Peace and Prosperity Ron Paul Institute's flagship blog Copyright Ron Paul Institute Sun, 21 Jul 2019 20:33:37 GMT Sun, 21 Jul 2019 20:33:37 GMT Ron Paul Discusses President Trump’s Mixed Messages Regarding Iran Adam Dick suggesting that Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) — Ron Paul’s son and an advocate for improving United States relations with Iran — could help reduce tension with Iran by talking with the nation’s foreign minister.

Paul also discusses in the interview several other foreign policy matters, including the US government’s effort to overthrow the Venezuela government, the ending of the US dollar’s status as the world reserve currency, and Paul’s support for ending US involvement in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

Watch Ron Paul’s interview here:

Get your tickets to the Ron Paul Institute's Washington Annual Conference on August 24th. Tickets and info here.

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Lew Rockwell Q and A: Optimism, Murray Rothbard, and the Mises Institute Adam Dick

Before a packed house at the Ludwig von Mises Institute’s Mises University on Thursday, Mises Institute founder Lew Rockwell addressed an array of topics. On stage, Mark Thornton presented Rockwell with questions provided by attendees. Among the matters discussed during the Q and A, Rockwell explains why he believes there is reason for optimism in both the long term and the short term, discusses his time with the late influential libertarian writer Murray Rothbard who Rockwell says he still misses every day, and recounts some of the story of the early years of the Mises Institute.

Listen to Rockwell’s Q and A here.

Rockwell is an Advisory Board member for the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity. Come see Lew Rockwell speak at the Ron Paul Institute's August 24th conference in Washington DC! Info and tickets here.]]> Sun, 21 Jul 2019 19:22:08 GMT
President Trump Could Use Some Education Regarding Blowback for US Foreign Intervention Adam Dick

Back in a 2007 Republican presidential primary debate, then-presidential candidate Ron Paul sought to educate fellow presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani and the American people about the concept of blowback. Paul did so after Giuliani claimed during the debate to be shocked to hear Paul’s “absurd” argument that people would attack Americans, such as in the attacks of September 11, 2001, in reaction to the US government’s interventions abroad. As Paul noted in reply, blowback is understood and taught by the Central Intelligence Agency and has occurred through American history, including with the 1979 taking hostage of Americans in Iran.

In a speech Wednesday in Greenville, North Carolina, President Donald Trump showed that, like Giuliani, he could use some education in regard to blowback. Among a series of criticisms of Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) that Trump stated in the speech was that “Representative Omar blamed the United States for the terrorist attacks on our country, saying that terrorism is a reaction to our involvement in other people’s affairs.”

Maybe Trump could hit the books regarding the subject of blowback. After Paul’s debate dustup with Giuliani, Paul, in a press conference, discussed blowback further and offered a reading list that could help enlighten Giuliani regarding blowback and foreign policy. It could be helpful for Trump as well.]]> Fri, 19 Jul 2019 13:40:56 GMT
Libra: Advancing the Cryptocurrencies Crackdown and the War on Cash Adam Dick

United States Department of Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, in a Monday press conference, attacked cryptocurrencies, including Facebook’s planned Libra. Mnuchin charged that Libra and other cryptocurrencies “could be misused by money launderers and terrorist financiers” and are a “national security issue.” Further stated Mnuchin: “Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin have been exploited to support billions of dollars of illicit activity like cybercrime, tax evasion, extortion, ransomware, illicit drugs and human trafficking.”

Mnuchin, however, likely has no real reason for such concerns about Libra. It looks like backers of Libra are prepared to help the US government crack down on cryptocurrencies and financial privacy.

The argument Mnuchin presented Monday is the same argument routinely used in the US government’s war on cash. The ability of cash to be transferred privately is argued to be a great danger because the private transfers can advance nefarious purposes. To prevent this, cash transactions must be spied on, very much curtailed, or event banned; it’s a matter of public safety. So goes the argument for eliminating privacy from everyone’s financial transactions.

Mnuchin’s comments followed similar expressions of concern related to Libra and cryptocurrencies generally last week by Federal Reserve Board Chairman Jerome H. Powell in congressional testimony and President Donald Trump at Twitter.

But don’t be fooled into thinking Facebook is introducing Libra as a means to protect privacy from government’s prying eyes. Instead, the written testimony of David Marcus, the head of Facebook subsidiary Calibra, for a Tuesday hearing of the United States Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee indicates that Marcus wants the roll-out of Libra to be an intensely cooperative venture with the US government. Thus, it looks like the introduction of Libra is shaping up to be the means by which a major crackdown on all cryptocurrencies can commence. Marcus declares:
Chairman Powell has made clear that the process for reviewing Libra needs to be patient and thorough, rather than a sprint to implementation. We strongly agree. That was the spirit with which we published the white paper introducing the Libra project. The time between now and launch is designed to be an open process and subject to regulatory oversight and review. In fact, I expect that this will be the broadest, most extensive, and most careful pre-launch oversight by regulators and central banks in FinTech’s history. We know we need to take the time to get this right. And I want to be clear: Facebook will not offer the Libra digital currency until we have fully addressed regulatory concerns and received appropriate approvals.
Of course, the expansive regulations worked out for Libra should be expected to be applied to other cryptocurrencies as well. It’s only fair, right?

Singing from the same songbook as Mnuchin about preventing dangers that can arise from the use of cryptocurrencies and even explicitly marketing Libra as a participant in the war on cash, Marcus further states:
The Libra Association is similarly committed to supporting efforts by regulators, central banks, and lawmakers to ensure that Libra contributes to the fight against money laundering, terrorism financing, and more. A network that helps move more paper cash transactions—where many illicit activities happen—to a digital network that features regulated on- and off-ramps with proper know-your-customer (KYC) practices, combined with the ability for law enforcement and regulators to conduct their own analysis of on-chain activity, will present an opportunity to increase the efficacy of financial crimes monitoring and enforcement. The Libra Association will continue to engage proactively and openly with all relevant stakeholders on these key issues. Libra should improve detection and enforcement, not set them back.
So much for cryptocurrencies providing privacy from government’s prying eyes. The people behind Libra appear happy to work with the government to ensure there is no such benefit for people using Libra or, ultimately, any cryptocurrency.]]> Tue, 16 Jul 2019 19:39:49 GMT
McAdams: Turkey’s Erdogan Chooses Russia Over US RPI Staff
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Ron Paul Discusses the Huge Influence for Militarism in Washington, DC Adam Dick

Starting off a new interview with Ron Paul at the Wall Street for Main Street show, host Jason Burack asked Paul, who served in the United States House of Representatives as a Republican from Texas and ran three times for US president promoting a noninterventionist foreign policy, about the extent of influence in favor of militarism in Washington, DC.

Burack queries: “How much influence does the Pentagon and the military-industrial-and-information complex have over Congress, both political parties, whoever is US president, and the bureaucracy here in the DC metro area?” In response, Paul comments:
Well, it’s one of the biggest, if not the biggest. And there’s a good reason for that. It’s because they have the biggest budget for one individual group of people.
Paul continues that the support for the military-industrial complex is “very bipartisan” even though Democrats have some reputation for being less supportive of starting wars. As an example, Paul mentions Bernie Sanders, the independent US Senator from Vermont who is seeking the Democratic Party presidential nomination. Paul comments, “if some weaponry is being built in Vermont, he was able to support this.”

For some more information related to Paul’s comment concerning Sanders, check out Daniel Bukszpan’s July of 2016 CNBC article that examines Sanders’ support for the F-35 aircraft.

Listen to Paul’s complete interview here.

In Paul’s interview, Burack mentions that Paul’s Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity will soon be holding a conference in the heart of the military-industrial complex near Washington, DC. The conference titled “Breaking Washington’s Addiction to War” will take place Saturday, August 24 near the Dulles Airport in Northern Virginia.

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The Worst 'Fact Check' Ever Mike Maharrey

Voice of America has responded! And it may well be the worst “fact-check” and rebuttal in the history of fact-checks and rebuttals. As Ron Paul Institute executive director Daniel McAdams put it, “Unbelievable! They confirmed everything you said as true and then pronounced you wrong!”

This revolves around an interview I did on RT where I talked about how the U.S. weaponizes the dollar and uses the global SWIFT payment system as a foreign policy billy club. The Voice of America “fact-checking” website contacted me for comment. Since it was clear they intended to discredit my narrative, we decided not to respond to their email but instead write a full-blown rebuttal of the narrative that I knew they would advance.

This worked out even better than I anticipated. actually responded to my pre-rebuttal. And in their response, they basically conceded my main point – that the U.S. government can and does use SWIFT as a foreign policy tool. Of course, they tried to downplay the significance, but their concession is telling.
While the U.S. has the ability to pressure SWIFT thanks to its position in the global economy, it could be limited by potential costs that would be felt by U.S. businesses and those of U.S. allies. An Atlantic Council opinion piece warns the U.S. Congress to ‘be wary of taking unilateral steps to target SWIFT in future legislation,’ adding the practice risks hampering the flow of financial data, “slowing global trade and transactions.” Moreover, the U.S. does not directly control SWIFT. [Emphasis added]
McAdams is right. This essentially confirms what I said — No. The U.S. does not control SWIFT, but it can exert significant pressure on it.
So, despite what VoA and the Treasury Department claim, the U.S. government clearly pressures SWIFT to serve as a foreign policy tool. It may be technically accurate to say the U.S. government does not ‘control’ SWIFT. But the U.S. clearly applies political pressure on the institution and that pressure yields results. [Emphasis added]
The Atlantic Council piece links to confirms what I wrote. The very fact that somebody felt the need to warn Congress about the consequences of abusing its influence over SWIFT indicates that my position is absolutely correct. chose to ignore most of the points that I made in my pre-rebuttal article, writing that they were “beyond the scope of this fact check.”

This is an odd statement considering my article addressed the substance of what they were supposedly fact-checking. So basically, the very thing they were fact-checking was beyond the scope of the fact check.


As Ron Paul once said, “Truth is treason in an empire of lies.” The fact that a propaganda arm of the U.S. government wants to whitewash the truth about America’s economic warfare is telling. Its inability to effectively do it is even more so.

Reprinted with permission from Tenth Amendment Center.]]> Thu, 11 Jul 2019 20:11:43 GMT
Marianne Williamson Tries to Help Mike Gravel Give Peace a Chance in the Presidential Debates Adam Dick sent out an email to raise funds for one of her Democratic presidential primary opponents — former United States Senator Mike Gravel. The stated purpose of her email was to help increase the number of contributors to Gravel’s campaign by 10,000 so he can meet the contributors threshold for participation in future Democratic primary presidential debates.

After meeting a contributors threshold, along with attaining sufficient support measured in polling, Williamson was included in the first Democratic presidential primary debate in June. Gravel, though, did not qualify to participate.

Williamson’s participation in the debate helped spur interest in her and her campaign. Indeed, Google Trends announced that Williamson was the most searched candidate on the internet during her June presidential debate, even while she was among the candidates with the least amount of speaking time.

From his time in the US Senate when Gravel opposed the Vietnam War through his decades later singing “Give Peace a Chance,” Gravel has provided a voice against empire and militarism.

Back in the 2008 presidential campaign, Gravel largely dedicated his time on the debate stage to relentlessly condemning US military intervention overseas and the military-industrial complex. You can watch here his comments in the first Democratic primary presidential debate of that campaign:

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To Reduce Fear of Police, Eliminate Laws Empowering Police to Abuse People Adam Dick
Bovard writes his editorial as a response to South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg’s comment in a June Democratic presidential primary debate that Buttigieg is “determined to bring about a day when a white person driving a vehicle and a black person driving a vehicle, when they see a police officer approaching, feels the exact same thing — a feeling not of fear but of safety.”

After examining the wide scope of police authority under the law, Bovard concludes that what is needed to pursue the goal Buttigieg espouses is a policy change much more radical than any of the Democratic presidential candidates on the debate stage are likely to endorse. Bovard writes: “The best way to encourage citizens to have ‘a feeling not of fear but of safety’ is to repeal legions of laws empowering police to unjustifiably accost and wrongfully subjugate peaceful citizens.”

Read Bovard’s editorial here.

Speaking of fear of US government agents, then-House of Representatives Member Ron Paul (R-TX) similarly started of a 1997 House floor speech with this observation:
Mr. Speaker, earlier this year another member severely criticized me on the House floor for declaring on C-SPAN that, indeed, many Americans justifiably fear their own government. This fear has come from the police-state mentality that prompted Ruby Ridge, Waco, and many other episodes of an errant federal government.
Returning to this observation later in his speech, Paul comments:
Force and intimidation are the tools of tyrants. Intimidation with government guns and the threat of imprisonment and the fear of harassment by government agents put fear into the hearts of millions of Americans.
With constitutional limits on the US government’s power disregarded, Paul laments, “we have witnessed the massive build-up of a virtual army of armed regulators prowling the states where they have no legal authority.”

Like Bovard, Paul suggests a policy change in response that few American politicians would support. Paul declares: “Yes, we need gun control; we need to disarm our bureaucrats, then abolish the agencies.”

Watch Paul’s complete speech here:

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'The Collapse of Marijuana Prohibition and the Future Drug Policy Reform' RPI Staff here.

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On Independence Day, Consider the Failure to Keep the States ‘Free and Independent’ Adam Dick

The Declaration of Independence, celebrated each July Fourth, does not speak of creating a powerful new government. Instead, it challenges the excessive power exercised in various ways by the British government in the American colonies. Over the many decades since the document’s publication, the increased rejection of the recognition that the colonies and then the American states are free and independent is tied to the growing of the United States government’s power and the decreasing respect for liberty in America.

Libertarian communicator Ron Paul wrote about this development in his book Swords into Plowshares. The independence expressed in the Declaration of Independence, notes Paul, was not for a nation called the United States. Instead it was for each of the several colonies — the independent states. America has come very far from this founding principle. On Independence Day, it would be good for many Americans to contemplate Paul’s comments in the following paragraph from Swords into Plowshares:
The Founders made an attempt to prevent the catastrophe we’re facing. Their sincere effort to protect liberty with a republican form of government has failed. The very clear conclusion expressed in the last paragraph of the Declaration of Independence states that the “United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States” that come together only in a very limited fashion.

This principle of independent states was mentioned three times in the concluding paragraph, emphasizing the purpose of the Declaration of Independence and the American Revolution. Unfortunately, the Constitution weakened this important point made in the Declaration of Independence, and, over the years, constitutional constraints have not done much to protect the states as “free and independent.”

Further erosion occurred as a consequence of the Civil War. And in many ways it’s been downhill ever since for the protection of liberty for which the colonists fought and died. As this trend has continued, the executive branch has grown in power and scope.
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Bolton’s absence helped Trump in Korea – Daniel McAdams RPI Staff
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New Mexico Governor Wants Marijuana Legalized Next Year Adam Dick

Last week, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed into law marijuana legalization in his state, making Illinois the 11th state to legalize and the second to do so via legislation approved by a state legislature and signed by a governor instead of through a voters-approved ballot measure. New Mexico may soon follow in adopting legislature and governor-approved marijuana legalization.

On Friday, New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham announced she is creating a task force, including state legislators and cabinet officials among its members, that will make recommendations for recreational marijuana legalization legislation. Dan Boyd reports in the Albuquerque Journal that the governor desires that the task force will have developed the framework for a legalization bill by late November, which will mean a bill can be ready for consideration when the state legislature meets in January.

New Mexico already has a medical marijuana program and marijuana decriminalization.

Earlier this year, the New Mexico House of Representatives approved marijuana legalization legislation, but that legislation did not become law due to the failure of the Senate to act on it.

Like Pritzker in Illinois, Lujan Grisham was elected governor in New Mexico in 2018 after promoting marijuana legalization during the campaign.]]> Mon, 01 Jul 2019 21:13:49 GMT
Ron Paul on the War Promoters Adam Dick
Special interests promoting military intervention overseas are joined by President Donald Trump who, Paul notes, says selling weapons “is good for business.” Yet, asserts Paul, Secretary of States Mike Pompeo and National Security Advisor John Bolton are more aggressive in their pursuit of such intervention than is Trump.

Watch Paul’s interview here:

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With Illinois Legalization, Over 90 Million Americans Live in States That Have Adopted Marijuana Legalization Adam Dick

On Tuesday, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed into law a marijuana legalization bill. Due to the enactment of this legislation, over 12 million more Americans now live in a state where marijuana legalization has been adopted. In total, well over 90 million Americans live in the 11 states that have legalized marijuana.

That legalization all took place in just the seven years since legalization was approved by voters through ballot measures in Colorado and Washington in November of 2012.

Together with legalization in Washington, DC, as well as in Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands, the presence of marijuana legalization in 11 states means that about 3 in 10 Americans live in a jurisdiction where marijuana legalization has been adopted.

The continuing adoption of legalization through the states, as well as the recent movement of state legislatures and governors, first in Vermont and then in Illinois, to provide a means in addition to ballot measures for adopting legalization, suggest that we may soon see well beyond half of Americans living in jurisdictions with legal marijuana.

Illinois is one of six states I mentioned in January that seemed likely to legalize soon.]]> Wed, 26 Jun 2019 22:42:35 GMT
Ron Paul and Jimmy Dore Explore Their Common Ground on Big Issues Adam Dick
Indeed, throughout the wide-ranging interview, Dore and Paul explore these and other matters where they find some agreement, including related to the Federal Reserve and the war on drugs. And Paul makes clear that to advance shared goals it is important to build coalitions in which people of differing ideological perspectives can work together in areas of agreement.

Listen to Paul’s complete interview, starting thirty-one-and-half minutes into the Jimmy Dore Show episode, here:

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Lew Rockwell: President Trump Should Fire Pompeo, Haspel, and Bolton — the ‘Trio of Blood’ Adam Dick
Watch Rockwell’s complete interview here:

Rockwell is an Advisory Board member for the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and prosperity.]]> Mon, 24 Jun 2019 00:22:39 GMT
Was the Ron Paul Campaign Secretly Backed by the Russians? RPI Staff
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Neocons Stovepiping Intelligence Again: McAdams on RT America RPI Staff
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Many Americans Say Freedom is an Important Reason They Support Marijuana Legalization Adam Dick

Results released this month of a new Gallup poll of marijuana legalization supporters in America indicate that 60 percent of them view legalizing marijuana being “a matter of freedom and personal choice” as a very important reason for supporting legalization, while an additional 29 percent see this as a somewhat important reason.

Freedom and personal choice come in ahead of generating tax revenue, making marijuana safer through regulation, and believing marijuana is not harmful to its users as important reasons for legalizing. At the same time, it trails behind beliefs that people use marijuana for medical reasons and that legalization would free up law enforcement to focus on other crimes.

These results are good news for people who have hoped the growing support for marijuana legalization indicates that people have increasingly come to respect the right to grow, sell, possess, and use marijuana — instead of just supporting marijuana legalization for reasons based in pragmatism. A strong respect for freedom related to marijuana suggests a similar respect can develop in relation to other drugs and in regard generally to nonviolent, yet currently outlawed, choices people may make.]]> Thu, 20 Jun 2019 14:04:34 GMT