Roger L. Simon

Rand Paul: Sleeping with the Enemy at Berkeley


Whatever you think of Rand Paul, he’s actually doing something that politicians rarely do — talking at length to audiences who don’t usually agree with him.  And winning over new friends in the process. His recent speech at UC Berkeley, where he apparently got a standing ovation for excoriating runaway government spying on Americans, is only the latest example.

Historically, the Republican Party has been just what the public thinks it is, largely a bunch of risk-averse white men who are totally clueless at public relations, even though they are on the right (correct) side of almost every issue.  Meanwhile, the liberal Democrats haven’t had a decent rational argument about anything for years, if they ever did. They ream young people, blacks and virtually every other “interest group”that supports them with their policies and they still win most national elections.  What a disgraceful group of losers that makes the Republicans. There are literally thousands of chips on the table and they’re leaving them all behind.

Rand Paul is smart enough to realize this and actually goes out and does things about it. Other Republicans should get out their little red book of quotations and Learn from Chairman Rand.  The country is changing.  Whole new groups are ripe for the picking, most obviously the young who are being so completely raked over by the Obama administration via Obamacare and the rest of the entitlements so many of them know they will never see. They were ready to applaud at Berkeley.

And African Americans — when, since the end of Jim Crow, have they done worse than under the Obama administration with its record black unemployment numbers and horrifying statistics on out-of-wedlock births in their community?   Consciously or unconsciously, Democrats have been waging a “War on Blacks” since the days of the Great Society.  It’s been a disaster for African  Americans, a nightmare, in truth.

But where are the Republicans, the party of Lincoln, on that?  They should be in the black communities talking to them about it, suggesting ways to make things better. Instead, they just sit around getting annoyed when the Democrats call them racists.   Play offense, not defense.

That goes for the RINOS and the Tea Party that has had notable success in preaching to the choir, but shown little interest in going outside it.  Pointing to a handful of black members is not going outside. You have to go into their community.  Paul has.  He went to Detroit with a proposal for economic freedom zones.

Republicans need more of this, in fact they need a bombardment of creative plans.  Change the dialogue.  The administration has nothing and can have nothing because “liberalism” in its modern form is bankrupt.  Everybody knows that.  They don’t even make an effort anymore beyond some dopey commercials with movie stars and basketball players. Even Obamacare may not have to be repealed.  It hardly exists now and may simply disappear.

I suspect, given how bad things have been the last 5-6 years, the country is ready to hear some radical proposals, like truly massive cuts to federal government programs  and a flat tax, maybe even, as Rick Perry suggested in the last election cycle, the complete elimination of some government departments.  He called for three.  How about four?

I am NOT one, however,  who thinks we should be cutting defense at all at this present time, given what’s going on across the globe from Caracas to Tehran.  That’s where I might diverge from Citizen Rand.  I get nervous when I read columns from his father about the Crimea.  Maybe Old Ron never visited the Soviet Union.  I did.  It was a jail the size of a continent. It went away for awhile, but unfortunately Evil Empires have  a way of coming back.

In any case, we shall see how Rand reacts to all this in the fullness of time. The way things are going, I suspect he won’t be able to avoid it.