Monday, February 20, 2012

A Look at Ron Paul's Thoughts

Like many, I've never taken Ron Paul seriously enough.  He seems so radical.  But when you listen to him explain himself, he's not nearly as radical as he sounds.   Take his stance on removing federal law making drugs illegal.   It wasn't that long ago that there were no federal laws prohibiting cocaine or many other drugs. Cocaine was in Coca Cola!  Now we have this vast government bureaucracy both here, abroad and on the border, intruding on people's rights, trying to regulate the same drug with debatable effect.    Al Capone's rise was itself the result of the Federal Government's banning of alcohol which opened up the black market in the same.  This latter point is exactly Ron Paul's point about drug laws!  The Feds imprisoned Al Capone based on tax evasion.  And mail fraud was the only other basis for many other Federal government interventions in the early 20th century: there were no racketeering laws, no expansive and intrusive FBI and CIA.  Now these agencies are spying on everyone, everywhere and costing $100s of billions and debatable results.  The Federal government's mandate at one time was quite minimal and the size of the Fed Govt was minimal for the majority of US history.

He sees the growth of government to be the biggest threat to your liberty.  This in particular I believe and wish to warn about.  Ron Paul basically wants to return the country to the way it was for most of our history from 1787 to 1929.

Here's some of his views from a recent speech and some other libertarian tenants:

  • a moratorium on “illegal” airport searches (from a recent campaign speech)
  • the dissolution of the Department of Education, the Department of Energy, the Department of Commerce, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, and the Department of the Interior
  • repeal of the Patriot Act
  • repatriation of American troops stationed overseas;
  • an immediate end to bailouts
  • eventual end to the federal income tax;
  • he called for a trillion-dollar cut to the federal budget.
  • he calls for the eradication of the Federal Reserve, the rejection of paper money, and a return to the gold standard 
  • He advocated pulling the United States out of the United Nations, NATO and the International Monetary Fund 
Other libertarian tenants that Ron Paul may or may not exactly agree (my comments in italics):
  • They believe in non-interventionalist foreign policy. Do we need troops stationed in 140 countries? Of course not!
  • Libertarians do not believe in borders. They want to tear down the fences and the walls and allow immigrants to enter our country in order to pursue a better life for themselves and their families. Despite all border control, the US Mexico border is essentially open and those that want to come here are already here. Why pretend that we're in control? We're not!
  • Libertarians believe that all people have the right to be married, including gay people. At a minimum, the issue should be a state-by-state decision but equal rights/equal treatment should be supported in The Constitution. Why persecute fellow US citizens who want deeper commitments and accept deeper responsibility?
  • Libertarians believe that there should be no laws governing a woman’s body, and there should be no laws infringing upon a woman’s right to choose.
  • Libertarians don’t want Medicare or Social Security. Libertarians don’t believe that there should be fire departments, police departments (I find this a bit hard to believe since they are local entities??), public transportation, grants for education, unemployment, disability, food stamps, and every other type of government system and assistance that you can think of.
  • Libertarians wish to eliminate taxes in order to eliminate the expansive government programs. The US didn't have a Federal Income tax or a Federal Reserve until 1913. Libertarians believe that without these taxes, individuals will have more money in their pockets and will be able to afford all of these things. If someone is unable to provide themselves or their family with school, healthcare, or food, people need to rely on family members, church, or a private charity.
  • Libertarians believe that government’s role in the market should be to protect property owner’s rights. There should be no FDA, equal employment opportunities, public unions, minimum wage, payroll taxes, safe food handling requirements, consumer protections, regulations that protect against financial conflicts of interest and fraud, and business licenses.
  • Libertarians believe that business owners should have the right to deny entry to minorities and/or women and/or people with disabilities, if that is how business owners wish to run their businesses.
  • Libertarians believe that all drugs should be legalized at the Federal level and legality left to the states. It is felt that legalization would drastically reduce crime and solve overcrowding in prisons. Libertarians view drugs the same way as alcohol prohibition. Libertarians believe that alcohol prohibition created the Mafia and, likewise, drug prohibition created the Crips, Bloods, and drive-by shootings.
Adoption of these principles would certainly put many functions of government back to the states and return the country back to a not-too-distant past when there was a minimal federal beaurocracy. Federal taxes didn't exist until 1913 with the adoption of the 16th amendment to the Constitution!! I bet you didn't know that! I didn't.

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