Is Ron Paul a Madman or a Misunderstood Genius?

Ron Paul wants to be a republican president. Is he a misunderstood genius? Or is he simply a madman feigning lucidity?


I watched Ron Paul on Meet the Press where he claimed Abraham Lincoln should not have tried to end slavery by starting the Civil War:

“Six-hundred-thousand Americans died in the senseless Civil War,” he said. “No, he should not have gone to war. He did this just to enhance and get rid of the original tenet of the Republic,” he told NBC’s Tim Russert. “Slavery was phased out in every other country in the world,” Paul continued, responding to the question if America would still have slavery had there not been the Civil War. 

“The way I’m proposing that it should have been done is do it like the British Empire did — you buy the slaves and release them. How much would that cost compared to killing 600,000 Americans?… I mean, that doesn’t sound too radical to me. That sounds like a pretty reasonable approach.”

Here’s video of that appearance. Is Ron Paul right about the Civil War? Was the way to avoid all those deaths simply to have the government buy the enslaved and set them free? Some believe the Civil War was not about slavery, but rather about state rights. Are those believers madder than Ron Paul? 

After Paul’s appearance on Meet the Press, some of his past newsletter activism came into view and accusations of Racism were leveled against the candidate:
Paul’s alliance with neo-Confederates helps explain the views his newsletters have long espoused on race. Take, for instance, a special issue of the Ron Paul Political Report, published in June 1992, dedicated to explaining the Los Angeles riots of that year. “Order was only restored in L.A. when it came time for the blacks to pick up their welfare checks three days after rioting began,” read one typical passage. 

According to the newsletter, the looting was a natural byproduct of government indulging the black community with “‘civil rights,’ quotas, mandated hiring preferences, set-asides for government contracts, gerrymandered voting districts, black bureaucracies, black mayors, black curricula in schools, black tv shows, black tv anchors, hate crime laws, and public humiliation for anyone who dares question the black agenda.” It also denounced “the media” for believing that “America’s number one need is an unlimited white checking account for underclass blacks.”… In June 1991, an entry on racial disturbances in Washington, DC’s Adams Morgan neighborhood was titled, “Animals Take Over the D.C. Zoo.” 

“This is only the first skirmish in the race war of the 1990s,” the newsletter predicted. In an October 1992 item about urban crime, the newsletter’s author–presumably Paul–wrote, “I’ve urged everyone in my family to know how to use a gun in self defense. For the animals are coming.” That same year, a newsletter described the aftermath of a basketball game in which “blacks poured into the streets of Chicago in celebration. How to celebrate? How else? 

They broke the windows of stores to loot.” The newsletter inveighed against liberals who “want to keep white America from taking action against black crime and welfare,” adding, “Jury verdicts, basketball games, and even music are enough to set off black rage, it seems.” Martin Luther King Jr. earned special ire from Paul’s newsletters, which attacked the civil rights leader frequently, often to justify opposition to the federal holiday named after him. (“What an infamy Ronald Reagan approved it!” one newsletter complained in 1990. “We can thank him for our annual Hate Whitey Day.”) 

In the early 1990s, newsletters attacked the “X-Rated Martin Luther King” as a “world-class philanderer who beat up his paramours,” “seduced underage girls and boys,” and “made a pass at” fellow civil rights leader Ralph Abernathy. One newsletter ridiculed black activists who wanted to rename New York City after King, suggesting that “Welfaria,” “Zooville,” “Rapetown,” “Dirtburg,” and “Lazyopolis” were better alternatives. The same year, King was described as “a comsymp, if not an actual party member, and the man who replaced the evil of forced segregation with the evil of forced integration.”

Blacks weren’t the only minority to take on the wrath of Ron Paul’s publications. Gays and Jews were also similarly bashed. 

Even if Ron Paul didn’t write all that hate, those words were still published under his name, and sustained by his philosophical banner, and so today he must answer for those accusations if he ever hopes to become president or more than a leader of insane notions. Is Ron Paul a force to be reckoned with in this contest for president — or is he simply a curious, conservative, totem made for mocking in a world of reasonable minds?