They are persistent. Their intellect isn’t fully developed. And they crave attention. No, I am not talking about children. I am talking about Ron Paul supporters, and they are everywhere.
They have written Opinions pieces for this paper. They have haphazardly placed bumper stickers in declaration of their support for the “Ron Paul Revolution.”
The “Ron Paul Revolution,” his supporters say, is based on the classical conservative philosophy of libertarianism. Pure libertarianism, as Paul’s platform is sometimes called, is rooted in the idea that government is bad and the free market is good.
Government regulation, Paul says, is holding America back. Is it the Food and Drug Administration workers that test beef for Mad Cow Disease that are preventing American greatness? Is it providing Social Security to the elderly that goes against the Republican ideals on which our nation was founded?
Regardless of your opinion of Paul, it is nearly impossible to deny his grassroots support. His supporters are young and vocal and one of their selling points is that Paul is different from the neoliberal Democrats and the neoconservative Republicans who are running for president.
Paul is different, but not necessarily better. I suspect Paul supporters are attracted to his version of libertarianism, not because they believe it, but more likely, because they simply dislike Hillary Clinton Democrats and George W. Bush Republicans.
Pure libertarianism, however, is not an intelligent consensus position. When Paul dismantles the “American Empire,” he is going to leave only the marketplace to decide how people live. If you are unable to find a job, you starve.
If you are sick and cannot afford private healthcare, you die. So, while Paul may in theory be advocating personal liberty, the reality is in Paul’s America, the freedoms you have will be determined by your wealth.
Paul’s platform, he says, dates back to the American Revolution. The Founding Fathers established this country as a republic, and it is corrupt politicians who have since abandoned these traditions.
Paul claims American leaders have exercised powers not explicitly given to them in the Constitution. The Founding Fathers, however, did not have a uniform interpretation of the Constitution.
Immediately following the passing of the Constitution, Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton debated whether the creation of a national bank fell under the authority provided in the Constitution.
Despite Paul’s deification of the Founding Fathers, history tells us not all of these men were so saintly. They massacred Native Americans. They owned slaves. They did not have all the answers. Neither does Paul.