Ron Paul: Champion of greed, not liberty

The good news for Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) is that more than any other Republican, he has defined the debate from the Republican side. Give him credit. The bad news about Dr. Paul is that for practical purposes he is the Ayn Rand champion for the most greedy big banks, job destroyers and job exporters. The worst news for American consumers, American workers and American jobs is that Dr. Paul's Ayn Rand philosophy is an epic financial and human tragedy for them.

Ron Paul is an Ayn Rand libertarian, but not a populist. In fact, Paul is the anti-populist apologist for the worst abuses of Gilded Age greed. He wants these abuses to continue in the name of a fictional "free market" that no longer exists. He cheers while these abuses flourish in what Paul calls "liberty" but in fact is the liberty of the greed of the few to cheat and abuse the rights and hopes of the many.

Dr. Paul means well, but fails to understand that monopoly is not liberty. Oligopoly is not freedom. Ripping off homeowners and borrowers is not liberty or freedom, it is ripping off homeowners and borrowers in a market that is not free when consumers are not given real choices.

Exporting jobs is not liberty; laying off workers is not freedom; destroying the rights of workers is not liberty; free trade with slave wage nations is not liberty or freedom.

There is no "magic of the marketplace" unless the marketplace is truly free. A free market is more than mergers and acquisitions, more than charging credit card interest rates similar to what the Mafia used to charge, more than firing workers to increase short-term profits, more than throwing homeowners out of their homes with paperwork that is often phony when those who throw workers out of their homes often cannot even prove legal ownership of the mortgage in a "market" that often became a fraud, a joke and a human tragedy.

The Founding Fathers would be turning in their graves to hear words like "liberty" and "freedom" being used to justify such abuses, but this is what Dr. Paul, and many other Republicans of the Ayn Rand persuasion, would do.

Notice I am not giving any big endorsements here of President Obama and his economic team. They are no more populist than Dr. Paul. At best they are marginally better. At worst they are symptoms of the great surrender of true progressive populism in the tradition of the great Democratic presidents, and Republican presidents such as Abe Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt, who are nowhere to be seen in the high councils of Washington today.

I have described a long litany of abuses in this note. I would ask supporters of Dr. Paul, and other Republican supporters of this dark Ayn Rand vision, to tell me exactly how they would stop these abuses.

Write comments that specifically detail how Dr. Paul would stop these abuses, and I will praise them. But giving a lot more money to the wealthiest individuals and companies only continues the trickle-down of the great abuses of our Gilded Age. Tell me what Ron Paul would do to stop these abuses, and I will applaud his measures, if you can name them.

Or, Dr. Paul and his supporters should just admit that they support these abuses, in the further abuse of the word "liberty.” This would outrage the Founding Fathers if they were with us today to defend their dream against impostors who call it liberty, but advocate selfishness and greed, and call it freedom, to excuse corruption and fraud.

I stand with those who dumped the tea into the Boston Harbor, not the king and the conglomerates of his age who backed him, and tried to sell them the corrupted tea.