Media & War: Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity 2018 Conference

by | Aug 29, 2018


The heart and soul of the American antiwar movement participated in the sold-out Ron Paul Institute of Peace and Prosperity’s 2018 “Media and War” Conference on August 18 held outside Washington, D.C. Some alternative media voices have abandoned or toned down their antiwar reporting to support President Trump. The “progressive left” has abandoned its opposition to war, for instance, activists commemorating the 1968 Vietnam War protests at the Democratic National Convention have diverted the issue of peace to racism, climate change, poverty, and police violence.

Dr. Paul continues to be a courageous leader advocating a non-interventionist foreign policy and peace as the path to prosperity, bringing together a coalition of voices from the left and right. Pro-peace libertarians and classical liberals travelled from all over the US to the event to listen to speakers explain how the controlled official media promotes war, how the deep state silences voices for peace, while encouraging citizens to attempt to overcome these obstacles of propaganda and censorship.

Global peace leader Dr. Paul, in his keynote address, denounced the “shrewd” and fascist tactic of the government controlling radio, TV and now social media through licensing. “If you have rigid beliefs you must be neutralized,” he said. “They want people who don’t believe in anything,” which is utilitarianism. The popularity of socialism is propaganda promoted by the mass media, he said.

We are witnessing, he said, “a war against the American people.” He explained his support for competing currencies, gold and cryptocurrencies utilizing the rule of no fraud while ending the Federal Reserve and eliminating legal tender laws. If a civil war broke out in America, it is not necessarily true the conservatives would have more guns, he said, as “The liberals lie about everything.” The very wealthy take care of themselves, he said, and the true isolationists are the warmongers.

When he ran for president in 2008, he received more funds from the military than all other Republican candidates combined. “We don’t need a draft to pursue a non-interventionist foreign policy.” The US is broke, and the printing presses are falsely keeping the economy going. Sanctions are dangerous. The market is tough, the consumer is king, he said, and the government shouldn’t bail anyone out, yet admitted “We need to learn the tricks of the PR trade,” he said.

More prisoners are in jail as a result of drug law violations than all other inmates combined, he said, calling for the legalization of marijuana. Civilization must get to the point where technology advances to where it is not used to kill each other in wars. “It is your life and your right to use your liberties as you see fit. Individual rights come from the Creator in a natural way. The purpose of the government should be the protection of liberty. “You can’t combat an idea whose idea has come,” he said, and the instincts of the people are for peace because it creates prosperity. “No way do I think I’m sacrificing anything,” he said. “I love encouraging others and talking to young people. Get involved. It is tough work but do it and have fun.”

Daniel McAdams, the executive director of the Institute, was acknowledged by Dr. Paul for his dedication and hard work organizing the conference. McAdams, who co-hosts the Liberty Report with Dr. Paul and who recently had his Twitter account suspended and then reinstated, opened the event, introduced the speakers, and spoke on a panel with current and former staffers of Dr. Paul.

Daniel McAdams

Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, former chief of staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell and professor at the College of William and Mary, said he was working on a House Continuing Resolution 81 and Senate Special Resolution 54 that states the war in Yemen is unconstitutional based on the US Constitution. “It is the most brutal war probably on face of the earth,” he said, “a first-class humanitarian disaster, unheard of in terms of mainstream media.” He said recently with US munitions and intelligence, the Saudis hit a school bus and killed 50 children. “This is routine for Saudi-UAE effort and the US is supporting them.” The US has special forces in Yemen assisting the ground effort, along with munitions, intelligence and air support, he said. He argued the US has no grand strategy for all its wars. He also said the US military effort in Afghanistan has nothing to do with fighting terrorists. “No external threat can allow us to change our values. We are doing it to ourselves.”

Col. Wilkerson

John Whitehead, founder and president of the Rutherford Institute, forcefully stated “The battlefield is here” in America with all the surveillance and perpetual war, and that the US is a police state with militarized police nationwide, 175,000 armed federal agents, and 80,000 SWAT team raids smashing down people’s doors, often in the wrong houses. The DHS conducts threat assessments of many American homes, he said, and “Everything you do is being watched.” He advised American citizens to take control at the local level and to know their rights. Public schools don’t teach the First Amendment, but you can teach your kids, he said. “The only way to preserve free speech is with more free speech.”

John Whitehead

Caitlin Johnstone, a self-described “rogue journalist focusing on war, peace, coalition-building, and ruffling establishment feathers,” spoke via live video. She stands out from the so-called progressives who are silent on war. “Those who control the narrative control the world,” she said. “Trust in the media is at an all-time low and the ruling power establishment is scared,” she said, so they are trying to shut up alternative views such as Alex Jones, Julian Assange, and Peter Van Buren. The mass media is trying to manufacture consent, she said, by quieting voices. Her Twitter account was suspended but then reinstated as a result of pressure from her 33k followers. These tech giants have deep ties to and act as contractors to the government she pointed out. “We know where this is going. People will seek out what is banned,” she said. “This is visible totalitarianism, but the end game is they can’t rule what they can’t control. They must maintain seriousness, so we must laugh at them. We all woke up from the matrix and there is a grassroots rebellion” with the fight now at the town square of social media. She advised attendees to be activists: speak the truth, and since content is key on social media, to start a blog, create a video or a mime.

Caitlin Johnstone

James Jatras, attorney, author, US State Department official and former US Senate senior staff, asked, “Have you committed your three felonies today?” He said under the corrupt politicized legal system in which we live, everyone is guilty of some crime. “If they want you, they can get you, it’s up to officials’ discretion,” he said. “Losers are able to terrorize winners, but in the case of Hillary (Clinton)’s mishandling classified information, there is no need to see the server.” Trump is powerless, surrounded by neocons, reduced to tweeting vs. issuing orders, he said. Putin is Hitler and Rand Paul is a traitor in the world of the official media as it tries to tie Putin to racism, hate speech, and white privilege. “The ace of spades is war,” he said. “It is hard to escape the notion that we are approaching the edge of some profound historical moment that will have far-reaching, literally life and death consequences, both domestically and internationally. Whether opposition to the gathering darkness can be effective is uncertain. But what is not uncertain is our duty to oppose it, even at the risk of committing three felonies a day. “Fellow thought criminals–unite!”

Jim Jatras

Gerald Celente, world renowned trends forecaster and founder of the Trends Research Institute, said the individuals in charge of ruling over our lives are “the same people you hated in high school.” Celente advocates blockchain democracy where everyone votes online with algorithms protecting votes. Liberals love Obama yet he started the war in Syria, he said. Meanwhile, the media keeps taking us to war. A self-described political atheist, he cited the 2011 summer issue of his Trends Journal telling readers to vote for Ron Paul to bring the troops home, end the war on drugs, and dismantle the “Patriot Act” that made a travesty of the Constitution. Celeste noted in the 1980s, the major TV networks cut the heart out of news-making organizations, shutting down their local offices and now 95% of the mass media is owned by six multinational corporations. He cited Scott McClellan’s book “What Happened” in which the former White House press secretary admitted he knowingly passed on false information and President George W. Bush spread distortions lying the American people into the Iraqi war with the official media acting as “complicit enablers.” People who questioned the war were accused of being unpatriotic and dissent was squashed. Private equity groups has bought out most of the media, he said, and now it is up to the alternative media to tell the truth. “They sell us war and hate. You can’t have spiritual growth, beauty and creativity” when we are fed fear and terrorism. “The future is in your hands. It is up to you. Boldness has genius and power in it. If you don’t live for anything, you die for nothing.”

Gerald Celente

Col. Douglas Macgregor, a decorated combat veteran, Ph.D., author of four books, and frequent guest on the top-ranked Tucker Carlson show, told the compelling story of the great tank Battle of 73 Easting during Operation Desert storm. The men he led were valiant but failed generalship resulted in the escape of the Iraqi Republican Guard. Sgt. Nels Moller, the gunner of the Bradley that got hit, was killed. Macgregor wondered what he was going to say to the parents of the slain soldier if he was asked why their son died. Shockingly, Sgt. Moller’s remains fit into a small sandwich bag. Macgregor wrote the book “Warrior’s Rage” about the battle. After he retired, he read Dr. Paul’s book “Revolution” and found himself strongly agreeing with Dr. Paul’s advocacy of a non-interventionist foreign policy and trading with all nations. Much of America’s foreign policy does not make sense to Macgregor. China is not building a military to fight the US, he said, but NATO is blocking its access to the China Sea. Why is the US military engaged in all these interventionist adventures, but the US is not even guarding its own borders, he asked, and dealing with all the criminals illegally crossing over?

Col. Douglas Macgregor

Nassim Nicholas Taleb, essayist, scholar, statistician, former trader, risk analyst and author of New York Times bestselling books, “The Black Swan”and “Skin in the Game,” called Dr. Paul a Roman among Greeks, favoring practice over theory. Taleb once invested in a restaurant, which he advises against, as it is a business that has no peer review mechanism, instead its clients judge. He also noted how restaurants with more than 400 seats do not serve real food. “Any business judged by its peers eventually will rot.” Many traders, he said, are libertarians, and libertarianism is by its nature fragmented. The concept of scaling is important: what works in a small country like Norway doesn’t work in a large country like America. Throughout history, he said, warriors with a vested interest in the outcome, started the wars, but that changed with George W. Bush, the last president who fought in a war. Those who don’t take risks shouldn’t be involved in decision making and the people starting the wars today are incapable of learning, he said. Peace cannot be achieved, he said, when it is promoted at the top; it must be promoted among people at the grassroots level. News used to travel by word of mouth, he said, through doing business or trading – you buy goods, you buy information – but TV changed that. “Censorship never worked before,” he said. “and we are seeing the destruction of the media.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb

A panel of former and current staffers of Dr. Paul discussed strategies to form coalitions: Adam Dick, author of “A Tipping Point for Liberty: Exposing and Defeating Leviathan Government” and Senior Fellow, Ron Paul Institute; Norman Singleton, President, Campaign for Liberty; Chris Rossini, author, “Set Money Free: What Every American Needs To Know About The Federal Reserve,” Ron Paul Liberty Report co-host and webmaster; Paul-Martin Foss: former US House Financial Services Committee staffer; Jeff Deist, Mises Institute president, and McAdams.

Ron Paul former and current staffers Andy Dick, Norman Singleton, Chris Rossini, Daniel McAdams, Paul-Martin Ross, and Jeff Deist.

Reprinted with permission from Musings from Mystic Maverick blog.