aefenglommung (aefenglommung) wrote,

political foo

Rand Paul has stepped into a buzz saw over civil rights. Now, Paul is a libertarian, which means he's as close to colorblind as it is probably possible to be, politically. But this is not a libertarian country -- and never really was, whatever some people might say. People don't understand his answers. They mishear him. Some do it intentionally.

This is why so many otherwise conservative people are so wary of libertarians, and why Paul's father, Rep. Ron Paul, has been labeled as the "crazy uncle" in the Republican Party. Now, I understand libertarianism. I even respect it, though I don't hold with it much, myself. I'll give Paul the benefit of every doubt. But at the end of the day, there is an air of making up one's own reality about the way libertarians talk about things, and that's a problem.

To be perfectly fair, Paul is no more disconnected from reality than most of the people on the other side -- you know, the ones who believe that if we just meet every aggressor with flowers and speak nicely to them, they won't be nasty any more. If you want to see where that form of indulging in one's own reality leads to, you have only to see the mouthful of mumbles with which the Obama Administration has met the sinking of a South Korean warship by a North Korean submarine. They dare not call it war, because they're not prepared for war. They spent all their chances to prepare for conflict smothering various autocrats' backsides with kisses, and now they have no credible response for the situation they face.

But that doesn't excuse Paul from facing hard realities, either. There is such a thing as "facts on the ground." History -- including legal history -- is what it is. Reopening old wounds is stupid. Smart politicians talk about the future.

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