Friday Is Ron Paul Day!
Some time ago, I inaugurated a weekly feature which attempted to reach across the great partisan divide. Every Friday became a be-good-to-a-Republican-day. On these occasions I tried to find and feature a 'redeemable' Republican. I had in mind a Republican willing to stand up against, speak up against, and vote against, the worst president in American History, George W. Bush.
I still stand behind that iron-clad criterion, but it has been an exacting bar to overcome. Republicans willing to register early and consistent opposition to the Busheney clique are few and far between. It has been hard ('work'), but always good to find one.
But the choice has always been an obvious one. Ron Paul is the epitome of an authentic conservative. Dr. Paul stands up for re-starting the Constitution and restoring the rule of law, and defying the unitary executive.This Texan has always cast his vote in accordance with the Constitution and not whim of his party's leadership. That is how he won the nickname of 'Dr. No.' In this campaign, Congressman Paul has engaged himself in shattering the myth of monolithic Republican unity around the ethos of war. At each intra-party confrontation, Paul has aroused the crowd and outraged his fellow candidates by merely speaking truth to power. In the polling of the television audiences after the debate in New Hampshire, for example, St. Paul has embarrassed the entire GOP field
As a result Ron Paul is the Neo-Con elites' worst nightmare. Simply having him on the stage with other candidates jars and fractures the message of what passes nowadays for mainstream Republicans. It's like having a liberal or progressive head under the war-mongering party's tent. His presence reminds those in the GOP that they don't have to be militarists, colonialists, or imperialists, just because they are Republicans. Bringing the troops home can be a respectable way to support them. It's a reminder to all potential GOP voters that idiocy is a choice: you weren't necessary born with it.Last night I heard Dennis Kucinich say in the Las Vegas Democratic debate that he was the only one on the stage who actually voted against the 2002 resolution authorizing the use of force against Iraq. If Dr. Paul had been there, Kucinich would not have been able to make that statement. That's how oppositional Ron Paul has been. More courageous and obstinate than half the Congressional Democrats, Paul is a festering splinter in the Republican hide.
Paul does not play the two-face Democratic game of hemming and hawing over non-binding resolutions of different schedules of troop redeployment from Iraq. Paul is also an in-your-face rejection of the Republican nonsense of the 'Islamofascism menace' terrorism. He roasts their nuts every time he says,
Terrorists don't come here because we are free and prosperous. Terrorists come here because we are in their face, we are in their country, building bases in their land and stealing their oil.Of course I don't cotton to all the Ron Paul positions on tax code, freedom of choice and heath care reform. All of these are important. But on the issues of war, peace and occupation in Iraq, Iran, and Israel (the three I's I call them), Paul's positions are more steadfastly and dependably American than you can find among most rubber-kneed Congressional Democrats these days.
As much as I look forward to voting in California's Democratic primary, at the last minute I can see myself jumping parties by re-registering Republican - just to poke that damned elephant in the eye. With reliable Progressives so hard to find in Congress these days,the enemy of my enemy is my friend.