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October 24, 2014

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Damon Political Report

Ron Paul’s message of fiscal restraint may fall flat in recession-weary Nevada

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Leila Navidi

Republican candidate for president Ron Paul talks during an interview at the Venetian Tuesday, October 18, 2011.

Ron Paul is having an I-told-you-so moment.

Running for president four years ago, Paul spawned a movement of mostly young political outsiders with doomsday talk of deficit spending and manipulation of the monetary system leading to economic ruin.

Perhaps nowhere else in the country did the movement take off like it did in Nevada, where his passionate followers fueled a second-place finish in the caucuses and hijacked the state convention in an effort to send Paul delegates to the national convention.

Now, Paul is seeking to build his following into an electoral force large enough to win the nomination. And he believes the economic collapse ignited by the bursting of the housing bubble, which he predicted well before it occurred, has given his message a credibility it lacked in 2008.

“We are winning this intellectual fight,” he told the Las Vegas Sun in a recent interview. “Last time they didn’t know what I was talking about. Now they do.

“The regulated economy and the inflation economy has brought us to our knees. It’s brought the world to its knees.”

But while Paul is positioning himself as the oracle of the collapse, just being right about the consequences of a burst housing bubble isn’t necessarily enough to draw a bigger political following, especially when his prescription for fixing the situation is to simply let the crisis run its course until the market can restore balance — especially when unregulated risk-taking with easy money played a major role in the financial industry’s collapse.

In Nevada, once home to a contingent of voters hungry for Paul’s brand of fiery rhetoric, that hands-off approach appears particularly painful.

The economic recession has led to a 13 percent unemployment rate. More than 60 percent of Nevada homeowners owe more than their house is worth, and, for many of them, their house likely will never again be worth what they paid for it. In September, one in every 118 Nevada homeowners received a foreclosure notice.

Paul’s grin-and-bear it approach might be more likely to shrink his appeal than grow it.

“For 15 percent of Nevada voters, they’ll say that’s exactly what I need,” UNR political scientist Eric Herzik said. “They’ll say I didn’t make those mistakes. I’m tired of bailing out people who made bad decisions.

“But outside of his base, to say ‘Oh, I was right,’ I don’t know that gets you anything. Particularly when the answer to the question ‘What are you going to do about it?’ is ‘nothing.’ ”

Republican strategist Robert Uithoven echoed that point.

“I don’t think voters spend as much time looking back as they do looking forward,” he said. “Voters more look at whether somebody has credible plans to address the problems. Simply saying you were right about policies in the past doesn’t differentiate you from other candidates.”

Paul strenuously disagrees with that notion. He argues the pain of government intervention and spending is much more severe than allowing the market to correct itself.

“Deficits really do matter,” Paul said. “When people know it’s in their best interest they will accept this. People are coming around to this. Just that we are getting a lot more support now is an indication they are coming around to this.”

In fact, Paul’s prescription goes beyond adopting a passive hands-off approach. He wants to withdraw American troops from around the globe. He would eliminate five cabinet-level departments and put the federal budget on a starvation diet — a diet he says will shrink even more rapidly as Americans realize the benefits of spending less.

And when it comes to monetary policy, he would eliminate the Federal Reserve and revert to the gold standard, in which all of the country’s currency would be backed by gold. That would prevent the government from printing enough money to fund its deficit spending on defense and “cradle-to-grave” social programs, according to Paul’s philosophy.

“The consequences are harsh by not doing it,” Paul said, countering the argument that a hands-off approach to the housing crisis in Nevada would be harsh.

Paul denied the pain of Nevada’s economic situation will be a drag on his campaign before acknowledging it’s a problem for him.

“I know we’re doing well out here,” he said. “It’s a very freedom-loving state, free-spirited.

“So if I could wave the wand and solve their housing problem a little faster, I would be a shoo-in.”

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  1. Comment removed by moderator. Personal Attack

  2. Jerry doesn't understand the "paradox of thrift" and neither does the crazy old libertarian.
    It looks like Jerry is quoting basic facts on the Keating Five...although I wonder why Jerry hasn't mentioned Silverado and Neil Bush?

  3. Ron Paul is correct...

    If the USA quit spending money, we wouldn't be broke.
    How simple is that???

    Dr. Paul wants to be the Dr. Kevorkian of the U.S. Government.

    Your "King Of Pain", Ron Paul.
    All he needs to do is convince the electorate that the government needs to be largely dismantled, and that YOU will no longer get YOURS.

    Good luck with that, Doctor.
    Your patients have no patience.

  4. Comment removed by moderator. Personal Attack

  5. If you think it's harsh to have an oppressive federal government telling you what you can and can't do, wait until you have a UN gov bearing down on you and giving your money to poor Africans. That scenario isn't a pipe dream, it will certainly come to pass in our lifetime. On our watch, we will ensure that all those who came before us, fought for this country to keep us free, and paid the ultimate price died in vain.

    Let me put this in a way that the avg liberal (being brain damaged) can understand. If you run a business that is running an unsustainable debt that you know at some point in time will cause it to go belly up, maybe not on your watch, most likely on your kids watch (they will take over the business), will you A) Do nothing and pretend everything is fine or B) Bite the bullet and suffer the pain today and for maybe years to come with the knowledge that eventually sound fiscal policies and being debt free will ensure your child will have a business to pass on to their children.

    The leaders today are selfish and know that in 20-30 years, they will be old with a foot in the grave, and that the USA of today and yesterday will cease to exist in lieu of a world gov and economy where everyone is poor and slave to the Intl bankers and Corps that will own everything and keep the wealth "in the family". All I have to say to that is "Gee, thanks pops and mom! I hope you ROT IN HELL!"

  6. By the way, I don't blame the Dems for this, the Reps are just as if not moreso guilty of selling us out to Intl interests. Why? The Reps were hijacked by jewish communists (Neocons) years ago. Google "sprintime for trotsky" if you didn't know. That explains why both parties allowed third world peasant to enter our country illegally and drive down wages. That explains why both parties make it possible for US businesses to set up shop in poor countries to take advantage of cheap labor, knowing full well the consequences back home. Both parties did nothing to fully investigate 911 and then went along with the flawed premises to wage budget busting wars that killed over 4400 of our servicemen FOR NOTHING! Our gov is f-ed up. Ron Paul is just one person, he wouldn't be able to implement even 10% of the things he wants to do to save this country.

    A heads up. By 2017, the IMF says that the dollar will only be 25% of the "reserve" currency of the world. At that time, the UN will undoubtedly go belly up. That's in 5 years. My guess is that we won't even see a 2012 election next November and that things will happen next year, most notably Germany abandoning the Euro and going back to the Mark, which will result in civil unrest when our economy goes into a depression that is inevitable. It's just a matter of time.

  7. Comment removed by moderator. Off Topic

  8. With the Republicans, it's fiscal restraint until God tasks them with being number one and guiding the world in the paths of righteousness.

    At that point in time, it's more important to obey God and spend like Hell, like they did in Iraq when fighting the heretics, then keep a campaign promise. After all, no one gets to Heaven by supporting a godless Democracy. It says so in the scriptures.

  9. teamster,

    Do you and Obama don't seem to understand why jobs are few and far between (and low paying). Illegal immigration drives down wages and steals jobs from old people and teens who can't buy a job these days. Why aren't unions complaining I wonder? Can it be because these illegals (who vote by the way with their fake papers) vote liberal and can it be they work union jobs in some instances?

    Also, jobs are outsourced because dems and reps allow intl corps to do so. Ron paul would put an end to that as well as send the illegals packing. Those 2 things alone would put Americans back to work. He would also end wars, cut aid to other countries, cut taxes so that businesses can afford to hire. Dr Paul would put everyone who wants to work and who can work back to work and he would still honor our committment to ssi for those who have paid into it their whole lives. Younsters like me however would have an option to invest most of our ssi money for ourselves or not save at all and use the money now to invest in RE or whatever, whatever we want. That makes a more sense than letting the system go bk and allowing 10s of millions to starve to death as was the case when the communists took over China.

  10. I'm Sickened by the personal attack comments. While it may be true us here in Nevada are weary about fiscal restraint, consider the alternatives.
    Apparently Americans only consider candidates supported by big money for big money policy, which have failed and continue to fail. Ron Paul for President in 2012, may be our best option, although i doubt mainstream America is ready for truth in government. Here in Nevada, at least this undecided voter, believes our government has and continues to handle OUR money and our foreign affair message irresponsibly. Give us more money so we can kill people in foreign lands policy has to stop. Our Collateral damage is creating a far more threat to us. Ron Paul for President 2012 in my opinion the only American voice out there worth listening to.