Ron Paul brings to government culture today a vision as complete and comprehensive as that which Martin Luther brought to religious culture. He is close to Luther in this regard as well: Ron Paul, like Martin Luther, dispels the worship of idols. Europe could not conceive of life without Roman dominance in the 1500s even as it descended into massive corruption. Until Luther, when half of the European establishment flipped. Paul and his libertarian cadre disdainfully view the political establishment of Washington, D.C., and it may be about to flip.

Even Wesley Clark, who should have been the Democratic nominee for president in 2004, has had good words, according to published reports. “Ron Paul — he has his own idea on foreign policy, you should listen to it. Maybe there’s something in there that’s worth studying,” he is said to have commented after the foreign-policy debate.

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I wrote passionately about both Clark and Paul in 2004 and saw no conflict and much common ground. But the culture was not ready for Clark or Paul and yielded to the immature, irresponsible, escapist siren call of “rock stars” and favorite sons and daughters. The corrupt Bush/Cheney establishment depended on this institutional denial, particularly in the Democratic Senate. It was a form of appeasement.

Paul, like Luther, brings an organic, heroic response “by the people” to corruption that has carried over generations. Rule of thumb: If the sprawling, brooding, dominating temple and soaring edifice representing the emperor, pope or former president is taller and larger than the individual it is intended to represent, the idolatry surrounding the august personage is directly proportionate to the overblown size of the idol. This idolatry has made us a democracy rather than a republic or confederation of republics as Jefferson intended. Today it is unlikely that students are taught the difference.

It has lessened us as individuals. We idolize the big screen as well and democracy instead of republican government has made us a horde, our totem animal the penguin, helpless in the face of skilled predators. Aldous Huxley wrote of this early on and it is reflected in his book Brave New World; we would become government’s customers instead of citizens, narcotized by the “feelies” and scurrying on cue to “Cyber Monday.”

Ron Paul worships none of our idols. Those who have seen the masterful Showtime presentation “The Tudors” will recall the danger of new ideas repeated today with Paul and son Rand as their fearless tellers, offering a new way to live; a better way, a truer way — the way proposed by Jefferson. It will suddenly cross culture like a firestorm from one place to another, as Luther's vision did in the court of Henry VIII.

Outlook: If Newt takes the Republican nomination, Paul should run as a third-party candidate with Dennis Kucinich as VP. Obama may drop Biden. Rumor has started at The Wall Street Journal that he will replace Biden with Hillary. That suggestion from two Democratic commentators from Fox Business with right sympathies. Obama should replace Biden but with either Jim Webb (fire) or Wes Clark (maturity and strength) to rebuild the party from scratch with new people for a new generation. It is the only way to clear out the moral ambiguity of Democratic senators who unconscionably supported the illegality and immorality of Bush/Cheney in Iraq, namely Hillary and Biden. Will need Dave “Mudcat” Saunders and Steve Jarding, however, to take the heartland, as he must. Southerner soldiers Wes Clark and Jim Webb would help.