Friday, June 15, 2012

Rand Paul Distances Himself from the Anti-Government Libertarian Wing

Kevin Kervick of the Examminer.com with a very insightful commentary:
In a revealing interview with Kurt Wallace on Daily Paul Radio, Senator Rand Paul...challenged liberty lovers to participate in the political process rather than stay on the sidelines... Senator Paul seemed to be speaking directly to the anarchist wing of the liberty movement. This is a controversial matter. Paul said he believes there are some in the liberty movement that do not vote or do not believe in government at all. He believes those people will never support Governor Romney because they do not support anyone in government. By making this statement, Senator Paul seemed to be distancing himself from the no-government crusaders within the liberty movement, and casting himself as a limited government Republican, which is an important distinction.

In addition to challenging the anarchist wing of the movement to get more involved in constructive reform, Senator Paul also suggested that he believes there is too much all or nothing thinking applied by some of the more vocal revolutionaries in the liberty movement. These revolutionaries are not peaceful philosophical anarchists. They are rabble-rousers that are more motivated by the desire to create or spread controversy than to push for constructive reform...

These statements from Senator Paul acknowledge that there is a split within the liberty movement that may grow larger over time. Senator Paul wants the Ron Paul Revolution to go forward as a pragmatic, limited government, largely Republican, in the system movement. Others may want to go in a more radical, anti-establishment direction because they no longer trust the political system at all or they never did. These two camps may become incompatible over time because their differences are irreconcilable. Such is the stuff of all social revolutions.

36 comments:

  1. Speaking as an anarcho-capitalist myself, as long as our efforts remain nonviolent (the essence of our libertarian philosophy), who cares what anyone in politics says what we should do, or not do to further the cause. Going to the polls on a national level almost always results in electing flip-floppers who toe the party line. Both parties have been owned by anti-human globalists for over 100 years. Being that the United States needs to split up for freedom, I doubt national politics is the way to save this country. Let Rand do his thing. I don't think he will achieve any of his limited government aspirations. After all, local government is far out of control, with a New York City mayor looking to tell all businesses, etc. how to run.

    ReplyDelete
  2. This schism is hardly limited to Rand Paul. We saw it play out as Koch/Reason vs Mises Inst and many others. At issue is the practical strategic question: Is it more effective to agitate for change within the system or from outside it?

    I think it was Rothbard who pointed out that there is no theoretically pure answer to this question.

    I suspect that both approaches are not only necessary but work in concert with one another. The inside-the-system approach goads people toward liberty using language that people are willing to hear while the anarchists act as guiding lights pointing out the direction to go and warning against going in the wrong direction. Over time, as people become more attuned to the language of liberty, the gap between the anarchists and the insiders closes.

    If my theory is close to the truth then the philosophical fights between anarchists and inside the beltway types are mostly silly and, at worst, become counterproductive because the moment that group stops listening to the other group, the process breaks down.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well said, Mark. There has to be efforts "inside" the beast, if there is hope for true liberty again. Unless, all the anarchists are ready to really start shooting...and a lot. I think of myself as an an-cap, so I abhor politics (and politicians) of all stripes, however, I recognize the need for some of them, such as Rand Paul and Ron Paul. I just wish there were far more.

      At times I think of some an-caps, or other anarchists, as petulant children. Just bitching and whining about everything. Guess what? Educating is great. It is extremely useful. However, it is not going to change anything from the inside. We need actual liberty minded candidates to make the changes inside the belly of the beast. I would rather have a gradual transition back to liberty than the alternative of a bloody revolution.

      Delete
    2. Yes. It's what I've come to not like about anarchists. The incessant whining & the circular, unending theorization. No practical application, just theory, theory, unicorns, theory...

      Delete
    3. What do you mean no practical application? We believe in the NAP and stick to it. Everything we do is a practical application of our beliefs. Perhaps you should read more on this topic. I know, you don't want to get into that theorizing and education thing, but it would help you not come off sounding ignorant.

      Delete
    4. Obviously non-aggression is not [sic] practical. We must have violence!

      I don't know when people will realize that the furthest thing from an anarchist is a minarchist. Minarchists truly believe in government as absolutely necessary. Former Marxists like Hoppe and Block are proof that you can get to anarcho-capitalism from the left easier than from the right.

      As far as "liberty minded candidates", what total nonsense. Petulant children? Who is running up the debt? Who is destroying human lives in wars? And you think anarchists complaining or whining is the problem?

      This ^^ is why we can't have nice things.

      Delete
    5. You're right.

      Let's stop theorizing about living your own life according to principles.

      Better to theorize about how Rand Paul will find the magic button that nobody else has managed to find yet, and how he'll manage to use the system in ways contrary to what has been its purpose in the last 200+ years (to grow like a cancer).
      We must theorize as to how he'll do as if he were infiltrating the mafia, turning it into a organization of philanthropy and good will, despite the very purpose of the mafia being power, influence and profit at others' expense.

      But first, we must theorize about how there is a grand libertarian plan behind Rand Paul endorsing a guy that is the polar opposite of liberty.

      Sure, Romney is 98% the opposite of a libertarian. But Obama is 99% the opposite of a libertarian. Now THAT is evil. Rand was smart to understand that.

      Besides, after 4 years of Romney (which Rand has endorsed) proving that it's the same tired old shit as Obama has been, people will be clamoring to vote in another Republican. Makes sense.

      Delete
  3. People who supported Ron Paul for resident can be, at best, minarchists. They cannot be anarchists, because they support SOME form of government, with Paul at the helm.

    It sounds like Rand is appealing to that sentiment. Small government with responsible ledership. This, to me, is fitting with libertarianism so long as the non-agressino principle is followed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, promoting small government by endorsing and campaigning for Mr. Big Government Flip Flopper himself. Perfectly logical. LOL!!

      Puhhleeease!

      Delete
    2. Let's consider this a welcome transition. Definitely better than what we have now.

      Delete
    3. “People who supported Ron Paul for resident can be, at best, minarchists. They cannot be anarchists, because they support SOME form of government….”

      I don't think that’s entirely correct. I support/have supported Ron Paul's campaign, but would describe myself as a philosophical anarchist. The reason I supported Paul isn’t because I want him to be president, but because his campaigns have helped to educate millions of people on the philosophy of liberty. I came to my Rothbardian view through Paul’s 2008 campaign and imagine there are plenty of others who did the same.

      For what it’s worth, Tom Woods seems to have a similar view. His basic position is that most people tend not to think about political issues except around election time, so if there aren’t libertarian candidates at least putting out ads, getting TV interviews or trying to get in debates, then there really isn’t a better way to reach these people.

      I’d prefer no government, but I also realize that for all the great work that LRC, Mises.org, and others do for advancing freedom, political action is a much easier way to attract an audience. If nothing else, political campaigns are a way of channeling people to places like the above mentioned organizations.

      Delete
    4. "Small government with responsible leadership. This, to me, is fitting with libertarianism so long as the non-aggression principle is followed".

      It is possible to have law within the non-aggression principle, but not government.

      Government requires a gang of perverts who violently enforce their own monopoly on the use of force and the making of law within a given territory. The purpose of government is to serve that ruling class of perverts. It never works out well. A gang of perverts who use guns and claim to be altruistic are liars.

      Delete
    5. Huh? That is just wrong. First, an anarchist can support a guy that would increase our freedom even if he isn't going to eliminate government. Why the hell wouldn't it be wrong for us to vote for more freedom simply because it's not total freedom. That's just ignorant.

      Second, small government with responsible leadership doesn't follow the NAP. It would be better than we currently have but it still violates the NAP when the government takes my money through the threat of force to pay for their limited form of slavery.

      Delete
    6. "Small government with responsible ledership."

      Name ONE leader that has proven to be "responsible" in the small government, libertarian sense.

      Maybe you haven't noticed, but the constitution and bill of rights were supposed to guarantee "responsible" leadership and small government.
      And even with those 'guarantees' all you got was con-men and legalized criminality.

      America was an experiment of small government with responsible leadership that has failed horribly.
      Just accept the fact that responsible leadership is an oxymoron if you combine it with an institution that has a monopoly on coercion and violence.

      Delete
  4. Wait ... a Senator isn't an anarchist ... stop the presses!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL...That was my first thought, too. Funny stuff.

      Delete
  5. The problem is Rand is clearly lying to make Romney look better, and that's unacceptable. Otherwise I'd really not care about this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Let him put lipstick on that pig-- the piggyness remains.
      So-to-speak.

      Delete
  6. I think it matters what your "time preference" is. We can wait and see or we can get involved in whatever way we are able. The viability of both are always in question. I wish we could have Dr Ron Paul leading the charge well into the future. It would not be prudent to expect that for much longer. As long as Rand doesn't loose his soul, I'll support his efforts. I will write in Ron on the 2012 ballet, that is a given. But I will watch and hope that Rand can prove to be worthy of our support. For some people not participating is "doing something". I can understand that point of view. But I sort of lean to the side that if I'm gonna be stuck with this damn system, I'm going to make it as difficult for "them" as possible and hope that in time, our views become more common place and accepted. The reason I have hope, is because we are right, we've been proven right time and again. We've come a long way just in the last few years. I can believe that it was all for nothing. Liberty will prevail only if we all keep up our fights, in whatever way we choose to fight. Get involved or Go Gault both have a place. I choose to see Rand as getting involved, until we can pin him down as being unworthy of our support, I will give him a pass.

    ReplyDelete
  7. You've got to look at what Rand does rather than what he says. The only way a strong libertarian is ever going to break through politically is either by subterfuge or outright lying - which I'm actually fine with in this context. I'd even go so far as to endorse vote fraud if it meant Ron Paul would be elected President. We are battling against evil people, and need to use every means available to get them off our backs.

    For now, I'm willing to wait and see how Rand actually votes in the Senate before writing him off because of this endorsement or that statement to a reporter. If he votes for the next bailout or the next war, then he'll clearly be someone the liberty movement needs to avoid. Until that happens, I will hope that he's just using rhetoric that he knows won't offend the establishment in the hopes that he can sneak through and perhaps even take the presidency.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It doesn't matter how Rand votes because everyone knows it won't matter so it's politically safe for him to vote. Just as it's politically expedient for sponsors to support his or Ron's bills, they know it won't pass but at least they can say they tried. Tried is exactly that. Trying to pick up a pencil does not result in actually picking up a pencil, picking up the pencil does.

      Delete
    2. I'll judge Rand on two things. How much he increases my liberty and how many people he convinces to support libertarianism and Austrian economics. Voting on a bill that will never pass doesn't impress me. Now, voting on sanctions on Iran is troubling. Not only does it reduce liberty in the world but it doesn't convince anybody of libertarianism or Austrian economics. Same with endorsing Mitt Romney.

      Delete
  8. When Rand Paul was entering politics, the campaign was careful to dispel the rumor the he was named for Ayn Rand. I'm beginning to think he was named after the Rand Corporation.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. His wife nicknamed him Rand.

      Delete
    2. I think that's what he was hinting to by "the campaign was careful to dispel"

      Delete
  9. I'm still not sure what to think of all this, but isn't this the same brave soul who stood up to the TSA not too long ago? At this point, would he just let them do what they wished, then write a moderate op-ed piece about how "they went a little too far in my opinion"?

    ReplyDelete
  10. I wonder just how much of Rand's strategy is impacted by watching his father. It took Dr. Paul THIRTY years of principled voting in congress, THREE presidential runs and MOST IMPORTANTLY the INTERNET to gather the following he has now. And even after all of that, he still gets only a small percentage of the popular vote.

    Certainly Dr. Paul has inspired a great many to educate themselves and fight for liberty, but maybe Rand views his dad's inability to impact change within the system as somewhat of a failure.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You just don't get it. Watch the second video again. He is acting JUST LIKE all the other politicians. "Make an appointment" and so on. This guys is a traitor to the liberty movement. The said thing is that it is so BLATANTLY obvious and yet people want to pretend its "just being smart". LOL! Please.

      Delete
    2. Hi Mike - I haven't watched the video yet. However, I do agree with a prior poster that we need to watch what he does / how he votes, etc before jumping to conclusions.

      Delete
  11. Can we all please acknowledge that RAND Paul is not and will never be RON Paul, and just move on? Think of Rand as just another (R) senator who just happens to publicly espouse some view consistent with a libertarian perspective. Doing this will bring to a minimum all of the "SHOCKING: RAND is not RON!!" stories that have been proliferate as of late...

    ReplyDelete
  12. The beast can NOT be 'tamed' from the inside. The nature of the State is not one of limited existence. The nature of the State is to both preserve itself and to expand its reach. As Lysander Spooner said;


    "But whether the Constitution really be one thing, or another, this much is certain - that it has either authorized such a government as we have had, or has been powerless to prevent it. In either case, it is unfit to exist."

    There is not a historical precedent for a State being birthed and successfully existing as a guardian of individual freedom. Human nature, with all the trappings of power won't allow it.

    People clamoring for a political solution today will be wishing for the same thing when their grandchildren are adults. Sure, there may be brief moments of respite from the usurpation of wealth and freedoms of the citizens, but the State will never relent.

    ReplyDelete
  13. -"Senator Paul also suggested that he believes there is too much all or nothing thinking applied by some of the more vocal revolutionaries in the liberty movement."-

    In order for a principle to exist it has to be all or nothing.

    Every violation of principle has to comes with a corresponding pragmatic excuse. And the minute you put pragmatism over principle, you lose your moral base.

    The end never justifies the means. It can only do so if you live your life in the middle-ground between right and wrong. Government must use force to exist, and therefore can only exist in this middle-ground.

    Anything less than a completely voluntaryist society based on the zero-aggression principle is immoral.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I would say a very large portion of the Ron Paul Revolution is minarchist, not anarchist. We still have common goals like ending the Fed, IRS, Wars, and Welfare State. I think we can work together on these goals. Begrudgingly endorsing Romney is one thing, but Rand went out of his way to praise Romney on Hannity no less and there's no place for that.

    ReplyDelete
  15. A gang of perverts engages in mass murder (which they call 'defense' and 'collateral damage'), slavery (selective service), extortion (revenue service), and counterfeiting (Federal Reserve monetary policy) and one of the perverted gang members who just rode to fame on his father's reputation and then sabotaged his father's campaign, complains that some people think the elections - which are run by the his gang of perverts - just might not be honest enough to vote in. Ron Paul should be ashamed to have raised such a silly hollow moron.

    ReplyDelete