Paul appeals to a lot of young conservatives for his supposed clear-speaking on complex issues. But he speaks clearly because his positions are naïve and other-worldly. It’s easy — and correct — to suggest that the federal debt is an enormous problem, even to say that it’s a national security problem, as Paul has said. But is it really, as he has also said, the biggest national security problem America has? Hardly…

This is a fundamental blindness that libertarians share: They see no difference in Iran having nuclear weapons and our having them, Israel having them, or France having them. That is a judgment of moral equivalence espoused only by libertarians and isolationist liberals. To Paul, every nation — regardless of its ideology, its support for terrorism, or its threats against American allies — has equal rights to nuclear weapons. And Paul conveniently forgets that Iran has threatened often to wipe Israel off the map…

Mark my words: Republicans will never nominate Rand Paul to be their standard bearer. Nevertheless, a Paul candidacy — like the last one — will have negative effects. The media will try to damage the whole field of candidates by associating them with Paul’s civil rights comments. And Paul will serve as the media’s foil on foreign policy. Reagan mastered “strategic ambiguity” because he knew that it meant keeping the adversary off-balance. To Rand Paul, strategic ambiguity means confusing our allies and our military, keeping them off-balance while trying to understand when he means to be are serious and when he does not. He’s just a chip off the old blockhead.