Ron Paul’s Legacy

Ron Paul will not get to speak at the GOP convention, but his legacy will hard to miss over the next decade of American politics. His son is now a Senator in Kentucky, and his Audit the Fed bills have lots of bi-partisan support (in the House anyway; Senators, for some strange reason, seem to like the Federal Reserve an awful lot).

His foreign policy, which initially attracted me to libertarian ideas, is the most important legacy, however. I can tell because the GOP loathes it so much that they won’t give Congressman Paul the time of day they know they need for his support.

From Foreign Policy:

But the committee also tackled pressing foreign-policy questions — and the debates that ensued speak to the divisions that lurk behind the cohesive worldview the party will present to the nation next week […]

the GOP’s struggle to reconcile presumptive nominee Mitt Romney’s embrace of American exceptionalism with Texas Rep. Ron Paul’s considerably more modest vision of American power […]

The Republican pledge to cut government spending has not extended to the military, driving a wedge between Ron Paul supporters, who want to scale back costly foreign adventures, and the Republican base […]

At the platform committee meeting, Christopher Stearns, a Paul supporter and delegate from Virginia, raised concerns about language opposing impending automatic cuts to defense spending, known as sequestration. “These cuts are not cuts,” he explained. “They are cuts out of proposed increases over the course of a decade. We need to be honest with ourselves when we’re addressing these issues.”

The effort failed, however, and the plank resisting sequestration remains in the platform. The document also calls for a constitutional amendment requiring a supermajority in Congress “for any tax increase with exceptions for only war and national emergencies.” […]

Romney has criticized Obama for announcing a withdrawal timetable for Afghanistan, though both candidates have been pretty downbeat about the unpopular war. But at the platform committee meeting, Richard Ford, a delegate from Rhode Island and Ron Paul supporter, went one step further, proposing that the party add a line in the document declaring, “the Obama administration has made the mistake of following the failed and dangerous policy of nation-building.”

“Nation-building is a failed policy of the Democrats and we Republicans need to go back to the humble foreign policy of George Bush before 9/11,” he stated. “We need to go back to not creating democracies overseas that create Islamic regimes, and go back to the goal of getting our enemies and bringing our troops home as soon as possible.” […]

Ron Paul and his son Rand joined a push to defend the Internet from government regulation back in July, and the issue now appears to have made its way into the Republican platform. The Daily Caller has received language that would amount to the first GOP plank on “Internet freedom.” […]

Taken together, these contentious issues highlight the divisions between the Republican Party’s Romney-style internationalists and Paul-style noninterventionists heading into the convention. The congressman from Texas scored some successes during the platform-drafting process, including calls for an audit of the Federal Reserve and a commission to consider a return to the gold standard. But while Paul will get a video tribute in Tampa, his differences with Romney on foreign policy will be downplayed — for a few days, at least.

You can read the rest of the article here, though I’ve highlighted all the good stuff (promise!). What struck me was that the author of an interventionist magazine labeled Ron Paul’s foreign policy views “modest”. This may be a ploy aimed at subtly attacking the Romney campaign, of course, but it still came as a bit of a surprise because of the magazine’s past positions.

One thought on “Ron Paul’s Legacy

  1. Foreign Policy may be interventionist, but they are of the pragmatic wing, not the neoconservative wing. The Kissingers of this world are more subtle and less reactionary than the Wolfowitzs.

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