Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Ron Paul party

Taken from:  http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/the-ron-paul-party-421/2012/01/10/gIQAqr4CnP_video.html#

The Ron Paul party

Preliminary polls have not shown that Ron Paul is in first place to win the New Hampshire primary but you wouldn’t know that from looking at his supporters. Compared to other candidates’ contingents, Paul supporters are often the most vocal, the most visible and the most flamboyant. And many of them used to call themselves democrats, or still do. (Whitney Shefte)


Taken from: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/jan/9/pauls-campaign-finds-big-gender-gap-to-bridge/?page=all#pagebreak

Paul’s campaign finds big gender gap to bridge

By Stephen Dinan

The Washington Times

Monday, January 9, 2012

FINAL HOURS: One day before the first presidential primary, Republican Rep. Ron Paul of Texas visits MoeJoe’s Family Restaurant in Manchester, N.H. (Rod Lamkey Jr./The Washington Times)

 Ron Paul’s been playing to big crowds in Iowa and New Hampshire, but there’s something striking about them — there are usually way more men than women at his events.

That gender gap was evident in the voting in Iowa, too, where entrance polls before the caucuses showed he won a larger percentage of the male vote than the female vote. The gap is persisting into New Hampshire, where The Washington Times/JZ Analytics poll released last week found a 12 percentage point difference between his support from men and women.

Following Iowa’s voting, his supporters took note.

“Huge gender gap! We are not getting women voters!” read the headline on an active discussion on DailyPaul.com, an independent website that has become a must-read forum for his supporters.

The topic drew more than 300 replies, making it one of the most popular issues on the site over the past week. Explanations included Mr. Paul’s pro-life stance on abortion and remarks that women do not value liberty as much as men and that female voters do not find Mr. Paul as physically attractive as other candidates.

Susan J. Carroll, senior scholar at the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University, said the explanation is probably no more complex than Mr. Paul’s limited-government views. She said those can alienate women who are more likely than men to be care providers, and who count on government assistance in those roles.

“The one thing that does divide women and men in the general electorate is their views on the role of government, with men being much more likely to want to cut back on government than women are,” she said.

Polls suggest Mr. Paul is positioned for a second-place finish in New Hampshire on Tuesday, following his third-place showing in Iowa. Next up is South Carolina and then Florida, where all of the candidates will have to quickly broaden their appeal by way of television ads and mass communication, rather than the town-hall meetings and personal contact that prevail in Iowa and New Hampshire.

The Paul campaign did not respond to a request for comment for this article.

The gender gap has been evident in general elections since 1980, with women favoring Democrats and men favoring Republicans. But it is not as common in primaries, where voters are cut from more ideologically uniform cloth and are choosing candidates based on electability or how well they conform to orthodoxy.

This year, though, the numbers showing a striking gap for Mr. Paul.

The entrance poll taken by the Associated Press and the major broadcast networks of those walking into Iowa’s caucuses last week found him getting support of 24 percent of male voters — most of any of the candidates — but just 19 percent of female voters, for a gender gap of 5 points.

New Hampshire is shaping up to be even more stark. The Times/JZ Analytics poll taken Wednesday, the day after Iowa’s caucuses, found a 12 percentage point gap between Mr. Paul’s share of male likely voters and his share of female supporters.

The gap between his married and single supporters is more pronounced. He was winning support of nearly half of all single voters in the New Hampshire survey, but from just 17 percent of married voters.

On the DailyPaul forum, his supporters viewed the matter chiefly not as a comment on how well he was doing with men, but on how poorly he was doing with women. They debated whether it was a matter of his stance on the issues or the packaging of his message.

“I think women are more susceptible to MSM’s signals that Ron Paul is out in the cold, not a part of the establishment community. It’s certainly easier for a man than for a woman to fight a battle on his own,” wrote one commenter who went by “Plop.”

Another poster said a women-for-Paul website is in the works.

Asked by The Times about the gap, Paul supporters who came to see their candidate campaign in New Hampshire last week pondered the question.

“They’re wives, trying to take care of the family and kids. Maybe they are more about, you know, they want the health benefits, they want things from the government to take care of the family. I don’t know,” said Ryan Amidon, 35, from Garner, Mass., who drove to see Mr. Paul campaign at MoeJoe’s Family Restaurant in Manchester.

“It is kind of weird,” he said. “I noticed the same thing. Maybe it’s the gun-rights thing, Second Amendment. More guys have guns. It’s kind of odd, though.”

Stephen Gilmore, 24, who saw Mr. Paul in Nashua, guessed Mr. Paul’s pro-life stance is off-putting to women. His girlfriend, Melissa Parsons, 21, agreed. “That’s probably a big part of it,” she said.

But Jennifer L. Lawless, director of the Women & Politics Institute at American University, said the abortion explanation probably doesn’t explain Mr. Paul’s support because all of the candidates in the primary hold pro-life views, and they are working to attract Republican primary voters.

She said it seems Mr. Paul’s message is targeted at men, and in particular young men, who are likely to be attracted to his fiscal conservative message.

“Especially in a state like New Hampshire where you’ve got fiscal conservatives who are not necessarily social conservatives, there’s a nice well to be primed there,” she said.

Some candidates have made overt appeals. Newt Gingrich held a forum with women before the caucuses, sponsored by CafeMom.com and moderated by Republican pollster Frank Luntz, where he answered female voters’ questions.

At one point, asked about his mother, Mr. Gingrich began to weep.

Online, Mr. Paul’s supporters debated ways to try to narrow the gap. Some suggested having Mr. Paul bring his wife and grandchildren on the campaign circuit — something he has done more often in recent weeks. Others wanted Mr. Paul to highlight his previous career as an obstetrician, or to talk about his desire to curtail the war in Afghanistan.

Others pondered how they could broaden their own appeals when spreading the gospel of Mr. Paul.

Mr. Paul does have one high-profile female supporter — singer Kelly Clarkson, an early winner of Fox’s “American Idol” contest, who said on Twitter that “Ron Paul is about letting people decide, not the government. I am for this.”

• Seth McLaughlin and Dave Boyer, reporting from New Hampshire, contributed to this report.

© Copyright 2012 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

Ron Paul holds a standing room only town hall event at Church Landing at Mills Falls in Meredith, NH on January 8th, 2012.

Original song "Green Valley" used by permission from Andrew Shewell.
You can find the song here:

Filmed and edited by Ron Paul Films © Embedding and linking of this video is permitted. Please do not copy directly or upload.

Ron Paul On Fox's Off The Record: "I'm in this, I'm a contender!"—"You're a rockstar!"

Taken from:  http://www.concordmonitor.com/article/303840/paul-makes-sense

Paul makes sense

Andrea Graham-Melville, Concord

Ron Paul scares people. He embraces the radical ideas that we should pay our debts and mind our own business. His non-interventionist foreign policy is the same one advocated by George Washington - and foreign policy experts are actually agreeing with him now.
Democrats who voted for President Obama because he promised to end the wars are voting this year for Paul, who really will. His popularity continues to grow steadily, even in the face of false racism accusations and fake videos. He even has people in other countries supporting him because they know he will change the USA's reputation from international bully to good neighbor.

People are tired of voting for the lesser of two evils, especially when the difference is minimal. It's time for a good candidate, one who will defend our liberties and balance the budget. If Paul doesn't win the GOP nomination, it doesn't matter if he runs third-party or not; thousands of his supporters are planning to write him in anyway, splitting the Republican vote. The only way to get Obama out of office is to vote for Paul.

Most important, he has had more money donated to him from active U.S. military personnel than Obama has - and more than all the other Republican candidates put together! The majority of our active military personnel support Paul, and they put their money where their mouth is. If you say you support our troops, why not start supporting the candidate who the troops themselves support?


Ron Paul - Predictions in Due Time

This is Ron Paul's famous Predictions speech from April 24, 2002. This is the original video compiling recent images and video to give his speech a chilling effect.

"I have no timetable for these predictions, but just in case, keep them around and look at them in 5-10 years. Let's hope and pray that I'm wrong on all accounts.

If so, I will be very pleased. " Ron Paul

I have my own prediction here:

If the American people don't vote Ron Paul into the presidency in 2012

You, the American People, will regret it until your dieing day!!!

And so will your children, their children and all future generations to come!!!!

One World! One God! One Race!
The Human Race!
Standing together to make a better world,
For All Mankind!

Love Always
Forever Peace

Ron Paul Campaign Statement on Morning Media Incident

CONCORD, N.H. – Jesse Benton, national campaign chairman for the Ron Paul campaign, released the following statement today in regards to the media incident in Manchester, NH this morning:

“Dr. Paul has been committed to meeting one on one with New Hampshire voters, and has aggressively campaigned at town halls, house parties, and meet and greets since early last spring.

“This morning, he attempted to hold an event at Moe Joe’s Diner in Manchester, to speak with patrons and supporters in the last push before the New Hampshire primary.

Unfortunately, Dr. Paul and his family were forced to leave early after over 120 members of the press created a mob-like atmosphere that was deemed to be unsafe for the candidate, Moe Joe’s customers, and reporters themselves.

“The campaign had planned to cover our normal degree of media interest, which is always ample. However, a significant increase in the press corps, largely driven by an influx of foreign journalists, exceeded all expectations.

“Mrs. Paul herself, attempting to campaign alongside her husband, was shoved aside by one reporter and told to “get out of the way.”

“While we are very welcoming of media coverage and grateful for the interest in Dr. Paul and his campaign, basic safety simply must come first. On behalf of Dr. Paul and his campaign team, I would like to apologize to customers at Moe Joe’s who may have been distressed by this incident, and extend our gratitude and apologies to the owners, who were kind enough to have us.

“We ask the press, at all upcoming events over the next day and a half, to be respectful of both Dr. Paul and of New Hampshire voters, who are entitled to examine their candidates in a safe and responsible atmosphere.”

Coke Continues Sinking to New Lows


People think I won't allow coke in my home because I drink Pepsi.

This is not true!!

I won't allow Coke into my home because they're killing people, all in the name of making more money for their share holders!!

Don't take my word for it!

Look it up for your self, it's all true!!

I'm willing to go one step farther, If anyone can find (by someone not affiliated with the Coca-Cola
company) that say's any claim made by "killercoke.org" isn't true. I will remove everything from my blog that has anything to do with the corruption in this world caused by the Coca-Cola company!




Newsletter: Coke Continues Sinking to New Lows
January 11, 2012

1. Violent intrusion into the home of SINALTRAINAL VP Juan Carlos Galvis

In our last newsletter, we posted an email we received from SINALTRAINAL, the main union representing Coca-Cola workers in Colombia. Below is further information we received from Colombia about the attack on Juan Carlos Galvis's family. Galvis is the SINALTRAINAL vice president and a plaintiff in the 2001 human rights abuse lawsuit against Coca-Cola and its bottlers in Colombia, who told us when visiting our Campaign office in New York: "If we lose this fight against Coke, first we will lose our union, next we will lose our jobs and then we will all lose our lives!"

On November 9, 2011, an armed man and woman forced entry into the Barrancabermeja home of SINALTRAINAL Vice President Juan Carlos Galvis. His wife, Jackeline Rojas Castaneda, is a Colombian human rights defender. She is a leading member of the Popular Women's Organization (Organizacion Femenina Popular, OFP) having worked with the organization for 20 years. The intruders threatened to kill her daughter and demanded information about her husband.

Juan Carlos Galvis leafleting in front of Coke Director Barry Diller's office in New York City in 2003.

The man and woman held Castaneda and her 15-year-old daughter at gunpoint in separate rooms. They told her that they would kill her daughter if she screamed or tried to call for help. She was tied up; gagged and red paint was sprayed on her body and clothes. Red paint was sprayed on photos showing Juan Carlos Galvis and "son of a bitch" (HP perro) and (HP perra) was daubed on the walls.

The attackers repeatedly demanded information on the whereabouts of her son and her husband, who is a director of the National Trade Union of Food Workers (Sindicato Nacional de Trabajadores del Sistema Agroalimentario, SINALTRAINAL). He is also a member of the executive committee of the Santander Department branch of the Trade Union Congress (Central Unitaria de Trabajadores, CUT).

In addition to the attack, two laptops, USB sticks, mobiles and documents were taken from Castaneda's house. These contained information about Galvis's work. On 10 November, Castaneda went to report the attack at the Attorney General's Office. Her complaint was not admitted initially after staff at the Attorney General's Office claimed she had invented the attack.

Jackeline Rojas Castaneda and Juan Carlos Galvis have been subject to repeated paramilitary death threats over the last 10 years. In the last month unknown persons have tried to force their way into their house on at least two previous occasions. Both Castaneda and Galvis have received several threats, including death threats over the years.

The OFP was founded in 1972 and has been working to promote women's human rights in the Magdalena Medio region, including Barrancabermeja, Santander Department. The members of the OFP have been victims of several threats and attacks.

"The constant pressure of driving around with bodyguards waiting for the next death threat has clearly gotten to him...

" 'It is tough,' [Galvis] says. 'We are on the brink of death, but we keep surviving. We bring in new members to the union, but the company fires them. If it weren't for international solidarity, we would have been eliminated long ago. That is the truth.' "

From "The Coke Machine" by Michael Blanding.

Many women human rights defenders, including community and social leaders, continue to be threatened and killed because of their work in favor of women's rights and against violence. They are not only targeted in retaliation for their work as human rights defenders or as community and social leaders, but also in an effort to silence them when they expose abuses. Over the last few years, women human rights defenders and community leaders working with forcibly displaced communities and those campaigning for the restitution of stolen lands have also been the target of threats and killings, mainly by paramilitaries. Some of these women were also victims of sexual violence.

SINALTRAINAL is a trade union founded in 1982 to defend and promote the labor rights of workers in the food industry. Since its creation, at least 22 SINALTRAINAL members have been killed or forcibly disappeared by paramilitaries, either acting alone or operating in collusion with the security forces; dozens have been victims of attacks or have received death threats. The film, "The Coca-Cola Case," documents many of these murders and accuses Coca-Cola of complicity in those murders.

In recent years, SINALTRAINAL has been involved in a number of labor disputes, often involving large multinational companies. These disputes have often coincided with reports of threats and attacks against members of the union, mainly by members of the security forces or paramilitary groups.

More than 2,000 trade unionists have been killed and 138 have been victims of enforced disappearance in Colombia over the last two decades. In 2010, at least 51 trade unionists were killed, compared to 39 in 2007.

In the course of Colombia's long running armed conflict, human rights defenders and trade unionists have been particularly vulnerable to threats and killings. Most of these attacks are attributed to paramilitary groups, often working with multinational corporations.
2. Killer Coke Campaign joins Shut Down School of the Americas Protest

a. Report from the Shut Down SOA Protest

For the third year in a row, organizers with the Campaign to Stop Killer Coke, Ian Hoffmann, Lew Friedman and Ray Rogers, joined thousands of students, activists, union members and people from interfaith communities to support the protest to shut down the School of the Americas (SOA).

The SOA, renamed the "Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation," but better known as the School of the Assassins, is a U.S. military training school for Latin American soldiers located in Ft. Benning, Georgia. The school is synonymous with torture and military repression around the world. Its graduates have long been associated with military coups, paramilitary death squads, human rights abuses and the suppression of popular movements. Hundreds of thousands, according to SOA Watch, have been tortured, raped, murdered and "disappeared" by those trained at the SOA.

A contingent of two busloads of students from the University of Western Ontario and other London, Ontario, Canada, students heading back to Canada with "Shut Down SOA/Stop Killer Coke" posters and Stop Killer Coke literature.

A 2001 lawsuit, SINALTRAINAL, et al v, The Coca-Cola Co., et al, charged that Coca-Cola's bottlers in Colombia: "contracted with or otherwise directed paramilitary security forces that utilized extreme violence and murdered, tortured, unlawfully detained or otherwise silenced trade union leaders..."

"The U.S. government has trained over 10,000 of Colombia's military troops at the School of the Americas...SOA training manuals, which the Pentagon was forced to turn over in 1996, show that the U.S. encouraged these troops to engage in torture and murder of those who, inter alia, do 'union organizing and recruiting'; pass out 'propaganda in favor of the interests of the workers', and sympathize with demonstrators or strikers.'

"As a consequence of the official vilification of trade unions by the Colombian and U.S. governments as well as corporations operating in Colombia, Colombia has led the world in the number of murders of trade unionists."

The campaign distributed more than twelve thousand pieces of literature and thousands of posters and was met with overwhelming support, as in years past. Ray and Ian spoke to a packed audience in our annual SOA workshop. Students attending the workshop came from schools across North America, most of them Coca-Cola campuses. They brought back packs of our literature to their campuses. Among the universities and colleges included were:
Bates College
Beloit College
Binghamton University (SUNY)
Brebuef Jesuit Preparatory School
DePauw University
Georgia State University
Holy Names University (Oakland, CA)
Kings College
Loyola University
McPherson College
Newman University
Notre Dame De Namur
Richmond High School (CA)
St. Catherine University
University of Georgia
University of Kansas
University of Western Michigan
University of Western Ontario
Warren Wilson College
Webster University

Students from schools with Coke contracts returned to their respective campuses with the knowledge, enthusiasm and literature necessary to get Killer Coke campaigns off the ground.

During the event, Lew staffed the Stop Killer Coke tables and spoke to participants in the convention center. Jeffrey Wright, former employee of Coca-Cola and author of "What Coca-Cola Did to Stop the Union from Coming In: Revealing Secrets Inside Corporate Scandals," also staffed our tables, spoke to participants and sold numerous copies of his book.

Members of the Campaign attended the Sunday morning procession at the gate of Ft. Benning, the military post that houses the School of the Americas. Marching were members of the United Auto Workers, Vets for Peace, many religious and political groups and numerous high school, university and college students and professors.

Sunday morning procession led by Father Roy Bourgeois and actor Martin Sheen.

As we left Ft. Benning, we noticed that none of the vendors on the side of the road were carrying Coca-Cola products. The vendors learned last year that no one wanted to purchase Coke beverages that are linked to human rights abuses in Latin America. We noticed that they carried Faygo, one of our listed alternatives to Coke.

For information on the School of Americas, please visit: http://soaw.org.

b. Links Between SOA and Coca-Cola

On the website of

Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation (WHINSEC)
aka School of the Americas/School of the Assassins (SOA)
there is a description of its Board of Visitors:

"When Congress passed the Defense Authorization Bill for 2001 and President Bill Clinton signed it into law, WHINSEC was created. The law called for a federal advisory committee — the Board of Visitors (BoV) — to maintain independent review, observation, and recommendation regarding operations of the institute. The 14-member BoV includes members of the Senate and House Armed Services Committees, representatives from the State Department, U.S. Southern Command, U.S. Northern Command, the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, and six members designated by the Secretary of Defense. These six members include representatives from the human rights, religious, academic, and business communities. The board reviews and advises on areas such as curriculum, academic instruction, and fiscal affairs of the institute. Their reviews ensure relevance and consistency with US policy, laws, regulation, and doctrine."

For the past two years, the chair of the board has been Dr. Johanna Mendelson Forman who is a senior associate of CSIS Americas Program. CSIS, the Center for Strategic and International Studies is chaired by Coca-Cola Board Member Sam Nunn. Also on the board of CSIS is Muhtar Kent, the Chairman and CEO of The Coca-Cola Co., as well as E. Neville Isdell, the Company's former Chairman and CEO.

The CSIS is also heavily linked to the oil industry since Sam Nunn is on the board of Chevron and Rex Tillerson, Chair and CEO of Exxon Mobil, is on the board of CSIS.

The Vice-Chair of the Board of Visitors is Dr. Joseph Palacios, who is an assistant professor at the Center for Latin American Studies, a part of Georgetown University's Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service. Coca-Cola Board Member Donald McHenry is a Professor in Practice of Diplomacy at the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service. McHenry has been a director of The Coca-Cola Company since 1981. Georgetown University is a Coca-Cola campus to the chagrin of many students at the university.
3. Occupy Wall Street

Jeffrey Wright, author of "What Coca-Cola Did to Stop the Union from Coming In," at Occupy Atlanta.

In our last newsletter , we noted that members of our campaign had been supporting the Occupy Wall Street movement that operated out of Zuccotti Park (renamed Liberty Park by the Occupy movement) in New York City. Recently at a meeting in Hawaii, attended by Pres. Obama and a slew of world leaders, Makana, who has sung at the White House, sang, "We Are the Many," a song in support of the international Occupy movement:

"Ye come here, gather 'round the stage
The time has come for us to voice our rage
Against the ones who've trapped us in a cage
To steal from us the value of our wage...

"We'll occupy the streets
We'll occupy the courts
We'll occupy the offices of you
Till you do
The bidding of the many, not the few"

We Are The Many - Makana
Watch Video

4. Swedish Journalists view 'The Coca-Cola Case' & do Q&A by Skype

On December 7, 2011, the Swedish Union of Journalists screened "The Coca-Cola Case" in Stockholm Sweden.

Campaign to Stop Killer Coke Director Ray Rogers was able to participate in the discussion via Skype and responded to many questions. He asked that the Union of Swedish Journalists pass a resolution to ban all Coke beverages from the union's facilities and functions and urged them to investigate and report on the Company's worldwide labor, human rights and environmental abuses, something that most of the American press has shown a reluctance to do.
5. Tony Benn moderates 'The Coca-Cola Case' screening in London

The London Socialist Film Co-Op screened "The Coca-Cola Case" on Sunday 11 December at the Renoir Cinema. Although it is hard to get people to screenings at 11am, a large audience of 127 attended, 53 of whom were not members of the LSFC. This was the second screening of the film in England and we were helped to promote it by the South East Regional TUC, the Campaign for Press and Broadcasting Freedom and by a number of socialist organisations, who did so mainly because Tony Benn was leading the discussion, but also because the film was felt to be important. The film was programmed as a free event because of some initial confusion over obtaining it, but the audience donated generously and the costs of the cinema and film hire were met.

The Coca-Cola Case was received with enthusiastic applause and Tony Benn opened the discussion, by saying he had seen the film twice on DVD and was now seeing it for the third time. He said The Coca-Cola Case was a powerful film that should be widely screened. He was both enlightened and depressed by the film, most people saw Coca Cola as just a fizzy drink and for him, someone known as a tea drinker who did not take alcohol, as a useful alternative

Questions were taken four at a time from the audience and the panel then replied. The audience seemed stunned by what they had seen and most of the questions related to what could be done. One person spoke of being involved in the Campaign to Stop Killer Coke at the University of Michigan, another wanted to know what had happened in Colombia since its making and people mentioned that they were aware of Coca Cola's crimes in India, but not in Latin America and elsewhere.

Tony replied that there was a need to spread information about the nature of The Coca Cola Company to counteract its propaganda. He said that the film must be viewed by as many people as possible and that there should be continuity between seeing the film and action. He reminded the audience that Coca Cola was a sponsor of the London Olympics and asked us to consider what action could be taken around the Olympics to highlight the Company's wrongs.

A member of the audience mentioned the opposition to Dow Chemical's Olympic sponsorship, because of its involvement in Bhopal and wondered if there were any anti-DOW groups in the UK who could be contacted about joint action. The Coca-Cola Case was shown with a short film about village life in India and parallels were drawn between the two films. The audience was told of attacks on trade unionists and political activists in India by Corporations keen to buy up land and drive villagers out.

Tony Benn said The Coca-Cola Case must be seen in the run up to and during the Olympics. He spoke about the power of Corporations, how as a government minister he was able to win concessions from BP because they wanted access to North Sea oil, but Coca Cola's corporate power rested on sugar and water. He also spoke of a media frightened by the power of Corporations into not giving out information. He mentioned hope on a number of occasions during the discussion and had said trade unions were involved in Colombia. He ended the discussion on a positive note telling the audience once again to have hope because we can defeat these people

The Coca-Cola Case is available for theatre screening in the UK from Dogwoof. They can arrange demonstration screenings if NGOs or other organisations are considering it for their film programmes. For home viewing, it can be downloaded to iTunes from Dogwoof's website and they hope to have DVDs for sale in 3-6 months.

When the DVD is available, the LSFC will sell it on its stand at future screenings. The LSFC will give its members details of the Campaign to Stop Killer Coke's website in its next newsletter.

Submitted by Ann O'Brien
6. 'The Coca-Cola Case' screened in Taiwan

"The Coca-Cola Case" was shown on Sunday, December 4 in Hsinchu City, Taiwan, at the Image museum and on Thursday, December 22 at Dong Hwa University at Hualien City in Taiwan.

"The Coca-Cola Case" kicked off the Taiwan International Labor Film Festival on Oct. 20th and had been translated into Mandarin.
7. Muhtar Kent and Penn State have something in common — Cover-ups

"If you're always focused on promoting the brand and there's no scrutiny, that leads to covering up," said E. Paul Durrenberger, an anthropology professor. This quote published in The New York Times ["Rich in Success, Rooted in Secrecy," Nov. 22, 2011] was directed at the Penn State child abuse scandal.

At the April 2011 Coca-Cola annual shareholders meeting, Coke CEO and Chair Muhtar Kent denied that there were any lawsuits in Mexico or Guatemala pending against Coca-Cola; he denied that aspartame was a dangerous ingredient in diet beverages and he denied that BPA in beverage cans was dangerous. Former Coca-Cola CEOs Douglas Daft and E. Neville Isdell also lied and covered up the Company's human rights abuses.

These denials focusing on protecting the brand led to Campaign Director Ray Rogers calling out: "You are a liar! You are a liar!"

Ray Rogers statement at the 2011 Coca-Cola shareholders meeting

A few years ago we published a quote from the director of the "Constant Gardener," in which he discussed how corporate policymakers will deny, that is, lie, when they are caught in corporate abuses.

Fernando Meirelles, Director of the film, "The Constant Gardener," said in the Bonus Features of the DVD: "We met with the chairman of a big pharmaceutical company. The first thing he told us was ''This is bullshit! We just help people.' (referring to accusations that pharmaceutical companies test drugs in Africa resulting in deaths of patients)

"...Suppose you were testing a drug here and some people died, what would you do? Would you go public? Would you try to cover? He said: 'Yes, I would have to cover.'

"Well, that's my plot. I was really impressed. I never expected the chairman of a company would say this. He was really honest. He said: 'I would have to cover.' "

Don't these quotes remind you of Muhtar Kent and the policymakers of The Coca-Cola Company?
8. Additional lawsuits against Coca-Cola

a. Coca-Cola Sued for California Labor Law Violations

"BISNAR CHASE Employment Attorneys Cite Multiple California Labor Law Infractions," InsuranceNewsNet, Nov. 10, 2011
Read Article

"The California employment attorneys of BISNAR CHASE today announced they have filed a class action lawsuit against Coca-Cola and its affiliates for allegedly violating multiple California labor laws (Case # BC469212) .

"The case against Coca-Cola Enterprise, Inc., BCI Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Los Angeles, and BCI Coca-Cola Bottling Company, with facilities in and around Los Angeles County and other counties within the state, was brought by plaintiffs Timothy Sulu and Jonathan Verdugo for alleged labor law violations against both men and other Coca-Cola employees - roughly 1,500 in all - beginning in September 2007."

b. "Family sues Coke over assets once seized by Egypt's anti-Jewish campaign," posted on November 15, 2011 at 1:30pm by Sharona Schwartz
Read Article

"...one case bringing light to the issue will be argued in the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York City between a Jewish family once bullied into emigrating from Egypt and the Coca-Cola Company which later bought part of a company sitting on the Jewish family's property. The property had years before been seized by the Egyptian government during an anti-Jewish campaign...

"One judge already fined Coca-Cola $15,725 for failing to respond to Bigio attorney discovery requests for information, according to family lawyers. The Bigios contend this is just one example of the corporation's 14-year effort to "extend this litigation endlessly" raising multiple technicalities with the hopes the Bigios will drop the case from sheer exhaustion."

For more information about the suit: http://www.killercoke.org/lawsuits_1997_bigio.php

c. "Native American files racial discrimination lawsuit against Coca-Cola" 10/24/2011 By Michelle Keahey, East Texas Bureau
Read Article

"A Native American merchandiser with Coca-Cola has filed a lawsuit claiming he was a victim of discrimination and ultimately lost his job due to that discrimination. John F. Johnson filed suit against Coca-Cola Refreshments USA Inc., formerly known as Coca-Cola Enterprises Inc. on Oct. 12 in the Eastern District of Texas, Sherman Division."
9. Coca-Cola Abuse Articles:

a. "Drinking This 'Popular Poison' is Worse than Smoking: by Dr. Mercola, November 21 2011
Read Article

"Soda, which is loaded with sugar primarily in the form of high fructose corn syrup, is a leading contributor to the rising rates of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and other chronic diseases facing Americans...

"Some of you reading this are undoubtedly thinking, how bad could soda really be? From my perspective, there is absolutely NO REASON you or your kids should ever drink soda. If you were stranded in the middle of a desert with no other fluid available, then maybe, but other than that ... none, nada, zip, zero. No excuses.

"From a health perspective, drinking Coke or any soft drink is a disaster. Just one extra can of soda per day can add as much as 15 pounds to your weight over the course of a single year, not to mention increase your risk of diabetes by 85 percent. The primary reason why soda is so dangerous to your health?


"If you think you're better off drinking diet soda, think again. In fact, if I had to choose between the two, I'd take regular soda over diet. Instead of fructose, diet soda contains artificial sweeteners, such as aspartame or sucralose (Splenda). With all the research now available on aspartame and its various ingredients, it's hard to believe such a chemical would even be allowed into the food supply, but it is, and it's been silently wreaking havoc with people's health for the past 30 years."

b. Coke losses battle to continue polluting Grand Canyon

"100,000 Signatures Overcome Coca-Cola in National Park Bottle-Ban Debate," TriplePundit, By Raz Godelnik | December 20th, 2011
Read Article

"If you're looking for good news for the holiday season, we've got something for you. The proposed ban on sales of disposable plastic water bottles in the Grand Canyon National Park, which had been abruptly shelved last year following alleged pressure from Coca-Cola is now moving forward and would take effect next year. One of the reasons for this change seems to be 100,000 signatures on a Change.org petition calling the National Park Service (NPS) to reconsider the ban.

"The Change.org campaign started after the New York Times unveiled this story on November, arguing that NPS Director, Jon Jarvis, blocked the plan to ban the sale of water bottles in the Grand Canyon, after conversations with Coca-Cola, a major donor to the National Park Foundation. 'While I applaud the intent" of the proposed new rule, Jarvis wrote last year in an email, "there are going to be consequences, since Coke is a major sponsor of our recycling efforts.' "

Please join the Campaign to Save the Grand Canyon from Coca Cola! Ban Plastic Bottles in the Park
Visit Website

"What can you buy with $13 million? If you're Coca-Cola, you can buy enough influence with the National Parks Service to cancel plans to make the Grand Canyon more environmentally friendly.

"Plastic water bottles are the biggest single source of garbage in America's most iconic national park. So the National Parks Service had a plan: ban the sale of plastic water bottles in the Grand Canyon and invest in refillable water stations instead. The park was just weeks from implementing the ban — and then Coca Cola stepped in.

"According to the New York Times, Coca Cola — which has donated $13 million to national parks — asked the National Park Service to not ban the sale of plastic water bottles. Incredibly, the head of the National Parks Service bowed to Coke, and cancelled the Grand Canyon's bottle ban."

"Parks Chief Blocked Plan for Grand Canyon Bottle Ban" By FELICITY BARRINGER, The New York Times, November 9, 2011
Read Article

"Weary of plastic litter, Grand Canyon National Park officials were in the final stages of imposing a ban on the sale of disposable water bottles in the Grand Canyon late last year when the nation's parks chief abruptly blocked the plan after conversations with Coca-Cola, a major donor to the National Park Foundation...

"Mr. [Stephen P.] Martin, a 35-year veteran of the park service who had risen to the No. 2 post in 2003, was disheartened by the outcome. 'That was upsetting news because of what I felt were ethical issues surrounding the idea of being influenced unduly by business,' Mr. Martin said in an interview."

c. "School lunches and child abuse, Washington-style" by Lawrence O'Donnell, The Last Word, MSNBC, November 16, 2011
Watch Video

"Coca-Cola... has now added to its prideful history using its lobbying power to kill the new healthier regulations for the school lunch program. There is no company in the world that can claim more credit than Coca-Cola for pushing the American childhood obesity rate above 30 percent."

"Congress Blocks New Rules on School Lunches" by Ron Nixon, The New York Times, Nov. 16, 2011
Read Article

"In a victory for the makers of frozen pizzas, tomato paste and French fries, Congress on Monday blocked rules proposed by the Agriculture Department that would have overhauled the nation's school lunch program.

"The proposed changes — the first in 15 years to the $11 billion school lunch program — were meant to reduce childhood obesity by adding more fruits and green vegetables to lunch menus, Agriculture Department officials said...

"Food companies including ConAgra, Coca-Cola, Del Monte Foods and makers of frozen pizza like Schwan argued that the proposed rules would raise the cost of meals and require food that many children would throw away.

"The companies called the Congressional response reasonable, adding that the Agriculture Department went too far in trying to improve nutrition in school lunches."

"It's a shame that Congress seems more interested in protecting industry than protecting children's health," said Margo G. Wootan, director of nutrition policy at the Center for Science in the Public Interest, a nonprofit research group. "At a time when child nutrition and childhood obesity are national health concerns, Congress should be supporting U.S.D.A. and school efforts to serve healthier school meals, not undermining them."

d. Report: Soda Companies Target Black and Latino Kids in High Numbers
ColorLines: News for Action, by Jorge Rivas, Nov. 28, 2022
Read Article

A new report from Yale's Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity has found that beverage companies are aggressively targeting black and Latino kids with ads to promote sports, fruit and energy drinks. The products that are promoted to kids of color happen to be among the least healthy of the 644 products studied by researchers at the university.

Black children and teens saw 80 percent to 90 percent more ads compared with white youth, including more than twice as many for Sprite, 5-hour Energy, and Vitamin Water...

Latino preschoolers saw more Spanish-language ads for Coca-Cola Classic, Kool-Aid, 7 Up, and Sunny D than older Latino children and teens did...

Coca-Cola, for example, has previously stated publicly that they wouldn't market ads in TV, radio and print programming aimed at kids under the age of 12.

But the Rudd Center's report found that children have been exposed to more sophisticated ads in recent years.

e. "Black Group Targets Corporations Over Voting Laws" by Suzanne Gamboa, Associated Press, December 8, 2011
Read Article

"...ColorofChange, is targeting companies that support the American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC, a nonprofit that has helped states pass photo ID laws, which are criticized by minority and civil rights groups. Its members include legislators and corporations, who pay higher fees to join...."

"Executive director Rashad Robinson is not yet naming the companies, but said Wednesday his group has already asked them once to drop their financial support of ALEC. ColorofChange also is asking its more than 800,000 individual members to sign a letter asking ALEC's corporate members, which include Coca Cola and Wal-Mart among others, to end their support for the group."

f. Coca Cola Lies to Doctors?

Dec. 28, 2011, Weighty Matters, Yoni Freedhoff [Family doc and founder of Ottawa's Bariatric Medical Institute - a multi-disciplinary, ethical, evidence-based nutrition and weight management centre.]
Read Article

Coca-Cola: "Can't remember the last Coca-Cola ad targeted at children? There's a reason...Parents tell us they prefer to be the ones teaching their children about beverage choices. That's why for over 50 years we've adhered to a company policy that prohibits advertising soft drinks to children...And as a founding member of Canadian Children's Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative, we've recently extended this policy to include all forms of media, including broadcast, print, the web and beyond."

Yoni Freedhoff: "So what's my issue? Well I can remember boatloads of Coca-Cola advertisements targeting children. From the famous Mean Joe Green football jersey commercial, to Santa Claus, little stuffed vending machine animals, animated polar bears, video games and recording and sports idols.

YF: Visiting the Coca-Cola company's website, you'll find that there's a lot of small print attached to their pledge but basically it comes down to this — it only applies to programming that is specifically geared towards children under the age of 12. I suppose that means targeting children during any family friendly shows (American/Canadian Idol, sports, some prime time stuff) is fair game and I suppose it also means Coca-Cola thinks your 12 year old is an adult."

g. "Activists Occupy Coca-Cola Factory In Kerala" by NAPM, 17 December, 2011, Countercurrents.org
Read Article

"About twenty two members of Plachimada Coca-Cola Virudha Samara Samithi and Plachimada solidarity forum including Vilayodi Venugopal, Sri N. P. Johnson, N Subramanyan, Fr. Augustine, M N Giri, Sahadevan and ors, walked in to the premises of the Coca Cola Factory in Kerala state, India and courted arrest. When produced the Magistrate ordered their release on furnishing personal bond but activists refused to take bail in protest against apathy on the part of state government and the delaying and subverting tactics in favour of Coca Cola. NAPM hails the action of these activists and salutes their courage for choosing to do this to bring home the dire need for quick passage of the 'Plachimada Coca-Cola Victims' Relief and Compensation Claims Special Tribunal Bill, 2011."

h. "Coca-Cola accused of propping up notorious Swaziland dictator; Swaziland's King Mswati III accused by activists of human rights abuses and of looting national wealth", by David Smith, The Guardian, Monday 2 January 2012
Read Article

Swaziland's king, Mswati III, pictured with some of his 13 wives. Photograph: AP

"Mary Pais Da Silva, co-ordinator of the Swaziland Democracy Campaign, called for Coca-Cola to pull out of the country immediately.

" 'Coca-Cola must know they're doing business with the wrong people,' she said. 'At the end of the day it doesn't benefit the economy in any way. Their profits don't help the average Swazi, while the king is getting richer by the day.' She added: 'The king is milking the country. This is entrenching him more and more, giving him economic strength to crush opposition. Nobody should do business with the regime in Swaziland. They should cut ties and take their business elsewhere.' "

i. "Coke helps save Canada's polar bears but exploits developing countries" by Nick Fillmore, A Different Point of View, Dec. 29, 2011

"The Coca-Cola Company has put on a happy face for the North American public by pledging to help protect the iconic polar bear while, at the same time, continuing to be one of the worst environmentally destructive corporations in the underdeveloped world.

"Pointing out on its website that the rapid loss of sea ice in the Arctic threatens the future of the polar bear, Coke says it is extending its financial support for the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) with $2-million over 5 years toward conservations, as well as matching funds up to $1-million."

However, this project raises two important questions:
Should Coke be allowed to get away with the hypocrisy of exploiting an emotional campaign to help save polar bears while at the same time, depleting water resources, exploiting workers in developing countries, and telling us that it is 'fun' to drink its sugar-laden products?
Secondly, should the World Wildlife Fund Canada be taking money from a corporation that destroys the environment and wildlife in other parts of the world?

To read full article: http://nickfillmore.blogspot.com/2011/12/coke-helps-save-canadas-polar-bears-but.html
10. Video: 1,000 Days and a Dream:
Watch Video

"Thousand Days and A Dream" is a poignant and dramatic account of the peaceful struggle of common people against a gigantic multinational company supported by the policies of the state in which the people have been deprived of their vital, basic natural resources and livelihood. Direction: P Baburaj & C SaratchandranIndia/2006/English/60 Mins
11. Angry Coke workers protest in Namibia and South Africa

"Coca-Cola workers bemoan low pay" by Albertina Nakale, New Era, 13 October 2011
Read Article

"Namibia Beverages Coca-Cola workers are unhappy over what they lament are 'low salaries'...

"We are doing heavy work, but we are not paid for it... They charged that with their low salaries, they are unable to afford medical aid since the company does not contribute anything...

"Workers also charge they do not get paid for overtime...

" 'Every time we complain about our salaries, we are told if we are not happy, we can pack up and go home. They tell us there are a lot of unemployed people out there,' lamented another worker."

"Kimberley shops hit by strike," The New Age, November 22, 2011
Read Article

"The aim of the strike, which started a week ago, is to demand the scrapping of labour brokering and closure of the wage gap among employees, among other things.

"The employees, who are members of the Food and Allied Workers Union, said their salaries in the central region of Kimberley and Bloemfontein were lower than employees' salaries in the East London and Mpumalanga plants."

"Coca-Cola strike enters second week," SABC, [South Africa] November 22, 2011
Read Article

"The strike at Coca-Cola Fortune factories countrywide has entered its second week with no indication of a possible breakthrough. Talks between the company and the Food and Allied Workers Union (Fawu) deadlocked last Friday.

"Last week, Fawu workers downed tools over a number of work-related issues including the closing of the wage gap between different plants. According to the union nearly 2000 workers are taking part in the strike."

Dog, Cat, Rat

The American people want another choice for president, well.....

This guy looks like he would make a better one than Obama for sure!!

This is a video of a homeless man in Santa Barbara and his pets.

They work State Street every week for donations.

The animals are pretty well fed and are mellow.

They are a family. The man who owns them rigged a harness up for his cat so she wouldn't have to walk so much (like the dog and himself).

At some juncture the rat came along, and as no one wanted to eat anyone else, the rat started riding with the cat and, often, on the cat!

The dog will stand all day and let you talk to him and admire him for a few chin scratches.
The Mayor of Santa Barbara filmed this clip and sent it out as a holiday card.

Stop Obama's Gun Ban!!!

Taken from: http://www.nagr.org/M1_RP_BannerSurvey2.aspx?pid=th01

Dear fellow American,

Nearly 1 million American rifles banned by a stroke of Barack Obama’s pen.

In a move unprecedented in American history, the Obama Administration quietly banned the re-importation of nearly one million American made M1 Garand and Carbine rifles.

The M1 Garand, developed in the late 1930’s, carried the United States through World War II seeing action in every major battle.

Now, South Korea, which received the rifles as a loan during the Korean War, wants to give American gun collectors the chance to get their hands on this unique piece of history.

But according to Hillary Clinton’s State Department there is a danger they might, possibly, one day “fall into the wrong hands.”

Let me be clear: at no time in U.S. history has the ownership of this firearm -- or any part of this firearm -- been illegal, restricted or banned.

Americans have collected World War II M1 Garand and Carbines for decades.

I’m helping lead the fight to defeat this radical gun ban in the United States Senate and I want your help.

Please join me by taking a public stand AGAINST this outright assault on our Second Amendment rights by signing the Official Firearms Freedom Survey below!

For Freedom,

Rand Paul
U.S. Senator (R-KY)

Go here to answer the survey below: http://www.nagr.org/M1_RP_BannerSurvey2.aspx?pid=th01

Official Firearms Freedom Survey

1. Do you believe the United States Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Second Amendment are the Supreme Law of the Land?

Yes No Unsure

2. Do you believe that Barack Obama Banning the re-importation of these Historic Firearms is an unprecedented and unconstitutional power grab?

Yes No Unsure

3. Do you support Congress forcing Barack Obama to Reverse his ban and save these American made rifles from Destruction?

Yes No Unsure

4. Will you vote AGAINST any Senator who votes to maintain Barack Obama’s M1 Garand Rifle Ban?

Yes No Unsure

First Name: Required
Last Name: Required
Email Address: Required
Confirm Email: Required
Zip: Required

The National Association for Gun Rights is dedicated to protecting your Second Amendment rights. We will never stop fighting the constant onslaught of anti-gun legislation from Sarah Brady's cronies in Congress, but overcoming such a well-financed enemy is a difficult battle.

The National Association for Gun Rights, Inc. is a non-profit, tax-exempt advocacy organization under section 501(c)4 of the IRC. Contributions or gifts to NAGR are not tax deductible for IRS purposes. Not paid for at taxpayer expense.

Copyright © 2011 National Association for Gun Rights

Rick Santorum has never heard of America

Oh ya this is the guy I want to run my country NOT!!!!!

What the hell is in the water down there anyway???


Rick Santorum's fear of freedom

The American Conservative

Those suspicious of Santorums commitment to individual rights need look no further than Santorum himself for confirmation. As he told NPR in 2006,

"One of the criticisms I make is to what I refer to as more of a libertarianish right. This whole idea of personal autonomy, well I dont think most conservatives hold that point of view. Some do. They have this idea that people should be left alone, be able to do whatever they want to do, government should keep our taxes down and keep our regulations low, that we shouldnt get involved in the bedroom, we shouldnt get involved in cultural issues. You know, people should do whatever they want. Well, that is not how traditional conservatives view the world and I think most conservatives understand that individuals cant go it alone. That there is no such society that I am aware of, where weve had radical individualism and that it succeeds as a culture."

Santorum reveals no antipathy toward unfettered state power at all; in his world taxes are tithes, not theft. For the rest of us, his own nephew has a more realistic take in his endorsement of Ron Paul:

"If you want another big-government politician who supports the status quo to run our country, you should vote for my uncle, Rick Santorum. America is based on a strong belief in individual liberty. My uncles interventionist policies, both domestic and foreign, stem from his irrational fear of freedom not working."

Monday, January 9, 2012

US agents helped Mexican, Colombian drug traffickers launder millions in drug proceeds

Taken from: http://www.globalnews.ca/world/world/report+us+agents+helped+mexican+colombian+drug+traffickers+launder+millions+in+drug+proceeds/6442555508/story.html
Olga Rodriguez, Monday, January 09, 2012 11:24 PM

MEXICO CITY - Mexico's government allowed a group of undercover U.S. anti-drug agents and their Colombian informant to launder millions in cash for a powerful Mexican drug trafficker and his Colombian cocaine supplier, according to documents made public Monday.

The Mexican magazine Emeequis published portions of documents that describe how Drug Enforcement Administration agents, a Colombian trafficker-turned-informant and Mexican federal police officers in 2007 infiltrated the Beltran Leyva drug cartel and a cell of money launderers for Colombia's Valle del Norte cartel in Mexico.

The group of officials conducted at least 15 wire transfers to banks in the United States, Canada and China and smuggled and laundered about $2.5 million in the United States. They lost track of much of that money.

In his testimony, the DEA agent in charge of the operation says DEA agents posing as pilots flew at least one shipment of cocaine from Ecuador to Madrid through a Dallas airport.

The documents are part of an extradition order against Harold Mauricio Poveda-Ortega, a Colombian arrested in Mexico in 2010 on charges of supplying cocaine to Arturo Beltran Leyva. A year earlier, Beltran Leyva was killed in a shootout with Mexican marines in the city of Cuernavaca, south of Mexico City.

The documents show Mexico approved Poveda-Ortega's extradition to the United States in May, but neither Mexican nor U.S. authorities would confirm whether he has been extradited. Mexican authorities listed his first name as "Haroldo."

In a statement issued late Monday, Mexico's Attorney General's Office said it co-operates with the United States in combatting money laundering and said the Poveda-Ortega case, like others of its kind, "are carried out strictly within the legal framework."

While the statement said that "co-ordinated money laundering investigations are carried out exclusively by Mexican authorities," it also noted that "sometimes, these investigations require specialized techniques to detect money laundering, which each agency carries out within its own jurisdiction."

U.S. officials did not respond to requests for comment.

The documents offer rare glimpses into the way U.S. anti-drug agents are operating in Mexico, an often sensitive subject in a country touchy about national sovereignty.

On one occasion, the informant who began working for the DEA in 2003 after a drug arrest met with the girlfriend of a Colombian drug trafficker in Dallas and offered to move cocaine for their group around the world for $1,000 per kilo. In a follow-up meeting, the informant introduced the woman to a DEA agent posing as a pilot. The woman is identified as the girlfriend of Horley Rengifo Pareja, who was detained in 2007 accused of laundering money and drug trafficking.

Another scene described the informant negotiating a deal to move a cocaine shipment from Ecuador to Spain and minutes later being taken to a house where he met with Arturo Beltran Leyva.

Beltran Leyva was once a top lieutenant for the Sinaloa drug cartel, led by Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman. But he split from the cartel shortly after his brother was arrested in 2008, setting off a bloody battle between the former allies.

Fractured cartels have led to an increase of drug violence in Mexico. According to several counts more than 45,000 people have been killed since late 2006, though the government stopped giving figures on drug war dead when the toll hit nearly 35,000 a year ago.

On Monday, police in western Mexico found the bodies of 13 men at a gas station in the state of Michoacan.

The bodies were dumped near a convenience store on the gas station lot in the town of Zitacuaro, said Michoacan state prosecutors spokesman Jonathan Arredondo.

Arredondo said threatening messages were found with the bodies, but he wouldn't comment on their content or give any other details.

However, the federal Interior Department later said a total of 15 bodies had been found in Zitacuaro. The statement did not specify whether all were found at the gas station.

Also Monday, the Michoacan state prosecutors office reported three high school students were shot to death by assailants who opened fire from a passing vehicle while the youths were relaxing in a park in the town of Yurecuaro, near the border with the neighbouring state of Jalisco.

There was no evident motive in the attack.

The western state of Michoacan is home base to The Knights Templar cartel, which like its predecessor, La Familia, is a pseudo-religious gang specializing in methamphetamine production, drug smuggling, extortion and other crimes.

© The Canadian Press, 2012

Read it on Global News: Global News | Report: US agents helped Mexican, Colombian drug traffickers launder millions in drug proceeds

Earth to Rick Santorum

Taken from:  http://www.dailypaul.com/201823/earth-to-rick-santorum-libertarians-founded-the-united-states

Libertarians Founded the United States 

Submitted by Tom Mullen 


Andrew Napolitano recently showed a clip in which Rick Santorum explained his views on libertarianism. His comments are also instructive in understanding his animosity (politically) towards Ron Paul. Santorum said:

“One of the criticisms I make is to what I refer to as more of a Libertarianish right. They have this idea that people should be left alone, be able to do whatever they want to do, government should keep our taxes down and keep our regulations low, that we shouldn’t get involved in the bedroom, we shouldn’t get involved in cultural issues. That is not how traditional conservatives view the world. There is no such society that I am aware of, where we’ve had radical individualism and that it succeeds as a culture.”

As David Boaz pointed out in the interview with Napolitano, Santorum seems to oppose a basic American principle- the right to the pursuit of happiness. I agree with him on this, but there is something even more fundamental here than that. It has to do with the conservative philosophy itself. One of the statements that Santorum makes is true. "That is not how traditional conservatives view the world."

There is a great disconnect between average Americans who refer to themselves as "conservatives" and the small group of politicians and politically-connected businessman who likewise refer to themselves. The members of the former group believe in the founding principles of the United States, including the inalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. They believe that these rights are endowed by their Creator. In other words, they preexist the government. They are not created by the government. It is the government's one and only job to protect those rights and when the government fails to protect them and instead violates them, it is the duty of the people to alter or abolish the government.

These inalienable rights are also referred to as "natural rights," meaning that man possesses them even in the state of nature (the state without government). For Jefferson, whose philosophy was inspired by Locke, the reason that men formed governments was to protect these rights better than they could be protected otherwise.

Locke viewed man in his natural state as capable of both good and evil. For Locke, man's natural state was a state of reason, which meant that he respected the rights of other men and observed the natural law of non-aggression. "The state of nature has a law of nature to govern it, which obliges every one: and reason, which is that law, teaches all mankind, who will but consult it, that being all equal and independent, no one ought to harm another in his life, health, liberty, or possessions."

For Locke and his philosophical heir Jefferson, this natural law of non-aggression was the basis of government power. By prohibiting aggression by one person or group against another, the government would preserve the natural rights to life, liberty, and property. Importantly, repelling aggression was also the limit of government power, for when the government exercised power for any other reason it was committing aggression itself and invading the rights it was meant to protect.

That this was Jefferson's guiding political principle is clear from his many statements to that effect. In his first inaugural, he argued for,

"...a wise and frugal Government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government, and this is necessary to close the circle of our felicities."

In a letter to Francis Walker Gilmer in 1816, he wrote, “Our legislators are not sufficiently apprised of the rightful limits of their powers; that their true office is to declare and enforce only our natural rights and duties, and to take none of them from us. No man has a natural right to commit aggression on the equal rights of another; and this is all from which the laws ought to restrain him.”

Even on religious freedom, Jefferson based his position on the non-aggression principle. "“The legitimate powers of government extend to such acts only as are injurious to others. But it does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods, or no god. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg."

As you can see, the non-aggression principle defines liberty itself as Jefferson understood it. For him, as well as the likeminded libertarians that led the secession from Great Britain, the word "liberty" as used in the Declaration of Independence had a specific definition. It meant the right to do what one pleases as long as one does not invade the life, liberty, or property of another human being. In other words, each individual was beyond the reach of government power so long as he committed no aggression against anyone else.

These are not conservative ideas. They are libertarian ideas. While Jefferson, Samuel Adams, and the others who espoused this theory may not have called themselves by that name, the basic tenets of their philosophy were the same. Today, the non-aggression axiom remains the fundamental basis for libertarian theory. Ron Paul bases his positions on it, as he said (about the 3:30 mark) when running for president on the Libertarian Party ticket in 1988.

Just as this non-aggression principle serves as the foundation and limit of government power between individuals within society, it is the foundation and limit of government power with respect to other nations. As all nations exist in a state of nature with each other, the natural law of non-aggression is the only one that governs them. As I've stated before, the non-aggression principle is the basis for the Declaration of War Power. The purpose of that power is for Congress to debate whether or not the nation in question has actually committed aggression against the United States. If it has, then a state of war exists and military action is justified. If it hasn't, there is no state of war, no declaration, and no military action is justified. The use of military force in the absence of a state of war (previous aggression by another nation) violates the natural law.

The conservative philosophy rejects all of these ideas. There were conservatives in the 18th century just as there are today and their philosophy hasn't fundamentally changed, either. The writer that most modern conservatives trace their philosophical ideas to was Edmund Burke. He has this to say about inalienable rights.

"Government is not made in virtue of natural rights, which may and do exist in total independence of it, and exist in much greater clearness and in a much greater degree of abstract perfection; but their abstract perfection is their practical defect. By having a right to everything they want everything. Government is a contrivance of human wisdom to provide for human wants. Men have a right that these wants should be provided for by this wisdom. Among these wants is to be reckoned the want, out of civil society, of a sufficient restraint upon their passions. Society requires not only that the passions of individuals should be subjected, but that even in the mass and body, as well as in the individuals, the inclinations of men should frequently be thwarted, their will controlled, and their passions brought into subjection. This can only be done by a power out of themselves, and not, in the exercise of its function, subject to that will and to those passions which it is its office to bridle and subdue. In this sense the restraints on men, as well as their liberties, are to be reckoned among their rights. But as the liberties and the restrictions vary with times and circumstances and admit to infinite modifications, they cannot be settled upon any abstract rule; and nothing is so foolish as to discuss them upon that principle."

While modern conservatives like Russell Kirk have pointed to Burke as their philosophical father, one can see clearly that Burke is here merely restating ideas from the true father of modern conservatism, Thomas Hobbes. Hobbes asserted that in the state of nature man had "a right to everything," even a right to one another's bodies. Hobbes asserted, as Burke implies here, that man's passions would always overcome his reason and because of this the state of nature was a state of war of "everyone against everyone." For Hobbes, as for true conservatives today, man has to give up his natural rights upon entering society and accept those privileges to liberty and property that the government grants him.

For Hobbes, not only did man give up his natural rights upon entering society, but he also had to grant the "sovereign" absolute and undivided power. This was necessary in order to completely dominate man's natural impulses, which would always lead him to harm his neighbor if they were not checked. This power must literally keep each individual "in awe," so as to make him fearful of committing any unlawful act. To secure this absolute power, the sovereign needed control over the economy, which he consolidated through a privileged, wealthy elite. He also needed control over education and even the religious beliefs of the people. No individual could ever be allowed to follow the dictates of his own will, as it would inevitably lead him to harm his neighbor or the commonwealth in general.

On foreign policy, Hobbes also viewed all nations as existing in a state of nature. However, since he viewed the state of nature as equivalent to the state of war, he viewed all nations not under control of the sovereign as de facto enemies. In reading Leviathan, one can almost hear George W. Bush's famous remark, "You are either with us or with the terrorists." This is why conservatives support the deployment of troops all over the world. Like Hobbes, they believe that we are in constant danger from any nation that we are not completely dominating with the threat of force.

The reason that conservatism seeks to "conserve" the status quo is because its adherents do not believe that natural rights are inalienable. Upon entering society, man has to give up all of his natural rights, so the only rights that man has in society are those he has been given by government in the past. Thus, if you get rid of the past, you get rid of the rights. While the status quo might not be optimal, the conservative believes that to get rid of the status quo means returning to the awful state of nature, and necessitates reconstructing man's rights - via government - all over again. Conservatives are always fearful that rights can be lost and never regained - as opposed to libertarians who believe that rights are inalienable.

The conservative tradition in America does not trace back to Thomas Jefferson or the Declaration of Independence. Its tenets are completely incompatible with the basic libertarian philosophy that informed Jefferson and that document. The conservative tradition in America traces back to Alexander Hamilton and the Federalists, who were the conservatives of their day. Hamilton sought to preserve the status quo, which was a central government with absolute power, along with its mercantilist economic system. The only change he sought was that the system be run by Americans rather than the British.

Hamilton was a Hobbesian on every issue, which is why he clashed so stridently with Jefferson. Hamilton also believed that the power of the federal government had to be absolute. Otherwise, the separate states would be in the state of nature with each other and inevitably at war. He often spoke of the "want of power in Congress" leading to the states "being at each other's throats." Economically, he wanted a central bank, high protectionist tariffs to enrich domestic manufacturer's at taxpayer expense, and "internal improvements," which meant the government using taxpayer money to build what we would today call "infrastructure." While all of these policies were anti-free market, they served the agenda of securing the loyalty of a wealthy elite to the government. Hamilton went so far as to call the national debt “a national blessing” for the same reason. On foreign policy, Hamilton was an unqualified militarist who sought to lead an army in conquering an American empire, starting with the Western Hemisphere possessions of Spain.

He felt justified in all of these invasions of individual rights and violations of non-aggresion because he believed that what he called "national greatness" (today conservatives call it "American Exceptionalism") trumped the rights of individuals. For Hamilton, as for conservatives throughout human history, the individual lived to serve the commonwealth, as opposed to the libertarian belief that the commonwealth only existed to serve the individual.

This conservative tradition can be traced throughout American history from the Federalists to the Whigs to the Republican Pary. The Republican Party was born as the party of big government, centralized power, and a mercantilist economy. Ironically, all that history remembers of the Republican Party at its birth in the 1850's is its opposition to slavery - its one libertarian position - while ignoring its Hobbesian conservatism on all other matters. However, with slavery abolished, the Republican Party retained the rest of its philosophy through the next century and right up to the present day. One can hear it rehashed in any 2012 Republican presidential primary debate.

Today, conservative American voters wonder why the Republican politicians that they elect never seem to make the government smaller or less intrusive. They refer to elected Republicans who consistently grow the size and power of the government as "RHINOS" (Republicans In Name Only). They believe these politicians are not "true conservatives," because while they may belong to the Republican Party, they do not adhere to the principles of an underlying conservative philosophy that they imagine exists. They are wrong. Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, George Bush, and the rest of the establishment Republicans are the true conservatives. The American voters identifying themselves as conservatives are really libertarians - they just don't know it yet.

Go to any Tea Party rally. This is where you will supposedly find "radical conservatives," but you won't find them carrying any signs quoting Alexander Hamilton. You won't find speakers extolling the virtues of government spending on infrastructure. Instead, you see signs quoting Thomas Jefferson and speakers mocking the many "bridges to nowhere" that have resulted from attempting to put Hamilton's conservative ideas into practice.

The one inconsistency is the Tea Party's support of the U.S. government's military empire. This false note in the otherwise libertarian movement is the result of cultural confusion. These conservatives don't yet realize that they aren't really conservatives. They are libertarians, and the warfare state does not jibe with the rest of the tenets of their philosophy. They support it because they have been told all of their lives that it is the conservative position, which it is. However, limited government, inalienable rights, free markets, and individual liberty are not.

Contrary to Rick Santorum's assertion that no society based upon radical individualism has ever succeeded, the libertarian, radical individualist principles upon which the United States was founded were precisely why it succeeded so spectacularly. It was libertarianism that made America different from any society before or since - what made it the "shining city on the hill" as Santorum calls it. It was the collectivist conservative philosophy that helped bring it down - with a lot of help from a third philosophical movement called Progressivism. Neither more conservatism nor more progressivism - nor any combination of the two - can solve the problems that America faces today. If Americans want to see liberty and prosperity restored in the United States, then restoring libertarianism is their only hope.

Tom Mullen is the author of A Return to Common Sense: Reawakening Liberty in the Inhabitants of America

Ron Paul on C-Span

Ron Paul spoke and took questions from voters at the Hollis Community Center in Hollis, NH. The latest Polls have Paul running second to Mitt Romney in the NH primary.

Taken from: http://www.usnews.com/news/blogs/Ken-Walshs-Washington/2012/01/09/ron-paul-gaining-momentum-in-new-hampshire-hed

Ron Paul Gaining Momentum in New Hampshire

Republican presidential candidates Ron Paul and Mitt Romney participate in the ABC News, Yahoo! News, and WMUR Republican Presidential Debate at Saint Anselm College January 7, 2012 in Manchester, New Hampshire.

Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul says he is gradually catching up to front-runner Mitt Romney in New Hampshire.

Paul didn't get much media attention when he made that claim at Sunday's New Hampshire debate, but the latest polls bear him out.

In a new Suffolk University/7News tracking survey released Monday, 33 percent of likely voters in Tuesday's Republican presidential primary say they are backing Romney, with Paul in second place at 20 percent. Romney's lead is somewhat shrinking while Paul is slightly gaining, along with former Utah Gov. John Huntsman, who is in third place with 13 percent.

[See pictures of the 2012 GOP candidates.]

The Suffolk/7News polls showed that Romney had slipped to 35 percent from 39 percent in a single day, while Paul was in second place with 20 percent, a rise from 17. Huntsman was in third place with 11 percent, up from 9. The other candidates were substantially behind.

Computing the average of several recent polls, Real Clear Politics also finds Romney in the lead and Paul in second place.

Paul argues that his candidacy is gaining momentum because his libertarian philosophy is so consistent and contrasts so sharply with the views of the other candidates in the Republican race. Paul wants to slash federal spending, abolish several departments, and withdraw American troops from many missions around the worid.

Ron Paul's Texas Straight Talk 1/9/12: No More Playing Fast and Loose with the Constitution!

The Ultimate Consumer Protection
by Ron Paul

This week, partisan games in Washington reached a fevered pitch as Congress acted to prevent recess appointments, yet the administration made them anyway. Congress has been gaveling into session for less than a minute every three days for the express purpose of technically staying in session. The 40 second "pro forma" sessions may strike supporters of the President as obstructionist, but Congress was using its clear constitutional authority and playing by the rules. Frustrated, the President simply disregarded the Constitution, and appointed Richard Cordray as head of the new Consumer Financial Protection Board, and Sharon Block, Richard Griffin, and Terence Flynn to the National Labor Relations Board anyway.

Playing fast and loose with the Constitution only gets worse with every administration. Because of the dangerous precedents being set, both parties would be wise to defend constitutional bounds, no matter who crosses the line. Defending a constitutional overstep always comes back to haunt them once power changes hands.

The Obama administration expressed extreme frustration with the Senate's refusal to confirm its nominees. The truth is, for better or worse, these are the cards the voters have dealt Washington. The Constitution, with its system of checks and balances, not only allows for gridlock, it practically guarantees some degree of it. The Founders knew that gridlock can be a very good thing. If nothing can be agreed upon in Washington, harm to the country is limited. Considering the Obama administration's ideas of what caused our problems, and how to solve them, the wisdom of the founders certainly shines through today.

According to the administration, the new Consumer Financial Protection Board is an absolute necessity. Another bureaucracy, with more rules and red tape and paperwork and procedures is supposed to protect the people from bad actors in the marketplace. On the contrary, the answer was staring us in the face in late 2008 when these bad banks and corporations threatened to go belly-up. The laws of economics were working to remove corrupt companies from the market forever, to never abuse or defraud another customer or depositor or shareholder again. Bankruptcy is the ultimate consumer protection, and what did Washington do? It protected the banks instead, and created more bureaucrats.

This is exactly why constitutionally-inflicted gridlock should be respected. But instead it is clearer than ever that we are now a nation ruled by men, not laws. This nation needs to respect the Constitution again. No exceptions. The oath of office to protect and defend the Constitution is still in effect when checks and balances get in the way of a political agenda. If not, it has no meaning at all.