On Thursday Robert Scheer responded to reader questions and comments about his column "Blame Clinton, Not Paul." Scheer said, "both Democrats and Republicans have betrayed the interests of black and brown people and those who got stuck with subprime mortgages, and that's the pressing civil rights issue right now."
The following is a transcript of a chat that took place on Thursday, May 27th at 3 PM PST.
Thu, 27 May 2010 22:44:59 GMT
Comment: Welcome everyone, feel free to chat amongst yourselves while we wait for Robert Scheer to arrive.
Thu, 27 May 2010 22:54:52 GMT
We'll stagger questions to give Bob a chance to answer, so feel free to send them now.
Thu, 27 May 2010 23:02:53 GMT
OK. Let's get started.
3:02 Comment From haroldbeu
Thu, 27 May 2010 23:02:58 GMT
Comment: [Bill] Clinton certainly has much to answer for concerning the financial debacle, but Rand Paul would further de-regulate the financial sector. But I am puzzled why you are not outraged at Paul's equivocation concerning the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It may not be a racist stance, but it is certainly inhumane and naive.
3:05 Robert Scheer
Thu, 27 May 2010 23:05:17 GMT
Look, just to be clear, I have no intention of supporting Rand Paul to be president or senator or anything else. I am trying to say that the demonization of this guy is all wrong; he makes some valid points that should be debated that concern the waging of unconstitutional war. He said he would have opposed the war that most Democrats supported and he was against the banking bailout. I am much more concerned with the failure of leadership of the people I voted for. I voted for Clinton, I supported him and I feel he betrayed the trust I put into him.
Thu, 27 May 2010 23:06:10 GMT
Ken Horton in Santa Monica asks: Can you cite one country that employs Libertarian principles successfully? One of the things Libertarians never want to come right out and declare, is that you want to PRIVATIZE EVERYTHING! No Public Schools, No Water Works, No Fire Department, No Police, No Military, No Garbage, No Roads of any kind, No Judicial Entities, etc. WHY IS THIS NOT INSANE AND TOTALLY UNWORKABLE EXCEPT IN SOME BIZARRE UTOPIA?
3:08 Robert Scheer
Thu, 27 May 2010 23:08:23 GMT
Well, you know, utopian construct can also be very useful; at the heart of what is appealing about Christianity is a utopian concept. Every major political philosophy comes from utopia. I wouldn't discard libertarian critiques. I certainly think that if there's one group in this country that has had the guts to challenge the marriage with Wall Street and the government, it's been with libertarian views, and I applaud that.
Thu, 27 May 2010 23:08:30 GMT
Question from the Internet: "Why is the media focusing on Rand Paul and the Civil Rights Act? "Meanwhile the left indiscriminately bomb the brown people of the Middle East...
"The real racists: Obama and Pelosi. Woolworth's isn't even a store any longer. Meanwhile Afghan children become orphans daily. But don't bother bringing that up, media! It's better for ratings if you paint Rand Paul a racist just for supporting the First Amendment and property rights."
3:10 Comment From Larry Scruggs
Thu, 27 May 2010 23:10:17 GMT
Comment: And just how, exactly, are Obama and Pelosi racists?
3:11 Robert Scheer
Thu, 27 May 2010 23:11:45 GMT
(Answering question from the Internet) I think the media is distracted by Rand Paul because he is the target of the day and he is new to fresh perspective, and he is threatening in a way he shouldn't be. Enormous bloated government is good for us -- I don't agree with that. I think that $800 billion defense budget on wars that are unnecessary is a big mistake, and Rand Paul has been willing to challenge some of that spending, and the banking bailout is an enormous waste. I think he is correct to criticize that, so why not agree with someone when they make good points. I do believe there is a need for public education and I do support that.