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Will Trump Continue the Bush-Obama Legacy?

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This week, Congress passed a budget calling for increasing federal spending and adding $1.7 trillion to the national debt over the next ten years. Most so-called “fiscal conservatives" voted for this big-spending budget because it allows Congress to repeal some parts of Obamacare via “reconciliation." As important as it is to repeal Obamacare, it does not justify increasing spending and debt.

It is disappointing, but not surprising, that the Obamacare repeal would be used to justify increasing spending. Despite sequestration’s minor (and largely phony) spending cuts, federal spending has increased every year since Republicans took control of the House of Representatives. Some will attribute this to the fact that the Republican House had to negotiate with a big-spending Democratic president — even though federal spending actually increased by a greater percentage the last time Republicans controlled the White House and Congress than it did under President Obama.
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Will Obama’s ‘Good War’ in Afghanistan Continue?

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Last week, as the mainstream media continued to obsess over the CIA’s evidence-free claim that the Russians hacked the presidential election, President Obama quietly sent 300 US Marines back into Afghanistan’s Helmand Province. This is the first time in three years that the US military has been sent into that conflict zone, and it represents a final failure of Obama’s Afghanistan policy. The outgoing president promised that by the end of his second term, the US military would only be present in small numbers and only on embassy duty. But more than 8,000 US troops will remain in Afghanistan as he leaves office.

When President Obama was first elected he swore that he would end the US presence in Iraq (the “bad” war) and increase US presence in Afghanistan (the “good” war). He ended up increasing troops to both wars, while the situation in each country continued to deteriorate.
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Good News: Washington Frozen Out of Syria Peace Plan

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As the US mainstream media obsessed last week about Russia's supposed “hacking” of the US elections and President Obama’s final round of Russia sanctions in response, something very important was taking place under the media radar. As a result of a meeting between foreign ministers of Russia, Iran, and Turkey last month, a ceasefire in Syria has been worked out and is being implemented. So far it appears to be holding, and after nearly six years of horrible warfare the people of Syria are finally facing the possibility of rebuilding their lives.

What is so important about this particular ceasefire? It was planned, agreed to, and implemented without the participation of the United States Government.
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Does the Cause of Peace Have a Future?

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The full wrath of the Beltway neocons is about to hit my Institute for Peace and Prosperity. 

Congress snuck language into this year's Defense Authorization Bill that enables President Obama (or a future president) to crack down on critics of Washington's disastrous foreign policy. 

All they have to do is claim an organization pushes "foreign propaganda" and a new task force including the State Department, Pentagon, the CIA, and other federal agencies will move to shut it down. Do they need proof? Evidence? No! 

Just last month the Washington Post put out a blacklist of 200 websites, including major outlets like the Drudge Report, LewRockwell.com, ZeroHedge...and my Institute for Peace and Prosperity!
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New Year’s Resolutions for Donald Trump and Congress

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In the spirit of New Year’s, here are four resolutions for President-elect Trump and Congress that will enable them to really make America great again:

1) Audit the Fed….and then end it: The Federal Reserve Bank's easy money policies have eroded the American people’s standard of living and facilitated the growth of the welfare-warfare state. The Fed is also responsible for the growth in income inequality. Yet Congress still refuses to pass Audit the Fed, much less end it.

During the campaign, then-candidate Donald Trump promised that Audit the Fed would be part of his first 100 days agenda. Unfortunately, he has not spoken of auditing the Fed or another aspect of monetary policy since the election. President-elect Trump should keep his promise and work with Congress to pass Audit the Fed and finally let the American people know the truth about the Fed’s conduct of monetary policy. Then, of course, end the Fed.
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After Aleppo: We Need a New Syria Policy

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Over the past week, eastern Aleppo was completely brought back under control of the Syrian government. The population began to return to its homes, many of which were abandoned when al-Qaeda-linked rebels took over in 2012. As far as I know, the western mainstream media did not have a single reporter on the ground in Aleppo, but relied on “activists” to inform us that the Syrian army was massacring the civilian population. It hardly makes sense for an army to fight and defeat armed rebels just so it can go in and murder unarmed civilians, but then again not much mainstream reporting on the tragedy in Syria has made sense.

I spoke to one western journalist last week who actually did report from Aleppo and she painted a very different picture of what was going on there. She conducted video interviews with dozens of local residents and they told of being held hostage and starved by the “rebels,” many of whom were using US-supplied weapons supposed to go to “moderates.”
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Ron Paul: What's Missing From The Russian Hack Argument?

Without any proof or evidence being presented that Russia interfered with our election, we're just seeing political grandstanding at this point by both President Obama and Secretary Clinton. Have you noticed that there's never any mention or concern about Secretary Clinton having a private server in her home? If anything, that server would have made it much easier for Russia (or anyone else) to know what was going on with our government. I  discuss this, our CIA's shenanigans, and much more below...
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War on ‘Fake News’ Part of a War on Free Speech

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A major threat to liberty is the assault on the right to discuss political issues, seek out alternative information sources, and promote dissenting ideas and causes such as non-interventionism in foreign and domestic affairs. If this ongoing assault on free speech succeeds, then all of our liberties are endangered.

One of the most common assaults on the First Amendment is the attempt to force public policy organizations to disclose their donors. Regardless of the intent of these laws, the effect is to subject supporters of controversial causes to harassment, or worse. This harassment makes other potential donors afraid to support organizations opposing a popular war or defending the rights of an unpopular group.
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Trump’s Promised ‘New Foreign Policy’ Must Abandon Regime Change for Iran

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President-elect Donald Trump told a Cincinnati audience this week that he intends to make some big changes in US foreign policy. During his “thank you” tour in the midwest, Trump had this to say:
We will pursue a new foreign policy that finally learns from the mistakes of the past. We will stop looking to topple regimes and overthrow governments. …In our dealings with other countries we will seek shared interests wherever possible...”
If this is really to be President Trump’s foreign policy, it would be a welcome change from the destructive path pursued by the two previous administrations. Such a foreign policy would go a long way toward making us safer and more prosperous, as we would greatly reduce the possibility of a “blowback” attack from abroad, and we would save untold billions with a foreign policy of restraint.
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To Really ‘Make America Great Again,’ End the Fed!

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Former Dallas Federal Reserve Bank President Richard Fisher recently gave a speech identifying the Federal Reserve’s easy money/low interest rate policies as a source of the public anger that propelled Donald Trump into the White House. Mr. Fisher is certainly correct that the Fed’s policies have “skewered” the middle class. However, the problem is not specific Fed policies, but the very system of fiat currency managed by a secretive central bank.

Federal Reserve-generated increases in money supply cause economic inequality. This is because, when the Fed acts to increase the money supply, well-to-do investors and other crony capitalists are the first recipients of the new money. These economic elites enjoy an increase in purchasing power before the Fed’s inflationary policies lead to mass price increases. This gives them a boost in their standard of living.
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