In his “Farewell Address,” Ron Paul identified the problem we face. The whole world faces it: the commitment to state salvation. The state is seen as the agency of social healing. The special interest groups take advantage of this. They demand federal subsidies and bailouts. They get them.
The public knows this, but voters do not rebel. They don’t know what to put in its place. The solution is to shrink the state. But they are afraid of liberty. So, they get ripped off.
The solution is education, meaning an intellectual awakening. Here is what he said.
Without an intellectual awakening, the turning point will be driven by economic law. A dollar crisis will bring the current out-of-control system to its knees.
If it’s not accepted that big government, fiat money, ignoring liberty, central economic planning, welfarism, and warfarism caused our crisis we can expect a continuous and dangerous march toward corporatism and even fascism with even more loss of our liberties. Prosperity for a large middle class though will become an abstract dream.
This continuous move is no different than what we have seen in how our financial crisis of 2008 was handled. Congress first directed, with bipartisan support, bailouts for the wealthy. Then it was the Federal Reserve with its endless quantitative easing. If at first it doesn’t succeed try again; QE1, QE2, and QE3 and with no results we try QE indefinitely—that is until it too fails. There’s a cost to all of this and let me assure you delaying the payment is no longer an option. The rules of the market will extract its pound of flesh and it won’t be pretty.
Do most voters understand this today? They trust the federal government. Yet they know it is not trustworthy. They know that FEMA’s response to Katrina is the best we can hope for. But they don’t know what to trust in its place. The government wins by default.
If the underlying cause of the crisis is not understood, we cannot solve our problems. The issues of warfare, welfare, deficits, inflationism, corporatism, bailouts, and authoritarianism cannot be ignored. By only expanding these policies, we cannot expect good results.
We will not get good results.
So, we will get bad results. But this can be our opportunity to educate people. This will be our opportunity to say: “We knew it was coming. We said so. We explained why. It’s time to re-think the welfare state.”
Let us not be pessimistic, he warned.
The current crisis elicits a lot of pessimism. And the pessimism adds to less confidence in the future. The two feed on themselves, making our situation worse.