The Corner

Invisible Man

Jon Stewart on Ron Paul.

Radio Derb on Ron Paul last week:

Paul could never get elected President because the number of Americans who desire liberty is now smaller, much smaller, than the number who desire a dole. Still he was in a sense the most valuable of the candidates on Thursday night’s stage, the Spirit of Christmas Past, croaking away there, however ineffectually, to remind us of what we once were: a nation of free citizens, trading whatever energies and abilities we had in a free marketplace. We are not like that any more, and never shall be again; but perhaps by reminding us of our old ideals of liberty, Dr. Paul is keeping a little flame burning in the gathering gloom.

Dr. Paul is cranky, tongue-tied, old, and unelectable. Didn’t you feel though, as I did, that there were a couple of moments there, when he was talking about liberty, that he was the only American on the platform, the rest of them just stuffed shirt mandarins transported in a time machine somehow from Imperial China?

Ron Paul was the conscience of America in that hall, reminding the dwindling numbers of us that are willing to be reminded, that managerial bureaucratism is not the only possible style in internal governance, nor imperial aggrandisement the only style in external governance.

John Derbyshire — Mr. Derbyshire is a former contributing editor of National Review.

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