Friday, October 16, 2009

Ron Paul's Principles Should Hijack Both Parties

I used to consider myself a Republican. That was long ago and far away. It began with the presidential candidacy of a man named Ronald Reagan. He said some pretty profound things like “Government isn't the solution to the problem, government is the problem” and “The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: 'I'm from the government and I'm here to help.'” Unfortunately, only a few months into his presidency he was shot in an assassination attempt. I don't know what went on in the time he was in the hospital recovering nor what was going through his mind, but when he reasserted his control of the federal government he grew it rather than shrinking and limiting it as his rhetoric suggested would happen. He, like our current president, talked a good game but when it came down to brass tacks did not deliver. He did not stick to his principles nor the principles of liberty upon which our nation was founded. As a result, I felt the Republican party had left me.

In the years following, I explored many different avenues in an attempt to find political sanity in an insane system of big government worship. I felt like so many Americans that neither political party reflected my world view or espoused the principles I grew up believing in. I felt that the Democrats and Republicans liked to bicker over little, insignificant issues, but they were in agreement on the truly important, larger issues of growing federal government control. The only difference seemed to be the pace at which to grow government. Third parties seemed too small to be effective and the laws regulating and restricting their growth and access to the public too draconian and entrenched to overcome. They had effectively isolated me, shut me down, shut me up and shut me out of the political process. In the country famous for its freedom I felt I had no voice. I felt impotent and resigned to insignificance. So I, like so many others, became apathetic and simply watched as the ship of state drifted in a sea of socialism under the guidance of collectivist captains and crews.

Ron Paul's presidential campaign changed all that. After years of voting for third party candidates with excellent ideas relegated to the back pages of newspapers and shut out like myself by the political and media establishment, there came to the fore someone who spoke the truth, understood the principles of liberty and was in one of the two parties controlling the nation's political duopoly. Despite the fact that the mainstream media and the establishment politicos tried to minimize his significance by labeling him and his followers kooky, unelectable, quaint, out of touch, etc., he developed quite a following. Thanks to modern developments a core of passionate, vocal, active, ordinary people were able to disseminate his message to the masses. Finally the message of freedom was being exposed to large numbers of people. I was pleasantly surprised that it was so well received by so many.

Now one Senator Lindsey Graham wants to complain about Ron Paul supporters? Now he wants to make the claim that the Republican party is being hijacked? Now he claims that the Republicans are not going to be the Ron Paul party? Now he's worried because he has to answer to constituents in his own party who understand the principles honored by free society and wish for him to adhere to such principles? Now he insinuates that only angry white men want a free society? Maybe he should more closely examine the message he so readily rails against.

Is Mr. Graham against peace? Is he so in love with perpetual war that he will continue to sacrifice the principles we supposedly hold so dear? Ron Paul does not support interventionist policies. While some would claim that his is an isolationist position, he has often cited the wisdom of Washington and Jefferson when advocating commerce with all nations and alliances with none. It is not an isolationist policy to want to trade instead of fight with other nations. It is more a policy of minding our own business and not putting our nose into the internal affairs of other nations. There's nothing wrong with that. It certainly would mean we would no longer be spilling the blood of innocents. It certainly would mean we would no longer be spending our treasure and the lives of our children for the sake of the international bankers and multi-national corporations.

Is Mr. Graham against following the Constitution? Dr. Paul supports the constitution. He is practically the only congress person that follows it. While other lawmakers treat our founding documents as if they don't exist, Dr. Paul continuously points out the unconstitutional nature of most laws as a reason to vote against them. While many power grabbing control freaks try to convince everyone that the Constitution is an antiquated, “living” document open to interpretation and not applicable in the modern world, Dr. Paul is quick to point out that there are prescribed methods and remedies provided in that very document for cases when some point of contention may arise. Most lawmakers like Mr. Graham seem to prefer to try to circumvent the Constitution in order to achieve more control rather than go about the arduous task of changing it as should be done so that they remain within the bounds of what is supposed to be the supreme law of the land. If one is not willing to abide by such a document, one should not swear an oath to uphold it.

Is Mr. Graham opposed to freedom and liberty for individuals trying to apply their own solutions and assume personal responsibility for their own lives? Such concepts are at least partially what the individualist philosophy is about and what some of the founding fathers were expressing in their writings as they struggled with the notions of what a freedom loving society should be. By enshrining these concepts in the first ten amendments of the Constitution, also known as the Bill of Rights, our founding fathers thought they had guaranteed that powerful individuals in government would be unable to trample the rights of the not so powerfully connected common man working hard and doing his best to improve his lot in life. It is Dr. Paul who supports the principles which would allow individuals to once again determine what is best for their selves and how to best control their destinies without government interference or taxation. Looking at Mr. Graham's voting record makes one wonder just how much he feels government should be involved in the individual's life.

These are just a few of the principles Dr. Paul espouses. They are the bulwarks upon which American society was designed and helped create perhaps the most prosperous society the world has ever seen. American politicians should not be shunning these principles, no matter their party. They shouldn't be chastising those who are frustrated with watching them and their collectivist philosophies drag us into economic destruction. They should instead be listening to their concerns and ideas on how to best get out nation and everyone in it back on the road to prosperity. It is their big government intervention that has led us down the path we find ourselves on, not free market philosophies or constitutional obedience as they would have you believe. We have not had a true free market or seen the Constitution obeyed in well over a hundred years, and perhaps never.

The Democrats and Republicans should not be arguing over which big government program to enact or what's the best way to enact it, they should be arguing over the best way to make certain our individual freedoms are preserved so that we the people can best determine amongst ourselves how to best solve our problems rather than having a one size fits all solution being handed down from some elite group who in many cases may be thousands of miles away. The politicians in charge have had their chance. Most of them have been involved with government for far too long. They failed time and time again. In my opinion it is time to try something different. The principles espoused by Ron Paul and other freedom advocates have been shown to work in the past and deserve another chance.

Ron Paul supporters may or may not outnumber Lindsey Graham supporters, but that should not matter. The principles that are supposed to guide this nation protect the rights of every individual, not just those in the majority. Everyone is supposed to have a voice. Dr. Paul helped me to find mine. I refuse to ever again be silent, sit back and watch while big government advocates, be they collectivist Democrats or collectivist Republicans, take our society down a path leading to an authoritarian police state, fiscal and moral bankruptcy, and perhaps an even darker and more nefarious agenda. It is time to once again let freedom ring across this great land. Mr. Graham should welcome those who espouse such American ideals into his party and be proud to be associated with such American values instead of denying their voices and embracing the same big government, collectivist ideals tried by systems that have failed. Unfortunately, Senator Graham is unlikely to change. He is unlikely to listen to me or anyone else speaking out about the virtues of freedom unless he feels it is necessary in order to get re-elected and that probably won't happen until it's too late for him.

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