Dave on Ron Paul

Races for the Senate, U.S. House, etc. and other issues of national importance.
ArturoBandini
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Re: Dave on Ron Paul

Postby ArturoBandini » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:01 pm

kurt, I don't agree with Paul's position on abortion, so relax. I'm just trying to clarify what his position is. I'm not a one-issue voter (or vote-againster), so a politician could be wrong on abortion or divisive major issue and still get my vote.
Ron Paul would presumably like to see abortion banned in all 50 states; he just has an ideology that prefers to see it done at the state level rather than the federal level. That's not "small government", it's just shifting the "bigness" from one unit of government to another.
Are states not smaller governments than the federal government? I'll concede that it may be impossible to define what absolute "smallness" really means, but in a relative sense, states are smaller than the nation. Libertarianism and Small/Limited Government(ism) are two overlapping but distinct sets of ideas. Ron Paul takes some positions from both.

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Re: Dave on Ron Paul

Postby ArturoBandini » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:03 pm

Henry Vilas wrote:It certainly would be a problem for black Americans if Southern states could reinstitute Jim Crow.
On a scale of 1 to 10, how likely do you think that would be, were states given the authority to do so? I'm just trying to gauge your level of paranoid delusion here.

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Re: Dave on Ron Paul

Postby kurt_w » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:04 pm

Crockett wrote:
kurt_w wrote:The mainstream GOP position seems to be small government, except for abortions and drugs and marriage and defense spending and corporate welfare and ... er, basically, whatever else they want to have government meddling in. Then, big government is good.


Ding, ding, ding, ding...we have a winner!

For the record, Ron Paul is not a mainstream Republican.


I guess I'd say that Ron Paul has one foot in the Republican mainstream, and one foot outside it. Romney used to be standing on the bank, but then he dove in and now he's over his head and a couple of miles downstream.

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Re: Dave on Ron Paul

Postby Henry Vilas » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:05 pm

Ever hear of restrictive Voter ID laws? The U.S. Justice Department has already stepped in to halt the South Carolina and Texas attempts to suppress minority voting.

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Re: Dave on Ron Paul

Postby ArturoBandini » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:08 pm

Henry Vilas wrote:Ever hear of restrictive Voter ID laws? The U.S. Justice Department has already stepped in to halt the South Carolina and Texas attempts to suppress minority voting.

I think the point is to stop Democratic voting, not specifically voting by racial minorities (because they are racial minorities).

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Re: Dave on Ron Paul

Postby kurt_w » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:19 pm

ArturoBandini wrote:kurt, I don't agree with Paul's position on abortion, so relax. I'm just trying to clarify what his position is. I'm not a one-issue voter (or vote-againster), so a politician could be wrong on abortion or divisive major issue and still get my vote.


I'm not particularly un-relaxed, and I'm not trying to change your opinion. I posted those quotes mainly because I've gotten the impression that a lot of other people (e.g., those who might be drawn towards Ron Paul's views on other social issues, war, etc.) often don't realize how radical his anti-abortion views are.

I also agree with you that single-issue voting is undesirable. I'm not a single-issue voter either.

Ron Paul would presumably like to see abortion banned in all 50 states; he just has an ideology that prefers to see it done at the state level rather than the federal level. That's not "small government", it's just shifting the "bigness" from one unit of government to another.
Are states not smaller governments than the federal government? I'll concede that it may be impossible to define what absolute "smallness" really means, but in a relative sense, states are smaller than the nation. Libertarianism and Small/Limited Government(ism) are two overlapping but distinct sets of ideas. Ron Paul takes some positions from both.


States are obviously physically smaller, but all that means is that more people will happen to live outside of them. IMHO, a big-government policy is still a big-government policy regardless of what level it's implemented at.

Before the Civil War, individual state governments could -- and did -- interfere with freedom of speech, freedom of the mails, etc. For example, southern states passed laws against the distribution of abolitionist literature in the mails. Is that less offensive than the identical law passed by the national government? Not to me it isn't.

Sometimes states and towns might act to protect individual liberty from encroachment by the federal government. Other times, the federal government prevents states and municipalities from trampling on individual rights.

In the case of abortion, from a pro-choice perspective, the federal government (courts, mostly) currently protects individual liberty from a substantial number of state governments that are doing everything in their power to erode that liberty. Ron Paul wants to reduce the federal government's ability to protect individual liberty (on abortion), and to free the state governments to radically curtail the rights of individuals. The net effect would be a quantum increase in the intrusiveness of government.

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Re: Dave on Ron Paul

Postby kurt_w » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:31 pm

Here's an interesting philosophical question for you, Arturo.

Prior to the adoption of the 14th Amendment, the US Bill of Rights was considered to only apply to the federal government, not to state governments.

Would you say that extending the Bill of Rights to cover the actions of state governments was an expansion of government power, or a limitation of government power?

Just curious.

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Re: Dave on Ron Paul

Postby ArturoBandini » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:36 pm

kurt_w wrote:Here's an interesting philosophical question for you, Arturo.

Prior to the adoption of the 14th Amendment, the US Bill of Rights was considered to only apply to the federal government, not to state governments.

Would you say that extending the Bill of Rights to cover the actions of state governments was an expansion of government power, or a limitation of government power?

Just curious.
It's both. It's an expansion of power of the federal government over the state governments and a reduction of overall government power over individuals. On net, I would call it a reduction of government power, and I support the 14th amendment.

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Re: Dave on Ron Paul

Postby kurt_w » Tue Apr 03, 2012 12:53 pm

ArturoBandini wrote:
kurt_w wrote:Here's an interesting philosophical question for you, Arturo.

Prior to the adoption of the 14th Amendment, the US Bill of Rights was considered to only apply to the federal government, not to state governments.

Would you say that extending the Bill of Rights to cover the actions of state governments was an expansion of government power, or a limitation of government power?

Just curious.
It's both. It's an expansion of power of the federal government over the state governments and a reduction of overall government power over individuals. On net, I would call it a reduction of government power, and I support the 14th amendment.

I would agree. I believe the Ron Paul/abortion issue is similar. Roe v. Wade was "an expansion of power of the federal government over the state governments and a reduction of overall government power over individuals". Ron Paul would like to reverse that.

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Re: Dave on Ron Paul

Postby ArturoBandini » Tue Apr 03, 2012 1:14 pm

kurt_w wrote:I would agree. I believe the Ron Paul/abortion issue is similar. Roe v. Wade was "an expansion of power of the federal government over the state governments and a reduction of overall government power over individuals". Ron Paul would like to reverse that.
OK, but it should be recognized that the divide is somewhat deeper than you're making it seem. Ron Paul wants to ban abortion not because, just in this instance, he inconsistently favors a policy that violates freedom of choice, but because he believes that a fetus is an individual deserving of freedom of choice just like anyone else. In his worldview, he is being entirely consistent in his favorability toward protecting individual rights to life and liberty.

I disagree with his policy prescription (to ban abortion at whatever level) for pragmatic reasons, but there are other issues at play here that have little to do with abortion and I think they are, in sum, more important. You could argue that abortion for Paul is merely a proxy battle that belies his secret desire to control every facet of your life and make sure you aren't having premarital, interracial or gay sex, but almost every other plank of his platform suggests that this is not the case. There is a philosophical difference at a deeper level that leads to this seeming inconsistency at the surface.

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Re: Dave on Ron Paul

Postby Henry Vilas » Tue Apr 03, 2012 1:19 pm

ArturoBandini wrote:
Henry Vilas wrote:Ever hear of restrictive Voter ID laws? The U.S. Justice Department has already stepped in to halt the South Carolina and Texas attempts to suppress minority voting.

I think the point is to stop Democratic voting, not specifically voting by racial minorities (because they are racial minorities).

That's not what the Justice Department said when they invoked the Voter Rights Act.

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Re: Dave on Ron Paul

Postby Prof. Wagstaff » Tue Apr 03, 2012 1:20 pm

ArturoBandini wrote:Ron Paul... believes that a fetus is an individual deserving of freedom of choice just like anyone else.
Then I assume (and it is just that -- an assumption -- please correct me if I'm wrong) that Ron Paul also believes that 10 year-olds should be able to drink in bars, 6 year-olds should be able to vote, 3 year-olds should be eligible for election to Congress, 14 year-olds should be able to join the military, and 7 year-olds should be able to get a driver's license? Or does "freedom of choice" (a strange term to apply to a fetus) only apply to whether or not you want to continue living?

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Re: Dave on Ron Paul

Postby ArturoBandini » Tue Apr 03, 2012 1:34 pm

Prof. Wagstaff wrote:Then I assume (and it is just that -- an assumption -- please correct me if I'm wrong) that Ron Paul also believes that 10 year-olds should be able to drink in bars, 6 year-olds should be able to vote, 3 year-olds should be eligible for election to Congress, 14 year-olds should be able to join the military, and 7 year-olds should be able to get a driver's license? Or does "freedom of choice" (a strange term to apply to a fetus) only apply to whether or not you want to continue living?
Your assumptions are made in jest, correct? In each of these cases, there are other underlying issues that don't make these cases clear distinctions of individual rights versus government authority. For instance, regarding the voting age - voting and individual liberty are two perpendicular concepts. Democracy or voting, (hypothetically speaking) can foster liberal open societies or punishingly illiberal ones. You can argue that in some cases, the act of voting to impose government power on others is itself a violation of individual rights, since one might be voting to restrict the rights of others (say, a referendum on the reinstatement of Jim Crow).

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Re: Dave on Ron Paul

Postby kurt_w » Tue Apr 03, 2012 1:46 pm

ArturoBandini wrote:
kurt_w wrote:I would agree. I believe the Ron Paul/abortion issue is similar. Roe v. Wade was "an expansion of power of the federal government over the state governments and a reduction of overall government power over individuals". Ron Paul would like to reverse that.
OK, but it should be recognized that the divide is somewhat deeper than you're making it seem. Ron Paul wants to ban abortion not because, just in this instance, he inconsistently favors a policy that violates freedom of choice, but because he believes that a fetus is an individual deserving of freedom of choice just like anyone else. In his worldview, he is being entirely consistent in his favorability toward protecting individual rights to life and liberty.

I disagree with his policy prescription (to ban abortion at whatever level) for pragmatic reasons, but there are other issues at play here that have little to do with abortion and I think they are, in sum, more important. You could argue that abortion for Paul is merely a proxy battle that belies his secret desire to control every facet of your life and make sure you aren't having premarital, interracial or gay sex, but almost every other plank of his platform suggests that this is not the case. There is a philosophical difference at a deeper level that leads to this seeming inconsistency at the surface.


Yes, once again you persist in saying this reasonable stuff that I can't really disagree with. I'm not suggesting that Ron Paul's position on abortion is due to a secret desire to expand government; I think he genuinely believes that abortion is such a violation of the fetus's rights that government has to regulate it, and for philosophical reasons he'd prefer to have that done by the states.

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Re: Dave on Ron Paul

Postby Prof. Wagstaff » Tue Apr 03, 2012 1:49 pm

ArturoBandini wrote:Your assumptions are made in jest, correct?
How are my scenarios any more ridiculous than giving a fetus "freedom of choice"?
ArturoBandini wrote: In each of these cases, there are other underlying issues that don't make these cases clear distinctions of individual rights versus government authority.

Huh? Sorry, but I didn't follow your response.
No, that's not true. I followed it.
I just fail to see how it addresses my questions.

I'm not asking about your positions, Arturo.
I was assuming that anyone who thinks fetuses should have "freedom of choice" -- in this case, Ron Paul -- would naturally also grant such freedom to anyone of any other age. If a fetus is a full-fledged person with full-fledged rights, then so's a 7-year-old and a 14-year-old, right? What is the "underlying issue" keeping a young adult from serving in Congress except that the government has unilaterally declared that they may not? Ditto voting or driving. I am entirely unclear how your response addresses these questions.


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