The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity
Subscribe to the Institute View Us on YouTube Follow Us On Twitter Join Us on Facebook Join Us at Google Plus

Search Results

for:

Ryan McMaken

The Election Won't Change Much in DC. The Real Battle Is Now in the States.

undefined

The votes are still being counted, but one thing is already clear: very little will change in Washington after this election.

The House of Representatives will likely be controlled by Republicans, but the majority enjoyed by the GOP in the House will be small. This will provide a veto over some of the worst legislation being pushed by the Biden administration, but history has made it abundantly clear that the GOP is more than willing to compromise and “work with” Democratic administrations rather than simply kill bills.

As for the US Senate, we’re still waiting on the results in Nevada and Arizona. Georgia is headed to a runoff election. But it’s clear that the Senate will again be close to a 50–50 split. If the GOP manages to eke out a majority, that will help sink some of the worst legislation and some of the worst presidential appointees. But the direction of policy will not fundamentally change.

After all, so much of federal policy is now determined by the executive branch that moderate changes in party leadership in Congress will do very little to change the course of the nation’s administrative agencies such as the EPA, the IRS, and the FBI. These agencies have immense power over the daily lives of countless Americans, yet even sizable majorities of so-called conservatives have shown little stomach to rein in this power. Certainly, the small GOP majority now headed for the House will do little.
read on...

The 'Rules-Based International Order' Is Dead. Washington Killed It.

undefined

The lack of self-awareness among the many American officials who are striking a moralistic pose in opposition to the Russian invasion of Ukraine is striking.

For example, Foreign Policy has published a column by Col. Yevgeny Vindman, asking how the world can tolerate a country like Russia on the United Nations Security Council. His specific point was that any country that invades another country must not be allowed veto power in the United Nations. Responding to Vindman, however, Stephen Wertheim pointed out what should be obvious to everyone: that’s a “fair question” and one “that applies to 2003, too.”

In other words, the view that the current Russian invasion is somehow unique in its aggressiveness requires a complete rewriting of history and a willingness to ignore the reality of the US’s invasion of Iraq in 2003. If an aggressive power’s veto in the UN was perfectly fine in 2003, why is it suddenly not acceptable now? The reality, of course, is that the United States is powerful enough to invade whatever country it wants and still get away with it. A second-rate power like Russia can’t do the same, even when it basically mimics the acts of the United States.
read on...

We Must Now Learn the Lesson of 1914, Not the Lesson of 1938.

undefined

With proponents of military intervention and war, it's always 1938, and every attempt to substitute diplomacy for escalation and war is "appeasement." 

Last week, for example, Ukrainian legislator Lesia Vasylenko accused Western leaders of appeasement during Moscow's invasion of Ukraine, stating, "This is the same as 1938 when also the world and the United States in particular were averting their eyes from what was being done by Hitler and his Nazi Party." The week before that, Estonian legislator Marko Mihkelson declared, "I hope I’m wrong but I smell 'Munich' here. "

These, of course, are references to the notorious Munich conference of 1938, when UK prime minister Neville Chamberlain (and others) agreed to allow Adolf Hitler's Germany to annex the Sudetenland in Czechoslovakia as a means to avoid a general war in Europe. The "appeasement," of course, failed to prevent war because Hitler's regime actually planned to annex much more than that. 

Ever since, the "lesson of Munich" for advocates of military intervention is that it's always best to escalate international conflicts and meet all perceived aggressors with immediate military force rather than embrace compromise or nonintervention.
read on...

In the Age of Covid, We're Reminded an Unjust Law Is No Law at All

undefined

It has become something of a habit in both the American and Canadian media to insist that the Canadian trucker protest against vaccine mandates is an "illegal protest." They are "illegal border protests," one American news affiliate proclaims. Canada's National Post dutifully refers to the protests in its headlines as illegal acts. The term "illegal" has been used a multitude of times by Liberal Party politicians in the House of Commons. The premier of Ontario—one of Canada's most hysterical politicians—not only paints the protests as illegal but as a "siege." Other opponents of the protests refer to them as an "occupation" and as an "insurrection." 

"Lawbreaker" as a Political Slur

So why the obsession with labeling the protests illegal? The idea, of course, is to cast suspicion on them and portray them as harmful and morally illegitimate. We could contrast the rhetoric surrounding the trucker protest with that of the Black Lives Matter protests. In the case of the BLM protests, illegal acts were downplayed and ignored, with one obvious riot labeled a "mostly peaceful" protest. when it comes to protests and other acts of which the regime approves, legality is never an issue. 

The regimes of the world, of course, like to use legality as a standard for judging human behavior because the regimes make the laws. Whether or not the laws actually have anything to do with human rights, private property, or just basic common sense is another matter entirely. Thus history is replete with pointless, immoral, and destructive laws. Slavery has been lawful throughout much of human history. Temporary slavery—known as military conscription—is still employed by many regimes. In the US, the imprisonment of peaceful American citizens of Japanese descent was perfectly lawful under the US regime during World War II. Today, employers can face ruinous sanctions for hiring a worker who lacks the proper immigration paperwork.  Worldwide, people can be jailed in many jurisdictions for years for the "crime" of possessing an illegal plant.
read on...

The White House Now Says It Never Really Wanted Lockdowns

undefined

Last Friday, a reporter asked White House press secretary Jen Psaki to respond to the Johns Hopkins covid study showing lockdowns provided no real benefit in terms of disease prevention.

In response, Psaki dodged addressing the study directly, but then pivoted to claiming that the Biden administration had never pushed lockdowns. “We are not pushing lockdowns,” she insisted. “We’ve not been pro-lockdown—most of the lockdowns actually happened under the previous President.”

We have now reached the point in the media and political narrative where the party of lockdowns realizes lockdowns are increasingly unpopular and so now claims it never supported lockdowns at all.

But how can Psaki get away with saying this? We all know that Joe Biden has always supported lockdowns. Well, that's not quite it, and she's not completely wrong. By the time Biden was actually sworn in as president, he had already stopped pushing for lockdowns as a continued anticovid option.
read on...

The Experts' 'Zero Covid' Plan Was a Total Failure

undefined

The Chinese regime is doubling down in its “zero covid” strategy. In recent weeks, new covid cases have been detected in several cities. In a world of the more-contagious omicron variant, this is to be expected.

But what has been the Chinese state’s response? It’s more of the same. Lockdowns, travel suspensions, and more. NBC reports:
Tianjin, which detected China's first community spread of Omicron on Saturday, is rolling out a second round of mass testing on its 14 million residents on Wednesday. …The outbreak has already spread to Anyang, a city in Henan province some 300 miles (482 kilometers) away, prompting a full lockdown …Tianjin officials said at a news conference Tuesday that all bus services to Beijing had been suspended. … On Wednesday, 425 flights were canceled at Tianjin Binhai International Airport, accounting for 95% of all scheduled flights…Tianjin authorities on Sunday ordered citizens not to leave the city unless absolutely necessary. Those who want to leave must present a negative Covid test taken within 48 hours…
It’s hard to believe that anyone still believes that covid will go away if government authorities just “lock down harder.” But China is hardly the only example of how this delusion can win many adherents among the technocrats and the expert class.
read on...

Employer Vaccine Mandates: When the Feds Pay the Piper, they Call the Tune

undefined

Advocates for vaccine mandates—led by the Biden Administration—are apparently unconcerned that the mandates are likely to drive down total employment and reduce access to government services. In many cases these are the same services that mandate-pushing politicians have always insisted are utterly “critical” and must be expanded. Instead, the party is taking the position that the drive for vaccination must be placed before all other values in society, including public safety and employment for working class Americans.

The whole affair helps illustrate, yet again, the problem of allowing the state to have a monopoly on services like fire protection. These are services that can be (and have been) canceled or reduced for political purposes. Mandates also show the danger of governments that maintain lucrative contracts and financial ties with countless ostensibly private firms and local-government employers. This has made many private sector firms reliant on federal dollars. All combined, these factors have made it easier for governments to demand compliance with vaccine mandates. Even if the regulatory power of the federal government can be curtailed when it comes to vaccine mandates, the enormous federal financial footprint in the private sector will continue to provide a means for federal regulators to get what they want by threatening to cut off the gravy train.
read on...

Without Lockdowns, Sweden Had Fewer Excess Deaths Than Most of Europe

undefined

It’s now been more than eighteen months since governments began the new social experiment now known as “lockdowns.” Prior to 2020, forced “social distancing” was generally considered to be too costly in societal terms to justify such a risky experiment.

Yet in 2020, led by health technocrats at the World Health Organization, nearly all national governments in the world suddenly and without precedent embraced the idea of lockdowns.

On the other hand, the Swedish regime rejected the idea.

For this act of iconoclasm, the Swedish government was pilloried by media organizations and non-Swedish government officials worldwide. The predictions of doom and of a widespread Swedish bloodbath were ubiquitous. Months later, even when it became clear Sweden was not the death-addled outlier many assumed it would be, it was common to see articles declaring Swedish covid policy to be a “disaster.”
read on...


Authors

Tags