COMMENTARY | Less than two weeks remain before the Jan. 3 Iowa caucuses. On Wednesday an Iowa State University/Gazette/KCRG poll showed Texas Rep. Ron Paul leading the GOP presidential race with 27.5 percent. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich placed second with 25.3 percent followed by former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney with 17.5 percent.
Like the Tin Man from the Wizard of Oz, Ron Paul is seen by many as a quirky but well-meaning fellow who -- aside from having a few odd-ball ideas -- poses no real threat to the world. However, where a Tin Man in search of a heart may be seen as endearing, when a man who is vacant of heart and the capacity to feel compassion for his fellow man is determined to be the leader of the free world it becomes nothing less than dangerous.
It is said that we are known by the company we keep. Paul's 30-year friendship and frequent guest interviews by radio talk show host and rabid fellow conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and his comfort in feeding the suspicious minds of the youthful Student Scholars for 9/11 Truth that Americans are responsible for 9-11 are already a matter of record. Still, where Paul's long-term preference to associate himself with people of irrational mind demonstrates a connate history of obsessive paranoia and loathing for his country, more disturbing is his utter lack of compassion for the suffering of others in the world.
As quoted by Real Clear Politics, Ron Paul believes that "all foreign aid is worthless."
Ambassador Eric Goosby, M.D., who oversees implementation of the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), believes otherwise.
In his remarks during his Dec. 13 speech, in honor of Dr. David Barmes before "fellow laborers in the fight against AIDS," the United States Global AIDS Coordinator said "a Stanford University study demonstrated that over a million deaths were averted in the first 4 years of PEPFAR alone, a number we expect has at least doubled since that time."
As stated in his profile of the official PEPFAR website Goosby has "longstanding working relationships with leading multilateral organizations" like the Global Fund.
"As of December," Global Fund states on their website, their efforts "save an estimated 100,000 lives every month."
Were it left to Ron Paul, rather than funding the "worthless" efforts that save thousands of lives, America would hoard its money and simply "export maybe some principles about free markets and sound money and maybe they can produce some of their own wealth."
Paul also appears to have a cowardly closeted racist streak and, when pressed during an interview on Wednesday with CNN Chief Political Analyst Gloria Borger regarding some controversial newsletters printed in the 1980s and 1990s under his name, Paul became irritated to a point of removing his mic and walking out on the interview.
Among the many racially charged comments attributed to Paul in the publications was a 1992 statement that: "Order was only restored in L.A. when it came time for the blacks to pick up their welfare checks."
"I never read that stuff," Paul told Borger, oddly reminiscent of Obama's excuse reported by CNN in 2008 that - while sitting in the pew of Jeremiah Wright's church for 20 years -- he never heard the rancid litany of anti America remarks escaping the pastor's mouth.
Still, the most unsettling evidence regarding the warped mind of Ron Paul was revealed -- yet widely overlooked -- by Paul himself during November's Thanksgiving Forum Debate in Des Moines, Iowa.
When the candidates were asked by pollster-moderator Frank Luntz to identify a "failure" in their life from which they learned lessons that would make them a "better president," Paul had a profoundly alarming answer.
"To find one thing where I really goofed it or I had to suffer through it," Paul explained, "it's almost arrogant to think I can't find any one thing."
In other words -- aside from such "incidental" things as hating to watch himself on T.V. because all he can see are his "imperfections" and his lament in losing what he believed was his potential during his teenaged years in having "pretty darn good career in athletics, particularly in track and maybe football and maybe even baseball," were it not for "some severe injuries" - Paul truly believes that he is otherwise perfect.
When someone who has lived for nearly 70 years can say with absolute conviction that they've not made a single mistake it is safe for others to label them as certifiably delusional. For others to place someone with that level of specious conceit in the White House is nothing less than dangerous.