It’s refreshing to hear a politician make perfect sense when talking about the proper role of the
government in the economy and the lives of the people. Dr. Ron Paul, a physician, is the only Republican presidential candidate who gets the issues mostly right. The 12 term Congressman from U.S. ’ 14th District is definitely the Libertarian conscience of the Republican Party. Texas
Paul would have the
return to the gold standard to protect our currency and force a balanced budget. He realizes that the nation is in the mess it’s in right now because of decades of faulty government monetary policy which has killed the dollar and driven the country ever closer to bankruptcy. United States
He has long criticized the “out-of-control, secretive” Federal Reserve Bank, and its current Chairman, Ben Bernanke, for his quantitative easing approach to fixing the stagnant economy, a measure which flooded the financial markets with dollars in an attempt to make money more available for borrowing and lending.
Bernanke's buying of bank assets and pouring more than $2 trillion into the economy has failed miserably according to Paul, a conclusion that the Chairman implicitly acknowledged recently in a speech in which he said there would be no more bailout programs.
Bernanke has already used up and is out of such options now to save the economy, said the Congressman. “But all he needs to do is quit monetizing debt. Interest rates would go up and Congress would be forced to cut debt."
Still, Bernanke has vowed to keep interest rates artificially low until 2013. “You can't keep interest rates low without monetizing debt because if somebody else doesn't buy it, he has to buy it. So he's continuously quantitatively easing," Paul maintains. That policy was instrumental in the housing bubble that burst in 2007 and sparked the economic meltdown from which the
economy is still trying to recover. U.S.
"Let the people who live beyond their means, let them go bankrupt," Paul explains. "Hands off, give us a sound currency, free up the markets; Property rights; Enforce contracts. Make sure people go bankrupt when they go bankrupt and don't bail out their buddies."
As president, he would end the unconstitutional Federal Reserve System. The Fed, Paul explains, essentially creates money out of thin air, manipulates interest rates, and interferes with the free market. By doing so, the Fed fuels our economy’s boom-bust cycle and has helped devalue our dollar by over 95% since its inception almost a century ago.
But the mainstream media on both the left and the right mostly ignore the Congressman, describing his libertarian thinking as unconventional, despite the fact that he is doing surprisingly well in the polls, which Paul thinks is because many Americans finally realize it's time to return to the principles on which the nation was founded.
"I'm fascinated with your word 'unconventional,'" he told Fox News. “Isn't it strange that we can apply that word to freedom and liberty and the Constitution and limited government and a balanced budget?” “As a matter of fact, as president I would reduce the power of government. I wouldn't seek it. I would never take the power from the Congress. I would not go to war without congressional approval."
Paul has opposed George W. Bush’s recent wars, and criticizes our participation in NATO military action against
, saying such policies lead to too many unintended consequences. He said his own approach to international relations rests on national security, not "pretending that we can pick the dictators around the world." Libya
We could recover $2 billion by pulling troops out of the conflict in
and applying the money at home, Paul says. "I propose that we could save a billion dollars from the overseas war mongering, bring half that home, put it against the deficit, and yes, tide people over until we come to our senses." Libya
Nation-building, foreign aid to dictators, and acting as the world’s police force weakens our country by sending precious resources to other countries while we are in economic crises, and our current policies provide incentive for more enemies to take up arms against us, Paul explains.
"The one telltale sign of the support I'm getting is because of my foreign policy. I get more donations from active military duty people than all the other candidates put together, which tells me a lot and tells the American people a lot," Paul said.
Congressman Paul is also right on when he says he would eliminate many useless government agencies such as the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), which, even before the recent East Coast hurricane Irene hit, Paul dubbed “the real disaster.”
"FEMA creates many of our problems because they sell the insurance because you can't buy it from a private company, which means there's a lot of danger, so we pay people to build on beaches, and then we have to go and rescue them," he explains. "It's so far removed from the market and the understanding of what insurance should be about. Insurance should measure risk; it shouldn't be a bailout program endlessly."
He maintains that the aid provided by FEMA has helped ruin the economy by creating a false dependency. "FEMA has been around since 1978, it has one of the worst reputations for a bureaucracy ever," Paul said. "It's a system of bureaucratic central economic planning, which is a policy that is deeply flawed," Paul observes, adding: “it's time to bury the agency.”
Paul would abolish the dreaded unconstitutional Transportation Security Agency (
TSA), repeal Obamacare, and guarantee that what is taken from taxpayers to pay for Medicare and Medicaid is not raided for other purposes. He would insist on a balanced budget, refuse to raise the debt ceiling, and eliminate all income, capital gains, and death taxes, putting the IRS out of business for good.
He supports home schooling and believes that Parents should have far more control over educating their children. He stops short of advocating elimination of the Department of Education but realizes that big government spending programs and one-size-fits-all central planning are not the answer.
Enforcing border security is a matter of national security, says Paul. He would offer no amnesty for illegal immigrants, abolish the welfare state which attracts them, and end automatic birthright citizenship.
Paul also believes in free market solutions for our energy needs. He would eliminate the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and its onerous ineffective regulations, remove restrictions on drilling, repeal the federal tax on gasoline, and eliminate barriers to the use of coal and nuclear power.
In sum, Congressman Ron Paul is a breath of fresh air and exactly the kind of president this nation needs right now, but no one is perfect. His religion dictates a strict anti-abortion political position, which I believe is unconstitutional and anti-liberty, and I’m sure there are other points upon which we might disagree.
Never-mind that, I say … 95 out of 100 ain’t so bad.