Green Means \”Impeach\”

Thank you, Doctor Paul!

We all know the old dance: it’s a very ancient and corrupt American custom. In an election year, two candidates of the same mainstream party bitterly contest the primaries. Each tries to make the case that to vote for the other guy or gal would be tantamount to destroying the country. To attain the Holy Grail of the party’s nomination, each candidate puts her/his opponent through a process seemingly designed not only to make him or her lose, but to sully that candidate’s professional and personal reputation beyond repair. And when the dust settles and one candidate emerges victorious, the defeated candidate suddenly forgets that the opponent is Evil Incarnate and for the sake of something called Party Unity casts aside all pretense of consistency, integrity and self-respect, shifting the axis of evil to the standard bearer of the other political party and embracing the new nominee and former enemy as a long lost buddy, with whom he/she has never had any ideological differences worth talking about (this last part, sadly, is almost always true).

But one major party candidate this year refused to perform this insane dance. Texas Congressman Ron Paul fought hard against John McCain during the Republican primaries, disagreed with him on practically every issue, and was ultimately buried by the McCain juggernaut. But he refused to play the game. He was much too principled, too committed to his core beliefs — of which McCain is the very antithesis — to compromise. So when the call came from his fellow Texan, Phil Gramm (by the way, isn’t Gramm not supposed to be working for the McCain campaign anymore?), with the message, “You need to endorse John McCain,” Ron Paul politely but firmly said No.

As the good doctor later described it, the demand was not quite as bullying as it may sound. Knowing well his colleague’s stubbornness, Gramm tried to make the argument in terms of his, Paul’s, self-interest. McCain, Gramm claimed, was going to cut taxes more than Obama, so logically the Republican candidate would do “less harm” than the Democratic one. But the congressman knew that to cave in now to GOP pressure would be to betray everything he’d worked and voted for in his career. Besides, as he would later remark, “I don’t like the idea of getting two or three million people angry at me.” The decision was not a difficult one.

But his next decision may well have been. Instead of fading into the night as the glare of the media spotlight moved on to McBama, Dr. Paul chose to be a beacon of true democracy. No longer a candidate himself, Paul called a press conference at the National Press Club on September 10th to bring attention to third-party candidates and thus shine a light not only on all the crucial issues that the two frontrunners refuse to tackle, but on the extent to which our democracy itself has been snuffed out by the single corporate party with two heads and its media lapdogs.

He invited to the press conference Independent candidate Ralph Nader, Constitution Party candidate Chuck Baldwin, Libertarian candidate Bob Barr (who for reasons of his own declined to appear) and my own candidate, Cynthia McKinney of the Green Party. Amazingly, the three politicians who showed up and Dr. Paul — despite their numerous and strong ideological differences — agreed on a four-point statement of principles, opposing:

  1. A foreign policy that commits the US to disastrous foreign wars like the one in Iraq, which destroys lives and depletes our treasury;
  2. The erosion of our constitutionally-protected civil liberties, including the Patriot Act, the approval of torture and the FISA bill;
  3. The runaway growth of the national debt, which creates an intolerable burden for future generations; and
  4. Corporate bailouts and the untrammeled power of the Federal Reserve system.  

Dr. Paul in his presentation was gracious, modest, eminently reasonable. He deplored the “lesser of two evils” psychology which leads citizens to vote for people of whom they do not approve. He urged people not to waste their vote on politicians and policies in which they don’t believe. He also deplored the mainstream media and its obsession with “lipstickgate” and other nonsensical “issues.”

Then the candidates each got up to speak.  Though they are united in their conviction that the system must be changed, each presented a different point-of-view. My candidate, Cynthia McKinney, reminded people of the Four Pillars of the Green Party: Peace, Social Justice, Ecological Wisdom and Grassroots Democracy. She remarked that when she left the Democratic Party, she “declared [her] independence” from an unjust system, a “politics of conformity and control.” She added that we engage in politics “so we can have power over public policy.” Politics is, after all, the “authoritative allocation of values in a society,” and that only a tiny minority of Americans now have their values affirmed in this society, wheras most of us have our values affirmed “practically none of the time.” She urged voters to “declare [their] independence” from the current system.   

It must be said in truth that I disagree, and in some cases strongly disagree, with some of Ron Paul’s views. But I cannot help but admire his patriotism and integrity, as well as a virtue almost unheard of in politicians today: courage. Thank you, Dr. Paul!


6 Responses to 'Thank you, Doctor Paul!'

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  1. pacer521 said,

    great post — love the title…

  2. Rachel Baker said,

    I agree with the integrity and principality of the third party candidates, but it worries me that McCain/Palin will win if too many third-party votes get cast in the swing states. Don’t you agree Mcain would be worse for our country than Obama?

    • dylanfreak said,

      Now that I’ve seen Obama in action for two-and-a-half years, I can say that Obama is definitely worse than McCain would have been, because the latter would never have gotten away with what Obama is getting away with. Obama is a con-man, pure and simple… and he wants to con us again! In the immortal words of George W. Bush, “Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice… we won’t get fooled again!”.

  3. Nader Paul McKinney said,

    Ron and Ralph Fool’s Overture. History recalls how great the fall can be, while everybody’s sleeping the boats put out to sea. Borne on the wings of time, it seemed the answers were so easy to find. “Too late” the prophets cry, the island’s sinking let’s take to the sky. Called the man a fool, stripped him of his pride, everyone was laughing up until the day he died. And though the wound went deep, still he’s calling us out of our sleep.

    Apocalypse Now

  4. gmij said,

    The markets are being manipulated directly or indirectly by lack of
    controls (could have suspended trading). The purpose is obvious,
    to create fear so the white collar thugs can steal more money…. It
    is a shameful rip-off. Wall street and it’s friends are not for the
    American people and need to be thoroughly investigated for criminal
    activities at the highest levels.

    If this is a real emergency that effects the security of our country, it
    is the responsibility of Government oversight committees and the
    SEC to shut down the market temporally until the real issue can be
    assessed or fixed. In the mean time, STOP the bailout, Go after the

    What happened to our judiciary Department? Indictments should be
    streaming out with all the laws, and regulations that have and are
    twisted to steal American taxpayers money.

    America —- stand up for yourselves; your fathers did.

  5. Nice and informative.Thanks for sharing.

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