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Archive for January, 2008

Republican primary

I don’t have a lot of time to devote to following politics, and truthfully, I was not looking forward to this year of presidential campaigning and election.

George W. Bush turned out to be a disappointment on a number of levels and I figured after his eight years we’d be left with a choice of the “least of the two evils.”

It’s likely it will come down to that in the general election. However, the Republican primary is turning out to be more interesting and fun than I expected. The reason is one candidate: Ron Paul. I’m not going to say I agree with him on every issue, but he is talking about some things that really do need to be addressed by somebody and that most politicians have not dealt with in a satisfactory manner.

As an example, Paul, himself an obstetrician, believes that Americans need to be given choices in health care, in other words, that they have access not just to conventional medicine, but the whole range of alternative options that exist and are in many cases, unapproved by the FDA.

Organizations like the FDA is another thing Paul talks about. It turns out the FDA, the IRS, and many other government bureaucracies are made up of people who are not elected and therefore, not accountable to us voters. More and more, those entities are making the rules and that is not a good trend, and yet each year, more such entities are created no whether it’s a Democrat or Republican majority. Everybody in power seems to love big government. I don’t.

Paul is the first politician I’ve encountered who has publicly questioned our involvement in the United Nations. The problem with the UN is that we did not elect any of the people in charge and yet they have some authority over us as a nation. Paul opposed the War in Iraq because he felt that we should not go to war to uphold resolutions that we didn’t pass. He also felt that if we’re going to declare war, Congress has to actually honest to goodness declare it and not shirk that responsibility. Our congress never did declare that war in Iraq and I’m not sure Congress has declared any of our wars in a long time.

There’s the privacy issue. I was horrified one day listening to Sean Hannity interviewing Newt Gingrich when Gingrich said he supported a national medical database to keep track of everyone’s medical records and decisions. I do not want that kind of intrusion into my life. I do not want the government knowing, for example, which vaccines my children have or have not taken or the last time I had a physical. I don’t ever want to be intimidated or forced into taking any form of medical treatment for any reason, and that includes national security issues. Paul is against forcing people to get vaccinated for any reason, period.

I could go on about the various issues, and little by little I’m educating myself about the different Republican candidates’ stands on various issues of importance to me. I’m not saying I’m going to vote for Paul. I am saying he has gotten my attention as a candidate who will tell it like it is and who wants to bring this country back to actually following the Constitution.

A breath of fresh air, at the very least.

I doubt Paul will win the nomination. The Republican party is just as into Big, intrusive government, globalization and Big Brother type surveillance in the name of national security as any other regime that has terrorized its people in the past. I don’t think the Republican party is ready for Ron Paul, and I’m not sure Paul has it straight on all the issues either. It is my hope, though, that he will get us all thinking and talking about some extremely important political issues.

I’m sure I’m going to have to hold my nose and vote in the presidential election, having to choose between two unattractive candidates who will do little to advance our nation in the right direction. But boy, it will sure be fun to cast my vote in the Republican Primary.

I hope Paul gives everyone a run for their money.

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