More than two years ago, I warned what would happen to the Tea Parties if they heard the siren song of conservative Republicans. The Tea Parties did hear it, voted for “Tea Party Republicans” and now mostly find themselves out in the cold. It is thus with great sadness that I read that the Ohio Freedom Alliance, an organization I was once very proud to be part of, has decided to back the Republican Liberty Caucus (RLC).
The Ohio Freedom Alliance wants to “reform” the Republican Party through organizations like the RLC. In principle, the RLC holds to strong Constitutional and libertarian beliefs.
The problem is, they are trying to reform the unreformable. As evidence, look at the Republican Presidential primary this year. There were at least three candidates acceptable to libertarian Republicans on the ballot: Ron Paul, Jon Huntsman, and Michelle Bachmann. Gov. Huntsman and Rep. Bachmann were eliminated in the early balloting. Ron Paul was able to hang on only because he was using his candidacy to promote a larger cause — one that enjoys generous contributions and dedicated volunteers. But who won the nomination? Mitt Romney, the most liberal candidate in the pack.
The RLC will tell you that it is foolish to go outside the two-party system that has been entrenched in U.S. politics since at least 1825. A vote for a third-party candidate will re-elect the President, they say. But is that really much worse than electing Mitt Romney? George Wallace famously said in 1972 that there wasn’t a dime’s worth of difference between the two major parties — and in this election there really isn’t — even in 2012 money. The Republicans will tweak Obamacare but leave it intact, increase the national debt, inflate the currency more slowly, and increase social restrictions on the American people in the name of national security preserving the empire. The Democrats will bankrupt both the government and the economy much faster in the name of redistributing the wealth enriching its allies. Both major parties remain committed to supporting war, any war.
We are far past the time when business-as-usual solutions will work. We need to creatively work to build a free society that does not depend on the two parties that got our country into this mess. Neither the President nor Gov. Romney are capturing the imagination of the American people. With this in mind, we have an opportunity to do something different, if people will just open their minds to new candidates and new approaches — such as the Libertarian Party‘s Gary Johnson, who as a business owner and with eight years as a state governor, has more executive experience than President Obama and Gov. Romney combined.
We need liberty organizations that are independent of political parties. We need the Tea Parties and the Ohio Freedom Alliance as they were three years ago — organizations that critically examined the situation we are in and pressed for solutions outside the ballot box. We do not need what they have become now, small protest movements within the Republican Party.
The lesser of two evils is still evil. When will we finally stand up for what is good?