A small, unassuming doctor from Texas might actually have a chance to win the Republican Nomination. Or does he?
Like almost all of the other folks in the Republican race for the President, Ron Paul is going to expirience his "bump." His Libertarian message has spread far and wide, especially with the folks who agree with the Tea Party movement. Can his, anti-regulation, anti-tax + fed, anti-war, and anti-drug prohibition ass get elected?
Probably not. Why? I'll give you five reasons.
1. Everyone hates him. Every other Republican political candidate, no matter the level of bat-shit crazy (Romney rating a 4, a record low, and Bachmann of course, defining the category), Ron Paul is looked on like a second class candidate even though he probably has more legislative expirience than most of the candidates combined. There are people who flock to his message, and Republican party leadership are not those people.
2. He's a libertarian. This follows closely reasoning #1. Like a lot of political outlyers within the American political system, Libertarians have it rough. Their extreme views on regulation and very reactionary views on states rights would usually give many everyday Conservatives quite the boner. This is not the case. Libertarians also have states rights concepts that apply to emergency aid and disaster relief. I don't know many Conservatives that enjoy to clean up after a hurricane without some assistance. Which brings me to an interesting point as well: why Republicans have this magical belief that there should be these huge cuts in spending, except when said Republican's Unemployment benefits, Disaster relief, Medicare, or Social Security comes into question. But... A topic for another day.
3. He's (essentially) pro-drugs. Ron Paul has the right idea. Legalize most drugs and let the market regulate their selling. If individual states want to regulate the market, they may. Since the days of Nixon, Drugs have been he cause of every awful event in human history. They make ruffians out of the rabble by lowering inhabitions and destroying people's bodies. Nevermind that most illegal drugs today either had or have some sort of benefit, or are less dangerous that legal drugs (pharmaceuticals, alcohol, cigarettes). This is a nail in the coffin for folks of most religious persuasians in the nation. This stigma of drug use is essentially shoved down America's throats, which in turn is able to scrape of a majority of people together than enforce the taboos of illegal drug abuse and societal damage by these same drugs. Sorry Ron, God hates drug users.
4. He hates the Federal Reserve. Say what you will about the Fed, it has some sneaky tactics it uses to bulwark international banks and large mutlinational corporations. It writes the checks of the National Government. Now, so of this needs to be restricted. The Fed (like much of Europe) is trying to stabilize the economy in a bailout/low interest rate mentality. This is an EXTREME distortion to the market, and it has led to wealth in the US to flow in reverse (back up top). Ron Paul is setting his sights on the bulky bank of banks to help the American people. You know who else is? Barney Frank, the self-proclaimed Socialist from Vermont. What don't Republicans want? Bipartisanship. Forget the need to reach out across party lines to address important issues, Republicans demand cohesion! Paul will not usually fall behind party lines, either, but that issue was discussed earlier. The conservatives in this country have addressed their cheif concern: To consolidate power. They have done this within the existing structures of the government. They are tied to the government as much as the businesses are, and businesses are connected at the hip. Ron Paul is suggesting a separation of the Government from Business. Such things are blasphemy.
5. He hates war. This one might be the most important. Ron Paul has specifically said that war is not the answer for the United States. He has spoken out against American involvement in other nations, and specifically denounces the use of drone warfare. This might be the part of his campaign that strikes the Republican electorate as un-American. Americans love war! We crave it! It helps us establish national identity and gives us the illusion of security! Not only that, but it furthers our poisitions in the world. Did anyone happen to notice what the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan did?
It put Iran between Iraq and a hard place. The Republican (and to a smaller extend the Democratic) propaganda machine turns. Really it's just an American war machine. This is what Ron Paul wants to stop. This ongoing war machine. Let's not forget that Military spending is government spending. The fact it should take priority to other spending, is, controversial to say the least. Republicans won't allow the conversation to occur unless the answer is "more funding."
So.. Ron Paul... I like the guy. I think he would be someone decent for our nation, but I also think the need for a strong, central government is something that Libertarians don't understand. The free market cannot correct all inequities equally. Capitialism fails. But there are important lessons we can learn from Ron Paul.
1. If a Market exists, making it illegal will only hurt the nation that regulated it.
2. The Federal Reserve issues money and stimulus for economic and political reasons. Business are part of the government sphere of influence, and vice versa.
3. The Republican voting base might need to take some time and use logic. If they don't want a Mormon, they should probably take a Libertarians and shut up about it. Beggars can't be choosers.