Being a supporter of Rep./Dr. Ron Paul for President, I tried to respond to an article I read at Wired, written by Tony Long. I was only allowed a certain amount of characters in my response, and I couldn't cut the response down enough without missing some key points.
So, I decided to post my response to excerpts of the article here and invited The Luddite (as my response) to view. It is as follows and I ask that everyone pay particular attention to response #13:
These days, our federal government is being pushed toward the warfare/welfare state, divided along bitter, partisan lines. This creates a kind of fog that is difficult to see through. The viewpoints you have selected in your article about Ron Paul display a misunderstanding that the warfare/welfare federal state creates.
I hope I can clear up some of that confusion:
1. "You can't be a good president in the 21st century when your chief concerns are the sovereignty of the American taxpayer and his right to bear arms."
Actually, the sovereignty of the American taxpayer is the sole reason for the existence of our government, to protect our rights, establish a reliable place for investment, and establish freedom. This is a fact that history proves.
And, the right to bear arms is our last resort to ensure that such an existence happens.
Nothing could be more important and a president that doesn't recognize such importance is a president that has no connection with the foundation of America or with an understanding of freedom.
2. "Isolationism is no longer an option."
Agreed, which is why Ron Paul is not calling for isolationism. He's calling for non-interventionism. There is a difference. Isolationism means having nothing to do with other countries. Non-interventionism means having nothing to do with other countries' conflicts and disagreements, yet still trading with them, interacting with them, traveling to them, and speaking to them.
3. "And this guy wants to pull us out of the United Nations."
The Founding Fathers' advice for us was "alliances with none". Alliance with foreign nations erodes our sovereignty, by dictating what we should do, who we should fight, and whom we should support. That's not the mark of a free country.
4. "Speaking of babies, his libertarian defense of individual rights doesn't extend to women, apparently."
Yes, it does, except when a woman attempts to deny the individual rights of another life – the baby. As well, Ron Paul has indicated that this is his "personal" opinion, not to interfere with denying the right to life only with due process, as stated in Amendment 14 of the Constitution.
5. "More specifically, he supports a state's right to ban abortion."
Again, Amendment 14 of the Constitution - ...nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law. Personally, I say that Roe vs. Wade is sufficient because it is due process of law. Though Roe vs Wade is federal, the Constitution does not specify that due process must be state or federal for a right to life. Anyway, I'm simply explaining where Ron Paul's stance is coming from.
5. "That's a new one on me: turning the stem cell debate into a taxpayer-rights issue...His chief concern isn't so much the morality of the research as who pays for it."
The morality of the issue has everything to do with who pays for it. Being forced to pay for a federal government program that goes against one's religion in a free country is morally wrong.
6. "States rights is a major plank in the Paul platform."
States rights are what ensures that we are a free country. Instead of imposing one ideological stance on the entire country (i.e. – conservative, liberal, socialist, libertarian, etc), state governments offer us the opportunity to have multiple preferences exist at the same time! That's freedom. And it only works if federal government stays limited.
7. "Paul says the federal government has helped damage the environment by "facilitating polluters, subsidizing logging in the national forests and instituting one-size-fits-all approaches that too often discriminate against those they are intended to help."
8. "If Chauncey Moneybags owns 40,000 acres up near the Idaho-Montana border and decides to cash in by letting the timber boys do a little clear-cutting, who's going to stop him? Paul says Chauncey can do whatever he wants to with his land. How is that helping the natural environment?"
Consider these three points:
A. Doesn’t the "common person" such as you and me own land as well? Even if our land amount is much smaller than Mr. Moneybags's land amount, how small is it when you add up ALL of the common people that own land?
Point: If you care about the environment, who better to protect it than yourself (why are we relying on the government to do what we can do ourselves)?
The more land that is owned by those who care about it, the more it will stay safe. And most people, even if they are not huge environmentalists, are going to care about the property that they own, because they have paid for it.
B. If I hold private property and you cause pollution to enter it, that goes against the law because you are causing damage to my private property. The more private property that is held, the more pollution will be penalized by the law.
C. Ron Paul has never supported doing away with government penalties for pollution nor has he supported doing away with ALL public land nor has he not supported private enterprise creating green technology. Although government should be doing something to promote green technology (I think), why are we relying on the government alone to do it (again, why not do more things for ourselves)?
9. "If there is anti-American sentiment along the East River these days, it's because we're swaggering around like the high school bully, and we've pissed a lot of people off."
Agreed. And Ron Paul agrees as well.
10. "As for military matters, Paul's objection to the U.S. invasion of Iraq was not that we ignored world opinion and attacked unilaterally, but that we violated the Washingtonian-Jeffersonian doctrine of "avoiding foreign entanglements."
Not to mention that it also violates Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution by sending us to war without a Declaration of War from Congress, which is Ron Paul's main objection.
11. "George Washington and Thomas Jefferson have been dead for two centuries. Our world is just ever so slightly different from the one they knew. Realities have changed."
Agreed. In fact, Thomas Jefferson advocated making changes that reflected new realities for new generations. The Founding Fathers even went as far as to create a system for us to do that. It's called amending the Constitution.
12. "The modern world is all about interaction, interdependence and active engagement, not isolationism."
Agreed, though I don't approve of interdependence. At any rate, see #2.
13. "Fine. I'm a fool. But when push comes to shove, I'd rather be my kind of fool than yours."
There's nothing wrong with that. Being your kind of fool is what freedom is all about. And those states rights that you seem leery of supporting are the exact thing capable of allowing you to be your kind of fool as opposed to being my kind of fool. Again, that can only happen with the kind of limited federal government that Ron Paul supports.