Ron Paul, what do you say about him?  How do you cover all his nonsense in one post?  I don’t think it can happen but what I will try to do is give you highlights of his most egregious stances.  Most of the candidates on the right are scary but I find him scary for two reasons.  He is a Bircher, I don’t care what his followers say, a Bircher should not lead this nation.  Second he has relationships with underground hate groups and refuses to acknowledge how radical these relationships are overall nor does he take responsibility for things they have said in his publications.  At any rate, I could be wrong and he would make a lovely president, but I doubt that.

Ronald Ernest “Ron” Paul was born August 20, 1935 in Pennsylvania.  He is a U.S. Congressman and seems to have been running for President since the 80’s.  He attended Dormont HS, Gettysburg College and Duke University School of Medicine.  He completed his internship at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit then served in the USAF as a flight surgeon.  Paul and his wife relocated to Texas in 1968 where he established a medical practice.  As a physician he routinely lowered his fees or worked for free and refused to accept Medicaid or Medicare payments.  Since 1979 he has been elected to 10 terms in congress.  Since 1997 Paul has served the 14th congressional district, when he was not running for President.  Paul has been characterized as the “intellectual godfather” of the Tea Party Movement and he has become well known for his libertarian ideas on many political issues, often differing from both Republican and Democratic Party stances.  Ron Paul has also elected not to accept his Congressional pension.  While I do think he has been honest in a lot of his stances, I often wonder why he does not just run Libertarian.  I am pretty sure because he desperately wants that office and knows running Libertarian will not get him there alone.

He has been an outspoken critic of American foreign and monetary policies, and has been recognized for sharply opposing his own party on many issues. Paul serves on the House Committees on Foreign Affairs, Financial Services, Joint Economic Committee and is chairman of the Financial Services Subcommittee on Domestic Monetary Policy and Technology. Following his 2008 run for the Republican Party presidential nomination, Paul became the initiator of the advocacy group, Campaign for Liberty and his ideas have been expressed in numerous published articles and books.  A partial list of his books are included below.  Here is some detail on his positions.

He is a conservative, constitutional libertarian and claims he will never vote for legislation unless it is expressively authorized by the constitution.  I wonder how that squares with his right to life positions.  Maybe he justifies it by claiming person hood from conception.  If an egg is called a person, they are guaranteed “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”.  Too bad the phrase is in the Declaration of Independence and not the Constitution.  He is basically a non-interventionalist and his votes do reflect these views.

Paul wrote of his opposition to the Civil rights Act of 1964: “It not only violated the Constitution and reduced individual liberty; it also failed to achieve its stated goals of promoting racial harmony and a color-blind society. Federal bureaucrats and judges cannot read minds to see if actions are motivated by racism. Therefore, the only way the federal government could ensure an employer was not violating the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was to ensure that the racial composition of a business’s workforce matched the racial composition of a bureaucrat or judge’s defined body of potential employees. Thus, bureaucrats began forcing employers to hire by racial quota. Racial quotas have not contributed to racial harmony or advanced the goal of a color-blind society. Instead, these quotas encouraged racial balkanization, and fostered racial strife.”

In my opinion he took a very narrow view of the entire bill.  He gives reasons why he believes it failed, but no specifics.  For someone who believes in individual liberty, he seems to have a problem with anyone who is assisted in gaining those same rights.  Is it not my individual right to hope the Federal government will protect my rights as a woman or a minority group of any kind that does not enjoy full rights as granted by the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights?  And he does not mention how he thought “full and fair civil rights” could be achieved without the push of the federal government.  This is another of his ideas that are taken to the extreme in his firm belief in individual liberties.

Paul is quoted as stating “America [should] not interfere militarily, financially, or covertly in the internal affairs of other nations”, while advocating “open trade, travel, communication, and diplomacy with other nations”.  He thinks that a “couple good submarines” could protect the United States from outside interference, or attack.  He is particularly outspoken on the subject of Israel, The Fed, NATO, The WTO opposes wars of aggression, foreign aid, The UN, International Criminal Court, Law of the Sea Treaty, and the Security and Prosperty Partnership of North America.  He defends Palestinians right to liberty but he voted against intervention in the Sudan and Darfar and in the ABC debate he responded regarding Palestinians being an invented people:

“No, I don’t agree with that. And that’s just stirring up trouble. And I believe in a non-interventionist foreign policy. I don’t think we should get in the middle of these squabbles. But to go out of our way and say that so-and-so is not a real people? Technically and historically, yes– you know, under the Ottoman Empire, the Palestinians didn’t have a state, but neither did Israel have a state then too.”

Paul rejects the “dangerous military confrontation approaching with Iran and supported by many in leadership on both sides of the aisle”. He claims the current circumstances with Iran mirror those under which the Iraq War began, and has urged Congress not to authorize war with Iran.  On this stand I truly fall on the side of Ron Paul however . Then in his speech before the House on a related bill, H. Con. Res. 467, Paul rejected the proposal for “urging the Administration to seriously consider multilateral or even unilateral intervention to stop genocide in Darfur should the UN Security Council fail to act”. Paul argued the proposal was unrelated to “the US national interest” or “the Constitutional function of U.S. military forces”. The resolution passed unanimously, with Paul among 12 non-voters.  Paul was the only “no” vote on H.R. 180, the Darfur Accountability and Divestment Act of 2007 (passed House 418-1-13, not reported out of committee in the Senate), which would “require the identification of companies that conduct business operations in Sudan and prohibit United States Government contracts with such companies”. Among the bill’s findings were Collin Powell’s Senate testimony that the Sudanese government and the Janjaweed militias it supported were responsible for genocide. Paul cited the past ineffectiveness of sanctions against Cuba and Iraq as evidence against divestment from businesses connected to the Sudanese government.  And he definitely would not have intervened in the Holocaust as his answer to Jeffrey Scott Shapiro indicates:

And so I asked Congressman Paul: if he were President of the United States during World War II, and as president he knew what we now know about the Holocaust, but the Third Reich presented no threat to the U.S., would he have sent American troops to Nazi Germany purely as a moral imperative to save the Jews?

And the Congressman answered:

“No, I wouldn’t. I wouldn’t risk American lives to do that. If someone wants to do that on their own because they want to do that, well, that’s fine, but I wouldn’t do that.”

Paul then looked at me, and I politely thanked him for his time. He smiled at me again and nodded his head, and many of his young followers were also smiling, and nodding their heads in agreement. Clearly, I was the only one in the room who was disturbed by his response.

So, I guess when he says no intervention, he means none, no how, no way, no chance even if millions are dying.  To me that sounds downright uncaring, not libertarian, not allowing their free rights.  If you are being slaughtered by a government, dictator, PM or anyone, your free rights have been stripped by definition.  I think this is one of the most disturbing traits he has, this uncaring attitude for others masked as libertarian free rights.

Paul has some definite thoughts on immigration as well.  He thinks we do not adequately protect our borders and he favors legal immigration.  I wonder how his comment about building fences can keep people in with his comments on a porous border?   He frequently seems to contradict himself.

Ron Paul believes that 9/11 was a failure of bureaucracy with several departments failing within the US Government and feels the 9/11 Commission Report was simply to cover those inadequacies.

In January 2008, Paul released an economic revitalization planand named Peter Schiff and Donald Luskinas economic advisors to his campaign.  The National Journal labeled Paul’s overall economic policies in 2010 as more conservative than 78% of the House and more liberal than 22% of the House (85% and 15%, respectively for 2009). Paul believes the size of federal government must be decreased substantially. In order to restrict the federal government to what he believes are its Constitutionally authorized functions, Paul regularly votes against almost all proposals for new government spending, initiatives, or taxes often opposed by a heavy majority of his colleagues. For example, on January 22, 2007, Paul was the lone member out of 415 voting to oppose a House measure to create a National Archives exhibit on slavery and Reconstruction, seeing this as an unauthorized use of taxpayer money.

He would eliminate many federal government agencies, such as the Department of Education, Department of Energy, Department of Commerce, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, FEMA, Interstate Commerce Commerce and the IRS calling them “unnecessary bureaucracies”. Paul would severely reduce the role of the CIA; reducing its functions to intelligence-gathering.  Not sure if he is aware that many of those functions were moved into the DOD under Bush.

He claims he is against earmarks, however, there are criticisms which contend that Paul’s position is disingenuous because he often requests earmarks for bills that he supposedly knows will pass no matter which way he votes. For example, in 2007, he requested nearly $400 million in earmarks in bills he voted against.

He has signed an agreement that he will not raise taxes and he wants to completely eliminate the income tax however when asked how services would be paid for, he has no answer.

Paul has signed a pledge not to raise taxes, nothing new for a Republican there.  He does support employee-owned corporations though.

Paul’s opposition to the Fed is supported by the Austrian Business Cycle Theory, which holds that instead of containing inflation, by which it means monetary inflation rather than price inflation, the Federal Reserve, in theory and in practice, is responsible for causing monetary inflation, which in turn usually causes price inflation.  He believes in an unfettered free market and of course thinks gold purchases should not be taxed.

He considers himself the rare member of Congress who has voted for such little spending that it has never required borrowing from existing Social Security funds. To stem the Social Security crisis and meet the commitment to elderly citizens who depend on it, he requires that Congress cut down on spending, reassess monetary and spending policies, and stop borrowing heavily from foreign investors, such as those in China, who hold U.S. Treasury bonds. Paul believes young Americans should be able to opt out of the system if they would not like to pay Social Security taxes, in order to protect the system.

Paul believes that prayer in public schools should not be prohibited at the federal or state level, nor should it be made compulsory to engage in.  He is pro-life and believes life begins at conception.  He also is a staunch defender of the Second Amendment.  He is also a supporter of Jury Nullification and that juries deserve the status of tribunals, and that jurors have the right to judge the lawas well as the facts of the case.

In a December 2003 article entitled “Christmas in Secular America”, Paul wrote:

The notion of a rigid separation between church and state has no basis in either the text of the Constitution or the writings of our Founding Fathers. On the contrary, our Founders’ political views were strongly informed by their religious beliefs. Certainly the drafters of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, both replete with references to God, would be aghast at the federal government’s hostility to religion. The establishment clause of the First Amendmentwas simply intended to forbid the creation of an official state church like the Church of England, not to drive religion out of public life. The Founding Fathers envisioned a robustly Christian yet religiously tolerant America, with churches serving as vital institutions that would eclipse the state in importance. Throughout our nation’s history, churches have done what no government can ever do, namely teach morality and civility. Moral and civil individuals are largely governed by their own sense of right and wrong, and hence have little need for external government. This is the real reason the collectivistLeft hates religion: Churches as institutions compete with the state for the people’s allegiance, and many devout people put their faith in God before putting their faith in the state. Knowing this, the secularists wage an ongoing war against religion, chipping away bit by bit at our nation’s Christian heritage. Christmas itself may soon be a casualty of that war.”

He also voted against The Patriot Act, is against national ID, believes “all voluntary associations are ok and people can call it whatever they want” (Gay Marriage).

There are many more stances he takes, however in the interest of keeping this shorter than a mini-book I have tried to highlight the hot buttons of our day.  I consider Ron Paul a “partial candidate” in that he has some beliefs that I would wholeheartedly agree with, then he goes off the rails with something so outrageous that I just shake my head.  In Ron Paul’s world there basically would be very few rules and it is not clear in my research how he would handle things if his ideas did not work.  He has written plenty of legislation but has only had 4 bills make it to the floor and only 1 passed.  More than likely because his ideas are so out there that to vote for a small portion of the bill is unconscionable with regard to the whole.   A man with his belief system would probably be better elected at the state level to see how it goes before giving him a shot at the entire country.

Next up: Jon Huntsman

The Revolution: A Manifesto

End The Fed

Liberty Defined: 50 Essential Issues That Affect Our Freedom

Jeffrey Scott Shapiro on Ron Paul

Ron Paul In 2009: I Wouldn’t Risk American Lives’ To Save Jews From Holocaust

 

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Kalima
Admin

Sue, thank you much for doing this series on the so called front runners. This one sounds like a truly nasty piece of work, and I find nothing at all redeeming about him, or understand why so many young people would fall for his deeply rooted hatred, and make no mistake, he is a hater. This motley bunch of rejects will surely go down in U.S. history as the most appallingly ignorant, and dumb collection of lying fools ever to run for POTUS. Nice legacy for the GOP to chew on for years to come. Thanks again for taking the… Read more »

AdLib
Admin

Sue, another wonderful article in this series! Thank you so much for these! Let’s begin with Paul’s position on Personhood. I find it absolutely indefensible that anyone who claims to be a Libertarian would support a law where the government would prevent citizens from using birth control or women having control over their own bodies. For absolutists, there eventually comes a time when their philosophy crashes like an out of control Ferrari and wraps itself around a lamp post of hypocrisy. His opposition to the Civil Rights Act is reflective not of libertarianism but out and out racism. Opposing a… Read more »

choicelady
Member

Sue – bloody brilliant as always! I do believe Paul wants NO government so that corporations can create fiefdoms with private armies to march into nations with resources they want and take them. His property-based libertarianism means he has no MORAL opposition to war but does not want government to decide when to kill people and when not. Only self interested gain should dictate that. Human rights have no place in such a world – government should not intervene to protect people from this adventurism, foreign OR domestic. Capitalism will always do what is best for its own interests, and… Read more »

kesmarn
Admin

Thanks again, Sue, for your continuing series on the candidates and all the research time and effort you’ve put into it. What a valuable contribution this is at election time. Paul is so seductive on a certain level. During the debates he gives these eloquent and impassioned speeches about what a huge mistake the Iraq war was, and how much American life, time and resources were wasted in a reckless and ill-advised effort. And you’re sitting there, watching and thinking: “Yes! Finally one of these guys on the right gets it right!” Same with his stance on gay marriage. (“Let… Read more »

Nirek
Member

Another fine post. Thanks for the research. We all owe you a debt of gratitude for the information. I found the same stuff but did not read it all and this time I did. I don’t think I would like to have Paul as president. The only thing I agree with him about is not going to war without just cause and Congress declaring war.
He and all the other R candidates are poor excuses of candidates.

Regards Nirek.