Ron Paul, whose dedicated cadre of conspiracy theorists, racists, and assorted extremists has amused us all the last couple of elections, still thinks he's living in the 18th Century.
He hasn't gotten the memo that Hitler invaded Poland and nearly conquered the world because Neville Chamberlain had essentially the same view of international relations as Ron Paul does today.
Paul- the social liberal who believes that the U.S., rather than Al Qaeda, was the bad guy on 9/11 and whose bizarre economic theories bemuse conservative and liberal alike- actually defends Russia's effective conquest of the Crimea through a rigged and constitutionally illegal plebiscite, using the same discredited arguments the South used when it tried to illegally secede from the Union.
The irony is that Paul insist that he's a constitutionalist. Strange that he has such little regard for the constitution of the Ukraine- or for international law. Or, for that matter, for the rights of Crimeans who want to remain part of the Ukraine and who have been ruthlessly repressed by Putin's occupying troops and local goons in sympathy with him.
There is a strange sort of consistency in Paul's position, though. The unconstitutional character of Southern secession aside (the Constitution made no provision whatsoever for a state to secede from the Union), in no case did any Southern state show the most basic respect for the rights of dissenters when the Great Treason of 1861 began, or attempt to secede through a process that would have passed the most minimal of muster from the point of view of democracy and the right of self-determination even if it had been legal.
And it wasn't. While the Constitution may have been silent on the issue, the basic principles of American law are not. Even a voluntary contract- and the Union is at the very least that- requires the consent of all parties for it to be dissolved and certain parties to legitimately renounce its obligations under it. The only remotely legal way for secession to have been accomplished would have been through the unanimous consent of a convention of all the states called to consider the matter.
Even one dissenting state would have left the South bound in law to respect the terms of the contract it freely entered into.
In no case where Southern referenda on secession were held was the secret ballot used, and brave enough to vote against secession were generally harassed, had their property destroyed, and were often lynched. Where secession was undertaken by convention, the delegates who voted to secede were often elected on a promise to vote against secession. A large and active resistance movement existed throughout the Confederacy from the very beginning- and it is by no means completely clear that a majority of the white population in a single Southern state actually favored secession, or would have chosen it if given a free choice!
In the South in 1861, as in the Crimea today, dissent is being suppressed. The rich got their way through a rigged and illegal process- and the clueless Mr. Paul to the contrary, the right of self-determination is being squelched, not respected.
The Ron Pauls of this world- the priest and the Levite who pass by the Samaritan in the ditch- reply, "Who cares?"
Shame on you, Ron Paul. It's people like you who make conservatives appear heartless and mindless. And given your positions on social issues, you ought to be a pariah to Christian conservatives in particular.
HT: Drudge Report