An Open Letter to Jesse Benton

Dear Jesse Benton,

My name is Tracy Diaz. I am one of the organizers of “P.A.U.L. Festival”. I, along with thousands of other grassroots supporters, champion the cause of liberty. There is a great divide in our movement, and I have spent the better part of the last few months trying to bridge that divide. All of us who organized the festival did. And while we took beatings from all sides, we still forged ahead knowing that this event was very important- it needed to be the springboard for the message to move forward. It needed to be a place where great minds could come together and motivate, and continue our work, even after it became obvious to us that Ron Paul would not be the Republican nominee for President. So, that is what we did.

We assembled a “who’s who” of the liberty movement- musical acts, speakers, vendors. You name someone, they were most likely there. Well, everyone that is, except those you got your hands on. And interestingly enough, it appears even some you did get your hands on. Jesse Benton, it seems you have done everything in your power to try to get this celebration to fail! And I can only wonder why? After some thought, I have my answer.You see Jesse, while you were busy using your father-in-laws presidential run to further your career, those of us you refer to as “fringe” were donating to pay your salary. While you ostracized us and pushed us aside, the “fringe” out here were organizing sign waves, and GOTV education campaigns. The same way we did it in 2008. The same way we did it before we had your “help”. On our OWN.

While you were busy working to make sure you had a nice big house to live in, we were sacrificing our paychecks to travel to rally’s and speeches, and make super brochures and run for local office— all of our hopes hanging on the chance that we could have liberty in the White House and save our country. All of our hopes hanging on the chance that Ron Paul could be president. We didn’t do this so we would have a job after November, we did it so that we could have our FUTURE. We didn’t do it so we could position ourselves for our next campaign, we did it so that our children could grow up in a free America. You must know the platform by now, right?I brushed a lot that I have heard about you aside, but this is just a blatant smack in our collective faces. A light bulb went off recently, and now it has gotten brighter. YOU SIR are the reason for the divide. You, and your “Republican” strategy, and the turning up of your nose at people who don’t look the way you want them to, and question the government at every turn. YOU are the reason. You see, while you continue to play your party politics, and compromise OUR ideals over and over and over again to suit YOU, WE won’t compromise a THING. We are done compromising. We are done playing the game. We are not going anywhere, and you can NOT stop us.

If anything, you have at least now unwittingly proven your true colors. The message of liberty will live on, the two party paradigm can, and will, come to an end, and we will succeed. We will be stronger than ever now. We are FIERCE, there are many of us, and we don’t need you and your stuffy suit, and nasty attitude. We will happily wear our t-shirts, and sandals, and continue the work the needs to be continued. We aren’t doing it for you or your career Mr. Benton, we are doing it to save our country.We will not be disappointed, for you have just made our job easier and shown us exactly what type of a person you are and what your goal has been the entire time. You have just tarred and feathered yourself sir, and I am glad you did it. It just makes us that much more credible, because we have been saying it all along. We are not the “fringe” Mr. Benton. We are the many, and the strong, with liberty in our hearts, and our country to save. We are the “Ragamuffins” Mr. Benton, and we are NEVER going to “go away”. I stand with the “Ragamuffins”. For we are the REAL grassroots.


Tracy Diaz

9 Responses to An Open Letter to Jesse Benton

  • This is childish. It will please everyone who already hates Benton, but what does this accomplish except more divide and conquer?

    If you were honest and brave, you would address this letter to Ron Paul and not complain about some guy’s salary.

    A smart business or campaign (or anything) is not run by majority rule. No matter what, a campaign is going to piss off a certain portion of the grassroots. Do the majority of "liberty activists" actually have a clue about effective political action? Of course not–that’s why things like "super brochures" happen. Believe me, there isn’t an experienced marketing person or effective political activist who would go near the "super brochure" and yet, that is what the majority of our movement were pushing (and losing votes, by the way, of likely Republican voters.)

    There is always going to be a tension between the exuberant grassroots and the campaign–that’s okay. But, as a leader, you should understand that and not make that tension even bigger.

  • Adam Kokesh debates Webster Tarpley about Jesse.

  • Robert,


    You must have no clue about the tremendous sacrifices of time, money and effort the "Ragamuffins" have made to support Ron Paul and the Liberty message. Many of us even put on our Sunday best along with our best behavior and joined and worked within the republican party, even though the very thought was repugnant.

    We did it for Liberty. The campaign was sabotaged in 2008 and again this go ’round. The RNC should be having a contested nomination this week. Instead, delegates have been removed, we’ve been told to "behave" and Ron Paul didn’t even get a speaking slot. I just read that the Ron Paul delegates are stuck up in the nosebleed seats. Oh well, I guess that’s better than having all your materials confiscated like last time.

    None of this—not one bit of it—was caused by the Ragamuffins. The Ragamuffin crowd is a lesson in diversity; every age, color, race, creed, religion, and even political affiliation. But we were united for Liberty. You say we activists don’t know about effective political action, well, maybe not. But on the whole, we were a LOT more effective than the campaign. Do you think those big crowds came from playing the republican party game? Of course not! They were from the many "dummies" like me who spend every waking moment turning people on to Liberty. Things like the super brochure are a direct result of the ineptitude of the "official" campaign. In my state, Virginia, there were only 2 people on the primary ballot and we couldn’t get any material to hand out despite the fact that many of us had donated hundreds of dollars to the campaign.

    Tracy said what needed to be said and it’s not about dividing; it’s about calling someone out who has caused damage to Ron Paul and to the Liberty movement. I stand with Tracy.

  • liberty4ev,

    I feel your pain and frustration and it sounds like you actually know what you are talking about. I’m grassroots too–I may have been a bit pointed and simplistic in my writing. It’s just a general rule that there are always people who attack the campaign manager, always–it’s almost their role, seemingly, to play the bad guy–so the grassroots take out their anger on them. I’m just betting that 99% of the people attacking Jesse are attacking based on zero accurate information and if they have info, it’s taken out of context.

    Anyway–good luck to the delegates that are in Tampa. Stand up for America.

  • I will write Ron Paul in for President if the Republicans do not get that vote counted for their party.
    I could vote GJ, I don’t know if Republicans would get the credit for my write in vote.

    I will vote for freedom loving Democrats and Libertarians etc. but not one vote for Republicans.
    Their voter count fraud in every state and criminality needs an answer..that is my answer.

  • Directed to Robert–

    I am not tying to "please" anyone. I am merely espousing the FACTS. There will be some who don’t agree, and that is OK. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. However, being a part of all of this, down to it’s core, and having the experience of working with the "official" campaign. I stand by my words. Thank you for your input.

  • Benton will never work in politics again no matter what establishment scumbag Republicans may have promised him. People who betray their friends will never be trusted by anyone.
    Sad to watch this implosion. I wish Ron Paul had done a better job vetting his staff, but this is just a hiccup, the revolution will go on, and Benton will not be a part of it. LIBERTY!

  • With all due respect, this letter is laden with fallacious points. The invalidity is that of a child’s perspective – or in the writer’s case: lack of experience.

    There is some disconnect with the respect you give our beloved Ron Paul. You "haters" seem to forget he is the one that is paying for Benton’s salary – as he hired him, not once, but twice. Dr. Paul is not the type of man to make the same mistake twice. Most of you "haters" know nothing about Jesse Benton to validate such "fact" you claim to "espouse".

  • jesse benton screwed up the campaign more than anyone,,,, could dr paul really fire his granddaughters husband,,,,, not really
    ask tom woods about benton,,,, ask penny freeman as she cires over what has transpired,,,,, when you think family should protect you and trust blindly ,,,,, and your 74 and a hectic , grueling campaign timetable,,, this easily can happen and did,,,,,,,,, blind support is ridiculous,,,, and we need to learn what went wrong,, why WHO,,,, and cut off the money hungry

    she did this to celebrate a wonderful man,,,, we all love and enlightened us all,,,, and for her and others to be 30,000 in red for her effort as a result of sabotage,,,, she has every right

    also,,,,, freedom of speech,,, but not for gary johnson,,, we bitch about being uninvited to the big ten, the GOP,,,,, but we do the same to libertarian party and johnson,,, glad we’re being so consistent
    and yes dr paul needs to provide some answers as well,,, we paid for that campaign ,, and we have all added significantly to his bank account,,what benton will inherit
    and i surely hope benton is not walking off with dr paul’s donor list,, which is worth huge money
    tidbits,puzzlepieces,, youtube kokesh, peggy freeman,,, also the benton Trygve Olson saga,,antiwar,,,can ron paul be tamed, and then blackballing kokesh,,, the curious endorsements of terrible candidates,, ted cruz,,,, why for money,,,, to many things are looking real bad,,, all kind of pieces are fitting and this puzzle hurts and looks real bad
    i feel betrayed somewhat for all i did,,, time, effort , money,, and just suckerpunched from hell,,,, what a way to end
    but let’s get it out,,, truth is a wonderful thing good or bad

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