Diary

A Proud Defense of Rand Paul

Sarah Palin gets it.

There’s a reason why the left-wing press is out to flay Rand Paul (a story that, started, not so-coincidentally, on government-sponsored NPR).

It’s because the Tea Party movement that both Palin and Paul represent is a threat to their power.

It’s because his views that people should have a right to determine how they use their own property is a threat to the left’s view view that the government should control how everyone gets to use their property.

It’s because by using the false smear of racism that Rand Paul has never and will never endorse, and the evil specter of Jim Crow laws, which were enforced by the state the liberals worship, they seek to make permanently illegitimate principled criticism of their own state-enforced racist policies (frivolous “Disparate impact” lawsuits, affirmative action, racial quotas, minority set-aside contracts, and many other obscenities.)

When is the last time the Republicans in Congress have made any serious efforts to attack any of these state-sponsored racist attacks on the equality of each citizen before the law? (sound of crickets chirping.)

These are not some hypothetical Jim Crow questions from 50 years ago, but actual instances of racist discrimination today. All of these are the result, directly or indirectly, of liberal activist judges and bureaucrats running amok with the Civil Rights Act, just as principled conservative opponents (such as Barry Goldwater, a life member of the NAACP) feared that it would.

Do I wish Rand Paul had brought the conversation to the policies of today rather than getting caught up in the left-wing media’s trap? Absolutely. But am I glad he is willing to talk honestly about these issues and make the left defend their views? Absolutely. By attacking Rand Paul, they want to make you think that you are alone. But you are not alone.

Predictably, the Lindsey Graham/David Frum/Michael Gerson wing of the Republican party has been quick to attack him. Encouragingly many conservatives, RedStaters among them, have sprung to his defense. This is (as Thatcher would say) no time to go wobbly.

When the left attacks ferociously it is because they are afraid—afraid their racist, socialist policies of today (not hypothetical questions about policies of a half century ago that I, Rand Paul, and 99% of Americans condemn) will be exposed.

Did anyone ever give you the impression taking our government back from the left’s socialist and racist power structure would be easy? It will not be easy. They don’t care about fighting Mitch McConnell because Mitch McConnell doesn’t threaten their power. Rand Paul does. They are going to be vicious. They are going to use the worst, McCarthyist smear tactics. But we have one comeback—We can take on their hysterical rhetoric and win the election anyway. And I firmly believe we will do that in Kentucky.

From Nikki Haley to Mike Lee to Allen West, there are a number of amazing conservative candidates I’ve felt genuinely privileged to donate money and time to this cycle. But Rand Paul stands at the head of that list. So much of what passes for conservatism these days is really just a desperate attempt to defend what is left of our premises (liberty, private property, traditional  values) from the continual assault by liberal forces. We’re constantly playing football in the shadow of our own end zone, thrilled if we can somehow eke out a three or four yard gain against the left that gets us to our own 10 yard line.

But throughout this campaign, Rand Paul has been forcing the left to play on their side of the field. They aren’t used to it, and they will howl and scream and use every dirty trick in the book to avoid doing it. But we need to make them do it anyway. Because forcing *them* on defense and putting the ball on their side of the field is the only way conservatives can win the game in the long-term, rather than just attempt to lose by a narrower margin.

Stacy McCain has a wonderful defense of Rand Paul that everyone should read, pointing out that Rand Paul’s views are not some strange esoteric Libertarian theory, but part and parcel of our conservative tradition. At one point in it, he notes:

“Well, it’s still a free country, and you are free to throw Buckley, Reagan and Goldwater under the bus along with Rand Paul.”

And indeed some Republicans and so-called “conservatives” will do just that. But I’m not going to throw Reagan under the bus. And I’m not going to throw Buckley under the bus. And I’m not going to throw Goldwater under the bus.

And I’m sure as heck not going to throw Rand Paul under the bus.

And neither should you.

Instead we should hold our ground and look forward to November, when we will hear the sound of anguished but impotent wails from liberals as they vent their fury on the newly elected conservative Republican Senator from Kentucky.