The greatest RP interview ever with a great interviewer Allison KugelSubmitted by soule on Wed, 10/15/2008 - 13:07
Ron Paul: Washington’s True Maverick Talks Bailouts, the United States Constitution and Re-Making the US Dollar
By Allison Kugel, Senior Editor - October 15, 2008
Often called the most honest man in Washington, Ron Paul, the unsinkable Congressman from Texas’s fourteenth district, has positioned himself as resident watchdog for the United States Constitution. Ron Paul holds a point of view that, although echoing the wording of our nation’s founding fathers, rings downright alien to the United States government of today.
We are now living in a nation where Federal social and economic programs are our government, where our currency status hinges on the stock market rather than the gold standard and where our current President has taken more liberties with the United States constitution than any other President in our country’s history. Under these circumstances, Ron Paul just doesn’t seem to fit in. Reason being: we’ve grown accustomed to, and quite comfortable with, large Federal government and the act of re-shaping laws for convenience.
Ron Paul is a conservative, but hardly a Republican – not according to the cookie cutter Ronald Reagan playbook, anyway. He fancies himself a Libertarian and a Constitutionalist, yet in 2007, Paul ran for President under the guise of the Republican Party, a move that seemed out of character, but one that brought his agenda to the mainstream media and sealed his status as a cult hero to an overwhelming number of staunch Ron Paul supporters.
Though liberals, and even some conservatives, often misdiagnose Paul’s agenda, no one in either the House or the Senate can deny the consistency and integrity of his voting record. Many people may not agree with his strict interpretation of our constitution, but everyone defends his character, including Senator John McCain, who was recently denied an endorsement by Paul.
A former physician and devoted family man who never waivers in his beliefs, this quote from RonPaulFacts.com eloquently and humorously sums it up, “Ron Paul is 9 feet tall, but the weight of his conscience makes him look shorter.”
During my conversation with Ron Paul I took every opportunity to get a Washington veteran’s perspective on our current financial crisis, the seven hundred billion dollar “rescue package” which flip flopped its way through the House of Representatives, the value of the U.S. dollar, McCain and Obama politics and the future of our economy.
PR.com (Allison Kugel): What does this bailout mean for the economy, tax payers, and for the future of the U.S. Dollar?
Ron Paul & John McCain at a Republican Presidential Debate in 2007
Ron Paul: Well, for the economy it’s bad news, but this has been building for a long time and this is something that many of us had predicted would come, and now we are seeing it. It’s going to be very bad for the tax payer because taxes won’t go down. They’ll try to raise taxes but they won’t be able to so they will just use the tool of the deficit financing and inflation; that is creation of new money and credit which they are doing in wholesale right now. Which is easily translated into a weaker dollar, although that might not occur immediately and sometimes when the Fed comes up with a new program of injecting tens if not hundreds of billions of dollars into the economy this should send a signal to everybody that its going to be devastating to the dollar. Inflation will become much worse, but you might see a temporary reaction where they say “Oh this might strengthen the market and maybe the economy will heal and the dollar will be stronger.” I think everything we are doing now is very, very detrimental to the dollar which doesn’t mean to me that an alternative currency is immediately the answer. The Europeans and the Japanese all have their problems, and they’re all Fiat currencies, too (currency that is not backed by gold, but where the value is instead enforced by the government). So, just because the dollar is week doesn’t mean that it will be weak in terms of all the other currencies immediately. I think it will be weak in terms of purchasing power. That means prices will go up, I believe, in all currencies, and eventually translate into much higher gold prices.
PR.com: Barack Obama compared this financial crisis to a house on fire, and that the fire needs to be put out before we can address the problem and the guilty parties involved. Do you think the bailout package effectively puts out the fire?
Ron Paul: No. It’s pouring kerosene on the fire because the problem was created by government meddling, government regulations, government dictating, government inflation, government spending… and that’s all we’re doing. We’re spending more, running up more deficits, printing more money and trying to regulate away the bad effects of all these policies. So, yes it would be good to put out the fire, but you’ve got to know where the fire is coming from and what caused it all. But, what they’re doing is not putting out the fire. They’re just making it worse.
PR.com: In your book (The Revolution) you mentioned the concept of “legal plunder” and it just seems to apply so perfectly right now. You define legal plunder as “any use of government that enriched one group of people at the expense of another, and which would be illegal if private individuals tried to carry it out themselves.” Do you define this bailout package as legal plunder?
Ron Paul: Oh absolutely, but that’s been around for a long time. I wish I could claim [to be] the originator of that concept. But, that’s something that’s been talked about for years. Bastiat talked about it in the 1850s and he was a Frenchmen worried about the same thing back then. Yes, it is legalized plunder if you and I can’t do it. You can’t steal from your neighbor. We would still go to jail for that. But, if we send the politician to your neighbor with IRS Agents and a bunch of guns they would pretend this was moral, ethical and constitutional, and it’s none of those. So, we’re involved in that, but that’s how we got here because of this assumption that the government has the right to redistribute wealth and regulate and serve special interests. And now they’re doing it wholesale, they’re doing it to try to bail out the people who had benefited for so many years by this system. Now they’re in trouble, and now they want to really get bailed out and dump out all the bad debts on the innocent people. Those many who benefited over the years on Wall Street and in these financial areas now want the average person to buy up all this bad debt. So, we could start off, and I said this on the House floor, it’s an immoral act, it’s an unconstitutional act that makes no economic sense either.
PR.com: You obviously speak a lot about the U.S. dollar and about it no longer being backed by the gold standard as a source of our problems. But, wasn’t the gold standard done away with in the 1970’s?
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