Pubdate: Fri, 09 Feb 2007
Source: Daily Texan (U of TX at Austin, Edu)
Copyright: 2007 Daily Texan
Author: Patrick Brendel


On one hand we have Ron Paul: A little-known, unorthodox, irreverent 
proponent of peace, individual freedoms and federal frugality. On the 
other we have every other White House wannabe.

Dr. Ron Paul's druthers lie on sheets of cellulose amid an atmosphere 
of argon and helium, inside seven separate metal-and-glass 
encasements at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.

These so-called charters of freedom - the Declaration of 
Independence, U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights - have guided the 
U.S. representative throughout his 31-year political career and now 
into a second bid for the presidency.

Paul served as a U.S. representative briefly in 1976, and again from 
1978 to 1984. In 1984, Paul lost a primary bid for the U.S. Senate to 
Phil Gramm of College Station.

In 1988, Paul ran as a libertarian for the U.S. presidency, finishing 
third in the popular vote (0.5 percent) behind George Bush and 
Michael Dukakis. In 1996, Paul beat incumbent democrat Greg Laughlin 
for U.S. representative, the office he currently holds.

In January, Paul formed an exploratory committee to look into running 
for president in 2008. He garnered about 430,000 votes as a 
Libertarian in 1988, but probably won't get that many in the 
Republican primary.

But let's pretend Paul shocks the free world, wins the nomination in 
September and beats the Democrats in November (which wouldn't be 
impossible given a Clinton/Obama ticket).

Bam! Paul is president. He has his druthers, and he would follow 
them: President Paul would end the War in Iraq, stop the War on Drugs 
and save us taxpayers money. As commander in chief, he would bring 
the troops home, rather than sending them out all over the world.

"Since World War II, we haven't declared war," Paul said in an 
October interview, conducted by phone while he waited at a dentist's 
office in Lake Jackson, Texas. "And since then, we haven't won a war."

Paul said many people have exaggerated the threat posed by a nuclear 
North Korea or Iran, just as people formerly hyperbolized the threat 
posed by a nuclear Pakistan.

Using executive orders and the power to appoint judges and agency 
heads, Paul would end the federal War on Drugs.

"Government should be out of it. That's it," he said. "Prohibition 
doesn't work. It makes no sense at all. It's the states' obligation 
to enforce laws."

As the person responsible for preparing the federal budget, Paul 
would reduce taxes by reducing the size and scope of the federal government.

"The main function of federal government should be national defense, 
and we don't do a very good job at that. We spend all our money on 
the military-industrial complex," he said.

"We overtax. That's why we lost nearly 2 million man-jobs in the last 
six years. They're not coming back, because of the type of economy 
that we're running here. And that's the government's fault."

"The government should be very small: Reduce spending. Reduce taxes."

And Paul really is serious about reducing government spending. He 
voted against giving a Congressional Medal of Freedom to Rosa Parks. 
He similarly voted against honoring Charles Schulz, Pope John Paul II 
and Mother Theresa.

Paul has, though, volunteered repeatedly to contribute $100 of his 
own money in order to finance these kinds of medals - offers that 
other congressmen neglected to match. "It's easier to be generous 
with other people's money," he said in the October 2001 issue of Texas Monthly.

Paul is by no means a perfect candidate: He wants to end the taxation 
of gold as a first step toward transitioning the U.S. economy back to 
the gold standard. He feels more comfortable speaking with eclectic 
pundits such as Alex Jones rather than with members of the more 
conventional media.

Paul also wants to change the 14th Amendment to his beloved 
Constitution and end birthright citizenship.

Strange. Stranger. Unconscio-nable.

However, on one hand we have Ron Paul: A little-known, unorthodox, 
irreverent proponent of peace, individual freedoms and federal 
frugality. On the other we have basically every other White House 
wannabe: neo-cons, chicken hawks and kowtowing, bleeding-heart liberals.

Most all are flip-flopping opportunists. Not Paul. 
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MAP posted-by: Beth Wehrman