The Austerity Bombermen have so far had decent success in starving out the 99%, other than what awesome victories the Democrats handed them on sequestration and whatnot. Still, let’s be honest about the reason for the “recent GOP soul-searching” here, it’s cold political calculus on how to inflict maximum austerity and move the remaining 20% of the country’s wealth into the hands of the elite. “Austerity Because God Said So” hasn’t worked, in fact it’s backfired into that whole “care about the poor” thing. “Austerity Because The Math Demands It” has worked a bit better, but not as well as it could have, the Math got us the bank disaster and people actually have noticed (mainly because all-new people got to join the ranks of the poor).
That brings us to Austerity revision 3.0: Austerity Because Don’t Tread On Me. Enter Sen. Rand Paul, the new poster child of the VSP complete with feature article from WIN THE MORNING.
Led by Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), libertarians hope to become a dominant wing of the GOP by tapping into a potent mix of war weariness, economic anxiety and frustration with federal overreach in the fifth year of Barack Obama’s presidency.
The country’s continuing fixation on fiscal issues, especially spending and debt, allows them to emphasize areas of agreement with conservative allies who are looking for ways to connect with Republicans who aren’t passionate about abortion or same-sex marriage. A Democratic administration ensures consensus on the right that states should get as much power as possible.
It’s not just socially moderate Republicans (i.e. the non-batshit crazy bigots) Paul is trying to pick up, but the disaffected younger Obama voters who have gotten around to realizing that governance is kinda hard, and that the Obama coalition is composed of folks other than young white guys. Peeling off minorities isn’t working too well, not with the GOP reminding us daily just how much they hate us. Same goes for women, who if anything have been pushed further into the Obama camp with gun control issues after the Newtown and Aurora massacres.
But Dudebros, well…there’s an untapped electoral gold (weed end the Fed) mine there if Rand can motivate enough of them to break away from Left. As long as Paul can frame the current administration in zero-sum terms where the advancement of women and minorities must come at the expense of white guys, there’s a chance that the guy may be able to convert that into votes going forward. Dudebros gotta dudebro, after all. Rand Paul’s their guy. If they get to keep the privilege while getting credit for “moderating” the GOP, it’s total bonus time.
Thinking Rand Paul was a sick joke meant he ended up Senator when Democrats refused to back Jack Conway enough to shut the guy down in 2010. Now he’s going to be unleashed upon the entire country unless we start admitting the forces promoting this guy as the future of the GOP are a problem that needs to be taken seriously.
It had never occurred to me that dudebros were voting for anyone other than Republicans, but that’s not due to any kind of scholarship on my part – I just don’t like them and therefore assume they’re assholes politically as well as socially.
He can only split the GOP, not unite it.
I say let him run naked into the night and let’s see what idiots follow him. They won’t be any of the smart young people who get that government is not their enemy.
Aren’t the “Dudebros” the same sorts of people who followed Rand’s dad around the country? There’s some of them, but not really enough of them. Fewer white guys in this country every day as demographics change
I wonder how they managed to find a wedge issue.
Just as Billy stole the conservative thunder in the 90’s, Paul sees civil liberties as the opportunity to claim the moral high ground from democrats. This won’t be difficult.
And how’s that working out for ‘conservative allies who are looking for ways to connect with Republicans who aren’t passionate about abortion or same-sex marriage’?
The states aren’t using their power to promote job growth and economic expansion, they’re using their power to ban abortion, suppress voting, and block gay rights, ensure that workers have no rights, and further expand the income inequality gap.
It’s fine that Rand Paul wants to spread the gospel of legalized weed, but that’s happening under Democrats, not under Republicans. I’m not sure how he squares his vision with reality on that.
God this shit drives me crazy. The media is fixating on the debt, not the rest of the country.
The notion that the GOP is going to let their freak flag fly and market a “libertarian” wing is so full of inherent contradictions that it will implode shortly after it starts. American libertarianism is all about dismantling government so that corporations can provide “public services” at maximum cost and no competition. Pseudo-libertarian think tanks provide “make your own reality” solutions that cannot ever be implemented much less succeed. This flirtation with the dudebros will quickly vanish is my educated guess.
Oh, and this is the greatest photo of Putin ever.
Can you imagine a photo of Obama with that expression and the quote: ““I liked it,” he said. “You should be grateful to the girls, they are helping you make the fair more popular.” Biden might be able to pull that off, though…
This. Loud and obnoxious as his supporters are, Ron Paul’s been truly awful at betting any traction in the popular vote. It says something that in the 2012 primaries when Republicans were desperately seeking a Not-Romney, not once did he become the front runner even for a week, or even come close.
I think Rand has done somewhat better than Ron, but only by moving closer to the Republican mainstream, not by drawing on any disaffected voters.
I welcome AquaBuddha 2016 almost as much as Ted Cruz, Asshole and Lovin’ It 2016.
CruderRand ain’t ready for prime time.
@Ben Franklin: Neither of the Pauls could give two shits about civil liberties. They would be perfectly happy for the state governments to do all sorts of unpleasant things to people. Their interest in civil liberties at the federal level is purely an exercise in dislike of federal power of any kind. You may want to argue that they happen to hit the nail on the head on this particular topic, but the “why” of what they do is important. They are interested in limiting federal power – power to do good as well as power to do bad.
@mainmati: The problem with libertarianism is that it undermines the GOP goal of securing power. They’ll play along where and when it serves their needs, but as soon as it’s a choice between libertarianism and growing GOP power by expanding government, they’ll choose the latter every time. Witness Medicare D, the Department of Defense, and the yet-to-be-renamed Department of Veteran Affairs to Department of Vaginal Affairs.
All fine and good, but how can you truly have a Republican “base” without the “batshit crazies”?
Most, if not all, Libertarians/ Teapartieres/Closet Republicans out here on the left coast, and there are a lot, are heavy into the legal vs illegal drugs debate. While the Dudebros and Dudettes here are publicly for legalization, in the voting booth, if they vote at all (jury duty conundrum) they vote against it. Reason: Legalization means personal profit problem.
Rand Paul will have the exact same legacy as his dad: multiple runs for the presidency with aging, 30something white males throwing their virtual panties at him on FB. He’ll get just enough primary votes to insure people throw him a bone or two and the media will allow him to raise his head every four years like a sociopathic groundhog and treat him like a serious candidate.
This. Liberals are pro-individual rights. Libertarians are anti-[federal] government. Two entirely different things.
Wait, what? Its a deep red state, 2010 was a deep red wave election, and “Paul” is a name that had deep red appeal. This wasn’t a matter of Democrats just not caring enough.
@Omnes Omnibus: Contrarians with no desire to govern. Now where have we seen that before?
OT: 65 rough miles yesterday. Great fun on the cobbles, in the dirt, and on the road. Best Prairie Roubaix ever.
@Hawes: You are aware that the 2016 GOP dream ticket is Rand Paul/Ted Cruz.
I’m not kidding. That’s who they’re convinced will beat Hillary.
I disagree. Rand Paul is in no way setting out to capture anyone who isn’t already voting Republican. Acting like he is going to be a crossover artist is sheer idiocy if the words Rand Paul says are to be believed.
Don’t forget Charlie Pierce’s ‘Five Minute Rule’, and I quote:
“The Five Minute Rule holds that anything said by Crazy Uncle Liberty (!) or his sponge-coiffed spalpeen, Senator Aqua Buddha, will make sense for exactly five minutes. However, at precisely the 5:00:01 mark, they will say something so completely bazats as to make you doubt your own cognitive capacities.”
Rand Paul is an ideologue, an acolyte at the altar of Ayn Rand. Your dudebro is not.
The good news for Rand is that there will be plenty of people “of the left” that will help him try to peel disaffected liberals. There’s a Jane for every Grover.
Their interest in civil liberties at the federal level is purely an exercise in dislike of federal power of any kind
That is most certainly true. But perception is what we’re dealing with here. Do you think there is a danger some might ascribe bad motives to democrats, and fall into the trap?
who doesn’t take him seriously?
he’s a racist grifter, just like his Daddy.
i know who the man is…he’s my enemy. any mofo that says he would have voted against the Civil Rights Act and Voting Rights Act is definitely my enemy.
and, what’s new about what he’s selling, Zander.
White resentment is all the GOP knows.
One of the handful of Libertarians on my FB feed was posting on how we didn’t have income tax before 1913. I guess Paulites want to go back to tariffs? How do they square that with the free market?
libertarians are every bit the unicorn and pony crowd
libertarians believe in ‘ freedom’ until it comes to my uterus.
good luck with selling that to young women.
Zander, all I see is him appealing to is blue collar White men…
the same group the GOP has been peddling White Resentment to for generations.
@Zandar: Correction cheerfully accepted.
@BGinCHI: Beat me by 43.
Villago Delenda Est
Fuckwit’s problem is that he’s only concerned about civil liberties for whites. Civil rights, on the other hand, are evil…forcing him to behave in a civil, polite manner toward his obvious inferiors infuriates him.
@Chris: I think that, while getting your political news mostly off the Internet makes it possible to do an end-run around reflexive mass-media centrism and false balance, it also has the unfortunate side effect of making Libertarians seem like they have much, much greater mindshare than they really do.
And this has been the case at least since the early 1990s, before most people actually had Internet access; I can’t speak for the situation further back than that.
@Villago Delenda Est:
Fuckwit’s problem is that he’s only concerned about civil liberties for whites.
Yes, whites who have never been a minority are approaching that status. Do you think this tickles their ears?
i think that the vast majority of people who would vote for either of the Pauls would otherwise either vote GOP or not vote at all.
Forum Transmitted Disease
Was at a party yesterday. It’s working like magic on the older white guys. Not sure about the younger, as I was the youngest there.
But there’s a lot of pissed off white guys out there. More than I suspected, and some that I would have surely thought would know better.
Half the Paulites that I know would swap their support in a heartbeat to any other politician that supported legalizing weed.
I don’t think that the Republicans could unbend enough to make it happen, but enough Democrats are beginning to come around, perhaps. I think it would solidify the hippie base for decades to come.
i think that the vast majority of people who would vote for either of the Pauls would otherwise either vote GOP or not vote at all.
I think you’ve set your own trap.
@SatanicPanic: I saw that too. They must get a fucking newsletter.
The 1968 Presidential Election presented a social liberal who had just pressed Civil Rights Laws and Medicare, and a once-defeated scion of Politics who promised to get us out of Viet Nam.
The Scion won.
Yeah, that will continue to be the calculation. How will the GOP continue to protect white privilege? They’ve been playing the same tune for half a century, just shifting the tools they use to do it.
That’s why California gives me hope. We broke through that barrier a while back. The GOP options here are very, very limited. What would work nationally won’t work here. Other states will break through as well. Lotta damage to clean up after, though.
@Forum Transmitted Disease: Every white guy I know has been pissed off since Obama was elected. They live in a sate of pissed-off-ness. Are these pissed off white guys something new where you are? Or are there more white guys joining them or something? I haven’t seen any change in the number of pissed off white guys. Seems pretty much the same.
Republicans are pretty much the party of white men.
@Ben Franklin: No, what I mean is that they are not potential Democratic voters or disaffected Dems. They are either pot smoking Republicans or internet libertarians.
Forum Transmitted Disease
@Nina: The legal weed issue – outside of the South – is rapidly approaching “no brainer, can’t lose” status. That Dems are fighting it is not to their credit. That Obama has been pulling the shit he has using the DOJ to go after medical marijuana providers and patients is beyond incomprehensible, and frankly is one of the few areas in which I’d say not only has his policy been a failure, not only has he disappointed me, but he’s actively pissed me off.
I understood you. But you are whistling through the graveyard, my friend, as is the entire premise of this post.
‘Nothing to see here, folks”
Would it really have made any difference? Kentucky hasn’t had a Dem senator since Wendell Ford bought the farm, has it?
@Cassidy: His link was from Tea Party America- I thought Paulites were different from those peoples… turns out they’re the same old Republicans we’ve always had.
Rand Paul will never be President.
@Zandar: This the heart of the matter. The Pauls’ stated love for keeping power at the state level isn’t about some generalized dislike of federal power; it’s about states being more likely to preserve privilege for guys like themselves while fucking over everyone else. If red states suddenly showed an interest in protecting and sustaining civil rights across the demographic spectrum, we’d hear no states’ rights nonsense from these assholes.
Forum Transmitted Disease
@Violet: Mostly this. I run with an exceptionally liberal crowd. And yeah, they’re all white. Most of them have been on board with the Obama program until quite recently.
Not so much anymore.
Nobody has said “oh I wish we’d voted for Romney” – I think everyone knows that would have been a stunningly bad move – but I think a “sane” Republican – i.e. one that cannot in any way currently pass the primary process – could make significant inroads with white liberal guys who are feeling like the right guy is not in charge.
FWIW, Rand Paul isn’t ever going to be that guy.
I submit that the whole idea of this group is a myth; that the young white men who support Obama have never been ignorant of either of these facts; and that they are therefore not ‘disaffected’
Not sure dudebros were ever Obama voters to begin with, because the one that cared about politics probably were Ron Paul supporters already. Anyway, Paul would have to get them off the couch first, might work if he had a porn star for a running mate. In other words, it’s not clear how electorally significant this demographic is to begin with.
@Forum Transmitted Disease: Not to insult your friends, but this sort of shit infuriates me. The major problems in this country are the nihilists in the Republican party and their media apologists.
Blue Dog Dems are certainly on that list, but they deserve far less blame than the wingnuts.
Civil libertarians who think they will get to dance on the center of the stage after bringing Rand to the ballroom are going to end up crying their eyes out in the bathroom. The only civil liberty he cares about is the Jim Crow era liberty enjoyed by Southern white elites to screw everyone beneath them. Meet the new Boss Hogg, same as the old Boss Hogg.
Ivan Ivanovich Renko
Got-damn skippy. Along with any other spalpeen who thinks the motherfucking Confederacy should have won the ACW.
FUCK these people.
I mean, how many times are we going to have to sit through this “rise of young white male libertarians” before the ones hand-wringing about this admit that these people are a small fringe group that isn’t getting any larger? It’s been at least a decade of this bullshit with nothing ever coming of it.
I’m glad everyone is keeping abreast of threats to the left-wing coalition, but I don’t think this a threat at all, really. I think it’s a faddish recurring story like shark attacks.
@Forum Transmitted Disease:
I don’t think your friends as described represent a substantial amount of people in the United States, proportionally or numerically, and I think you can safely blow them off as neither a problem nor a threat.
@Forum Transmitted Disease:
A “sane” Republican could make inroads with lots of groups–suburban white women, maybe some Latinos, Asians depending on the issues, maybe even a marginal increase in the African American vote if, say, the candidate had a history of supporting civil rights or something.
Uh, that’s fear manifesting as being pissed off. Eventually that fear will subside, but it’ll take a while. Facing the prospect of having to be treated like everyone else isn’t easy.
@AA+ Bonds: Until white people are no longer the majority. There are a few more decades to go.
I have a surprising number of right-wing friends but most of the white guys I know voted for Obama.
YMMV. Statistically, the white vote went to Romney, but Obama’s vote totals still look more like the demographics of the United States as a whole than Romney’s do.
Forum Transmitted Disease
@Hill Dweller: Please go ahead, I insult and mock them for this crap. They’re low-information voters (almost all voters are and that’s a real problem), they still watch television news and think it’s a reasonable source of information.
Them being pissed off I don’t mock. So am I. The country is hurting (even white guys are hurting, that’s how much hurting is going on!) and not jack shit is getting done to relieve that. They are right to be pissed.
They are pissed at the wrong people and believing the very people who are putting the hurt on them. That, I mock. I can lead them to better info, but that info is not delivered in easy to comprehend sound bites delivered by a nicely breasted blonde woman on a set composed of all primary colors, like a baby toy. So they keep going back to the people who are steering them wrong.
I don’t know how you fix that. It requires intellectual effort, and very few people in the country are up for making that kind of effort.
Why does it matter? Libertarians aren’t even an important group of votes among whites, or even white conservatives. The Republicans did the right thing strategically by blowing them off, because their ideas sound crazy to most people; they didn’t lose in 2012 because of the mythical “libertarian vote”.
There has been an outspoken fringe of libertarians and pseudo-libertarian social conservatives/anti-Semites in the U.S. for a long time, one that gained visibility after 2000 without gaining much in the way of numbers or clout, and since then there have been a number of media personalities (e.g., Neal Boortz) and second-generation social conservative exploiters (e.g., Rand Paul) of this fringe who have nevertheless depended completely on traditional conservatives for the large majority of their support.
I think it would do the Democrats a lot of good to bring more consistency to bear on issues such as cannabis legalization but not because of some fantasy constituency of election-swinging libertarians.
@AA+ Bonds: They are a small, but very vocal (especially on the internet), group. The may talk about civil liberties, but they also talk about going back to the gold standard. I cannot see how they expand much beyond their current band of supporters.
@3: There are definitely right-wing machismo sorts among every minority group. “Bros” aren’t just a white thing.
“You won’t have me to kick around, anymore” RMN
I blame the WASP hippies for his resurgence.
@Ben Franklin: Your point is?
@Forum Transmitted Disease:
As long as their definition of “sane Republican” is a Republican who’s, well, sane, rather than the incredibly low bar the media sets for these people these days, I don’t necessarily disagree with that. I would’ve voted LaGuardia in a heartbeat if I’d been alive and in New York City eighty years ago. As you say, these people simply can’t pass the primary process. Anywhere.
(And, as Violet says, an actually sane Republican’s appeal wouldn’t be limited to us white folk).
There’s always a faction of left-wing politics junkies who’re so disappointed by the Democratic Party that they go looking for third party fantasy candidates. Then again, I think that faction’s smaller now than it ever was before – the catastrophic legacy of the Bush years after the last time Nader got a little bit of traction is a lesson not lost on any of us.
(I wonder if Ron or Rand Paul, if they ran as third party candidates, could get even the amount of votes that Nader did in 2000. Wouldn’t be surprised if the answer was “no.”)
Exactly. Libertarians are small in number, fringe in outlook, worthless for Republicans, worthless for Democrats, and they’re not worth worrying about.
They didn’t get Rand Paul elected and they’re not going to get anyone elected (or not elected) anytime in the foreseeable future.
At election time, referenda for cannabis decriminalization and legalization dovetail nicely with Democratic candidates because almost all of the people with liberal views on this issue are liberals, not libertarians.
@AA+ Bonds: This. I’m getting so goddamn sick of hearing about how the Paultards are the beginning of a new political movement of the future. They’re disaffected college republicans who smoke weed in their dorm rooms and read Ayn Rand while waiting for their trust funds to be replenished.
@Forum Transmitted Disease: What I see (mostly online, I admit) is a lot of white former Naderite/Green/radical-left types who voted for Obama in 2008 hoping he was more like they were, and are now pissed off that policy-wise he’s just a regular old Democrat like the rest of them.
And a bunch of Internet libertarians trolling them with “ha ha, you thought he’d be a real progressive just because he was a black guy, clearly liberals are the real racists,” and that line actually works on a few of them.
I suspect these people are not representative of a huge fraction of American liberals, but they think they are in some true sense, and other liberals are just prisoners of some kind of false consciousness.
I mean, I, too, love to hate on libertarians, but it’s because they’re pathetic and easy to rile. They’re not a threat to anybody except maybe the people living in the apartment or house next door. They’re certainly not a voting bloc.
But . . . who cares about those people? The simple numbers from the last election show that they make up far less than a rounding error when it comes to the electorate.
@AA+ Bonds: OTOH dudebro is a great term.
To me the best evidence that there is really no “libertarian vote” to worry about is one of the least-covered stories of the 2012 election, which is that Ron Paul made a great showing in the Iowa caucuses by securing inroads into the far-right social conservative community through virulently anti-libertarian, traditionally far-right views on abortion and immigration.
@AA+ Bonds: Well, you know, my own attitudes are way out left of the Democratic Party’s center of gravity myself, so I keep on thinking I would possibly be one of these people if I were truly following my heart. But they’re not helping.
Just because libertarians are the tail trying to wag the dog, doesn’t mean they can’t steal the auspices of a genuine movement.
Shall I invoke the 1968 election, again? Do you need clarification of what happened?
This, all of it.
The thing about “libertarians” is that they largely sort out into right-wing and left-wing voters. There are people who consider themselves “libertarian” because they’re big on tax cuts, deregulation, gun owners’ rights, and states’ rights. For the most part, they vote Republican, because the GOP already represents their views on all of that fairly well. Then there are people who consider themselves “libertarian” because they’re big on gay rights, abortion rights, legalized weed and attacking the security state. For the most part, they vote Democrat, because the Dems already represent their views on those issues.
And for the most parts, those two strands of “libertarian” don’t care about each other’s issues – left-libertarians see corporate and religious power as just as big a problem as state power, while right-libertarians see gay rights and women’s rights activists as exactly the sort of dangerous liberals that “libertarianism” is supposed to allow them to suppress. In other words, just like regular Democrats and Republicans.
People who’re actually libertarian all across the board exist, but they’re really not that common and certainly not enough to form a viable third party. Even in that demographic, most people have their preferences and priorities. At the end of the day, either they hate Republicans enough to hold their nose and vote Democrat, or they hate Democrats enough to hold their nose and vote Republican.
@Matt McIrvin: Sound and fury. The number that counts is the number of ballots cast.
@Forum Transmitted Disease:
I must ask…the election was in November…it’s April…
what has happened in this time for them to get of the Obama train.
@Chris: The people making the most noise about how the two parties are completely identical, I find, seem to care deeply about weed and the security state, and very little else.
And, you know, these are actually issues of import. But there are others.
So why does everyone hear what libertarians have to say now? Simply put, it’s because libertarians are quite often white, male, educated, loner misanthropes – often enough from the tech sector where cultural norms follow the point of view of “it’s PC fascism to question why any part of society is male-dominated” and “I can read a circuit diagram, thus I would be better than anyone else at their job” – and online media, largely emergent since 2000, over-represents their point of view as a demographic group.
These people were still around before 2000, and in my opinion, in numbers similar enough to their numbers now to have a similar impact on elections and policy (that is, almost none).
This can certainly be unpacked to ask why this is the case and how well the numbers match up, but it doesn’t point to any real shift in the American political landscape, in my opinion.
@Ben Franklin: Sixty-eight is sui generis for a number of reasons.
Rand Paul will never make it through the GOP primaries.
Marketing for the GOP. Pure and simple.
Because the Black President
with his Black wife
and his Black children
yeah, after being told that Barack Obama was just a fluke…
Willard Romney won 60% of the White Vote
and got his ass handed to him.
All those ‘ other’ people decided this election.
Yeah, they’re madder than a mutha.
And, you know what?
They can stay mad.
Fuck them for voting against their own economic interest, because only 1% had their economic interest in mind when they were voting for Willard.
the rest wanna cling to that Whiteness…
and I’ve made it quite clear about muthafuckas who would rather cling to Whiteness than vote in their own interests.
they can stay mad.
Cause nobody is playing with their asses and we are SO not ‘going back’.
Charlie Pierce just weighed in on Politico and Aqua Buddha.
Do you think the 1964 Nixon believed he would prevail at the 68 Convention?
Same here; I’m far to the left of the Democrats, but at this point we have a solid decade of federal elections demonstrating that the Left in America votes Democratic instead of third-party. And we don’t have any third-party movement at all; I think David Blight is quite right when he claims that successful third-party movements in America have always coalesced around a single important issue – an issue that cuts into existing political coalitions and forces reorganization.
Pot is not one of those issues. Immigration is not one of those issues. Gay marriage is not one of those issues. In all of these cases, liberals form the majority of support for the left-wing point of view, while conservatives form the majority of support for the right-wing point of view.
This hand-wringing over the eternal non-rise of libertarians comes from the same delusion as the libertarians entertain themselves: that a political division can be forced into play from the top down instead of coming from the ground up. There is no groundswell among socially liberal Democrats for economic conservatism – thus, there is no libertarian “threat”.
Libertarians have nothing to offer Democrats; Democrats will not vote for libertarians.
Quite right. In other words, they represent existing voting blocs and don’t indicate any point where a potential “libertarian” candidate could split the vote. Practically, this means that in most circumstances across the country, a “libertarian” Republican will always be forced to make traditionally conservative appeals during election that will turn off liberals.
There’s no crack where anyone could drive a wedge; if there were, I’d argue that it would be as self-evident to the media and the electorate as the issue of slavery was during the rise of the Republican Party.
I mean, Hohmann at Politico typed this in an attempt to prove that “libertarianism goes mainstream”:
It’s hard to imagine anything more stupid than the use of “looming triumph” in that sentence. Looming triumph over what? The same free-market, social conservative bloc that has existed in this country since Reagan, and that lost the election in 2012?
The entire point of Hohmann’s piece, which he well knows and yet cannot address honestly (for fear of explaining to the reader and the editor that there was no real reason for him to write it in the first place) is that “libertarians” like Rand Paul have gotten elected one way and one way only: they stopped being libertarians and became mainstream social conservatives.
Libertarianism hasn’t “gone mainstream”; it’s simply failed to get a foothold at all. And since that’s been the case for decades – since right-wing libertarianism emerged in America – it’s not news.
@Ben Franklin: Nixon was 100x smarter than either of the Pauls and a far better political operator. He is one of the reasons that your 1968 parallel does not hold.
Yes, please. Explain in detail what parallels you see between today and 1968 and why you think the similarities you see are more salient than the obvious differences. I’m not being sarcastic. Personally I think that is a very, very hard case to make, but I’d be interested in reading your opinion.
Oh, look, Maryland state senate just approved medical marijuana. O’Malley is campaigning hard for the dudebro vote. Although they won’t start dispensing until 2016.
@rikyrah: This is why I call him “Krugerrand” — because the “libertarian” golden currency wants to serve, as it once did, an apartheid government.
@Ben Franklin: @Ben Franklin:
It’s not meant to be an iron-clad analogy. Y’all are focused on the nuttiness of a minority of libertarians, and dismiss the threat. One thing they are doing is purloining a democratic gimme, civil liberties, just as Clinton blind-sided them with a conservative head-fake.
Nixon was toast, until he gerrymandered war weary Americans away from LBJ/HH solid democratic values.. :)
Nixon won narrowly, but Wallace was 3rd Party, remember? There were a lot of anti-war votes, which, although wasted gave Nixon enough air to feel he had a mandate to do whatever he wanted.
Permanent war is not healthy for Democrats and other living beings.
Except that they can’t do this, because people with liberal points of view on social issues and civil liberties are overwhelmingly people who wish that their representatives were more liberal on the issues where libertarians are more conservative.
This is exactly opposite to what happened during the Clinton years when a small but wealthy constituency of political donors wanted to eschew traditional conservative social positions while simultaneously supporting free-market conservative positions. Clinton offered them all of what they wanted. Rand Paul offers Democrats a handful of already Democratic positions and then a bunch of shit that Democrats adamantly oppose.
@Ben Franklin: So, it was meant to be a balsa wood or papier mache analogy? Two big civil liberties issues where Paul is nowhere: reproductive rights, voting rights. Weed and drones ain’t gonna cut it. We’re focusing on the fact that the issues where he is playing matter to a minority or single issue voters, not per se the nuttiness of that minority (although many of them are nuts).
It’s war, not the civil-liberties of that guy over yonder, that will drive the electorate.
They are weary of it(Assghanistan-drones, whatevs) and I sense a new urge toward
Isolationism, which is all in a day’s pay for Libertarians.
@Ben Franklin: So Obama pulling out of A-stan will mean nothing?
Nothing Obama does means anything to people who are looking for reasons to vote Republican.
Are there enough entitled upper middle class frat boys that the GOP can recruit as new GOPers to pull this off (like most of them are not GOP already)?
I guess the situation in other parts of the country is different from Northern and Central California, otherwise I would not see all these white dudebros being retro. But younger white dues from around where I grew up tend to lean lefty, unless their families have money. And fewer and fewer families have much money, seems like.
BTW, how is ‘dudebros’ pronounced? Since this I guess is part of a brilliant new strategy which is Good News for the GOP, I better larn how to say it. Dood-broaz? Or Dood-eh-broaz?
Probably the first syllable should be pronounced as in ‘dud’, IMHO. But that more realistic pronunciation would not Win the Morning, I guess.
I remember that right after the 2004 election, The Editors over at The Poor Man was really despondent, casting about for some way out of the terrible hole American politics seemed to be in, and proposed that Democrats had to go hard right on abortion, because it was the only possible way to stop the bleeding, by co-opting some of those conservative “values voters”.
Most of the commenters said “hell no”, of course. I pointed out that if they did that, some faction of the Republicans would probably miraculously become pro-choice and start getting votes because of it.
In fact, the Democrats did not do this, and recent developments suggest that this was very much the right decision. There was no way they were going to get those people anyway, and besides, the “values voters” were a shrinking cohort of old white people, and sometime around 2011-2012, it started actually being a political liability to pander to them too hard.
I wonder if the whole idea of Republicans going libertarian to get culturally liberal votes is the same basic kind of thing.
Because that strategy worked so well for them in the first four years that he was denied a fifth year in last November’s elections.
This, times a million.
There’s a breed of voters out there that’s just awake enough that they notice it when Republicans screw the pooch completely (e.g. end of the Bush and Reagan/Bush eras), but who still desperately want to believe that all the kool aid they were drinking was real and feverishly search for any reason why that’s true. People who voted Democrat in 1992 and 2008 because they could no longer ignore reality, but swung back in 1994 and 2010 because “OMG! They’re so extreme! And they haven’t fixed everything yet! QED!”
That’s not even the goal. The goal is to keep the Paul family electoral-industrial complex going. (I’m trying to find where I read it, but basically everything for the Paul campaign is done by Paul family owned or affiliated companies. A printer, tele-marketing, the works.)
@Calouste: Well yeah, there’s that too.
There were a bunch of paultards of various automotive forums I frequent who ended up voting for Obama, because Wallnuts and then Mittens were both such odious candidates.
They almost universally loathe Rand.
I think for reasons you previously mentioned. Democrats are better on almost every civil liberty point than any large L libertarian (but not small l libertariens like me) ;)
And by the end of next year, Obama will have drawn out of TWO wars. Also, dudebros don’t care about DROOONEZ.
Many of the die-hard Ron Paul guys that I know (and I know quite a few, because I teach on a college campus in the Midwest. Which is fertile ground for libertarian nonsense) despise Rand Paul possibly more than I do as a liberal.
They may come around as Daddy Liberty pushes his son more and more, but mostly they think he’s a generic Republican scumbag and not the awesome libertarian savior that Ron Paul is. (And I was proud to see that they saw through his bullshit filibuster more quickly than most liberals I know did.)
Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again)
I think your confusing war weariness with not wanting to be- or not wanting your sons, grandsons and nephews to be- drafted and sent off to die in a meat grinder of a war that made absolutely no sense at all. Nixon didn’t pick off the “War is not healthy for children and other living things” crowd, but the “You aren’t sending my kid over there” crowd.
Sorry I missed this during the exchange.
At this point, it’s the only thing he’s fulfilled campaign promises on, so he’s got that going for him.
But in the general context of his international behavior, he probably will not get any creds for pulling out of Afghanistan, even if that is a poor choice of verbiage.
Good fucking god.
I was referring to Int’l matters. ACA and DADT, notwithstanding.
Now go jump off a fucking bridge, and stop asking me your inanities.
LBJ greatly expanded the Viet Nam War and he passed Civil Rights and Voting Rights. The first of these turned off his liberal base and the latter two turned off the South, which had been a bastion of Democrats. Then, he didn’t run. Humphrey triangulated all those things in the usual Democratic tradition, which didn’t appeal to anyone.
I can certainly see Clinton, if she runs, triangulating her heart out, but, I don’t see any issues as new and big as Viet Nam and Civil Rights were back then, that the Rand Pauls and such can lock on to. There aren’t really any new big issues, like those issues were in 1968. The issues that will be a factor in 2016 are very likely to be the same issues as in 2012. Voters have already factored them into their vote.
That’s not to say 2016 is a lock. I can see, for example, Clinton toying with running right up until the primaries are about to start, then deciding not to run. That would completely mess up the Democratic field. We’ll also have to keep a very close watch on Republican efforts to steal elections by getting rid of all the folks that vote against them. But, on the issues, 2016 is ours for the taking.
You are as full of shit as Ted & Helen.
Still wrong. Just one example. And yeah, PolitiFact is meh as a source, but I can’t really be arsed to put much more effort into proving you wrong so it will have to do.
You seem to have gone above and beyond. Finding those nuggets must have cost you something, but you keep your job, so there’s that.
Just remember, the window dressing should not obscure the view from a picture window. Unless it’s your goal to obscure the view.