Ron Paul; by the numbers

   I have come to the conclusion that people really don’t wish to support a candidate without understanding what effect the candidates platform will have on them economically.  That being the case, I thought I’d share with you The fiscal impact Ron Paul’s vision will have on you.  First, I’ll give it to you scientifically.

1.   uh, I dunno.

That takes care of the scientifically derived at numbers for Ron Paul’s issues.  Now we shall move on to the rhetorical.

1.  uh, I dunno.

   You see, Ron Paul isn’t giving us any numbers.  There is nothing substantive in what he says.  He will save us money by ending the war, but then he will spend it defending our borders.  There is no economic model designed to tell us what his constitutional form of government will cost/benefit us, but rather merely the assurances of the good Dr. and his merry men.  I suppose a Robin Hood analogy is inappropriate, because from what I can tell the one thing that is certain is that the poor will be screwed severely by a Ron Paul presidency.  That hardly matters of course, because poor people vote democrat, don’t they?  Hardly, but they aren’t going to be voting for Ron Paul.  They know he hates them, as do any liberals that have paid attention over the last two decades of Ron Paul in office.

    The crossover vote isn’t going to happen.  The vast left wing media armada will put the boots to Ron the minute he appears to be a viable candidate.  The left wing blog world already has, and if you read the daily kos you know what I mean.  Basically, Ron Paul’s only supporters are those who dream of a mythological kingdom where honesty and fairplay conquers reality, and a small time doctor can live his dream of  colonial domination.

   Show me some numbers.  Anybody.  Give me something tangible that would make me think Ron Paul would make my life better.  Don’t offer me his dream of freedom, because freedom in todays society is something you have to take.  Don’t give me more rhetoric about the free market making everything right.  The free market has long been fraught with fraud and corruption, and in no way benefits the vast majority of American people.

   It’s smoke and mirrors gang, until he proves otherwise, and thats why the mainstream media doesn’t cover his campaign.  There is virtually nothing to cover.

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45 Responses to Ron Paul; by the numbers

  1. Numbers? says:

    You ask about numbers. Tell us about the numbers the other presidential hopefuls give us. Or is your critisim applicable to all the players?

    Ron Paul is the only one who speaks with, logic, integrety and honesty. He is the only one who is sincere about smaller government.

    We will just get more of the same with any of the other presidential hopefuls.

  2. mike says:

    Here are some numbers:

    Over 3,000 US soldiers dead in Iraq. NO MORE DEAD SOLDIERS FIGHTING AN UNJUST WAR UNDER A RON PAUL PRESIDENCY.

    SPending over $11 Billion a month on the war in Iraq, spending approaching $900 Billion annually on all of our over seas interests. NO MORE MONEY ON FOEREIGN INTERESTS.

    Most working americans pay about 30-35% of their income on FEDERAL INCOME TAX, plus an additional couple percent on SOCIAL SECURITY (you know that failed program which will be bankrupt within 20 years). I don’t how much money you make, but take a look at your next pay stub for another number, the amount of FEDERAL INCOME TAX and SOCIAL SECURITY you’ve paid this year alone. Imagine that money in your pocket RIGHT NOW.

    Ron Paul would work hard to make these dreams a reality. He can’t do it (and wouldn’t want to) all by himself, but as the man in the highest executive office he would certainly have some influence.

  3. Beth says:

    Well, you are certainly entitled to an opinion, as is everyone. I think we’ll have to agree to disagree. Maybe some of these things will be answered in the upcoming debates. Stay tuned. Now as to your Robin Hood theory, I think you’re being a bit simplistic. I’m not sure how much is being spent on the borders right now but my guess is we could easily double or triple that amount and not spend anywhere nearly what the war in Iraq is costing us and certainly it would not cost us in lives the same. I’m sorry but I haven’t heard any specific numbers from other candidates either, but the one thing I do know is that the big corporations, and the lobbyists are making out far better in this society then anyone else. Why is it the poor aren’t any better off, as a whole, with all the socialism we already have? Why is it the vast majority of working class Americans still have to cover medical care out of pocket at rates that many cannot afford? Certainly the statistics that I have seen do not bear out Big Government helping out a majority of working class and poor citizens but I sure have seen big companies getting richer us. The average report from the mainstream media does not cover Ron Paul (my opinion) because he would be highly popular and they’re afraid he will be elected. They know that if that were to happen they’d be cutting their own pursestrings. Also, they might have to expose some of what’s really going on in the USA that many people aren’t aware of (like the Patriot Act).

    Well, suffice it to say, once again, you’re welcome to decide what you will. That’s the way things should be, but as for me I’ll just stick with Ron Paul.

  4. hi numbers. Several candidates have numbers on several different issues. You are right though. None of them are clear enough overall. The difference is Ron Paul is asking for wholesale change in government. This looks nice from afar, but the reality could be catastrophic. I think therefore a little substance would be added to his argument if he’d give some quantifiable statistics to support his claims.

    hello Mike… yes he will immediately stop the war. Which will of course have potentially disastrous ramifications. That’s an obvious difference. yes, 900billion spent globally. He’ll end that, which WILL HAVE disastrous ramifications. When the 30-35% that we pay becomes paid to the state instead of paid to the Fed, how much richer will you be? That’s my point. Show me how state run governments controlling things is a leaner way of doing business, and I’ll happily sign on. As far as influence..were you alive during the Carter administration?
    Hi beth…by big corporations do you mean those entities that grant us our jobs? and as far as lobbyists, do you mean the AARP? A lot of lobbyists are genuinely concerned about the welfare of honest Americans, and it isn’t appropriate to malign them all for the malignancies of the many. All I’m asking for is is an honest assessment of how it will be cheaper, and inherently better. Why is that a bad thing?

  5. Sean says:

    criminyjicket if states started to tax 30-35% of wages people would have a choice of where they want to live. The great thing about federalism is that there are 50 states. That means there can be disparities between them giving people choices. If one state takes 30-35% you can move to a state that doesn’t. Right now the federal government gives the states all kinds of mandates they must meet in order to get any of their money back. If Ron Paul can eliminate some of that you will get more variety in state mandates and taxes.

    As for numbers. I don’t have time to look them up specifically right now. federal budget is approaching 3000 billion. Controlling the border would probably cost about 20 billion. 1/150 of the current budget. Most of it a one time expenditure to get the fence built. Ending foreign aid and bringing home the troops will save 100s of billions a year. The ramification will be other countries will have to take their own defense seriously. Getting the government out of health care will bring prices down. Seriously why do you think a stay in a hospital bed costs 10k a night? Do you know the law of supply and demand. Limit supply and prices sky rocket. Medical society is kind of like a medieval guild system. Medical schools are limiting the amount of qualified applicants they will accept. There are laws preventing qualified nurses from taking over simple procedures. Laws making people pay a full price doctors fee just to fulfill known prescription needs.
    I myself am not well off and come from a lower middle class family. Let me tell you government doesn’t do crap for the poor and only takes from them and gives them hassle.

  6. hi Sean…the you can move from state to state thing only works if you are into the nomadic life style and I have no idea why I would be. Build a fence? Do you think a fence is going to secure our borders??? you won;t get government out of health care…you will get more state government into it…its a simple switch…i don’t see the savings

  7. Ernie says:

    Perhaps Ron Paul doesn’t have the details worked out about some of his economic policies, but the fact of the matter is he is the ONLY candidate who is truly conservative and wants to seriously cut spending across the board. The numbers might not be available, but look at the bigger picture: our government cannot continue to spend endlessly while borrowing and printing money to make up the debts. I’m no economist, but logically, it doesn’t make any sense.

    That’s where Ron Paul appeals to people: he makes sense. He himself has said that he won’t just start slashing everything, but rather use his influence to ease the nation off government dependence. If you think that government can continue to spend rampantly and not pay consequences down the line, then go ahead and criticize the fact that Ron Paul hasn’t laid out his plans for economic reform. But if you want to look at the bigger picture, and understand why he is so popular, realize that he is the only one who wants to seriously control and shrink government. How he does that is to be seen, but his philosophy and record make the most sense, especially when considering what made the U.S. the most prosperous nation on earth.

  8. hi Ernie. Your comment relies on at least a couple of false premises. The first is that a 20 year congressman who has never been able to build a coalition to change anything will suddenly be granted the ability to do so. The second is that he is wildly popular. He has a very vocal core group of true believers, but has failed to inspire growth in his base.

    thanks for coming by

  9. J.C. says:

    I could nitpick on any cnadidate this way. The question voters have to ask themselves is do they want the corrupt business as usual that will bankrupt our country due to excessive spending while the entire world hates us for our failed attempt at nation building, or do we wish to take risk to make things better through no more empire building, saving a ton of money on wasteful government, etc.

    Either way COULD fail. The question is who do you trust? Who inspires you? Who is not bought and paid for? Who has integrity? In the authors case, obviously not Ron Paul, but I for one am willing to risk change for a better future as the staus quo provides no future.

  10. hi J.C. I fear you have no idea what I believe, but that notwithstanding, Ron Paul creates a huge risk/reward quandrary for the electorate. I’m merely pointing out that nothing he claims has any standing. There is no model to judge where his policies would leave us, and you may be willing to risk it, I’d like a little more detail before I make that choice. No children, right? I mean, its there world he will shape, not yours.

  11. Warren says:

    The numbers that Paul often uses: 1 Trillion dollars spent on maintaining US military outposts in over a 175 different countries. He’d close down Rammstein/Germany, DMZ/Korea, Okinawa/Japan, and of course, Iraq.

    The numbers we know: the DoD was billed $999,798 to ship two 19-Cent Washers. This is the kind of out of control spending that we can bring our military home. (Stop policing the world, as RP says).

    So far, he’s given two different programs he’d like to fund with the savings generated from ceasing non-essential foreign military operations- beefing up border protection, and covering the shortfall in the entitlement programs (WIC/SCHIP/MediCare/Medicaid/Social Security). He’s also said that currently, we’ll have a hard time paying baby boomers is because we’re raiding the social security trust fund to expand funding for other programs.

    He’s offered basically the same idea that Al Gore proposed: a lockbox on the Social Security Trust Fund, which when combined with the savings from the troop withdrawal, he says will help to cover the baby boomers’ retirement.

    He’s said before that he wants to get the budget back to 2000 levels by getting rid of No Child Left Behind and dramatically paring down the Department of Education, by getting rid of the Patriot Act and re-visiting the wisdom behind the merger of intelligence and other agencies into DHS. He would be putting the rest of the New Deal era 3-letter agencies on a diet too. The moneys from scrapping those would allow us to get rid of the income tax altogether, since it only accounts for 1/3 of Federal revenue.

    Hope those numbers help give perspective as to what precisely Dr. Paul is hoping to accomplish in his 4 years in office. Some of the more idealistic things he talks about are not possible within the context of a 4-year administration, especially one that has a Democratic Congress. There is a deep-seated national resentment of NCLB and the National TamperID programs, so he would be able to scrap NCLB and Patriot acts, but the whole gold dollar thing, I doubt he’d be able to push through, even in 8 years.

  12. J.C. says:

    I have three children. I see a future for my children with less government spending. Understand this about Ron paul – the only thing he can immediately do as Prez and Commander in Chief is move troops around and bring them home. Otherwise there are checks and balances on what he wants to do through congress. The fact of the matter is that he is easily the most fiscally conservative member of congress who has voted for the least amount of spending of virtually all of his peers. I doubt congress will allow him to do many of the things he wants to do, but he will also veto all this crazy spending. We currently have to borrow $2.5 billion a day from the Chinese to fund this insane war. China owns hundreds of billions of dollars of cold U.S. cash. Bush and the neo-cons got us in this mess and Ron Paul is the only one talking about getting us out. China has spoken about the “nuclear” option of dumping our dollars and lending their money elsewhere. BOOM – Great Depression revisited. I trust Ron Paul to give direction to sound fiscal policy while all other candidates – both parties, just want to spend, spend, spend.

  13. Ernie says:

    False premises? What I said had nothing to do with his successes in congress or his popularity so far, only his ideas. By saying that people see him as “making sense,” I never implied he is wildly popular. Of course, the perception of the nation will need to change from a dependency on government, but that doesn’t make his ideas any less correct.

    “The first is that a 20 year congressman who has never been able to build a coalition to change anything will suddenly be granted the ability to do so”

    He has said himself that the perception of the nation needs to change before serious progress can be made. Did you seriously expect a TRULY fiscal conservative (a position that can be deadly to your political career) would be able to convert the hundreds of other congresspeople who would never cut spending, lest they lose in the next election. The man has stuck to his beliefs, and has been fortunate enough to be running in a district that understands how important it is what he does in standing up for principles. Otherwise, the entire congress is just playing re-election games.

    Both of your “false premises” were not premises for what I was saying, so my original statement stands.

    Ron Paul is, to many (though apparently just a vocal few), the only candidate who sees things clearly. His plans might not be detailed, but he has the right idea and that’s what makes him so attractive.

  14. J.C. says:

    Also, all the candidates talk in sound bites, but at least Ron Paul says it like it is.

    Ron Paul is the only candidate with ta comprehensive library available regarding his policy. Why? Because he has nothing to hide. Do your own research. I’m sure you can pick it apart if you want and use it as writing material to bump up your page views.

    http://www.ronpaullibrary.org/

  15. Ernie says:

    I also read your reply to J.C., and I thought it was funny that you mentioned our children’s future. The future is being borrowed away by runaway spending by our government, so those of us who support Paul are very much concerned about our children’s future. I’m only 20, so my future is at risk here, as well.

    Like I said, the values Paul stands by are the basis for what made this country so successful. What other measure do you need to verify they can work? Living within your means of production and cutting the fat on government seem like good policies for the future for me.

  16. hi Warren…they would if I were an isolationist. I’m not though, so the thought of him withdrawing all military personnel from around the globe is a bit unhinged from where I sit. Certainly not Okinawa.
    The washers were a case of fraud that was actually caught, and tracking fraudulent use of taxpayer dollars would be a good improvement on government.
    Dramatically paring down at the federal level alleviates federal taxation, but merely puts the onus of these programs onto the states. This does not change my dollar output. that’s where the problem comes in. Is it really cheaper to have 50 fiefdoms? I think not.

    hi JC…yes, I understand the checks and balances, and I understand mutual defense accords, and long term leases for bases overseas. You will see little savings there, as we will still have to honor previous commitments. I lived through the Carter administration and know how much an unpopular with both houses of congress president performs. Ron Paul would be unpopular with almost everyone on the hill. His obstructionsit attitude would help mire Washington even deeper in the rut it currently inhabits. As far as his library, or lew Rockwells site for that matter is concerned….I get my ron paul reading at vote-smart as they are unaffiliated and not a supporter of the candidate…thanks for the link though.
    Ernie…i’ve never slandered or maligned Ron Paul on a personal level and consider him a decent sort. I merely think his policies would be disastrous, and barring any proof to the contrary can’t support him. I think there is room between huge government run amok, and carefully crafted constitutional government insanity.

  17. and hear i thought it was being traded away on the free market for the sake of globalism.
    I’m not quite sure how the constitution views social security, but I’d have to think not to kindly. Any president that will agree to cancel social security and return to me the money I’ve invested in it can have my vote with pleasure. Ron Paul isn;t the answer on social security or taxes. He merely makes one indefensible under his view of government, and relegates the other to state control

  18. J.C. says:

    So the author really does not need to learn anything. He or she has obviously made up his or her mind. Me thinks the author just likes to build his or her ego by thinking and believing he or she is right and all others are wrong. I sense more than a bit a egomania and quite a bit of narcissism. The author, as he ir she states, is most certainly not trying to learn anything or to understand Ron Paul. The author made up his or her mind, is all knowing, and is getting cheap and pathetic thrills by attempting to tout his or her intellect. How sad.

  19. well thought out J.C. I’m not sure where you got that. I read constantly about Paul, just not on Pauliac sites. I like my facxts without the drum beating. I’m almost never certain I’m right, and when it comes to a fix for this country I’m likely as wrong as most. What I do know is that you have failed to impress me with your knowledge or debate skills, and have yet to see any numbers…that’s all I want…something tangible to show that Ron Paul is less risk than reward. I’m sorry you are unable to give that.

  20. J.C. says:

    You’ve gotten quite a few “numbers” in this thread. No other candidate offers anything any more concrete. You strike me as an arrogant, self-serving shill.

  21. Hi J. C.no, I haven’t. Explain to me how states running everything wil be cheaper than the fed running everything. Have I called you any names? Why the hostility? Because I disagree with you?

  22. J.C. says:

    Not because we disagree. You are disengenuous. For instance, I can’t stand Giuliani. So, why don’t I start a thread on a blog asking people to convince me why I should vote for Giuliani even though I can’t stand his policy positions and nobody will change my position. Why would I do such a thing – except for some demented ego gratification and/or to increase hits to my webpage and brag about how “smart” I am to my friends? What you see as hostility is what I see as the truth about you. No anger from me. You are rather sad, actually.

  23. J.C. says:

    Also, let me give you a simple example. Each state has its own Department of Education. We spend tens of billions on a federal Department of Education. Getting rid of the federal department of education saves tens of billions a year and will hardly cost the states anything more. Sames goes for the EEOC – each state already has its own version. It’s a duplicate waste of money on the federal level. Department of Homeland security is a $100 billion waste. Please tell me what it is doing that state law enforcement is already not doing? Not all federal operations should go, but there are so many duplicates on the state level it is a no brainer. Have you thought this through, or do you really believe that every federal agency is stand alone, and many don’t have state counterparts?

    However, you will prove my pint of the psot before this by alreadyt having the answers pre-set as to why Ron Paul is so bad when you asked for posters when you started this thread to help convince you – yet you went in immediate attack mode. Sad and pathetic.

    So here is my question to you – what does the federal Department of Education do that the state counter parts already are not doing and why do we need to spend tens of millions a year on the federal version? You won’t be able to answer and you will deflect to some other issue.

    Department of Energy. Tens of millions of dollars. Close it and open energy to free markets with some minor regulation on the state level. Put on YOUR thinking cap and seek answers yourself, instead of starting a thread where you have already made up your mind with only one thought in mind – to put down Ron Paul and his supporters.

    For that matter, tell me who the best candidate is, tell me why, and I’ll give you some of your own koolaid.

  24. Scotty J says:

    obviously not every state would put into practice the bloated programs our federal govt now enjoys. im sure there would be some states that would choose to have more and some that would choose to have less. But here’s the kicker oh wise one, if i dont believe in social welfare programs i can CHOOSE to go to another state. But wait it gets even better, even if i do want something like socialized medicine, i can CHOOSE to go the the state that affords me the best benefits with the least amount of taxation… therefore creating a quasi-market between the states and breeding healthy COMPETITION. What do you think the populace of state A is gonna say when they see state B’s citizens getting the same benefits for half the cost. Unfortunately that scenario is impossible when federally controlled. And one last brain teaser… at what level of government can ordinary citizens exert the most influence over and possibly remove horrible programs like SS that you seem to be against?? ill give you a hint…it isn’t the big boys over in DC

  25. Barry says:

    The answer is RECESSION and ECONOMIC DEFLATISM (is that a word). First the banking industry will attack his presidency by seriously slowing the economy (starting at Federal Reserve of course). The only way to make the transition away from the bottomless pit we are headed for – is for each american to do with less. Stop getting loans. Start actually saving money.

  26. Steven says:

    It’s in the news; Fraud waste abuse.
    http://www.sunherald.com/411/story/128363.html

    Where to start? The always excellent chronicler of such things, Citizens Against Government Waste (http://www.cagw.org), offers a road map in its publication, “Prime Cuts 2007.” CAGW estimates that if all of its 750 recommendations for cutting unnecessary and wasteful spending were enacted, taxpayers would save $280 billion next year and $2 trillion over five years. According to the CAGW, we send $1.1 trillion of our money annually to Washington (and more to state and local governments). Demanding responsible spending from elected officials might prove to be a winning issue.

  27. Alexia says:

    One reason that running everything by the states would be cheaper is that there would be one less level of beaucracy. I also assume that local corruption costs less than federal corruption.

    Ron Paul has also said he would use the money saved by not policing the world to fund the 70 trillion dollar social security obligation that’s not reported in the oft-quoted “national debt” figure.

    Ron Paul knows more about economics than any other Presidential candidate than we’ve ever seen. In fact, it was economics (not politics, not power) that drove him into office.

    There are certainly some points you can make about Ron Paul’s weak areas, but “money” isn’t ever going to be one of them.

    And for the record, I have 2 male children. Their generation is already saddled with debt they’ll never be able to pay during their lifetime.

  28. Alexia says:

    PS: Robin Hood was stealing from the king to give money back to the over-taxed serfs.

  29. mike says:

    The point isn’t that states would have to run the things feds aren’t running, it’s that some of the things the feds are running NO GOVT agency needs to run. DEP of Education, school system (even public schools) were just fine before this DEB existed, DEP of energy (sound like a good idea, but how do beuracrats know anything about energy) let the people (market) make the best choices about enery consumption, DEP of homeland security, please tell me one useful thing this department has done in the past 4 years. The only thing i’ve heard is that they screwed people in louisiana when they’re massive beuracracy in conjuntion with FEMA couldn’t respond in time.

    And By the way, do you have to be an isolationist to believe that we shouldn’t have troops in over 130 countries?

  30. hi Mike. The marine security guard program pretty well gaurantees troops wherever we have an embassy. Are you saying civilians with guns would be better? and yes, wholesale removal of American forces around the globe would involve a bit of isolationism. The schools actually ran better before the DOE, but not necessarily cheaper. Removing the organization doesn’t lessen the cost, nor gaurantee higher standards. Why do people keep responding to this very simple post without any numbers? is it that hard to find an equyation to defend an entire platform?

  31. J.C. you see, there is the difference. I can stand Ron Paul, and I personally feel on a lot of issues he is the best candidate. I’m merely trying to get to the bottom of the whole it will be run cheaper by the states thinf.
    There are several government agencies that could be done away with, but I doubt any of them are as big a waste as you think they are.
    I notice that you only list two organizations that are incorporated to ensure equality in learning and in employment? Do you have a problem with a federal program designed to ensure equal opportuinity? The DOE has a sound mandate, is run poorly. What you and the rest of the pavloviasn legions articulate is its broke throw it away. The proper response should be its broke, but its useful so lets fix it. You have yet to do anything but invoke the same chest thumping nonsense that I get from so many Pauliacs. I wouldn’t post at all if it wasn’t for your more intelligent brethren. Maybe its your incurable youth causing this, but it may be simple entitlement theory…you think you deserve more than your fellow man, and somehow feel that you would survive in a more Darwinian social order. I tend to doubt it.

    hello Scotty J…I keep hearing those two themes. The free market will cause states to be responsive to their elecotrates, and you can always move. Moving is hardly an option for most people. Familial ties, economics, and a host of other reasons make it impractical. State and local governments can be responsive now, and aren’t. I don’t see how giving them more responsibility will make them better able to cope with the issues currently on the agenda. It would be more practical to attack fraud and corruption in government than to give more power to the states, thereby placing the federal government in a position of having to constantly mitigate the disputes created by having 50 powerful entities trying to one up each other.

    hi steven…you can’t demand anything without support, and he has none. Granted he has a small rabid following, but he has no political support, and isn’t likely to have any. He has had 20 years to build a coalition and has failed to do so. Maybe thats because his ideas are unsound, or maybe everyone else is out to make him fail. I’m not sure which. Thats why i was curious about his numbers.

    Barry: wow, a kewpie doll winner. It’s interesting that society rails against government waste and indebtedness, while in reality it only mirrors the society at large.
    Hi Alexia…I’m nor sure there would be one less level of bureaucracy. Merely a change in what the upper level does. as far as Robin Hood, I believe the story line goes “steal from the rich, and give to the poor. I believe that is the liberal agenda, and while I find it distasteful, it is quantum leaps better than the conservative “enslave the poor to the betterment of the rich” stance.

    thanks for all your comments…I’m not maligning your fearless leader, merely looking for clarification. You wouldn’t know it to read some of them, but I get a lot of very well thought out responses from Ron Paul supporters, which makes the pauliacs all the more annoying, and counterproductive.

  32. bhday says:

    CJ – as always, a lively discussion! I must say that I’m less concerned with the lack of specific budget projections from Rep. Paul’s campaign than the CURRENT numbers that shape our present reality:

    Current National Debt: $8.9 trillion ($5.0 trillion held by public, $3.9 trillion by government)

    National Debt in 2006: $8.5 trillion ($4.9 trillion held by public, $3.6 trillion by government)

    Interest Expense on National Debt in 2006: $406 billion ($222 billion on debt held by public)

    Largest departments by expenditure in our federal government (2006):

    Department of Defense: $633.9 billion
    Health and Human Services: $627.4 billion
    Social Security: $593.1 billion
    Department of Veterans Affairs: $113.8 billion

    * Note that since Social Security SHOULD be paid out of a completely separate, and sacrosanct, trust fund, it should not compete for tax receipts. Which means that the interest payment on the national debt is effectively the third largest “department” in the federal government! *

    How does this compare with the size of the economy?
    GDP (2006 current dollars): $13.2 trillion

    * Our debt, which is being used to fund operations, is 67% of our national “income”. It’s one thing to borrow money to invest in an asset you expect to appreciate in value, or to generate income. That’s called leverage. But consistently borrowing money just because you can’t balance your operating budget — well, that’s called stupidity. Unless you’re the federal government, that is. *

    Where do we get the money that we spend (2006)?
    Individual Income Taxes: $1.0 Trillion ($1.8 Trillion including earmarked deductions)
    Corporate Income Taxes: $350 Billion
    Additional Deficit: $247.7 Billion

    Tax payments by AGI and percentages (2004):
    Top 1%, with AGI >= 328k, pay 37% of taxes
    Top 5%, with AGI >= 137k, pay 57% of taxes
    Top 10%, with AGI >= 100k, pay 68% of taxes

    Sources:
    http://www.treasurydirect.gov/NP/BPDLogin?application=np
    http://fms.treas.gov/fr/index.html
    http://www.ntu.org/main/page.php?PageID=6
    http://www.bea.gov/national/index.htm#gdp

    As Ron Paul has said, we can’t begin to address our fiscal crisis unless we question the role of government. That questioning can’t stop at the federal level, although I think it needs to start there. Since states can’t create money (they HAVE to balance their budgets), the have a built-in limit on their ability to grow. But the federal government, with its unique ability to monetize its debt, has shown itself unable to exercise even the smallest shred of self-restraint.

    But hey — maybe I shouldn’t be so concerned with these figures. In fact, since the national debt doesn’t really matter, why don’t we just do away with the income tax entirely and fund our government ENTIRELY with borrowing? What does it matter if we add to the deficit by $250 billion with tax receipts of $1 trillion, or just borrow $1.25 trillion? That way we can have our cake and eat it too.

    On the other hand, there’s someone else who doesn’t see it that way. His name is David Walker, and he’s our Comptroller General in charge of the Government Accountability Office. His recent report (http://www.gao.gov/cghome/d071188cg.pdf) was written up in the Financial Times here: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/80fa0a2c-49ef-11dc-9ffe-0000779fd2ac.html
    I’d encourage anyone who isn’t yet concerned with our government’s profligacy to the point of insanity to read these two articles. And you should also learn to speak, read, and write Chinese.

    Finally, I think it’s reasonable to conclude that a Constitutionally-limited federal government with state governments that funded everything they wanted to in the context of the 10th Amendement would be a vastly cheaper and more cost-effective form of government. Why can I make that assertion? Three reasons:

    1) Every time the federal government picks up a new area to regulate or fund, it typically steps on the toes of, or competes with, existing state regulations and agencies. Education and energy are perfect examples. If a state hasn’t seen fit to regulate something, why is relying on a newly-omnicscient Guardian of the Public Good in Washington a good thing? And when the Feds *do* show up at the party, it’s not like the state bureaucrats just give up and retire. You still have Departments of Education in every state. Can you show me an example of a federal department, that if eliminated, would require creation of new bureaucracies at the state level? I’ve racked my brain and come up empty…

    2) The federal government’s other favorite trick is the “unfunded mandate”. That involves passing a federal law that requires the states do something, but doesn’t provide funding to do it. The RealID act is a perfect example — how are the states going to fund this national ID card? Well, that’s your state’s problem. Maybe they can just reduce Medicaid benefits so we can all smile and show our papers. Oh and did I mention Medicaid? The federal government has decreed that your state has to provide that to illegal aliens, as well. There’s irony in there somewhere, if only I could find it…

    2) Most importantly, the federal government ALONE has the power to run an unbalanced budget funded by deficit spending. Sure, state and local governments can float bonds for capital expenditures like schools and roads, but they can’t just “borrow” money like the feds through the Federal Reserve System to finance an operating deficit. Like I said, try that technique yourself at home. You won’t like the results!

    A final note — I do share some of your frustration with the lack of specifics articulated by the Paul campaign. And my own primary research has shown that one widely-quoted Ron Paul statistic, namely that income taxes only account for 1/3 of federal revenues (http://www.ronpaullibrary.org/document.php?id=199), is not in agreement with top-line numbers from standard sources. In fact, the $1.8 trillion collected from income taxes is 3/4 of the $2.4 trillion in overall federal revenue.

    If you pull out earmarked deductions, the remaining $1 trillion collected in “general” income taxes *is* approximately 1/3 of the $3 trillion in federal budget expenditures (in 2006). But that’s a big difference from his assertion that income taxes comprise 1/3 of all federal *revenue*.

    Again, all of these numbers are straight from the Treasury Department’s annual report at http://fms.treas.gov/fr/index.html.

    In my final analysis, any candidate who understands the consequences of our federal government’s reckless expansion and articulates a clear desire to restrain it based upon consistent (in this case Constitutional) principles deserves to participate in the campaign for office. Unfortunately, such an analysis currently leaves only one viable candidate, and no real possibility for intelligent debate.

  33. hi Barry…only 67%? Thats far better than the average household which is languishing under debt equivalent to 3 to 4 times annual income.
    that’s not germane though. The numbers are bad. Fraud, waste, and corruption amount for a lot of those dollars, and the fact that much of our government functions poorly is a leadership matter. 20 years. A man that wants term limits has set in his seat for 20 years, and accomplished nothing. Not one thing he has said leads me to believe he has a viable answer. While the numbers you post are scary, they don’t live up to the unknown future costs of the Ron Paul experiment… no coalition, no numbers, no record of accomplishments…yes, he is a different style candidate, and like Obama, I’m not sure I like the change

  34. […] Paul by the Numbers Criminyjicket does it again: I have come to the conclusion that people really don’t wish to support a candidate without […]

  35. Mike says:

    He can’t give numbers because he doesn’t control Congress, so can’t know for sure what measures he will able to get passed. One thing we can be sure of is a freeze in the growth of the size of government under a Ron Paul administration, this would mean lower government spending as a percentage of GDP as the economy grows.

  36. hi Mike…good point. Particularly the government won’t get any bigger.

  37. bhday says:

    CJ — think about what that 67% *is*… If someone earns $100k per year, and carries $67k in debt, it matters what they’ve bought with that $67k. Is it a mortgage on a house that they live in, and expect to appreciate over time? That’s a small mortgage, and a good deal. Is it student debt to get a degree to increase one’s earning power? Ok, maybe that’s a good deal.

    But what if the debt is just money that was spent on vacations, clothes, furniture, food, and other consumables? That kind of sucks. There’s no asset on other side of that liability. In our case, what are we getting? Advanced weaponry? Guaranteed supplies of cheap oil? Hmmm… wait a minute. Maybe it isn’t that bad.

    As long as we have the guns, people should be willing to loan us the butter. Sweet. Objection withdrawn 🙂

  38. barry…i concur…much of our debt is wasteful spending, and the battle should be fought there. Incidentally, do you happen to know how Ron Paul voted on NAFTA? I don’t see his name on ayes and nays list….

  39. bhday says:

    Paul wasn’t in Congress when NAFTA was “approved” in 1993 (http://clerk.house.gov/evs/1993/roll575.xml). (He wasn’t in Congress from 1984-1996, but was reelected from 1997 to present). However, his statements leave little doubt that he would have been against it:

    http://www.ronpaullibrary.org/document.php?id=736

    There’s more where that came from, just search for “nafta” at http://www.ronpaullibrary.org...

  40. thats right…he was roaming around doing racist writings (just kidding…that was one of the better angles I saw for his absence, though they didn’t link to anything) thanks

  41. PAFreedom says:

    I was disapointed to read this statement on Ron Paul. You say he would end the war but than spend it on the border?

    Ron Paul has plans to save over 1 trillion dollars and in no way would that all go to border control.

    Many dems/libs appreciate Paul’s principles on the ongoing war on terror and how to prevent terror attacks in the future. I don’t hear many other talking about the future in that regard. They, and numerous other independents, also like the steadfast support of civil liberties: free speech, the Patriot Act, tracking/tapping, etc.

    I hope you continue to look into the views and not just accept spin alley soundbites.

    For freedom,
    LewRockwell.com
    RonPaul2008.com

  42. hello PA.. I don’t really go by soundbites. As far as border security, we have better than 5000 miles of land border, and I have no clue hw many miles of sea border. Add to that the ports, and all the scanning eqpt etc that would be required to do anything even close to actual secure borders, and I think $1 trillion would be a low ball estimate.

  43. Warren says:

    Criminy, I don’t see how withdrawing non-combat forces from countries we haven’t been at war with in over 50 years is isolationist.

    Right now, our Iraq forces are National Guards on multiple, extended, service tours. This leaves states in deep trouble when natural disasters strike, like the annual wild fires in the West, the annual tropical storm/hurricane damage in the Gulf and Atlantic.

    By withdrawing our forces from abroad where possible, we can save money, and save face. By acknowledging that imperialism was a mistake, we would win back the trust and admiration that other countries once had for us. The idea that it is the role of the US to take care of other countries is based out of Manifest Destiny, White Man’s Burden and mercantilism/Imperialism

    Btw, what’s your objection to withdrawing from Okinawa?

  44. hi Warren…soldiers shouldn’t be used for firefighting and flood relief anyway. As far as manifest destiny and Imperialism, I disagree and disagree again. I think Okinawa is an important strategic outpost that should be maintained. China being the issue. I know y’all have this dream of a 1000 foot high wall surrounding the country. It’s just not a real good idea to withdraw from the world the way so many of you envision doing under Paul

  45. Ron Holland says:

    Read and sign the Ron Paul Is Right – Abolish the Federal Reserve Petition at http://www.petitiononline.com/fed/petition.html

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