Since Wilson's ego-driven obsession after World War I, we have witnessed an increasing proclivity among elected officials at the Federal level to pursue fame in half-baked, yet always pretentious, efforts to remake human societies both at home and abroad. Some of these endeavors--such as Wilson's League of Nations--would have compromised the sovereign independence won by the original 13 States on the battlefield of the Revolution. Others, such as John F. Kennedy's "New Frontier" and Lyndon Johnson's "Great Society," sought to force new sociological norms on Americans--pretending to elevate local society by suppressing the, once evident, rich cultural variations in values & heritage among our respective States and communities.
While the Coolidge & Reagan Administrations may have offered brief respites in this almost century old phenomenon; the dawn of the Clinton/Bush era brought an acceleration of the frenetic pursuit of fame & power through social or political innovation. We are no longer "Slouching Towards Gomorrah." Rather, we witness the headlong pursuit of ever more fantastic, ever more dogmatic, forms of social engineering. And yet almost none of the great "reforms"--the wild-eyed initiatives of our politicians, often little more than efforts to copy the failed policies of other lands, or other eras;--almost none of the great landmarks of legislation or Executive initiative, of recent years, has had any basis in the powers actually delegated in our written Constitution.
Since the Federal Government of the United States is entirely the creature of that Constitution; has no function outside that Constitution; has no legal existence, no claim to respect, allegiance, duty or obedience, outside that Constitution; few of these Acts or initiatives have moral or legal authority; few, any better than so many nails, driven into the coffin awaiting the last remains of the once free Republics, known as the United States of America. Considering the awesome power and wealth that Americans have achieved, this is comparable, historically, to the fall of Rome. Yet while Rome took many Centuries to destroy, it appears that our homegrown amalgam of excess and stupidity may work the same result in less than one; while the example of an unrestrained abuse of political power here, among a people who should have known better, may make the elevation of Caligula's horse to the Senate there, appear little more than innocent fun.
This example of unrestrained abuse of position, of course, has not been lost on the generations of young Americans who have witnessed it. That is another subject, to be sure, but a closer look at the unfortunate "cutting" of moral corners in American society--and the psychology of the "corner-cutters"--might reveal some interesting correlations. Whatever else, the example has elevated no one's character; has inspired few to seek corrective measures; has sapped much of the reflective patriotic fervor, which once punctuated our public gatherings and motivated our higher aspirations. Those who have remained aware of whence we came and whither we are headed, have almost lost hope for a return to those qualities in our public life, which once characterized the word "American."
There is, indeed, a growing sense that time is running out on the American Republic; that the changing demographics, more than a generation into an immigration policy, which openly and arbitrarily favors the least congruous immigrants over those who would more easily fit into our rooted communities and societies, has brought us to an era where fewer and fewer among us understand both the values and ethos of the Founding Fathers. This poses the danger that our losses may soon be irreversible. Moreover, it is obvious that increasing numbers of those, who still do understand that ethos, actually oppose the American tradition. Can they be reclaimed? Obviously not by any politician seeking to be all things to all men.
The 2008 election, then, may be our true "Now or never," moment. The next 16+ months may literally determine whether America, as we have known her; as she was vouchsafed to our generation by honorable men who went before us; lives or dies!
The present quality of our politics has degenerated even from that of the 20th Century--when politicians would verbally rationalize twisted Constitutional bases for programs--to that of the thirty second sound bite, where our written Constitution is never mentioned.
Congressman Ron Paul summons us back to the higher standard of days when rational statesmen offered rational justification for whatever they advocated; where any program was expected to pass stringent Constitutional muster; where an office holder was expected to honor his oath of Constitutional fidelity--his solemn commitment, before the Almighty, to all that was honorable;--a personally defining commitment, by which he expected to be judged both in this life and hereafter. Ron Paul speaks to our honor, no less than to our reason; to our patriotism and integrity; to our continuity as a people, rather than to any selfish purpose of the moment.
The Founding Fathers never intended the Constitutional Federation, which they established, to act as "Big Brother" to the varied and distinct societies that grew up in the several States; not as a problem solver or wet nurse for special interests, nor as an appeaser for the imagined grievances of any faction or community; nor ever as a yoke to restrain the free expression of a people. The advance in the role of Government has been inextricably intertwined with the decline in the character and integrity of our politicians. Men without integrity or honor have found it impossible to resist the unholy demands of those who seek special favor and subsidies--often doled out to reward human failure and misconduct, which have correspondingly grown exponentially. Nor have such men been at all unwilling to impose Governmental restraints on the freedom of others, where they sensed that votes might be garnered, or political debts repaid.
It is precisely because Ron Paul stands for the proposition that the Constitution must be honored; that when in doubt as to legality, you do not legislate; that the wise admonitions of Washington and Jefferson reflected truth, not for a moment in time or a particular century, but for the ages; that the "corner-cutters," the rationalizers for political excess, fear him. It is because Ron Paul has consistently voted his conscience despite enormous pressure to go along with the schemes of lesser men, serving ends other than the Common Defense and General Welfare of the American people, that there are those today, who would exclude him from debates among his party's candidates for President. The special interests, as the cowards and sycophants who go along with those special interests, always feel threatened by an honest man, who stands for truth in the face of the endless trimming and subterfuge of modern politics.
Ron Paul has proven his mettle, again and again, even when assailed over the most emotionally charged issues. Over and over again, he has stood against wasteful spending for unconstitutional domestic programs, which others--seeking to humor powerful voting blocks--were racing to endorse. He has stood against foreign aid, where politicians have used our money to wrap themselves in the mantle of pseudo "Charity." He has opposed foreign policy initiatives not in accordance with the wise policy, which Washington and Jefferson laid out for us; that which once made us the most respected nation on earth; not because it was weak or isolationist--it was never either--but because it treated all other nations with respect, demanding respect back, while at the same time calling for sufficient force, when necessary, to "punish the first insult" to our rights or independence.
In commentary after commentary, Ron Paul has never hesitated to address the controversial underlying factors, that others sought to obscure or deny; to put the issues of the day in the context of reality, and thus expose the intellectual nakedness of many of his contemporaries.
It is not that we always agree with Ron Paul. In a free society, honest and honorable men will often differ. So let us clear the air: In the first Republican Presidential debate, Dr. Paul stated that the CIA had placed the Shah on the throne of Iran in the 1950s. He was mistaken. The Shah, a friend and ally, who respected our rights to property and the fulfillment of contracts, had been on the throne for some time. When an anti-American Socialist demagogue, in the Iranian parliament, attempted a coup against the Monarchy, certain CIA personnel were given credit for providing logistical support for the suppression of the coup--in the confusion, getting the word out to tribes loyal to the Shah, that they needed to act, or they would lose their country. That help--extremely limited in scope--was clearly in our interest, as the demagogue behind the coup had openly challenged our rights in the region. But that was over fifty years ago, and is not an issue in 2007.
Secondly, while we have long had doubts as to whether the Federal Reserve does more good than harm in the economy, and would probably have voted against its Charter, had we been in the Senate in 1913, when it was created; we feel that Dr. Paul's new bill, to abolish the Federal Reserve, to be unwise at this time. While the "Fed" may be an "enabler" for some very unsound policies in Washington; it is, in fact and theory, the property of the private banking system. And given the coming crisis from an inflation, already in place as a result of the incredible spending by the Bush Administration, now just beginning to show up in the price structure; abolishing the "Fed" might cause a panic. It is not that the "Fed" can necessarily resolve anything; but a perception that it might be able to, could alleviate some of the 'jitters,' which must be expected.
Neither a half century old disagreement, nor a difference of opinion on the Federal Reserve, offer the slightest reason not to support a man, who stands out from the crowd as the one true voice of the traditional America that American Conservatives, Libertarians and Moderates would preserve. Ron Paul is clearly the man for the job!
The public outcry over the Kennedy/Bush/Graham immigration bill has provided a 'wake-up call' for millions of middle-class Americans, who had been lulled into political indifference by a combination of factors, some devious, some incidental, which have defined public discourse on a wide variety of issues, over the past half century. This has heightened the level of distrust for those in leading positions in both major parties, even as it has stimulated a new awareness of issues that the Left has sought for generations to bury. In this setting, we have the best opportunity to effectively 'reshuffle' the political deck--to change the political climate--that we have had in a very long time.
Americans have always had a soft spot in their hearts for men of principle whom they know to be on their side-- regardless of occasional differences. The contrast between true men of principle and the political hacks, who seek office not to serve but for personal advantage, is sufficiently acute, that even in ordinary times, the man of principle can expect a better return for campaign dollars than can an opportunist, who may have more money to spend, yet must overcome the skepticism of thoughtful voters towards a typical politician. But these are not ordinary times! Now, a far greater percentage of the public than usual feels a sense of betrayed interests; of a heritage and duty betrayed by many in Federal Office. Ron Paul, so clearly a man of principle, can be our rallying point.
In the very crescendo of abuse that one may expect from special interests, threatened as the Paul candidacy gains momentum, there will be additional opportunity. Dr. Paul has already shown that he can and will stand his ground, thus setting in motion that powerful species of emotional appeal, which Hollywood captured so well in the James Stewart movie, "Mr. Smith Goes To Washington." Americans have often rallied to the courageous underdog, the man of principle who stands fast against the bullies of this world!
To win, Ron Paul needs two things: The continued intelligent articulation of truths, which have brought him this far, and the dedicated support of those Americans who understand & believe in what he has to say; a partnership, of sorts, among those of us who would be true to the principles to which the Founding Fathers dedicated their "lives, their fortunes & their sacred honor." Can we meet the test? The future of America is the issue.