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27 April 2010
Mr. DANIEL E. LUNGREN of California. Mr. Speaker, at this time I would like to yield 5 minutes to the indomitable distinguished gentleman from Texas (Mr. PAUL), who has worked on this issue for some time.
(Mr. PAUL asked and was given permission to revise and extend his remarks.)
2010 Ron Paul 18:1
Mr. PAUL. I thank the gentleman from California.
2010 Ron Paul 18:2
Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of this legislation, and I want to compliment Mr. MITCHELL from Arizona for getting this bill to the floor. We have worked on this for several years. I am pleased that this is going to be passed today.
2010 Ron Paul 18:3
Much has been said about the unemployment rate in this country. And I saw one other take on unemployment today, where it said that for low-income people below $20,000, the unemployment rate is actually 31 percent, which shows how devastating this recession is, and for some it is an actual depression.
2010 Ron Paul 18:4
I would like this bill to be passed, but not just as symbolism. It is good symbolism and important symbolism. As was mentioned by the gentleman from California, it is not a tremendous amount of money, but it is important for us to recognize that we have a serious problem in this country and that we shouldnít be careless about the way we think about this problem. It shouldnít make us feel necessarily good because we passed this. This is just necessary.
2010 Ron Paul 18:5
It does remind me of a piece of legislation I introduced many years ago, in the 1970s, when we had rampant inflation, which I anticipate will probably come back to this country. Back then we had a 15 percent inflation rate. My suggestion then in the form of legislation, to get the Membersí attention to understand what inflation was all about, I said we should take a pay cut at the rate of inflation. Even today we might suggest that. There is a lot more inflation out there than we admit to. So maybe not only should we freeze our salaries, maybe we should be taking a pay cut so that we can do a better job, because we really canít brag about the job that we have done for the country because of the condition the country is in.
2010 Ron Paul 18:6
But I would like to extend this motivation to freeze the pay of Congressmen to freezing a few other things. I would like to see our budget at least frozen where it is. That would go a long way to solving some of our budgetary problems. And how about freezing the debt level. Letís not raise the debt level. Instead, this next year our national debt is going to go up about $2 trillion when you add up all that we borrow from our trust funds.
2010 Ron Paul 18:7
Also, I would like to see a freeze on regulations because regulations usually backfire. There are unintended consequences, they cost a lot of money, they act as a tax, and they donít improve the economy overall.
2010 Ron Paul 18:8
I would be in support of freezing the wealth transfer system, the system that most people think is going to help all the poor people. The trouble is the wealth transfer system helps the rich people, and they are the ones who get the bailouts and the poor people donít. So a freeze on wealth transfer would go a long way toward restoring a free society and a constitutional government.
2010 Ron Paul 18:9
Also, I think the consensus of the American people today is we ought to freeze the bailouts. Letís not bail out anybody anymore. But it looks like it will be a long time before that happens because we have a monetary system where we have somebody over there called the Federal Reserve that says we can print money at will, and our job is to be the lender of last resort. That means to bail anybody and everybody out that needs money. And it looks like that will be domestic as well as international.
2010 Ron Paul 18:10
I would like to freeze the ability of the Federal Reserve to print money out of thin air. That in moral terms is counterfeit, and yet that is the encouragement for us to run up our deficits because the Fed can come in and increase the money supply. A sound monetary system would have frozen anybodyís ability to just create money out of thin air.
2010 Ron Paul 18:11
I would also like to freeze the income tax at the 1912 level. And that indeed would be a real boost to the people of this country. All of a sudden there would be great wealth in the hands of the consumer. Just think if all the money that we spent on the bailouts that just tided things over, if just a portion of that had been used to get rid of the income tax, I think the money would have been better spent because the people would have been spending the money instead of the bureaucrats and the politicians and the regulators that bailed out the people who were making all the money in the first place.
2010 Ron Paul 18:12
But I would also extend this freeze onto some other things, too. I would like to freeze some of our militarism. I think we have enough fighting going on. I donít think we should expand the war. I donít think we should be looking for another enemy. I would like to freeze the sanctions on countries. I would like to see a lot more free trade. I would like to see that the bombing is not extended, that we quit allowing our CIA to extend the bombing of countries that have not attacked us. I would also like to put a freeze on this concept of preventive war. This whole idea of the concept of preventive war means that we can literally start the war.
2010 Ron Paul 18:13
So, yes, itís good that we are freezing the salaries of us here in the Congress. But if we really want to restore the Republic, we will freeze a lot of these other issues as well.