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Mike Church: We’re with Congressman Ron Paul, Congressman Paul, thanks for being with us.
Ron Paul: Thank you.
Mike Church: Let me start off and ask you what kind of reaction did you get Monday night after the debate in New Hampshire?
Ron Paul: It was all very positive, but I guess I would also say that maybe the people most eager to support me might have been there too, but I would like to think they were all that positive, no they were extremely positive, but I was also impressed with sort of the positive references to me during the debate which was quite different from four years ago because most of the references to me would have been negative then, so I think this represents a change in the country.
Mike Church: Congressman Paul, Senator Lindsey Graham said that he had a question that he would like to ask those that are for rapid withdrawal from Afghanistan, I want to read this to you and it’s a direct quote, “How can you allow the Taliban to come back in Afghanistan and not eventually affect our national security?” Congressman Paul, how do you answer that question?
Ron Paul: No he’s all mixed up, because the Taliban doesn’t event set a goal to come here, their goal and the purpose of the Taliban is the same as I mentioned in my speech, they’re part of the Mujahedeen’s it’s an outgrowth of Mujahedeen that we were allies with to throw out the occupiers in the 1980s when the Soviets were there. And therefore he has it all wrong, if he doesn’t want the Taliban to get radical and become more like Al-Qaeda where they want to come here to kills us, they’re much more aggressive because a small number, a small percentage, if he doesn’t want that to happen, which nobody wants to, he should avoid the incentive.
The incentive is our presence there, he should try to understand the history of what’s happening in Iran. We went in and set up a dictator, Mossadegh in 1953 and he was our guy and we stole in a way the oil and we did well at the expense of the people and what happened? That radicalized the people in opposition and that’s how the Ayatollah came in, so I’m sure he does it with good intention but he really doesn’t understand history, he doesn’t understand what’s going on, and it’s a deadly misunderstanding because as long as, he goes in that vein he just means “Let’s kill more Taliban,” and every time you kill a Taliban or have somebody kill innocently and there are plenty of innocent deaths over there and we do it from 30,000 feet or from a drone or something like this, all that does is build up anger and converts more people from Taliban that just wants to get rid of the occupiers and convert them in to the Al-Qaeda.
Mike Church: Now Graham also said that and again I quote, “We need to help those who will fight the terrorist in their own backyard, that’s what Ronald Reagan would have done, that’s what I want my party to be, the party that will defeat radical Islam and stand by those who will fight them in their own backyard.”
Ron Paul: I think my answer has to be awfully close, but also I think I could apply the Ronald Reagan quote that I used in my speech because Ronald Reagan admitted that he made a serious mistake by getting involved in internal civil war in Lebanon and he said if he would have followed a policy of neutrality, he admitted in his memoirs that those 241 Marines would be alive, now that is a courageous statement and Graham ought to read that and study it.
Mike Church: We hear all the time that Israel is our strongest ally in the region, the Middle East. Should we even have any allies in the Middle East?
Ron Paul: We should have official friends, we should make friends with as many people as possible and I think we should treat them as our best friend and right now the country that I think qualifies as our best friend is Canada, we trade more with them than anybody else, we travel with them more that anybody else and we give them no foreign aid. So I think that if we care about Israel, we shouldn’t get them so dependent because soon all our puppet governments are going to collapse and that’s what’s happening which jeopardizes Israel and they’re going to have a bigger concern and I want to stop all foreign aid, not foreign aid against Israel but people say “Oh my goodness, you can’t do that, that will hurt Israel.”
But the Arab nations surrounding Israel get seven times as much aid as Israel gets, and also a recent study came out that showed that for every dollar you give to an Arab nation, it prompts Israel to spend $1.4, they have to spend it to compensate for the increase in the opposition, and this to me makes no sense. The other thing I don’t like about this getting Israel dependent on us is, one we might not be there when they really needs us because we’ll be broke but also they can’t do anything, if they want to talk friends with somebody, we might say “Oh no, you can’t talk with Syria, you can’t do this,” we’ve done that on occasion.
But also when they decide that they want to do something with their borders like just recently when Obama suggested to them what they ought to do with the Palestinian, I mean even my own sympathies are irrelevant if you have a non interventions foreign policy, as far as Israel goes, I defend their right to do what they need to do for their own security and they shouldn’t give up their sovereignty to us, if they depend on our money and our troops, they’re sacrificing more than they need to sacrifice.
Mike Church: What about NATO allies?
Ron Paul: Well, people say we have to be there to support our NATO allies, I think we should be support with the American tax payer and the American people and our sovereignty and our well being, so I sort of liked what, I took the advise that Robert Taff gave when they were setting up and he says “Don’t get in it, it’s going to bog us down and lead to us fighting fights that we shouldn’t be fighting,” and that’s exactly what happened so we shouldn’t be taking orders from NATO whether it’s in Bosnia or whether it’s in Libya and taken out of the hands and controls of the US government, US Congress and US tax payer.
Mike Church: He’s a hypothetical for you, as president you move to stabilize and begin to rebuild our currency and the value of it, at the same time the Chinese move to begin devaluing their currency, what would happen and what would you do about it?
Ron Paul: Well purposely devaluing a currency whether it’s us or the Chinese is not good all round, it just destroys value so it’s very detrimental. So if we have a stronger currency, we’re going to benefit because we’re going to invite capital into our country and that’s what we need, for us to badger the Chinese on what they do, we should be badgering ourselves so that we don’t borrow so much and we live beyond our means and become indebted to the Chinese, what they do and if they print too much, they’re going to have inflation, matter fact, they have been trapped as well too, they took all our dollars but they monetized our dollars, they did a favor for us, actually we’re able to export some of our inflation, spend the dollars over there and they monetize and print a new Yuan and now they’re suffering inflation and they’re very concerned about their price rising.
Mike Church: In the debate Monday night, you were given 30 seconds to answer a question about illegal immigration. Question, what is the proper way to deal with illegal immigration?
Ron Paul: Of course it is a big issue and that’s why I wrote a whole chapter in ‘Liberty Defined’ on what we can do and can’t do and why we have that problem. I think it’s clear in the Constitution that the Federal government has something to say about people coming across our borders and we have a responsibility to protect the borders. But I think right now one of the problems we have is the inefficiency at our borders, I think if they could process people a little faster and would be better off and we’d have less illegal. But I basically say the people who come here illegally, no amnesty, no citizenship, no mandates to get free medical care and for education, Federal government telling the states, bankrupting our southern states, that they should not, and I don’t see how it’s possible where you can round up 20 million people but I would not give them citizenship, benefits and allow them to vote, I think that would be very detrimental.
But it is the welfare system that helps encourage this, even when we had good times, people came into my office wanting more workers, because a lot of our people wouldn’t work, and so I think welfare is bad both because it doesn’t prompt some of our people to work when they should be and it encourages those who come here illegally to use our services, it’s part of the reason that California is bankrupt, I mean tune of billions of dollars I think it may be $9 billion a year that they use to give free benefits to illegal, so that should not be and I think it would iron itself out but I worry a little bit about immigration, I think in my chapter that I write ‘be careful about ID cards and fences and all because it may backfire, it may be that the fence is being built to keep out illegal’s, but it may be a fence that will keep in American citizens financially that is already the case, you just can’t move your money and your life very easily, we can’t go into Mexico or Canada anymore without our passports, so that is not symbolic of a society getting freer, that’s symbolic of a society cracking down on our freedoms to move about.
Mike Church: Congressman Paul, can you explain to folks who may be unfamiliar with your views why is it so important to end the Fed.
Ron Paul: The Fed is one half of our economy, we have transaction, your wages, what you earn, what you pay, everything is translated in the value of the dollar. And it’s controlled by a few people secretly they cannot be monitored by the Congress, so they do central economic planning through the Federal Reserve. Now spending is out of control, Congress is responsible to a large degree but Congress has been especially complacent about the Federal Reserve, they didn’t fully understand it, but they did know that, one time I say “We need more entitlements, we need more welfare” so they run it up and it seems to be taken care of, we have debt and the Fed comes in and prints the money they we need.
They counterfeit the money, and then another group will say “Yes, it’s risky business but we need these five wars to go on, we need to be all over the place, so how are you going to pay for it? Well we’ll print up the money.” So it encourages big government, it undermines our liberty, it creates the financial bubbles, it creates the boom times but it creates the depression and the recessions too. Because it’s bad economics, it’s also very unconstitutional too, there’s no authority in the constitution to have paper money printed by a secret group of people and it refutes the part of the Constitution said “Only Gold and Silver should be legal tender.”
Mike Church: Simply yes or no question coming up, should the Federal government end its war on drugs?
Ron Paul: Sure, absolutely yes.
Mike Church: Some folks may say “Why?”
Ron Paul: We’ve spent over a trillion dollars in the last 40 years on the war on drugs and there are more people using drugs now than ever before. One of the most deadly drugs that we have today is alcohol, kills more people than all the rest put together, more people die from the war on drugs and the fights going on and that’s why we have these border wars going on than they do from the drugs, yes there’s probably about 3,000 people die from illegal drugs a year but probably 20,000 get killed in the war on drugs. And it’s used as an excuse to undermine our freedoms, breaking into your house without search warrant, with guns blazing, into the wrong houses and killing people, no way.
And I believe in personal responsibility, I happen to uphold the use of drugs and I’m very cautious about prescription drugs too, I think they’re very bad and of course taught my children and grandchildren how dangerous they are but that doesn’t mean that I think that the solution comes from government, but it’s a trillion dollars of expense, it was unnecessary and it’s actually a lot worse than the tragedies of the 1920s when alcohol was illegal, but they still drank a lot of alcohol, a lot of bad alcohol and people died from the bad alcohol.
So the prohibitionists are just authoritarians and do-gooders that get emotional about it and they don’t realize what they have done, how much harm they have done.
Mike Church: Follow up question, can you end it if elected president?
Ron Paul: You could change it, you can’t end it you could maybe challenge some of the laws in court, but you don’t have to arrest people in California that are using marijuana even though California has legalized it especially for medical reasons, you could argue the case that we’re not going to supersede, constitutionally we don’t want to supersede state laws, but of course the consensus now in Washington, everybody wants more power in the executive in Washington, they say “All Federal law supersedes state laws.” Well I happen to be very sympathetic to nullification and actually what’s happening in California, I mean millions of people who have smoked Marijuana, they’ve already nullified some of these laws, so why are they still pretending, every once in a while you’ll still hear cases of people being arrested by the Federal government and I didn’t mention in my talk but they actually arrest people for drinking raw milk too.
The Mennonites or, somebody was arrested “Oh we’re going to get you, you’re not allowed to have that much freedom of choice, no danger.” So it’s the principle of freedom of choice and I frequently like to tie that into freedom of choice on usually your First Amendment, you don’t prohibit people from speaking just because they might say something controversial.
Mike Church: Now, there’s a lot of young people that follow your campaign and some of them are your most ardent fans and supporters, here’s a question, what would you say to them about the current situation a federally financed and federally guaranteed student loans, grants and what have you?
Ron Paul: Well nationalizing won’t hurt, I think we should phase it out, I think those loans ought to be paid off when they can but we should stop promoting that, then there’s the big question today whether $100,000 is a good investment you get out of college and some people are saying “It’s not really helping us” so they’re investing in some very poor education, so when I went to college and medical school, I always had a job on the side, always had my wife have a job on the side too, so that way you paid your way.
But it wasn’t that expensive, today because of the inflation plus because the government pushes money into these areas like whether it’s medicine or education, it doesn’t increase quality, it increase prices so you have to change all that, but nationalizing it isn’t a good idea but winding that program down with a guarantee, it should be market oriented, once it’s guaranteed, a bank is more likely give a guaranteed loan to a student that it is to invest in a small company wanting to produce some jobs.
Mike Church: At the debate in New Hampshire, some frivolous and silly questions were asked of the candidates, really didn’t have any impact on what you would do or what you thought you would do as president of the United States. But I thought that we may try this exercise and so I wrote a couple of questions that I think actually are relevant and would have something to do with you discharging your duties as president of the United States, I call it Rapid Fire with Ron Paul. Are you ready?
Ron Paul: We’ll try.
Mike Church: Your favorite metal for coins, gold or silver?
Ron Paul: Gold.
Mike Church: Von Hayek or Mises?
Ron Paul: Mises.
Mike Church: Adams of Jefferson?
Ron Paul: Jefferson. I like Sam too but…
Mike Church: Barry Goldwater in 1964 or Ronald Reagan in 1980?
Ron Paul: Goldwater.
Mike Church: And finally, after your election as president, when you speak to the nation, will you use handwritten notes or the teleprompter?
Ron Paul: Probably both and sometimes spontaneously.
Mike Church: Final question for you Congressman Paul, what is the most important role a president plays in our constitutional system?
Ron Paul: Setting the standard and the tone of how a free society works, to convince people that people can take better care of themselves than government and they need to get off this addiction to government caring for them from cradle to grave and I think that would solve most of our problems.
Mike Church: Congressman Paul, I want to thank you for taking some time out to sit down with us and answer questions, we really appreciate it, wish you best of luck in your campaign and God bless my friend.
Ron Paul: Thank you.
Mike Church: Thank you.