Can Paul Offer Anything But “No”?

May 20th, 2010 at 5:58 pm | 13 Comments |

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Rand Paul may or may not be a racist. I can’t say either way; although invoking the Civil Rights Act as an example of the government overstepping its proper role not once but twice (he also did it in an interview on NPR) certainly leaves the question open for debate. At the very least, Rand Paul’s comments reveal a troubling conception of the proper role of government in society.  Specifically, he doesn’t think there is one.

Like his father, Mr. Paul seems to have an aversion to any use of government power at all, even if that power is used for purposes like ending unjust, counterproductive, and downright immoral discrimination. If Mr. Paul has qualms about the legitimacy of government intervention to end the most flagrant discrimination, it’s difficult to imagine he could be totally at ease with any state action at all. While I certainly wouldn’t bet on it, it is feasible that Mr. Paul isn’t a racist.  Even so, Rand Paul remains (like his father) a fringe libertarian whose beliefs are so outside the mainstream that it is difficult to fathom Paul succeeding in the Senate at doing anything but saying “NO.”

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13 Comments so far ↓

  • easton

    Actually, in the end his voting record might appear moderate since he will vote no for all Conservative legislation as well. It is the reason why Dennis Kuchinich has an anemic voting record for the Democrats, and he almost voted no for Health care legislation. If Paul sells out, then he should make GOP’ers fairly happy, if he doesn’t he will make them nuts, especially if and when Republicans take the WH back.

  • Rob_654

    Isn’t it a bit funny that Ron Paul, someone who tells us how the government needs to get out or lives, has been on the government payroll for much of his adult life – first in the military than in the government instituting policies that puts the government into our lives?

    And now is son wants to get on the public payroll?

    Just like his father, Rand, will be a fringe player (if elected) with a fringe – but loyal – group of followers but in the end he, like his dad, will be a sideline show.

  • gmckee1985

    It’s often good to say “no”. Especially now. We’re out of money.

  • Smarg

    The Civil Rights Act was destructive and discriminatory itself, singling out Southern states for another Reconstruction-type occupation.

    Look at the results: public schools destroyed by morally and ethically bankrupt fatherless welfare children who violently attack White children…but this does not fit the maintream media’s agenda so it is never reported.

    Go figure.

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  • dante

    Smarg, I think your hood is showing…

  • bamboozer

    Take the next step beyond Rand Paul: Is Libertarianism anything but NO?

  • sinz54

    bamboozer: Take the next step beyond Rand Paul: Is Libertarianism anything but NO?
    They’re in favor of unrestricted free trade among nations.

    And that, by the way, is another problem I have with libertarianism. Should we have unrestricted free trade with Iran?

    Libertarians have never quite explained whether the U.S. should trade with unfree nations and potential adversaries (like Iran); whether we should have unrestricted free trade with nations that manipulate their currency (like China).

    Libertarianism doesn’t work.
    Even Milton Friedman, who was one of the staunchest advocates of limited government in the second half of the 20th century, was not a libertarian.

  • sinz54


    The biggest problem with Rand Paul’s libertarian views on race relations, is that it can give political cover to folks like you who have never accepted that the South deserved to lose the Civil War, and that it deserved to be treated like an occupied nation until it abandoned its racialism.

    The mistake the U.S. made was ending Reconstruction too early.

  • Carney

    I agree with Jonah Goldberg’s dictum that when any big decision is being made, you need a libertarian in the room. Paul may well serve that purpose in the US Senate if elected.

    What’s fascinating for me to see is the hysterics over his stance on private discrimination from people who go on and an about how you shouldn’t legislative morality and impose your values on others.

    In any case, my chief fear about Paul is his foreign policy and national security stance.

  • Smarg

    I think dante and sinze need to go to Cleveland, Ohio, and see the results of over 40 years of “progressive” rule. Beware the Obama-voters, though. Because they will cut you.

  • JimBob

    Rand Paul can lead the GOP away from the disastrous policies of the Bush Cheney NeoCon regime. Stuck in Afghanistan for nine years now. Iraq for seven. Trillions down the drain. Policies Frum fully supported and still does support. That’s why his website has been on a two day binge. Cut through the BS and this is what this all about.

    “Rand Paul’s election may very well mean the beginning of the end of the neo-conservative movement in the Republican Party. ”

  • gmckee1985

    You know, how about the GOP go back to being the party of Reagan? Halfway between the recklessness of the Bush Cheney and Ron Paul camps.