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Political commentary from Andrew Malcolm

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Ron Paul scales back hopeless effort, refuses to back McCain

He's not really quitting. He's not really suspending his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination. He's not promising victory, just to keep on keeping on. But, in effect, Rep. Ron Paul, at 72 the oldest candidate for president and the only GOP candidate to oppose the Iraq war, is facing reality.

In a statement to supporters on his website, first mentioned here early Saturday, Paul admits, "With Romney gone, the chances of a brokered convention are nearly zero. But that does not affect my determination to fight on, in every caucus and primary remaining and at the convention for our ideas, with just as many delegates as I can get." In a new 14-minute campaign video, Paul says he wants to clarify some confusion

His campaign currently claims a total of 42, 1,149 shy of the total to win and some 650 behind the GOP leader, though other estimates give him only 16. He took third in Washington over the weekend and fourth in Kansas behind even Mitt Romney, who'd dropped out. Even if he won every delegate still available, Paul could not capture the party's nomination in September in St. Paul, which is no relation.

Despite ridicule by other GOP candidates, despite getting significantly less time to speak during debates and, in one instance, even being barred from a GOP debate by Fox News although....

he'd collected more votes than those included, Paul repeated his vow not to attempt a third-party bid, which would drain priceless conservative votes from the party's nominee. "I am a Republican," he said, "and I remain a Republican." He did say he'd be reducing staff and offices.

Now, whether the 10-term congressman with the libertarian ideals, actually endorses Sen. John McCain is something else. Paul has said we should bring overseas troops home and invest the saved money in fixing America; McCain has vowed to stay overseas, especially Iraq, as long as it takes for success.

This morning Paul told one of our sister newspapers, "I cannot support anybody with the foreign policy he advocates, you know, perpetual war," said Paul. "That is just so disturbing to me."

In his website statement, Paul then alludes to probably the largest factor for his refocused campaign: He's trying to run simultaneously for president and his House seat in Texas' 14th Congressional District and faces a challenger in the March 4 primary, Chris Peden, a city councilmen from Friendswood. So Paul will be on two ballots that day.

"If I were to lose the primary for my congressional seat," he said, "all our opponents would react with glee, and pretend it was a rejection of our ideas. I cannot and will not let that happen." In a new 14-minute campaign video, Paul says he needs to clarify confusion over his dropping out, that he is just altering his schedule to allow primary campaigning in his home district and he intends to compete fully in all remaining primaries and on to the convention.

Although largely ignored as irrelevant by many media outlets, though not The Ticket, the story of Ron Paul and his thousands of determined, sometimes aggressive, usually good-natured followers is one of the more interesting of the current election season.

Virtually spontaneously, disaffected Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians and newcomers to the political process began gathering around the plain-spoken Paul last summer and with their nearly $20 million in smaller donations turned him into the most successful GOP fundraiser in the last quarter. On one day he raised $6 million online and was the only Republican to increase his contributions in every quarter of 2007.

With some 1,400 meet-up groups across the country, letter-writing and sign-waving campaigns and creative publicity stunts, they helped Paul to some second, fourth and fifth place finishes in states such as Nevada, Montana and Maine. He beat Rudy Giuliani in Iowa and Fred Thompson in New Hampshire and financed an eight-state advertising campaign.

His boosters, who worked the Internet assiduously to right wrongs and make Paul's case, maintain that a corporate-media conspiracy to ignore him prevented the former ob-gyn from getting his less-government message out to most Americans. He certainly was ignored and, only recently, included when providing poll results on TV. But additionally, his strict constitutionalist ideas for reducing the federal government and abolishing the IRS and Federal Reserve Bank and returning to the gold standard may be just too radical for a country today facing international terrorist threats and the current economic uncertainty.

Even the tone of hundreds of comments left here by Paul supporters changed in recent days from aggressive advocacy to reluctant acceptance of the disappointing reality of continued single-digit poll results.

It would be interesting if those supporters took the time here now to leave comments explaining why they think Paul never caught on to a wider audience (we already know about the media conspiracy) and what they think about his refocused campaign and their spent donations.

--Andrew Malcolm

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You're just trying to show your bosses that you can stir up readership Andrew....

I'm not participating in your "game" any longer. I have better things to do in spreading the message of Liberty that Ron Paul represents.

The funny thing is....if you wrote a story on McCain you'd probably get 12 comments and they would all be from Paul supporters saying how McCain is just a tool of the military industrial complex and doesn't represnt the "Old" Republican Plaftorm of non-intervention and limited government.

I'll out debate anyone against any candidate. I don't need to waste anymore time responding to your nonsense. I'll do it face to face.

Oh...and why don't YOU stop by Washington D.C. and debate me in person? Put your candidate up against Ron Paul. Let's see who understands their candidates stance on economics. You and your ilk just don't get what's really happening here. Ron Paul does and those who understand his "message" are doing something about it.

Fed Up

I'll put our illusion of choice up against anyone's illusion of choice. We have the best illusion of choice in the world.

And if you don't like our illusion of choice then you should just leave the country and you just go and see how their illusion of choice stacks up against ours.

Just got out of the booth in VA casting my vote for Ron Paul. Seems we lack a choice again. It looks like there won't be a lesser of two evils in November. We need to fix whats screwed up in America before we attempt to change the world and McCain doesn't get it. The dem's might get it but if elected the wedge between lib's and con's is too great to remove. Kind of sad but it is what it is and until a young Ron Paul comes around that speaks like Obama and can raise money like Ron we are screwed.

As a Huckabee supporter, I am very proud of Paul supporters being tenacious and not willing to give up the fight. I wish that the media showed your candidate more respect than it has. Every voice should be heard.

I respect Ron Paul greatly - though not always agreeing with his stance on issues - but he is passionate, genuine and I know he will continue to fight the good fight even if he does not become President.

So, I just wanted to give all Ron Paul supporters props for your commitment to him and the issues that he is espousing.

Andrew after Washington I have to say he is doing better and better all the time that I look.

In Washington even Huckabee is feeling what Ron Paul has had to endure during the entire race. That is: being ignored by the MSM , for the most part, present company excepted and fighting the GOP caucus themselves.

There are 12% uncommitted delegates in Washington that should sound some alarm bells as many Ron Paul supporters had to state that they we uncommitted for the GOP to accept them. Even worse is that in places like New York many new Republicans, Ron Paul supporters and students, were given provisional ballots which have not yet been counted. Same provisional ballots that have not been counted in Louisiana either.

That he achieved 21% in Washington is simply stunning and whatever the outcome Ron Paul has won as the GOP is forever changed and for the better.

Andrew I can not say it as well as the following blog:

I believe Doug Wead is the one who coined the phrase compassionate conservative.

Think about how this election may have changed if Louisiana had announced that Ron Paul had won as we know he did. I have not quit, I am discouraged as fighting is discouraging but I have not quit and so it appears Ron Paul has not quit either...

Thanks for the article Andrew.

I disagree with Dr. Paul prudentially on some of the issues, but he is completely correct about the Constitution and the law.

I am greatly heartened that so many people that I have found impossible to even discuss the issues with - those on the left - are rallying to the cause of restoring the Republic. I always thought that they wanted State totalitarianism. That is our hope to avoid civil war or severe repression of dissent in this country. We need to nurture and build this unlikely alliance.

Dr. Paul needs to start grooming a successor and make sure he is sound, 'clean', and that we know who he is.

If McCain is the GOP candidate, I will either have to vote Constitution Party or write in Dr. Paul.

Good recap. The economic uncertainty facing the nation is one reason why Ron Paul's fiscal and monetary policies are seeming less radical every day. We've seen what reckless spending, unchecked borrowing, unfunded entitlements programs, and unbacked paper currency can lead to, and its time to try something else.

The biggest reason that Ron Paul didn't do better than he has is that most people didn't think he had a chance. For all the focus on the most unusual aspects of his platform, he is really the most mainstream candidate in the race on the biggest issues -- against the war, for smaller government, against amnesty for illegal immigrants, and for protecting the privacy of Americans from overzealous and careless government intrusion.

I'm proud to have given as much time and money to the campaign as I have. The results weren't as positive as I had hoped, but they were a lot better than the "experts" predicted:

25% in Montana
21% in Washington
21% in North Dakota
19% in Maine
17% in Alaska
16% in Minnesota
14% in Nevada
11% in Kansas
10% in Iowa

That's a lot of double-digit finishes for a guy who usually polls in the single digits, isn't it?

Ron Paul is losing because he hates this country.I read his book and on the bottom of page 310 he calls us a nation of bombers and torturers.Go live some where else and take your neo-libs with you.You lose country hater,,,,Good,,,

I plan to vote straight liberitarian ticket and be at R.P.'s march!

Why didn't Ron Paul catch on? Well, besides the media problem, he doesn't pander to the neocons like all the other GOP candidates do. He might pander to the traditional conservatives, but I have no problem with pandering if it's about noble ideals.

In an old Beavis and Butthead dialog, the two characters (il)logically determine why Tom Petty is famous.

Beavis : How come Tom Petty's on TV?
Butthead: Coz he's famous, dumbass.
Beavis : Yeah, but how come he's famous?
Butthead: Coz he's on TV, buttmunch!
Beavis : Yeah, but how come he's on TV?

Andrew, you can pass off the shut-out of Ron Paul by the traditional media as "conspiracy," but those bigwigs know the power and influence of advertising and mass media. Even Beavis and Butthead get it, bunghole.

Ron Paul just announced plans for his supporters to March on Washington in the next 3-4 months. You want to know why his campaign isn't doing better than it is? It truly is about exposure. When T.V., print, and radio tells the voting public who is worth considering, who is likely to get the vote, there is already a huge disadvantage. When you have a debate where the "top" candidates get so much more time, the people at home think the "lesser" candidate is just there to advocate ideas but is not going to win so is therefore not worth the vote. What if the media stepped aside and covered the candidates equally, spending more time delving into their messages and the issues? There is such a thing as Groupthink, Jumping on the Bandwagon, Going with the Winner so you look like a winner - self perception is largely based on what others think of you, Mark Twain even said that. There is something strange happening in our country when people say one thing and really don't mean it - the talk show hosts like Sean Hannity and Rush say they want conservatism but then they don't talk about Ron Paul. Why not? Just because he's against the war? Some people might think some of what he says seems scary - out with the Department of Education - but, you have to look at why he's saying that, and he admits it wouldn't happen over night but it's a goal. The interesting thing is, he is an easy candidate to get behind because he doesn't use wedge issues - those issues are for the states to decide. Also, if you really look at what he is proposing, the goal is always to help people and our country get stronger. It's truly in everyone's interest to vote for him. I wish he'd get equal coverage and consideration, without the subjective wording, and that he'd have a powerhouse campaign team like the superstars have. I also wish that celebrities like Clint Eastwood, John Mayer, etc. would come out and endorse him in commercials.

Their is a distinct possiblity that our American elections have been fixed for some time (particularly with the advent of electronic voting machines). How can it be possible that two of the most LOATHED people in America emerge as the top presidential contenders. Amazing, eh?

For more on election fraud see and and look for writer Devvy Kidd's columns.

He never achieved media coverage because his ideas are above the level of intelligence of most media organizations. They aim for a 10 year old intellectual level, maybe 9. The dumbing down of America is the tragedy of the twentieth century. As a former Eagle scout, Marine veteran of Vietnam, College graduate, Self-employed contractor, investor, pilot, sailor and grandfather of 4 perhaps I don't fit the mold. I think my country comes first. I think I should leave it a better place than I found it. I think it is having it's brains sucked out and the election process is hoplessly broken by "party" politics. The media treated Dr. Paul shamfully. Had I been in the last debate Anderson Cooper would have had a broken nose. You could not recognize a good man if you had to. JOHN MCCAIN WILL NEVER GET MY VOTE. THE MEDIA WILL COVER UP HIS PAST SCANDALS (collaborating with the enemy) AND THOSE OF HIS WIFE(drug abuse and theft) === THINK == CLINTON -OBAMA -MCCAIN --- WHAT A HELL OF A CHOICE --- THE SYSTEM IS BROKEN

Why on earth would Ron Paul support a DISGUSTING creature like John McCain?

There are no debates only measured interviews...damn i wanna see these men at each others throats...Fighting for their beliefs...

THAT is why Dr. Paul is loosing

No FIGHT.....

I'm guessing the main reasons were:




Andrew Malcolm, thank you for the fair piece. True I'd like to be discussing his huge victory over McCain, Huckabee and Romney...but let's face it, he's a maverick and taking on two huge establishments....The Federal Reserve System and the Neo Republican Machine. Both are the home of some very powerful, very wealthy individuals. Ron Paul is one of the smartest people I know, from a family of smart people....he's a medical doctor, so is his son, his brother is head of a mathematics department, another brother an accountant, the last two brothers are pastors. (the paul family has brains, capable of higher order logic and abstract thought). The reason I mention this? I'm pretty sure his goal was to build a lasting movement. Winning the presidency was not the true goal. If winning the presidency was the true goal, he could have softened his anti-war message, softened his minimal government message, softened his no-entitlement message. Instead he's educating many of us that to live beyond our means is irrational and dangerous. Long live Ron Paul's message.

I voted for Ron Paul in the state primary even though I did not think he had a chance to win. I think all of the other candidates are status quo folks who will not fight for the average American. They are all special interest folks. If you really want change, you have to vote for it and not stick with the same tired old leftist philosophy that has always proved to be a failure in the past.

Andrew, you're also right that it's not all the media's fault. I didn't know until this year that the candidates actually cart around their press corp. Ron Paul's camp never did find that out, I don't think.

However, not being bought is no excuse for journalists. Your supposed to find things out, not wait for them to come to you. That's the problem. If he would have danced with a man in a giant cheque suit, your friends would have reported THAT? don't you get how light of an excuse that is?

Again, I was a front page newsman... I was editor of my high school newspaper, and so talented, I got hired before I graduated. =)

My first "big" story was tens of millions of dollars of property damage, and I was the only one who answered his phone while it was happening. I got lucky as a 17 year old, but I did good and made the front page, and never got off the front page after that.

This isn't supposed to be about me, but I remember one particular interview where this lady was selling me a load of bs, but she was good at it. I printed her quotes just as she gave them, never even bothered to question in my piece what she was saying. Basically, she said it, it was good enough for me.

I've never forgotten that. She was just a local commissioner, and no harm came of it.... but I sold out. I still to this day have no idea if she had a point, or just sounded good making it. I forget what she even said.

Anyway, after that, word got out that some new young interviewer in town was giving good interviews to people with something to say. Talk about feeling like a whore.

Word was maybe the guy from my paper who was then an editor at the New York Times would get me in...

But I was never really a journalist. I basically repeated what people told me to say. Sure, I said I was a journalist... sure, I was standing next to CNN when Clinton came to town, sure Jesse Jackson gave me an 1 on 1 interview in between CBS and the Detroit Free Press... but I never gave my readers any reason but to go along with what theese people were saying. To me, the story was what these people told me. Now, to me the story would be what they don't tell me or what they actually do after they tell me something. Not then, though. I was "one of you." I had access, the world seemed fine, what's the problem?

To think that I was on my way to the New York Times with that record doesnt speak well for the people who are there.

And just cause I told you all this, you might ask why I quit...

I was staring at the infamous blank screen one day, trying to fill 20 column inches with garbage and decided I should just be a marketer. That's what I've been doing ever since.

ps- unless you wanna give me a job, I miss LA! lol

I am not a Ron Paul supporter, but I found the tone of this article (you can almost picture the author rolling his eyes about those naive idealists supporting Ron Paul) part of the reason why Mr. Paul's ideas never really caught on.

From day one, the media, and reporters in particular -- instead of reporting on the story of Mr. Paul -- have taken a smarmy attitude that is inappropriate to their profession and a significant reason for the collapse of alternative voices in the media.

Yes, perhaps Mr. Paul's views are too "radical" given the "international terrorist threats and the current economic uncertainty" as Mr. Malcom puts it. Why not then report on the substance of Mr. Paul's ideas? Would abolishing the federal reserve aid or inhibit economic stability? Would ending the war in Iraq aggravate these "international terrorist threats"? I don't know -- maybe we could find reporters who would tell us these things. It seems that they'd rather hee and haw about the silliness of a campaign like Mr. Paul's then actually do what they're supposed to do: namely, report his story.

Mr. Paul won't be president, and I don't think I would have voted for him even he were the Republican candidate. But the attitude displayed by Andrew Malcolm, and other reporters who have covered the campaign, has done much to enlighten me on the the true state of journalism -- indeed the true state of the republic. And perhaps that is Mr. Paul's greatest gift to a disenchanted and awakening electorate.

Thank you, Andrew Malcolm, for affirming much of what I have come to realize as a result of Mr. Paul's campaign.

I think that if doctors or lawyers did to their profession what journalists have done to theirs -- prostitute it to power -- we'd have already had riots decades away.

Come on now, from day one the media referred to him as "far-out candidate Ron Paul", "long shot candidate Ron Paul". That has an effect. Other then that, hes just not a big name. I still talk to people who haven't heard of him. Plus I think this generation of republican voters is, well, dumb. All tow the party line. All love the iraq war. I say this as a conservative.

My $0.42, sorry that's $0.02 when adjusted for inflation : ) on why Dr. Paul didn't get more traction?

Americans are more scared of the personal responsibility which comes from true Freedom, than islamo-bin Laden or whatever boogey-man we are supposed to be quivering about this week.

Add on top of that the American electorate that receives payments from the same un-Constitutional structure Ron Paul would dismantle to it's original Constitutional's a no win situation.

The republican/democrat charade creates absolutely no change in the course of our country AND the future will vindicate Dr. Paul, his positions and our Constitution.

May our chains rest lightly upon our wrists...

BLOG? I am an older American. Not too long ago I had no idea what a blog was. I understand the decline of the written word as newspaper subscriptions decline and the Blog world grows. Not to long ago in order to have your opinion heard you had to make it past the editors desk to have your opinion read. Now, you can Blog. That being said, MSM is clearly fighting for the attention of its followers on a variety of medias unavailable in past elections. The internet is an amazing place to research and collaborate on any topic you can think of. You don't have be correct, reliable or for that matter informed. All you need is a computer and a internet connection and you can be heard. I would like to thank the LA Times for this forum. The article drew my attention simply because it was from the LA Times a well established source for information. Ron Paul is a voice in the wilderness. He is not a media darling nor is his message. The polls never ranked him as a contender and as such was not able to capture time or print with MSM however with the internet growing in its usage each day MSM becomes less relevent and held more accountble again the research thing. Don't believe what you hear or read in these forums until you do your research, then you will have a better idea of just how much bias and misinformation is out there. Check out for yourself the congressional record, visit the gov sites for the canidates, lobby groups CPAC for instense read the information vailaable thru the freedom of information act. Soon you will see that n honest statesmen has little chance to succed without a great publisist. Sad but true

As a Ron Paul Supporter, I donated 25 dollars twice, and like 100,000s other people I believed Ron Paul was a true alternative to the status quo.

You ask why Ron Paul "never caught on to a wider audience" then dismiss the reason right a way. The media ranged from dismissive to outright hostel to Ron Paul's campaign, and down the wire of the most recent primaries, the media would not even mention him. It went to a full blackout, so those people who tune in late, would never get the chance to hear his views.

I guess I can understand why, every time Ron Paul was attacked he would enjoy a million dollar bump in fundraising, and new people would check him out, so was better to go to total media blackout (including not showing him in the results of election returns on network TV) then it was to attack his character and the character of his supporters.

In regards to him not dropping out, the truth is many of his supports do not want to. He enjoys true energized support from many people, who still will cast their vote for Ron Paul, whose campaign has been about the future of many of the most basic ideals of our nation, and he has maintained a position that should be heard in our nation. The key point is this, OUR FAILING ECONOMY IS LINKED TO OUR FORIGN POLICY.

Personally I don't think Ron Paul should drop out or endorse Mccain, Ron Paul does not owe anyone anything, I doubt Mc Cain would ad Ron Paul to the ticket, so really whats in it for him? The only thing he owes, if anything , is to his supporters who gave him the money to run, and finish the race is what he will do.

Also the final story that is still today is not covered in the news is... Ron Paul is still standing, he is in the final three. After all the hateful rhetoric directed towards him and his supporters he is still standing. While he wont win the nomination, he was not forced to surrender his values and ideals to gain traction with the media. While Rudy, Fred and the others could not with a straight face ask for more money from special interest in order to stay in the race, Ron Paul is still standing. Ron Paul only owes where he is to a grassroots movement (that is not going away) and we would be very upset if he quit. Many people may not think the millions Ron Paul raised, or the large number of people he brought into the process is a big deal, but it is. His campaign was a true grassroots campaign brought to AMERICA by AMERICANS and the fact is, he cannot surrender his ideals and values, he must stay in the race for president as well as defend his seat in congress, this is a testament to what a great man Dr. Paul is and the power of grassroots.

Paul, unfortunately, had the right message and the right ideas, but was a poor messenger. His lack of charisma and political acumen really turned a lot of people off very quickly.

Paul could not cut it when it came to making positive first impressions and getting his message across to the public. Supporting Paul required a strong belief in conservative values, and not sacrificing those for party loyalty - which did not sit well with party loyalists and elite.

It's sad that our messenger was an old, high-minded, intellectual with limited public speaking skills and a almost senile public image. His message was so important to us that those characteristics vanished, and seeing Ron Paul was to see a political oasis in a desert that we have wandered through for 20 years.

Still being a realist myself, Ron Paul always represented a restoration of the GOP, where true conservative values voters would rise up and make a statement. I believe we have done that, but not to the effect that I would have liked. Unfortunately Paul missed so many opportunities to bring more disaffected republicans to our side by just engaging in some politicking.

His debate performances were a complete focus on high-minded conservative ideals. The amount of debates where Ronald Reagan was idolized as a barometer of conservative value should have been Paul's home run pitch - but he failed every time it came up.

Paul's platform was based solely on ideas, and high-minded theories, which in age of celebrity made Paul and non-entity. Paul always knew that the campaign was not about him, and in today's politics, that's just a losing formula.

Earth to Ron Paul and his kooky supporters. Ron Paul cannot win. Attention all Ron Paul supporters: Put all the wasted effort into electing conservative congressman and senators and perhaps change can eventually happen.

The corporate media reports on the elections like it is sports - who has the most money who has the most votes who has the nicest clothes...rarely anything of any substance on the policies or ideas...the media went OUT OF THEIR WAY to not mention Ron Paul, the day he came 2nd in Nevada the broadcasters WOULDN'T EVEN MENTION that he came in 2nd, they mentioned it for every other primary (the 2nd place winner, that is, even 3rd & 4th place, so long as Paul was not one of them). And the poster above who claims to be employed by the MSM and says there is no conspiracy, then goes on to tell us the media decided Paul had no chance, so that's why they didn't report on him. Its not a conspiracy, of course not, its just that THE CORPORATE MEDIA KNOWS BEST.

The political views were never spread in the media about Dr. Paul. That is a shame. The man has the only Conservative- True Republican views about how this country was founded and how it should be governed. He is a true Constitutionalist, believes and quotes the views of our four fathers! I have never heard of a candidate that sticks to his guns and is Never swayed by lobbyist. Dr. Paul is the only true, honest American candidate. That is why I can not bring myself to vote for the lesser of two evils to run our country for the next four years!

Not to try and start any controversy, but at the polling center when I selected Ron Paul, the machine asked me if my selection was John McCain- not once BUT TWICE!! I hope everyone that voted caught any mistake that the voting machines made and corrected it! (It was like in the movie Man of the Year- except it did not make the vote for the hilarious Robin Williams... it was for the Demoblican- John McCain) Copyright for the word Demoblican is held by me!

Ron Paul is the only candidate that wants to return the US to the Republic principles it was founded on and the bankers and media can't let this happen. Democracies are majority rule and that's what they are engineering. That is all too evident as to why Paul is not being covered and treated like any other Presidential candidate.

I am disappointed Paul said we could take the money on the war against Islamic terrorist, and "spend it" at home. No matter what your opinion on the Battle in Iraq (yes, Iraq is a battle, not a war), declaring he knows best how to dispurse wealth, puts him in the same category as the rest of the politicians.
Had he been a free market advocate, he would have been advocating the abolishion of our system of wealth redistribution. By saying we could "spend it at home", is merely approving wealth redistribution. His objection is who is to receive the plunder, not the abolishment of plunder. Sad.

Why are you people making the argument that he is still in the race and others have gotten out as if that somehow proves he has more support than did those other candidates?? No, those other candidates were just able to see when the campaign was over and bowed out, but RP is hanging on to a pipe dream that he can be President. That's the only difference. When you are getting less than 10% in all but one primary after there have been quite a few, I think its time to cut your losses and accept reality.

I don't care if RP wastes a lot of money and stays in the race. I don't expect the Paulistas to move over to Huckabee or McCain, but its just funny to see them holding on so strongly to a campaign that never stood a chance, even if it had been given all the media coverage there is to have. The reality is that the majority of conservatives do not accept the non-interventionist strategy and never will. If RP kept his domestic stance and was still willing to fight Islamic radicals wherever they wield their ugly heads, then I guarantee you would have seen a true Ron Paul revolution. America is NOT an island and that kind of foreign policy will never work for a country such as ours.

You ask me now as a "supporter of Ron Paul" as to why I think he hasn't polled well to date, but then you put the stipulation that I shouldn't use the media's bias and blackout as a cop out.

To sell the majority on people on anything you have to use three proven techniques. Aggressive marketing, advertising that makes you feel good about your choice and that the choice you make is favored by most other people.

I give as example Tom's of Maine Toothpaste and Colgate Toothpaste. No one really knew much about Tom's most excellent paste unless you went to a health food store or subscribed to Mother Earth News. But, because word and sales picked up steadily since it's inception...Colgate took notice, got a little fearful and bought out the company in 2006 for 100 million dollars. I now see it on display in my local grocery chain. Far below the rows of Colgate and Crest...sometimes off to itself in a little natural products lineup.

Early on in Paul's run you had a smug faced George Stepanapolis point out tell Ron Paul in an interview that he was not going to win. As soon as I saw that I realized that even though RP was a Republican he was not the appointed one.

Then began the rush to report that his following was nothing but spammers or botnets. When the money contributions roared in as a response to those pronouncements there suddenly appears in a Ft. Worth, TX news and television article that Frost Bank of Texas is reporting that they have lost credit card numbers and that a syndicate of theives are sending $5.00 in online campaign donations to Ron Paul's site in a test of the card's numbers. Poor little old ladies are shown asking why Ron Paul wants to steal from them. Frost Bank shut up real quick when people I know that bank with Frost wanted to know how security was breeched. But, damage was definitely done to Ron Paul's name.

Then came top of the news that banned Paul pro commenting off their site and the name calling began. Supporters became Paultards, Paulinistas, tin-foil hat wearers, 9/11 truthers and on and on.

Then to put the cherry on top of the tried and true sundae of public approval killing, one day before the NH primary the media pulls out the racist newsletters. Why it's top of the Google news search after page and for weeks.

For some reason my favorite television shows like Bill Maher, Jon Stewart and Colbert quit even mentioning his name a few weeks before Super Tuesday. It was more than obvious and uncomfortable to watch anymore.

And so I sit here at my computer typing to you a reason where you already know the answer.

Oh, but for a couple of feel good fuzzy airtime moments on 60 Minutes, showing this kindly 72 year old ob-gyn, who delivered little baby Selena. A man that takes care of his district constituents by addressing their needs and concerns, sending them birthday and condolence cards religiously, defending the constitution with the will of Dr. Suess's, Horton the Elephant.

Just imagine to yourself a scene if he were president and some foreign dignitary or leader asked him for some free medical advice as most people do to doctors in a social setting. Our popularity around the world would go sky high. That notion could have been set in stone with something similiar happening on the campaign trail.

If the public got one glimpse of the true nature and patriotic convictions of Ron Paul, it would have cinched his bid for the Republican primary elections. Thus, you don't get to see it.

And so it is my belief, backed up by the recent Newsmax front page article, that 4 years from now, his message will be hijacked as was Goldwater's and a new Ronald Reagan will be born for the Hybrid Republican party. All it would take is a few hastily added ammendments to the Constitution and a bevy of RP inspired youth howling to get out of the Social Security. And in perfect timing for when the so called Silver Tsunami hits the system. The equivalent of Colgate buying out Tom's of Maine.

It sounds like a good spin, but with just one problem for the idea. Paul says we'll be bankrupt quite shortly as a country if we continue our foreign policy, endless wars and government largesse. The Trans Texas Corridor now in the making and the taking of people's property by eminent domain being paid for with corporate money will be near completion.

You can't have the good you may think RP's ideas will bring you without heeding his message on it all.

Interesting times ahead alert.

I plan to continue sending money in to the Ron Paul campaign as long as he stays in the race. I'm not worried about 2008. We're in this for the long haul. Winning will simply be icing on the cake.

Dear Andrew Malcolm,

Thanks for your fair article. I presume you did not choose the headline.

I am happy to report that his "hopeless effort" if far from hopeless! No more hopeless that Sam Adam's efforts early on.

Freedom has a nice ring. Truth may prevail yet. Never before has he had a following like he does now.

As for your questions, he is taking the right steps now. Our money was well spent. The reason his message is not accepted by the majority is that the majority are sheeple who think with their emotions and not reason.

The good news is that most folks, once they understand his message, love and support him.

We've only just begun. See:
Another revolution has begun, this time at the

Even a Jefferson and Washington would not be successful today, since two things changed over the past twohundred years:
1. The voting right was expanded to include even those that cannot even take care of themselves and are dependent for their survival on the goodwill of others. It is only natural that they will vote benefits from the public treasury (i.e. from the productive members) into their own pockets, hence the ever expanding welfare state with its redistribution of income. It is as if the whole family, including the youngest kids and the lazy uncle are voting how to spend Dad's paycheck. That is why the founders restricted voting to heads of households and those that were productive (remember, it was a mainly agrarian society, therefore the landholding requirement). Any expense of the government came out of the pocket of those voting!
2. Our voting population was originally composed of people working for themselves in their ownbusinesses and their own farms. They were used to responsibility. Nowadays most people make their money working for others, so they are used to the idea to trust in the decision of others for their long term survival, hence their call for the "big daddy in the white house".

Combine the above with the overwhelming influence the government has taken over our personal lives and incomes, it is no wonder it is such a promising target for all kinds of parasites feeding on the public trough.

In effect, the change of our country from a republic to a democracy made it what it is now, an morbid shadow of it's old moral greatness, ready to collapse.

Hi Andrew,

According to my highly scientific calculations (read: wikipedia says) Ron Paul wasn't born 6 months before McCain. They are actually only a week apart. Ron Paul was born August 20 (the day after Bill Clinton's and Fred Thompson's shared birthday). Huckabee was born August 24, and McCain August 26 or 27. I thought it was interesting how many of this year's Republican candidates were born in the same week. Correct me if I'm wrong.

Why didn't Ron Paul appeal to a wider audience? Most people either never heard of him or heard the wrong things. He appeals mainly to people who get their information from the internet and take the time to weigh ideas. When Ron Paul lashed out against the Fed, his supporters looked into the situation and discovered that what he's saying is legitimate. People who vote according to what they've seen on TV (that is, most people) would never arrive at a YouTube documentary exposing the insidious nature of the Federal Reserve; therefore, they don't come to know the full value of Ron Paul's economic wisdom.

I disagree with you that there is no media conspiracy against Ron Paul. We know how news programs are threatened by powerful sponsors if they broadcast information contrary to the sponsors' wishes. For example, I recently watched a YouTube piece about Fox newscasters who were fired for trying to expose the danger of bovine growth hormone. Monsanto, the disgusting corporation that is wrecking our earth with GMOs and other freakish experiments, threatened Fox when it got wind of the upcoming expose on the growth hormones. All Monsanto would have to do is pull its advertising from the Fox network and Fox would suffer severely. Therefore they have the privilege of crafting the news. Ron Paul wasn't a treat to Monsanto, but he is a threat to GE and its subsidiaries and many a business that advertises on TV. He is a threat to all corporations who operate through government corruption, because he is not corrupt.

Of course, most internet junkies don't like Ron Paul anyway. To explain their aberrant behavior, I offer the following illuminating quote:

"All experience hath shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed." -Thomas Jefferson, The Declaration of Independence.

People LIKE the IRS, they may grumble, but forking over 30% of their income is "patriotic" to them. They LOVE the Federal Reserve's monopolization of our nation's wealth: better to have an "authority" responsible than the mere individuals. We have all been brainwashed to accept socialism and the perpetuation of the New Deal, which has gotten old without enough people noticing. People don't want to think. People especially don't want to think about something that sounds weird, like a gold standard (which our wise, unanimously revered President Richard Nixon abolished, thus giving America its first "sane" economy.) Essentially, most Americans are kissing their chains.

But I grant the educated Ron Paul critics a few legitimate concerns: Ron Paul could have done a better job refuting the racist newsletter charges; he could have done a better job explaining when and how he would eliminate the Fed and how we would operate without income tax. His books are helpful, but you can't win an election if voters need to read a whole book to understand you. Most Americans read poorly if they read at all. Most Americans watch too much TV, and that may be the bottom, bottom line.

"I do know this: our nation will rise or fall by television." -E.B.White, 1939.

Thanks for the fun essay assignment, keeps us Paul people occupied and off the streets (where we might get arrested for waving our Ron Paul signs, as a fellow from our local meetup group did!)

Live long and prosper,

I think Ron Paul's campaign HAS been SUCCESSFUL.
He started as a grassroots organization. He wanted to get the message out that the Republican party has abandoned parts of the platform that made them great. His campaign brought in record numbers in fundraising, and brought out voters who have not been inspired to vote for years and years - Dr. Paul Cured My Apathy. He also got word out to change your party by the state deadline in order to vote for him - and I switched from Democrat to Republican to vote for his message - the message I learned from receiving higher degrees in Constitutional Government and Law. Ron Paul has gotten the Independents out - something Obama and McCain are getting press for. He mobilized thousands to march for him (5,000 in Philadelphia) and he brought out thousands (4,000 in one audience) to listen to his speeches. He won every on-line poll after the televised debates. Supporters made history by buying a blimp in his name to increase advertising. They are looking into buying advertisement on a NASCAR racer. Another sign of success: the other candidates look to him and take his lead. Huckabee talks about getting rid of the IRS, Romney hit hard with our economic problems. All of them talked about the Constitution after awhile, and all of them summoned the spirit of Reagan - Paul worked with Reagan and Reagan said we need people like Paul to stay in politics. His book is on the bestseller's list. "Jane" Roe endorsed him. He received the most applause in all the T.V. debates. Obama's supporters like talking to Paul supporters. Interviewers note how polite Ron Paul is. The other candidate's have tried to mimic his Money Bombs and giving tables on their websites. He is widely viewed on YouTube. His speech as CPAC was great, and it showed how the Republicans have strayed from their conservative ideas - McCain can promise to take these views into consideration but that's not enough because he will vote with his own heart and mind. Ron Paul is in the race to truly help get our country back on track.

Why has Dr. Paul not received wide support? Simple. Ask the next guy you meet in the elevator or on the street if he knows who owns the Federal Reserve. He won't. Then ask if who knows who Ron Paul is, and he won't. I have been doing this for months and not one in a hundred can answer the questions. Whether it is the media or the campaign the fact is the TV addicts have no clue. They will just once again go in to get there collar and chain adjusted and accept their servitude.

I would submit that one reason Paul didn't do better is that the media changed their reporting on the Iraq war just in time for the election. Whereas we were told everything was a dismal failure from 2003-06, it suddenly changed in late 2007. Instead of Iraq being the main issue, it was swept under the rug and we were told everything was suddenly fine.

I did too little. I got three phone calls from paulenteers urging me to vote. However on tuesday I was 220 miles out of my precint, but within the state, and unable to vote. I was so excited because Ron Paul is the only candidate I've ever actually wanted in office, and right now America needs him.

Correction: MCCain was born August 29, one year and nine days after the greatest American hero: Ron Paul.

Reasons why Ron Paul never caught fire?

1. Voter apathy of the Republican party in general. Correct me if I'm wrong, but it appears almost every Republican caucus and primary has had a statistically poor percentage turn out when compared to the number of registered party voters and the efforts of Democrats. 14% in South Carolina comes to mind. In this sense, when you compare the results to date, no one has really "caught fire" in the Republican party. McCain has been the beneficiary of the Romney/Huckabee split support up until this last week. Note Mccain's performance since Romney's suspension of campaign.

2. Poor name recognition combined with poor mainstream press coverage. In the first 6 contests, Paul really didn't do any worse than Giuliani or Thompson, yet never received the media hype they did, nor the poll support. You may counter the polls were right because they were eventually born out by results. However, what about the polls that showed Thompson and Giuliani with significantly more support than they ever received in those same primaries?

3. Poor campaign strategy. I saw many of Paul's speeches. It wasn't until the one delivered at CPAC last week where he really took off the kid gloves and started to hammer McCain. McCain is extremely vulnerable to specific criticisms regarding traditional Republican values (check out YouTube McCain vs. McCain). Romney flip flops, Huckabee has a decade of actions in Arkansas that belie his current policy positions. Paul never efficiently went after them. It is not just enough to declare one's values and positions. One must point out the specifics of why each of your competitors do not deserve the vote.

4. Early support came from those who are against the war in Iraq. The last quarter of the year saw a marked drop in the number of front pages news articles concerning the war, along with the spin that things are going much better, making this a more difficult issue to draw continued Republican support.

5. The boring nature of an economic message. You could see the eyes of listeners start to glaze over when Paul started talking about economic policies, the need to adhere to the constitution, and why. It is a message that doesn't have a spark for most people. Of course, if Paul is right, that may change in the near future.

6. The newsletter controversy. Paul should have done a better job watching what went out under his name. At best it was poor judgment. At worst, well, others have said it better than me.

All this being said, I voted for Ron Paul, support his message, and **thank you**, Andrew, for giving his message a chance to shine on your blog. Truth be told, up until you began covering his efforts here, I would have never considered reading your paper, mostly due to the constant negative drum beat from FOX News, which now I no longer watch after their treatment of Paul. Keep up the good work.

Media ... plain and simple. Yet, I can't understand the appeal of a GOP nominee who thinks it's funny to sing: "Bomb, Bomb, Bomb ... Bomb, Bomb, Iran" to a public audience. A joke about killing thousands of people? If one puts 2 and 2 together, the conclusion is the media wants a warmonger as President so they have another war to cover.
By the way ... the Ron Paul "MOVEMENT" is just getting started.

I hope he is on the primary ballot in Texas. I was planning on celebrating my break with the republicans in my very last vote for a republican ever. Yes, Paul is my candidate. Looks Like its Hillery after that.

I think one of the main reasons is that Dr. Paul appeals to independent voters such as myself. Since in GOP primaries you have to register as a GOP well in advance this hurt the numbers for Dr. Paul. If the GOP had an open primary I know his numbers would be higher.

I also have anti war Democrat friends who would have voted for him in the primaries.

Lastly I blame the media to some extent as well. FOr the reasons listed above and I recall after a MSNBC debate and the text poll showed Dr. Paul winning the debate that pinhead Matthews made light of it.

I plan to write in Ron Paul for president in November.

Media ... plain and simple. Yet, I can't understand the appeal of a GOP nominee who thinks it's funny to sing: "Bomb, Bomb, Bomb ... Bomb, Bomb, Iran" to a public audience. A joke about killing thousands of people? If one puts 2 and 2 together, the conclusion is the media wants a warmonger as President so they have another war to cover.
By the way ... the Ron Paul "MOVEMENT" is just getting started.

Why would Paul back McCain...? He's running himself!

And why would Paul back McCain when McCain is the antithesis of evrything he believes in...?

It'll never happen. I'm surprised anyone would think it "should."

Oh, could it be the simple fact that the man is an unapologetic, raging bigot? And most people are turned off by his Aryan Nation thugs who flood every Internet discussion where his name comes up?

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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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