Author Of The Ron Paul Newsletter Outed?

After speaking with multiple sources (many of them off-the-record) and going through a publishing history, Reason Magazine has added weight to the suspicions of many on who was responsible for the Ron Paul newsletter…current Ron Paul advisor Lew Rockwell.  From the tone of the article nobody else seems to come close as a prime suspect, except anarcho-capitalist icon Murray Rothbard (who is now dead and unavailable for comment).  Rockwell’s denied the allegations but there don’t appear to be a swarm of people coming to his defense.  Of course, we’ll never know for certain unless the guilty party does step forward or someone provides evidence to point him out, but it seems pretty clear that Rockwell had some significant level of involvement with the newsletter (he benefited financially from it according to Reason) and as such if Ron Paul expects libertarians to believe he had nothing to do with the sentiments in those newsletters when one of the chief beneficiaries of that newsletter is still one of his key advisors I think he’s got some explaining to do…something more convincing than the “I have no clue what was going on because I’m an incompetent manager” defense.

And to the commenter on an earlier thread who claimed that Murray Rothbard was very capable of writing some of the more offensive things in the newsletter, based on what I read in the Reason article you were right and I was wrong.  Kudos for being able to recognize the stench.

I Can’t Think Of A Catchy Title

I suppose the best way to describe myself would be to say that I have a problem with authority. I’ve always disliked when people told me what to do, even as a young child, and I’ve always preferred to find my own path through life and make my own decisions, even if it occasionally went against the conventional wisdom and sometimes worked to my short-term disadvantage. My dad said I inherited it from him, but that I’ve taken it to a whole new level. When I was young I wanted to be a journalist, until I got to college and realized that journalism was less about the search for objective truth than it was about writing the stories that best suited your employer’s interests, whether they were true or not (which didn’t sit well with me at all). So I drifted aimlessly through a couple of years of college as an indifferent (often drunk) student, unsure of what to do with myself until one of my fraternity brothers gave me a copy of “The Fountainhead” and I got hooked on the ideas that success and a refusal to conform to societal standards were not mutally exclusive, and that the greatest evil in the world was society and government’s failure to recognize or accept individuality and individual freedom as a strength, not a weakness. So I threw myself into studying politics and history, worked in a few political campaigns after college, had some success, and thought about doing a career in politics until I realized that most of the people I knew who had never had a career outside of politics had no comprehension of how the real world actually worked and tended to make a lot of bad, self-absorbed decisions that rarely helped the people they claimed to be representing.

That didn’t sit well with me either, so I decided to put any thoughts of going into politics on hold until I’d actually had a life and possibly a real career, and I spent the next couple of years drifting between a series of random yet educational jobs (debt collector, deliveryman, computer salesman, repo man, dairy worker) that taught me the value of hard work, personal responsibility and the financial benefits of dining at Taco John’s on Tuesday nights (2 tacos for a buck) when money got tight.

After awhile, however, the desire to see the world (and the need for a more consistent and slightly larger paycheck) convinced me to join the Army, where I spent ten years traveling around the world on the government dime working as an intelligence analyst. I generally enjoyed my time in the military, despite the aforementioned problem with authority (which wasn’t as much of an issue in the military as many people might think it would be), and I got to see that the decisions our political leaders make were sometimes frivolous, often ill-informed, and always had unforeseen repercussions down the road…especially on the soldiers tasked with implementing those decisions. I was fortunate enough to spend most of my 10 years in the military doing jobs I enjoyed, traveling to countries that I always wanted to see (Scotland is the greatest place in the world to hang out, Afghanistan is very underrated) and working with people I liked and respected, until I finally decided that at 35 it was time to move into a job where I didn’t have the threat of relocation lying over my head every two or three years, where I didn’t have to worry about my friends being blown up, and where I didn’t have to work in any capacity for George W. Bush.

I work now for a financial company in Kansas where I’m responsible for overseeing, pricing and maintaining farms, commercial and residential properties, mineral assets, insurance policies, annuities, etc. In my spare time I like to read books on economics, history, and politics (I’m preparing to tackle Murray Rothbard’s “Man, Economy & State” and Von Mises’ “Human Action”…should take me about a year at the rate I’m currently finishing books), watch movies, and destroy posers on “Halo 3″ (where I’m signed in under “UCrawford” for anyone interested in taking a shot at me some time). I used to play rugby until age, inconsistent conditioning, and a string of gradually worsening injuries finally convinced me to quit. I’m a rabid fan of the Kansas Jayhawks in general and their basketball and football programs in particular and I’m also a devoted fan of the Kansas City Chiefs and Royals. I’m also fond of going online and debating/picking fights with people on the merits of the philosophy of individual freedom…sometimes to the point of being an asshole (but hopefully a reasonably well-informed asshole). I’ve been a big fan of The Liberty Papers ever since finding it online, I respect the body of work they’ve put out, and I’m honored that Brad Warbiany invited me to join his jolly band of freedom fighters. So cheers, Brad, and to everyone else I look forward to reaching consensus or locking horns with you in the near future.

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  • lulu

    Clutching at straws again?
    Try the NAACP…perhaps they can set you of in the right direction!

  • Patty

    At this point – does anyone really care?? It’s really a non-issue. Paul didn’t write it – and he owned up to the mistake of not vetting articles carefully. Whoever wrote the articles should remain obscure and not given any attention.

  • Powell

    Grow up.

    The US isn’t a country where a bunch of highly literate white males (like most libertarians and the Founding Fathers) run the show anymore. It hasn’t been since the the turn of the twentieth century or the 1960’s. One could argue either.

    In libertarian electoral politics, you don’t have a prayer if you try to appeal, through paeans to privatized highways and militias, to “Shaniquaa”, “Jose” and all the sorry whites who were mostly educated by MTV and government schools. They have neither the time nor the inclination to pursue those worthwhile but often pedantic arguments, what with the 37 hours a week they’re putting in at Wendy’s.

    You have to appeal to things that are possible and that matter, in a concrete way, to people. For a libertarian president, that is a program of — nothing. Stymieing Congress through constant vetoes. And yes… allowing certain un-PC voluntary associations to displace those of the state.

    With the end of housing discrimination laws, whites won’t have to flee to ever more distant suburbs to escape what they see as criminal minority populations. That’s life! Libertarianism doesn’t promise utopia. It promises freedom for everyone.

    A Ron Paul administration promises something everyone can agree on, from the middle-of -the-road American, to the Objectivist libertarian, to the hardcore right and left wings… that is, a moment to do nothing… to breathe… and ask ourselves, “What the hell is going on here?”

  • Max

    “Whoever wrote the articles should remain obscure and not given any attention”

    Just like the authors of this website ROFL

  • Anthony

    This contributor must be as bored as I am… wake me up when we can talk about policies and other real issues.

  • http://dangerouslyidealistic.blogspot.com/ UCrawford

    Patty,

    Whoever wrote the articles should remain obscure and not given any attention.

    I’d agree, if it didn’t appear that Ron Paul still had them as key advisors to his campaign.

  • Jeff

    McCarthyism is just in the nature of a few reporters who have nothing constructive to offer their readers.
    They feel duty bound to report without substantial proof by sourcing other reporters who had no substantial proof. Disgusting!
    I agree with Max’s comments above.

  • David Wooten

    Ron Paul has delivered more African-American babies into the world than any other presidential candidate, Republican or Democrat.

  • http://dangerouslyidealistic.blogspot.com/ UCrawford

    Anthony,

    This contributor must be as bored as I am… wake me up when we can talk about policies and other real issues.

    Don’t worry, although I may comment on other threads I don’t plan to write anymore posts myself about Ron Paul. He’s not going to win and I don’t like any of the other candidates so I’ll find other topics that are relevant to a pro-freedom agenda. Anything in particular you’ve got in mind?

  • http://dangerouslyidealistic.blogspot.com/ UCrawford

    Jeff,

    They feel duty bound to report without substantial proof by sourcing other reporters who had no substantial proof.

    You’re right. The concrete facts are that the newsletter went out under Ron Paul’s name, with his approval and he garnered a substantial amount of cash from it personally. That’s really all that matters. So when he claims that the newsletter he sponsored, lent his name to, and was paid by doesn’t gibe with his views, then we don’t need to find the author…we should simply assume that Ron Paul has endorsed racism because he’s the one ultimately responsible for what he publishes under his name.

    Good point.

  • Jeff

    “I’ll find other topics that are relevant to a pro-freedom agenda.”

    UCrawford,
    How about, the falling dollar and our fiat currency. Or Civil liberties and how the patriot act rapes them. Or Empire. Or War on “whatever”, what it costs the taxpayers in dollars and freedoms.
    But then how do talk about such things and completely ignore the one candidate talking about it.
    US Citizen vs. State citizen. What the 14th Amendment really did to us.
    Do a story on the legal definition, from early law dictionaries like Black’s and Bouvier’s, of the word PEOPLE, as in “we the people” without ignoring the word “nation”.

    Bouvier’s Law dictionary 1856 – PEOPLE. A state; as, the people of the state of New York; a nation in its collective and political capacity. 4 T. R. 783. See 6 Pet. S. C. Rep. 467.

    Black’s Law 1st thru 4th Editions – 1891-1974 – PEOPLE. A state; as, the people of the state of New York; a nation in its collective and political capacity. 4 Term R. 783.
    Glad to help.

  • Jeff

    “with his approval” implying that he directly signed off on them?

    “we should simply “assume” that Ron Paul has endorsed racism” “ASSUME” is what you guys do to much of. That is why these articles don’t merit much attention!
    I’m glad, at least for now, that the courts don’t convict on assumption alone. You should have a higher standard. You can be better than this.
    Assume!

  • Dith

    There is no way Rothbard wrote those. He was writing things favorable to blacks at that time, even adocating expropriating land to turn over to families to slaves.

  • http://dangerouslyidealistic.blogspot.com/ UCrawford

    Jeff,

    How about, the falling dollar and our fiat currency. Or Civil liberties and how the patriot act rapes them. Or Empire. Or War on “whatever”, what it costs the taxpayers in dollars and freedoms.

    I’ve covered some of those (PATRIOT Act, “empire”, and the war) on my own blog. I agree about the falling dollar and I don’t care about fiat currency. I’ll probably write about the first three things again at some point here.

    The rest of your first post was gibberish and non-sequiturs that ran all over the place so I’m not even going to bother attempting to address them until you come up with a coherent argument to state your position.

    “ASSUME” is what you guys do to much of. That is why these articles don’t merit much attention!

    FACT: The newsletters in Ron Paul’s name went out with his endorsement, whether or not he had a hand in day-to-day management.

    FACT: Ron Paul profited monetarily and by reputation from those newsletters at the time they went out. They were an issue in his 1996 bid for office.

    FACT: Ron Paul has denied authorship but has not named either the author of the articles or the editor of the newsletter, nor has he given any indication those people were removed from his circle…he has merely said that it was a long time ago and that it doesn’t matter (dodging responsibility).

    We can therefore reasonably assume that 1) he’s either lying about holding those beliefs or 2) that he did a poor job of vetting the people who worked for him then and that if Lew Rockwell (who is still working with Paul) was the author or editor of that newsletter then Ron Paul’s judgment hasn’t improved much over the last decade. Either assumption should automatically disqualify him from serious consideration for the White House for libertarians.

    I’m glad, at least for now, that the courts don’t convict on assumption alone. You should have a higher standard.

    Courts have a higher standard because they’re the government and they impose punitive measures to deprive us of life, liberty and property. I’m not depriving Ron Paul of anything except my vote. I also believe that any reasonable person should do the same thing based on his failure to live up to his own standards of accountability or to demonstrate that he’d be an effective President (where the ability to appoint quality people to important positions is a necessary skill).

  • http://publiusendures.blogspot.com Mark

    Jeff wrote:
    “I’m glad, at least for now, that the courts don’t convict on assumption alone. You should have a higher standard.”

    I have news for you- in a civil case, this one would have been won on summary judgment. In a criminal case, I have a hard time seeing where the “reasonable doubt” comes from with respect to whether Paul knew what was going out under his name.

  • http://dangerouslyidealistic.blogspot.com/ UCrawford

    Dith,

    There is no way Rothbard wrote those. He was writing things favorable to blacks at that time, even adocating expropriating land to turn over to families to slaves.

    Apparently Murray Rothbard changed a lot in his later years. The Reason article pointed out instances where he advocating “unleashing the police” against people he considered undesirable.

    http://www.reason.com/news/show/124426.html

    And his hatred of the state was sold through a hatred of the “underclass” to appeal to angry taxpayers (primarily white) who might buy in.

    I was disappointed to hear it too.

    Jeff,

    Jacob Sullum just published another article on Reason that agrees with my sentiments pretty much exactly:

    http://www.reason.com/news/show/124417.html

  • uhm

    All the cowards should come forward and speak all they know about it. It’s obvious they were going for the social conservative vote.

  • DefendTheConstitution

    Today racism is openly declared against Muslims and you’re waffling on about these newsletters that were written back during the race riots in Los Angeles when even Robin Williams was throwing around racist jokes on national TV?

    How about the overt racism and hostility shown to the Muslim world by the other Republican candidates today? This is coming out of their own mouths on the debate stage but you guys seem to be completely oblivious to it. You’ve got these madmen running for president and yet you’re wasting your time lambasting Ron Paul of all people who has never stooped to making reckless overtly racist comments against any group in any of his speeches, interviews or books!

    Gain some perspective and look at what is happening to your damn country as you argue over these petty comments from decades ago. You have candidates that border on the insane advocating violent pre-emptive war against the Muslim world all in the name of the “global war on terror” – isn’t that pretty damn racist? And doesn’t dropping bombs have slightly more impact on a group of people than a handful of comments that were made in some newsletters that are not directly attributable to Dr Ron Paul.

    Wake up people!

  • Michael Costello

    Way to lose some respect, and show true colors with your revealingly dismissive and mocking choice to use the term “Paulestinian” in commentary elsewhere, I hope you come to reconsider your position with respect to Ron Paul.

    This sort of thing Coming from echo chamber Statists like Red State and full on binary political left wingers like Wonkette was something I could see coming, but from people who are supposedly on the side of the cause of liberty, well, it gives me pause, I feel a bit betrayed.

  • http://thelibertypapers.org/2005/11/22/a-bit-about-kevin/ Kevin

    DefendTheConstitution:

    How about the overt racism and hostility shown to the Muslim world by the other Republican candidates today? This is coming out of their own mouths on the debate stage but you guys seem to be completely oblivious to it.

    Who is advocating racism against Muslims?

  • http://thomasblair.livejournal.com Brian T. Traylor

    I can’t help but wonder what is the relevance of the “incompetent manager” jab that UCrawford, Doug, Reason’s Hit&Run and countless other “cosmopolitan libertarians” keep throwing out there.

    You make it sound like we’re looking for a competent manager. We are not.

    We want someone who will not manage the country. We want someone who will spend the next four years vetoing unconstitutional bills and using the bully pulpit to sell the ideas of limited government to an ignorant populace.

  • http://www.belowthebeltway.com Doug Mataconis

    Brian,

    Who Ron Paul associates with and how he manages his affairs is directly relevant to whether or not he would be a good President.

    It’s also relevant because we still don’t know who he’d appoint to the Cabinet and various advisory positions.

    Someone who was irresponsible enough to lend their name to a publication without keeping at least a casual eye on what was published would arguably have questionable judgment in making the decisions a President, even a limited government President, needs to make.

  • http://dangerouslyidealistic.blogspot.com/ UCrawford

    Brian,

    We want someone who will not manage the country. We want someone who will spend the next four years vetoing unconstitutional bills and using the bully pulpit to sell the ideas of limited government to an ignorant populace.

    I want somebody who will end the war in Iraq by withdrawing our troops in a fashion that won’t have the country blow up on them while we’re leaving and get a lot of them killed.

    I want somebody who will phase out the different Cabinets but not do so in such a way to strip of of the benefits those agencies provide while still strapping us with the liabilities.

    I want somebody who will have the capability of negotiating non-entangling treaties with other nations, because despite the fact I’m a non-interventionist I’m damn sure no isolationist and I recognize that America has a place in this world and that occasionally alliances or cooperation with other countries will require our government to intervene and plead a convincing case.

    Basically I want less government but I don’t want a president who appoints incompetents to Cabinet posts that will wreck the country getting us there…especially in the middle of a war (regardless of what your opinion of that war is) and I want someone who will be able to get these ideals implemented by convincing the people to buy in. And it’s tough to get other people to buy in when you’d rather sit on your bully pulpit instead of work with the “ignorant populace” to understand their concerns and get their input. What you’re looking for is a cult leader, not a president, and it never turns out well when you give cult leaders power…even if they have the best of intentions.

  • http://thelibertypapers.org/2005/11/22/a-bit-about-kevin/ Kevin

    I can’t help but wonder what is the relevance of the “incompetent manager” jab that UCrawford, Doug, Reason’s Hit&Run and countless other “cosmopolitan libertarians” keep throwing out there.

    Because I’m tired of presidents picking people who do a “heck of a job” for even the limited things governments are supposed to do.

  • http://dangerouslyidealistic.blogspot.com/ UCrawford

    Michael Costello,

    Way to lose some respect, and show true colors with your revealingly dismissive and mocking choice to use the term “Paulestinian” in commentary elsewhere,

    We make a distinction between Ron Paul supporters willing to discuss the issues and their policy disagreements with us rationally and those who are just bitter-enders with no ideals beyond their slavish devotion to one man and the persecution complex they all trumpet. Paulestinians is the term we use because Paulestinians fits.

    I hope you come to reconsider your position with respect to Ron Paul

    If he changes his position on immigration and disassociates himself from the racists and conspiracy theorists I’ll consider it.

    This sort of thing Coming from echo chamber Statists like Red State and full on binary political left wingers like Wonkette was something I could see coming, but from people who are supposedly on the side of the cause of liberty, well, it gives me pause, I feel a bit betrayed.

    Please correct me if I’m wrong, but weren’t those all sites that barred you guys to varying degrees because you offered so little in the way of useful discussion? Frankly, before you start bitching about how “betrayed” you feel by sites like ours I think you should be glad that someone is still willing to let you post on their private sites and express your opinions, even if it does result in mockery. Practicing freedom of speech does not in any way, shape or form indicate that all ideas have equal validity…or that we’re required to treat them all with equal respect. If you’re unhappy with that, perhaps you should consider tailoring the manner in which you deliver your messages or making them more coherent and linear so you aren’t immediately dismissed as a rambling loon.

  • http://publiusendures.blogspot.com Mark

    Speaking of Paulestinians, check this post out:
    http://unqualified-reservations.blogspot.com/2008/01/questions-for-arnold-kling-megan.html

    The guy called out all of the “Beltway libertarians” who were attacking Ron Paul. Even though I was not specifically named, I figured I would comment to show that contrary to his implication, there are plenty of bloggers from outside the Beltway who have dropped Paul because of the newsletters.

    Anyways, you’ll see Will Wilkinson’s various responses, and the responses of about a dozen pro-Paul people. What you won’t see, though, is my response, which simply answered the question Wilkinson didn’t and supplemented a couple of Wilkinson’s other answers. I avoided any invective or anything like that; the point I was making was just that racism as a government policy is every bit as bad as socialism, and in many ways is really just a form of socialism. A racist individual is also worse than a socialist individual since a racist can do harm just with a torch and a white hood, whereas an individual socialist actually needs the coercive support of the state to do harm.

    In any event, the point is that the guy didn’t want any dissenting opinions other than Wilkinson’s.

  • UCrawford

    Mark,

    (sigh) Typical. But of course it makes me feel less bad about making fun of the crazy ones who show up here and spout random phrases that even a top psychologist probably couldn’t delve through..

    Wait, what am I saying? I never felt bad about it in the first place :)

  • UCrawford

    Oh well…every once in awhile there’s one out there who can be talked to and reasoned with and that’s usually reason enough to engage them I suppose.