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January 9, 2008

Did The Ronulans Disappear Overnight?

A funny thing happened on my way to the predictable onslaught of Ron Paul supporters in my comments section after yesterday's post about his newsletters. The onslaught never arrived -- and neither did the supposed Revolution from New Hampshire. Could the two be related?

Almost like clockwork, any time a blogger posts anything remotely critical about Ron Paul, it attracts hundreds of comments, most of them refusing to deal with the substance of the criticism. Instead, they usually contained cap-locked diatribes about the Federal Reserve, the Constitution, and how anyone who doesn't support Paul is a traitor or a fool. Many start off by saying, "I am a Hispanic/Jewish/black voter who cares about freedom ..." as a means of defusing the awkward inks between Paul and his newsletters and donation from neo-Nazi Don Black, as well as his 40-plus appearances on the radio show of Truther and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones.

But not today. It's been more than 14 hours since I posted about the TNR story, and so far ... nothing. I really expected to find scores of outraged commentary in the Disqus moderation queue when I woke up this morning, but so far, it's been as quiet as a church mouse.

The results from Iowa and New Hampshire may have finally broken the spell. Paul's supporters had insisted that the Revolution would launch from Iowa and New Hampshire, but Paul only won marginal support. Even in Iowa, where he ran only against Mitt Romney and Fred Thompson -- and where his libertarianism should have won significant traction -- his campaigning left him without a single delegate to the convention. Last night's election put him behind Rudy Giuliani in fifth place, even though Giuliani didn't exactly strain himself with Granite State campaigning.

The Revolution turned out to be a dud. Even the writers at Reason now wonder what kind of crypto policy Paul may have been hiding, and Andrew Sullivan has (rather bravely) called out Paul for his association with the vile rhetoric published for over seventeen years under his own name.

The green curtain has been pulled back, I think, and rational minds have taken control. The comment sections will never be the same.

UPDATE, 5:19 PM: Guess who finally started showing up? Listen, when someone can explain how Ron Paul could have missed this stuff showing up in his own newsletters for 17 years while somehow also arguing that he's sharp enough to find his way out of a sweatshirt, then I'll consider concluding that he's blameless for the despicable garbage in these pamphlets.


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