By Dave Lindorff
It's fascinating to watch the long knives coming out for Texas Republican Rep. Ron Paul, now that according to some mainstream polls he has become the front-running candidate in the Jan. 3 GOP caucus race in Iowa, and perhaps also in the first primary campaign in New Hampshire.
Remember, we're talking about a guy who has been in Congress on and off for 12 terms, dating back to 1976. His views have been pretty consistent, and because he has run for president several times, also pretty well known. A practicing physician who claims to have helped in the births of over 4000 babies in his career, the 76-year-old Paul is a free-market advocate, an abortion opponent, an uncompromising defender of the Bill of Rights and the Constitution, an opponent of government regulation, the Federal Reserve and the IRS, and of big government in general--especially big federal government.
What's interesting is what he's being attacked for: being a racist, being "anti-Israel" and being an isolationist.
The racist bit is funny. After all, if we're honest, the whole political infrastructure of the US is riven with racism. Just check out the public schools in any urban area, where you'll find most of the students are non-white, or check out the schools in rural parts of the southeast in areas where most of the students are black -- compare the condition of those schools and the class sizes to schools in the white neighborhoods. Check out the wildly different jobless figures for whites and for blacks. Check out the (very pale) complexion of the student bodies at just about any state university, check out the skin tones of the judges on the US Supreme Court, or for that matter, the whole federal bench. Check out the racial breakdown of the nation's jails, and especially on the country's many death rows, where you'll find a wildly outsized percentage of people with black or brown skin waiting to be killed by the state.
Being a racist is clearly no disqualifier for national political office. It's just that you are not supposed to say overtly racist things, at least in public. It's fine to pass laws and push for enforcement actions and "tough" judges that end up putting most young African-American males in prison at some point in their lives. It's okay to promote a "War" on drugs that ends up creating a whole new slavery in the form of black men locked up in for-profit prisons. It's okay to shortchange minority school districts. You just aren't supposed to say you're doing these things on purpose...
For the rest of this article by DAVE LINDORFF in ThisCantBeHappening!, the new Project Censored Award-winning independent online alternative newspaper, please go to: www.thiscantbehappening.net/node/979