If you're reading this blog, then chances are that you find Paultards annoying. But how do you deal with a Paultard? How do you get them to shut up? How do you bring their idiocy and hypocrisy out in the open?
In order to understand how to deal with a Paultard, you need to understand the nature of what a Paultard isGenerally, the Paultard will make claims and warants are as vague and as abstract as possible, which is what I like to call "horoscope style debating." This means that their claims can't be tested or falsified, which also makes it so that their claims are completely meaningless. After all, how do you disprove a horoscope? Paultards may talk about personal accountability, but since they're also massive hypocrites, accountability doesn't really matter. Dealing with a Paultard is dealing with a phantom, a spirit. There's nothing to hold onto. In order to nail a Paultard, you really need to nail them down. Fix them to something concrete and tangible, and then youattack them. The Paultard will struggle. The Paultard will resist. Don't let him get away that easily.
In this series, "How to Nail a Paultard," we will discuss specific issues and arguments that you can nail the Paultards on. This will save you time and energy, since it will give you something clear and specific to focus on, rather than an abstract tangent. It will also make it harder for them to writhe and squirm, since it doesn't give them much room to lie and spin. This should come in handy every time you get annoyed by a particularly persistent Paultard, which should be often.
In part one in this series, we'll discuss the Rosa Parks Medal, which several of our readers have stated would be an effective strategy on dealing with the Paultards. The Rosa Parks incident is very cut and dry, very concise and to the point, and I recommend that you bring it up the next time you deal with a Paultard at the first opportunity. It's comes in handy for attacking Ron Paul and his army of Paultards on any of the following subjects:
- The fact that Ron Paul's rhetoric regarding the constitution is worthless.
- The fact that Ron Paul is willing to make speeches and votes on false pretenses.
- The fact that Ron Paul is incompetent and unwilling to engage in even the most basic of fact checking on extremely unpopular votes.
- The fact that Ron Paul is willing to make promises that he is unwilling to follow through on.
- The fact that Ron Paul has a over tendency to "cry wolf" and vote against things without even reading them, thus making his "nay" votes worthless in general.
- The fact that Paultards will accept anything that Ron Paul says as absolute truth, without reading it themselves
Basic background on the Rosa Parks Medal
In April of 1999, Congress held a vote on whether or not to award a Congressional Gold Medal to Rosa Parks. Congress was unanimously in favor of the award, with only one exception: Ron Paul. In order to justify his lone nay vote, Ron Paul delivered a speech, where he made the following arguments:
- That the medal was tax-payer funded, and that we should look for alternative sources for funding.
- That the medal was was unconstitutional
- That the medal goes against the spirit of Rosa Parks.
Point #1: Was the medal against the spirit of Rosa Parks?
We already knew that Ron Paul deludes himself into believing that he can speak on behalf of the long dead founding fathers, but apparently, Ron Paul also seems to think that he can speak for people who were still alive at the time. Here's what Rosa Parks, the real Rosa Parks, had to say on the subject:
"This medal is encouragement for all of us to continue until all have rights," said Parks, 86, during her brief remarks.I think that it's incredibly arrogant for Ron Paul to assume that he has a greater authority to speak on behalf of Rosa Parks than Rosa Parks herself, something that he has also done with Martin Luther King.
Point #2: Was the Medal Unconstitutional?
I dare anyone who says this to cite the specific passage within the constitution that prohibits the awarding of medals. They won't be able to do this, because there isn't one. At best, they can argue that the awarding of medals isn't "explicitly" endorsed in the constitution, which therefore makes it unconstitutional. Now, you could try arguing that it falls under sections like the necessary-and-propers clause, but that will only give them room to squirm. Instead, I would point out that Congressional Gold Medals have been around longer than the constitution itself, and have been given out ever since. Here's a brief history of some of the earliest awards:
- 1776 George Washington.
- 1777 Major General Horatio Gates
- 1779 Major Henry Lee
- 1781 Major General Nathaniel Greene
- 1787 John Paul Jones
- 1800 Captain Thomas Truxtun
Point #3: But those were military gold medals, not civilian!
Please let us know the exact passage in the constitution that says that congress can award medals to the military, but not to civilians. Oh wait -- it doesn't. If you're going to make an argument on constitutional grounds, then you need to be apply the constitution consistently. Unfortunately, there is nothing in the constitution that endorses or restricts either of these awards. Either both types of awards are constitutional, or both types of awards are unconstitutional. The first case disproves Ron Paul, and the second case is disproved by history. Which is it?
Point #4: Congressional Gold Medals Fall Under the Tenth Amendment!
Ah, the "states right" argument. It's bullshit. Are you honestly telling me that the authority of Congressional Gold Medals falls under the individual states? Do you even understand what the phrase congressional gold medal entails? Do you actually believe that when Captain Thomas Truxtun was awarded the congressional medal in 1800, that he received that award on behalf of the individual states, and not on behalf of all of congress?
Point #5: Even if the constitution doesn't prohibit it, the medal was still tax payer funded!
Wrong. The bill in question was only a few pages long, and would have taken less time to read then it would have taken for him to deliver his speech against it. If he didn't read it, then that's another example of Ron Paul incompetence. If he did read it, then he would have caught the following passage:
SEC. 3. DUPLICATE MEDALS. The Secretary may strike and sell duplicates in bronze of the gold medal struck pursuant to section 2, under such regulations as the Secretary may prescribe, and at a price sufficient to cover the costs thereof, including labor, materials, dies, use of machinery, and overhead expenses, and the cost of the gold medal.In other words, the money to pay for the medal would have come from the sale of replicas, and not from tax dollars.
SEC. 4. STATUS AS NATIONAL MEDALS. The medals struck pursuant to this Act are national medals for purposes of chapter 51 of title 31, United States Code.
SEC. 5. FUNDING. (a) AUTHORITY TO USE FUND AMOUNTS.--There is authorized to be charged against the United States Mint Public Enterprise Fund an amount not to exceed $30,000 to pay for the cost of the medals authorized by this Act. (b) PROCEEDS OF SALE.--Amounts received from the sale of duplicate bronze medals under section 3 shall be deposited in the United States Mint Public Enterprise Fund. 113 Stat. 50-51
Point #6: Is there any evidence that a medal was ever created?
Yes, there was. In fact, you can still order a replica online from the US Mint for $38. Of course, this is another attempt to twist and squirm, since Ron Paul never opposed the bill on the basis that they would be unable to live up to section three.
Point #7: But what if they couldn't sell enough replicas to cover the cost?
Another attempt to twist and squirm, because Ron Paul never opposed the medal on the basis that he didn't think that the replicas wouldn't be popular enough to cover costs. Which is a silly argument to begin with, because why should profitability be our main criterion for whether or not we honor an American hero?
Point #8: But the first medal was still tax payer funded!
Wrong. From the US Mint Homepage:
Since Congress created the United States Mint on April 2, 1792, it has grown tremendously. The United States Mint receives more than $1 billion in annual revenues. As a self-funded agency, the United States Mint turns revenues beyond its operating expenses over to the General Fund of the Treasury.What part of "self-funded agency" do Paultards not understand? The US Mint has been around since the time of our founding fathers, and not are they non-tax payer funded, but they also turn over a surplus that provides an additional source of revenue (which would actually save money in the long run.). They make over a billion dollars per year, from the sale of coins and medals, which is enough to cover the cost of the Rosa Parks medal 33,333 times over. Far from being a waste of money, the popularity of the Rosa Parks Medal would have likely been very profitable for the US Mint. I think they've been around long enough and made enough in sales to know what they can and can't make money from.
So no, the medal wouldn't have been tax payer funded. The initial cost would have been funded from the sale of previous products, and the revenue from the duplicates would be used to fund more congressional medals in the future. That's sort of how the US Mint works, which I was able to figure out after two minutes on google. I would hope that Ron Paul, a congressman hoping to run for President based on his knowledge of economic policy, would be aware of US Mint.
Point #9: But the sale of congressional gold medals is unprofitable!
This line comes from an article by Joelle Cannon, a congressional staffer. The article reads as follows:
As of September 11, 2006, gold’s closing price was around $590.40. According to the Treasury, each Congressional Gold Medal contains 14.5 troy ounces or 16 regular ounces of gold. Thus, the gold in a medal minted today is worth roughly $9,446.40. As stated below, the CBO estimates the cost of the bill to be $35,000. Sales of most duplicate medals are not strong enough to offset the cost of the gold medal (source: http://goldprice.org/gold-price.html).Sound pretty damning, huh? Few problems. First off, the article isn't written in response to the Rosa Parks medals. It was written in response to a congressional medal for Dr. Norman E. Borlaug, who I'm sure that most people have never even heard of, so it's hardly surprising that his medal would have been unprofitable. And since the proposal never made it past the opening introductions, it's irrelevant. Fortunately, I'm pretty sure that Rosa Parks is a tad bit more well known, and would have slightly better sales. Moreover, this claim on insufficient isn't warranted or qualified in anyway:
- The source provided doesn't actually support the main claim on profitability, it only supports the claim that gold is expensive. And why is a congressional staffer citing goldprices.org anyway? Shouldn't they be citing something more official?
- In April of 1999, the cost of gold was roughly $280-$285, less than half of the 2006 figure cited in the article. So even if a Congressional Gold Medal wouldn't be profitable today, that doesn't mean that it wouldn't be profitable in 1999.
- No numbers are provided to back up the claim. Examples, "In the past 50 years, duplicates only pull in an average of X dollars in profit per medal, while the medals themselves have cost Y dollars produced, using constant dollars that were adjusted for inflation."
- There is a fallacy in assuming that just because some or even most congressional medals are unpopular, they must all be unprofitable, or even unprofitable as a whole. This is a faulty assumption. Along the same lines, most movies have traditionally been unprofitable, when you factor in the costs of marketing and productions. However, the movies that did pull in a profit were so profitable that they were able to make up for the difference.
Point #10: But if the US Mint is a source of revenue, then any loss in revenue would have to be made up for in tax dollars!
This is a really, really, really stupid attempt to twist and squirm, and again, not the argument that Ron Paul was making. You can't equate a potential loss of additional revenue with direct tax payer funding. This argument is such an incredible stretch that it's hard to come up with a sensible analog. The best I can come up with is a person who spends $1000 on a new computer, assuming that the productivity gains from the new computer will pay for itself in the long run, and someone else insisting that the purchase on the new computer represents an unfair waste of tax payer money, because the person who spends $1000 on a new computer will have less money to donate to the his son's high school school and the school will have to make up for the funds in elsewhere. Huh? And of course, this is only assuming that the Rosa Parks medal is a complete failure and pulls in zero dollars of revenue, which is entirely baseless.
Point #9: But Ron Paul said it was tax payer funded!
Well, it wasn't. Read the bill for yourself. Either Ron Paul is lying, or he's incompetent.
Point #10: Ron Paul volunteered to donate $100 of his own money to the medal!
Well, then he lied, because he didn't. This speaks wonders on Ron Paul's ability to live up to his own promises. He got his wish, the medal wasn't tax payer funded, and it would be paid for by private donations (through the sale of replicas.). Unfortunately, there is no evidence that Ron Paul ever followed through on this promise, not even from Ron Paul himself, even though he's had ample opprotunity to bring it up. Hell, remember that $500 that he received from Don Black a few months ago, which Ron Paul refused to return? Ron Paul could have purchased 13 bronze medals with that money. Why didn't he? He had the cash, he didn't need it, and it would have shown that he was sincere in his rejection of Neo-Nazi support and his praise of Rosa Parks. Instead, I supposed that Ron Paul figured that the money would be better spent on more important things, like turning uppity Negroes into living billboards.
Point #11: Ron Paul never promised to donate to a duplicate, he only promised to donate if other congressmen did!!
So in other words... Ron Paul was only willing to donate to charity if it was mandatory for all congressmen? And not from the kindness of his heart? That's not the libertarian rhetoric I've heard regarding private charity in the past. But I forgot -- most libertarians are raging hypocrites. They like to talk about private charity all right, but actually contributing is another matter.
Point #12: But Ron Paul also voted aginst the medals for Ronald Reagan, the Tony Blair, and Frank Sinatra!
Yeah, so? Ron Paul has called Ronald Reagan a complete failure, and he's called Tony Blaire a pinko commie. And while Frank Sinatra might be a great guy, I don't think he's quite at the level of Rosa Parks.
Point #13: The point is that Ron Paul is consistent!
No he's not. In December of 2001, Ron Paul actually attempted to introduce legislation to congressional medals to every veteran of the cold war:
Sec. 1134. Cold War medal: awardEstimated cost: $240,000,000. Enough to pay for the Rosa Parks Gold medal 8,000 with 8,000 different designs. And unlike the Rosa Parks medal, these medals medals actually would have been tax payer funded.
`(a) AWARD- There is hereby authorized an award of an appropriate decoration, as provided for under subsection (b), to each person who served honorably in the armed forces during the Cold War in order to recognize the contributions of those person to United States victory in the Cold War.
`(b) DESIGN- The Secretary of Defense, in designing the decoration for the purposes of this section, shall consult with appropriate organizations and entities, including veterans' organizations. The decoration shall be of appropriate design, with ribbons and appurtenances.
`(c) CHARGE- The Secretary of Defense shall furnish the decoration under this section subject to the payment of an amount sufficient to cover the cost of production of the decoration and of the administration of this section.
`(d) PERIOD OF COLD WAR- In this section, the term `Cold War' means the period beginning on September 2, 1945, and ending on December 26, 1991.'
Point #14: But the cold war veterans were more deserving than Rosa Parks!
Really? The one that was won without a single shot being fired? That cold war? I'm not going to say that Rosa Parks put herself in more danger than all of them, but I am willing to say that she probably put herself in more danger than at least some of them. Mind you, it's not like soldiers serve entirely for free, and without compensation. They get money and training for the time they spend in the military, as well as plenty of other benefits. Rosa Parks? Not so much.
Point #15: Is any of this really important?
Well, it proves that Ron Paul is a liar, a hypocrite, and generally incompetent. So... yes. It also sets the backdrop for any future debate. Unfortunately, most Paultards have a habit of falling back on an Appeal to Ron Paul fallacy, where they assume that Ron Paul is honest and infallible and therefore we should always assume that whatever he says must automatically be true.
Point #16: But it's such a minor and insignificant point!
Then you should have no problem conceding it. Unfortunately, if you can't even concede on a "minor point" even when you're completely and utterly wrong, then you concede to the fact that you're completely incapable of rational/open minded debate. And if you're incapable of rational/open minded debate, then there's no point in going any further, with more abstract/general matters that would give you more room to twist and squirm and generally avoid accountability. On the other hand, if you refuse to concede because you think that you're right, then you should be willing to present an actual argument, rather than attempting to change the subject.
Sorry for the long post, but I wanted to be thorough. That's how you nail a Paultard, folks, but you have to stay firm and stand your ground. Don't let them evade, and don't let them change the subject until they've managed to settle the subject at hand. The goal is to stay as specific and as concrete as possible.
Link to this Article