Emailing: The Texas Attack on Ron Paul by Thomas E. Woods, Jr.

The Texas Attack on Ron Paul by Thomas E. Woods, Jr.


Texas Attack on Ron Paul

by Thomas E. Woods,

by Thomas E. Woods, Jr.


On January 12,
2007, a Texas city councilman named Chris Peden told the
Galveston Daily News, "I have an immense amount of respect
for Ron Paul. Politics has a way of forcing people to go against
their core principles for political gain. That has never been the
case for Ron Paul."

In case you
don’t know, Chris Peden is now Ron Paul’s congressional challenger
in the Republican primary in Texas’ 14th District.

What happened
to make Peden go from an admirer to an opponent – and not just an
opponent, but one who is running a vicious and (as he surely
realizes) dishonest smear campaign against the very man he so
recently praised?

I have no

But here’s an
indication of just what a classy guy he is: all throughout Peden’s
campaign website, his professional head shot sits next to a silly
photo of Dr. Paul – the kind of photo every human being on earth has
taken a zillion times, but which in this case is presumably intended
as a stark contrast to the sobriety and deep thinking of Chris

That’s one of
the benefits of running for public office against a gentleman: you
can do childish and dishonorable things all campaign long in the
full knowledge that your opponent is too decent to

Thankfully, you
don’t even need to visit Peden’s website. We’ve already heard every
thought he’s ever had every fifteen seconds for years and

Thus we read:
"I think Islamo-Fascist terrorists were responsible for the 9/11
attacks; the incumbent thinks America’s Middle East policies were
responsible for the attacks." (Yes, he really is talking down to his
potential constituents like this.) The terrorists "wish to destroy
our way of life because they abhor freedom, democracy, and liberty."
We should continue to encourage democracy around the world "even if
it takes the remainder of the century."

You know what
that means – lots and lots of war. And you know what it also means:
the politician uttering these inanities has no intention of
disclosing the tiniest hint as to where the money for these
fantasies is going to come from, what with bankruptcy on our very

Being a
neoconservative means never having to explain, well,

Assuming Peden
has an IQ above 50, he knows he is misrepresenting Ron Paul’s
position. Dr. Paul’s argument, which is shared by top terrorism
experts, is that our government’s expensive and counterproductive
foreign policy has stirred up more trouble than it has alleviated.
He’s saying kind of what Russell Kirk – the founder of the modern
conservative movement, and no "liberal" – said after the first
Persian Gulf War. Good thing for Peden he’s never heard of

When the
Ayatollah Khomeini called for jihad on the United States in the
early 1980s, it went nowhere. When bin Laden called for the same
thing but on the specific grounds that the US refuses to leave the
Muslim world alone, fighters flocked to his banner. Could it be that
our government’s dumb foreign policy, in addition to wrecking our
economy, is actually making us less secure?

I’ve explained
all of this here.

We also learn
that Ron Paul, who has been married to the same woman for 51 years
and has five children, 18 grandchildren, and one great-grandchild,
doesn’t believe in "traditional family values." Peden draws this
conclusion on the basis of Dr. Paul’s votes against unconstitutional
legislation that would decide social policy at the federal level –
you know, the kind of voting record you compile when you favor the
"smaller government" that Peden himself falsely claims to

Ron Paul
"weakens our economy," Peden says, because he doesn’t believe in
supranational trade bureaucracies that can dictate tax and
regulatory policy to member states – the very thing Republicans
rightly opposed half a century ago when it took the form of the
International Trade Organization. In those days, supporters of the
free market knew a boondoggle when they saw one.

Peden says that
opposing the World Trade Organization and NAFTA is "exactly the
approach that led us to the Great Depression." Now much as I’d love
to hear Peden’s entire collection of learned insights into the Great
Depression – really, Peden has done us all a grave disservice over
the course of his career by confining his remarks on the subject to
this single sentence – I’m still inclined to stick with Ron Paul,
who could write a treatise on the causes of the Great Depression off
the top of his head.

Of course, as
the Federal Reserve’s policies lead the country and the world to the
brink of another depression, it is Ron Paul alone who stands tall as
the one politician who told the truth all these years about what the
geniuses who run our monetary policy have been up to. It is Ron Paul
who spoke truth to power, and who understood what Austrian business
cycle theory has to teach us about the inevitable devastation that
results from expanding the money supply through credit

I wonder, on
the other hand, whether Chris Peden even knows what business cycle
theory is, but if his bumper-sticker thoughts on the economy are any
indication, I probably already know the answer.

As with so many
other politicians, the message of "change" turns out to be more
of the same
. The Federal Reserve has wrecked the dollar and
inflated the housing bubble? Then more of the same is just
what we need. Or at least that’s what I assume Peden’s position is.
Like every other politician in America, he is completely silent on
the issue of money and the Federal Reserve, standing idly by while
ordinary Americans are silently ripped off year after year. Chances
are, he (again like most politicians) doesn’t know the first thing
about it. How else can we explain his failure, in the midst of a
Fed-induced downturn, to utter a single word about how we got

Over $50
trillion in unfunded entitlement liabilities is coming due in the
next few decades. The national debt keeps skyrocketing, the dollar
keeps plummeting, the prices of necessities are rising, and the
housing bubble is bursting. Ron Paul understands these issues – in
fact, he’s the only one in the presidential race who’s bothered to
bring them up.

A Martian
glancing at Chris Peden’s political positions, on the other hand,
could be forgiven for assuming that these problems do not exist.
It’s all business as usual, full steam ahead. A financial
catastrophe is coming? Why, let’s carry on as before! Is this the
Peden message that Republican Party hacks in Texas are so excited

The rest of
Peden’s propaganda is the same old establishment boilerplate, along
with a complaint that Ron Paul doesn’t vote for the pork and the
corporate welfare that Peden himself promises to support.

This is the
genius who is campaigning against Ron Paul. And not merely
campaigning against him, but misrepresenting and smearing a man with
a voting record unmatched in all of American history in its
commitment to freedom, and whose knowledge of economics, foreign
policy, and the Constitution makes him an intellectual giant among
Washington’s pygmies.

Now instead of
being honored and privileged to be represented by a statesman as
accomplished and knowledgeable as Ron Paul, State Republican
Executive Committee Chairwoman Kathy Haigler supports the city
councilman. "For far too long," she says, "[Congressional District]
14 Republicans have been denied the opportunity to be represented by
someone who actually believes in and practices the Republican Party
Platform, and now they have the opportunity to vote for a solid
conservative who will go to Washington D.C. and vote

Poor Kathy.
She’s had to be represented by a constitutionalist for 12
consecutive years. There’s some serious withdrawal for you:
twelve whole years without a business-as-usual,
platitude-uttering hack as her congressman. She must be getting the

All that time,
her congressman has been the only constitutionalist in the entire
Congress, arguably the greatest congressman in all of American
history, and a man who is loved and admired all over the world. Only
a city councilman mouthing slogans and propaganda and promising pork
and bankruptcy can rescue longsuffering Kathy Haigler from this
unspeakable ordeal.

Now I don’t
care how much you loved Mitt Romney, but no one, not even members of
his own family, compared him to Thomas Jefferson. Yet Ron Paul has
been compared to Jefferson and the Founders more times than anyone
can count. Judge Andrew Napolitano calls him "the Thomas Jefferson
of our day."

Running against him – and, it has
to be said, running a vigorous campaign that cannot be taken lightly
– is not another Thomas Jefferson, to put it kindly. It is a
forgettable city councilman who, if his campaign website is any
indication, has never had an interesting thought in his life, and
for whom the history books will not have a single thing to say.
Well, maybe one thing: how did the American people become so debased
that the intellectual and moral mismatch between City Councilman
Chris Peden and Congressman Ron Paul could actually have been a

maddening, isn’t it?

Want to let off
some steam? Then go
right now.

I’d say we already have just about enough mouthpieces
of official propaganda serving in the US Congress. Is it so much to
ask for one – just one – congressman who tells the

February 19, 2008

Thomas E. Woods, Jr. [view his website;
send him mail] is
senior fellow in American history at the
Ludwig von Mises
and the author, most recently, of Sacred
Then and Sacred Now: The Return of the Old Latin Mass
Questions About American History You’re Not Supposed to Ask
His other books include
the Catholic Church Built Western Civilization
(get a free
chapter here),
Church and the Market: A Catholic Defense of the Free Economy

(first-place winner in the
Templeton Enterprise Awards
), and the New York
Times bestseller The
Politically Incorrect Guide to American History

Copyright © 2008

Thomas Woods




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