Many people in the libertarian community do not realize just how lucky we are. Although government continues to grow at great speed, we are in the midst of a turning. Ron Paul has played a huge role in this process. As libertarians, we should be thankful for having such a great representative.
From a libertarian standpoint, Ron Paul is easily the greatest congressman of the last hundred years and perhaps ever. We have this man running for president and we couldn’t really ask for a better scenario.
Politics, ultimately, is not a solution in moving our society towards greater liberty. But most people think politics and voting are the mechanisms we need to roll back government. Go talk to an average guy on the street and tell him that if he becomes more educated about liberty and some others do the same, then that in itself will achieve greater liberty. He will think you are nuts. He is under the assumption that you have to vote in the “right” people.
If you tell the average guy on the street that withdrawing consent from the government will ultimately cause it to collapse, he will not understand the concept. In fact, many libertarians do not understand this, so how can we hope for non-libertarians to understand this?
This is why Ron Paul is so important. He has a platform right now to reach millions of people. The grassroots from his 2008 campaign are all over the internet spreading his message. Meanwhile, it almost seems as if a day doesn’t go by that Congressman Paul is not making an appearance on television or radio.
There are some issues in which there will always be disagreements between libertarians, such as immigration and abortion. There will also be disagreements about just how small government should be. But could libertarians ask for a better person to represent their viewpoint that Ron Paul? He is consistent, honest, and principled, and he takes the libertarian position on all of the major issues.
This is especially important. If you get into a discussion with someone about politics, or specifically about Ron Paul, you don’t have to make any excuses for him. You don’t have to say, “well, he is good on this particular issue, but don’t pay attention to him when he talks about this other thing.” Again, libertarians can disagree, but on all of the major issues, you can count on Ron Paul to take a principled and consistent position. It is helpful when you don’t have to be apologetic for someone you are trying to defend. You don’t have to make any excuses for Congressman Paul.
Although politics is not the ultimate solution, Ron Paul and his devoted followers will continue to chip away at people’s beliefs. It is impossible to say if he has a good chance of getting the Republican nomination, but it is a testament to the libertarian community that it is even possible. Remember that most people, outside of libertarians and those in his district, did not even know who Ron Paul was just 5 years ago.
Libertarians now have a great opportunity with the internet and social networking to spread the message of liberty and we have a great spokesperson to represent us and our ideas.
Regardless of what happens in this election, there will be far more libertarians than there were before it started. This will slowly have its effects. It may not be noticeable to many, particularly when the government is getting bigger and more intrusive. But the pedestal of the American empire is being chipped away. It may not be noticeable, but the foundation is starting to give way.
If enough people begin to withdraw their consent, then the empire can come crashing down quickly. Very few people expected the Berlin Wall and the Soviet Union to fall apart like they did.
Libertarians will often complain about the times we live in due to an uneducated populace and a huge national government. But there is one freedom that we mostly still have and that is freedom of speech. As long as we are mostly free to communicate with each other and spread ideas, then government can be stopped. Ideas are a powerful thing.
It is interesting that many libertarians like to point to the Founding Fathers of the United States and their wisdom, but today’s libertarian leaders are far more wise and radical than the Founding Fathers. Libertarians of today have the benefit of more history and more open communication. But regardless of the reasons, I will take Tom Woods over Thomas Paine. I will take Gary North or Anthony Gregory or Robert Murphy over Adam Smith or Patrick Henry. I will take a President Ron Paul over a President Thomas Jefferson.
In conclusion, libertarians should be thankful for the time period we live in and we should be thankful that we have a wonderful spokesperson for liberty in Ron Paul. While his chances of winning the presidency might still be small, we are making huge progress. When hearts and minds are changed, liberty will eventually follow.