Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX), the definite star of CPAC this year, just got done speaking. He offered up his standard fare: opposition to the PATRIOT Act, opposition to foreign aid and a clear distaste for the Fed. He also proposed a deal to America's youth: how about we let you opt-out of all government services, forever?
A lot of Republicans running for president (or "maybe running for president") these days are trying to reach out to the Libertarian wing of the party, whose fiscal views have come to dominate the tea party movement. But Paul made it clear how far the Mitt Romneys and Tim Pawlentys of the world will have to go before they really talk like a libertarian. Where they're talking about small government and shrunken entitlements, Paul's suggesting young people be allowed to walk away from the government entirely. His proposed deal works like this: you pay the government 10% of your income (presumably to protect your borders and such) and you promise you'll never take advantage of a government service for the rest of your life.
"Look, we are not doing such a good job being government these days," Paul explained. "We make promises and we don't know about the future."
"Would you consider opting out of the whole system under one condition?" Paul then asked, introducing his plan. "You pay 10% of your income, but you take care of yourself. Don't asked the government for anything."
Not surprisingly, the crowd of libertarian youth packing the CPAC hall for his speech went wild.