Mark Spitznagel: How could our utterly failed public education system not have something to do with today’s complacency? Of course our system requires a thinking electorate, one that can see through the central planners’ economic mysticism you mentioned. As you know, Ludwig von Mises argued that all governments—even dictatorships—ultimately rest on public opinion. We can complain about the politicians and central bankers, but ultimately the only reason they can get away with these outrageous and wealth-destroying policies like corporate bailouts and asset inflation is that the public assumes they do something good. With our current state of economic ignorance and political apathy among the general public, we’re left with the lowest common denominator of plundering—not only of ourselves, but especially of those who are most powerless: future generations who, sadly, cannot yet vote. When you think about it, this is a huge burden on an electorate. Would you agree?
Ron Paul: Definitely. It’s a safe bet that the quality of education in this country is inversely proportional to the increase in the Federal government’s involvement in it. Government schools have a predictable agenda: justifying the government and its programs. I was warned never to try to educate in a campaign yet that was always my goal. The understanding that public opinion is crucial to all political change recognizes that the intellectual leaders are key to a country’s future, both good and bad. But for the most part politicians aren’t interested in changing people’s minds. Their concern is to put their finger up to the wind to see which way it’s blowing and accommodate. I have always had an interest in working to change public opinion regarding the proper role for government in a free society, such as my efforts with my own FREE Foundation for 38 years and currently with the Ron Paul Curriculum for K-12.