Rand Paul for Senate: Military Tribunals for Terrorists

by the Left Coast Rebel

Last year it was no surprise to anyone that knows me that I gave vocal support to Ron Paul in the GOP field. Above all, I supported his unrelenting, unyielding support of free markets and Austrian economics. He was the only candidate that offered that clear distinction. Paul is not one to give up a fight or acquiesce, case in point his recent win for Federal Reserve transparency. Name me another conservative that holds true and strong on an important issue like that.

And wins.

It is bizarre to me, the infighting amongst conservatives and liberty folks over Ron Paul. I know folks in the GOP that hate and despise him. They hate him more than the communist-Democrat-leftists. The issue predominantly comes down to national defense. You watch, just the mention of what I am going to say will probably bring me hate-mail.
I'll never forget the GOP prez debate where Paul went after Giulini or vice versa. I cringed and winced at Paul's comments about terrorism, etc. And although he may have a point on the 'hornet's nest' situation in the Middle East and I completely support his points on Afghanistan and Iraq being that we have no will to win.....

His rhetoric on the military, foreign affairs certainly made conservatives turn the channel on his cause. He offered no distinction in my opinion of being against boundless foreign entanglements, (which I am as well), and respect for our guys that are putting their lives on the line, (if you agree with the cause or not). There was no delineation.
Ron Paul's son Rand Paul running for the Senate in Kentucky has lifted brows and the ire of many in the Paulista camp recently because of a new direction that his camp is taking via. his stance on defense. After perusing the comments over at Daily Paul, many of these guys are ticked at what they percieve as a 'cave in' of Rand Paul. One commenter called for Rand to be 'waterboarded', another said that he was a 'neocon in sheep's clothing', yet another said he was a 'sellout'.
Of what do I speak of? How about this from Rand Paul's campaign site:
Were Dr. Rand Paul in charge of the budget, he would first demand that it be balanced. And second, he would make defense spending a top priority. In Rand’s proposed budget, defense spending would represent a larger percentage of the total budget than it does today, while military spending on unnecessary programs and unconstitutional operations would be eliminated.

Or this statement, just released, the true cause of the 'controversy':

Leading United States Senate candidate Rand Paul today criticized the Obama administration’s decision to close the Guantanamo Bay detention center and try terrorism suspects in United States Civil Courts.

“Foreign terrorists do not deserve the protections of our Constitution,” said Dr. Paul. “These thugs should stand before military tribunals and be kept off American soil. I will always fight to keep Kentucky safe and that starts with cracking down on our enemies.”

What's your take?

Visit his campaign site to see his stand on issues and to make a donation.


  1. My take is be careful. If one person doesn't deserve a fair trial, maybe you don't either. I expect rightwingers to approve government taking more power when Republicans are in charge. For the moment, though, Democrats are in charge, which means government power might be wrongly used to undermine things you support.

    The word terrorism, BTW, is meaningless, and it's thrown around now more than ever. Anything you don't like that kills or put lives at risk can be called "terrorism" and can be used as an excuse to increase government power.

  2. Please, this is what the establishment wants. Divide and conquer. Please don't let them succeed. Personally I don't agree with Rand on this particular issue, but he's still miles more free market, and non-interventionist then anybody else currently in the US Senate.

    Regarding the Military Spending, If the entire federal budget is cut down to 10% of it's current size obviously The military would be cut down to a fraction of it's current size too. Rand Paul is just saying that of that 10% left, defense should be the majority of that. so Rand is for dismantling much of the Military. Not as much as I, as an anarchist would like to see (which is a complete abolishment) but certainly more then anybody else currently in the US Senate.

    Trey Grayson attacked Rand on the issue because he knew it would be divisive. Trey new Paul either had to say one thing, and make the people of Kentucky very unhappy, or say another thing and cause problems in much of his national base.

    Please read the two articles I've put together. This is definitely a very well orchestrated event by the Trey Grayson camp. And Rand, being a little green to the political process simply had trouble with handling it.

    Rand Paul and Guantanamo: First debate with Trey Grayson

    Clinton backer turned GOPer Grayson calling Rand Paul a "flip flopper"

    Remember people, this is why we LIKE Rand, because he ISN'T a career politician, but that means he's going to make a mistake now and then.

    Rand Also clarified his positions which I've blogged about here:
    Clarifying Rand's Position on Guantanamo

    The problem then, seems to be the lack of any official declaration of war, like I've blogged about before. Had Rand been in the US Senate at the time, he would have forced an official declaration and there wouldn't be any question about whether or not these are prisoners of war and what their rights are vs regular citizens or "enemy combatants" (which seems to mean whatever Bush wanted it to mean).

    But the fact is the Afghanistan war wasn't done properly and constitutionally, and now we have to figure out the best way to unscramble an omelet. I will state for the record that I disagree with Rand on the issue, but I do think it's possible for libertarians and anti-war people to disagree on the best way to unscramble the evils of the state. Murray Rothbard and Frederick Hayek disagreed on the best way to unscramble the central bank, but they were both classified as solid Libertarians. read the rest

    PS, I like you're blog.

  3. @ CJ - I repsect your take and totally understand it. However, do you not think that KSM, the mastermind of 9/11 is a terrorist? If not a terrorist then what is he? Trust me, I am no alarmist on this issue, just asking.

    @ Tracy - Wow, thanks for the post/comment, you obviously know the subject matter here and I respect your take. To summarize, I think that infighting among activists w/Rand Paul is meaningless. He believes in free minds and markets. He would be a clear distinct voice for capitalism and freedom. To me it is nearly meaningless if he wishes to try terrorists here or there, anywhere. That is not the issue that I want him in the Senate to tackle.

  4. Yes, I agree. considering that I disagree with only 5% of Rand Paul's platform, And I disagree with 95% of everybody elses platform in the Senate. He has my support all the way. I don't view this as picking the "lessor evil." Except in the sense that, I didn't agree with Ron Paul on everything either (accept, with Ron I only disagreed with, like 2%).

    Don't forget to donate to our Moneybomb

    Would you like to add me to your blog-roll? http://randforsenate.blogspot.com/

    Over at Rand Paul forums we're noticing some anti-Rand Paul stuff showing up sometimes in the Google News feeds, and so I'm trying to build up my profile and link popularity to try and compete with that. I'm currently following you.


  5. I linked to your comment here.

  6. @LCR
    I am not very knowledgeable about KSR. Even if I were, though, I would not be able to answer whether he’s a terrorist because the word has no meaning. It’s commonly used to mean “contemptible”, so yes, from what I’ve heard about KSR he is contemptible.

    If the word means someone so contemptible that he can make us act outside of our normal human values, that’s more power than we should give to a word. It sort-of reminds me of the idea of Newspeak, in which words shape / limit thoughts to the end of increasing government power.

    If the word means politically-motivated mass murderer, that’s exactly what KSR’s accused of. I suspect when you dig deeper into the motivations of mass murderers, we’ll find that politics is a minor motivation and that the primary motivation is a character that’s flawed on a basic level. Some people with similarly flawed characters might join a gang of thugs that commit petty crimes. Some of them join law-enforcement or military where they can commit crimes somewhat within the parameters of their job. A small minority end up as mass murderers, probably b/c that was the opportunity that presented itself. My strong suspicion is at the core they’re not that different from garden-variety thugs, except they got lucky in the magnitude of their thuggery. They certainly don’t deserve their own word. They certainly don’t merit influencing policies, which incidentally is exactly what politically-motivated murderers claim they are trying to do.


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