I believe, be a whole lot more Christian as well as pragmatically more effective. But instead, Paul and his ilk raise hell about welfare, foreign (nonmilitary) aid, and the rest of the usual right-wing whipping boys which taken together account for a tiny fraction of the waste they decry. Thus they lose me and many other would-be allies whose consciences can’t countenance plans that crush the bottom first.

            The harsh reality is that Paul is trying to do what he advocates through the Republican Party. That party is wholly owned by business interests, and in it business wins over justice every time. Not that the Dems are any better fit, but the GOP is an odd platform from which to credibly attack Paul’s putative targets… Link to comment

          • http://nailtothedoor.blogspot.com Dan Martin

            Well W1B, I’m trying to discuss this with you in a civil tone and I thought at first you were reciprocating in kind.  Now I’m not so sure, but I’ll try one more time, as you do ask some questions that are worthy of response.

            First of all, I grant you that while I suspect Paul’s theories would lead to fiscal collapse, the stability of the system is by no means guaranteed even without his harsh medicine.  Just because I think Ron Paul is wrong does *not* in any form mean that I defend his opponents as right.  I don’t know why you think I’m not being honest with myself on this, but I have no faith that the Fed or Obama (or the Republican opponents) is going to stave off collapse, though I think such a collapse may be a surer–and sooner–thing with Paul’s axe than by some other routes.  We need to have a dialog about how to address this, and I give Paul props for at least engaging the dialog with different ideas than the tired old same-old of the two parties.  Even if I think he’s wrong, he at least has the cojones to say something, and further to say that the present pattern is broken.

            Having said that, I must take issue with the implications of the “welfare state” you and your fellow Paul supporters keep decrying.  Take a good look at the federal budget.  How much of it goes to “welfare?”  Not bloody much!  That Department of Education you all want to close?  Without much of its funding, a significant portion of those who go to college–possibly including you, definitely including me–never would have gotten there.  No matter how much “local control” mantras get repeated, I believe (in a tradition dating all the way back to Jefferson) that we as a nation are safer, and have the potential to be more prosperous, the closer we get to universal education.  If that’s “welfare,” I would argue it is supporting the welfare of all of us…rich, poor, or in-between.

            Likewise Medicare…one of the biggest non-military expenditures in the Federal budget.  It does support those of limited means, but it also supports a whole lot of people who could bloody well afford private insurance.  The answer, in my opinion, is not to eliminate it but to means-test it.  Social Security too.

            But the major chunks of our federal budget are not spent on the poor…that “welfare class” which is the butt of all conservative wrath.  They go to the military, to defense contractors, to agribusiness, to oil and coal companies, to the “financial industry,” and on and on.  Wealth is transferred by our government, but it’s from the many to the few, not the other way around.  That’s not ideology speaking, it’s math.

            To address your differentiation of military and defense spending…I partially concede your point though I think you’re splitting an insignificant hair.   To actually defend this country against potential invaders would require only a fraction of the troops, armaments, and expenditures of our current military budget.  I would wager 10% would be generous.  So for all mathematical intents and purposes I would argue that you’re making a distinction without a difference.  But as touching the force-element of foreign policy, I am in complete agreement with Paul, and I don’t know what I said that led you to believe otherwise.

            In nonmilitary aid, though, I think Paul has it completely wrong, for several reasons.  Two pragmatic ones:  first, it’s a whole lot cheaper to make friends than it is to defend against enemies, and properly-targeted aid helps to at least strengthen friendships if not actually make friends; and second, there is a whole lot that threatens us from infectious disease to piracy to the anger that comes from a poor world population seeing us in our fat-cat lives, that could be mitigated by responsible international development.  And then from a spiritual perspective, I believe any rich, whether religious or not, have a moral duty to aid those less-fortunate, and I apply this to rich nations as surely as to rich individuals.  We as a collective people are rich…and as such I believe we are morally obligated to use at least some of our wealth to alleviate suffering, even suffering that is not of our making.  So foreign aid in health, community development, water, sanitation, and that sort of stuff is, in my opinion, the absolute last thing we should cut (it’s also a miniscule fraction of a percent of our federal budget, so cutting it will have no material effect on our economy–math again).

            Finally, let’s look at your 135-year history of the US, when by your implication everything was golden before we screwed it up with the federal reserve and other such infernal institutions.  By my calculation, 135 years takes us from 1776 to 1911, just before we got into the first World War.  The culmination of that time was the Industrial Revolution of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.  That was a great time for the Carnegies and Mellons and Rockefellers…for the schmucks who worked for them, not so much.  If that’s your idea of an ideal economy, I suggest a tad more digging would be in order.  Even then, a vastly larger proportion of our population was still rural and agrarian, a situation that’s hardly practical in today’s America.  The rural folks were better off than the urban industrial workers, but the aggregation of immense wealth by the robber barons of first the railways, and then the steel, oil, coal, and other industrial interests, was hardly a paradigm of equal opportunity.

            To sum…while there may indeed be oversimplifications in my argument, I do not see coherence and reason dominating the libertarian side either.  And my faith still compels me to weigh the bad choices in terms of the misery I believe they will cause.  I have yet to be convinced that Paul brings healing rather than another, and possibly greater, misery.

            And at the risk of seeming pompous, may I suggest you all re-read what I just wrote.  I think I managed to address your arguments without a single ad-hominem directed against either you or Ron Paul.  It can be done!  We call it civil discourse.

          • Anonymous

            Have you ever read The Creature From Jeckyll Island? Every person that I have shared this book with has changed their opinion about the Federal Reserve and history of central banking. History of the last 300-400 years.
            Here is a link to a pdf version. I really encourage you to start reading, and if it influences your opinion, please do as I have and share the text. I have purchased 2 copies of this book and currently have both lent out to my friends and family.
            http://x480.com/CreatureFromJekyllIslandbyG.EdwardGriffin.pdf

            Please be discreet with sharing the link, I’m not advocating piracy or anything, obviously I have bought the book twice, but the word must be spread. It is imperative to human civilization, and that is NOT an understatement.

            ________________________________
            From: Disqus
            To: whiskey1bravo@yahoo.com
            Sent: Tuesday, January 24, 2012 7:51 PM
            Subject: [patheospangeablog] Re: Ron Paul: The Anti-War Candidate Who Will Start New Wars

            Disqus generic email template

            Dan Martin wrote, in response to whiskey1bravo:
            Well W1B, I’m trying to discuss this with you in a civil tone and I thought at first you were reciprocating in kind.  Now I’m not so sure, but I’ll try one more time, as you do ask some questions that are worthy of response.
            First of all, I grant you that while I suspect Paul’s theories would lead to fiscal collapse, the stability of the system is by no means guaranteed even without his harsh medicine.  Just because I think Ron Paul is wrong does *not* in any form mean that I defend his opponents as right.  I don’t know why you think I’m not being honest with myself on this, but I have no faith that the Fed or Obama (or the Republican opponents) is going to stave off collapse, though I think such a collapse may be a surer–and sooner–thing with Paul’s axe than by some other routes.  We need to have a dialog about how to address this, and I give Paul props for at least engaging the dialog with different ideas than the tired old same-old of the two parties.  Even if I think he’s wrong, he at least has the cojones to say something, and further to say that the present pattern is broken.
            Having said that, I must take issue with the implications of the “welfare state” you and your fellow Paul supporters keep decrying.  Take a good look at the federal budget.  How much of it goes to “welfare?”  Not bloody much!  That Department of Education you all want to close?  Without much of its funding, a significant portion of those who go to college–possibly including you, definitely including me–never would have gotten there.  No matter how much “local control” mantras get repeated, I believe (in a tradition dating all the way back to Jefferson) that we as a nation are safer, and have the potential to be more prosperous, the closer we get to universal education.  If that’s “welfare,” I would argue it is supporting the welfare of all of us…rich, poor, or in-between.

            Likewise Medicare…one of the biggest non-military expenditures in the Federal budget.  It does support those of limited means, but it also supports a whole lot of people who could bloody well afford private insurance.  The answer, in my opinion, is not to eliminate it but to means-test it.  Social Security too.

            But the major chunks of our federal budget are not spent on the poor…that “welfare class” which is the butt of all conservative wrath.  They go to the military, to defense contractors, to agribusiness, to oil and coal companies, to the “financial industry,” and on and on.  Wealth is transferred by our government, but it’s from the many to the few, not the other way around.  That’s not ideology speaking, it’s math.

            To address your differentiation of military and defense spending…I partially concede your point though I think you’re splitting an insignificant hair.   To actually defend this country against potential invaders would require only a fraction of the troops, armaments, and expenditures of our current military budget.  I would wager 10% would be generous.  So for all mathematical intents and purposes I would argue that you’re making a distinction without a difference.  But as touching the force-element of foreign policy, I am in complete agreement with Paul, and I don’t know what I said that led you to believe otherwise.

            In nonmilitary aid, though, I think Paul has it completely wrong, for several reasons.  Two pragmatic ones:  first, it’s a whole lot cheaper to make friends than it is to defend against enemies, and properly-targeted aid helps to at least strengthen friendships if not actually make friends; and second, there is a whole lot that threatens us from infectious disease to piracy to the anger that comes from a poor world population seeing us in our fat-cat lives, that could be mitigated by responsible international development.  And then from a spiritual perspective, I believe any rich, whether religious or not, have a moral duty to aid those less-fortunate, and I apply this to rich nations as surely as to rich individuals.  We as a collective people are rich…and as such I believe we are morally obligated to use at least some of our wealth to alleviate suffering, even suffering that is not of our making.  So foreign aid in health, community development,
            water, sanitation, and that sort of stuff is, in my opinion, the absolute last thing we should cut (it’s also a miniscule fraction of a percent of our federal budget, so cutting it will have no material effect on our economy–math again).
            Finally, let’s look at your 135-year history of the US, when by your implication everything was golden before we screwed it up with the federal reserve and other such infernal institutions.  By my calculation, 135 years takes us from 1776 to 1911, just before we got into the first World War.  The culmination of that time was the Industrial Revolution of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.  That was a great time for the Carnegies and Mellons and Rockefellers…for the schmucks who worked for them, not so much.  If that’s your idea of an ideal economy, I suggest a tad more digging would be in order.  Even then, a vastly larger proportion of our population was still rural and agrarian, a situation that’s hardly practical in today’s America.  The rural folks were better off than the urban industrial workers, but the aggregation of immense wealth by the robber barons of first the railways, and then the steel, oil, coal, and other industrial
            interests, was hardly a paradigm of equal opportunity.
            To sum…while there may indeed be oversimplifications in my argument, I do not see coherence and reason dominating the libertarian side either.  And my faith still compels me to weigh the bad choices in terms of the misery I believe they will cause.  I have yet to be convinced that Paul brings healing rather than another, and possibly greater, misery.

            And at the risk of seeming pompous, may I suggest you all re-read what I just wrote.  I think I managed to address your arguments without a single ad-hominem directed against either you or Ron Paul.  It can be done!  We call it civil discourse.

            Link to comment

          • http://nailtothedoor.blogspot.com Dan Martin

            I’ll give it a look, but it’s really beside the point as I in no way defend or approve of the Fed. What of the rest of my points above?

          • Anonymous

            Well, I feel that the issue of the illegitimacy of the Federal Reserve trumps your other points. It is at the center of so many issues. It allows our government to continue spending money that doesn’t actually exist. It has allowed a handful to make billions upon billions in interest payments on money that was created out of thin air. It’s very hard to just explain this and expect you to believe and understand. I have spent many months reading and listening and watching determining my final opinions, I am on a quest to learn and understand ever more.

            I’m really not trying to argue for or against war or welfare or social security or anything like that. But the clear and absolute fact that our nation is $15 trillion and debt, with more than $200 trillion in unfunded liabilities.. That is the biggest burden we MUST get off our shoulders, hands down, before any – absolutely any conversation – can really, effectively begin to take place, much less any significant change.

            The simple fact is this: Most Americans do not trust politicians, or the government. It’s been proven time and time again that the private sector can operate more efficiently than any government program. So why would anyone think that federal control over Education, federal control over environmental protection, federal control over energy, federal control over security, etc. etc. etc. would be exempt from that flaw?

            We can argue about this over and over, and you aren’t going to change my opinion. I’m 26 years old, and 1 out of 4 paychecks a month goes to the federal government. I pay as much in FICA and SS each month as I do for rent on my 3 bed house. I don’t know how 90% of Americans put up with this, honestly.

          • Anonymous

            My apologies for seeming random. I think I misunderstood you originally and I’ve just been completely on a rant lately!

            I’ve also been trying to read this book, written in 1850 after the 3rd French Revolution

            The Law, Frederic Bastiat..

            “I do not dispute their right to invent social combinations, to advertise them, to advocate them, and to try them upon themselves, at their own expense and risk. But I do dispute their right to impose these plans upon us by law—by force—and to compel us to pay for them with our taxes”

            “What then, is law? It is the collective organization of the individual right to defend oneself, one’s liberty, and one’s property. Each of us has a natural right from God to defend his person, his liberty, and his property. If every person has the right to defend by force his person, his liberty, and his property, then it follows that a group of men have the right to organize and support a common force to protect these rights constantly. Thus the principle of collective right–its reason for existing, its lawfulness–is based on individual right. The common force that protects this collective right cannot logically have any other purpose or any other mission than that for which it acts as a substitute. Thus, since an individual cannot lawfully use arbitrary force against the person, liberty, or property of another individual, then, for the same reason, the common force cannot arbitrarily destroy or confiscate the person, liberty, or property of an individual.”

            “Such a perversion of force would be in both cases contrary to our premise. Force has been given to us to defend our own individual rights. Who will dare to say that our Creator has endowed us with force to infringe upon the equal rights of our brothers? Since no individual can lawfully use force to infringe upon the rights of others, does it not logically follow that the same principle also applies to the common force that is nothing more than the organized combination of the individual forces?
            It is not true that the legislature has absolute power over our persons and property. The existence of persons and property preceded the existence of the legislature, and its function is only to guarantee their safety. It is not true that the function of law is to regulate our consciences, our ideas, our wills, our education, our opinions, our work, our trade, our talents, our pleasures. The function of law is to protect the free exercise of these rights, and to prevent any person from interfering with the free exercise of these same rights by any other person. Since law necessarily requires the use of force, its proper domain is only in the areas where the use of force is proper–that is, the administration of justice. Every individual has the right to use force for self-defense, but for nothing else. For this reason, collective force–which is only the organized combination of the individual forces–can lawfully be used for the same purpose, and it should not be used for any other purpose. Law is solely the collection of the individual right of self-defense, which existed before law was formalized.”

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            Actually, we have plenty of history to show us what life is like for the severely poor without social safety net programs. Dickens is a good start, though…

          • Anonymous

            Charles Dickens? Seriously??!! The man was a storyteller, not a historian.
            ” A story based upon those elementary passions in which alone we seek the true and final manifestation of character must be told in a spirit of intellectual superiority to those passions. That is, the author must understand what he is talking about. The perusal of a story so told is one of the most elevating experiences within the reach of the human mind. The perusal of a story which is not so told is infinitely depressing and unprofitable.” http://web.archive.org/web/20071207125820/http://humwww.ucsc.edu/dickens/OMF/james.html

            ________________________________
            From: Disqus
            To: whiskey1bravo@yahoo.com
            Sent: Tuesday, January 24, 2012 9:50 PM
            Subject: [patheospangeablog] Re: Ron Paul: The Anti-War Candidate Who Will Start New Wars

            Disqus generic email template

            Jas-nDye wrote, in response to whiskey1bravo:
            Actually, we have plenty of history to show us what life is like for the severely poor without social safety net programs. Dickens is a good start, though… Link to comment

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            I’ve seen hour after hour of interview footage, I’ve listened to every RonPaulogy imaginable. But I’ve never heard him say anything that David Duke hasn’t already said.
            http://timwise.org

      • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

        You’re making some false assumptions, bro… Nobody here but the libertarians are suggesting that government is supposed to fix everything. I’ve never heard a real, actual adult liberal/progressive even suggest that.

        Kurt, myself and plenty of others ask the Big Questions and constantly criticize the systems, including the institutional church, federal and local governments, big businesses, and our consumerist culture. It doesn’t need to be racist, sexist, or homophobic – it just so happens that the “solutions” put forth by Paul and many of his followers will primarily hurt women and minorities.

        You know who DOES question the status quo but doesn’t do it in a racially and sexist way? Bernie Sanders.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_M4BXY6ADFL3W7INPAU74SLEJFE Ravikash

    Okay I’m just going to point out everything the author got completely wrong,  which just about encompasses his entire article. 

    1.  Ron Paul WILL NOT END THE EPA,  he proposed cutting the Department of Energy, the EPA and the Department of Energy are two totally different things, and the only one he wants to close is the Department of Energy.

    2.  Ron Paul being against the Civil Rights Act is equated too, “Racism is caused by those N####-lovers always trying to shove Black
    People’s equal-ness down our throats. If they would stop trying to be
    equal, we wouldn’t have racism!” Later on the author claims to read some part of one of Ron Paul’s books, well I have read a few, and he clearly states that everyone needs to be equal, he claims it is racist to say that we need more freedoms for black people, he says that we shouldn’t divide ourselves into different people, but realize that we are all individuals and we need equal freedom for every living human being, that is the most un-racist thought one could possibly have. By the way I’m a minority, and this is why I support Ron Paul

    3.  I was going to list a couple of more points but I’m done, just do what this author clearly doesn’t have any idea how to do, READ. That is right read books and articles physically authored by Ron Paul, and then make up your own mind about him. Hey it might turn out you don’t like him, and it might turn out that you do. Either way is fine with me, but don’t listen to anything this moron says because he has clearly done little to no research and is just spitting out false uneducated opinions. So please check it out for yourself and make up your own mind.

    • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

      What do you mean, “more freedoms for black people“? What is that even supposed to mean? Because I’ll tell you what I hear when white folks say that is EXACTLY what I meant by the “Racism is caused by,” quote.

      Please read some African-American history before you speak such ignorance. It’s really hurtful when Whites go around saying such dumb stuff. We sound like Bull Connor…

  • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

    I know this discussion is already comment-heavy, but I want to address several misconceptions that are floating around in this argument, as well as offer a couple of observations. Let me say up front that I do so as a theologian, as one who worked in business before going to grad school, and as someone personally affected by libertarianism-in-practice in the past. While I do find some things to admire about Ron Paul, my main concern is not him so much as the thinking behind him, which has been demonstrated on this thread. Let me also say that my comments will be mostly directed at Christians, since we do share a common sacred text and some common theology. Oh, and let’s save the vitriol (on any side). If we’re concerned about the gospel, let’s demonstrate the fruits of the spirit.

    1. I’m confused by the thinking of many supporting Ron Paul for president. If we’re interested in limited government, why do we think we’ll find the solution in a top-down approach by making a libertarian president? Isn’t the method contrary to the philosophy? If we’re interested in strict constitutionalism, then wouldn’t the presidency return to a much less powerful state, given the “original” thinking in the constitution has the president reporting to Congress almost like a council-manager form of local government: the president executes the decisions of Congress, and his only real check is the veto or certain political appointments? And why in the world would we actually expect Paul to get much of any of this accomplished? Why would we think that with his election, the structures we desire him to correct would actually lay down and take it? If we think he can handle it, then why is he having to run *within* a corrupt party system that so supports what many of you here (with not a little disdain) have said he’s against (e.g., crony capitalism)? Too much naivete, too much inconsistency for me to be convinced.

    2. The choices are not simply between Ron Paul and big government, or between free-market libertarian-style capitalism and state socialism. As an Anabaptist-influenced theologian, a powerful state is not high on my list of desires. But the fact is that the capitalism we have practiced has left many people marginalized and in need, and those needs must be met. The church can do a great deal with the Spirit’s help, but we’re usually not faithful enough to do that. If a governmental entity can help meet needs in a way that prevents unnecessary suffering of those who have been marginalized, then I can’t think of a reason to oppose that so long as it is well structured and inherently contingent (i.e., not self-perpetuating or self-justifying so that it becomes self-absolutized). ALSO, because of my Anabaptist influences, I’m not willing to place the bulk of my hope in a governmental leader to make the necessary corrections. The change we need, consistent with the gospel, begins and ends with us (again, by the direction and power of the Holy Spirit), not with top-down public policy (which, again, is rather ironic to hope for in light of libertarian tenets).

    3. Libertarianism operates with a classically liberal understanding of “freedom.” This is a freedom-from, rather than the freedom-for of the gospel. In the gospel, our freedom-from is freedom from sin, from those things that bind us from being faithful in living into the reality of the kingdom of God in Jesus Christ. Thus, we are *freed for* service to that gospel. Libertarian “freedom” has no shared goal in this vein. It’s goal is…freedom. So it becomes freedom for freedom’s sake, with no real telos to give that freedom meaning. Again, it simpy pales in comparison to the gospel.

    4. WE DO NOT NEED the freedom some of you think the true America affords us, that Ron Paul or libertarianism champions and will get us (again, top-down action here), in order for us to be a faithful church. I’ve seen that thinking multiple places in this discussion. Everything we need to be faithful to the gospel was accomplished, not on the battlefield or the halls of politics (or academia, or the corporate boardroom, or even main street), but on the cross and at the resurrection of Christ. Let’s stop thinking that we need anything else to be faithful, because it turns out that that “anything else” will be an idol. Is freedom of speech, religion, association, etc., good? Are these things on behalf of which the church can engage the state? I think so, but only when both our thinking and practice is consistent with the gospel, and when those for whom we seek those goods are the “least of these,” and not ourselves.

    • http://nailtothedoor.blogspot.com Dan Martin

      Brad, this is perhaps the most important comment on this thread.  Thank you.

      • Rana

        Thanks for pointing this comment out Dan! and I really appreciated your link about gov’t spending *scroll above* … interesting that about 75% of gov’t spending is on pensions, defense and healthcare -all about 25% each. Interesting that healthcare has been the only spending attacked, defense only slightly mentioned and pensions never mentioned at all. My understanding is even a 1 term senator gets FULL pension benefits. This is insane.

  • ron paul 2012!

    This article has got it all wrong and is intellectually dishonest. He must not have ever read a Paul book, listened to the man’s floor speeches or read his legislation. Ron Paul is the most Biblical candidate running. Those who want  to critique Paul from a Christian standpoint had better watch the video series called the Bible & Ron Paul on YouTube. Contact the uploader for interviews, debates, etc. http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL0E27AFB852E14B16

    • http://nailtothedoor.blogspot.com Dan Martin

      Paul is Absolutely. Not. Biblical.

      Go read your Bible again.  Pick the Law, the Prophets, the Gospels.  God cares a whole lot more about who’s getting screwed economically than almost any other thing.  The entire history of the Bible tells of depraved humans giving each other the shaft in direct opposition to God’s laws.  The libertarian elimination of government controls over humans’ propensity to abuse each other is as counter to the Biblical paradigm as anything can be.

      Which is not to say the status quo is any more biblical, to be sure…

      • Anonymous

        You are disillusioned. 

        • http://nailtothedoor.blogspot.com Dan Martin

          Disillusioned?  Well, if you mean I’m disillusioned from the idea that humans left to themselves will on the average do better rather than worse, then yes, I am!

          I have come to the conclusion that I believe in the total depravity (or near-total) of humanity, even though I’m categorically not Calvinist.  That is, I do not believe humanity’s depravity is deterministic, but rather probabilistic…in other words it’s not that some outside reality has predestined our depravity, but that a reasonable observation of human history is highly predictive of the same…

          • Anonymous

            Big words with little meaning. 

            Humans left to themselves will do better than humans without help? Is that what you are suggesting? 

            And also that our end is inevitable, regardless of actions?

            Maybe you didn’t hear Mitt Romney saying “Corporations are people, too”. 

            So think about how many mom & pop stores the following corporations have directly/indirectly put out of business or significantly reduced market share:

            Wal-mart

            CVS/Walgreens

            Autozone

            Clear Channel

            Microsoft

            Racetrac/Quiktrip

            Chase Bank

            Bank of America

            I could probably think of more if time allowed, but this is a good start. Then you could travel into thinking about how so many government regulations (for various industries) severely impact new business start-ups. The horror stories are a’plenty. 

            Then, there are the less obvious things. Such as the devaluation of our dollar perpetuated by the Federal Reserve.

             http://blogs.reuters.com/james-saft/2010/11/04/enter-the-era-of-dollar-devaluation/

            You ever tried figuring out the CPI? Good luck, if you manage to understand, you’ll see that every couple of years (or even for different sets of statistics) there is a different base for different periods of time, which they use to make the numbers look a lot better than reality. 

            The fact is, $1 US Federal Reserve Note from 1913 is worth only $.04 now. Or roughly, $22 and some change for what you could buy with only $1 in 1913. That’s some pretty steep devaluation. 

            You need to step back and take a look at all the facts. It’s not merely a question, it’s reality. **** is gonna hit the fan! 

          • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

            I’m actually sympathetic to the plights of small business here, but suggesting that we either go with libertarianism/Ron Paul or we’re against small business and main street is overly simplistic to the point of ridiculous. Those aren’t the only options.

          • Anonymous

            Your right, there are a lot of options that could make the system worse before it gets better

      • Anonymous

        Not only are you wrong about the bible, you are wrong about libertarians.

        Jesus refused to become king and a political leader.   It’s why the Jewish people rejected him, as they think the messiah will bring them their nation. 

        The entire old testament is about the nations and the nomadic Jewish people, and they are often times leaving cities to get away from the governments.

        And Libertarians are not in favor of removing the laws that allow people to abuse one another.     That is just straight up bunk and misinformation.

        • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

          No, Jesus did not refuse to become king or a political leader. He simply refused to do it on their (violent) terms. Check out the classic *Politics of Jesus* by John Howard Yoder.

          The Israelites were only nomadic for a very short part of the biblical narrative, not “the entire old testament.” I’m astounded that you would say that after accusing somebody about being “wrong about the Bible.” You are absolutely right in suggesting that the OT eschews a centralized human government, but the alternative to that is not individualism or libertarian freedom, but a nation revolving around covenant with Yahweh and the Torah at the heart of that covenant. What you have in mind here wasn’t even thought of there.

          Of course libertarians aren’t in favor of removing such laws. But the whole point is deciding which laws count as legitimate protection and which ones don’t.

          • Anonymous

            Tell that to the people of Israel who didn’t get a country until the 1950′s and those Jewish people who don’t even accept that as the nation promised to them.

            Furthermore, when the Jewish people asked and wanted a nation, and to be like the nations, they were turning their backs on god. God was angry about it, but eventually agrees to it – with the caveat about who will rule over them.

            Individualism is a function of the father being within. The source of free will, understanding and reasoning. Knowledge of the holy is understanding, and it is up to the individual to follow the father etc. Were you confused when Jesus says that there is only 1 true teacher and father?

            Which laws are legitimate to a Libertarian is if there is a victim or not. It’s not like they are picked randomly or something.

          • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

            Read the prophets sometime. God concedes to human kingship, but eventually it brings about Israel’s judgment (though that’s not a permanent result). You’re reading scripture through modern, classically liberal eyes. Individualism, as understood today, is far removed from the Hebrew or Christian scriptures. In the NT, it is made clear how we are to be community, confessing sins to one another, submitting to one another, learning from one another, etc. Your notion of autonomous Christianity is nowhere to be found there.

          • Anonymous

            Knowledge of the holy is understanding.

            There is only 1 true teacher, and that is the father via what is known as the holy spirit which brings understanding.

            Paul is a false prophet.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            You may have just hit the iceberg…

          • Anonymous

            I didn’t. The fact of the matter is that Christians would kill Jesus if he walked the earth today. Because they don’t know Jesus.

            Matthew 7 is what Christians can expect.

            Those who find life by sacrificing the truth live in the lie.

            Not to say all Christians are bad, most are just poor in spirit.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            What about matt twenty four?

          • Anonymous

            Matthew 24 is also a direct attack on the church, and the men who claim to be of god.

            This is why paul is wrong. Any man who tries to claim authority over other men via the name of god is by wrong. No man has any right to claim such an authority, and any man who does shouldn’t be believed.

            There is only 1 true teacher and 1 true father. If Paul understood what is spirit and what is flesh, he wouldn’t falsely assume he is waiting to be adopted. And he surely wouldn’t tell people to call him father, and the pope surely wouldn’t claim to be Christ on earth.

            Unfortunately, Christians have a tendency to look outward and they give Christianity a free pass so to speak because they are born into it.

            You know in Matthew 24 where talks about being hated by nations, and being killed? That scene they show in the left behind movies where you must take on the new religion or be killed? ALREADY HAPPENED. That is how Christianity took hold. If you didn’t claim to be a christian, they would burn you in the square in order to put fear into people to accept it.

            The truth was killed on the cross, and the lie will live, and the lie will rule this world until the truth returns. If the death of truth is required for me to live, then I do not deserve to live. I want to live in the truth, not in the lie. And so I wait anxiously for the truth to rule this world.

          • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

            I’m sorry, you’re talking about “Ron” or the apostle?

            I think we’ve about exhausted our potential for dialogue here, so peace to you.

          • Anonymous

            Awww, did I hit a sore spot? lol.

          • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

            Oh, I’m not at all threatened by that claim. It’s just that we clearly are operating with different frames of reference, so I’m not sure how fruitful continued conversation would be.

          • Anonymous

            I don’t consider myself a Christian because I believe it’s the life of Jesus that saves people, not his death. You are saved by following the path, and that path is lead by understanding.

            I view Jesus as being “truth” and that his murder was the murder of the truth so that the lie could live, and it did. And the lie will live and does live until the return of truth.

            Paul teaches the opposite of Jesus. You’ll have a hard time finding many times of Paul quoting Jesus, and when he does he’s usually wrong. For example, the last super. Paul makes it all about the bread and tries to make it out as a new covenant. When clearly the last super is actually just Proverbs 9 being portrayed physically in that Jesus is the the role of wisdom.

            And so rather than it being about wisdom and understanding, Paul turns it into being about a human sacrifice, which is just plain out Satanic, not to mention absolutely absurd.

        • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

          When we say that “Jesus is Lord” we are making a political statement. Jesus’ kingdom way is better than the ways of Empire.

  • http://108.80.56.115/theEnd/ fuzzywzhe

    The disgusting slew of misinformation is sickening.

    It’s just a constant onslaught of misinformation and lies constantly and unendingly.  

  • norman binkier

    Jason Dye this is why nobody likes you. let it go man. lol.

    • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

      I knew there had to be a reason…

  • Jessica Burman

    Have any of you Ron Paul supporters been to a country where there is no welfare? Do you want your country to be a third world country because this is where you are headed if you continue to support such lunacy. The free market got you into this mess and it sure as heck isn’t going to get you out of it.

    • Anonymous

      The free market hasn’t existed in America since the creation of the Federal Reserve. It is the control and manipulation of money in collusion with big business and big government that has caused this mess.

      The countries you are likely referring are not free societies. You have nothing more than talking points. Go do some real research instead of repeating what others tell you.

      • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

        So we go back to before the creation of the Fed and we find… what? Was this the high-point of American economic equity and shared wealth?

        • Anonymous

          We go back to a time when the people earned the interst on loaning out their own money instead of having to pay interest through labor tax to use their own money. All great empires were created when the people owned their own money and all great empires ended when they ceased to do so.

          • http://zackallen.me Zack Allen

            I’ve heard/read the antithesis of just about every major conservative talking point as the reason for the demise of “great empires.” Heck, I’ve even heard someone argue that when the majority of a population began to view homosexuality favorably it began to decline. What’s so bad about an empire coming to an end, anyway? USAmerica isn’t the first and it won’t be the last. It’s only a matter of time before it’s replaced with another.

          • Anonymous

            Thats true, I won’t argue that everything ultimately does come to an end. However, it doesn’t mean we should be doing things that expidite that. There are lots of nonsense spoken on both sides but the struggle of the people has always been about the control of money. It is as ancient as civilization itself and will always be that until the people realize money is nothing but a good like a can of soda and allowing someone to control it without any competition is ultimately a debt system that is paid back through lesser enslavement of ones labor.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            Yeah.. See, I’m not a fan of empires. Profit and leisure for few at the expense of the many. That’s the history of every empire. Babylonian, Roman, British, American. They all have profited from material, economic, and sexual rape of their colonies.

          • Anonymous

            I agree with that sentiment but empires don’t necesarilly have to be military domination. It can be an economic empire, an exploration empire(space), it can be an empire of knowledge. Humans have just been mostly focused in the past in regards to dominating through force. We are moving into a new age that is about knowledge instead of fear. It can be an empire in itself but historically you are correct empires have been militaristic. However, that doesn’t change the prosperity that the people of a nation enjoys when they control their own form of exchange/currency.

  • http://www.travismamone.net/ Travis Mamone

    This is why I’m no longer a Ron Paul fan.  He still has some good points, like the whole anti-war thing.  But I think a free market that goes totally unrestricted is a dangerous thing.

    • Anonymous

      Ron Paul has never said free markets should go unrestricted. States still have power to do so as do counties, cities, families and the individual. People always make the decision in markets. It is either the masses doing so with the use of their own income or a selected group of people with concentrated power. The reason free markets work as opposed to government centralized regulations rarely work is that concentrated power attracts the most power hungry and greedy.

      Government regulation comes down to this. It is giving someone else power to help people instead of helping others yourself. Ron Paul’s philosophy is the philosophy that America was built on. Freedom and Responsibility. If you willingly give away your responsibility you willingly give away your freedom.

      • http://whitherthougoest.wordpress.com/ Brad Anderson

        If “people” don’t really make decisions within corporations (the employees at large, I mean, as opposed to merely the relatively small group of investors of capital), why should we think that truly unencumbered free markets would allow people to make the decisions in society at large? What structures would ensure that? Competition? Please. If you have to have a society that is based on no other shared good than the free acquirement of wealth, and has no mechanism for social improvement other than for-profit transactions, then in my opinion you have a failure of imagination. That isn’t freedom.

        And “Ron Paul’s philosophy is the philosophy that America was built on”? Really? So why the constitution instead of the Articles of Confederation, which were much more state-centric? Why the overwhelming trajectory (long before the 20th century) of ongoing centralization of power?

        • Anonymous

          The people who make the real decisions in a free market are the consumers, either the consumer as an individual or as an entity. Corporate boards are just a player in the market not the deciding factor.

          I or nobody I have spoken and not Paul or anyone of the liberty movement has said that a society should ONLY have wealth generation as the mechanism for societies improvements. Making rediculous statements like that show you haven’t really looked into the subject and your fear of it keeps you from doing so. It is a part of it, because human greed is the underlying survival factor in life but humans have other mechanisms than greed. Government does play a key role in society but it can do much more by providing recomendations and benefits for certain things rather than taking money from one group to give to another pet group. That is what big government does today.

          We have had an overwhelming trajectory of centralized power since the age before civilization. It is power that man wants and has always wanted. The idea of decentralized power is fairly new, it happened a few times in ancient history and it is the idea that America was built upon. I do agree that we head towards centralized power but that doesn’t mean it is the right thing to do. It has lead to all forms of oppression as power in the hands of the few will always be more corruptable than power in the hands of the many.

      • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

        Ron Paul has given pro-confederacy speeches before, but I wouldn’t go so far as to call him pro-slavery or anti-women.

        But maybe you have a point, Dylbro…

  • Anonymous

    This is a worthless, incoherent, slandering rant. Don’t waste your time to read it!

  • http://zackallen.me Zack Allen

    As I see it, it is up to the American people to determine who leads them and what policies come into effect. As for the Body of Christ, we are but ambassadors from another Kingdom, resident aliens living in a foreign land, through which God makes His appeal. We’re here to do the work of Christ and, through our actions and teachings, influence those around us and infect them with the Gospel of Love. We’re not here to make decisions about how the people of this nation choose to govern themselves for this is not what ambassadors do. It is not our nation to decide, and, frankly, we don’t have time for that. There are so many more important things for us to do.

    I don’t endorse candidates and I try hard not to be too critical of the others. I will say this, however. I used to think Ron Paul would be a pretty good option. Since then, I’ve come to learn of his funky meshing of Austrian economics with Christian Reconstructionism that, to me, is troublesome. But like I said, it’s not my decision to make.

    Blessings.

    • Brian

      You are absolutely right. It is best for you to withdraw totally from politics and let everyone else decide for you. Sounds like a brilliant plan.

      • http://zackallen.me Zack Allen

        Well…that’s not *exactly* what I said. But thanks anyway.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jason.ekk Jason Ekk

    (Note:  I have not read all of the comments so I do not know if this has already been discussed so forgive me if it has… there are just a lot of comments)

    Ron Paul has always interested me.  Mainly because he seems like a man of principles.  He seems to actually do what he says (which is a rarity in politics).   As an independent who is moderate/left-leaning on most issues, I still understand where Paul is coming from.  As an all-seeing-all-knowing law student ;) taking Constitutional Law, I can see his arguments for taking down the EPA, etc…  I disagree with it… but I can see it.  

    We have to remember that we live in a country that lives under a Constitution.  If you want something done it has to fall under it somehow.  There are some good arguments for why the EPA, Department of Ed., Civil Rights Act, and many other things are unconstitutional. I dont agree with the arguments, per se.   I believe we need all of those things (maybe tweaked and changed) but they are good.  The reason we have a somewhat strong federal government is to avoid state protectionism.  If we allow too much power to the states they will begin to use economic protectionism that would end up hurting everyone in the end (if you have seen A Beautiful Mind, think of the scene in the bar where Russel Crowes’ character has his epiphany about getting the girls at the bar).  Social Darwinism/Adam Smith’s “Invisible Hand” by itself will end up hurting the whole.  There has to be a BALANCE of individual self-determination and pursuit of the common good.  It is not an extreme of one or the other but a balance of both.  

    Shalom my friends!

    • Brian

      Your argument might be valid if everyone in the bar intended to go for the blonde but it ignores the fact that individuals have disparate wants and needs. Some people like brunettes better than blondes. You also assume like most people do that governments are made up of angelic benevolent people who only want what is best for the common good. You ignore the fact that the people in government are no different than those “evil” industrialists and financiers. Government officials will always tend to act in their own self interest to get re-elected because failing to do so means losing the power they need to “help” the common man. Can you understand why your argument fails?

      I will give you credit for recognizing what most businessmen should understand with respect to the “common good” but oftentimes ignore. There is some truth to people acting in a way that is both beneficial to them and their fellow man. A savvy businessman understands that paying a slightly higher than market wage will tend to attract better employees. A wise fisherman understands the need to conserve his fishing grounds and not allow greed to overcome him. However, this is not the result of government interference but a natural part of the free market. Those who fail to understand these principles usually destroy their business.

  • http://patheos.com/blogs/thepangeablog/ Kurt Willems

    Ok Ok Ok… both sides of this dialogue are getting a bit too aggressive! Lets remember that this is a Christ focused website where in Christ we are free to disagree.  But lets keep the tone in humility and kindness.  Thanks!

    • Mike Ward

      Most of the dialogue has not been too bad. No more aggressive than the article itself. You can’t stir up a hornets nest, then leave only to come back and complain that hornet as buzzing about.

      • http://zackallen.me Zack Allen

        Actually, in this case, he can.

        And maybe we just have different scales. I’d say there’s been enough name calling and belittling to say it’s been pretty aggressive. Pretty disturbing.

        • Mike Ward

          Very little has been more inflamatory than:

          “This is a core Paleo-Conservative argument (even in Mr. Paul wouldn’t see it that way). It’s always some variant of: ‘Racism is caused by those N####-lovers always trying to shove Black People’s equal-ness down our throats. If they would stop trying to be equal, we wouldn’t have racism’!”

          And that’s from the original article.

          So the problem is there are two standards here: one for Jason (and since he reposted his article, Kurt) and one for everyone else.

          • http://zackallen.me Zack Allen

            Yeah, we definitely have different scales. I wouldn’t have worded it that way either though. I thought calling someone a “trained monkey” and a “stupid trained pig” was much worse.

          • Mike Ward

            I don’t see how you can say those are “much” worse, but regardless, I did start by saying “very little has been….”

            Regardless, it is silly to try to create a standard so fine that saying that paleo conservatives believe that racism is caused by “N####-lovers” is acceptable but calling someone a “trained monkey” is not.

          • http://zackallen.me Zack Allen

            I say that because making a generalized observation of paleo-conservative rhetoric as victim-blaming and being driven by fear (whether right or wrong) is, in end, merely an observation. Stooping to calling someone a “stupid trained pig” when you disagree with that observation is not. It’s hateful and makes you look silly. Call that a double-standard if you like, but there’s just no need for it. Especially when you’re trying to convince that “stupid trained pig” of your competing position on a matter. :)

          • Mike Ward

            Actually, I’m not calling that a double standard.

            You’ve rewritten what Jason said to make it far less insulting. If you were right, you wouldn’t have to have done that to make your pont.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            Mike,
            Were you personally offended by my statement above there? Because it’s not like I wrote it with you in mind. However, i did write it to be provacative, and I personally have no issue with that, to be perfectly honest. If you’re offended by that statement, then please ask how offended African-Americans are by Rep. Paul’s patronizing attitudes.

          • Mike Ward

            I think you need to read all my comments in this chain starting from the one that starts, “Most of the dialogue has not been too bad….” in reply to Kurt.

          • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

            I did, Mike. That’s what I was addressing.
            Again, let me ask, what about the sentence offends you personally?

  • Anonymous

    Let`s have a war on white genocide!

    Africa for the Africans,Asia for the Asians,white countries for EVERYBODY!

    Everybody says there is this RACE problem. Everybody says this RACE problem will be solved when the third world pours into EVERY white country and ONLY into white countries.

    The Netherlands and Belgium are just as crowded as Japan or Taiwan, but nobody says Japan or Taiwan will solve this RACE problem by bringing in millions of third worlders and quote assimilating unquote with them.

    Everybody says the final solution to this RACE problem is for EVERY white country and ONLY white countries to “assimilate,” i.e., intermarry, with all those non-whites.

    What if I said there was this RACE problem and this RACE problem would be solved only if hundreds of millions of non-blacks were brought into EVERY black country and ONLY into black countries?

    How long would it take anyone to realize I’m not talking about a RACE problem. I am talking about the final solution to the BLACK problem?

    And how long would it take any sane black man to notice this and what kind of psycho black man wouldn’t object to this?

    But if I tell that obvious truth about the ongoing program of genocide against my race, the white race, Liberals and respectable conservatives agree I am a naziwhowantstokillsixmillionjews.

    They say they are anti-racist. What they are is anti-white.

    Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.

    • http://zackallen.me Zack Allen

      What the heck?

      • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

        Pat Buchanan’s trolling Christian blogs now?

  • http://twitter.com/adc_t A Klenk

    Just came across this blog— is this supposed to be Christian or something? On what basis do you assume a right to things being “nice?” On what basis do you deserve that?

    When I think of monopoly, I think of AT&T— an entity legislated into its position in 1913. When I think of regulation, I think of all the crap tied up in finance. I think of the Government-supported (in so many varying ways) entities that haven’t quite panned out the way they were intended.

    You can argue from a standpoint of efficiency— I don’t think anyone truly believes that the application of force is the best possible solution— but this is merely one side of the coin. That very force is an entire issue unto itself— how does one justify oligarchical force, much less in light of the Gospels?

    What difference would it make if the constitution said we were all owed ice-cream cones every Tuesday? If the logical conclusion of such a “right” is that my neighbour must be held at gunpoint in order to finance it — or the ice cream parlour robbed, for that matter— this is force, and as a follower of Jesus I am fundamentally opposed to it.

    Rewrite your article to remove all the petitio principii and (if you weren’t aware it was present) theological framework and emotion. It’s not an argument as it stands so much as a lashing out, which is disappointing to see from a pacifistic, Christian, or merely American perspective.

    (disclosure— I do not vote and have no interest in the outcome of the next “most important election of our lifetimes”)

    • http://leftcheek.blogspot.com Jas-nDye

      Sorry, Mr. Klenk, but I won’t take orders from those arguing that taxation is coercion. I thinks it’s rather violent and forceful way to try to get across a point, don’t you?

  • Anonymous

    “This is a core Paleo-Conservative argument (even in Mr. Paul wouldn’t see it that way). It’s always some variant of: “Racism is caused by those N####-lovers always trying to shove Black People’s equal-ness down our throats. If they would stop trying to be equal, we wouldn’t have racism!”

    Hahahahahahahaha, I love when cowardly, uppity white people actually become the racists they allegedly hate.

    This is gold, watching you morons talk about what a racist Ron Paul is such that you begin to parody racism to the point that you’re donning Klan masks and shouting the “n-word”. What a bunch of pathetic little people.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_LURAM6LPYOGWDSVJUW3JYXYKDI Bob Segget

    You take responsibility for what you post in your blog.  So you’re pretty much trying to hide from the blame of slandering Dr.Paul.


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