Series By Dan Beaulieu
– Ron Paul
One thing is certain of Dr. Ron Paul, he is not a sound-bite candidate. That is, he often speaks over the heads of voters which causes a lack of understanding. It is in my personal opinion that Ron Paul cannot be understood in the 30 seconds allocated to him in debates. His ideas must be studied; however, once one does understand Dr. Paul, they often stick around.
For this reason I present to you my series:
Understanding Ron Paul
Eliminate Five Departments and Save Taxpayer a Trillion Dollars
In every area which our society has decided to make the province of government, or where government itself has decided to intervene, it has distorted the free market, added costs that do not reflect economic reality, excluded competition, established political fiefdoms and created no-bid crony capitalism at great expense to the taxpayer.
Ron Paul has identified this problem and promised to follow his ideological consistent goal of working to allow free market forces to regulate or, where that is not feasible, to place the decision-making and control at lowest level of governmental unit closest to those who are affected by and can provide input into the decisions that impact citizens’ lives.
The five departments Ron Paul has decided to get rid of are Energy, Commerce, Interior, Education, and Housing and Urban Development along with reasonable cuts in military spending that do nothing to make America more secure, but instead make America less secure because the costs are unsustainable, wasteful, counter-productive or not in the interests of national security.
The Department of Energy held secret meeting prior to the invasion of Iraq, and the D.C. court decided there was no requirement for them to notify the public as to what planning was taking place. The Department of Energy is being run by oil interests and allows oil corporations -private businesses- to determine the actions of government in manner that promotes the interests of Big Oil. As more and more corporations form agreements with government behind closed doors or via special interest political contributions, the private individual always ends up suffering from higher prices. If the market suddenly made feasible an alternative fuel, does anyone believe oil corporations would not work through the Department of Energy to stymie new innovation?
In the Department of Commerce, bigger businesses often lobby for rules and regulations that prevent smaller businesses from being able to compete by stifling competition. According to former Commerce Secretary Robert Mosbacher, the Department of Commerce (DOC) is "nothing more than a hall closet where you throw in everything that you don't know what to do with." The General Accounting Office reported that DOC "faces the most complex web of divided authorities" of any government agency, sharing its "missions with at least 71 federal departments, agencies and offices." This department has a budget of $8 billion and 34,000 employees. Money via grants are not based on market efficacy, but instead are divvied out according to political considerations that are extremely wasteful.
Everyone says Ron Paul is against education because he wants to get rid of the Department of Education, but this is a lie. His goal is to leave the maximum amount of money at the local level so that individual school boards can decide how to best run their school without interference from Washington D.C. where bureaucrats devise unfunded mandates and are thousands of miles removed from the challenges a community faces in relation to educating their children.
The Department of the Interior has a budget of $12.2 billion and employs 70,000 employees at 2,400 different locations. None of the functions of this department are based on the constitution, accordingly, it creates many rules that deny property owners the right to use and develop their property because in some case a gnat that is on the endangered species list has flourished on someone’s property that has been designated a wet land. If government wants to save a gnat, then the government should be required to pay the landowner and assume ownership as opposed to denying him the use of his land without him any compensation whatsoever. This is an unconstitutional attack on private property that serves as the basis for a free society in which individual liberty and economic liberty are once again united.
The last department Dr. Ron Paul advocated abolishing is the Department of Housing and Urban Development. We all remember the individual who dressed as a pimp to get advice from ACORN on how to avoid paying taxes. Many ACORN employees were paid through HUD. Their budget is at $100 million and yet they have been unable to provide requested statistical information that shows any program efficacy at all. With HUD taxpayer money goes to developers who are politically connected, very rich, extremely expensive construction corporations. Ron Paul is not against public housing, but the way this program is administered and the extent to which it is politically corrupted. The end result is that less homes are built for the needy and a well-meaning program does nothing more then serve as a means of corporate welfare that helps the rich.
Ron Paul would abolish any federal agency whose powers were not 'enumerated' in the US Constitution. The "enumerated powers" clause of the US Constitution, specifically Article 1 Section 8 defines the powers of the US Congress. These "enumerated powers" do not authorize the creation of certain federal agencies, specifically the Dept. of Education, HUD, and many others. Ron Paul believes that each federal agency must be looked at through the lens of the enumerated powers clause of the US Constitution, and if that agency is not specifically authorized then it must be abolished.
These departments have been allowed to create regulations that violate the U.S. Constitution, deny due process and destroy individuals’ private property rights. These agencies stand the objective of law on its head because it leaves employers in the position of never knowing if they are subject to lawsuits because administrative judges interpretation of arcane rules hidden in ever-growing mountains of government regulation. These rules contain within themselves the full force of law without ever having to stand review of any legislative body.
Without any constraint on government and allowing it to use the Commerce Clause to expand its influence into every facet of human endeavor thereby establishing an excuse for unlimited government, Americans have found they have become poorer and less free. The decision we now face is unlimited government or an unprecedented role back of government tyranny and abuses.
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