Why Ron Paul Cannot Be President
John Derbyshire who is, admittedly, a conservative, has a mostly positive piece about the Paul phenomenon at National Review Online where he tries to figure out why more conservatives aren’t supporting Ron Paul. In the process, he comes up with the reason that Ron Paul cannot be President:
If Washington, D.C. were the drowsy southern town that Warren Harding and Calvin Coolidge rode into, Ron Paul would have a chance. Washington’s not like that nowadays, though. It is a vast megalopolis, every nook and cranny stuffed with lobbyists, lawyers, and a hundred thousand species of tax-eater. The sleepy old boulevards of the 1920s are now shadowed between great glittering ziggurats of glass and marble, where millions of administrative assistants to the Department of Administrative Assistance toil away at sending memos to each other.
Few of these laborers in the vineyards of government do anything useful. (In my experience — I used to have to deal with them — few do anything much at all.) Some of what they do is actually harmful to the nation. On the whole, though, we have settled in with this system. We are used to it. It’s not going away, absent a revolution; and conservatives are — duh! — not, by temperament, revolutionaries.
Imagine, for example, President Ron II trying to push his bill to abolish the IRS through Congress. Congress! — whose members eat, drink, breathe and live for the wrinkles they can add to the tax code on behalf of their favored interest groups! Or imagine him trying to kick the U.N. parasites out of our country. Think of the howls of outrage on behalf of suffering humanity from all the lefty academics, MSM bleeding hearts, love-the-world flower children, Eleanor Roosevelt worshippers, and bureaucratic globalizers!
Ain’t gonna happen. It was, after all, a conservative who said that politics is the art of the possible. Ron Paul is not possible. His candidacy belongs to the realm of dreams, not practical politics. But, oh, what sweet dreams!
Unfortunately, I think that Derbyshire’s analysis of what American politics and government have become is spot on. If Thomas Jefferson were to suddenly appear in the middle of K Street today, does anyone really think that he’d be pleased with how things have turned out, or that he’d be greeted by the political classes once he starts talking about pesky little things like freedom ?
No, I don’t either.
And, that, in the end, is why I don’t think Ron Paul has a chance. It’s not because there’s anything wrong with him. It’s because there is too much wrong with the system.