(Brandon Turbeville) With the 2016 Presidential elections fast approaching, a number of names have been tossed around as potential candidates for the highest office in the land. One of these names that has been given more and more attention from the Republican party, mainstream media, and especially the alternative media is Rand Paul, the Republican Senator from Kentucky and son of the Texas Congressman Ron Paul.
It is not surprising that Paul is receiving so much attention for his expected 2016 campaign from the Republican Party. Paul, of course, is a Republican. In fact, it may even be safe to say that Rand Paul is a Neo-Con.
It is also not surprising that he has received attention from the mainstream media considering the fact that he has made many “principled” stands, understood by anyone with a shred of political judgment as nothing more than publicity stunts aimed at boosting his growing political career.
Yet it is quite unfortunate, though not entirely surprising, that Rand Paul would be receiving so much attention from the alternative media and many activists that claim to be fighting for the rights of the American people. One would have hoped that the alternative media and activist community would be much more discerning than this but their track record, sadly, shows that the opposite is the case.
The source of much of Rand Paul’s support comes from the Libertarian quarters, many of whom are drawn to Rand because of his father Ron. Others are drawn to Paul because of his free-market fetishism and pro-Wall Street, pro-Corporate stance that allows money to act as the god above all else in society. Others still, are simply Republicans who experimented with Marijuana and realized that it did not turn them into an ax murderer. It is for this reason that Paul appeals to more than the more traditional grey-headed drug war pimps of the Republican party.
Regardless, it is a sad fact that Rand Paul commands so much respect in the alternative media and activist community despite his best efforts to betray their trust, their values, and even their talking points. During the contest for the Republican nomination, there is no doubt that many in the activist community that have a right-leaning perspective will see Paul as a better option than the other Republican candidates.
Unfortunately, a vote for Rand Paul is nothing more than a vote for the Republican party, continued warfare, and continued domination by Wall Street and Big Corporations with Big Government thrown in for the mix.
Ever since the publicity stunt over Paul’s filibuster of the nomination of Brennan to the post of CIA Director, the target voting population has been assailed with the slogan “Stand With Rand.” Although Paul’s filibuster largely accomplished nothing in terms of real results (due to Paul’s own acquiescence), the American people were told that if they wanted to stand against targeted drone killings of American citizens then they must “Stand With Rand.”
Now that Paul is suing the Obama Administration over the NSA spying scandals, we are told that if we want to draw a line against warrantless surveillance, we have to “Stand with Rand.”
Catchy slogans such as this are always a mainstay of political operations, color revolutions, and deception campaigns. The Presidential campaign of Rand Paul is no different.
Without a doubt, Paul supporters, if they are victorious, will wake up in the same way Obama supporters did – disappointed, betrayed, and bankrupt.
Below are a few reasons that I will not stand with Rand.
1.) Rand Paul supports the killing of American citizens with drones on American soil without trial.
After an epic 13 hour filibuster of the nomination of John Brennan to the post of CIA Director that was more of a publicity stunt than a principled stand against the US government’s assertion that it can use drones to kill American citizens, Paul quickly changed his tune in the wake of the Boston Bombing.
After the attacks, Paul began advocating for the use of drones not only for the surveillance of an emergency situation but also to kill the suspect without charge or trial, even if that person is an American citizen. “If someone comes out of a liquor store with a weapon and fifty dollars in cash. I don’t care if a drone kills him or a policeman kills him,” he said. Paul also stated in the same interview that “I’ve never argued against any technology being used when you have an imminent threat, an active crime going on.” Apparently, an “imminent threat” is constituted by a liquor store robbery, setting the bar for an emergency situation quite low.
Of course, Paul lied. He has in fact argued against using drone technology. Indeed, he had argued against the technology in the filibuster against Brennan’s nomination where he stated, “I will speak as long as it takes, until the alarm is sounded from coast to coast that our Constitution is important, that your rights to trial by jury are precious, that no American should be killed by a drone on American soil without first being charged with a crime, without first being found to be guilty by a court.” These statement quickly changed to “if there’s killer on the loose in a neighborhood, I’m not against drones being used,” after the national tragedy in Boston.
At best, Paul’s statements were merely one more example of a slimy politician simply changing his position at the moment public opinion momentarily shifted. However, all indications are that Paul does believe that drones can be used to kill Americans without charge or trial even on American soil and that his rhetoric stating the opposite was nothing more than political posturing for a portion of his sorely misinformed base.
2.) Rand Paul –Apologist For Greed
During the debate over whether or not to further extend unemployment benefits to millions of out-of-work Americans, Rand Paul predictably opposed the extension. That Paul would come down on the side of Wall Street, Big Corporations, and austerity is no surprise considering his voting record, public statements, and funding.
However, in the midst of an economic depression that the very free trade economics of which he is a proponent have largely caused, Paul would see millions of Americans incapable of finding jobs that do not exist bereft of the only means of subsistence they currently have.
Even more so, Paul’s arrogant and preposterous justification for his decision is perhaps one of the more insulting statements coming from any Congressional parasite currently holding elected office in recent days.
Paul stated to FOX News: “I do support unemployment benefits for the 26 weeks that they’re paid for. If you extend it beyond that, you do a disservice to these workers. . . . . When you allow people to be on unemployment insurance for 99 weeks, you’re causing them to become part of this perpetual unemployed group in our economy.”
Of course, the perpetual unemployment issue is caused by multiple Free Trade negotiations and treaties coupled with the Wall Street gambling economy, not unemployment benefit payments. Yet Paul would argue that, in the midst of a worldwide economic depression where jobs themselves are scarce and the few that do exist are well below subsistence wages, millions of Americans should simply be kicked off the roles to satisfy his free market fantasy and that of his Wall Street backers.
Yet Paul is well-known for his ridiculous statements such as the one mentioned above, however. In December, 2013, Paul traveled to Detroit, Michigan where he stated “The president plays this sort of thing of envy and he says to us, ‘You should not like the rich people, you should punish the rich people.’ I say no, reward them. They create the jobs. That’s who we work for. Anybody here work for a poor person? So you want rich people to have more money so you can have more money.”
While Paul’s assertion that making the rich richer and trickle down economics might make sense to many despite its repeated failure, Paul’s question regarding whether or not anyone knows someone else who works for a poor person can easily be answered. Judging by the economic condition of Kentucky, the person whose existence is in question would be Rand Paul himself.
3.) Rand Paul Supported Letting BP Completely Off the Hook
After the GulfWater Horizon oil spill which devastated much of the Louisiana coastline and, if some accounts are accurate, is still devastating the area, Barack Obama gave numerous speeches to satisfy the consciences of lefties and greenies while simultaneously slapping BP on the wrist for their malfeasance.
Paul, however, came to the aid of BP stating that even Obama’s tepid criticism of BP yet backhanded defense and facilitation of the oil giant was too much punishment. Paul stated, “What I don’t like from the president’s administration is this sort of, ‘I’ll put my boot heel on the throat of BP. I think that sounds really un-American in his criticism of business.”
4.) Rand Paul Appears To Oppose the Minimum Wage And Other Basic Common Sense Labor Protections
In an issue that should not really be up for debate in 2014, a move by Wall Street and Corporate interests have sought repeatedly to eliminate minimum wage laws and return the United States to a nation of low wages and an even greater gap between the rich and the poor. In addition, moves have been made toward repealing the appropriate legislation guarding against child labor. While it should be recognized that child labor protections have been interpreted in outlandish ways by bureaucrats and their government bosses to impede children from assisting their families on farms or personal businesses, child labor protections (interpreted reasonably) are essential guards against the exploitation of children in factories and other corporate entities.
Rand Paul has largely dodged the questions regarding the minimum wage and child labor protections despite the fact that these issues are extremely important to working people. At the very least, they are yes or no questions. Yet it appears that Paul is smart enough to know that coming out against the minimum wage or child labor laws will alienate him from most sensible Americans who do not view working for pennies or sending their child off to work to do the same as a legitimate way of life.
Still, through all of Paul’s attempts to dodge the issue, one can see his anti-worker sentiment seeping through. During Paul’s publicity stunt filibuster of Brennan’s nomination, he referenced the need to strengthen individual’s rights by “rethinking the Lochner case,” a case which found that New York could not limit baker’s working hours from a labor standpoint. The decision was subsequently overturned but Paul apparently believes it should not have been.
Paul also argues that raising the minimum wage is responsible for raising unemployment, anincorrect belief to say the least. In an interview with ABC, Paul stated, “It’s not a question of whether (the federal government) can or cannot. I think that’s decided. I think the question you have to ask is whether or not when you set the minimum wage it may cause unemployment.” Thus, at the very least, Paul does not support the raising of the minimum wage. Currently, however, it appears that he does not have the courage to state his opposition to the existence of the minimum wage.
5.) Rand Paul is anti-Union
Rand Paul, along with this sidekick Mitch McConnell are now attempting to ram through a national right to work law through the U.S. Congress. Although one may have legitimate issues with policies mandating that workers pay dues to unions they may prefer not to have join, this issue could be handled in a more effective and fair manner. Paul’s bill, however, attempts to cripple union membership on the national level, a highly ironic move for a man that claims that he has respect for state’s rights. Apparently Federal legislation is only good when it benefits bankers and corporations.
Such legislation is but one more step in the attempt by Financier/Corporate interests in breaking the collective bargaining rights of the American people as well as their most valuable tool to protest foreign entanglements and domestic abuses. The breaking of unions has traditionally signaled a crackdown at home and adventurism abroad.
6.) Rand Paul Supported Sanctions On Iran
In December, 2012, the U.S. Senate unanimously approved new economic sanctions against Iran. The sanctions, which were tacked onto a Defense Spending Bill, were aimed at damaging Iran’s energy, shipping, and port industry. As Economic Policy Journal writes,
Building on the U.S. sanctions passed last year , the new amendment would designate Iran’s energy, port, shipping and ship-building sectors as “entities of proliferation” because they “support and fund Iran’s proliferation activities.”
Under the new rules, the United States would sanction anyone selling or supplying certain commodities to Iran — including graphite, aluminum, steel, and some industrial software.
Rand Paul, of course, was one of the Senators who saw fit to impose sanctions on a nation that poses no threat to the United States. Still, many Libertarians and activists claim that Rand Paul is a candidate of peace, whereas his own father Ron Paul described such sanctions as an act of war.
It is important to note that, time and time again, Iran has been exonerated from wrongdoing according to international law. In addition, Iran is not acting aggressively toward the United States.
7.) Rand Paul Promotes Neo-Con-Style Islamophobia
Ever since 9/11, paranoia regarding Muslims in America and the alleged dangers they present to “us” (as if Muslims can’t be “us”) have run rampant in American politics. From outright harassment and discrimination to being subject to constant ridiculous claims regarding the religion and threat posed, Muslims in America have particularly been easy targets for the Republican party.
Of course, fundamentalist Muslims do exist. Most of them are funded by the United States and U.S. ally Saudi Arabia. That, apparently, is neither here nor there to politicians like Rand Paul.
At the 2013 Values Voter Summit, Rand Paul delivered a speech where he focused almost entirely on the “war on Christianity.” While a war on religion is indeed taking place, Paul’s claims centered around a worldwide Muslim conspiracy to destroy Christianity and impose a Muslim dictatorship.
Again, Paul’s statements are not without some grounding in reality. There does indeed exist a number of people who wish to see Christianity destroyed and an Islamic caliphate created. Of course, most of these individuals are those which the United States and its allies bankroll and use as an invading force for the purposes of destabilizing other more secular Arab nations.
Still, Paul’s presentation revolved around a perspective rooted in religious fundamentalism in its own right, typical Republican talking points, and the maintaining of a boogey man to frighten the American people into supporting yet more unjustified military action or police state measures.
Paul even stated that “In the future, I see less and less likelihood that conventional wars and armies will defeat 50 million Muslims spread across the planet.”
Although, to Paul’s credit, he did criticize the arming of the Syrian death squads and the Muslim Brotherhood, Paul’s overall message was one of fear-mongering and playing along with the irrational belief that Muslims are the greatest threat to Western society today.
Rand Paul is obviously smart enough to know the truth regarding the nature of Islamic fundamentalism the world over. Clearly, his speech was nothing more than catering to an audience of individuals convinced that Obama is a Muslim, Muslims “did 9/11,” and that the Western world must unite to destroy Islam or secular societies will cease to exist.
Clearly, the speech was more political posturing from Rand Paul.
8.) Rand Paul’s Irrational and Contradictory Stance on Ukraine
After a clear coup concocted and implemented by Western powers in Ukraine, the Obama administration is now taking the position that democracy is speaking in the Eastern European nation despite a Neo-Fascist government which is now in control. The State Department and many Congressmen like John McCain are now calling for increasing tensions by implementing sanctions against Russia and arming the Ukrainian coup government.
Despite the clear violation of international law and sovereignty of Ukraine as well as the foolish re-ignition of the Cold War, Rand Paul supports such irrational moves.
In an op-ed published in TIME, Paul wrote:
It is our role as a global leader to be the strongest nation in opposing Russia’s latest aggression.
Putin must be punished for violating the Budapest Memorandum, and Russia must learn that the U.S. will isolate it if it insists on acting like a rogue nation.
This does not and should not require military action. No one in the U.S. is calling for this. But it will require other actions and leadership, both of which President Obama unfortunately lacks.
Paul went on to outline a number of steps he would take, were he president, including imposing economic sanctions and visa bans (which Obama has already implemented), kicking Russia out of the G-8, and building the Keystone XL pipeline. (He did not explain how helping a Canadian firm export tar sands oil would intimidate Putin.) He added, “I would reinstitute the missile-defense shields President Obama abandoned in 2009 in Poland and the Czech Republic.” He griped, “The real problem is that Russia’s President is not currently fearful or threatened in any way by America’s President, despite his country’s blatant aggression.”
Yet these comments, stupid as they are, fly in the face of earlier comments made by Paul regarding the Russian invasion of Georgia only a few years ago. Then, Paul stated,
For example, we have to ask ourselves, “Who needs to be part of NATO? What does NATO need to be at this point?” One of the big things [for] the neocons—the people in the Republican Party sort of on the other side from where I come from—is they want Georgia to be part of NATO. Well, Georgia sits right on the border of Russia. Do you think that might be provocative to put them in NATO? NATO’s treaty actually says that if they’re attacked, we will defend them. So, if the treaty means something, that means all of a sudden we’re at war with Russia. If Georgia would had become, Bush wanted Georgia to become part of NATO, had they been part of NATO, we’d be at war with Russia right now. That’s kinda a scary thing. We have to decide whether putting missiles in Poland is gonna provoke the Russians. Maybe not to war, but whether it’s worth provoking them, or whether we have the money to do it.
Thus, Paul’s recent position on Ukraine is at best, a flip-flop. At worst, of course, his earlier stance as more peace-oriented and fair were merely a smokescreen for a buried Neo-Conservatism. As Skidmore writes,
So when Russia sent troops into Georgia (on George W. Bush’s watch), Paul didn’t want to provoke Russia by placing missiles in Poland. Yet today, when Russia moves into Ukraine (on Obama’s watch), he’s all for dispatching missiles to Poland to send a message to Putin. Does Paul care more about Crimea than Georgia? Or does he care more about keeping a foot on the GOP’s anti-Obama bandwagon?
Clearly, Paul cares more about the latter.
9.) Rand Paul Tried To Get Abby Martin Fired For Asking A Question
Ron Paul, the man to whom Rand is regularly compared, had a reputation for encouraging open debate. Agree or disagree, Ron Paul was always (at least to this writer’s knowledge) open for discussion and the exchange of perspectives.
Apparently, the apple fell quite far from the tree.
As Paul was leaving the Capitol for a public press conference, Abby Martin of RT and Luke Rudkowski of We Are Change, confronted Paul and asked him about his then-recent endorsement of Mitt Romney for President, since Romney was alleged to represent so many ideas that Paul opposed. Rudkowski also asked Paul about his position on the Bilderberg Group.
Paul was obviously irritated and tight-lipped about the questions being asked, pretending that Rudkowski and Martin were not even there. The video soon went viral yet, to Martin’s surprise, she discovered that RT had received numerous calls from a staffer with the Media Relations Committee at the Capitol claiming that she could be arrested and charged with trespassing for her actions. The staffer also threatened to strip Martin of her press credentials. It was later discovered that Rand Paul had filed the complaint directly.
10.) Rand Paul Is A Supporter Of Israel
Despite the hysterical rantings of AIPAC, the Israel lobby, and Zionist Christians, Rand Paul has also expressed his undying loyalty to the non-State that is Israel. Paul’s reputation as a weak supporter of the settler state is entirely unfair and only comes as a result of the fact that anything save rabid warmongering and Israel worship is considered “weak support” by Israel and its operatives.
Any questions regarding Paul’s fealty to Israel, however, should have been dispelled with his visit to the settler state in 2013 at the behest of Zionist Christian Evangelical leaders and the relevant lobbyists. Upon his return to the United States, Paul told Breitbart News “Absolutely we stand with Israel. What I think we should do is announce to the world — and I think it is pretty well known — that any attack on Israel will be treated as an attack on the United States.”
Paul has long combined more rational sentiment to stop sending American money to foreign governments with Islamophobia, Neo-Conservative ideals, and patronizing “flag-burning” rhetoric. Yet Paul’s allegedly “isolationist” policies apparently do not extend to the Zionist settler state of Israel. As Paul stated, “The one thing I’ve said over and over again is that we should quit sending money to countries that are burning our flag, and that, you know, that’s the one thing I think you’ll never see in Israel is anyone burning our flag.”
While it is true that Paul has paid lip-service to the idea of ending foreign aid to all countries, including Israel, it is also true that Paul supports ending foreign aid to all of Israel’s enemies and victims such as Palestine and Egypt before Israel’s welfare payments are even thought of being touched. Of course, if foreign aid is cut off from Palestine while aid to Israel is continued, such a policy would clearly go a great length in the direction of furthering the annihilation of the Palestinian people, with the results being obvious to anyone familiar with the situation. Paul could theoretically “cut back” on Israeli foreign aid, but by then the situation would be irrevocable for Palestinians rendering the discussion mute in this regard.
Paul said, “The biggest threat to our nation right now is our debt. This does mean that we have to reassess who to give aid to, and when we do reassess that, I would begin with countries that are burning our flag and chanting ‘Death to America.’ No one is accusing Israel of that.”
Yet again, Paul’s supposed principles only extend to select individuals and organizations.
In addition, it should be mentioned that Rand Paul recently announced his intention to introduce a new bill that will suspend U.S. aid to the Palestinians unless the Palestinian authorities publicly recognize Israel’s right to exist and declare a ceasefire with Israel.
Paul’s bill, if passed, would allow the Palestinian leaders five weeks to publicly declare Israel’s right to exist as well as initiate and declare the ceasefire. Failure of the Palestinian authorities to comply would result in the suspension of the annual $400 million in aid provided to the Palestinians by the United States.
The bill is largely seen as a reaction to the recent reconciliation between Fatah, which is led by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas, the largely Islamist organization that governs the Gaza Strip.
In regards to the proposed bill, Paul stated, “Israel cannot be expected to negotiate with an entity that does not believe it should exist, and has used terrorist tactics to seek its end.”
Paul also stated that, if the Palestinians agree to the terms, the regional peace talks “can move forward with two willing partners.”
11.) Rand Paul Seeks Punishment For Whistleblowers
While Rand’s father Ron Paul wisely called for clemency for Edward Snowden for blowing the whistle on egregious methods of spying and surveillance on American citizens by the National Security Agency, Rand has been busy suggesting that Snowden and, by default, all whistlblowers who expose government wrongdoing should serve time in prison.
In reference to Edward Snowden, Paul told “This Week”
Do I think that it’s okay to leak secrets and give up national secrets and things that could endanger lives? I don’t think that’s okay either, but I think the courts are now saying that what he revealed was something the government was doing was illegal.
. . . . .
So I think personally he probably would come home for some penalty of a few years in prison which would be probably not unlike what James Clapper probably deserves for lying to Congress, and that maybe if they served in a prison cell together, we’d become further enlightened as a country over what we should and shouldn’t do.
Paul’s stance on whistleblowers should be concerning to any of his supporters who may be worried about government abuse of power or corporate malfeasance.
12.) Rand Paul Hypocritcally Opposes Birthright Citzenship
Regardless of one’s stance on immigration issues, the Constitution clearly states that those born on American soil are considered American citizens. However, Paul, in his effort to appear tough on illegal immigration, believes that this should be not be the case.
The issue here is not so much the position itself as it is the hypocrisy of it. Paul endlessly cites the Constitution as the ultimate authority when he attempts to justify his opposition to the Americans with Disabilities Act or the Voting Rights Act, yet, when the Constitution stands in opposition to personal preferences or those of his voting base, suddenly the founding document is no longer the arbiter of the U.S. legal system.
13.) Rand Paul Endorsed Mitt Romney – While His Father Was Still Campaigning For President
Perhaps one of the biggest clues to Ron Paul supporters and Libertarians that Rand Paul was nothing more than a Neo-Con in drag was his endorsement of Mitt Romney for President in 2012. What’s more, Paul’s endorsement came before his own father had dropped out of the race.
Mitt Romney’s Neo-Con credentials are well-known so the very fact that Paul could bring himself to announce the endorsement sheds light on where Paul’s true loyalties lie. However, to do so in his own father’s face only adds more slime to the whole affair and is a true testament to Paul’s character.
14.) Rand Paul Endorsed Mitch McConnell
Although many Paul fanatics will attempt to justify the Romney endorsement by pointing the atrocious Obama alternative, such an explanation (invalid to begin with) cannot be used to justify his endorsement of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for re-election.
Even Conservative radio host Glenn Beck had trouble understanding Paul’s endorsement of the establishment Republican. When asked by Beck why he had endorsed McConnell, Paul responded, “Because he asked me. He asked me when there was nobody else in the race, and I said yes.”
Beck then retorted “Well, Al Gore has asked me to change my opinion on global warming and I don’t do that.” Indeed, this was a rarely appropriate response by Beck.
In addition, Paul’s statement that “nobody else was in the race” was not entirely true. Kentucky Republican Liberty Caucus Chairman David Adams and other Kentucky Tea Partiers were planning a primary challenge to McConnell. However, Paul’s endorsement effectively ended that idea, making Paul’s claims that no one else was in the race more of a self-fulfilling prophecy than anything else.
15.) The Secret Society Connections
Early on in Paul’s initial Senate campaign, revelations of his membership in a secret society at Baylor, the NoZe Brotherhood, were revealed along with claims that Paul had been involved in the kidnapping of woman, forcing her to kneel to “Aqua Buddha” and take bong hits. Ironically, since Paul tends to tout his religious affiliations, the groups also took an aggressive anti-Christian stance. Although admittedly not Skull and Bones, Paul’s membership requires more investigation, particularly if he wishes to have his finger on the red button.
16.) Rand Paul – “Drill Baby Drill”
Although it is true that global warming alarmists and climate change fanatics have done a great deal of damage to the national economy while doing nothing credible to improve the state of the environment, it is also true that major international corporations are quite willing to destroy every single existing natural resource and habitat area in the quest for profit.
Rand Paul, predictably, believes that there should be no restriction on the oil industry or even on the export of oil that is allegedly being produced here in order to keep the United States energy independent.
Although a blanket ban has been imposed on the export of American crude oil since the 1970’s, the ban has been skirted for many years and the United States has exported oil to Canada, China, and others in recent years.
In light of the crisis in Ukraine, however, Paul has ramped up his efforts to assist Big Oil and Wall Street Speculators in raking in even bigger profits by suggesting that we should aid Ukraine and Europe (note his support for the destabilization effort and provocation of the Russians) by “immediately get[ing] every obstacle out of the way for our export of oil and gas. And I would begin drilling in every possible, conceivable place within our territories in order to have production that we can supply Europe with if it’s interrupted from Ukraine.”
Paul has also been a strong supporter of the fracking industry throughout his campaign and tenure in elected office.
17.) Rand Paul’s Funding
In Rand Paul’s Senate Campaign, his number one financial contributor was the Club for Growth, an austerity-promoting organization that has itself received a large amount of funding from Bilderberg member, Peter Thiel.
Koch Industries was also a heavy funder of the campaign. Koch is considered to be thesecond largest private company in the United States.
Paul was also funded by Google and the American Bankers’ Association.
18.) Rand Paul Says Dick Cheney Is A Patriot Who Loves The Country As Much As Himself
In an interview with ABC’s This Week, Paul not only backed off of the tepid criticism of Cheney’s corrupt and open conflict of interest he made in a previous speech, but he made clear that he was not questioning Cheney’s motives for leading the charge to invade Iraq.
Paul even went so far as to suggest that Cheney loves America as much he [Paul] does.
For reference, Paul had stated “Dick Cheney then goes to work for Halliburton, makes hundreds of millions of dollars as CEO. Next thing you know, he’s back in government it’s a good idea to go to Iraq.”
After playing the clip for Paul, the interviewer then asked him, “Do you really think that Cheney was motivated by his financial ties to Halliburton?”
What followed was a textbook flip-flop if ever there was one.
PAUL: I’m not questioning his motives.
KARL: Sure looked like you were questioning his motives.
PAUL: Well, here’s what I’m questioning, I don’t think Dick Cheney did it out of malevolence, I think he loves his country as much as I love the country…
KARL: But you said we don’t want our defense to be defined by people who make money off the weapons. Are you suggesting that’s why we went to war in Iraq?
PAUL: No. No.
KARL: That our defense was being defined by people who make money off weapons?
PAUL: No. And that’s why I’m also saying that I’m not questioning Dick Cheney’s motives.
There’s a chance for a conflict of interest. At one point in time, he was opposed going into Baghdad. Then he was out of office and involved in the defense industry and then he became for going into Baghdad.
This position does indeed put Paul and Cheney in the same boat. Cheney was allegedly opposed to going into Baghdad and then shifted his opinion on the matter while Paul was allegedly against Cheney and is now shifted that position as well.
Apparently, Paul also considers Cheney a “patriot,” a designation that might draw the ire of many of Paul’s own supporters who see Cheney as the antithesis of a patriot.
The point I was trying to make is one similar to one Eisenhower made. He said that the military-industrial complex — beware, because then they could be influencing policy by people who make money off government contracts. I wasn’t intending really to impugn his personal motives. I think he is a patriot as much as anyone else, and wants what’s best for the country. I don’t always agree with him, but I don’t question his motives.
It is also very interesting indeed that Paul would say that Cheney loves America as much as he does. Cheney is, after all, a man who was heavily implicated in 9/11, building the false case for war in Iraq, torture, illegal wiretapping and surveillance of both American citizens and foreigners, various corrupt deals with Halliburton, indefinite detention, and illegal expansion of presidential power among many many other crimes.
As The Atlantic writes,
Dick Cheney was a self-aggrandizing criminal who used his knowledge as a Washington insider to subvert both informed public debate about matters of war and peace and to manipulate presidential decision-making, sometimes in ways that angered even George W. Bush.
According to Rand Paul, however, this self-aggrandizing criminal loves America every bit as much as he does. This statement in and of itself should worry any American who may be tempted to support Rand in his run for the presidency.
19.) Rand Paul Endorsed Susan Collins
In yet another example of Rand Paul’s contradictory behavior, it was revealed by Ben Swann that the Kentucky Senator may very well have attempted to kill the campaign of a “Liberty Democrat” for U.S. Senate in Maine.
At the very least, Paul was painfully ignorant of both the positions of the candidate he endorsed as well as the positions of the one he did not.
Given the track record of Paul, however, it is much more likely that he was fully aware that Republican incumbent Susan Collins was a supporter of NSA spying and domestic wiretapping, the PATRIOT ACT, as well as a tacit supporter of torture.
That being said, before taking the stage to endorse Collins, Paul spoke to the Portland Herald Press where he stated “I whole-heartedly endorse Senator Collins for re-election. I think she is doing a great job for Maine and for the country.” However, when Paul was forced to address Collins’ stance on the NSA scandal, he responded by stating “I don’t really know, exactly, what her position is on the NSA; you’d have to ask her about that.”
Yet if Paul was incapable of doing even 20 minutes worth of research before “wholeheartedly endorsing” a candidate, Ben Swann was able to do that research for him. As Swann reports, Collins’ record is less than rousing for anyone who supports basic liberty and human freedom. Swann provides a sample of Collins record by pointing out that:
Collins voted YES on extending the PATRIOT Act’s roving wiretaps in February of 2011.
Voted NO on requiring a FISA court warrant to monitor US-to-foreign calls. (Feb 2008)
Voted YES on removing need for FISA warrant for wiretapping abroad. (Aug 2007)
Voted NO on preserving habeas corpus for Guantanamo detainees. (Sep 2006)
Voted NO on requiring CIA reports on detainees & interrogation methods. (Sep 2006)
Voted YES on reauthorizing the PATRIOT Act. (Mar 2006)
Voted YES on extending the PATRIOT Act’s wiretap provision. (Dec 2005)
Based on this history, Swann asked “why Senator Rand Paul, who is building his campaign largely on the issue of NSA spying and the restoration of Constitutional rights and civil liberties, would say Susan Collins ‘is doing a great job for Maine and for the country.’”
The Democratic candidate, Sheena Bellows, maintained a much better stance on these issues than Collins. Bellows opposed these policies, believed that Edward Snowden is a hero, and also believed that the Whistleblower Protection Act should be amended to include government contractors.
Bellows was interviewed by Ben Swann who allowed her to further explain her position on the issues mentioned above. In the interview, she stated that “Both of the oversight commissions (on NSA Spying) found that in reports in December and January that this mass bulk data collection by the NSA had not stopped a single incident of terrorism. So not only is it undermining our liberties but it doesn’t work. It doesn’t make any sense. Its big brother at its worst.”
In regards to Edward Snowden, she responded that,
I do think he should be protected under the Whistleblower Protection Act, and I am glad that you brought that up because the problem under our laws what he did is not protected as a whistleblower action and so even Daniel Ellsberg has said that what his ability to be a whistleblower with the Pentagon Papers would not be protected today. We have undermined protections for whistleblowers to the extent where it is a crime to tell the truth.
. . . . .
You demand that they [individuals who have lied to Congress about wiretapping programs] be fired and I think that there should be penalties for lying to Congress and they should be enforced. I think there should be serious penalties for lying and rewards for whistleblowers.
This is a much better position than both Collins and Rand Paul himself, who recently stated that Snowden should receive prison time for his actions.
Bellows also supported the legalization of marijuana. She stated in her interview with Swann that
I support legalization. I think the war on drugs has utterly failed. We see that we incarcerate more people than any other country in the world, more people per capita than any other country in the world and to what end? We are sending billions of dollars to lock people up for activities they engage in in their own time. There are industrial uses for hemp, medicinal uses for marijuana. I think its time we take a new approach to drug laws and its time to restore our individual liberties.
This is by no means the first time Rand Paul has endorsed an establishment Republican over a candidate that embodies the liberty-based principles that many Libertarians espouse. In 2013, Paul endorsed Mitch McConnell over David Adams. In 2012, Paul endorsed Mitt Romney over his own father, Ron Paul.
Since Paul has cast himself as one of the philosophical “brains” in Congress as well as an expert in Constitutional law and the role of government, he cannot be assumed to have simply overlooked important positions such as those mentioned in this article when he was deciding on which candidate to endorse.
Indeed, the question is not so much Rand Paul’s brains as it is Rand Paul’s character.
With this most recent in a long list of betrayals, it is safe to assume that Paul is just another Republican or that he is simply playing political games in order to get elected.
Either way, he is clearly not being truthful with those who support him and this fact, by very definition, speaks volume to the true character of Rand Paul.
More accurately, it speaks to the lack of it.
20.) Rand Paul Signed Tom Cotton’s Letter Rejecting Any Nuclear Deal with Iran
Once again demonstrating where his true allegiances lie, Rand Paul firmly took the side of the Israeli lobby and the frothing war-mongering Neo-Cons when he added his name to the list of signatures procured by freshman Senator Tom Cotton regarding a possible nuclear deal with Iran.
While the idea that Iran should be forced to make a nuclear deal with the United States is preposterous to begin with since Iran is a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty already and has every right to pursue a peaceful nuclear program, many warmongers are clearly not even satisfied with the subservient cooperation that Iran is willing to provide in this regard.
This is the basis for Tom Cotton’s embarrassingly patronizing letter to the Iranian government which was solely designed to wreck any opportunity to avoid military conflict and make the potential for war that much greater. Essentially, the letter warned Iran that it had better agree to the unreasonable demands set forth by Congressional Republicans in order to avoid US military action and that any other deal signed or agreed to with Barack Obama would be quickly shredded after Obama leaves office. While the letter does some legitimate have a point in regards to the specific treaty process, the letter itself is potentially illegal.
By signing this letter, Rand Paul once again showed himself to be nothing more than a warmonger, neo-conservative in conservative clothing, and a toady for the same forces that control his colleagues in the Senate.
In the end, this article only contains 20 legitimate reasons not to support or vote for Rand Paul in his upcoming Presidential bid. There are, of course, many more.
Paul’s Democratic opponents, if he wins the Republican nomination, will no doubt be yet another Wall Street Democrat who is pro-war, anti-gun, and anti-freedom in general. But do not be fooled. Do not be treated like a tennis ball getting hammered back and forth from one player to another. Democrats and Republicans have been at the helm for far too long and there has never been a shred of difference between them or the results that their administrations have produced.
Rand Paul is no different.
While it is unlikely that a real candidate of the people will arise to make 2016 the year that Americans rose up and brought a true benevolent leader into power, let it at least be the year that Americans were determined to stop being dupes.