Monthly Archives: October 2016

Trump’s Term Limit Proposal Would Have Shut Up Ron Paul

Today, in Gettysburg, Donald Trump proposed term limits on Congressmen. This anti-democratic proposal, which denies to voters the right to choose whomever they want for Congressmen in the House of Representatives, is obviously an anti-Libertarian proposal, although many so-called Libertarians seem to advocate it.paul 19

Term limits clearly violate the Right to choose our Congressmen. But more damningly, term limits mean that if any very effective or wildly popular Libertarian Congressman were to arise, they’d quickly be thrown out of the political arena, probably to be replaced by one of the hundreds of mediocre bipartisan Congressmen who infest the halls of Congress.

A clear example of the damage that could be done by Congressional Term Limits is that of Congressman Ron Paul, who served 12 terms in the House of Representatives, where his Libertarian voice was heard for many years speaking sanely on many of the important political issues of those times. Term limits, such as Trump is proposing, would have gagged Ron Paul, and had a severely deleterious influence on the propagation of Libertarian-Jeffersonian principles of government to the People. Ron Paul is a clear example of that rare Congressman whose ideas have an influence far beyond that on their local electors. In Dr. Paul’s case, his experience in Congress was a springboard for his three Presidential runs, which inserted Libertarian ideas and arguments into the American body politic in a way that no Congressman limited to two terms could have ever done. Indeed, Dr. Paul is still regularly sought out on major media sites for his opinions, as anyone searching his name on Youtube will see instantly. This very original and iconoclastic thinker would have been shut up if Donald Trump’s term limit proposal were the law of the land.

Ironically, Ron Paul has also advocated for Congressional term limits. Apparently he himself does not see the danger such an anti-democratic proposal would have on the Republic.

In my view, there should not be term limits on any elected political offices in America, save for the Presidency. And the Presidency is too powerful an office not to apply a term limit to. Unfortunately it seems that Presidential term limits have been overridden by Presidents having their children or spouses run for office, creating family dynasties which Jefferson railed against when he spoke about the landed gentry ruling the country through dynasties (and restricting voting to only those who had a large amount of property). America has had the Bush dynasty, and now, tragically, we may have a Clinton dynasty, Heaven forfend, or, if Trump  is elected, a future Trump dynasty. The idea that only certain families are competent to serve in the White House should be voted against, and this is a very strong argument for voting against Hillary Clinton, just as it would have been if Jeb Bush had been nominated.

If a majority of voters in a Congressional district vote to elect the same person over and over, that is their Inalienable Right. The solution of term limits, because almost all the members of the House of Representatives as mediocre bipartisans, should not be resorted to out of practicality because it precludes the possibility that some really radical, revolutionary Congressman like Ron Paul could ever have a huge impact on national political thought, while at the same time it violates the Right of the voters to choose whomever they please.

So, as Libertarians, let us vigorously oppose term limits for Congressmen, but retain them for the Presidency.

— Paul Grad, 2014 Libertarian Party of Oregon Nominee for Governor

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Oregon Measures 94 to 100 2016 Election: My Recommendations

My recommendations, as a self-styled Libertarian, on Oregon’s 2016 Ballot Measures, are as follows:

Measure 94, which amends the Oregon Constitution, and removes the mandatory retirement age of 75 for judges, obviously deserves a “yes” vote. The idea that judges at 75 suddenly become incompetent to rule on cases is absurd. Indeed, jurisprudence is something that probably improves with age, as the judge is exposed to more and more cases. Moreover, there are already ways of removing any judge who suddenly goes “gaga”.

Measure 95 is a vile, heinous measure that would tie the financial health of government universities to the performance of the stock market. Here is another measure designed to give government backing to the price levels of stocks, i.e. private corporations. One can see the damage such cozenage has done to the Japanese economy, where the central bank has been buying stocks for years. Obviously, government entities buying stocks ties an entire nation’s economy to the fortunes of the stock market, and gives another “too big to fail” reason for the Federal Reserve to print more money to “bail out” the stock market, while it dilutes your purchasing power and makes you poorer. Indeed, the Federal Reserve is already preparing the public for such a massive theft by talking about the necessity of buying “securities” — ironically the most insecure investment there is besides buying a government lottery ticket. This measure is designed to defeat the “separation of government and private business”, which has already been defeated at the Federal level. Libertarians believe in separation of business and state, just as we must have separation of church and state, and separation of education and state. The failure to maintain such separations is a major reason for the steady decline of America as a civilization. Vote “no” on measure 95.

I oppose Measure 96, which would earmark 1.5% of lottery earnings for veterans services. While this may be a worthy use of the money, I oppose it for two reasons. Firstly, because I strongly oppose the lottery itself, which puts the State in the position of promoting vice, and destroying the financial well-being of its citizens. So any good-sounding reason for the lottery merely increases its attractiveness to the public. Secondly, the military and veterans affairs are provinces of the Federal Government, not of the State, and any aid to veterans should come out of the Veterans Administration and Federal Funds, not State funds. Any money the lottery players of Oregon save the Federal Government will quickly be absorbed by the next billion-dollar stealth plane the Pentagon builds. So vote No on 96.

Measure 97, the supposed tax on corporations in Oregon, has been well-exposed as another scheme to transfer monies from poor Oregon consumers to the wealthy, well-fed retirees of the Oregon State Pension boondoggle, PERS. Currently there are at least 1,195 PERS recipients receiving at least $100,000/yr as a pension. One receives $55,000/month, and four years ago I counted 12 that were receiving over $212,000/yr. Any funds looted from the public through increased costs for corporate services will surely go into these bloated, immoral pensions, which well illustrate the legalized theft possible under socialist governments like Oregon has had under Governors Kitzhaber and Brown. Vote “No” on 97, unless you believe in robbing the poor to maintain the cushy lifestyles of wealthy retired State bureaucrats.

(Note that in 2014, when I ran for Governor, I proposed a corporate income tax while eliminating the personal income tax. My tax would have begun at 1% for corporations with profits of $10-$100million, rising slowly from $100million to $1billion. Corporations making $1billion or more would have paid 8%, which is the current personal income tax rate on individuals making $30,000.)

Measure 98 is another ripoff you should definitely vote “No” on. It provides $800 per high school student to prevent and discourage drop-outs. The Government schools in Oregon are so lousy that many teens can’t wait to get out from under this royal wasting of the time of their youth. If the schools were really interesting, and had anything truly relevant to a youth’s life, there would be no “drop-out” problem. But children, who can’t vote, are the easiest group to exploit in our society, and the huge bureaucracies that make a fortune running the Oregon School system are not about to lose all that filthy lucre by having their victims drop out of it. Therefore they say let’s throw more money at the problem that their own existence has created. Government schools are a curse on children, and we should vote against any continuance or further financial aid to them.

Measure 99 is another one that indirectly promotes the State lottery and sends yet more private sector funds to the rotten government schools. It would give 4% of lottery funds to provide “outdoor schools” for 5th and 6th graders. (And one must wonder about the logic behind this measure since the weather for outdoor classes is most inclement during the Oregon school year.) Just like Measure 96, it encourages people to play the lottery for what seems like a good cause. I wonder how many children have been left parentless because the Oregon Lottery caused their parents to become financially destitute and commit suicide. The Lottery, besides being Immoral and outside the sphere of Jeffersonian Government, financially destroys the lives of countless people, whose tragic stories never become public. Let’s rid ourselves of this outrage known as the Oregon Lottery.

Measure 100 is an obvious “yes” vote if you consider yourself an “Enviro-Libertarian” as I do. While the measure is flawed, it is basically an anti-hunting measure, and I oppose hunting in all its forms as legalized animal torture.

So in summary here are my recommendations on Oregon State Measures: 94-Yes, 95-No, 96-No, 97-No, 98-No, 99-No, 100-Yes.

—Paul Grad, 2014 Libertarian Party of Oregon Nominee for Governor

Trump vs. Clinton: The Capitalist vs. The Corporate Socialist

Though I originally planned to vote for Gary Johnson, and said I wouldn’t vote for Trump, I’ve come to the conclusion that a vote for Trump is an existential necessity, given the war-mongering  Corporate Socialist Clinton, and the way her brand of Fascism is destroying the country.

paul 19If you wanted one good reason to vote for Trump over Clinton, it would be the avoidance of nuclear war with Russia, and the probable tearing up of the Iran Deal, a deal which guarantees a nuclear weapon within a few years to a war-mongering, belligerent Theocracy. It’s basically a choice of Peace over War, and War is the great enemy of Free-Market Capitalism.

But beyond those reasons, we are really being given a choice between a Capitalist and a Corporate Socialist, who embraces all the free perks that Socialism can send her way, a choice between a man who has made his own money in a heavily socialist society, and a woman who has made her money by kowtowing to the largest corporate interests in America, and the most despotic Christian-hating, Jew-hating, woman-oppressing, totalitarian regimes in the Middle East.

I thought, about five years back, after rooting for Ron Paul, and seeing his campaign run up against the Republican establishment, that the only hope for America was an independent billionaire, who did not have to spend his time fundraising, or pleasing the main elements in his party, but who could speak his mind and finance his own campaign. That billionaire turns out to be Donald Trump.

The “campaign finance reform” laws have made it virtually impossible for anyone in America to get elected to office unless they are an independent billionaire, or able to raise millions of individual donations. Since donations to political candidates are now limited to $2,700, it would have been virtually impossible for me to raise enough money to run an effective campaign when I was the Libertarian Nominee for Oregon Governor in 2014. If a millionaire, or a billionaire had wanted to give me a million dollars for my campaign, it would have been “illegal”, a clear violation of the Right to do what you want with your money as long as it doesn’t violate the Libertarian Non-Aggression Principle. The Democrats and do-gooders, in their unthinking rush to do something sounding good like keeping “big money” out of politics, have virtually guaranteed that no poor person could ever attain major political office, and that those that can will always be the willing stooges of the two major parties. The fact that so-called “campaign finance reform” violates the Right to use your money to pursue your happiness (by donating it to a worthy, revolutionary candidate) is quickly thrown under the bus.

We should be grateful to Donald Trump for destroying the pathetic Republican Party, and for wiping out all the candidates in that Party who were ready to go fisticuffs with the Russians, with the exception of Senator Rand Paul. Good riddance to that bunch of nothings.

There are other virtues to the Trump candidacy. Here is an amazingly energetic man at 70, who can hold two or three campaign rallies in a day. Trump is also very bright (he graduated at the top of his class at Wharton), and you will notice that he never flubs a line in his speeches, or uses vocal “ahh, umm” pauses like the President does. Unlike Jill Stein, he doesn’t have to say “you know” seven times in every sentence. Moreover, to run a huge business, and make constant decisions that cost millions of dollars, require a brain that can function efficiently and rationally. Apparently Trump has such a brain, and that’s the kind of brain you’d want in a President.

Additionally, you have to admire the fact that Trump has never used a drug, not even caffeine, although one should keep in mind Norman Mailer’s observation that small town wisdom distrusts the man who never takes a drink or who has never been drunk because they know that “devils are inside in that man, waiting to bust out”. That certainly seems the case with Trump, when he lets his mouth run ahead of his mind. And though he doesn’t use drugs, it is obvious that he uses food as a substitute.

Now, there are many things I don’t like about Trump’s platform and manner. His bashing of Mexicans, where he actually called them rapists if you listen closely to the speech, and his juvenile making-fun of a severely disabled reporter, are disgusting. His plan to build a fence along the Mexican border (although he makes no mention of the Canadian border, where many Middle Eastern refugees and immigrants have settled) seems unrealistic. His Tariff policy is certainly anti-Capitalist and shows he hasn’t read or understood Professor Murray Rothbard, since the money saved on cheaper, tariff-free foreign-made goods ends up in the bank balances of US Citizens, which strengthens the country more than foreign tariffs on US-made goods hurt it. Still, he has a point that foreign tariffs hurt our trade deficit, and he’s probably right that foreign countries will have to lower or end their anti-Capitalist tariffs if he threatens them with retaliatory tariffs. His absurd notion that our military is falling apart, and we need to beef-up our conventional weapons, must have the arms manufacturers salivating. He seems to have forgotten our fleet of nuclear weapons.

But you can’t have it all in one candidate (except for me — go read my platform).

But at a more fundamental level, a vote for Trump is a vote for Capitalism over and against the Corporate Socialism of Clinton (which is actually Fascism if you read its founder Mussolini’s definition of it). And Free-Market Capitalism is an essential element of Classical Liberalism, the philosophy of Thomas Jefferson and the Libertarians. While there has never been a purely Capitalist society, except among so-called primitive tribes who use shells or cattle as currency to trade with other tribes, and never a society that has existed with the amazing modern technology, which has the capacity to end human drudgery, it is also true that the most Capitalistic, Free-Market societies like the old U.S., Great Britain, and the Netherlands, have been the freest and most tolerant societies in history. Capitalism promotes human dignity and economic prosperity; Socialism always destroys it, as it is destroying modern America. Under Capitalism, the Consumer is King and votes in the market place with his money; under Socialism, the central planner, politician or Fuhrer is king. In that sense Capitalism is democratic and Socialism is authoritarian. Every Socialist society that has existed has economically and socially fallen apart, as currently the US and Europe are falling apart.

Finally, let me add that voting for Gary Johnson is not going to prevent a nuclear war with the Russkies, and many of Johnson’s policies, like mandatory vaccinations and his support of the TPP, are anti-Libertarian. He also has virtually no charisma, which is important in a political candidate. The last straw for me was when he called Clinton a “dedicated public servant” which is unbelievable coming from a candidate who purports to be a Libertarian, and in light of Clinton’s behavior. Where were all the trenchant criticisms of the Democrats, and their whole corrupt system, that used to come from the lips of Ron Paul?

So whether its with enthusiasm, or by default, the causes of World Peace and Capitalism necessitate a vote for Donald Trump for President.

— Paul Grad, Libertarian Nominee for Oregon Governor in 2014