Mr. Murdoch explains

I just remembered I haven’t said anything about Rupert Murdoch in a while. Then I saw this in the New York Times:

On Nov. 3, [New Jersey Gov. Chris] Christie called Rupert Murdoch, the influential News Corporation chief and would-be kingmaker, who had warned in a biting post on Twitter that the governor might be responsible for Mr. Obama’s re-election.

Mr. Christie told Mr. Murdoch that amid the devastation, New Jersey needed friends, no matter their political party, according to people briefed on the discussion. But Mr. Murdoch was blunt: Mr. Christie risked looking like a spoiler unless he publicly affirmed his support for Mitt Romney, something the governor did the next day.

Because, really, what’s more important: doing all you can to help your state recover from a natural disaster, or getting your butt in line to show unconditional support for the guy who believes that the agency dealing with disaster recovery should be abolished?

Then I saw this on Twitter:Because you know who runs the media? Not Rupert, no sir.

Apologies ensue on that last item. I guess since Rupert (through his “news” network) already insults blacks and Hispanics and gays and women and the poor and young people and liberals, he doesn’t want to go overboard and be called anti-Semitic.

Let’s see where Fox News goes next.

Foreign policy debate failures

A couple of thoughts on the presidential debate on foreign policy:

1) For the two candidates to discuss foreign affairs and never mention the European financial crisis and the possible collapse of the euro zone was completely irresponsible. That is the moderator’s fault, but at some point someone should have said:

“You know, we’re wringing our hands on Iran and Afghanistan. We’re upset with China. We’re giving our stock answers on Israel, but if the the euro falls apart, we’re going to go into a recession that’s going to make the past five years look like boom times. So we should be focusing on that very real possibility and stop spewing on these side issues.”

But no one did.

2) If Mitt Romney was going to agree with everything President Obama was doing, why bother having a debate. The only time Romney came up with an original thought was when he referred to the Navy and 1916. And Obama completely sunk his battleship with his answer:

Of course, Sean Hannity, the Borg queen over at Fox News, has a retort:

“Some of our troops rode horses in Afghanistan and the Marines still carry bayonets. Maybe someone should tell the President how the military actually works.”

Given that when Hannity speaks, the Borg collective reacts, expect to hear this bit of stupidity in the days to come.

Ron Paul isn’t a racist, homophobic anti-Semite … to a point

Here’s a bizarre column from a former Ron Paul staffer named Eric Dondero. According to his bio box, he’s:

Fmr. Senior Aide, US Cong. Ron Paul, 1997 – 2003
Campaign Coordinator, Ron Paul for Congress, 1995/96
National Organizer, Draft Ron Paul for President, 1991/92
Travel Aide/Personal Asst. Ron Paul, Libertarian for President
1987/88

And he’s defending the Texas congressman. Imagine if he was trying to stab him in the back:

Is Ron Paul a “racist.” In short, No. I worked for the man for 12 years, pretty consistently. I never heard a racist word expressed towards Blacks or Jews come out of his mouth. Not once. And understand, I was his close personal assistant. It’s safe to say that I was with him on the campaign trail more than any other individual, whether it be traveling to Fairbanks, Alaska or Boston, Massachusetts in the presidential race, or across the congressional district to San Antonio or Corpus Christi, Texas.

He has frequently hired blacks for his office staff, starting as early as 1988 for the Libertarian campaign. He has also hired many Hispanics, including his current District staffer Dianna Gilbert-Kile.

One caveat: He is what I would describe as “out of touch,” with both Hispanic and Black culture. Ron is far from being the hippest guy around. He is completely clueless when it comes to Hispanic and Black culture, particularly Mexican-American culture. And he is most certainly intolerant of Spanish and those who speak strictly Spanish in his presence, (as are a number of Americans, nothing out of the ordinary here.)

Is Ron Paul an Anti-Semite? Absolutely No. As a Jew, (half on my mother’s side), I can categorically say that I never heard anything out of his mouth, in hundreds of speeches I listened too over the years, or in my personal presence that could be called, “Anti-Semite.” No slurs. No derogatory remarks.

He is however, most certainly Anti-Israel, and Anti-Israeli in general. He wishes the Israeli state did not exist at all. He expressed this to me numerous times in our private conversations. His view is that Israel is more trouble than it is worth, specifically to the America taxpayer. He sides with the Palestinians, and supports their calls for the abolishment of the Jewish state, and the return of Israel, all of it, to the Arabs.

Again, American Jews, Ron Paul has no problem with. In fact, there were a few Jews in our congressional district, and Ron befriended them with the specific intent of winning their support for our campaign. (One synagogue in Victoria, and tiny one in Wharton headed by a well-known Jewish lawyer).

On the incident that’s being talked about in some blog media about the campaign manager directing me to a press conference of our opponent Lefty Morris in Victoria to push back on Anti-Jewish charges from the Morris campaign, yes, that did happen. The Victoria Advocate described the press conference very accurately. Yes, I was asked (not forced), to attend the conference dressed in a Jewish yarlmuke, and other Jewish adornments.

There was another incident when Ron finally agreed to a meeting with Houston Jewish Young Republicans at the Freeport office. He berated them, and even shouted at one point, over their un-flinching support for Israel. So, much so, that the 6 of them walked out of the office. I was left chasing them down the hallway apologizing for my boss.

Is Ron Paul a homo-phobe? Well, yes and no. He is not all bigoted towards homosexuals. He supports their rights to do whatever they please in their private lives. He is however, personally uncomfortable around homosexuals, no different from a lot of older folks of his era.

There were two incidents that I will cite, for the record. One that involved me directly, and another that involved another congressional staffer or two.

(I am revealing this for the very first time, and I’m sure Jim Peron will be quite surprised to learn this.)

In 1988, Ron had a hardcore Libertarian supporter, Jim Peron, Owner of Laissez Faire Books in San Francisco. Jim set up a magnificent 3-day campaign swing for us in the SF Bay Area. Jim was what you would call very openly Gay. But Ron thought the world of him. For 3 days we had a great time trouncing from one campaign event to another with Jim’s Gay lover. The atmosphere was simply jovial between the four of us. (As an aside we also met former Cong. Pete McCloskey during this campaign trip.) We used Jim’s home/office as a “base.” Ron pulled me aside the first time we went there, and specifically instructed me to find an excuse to excuse him to a local fast food restaurant so that he could use the bathroom. He told me very clearly, that although he liked Jim, he did not wish to use his bathroom facilities. I chided him a bit, but he sternly reacted, as he often did to me, Eric, just do what I say. Perhaps “sternly” is an understatement. Ron looked at me directly, and with a very angry look in his eye, and shouted under his breath: “Just do what I say NOW.”

The second incident involved one or two other staffers many years later at the BBQ in Surfside Beach. I was not in direct presence of the incident. But another top staffer, and I believe one of our secretaries, was witnessed to it. This top staffer adores Ron, but was extremely insulted by his behavior, I would even say flabbergasted to the point of considering resigning from his staff over it.

“Bobby,” a well-known and rather flamboyant and well-liked gay man in Freeport came to the BBQ. Let me stress Ron likes Bobby personally, and Bobby was a hardcore campaign supporter. But after his speech, at the Surfside pavilion Bobby came up to Ron with his hand extended, and according to my fellow staffer, Ron literally swatted his hand away.

Again, let me stress. I would not categorize that as “homo-phobic,” but rather just unsettled by being around gays personally. Ron, like many folks his age, very much supports toleration, but chooses not to be around gays on a personal level. It’s a personal choice. And though, it may seem offensive to some, he has every right in my mind to feel and act that way.

It goes on like this.

Seems it’s time to just give the nomination to Romney already.