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Rudy Giuliani's Reading List "Bomb-let" for Ron Paul Campaign November 30th

By Walt Thiessen

Topic: Presidential Campaign 2008
Rudy Giuliani’s Reading List Focus of Next Ron Paul Fundraising “Bomb-let” on November 30th
Grassroots activism is at the core of the Ron Paul campaign. I caught up with one activist from Connecticut who has been in the thick of the activities.
by Walt Thiessen

Professional political operatives and high-paid campaign advisors now have to make way for enthusiastic amateurs who are invading their territory this election cycle. The Ron Paul campaign is loaded with first-time activists who are taking direct responsibility to do what they can to get their man elected. The result is complete campaign decentralization and the power of thousands of loosely coordinated efforts that add up to a genuine groundswell of support.

Bob Larkin of Connecticut is one such activist. A pizza deliveryman with five kids to feed, he somehow finds time to take care of them while also making contacts on the Internet, organizing rallies, handing out literature by the thousands of pieces, and doing whatever else he can to get his man elected. Larkin is a Paulite, one of those much-maligned army of people who have spontaneously organized themselves via the Internet. Larkin told me how the Rudy's Reading List fundraiser got started.

"Well, the latest news is the November 30th money "bomb-let. The campaign sent out an email saying, we need more cash' to get through the next two weeks. So we as the grassroots are working to get them a fairly significant amount of money on November 30th to help them with the cash flow leading up to the primaries."

That email from the campaign Larkin referred to said in part:

"Time is of the essence. You see, we need to raise money well before we plan to spend it. That's because most of the expenditures that we make need to be paid for weeks in advance. For example, we need to buy crucial airtime for the end of December right now. The sooner we raise this money, the sooner that we can spread Dr. Paul's message - our message - in the early primary states. Time truly is money. Fact is, we only have about two weeks to raise money for the early primaries."

Larkin gave me more details about the "bomb-let." He said:

"It's called, Rudy's Readling List[].' Do you remember back in that debate (in South Carolina on May 15, 2007) where Giuliani and Ron Paul sort of went at it? The next day, Ron Paul handed Rudy Giuliani a reading list of books to read, so he could understand blowback."

I did indeed remember that event. When Ron Paul said during the debate, "They attack us because we've been over there; we've been bombing Iraq for 10 years," Giuliani jumped in and replied, "That's an extraordinary statement, that we invited the attack because we were attacking Iraq. I don't think I've heard that before, and I've heard some pretty absurd explanations for September 11th. And I would ask the congressman to withdraw that comment and tell us that he didn't really mean that." Hence the reading list.

I dug up a copy of that reading list. It was posted at by a blogger there. There were four publications on the list:

  1. Imperial Hubris: Why the West Is Losing the War on Terror by Michael Scheuer
  2. Dying to Win: The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism by Robert Pape
  3. Blowback, Second Edition: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire by Chalmers Johnson
  4. The 9/11 Commission Report: Final Report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (Authorized Edition) by National Commission on Terrorist Attacks

I particularly like the last entry on the list. I wonder if Rudy Giuliani ever actually read the 9/11 Commission report? I did, and it does indeed confirm Dr. Paul's claim. On pages 48-49, it says:

"[Bin Laden] also stresses grievances against the United States widely shared in the Muslim world. He inveighed against the presence of U.S. troops in Saudi Arabia, the home of Islam's holiest sites. He spoke of the suffering of the Iraqi people as a result of sanctions imposed after the Gulf War, [my emphasis] and he protested U.S. support of Israel."

On page 334 the report further reinforces the claim, saying:

"President Bush had wondered immediately after the attack whether Saddam Hussein's regime might have had a hand in [9/11]. Iraq had been an enemy of the United States for 11 years, and was the only place in the world where the United States was engaged in ongoing combat operations." [my emphasis]

The 9/11 Commission report also noted that President Clinton had, "authorized major air strikes against Iraq." [my emphasis]

CNN, among others, took note of Ron Paul's assignment of a summer reading list to Rudy Giuliani, although Giuliani has given no indication that he did his homework over the summer. Given the fact that the media consider Giuliani to be the front-runner in the race, his ignorance of the facts surrounding 9/11 makes him seem quite uninformed, so the fundraiser in honor of Rudy's Reading List is quite apropos.

Taking a look at Rudy's Reading List (the website), I found that more than 1,100 people have already committed to giving that day. As impressive as that it, a quick look at the Boston Tea Party money bomb site, a one-day fundraiser scheduled for December 16th, the anniversary of the Boston Tea Party, shows that nearly 20,000 have signed up for that event. It's no wonder that Larkin refers to the Rudy's Reading List fundraising event as a "bomb-let." He continued:

"You gotta give high points to the grassroots' creativity. This started up two days ago, and it caused quite a stir among the grassroots, because the campaign's email said, "We don't need the money a month from now. We need it right now! Some people were a little pissed off, because the campaign was already on track for the original goal of $12 million by the end of December (it has already raised $9 million of that)."

Most of the discussion Larkin referred to occurs at Ron Paul Forums, a leading hotbed of grassroots support for the Paul campaign. It was this same forum from which the USA Today full page newspaper ad was developed and published earlier this week, due to the enormous generosity of a single, wealthy supporter named Larry Lepard who put up the money for that ad. The forums boast over 7,000 members and has some very detailed information, including separate topics for primary and caucus information in all 50 states, Guam, the U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and the Northern Marianas.

A quick perusal of the site shows a tremendous assortment of discussions on various aspects of campaigning. There are scores of writing projects under discussion, including letter to the editor campaigns. The video section is impressive. It includes sources for video software, TV ad scripts, various video projects that are underway, a topic that tries to recruit animators' clips of Dr. Paul posted to be used by others in their various projects, etc. There is a huge section on acquiring and distributing campaign materials, including yard signs, handouts, clothing, flyers, rubber stamps, screensavers, road sign materials, bumper stickers, etc. You name it, it's there. There's also an entire section for collecting discussion points to use when trying to recruit new voters to the Paul camp.

Ref: Nolan Charts



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November 23, 2007 in Current Affairs | Permalink


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