Talk:Political positions of Ron Paul/Archive 2

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Archive 1 Archive 2 Archive 3

Lead Section

It would be helpful if the lead contained a paragraph that summarizes Paul's politics, preferably based on what he has written, as well as the influences on his thought. This would improve the article by helping the reader to understand his positions on different issues that can be bewildering to most people. In particular many of his votes are based on his belief that legislation is ultra vires, that the federal government is usurping its authority, especially in taxes and spending. The Four Deuces (talk) 00:35, 8 February 2009 (UTC)

FYI: The first graph of the lede of this afticle calls Mr. Paul a "2012" presidential candidate. One is not a presidential candidate until he or she reieves a party nomination or announces a run as an independent. It would be more accurate to call Mr. Paul "a current candidate for the 2012 Republican nomination for U. S. President and past presidential candidate in 2008..." Hope that makes sense. WhoWhoOwl (talk) 08:45, 11 January 2011 (CST) — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)

Supertown (talk) 21:14, 1 April 2012 (UTC)supertown Removed the word ambitious from the opening of the budget proposal. Wikipedia shouldn't take a position on whether or not a budget is ambitious, aggressive, counter-culture, or even fair. Words such as financially-balanced or other objective descriptions are appropriate, but not necessary.

Incorporation doctrine

I found two instances of Dr. Paul speaking out against something called the "incorporation doctrine": [1] and [2]. (talk) 15:03, 17 April 2009 (UTC)

That's Incorporation of the Bill of Rights. -- (talk) 19:29, 12 September 2011 (UTC)

Repetition, repetition, repetition

The Inflation and the Federal Reserve section says the same things many times. That section needs serious cleanup. How many times can it be mentioned that inflation is a hidden tax, and that Ron Paul opposes it? How many times do you need to say that Ron Paul has tried to introduce legislation? Please fix this section. (I just don't feel like doing it.) — Timneu22 · talk 18:12, 8 April 2010 (UTC)

9/11 Conspiracy

I recently saw a brief (one minute) interview with Ron Paul in which the reporter asked Ron Paul why he has "not come out about the 9/11 truth". He answered that he could not take the controversy, and that he had bigger problems to deal with, such as the Federal Reserve. He did not say that he believed the official story or did not believe the government hides truths about the attacks. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:26, 15 May 2010 (UTC)

Including this information would be giving undue weight. Paul clearly did not say he doubted the official story, he just plain said he does not want to get into this issue. It is not one of his positions, and not worth mentioning.John Pack Lambert (talk) 04:32, 26 January 2012 (UTC)

Abortion stance wording

There seems to be an edit war over whether his position on legalized abortion should be described as "anti-abortion" or "pro-life". I cannot find any overall Wikipedia consensus on the term that should be used; I do note that in the actual Abortion article, "pro-life" seems to be used more ("anti-abortion" tends to be used in the context of things such as the violent fringe of the movement). Having said that, I also know that the Associated Press Styleguide recommends the use of "anti-abortion", so there are good arguments that could be made on both sides. Regardless, an attempt should be made to discuss the issue here rather than edit warring. Kansan (talk) 14:36, 23 November 2010 (UTC)

To sum up my position as laid out on my talk page: We accept "pro-life" and "pro-choice" as descriptors for people, because they are self-identifications; unlike other editors in this discussion, I do not go about editing descriptions of people to put in buzzwords I like. However, laws are not people, and cannot self-identify, so we have to treat them as we'd treat anything else and describe them in non-biased language. This can take the form of using a neutral descriptor - "X supports anti-abortion legislation" - attributing the biased descriptor - "X supports legislation he describes as pro-life" - or suppressing the descriptor entirely - "X supports laws which would define a fertilized egg as a legal person." However, the latter two aren't really appropriate for a heading, so I think in this particular case we're obliged to use the neutral text.
Dictionary usage moreover is against applying "pro-life" to non-people/groups. (Interestingly, the OED accepts "pro-choice" as a word one can use to describe a law, but I think it's best to keep the policy equal.) I used OED, Merriam-Webster, and American Heritage.
I've been changing these because WP:NPOV is the standard we should be striving for. The self-identification rule allows for balance if not real neutrality, and while one might disagree, it's at least consensus. "X is pro-life" sort of implies "X describes himself as pro-life." If, on the other hand, you start letting biased text through in non-SI cases, NPOV is gutted. "This law is pro-life" - well, it certainly doesn't believe that abortion is wrong itself, because it hasn't a brain. Who has described it as pro-life? And why are we only listening to them instead of people who have described the law as anti-choice? Better to go with neutral text. Roscelese (talk) 14:51, 23 November 2010 (UTC)
As a previously uninvolved editor to the discussion, I do tend to agree with the arguments presented, most of all because buzzwords such as "pro-life" assume a familiarity with current political terminology/buzzwords, whereas the term "anti-abortion" succinctly describes the position. The usage of the term "pro-life" for people is as much of a courtesy to allow people to go by self-defined terms (and, on the same token, we would prefer "abortion rights legislation" to "pro-choice".) On the balance, I support usage of "anti-abortion". Kansan (talk) 14:57, 23 November 2010 (UTC)
Addendum: Thanks to the vicissitudes of the pro-life movement, I can anticipate some surreal sentences coming up once we try to use "pro-life" as a neutral descriptor - "X supported pro-life legislation like [thing], which would reduce unplanned pregnancies. Pro-life groups opposed the law..." But that hasn't been an issue so far, and thus isn't a cornerstone of my argument. Roscelese (talk) 15:16, 23 November 2010 (UTC)
Political positions of Ron Paul is the wrong article for this discussion; copying it to Talk:Pro-life#Pro-life legislation, as previously proposed on R's talk. R made this same change in perhaps 20 articles, so while the Ron Paul watchers should be free to comment there, it really needs the pro-life article watchers. JJB 20:07, 23 November 2010 (UTC)
As I haven't been involved in this discussion (I just came across the edit warring while patrolling changes), I was not aware how wide the scope is. Thanks for letting me know, John. Kansan (talk) 20:36, 23 November 2010 (UTC)

Ron Paul on the TSA

I think maybe a section should be added about Ron Paul's very strong stance on the recent TSA scannings and pat-downs. I think there are plenty of relevant news articles to support it. Anyone disagree? -Ferahgo the Assassin (talk) 08:16, 25 November 2010 (UTC)

"Jury Nullification"?

I don't see the connection between the name of the section "Jury Nullification" and the text of that section. A better section name might be "Autonomy of Juries," or "Power of Juries." In my understanding, jury nullification means something else entirely.

Iran and nuclear weapons

Ron Paul said it would be okay if Iran got a nuclear weapon in a republican debate. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:28, 16 August 2011 (UTC)


The "Prostitution and Sex Work" section currently looks like this:

Paul reaffirmed in a South Carolina Republican Presidential Candidate debate in May 2011 his support for prostitution being made legal, arguing that the Constitution grants American citizens the right to do "controversial things" as long as they do not hurt or defame other people. He further believes that it is none of the government's business what consenting adults do in private. His primary goal in this area is to abolish federal anti-prostitution legislation, leaving it up to the states to decide if they would want to legalize prostitution or not.

Which would be agreeable enough, except that it's already the case that states can decide if they want to legalize it or not. Nevada has done so, with restrictions, and I know of no reason some other state couldn't do the same.

Also, Paul didn't say anything in the debate about abolishing federal anti-prostitution laws, of which there are only a few, and they apply in rather limited circumstances. (In fact, he didn't even specifically address prostitution—he was responding to a question in which prostitution was mentioned among several other things.) It might be a safe assumption that he'd abolish those federal laws if he could, but that kind of speculation doesn't seem appropriate for this article.

I wouldn't say the section should be deleted, because Paul does support leaving prostitution up to the states, and even if that's the way it is now, I don't think many politicians are so willing to say it out loud. But it should at least be re-written to remove the implication that he's in favor of some kind of major change to current laws. I'll probably do it myself in the next few days, unless somebody beats me to it or talks me out of it. Jwsinclair (talk) 03:18, 18 August 2011 (UTC)

My review of this article

This article was flagged on the Wikipedia:Neutral point of view/Noticeboard as containing some problems relating to POV. I took a look at this article, and identified some problems, which I will list. Let me first state that the article does an excellent job identifying the political positions of Paul, however, some work is needed:

  • Under "Foreign policy", the article rightly notes that Paul has garnered support across the political spectrum for his foreign policy views. It then adds several detailed quotes as examples (not giving any quotes to the contrary). Might it be better to simply name some of those from different ideological points who support Paul?
  • The section on Cuba is one very large quotation from Paul consisting of several paragraphs. It really should be summarized instead (and it would be better to find several different sources to do so rather than just to take one speech of his).
  • The same issue with Cuba is also problematic on the WTO section. Even more problematic is the fact that it is from a deadlinked source. It really should be reworked rather than removed outright (which it could be as of now), because this is an important part of his views.
  • Under the part about Paul getting lower taxes, there are many positive quotations, and no negative ones. Rather than balance it with negative quotes, maybe we should do away with the positive ones - it is hardly remarkable that some support lower taxes, and this just goes to show Paul in a positive light.
  • There are two "citation needed" tags in the article.
  • "The only 2008 presidential candidate to earn Gun Owners of America's A+ rating" is no way to introduce a section in a neutral encyclopedia. One could just as easily list a negative score from a gun control group (but that would unnecessarily introduce anti-Paul bias).
  • The section on Paul's views on education needs to be summarized more and made more terse. Using examples such as the Nation of Islam seems like a way to introduce talking points into the article in support of Paul. His complex views on education can still be accurately represented in a more terse manner.

There are other issues with the article but this is what stood out to me. Kansan (talk) 19:46, 12 September 2011 (UTC)

Political Positions of Ron Position - IRAN

quote of current revert done by Kansan: "In the U.S. House of Representatives, only Paul and Dennis Kucinich voted against the Rothman-Kirk Resolution, which asks the United Nations to charge Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad with violating its genocide convention and charter"

1st in that voting against a resolution is not a position - positions are positives that other may adopt or advance in the form of a resolution that may be voted on - there is a difference, I think you vote on laws or resolutions, not positions

2nd two people voting is not a position, negative association w/ Dennis Kucinich are placed intentionally to influence the reader with your POV, not NPOV

3rd The UN is a governmental body that deals with relations between Nation States, it does not charge leader of Nations at all but the Nations themselves.

4th In this case there is clouding of the issue with the name of the president of Iran and alluding that Paul supports the president of Iran as a POSITION and

5th The inclusion of the Vote against the Resolution does not contain the word GENOCIDE, GENOCIDE was place there INTENTIONALLY to poison a persons thoughts on a candidate for the Office of President, for our United States - again not accurate and not NPOV, actually worse, Similar to distortion I noted in the Medved show today, which we cleared up w/ the posting of the GOP Resignation letter w/ that was deleted by Kansan, then reposted

here is the Resolution, notice no Genocide, and no Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

H. Res. 175: Condemning the Government of Iran for its state-sponsored persecution of its Baha'i minority and

6th The reference is a bad link to a youtube acct that no longer exists - not sure why - but funny CheersSnettie 00:02, 15 September 2011 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Snettie (talkcontribs)

Congressional appointment and Campaign Contribution sections are editorials

The Congressional appointment and Campaign Contribution sections are editorials directly taken from an old website. While they do state his viewpoints, they also state political opinions, rather than simply presenting the facts that he has stated. I propose that those sections be completely re-written, preferably using different sources. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:12, 27 September 2011 (UTC)

Is this article an advertisement?

This reads like Paulspam - that is to say it's worded and laid out like a propaganda sheet. Where's the "controversy" section even the most banal celebrity gets? Paul's certainly got some controversy. Where's the section on him flip-flopping around like a fish out of water? This "article" has been heavily edited by Paulspammers to paint him up and needs some objective reviewing and vetting very badly. (talk) 19:39, 4 November 2011 (UTC)

Too many opinions and assumptions / Bias

This article is full of opinions, assumptions and appears bias. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:07, 30 November 2011 (UTC)

Examples? (talk) 22:50, 25 December 2011 (UTC)

Use of word "consistent" in not supporting aid for Israel

Saying "consistent" is a pov statement. It's considered consistent by whom? Ron Paul supporters? Sure. Others? Not so much. I reworded to say that he justifies his support against aid because people have criticized him for not supporting Israel. That is a factual presentation. People accused him of being anti-Israeli while he strongly denies that charge and explains why. Claiming he is "consistent in his views" is just a promotion of this candidate. Arnabdas (talk) 16:03, 22 December 2011 (UTC)

The only POV content here is the insistence on saying Paul "justifies" his position in any way. While Paul may have pointed out his overall opposition to foreign aid when questioned about opposing aid to Israel at some point, this is not contained in the New York Times piece cited, and calling this "justification" is saying that maintaining the same stance across the board is somehow wrong and in need of justification. The cited article says "His votes against support for Israel follow quite naturally from his opposition to all foreign aid." This third-party secondary source clearly supports the original article content before the inaccurately attributed justification POV was substituted in. Fat&Happy (talk) 20:30, 22 December 2011 (UTC)
OK I understand your objection to the use of the word "justified," but that doesn't change the fact that "consistent" doesn't belong. Consistency is a clear pov statement. If a source believes it is consistent, then the source should be cited. Arnabdas (talk) 15:40, 23 December 2011 (UTC)
I do not want to engage in an edit war with you and it's clear that we have a difference of opinion on whether or not claiming Paul is consistent is pov or not. I request others opine on this. Arnabdas (talk) 18:35, 23 December 2011 (UTC)
I have changed the sentence to more closely match the New York Times article. It seems rather clunky but I think it is important to mention here (like the NYT article does) that he is not giving Israel any special treatment to counter the any misconception.Masebrock (talk) 18:47, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
I think Masebrock's edit is a good one and npov. I have removed the npov tag I placed there. Thanks to all. Arnabdas (talk) 15:24, 27 December 2011 (UTC)

Borders and immigration

Paul voted for the Secure Fence Act of 2006, authorizing an additional 700 miles (1100 kilometers) of double-layered fencing between the U.S. and Mexico mainly because he wanted enforcement of the law and opposed amnesty, not because he supported the construction of a border fence.

This sentence makes no sense. Why else would someone support the fence except for that very reason? If he only supported part of the bill, that needs to be stated. -- (talk) 00:07, 30 December 2011 (UTC)

Inflation and the Federal Reserve

This section accurately associates Paul's views on inflation with the so-called Austrian School of economics. Also, the section on inflation in the Austrian School article, Austrian_School#Inflation, clearly explains that Austrians normally mean monetary inflation rather than price inflation (which redirects to Inflation) when talking about "inflation".

However, this section links to inflation (price inflation) rather than monetary inflation when talking about Paul's views, which is misleading. For example, in the middle of the paragraph is this statement:

He says that to compensate for eliminating the "hidden tax" of inflation, Congress and the president would instead have to raise taxes or cut government services, either of which could be politically damaging to their reputations...

That reference to inflation links to the article about price inflation, not to monetary inflation, yet the latter is what he's talking about here.

I suggest that this clarification be made at the top of the section, because Paul's statements about inflation are often misunderstood and seen as nonsense because they are misinterpreted to be about price inflation when they're really referring to monetary inflation. --Born2cycle (talk) 21:09, 5 January 2012 (UTC)

Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000

Paul voted "no" on the Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000, which is curious considering his stance on government regulation. Does anyone know why? I've heard some libertarians say the FDIC has tainted the (risks in the) free market and made regulation a necessary evil, but I don't know if that is Paul's position. (They say this may also explain why he didn't vote for the Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act - another that seems up Paul's alley). I've heard others theorize that he may have voted "no" simply because it was 1,100 pages long and was rushed through in just a week. If anyone has a clearer answer, it might be worth mentioning in this article. Wknight94 talk 14:21, 15 January 2012 (UTC)


I removed a long quote and paraphrased it. It still would be better to find secondary sources that discuss more on Ron Paul's position on religion. It might also help to rename this section "Religion and Government" or "Religious Freedom".John Pack Lambert (talk) 04:58, 26 January 2012 (UTC)

I agree that there have been several sections of the "Political Positions of Ron Paul" article that could use a fair bit of reworking for clarity and brevity (particularly in the areas dealing with his views on economics and monetary policy). However, I completely disagree with the removal of that quote on freedom of religion in the Civil Liberties section of the article.
Here is the change that was made on 26 January
The previous version includes this quote:

In a December 2003 article entitled "Christmas in Secular America", Paul wrote: "The notion of a rigid separation between church and state has no basis in either the text of the Constitution or the writings of our Founding Fathers. On the contrary, our Founders' political views were strongly informed by their religious beliefs. Certainly the drafters of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, both replete with references to God, would be aghast at the federal government's hostility to religion. The establishment clause of the First Amendment was simply intended to forbid the creation of an official state church like the Church of England, not to drive religion out of public life. The Founding Fathers envisioned a robustly Christian yet religiously tolerant America, with churches serving as vital institutions that would eclipse the state in importance. Throughout our nation's history, churches have done what no government can ever do, namely teach morality and civility. Moral and civil individuals are largely governed by their own sense of right and wrong, and hence have little need for external government. This is the real reason the collectivist Left hates religion: Churches as institutions compete with the state for the people's allegiance, and many devout people put their faith in God before putting their faith in the state. Knowing this, the secularists wage an ongoing war against religion, chipping away bit by bit at our nation's Christian heritage. Christmas itself may soon be a casualty of that war."

The version after the change includes this passage as a replacement:

He rejects the notion of "separation of Church and state", instead seeing the issue as "free exercise of religion" and "no establishment of religion". He argues that churches give people a moral base that government cannot provide. He also argues this leads to a more orderly people who have less need for the government to actively seek to control them. He opposes efforts to force religion out of the public sphere.

The paraphrase accurately describes Paul's position on the principle of "separation of church and state," but it leaves out far too much important information. Virtually all US politicians see the principle of separation of church and state as an "issue of 'free exercise of religion' and 'no establishment of religion,'" so saying that Paul does as well does not really explain how his views differ from anyone else's. It's basically akin to saying that Paul argues that Congress should legislate and the courts should rule based on the Constitution. Everyone agrees on that. How does Paul's interpretation of what these statements mean differ? — that's the question.
The quote from Paul's "Christmas in Secular America" that was removed explicitly argues that Paul believes the government was established with a Christian heritage with references to God in the founding documents (an incorrect assertion, by the way), by a group of Founders whose politics were strongly influenced by their religious beliefs and who envisioned a robustly Christian yet religiously tolerant nation. The quote also illustrates very clearly the tone that Paul takes in his political writing. He says "the Left hates religion" and that "secularists wage an ongoing war against religion." There is a passion in that language (basically, 'this is a war of values' and 'our freedom of religious expression is under siege') that is not reflected at all in the paraphrase that was used to replace the quote.
It would be very hard, if it is even possible, to find any replacement that is as clear, concise, and elegant as the original quote from Paul himself.Dezastru (talk) 10:18, 26 January 2012 (UTC)

Environmental-related Legislative Activities

Several of the points listed under the category of Paul's environmental legislative activity cite a dead link to a youtube video: "Rep. Ron Paul for President - WMUR 4-27-07 - 2 OF 2" accessdate=2007-06-06

Does anyone have an active link for that interview? If not, does anyone have alternative references that still support the points?Dezastru (talk) 19:17, 26 January 2012 (UTC)

on tort reform

Re: "The latter of these groups also supports Paul because he advocates tort reform."


Voting record of him voting against tort reform:



Representative Paul opposes federal tort reform for the same reason he opposes most federal solutions--he believes the federal approach "damages the Constitution by denying states the right to decide their own local medical standards and legal rules." To that end, he has voted against many tort reform measures in Congress...
Instead of traditional federal tort reform, he proposes "private contractual agreements between physicians and patients" that "enables patients to protect themselves with 'negative outcomes' insurance purchased before medical treatment."


This statement of him advocating tort reform seems false or at least misleading. Hence I will edit it out from the page.

— Preceding unsigned comment added by Eydaimon (talkcontribs) 06:28, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

Excessive citation

Is there any reason to have a sentance end with three citations?John Pack Lambert (talk) 08:23, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Sometimes. Which sentence? Fat&Happy (talk) 18:17, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
WP:OVERCITE discusses excessive citation. Which sentences are problematic in this particular article?Dezastru (talk) 19:15, 22 February 2012 (UTC)

Splitting article

Is there any part of the article that could be split off? I am wondering if we could maybe provide a brief summary on his antagonism to the fed, monetary inflation and then make a new article entitled "Ron Paul's Economic phylosophy". I might try to do that tomorrow if no one objects in the meantime.John Pack Lambert (talk) 07:41, 10 March 2012 (UTC)