Thoughts, essays, and writings on Liberty. Written by the heirs of Patrick Henry.

“Political tags - such as royalist, communist, democrat, populist, fascist, liberal, conservative, and so forth - are never basic criteria. The human race divides politically into those who want people to be controlled and those who have no such desire. The former are idealists acting from highest motives for the greatest good of the greatest number. The latter are surely curmudgeons, suspicious and lacking in altruism. But they are more comfortable neighbors than the other sort.”     Robert A. Heinlein

September 10, 2007

Thompson Up, Romney And Ron Paul Down In Latest Gallup Poll

by Doug Mataconis

The latest Gallup Poll is out and it shows a small surge for Fred Thompson, while Mitt Romney falls, and Ron Paul falls along with him:

WASHINGTON — Former Tennessee senator Fred Thompson has gotten a modest bump in support after finally announcing he’s running for the Republican presidential nomination, a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll finds. And Arizona Sen. John McCain may have started to turn around his beleaguered campaign.

McCain, who bottomed out in a USA TODAY poll in mid-August after financial woes and a staff shake-up, has rebounded by 4 percentage points, to 15%. Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney has slipped 4 points from August, to 10%.

At 34%, former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani leads the field, as he has all year.

The poll, taken Friday and Saturday, shows Republican voters a bit more satisfied with their choice of candidates than they were in April, while Democratic voters are a bit less satisfied. The Democratic edge on that measure of enthusiasm is now negligible.

The full poll results are here, and also show that Ron Paul dropped back down to 1% after being at 3% last month, this the lowest Paul has polled in the Gallup poll since the beginning of June.

This is disappointing because it seemed like Paul had started to gather at least some support that was being registered in the national polls over the summer. I’m not sure where it went, or if the down tick is just an indication of a fickle electorate.

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141 Comments

  1. All of Paul’s numbers are within the poll’s margin of error. The poll was taken 9/7&8 so, if anything, Paul’s debate performance hurt him. (I thought he did well in the debate so that shows what I know.) This just proves once again that he has no real chance of being elected.

    Comment by Bob — September 10, 2007 @ 11:32 am
  2. Bob,

    If its within the margin of error, that means his true level of support could be less than 1%, just as easily as it means it could be more than 1%.

    The number doesn’t matter as much as the trend does and, right now, the trend is disappointing.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 11:33 am
  3. …he has no real chance of being elected.

    That’s because Paul’s going to take away the Republican handouts. The country is free enough as long as people get their handouts. Democrats seem more honest about wanting handouts.

    Comment by js290 — September 10, 2007 @ 11:40 am
  4. Doug,
    I wasn’t claiming that this was good news. When he polled 3% it was still less than the poll’s M.O.E. Its possible that his support has never been and never will be greater than 1%. He didn’t have statistically significant support then and he still doesn’t have it know. I find it hard to be disappointed by poll numbers for a candidate that never had a chance of winning. But then again I haven’t been sipping the Kool Aide, have you? :-)

    Comment by Bob — September 10, 2007 @ 12:14 pm
  5. Bob,

    I stand corrected. I mis-interpreted your comment.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 12:16 pm
  6. So what’s the takehome message here? Give up and not vote, or vote for your personal alternate?

    Comment by oilnwater — September 10, 2007 @ 12:37 pm
  7. No lesson, just observing the numbers and wondering when, or if, the breakthrough will happen

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 12:42 pm
  8. It looks like if is really the operative word.

    Comment by oilnwater — September 10, 2007 @ 12:45 pm
  9. Vote for whoever you think would make the best President. In my case that’s Ron Paul.

    Comment by Bob — September 10, 2007 @ 12:46 pm
  10. They sampled 425 people by phone. Not a large enough sampling that I think is worthy of much priority. Especially since these polls are most likely about name recognition and the main stream media (like USA Today who is running the polls) plaster the other candidates names all over their headlines and leave Ron Paul out almost entirely. Ron Paul is on a meteoric rise in name reconition right now and will reflect in the polls to come.

    Comment by 4 Ron Paul — September 10, 2007 @ 12:53 pm
  11. Apparently you need help with your math skills.

    1 in 425 =2.4%, not the 1% you claim. Also, calling 425 people is hardly a large sample.

    Ron Paul is going to be the next President, you’ll see.

    Comment by cameron — September 10, 2007 @ 12:55 pm
  12. Cameron,

    No, its 1% in poll that had a random sample size of 425 respondents.

    And 2.4% isn’t any better, really.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 12:57 pm
  13. Ron Paul is on a meteoric rise in name reconition right now and will reflect in the polls to come.

    Actually that’s what happened over the summer, don’t you think.

    It started with the Giuliani confrontation in the June debate and was followed by many media appearances that he might not have otherwise gotten for a guy at less than 5% in the polls.

    What is disappointing about this poll is that it seems like the gains of the summer have been erased.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 12:59 pm
  14. These polls are fraudulent.

    While I understand that most of the lamestream media, and their brainwashed audience of zombies will treat these as important, I dispute vehemently that they are indicative of anything other than media spin.

    These polls are designed to give a certain result, to tap into the human herd instinct, and drive / shape public opinion.

    Text msg polls cannot be manipulated this way. They only allow 1 vote per phone number, despite Sean Hannity’s suggestions to the contrary. And 100-200 times more people are polled than an old-style telephone poll.

    Consider the number of individual donors in the “fundraising poll”. Consider the various state straw poll results. Consider the number of people who show up at Dr. Paul’s events.

    In real life polls of interested individuals, conducted in the light of day, Ron Paul is getting 15% – 33%, and most everyone else gets half that. He consistently draws crowds 3-5 times bigger than most anyone else in the GOP. (Yes, there are some outliers where he comes in 6th place, but there are also some outliers where he gets 80% – these outliers are the hallmark of raw data, as opposed to something that has been “weighted” and “smoothed”)

    There is only 1 (ONE) measure where Dr. Paul is down at the bottom, and that is old-style telephone polling. Not only is the measurement made behind closed doors, but it is then subjected to various manipulations [before/if] it ever sees the light of day. For a “randomized” (so they claim) measure, it displays unusual smoothness. A real random poll should “bounce” around a lot more, with numbers spanning the entire Margin of Error.

    If the MoE is 5% (and most of these polls are at least that) then is VERY surprising that Dr. Paul (nor any of the other candidates) never gets a 6% or a 7% (assuming a 1-2% real base of support.) One would have expected *somebody* to have a random fluke and jump into the 5-6% range in any single poll. Paul, Tancredo, Hunter, Brownback, T. Thompson, Gilmore (when they were running) should have *All* seen results bouncing around like demented Mexican jumping beans from poll to poll.

    Does this match with what the polls are reporting? It does not. The polls show this group smoothly rising and falling in a way that shows the data has been manipulated.

    While the TX straw poll was strictly restricted to past GOP state and national delegates, and NOT ONE old-style telephone poll in TX has yet mentioned Ron Paul (see: http://www.usaelectionpolls.com/ for details), making a direct comparison difficult, they do often mention Duncan Hunter’s name.

    Now Hunter won the TX straw poll with 41%, but only garners low single digits in the state telephone polls during the same period. It can’t be a Texas snub effect, since Thompson (who also didn’t attend, and who wasn’t even an announced candidate at the time) came in second (just slightly ahead of Dr. Paul, who came in third.)

    Telephone polls at BEST (if everyone is honest and above board) measure name recognition. At WORST, they are outright deceptive and used to manipulate public perception.

    Later.

    Comment by Kevin Houston — September 10, 2007 @ 12:59 pm
  15. You must have been so excited to read this Doug. Why would anyone still believe any of these MSM polls? Dr. Paul is growing in popularity and I dont need usa today poll to tell me that, he has real support not media hype behind the fake conservatives like thompson.

    Comment by Bill Masur — September 10, 2007 @ 1:02 pm
  16. Pollsters refrain from asking questions
    from anyone they don’t know will give the
    answer they need to hear.

    Those polls are rubbish!

    Comment by TheOneLaw — September 10, 2007 @ 1:11 pm
  17. Apologies,

    Gallup Polls are Rubbish !
    Gallup Polls are Rubbish !
    Gallup Polls are Rubbish !
    Gallup Polls are Rubbish !
    Gallup Polls are Rubbish !
    Gallup Polls are Rubbish !
    Gallup Polls are Rubbish !
    Gallup Polls are Rubbish !
    (Composition)

    Comment by TheOneLaw — September 10, 2007 @ 1:13 pm
  18. Ron Paul’s percentages will swell after tonight’s appearance on the Bill O’Reilly Show, with an audience of millions. Count on it.

    Comment by wgadget — September 10, 2007 @ 1:14 pm
  19. Anyone who follows political polls are unscientific because they rely on the ignorance of the population. If Major League Baseball did All Star voting randomly then the entire All-Star roster would be filled with injured or washed up players.

    Ron Paul won 9 straw polls and finshed third among delegates in the Texas Straw poll where he raised $100,000 overnight.

    Comment by Mike — September 10, 2007 @ 1:21 pm
  20. Come, come now. Haven’t we learned by now not to place our faith in the value of a single poll? What’s so much more reliable about this poll of less than a thousand people than straw polls or polls conducted by the news stations? Either validate the recent on-the-ground polls where Ron Paul has fairly won, or the citing of this poll loses all relevance.

    I for one think most polls are pretty irrelevant. Note, for example, that the Gallup pollers were asking about Fred Thompson long before he declared candidacy. How’s that for bias and subtly influencing the data of the poll?

    I don’t think the electorate is fickle. Many of Ron Paul’s supporters haven’t paid attention to an election for a long time because they were so disillusioned by their options. I know I was. And I am currently a registered Republican, but I was registered Democrat before. I know quite a few people like this. Are the pollers calling us? No. Will we vote? Yes.

    A sample of a few hundred Republicans who are satisfied with the party and have been participating members will predictably show them siding with the Republican candidates who are also satisfied with the party.

    Comment by Financial Responsibility — September 10, 2007 @ 1:24 pm
  21. We’re trying to pull a coup here…get a clue. We purposefully lie to the pollsters so that the GOP won’t have the ability to mobilize against us come Super Tuesday.

    Comment by Dan — September 10, 2007 @ 1:26 pm
  22. Once again, much ado. The USAToday gang are notoriously biased and cannot be trusted with anything but sports, at which they do a fine job. Pretty good with the weather too. But when it comes to anything political, they are in bed with the CFR crowd, of which Flubber Thompson is an outstanding member. They like pro-war gas bags, and Thompson is no exception. I am sure the USAToday folks are thrilled Thompson supported Haitian dictator Aristide also. Let’s move on, shall we?

    The New York Times Magazine had some rather damning comments in yesterday’s edition about Rudy Giuliani. That might make for a fun post.

    Comment by zenpiper — September 10, 2007 @ 1:26 pm
  23. Oreilly is going to rip Ron Paul a new one IMHO

    Comment by Pot Heads — September 10, 2007 @ 1:47 pm
  24. “Scientific” polls are RIGGED!

    Notice how every non-manipulable metric we have –straw polls, meetup support, post-debate text message and online polling, # of people who show up at candidates’ rallies — say Ron Paul is doing very well and Giuliani, for example, is not — while the ONE — count ‘em, ONE — metric we have that’s obtained through easily-manipulated means by people with decades of experience in manipulating that metric, and with a financial interest in doing so, shows the EXACT opposite?

    I mean, if Giuliani is so popular, why doesn’t he have a SINGLE meetup group? Why hasn’t he won a SINGLE straw poll? Why does he never will post-debate or online polls?

    The times, they are a-changing. Our media lies, the pollsters lie, the politicians lie, the pundits lie.

    And it’s all about to collapse.

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 1:52 pm
  25. How many people know that organizations like Gallup take many polls but only release ONE as the “official” results? You think they ONLY call 425 people ONE time and then faithfully report that? Give me a break.

    They massage the questions, they choose new criteria for selecting who to call, they discard results their paymasters don’t like and publicize the ones that will make them $$.

    It’s pure MANIPULATION. Use your eyes: look at the straw polls, look at the meetup groups, look at the debates and who wins the post-debate polls, look at the enthusiasm, look at who the establishment is afraid of. Giuliani is not at 25% or whatever. HE DOES NOT HAVE A SINGLE MEETUP GROUP! You’re being lied to, wake up.

    “Scientific” polls are just another brainwashing technique. WAKE UP.

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 1:56 pm
  26. How annoying, whether it’s bias, unscientific, hostile, or whatever, somehow there is always a reason why Ron Paul isn’t doing well.

    Maybe the reason is that:
    1. Not everyone knows about him.
    2. Some people are openly hostile to what he stands for.
    3. Some people are not ready to believe what he says.
    4. The Republican party is still full of neo-cons.

    It always seems that Dr. Paul supporters are all about killing the messenger when it comes to news of poor national pooling.

    Comment by TanGeng — September 10, 2007 @ 1:59 pm
  27. TanGeng,

    But Ron Paul IS doing well, very well.

    In the past week he’s a) gotten 16% in the Texas Straw Poll b) Won the Maryland straw poll with 28% c) won FOX’s own NON-MANIPULABLE text message post-debate poll with 33% of the vote among 8 candidates, and won MSNBC’s online poll, also NON-MANIPULABLE, with ~75%. His crowds everywhere are MUCH bigger than any other candidates’.

    Now TanGeng, do you not find it suspicious that the SINGLE metric Ron Paul is not doing well on is the “scientific” landline phone polling? That is the outlier, yet it is treated with oracle status by the MSM. Why? Because the MSM is part of the establishment that has a lot to lose if Ron Paul gets elected.

    Can anyone name a metric besides the “scientific” polls that Ron Paul doesn’t do extremely well on? And can anyone tell me what’s so “scientific” about calling 425 people on the phone as opposed to, say, seeing how 1,000 people vote in a straw poll? It makes no sense, especially when you consider that pollsters like Gallup have a financial interest in Paul not doing well, and that they know PRECISELY how to massage their surveys to get the results they want.

    Your media lies, your pollsters lie, your politicians lie. Ron Paul’s support is far, far greater than 1% and they know it. The whole lying system is about to collapse, and they know that too, and they’re in a panic over it.

    Prepare for President Paul.

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 2:06 pm
  28. Hmm, I’m laughing now.

    Romney is worried, sent an R-TX congressman to stump for him in NH who bent over and whispered to me that Ron was his good friend and a good man.

    NH is afire with RP, and the GOP here loves him.
    In the Luntz focus group, he had 10% of mainstream R’s representing him but our positive comments were all cut out.

    Comment by Anon — September 10, 2007 @ 2:09 pm
  29. Oh and I got a news poll today about the ‘war’. They know 70% of the public is anti and they want to win this election but know they won’t with a warhawk candidate — independents in NH number around 43% now.

    Comment by Anon — September 10, 2007 @ 2:10 pm
  30. Straw polls are largely measure of how much effort a campaign puts into them, Guiliani has refused to participate in any of them. Ron Paul’s supporters skew younger than the other candidates so he does better in things like meetup groups and internet polls. Although, I will concede that Ron Paul supporters are more passionate than those of most of the other candidates.
    MSM polls have proven to be more accurate than either straw polls or internet polls. If you don’t believe me just ask President Dean or Alan Keyes. Both of them did much better in straw polls than they did when the real voting happened.
    No one is concerned enough about Ron Paul to fix a poll over him. Outside of college towns and blogs Ron Paul isn’t being discussed by average people. I wish I was wrong but I see no evidence that Ron Paul is a serious contender.

    Comment by Bob — September 10, 2007 @ 2:13 pm
  31. if Giuliani is so popular, why doesn’t he have a SINGLE meetup group? Why hasn’t he won a SINGLE straw poll? Why does he never will post-debate or online polls?

    Because he has about $ 20 million and the support of many Republicans who will do alot to make sure he wins primaries maybe ?

    He doesn’t need to worry about guerrilla marketing. He won’t have to worry about getting enough signatures in 50 states to get his name on the ballot. And he won’t have to worry about whether the media pays attention to him or not, because he has enough money to buy media time.

    The fact that he doesn’t have a meetup group is, in the end, meaningless.

    I don’t like it anymore than you do, but it’s the truth.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 2:17 pm
  32. Buckwheat,

    If the scientific polls lie, how is it that they’ve been so darn accurate over the years ?

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 2:18 pm
  33. “MSM polls have proven to be more accurate than either straw polls or internet polls. If you don’t believe me just ask President Dean or Alan Keyes.”

    Bullshit, Dean was winning all the MSM polls until a couple of weeks before the Iowa Caucus.

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 2:18 pm
  34. We’re trying to pull a coup here…get a clue. We purposefully lie to the pollsters so that the GOP won’t have the ability to mobilize against us come Super Tuesday.

    You know, I think you really believe that.

    Sigh.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 2:19 pm
  35. “The fact that [Giuliani] doesn’t have a meetup group is, in the end, meaningless.”

    It’s more than that, Doug! He also doesn’t win any straw polls. He sat Ames and Texas out! He doesn’t win any post-debate polls, whether online or via text-messaging. His YouTube numbers are below Ron Paul’s. The only metrics Giuliani does well on are MONEY, which is virtually all from the establishment, and in MSM polls, which are easily manipulated, as no one here debates. Does anyone doubt what I said upthread, that orgs like Gallup take a number of polls and then only release ONE? Or do you really think they simply call 425 people and then tell you what those 425 said?

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 2:22 pm
  36. Ron Paul’s percentages will swell after tonight’s appearance on the Bill O’Reilly Show, with an audience of millions. Count on it.

    At most, O’Reilly’s show gets about 2 million viewers a night, less than “Are You Smarter Than A 5th Grader ?”

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 2:22 pm
  37. “If the scientific polls lie, how is it that they’ve been so darn accurate over the years ?”

    Mataconis, the internet has changed the whole game. It was so easy pre-Web to shape, lie, omit, and fake-poll public opinion into favoring the candidates the establishment wanted elected. After all if you think only 1% of the people support your candidate, it’s going to dampen your enthusiasm for him. A lot got swept under the rug, but the internet allows us to lift that rug up and see what’s under it.

    Ron Paul at 1%? A complete LIE. I use that word intentionally. It’s a foreordained, desired result.

    Not gonna work this time.

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 2:25 pm
  38. He also doesn’t win any straw polls. He sat Ames and Texas out! He doesn’t win any post-debate polls, whether online or via text-messaging. His YouTube numbers are below Ron Paul’s.

    Again, so what ? With one or two exceptions, the winners of the various Straw Polls have never won a party nomination. Just as President Howard Dean, President Pat Robertson, and President Alan Keyes.

    In the long run, winning a straw poll where a thousand people or so vote, while it is something, isn’t an indication of anything quite yet

    Does anyone doubt what I said upthread, that orgs like Gallup take a number of polls and then only release ONE? Or do you really think they simply call 425 people and then tell you what those 425 said?</blockquote>

    No, of course, they don’t. And to suggest that that is how it should work is to completely misunderstand what random sampling, polling, and statistics are all about.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 2:28 pm
  39. I’m so sick of these phony polls trying to convince RP supporters to just give up and that he doesn’t have a chance. Bull!

    As one Lew Rockwell web post put it: “He’s on the wrong side of the biblical threescore-and-ten, his demeanor is as mild as buttermilk, and his physique is wraith-like, but Ron Paul is a steel-spined ass-kicker with dangling anatomy made of solid brass. He is a man in full.”

    No matter who says Ron Paul can’t win won’t affect my vote one bit because I will not vote for any of the media’s favored “sock puppets & bobble-heads.”

    The only thing a misleading post like this does is to piss me off and make me send in another donation to the Ron Paul campaign and to try harder. Ron Paul supporters LOVE their candidate and will NEVER give up.

    When 100% of the Ron Paul crowd turns up at the Republican primaries (where only 10% the average voters bother to vote) we’ll see just how relevant Gallop polls are.

    Comment by Desert Rat — September 10, 2007 @ 2:33 pm
  40. “And to suggest that that is how it should work is to completely misunderstand what random sampling, polling, and statistics are all about.”

    I understand it perfectly — it’s a BUSINESS, and the goal of a business is to MAKE MONEY. You make money by giving people who pay you THE PRODUCT THEY WANT.

    Or was there something else you meant?

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 2:33 pm
  41. Mataconis — to clarify my specific response to your point: when information could easily be controlled by a few people in pre-Google/text messaging/meetup/Google/Digg/etc days, *genuine public opinion tended to follow the reported public polling, which often had to be massaged.* It’s part of our rigged, corrupt political system. For example, if anyone here doubts that the 1995 Iowa Straw Poll was 100% rigged, read up on it. An exact tie — 2,582 votes each, between Gramm and Dole after a 2 1/2 hour delay, counting the ballots in a locked room only Gramm and Dole supporters were allowed in? You really have to be newborn-baby naive to accept that. Our whole electoral system is rotten to the core.

    Now that information is not so easily manipulated, they’re trying it again, and we see the results. Ron Paul at 1%? Give me a break. The lies have to get bigger and bigger, and fewer and fewer people believe them, until one day — poof, the who structure collapses.

    And everyone says “wow!”

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 2:36 pm
  42. It’s all about perception.

    Whether or not the Gallup poll is an accurate reflection of true Paul support doesn’t change the fact that many voters use these polls to tell them which candidates not to support. If Paul doesn’t poll well in the Gallup polls, he won’t get the kind of support he needs to win.

    Comment by Willem — September 10, 2007 @ 2:37 pm
  43. On Gallup Polls:
    Good thing that we don’t elect candidates and presidents by calling 425 people at random…

    Comment by William — September 10, 2007 @ 2:43 pm
  44. It doesn’t matter where Giuliani’s money is coming from, what matters is that he has it, and Paul doesn’t. Let’s see Candidate A has $30M, 34% support, about 90% name recognition and he refuses to take part in straw polls. Candidate B has $3M, 1% support, about 50%(optimistically) name recognition and he wins ever straw and internet poll. I’ll bet that A’s going to win. I think almost everyone who has ever been involved with a campaign would agree with me.

    Comment by Bob — September 10, 2007 @ 2:45 pm
  45. A straw poll where 500 or 1,000 people show up, “isn’t an indication of anything quite yet” according to Mataconis, even though that is EXACTLY what happens on election day — people show up in person to vote.

    Whereas, 425 people being called at home via some mysterious, ever-shifting screening process with financial motives behind it — that is a precise, clear window on the beliefs of the electorate, and worth blogging about!

    System. About. to. Collapse.

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 2:46 pm
  46. The only “poll” I pay any attention to is my own poll of the number of derogatory remarks being made about Ron Paul. Since these have dramatically increased, I can only surmise that many establishment types consider him a great threat and are starting to shake in their shoes.
    By the way, I’m 64 years old and have never been polled. Why should I believe in polls?

    Comment by Carolyn — September 10, 2007 @ 2:47 pm
  47. Bob –

    You forgot to mention Ron Paul’s 40,000 meetup members to Giuliani’s 0.

    What affect will they have? Your wisdom from past campaigns aren’t worth much, because THE INTERNET CHANGES EVERYTHING. The will of the people can no longer be manipulated by a few elite pollsters, media, and establishment “donor bundlers.”

    And I guarantee you Ron Paul’s name recognition will be 99% by election day, don’t worry about that.

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 2:49 pm
  48. Whether or not the Gallup poll is an accurate reflection of true Paul support doesn’t change the fact that many voters use these polls to tell them which candidates not to support. If Paul doesn’t poll well in the Gallup polls, he won’t get the kind of support he needs to win.

    You’re right. At some point, there is a bandwagon effect that happens. But there really isn’t anything you can about that.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 2:51 pm
  49. Buckwheat,

    While I agree that the Internet is a new factor in campaigning, there’s no evidence its changing the fundamentals at this point.

    Again, for Exhibit A in that argument, I point you to Vice-President Howard Dean.

    And, if we are going to talk about `net supporters, then Barack Obama has everyone beat.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 2:55 pm
  50. “While I agree that the Internet is a new factor in campaigning, there’s no evidence its changing the fundamentals at this point.”

    That’s an interesting thing for a blogger to write. Tell me, where can I get a dead tree edition of the Liberty Papers?

    YouTube alone has “changed the fundamentals” and everyone knows it. Groups of active, smart citizens now have a way to instantly share their ideas and projects with each other without relying on convincing some media hack to drag out a camera crew and “cover” them.

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 2:59 pm
  51. Buckwheat,

    Have you ever actually worked on a campaign ?

    If you did you’d know that YouTube isn’t going to help get the vote out on Election Day.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 3:02 pm
  52. PS, your Dean comparison is inapt. 1) a lot more people are online now than in ’03, the blogosphere is much larger 2) Dean was a different candidate, there was no there there to justify the excitement once the attention was focused on him, he was antiwar but nothing else innovative, whereas RP has a lot of there there, namely a little piece of paper called…well, you know; 3) lots of vital sites like YouTube did not exist then, and cellphone and other cheap cameras were much rarer or did not exist in ’03 4) the media did not have a pattern of newslying about Dean the way they do about Paul. He was the lefty media’s darling until a couple of weeks before when people like Jon Chait got worried he couldn’t beat Bush and started wrting hit pieces, culminating in the manufactured ‘Dean Scream’ story.

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 3:04 pm
  53. “Have you ever actually worked on a campaign ?
    If you did you’d know that YouTube isn’t going to help get the vote out on Election Day.”

    You know this how, Mataconis? YouTube was founded in 2006 and didn’t get big until last year. We don’t have a test case.

    If YouTube’s such a peripheral player, why are they co-sponsoring one of the debates with CNN in November?

    Hmmm?

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 3:06 pm
  54. Buckwheat,

    I watched as much as i could stand of the Democrats You Tube debate. It wasn’t revolutionary in the least. In fact, many of the questions were either childish or ridiculous.

    I don’t expect the Republican YouTube debate will be any more enlightening.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 3:10 pm
  55. And if YouTube’s such a peripheral player, why did the Democrats famously take questions in YouTube format at one of their debates in July?

    Hmmm?

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 3:11 pm
  56. Buckwheat,

    Except for not reporting the super-secret polls that show Ron Paul with the support of 99% of Americans (and 75% of their dogs), what lies are the media telling about the Paul campaign ?

    Its not a lie to accurate report that he’s an underdog. I wish he wasn’t, but he is.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 3:12 pm
  57. Buckwheat,
    It seems like ever election somebody is telling me that this or that has changed everything. Last election eve a group of Lamont supporters were telling me that their candidate was going to win. They told me about his grassroots support and how Lieberman didn’t have any grassroots support, they also told me about their great internet operation and how lame Lieberman’s internet operation was. I told them about the polls and how I had never seen a candidate overcome a deficit like their candidate was facing. They told me I just didn’t understand the changes that had taken place. Lamont lost by almost exactly the margin predicted by the polls. Campaign tools change but polls still do an excellent job of measuring how elections are going.
    I plan on voting for Ron Paul but I have no illusions that he’ll win or even be competitive. I would love to come back to this site and apologize to you for not believing, but I doubt that I’ll have too.

    Comment by Bob — September 10, 2007 @ 3:12 pm
  58. Now, Ron Paul is the most demanded candidate across the mainstream media.

    He’ll be on The O’Reilly factor tonight at 8pm EST.

    ORF could be a bad thing for Ron Paul, but his name recognition will increase tonight.

    Comment by William — September 10, 2007 @ 3:12 pm
  59. And if YouTube’s such a peripheral player, why did the Democrats famously take questions in YouTube format at one of their debates in July?

    Because politicians like to get free TV time perhaps ?

    Did you actually watch any of the thing ?

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 3:12 pm
  60. Sorry, cross-post, I hadn’t read your 3:10 when I posted at 3:11.

    Still wondering where you get the idea that “YouTube isn’t going to help get the vote out on Election Day.”

    I’ve got to get some work done now. Thanks for the discussion. Keep an eye on those Gallup Polls, where no-support Rudy gallops away with 25% or whatever # they decided the plug in there! I guess I’ll have to vote for him instead of a 1%, margin of error LOSER like PAUL RON!

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 3:13 pm
  61. oops… didn’t mean “the most”

    I read this
    But the CNN debate is not the only media offer on the table. “Ron Paul is a hot media property right now,” says another source close to the campaign. “The campaign is fielding up to 50 media requests a day for Ron Paul – from local, regional and national media, including both liberal and conservative talk show hosts and program producers who would love to him on to speak on the Iraq war and other issues around which he’s defined his campaign.”

    Comment by William — September 10, 2007 @ 3:17 pm
  62. oops… didn’t mean “the most”

    I read this:
    But the CNN debate is not the only media offer on the table. “Ron Paul is a hot media property right now,” says another source close to the campaign. “The campaign is fielding up to 50 media requests a day for Ron Paul – from local, regional and national media, including both liberal and conservative talk show hosts and program producers who would love to him on to speak on the Iraq war and other issues around which he’s defined his campaign.”

    Comment by William — September 10, 2007 @ 3:17 pm
  63. OK, one last post — Bob and Doug, YouTube is revolutionary. I don’t know what Lamont supporters told you in ’06 Bob, but YouTube and Google are the most revolutionary of all websites from an information-sharing point of view, and they change the whole electoral game. The lies of TPTB can’t stand for much longer, and TPTB know that, and are worried as hell.

    To replicate what YouTube allows any single person with a net connection and a cellphone camera to do now, you’d have to 10 years ago have been a national news network. Literally. Anyone can now be Tom Brokaw, NBC News, and the NBC News graphics department.

    I guess we’ll all have to wait and see what happens…

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 3:18 pm
  64. Mataconis, responding to your 3:12 — look, the point isn’t whether the snowman question was “innovative” or not, the points are that 1) Ron Paul fans (or anyone) can now easily create and share TV with each other instantly, and 2) TPTB recognize the power of this so much that they create debates around it.

    And when some Republicans tried to back out, hacks like Patrick Ruffini knew enough to tell them they had to get back in there because this YT revolution is unignorable.

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 3:21 pm
  65. Was Chris Wallace conducting the poll? Remember, he’s the same fellow who thinks Republicans are following the Constitution are Republicans also following Al Quida.

    After the blatant, in your face corruption the MSM media & the establishment politians have shown so far concerning Paul, is anyone really going to trust a poll?

    Are the polls done for free? Or is someone paying for them? Follow the money trail. If a candidate really needs $100,000,000 to win a presidential election now, do we really think that incredible amount of money being spent is all on the up & up?

    After Fox’s phony diners, phony applause meter, ABC cancelling out comments, the Republican Dr. Doom guy telling pre-registered Paul voters to go home before voting, etc etc, I wouldn’t trust one damn thing the MSM says is the “truth.” & neither should anyone else quite frankly.

    Comment by Paul voter — September 10, 2007 @ 3:26 pm
  66. Sadly if Ron Paul does become president he will be assassinated. Because he’s trying to do the same thing JFK and Lincoln where doing, abolishing the income tax, corrupt interest, Federal Reserve and trying to make this country what it was meant to be FREE.
    All you who oppose Ron Paul are sadly being fuk’d up the ass by the corrupt few. Only a few can control so many of you, how sad.

    Comment by Martin — September 10, 2007 @ 3:29 pm
  67. Martin,

    It is comments like yours that to a great dis-service to Ron Paul supporters everywhere by making the rest of the public think we’re all nuts.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 3:34 pm
  68. Lincoln wasn’t trying to abolish the income tax, just the opposite he started the income tax. There was no Federal Reserve in Lincoln’s time and he suspended Habitus Corpus (sp).

    Comment by Bob — September 10, 2007 @ 3:34 pm
  69. Lincoln ordered the Treasury to print its own money as did JFK. Thats the point. Thats what takes us out of debt, thats what makes us free. Well free of being robbed.

    Comment by Martin — September 10, 2007 @ 3:37 pm
  70. Buckwheat,

    Again, I don’t disagree that YouTube is revolutionary in many senses, but it’s also only one year old. It will be a long time before videos posted on the Internet displace the meat-and-potatoes work of local politics, if ever.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 3:39 pm
  71. am i right or am i right

    Comment by Martin — September 10, 2007 @ 3:42 pm
  72. Guys,

    The Federal Reserve came into existence in the 1910s.

    Abraham Lincoln was President from 1860-1865.

    Apparently, those evil 20th Century bankers used a time machine to go back to Ford’s Theater in April 1865 to hatch their nefarious plot.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 3:44 pm
  73. Been reading the back-and-forth between Bob, Doug, and Buckwheat here.

    Everybody is right and everybody is wrong. It just happens in parts.

    Buckwheat’s comments on the evolution of the Net since ’03 is right on. The YouTube factor remains to be seen, but it is definitely true that it allows the message to get out, unspun and unfiltered. The technorevolution that has been going on is like a bunch of other stuff going on, a move from centralized monopolies to decentralized individula efforts. More on that as we go.

    Doug was right in that the debate questions at CNN/YouTube were childish, but blame CNN for that for bad choices in filtering hte questions.

    Bob may be right in his pesimissim, but it may be premature. Lots of real estate and time left to cover between now and St. Paul.

    Oh, for the old-school single-topic Lincoln-Douglas debates of old–substance over style, brains over photogenics…but I digress.

    There is a signigicant difference between Dean ’03 and Paul ’08. Dean was still in the top-down, give-out-the-marching-orders-and-talking-points structure that we’re seeing from all of the D and R runners–except for Dr. Paul. His campaign is a bottoms-up, here-comes-the-wave-get-your-surfboard and ride it, grassroots structure that has contributed millions in in-kind to the campaign beyond the cash numbers that the MSM gets fixated on. MSM can’t track that because they have forgotten how, so they focus on lazy reporting on things like cash in the bank and rigged “scientific” polls. This is also part of the trend away from the centralization of America. We’re seeing it in all walks of life lately, from the rise of the blogosphere away from the MSM, the rise of sustainable organic agriculture away from conventional big farms, the rise of alternative natural curative medications away from big pharmaceutical poisons, the move from decentralized energy from power plant to individual solar units selling energy back to the grid, the eminent domain backlash away from centralized palnning towards individual property rights,and so on, just to name a few. The underlying trend is a move away from centralized everything and towards decentralized individual everything, and Dr. Paul is not only part of that movement, but symbolic of it. It’s very nuanced and subtle, but it’s there. And it’s growing. And it’s a natural pendulum reaction to the overswing to the totalitarian centralization tendencies we’ve seen since 9-11, and those fighting against it are fighting a losing battle. There will come a day when it swings too far in the other direction and begin swinging back, as it has in the past, but we’re nowhere near that point now. That’s the nature of things, and the nature of the political pendulum right now, whether anyone likes it or not.

    To me, that’s the bigger picture.

    Comment by Tannim — September 10, 2007 @ 3:50 pm
  74. Lincoln was killed as a result of his monetary policies. He was offered loans at high interest rates by bankers in Europe led by the ROTHSCHILD(find out who the rothschilds are and find out who the are linked too, well let me tell you the “FEDERAL RESERVE”.

    Comment by Martin — September 10, 2007 @ 3:56 pm
  75. I never put any stock in polls, unless I know and can verify where they got the call list, was it voters registration list, did they only call land line numbers or cell numbers too, when was it was last updated, what were the questions and how were they phrased, what was the age brackets called and geographic area?

    Sheesh, how could anyone trust poll results without that information?

    Comment by Robert — September 10, 2007 @ 3:57 pm
  76. Tannim,

    Interesting theory, I’m not sure I entirely agree with it or that the de-centralized movement that you’re discussing will translate into a significant shift in voting patterns (people still only vote for candidates they know, and most of them still don’t know who Ron Paul is or what his issues are because the coverage of him is so scattershot). But I think you’ve raised a lot of valid points and I’ll be curious to see how it plays out.

    Comment by UCrawford — September 10, 2007 @ 4:00 pm
  77. Martin,

    Lincoln was killed because an unstable actor who sympathized with the Southern states, hated abolition passionately and felt a great deal of guilt for not serving in the Confederate army (at his mother’s request) shot him when the opportunity arose. The moronic bullshit emanating from you anti-capitalism/conspiracy fringe types is unbelievable.

    Comment by UCrawford — September 10, 2007 @ 4:06 pm
  78. yes and the world is a perfect place and we must belive everything we’re told. The people that own the FEDERAL RESERVE own this country end of story. They killed JFK and Lincoln.

    “Most Americans have no real understanding of the operation of the international money lenders. The accounts of the Federal Reserve System have never been audited. It operates outside the control of Congress and manipulates the credit of the United States” — Sen. Barry Goldwater (Rep. AR)

    “This [Federal Reserve Act] establishes the most gigantic trust on earth. When the President
    [Wilson} signs this bill, the invisible government of the monetary power will be legalized....the worst
    legislative crime of the ages is perpetrated by this banking and currency bill." --
    Charles A. Lindbergh, Sr. , 1913

    "From now on, depressions will be scientifically created." -- Congressman Charles A.
    Lindbergh Sr. , 1913

    "The financial system has been turned over to the Federal Reserve Board. That Board asministers the finance system by authority of a purely profiteering group. The system is Private, conducted for the sole purpose of obtaining the greatest possible profits from the use of other people's money" -- Charles A. Lindbergh Sr., 1923

    "The Federal Reserve bank buys government bonds without one penny..." -- Congressman
    Wright Patman, Congressional Record, Sept 30, 1941

    "We have, in this country, one of the most corrupt institutions the world has ever known. I refer to the Federal Reserve Board. This evil institution has impoverished the people of the United States and has practically bankrupted our government. It has done this through the corrupt practices of the moneyed vultures who control it". -- Congressman Louis T. McFadden in 1932 (Rep. Pa)

    "The Federal Reserve banks are one of the most corrupt institutions the world has ever seen.
    There is not a man within the sound of my voice who does not know that this nation is run by the
    International bankers -- Congressman Louis T. McFadden (Rep. Pa)

    "Some people think the Federal Reserve Banks are the United States government's institutions.
    They are not government institutions. They are private credit monopolies which prey upon the people
    of the United States for the benefit of themselves and their foreign swindlers" -- Congressional
    Record 12595-12603 -- Louis T. McFadden, Chairman of the Committee on Banking and
    Currency (12 years) June 10, 1932

    "I have never seen more Senators express discontent with their jobs....I think the major cause is
    that, deep down in our hearts, we have been accomplices in doing something terrible and
    unforgiveable to our wonderful country. Deep down in our heart, we know that we have given our
    children a legacy of bankruptcy. We have defrauded our country to get ourselves elected." -- John
    Danforth (R-Mo)

    "These 12 corporations together cover the whole country and monopolize and use for private
    gain every dollar of the public currency..." -- Mr. Crozier of Cincinnati, before Senate Banking and
    Currency Committee - 1913

    "The [Federal Reserve Act] as it stands seems to me to open the way to a vast inflation of the
    currency… I do not like to think that any law can be passed that will make it possible to submerge
    the gold standard in a flood of irredeemable paper currency.” — Henry Cabot Lodge Sr., 1913

    Comment by Martin — September 10, 2007 @ 4:18 pm
  79. Meetup’s great. Youtube’s great.
    Politics is still the guy from 2 houses down knocking on your door on a saturday afternoon, and his call the day after your ballot arrives in the mail or the day before the polls open, and your commitment to him to vote for Ron Paul. Or giving up one evening in January or February to attend a caucus in someones kitchen to send delegates for Ron Paul.
    I feel this election will be won or lost in the trenches of sub-urban neighborhoods and it’s our duty as liberty loving patriots to take up arms (clipboards and brochures) and risk our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor (a couple of Saturday afternoons) fighting (dropping off brochures) in these trenches.

    For liberty and the sake of this country, please join your local meetup and get canvassing while doorknocking is still the front line.
    God knows it could be worse. And probably will be for our sons and daughters unless we decide than now is the time we will fight.

    Comment by Chip Barron — September 10, 2007 @ 4:21 pm
  80. I’m voting for Paul whether or not he will be elected.

    Who knows, mabye we can spam the election the same way as the debate polls?

    Comment by mickey klein — September 10, 2007 @ 4:27 pm
  81. I like to think that the pendulum swung its farthest to centralized control with the clinton health care grab attempt. Folks said ‘holy crap! are we really at socialism’s door?’.

    It’s creeping back the other way and this campaign could be a nice shove towards liberty IF WE PUT OUR BACKS (not just our typing fingers) INTO IT!

    Comment by Chip Barron — September 10, 2007 @ 4:30 pm
  82. Martin,

    I’ll believe what I’ve been told in school over some anonymous jackass throwing out random, unconnected quotes on the Internet. The homeless guy I saw yelling at his reflection in a window the other probably believes the Jews killed Lincoln too…the “evidence” you’ve cited isn’t any more coherent or rational than anything he was saying.

    Comment by UCrawford — September 10, 2007 @ 4:41 pm
  83. No argument: Ron Paul does not have as much national name recognition compared to the others. That is a function of MSM exposure. Yet, he wins so many post-debate polls and so many straw polls all across the country. How interesting. Doesn’t that mean that a small, active minority are doing all the heavy lifting? Yes. And it also means that a huge proportion of actual primary voters (7% or so of voters vote in the primaries) will be Ron Paul supporters. Every single one of us will vote! Not to mention that his campaign is growing by leaps and bounds and there is still time. It is a long shot, but it is possible that his passionate supporters and his powerful message of freedom will carry him to win the primary. I hope so.

    Comment by Tim — September 10, 2007 @ 4:53 pm
  84. So you’re comparing the congressman to the homeless guy you saw on the street. Ok then. Anyway at the end of the day Ron Paul will abolish this evil Federal Reserve and that’s who’s got my vote, well that’s if I was able to vote. Long live the Queen. Nah only joking she’s corrupt too.
    Oh and about education, haven’t you noticed America is one of the worse now. And you know why that is. I’ll tell you “because they want you to be stupid and believe every thing they say” i.e. you.

    Comment by Martin — September 10, 2007 @ 4:54 pm
  85. Chip,

    All excellent points.

    Until the day comes when we’re voting for artificial life forms, ground-pounders will always be needed, whether it’s knocking on doors or putting together a ballot access petition.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 5:07 pm
  86. UCrawford,

    Did you go to a public school? Did their history books stop at 1940 or something? Look it up lazy american. Know your history. Martin doesn’t have time to educate all the sheeple on the net. Wake up bro. You’ll probably be most happy when you lose all your constitutional rights and the government will take care of you from cradle to grave.

    Comment by atomic jo — September 10, 2007 @ 5:08 pm
  87. What the hell is going on here? Non you people were ever Ron’s supporters. If you are looking at those mean nothing polls, you can’t be very bright! Watch them scrambling to get him on there shows. They want to try and defame him. Can you say,”BLOWBACK!!!!”

    Comment by tom paul — September 10, 2007 @ 5:16 pm
  88. I have never been called for one, ever. Nor has anyone in my household or family? At the NH debate I can assure you, he had far more than 1 percent. And yes these people will actually vote. In all honesty, Rudy and McCain may have had a slight edge, Ron was next and then Huckabee,Romney. However, that is with practically no name recognition, it will only go up. The polls are bogus. He has been the biggest draw at every event he has attended since Iowa. I gauranty those people will vote.

    Comment by JohnnyB — September 10, 2007 @ 6:02 pm
  89. “I’ll believe what I’ve been told in school”

    aha, that’s the problem!

    Comment by Buckwheat — September 10, 2007 @ 6:08 pm
  90. The majority of people in the 18-45 age bracket do not have land lines. A super majority of most people that do have land lines have unlisted numbers.

    Gallup and the rest of the pollsters are in their death throws as their polls have been shown to be highly inaccurate by results of actual voting.

    Americans are dumping their land lines for mobile phones. This alone probably does not surprise and you may wonder why anyone cares. Well there is a segment that does care: telephone surveyors. You know those pesky callers you get right about the time you’re about to dig into that yummy Tater Tot casserole.

    According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), in 2006, one out of every eight households did not have a land line. CDC researcher Stephen Blumberg said that there was a trend towards fewer land lines in the last several years but it seems to have increased in 2006. The 13.7 percent of homes without phones represents those that have mobile phones and those that just don’t have a phone. The assumption is that many consumers are using cell phones instead of land lines.
    The question is, why does the CDC care? The answer is that they conduct a large number of telephone polls to gather information. If they can no longer call a certain percentage of the population then their sampling methods may not be as accurate.

    Comment by Joe Lawson — September 10, 2007 @ 6:10 pm
  91. Of every person that I have called today, not one of those personal numbers was a landline. I did call landlines that were businesses.

    So who among us called a personal landline today?

    Comment by Joe Lawson — September 10, 2007 @ 6:11 pm
  92. I wonder how Paul is polling in NH. Also people who go to debates are the people who care. Apparently among people who are motivated, he’s doing very well. It’s just a matter of convincing the rest I guess.

    But Paul supporters will have to move them away from their current position. Which is more difficult than just getting some support by default for the first tier candidates of the Mass Media.

    Comment by TanGeng — September 10, 2007 @ 6:13 pm
  93. I have never been called for one, ever. Nor has anyone in my household or family

    Using that logic, the fact that neither I, nor anyone I know, nor any member of my family has ever seen a Blue Whale must mean they don’t exist.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 6:17 pm
  94. UCrawford,

    What exactly were you taught in school about the Federal Reserve, and why do you think we shouldn’t abolish it?

    Comment by dms00 — September 10, 2007 @ 6:26 pm
  95. These polls are utter bunk. These polls only hit voters registered in the last election. Typical “registered voters” don’t vote in primary elections and people who support Ron Paul and watch debates and participate in straw polls and text message polls do vote in primary elections. Also, a lot of Ron Paul supporters haven’t voted in previous elections but will be voting in the upcoming primaries.

    If the primary election was conducted by calling every registered voter on a landline and forcing them to vote on the spot I’d be very concerned. However since a minority of Americans actually vote in primary elections and those same people are paying close attention to the debates and election news, and therefore know about Ron Paul and likely support his views, I’m very optimistic.

    Comment by Nash — September 10, 2007 @ 6:40 pm
  96. Who cares?

    He will never do well in polls. The typical gallup poll uses between 1200-1500 persons. 425 is too small to determine anything and is not scientific because the sample size is too small. They know it. I wonder why they had to use such a small number? Looks fishy.

    Also, I am so sick of the implication that if Ron Paul doesn’t have a chance you shouldn’t vote for him! So it is better to vote for a guy you don’t like? The 500 dollar prize for picking the winner stopped 75 years ago. Now all you get is guy you don’t like.

    For all anti-war folks out there, no matter what party, if you vote for Ron Paul then you have a chance in November of having two anti-war candidates on the ballot.

    Comment by John — September 10, 2007 @ 6:43 pm
  97. Look at the situation as a glass half full.

    Ron Paul is still the principled underdog and we all know people love an underdog. His competition in the realm of ideas is laughable at best, and call me naive but once all the pompous media circus bullshit about haircuts and “electability” is done, elections are won in the realm of ideas – yes even today. Pity that every election since Reagan has been totally devoid of ideas or principle.

    The beauty of the primary process is that the first primary is held in a state that is hugely active politically. If you have ideas and can get them out there in the primary, dont worry about media recognition. It will take care of itself.

    Thank you once again for your blog, Doug, it always is enjoyable to read even if there is the occasional crackpot.

    Comment by Daniel — September 10, 2007 @ 7:00 pm
  98. Still buying thr MSM lies? Who knows how the questions were asked and exactly who was asked. I have been polled, but once by a radio staion about the station. The questions were loaded. It was not a question of black and white, like “who would you vote for?” Does anyone have a sample of the polling questions?Would be nice to see them?

    Comment by RAY K — September 10, 2007 @ 7:05 pm
  99. I’d like to step in here with some comments regarding the Federal Reserve Bank. I have a fair idea of its role in the economy and I consider the claims made about it here to be unjustified. If one of the accusers would like to offer an indictment of the Fed — explaining what it does that is harmful to society — then I’ll be happy to explain the true situation as best I can.

    Comment by Chepe Noyon — September 10, 2007 @ 7:10 pm
  100. Since when have polls become holy writ in this country???

    Ron Paul is 3rd out of ALL of the Candidates in Campaign money, he also has far more grassroots passionate support than ANY Candidate from either side. This early in the election, it’s just plain ignorant to disqualify someone based on some idiotic controlled polling data.

    Go Ron GO!

    Lets show that Freedom still exists this 2008

    http://www.RonPaul2008.com

    Comment by Mr. Dylan — September 10, 2007 @ 7:42 pm
  101. What does anyone suppose the percentage on the polling data would have been right before the AMERICA REVOLUTION?

    Too bad we didn’t have Gallup back then, maybe we could have convinced everyone it would never happen. Saved everyone a whole lot of trouble.

    http://www.RonPaulLibrary.org

    Comment by Mr. Dylan — September 10, 2007 @ 7:47 pm
  102. I don’t know why I bother checking in at this poser site, but Doug, are we going to see you on the contributors list in a couple weeks time?

    If not, please cease the ‘we’ thing. You taint one of us.

    Comment by C Bowen — September 10, 2007 @ 7:55 pm
  103. Chepe;

    Real quick: the Federal Reserve has a monopoly on the value of currency so without any check or balances or need for elections, it can be used in place of raising, or lowering taxes, without that whole nasty risk of elections. In our 4 year yerm system, it means that a President might launch an illegal war and not pay for it, but rather debt finance it, thanks to the Federal Reserve.

    Comment by C Bowen — September 10, 2007 @ 7:57 pm
  104. I don’t necessary trust the validity of phone polls anymore because of the advent of cell phones and caller I.D. People who operate solely by cell phone or don’t answer numbers they don’t know. in addition these polls tend to exclude young people who have yet to vote.

    However, I expected this to happen once Fred entered the race. I expect that support to just as quickly dissipate once people hear Fred speak. Without a script the guy is about as interesting as watching mold grow.

    Ron Paul is earning much needed notoriety and support. The problem is that it isn’t coming from the people he needs, registered Republicans. Pauls support base is largely young people, disgruntled Democrats and some Republicans, Third Parties and independents which is a wonderful thing in a general election but won’t do dick for him in the primaries or the convention.

    While he will continue to get my whole hearted support and write-in if necessary, he only has approx. 6 months to convince the Republicans who worship at the altar of Rush O’Hannity and by the looks of things, time is running out.

    Comment by Larry — September 10, 2007 @ 8:04 pm
  105. dms00,

    I agree with abolishing the Federal Reserve. I just don’t agree that it had anything to do with Lincoln’s assassination.

    Comment by UCrawford — September 10, 2007 @ 8:21 pm
  106. Chepe Noyon,

    Article 1, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution says, “The Congress shall have power… To coin money, regulate the value thereof, and of foreign coin, and fix the standard of weights and measures.” The Federal Reserve was unconstitional from the start.

    The Federal Reserve works independently of the government, has no accountability, and does its work in secret meetings. They set interest rates which is essentially central economic planning, leading to our boom and bust business cycle. The Fed caused the Great Depression, the high inflation of the 1970s, and the recent real estate bubble. The U.S. economy is supposed to be based on free markets…interest rates should be set by the market.

    The Federal Reserve maintains a pro-inflationary policy and is responsible for eroding away the value of the dollar. In an effort to hide their inflationary actions, last year they stopped publishing the most important measure of the money supply, M3. They claimed it was too expensive to collect the data, but if that was the reason, they could have simply published it less frequently…quarterly or even annually. The Consumer Price Index (CPI) is a complete sham and is absolutely NOT an accurate measure of inflation.

    Famed economist and Nobel Laureate Milton Friedman advocated abolishing the Federal Reserve. He stated that the Federal Reserve failed at what it was meant to do (prevent events such as the Great Depression), that it’s method of controlling the money supply through interest rates was nonsensical, and that getting rid of it was one of the biggest unsolved economic problems.

    Comment by dms00 — September 10, 2007 @ 8:25 pm
  107. I don’t think the Fed had to do with Lincoln’s assassination either. So, let’s focus on what we do agree on. If someone claims, “we should get rid of the Fed because they killed Lincoln,” the best thing we could do would be to detail the real reasons why we should get rid of it, instead of bickering.

    Comment by dms00 — September 10, 2007 @ 8:31 pm
  108. Did anyone else watch Ron Paul on O’Reilly’s show tonight. I was rather disappointed in the Congressman’s effort. I wish he would be more precise in making his points.

    Comment by Ken H — September 10, 2007 @ 8:41 pm
  109. Hey everyone look, TheLibertyPapers is here to tell Paul supporters that the sky is falling…. again.

    I imagine if Paul does well the primaries all of a sudden it will be clear skies at the pessimist papers.

    It was more entertaining reading the rantings of Dondero than watching you all troll google news.

    Comment by Chicken Little — September 10, 2007 @ 8:51 pm
  110. CL,

    Did you even read what I wrote ?

    Do you think I’m happy that things aren’t going well ?

    Unlike apparently everyone else, though, I don’t think that Gallup, Fox News, George W. Bush, The Bilderbergers, and Frosty The Snowman are involved in a vast conspiracy to deny Ron Paul the Presidency.

    Admit it, this is a tough campaign. There’s alot of groundwork that needs to be done. Quite frankly, I know for a fact that alot of it has not been done. I know of at least one state with a primary in February where the process of getting Ron’s name on the ballot has barely even begun…..and the deadline is December 14th for 10,000 valid signatures of registered voters.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 9:02 pm
  111. Back to the polling data – what could possibly cause Paul’s numbers to go down? Fred Thompson? Thompson’s entrance is possibly the best thing that could have happened to his campaign as it creates huge divisions in the pro-war camp. Its been said many many times before but let me spin the question a new way:

    “How many people who supported Ron Paul have now moved to support Thompson because of his entrance into the race?”

    Now ask the same question but substituting Guiliani, Romney, etc etc. Its a good thing for Paul.

    In closing, does anyone recall that episode of Yes Prime Minister when there was a survey done about conscription? Sir Humphrey made a brilliant expose of how polling data is correlated – essentially you get the data you want.

    Comment by Daniel — September 10, 2007 @ 9:19 pm
  112. On the legality of the Federal Reserve: that has already been established by the Supreme Court. I believe that the basic justification comes from the monetary regulation clause, but as I recall, the Court also harkened back to the controversies over the national banking system in the early 1800s.

    “The Federal Reserve works independently of the government, has no accountability, and does its work in secret meetings.”

    Yep. Do you think it would carry out its mission more effectively if it didn’t do any of these things?

    “They set interest rates which is essentially central economic planning”

    No, it is not.

    “The Fed caused the Great Depression, the high inflation of the 1970s, and the recent real estate bubble.”

    The Fed did not cause the Depression, but its mistakes certainly amplified it. The high inflation of the 1970s had a lot more to do with the costs of the Vietnam war and the increase in the price of oil than the Fed. And the role of the Fed in the real estate bubble is pretty distant. Yes, you can trace a connection, but it’s not a tight one.

    “The Federal Reserve maintains a pro-inflationary policy and is responsible for eroding away the value of the dollar.”

    No, they don’t. One of their missions is to keep inflation under control. Some economists have suggested that the Fed places too much weight on this.

    “The Consumer Price Index (CPI) is a complete sham and is absolutely NOT an accurate measure of inflation.”

    There is no objectively reliable way to reduce the concept of inflation to a single dimension. You can argue in favor of almost any formula. The current formula represents a compromise.

    “Famed economist and Nobel Laureate Milton Friedman advocated abolishing the Federal Reserve.”

    I have a lot of respect for Mr. Friedman, but his ideas were definitely off the mainstream. There is plenty of room for debating the ideal strategy for the Fed to pursue, but abolishing it would be catastrophic to our economy. All major economies have central banks whose mission is to stabilize the economy. There are substantial differences in the specifics of their mission statements, but the concept has been tested and proven in a number of economies over many decades.

    Comment by Chepe Noyon — September 10, 2007 @ 9:27 pm
  113. Daniel,

    The fact that Paul’s numbers went down and Thompson’s numbers went up, does not mean that the 2% that support Paul in July went to Thompson.

    They could’ve gone back into the undecided camp.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 9:28 pm
  114. Polling samples are far to small to evaluate. In 2001 all the MSM pundits focused on GOP straw poll as the most reliable source. I might add the democrats approached the polling with the same conclusion. In 2004 Staw polls were once again the main source of polling.

    Do you folks realize how many polls there are? My research assistant provided 3 historic sources we then crossed referenced them with the last four elections cycles. We then pulled MSM articles to get a feel for the method of polling and even MSM at that time relied heavily on Straw Polls.

    Now in the market we also discover another 15 polling sources. If you googol the word poll or polling then you can see for yourself the huge resources to pull from most are online polls but 15 polling sources are MSM options.

    Keep in mind the attention on straw polls in the last four election cycles have always been NH, Iowa, and a few other states. NH is unique compared to other states of focus due to the small number of electoral votes one can obtain… The MSM does focus on states with double digit electoral votes for example Texas where Paul placed 3rd.

    I’m not a Texan but did visit the Texas straw polls and without a doubt Paul would have won the Texas straw poll had the restrictive voting not been in place. By the way some of the GOP members at the Texas straw Paul Paul supporters as democrats…. But the issue which should enrage any GOP was Gov Rick Perry and he stated that Texas didn’t have anyone running for the office of president. I could not believe what I heard.

    Doug and any other doubting supporter you need to only visit GOP sponsored polls to see how they treat Paul. I would not trust any of my fellow GOP members running the polls unless it’s a paper recording of the vote.

    My point is this… If you follow the history of major polling methods they used major state straw polls to prove support. It’s only with this election this has changed. In my view the reason it’s changed is the fact they desire to discredit Ron Paul with a less then valid polling method.

    They would much rather have a CFR member aboard then a someone who supports freedom the the voice of the people. But you have a choice and you can allow a little bit of MSM news get the best of you or you can fight like you will win for the sake of Paul or you can give up and get off the field. What will you do?

    Me, I still have my hockey stick and I’m running towards the goal…. He will win if you do something everyday to support his run. We will never have such a wonderful choice in the future. The last time we had a great candidate as Paul was when our founding fathers wrote the Constitution

    Besides they can poll any area of the country and folks they have it down to a science they can even predict what the results will be within a margin of error of 1.5% (Just visit some of the popular polling sites the data is posted on many of their sites).

    Thus far we have seen the Republican Party:

    1) Suggest a petition should be started to remove Paul from all debates.

    2) We have witnessed a Limited Tax and Christian Group deny his attendance in Iowa to discuss taxes and his pro-life agenda.

    3) We have seen Fox news lie about his online poll numbers and claim as recent as last week that Rudy and McCain won the debate.

    4) We saw Chris Wallace suggest Ron Paul obtains his marching orders for al-ciada (the CIA actually created al-Qaeda

    I could list another 9 points but I’m sleepy and need to get some sleep.

    I would have no doubt they would pay off the poll sources to show a lower number. They facts don’t support the poll number. Or maybe the poll source simply noted the location of Fred’s supporters and called most of Fred’s’ support. Anyone can obtain the source of support and plot a program to canvas the map of the U.S. and focus on a subsection of the GOP. It’s happened in the past.

    The fact is Paul’s support across the nation has grown even online indicators can prove this point.

    I was at the recent debate in person and based on the support outside the center and inside half of the people were Paul supporters….

    Comment by Darel99 — September 10, 2007 @ 9:36 pm
  115. Darel,

    How `bout some links for all this evidence you claim to have ?

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 9:40 pm
  116. I noticed this aricle today:

    It’s a great article about Ron Paul at World Net Daily.

    The Ron Paul Epiphany

    http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=57545

    Comment by Darel99 — September 10, 2007 @ 9:41 pm
  117. I wonder if the people polled are the sameone’s in that diner during the Fox debate? Carefully chosen.

    Comment by Andy — September 10, 2007 @ 9:54 pm
  118. Ah yes, World Net Daily.

    The Web Site that told me three years ago that Osama bin Laden had acquired the access codes to secretly buried Russian suitcase nukes and was going to detonate them on August 6th to create an “American Hiroshima”

    But wait that was back in 2004……oops.

    Next time try Weekly World News.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 10, 2007 @ 9:54 pm
  119. Hi Doug,

    Once my assistant completes my request I will be in a better position to join the facts with a taped interview and will be happy to send you the article…. I can either send it direct to your e-mail address or I can post it on a future Liberty Post. So far was have 92 hours of research ( I just looked at the cost report to find out how much time I have in this request). My planning? I intend to join the facts with a video interview with a campaign strategist from former senate GOP members from the late 80′s and early 90′s. I even have a little surprise that we have already received regarding the G. H. Bush run

    We are planning to do in home interview this Saturday and we are about 95% sure the appointment will not change. My plan at the moment is to imbed the interview as a youtube link with our actual article. If we have to delay the posting of the article for two weeks then I will delay sending my article out. However, I feel the facts need to be available rather sooner then later so I will release the article no later then the first weekend of this month regardless of the interview.

    We are also trying to get approval from ABC and CBS to use actual footage to prove our points but if you have ever worked with copy write approvals for video then you realize it can take a week or six weeks and sometimes they never provide the cocent. We have also located about 3 hours of MSM news reporters from every major network talking about the worth of GOP straw polls and how they are more accurate then other polling methods. Of course they use other polling methods but the fact is they state it’s more important to place well at straw polls then other polling sources. In fact G. W. Bush did an interview and stated that he would rather win an actual GOP straw poll then other polling sources because he knew someone took the time to caste a vote in person. Carl Rove even states the greater value of winning a straw poll.

    Comment by Darel99 — September 10, 2007 @ 10:06 pm
  120. Doug,

    I didn’t offer the link to WND as a token of my support of WND but rather a link to an article written by Vox Day. I must admit I don’t trust Joseph Farah on many topics in my view he is just another neocon… But he does offer some articles which are filled with details and truth and Corsi is a great writer as well.

    Yes, I do remember the article you are talking about. It was everywhere on AOL, Netscape I know I received at least 200 requsts to post it myself.

    I also realize Joseph provided an article about what he would do with the mere words of threat and had he been in office he would have attacked them with nukes three years ago.

    At least we agree on some points :)

    But I also must state Corsi offers great details about the NAU the a recent article about veriChip was informative.

    I have read Vox Day’s articles and I must admit he is a great writer…. He offered a great Ron Paul article.

    Have a nice night… Let me know how you want to receive the article? I can send it direct to your email address or post it on liberty.

    Comment by Darel99 — September 10, 2007 @ 10:20 pm
  121. Point taken about moving to the undecided camp, but ill rely on empirical evidence that Paul supporters, once converted, are unlikely to move. Thats the advantage of having dedicated support. These polls do seem at odds with the rest of the press exposure that Paul is getting.

    Comment by Daniel — September 10, 2007 @ 11:27 pm
  122. Doug,

    I agree with what I take to be your underlying point: Stop focusing on mainstream media conspiracy theories (even if they do exist), and focus on the nuts and bolts of: “How to win”.

    This is good advice.

    Youtube is great. Text Polls and Straw Polls and Meetup are all great too. All these show support and help the cause. We can all debate forever how much we guess they help, but they do help.

    But 1% polls don’t help (no matter how significant anyone thinks they are). Negative information needs to be overcome. Discounting and ignoring it is one response, but I’d argue it’s the least effective response we could muster.

    What would happen if we used all the brainpower of the people posting in favor of Ron Paul (here and elsewhere), in order to develop methods to get Ron Paul’s name and message out?

    The guy who put a huge Ron Paul slogan on the roof of a building under a New York flight path is doing more for Ron Paul than all of us posting here ad infinitum.

    Let’s use this brainpower to get Ron Paul’s name out. Post a suggestion.

    Here’s my first question: How many posters have registered Republican, and have the date and location of their primary or caucus on their calendar? All of this means nothing if you didn’t know whether you had to be registered Republican or not. States differ. Check here for your state.

    If we want to help Dr. Paul get elected, it’s about concretes. The old quote is true: “Decisions are made by the people who show up.”

    Comment by Akston — September 10, 2007 @ 11:28 pm
  123. Chepe Noyon,

    Under the current system, Congress does NOT have the power to coin money and regulate its value, while the Constitutional says that Congress shall have that power (“shall” meaning “must” in legal language). It’s crystal clear, then, that the Federal Reserve System is illegal.

    Re: “Do you think it would carry out its mission more effectively if it didn’t do any of these things?”

    Its mission of what? Increasing economic stability? Preventing events like the Great Depression? Controlling inflation? It’s done none of those things that we were told it was supposed to do.

    Re: “No, it’s not.”

    The Federal Reserve sets the price of money. Setting prices is the very definition of economic planning. If you’re going to disagree, you should at least make an intelligent point instead of childishly saying “no, it’s not” to what I say. I recently completed a degree in economics so I know what I’m talking about, much more than the average person.

    Re: “One of their missions is to keep inflation under control. ”
    No, the Federal Reserve CAUSES inflation. They print money out of thin air on the premise that they need to lower the interest rate. Economic theory does not relate interest rates to the money supply!

    Re: “There is no objectively reliable way to reduce the concept of inflation to a single dimension. You can argue in favor of almost any formula. The current formula represents a compromise.”

    The cause of inflation is an increase in the money supply. The Fed has stopped publishing the most important definition of the money supply in order to even further hide what they’re doing. No formula for the CPI would be completley accurate, but the current CPI formula is a sham. The Clinton Administration manipulated it in the 1990s in order to reduce the reported inflation rate, to increase his popularity and help me get reelected. If we were to use the older CPI formula, the reported inflation rate would be about double what they say it is today.

    Re: “I have a lot of respect for Mr. Friedman, but his ideas were definitely off the mainstream.”

    What? I don’t understand how you can say such a thing. His ideas were off the mainstream maybe in the 50s and 60s, but eventually his ideas *BECAME* the mainstream. His views strongly influenced the administrations of Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher. Until Friedman, the mainstream theory was that high taxes (70%!) and government intervention were needed to prevent the economy from self-destructing. Nothing could have been further from the truth, and Friedman eventually convinced us how free markets and limited government result in the most prosperous outcome. Even Ben Bernanke has acknowledged how very influential Friedman was. In 2003 he said, “Friedman’s monetary framework has been so influential that, in its broad outlines at least, it has nearly become identical with modern monetary theory.”

    Comment by dms00 — September 10, 2007 @ 11:47 pm
  124. dms00, the Constitution gives Congress the right to coin money and set its value. Congress then creates an institution — the Fed — to carry out that policy. The Fed is operating under the authority of Congressional legislation. How can this possibly be illegal?

    You ask about the mission of the Federal Reserve. Here is the mission statement. It includes price stabilization and preserving the integrity of the banking system, among other things.

    You argue that since the Federal Reserve failed to prevent the Depression and failed to dampen inflation in the 1970s, it is a failure. This is absurd. The Fed’s past failures does not deny its past successes. And if you compare the 90 years prior to the Fed with the 90 years since, I think you’ll agree that the American banking system has been much, much better off since the creation of the Fed.

    “Setting prices is the very definition of economic planning.”

    No, it is not. Show me that definition. Economic planning involves intervention all across the economy, setting both production targets and prices. The Fed controls just one dial on the economy: the cost of short-term money. We can agree that the Fed does try to plan for the best outcome, and that its planning does have an effect on the economy. But I do not agree that the Fed has anything like control over the economy.

    “The cause of inflation is an increase in the money supply.”

    No, inflation is the result of the money supply increasing faster than the increase in the value of assets in the economy. Now, there are multiple definitions of money supply, as you likely know. Some of this will show natural increase in the money supply independent of any action by the Fed. But if the increase in the money supply falls short of the increase in the overall value of the goods and services accumulated by the country, then the economy experiences deflation — which can be just as bad as inflation.

    “Economic theory does not relate interest rates to the money supply!”

    Uh, wow…

    “I don’t understand how you can say such a thing.” [That Mr. Friedman's views are off the mainstream].

    Friedman’s monetarist theories were indeed quite influential, but they never became mainstream. They have been integrated into the larger world view of economic theory, but have been watered down in the process. Monetarism is a useful way of thinking about macroeconomics, but it’s certainly not the only way nor even the best way — although you can find economists who do maintain that it’s the best way.

    Lastly, I’d like to remind you of the history of the American banking system in the latter nineteenth century. It was a disaster! There were all sorts of really serious problems, and a great many people were cheated out of gigantic amounts of money. And the banking system back then was the pinnacle of pure free market capitalism. It didn’t work.

    Comment by Chepe Noyon — September 11, 2007 @ 12:26 am
  125. These polls are trash! Ignore them.

    Comment by Raymond — September 11, 2007 @ 12:44 am
  126. Chepe,

    1. Please highlight a successful intervention by the Fed and ill highlight the exacerbation of an asset bubble.

    2. Price controls are bad (if you disagree with this, then let me know and we will stop our discussion right away), yet a central bank controls the price of the most valuable economic commodity, being money. This is a irreconcilable contradiction.

    3. Ill go with the definition of inflation being an increase of money supply. Your definition, being linked to the value of assets in the economy, presents the logical difficulty in that “value” is linked to money, which is linked to how much money there is in an economy, which is linked to the original definition of inflation.

    4. Figuring out which is worse, inflation/deflation, is a futile attempt at logic. Wild swings or big boom/bust cycles is what causes economic hardship.

    5. Setting prices may not be the very definition of economic planning, if one was to be pedantic, as there are other factors which can be identified. Lets just say that it is impossible to have a free market economy in the face of price controls.

    6. Is the popularity of an idea really indicative of its validity? Whether Friedman was “mainstream” or not is a pointless discussion.

    7. The American banking system in the latter 19th century was only a disaster to the extent that the government got involved with its attempts to create a central bank, enlarge governemnt and inflate. Its the old straw man argument – “there were some hard times during this period therefore capitalism doesnt work”.

    What I can say is that if I banked $1,000.00 in 1800 and took it out in 1900 it would keep its value to a large degree. If i did the same thing between 1900 and 2000 (heck, 1990 and 2000 even), then I would be losing value in my money

    8. As it is impossible for humanity to make infallible economic judgments (i.e. predict the future) – there will always be market inefficiencies. In today’s world we are caught up in a fantasy which is trying to prevent an economic slowdown from ever happening – enter fractional reserve banking and monetary policy. The only sound monetary policy is not to have a monetary policy.

    Comment by Daniel — September 11, 2007 @ 12:50 am
  127. Chepe,

    Read the Constitution: “The Congress shall have power…to coin money, regulate the value thereof…” Does the Congress have the power today to coin money and regulate its value? No, because of the Federal Reserve Act, Congress no longer has that power.

    The fact that Congress itself created the Fed doesn’t matter. The Constitution does NOT allow Congress to take the power away from itself! The word “shall” in law means “must” or “obliged to” — it does not imply that something is optional; it means it’s mandatory. It’s mandatory that CONGRESS, and NOT an agency created by Congress, has that power.

    Moving on…

    The Fed sets the price of money, not the market, and that’s economic planning. Whenever you force a price upon a market, you’re planning it. They’re not planning the WHOLE economy, obviously, but they do manipulate an extremely important market.

    Instead of saying “Uh, wow,” please explain why it makes sense for a central bank to set interest rates via manipulating the money supply.

    Other Economists in addition to Friedman have called for overhauling or abolishing the Fed. I’m not going to pretend to be as smart as them, but I can see that the Fed is unconstitutional, secretive, manipulative, and concentrates power into the hands of a tiny group of people who are immune from being held accountable by the government or the American people.

    Comment by dms00 — September 11, 2007 @ 1:07 am
  128. Also Chepe, while the Fed has had failures and successes, the only thing the Fed really has done successfully is to fix problems that it created in the first place. The Fed causes the boom/bust, expansion/recession business cycle that we’re all sick of experiencing.

    Daniel, I agree with you completely. You apparently posted while I was writing my response. You made some great points that I didn’t even think of, so thanks for your input.

    Comment by dms00 — September 11, 2007 @ 1:19 am
  129. The only “poll” that has any merit are the votes in the primaries and even those can be rigged. I wouldn’t put any faith in any measure other then the real elections and only those where there are checks and balances to make sure they are a real count.

    Comment by Elizabeth — September 11, 2007 @ 9:00 am
  130. Elizabeth,
    So you’re saying that any effort to elect any candidate is a waste of time? After all if the primaries/elections are rigged what’s the point of trying? Should we all just lay back and enjoy the ride? (If you aren’t a Paul supporter I encourage you to follow your own advice and stop trying!)

    Comment by Bob — September 11, 2007 @ 9:26 am
  131. Daniel:

    1. The way to measure the Fed’s success is to compare it with situations in which the Fed did not intervene. The best such situation is the history of the American economy prior to the creation of the Fed. Do you seriously want to argue that the 90 years prior to the creation of the Fed were times of economic stability? C’mon! The Fed was created to solve serious financial problems that had cost citizens many millions of dollars. The fact that the overall history of the last ninety years shows less instability than the previous ninety years is the proof of the value of the Fed.

    2. Yes, price controls are bad — but the Fed doesn’t control the price of money in the economy. It sets the price of the money that it loans to banks in its system. That in turn influences the price of money set by those banks, and the effects ripple out through the economy. But the price of money is affected by many factors, and the Fed’s influence is secondary. They’re steering a raft through a white water river with a small paddle.

    3. You’re welcome to define inflation by the phase of the moon for all I care — but that doesn’t make it so. Here, let me show you how it works: imagine an economy consisting of two apples and two dollars. The price of an apple is therefore one dollar. Now, add one dollar to the economy. The price of an apple is now $1.50 — that’s inflation. Now add one apple to the economy. The price of an apple is now $1.00. Now add another apple to the economy. The price of an apple is now $0.75 — that’s deflation.

    4. Agreed. That’s why one of the missions of the Fed is to help stabilize the economy.

    5. This is black-and-white thinking: either you’re slave or you’re free. The world is more accurately painted in shades of gray. Yes, the Fed makes the market slightly less free. It also provides greater security to the participants in the market. This is the classic tradeoff all societies must make between freedom and security. I don’t like the loss of freedom represented by having to stop at a red light, but the fact that everybody else stops at the red light makes it safe for me to cross.

    6. Agreed. So let’s just leave Friedman out of this discussion and concentrate on the ideas, OK?

    7. The problems of the American financial system in the late nineteenth century were not due to government intervention — there was very little government intervention. The problems were due to a number of factors arising from the absence of government intervention. Primary among these were the existence of insufficiently capitalized banks, the lack of public confidence in the banking system, and the injurious manipulation of the financial system by individuals.

    8. More black-and-white thinking. The purpose of a central bank is not to achieve perfection but to reduce undesirable fluctuations in the financial system. The fact that the Fed does not achieve perfection is not an argument against its existence. The proper analysis is to compare it against its absence — and that comparison, when made on a historical basis, yields a very clear result.

    dms00 continues to press the unconstitutionality argument, arguing that, since Congress doesn’t actually do the work itself, it doesn’t have the power to do the work. Congress still retains the power to do the work itself; it can always revoke the legislation authorizing the Fed. It can alter that legislation at any time. What’s the problem here?

    Comment by Chepe Noyon — September 11, 2007 @ 10:29 am
  132. Oops. I failed to explain my “Uh, wow…” comment. It was a response to this statement:

    “Economic theory does not relate interest rates to the money supply!”

    Interest rates are just the price of money. The money supply is the supply of money. When the supply goes up, the price goes down. When the supply goes down, the price goes up. That’s the first rule of economic theory.

    Comment by Chepe Noyon — September 11, 2007 @ 10:39 am
  133. Doug,

    I polled 425 people and Ron Paul got 63% of those polled. Giuliani only got 3%. Go figure. You might want to reference this poll too. It makes as much sense as any other poll.

    It matters not except the final poll which is when folks actually cast their ballot. The heartbeat of America is growing stronger for Ron Paul each and every day. It’s a long way until next November. Keep the faith!

    Comment by Larry — September 11, 2007 @ 11:11 am
  134. Larry,

    That’s like saying I polled ten of my drinking buddies and 100% like to drink beer.

    If the sample doesn’t even at least try to be random, and representative of the group you’re trying to learn about as a whole, then it’s meaningless.

    Comment by Doug Mataconis — September 11, 2007 @ 11:22 am
  135. The purpose of the Fed is to create debt for the benefit of the richest banks – that’s all. Did the Fed prevent the Depression? Does anyone think that an institution owned and controlled by foreign banks and globalist American banks is working for the benefit for the ordinary citizen of America.
    Give me a break.

    Comment by G .Stark — September 11, 2007 @ 4:53 pm
  136. Let us assume that Ron Paul has exactly 0 support outside of internet user. It still just about defies logic that he would be polling at 1 percent, given the ever increasing popularity he has on the internet. I have never seen such positive and enthusiastic support for one candidate.

    I smell a rat.

    Comment by G .Stark — September 11, 2007 @ 4:58 pm
  137. So a big polling company makes $50 worth of phone calls and we’re supposed to take it as gospel truth. Ha ha ha.

    Comment by gao xia en — September 11, 2007 @ 5:47 pm
  138. It is obvious by looking at these polls that the people being polled are not paying attentioon to who is running. They are voting by name recognition only. It is so sad. I cry for America. Millions upon millions of dangerous, uneducated voters are ruining this country.

    Guiliani is in the lead because everyone knows him as a long time Mayor of NY. I think he did a great job in NY. However, I would never trust him in a million years with my foreign policy. Good mayor does not mean good president.

    Next is Fred Thompson. Again most people know for his many TV and film rolls. They have no clue of his political career. Yet they are willing to vote for him because they figure if you can play a political leader on TV, the real thing can’t be that much harder.

    I am so scared…………. please join me America.

    Comment by Travis — September 12, 2007 @ 9:55 am
  139. Do Giuliani’s millions count for everything and Ron Paul’s Meetup groups count for nothing?

    If there are 20,000 Meetup groups, each with an average of five members, that’s 100,000 people volunteering their time. At $10 an hour, that’s $1,000,000. Not per group — per every time they meet. So if they meet once a week, that’s a million bucks a week. If they participate in activities inbetween meetings, that’s even more.

    How much of Giuliani’s millions are coming from corporate donors and special interests who are hedging their bets? Even with the individual donors, how much money is coming from those who derive their wealth from government, and back the apparent winners just to be on the good side of whoever is in power?

    All we know for sure is that the race isn’t over yet.

    Comment by Joe Schembrie — September 13, 2007 @ 3:32 pm
  140. It doesn’t matter to me what the polls say. He is the champion of the Constitution, so he gets my vote. Plain and simple.

    I do hope however, that if he doesn’t get the GOP nomination, then he’ll run as an independent. I think he’ll stand a chance against Hilary as the Dem’s choice and Rudy as the Rep’s choice.

    Comment by Michelle — September 24, 2007 @ 12:04 am
  141. Paul ran as 3rd party candidate in ’88. He carried 0 sates and won about 1/2 of 1% of the popular vote. The campaign spent most of its time trying to get him on ballot. I doubt he’ll try that again.

    Comment by Bob — September 24, 2007 @ 5:17 am

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