Friday, September 7, 2012

What I saw at the Republican National Convention

The real man smiles in trouble, gathers strength from distress, and grows brave by reflection. ~ Thomas Paine

Last  week at the Republican National Convention was indeed a week full of scripted appearances, fakery, and rules abuses. Many of you will read that line and say, “So what?” but you will say it for different reasons. Some will say, “So what?” because any tales told of scripted appearances, fakery, and rules abuses for the sake of unity will be what you’ve grown to expect from a party who has used the same tactics throughout this year’s caucus/primary process. Others will say, “So what?” because you will feel the fakery, rules abuses, and scripted appearances were done to prevent an unfair overthrow by a group of people whose candidate couldn’t garner popular support.

The Republican National Convention this week was nothing more than a giant party for delegates. No actual business took place. Sure, there was business a week earlier, but the votes during that business fell far short of what was needed to make the process accountable to the liberty-minded. Delegates were disqualified so that Ron Paul could not be nominated from the floor. Rules changes were pushed through so that local caucuses and conventions are now rendered meaningless.

So many long-time Republican Party folks misunderstand the gravity of the rules change. One nice man characterized it as a family fight that was quickly fixed so that all could come together. The idea of public dissent petrifies this party so much that three or four random folks from each state speaking out is horrifying. Young Paul supporters in Georgia elected as delegates at the District Level got publicly berated, chastised, and ostracized by some for refusing to help fake a unified front for Romney, instead of being accepted as holding a set of ideals different from the majority.

I've decided I don't want to be the person who tries to argue for reform with those long-serving members of the party. There doesn’t appear to be many long-serving people with any real desire to reform the party either. Most of the people I met are nice people personally. That isn't the issue. Their 'niceness' will never become enlightenment. I don't discount the possibility that maybe I am just a failed messenger, and that someone else may have better luck explaining how things could be more correct. But even our best messenger, Ron Paul, has taken 30 years to break through, if one can even call it that.  On some levels I credit the extremist, anti-liberty, pro-security-at-any-costs mindset that happened after 9/11 that caused the Liberty pendulum swing.  Ron Paul, luckily, was the benefactor of that.

It’s fairly obvious to me that party insiders expected some sort of uprising this week. A huge one. Full of violent revolt. I’m almost certain the secured perimeter was meant to be as intimidating to inexperienced participants as it was to outsiders. This only goes to show how little the party bosses knew about the Liberty Movement. All the protests, and there were multiple protests inside the convention, were peaceful. And, sadly, they were mostly theoretical. After all, if a tree falls in a forest and CNN doesn’t report it does it really make a sound? Some people who use the internet hear it, I guess. Maybe we are reaching a time where that’s all that matters.

Me (3rd from Left) with Georgia Paul supporters. Ann Romney glares disapprovingly in the background.