I'm recently back from an almost three week trip campaigning for Ron Paul. As a philosophical anarchist and defiantly proud non-voter, I should first state my reasons for going.
The United States government has grown into a tremendous beast. Nearly half of our wages and earnings are taxed before or while we spend it, our property, actions and decisions are ensnared in a dense and growing web of regulation and the loot taken from is used to finance destruction at home and abroad; I don't subscribe to the view that man is an island, common in libertarian circles due to the unfortunate influence of Ayn Rand.
The political world operates on an ideological track and an "activist" track. The American revolution was fought by men with an intense interest in the ideological foundations of liberty and men who were willing to act upon those ideals, fighting the British and eventually striving to set up a government in which our God-given rights would be practically preserved. Seven years ago, Bob Murphy audaciously predicted that 1% of the population would be market anarchists by 2007. Having talked with many "Ron Paul" revolutionaries, while that number has probably not yet been reached, it has surely gone up by many orders of magnitude, because of the political activism associated with Ron Paul's campaign. What we did in Iowa and later in South Carolina was rational evangelism, combined with political acumen. I met a number of market anarchists on the trip, many of whom did not believe there were so many. Add the number of people who are anarchists philosophically and there is definitely over 1% of the current population that are market anarchists. The ideological aspect of campaigning for Ron Paul is the strongest and most vibrant aspect of the campaign.
I do confess, however, that in the process of campaigning I got caught up in the politicking and began to get a little too optimistic about the short term possibilities. I still think it is possible for Ron Paul to get elected, but I think the groundwork has not yet been laid for it to be very likely. It's not even that we need a majority, because we don't, but a strong and tireless minority, of maybe 5%, to sow the critical brushfires of liberty.
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