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Comment: Well done Rand

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Well done Rand

I read many a comment section before this like that of the Huffington Post that were champing at the bit to skewer him on this speech. They made all kinds of fallacious straw man arguments about him and his "supposed" positions to viciously practice on. Despite what they envisioned happening he did well and probably changed a few minds about him.

With this speech whether the audience agreed with a lot of what he had to say or not, (and I think many did agree, even if reluctantly) I think more than anything he changed their perception of who he is and what brand of republicanism he represents. It's not the same that most are familiar with and loathe. He's not some cartoon caricature of a stereotypical incompetent intolerant ignorant villainous republican they love to hate. He came across as an intelligent, pragmatic, real person, not some fake, stiff, plastic out of touch would be dictator like some other republicans. He showed them a different side. He showed what Republicanism used to stand for, and should stand for, and the kind which he will be championing going forward and that there was an alternative to the Democrat monopoly on their vote.

It was a very tricky tight rope walk between stating his principles and beliefs about government to a not so sympathetic crowd while also not totally dismissing or denigrating opposing views and concerns. He was there to show what his philosophy has to offer and promote understanding not so much to be confrontational and disagreeable. He was successful in this regard. Also while on that tight rope he had to balance knowing that his party and leadership would be watching his every word and move at Howard. He stuck up for the republican party and was careful not throw it completely under the bus for their egregious offenses, incompetence and buffoonery of recent years, earning him credit with the party and leadership, while still being able to point out and recognize many instances where the party has failed and needs to improve earning credit with his audience.

A very nuanced non confrontational approach that was safe but still impactful on various levels. I believe many from the left who may have been in opposition with Rand previously will be left with a different opinion of him and what he represents. Will they continue to distrust and malign Republicans, most likely and I dont blame them, but I think they will see Rand as a different breed and may be more disposed to hear him and those like him out. He's at least honest and straight forward about what he believes and why. Sometimes his answers arent exactly clear cut and dry, they leave much wiggle room, but they are sincere and not just answers to shmooze you over. He's very real and pragmatic about it while still trying to honor the ideal behind it.

I hope he continues to do more of these speeches. The great thing about liberty is that it is unafraid to go anywhere. That's why Ron could go to just about any university whether liberal of conservative and be well received. Your run of the mill republican statist can't do that. They'd be run out on a rail going to places like Howard or Berkeley. Why? because like Rand said, he wants to let them write their own book, whereas most republican statists want to write it for them and in their view against them. The latter is threating and unwelcome the former is refreshing, inviting, inspiring but challenging because it requires you to actually take up the pen and write your book yourself. Some would rather someone else write it for them, but with sunshine and puppies and many happy endings. The prospect of being left alone by the government to pursue your own happy ending is a frightening thought to some as the last student in the Q&A demonstrated by saying he doesnt want the government to leave him alone. A very sad statement... For too long people have been given the choice between "Do what I say. I know best." and " Here's a bunch of free stuff vote for us". Now when someone comes along and says "you're free to do what YOU want to do, but expect no handouts" it's quite shocking. Some see the incredible freedom and opportunity in that, others look at that prospect in horror as if having their crutch knocked out of their hand. They don't know how they will survive. I think Rand did a good job assuaging fears. He essentially said he didnt want to knock the crutch out, that there is a place for government, but that rehabilitation through an improved economy will be better in the long run than relying on a crutch that will never help you get any better.

Any way I hope Rand goes forward fearlessly speaking wherever he is allowed to and even places he isnt. Good on him.