SMEAR CAMPAIGN BACKFIRES
Recent Attempts to Defame Ron Paul Prove He’s Got Powerbrokers Nervous
By Pat Shannan
For several months you have watched the unfolding of “The Treatment” by the news media in its attempt to make Congressman Ron Paul go away. He continues to frustrate their efforts.
The first stage of “The Treatment” is to just simply ignore any substantial candidate who is not “anointed” by the powers behind the scenes. Anyone who ever ran for political office wearing any label other than “Republican” or “Democrat” has experienced stage one, and few ever got beyond it. (A visitor from Mars can see in one day that the anointed Republican is Rudy Giuliani and the anointed Democrat is Hillary Clinton.)
Hard as the talking heads of the propaganda machine tried, they just couldn’t ignore Dr. Paul for long without continuing to make themselves look foolish. First of all, even though he attempted a shot at the presidency as the Libertarian Party’s candidate two decades ago, he has been a 10-term Republican congressman who won the early TV debates this year with simple logic, pointing out that government must obey the law, too, and the highest law of the land is the Constitution that nearly every politician not only ignores today but has never read in the first place.
So when this bona fide candidate was cleverly excluded from the Iowa debates, he showed up anyway, rented the room next door and put on a campaign rally that drew twice as many as the paltry 500 attending in the debate hall.
Therefore, a higher level of “The Treatment” was necessitated around mid-2007, and this second stage in discrediting a candidate was displayed: that of poking fun in an attempt to make the candidate look foolish by quoting out of context or putting whole new pieces of deceptive text in his mouth that he never said in the first place.
However, when behavior sinks to a level that might provoke lesser men into swinging a punch or at least yelling a retaliatory, mindless rebuttal, Dr. Paul does not weaken. When the CNN interviewer told him that many people considered him “flaky,” Ron just used her own words to draw some examples of the “flaky” manner in which those in charge today are handling things in Washington.
On Face the Nation in early November, CBS host Bob Schieffer said, ”You are anti-war, anti-abortion, anti-drug administration, anti-Medicare, anti-income tax, anti- U.N., anti-Federal Reserve and World Bank. What else do you think government should do besides deliver the mail?”
Composed and alert under fire, Paul calmly replied that in order to be “anti” anything, you have to be “pro” something else, and pointed out, “I am pro-peace, prolife, pro-liberty, pro-hard money, and pro-states rights.”
“We don’t like $100 oil?” Paul asked and then answered, “We’ll have $200 oil if we bomb Iran.”
In June, when Paul was explaining to the TV debates audience the lack of congressional authorization of the Iraqi war and all those preceding it since WWII and the need to get out of there, someone behind the curtain at Fox News opened up Rudy Giuliani's microphone and allowed the former New York mayor to rudely cackle like a magpie. Then someone in charge of the computer buttons split the TV screen so the world could see Rudy childishly laughing while Paul made his points. A little later, host Sean Hannity treated Dr. Paul with disdain and a total lack of respect in the post-debate interview.
This was stage two at its best, and while many of his supporters sizzled and seethed at the two obviously pre-planned and well-organized cheap shots, Dr. Paul maintained his cool.
This comes from experience. In 1988, talk show host Morton Downey Jr. stacked his audience with some of the great unwashed hippies who, along with the discourteous host, hooted derisively (much in the fashion of today’s Jerry Springer Show) until Paul succumbed to the bait and began to shout back. His microphone’s volume was then turned down and that of the others was turned up—a common trick of the insiders—in order to prevent anyone from hearing anything he said over the cacophony.
Downey was the last to ever lure Dr. Paul into that trap, and the unfortunate experience must have bothered the candidate for a long time. Watching him today, we can readily see that he has learned the entrapment lesson well.
The congressman is a seasoned debater who, in addition to being unflappable, keeps up to date on every issue. Unlike the current president, he will never be one who will require an earpiece in order to be fed answers to questions, because those who tell the truth don’t have to memorize a script.
This may be the most likely reason that Paul’s establishment adversaries have found it necessary to turn up the heat to stage three. His raising of over $4 million in one day on the Internet could not be ignored, and his innate ability to turn their own words against them has only helped him gain ground, not lose it.
The time for spreading the lies has arrived. Some newspapers are printing “the extensive and well documented” facts that Paul is “dangerous” and “has ties to the neo-Nazis.”
There was never any further evidence, however, of the alleged documentation, but we can be sure that more allegations will surface.
“Liberal-turned-conservative” and talk radio host Michael Medved looks over Paul’s supporters and finds “an imposing collection of neo-Nazis, white supremacists, Holocaust deniers, 9/11 ‘truthers’ and other paranoid and discredited conspiracists.”
He has not named any, but even if this is true, “so what?” Would the other
candidates turn down any voter?
Meanwhile, Glenn Beck, another Sean Hannity/Rush Limbaugh sound-alike, is saying that Ron Paul and his supporters are “a domestic enemy” and “terrorists.” Beck claims that since the $4.2 million was raised on November 5—and they had to go back only 400 years to come up with this gem—and it is the same day when a revolutionist named Guy Fawkes tried to blow up Parliament in England, Ron Paul must be some kind of terrorist, too. Beck’s hard evidence for his case is even more irrational: the Paul backers referred to their fund raising project on the Internet as a “money bomb.”
The Paul camp is planning another “money bomb” blast for December 16, in celebration of the 1773 Boston Tea Party. We can’t wait to hear the next foolish allegation regurgitated by the media following this one-day event.
Get used to it. The attack has just begun. The fourth stage is known as “dirty tricks”—likely to begin in January where Ron Paul is hopeful of shocking them again in the New Hampshire primary.
See more from Pat Shannan at patshannan.com.
(Issue #49-50, December 3 & 10, 2007)