Vantage point

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Ron Paul on Bill Maher

Ron Paul, a Congressman from Texas running for the Republican nomination for '08 appeared on the Bill Maher show yesterday. And the exchange between them shows me exactly why American politics is so polarised, and why the Republican Party keeps moving more and more to the right. The arrogance of the blue-state-liberals in America and their lack of open-mindedness, as displayed by Maher here, shows their shallowness.

It is all very well to pour out into the streets of New York and San Francisco for futile protests against a war that is all but imminent. Such protests and flag-burning exercises are useful for soothing consciences, and nothing else. To really make a difference, there needs to be a fundamental change in American foreign policy. And it is this change that Ron Paul refered to when he said that while there is a role for intelligence-gathering, the way the CIA works, toppling governments, is wrong. Ron Paul is in favour of a strictly non-interventionist foreign policy. Maher however could not comprehend the possibility of a CIA-less world. What won Paul more brownie points from me is that he mentioned how CIA toppled a democratic government in Iran in 1953. This is a fact which the American press and public either don't know or completely ignore and assume that the whole problem started with the embassy hostages, as I wrote a few weeks back.

Throughout the interview Maher keeps ridiculing Paul for "being against the Civil War". The point Ron Paul made was pertinent. Every other Western country got rid of slavery without having a civil war. There were many other peaceful and practical ways to solve the slavery problem. But Lincoln, and other warmongers just thought of war. But then, Lincoln and Kennedy are gods in this country, and insinuating that they might have had feet of clay is blasphemous.

Ron Paul is a libertarian. And though Bill Maher, like many mediapersons who claim to be, is not. He is a paranoid statist. He actually believes that the Walter Reid scandal is the fault of big corporations "which have no conscience".

But the way he approached this interview, with a single-point agenda of ridiculing Ron Paul, shows why the moderate Republicans have been dwindling in numbers and in influence, and why the extreme right has been gaining power. The next time Bill Maher, or any of the shallow liberals go crazy wondering why that doofus from Texas won even the popular vote in 2004, they should watch this interview.

I doubt if they will GET IT, but who knows? They might.

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