Ron Paul's Farewell

While President Obama was side stepping questions during a rare press conference on Wednesday, a more significant, honest speech was being delivered in the same city a short distance from the East Room.

Ron Paul was delivering his farewell address on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives. The full text of his speech can be found here:

Dr. Paul has honorably served the country at home and abroad as a member of the U.S. Air Force , a doctor, an author and a member of Congress. He has been among the most under-rated politicians in American history. His brand of bold honesty mixed with his trademark courage to speak up for his convictions have earned him the respect of all his peers and set a high standard for all Congressmen to come.

The House of Representatives will simply never be the same once Dr. Paul walks out for the last time. Justin Amash (MI-3), Jimmy Duncan, Jr (TN-2), Tom McClintock (CA-4), Scott Garrett (NJ-5) and Walter B. Jones (NC-3) are among those who will keep Paul's memory alive in the House while his son, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, and Arizona Senator-Elect Jeff Flake will carry libertarian values in the Senate. However, no one representing libertarian values in the House or Senate today has the mix of experience, passion and charisma that comes naturally to Ron Paul. Hopefully, many of his values will outlive his tenure.

Here are some particularly striking phrases from his final address on the House floor:

  • "My goals in 1976 were the same as they are today: promote peace and prosperity by a strict adherence to the principles of individual liberty."
  • "In spite of my efforts, the government has grown exponentially, taxes remain excessive, and the prolific increase of incomprehensible regulations continues. Wars are constant and pursued without Congressional declaration, deficits rise to the sky, poverty is rampant and dependency on the federal government is now worse than any time in our history. All this with minimal concerns for the deficits and unfunded liabilities that common sense tells us cannot go on much longer. "
  • "One side doesn’t give up one penny on military spending, the other side doesn’t give up one penny on welfare spending, while both sides support the bailouts and subsidies for the banking and corporate elite."
  • "If liberty is what we claim it is- the principle that protects all personal, social and economic decisions necessary for maximum prosperity and the best chance for peace- it should be an easy sell. Yet, history has shown that the masses have been quite receptive to the promises of authoritarians which are rarely if ever fulfilled."
  • "Freedom, private property, and enforceable voluntary contracts, generate wealth."
  • "Confidence sometimes lasts longer than deserved."
  • "Most of our wealth today depends on debt."
  • "It is good that material abundance is a result of liberty but if materialism is all that we care about, problems are guaranteed."
  • "We need an intellectual awakening."
  • "The rules of the market will extract its pound of flesh and it won’t be pretty."
  • "Everyone claims support for freedom. But too often it’s for one’s own freedom and not for others."
  • "Some decide what and whose freedoms are to be limited. These are the politicians whose goal in life is power. Their success depends on gaining support from special interests."
  • "We allowed our leaders to concentrate on the material abundance that freedom generates, while ignoring freedom itself. Now we have neither, but the door is open, out of necessity, for an answer."
  • "The economy is over regulated, overtaxed and grossly distorted by a deeply flawed monetary system."
  • "Why can’t people understand that war always destroys wealth and liberty?"
  • "Why do so many accept the deeply flawed principle that government bureaucrats and politicians can protect us from ourselves without totally destroying the principle of liberty?"
  • "Why is it is claimed that if people won’t or can’t take care of their own needs, that people in government can do it for them?"
  • "Trust yourself, not the government. Too many people have for too long placed too much confidence and trust in government and not enough in themselves."
  • " one claims it’s permissible to go into one’s neighbor’s house and tell them how to behave, what they can eat, smoke and drink or how to spend their money. Yet, rarely is it asked why it is morally acceptable that a stranger with a badge and a gun can do the same thing in the name of law and order."
  • "Government in a free society should have no authority to meddle in social activities or the economic transactions of individuals. Nor should government meddle in the affairs of other nations. All things peaceful, even when controversial, should be permitted."
  • "Due to the ill-advised drug war and the endless federal expansion of the criminal code we have over 6 million people under correctional suspension, more than the Soviets ever had, and more than any other nation today, including China."
  • "Too many people believe government handouts are free, like printing money out of thin air, and there is no cost. That deception is coming to an end. The bills are coming due and that’s what the economic slowdown is all about."
  • "Our Constitution, which was intended to limit government power and abuse, has failed."
  • "If the people are unhappy with the government performance it must be recognized that government is merely a reflection of an immoral society that rejected a moral government of constitutional limitations of power and love of freedom."
  • "We cannot expect a Federal government controlled school system to provide the intellectual ammunition to combat the dangerous growth of government that threatens our liberties."
  • "The internet will provide the alternative to the government/media complex that controls the news and most political propaganda. This is why it’s essential that the internet remains free of government regulation."
  • "Achieving legislative power and political influence should not be our goal. Most of the change, if it is to come, will not come from the politicians, but rather from individuals, family, friends, intellectual leaders and our religious institutions."
  • "The #1 responsibility for each of us is to change ourselves with hope that others will follow."
  • "When seeking office is done for personal aggrandizement, money or power, it becomes useless if not harmful."
  • "To achieve liberty and peace, two powerful human emotions have to be overcome. Number one is 'envy' which leads to hate and class warfare. Number two is 'intolerance' which leads to bigoted and judgmental policies. "
  • "The best chance for achieving peace and prosperity, for the maximum number of people world-wide, is to pursue the cause of LIBERTY. If you find this to be a worthwhile message, spread it throughout the land."

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