I’ve written here before about how I became involved in Republican Party politics because I wanted to make a positive difference. But, after a few years, I came to realize that I was not going to make any difference. The party system, Republican and Democrat, is less about principle and doing the right thing than it is about money, power, special interests, and patronage. It is rotten to the core. Even the best of men, with the best of intentions are sucked into the rottenness of the system. At the very least they are forced to compromise formerly-strong convictions about what they once understood to be right and wrong.
Yes, I am cynical. I’ve been far enough inside the beast to know it is out of control and does not serve the best interests of America.
There are, however, a few men who participate in the political system beyond the local level and refuse to be tainted by the snares of power and arrogance. Such men refuse to be bought. They refuse to compromise on the basic principles of right and wrong. But there are precious few such men. And if they do not bend to fit the system's mold, they are marginalized. In time, they get disillusioned (like me), and they either leave political office or loose reelection for lack of support. The system doesn't like “traitors.”
Only in the rarest of instances, and against all odds, does such a public servant remain in political office for any significant length of time. Only in the rarest of instances does such a man press on for years, steadfast in his principles. And only in the very rarest of instances, especially in modern history, does such a man run for president of the United States of America, and actually have a chance of achieving that position.
I firmly believe Congressman Ron Paul of Texas is such a rare man. Even the most politically cynical of citizens can not help but be encouraged by Ron Paul’s candidacy for our country’s highest office. Which is to say, I am encouraged by the very real possibility of Ron Paul actually winning in 2008.
In fact, with the Iowa and New Hampshire primaries looming large on the horizon, I’ve done something I have never done before. I’ve done something I thought I would never do. I contributed money to the campaign of a presidential candidate.
I have known about Ron Paul for 20 years. I have known him to be a champion of limited, Constitutional government, individual freedom, and a sound money system. Ron Paul is an honorable man, an intelligent man, a man of integrity, and a brave man. He is not a perfect man and therefore not a perfect candidate, but his track record clearly shows him to be a truly exceptional person who, I believe, can be trusted to do the right thing if elected to office.
I have a friend who has a lot of high level political experience. He is very astute. He loves Ron Paul. He believes he is, by far, the best candidate for President. But he says it is a virtual impossibility that Ron Paul will be elected.
My friend says Paul’s appeal is with the left and right fringes. He says the vast political body between those fringes is part of the “bread and circus” crowd. He insists they will not vote for Paul. He says Guiliani, Romney, Obama, and Clinton are part of “bread and circus” politics, and he believes Obama will prevail. That kind of talk gives me a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach.
I fear that my friend may be right. I fear that America will end up with the President it deserves, not the President in needs.
Nevertheless, I hope and pray for something amazing to happen in this next election, something that defies all the odds. It would be a flat-out miracle if Paul were to win this next election. But I believe in miracles.
Iowa and New Hampshire are the first arenas of battle and they are critically important. Paul must do well there. He can do well there. Fact is, he actually appears to be doing well there. If this man is willing to fight the good fight, against the odds, I will stand with him. I have supported him with my money. I am supporting him with this essay. Before the end of the year, I will probably contribute again.
If nothing else, my sons will know that I did something to try and help make a difference in this election. I supported a decent, godly man in a battle for right, against all the odds. This might well be the last opportunity for a long time to get such a good man into this office.
I urge you to check out the Ron Paul 2008 website. Read where Paul stands on the issues. Contribute money to help in the battle. Talk to your family and friends about him. Spread the word. Miracles do happen.
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