As noted here recently ("Lame and Lamer: Media excuses for ignoring a surging Ron Paul"), Rep. Ron Paul has undeniably eclipsed many of the GOP presidential candidates formerly accorded "top tier" status by the major "lamestream" media, according to an August 24 Gallup Poll.
The new survey of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents shows Paul with 13 percent support, barely trailing former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney (17 percent), with Texas Governor Rick Perry, who only recently announced his candidacy, strongly in first place, with 29 percent.
This puts Ron Paul three points ahead of Rep. Michele Bachmann (10 percent), who narrowly beat Paul (by less than 1 percent) in the Ames, Iowa Straw Poll on August 13. The other contestants, some of whom have been touted as "top tier" in the past, fade into the distance in the new Gallup Poll: Herman Cain, 4 percent; Newt Gingrich, 4 percent; Rick Santorum, 3 percent; Jon Huntsman, 1 percent; Tim Pawlenty, zero percent (he dropped out).
As reported here yesterday ("Lame & Lamer: Media Excuses for Ignoring a Surging Ron Paul") the "lamestream" media appear to be making efforts to salvage a modicum of credibility by giving some coverage to Rep. Ron Paul's presidential race, after a severe media shellacking by Comedy Central's Jon Stewart went viral last week. Stewart's satirical rant effectively used clips of various media takes on the Ames, Iowa Straw Poll to expose the uniform policy of the major media to treat Ron Paul with unique contempt by simply pretending he doesn't exist.
The blatant media blackout of Ron Paul is eerily similar to the Stalinist technique of obliterating all mention of those who have been declared to be non-persons, as chillingly documented by David King in The Commissar Vanishes: The Falsification of Photographs and Art in Stalin's Russia. King's 1997 book demonstrates the power of Soviet censorship under Stalin, showing example after example of famous Communist leaders who had once been considered heroes of the revolution but then, sometimes virtually overnight, disappeared. Not only were they arrested, tortured, and killed, but even their images were removed from all photographs and their names expunged from all documents, news stories, and history books.
A recent article in the Washington Post posited that the obstruction by the Congress of presidential recess appointments is unconstitutional. This debate emerged in light of the fact that currently, there is a backlog of presidential appointments. There are two explanations for this. First, President Obama has yet to nominate people to fill various executive and judicial branch openings. For example, a new chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers has yet to be named and there are two empty seats on the Federal Reserve board. The second reason behind the logjam is the Senate’s reluctance to confirm those nominees already submitted by the President for that body’s approval.
There is, however, a third less obvious factor slowing the appointment process. Using a potent parliamentary tactic, the House of Representatives has acted to keep both houses of the legislative branch in “pro forma” session throughout the August break in order to prevent President Obama from bypassing the advice and consent of the Senate by making what is known as recess appointments.
It is hard not to be amazed by the blackout of media coverage of Ron Paul’s presidential campaign. Had Newt Gingrich, Herman Cain, Rick Santorum, Jon Huntsman, or any second-tier candidate been performing remotely as well as Paul has, he would no longer be regarded as a “second-tier” candidate. To the credit of such left-leaning outlets as Jon Stewarts' The Daily Show and The Huffington Post, this phenomenon has not gone unnoticed by everyone.
Let’s think about this.
In spite of the extent to which Paul has been ignored by the establishment media in both of its leftist and rightist varieties, he unfailingly elicits explosive applause in every GOP presidential primary debate in which he has participated. A Fox News poll, of all places, shows that the overwhelming majority of its respondents hold that Ron Paul achieved a decisive victory over all of the other candidates in the most recent debate in Iowa. Of 7,991 “active” cities nationwide that participated in the poll, and 43,293 total votes, 27,459 people thought that Paul won the debate. Newt Gingrich came in second place — with 5, 906 votes.
As the newest entrant into the GOP presidential race, Texas Governor Rick Perry is finding some tough sledding in the early going — from a group of Republicans in his own state. Dave Nalle, secretary of the Republican Liberty Caucus (RLC) of Texas, wrote an article earlier this month on the RLC website, outlining the group’s warnings about the Lone Star State Governor, entitled “Meet the Real Rick Perry."
Nalle observed that even though Perry “may be the flavor of the day” for a lot of Republicans, Texas Republicans more familiar with his record “are a lot less enthusiastic” about his run for the presidency.
The RLC, a nationwide group, was founded in 1991 to, in their words, "restore the principles of individual liberty, limited government and free market economics to America through the Republican Party.” The group's values — personal responsibility and small government — are not only reminiscent of those of the Republican Party of bygone years, but seem to have been lifted right out of Rick Perry’s book Fed Up.
President Obama has signed yet another Executive Order, making it his 94th to date. This Executive Order creates an Office of Diversity, for the purposes of boosting minority participation in the federal work force.
The mission for the Order reads:
By this order, I am directing executive departments and agencies to develop and implement a more comprehensive, integrated, and strategic focus on diversity and inclusion as a key component of their human resources strategies.
At 5:30 p.m. on a Wednesday in June, Thomas James Ball of Holden, Massachusetts, drenched himself with gasoline and struck a match. He burned to death at the door of the courthouse in Keene, New Hampshire.
“I saw a man standing on fire,” one eyewitness told WMUR-Channel 9. “He walked around a little bit, walked on to the grass, collapsed on all fours and literally sat there and burned.”
“Several men said their attempts to help Ball proved ineffective,” WMUR continued, “partly because it appeared he did not want to be helped. ‘He just looked like he was just chilling there, doing yoga or something. It was weird. We were all stunned,’ said witness Sean Desio.”
By air-time that evening, “Investigators [had] not released any possible motive” for this very public, agonizing, and dramatic suicide. But Ball himself solved the mystery the next day, when his last words — all 15 carefully investigated, cogently argued pages of them — reached Keene’s Sentinel.
Now that the U.S. military, under the auspices of NATO, has “liberated” Libya, that country is on a path to become the third such nation to establish Sharia as the principal basis for all future constitutional legislation.
With the pen of power placed in their hands by the armed forces of the United States, the members of the Libyan Transitional National Council (TNC) has released a draft of a proposed new constitution that enumerates Islamic Sharia law as its foundation.
Sharia, which means “path” in Arabic, is the sacred law of Islam. The precepts of Sharia have two sources: the Koran and the writings of Mohammed. Sharia is the code that is responsible for the stoning of adulteresses; the caning of rape victims; and the restrictions on dress, rights of inheritance, and marital status of women.
Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, an Iowa native, won the Republicans' Ames, Iowa Straw Poll on August 13. That fact was reported by most of the national media. However, in an incredible display of conformity bias, virtually all of the major media blacked out the fact that Rep. Ron Paul of Texas came in a close second, in a virtual tie with Bachmann, with less than one percentage point difference between them. On many of the major media news shows and Sunday talk programs, the network "analysts" and guest "experts" mentioned every GOP presidential candidate (and some who are not candidates: Palin, Trump, Christie) — every candidate, that is, except Ron Paul, who had just accomplished a huge underdog victory.
The glaring hypocrisy of the "lamestream media" commentators in pretending to be objectively reporting on the event while blatantly censoring Ron Paul out of existence was too much for liberal comedian/commentator Jon Stewart of Comedy Central's The Daily Show.
For as frequently as I have defended Ron Paul against his detractors, it may surprise some readers to discover that while I consider myself to be something of a libertarian, philosophically speaking, I am poles apart from the libertarianism of which Paul is such an impassioned supporter.
In contemporary politics, and, indeed, contemporary life, it is not at all uncommon to hear partisans speak of the “philosophical” differences between themselves and their opponents. Few people, though, really understand what philosophy is. This is no criticism; even those of us who make our living as philosophers have not infrequently found ourselves divided as to the character of our craft.