If this happens, it's definitely time for a third party -- Ron Paul should run as an Independent right now.
Entries in independent candidate (3)
Will 2012 be the year that the Information Age enables a grass roots President to bypass the old media and win? The internet has changed politics in ways of which none of us are fully aware, but I can make a prediction. I predict the power of the internet will undermine the old media's propaganda campaign, and Obama will be beaten by a New Style, economic-libertarian-minded Republican or even an independent.
I predict that many eligible votoers who haven't voted in recent years will go to the polls in record numbers, and they will mostly be against Big Goverment. If the Republican establishment has its way and nominates a Big Government Republican, Obama will win, unless a New Republican type who is blocked by the establishment goes independent.
Ron Paul has a good chance of being the candidate who bypasses the old state media, even if he has to go independent. I know it's a long shot, but when the election cranks up in earnest and people begin paying attention, Paul is the most honest and real candidate in the race, and the one who will buck the establishment. Paul is capable of explaining what it is people dislike about statism and our interventionist government.
This might not be the year, but from here on out, I doubt the old state media will be able to push candidates through like they pushed Obama through.
On Morning Joe today, one of the issues was Ron Paul winning the RLC straw poll by a huge margin. The Morning Joe regulars are kind to Paul, but none of them promote Paul as a serious candidate. The conventional wisdom is that Paul can't win. The Republican establishment will do everything in its power to block Paul from winning the nomination, yet Paul has a lot of support outside the political class.
I wish Paul would run as an independent. If we had more viable choices for President in the general election, we'd likely see surprising outcomes, but, as it is, the two party system controls our choices. Paul touches a chord with Americans who are fed up with Mideast wars and America's role as global police. Paul also touches a chord of public discontent with Big Government intervention in our economy. How large is this part of America which is basically anti-statist? I don't know, because the media frames any such talk as "extreme" and pushes it to the margins. If Paul would run as an Independent, at least we could see how much support there is for his ideas.
The experts will say that an Independent Paul will split the Republican vote and give the win to Obama, but if there is no real alternative to Obama/Bush statist policies, then I don't care if Obama wins -- however, something else might happen. About 45 % of qualified voters don't vote. Why? Maybe because they've been in political darkness previously, or maybe they are sceptical that their vote matters. I'm sure there are different reasons for different people, but it could be that a large number would vote for someone like Paul who has a truly radical plan to make big changes in government.
The Morning Joe crowd preaches mostly moderate, cautious politics, pragmatism and "conservative" common sense -- conservative is the sense of no radical changes, but rather an incremental set of compromises that finds a center balance. This is basically status quo maintenance with efforts toward improvement of the system in order to fashion a more efficient, responsive government.
This moderate pragmatism has benefitted progressive statists, because each compromise strengthens progressive moves to the Left. Moving to the Right means radical changes to limit the power of government, and the Left will never compromise in any meaningful way if it means permanently giving up power and control. Because the prevailing narrative was written by the political class, it's been sold through education and media, and the public has been indoctrinated to the vision of government as vital to safety, welfare security and social justice. Yet, in the recent decade, people in the private sector have gained insight into the mechanisms of statism, and alternative media are getting a hearing for an alternative narrative. How much influence the alternative narrative(s) have had is not known, but from much of the Tea Party reaction, there's indications that many Americans want to limit the power of government.
The political class status quo will not let go of power -- it will have to ripped from their clutches, so it's understandable that someone like Paul has an uphill battle. But, if Paul ran as an Independent, at least more voices can be heard, and the process of challenging the statist status quo can begin.