It is my belief that of late, due to certain statements I have made regarding Ron Paul, that I may have distanced myself from some people, or at least offended them. Of all the candidates who have yet to toss their name into the ring for President, Ron Paul is arguably the best. I have questions regarding his position on a couple issues, illegal aliens being one of them, but if I had to choose between him and any other candidate, I would most likely cast my vote for Ron Paul.
However, with that being said, I honestly don’t think that were Ron Paul to find himself in the Oval Office that much would change. It’s not that Ron Paul may not have his heart in the right place, it’s just that I believe that America is no longer capable of change for the better.
When I was much younger I used to read a lot of science fiction books. One of my favorites were the Foundation Trilogy by Isaac Asimov. In the first book of the series, Foundation, you are introduced to a character named Hari Seldon, a mathematics professor at Streeling University on the planet of Trantor. Seldon had developed psychohistory, a fictional science by which, using history, sociology, and mathematical statistics, he could make general predictions about the future behavior of large groups of people.
While it may have been only a work of fiction, I believe that if one understands human nature they may be able to predict how people would react in certain situations. I think our founding fathers were very astute in understanding human nature. Did not Ben Franklin say that we had a republic, if we could but keep it?
Our founders were not perfect men, nobody is. But they did all come together at a unique period in time to create a system of government in which, as George Mason once said, “…- that all power was originally lodged in, and consequently is derived from, the people.” However, for us to retain that power we must, first, understand what limits the Constitution imposed upon our government, and second, keep a watchful eye upon their every action.
While people are once again beginning to notice that the things that their government is doing are not in their best interest, for the longest time the people of this country have remained apathetic and complacent; concerned more with self-gratification and entertainment. So now, will this awakening of the people be too little, too late? Has the damage done to our republic been too extensive to be repaired?
You see, that is my main problem with Ron Paul. He is only one man, and were he to get elected he would have only four years to undo at least a centuries worth of damage. You see, if you think about human nature, the American people have very little patience; they want results, and they want them yesterday. Would the American people have the patience to wait for four years, or possibly even a decade, for things to start improving before just going back to Republican versus Democrat at the polls? Also, are the America people willing to make the sacrifices needed to restore our republic to its former glory? These are questions that I have not found satisfactory answers to among the fervent supporters of Ron Paul. I see a whole lot of people placing all their hopes and dreams upon a man who speaks of liberty and fiscal conservatism, but have they really thought things out, or are they going to sit back and wait for their hero to work wonders upon a system that, from my perspective, is on its death bed?
Ron Paul certainly talks a good talk, and much of what he says is based firmly upon Constitutional principles, but can those principles save this nation in 2012? Maybe had he been elected in 1913, prior to the passage of the Federal Reserve Act, or even shortly thereafter, he might have been able to avert the disaster we now face. But if people are honest with themselves, they may find themselves hard pressed to see how he can avert the coming collapse of our economy, and our nation.
Let me provide you with an example of what I’m talking about. Hopefully the debacle that was our government making fools of themselves over the raising of the debt ceiling is still fresh in most people’s minds.
After days of heated discussions, in a bipartisan effort, (God how I hate that term), our government came to an agreement to raise the debt ceiling, while cutting spending. For the most part, the American people were satisfied that disaster was averted and our government did not shut down, or default upon its obligations. But what really happened? The following data is a quick snapshot of our government’s finances:
• The U.S. government takes in roughly $2,170,000,000,000 in tax revenue
• The Federal budget is: $3,820,000,000,000
• The government is spending $1,650,000,000,000 more than it takes in from taxes, the deficit
• Our current National debt stands at: $14,675,000,000,000
• The government made cuts to the budget to the tune of: $ 38,500,000,000
Those numbers are a bit intimidating, so let’s delete eight zeros and pretend this is a snapshot of a typical family’s annual expenses:
• Annual family income: $21,700
• Money the family spent: $38,200
• New debt on the credit card: $16,500
• Outstanding balance on the credit card: $142,710
• Total budget cuts: $385
So, if you add all those zeros back, our government did not cut that much at all out of their annual budget, did they? For the average person a $38 billion cut in expenses is beyond our understanding, but in terms of trillions of dollars in expenditures it is merely a drop in the bucket.
I think everyone, including those who do not support Ron Paul, are in agreement that government needs to curb its spending, but where, and by how much? There are many breakdowns of how and where our government spends the money it both takes in and it borrows. According to some estimates Social Security accounts for roughly 21% of all the money our government spends. Medicare and Medicaid consume another 20% of the money spent by our government, while unemployment and welfare account for another 11%. Tack on the budget for the Department of defense, at 16% and you can account for nearly 70% of all our governments spending.
Just for you edification, from the data I was taking my numbers from, only 8.5% goes towards paying off the national debt, which now stands at $14.6 trillion, that’s fourteen with twelve zeroes!.
If you go back to my typical family and their annual expenses, they cut $385 out of their annual spending, but that still leaves them still spending more than $16,000 a year more than they take in. So, our government is still spending a whole lot more than they are taking in, and with our national debt limit having just been raised, at this rate they will soon find themselves in the situation where they will have to raise it once again. How long can this madness go on before our government collapses, and our economy goes with it?
So, say Ron Paul does get elected, what exactly is he going to cut to reduce our governments out of control spending? Is he going to cut some of the $695 billion from the Social Security budget? Or maybe take a chunk out of the $453 billion spent on Medicare and the $290 billion spent on Medicaid? He could save us $170 billion annually if he ended the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, but that would still not be enough to reduce our deficit spending.
To pay off our national debt Ron Paul would have to stop making Social Security payments for roughly 7 years, and channel all that money towards the debt. Or maybe cut Medicare spending for 30 years and put all those funds towards the national debt. You get the picture now, don’t you? If Ron Paul is to do anything at all about reducing our national debt, HE IS GOING TO HAVE TO TOUCH ENTITLEMENTS!!!! And let me tell you, the minute he does his approval ratings will tank.
In our nation’s current state of affairs, where he to touch any of the other programs, from education to transportation, the states themselves would collapse, as they are teetering on the verge of collapse already. You see, what has happened in this country over the past century or so is that the states have given up their sovereignty and become reliant upon federal funding for matters that should have been handled within the states themselves. On top of that, the people have lost their self-reliance and have become addicted to government subsidies. Take funding away from the states and they will collapse, pissing off millions of people who rely upon those services. Take away people’s entitlements and the outrage will be heard on the planet Mars.
That is why I don’t hold out any hope, that even should he become our next president, Ron Paul will be able to save our nation from the coming economic meltdown on its horizon. It has nothing at all to do whether I like the guy or if I hate his guts. Electing Ron Paul is akin to putting antibiotic ointment upon a cancerous tumor, it isn’t going to do any good at this stage of the game.
As I said earlier, our nation’s founders were very astute men who understood human nature. They had the vision to see what would become of our republic if the people became unconcerned with the affairs of their government.
As Samuel Adams said, “It will bring an everlasting mark of infamy on the present generation, enlightened as it is, if we should suffer them to be wrested from us by violence without a struggle, or to be cheated out of them by the artifices of false and designing men.”
Upon his return from France in 1802, Thomas Paine wrote a series of letters to the citizens of the United States. From his first letter I quote, “But a faction, acting in disguise, was rising in America; they had lost sight of first principles. They were beginning to contemplate government as a profitable monopoly, and the people as hereditary property.” And from his second letter, which is even more prophetic, “If ever America lose sight of this principle, she will no longer be the land of liberty. The father will become the assassin of the rights of the son, and his descendants be a race of slaves.”
The people of this country have become so dependent upon, and subservient to the government that they have forgotten one vital principle, that we are the boss in this country, that our government works for us, not over us.
In 1764 James Otis, in The Rights of the British Colonies Asserted and Proved, wrote, “I say supreme absolute power is originally and ultimately in the people; and they never did in fact freely, nor can they rightfully make an absolute, unlimited renunciation of this divine right.” Almost a century later, in a letter to A. Stevenson, James Madison stated, “…the Government holds its powers by a charter granted to it by the people…”
Finally, in a warning to the people, both who lived during the time our Constitution was ratified, and for future generations, Daniel Webster gave us a warning, “Hold on, my friends, to the Constitution and to the Republic for which it stands. Miracles do not cluster and what has happened once in 6,000 years, may not happen again.”
Well my friends, we have let that miracle slip through our hands. We have not become familiar with what that document says, and we have allowed our government to become the sole interpreters of their own power. In plain English, they have amassed powers never intended they assume, and in so doing have brought this nation to the brink of ruin.
Now, a number of people are beginning to awaken to this fact, and these people are placing all their hopes and dreams upon one man to pull us back from the brink of ruin and restore what once was.
I am reminded of the scene in the film the Matrix when the character Cypher asks Neo if Morpheus has told him why he was released from the Matrix, that Neo was the One who would end the war with the machines. When Neo answers to the affirmative, Cypher states, “What a mind job!” I wonder, does Ron Paul even realize what kind of weight he will be bearing on his shoulders should he become our next president?
I may not be a Hari Seldon, or a Thomas Jefferson, but I do understand people. I realize that it will take years, if not generations, to wean them off government subsidies, to instill in them the desire to uphold the Constitution at all costs. Unfortunately, I do not believe that this nation has that much time left. That is why I don’t hold out any hope that Ron Paul will be able to save America from itself. It has nothing at all to do with whether I dislike the man or not. I hope I have made myself clearer now to those whom I may have offended with my earlier comments regarding Dr. Paul.