Claims Require Extraordinary Evidence
by Tim Swanson
by Tim Swanson
ago, Carl Sagan popularized the title of this essay; and yet it
remains as germane today as it did when he first coined it. (Though,
Truzzi is said to have actually invented the original version
of the quote.)
Italy, With Love
GOP debate on the evening of May 15th, former NYC mayor Rudy Giuliani
suggested that the Blowback
theory, as extolled by Congressman Ron Paul, was an extraordinary
the dismay of Giuliani, Paul's statements come
straight out of the official 9/11 commission report.
2 holds many of the details that Paul tried to discuss at the
debate, and later articulated during the CNN
follow-up by Wolf Blitzer. It gives the historical background
of bin Laden, his motivations, and details the fatwa of grievances
notable assertions, bin Laden stated in the
second fatwa (1998),
seven years now the United States has been occupying the lands
of Islam in the holiest of places, the Arabian peninsula, plundering
its riches, dictating to its rulers, humiliating its people, terrorizing
its neighbors and turning its bases in the peninsula into a spearhead
through which to fight the neighboring Muslim peoples.
The 9/11 commission
notes this kind of reasoning as one of many prior motivating factors
on that tragic day, and Ron Paul merely reiterated the fact.
So if you get
a chance between PTA meetings, soccer tournaments, and $9600/plate
fundraisers, give it a look-see – it is a surprising page-turner
In both the
interview with Hannity & Colmes, as well as analysis
from the likes of Michelle Malkin, one accusation (among others)
is that Ron Paul's supporters are stuffing the ballot box; that
he is not a legitimate candidate.
Seeing as Fox
hosted the interviews, post-debate commentary, the debate, and the
poll itself, the easiest way to prove this assertion is to open
up the ballot box. Surely this could be done without a subpoena.
And curiously, none of the accusers have gone on record calling
for this to take place. Show us the chads.
why isn’t the same assertion being leveled at Mitt Romney, a mere
one-term governor of Massachusetts, who also consistently scores
high in online polls?
Paul can at
least claim to have enclaves of support from both the Libertarian
Party itself (having run for
president in 1988) as well as many libertarian and conservative
grassroots organizations around the country.
to serving ten terms, he has also written numerous books and hundreds
of articles and position papers discussing economics, foreign
theory, and domestic
issues. Is his large readership base now disenfranchised? And
need I mention he has delivered several thousand babies – can those
families not be fans of his? Maybe not, but does Fox, or
anyone, have an accurate measure of Paul’s support base?
As far as his
"fringe rhetoric," if you have read anything recently written by
Ron Paul, or heard
his speeches at Congressional hearings or bill debates, none
of what he said at the debate was a new revelation. Nor is he the
only educated man publishing this viewpoint, as Chalmers
Bovard, and Andrew
Cockburn have each discussed this issue at length.
And it was
apparent that all of the other candidates also seem to have ignored
the dozens of essays and speeches written
by Paul over the past 10 years, many of which lambaste the shortsighted
foreign policies executed and promoted by the administration and
In fact, in
a recent interview
with Tucker Carlson, Paul notes that as early as 1998 he was vocally
opposed to the invasion of Iraq vis-ŕ-vis the Iraq
Liberation Act – as he saw nothing but animosity stemming from
its execution. And as recent as this past February he asserted
many of the same points that he would later reiterate on stage in
errant claims to the contrary, Paul has gone on the record stating
that he does not blame the American populace for terrorist attacks,
rather he blames poor, historically
myopic foreign policies that motivated and inspired retribution
at a terrible magnitude.
Perhaps a subtler
reason for the visible negativity Fox and others have towards
Paul's supporters is that Paulites operate outside their smug purview,
their gates, and ultimately their control.
And no better
is this best illustrated than talk-show host, Rush Limbaugh – who
boasted on the air that he has the authority and power to anoint
the next GOP candidate.
one thing, self-righteous grandiloquence is quite another.
leveling anymore claims against a principled contrarian, bellicose
pundits and their sycophants should do their due diligence and find
extraordinary evidence. Or maybe just evidence in general.
Swanson [send him mail]
is a graduate of Texas A&M University and has never met Ron
Paul. Visit his blog.
© 2007 LewRockwell.com