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Why the Libertarians must draft Ron Paul

by Kevin Tuma

courtesy of Kevin TumaIt’s prognostication time: I will now indulge in egotistical predictions.

I predicted, in one of my first online columns, that if the GOP did not turn back to the old Right and stop abrogating the Constitution, the party would “reap the whirlwind”. It took a little longer than I thought, but it happened…and indeed, it is still happening. If the tea leaves did not reveal a furious conservative electorate, GOP senators would not be scrambling to confront the President on his silly immigration schemes, or to undercut the Bush war in Iraq. They smell blood…and it’s their own.

However, the neo-con dominated GOP is not going to remake itself, cast away all its corruption, and start practicing Jeffersonianism just because of some little thing like staring into the dark, gaping maw of a political abyss.

You see, sometimes people “stay the course” because they are bought and paid for. If they can’t afford to have principles, they also can’t afford to act in their own best interests. So they often clumsily make themselves targets for reformers, like Congressman Ron Paul.

Yet despite their ongoing political collapse, Republicans in Washington are not going to allow a man who is antithetical to their entire post-911 playbook to seize the reins of the process, and march to victory in their own party. The ability to manipulate hundreds of millions in cash flow and to massage the news media can easily insure an ability to fend off candidates who aren’t “team players”.

Hence, I will predict the following:

(1) Ron Paul will not win the GOP nomination, no matter how great his grassroots popularity;

(2) The GOP presidential nominee will be an insider, a past or present member of the Council on Foreign Relations, most likely also a Big Oil “company man”, a photo-op Christian, and somebody who is about as genuinely conservative as Che Guevara.

And (3), no matter what sophistry the Karl Rove types pull off, said nominee will lose to Hillary Clinton, John Edwards, or whomever the Dems choose as their pinko du jour. It could be virtually any candidate—it could be Michael Moore in a tutu riding a unicycle with a pet monkey as his Veep. All the Democratic nominee will have to do next time is show up. The Republican Party will lose the White House. They have brought it on themselves. And it is pretty irrevocable at this point.

Ron Paul knows all this–and he is one sharp cookie. If he knows enough to understand that the other candidates are doomed to lose, I’d think he also knows enough to guess that the party elites will never choose him as a standard-bearer. His supporters seem utterly oblivious to this.

Ron Paul’s GOP candidacy is doomed to fail because of hidden agendas in The Party Formerly Known As Conservative. Yes, Paul is the most exciting individual to appear in presidential politics since early Ronald Reagan. The whole point being lost by those who wish upon Paul’s star is that the GOP does not want such men in power! If Ronald Reagan were reborn somehow into a new presidential candidate in 2007, FOX News and Sean Hannity would almost certainly be throwing rocks at him. Barry Goldwater would similarly be written off as a “weirdo”.

The party did not originally coronate Bush and Cheney because they thought Bush and Cheney would be popular with the public. They put Bush-Cheney in power because of an agenda. And it isn’t conspiracy theory. I am referring specifically to the neo-cons, the globalists, Big Oil, and the military-industrial complex. These elite policy groups, wholly in charge of the Republican Party, would rather lose the election to Hillary Clinton than put someone in office who believes in civil liberties, laissez-faire capitalism, abolishing Income Taxes, cutting federal spending, closing military bases abroad, and restoration of the US Constitution.

Hence, Ron Paul has no more chance to be the Republican presidential nominee than Eliot P. Ness would have had to replace Al Capone as capo of the Chicago mob.

Libertarians are dreamers. This is both a blessing and a curse. But I’m frankly surprised at the number of libertarians who actually believe Ron Paul will be our next president with an “R” after his name. I would have thought that as cynical as libertarians seem to be, and as intelligent as most libertarians are, they would, collectively, be incapable of such Jiminy Cricket naiveté.

The reason Ron Paul must be invited to run on the Libertarian party ticket is because it is now time for the libertarian movement to grow up. Infantilism has marked the libertarian movement for over 30 years, and the party in question truly seems to be no closer to buying a clue than it was back in the salad days of the War On Drugs.

The mature Ron Paul is a natural leader. Libertarians have never had one of those, and will never succeed until they do have one. It is therefore imperative that they avoid letting him slip through their fingers.

In truth, the Libertarian Party needs him a lot more than he needs the party. If he runs as an “independent” with no named party, he can still do well on the campaign trail. His fame and effectiveness have already transcended anything the Libertarian Party might have ever done. Don’t get me wrong. Libertarianism is gaining philosophical force every day, regardless of how trivial and inconsequential its political party may be. But we are now reaching an important conjunction of history. The US public has never been more disenchanted with the two-party system. Pax Americana is a humiliating failure. The United States has thrown away its image in the world as a symbol of freedom and justice. And last but not least, gasoline is consistently over $2.75 a gallon–which is absolutely breaking the backs of our suburbanite, credit card-addicted masses. Add very high taxes to that mix, and you have an extremely disgruntled angry middle-class workforce that will vote its pocketbook in 2008. At least the extant members of said workforce who are, in fact, legal US citizens. (Illegal aliens generally do not vote…yet.)

Big Oil is in check. Our military empire is a laughingstock–the US has tried and failed to control a pee-diddly tinpot Middle-eastern country that has been bombed and starved into submission since 1991. People all over the world who do not loathe us, fear us-but the majority loathe us. Co-dependent as most Americans are, this grinds at national self-esteem. Both the Democrats and Republicans look like a pack of loons where the sagging economy is concerned-both have immense, ambitious schemes for wasting trillions of tax dollars, while most voters squeak paycheck to paycheck. People are fed up. Worst of all for the elites, the Internet is now replacing the old establishment media as the New Press with the general public, which means, as Douglas Adams might say, “their brains may start working”.

The time is pretty ripe. Libertarianism has its historic leader in Mr. Paul. The GOP establishment will cast him out or cheat him of the nomination as surely as the sun sets in the West.

Everyone in Libertarian circles should get ready to take it to the next logical step.

 

Kevin Tuma is a political artist and an Internet columnist.     Kevin’s columns have been previously published at Ether Zone, Sierra Times, Rational Review, Rense.com, and Liberty For All.net, and his artwork has appeared in the pages–and on the covers of–The American Conservative and Regulation-The CATO Review of Business and Government.   Kevin Tuma can be reached at kevintuma@yahoo.com.

14 Responses to Why the Libertarians must draft Ron Paul

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  3. Brandybuck

    July 3, 2007 at 3:23 pm

    I respectfully disagree. Ron Paul has done more with an (R) after his name in six months what the Libertarian Party has done in thirty years. Let him get through to the nominating convention before you write him off as a political failure to put out to stud in the LP.

    The LP has demonstrated that it would rather please the anarchist and objectivist party purists than in actually doing anything constructive to advance the cause of liberty. If you are truly interested in liberty, then leave the LP and start working towards that goal from within the Democrat and Republican parties.

  4. Steve Trinward

    July 3, 2007 at 3:45 pm

    I have no argument with the contention (or the fact?) that Ron Paul is not at all likely to be the next President. (Even if ALL the laws of the universe suddenly reversed, he won the GOP nomination, things are too screwed up to stop a D of some stripe as the nation “switches parties” …)

    However, I see real value in his running now, and in getting as many people as possible (who can do so without endangering their own party status, if any) to vote for him in the primaries, and to forward every speech-blurb they encounter to all the people they know with a pulse and a clue …

    The chance of seeing a significant vote percentage may be minimal, but it is there; if it shows at all on the radar, this would logically lead to R^P speaking at their convention, even having a small say in who the ticket actually is, and perhaps even affecting the platform issues a bit.

    Once it is clear that he is out of the running a “draft Ron for LP” effort is not out of the quesiotn, but I doubt he wants to play there anymore

  5. badmedia

    July 3, 2007 at 7:39 pm

    I vote and support the candidate, not the party. But I will say this – If ron paul wasn’t running as a republican, he would have not gotten in the debates, he would have not gotten any media coverage at all.

    As someone who is a libertarian, I think you would understand and realize the extra difficulties a 3rd party candidate has.

    Plus, he fits the bill of what the republican should be. Need I remind you that the libertarian movement generally started from the same people who started conservatism.

    IMO, those who don’t support Ron Paul right now, do so not because they don’t believe in what he says, but because they don’t think he can win. And I’ve seen many of them change their minds once someone they respect jumps the fence.

    I have considered myself to be, and voted libertarian for the past years. But mark my words – The LP WILL NOT get any more support for me if they can’t drop party lines and start promoting liberty instead of the party and come out in favor of Ron Paul. Lets hope the LP party does’t make the same mistakes as those neocons who “stay the course”.

    On the flip side, if Ron Paul doesn’t get the RP nomination, I will be extremely disappointed if he doesn’t stay in as independent considering the support he has gotten.

    If the LP wishes to keep me as a supporter, then they need to fight for liberty and not a party.

  6. Ronald Howarth

    July 3, 2007 at 9:27 pm

    Contrary to what we have been told man is basically good and man wants to do the right action. Others know what is right and will cast their vote accordingly. By continuing to spread the word about Ron more and more become informed. This action will turn the tide and he will win.
    Knowledge is power.

  7. Sean Haugh

    July 4, 2007 at 3:14 am

    I love it. I am not endorsing anything necessarily, but if the LP does draft Ron Paul and he accepts, we can say it started right here at LFA. :)

    If it actually works out that way, Ron Paul will be riding his own media, he won’t need to depend on the LP’s media strength alone.

  8. bill

    July 4, 2007 at 11:17 am

    Hopefully there are many others thinking this way, including the RP campaign. I have never heard and read the word “Constitution” in all media formats over the past 6 weeks than the past 20 years. With the possible inclusion of F. Thompson now, and the envoking of the “Constitution” from all corners of the GOP, it has become apparant to me the GOP knows they are finished in 2008. I agree with you 100%, the GOP, or rather the moneychangers who control them, are conceding victory to the Democrats, also under control. Obvious from their actions which completly insult the intellegence of the majority. They will not allow Ron Paul to win the nomination. “They” want to maintain the agenda and can continue this under a controlled Democrat.

    Ron Paul’s campaign of truth through his uncomparable integrity has awoken a slumbering nation of debt ridden, tax paying slaves. The clouds are clearing and the full power of the sun is coming into view.

    I know RP has stated he would not change parties and run independent or libertarian. I hope this statement was simply part of the campaign strategy. I have to believe RP and his campaign were fully aware the GOP nomination was not attainable and used the GOP to gain entrance into the debates to spread the truth and obtain any and all media coverage.

    There is not a single candidate from either party that compares to Dr. Paul. Throw out those who belong to the CFR and RP is a shoe in. The people need continued education, not about Ron Paul or the rhetorical promises of the other candidates, but the “agenda”. Without an understanding of the “agenda” Ron Paul cannot become our next President. With knowledge and understanding, Ron Paul’s voice will appeal to those informed.

    I hope the campaign knows how to play chess.

  9. Craig

    July 4, 2007 at 1:51 pm

    Great idea if Ron Paul was interested. However, I think he is done with the libertarian party. At least if he keeps his congressional seat, he can continue to demonstrate how a Libertarian would vote.

    I don’t think that Ron Paul’s supporters are as naïve as you suggest. I believe that the American people will win if he stays in the race long enough to change the debate.

  10. NH

    July 6, 2007 at 12:39 am

    The LP classically shoots itself in the foot. It had a hissy fit in NH when its webmaster posted news of a house party at which RP was to appear. She even quit over this!

    LPNH is not even endorsing RP because it’s too immature and will never get any good candidate as close to being our leader as RP is now.

    But alas they shun him because he has the R next to his name.

    Too bad.

  11. bill wald

    July 7, 2007 at 8:06 pm

    The NEA and AARP can swing any national election. What will Ron Paul promise to them?

  12. Richard Winger

    July 12, 2007 at 12:53 pm

    If the Libertarian Party would do a good job of qualifying itself for more state ballots in 2007, its presidential nomination would look a lot more appealing next year, in case Ron Paul does go for it.

  13. Scotty Boman

    February 10, 2008 at 5:14 pm

    Dear Ron Paul Supporter:

    There are moments in history when timing is everything. We can seize an opportunity, or we can let it pass by. Ron Paul’s decision to seek the Republican nomination for president was a revolutionary shot in the arm for the cause of Liberty in America. He was able to reach out to a generation who had not heard a presidential candidate speak to the principals of liberty upon which this country was founded.

    Unfortunately, the current establishment of the Republican party has not embraced Ron Paul’s candidacy nor his libertarian-conservative philosophy. Many of us have been inspired by Dr. Paul to work for the transformation of the Republican Party. This is a worthy undertaking, and four years from now, the people Ron Paul inspired may lead a new kind of Republican movement. I applaud the efforts of those who have embarked on that course.

    But that won’t make Ron Paul the 2008 Republican nominee. It looks like the Republican Party will do what it has done too often in the past; offer us the lesser of two evils, rather than a true small government conservative. With the odds of a Republican nomination fading the money clock is running slow. That is the bad news.

    The good news is that we don’t have to settle for a John McCain, or other big-government cosmetic conservative. The Ron Paul Revolution can march right into the general election in November. There is already a party that embraces the very philosophy of small government that Congressman Paul has brought to the public consciousness. They have been trying to spread that message for 35 years. They are the Libertarian Party.

    Even though the Libertarian platform may not match Ron Paul’s position statement 100%, the philosophy, that Ron has been turning people onto, is as libertarian as it is conservative. Furthermore, he has done more to get the word out than any Libertarian candidate; his positions are as libertarian as most Libertarian candidates, he has the most libertarian voting record of any national office-holder, and he has run as a Libertarian before.

    This is time his campaign is different then in 1988. He already has an enthusiastic national grassroots organization. His name is a household word. He has already had extensive national media coverage. His campaign has raised millions of dollars.

    Not only could Ron Paul still give us the opportunity to vote for a worthwhile candidate in November, the Ron Paul Libertarian candidacy could help restore the Libertarian party. Furthermore, if supporters knew he would be on the ballot in November, they would be inspired to start contributing again.

    I believe the time to start the “draft Ron Paul” effort is now. I don’t expect instant results; it is still in his interest to turn us down for the time being (especially with the Romney pull-out and the MSNBC debates on the 28th).

    Even if Ron Paul does not win on the Libertarian ticket, the fact that he can count on a solid 5% wedge between the Democratic and Republican vote, will force them to fight for those votes. Even if it means delaying the national ID card until the next election cycle, it will be worth it. Even if it only ends the Iraq war sooner, it will be worth it. The list goes on.

    Of course “drafting” Ron Paul, is a poor word choice for Libertarians; as freedom lovers, we need to see this as more of a seduction than a draft. The choice is ultimately Ron Paul’s. Libertarians need to convince him to love the Libertarian Party as much as its members love him. He will need to play hard to get. We should expect that much from a man of dignity. As he resists the idea, more and more Libertarians need to make him feel it is the right choice.

    Here is my idea:

    Send Ron Paul a Libertarian Valentine on FEBRUARY 14th
    http://www.dailypaul.com/node/28031#comment-310876
    http://ronpaul2008.com

    Prior to that date, tell everyone you know to send a message by phone, email and fax to the Ron Paul campaign, and the Libertarian Party, that you want Ron Paul to accept a Libertarian nomination. Send a donation with a message (even a small one like $25 will get their attention. The money clock has come to a screeching halt). Let him know that Libertarians LOVE his revolution.

    Ron Paul campaign contacts:
    http://www.ronpaul2008.com/contact/

    Libertarian Party Contacts:

    http://www.lp.org/organization/lncdirectory2.shtml

    Ron Paul’s contact information:

    http://www.house.gov/paul/

    Texas-14th, Republican
    203 Cannon HOB
    Washington, DC 20515-4314
    Phone: (202) 225-2831

    Make this idea go viral!

  14. Pingback: V is for Valentine! | Ron Paul War Room