article part 8 (final before editing begins)
by, 12-31-2010 at 06:01 AM (840 Views)
In August 2008 on CNN Beck interviewed Penn Jillette of Penn & Teller fame. Jillette endorsed the Libertarian candidate Bob Barr and Beck replied "he may be the guy I end up voting for. I'm not a fan of some of the stuff he does, but you know what? Look, I don't need the perfect candidate." He also expressed interest in Ron Paul though he stated concern that about 10% of Paul supporters were "crazy". When Beck started his show on Fox in January 2009, be began to explore many libertarian ideas and interview libertarian guests. On the March 18, 2009 broadcast of his radio show, Beck described himself as "a libertarian in conversion" and stated "I think this is exactly where America is." When Beck was interviewed by Andrew Napolitano he stated the he was "more Ron Paul than Sarah Palin". Libertarian John Stossel had started a weekly show on the Fox Business Network in September 2009. On the radio side, Ron Paul supporter and libertarian conservative Jason Lewis, a former guest host for Rush Limbaugh, got his own nationally syndicated radio show called the Jason Lewis Show. Peter Schiff, Ron Paul's economic advisor for the 2008 presidential campaign, also began the Connecticut based Peter Schiff Show which he hopes will become nationally syndicated.
The media's newfound support for Ron Paul and libertarian ideas would surely come in useful for Paul in a 2012 race. The Paul supporters are glad to finally have a voice outside the standard left-right paradigm, and the number of supporters continues to grow while Ron Paul makes headlines. In February 2010, Dr. Paul won the Presidential Straw Poll at the Conservative Political Action Conference with 31% of the vote, breaking Mitt (22%) Romney's 3-year winning streak. Sarah Palin, who didn't attend CPAC, came in third with 7%. At the April 2010 Southern Republican Leadership Conference straw poll, Paul and Romney both topped the competition with a tie of 24%, with Romney winning by a single vote. In a Rasmussen Poll released on April 14, 2010, in a hypothetical 2012 Presidential race between Ron Paul and Barack Obama, Paul was virtually dead even at 41% while Obama was at 42%. When asked if Obama would be reelected, George W. Bush's former Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove replied "When you're running 1 point ahead of Ron Paul in the polls, that's a problem."
In the backdrop of an all time low Congressional approval rating of only 13%, massive debt and unending war going back to the Bush presidency, Ron Paul's rising popularity can partially be attributed to the desire for smaller government and the anti-establishment sentiment making waves throughout America. On the Chris Matthews show, Atlantic magazine editor Andrew Sullivan commented on voter sentiment that George W. Bush had essentially governed as a socialist by running up the debt and introducing an immenselly expensive Medicare prescription drug entitlement program. On his radio show, Lou Dobbs proclaimed "Obama may be a socialist but he's the second socialist, it was Bush who was the first socialist". In an article entitled Bush and Obama: Standards & Similarities, author Charles Scaliger wrote
Our bloated global military and unending wars aren’t the only thing sapping our national resources. Another more universally recognized peril is the towering national debt, which is now reckoned in the tens of trillions of dollars. The economic collapse of 2008-2009 led to trillions of dollars of new government spending under the guise of economic stimulus — spending that began, lest we forget, under President Bush, who pushed through a $700 billion stimulus (the bank bailout) that only made things worse. No sooner was Obama in office than he began pushing for a second, even more gargantuan stimulus package.
In tandem with these faux stimuli, both Presidents committed billions more to bailouts of select corporations, from financials to automotives, which were arbitrarily deemed “too big to fail.” The American public gnashed their teeth at such blatant favoritism, but the elites in Washington and Wall Street got exactly what they wanted, with Presidents Bush and Obama equally willing to extract the tributary payments from the taxpayers’ hides. Two years on, the economic and financial crisis shows no sign of abating, and the national debt continues to spiral further and further out of control. Not surprisingly, but rather ironically considering how Republicans and Democrats on the whole vilify each other, federal spending has increased about 10 percent per year under President Obama, and it increased at a nearly 10-percent rate under George W. Bush, as well.
For years, Bush and Obama and the 2 major parties have governed with similar policies that have furthered America's deterioration, and Americans are not happy. Martial arts star Chuck Norris wrote
“Truthfully, when the Republicans were in control of the Congress in those first six years of Bush’s…, they ran us into the ground. So the Democrats said, ‘Well, we’ll change everything. We’ll make everything better.’ So now the Democrats have control of Congress, and they run us deeper into the ground. I don’t know who to trust. I don’t trust any of them. Ron Paul is the only guy I trust.
Unlike the typical Democrat or Republican, Ron Paul's support continues to surge. The Atlantic writes
Paul thinks the government ought to be doing a whole lot less, and his constituents seem to agree. They’ve been returning him to Congress since the 1970s by growing margins.
Lately a lot of people, not just in Texas, are coming around to this view. “I’m so confident in my philosophy that I think I could run a pretty good race in San Francisco,” he told me in his Washington office recently. “What I’d talk about there wouldn’t be so much about deficit spending as about personal liberties, military engagement overseas, and the financial crisis. That used to help more in conservative districts. But everybody’s worried about it now.”
Indeed, support the the ideas of Ron Paul run across the political spectrum. Speaking of San Francisco, the candidate Paul endorsed to run against Nancy Pelosi in 2010, John Dennis, was also endorsed by anti-war progressive activist Cindy Sheehan as well as Matt Gonzalez, Ralph Nader's pick for VP in 2008.