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MSNBC's Tucker Carlson invites Ron Paul to give 'freedom tutorial'
David Edwards and Muriel Kane
Published: Thursday June 7, 2007
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"It isn't easy standing alone as one of the last true small-government conservatives in today's Republican Party," said Tucker Carlson in introducing guest Ron Paul for an interview Wednesday on MSNBC.

"It's sort of strange that they'd call me 'eccentric' and 'strange' when I defend the Constitution," responded Paul, "but I think that's the point where we've gotten to, where defending the Constitution is a little bit different."

"I think the party's in shambles," Paul continued. "I'm considered pretty conservative ... and yet they think that I don't fit in, and I've even been asked to leave the Republican Party. But they won't admit that the foreign policy is flawed and that the war is the real issue. And if they don't admit to that, I don't see how they can come up with a candidate that's going to be electable."

"I've been working hard to bring the conservatives and the non-interventionists and the anti-war people into the Republican Party," he went on, "because we do have a tradition in the Republican Party that represented these views. But I have to admit, in the last six years, it's been undermined. ... I'm afraid that if we don't get a candidate in either party that represents these views, I think there's going to be a lot of Americans that are going to take a walk."

Paul was then asked about Rudy Giuliani's support for a national ID card and responded, "It's all done in the name of safety, everybody's frightened to death, and if you don't sacrifice your liberties you can't be safe. And yet the dangers exist, but they're not quite bad enough -- and they never should be bad enough -- to sacrifice liberty. There's no reason to sacrifice liberty in thinking that you're going to be safer."

"Amen," concluded Carlson. "I hope you can come on regularly, just for a tutorial on what it means to be free."

The following video is from MSNBC's Tucker, broadcast on June 6.

Partial transcript, courtesy of Utahns for Ron Paul 2008:

Ron Paul: ...we do have a tradition in the Republican party that represented these [non-interventionist and anti-war] views; but, I have to admit that in the last six years it's been undermined ... I think the message that has to be gotten out is that conservatives can be opposed to military adventurism and wars and huge spending that entails operating an empire. And if we don't accept that message, I don't know what [the Republicans] are going to do. I think a lot of them are just going to flat out stay home because you're right--the Democrats don't offer a real option ... I'm afraid that if we don't get a candidate in either party that represents these views, I think there're going to be a lot of Americans that are going to take a walk.

Tucker Carlson: You said last night that no candidate here is willing to remove the pre-emptive nuclear strike option against a country that has done no harm to us directly and is no threat to our national security. But there is evidence, actually, that Iran funded the bombing of the barracks in Beirut in 1983 that killed all those US marines, and they do fund terrorism. I mean, it's not like Iraq circa 2002--we know that Iran has funded terror. They're not a threat at all to us?

Ron Paul: Not really ... this idea that they're on the verge of having a weapon and that we have to put anti-balistic missiles up in Europe because the Iranians might attack us--I mean, that's a bit of a stretch. No, they're not capable of it. They don't have an airforce. They don't have a real military. They have essentially no navy. ... you say, well, they've said nasty things against Israel. Israel could wipe Iran off the face of the earth with a few nuclear weapons in no time. The Iranians aren't going to attack, I mean, they talk beligerently, but so did Kruschev. They talked about burying us, and yet we stood up to the Soviets, I mean, they have 40,000 nuclear weapons. So this idea that we have to be so bold and so intimidating, and looking for another war, or to spread the current war—I mean, we have enough problems on our hands, and yet here we are threatening to spread the war in to Iran. I think it's very, very dangerous, and it doesn't make any sense to me.

Tucker Carlson: If you get in an argument with someone about the national ID card, the argument you're likely to get is, "Well, gee, the credit cards have a lot of information on you and you don't feel like your liberty is being abridged because of that." Why is a national ID card a threat to liberty?

Ron Paul: Well, one is private and one is government. I don't want the government snooping on me. I would give my fingerprint to Continental Airlines—the airlines I fly—in order to get through the line and be assured that I'm a safe passenger. But I don't want to do it with the government. The government is there to protect privacy, not to invade our privacy. Now our government, it does more to protect their secrecy and they violate our privacy. So there's a big difference and a credit card company--if they violate our privacy, then you can use the government to enforce laws, because they promised me to keep my privacy confidential.