NO ADVERTISING, GOVERNMENT OR CORPORATE FUNDING

  • Latest News
  • Pitch a Story
  • Work with a Journalist
  • Join the Blog Squad
  • Afghanistan
  • Africa
  • Asia
  • Baltimore
  • Canada
  • Egypt
  • Europe
  • Latin America
  • Middle East
  • Russia
  • Economy
  • Environment
  • Health Care
  • Military
  • Occupy
  • Organize This
  • Reality Asserts Itself
  • US Politics
  • Ron Paul says it's time to end the empire


    Paul Jay interviews Ron Paul from the "Rally for the Republic" -   September 3, 2008
    Members don't see ads. If you are a member, and you're seeing this appeal, click here

    Audio

    Share to Facebook Share to Twitter




    I appreciate immensely The Real News reports. You report news that is covered nowhere else. - Elizabeth Sheppard
    Log in and tell us why you support TRNN

    Transcript

    Ron Paul says it's time to end the empirePAUL JAY, SENIOR EDITOR: Hello, and welcome to The Real News coverage of the Republican National Convention in Minneapolis, St. Paul. Joining us today is Republican Congressman Ron Paul, a leading libertarian from Texas well known for his views on limited government, low taxes, and free markets. He was also the only Republican presidential candidate who opposed the Iraq War. Congressman Paul now heads up Campaign for Liberty and comes to us live from Minneapolis, where he's hosting not a counter-convention, only a celebration: Rally for the Republic. Congressman, thank you for joining us. You've critiqued the neocons for going to war in Iraq, for having a vision of an American empire based on military might. My question is: Is John McCain a maverick or a neocon? And how does your vision of foreign policy differ from McCain's?

    REP. RON PAUL (R-TX), CAMPOIGN FOR LIBERTY: Well, he's closer to being a neocon. I guess you have to define what a maverick is. Sometime if you say that John McCain is a maverick because he joins liberals on programs like McCain-Feingold and joins the Democrats when he votes for higher taxes, I guess you can define that as a maverick. But his foreign policy is very close to the neocons'. He is very militaristic and believes that we should have more troops overseas, not less. So his foreign policy would be 100 percent opposite of mine.

    P. JAY: Explain a little bit about your basic positions. I mean, I understand you would actually close American military bases around the world and bring troops home. That's a very different vision than the last 50, 60 years of US foreign policy.

    R. PAUL: Yes, and the last 50 or 60 years has given us nothing but grief when you think about Korea, and Vietnam, and Persian Gulf wars, and Iraqi wars, and Afghan, and on and on. And it literally has contributed to our bankruptcy. I mean, we're spending close to $1 trillion a year maintaining our empire, and it will come to an end. Just as the economic system collapsed in the Soviet system, the system here is going to collapse, because we can't be maintaining this with our ability to pay for it.

    P. JAY: Now, the Republican Party has been pretty close to insulting with you over the convention. You didn't get to speak; you've even had your movement on the floor limited. Why are you positioning the Campaign for Liberty as something fighting for the soul of the Republican Party? And let me just add to that question: there's millions of Americans that would agree with you on your foreign-policy point of view, on your issue of defense of civil liberties within the Constitution, but who don't agree with you on smaller government and some of your domestic economic positions. Isn't there a much broader front to be had here than within the Republican Party?

    R. PAUL: Oh, sure, but they have to come together for the one issue. Some who would be considered liberals that say they like my position of limited government, civil liberties, and less intervention overseas have to realize that that kind of force that they object to is the same kind of force that's used illegitimately to redistribute wealth in a socialist welfare system. So it's my rejection of the use of force to police the world or to run somebody's personal life, it is a rejection of that that makes me reject the notion that a government should tell you how to spend your money, and what you do with it, and whether you can be involved in Internet gambling, and making these personal choices. So I believe I'm just making a consistent defense of personal liberty.

    P. JAY: But why still from within the Republican Party? It seems like the Republican Party wants to distance themselves greatly from you.

    R. PAUL: Yeah, that is true. It's because Republicans profess to believe more closely to these views than, say, the Democrats do. And I guess it's a practical thing. I've been a ten-term Republican congressman, so I've remained a Republican congressman. So the vehicle is the use of the Republican Party. But if there's a true revolutionary spirit going on in this country—and I believe it is—it will affect all the political parties and all levels of government. So we're hoping to effect change everywhere. But currently one of the practical things that we're doing is working within the Republican Party. But there's nothing sacred about that. And others chose not to work in the Republican Party. But so long as they're true to these principles, it doesn't bother me very much.

    P. JAY: What do you think of McCain's choice of Palin? It turns out that Palin in fact was not against the "bridge to nowhere" project. That seems to be rhetoric. And in fact she took the federal money—just decided not to build the bridge because it was costing too much. What does this tell us about McCain's decision-making?

    R. PAUL: Well, I think in some ways it was pretty shrewd politically, because she appeals to conservatives, especially social conservatives, so it didn't hurt him politically. But I don't think it has any real impact. She's not going to be a vice president—if she were to be elected—as strong as, say, a Cheney, to drive foreign policy. So even if she did come around to agreeing [with] what I'm saying about foreign policy, I doubt very much if she could slow John McCain down. So it's a tool and a technique to help him win the election, and in a way a pretty smart trick.

    P. JAY: Do you see any difference between the foreign policy between McCain and Obama?

    R. PAUL: No, I don't see any difference at all. Actually, Obama was more aggressive and first on in sending more troops to Afghanistan, and then McCain said, "Yeah, okay," even though Obama wants to come across as getting troops home on a time-line from Iraq—so does the administration at the moment, or at least the Iraqi government does. But he's not talking about closing down all the bases in Iraq and closing down the biggest embassy in the world in Baghdad. And he strongly supports expanding our role and sending more money and influence into Georgia, which is there to protect the oil pipeline from the Caspian Sea down to Turkey. So there really isn't any difference. He's never said [anything] about bringing troops home from Europe or Japan or Korea. And there's a big concern about our deficit. And we use about a trillion dollars a year to maintain this empire. And the American people aren't offered a choice: their foreign policy are essentially the same, and we need a lot different foreign policy if we expect to really eventually have a strong national defense.

    P. JAY: One final question, on your economic policies. How would the free market deal with the climate-change crisis? If you take the coal industry, which supplies the majority of American electricity and is said to provide perhaps 30, 40 percent of carbon emissions in the United States, how is there a free-market solution to reducing the effects of coal with any kind of time-frame scientists tell us, which is we have a 10-, 15-year window?

    R. PAUL: Well, the free market is very protective of the environment. And if coal is a pollutant—and some people would argue with you—if it is, they don't have a right to pollute your air or my air or anybody else's. But the one thing the government could do is get out of the way, because we do know a source of energy which is cheap and clean, and that's nuclear. But the government prevents us from doing that. They inhibit the development of nuclear power. At the same time, they don't do anything to stop pollutants in the air, and they give these carbon permission and all these things, or they go and subsidize corn to make ethanol, which is not economically feasible. You need the market to operate to tell you which is the most inexpensive, and right now it's probably nuclear energy. If it is ethanol, they ought to recognize the fact that the best source of ethanol is not corn. Sugar cane is a lot better. But the best is hemp. And what do we do? We go to jail if we raise hemp. So there's a lot the government could do, you know, dealing with these issues of the environment and pollution.

    P. JAY: In a case of national emergency, be it—let's assume the scientists are correct about climate change crisis, it is a severe national emergency, or somebody were to attack America, which I guess you would consider a national emergency. Certainly there you see a role for strong government.

    R. PAUL: Yes, but strong government doesn't mean that we have troops all around the world, because that's what precipitates, you know, our crisis. So, yes, there's a role to be played, but if there is a significant problem, you might look at how much hydrocarbons the Pentagon burns. And out of 216 countries in the world, I think they're about the 46th largest country in the world, and they're burning all this oil. And then we go over there to try to keep our energy flowing in there. And we go over to the Middle East and cause wars. Dropping all these bombs certainly hasn't been an advantage to the environment.

    P. JAY: Congressman, thank you very much for your time.

    R. PAUL: Thank you.

    DISCLAIMER:

    Please note that TRNN transcripts are typed from a recording of the program; The Real News Network cannot guarantee their complete accuracy.


    Comments

    Our automatic spam filter blocks comments with multiple links and multiple users using the same IP address. Please make thoughtful comments with minimal links using only one user name. If you think your comment has been mistakenly removed please email us at contact@therealnews.com

    Comments


    Latest Stories


    The Bundy Ranch Standoff Demonstrates Values Shared by Corporations and the Far Right
    The Resegregation of American Schools
    The Modern History of Venezuela, Why Still So Much Crime? - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (7/9)
    What Role Has Russia Played in Eastern Ukraine?
    Can Johns Hopkins Afford to Pay A Living Wage? (2/2)
    University Sit-In Targets World's Largest Private Coal Company
    The Modern History of Venezuela and the Need for a Post-Oil Economy - Edgardo Lander on RAI (6/9)
    Can Johns Hopkins Afford to Pay A Living Wage? (1/2)
    One Percent of Environmentalists Killings Lead to Convictions
    Investigation Finds Former Ukraine President Not Responsible For Sniper Attack on Protestors
    The Modern History of Venezuela from 1973 to the Caracazo Massacre - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (3/9)
    Ukraine Transitional Gov't Moves Militarily To Reclaim Seized Buildings
    IPCC Report Flawed By Narrow Focus on Carbon Emissions
    The Modern History of Venezuela: The Bolivarian Revolution - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (5/9)
    Obama Signs Directives to Reduce the Gender Wage Gap
    Eastern Ukraine Lacks Political Representation in Kiev
    Demystifying the Role of Mitigation in the Most Recent IPCC Report
    Hypersurveillance State Won't Prevent Another Boston Marathon Bombing
    The Modern History of Venezuela from 1973 to the Caracazo Massacre - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (3/9)
    Univ. of Maine Faculty Reinstated After Students Protest Against Cuts
    The Modern History of Venezuela from 1908 to 1973 - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (2/9)
    IMF Will Address Global Inequality, Says Managing Director Christine Lagarde
    Raising Big Banks' Leverage Ratio Good, But Not Nearly Enough
    TRNN Replay: Austerity Road to 19th Century
    Has Palestinian Maneuvering Revived Peace Talks?
    Late Jackson Mayor Lumumba's Son Wins Primary to Replace His Father, Runoff Election Ahead
    Quebecers Reject PQ and Elect a Liberal Government Representing Big Business
    TRNN Debate: Decriminalization vs. Legalization
    The Beginning of the Chavez Era - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (4/9)
    "Off With His Head": Court Upholds Obama's Power to Kill
    Workers at Nation's Top Hospital Strike For Fair Wages
    From Exile to Radicalization in Venezuela - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (1/9)
    Rwanda 20 Years Later: Genocide, Western Plunder of Congo, and President Kagame
    Ukrainian Protesters in the East Demand More Autonomy From Kiev Government
    Hunger Strikers Demand President Obama Halt His Record 2 Million Deportations
    Indian Parliamentary Elections - A Primer With Vijay Prashad
    West Looks to Carve Up Ukraine & Privatize Industries Held by Kleptocrats
    Where Are Israeli-Palestinian Peace Negotiations Headed?
    The Multiple Kingdoms of Saudi Arabia (5/5)
    Do the Afghan Presidential Elections Signify Progress?
    Republican Presidential Hopefuls Pay Homage to Billionaire Casino Tycoon Sheldon Adelson
    Will Extremist Lieberman Become Israel's Next Prime Minister?
    Why do the Saudis Want the US to Attack Iran? (4/5)
    Immigrant Advocates and Families Tell President Obama 'Not One More'
    Elections, Pipelines, and Protests - The Canada Panel
    Chris Hedges on "Israel's War on American Universities"
    Baltimore Residents Decry Lack of Affordable Housing
    Yellen Talks the Talk But Will She Walk the Walk?
    Hopkins Hospital Workers Speak Out against "Poverty Wages"
    Will Venezuela's New Floating Exchange Rate Curb Inflation?
    The European Central Bank's War on Wages is Pushing Europe's Economy to the Brink
    Supreme Court Decision Opens Floodgates for More Campaign Cash
    Charles Keating, the Financier Behind the Savings and Loan Scandal, Dies at 90
    Saudi Arabia and the al-Qaeda Monster (3/5)
    Maryland Residents Voice Opposition to Natural Gas Fracking Export Facility
    Supreme Court Ruling Gives Wealthy Individuals More Influence Over Elections
    What are the Saudis Afraid Of? - Madawi Al-Rasheed (2/5)
    Baltimore's MICA Adjunct Professors Set to Vote on Unionization
    Boycott of Israel Moving to Next Level?
    Hypocrisy Dressed Up as "Realism" Justifies American Alliance with Saudi Dictatorship
    Immigration Reform in the Shadows of Cesar Chavez's Legacy
    Leaked Senate Report Shows Use of Torture As "Ineffective"
    UN Report Says Climate Change Will Threaten Food Production Worldwide
    The Hypocrisy of US Calling for Enforcement of International Law
    How the Ecuadorian Economy Grew in a Global Recession
    'Shadows of Liberty' Trailer
    Kristina Borjesson on Why CBS Shut Down Her investigation into Flight 800 (2/8)
    Glen Ford on Racism in the American Media (3/8)
    Paul Jay on What Drives Corporate Media and What Drive The Real News (4/8)
    Creating a New Media Paradigm After Citizens United (5/8)
    Should The Left Engage with the Mainstream Media? (6/8)
    What Is the Financial Backing For The Real News? (7/8)
    Standing up to Character Assassination (8/8)
    Oligarchs, Fascists and the People's Protest in Ukraine
    TRNN Debate: Is Obamacare In the Interest of Workers?
    Too-Big-To-Fail Advantage Remains Intact For Big Banks
    Obama and the Saudi Agenda
    TRNN Replay: Investigating the Saudi Government's 9/11 Connection and the Path to Disilliusionment - Sen. Graham on Reality Asserts Itself pt 1
    The Iraq War's Real Legacy
    Petitions with 100,000+ Signatures Call for Snowden's Passport to be Reinstated
    We Need to Harness People Power - Andy Shallal on Reality Asserts Itself (4/4)
    BC Pipeline Fight and Quebec Elections - The Canada Panel
    Jonathan Schell - 1943-2014: Board Member of TRNN on Why We Need The Real News
    Teachers on Strike from the UK to Argentina
    Connecticut Poised to Become First State with $10.10 Minimum Wage
    Oil Spill Threatens Wildlife and Local Economy
    DC School Test Scores Up, But Poor Black Kids Are Doing Worse - Andy Shallal on RAI (3/4)
    Obama's Proposal To End NSA Bulk Data Collection Won't Protect Privacy
    How Google, Apple & The Biggest Tech Companies Colluded to Fix Workers' Wages
    An American Should be One that Questions Their Government - Andy Shallal on RAI (2/4)
    What's Driving Putin & Obama's Posturing on Ukraine?
    Hundreds of Students & Faculty Occupy College Campus to Fight Cuts to Public Higher Ed
    Due Process 'Impossible' In Harsh Death Sentencing Of Over 500 Muslim Brotherhood Members
    Has Anglo-American Capitalism Run Out of Steam?
    Being the "Other" in America - Andy Shallal on Reality Asserts Itself (1/4)
    TRNN Debate: Should Baltimore 'Ban The Box'?
    How Fallujah Became the Iraqi Government's New Battleground
    Why I Decided to Blow the Whistle on the NSA
    NASA Climate Predictions Show Serious Threat To Humanity
    Professor Who Teaches Israel-Palestine Conflict Accuses College of Violating His Academic Freedom
    CIA and NSA Wrongdoing Requires Independent Investigation, Says Former Church Committee Staff
    Are Tuition Breaks Enough To Combat High Student Debt And Low Graduation Rates?
    Industries Across the U.S. Are Stealing Wages From Their Lowest Paid Workers
    Who In Ukraine Will Benefit From An IMF Bailout?
    NSA Recording All International Calls From U.S.
    Israel "Making Lives Miserable" for Africans, Hoping They 'Self-Deport' (2/2)
    BP Gets Green Light to Drill in Gulf, But Has Safety Improved?
    Residents Still Not Drinking Tap Water Two Months After West Virginia Spill (1/2)
    Libya's Descent Into Turmoil Three Years After NATO Intervention
    From Pipelines to Peladeau - Canadian Report
    Israel "Making Lives Miserable" for Africans, Hoping They 'Self-Deport' (1/2)
    Congressional Progressive Caucus Budget Strikes Back Against Austerity
    Libya Three Years Later - Chaos and Partition
    Why Was Gaddafi Overthrown?
    Should Ukraine and West Accept De Facto Crimea Joining Russia? (2/2)
    Tony Benn Saw Socialism as the Culmination of Democratization
    Why Didn't Bush/Cheney Attack Iran and Can Obama Make and Sell a Deal? - Gareth Porter on Reality Asserts Itself (3/3)
    After Late Mayor Lumumba is Laid to Rest, What's Next for Jackson, Mississippi? (2/2)
    Crimea Referendum: Self Determination or Big Power Manipulation? (1/2)
    Sen. Graham: President Must Side with Openness About CIA and 9/11
    Manufacturing a Narrative for War - Gareth Porter on Reality Asserts Itself (2/3)
    Protesters Hit the Streets of Brooklyn to Demand $15 Minimum Wage
    Hammer: 'Moral Bankruptcy' Behind Massive GM Recall
    White House Withholds Thousands of Documents from Senate CIA Probe
    I Grew Up Believing in Time Magazine's Version of America - Gareth Porter on RAI (1/3)
    Western European Banks Vulnerable to Ukrainian Sovereign Debt Crisis
    TRNN Debate: What's Driving Inflation in Venezuela? (2/2)
    CIA vs. Senate: Who Is Obama Protecting?
    Will Tipped Workers Get Excluded Again From Minimum Wage Hike?
    TRNN Debate: What's Driving Inflation in Venezuela? (1/2)
    After Late Mayor Lumumba is Laid to Rest, What's Next for Jackson, Mississippi?(1/2)
    TRNN Replay: A Look at Who's Poised to Become No.2 at the Fed
    How Right-Wing Nationalism Rose to Influence in Ukraine (2/2)
    Netanyahu Attacks Boycott As Campaign Enters New Phase
    Moving Towards a Police State - Michael Ratner on Reality Asserts Itself (7/7)
    Fighting Reagan's Secret, Illegal Wars - Michael Ratner on Reality Asserts Itself (6/7)
    Puerto Rican Independence Movement and Cuba Further Radicalized Me - Michael Ratner on RAI (5/7)
    The Butcher of Attica - Michael Ratner on Reality Asserts Itself (4/7)
    MLK and a Radicalizing Moment in American History - Michael Ratner on Reality Asserts Itself (3/7)

    RealNewsNetwork.com, Real News Network, Real News, Real News For Real People, IWT are trademarks and service marks of IWT.TV inc. "The Real News" is the flagship show of IWT and Real News Network.

    All original content on this site is copyright of The Real News Network.  Click here for more

    Problems with this site? Please let us know

    Linux VPS Hosting by Star Dot Hosting