The Book of Ron Paul
2012 Ron Paul Chapter 20
14 November 2012
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Congressional Record Cached
The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mr. DOLD). Under the Speakers announced policy of January 5, 2011, the gentleman from Texas (Mr. PAUL) is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the majority leader.
2012 Ron Paul 20:1
Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, this may be the last time I speak on the House floor. At the end of the year, Ill leave Congress after 23 years in office over a 36-year period. My goals in 1976 were the same as they are today: promote peace and prosperity by a strict adherence to the principles of individual liberty.
2012 Ron Paul 20:2
It was my opinion that the course that the U.S. embarked on in the latter part of the 20th century would bring us a major financial crisis and engulf us in a foreign policy that would over-extend us and undermine our national security.
2012 Ron Paul 20:3
To achieve these goals I sought, the government would have had to shrink in size and scope, reduce spending, change the monetary system, and reject the unsustainable cost of policing the world and expanding the American Empire.
2012 Ron Paul 20:4
The problems seemed to be overwhelming and impossible to solve, yet from my viewpoint, just following the constraints placed on the Federal Government by the Constitution would have been a good place to start.
2012 Ron Paul 20:5
b 1410 Just how much did I accomplish? In many ways, according to conventional wisdom, my off-and-on career in Congress from 1976 to 2012 accomplished very little—no named legislation, no named Federal buildings or highways, thank goodness.
2012 Ron Paul 20:6
In spite of my efforts, the government has grown exponentially, taxes remain excessive, and the prolific increase of incomprehensible regulations continues. Wars are constant and pursued without congressional declaration, deficits rise to the sky, poverty is rampant, and dependency on the Federal Government is now worse than any time in our history. All this, with minimal concerns for the deficits and unfunded liabilities that common sense tells us cannot go on much longer.
2012 Ron Paul 20:7
A grand, but never mentioned, bipartisan agreement allows for the well-kept secret that keeps the spending going. One side doesnt give up one penny on military spending, the other side doesnt give up one penny on welfare spending, while both sides support the bailouts and the subsidies for the banking and the corporate elite. And the spending continues as the economy weakens and the downward spiral continues.
2012 Ron Paul 20:8
As the government continues fiddling around, our liberties and our wealth burn in the flames of a foreign policy that makes us less safe. The major stumbling block to real change in Washington is the total resistance to admitting that the country is broke. This has made compromising just to agree to increased spending inevitable since neither side has any intention on cutting spending.
2012 Ron Paul 20:9
The country and the Congress will remain divisive since theres no loot left to divvy up. Without this recognition, the spenders in Washington will continue to march toward a fiscal cliff much bigger than the one anticipated this coming January.
2012 Ron Paul 20:10
Ive thought a lot about why those of us who believe in liberty as a solution have done so poorly in convincing others of its benefits. If liberty is what we claim it is—the principle that protects all personal, social, and economic decisions necessary for maximum prosperity and the best chance for peace— it should be an easy sell. Yet history has shown that the masses have been quite receptive to the promises of authoritarians which are rarely, if ever, fulfilled.
2012 Ron Paul 20:11
Should we have authoritarianism or liberty? If authoritarianism leads to poverty and war and less freedom for all individuals and is controlled by rich special interests, the people should be begging for liberty. There certainly was a strong enough sentiment for more freedom at the time of our founding that motivated those who were willing to fight in the revolution against the powerful British Government.
2012 Ron Paul 20:12
During my time in Congress, the appetite for liberty has been quite weak, the understanding of its significance negligible. Yet the good news is that, compared to 1976 when I first came to Congress, the desire for more freedom and less government in 2012 is much greater and growing, especially in grassroots America. Tens of thousands of teenagers and college-age students are, with great enthusiasm, welcoming the message of liberty.
2012 Ron Paul 20:13
I have a few thoughts as to why the people of a country like ours, once the freest and most prosperous, allowed the conditions to deteriorate to the degree that they have. Freedom, private property, and enforceable voluntary contracts generate wealth. In our early history we were very much aware of this. But in the early part of the 20th century, our politicians promoted the notion that the tax and monetary system had to change if we were to involve ourselves in excessive domestic and military spending. That is why Congress gave us the Federal Reserve and the income tax.
2012 Ron Paul 20:14
The majority of Americans and many government officials agree that sacrificing some liberty was necessary to carry out what some claim to be progressive ideas. Pure democracy became acceptable. They failed to recognize that what they were doing was exactly opposite of what the colonists were seeking when they broke away from the British.
2012 Ron Paul 20:15
Some complain that my arguments make no sense, since great wealth and the standard of living improved for many Americans over the last hundred years, even with these new policies.
2012 Ron Paul 20:16
But the damage to the market economy and the currency has been insidious and steady. It took a long time to consume our wealth, destroy the currency, undermine productivity, and get our financial obligations to a point of no return. Confidence sometimes lasts longer than deserved. Most of our wealth today depends on debt.
2012 Ron Paul 20:17
The wealth that we enjoyed and seemed to be endless allowed concern for the principle of a free society to be neglected. As long as most people believed the material abundance would last forever, worrying about protecting a competitive, productive economy and individual liberty seemed unnecessary.
2012 Ron Paul 20:18
The Age of Redistribution.
2012 Ron Paul 20:19
This neglect ushered in an age of redistribution of wealth by government kowtowing to any and all special interests, except for those who just wanted to be left alone. That is why today money in politics far surpasses money currently going into research and development and productive entrepreneurial efforts.
2012 Ron Paul 20:20
The material benefits became more important than the understanding and promoting the principles of liberty and a free market. It is good that material abundance is a result of liberty, but if materialism is all that we care about, problems are guaranteed.
2012 Ron Paul 20:21
The crisis arrived because the illusion that wealth and prosperity would last forever has ended. Since it was based on debt and a pretense that debt can be papered over by an out-of-control fiat monetary system, it was doomed to fail. We have ended up with a system that doesnt produce enough even to finance the debt and no fundamental understanding of why a free society is crucial to reversing these trends. If this is not recognized, the recovery will linger for a long time. Bigger government, more spending, more debt, more poverty for the middle class, and a more intense scramble by the elite special interests will continue.
2012 Ron Paul 20:22
We need an intellectual awakening. Without an intellectual awakening, the turning point will be driven by economic law. A dollar crisis will bring the current out-of-control system to its knees. If its not accepted that Big Government, fiat money, ignoring liberty, central economic planning, welfarism, and warfareism caused our crisis, we can expect a continuous and dangerous march toward corporatism and even fascism with even more loss of our liberties. Prosperity for a large middle class, though, will become an abstract dream.
2012 Ron Paul 20:23
This continuous move is no different than what we have seen in how our financial crisis of 2008 was handled. Congress first directed, with bipartisan support, bailouts for the wealthy. Then it was the Federal Reserve with its endless quantitative easing. If at first it doesnt succeed, try again; QE–1, QE– 2, QE–3, and with no results we try QE indefinitely—that is, until it, too, fails.
2012 Ron Paul 20:24
There is a cost to all of this, and let me assure you that delaying the payment is no longer an option. The rules of the market will extract its pound of flesh, and it wont be pretty.
2012 Ron Paul 20:25
The current crisis elicits a lot of pessimism, and the pessimism adds to less confidence in the future. The two feed on themselves, making our situation worse. If the underlying cause of the crisis is not understood, we cannot solve our problems.
2012 Ron Paul 20:26
The issue of warfare and welfare, deficits, inflationism and corporatism, bailouts and authoritarianism cannot be ignored. By only expanding these policies, we cannot expect good results. Everyone claims support for freedom, but too often its for ones own freedoms and not for others. Too many believe that there must be limits on freedom. They argue that freedom must be directed and managed to achieve fairness and equality, thus making it acceptable to curtail, through force, certain liberties. Some decide what and whose freedoms are to be limited. These are the politicians whose goal in life is power. Their success depends on gaining support from special interests.
2012 Ron Paul 20:27
We dont need more isms. The great news is the answer is not to be found in more isms. The answers are to be found in more liberty, which costs so much less. Under these circumstances, spending goes down, wealth production goes up, and the quality of life improves.
2012 Ron Paul 20:28
b 1420 Just this recognition, especially if we move in this direction, increases optimism, which, in itself, is beneficial. The follow-through with sound policies is required, which must be understood and supported by the people. But there is good evidence that the generation coming of age at the present time is supportive of moving in the direction of more liberty and self-reliance. The more this change and direction and the solutions become known, the quicker will be our return to optimism.
2012 Ron Paul 20:29
Our job, for those of us who believe that a different system than the one we have had for the last hundred years has driven us to this unsustainable crisis, is to be more convincing that there is a wonderful, uncomplicated and moral system that provides the answers. We had a taste of it in our early history.
2012 Ron Paul 20:30
We need not give up on the notion of advancing this cause. It worked, but we allowed our leaders to concentrate on the material abundance that freedom generates, while ignoring freedom itself. Now we have neither; but the door is open, out of necessity, for an answer.
2012 Ron Paul 20:31
The answer available is based on the Constitution, individual liberty, and prohibiting the use of government force to provide privileges and benefits to all special interests.
2012 Ron Paul 20:32
After over 100 years, we face a society quite different from the one that was intended by the Founders. In many ways, their efforts to protect future generations with the Constitution from this danger have failed. Skeptics at the time the Constitution was written in 1787 warned us of todays possible outcome. The insidious nature of the erosion of our liberties and the reassurance our great abundance gave us allowed the process to evolve into the dangerous period in which we now live.
2012 Ron Paul 20:33
Today we face a dependency on government largesse for almost every need. Our liberties are restricted and government operates outside the rule of law, protecting and rewarding those who buy or coerce government into satisfying their demands.
2012 Ron Paul 20:34
Here are a few examples: undeclared wars are commonplace. Welfare for the rich and poor is considered an entitlement. The economy is over-regulated, overtaxed, and grossly distorted by a deeply flawed monetary system. Debt is growing exponentially.
2012 Ron Paul 20:35
The PATRIOT Act and FISA legislation, passed without much debate, have resulted in a steady erosion of our Fourth Amendment rights. Tragically our government engages in preemptive war, otherwise known as aggression, with no complaints from the American people. The drone warfare we are pursuing worldwide is destined to end badly for us, as the hatred builds for innocent lives lost and the international laws flaunted.
2012 Ron Paul 20:36
Once we are financially weakened and militarily challenged, there will be a lot of resentment thrown our way.
2012 Ron Paul 20:37
Its now the law of the land that the military can arrest American citizens, hold them indefinitely without charges or a trial. Rampant hostility toward free trade is supported by a large number in Washington. Supporters of sanctions, currency manipulation, and WTO trade retaliation call the true free-traders isolationists. Sanctions are used to punish countries that dont follow our orders.
2012 Ron Paul 20:38
Bailouts and guarantees of all kinds of misbehavior are routine. Central economic planning through monetary policy regulations and legislative mandates has been acceptable policy.
2012 Ron Paul 20:39
I have a few questions. Excessive government has created such a mess, it prompts many questions.
2012 Ron Paul 20:40
Why are sick people who use medical marijuana put in prison?
2012 Ron Paul 20:41
Why does the Federal Government restrict the drinking of raw milk?
2012 Ron Paul 20:42
Why cant American manufacturers manufacture rope and other products from hemp?
2012 Ron Paul 20:43
Why are Americans not allowed to use gold and silver as legal tender, as mandated by the Constitution?
2012 Ron Paul 20:44
Why is Germany concerned enough to consider repatriating their gold held by the Fed for her in New York? Is it that the trust in the U.S. and dollar supremacy are beginning to wane?
2012 Ron Paul 20:45
Why do our political leaders believe its unnecessary to thoroughly audit our own gold?
2012 Ron Paul 20:46
Why cant Americans decide which type of light bulbs they can buy?
2012 Ron Paul 20:47
Why is the TSA permitted to abuse the rights of any American traveling by air?
2012 Ron Paul 20:48
Why should there be mandatory sentences, even up to life for crimes without victims, as our drug laws require?
2012 Ron Paul 20:49
Why have we allowed the Federal Government to regulate commodes in our homes?
2012 Ron Paul 20:50
Why is it political suicide for anyone to criticize APAC?
2012 Ron Paul 20:51
Why havent we given up on the drug war, since its an obvious failure and violates the peoples rights? Has nobody noticed that the authorities cant even keep drugs out of the prisons? How can making our entire society a prison solve the problem?
2012 Ron Paul 20:52
Why do we sacrifice so much getting unnecessarily involved in border disputes and civil strife around the world, and ignore the root cause of the most dangerous deadly border in the world, the one between Mexico and the United States?
2012 Ron Paul 20:53
Why does Congress willingly give up its prerogatives to the executive branch?
2012 Ron Paul 20:54
Why has changing the party in power never changed policy? Could it be that the views of both parties are essentially the same?
2012 Ron Paul 20:55
Why did the big banks, the large corporations, and foreign central banks get bailed out in 2008, and the middle class lost their jobs and their homes?
2012 Ron Paul 20:56
Why do so many in the government and the Federal officials believe that creating money out of thin air creates wealth?
2012 Ron Paul 20:57
Why do so many accept the deeply flawed principle that government bureaucrats and politicians can protect us from ourselves without totally destroying the principle of liberty?
2012 Ron Paul 20:58
Why cant people understand that war always destroys wealth and liberty?
2012 Ron Paul 20:59
Why is there so little concern for the executive order that gives the President authority to establish a kill list, including American citizens, of those targeted for assassination?
2012 Ron Paul 20:60
Why is patriotism thought to be blind loyalty to the government and the politicians who run it, rather than loyalty to the principles of liberty and support for the people? Real patriotism is a willingness to challenge the government when its wrong.
2012 Ron Paul 20:61
Why is it claimed that if people wont or cant take care of their own needs, that people and government are able to do it for them?
2012 Ron Paul 20:62
Why did we ever give the government a safe haven for initiating violence against the people?
2012 Ron Paul 20:63
Why do so many Members defend free markets, but not civil liberties?
2012 Ron Paul 20:64
Why do so many Members defend civil liberties, but not free markets? Arent they the same?
2012 Ron Paul 20:65
Why dont more defend both economic liberty and personal liberty?
2012 Ron Paul 20:66
Why are there not more individuals who seek to intellectually influence others to bring about positive changes, than those who seek power to force others to obey their commands?
2012 Ron Paul 20:67
Why does the use of religion to support a social gospel and preemptive wars, both of which require authoritarians to use violence or the threat of violence, go unchallenged? Aggression and forced redistribution of wealth has nothing to do with the teachings of the worlds great religions.
2012 Ron Paul 20:68
Why do we allow the government and the Federal Reserve to disseminate false information dealing with both economic and foreign policy?
2012 Ron Paul 20:69
Why is democracy held in such high esteem, when its the enemy of the minority and makes all rights relative to the dictates of the majority?
2012 Ron Paul 20:70
Why should anyone be surprised that Congress has no credibility since there is such a disconnect between what politicians say and what they do?
2012 Ron Paul 20:71
Is there any explanation for all the deception, the unhappiness, the fear of the future, the loss of confidence in our leaders, the distrust and the anger and frustration? Yes, there is. And theres a way to reverse these attitudes.
2012 Ron Paul 20:72
The negative perceptions are logical and a consequence of bad policies bringing about our problems. Identification of the problems and recognizing the cause allow the proper changes to come easily. We should have more trust in ourselves, less in the government.
2012 Ron Paul 20:73
Too many people have, for far too long, placed too much confidence and trust in government and not enough in themselves. Fortunately, many are now becoming aware of the seriousness of the gross mistakes of the past several decades.
2012 Ron Paul 20:74
The blame is shared by both political parties. Many Americans now are demanding to hear the plain truth of things and want the demagoguing to stop. Without this first step, solutions are impossible. Seeking the truth and finding the answers in liberty and self-reliance promote the optimism necessary for restoring prosperity. The task is not that difficult if politics doesnt get in the way. We have allowed ourselves to get into such a mess for various reasons.
2012 Ron Paul 20:75
Politicians deceive themselves as to how wealth is produced. Excessive confidence is placed in the judgment of politicians and bureaucrats. This replaces the confidence in a free society. Too many in high places of authority became convinced that only they, armed with arbitrary government power, could bring about fairness, while facilitating wealth production. This always proves to be a utopian dream and destroys wealth and liberty. It impoverishes the people, and it rewards the special interests, who end up controlling both parties. Its no surprise that much of what goes on in Washington is driven by aggressive partisanship and power-seeking, with philosophical differences being minor.
2012 Ron Paul 20:76
Economic ignorance is commonplace. Keynesianism continues to thrive; although, today, it is facing healthy and enthusiastic rebuttals. Believers in military Keynesianism and domestic Keynesianism continue to desperately promote their failed policies as the economy languishes in a deep slumber.
2012 Ron Paul 20:77
Supporters of all government edicts use humanitarian arguments to justify them. Humanitarian arguments are always used to justify government mandates related to the economy, monetary policy, foreign policy, and personal liberty. This is on purpose to make it more difficult to challenge, but initiating violence for humanitarian reasons is still violence. Good intentions are no excuse and are just as harmful as when the people use force with bad intentions. The results are always negative. The immoral use of force is the source of mans political problems. Sadly, many religious groups, secular organizations, and psychopathic authoritarians endorse government-initiated force to change the world. Even when the desired goals are well intentioned—or especially when they are well intentioned—the results are dismal. The good results sought never materialize. The new problems created require even more government force as a solution. The net result is institutionalizing government-initiated violence and morally justifying it on humanitarian grounds.
2012 Ron Paul 20:78
This is the same fundamental reason our government uses force for invading other countries at will, central economic planning at home and the regulation of personal liberty and habits of our citizens. It is rather strange that, unless one has a criminal mind and no respect for other people and their property, no one claims its permissible to go into ones neighbors house and tell him how to behave, what he can eat, smoke, and drink, or how to spend his money. Yet rarely is it asked, Why is it morally acceptable that a stranger with a badge and a gun can do the same thing in the name of law and order? Any resistance is met with brute force, fines, taxes, arrests, and even imprisonment. This is done more frequently every day without a search warrant.
2012 Ron Paul 20:79
No government monopoly over initiating violence is what we need. Restraining aggressive behavior is one thing, but legalizing a government monopoly for initiating aggression can only lead to exhausting liberty associated with chaos, anger, and the breakdown of civil society. Permitting such authority and expecting saintly behavior from the bureaucrats and the politicians is a pipe dream. We now have a standing army of armed bureaucrats in the TSA, CIA, FBI, Fish and Wildlife, FEMA, IRS, Corps of Engineers, et cetera—numbering over 100,000. Citizens are guilty until proven innocent in the unconstitutional administrative courts.
2012 Ron Paul 20:80
Government in a free society should have no authority to meddle in the social activities or in the economic transactions of individuals; nor should government meddle in the affairs of other nations. All things peaceful, even when controversial, should be permitted.
2012 Ron Paul 20:81
We must reject the notion of prior restraint in economic activity just as we do in the area of free speech and religious liberty. But even in these areas, government is starting to use a back-door approach of political correctness to regulate speech—a very dangerous trend. Since 9/11, monitoring speech on the Internet is now a problem since warrants are no longer required.
2012 Ron Paul 20:82
The proliferation of Federal crimes: the Constitution established four Federal crimes. Today, the experts cant even agree on how many Federal crimes are now on the books. They number into the thousands. No one person can comprehend the enormity of the legal system, especially of the Tax Code. Due to the ill-advised drug war and the endless Federal expansion of the Criminal Code, we have over 6 million people under correctional suspension—more than the Soviets ever had and more than any other nation today, including China. I dont understand the complacency of the Congress and the willingness to continue their obsession with passing more Federal laws. Mandatory sentencing laws associated with drug laws have compounded our prison problems.
2012 Ron Paul 20:83
The Federal Register is now 75,000 pages long. The Tax Code has 72,000 pages, and it expands every year. When will the people start shouting enough is enough and demand Congress to cease and desist?
2012 Ron Paul 20:84
What we should be doing is achieving liberty. Liberty can only be achieved when government is denied the aggressive use of force. If one seeks liberty, a precise type of government is needed. To achieve it, more than lip service is required. There are two choices available: One, a government designed to protect liberty—a natural right—as its sole objective. The people are expected to care for themselves and reject the use of any force for interfering with another persons liberty. Government is given a strictly limited authority to enforce contracts, property ownership, settle disputes, and to defend against foreign aggression; Two, a government that pretends to protect liberty but is granted power to arbitrarily use force over the people and foreign nations. Though the grant of power many times is meant to be small and limited, it inevitably metastasizes into an omnipotent political cancer.
2012 Ron Paul 20:85
This is the problem the world has suffered throughout the ages. Though meant to be limited, it nevertheless is a 100 percent sacrifice of the principle that would-be tyrants find irresistible. It is used vigorously—though incrementally and insidiously. Granting power to government officials always proves the adage that power corrupts. Once government gets a limited concession for the use of force to mold peoples habits and plan the economy, it causes a steady erosion and a steady move toward tyrannical government. Only a revolutionary spirit can reverse the process and deny the government this arbitrary use of aggression. There is no in-between.
2012 Ron Paul 20:86
Sacrificing a little liberty for imaginary safety always ends badly. Todays mess is the result of Americans accepting option number two, even though the Founders attempted to give us option number one. The results are not good. As our liberties have been eroded, our wealth has been consumed. The wealth we see today is based on debt and a foolish willingness on the part of foreigners to take our dollars for goods and services. Then they loan them back to us to perpetuate our debt system. Its amazing that it has worked for this long, but the impasse in Washington in solving our problems indicates that many are starting to understand the seriousness of this world-wide debt crisis and the dangers we face.
2012 Ron Paul 20:87
The longer this process continues, the harsher the outcome will be. The financial crisis is actually a moral crisis. Many are acknowledging that a financial crisis looms; but few understand it is, in reality, a moral crisis. Its the moral crisis that has allowed our liberties to be undermined and that has permitted the exponential growth of illegal government power. Without a clear understanding of the nature of the crisis, it will be difficult to prevent a steady march toward tyranny and the poverty that will accompany it. Ultimately, the people have to decide which form of government they want— option number one or option number two.
2012 Ron Paul 20:88
There is no other choice. Claiming there is a choice of a little tyranny is like describing pregnancy as a touch of pregnancy.
2012 Ron Paul 20:89
It is a myth to believe that a mixture of free markets and government central economic planning is a worthy compromise. What we see today is a result of that type of thinking, and the results speak for themselves.
2012 Ron Paul 20:90
A culture of violence.
2012 Ron Paul 20:91
Americans now suffer from a culture of violence. It is easy to reject the initiation of violence against ones neighbor, but its ironic that the people arbitrarily and freely anoint government officials with monopoly power to initiate violence against the American people, practically at will. Because its the government that initiates force, most people accept it as being legitimate. Those who exert the force have no sense of guilt.
2012 Ron Paul 20:92
It is believed by too many that governments are morally justified in initiating violence, supposedly to do good. They incorrectly believe that this authority has come from the consent of the people. The minority, victims of government violence, never consented to suffer the abuse of government mandates, even when dictated by the majority. Victims of TSA excesses never consented to this abuse. This attitude has given us a policy of initiating war to do good, as well.
2012 Ron Paul 20:93
It is claimed that war to prevent war for noble purposes is justified. This is similar to what we were once told that destroying a village to save a village was justified. It was said by a U.S. Secretary of State that the loss of 500,000 Iraqis, mostly children, in the 1990s as a result of American bombs and sanctions was worth it to achieve the good we brought to the people of Iraq. Look at the mess Iraq is in today.
2012 Ron Paul 20:94
Government use of force to mold social and economic behavior at home and abroad has justified individuals using force on their own terms. The fact that violence by government is seen as morally justified is the reason why violence will increase when the big financial crisis hits and becomes a political crisis, as well.
2012 Ron Paul 20:95
First, we recognize that individuals shouldnt initiate violence, then we give the authority to the government. Eventually, the immoral use of government violence, when things go badly, will be used to justify an individuals right to do the same thing. Neither the government nor individuals have the moral right to initiate violence against another, yet we are moving toward the day when both will claim this authority. If this cycle is not reversed, society will break down.
2012 Ron Paul 20:96
When needs are oppressing and conditions deteriorate and rights become relative to the demands and the whims of the majority, it is then not a great leap for individuals to take it upon themselves to use violence to get what they claim is theirs. As the economy deteriorates and the discrepancy of wealth increases, as they already are occurring, violence increases as those in need take it in their own hands to get what they believe is theirs. They will not wait for a government rescue program.
2012 Ron Paul 20:97
When government officials wield power over others to bail out the special interests, even with disastrous results to the average citizens, they feel no guilt for the harm they do. Those who take us into undeclared wars with many casualties resulting never lose sleep over the deaths and the destruction their bad decisions cause. They are convinced that what we do is morally justified, and the fact that many suffered just cant be helped. When the street criminals do the same thing, they, too, have no remorse, believing that they are only taking what is rightfully theirs.
2012 Ron Paul 20:98
All moral standards become relative, whether it is bailouts, privileges, government subsidies, or benefits for some from inflating a currency. Its all part of a process justified by a philosophy of forced redistribution of wealth.
2012 Ron Paul 20:99
Violence, or a threat of such, is the instrument required and, unfortunately, is of little concern of most Members of Congress. Some argue it is only a matter of fairness that those in need are cared for. There are two problems with this: First, the principle is used to provide a greater amount of benefits to the rich than to the poor; Second, no one seems to be concerned about whether or not its fair to those who end up paying for all the benefits. The costs are usually placed on the backs of the middle class and are hidden from the public eye.
2012 Ron Paul 20:100
Too many people believe government handouts are free, like printing money out of thin air, and theres no cost. That deception is coming to an end. The bills are coming due, and thats what the economic slowdown is all about.
2012 Ron Paul 20:101
Sadly, we have become accustomed to living with the illegitimate use of force by government. It is the tool for telling the people how to live, what to eat and drink, what to read, and how to spend their money. To develop a truly free society, the issue of initiating force must be understood and rejected. Granting to government even a small amount of force is a dangerous concession.
2012 Ron Paul 20:102
Limiting government excesses vs. a virtuous moral people.
2012 Ron Paul 20:103
Our Constitution, which was intended to limit government power and abuse, has failed. The Founders warned that a free society depends on a virtuous and moral people. The current crisis reflects that their concerns were justified.
2012 Ron Paul 20:104
Many politicians and pundits are aware of the problems we face but spend all their time in trying to reform government. The sad part is that the suggested reforms almost always lead to less freedom, and the importance of a virtuous and moral people is either ignored or not understood. The new reforms serve only to further undermine liberty. The compounding effect has given us this steady erosion of liberty and the massive expansion of debt.
2012 Ron Paul 20:105
The real question is: If it is liberty we seek, should most of the emphasis be placed on government reform or trying to understand what a virtuous and moral people means and how to promote it?
2012 Ron Paul 20:106
The Constitution has not prevented the people from demanding handouts for both rich and poor in their efforts to reform the government, while ignoring the principles of a free society. All branches of our government today are controlled by individuals who use their power to undermine liberty and enhance the welfare/warfare state, and frequently their own wealth and power.
2012 Ron Paul 20:107
If the people are unhappy with the government performance, it must be recognized that government is merely a reflection of an immoral society that rejected a moral government of constitutional limits on power and love of freedom.
2012 Ron Paul 20:108
If this is the problem, all the tinkering with thousands of pages of new laws and regulations will do nothing to solve the problem. It is self-evident that our freedoms have been severely limited and the apparent prosperity we still have is nothing more than leftover wealth from a previous time.
2012 Ron Paul 20:109
This fictitious wealth based on debt and benefits from a false trust in our currency and credit will play havoc with our society when the bills come due. This means that the full consequence of our lost liberties is yet to be felt. But that illusion is now ending. Reversing a downward spiral depends on accepting a new approach.
2012 Ron Paul 20:110
Expect the rapidly expanding home-schooling movement to play a significant role in the revolutionary reforms needed to rebuild a free society with constitutional protections. We cannot expect a Federal Government-controlled school system to provide the intellectual ammunition to combat the dangerous growth of government that threatens our liberties.
2012 Ron Paul 20:111
The Internet will provide the alternative to the government media complex that controls the news and most political propaganda. This is why its essential that the Internet remains free of government regulation.
2012 Ron Paul 20:112
Many of our religious institutions and secular organizations support greater dependency on the state by supporting war, welfare, and corporatism and ignore the need for a virtuous people.
2012 Ron Paul 20:113
I never believed that the world or our country could be made more free by politicians if the people had no desire for freedom. Under the current circumstances, the most we can hope to achieve in the political process is to use it as a podium to reach the people to alert them of the nature of the crisis and the importance of their need to assume responsibility for themselves, if it is liberty that they truly seek. Without this, a constitutionally protected free society is impossible.
2012 Ron Paul 20:114
If this is true, our individual goal in life ought to be for us to seek virtue and excellence and recognize that self-esteem and happiness only comes from using ones natural ability in the most productive manner possible according to ones own talents.
2012 Ron Paul 20:115
Productivity and creativity are the true source of personal satisfaction. Freedom, and not dependency, provides the environment needed to achieve these goals. Government cannot do this for us. It only gets in the way. When the government gets involved, the goal becomes a bailout or a subsidy, and these cannot provide a sense of personal achievement.
2012 Ron Paul 20:116
Achieving legislative power and political influence should not be our goal. Most of the change that is to come will not come from the politicians but, rather, from individuals, family, friends, intellectual leaders, and our religious institutions. The solution can only come from rejecting the use of coercion, compulsion, government commands, and aggressive force to mold social and economic behavior. Without accepting these restraints, inevitably, the consensus will be to allow the government to mandate economic equality and obedience to the politicians who gained power and promote an environment that smothers the freedoms of everyone.
2012 Ron Paul 20:117
It is then that the responsible individuals who seek excellence and self-esteem by being self-reliant and productive become the victims.
2012 Ron Paul 20:118
In conclusion, what are the greatest dangers that the American people face today and impede the goal of a free society? There are five.
2012 Ron Paul 20:119
The continuous attack on our civil liberties which threatens the rule of law and our ability to resist the rush of tyranny.
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Number two: violent anti-Americanism that has engulfed the world.
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Because the phenomenon of blow-back is not understood or denied, our foreign policy is destined to keep us involved in many wars that we have no business being in. National bankruptcy and a greater threat to our national security will result.
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Number three: the ease in which we go to war, without a declaration by Congress, but accepting international authority from the U.N. or NATO even for preemptive wars, otherwise known as aggression.
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Number four: a financial political crisis as a consequence of excessive debt, unfunded liabilities, spending, bailouts, and gross discrepancy in wealth distribution going from the middle class to the rich. The danger of central economic planning by the Federal Reserve must be understood.
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Number five: world government taking over local and U.S. sovereignty by getting involved in the issues of war, welfare, trade, banking, a world currency, taxes, property, and private ownership of guns must be addressed.
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Happily, there is an answer for these very dangerous trends. What a wonderful world it would be if everyone accepted the simple moral premise of rejecting all acts of aggression. The retort to such a suggestion is always: its too simplistic, too idealistic, impractical, naive, utopian, dangerous, and unrealistic to strive for such an ideal.
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The answer to that is that for thousands of years the acceptance of government force, to rule over the people, at the sacrifice of liberty, was considered moral and the only available option for achieving peace and prosperity. What can be more utopian than that myth—considering the results, especially looking at the state-sponsored killing by nearly every government during the 20th century, estimated to be in the hundreds of millions of people. Its time to reconsider this grant of authority to the state.
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No good has ever come from granting monopoly power to the state to use aggression against the people to arbitrarily mold human behavior. Such power, when left unchecked, becomes the seed of an ugly tyranny. This method of governance has been adequately tested, and the results are in: reality dictates we try liberty.
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The idealism of nonaggression and rejecting the offensive use of force should be tried. The idealism of government-sanctioned violence has been abused throughout history and is the primary source of poverty and war. The theory of a society being based on individual freedom has been around for a long time. It is time to take a bold step and actually permit it by advancing this cause, rather than taking a step backwards as some would like us to do today.
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Today the principle of habeas corpus, established when King John signed the Magna Carta in 1215, is under attack in our own government. Theres every reason to believe that with a renewed effort, with the use of the Internet, we can instead advance the cause of liberty by spreading an uncensored message that will serve to rein in government authority and challenge the obsession with war and welfare.
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What Im talking about is a system of government guided by the moral principles of peace and tolerance. The Founders were convinced that a free society could not exist without a moral people. Just writing rules wont work if the people choose to ignore them. Today the rule of law written in the Constitution has little meaning for most Americans, especially those who work in Washington, D.C.
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Benjamin Franklin claimed only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. John Adams concurred: Our Constitution was made for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other. A moral people must reject all violence in an effort to mold peoples beliefs or habits. A society that boos or ridicules the Golden Rule is not a moral society. All great religions endorse the Golden Rule. The same moral standards that individuals are required to follow should apply to all government officials. They cannot be exempt. The ultimate solution is not in the hands of the government. The solution falls on each and every individual, with guidance from family, friends, and communities.
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The number one responsibility for each of us is to change ourselves, with hope that others will follow. This is of greater importance than working on changing the government; that is secondary to promoting a virtuous society. If we can achieve this, then the government will change.
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It doesnt mean that political action or holding office has no value. At times it does nudge policy in the right direction. But what is true is that when seeking office is done for personal aggrandizement, money or power, it becomes useless if not harmful. When political action is taken for the right reasons, its easy to understand why compromise should be avoided. It also becomes clear why progress is best achieved by working with coalitions, which bring people together, without anyone sacrificing his principles.
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Political action, to be truly beneficial, must be directed toward changing the hearts and minds of the people, recognizing that its the virtue and morality of the people that allow liberty to flourish.
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The Constitution or more laws per se have no value if the peoples attitudes arent changed.
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To achieve liberty and peace, two powerful human emotions have to be overcome. Number one is envy, which leads to hate and class warfare. Number two is intolerance, which leads to bigoted and judgmental policies. These emotions must be replaced with a much better understanding of love, compassion, tolerance, and free market economics. Freedom, when understood, brings people together. When tried, freedom is popular.
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The problem we have faced over the years is that economic interventionists are swayed by envy, whereas social interventionists are swayed by intolerance of habits and lifestyles. The misunderstanding that tolerance is an endorsement of certain activities motivates many to legislate moral standards, which should only be set by individuals making their own choices. Both sides use force to deal with these mis-placed emotions. Both are authoritarians. Neither endorses voluntarism. Both views ought to be rejected.
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I have come to one firm conviction after these many years of trying to figure out the plain truth of things: the best chance for achieving peace and prosperity for the maximum number of people worldwide is to pursue the cause of liberty. If you find this to be a worthwhile message, spread it throughout the land.
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I yield back the balance of my time.
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ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE SPEAKER PRO TEMPORE The SPEAKER pro tempore. Occupants of the gallery are reminded that it is inappropriate to express approval or disapproval of the proceedings of the House.