Letter to the Republican Jewish Coalition on Ron Paul
by Walter Block: Response
to Alexander McCobin
Jewish Coalition bars
Ron Paul from their Presidential Debate, saying he is too "misguided
to the website of the RJC, "seven
of the top Republican presidential candidates (will) gather next
week at a forum hosted by the Republican Jewish Coalition."
They do not condescend to name Ron Paul as the one top candidate
who will be shunned by this group, but their spokesman elsewhere
makes this clear: "He's just so far outside of the mainstream
of the Republican party and this organization," Brooks said.
Inviting Paul to attend would be "like inviting Barack Obama to
of the Republican party mainstream? No, not at all. Rather, Congressman
Paulís seven competitors, all invited by the RJC, are the ones outside
of the Republican mainstream, at least if this includes people like
Robert Taft and Howard Buffett; see on this here,
Taft: "It follows that except as such policies may ultimately protect
our own security, we have no primary interest as a national policy
to improve conditions or material welfare in other parts of the
world or to change other forms of government. Certainly we should
not engage in war to achieve such purposes." No, it is not
Ron Paul who is out of step with (at least this kind of) Republicanism.
It is, rather, the seven dwarfs (Romney, Gingrich, Cain, Bachmann,
Perry, Huntsman and Santorum) who are marching to a non Republican
drummer (actually, a neo-con drummer, comprised mainly of ex-commies,
Trotskyites and Democrats).
Is Dr. Paul
"far outside of the mainstream of Ö this organization?"
Well, that depends upon what are the goals of the RJC. Here
is its mission statement: "We seek to foster and enhance ties
between the American Jewish community and Republican decision makers.
We work to sensitize Republican leadership in government and the
party to the concerns and issues of the Jewish community, while
articulating and advocating Republican ideas and policies within
the Jewish community. We are committed to building a strong, effective
and respected Jewish Republican voice in Washington and across the
country." And here
is its position on Israel: "We fully embrace a pro-Israel foreign
policy. The RJC is a Jewish organization; we recognize and support
the importance of Israel as a Jewish state to Jews and non-Jews
worldwide. As the only democracy in the Middle East, Israel shares
our values and is a bulwark against the forces of repression and
anti-human rights regimes. It is our obligation to ally with other
nations who share our fundamental values there are few enough
of them especially those who are willing to stand up and
fight for those values. Israel is our only ally that has never asked
for American blood to be shed in her defense. " I could not
find anything on their website discussing anti-Semitism, but I think
I may take it as a given that the RJC opposes this scourge.
repeat, is Dr. Paul "far outside of the mainstream of Ö this
(RJC) organization?" I think not. Congressman Paul, a U.S.
air force veteran, the only non chicken-hawk of the group of seven
(apart from Perry), "fully embrace(s) a pro-Israel foreign
policy." Is it the same policy as that of the other
contenders for the Republican nomination? Of course not; otherwise,
he, too, would have been welcomed by the RJC to their "debate."
But it is a different "pro-Israel foreign policy."
For one thing,
Ron Paul espouses a policy of ending all U.S. transfers of funds
to foreign nations; since the Arab countries, all together, receive
far more than does Israel, although this "hurts" (read
Peter T. Bauer for an explanation of these scare quotes) Israel
absolutely, it helps that country relative to its
enemies. Jews are supposed to have great intelligence, and they
do. But sufficient to grasp this admittedly complicated point (Iím
kidding, here)? Evidently, not enough of this intellectual ability
has percolated down into the membership and leadership of the RJC.
I wonder; given their obtuseness, are they real Jews? Surely, Israelís
absolute power to impose its will is as nothing compared to its
power relative to that of its enemies.
thing, the Representative of the 14th congressional district
of Texas favors Israeli sovereignty, unlike the other candidates
for the Republican nomination for president, and, presumably, the
RJC. This means that Ron Paul trusts the population and leadership
of Israel to defend itself more than he trusts the population and
leadership of the U.S. for this vital task. Under a Paul Administration,
Israel will no longer have to ask U.S. permission before it sneezes.
More to the point, before it erects buildings wherever it wants
to, before it bombs installations it deems hazardous to its national
health, before it negotiates with bordering peoples (e.g., Obamaís
claim that the 1967 borders must serve as a jumping off point for
any subsequent treaty between Israel and its neighbors.) Had a non-interventionist
of the Paul stripe been in charge of U.S. policy in the 1950s, the
land of Greater Israel would now include the entire Sinai Penninsula.
But what about
Iran? Ron Paul alone of the all the candidates for the Republican
nomination, has seen all this before, with Iraq. The neo-cons whipped
up public sentiment for that disaster, and are now attempting to
satisfy their blood lust yet again. How many countries has Iran
actually invaded in the last epoch? None, that is how many. They
want to kill every Jew in Israel? Why, then, have they not started
with the Jewish community of Tehran? Is bombing innocent men, women
and children in Iran really the best way to safeguard Israel? Or
will poking yet more sticks into more hornetís nests only achieve
blowback against Israel and the U.S. as well? The U.S. and the Soviet
Union endured several decades of Mutual Assured Destruction. Would
it not be better for the Israelis to go through a MAD period like
this with Iran, when and if the latter gets a nuclear device? Are
these ideas, for goodness sakes, not even worth discussing?
Is Ron Paul
an anti-Semite? To even ask this question is to insult this good
man. I am of a Jewish background and I have known Dr. Paul for more
decades than either of us would be happy to admit. I have had numerous
discussions with him, I have broken bread with him on more than
a few occasions, and have attended many conferences with him. I
tell you, my "nose" for this sort of thing is as a good
as any other Jewís, and never have I encountered even the slightest
whiff of anything of this sort in my long association with Ron.
My friends Murray Sabrin and David Gordon have had similar experiences
with this member of the House of Representatives, and fully share
my assessment. There could hardly be an organization
Jews for Ron Paul
were there any scintilla of doubt about Dr. Paul on this matter.
Want some more evidence? The two economists who are the favorites
of the next president of the U.S. are the Jewish intellectuals Murray
N. Rothbard and Ludwig von Mises. Ron Paul never tires of citing
them when he discusses not only economic subjects such as money,
the business cycle, unemployment, Austrian economics, but also,
ethics, liberty, freedom. These two are his greatest intellectual
and moral influences. Can anyone imagine a real anti-Semite befriending
the likes of me, Gordon and Sabrin, welcoming an organization of
Jews dedicated to supporting him, and mentioning two prominent Jews
as his prime mentors? (I have written about these issues on many
occasions; for further elaboration, see here,
But, let us
assume, arguendo, that it is indeed true that, as charged, Ron Paul
is wildly outside of the mainstream of the Republican party, and,
perhaps even more important, holds views that counter by 180 degrees
those of the RJC. (In case any members of the RJC do not understand
the concept of "arguendo," this does not mean I stipulate
these points to be true. As a matter of fact, I sharply disagree
with them, see links above. Arguendo means, "for the sake of
argument." So, I am now assuming the RJC charges against
Dr. Paul to be true.) Does it even then logically follow that you
the RJC are wise or even justified in excluding him from your debate?
It does not.
Here are several
reasons. Given that the goal of the RJC is to reduce the chances
of Ron Paul becoming the next president of the U.S., the last
thing it needs is for him to garner more publicity. But its decision
to exclude him has already given him an additional and gargantuan
amount of press coverage. Thanks to the RJC, more precious ink and
electronic time will be given to this man than had he been invited.
(Hey, he could have been limited to 89 seconds; there is precedent
for that sort of thing. No, maybe, give him two or three minutes;
that attempt to shut him up didnít really work.) And not only that.
Ron is now an underdog, as a non invitee. People root for underdogs.
It wouldnít surprise me in the least if more people voted for him
than otherwise would have been the case for this reason alone. If
the goal is to squelch him, it has already backfired. Is there a
renegade cabal of Ron Paul supporters deep within the bowels of
the RJC who concocted this exclusion idea so as to promote
his candidacy? Naw; couldnít be. Conspiracy theories, by definition,
must all be wrong. (Iím kidding about this too.)
In chess, every
time you make a move, youíre supposed to ask yourself, "If
I do this, what will my opponent do in response?" Well, how
will the Paul campaign react to this insult? Take it lying down?
Not bloody likely. Dr. Paul might schedule a press conference, where
he gives a major speech on how his policies will actually help
Israel, and thus demonstrate that he is the very opposite of an
anti-Semite. He might schedule this event right before or after,
maybe even during your phony "debate." Very likely,
the contrast between his creative ideas for the protection of Israel
and the tired old shopworn bumper sticker "thoughts" of
the other seven (letís throw more money at Israel, letís bomb Iran
back to the stone-age) will draw attention away from your event
and toward his.
is the issue of anti Semitism. Have you people lost your minds?
Do you not realize that there are real anti-Semites out there,
just looking for an excuse in support of their views? Why strengthen
them, for goodness sake? They will use this as yet another
bit of "evidence" demonstrating the perfidy and unfairness
of our co-religionists.
suppose, hey, for argumentís sake, arguendo (if you have forgotten
what that means, look it up) that Ron Paul becomes the next president
of the United States. (Mathematically, the odds of this occurring
are one in sixteen, or 6 percent: there are 8 Republican candidates;
let us award each of them a 12% chance; then, take half of that,
given that the Democrat candidate also has a 50% shot at winning.
Of course, if Ron Paul loses the Republican nomination and runs
as an Independent or on the Libertarian Party ticket, and New York
City Mayor Bloomberg also launches a foray, then Paulís chances
rise to 25%). Do you really want it on record that an important
part of the Jewish community gave a gratuitous slap in the face
to the man who will lead the country for four years?
We Jews are
supposed to be people of the book. This means, if it means anything,
that we are supposed to be open to ideas. Your decision to
exclude Paul is a disgrace to this precious tradition. It is a shonda
for the goyim.
The RJC of
course has a right to invite anyone it wants to its functions.
This is not censorship; that only occurs when the government prevents
free speech. But, it is unwise, unfair, unjust and immoral. It trashes
our reputation for lighting a light to the nations. So, I implore
you, in the name of Judaism, safety for Israel, protecting our community
against anti-Semitism; reconsider. It is not too late. Ron Paul
is gentleman enough, I think, to accept an invitation from you,
even a belated one.
Block [send him mail] is a
professor of economics at Loyola University New Orleans, and a senior
fellow of the Ludwig von Mises Institute. He is the author of Defending
the Undefendable and Labor
Economics From A Free Market Perspective. His latest book
Privatization of Roads and Highways.
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