Fun on Friday: Happy Birthday Ron Paul!
Yesterday was Ron Paul’s 85th birthday and I thought it would be apropos to use this Fun on Friday space to pay him a little tribute.
I had the privilege of interviewing Dr. Paul for my GodArchy podcast the day before his birthday. He is sharper at 85 than a lot of 30-year-olds. And his energy is amazing. Even in retirement, he’s still working hard, hosting his Liberty Report program, writing articles and doing interviews.
Sometimes I feel like I’m the only person in the “liberty movement” who didn’t get involved through Ron Paul’s presidential campaigns. I was a little late to the party. I first became aware of Ron Paul during the 2008 campaign. I heard snippets on the news about him and heard Rush Limbaugh mention him a few times. But I was still firmly entrenched in establishment . I immediately adopted the standard conservative mantra, “I like that Ron Paul, except for his foreign policy.”
But I do remember one incident that made an impression. I was living in St. Petersburg, Florida at the time and the city hosted a presidential debate. I remember walking out of my apartment and seeing a plane that was lit up with the words “Google Ron Paul.” Of course, I didn’t do it because I already knew I didn’t like his foreign policy. But I do recall thinking that this guy must have a pretty devout following if somebody was willing to pay for a plane to fly over the city.
I eventually embraced liberty – including Ron Paul’s foreign policy – through my work at the Tenth Amendment Center. So, I can’t share any kind of come to liberty moment thanks to Ron Paul. But he still indirectly had a big impact on my journey because he was a huge influence on a lot of the people that led me down the path.
The thing that really stands out about Dr. Paul is his integrity. He took unpopular positions and stuck by them. He didn’t stick his finger in the air and parrot some lame talking points. He said what he believed – over and over and over again. I’ve been told that Dr. Paul never changed his speech. Whether he was talking to Republicans, or Democrats, or moderates, his message was the same. End the wars. End the Fed.
Ron Paul mainstreamed the phrase “End the Fed!” Virtually nobody in the mainstream mentioned the Federal Reserve and its nefarious impact on the economy before Ron came along. There was no movement to audit the Fed, much less end it.
From what I understand, some of his campaign advisors pushed him to avoid the topic of the Fed during his presidential runs. It was too wonky, the said. Nobody understands central banking and they don’t care to. But Dr. Paul thought it was important. As I have said, the Fed is the engine that powers the biggest most powerful government in the history of the world. So, Dr. Paul talked about it — over and over again. And guess what? It resonated with a lot of people.
Ron Paul is like that. He has a way of motivating interest in subjects that you would think nobody would ever care about it. Just consider the fact that Dr. Paul managed to get high school and college kids interested enough to read economic tomes by Rothbard and Mises.
There aren’t many people in politics that I can honestly say I respect. Ron Paul is one of the few. So, happy birthday, Dr. Paul! May you enjoy many more.
Fun on Friday is a weekly SchiffGold feature. SchiffGold News editor Mike Maharrey digs up some of the off-the-wall and off-beat stories relating to precious metals and shares them with you – with tongue firmly planted in cheek. Or sometimes he just shares random thoughts. The whole point is to lighten things up and get the weekend off to a good start. Click here to read other posts in this series.