Positive Outgrowth of Ron Paul Campaign?

This looks extremely interesting.  Ron Pauls supporters span the gamut, from conspiracy theorists and white supremacists to frustrated libertarians and conservatives of conscience.  There is a range of desperation and genuine creativity and commitment behind the small but vocal movement.  I’ve kept an eye on it mainly watching a man push a conservative and sometimes extremist agenda with a very slick packaging into the mainstream.

But the commitment of his supporters is, in a word, powerful.  So we on the left should pay attention to items like this:

We’re starting our own grassroots media company. Basic Media, Inc. (in formation) will create, build and connect Internet based radio and television outlets for freedom voices and faces around the United States and worldwide. The newly forming company will develop a wide ranging array of interesting and entertaining content on the web, and transmit our shows to mainstream “off the Internet” people through a variety of communications technologies and strategies.

Very, very interesting.  From the sounds of things, such an initiative would push ideas and ideals that are both laudable and laughable:

As Dr. Paul himself said so well on February 9, 2008: “The neocons, the warmongers, the socialists, the advocates of inflation will be hearing much from you and me.” Indeed. The tired, empty mantras of “right and left,” of “conservative and liberal,” of “Democrat and Republican,” will no longer stand unchallenged in our mainstream media outlets. Freedom, prosperity, peace, hope—the great ideas are coming to America.

Regardless of whether you agree with their message, the idea of combining networked content creation and off the internet delivery is brilliant:

The core technologies are already in place for high quality content creation and delivery on the web, and Basic Media, Inc. will take this process to the next higher level with syndication and delivery platform strategies that carry our message to the radios and television sets of every household in America. Break the monopoly of the establishment media! Break the wall of silence that stifles voices of truth in our nation!

I’m simultaneously cringing and excited for what kind of content could come out of this.  Overall, I think it is a bold effort and one to support and duplicate.  For one, it is a familiar cry, similar to Nader’s “We own the airwaves” approach to media.  But the main reason is that the netroots can combine a strong ability to raise funds and create smart content rapidly to follow this same path.  We can reach more people than we currently do.

If this movement runs into issues of censorship from either the media conglomerates or the government, we ought to be in the trenches with them fighting back.  Not simply because we can find common ground on some points (their anti-war stance), but because the larger issue of the media monopoly on our national conversation is too strong for either of us to break alone.

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12 Responses

  1. The media does not exercise overt censorship, so it is difficult to detect. Their influence and bias is pervasive, systematic, and extremely powerful. They are the gate-keepers for information flow. People only see what is green-lighted.

    As far as the government censoring political speech, I would welcome the 1st Amendment challenge anytime, anywhere.

  2. Wow, I never thought you’d post something positive about that. Is it that you see the wisdom of the message or that you are so disheartened by the choices you have for president that the message finally sunk in? Regardless of who is slinging the mud about Ron Paul his message is resonating. Good for us (we the people) when extreme liberals see the light.

  3. Johnny, it is a very subtle (and hence successful censorship). The same goes for when the government sets up roadblocks. Sometimes they are not obvious to everyone. For example, the FCC’s approval of increasing consolidation amongst media companies. This gives the media conglomerates more power.

    Michael D,
    I’m good with Obama as a choice. This isn’t at all about Ron Paul, or his very mixed message, but rather, a good idea some of his supporters have had. I think using the ability of the internet community to raise money and create media to break into a larger media market is a great idea.

    I can see a strong possibility of roadblocks being shoved in front of it though, and I think that we ought to be united in tackling those roadblocks.

  4. Mostly, it just sounds like LaRouche is going to have some competition in who can publish loonier stuff and annoy more people on the corner.

  5. The war and the loss of our civil liberties are the worst things that are happening right now. If this Basic Media, Inc. can somehow get through to the average, brainwashed voter we should all support them. Who is behind this effort anyway? As long as it’s not the major corporations, I’m good with it.

  6. Um this comment “Ron Pauls supporters span the gamut, from conspiracy theorists and white supremacists to frustrated libertarians and conservatives of conscience” is insane. I hardly doubt that ONE guy, that NO ONE KNOWS, who is puported to be a white supremacist could be the qualification that makes that subset considered ‘supporters’.

    Hillary and McCain, by virtue of the numbers must have plenty too. We know they have the Latino gangs and black supremacists support Obama…and Hillary as well. So, one guy does not make this something even worth mentioning unless you are going to say Hillary’s supporters span the gamut of lesbians, gays, latino gangs, communists and street people…

  7. Let’s see now… I’m an old Korean War Vet. (Do your remember that rather bloody “Police Action” ordered by the UN ? — uh, our troops are still there protecting Japan). Anyhow, let’s see… I’m not a conspiracy theorist, nor a white supremacist nor a frustrated libertarian nor a conservative of conscience (whatever that might be). Hey, looks like I don’t fit any of your categories in order to be a Ron Paul supporter. Ah well, what the heck, I know you will forgive me if I vote for him.

  8. MB, Hopefully not.

    Marie, It looks like its just some Ron Paul supporters behind it. I’ll keep an eye out for anything else. In terms of their goals, this could be amazing. If they focus on civil liberties especially (our growing police state, wiretapping, etc), that would be fantastic.

    NH,
    Has Obama given speeches to Black Supremacist groups? Does he have an “Obama Gazette” that says White people are more likely to commit crimes? What “one guy” are you even referring to in your comment? That speaks to Ron Paul as a candidate.

    As for his supporters: I’m not saying all Ron Paul supporters are like this. But he has an enthusiastic following among conspiracy theorists, and groups like stormfront, the kkk and the ccc. Again, not everybody, but something to acknowledge when looking at initiatives proposed from his supporters. Some people who like Ron Paul are, as I said, conservatives with a conscience and libertarians frustrated at not having an actual libertarian candidate. It is this latter group that appears to be behind the basic media push, hence my support for them. We don’t agree on everything, but the need to push the boundaries of alternative media is one area where we do. I drew the distinction I did partially to explain my wariness, and partially to set the stage for my readers, some of whom equate Ron Paul supporters with “teh crazies”. As this is not the case always (and here looks like a worthwhile cause), I felt it best to point that out.

    L. Step,
    I was outlining a basic range. Of course that could leave some people out, and my humble apologies for having missed you. If you don’t mind sharing your political background, you could help correct my ignorance on the matter.

  9. This may be a bad phrase considering Hillary’s derby choice to win but…

    I hate to whip a dead horse (election unfairness and inequalities) but I believe this needs to be addressed. After they made a sham out of the Nevada <a href= “http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/04/27/nev-gop-recesses-state-co_n_98868.html”process after 10 hours they said there wasn’t enough time.

  10. Dan,
    We don`t need or want you opinion.It is so obvious that you are one of them,it`s laughable.
    Please! tell me,who do you want to lead our country? Who is it that you feel has our children`s future in mind?
    Who do you think will strive to make the US DOLLAR strong again,or,has your choice even mentioned a “Sound Dollar”?
    Tell me,how many children are you willing to send to war?Of you own,that is.
    Take a hike..Creep.

  11. Michael D,
    By doing so, the GOP is only alienating their own potential supporters. Bad move.

    Jerry Alexander,
    “One of them?”. Don’t make me laugh. Did you bother to read my blog? I am fully against the war. Do not assume off the bat that someone who doesn’t support Ron Paul is an enemy rather than an ally, and try to moderate the amount of platitudes you spout. I mean seriously. You all but said “Won’t somebody think of the children?”.

    In any case, this post was about the efforts by some Paul supporters to tackle the problem of media bias they’ve complained stridently about. I think on the whole it is a move we should watch and support.

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