Ron Paul's campaign ad calling for defeat of a debt-ceiling extension is a trite, minor-league and irresponsible tactic unworthy of any candidate for the presidency. If anyone of importance actually took Ron Paul's ad seriously and his position prevailed, he would cause a global crash and possibly a new depression.

After thinking about this a few days, it is sad and revealing that Ron Paul is abandoning Congress and his position as chairman of a major financial subcommittee. After years as a gadfly, Paul finally has an opportunity to make a major difference as chairman of a major subcommittee and he throws it away, preferring to remain a gadfly on the fringes.

I have always tried to be fair to Ron Paul, sometimes praising him, sometimes criticizing him. His new Hollywood-style ad calling for defeat of the debt ceiling reveals him as just another politician hustling for votes, and just another hack desperately trying to win the lunatic fringe of a lunatic faction of a party out of touch with economic sanity.

All of the Republican candidates for president look ridiculous when discussing the debt ceiling. It is a race to the bottom in a party dominated by extremists, with a third-rate flock of candidates playing amateur night at the farm, now including Ron Paul. His latest ad makes him look like a righty blogger or cranky talk-show host, not a worthy leader of a great nation.