Cool-Ass Albino Alligator | Main | Special Ops Battle In Iraq
April 04, 2008

Ron Paul, True Believer

With apologies in advance for any Paulbots who show up, this was simply too good an opportunity to let pass. Low hanging fruit 'n' all. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has an article about Paul's campaign in Pennsylvania. It has plenty of quotes from worshipful Paulians, as if we needed more of that, but what caught my eye was the very end of the article:

Ron Paul and his people keep going on despite, or perhaps because of, what is a hopeless situation.

"If anyone's looked at what I've done for so many years, it's just sort of a steady determination," he said, when asked about his character. "I think if I should be compared to somebody, it might be called a true believer."

So my question is, does he mean this kind of true believer or that kind of true believer. The first describes a 1951 book on mass movements called "The True Believer" which remains in print today. Given the book's subject matter, I almost find it impossible to believe that Paul is not familiar with it:

The book evaluates and sometimes disparages Communists, Fascists, Nationalists, and early Christians. Part of Hoffer's thesis is that movements are interchangeable and that fanatics will often flip from one movement to another. Furthermore, Hoffer argues the motivations for mass movements are interchangeable: religious, nationalist and class-based movements tend to behave in the same way and use the same tactics, even when their stated goals or values are diametrically opposed.

One of the central theses of the book is that mass movements are made up of a group of people who have strong feelings of frustration directed at dominant majorities. These people are passionate about achieving a glorious future, which achieves such value in their minds that fundamental norms are occasionally dropped by the wayside for the greater good. A revolution indeed.

The second kind of true believer is described by Lamar Keene:

Keene used the term to refer to people who continued to believe in a paranormal event or phenomenon even after it had been proven to have been staged. It has since been applied, more loosely, to refer to any belief without empirical or logical foundations.

I think it's fair to say that either version works for Paul and his followers. Why is Paul still running? Why does he think that Republicans should work with him? And what does he plan to do when he finally drops out?

digg this
posted by Gabriel Malor at 02:48 PM

| Access Comments

Recent Comments
NaCly Dog: "Have a serene day, and bask in the winning. H ..."

NaCly Dog: "I got up early, so I'll start chores early. Snow ..."

not so: "WD is right about the porn thing. What person tha ..."

not so: "Funny is always good ..."

NaCly Dog: "Eromero Good morning. It was a grudge pregnanc ..."

Skip: "Beginning of the year at Reach Climbing Gym had a ..."

NaCly Dog: "Good morning! Let's smile and be happy & strik ..."

Eromero: "What a laugh. 'What's up, Red?' That right there i ..."

Skip: "BC - I see, betting you have the right to be angry ..."

NaCly Dog: "Skip My sister, on her first day at work, broke ..."

NaCly Dog: "Bitter Clinger We only have one Insomniac. You ..."

Skip: "Called our equipment/ material manager and he said ..."

Recent Entries

Polls! Polls! Polls!
Frequently Asked Questions
The (Almost) Complete Paul Anka Integrity Kick
Top Top Tens
Greatest Hitjobs

The Ace of Spades HQ Sex-for-Money Skankathon
A D&D Guide to the Democratic Candidates
Margaret Cho: Just Not Funny
More Margaret Cho Abuse
Margaret Cho: Still Not Funny
Iraqi Prisoner Claims He Was Raped... By Woman
Wonkette Announces "Morning Zoo" Format
John Kerry's "Plan" Causes Surrender of Moqtada al-Sadr's Militia
World Muslim Leaders Apologize for Nick Berg's Beheading
Michael Moore Goes on Lunchtime Manhattan Death-Spree
Milestone: Oliver Willis Posts 400th "Fake News Article" Referencing Britney Spears
Liberal Economists Rue a "New Decade of Greed"
Artificial Insouciance: Maureen Dowd's Word Processor Revolts Against Her Numbing Imbecility
Intelligence Officials Eye Blogs for Tips
They Done Found Us Out, Cletus: Intrepid Internet Detective Figures Out Our Master Plan
Shock: Josh Marshall Almost Mentions Sarin Discovery in Iraq
Leather-Clad Biker Freaks Terrorize Australian Town
When Clinton Was President, Torture Was Cool
What Wonkette Means When She Explains What Tina Brown Means
Wonkette's Stand-Up Act
Wankette HQ Gay-Rumors Du Jour
Here's What's Bugging Me: Goose and Slider
My Own Micah Wright Style Confession of Dishonesty
Outraged "Conservatives" React to the FMA
An On-Line Impression of Dennis Miller Having Sex with a Kodiak Bear
The Story the Rightwing Media Refuses to Report!
Our Lunch with David "Glengarry Glen Ross" Mamet
The House of Love: Paul Krugman
A Michael Moore Mystery (TM)
The Dowd-O-Matic!
Liberal Consistency and Other Myths
Kepler's Laws of Liberal Media Bias
John Kerry-- The Splunge! Candidate
"Divisive" Politics & "Attacks on Patriotism" (very long)
The Donkey ("The Raven" parody)
Powered by
Movable Type 2.64