Thursday, December 27, 2007

Paul and LaRouche: Cults?

Twenty five years ago a buddy and I were walking through Houston Hobby airport when he spotted the LaRouche table (back then his vehicle was the "U.S Labor Party") and walked up to them. "OK, what's your theory on who killed JFK?" he asked.
"We don't have a theory. We know."

Ron Paul and his supporters seem cut from the same cloth. Dr. Paul has no doubts, no nuance. All that is wrong with America can be fixed if we just follow the Constitution. The abortion debate disappears when the states are allowed to decide it. Our economic problems are solved when we return to the gold standard. There really are simple solutions to complex issues. And Ron Paul is the LAST chance to save America.

Or so it seems from reading Dr.Paul's supporters on the web. Whether gold standard monetarists, 9 11 truthers, white supremacists, or his more sane supporters, all have a certainty that few other campaigns can match. What's interesting about the Paul cult is its inclusiveness. This is a big tent party. LaRouche was a Stalinist; his campaigns were a cult of personality with a fixed ideology. Everyone drank the same Kool aid and followed the Dear Leader. Paul is more like a Unitarian New Age cult. There is room for different opinions; but only Ron Paul can save America.

The Paul campaign can't keep all its divergent groups together for long. And no one is quite as bitter as an ex cult member. But Paul's campaign may still give us another six months of cheap entertainment.

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