Forbes: Bernanke Tells Congress: I Don’t Really Understand Gold

While Ron Paul is no longer part of  the Congressional committees that grill Ben Bernanke twice a year, the Fed Chairman was forced to answer questions about gold on Thursday again.  Asked about the falling price of gold, which is down nearly 25% this year, Bernanke admitted he doesn’t understand the yellow metal.

“No one really understands gold prices,” Bernanke told the Senate Banking Committee, adding he doesn’t get it either.

Gold prices, which have been under intense pressure since at least last September, were actually up on the day, gaining 0.5% to $1,284.20 an ounce by 12:47 PM in New York.


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Video: Fourth of July Reflection, What if we actually had a sound (and constitutional) foreign policy?

On the anniversary of the Declaration of Independence for the GREATEST country in the world, let us reflect as to what our foreign policy should be going forward. What would the founding fathers have wanted? Does our current foreign policy follow the constitution? What does our current foreign policy do to our national debt? Does our foreign policy actually make us safer? Please keep those questions in mind when watching this video…..

Lew Rockwell: Another Nail in the Neocon Coffin

The recent opening of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity was a watershed moment in American history. There has never been anything quite like it. Ideologically diverse, the Ron Paul Institute reaches out to all Americans, and indeed to people all over the world, who find the spectrum of foreign-policy opinion in the United States to be unreasonably narrow. Until Ron Paul and his new institute, there was no resolutely anti-interventionist foreign-policy organization to be found.

Neoconservatives have not responded warmly to the announcement of Ron’s new institute. Whatever their particular gripes, we can be absolutely certain of the real reason for their unhappiness: they have never faced systematic, organized opposition before.

The Democrats would see the earth tumble into the sun before supporting nonintervention abroad, so they pose no fundamental problem for the neocons. Ron Paul, on the other hand, is real opposition, and he can mobilize an army. The neocons know it. What’s Tim Pawlenty up to these days? Where are his legions of well-read young fans who seek to carry on his philosophy? You see the point.

For the first time, strict nonintervention will have a permanent voice in American life. It is another nail in the neocon coffin. The neocons know they are losing the young. Bright kids who believe in freedom aren’t rallying to Mitt Romney or David Horowitz, and, like anyone with a critical mind and a moral compass, they are not going along with the regime’s war propaganda.

At this historic moment, I thought it might be appropriate to set down some thoughts on war – a manifesto for peace, as it were.

(1) Our rulers are not a law unto themselves.

Our warmakers believe they are exempt from normal moral rules. Because they are at war, they get to suspend all decency, all the norms that govern the conduct and interaction of human beings in all other circumstances. The anodyne term “collateral damage,” along with perfunctory and meaningless words of regret, are employed when innocent civilians, including children, are maimed and butchered. A private individual behaving this way would be called a sociopath. Give him a fancy title and a nice suit, and he becomes a statesman.

Let us pursue the subversive mission of applying the same moral rules against theft, kidnapping, and murder to our rulers that we apply to everyone else.

(2) Humanize the demonized.

We must encourage all efforts to humanize the populations of countries in the crosshairs of the warmakers. The general public is whipped into a war frenzy without knowing the first thing – or hearing only propaganda – about the people who will die in that war. The establishment’s media won’t tell their story, so it is up to us to use all the resources we as individuals have, especially online, to communicate the most subversive truth of all: that the people on the other side are human beings, too. This will make it marginally more difficult for the warmakers to carry out their Two Minutes’ Hate, and can have the effect of persuading Americans with normal human sympathies to distrust the propaganda that surrounds them.

(3) If we oppose aggression, let us oppose all aggression.

If we believe in the cause of peace, putting a halt to aggressive violence between nations is not enough. We should not want to bring about peace overseas in order that our rulers may turn their guns on peaceful individuals at home. Away with all forms of aggression against peaceful people.

(4) Never use “we” when speaking of the government.

The people and the warmakers are two distinct groups. We must never say “we” when discussing the US government’s foreign policy. For one thing, the warmakers do not care about the opinions of the majority of Americans. It is silly and embarrassing for Americans to speak of “we” when discussing their government’s foreign policy, as if their input were necessary to or desired by those who make war.

But it is also wrong, not to mention mischievous. When people identify themselves so closely with their government, they perceive attacks on their government’s foreign policy as attacks on themselves. It then becomes all the more difficult to reason with them – why, you’re insulting my foreign policy!

Likewise, the use of “we” feeds into war fever. “We” have to get “them.” People root for their governments as they would for a football team. And since we know ourselves to be decent and good, “they” can only be monstrous and evil, and deserving of whatever righteous justice “we” dispense to them.

The antiwar left falls into this error just as often. They appeal to Americans with a catalogue of horrific crimes “we” have committed. But we haven’t committed those crimes. The same sociopaths who victimize Americans themselves every day, and over whom we have no real control, committed those crimes.

(4) War is not “good for the economy.”

A commitment to peace is a wonderful thing and worthy of praise, but it needs to be coupled with an understanding of economics. A well-known US senator recently deplored cuts in military spending because “when you cut military spending you lose jobs.” There is no economic silver lining to war or to preparation for war.

Those who would tell us that war brings prosperity are grossly mistaken, even in the celebrated case of World War II. The particular stimulus that war gives to certain sectors of the economy comes at the expense of civilian needs, and directs resources away from the improvement of the common man’s standard of living.

Ludwig von Mises, the great free-market economist, wrote, that “war prosperity is like the prosperity that an earthquake or a plague brings. The earthquake means good business for construction workers, and cholera improves the business of physicians, pharmacists, and undertakers; but no one has for that reason yet sought to celebrate earthquakes and cholera as stimulators of the productive forces in the general interest.”

Elsewhere, Mises described the essence of so-called war prosperity: it “enriches some by what it takes from others. It is not rising wealth but a shifting of wealth and income.”

(5) Support the free market? Then oppose war.

Ron Paul has restored the proper association of capitalism with peace and nonintervention. Leninists and other leftists, burdened by a false understanding of economics and the market system, used to claim that capitalism needed war, that alleged “overproduction” of goods forced market societies to go abroad – and often to war – in search for external markets for their excess goods.

This was always economic nonsense. It was political nonsense, too: the free market needs no parasitical institution to grease the skids for international commerce, and the same philosophy that urges nonaggression among individual human beings compels nonaggression between geographical areas.


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RON PAUL: The Internet Tax Mandate Is Backwards Thinking

ron paul

David French, Senior Vice President of the National Retail Federation, the major  industry group lobbying for the so-called “Marketplace Fairness Act,” (more  aptly named the “National Internet Tax Mandate”) recently commented that “….the  law [governing Internet sales]  today is a 20th-century interpretation of an 18th-century document….”  Mr.  French’s comments are typical of those wishing to expand government power beyond  the limits established by the United States Constitution.

Those of us who insist the federal government remain within  the confines prescribed by the Constitution are used to condescending lectures  about how the Constitution is a “living document” whose principles evolve over  time.  I was even once informed by the then-Chairman of the House Committee  on Foreign  Affairs, who was widely considered one of Congress’ leading constitutional  authorities, that the constitutional requirement for a declaration of war was an  anachronism!

While Mr. French may not go that far, he is arguing that  Congress turn the Commerce Clause on its head by passing the Internet Tax  Mandate.  The Commerce Clause was intended to facilitate free trade by  giving the federal government limited power to ensure state governments did not  impose taxes  and regulations on out-of-state business.  Contrary to modern belief, the  Commerce Clause was not intended to give Congress power to regulate every sector  of the economy.  And the Commerce Clause was certainly not intended to  allow Congress to help state governments collect taxes on purchases from  out-of-state merchants.

The National Internet Tax Mandate overturns the Supreme  Court’s 1992 Quill v. North Dakota decision  that states can only force businesses to collect sales tax if the business has a “physical presence” in the state.   Quill represented a rare instance where the  Supreme Court properly interpreted the Commerce Clause.  Thanks to  the Quill decision, the Internet has  remained a tax-free zone, though some states require consumers to later pay  taxes on products they purchased online.  This freedom has helped turn the  Internet into a thriving and dynamic sector of the economy, to the benefit of  entrepreneurs and consumers.

Now that status is threatened by an alliance of big business  and tax-hungry state governments seeking new powers to force out-of-state  business to collect state sales taxes.  Far from updating the Constitution  to fit the needs of the 21st century, the  National Internet Tax Mandate is a throwback to  18th century mercantilism.

The National Internet Tax Mandate will raise the costs of  doing business over the Internet. Large, established Internet companies, such as Amazon,  can absorb these costs, whereas their smaller competitors cannot.  More  importantly, the Mandate’s increased costs and regulations could prevent the  creation and growth of the next Amazon.

Raising prices on goods purchased over the Internet will also  impose an additional hardship on American consumers, many of whom are already  struggling because of the troubled economy.  And giving ravenous state  governments new authority to tax sales made by out-of-state businesses  practically guarantees future sales tax hikes, as the arguments will be made  that most of the increases will fall on out-of-state businesses.  These  businesses will lack effective ability to oppose the tax increases — a form of  taxation without representation.

Contrary to Mr. French, it is the proponents of the National  Internet Tax Mandate who are embracing outdated principles, such as higher taxes  on prosperity, piling more regulations on already over-burdened workers, and  legislation designed to help entrenched businesses at the expense of their  smaller competitors and consumers.  Opponents of the Internet Tax Mandate  recognize that the principles of limited government and free markets represented  by a true reading of the Commerce Clause provide a timeless guide to economic  growth and prosperity.


Click below to read the article on Business Insider’s website by Dr. Ron Paul, former Texas Congressmen and current Chairman of the Campaign for Liberty.

The Week: Why Ron Paul is slamming Boston’s response to the bombings

Ron Paul isn't a fan of the "surveillance state."

Criticizing the Boston Police Department, which has been hailed for capturing Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, isn’t exactly a PC move. Here, however, is former Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) on libertarian Lew Rockwell’s site:

These were not the scenes from a military coup in a far off banana republic, but rather the scenes just over a week ago in Boston as the United States got a taste of martial law. The ostensible reason for the military-style takeover of parts of Boston was that the accused perpetrator of a horrific crime was on the loose. The Boston bombing provided the opportunity for the government to turn what should have been a police investigation into a military-style occupation of an American city. This unprecedented move should frighten us as much or more than the attack itself. []

He goes on to criticize our modern “surveillance state,” and argues that “we have been conditioned to believe that the job of the government is to keep us safe, but in reality the job of the government is to protect our liberties.”

While Paul appears to be alone in equating the reaction to the bombings with the bombings themselves, plenty of commentators from across the political spectrum have voiced objections to how law enforcement shut down the city of Boston. Comedian Bill Maher warned of a creeping “police state” on his show a few days ago, according to Politico.

And others have said the government is prone to overreaction any time terrorism is involved. “Whenever the word ‘terrorist’ is mentioned in this country, reason tends to go out the window, and many other things go with it, too, such as intellectual consistency, a respect for civil liberties, and a sense of proportion,” wrote John Cassidy a couple of weeks ago at The New Yorker.

Ross Douthat at The New York Times argues that such reactions could set a worrisome precedent if terrorist attacks become more common:

Because the Marathon bombing was such an unusual event, the city of Boston could muster a sweeping, almost crazy-seeming response without worrying that it would find itself having to do exactly the same thing six months later. But if such attacks started happening more frequently, as they obviously very well could, then last Friday’s precedent would put public officials across the country in an extremely uncomfortable bind: Repeatedly reproducing the lockdown might seem like a non-starter, yet not matching what Boston did would open you up to all kinds of scapegoating if, say, an on-the-loose bomber struck again.

Last week, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick (D) defended the city’s response, telling The Boston Globe, “I think we did what we should have done and were supposed to do with the always-imperfect information that you have at the time.”

Click below to read the article on The Week’s website.


Republican Mike Rogers led CISPA bill, the Fourth Amendment, and you

Overshadowed by congressional action on guns and immigration is an Internet privacy bill that could affect most Americans, without them knowing it, on a daily basis.

computer servers

The final vote in the House was 248-168, as 42 Democrats voted for the bill, while 28 Republicans voted against it.

And like gun control, it’s far from a done deal after the House passes CISPA. It would need Senate approval, and President Barack Obama has indicated he’ll possibly veto CISPA if it comes to his desk.

Both sides of Congress would need to muster a two-thirds majority vote to override the president’s veto, which would seem unlikely in the current political atmosphere of Washington.

At the heart of CISPA is a Fourth Amendment issue.

The amendment reads:

“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

CISPA is designed to let the federal government work with private companies to fight hackers and cybercriminals in and outside of the United States. As part of the effort to detect cyber threats, private companies could voluntarily share with the government data about Internet users.

The sharing could be done in “real time” as the cybercops try to defeat and track down the evildoers. Companies could also share data among themselves as part of the effort.

There are major drawbacks about the legislation, say CISPA’s critics. The privacy provisions for consumers, they claim, are vague or nonexistent. The government and companies can’t look at your personal data, such as medical records and tax returns, if they are part of the “data dump” that is shared in real time. But the law doesn’t require that companies excise, or edit out, that information in the transfer process.

Another criticism is that a warrant isn’t needed for the government to obtain that information. And companies that share your information won’t be held legally liable for sharing that information, a practice that seemingly conflicts with privacy policies on existing websites.

CISPA’s biggest critic in Congress is a representative from Colorado, Jared Polis. The Democrat told the House on Wednesday, “This is the biggest government takeover of personal information that I’ve seen during my time here in Congress.”

Mike Rogers, a Republican representative from Michigan and the House Intelligence Committee chairman, is leading the CISPA effort, along with Dutch Ruppersberger, a Democrat from Maryland.

Rogers believes the measure is long needed. “People were stealing their identities, their accounts, their intellectual property, and subsequent to that, their jobs,” he recently said. “[Web users] began to question the value of getting on Internet and using [it] for commercial purposes. Their trust in the free and open Internet … was at risk.”

He has also stressed that participation in CISPA is voluntary for companies.


What do you think about this clear violation of the fourth amendment?  Michigan residents living in the 8th US Congressional district can reach out to Mike Rogers to give their opinion of his bill:

Office Information
2112 Rayburn House Office Building Washington, D.C. 20515 Phone: (202) 225-4872 Fax: (202) 225-58201000 West St. Joseph Suite 300 Lansing, Michigan 48915 Phone: (517) 702-8000 Toll Free: 877-333-MIKE Fax: (517) 702-8642To Send an e-mail:

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More on the Gold Price Drop

Earlier we posted Peter Schiff’s thoughts on the gold price drop.  What do you think, is this a market correction?  Will the price of gold rise as the economy and the dollar weaken or has the economy stablized?

Below are a series of articles on the topic with information and varying opinions on the subject.

Gold plunges to lowest in more than 2 years

Zero-Hedge: What happened the last time we saw gold drop like this?

Daily Paul: Gold and Silver Doom and Gloom or Crack Up Boom?

Ben Bernanke Swamps the Gold Bugs

Business Insider: The Gold Collapse Is Personally Costing Ron Paul A Fortune

CNN Money: Gold plunges to two-year low

Reuters: Gold investors run for the exits, prices suffer biggest-ever drop

Ron Paul: “The Neo-Conservative Era Is Dead”

Former Congressman Ron Paul, the libertarian icon, is launching a new institute “for peace and prosperity.” A “media advisory” posted on his Facebook page Friday explains:

The neo-conservative era is dead.

Former Congressman Ron Paul will hold a press conference this Wednesday to launch his next big project: the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity. After decades in and out of the US House of Representatives leading the call for a non-interventionist foreign policy and the protection of civil liberties, Dr. Paul is launching a revolutionary new vehicle to expand his efforts. The Institute will serve as the focal point of a new coalition that crosses political, ideological, and party lines.

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