[January 12, 2008 @ 8:06 pm] David Catron

Ron Paul’s primary contribution to the January 5th Republican debate at St. Anselm College was to provide comic relief. Nowhere was that more evident than in his answer to Charlie Gibson’s tendentious question about “why we can’t afford medical insurance for everybody”:

How can we afford a trillion-dollar war and we can’t afford health care? Well, that’s the reason. The resources are going overseas. We’re fighting a trillion- dollar war, and we shouldn’t be doing it. Those resources should be spent back here at home.

This is, as Saddam Hussein might have phrased it, the mother of all false dichotomies. It’s one thing for the nutroots to make wacky statements like this, but this guy is a member of Congress.

Members of the Ron Paul cult imbibe some very powerful Kool-Aid, so the nuttier he gets the more loyal they are.  Fortunately, his association with the “Truthers” and the extremist newsletters reported by TNR will probably destroy his campaign.


  1. J. Hines Says:

    He didn’t blame Iraq for the health care problem. I watched that debate. He tied “spending” on military (iraq war) and foreign aide (military bases around the world) to our ever increasing debt. He then explained how this unbearable debts is deflating the dollar because we simply write treasury notes to cover it and the fed prints up more money causing inflation which as your own website agrees is the real problem. Try to think for yourself.

    I was kind of hoping I had found an organization that is interested in solving the problem until the very first entry on your blog is politically biased nonsense. Let me guess, your pulling for Fred Thompson. I won’t bother to read further.

  2. M.Mac Says:

    David Catron really doesn’t do his homework. Does he? I am a Ron Paul supporter, and individual and not part of any cult. What Ron Paul is trying to educate you the American people about is the unsound monetary system that has brought us to almost $9 trillion in debt, an ponzi-scheme social security system that is destroying the earning (take-home) ability of our youth. Also, the wasteful, pork-barrel spending that the Feds have allowed to go unchecked.

    The true cause of inflation is the Federal Reserve System that has not only brought up the obscene cost of medical care, but has also brought about inflation of the cost on everything else — ie., housing, cars, food, etc., etc.

    I wish Mr. Cantron could tell me how he weights and measures the value of a dollar?

    Also, Ron Paul has truly been the only candidate to speak against the unfair trade agreements, GATT, NAFTA, CAFTA, et al. These agreements are bringing our country to its knees, as well as the funding for healthcare, education, incarceration, etc., of all the illegal aliens.

    Try putting your thought processes in order. Or, as they say, “putting one foot in front of the other.”
    I would recommend starting with reading Frederic Bastiat’s “The Law” for an excellent primer.

  3. Colin N Says:

    With all due respect, I love the idea of this website. But, if you cannot learn about the presidential candidates before you post blogs assaulting their credibility and ideas, then your blog and website are not very respectable.

    If you look at this, and watch the short clip, you will understand Ron Paul’s stance.


  4. Steve Says:

    I’m solidly in your camp on the approach to healthcare in this country, but I would say that it is pretty disingenous of you to immediately alienate what would otherwise be your strongest group of supporters with your comments about Ron Paul. You apparently need to do your homework on his positions and his integrity to the principles you appear to embrace before making such a puerile attack upon him and his followers. The statement, which was intended to contrast the severe imbalance of national spending priorities (under pressure of timed debate responses) may not have been as clear as he intended, but after following this man and his activities for the past 10 years I can say that there is nobody in Congress today who is as consistently principled and who has taken more action to actually change the terrible direction this country has taken during the past several administrations. Once you have done your homework, do another blog identifying which of his positions identifies him as worthy of your scorn.

  5. Marie White Says:

    Ditto all of the above – Editor do your homework!

  6. Rich Paul Says:

    Wow, I used to recommend this site to people. Didn’t realize you were a “big government conservative”.

    As for the facts of the matter, Ron Paul is correct, though your characterization of what he said makes it appear otherwise.

    Basic economics. In order for the government to waste a trillion dollars a year on it’s insane foreign policy, it has to take that money from somebody. There are three ways it can do so. Any of them would effect the ability of citizens to pay for medical care … or anything else!

    The first is to take the money by force. This is called taxation, and is the most commonly used scheme. You see somebody with something you want, and you just take it. When normal people do it, it’s called theft.
    When you steal somebody’s earnings, they no longer have them, and cannot spend them on things they need, including health care.

    The second is to borrow it. This was the favorite method of the Keynesian economists. They didn’t realize that there was (when they were writing) a limited amount of money in the world, and if the government borrowed it to pay welfare (to people or to a foreign nation which never paid a dollar in U.S. taxes), then businesses would not be able to borrow it in order to expand their operations. Thus, the levels of production and employment are depressed, and the society becomes poorer. This makes it harder to do things that you actually want to do … like pay for your health care.

    The third way is inflation. This is the most subtle scheme, and is why I had to put the caveat above about the time when Keynes was writing. He never imagined in his wildest fever-dreams that he could con people into working for PAPER! But like all actions, dumping huge quantities of paper currency onto the market has consequences. One of them is that as you dump it, you create a wave of illusory prosperity. People spend more money on consumption, and worry less about savings, because they think that the money will keep flowing forever. It doesn’t help that dumping money on the market also depresses interest rates. This reinforces the euphoric effect, since even those who still want to save won’t be able to get a decent return, and it’s hard to turn down a 2% loan.

    So this is the “boom” part of the cycle. Like crystal meth, it feels good at the time. I’m sure that the roaring 20’s were a very pleasant time to live, and I know that the 90’s were a great time to be in the computer business, and the early 2000’s were a great time to be in the real estate market. But inflation is very much like an addiction. In order to “keep the good times rolling”, you have to resort to larger and larger doses of inflation to get the same effect. And again like addiction, there comes a time, sooner or later, when the therapeutic does approaches the lethal.

    This can best be imagined by finding a history book, and looking at the pictures from the 1920’s in Germany. There will be pictures of people going to the grocery store with wheelbarrows full of nearly worthless Fiat currency to buy their groceries for the day. The is caused when the illusion that inflation is temporary fades, and people start realizing that the longer they hold on to their money, the less it will be worth. They start trying to buy any physical goods, at any price, in hopes that they will be able to salvage something. The Germans called it ‘the flight into real values”. We can see contemporary examples in Zimbabwe, as well, where inflation has exceeded 14,000%. The New York Times (hardly a hotbed of economic insight, but even a stopped clock is right twice a day) writes:

    It appears, however, that not even an unchallenged autocrat can repeal the laws of supply and demand.

    One month after Mr. Mugabe decreed just that, commanding merchants nationwide to counter 10,000-percent-a-year hyperinflation by slashing prices in half and more, Zimbabwe’s economy is at a halt.

    Obviously, we’re nowhere near that point now. But here are some thinking points for you.

    The price of gold is at an all time high. None the less, in the Roman Empire, you could walk into any tailer shop with an ounce of gold, and get a fine toga, a leather belt, and a nice pair of sandals. Today, you can sell an oz of gold (for $900), and walk into any tailer shop, and get a fine suit, a leather belt, and a nice pair of shoes. If you graph the price of gold against the price of oil, you’ll find that they are keeping pace pretty nicely. This implies that their values are not rising: the value of the dollar is falling.

    We are spending about $1Trillion (with a T) every year on our foreign policy. Since our GNP is $12Trillion dollars, that means that every year we waste the earnings of one month trying to make the rest of the world civilized. As a result, our own civilization faces an existential threat, not from invasion by third world nations (describe to me the logistics, if Iran or Iraq decided to invade America!) but from economic collapse. No house of cards can stand forever, and we have so little of the free market left that I have no idea how long it will take us to put Humpty Dumpty back together again. If the left even allows it … in 10 years, we may well be arguing about socialized food.

    Oh, I forgot … we already have socialized food. It’s called ‘agricultural subsidy’, and most of the Republican candidates (except, of course, for the one who understands economics), think they’re wonderful, and should continue forever. Along with the Department of Education, high taxes, (they do give some lip service to cutting taxes, but never admit that they’ll have to cut spending, to avoid imposing the worst taxation without representation in history on the next generation), and the rest of the “big government conservative” mantra.

    Anyway, you might want to study some economics. Sometimes we thing people are goofy because they know something we don’t.

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