Does Bob Barr Continue the Ron Paul Revolution?

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Yes, says Justin Raimondo, if Barr runs as an antiwar populist, though that would offend the kochosphere.

“[Populism], of course, is the element in the Paul campaign that most alienated the more ‘cosmopolitan’ elements of the libertarian movement, and in large part motivated their campaign to vilify the good doctor. This time, they’ll doubtless either latch on to something similar, or else focus on two areas of special interest to left-libertarians: immigration and gay marriage. There is no appeasing them: if you oppose either, you’re highly suspect, in spite of credible libertarian arguments to the contrary. Such minor matters as the Iraq war, or the possible invasion of Iran, pale in significance. Who cares about mass murder by the state if two gay guys can’t file a joint tax return?“No doubt the libertarian movement’s self-appointed guardians of political correctness will try to cram candidate Barr into their Procrustean bed, but I don’t think it’s a fit. Yet these pretentious sideliners will only underscore their own irrelevance as the twin rivers of antiwar sentiment and populism propel the Barr campaign into history-making territory – that is, if the Barr people play their cards right.

“The left-populism of Obama’s appeal can be easily served by the right-populism of, say, a Ron Paul, whose views on the Federal Reserve have some resonance with the foreclosed and the unemployed, as well as with small-business owners and the beleaguered middle classes. If Barr replicates Paulian populism, he could appeal to those voters who yearn for a slightly more radical change than Obama promised.

“A Barr campaign could, in short, do for the antiwar movement and the libertarian movement what their hearts most desire: defeat the War Party and create an electoral alternative to the defeated, worn-out, sold-out husk of the GOP.”

8:44 am on April 7, 2008