A Rand Paul Presidency would be a Disaster for Liberty and Libertarianism

Rand Paul has been touted as a libertarian Republican. In spite of the fact that he has claimed to not be a libertarian. This claim is also peculiar due to his statements about not wanting to end the War on Drugs. Not to mention his promotion of a “pro-life” anti-abortion rights bill. And his lack of belief in a borderless world. These are all positions contrary to radical libertarian principle.

Not only would we see a violation of said principle from a Rand Paul presidency, it would help sustain the present perception amongst many non-libertarians that libertarianism is reactionary. This will make it more difficult for left-libertarians to reach out to the non-libertarian left. Something not at all good for our cause.

Genuinely radical libertarian politics doesn’t require a constitutional conservative savior to coming to our rescue. It requires bottom up direct action. And this is precisely what a preoccupation with the presidency as a mechanism for change ignores. It can only contribute to a bizarre “libertarian” cult of personality surrounding the holder of executive power.

Such cults of personality have wreaked major havoc throughout human history. Mao and Stalin worship come to mind. Libertarians should strive to avoid a repeat of this. Of course, Rand Paul is not proposing Stalinism or Maoism, but, a cult of persona surrounding him could lead to him getting away with the liberty destroying measures mentioned above.

Presidential politics is just not the right thing for libertarians to be involved with. One only need look at the deference shown towards Obama and George W. Bush by their respective partisans. They can literally get away with murder due to the respect offered them.

The transcendence of aforementioned presidential politics is key to the project of liberty. A commander in chief is fit for a militarized society, but, not an egalitarian one. Industrial organization such as that championed by friends of liberty calls for equality rather than hierarchies of command. A Rand Paul presidency would be a setback for that project. It would wrap the mantle of the presidency in the aura of liberty. Something that would lead to disaster for actual freedom.

In lieu of voting for Rand Paul, libertarians can work to create liberty by labor organizing, copwatch programs, and other such grassroots efforts. All of this will do far more to help the most disadvantaged members of society than a Rand Paul presidency would.

Anarchy and Democracy
Fighting Fascism
Markets Not Capitalism
The Anatomy of Escape
Organization Theory