On Ron Paul & Libertarianism
Iâ€™ve been a big L Libertarian for close to 30 years. I registered Republican to support Ron Paul. Every time I hear Libertarians quibbling about minutia over Ron Paul, I canâ€™t help but think of an exchange from Monty Pythonâ€™s Life of Brian movie (I know, I know, quoting this movie automatically nullifies any credibility I might have hadâ€¦still):
BRIAN: Are you the Judean Peopleâ€™s Front?
REG: F*ck off!
REG: Judean Peopleâ€™s Front. Weâ€™re the Peopleâ€™s Front of Judea! Judean Peopleâ€™s Front. Cawk.
REG: Listen. If you really wanted to join the P.F.J., youâ€™d have to really hate the Romans.
BRIAN: I do!
REG: Oh, yeah? How much?
BRIAN: A lot!
REG: Right. Youâ€™re in. Listen. The only people we hate more than the Romans are the f*cking Judean Peopleâ€™s Front.
FRANCIS: And the Judean Popular Peopleâ€™s Front.
P.F.J.: Yeah. Oh, yeah. Splitters. Splittersâ€¦
LORETTA: And the Peopleâ€™s Front of Judea.
P.F.J.: Yeah. Splitters. Splittersâ€¦
LORETTA: The Peopleâ€™s Front of Judea. Splitters.
REG: Weâ€™re the Peopleâ€™s Front of Judea!
LORETTA: Oh. I thought we were the Popular Front.
REG: Peopleâ€™s Front! C-huh.
FRANCIS: Whatever happened to the Popular Front, Reg?
REG: Heâ€™s over there.
Ron Paul has done more to bring libertarian issues into the national spotlight than any single person in my lifetime. The term â€œlibertarianâ€ is actually in vogue. Can you believe that? More and more people are claiming to be libertarians, even those who might have only a couple convictions that are in line with purist libertarian thought.
The only reason I shifted to the Republican Party is because I finally have the opportunity to support a libertarian who has a chance of winning. It wonâ€™t be â€œeasyâ€, but even â€œpossibleâ€ is refreshing. The Libertarian Party is still a party of principle, but it has trouble even getting candidates on the ballot in all 50 states (here in the free country whose ideals weâ€™re exporting via invasion). Thatâ€™s why Paul has no plans to run on a third party ticket.
Every day, more people come to realize that this is a guy who is principled, honest, consistent, and will support the constitutional liberties that founded the nation. He will not be â€œin-stepâ€ with all Libertarians. No one can be. Detractors will continue to sneer; this is national politics. But Paulâ€™s character weathers each cheap shot admirably.
The visibility Paul is getting will reap benefits for libertarians and Libertarians for decades to come.
Exactly. But do note…he’s not pulling people toward Republican politics. It’s Libertarianism within a Republican vessel, and is that sustainable? Well, you all know my opinion about what Paul should do, and it rhymes with 3rd party.
By the way, here’s that scene from Life of Brian.