Even though the majority of people committed to the Modern American Libertarian Movement don't see Rand Paul as particularly "libertarian," anti-freedom ideologues are desperately eager to use him as their straw man to vilify the entire Movement.
Writing under a headline that declares Rand Paul in 2016 would be "Great for libertarians, bad for America" Joseph Cotto quickly identifies Paul as "a libertarian icon," "a voice for rigid constitutionalism," "the son of small government godfather Ron Paul," and "the first heir to a libertarian political machine with national teeth."
It's clear, then, that Cotto is stuck in the old familiar left-right political partisanism, likely unaware that while some libertarians may be Rand Paul fans, some may be constitutionalists, some may be small government "minarchists," some may reject politics entirely, and all will be stunned at the idea that there is such a thing as a libertarian "political machine" of any description, Cotto has carefully failed to define libertarians by its essential characteristic: The Zero Aggression Principle.
But Cotto, too timid to do his own dirty work, hides behind surrogate attackers with quotes like this:
"Libertarianism is like socialism: it attracts precocious teenagers but most people grow out of it as they get experience in real politics and see that you can’t reduce it all to one thing, not even freedom."
This statement, almost certainly unwittingly, exposes the mindset of the Cottos of the world vs. libertarians; we are all supposed to discourage our children from fighting, bullying and lying – fundamental libertarian principles against coercion, intimidation and fraud – but those same children are expected to "grow out of it as they get experience in real politics" which rests precisely on coercion (fighting), intimidation (bullying) and fraud (lying).
Cotto hides behind other kindred freedom-haters with quotes like "libertarianism is an infantile disorder" and a label that "comes from the Republican Party’s pathetic big-government record" even though most libertarians are anti-Republican.
The entire article sounds like desperate wishful thinking, that if you just rant angrily against libertarians, call them names, make up a lot of wildly silly stuff and repeat decades old stereotypes it will all come true and the blind anti-freedom moles can then crawl back into their dark comfortable burrows and chew contentedly on the "free" lunches looted for them from the taxpayers by the ruling classes.
If these people wanted their kids to grow up and enter "real politics" why didn't they just teach them to attack, bully and lie in the first place? At least then they won't become confused hypocrites like their parents.