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Male News Anchor: Today when the DOW is down 180 and the words “QE3” keep cropping up again and again, whether you like it or not, do you expect the Fed to step in with some kind of additional easing?
Ron Paul: Oh, obviously. That’s the only thing they know how to do, and they are desperate, they have no other options. Even though I think that makes conditions worse, I think they’ll continue to do it. I am sure they have been purchasing a few treasury bills in these last few days since the national debt limit was raised. So QE seems to go on constantly, but maybe they’ll announce a precise program to try to calm the markets down a bit. But it certainly won’t solve our problems.
Male News Anchor: We took a listen to the testimony, the hearing the other day where you addressed the Fed chairman and asked him whether gold was money, and he said no. And then you asked him, “Why do you have so much of it?” And he said it’s tradition. I don’t think I ever got the sense as to whether or not you were satisfied with that answer.
Ron Paul: Well, I thought it was sort of humorous because obviously gold is money, and it’s not because I say it’s money, it because history says it’s money. And all central banks essentially hold gold and a lot of central banks are buying more gold. The West, of course, has been looking down on gold and getting rid of it, but the countries that are more productive than we are in the Far East are buying gold. So gold is money and you can’t eliminate it as money just because our Federal Reserve Board Chairman says no longer. Besides, my argument also has been that the law of the land, which is the constitution, still says that gold and silver are legal tender, that’s never been repealed.
Female News Anchor: Congressman, I want to ask you about a potential move to a gold standard, which perhaps you would like to see. Why would you want to move to a standard which is based on an asset which the U.S. don’t have control of? We’re not the major holder of gold assets around the world, other countries are.
Ron Paul: I don’t think that’s all that relevant. I think if you’re a prosperous country and you produce, then you can defend the gold standard. But I’m not so much for dictating anything, I’m wanting to allow the market to choose. I think we can do much better than what we had in the 19th century where we had fixed ratios between gold and silver. I think we need a much more modern approach. Matter of fact, as much as I’m against the Fed, I’m not for closing the Fed, I want competition. I don’t want people to go to jail because they used gold and silver as legal tender, and I want to make it legal to compete; this was sort of Hayek’s viewpoint of competing currencies. So I’m much more in favor of that than deciding what should be money. I just think that history shows that the wealth is gold, and I think gold is acting as a very strong currency right now because people are very, very nervous and guess what, they’re going to gold.
Male News Anchor: Mr. Ron, you have a very radical strategy for a smaller government, you don’t like Social Security, Medicare very much, you’re not totally in favor of public schools, say some. Given the backlash that there was with Paul Ryan’s attempt that cut Medicare and Social Security, do you think that there’s mileage in that with the American people still, when 1 in 5 dollars received at the personal level comes from entitlements.
Ron Paul: That’s the key political question. Assuming probably 51% of people are still anxious to get a check from the government, and 49% are tired of paying it, I would say my views are very appealing to those people who have to work for a living. And those others who might lose their benefits are very nervous about it. But my programs wouldn’t cause the loss, the loss is coming anyway because these programs are ending because our country is bankrupt and we won’t be able to afford them. Even if we have now opted to keep sending the checks out, we’re not going to declare a default by not sending the checks, we decided to print the money and send them checks that have less value and that’s why the standard of living is going down. So those programs are not viable, just as our foreign policy and our foreign occupations; that is not a viable option anymore either.
Male News Anchor: You voted no other debt ceiling vote, you said you’ll never vote to raise the debt ceiling, you never have and you never will. But since it is now the law of the land, how would you structure this super Congress committee if you could do it, because a lot of cynics say it’s going to be 6 to 6 and it’s going to be awfully difficult to find someone who will want to bargain and make it 7 to 5.
Ron Paul: Well, I would challenge it in the courts and I would say that it’s not a constitutional function, there is no authority to have a super Congress that takes over for what the House and the Senate are supposed to do.
Male News Anchor: You think the committee is unconstitutional?
Ron Paul: Oh, I don’t think there’s any doubt about it, where does it say that we can set up a program like this and then pop something back into the House and the Senate and say you have and up-and-down vote, you can’t take it to sub-committee or full committee, you can’t negotiate it and you don’t know what is going on there. So no, that is not what was set up by the constitution, that’s so far removed from what was intended, that it almost becomes a silly notion. And it is not going to solve the problem, you know. We have to decide what our country is all about and what the role of government ought to be. So if it’s strictly a budgetary thing, it can be settled by appointing 12 select individuals, but they’re not dealing with, “do we need to change our foreign policy, do we need to change our attitude about the entitlement system, do we need to change this system where we have a Federal Reserve that monetizes our debt?” which is the moral hazard of the economy. Because that’s why Congress spends because they know somebody will buy the debt and it’s been going on wholesale since 1971 since we lost the last link to gold. And so these problems that we’re facing today were anticipated and expected by all the free market economist ever since 1971.
Male News Anchor: Some people have pointed out today that those who are most opposed to QE3, in a lot of cases, have the most to gain because a lot of them are in gold, and if the Fed ploughs ahead that’s more money they’re going to make in the yellow metal.
Ron Paul: I think I understand what you’re saying, that my policy would be such that if they followed my policy, the gold coins that I hold will not go up in dollar value anymore. That is true and it sort of contradicts it, but if you have sound money, gold, in many ways, remains more stable in relationship to the dollar.
Male News Anchor: So how badly do you feel the need to enact change at the moment? If you don’t get the nomination of the Republican Party, would you consider declaring as a libertarian third party candidate, even if that splits the anti-Obama vote?
Ron Paul: Well, I think whether it splits the anti-Obama vote or not is pretty irrelevant, but I have not given that option any consideration.
Male News Anchor: Congressman, its’ good to talk to you as always, and we’ll watching closely with that Ames straw poll just a few days away.
Ron Paul: Thank you, good to be with you.
Male News Anchor: Congressman Ron Paul.
Female News Anchor: Alright, we, of course, will have much more on the market sell off right after this break. Right now the SNP 500 is down by about 1.6.