For those interested in a single-source for current news and whatnot on Ron Paul, here’s an unofficial blog that seems to be doing a pretty good job rounding up everything of interest so you don’t have to. So throw that puppy into your RSS reader if you like.
I highly doubt Paul could ever win this thing (primary or general) — but he is a U.S. Congressman of several terms so it’s certainly within the realm of possibility. He’s getting traction right now because what he’s saying (about the war, mostly) resonates both with conservatives who somewhat understand some of the moral imperative behind the war but are tired of it and democrats who are mostly amoral about the thing, count up the number of dead, and because there’s more of them than us, conclude that we’re the badder bad guy.
It’s difficult, in hindsight, for me to look back to post WWII and not conclude that plastering military bases in Europe and Asia wasn’t the geopolitically smart thing to do. It seems to have worked out. We never went to war with the USSR and my guess is we never will with Russia, at least on the scale that thing could have gone down.
But this all seemed to work because the Europeans and Asians, in general, wanted us there and were pretty welcoming most of the time. They saw our presence as stabilizing and comforting. They were rational. The Middle East is not, at least not in that sense. How can you really account for how a kid growing up in that god-forsaken desert acculturates and integrates the fact of a foreign military power based in, on, and around his homeland? I think we have ample evidence to make a pretty good guess how it’s going to work out, eh? But then, who knows for sure? As a former Navy officer who has ventured outside the gates of many a U.S. military base on foreign soil, I was always amazed at how welcome we were. But I think that has a lot to do with the dollars we carry out those gates and our (often drunken) willingness to spend them, as the saying goes: "on wine, women and song (the rest we waste)."
Here’s what you can bet your ass is going to happen. The Republicans and Fox News are soon enough going to realize that Paul can’t be beaten on the war issue. It’s just such a disastrous mess that it really takes no great insight to make the gains Paul has made. It’s more the fact that he’s the only Republican saying it — the rest just spouting party line with sufficient microns of difference that they and their gleaming camera smiles can try to STAND OUT. So watch for this thing to soon turn domestic. Just wait until Paul is confronted with voting against school lunches, or more cops on the street, or against the latest "safety" fad forced upon you at gunpoint. Virtually every American has a pet must that Paul is against and voted against if he had the chance.
See, you can be a constitutional congressman. You can’t be a constitutional president. Presidents are elected to find ways around the Constitution and it’s been working fabulously for over 200 years. Presidents began ignoring the constitution sooner than the ink was dry on the thing. Presidents exist and are elected as a giant euphemism for King. The only real difference is that when the good King you put in power becomes the bad King a few years later, you get to replace him with another good King and the cycle continues.
I think Ron Paul sincerely doesn’t want to be King, which disqualifies him. You’ll see.