The 10-term congressman from Texas has been a strict constitutionalist since he came into public life some 30 years ago.
An Absolute Faith in Free Markets and Less Government
I am a Ron Paul supporter, but I cannot agree to the idea of “absolute faith in free markets”. Free markets work most of the time, but it would be plainly dishonest to overlook the times where the market has slipped into situations which are not in the best interest of the consumer, manipulated into that position by a few powerful men in dominant positions of control in powerful corporations. In cases such as that, regulation by the government is entirely justified and appropriate.
Examples: Net Neutrality (which Ron Paul sadly voted against with the notion that the government shouldn’t regulate the internet, as if government were the only threat to our freedoms, overlooking the threat from corporations). Internet access has devolved into an oligopoly by market forces; market forces are leading the dominant companies to consider tactics such as considering the content of the traffic they carry in the determination of the prices they charge. This NEEDS government regulation for the protection of our freedoms. It is naive to simply say “the market knows best; let it work it out”. People can’t simply stop subscribing to their net access and switch to a competitor in many cases because broadband internet is an oligopoly, and if all of the handful of the major players are violating net neutrality, there’s nothing consumer choice can do to change that.
Example 2: How Microsoft killed Netscape, among others. This is another example of a company using a dominant position to crush competition, hurting the consumer in the long run. Look at the piece of crap that is IE6 and you’ll see what happens when the Market equilibrates in a bad place. The Market does not always result in fair outcomes! Not all players in a market fight fair, and sometimes regulation is necessary.
With that said, I still think Ron Paul is a better candidate than any of the rest.