Does it Take a Republican?

I have been to a handful of local Libertarian meetings in the past (all of which were in georgia not texas), and I have to admit they are usually somewhat lame. Though the UGA libertarians were slightly better it was still generally just a bunch guys getting together to complain and make fairly small plans (i.e. who is going to man the next OPH booth...) The local libertarians were usually a mix of quacks, artists, and pot smokers with quite a bit of overlap between the three categories.

As such the discourse in the meetings tended to be conspiracy-theory-esque with the occasional damn-the-man bitching.

I just got home from the first (presumably ever) Austin Liberty ball. It was a rally/concert for Ron Paul. ::note: you can call me a paultard if you want. It was still really awesome!::

From austinlibertyball.com:

One of the Largest Ron Paul MeetUp Groups + "Live
Music Capital of the World" = Austin Liberty Ball. New to Ron Paul?
Seasoned supporter? Come out for an evening unlike any other. We will
be showcasing the top videos of the grassroots movement, guest speakers
and some of the best music Austin has to offer -- all in the name of
liberty & Ron Paul.

Need to register to vote? Want to learn how to be a delegate?
Want to be a precinct captain? Looking to score a yard sign? Want to
hear great live music in a like minded environment?

...come out and join the Revolution.

It even included some libertarian-themed music. It took place in a large coffee shop in south austin. There was a $5 cover and the place was packed... standing room only for the speakers (it cleared out a little when the bands started playing).

I only arrived in time to hear the last speaker who happened to be an organizer of ronpaulbillboards.com talking about some of the successes his website had had, and the plans to put up a billboard in austin.

This highlighted the great and very likely unintentional genius of Ron Paul's campaign: decentralized power. Allowing supporters anywhere to buy and spread their own advertising (the austin meetup is funding locally run tv ads as we speak), come up with their own fundraising plans, hold their own rallies and marches, and even hold concerts in his honor has not only made it possible for Ron Paul to continue his campaign far longer than anyone expected to, but has also ignited a very active, passionate, and creative nationwide libertarian-oriented movement.

And while this decentralization may appear to be the obvious fuel of this movement I have difficulty imagining a Libertarian Party candidate having such success even with a similarly structured campaign.

Which makes me wonder does it take a Republican to light a fire under libertaria, or is Ron Paul just that cool... (given his speaking style and propensity for dicussions on monentary policy the latter option would be very ironic).

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