Someone worth supporting?

Dave Killion — November 22, 2011

The book club originally began as a Ron Paul meetup group, and many of our members are still Paul-boosters despite living in Canada. It is very heartening to see Paul becoming an increasingly viable option in the race for the Republican nomination for the US Presidency. On the other hand, there are some in the group who question the wisdom of placing much, if any, faith in either government or the political process. I think they have a strong argument, since we know from both experience and Public Choice Theory that politicians face powerful incentives to behave in ways that are incompatible with the best interests of the public. It follows that while a Ron Paul presidency might be the least of evils, it will still be far from a good thing. Even if Paul were elected, would the US simply revert to its authoritarian ways after he serves?

In search of reassurance, I emailed the Rio Grande Foundation (New Mexico’s free market think tank). New Mexico is a ‘blue’ state, yet elected libertarian Gary Johnson governor for two terms. I asked –

“Since the departure of Governor Gary Johnson, has New Mexico continued to move in a socially liberal, economically conservative direction?”

President Paul Gessing replied –

“Yes, that would be a generally-correct assessment. Richardson¬†dramatically reduced income tax and capital gains tax rates. He also¬†eliminated the death penalty.”

So, New Mexico may not be libertarian paradise, but the election of a libertarian has had long-term benefits. Since the US is going to have president of one sort or another, rooting for Paul might be a good idea.

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