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Rand Paul, The Modern Day Millennial Warrior 4 Civil Rights

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His latest fight to protect our rights.



You wont find him on any Federal Election Commission disclosure forms, but Director of National Intelligence James Clapper is the biggest in-kind donor to the incipient Rand Paul-for-president campaign.


Whatever its merits, the National Security Agency metadata program couldnt be better fashioned to play into fears of the government. Is it vast? Yes. Secret? Check. Raise profound questions about privacy? Uh-huh.


This is the kind of issue Rand Paul was born and (literally) raised to raise holy hell over. The NSA leak came on the heels of revelations that the Internal Revenue Service was singling out tea-party groups for extra scrutiny, and on the heels of the Associated Press and James Rosen investigations.


Interesting and smart: Sen. Rand Paul taps into an American tradition of dissent rarely invoked by other modern Republicans.


Add in the gun-control fight earlier this year and Paul is nearly 4-for-4 in fights sticking up, in his view, for the first four amendments of the Bill of Rights. The only thing missing is the third, because no one has proposed quartering of troops in our homes yet.


It is a Rand Paul moment in the GOP not just because the headlines reinforce his core critique of leviathan as too big, too unaccountable and too threatening, but because he is smart and imaginative enough to capitalize on those headlines.


Paul has that quality that cant be learned or bought: Hes interesting. How many potential Republican presidential candidates have helped shepherd a new verb into the English language. The hoopla around Pauls filibuster gave us to drone, in the sense of dont drone me, bro.


Paul taps into an American tradition of dissent not usually invoked by Republicans. At the Time magazine gala this year honoring the 100 most influential people in the world (he was one), he raised a glass to Henry David Thoreau. In his inaugural Senate address, he contrasted his Kentucky hero, the irascible abolitionist Cassius Clay, with the more conventional Kentucky political legend, the Great Compromiser, Henry Clay.


His cultural affect is different, too, a little more Utne Reader than National Review. At a packed event at the Reagan Library, he explained: Im a libertarian conservative who spends most of my free time outdoors. I bike and hike and kayak, and I compost. It might be the first positive reference to composting in the history of that fine institution.


Not too long ago, Pauls foreign-policy views would have been an insuperable obstacle to a serious presidential run. No more. The evolution in the partys foreign policy is captured in the story of the Pauls. In 2008, Ron Pauls noninterventionism made him a punching bag in the Republican primary debates. In 2012, it got a respectful hearing. In 2016, his sons (less toxic) version of the same policy will be much closer to the partys mainstream.


At least for some stretch of 2015, Rand Paul could well be the Republican front-runner, tapping into grass-roots enthusiasm on the model of Howard Dean in 2003. And its not inconceivable that he could go further than that famous representative of the Democratic wing of the Democratic Party.


Paul has a built-in online and grass-roots network of the sort it takes years to build. In fact, it did. His father built it, and now hes working to expand it in his extensive travels. During those years, his father welcomed into his fold cranks and haters, and one of Rand Pauls quiet messages is that he has his fathers core convictions, without the loathsome baggage.


Im far from a Rand Paul-ite. I dont think there was ever any threat of Americans being droned sitting at cafes, nor do I think drones are the scariest invention in the history of flight. Im not where Paul is on foreign or national-security policy, and I doubt his libertarianism has as much crossover appeal in blue states as he hopes.


But libertarianism is a significant strand on the right. It should be represented, and represented well. By and large, Rand Paul does that. Underestimate him at your peril.




one reason why we need a smaller government is so that it is potent enough where it is actually needed. namely, in administering justice against those who violate the liberty of others.

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President Coolidge shrank the government, and prosperity followed. All government is consumptive not productive. The Federal Government spends 25-30% of the countries' wealth and generates no GDP. In a 12 trillion dollar economy, if government spending created growth, the extra trillion dollars that we are spending each year, the annual deficit, should create 7-8% growth (1/12), but that trillion plus the 85 billion per month that the fed is pouring into the banks, has created NO NET EFFECT! 2% growth is still the norm. Keynsian Economics is witch craft, nothing more.

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lol!...rand stinking paul endorsed mitt stinking romney...he's a big government, warmongering, izraeli-cheerleading, drug-war supporting, monetary ignoramus and goddamned phony...you can shove the rand brand up your arse...

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