Arlen Specter lost, and Rand Paul won – that is not just big, it’s Joe Biden big.
You could not find two better poster-kids than Mr. Specter and Dr. Paul for what is wrong with this country and what might save it, respectively.
Specter served in the Senate for 24 years, while this is Paul’s first crack at public office. Specter is a regular on the Sunday talk shows, while Paul couldn’t buy his way on. Specter ran on ObamaCare; Paul practices actual health care. Specter is an eager Party switcher, Paul hardly mentions Party.
Specter picked a fight with the tea party movement; Paul is the darling of tea partiers across the nation. Specter has only one principle – Arlen Specter – while Paul is a man of principled libertarian beliefs. Specter had President Obama’s endorsement; Paul fought against the endorsements of the GOP establishment.
Specter is the latest casualty of the anti-establishment trend that has been building over the past year in special elections, primaries, and local contests. Rand is the latest to surf the wave. Libertarians love the guy; his reach transcends party labels.
The new winning formula: a principled libertarian-minded outsider candidate backed by Tea Partiers, libertarians, constitutionalists, fiscal conservatives, federalists, anti-militarists, small business owners, taxpayers, Fed-enders, school-choicers, gun-righters, first-time-activists, and rank and file workers across the spectrum.
And the new losing formula: unprincipled incumbent lifer, vote-whore, RepubloCrat Party hack, backed by special interests, big business, union bosses, party establishment, ventriloquist dummy media, bankers, and the whole of the entitlement industry, both personal and corporate.
This nation is being divided up into two camps, choose your own labels: producers and dependents, taxpayers and tax-eaters, the looters and the looted. Individual liberty has been sacrificed to create group favors, and economic liberty has been plundered to fund wealth re-distribution schemes.
Carving the nation up into givers and takers has been done with the sharp knives of race, class, religion, gender, orientation, generation, eco-morality, indebtedness, Party affiliation – any means necessary to manufacture victims from whole cloth and to smear opponents as racist, greedy, ignorant, or fascist.
The purveyors of division assumed that the looters would reward them with votes of gratitude into perpetuity, while the looted would remain complacent forever. Wrong on both counts: looters feel no sense of gratitude, and the looted get angry.
Tuesday’s vote was an angry vote; anger directed squarely at those who have set themselves above the laws they pass, the people they represent, and the Constitution they swore an oath to uphold.
Liberty lovers everywhere celebrate the victory of Rand Paul and the rejection of Arlen Specter. Together, they tell us it is not too late to take our country back.
Moment Of Clarity" is a weekly commentary by Libertarian writer and speaker Tim Nerenz, Ph.D. Visit Tim’s website www.timnerenz.com to find your moment.