I think the lesson we learned with Obama was that no matter what he says, you have to follow the money trail. Or at least I thought we'd learned it. But it seems we haven't. Ron Paul, the current favorite for progressives who focus mainly on his stance on war and libertarian darling for his stand on... all things libertarian (smaller gov't, getting rid of deregulation, etc.) has finally given accounting for his Super PAC financing. It seems Mr. Paul has a major backer as big as Newt Gingrich's sugar daddy. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the former PayPal owner Peter Thiel is the man behind the money. A conservative Christian, the billionaire is a hard-core unfettered government type who is also a proud supporter of gay rights. More importantly, however, his business ties should tell every Ron Paul supporter something about what is to come from a Paul presidency not matter what the radical libertarian says. In an article in The Nation, Mark Ames digs a little deeper into Thiel's pockets and reveals that his recent money making ventures (he founded a controversial defense contractor, Palantir Technologies, that profits from government espionage work for the CIA, FBI and other agencies) moves counter to Ron Paul's song and dance. While the backer has not yet influenced the Presidential hopeful's rhetoric in the political dance he's jigging to, one can safely assume that there will be a gentle reminder of that support once the man is in the proper place to present payback.
As I drive around our city, spotting the brazen Ron Paul yard paraphernalia I have to wonder, "do these people really know who he is or are they supporters who assume they know from the TV clips and internet links they click on?" If I were to judge from previous experience, they don't know and they won't know, because we look for what we want to see in the people we vote for and then are surprised when they present something counter to what we thought they stood for. You have to look at the money trail because those are the people who will have the ear to the power after the ballots are yesterday's news. So Ron Paul a CIA abolisher and War ender? I doubt it.