Ron Paul vs. Jeff Flake in Earmark, My Eye[*]

In the Washington Examiner, John LaBeaume writes up a kerfuffle between two of the rootin-tootinest libertarian members of Congress, Reps. Ron Paul (R-Texas) and Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.). Flake had introduced an amendment to HR 3791, a bill that authorized federal help for wildfire fighting; as part of the amendment, Flake would have prohibited earmarks, fearing that his esteemed colleagues would lard the bill up with all sorts of, well, lard. Paul was one of two Republicans to vote against Flake's amendment, specifically on the grounds that it prohibited earmarks. LaBeaume reports:

Flake’s amendment was modest.

It merely seeks to ensure a competitive, need-based process for parceling out the firefighting grants authorized by the bill. The mechanism was aptly judicious: it enforces the bill's ban on earmarking. If opened to earmarks, Flake fears that influential Members – like Lewis – could divert dollars to their districts, away from regions with less congressional clout, but in more dire need of an occasional emergency blaze dousing, admittedly not unlike the maverick Flake's sometimes-parched Southwestern home base. Of course, and more significantly, once Members start horse trading in earmarks, the price tag tends to swell even beyond the bloated figure originally authorized.

Again, Paul stuck to his guns and stood by his controversial defense of earmarking, and let the red light glow next to his name on the big board above the Speaker's Chair. His office told me, via an email statement, that Paul maintains that “that all spending should be earmarked as this provides the greatest transparency [and]…gives constituents an opportunity for input regarding how their tax dollars are spent.” The statement paid obligatory lip service to “drastically” reducing spending.

LaBeaume questions Paul's priorities in this and other recent votes. Specifically, he takes the good doctor to task for pushing hard on his audit the fed bill while saying next to nothing about health care reform:

Paul's immediate obsession is trained on legalizing Liberty Dollars. Even though this health care overhaul threatens his livelihood - Dr. Paul is a physician by vocation, remember - from his homepage, you wouldn't know that this issue looms over Washington one bit. Health care merits only a few addresses in Paul's posted floor statements and press releases from the entire 111th Congress....

As 'Armageddon Day' for health care regulation approaches, instead of taking up his scalpel to trim a behemoth, Dr. Paul is fiddling with the Fed.

Whole article here.

More on Ron Paul's earmarking position here.

To paraphrase Todd ("Godd") Rundgren, sometimes I don't know what to feel. Can't we all just get along, and denounce the Fed and health care reform and earmarks and out-of-control spending? I'm sure we can.

Here's Flake at Reason's 40th anniversary bash in November '08 explaining why the GOP got what it had coming to them in '06 and '08:

[*]: Rotten headline allusion explained here.

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  • shecky||

    "Godd" Rundgren?

  • shecky||

    Also, Ron Paul is his own biggest Paul 'tard.

  • ||

    Really? Paul-tards? I guess when you're a Dr and a congressman and a long time father and husband of OTHER Doctors and freedom fighters, and you call him and his followers tards? What is WRONG with you? You must be a liberal. You know what's wrong with liberalism? Same thing thats wrong with Socialism, eventually you run out of other peoples money to spend.

  • oaktownadam||

    More proof that our language has become hopelessly corrupted.

    Phil, most of us on this site are liberals in the classical sense.

  • VM||

    and RP is not libertarian. he's a "constitution party" social conservative.

    Being that, you necessarily entail a tyranny of the majority. So, no he's not a libertarian.

  • ||

    RP not a libertarian? What kind of funny grass are you smoking son? He's never been an Alan Keyes social conservative. Shame on you.

  • DJF||

    If you are against earmarks then you are against of congressional representatives deciding where taxpayer money goes and in favor of faceless federal bureaucrats handing out tax dollars. I have never understood the furor over earmarks when the bureaucrats are spending far more money and with far less input from the taxpayers. I can see being against both spending by why the targeting of the much smaller spending and ignoring the bigger spending?

  • ||

    If you are against earmarks then you are against of congressional representatives deciding where taxpayer money goes and in favor of faceless federal bureaucrats handing out tax dollars.

    Congressional representatives can decide impartial formulae. Of course, this can get silly and lead to things like the incredibly long definition of Louisiana in the health care bill.

  • ||

    No one here is ignoring the bigger spending done by bureaucrats. How many H&R posts have there been lampooning stimulus spending during the past few weeks?

    The point is, Ron Paul is a hypocrite on the issue of spending. He fights for earmarks for spending in his district that is clearly not authorized by the Constitution. Indeed, these are pretty much the only legislative successes he has on his record -- getting federal money spent on stupid shit in his district.

    And further, I know it's libertarian chic to bag on federal bureaucrats, but most of them are dedicated professionals who know far better where money needs to be spent than congresspeople do. Obviously it would be preferable to have the market select where money gets spent, but given that it's going to be spent by government I'd rather have the bureaucrats do it than Congress.

  • Tim Russert||

    Is somebody invoking my name?


    There would still be slavery!!

    How can you be for the Constitution if you mean to amend it?

    Why are you in favor of earmarks?

    [He slowly returns to his grave after hearing the cock sing...]

  • Justo Montoya||

    Problem is federal bureaucrats are accountable to nobody. they are not elected. besides earmarks are only .01% of the spending that's done. Flake votes for all the war spending thats a hell of a lot more money than earmarks paul puts in for his district.

  • JohnD||

    You say that like it's a bad thing. One of the few legitimate functions of the federal government is National Security which would of course include war spending.

  • robc||

    War != security

  • liberty_equality_solidarity||

    No, they changed the name for Department of War to Department of Defense. As the empire expands we'll eventually rename it the Department of Sunshine and Lollipops.

    The sick thing about it is that it worked/will work quite well.

  • ||

    Yes and as if it needs to be repeated, but he who would sacrafice liberty for security deserves neither. But you probably hold the opinion of some beaurrocratic idiot over Thomas Jefferson I imagine. How blind you must be to think that "National Security" was meant to include "Secrecy." You have your head in the clouds.

  • oaktownadam||

    Phil, that quote is generally attributed to Benjamin Franklin, not Thomas Jefferson.

  • Noah||

    Also, the quote is wrong. Anyone who doesn't sacrifice liberty for security is an idiot. You trade liberty for security by doing all sorts of things, including making contracts, living in a country, etc. The quote is "They that can give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."

  • Apostate Jew||

    Senor Montoya,

    Check your work. For 2008, you're off by a factor of about 50 on earmarks as a percentage of federal outlays. (Do you also do climate change calculations?)

  • Murray||

    Earmarks are orthogonal to spending (which is generally taken to refer to the amount spent, not where, nor by whom), thus anything he does with respect to earmarks cannot make him a hypocrite regarding spending. Q.E.D.

  • ||

    "*I know it's libertarian chic to bag on federal bureaucrats, but most of them are dedicated professionals who know far better where money needs to be spent than congresspeople do.** -- You cannot be serious. A federal bureaucrat is a dedicated professional that knows how to spend MY MONEY? I want to throw up.

  • Brett L||

    But congresscritters can be trusted. Its not like the bureaucrats cans spend more than Congress authorizes.

  • ||

    Nice selective quote. I said they know better than Congresspeople do, which I stand by.

  • ||

    You don't understand the process. Ron Paul's constituents send billions to Washington via taxes. It is his duty to try and get some of it back. The money has been appropriated. If the 14th congressional district(Paul's) doesn't get it some faceless bureaucrat will. As for Ron Paul not speaking up on health care, I suggest readers take a look at his Campaign for Liberty website. It is full of info attacking Obama and the current health care debate.

  • ||

    Actually, it's his duty to fight the money going out in the first place...which is a duty Paul often comes up short on.

    Once he gets to the "I'm just getting it back for my constituents" mentality, then he's really just rationalizing why he's acting like all the other swine in Congress. One of many reasons Ron Paul is full of crap when he claims to be a libertarian.

  • ||

    Earmarks are not authorized by the U.S. Constitution? Contrare my friend. The U.S. Constitution explicitly authorizes Congress to make appropriations to carry out the powers granted to the federal government in Article I. In fact, it is only through such direct appropriations that Congress can have any real control over the purse. Under your prefered system, unelected bureaucrats and unaccountable executive officials have complete control of the purse strings, aside from a general appropriation. Ludicrous. Time for a reading comprehension class...

  • Srp||

    Paul is a flake.

  • Old Mexican||

    "Flake is a flake."

    There. Fixed it.

  • ||

    Flake has no respect for constitutional separation of powers.

  • ||

    Flake has no respect for constitutional separation of powers.

  • ||

    This is essentially the same as Rep. Paul's have it both ways position on free trade; he votes against a fair number of bills, even ones that lead to perfectly free trade but phased in over a number of years and are ambiguously freer than the current law, on the grounds that they aren't unilateral free trade without an agreement.

  • ||

    Right, so managed trade which regulates tea swilling by todlers, which prohibits competition, which provides for forcing socialism upon third world work-forces... those are the systems "that lead to perfectly free trade"... hogwash.

  • Old Mexican||

    Paul's immediate obsession is trained on legalizing Liberty Dollars.

    This reads like a sleazy oversimplification of Ron Paul's position on competing currencies.

  • Brian Doherty||

    LaBeaume is also ignoring comparative advantage and market niches; there are plenty of politicians against health care govt takeover, whereas only he is there to stand for his more arcane, but very important, issue.

  • ||

    I can't help but respesct Ron Paul. I don't think any other politician comes close to him when it comes to sticking to his principles. That being said, I think the left and the neo-cons are trying desperately to divide the libertarian movement in any way they can. These squabbles should be put into context; they are not huge ideological rifts. My guess is that both these politicians have far more in common with eachother than they do with G.W. or Obama.

  • Old Mexican||

    Don't forget the Beltway "libertarians" who are also trying to divide the Libertarian movement...

  • Old Mexican||

    Paul was one of two Republicans to vote against Flake's amendment, specifically on the grounds that it prohibited earmarks.

    The REASON behind this is that prohibiting earmarks would simply give the Executive power to spend the money in any way HE sees fit. Earmarks at least allows the representatives to return some of the taxpayers' money back to his constituents.

    Eliminating earmarks sounds like a great idea for politically naive constituents, but in reality it does NOTHING to lower spending. Rep. Paul is right on this one.

  • Warty||

    Drink!...wait...

  • Bill C||

    Dr. Paul is a physician by vocation, remember - from his homepage, you wouldn't know that this issue looms over Washington one bit. Health care merits only a few addresses in Paul's posted floor statements and press releases from the entire 111th Congress..." He's introduced a number of bills on health care: http://www.ronpaul.com/2009-05.....care-bill/

    Inflation and mis-allocation of resources during boom and bust has done more to hurt people's health care and livelihood than any "scalpel to trim" some Democratic waste of a bill where Republicans don't matter at all would do to help the situation.

    If Rep. Paul can somehow de-mystify the Fed from its perch as a unquestioned oracle than he will have done more--in both his private life as a doctor and public life as a representative--than some hack like John LaBeaume will ever do in his life.

  • TP||

    Can somebody tell me why Ron Paul voted against the Financial Reform Bill that passed today? It did contain the Paul/Grayson Amendment to authorize a GAO audit of the Fed, did it not? All of the work Paul put into trying to get an audit of the Fed and he turned his back on it?

    The Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2009 - Financial Stability Improvement Act of 2009 - Directs the Comptroller General to audit and report to Congress on all actions taken by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (Federal Reserve Board) and the Federal Reserve Banks during the current economic crisis pursuant to specified authority granted under the Federal Reserve Act.
  • TP||

  • Bill C||

    The rest of the bill was a disaster. He explains here: http://blogs.wsj.com/economics.....fed-audit/

  • TP||

    Who cares. Once the Fed is audited, don't you think the rest of that shit will all go out the window? You know why he voted against it.

  • Old Mexican||

    Who cares. Once the Fed is audited, don't you think the rest of that shit will all go out the window? You know why he voted against it.

    Remember Faust?

    "I will give you what you want, in exchange for your soul"

    Ron Paul chose to keep his.

    Satisfied, TP???

  • TP||

    His soul? The Republican Party owns his soul. The Republican Party, the other branch of the Big Government Party.

  • ||

    The republican party owns his soul? Where were you during the Republican primaries? They don't own him, they FEAR him.

  • ||

    I don't think the GOP fears any candidate who can't get co-sponsors on most his bills, doesn't have enough support in his state to win a Senate seat and can't win a meaningful primary in national elections.

  • ||

    Oh, the proto-fascistic, Patriot-Act advocating UCrawford emerges from his hole... run and hide. If you can't grasp that it's RP's ideas which have caught on in the GOP like a widefire, you've been smoking in the men's room for far too long.

  • Mad Max||

    It seems Dr. Paul's position is this: If a bill contains a mixture of bad provisions and good provisions, it is still a bad bill, just as a drink consisting of a mixture of water and poison is still a glass of poison. Drinking what's in the glass because 'it includes some of that water you like so much' would be stupid and harmful.

  • TP||

    Keep making excuses. I'm out. Auditing the Fed is the single most important piece of legislation in 96 years. If you all can't see that, then I doubt you are really Libertarians.

  • ||

    Drink!

    And I will say that I'm not a Libertarian. But I am a libertarian.

  • Mad Max||

    I hope I can count on your support for the omnibus Audit the Fed and Declare Martial Law bill.

  • ||

    TP, you would use the same formula they used. If you don't need a leader, than get off the ship. We do, and we prefer he have morals cut from diamonds. He does, you don't. So don't try to discredit our leader when you yourself have no ground to stand on. He has a track record of protecting liberty and because of that, because of his unwavering dedication to the constitution and ROCK SOLID morals, minds are changing. You are just useless resistance, so go away or get your act together.

  • ||

    OK, Ron Paul is less libertarian than Jeff Flake. That puts at, what #2 or so?

  • Tim Russert||

    But we would still have SLAVERY!

  • LibAnCap||

    How is Ron Paul less Libertarian than Jeff Flake? He explains why he votes for earmarks here: http://www.lewrockwell.com/paul/paul513.html

    Jeff Flake voted for the Patriot Act, Military Commissions Act and the Iraq war. I believe those are way more important Libertarian issues than earmarking money back to his district.

  • Constant||

    I have seen Ron Paul on television several times discussing health care several times.

    He even proposed his own solutions a couple months ago in the House.

    http://www.ronpaul.com/2009-09.....ical-care/

  • Bill C||

    Not necessarily..the LaBeaume/Beltway libertarian crowd would have you believe so. The Ron Paul wing of libertarians believes that decentralization is the best approach towards realizing libertarian goals. The beltway crowd puts their faith in giving power to "market friendly experts" like the Fed, WTO, federal courts etc. to promote liberty. To be fair there's a debate to be had but the Ron Paul wing believes such centralization only legitimizes and centralizes power in another bureaucracy that will later be taken over or by its very bureaucratic nature seek to exercise control over economy/society.

    For example see the commerce clause in the constitution. It was supposed to be a free trade plank between states but since only the supreme court decides what's constitutional in practice the powers have been expanded to actually restrict trade i.e. drugs. Another example is that we literally had an Ayn Rand acolyte in Greenspan but he micromanaged the economy through interest rates to the point he led to the biggest boom/bust in 70+ years!

  • Inkblots||

    Hear, hear. I would have thought that libertarians, of all people, would understand that a government strong enough to give you everything you want is strong enough to take it all away.

  • ||

    Speaking of the Fed, did anyone happen to catch "Law and Order" tonight? I'm only like 20 minutes in, but yikes...

  • ||

    The other 40 minutes changed things . . . a lot.

  • ||

    Earmarks are transparent. This is true. I would like to see how the executive branch money is earmarked to the various agencies. There is your waste. Earmarks are 1% of government spending. We shouldn't send our money to DC anyway. It should go to the states instead of the monstrous federal government. Thus, I don't mind Paul's position. This type of spending is a blip on the radar when it comes to the overall spending picture.

  • Liberty Gal||

    Nah, Ben. Our money shouldn't go to the states instead of the monstrous fed govt. Our money should be ours to freely choose to spend as we wish -- on services, products or charity. Otherwise, income taxes as RP says, are a form of slavery. Hmmm, kind of like non-chattel slavery.

  • Mad Max||

    Bill C,

    Excellent points! In short, Dr. Paul takes the long-term view based on the realities of human nature and the principles of republicanism (small r) and national sovereignty, people like LeBum look just at the short term - 'wow, a commission to promote free trade without the inconveniences of representative government or national sovereignty to slow it down, I can't see how this could *possibly* go wrong!'

    'And further, I know it's libertarian chic to bag on federal bureaucrats, but most of them are dedicated professionals who know far better where money needs to be spent than congresspeople do.'

    Would that include (for example) NEA bureaucrats urging artists to help promote the administration's agenda?

    Incidentally, here is a health-care statement Dr. Paul issued on September 23, which I imagine goes to the heart of the issue much more that whatever crap the Republican leadership is pulling ('don't cut Medicare!'):

    ‘Government has been mismanaging medical care for more than 45 years; for every problem it has created it has responded by exponentially expanding the role of government.

    ‘Points to consider:

    ‘1.) No one has a right to medical care. If one assumes such a right, it endorses the notion that some individuals have a right to someone else’s life and property. This totally contradicts the principles of liberty.

    ‘2.) If medical care is provided by government, this can only be achieved by an authoritarian government unconcerned about the rights of the individual.

    ‘3.) Economic fallacies accepted for more than 100 years in the United States has deceived policy makers into believing that quality medical care can only be achieved by government force, taxation, regulations, and bowing to a system of special interests that creates a system of corporatism.

    ‘4.) More dollars into any monopoly run by government never increases quality but it always results in higher costs and prices.

    ‘5.) Government does have an important role to play in facilitating the delivery of all goods and services in an ethical and efficient manner.

    ‘6.) First, government should do no harm. It should get out of the way and repeal all the laws that have contributed to the mess we have.

    ‘7.) The costs are obviously too high but in solving this problem one cannot ignore the debasement of the currency as a major factor.

    ‘8.) Bureaucrats and other third parties must never be allowed to interfere in the doctor/patient relationship.

    ‘9.) The tax code, including the ERISA laws, must be changed to give everyone equal treatment by allowing a 100% tax credit for all medical expenses.
    Laws dealing with bad outcomes and prohibiting doctors from entering into voluntary agreements with their patients must be repealed. Tort laws play a significant role in pushing costs higher, prompting unnecessary treatment and excessive testing. Patients deserve the compensation; the attorneys do not.

    ‘10.) Insurance sales should be legalized nationally across state lines to increase competition among the insurance companies.

    ‘11.) Long-term insurance policies should be available to young people similar to term-life insurances that offer fixed prices for long periods of time.

    ‘12.) The principle of insurance should be remembered. Its purpose in a free market is to measure risk, not to be used synonymously with social welfare programs. Any program that provides for first-dollar payment is no longer insurance. This would be similar to giving coverage for gasoline and repair bills to those who buy car insurance or providing food insurance for people to go to the grocery store. Obviously, that could not work.

    ‘13.) The cozy relationship between organized medicine and government must be reversed.

    ‘Early on medical insurance was promoted by the medical community in order to boost re-imbursements to doctors and hospitals. That partnership has morphed into the government/insurance industry still being promoted by the current administration.

    ‘14.) Threatening individuals with huge fines by forcing them to buy insurance is a boon to the insurance companies.

    ‘15.) There must be more competition for individuals entering into the medical field. Licensing strictly limits the number of individuals who can provide patient care. A lot of problems were created in 20th century as a consequence the Flexner Report (1910), which was financed by the Carnegie Foundation and strongly supported by the AMA. Many medical schools were closed and the number of doctors was drastically reduced. The motivation was to close down medical schools that catered to women, minorities and especially homeopathy. We continue to suffer from these changes which were designed to protect physician’s income and promote allopathic medicine over the more natural cures and prevention of homeopathic medicine.

    ‘16.) We must remove any obstacles for people seeking holistic and nutritional alternatives to current medical care. We must remove the threat of further regulations pushed by the drug companies now working worldwide to limit these alternatives.

    ‘True competition in the delivery of medical care is what is needed, not more government meddling.’

  • Chrispy||

    "5.) Government does have an important role to play in facilitating the delivery of all goods and services in an ethical and efficient manner."
    I'm an anarchist, so obviously I disagree with that statement. But it seems to me that even a 'minarchist' type libertarian should have some big problems with that. The government has an important role facilitating the delivery of all goods? What do you mean by 'facilitating' and 'important'? If you're just talking about having a system of courts to enforce contracts, I guess that's okay. But what does that have to do with ethics or efficiency? Even if you take it for granted that the government is legitimate and has a right to exist, it should still play no role whatsoever in most, if not all, markets.

  • Mad Max||

    (Should have just linked to the health-care statement, sorry about the lengthy quotes - not that anyone read them, anyway)

  • Mad Max||

    (Or maybe some did)

  • ||

    The odds of anyone reading a post are in inverse relationship to the length.

    So, no, it's wasn't read.

  • Kant feel Pietzsche||

    actually I did.......call me a wonk

  • robc||

    I read it too.

  • Some dude||

    Ron Paul's position on earmarks is hard to put into a soundbite and easy to mischaracterize. Therefore it makes an easy target.

  • Tim Russert||

    Don't forget to mention that he, a so-called Constitutionalist, wants to amend the Constitution!

    ... and we would still have slavery!

  • Chris Matthews||

    I agree! With exclamation points! That tinlgy feeling is back in my leg! Did you know I used to work for Tip O'Neill! I'm still riding that bit of dubious fame! Hundreds of people watch my show on MSNBC!

  • ||

    What's inconsistent with seeking to unhold the U.S. Constitution, while simultaneously seeking to amend it? Respect for the law is good, but the laws must be respectful in order to merit it. Why not support respectful laws?

  • ||

    I think TR was speaking in jest.

  • Mad Max||

  • Old Mexican||

    [Ron Paul's] office told me, via an email statement, that Paul maintains that “that all spending should be earmarked as this provides the greatest transparency [and]…gives constituents an opportunity for input regarding how their tax dollars are spent.” The statement paid obligatory lip service to “drastically” reducing spending.

    Hey, asshole - getting rid of earmarks does NOT reduce spending, it would just give the money to the Executive in a nicely done package, with a lovely bow.

    Lowering spending would take just - LOWERING spending, cutting programs, stop funding unconstitutional departments.

    Getting rid of earmarks does NOT lower spending!

  • ||

    Getting rid of earmarks makes it harder to pass the spending bills. It's the earmarks that bring additional Yes votes when they're shy of a majority.

  • Murray||

    Except Flake supports the bill, so no, that's not it.

  • Warty||

    Did you know that Ron Paul would get rid of Social Security and throw little old ladies into the street?

    ...and we would still have slavery!

  • Mad Max||

    And he would get rid of the Federal Reserve! Without those guys, we would have had bank panics, recessions and depressions!

  • Tim Russert||

    AND slavery!

  • Chony||

    This is why states should have zero power. In fact, states should be abolished, making America one huge nation-state under UN control.

    Oh, and rich white people would be shot.

  • Kant feel Pietzsche||

    Bravo! A sock-puppet within a sock-puppet within a sock-puppet. Like a babushka doll

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    It's actually all sockpuppets down to the cellular level. Matryoshka FTW.

  • ||

    Hell yes, let's get rid of that ponzi scheme Social Security. How is that even an issue of debate here at Reason?

  • Craig||

    instead of taking up his scalpel to trim a behemoth, Dr. Paul is fiddling with the Fed.

    Au contraire. The Fed is the biggest behemoth of all.

  • ||

    "LaBeaume questions Paul's priorities in this and other recent votes. Specifically, he takes the good doctor to task for ...saying next to nothing about health care reform."

    This couldn't be more false. If LaBeaume isn't aware of how hard Ron Paul and his Campaign for Liberty have been fighting against the recent attempts to increase welfarism and mandates in health care, then he doesn't know much of what he's talking about.

  • Rich||

    states should be abolished

    If that would eliminate the all-powerful interstate commerce clause, it may not be such a bad idea.

  • ||

    I, for one, am happy to see great Americans like John Murtha and Robert Byrd micromanaging the budget. They do a much better job than some faceless bureaucrat. And Barney Frank knows way more than any of those so-called economists.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    You ARE being facetious, right?

  • ||

    What happened to all that loot raised in the Ron Paul for President scam campaign?

    Is his organizational "overhead" higher, or lower, than the American Red Cross?

  • Joe||

    I am often dissapointed with Ron Paul's priorities. The Fed issue, at least to me, is way too hard to get across to the voting public. Fighting earmarks make some sense from a PR perspective. While Ron chases Moby Fed, Jeff Flake is attempting to, even if symbolically, make an issue of how Washington sells us down the river, a few million at a time. Flake's approach makes more sense to me.

  • robc||

    You just weighed PR more important than doing the right thing. Maybe you are the one who needs to re-prioritize.

    Stop looking from a PR perspective and look from a leading to totalitarianism perspective. Fuck PR.

  • ||

    AMEN.

  • ||

    "The Fed issue, at least to me, is way too hard to get across to the voting public."

    Wrong. It only seems hard because nobody tried. Besides, as soon as anybody real and normal "gets" it, they get so pissed off. The FED agenda will be the only way a real libertarian will ever get elected. Mark my words.

  • C Man||

    I bet this Lebum guy swears he's the BIGGEST Phish fan.

  • db||

    [*]: Rotten headline allusion explained here.

    Oh, I got it. But it was awful.

  • ||

    I trust Ron Paul far more than that AMNESTY Freak Jeff Flake. I have absolutely had it with Part-time conservatives who let McCain lead them around like they have a bullnose ring in them. He is Phony and one of the reasons Reagan Republican run for the exit doors. Can we get back to the Principles and STAND by them ? Please.

  • ||

    Americans talk about Socialism like it is a word they actually understand. (They don't by the way.) Capitalism is another word they barely understand because of propaganda. Capitalism is an economy where market forces constantly cheapen wages, cut human staff & produce increasingly cheaper products in the name of efficiency without providing a way for humans to live, once wages won't support it's supply of goods. Capitalists will never provide a solution for it either as capitalism is a zero sum game for the workers & not for the leaders. Until of course the slaves get to hungry & tired & they revolt. It is the same story all throughout history.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Are you quoting someone else, or do you actually believe it?

  • C Man||

    Haha, I think that's a Matt Damon quote. He should write standup with some of the stuff he says.

  • ||

    facepalm. you fail.

    Murray Rothbard on Karl Marx: "At least he wasn't a Keynesian!"

  • ||

    At least, excepting the distinctions between his positions in the original "manifesto" and the later editions regarding the manner in which his socialist utopia was to be achieved, Marx was honest about the methods he intended to use to bring civilization down, whereas old Keynes, he shrouded himself in doublespeak.

  • ||

    I feel sad for anyone who thinks an audit of the fed should take the backburner to earmarks. How about instead of eliminating earmarks, eliminate federal spending period! Sounds good to me.

    Ron Paul > flake > rest of congress > obama >fed reserve

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  • ABC||

    His son, Rand, has come out against earmarks. Earmarks are a drop in the bucket, but I agree with Rand and Flake on this one.

  • tony||

    I think that talking a lot about the IRS and the Fed has greater urgency...there's no question why Ron Paul doesn't talk much about the health care reform issue. Then again, isn't it easy to see where Ron Paul would stand on health care, knowing his stance for market-oriented solutions for most of our social problems. I did say 'market-oriented', by the way, NOT 'crony capitalist bureaucrat oriented' solutions, which are not solutions...just creators of more problems!

  • mh||

    It's article for politician. www.mh-chine.com

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