Podcast

Ron Paul: Rejecting Authoritarian Government Is Our Greatest Priority

Self-reliance is the key to our future
Sunday, June 9, 2013, 12:00 PM

Dr. Ron Paul has long been a leading voice for limited constitutional government, low taxes, free markets, sound money, civil liberty, and non-interventionist foreign policies.

His last term in the U.S. House of Representatives ended earlier this year, so we caught up with the former Congressman to get his latest perspective on how successfully our national leadership is dealing with America’s economic challenges.

In Dr. Paul’s assessment, Washington is too committed to deficit spending and the debt-based economy – both operationally and philosophically – to expect it to embrace a more fiscally-responsible model without a forcing crisis (which he believes is coming):

[T]hey believe it like a religion that spending is good no matter what the spending is on. And that the deficits don't matter; deficits are not a burden. And even though we have this national debt and we have a foreign debt, they don't consider that so bad, as long as people will spend money. And if the people won't spend any money, the government has this moral obligation to do it.

I don't expect anything else because they are reflecting what I consider “prevailing attitudes.” And the prevailing attitudes for the last 50 or 60 years, especially since the 1930s, has been spending and deficits and printing money is the way to go.

But where I am encouraged is outside of Washington. You get a better perspective from people like you who talk about this and get people to look at their investments. I think this is beneficial, because a lot of people are realizing this whole system is deeply flawed, and they are looking elsewhere. And that is why I talk a lot about free markets, and property rights, and Austrian economics, and getting rid of the Fed. All these things are now up for grabs. A lot of people, especially the young people, are looking at this. So, for this reason, I am a bit encouraged by what might come out of this.

But I think we are going to go through the wringer. I think it's going to get much, much worse. It is bad enough already, but there is no way that we can step back.

The one thing I am convinced of, after having spent so much time in Washington, is that this will not be a gradual recovery from this disaster that we have. We are not going to elect enough people and have enough courage to vote the right way; there is too much demagoguing and too much misunderstanding. The people would revolt, but the collapse will come. It is going to hit the dollar, and then we are going to have our opportunity.  

So, the more people who are protected intellectually as well as financially, the better off we will be in rebuilding what we will need to do in the near future.

Dr Paul continues to be vocal about the destructive role the Federal Reserve’s loose and interventionist monetary policies are having in enabling the mal-investment in the system:

What if the Fed could not buy government debt? What a different world it would be. Everybody said this would be a disastrous to the economy but what if people accommodated with this?

What if there was a dependency on saving? What if we did have a market rate of interest? And what if that resulted in less bubbles? All of a sudden the world would be a different place.

But no...The only thing they can even do is spend more and more money. That is the only tool they have.

So, for that reason, I am not shocked at the numbers. I guess I am more surprised that the whole thing holds together so long. Because when you look at this, and you look at the foreign debt, and the national debt it is so outrageous, and there is still confidence in the dollar, the world they do not have a good currency, so the best they can come up with is the dollar, but even the dollar is less popular than it used to be. It is being held a lot less now as reserve currency, but we can still buy oil, and we can still buy our stuff from China, and they take our currency.

But what amazes me is that it holds together. So I think monetizing debt and spending and deficit is going to get much, much worse until the world rejects the dollar. And there will be a rejection here at home, and prices will soar, and eventually interest rates will break loose and they will start rising.

He continues to view precious metals as prudent to hold in advance of this currency crisis. But in the long run, he sees civil agitation for smaller government as our best strategy:

I don't think the euro is going to replace the dollar. And that certainly looks like it is the case. You are not going to go to yen, and you are not going to go to special drawing rights…

No, when people become frightened, they look for things of real value, and I don't think they can repeal the laws of economics that says that for 6,000 years metals have been beneficial. They will go to monetary metals, gold and silver, and they will buy other things, such as buying property. But no matter what we have, whether we have our gold coins or we have our property, if we have an authoritarian government, that is our greatest threat.

So, I would like to think that there is no perfect protection, other than shrinking the size and scope and power of government, so that we can be left alone and take care of ourselves.

(Note: this interview was recorded before the NSA/PRISM developments were reported.)

Click the play button below to listen to Chris' interview with Dr. Ron Paul (19m:37s):

Transcript: 

Chris Martenson: We have reached an important milestone with these Peak Prosperity podcasts. Today's marks our one-hundredth interview, and I can't think of a better person to mark this achievement than today's guest. It is my great honor to welcome Dr. Ron Paul as my guest. Until the beginning of this year, Dr. Paul served as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, beginning his first term of office in 1976. He ran for the office of U.S. President three times, most recently in the 2012 Republican primaries. Dr. Paul also had a long career as an OB/GYN, over which he delivered over 4,000 babies. Ron Paul is a leading voice for limited constitutional government, low taxes, free markets, sound money, civil liberty, and non-interventionist foreign policies. I have long wanted to discuss our national situation with him, and I am delighted and honored that he agreed to be our guest today. Dr. Paul, thank you so much for joining us.

Ron Paul: Good to be with you, Chris.

Chris Martenson: Let's begin with the state of the economy. From my perspective, we have an imprudent and unsustainable monetary policy, which is creating all sorts of malinvestments and dangerous asset bubbles everywhere. Add to that a broken fiscal policy that has made America far too dependent on borrowed money, present company excluded. D.C. seems incapable of understanding the scope of the issues, let alone enacting steps to address them. Wall Street pursues moral hazard with impunity. What am I missing here? Do you see things differently?

Ron Paul: I see them differently in some ways. I think the analysis is correct, but I see Washington as being different, in a sense that I don't expect anything else because they are reflecting what I consider “prevailing attitudes.” And the prevailing attitudes for the last 50 or 60 years, especially since the 1930s, has been spending and deficits and printing money is the way to go. These people actually believe that World War II ended the Depression. They have no idea that the Federal Reserve had something to do with the inflation of the 1920s and the Depression of the 1930s, and the wars that are being fought, so they operate with deep conviction.

You take a guy like Paul Krugman, or even Bernanke, and they believe it like a religion that spending is good no matter what the spending is on. And that the deficits don't matter; deficits are not a burden. And even though we have this national debt and we have a foreign debt, they don't consider that so bad, as long as people will spend money. And if the people won't spend any money, the government has this moral obligation to do it.

And we see it; you and I and others see what the results are. It's miserable. People are getting poorer. Since the recession/depression hit in 2007, the middle class has shrunk. They're probably 50% down on their income. Yet the wealthy are getting wealthier. So, it is a mess. It reflects a bad attitude about economics. It has been ingrained in our system, and that is what Washington is all about.

But where I am encouraged is outside of Washington. You get a better perspective from people like you who talk about this and get people to look at their investments. I think this is beneficial, because a lot of people are realizing this whole system is deeply flawed, and they are looking elsewhere. And that is why I talk a lot about free markets, and property rights, and Austrian economics, and getting rid of the Fed. All these things are now up for grabs. A lot of people, especially the young people, are looking at this. So, for this reason, I am a bit encouraged by what might come out of this. But I think we are going to go through the ringer. I think it going to get much, much worse. It is bad enough already, but there is no way that we can step back.

The one thing I am convinced of, after having spent so much time in Washington, is that this will not be a gradual recovery from this disaster that we have. We are not going to elect enough people and have enough courage to vote the right way; there is too much demagoguing and too much misunderstanding. The people would revolt, but the collapse will come. It is going to hit the dollar, and then we are going to have our opportunity. So, the more people who are protected intellectually as well as financially, the better off we will be in rebuilding what we will need to do in the near future.

Chris Martenson: That's exactly the work that we are engaging in out here, as one of many organizations, as you mentioned, who have seen the light, who understand the real risks. I have noted a very pronounced, what I will call a “generational gap,” and I sympathize with both sides. Boomers desperately want to preserve the status quo because they have paid into it, they have invested in it, they have saved into that system. They have everything to gain by preserving the status quo. But young people look at the same situation and say they have nothing to gain from preserving the status quo. That is, they get saddled with huge debts, a crumbling infrastructure, and no loyalty with companies and the government anymore, it seems. How do we close that gap up?

Ron Paul: Well, reality will set in, and I think that is what is happening. The young people that are leaving college right now, they have a degree that is not earning them a good job. Some of them are going to work at McDonald's. And then they have this huge debt. So, it is a failed system. And they wonder what is wrong. Maybe government needs to give them more money. We need to bail them out. I heard Krugman say the other day, what we need to do is put more people on food stamps because it is a net benefit to put more people on food stamps not be more productive and not save money and not invest and not have free markets and sound money. No, put more people on food stamps, they will spend the money, increase demand, and the world will be perfect again.

So I think the young people are waking up, but just think about five, six years ago, how many people even talked about the Federal Reserve? I mean, even though it is nothing to really brag about, we ended up getting Audit the Fed bill passed twice in the House of Representatives. Just getting it to the floor is pretty amazing. I had worked on that for 30 years, and there has always been somebody around complaining about the Fed and why we should know more about the Fed. Yet, now it has shifted. I can go to the college campuses and get a good reception when I go hard on both the income tax and the Federal Reserve, so attitudes are changing. I think young people are realizing that they are getting a bad rap, and I think we have to turn that into a positive.

Chris Martenson: I totally agree. I want to turn back to Bernanke for a second, because you have exchanged words with the man a few times. I've seen many of those exchanges. So, what I am interested in is, you mentioned before that people in D.C. and people who are supportive of the whole D.C. culture really believe in the narrative that they have told themselves that deficits do not matter, things like that. You have exchanged blunt words with Chairman Bernanke and the Federal Reserve monetary policies. Do you really think that he and the Federal Reserve Board are really aware of the risks that you have raised, or do they actually believe what they are saying?

Ron Paul: I think they believe it less strongly than they used to believe. But they are protecting themselves because they will never admit, “I screwed up.” “I worked in college for 30 years.” “I did my dissertation.” “This is my religious belief.” And I put that in quotes. “This is what I deeply believe.” So, what are they going to say when the whole thing comes down on their head? It was not their fault. It was right now they are starting to say, well, it is a fiscal problem now. The Congress just won't spend enough money. Oh, they raise taxes, and taxes are too high. So, they will dismiss the blame away from them and not think it is monetary policy. But it is really both. You cannot have deficits without the Fed and I have accused Bernanke as well as Greenspan, as they were the facilitators; they are the ones who run up the debt.

What if the Fed could not buy government debt? What a different world it would be. Everybody said this would be a disastrous to the economy, but what if people accommodated this? What if there was a dependency on saving? What if we did have a market rate of interest? And what if that resulted in less bubbles? All of a sudden, the world would be a different place. But no; they believe it, but they are protecting themselves now by willing us to blame somebody else. That won't ever be the Federal Reserve; it is going to be some politician that did not vote to spend enough money and run up the deficit faster.

Chris Martenson: Dr. Paul, if I had taken you ten years ago and fast-forwarded you to today and showed you that the Federal Reserve was monetizing about half of all the federal debt, would you believe me?

Ron Paul: I probably would have been skeptical, but in many ways, some of the predictions early on that I read about even in the 1969s and the 1970s I remember looking at this, and they say when you have a system like this, every time there is a slump which you can predict will come it will always require more spending, and more deficits, and more inflation to come out of that recession until the whole thing falls apart. And this has been so true. So, yes, it looks huge, but right now, they claim we have an end of recession. Most of us do not really believe that, but then say this so-called recovery ends and we really take another big dip. The only thing they can even do is spend more and more money.

That is the only tool they have. So, for that reason, I am not shocked at the numbers. I guess I am more surprised that the whole thing holds together so long. Because when you look at this, and you look at the foreign debt, and the national debt it is so outrageous, and there is still confidence in the dollar, the world they do not have a good currency, so the best they can come up with is the dollar, but even the dollar is less popular than it used to be. It is being held a lot less now as reserve currency, but we can still buy oil, and we can still buy our stuff from China, and they take our currency. But what amazes me is that it holds together. So I think monetizing debt and spending and deficit is going to get much, much worse until the world rejects the dollar. And there will be a rejection here at home, and prices will soar, and eventually interest rates will break loose and they will start rising.

Chris Martenson: With that final date with destiny and the world turns away from the dollar, what is it that they turn towards?

Ron Paul: Well, they’ve pressed me a few times on TV over the years about that, and I say, well, one thing is, I don't think the euro is going to replace the dollar. And that certainly looks like it is the case. You are not going to go to yen, and you are not going to go to special drawing rights, the IMF cannot come up with a paper currency. No, when people become frightened, they look for things of real value, and I don't think they can repeal the laws of economics that says that for 6,000 years metals have been beneficial. They will go to monetary metals, gold and silver, and they will buy other things, such as buying property. But no matter what we have, whether we have our gold coins or we have our property, if we have an authoritarian government, that is our greatest threat.

So, I would like to think that there is no perfect protection, other than shrinking the size and scope and power of government, so that we can be left alone and take care of ourselves. But I do not think there is another paper currency that they are going to go to, unless we are pleasantly surprised and a Far Eastern country or group of countries might back their currency with gold. And who knows; that would be very good, because certainly the Western civilization and the Western countries are on the down slope, where in the Far East they are still doing well. Can you imagine what would happen if China and a few other countries go together and say we are going to buy up the gold and we are going to defend our currency? That could change the world rather quickly.

Chris Martenson: Well, they might be smart like a fox over there, because certainly China's gold purchases have just been extraordinary over the past several quarters and ever since they opened up gold ownership to their private citizens. So, one of the things I am tracking is a very pronounced, from West to East, flow of gold; East including India. So, it looks like the real wealth of the world is already tilted and rolling from one of the side of the table to the other.

Ron Paul: Yes. It has been going on do you remember I am sure you recall when the British sold their gold…

Chris Martenson: Oh, yeah.

Ron Paul: …a bunch of gold, at $300 an ounce, and I remember Bernanke no, it was Greenspan I asked him about it when it was happening it was in the news. I said, the British are selling their gold right now, and they are getting three hundred dollars. I said, that does not sound very smart, does it? He said he was sort of indignant they know what they are doing. They were smart enough to know what they were doing, but now we look back, and they were selling at three hundred, and I think it is a little bit higher right now.

Chris Martenson: I want to turn quickly now to something where you mentioned which is very serious to me this idea that one of the larger threats we can have is the idea that the government is going to do everything for us and the government has subsumed for itself into being our ultimate saviour and protector of all things, even promising to make us safe in all moments. The problem is, we have to trade away our civil liberties for our "security" there and I have got air quotes up when I am saying that.

I know this is a big concern to you. I know you know the players in the Capitol who are making the decisions. I was very interested to see what happened in Boston.  What should we take from that event, but also the larger trend of our civil liberties and our privacies just being cut? Every week, it seems like I read about some new encroachment.

Ron Paul: Well, we have choice. We can look at it and we can say, this was atrocious; it was martial law; it was overkill; it is a totally un-American to do what they did, and we can put our foot down and say, no more of this; the Feds should stay out and the state should do a better job. Or the other way that we might look at it and I am afraid it could happen is, oh, okay, it was necessary; we do need to be safe and accept this. And I think it is up for grabs. I remember so many times after 9/11, fighting for civil liberties was very, very difficult. And I have individuals in the street, some constituents, come up and say, I know we have to give up some of our freedoms to be safe. And they do not have the right understanding that governments are not there to make us safe. It sounds like a wonderful thing, but you cannot have a policeman in our house every day. To make us safe, they cannot physically do it, and if they try to do it, it is a sacrifice of liberty.

So, if we accept the role of government, not to protect our liberties but to make us safe physically, that means we have to give up the privacy of our homes and we have to endorse pre-emptive war. And also, if you want to be safe and secure materially, you have to have a welfare state, which bankrupts the country. So, those are the attitudes that have to be changed. And what we have to do is, we have to develop a whole new generation. I do get encouraged by a lot of young people who realize that government has failed. This is the wonderful news! The IRS is failing, the government is failing, the wars are failing. So we have to have something else, and that is why we have to work so hard to present the case for self-reliance, not only because we are freer, but we are richer, too.

I always said I would opt for a free society if I could just do what I want, and nobody would mess around with me, and I had my freedom. I said, even if I had lot less money, that is what I want. But you never have to make that choice. If you demand your freedom, accept your freedom. And if you assume responsibility, believe it or not, we are all going to be better off for it. The country will be richer, and it will be safer, and it is going to be more peaceful. But we have to be convinced, and the majority have to be convinced to go along with those who will lead us in that direction and say, liberty is worth everything it is made up to be, and we can all be better off with it.

Chris Martenson: This is the heart of the topic for me, here, because a lot of the people I talk to are hungry for liberty. They are ready, willing, and able to assume a responsibility for their personal outcome. We have a large percentage of non-affiliated and independent voters who listen to this podcast. They are all hungry to have better agency in influencing our elected leaders to focus on these issues of economic stewardship, sound money, civil liberty, freedom. What advice do you have to offer them? How can they make a difference? Is it all inside the political sphere, or is it time to go grassroots on this whole thing?

Ron Paul: Well, if you start and think, the politics are the answers, then it won't work. The people in politics are the reflection of attitudes. So, it is getting people's attitudes to change, and when those attitudes have changed, the government will be changed. But, too often, the people accept these things without realizing how dangerous it is that government is going to take care of us and how they cannot possibly do it. And we had a taste of this in our early history. There was a lot of self-reliance, and the really sad part right now is there is a pretty good work ethic in this country, but often times there are individuals who are begging and pleading for a better life. They come into our country and they get blamed for all the problems that we have and they end up working hard and others, because of the welfare state, are too content to accept the welfare and not accept the responsibility of taking care of one's self.

Chris Martenson: Well, excellent. So, a final question here: I know your last term as a U.S. House of Representative ended this year. In April, you founded the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity love the title. You also publish a regular newsletter called, Ron Paul's Freedom Report. What are the ways in which those who are interested in following your work and your new post-Congressional career can do so?

Ron Paul: Right now, the easiest way, if they want to use the telephone, is 1-800-RON-PAUL, and you can find out a whole lot. The other thing is, there are several web pages, but the one that is the most active right now is Campaign for Liberty. Campaign for Liberty is a group that I have in Alexandria. It is a grassroots effort. Through those two efforts, you can find out where all the other web sites are.

Chris Martenson: Well, fantastic. I think I will have an opportunity to meet you in Phoenix. I am presenting at the Casey Research Conference there this year, as well. So, hopefully I can run into you there. I want to thank you so much for your time, and most importantly, for all the work you are currently doing and all the work you have done in service for freedom. Thank you.

Ron Paul: Thank you, Chris.

About the guest

Ron Paul

Dr. Paul served as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, beginning his first term of office in 1976. He ran for the office of U.S. President three times, most recently in the 2012 Republican primaries. Dr. Paul also had a long career as an OB/GYN, over which he delivered over 4,000 babies. Ron Paul is a leading voice for limited constitutional government, low taxes, free markets, sound money, civil liberty, and non-interventionist foreign policies.

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43 Comments

MarkM's picture
MarkM
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
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Posts: 755
Sweet!

"But no matter what we have, whether we have our gold coins or we have our property, if we have an authoritarian government, that is our greatest threat."  I think it would behoove each of us to read that several times.

In 2007 I stumbled onto a man named Dr. Ron Paul and my voyage of discovery began. I am a little embarrassed that it was later in my life than it should have been. His thoughts opened my mind and when I came across "chrismartenson.com" I was ready for that message.

My life is dramatically different now and I have made major changes in it thanks to these two men.

Thanks Dr. M for the great interview.

Poet's picture
Poet
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Posts: 1844
Great To Hear Dr. Ron Paul!

What a welcome surprise to see an interview with Dr. Ron Paul here on Peak Prosperity!

I've followed him over the last several years: donated money to his campaign, even voted for him in 2008 (primary) and in 2012 (write-in).

I don't agree with everything Dr. Paul supports or says. But I do support his goals of liberty and small government, living within our means, saving, and an end to the Federal Reserve. And, he is one of the few - like Bernie Sanders - who stick to their guns. He didn't sell out.

Ultimately, seeing Ron Paul in the 2008 and 2012 elections, seeing him questioning Ben Bernanke... that is important for our country.

Because he's right. There is going to be a collapse of our currency. Things are going to get worse. And no one will be able to say stupid platitudes like "We didn't know!" or "We had no idea that this would happen!" or "No one warned us!" Dr. Ron Paul, more than anyone else in the national consciousness, has done for us what Paul Revere did for the Minutemen. This nation has no excuses left.

Poet

LesPhelps's picture
LesPhelps
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Posts: 274
Point on "Entitlements"

The podcast mentions that young people are getting a worse deal than baby boomers.  Entitlements are frequently mentioned as a boon to baby boomers and drain on resources of the young.

I'd like to present a counter point.

There are baby boomers, like me, who have contributed very large sums of money into Social Security for decades.  The last time I checked, my contributions and those of my employer on my behalf, totalled North of $250,000.  

For me, Social Security is not an "entitlement" that I am counting on, but for some reason don't deserve.  It is in fact a ponzy scheme that has been knowingly forced on me by the federal government over my entire adult life.  We have known for well over a decade that we would not receive Social Security benefits over our entire retirement and yet the money continued to be deducted from our paychecks.

I could live with not getting any social security payments during retirement if I could just count on reasonable earnings on the savings I have painfully accumulated over decades.  An interest rate 1% over inflation would allow me to live frugally, but comfortably.  Now, thanks to the fed, I cannot even count on reaonable interest on savings.

I can still put in a solid days work.  However, I have reached an age where I can envision a day when I will no longer be able to do that.  We will face the coming crisis without the energy of the younger generation and with our life savings devalued to be inadequate to meet our needs.

I feel for the younger generation as well, but we are all in the same sinking ship.  I'd argue, however, that we are all getting a raw deal.

Finally, many of us baby boomers were against insane government spending and the endless war against the rest of the globe.  Our entire generation is not to blame for the problems we face today.  Our votes and letters to congress have done about as much good as the votes and letters of any other generation.

sand_puppy's picture
sand_puppy
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Go Tigers!

Nice to hear your electronic voice again here, Bob.  I missed you.

:-)

Sand-Puppy

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FreeNL
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Ron Paul is the only american

Ron Paul is the only american politician that ive ever liked. There are no stinklines on him like the rest.

I think he was your last hope.

kelvinator's picture
kelvinator
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The Will Always Be Hope When There Are Americans Like This:

Here's my favorite American today.   IMO, you won't find many as impressive in their bravery, patriotism and thoughtfulness as this guy.  He's someone I didn't know yesterday:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/video/2013/jun/09/nsa-whistleblower-edwa...

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jonesb.mta
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Posts: 105
Dr Ron Paul

Chris, Adam, whoever got Dr Ron Paul on the podcast, I thank you. I've been following Dr Paul since the early 80's and have voted for or written him in for most Presidential elections since then. I think he was our only hope and I feel he could have swayed attitudes if the mainstream media agreed with his attitudes but they don't even come close. We do have John Stossel on Fox now and more Libertarian types are appearing in the media every year but it will be too little too late. Then again they appear to be able to keep this charade up forever.

kelvinator's picture
kelvinator
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Posts: 111
NSA WhistleBlower Turns Out to Be Ron Paul Supporter

I didn't know it when I posted the link to his interview above in this thread.   The more I listen to interviews with this guy, the more I'm impressed with who he is and what he's done.   The force of his act, his intelligence and who he is as a person is likely to create a significant problem for the authoritarian forces in the US government, in my opinion.

Oliveoilguy's picture
Oliveoilguy
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Posts: 401
Background on Ron Paul

A perhaps, little known fact about Ron Paul is that he delivered thousands of babies in his district when he was an OBGYN physician. Some believe that the loyalty of those he delivered and their children and their children has kept in in office, whereas others as outspoken have met a different fate.

Like others in this thread I concur that Ron Paul is an exceptional human being and gives us a sense  of how statesmen were in ages past. He and Rand give me hope.

Woodman's picture
Woodman
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Posts: 1027
Lost faith in Federal government

Except for Ron Paul I can't think of many politicians on the national level that I have confidence in to understand and be honest about our real challenges.  thanks fo rthe interview!

gregroberts's picture
gregroberts
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I would recommend

I would recommend reading "The Most Dangerous Superstition" by Larkin Rose.

The use of force in human interaction is the biggest problem confronting all humanity. If you dig deep enough you will find that Ron Paul is a voluntaryist, he rejects the use of force and believes that each of us own ourselves and can do what we want as long as we leave others alone to do the same. Minding your own business is the key to freedom.

MarkM's picture
MarkM
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Agreed

Greg,

I second the recommendation on Rose's book. It is unfortunate that we are indoctrinated from infancy to "obey authority" and force is the only tool in authority's bag..

applecorona's picture
applecorona
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Ron Paul

Just a few words of thanks in interviewing Dr. Paul. I should have been kicked in the rear for not believing in him a few years back. Dr. M. thanks again.

cmartenson's picture
cmartenson
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Posts: 3510
What I admire about Ron Paul

applecorona wrote:

Just a few words of thanks in interviewing Dr. Paul. I should have been kicked in the rear for not believing in him a few years back. Dr. M. thanks again.

What I admire about Ron Paul is that he never wavered in his views about the Fed, the role of government, monetary policy, fiscal policy, or wars.

Whether you agree with his positions or not, I think you have to admire a person who can spend decades in a work environment where you run counter to the culture and prevailing attitudes.  And not just a little bit, but pretty much in direct opposition sometimes, and orthogonal the rest of the time.

Persistence, conviction, and firm in his beliefs over what's right vs. what's wrong means he gets to hold his head high knowing that his principles were not compromised.

How many can say that?

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BeingThere
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Posts: 50
Ron Paul and the Mahhhket

The problem with RP is that he doesn't address the real issue which is the globalised corporatization.

While we wring our hands about the Prism and other stasi meets reality TV style spying here, we fail to notice that the T attacks were done by those who were called to attention, yet they are quatifying 7billion people on earth. You need to ask why and the answer is the unending war is peace scenario is a cover for transnational control over sovereign states.

By not calling out the banking system and not calling out TPP the Trans Pacific Pact being drafted in secret, we are failing to understand the real dangers that get in the way of having any control over the laws in this country. RP does not take issue with rampant privatization of the public sector everywhere.

Here's my point, we have an economic model that espouses infinite growth in a world with finite resoursces and as the oil and gas get too expensive to run this show, the need for global slavery and the private ownership of the former public wealth of countries will make up for it at least in the next few years.

Since they can't stop making the guarenteed profits, they press on for more power. The wars will continue and the corps will have tribunal courts made up of corporate judges to make sure no country can sue a company for defiling it.

Please listen to :http://www.kpfa.org/archive/id/92426

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Pick your battles

I agree with both Chris and BeingThere. I appreciate that Paul has been very consistent in his message(s), but I also agree that he doesn't go far enough. Looking only at the US government is incredibly shortsighted. Maybe he is just picking his battle.

BeingThere, TPP is very scary. Elizabeth Warren seems to be one politician taking up where RP left off but is expanding the issues outward. This out recently:

http://boingboing.net/2013/06/13/sen-warren-to-us-trade-rep-re.html

Who knows if she'll be as consistent as RP, but she seems to be off to a good start.

...for the record, I don't align myself with any one political ideology.

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Me Three & Four

I agree with Chris in appreciating Ron Paul's consistently strong counter-mainstream views on the Fed, civil rights, endless deficit-spending, absurd US war entanglements and many other issues.   As I've posted elsewhere, though, I very much disagree with RP and the general libertarian philosophy that the only problem is big government, and that we'd be okay if we just let the free market work its magic - that far from covers it, and in fact, a weak government with no power to regulate free markets and enforce laws opens the field for a major source of repression.  

As per gillbilly and BeingThere, corporate dominance and cartels now are evolving to become uber-versions of the traditional crime families and feudal lords that have historically dominated crony-based, non-democratic societies.  To me, they're a key reality and concern today, and you actually need a gov't with some power to represent ordinary people to oppose them - otherwise the non-insiders, & the non-wealthy will be steamrolled.     I donated repeatedly to Elizabeth Warren's campaign, and so far I feel like I'm getting my money's worth - this link below is about her recent letter to the Fed, the SEC and the Justice Dept., basically, asking why they never prosecuted the banks during the financial crisis.   Of course, we'll only get mumbling for an answer, but putting pressure on these folks, which now too often simply act as agents of the wealthy, is important.

Like you, gillbilly, I also don't align myself with any one political ideology...

http://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/senator-elizabeth-warrens-may-14-2013-4...

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The trouble with Ron Paul

Another issue I forgot to mention before:
If there is no regulation there are no checks and balances to stop monopoly, and crony capitalism. In other words those on the right are fighting the idea of government but have failed to point out what fascism means and when the government sees the special interests as clients. (instead of we the people)

Just saying that government should not provide a safety net is easy, but in fact RP's political manager from his first run for president died of pneumonia in his 40's  at a time that he was going through  a divorce and wasn't paying into health insurance. This is a tragic death that didn't have to happen.

Imagine a first world country that has widespread diseases that anyone could get and all kinds of conditions we haven't seen in generations because we don't see ourselves as in a shared society.

The fact is we have people on the top that have profits guanteed to them. The sovereign welath funds that Morgan Chase  arranged for wealthy arabs on our hhighways and parking meters are guranteed to make a profit and yet we are not to be guarnateed on our social safety net that we pay for with every check we earn.

The libertarian thinking is too simplistic. At the same time Lloyd Blankfein was being interviewed by a gaggle of reporters on the street and he turned around and said, "The American people will have to live without their entitlements"

Who's he and why is he entitled to say that? Does he want the ss trust under his auspices? ---That's my theory and I'm sticking with it.
 

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"and in fact, a weak

"and in fact, a weak government with no power to regulate free markets and enforce laws opens the field for a major source of repression.  "

and in fact, a strong government with absolute power to regulate markets and enforce laws opens the field for a major source of repression.  

" regulate free markets " sounds like an oxy-moron to me.

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Free markets are a theoretical construct not a fact

We are living with the tyranny of  a "free market" that never was. It is in fact highly managed and benefits the few.

The free market is no more a reality than the communistic system. Neither one of these failed ideas take human nature into account. Greed and power mongering will always be with us. Communism doesn't work because some will always want more. Free markets don't work because everyone needs to live in the framework of laws and not hover above laws. Everyone needs some limits!

In the meantime the stock market (gold and silver, really) is the only game in town. We used to have choices on how to make our money grow. CD's and savings accounts used to offer interest rates above inflation. You can watch your money grow and then disappear. Those with the super computers get the money.

In trade, only the owners of the means of production are making a killing. TPP will totally sell us out and we will lose more jobs. Maybe that's why we're fixing to get into a larger arena: Mideast war.....

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The Trouble With Being There

"If there is no regulation there are no checks and balances to stop monopoly, and crony capitalism."

Funny, we do have regulation and these things still exist.

"In other words those on the right are fighting the idea of government but have failed to point out what fascism means and when the government sees the special interests as clients. (instead of we the people)"

Fascism is the merger of the state and corporations.

"Just saying that government should not provide a safety net is easy, but in fact RP's political manager from his first run for president died of pneumonia in his 40's  at a time that he was going through  a divorce and wasn't paying into health insurance. This is a tragic death that didn't have to happen."

Ron Paul believes that your need does not give anyone the right to force others to provide for that need. Certainly this person had friends who he could of asked for help, there's more to this story than we are seeing here.

"Imagine a first world country that has widespread diseases that anyone could get and all kinds of conditions we haven't seen in generations because we don't see ourselves as in a shared society."

A shared society, another pretty word for moral cannibals.

"The fact is we have people on the top that have profits guanteed to them."

By who?

The sovereign welath funds that Morgan Chase  arranged for wealthy arabs on our hhighways and parking meters are guranteed to make a profit and yet we are not to be guarnateed on our social safety net that we pay for with every check we earn."

WTF?

"The libertarian thinking is too simplistic."

Yes, not forcing people to do things is so simple.

At the same time Lloyd Blankfein was being interviewed by a gaggle of reporters on the street and he turned around and said, "The American people will have to live without their entitlements"

You are not entitled to anything, each person should take care of themselves and not force others through govt to supply their needs. Of course there are people who need help, friends and family would be a good place to start, then voluntary private charity, and if you are so unlikable that no one will help you then what's the point of living?

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Kent Synder

As it turns out, Paul was not speaking purely in hypotheticals. Back in 2008, Kent Snyder — Paul's former campaign chairman — died of complications from pneumonia. Like the man in Blitzer's example, the 49-year-old Snyder (pictured) was relatively young and seemingly healthy* when the illness struck. He was also uninsured. When he died on June 26, 2008, two weeks after Paul withdrew his first bid for the presidency, his hospital costs amounted to $400,000. The bill was handed to Snyder's surviving mother (pictured, left), who was incapable of paying. Friends launched a website to solicit donations.

http://gawker.com/5840024/ron-pauls-campaign-manager-died-of-pneumonia-penniless-and-uninsured

Looks like he still recieved medical care but died anyway and left the bill for others to pay.

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RE Blankfein

I see you don't see throught he ideology. Lloyd Blankfein thinks he's "entitled" to change laws catch up with Matt Taibbi's articles and he thinks ss and medicare should be privatized. He most likely thinks that GS should be managing the ss trust.

I keep wonderinig who are the entitled? Those who have paid all their lives into an insurance for their golden years? or those who have turned govt. into their benefactor. When I see wealthy congressman farmers who get govt. susbidies arguing against the pittance that the poor receive---sorry I think that's just disgusting in very simple terms.

Sorry but just saying you're on you own is too simple. You can't keep firing people in the Romney mode and expect them to pay their way while housing, food and energy costs keep mounting ever higher. It can't be done! You can't have these two things going on at the same time. Either those on top have to accept less than 400% profit over thiir employees and hire more people or it's going to collapse.

I strong recommend you read Naomi Klein's "The Shock Doctrine" the rise of disaster capitalism.

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Concerning Dr. Paul

This is the first time I've seriously considered dropping my membership.  If I really wanted to hear this kind of stuff, I could save a few bucks, turn on the radio, and simply listen to Glenn Beck or someone equally removed from reality.

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t.tanner

t.tanner wrote:

This is the first time I've seriously considered dropping my membership.  If I really wanted to hear this kind of stuff, I could save a few bucks, turn on the radio, and simply listen to Glenn Beck or someone equally removed from reality.

Could you elaborate on what you disagree with? I'm sincerely interested in your point of view.

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Regulated Free Markets an Oxy-Moron?

Wow! You and I live in very, very different mental worlds, Gregroberts.  That's like saying a regulated free society is an oxymoron - ie a society with laws can't be free.  In fact, laws are an absolute necessity to create a balanced environment that supports the most individual freedom and justice for all, aren't they, rather than domination and blatant theft and extortion by the most powerful, as exists now in financial markets?

It's always been a tough balance.  But then, that is exactly the problem and usually the end of conversation with libertarians for me - they never see that.  For me, their view is way too simplistic and doesn't correspond to history or current reality.  The idea that things would be great if we eliminated laws that regulate what people can do - and particularly in business & markets - just seems absurd.  The problem is that real and fair regulations don't exist now.  Libertarians seem to argue that this situation should be made worse by just cutting regulation much more, and become like the wild west - and somehow courts defending individual rights would take care of things.   Courts?  The wealthy love the courts - money burning time sumps that take forever to do the most basic things, assuming they aren't just  bought and paid for in a lawless world.  Libertarians in finance complain, for example, that people want to regulate derivatives, insider trading,  high-speed trading, etc.  I don't get it.

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" For me, their view is way

" For me, their view is way too simplistic and doesn't correspond to history or current reality". 

I would imagine that during the time when slavery was "the law of the land" in this country the slave owners felt this way about the people who were against slavery. Who's going to pick the cotton? 

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Oliveoilguy wrote: t.tanner

Oliveoilguy wrote:

t.tanner wrote:

This is the first time I've seriously considered dropping my membership.  If I really wanted to hear this kind of stuff, I could save a few bucks, turn on the radio, and simply listen to Glenn Beck or someone equally removed from reality.

Could you elaborate on what you disagree with? I'm sincerely interested in your point of view.

...and we have...crickets.

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Co-option and Circular arguments

Unfortunately when you have an interview with a (ex)politician, this is the back and forth circular arguments you get. That would be my guess as to what ttanner is sick of. Another reason might be the fear of co-option. I expressed this concern to Chris once. As the message from this site and others becomes more mainstream, I think there is a potential for and fear that the message to be co-opted by a political party or the system.

gregroberts, I could argue you point for point on the libertarianism and poke many holes in your arguments, just as you are doing to others, but for what purpose? Does that mean I'm on some other side? Does that mean I don't recognize some of the good that comes from the libertarian ideology? In my opinion, there is not one ideology that is complete. All of them are only partially based in "reality." There are many realities (economic class, ethnicity, gender, geographic location, etc) which is why no one ideology fits them all.  I posted awhile back that Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence off the backs of slaves. There is hypocrisy built into every ideology and reality. It doesn't mean we shouldn't strive for ethics and morals that are intrinsic to these ideologies, but we have to acknowledge there are also intinsic balances and tradeoffs between things like the individual/community, economic growth/environment, cognition/experience, etc.

The discussion needs to be larger than ideologies, but also include them. One question that Grover recently posted that I think would be a great point of discussion is... when is enough enough? When do we have enough of anything and how do we accept that limit?

Happy Father's Day

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Ron Paul

Sure thing.  I have a couple of serious issues with Ron Paul.

He’s a racist.  One example:  ”We don’t think a child of 13 should be held responsible as a man of 23. That’s true for most people, but black males age 13 who have been raised on the streets and who have joined criminal gangs are as big, strong, tough, scary and culpable as any adult and should be treated as such.”

He’s completely wrong on energy & climate.  He’s voted against removing oil & gas exploration subsidies, he voted against raising CAFE standards, he’s tried to repeal weatherization assistance for low income U.S. residents, he’s voted against regulation of greenhouse gases.  http://www.ontheissues.org/2012/Ron_Paul_Energy_+_Oil.htm  He wants to remove restrictions on oil & gas drilling, he wants to eliminate the federal gas tax, he supports using more coal, he wants to eliminate the EPA.  http://www.ontheissues.org/2012/Ron_Paul_Environment.htm

He believes the Federal income tax rate should be 0%.  http://www.ontheissues.org/2012/Ron_Paul_Tax_Reform.htm

He’s afraid that fences built to keep illegal immigrants out will actually be used to keep Americans from leaving the U.S.  http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2011/12/28/10-outrageous-ron-paul-quotes.american-concentration-camp.html

He wants to abolish the CIA, the FBI and the IRS because “because you know, most of our history, we didn't have those institutions.”  http://townhall.com/columnists/johnhawkins/2011/12/20/why_ron_paul_can_never_be_president_in_12_quotes/page/full

Now to my earlier post.  I’m not saying that folks don’t have a right to support the politicians of their choice.  They do - and that includes someone as far out in left field as Ron Paul.  But when Chris promotes Mr. Paul - who I find morally bereft and intellectually challenged - I believe it reflects poorly on his judgement, and on this site.  I read PP because I feel it typically offers a reasoned, rational look at our economy, our energy situations and (at least some aspects of) our environment.  By tacitly endorsing Ron Paul, Chris is steering PP toward the shoals of partisan politics.  If that continues, I’ll be canceling my membership - and I suspect I won’t be the only one.

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Patience

is a virtue.

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Our greatest problem

One of our biggest threats is not being able to have a discussion without a group of people getting upset. We must remember that we are all the same and different in many ways. We all eat, breath the air and drink the water. So we must come to some kind of agreement on how to best make that work for everyone fairly. We can make this work but only together!

I think Ron Paul's interview was great. Do I agree with everything he stands for? No but he at least appears honest and is headed in the correct direction. I can not imagine the pressure and temptations that someone in his position has endured. The reason I came to this site is I could not find anyone else that tied all our problems together. I want to hide my head in the sand just thinking about one or two problems let alone hundreds. I give anyone credit who can talk about these things every week and not fall apart.

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RP

Thanks T.Tanner for the explanation.

I concur with your objections, but of course, I also think no harm done when intelligent arguments can be made and people might actually make sense when they're made to looks at something logically.

The idea of imposing austerity on the multitudes while Ceos, bankers and monopolies in defense, argriculture, health and pharma and insurance go totally unchecked is one of our biggest problems. The very issue of NSA big data feeds into this and so I think RP would have to make comment on these entitlements too. The fact that he doesn't leaves a gaping hole in his arguments. Yes, he is an ideologue and that's why he named his son Rand (Ayn Rand).

I understand why CM thought RP was good for an interview in lieu of the NSA wire-tapping, but if we don't see power in the hands of very undemocratic corporations as an equal problem to government, then we are truly focussing on the wrong things.

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Ron Paul is a constitutionalist.

RP's main point, imho, is a smaller fed government, as defined by the constiturtion.  That certainly does not prohibit large states (e.g., MA, CA, NY, etc) from doing the rest. Large local goverment is the best way to mainting control in that you can attend the town hall meetings and help direct the community.  Isn't that the basis of the communities that are being proposed at this site?

MM

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Town meetings local control

I like the idea of town meetings and local involvement in politics that would go from the bottom up. Americans should be much more involved in politics which would allow them to counter Corporatism, but they have to understand the issues and not just listen to easy answers or buy into ideology.

The problem with paring down Fed govt would make the US weaker in today's global theater, even if we weren't so aggressive as in "We never saw a war we didn't like..." We could get carved up by other nation states that ...ahh want to be nation states. (unlike our elite).

I mentioned a few posts back that Morgan Stanley sold Sovereign Wealth funds to cover costs in the midwest  of parking meters and some highways. Who owns these funds for 80 years? Wealthy arabs, who are get this one, guarenteed a profit. That means we are not free ot build a rail system nearby, lest it creates competition because the monopolies hate competition.How many Americans would choose paying less taxes or selling infrastructure to Arabs? Put that way, maybe we will have a different dialogue. That's why I recommend people read Matt Taibbi's "Griftopia".

And..., think about how huge local taxes would be, if you shrunk the Fed govt.?  The Federal govt has the GDP of $15 Trill.approx.  Someone's gotta pay for infrastructure etc. It's a fool's paradise to think that you can run this show without taxes. In fact, the more people pay into the system the cheaper govt services are. You can't compare the costs. Privatized industries who are in the stock market will charge the Govt (we the people) far more than govt services. Just a fact of life.

What does being a strict constitutionalist mean?

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constitutionalist.

I'm sure it means different things to different people, but for me, like RP, we don't need federal departments for everything.  Education, HHS, HUD are a few of the worse and are used as vote buying machines.  In my state, MA, the state runs education, urban development, and health services.

The constitution was designed for the federal goverment to provide defence of the nation as its number one piority and even RP does not propose to change that.  Maybe scale back the overreach and become a more protectionist nation. Are we preventing WWIII or provoking one? I think constitutionalist related to the freedom to live in a big goverment state (MA) or a small one (UT) without excessive overreach by the feds.

Carreer politicians are the problem.  They run their bugets like a private business, employing family and friend in return for votes.  Reduce taxes at the federal level and raise them at the local level and choose the community you want.

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"Yes, he is an ideologue and

"Yes, he is an ideologue and that's why he named his son Rand (Ayn Rand)."

Randal Howard Paul (You meant Ayn Randal didn't you?)

the novelist Ayn Rand was not the inspiration for his first name; he went by "Randy" while growing up.[9

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rand_Paul

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Sound Money

I have followed Peak Prosperity for quite some time now and I very much appreciate the ideas presented.  I finally felt compelled to register specifically to comment on this topic as I think that this discussion is a good one. 

Not everyone has to agree with all of Dr. Paul’s political policies to appreciate the true beauty of what he has accomplished.  Dr. Paul has awakened more people from their drunken consumerist, materialist, commercialized, entertainment-driven stupor than any other individual in recent history.    By publicly challenging the status-quo, Dr. Paul has empowered people to do their own research on the problems facing society today rather than trusting the mainstream media talking heads to do the research for them.

While a majority of Americans are still stuck in the egocentric/ethnocentric mindset that says that “my car is better than yours” and “my country is better than yours” and “my football team is better than yours”, there are many young folks out there who are developing a more comprehensive worldview because someone on the national stage was willing to stand up and call out the status-quo.

A common criticism of Dr. Paul is that he does not go far enough and I do agree that he does not press hard enough on certain topics and he does not touch certain topics.  But how far do we think this one man should go?  Why is it his responsibility to cover everything?  I would suggest that those who think that Ron falls short in certain areas should take it upon themselves to carry the banner for those causes. 

There is plenty of injustice out there for each of us to speak out against our own prioritized issues.

It seems to me that there are two schools of thought presented in this discussion.  The first appears to be that massive multi-national corporations have co-opted too much power over governments and individuals and that this is our most pressing problem.  The second appears to be that a massive unconstitutional federal government has acquired too much power and it poses the greatest threat to each of us.

From my perspective, I think these two probably go hand in hand and they are both a major problem.

But I think that there is only one place to start if we are serious about coming up with a solution to each of these problems simultaneously.

And that place to start is sound money.  It seems to me that both the federal government and the MNCs have gotten so large and have acquired so much power due mostly to the inflationary money regime that exists in America and most other developed nations.  The MNCs have nestled up next to government right beside the money spigots and so they, along with governments, get the privilege of spending the new money before its purchasing power has been debased.

Without this one major advantage, I do not think that governments or MNCs could be so big and powerful and sound money would eliminate this advantage.

Sound money may not be a panacea, but I think that it is the only logical place to start.  We could talk about laws all day long and we could argue about whether we need better regulations or no regulations but at the end of the day I don’t think any of it matters until we have a sound monetary system where the money supply cannot be inflated at will.

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A Lovely Irish Lass in Full Throat.

You are going to be inspired by this lovely Irish Lass.

You go girl.

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Aurthur, wow

what a find. here's what some think of her.

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RP's support of freedom

I enjoyed the RP podcast - I appreciate Dr. Paul's positions on many things and am glad he has been able to contribute a contrarian voice at such a high level of government.

However, I find his definition of freedom flawed. It's a Chinese Menu style of interpretation: Let people choose any freedoms that they want except for those he doesn't personally like, which he will make illegal. Isn't that  in direct contradiction of the concept of freedom? It sounds like another helping of authoritarian government to me. 

If he honestly supports freedom, then he has to tolerate every citizen's own interpretation of it, even and especially when it conflicts with his own.

-Early

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An interesting trend

I love the criticisms of Dr. Paul. 
Arguably the only politician who's been consistent with our nation's expressed constitutional values, and people pick him apart for things that are viewpoints - viewpoints that compose the necessary pool of conflicting values required of a representitive republic.

Where's this discontent with Barney Frank, or Chris Dodd?
With the Obama adminstration or  the Bush and Clinton Dynasties?

Have we gotten to a point in society where we're so offended by politicians that we're willing to silently begrudge the worst, and openly deride those who're actually working towards something good, based on the principles set forth by our constitution?

Ron Paul's supporters are "automatons", "Paul Bots", fringe thinkers, and yes, Janet, even our much loathed 'terrorists'. Enemies of the state, and dangerous eccentrics tearing the seams of decency at societies edges.
Now, he's a racist because of a very clear set of statistics, and an anti-environmentalist because he refuses to dabble in creating legal structure that he doesn't believe in?

These kinds of claims are vitriol. They are legitimate only to the dogmatic, and the insinuation that interviewing someone is a claim of support for partisanship is likewise the kind of sensationalism that purports contradictory opinons as some sort of inexcusable offense. It's not.
It's just another set of values and opinions.

I find it ironic that left leaning contributors have received no such scolding.

Thank you, Dr. Paul - for your strict adherence to our democractic prinicples, for knowing when to stand up, and when to call attention to delicate truths. Thank you for your service to our nation, and thank you for the time you took to provide the readers here with an excellent interview.

Cheers,

Aaron 
 

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generational "fairness"

The truth is that every dollar that you have sent to the FedGov, in any form (including SSI, SSD, Medicare, etc.) is a tax. Those monies are not yours. If you get "a benefit" it will be at the political whim and capability of the US Congress to send it to you. There is no legal obligation imposed on this or any other Congress to give you "benefits". You are on your own, brother.

The Congress WILL pay Treasury obligations, no-matter-what. If they need to put you to work in a Chinese labor camp in Montana to get them paid, they will. If they need to "assess" 30% of your asset base to balance the stripped-down budget, they could. You might be a terrorist, or know an Imam who knows one, making you an enemy collaborator no longer qualifying to have US-based assets or rights.

I disagree completely that "many" baby-boomers were against .gov spending. They were just like most Americans: taking full advantage early and often in the welfare/warfare State. 

The real wealth and labor that my parents and grandparents wish to draw upon must be delivered locally by the younger generation. Will these young people be denied the wealth base needed to raise children and have families so that The Largest Generation will drive along in large cars and live alone in large houses? Yes.  This will cause anger, and worse.

Cheers from Portlandia.

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