Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Rand Paul on the Daily Show with Jon Stewart.

Rand Paul's extended interview (in 3 parts) with Jon Stewart is here.

This is an improvement over Rand's appearance on the David Letterman Show. I give him a B+ and not higher, only because I know in the future he will even get stronger in getting the libertarian message out.  Overall though, he does a good job, though it is a little dry.


  1. Wenzel,

    Are you sure he is going to get better at getting the "libertarian message" out? I thought he had made it quite clear in the past that he is not a libertarian and isn't on board with the "libertarian message" as a result?

  2. Taylor,

    His message IS libertarian. The difference between Ron and Rand isn't the end goal, it's the idea on how to change the opinion of the public. Ron takes the hard-abolitionist approach. Rand is more utilitarian in his approach.

  3. Hi The_Mick,

    I define a libertarian as a person who consistently upholds the Non-Aggression Principle in his intellectual and social life. The Non-Aggression Principle states "It is wrong to initiate the use of physical force against another individual."

    Please note, I said consistently. Not some of the time, not most of the time, but consistently, implying all of the time, with no exceptions made.

    Would you say Rand Paul's message is consistent with this principle?

  4. There is barely a libertarian message here. You have to win the argument on moral terms. The utilitarian aspect is not good enough, people are OK with inefficiencies if they perceive those inefficiencies as better morally.

  5. Next time, Senator Paul needs to give an example of a government agency whose approach is terrible in the eyes of all.

    He should use the TSA as his centerpiece example of terrible service (searching mothers and grandmothers), high cost, and ineffectiveness (cite all the failures to detect). He should contrast it with how private entities would operate (I think I read this on Gary North): airlines would guaranteee passengers against loss of life for $1MM, and their insurers would ensure that the airlines put in effective security measures.

  6. Fail. He actually ended up agreeing with Jon about just reducing govt in size rather than taking a sledgehammer to it.

  7. Anon,

    Everything was good except your "would" should be a "could." You have no idea how private entrepreneurs WOULD behave in the future if they were free to do so, however you can logically stipulate how they might, therefore how they COULD.

  8. found his responses really wishy washy and annoying to be quite honest... This is especially true when he spoke about the housing bubble. He just mentioned the Fed as an afterthought !! ...

  9. I thought Jon Stewart came across as much stronger. He kept saying the government has really done a lot to help us. We've come really far in two hundred years. Capitalism is rapacious.

    What did Rand Paul say to really counter this?

    I think about it this way, capitalism has improved our standards of living so that most of us don't want children to work anymore. Capitalism has improved our standard of living so that most of us want to live in cleaner environments. The capitalism wealth has given us has increased our expectations for the quality of life we want to have. So companies have complied. The government didn't obtain these ends. It's frivolous to suggest this. In most cases the government was late to the party, with regulations that by the time they were passe were irrelevant. (Or even to a certain extent exported the problem to foreign countries where some of these issues still exist, we just don't have to see them.)

    So Jon Steward couldn't be *more* wrong.

    But Rand didn't really try to throw an wrench into Jon Stewards argument that government did make these things better.

    The Federal Reserve took a bad situation, crony capitalism, and made it worse. The government was already involved via regulation in the economy before the creation of the Federal Reserve ...

    And, of course, Rand Paul would never go there, but I would say that government policy has been horrendous towards black Americans. On the one hand you have the democrats subsidizing poverty, basically bribing lower income black Americans for their votes via welfare. On the other hand, you have Republicans waging a drug war in which far more blacks are arrested and incarcerated than anyone else. It's a horrendously *bad* situation. But, hey, we have an upper class black president so racism must be in the past, and that's thanks to the government …

    There is Jon Stewart saying, we just need to brush up our policies a little bit better. And Rand Paul kind of nods and says, we need a little balance.


    Maybe, maybe a C- because he didn't actually mess up and look bad, so he passed, but he needs to work a lot harder if he wants to promote change in the right direction.