One of the things he says is, ‘We’ve got an empire. And we should bring all the troops home.’ He’s the one who is, really, in my heart on foreign affairs, not Barack Obama.
REINER: Only a smattering you got on that, Bill. You notice that? It was a small smattering.
MAHER: Because they’re brainwashed liberals.
REINER: Okay. That’s who you attract.
MAHER: Maybe they [laughs].
Note the phrasing: “in my heart” on foreign affairs. Not “in my head” on foreign affairs? A confession that his need to perceive his country as the world’s oppressive bogeyman comes from an emotional impulse, not a logical analysis of facts and counter-arguments?
The affinity for Ron Paul (and for the specific, Old Right, utopian, friendship-with-Iran, foreign policy delusions he represents) is an emotional impulse seeking psychological satisfaction, not a rational analysis of empirical facts. Hence the inevitable frustrations to be found when engaging with those possessed of this political mania.
There are two paths of political-intellectual life and we all tread both over the course of our lives:
1. Facts (as well as our brains and rational thinking) drive our ideological decisions. As we learn more about an issue (and new facts come to light — the world does change, you know!) our views evolve.
2. Ideology (the political world’s equivalent of religion and theology) drives our search for facts. We only expose ourselves to and only accept facts which support the conclusions to which we have emotionally married ourselves.
But ultimately we must all choose to walk one path more than the other. Because as is apparent — they are irreconcilable opposites.