Friday, January 11, 2008

The mainstream press is known, on the blogs, for its obsession with trivialities. A lot of blogs, in turn, have obsessions of their own --- like the hopeless presidential bid of libertarian Ron Paul. Thus, if you were only reading the mainstream press, you would be completely unaware that Paul's campaign just became absolutely hopeless. Which, of course, it was already. But more so.

What's fueling the tempest in this particular teacup is sudden publicity for a lot of ugly, blatantly racist screeds that were published over Paul's signature in the '80s (without his involvement, he claims); the newsletters have long been out of view, though well known to libertarian "thought leaders" all the while. In the meantime, Jim Henley suggests, anent Paul's own plea for his supporters to please just start talking about something else, the following maxim:

When mired in a specifically racial controversy, avoid likening your enemies to “Orcs.”
But reading the same thing, I'm more taken by who Paul is likening to the orcs who libertarian paladins-in-their-own-minds should dedicate themselves to beating back: is the time to stick together like the brothers and sisters we are, to stand side by side in this fight against the media toadies, warmongers, and Wall Street rip-off artists who stand against us, and who always remind me of Tolkein's Orcs.
One reason that the "Wall Street rip-off artists" have gotten more pernicious over the past few years is deregulation that was signed into law by that arch-Libertarian Bill Clinton, who, in particular, erased the distinction between deposit banks and financiers (put in place in the 1930s as a remedy for past abuse that was well-known back then). And the further deregulation of the Libertarian non-government that Paul wants to put in place of what we have could only empower the "orcs" even more.

Well, as a lefty myself, I'll say one thing for Libertarianism. Leftist opponents of a Libertarian state wouldn't have to worry much at all about heightening the contradictions...


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