Saturday, March 3, 2012

A 'Super' decision

So-called "Super Tuesday," including Ohio's primary, is less than 72 hours away. Since I won't be voting to give Pres. Barack Obama a second term -- not on Tuesday and not in November -- I've been paying close attention to what the Republican Party has to offer.

Not much, really.

But because I oppose Obama, I guess I'm supposed to choose among Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum. Such conventional wisdom presents me with (respectively) an unprincipled dolt with deep pockets, a nutty professor who rises in the polls only when he quarrels with those who buy their ink by the barrel, and a Benedictine acolyte who campaigns as if Jesus is the answer to our economic woes.
Did you ever have to make up your mind?
Pick up on one and leave the other behind
It's not often easy, and not often kind
Did you ever have to make up your mind?
At a time when government is both broken and broke, every one of those candidates would expand it. Gingrich's idea-a-minute approach to governing, for example, spends money faster than China could lend it to us. Romney doesn't seem to have an approach at all, so he'd choose "all of the above" to avoid offending anyone. And Santorum, the guy who's hailed by neo-cons as the only true conservative in the race, does talk about shrinking the scope of government -- that is, as long as it's allowed to invade our bedrooms.

No, thanks.

The biggest difference between the 2008 presidential campaign and this year's (so far) is that today we're hearing more about matters of constitutional principle. Things like individual liberties and personal responsibility, global interventionism and bureaucratic dinosaurs, states' rights and out-of-control entitlements -- these now are part of our national conversation.

There's a reason for that, and his name is Ron Paul.

No, he doesn't have a shot at winning the GOP nomination or even the Ohio primary, but that's not the point. Neither is unseating the incumbent -- it's absurd to believe that it's in the best interest of our country, short-term or long-term, to replace a bloated-government Democrat with a bloated-government Republican.
Did you ever have to finally decide?
Say yes to one and let the other one ride
There's so many changes, and tears you must hide
Did you ever have to finally decide?
The issues that matter to Paul are issues that matter to me. His principles are, by and large, my principles. For the sake of our nation, the debate he's helped to shape must continue. If that's to happen, independent citizens must raise principled voices at the polls.

On Tuesday, this citizen will raise his voice in support of Ron Paul.

*The Lovin' Spoonful, 1966