April 22, 2009
The financial crisis was caused by excessive credit, too much printed money and government debt and can’t be solved by the federal bailout of banking, insurance and car companies, U.S. Rep. Ron Paul said last night at Wake Forest University.
“If we don’t clean up this mess, big government will take away our liberty,” Paul said. “The bailout is as bad as the financial bubble.”
Paul, R-Texas, spoke for about 40 minutes at Wait Chapel to more than 800 people, including WFU students, Winston-Salem residents and people who supported his campaign for the president’s office. The Wake Forest Young Americans for Liberty and the Wake Forest College Republicans organized the event.
Paul, 73, ran unsuccessfully for the Republican nomination for president last year. He ended his campaign in June 2008 after Sen. John McCain wrapped up the nomination.
During his campaign, he argued for libertarian principles and against the Iraq war. Paul supports limited constitutional government, no income taxes, free markets and monetary policies based on commodity-backed currency.
A native of Pittsburgh, Paul graduated from Gettysburg College with a bachelor’s degree in biology in 1957.
He later received a medical degree from Duke University School of Medicine in 1961. He served as a doctor in the U.S. Air Force and Air Force National Guard for five years. In 1968, he began his medical practice in Brazoria County, Texas.
As a specialist in obstetrics and gynecology, Paul has delivered more than 4,000 babies, according to his campaign biography. In November 2008, he was re-elected to another term in the U.S. House. He represents the Gulf Coast region around Galveston, Texas.
Paul talked about his beliefs during a speech that the audience interrupted several times with applause.
Paul advocated a return to the gold and silver standard to back up the American dollar rather than the Federal Reserve System continually printing money. That practice will eventually lead to devaluing the dollar, he said.
He called for the repeal of the 16th Amendment that allows Congress to collect income taxes. Paul said that Americans should keep and spend all the money they earn, and Congress should cut spending to balance the federal budget.
Paul touted a bill that he recently introduced, named the Federal Reserve Transparency Act. It calls for a government audit of all Federal-Reserve operations by the end of 2010.
He also took a shot at President Obama. Paul said that the president’s proposed budget gives a nine percent increase to the U.S. Department of Defense. He described the spending as unnecessary.