Volume 2003 – The Book of Ron Paul

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 1


January 7, 2003
Stop Identity Theft – Make Social Security Numbers Confidential

2003 Ron Paul 1:1
Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, today I introduce the Identity Theft Prevention Act. This act protects the American people from government-mandated uniform identifiers that facilitate private crime as well as the abuse of liberty. The major provision of the Identity Theft Prevention Act halts the practice of using the Social Security number as an identifier by requiring the Social Security Administration to issue all Americans new Social Security numbers within five years after the enactment of the bill. These new numbers will be the sole legal property of the recipient and the Social Security administration shall be forbidden to divulge the numbers for any purposes not related to Social Security administration. Social Security numbers issued before implementation of this bill shall no longer be considered valid federal identifiers. Of course, the Social Security Administration shall be able to use an individual’s original Social Security number to ensure efficient administration of the Social Security system.

2003 Ron Paul 1:2
Mr. Speaker, Congress has a moral responsibility to address this problem because it was Congress which transformed the Social Security number into a national identifier. Thanks to Congress, today no American can get a job, open a bank account, get a professional license, or even get a driver’s license without presenting their Social Security number. So widespread has the use of the Social Security number become that a member of my staff had to produce a Social Security number in order to get a fishing license!

2003 Ron Paul 1:3
One of the most disturbing abuses of the Social Security number is the congressionally-authorized rule forcing parents to get a Social Security number for their newborn children in order to claim them as dependents. Forcing parents to register their children with the state is more like something out of the nightmares of George Orwell than the dreams of a free republic which inspired this nation’s founders.

2003 Ron Paul 1:4
Congressionally-mandated use of the Social Security number as an identifier facilitates the horrendous crime of identity theft. Thanks to Congress, an unscrupulous person may simply obtain someone’s Social Security number in order to access that person’s bank accounts, credit cards, and other financial assets. Many Americans have lost their life savings and had their credit destroyed as a result of identity theft- yet the federal government continues to encourage such crimes by mandating use of the Social Security number as a uniform ID!

2003 Ron Paul 1:5
This act also forbids the federal government from creating national ID cards or establishing any identifiers for the purpose of investigating, monitoring, overseeing, or regulating private transactions between American citizens, as well as repealing those sections of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 that require the Department of Health and Human Services to establish a uniform standard health identifier. By putting an end to government-mandated uniform IDs, the Identity Theft Prevention Act will prevent millions of Americans from having their liberty, property and privacy violated by private-and-public sector criminals.

2003 Ron Paul 1:6
In addition to forbidding the federal government from creating national identifiers, this legislation forbids the federal government from blackmailing states into adopting uniform standard identifiers by withholding federal funds. One of the most onerous practices of Congress is the use of federal funds illegitimately taken from the American people to bribe states into obeying federal dictates.

2003 Ron Paul 1:7
Mr. Speaker, of all the invasions of privacy proposed in the past decade, perhaps the most onerous is the attempt to assign every American a “unique health identifier” — an identifier which could be used to create a national database containing the medical history of all Americans. As an OB/GYN with more than 30 years in private practice, I know the importance of preserving the sanctity of the physician-patient relationship. Oftentimes, effective treatment depends on a patient’s ability to place absolute trust in his or her doctor. What will happen to that trust when patients know that any and all information given to their doctor will be placed in a government accessible database? Some members of Congress may claim that the federal monitoring of all Americans will enhance security. However, the fact is that creating a surveillance state will divert valuable resources away from investigating legitimate security threats into spying on innocent Americans, thus reducing security. The American people would be better served if the government focused attention on ensuring our borders are closed to potential terrorists instead of coming up with new ways to violate the rights of American citizens.

2003 Ron Paul 1:8
Other members of Congress will claim that the federal government needs the power to monitor Americans in order to allow the government to operate more efficiently. I would remind my colleagues that in a constitutional republic, the people are never asked to sacrifice their liberties to make the job of government officials easier. We are here to protect the freedom of the American people, not to make privacy invasion more efficient.

2003 Ron Paul 1:9
Mr. Speaker, while I do not question the sincerity of those members who suggest that Congress can ensure that citizens’ rights are protected through legislation restricting access to personal information, the only effective privacy protection is to forbid the federal government from mandating national identifiers. Legislative “privacy protections” are inadequate to protect the liberty of Americans for several reasons:

2003 Ron Paul 1:10
First, it is simply common sense that repealing those federal laws that promote identity theft is more effective in protecting the public than expanding the power of the federal police force. Federal punishment of identity thieves provides cold comfort to those who have suffered financial losses and the destruction of their good reputation as a result of identity theft.

2003 Ron Paul 1:11
Federal laws are not only ineffective in stopping private criminals, but have not even stopped unscrupulous government officials from accessing personal information. After all, laws purporting to restrict the use of personal information did not stop the well-publicized violations of privacy by IRS officials or the FBI abuses by the Clinton and Nixon administrations.

2003 Ron Paul 1:12
Just last month, thousands of active-duty soldiers and veterans had their personal information stolen, putting them at risk of identity theft. Imagine the dangers if thieves are able to obtain the universal identifier, and other personal information, of millions of Americans simply by breaking, or hacking, into one government facility or one government database?

2003 Ron Paul 1:13
Second, the federal government has been creating proprietary interests in private information for certain state-favored special interests. Perhaps the most outrageous example of phony privacy protection is the “medical privacy” regulation, which allows medical researchers, certain business interests, and law enforcement officials’ access to health care information, in complete disregard of the Fifth Amendment and the wishes of individual patients! Obviously, “privacy protection” laws have proven greatly inadequate to protect personal information when the government is the one providing or seeking the information.

2003 Ron Paul 1:14
The primary reason why any action short of the repeal of laws authorizing privacy violations is insufficient is because the federal government lacks constitutional authority to force citizens to adopt a universal identifier for health care, employment, or any other reason. Any federal action that oversteps constitutional limitations violates liberty because it ratifies the principle that the federal government, not the Constitution, is the ultimate judge of its own jurisdiction over the people. The only effective protection of the rights of citizens is for Congress to follow Thomas Jefferson’s advice and “bind (the federal government) down with the chains of the Constitution.”

2003 Ron Paul 1:15
Mr. Speaker, those members who are not persuaded by the moral and constitutional reasons for embracing the Identity Theft Prevention Act should consider the opposition of the American people toward national identifiers. The overwhelming public opposition to the various “Know-Your-Customer” schemes, the attempt to turn driver’s licenses into National ID cards, as well as the numerous complaints over the ever-growing uses of the Social Security number, show that American people want Congress to stop invading their privacy. Furthermore, according to a survey by the Gallup company, 91 percent of the American people oppose forcing Americans to obtain a universal health ID. Several other recent polls show most Americans remain skeptical that a national ID card would enhance their security or preserve their liberty.

2003 Ron Paul 1:16
In conclusion, Mr. Speaker, I once again call on my colleagues to join me in putting an end to the federal government’s unconstitutional use of national identifiers to monitor the actions of private citizens. National identifiers threaten all Americans by exposing them to the threat of identity theft by private criminals and abuse of their liberties by public criminals, while diverting valuable law enforcement resources away from addressing real threats to public safety. In addition, national identifiers are incompatible with a limited, constitutional government. I, therefore, hope my colleagues will join my efforts to protect the freedom of their constituents by supporting the Identity Theft Prevention Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 2


January 8, 2003

2003 Ron Paul 2:1
 Mr. Speaker, I rise today to introduce a bill expressing the sense of the Congress that the United States should not rejoin the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

2003 Ron Paul 2:2
Mr. Speaker, in 1984 President Ronald Reagan withdrew the United States from membership in that UNESCO, citing egregious financial mismanagement, blatant anti-Americanism, and UNESCO’s general anti-freedom policies. President Reagan was correct in identifying UNESCO as an organization that does not act in America’s interest, and he was correct in questioning why the United States should fund 25 percent of UNESCO’s budget for that privilege.

2003 Ron Paul 2:3
Those calling for the United States to rejoin UNESCO claim that the organization has undertaken fundamental reforms and therefore the United States should re-join. It is strange that in the 18 years since the United States left UNESCO, we only started reading about the beginnings of reform in the year 2000. Are we to believe that after nearly two decades of no change in UNESCO’s way of mismanaging itself things have changed so much in just two years? Is it worth spending $60 million per year on an organization with such a terrible history of waste, corruption, and anti-Americanism?

2003 Ron Paul 2:4
Mr. Speaker, even if UNESCO has been “reforming” its finances over the past two years, its programmatic activities are still enough to cause great concern among those of us who value American sovereignty and honor our Constitution. Consider the following as a partial list of UNESCO’s ongoing highly questionable activities:

2003 Ron Paul 2:5
UNESCO meddles in the education affairs of its member-countries and has sought to construct a U.N.-based school curriculum for American schools.

2003 Ron Paul 2:6
UNESCO has been fully supportive of the United Nations’ Population Fund (UNFPA) in its assistance to China’s brutal coercive population control program.

2003 Ron Paul 2:7
UNESCO has designated 47 U.N. Biosphere Reserves in the United States covering more than 70 million acres, without Congressional consultation.

2003 Ron Paul 2:8
UNESCO effectively bypasses Congressional authority to manage federal lands, by establishing management policies without Congressional consultation of approval.

2003 Ron Paul 2:9
Mr. Speaker, I hope all members of this body will join me in opposing renewed U.S. membership in the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization by co-sponsoring this “Say NO to UNESCO” Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 3


January 8, 2003
Introduction of the Social Security Preservation Act

2003 Ron Paul 3:1
Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, I rise to protect the integrity of the Social Security trust fund by introducing the Social Security Preservation Act. The Social Security Preservation Act is a rather simple bill which states that all monies raised by the Social Security trust fund will be spent in payments to beneficiaries, with excess receipts invested in interest-bearing certificates of deposit. This will help keep Social Security trust fund monies from being diverted to other programs, as well as allow the fund to grow by providing for investment in interest-bearing instruments.

2003 Ron Paul 3:2
The Social Security Preservation Act ensures that the government will keep its promises to America’s seniors that taxes collected for Social Security will be used for Social Security. When the government taxes Americans to fund Social Security, it promises the American people that the money will be there for them when they retire. Congress has a moral obligation to keep that promise.

2003 Ron Paul 3:3
The return of massive federal deficits, and the accompanying pressure for massive new raids on the trust fund, make it more important than ever that Congress protect the trust fund from big spending, pork-barrel politics. I call upon all my colleagues, regardless of which proposal for long-term Social Security reform they support, to stand up for America’s seniors by cosponsoring the Social Security Preservation Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 4


January 9, 2003
Restoring the Second Amendment

2003 Ron Paul 4:1
Mr. Speaker, I rise to restore the right the founding fathers saw as the guarantee of every other right by introducing the Second Amendment Protection Act. This legislation reverses the steady erosion of the right to keep and bear arms by repealing unconstitutional laws that allow power-hungry federal bureaucrats to restrict the rights of law-abiding gun owners.

2003 Ron Paul 4:2
Specifically, my legislation repeals the five-day waiting period and the “instant” background check, which enables the federal government to compile a database of every gun owner in America. My legislation also repeals the misnamed ban on “semi-automatic” weapons, which bans entire class of firearms for no conceivable reason beside the desire of demagogic politicians to appear tough on crime. Finally, my bill amends the Gun Control Act of 1968 by deleting the “sporting purposes” test, which allows the Treasury Secretary to infringe on second amendment rights by classifying a firearm (handgun, rifle, shotgun) as a “destructive device” simply because the Secretary believes the gun to be “non-sporting.”

2003 Ron Paul 4:3
Thomas Jefferson said “The constitutions of most of our States assert that all power is inherent in the people; ...that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed.”  Jefferson, and all of the Founders, would be horrified by the proliferation of unconstitutional legislation that prevents law-abiding Americans form exercising their right and duty to keep and bear arms. I hope my colleagues will join me in upholding the Founders’ vision for a free society by cosponsoring the Second Amendment Restoration Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 5


January 29, 2003
Sorry, Mr. Franklin, “We’re All Democrats Now”

2003 Ron Paul 5:1
Introduction At the close of the Constitutional Convention in 1787, Benjamin Franklin told an inquisitive citizen that the delegates to the Constitutional Convention gave the people “a Republic, if you can keep it.” We should apologize to Mr. Franklin. It is obvious that the Republic is gone, for we are wallowing in a pure democracy against which the Founders had strongly warned.

2003 Ron Paul 5:2
Madison, the father of the Constitution, could not have been more explicit in his fear and concern for democracies. “Democracies,” he said, “have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention; have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property; and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their death.”

2003 Ron Paul 5:3
If Madison’s assessment was correct, it behooves those of us in Congress to take note and decide, indeed, whether the Republic has vanished, when it occurred, and exactly what to expect in the way of “turbulence, contention, and violence.” And above all else, what can we and what will we do about it?

2003 Ron Paul 5:4
The turbulence seems self-evident. Domestic welfare programs are not sustainable and do not accomplish their stated goals. State and federal spending and deficits are out of control. Terrorism and uncontrollable fear undermine our sense of well-being.  Hysterical reactions to dangers not yet seen prompt the people- at the prodding of the politicians- to readily sacrifice their liberties in vain hope that someone else will take care of them and guarantee their security. With these obvious signs of a failed system all around us, there seems to be more determination than ever to antagonize the people of the world by pursuing a world empire. Nation building, foreign intervention, preemptive war, and global government drive our foreign policy. There seems to be complete aversion to defending the Republic and the Constitution that established it.

2003 Ron Paul 5:5
The Founders clearly understood the dangers of a democracy. Edmund Randolph of Virginia described the effort to deal with the issue at the Constitutional Convention: “The general object was to produce a cure for the evils under which the United States labored; that in tracing these evils to their origins, every man had found it in the turbulence and follies of democracy.” 

2003 Ron Paul 5:6
These strongly held views regarding the evils of democracy and the benefits of a Constitutional Republic were shared by all the Founders. For them, a democracy meant centralized power, controlled by majority opinion, which was up for grabs and therefore completely arbitrary.

2003 Ron Paul 5:7
In contrast, a Republic was decentralized and representative in nature, with the government’s purpose strictly limited by the Constitution to the protection of liberty and private property ownership. They believed the majority should never be able to undermine this principle and that the government must be tightly held in check by constitutional restraints. The difference between a democracy and a republic was simple. Would we live under the age-old concept of the rule of man or the enlightened rule of law?

2003 Ron Paul 5:8
A constitution in and by itself does not guarantee liberty in a republican form of government. Even a perfect constitution with this goal in mind is no better than the moral standards and desires of the people. Although the United States Constitution was by far the best ever written for the protection of liberty, with safeguards against the dangers of a democracy, it too was flawed from the beginning. Instead of guaranteeing liberty equally for all people, the authors themselves yielded to the democratic majority’s demands that they compromise on the issue of slavery. This mistake, plus others along the way, culminated in a Civil War that surely could have been prevented with clearer understanding and a more principled approach to the establishment of a constitutional republic.

2003 Ron Paul 5:9
Subsequently, the same urge to accommodate majority opinion, while ignoring the principles of individual liberty, led to some other serious errors. Even amending the Constitution in a proper fashion to impose alcohol prohibition turned out to be a disaster. Fortunately this was rectified after a short time with its repeal.

2003 Ron Paul 5:10
But today, the American people accept drug prohibition, a policy as damaging to liberty as alcohol prohibition. A majority vote in Congress has been enough to impose this very expensive and failed program on the American people, without even bothering to amend the Constitution. It has been met with only minimal but, fortunately, growing dissent. For the first 150 years of our history, when we were much closer to being a true republic, there were no federal laws dealing with this serious medical problem of addiction.

2003 Ron Paul 5:11
The ideas of democracy, not the principles of liberty, were responsible for passage of the 16 th Amendment. It imposed the income tax on the American people and helped to usher in the modern age of the welfare/warfare state. Unfortunately, the 16 th Amendment has not been repealed, as was the 18 th .  As long as the 16 th Amendment is in place, the odds are slim that we can restore a constitutional republic dedicated to liberty. The personal income tax is more than symbolic of a democracy; it is a predictable consequence.

2003 Ron Paul 5:12
  Transition to Democracy

2003 Ron Paul 5:13
The transition from republic to democracy was gradual and insidious. It seeds were sown early in our history. In many ways, the Civil War and its aftermath laid the foundation for the acute erosion that took place over the entire 20 th century. Chronic concern about war and economic downturns- events caused by an intrusive government’s failure to follow the binding restraints of the Constitution- allowed majority demands to supersede the rights of the minority. By the end of the 20 th century, majority opinion had become the determining factor in all that government does. The rule of law was cast aside, leaving the Constitution a shell of what it once was- a Constitution with rules that guaranteed a republic with limited and regional government and protection of personal liberty. The marketplace, driven by voluntary cooperation, private property ownership, and sound money was severely undermined with the acceptance of the principles of a true democracy.

2003 Ron Paul 5:14
Unfortunately, too many people confuse the democratic elections of leaders of a republic for democracy by accepting the rule of majority opinion in all affairs. For majorities to pick leaders is one thing. It is something quite different for majorities to decide what rights are, to redistribute property, to tell people how to manage their personal lives, and to promote undeclared, unconstitutional wars.

2003 Ron Paul 5:15
The majority is assumed to be in charge today and can do whatever it pleases. If the majority has not yet sanctioned some desired egregious action demanded by special interests, the propaganda machine goes into operation, and the pollsters relay the results back to the politicians who are seeking legitimacy in their endeavors. The rule of law and the Constitution have become irrelevant, and we live by constant polls.

2003 Ron Paul 5:16
This trend toward authoritarian democracy was tolerated because, unlike a military dictatorship, it was done in the name of benevolence, fairness, and equity. The pretense of love and compassion by those who desire to remold society and undermine the Constitution convinced the recipients, and even the victims, of its necessity.  Since it was never a precipitous departure from the republic, the gradual erosion of liberty went unnoticed.

2003 Ron Paul 5:17
But it is encouraging that more and more citizens are realizing just how much has been lost by complacency. The resolution to the problems we face as a result of this profound transition to pure democracy will be neither quick nor painless. This transition has occurred even though the word “democracy” does not appear in the Constitution or in the Declaration of Independence, and the Founders explicitly denounced it.

2003 Ron Paul 5:18
Over the last hundred years, the goal of securing individual liberties within the framework of a constitutional republic has been replaced with incessant talk of democracy and fairness.

2003 Ron Paul 5:19
Rallying support for our ill-advised participation in World War I, Wilson spoke glowingly of “making the world safe for democracy,” and never mentioned national security. This theme has, to this day, persisted in all our foreign affairs.  Neo-conservatives now brag of their current victories in promoting what they call “Hard Wilsonism.”

2003 Ron Paul 5:20
A true defense of self-determination for all people, the necessary ingredient of a free society, is ignored. Self-determination implies separation of smaller government from the larger entities that we witnessed in the breakup of the Soviet Union. This notion contradicts the goal of pure democracy and world government. A single world government is the ultimate goal of all social egalitarians who are unconcerned with liberty.

2003 Ron Paul 5:21
Current Understanding Today the concepts of rights and property ownership are completely arbitrary. Congress, the courts, presidents and bureaucrats arbitrarily “legislate” on a daily basis, seeking only the endorsement of the majority. Although the republic was designed to protect the minority against the dictates of the majority, today we find the reverse. The republic is no longer recognizable.

2003 Ron Paul 5:22
Supporters of democracy are always quick to point out one of the perceived benefits of this system is the redistribution of wealth by government force to the poor.  Although this may be true in limited fashion, the champions of this system never concern themselves with the victims from whom the wealth is stolen. The so-called benefits are short-lived, because democracy consumes wealth with little concern for those who produce it. Eventually the programs cannot be funded, and the dependency that has developed precipitates angry outcries for even more “fairness.” Since reversing the tide against liberty is so difficult, this unworkable system inevitably leads to various forms of tyranny.  

2003 Ron Paul 5:23
As our republic crumbles, voices of protest grow louder. The central government becomes more authoritarian with each crisis. As the quality of education plummets, the role of the federal government is expanded. As the quality of medical care collapses, the role of the federal government in medicine is greatly increased. Foreign policy failures precipitate cries for more intervention abroad and an even greater empire. Cries for security grow louder, and concern for liberty languishes.

2003 Ron Paul 5:24
Attacks on our homeland prompt massive increase in the bureaucracy to protect us from all dangers, seen and imagined.   The prime goal and concern of the Founders, the protection of liberty, is ignored. Those expressing any serious concern for personal liberty are condemned for their self-centeredness and their lack of patriotism.

2003 Ron Paul 5:25
Even if we could defeat al Qaeda- which surely is a worthwhile goal- it would do little to preserve our liberties, while ignoring the real purpose of our government. Another enemy would surely replace it, just as the various groups of barbarians never left the Roman Empire alone once its internal republican structure collapsed.

2003 Ron Paul 5:26
Democracy Subverts Liberty and Undermines Prosperity Once it becomes acceptable to change the rules by majority vote, there are no longer any limits on the power of the government. When the Constitution can be subverted by mere legislative votes, executive orders or judicial decrees, constitutional restraints on the government are eliminated. This process was rare in the early years of our history, but now it is routine.

2003 Ron Paul 5:27
Democracy is promoted in the name of fairness in an effort to help some special-interest group gain a benefit that it claims it needs or is entitled to. If only one small group were involved, nothing would come of the demands. But coalitions develop, and the various groups ban together to form a majority to vote themselves all those things that they expect others to provide for them.

2003 Ron Paul 5:28
Although the motivating factor is frequently the desire for the poor to better themselves through the willingness of others to sacrifice for what they see as good cause, the process is doomed to failure. Governments are inefficient and the desired goals are rarely achieved. Administrators, who benefit, perpetuate the programs. Wealthy elites learn to benefit from the system in a superior fashion over the poor, because they know how to skim the cream off the top of all the programs designed for the disadvantaged. They join the various groups in producing the majority vote needed to fund their own special projects.

2003 Ron Paul 5:29
Public financing of housing, for instance, benefits builders, bureaucrats, insurance companies, and financial institutions, while the poor end up in drug-infested, crime-ridden housing projects. For the same reason, not only do business leaders not object to the system, but they also become strong supporters of welfare programs and foreign aid.   Big business strongly supports programs like the Export/Import Bank, the IMF, the World Bank, farm subsidies, and military adventurism. Tax-code revisions and government contracts mean big profits for those who are well-connected. Concern for individual liberty is pushed to the bottom of the priority list for both the poor and rich welfare recipients.

2003 Ron Paul 5:30
Prohibitions placed in the Constitution against programs that serve special interests are the greatest threat to the current system of democracy under which we operate. In order for the benefits to continue, politicians must reject the rule of law and concern themselves only with the control of majority opinion. Sadly, that is the job of almost all politicians. It is clearly the motivation behind the millions spent on constant lobbying, as well as the billions spent on promoting the right candidates in each election. Those who champion liberty are rarely heard from. The media, banking, insurance, airlines, transportations, financial institutions, government employees, the military-industrial complex, the educational system, and the medical community are all dependent on government appropriations, resulting in a high-stakes system of government.

2003 Ron Paul 5:31
Democracy encourages the mother of all political corruption- the use of political money to buy influence. If the dollars spent in this effort represent the degree to which democracy has won out over the rule of law and the Constitution, it looks like the American republic is left wanting. Billions are spent on the endeavor.

2003 Ron Paul 5:32
Money in politics is the key to implementing policy and swaying democratic majorities. It is seen by most Americans, and rightly so, as a negative and a danger. Yet the response, unfortunately, is only more of the same. More laws tinkering with freedom of expression are enacted, in hopes that regulating sums of private money thrown into the political system will curtail the abuse. But failing to understand the cause of the problem, lack of respect for the Constitution, and obsession with legislative relativity dictated by the majority serve only to further undermine the rule of law.

2003 Ron Paul 5:33
We were adequately warned about the problem. Democracies lead to chaos, violence and bankruptcy. The demands of the majority are always greater than taxation alone can provide. Therefore, control over the monetary and banking system is required for democracies to operate. It was no accident in 1913, when the dramatic shift toward a democracy became pronounced, that the Federal Reserve was established. A personal income tax was imposed as well. At the same time, popular election of Senators was instituted, and our foreign policy became aggressively interventionist. Even with an income tax, the planners for war and welfare (a guns and butter philosophy) knew that it would become necessary to eliminate restraints on the printing of money. Private counterfeiting was a heinous crime, but government counterfeit and fractional-reserve banking were required to seductively pay for the majority’s demands. It is for this reason that democracies always bring about currency debasement through inflation of the money supply.

2003 Ron Paul 5:34
Some of the planners of today clearly understand the process and others, out of ignorance, view central-bank money creation as a convenience with little danger. That’s where they are wrong. Even though the wealthy and the bankers support paper money- believing they know how to protect against its ill effects- many of them are eventually dragged down in the economic downturns that always develop.

2003 Ron Paul 5:35
It’s not a new era that they have created for us today, but more of the same endured throughout history by so many other nations. The belief that democratic demands can be financed by deficits, credit creation and taxation is based on false hope and failure to see how it contributes to the turbulence as the democracy collapses.

2003 Ron Paul 5:36
Once a nation becomes a democracy, the whole purpose of government changes. Instead of the government’s goal being that of guaranteeing liberty, equal justice, private property, and voluntary exchange, the government embarks on the impossible task of achieving economic equality, micromanaging the economy, and protecting citizens from themselves and all their activities. The destruction of the wealth-building process, which is inherent in a free society, is never anticipated. Once it’s realized that it has been undermined, it is too late to easily reverse the attacks against limited government and personal liberty.

2003 Ron Paul 5:37
Democracy, by necessity, endorses special-interest interventionism, inflationism, and corporatism. In order to carry out the duties now expected of the government, power must be transferred from the citizens to the politicians. The only thing left is to decide which group or groups have the greatest influence over the government officials. As the wealth of the nation dwindles, competition between the special-interest groups grows more intense and becomes the dominant goal of political action. Restoration of liberty, the market and personal responsibility are of little interest and are eventually seen as impractical.

2003 Ron Paul 5:38
Power and public opinion become crucial factors in determining the direction of all government expenditures. Although both major parties now accept the principles of rule by majority and reject the rule of law, the beneficiaries for each party are generally different- although they frequently overlap. Propaganda, demagoguery, and control of the educational system and the media are essential to directing the distribution of the loot the government steals from those who are still honestly working for a living.

2003 Ron Paul 5:39
The greater problem is that nearly everyone receives some government benefit, and at the same time contributes to the Treasury. Most hope they will get back more than they pay in and, therefore, go along with the firmly entrenched system. Others, who understand and would choose to opt out and assume responsibility for themselves, aren’t allowed to and are forced to participate. The end only comes with a collapse of the system, since a gradual and logical reversal of the inexorable march toward democratic socialism is unachievable.

2003 Ron Paul 5:40
Soviet-style communism dramatically collapsed once it was recognized that it could no longer function and a better system replaced it. It became no longer practical to pursue token reforms like those that took place over its 70-year history.

2003 Ron Paul 5:41
The turmoil and dangers of pure democracy are known. We should get prepared.  But it will be the clarity with which we plan its replacement that determines the amount of pain and suffering endured during the transition to another system. Hopefully, the United States Congress and other government leaders will come to realize the seriousness of our current situation and replace the business-as-usual attitude, regardless of political demands and growing needs of a boisterous majority.  Simply stated, our wealth is running out, and the affordability of democracy is coming to an end.

2003 Ron Paul 5:42
History reveals that once majorities can vote themselves largesse, the system is destined to collapse from within. But in order to maintain the special-interest system for as long as possible, more and more power must be given to an ever-expanding central government-which of course only makes matters worse.

2003 Ron Paul 5:43
The economic shortcomings of such a system are easily understood. What is too often ignored is that the flip side of delivering power to government is the loss of liberty to the individual. This loss of liberty causes exactly what the government doesn’t want- less productive citizens who cannot pay taxes.

2003 Ron Paul 5:44
Even before 9/11, these trends were in place and proposals were abundant for restraining liberty. Since 9/11, the growth of centralized government and the loss of privacy and personal freedoms have significantly accelerated.

2003 Ron Paul 5:45
It is in dealing with homeland defense and potential terrorist attacks that the domestic social programs and the policy of foreign intervention are coming together and precipitating a rapid expansion of the state and erosion of liberty. Like our social welfarism at home, our foreign meddling and empire building abroad are a consequence of our becoming a pure democracy.

2003 Ron Paul 5:46
Foreign Affairs and Democracy The dramatic shift away from republicanism that occurred in 1913, as expected, led to a bold change of purpose in foreign affairs. The goal of “making the world safe for democracy” was forcefully put forth by President Wilson. Protecting national security had become too narrow a goal and selfish in purpose. An obligation for spreading democracy became a noble obligation backed by a moral commitment, every bit as utopian as striving for economic equality in an egalitarian society here at home. 

2003 Ron Paul 5:47
With the growing affection for democracy, it was no giant leap to assume that majority opinion should mold personal behavior. It was no mere coincidence that the 18 th Amendment- alcohol prohibition- was passed in 1919.

2003 Ron Paul 5:48
Ever since 1913, all our presidents have endorsed meddling in the internal affairs of other nations and have given generous support to the notion that a world government would facilitate the goals of democratic welfare or socialism. On a daily basis, we hear that we must be prepared to spend our money and use our young people to police the entire world in order to spread democracy. Whether in Venezuela or Columbia, Afghanistan or Pakistan, Iraq or Iran, Korea or Vietnam, our intervention is always justified with a tone of moral arrogance that “it’s for their own good.”

2003 Ron Paul 5:49
Our policymakers promote democracy as a cure-all for the various complex problems of the world. Unfortunately, the propaganda machine is able to hide the real reasons for our empire building. “Promoting democracy” overseas merely becomes a slogan for doing things that the powerful and influential strive to do for their own benefit. To get authority for these overseas pursuits, all that is required of the government is that the majority be satisfied with the stated goals- no matter how self-serving they may be. The rule of law, that is, constitutional restraint, is ignored. But as successful as the policy may be on the short run and as noble as it may be portrayed, it is a major contributing factor to the violence and chaos that eventually come from pure democracy.

2003 Ron Paul 5:50
There is abundant evidence that the pretense of spreading democracy contradicts the very policies we are pursuing. We preach about democratic elections, but we are only too willing to accept some for-the-moment friendly dictator who actually overthrew a democratically elected leader or to interfere in some foreign election.

2003 Ron Paul 5:51
This is the case with Pakistan’s Mushariff. For a temporary alliance, he reaps hundreds of millions of dollars, even though strong evidence exists that the Pakistanis have harbored and trained al Qaeda terrorists, that they have traded weapons with North Korea, and that they possess weapons of mass destruction. No one should be surprised that the Arabs are confused by our overtures of friendship. We have just recently promised $28 billion to Turkey to buy their support for Persian Gulf War II.

2003 Ron Paul 5:52
Our support of Saudi Arabia, in spite of its ties to al Qaeda through financing and training, is totally ignored by those obsessed with going to war against Iraq. Saudi Arabia is the furthest thing from a democracy. As a matter of fact, if democratic elections were permitted, the Saudi government would be overthrown by a bin Laden ally.

2003 Ron Paul 5:53
Those who constantly preach global government and democracy ought to consider the outcome of their philosophy in a hypothetical Mid-East regional government. If these people were asked which country in this region possesses weapons of mass destruction, has a policy of oppressive occupation, and constantly defies UN Security council resolutions, the vast majority would overwhelmingly name Israel. Is this ludicrous? No, this is what democracy is all about and what can come from a one-man, one-vote philosophy.

2003 Ron Paul 5:54
U.S. policy supports the overthrow of the democratically elected Chavez government in Venezuela, because we don’t like the economic policy it pursues. We support a military takeover as long as the new dictator will do as we tell him.

2003 Ron Paul 5:55
There is no creditability in our contention that we really want to impose democracy on other nations. Yet promoting democracy is the public justification for our foreign intervention.  It sounds so much nicer than saying we’re going to risk the lives of our young people and massively tax our citizens to secure the giant oil reserves in Iraq.

2003 Ron Paul 5:56
After we take over Iraq, how long would one expect it to take until there are authentic nationwide elections in that country? The odds of that happening in even a hundred years are remote. It’s virtually impossible to imagine a time when democratic elections would ever occur for the election of leaders in a constitutional republic dedicated for protection of liberty any place in the region.

2003 Ron Paul 5:57
  Foreign Policy, Welfare, and 9/11

2003 Ron Paul 5:58
The tragedy of 9/11 and its aftermath dramatize so clearly how a flawed foreign policy has served to encourage the majoritarians determined to run everyone’s life.

2003 Ron Paul 5:59
Due to its natural inefficiencies and tremendous costs, a failing welfare state requires an ever-expanding authoritarian approach to enforce mandates, collect the necessary revenues, and keep afloat an unworkable system. Once the people grow to depend on government subsistence, they demand its continuation.

2003 Ron Paul 5:60
Excessive meddling in the internal affairs of other nations and involving ourselves in every conflict around the globe has not endeared the United States to the oppressed of the world. The Japanese are tired of us. The South Koreans are tired of us. The Europeans are tired of us. The Central Americans are tired of us. The Filipinos are tired of us. And above all, the Arab Muslims are tired of us.

2003 Ron Paul 5:61
Angry and frustrated by our persistent bullying and disgusted with having their own government bought and controlled by the United States, joining a radical Islamic movement was a natural and predictable consequence for Muslims.

2003 Ron Paul 5:62
We believe bin Laden when he takes credit for an attack on the West, and we believe him when he warns us of an impending attack. But we refuse to listen to his explanation of why he and his allies are at war with us.

2003 Ron Paul 5:63
Bin Laden’s claims are straightforward. The U.S. defiles Islam with military bases on holy land in Saudi Arabia, its initiation of war against Iraq, with 12 years of persistent bombing, and its dollars and weapons being used against the Palestinians as the Palestinian territory shrinks and Israel’s occupation expands. There will be no peace in the world for the next 50 years or longer if we refuse to believe why those who are attacking us do it.

2003 Ron Paul 5:64
To dismiss terrorism as the result of Muslims hating us because we’re rich and free is one of the greatest foreign-policy frauds ever perpetrated on the American people. Because the propaganda machine, the media, and the government have restated this so many times, the majority now accept it at face value. And the administration gets the political cover it needs to pursue a “holy” war for democracy against the infidels who hate us for our goodness.

2003 Ron Paul 5:65
Polling on the matter is followed closely and, unfortunately, is far more important than the rule of law. Do we hear the pundits talk of constitutional restraints on the Congress and the administration?  No, all we ever hear are reassurances that the majority supports the President; therefore it must be all right.

2003 Ron Paul 5:66
The terrorists’ attacks on us, though never justified, are related to our severely flawed foreign policy of intervention. They also reflect the shortcomings of a bureaucracy that is already big enough to know everything it needs to know about any impending attack but too cumbersome to do anything about it. Bureaucratic weaknesses within a fragile welfare state provide a prime opportunity for those whom we antagonize through our domination over world affairs and global wealth to take advantage of our vulnerability.

2003 Ron Paul 5:67
But what has been our answer to the shortcomings of policies driven by manipulated majority opinion by the powerful elite? We have responded by massively increasing the federal government’s policing activity to hold American citizens in check and make sure we are well-behaved and pose no threat, while massively expanding our aggressive presence around the world. There is no possible way these moves can make us more secure against terrorism, yet they will accelerate our march toward national bankruptcy with a currency collapse.

2003 Ron Paul 5:68
Relying on authoritarian democracy and domestic and international meddling only move us sharply away from a constitutional republic and the rule of law and toward the turbulence of a decaying democracy, about which Madison and others had warned.

2003 Ron Paul 5:69
Once the goal of liberty is replaced by a preconceived notion of the benefits and the moral justifications of a democracy, a trend toward internationalism and world government follows.

2003 Ron Paul 5:70
We certainly witnessed this throughout the 20 th century. Since World War II, we have failed to follow the Constitution in taking this country to war, but instead have deferred to the collective democratic wisdom of the United Nations.

2003 Ron Paul 5:71
Once it’s recognized that ultimate authority comes from an international body, whether the United Nations, NATO, the WTO, the World Bank, or the IMF, the contest becomes a matter of who holds the reins of power and is able to dictate what is perceived as the will of the people (of the world).  In the name of democracy, just as it is done in Washington, powerful nations with the most money will control UN policy. Bribery, threats, and intimidation are common practices used to achieve a “democratic” consensus-no matter how controversial and short-lived the benefits.

2003 Ron Paul 5:72
Can one imagine what it might be like if a true worldwide democracy existed and the United Nations were controlled by a worldwide, one man/one vote philosophy? The masses of China and India could vote themselves whatever they needed from the more prosperous western countries. How long would a world system last based on this absurdity? Yet this is the principle that we’re working so hard to impose on ourselves and others around the world.

2003 Ron Paul 5:73
In spite of the great strides made toward one-world government based on egalitarianism, I’m optimistic that this utopian nightmare will never come to fruition. I have already made the case that here at home powerful special interests take over controlling majority opinion, making sure fairness in distribution is never achieved. This fact causes resentment and becomes so expensive that the entire system becomes unstable and eventually collapses.

2003 Ron Paul 5:74
The same will occur internationally, even if it miraculously did not cause conflict among the groups demanding the loot confiscated from the producing individuals (or countries). Democratic socialism is so destructive to production of wealth that it must fail, just as socialism failed under Soviet Communism. We have a long way to go before old-fashioned nationalism is dead and buried. In the meantime, the determination of those promoting democratic socialism will cause great harm to many people before its chaotic end and we rediscover the basic principle responsible for all of human progress.

2003 Ron Paul 5:75
Paying for Democracy

2003 Ron Paul 5:76
With the additional spending to wage war against terrorism at home, while propping up an ever-increasing expensive and failing welfare state, and the added funds needed to police the world, all in the midst of a recession, we are destined to see an unbelievably huge explosion of deficit spending. Raising taxes won’t help. Borrowing the needed funds for the budgetary deficit, plus the daily borrowing from foreigners required to finance our ever-growing current account deficit, will put tremendous pressure on the dollar.

2003 Ron Paul 5:77
The time will come when the Fed will no longer be able to dictate low interest rates. Reluctance of foreigners to lend, the exorbitant size of our borrowing needs, and the risk premium will eventually send interest rates upward. Price inflation will accelerate, and the cost of living for all Americans will increase. Under these conditions, most Americans will face a decline in their standard of living.

2003 Ron Paul 5:78
Facing this problem of paying for past and present excess spending, the borrowing and inflating of the money supply has already begun in earnest. Many retirees, depending on their 401k funds and other retirement programs, are suffering the ill-effects of the stock market crash- a phenomenon that still has a long way to go. Depreciating the dollar by printing excessive money, like the Fed is doing, will eventually devastate the purchasing power of those retirees who are dependent on Social Security. Government cost-of-living increases will never be able to keep up with this loss. The elderly are already unable to afford the inflated costs of medical care, especially the cost of pharmaceuticals.

2003 Ron Paul 5:79
The reality is that we will not be able to inflate, tax, spend or borrow our way out of this mess that the Congress has delivered to the American people.  The demands that come with pure democracy always lead to an unaffordable system that ends with economic turmoil and political upheaval. Tragically, the worse the problems get, the louder is the demand for more of the same government programs that caused the problems in the first place- both domestic and international. Weaning off of government programs and getting away from foreign meddling because of political pressure are virtually impossible. The end comes only after economic forces make it clear we can no longer afford to pay for the extravagance that comes from democratic dictates.

2003 Ron Paul 5:80
Democracy is the most expensive form of government. There is no “king” with an interest in preserving the nation’s capital. Everyone desires something, and the special-interest groups, banding together, dictate to the politicians exactly what they need and want. Politicians are handsomely rewarded for being “effective,” that is, getting the benefits for the groups that support them. Effectiveness is never measured by efforts and achievements in securing liberty, even though it’s the most important element in a prosperous and progressive world.

2003 Ron Paul 5:81
Spending is predictable in a democracy, especially one that endorses foreign interventionism. It always goes up, both in nominal terms and in percentage of the nation’s wealth.  Paying for it can be quite complicated. The exact method is less consequential than the percent of the nation’s wealth the government commands. Borrowing and central-bank credit creation are generally used and are less noticeable, but more deceitful, than direct taxation to pay as we go.   If direct taxation were accomplished through monthly checks written by each taxpayer, the cost of government would immediately be revealed. And the democratic con game would end much more quickly.

2003 Ron Paul 5:82
The withholding principle was devised to make paying for the programs the majority demanded seem less painful. Passing on debt to the next generation through borrowing is also a popular way to pay for welfare and warfare. The effect of inflating a currency to pay the bills is difficult to understand, and the victims are hard to identify. Inflation is the most sinister method of payment for a welfare state. It, too, grows in popularity as the demands increase for services that aren’t affordable.

2003 Ron Paul 5:83
Although this appears to be a convenient and cheap way to pay the bills, the economic consequences of lost employment, inflated prices, and economic dislocation make the long-term consequences much more severe than paying as we go. Not only is this costly in terms of national wealth, it significantly contributes to the political chaos and loss of liberty that accompany the death throes of a doomed democracy.

2003 Ron Paul 5:84
This does not mean that direct taxes won’t be continuously raised to pay for out-of-control spending. In a democracy, all earned wealth is assumed to belong to the government. Therefore any restraint in raising taxes, and any tax cuts or tax credits, are considered “costs” to government. Once this notion is established, tax credits or cuts are given only under condition that the beneficiaries conform to the democratic consensus. Freedom of choice is removed, even if a group is merely getting back control of that which was rightfully theirs in the first place.

2003 Ron Paul 5:85
Tax-exempt status for various groups is not universal but is conditioned on whether their beliefs and practices are compatible with politically correct opinions endorsed by the democratic majority. This concept is incompatible with the principles of private-property ownership and individual liberty. By contrast, in a free society all economic and social decision-making is controlled by private property owners without government intrusion, as long as no one is harmed in the process.

2003 Ron Paul 5:86
Confusion Regarding Democracy The vast majority of the American people have come to accept democracy as a favorable system and are pleased with our efforts to pursue Wilson’s dream of “making the world safe for democracy.” But the goals of pure democracy and that of a constitutional republic are incompatible. A clear understanding of the difference is paramount, if we are to remain a free and prosperous nation.

2003 Ron Paul 5:87
There are certain wonderful benefits in recognizing the guidance that majority opinion offers. It takes a consensus or prevailing attitude to endorse the principles of liberty and a Constitution to protect them. This is a requirement for the rule of law to succeed. Without a consensus, the rule of law fails. This does not mean that the majority or public opinion measured by polls, court rulings, or legislative bodies should be able to alter the constitutional restraints on the government’s abuse of life, liberty, and property. But in a democracy, that happens. And we know that today it is happening in this country on a routine basis.

2003 Ron Paul 5:88
In a free society with totally free markets, the votes by consumers through their purchases, or refusals to purchase, determine which businesses survive and which fail. This is free-choice “democracy” and it is a powerful force in producing and bringing about economic efficiency. In today’s democracy by decree, government laws dictate who receives the benefits and who gets shortchanged. Conditions of employment and sales are taxed and regulated at varying rates, and success or failure is too often dependent on government action than by consumers’ voting in the marketplace by their spending habits. Individual consumers by their decisions should be in charge, not governments armed with mandates from the majority.

2003 Ron Paul 5:89
Even a system of free-market money (a redeemable gold-coin standard) functions through the principle of consumers always voting or withholding support for that currency. A gold standard can only work when freely converted into gold coins, giving every citizen a right to vote on a daily basis for or against the government money.

2003 Ron Paul 5:90
The Way Out

2003 Ron Paul 5:91
It’s too late to avoid the turbulence and violence that Madison warned about. It has already started. But it’s important to minimize the damage and prepare the way for a restoration of the republic. The odds are not favorable, but not impossible. No one can know the future with certainty. The Soviet system came to an abrupt end with less violence than could have ever been imagined at the height of the Cold War. It was a pleasant surprise.

2003 Ron Paul 5:92
Interestingly enough, what is needed is a majority opinion, especially by those who find themselves in leadership roles- whether political, educational, or in the media that rejects democracy- and support the rule of law within the republic. This majority support is essential for the preservation of the freedom and prosperity with which America is identified.

2003 Ron Paul 5:93
This will not occur until we as a nation once again understand how freedom serves the interests of everyone. Henry Grady Weaver, in his 1947 classic, “The Mainspring of Human Progress,” superbly explains how it works. His thesis is simple. Liberty permits progress, while government intervention tends always to tyranny. Liberty releases creative energy; government intervention suppresses it. This release of energy was never greater than in the time following the American Revolution and the writing of the U.S. Constitution.

2003 Ron Paul 5:94
Instead of individual activity being controlled by the government or superstitious beliefs about natural and mystical events, activity is controlled by the individual. This understanding recognizes the immense value in voluntary cooperation and enlightened self-interests. Freedom requires self-control and moral responsibility. No one owes anyone else anything and everyone is responsible for his or her own acts. The principle of never harming one’s neighbor, or never sending the government to do the dirty work, is key to making the system tend toward peaceful pursuits and away from the tyranny and majority-induced violence. Nothing short of a reaffirmation of this principle can restore the freedoms once guaranteed under the Constitution. Without this, prosperity for the masses is impossible, and as a nation we become more vulnerable to outside threats.

2003 Ron Paul 5:95
In a republic, the people are in charge. The Constitution provides strict restraints on the politicians, bureaucrats and the military. Everything the government is allowed to do is only done with explicit permission from the people or the Constitution.  Today, it’s the opposite. The American people must get permission from the government for their every move, whether it’s use of their own property or spending their own money.

2003 Ron Paul 5:96
Even the most serious decision, such as going to war, is done while ignoring the Constitution and without a vote of the people’s representatives in the Congress. Members of the global government have more to say about when American troops are put in harm’s way than the U.S. Congress.

2003 Ron Paul 5:97
The Constitution no longer restrains the government. The government restrains the people in all that they do. This destroys individual creative energy, and the “mainspring of human progress” is lost. The consequences are less progress, less prosperity, and less personal fulfillment.

2003 Ron Paul 5:98
A system that rejects voluntary contracts, enlightened self interest, and individual responsibilities permits the government to assume these responsibilities. And the government officials become morally obligated to protect us from ourselves, attempting to make us better people and setting standards for our personal behavior. That effort is already in full swing. But if this attitude prevails, liberty is lost.

2003 Ron Paul 5:99
When government assumes the responsibility for individuals to achieve excellence and virtue, it does so at the expense of liberty, and must resort to force and intimidation. Standards become completely arbitrary, depending on the attitude of those in power and the perceived opinion of the majority. Freedom of choice is gone.  This leads to inevitable conflicts with the government dictating what one can eat, drink or smoke. One group may promote abstinence, the other tax-supported condom distribution. Arguments over literature, prayer, pornography, and sexual behavior are endless. It is now not even permissible to mention the word “God” on public property. A people who allows its government to set personal moral standards, for all non-violent behavior, will naturally allow it to be involved in the more important aspects of spiritual life. For instance, there are tax deductions for churches that are politically correct, but not for those whose beliefs that are considered out of the mainstream. Groups that do not meet the official politically correct standards are more likely to be put on a “terrorist” list.

2003 Ron Paul 5:100
This arbitrary and destructive approach to solving difficult problems must be rejected if we ever hope to live again in a society where the role of government is limited to that of protecting liberty.

2003 Ron Paul 5:101
The question that I’m most often asked when talking about this subject is, “Why do our elected leaders so easily relinquish liberty and have such little respect for the Constitution?” The people of whom I speak are convinced that liberty is good and big government is dangerous. They are also quite certain that we have drifted a long way away from the principles that made America great, and their bewilderment continuously elicits a big “Why?”

2003 Ron Paul 5:102
There’s no easy answer to this and no single explanation. It involves temptation, envy, greed, and ignorance, but worst of all, humanitarian zeal. Unfortunately, the greater the humanitarian outreach, the greater the violence required to achieve it. The greater the desire to perform humanitarian deeds through legislation, the greater the violence required to achieve it. Few understand this. There are literally no limits to the good deeds that some believe need to be done. Rarely does anyone question how each humanitarian act by government undermines the essential element of all human progress- individual liberty.

2003 Ron Paul 5:103
Failure of government programs prompts more determined efforts, while the loss of liberty is ignored or rationalized away. Whether it’s the war against poverty, drugs, terrorism, or the current Hitler of the day, an appeal to patriotism is used to convince the people that a little sacrifice of liberty, here and there, is a small price to pay.

2003 Ron Paul 5:104
The results, though, are frightening and will soon become even more so. Poverty has been made worse, the drug war is a bigger threat than drug use, terrorism remains a threat, and foreign wars have become routine and decided upon without congressional approval.

2003 Ron Paul 5:105
Most of the damage to liberty and the Constitution is done by men and women of good will who are convinced they know what is best for the economy, for others, and foreign powers. They inevitably fail to recognize their own arrogance in assuming they know what is the best personal behavior for others. Their failure to recognize the likelihood of mistakes by central planners allows them to ignore the magnitude of a flawed central government directive, compared to an individual or a smaller unit of government mistake.

2003 Ron Paul 5:106
C. S. Lewis had an opinion on this subject: “Of all tyrannies a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victim may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated, but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”

2003 Ron Paul 5:107

2003 Ron Paul 5:108
A system that is based on majority vote rather than the strict rule of law encourages the few who thrive on power and exerting authority over other people’s lives, unlike the many driven by sincere humanitarian concerns. Our current system rewards those who respond to age-old human instincts of envy and greed as they gang up on those who produce. Those individuals who are tempted by the offer of power are quick to accommodate those who are the most demanding of government-giveaway programs and government contracts. These special-interest groups notoriously come from both the poor and the rich, while the middle class is required to pay.

2003 Ron Paul 5:109
It’s not just a coincidence that, in the times of rapid monetary debasement, the middle class suffers the most from the inflation and job losses that monetary inflation brings. When inflation is severe, which it will become, the middle class can be completely wiped out. The stock market crash gives us a hint as to what is likely to come as this country is forced to pay for the excesses sustained over the past 30 years while operating under a fiat monetary system.

2003 Ron Paul 5:110
Eric Hoffer, the longshoreman philosopher, commented on this subject as well:  “Absolute power corrupts even when exercised for humane purposes. The benevolent despot who sees himself as a shepherd of the people still demands from others the submissiveness of sheep.”

2003 Ron Paul 5:111
Good men driven by a desire for benevolence encourage the centralization of power. The corruptive temptation of power is made worse when domestic and international interventions go wrong and feed into the hate and envy that invade men’s souls when the love of liberty is absent.

2003 Ron Paul 5:112
Those of good will who work to help the downtrodden do so not knowing they are building a class of rulers who will become drunk with their own arrogance and lust for power. Generally only a few in a society yield to the urge to dictate to others, and seek power for the sake of power and then abuse it. Most members of society are complacent and respond to propaganda, but they unite in the democratic effort to rearrange the world in hopes of gaining benefits through coercive means and convince themselves they are helping their fellow man as well. A promise of security is a powerful temptation for many.

2003 Ron Paul 5:113
A free society, on the other hand, requires that these same desires be redirected. The desire for power and authority must be over one’s self alone. The desire for security and prosperity should be directed inward, rather than toward controlling others. We cannot accept the notion that the gang solution endorsed by the majority is the only option. Self-reliance and personal responsibility are crucial.

2003 Ron Paul 5:114
But there is also a problem with economic understanding. Economic ignorance about the shortcomings of central economic planning, excessive taxation and regulations, central bank manipulation of money, and credit and interest rates is pervasive in our nation’s capital. A large number of conservatives now forcefully argue that deficits don’t matter. Spending programs never shrink, no matter whether conservatives or liberals are in charge. Rhetoric favoring free trade is canceled out by special-interest protectionist measures. Support of international government agencies that manage trade, such as the IMF, the World Bank, the WTO, and Nafta politicizes international trade and eliminates any hope that free-trade capitalism will soon emerge.

2003 Ron Paul 5:115
The federal government will not improve on its policies until the people coming to Washington are educated by a different breed of economists than those who dominate our government-run universities. Economic advisors and most officeholders merely reflect the economics taught to them. A major failure of our entire system will most likely occur before serious thought is given once again to the guidelines laid out in the Constitution.

2003 Ron Paul 5:116
The current economic system of fiat money and interventionism (both domestic and international) serves to accommodate the unreasonable demands for government to take care of the people. And this, in turn, contributes to the worst of human instincts:  authoritarian control by the few over the many.

2003 Ron Paul 5:117
We, as a nation, have lost our understanding of how the free market provides the greatest prosperity for the greatest number. Not only have most of us forgotten about the invisible hand of Adam Smith, few have ever heard of Mises and Hayek- two individuals who understood exactly why all the economic ups and downs of the 20 th century occurred, as well as the cause of the collapse of the Soviet Union.

2003 Ron Paul 5:118
But worst of all, we have lost our faith in freedom. Materialistic concerns and desire for security drive all national politics. This trend has sharply accelerated since 9/11.

2003 Ron Paul 5:119
Understanding the connection between liberty, prosperity, and security has been lost. The priorities are backwards. Prosperity and security come from liberty. Peace and the absence of war come as a consequence of liberty and free trade. The elimination of ignorance and restraints on do-goodism and authoritarianism in a civilized society can only be achieved through a contractual arrangement between the people and the government- in our case, the U.S. Constitution. This document was the best ever devised for releasing the creative energy of a free people while strictly holding in check the destructive powers of government. Only the rule of law can constrain those who, by human instinct, look for a free ride while delivering power to those few, found in every society, whose only goal in life is a devilish desire to rule over others.

2003 Ron Paul 5:120
The rule of law in a republic protects free-market activity and private-property ownership and provides for equal justice under the law. It is this respect for law and rights over government power that protects the mainspring of human progress from the enemies of liberty. Communists and other socialists have routinely argued that the law is merely a tool of the powerful capitalists.  But they have it backwards. Under democracy and fascism, the pseudo-capitalists write the laws that undermine the Constitution and jeopardize the rights and property of all citizens. They fail to realize it is the real law, the Constitution itself, which guarantees rights and equal justice and permits capitalism, thus guaranteeing progress.

2003 Ron Paul 5:121
Arbitrary, ever-changing laws are the friends of dictators. Authoritarians argue constantly that the Constitution is a living document, and that rigid obedience to ideological purity is the enemy we should be most concerned about. They would have us believe that those who cherish strict obedience to the rule of law in the defense of liberty are wrong merely because they demand ideological purity. They fail to mention that their love of relative rights and pure democracy is driven by a rigid obedience to an ideology as well. The issue is never rigid beliefs versus reasonable friendly compromise. In politics, it’s always competition between two strongly held ideologies. The only challenge for men and women of good will is to decide the wisdom and truth of the ideologies offered.

2003 Ron Paul 5:122
Nothing short of restoring a republican form of government with strict adherence to the rule of law, and curtailing illegal government programs, will solve our current and evolving problems.

2003 Ron Paul 5:123
Eventually the solution will be found with the passage of the Liberty Amendment.  Once there is serious debate on this amendment, we will know that the American people are considering the restoration of our constitutional republic and the protection of individual liberty.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 6


January 30, 2003
Social Security for American Citizens Only!

2003 Ron Paul 6:1
Mr. Speaker, today I introduce the Social Security for American Citizens Only Act. This act forbids the federal government from providing Social Security benefits to non-citizens. It also ends the practice of totalization. Totalization is where the Social Security Administration takes into account the number of year’s an individual worked abroad, and thus was not paying payroll taxes, in determining that individual’s eligibility for social security benefits!

2003 Ron Paul 6:2
Hard as it may be to believe, the Untied States Government already provides Social Security benefits to citizens of 17 other countries. Under current law, citizens of those countries covered by these agreements may have an easier time getting Social Security benefits than public school teachers or policemen!

2003 Ron Paul 6:3
Obviously, this program provides a threat to the already fragile Social Security system, and the threat is looming larger.  Just before Christmas, the press reported on a pending deal between the United States and the government of Mexico, which would make hundreds of thousands of Mexican citizens eligible for U.S. Social Security benefits.  Totalization is the centerpiece of this proposal, so even if a Mexican citizen did not work in the United States long enough to qualify for Social Security, the number of years worked in Mexico would be added to bring up the total and thus make the Mexican worker eligible for cash transfers from the United States.

2003 Ron Paul 6:4
Mr. Speaker, press reports also indicate that thousands of foreigners who would qualify for U.S. Social Security benefits actually came to the United States and worked here illegally. That’s right: The federal government may actually allow someone who came to the United States illegally, worked less than the required number of years to qualify for Social Security, and then returned to Mexico for the rest of his working years, to collect full U.S. Social Security benefits while living in Mexico. That is an insult to the millions of Americans who pay their entire working lives into the system and now face the possibility that there may be nothing left when it is their turn to retire.

2003 Ron Paul 6:5
The proposed agreement is nothing more than a financial reward to those who have willingly and knowingly violated our own immigration laws. Talk about an incentive for illegal immigration! How many more would break the law to come to this country if promised U.S. government paychecks for life? Is creating a global welfare state on the back of the American taxpayer a good idea? The program also establishes a very disturbing precedent of U.S. foreign aid to individual citizens rather than to states.

2003 Ron Paul 6:6
Estimates of what this deal with the Mexican government would cost top one billion dollars per year. Supporters of the Social Security to Mexico deal may attempt to downplay the effect the agreement would have on the system, but actions speak louder than words: According to several press reports, the State Department and the Social Security Administration are already negotiating to build a new building in Mexico City to handle the expected rush of applicants for this new program!

2003 Ron Paul 6:7
As the system braces for a steep increase in those who will be drawing from the Social Security trust fund, it makes no sense to expand it into a global welfare system. Social Security was designed to provide support for retired American citizens who worked in the United States. We should be shoring up the system for those Americans who have paid in for decades, not expanding it to cover foreigners who have not.

2003 Ron Paul 6:8
It is long past time for Congress to stand up to the internationalist bureaucrats and start looking out for the American worker. I therefore call upon my colleagues to stop the use of the Social Security trust fund as yet another vehicle for foreign aid by cosponsoring the Social Security for American Citizens Only Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 7


January 30, 2003
Abolish Selective Service

2003 Ron Paul 7:1
Mr. Speaker, I am today introducing legislation to repeal the Selective Service Act and related parts of the US Code.  The Department of Defense, in response to recent calls to reinstate the draft, has confirmed that conscription serves no military need. This is only the most recent confirmation that the draft, and thus the Selective Service system, serves no military purpose. In 1999, then-Secretary of the Army Louis Caldera, in a speech before the National Press Club, admitted that “Today, with our smaller, post-Cold War armed forces, our stronger volunteer tradition and our need for longer terms of service to get a good return on the high, up-front training costs, it would be even harder to fashion a fair draft.”   

2003 Ron Paul 7:2
Obviously, if there is no military need for the draft, then there is no need for Selective Service registration.  Furthermore, Mr. Speaker, Selective Service registration is an outdated and outmoded system, which has been made obsolete by technological advances. 

2003 Ron Paul 7:3
In fact, in 1993 the Department of Defense issued a report stating that registration could be stopped “with no effect on military mobilization and no measurable effect on the time it would take to mobilize, and no measurable effect on military recruitment.” Yet the American taxpayer has been forced to spend over $500 million dollars on an outdated system “with no measurable effect on military mobilization!”

2003 Ron Paul 7:4
Shutting down Selective Service will give taxpayers a break without adversely affecting military efforts. Shutting down Selective Service will also end a program that violates the very principals of individual liberty our nation was founded upon.  The moral case against the draft was eloquently expressed by former President Ronald Regan in the publication Human Events in 1979:   “...it [conscription] rests on the assumption that your kids belong to the state. If we buy that assumption then it is for the state -- not for parents, the community, the religious institutions or teachers -- to decide who shall have what values and who shall do what work, when, where and how in our society. That assumption isn’t a new one. The Nazis thought it was a great idea .”

2003 Ron Paul 7:5
I hope all my colleagues to join me in working to shut down this un-American relic of a bygone era and help realize the financial savings and the gains to individual liberties that can be achieved by ending Selective Service registration.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 8


January 30, 2003
End the Income Tax – Pass the Liberty Amendment

2003 Ron Paul 8:1
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to introduce the Liberty Amendment, which repeals the 16th Amendment, thus paving the way for real change in the way government collects and spends the people’s hard-earned money.  The Liberty Amendment also explicitly forbids the federal government from performing any action not explicitly authorized by the United States Constitution.

2003 Ron Paul 8:2
The 16th Amendment gives the federal government a direct claim on the lives of American citizens by enabling Congress to levy a direct income tax on individuals. Until the passage of the 16th amendment, the Supreme Court had consistently held that Congress had no power to impose an income tax.

2003 Ron Paul 8:3
Income taxes are responsible for the transformation of the federal government from one of limited powers into a vast leviathan whose tentacles reach into almost every aspect of American life.  Thanks to the income tax, today the federal government routinely invades our privacy, and penalizes our every endeavor. 

2003 Ron Paul 8:4
The Founding Fathers realized that “the power to tax is the power to destroy,” which is why they did not give the federal government the power to impose an income tax. Needless to say, the Founders would be horrified to know that Americans today give more than a third of their income to the federal government. 

2003 Ron Paul 8:5
Income taxes not only diminish liberty, they retard economic growth by discouraging work and production. Our current tax system also forces Americans to waste valuable time and money on complacence with an ever-more complex tax code. The increased interest in flat-tax and national sales tax proposals, as well as the increasing number of small businesses that questioning the Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS)  “withholding” system provides further proof that America is tired of the labyrinthine tax code. Americans are also increasingly fed up with an IRS that continues to ride roughshod over their civil liberties, despite recent “pro-taxpayer” reforms.

2003 Ron Paul 8:6
Mr. Speaker, America survived and prospered for 140 years without an income tax, and with a federal government that generally adhered to strictly constitutional functions, operating with modest excise revenues. The income tax opened the door to the era (and errors) of Big Government. I hope my colleagues will help close that door by cosponsoring the Liberty Amendment.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 9


January 30, 2003
Stop Taxing Social Security

2003 Ron Paul 9:1
Mr. Speaker, today I am pleased to introduce two pieces of legislation to reduce taxes on senior citizens. The first bill, the Social Security Beneficiary Tax Reduction Act, repeals the 1993 tax increase on Social Security benefits. Repealing this increase on Social Security benefits is a good first step toward reducing the burden imposed by the federal government on senior citizens. However, imposing any tax on Social Security benefits is unfair and illogical. This is why I am also introducing the Senior Citizens’ Tax Elimination Act, which repeals all taxes on Social Security benefits.

2003 Ron Paul 9:2
Since Social Security benefits are financed with tax dollars, taxing these benefits is yet another example of double taxation. Furthermore, “taxing” benefits paid by the government is merely an accounting trick, a shell game which allows members of Congress to reduce benefits by subterfuge. This allows Congress to continue using the Social Security trust fund as a means of financing other government programs, and masks the true size of the federal deficit.  Instead of imposing ridiculous taxes on senior citizens, Congress should ensure the integrity of the Social Security trust fund by ending the practice of using trust fund monies for other programs. In order to accomplish this goal I introduced the Social

2003 Ron Paul 9:3
Security Preservation Act (H.R. 219), which ensures that all money in the Social Security trust fund is spent solely on Social Security. At a time when Congress’ inability to control spending is once again threatening the Social Security trust fund, the need for this legislation has never been greater. When the government taxes Americans to fund Social Security, it promises the American people that the money will be there for them when they retire. Congress has a moral obligation to keep that promise.

2003 Ron Paul 9:4
In conclusion, Mr. Speaker, I urge my colleagues to help free senior citizens from oppressive taxation by supporting my Senior Citizens’ Tax Elimination Act and my Social Security Beneficiary Tax Reduction Act. I also urge my colleagues to ensure that money from the Social Security trust fund are used solely for Social Security benefits and not wasted on frivolous government programs.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 10


January 30, 2003
The Terror Immigration Elimination Act

2003 Ron Paul 10:1
Mr. Speaker, today I am introducing the “Terror Immigration Elimination Act of 2003.”

2003 Ron Paul 10:2
The United States remains vulnerable to terrorist attacks more than a year after the tragedy of 9/11. Our borders remain porous - a virtual revolving door and welcome mat for those who would seek to harm us. This was never more evident than when news broke some time ago that the Immigration and Naturalization Service had actually renewed the visas for several of the 9/11 hijackers after the attack had taken place. We cannot prevent terrorism if we cannot keep terrorists out of our country.

2003 Ron Paul 10:3
That is why I am introducing the “Terror Immigration Elimination Act of 2003.” This bill will deny student and “diversity” visas to anyone coming from a country currently on the State Department’s list of terrorism-sponsoring countries.

2003 Ron Paul 10:4
It may seem shocking that citizens from these countries can even still receive these visas, but it is true. We must put a lock on this revolving door if we are going to protect Americans from the continuing threat of terrorism on our soil.

2003 Ron Paul 10:5
Further, Mr. Speaker, it is time we face reality regarding Saudi Arabia. We must remember that most of the 9/11 hijackers were Saudi nationals. Also, when al-Qaeda supporters were rounded up from Afghanistan and held at Camp X-Ray, reports showed that of the 158 prisoners more than one hundred were Saudi nationals. With such an evident level of involvement from Saudi nationals in these activities, it is quite obvious that the Saudi government is not doing all it can, or all it should, in resolving this urgent problem. Therefore, Saudi citizens will also be denied student and “diversity” visas to the United States under this bill.

2003 Ron Paul 10:6
Mr. Speaker, we need to take concrete and substantive steps to protect the United States and its citizens against further terrorist attacks. One such step is passage of this bill. I urge my colleagues to support this legislation and I look forward to its passage.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 11


February 11, 2003
Teacher Tax Cut Act

2003 Ron Paul 11:1
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to introduce two pieces of legislation that raise the pay of teachers and other educators by cutting their taxes. I am sure that all my colleagues agree that it is long past time to begin treating those who have dedicated their lives to educating America’s children with the respect they deserve. Compared to other professionals, educators are under-appreciated and under-paid. This must change if America is to have the finest education system in the world!

2003 Ron Paul 11:2
Quality education is impossible without quality teaching. If we continue to undervalue educators, it will become harder to attract, and keep, good people in the education profession. While educators’ pay is primarily a local issue, Congress can, and should, help raise educators’ take home pay by reducing educators’ taxes.

2003 Ron Paul 11:3
This is why I am introducing the Teachers Tax Cut Act. This legislation provides every teacher in America with a $1,000 tax credit. I am also introducing the Professional Educators Tax Relief Act, which extends the $1,000 tax credit to counselors, librarians, and all school personnel involved in any aspect of the K-12 academic program.

2003 Ron Paul 11:4
The Teacher Tax Cut Act and the Professional Educators Tax Relief Act increase the salaries of teachers and other education professionals without raising federal expenditures. By raising the take-home pay of professional educators, these bills encourage highly qualified people to enter, and remain in, education. These bills also let America’s professional educators know that the American people and the Congress respect their work.

2003 Ron Paul 11:5
I hope all my colleagues join me in supporting our nation’s teachers and other professional educators by cosponsoring the Teacher Tax Cut Act and the Professional Educators Tax Relief Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 12


February 11, 2003
The Family Education Freedom Act

2003 Ron Paul 12:1
Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to introduce the Family Education Freedom Act, a bill to empower millions of working and middle-class Americans to choose a non-public education for their children, as well as making it easier for  parents to actively participate in improving public schools. The Family Education Freedom Act accomplishes it goals by allowing American parents a tax credit of up to $3,000 for the expenses incurred in sending their child to private, public, parochial, other religious school, or for home schooling their children.

2003 Ron Paul 12:2
The Family Education Freedom Act returns the fundamental principal of a truly free economy to America’s education system: what the great economist Ludwig von Mises called “consumer sovereignty”. Consumer sovereignty simply means consumers decide who succeeds or fails in the market. Businesses that best satisfy consumer demand will be the most successful. Consumer sovereignty is the means by which the free market maximizes human happiness.

2003 Ron Paul 12:3
Currently, consumers are less than sovereign in the education market.  Funding decisions are increasingly controlled by the federal government. Because “He who pays the piper calls the tune,” public, and even private schools, are paying greater attention to the dictates of federal “educrats” while ignoring the wishes of the parents to an ever-greater degree. As such, the lack of consumer sovereignty in education is destroying parental control of education and replacing it with state control. Loss of control is a key reason why so many of America’s parents express dissatisfaction with the educational system.

2003 Ron Paul 12:4
According to a study by The Polling Company, over 70% of all Americans support education tax credits! This is just one of numerous studies and public opinion polls showing that Americans want Congress to get the federal bureaucracy out of the schoolroom and give parents more control over their children’s education.

2003 Ron Paul 12:5
Today, Congress can fulfill the wishes of the American people for greater control over their children’s education by simply allowing parents to keep more of their hard-earned money to spend on education rather than force them to send it to Washington to support education programs reflective only of the values and priorities of Congress and the federal bureaucracy.

2003 Ron Paul 12:6
The $3,000 tax credit will make a better education affordable for millions of parents. Mr. Speaker, many parents who would choose to send their children to private, religious, or parochial schools are unable to afford the tuition, in large part because of the enormous tax burden imposed on the American family by Washington.

2003 Ron Paul 12:7
The Family Education Freedom Act also benefits parents who choose to send their children to public schools. Parents of children in public schools may use this credit to help improve their local schools by helping finance the purchase of  educational tools such as computers or to ensure their local schools can offer enriching extracurricular activities such as  music programs. Parents of public school students may also wish to use the credit to pay for special services, such as tutoring, for their children.

2003 Ron Paul 12:8
Increasing parental control of education is superior to funneling more federal tax dollars, followed by greater federal control, into the schools. According a Manhattan Institute study of the effects of state policies promoting parental control over education, a minimal increase in parental control boosts students’ average SAT verbal score by 21 points and students’ SAT math score by 22 points! The Manhattan Institute study also found that increasing parental control of education is the best way to improve student performance on the National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) tests.

2003 Ron Paul 12:9
Clearly, enactment of the Family Education Freedom Act is the best thing this Congress could do to improve public education. Furthermore, a greater reliance on parental expenditures rather than government tax dollars will help make the public schools into true community schools that reflect the wishes of parents and the interests of the students.

2003 Ron Paul 12:10
The Family Education Freedom Act will also aid those parents who choose to educate their children at home. Home schooling has become an increasingly popular, and successful, method of educating children. Home schooled children out-perform their public school peers by 30 to 37 percentile points across all subjects on nationally standardized achievement exams. Home schooling parents spend thousands of dollars annually, in addition to the wages forgone by the spouse who forgoes outside employment, in order to educate their children in the loving environment of the home.

2003 Ron Paul 12:11
Ultimately, Mr. Speaker, this bill is about freedom. Parental control of child rearing, especially education, is one of the bulwarks of liberty. No nation can remain free when the state has greater influence over the knowledge and values transmitted to children than the family.

2003 Ron Paul 12:12
By moving to restore the primacy of parents to education, the Family Education Freedom Act will not only improve America’s education, it will restore a parent’s right to choose how best to educate one’s own child, a fundamental freedom that has been eroded by the increase in federal education expenditures and the corresponding decrease in the ability of parents to provide for their children’s education out of their own pockets. I call on all my colleagues to join me in allowing parents to devote more of their resources to their children’s education and less to feed the wasteful Washington bureaucracy by supporting the Family Education Freedom Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 13


February 11, 2003
Education Improvement Tax Cut Act

2003 Ron Paul 13:1
Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, I rise to introduce the Education Improvement Tax Cut Act. This act, a companion to my Family Education Freedom Act, takes a further step toward returning control over education resources to private citizens by providing a $3,000 tax credit for donations to scholarship funds to enable low-income children to attend private schools. It also encourages private citizens to devote more of their resources to helping public schools, by providing a $3,000 tax credit for cash or in-kind donations to public schools to support academic or extra curricular programs.

2003 Ron Paul 13:2
I need not remind my colleagues that education is one of the top priorities of the American people. After all, many members of Congress have proposed education reforms and a great deal of time is spent debating these proposals. However, most of these proposals either expand federal control over education or engage in the pseudo-federalism of  block grants. Many proposals that claim to increase local control over education actually extend federal power by  holding schools “accountable” to federal bureaucrats and politicians. Of course, schools should be held accountable for their results, but they should be held accountable to parents and school boards not to federal officials. Therefore, I propose we move in a different direction and embrace true federalism by returning control over the education dollar to the American people.

2003 Ron Paul 13:3
One of the major problems with centralized control over education funding is that spending priorities set by Washington-based Representatives, staffers, and bureaucrats do not necessarily match the needs of individual   communities. In fact, it would be a miracle if spending priorities determined by the wishes of certain politically powerful representatives or the theories of Education Department functionaries match the priorities of every community in a country as large and diverse as America. Block grants do not solve this problem as they simply allow states and localities   to choose the means to reach federally-determined ends.

2003 Ron Paul 13:4
Returning control over the education dollar for tax credits for parents and for other concerned citizens returns control  over both the means and ends of education policy to local communities. People in one community may use this credit to purchase computers, while children in another community may, at last, have access to a quality music program because of community leaders who took advantage of the tax credit contained in this bill.

2003 Ron Paul 13:5
Children in some communities may benefit most from the opportunity to attend private, parochial, or other religious  schools. One of the most encouraging trends in education has been the establishment of private scholarship programs.  These scholarship funds use voluntary contributions to open the doors of quality private schools to low-income children. By providing a tax credit for donations to these programs, Congress can widen the educational opportunities and   increase the quality of education for all children. Furthermore, privately-funded scholarships raise none of the concerns of state entanglement raised by publicly-funded vouchers.

2003 Ron Paul 13:6
There is no doubt that Americans will always spend generously on education, the question is who should control the education dollar- politicians and bureaucrats or the American people?  Mr. Speaker, I urge my colleagues to join me in placing control of education back in the hands of citizens and local communities by sponsoring the Education  Improvement Tax Cut Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 14


February 11, 2003
Prescription Drug Affordability Act

2003 Ron Paul 14:1
Mr. Speaker, I rise to introduce the Prescription Drug Affordability Act. This legislation ensures that millions of Americans, including seniors, have access to affordable pharmaceutical products. My bill makes pharmaceuticals more affordable to seniors by  reducing their taxes. It also removes needless government barriers to importing    pharmaceuticals and it protects Internet pharmacies, which are making affordable  prescription drugs available to millions of Americans, from being strangled by federal   regulation.

2003 Ron Paul 14:2
The first provision of my legislation provides seniors a tax credit equal to 80 percent of  their prescription drug costs. As many of my colleagues have pointed out, our nation’s seniors are struggling to afford the prescription drugs they need in order to maintain an active and healthy lifestyle. Yet, the federal government continues to impose taxes on Social Security benefits. Meanwhile, Congress continually raids the Social Security trust fund to finance unconstitutional programs! It is long past time for Congress to choose between helping seniors afford medicine or using the Social Security trust fund as a slush fund for big government and pork-barrel spending.

2003 Ron Paul 14:3
Mr. Speaker, I do wish to clarify that this tax credit is intended to supplement the efforts to reform and strengthen the Medicare system to ensure seniors have the ability to use Medicare funds to purchase prescription drugs. I am a strong supporter of strengthening the Medicare system to allow for more choice and consumer control, including structural reforms that will allow seniors to use Medicare funds to cover the costs of prescription  drugs. In addition to making prescription medications more affordable for seniors, my bill lowers  the price for prescription medicines by reducing barriers to the importation of FDA-approved pharmaceuticals. Under my bill, anyone wishing to import a drug simply submits an application to the FDA, which then must approve the drug unless the FDA finds the drug is either not approved for use in the US or is adulterated or misbranded.  This process will make safe and affordable imported medicines affordable to millions of Americans. Mr. Speaker, letting the free market work is the best means of lowering the cost of prescription drugs.

2003 Ron Paul 14:4
I need not remind my colleagues that many senior citizens and other Americans impacted  by the high costs of prescription medicine have demanded Congress reduce the barriers  which prevent American consumers from purchasing imported pharmaceuticals. Congress has responded to these demands by repeatedly passing legislation liberalizing the rules governing the importation of pharmaceuticals. However, implementation this provisions have been blocked by the federal bureaucracy. It is time Congress stood up for the American consumer and removed all unnecessary regulations on importing pharmaceuticals are removed.

2003 Ron Paul 14:5
The Prescription Drug Affordability Act also protects consumers’ access to affordable medicine by forbidding the Federal Government from regulating any Internet sales of FDA-approved pharmaceuticals by state-licensed pharmacists.  As I am sure my colleagues are aware, the Internet makes pharmaceuticals and other products more affordable and  accessible for millions of Americans. However, the federal government has threatened to destroy this option by imposing  unnecessary and unconstitutional regulations on web sites that sell pharmaceuticals. Any federal regulations would inevitably drive up prices of pharmaceuticals, thus depriving many consumers of access to affordable prescription medications.

2003 Ron Paul 14:6
In conclusion, Mr. Speaker, I urge my colleagues to make pharmaceuticals more affordable and accessible by lowering taxes on senior citizens, removing barriers to the importation of pharmaceuticals and protecting legitimate Internet pharmacies from needless regulation by cosponsoring the Prescription Drug Affordability Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 15


February 13, 2003
Support Medical Savings Accounts for Medicare

2003 Ron Paul 15:1
Mr. Speaker, I rise to introduce legislation that enhances senior citizens’ ability to control their health care and use Medicare money to pay for prescription drugs.  This legislation accomplishes these important goals by removing the numerical limitations and sunset provisions in the Medicare Medical Savings Account (MSAS) program so that all seniors can take advantage of the Medicare MSA option.

2003 Ron Paul 15:2
Medicare MSAs consist of a special savings account containing Medicare funds for seniors to use for routine medical expenses, including prescription drugs. Seniors in a Medicare MSA program are also provided with a catastrophic insurance policy to cover non-routine expenses such as major surgery. Under an MSA plan, the choice of whether to use Medicare funds for prescription drug costs, or other services not available under traditional Medicare such as mammograms, are made by seniors, not by bureaucrats and politicians.

2003 Ron Paul 15:3
One of the major weaknesses of the Medicare program is that seniors do not have the ability to use Medicare dollars to cover the costs of prescription medicines, even though prescription drugs represent the major health care expenditure for many seniors.

2003 Ron Paul 15:4
Medicare MSAs give those seniors who need to use Medicare funds for prescription drugs the ability to do so without expanding the power of the federal bureaucracy or forcing those seniors who currently have prescription drug coverage into a federal one-size-fits-all program.

2003 Ron Paul 15:5
Medicare MSAs will also ensure seniors access to a wide variety of health care services by minimizing the role of the federal bureaucracy. As many of my colleagues know, an increasing number of health care providers have withdrawn from the Medicare program because of the paperwork burden and constant interference with their practice by bureaucrats from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (previously known as the Health Care Financing Administration). The MSA program frees seniors and providers from this burden, thus making it more likely that quality providers will remain in the Medicare program!

2003 Ron Paul 15:6
Mr. Speaker, the most important reason to enact this legislation is seniors should not be treated like children and told what health care services they can and cannot have by the federal government. We in Congress have a duty to preserve and protect the Medicare trust fund and keep the promise to America’s seniors and working Americans, whose taxes finance Medicare, that they will have quality health care in their golden years.

2003 Ron Paul 15:7
However, we also have a duty to make sure that seniors can get the health care that suits their needs, instead of being forced into a cookie cutter program designed by Washington-DC-based bureaucrats! Medicare MSAs are a good first step toward allowing seniors the freedom to control their own health care.

2003 Ron Paul 15:8
In conclusion, Mr. Speaker, I urge my colleagues to provide our senior citizens greater control of their health care, including the ability to use Medicare money to purchase prescription drugs, by cosponsoring legislation to expand the Medicare MSA program.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 16


February 13, 2003
Oppose the Federal Welfare State

2003 Ron Paul 16:1
Mr. Speaker, no one can deny that welfare programs have undermined America’s moral fabric and constitutional system. Therefore, all those concerned with restoring liberty and protecting civil society from the maw of the omnipotent state should support efforts to eliminate the welfare state, or, at the very least, reduce federal control over the provision of social services. Unfortunately, the misnamed Personal Responsibility, Work, and Family Promotion Act (H.R. 4) actually increases the unconstitutional federal welfare state and thus undermines personal responsibility, the work ethic, and the family.

2003 Ron Paul 16:2
H.R. 4 reauthorizes the Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) block grant program, the main federal welfare program. Mr. Speaker, increasing federal funds always increases federal control, as the recipients of the funds must tailor their programs to meet federal mandates and regulations. More importantly, since federal funds represent resources taken out of the hands of private individuals, increasing federal funding leaves fewer resources available for the voluntary provision of social services, which, as I will explain in more detail later, is a more effective, moral, and constitutional means of meeting the needs of the poor.

2003 Ron Paul 16:3
H.R. 4 further increases federal control over welfare policy by increasing federal mandates on welfare recipients. This bill even goes so far as to dictate to states how they must spend their own funds! Many of the new mandates imposed by this legislation concern work requirements. Of course, Mr. Speaker, there is a sound argument for requiring recipients of welfare benefits to work. Among other benefits, a work requirement can help welfare recipients obtain useful job skills and thus increase the likelihood that they will find productive employment. However, forcing welfare recipients to work does raise valid concerns regarding how much control over one’s life should be ceded to the government in exchange for government benefits.

2003 Ron Paul 16:4
In addition, Mr. Speaker, it is highly unlikely that a “one-size-fits-all” approach dictated from Washington will meet the diverse needs of every welfare recipient in every state and locality in the nation. Proponents of this bill claim to support allowing states, localities, and private charities the flexibility to design welfare-to-work programs that fit their particular circumstances. Yet, this proposal constricts the ability of the states to design welfare-to-work programs that meet the unique needs of their citizens. I also question the wisdom of imposing as much as $11 billion in unfunded mandates on the states at a time when many are facing a fiscal crisis.

2003 Ron Paul 16:5
As former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura pointed out in reference to this proposal’s effects on Minnesota’s welfare-to-welfare work program, “We know what we are doing in Minnesota works. We have evidence. And our way of doing things has broad support in the state. Why should we be forced by the federal government to put our system at risk?” Why indeed, Mr. Speaker, should any state be forced to abandon its individual welfare programs because a group of self-appointed experts in Congress, the federal bureaucracy, and inside-the-beltway think tanks have decided there is only one correct way to transition people from welfare to work?

2003 Ron Paul 16:6
Mr. Speaker, H.R. 4 further expands the reach of the federal government by authorizing approximately $10 million dollars for new “marriage promotion” programs. I certainly recognize how the welfare state has contributed to the decline of the institution of marriage. As an ob-gyn with over 30 years of private practice. I know better than most the importance of stable, two parent families to a healthy society. However, I am skeptical, to say the least, of claims that government education programs can fix the deep-rooted cultural problems responsible for the decline of the American family.

2003 Ron Paul 16:7
Furthermore, Mr. Speaker, federal promotion of marriage opens the door for a level of social engineering that should worry all those concerned with preserving a free society. The federal government has no constitutional authority to promote any particular social arrangement; instead, the founders recognized that people are better off when they form their own social arrangements free from federal interference. The history of the failed experiments with welfarism and socialism shows that government can only destroy a culture; when a government tries to build a culture, it only further erodes the people’s liberty.

2003 Ron Paul 16:8
H.R. 4 further raises serious privacy concerns by expanding the use of the “New Hires Database” to allow states to use the database to verify unemployment claims. The New Hires Database contains the name and social security number of everyone lawfully employed in the United States. Increasing the states’ ability to identify fraudulent unemployment claims is a worthwhile public policy goal. However, every time Congress authorizes a new use for the New Hires Database it takes a step toward transforming it into a universal national database that can be used by government officials to monitor the lives of American citizens.

2003 Ron Paul 16:9
As with all proponents of welfare programs, the supporters of H.R. 4 show a remarkable lack of trust in the American people. They would have us believe that without the federal government, the lives of the poor would be “nasty, brutish and short.” However, as scholar Sheldon Richman of the Future of Freedom Foundation and others have shown, voluntary charities and organizations, such as friendly societies that devoted themselves to helping those in need, flourished in the days before the welfare state turned charity into a government function.

2003 Ron Paul 16:10
Today, government welfare programs have supplemented the old-style private programs. One major reason for this is that the policies of high taxes and inflationary Federal Reserve money imposed on the American people in order to finance the welfare state have reduced the income available for charitable giving. Many over-taxed Americans take the attitude toward private charity that “I give at the (tax) office.”

2003 Ron Paul 16:11
Releasing the charitable impulses of the American people by freeing them from the excessive tax burden so they can devote more of their resources to charity, is a moral and constitutional means of helping the needy. By contrast, the federal welfare state is neither moral nor constitutional. Nowhere in the Constitution is the federal government given the power to level excessive taxes on one group of citizens for the benefit of another group of citizens. Many of the founders would have been horrified to see modern politicians define compassion as giving away other people’s money stolen through confiscatory taxation. In the words of the famous essay by former Congressman Davy Crockett, this money is “Not Yours to Give.”

2003 Ron Paul 16:12
Voluntary charities also promote self-reliance, but government welfare programs foster dependency. In fact, it is in the self-interest of the bureaucrats and politicians who control the welfare state to encourage dependency. After all, when a private organization moves a person off welfare, the organization has fulfilled its mission and proved its worth to donors. In contrast, when people leave government welfare programs, they have deprived federal bureaucrats of power and of a justification for a larger amount of taxpayer funding.

2003 Ron Paul 16:13
In conclusion, H.R. 4 furthers federal control over welfare programs by imposing new mandates on the states, which furthers unconstitutional interference in matters best left to state and local governments, and individuals. Therefore, I urge my colleagues to oppose it. Instead, I hope my colleagues will learn the lessons of the failure of the welfare state and embrace a constitutional and compassionate agenda of returning control over the welfare programs to the American people.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 17


February 26, 2003
Another United Nations War?

2003 Ron Paul 17:1
President Bush Sr. proudly spoke of “The New World Order,” a term used by those who promote one- world government under the United Nations.   In going to war in 1991, he sought and received UN authority to push Iraqi forces out of Kuwait.  He forcefully stated that this UN authority was adequate, and that although a congressional resolution was acceptable, it was entirely unnecessary and he would proceed regardless.  At that time there was no discussion regarding a congressional declaration of war.  The first Persian Gulf War therefore was clearly a UN, political war fought within UN guidelines, not for U.S. security- and it was not fought through to victory.  The bombings, sanctions, and harassment of the Iraqi people have never stopped.   We are now about to resume the active fighting.  Although this is referred to as the second Persian Gulf War, it’s merely a continuation of a war started long ago, and is likely to continue for a long time even after Saddam Hussein is removed from power.

2003 Ron Paul 17:2
Our attitude toward the United Nations is quite different today compared to 1991.  I have argued for years against our membership in the United Nations because it compromises our sovereignty.  The U.S. has always been expected to pay an unfair percentage of UN expenses.  I contend that membership in the United Nations has led to impractical military conflicts that were highly costly both in lives and dollars, and that were rarely resolved.

2003 Ron Paul 17:3
Our 58 years in Korea have seen 33,000 lives lost, 100,000 casualties, and over a trillion dollars in today’s dollars spent.  Korea is the most outrageous example of our fighting a UN war without a declaration from the U.S. Congress.  And where are we today?  On the verge of a nuclear confrontation with a North Korean regime nearly out of control.  And to compound the irony, the South Koreans are intervening in hopes of diminishing the tensions that exist between the United States and North Korea!

2003 Ron Paul 17:4
As bad as the Vietnam nightmare was, at least we left and the UN was not involved.  We left in defeat and Vietnam remained a unified communist country.  The results have been much more salutary.  Vietnam is now essentially non-communist, and trade with the West is routine.  We didn’t disarm Vietnam, we never counted their weapons, and so far no one cares.   Peaceful relations have developed between our two countries, not by force of arms, but through trade and friendship.  No United Nations, no war, and no inspections served us well- even after many decades of war and a million deaths inflicted on the Vietnamese in an effort by both the French and the United States to force them into compliance with Western demands.

2003 Ron Paul 17:5
But in this new battle with Iraq, our relationship with the United Nations and our allies is drawing a lot of attention.  The administration now says it would be nice to have UN support, but it’s not necessary.  The President argues that a unilateralist approach is permissible with his understanding of national sovereignty.  But no mention is made of the fact that the authority to go to war is not a UN prerogative, and that such authority can only come from the U.S. Congress.

2003 Ron Paul 17:6
Although the argument that the United Nations cannot dictate to us what is in our best interest is correct, and we do have a right to pursue foreign policy unilaterally, it’s ironic that we’re making this declaration in order to pursue an unpopular war that very few people or governments throughout the world support.

2003 Ron Paul 17:7
But the argument for unilateralism and national sovereignty cannot be made for the purpose of enforcing UN Security Council resolutions.  That doesn’t make any sense.  If one wants to enforce UN Security Council resolutions, that authority can only come from the United Nations itself.  We end up with the worst of both worlds: hated for our unilateralism, but still lending credibility to the UN.

2003 Ron Paul 17:8
The Constitution makes it clear that if we must counter a threat to our security, that authority must come from the U. S. Congress.  Those who believe, and many sincerely do, that the United Nations serves a useful function, argue that ignoring the United Nations at this juncture will surely make it irrelevant.  Even with my opposition to the United Nations, I can hardly be pleased that its irrelevancy might come about because of our rush to war against a nation that has not aggressed against us nor poses any threat to us.

2003 Ron Paul 17:9
From my viewpoint the worst scenario would be for the United Nations to sanction this war, which may well occur if we offer enough U.S. taxpayer money and Iraqi oil to the reluctant countries.  If that happens we could be looking at another 58-year occupation, expanded Middle East chaos, or a dangerous spread of hostilities to all of Asia or even further.

2003 Ron Paul 17:10
With regard to foreign affairs, the best advice comes from our Founders and the Constitution.  It is better to promote peace and commerce with all nations, and exclude ourselves from the entangling, dangerous, complex, and unworkable alliances that come with our membership in the United Nations.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 18


February 28, 2003
The Financial Services Committee’s Terrible Blueprint for 2004

2003 Ron Paul 18:1
Supporters of limited, constitutional government and free markets will find little, if anything, to view favorably in the Financial Services Committee’s “Views and Estimates for Fiscal Year 2004.”   Almost every policy endorsed in this document is unconstitutional and a threat to the liberty and prosperity of the American people.

2003 Ron Paul 18:2
For example, this document gives an unqualified endorsement to increased taxpayer support for the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FINCEN). According to the committee, these increased funds are justified by FINCEN’s new authority under the PATRIOT Act. However, Mr. Chairman, FINCEN’s power to snoop into the private financial affairs of American citizens raises serious constitutional issues. Whether the expansion of FINCEN’s power threatens civil liberties is ignored in this document; instead, the committee is concerned that the federal financial police state does not have enough power and taxpayer money to invade the privacy of United States citizens!

2003 Ron Paul 18:3
The committee shows complete disregard for the American taxpayer and the United Sates Constitution by embracing increases in foreign aid. Congress has neither constitutional nor moral authority to take money from the American people and send it overseas. Furthermore, foreign aid rarely improves the standard of living of the citizens of the “beneficiary” countries. Instead, the aid all too often enriches corrupt politicians and helps stave off pressure for real reform. Furthermore, certain proposals embraced by the committee smack of economic imperialism, suggesting that if a country’s economic and other policies please American politicians and bureaucrats, they will be rewarded with money stolen from American taxpayers.

2003 Ron Paul 18:4
The committee also expresses unqualified support for programs such as the Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im), which use taxpayer dollars to subsidize large multinational corporations.  Ex-Im exists to subsidize corporations that are quite capable of paying the costs of their own export programs! Ex-Im also provides taxpayer funding for export programs that would never obtain funding in the private market. As Austrian economists Ludwig Von Mises and F.A. Hayek demonstrated, one of the purposes of the market is to determine the highest value of resources. Thus, the failure of a project to receive funding through the free market means the resources that could have gone to that project have a higher-valued use. Government programs that take funds from the private sector and use them to fund projects that cannot get market funding reduce economic efficiency and lower living standards.  Yet Ex-Im actually brags about its support for projects rejected by the market!

2003 Ron Paul 18:5
Finally, the committee’s views support expanding the domestic welfare state, particularly in the area of housing. This despite the fact that federal housing subsidies distort the housing market by taking capital that could be better used elsewhere, and applying it to housing at the direction of politicians and bureaucrats. Housing subsidies also violate the constitutional prohibitions against redistributionism. The federal government has no constitutional authority to abuse its taxing power to fund programs that reshape the housing market to the liking of politicians and bureaucrats.

2003 Ron Paul 18:6
Rather than embracing an agenda of expanded statism, I hope my colleagues will work to reduce government interference in the market that only benefits the politically powerful. For example, the committee could take a major step toward ending corporate welfare by holding hearings and a mark-up on my legislation to withdraw the United States from the Bretton Woods Agreement and end taxpayer support for the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The Financial Services Committee can also take a step toward restoring Congress’ constitutional role in monetary policy by passing legislation requiring congressional approval before the federal government buys or sells gold.

2003 Ron Paul 18:7
Perhaps the most disappointing omission from the committee’s views is the failure to address monetary policy. This is especially troubling given that many Americans have lost their jobs, while millions of others have seen severe declines in their net worth, because of the Federal Reserve’s continuing boom and bust monetary policy. It is long past time for Congress to examine seriously the need for reform of the system of fiat currency that is responsible for the cycle of booms and busts that plague the American economy.  Until this committee addresses those issues, I am afraid the American economy may suffer more recessions or even depressions in the future.

2003 Ron Paul 18:8
In conclusion, the “Views and Estimates” presented by the Financial Services Committee endorse increasing the power of the federal police state, as well as increasing both international and corporate welfare, while ignoring the economic problems created by federal intervention into the economy. I therefore urge my colleagues to reject this document and instead embrace an agenda of ending federal corporate welfare, protecting financial privacy, and reforming the fiat money system that is the root cause of America’s economic instability. 

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 19


March 4, 2003
The Myth of War Prosperity

2003 Ron Paul 19:1
Mr. Speaker, I want to talk tonight about an economic myth. There is a longstanding myth that war benefits the economy.

2003 Ron Paul 19:2
The argument goes that when a country is at war, jobs are created and the economy grows. This is a myth.   Many argue that World War II ended the Great Depression, which is another myth.   Unemployment went down because many men were drafted, but national economic output went down during the war.

2003 Ron Paul 19:3
Economic growth and a true end to the Depression did not occur until after World War II. So it is wrong to think there is an economic benefit arising from war.

2003 Ron Paul 19:4
There are many economic shortcomings during a war. During wartime it is much more common to experience inflation because the money presses are running to fund military expenses.  Also, during wartime there is a bigger challenge to the currency of the warring nation, and already we see that the dollar has dropped 20 percent in the past year.  Although there are many other reasons for a weak dollar, the war certainly is contributing to the weakness in the dollar.

2003 Ron Paul 19:5
Also, during wartime the country can expect that taxes will go up. I know we are talking about cutting taxes, and I am all for cutting taxes; but in real terms taxes will go up during wartime. And it is inevitable that deficits increase. And right now our deficits are exploding. Our national debt is going up nearly $500 billion per year at an analyzed rate.

2003 Ron Paul 19:6
The other shortcoming economically of wartime is that funds, once they are borrowed, inflated, or taxed, once the government spends these, so much of this expenditure is overseas, and it takes away from domestic spending. So this is a strong negative for the domestic economy. Another thing that arises during wartime so often is the sentiment for protectionism- and a weak economy in wartime will really build an incentive for protectionist measures, and we are starting to see that, which I think is a danger.

2003 Ron Paul 19:7
During wartime, trade is much more difficult; and so if a war comes, we can expect that even our trade balances might get much worse. There are a lot of subjective problems during wartime too. The first thing that goes is confidence.   Right now there is less confidence in the stock market and literally hundreds of billions of dollars lost in the stock market in the last year or two, again, due to other reasons; but the possibility of war contributes to this negative sentiment toward the stock market.

2003 Ron Paul 19:8
It is hard to judge the future. Nobody can know the future because of the unintended consequences of war. We do not know how long the war will last. How much it will spread? So there are a lot of uncertainties about this. There is fear. Fear comes from the potential for war and a lot of confusion. And unfortunately, when wars are not fought for national security reasons, the popularity of the war is questioned- and this may alienate our allies. And I believe we are seeing some of that already.
There is no doubt that during wartime government expands in size and scope.   
And this of course is a great danger. And after war, the government rarely shrinks to its original size.   
It grows. It may shrink a little, but inevitably the size of the government grows because of war.    
This is a danger because when government gets bigger, the individual has to get smaller; therefore,   
it diminishes personal individual liberty.  

2003 Ron Paul 19:9
So these are the costs that we cannot ignore.  We have the cost of potential loss of life, but there are also tremendous economic costs that even the best economists cannot calculate closely.

2003 Ron Paul 19:10
War should always be fought as the very, very last resort. It should never be done casually, but only when absolutely necessary. And when it is, I believe it should be fought to be won.  It should be declared.  It should not be fought under U.N. resolutions or for U.N. resolutions, but for the sovereignty and the safety and the security of this country. It is explicit in our Constitution that necessary wars be declared by the Congress. And that is something that concerns me a great deal because we have not declared war outright since 1945, and if you look carefully, we have not won very many since then.

2003 Ron Paul 19:11
We are lingering in Korea. What a mess! We have been there for 58 years, have spent hundreds of billions of dollars, and we still have achieved nothing- because we went there under U.N. resolutions and we did not fight to victory. The same was true with the first Persian Gulf War.  We went into Iraq without a declaration of war. We went there under the U.N., we are still there, and nobody knows how long we will be there. So there are many costs, some hidden and some overt. But the greatest threat, the greatest cost of war is the threat to individual liberty. So I caution my colleagues that we should move much more cautiously and hope and pray for peace.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 20


March 27, 2003
“Negative Outcomes” Insurance – A Free-Market Approach to the Medical Malpractice

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to introduce the Freedom from Unnecessary Litigation Act. As its title suggests, this bill provides an effective means of ensuring that those harmed during medical treatment receive fair compensation while reducing the burden of costly malpractice litigation on the health care system. This bill achieves its goal by providing a tax credit for “negative outcomes” insurance purchased before medical treatment. The insurance will provide compensation for any negative outcomes of the medical treatment. Patients can receive this insurance without having to go through lengthy litigation and without having to give away a large portion of their award to a trial lawyer.

2003 Ron Paul 20:1
Relying on negative outcomes insurance instead of litigation will also reduce the costs imposed on physicians, other health care providers, and hospitals by malpractice litigation. The Freedom from Unnecessary Litigation Act also promotes effective solutions to the malpractice crisis by making malpractice awards obtained through binding, voluntary arbitration tax-free.

2003 Ron Paul 20:2
The malpractice crisis has contributed to the closing of a maternity ward in Philadelphia and a trauma center in Nevada. Meanwhile, earlier this year, surgeons in West Virginia walked off the job to protest increasing liability rates. These are a few of the examples of how access to quality health care is jeopardized by the epidemic of large (and medically questionable) malpractice awards, and the resulting increase in insurance rates.

2003 Ron Paul 20:3
As is typical of Washington, most of the proposed solutions to the malpractice problem involve unconstitutional usurpations of areas best left to the states. These solutions also ignore the root cause of the litigation crisis: the shift away from treating the doctor-patient relationship as a contractual one to viewing it as one governed by regulations imposed by insurance company functionaries, politicians, government bureaucrats, and trial lawyers. There is no reason why questions of the assessment of liability and compensation cannot be determined by a private contractual agreement between physicians and patients. The Freedom from Unnecessary Litigation Act is designed to take a step toward resolving these problems through private contracts.

2003 Ron Paul 20:4
Using insurance, private contracts, and binding arbitration to resolve medical disputes benefits patients, who receive full compensation in a timelier manner than under the current system. It also benefits physicians and hospitals, which are relieved of the costs associated with litigation. Since it will not cost as much to provide full compensation to an injured patient, these bills should result in a reduction of malpractice premiums. The Freedom from Unnecessary Litigation Act benefits everybody except those trial lawyers who profit from the current system. I hope all my colleagues will help end the malpractice crises while ensuring those harmed by medical injuries receive just compensation by cosponsoring my Freedom from Unnecessary Litigation Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 21


March 27, 2003
Comprehensive Health Care Reform Without Socialized Medicine

2003 Ron Paul 21:1

Mr. Speaker, America faces a crisis in health care. Health care costs continue to rise while physicians and patients struggle under the control of managed-care “gatekeepers.”   Obviously, fundamental health care reform should be one of Congress’ top priorities. 

2003 Ron Paul 21:2
Unfortunately, most health care reform proposals either make marginal changes or exacerbate the problem. This is because they fail to address the root of the problem with health care, which is that government polices encourage excessive reliance on third-party payers. The excessive reliance on third-party payers removes all incentive from individual patients to concern themselves with health care costs. Laws and policies promoting Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs) resulted from a desperate attempt to control spiraling costs. However, instead of promoting an efficient health care system, HMOs further took control over health care away from the individual patient and physician.

2003 Ron Paul 21:3
Returning control over health care to the individual is the key to true health care reform.  This why today I am introducing the Comprehensive Health Care Reform Act. This legislation puts control of health care back into the hands of the individual through tax credits, tax deductions, Medical Savings Accounts, and Flexible Savings Accounts. Specifically, the Comprehensive Health Care Reform Act:

2003 Ron Paul 21:4
A.  Provides all Americans with a tax credit for 100% of health care expenses. The tax credit is fully refundable against both income and payroll taxes- meaning even low-income taxpayers benefit;

2003 Ron Paul 21:5
B.  Allows individuals to roll over unused amounts in cafeteria plans and Flexible Savings Accounts (FSAs);

2003 Ron Paul 21:6
C.  Makes every American eligible for an Archer Medical Savings Account (MSA) and changes the tax laws to increase the benefits of MSAs;

2003 Ron Paul 21:7
D. Repeals the 7.5% threshold for the deduction of medical expenses, thus making all medical expenses tax deductible.

2003 Ron Paul 21:8
By providing a wide range of options, this bill allows individual Americans to choose the method of financing health care that best suits their individual needs. Increasing frustration with the current health care system is leading more and more Americans to embrace this approach to health care reform. For example, a recent poll by the respected Zogby firm showed that over 80% of Americans support providing all Americans with access to a Medical Savings Account. I hope all my colleagues will join this effort to put individuals back in control of health care by cosponsoring the Comprehensive Health Care Reform Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 22


March 27, 2003
HMOs and Federal Health Care Regulations vs. Freedom of Contract

2003 Ron Paul 22:1
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to introduce the Quality Health Care Coalition Act, which takes a first step towards restoring a true free market in health care by restoring the rights of freedom of contract and association to health care professionals. Over the past few years, we have had much debate in Congress about the difficulties medical professionals and patients are having with Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs).  HMOs are devices used by insurance industries to ration health care. While it is politically popular for members of Congress to bash the HMOs and the insurance industry, the growth of HMOs are rooted in past government interventions in the health care market though the HMO Act of 1973, tax code, the Employment Retirement Security Act (ERISA), and federal anti-trust laws. These interventions took control of the health care dollar away from individual patients and providers, thus making it inevitable that HMOs would emerge as a means to control costs.

2003 Ron Paul 22:2
Many of my well-meaning colleagues would deal with the problems created by the HMOs by expanding the federal government’s control over the health care market. These interventions will inevitably drive up the cost of health care and further erode the ability of patents and providers to determine the best health treatments free of government and third-party interference. In contrast, the Quality Health Care Coalition Act addresses the problems associated with HMOs by restoring medical professionals’ freedom to form voluntary organizations for the purpose of negotiating contracts with an HMO or an insurance company.

2003 Ron Paul 22:3
As an OB-GYN with over 30 years in practice, I am well aware of how young physicians coming out of medical school feel compelled to sign contracts with HMOs that may contain clauses compromising their professional integrity. For example, many physicians are contractually forbidden from discussing all available treatment options with their patients because the HMO gatekeeper has deemed certain treatment options too expensive. In my own practice, I have tried hard not to sign contracts with any health insurance company that infringed on my ability to practice medicine in the best   interests of my patients, and I have always counseled my professional colleagues to do the same. Unfortunately, because of the dominance of the HMO in today’s health care market, many health care professionals cannot sustain a medical practice unless they agree to conform their practice to the dictates of HMOs.

2003 Ron Paul 22:4
One way health care professionals can counter the power of the HMOs is to form a voluntary association for the purpose of negotiating with an HMO or an insurance company. However, health care professionals who attempt to form such a group run the risk of persecution under federal anti-trust laws. This not only reduces the ability of health care professionals to negotiate with HMOs on a level playing field, but also constitutes an unconstitutional violation of medical professionals’ freedom of contract and association.

2003 Ron Paul 22:5
Under the Constitution, the federal government has no authority to interfere with the private contracts of American citizens. Furthermore, the prohibitions on contracting contained in the Sherman antitrust laws are based on a flawed economic theory which holds that federal regulators can improve upon market outcomes by restricting the rights of certain market participants deemed too powerful by the government. In fact, anti-trust laws harm consumers by preventing the operation of the free-market, causing prices to rise, quality to suffer, and, as is certainly the case with the relationship between the HMOs and medical professionals, favoring certain industries over others.

2003 Ron Paul 22:6
By restoring the freedom of medical professionals to voluntarily come together to negotiate as a group with HMOs and insurance companies, this bill removes a government-imposed barrier to a true free market in health care. Of course, this bill does not infringe on the rights of health care professionals by forcing them to join a bargaining organization against their will. While Congress should protect the rights of all Americans to join organizations for the purpose of bargaining collectively, Congress also has a moral responsibility to ensure that no worker is forced by law to join or financially support such an organization.

2003 Ron Paul 22:7
Mr. Speaker, it is my hope that Congress will not only remove the restraints on medical professionals’ freedom of contract, but will also empower patients to control their health care by passing my Comprehensive Health Care Reform Act. The Comprehensive Health Care Reform Act puts individuals back in charge of their own health care by expanding access to Medical Savings Accounts and providing Americans with large tax credits and tax deductions for their health care expenses. Putting individuals back in charge of their own health care decisions will enable patients to work with providers to ensure they receive the best possible health care at the lowest possible price. If providers and patients have the ability to form the contractual arrangements that they find most beneficial to them, the HMO monster will wither on the vine without the imposition of new federal regulations on the insurance industry.

2003 Ron Paul 22:8
In conclusion, Mr. Chairman, I urge my colleagues to support the Quality Health Care Coalition Act and restore the freedom of contract and association to America’s health care professionals. I also urge my colleagues to join me in working to promote a true free market in health care by putting patients back in charge of the health care dollar by supporting my Comprehensive Health Care Reform Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 23


April 1, 2003
Don’t Antagonize our Trading Partners

2003 Ron Paul 23:1
Madam Speaker, this week we will be working on the $75 billion supplemental appropriations to pay for the war. Financing the war is not as simple as it appears. It involves more than just passing a piece of legislation labeled as support for the troops.

2003 Ron Paul 23:2
It has now been fashionable to bash France and Germany and other friends if they are less enthusiastic for the war than we think they should be. Yet foreign corporations provide millions of jobs for American citizens. French companies alone employ over 400,000. There is a practical reason why offending the French and others may backfire on us.

2003 Ron Paul 23:3
In 2002 we earned $11.9 billion less from our investments overseas than foreigners did here. This is not a sign of financial strength. A negative balance on the income account contributes to the $500 billion annual current account deficit. Since 1985 when we became a deficit nation, we have acquired a foreign debt of approximately $2.8 trillion, the world’s largest. No nation can long sustain a debt that continues to expand at a rate greater than 5 percent of the GDP. This means we borrowed more than $1.4 billion every day to keep the borrowing binge going. This only can be maintained until foreigners get tired of taking and holding our dollars and buying our debt. Bashing the French and others will only hasten the day that sets off the train of economic events that will please no one.

2003 Ron Paul 23:4
In thinking about providing funds for the war and overall military expenditures, not only must every dollar be borrowed from overseas, but an additional $150 billion each year as well. The current account deficit is now 44 percent greater than the military budget and represents the amount we must borrow to balance the accounts. The bottom line is that our international financial condition is dire and being made worse by current international events.

2003 Ron Paul 23:5
It is true that military might gives a boost to a nation’s currency; but this is not permanent if fiscal and monetary policies are abused. Currently, our budget deficits are exploding, as there is no restraint on spending.

2003 Ron Paul 23:6
No one can guarantee permanent military superiority.

2003 Ron Paul 23:7
The dollar has already significantly weakened this past year, and this trend will surely continue. A weaker dollar requires that we pay more for everything we buy overseas. Foreign borrowing will eventually become more difficult, and this will in time cause interest rates to rise. Be assured that domestic price inflation will accelerate. Economic law dictates that these events will cause the recession to linger and deepen.

2003 Ron Paul 23:8
My humble advice, consider being nicer to our friends and allies. We need them more than we can imagine to finance our war efforts. There is more to it than passing the supplemental appropriation. Besides, we need time to get our financial house in order. Antagonizing our trading partners can only make that task that much more complicated.

2003 Ron Paul 23:9
The day will come when true monetary reform will be required. Printing money to finance war and welfare can never be a panacea.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 24


April 2, 2003
No Federal Funding for Abortion!

2003 Ron Paul 24:1
Mr. Speaker, I rise today to introduce three bills relating to abortion. First, the Freedom of Conscience Act of 2003 prohibits any federal official from expending any federal funds for any population control or population planning program or any family planning activity. It is immoral to force the American taxpayers to subsidize programs and practices they find morally abhorrent.

2003 Ron Paul 24:2
Second, I rise to introduce the Partial-birth Abortion Funding Ban Act of 2003. This bill prohibits federal officials from paying any federal funds to any individual or entity that performs partial-birth abortions. The taxpayer must not be forced to fund this barbaric procedure.

2003 Ron Paul 24:3
Finally, my Life-Protecting Judicial Limitation Act of 2003 provides that the inferior courts of the United States do not have jurisdiction to hear abortion-related cases. Congress must use the authority granted to it in Article 3, Section 1 of the Constitution. The district courts of the United States, as well as the United States Court of Federal Claims, should not have the authority to hear these types of cases.

2003 Ron Paul 24:4
Mr. Speaker, it is my hope that my colleagues will join me in support of these three bills. By following the Constitution and using the power granted to the Congress by this document, we can restore freedom of conscience and the sanctity of human life.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 25


April 2, 2003
The First Amendment Protects Religious Speech
Mr. Speaker, I rise to introduce legislation restoring First amendment protections of religion and religious speech. For fifty years, the personal religious freedom of this nation’s citizens has been infringed upon by courts that misread and distort the First amendment. The framers of the Constitution never in their worst nightmares imagined that the words, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech.......” would be used to ban children from praying in school, prohibit courthouses from displaying the Ten Commandments, or prevent citizens from praying before football games. The original meaning of the First amendment was clear on these two points: The federal government cannot enact laws establishing one religious denomination over another, and the federal government cannot forbid mention of religion, including the Ten Commandments and references to God.

2003 Ron Paul 25:1
In case after case, the Supreme Court has used the infamous “separation of church and state” metaphor to uphold court decisions that allow the federal government to intrude upon and deprive citizens of their religious liberty. This “separation” doctrine is based upon a phrase taken out of context from a letter written by Thomas Jefferson to the Danbury Baptists on January 1, 1802. In the letter, Jefferson simply reassures the Baptists that the First amendment would preclude an intrusion by the federal government into religious matters between denominations. It is ironic and sad that a letter defending the principle that the federal government must stay out of religious affairs. Should be used two hundred years later to justify the Supreme Court telling a child that he cannot pray in school!

2003 Ron Paul 25:2
The Court completely disregards the original meaning and intent of the First amendment. It has interpreted the establishment clause to preclude prayer and other religious speech in a public place, thereby violating the free exercise clause of the very same First amendment. Therefore, it is incumbent upon Congress to correct this error, and to perform its duty to support and defend the Constitution. My legislation would restore First amendment protections of religion and speech by removing all religious freedom-related cases from federal district court jurisdiction, as well as from federal claims court jurisdiction. The federal government has no constitutional authority to reach its hands in the religious affairs of its citizens or of the several states.

2003 Ron Paul 25:3
As James Madison said, “There are more instances of the abridgement of the freedom of the people by the gradual and silent encroachment of those in power, than by violent and sudden usurpation.” I sincerely hope that my colleagues will fight against the “gradual and silent encroachment” of the courts upon our nation’s religious liberties by supporting this bill.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 26


April 16, 2003
Repeal the So-Called “Medical Privacy Rule”

2003 Ron Paul 26:1
Mr. Speaker, I rise to introduce the Patient Privacy Act. This bill repeals the misnamed Medical Privacy regulation, which went into effect on April 14 and actually destroys individual medical privacy. The Patient Privacy Act also repeals those sections of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 authorizing the establishment of a “standard unique health care identifier” for all Americans, as well as prohibiting the use of federal funds to develop or implement a database containing personal health information. Both of these threats to medical freedom grew out of the Clinton-era craze to nationalize health care as much as politically possible.

2003 Ron Paul 26:2
Establishment of a uniform medical identifier would allow federal bureaucrats to track every citizen’s medical history from cradle to grave. Furthermore, as explained in more detail below, it is possible that every medical professional, hospital, and Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) in the country would be able to access an individual citizen’s records simply by entering an identifier into a health care database.

2003 Ron Paul 26:3
The dangers to liberty inherent in the “uniform health identifier” are magnified by the so-called “medical privacy” regulation. Many things in Washington are misnamed, however, this regulation may be the most blatant case of false advertising I have come across in all my years in Congress. Rather than protecting the individual’s right to medical privacy, these regulations empower government officials to determine how much medical privacy an individual “needs.” This one-size-fits-all approach ignores the fact that different people may prefer different levels of privacy. Some individuals may be willing to exchange a great deal of their personal medical information in order to obtain certain benefits, such as lower-priced care or having information targeted to their medical needs sent to them in a timely manner. Others may forgo those benefits in order to limit the number of people who have access to their medical history. Federal bureaucrats cannot possibly know, much less meet, the optimal level of privacy for each individual. In contrast, the free market allows individuals to obtain the level of privacy protection they desire.

2003 Ron Paul 26:4
The so-called medical privacy regulations and uniform health identifier scheme not only reduce an individual’s ability to determine who has access to his personal medical information, but actually threaten medical privacy and constitutionally-protected liberties. For example, these regulations allow law enforcement and other government officials access to a citizen’s private medical records without having to obtain a search warrant.

2003 Ron Paul 26:5
Allowing government officials to access a private person’s medical records without a warrant is a violation of the Fourth amendment to the United States Constitution, which protects American citizens from warrantless searches by government officials. The requirement that law enforcement officials obtain a warrant from a judge before searching private documents is one of the fundamental protections against abuse of the government’s power to seize an individual’s private documents. While the Fourth Amendment has been interpreted to allow warrantless searches in emergency situations, it is hard to conceive of a situation where law enforcement officials would be unable to obtain a warrant before electronic medical records would be destroyed.

2003 Ron Paul 26:6
Mr. Speaker, these regulations also require health care providers to give medical records to the federal government for inclusion in a federal health care data system. Such a system would contain all citizens’ personal health care information, accessible to anyone who knows the individual’s unique health identifier.  History shows that when the government collects this type of personal information, the inevitable result is the abuse of citizens’ privacy and liberty by unscrupulous government officials. The only fail-safe privacy protection is for the government not to collect and store this type of personal information.

2003 Ron Paul 26:7
In addition to law enforcement, these so-called privacy protection regulations create a privileged class of people with a federally-guaranteed right to see an individual’s medical records without the individual’s consent. My medical office recently received a Model “Privacy Act Compliance” form. This three-page form lists over 20 situations where medical information may be disclosed without individual consent. Medical information may be disclosed to attorneys, business associates of the provider, and federal agencies conducting “health oversight activities.” Medical information may also be divulged without consent to insurance companies and medical researchers!

2003 Ron Paul 26:8
Medical researchers claim to be able to protect the autonomy of their unwilling subjects, but the fact is that allowing third parties to use medical records for research purposes increases the risk of inadvertent identification of personal medical information. I am aware of at least one incident where a man had his identity revealed when his medical records were used without his consent. As a result, many people in his community discovered details of his medical history that he wished to keep private!

2003 Ron Paul 26:9
Forcing individuals to divulge medical information without their consent also runs afoul of the Fifth amendment’s prohibition on taking private property for public use without just compensation. After all, people do have a legitimate property interest in their private information. Therefore, restrictions on an individual’s ability to control the dissemination of their private information represents a massive regulatory taking. The takings clause is designed to prevent this type of sacrifice of individual property rights for the “greater good.”

2003 Ron Paul 26:10
In a free society such as the one envisioned by those who drafted the Constitution, the federal government should never force a citizen to divulge personal information to advance “important social goals.”  Rather, it should be up to individuals, not the government, to determine what social goals are important enough to warrant allowing others access to their personal property, including their personal information. To the extent these regulations sacrifice individual rights in the name of a bureaucratically determined common good, they are incompatible with a free society and a constitutional government.

2003 Ron Paul 26:11
As an OB-GYN with more than 30 years experience in private practice, I am very concerned by the threat to medical practice posed by these privacy regulations and the unique health identifier scheme. The confidential physician-patient relationship is the basis of good health care.

2003 Ron Paul 26:12
Oftentimes, effective treatment depends on the patient’s ability to place absolute trust in his doctor. The legal system has acknowledged the importance of maintaining physician-patient confidentiality by granting physicians a privilege not to divulge confidential patient information.

2003 Ron Paul 26:13
I ask my colleagues to consider how comfortable you would be confiding an embarrassing physical or emotional problem to your physicians if you knew that any and all information given your doctor may be placed in a government database or seen by medical researchers, handed over to government agents without so much as a simple warrant or accessed by anyone who happens to know your unique health identifier?

2003 Ron Paul 26:14
By now it should be clear to every member of Congress that the American people do not want their health information recorded on a database, and they do not wish to be assigned a unique health identifier. According to a survey by the respected Gallup Company, 91 percent of Americans oppose assigning Americans a unique health care identifier, while 92 percent of the people oppose allowing government agencies the unrestrained power to view private medical records and 88 percent of Americans oppose placing private health care information in a national database. Congress has acknowledge this public concern by including language forbidding the expenditure of funds to implement or develop a medical identifier in the federal budget for the past five fiscal years. Rather than continuing to extend the prohibition on funding for another year, Congress should finally obey the wishes of the American people by repealing the authorization of the individual medical ID this year as well as repealing these dangerous medical privacy rules.

2003 Ron Paul 26:15
Mr. Speaker, the misnamed medical privacy regulations and the scheme to assign all Americans a unique health care identifier violates the Fourth and Fifth amendments by allowing law enforcement officials and government favored special interests to seize medical records without an individual’s consent or a warrant. Federal supervision of who can access medical records, combined with a federally-assigned medical ID, facilitate the creation of a federal database containing the health care data of every American citizen. These developments could undermine the doctor-patient relationship and thus worsen the health care of millions of Americans. I, therefore, call on my colleagues to join me in repealing these threats to privacy and quality health care by cosponsoring the Patient Privacy Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 27


April 29, 2003
America National Sovereignty vs. UN “International Law” – Time for Congress to Vote

2003 Ron Paul 27:1
Mr. Speaker, I rise to urge the leadership of this body to bring a very important vote to the House floor.   I recently reintroduced HR 1146, the American Sovereignty Restoration Act, which would end our participation in the United Nations.  Millions of Americans have begun to question why we continue to spend $300 million each year funding and housing an organization that is actively hostile to American interests.   Surely Congress, which routinely spends 15 minutes renaming post offices, can spare 15 minutes to vote on this fundamental issue of American sovereignty.

2003 Ron Paul 27:2
Obviously many Americans now want to get out of the UN because they resent its refusal to sanction our war in Iraq.   The administration deserves some credit for ultimately upholding the principle that American national security is not a matter of international consensus, and that we don’t need UN authorization to act.  But the administration sent mixed signals by doing everything possible to obtain such authorization, and by citing UN resolutions as justification for our actions.  The message seems to be that the UN is credible when we control it and it does what we want, but lacks all credibility when it refuses to do our bidding.

2003 Ron Paul 27:3
Perhaps it’s time to stop trying to manipulate the UN, and start asserting our national sovereignty.

2003 Ron Paul 27:4
If we do not, rest assured that the UN will continue to interfere not only in our nation’s foreign policy matters, but in our domestic policies as well.  UN globalists are not satisfied by meddling only in international disputes.  They increasingly want to influence our domestic environmental, trade, labor, tax, and gun laws.  UN global planners fully intend to expand the organization into a true world government, complete with taxes, courts, and possibly a standing army.  This is not an alarmist statement; these goals are readily promoted on the UN’s own website.  UN planners do not care about national sovereignty; in fact they are openly opposed to it.  They correctly view it as an obstacle to their plans.  They simply aren’t interested in our Constitution and republican form of government.

2003 Ron Paul 27:5
The choice is very clear: we either follow the Constitution or submit to UN global governance.  American national sovereignty cannot survive if we allow our domestic laws to be crafted or even influenced by an international body.  This needs to be stated publicly more often.  If we continue down the UN path, America as we know it will cease to exist.

2003 Ron Paul 27:6
Noted constitutional scholar Herb Titus has thoroughly researched the United Nations and its purported “authority.”   Titus explains that the UN Charter is not a treaty at all, but rather a blueprint for supranational government that directly violates the Constitution.  As such, the Charter is neither politically nor legally binding upon the American people or government.  The UN has no authority to make “laws” that bind American citizens, because it does not derive its powers from the consent of the American people.   We need to stop speaking of UN resolutions and edicts as if they represented legitimate laws or treaties.  They do not.

2003 Ron Paul 27:7
In conclusion, Mr. Speaker, I’m merely asking House leadership to schedule vote on HR 1146.   Americans deserve to know how their representatives stand on the critical issue of American sovereignty.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 28


May 6, 2003
The False Tax Cut Debate

2003 Ron Paul 28:1
The current tax cut debate is more about politics than serious economics.  Both sides use demagoguery but don’t propose significant tax cuts.  The benefits that could come from the current tax cut proposal unfortunately are quite small and not immediate. 

2003 Ron Paul 28:2
Some say tax cuts raise revenues by increasing economic activity, thus providing Congress with even more money to spend.   Others say lowering taxes simply lowers revenues and increases deficits.

2003 Ron Paul 28:3
Some say we must target tax cuts to the poor and middle class so they will spend the money.  Others say tax cuts should be targeted to the rich so they can invest and create jobs.

2003 Ron Paul 28:4
We must accept that it’s hard to give tax cuts to people who don’t pay taxes.  But, we could, if we wanted, cut payroll taxes for lower income workers.

2003 Ron Paul 28:5
The truth is, government officials can’t know what consumers and investors will do if they get a tax cut.  Plugging tax cut data into a computer and expecting an accurate projection of the economic outcome is about as reliable as asking Congress to project government surpluses.

2003 Ron Paul 28:6
Two important points are purposely ignored:       1.  The money people earn is their own and they have a moral right to keep            as much of it as possible.  It is not Congress’ money to spend.

2003 Ron Paul 28:7
2.     Government spending is the problem!  Taking a big chunk of the people’s earnings out of the economy, whether through taxes or borrowing, is always harmful.

2003 Ron Paul 28:8
Taxation is more honest and direct, and the harm is less hidden.  Borrowing, especially since the Federal Reserve creates credit out of thin air to loan to big spenders in Congress, is more deceitful.   It hides the effects and delays the consequences.  But over the long term this method of financing is much more dangerous.

2003 Ron Paul 28:9
The process by which the Fed monetizes debt and accommodates Congress contributes to, if not causes, most of our problems.

2003 Ron Paul 28:10
This process of government financing:

2003 Ron Paul 28:11
 1.        Generates the “business” cycle and thus increases unemployment;

2003 Ron Paul 28:12
       2.   Destroys the value of the dollar and thus causes price inflation;

2003 Ron Paul 28:13
       3.   Encourages deficits by reducing restraints on congressional spending;

2003 Ron Paul 28:14
       4.   Encourages an increase in the current account deficit (the dollar being the reserve currency) and causes huge foreign indebtedness;

2003 Ron Paul 28:15
       5.   Reflects a philosophy of instant gratification that says, “Live for the pleasures of today and have future generations pay the bills.”

2003 Ron Paul 28:16

2003 Ron Paul 28:17
Two points to remember:

2003 Ron Paul 28:18
1.      Whether or not people can keep what they earn is first a moral issue and second an economic issue.  Tax cuts should never be referred to as a “cost to government.”   Tax cuts should be much bigger and come much sooner for everyone.

2003 Ron Paul 28:19
  2.   The real issue is total spending by government , yet this issue is ignored or politicized by both sides of the aisle in Congress.

2003 Ron Paul 28:20
The political discussion about whether to cut taxes avoids the real issues and instead degenerates into charges of class and party warfare, with both sides lusting for power.

2003 Ron Paul 28:21
Of course the real issue for the ages, namely “What is the proper role for government in a constitutional republic?” is totally ignored.   And yet the bigger question is:  “Are the American people determined they still wish to have a constitutional republic?”

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 29


May 7, 2003
The Agriculture Education Freedom Act

2003 Ron Paul 29:1
Mr. Speaker, I rise to introduce the Agriculture Education Freedom Act. This bill addresses a great injustice being perpetrated by the federal government on those youngsters who participate in programs such as 4-H or the Future Farmers of America. Under current tax law, children are forced to pay federal income tax when they sell livestock they have raised as part of an agricultural education program.

2003 Ron Paul 29:2
Think about this for a moment. These kids are trying to better themselves, earn some money, save some money- and what does Congress do? We pick on these kids by taxing them. It is truly amazing that with all the hand-wringing in Congress over the alleged need to further restrict liberty and grow the size of government “for the children” we would continue to tax young people who are trying to lead responsible lives and prepare for the future. Even if the serious social problems today’s youth face could be solved by new federal bureaucracies and programs, it is still unfair to pick on those kids who are trying to do the right thing.

2003 Ron Paul 29:3
These children are not even old enough to vote, yet we are forcing them to pay taxes! What ever happened to no taxation without representation? No wonder young people are so cynical about government!

2003 Ron Paul 29:4
It is time we stopped taxing youngsters who are trying to earn money for college by selling livestock they have raised through their participation in programs such as 4-H or Future Farmers of America. Therefore, I call on my colleagues to join me in supporting the Agriculture Education Freedom Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 30


June 3, 2003
The Flag Burning Amendment

2003 Ron Paul 30:1
Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding me the time. Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of the rule, although unenthusiastically. I am not too excited about this process, and certainly I am not very excited about this proposal to amend the Constitution. As for my viewpoint, I see the amendment as very unnecessary and very dangerous. I want to make a few points along those lines.

2003 Ron Paul 30:2
It has been inferred too often by those who promote this amendment that those who oppose it are less patriotic, and I think that is unfair. And an earlier statement was made by the gentleman from Florida that everybody here is patriotic and nobody’s patriotism should be challenged.

2003 Ron Paul 30:3
It has also been said that if one does not support this amendment to the flag that they are disloyal to the military, and that cannot possibly be true. I have served 5 years in the military, and I do not feel less respectful of the military because I have a different interpretation on how we should handle the flag. But nevertheless, I think what we are doing here is very serious business because it deals with more than just the flag.

2003 Ron Paul 30:4
First off, I think what we are trying to achieve through an amendment to the Constitution is to impose values on people- that is, teach people patriotism with our definition of what patriotism is. But we cannot force values on people; we cannot say there will be a law that a person will do such and such because it is disrespectful if they do not, and therefore, we are going to make sure that people have these values that we want to teach. Values in a free society are accepted voluntarily, not through coercion, and certainly not by law, because the law implies that there are guns, and that means the federal government and others will have to enforce these laws.

2003 Ron Paul 30:5
Here we are, amending the Constitution for a noncrisis. How many cases of flag burning have we seen? I have seen it on television a few times in the last year, but it was done on foreign soil, by foreigners, who had become angry at us over our policies, but I do not see that many Americans in the streets burning up flags. There were probably a lot more in previous decades, but in recent years it averages out to about eight, about eight cases a year, and they are not all that horrendous. It involves more vandalism, teenagers taking flags and desecrating the flag and maybe burning it, and there are local laws against that.

2003 Ron Paul 30:6
This is all so unnecessary. There are already laws against vandalism. There are state laws that say they cannot do it and they can be prosecuted. So this is overkill.

2003 Ron Paul 30:7
As a matter of fact, the Supreme Court has helped to create this. I know a lot of people depend on the Supreme Court to protect us, but in many ways, I think the Supreme Court has hurt us. So I agree with those who are promoting this amendment that the Supreme Court overreacted, because I think the States should have many more prerogatives than they do. Many states have these laws, and I believe that we should have a Supreme Court that would allow more solutions to occur at the state level. They would be imperfect, no doubt, it would not be perfect protection of liberty by state laws. But let me tell my colleagues, when we come here as politicians and superpatriots and we pass amendments to the Constitution, that will be less than perfect, then it will be just like the Supreme Court- a poor national solution.

2003 Ron Paul 30:8
It is a ruling for everyone, and if we make a mistake, it affects everybody in every state, and that is what I am afraid we are doing here.

2003 Ron Paul 30:9
The First Amendment has been brought up on several occasions, and I am sure it will be mentioned much more in general debate. This amendment does not directly violate the First Amendment, but what it does, it gives Congress the authority to write laws that will violate the First Amendment, and this is where the trouble is. Nothing but confusion and litigation can result.

2003 Ron Paul 30:10
Mr. Speaker, I do not believe much good will come of it. A lot of good intentions are put into the effort, but I see no real benefit.

2003 Ron Paul 30:11
It was mentioned earlier that those who supported campaign finance laws were inconsistent. And others would say that we do not have to worry about the First amendment when we are dealing with the flag amendments. But I would suggest there is another position. Why can we not be for the First amendment when it comes to campaign finance reform and not ask the government to regulate the way we spend our money and advertise, while at the same time supporting the First amendment here?

2003 Ron Paul 30:12
It seems that consistency is absent in this debate.

2003 Ron Paul 30:13
It is said by the chairman of the committee that he does not want to hear much more about the First amendment. We have done it before, so therefore it must be okay. But we should not give up that easily.

2003 Ron Paul 30:14
He suggested that we have amended the Constitution before when the courts have ruled a certain way. And he is absolutely right, we can do that and we have done that. But to use the 16th amendment as a beautiful example of how the Congress solves problems, I would expect the same kind of dilemma coming out of this amendment as we have out of the 16th amendment which, by the way, has been questioned by some historians as not being correctly ratified.

2003 Ron Paul 30:15
I think one of our problems has been that we have drifted away from the rule of law, we have drifted away from saying that laws ought to be clear and precise and we ought to all have a little interpretation of the laws.

2003 Ron Paul 30:16
The gentleman earlier had said that there are laws against slander so therefore we do violate the First amendment. Believe me, I have never read or heard about a legislative body or a judge who argued that you can lie and commit fraud under the First amendment. But the First amendment does say “Congress shall write no laws.”  That is precise. So even the laws dealing with fraud and slander should be written by the States. This is not a justification for us to write an amendment that says Congress shall write laws restricting expression through the desecration of the flag.

2003 Ron Paul 30:17
This amendment, as written so far, does not cause the conflict. It will be the laws that will be written and then we will have to decide what desecration is and many other things.

2003 Ron Paul 30:18
Earlier in the debate it was said that an individual may well be unpatriotic if he voted against a Defense appropriation bill. I have voted against the Defense appropriation bill because too much money in the Defense budget goes to militarism that does not really protect our country. I do not believe that is being unpatriotic.

2003 Ron Paul 30:19
Mr. Speaker, let me summarize why I oppose this Constitutional amendment. I have myself served 5 years in the military, and I have great respect for the symbol of our freedom. I salute the flag, and I pledge to the flag. I also support overriding the Supreme Court case that overturned State laws prohibiting flag burning. Under the Constitutional principle of federalism, questions such as whether or not Texas should prohibit flag burning are strictly up to the people of Texas, not the United States Supreme Court. Thus, if this amendment simply restored the state’s authority to ban flag burning, I would enthusiastically support it.

2003 Ron Paul 30:20
However, I cannot support an amendment to give Congress new power to prohibit flag burning. I served my country to protect our freedoms and to protect our Constitution. I believe very sincerely that today we are undermining to some degree that freedom that we have had all these many years.

2003 Ron Paul 30:21
Mr. Speaker, we have some misfits who on occasion burn the flag. We all despise this behavior, but the offensive conduct of a few does not justify making an exception to the First amendment protections of political speech the majority finds offensive. According to the pro-flag amendment Citizens Flag Alliance, there has been only 16 documented cases of flag burning in the last two years, and the majority of those cases involved vandalism or some other activity that is already punishable by local law enforcement!

2003 Ron Paul 30:22
Let me emphasize how the First Amendment is written, “Congress shall make no law.” That was the spirit of our Nation at that time: “Congress shall make no laws.”

2003 Ron Paul 30:23
Unfortunately, Congress has long since disregarded the original intent of the Founders and has written a lot of laws regulating private property and private conduct. But I would ask my colleagues to remember that every time we write a law to control private behavior, we imply that somebody has to arrive with a gun, because if you desecrate the flag, you have to punish that person. So how do you do that? You send an agent of the government, perhaps an employee of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Flags, to arrest him. This is in many ways patriotism with a gun – if your actions do not fit the official definition of a “patriot,” we will send somebody to arrest you.

2003 Ron Paul 30:24
Fortunately, Congress has models of flag desecration laws. For example, Saddam Hussein made desecration of the Iraq flag a criminal offense punishable by up to 10 years in prison.

2003 Ron Paul 30:25
It is assumed that many in the military support this amendment, but in fact there are veterans who have been great heroes in war on both sides of this issue. I would like to quote a past national commander of the American Legion, Keith Kreul. He said:

2003 Ron Paul 30:26
“Our Nation was not founded on devotion to symbolic idols, but on principles, beliefs and ideals expressed in the Constitution and its Bill of Rights. American veterans who have protected our banner in battle have not done so to protect a golden calf. Instead, they carried the banner forward with reverence for what it represents, our beliefs and freedom for all. Therein lies the beauty of our flag. A patriot cannot be created by legislation.”

2003 Ron Paul 30:27
Secretary of State, former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, and two-time winner of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, Colin Powell has also expressed opposition to amending the constitution in this manner:

2003 Ron Paul 30:28
“I would not amend that great shield of democracy to hammer out a few miscreants. The flag will be flying proudly long after they have slunk away.”

2003 Ron Paul 30:29
Mr. Speaker, this amendment will not even reach the majority of cases of flag burning. When we see flag burning on television, it is usually not American citizens, but foreigners who have strong objections to what we do overseas, burning the flag. This is what I see on television and it is the conduct that most angers me.

2003 Ron Paul 30:30
One of the very first laws that Red China passed upon assuming control of Hong Kong was to make flag burning illegal. Since that time, they have prosecuted some individuals for flag burning. Our State Department keeps records of how often the Red Chinese persecute people for burning the Chinese flag, as it considers those prosecutions an example of how the Red Chinese violate human rights. Those violations are used against Red China in the argument that they should not have most-favored-nation status. There is just a bit of hypocrisy among those members who claim this amendment does not interfere with fundamental liberties, yet are critical of Red China for punishing those who burn the Chinese flag.

2003 Ron Paul 30:31
Mr. Speaker, this is ultimately an attack on private property. Freedom of speech and freedom of expression depend on property. We do not have freedom of expression of our religion in other people’s churches; it is honored and respected because we respect the ownership of the property. The property conveys the right of free expression, as a newspaper would or a radio station. Once Congress limits property rights, for any cause, no matter how noble, it limits freedom.

2003 Ron Paul 30:32
Some claim that this is not an issue of private property rights because the flag belongs to the country. The flag belongs to everybody. But if you say that, you are a collectivist. That means you believe everybody owns everything. So why do American citizens have to spend money to obtain, and maintain, a flag if the flag is community owned? If your neighbor, or the Federal Government, owns a flag, even without this amendment you do not have the right to go and burn that flag. If you are causing civil disturbances, you are liable for your conduct under state and local laws. But this whole idea that there could be a collective ownership of the flag is erroneous.

2003 Ron Paul 30:33
Finally, Mr. Speaker, I wish to point out that by using the word “desecration,” which is traditionally reserved for religious symbols, the authors of this amendment are placing the symbol of the state on the same plane as the symbol of the church. The practical effect of this is to either lower religious symbols to the level of the secular state, or raise the state symbol to the status of a holy icon. Perhaps this amendment harkens back to the time when the state was seen as interchangeable with the church. In any case, those who believe we have “No king but Christ” should be troubled by this amendment.

2003 Ron Paul 30:34
We must be interested in the spirit of our Constitution. We must be interested in the principles of liberty. I therefore urge my colleagues to oppose this amendment. Instead, my colleagues should work to restore the rights of the individual states to ban flag burning, free from unconstitutional interference by the Supreme Court.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 31


June 4, 2003
The Partial Birth Abortion Ban

2003 Ron Paul 31:1
Mr. Speaker, like many Americans, I am greatly concerned about abortion.   Abortion on demand is no doubt the most serious sociopolitical problem of our age.  The lack of respect for life that permits abortion significantly contributes to our violent culture and our careless attitude toward liberty.  As an obstetrician, I know that partial birth abortion is never a necessary medical procedure.  It is a gruesome, uncivilized solution to a social problem.

2003 Ron Paul 31:2
Whether a civilized society treats human life with dignity or contempt determines the outcome of that civilization.  Reaffirming the importance of the sanctity of life is crucial for the continuation of a civilized society.  There is already strong evidence that we are indeed on the slippery slope toward euthanasia and human experimentation.  Although the real problem lies within the hearts and minds of the people, the legal problems of protecting life stem from the ill-advised Roe v. Wade ruling, a ruling that constitutionally should never have occurred.

2003 Ron Paul 31:3
The best solution, of course, is not now available to us.  That would be a Supreme Court that recognizes that for all criminal laws, the several states retain jurisdiction.  Something that Congress can do is remove the issue from the jurisdiction of the lower federal courts, so that states can deal with the problems surrounding abortion, thus helping to reverse some of the impact of Roe v. Wade.

2003 Ron Paul 31:4
Unfortunately, H.R. 760 takes a different approach, one that is not only constitutionally flawed, but flawed in principle, as well.  Though I will vote to ban the horrible partial-birth abortion procedure, I fear that the language used in this bill does not further the pro-life cause, but rather cements fallacious principles into both our culture and legal system.

2003 Ron Paul 31:5
For example, 14G in the “Findings” section of this bill states, “...such a prohibition [upon the partial-birth abortion procedure] will draw a bright line that clearly distinguishes abortion and infanticide...” The question I pose in response is this: Is not the fact that life begins at conception the main tenet advanced by the pro-life community?  By stating that we draw a “bright line” between abortion and infanticide, I fear that we simply reinforce the dangerous idea underlying Roe v. Wade, which is the belief that we as human beings can determine which members of the human family are “expendable,” and which are not.

2003 Ron Paul 31:6
Another problem with this bill is its citation of the interstate commerce clause as a justification for a federal law banning partial-birth abortion.  This greatly stretches the definition of interstate commerce.  The abuse of both the interstate commerce clause and the general welfare clause is precisely the reason our federal government no longer conforms to constitutional dictates but, instead, balloons out of control in its growth and scope.  H.R. 760 inadvertently justifies federal government intervention into every medical procedure through the gross distortion of the interstate commerce clause.

2003 Ron Paul 31:7
H.R. 760 also depends heavily upon a “distinction” made by the Court in both Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, which establishes that a child within the womb is not protected under law, but one outside of the womb is.   By depending upon this illogical “distinction,” I fear that H.R. 760, as I stated before, ingrains the principles of Roe v. Wade into our justice system, rather than refutes them as it should.

2003 Ron Paul 31:8
Despite its severe flaws, this bill nonetheless has the possibility of saving innocent human life, and I will vote in favor of it.  I fear, though, that when the pro-life community uses the arguments of the opposing side to advance its agenda, it does more harm than good.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 32


June 4, 2003
Pro-Life Action Must Originate from Principle.

2003 Ron Paul 32:1
As an obstetrician who has delivered over 4000 children, I have long been concerned with the rights of unborn people.  I believe this is the greatest moral issue of our time.   The very best of the western intellectual tradition has understood the critical link between moral and political action.  Each of these disciplines should strongly inform and support the other.

2003 Ron Paul 32:2
I have become increasingly concerned over the years that the pro-life movement I so strongly support is getting further off track, both politically and morally.  I sponsored the original pro-life amendment, which used a constitutional approach to solve the crisis of federalization of abortion law by the courts.   The pro-life movement was with me and had my full support and admiration.

2003 Ron Paul 32:3
Those who cherish unborn life have become frustrated by our inability to overturn or significantly curtail Roe v. Wade.  Because of this, attempts were made to fight against abortion using political convenience rather than principle.  There is nothing wrong per se with fighting winnable battles, but a danger exists when political pragmatism requires the pro-life movement to surrender important moral and political principles. 

2003 Ron Paul 32:4
When we surrender constitutional principles, we do untold damage to the moral underpinnings on which our Constitution and entire system of government rest.  Those underpinnings are the inalienable right to life, liberty, and property.  Commenting upon the link between our most important rights, Thomas Jefferson said   “The God which gave us life gave us at the same time liberty.   The hands of force may destroy but can never divide these.”   

2003 Ron Paul 32:5
M. Stanton Evans further explained the link between our form of government and the rights it protects when he wrote, “The genius of the Constitution is its division of powers-summed up in that clause reserving to the several states, or the people, all powers not expressly granted to the federal government.”

2003 Ron Paul 32:6
Pro-lifers should be fiercely loyal to this system of federalism, because the very same Constitution that created the federal system also asserts the inalienable right to life.  In this way, our constitutional system closely links federalism to the fundamental moral rights to life, liberty, and property.  For our Founders it was no exaggeration to say federalism is the means by which life, as well as liberty and property, are protected in this nation.   This is why the recent direction of the pro-life cause is so disturbing.

2003 Ron Paul 32:7
Pro-life forces have worked for the passage of bills that disregard the federal system, such as the Unborn Victims of Violence Act, the federal cloning ban, and the Child Custody Protection Act.  Each of these bills rested on specious constitutional grounds and undermined the federalism our Founders recognized and intended as the greatest protection of our most precious rights.

2003 Ron Paul 32:8
Each of these bills transfers to the federal government powers constitutionally retained by the states, thus upsetting the separation and balance of powers that federalism was designed to guarantee.  To undermine federalism is to indirectly surrender the very principle upon which the protection of our inalienable right to life depends.

2003 Ron Paul 32:9
The worst offender of federalism is the so-called Unborn Victims of Violence Act, which not only indirectly surrenders the pro-life principle but actually directly undercuts the right to life by granting a specific exemption to abortionists !  This exemption essentially allows some to take life with the sanction of federal law.  By supporting this legislation, pro-lifers are expressly condoning a legal exemption for abortionists- showing just how far astray some in the pro-life community have gone.

2003 Ron Paul 32:10
Even the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act, which is an integral part of the current pro-life agenda, presents a dilemma.  While I have always supported this Act and plan to do so in the future, I realize that it raises questions of federalism because authority over criminal law is constitutionally retained by the states.  The only reason a federal law has any legitimacy in this area is that the Supreme Court took it upon itself to federalize abortion via Roe v. Wade.  Accordingly, wrestling the abortion issue from the federal courts and putting it back in the hands of the elected legislature comports with the Founder’s view of the separation of powers that protects our rights to life, liberty, and property.

2003 Ron Paul 32:11
Given these dilemmas, what should those of us in the pro-life community do?  First, we must return to constitutional principles and proclaim them proudly.  We must take a principled approach that recognizes both moral and political principles, and accepts the close relationship between them.  Legislatively, we should focus our efforts on building support to overturn Roe v. Wade.  Ideally this would be done in a fashion that allows states to again ban or regulate abortion.  State legislatures have always had proper jurisdiction over issues like abortion and cloning; the pro-life movement should recognize that jurisdiction and not encroach upon it.  The alternative is an outright federal ban on abortion, done properly via a constitutional amendment that does no violence to our way of government.

2003 Ron Paul 32:12
If the next version of the Partial Birth Abortion Ban act reads like past versions in the House, I will likely support it despite the dilemmas outlined here.  I cannot support, however, a bill like the proposed Senate version of the Partial Birth Abortion Ban that reaffirms Roe v. Wade.

2003 Ron Paul 32:13
For the pro-life cause to truly succeed without undermining the very freedoms that protect life, it must return to principle and uphold our Founder’s vision of federalism as an essential component of the American system.   Undermining federalism ultimately can only undermine the very mechanism that protects the right to life.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 33

Let’s Keep All Representatives Elected

2003 Ron Paul 33:1
Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, the privately funded and privately constituted “Continuity of Government Commission” has recently proposed that, for the first time in our nation’s history, we should allow the appointment of members of the U.S. House of Representatives. Not only does this proposal fail to comport with the intention of the founders of this nation, but even worse, it advocates a solution that has been repeatedly rejected by this body.

2003 Ron Paul 33:2
The report of this so-called “Commission” makes clear that while the Senate has, from time to time, voted to pass constitutional amendments allowing for the appointment of House members, this body has always jealously guarded its status as “the people’s House” by failing to pass such amendments. A brief history review may be in order at this point. First, our Nation has been under attack from foreign powers in the past, such as in its nascent years when the British were constantly “coming” In our own century, we faced an attack on Pearl Harbor as well as the very real threat of nuclear annihilation. Now, because we have learned that our Capitol was a potential target in a terror plot, there is an outcry from some corners regarding our vulnerability. Our government leaders are no more vulnerable today to mass extinction than they were 20 years ago. Our top-flight military makes us, in many ways, less vulnerable to attack and the assassination of our leaders than we were 200 years ago.

2003 Ron Paul 33:3
Even if we were to sustain such a devastating attack, the nightmare scenario painted in the first report of the “commission” is not only far-fetched, but also admits of a plethora of potential solutions already existent in our current constitutional structure. Though the report endeavors to cast doubt on the legitimacy of those structures, it is unsuccessful. Moreover, what could be more offensive to our republican form of government and of more questionable legitimacy, than to have a slew of un-elected “representatives” outvote elected people on the floor of our U.S. House?

2003 Ron Paul 33:4
Let’s face it: we can scare people and doom-say anytime we wish, but it would only be in the case of a near-complete annihilation that our government would fail to function. In such an instance there is no “system” that will preserve our government. On the other hand, if we surrender the right to elect people to the U.S. House of Representatives under any circumstances, we will be on a slippery slope away from the few remaining vestiges and most precious principles of the government left to us by our founders.

2003 Ron Paul 33:5
In the event that this “proposal” gets more serious and is given long-term attention, I will place in the record more detailed statements defending the notion of an all-elected House of Representatives, and explaining the fallacies and illogic found in this report. For now Mr. Speaker, I simply wish to go on record as among those who would fight to the last to preserve the principle of a House of Representatives consisting entirely of members elected by the people.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 34


June 25, 2003
Does Tony Blair Deserve a Congressional Medal?

2003 Ron Paul 34:1
Mr. Speaker, I rise in strong opposition to this legislation for a number of reasons. First, forcing the American people to pay tens of thousands of dollars to give a gold medal to a foreign leader is immoral and unconstitutional. I will continue in my uncompromising opposition to appropriations not authorized within the enumerated powers of the Constitution- a Constitution that each member of Congress swore to uphold.

2003 Ron Paul 34:2
Second, though these gold medals are an unconstitutional appropriation of American tax dollars, at least in the past we have awarded them to great humanitarians and leaders like Mother Theresa, President Reagan, Pope John Paul II, and others. These medals generally have been proposed to recognize a life of service and leadership, and not for political reasons - as evidenced by the overwhelming bi-partisan support for awarding President Reagan, a Republican, a gold medal. These awards normally go to deserving individuals, which is why I have many times offered to contribute $100 of my own money, to be matched by other members, to finance these medals.

2003 Ron Paul 34:3
I sense that this current proposal is different, however. No one is claiming that British Prime Minister Tony Blair has given a lifetime of humanitarian service like Mother Theresa, or demonstrated the historical leadership of a Ronald Reagan. No one suggests the British Prime Minister, leading the avowedly socialist Labour Party, has embraced American values such as freedom and limited government, as Margaret Thatcher attempted before him. No, Tony Blair is being given this medal for one reason: he provided political support when international allies were sought for America’s attack on Iraq. Does this overtly political justification not cheapen both the medal itself and the achievements of those who have been awarded it previously?

2003 Ron Paul 34:4
I find it particularly unfortunate that the Republican-controlled Congress would nominate Tony Blair to receive this award. His political party is socialist: Britain under Blair has a system of socialized medicine and government intervention in all aspects of the commercial and personal lives of its citizens. Socialism is an enemy of freedom and liberty - as the 20 th century taught us so well. It is the philosophical basis for a century of mass-murder and impoverishment.

2003 Ron Paul 34:5
In May, a British television poll found that Prime Minister Blair is the most unpopular man in Great Britain. A brief look at his rule leaves little question why this is so. He has eroded Britain’s constitutional base- recently abolishing the ancient position of Lord Chancellor without any debate. He has overseen a huge expansion of government, with the creation of costly “assemblies” in Wales and Scotland. He also has overseen changes in Britain’s voting system that many believe open the door to widespread voting fraud. In short, he is no Margaret Thatcher and certainly no Winston Churchill. Yet today Congress is voting to give him its highest honor.

2003 Ron Paul 34:6
Mr. Speaker, it is very easy to be generous with other people’s money. I believe the politicization of this medal, as we are seeing here today, really makes my own point on such matters: Congress should never spend tax money for appropriations not authorized within the enumerated powers of the Constitution. When it does so, it charts a dangerous course away from the rule of law and away from liberty. I urge a “No” vote on this unfortunate bill.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 35

June 30, 2003 HON. RON PAUL OF TEXAS

The “Continuity of Government” Proposal – A Dangerous and Unnecessary Threat to Representative Rule

2003 Ron Paul 35:1
The COGC Proposal The “Continuity of Government Commission” (COGC), spearheaded by the Brookings Institution and the American Enterprise Institute, recently issued proposals for the operation of Congress following a catastrophic terrorist attack.  Specifically, COGC advocates a constitutional amendment calling for the appointment of individuals to the House of Representatives to fill the seats of dead or incapacitated members, a first in American history.  An examination of the proposal reveals that it is both unnecessary and dangerous.

2003 Ron Paul 35:2
Note that COGC is “self-commissioned,” its members being neither elected nor appointed by any government body.   The biographies of the commissioners demonstrate that COGC is made up mostly of professional lobbyists. Of course COGC is well-intentioned, but the nation should know exactly who is trying to substitute their wisdom for that of James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and other framers of the Constitution.  I think most Americans would prefer that proposals to amend the Constitution come from elected lawmakers or grassroots efforts, not from think tanks and lobbyists.

2003 Ron Paul 35:3
One reading the COGC proposal cannot help but sense the familiar Washington conceit at work, a conceit that sees America as totally dependent on the workings of Capitol Hill.  It is simply unthinkable to many in Washington that the American people might survive a period in which Congress did not pass any new laws.   But the truth is that the federal state is not America.   The American people have always been remarkably resilient in the face of emergencies, and individual states are far more equipped to deal with emergencies and fill congressional vacancies than COGC imagines.

2003 Ron Paul 35:4
COGC is Unnecessary
Every generation seems to labor under the delusion that it lives in the most dangerous and turbulent time in human history.   COGC certainly proves this point.  Its proposal provides doomsday scenarios designed to make us believe that the threat of modern terrorism poses a much greater risk to our government institutions than ever existed in the past.  Yet is Congress really more vulnerable than it was at the height of the Cold War, when a single Soviet missile could have destroyed Washington? Surely Congress faced greater danger in 1814, when the British army actually invaded Washington, routed the city, and burned down the White House!  Somehow the republic survived those much more perilous times without a constitutional amendment calling for the emergency appointment of Representatives.

2003 Ron Paul 35:5
The scenarios offered by the commission, while theoretically possible, are highly unlikely to disable Congress.   Remember, a majority of members assemble together in one place only rarely; even during votes most members are not on the floor together at the same time   Inauguration ceremonies and State of the Union addresses often bring together a majority of members in the same place, but simple precautions could be taken to keep a sufficient number away from such events.  Even a direct terrorist attack on the Pentagon failed to disrupt the operation of the Department of Defense.  The COGC proposal exaggerates the likelihood that a terrorist strike on Washington would incapacitate the House of Representatives, and exaggeration is a bad reason to amend the Constitution. 

2003 Ron Paul 35:6
Existing Constitutional Provisions are Adequate It is important to understand that the Constitution already provides the framework for Congress to function after a catastrophic event. Article I section 2 grants the governors of the various states authority to hold special elections to fill vacancies in the House of Representatives.   Article I section 4 gives Congress the authority to designate the time, manner, and place of such special elections if states should fail to act expeditiously following a national emergency.  As Hamilton explains in Federalist 59, the “time, place, and manner” clause was specifically designed to address the kind of extraordinary circumstances imagined by COGC.  Hamilton characterized authority over federal elections as shared between the states and Congress, with neither being able to control the process entirely.   

2003 Ron Paul 35:7
COGC posits that states could not hold special elections quickly enough after a terrorist act to guarantee the functioning of Congress.  But even COGC reports that the average length of House vacancies, following the death of a member until the swearing in of a successor after a special election, is only 126 days.  Certainly this period could be shortened given the urgency created by a terrorist attack.  We should not amend the Constitution simply to avoid having a reduced congressional body for a month or two.

2003 Ron Paul 35:8
In fact, Congress often goes months without passing significant legislation, and takes long breaks in August and December.   If anything, legislation passed in the aftermath of a terrorist event is likely to be based on emotion, not reason.  The terrible Patriot Act, passed only one month after September 11 th by a credulous Congress, is evidence of this.

2003 Ron Paul 35:9
Also, advances in technology can be used to reduce the risk of a disruption in congressional continuity following an emergency.   Members already carry Blackberry devices to maintain communications even if cut off from their offices. Similar technology can be used to allow remote electronic voting by members.  Congress should focus on contingency plans that utilize technology, not a constitutional amendment.

2003 Ron Paul 35:10
States have a wide variety of electronic and telephonic technology at their disposal to speed up the process of special elections.  Consider that popular television shows hold votes that poll millions of Americans in a single night!  Yet COGC ignores alternatives to standard voting and incorrectly assumes that states will be in disarray and unable to hold elections for months.

2003 Ron Paul 35:11
COGC is Dangerous because the House Must Be Elected

2003 Ron Paul 35:12
At its heart, the COGC proposal is fundamentally at odds with the right of the people always to elect their members of the House of Representatives.  The House must be elected.  Even “temporary” appointees would be unacceptable, because the laws passed would be permanent.

2003 Ron Paul 35:13
The problems with appointment of “representatives” are obvious.  COGC calls for a general constitutional amendment that gives Congress wide power to make rules for filling vacancies “in the event that a substantial number of members are killed or incapacitated.”  Such an amendment would be unavoidably vague, open to broad interpretation and abuse.  In defining terms like “vacancy,” “substantial,” and “incapacitated,” Congress or the courts would be setting a dangerous precedent for a more elastic constitutional framework.  Members of Congress simply cannot appoint their colleagues; the conflict of interest is glaring. 

2003 Ron Paul 35:14
Alternate proposals allowing state governors to appoint representatives from a list of successors nominated by members are no better.  The House of Representatives represents the people, not the states.  Single states often exhibit wide variations in political makeup even among voters of the same party.  Appointment by governors, even though the successors represent the dead member’s party choice, could change the ideological composition of Congress contrary to the will of the people.  Furthermore, voters choose an individual candidate, not a panel.  They should not be required to consider the qualifications of a candidate’s potential successors.

2003 Ron Paul 35:15
COGC focuses on government legitimacy, arguing that a House of Representatives with only a handful of surviving members would not be seen as legitimate by the public.  In fact the opposite is true: appointed “representatives” will never be seen as legitimate and in fact would not be legitimate.  Without exception, every member of the House of Representatives has been elected by voters in the member’s district.   Madison states in Federalist 52 that “The definition of the right of suffrage is very justly regarded as a fundamental article of republican government.”  The very legitimacy of the House of Representatives is based on its constitutional status as the most directly accountable federal body.

2003 Ron Paul 35:16
The House passes numerous laws, often by voice vote, with very few members present.  The legitimacy of those laws is not called into question.  Even a House made up of only five elected members would have more legitimacy, as the living continuation of the only elected entity in government, than a House composed of five surviving members and 430 appointees.  Furthermore, even a decimated House membership would have to pass legislation with the concurrence of the Senate, which could be restored to full strength immediately by state governors.

2003 Ron Paul 35:17
Consider a scenario COGC forgot to mention. Imagine a terrorist strike kills a majority of members of the House of Representatives.  200 members survive, and 235 are appointed by state governors on a “temporary basis.”  This new body considers a bill that drastically increases taxes to pay for emergency measures, while suspending civil liberties and imposing martial law.   The bill passes, with 195 elected members opposed and all 235 appointed members in favor.  Only 5 elected members support the measure.  Would the electorate consider this legislation legitimate?  Hardly.  Yet this is the type of outcome we must expect under the COGC proposal.

2003 Ron Paul 35:18

2003 Ron Paul 35:19
To quote Professor Charles Rice, a distinguished Professor Emeritus at Notre Dame Law School: “When it is not necessary to amend the Constitution, it is necessary not to amend the Constitution.”   We must not allow the understandable fears and passions engendered by the events of September 11 th to compel a rushed and grievous injury to our system of government.  The Constitution is our best ally in times of relative crisis; it is precisely during such times we should hold to it most dearly.  Rather than amending the Constitution, Congress should be meeting to discuss how to preserve our existing institutions- including an elected House- in the event of a terrorist attack.  The Constitution already provides us with the framework, while technology gives states the ability organize elections quickly.  The COGC proposal not only makes a mountain out of a molehill, but also acutely threatens the delicate balance of federal power established in the Constitution.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 36


July 10, 2003
Neo – CONNED !

2003 Ron Paul 36:1
The modern-day limited-government movement has been co-opted.  The conservatives have failed in their effort to shrink the size of government. There has not been, nor will there soon be, a conservative revolution in Washington. Party control of the federal government has changed, but the inexorable growth in the size and scope of government has continued unabated. The liberal arguments for limited government in personal affairs and foreign military adventurism were never seriously considered as part of this revolution.

2003 Ron Paul 36:2
Since the change of the political party in charge has not made a difference, who’s really in charge? If the particular party in power makes little difference, whose policy is it that permits expanded government programs, increased spending, huge deficits, nation building and the pervasive invasion of our privacy, with fewer Fourth Amendment protections than ever before?

2003 Ron Paul 36:3
Someone is responsible, and it’s important that those of us who love liberty, and resent big-brother government, identify the philosophic supporters who have the most to say about the direction our country is going. If they’re wrong—and I believe they are—we need to show it, alert the American people, and offer a more positive approach to government.  However, this depends on whether the American people desire to live in a free society and reject the dangerous notion that we need a strong central government to take care of us from the cradle to the grave. Do the American people really believe it’s the government’s responsibility to make us morally better and economically equal? Do we have a responsibility to police the world, while imposing our vision of good government on everyone else in the world with some form of utopian nation building? If not, and the contemporary enemies of liberty are exposed and rejected, then it behooves us to present an alternative philosophy that is morally superior and economically sound and provides a guide to world affairs to enhance peace and commerce.

2003 Ron Paul 36:4
One thing is certain: conservatives who worked and voted for less government in the Reagan years and welcomed the takeover of the U.S. Congress and the presidency in the 1990s and early 2000s were deceived. Soon they will realize that the goal of limited government has been dashed and that their views no longer matter.

2003 Ron Paul 36:5
The so-called conservative revolution of the past two decades has given us massive growth in government size, spending and regulations. Deficits are exploding and the national debt is now rising at greater than a half-trillion dollars per year. Taxes do not go down—even if we vote to lower them. They can’t, as long as spending is increased, since all spending must be paid for one way or another. Both Presidents Reagan and the elder George Bush raised taxes directly. With this administration, so far, direct taxes have been reduced—and they certainly should have been—but it means little if spending increases and deficits rise.

2003 Ron Paul 36:6
When taxes are not raised to accommodate higher spending, the bills must be paid by either borrowing or “printing” new money. This is one reason why we conveniently have a generous Federal Reserve chairman who is willing to accommodate the Congress. With borrowing and inflating, the “tax” is delayed and distributed in a way that makes it difficult for those paying the tax to identify it. Like future generations and those on fixed incomes who suffer from rising prices, and those who lose jobs they certainly feel the consequences of economic dislocation that this process causes. Government spending is always a “tax” burden on the American people and is never equally or fairly distributed. The poor and low-middle income workers always suffer the most from the deceitful tax of inflation and borrowing.

2003 Ron Paul 36:7
Many present-day conservatives, who generally argue for less government and supported the Reagan/Gingrich/Bush takeover of the federal government, are now justifiably disillusioned. Although not a monolithic group, they wanted to shrink the size of government.

2003 Ron Paul 36:8
Early in our history, the advocates of limited, constitutional government recognized two important principles: the rule of law was crucial, and a constitutional government must derive “just powers from the consent of the governed.” It was understood that an explicit transfer of power to government could only occur with power rightfully and naturally endowed to each individual as a God-given right. Therefore, the powers that could be transferred would be limited to the purpose of protecting liberty. Unfortunately, in the last 100 years, the defense of liberty has been fragmented and shared by various groups, with some protecting civil liberties, others economic freedom, and a small diverse group arguing for a foreign policy of nonintervention.

2003 Ron Paul 36:9
The philosophy of freedom has had a tough go of it, and it was hoped that the renewed interest in limited government of the past two decades would revive an interest in reconstituting the freedom philosophy into something more consistent. Those who worked for the goal of limited government power believed the rhetoric of politicians who promised smaller government. Sometimes it was just plain sloppy thinking on their part, but at other times, they fell victim to a deliberate distortion of a concise limited-government philosophy by politicians who misled many into believing that we would see a rollback on government intrusiveness.

2003 Ron Paul 36:10
Yes, there was always a remnant who longed for truly limited government and maintained a belief in the rule of law, combined with a deep conviction that free people and a government bound by a Constitution were the most advantageous form of government. They recognized it as the only practical way for prosperity to be spread to the maximum number of people while promoting peace and security.

2003 Ron Paul 36:11
That remnant—imperfect as it may have been—was heard from in the elections of 1980 and 1994 and then achieved major victories in 2000 and 2002 when professed limited-government proponents took over the White House, the Senate and the House. However, the true believers in limited government are now shunned and laughed at. At the very least, they are ignored—except when they are used by the new leaders of the right, the new conservatives now in charge of the U.S. government.

2003 Ron Paul 36:12
The remnant’s instincts were correct, and the politicians placated them with talk of free markets, limited government, and a humble, non-nation-building foreign policy. However, little concern for civil liberties was expressed in this recent quest for less government. Yet, for an ultimate victory of achieving freedom, this must change. Interest in personal privacy and choices has generally remained outside the concern of many conservatives—especially with the great harm done by their support of the drug war. Even though some confusion has emerged over our foreign policy since the breakdown of the Soviet empire, it’s been a net benefit in getting some conservatives back on track with a less militaristic, interventionist foreign policy. Unfortunately, after 9-ll, the cause of liberty suffered a setback. As a result, millions of Americans voted for the less-than-perfect conservative revolution because they believed in the promises of the politicians.

2003 Ron Paul 36:13
Now there’s mounting evidence to indicate exactly what happened to the revolution. Government is bigger than ever, and future commitments are overwhelming. Millions will soon become disenchanted with the new status quo delivered to the American people by the advocates of limited government and will find it to be just more of the old status quo. Victories for limited government have turned out to be hollow indeed.

2003 Ron Paul 36:14
Since the national debt is increasing at a rate greater than a half-trillion dollars per year, the debt limit was recently increased by an astounding $984 billion dollars. Total U.S. government obligations are $43 trillion, while the total net worth of U.S. households is about $40.6 trillion. The country is broke, but no one in Washington seems to notice or care. The philosophic and political commitment for both guns and butter—and especially the expanding American empire—must be challenged. This is crucial for our survival.

2003 Ron Paul 36:15
In spite of the floundering economy, Congress and the Administration continue to take on new commitments in foreign aid, education, farming, medicine, multiple efforts at nation building, and preemptive wars around the world. Already we’re entrenched in Iraq and Afghanistan, with plans to soon add new trophies to our conquest. War talk abounds as to when Syria, Iran and North Korea will be attacked.

2003 Ron Paul 36:16
How did all this transpire? Why did the government do it? Why haven’t the people objected? How long will it go on before something is done? Does anyone care?

2003 Ron Paul 36:17
Will the euphoria of grand military victories—against non-enemies—ever be mellowed? Someday, we as a legislative body must face the reality of the dire situation in which we have allowed ourselves to become enmeshed. Hopefully, it will be soon!

2003 Ron Paul 36:18
We got here because ideas do have consequences. Bad ideas have bad consequences, and even the best of intentions have unintended consequences. We need to know exactly what the philosophic ideas were that drove us to this point; then, hopefully, reject them and decide on another set of intellectual parameters.

2003 Ron Paul 36:19
There is abundant evidence exposing those who drive our foreign policy justifying preemptive war. Those who scheme are proud of the achievements in usurping control over foreign policy. These are the neoconservatives of recent fame. Granted, they are talented and achieved a political victory that all policymakers must admire. But can freedom and the republic survive this takeover? That question should concern us.

2003 Ron Paul 36:20
Neoconservatives are obviously in positions of influence and are well-placed throughout our government and the media. An apathetic Congress put up little resistance and abdicated its responsibilities over foreign affairs. The electorate was easily influenced to join in the patriotic fervor supporting the military adventurism advocated by the neoconservatives.

2003 Ron Paul 36:21
The numbers of those who still hope for truly limited government diminished and had their concerns ignored these past 22 months, during the aftermath of 9-11. Members of Congress were easily influenced to publicly support any domestic policy or foreign military adventure that was supposed to help reduce the threat of a terrorist attack. Believers in limited government were harder to find. Political money, as usual, played a role in pressing Congress into supporting almost any proposal suggested by the neocons. This process—where campaign dollars and lobbying efforts affect policy—is hardly the domain of any single political party, and unfortunately, is the way of life in Washington. 

2003 Ron Paul 36:22
There are many reasons why government continues to grow. It would be naïve for anyone to expect otherwise. Since 9-11, protection of privacy, whether medical, personal or financial, has vanished. Free speech and the Fourth Amendment have been under constant attack. Higher welfare expenditures are endorsed by the leadership of both parties. Policing the world and nation-building issues are popular campaign targets, yet they are now standard operating procedures. There’s no sign that these programs will be slowed or reversed until either we are stopped by force overseas (which won’t be soon) or we go broke and can no longer afford these grandiose plans for a world empire (which will probably come sooner than later.)

2003 Ron Paul 36:23
None of this happened by accident or coincidence. Precise philosophic ideas prompted certain individuals to gain influence to implement these plans. The neoconservatives—a name they gave themselves—diligently worked their way into positions of power and influence. They documented their goals, strategy and moral justification for all they hoped to accomplish. Above all else, they were not and are not conservatives dedicated to limited, constitutional government.

2003 Ron Paul 36:24
Neo-conservatism has been around for decades and, strangely, has connections to past generations as far back as Machiavelli. Modern-day neo-conservatism was introduced to us in the 1960s. It entails both a detailed strategy as well as a philosophy of government. The ideas of Teddy Roosevelt, and certainly Woodrow Wilson, were quite similar to many of the views of present-day neocons. Neocon spokesman Max Boot brags that what he advocates is “hard Wilsonianism.” In many ways, there’s nothing “neo” about their views, and certainly nothing conservative. Yet they have been able to co-opt the conservative movement by advertising themselves as a new or modern form of conservatism.

2003 Ron Paul 36:25
More recently, the modern-day neocons have come from the far left, a group historically identified as former Trotskyites. Liberal, Christopher Hitchens, has recently officially joined the neocons, and it has been reported that he has already been to the White House as an ad hoc consultant. Many neocons now in positions of influence in Washington can trace their status back to Professor Leo Strauss of the University of Chicago. One of Strauss’ books was Thoughts on Machiavelli . This book was not a condemnation of Machiavelli’s philosophy. Paul Wolfowitz actually got his PhD under Strauss. Others closely associated with these views are Richard Perle, Eliot Abrams, Robert Kagan, and William Kristol. All are key players in designing our new strategy of preemptive war. Others include: Michael Ledeen of the American Enterprise Institute; former CIA Director James Woolsey; Bill Bennett of Book of Virtues fame; Frank Gaffney; Dick Cheney; and Donald Rumsfeld. There are just too many to mention who are philosophically or politically connected to the neocon philosophy in some varying degree.

2003 Ron Paul 36:26
The godfather of modern-day neo-conservatism is considered to be Irving Kristol, father of Bill Kristol, who set the stage in 1983 with his publication Reflections of a Neoconservative. In this book, Kristol also defends the traditional liberal position on welfare.

2003 Ron Paul 36:27
More important than the names of people affiliated with neo-conservatism are the views they adhere to. Here is a brief summary of the general understanding of what neocons believe:

    2003 Ron Paul 36:28
  1. They agree with Trotsky on permanent revolution, violent as well as intellectual.

  2. 2003 Ron Paul 36:29
  3. They are for redrawing the map of the Middle East and are willing to use force to do so.

  4. 2003 Ron Paul 36:30
  5. They believe in preemptive war to achieve desired ends.

  6. 2003 Ron Paul 36:31
  7. They accept the notion that the ends justify the means—that hardball politics is a moral necessity.

  8. 2003 Ron Paul 36:32
  9. They express no opposition to the welfare state.

  10. 2003 Ron Paul 36:33
  11. They are not bashful about an American empire; instead they strongly endorse it.

  12. 2003 Ron Paul 36:34
  13. They believe lying is necessary for the state to survive.

  14. 2003 Ron Paul 36:35
  15. They believe a powerful federal government is a benefit.

  16. 2003 Ron Paul 36:36
  17. They believe pertinent facts about how a society should be run should be held by the elite and withheld from those who do not have the courage to deal with it.

  18. 2003 Ron Paul 36:37
  19.  They believe neutrality in foreign affairs is ill advised.

  20. 2003 Ron Paul 36:38
  21. They hold Leo Strauss in high esteem.

  22. 2003 Ron Paul 36:39
  23. They believe imperialism, if progressive in nature, is appropriate.

  24. 2003 Ron Paul 36:40
  25. Using American might to force American ideals on others is acceptable.  Force should not be limited to the defense of our country.

  26. 2003 Ron Paul 36:41
  27. 9-11 resulted from the lack of foreign entanglements, not from too many.

  28. 2003 Ron Paul 36:42
  29. They dislike and despise libertarians (therefore, the same applies to all strict constitutionalists.)

  30. 2003 Ron Paul 36:43
  31. They endorse attacks on civil liberties, such as those found in the Patriot Act, as being necessary.

  32. 2003 Ron Paul 36:44
  33. They unconditionally support Israel and have a close alliance with the Likud Party.

2003 Ron Paul 36:45
Various organizations and publications over the last 30 years have played a significant role in the rise to power of the neoconservatives. It took plenty of money and commitment to produce the intellectual arguments needed to convince the many participants in the movement of its respectability.

2003 Ron Paul 36:46
It is no secret—especially after the rash of research and articles written about the neocons since our invasion of Iraq—how they gained influence and what organizations were used to promote their cause. Although for decades, they agitated for their beliefs through publications like The National Review, The Weekly Standard, The Public Interest, The Wall Street Journal , Commentary , and the New York Post , their views only gained momentum in the 1990s following the first Persian Gulf War—which still has not ended even with removal of Saddam Hussein. They became convinced that a much more militant approach to resolving all the conflicts in the Middle East was an absolute necessity, and they were determined to implement that policy.

2003 Ron Paul 36:47
In addition to publications, multiple think tanks and projects were created to promote their agenda. A product of the Bradley Foundation, the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) led the neocon charge, but the real push for war came from the Project for a New American Century (PNAC) another organization helped by the Bradley Foundation. This occurred in 1998 and was chaired by Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol. They urged early on for war against Iraq, but were disappointed with the Clinton administration, which never followed through with its periodic bombings.  Obviously, these bombings were motivated more by Clinton’s personal and political problems than a belief in the neocon agenda.

2003 Ron Paul 36:48
The election of 2000 changed all that.  The Defense Policy Board, chaired by Richard Perle, played no small role in coordinating the various projects and think tanks, all determined to take us into war against Iraq. It wasn’t too long before the dream of empire was brought closer to reality by the election of 2000 with Paul Wolfowitz, Richard Cheney, and Donald Rumsfeld playing key roles in this accomplishment. The plan to promote an “American greatness” imperialistic foreign policy was now a distinct possibility. Iraq offered a great opportunity to prove their long-held theories. This opportunity was a consequence of the 9-11 disaster.

2003 Ron Paul 36:49
The money and views of Rupert Murdoch also played a key role in promoting the neocon views, as well as rallying support by the general population, through his News Corporation, which owns Fox News Network, the New York Post , and Weekly Standard. This powerful and influential media empire did more to galvanize public support for the Iraqi invasion than one might imagine. This facilitated the Rumsfeld/Cheney policy as their plans to attack Iraq came to fruition. It would have been difficult for the neocons to usurp foreign policy from the restraints of Colin Powell’s State Department without the successful agitation of the Rupert Murdoch empire. Max Boot was satisfied, as he explained: “Neoconservatives believe in using American might to promote American ideals abroad.” This attitude is a far cry from the advice of the Founders, who advocated no entangling alliances and neutrality as the proper goal of American foreign policy.

2003 Ron Paul 36:50
Let there be no doubt, those in the neocon camp had been anxious to go to war against Iraq for a decade. They justified the use of force to accomplish their goals, even if it required preemptive war. If anyone doubts this assertion, they need only to read of their strategy in “A Clean Break: a New Strategy for Securing the Realm.” Although they felt morally justified in changing the government in Iraq, they knew that public support was important, and justification had to be given to pursue the war. Of course, a threat to us had to exist before the people and the Congress would go along with war. The majority of Americans became convinced of this threat, which, in actuality, never really existed. Now we have the ongoing debate over the location of weapons of mass destruction. Where was the danger? Was all this killing and spending necessary? How long will this nation building and dying go on? When will we become more concerned about the needs of our own citizens than the problems we sought in Iraq and Afghanistan? Who knows where we’ll go next—Iran, Syria or North Korea?

2003 Ron Paul 36:51
At the end of the Cold War, the neoconservatives realized a rearrangement of the world was occurring and that our superior economic and military power offered them a perfect opportunity to control the process of remaking the Middle East.

2003 Ron Paul 36:52
It was recognized that a new era was upon us, and the neocons welcomed Frances Fukuyama’s “end of history” declaration. To them, the debate was over. The West won; the Soviets lost. Old-fashioned communism was dead. Long live the new era of neoconservatism. The struggle may not be over, but the West won the intellectual fight, they reasoned. The only problem is that the neocons decided to define the philosophy of the victors. They have been amazingly successful in their efforts to control the debate over what Western values are and by what methods they will be spread throughout the world.

2003 Ron Paul 36:53
Communism surely lost a lot with the breakup of the Soviet Empire, but this can hardly be declared a victory for American liberty, as the Founders understood it. Neoconservatism is not the philosophy of free markets and a wise foreign policy. Instead, it represents big-government welfare at home and a program of using our military might to spread their version of American values throughout the world. Since neoconservatives dominate the way the U.S. government now operates, it behooves us all to understand their beliefs and goals. The breakup of the Soviet system may well have been an epic event but to say that the views of the neocons are the unchallenged victors and that all we need do is wait for their implementation is a capitulation to controlling the forces of history that many Americans are not yet ready to concede. There is surely no need to do so.

2003 Ron Paul 36:54
There is now a recognized philosophic connection between modern-day neoconservatives and Irving Kristol, Leo Strauss, and Machiavelli. This is important in understanding that today’s policies and the subsequent problems will be with us for years to come if these policies are not reversed.

2003 Ron Paul 36:55
Not only did Leo Strauss write favorably of Machiavelli, Michael Ledeen, a current leader of the neoconservative movement, did the same in 1999 in his book with the title, Machiavelli on Modern Leadership, and subtitled: Why Machiavelli’s iron rules are as timely and important today as five centuries ago.   Ledeen is indeed an influential neocon theorist whose views get lots of attention today in Washington. His book on Machiavelli, interestingly enough, was passed out to Members of Congress attending a political strategy meeting shortly after its publication and at just about the time A Clean Break was issued.

2003 Ron Paul 36:56
In Ledeen’s most recent publication, The War Against the Terror Masters , he reiterates his beliefs outlined in this 1999 Machaivelli book. He specifically praises: “Creative destruction…both within our own society and abroad…(foreigners) seeing America undo traditional societies may fear us, for they do not wish to be undone.” Amazingly, Ledeen concludes: “They must attack us in order to survive, just as we must  destroy them to advance our historic mission.”

2003 Ron Paul 36:57
If those words don’t scare you, nothing will. If they are not a clear warning, I don’t know what could be. It sounds like both sides of each disagreement in the world will be following the principle of preemptive war. The world is certainly a less safe place for it.

2003 Ron Paul 36:58
In Machiavelli on Modern Leadership , Ledeen praises a business leader for correctly understanding Machiavelli: “There are no absolute solutions. It all depends. What is right and what is wrong depends on what needs to be done and how.” This is a clear endorsement of situational ethics and is not coming from the traditional left. It reminds me of: “It depends on what the definition of the word ‘is’ is.”

2003 Ron Paul 36:59
Ledeen quotes Machiavelli approvingly on what makes a great leader. “A prince must have no other objectives or other thoughts or take anything for his craft, except war.” To Ledeen, this meant: “…the virtue of the warrior are those of great leaders of any successful organization.” Yet it’s obvious that war is not coincidental to neocon philosophy, but an integral part. The intellectuals justify it, and the politicians carry it out. There’s a precise reason to argue for war over peace according to Ledeen, for “…peace increases our peril by making discipline less urgent, encouraging some of our worst instincts, in depriving us of some of our best leaders.” Peace, he claims, is a dream and not even a pleasant one, for it would cause indolence and would undermine the power of the state. Although I concede the history of the world is a history of frequent war, to capitulate and give up even striving for peace—believing peace is not a benefit to mankind—is a frightening thought that condemns the world to perpetual war and justifies it as a benefit and necessity. These are dangerous ideas, from which no good can come.

2003 Ron Paul 36:60
The conflict of the ages has been between the state and the individual: central power versus liberty. The more restrained the state and the more emphasis on individual liberty, the greater has been the advancement of civilization and general prosperity. Just as man’s condition was not locked in place by the times and wars of old and improved with liberty and free markets, there’s no reason to believe a new stage for man might not be achieved by believing and working for conditions of peace. The inevitability and so-called need for preemptive war should never be intellectually justified as being a benefit. Such an attitude guarantees the backsliding of civilization. Neocons, unfortunately, claim that war is in man’s nature and that we can’t do much about it, so let’s use it to our advantage by promoting our goodness around the world through force of arms. That view is anathema to the cause of liberty and the preservation of the Constitution. If it is not loudly refuted, our future will be dire indeed.

2003 Ron Paul 36:61
Ledeen believes man is basically evil and cannot be left to his own desires. Therefore, he must have proper and strong leadership, just as Machiavelli argued. Only then can man achieve good, as Ledeen explains: “In order to achieve the most noble accomplishments, the leader may have to ‘enter into evil.’ This is the chilling insight that has made Machiavelli so feared, admired and challenging…we are rotten,” argues Ledeen. “It’s true that we can achieve greatness if, and only if, we are properly led.” In other words, man is so depraved that individuals are incapable of moral, ethical and spiritual greatness, and achieving excellence and virtue can only come from a powerful authoritarian leader. What depraved ideas are these to now be influencing our leaders in Washington?  The question Ledeen doesn’t answer is:  “Why do the political leaders not suffer from the same shortcomings and where do they obtain their monopoly on wisdom?”

2003 Ron Paul 36:62
Once this trust is placed in the hands of a powerful leader, this neocon argues that certain tools are permissible to use. For instance: “Lying is central to the survival of nations and to the success of great enterprises, because if our enemies can count on the reliability of everything you say, your vulnerability is enormously increased.” What about the effects of lying on one’s own people? Who cares if a leader can fool the enemy? Does calling it “strategic deception” make lying morally justifiable? Ledeen and Machiavelli argue that it does, as long as the survivability of the state is at stake. Preserving the state is their goal, even if the personal liberty of all individuals has to be suspended or canceled.

2003 Ron Paul 36:63
Ledeen makes it clear that war is necessary to establish national boundaries—because that’s the way it’s always been done. Who needs progress of the human race! He explains:

2003 Ron Paul 36:64
“Look at the map of the world: national boundaries have not been drawn by peaceful men leading lives of spiritual contemplation. National boundaries have been established by war, and national character has been shaped by struggle, most often bloody struggle.”

2003 Ron Paul 36:65
Yes, but who is to lead the charge and decide which borders we are to fight for? What about borders 6,000 miles away unrelated to our own contiguous borders and our own national security? Stating a relative truism regarding the frequency of war throughout history should hardly be the moral justification for expanding the concept of war to settle man’s disputes. How can one call this progress?

2003 Ron Paul 36:66
Machiavelli, Ledeen and the neocons recognized a need to generate a religious zeal for promoting the state. This, he claims, is especially necessary when force is used to promote an agenda. It’s been true throughout history and remains true today, each side of major conflicts invokes God’s approval. Our side refers to a “crusade;” theirs to a “holy Jihad.” Too often wars boil down to their god against our God. It seems this principle is more a cynical effort to gain approval from the masses, especially those most likely to be killed for the sake of the war promoters on both sides who have power, prestige and wealth at stake.

2003 Ron Paul 36:67
Ledeen explains why God must always be on the side of advocates of war: “Without fear of God, no state can last long, for the dread of eternal damnation keeps men in line, causes them to honor their promises, and inspires them to risk their lives for the common good.” It seems dying for the common good has gained a higher moral status than eternal salvation of one’s soul. Ledeen adds:

2003 Ron Paul 36:68
“Without fear of punishment, men will not obey laws that force them to act contrary to their passions. Without fear of arms, the state cannot enforce the laws…to this end, Machiavelli wants leaders to make the state spectacular.”

2003 Ron Paul 36:69
It’s of interest to note that some large Christian denominations have joined the neoconservatives in promoting preemptive war, while completely ignoring the Christian doctrine of a Just War. The neocons sought and openly welcomed their support.

2003 Ron Paul 36:70
            I ’d like someone to glean anything from what the Founders said or placed in the Constitution that agrees with this now-professed doctrine of a “spectacular” state promoted by those who now have so much influence on our policies here at home and abroad. Ledeen argues that this religious element, this fear of God, is needed for discipline of those who may be hesitant to sacrifice their lives for the good of the “spectacular state.”

2003 Ron Paul 36:71
He explains in eerie terms: “Dying for one’s country doesn’t come naturally. Modern armies, raised from the populace, must be inspired, motivated, indoctrinated. Religion is central to the military enterprise, for men are more likely to risk their lives if they believe they will be rewarded forever after for serving their country.” This is an admonition that might just as well have been given by Osama bin Laden, in rallying his troops to sacrifice their lives to kill the invading infidels, as by our intellectuals at the AEI, who greatly influence our foreign policy.

2003 Ron Paul 36:72
Neocons—anxious for the U.S. to use force to realign the boundaries and change regimes in the Middle East—clearly understand the benefit of a galvanizing and emotional event to rally the people to their cause. Without a special event, they realized the difficulty in selling their policy of preemptive war where our own military personnel would be killed. Whether it was the Lusitania, Pearl Harbor, the Gulf of Tonkin, or the Maine, all served their purpose in promoting a war that was sought by our leaders.

2003 Ron Paul 36:73
Ledeen writes of a fortuitous event (1999):

2003 Ron Paul 36:74
…of course, we can always get lucky. Stunning events from outside can providentially awaken the enterprise from its growing torpor, and demonstrate the need for reversal, as the devastating Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941 so effectively aroused the U.S. from its soothing dreams of permanent neutrality.

2003 Ron Paul 36:75
Amazingly, Ledeen calls Pearl Harbor a “lucky” event.  The Project for a New American Century, as recently as September 2000, likewise, foresaw the need for “a Pearl Harbor event” that would galvanize the American people to support their ambitious plans to ensure political and economic domination of the world, while strangling any potential “rival.”

2003 Ron Paul 36:76
Recognizing a “need” for a Pearl Harbor event, and referring to Pearl Harbor as being “lucky” are not identical to support and knowledge of such an event, but this sympathy for a galvanizing event, as 9-11 turned out to be, was used to promote an agenda that strict constitutionalists and devotees of the Founders of this nation find appalling is indeed disturbing. After 9-11, Rumsfeld and others argued for an immediate attack on Iraq, even though it was not implicated in the attacks.

2003 Ron Paul 36:77
The fact that neo-conservatives ridicule those who firmly believe that U.S. interests and world peace would best be served by a policy of neutrality and avoiding foreign entanglements should not go unchallenged. Not to do so is to condone their grandiose plans for American world hegemony.

2003 Ron Paul 36:78
The current attention given neocons is usually done in the context of foreign policy. But there’s more to what’s going on today than just the tremendous influence the neocons have on our new policy of preemptive war with a goal of empire. Our government is now being moved by several ideas that come together in what I call “neoconism.” The foreign policy is being openly debated, even if its implications are not fully understood by many who support it. Washington is now driven by old views brought together in a new package.

2003 Ron Paul 36:79
We know those who lead us—both in the administration and in Congress—show no appetite to challenge the tax or monetary systems that do so much damage to our economy. The IRS and the Federal Reserve are off limits for criticism or reform. There’s no resistance to spending, either domestic or foreign. Debt is not seen as a problem. The supply-siders won on this issue, and now many conservatives readily endorse deficit spending.

2003 Ron Paul 36:80
There’s no serious opposition to the expanding welfare state, with rapid growth of the education, agriculture and medical-care bureaucracy. Support for labor unions and protectionism are not uncommon. Civil liberties are easily sacrificed in the post 9-11 atmosphere prevailing in Washington. Privacy issues are of little concern, except for a few members of Congress. Foreign aid and internationalism—in spite of some healthy criticism of the UN and growing concerns for our national sovereignty—are  championed on both sides of the aisle. Lip service is given to the free market and free trade, yet the entire economy is run by special-interest legislation favoring big business, big labor and, especially, big money.

2003 Ron Paul 36:81
Instead of the “end of history,” we are now experiencing the end of a vocal limited-government movement in our nation’s capital. While most conservatives no longer defend balanced budgets and reduced spending, most liberals have grown lazy in defending civil liberties and now are approving wars that we initiate. The so-called “third way” has arrived and, sadly, it has taken the worst of what the conservatives and liberals have to offer. The people are less well off for it, while liberty languishes as a result.

2003 Ron Paul 36:82
Neocons enthusiastically embrace the Department of Education and national testing. Both parties overwhelmingly support the huge commitment to a new prescription drug program. Their devotion to the new approach called “compassionate conservatism” has lured many conservatives into supporting programs for expanding the federal role in welfare and in church charities. The faith-based initiative is a neocon project, yet it only repackages and expands the liberal notion of welfare. The intellectuals who promoted these initiatives were neocons, but there’s nothing conservative about expanding the federal government’s role in welfare.

2003 Ron Paul 36:83
The supply-siders’ policy of low-marginal tax rates has been incorporated into neoconism, as well as their support for easy money and generous monetary inflation. Neoconservatives are disinterested in the gold standard and even ignore the supply-siders’ argument for a phony gold standard.

2003 Ron Paul 36:84
Is it any wonder that federal government spending is growing at a rate faster than in any time in the past 35 years?

2003 Ron Paul 36:85
Power, politics and privilege prevail over the rule of law, liberty, justice and peace. But it does not need to be that way. Neoconism has brought together many old ideas about how government should rule the people. It may have modernized its appeal and packaging, but authoritarian rule is authoritarian rule, regardless of the humanitarian overtones. A solution can only come after the current ideology driving our government policies is replaced with a more positive one. In a historical context, liberty is a modern idea and must once again regain the high moral ground for civilization to advance. Restating the old justifications for war, people control and a benevolent state will not suffice. It cannot eliminate the shortcomings that always occur when the state assumes authority over others and when the will of one nation is forced on another—whether or not it is done with good intentions.

2003 Ron Paul 36:86
I realize that all conservatives are not neoconservatives, and all neocons don’t necessarily agree on all points—which means that in spite of their tremendous influence, most Members of Congress and those in the administration do not necessarily take their marching orders from the AEI or Richard Perle. But to use this as a reason to ignore what neoconservative leaders believe, write about it and agitate for—with amazing success I might point out—would be at our own peril. This country still allows open discourse—though less everyday—and we who disagree should push the discussion and expose those who drive our policies. It is getting more difficult to get  fair and balanced discussion on the issues, because it has become routine for the hegemons to label those who object to preemptive war and domestic surveillance as traitors, unpatriotic and un-American. The uniformity of support for our current foreign policy by major and cable-news networks should concern every American. We should all be thankful for CSPAN and the internet.

2003 Ron Paul 36:87
Michael Ledeen and other neoconservatives are already lobbying for war against Iran. Ledeen is pretty nasty to those who call for a calmer, reasoned approach by calling those who are not ready for war “cowards and appeasers of tyrants.” Because some urge a less militaristic approach to dealing with Iran, he claims they are betraying America’s best “traditions.” I wonder where he learned early American history! It’s obvious that Ledeen doesn’t consider the Founders and the Constitution part of our best traditions. We were hardly encouraged by the American revolutionaries to pursue an American empire. We were, however, urged to keep the Republic they so painstakingly designed.

2003 Ron Paul 36:88
If the neoconservatives retain control of the conservative, limited-government movement in Washington, the ideas, once championed by conservatives, of limiting the size and scope of government will be a long-forgotten dream.

2003 Ron Paul 36:89
  The believers in liberty ought not deceive themselves. Who should be satisfied? Certainly not conservatives, for there is no conservative movement left. How could liberals be satisfied? They are pleased with the centralization of education and medical programs in Washington and support many of the administration’s proposals. But none should be pleased with the steady attack on the civil liberties of all American citizens and the now-accepted consensus that preemptive war—for almost any reason—is an acceptable policy for dealing with all the conflicts and problems of the world.

2003 Ron Paul 36:90
In spite of the deteriorating conditions in Washington—with loss of personal liberty, a weak economy, exploding deficits, and perpetual war, followed by nation building—there are still quite a number of us who would relish the opportunity to improve things, in one way or another. Certainly, a growing number of frustrated Americans, from both the right and the left, are getting anxious to see this Congress do a better job. But first, Congress must stop doing a bad job.

2003 Ron Paul 36:91
We’re at the point where we need a call to arms, both here in Washington and across the country. I’m not talking about firearms. Those of us who care need to raise both arms and face our palms out and begin waving and shouting: Stop! Enough is enough! It should include liberals, conservatives and independents. We’re all getting a bum rap from politicians who are pushed by polls and controlled by special-interest money.

2003 Ron Paul 36:92
One thing is certain, no matter how morally justified the programs and policies seem, the ability to finance all the guns and butter being promised is limited, and those limits are becoming more apparent every day.

2003 Ron Paul 36:93
Spending, borrowing and printing money cannot be the road to prosperity. It hasn’t worked in Japan, and it isn’t working here either. As a matter of fact, it’s never worked anytime throughout history. A point is always reached where government planning, spending and inflation run out of steam. Instead of these old tools reviving an economy, as they do in the early stages of economic interventionism, they eventually become the problem. Both sides of the political spectrum must one day realize that limitless government intrusion in the economy, in our personal lives and in the affairs of other nations cannot serve the best interests of America. This is not a conservative problem, nor is it a liberal problem—it’s a government intrusion problem that comes from both groups, albeit for different reasons. The problems emanate from both camps that champion different programs for different reasons. The solution will come when both groups realize that it’s not merely a single-party problem, or just a liberal or just a conservative problem.

2003 Ron Paul 36:94
Once enough of us decide we’ve had enough of all these so-called good things that the government is always promising—or more likely, when the country is broke and the government is unable to fulfill its promises to the people—we can start a serious discussion on the proper role for government in a free society. Unfortunately, it will be some time before Congress gets the message that the people are demanding true reform. This requires that those responsible for today’s problems are exposed and their philosophy of pervasive government intrusion is rejected.

2003 Ron Paul 36:95
Let it not be said that no one cared, that no one objected once it’s realized that our liberties and wealth are in jeopardy. A few have, and others will continue to do so, but too many—both in and out of government—close their eyes to the issue of personal liberty and ignore the fact that endless borrowing to finance endless demands cannot be sustained. True prosperity can only come from a healthy economy and sound money. That can only be achieved in a free society.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 37


July 21, 2003    
The Justifications for War

2003 Ron Paul 37:1
Madam Speaker, the truth about whether or not Saddam Hussein sought to buy uranium from Niger has dominated the news for the past several weeks. Many of those challenging the administration on this issue are motivated more by politics than by policy. Some of today’s critics were strongly in favor of going to war against Iraq when doing so appeared politically popular, but now are chagrined that the war is not going as smoothly as was hoped.

2003 Ron Paul 37:2
I am sure once the alleged attempt to buy uranium is thoroughly debunked, the other excuses for going to war will be examined with a great deal of scrutiny as well. It is obvious that the evidence used to justify going to war is now less than convincing.

2003 Ron Paul 37:3
The charge that Saddam Hussein had aluminum tubes used in manufacturing nuclear weapons was in error.

2003 Ron Paul 37:4
A fleet of unmanned aerial vehicles capable of dispensing chemical and biological weapons did not exist.

2003 Ron Paul 37:5
The 63,000 liters of anthrax and botulism have not been found, nor have any of the mobile germ labs. There are no signs of the one million pounds of sarin, mustard, and VX gasses alleged to exist.

2003 Ron Paul 37:6
No evidence has been revealed to indicate Iraq was a threat to the security of any nation, let alone America.  

2003 Ron Paul 37:7
The charge that Saddam Hussein was connected to the al Qaeda was wrong. Saddam Hussein’s violations the UN resolutions regarding weapons of mass destruction remain unproven.

2003 Ron Paul 37:8
How could so many errors have occurred? Some say it was incompetence, while others claim outright deception and lies. Some say it was selective use of intelligence to promote a particular policy already decided upon. This debate, I am sure, will rage on for a long time, and since motivations are subjective and hard to prove, resolving the controversy will be difficult. However, this should not diminish the importance of sorting out truth from fiction, errors from malice.

2003 Ron Paul 37:9
One question, though, I hope gets asked: Why should we use intelligence cited by a foreign government as justification for going to war? One would think the billions we spend would produce reliable intelligence-gathering agencies.

2003 Ron Paul 37:10
Since we lack a coherent foreign policy, we see support for war from different groups depending on circumstances unrelated to national defense. For instance, those who strenuously objected to Kosovo promoted war in Iraq. And those who objected to Iraq are now anxious to send troops to Liberia. For some, U.N. permission is important and necessary. For others, the U.N. is helpful provided it endorses the war they want.

2003 Ron Paul 37:11
Only a few correctly look to the Constitution and to Congress to sort out the pros and cons of each conflict, and decide whether or not a declaration of war is warranted.

2003 Ron Paul 37:12
The sad fact is that we have lost our way. A legitimate threat to national security is no longer a litmus test for sending troops hither and yon, and the American people no longer require Congress to declare the wars we fight. Hopefully, some day this will change.

2003 Ron Paul 37:13
The raging debate over whether or not Saddam Hussein tried to buy uranium, as important as it is, distracts from the much more important strategic issue of the proper foreign policy in a republic.

2003 Ron Paul 37:14
Hopefully, we will soon seriously consider the foreign policy approach advocated by our Founding Fathers, a policy of nonintervention in the affairs of other nations. Avoiding entangling alliances and staying out of the internal affairs of other nations is the policy most conducive to peace and prosperity.  Policing the world and nation building are not proper for our constitutional republic.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 38


July 23, 2003  
Stay out of Liberia!

2003 Ron Paul 38:1
Mr. Speaker, I rise to introduce a resolution expressing the sense of the Congress that while we encourage a regional West African effort to resolve the Liberia crisis, the United States military has no role - either alone or as part of a multinational force - in that country.

2003 Ron Paul 38:2
We all recognize the tragedy in Liberia. A civil war has raged there for the past 14 years, leaving thousands dead and a million without homes. Horrific stories of atrocities abound. We wish for peace and a resolution to the conflict. But we must recognize that this resolution should come through regional West African efforts. These are the countries involved and affected; these are the countries with the most incentive to resolve the problem. Simply stated, there is no US national security interest at stake in the conflict - no matter how widely “national interest” is defined.

2003 Ron Paul 38:3
But the administration is currently pondering repeated calls by some in the US and especially the United Nations to commit thousands of troops to a full-fledged American operation in Liberia. According to press reports, the Pentagon has just ordered about 4,500 sailors and marines from the Horn of Africa into the Mediterranean Sea, so as to be closer to Liberia just in case.

2003 Ron Paul 38:4
Before we commit our troops to yet another foreign intervention, Congress must at the very least consider the implications of further committing our already seriously overextended military. According to recent press reporting, of the 33 brigades that make up the entirety of the US Army’s active duty combat forces, all but just three brigades are either currently engaged in Iraq, Afghanistan, South Korea; are committed to other missions; or are reconstituting. This suggests that the US military is in serious danger of becoming over-extended.

2003 Ron Paul 38:5
Mr. Speaker, there is no US interest in the conflict and US military involvement could well lead to resentment and more violence against US troops, as we saw in Somalia. We must ponder this possibility before yet again putting our men and women in uniform in harm’s way.

2003 Ron Paul 38:6
I hope very much that my colleagues will join me in this effort and that we may see a quick Floor vote on this very important measure.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 39


July 24, 2003
Reimportation of Prescription Drugs

2003 Ron Paul 39:1
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to be an original cosponsor of HR 2427, the Pharmaceutical Market Access Act, because I believe it is an important bill that will benefit all Americans. As my colleagues are aware, many Americans are concerned about the high cost of prescription drugs. These high prices particularly affect senior citizens who have a greater than average need for prescription drugs and a lower than average income. Of course, some of these seniors may soon have at least part of their prescription drug costs covered by Medicare.

2003 Ron Paul 39:2
Medicare is already on shaky financial ground, yet will soon be subsidizing prescription drug costs.  This is why Congress must address the issue of prescription drug costs. Of course Congress should respect our constitutional limits, and not further expand the role of government in the health care market.

2003 Ron Paul 39:3
Fortunately, there are a number of market-oriented policies Congress can adopt to lower the prices of prescription drugs. This is because the main reason prescription drugs cost so much is government policies that give a few large companies monopoly power. For example, policies restricting the importation of quality pharmaceuticals enable pharmaceutical companies to charge above-market prices for their products. Therefore, all members of Congress who are serious about lowering prescription drug prices should support HR 2427.

2003 Ron Paul 39:4
Opponents of this bill have waged a hysterical campaign to convince members that this amendment will result in consumers purchasing unsafe products. Accepting this argument not only requires one to ignore HR 2427’s numerous provisions that ensure the safety of imported drugs, it also assumes that consumers will buy cheap pharmaceuticals without regard to whether they are buying quality products. The experience of my constituents who are currently traveling to foreign countries to purchase prescription drugs shows that consumers are quite capable of purchasing safe products without interference from the nanny state. 

2003 Ron Paul 39:5
Furthermore, if the supporters of the status quo were truly concerned about promoting health, instead of protecting the special privileges of powerful companies, they would be reforming current policies that endanger health by artificially raising the cost of prescription drugs. Oftentimes, lower income Americans will take less of a prescription medicine than necessary to save money. Some even forego other necessities, including food, in order to afford their medications. By reducing the prices of pharmaceuticals, HR 2427 will help those who have to choose between prescriptions drugs and other necessities.

2003 Ron Paul 39:6
Other opponents of this bill have charged that creating a free market in pharmaceuticals will impose Canadian style price controls on prescription drugs. This is nonsense. Nothing in HR 2427 gives the government any additional power to determine pharmaceutical prices. HR 2427 simply lowers trade barriers, thus taking a step toward ensuring that Americans pay a true market price for prescription drugs. This market price will likely be lower than the current price because current government policies raise the price of prescription drugs above what they would be in the market.

2003 Ron Paul 39:7
Today Americans enjoy access to many imported goods that are subject to price controls, even goods that receive government subsidies in their countries of origin. Interestingly, some people support liberalized trade with Communist China, which is hardly a free economy, while opposing HR 2427! American policy has always been based on the principle that our economy is strengthened by free trade even when our trading partners engage in market distorting polices as price controls and industrial subsidizes. There is no good reason why pharmaceuticals should be an exception to the rule.

2003 Ron Paul 39:8
Finally, Mr. Speaker, I wish to express my disappointment with the numerous D.C.-based “free-market” organizations that are opposing this bill.  Anyone following this debate could be excused for thinking they have entered into a Twilight Zone episode where “libertarian” policy wonks argue that the federal government must protect citizens from purchasing the pharmaceuticals of their choice, endorse protectionism, and argue that the federal government has a moral duty to fashion polices designed to protect the pharmaceutical companies’ profit margins. I do not wish to speculate on the motivation behind this deviation from free-market principles among groups that normally uphold the principles of liberty. However, I do hope the vehemence with which these organizations are attacking this bill is motivated by sincere, if misguided, principle, not by the large donations some organizations have received from the pharmaceutical industry. If the latter is they case, then these groups have discredited themselves by suggesting that their free-market principles can be compromised when it serves the interests of their corporate donors.

2003 Ron Paul 39:9
In conclusion, Mr. Speaker, I once again urge my colleagues to prove they are serious about lowering the prices of prescription drugs and that they trust the people to do what is in their best interest by supporting HR 2427, the Pharmaceutical Market Access Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 40


July 25, 2003
Bring Back Honest Money

2003 Ron Paul 40:1
Mr. Speaker, I rise to introduce the Honest Money Act. The Honest Money Act repeals legal tender laws, a.k.a. forced tender laws, that compel American citizens to accept fiat (arbitrary) irredeemable paper-ticket or electronic money as their unit of account. 

2003 Ron Paul 40:2
Absent legal tender laws, individuals acting through the markets, rather than government dictates, determine what is to be used as money. Historically, the free-market choice for money has been some combination of gold and silver, whenever they were available. As Dr. Edwin Vieira, the nation’s top expert on constitutional money, states: “A free market functions most efficiently and most fairly when the market determines the quality and the quantity of money that’s being used.” 

2003 Ron Paul 40:3
While fiat money is widely accepted thanks to legal tender laws, it does not maintain its purchasing power. This works to the disadvantage of ordinary people who lose the purchasing power of their savings, pensions, annuities, and other promises of future payment. Most importantly, because of the subsidies our present monetary system provides to banks, which, as Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan has stated, “induces” the financial sector to increase leverage, the Federal Reserve can create additional money, in Mr. Greenspan’s words, “ without limit .” For this reason, absent legal tender laws, many citizens would refuse to accept fiat irredeemable paper-ticket or electronic money.  

2003 Ron Paul 40:4
Legal tender laws disadvantage ordinary citizens by forcing them to use money that is vulnerable to vast depreciation. As Stephen T. Byington wrote in the September 1895 issue of the American Federationist : “No legal tender law is ever needed to make men take good money; its only use is to make them take bad money. Kick it out!” Similarly, the American Federation of Labor asked: “If money is good and would be preferred by the people, then why are legal tender laws necessary? And, if money is not good and would not be preferred by the people, then why in a democracy should they be forced to use it?”

2003 Ron Paul 40:5
The American Federation of Labor understood how the erosion of the value of money cheated working people. Further, honest money, i.e., specie, was one of the three issues that encouraged ordinary people to organize into unions when the union movement began in the U.S. circa 1830.

2003 Ron Paul 40:6
While harming ordinary citizens, legal tender laws help expand the scope of government beyond that authorized under the Constitution. However, the primary beneficiaries of legal tender laws are financial institutions, especially banks, which have been improperly granted the special privilege of creating fiat irredeemable electronic money out of thin air through a process commonly called fractional reserve lending.  According to the Federal Reserve, since 1950 these private companies (banks) have created almost $8 trillion out of nothing. This has been enormously advantageous to them.

2003 Ron Paul 40:7
The advantages given banks and other financial institutions by our fiat monetary system, which is built on a foundation of legal tender laws, allow them to realize revenues that would not be available to these institutions in a free market. This represents legalized plunder of ordinary people. Legal tender laws thus enable the redistribution of wealth from those who produce it, mostly ordinary working people, to those who create and move around our irredeemable paper-ticket electronic money which is, in essence, just scrip.  

2003 Ron Paul 40:8
The drafters of the Constitution were well aware of how a government armed with legal tender powers could ravage the people’s liberty and prosperity. That is why the Constitution does not grant legal tender power to the federal government, and the states are empowered to make legal tender only out of gold and silver (see Article 1, Section 10). Instead, Congress was given the power to regulate money against a standard, i.e., the dollar. When Alexander Hamilton wrote the Coinage Act of 1792, he simply made into law the market-definition of a dollar as equaling the silver content of the Spanish milled dollar (371.25 grains of silver), which is the dollar referred to in the Constitution. This historical definition of the dollar has never been changed, and cannot be changed any more than the term “inch,” as a measure of length, can be changed. It is a gross misrepresentation to equate our irredeemable paper-ticket or electronic money to “dollars.”

2003 Ron Paul 40:9
However, during the 20 th century, the legal tender power enabled politicians to fool the public into believing the dollar no longer meant a weight of gold or silver. Instead, the government told the people that the dollar now meant a piece of government-issued paper backed up by nothing except the promises of the government to maintain a stable value of currency. Of course, history shows that the word of the government (to protect the value of the dollar) is literally not worth the paper it is printed on.  

2003 Ron Paul 40:10
Tragically, the Supreme Court has failed to protect the American people from unconstitutional legal tender laws. Salmon Chase, who served as Secretary of the Treasury in President Lincoln’s administration, when he was Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, dissenting in Knox vs. Lee, summed up the argument against legal tender laws in twelve words: “The legal tender quality [of money] is only valuable for the purposes of dishonesty .” [emphasis added.]

2003 Ron Paul 40:11
Another prescient Justice was Stephen Field, the only Justice to dissent in every legal tender case to come before the Court. Justice Field accurately described the dangers to our constitutional republic posed by legal tender laws: “The arguments in favor of the constitutionality of legal tender paper currency tend directly to break down the barriers which separate a government of limited powers from a government resting in the unrestrained will of Congress. Those limitations must be preserved, or our government will inevitably drift from the system established by our Fathers into a vast, centralized, and consolidated government.” A government with unrestrained powers is properly characterized as tyrannical.

2003 Ron Paul 40:12
Repeal of legal tender laws will help restore constitutional government and protect the people’s right to a medium of exchange chosen by the market, thereby protecting their current purchasing power as well as their pensions, savings, and other promises of future payment. Because honest money serves the needs of ordinary people, instead of fiat irredeemable paper-ticket electronic money that improperly transfers the wealth of society to a small specially privileged financial elite along with other special interests, I urge my colleagues to cosponsor the Honest Money Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 41


July 25, 2003
Stop Subsidizing Foreign Shrimpers

2003 Ron Paul 41:1
The United States domestic shrimping industry is a vital social and economic force in many coastal communities across the United States, including several in my congressional district.  A thriving shrimping industry benefits not only those who own and operate shrimp boats, but also food processors, hotels, restaurants, grocery stores, and those who work in and service these industries. Shrimping also serves as a key source of safe domestic food at a time when the nation is engaged in hostilities abroad.

2003 Ron Paul 41:2
Unfortunately, the federal government is strangling this vital industry with excessive regulations. For example, the federal government mandates catch reduction devices and turtle excluder devices (TEDS) on the industry. Our shrimpers’ foreign competitors operate without such regulations, placing them at a distinct advantage.   The mandatory use of these devices also results in a significant reduction in the amount of shrimp caught by domestic shrimpers, thus damaging their competitive position and market share.

2003 Ron Paul 41:3
Seven foreign countries (Thailand, Vietnam, India, China, Ecuador, Indonesia, and Brazil) have taken advantage of the domestic shrimping industry’s government-created vulnerabilities. These countries each exported in excess of 20,000,000 pounds of shrimp to the United States in the first 6 months of 2002. These seven countries supplied nearly 70 percent of all shrimp consumed in the United States in the first six months of 2002, and nearly 80 percent of all shrimp imported to this country in the same period!

2003 Ron Paul 41:4
Adding insult to injury the federal government is forcing American shrimpers to subsidize their competitors!  From 1999-2002, the United States government provided approximately $2,172,220,000 in financing and insurance for these foreign countries through the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC). Furthermore, the United States’ current exposure relative to these countries through the Export-Import Bank totals approximately $14,800,000,000. Thus, the United States taxpayer is providing a subsidy of at least $16,972,220,000 to the home countries of the leading foreign competitors of American shrimpers!   

2003 Ron Paul 41:5
Many of the countries in question do not have free-market economies. Thus, the participation of these countries in United States-supported international financial regimes amounts to American shrimpers directly subsidizing their international competitors. In any case, providing aid to any of these countries indirectly benefits foreign shrimpers because of the fungibility of money.

2003 Ron Paul 41:6
In order to ensure that American shrimpers are not forced to subsidize their competitors, my legislation forbids taxpayer dollars from being used to support Export-Import and OPIC subsidies to the countries that imported more than 20 million pounds of shrimp in the first six months of 2002. 

2003 Ron Paul 41:7
Mr. Speaker, it is time for Congress to stop subsidizing the domestic shrimping industry’s leading competitors. Otherwise, the government-manufactured depression in the price of shrimp will decimate the domestic shrimping industry and the communities whose economies depend on this industry. I therefore hope that Congress will soon stand up for American shrimpers by passing my Shrimp Importation Financing Fairness Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 42


September 5, 2003
Paper Money and Tyranny

2003 Ron Paul 42:1
All great republics throughout history cherished sound money. This meant that the monetary unit was a commodity of honest weight and purity. When money was sound, civilizations were found to be more prosperous and freedom thrived. The less free a society becomes, the greater the likelihood its money is being debased and the economic well-being of its citizens diminished.

2003 Ron Paul 42:2
            Alan Greenspan, years before he became Federal Reserve Board Chairman in charge of flagrantly debasing the U.S. dollar, wrote about this connection between sound money, prosperity, and freedom. In his article “Gold and Economic Freedom” ( The Objectivist, July 1966), Greenspan starts by saying:  “An almost hysterical antagonism toward the gold standard is an issue that unites statists of all persuasions. They seem to sense…that gold and economic freedom are inseparable.”  Further he states that:  “Under the gold standard, a free banking system stands as the protector of an economy’s stability and balanced growth.”  Astoundingly, Mr. Greenspan’s analysis of the 1929 market crash, and how the Fed precipitated the crisis, directly parallels current conditions we are experiencing under his management of the Fed. Greenspan explains:   “The excess credit which the Fed pumped into the economy spilled over into the stock market- triggering a fantastic speculative boom.”   And, “…By 1929 the speculative imbalances had become overwhelming and unmanageable by the Fed.”  Greenspan concluded his article by stating: “In the absence of the gold standard, there is no way to protect savings from confiscation through inflation.”   He explains that the “shabby secret” of the proponents of big government and paper money is that deficit spending is simply nothing more than a “scheme for the hidden confiscation of wealth.”  Yet here we are today with a purely fiat monetary system, managed almost exclusively by Alan Greenspan, who once so correctly denounced the Fed’s role in the Depression while recognizing the need for sound money.

2003 Ron Paul 42:3
            The Founders of this country, and a large majority of the American people up until the 1930s, disdained paper money, respected commodity money, and disapproved of a central bank’s monopoly control of money creation and interest rates. Ironically, it was the abuse of the gold standard, the Fed’s credit-creating habits of the 1920s, and its subsequent mischief in the 1930s, that not only gave us the Great Depression, but also prolonged it. Yet sound money was blamed for all the suffering. That’s why people hardly objected when Roosevelt and his statist friends confiscated gold and radically debased the currency, ushering in the age of worldwide fiat currencies with which the international economy struggles today.

2003 Ron Paul 42:4
            If honest money and freedom are inseparable, as Mr. Greenspan argued, and paper money leads to tyranny, one must wonder why it’s so popular with economists, the business community, bankers, and our government officials. The simplest explanation is that it’s a human trait to always seek the comforts of wealth with the least amount of effort. This desire is quite positive when it inspires hard work and innovation in a capitalist society. Productivity is improved and the standard of living goes up for everyone. This process has permitted the poorest in today’s capitalist countries to enjoy luxuries never available to the royalty of old.

2003 Ron Paul 42:5
            But this human trait of seeking wealth and comfort with the least amount of effort is often abused. It leads some to believe that by certain monetary manipulations, wealth can be made more available to everyone.   Those who believe in fiat money often believe wealth can be increased without a commensurate amount of hard work and innovation. They also come to believe that savings and market control of interest rates are not only unnecessary, but actually hinder a productive growing economy. Concern for liberty is replaced by the illusion that material benefits can be more easily obtained with fiat money than through hard work and ingenuity. The perceived benefits soon become of greater concern for society than the preservation of liberty. This does not mean proponents of fiat money embark on a crusade to promote tyranny, though that is what it leads to, but rather they hope they have found the philosopher’s stone and a modern alternative to the challenge of turning lead into gold.

2003 Ron Paul 42:6
            Our Founders thoroughly understood this issue, and warned us against the temptation to seek wealth and fortune without the work and savings that real prosperity requires. James Madison warned of “The pestilent effects of paper money,” as the Founders had vivid memories of the destructiveness of the Continental dollar. George Mason of Virginia said that he had a “Mortal hatred to paper money.”  Constitutional Convention delegate Oliver Ellsworth from Connecticut thought the convention “A favorable moment to shut and bar the door against paper money.”   This view of the evils of paper money was shared by almost all the delegates to the convention, and was the reason the Constitution limited congressional authority to deal with the issue and mandated that only gold and silver could be legal tender. Paper money was prohibited and no central bank was authorized. Over and above the economic reasons for honest money, however, Madison argued the moral case for such. Paper money, he explained, destroyed “The necessary confidence between man and man, on necessary confidence in public councils, on the industry and morals of people and on the character of republican government.”

2003 Ron Paul 42:7
            The Founders were well aware of the biblical admonitions against dishonest weights and measures, debased silver, and watered-down wine. The issue of sound money throughout history has been as much a moral issue as an economic or political issue.

2003 Ron Paul 42:8
            Even with this history and great concern expressed by the Founders, the barriers to paper money have been torn asunder. The Constitution has not been changed, but is no longer applied to the issue of money. It was once explained to me, during the debate over going to war in Iraq, that a declaration of war was not needed because to ask for such a declaration was “frivolous” and that the portion of the Constitution dealing with congressional war power was “anachronistic.”  So too, it seems that the power over money given to Congress alone and limited to coinage and honest weights, is now also “anachronistic.”

2003 Ron Paul 42:9
            If indeed our generation can make the case for paper money, issued by an unauthorized central bank, it behooves us to at least have enough respect for the Constitution to amend it in a proper fashion. Ignoring the Constitution in order to perform a pernicious act is detrimental in two ways. First, debasing the currency as a deliberate policy is economically destructive beyond measure. Second, doing it without consideration for the rule of law undermines the entire fabric of our Constitutional republic.

2003 Ron Paul 42:10
            Though the need for sound money is currently not a pressing issue for Congress, it’s something that cannot be ignored because serious economic problems resulting from our paper money system are being forced upon us. As a matter of fact, we deal with the consequences on a daily basis, yet fail to see the connection between our economic problems and the mischief orchestrated by the Federal Reserve.

2003 Ron Paul 42:11
            All the great religions teach honesty in money, and the economic shortcomings of paper money were well known when the Constitution was written, so we must try to understand why an entire generation of Americans have come to accept paper money without hesitation, without question.  Most Americans are oblivious to the entire issue of the nature and importance of money. Many in authority, however, have either been misled by false notions or see that the power to create money is indeed a power they enjoy, as they promote their agenda of welfarism at home and empire abroad.

2003 Ron Paul 42:12
            Money is a moral, economic, and political issue. Since the monetary unit measures every economic transaction, from wages to prices, taxes, and interest rates, it is vitally important that its value is honestly established in the marketplace without bankers, government, politicians, or the Federal Reserve manipulating its value to serve special interests.

Money As a Moral Issue

2003 Ron Paul 42:13
The moral issue regarding money should be the easiest to understand, but almost no one in Washington thinks of money in these terms. Although there is a growing and deserved distrust in government per se, trust in money and the Federal Reserve’s ability to manage it remains strong. No one would welcome a counterfeiter to town, yet this same authority is blindly given to our central bank without any serious oversight by the Congress.

2003 Ron Paul 42:14
            When the government can replicate the monetary unit at will without regard to cost, whether it’s paper currency or a computer entry, it’s morally identical to the counterfeiter who illegally prints currency. Both ways, it’s fraud.

2003 Ron Paul 42:15
            A fiat monetary system allows power and influence to fall into the hands of those who control the creation of new money, and to those who get to use the money or credit early in its circulation. The insidious and eventual cost falls on unidentified victims who are usually oblivious to the cause of their plight. This system of legalized plunder (though not constitutional) allows one group to benefit at the expense of another. An actual transfer of wealth goes from the poor and the middle class to those in privileged financial positions.

2003 Ron Paul 42:16
            In many societies the middle class has actually been wiped out by monetary inflation, which always accompanies fiat money. The high cost of living and loss of jobs hits one segment of society, while in the early stages of inflation, the business class actually benefits from the easy credit. An astute stock investor or home builder can make millions in the boom phase of the business cycle, while the poor and those dependent on fixed incomes can’t keep up with the rising cost of living.

2003 Ron Paul 42:17
            Fiat money is also immoral because it allows government to finance special interest legislation that otherwise would have to be paid for by direct taxation or by productive enterprise. This transfer of wealth occurs without directly taking the money out of someone’s pocket. Every dollar created dilutes the value of existing dollars in circulation. Those individuals who worked hard, paid their taxes, and saved some money for a rainy day are hit the hardest, with their dollars being depreciated in value while earning interest that is kept artificially low by the Federal Reserve easy-credit policy. The easy credit helps investors and consumers who have no qualms about going into debt and even declaring bankruptcy.

2003 Ron Paul 42:18
            If one sees the welfare state and foreign militarism as improper and immoral, one understands how the license to print money permits these policies to go forward far more easily than if they had to be paid for immediately by direct taxation.

2003 Ron Paul 42:19
            Printing money, which is literally inflation, is nothing more than a sinister and evil form of hidden taxation. It’s unfair and deceptive, and accordingly strongly opposed by the authors of the Constitution. That is why there is no authority for Congress, the Federal Reserve, or the executive branch to operate the current system of money we have today.

Money As a Political Issue

2003 Ron Paul 42:20
            Although the money issue today is of little political interest to the parties and politicians, it should not be ignored. Policy makers must contend with the consequences of the business cycle, which result from the fiat monetary system under which we operate. They may not understand the connection now, but eventually they must.

2003 Ron Paul 42:21
            In the past, money and gold have been dominant issues in several major political campaigns.  We find that when the people have had a voice in the matter, they inevitably chose gold over paper. To the common man, it just makes sense. As a matter of fact, a large number of Americans, perhaps a majority, still believe our dollar is backed by huge hoards of gold in Fort Knox.

2003 Ron Paul 42:22
            The monetary issue, along with the desire to have free trade among the states, prompted those at the Constitutional Convention to seek solutions to problems that plagued the post-revolutionary war economy. This post-war recession was greatly aggravated by the collapse of the unsound fiat Continental dollar. The people, through their representatives, spoke loudly and clearly for gold and silver over paper.

2003 Ron Paul 42:23
            Andrew Jackson, a strong proponent of gold and opponent of central banking (the Second Bank of the United States,) was a hero to the working class and was twice elected president. This issue was fully debated in his presidential campaigns. The people voted for gold over paper.

2003 Ron Paul 42:24
            In the 1870s, the people once again spoke out clearly against the greenback inflation of Lincoln. Notoriously, governments go to paper money while rejecting gold to promote unpopular and unaffordable wars. The return to gold in 1879 went smoothly and was welcomed by the people, putting behind them the disastrous Civil War inflationary period.

2003 Ron Paul 42:25
            Grover Cleveland, elected twice to the presidency, was also a strong advocate of the gold standard.

2003 Ron Paul 42:26
            Again, in the presidential race of 1896, William McKinley argued the case for gold. In spite of the great orations by William Jennings Bryant, who supported monetary inflation and made a mocking “Cross of Gold” speech, the people rallied behind McKinley’s bland but correct arguments for sound money.

2003 Ron Paul 42:27
            The 20 th Century was much less sympathetic to gold. Since 1913 central banking has been accepted in the United States without much debate, despite the many economic and political horrors caused or worsened by the Federal Reserve since its establishment. The ups and downs of the economy have all come as a consequence of Fed policies, from the Great Depression to the horrendous stagflation of the ‘70s, as well as the current ongoing economic crisis.

2003 Ron Paul 42:28
             A central bank and fiat money enable government to maintain an easy war policy that under strict monetary rules would not be achievable. In other words, countries with sound monetary policies would rarely go to war because they could not afford to, especially if they were not attacked.   The people could not be taxed enough to support wars without destroying the economy. But by printing money, the cost can be delayed and hidden, sometimes for years if not decades. To be truly opposed to preemptive and unnecessary wars one must advocate sound money to prevent the promoters of war from financing their imperialism.

2003 Ron Paul 42:29
            Look at how the military budget is exploding, deficits are exploding, and tax revenues are going down. No problem; the Fed is there and will print whatever is needed to meet our military commitments, whether it’s wise to do so or not.

2003 Ron Paul 42:30
            The money issue should indeed be a gigantic political issue. Fiat money hurts the economy, finances wars, and allows for excessive welfarism. When these connections are realized and understood, it will once again become a major political issue, since paper money never lasts. Ultimately politicians will not have a choice of whether to address or take a position on the money issue. The people and circumstances will demand it.

2003 Ron Paul 42:31
            We do hear some talk about monetary policy and criticism directed toward the Federal Reserve, but it falls far short of what I’m talking about. Big-spending welfarists constantly complain about Fed policy, usually demanding lower interest rates even when rates are at historic lows. Big-government conservatives promoting grand worldwide military operations, while arguing that “deficits don’t matter” as long as marginal tax rates are lowered, also constantly criticize the Fed for high interest rates and lack of liquidity. Coming from both the left and the right, these demands would not occur if money could not be created out of thin air at will. Both sides are asking for the same thing from the Fed for different reasons. They want the printing presses to run faster and create more credit, so that the economy will be healed like magic- or so they believe.

2003 Ron Paul 42:32
            This is not the kind of interest in the Fed that we need. I’m anticipating that we should and one day will be forced to deal with the definition of the dollar and what money should consist of. The current superficial discussion about money merely shows a desire to tinker with the current system in hopes of improving the deteriorating economy. There will be a point, though, when the tinkering will no longer be of any benefit and even the best advice will be of no value. We have just gone through two-and-a-half years of tinkering with 13 rate cuts, and recovery has not yet been achieved. It’s just possible that we’re much closer than anyone realizes to that day when it will become absolutely necessary to deal with the monetary issue- both philosophically and strategically- and forget about the band-aid approach to the current system.

Money as an Economic Issue

2003 Ron Paul 42:33
For a time, the economic consequences of paper money may seem benign and even helpful, but are always disruptive to economic growth and prosperity.

2003 Ron Paul 42:34
            Economic planners of the Keynesian-socialist type have always relished control over money creation in their efforts to regulate and plan the economy. They have no qualms with using this power to pursue their egalitarian dreams of wealth redistribution. That force and fraud are used to make the economic system supposedly fairer is of little concern to them.

2003 Ron Paul 42:35
            There are also many conservatives who do not endorse central economic planning as those on the left do, but nevertheless concede this authority to the Federal Reserve to manipulate the economy through monetary policy. Only a small group of constitutionalists, libertarians, and Austrian free-market economists reject the notion that central planning, through interest-rate and money-supply manipulation, is a productive endeavor.

2003 Ron Paul 42:36
            Many sincere politicians, bureaucrats, and bankers endorse the current system, not out of malice or greed, but because it’s the only system they have know.  The principles of sound money and free market banking are not taught in our universities. The overwhelming consensus in Washington, as well as around the world, is that commodity money without a central bank is no longer practical or necessary. Be assured, though, that certain individuals who greatly benefit from a paper money system know exactly why the restraints that a commodities standard would have are unacceptable.

2003 Ron Paul 42:37
            Though the economic consequences of paper money in the early stage affect lower-income and middle-class citizens, history shows that when the destruction of monetary value becomes rampant, nearly everyone suffers and the economic and political structure becomes unstable. There’s good reason for all of us to be concerned about our monetary system and the future of the dollar.

2003 Ron Paul 42:38
            Nations that live beyond their means must always pay for their extravagance. It’s easy to understand why future generations inherit a burden when the national debt piles up. This requires others to pay the interest and debts when they come due. The victims are never the recipients of the borrowed funds. But this is not exactly what happens when a country pays off its debt. The debt, in nominal terms, always goes up, and since it is still accepted by mainstream economists that just borrowing endlessly is not the road to permanent prosperity, real debt must be reduced. Depreciating the value of the dollar does that. If the dollar loses 10% of its value, the national debt of $6.5 trillion is reduced in real terms by $650 billion dollars. That’s a pretty neat trick and quite helpful- to the government.

2003 Ron Paul 42:39
That’s why the Fed screams about a coming deflation, so it can continue the devaluation of the dollar unabated. The politicians don’t mind, the bankers welcome the business activity, and the recipients of the funds passed out by Congress never complain. The greater the debt, the greater the need to inflate the currency, since debt cannot be the source of long-term wealth. Individuals and corporations who borrow too much eventually must cut back and pay off debt and start anew, but governments rarely do.

2003 Ron Paul 42:40
But where’s the hitch?  This process, which seems to be a creative way of paying off debt, eventually undermines the capitalist structure of the economy, thus making it difficult to produce wealth, and that’s when the whole process comes to an end. This system causes many economic problems, but most of them stem from the Fed’s interference with the market rate of interest that it achieves through credit creation and printing money.

2003 Ron Paul 42:41
            Nearly 100 years ago, Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises explained and predicted the failure of socialism. Without a pricing mechanism, the delicate balance between consumers and producers would be destroyed. Freely fluctuating prices provide vital information to the entrepreneur who is making key decisions on production. Without this information, major mistakes are made. A central planning bureaucrat cannot be a substitute for the law of supply and demand.

2003 Ron Paul 42:42
            Though generally accepted by most modern economists and politicians, there is little hesitancy in accepting the omnipotent wisdom of the Federal Reserve to know the “price” of money – the interest rate – and its proper supply. For decades, and especially during the 1990s – when Chairman Greenspan was held in such high esteem, and no one dared question his judgment or the wisdom of the system- this process was allowed to run unimpeded by political or market restraints. Just as we must eventually pay for our perpetual deficits, continuous manipulation of interest and credit will also extract a payment.

2003 Ron Paul 42:43
            Artificially low interest rates deceive investors into believing that rates are low because savings are high and represent funds not spent on consumption. When the Fed creates bank deposits out of thin air making loans available at below-market rates, mal-investment and overcapacity results, setting the stage for the next recession or depression. The easy credit policy is welcomed by many:  stock-market investors, home builders, home buyers, congressional spendthrifts, bankers, and many other consumers who enjoy borrowing at low rates and not worrying about repayment. However, perpetual good times cannot come from a printing press or easy credit created by a Federal Reserve computer. The piper will demand payment, and the downturn in the business cycle will see to it. The downturn is locked into place by the artificial boom that everyone enjoys, despite the dreams that we have ushered in a “new economic era.”  Let there be no doubt: the business cycle, the stagflation, the recessions, the depressions, and the inflations are not a result of capitalism and sound money, but rather are a direct result of paper money and a central bank that is incapable of managing it.

2003 Ron Paul 42:44
            Our current monetary system makes it tempting for all parties, individuals, corporations, and government to go into debt. It encourages consumption over investment and production. Incentives to save are diminished by the Fed’s making new credit available to everyone and keeping interest rates on saving so low that few find it advisable to save for a rainy day. This is made worse by taxing interest earned on savings. It plays havoc with those who do save and want to live off their interest. The artificial rates may be 4, 5, or even 6% below the market rate, and the savers- many who are elderly and on fixed incomes- suffer unfairly at the hands of Alan Greenspan, who believes that resorting to money creation will solve our problems and give us perpetual prosperity.

2003 Ron Paul 42:45
            Lowering interest rates at times, especially early in the stages of monetary debasement, will produce the desired effects and stimulate another boom-bust cycle. But eventually the distortions and imbalances between consumption and production, and the excessive debt, prevent the monetary stimulus from doing very much to boost the economy. Just look at what’s been happening in Japan for the last 12 years. When conditions get bad enough the only recourse will be to have major monetary reform to restore confidence in the system.

2003 Ron Paul 42:46
            The two conditions that result from fiat money that are more likely to concern the people are inflation of prices and unemployment. Unfortunately, few realize these problems are directly related to our monetary system. Instead of demanding reforms, the chorus from both the right and left is for the Fed to do more of the same- only faster. If our problem stems from easy credit and interest-rate manipulation by the Fed, demanding more will not do much to help. Sadly, it will only make our problems worse.

2003 Ron Paul 42:47
            Ironically, the more successful the money managers are at restoring growth or prolonging the boom with their monetary machinations, the greater are the distortions and imbalances in the economy. This means that when corrections are eventually forced upon us, they are much more painful and more people suffer with the correction lasting longer.

Today’s Conditions

2003 Ron Paul 42:48
Today’s economic conditions reflect a fiat monetary system held together by many tricks and luck over the past 30 years. The world has been awash in paper money since removal of the last vestige of the gold standard by Richard Nixon when he buried the Bretton Woods agreement- the gold exchange standard- on August 15, 1971. Since then we’ve been on a worldwide paper dollar standard. Quite possibly we are seeing the beginning of the end of that system. If so, tough times are ahead for the United States and the world economy.

2003 Ron Paul 42:49
            A paper monetary standard means there are no restraints on the printing press or on federal deficits. In 1971, M3 was $776 billion; today it stands at $8.9 trillion, an 1100% increase. Our national debt in 1971 was $408 billion; today it stands at $6.8 trillion, a 1600% increase. Since that time, our dollar has lost almost 80% of its purchasing power. Common sense tells us that this process is not sustainable and something has to give. So far, no one in Washington seems interested.

2003 Ron Paul 42:50
            Although dollar creation is ultimately the key to its value, many other factors play a part in its perceived value, such as: the strength of our economy, our political stability, our military power, the benefit of the dollar being the key reserve currency of the world, and the relative weakness of other nation’s economies and their currencies. For these reasons, the dollar has enjoyed a special place in the world economy. Increases in productivity have also helped to bestow undeserved trust in our economy with consumer prices, to some degree, being held in check and fooling the people, at the urging of the Fed, that “inflation” is not a problem. Trust is an important factor in how the dollar is perceived. Sound money encourages trust, but trust can come from these other sources as well. But when this trust is lost, which always occurs with paper money, the delayed adjustments can hit with a vengeance.

2003 Ron Paul 42:51
            Following the breakdown of the Bretton Woods agreement, the world essentially accepted the dollar as a replacement for gold, to be held in reserve upon which even more monetary expansion could occur. It was a great arrangement that up until now seemed to make everyone happy.

2003 Ron Paul 42:52
            We own the printing press and create as many dollars as we please. These dollars are used to buy federal debt. This allows our debt to be monetized and the spendthrift Congress, of course, finds this a delightful convenience and never complains. As the dollars circulate through our fractional reserve banking system, they expand many times over. With our excess dollars at home, our trading partners are only too happy to accept these dollars in order to sell us their products. Because our dollar is relatively strong compared to other currencies, we can buy foreign products at a discounted price. In other words, we get to create the world’s reserve currency at no cost, spend it overseas, and receive manufactured goods in return. Our excess dollars go abroad and other countries-especially Japan and China- are only too happy to loan them right back to us by buying our government and GSE debt. Up until now both sides have been happy with this arrangement.

2003 Ron Paul 42:53
            But all good things must come to an end and this arrangement is ending. The process put us into a position of being a huge debtor nation, with our current account deficit of more than $600 billion per year now exceeding 5% of our GDP. We now owe foreigners more than any other nation ever owed in all of history, over $3 trillion.

2003 Ron Paul 42:54
            A debt of this sort always ends by the currency of the debtor nation decreasing in value. And that’s what has started to happen with the dollar, although it still has a long way to go. Our free lunch cannot last. Printing money, buying foreign products, and selling foreign holders of dollars our debt ends when the foreign holders of this debt become concerned with the dollar’s future value.

2003 Ron Paul 42:55
            Once this process starts, interest rates will rise. And in recent weeks, despite the frenetic effort of the Fed to keep interest rates low, they are actually rising instead. The official explanation is that this is due to an economic rebound with an increase in demand for loans. Yet a decrease in demand for our debt and reluctance to hold our dollars is a more likely cause. Only time will tell whether the economy rebounds to any significant degree, but one must be aware that rising interest rates and serious price inflation can also reflect a weak dollar and a weak economy. The stagflation of the 1970s baffled many conventional economists, but not the Austrian economists. Many other countries have in the past suffered from the extremes of inflation in an inflationary depression, and we are not immune from that happening here. Our monetary and fiscal policies are actually conducive to such a scenario.

2003 Ron Paul 42:56
            In the short run, the current system gives us a free ride, our paper buys cheap goods from overseas, and foreigners risk all by financing our extravagance. But in the long run, we will surely pay for living beyond our means. Debt will be paid for one way or another. An inflated currency always comes back to haunt those who enjoyed the “benefits” of inflation. Although this process is extremely dangerous, many economists and politicians do not see it as a currency problem and are only too willing to find a villain to attack. Surprisingly the villain is often the foreigner who foolishly takes our paper for useful goods and accommodates us by loaning the proceeds back to us. It’s true that the system encourages exportation of jobs as we buy more and more foreign goods. But nobody understands the Fed role in this, so the cries go out to punish the competition with tariffs. Protectionism is a predictable consequence of paper- money inflation, just as is the impoverishment of an entire middle class.  It should surprise no one that even in the boom phase of the 1990s, there were still many people who became poorer. Yet all we hear are calls for more government mischief to correct the problems with tariffs, increased welfare for the poor, increased unemployment benefits, deficit spending, and special interest tax reduction, none of which can solve the problems ingrained in a system that operates with paper money and a central bank.

2003 Ron Paul 42:57
            If inflation were equitable and treated all classes the same, it would be less socially divisive. But while some see their incomes going up above the rate of inflation (movie stars, CEOs, stock brokers, speculators, professional athletes,) others see their incomes stagnate like lower-middle-income workers, retired people, and farmers. Likewise, the rise in the cost of living hurts the poor and middle class more than the wealthy. Because inflation treats certain groups unfairly, anger and envy are directed toward those who have benefited.

2003 Ron Paul 42:58
            The long-term philosophic problem with this is that the central bank and the fiat monetary system are not blamed; instead free market capitalism is. This is what happened in the 1930s. The Keynesians, who grew to dominate economic thinking at the time, erroneously blamed the gold standard, balanced budgets, and capitalism instead of tax increases, tariffs, and Fed policy. This country cannot afford another attack on economic liberty similar to what followed the 1929 crash that ushered in the economic interventionism and inflationism which we have been saddled with ever since. These policies have brought us to the brink of another colossal economic downturn and we need to be prepared.

2003 Ron Paul 42:59
            Big business and banking deserve our harsh criticism, but not because they are big or because they make a lot of money. Our criticism should come because of the special benefits they receive from a monetary system designed to assist the business class at the expense of the working class. Labor leader Samuel Gompers understood this and feared paper money and a central bank while arguing the case for gold. Since the monetary system is used to finance deficits that come from war expenditures, the military industrial complex is a strong supporter of the current monetary system.

2003 Ron Paul 42:60
            Liberals foolishly believe that they can control the process and curtail the benefits going to corporations and banks by increasing the spending for welfare for the poor. But this never happens. Powerful financial special interests control the government spending process and throw only crumbs to the poor. The fallacy with this approach is that the advocates fail to see the harm done to the poor, with cost of living increases and job losses that are a natural consequence of monetary debasement. Therefore, even more liberal control over the spending process can never compensate for the great harm done to the economy and the poor by the Federal Reserve’s effort to manage an unmanageable fiat monetary system.

2003 Ron Paul 42:61
            Economic intervention, financed by inflation, is high-stakes government. It provides the incentive for the big money to “invest” in gaining government control. The big money comes from those who have it- corporations and banking interests. That’s why literally billions of dollars are spent on elections and lobbying. The only way to restore equity is to change the primary function of government from economic planning and militarism to protecting liberty. Without money, the poor and middle class are disenfranchised since access for the most part requires money. Obviously, this is not a partisan issue since both major parties are controlled by wealthy special interests. Only the rhetoric is different.

2003 Ron Paul 42:62
            Our current economic problems are directly related to the monetary excesses of three decades and the more recent efforts by the Federal Reserve to thwart the correction that the market is forcing upon us. Since 1998, there has been a sustained attack on corporate profits. Before that, profits and earnings were inflated and fictitious, with WorldCom and Enron being prime examples. In spite of the 13 rate cuts since 2001, economic growth has not been restored.

2003 Ron Paul 42:63
             Paper money encourages speculation, excessive debt, and misdirected investments. The market, however, always moves in the direction of eliminating bad investments, liquidating debt, and reducing speculative excesses. What we have seen, especially since the stock market peak of early 2000, is a knock-down, drag-out battle between the Fed’s effort to avoid a recession, limit the recession, and stimulate growth with its only tool, money creation, while the market demands the elimination of bad investments and excess debt. The Fed was also motivated to save the stock market from collapsing, which in some ways they have been able to do. The market, in contrast, will insist on liquidation of unsustainable debt, removal of investment mistakes made over several decades, and a dramatic revaluation of the stock market.   In this go-around, the Fed has pulled out all the stops and is more determined than ever, yet the market is saying that new and healthy growth cannot occur until a major cleansing of the system occurs. Does anyone think that tariffs and interest rates of 1% will encourage the rebuilding of our steel and textile industries anytime soon? Obviously, something more is needed.

2003 Ron Paul 42:64
            The world central bankers are concerned with the lack of response to low interest rates and they have joined in a concerted effort to rescue the world economy through a policy of protecting the dollar’s role in the world economy, denying that inflation exists, and justifying unlimited expansion of the dollar money supply. To maintain confidence in the dollar, gold prices must be held in check. In the 1960s our government didn’t want a vote of no confidence in the dollar, and for a couple of decades, the price of gold was artificially held at $35 per ounce.  That, of course, did not last.

2003 Ron Paul 42:65
            In recent years, there has been a coordinated effort by the world central bankers to keep the gold price in check by dumping part of their large horde of gold into the market. This has worked to a degree, but just as it could not be sustained in the 1960s, until Nixon declared the Bretton Woods agreement dead in 1971, this effort will fail as well.

2003 Ron Paul 42:66
            The market price of gold is important because it reflects the ultimate confidence in the dollar. An artificially low price for gold contributes to false confidence and when this is lost, more chaos ensues as the market adjusts for the delay.

2003 Ron Paul 42:67
            Monetary policy today is designed to demonetize gold and guarantee for the first time that paper can serve as an adequate substitute in the hands of wise central bankers. Trust, then, has to be transferred from gold to the politicians and bureaucrats who are in charge of our monetary system. This fails to recognize the obvious reason that market participants throughout history have always preferred to deal with real assets, real money, rather than government paper. This contest between paper and honest money is of much greater significance than many realize. We should know the outcome of this struggle within the next decade.

2003 Ron Paul 42:68
            Alan Greenspan, although once a strong advocate for the gold standard, now believes he knows what the outcome of this battle will be. Is it just wishful thinking on his part? In an answer to a question I asked before the Financial Services Committee in February 2003, Chairman Greenspan made an effort to convince me that paper money now works as well as gold: “I have been quite surprised, and I must say pleased, by the fact that central banks have been able to effectively simulate many of the characteristics of the gold standard by constraining the degree of finance in a manner which effectively brought down the general price levels.”  Earlier, in December 2002, Mr. Greenspan spoke before the Economic Club of New York and addressed the same subject: “The record of the past 20 years appears to underscore the observation that, although pressures for excess issuance of fiat money are chronic, a prudent monetary policy maintained over a protracted period of time can contain the forces of inflation.”  There are several problems with this optimistic assessment. First, efficient central bankers will never replace the invisible hand of a commodity monetary standard. Second, using government price indexes to measure the success of a managed fiat currency should not be reassuring. These indexes can be arbitrarily altered to imply a successful monetary policy. Also, price increases of consumer goods are not a litmus test for measuring the harm done by the money managers at the Fed. The development of overcapacity, excessive debt, and speculation still occur, even when prices happen to remain reasonably stable due to increases in productivity and technology. Chairman Greenspan makes his argument because he hopes he’s right that sound money is no longer necessary, and also because it’s an excuse to keep the inflation of the money supply going for as long as possible, hoping a miracle will restore sound growth to the economy. But that’s only a dream.

2003 Ron Paul 42:69
            We are now faced with an economy that is far from robust and may get a lot worse before rebounding. If not now, the time will soon come when the conventional wisdom of the last 90 years, since the Fed was created, will have to be challenged. If the conditions have changed and the routine of fiscal and monetary stimulation don’t work, we better prepare ourselves for the aftermath of a failed dollar system, which will not be limited to the United States.

2003 Ron Paul 42:70
            An interesting headline appeared in the New York Times on July 31, 2003, “Commodity Costs Soar, But Factories Don’t Bustle.”  What is observed here is a sea change in attitude by investors shifting their investment funds and speculation into things of real value and out of financial areas, such as stocks and bonds.  This shift shows that in spite of the most aggressive Fed policy in history in the past three years, the economy remains sluggish and interest rates are actually rising. What can the Fed do?  If this trend continues, there’s little they can do. Not only do I believe this trend will continue, I believe it’s likely to accelerate. This policy plays havoc with our economy; reduces revenues, prompts increases in federal spending, increases in deficits and debt occur, and interest costs rise, compounding our budgetary woes.

2003 Ron Paul 42:71
            The set of circumstances we face today are unique and quite different from all the other recessions the Federal Reserve has had to deal with. Generally, interest rates are raised to slow the economy and dampen price inflation. At the bottom of the cycle interest rates are lowered to stimulate the economy. But this time around, the recession came in spite of huge and significant interest rate reductions by the Fed. This aggressive policy did not prevent the recession as was hoped; so far it has not produced the desired recovery. Now we’re at the bottom of the cycle and interest rates not only can’t be lowered, they are rising. This is a unique and dangerous combination of events. This set of circumstances can only occur with fiat money and indicates that further manipulation of the money supply and interest rates by the Fed will have little if any effect.

2003 Ron Paul 42:72
            The odds aren’t very good that the Fed will adopt a policy of not inflating the money supply because of some very painful consequences that would result. Also there would be a need to remove the pressure on the Fed to accommodate the big spenders in Congress. Since there are essentially only two groups that have any influence on spending levels, big-government liberals and big- government conservatives, that’s not about to happen. Poverty is going to worsen due to our monetary and fiscal policies, so spending on the war on poverty will accelerate. Our obsession with policing the world, nation building, and pre-emptive war are not likely to soon go away, since both Republican and Democratic leaders endorse them. Instead, the cost of defending the American empire is going to accelerate. A country that is getting poorer cannot pay these bills with higher taxation nor can they find enough excess funds for the people to loan to the government. The only recourse is for the Federal Reserve to accommodate and monetize the federal debt, and that, of course, is inflation.

2003 Ron Paul 42:73
            It’s now admitted that the deficit is out of control, with next year’s deficit reaching over one-half trillion dollars, not counting the billions borrowed from  “trust funds” like Social Security. I’m sticking to my prediction that within a few years the national debt will increase over $1 trillion in one fiscal year. So far, so good, no big market reactions, the dollar is holding its own and the administration and congressional leaders are not alarmed. But they ought to be.

2003 Ron Paul 42:74
            I agree, it would be politically tough to bite the bullet and deal with our extravagance, both fiscal and monetary, but the repercussions here at home from a loss of confidence in the dollar throughout the world will not be a pretty sight to behold. I don’t see any way we are going to avoid the crisis.

2003 Ron Paul 42:75
            We do have some options to minimize the suffering. If we decided to, we could permit some alternatives to the current system of money and banking we have today.

2003 Ron Paul 42:76
            Already, we took a big step in this direction. Gold was illegal to own between 1933 and 1976. Today millions of Americans do own some gold.

2003 Ron Paul 42:77
            Gold contracts are legal, but a settlement of any dispute is always in Federal Reserve notes. This makes gold contracts of limited value.

2003 Ron Paul 42:78
            For gold to be an alternative to Federal Reserve notes, taxes on any transactions in gold must be removed, both sales and capital gains.

2003 Ron Paul 42:79
            Holding gold should be permitted in any pension fund, just as dollars are permitted in a checking account of these funds.

2003 Ron Paul 42:80
            Repeal of all legal tender laws is a must. Sound money never requires the force of legal tender laws. Only paper money requires such laws.

2003 Ron Paul 42:81
            These proposals, even if put in place tomorrow, would not solve all the problems we face. It would though, legalize freedom of choice in money, and many who worry about having their savings wiped out by a depreciating dollar would at least have another option. This option would ease some of the difficulties that are surely to come from runaway deficits in a weakening economy with skyrocketing inflation.

2003 Ron Paul 42:82
            Curbing the scope of government and limiting its size to that prescribed in the Constitution is the goal that we should seek. But political reality makes this option available to us only after a national bankruptcy has occurred. We need not face that catastrophe. What we need to do is to strictly limit the power of government to meddle in our economy and our personal affairs, and stay out of the internal affairs of other nations.


2003 Ron Paul 42:83
            It’s no coincidence that during the period following the establishment of the Federal Reserve and the elimination of the gold standard, a huge growth in the size of the federal government and its debt occurred. Believers in big government, whether on the left or right, vociferously reject the constraints on government growth that gold demands. Liberty is virtually impossible to protect when the people allow their government to print money at will. Inevitably, the left will demand more economic interventionism, the right more militarism and empire building. Both sides, either inadvertently or deliberately, will foster corporatism. Those whose greatest interest is in liberty and self-reliance are lost in the shuffle. Though left and right have different goals and serve different special-interest groups, they are only too willing to compromise and support each other’s programs.

2003 Ron Paul 42:84
            If unchecked, the economic and political chaos that comes from currency destruction inevitably leads to tyranny- a consequence of which the Founders were well aware. For 90 years we have lived with a central bank, with the last 32 years absent of any restraint on money creation. The longer the process lasts, the faster the printing presses have to run in an effort to maintain stability. They are currently running at record rate. It was predictable and is understandable that our national debt is now expanding at a record rate.

2003 Ron Paul 42:85
            The panicky effort of the Fed to stimulate economic growth does produce what it considers favorable economic reports, recently citing second quarter growth this year at 3.1%. But in the footnotes, we find that military spending—almost all of which is overseas- was up an astounding 46%. This, of course, represents deficit spending financed by the Federal Reserve’s printing press. In the same quarter, after-tax corporate profits fell 3.4%. This is hardly a reassuring report on the health of our economy and merely reflects the bankruptcy of current economic policy.

2003 Ron Paul 42:86
            Real economic growth won’t return until confidence in the entire system is restored. And that is impossible as long as it depends on the politicians not spending too much money and the Federal Reserve limiting its propensity to inflate our way to prosperity. Only sound money and limited government can do that.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 43


September 9, 2003
Statement Opposing the Continuity of Government Proposal

2003 Ron Paul 43:1
Mr. Chairman, thank you for holding this hearing and for providing me the opportunity to present comments on the important issue of how to maintain continuity of government if a majority of members of the House of Representatives are incapacitated. This issue has recently attracted attention because of the proposal of the “Continuity of Government (COG) Commission,” that the Constitution be amended to allow appointed persons to fill vacancies in the House in the event of an emergency.

2003 Ron Paul 43:2
Since the COG Commission proposal was introduced I, along with other members of Congress, journalists, academics, and policy experts have expressed concerns that having appointed members serve in Congress function is inconsistent with the House’s historic function as the branch of Congress most directly accountable to the people. A superior way to address concerns regarding continuity of House operations in the event of an emergency is contained in HR 2844, the Continuity of Representation Act, introduced by my distinguished colleague, House Judiciary Chairman James Sensenbrenner.

2003 Ron Paul 43:3
Even with the direct election of Senators, the fact that members of the House are elected every two years while Senators run for statewide office every six years, means that members of the House of Representatives are still more accountable to the people than any other part of the federal government. Appointed members of Congress simply cannot be truly representative. Turning once again to Federalist 52, we find this point eloquently made by Mssrs. Madison and Hamilton: “As it is essential to liberty that the government in general should have a common interest with the people, so it is particularly essential that the branch of it under consideration should have an immediate dependence on, and an intimate sympathy with, the people. Frequent elections are unquestionably the only policy by which this dependence and sympathy can be effectually secured.”

2003 Ron Paul 43:4
Mr. Chairman, there are those who say that the power of appointment is necessary in order to preserve checks and balances and thus prevent an abuse of executive power. Of course, I agree that it is very important to carefully guard our constitutional liberties in times of crisis, and that an over-centralization of power in the executive branch is one of the most serious dangers to that liberty. However, Mr. Chairman, during a time of crisis it is all the more important to have representatives accountable to the people making the laws. Otherwise, the citizenry has no check on the inevitable tendency of government to infringe on the people’s liberties at such a time. I would remind my colleagues that the only reason we are re-examining provisions of the PATRIOT Act is because of public concerns that this Act gives up excessive liberty for a phantom security. Appointed officials would not be as responsive to public concerns.

2003 Ron Paul 43:5
Supporters of this plan claim that the appointment power will be necessary in the event of an emergency and that the appointed representatives will only be temporary. However, the laws passed by these “temporary” representatives will be permanent.

2003 Ron Paul 43:6
Mr. Chairman, this country has faced the possibility of threats to the continuity of this body several times throughout our history, yet no one suggested removing the people’s right to vote for members of Congress. For example, the British in the War of 1812 attacked the city of Washington, yet nobody suggested the states could not address the lack of a quorum in the House of Representatives though elections. During the Civil War, the neighboring state of Virginia (where today many Capitol Hill staffers and members reside) was actively involved in hostilities against the United States government. Yet Abraham Lincoln never suggested that non-elected persons serve in the House.

2003 Ron Paul 43:7
The Constitution already provides the framework for Congress to function after a catastrophic event. Article I section 2 grants the governors of the various states authority to hold special elections to fill vacancies in the House of Representatives.  Article I section 4 gives Congress the authority to designate the time, manner, and place of such special elections if states should fail to act expeditiously following a national emergency.  As Hamilton explains in Federalist 59, the “time, place, and manner” clause was specifically designed to address the kind of extraordinary circumstances imagined by COGC.  Hamilton characterized authority over federal elections as shared between the states and Congress, with neither being able to control the process entirely. 

2003 Ron Paul 43:8
Chairman Sensenbrenner’s bill exercises Congress’ power to regulate the time, place, and manner of elections by requiring the holding of special elections within 21 days after the Speaker or acting Speaker declares a majority of House members are incapacitated. This proposal protects the people’s right to choose their representatives at the time when such a right may be most important, while ensuring continuity of the legislative branch.

2003 Ron Paul 43:9
I have no doubt that the people of the states are quite competent to hold elections in a timely fashion. After all, it is in each state’s interest to ensure it has adequate elected representation in Washington as soon as possible. The re-call election in California shows it is possible to have a gubernatorial election, in the most populous state in the union no less, in less than three months time. Surely it is possible to hold an election in a congressional district in under that amount of time.

2003 Ron Paul 43:10
In conclusion, I once again thank the Chairman of this Committee for allowing me to express my views before the House. I also once again urge my colleagues to reject any proposal that takes away the people’s right to elect their representatives and instead support HR 2844, the Continuity of Congress Act, which ensures an elected Congress can continue to operate in the event of an emergency. This is what the drafters of the Constitution intended.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 44


September 10, 2003
Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Subsidies Distort the Housing Market

2003 Ron Paul 44:1
Mr. Chairman, thank you for holding this hearing on the Treasury Department’s views regarding government sponsored enterprises (GSEs). I would also like to thank Secretaries Snow and Martinez for taking time out of their busy schedules to appear before the committee.

2003 Ron Paul 44:2
I hope this committee spends some time examining the special privileges provided to GSEs by the federal government. According to the Congressional Budget Office, the housing-related GSEs received 13.6 billion worth of indirect federal subsidies in fiscal year 2000 alone. Today, I will introduce the Free Housing Market Enhancement Act, which removes government subsidies from the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae), the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac), and the National Home Loan Bank Board.

2003 Ron Paul 44:3
One of the major government privileges granted to GSEs is a line of credit with the United States Treasury. According to some estimates, the line of credit may be worth over $2 billion dollars. This explicit promise by the Treasury to bail out GSEs in times of economic difficulty helps the GSEs attract investors who are willing to settle for lower yields than they would demand in the absence of the subsidy. Thus, the line of credit distorts the allocation of capital. More importantly, the line of credit is a promise on behalf of the government to engage in a huge unconstitutional and immoral income transfer from working Americans to holders of GSE debt.

2003 Ron Paul 44:4
The Free Housing Market Enhancement Act also repeals the explicit grant of legal authority given to the Federal Reserve to purchase GSE debt.  GSEs are the only institutions besides the United States Treasury granted explicit statutory authority to monetize their debt through the Federal Reserve. This provision gives the GSEs a source of liquidity unavailable to their competitors.

2003 Ron Paul 44:5
The connection between the GSEs and the government helps isolate the GSE management from market discipline. This isolation from market discipline is the root cause of the recent reports of mismanagement occurring at Fannie and Freddie. After all, if Fannie and Freddie were not underwritten by the federal government, investors would demand Fannie and Freddie provide assurance that they follow accepted management and accounting practices.

2003 Ron Paul 44:6
Ironically, by transferring the risk of a widespread mortgage default, the government increases the likelihood of a painful crash in the housing market. This is because the special privileges granted to Fannie and Freddie have distorted the housing market by allowing them to attract capital they could not attract under pure market conditions. As a result, capital is diverted from its most productive use into housing. This reduces the efficacy of the entire market and thus reduces the standard of living of all Americans.

2003 Ron Paul 44:7
Despite the long-term damage to the economy inflicted by the government’s interference in the housing market, the government’s policy of diverting capital to other uses creates a short-term boom in housing.   Like all artificially-created bubbles, the boom in housing prices cannot last forever. When housing prices fall, homeowners will experience difficulty as their equity is wiped out. Furthermore, the holders of the mortgage debt will also have a loss. These losses will be greater than they would have otherwise been had government policy not actively encouraged over-investment in housing.

2003 Ron Paul 44:8
Perhaps the Federal Reserve can stave off the day of reckoning by purchasing GSE debt and pumping liquidity into the housing market, but this cannot hold off the inevitable drop in the housing market forever. In fact, postponing the necessary, but painful market corrections will only deepen the inevitable fall. The more people invested in the market, the greater the effects across the economy when the bubble bursts.

2003 Ron Paul 44:9
No less an authority than Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan has expressed concern that government subsidies provided to GSEs make investors underestimate the risk of investing in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

2003 Ron Paul 44:10
Mr. Chairman, I would like to once again thank the Financial Services Committee for holding this hearing. I would also like to thank Secretaries Snow and Martinez for their presence here today. I hope today’s hearing sheds light on how special privileges granted to GSEs distort the housing market and endanger American taxpayers. Congress should act to remove taxpayer support from the housing GSEs before the bubble bursts and taxpayers are once again forced to bail out investors who were misled by foolish government interference in the market. I therefore hope this committee will soon stand up for American taxpayers and investors by acting on my Free Housing Market Enhancement Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 45


September 16, 2003
We Cannot Afford Another $87 Billion in Iraq

2003 Ron Paul 45:1
Mr. Speaker, the neo-conservative media machine has been hard at work lately drumming up support for the $87 billion appropriation to extend our precarious occupation of Iraq. Opposition to this funding, according to the Secretary of Defense, encourages our enemies and hinders the war against terrorism. This is a distortion of the facts and is nothing more than attacking the messenger when one disapproves of the message.

2003 Ron Paul 45:2
Those within the administration, prior to the war, who warned of the dangers and real costs were fired. Yet now it turns out that they were correct, that it would not be a cakewalk, that it would require a lot more troops, and costs would far exceed original expectations.

2003 Ron Paul 45:3
The President recently reminded us that we went into Iraq to force its compliance with U.N. resolutions, since the U.N. itself was not up to the task. It was not for national security reasons. Yet we all know that the U.N. never endorsed this occupation.

2003 Ron Paul 45:4
The question we in the Congress ought to ask is this: What if our efforts to westernize and democratize Iraq do not work? Who knows? Many believe that our pursuit of nation building in Iraq will actually make things worse in Iraq, in the entire Middle East, throughout the entire Muslim world, and even here in the United States.

2003 Ron Paul 45:5
This is a risky venture, and new funding represents an escalation of our efforts to defend a policy that has little chance of working.

2003 Ron Paul 45:6
Since no weapons of mass destruction were found in Iraq, nor any evidence that the army of Saddam Hussein could have threatened the security of any nation, let alone the United States, a new reason is now given to justify an endless entanglement in a remote area of the world 6,000 miles from our homeland.

2003 Ron Paul 45:7
We are now told that we must occupy Iraq to fight the terrorists that attacked us on 9/11. Yet not one shred of evidence has been produced to show that the Iraqi government had anything to do with 9/11 or any affiliation with al-Qaeda.

2003 Ron Paul 45:8
The American people are first told they have to sacrifice to pay for the bombing of Iraq. Now they must accept the fact that they must pay to rebuild it. If they complain, they will be accused of being unpatriotic and not supporting the troops. I wonder what a secret poll of our troops would reveal about whether they thought public support for bringing them home next week indicated a lack of support for their well-being.

2003 Ron Paul 45:9
Some believe that by not raising taxes to pay for the war we can fund it on the cheap. We cannot.  When deficits skyrocket the federal government prints more money, the people are effectively taxed by losing value in their savings and in their paychecks. The inflation tax is a sinister and evil way to pay for unpopular wars. It has been done that way for centuries.

2003 Ron Paul 45:10
Mr. Speaker, I guess we shouldn’t worry because we can find a way to pay for it. Already we are charging our wounded soldiers $8.10 a day for food when recuperating in a hospital from their war injuries.  We also know that other soldiers are helping out by buying their own night vision goggles, GPS devices, short wave radios, backpacks, and even shoes!  So I suppose we can fund the war that way.  It does not seem like much of a bother to cut veterans’ benefits. Besides, many conservatives for years have argued that deficits do not really matter, only tax rates do. So let us just quit worrying about deficits and this $87 billion supplemental.  Of course I’m being sarcastic.

2003 Ron Paul 45:11
Seriously, though, funding for this misadventure should be denied no matter how well-meaning its supporters are. To expect a better world to come from force of arms abroad and confiscatory taxation at home is nothing but a grand illusion. The sooner we face the reality, the better.

2003 Ron Paul 45:12
While we nation-build in Iraq in the name of defeating terrorism, we ignore our responsibilities to protect our borders at home while we compromise the liberties of our citizens with legislation like the Patriot Act.

2003 Ron Paul 45:13
There are two main reasons we need to reject the foreign policy of the past 50 years that has been used to rationalize our presence in Iraq. First, the practical: We cannot expect to force western, U.S.-style democracy on a nation that for over 1,000 years learned to live with and accept an Islamic-based legal system.  No matter what we say or believe, to the Iraqis they have been invaded by the Christian west, and whether it is the United States, U.N. or European troops that are sent to teach them the ways of the west it will not matter.

2003 Ron Paul 45:14
Second, we have no constitutional authority to police the world or involve ourselves in nation building, in making the world safe for our style of democracy. Our founders advised against it and the early presidents followed that advice. If we believe strongly in our ideals, the best way to spread them is to set a good example so that others will voluntarily emulate us. Force will not work. Besides, we do not have the money. The $87 billion appropriations request should be rejected.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 46


September 18, 2003
Reject UN Gun Control!

2003 Ron Paul 46:1
Mr. Speaker, I rise to introduce the “Right to Keep and Bear Arms Act.” This legislation prohibits US taxpayer dollars from being used to support or promote any United Nations actions that could infringe on the Second Amendment. The Right to Keep and Bear Arms Act also expresses the sense of Congress that proposals to tax, or otherwise limit, the right to keep and bear arms are “reprehensible and deserving of condemnation.”

2003 Ron Paul 46:2
Over the past decade, the UN has waged a campaign to undermine gun rights protected by the Second Amendment of the US Constitution. UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan has called on members of the Security Council to “tackle” the proliferation and “easy availability” of small arms and light weapons. Just this June, the UN tried to “tackle” gun rights by sponsoring a “Week of Action Against Small Arms.” Of course, by small arms, the UN really means all privately owned firearms.

2003 Ron Paul 46:3
Secretary Annan is not the only globalist calling for international controls on firearms. For example, some world leaders, including French President Jacques Chirac, have called for a global tax on firearms. Meanwhile, the UN Security Council’s “Report of the Group of Governmental Experts on Small Arms” calls for a comprehensive program of worldwide gun control and praises the restrictive gun polices of Red China and France!

2003 Ron Paul 46:4
Contrary to the UN propaganda, the right to keep and bear arms is a fundamental right  and, according to the drafters of the Constitution, the guardian of every other right . Scholar John Lott has shown that respecting the right to keep and bear arms is one of the best ways governments can reduce crime. Conversely, cities where the government imposes gun control have higher crime rates. Far from making people safer, gun control endangers innocent people by increasing the odds that they will be victimized!

2003 Ron Paul 46:5
Gun control also increases the odds that people will lose their lives and liberties to power-hungry government officials. Tyrannical governments throughout the world kill approximately 2,000,000 people annually. Many of these victims of tyranny were first disarmed by their governments. If the UN is successful in implementing a global regime of gun control, more innocent lives will be lost to public (and private) criminals. 

2003 Ron Paul 46:6
I would remind my colleagues that policies prohibiting the private ownership of firearms were strongly supported by tyrants such as Adolph Hitler, Joseph Stalin, and Mao Tse-Tung.

2003 Ron Paul 46:7
Mr. Speaker, global gun control is a recipe for global tyranny and a threat to the safety of all law-abiding persons. I therefore hope all my colleagues will help protect the fundamental human right to keep and bear arms by cosponsoring the Right to Keep and Bear Arms Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 47


September 30, 2003
Are Vouchers the Solution for Our Failing Public Schools?

2003 Ron Paul 47:1
Mr. Speaker, many of those who share my belief that the most effective education reform is to put parents back in charge of the education system have embraced government-funded voucher programs as a means to that end. I certainly sympathize with the goals of voucher proponents and I believe that States and local governments have the right, protected by the Tenth Amendment, to adopt any sort of voucher program they believe meets the needs of their communities. However, I have a number of concerns regarding proposals to implement a voucher plan on the Federal level.

2003 Ron Paul 47:2
The basic reason supporters of parental control of education should view Federal voucher programs with a high degree of skepticism is that vouchers are a creation of the government, not the market. Vouchers are a taxpayer-funded program benefiting a particular group of children selected by politicians and bureaucrats. Therefore, the Federal voucher program supported by many conservatives is little more than another tax-funded welfare program establishing an entitlement to a private school education. Vouchers thus raise the same constitutional and moral questions as other transfer programs. Yet, voucher supporters wonder why middle-class taxpayers, who have to sacrifice to provide a private school education to their children, balk at being forced to pay more taxes to provide a free private education for another child.

2003 Ron Paul 47:3
It may be argued that vouchers are at least a more efficient welfare program than continuing to throw taxpayer money at public schools. However, the likely effect of a voucher program is to increase spending on new programs for private schools while continuing to increase spending on programs for public schools. For example, Mr. Speaker, during the debate on the DC voucher program, voucher proponents vehemently denied that any public schools would lose any Federal funding. Some even promised to support increased Federal spending on DC’s public and charter schools. Instead of reducing funding for failed programs, Congress simply added another 10 million dollars (from taxes or debt) to the bill to pay for the vouchers without making any offsetting cuts. In a true free market, failing competitors are not guaranteed a continued revenue stream.

2003 Ron Paul 47:4
Many supporters of vouchers couch their support in rhetoric about a child’s right to a quality education and the need for equal educational opportunities for all. However, accepting the premise that people have a “right” to a good of a certain quality logically means accepting government’s role in establishing standards to ensure that providers are giving their consumers a “quality” product. Thus, in order to ensure that vouchers are being used to fulfilling students’ “right” to a “quality” education (as defined by the government) private schools will be forced to comply with the same rules and regulations as the public schools.

2003 Ron Paul 47:5
Even some supporters of vouchers recognize the threat that vouchers may lead to increased Federal regulation of private schools. These voucher supporters often point to the fact that, with vouchers, parents will choose which schools receive public funding to assuage the concerns of their critics. However, even if a voucher program is free of State controls at its inception, it will not remain so for long. Inevitably, some parents will choose a school whose curriculum is objectionable to many taxpayers; say an academy run by believers in the philosophy of the Nation of Islam. This will lead to calls to control the schools for which a voucher can be used. More likely, parents will be given a list of approved schools where they can use their voucher at the inception of the program. Government bureaucrats will have compiled the list to “help” parents choose a quality school for their children.

2003 Ron Paul 47:6
The fears of these voucher critics was confirmed on the floor of the House of Representatives when the lead sponsor of the DC voucher amendment admitted that under his plan the Department of Education would have to begin accrediting religious schools to ensure that only qualified schools participate in the voucher program because religious schools currently do not need to receive government accreditation. Government accreditation is the first step toward government control.

2003 Ron Paul 47:7
Several private, Christian schools in my district have expressed concerns that vouchers would lead to increased government control of private education. This concern is not just limited to Christian conservatives; the head of the Jewish Anti-Defamation league opposed the recent DC voucher bill because he feared it would lead to “...an unacceptable effort by the government to monitor and control religious activities.”

2003 Ron Paul 47:8
Voucher supporters will fall back on the argument that no school is forced to accept vouchers. However, those schools that accept vouchers will have a competitive advantage over those that do not because they will be perceived as being superior since they have the “government’s seal of approval.” Thus, those private schools that retain their independence will likely be forced out of business by schools that go on the government dole.

2003 Ron Paul 47:9
We have already seen how a Federal education program resembling a voucher program can lead to Federal control of education. Currently, Federal aid to college students is dispersed in the form of loans or grants to individual students who then transfer these funds to the college of their choice. However the government has used its support of student loans to impose a wide variety of policies dealing with everything from the makeup of student bodies to campus safety policies. There are even proposals for Federal regulation of the composition of college faculties and course content! I would remind my colleagues that only two colleges refuse to accept Federal funds (and thus Federal control) today. It would not be a victory for either liberty or quality education if the experience of higher education was replicated in private K-12 education. Yet, that is the likely result if the supporters of vouchers have their way.

2003 Ron Paul 47:10
Some supporters of centralized education have recognized how vouchers can help them advance their statist agenda. For example, Sibhon Gorman, writing in the September 2003 issue of the Washington Monthly, suggests that, “The way to insure that vouchers really work, then is to make them agents of accountability for the private schools that accept them. And the way to do that is to marry the voucher concept with the testing regime mandated by Bush’s No Child Left Behind Act. Allow children to go to the private school of their choosing, but only so long as that school participates in the same testing requirements mandates for public schools.” In other words, parents can choose any school they want as long as the school teaches the government approved curriculum so the students can pass the government approved test.

2003 Ron Paul 47:11
Instead of expanding the Federal control over education in the name of parental control, Congress should embrace a true agenda of parental control by passing generous education tax credits. Education tax credits empower parents to spend their own money on their children’s education. Since the parents control the education dollar, the parents control their children’s education. In order to provide parents with control of education, I have introduced the Family Education Freedom Act (H.R. 612) that provides all parents with a tax credit of up to $3,000. The credit is available to parents who choose to send their children to public, private, or home school. Education tax credits are particularly valuable to lower income parents.

2003 Ron Paul 47:12
The Family Education Freedom Act restores true accountability to education by putting parents in control of the education dollar. If a child is not being educated to the parents’ satisfaction, the parent will withdraw that student from the school and spend their education dollars someplace else.

2003 Ron Paul 47:13
I have also introduced the Education Improvement Tax Cut Act (H.R. 611) that provides a tax credit of up to $3,000 for in-kind or cash donation to public, private, or home schools. The Education Improvement Tax Cut Act relies on the greatest charitable force in history to improve the education of children from low-income families: the generosity of the American people. As with parental tax credits, the Education Improvement Tax Cut Act brings true accountability to education since taxpayers will only donate to schools that provide a quality education.

2003 Ron Paul 47:14
Mr. Speaker, proponents of vouchers promise these programs advance true market principles and thus improve education. However, there is a real danger that Federal voucher programs will expand the welfare state and impose government “standards” on private schools, turning them into “privatized” versions of public schools. A superior way of improving education is to return control of the education dollar directly to the American people through tax cuts and tax credits. I therefore hope all supporters of parental control of education will support my Family Education Freedom Act and Education Improvement Tax Cut Act.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 48


October 16, 2003
Statement Opposing Trade Sanctions against Syria

2003 Ron Paul 48:1
Mr. Speaker, I would like to express my strong opposition to this ill-conceived and ill-timed legislation. This bill will impose what is effectively a trade embargo against Syria and will force the severance of diplomatic and business ties between the United States and Syria. It will also significantly impede travel between the United States and Syria. Worse yet, the bill also provides essentially an open-ended authorization for the president to send US taxpayer money to Syria should that country do what we are demanding in this bill.

2003 Ron Paul 48:2
This bill cites Syria’s alleged support for Hamas, Hizballah, Palestine Islamic Jihad, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and other terrorist groups as evidence that Syria is posing a threat to the United States. Not since the Hizballah bombing of a US Marine barracks in Lebanon in 1983 have any of these organizations attacked the United States. After that attack on our Marines, who were sent to Beirut to intervene in a conflict that had nothing to do with the United States, President Ronald Reagan wisely ordered their withdrawal from that volatile area. Despite what the interventionists constantly warn, the world did not come to an end back in 1983 when the president decided to withdraw from Beirut and leave the problems there to be worked out by those countries most closely involved.

2003 Ron Paul 48:3
What troubles me greatly about this bill is that although the named, admittedly bad, terrorist organizations do not target the United States at present, we are basically declaring our intention to pick a fight with them. We are declaring that we will take pre-emptive actions against organizations that apparently have no quarrel with us. Is this wise, particularly considering their capacity to carry out violent acts against those with whom they are in conflict? Is this not inviting trouble by stirring up a hornet’s nest? Is there anything to be gained in this?

2003 Ron Paul 48:4
This bill imposes an embargo on Syria for, among other reasons, the Syrian government’s inability to halt fighters crossing the Syrian border into Iraq. While I agree that any foreign fighters coming into Iraq to attack American troops is totally unacceptable, I wonder just how much control Syria has over its borders — particularly over the chaotic border with Iraq. If Syria has no control over its borders, is it valid to impose sanctions on the country for its inability to halt clandestine border crossings? I find it a bit ironic to be imposing a trade embargo on Syria for failing to control its borders when we do not have control of our own borders. Scores cross illegally into the United States each year – potentially including those who cross over with the intent to do us harm – yet very little is done to secure our own borders. Perhaps this is because our resources are too engaged guarding the borders of countless countries overseas. But there is no consistency in our policy. Look at the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan: while we continue to maintain friendly relations and deliver generous foreign aid to Pakistan, it is clear that Pakistan does not control its border with Afghanistan. In all likelihood, Osama bin Laden himself has crossed over the Afghan border into Pakistan. No one proposes an embargo on Pakistan. On the contrary: the supplemental budget request we are taking up this week includes another $200 million in loan guarantees to Pakistan.

2003 Ron Paul 48:5
I am also concerned about the timing of this bill. As we continue to pursue Al-Qaeda - most of which escaped and continue to operate - it seems to me we need all the help we can get in tracking these criminals down and holding them to account for the attack on the United States. As the AP reported recently:

2003 Ron Paul 48:6
“So, too, are Syria’s claims, supported by US intelligence, that Damascus has provided the United States with valuable assistance in countering terror.  

2003 Ron Paul 48:7
“The Syrians have in custody Mohammed Haydar Zammer, believed to have recruited some of the Sept. 11 hijackers, and several high-level Iraqis who were connected to the Saddam Hussein government have turned up in US custody.”

2003 Ron Paul 48:8
Numerous other press reports detail important assistance Syria has given the US after 9/11. If Syria is providing assistance to the US in tracking these people down - any assistance - passing this bill can only be considered an extremely counterproductive development. Does anyone here care to guess how much assistance Syria will be providing us once this bill is passed? Can we afford to turn our back on Syria’s assistance, even if it is not as complete as it could be?

2003 Ron Paul 48:9
That is the problem with this approach. Imposing sanctions and cutting off relations with a country is ineffective and counterproductive. It is only one-half step short of war and very often leads to war. This bill may well even completely eliminate any trade between the two countries. It will almost completely shut the door on diplomatic relations. It sends a strong message to Syria and the Syrian people: that we no longer wish to engage you. This cannot be in our best interest.

2003 Ron Paul 48:10
This bill may even go further than that. In a disturbing bit of déjà vu, the bill makes references to “Syria’s acquisition of weapons of mass destruction (WMD)” and threatens to “impede” Syrian weapons ambitions. This was the justification for our intervention in Iraq, yet after more than a thousand inspectors have spent months and some 300 million dollars none have been found. Will this bill’s unproven claims that Syria has WMD be later used to demand military action against that country?

2003 Ron Paul 48:11
Mr. Speaker: history is replete with examples of the futility of sanctions and embargoes and travel bans. More than 40 years of embargo against Cuba have not produced the desired change there. Sadly, embargoes and sanctions most often hurt those least responsible. A trade embargo against Syria will hurt American businesses and will cost American jobs. It will make life more difficult for the average Syrian - with whom we have no quarrel. Making life painful for the population is not the best way to win over hearts and minds. I strongly urge my colleagues to reject this counterproductive bill.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 49


October 17, 2003
Borrowing Billions to Fund a Failed Policy in Iraq

2003 Ron Paul 49:1
Mr. Speaker: I rise in opposition to this request for nearly $87 billion to continue the occupation and rebuilding of Iraq and Afghanistan. This is money we do not have being shipped away on a foreign welfare program. The burden on our already weakened economy could well be crippling.

2003 Ron Paul 49:2
Those who argue that we must vote for this appropriation because “we must succeed” in Iraq are misguided. Those who say this have yet to define what it means – in concrete terms – to have “success” in Iraq. What is success in Iraq? How will we achieve success in Iraq? How will we know when we have succeeded in Iraq? About how long will “success” take to achieve and about how much will it cost? These are reasonable questions to have when we are asked to spend billions of taxpayers’ dollars, but thus far we have heard little more than nice-sounding platitudes.

2003 Ron Paul 49:3
We have established a troubling precedent that no matter how ill-conceived an intervention, we must continue to become more deeply involved because “we must succeed.” That is one reason we see unrelated funding in this supplemental for places like Liberia and Sudan.

2003 Ron Paul 49:4
Mr. Speaker this reconstruction of Iraq – that we are making but a down-payment on today – is at its core just another foreign policy boondoggle. The $20 billion plan to “rebuild” Iraq tilts heavily toward creating a statist economy and is filled with very liberal social-engineering programs. Much of the money in this reconstruction plan will be wasted - as foreign aid most often is. Much will be wasted as corporate welfare to politically connected corporations; much will be thrown away at all the various “non-government organizations” that aim to teach the Iraqis everything from the latest American political correctness to the “right” way to vote. The bill includes $900 million to import petroleum products into Iraq (a country with the second largest oil reserves in the world); $793 million for healthcare in Iraq when we’re in the midst of our own crisis and about to raise Medicare premiums of our seniors; $10 million for “women’s leadership programs” (more social engineering); $200 million in loan guarantees to Pakistan (a military dictatorship that likely is the home of Osama bin Laden); $245 million for the “U.S. share” of U.N. peacekeeping in Liberia and Sudan; $95 million for education in Afghanistan; $600 million for repair and modernization of roads and bridges in Iraq (while our own infrastructure crumbles).

2003 Ron Paul 49:5
There has been some discontent among conservatives about the $20 billion reconstruction price tag. They fail to realize that this is just the other side of the coin of military interventionism. It is the same coin, which is why I have consistently opposed foreign interventionism. There is a lesson here that those who call themselves fiscal conservatives seem to not have learned. There is no separation between the military intervention and the post-military intervention, otherwise known as “nation-building.” Fiscal conservatives are uneasy about nation building and foreign aid. The president himself swore off nation building as a candidate. But anyone concerned about sending American tax dollars to foreign countries must look directly at military interventionism abroad. If there is one thing the history of our interventionism teaches, it is that the best way for a foreign country to become a financial dependent of the United States is to first be attacked by the United States.

2003 Ron Paul 49:6
This request - which was not the first and will not be the last - demonstrates in the most concrete terms that there is a real and concrete cost of our policy of interventionism. The American taxpayer paid to bomb Baghdad and now will pay to rebuild Iraq – its schools, hospitals, prisons, roads, and more. Many Americans cannot afford to send their own children to college, but with the money in this bill they will be sending Iraqi kids to college. Is this really what the American people want?

2003 Ron Paul 49:7
The real point is that the billions we are told we must spend to rebuild Iraq is indeed the natural outcome of our policy of pre-emptive military intervention. All those who voted for the resolution authorizing the president to attack Iraq have really already voted for this supplemental. There is no military intervention without a “Marshall Plan” afterward, regardless of our ability to pay. And the American people will be expected to pay for far more. This current request is only perhaps step four in what will likely be a 10 or more step program to remake Iraq and the rest of the Middle East in the image of Washington, D.C. social engineers and “global planners.” What will be steps five, six, seven, eight? Long-term occupation, micro-managing Iraq’s economy, organizing and managing elections, writing an Iraqi constitution. And so on. When will it end?

2003 Ron Paul 49:8
There is also much said about how we must support this supplemental because to do otherwise would mean not supporting the troops. I resent this dishonest accusation. It is nothing but a red herring. I wonder if an American currently serving an open-ended occupation in Iraq would think that bringing him home next week would be a good show of support for our troops. Maintaining an increasingly deadly occupation of Iraq and bankrupting many of our reservists and National Guard troops by unilaterally extending their contracts to serve in an active deployment is hardly “supporting the troops.” Perhaps that is why a Stars and Stripes newspaper survey of the troops in Iraq this week found that a majority had very low morale. And according to the same Stars and Stripes survey, an increasing number are not planning to re-enlist.

2003 Ron Paul 49:9
Conservatives often proclaim that they are opposed to providing American welfare to the rest of the world. I agree. The only way to do that, however, is to stop supporting a policy of military interventionism. You cannot have one without the other. If a military intervention against Syria and Iran are next, it will be the same thing: we will pay to bomb the country and we will pay even more to rebuild it - and as we see with the plan for Iraq, this rebuilding will not be done on the cheap. The key fallacy in the argument of the militarists is that there is some way to fight a war without associated costs - the costs of occupation, reconstruction, “institution-building,” “democracy programs.”

2003 Ron Paul 49:10
I opposed our action against Iraq for two main reasons. I sincerely believed that our national security was not threatened and I did not believe that Saddam Hussein’s regime was involved in the attack on the United States on 9/11. I believe what we have learned since the intervention has supported my view. Meanwhile, while our troops are trying to police the border between Syria and Iraq our own borders remain as porous as ever. Terrorists who entered our country could easily do so again through our largely un-patrolled borders. While we expend American blood and treasure occupying a country that was not involved in the attack on the US, those who were responsible for the attack most likely are hiding out in Pakistan - a military dictatorship we are now allied with and to which this supplemental sends some $200 million in loan guarantees.

2003 Ron Paul 49:11
Our continued occupation of Iraq is not producing the promised results, despite efforts to paint a brighter picture of the current situation. What once was a secular dictatorship appears to be moving toward being a fundamentalist Islamic regime – not the democracy we were promised. As repulsive as Saddam’s regime was, the prospect of an Iraq run by Islamic clerics, aligned with Iranian radicals and hostile to the United States, is no more palatable. There are signs that this is the trend. The press reports regularly on attacks against Iraq’s one million Christians. Those hand-picked by the United States to run Iraq have found themselves targets for assassination. Clerics are forming their own militias. The thousands of non-combatants killed in the US intervention are seeking revenge against the unwanted American occupiers.

2003 Ron Paul 49:12
Mr. Speaker, throwing billions of dollars after a failed policy will not produce favorable results. We are heading full-speed toward bankruptcy, yet we continue to spend like there is no tomorrow. There will be a tomorrow, however. The money we are spending today is real. The bill will be paid, whether through raising taxes or printing more money. Either way, the American people will become poorer in pursuit of a policy that cannot and will not work. We cannot re-make the world in our own image. The stated aim was to remove Saddam Hussein. That mission is accomplished. The best policy now for Iraq is to declare victory and bring our troops home. We should let the people of Iraq rebuild their own country. I urge my colleagues to vote against this supplemental request.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 50


November 21, 2003
Conscription – The Terrible Price of War

2003 Ron Paul 50:1
The ultimate cost of war is almost always the loss of liberty.  True defensive wars and revolutionary wars against tyrants may preserve or establish a free society, as did our war against the British.  But these wars are rare.  Most wars are unnecessary, dangerous, and cause senseless suffering with little being gained.  The result of most conflicts throughout the ages has been loss of liberty and life on both sides.  The current war in which we find ourselves clearly qualifies as one of those unnecessary and dangerous wars.  To get the people to support ill-conceived wars, the nation’s leaders employ grand schemes of deception.

2003 Ron Paul 50:2
Woodrow Wilson orchestrated our entry into World War I by first promising during the election of 1916 to keep us out of the European conflict, then a few months later pressuring and maneuvering Congress into declaring war against Germany.  Whether it was the Spanish American War before that or all the wars since, U.S. presidents have deceived the people to gain popular support for ill-conceived military ventures.  Wilson wanted the war and immediately demanded conscription to fight it.   He didn’t have the guts even to name the program a military draft; instead in a speech before Congress calling for war he advised the army should be “chosen upon the principle of universal liability to service.”   Most Americans at the time of the declaration didn’t believe actual combat troops would be sent.  What a dramatic change from this early perception, when the people endorsed the war, to the carnage that followed – and the later disillusionment with Wilson and his grand scheme for world government under the League of Nations.   The American people rejected this gross new entanglement, a reflection of a somewhat healthier age than the one we find ourselves in today.

2003 Ron Paul 50:3
But when it comes to war, the principle of deception lives on. The plan for “universal liability to serve” once again is raising its ugly head.   The dollar cost of the current war is already staggering, yet plans are being made to drastically expand the human cost by forcing conscription on the young men (and maybe women) who have no ax to grind with the Iraqi people and want no part of this fight.

2003 Ron Paul 50:4
Hundreds of Americans have already been killed, and thousands more wounded and crippled, while thousands of others will experience new and deadly war related illnesses not yet identified.

2003 Ron Paul 50:5
We were told we had to support this pre-emptive war against Iraq because Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction (and to confront al Qaeda).   It was said our national security depended on it.  But all these dangers were found not to exist in Iraq.   It was implied that lack of support for this Iraqi invasion was un-American and unpatriotic.

2003 Ron Paul 50:6
Since the original reasons for the war never existed, it is now claimed that we’re there to make Iraq a western-style democracy and to spread western values.  And besides, it’s argued, it’s nice that Saddam Hussein has been removed from power.   But does the mere existence of evil somewhere in the world justify preemptive war at the expense of the American people?  Utopian dreams, fulfilled by autocratic means, hardly qualify as being morally justifiable.

2003 Ron Paul 50:7
These after-the-fact excuses for invasion and occupation of a sovereign nation direct attention away from the charge that the military industrial complex encouraged this war. It was encouraged by war profiteering, a desire to control natural resources (oil), and a Neo-con agenda of American hegemony with the goal of redrawing the borders of the countries of the Middle East.

2003 Ron Paul 50:8
The inevitable failure of such a seriously flawed foreign policy cannot be contemplated by those who have put so much energy into this occupation.   The current quagmire prompts calls from many for escalation, with more troops being sent to Iraq.  Many of our reservists and National Guardsmen cannot wait to get out and have no plans to re-enlist.  The odds are that our policy of foreign intervention, which has been with us for many decades, is not likely to soon change.  The dilemma of how to win an un-winnable war is the issue begging for an answer.

2003 Ron Paul 50:9
To get more troops, the draft will likely be reinstated.  The implicit prohibition of “involuntary servitude” under the 13th Amendment to the Constitution has already been ignored many times so few will challenge the constitutionality of the coming draft.

2003 Ron Paul 50:10
Unpopular wars invite conscription.  Volunteers disappear, as well they should.  A truly defensive just war prompts popular support.  A conscripted, unhappy soldier is better off on the long run than the slaves of old since the “enslavement” is only temporary.  But in the short run the draft may well turn out to be more deadly and degrading, as one is forced to commit life and limb to a less than worthy cause – like teaching democracy to unwilling and angry Arabs.   Slaves were safer in that their owners had an economic interest in protecting their lives.  Endangering the lives of our soldiers is acceptable policy, and that’s why they are needed.  Too often, though, our men and women who are exposed to the hostilities of war and welcomed initially are easily forgotten after the fighting ends.  Soon afterward, the injured and the sick are ignored and forgotten.

2003 Ron Paul 50:11
It is said we go about the world waging war to promote peace, and yet the price paid is rarely weighed against the failed efforts to make the world a better place.  Justifying conscription to promote the cause of liberty is one of the most bizarre notions ever conceived by man!  Forced servitude, with the risk of death and serious injury as a price to live free, makes no sense.  What right does anyone have to sacrifice the lives of others for some cause of questionable value?  Even if well motivated it can’t justify using force on uninterested persons.  

2003 Ron Paul 50:12
It’s said that the 18 year old owes it to his country.  Hogwash!  It just as easily could be argued that a 50 year-old chicken-hawk, who promotes war and places the danger on innocent young people, owes a heck of a lot more to the country than the 18 year-old being denied his liberty for a cause that has no justification.

2003 Ron Paul 50:13
All drafts are unfair.  All 18 and 19 year olds are never drafted.  By its very nature a draft must be discriminatory.  All drafts hit the most vulnerable young people, as the elites learn quickly how to avoid the risks of combat.

2003 Ron Paul 50:14
The dollar cost of war and the economic hardship is great in all wars and cannot be minimized.  War is never economically beneficial except for those in position to profit from war expenditures.  The great tragedy of war is the careless disregard for civil liberties of our own people.   Abuses of German and Japanese Americans in World War I and World War II are well known.

2003 Ron Paul 50:15
But the real sacrifice comes with conscription – forcing a small number of youngvulnerable citizens to fight the wars that older men and women, who seek glory in military victory without themselves being exposed to danger, promote.   These are wars with neither purpose nor moral justification, and too often not even declared by the Congress.

2003 Ron Paul 50:16
Without conscription, unpopular wars are much more difficult to fight.   Once the draft was undermined in the 1960s and early 1970s, the Vietnam War came to an end.  But most importantly, liberty cannot be preserved by tyranny.  A free society must always resort to volunteers.  Tyrants thinks nothing of forcing men to fight and serve in wrongheaded wars; a true fight for survival and defense of America would elicit, I’m sure, the assistance of every able-bodied man and woman.  This is not the case for wars of mischief far away from home in which we so often have found ourselves in the past century.

2003 Ron Paul 50:17
One of the worst votes that an elected official could ever cast would be to institute a military draft to fight an illegal war, if that individual himself maneuvered to avoid military service.  But avoiding the draft on principle qualifies oneself to work hard to avoid all unnecessary war and oppose the draft for all others.

2003 Ron Paul 50:18
A government that is willing to enslave a portion of its people to fight an unjust war can never be trusted to protect the liberties of its own citizens.  The ends can never justify the means, no matter what the Neo-cons say.

2003 Ron Paul Chapter 51


December 8, 2003
Whose Peace?

2003 Ron Paul 51:1
Much has been written lately about several attempts to craft an alternative peace plan in the decades-old Israeli-Palestinian dispute. The best known of these recent plans - the “Geneva Initiative” -was conceived and written by representatives of both sides of the conflict, but without the involvement of governments or politicians. As such, it is a fresh approach that should provide a lesson to those who continue to believe that peace is something that can only be crafted by government officials, or bribed and bullied by the “international community”.

2003 Ron Paul 51:2
We do know this: after decades of conflict and tens of billions of US taxpayer dollars spent, US government involvement in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process has led nowhere. The latest US government-initiated plan for peace, the “road map,” appears to be a map to nowhere. This does not surprise me much. With a seemingly endless amount of money to bribe the leaders of the two opposing sides to remain engaged in the process, is it any wonder why the two parties never arrive at peace?

2003 Ron Paul 51:3
But people on both sides are becoming more and more frustrated with the endless impasse and endless government and bureaucrat-written peace agreements that go nowhere.

2003 Ron Paul 51:4
That is why plans like this should be of such interest. Initially conceived by an obscure Swiss professor, the project was joined by former Israeli Justice Minister Yossi Beilin, former Palestinian Authority Information Minister Yasser Abed Rabbo, and by other prominent individuals like former president Jimmy Carter. The negotiations led to the creation of a 50 page detailed accord.

2003 Ron Paul 51:5
I do not know whether the product is perfect. I have not studied the minute details of the proposal. But what I do know is that politicians, governments, and special interests promote war at the expense of those who have to fight them. Wars end when the victims finally demand peace. And that is what we are beginning to see. According to one recent survey, a majority among both the Israeli and Palestinian population support this new initiative. That is encouraging.

2003 Ron Paul 51:6
To his credit, President Bush has demonstrated an open mind toward this alternative approach. He declared the Geneva Initiative “productive,” and added that the United States “appreciates people discussing peace.” Secretary of State Colin Powell echoed the president when he resisted hard-line pressure to ignore the proposed accord, stating, “I have an obligation to listen to individuals who have interesting ideas.” This is also encouraging.

2003 Ron Paul 51:7
Predictably, though, this new approach is not as welcomed by those-- governments, politicians, and special interests-- who have a stake in dragging out the process indefinitely. Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat has been lukewarm at best. Extremist Arab organizations that have a special interest in continuing the violence have also rejected the Geneva Initiative. Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has rejected the Initiative out of hand. Said Mr. Sharon: “Geneva is an attempt to do something only a government can do.”

2003 Ron Paul 51:8
But the point is that governments have little incentive to finally end conflicts such as these. The United States is in places like Kosovo and Bosnia indefinitely in the name of “peace-keeping” and “peace processes”. The same will be true of our involvement in Afghanistan and Iraq.  It is not until foreign involvement ceases — that means our continued meddling in the Middle East — and the people involved demand peace that real working solutions begin to emerge. The Geneva Initiative is therefore a positive step toward peace in the Middle East. Let us step back and get out of the way!