Here are the words of The Gipper, Ronald Reagan, and presidential candidate Ron Paul, side by side. In 1976, Ron Paul was one of only four congressmen to support Reagan against the establishment. The two have much in common.
Ronald Reagan: "The Federal Reserve is answerable to no one."
Ron Paul: "The government will audit a waitress to make sure she pays taxes on her tips, but they won't audit the Federal Reserve."
Ron Paul: "Let it not be said that no one cared, that no one objected once it's realized that our liberties and our wealth are in jeopardy."
Ronald Reagan: "If this globe is to live in peace and prosper, if it is to embrace all the possibilities of the technological revolution, then nations must renounce, once and for all, the right to an expansionist foreign policy. Peace between nations must be an enduring goal, not a tactical stage in a continuing conflict."
Ron Paul: "We cannot spread our greatness and our goodness through the barrel of a gun. It fails because it destroys our goodness in the process."
Ronald Reagan: "We know too what happened in the Brezhnev era: greater and greater expansionism; Afghanistan, economic decay and overwhelming corruption; a greater and greater burden on the peoples of the Soviet Union, and on all the peoples of the world."
Ron Paul: "This is usually how empires end, by spending too much money maintaining their empires. We are now in 130 countries. We have 700 bases around the world. And it’s going to come to an end. I want it to come to an end, gracefully and peacefully. Let's just follow the Constitution and follow a more sensible foreign policy."
Ron Paul: "I think the whole sentiment toward war is shifting. We can’t even fight without borrowing money from the Chinese. It really doesn’t matter whether I’m right or wrong. The wars are going to end because we are going to have such a political and financial havoc here at home that — with the devaluation of our dollar — that they will have to stop."
Ronald Reagan: "What if we were to ask their [Russian] mothers, sisters, and sons, do you want war? Ask us, too, and you'll find the same answer, the same longing in every heart. People do not make wars; governments do. And no mother would ever willingly sacrifice her sons for territorial gain, for economic advantage, for ideology. A people free to choose will always choose peace.
“Americans seek always to make friends of old antagonists. After a colonial revolution with Britain, we have cemented for all ages the ties of kinship between our nations. After a terrible Civil War between North and South, we healed our wounds and found true unity as a nation. We fought two world wars in my lifetime against Germany and one with Japan, but now the Federal Republic of Germany and Japan are two of our closest allies and friends.”
Ron Paul: "Throughout the 20th century, the U.S. has steadily drifted from the traditional policy of nonintervention, neutrality, and independence to one of interventionism in the internal affairs of other nations, covert foreign activity, and broad international commitments.
“This dramatic shift in policy, one of the major U.S. blunders of this century, is responsible for all of our overseas military conflicts of the past eight decades, which have resulted in more than 650,000 Americans killed and 1,130,000 Americans wounded.
"The last two major conflicts, Korea and Vietnam, were fought without a formal declaration of war. In modern language, they were ‘police actions.’ Since war was not declared, there was no commitment to win. Clearly the efforts proved futile, serving only to tear at the seams of American society.”
Ronald Reagan: “The Soviet-American relationship, once marked by sterility and confrontation, is now characterized by dialog — realistic, candid dialog — serious diplomatic progress, and the sights and sounds of summitry."
Ron Paul: “There’s nothing wrong with spreading our values around the world, but it is wrong to spread them by force. We should spread them by setting an example.”
Ron Paul: “If we think it is our responsibility is to spread democracy, then let’s make sure we have it here.”
Ron Paul: “Those who advocate the traditional policy of nonintervention are ridiculed as isolationists by the authoritarians who want the U.S. to decide all disputes. Yet it’s their interventionist policies, especially in the last six years, which have isolated us, reduced our allies, and increased our enemies.”
Doug Wead is a New York Times best-selling author and a former adviser to two American presidents. He is senior adviser to the Ron Paul presidential campaign.
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