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Post details: Run, Ron, Run

Run, Ron, Run

Ron Paul's Veteran's Day rally was set in a beautiful historical district of Philadelphia. Independence Mall, the cradle of the American democracy, was a fitting backdrop for the campaign that pleads the return to its values. And seeing a white van with the Ron Paul Revolution logo on its chassis parked next to the National Constitution Center had a highly symbolic value of its own.

The fact that a crowd of several thousand gathered on a lawn in front of the Liberty Bell Center, in clear defiance of the livid skies on a cold November afternoon speaks volumes about the strength of the message being disseminated. Many times during the main speech did the forest of signs and banners spring up, but the longest ovation followed when Ron Paul suggested that the power and privilege to do good should be transferred from government to people, who can disburse it more effectively.

Example: After the Great Chicago Fire in 1971, much of the restoration effort rested upon the shoulders of the Chicago Relief and Aid Society. It is difficult to argue what would happen if the Federal Government took the charge instead, but the grim lessons of Katrina suggest that perhaps it was better that it didn't.

The point is really simple. You keep more of your money and you control where the money goes. If you want to support Darfur, for instance, you channel your money there through private charities - whether they are operated by Bono or by the Catholic Church. That way you make sure the money gets where you want it, rather than be diverted to other noble purposes, such as sending tons of weapons to Iraq (where they mysteriously disappear), designing new super stealth bombers or building bridges to nowhere in Alaska.

It is a result of human nature that any social structure that attempts to control everything gets eventually bogged down in its own administrative and bureaucratic quagmire. It grows into such complexity that its mere size prevents it from functioning properly. Pouring money into it is like pumping water into a leaky plumbing. Some will get to the final destination, but gallons will get wasted, too.

I once witnessed (and was a victim of) an attempt to control everything - it was called "communism". The party apparatchiks would tell you what to read, where to travel, which regimes to support, what to believe in and even what phrases to use in your writing (for instance the Soviet occupation of Czechoslovakia in 1968 was always to be referred to as the "brotherly help" and no other wording was permitted). For a while it worked, but at the end the system failed miserably.

Simply put, there are functions for which the government is well suited and some for which it is not. Foreign policy, fiscal and monetary issues, national defense - sure, but the rest should be decided locally - by states, by towns and by individual people.

It is good that at least one presidential candidate is aware of it.

philly

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