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Should Rand Paul Debate Bill Kristol?

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Neoconservative and former Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol offered to debate libertarian Republican Senator Rand Paul in a fiery exchange of tweets on Wednesday morning.

Paul had earlier expressed his approval in response to the news that the Weekly Standard would be going out of business.

In the empty vacuum that is the mind of a die-hard MSNBC viewer, antipathy to the political program of Kristol and the neoconservative movement he’s associated with can only be viewed within the context of post-2016 Trump-era American politics. Kristol has shown himself more than willing to go along revisionist attempts to rehabilitate him, having reinvented himself as a progressive elite liberal “conservative” known for his strong denunciations of American nationalism and the Trump administration.

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However, to many longtime activists and personalities on the right, opposing Kristol’s brand of politics predates both Donald Trump and Kristol’s opportunistic lurch to the progressive left. It’s fitting that a Paul would be aware of this, as the 2008 Presidential Campaign of Rand’s father, Ron, was a watershed challenge to the prevailing train of thought in the contemporary Republican Party. Paul ran as a small-L libertarian challenging military interventionism and regime change, ultimately losing to John McCain, for whom Bill Kristol was a foreign policy advisor.

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Although at one point it appeared Kristol was beyond reproach as a national Republican figure, the revolution within the GOP brought about by Donald Trump’s American nationalist presidential campaign has led to political realignment for the foreign policy “mastermind.” It was recently revealed that much of Kristol’s political infrastructure was funded by progressive billionaires, including a relative of the fiercely hated financier George Soros.

For many conservatives, libertarians, and right-wingers, the debate between advocates of a restrained foreign policy and supporters of regime change remains relevant and appropriate. One can’t help but wonder if Paul accepting Kristol’s offer to debate could prove to be insightful to many throughout the conservative movement.

Free Speech

British Police Officer CRIMINALLY CHARGED for Sharing George Floyd Meme in WhatsApp Group

Free speech is dead.

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A British police officer has been criminally charged over a George Floyd meme he allegedly shared with his colleagues in a WhatsApp group.

Sergeant Geraint Jones, aged 47, is charged with sending the image on 30 May last year by means of a public electronic communications network, an offence contrary to section 127 of the Communications Act 2003,” a watchdog from the Independent Office for Police Conduct announced. “An altered image of George Floyd’s arrest in Minneapolis was shared within a WhatsApp group that included a number of other police officers and staff.”

Our investigation began in June 2020 following a referral from the force,” the watchdog continued. “At its conclusion in October we sent our investigation report to the Crown Prosecution Service, which has authorized the charge.”

Sergeant Jones is scheduled to appear in court on January 28. He has been suspended from duty since June.

It’s no secret that free speech is all but dead in the United Kingdom. British elites stand out in particular for their fervent belief in neoliberal globalism and veneration of its secular saints. Their society encourages people to snitch and tattle on their fellow citizens to a higher degree than most any other Western nation.

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George Floyd is also one of the neoliberal order’s foremost secular saints. Anything you say about him that isn’t equivalent to hero-worship will get you put on notice. Criticizing the intensity of his veneration and the Black Lives Matter movement itself are sufficient to get you labeled as a depraved racist and fired from your job—even in the United States.

Don’t think that hate speech laws aren’t possible in America either. If a majority of Americans and legal scholars in a decade or two come to believe that the First Amendment doesn’t protect “hate speech,” who’s to say that the laws won’t be changed to reflect that?

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