In all honesty, I find the mess they’ve got in Kentucky completely hilarious. In a startling case of laxity, the media did not crucify Mr. Paul for his ultra-libertarian views. He, for example, believes that the government has no right to tell a business that it must serve people of all races. His belief is that business will naturally do so for economic reasons, but the government has no right to force them. Not surprisingly, there are a lot of people taking a very large exception to this kind of thinking. Mr. Paul, predictably, is blaming the "liberal media" and "democratic talking heads" for the sudden, unflattering attention.
Frankly, I think so-called Libertarians are really anything but. Mr. Paul, for example, wants to make it illegal for a woman to have an abortion, including in cases of rape, incest, or mortal danger. How is this consistent with the government-stay-out-of-my-business philosophy of the libertarian position? Furthermore, he stands opposed to legal same-gender marriage. He talks a good game by saying he’s only opposed to it insofar as the government requires it be recognized. So as long as there are no laws protecting gay marriage, so long as there are no laws requiring the recognition of gay marriage as equal in civil and legal standing to heterosexual marriage, then Rand Paul is completely okay with it. (riiiiight.)
Basically, the Tea Party darling is showing himself to be no different from any other conservative republican – he believes the government should legislate people’s differentness. Force everyone to conform to a conservative moralistic ideal, and marginalize those who cannot become white, male, Protestant, upper-middle class, gainfully employed, not disabled, not elderly, etc. For the fortunate people who can conform, they want the government to let them do whatever they want, whenever they want, to whomever they want. Otherwise, you’re out of luck. Rand Paul is possibly even worse on this score than the standard-issue social conservative, and he’s made no apologies for it up to this point. Now that he’s squarely in the national crosshairs, however, he’s busy blaming everybody for picking on him and for being great big meanies. Welcome to the big leagues, Rand Paul. Hope you enjoy your stay, however (mercifully) brief it will be.