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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Congress shall make no law

Posted by: Hammer / 8:52 AM

This is a good example of what's wrong with political coverage. It's the Star Tribune profiling Ron Paul supporters:

David Fischer has run a three-person research firm in Des Moines since 1993. When he started his firm, he had to pay state and federal unemployment insurance and fill out lengthy forms.

Eventually, his obligation to provide payments to the state stopped, because no one at his firm was laid off, "yet I have to file reports every quarter, and I keep getting mail from the government," Fischer said.

"This is a small example of what's wrong with government. There's too much regulation," he added. "I can't even put a Ron Paul sign in my yard without making sure I've complied with all kinds of city and county ordinances going on for hundreds of pages."

This is patently false, yet the Strib prints it. Why? When the Strib puts this dreck into print without comment, it makes Fischer's statement seem credible.

In fact, there is one regulation going on for one sentence governing this issue:

Congress shall make no law regarding an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press...

So, no, if Fischer wants to put up a regular old yard sign, he certainly can, and no government in the United States can stop him. Now, if Fischer lives in a planned community of some sort, then the private market can certainly put all kinds of restrictions on what he can and cannot put up in his yard. It's the tyranny of the marketplace. If Fischer doesn't like that, he can move or stop supporting Ron Paul.

Alternatively, if Fischer wants to put up a 20 foot high sign in a residential area, local governments certainly might object to that. But Fischer is complaining about a problem that doesn't exist. If your best reason for voting for a candidate is a complaint based on a fundamental misunderstanding of how the world actually works, I suppose that's fine for you -- but a newspaper certainly shouldn't print it as fact.

Added by Jambo:

Yeah, we need to get the government off our backs.



The yard sign commment isn't his only reason for supporting Ron Paul. His complaint and reason for supporting Ron Paul was that he owns a small business and if forced to comply with a bunch of federal unemployment laws that require him to fill out a bunch of paper work even though he hasn't fired anyone.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:03 AM  

He had to fill out some paperwork? To the barricades boys! Don't fire until you see the whites of their eyes!

By Blogger Jambo, at 10:24 AM  

I would expect you guys to be sympathetic to Ron Paul. I hear some hints of a libertarian worldview in your posts.

For my part, I hate Ron Paul supporters. I hate the way they use the internet. It makes me angry for some primal reason that I haven't yet figured out. But seriously, Ron Paul supporters and their fucking revolution can suck my dick.

That felt good.


By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:01 PM  

I'd call myself a liberal Democrat with (small "L") libertarian leanings. Paul certainly has some views that I like but he also has a ton that are ridiculous, like his beef about fiat money and a return to the gold standard. Personally I get pissed off by (big "L") Libertarians who bitch about getting government off their backs while putting their money in federally insured banks which they drive to on state built roads protected by municipally employed police and fire departments. Generally they have attended public schools and gone to state colleges paid for with state and federal grants and loans. I think the government should stay out of people's private lives; marriage, sex, even drugs to a certain extent. But business and economics is not personal, it's public. At least mostly.

By Blogger Jambo, at 9:59 PM  

I respect the fact that Ron Paul is principled in his beliefs. That said, his world view is starkly wrong. We've tried the utopia he envisions -- it was an unmitigated disaster.

Government can always be improved. In fact, I'd say the normal state of any government is a bureaucratic mess. It takes real effort by people committed to good government to allow government to function well.

Ron Paul is not one committed to good government.

By Blogger Hammer, at 9:14 AM  

"We've tried the utopia he envisions -- it was an unmitigated disaster."

Who tried that? Do you mean you and your friends?

I think what bothers me so much about Ron Paul supporters is it all seems false and manipulated. I browse on occasion and there is this screechy artifice to all their posts.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:31 PM  

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