Ron Paul=protest vote?

Andrew Sullivan views a vote for Ron Paul as a protest against everything the Republican Party has become. Bryan Caplan says that even if he were elected, he couldn't enact the crazier parts of his agenda.

That's fair, but if I'm going to cast a protest vote, I need to know: what elements of Ron Paul's agenda am I going to empower? The problem with expressive voting is that politicians may not actually get the message you're trying to send.

If I vote for Ron Paul, am I ratifying his views on foreign policy, only a small part of which I agree with? Or am I telling Republicans that they should tack to the right on immigration and abortion? And if, in some alternate universe, Dr. Paul got elected, it is true that he would not be able to put the country on the gold standard--but what parts of his agenda might he enact? And who would he appoint to key jobs? One doesn't like to imagine who his nominee for the position of Chairman of the Federal Reserve might be.

Presented by

Megan McArdle is a columnist at Bloomberg View and a former senior editor at The Atlantic. Her new book is The Up Side of Down.

Google Street View, Transformed Into a Tiny Planet

A 360-degree tour of our world, made entirely from Google's panoramas

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Google Street View, Transformed Into a Tiny Planet

A 360-degree tour of our world, made entirely from Google's panoramas

Video

The 86-Year-Old Farmer Who Won't Quit

A filmmaker returns to his hometown to profile the patriarch of a family farm

Video

Riding Unicycles in a Cave

"If you fall down and break your leg, there's no way out."

Video

Carrot: A Pitch-Perfect Satire of Tech

"It's not just a vegetable. It's what a vegetable should be."

Video

The Benefits of Living Alone on a Mountain

"You really have to love solitary time by yourself."

More in Business

Just In