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Channel: Fox Business
Host: Davis Asman
Channel: Fox Business
Host: Davis Asman
Show: Freedom Watch
Judge Andrew Napolitano: Hello and welcome to Freedom Watch, your daily dose of raw liberty streaming online at FoxNews.com. I’m your host, Judge Andrew Napolitano here defending freedom, depending your natural rights and defending your right to have a government that stays within the confines of the Constitution.
You’ve all heard me state repeatedly that everything the government runs is broke. Social Security is broke. Medicare is broke. Medicaid is broke. Amtrak is broke. The post office is broke. Now, the same bureaucrats that have run the government into the ground want to run healthcare and they also want us to believe that they can fix the economy and repair the damage done to the dollar by recklessly borrowing and ruthlessly printing money and by spending into the trillions. They forget that the government consumes wealth and only the free market can produce wealth. In an upcoming article in Forbes Magazine, Congressman Ron Paul says “be prepared for the worst.” The large scale government intervention in the economy is going to end badly.
It’s now my pleasure to introduce one of America’s great defenders of freedom and liberty today, Congressman Ron Paul joins us from our nation’s capital. He is the author of the New York Times’ bestseller, one of his several bestsellers, “End the Fed”. Congressman Paul, welcome back to Freedom Watch.
Ron Paul: Thank you, Judge. It’s good to be with you.
Judge Andrew Napolitano: Why should we expect the worst and what do you warn in this article that we should all expect?
Ron Paul: Well, as you said in your opening statement what has the government done right, and if you were going to turn medical care over to the government, their test was how well they could distribute vaccine for H1N1 and the question of whether it was necessary or not, all that exists. But they did that so poorly and intervene so viciously in our rights and that sent a message. I think that is part of the problem going throughout the society and throughout the markets right now. It’s that the government is just totally inept and the pretense is that the stimulus is working. You hear the liberal writers saying, “Oh, the stimulus has worked. All we need is more of it and it would have really worked.” Well, the trouble is it didn’t work. They took billions and billions, if not trillions of dollars away from the people and gave it to the government and the government spent it, which means they misallocated credit and resources and they make things worse, and so we haven’t changed anything.
This idea that the GDP went up, well, you know, they measure GDP by government spending as well. That’s included in it, so what is this? We either borrow the money from the Chinese or we print the money, we spend the money. It goes in and you buy up clunkers or buy up houses and say that, “Oh, the GDP went up.” Well, it has to be temporary and that’s been my argument. That’s my argument in the article, it’s that if you see economic growth returning, you’re kidding yourself because all the bad policies are in place and unfortunately from the people I deal with here in Washington, there aren’t very many free market economists or believe in the free market. They’ve all been trained and indoctrinated by Keynesian economics and they really don’t believe in freedom and sound money in the sense that I do.
Judge Andrew Napolitano: You point out in your article, Congressman Paul, that we are seeing some little snippets of growth here and there today. You called them some green shoots of growth, just as we saw in 1930 when Hoover and later FDR, of course, were trying to micromanage the economy from Washington D.C. Why do we see these snippets of growth and why should we reject the government’s claims that they are a sign of better things to come?
Ron Paul: Well, I think it is part of human nature because nothing goes down until the very end stages with a currency. The end stage is a currency does fall off a cliff and it goes down, but if you look at the dollar, the dollar has been going down for many, many decades. So all markets go up and down and have blips, but you have to look at trends. So because the market just really was bad a year ago, the fact that the, you know, a lot of money is pumped in and people are trying to stimulate things, even when they are artificial, it will look like there is some growth in the economy, but I think that’s all a delusion. I think it’s a mistake and the worse thing we could do is assume that what we have done here in Washington in the last year has been helpful. That is very, very dangerous because it has all been very damaging. (more…)
Channel: Russia Today
Dina Gusovsky: A national emergency is declared in the United States, but it doesn’t have anything to do with the war in Afghanistan, the economic crisis, or nukes in Iran. Instead, it’s H1N1, the swine flu. But is all this media hysteria really justified, and is the threat as dire as some would have us believe?
Joining me to discuss this and other burning issues, both here in the U.S. and abroad, is Congressman Paul. Thank you so much for speaking with me.
So you have called this full vaccination program a failure. Why?
Ron Paul: Well, they have failed to get the vaccine to the people that need it. They’ve been working on it for months and months, they’ve spent a couple of billion of dollars and I have several physicians in my family and they don’t have any vaccine in their office, so even if they wanted to give it they don’t have it. This just demonstrates that when governments decide to do something, they’re pretty inept at doing it even though a lot of money was spent. And yet the American people are indicating that they want federal government to take over medical care, but if they can’t even deliver a vaccine, I don’t see how they can deliver medical care to everybody any more efficiently.
Dina Gusovsky: You have questioned before why Barack Obama doesn’t get his own children vaccinated, and just recently we found out that he, in fact, had Sasha and Melia get the shot. Do you think that this was a response at all to what you might have said?
Ron Paul: I don’t know the exact sequence. I know when I did it I obviously believed he hadn’t because he had announced in a press conference, “Oh no, they have not had a shot”. But I thought he probably figured it was in their best interest politically to do it. But isn’t that sort of sad that if he deep down in his heart didn’t want his kids to have it, that he was willing to do this. Of course, the analogy I made there was, you know, so many of our presidents, Republicans or Democrats, always pushed government education. At the same time our Presidents don’t send their kids to public school here in DC. So they talk big that they’re going to take care of everybody, but they want special treatment for their own children.
Dina Gusovsky: You talk about having the freedom of choice when it comes to this. You know, we’ve seen rallies in New York where doctors and nurses were saying, “We don’t want this to be mandatory”. Do you think that Americans will ever come to a point where they will have to get this vaccine, it won’t be an option anymore?
Ron Paul: Of course, while a lot of Americans are fearful of this – even I’m fearful – I don’t want to do away with the vaccines. I do think that we give too many vaccines and we can overdo it. But I want these choices to be made by patients and doctors, not by government. And the fact that New York is forcing government employees, it might be a sign of the times if it’s not reversed. If the American people go along with it, that’s what’s going to happen. And under these emergency powers that were declared they can actually, you know, quarantine people in large numbers and say, “You either do it or else we’ll put you here and we’ll inoculate everybody”. That is hardly the way I want to accomplish this and solve our problems.
Dina Gusovsky: You’re a doctor and critics of the vaccine itself are coming out and saying that in the long run it’s actually going to do more harm than good. Do you agree with this?
Ron Paul: I think it can do damage and some children can be affected. It is a live virus, it’s attenuated, it’s not supposed to be as virulent. But yes, there are rare cases of people dying from reaction to medication. And if this flu is not so serious, which it doesn’t sound to be… you know, they were yelling and screaming about a 1000 deaths. Well, regular flu kills many, many more than that every year and nobody gets up in arms about it. This whole idea about working so hard on this one vaccine actually makes shortages in the other vaccine as well. So it really doesn’t make a lot of sense.
Dina Gusovsky: There seems to me so much media uproar regarding this issue. Perhaps even taking precedence over other burning issues, particularly when it comes to foreign policy and the situation in Afghanistan. Because the real crisis seems to be occurring within the White House with that debate to send more troops or change the military strategy completely. What are your thoughts on this? (more…)
by Ron Paul
There has been a lot of talk in Washington recently about senior citizens, mostly about how various healthcare reform models would help or hurt them. But there is another critical issue that has quietly devastated seniors financially over the last few decades. It concerns how the cost of living is calculated. How does the administration justify not giving a cost of living increase to Social Security recipients this year?
According to the official Consumer Price Index calculation, life has gotten cheaper for the first time in decades. If the government can show statistically that the cost of living has gone down, not up, then they can make the case for not giving a cost of living increase to social security recipients. But does this match reality? Using older calculations of CPI, the cost of living has actually increased – by roughly 5 percent!
The CPI (Consumer Price Index) is a calculation based on the average price of a fixed basket of goods that was initially designed to help businesses adjust for inflation. The government eventually started using it to determine cost of living adjustments for entitlement programs. Couple that with politicians’ discovery that they could raid the social security trust fund to pay for new spending programs, and you have a perfect storm to deny seniors what they were promised, while hiding the true size of the deficit. For politicians, it is a win-win.
For seniors, it is a different story. Economist John Williams of Shadow Government Statistics has estimated that if the original methodology of CPI had not changed, Social Security checks would be nearly double what they are today. This represents a lot of money that politicians have been able to literally steal from seniors, to spend on their own wasteful programs. One example of how they do this is to substitute hamburger for steak, which lowers the average price of that basket of goods. But living on hamburger, or maybe dog food, instead of steak does not represent a constant standard of living. This renders the measurement virtually meaningless, even though politically it comes in very handy.
I have introduced legislation to keep politicians in Washington from ever raiding the Social Security trust fund again. HR 219 The Social Security Preservation Act would assure that all monies collected by the Social Security Trust Fund would only be used in payments to beneficiaries, or be placed in interest bearing certificates of deposit. This would at least stop the bleeding of the fund, and take away some incentive to tease and torture the numbers in order to give seniors the minimal amount. This would also cut off a source of funding for government growth, so it is not likely to get easy support from many politicians.
It is bad enough that Washington imposes high payroll taxes on American workers. The least Congress could do is use the tax dollars for their stated purpose. Instead, seniors will have a harder and harder time trying to survive on a fixed income in an economy based on variables and deception. For them, it is too late to start over. Today’s young people will be forced to pay into the system for years to come. The first step towards solving the impending crisis facing Social Security is to stop politicians from raiding the trust fund and to significantly cut federal government spending.
Download the interview as an MP3 file here (27:01 minutes).
Show: King World News
Eric King: This is King World News, I’m Eric King, and you’re about to hear a tremendous interview with Congressman Ron Paul, author of the Audit The Fed bill and a champion of freedom in this country. Remember to go to our homepage at www.KingWorldNews.com for more interviews. This week we also have popular financial blogger, Mike Shedlock, known as Mish, as well as Rick Rule, one of the most street smart pros in the resource sector.
Joining us now is Congressman Ron Paul, a champion of freedom and the Constitution, and the originator of the Audit The Fed bill. Congressman Paul, I believe like you that the Fed is immoral and needs to be abolished, and we’ll get to that in just a minute. But first talk to listeners about the importance of the need to audit the Federal Reserve to know exactly what they are up to, please.
Ron Paul: I think that is the first step; the American people need to know exactly what the Fed does. And we’ve been denied this information from the very beginning. The Federal Reserve was started in 1913 and has never really been audited. One time they tried to change the law in 1978, but it did more harm than good because it excluded all the important issues that should not be audited. Once again, we’re in a crisis and the bill becomes more appropriate. We have 307 co-sponsors on it, and I believe this is the first step to find out who gets the benefits, who gets the loans, why and what kind of agreements they have around the world, and then go from there. Of course, I would end the Fed, but others would do other things. It seems like a large coalition of both liberals and conservatives agree that the Federal Reserve should be exposed and we should know what they’re doing.
Eric King: Regarding the HR 1207 bill, the Federal Reserve stated that it would make interest rates skyrocket and the dollar would de-value significantly if the audit took place. Did that not strike you as a strange way to react to an audit?
Ron Paul: Yeah, they’re trying to build up fear. What they’re implying is all of a sudden we’re going to have control of monetary policy, which the bill exclusively does not do. That is not the intent because I realized how controversial that would be, and besides, although Barnie Frank is working with me to some degree, he and I wouldn’t agree on monetary policy. But we do agree on transparency and that we should know about it. So the Fed chairman comes back and says, “Oh, with you guys looking over our shoulders we’re going to be pressured not to be lenient with the monetary spigots and you’ll put pressure on us.” But if anything, political pressure – they want lower interest rates, that means there is political pressure on the Fed already. I mean, they accommodate the President, they accommodate the elections, and of course they accommodate the banks, that’s political pressure, they accommodate Goldman Sachs, that’s political pressure. But for him to say that all of a sudden if this bill were to be passed it would raise interest rates, I think he’s striking out and trying to scare the people. (more…)
In this Audit the Fed update, Ron Paul explains what is happening with HR 1207 in the Monetary Policy Subcommittee, describes his plan to protect HR 1207 in the full Financial Services Committee, and provides ideas on actions we can take to keep the bill from being watered down.
The 13 Democrats on the House Financial Services Committee mentioned by Dr. Paul are:
Rep. John Adler, NJ (202) 225-4765, Web Contact: Link
Rep. Travis Childers, MS (202) 225-4306, Web Contact: Link
Rep. Steve Driehaus, OH (202) 225-2216, Web Contact: Link
Rep. Alan Grayson, FL (202) 225-2176, Web Contact: Link
Rep. Rubén Hinojosa, TX (202) 225-2531, Web Contact: Link
Rep. Suzanne Kosmas, FL (877) 956-7627, Web Contact: Link
Rep. Dan Maffei, NY (202) 225-3701, Web Contact: Link
Rep. Brad Miller, NC (202) 225-3032, Web Contact: Link
Rep. Walt Minnick, ID (202) 225-6611, Web Contact: Link
Rep. Ed Perlmutter, CO (202)-225-2645, Web Contact: Link
Rep. David Scott, GA (202) 225-2939, Web Contact: Link
Rep. Brad Sherman, CA (202) 225-5911, Web Contact: Link
Rep. Jackie Speier, CA (202) 225-3531, Web Contact: Link
Ron Paul: I’d like to give you an update on HR 1207. For the last couple of weeks I have been talking with Mel Watt, the chairman of the monetary policy sub-committee in dealing with HR 1207. And it seemed like there were reasonable discussions but I never expected a whole lot to come from this. I never expected as much support from Mel Watt as I believe I can, and hopefully still get from Barney Frank. But the way the process works is a sub-committee does get first crack at it. What happens in the full committee is a different story and we don’t know exactly what will happen. But there is no doubt that Mel Watt is not interested in HR 1207. And I don’t think he’s all that bashful about speaking for the Federal Reserve because that was in the conversation quite frequently, that he was trying to satisfy all parties including the Fed. But that shouldn’t surprise any of us. They’re very, very powerful and very, very influential.
But when he took HR 1207 and marked it up and sent it back to me, obviously, it was something I could not support. Although there were two items in it that were rather minor that both he and I have agreed to, but it’s not as significant as it should be. The one part, though, was that having a timeframe on when we could look at certain procedures of the Federal Reserve, and that was accepted. But the fact that they took away the audit itself, those numbers don’t mean a whole lot, except in one area – and that’s dealing with the 13(3) lending facilities that the Federal Reserve has more or less conceded that they’re going to have to reveal what has happened there. But that is minor. As a matter of fact, HR 1207 doesn’t even mention 13(3), we’re mainly talking about an overall audit of overall monetary policy and arrangements oversees. (more…)
In his latest video update, Ron Paul reports on a recent House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing concerning Iran as well as a House Financial Services Committee hearing on financial regulations. He also comments on the latest GDP data.
Ron Paul: I’m Congressman Ron Paul and this is a weekly update for the Campaign for Liberty.
Update on the House Foreign Affairs Committee
We were quite busy this week in Washington, a lot of hearings and a lot of activity. First off, we had very significant hearings in the Foreign Affairs Committee. This was somewhat different because in the past with previous chairmen of this committee, they would frequently bring up resolutions which I considered very, very important and they’d bring them to the floor, under suspension, with no announcement, no hearings and no mark up in committee and sometimes, they’d bring it up under unanimous consent. Well, at least, Howard Berman, the chairman, brought this to the committee and we did have a bit of a debate and a vote. Unfortunately, there were only four of us that were actually opposed to the bill, and this is the bill that’s to put much stronger sanctions on the Iranians and it is to prevent petroleum-refined products getting into Iran. And the debate was the same old story. You know, “they’re a great danger to the world and if we don’t stop them, someday they might get a nuclear weapon.” So it was war propaganda. It reminded me, and I said so in the committee, it reminded me of some of the talk that happened before we went into Iraq.
But nevertheless, I tried my best to make the point that it won’t be of any benefit to us or to them. It will aggravate and anger the people. The people will not be turning against the [Iranian] leadership, which are out on the fringes. They’ll turn their anger and hostility toward us. But it is a significant event because it represents the continued and perpetual determination to alienate the Iranians and it’s a big debate over nuclear activity and whether or not they might have a nuclear weapon someday. It’s a significant event, but quite frankly, I think our policies of intervention in that area of the country causes more trouble than the Iranian government itself. They are a Third World nation. They don’t have intercontinental ballistic missiles. They have no nuclear weapons. In 2003, our CIA said they quit any effort to make a nuclear weapon. But I’m sure they have an incentive to make a nuclear weapon, but most of the incentive is the fact that we have an interventionist foreign policy. The Pakistanis have nuclear weapons. The Chinese have nuclear weapons. The Indians have nuclear weapons. The Israelis have nuclear weapons. We’re surrounding their country. We have nuclear weapons. So it’s not the most outlandish thought in the world for a country like that wanting to have those weapons.
But I hope that we come to our senses, but right now, we have a President that seems to be determined to follow the foreign policy of neoconservatives. Fortunately, though, he is trying to have some negotiations and trying to talk to the Iranian government, but quite frankly, I think behind the scenes they’re really planning to continue this more aggressive foreign policy. Someday, when this country comes to its senses or we go broke, I’m sure this policy will change.
Update on the House Financial Services Committee
This week we also had significant hearings in the Financial Services Committee and this brought Secretary of the Treasury Geithner to our committee, and of course, I had my five minutes of questioning with him. The reason for the hearings is to start looking at this bill that the chairman of Financial Services, Barney Frank, is bringing forth, which is 280 pages of more and more regulations of the financial system. The point I made with Secretary Geithner was that regulations can hardly solve the problem if you’re only treating the symptoms of a flawed monetary policy. (more…)
Ron Paul: “I probably dislike [the current system] as much as Michael Moore does. But he’s complaining about it being part of capitalism. It has nothing to do with capitalism. This is corporatism, the corporations. I agree with him.”
Show: Larry King Live
Larry King:… Ron Paul, Republican of Texas. He ran for president this last election. He is here to react to what we’ve just heard. Concerning healthcare, Mr. Moore believes that universal healthcare is everyone’s right. He threatens that the Democrats will lose seats if they don’t support it. What is your stand on it, Congressman?
Ron Paul: I think it’s a fallacy to say that people have a right to somebody else’s services. Now, you have a right to your life and you have a right to your liberty and you have a right to earn a living. You ought to have a right to keep it, but you have a responsibility to take care of yourself because you don’t have a right to get something from government because government has nothing, so the government has to take it from somebody and give it to you, so it’s a failed policy. It is a form of socialism and socialism doesn’t work. It leaves to a big kind of…
Larry King: So if you have no money and you fall down on the street with a heart attack, you have no money and no one should take care of you? The government should not provide an ambulance or treat you?
Ron Paul: Well, no, but we don’t have a history in this country of that happening, even before government started managing healthcare. I practiced medicine in both circumstances in the early sixties. We didn’t have managed care and I worked in a Catholic hospital. I made $3 an hour and nobody was ever turned away and there were many, many church hospitals and you had Shriner’s Hospitals and a lot of free care was given. Today, even with managed care, they complain about, “Oh, somebody doesn’t have health insurance and somebody is going to die because they don’t have health insurance.”
But really, people don’t get turned away. I mean, accidents happen. Man is imperfect, but for the most part, anybody including anybody illegal can go to the emergency room and they always get taken care of. They just don’t get thrown out in the street.
Larry King: Are you saying you like the current system?
Ron Paul: No, I probably dislike it as much as Michael Moore does. But he’s complaining about it being part of capitalism. It has nothing to do with capitalism. This is corporatism, the corporations. I agree with him. Corporations run things; the drug companies’ lobbyists, the insurance companies’ lobbyists and the hospital managements’ lobbyists, the AMA lobbyists and that’s all managed care and we have a system where money and bigness influences the government, but that’s corporatism. That’s not capitalism. But we want our free markets…
Larry King: Okay, how do you change that? (more…)
Earlier this week, Congressman Ron Paul sent a letter to all Members of Congress asking them to support his legislation HR 219 The Social Security Preservation Act, which simply states that all monies raised by the Social Security Trust Fund will be used only in payments to beneficiaries or invested in interest-bearing certificates of deposit.
“This year the Social Security trust fund will pay out more in benefits than it takes in in taxes, is only 5 years away from being permanently in the red, and will be totally bankrupt by 2037,” Congressman Paul states.
The letter goes on to point out that despite Social Security’s pending financial crises, big-spending politicians continue raiding the Social Security trust fund to hide the true size of the federal deficit while they create new spending programs at the expense of America’s seniors and taxpayers.
“Whatever long-term Social Security plan you favor, I hope you agree the first step in treatment is to stop the bleeding,” Paul concludes.
HR 219 was introduced in January of this year, has been referred to the Committee on Ways and Means, and currently has 14 cosponsors.
by Ron Paul
A growing number of Americans are becoming aware of the Federal Reserve System, what it is, how it has precipitated our financial crisis, and how it continues to pursue policies that delay economic recovery and weaken the dollar.
The Fed’s actions, combined with the federal government’s bailout bills and stimulus packages, have struck a nerve in the American people.
Recent polls have shown that more than 75 percent of Americans support efforts to audit the Fed, something which my bill, HR 1207, the Federal Reserve Transparency Act, aims to do. HR 1207 has the support of 304 members of Congress, and the Senate version of the bill, S. 604, is supported by 31 U.S. senators.
Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke has embarked on an ambitious program of monetary expansion, more than doubling the monetary base to almost $1.9 trillion and doubling the size of its balance sheet to over $2 trillion, placing the American economy in a precarious position.
If all this excess money begins to be loaned out, the Fed risks creating a hyperinflationary crisis similar to 1920s Germany. If the Fed contracts this money, it risks harming the banks it desperately wants to see bailed out.
Venue: House Financial Services Committee
Topic: Systemic Regulation, Prudential Matters, Resolution Authority and Securitization
Ron Paul: Mr. Secretary, more and more people today are looking critically at the Federal Reserve and wondering what’s going on. And, of course, the people are asking more questions and they want to know exactly what role the Federal Reserve has played in our financial crisis.
In the past, the Federal Reserve was held in very high esteem; they produced prosperity and full employment and stable prices. Today they are wondering somewhat differently, and many economists are joining in this. Today the Congress is by the number of 307 who are asking for more transparency of the Federal Reserve.
But also everybody agrees that we have a financial crisis and we’re working very hard on regulations and I think sometimes we get misdirected in this because if indeed the source of our problem is coming from the Federal Reserve, then you’re depending too much on regulations without looking at the real cause. We’re treating symptoms rather than the cause.
Just the idea that the Federal Reserve is the lender of last resort contributes horrendously to moral hazard, especially when we’re dealing with the reserve currency of the world. But if everybody knows that no matter what happens, the lender is going to be there to bail them out.
You had an interview this year and you were asked what you thought were the real causes of this crisis, and I was fascinated with your answer, because in a way it seems like you might have agreed a little bit with what I am saying. You listed as number one that the monetary policy was too loose for too long, and that created this just huge boom in asset prices, money chasing risks, people trying to get a higher return. That was just overwhelming powerful.
And I think that really makes my point and unless you deal with that and the suggestion is that what we do is move in with more regulations and hope and pray that it will work. But again, if this is true, that a monetary policy way too loose lasted too long, how can the solution be speeding it up? How can you say, “Well, this is the real problem so we’ll double the money supply, interest rates were too low at 1%, so let’s make them a 0.25%”. I mean, I can’t reconcile this. How can you reconcile this on just common sense? (more…)
Venue: Foreign Affairs Committee Hearing
Ron Paul: Mr. Chairman, thank you and I oppose this legislation [HR 2194: Iran Refined Petroleum Sanctions Act of 2009]. I do not challenge the motivation of those who support this legislation, but I think it’s deeply flawed and I think it’s going to do a lot more harm than good. It reminds of all the talk that preceded us going into Iraq; all the wonderful things that could come by putting more pressure on a particular country starting first with sanctions. Sanctions are an act of war.
It was suggested that Venezuela may be going to send oil over there and that means intercepts on the high sea, but the best way for others to look at this to see my point is, how would we react if somebody closed down our oil imports. I mean, we would be pretty unhappy about that. To think that this is not a serious matter, I think it’s being rather naive.
First off, the Iranians have a right to enrich for peaceful purposes. They have never been found in violations of NPT treaty, not once. Our NIE report says they haven’t been working on weapons since 2003 and just because you disagree with it, you just can’t dismiss that report out of hand. So there is a lot of distortion on this information that we get. (more…)