So all that slack I’ve been cutting Ron Paul for the newsletters controversy? Yeah, it’s all gone.

Reason did some digging and uncovered tax documents which prove that Paul, his wife and daughter were compensated for their services as staff members of the company that published the newsletters…

Besides Ron Paul and Lew Rockwell, the officers of Ron Paul & Associates included Paul’s wife Carol, Paul’s daughter Lori Pyeatt, Paul staffer Penny Langford-Freeman, and longtime campaign manager Mark Elam (who has managed every Paul congressional campaign since 1996 and is currently the Texas coordinator for the presidential run), according to tax records from 1993 and 2001. Langford-Freeman did not respond to interview requests as of press time. Elam, president of M&M Graphics and Advertising, confirmed to reason that his company printed the newsletters, but said that the texts reached him as finished products.

The publishing operation was lucrative. A tax document from June 1993—wrapping up the year in which the Political Report had published the “welfare checks” comment on the L.A. riots—reported an annual income of $940,000 for Ron Paul & Associates, listing four employees in Texas (Paul’s family and Rockwell) and seven more employees around the country. If Paul didn’t know who was writing his newsletters, he knew they were a crucial source of income and a successful tool for building his fundraising base for a political comeback.

Reason also reveals that when first confronted about the newsletters in a previous Congressional campaign, Paul didn’t disavow them…

Back in 1996, Paul narrowly eked out a congressional victory over Democrat Lefty Morris, who made the newsletters one of his main campaign issues, damning them both for their racial content and for their advocacy of drug legalization. At the time, Paul defended the statements that appeared under his name, claiming that they expressed his “philosophical differences” with Democrats and had been “taken out of context.” He finally disavowed them in a 2001 interview with Texas Monthly, explaining that his campaign staff had convinced him at the time that it would be too “confusing” to attribute them to a ghostwriter.

So who did write the newsletters? Well, the article has a number of sources claiming it’s an open secret that Lew Rockwell, of the eponymous, was the main ghost writer. And most of you know how closely attached those two have been and are currently. If not, check out Ron Paul’s endorsement page.

What can he say at this point? I mean, we’re talking about income earned from out and out bigotry? Of course this shouldn’t take away from Paul’s “current” message, but it completely decimates Paul’s credibility. He simply can’t claim he didn’t know what was being written in newsletters from a company that employed and paid him, his wife and his daughter. No way.

Paulites, please share your thoughts.

I forgot to mention the most important part of all this, and that has to do with the trap Paul put himself in by putting his family on the payroll.

You see, Paul had only listed himself on the payroll then he could still have some amount of plausible deniability and say, “Hey, I know I drew a salary, but I trusted my surrogates and they ended up doing things unbeknownst to me. I deplore their actions. Blah, blah, blah.” Actually, I think that’s pretty close to what he has said.

But he put his wife and his daughter on the payroll, and I think we can all make a pretty educated guess as to why: tax reasons. That way he could spread the burden between 3 people and he wouldn’t have to give back so much of it. The only problem with that is now he has two other people who are extremely close to him that have to say they didn’t know what was going on either. And if they say that, well, then what were they doing on the payroll besides providing a tax shelter for Dr. No?

So he either lied to the government so he could avoid paying taxes or he lied to all of us about knowing what was going on with the newsletters. And something tells me that he did both. He set his own trap and willingly walked right into it.

Does this qualify as tragic irony?

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