Tuesday, February 12, 2008

A Letter to A Republican Friend

You know, I was never one of these starry-eyed people who thought that Ron Paul was bound to win, no matter what. I believe Ron Paul could win, if nothing went disastrously wrong. And I still say it – he could have won, damn it.

Ron Paul was not a RINO, like some other candidates. He was at that precarious edge where conservatism and libertarianism meet – you can call him a conservative or a libertarian and be equally right.

You and I are not really different in our views. We both want the income tax gone, we want the government reduced in size and in power, we want the Constitution, we want our freedom. And you know, Ron Paul would have helped us both a whole damn lot. Oh, sure, he wouldn't repeal all the steaming piles of New Deal crap- sorry, regulations and taxes – in one day. Nobody can. But he'd have cut a thick, quivering, slice right out of Shelob's belly and you know it, too. And even had he not won, we'd have given them a good fight – you and I, together.

Do you imagine it, now? Imagine the Presidential debate, Ron Paul versus Hillary Clinton, Hillary trotting out the same old statist solutions – "ban guns, raise taxes, destroy private enterprise" – and Ron Paul arguing, not for a different statist solution – "regulate guns, raise taxes" – but for something actually different. Imagine an actual stand-up fight between Hillary – the very embodiment of everything wrong with the American Left – and Ron Paul. It would have been the Battle of Yavin all over again. Even if we didn't win, we'd create a real alternative for them. There'd be a fight, a real fight for freedom.

And yet we're not getting that fight. Instead, the GOP will run McCain or someone very like him. You know what that means? Either Hillary wins – and that's not going to be nice in any shape or meaning of the word – or McCain wins. Which is even worse.

Any economist will tell you that people repeat activities which benefit them. Any zoologist will tell you that even an octopus can be taught to repeat an activity that benefits it. Operating on the tenuous assumption that the GOP leadership posesses at least the IQ of a piece of invertebrate seafood, if they can win by running a McCain for office, that this is what they'll do. Again and again.

McCain is indistinguishable from a Democrat in any of his major positions, except, of course, his desire to bomb stuff abroad (which many Democrats hold to as well). Elect him, run a guy like him for office in 2016, and you will destroy American conservatism. There will be a political spectrum not unlike the one in Europe – Welfare-State Party R and Welfare-State Party D.

And unfortunately, I have a very personal reason to care, even though I am not an American at all. You see, what happens in America reflects on the world entire. When Reagan cut taxes and deregulated business, his example was followed in dozens of countries. America doesn't have to invade countries to lead the world – it leads by example, too, whether it wants to or not. And now you are all set to give the world a terrible example.

Should the mantle of the Welfare-State descend upon America completely – as it seems to be about to – there will be no visible alternative. If America adopts gun licensing, universal compulsory education, huge taxes, Europe-style, there will no longer be an alternative for anybody to point to, no longer an prototype to call upon of how different things can be, no longer a source of libertarian ideas and conservative examples.

Damn it, man, you could have voted for Fred Thompson. At least the man had ideas. You could have voted for Tancredo. What, have you deliberately searched for the most unprincipled, most socialist, most un-conservative man in the entire Republican party? Have you decided that you will ruin what's best in America, no matter what it costs?

I know you'll be stamping your feet and calling me a fanatic. It's awesome how the 'moderates' are quickest to stamp their feet and call other people names when someone questions the value of their moderation – but you know, maybe that's a good sign. Maybe that's because, deep in your heart, you, too, wished you could have a real candidate, someone who would actually challenge the status-quo.

But maybe you're not like that. Maybe you just didn't vote for Ron because you didn't like his foreign policy. Don't you feel stupid now, lying there with your own foot on your throat? Here, you can have your wonderful war that you so wanted – it's just that you can't have any guns, or freedom, or gold to go with it. You ended up with a guy who promised you the war you wanted, but you have nothing else. Nothing.

Don't you feel like a fool now, sitting there and slurping on that bean soup you traded your bithright for?

Oh, I know what you're going to say. You're going to claim that I hate Jews and Israel, and so on. Except of course, I'm an Israeli citizen. My ID card number is 307333377 so you can verify this claim. Like that term, 'ID card'? Israel has national ID cards. Soon enough, you will have a shiny new one, too.

I want you to realize, deep in your mind, what a McCain vs. Clinton race means, for America, for the world, for everybody. It means America no longer has any meaningful opposition to the marauding, all-prevailing, State, outside of several think tanks and two or three Congressmen. It'll take decades until someone runs on a real small-government platform. I'll be 31 by the time whoever wins the next election leaves office.

The incrementalist socialists took about 70 years to get government to the size it is today – if you start counting from FDR. About 95 years if you start counting from Wilson.

Do you want to bet on how old I can be until we can cut government back to its proper size – the size at which we can buy M1928 Thompsons over the counter, never fill out an income tax form, never fear a government agent seizing our children and business and everything we hold dear? How old will I be then, you Quisling? 70? 90? 100?

That's your legacy, you moron. You destroyed the only meaningful chance you, me, anybody who's reading this letter, ever had to actually experience what a free society would be like. Oh we can work for our children, for our principles, just to poke Leviathan in his eye. But we will never, ever, ever get to experience what it's actually like.

Imagine if we were characters in A New Hope. Imagine how the rebels would have felt if Rebel Command would have looked at those Death Star blueprints, with the thermal exhaust port marked out good and clear, and said "Let's surrender. It's not like an X-wing can actually get in there." That's how a lot of people feel right now. Because that's what you did.

I hope you feel proud.

Boris Karpa is a columnist and libertarian activist in Israel. He can be reached through microbalrog@gmail.com


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