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Ron Paul and Mark Spitznagel Talk Freedom, Farming, and the Fed Ron Paul and Mark Spitznagel share a passion for non-interventionism, free markets, and Austrian economics. Congressman Paul served many years as a U.S. Representative from Texas, spanning 1976 to 2013, and was a Republican presidential candidate in 2008 and 2012. He has written extensively on liberty and politics, including The Revolution: A Manifesto and End the Fed. Spitznagel is the founder of Universa Investments, an investment advisor that specializes in tail-hedging, and is the author of The Dao of Capital, for which Paul wrote the Foreword. The two friends sat down recently to discuss topics ranging from the liberty movement and agricultural policy, to the consequences of Federal Reserve monetary policy. Here is a transcript of their conversation:



26 August 2014read on...

Peace President Plots War on Syria The Obama administration is reportedly preparing to begin air strikes on Syrian territory without the consent of the Syrian government. The pretext is the rapidly expanding US war on ISIS, but in fact this is the long-desired US attack on Syria that was temporarily thwarted, reportedly by popular opposition last year (but more likely by US knowledge that its claims the Assad government was behind the chemical attacks at Ghouta had no basis in reality and would not stand up to even superficial scrutiny).

26 August 2014read on...

The Syrian Arab Government and ISIS Have Always Been Enemies There is all kinds of nonsense circulating in the mainstream media and in the wilder reaches of the internet galaxy concerning ISIS (IS) and the Syrian government (SAG). There are also an amazing number of stories on the web that claim that "The Caliph Ibrahim" (Baghdadi) is actually an Israeli Jew, born in Israel to Jewish parents. Whoa! That's a great one! It has its origins in Iranian media that is selling the idea that Snowden says so. OK. Let's see the intercepts that Snowden is said to have on that subject.

25 August 2014read on...

Missed Ron Paul's Birthday? It's Not Too Late To Claim Your Gift! Thanks to so many of you who responded to Ron Paul's birthday fundraising appeal. Your contribution helps us continue to promote Dr. Paul's views worldwide. Guess what: we have only just begun! With your help we will take the message of liberty and non-interventionism straight to the neocon camp! We have them on the ropes! Please help us finish the job!

If you missed the appeal, it is not too late to take advantage of Dr. Paul's offer to personally sign his "Foreign Policy of Freedom" book to you as a gift for your minimum $100 donation. Please click here for more details.

25 August 2014read on...

Ferguson: The War Comes Home
America’s attention recently turned away from the violence in Iraq and Gaza toward the violence in Ferguson, Missouri, following the shooting of Michael Brown. While all the facts surrounding the shooing have yet to come to light, the shock of seeing police using tear gas (a substance banned in warfare), and other military-style weapons against American citizens including journalists exercising their First Amendment rights, has started a much-needed debate on police militarization.

24 August 2014read on...

Obama's Skewed Policy Priorities in Middle East
The US State Department has maintained that continuity rather than change in the American policy is what should be expected in the aftermath of the killing of photojournalist James Foley by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria early this week.

24 August 2014read on...

Cautious Outrage Over Alleged Foley Execution


The alleged beheading of freelance journalist James Foley by the shadowy ISIS (or Islamic State) has sparked outrage and horror around the globe.



23 August 2014read on...

US/NATO Slam Russian Aid to Eastern Ukraine After waiting more than a week on the border with Ukraine while the Kiev government's cooperation then condemnation switched several times, Moscow gave the green light for its humanitarian convoy of 280 trucks to enter war-torn Lugansk today. Civilians in breakaway areas of Ukraine have suffered without food and water for weeks and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) agreed that the situation was desperate.

22 August 2014read on...

Hagel and Dempsey: We Must Attack Syria! Get Ready! The Islamist ISIS/ISIL gang is providing the pretext for another major US war in the Middle East. Top US administration officials are turning up the war and atrocity rhetoric to full volume. Something is happening.

21 August 2014read on...

Obama, Democrats, Republicans, and NATO: Still Playing the Islamists’ Foil
Listening to President Obama speak of Iraq on 18 August 2014 underscores the point made above by Polybius, and it also validates the brilliant diplomat George F. Kennan’s argument that America is virtually incapable of conducting an effective foreign policy because of our leaders’ minimal knowledge of how the world works and the dominance of domestic considerations on the policies they pursue overseas. In Obama’s short statement on Iraq both of these negative factors were clearly evident.

21 August 2014read on...

Featured Articles

Iran Gets Short End Of The Nuclear Deal


Iran Surrounded

After all the gnashing of teeth, beating of breasts and tearing of hair coming from Israel and its American supporters, you’d think last week’s nuclear deal in Geneva has opened the way for Iran to become a mighty nuclear weapons power.

Nonsense. Coolly examined, Tehran came off with the short end of the stick at the so-called P5 + 1 big power talks in Geneva. Here’s why:

Bowing to intolerable sanctions and economic warfare from the US, Tehran agreed to limit uranium enrichment to only 5% (over 80% is needed to make a nuclear weapon). This low level is sufficiently only for power generation. Iran is to stop enriching to 20%, the level needed for medical isotopes.

Iran further agreed to halt construction of its Arak heavy water reactor that could eventually produce plutonium, a key nuclear weapons fuel. Tehran agreed not to build any new nuclear facilities, including next generation centrifuges, and grant daily access to UN nuclear inspectors at its top-secret Nantaz and Fordow plants. It will provide design plans for its Arak reactor.

In short, Iran freezes its modest nuclear program to the point where it can only be used for civilian energy purposes.

For these major concessions, Iran will be paid $7 billion – of its own money, which has been frozen abroad by US-led sanctions. Some sanctions will be slightly eased. Iran will regain access to some of its gold and cash held abroad. But most of its $ 100 billion in assets frozen abroad will remain blocked. Tehran will be able to sell modest amounts of oil at current restricted levels, and fund some Iranian students abroad. Big deal.

Iran will be finally allowed to buy some parts for its dilapidated civilian airliners that have become flying coffins because of sanctions. But, apparently, not new western aircraft.

The Geneva accord will last for 6 months, then be reviewed.
Given all the American and Israeli talk of war against Iran, it represents something of a triumph for US, Russian, EU and Chinese diplomacy. President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry deserve kudos for engineering the deal – both the open one in Geneva, and the backroom talks run out of Oman.

Russia’s deft Foreign Mininster Sergei Lavrov also deserves applause, having contributed much diplomatic skill and intelligent policy to the negotiations.

There appears no way Iran could even come close to making a few nuclear weapons – or, for that matter, delivered them at medium range. But that has not quieted the wailing and threats coming from Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu, who has some 200 nuclear weapons tucked away in his basement. Or from America’s pro-Israel lobby and its captive Republican Party.

As the great Israeli writer Uri Avnery observed, the US Congress would jump to repeal the Ten Commandments if so ordered by Israel.

We have been watching the ugly spectacle of Congressmen and Senators backing the harsh criticism of their president by Israel’s Netanyahu. The US media has also been very biased against the Geneva deal. Yet in spite of this, a recent Pew poll found 44% of Americans supported the Geneva accords while only a small number opposed them.

While Iran has not benefitted from this deal, it has at least lessened the threat of attack. The Geneva accord may pave the way to a warming of relations with the west and America’s final acceptance of the Islamic Republic as a legitimate Mideast presence. This prospect that has driven the Israelis and the Saudis into a towering rage.

The campaign to block the Geneva accords has thrust into the daylight the long-covert alliance between Saudi Arabia and the Gulf emirates on one hand, and Israel. Egypt and Jordan are also members of this anti-Iranian camp. The possible emergence of Iran from US-imposed isolation is already throwing the Mideast into convulsions.

We also witnessed at Geneva another example of the consummate, unblushing hypocrisy that makes France often less than loved. France, which has been selling arms to the Gulf Emirates and has a base in Abu Dhabi, held up the Iran deal claiming it would promote “nuclear proliferation.” This is the same France that originally sold nuclear technology, weapons and missiles to Israel in the mid-1950’s. Quel nerve!

Back in the US, having seen the full might of the pro-Israel lobby attacking their president and making Congress clap like circus seals, many Americans must be wondering if they have lost control of their nation’s Mideast policy.

Polls show Americans certainly don’t want to fight yet another war for Israel’s benefit. PM Netanyahu has gone too far in trying to throw his weight around in America and in humiliated President Barack Obama.

His heavy-handed actions will remind many that the US Congress has been totally corrupted by big money and big media – and needs to be reformed.

As Ben Franklin said, “there is no bad peace; and no good war.” So Geneva, however imperfect, is a step forward. Now, we will watch its foes move heaven and earth to sabotage these accords.

Read Mr. Margolis's blog.

Flickr/georat1960


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