I wish that Rand's victory in the Kentucky Senate Race meant we had a Ron Paul clone there, but I really don't see it. Rand appears to be a bit of a party hack. Ron is a principled liberterian.
Ron Paul was the original focus of the tea party. He didn't start it himself, but a grass roots movement created it in support of his presidential run. As it grew corporate interest decided to get involved. In came Sarah Palin and Glenn Beck. Ron did what he could to warn those involved and he has since in various ways distanced himself from them. He asks if we should pat ourselves on the back for cutting a few thousand dollars from an inner city project while turning a blind eye to the billions sent overseas to fight aggressive and illegal wars. His hostility to them earned him tea party backed primary challengers. Rand embraced the Tea Party and rode their wave to victory.
Sure, Ron would love to see less regulation. But it seems to me he understands that the corporate takeover of government means that in the interim there is no check on corporate power without government. So take the repeal of Glass Steagal in 1999. This act is largely believed to be responsible for the financial crisis from 2008. This would be perceived as a repeal of regulations, which you might think Ron Paul would support. Ron voted against repealing it.
Here's Rand Paul bragging about how he has the support of the Chamber of Commerce and how he wants to do what it takes to help big business. He wants automatic sunsetting of various regulations. Does Ron Paul have the support of the Chamber of Commerce? He gets their lowest ranking amongst Republicans. That's a badge of honor in my world.
Take Rand on the war. His positions as described at his website don't say a single word about how our overseas wars are not only costly, but immoral. If you are really concerned about out of control deficits why are you only talking about spending that helps the poor and not the far greater amount of war spending that helps the rich? Ron talks about this constantly. Rand doesn't have a word to say about it at his website.
The so called "Ground Zero Mosque" issue is being played up by war mongers to induce additional fear so they can further their designs of world wide hegemony. Ron gets it and Rand doesn't.
Rand sounds like the kind of guy that will cut government everywhere that it might stand in the way of the rich exploiting the poor. The Chamber of Commerce crowd is really principled about small government on those issues. But when it comes to the far more costly and far more immoral aggressive wars that help corporate cronies, suddenly things get really quiet for Rand. That's why he's not Ron.