A foolproof plan.
“That’s the first sign you know you’re a libertarian. You see the red light. You stop. You realize that there’s not a car in sight. And you put your foot on the gas.”
This is funny since I’ve actually been trying to apply libertarian thought to other areas of life, driving being one of them. I really feel as though we would be a lot safer with more stop signs than traffic lights. Not only would traffic flow more fairly, but people would come to respect stop signs more. The only places where traffic lights are preferable are perhaps on extremely busy boulevards. Other than that, stop signs would be a lot more effective. Maybe I’m crazy.
I really really enjoy drinking. I have never smoked weed and I don’t plan on ever doing so. I have personal reasons (mostly that I know that I would love it so much that when I’m not drunk, I’d be high, and I know how it can be a slippery slope for musicians). That being said, I believe with every fiber of my being that ANY government prohibition is contrary to our natural rights as human beings. Drugs should be legal. It is common sense that things that are illegal are inherently MORE dangerous. The drug war and legal prescription drugs have each been responsible for more death than the use of illegal drugs has. That alone should convince people that we need to take a step back and look at how ridiculous and unjust prohibition of drugs is.
While we Ron Paul supporters believe with all our heart, based on consistent factual evidence, that our candidate is capable of saving the country.
My dad just read me his latest essay, “A Tea Party Conservative’s Defense of Ron Paul and His Supporters.” He’s going to give me the “okay” to post it in a little while. My dad definitely still has a long way to go as far as abandoning his current foreign policy beliefs, but this essay is a very encouraging step. I also imagine that if when he posts it on Mark Levin’s wall and he gets negative comments from staunch neo-cons, he will gravitate further towards our revolution. Also, I just got back from a successful job interview, and I start Thursday!
Obviously my Dad has a long way to go as far as his neo-conservative foreign policy stances are concerned. However, just a month ago, he himself was one of the people that dismissed Ron Paul the way he explains in this essay. I’m really encouraged that our nightly debates have actually accomplished something. He asked me to bear in mind when reading this that he is trying to appeal to Conservatives, which explains the boldness of some of his statements. I ask you to be patient and keep that in mind as well. Despite our stark disagreements, I am so proud of my Dad and I love and respect him for passing down his love of this country and his passion for justice to me. Although he may embrace principles that we libertarians fight tooth-and-nail against, I can assure you that this man’s heart is absolutely in the right place. I will keep arguing passionately and hopefully that will bring him even closer to the Revolution in the future. For now, here is my dad’s essay:
A tea party conservative’s defense of Ron Paul…and his supporters.
by Russ Paladino
I want to state at the outset that this essay is not intended to be an endorsement of Ron Paul. While I respect and admire many of his positions and his fidelity to the constitution, I have strong misgivings about some of his stances on national security. If you could hear the debates between myself and my 20 year old son, a passionate Ron Paul supporter, you would readily accept the sincerity of my disclaimer.
As the political season has heated up I’ve been surprised at the tone of the discourse as it relates to Ron Paul. I can hardly believe what I’m seeing and hearing from my fellow tea partiers and conservatives. My assumption that conservatives are more thoughtful and logical than my emotion driven liberal friends has taken a bit of a hit.
Honest debate is imperative in a presidential campaign but name calling is counterproductive. Agree or disagree, his viewpoint is clear and consistent. There is nothing ambiguous about Ron Paul. Most confounding is how quickly the debate has degenerated from a discussion of alternative ideas to name calling (“crazy old fool”), and distortion (“he’s a Jew hater.”) These are the very same type of attacks that conservatives rail against when it’s directed toward them and people we admire like Sarah Palin, George W. Bush, Michelle Bachmann, Ronald Reagan, etc…? Conservatives have forever endured unfair characterizations and false charges. This happens solely because our ideological opponents seek to marginalize and invalidate us. When did it become acceptable for conservatives to direct that same type of thoughtless vitriol toward their own?
I will admit that I was prone to many similar assumptions about Ron Paul as my peers. Only after my son began sending me excerpts from his books and website did I understand his ideology in greater detail. I humbly suggest that my conservative friends do a little Ron Paul research of their own. This has not converted me to into a Ron Paul supporter. I still disagree with a good many of his views. However, I have come to realize that Ron Paul is most definitely a patriot. I believe that many of his PR problems stem from an inability to express his ideas effectively in a soundbite world. He appears impatient and unwilling to suffer fools who do not share his level of understanding of the constitution and the Founder’s intent. An effective executive must exhibit great skill in communicating ideas and building consensus. This, in my opinion, is not one of Ron Paul’s strong suits.
Most importantly, Ron Paul’s message about small government, individual freedom, free markets and the constitution is connecting with the younger generation in ways that the tea party has not been able to. Admittedly, passion can sometimes manifest in obnoxious ways. Some of Ron Paul’s supporters can be over the top, but so can some Tea Partiers. The majority of his base is young. I’d argue that youthful exuberance is at the core of this in-your-face activism. Yes, it’s obnoxious on the one hand, but exciting and hopeful on the other! That the next generation could be turned on by these ideas is what I call true “Hope and Change.”
What I fear more than a Ron Paul presidency is the possibility that his supporters would become disillusioned and alienated by conservatives who are hell bent on destroying the man personally, rather than debating his ideas thoughtfully. It is imperative that his young followers feel as though their voices can be heard and our debate can be civil. We stand to gain nothing as a movement by destroying Ron Paul personally, and marginalizing his supporters. Our country is crying out for a new generation of leaders to grab the baton and restore constitutionalism, after decades of destructive policies by corrupt politicians.
With regard to Ron Paul and his supporters, I appeal to my conservative brethren to raise the level of debate and avoid the urge to use the same unfair tactics that our adversaries employ. We will need Ron Paul and his constituency to get behind another conservative in the race, in the probable event that he doesn’t win the GOP nomination. The majority of our viewpoints are in agreement. We can debate the rest and in the meantime work together toward restoring our constitution, economic health, individual liberty and our super-power status….together, one step at a time.
Ayn Rand [FreedomWithoutException’s Quote of the Day 9/17/11]
HAPPY CONSTITUTION DAY, USA!
My dad, who I have been debating with incessantly every night over foreign policy (he has been arguing the status-quo neo-con position), just told me that he is going to write a blog post DEFENDING Ron Paul and asking conservatives to open up to his alternate ideas about foreign policy. As much as I always knew in my heart that my dad would realize that Ron Paul and Judge Napolitano’s ideas are incredible, the fact that it’s actually starting to happen is stunning and gratifying in ways I can’t explain. HE IS GOING TO POST IT ON MARK LEVIN’S WALL. I will post it here as soon as it’s up. I can’t wipe this stupid smile off my face. HAPPY CONSTITUTION DAY!
Hey guess what….SHE DIDN’T HAVE AN ANSWER TO THIS.
I fear death because I rather like living and the people I spend my life with.
This is why atheism bothers me as much as theism does, if not more. It is quite arrogant, in my eyes, to be so certain about something that’s so far out of our realm of understanding. I feel so much more comfortable as an agnostic deist, humbling myself enough to acknowledge the fact that what comes before and after life on earth is something that my measly human brain is too small to comprehend. Even most things about the intricacies of our human lives and emotions are unexplainable in this realm of understanding. How could we possibly be so bold as to claim “conclusion!” in regards to the realms we haven’t even faced yet? In this regard, atheists, you are exhibiting the same type of faith- a belief that is unfounded in empirical evidence-that religious theists do.
the majority of people that are terrorists now probably wouldn’t even know what America was had we never occupied their land and so actively supported Israel with unconstitutional foreign aid. Just sayin’….
How does Rick Santorum not realize how absolutely ridiculous he sounds when he makes the argument that our military actions played NO role in fueling the 9/11 attacks? It is literally sickening to me that these “Tea Party” people, who have made a severe shift back into the mainstream status quo of the Republican party, can cheer for this kind of patronizing rhetoric. When Ron Paul attempted to justify his position with evidence, he was booed. It’s so sad that a candidate can go up there and say something as inane and lofty as “they just hate us for our freedom!” and get an easy round of applause, yet Ron Paul presents hard evidence that our own actions, taken by ALL administrations (Republican and Democrat) over the past decades provided the fuel for the fire of these terrorists’ hatred…..and gets booed? Since when is saying that our policies are misguided and harmful unpatriotic?? Rick Perry charges that our government is responsible for a Ponzi scheme, and gets raucous applause. He talks about being proud of the 200+ state executions that have taken place since he has been in office, and he is just a tough-guy patriot. The minute that Ron Paul puts the good ol’ American Empire testosterone on the shelf and questions our government’s blatantly unconstitutional actions that have been responsible for thousands of deaths over the past 7 decades and for meddling in other people’s business, he is booed and labeled as someone who sympathizes with terrorists. He does not sympathize with the extremists. Rather, he understands HOW these extremist movements take hold. Al Quaeda WOULD NOT EXIST had it not been for the Carter administration empowering and training the Muhajideen during the Cold War. To deny that we are completely removed from ANY personal responsibility regarding these extremists is just contrary to common sense. That is just one small example of the U.S.’s actions that played a role in giving motivation to extremists. The sad truth is that people are more content in their ignorant belief that these terrorists are able to complete these horrifying acts solely because they hate us for our freedom and culture. If we keep going down this path of forsaking the Constitution in order to “get them before they get us,” a policy that has backfired repeatedly and made us less and less safe, it won’t be long until we no longer have any freedom to defend.
Too many people, especially Neo-Cons, think that what makes America great is how big and powerful we are. This couldn’t be more misguided. What makes America great is the liberty and freedom that we’re SUPPOSED to have, which is guaranteed by our long-forsaken Constitution. Liberty and freedom have nothing to do with expanding our empire and extending our range of power in the world. That type of thinking is primitive, and results in death, overspending, and a wild sense of distraction from what truly makes for an incredible country. The answer is individual freedom, and it is outlined with perfect guidelines in our Constitution.
We are not supposed to be an empire. Wouldn’t it make way more sense for individual states to govern themselves, with these states united by the U.S. Constitution, rather than the states being subject to the whims of our huge central government? Our nation is too big and incredibly diverse for any of the broad bureaucratic measures put in place by our bloated federal government to possibly work effectively for everyone. In fact, 99% of the time, it only works for those groups that are in positions of power that are able to effectively lobby Congress. This situation of the federal government having too much power can only take hold when Americans are propagandized into thinking that our greatness comes from power rather than liberty. Our “preemptive” wars and our occupations all over the world make us regard ourselves as an empire without even realizing it. Unless we get back to the Constitution, this sense of “empire” rather than a group of states united in liberty will never go away.
You are not responsible for my health.
You are not responsible for my personal habits, so long as they do not harm those around me.
You are not responsible for my earnings.
You are not responsible for physical things that I desire.
You are not responsible for my relationships.
You are not responsible for what I freely think about others.
You are not responsible for what other people freely think about me.
You are not responsible for my happiness.
You are not responsible for my neighbor’s happiness.
You are responsible for our freedom.
Just let me be free; I’ll take it from there.