Ron Paul: Still Walking The Walk
“I’m for less government.”
“I’m going to cut spending.”
It’s what literally every Republican says when they’re running for office … yet hardly any of them ever offer a specific plan. And virtually none of them follow through after they’re elected.
Take S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley, for example, who campaigned as the leader of a Tea Party “movement” yet months later signed off on record-setting spending increases as governor. Or take former president George W. Bush and his self-righteous band of “compassionate conservatives,” who blew up the national debt and ushered in the era of bailouts (which U.S. President Barack Obama has dramatically expanded).
To his credit, U.S. Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) is not in that camp. While thousands of GOP politicians (including Mitt Romney, Rick Perry, Newt Gingrich and other 2012 presidential candidates) “talk the talk,” Paul is one of a handful who actually “walks the walk.”
He proved that again this week when he rolled out $1 trillion in immediate cuts to the federal budget – a dramatic improvement over the totally inconsequential “cuts” that Washington politicians have been debating.
Predictably, the lamestream press – which has done its best to ignore Paul’s candidacy – bemoaned the devastating impact of these long-overdue reductions in government.
“Economists across the political spectrum say the impact of such drastic government spending cuts would be majorly disruptive and harmful to the economy in the short term,” The Washington Post reported.
Of course that’s what they said …
Here’s our question to those economists, though … what’s been the impact on the economy of four consecutive years of trillion-dollar deficits? Or an unprecedented lending spree to financial institutions that were “too big to fail?” And what about the trillions of dollars that government has printed in an effort to increase the money supply?
What have we gained by abolishing welfare reform? Funding unemployment benefits in perpetuity? Bailing out state governments to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars?
Yeah … riddle us that, smarty pants(es).
The bottom line is that big government Republicans (and bigger government Democrats) have ruined this country with a reckless, unsustainable and unprecedented decade-long spending orgy. And sadly, GOP Congressional leaders and the vast majority of the 2012 presidential candidates have shown they lack the political will to do more than just tinker around the edges of this looming cataclysm.
Ron Paul’s plan is a courageous rebuke of that “bipartisanshit.”
Earlier this year, Washington politicians struggled to find $900 billion in cuts over the next ten years (as they authorized $2.4 trillion in new deficit spending over a 17-month period) – a pitiful attempt to
The federal government will spend an estimated $1.3 trillion more than it took in this year – the fourth straight year that deficit spending has topped the $1 trillion mark. Five years ago the annual deficit was just $160 billion. Ten years ago, there was a surplus.
Paul’s plan? It would cut $1 trillion now … not at some point in the distant future.
Even better, Paul’s plan would balance the federal budget by 2015 – which is five years faster than the most ambitious spending reduction plan put forward by fiscal conservatives in the U.S. Congress (and fifteen years faster than the official GOP spending reduction plan put forward by U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan).
How does Paul accomplish this?
First, he would immediately end the costly American military engagements in Iraq and Afghanistan. Paul would also immediately reduce the federal workforce by 10 percent and eliminate five cabinet-level departments: Commerce, Education, Energy, HUD, and the Interior. Beyond that, he would freeze all entitlement spending, privatize numerous government agencies and make participation in Social Security voluntary.
In a nice personal touch, Paul also said he would refuse Barack Obama’s taxpayer-funded salary of $400,000 a year and take less than one tenth of that amount – $39,336, which is equal to the median personal income of the average American worker.
That’s inconsequential from a deficit standpoint, obviously, but it’s a nice symbolic gesture (not to mention vote-getter).
“My reaction to the proposal can be summed up in one word …” wrote Cato Institute budget analyst Tad DeHaven. “Hallelujah.”
We couldn’t agree more.
Even critics of Paul agree that the plan is a stark reminder of the sort of testicular fortitude that is required to truly turn America around.
“For all my reservations about Ron Paul, he does a real public service by reminding conservatives that, while we are rightly hesitant about radical proposals, tinkering around the edges is not going to get it done in the long term,” writes Kevin D. Williamson of The National Review. “The age of unpleasant choices is upon us.”
Actually “the age of unpleasant choices” has been upon us for some time, but politicians of both parties have ignored this reality – choosing instead to continue spending our county into oblivion while calling Paul a nut job for sounding the alarm.
We enthusiastically embrace the budget cuts and spending reforms outlined by Ron Paul (just as we endorsed axing all of this low-hanging fruit).
We also applaud Paul for – once again – being one of the only “Republicans” in America who is demonstrating a commitment to the taxpayer that extends beyond his rhetoric.
Pic: via Daylife