Posted by Brad @ 10:30 am on January 10th 2012

The Libertarian Kennedys

I will point out that I’ve been saying this for a year. Salon runs an article called “Ron Paul’s Long Game“, which lays out a premise identical to mine in the post “Why Ron’s Running” Essentially, that the number one animating principal, at least to start, as to why Ron Paul is in this race is to keep the torch burning long enough to hand it off to his son in 2016 and 2020. I think that’s been fairly obvious to people closely watching his campaign and the people around it for some time now.

I guess I never gave my own qualitative judgement of that. The short version is, I foresee problems with Rand (in a weird way, he doesn’t have the guile-less form of guile that in some manner shields his father, and he has a tendency to try to be over-philosophical and runs into the problem of thinking himself smarter than he sometimes is, whereas is father usually starts from a place of aw-shucks humility which suits the message much better), I see problems with the Paul inner circle (more than half of whom hold positions in both Rand and Ron’s offices, btw, and who can be vindictive, short-sighted sonsofbitches when they feel cornered, which is often), and I wish that more effort would be made to turn this from a nepotistic dynasty to an ideological one (at some points, the endorsement/CFL game looks dangerously close to cult-building). But, I’d be lying if I said I’m not jazzed by the prospect of a true libertarian wing of the party not only emerging (I think it has emerged, see: Pauls, Tea Party), but really establishing itself as a long term presence. And I’m not sure that anything LESS than the kind of play the Pauls are running (injecting water into the cracks of the party machine concrete; freezing it and letting it open up space) works. Perfect really has been the enemy of the good for libertarianism in this country. The Pauls sure ain’t perfect. But they’re damn good.

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