Casey on Ron Paul
by Louis James, Editor, International
by Doug Casey: Debunking
Doug, weve had a lot of readers ask us what you think about
Ron Paul, and hes just announced hes running for president
again. Whats your take?
Ron is a decent human being. Ive met him on a number of occasions,
mostly when he came to meetings of the Eris
Society, and always found him to be philosophically sound, as
well as pleasant and sincere. A genuinely likable guy. As far as
Ive observed, hes always done exactly what hes
said hed do certainly when it comes to voting against
But if youre
asking if hes got a chance of becoming president, Ill
skip the Slim and none joke, and just say not a chance.
The proverbial snowball in the mythical hot place has better odds.
not surprised. Short of something far-fetched, like L. Neil Smith
and Aaron Zelmans novel Hope, in which a gun-toting libertarian
becomes president because the other candidates happen to die the
night of the election, I cant see an honest libertarian
or any honest man at all becoming president. But lets
talk about the man first. How well do you know him?
Just socially. The only political candidate Ive really been
close friends with was Harry Browne, who was the Libertarian Party
Presidential candidate in 1996 and 2000. I genuinely supported Harry,
partly because wed been friends since the mid-70s. And
because I dont believe we ever disagreed about anything beyond
what wine to have with dinner. And because Harry was the only avowed
anarchist that I know of to have ever seriously run for president.
And because he promised that, if he won, hed make me Chief
of the Secret Police just kidding.
though, I thought that Harry could win several million votes just
because he was so rational and eloquent. And because I believe that,
since most people are basically decent, there would be at least
that many who would support him, if they just knew he existed. But
I was wrong. It shows that Im actually not a cynic, but a
romantic. Of course its also said that a cynic is just a frustrated
romantic. And that may well be true.
about religion? Dr. Paul is a Christian
Most people who are Christians are Christians only by an accident
of birth because their parents were. The same is true of
Muslims. And Jews. And Hindus. And almost all religious types. Its
the same as politics, actually. Most people are Democrats or Republicans
because their parents were. Its reflexive and its easy
even if its totally irrational.
I lose some
respect for people who believe things because of an accident of
birth, but Ive got nothing against Christians being Christian.
Its when they try to force their religion on me that I have
a problem. More and more, though, religion in the West has nothing
to do with theology; it has much more to do with a general sense
of shared identity and values. Even if its mostly just lip
Anyway, I think
Ron is sincere about his Christianity. But I feel confident hes
the type of Christian who admires Christ who was actually
very admirable in many ways as opposed to the uptight kind
of Christian who mimics the strictures based on the aberrant theories
Christ, I think, would have objected to.
Yes. I suspect if Paul had tried to join the apostles Jesus would
have politely, but firmly, asked him to go away. Jesus was a rather
Buddha-like figure, whereas Paul was a proto-Leninist.
of murders, massacres, and whole wars fought in the name of a peaceful
carpenter who taught people to turn the other cheek and forgive
just shows you how capable of willful ignorance and self-serving
myopia people are.
getting in to a different subject
Back to Ron; hes not
the type to impose his religion on people. Thank God Huckabee, that
smarmy, slick preacher, has dropped out of the race. In any event,
I believe Rons libertarian principles would restrain him from
seriously mixing his religion with his politics, even if he were
So no worries
there any other policy areas that would concern you, issues you
know you disagree with Dr. Paul on?
Well, hes not an anarchist, as was Harry Browne, and he could
support a lot more laws than I would, but our visions of how to
restore America are probably about 90% the same. Wed be pushing
in so much the same direction less government, fewer laws,
fewer regulations, lower taxes, bring the troops home, etc.
it would probably be a long time before our 10% differences would
become problematical. And hed never get that far; hed
have to fight tooth and nail to get any of that 90% of the needed
change we agree upon done.
But this is
entirely an academic discussion. The chances of Ron even being a
contender for the nomination of the totally corrupt Republican Party
are zero. And if he got it, the chances of his being elected are
less than zero cmon, this is the same electorate that
just put in Obama.
And if, through
some form of Olympian intervention, he was elected, real change
would be impossible. The NSA, the CIA, the FBI, the DoD, and the
rest of them are now an empire within the empire. If he ever tried
to make serious changes I suspect hed get a very serious talking-to,
much more scary than a small town mayor might get from the Mob.
The situation is beyond redemption in my view.
but... Theres the Tea Party, The Libertarian Party, even a
few genuinely pro-market Republicans out there all constituencies
that might vote for Ron Paul. There are a lot of disillusioned people
out there, a good number of whom might vote for an honest man, even
if they dont agree with him about everything. How can you
say theres absolutely no chance he could win?
To start with, about half the population is on the dole 45
million are on food stamps alone. Worse yet are all the corporate
welfare recipients and high-finance fat cats in bed with the government
there are just too many people whose rice bowls would be
broken for Ron to get elected. Organized labor would never stand
for him, and much of corporate America would actually be on their
theres no constituency that would really be for him. The Libertarian
Party is a completely ineffectual nonentity, and unworthy of support,
as they proved by nominating the Congressman Bob Barr for their
last candidate. The Tea Party has no central philosophy, as weve
not to mention Rons own well-publicized libertarian ideas
that are easy to paint in a bad light, like his opposition to the
War on (Some) Drugs. The stars are just not aligned for Ron. Or
they are aligned all against him. The voters will go for
a statist, collectivist fear-monger who promises free lunches.
like Dr. Pauls got as much chance of getting elected as you
do and Slims out of town. But can his campaign not
still do some good, shifting the debate? If the Republicans see
themselves being outflanked on the right, might he put some spine
in to them and make them actually embrace free markets in deed,
not only in word? They might stop walking in lockstep with the Democrats,
chasing after the middle
Sure, he might change the nature of the debate a bit and
that would be a very good thing. It would offer a bully pulpit for
education, which was another major reason why I supported Harry
Browne. But none of that will change the way the vast majority of
either the electorate or the politicians think or vote. The fact
is that politicians all know they wont get reelected if they
force the U.S. to bite the painful bullet it must, if its
to begin a real recovery.
In other words,
what needs to be done a large-scale firing of government
employees, the abolition of most agencies, reinstitution of a sound
currency, default on many or most government obligations, radical
cuts in spending, and disbanding of the military-industrial complex
would itself bring on chaos at this point. Anybody who did
it would be branded a traitor, or worse. So theyll continue
kicking the can down the road. A controlled demolition of todays
totally corrupt system is the best thing that could happen. Instead
well get an uncontrolled collapse later.
were back to there being no way out.
Yes Im afraid so. Even if friendly aliens landed on
the roof of the White House and gave us some magic technology that
would feed, house and clothe everyone for free
would destroy the native economies worldwide. What would people
do all day if there was no point in any work because everything
was free? Even if the entire population could become artists or
something, the dislocation would be so massive, suicides would probably
become the leading cause of death for whole generations. Would any
ethical aliens do that?
Actually, if Ray
Kurzweil is right about The Singularity, thats more or
less what will happen. But thats a subject for another conversation.
So, okay, okay.
There are no friendly aliens, and The Singularity isnt going
to happen this election cycle. There is no way to avert the train
wreck now. The plus-51% of the population on the dole alone guarantees
it thats the point of no return. Not to mention the
failure of the government education system, and many other factors
weve discussed before. I just dont see any way out;
its got to get worse before it gets better. And it likely
wont get better until the present system implodes.
In that regard,
Im happy hes running because his campaign will almost
certainly get a lot more attention than it ever has before. As above,
that could educate a lot of people, because Ron will speak on principle,
and about things that matter. The fact he cant win is actually
a good thing. I pity the poor fool whos in office as we come
out of the eye of the hurricane were now in. Whoever is in
office will be blamed, even though the collapse will be the consequence
of decades of mismanagement.
the ideas out into TV-land is a good thing. Come the crunch, the
more people whove heard Rons free-market ideas, the
better the odds of things looking up after the crash.
I said theres
no way Ron will win or prevent the deepening of The Greater Depression
were slipping into I didnt say it wouldnt
do any good.
I wish him
the greatest success.
Well, if you think its a good idea, why dont you run?
Go wash your mouth out. Ron does not believe the state is necessarily
unethical. I do. Big difference; I cant be a part of a coercive
system, even if I tell myself Im only doing it to do good.
I know where the road paved with good intentions leads to. Okay
Sorry, nothing new there. The sad fact as I see it
that a man of character like Ron Paul can never get elected in our
current system is just par for the dismal course the U.S. has been
locked into for some time.
But just because
the U.S. is radar-locked on self-destruction, that doesnt
mean our readers need to be. They can and should be doing everything
possible to protect themselves. I dont want to sound like
a broken record, but I honestly believe the best possible thing
for readers to do is to live, breathe, eat, drink, and sleep the
mantra: Liquidate, Consolidate, Create, Speculate and diversify
your political risk.
public service announcement from Casey Research: No need to go down
with the ship. I actually got an email from a reader who has posted
your mantra on the wall in front of her desk. Im glad some
people are listening especially those I consider friends.
You sent me that one very gratifying. I can only hope shes
not the only one. But its more than just not needing to go
down with the ship; the world will need sane people with capital
at their disposal to help lead the way after the crash.
pretty apocalyptic, Doug.
You know I call em like I see em. But a crisis presents
as much opportunity as danger if youre prepared for
it. So I like to look on the bright side. And Im not urging
anyone to become a hermit in Idaho Im simply urging
fiscal caution of the sort that is always a good idea anyway, just
more so now.
good balance sheet never goes out of style, eh?
Exactly. Same goes for individuals as companies and governments
too, as will become all too painfully clear to most thinking people
think thats enough for this time. Ive got rocks to kick
in West Africas greenstone belts this week, and it wont
help if you depress the heck out of me.
Look on the bright side: you and many people you like will be better
off than 99% of the worlds population coming out of the crash.
Most of the wealth will still be here its just going
to change ownership. That could have positive social implications,
is a thought
if the nation-state is the past, and the future
belongs to phyles, we sure want to encourage the best phyles
possible to form.
Ill leave you with your happy thought then. All you need is
pixie dust, and youre all set.
to you, thats on the way too, come the nanotechnology revolution.
There, you see, there always is a bright side to look on.
Doug. Well talk next week.
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