Bewildering libertarian charlatan Ron Paul is in the news again, and it's not for finally discovering gold in California or threatening to burn branches of the Federal Reserve in order to reduce or dependence on foreign energy sources. No, this time Ron Paul's on the hook for writing a whole bunch of really racist stuff in the 1990's, stuff he now claims he never knew was being published. O rly, Ron?
According to The Atlantic, back in the late 80's and early 90's, when Arsenio Hall was the next Johnny Carson and sweaters were at their largest, Paul self-published a series of mailings called Ron Paul's Political Report, Ron Paul's Freedom Report, Ron Paul Survival Report, and the Ron Paul Investment Letter. (But if you're having trouble surviving or being free, then what mental faculties would you have to expend on non-essential frivolities like investing and politics?! Maslow's hierarchy!) Turns out that in those survivalfreedominvestment newsletters, he said some pretty racist shit, including assertion that 95% of black men in Washington DC were either "criminal or semi-criminal," that after the LA riots, order was only restored after it was time for "blacks to pick up their welfare checks," as well as some crackpot conspiracies about gays, AIDS, and the CIA. It's like a proto-version of Shit Girls Say, expect instead of girls, it's nutbag fringe right wingers!
Paul claimed that he'd never written the offending dispatches and didn't know who was besmirching his good name by putting them out, but then TPM dug up a 1995 interview with Paul wherein he talks about publishing the newsletters. So, uh, he's obviously lying.
What does this mean to the Ron Paul campaign? Well, it means that for awhile, the other Republicans are going to pretend that they care about racism. The news media is going to act Very Concerned about this, too, and ask Hard Hitting Questions, even though we all know the answer ("Does this mean that unless Ron Paul underwent some sort of vast personality transformation, chances are one of the leading Republican candidates is an old fashioned style racist?" Yes.). Ron Paul's going to continue to storm out of interviews like your grandpa after your uncle told him to stop using negative slurs for Italians at Thanksgiving. And die hard Paulites are going to continue to claim that a vast conspiracy of mainstream media and freedom-haters are trying to keep their hero down. Meanwhile, the fact that a white male candidate and his supporters who are also overwhelmingly white males claim that they are oppressed by society will continue to be ironic.
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The Story Behind Ron Paul's Racist Newsletters [The Atlantic]