Freedom of Speech - As Long as You Agree With Me
Most of this report is the usual thing from Media Matters. They listen carefully to what is said by the consvervatives and point out the errors and omissions.
Take a look at the two paragraphs in extra large print.
Ron Paul is a legitimate candidate, no matter what the voting public may think of him. He has as much right to his views as any of the others. Why is "Red State" so afraid of a difference of opinion? I won't vote for any Republican candidate but I wouldn't dream of censoring their right to speak or the right of anyone to support whomever they wish.
On the October 26 edition of MSNBC's Tucker, discussing Republican presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul (TX) and "the remarkable Paul-for-president movement," Los Angeles Times columnist Rosa Brooks attributed Paul's support to his "tapping into ... a lot of distaste for the kind of cookie-cutter stuff of the major parties. A lot of desire to have a candidate who just says whatever the heck he thinks." Later in the segment, Washington Post staff writer Anne E. Kornblut said that the "groundswell that Ron Paul has" demonstrates "a real craving on the Republican side for somebody who seems like they are being authentic." During the segment, the panel discussed Paul's position on numerous issues, and host Tucker Carlson asked: "But who does agree with him? OK, consider -- here is a guy who is against legal abortion. Just against -- he's gonna ban abortion. Very pro-marijuana, Ron Paul, OK? Doesn't believe the IRS ought to exist and is for the gold standard. So just take those four among 4,000 positions he 's taken in his public life." However, at no point in their discussion of support for Paul and his positions did any of the participants note that Paul is the only Republican presidential candidate to have voted against the Authorization for the Use of Military Force in Iraq Resolution of 2002, or that he has repeatedly voiced his support for withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq.
During the June 5 Republican presidential debate, Paul asserted that "it was a mistake to go" into Iraq, and said that "[t]he sooner we come home, the better":
WOLF BLITZER (moderator): Congressman Ron Paul, how much longer should the United States stay in Iraq?
PAUL: The sooner we come home, the better. If they declare there's no progress in September, we should come home. It was a mistake to go, so it's a mistake to stay. If we made the wrong diagnosis, we should change the treatment. So we're not making progress there and we should come home. The weapons weren't there, and we went in under U.N. resolutions. And our national security was not threatened.
We're more threatened now by staying.
Numerous media accounts have attributed Paul's support in part to his opposition to the Iraq war:
- An October 15 Washington Post article reported that "[l]ike Paul himself, the Paulites are against the war in Iraq, against the growing federal bureaucracy, against the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Education, the income tax, against, as [New Hampshire Paul supporter Jim] Forsythe says, 'politics as we've known it.' "
- An October 4 Houston Chronicle article reported, "The libertarian-leaning Paul has drawn media interest and a group of devoted followers, in part because of his outspoken opposition to the Iraq war, which has set him apart from other GOP presidential candidates."
- McClatchy Newspapers reported in an October 17 article: "Iraq, too, is beginning to split the [Republican] party base. While Arizona Sen. John McCain lost his front-runner status in part by championing the war, libertarian Texas Rep. Ron Paul is gaining traction in part by stoutly opposing it."
According to a CBS News poll conducted October 12-16 with a margin of error of three percentage points, 24 percent of Republican respondents said that the United States should have "stayed out" of Iraq rather than taking military action, and 26 percent said they would be "willing to have large numbers of U.S. troops stay in Iraq" only for "less than a year."
From the October 26 edition of MSNBC's Tucker:
CARLSON: Plus, Ron Paul joins the presidential campaign for real, dipping into his significant cash pile just as one prominent conservative website bans his famous Internet supporters. A look at the remarkable Paul-for-president movement and those who would stop it.
CARLSON: Plus, a conservative website is banning bloggers from talking about presidential candidate Ron Paul. More on the No Ron Paul Zone after the break. We'll be right back.
BROOKS: Because I think it would be a mistake to conflate the idea of Iraq that possessed a nuclear weapon with an Iraq -- I'm sorry Iran -- with an Iran that is necessarily going to use it, because I think that there are more effective containment strategies even in the worse-case scenario and because I think that there are other paths toward preventing them from getting nuclear weapons.
CARLSON: All right. We will be right back to talk with a man who probably agrees with you. There is trouble brewing in the blogosphere. Why are supporters of Republican Ron Paul being banned from a site popular with Republicans?
CARLSON: Welcome back. There is agitation in the world of conservative blogs. Beneath the headline "Life is Really Not Fair" Redstate.com recently announced it was banning bloggers from posting Ron Paul-related comments. The site bans Ron Paul posters as quote, "a bunch of liberals pretending to be Republicans." Others say the Internet is the perfect place for Ron Paul. And you can't stop him.
Who is right? Back again: L.A. Times columnist Rosa Brooks and The Washington Post's Anne Kornblut.
Here is part of the statement put out by Redstate.com. I want to put it up. It says a lot about a lot, I think.
"Effective immediately, new users may not shill for Ron Paul in any way, shape, form or fashion. Not in comments, not in diaries, nada. If your account is less than six months old, you can talk about something else, you can participate in the other threads and be your zany libertarian self all you want but you cannot pimp Ron Paul. Those with accounts more than six months old may proceed as normal."
This is a measure, I don't need to tell both of you who write in public and have public email addresses, Ron Paul is a big deal online, no?
BROOKS: Yeah, I'm hearing from his supporters in my email account.
CARLSON: Can you stop Ron Paul?
KORNBLUT: Of course, this is the reason that you're even putting him on the show is to spike your ratings, because we know that every time we write about him, hits to our website, it's not a joke. I mean, it's amazing that every time we write about him, the hits to The Washington Post website go up. They're very activist. They've raised him money. And it's sort of amazing to me, given that the real measure, I mean, I think if you measure the money alone, this isn't just a phenomenon. It is not six cranks sitting at home writing about Ron Paul. There are real people who really like him. Like it or not.
CARLSON: That's right. There are 6,000 cranks sitting at home writing about Ron Paul.
BROOKS: But, you know, actually it -- it actually is heart-warming, and I am not a Ron Paul supporter, but it's a kind of American phenomenon, and I don't mean that it's an American phenomenon that there are crazy people out there although that's also an American phenomenon. Because I don't think all of his supporters are crazy.
But I think he is tapping into something that, thank God, is still there in America, which is a lot of distaste for the kind of cookie-cutter stuff of the major parties. A lot of desire to have a candidate who just says whatever the heck he thinks. You know, and Ron Paul does that. You know, and I am -- he is a genuine phenomenon. He is not a media creation. And thank God that Ron Paul is out there, even though I don't agree with him on much of what he says.
CARLSON: But who does agree with him? OK, consider -- here is a guy who is against legal abortion. Just against -- he's gonna ban abortion. Very pro-marijuana, Ron Paul, OK? Doesn't believe the IRS ought to exist and is for the gold standard. So just take those four among 4,000 positions he 's taken in his public life. Who is at the intersection of all those? And who agrees with all of those?
KORNBLUT: Have you ever been to New Hampshire? This is sort of like rural New Hampshire or rural New England.
CARLSON: Well, I sort of agree -- I'm not sure about the gold standard but on for the rest of it.
BROOKS: You know, I think Ron Paul actually knows something that the other candidates probably deep down in their little shriveled hearts know but are scared to let themselves feel, which is that, you know, people will vote for you even if they don't agree with you on everything. If they feel like you're a guy or a gal who's got a conscience, who's got some integrity, who's got some intelligence, who calls it like you see it. Who thinks for yourself. You know, who is not just a creation of a bunch of consultants.
CARLSON: I agree.
BROOKS: And he is that. You know, I'm sure that there is nobody out there who agrees with him on everything, even in New Hampshire.
CARLSON: No, I don't agree with him on everything. I will say I agree with him on most things.
BROOKS: Which piece of that do you agree and not agree with him?
CARLSON: I'm not for the gold standard. I think Iran probably is trying to get a bomb and that's a problem. I don't think it's all a neocon plot to take over America. But I'm with him on the IRS. I'm probably with him on abortion, I'm with him on marijuana. I'm kind of, you know, I'm kind of there on Ron Paul's side.
He's going up with TV commercials. Rudy Giuliani hasn't gone up with TV commercials. He has got $5.4 million on hand.
KORNBLUT: It's impressive.
CARLSON: Are people -- is he going to have any effect in any specific state? Can you tell me quickly?
KORNBLUT: I think certainly he'll have an effect on the debate in places like Iowa and New Hampshire. Now, whether he changes the outcome, I can't say for sure. But I will say it's worth noting he's been more effective than, on the Democratic side, Mike Gravel, who you could argue is equally wacky and inconsistent. He's not had the same kind of groundswell that Ron Paul has. So it shows, I think, a real craving on the Republican side for somebody who seems like they're being authentic.
CARLSON: I would say Mike Gravel, as much as I love him, I think he actually probably is deranged and I think Ron Paul is just flamboyant and eccentric. And there is a distinction. Thank you both very much.
KORNBLUT: Thank you.CARLSON: As we prove every day