Ron Paul: ‘US involvement into affairs of other states leads only to trouble’
The US has neither the authority, nor the right to determine what is best for other people, Ron Paul told Boom Bust host, Erin Ade. Once American people were supposed to know what the government was doing, but now all the efforts in Washington seem to be to make government very secretive, and the fact is that the US is not improving its influence in the word, but causing more harm to the American people, Paul said.
RT:What concerns do you have about American involvement in Ukraine?
Ron Paul: There are several. First, I don’t like our government getting involved into affairs of other people and leading only to trouble. I would have followed the admonition of the early founders of our country that we should not be involved into the entangling alliances throughout the world, nor into internal affairs of other nations. Whether it is the Middle East, Northern Africa or Ukraine, I apply that principle. So I do not believe it is to our benefit, I do not think it helps our national security, I think it hurts our national security. I do not think it helps in this particular instance the Ukrainian people. I think it would be best for everybody for us to just stay out. Besides, we do not have the money. We have to go borrow the money if we decide. And we are already spending money on this effort in Ukraine and I do not think we should be doing it.
RT:I take it you believe the money spent by the US abroad would be better used to shore up our finances here. In your view what role does the US have in terms of projection of power or as a global supercop.
RP: It’s mainly to develop friendly relations with as many people who are open to it. I was delighted with the collapse of the Soviet system and I was delighted with our efforts to end it. A lot of trade is going on not only with former communist nation China, but also with Russia. We have invested 500 billion dollars in Russia and they have invested 400 billion dollars outside. So there is a lot of trade going on.
So it sort of defies this idea that a few people are stirring up enough trouble where they want to ruin all that. So my effort in the world is to promote trade and promote friendship, promote travel, at the same time not be involved in trying to determine what is best for the other people. I do not want to do that in individual lives and I don’t want to do that for other governments and other peoples. In spite of many problems out there, it is just impossible for us to do this and we do not have the authority and we are not going to be welcomed, and we do not have a reason to do that. If things should be done to help people in trouble overseas, it should be done from our viewpoint of liberty, it should be done voluntarily and American people have been very generous in helping people when they are in trouble, but I want our government, our people to stay out of affairs especially when they come to violence and militarism.
RT:Some people believe that US political and military involvement in places like Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and Ukraine is a bid to maintain US global wealth by maintaining US global domination. What is your view on the subject?
RP: I think there is a lot to that. There are interested countries, whether it is Russia or China, when they invest overseas they go maybe the same, and America goes or used to be there. We are much more likely to have global presence by trading and investments, and having friendly relations. But now we have fallen into the trap of saying “Well, that was not the whole reason we went to the Middle East. Oil was the issue, there were other issues as well.” But China and other countries that are investing overseas, they are investing in oil and different things, and right now we are giving Russia a tremendous incentive to go and do more deals with China, India and other countries where, if the market was working, we might be able to better provide these trade agreements than when we make trouble and people resist what we do. That is why I do not think it is in our best interest.
RT:Inside the US we have a policy whereby the NSA collects data on US citizens en masse allegedly to mine data in order to deter future terrorist attacks. Are you concerned about this data collection and its impact on US citizens and businesses?
RP: There are some whom I don’t understand in our Congress, who say “Oh no, we must do it and this is the way we have safety.” This is more a principle of an authoritarian dictatorship. I am a strong advocate of privacy, I complain so much because our own government is very secretive in a free society. Once we were supposed to know what the government was doing but now all the efforts in Washington seem to be to make government very secretive and we are not allowed to know what is going on. If somebody tells us the truth they are charged with treason. Instead of looking to our Constitution, the 4th amendment protecting our privacy, actually the NSA are doing exactly the opposite. So our government is not acting in the way it was intended to, and some of us are concerned about it. I am very optimistic with a lot of young people, and there are still a lot of Americans who have been complacent, but they do not think, “Oh, I want to give up my freedom because government is going to take care of me.” Quite frankly, right now they are starting to realize that all governments, the more authoritarian they are the more inept they are. And that’s why you see collapses of so many empires around the world. I think right now we are not improving our influence in the word but actually we are causing more harm to the American people.
RT:The US has about 5 percent of the global population, but 35 percent of the global wealth. And this discrepancy seems to be contracting. What should the US do about that contraction?
RP: If you mean the 35 percent is going down, I wouldn’t measure the statistics, I would measure the measurement of freedom. A free society that is productive and has property rights and trade is going to have more wealth because that’s what a free country does. So if there is a discrepancy between the US and a country in Africa which has no property rights and no freedom and no industrialization, what they need is the concept of liberty, free markets and sound money, what the property rights mean and contract rights mean. So you do not want to say, “Well, if there is an imbalance in wealth we have to redistribute wealth” – that is not the answer to the problem. The answer to the problem is how the wealth gets created. We used to know how to do this. Today we think the wealth is created by the Federal Reserve. We are not producing wealth. And foolishly, foreign countries are still taking our dollars. As long as foreigners take our dollars we are going to be doing this, but this is going to diminish our wealth. Statistically, the freer a country is the more wealth it is going to have and they should never be held down for that. They should not be criticized for having wealth if they have earned that wealth.