Honoring George Resch

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Here’s Ron Paul’s Congressional Statement Honoring George Resch:

Mr. Speaker, I rise to honor H. George Resch, who passed away last week. George was a lifelong champion of liberty, sound money, and peace who played a key role in the development of the modern liberty movement. I was privileged to know George as a business associate and a friend.

George was one of the liberty movement’s leading experts on the dangers of government control of education. One of his most significant contributions to libertarian scholarship was an essay titled “Human Variations and Individuality, “published in the 1974 anthology The Twelve Year Sentence. In this essay, George convincingly challenged the popular idea that government must control education in order to ensure “equality of opportunity.” As George made clear, because all people differ in their abilities and interests, the only way the state can ensure “equal opportunities” is to prevent any student from excelling.

As important as George’s scholarship on educational freedom was, his main contribution to the liberty movement was his work supporting libertarian scholars– especially younger scholars, who often lacked opportunities available to their peers who were willing to promote statist academic orthodoxy.

George began supporting promising libertarian scholars in the 1950s, when he met Professor F.A. “Baldy” Harper at Robert LeFevre’s Freedom School. Harper immediately recognized George’s qualities of mind and strong character, and eventually recruited George to work with the William Volker Fund. At the time, the Volker Fund was one of the few organizations dedicated to the development and promotion of libertarian ideas.

At the Volker Fund, George worked with many leading libertarians thinkers of the day to identify books and authors worthy of promotion and support. One of the people George worked with was Murray Rothbard, Ludwig von Mises’s heir and the founder of the modern libertarian movement. George and Murray’s friendship began when they discussed monopolies. George had heard that Rothbard was developing a theory of antitrust more “radical” then Mises, and wanted to learn more. The conversation resulted in a friendship that lasted until Murray passed away in 1995.

In 1961, George helped Professor Harper create the Institute for Humane Studies (IHS). IHS’s goal was to expand the Volker Fund’s mission of promoting libertarian scholarship by identifying and supporting young people with the potential to become leading libertarian scholars. George played a major role in helping to sustain and grow IHS in its early years. In fact, it is not an exaggeration to say that Baldy Harper never would have gotten IHS off the ground without George’s help. The thousands of young people who have been introduced to the ideas of liberty through IHS’s programs, as well as those who received academic and career support from IHS, all owe a debt of gratitude to George Resch.

In 1965, George helped his friends Murray Rothbard and Leonard Liggio publish Left and Right, a journal dedicated to preserving the “Old Right’s” limited government and anti-imperialist ideals. As the title suggests, Left and Right also sought to create an alliance with the anti-imperialist and anti-corporatist elements found on the left. Left and Right was published until 1968. However, its influence is still felt today. The seeds that Rothbard, Liggio, and Resch planted are at last bearing fruit as a new left-right coalition has embraced the ideas Left and Rightchampioned. This coalition of libertarians, liberals, and constitutional conservatives is working together to oppose militarism, protect civil liberties, end corporate welfare, and reduce the power of the Federal Reserve.
George also had a successful private-sector career working with Burt Blumert at Camino Coins. Burt and George truly were kindred souls, both tireless promoters and supporters of the ideas of liberty. Burt and George made Camino one of the country’s top coin businesses.

George also worked with Burt at the Center for Libertarian Studies. The Center published the Journal of Libertarian Studies (among many other projects), the first academic journal devoted to the ideas of liberty. George also helped Burt and Lew Rockwell establish and develop Lewrockwell.com, the world’s most-visited libertarian web site.

When I left Congress in 1984, Burt and George assisted me in establishing Ron Paul Coins. I worked with Burt and George until I returned to Congress in 1996 and had to end my involvement in the company. Getting to know George was one of the most enjoyable aspects of working in the coin business. You could not ask for a better business partner or friend than George. He never treated anyone with anything less than complete respect. He had a wonderful understated sense of humor, and like our mutual friends Murray Rothbard and Burt Blumert, a Menckenesque appreciation of the absurdities of modern American politics. George also never lost his ability to spot potential young leaders or counsel, assist, and spend time talking to young people interested in advancing liberty. My Legislative Director, for example, benefited from George’s advice and friendship.

Mr. Speaker, George Resch’s many friends in the liberty movement are deeply saddened by his passing. We are also grateful for all he did to build the liberty movement, and for the example he set for all of us who continue his work of advancing freedom.

10:02 am on December 28, 2012