The strategy of the Paul campaign, explicit or not, is the archetypal shi (pronounced “sure”) strategy expounded and employed by Chinese philosophers and military strategists for thousands of years.
Throughout history, perhaps the clearest and most pedagogical example of shi at work has been in the Chinese board game weiqi (pronounced “way-chee” ..
.. It requires a profound understanding of the Daoist concept of how current loss leads to eventual gain—or, as Laozi said, the soft overcoming the hard.
We see the shi strategy of Ron Paul in the great patience and nonaggression that favors the slow buildup of influence and strategic advantage over the decisive all-or-nothing clash.
In this society of immediate gratification and winning right now at all cost we need to ask ourselves: why should future elections and platforms matter so much less than the current ones? There are powerful cognitive biases at work—among them the temporal myopia of hyperbolic discounting, or excessively undervaluing the future, while focusing on the nearer term—which make fuzzy in our minds the importance of victories in the years ahead (a view that is promulgated by the media).
Romney wins the current decisive battle for delegates, and his fight with Obama will be critical, but a protracted campaign will continue to be waged. The ultimate war is against intrusive, burgeoning government, in the ongoing insurgencies of the battles yet to come—Ron Paul’s grand shi strategy.