US – Stand With Rand, But Do It Someplace Else – 22 March 2013

http://www.mercurynews.com/opinion/ci_22840188/dana-milbank-standing-republican-sen-rand-paul-nervously

Isn’t it interesting that Rand Paul seems to be providing lefties and liberals numerous examples of his presumed left-liberal street cred, so people who hate his survival-of-the-richest economic views and troglodyte positions about the Civil and Voting Rights Act find themselves saying “Well, I have to agree with him there”?

Pardon me if I’m not impressed with how easily some folks are manipulated. “Standing With Rand”, for any reason, should make you doubt the “stander”.

In particular, it should make you doubt the commitment to civil liberties of the “stander”, who apparently is willing to forgive Paul for expressing a desire to gut the voting rights of African-Americans, but nevertheless thinks that Paul has some “libertarian” ideas about keeping African-Americans out of prison, or something like that. Voting is a civil liberty. If Rand Paul’s name were Barack Obama, you would be saying “Okay, yes, he’s good on some issues, but look at that one, he’s DREADFUL.” Since Rand Paul’s name is…well, Rand Paul…you say “Okay, he’s bad on some issues, but look at that one, isn’t he DREAMY?” What a difference being a white Republican makes, I guess.

The thing that’s the least forgivable about that attitude is that it seems to be disproportionately held by those who could not for a moment tolerate anyone agreeing about something even in passing with George W. Bush. It would not be sufficient for me, for example, to say “Normally I think George W. Bush is the kind of guy who would wrap kittens up in a bag and throw them in the river, but for some reason we are on the same side of Political Issue X, though it makes me retch to think of it.” But it’s okay for this crowd to joyously “Stand With Rand” about all sorts of stuff and act like someone has committed a social faux pas for noting the incongruity of that attitude towards rapturously agreeing with right-wing Republicans.

Stand with Rand? Then stand over there. I stand with Barack.

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