September 10, 2008

Appearing at the National Press Club this morning, flanked by rock-solid conservative third-party candidate Chuck Baldwin, the venerable Ralph Nadar, and the insane and reprehensible leftist Cynthia McKinney, Ron Paul dispensed this guidance:

For me, though, my advice”€”for what it’s worth”€”is to vote! Reject the two candidates who demand perpetuation of the status quo and pick one of the alternatives that you have the greatest affinity to, based on the other issues.

A huge vote for those running on principle will be a lot more valuable by sending a message that we”€™ve had enough and want real change than wasting one’s vote on a supposed lesser of two evils.

There’s a lot of truth to this. But the statement begs the question, Why after Paul failed in his valiant attempt to win the Republican nomination, did not he himself make a third-party bid? Indeed, Paul was in a far better position than any of those standing beside him this morning to lead such a venture”€”with his breakthrough into the MSM, with his solid eCampaign, and miraculous supporter-generated “€œMoney Bombs.”€ If Bob Barr can pull in 6% in a recent Rasmussen poll, then I think it’s safe to say that Paul could be getting support somewhere in the 20s.

In the end, the ideas-free “just vote!” advice, sounds like something you’d hear in an NBC public service announcement.  

The fact is, Paul has developed a knack for alienating the GOP enough to achieve pariah status, but then not having the guts to go all the way, abandon the party, and really accomplish something. Take the latest Paulian stratagem: Last week he held a counter-convention in which he claimed to be a loyal Republican, desiring only to reform the GOP from with, return it to its roots. And then today, he announces that Cynthia McKinney is his great ally in the fight for freedom”€”ensuring that his influence within the GOP will be next to nothing. 

It’s also worth pointing out that in all these Left-Right, “€œstrange-bedfellows”€ coalitions, the Left always ends up on top. Does anyone actually believe that Cynthia McKinney gives a fig about monetary policy? (Unless, of course, you’re talking about a conspiracy of evil Jewish bankers out to oppress poor black folks.) Does anyone think that if elected, Ralph Nader wouldn”€™t enact worse socialist measures than would the Republicans and Democrats?

We, the conservative constitutionalists, have the message that resonates with the American people, we created the netroots support, we are gradually building the institutions. And thus why would we allow some leftists to jump on our bandwagon?”€”for what!?! What do we gain? And why? because we agree with Cynthia McKinney on a few civil liberty issues? PLEASE!

I wish we could blame this decision on Paul’s lackluster presidential campaign strategists, but the fact is Lew Moore and those he hired are all gone. The decision to do this must have come from the man himself. We can certainly hope that one day Paul will start taking political advice from serious thinkers, but until then, for those of us who admire Paul’s message, the way forward is clear”€”the movement must move beyond the man.  

UPDATE: Further, less ill-tempered, thoughts are found here



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