REP. PAUL: (In progress) -- have awakened, and this is just going to be the beginning of something very, very big for this country.
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Thank you. Thank you.
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You know, I know we were making progress when I realized how many people found us on the Internet. That's been very exciting. But you know, the other thing that's been tremendously exciting for me, you know, I've talked about several policies. The number-one policy, of course, is individual liberty and our Constitution. (Cheers and applause.) But you know, I've always had a deep concern about honest money. You know, the government's supposed to be there to protect honesty and money, not to destroy the money. (Cheers and applause.) But I never thought I'd see the day where we would get loud cheers on the University of Southern California and the University of Michigan when I start talking about getting rid of the Federal Reserve system.
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Hey! You've touched my heart. You've touched my heart. Great!
But you know, when I realized we were making progress, not only on the campus, but it was sort of entertaining when the students at the University of Michigan started pulling out dollar bills and lighting them up. (Laughter.) Not that I advise you to do that, you know. There is a fire code around here so be careful. But I also knew we were making progress on the money issue when we get people like Jay Leno asking about what is this business about printing too much money, you know. (Cheers and applause.)
You know, they've told me for years you should never talk about monetary policy, because it's so complex. Yeah, really complex. You print a lot of money, and it loses its value. That's really complex. (Cheers and applause.) Yeah. But guess what? They're going to have to listen to us. And you know, it's pretty obvious, it's on the news every single day. You know, the dollar's going down. The dollar is getting weaker, and we wonder what's happening. What are we going to do? Oh, let's print some more money and bail out the banks. (Audience boos.)
You know, but it is becoming an issue. Today, gold hit record highs. But they said the gold price is high, but that is not it. The gold prices always stay the same. The value of gold is steady. What happened is, you know, not too many years ago, about 100 years ago, the dollar was defined as one-twentieth of an ounce of gold. Today, it's essentially one-nine hundredth of an ounce of gold, and they wonder why the dollar is getting weak.
Anyway, this is an important issue for a great deal of reasons. But the main reason why the gold standard and gold money is so important, it restrains the government from getting too involved in the economy and around the world and fighting war. (Cheers and applause.) Every country throughout all of history has abused the monetary system in order to finance wars that are unpopular. You know, old people declare the wars, and the young people have to fight them. That's why we don't need anymore of those wars. (Audience boos.) We need to get our troops home and get back to a sensible foreign policy. (Cheers and applause.)
You know, it really frightens me about what is happening. And you know, a lot of times they will use sort of an incident to stir the people up, build up the war fever, get the people to accept this notion we have to go to war and we have to draft young people and all this. You know, this week we had a scary event. Monday morning, I believe it was, there was an announcement. There were a couple of speed boats, you know, 30-foot long. And the American government said oh, they're threatening us, we better do something about it, speed boats with, you know, submachine guns on it. But you know, this whole idea that there could be a precipitating event like that scares the living daylights out of me, because some in Congress in Washington today want to spread this war. We want to end this war, we don't want the war to spread in the Middle East. (Cheers and applause.)
You know, the other day I was on Tim Russert's program, and he asked me one, two, three questions in a row. And you know, one was a question about the CIA. And I was about half a sentence into it, and he wanted to go on to the next subject, and I said no, let me finish the sentence about the CIA. (Cheers and applause.) I'll tell you, the country does need some intelligence gathering. But what we need is a lot more intelligence in Washington interpreting the intelligence that we get. (Cheers and applause.) And we don't need anymore distortion of the CIA reports. But we don't need -- it's all right to collect intelligence, but we don't need a secretive CIA that wages war behind the scenes, picking and choosing dictators around the world, getting us into trouble. And we've been doing that for way too long. (Cheers and applause.)
You know, we're already involved in nation-building in two significant countries, which serves nothing more than to stir up more hatred toward us, so we are less free by being in those countries meddling in their affairs. (Cheers and applause.) And also, it means that there's a much greater threat to our terrorism. And someday, we'll wake this country up, and you get everybody to understand -- I believe the people are way ahead of the politicians -- and in Washington that this threat of terrorism doesn't come because we're free and prosperous. It comes because we meddle when we shouldn't be meddling. (Cheers and applause.)
And this isn't new. It was started a long time ago in 1953. Our CIA participated in the overthrow of an elected leader in Iran and put in the shah, and we've suffered consequences and continue to. We're still involved there. But what about what we're doing in Pakistan right now? We have our own CIA agents in there picking and choosing which dictator we're going to bombard with more of American dollars. I say let them declare and decide who they want to run their country. We shouldn't be telling which dictator we're going to take more of American taxpayer's money and financing them. (Cheers and applause.)
You know, and one thing with certainty, if the war spreads, they will need more men and women. That means it isn't an accident they keep the selective service on the board and that they have bills in the Congress. Let us declare that we will not accept a military draft for any of their war mongering. (Cheers and applause.)
This is coming to an end. It should come to an end, because we act wisely and have proper government and have the proper people in Washington. But it will end, because we can't afford it. Great empires, great nations succumb to the temptation to spread themselves too far. They are never conquered militarily, hardly ever at least. The Soviet Union came down not with a military confrontation but by an economic weakness. And that is what we're facing today. That is what the weak dollar is telling us today that we cannot finance this. But what we need to do is come up wisely and say look, let's not wait for a catastrophic economic event. Let's come home and save the money! (Cheers and applause.)
We spend nearly $1 trillion a year with our foreign empire around the world, money we don't have. The only way we can finance it currently is we're financing it by borrowing from China.
I think this -- (audience boos) -- let us end the days where we are dependent on China for our own financing. We don't need that. (Cheers and applause.) But if we would do this wisely, actually we could have a transition period where we can take care of those who are dependent on the programs that shouldn't have existed in the first place, but we don't need to put people out in the street. But if we continue to do this, the people who are barely hanging on will be out in the street, because our dollar is going down in value, and no matter how much you try to keep up with it, if you have lack of productivity and lack of prosperity, just creating new money just makes the problem that much worse.
Our seniors, the people who are in retirement now, their inflation rate is 10 or 12 percent, and they get boosts in Social Security by 2 percent. And then we wonder why they're complaining and having trouble making it. The only way this can be solved is cutting huge sums back. And we can do this. Not only can we cut this if we cut enough from this overseas spending, we get an additional benefit, because it would save so much money that we wouldn't even need an income tax at all. (Cheers and applause.) Can we only dream about the day we don't have the income tax or the Federal Reserve system, and we have peace prosperity? (Cheers and applause.)
You know, the energy from the campaign has come from the young people and those who have been frustrated who are young at heart and still believe in liberty and believe in freedom. (Cheers and applause.) It has been said by some that I've removed your apathy, and I'm glad I'm able to do that. But believe me, people like you who campaign the way you have done has removed the skepticism that I had at the beginning of this campaign. (Cheers and applause.)
Though we would always like to have done better in all the campaigns and all the elections -- and we will continue to do better, and we will continue this fight, we're not giving up -- (cheers and applause) -- but we have to realize that not only hundreds or thousands, maybe hundreds of thousands of people now have heard this message. Some had heard it and forgotten about it. Some had dropped out. Some have never been involved, and the young people are rallying. They hear about this, and they say, this is exciting! And they've added it up, and they figure out that they're not going to get much out of the system that we have. And they understand that freedom really works. (Cheers and applause.)
Along with the freedom that we strive for, we accept the responsibility of freedom. We take care of ourselves, and we don't depend on the nanny state to take care of us, either. (Cheers and applause.) But the magnificent thing that I have observed around the country in giving so many speeches and getting to the rallies is how freedom brings people together. It doesn't divide us, it brings us together. It brings diversity together, because we don't want to tell people how they want to use their freedom. How they want to run their lives is their business as long as they don't hurt anybody. And it's your own lives! (Cheers and applause.)
Not only is the control of your lives that we want to strive for. But of course, we want to have you have the opportunity to control all of your money. Now, over the years in the last 100 years, something happened to the notion that freedom came in a unit. Personal liberty and economic liberty should be one unit. But in this country in the last 100 years, there's been some groups defend reasonably well personal liberty, and others defend reasonably well economic liberty. But it's one in the same. If nothing else, I hope this campaign brings out this notion that freedom is a unitary thing. That people have a right to their life and a right to their liberty and a right to the fruits of their labor means you have a right to control everything that you do and to control all the money that you earn. And there's nothing negative about that. If you want peace and prosperity, this is the way to go. This idea that you can have a government that plays the role of a nanny state, that promotes virtue and excellence. Once the government gets involved in that and perfect distribution of wealth and equity, they can only do that with the destruction of liberty. And this what we've been doing systematically through, tragically, the young generation. Your generation has inherited a mess created not by your fault. Yet the spirit of liberty still exists.
You know, I think so often about how one must have felt if they were born at the time of the Russian revolution and grew up with the Russian revolution. What would happen? Would the spirit of liberty remain in our heart? But you know, it did, even in the Soviet Union. When you think of the life of Solzhenitsyn, I mean, he came out of the Soviet Union -- (applause) -- Solzhenitsyn came out of the Soviet Union having an understanding of the classics. He could speak English, he knew about freedom, he knew about religious values in spite of all of the oppression of the Soviet system. No, the spirit of liberty can never be quenched. And right now, we are in a period of time where it has been diluted, it has been diminished, but it's just coming alive again, realizing of the necessity.
I think that this has come together because people have realized there are serious problems in Washington. Government just plain doesn't work. (Cheers and applause.) Most young people know Social Security is insolvent. And if you're going into the work force or just been put into the work force, you're going to pay into it for a lot of years and not get anything out of it.
But then again, we had an example just a couple of years ago about the total inefficiency of government. And this is something that the president got all the blame for. But quite frankly, he doesn't deserve all the blame for this one. Maybe the war, but on this one, on the Katrina disaster, you know, we have a terrible, terrible, you know, storm, and a lot of people suffer. Then the efficiency of the federal government -- this whole idea the Department of Homeland Security and FEMA to rush in to -- (audience boos) -- they're supposed to rush in there and save the day. What was the first thing they did? Totally disastrous -- they took the guns away from the people who wanted to protect their private property! (Audience boos.)
And then they had the Congress appropriate tens of billions of dollars. And of course, they went down there, and they said, well, if you're suffering and you need something, we'll but you a trailer. Well, the trailers didn't get used. They all just rotted away. Then they figured that people might be hungry, so they started passing out checks -- $2,000 a piece. And lo and behold, people lined up from all around the country. They flocked in, and they took the check. Then our government discovers the wrong people got some checks! What we'll do is we'll send them a letter and ask them to return the money. (Laughter.) (Central ?) economic planning doesn't work.
In contrast, in 1900, we had the worst natural disaster in our history in my district. It was the hurricane in Galveston, and it got wiped off the map essentially. But the city and the township around it raised the city level, built a seawall. FEMA wasn't there. They weren't in the way to get in the middle of it and mess it up, and there was no Department of Homeland Security. We don't need to think that we can't take care of ourselves without this federal government on our back and on lives the whole time! (Cheers and applause.)
Well, sometimes they call these ideas radical. But what is so radical about the Constitution? I think the radicals are in charge, and we need to remove them from government. (Cheers and applause.)
As I said, freedom and the Constitution bring us together. The type of system we have today is very divisive. It is going to get worse, because as our country gets poorer, as there's less production and the only thing the government has left to do is create money without real value, the people are going to be clamoring and clamoring. And this is what's happened over these last 60, 70 years. We have developed a system of government where everybody has this incentive to pay for a lobbyist to go to Washington to help divide the pie or divvy up the pie. But the pie is shrinking and getting smaller, and the demands are getting greater. People come along and think everybody has a right to this and a right to that. You know, the truth is, we don't have a right to somebody else's productivity. We don't have a right to -- (cheers and applause) -- we don't have a right to a car or a house or a job. You know, what we have a right to is a right to our life and a right to our liberty. And the government shouldn't be taking away from it! (Cheers and applause.)
You know, the danger is is that government so often builds up tremendous fear. They always have to have fear built up into the people so they accept the idea that we're supposed to sacrifice our liberties. But we never have to sacrifice our liberties to be secure. Absolutely never! (Cheers and applause.) As a matter of fact, the freer we are and the more clearly we understand the Second Amendment, the more secure we all will be! (Cheers and applause.)
The big problem is in this atmosphere which is deliberately designed to create fear in the hearts of the people so that we go to war and do all these things, it gives the people who want to oppress us an excuse to further oppress us at home. You know, those of us who have been in the military and government, we take an oath of office to obey the Constitution. We promise to obey the Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic. (Cheers and applause.) And today, if we were realistic, we would realize there is no foreign threat, no matter what they tell us. There's nobody going to touch us. We have more weapons than all the other countries put together in the world. What we need to do is guard against the intrusion of our personal liberties here at home. And unfortunately, we are rapidly losing them. We've lost the right of habeas corpus. We've lost the right of privacy in our homes. And we don't have the passe comitatus act. We don't have the protection of the insurrection act. And we have given up so much.
And right after, you know, right after 9/11, you know, quickly they passed this disastrous bill that should have never been passed, and that is the Patriot Act. (Audience boos.) But that is the ultimate problem is when government gets too big, liberty is sacrificed. When liberty is sacrificed, it takes away the creative energy of a free people where wealth really comes from. And this is our great threat.
So we should not be redistributing wealth, telling people how to live their lives. We shouldn't have a government that overrides state laws that struggle to free up an opportunity for individuals to take care of themselves. For instance, in states now that want to allow individuals to use marijuana for medicinal reasons, the federal government should never have a right to come in and overpower the states in enforcing those laws. (Cheers and applause.)
You know, whether it's the war -- a war against drugs, a war overseas -- or the war against those who object to the tax system we have or complain about our monetary system, it's all used there to further suppress our personal liberties. But I am absolutely convinced that even if we have an economic tragedy and we all get poor, there's only one thing that we need to get back on our feet, and that is our liberty. (Cheers and applause.) If we have our liberty, we will survive.
The Constitution was written explicitly for one purpose -- to restrain the federal government. (Cheers and applause.) There is essentially nothing in the Constitution that is designed to restrain the peaceful activities of the people. And unfortunately, we have lost that. But right now, we're at a turning point. The system is not viable. We cannot maintain our empire. We cannot continue to take care of our people by merely deficit financing and printing money. We can't continue to borrow 800 billion (dollars) overseas, including the need to borrow from China and Japan and Saudi Arabia. This will come to an end. It doesn't have to end badly. This is the reason why we should be very happy that we have an answer. We have the traditions. The Soviet system had much greater tragedy as it ended, because they didn't have our traditions. We at least have a Constitution that we used to follow. We used to know what sound money was about. We used to know what personal property rights were all about. So we do have our traditions.
The thing that we lack right now is determination and an understanding. And that is what this group of people, our organization, our campaign, your campaign is going to do. It's going to renew this understanding and determination to make sure that this country stays free! (Cheers and applause.)