When I covered the story about Rachel Maddow calling out Rand Paul’s plagiarism of the Wikipedia page for the movie Gattaca, I didn’t think it was a huge deal—just a little interesting.
To be honest, I was still a little shocked at the outlandish fear-mongering he was perpetuating with his pathetic attempt to link advances in science, paired with abortion, to claim that some day we might try to create some kind of “master human race.”
Then came Senator Paul’s response to Maddow’s story, where he essentially tried to pin the media backlash he had experienced due to his plagiarism on her. He basically claimed that she had been out to get him for years and this was just another example of her trying to slander his name. Because, after all, she’s the one who forced him to plagiarize a speech from Wikipedia, right?
He actually went as far as to say he had never “intentionally” plagiarized anything and that her report equated to something of a “duel challenge.” Alluding to the days where people in disputes sometimes settled them with a “duel to the death.”
But that wasn’t all. Shortly after his attack on Maddow, another story broke where evidence showed that not only had Paul plagiarized the Wikipedia page of the movie Gattaca, but he had done so with articles written by the Associated Press as well. The story was accompanied by evidence that surfaced about transcripts vanishing from Paul’s website of speeches he had given in the past. The removal of these transcripts would obviously make it much harder for anyone who might be investigating the history of Paul’s speeches to pinpoint more plagiarism.
Following that revelation, there was another story about parts of a book he had written being plagiarized. Honestly, I don’t believe that story was completely accurate because he did give credit in footnotes, he just hadn’t properly cited the Heritage study. Besides, can we really call Heritage a credible source for anything? So I basically dismissed that report.
Mind you, these are stories that have broken in just the last week.
Now there’s a whole new report from Buzzfeed about an op-ed Rand Paul wrote for the Washington Times which is filled with blatant plagiarism from an article written a week earlier by Dan Stewart. But not only was his op-ed plagiarized, he apparently gave testimony in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee on September 16 using the sections he had copied from Stewart’s article and put in his op-ed.
In the original article, Stewart wrote:
It’s the automatic imposition of a minimum number of years in prison for specific crimes — usually related to drugs. By design, mandatory sentencing laws take discretion away from prosecutors and judges so as to impose harsh sentences, regardless of circumstances.
Mandatory sentencing began in the 1970s as a response to a growing drug-and-crime epidemic, and over the decades has put hundreds of thousands of people behind bars for drug possession and sale, and other non-violent crimes. Since mandatory sentencing began, America’s prison population has quadrupled, to 2.4 million. America now jails a higher percentage of its citizens than any other country, including China and Iran, at the staggering cost of $80 billion a year.
Is that a good thing?
Most public officials — including liberals, conservatives, and libertarians — have decided that it’s not. At least 20 states, both red and blue, have reformed their mandatory sentencing laws in some way, and Congress is considering a bipartisan bill that would do the same for federal crimes.
And Paul wrote in his op-ed almost a week later:
Mandatory-minimum sentences automatically impose a minimum number of years in prison for specific crimes — usually related to drugs. By design, mandatory-sentencing laws take discretion away from prosecutors and judges so as to impose harsh sentences, regardless of circumstances.
Since mandatory sentencing began in the 1970s in response to a growing drug-and-crime epidemic, America’s prison population has quadrupled, to 2.4 million. America now jails a higher percentage of its citizens than any other country, including China and Iran, at the staggering cost of $80 billion a year. Drug offenders in the United States spend more time under the criminal justice system’s formal control than drug offenders anywhere else in the world.
Most public officials — liberals, conservatives and libertarians — have decided that mandatory-minimum sentencing is unnecessary. At least 20 states, both red and blue, have reformed their mandatory-sentencing laws in some way, and Congress is considering a bipartisan bill that would do the same for federal crimes.
Hell, not only is the majority of Paul’s section taken from Stewart’s piece word for word, even the punctuation format is exactly the same. But that’s not all, there’s more.
In another section of the original article, Stewart wrote:
When a friend asked John Horner if he could buy some painkillers, the 46-year-old father of three didn’t see a problem. The Osceola County, Fla., resident had been taking prescribed painkillers for years after losing his eye in an accident, and agreed to sell his friend, “Matt,” four unused bottles. After the pills exchanged hands, Horner discovered that “Matt” was in fact a police informant, and he was charged with dealing drugs. At the advice of his public defender, Horner pleaded guilty, and was later sentenced to the mandatory minimum of 25 years in jail. He will be 72 by the time he is released, and his three young children will have grown up without him. “Matt,” who turned out to have a long history of drug offenses, was more fortunate — he received a reduced sentence of just 18 months after informing on Horner, and is now free.
And from Paul’s op-ed:
John Horner was a 46-year-old father of three when he sold some of his prescription painkillers to a friend. His friend turned out to be a police informant, and he was charged with dealing drugs. Horner pleaded guilty and was later sentenced to the mandatory minimum of 25 years in prison.
John will be 72 years old by the time he is released, and his three young children will have grown up without him. The informant, who had a long history of drug offenses, was more fortunate — he received a reduced sentence of just 18 months, and is now free.
Again, not just nearly identical wording, but even the techniques for which the punctuation is used is identical. That tells me not only did Rand Paul plagiarize Dan Stewart’s article, he basically copied and pasted it into his own. And he did so without giving it a single shred of credit by way of a citation or link back to the original source.
Now I know some won’t think this is that big of a deal. However, with these continued examples emerging where Rand Paul has plagiarized time and time again, along with the fact his website is now deleting past transcripts of many of his speeches, this definitely shows a pattern where Paul has stolen the work done by others and passed it off as his own.
Then when you recall Paul’s comments where he claimed he would never intentionally plagiarize anyone, he’s obviously lying about that as well.
I’ve always said that large indiscretions exhibited by an individual obviously shows signs of other flaws in character. I mean, that’s just obvious. But when someone goes so far as to lie this often, and rip off the work of others this blatantly, to me that shows a real deep-seated mental condition that exists within Senator Paul’s head.
And something tells me this is just the start. The more people keep digging, the worse it’s most likely going to get.
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