A British-American bluestocking living in the UK writes about politics, pop culture, and emerging new paradigms as they unfold on both sides of the Atlantic. (New content.)

Sunday, 29 May 2011

The Last Tolling Bell for Freedom: Ron Paul's Speech to Congress

Congressman Ron Paul

A few days ago, I read a blog from someone in Europe and this is what they wrote: "Watching America right now, is like watching a train wreck in slow motion."

The United States government is no longer doing anything in hiding. Their expansionist policies are blatant, right out in the open and guess what?  The Great Prozac Nation isn't even blinking. (And if the drugs aren't working, the Nintendo will.)  Most Americans are more concerned about "Jersey Shore" than the radioactivity washing up on their own shores.

Why should the average Americans care? They were brought to their knees economically, and when someone cannot find a job to feed their family, it's easy for Washington to ramrod policies that are pulling out liberty at its very root. Those of us who are watching from outside the States see it clearly, the big tsunami of bureaucracy, taxation and overegulation and the strong-armed tactics being used in the Middle East under the guise of  "helping". Billions are being poured into the war machine, meanwhile, Mr Joe America cannot find a decent paying job nor does he qualify for food stamps either. He falls into that grey area of  "not enough money but too much". America is busy bailing out other countries, but it cannot seem to find money to keep a factory in America open. Why is this?

And as the economy is in an abyss that is seemingly unending in its depth, Washington is very skillfully maneuvering to impose more limitations and laws in the name of  "securing freedom". Since when does securing freedom involve the abolishing of basic constitutional rights?  The blatant and unmitigated use of force, the disregard for the rule of law is threatening to bury America and I wonder if anyone is really watching.

In one of the most eloquent speeches before Congress of recent years, one that I feel will go down with the famous "Eisenhower Military Industrial Complex" speech, Congressman Ron Paul said:

"The last nail is being driven into the coffin of the American Republic. Yet, Congress remains in total denial as our liberties are rapidly fading before our eyes. The process is propelled by unwarranted fear and ignorance as to the true meaning of liberty. It is driven by economic myths, fallacies and irrational good intentions. The rule of law is constantly rejected and authoritarian answers are offered as panaceas for all our problems. Runaway welfarism is used to benefit the rich at the expense of the middle class. Who would have ever thought that the current generation and Congress would stand idly by and watch such a rapid disintegration of the American Republic? 

He continued: Characteristic of this epic event is the casual acceptance by the people and political leaders of the unitary presidency, which is equivalent to granting dictatorial powers to the President. Our Presidents can now, on their own:
1. Order assassinations, including American citizens,
2. Operate secret military tribunals,
3. Engage in torture,
4. Enforce indefinite imprisonment without due process,
5. Order searches and seizures without proper warrants, gutting the 4th Amendment,
6. Ignore the 60 day rule for reporting to the Congress the nature of any military operations as required by the War Power Resolution,
7. Continue the Patriot Act abuses without oversight,
8. Wage war at will,
9. Treat all Americans as suspected terrorists at airports with TSA groping and nude x-raying.

(To hear the rest of the speech, see below--please do not miss this)

Is there any hope for America? Is there any hope that the country that held a torch of liberty for other nations on the planet will ever find its own way back to being the republic of the free?

How ironic that as we watch the "freedom fighters" in the Middle East, the masses of protestors who want transparency, who desire freedom, who are marching for an end to dictatorship...Americans are losing their own freedoms. It isn't just ironic, it is soul-wrenching.  

In a speech to the National Organization for Women in 2003, President Obama said that he would repeal the Patriot Act. And when he was voted into office many of us believed that doing away with the Patriot Act was part of the change that was going to sweep America into the new Presidency of transparency. We were wrong.

Apparently, the new Presidency of transparency meant allowing TSA members to see your privates in full bloom (or withering on a dried-up stem)  on an x-ray screen. Frankly, that's the one change we all could have done without.