Ilya Shapiro and Francisco Gonzalez are at CNN, talking about how Senator Rand Paul (R-Egressive) is the totes awesome future of conservatism:
The junior senator from Kentucky has a vision of the Constitution in full, advocating the Second Amendment's right to keep and bear arms and the Fourth Amendment's right to be free from unreasonable search and seizure.I don't know how many times and in how many different ways I can say this, but a person who is resolutely anti-choice is not "for civil liberties." Nor does he support "a humbler role for government," as there is nothing humble about the government crawling up inside vaginas and planting flags of ownership.
He's for civil liberties -- to protect against police abuse or presidential drones, as well as economic liberties and the freedom to run a business without unnecessary regulation. And he wants to give the blessings of those liberties to those who come to America in search of a better life.
As a libertarian and a traditional conservative, we disagree with Paul on a number of issues. Yet we both see his constitutional conservatism as auguring a future in which social tolerance, fiscal temperance and a humbler role for government are pursued not as ends in themselves but because that's the best path.
The wormy anti-choice apple doesn't fall far from the rotten misogynist tree.
Relatedly, on the general subject of Rand Paul's civil libertarian warrior credentials, LeMew observes: "My argument is not that civil libertarians should be skeptical of Rand Paul because he has terrible beliefs on a wide array of other issues. My argument is that civil libertarians should be skeptical of Rand Paul because he has terrible positions on civil liberties. While he did make a couple of gestures towards a more serious questioning of the arbitrary executive, the overwhelming thrust of his lengthy filibuster (and the exclusive subject of his proposed legislation) is on DRONES! rather than extrajuridical killings, and on American citizens on American soil rather than people."
And even Paul's opposition to DRONES! is limited: As Howard_Bannister noted in comments: "Rand Paul is totally okay with using drones to kill 'icky' people, just not Americans on American soil!"
Paul is definitely interested in protecting and conferring rights upon people like himself. But there's no such thing as trickle-down civil liberties. He wants protections and rights at the expense of, or with indifference to, others'.
That's not a champion of civil liberties. That's just being a self-interested fuckhead and cloaking it in a flag.