Five Minutes Five Issues: Julian Assange, NJ Marijuana. Saudi Support, War and Debt, RI Marijuana

by | Dec 3, 2018

A new episode of Five Minutes Five Issues is out. You can listen to it, and read a transcript, below. You can also find previous episodes of the show at Stitcher, iTunes, YouTube, and SoundCloud.

Listen to the new episode here:

Read a transcript of the new episode, including links to further information regarding the topics discussed, here:

The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity welcomes you to Five Minutes Five Issues.

Starting in five four three two one.

Hello, I am Adam Dick, a Ron Paul Institute senior fellow.

Let’s start.

Issue one.

Julian Assange of WikiLeaks, for years after he obtained asylum from the Ecuador embassy in London, hosted guests and communicated with the outside world. Via video, Assange took part in interviews and presented speeches, including, last year, a Ron Paul Liberty Report interview and a Ron Paul Institute conference speech.

Then, for the last eight months, Assange has been held in isolation at the embassy, much like a prisoner in solitary confinement. After eight months of effort, la Republica was able to arrange a visit with Assange. Here is a description of Assange’s condition from la Republica’s report:

As soon as we saw him, we realised he has lost a lot of weight. Too much. He is so skinny. Not even his winter sweater can hide his skinny shoulders. His nice-looking face, captured by photographers all around the world, is very tense. His long hair and beard make him look like a hermit, though not a nutter: as we exchange greetings, he seems very lucid and rational.

Issue two.

In the September 1 episode of Five Minutes Five Issues, I talked about the New Jersey legislature potentially approving legislation legalizing recreational marijuana — a priority for the state’s governor — in September. But, things did not move forward that quickly.

This week, committees in the New Jersey state Assembly and Senate approved a marijuana legalization bill. This is a promising sign that legalization will occur soon. But, Payton Guion cautions at that the legislative process will likely not be completed this year. Guion writes that the legislature is scheduled to be in session only one more day — December 17 — this year and that the bill may be revised before consideration by all House and Senate members.

Issue three.

The Wednesday 63 to 37 vote in the United States Senate in favor advancing to the Senate floor Senate Joint Resolution 54, legislation seeking to end the US military’s supporting of the Saudi Arabia-led war on Yemen, is a challenge to a major, decades-old US policy of supporting the Saudi Arabia government.

In February of 2006, then-US House of Representatives Member Ron Paul (R-TX) discussed some background of US-Saudi Arabia relations in a House floor speech titled “The End of Dollar Hegemony.” After the 1971 demise of the remnant of the US gold standard, Paul explains:

Realizing the world was embarking on something new and mind-boggling, elite money managers, with especially strong support from U.S. authorities, struck an agreement with OPEC to price oil in U.S. dollars exclusively for all worldwide transactions. This gave the dollar a special place among world currencies and in essence “backed” the dollar with oil. In return, the U.S. promised to protect the various oil-rich kingdoms in the Persian Gulf against threat of invasion or domestic coup.

Issue four.

In a new interview at Salon, Ron Paul Institute Advisory Board Member and Fox News Senior Judicial Analyst Andrew Napolitano gives some advice for libertarians. Napolitano says:

They need to articulate to the public the dangers of war and debt. Those are the two principal areas of government on which there is no disagreement between Republicans and Democrats and which, if left unchecked, will destroy our society as we know it.

Issue five.

Kyle Jaeger reported Friday at Marijuana Moment that, while Rhode Island’s governor and House of Representatives speaker, both Democrats, are not supporting legalizing recreational marijuana, the Republican leader in the state House of Representatives — Blake Filippi — is a supporter. Indeed, in a new interview, Fillippi even criticized recent legalization in Massachusetts for being too restrictive regarding the number of stores allowed to sell marijuana.


That’s a wrap.

Transcripts of Five Minutes Five Issues episodes, including links to related information, are at the Ron Paul Institute blog.

Five four three two one.


  • Adam Dick

    Adam worked from 2003 through 2013 as a legislative aide for Rep. Ron Paul. Previously, he was a member of the Wisconsin State Board of Elections, a co-manager of Ed Thompson's 2002 Wisconsin governor campaign, and a lawyer in New York and Connecticut.

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