April 15, 2011

Sen. Robert Paul (R-TX) 2012?

  7:25 pm

Could the first family of libertarianism be adding yet another name to its increasingly Kennedyesque dynasty of freedom fighters?  Ron Paul’s other son, Robert Paul, is considering launching a campaign to join Rand in the U.S. Senate, come 2012.  He’s begun making some speaking arrangements and has been talking to the press about the possibility.  Robert Paul already has an impressive Facebook following: over 2000 individuals “like” the idea of Robert Paul for Senate, and that number is quickly growing.

What do you think?  Love them or hate them, libertarians seem to have become a permanent “fourth leg” of sorts to the Republican stool, showing no signs of going away.  And the GOP’s sizable Tea Party contingent–while not explicitly libertarian–is heavily influenced by proto-libertarian philosophers like Hayek and Bastiat.  Would it be a bad thing if Texans chose a libertarian to represent them in the Senate?



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Matthew Kilburn

The problem with adding Libertarianism as a "fourth leg" is that it would directly oppose another leg - that of social conservatism.

Economic, Social, and Defense Conservatives have worked well together because the differences are primarily in priorities, rather than actual views. Not so with libertarianism.

Social Conservatives belief unborn life is critically important to our country, that we have a significant interest in protecting the traditional family, and that drug use poses a serious threat to our future.

Libertarians couldn't give a damn what someone smokes, who someone sleeps with, or anything, and their general view is "damn the consequences". How do you put them in the same party with people who actually care about the social fabric?


Since when is "2000" facebook followers impressive?


Go, Rob, go. An America in which the Kennedys and the Bushes are replaced by the Pauls is an America headed in the right direction.


I find dynastic politics distasteful. It seems particularly out of place among libertarians.

While this guy may be qualified, there is little doubt that it is his family name that merits a front-page post. That doesn't seem particularly meritocratic, which I associate with libertarianism.


#1: Has it ever occurred to you that some people feel the social fabric is stronger when individual rights are held sacred, and people treat one another as ends-in-themselves rather as means to someone else's end?

Speaking of libertarianism, has everyone purchased tickets to the Atlas Shrugged movie this weekend? Heading out to see it now!


What has he done that makes people think he would be a good Senator? Is the fact that he was born into the Paul family make him a credible candidate for that office?


Would it be a bad thing if Texans chose a libertarian to represent them in the Senate?

I think it would be great.

Btw, as for libertarianism (small l libertarianism---the root word is liberty for anyone who may be confused) being a fourth leg of the stool, I would argue that it is really the central leg of the stool. In this respect, I harken back to the famous Reagan quote:

If you analyze it I believe the very heart and soul of conservatism is libertarianism. I think conservatism is really a misnomer just as liberalism is a misnomer for the liberals–if we were back in the days of the Revolution, so-called conservatives today would be the Liberals and the liberals would be the Tories. The basis of conservatism is a desire for less government interference or less centralized authority or more individual freedom and this is a pretty general description also of what libertarianism is.

Now, I can’t say that I will agree with all the things that the present group who call themselves Libertarians in the sense of a party say, because I think that like in any political movement there are shades, and there are libertarians who are almost over at the point of wanting no government at all or anarchy. I believe there are legitimate government functions. There is a legitimate need in an orderly society for some government to maintain freedom or we will have tyranny by individuals. The strongest man on the block will run the neighborhood. We have government to insure that we don’t each one of us have to carry a club to defend ourselves. But again, I stand on my statement that I think that libertarianism and conservatism are travelling the same path.


#1 I'm pretty sure both Ron and Rand Paul are pro-life, but they both believed the issue should be resolved at the state level instead of the Federal level.


Not a snowball's chance in hottest corner of Hell.

Too many good conservatives running, along with one power player with big bucks.

Matthew Kilburn

"Has it ever occurred to you that some people feel the social fabric is stronger when individual rights are held sacred"

Metro, please tell me what it is about divorce, drug use, abortion (though a good number of libertarians are pro life, not all are), declining respect for the traditional family, etc. that make the social fabric stronger.

There is a way to act that should be encouraged by society, because it is beneficial, and then there is a way that is damaging - at both the personal and societal level.

While I respect the desires for "freedom", it HAS to come with responsibility...yet with unchecked libertarianism, it does not.

If letting people do whatever they want without legal restrictions or muscling led to the best possible outcome for everyone, we would have no need for police.

Matthew Kilburn

"I’m pretty sure both Ron and Rand Paul are pro-life, but they both believed the issue should be resolved at the state level instead of the Federal level"

And how do you do that? How do you stop women in Utah from traveling to Oregon for an abortion? How do you stop women in Virginia from traveling to Maryland? How do you stop women in Arizona from traveling to California?

We should remember that federalism is a means, not an end. It is a means to achieve responsible policies by local lawmakers that best serve unique constituencies. This is why agriculture, education, taxes, resource conservation, etc. are all good for federalism, because the circumstances change from state to state.

But abortion is no less immoral, and no less socially destructive, in New York City or Oregon than it is in Alabama or Kansas.



No more dynasties, please.



Rand Paul introduced a federal life amendment...i believe. So he is a little more pro-life than his dad. I think there is a misconception about libertarians. For one, while the strictest sense of libertarians, is that they are pro-choice....or for getting the government out of the issue together...that's not necessarily true. To them it is about the constitution largely, and i think that someone can be libertarian overall...and still be very pro-life. I myself am a pro-life libertarian. I don't believe in spending or taxes...i'm pretty strict in that sense.


You're right, some libertarians see abortion as an act of agression and therefore oppose it while others believe the government has no business being involved in such an issue.


I thought he was thinking of running for House not Senate?


Count me among the pro-life libertarian conservatives.


#1 -- More like restless leg syndrome? :)


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