Ron Paul’s Farewell Speech (Video)

Congressman Ron Paul has delivered his final address to the United States Congress, and of course he hit on several of his favorite themes during a 48-minute speech (part of the transcript is below):

Ron Paul: This may well be the last time I speak on the House Floor.  At the end of the year I’ll leave Congress after 23 years in office over a 36 year period.  My goals in 1976 were the same as they are today:  promote peace and prosperity by a strict adherence to the principles of individual liberty.

It was my opinion, that the course the U.S. embarked on in the latter part of the 20th Century would bring us a major financial crisis and engulf us in a foreign policy that would overextend us and undermine our national security.

To achieve the goals I sought, government would have had to shrink in size and scope, reduce spending, change the monetary system, and reject the unsustainable costs of policing the world and expanding the American Empire.

The problems seemed to be overwhelming and impossible to solve, yet from my view point, just following the constraints placed on the federal government by the Constitution would have been a good place to start.

How Much Did I Accomplish?

In many ways, according to conventional wisdom, my off-and-on career in Congress, from 1976 to 2012, accomplished very little.  No named legislation, no named federal buildings or highways—thank goodness.  In spite of my efforts, the government has grown exponentially, taxes remain excessive, and the prolific increase of incomprehensible regulations continues.  Wars are constant and pursued without Congressional declaration, deficits rise to the sky, poverty is rampant and dependency on the federal government is now worse than any time in our history.

All this with minimal concerns for the deficits and unfunded liabilities that common sense tells us cannot go on much longer.  A grand, but never mentioned, bipartisan agreement allows for the well-kept secret that keeps the spending going.  One side doesn’t give up one penny on military spending, the other side doesn’t give up one penny on welfare spending, while both sides support the bailouts and subsidies for the banking and  corporate elite.  And the spending continues as the economy weakens and the downward spiral continues.   As the government continues fiddling around, our liberties and our wealth burn in the flames of a foreign policy that makes us less safe.

The major stumbling block to real change in Washington is the total resistance to admitting that the country is broke. This has made compromising, just to agree to increase spending, inevitable since neither side has any intention of cutting spending.

The country and the Congress will remain divisive since there’s no “loot left to divvy up.”

Without this recognition the spenders in Washington will continue the march toward a fiscal cliff much bigger than the one anticipated this coming January.

I have thought a lot about why those of us who believe in liberty, as a solution, have done so poorly in convincing others of its benefits.  If liberty is what we claim it is- the principle that protects all personal, social and economic decisions necessary for maximum prosperity and the best chance for peace- it should be an easy sell.  Yet, history has shown that the masses have been quite receptive to the promises of authoritarians which are rarely if ever fulfilled.

Authoritarianism vs. Liberty

If authoritarianism leads to poverty and war and less freedom for all individuals and is controlled by rich special interests, the people should be begging for liberty.  There certainly was a strong enough sentiment for more freedom at the time of our founding that motivated those who were willing to fight in the revolution against the powerful British government.

Continue reading “Ron Paul’s Farewell Address to Congress”

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  • http://www.facebook.com/nick.margerrison Nick Margerrison

    Blimey, 23 years!

  • Anarchy Pony

    So long and thanks for all the memes.

  • http://twitter.com/DanielReasor Daniel Reasor

    A pretty standard performance for Paul: moments of sanity, such as when he targets the TSA, the surveillance state, and defense spending in general, but they’re small fragments floating in a broth of bitter anger that not enough Americans do without, that not enough Americans fall through the cracks. Four minutes in, he’s complaining that the people don’t love liberty enough to dismantle the safety net. So long, Ron Paul, thanks for the one bill you managed to get passed over the entire course of your career, and thank God for inflatable fiat currency. You old buzzard.

    • saint_al

      The Libertarians’ near-worship of Ayn Rand is damned baffling (naturally, it’s where Rand Paul gets his moniker). Quite telling is that Paul gets to speak at length to a mostly empty hall. ‘Old Man Yells At Chair’? It’s a hit-and-miss performance.
      / voted for G. Johnson, but did so while holding my nose; couldn’t stomach Robamney. Johnson also advocates privatized prisons; seems to be the candidates’ thing to do these days.

      • mannyfurious

        Fuck off. You act like you’re so special because you see right through “Robamney” and yet you voted for a mutant like Johnson. You’re no better than anybody else, especially when Stein and Alexander and even Rosanne fucking Barr were on the ballot. You fucking twat.

        Don’t be fooled by the Libertarian spin machine—

        http://exiledonline.com/from-the-lost-file-libertarian-party-vice-presidential-nominee-james-gray-is-a-closetcase-republican-and-a-private-kangaroo-court-judge-for-hire/

        • Apathesis

          Jil Stein was clearly a better option than Gary Johnson.

        • Anarchy Pony

          Another Exhole! Right on!

          • mannyfurious

            Hell yes. But they’ve been pissing me off lately with their lack of content.

          • Anarchy Pony

            Yeah, it’s been pretty slow lately.

        • Roger Mexico

          Feeling a little paranoid, Altair?

          • mannyfurious

            If there was little to no evidence, it would be paranoia. Maybe you’re not paranoid enough….

        • Calypso_1

          Good link.

  • DeepCough

    Ron Paul: He wasted his energy and idealism in the Republican Party

  • Hadrian999

    I wonder if he’ll start a newsletter?

    • http://www.facebook.com/eric.fischer.73 Eric Fischer

      If the price is right. free market, baby. can’t beat it.

      • kowalityjesus

        You kidding? He received tens of millions over the course of the campaign… He’s still got a massive fanbase, though not the kind to cash out; we are talking about a man who not only didn’t ever vote for his own payraise, but actually refunded to the treasury the money he felt was not deserved.

        • Jin The Ninja

          in the name of st. paul, i pray, amen.

          • kowalityjesus

            you shall know a good man by his works.

          • Jin The Ninja

            or in this case his complete inefficacy.

          • kowalityjesus

            The greatest Jihad is speaking truth to unjust power. -Muhammad …millions of Americans rallied and inspired in a movement that will live beyond Paul’s tenure in office? That doesn’t cut it?

          • Hadrian999

            he was a safety valve to keep that “movement” inside the republican party

          • kowalityjesus

            wth does that mean? were people going to invent a 21st century Bull Moose party? Do I need to remind you how unilaterally unsuccessful 3rd parties have been for the last 150 years?

          • Hadrian999

            do i need to remind you how what happened to ron paul when he tried to work inside the 2 party system….I hope not it was only months ago

          • kowalityjesus

            erm, yes I remember. But if he had had another 20 million dollars or whatever he could have pulled a TR and gotten on the ballot! Also, I think trying and failing to get an active minority with a clear message and obvious clout to work within the GOP calls attention to the clear injustices inherent in the system…..for the people paying attention.

          • Hadrian999

            do you honestly believe that someone who doesn’t do the parties work is getting a party nomination. there is a reason he didn’t have enough money to compete. he was frozen out of every aspect of the process that matters. he’s like the cute little mutt that the kids like but gets locked in the bathroom when grown ups come over for dinner.

          • kowalityjesus

            Interesting and apt metaphor, but if we let this kind of cynicism take over any prospect we have for change, the attitude will become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

            That is why, imo, Ron Paul kex a$$.

          • Jin The Ninja

            i agree with Hadrian. Not only that but inspire to do what? Regularly cite the the ayn rand books they haven’t read or listen to Alex Jones more than once per week?

          • kowalityjesus

            Who would be calling these guys out on there psychotically retarded plan to debase the US currency and hand sovereignty to the UN? Does anyone else see something wrong with the US being equal to the rest of the world in the money it spends making war machines to murder people? How much shit do you have to eat before you can’t respect a man for wanting to end war?

          • Jin The Ninja

            i’m far more anti-imperialist than RP, i’m also anti-exceptionalist. the UN is a global body of governance, which in theory supposes no one nation has domination over another. in some ways, hypothetically the world would be so lucky if the US ceded control of ANYTHING to the UN. i also know the anti-UN rhetoric is largely alex jones paranoia. anything else?

          • kowalityjesus

            Meh, I have a hard time understanding anyone who not only dislikes America but also ignores history to the point that he would rather banish the constitution and cede sovereignty to an international body than call attention to real problems that will obviously destroy the framework of the US constitution in the foreseeable future. I suppose I should just go with the flow, we are about 90% there.

          • Jin The Ninja

            ignore history? no, dude that’s you and your veneration of a republican document codified a couple hundred years ago by white, slave owning, male artistos of british descent and calling that ‘liberty.’

          • kowalityjesus

            yeah right, it is widely considered the greatest governmental document ever created, a model for other governments around the world since its creation. Always contentious, never insightful. Thanks.

          • Jin The Ninja

            yes, the US did promote western liberal democracy in certain countries as long as the us profited from them, but the us also promoted and installed dozens of juntas and regimes. i know your veneration of it parallels religious, but there is no need to exaggerate its importance in the REST of the world. it also codified disenfranchisement for the vast millions of slaves and plebs. but facts oh facts.

          • kowalityjesus

            I was thinking inspiration of French revolution and an EXPLICIT model for the German Bundesrepublik, as well as a framework for secular governments around the world.

            The machinations and nation building of the CIA and corporations are imo a cancer on the republic, one that would have met its demise under a Raul administration. I don’t know if you heard about this, but an open mic during a press conference for the pentagon a reporter was heard saying “see this room? two thirds of us laid off when Ron Paul is president.” This was before the revolution had been successfully put down by intrigue and design.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=742104313 Adam Goodwin

            Sorry, but did you just refer to systems of ‘representative democracy’ as a revolution? Am I missing something? I thought this was DISinfo.com. I didn’t think people on here were…ummm….fucking retarded enough to believe in liberalism. You know all of the ‘isms’ are a lie, right? You know that government (representative or otherwise) are just under the umbrella of the money system, right? You know it’s actually _you_ that makes up your own social system (i.e. how you choose to interact with others), and not some ‘ism’ that decides how you interact with others? You understand what ideology means, right?

          • kowalityjesus

            oh gee thanks, thanks for enlightening me. Is there any point to what you said? Try to have a goal in mind when writing a comment.

          • Jin The Ninja

            if you didn’t get the point in adam’s comment, it was because you missed it, rather than it being non existant.

          • kowalityjesus

            I think it was more that he is not skilled and/or didn’t care enough to make a real point. Just spout a bunch of truthiness and expect me to be moved. what a tool.

          • Jin The Ninja

            when ron paul gets elected through the machinations of the republican party to which he voluntarily belonged, let me know.

          • Calypso_1

            Times change.

            “Among the world’s democracies constitutional similarity to the United States has clearly gone into free fall. Over the 1960s and 1970s, democratic constitutions as a whole became more similar to the U.S. Constitution, only to reverse course in the 1980s and 1990s.”

            “The turn of the twenty-first century, however, saw the beginning of a steep plunge that continues through the most recent years for which we have data, to the point that the constitutions of the world’s democracies are, on average, less similar to the U.S. Constitution now than they were at the end of World War II.”

            New York University Law Review

            http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1923556

  • Name

    Freedom? Self-Reliance? Ewwwww!!!!!!

    • Anarchy Pony

      Yeah, because you can always take everything at face value! You don’t ever have to read into what the person thinks constitutes freedom!

      • kowalityjesus

        yo hater, come up with something better and we will listen. Until then, RP kicks the ass of all parties available.

        • Anarchy Pony

          There are dozens of better alternatives than the neo-feudalism that is the end result of Paul’s political philosophy.

          • kowalityjesus

            name one politician as worthy. I need someone else to rally behind, now that my man is retiring.

          • Jin The Ninja

            the entire point of (true) libertarianism, is that there is no need to “rally behind” a leader.

          • kowalityjesus

            barf, you guys are such hopeless haters. Why do I bother?

          • Anarchy Pony

            Whatever you say, troll.

          • Jin The Ninja

            why not instead respond to the substance of what i said? you’re not trying very hard.

          • kowalityjesus

            m***********r, why don’t YOU respond to the substance of MY comment? Give me a politician who is morally and/or substantially superior to Ron Paul since he is so unworthy of your praise, and a politician about which I can say “‘Murca is not lost.” OR are you too lazy and insubstantial to do anything but naysay?

            You treat Paul like he is moot, but all I have ever got about him is whining, so I maintain my support. Why is nearly everyone on the internet incapable of the format “I understand why you find [noun] worthwhile, but [noun]’s failings are this”

          • Jin The Ninja

            you missed the mark by a fair mile. and as for nay saying, i didn’t include any particular criticism in my post. can you cite to me where you found it?

            libertarianism, in its essential form, is opposed to leaders. however, if one was to respond in the exact frame of your question, i would first reiterate that political leadership is problematic at best. however, i might say Bernie Sanders, but i prefer Nader, Stein, Barr or any number of the unelected ‘politicians’ who pose an genuine opposition to the machinations of empire.

            and by the way, if you’re going to call someone a motherfucker, you might as well s-p-e-l-l it correctly. unless of course you’re trying to protect my delicate sensibilities, and i can assure you there is no need to do that.

          • kowalityjesus

            The criticism of Ron Paul is ambient and pervasive, but in this case it was specifically from Anarchy Pony, when he criticized Paul’s concept of freedom. At which I preached, ‘if you don’t have anything nice to say then don’t say anything at all. By the way do you have anything nice to say about anyone else?’ Which you have finally answered.

            I don’t want to be the ‘one’ with the pottymouth, even though that is what occurred to me when I read your comment. Maybe I want to be the one with the ‘polysynth’ though. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aw-6riBuD5s&feature=autoplay&list=PLNmRWFRTxqO0VmFr49V7WWYqx5zrSEvDG&playnext=1

          • Jin The Ninja

            pervasive. yes, i would agree with that. and quite often substantial and legitimate.

            actually, you called ‘us’ “hopeless haters.” there is absolutely nothing ‘preachy’ about ad hominem. it is interesting, however, that is how you see yourself.

            you directed and replied to MY comment, NOT anarchy’s. do you maintain i’ve written any undue criticism directed at ron paul? no? then apologise.

            and you are the one with the who initiated expletive name-calling, no need to feign high minded rhetorical analysis.

          • kowalityjesus

            Yes I remember now that I can always rely on you to be contentious, if yet boring. It is your prerogative whether you want to bunker up behind a position, and proudly tally your enemy’s faults and concessions while ignoring his accolades and retorts, but that is not my form of entertainment.

            Your comment was a response to my response to Anarchy Pony’s comment, therefore you were interring yourself in our debate where it was facile for you to realize the nature of our conflict. While you did not explicitly negate my position, you ignored the command/request I set forth in a tangential manner, which prompted me to label your position as negatively ensconsed without hope of leverage.

            My command is one that I have iterated at least 3 other times in Ron Paul forae, to lower your shields and let loose a positive comment about Paul or someone who you thought was better than Paul. It is a genuine curiosity of mine because from my perspective there is not a more clean, visible anti-authoritarian in Congress. It is a genuine curiosity of mine why so many of those on this site find themselves incapable of saying anything positive about Paul, although it seems the admins and contributors at least have a respect for his relevance.

            You finally complied with my request 2 comments later, and I thank you for that. Therefore, I apologize for presuming you to be a hopeless hater, even though I strongly question whether you would have bothered negating such a strong prevailing general attitude unless I had first accused you of holding it.

          • Jin The Ninja

            firstly, i don’t appreciate being referred to as if you somehow know me. don’t be overly familiar, it’s not endearing. you’ve been posting on this site for what, 2 months?

            secondly, you can obfuscate the point i made all you want, but the truth is, ron paul is not radical he is a REPUBLICAN. major party last time i checked. remember subversive is NOT the status quo. up is not down, and right is not ‘left.’ also genuine libertarians, not fakes with a republican hat, don’t believe in leaders. true for libertarians throughout history.

            lastly, you are correct about something, i am ALWAYS opposed to stupid.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=742104313 Adam Goodwin

            This conversation is probably over now, but can I chime in? I come from a ‘libertarian’ perspective, but in the original sense: i.e. Kropotkin’s ‘anarcho-communism’. There are several things to consider about the unique criticisms leveled by Paul against the current system. First and foremost is his critique of the monetary system–while his alternative would introduce competitive currencies, blah, blah, to phase out the Fed’s grip, it should be noted that there are an increasing number of die-hard competitive-capitalists that have taken this position in recent years (Marc Faber, Max Keiser, Peter Schiff etc.). We can’t discount this criticism, because it is important. These people are thoughtful (even if from a very classist perspective) about what’s going on, and they have awakened to the debt-slavery reality that is slowly revealing itself through the thermodynamic effects of peak oil on our so-called ‘economies’ (only a partial representation of economic activity, really). This critique can easily resonate with a much wider audience, and this is important–not because ‘electing’ an ideologue to a symbolic position like the presidency matters; but, because the very critique of the monetary system (in ANY guise) opens up the possibilities for escaping debt-slavery simply by way of realizing that we are all enslaved. It’s a self-fullfilling prophecy, in that sense, and I don’t give a shit who tells it. Just tell it. Just make it known that slavery has never ended; it’s only been diversified, remodeled, repackaged and refinished. Slavery is desirable now. ‘Own’ your own house, and car and other useless shit simply by opening up a credit line or mortgage account with imaginary money adroitly created from nothing through double-entry-bookkeeping. Capitalism came from this. This isn’t a product of capitalism. Money controls the way everyone thinks. Mix that shit up, and you got yourself a revolution.

          • Calypso_1

            Indeed, KJ is rather a johnny-come-lately to the well trodden path of Paulites that have come through these doors.

    • Andrew

      Abstractions.

  • Apathesis

    Do you guys like ANY politicians?

    • mannyfurious

      Not to answer for anyone else, but…Bernie Sanders. And Ron Paul when he’s making sense.

      • DeepCough

        It’s funny: Bernie Sanders is an admitted socialist, and yet Republicans leave him alone.

        • mannyfurious

          Yeah, that’s kind of weird. My best guess is because it’s a combination of him not actually being a threat (he’s only one man) and also because he’s extremely popular with his constituency.

      • Apathesis

        Alright, alright. I like what I’ve seen already.

  • 1plakat

    all talk.

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