Ron Paul's appeal and his early primary success seems to baffle both mainstream pundits and the party-devoted alike. Trying to figure it out, Robert Stacy McCain asks:

How is it, for example, that a 76-year-old with a reedy voice — his appearance and manner not remotely "presidential" by the usual standards of the TV age — is an idol to so many youth?


And no longer able to ignore Ron Paul and his supporters, cheap attacks have substituted for self-reflection.

Many of my conservative friends are so busy denouncing Ron Paul and his supporters that they can't be bothered to ask themselves, "Why don't we have that kind of wild-eyed fanaticism among our supporters?"

But is it really so hard to understand the "wild-eyed fanaticism among" Ron Paul's supporters? Or is it more likely that conventional, self-styled "conservatives" are simply afraid of the answer?

Ron Paul 2012

Ron Paul Defies the Standard Partisan Fare

Ron Paul defies the Democrat/Republican stereotypes we've been stuck with all our lives. The very stereotypes, I might add, who are responsible for all of our nation's woes. Of all the candidates, only Ron Paul stands out as an example of an entirely different approach - liberty.

Think about it. Why on earth would anybody want more of the same?

Ben Bernanke and the rest of "the smartest guys in the room" were shocked, shocked! by the housing bubble and banking collapse of 2008. Ron Paul, on the other hand, warned the American people and even tried to pass legislation to stop it as early as 2002.

Is it really any wonder then, why so many Americans (especially young Americans) want to "forget the quacks who told us, cluelessly, that everything was fine with the economy in 2007," and roll with Ron Paul instead?

After the Democrats got their shovel-ready $787 billion stimulus package in 2009, what did they do? They stuffed the pockets of the same wealthy, corporatist schmucks as did Bush and the Republicans with TARP. So again, is it really so hard to understand why so many Americans support Ron Paul?

The fact that Ron Paul is the only candidate on either side of the aisle advocating a non-interventionist foreign policy also distinguishes Ron Paul from the status quo pack while bolstering his popularity. After all, the status quo didn't fair too well. The Iraq War was a catastrophe, 57 per cent of Americans no longer believe in the Afghanistan war, and it's common knowledge we were lied into Iraq to begin with ... and we didn't even get a lousy t-shirt.

Instead (and in the name of "freedom" to boot), we got the PATRIOT Act, the Orwellian DHS, molested at the airport, and our own backyard declared a "battlefield" for the purposes of detaining you, me and our neighbors indefinitely and without trial.

As the Obama administration continues Bush's neocon foreign policy ... Is it any wonder, seriously, why Americans "whose loyalty is to our traditions of freedom, and not to a governing bureaucracy" see in Paul "an idea whose time has come"?

Neil Cavuto says "Rock Star" Ron Paul is Obama's Toughest Competition

For years, longer than I've been alive, both Republicans and Democrats have been united in their support for these (and more) absolutely insane policies. Whether it's a "War on Poverty," a "War on Drugs," or a "War on Terrorism," the American people - both left and right - keep losing their liberties, paychecks, and all too often their lives.

And some folks are actually surprised that voters are turning their backs on this tired, old status quo?

Ron Paul is the only politician (or mainstream pundit for that matter) who talks about the greatest of American traditions - liberty - reminding many of us, especially the young, that a busy-bodied bureaucracy isn't the only (nor even the best) style of governance.

Ron Paul Can Win!

Zogby: Paul Is the 'Fly in the Ointment' for Romney

"There is one fly in the ointment, and that's Ron Paul," said [John Zogby], the CEO of IBOPE Zogby. "Ron Paul draws his support from cities and college campuses and young people — not only 18- to 29-year-olds, but those under-40 as well.

"So if there is a high turnout in South Carolina, Ron Paul could actually hurt Mitt Romney."

"First of all, [Romney]'s got to unite the party, and the GOP is seriously fractured ... there’s got to be some significant healing."

But a new IBOPE Zogby poll that shows only 1 in 4 Americans believes the country is headed in the right direction under President Barack Obama does hold hope for Romney.

"That's not a good number," Zogby said. "The right direction-wrong track question is a very important voting barometer, and generally, you should have a majority who feel that the country is headed in the right direction."

Hey, America, Half Of Young Voters Just Voted For Ron Paul — Half!

Think Ron Paul is just a fringe wacko supported by online chat-board trolls in tin-foil hats?

Nope.

In New Hampshire, Ron Paul got an astounding 47% of votes from voters under 30. In Iowa, he grabbed a similarly high percentage.

These young voters are gravitating to Paul because:

  1. He is so obviously different from most politicians.
  2. He acknowledges the huge financial problems this country faces and has the balls to actually offer a concrete plan for dealing with them (it would temporarily destroy the economy, but at least it acknowledges the problem).
  3. He is willing to take positions far from the mainstream and therefore is clearly not a prisoner of the same "I'll-say-anything-to-get-elected" ethos so prevalent in our dysfunctional government.

In short, what Ron Paul represents to young voters is change.

Change, of course, is the same thing that a lot of young voters thought they would be getting in President Obama. But instead, young voters feel they have gotten more of the same. (More of the Wall Street bailouts, more of the spending, more of the government dysfunction, more debt, etc.)

You don't have to be a genius to see that, if our government continues on its present course — borrowing and spending way more than it takes in — the country is going to be screwed.

Ron Paul acknowledges that. And Ron Paul's ideas, though radical in some cases, promise major change.

Younger voters, meanwhile, don't like the fact that the country they will soon inherit is charging headlong toward a cliff. They also don't like the super-high unemployment rate, record-high student-loan debt, and the fact that the American dream that their parents enjoyed seems to be evaporating.

In other words, what Ron Paul is now tapping into is a developing war between generations, one that will only get more intense in the coming decades.

Half of voters under 30 just just voted for Ron Paul. Half.

The Washington establishment (and America) dismisses that at their peril.

U.S. households are getting more from Uncle Sam than they pay in, nearly half of all households are on the government dole, the cost of the wars are at least $3.7 trillion and climbing, oh, and the U.S. federal government is bankrupt. The country is going off a bipartisan cliff!

So again I ask, "What's So Hard to Understand About Ron Paul?"

GOP Strategist: Ron Paul Is the Only Electable Alternative to Mitt Romney

The Only Tea Party Candidate!

Six days before South Carolina's presidential primary, Ron Paul scored one of the most sought-after political blessings in the state.

On Sunday, state Sen. Tom Davis endorsed the Texas congressman in Myrtle Beach. Davis is a rising star in Republican circles and a highly regarded fiscal conservative who holds sway over many tea party activists.

"[T]here's only one person, there's only one person speaking to what I believe is the core problem of our country today. The biggest threat to our liberty comes from debt."

"There is only one candidate that is talking about this problem to the degree, at the scale and with the scope that it needs to be talked about. You can't nibble around the edges anymore."

Ron Paul 2012

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H/T - Title of post thanks to Odis Ellis via Rock Star Ron!