Friday, December 9, 2011

Taking Another Look

I've had a number of people tell me in the past 3-4 weeks that they're taking another look at the Republican candidates.  This isn't actually surprising, it seems that we've all been taking a close look at some of the candidates, one by one as they parade to the top of the polls.  First it was a Bachmann surge, then Perry, then Cain and now Gingrich.  It seems like everytime the primary voters get a close look at the latest front-runner they find some glaring thing that is unattractive.  Through it all Romney and Paul have been steadfastly in the mix alternating 2nd and 3rd depending on the state and the week. 

For Romney there is this undercurrent that he's not well liked by the primary voters.  That they're searching for any alternative to his more Progressive liberal past.  Sure, he says his political views have changed, but even what those views are is confusing to a lot of people.  I understand changing positions.  I was once a very staunch supporter of Government sponsored corporate dominion, though I didn't see it in those terms.  I saw it as government using corporate America to further social goals as opposed to having government try to do it on its own, but that's a different topic.

What I did not expect is that a half dozen or so people have told me a variation of this statement:  "I'd always heard that Ron Paul was way out there, too extreme to be President, but when I listen to him, he makes a lot of sense."  Ron Paul's candidacy has been, from the beginning, treated like a joke by many in the media.  Take this segment from the Daily Show.  On Wednesday the Republican Jewish Coalition held a forum for the candidates explicitly excluding Ron Paul because in their words, "they reject his extreme views."  I wonder if they mean the views that said we should stop mandating what Israel does within its borders, that we should not set the beginning points of Peace negotiations with the Palestinian Authority beyond what Israel is willing to accept as a final resolution, that we should not give Israel financial aid and then give Israel's enemies a combined 3 times as much in aid.  Ron Paul's stance on Israel is that we be an ally and not treat Israel like a vassal state.  These stances are too extreme for the Republican Jewish Coalition. 

So, when people have come to me to talk about this race, they are saying more and more, "They've got this guy wrong, don't they?"  Yes, yes they do.  When Newt starts to become Newt again, when he self destructs once more and it's time for you to take another look.  Do it with your own eyes and ears this time.  Listen to what the man has to say.  There is plenty of available content for your perusal.  There are probably more Ron Paul videos on You Tube than there are copy-right infringing music videos and dumb cat trick videos combined, and that's saying something.

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