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Category Archives: Ron Paul

Rockin’ the Riverfront in 1970: As Riverfront Stadium takes shape, so do the Bengals – The Cincinnati Enquirer

Posted: May 11, 2020 at 11:03 am

JULY 15, 1970: ...All-Stars At Riverfront Stadium.(Photo: Enquirer file)

While many considered Cincinnatis and Hamilton Countys commitment to building Riverfront Stadium crucial to keeping the Reds in Cincinnati, theres no doubt that the city would not have landed a National Football League franchise without it.

Still, the fledgling Bengals had to wait two years before playing in their new home. Of course, founder and coach Paul Brown used those two years wisely, transforming the team from a collection of other teams castoff veterans to a roster full of young, vibrant talent.

The teams first season, 1968, featured running back Paul Robinson. The Arizona product, known as "The Cactus Comet,"led the American Football League in rushing attempts, yards and touchdowns on his way to being named Rookie of the Year and helping the Bengals go 3-11.

DECEMBER 20, 1970: Proud players carried Paul Brown off the field after the last game at Riverfront Stadium when the Bengals beat the Boston Patriots for the AFL Central title.(Photo: The Enquirer/Allan Kain)

If picking Robinson in the third round of his first Bengals draft was impressive, Browns first-round pick in 1969 was nothing short of inspired. Picking fifth, he pounced on record-setting University of Cincinnati quarterback Greg Cook, a charismatic, 6-foot-4, 220-pound right-hander who had "prototype NFL quarterback"written all over him.

Cook was everything for which Brown hoped. Playing on the familiar playing surface of UCs Nippert Stadium, he threw for exactly 1,000 yards and seven touchdowns while leading the Bengals to season-opening wins over Miami, San Diego and a Kansas City team that would go on to win the Super Bowl.

1969: Riverfront Stadium, Cincinnati, Ohio.(Photo: The Enquirer/Fred Straub)

"He was just phenomenal,"recalled cornerback Ken "Rattler"Riley, a rookie that season. "He was an unbelievable football player. I was a quarterback coming out of high school. I could throw the ball and run, but Greg had all those tools. The best thing is he could throw the long ball. There just wasnt anybody like him until (Ken Anderson) came along.

"I know youve heard this from everybody, but he was just a phenomenal talent, said center Bob Johnson, the Tennessee product who owns the distinction of being Browns first-ever college draft pick with the Bengals. Big, strong, fast, accurate, touch he had everything."

While Johnson was among the legion of Cook admirers, he also wasnt alone in noticing the developing dynamic between the authoritative Brown and free-spirited Cook, who was among other things an aspiring artist.

"You have to wonder if Paul Brown and Greg Cook could have co-existed,"Johnson said. "They were not exactly the same kind of people."

JUNE 1970: Riverfront Stadium, downtown Cincinnati.(Photo: File)

"(Cook) drove (Brown) crazy, because he was so damn good,"said tight end Bob Trumpy, another emerging talent whod been named first-team all-league in his second season. "Wed never seen Greg in a pressure situation. I dont know how he would have responded. I do know that when he played at UC, he was in a bunch of pressure situations and handled it beautifully, but wed never been in a must-win situation with him, so there were a lot of parts of him that none of us really knew, but physically? Extraordinary."

Brown made another move to improve the offense by trading defensive linemen Bill Staley and Harry Gunner to the Chicago Bears for 6-5, 260-pound offensive tackle Rufus Mayes, whod played on Ohio States 1968 national championship team. Not only did that further solidify the offense, it also opened up spots on the defense for more talented players, holes Brown worked on filling through the draft.

That years 17-round session started on January 26, and Browns choice with the seventh overall pick was Maxwell Award-winning Penn State defensive tackle Mike Reid like Cook, a talented football player with an artistic side. The 6-3, 255-pounder leaned toward music, performing and writing.

"That was our first choice, even if we had drafted first,"Brown said.

The Bengals seemed to be Reids first choice, too.

"If Id had a choice, Cincinnati probably wouldve been the team Id take,"he told The Enquirer. "Ive been thinking a lot about it and consider it a team with a young organization on the upswing with a great coach the kind of team I like. Thats the Bengals."

Browns second pick was 6-4, 261-pound defensive tackle Ron Carpenter out of North Carolina State, who was expected to team with Reid to form a formidable inside defensive presence with 6-4, 243-pound middle linebacker Bill Bergey, Cincinnatis second pick behind Cook in the previous years draft. Bergey had been named by The Sporting News and the Associated Press as the AFL Defensive Rookie of the Year and played in the same AFL All-Star Game from which Trumpy was sent home with a fractured ankle.

Brown used 12 of Cincinnatis 17 picks on defense, including one that was somewhat overlooked at No. 6 defensive back Lemar Parrish out of Lincoln University in Missouri, who would make immediate, electrifying contributions.

"Weve done pretty much what we wanted to do,"Brown said. "We have some outstanding early selections, no doubt about it. When you get toward the end, youre not nearly as familiar with the players, but everyone is in the same boat. Every year, a few teams come up with some outstanding players in the late rounds. We took Bob Trumpy in the 12th round two years ago, and he was All-Pro this year."

The draft was one part of a busy day both for the Bengals and the NFL. Besides picking college players, Brown picked up free-agent punter Dave Lewis from the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League. Lewis, a Stanford product who would dabble at quarterback, would spend the next four seasons with the Bengals.

Meanwhile, NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle picked the first day of the draft to also finalize talks with television networks on a groundbreaking deal. He completed four-year deals with CBS and NBC to go along with the three-year, $7.5 million deal hed put together with newcomer ABC the previous June. The combined revenue from the three contracts was $130 million.

Monday Night Football was coming to the NFL.

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Rockin' the Riverfront in 1970: As Riverfront Stadium takes shape, so do the Bengals - The Cincinnati Enquirer

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Bitcoin to the Rescue as Ron Paul Says US Fed Fake Economy Has Burst – Cointelegraph

Posted: April 27, 2020 at 4:50 pm

The United States Federal Reserve fake economy has burst, former presidential candidate Ron Paul has announced as money printing takes its balance sheet to $6.6 trillion.

In a series of tweets on April 24, Paul became the latest critic to launch a scathing on U.S. economic policy present and past.

According to the pro-Bitcoin retired politician, neither coronavirus nor a brief uptick in stocks can hide the impact of the Feds actions. For him, Keynesian ideas such as market interventions and money printing are un-American.

The Fed's fake economy has burst. The stock market, even if it rises, cannot hide the damage that has been done. The virus, now known to be less deadly than the seasonal flu, cannot act as a legitimate excuse either, he wrote.

Another tweet read:

The un-American ideas of government micromanagement and Fed central planning of the economy have failed, and will continue to fail as long as they're clung to. The time to rebuild with the American ideas of liberty and sound money has arrived.

Pauls comments come as the Feds balance sheet reaches record highs of $6.6 trillion, purely due to money printing and associated economic bailout measures.

Federal Reserve balance sheet 14-year chart. Source: Holger Zschaepitz/ Twitter

As Cointelegraph reported, Raoul Pal, CEO of Global Macro Investor, this week released a dedicated 120-page report into the severity of the economic damage sparked by governments reaction to coronavirus.

The Baby Boomers are totally f*cked, a popular soundbite from the report, which champions Bitcoin, summarizes.

Meanwhile, the trader who called Bitcoin (BTC) topping at around $20,000 in 2017 has drawn comparisons to the stock markets of 2020 and 1930 just before the Great Depression hit with full force.

Comparing two Dow Jones charts, Peter Brandt argued that stocks current rise from last months crash merely echoes their behavior after the 1929 Wall Street Crash.

Sleep well tonight. We are all so lucky to be living in an age when Fed will bail us out, he sarcastically added in comments.

Dow Jones charts from 2020 and 1929-30. Source: Peter Brandt/ Twitter

The idea that money printing is ruinous in the long term has formed part of similar Fed criticism for almost a century.

The world is full of so-called economists who in turn are full of schemes for getting something for nothing, Henry Hazlitt wrote in his popular book, Economics in One Lesson, just a year after the Second World War.

They tell us that the government can spend and spend without taxing at all; that it can continue to pile up debt without ever paying it off, because we owe it to ourselves.

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Ron Paul Blasts Federal Reserve and Calls for Rebuilding the Economy; Time for Bitcoin? – CryptoGlobe

Posted: at 4:50 pm


Ron Paul Blasts Federal Reserve and Calls for Rebuilding the Economy; Time for Bitcoin?


Former U.S. Representative and Presidential candidate Ron Paul blasted the Feds money-printing policies in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

In a series of tweets, Paul denounced the Federal Reserves money-printing tactics which took the U.S. balance sheet over $6.6 trillion.

The former U.S. Representative of Texas said the Feds fake economy had burst and claimed even a rally in the stock market would not be able to mask the damage already done. Paul also warned against politicians using the coronavirus, which he said has proven to be less deadly than the seasonal flu, as an excuse for the fiscally irresponsible behavior.

Paul continued, calling the Feds policies un-American and claimed the central banks micromanagement of the economy had failed. He argued for a total rebuild of the U.S. economy and its governing body in the image of American ideas of liberty and sound money practices.

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Ron Paul Blasts Federal Reserve and Calls for Rebuilding the Economy; Time for Bitcoin? - CryptoGlobe

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Posted: at 4:49 pm


Paul N. Cangiano Center Township Paul N. Cangiano, 90, of Center Township, passed away after a brief illness on April 18, 2020, at Beaver Meadows. Born July 4, 1929, in Aliquippa, Pa., he was the son of the late Nicola and Mary Cangiano. He was also preceded in death by his wife, Caroline Cangiano; a sister, Frances Swan; and two brothers, Frank and Ralph "Nick" Cangiano. Paul was a member of St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Church since its inception. He was also a member of the Holy Name Society where he was honored as "Man of the Year." Paul retired from J&L/LTV Steelworkers as a master electrician after 43 years. He honorably served our country in the U.S. Army during World War II. Paul was a kind and generous man. He enjoyed taking things apart and rebuilding them, and was an avid photographer. Paul is survived by his loving son, Joseph Paul Cangiano and Sandy Carroll; and a nephew, Ron Swan and Lisa Aloe. Due to Covid-19, visitation will be private. A Celebration of Life ceremony will be held at a later date. The family wishes to extend their deepest gratitude to the staff at Beaver Meadows and Good Samaritan Hospice for the care Paul received while he was a resident there. Arrangements were by ANTHONY MASTROFRANCESCO FUNERAL HOME INC., 2026 McMinn St., Aliquippa, 724-375-0496.

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What if the ‘cure’ is worse than the disease? – The Highland County Press

Posted: April 24, 2020 at 3:06 pm

By Dr. Ron PaulFormer CongressmanThe Ron Paul Institute

From California to New Jersey, Americans are protesting in the streets. They are demanding an end to house arrest orders given by government officials over a virus outbreak that even according to the latest U.S. government numbers will claim fewer lives than the seasonal flu outbreak of 2017-18.

Across the U.S., millions of businesses have been shut down by executive order and the unemployment rate has skyrocketed to levels not seen since the Great Depression. Americans, who have seen their real wages decline thanks to Federal Reserve monetary malpractice, are finding themselves thrust into poverty and standing in breadlines. It is like a horror movie, but its real.

Last week, the UN Secretary General warned that a global recession resulting from the worldwide coronavirus lockdown could cause hundreds of thousands of additional child deaths per year.

As of this writing, less than 170,000 have been reported to have died from the coronavirus worldwide.

Many Americans have also died this past month because they were not able to get the medical care they needed. Cancer treatments have been indefinitely postponed. Life-saving surgeries have been put off to make room for coronavirus cases. Meanwhile hospitals are laying off thousands because the expected coronavirus cases have not come and the hospitals are partially empty.

What if the cure is worse than the disease?

Countries like Sweden that did not lock down their economy and place the population under house arrest are faring no worse than countries that did. Swedens deaths-per-million from coronavirus is lower than in many lockdown countries.

Likewise, U.S. states that did not arrest citizens for merely walking on the beach are not doing worse than those that did. South Dakota governor Kristi Noem said last week, We've been able to keep our businesses open and allow people to take on some personal responsibility." South Dakota has recorded a total of seven coronavirus deaths.

Kentucky, a strict lockdown state, is five times more populated than South Dakota, yet it has some 20 times more coronavirus deaths. If lockdown and house arrest are the answer, shouldnt those numbers be reversed, with South Dakota seeing mass death while Kentucky dodges the coronavirus bullet?

When Dr. Anthony Fauci first warned that two million would die, there was a race among federal, state and local officials to see who could rip up the Constitution fastest. Then Fauci told us if we do what he says only a quarter of a million would die. They locked America down even harder. Then, with little more than a shrug of the shoulders, they announced that a maximum of 60,000 would die, but maybe less. That is certainly terrible, but its just a high-average flu season.

Imagine if we had used even a fraction of the resources spent to lock down the entire population and focused on providing assistance and protection to the most vulnerable the elderly and those with serious medical conditions. We could have protected these people and still had an economy to go back to when the virus had run its course. And it wouldnt have cost us $6 trillion, either.

Governments have no right or authority to tell us what business or other activity is essential. Only in totalitarian states does the government claim this authority. We should encourage all those who are standing up peacefully and demanding an accounting from their elected leaders. They should not be able to get away with this.

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What if the 'cure' is worse than the disease? - The Highland County Press

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What the Liberate Protests Really Mean for Republicans – The Atlantic

Posted: at 3:06 pm

Jordan is not one of the many members of Congress who have either contracted the coronavirus or had to self-quarantine because they were exposed to someone who did. Hes been shuttling back and forth between Ohio and Washington, D.C., for the past several weeks, frequently the only paying customer on an otherwise empty flight. (No, he does not wear a mask, he said.)

Jordan sees the essential side of the economyhealth-care workers, first responders, grocery stores, trucking companiesfiguring out how to work through the pandemic and wonders why other businesses cant do the same. If that can all happen, we need to get the rest of the economy up and moving, putting in place the same kind of safeguards, the congressman told me. What I know is its time to get back to work, Jordan said. Lets do it now.

If Jordan, along with Trump, occupies one extreme of the debate over shutdowns, Representative Bill Huizenga finds himself somewhere in the middle.

Im ready to go get a haircut, he told me on Tuesday.

It was a political statement as much as it was an acknowledgment of the basic necessity of modern grooming: Like other politicians who must be ready to go on TV at a moments notice, Huizenga gets his gray locks snipped more frequently than most, and he hasnt gotten a haircut since he left Washington last month.

The 51-year-old Michigan Republican is not calling for a full-on immediate return to normal, but he wants his governor, Democrat Gretchen Whitmer, to relax some of the restrictions shes ordered and begin at least a phased, regional reopening of the states economy. Thats in line with what Trump has advocated, and some conservative governors have heeded his call. In Georgia, Governor Brian Kemp announced that beginning tomorrow, businesses including bowling alleys, tattoo parlors, nail salons, and, yes, barber shops can reopen as long as they practice social distancing and screen employees for signs of illness.

Whitmer hasnt done the same in Michigan, a state with one of the largest per capita outbreaks in the country. Last week she expanded restrictions on businesses and personal travel, a decision that prompted protests and drew criticism from Republicans, including Huizenga. Whitmer denounced the demonstrators, saying they endangered peoples lives.

Read: Gretchen Whitmer: Theres going to be a horrible cost

Huizenga represents a district that starts outside Grand Rapids in the western part of the state and runs north along the coast of Lake Michigan. Hes a mainstream conservative in the modern Republican Party. A friend of former Speaker Paul Ryan, hes neither an aisle-crossing moderate nor a staunch ally of Trumps. And while he wasnt about to join the demonstrators in Lansing, he wasnt wholly condemning them either. I wasnt surprised that it happened, he told me, adding that he did wish that the protesters had listened to pleas that they adhere to social distancing while exercising their First Amendment rights.

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Mick Jagger Reacts to Paul McCartney Saying The Beatles Were Better Than The Stones –

Posted: at 3:06 pm

It was only a matter of time, but Mick Jagger has offered his two cents on Paul McCartneys recent comments about The Beatles being better than The Rolling Stones.

Jagger was speaking with Zane Lowe when the topic was brought up. Thats so funny. Hes a sweetheart. Theres obviously no competition, said Jagger, not saying outright which band was better. He continued, The big difference, though, is and sort of slightly seriously, is that the Rolling Stones is a big concert band in other decades and other areas when the Beatles never even did an arena tour, Madison Square Garden with a decent sound system. They broke up before that business started, the touring business for real.That business started in 1969, and the Beatles never experienced that, he noted. They did a great gig, and I was there, at Shea stadium. They did that stadium gig. But the Stones went on, we started doing stadium gigs in the 70s and [are] still doing them now. Thats the real big difference between these two bands. One band is unbelievably luckily still playing in stadiums and then the other band doesnt exist.

The Stones, like every other act in the world, has been forced to put their touring schedule on hold while the world deals with the coronavirus pandemic. Yesterday, the band surprised fans and released a new song, Living in a Ghost Town.

Erica Banas is rock/classic rock news blogger who's well versed in etiquette and extraordinarily nice.

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Will the Pandemic Keep Third Parties Off the 2020 Ballot? – Jimmys Post

Posted: at 3:06 pm

To get on the ballot in the remaining states, they need to collect and submit petition signatures. And in a normal year, they would be on track to do just that. But because of the deadly coronavirusand the social-distancing and stay-at-home orders to minimize its spreadafter March 6, petitioning was over in the United States, as Libertarian Party executive director Daniel Fishman told me.

For Americas third parties, this is nothing less than an existential crisis. Without ballot access, national pollsters wont feel obligated to include Green and Libertarian candidates in their surveys; voters will be less aware of their nominees and platforms; journalists will be less likely to pay any attention to them; and the probability diminishes that either the Libertarians or Greens can reach the holy grail of five percent of the popular votethe point at which they would finally qualify for federal campaign matching funds.

But for the Democratic and Republican Parties, the absence of third parties from the ballot in key states makes 2020 genuinely unlike any presidential election in recent memoryminimizing the chances for spoiler candidates, while giving both major parties something they did not have in 2016: a two-person presidential race, and a simpler path to victory.

Now, dont count the Libertarians and Greens out just yet. There are multiple fronts to the fight ahead, as they see it, and theyre prepared for battle on each one.

What the Libertarians and Greens want most is for states to waive all remaining petition signature requirements. On March 30, Vermont did just that, via emergency legislation signed by the governor. (The Libertarian Party was already on the ballot in Vermont beforehand, but it added a state to the Green Party list.) Ballot Access News reports that [i]t is believed that Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont will soon issue an order that says political parties that are ballot-qualified for at least one statewide office will be deemed to be ballot-qualified for all partisan federal and state office, for 2020, (though both the Libertarians and Greens have already qualified for the presidential election there). A few states have taken smaller steps, such as allowing for electronic signature gathering and delaying deadlines, and more states may follow.

The Green Party is in the process of asking its members to press their governors to issue executive orders that follow Vermonts lead. But Brendan Phillips, the Green Partys ballot access coordinator, is not optimistic that the governors will be accommodating. I dont expect the majority of governors to provide us with any sort of relief, Phillips told me, because in the past, theyve actively fought to keep us off of the ballot. Asked if Republican governors might be eager to help the Greens out, he responded, I suppose that is possible they might want to open that door for us, but that might also open the door to other parties to do the same that they might not want on the ballot.

One party that Republicans might want to keep off the ballot is the socially conservative, anti-internationalist Constitution Party. Richard Winger, the editor of Ballot Access News and a highly regarded expert on third parties, told me the Constitution Party is likely to nominate a presidential candidate, Don Blankenship, who has wealth. That will make it easier for the party to fund the sort of operation necessary in order to get petition signatures and scoop up votes.

You may remember Blankenship from the 2018 campaign, when he ran for the Senate in West Virginia, first in the Republican primary, then in the general election on behalf of the Constitution Party. A coal baron who vehemently maintains his innocence after serving prison time on charges related to the fatal Upper Big Branch Mine disaster, Blankenship made waves for his low-budget ads that referred to Cocaine Mitch McConnell and trafficked in racism by referring to McConnells Asian-American in-laws as his China family.

Such offensive behavior didnt make Blankenship a senator, but in a presidential campaign, it could have more appeal to disaffected Trump voters than any nominee from the socially liberal, pro-immigration Libertarian Party. (In fact, Blankenship once called himself Trumpier than Trump.) By May 2, the final day of the Constitution Partys telephone-based national convention, well know if Blankenship officially receives the groups nomination. (Blankenships campaign did not respond to an email query from me.)

As of now, the Constitution Party isnt on the ballot in those swing states with Republican governors that the Greens want to access: Arizona, Georgia, Iowa and New Hampshire. So if those states GOP governors ease the Green Partys path to appearing on the ballot, it may also help out the Constitution Partypotentially to Trumps detriment.

Since the third parties are not expecting uniform assistance from state executive and legislative branches, they are gearing up for more court battles. Were prepared to sue everywhere that we have to, said Fishman, adding that he feels very confident that were going to win all of those court cases since theres never been a stronger case that the petition requirement is unreasonable.

Experts in election law who were consulted for this story were more skeptical.

Those kind of cases are not slam dunks because courts are generally wary of changing election rules, said Rick Hasen of UC-Irvine School of Law, citing litigation over this months primary election in Wisconsin, which culminated in the U.S. Supreme Court deciding that the state could not extend the deadline for mail-in ballots because preexisting state law implied they needed to be postmarked by Election Day. The Court majority was not very moved by arguments about Covid-19 being a compelling enough reason to change from the ordinary requirements of an election, said Hasen.

I would be shocked if the minor parties do as well in terms of ballot access this year as they did [in 2016], said Michael S. Kang of Northwestern Universitys Pritzker School of Law. He argues because of a lack of binding precedents, judges have a lot of discretion. In turn, he expects a mixed response with some states providing relief and others refusing to change the rules.

I think theyre going to win lawsuits, said Winger of Ballot Access News. He pointed to a Supreme Court precedent from the 1980 presidential election which augurs well for third party relief. In April of that year, Congressman John D. Anderson abandoned his Republican presidential primary bid for an independent campaign. But Ohios filing deadline for the general election was in March. Anderson got on the Ohio ballot thanks to a district court ruling (he also got on the ballot in every other state), and in Anderson v. Celebrezze, the Supreme Court concluded that excessively early filing deadlines violate the First Amendment.

Even so, Greg Magarian a law professor at Washington University in St. Louis, notes there is a competing precedent1994s Timmons v. Twin Cities Area New Partywhich, in his words, says that states can impose constraints on minor parties in order to promote political stability. That isnt quite a blank check, but its a strong declaration that states have a lot of latitude to restrict minor parties.

Meanwhile, the first court battle to waive all signature requirements is now being waged by the Libertarians and Greens in Illinois, with a hearing scheduled for April 17. The two parties have also teamed up for a Georgia lawsuit, asking the state to pro-rate the number of signatures required, accounting for the days during which canvassing is no longer possible. (Unlike the Greens, the Libertarian Party already met the Georgia requirements for its presidential nominee, but are hoping to aid a Libertarian U.S. House candidate.)

Another possible legal obstacle looms for Libertarians in states with relatively early filing deadlines that require the name of the presidential candidate to be specified. The Libertarian convention is scheduled for May 21 in Austin, Texas, but a delay is expected and alternative plans are not set. This poses a particular problem for the party in New Hampshire, which requires candidates from parties that have not prequalified for the November ballot to issue a statement of intent by June 12.

Other states allow third parties to submit names to serve as stand-ins until an official nominee is selected. But Washington State, Wisconsin and Alabama could present deadline problems similar to New Hampshires, though their deadlines are in late July or August.

So even if the Libertarians pitch a perfect game in the courts regarding the waiving of signature requirements, a delay in naming a nominee could still leave them short in a few states. And ballot access in all 50 states, plus DC, again is important to them.

That is the big issue, said Fishman, the executive director of the Libertarian Party. Lacking 50-state ballot access, you become the Green Party. The Green Party has never had 50-state ballot access, and thats why they still havent been taken seriously. It is not a trivial thing. It requires coordination at the party level that speaks to your competency, and in turn, the media tends to pick up on that. The Libertarian Party plans to sue to push back such deadlines if necessary.

The legal consequences of the pandemic are not the only potential obstacles facing the third and fourth biggest political parties. Neither party can be confident it will nominate candidates who can command as much attention as did their 2016 candidates.

Both parties ran the same candidates in the last two elections: former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson for the Libertarians, Massachusetts physician-activist Jill Stein for the Greens. Broader ballot access, stronger resume, respectable running mate (fellow former governor William Weld) and a uniquely whimsical persona (described by comedian Samantha Bee as freaky-deaky) made Johnson the stronger vote-getter. But as Hillary Clinton ruefully recalled in her post-campaign memoir What Happened, in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin, Stein won more votes than Trumps narrow margin of victory.

Johnson and Stein were helped in 2016 by having built-up name recognition in 2012, as well as by facing two major-party nominees with high unfavorability ratings. But since neither candidate wants to find out if the third times a charm, we will see new faces this year.

When the Green Party convenes in early July, most likely virtually, Howie Hawkins is expected to receive the nomination. Like Stein, Hawkins is a longtime party activist and past gubernatorial candidate, taking 1.7 percent of vote in 2018 against New Yorks Andrew Cuomo. But he has a long way to go before he is a household name.

The Libertarians have had a field of candidates largely unknown outside of party circles. Jacob Hornberger, an ally of Ron Paul, has won six of the nine nonbinding party primaries. (Perennial satirical candidate Vermin Supreme, who has taken on a slightly more serious tone this time around, has won two.) This past week, Jim Gray, a former California judge and Johnsons 2012 running mate, jumped in the race, defining himself to the libertarian Reason magazine as an incrementalist and a pragmatist. Gray had been supporting the Republican-turned-independent-turned-Democrat-turned-Libertarian Lincoln Chafee, but stepped in after Chafee suspended his campaign in early April.

Michigan Congressman Justin Amash, who attracted national attention for quitting the Republican Party and supporting Trumps impeachment, is attracting the most buzz. This past week, he teased a Libertarian presidential run and said he will make an announcement soon. Still, while he would be the highest office holder in the field, his nomination at the convention would not be assured. Johnson needed two ballots at the 2016 convention to win the nod, over opposition from the partys more radical faction that can be suspicious of former Republicans as insufficiently libertarian. (Johnson in 2016 described a Libertarian Party convention as composed of really wonderful, well-meaning, well-spoken people and then people that are just batshit crazy.)

And while his poll numbers could change if an announcement generated a lot of press coverage, Amash is not starting from a strong position; a Morning Consult poll this week pegs his support in a three-way race with Trump and Biden at a scant one percent. Such anemic numbers wouldnt help him convince party delegates that he possesses any special ability to help the party clear the 5 percent popular-vote threshold.

The popularity and notoriety of the actual nominees is not irrelevant to parties judicial strategy. Beyond the constitutional principles and legalities, judges may not feel much public pressure to bend over backwards for third-party candidates the public isnt clamoring to support.

Judges arent truly insulated from public sentiment about anything, said Magarian. If the public broadly wanted for minor parties to be able to compete more robustly in elections, I think courts would feel at least some background pressure to take minor parties complaints about ballot access seriously. Instead, my sense is that the public and most opinion leaders tend to view minor parties as troublemakers, spoilers and refuges for unserious political obstructionists.

Will the lack of ballot access for third parties impact the 2020 elections outcome?

Democrats have long blamed Green Party candidates for undermining their presidential candidates: in Florida and New Hampshire in 2000, and in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin in 2016. In each of those state contests, the Green Party candidate won more votes than the Republican margin of victory. So for Democrats, the fewer swing states with third-party candidates on the ballot, the fewer heart palpitations.

But whether or not the third-party vote tipped the 2016 to Donald Trump is still hotly debated. Stein campaigned on the argument that Hillary Clinton was not progressive enough, but Johnson sought to attract votes from both disaffected Democrats and Republicans. Still, based on 2016 exit poll data, which asked respondents how they would vote in two-person race, Voxs Tara Golshan found that without Stein in the running, Clinton would have won Michigan, still lost Florida, and Wisconsin and Pennsylvania would have been a 48 to 48 percent toss-up. So, maybe it mattered, maybe it didnt.

At minimum, a robust minor-party presence complicates major-party strategizing. Instead of focusing on appeals to swing voters in the middle, confident that ones base is in place, major party candidates would have to worry about whether they need simultaneous appeals to swing voters on the fringes.

The battle for third-party legitimacy by the Libertarians and Greens in 2020 is not over. But if the nations state election officials, governors and judges dont swoop in to save them, Donald Trump and Joe Biden will able to face each other, one against one.

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Texas Republicans Have Spectacularly Failed the Coronavirus Test – The New York Times

Posted: April 18, 2020 at 6:51 pm

Ted Cruz recently told Fox News that the mainstream media was trying to root for disaster. Both senators have just been named to a White House task force to open the economy, which makes me feel not one iota safer.

My particular favorite, though, is Ron Paul, the former congressman from Texas who published a very long column on March 16 on the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity website headlined The Coronavirus Hoax. There just werent enough people with the disease to warrant the incursion into our civil liberties, he warned. That was just about a week before his son, Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky, came down with the faux virus himself.

I will say in defense of my state that none of these people are stupid; they arent the stereotypical yahoos that so many non-Texans like to imagine live among us in droves. No. They represent the stubborn if expediently applied strain of anti-government independence that is inherent in the Texas character, which conveniently dovetails with being a Trump toady.

Mr. Abbotts fealty to the president, along with that of our senators, could mean that Texans could become the public health guinea pigs who will suffer mightily if the state opens too soon.

What all this behavior will mean in a state that is slowly turning purple is anyones guess. We are lucky that, thanks to local stay-in-place orders and a comparative lack of density in our cities, the number of Texas cases is only over 16,000, with deaths at over 390. But we are not at peak, experts tell us, and meanwhile over one million Texans have filed for unemployment. Thats a number that will cause a lot of restiveness here, and maybe some reflection on just how much actual leadership Republican leaders have displayed during this awful time.

Not that leadership hasnt been on display in other quarters. Some of the slack has been taken up by the private sector, with restaurant and small-business owners banding together to help their colleagues and trying their best to fill in for a government that is M.I.A.

The big businesses have gotten into the act, too, in particular HEB, a San Antonio-based grocery store chain that has become a lifesaver during the kinds of climate emergencies that have become the new normal here (see: Hurricane Harvey, 2017). As my colleagues Dan Solomon and Paula Forbes reported recently in Texas Monthly, HEB has had a pandemic and influenza plan since 2005, when it first took note of the H5N1 threat. The chain put that plan in effect in 2009 when the H1N1 swine flu hit.

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Texas Republicans Have Spectacularly Failed the Coronavirus Test - The New York Times

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Former Treasury Secretary and Iraq war critic Paul O’Neill dies at 84 – India Gone Viral

Posted: at 6:51 pm

U.S. Treasury Secretary Paul ONeill sits in his office September 19, 2001 in Washington, DC. Sworn in to his position January 20, 2001, he was fired in December 2002.

David Hume Kennerly

Paul ONeill, the blunt-spoken former head of Alcoa Corp who was fired after two rocky years as U.S. President George W. Bushs Treasury secretary, died on Saturday at the age of 84 at his home in Pittsburgh, The Wall Street Journal reported.

His family said he had been treated for lung cancer and his death was unrelated to the novel coronavirus, the WSJ reported.

ONeill served as the Republican Bushs first Treasury secretary, from January 2001 to December 2002, during a period of in-fighting within the administration and tough economic times worsened by the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.

The multimillionaire former corporate chieftain he led aluminum company Alcoa from 1987 to 2000 was not a big fan of Bushs first round of tax cuts. He then argued in vain with others in the administration, including Vice President Dick Cheney, against more cuts that he felt could fuel budget deficits and hurt the economy.

He also earned a reputation as a loose cannon as Treasury secretary with comments that at various times infuriated members of Bushs inner circle, fellow Republicans in Congress, Wall Street, Latin American governments and others.

It was Cheney, his friend dating to the 1970s in President Gerald Fords administration and had recruited ONeill into the Treasury job, who told him that he was fired. ONeill said Cheney had asked him to say his departure was his own decision, but ONeill refused.

Im too old to begin telling lies now, he said.

History bore out his concerns over the Bush tax cuts, which along with the costs of Bushs wars in Iraq and Afghanistan contributed to soaring U.S. budget deficits in subsequent years.

Regarding Iraq, ONeill said Bushs team had decided on a course of war which it then tried to justify by touting the threat posed by Iraqi leader Saddam Husseins weapons of mass destruction. After the invasion, no such weapons were found.

From the start, we were building the case against Hussein and looking at how we could take him out and change Iraq into a new country, ONeill said in the 2004 book The Price of Loyalty by journalist Ron Suskind. And, if we did that, it would solve everything. It was about finding a way to do it.

Asked in 2008 whether he felt bitter about his time in the Bush administration, ONeill told the New York Times: No. Im thankful I got fired when I did so that I didnt have to be associated with what they subsequently did.

During his stint as Treasury secretary ONeill outraged congressional Republicans by calling one of their tax cut measures show business. He annoyed others in the administration by telling lawmakers that Bushs signature tax cut drive was not likely to boost the economy in the short term.

He dismissed stock, bond and currency traders as people who sit in front of flickering green screens whose jobs he could master in a couple of weeks. Brazils government protested after ONeill worried publicly that money lent to Latin American countries would vanish into Swiss bank accounts.

He also irked Wall Street with overly optimistic assessments of the economy including an errant forecast after the 2001 attacks that the stock market would swiftly bounce back. His comment that the administration was not interested in pursuing a strong-dollar policy rattled global currency markets.

ONeill was born on Dec. 4, 1935, in St. Louis to a family of modest means. After college, he began his career in government in 1961, working for the Veterans Administration. He was named as the No. 2 official in the White House budget office in 1974 and became friends with fellow Ford administration officials Cheney and Alan Greenspan, the future Fed chairman.

After Ford lost his 1976 re-election bid, ONeill joined International Paper Co, eventually becoming its president.

Greenspan served on Alcoas board when the aluminum company was searching for a new leader, and recruited ONeill.

ONeill served as both chairman and CEO of Alcoa from 1987 to 1999 increasing its profit, stock price and market share and retired as chairman in 2000. His Alcoa stock and options exceeded $100 million by the time he left.

ONeill and his wife, Nancy, had four children.

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