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[Congressional Record: July 9, 2002 (House)]
[Page H4405-H4412]
From the Congressional Record Online via GPO Access []

                      HAS CAPITALISM FAILED AGAIN?

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Under the Speaker's announced policy of 
January 3, 2001, the gentleman from Texas (Mr. Paul) is recognized for 
60 minutes as the designee of the majority leader.
  Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, the question I want to address today is: Has 
capitalism failed again?
  It is now commonplace and politically correct to blame what is 
referred to as the excesses of capitalism for the economic problems 
that we face, and especially for the Wall Street fraud that dominates 
the business news. Politicians are having a field day demagoguing the 
issue while, of course, failing to address the fraud and deceit found 
in the budgetary shenanigans of the Federal Government for which they 
are directly responsible. Instead, it gives the Keynesian crowd that 

[[Page H4406]]

the show a chance to attack free markets and ignore the issue of sound 
  So once again we hear the chant: Capitalism has failed; we need more 
government controls over the entire financial markets. No one asked why 
the billions that have been spent and thousand of pages of regulations 
that have been written since the last attack on capitalism in the 1930s 
did not prevent the fraud and deception of the Enrons, the WorldComs, 
and the Global Crossings. That failure surely could not have come from 
a dearth of regulations.
  What is distinctly absent is any mention that all financial bubbles 
are saturated with excesses in hype, speculation, depth, greed, fraud, 
gross errors in investment judgment, carelessness on the part of the 
analysts and investors, huge paper profits, conviction that a new-era 
economy has arrived, and above all else, pie-in-the-sky expectations.

                              {time}  1800

  When the bubble is inflating, there are no complaints. When it 
bursts, the blame game begins. This is especially true in the age of 
victimization and is done on a grand scale. It quickly becomes a 
philosophic, partisan, class, generational and even a racial issue. 
While avoiding the real cause, all the fingerpointing makes it 
difficult to resolve the crisis and further undermines the principles 
upon which freedom and prosperity rests. Nixon was right once, when he 
declared we are all Keynesians now. All of Washington is in sync in 
declaring that too much capitalism has brought us to where we are 
today. The only decision now before the central planners in Washington 
is whose special interest will continue to benefit from the coming 
pretense at reform. The various special interests will be lobbying 
heavily, like the Wall Street investors, the corporations, the 
military-industrial complex, the banks, the workers, the unions, the 
farmers, the politicians and who knows who else, but what is not 
discussed is the actual cause and perpetration of the excesses now 
unraveling at a frantic pace. This same response occurred in the 1930s 
in the United States as our policymakers responded to very similar 
excesses that developed and collapsed in 1929. Because of the failure 
to understand the problem then, the Depression was prolonged. These 
mistakes allowed our current problems to develop to a much greater 
degree. Like the failure to come to grips with the cause of the 1980s 
bubble, Japan's economy continued to linger at no-growth and recession 
level, with their stock market at approximately one fourth of its peak 
13 years ago.
  If we are not careful, and so far we have not been, we will make the 
same errors that will prevent the correction needed before economic 
growth can be resumed.
  In the 1930s it was quite popular to condemn the greed of capitalism, 
the gold standard, lack of regulation, and no government insurance on 
bank deposits for the disaster. Businessmen became the scapegoat. 
Changes were made as a result and the welfare warfare state was 
institutionalized. Easy credit became the holy grail of monetary 
policy, especially under Alan Greenspan, the ultimate maestro.
  Today, despite the presumed protection from these Government programs 
built into the system, we find ourselves in a bigger mess than ever 
before. The bubble is bigger, the boom lasted longer, and the gold 
price has been deliberately undermined as an economic signal. Monetary 
inflation continues at a rate never seen before in a frantic effort to 
prop up stock prices and continue the housing bubble, while avoiding 
the consequences that inevitably come from easy credit.
  This is all done because we are unwilling to acknowledge that current 
policy is only setting the stage for a huge drop in the value of the 
dollar. Everyone fears it, but no one wants to deal with it. Out of 
ignorance as well as disapproval for the natural restraints placed on 
market excesses that capitalism and sound markets impose, capitalism is 
not only rejected, it is blamed for all problems we face. If this 
fallacy is not corrected and capitalism is even further undermined, the 
prosperity that the free market generates will be destroyed.
  Corruption and fraud in the accounting practices of many companies 
are coming to light. There are those who would have us believe this is 
an integral part of free market capitalism. If we did have free market 
capitalism, there would be no guarantees that some fraud would not 
occur. When it did, it would be dealt with by local law enforcement 
authorities, not by the politicians in Washington who had their chance 
to prevent such problems but choose instead to politicize the issue 
while using the opportunity to promote more Keynesian, useless 
  Capitalism should not be condemned since we have not had capitalism. 
A system of capitalism presumes sound money, not fiat money manipulated 
by a central bank. Capitalism cherishes voluntary contracts and 
interest rates that are determined by savings, not credit creation by a 
central bank. It is not capitalism when the system is plagued with 
incomprehensible rules regarding mergers, acquisitions, stock sales, 
wage controls, price controls, protectionism, corporate subsidies, 
international management of trade, complex and punishing corporate 
taxes, privileged Government contracts to the military-industrial 
complex, a foreign policy controlled by corporate interests and 
overseas investments; central mismanagement of farming, education, 
medicine, insurance, banking and welfare. This is not capitalism.
  To condemn free market capitalism because of anything going on today 
makes no sense whatsoever. There is no evidence that capitalism exists 
today. We are deeply involved in an interventionist, planned economy 
that allows major benefits to accrue to the politically connected of 
both political spectrums. One may condemn the fraud in the current 
system, but it must be called its proper name, Keynesian, inflationism, 
interventionism, and corporatism.

  What is not discussed is that the current crop of bankruptcies 
reveals that the blatant distortions and lies emanating from years of 
speculative orgy were predictable.
  First, Congress should be investigating the Federal Government's 
fraud and deception in accounting, reporting future obligations such as 
Social Security and how the monetary system destroys wealth. Those 
problems are bigger than anything in the corporate world and are the 
responsibility of the Congress. Besides, it is the standard set by the 
Government and the monetary system it operates that are the major 
contributing causes to all that is wrong on Wall Street today.
  When fraud does exist, it is a State matter, not a Federal one, and 
State authorities can enforce these laws without any help from 
  Second, we do know why financial bubbles occur and we know from 
history that they are routinely associated with speculation, excessive 
debt, wild promises, greed, lying and cheating. These problems were 
described by quite a few observers as the problems were developing in 
the 1990s, but the warnings were ignored, for one reason; everybody was 
making a killing and no one cared, and those who were reminded of 
history were reassured by the Fed chairman that, this time, a new 
economic era had arrived and not to worry. Productivity increases, it 
was said, could explain it all.
  But now we know that is just not so. Speculative bubbles and all that 
we have been witnessing are a consequence of huge amounts of easy 
credit, created out of thin air by the Federal Reserve. We have had 
essentially no savings, which is one of the most significant driving 
forces in capitalism. The illusion created by low interest rates 
perpetuates the bubble and all the bad stuff that goes along with it. 
And that is not a fault of capitalism. We are dealing with a system of 
inflationism and interventionism that always produces a bubble economy 
that must end badly.
  So far, the assessment made by the administration, the Congress, and 
the Fed bodes badly for our economic future. All they offer is more of 
the same, which cannot possibly help. All it will do is drive us closer 
to national bankruptcy, a sharply lower dollar and a lower standard of 
living for most Americans, as well as less freedoms for everyone.
  This is a bad scenario that need not happen. But preserving our 
system is impossible if the critics are allowed to blame capitalism and 
sound monetary

[[Page H4407]]

policy is rejected. More spending, more debt, more easy money, more 
distortion of interest rates, more regulations on everything, more 
foreign meddling, will soon force us to the very uncomfortable position 
of deciding the fate of our entire political system.
  If we were to choose freedom and capitalism, we would restore our 
dollar to a commodity or a gold standard. Federal spending would be 
reduced; income taxes would be lowered and taxes would be removed from 
savings, dividends and capital gains; regulations would be reduced; 
special interest subsidies would be stopped and no protectionist 
measures would be permitted; our foreign policy would change and we 
would bring our troops home.
  We cannot depend on government to restore trust to the markets. Only 
trustworthy people can do that. Actually, the lack of trust in Wall 
Street executives is healthy, because it is deserved and prompts 
caution. The same lack of trust in the politicians, the budgetary 
process, and the monetary system would serve as a healthy incentive for 
the reforms in government we need.
  Markets regulate better than governments can. Depending on government 
regulations to protect us significantly contributes to the bubble 
mentality. These moves would produce the climate for releasing the 
creative energy necessary to simply serve consumers, which is what 
capitalism is all about.
  The system that inevitably breeds corporate government cronyism that 
created our currently ongoing disaster would end. Capitalism did not 
give us this crisis of confidence now existing in the corporate world. 
The lack of free markets and sound money did. Congress does have a role 
to play, but it is not proactive. Congress' job is to get out of the 

                       Is America a Police State

  Another subject, Mr. Speaker, I want to address today, is is America 
a police state? Most Americans believe we live in dangerous times, and 
I must agree. Today I want to talk about how I see those dangers and 
what Congress ought to do about them.
  Of course, the Monday-morning quarterbacks are now explaining with 
political overtones what we should have done to prevent the 9/11 
tragedy. Unfortunately, in doing so, foreign policy changes are never 
  I have for more than 2 decades been severely critical of our post-
World War II foreign policy. I have perceived it to be not in our best 
interests and have believed that it presented a serious danger to our 
  For the record, in January of 2000 I said on this floor, ``Our 
commercial interests in foreign policy are no longer separate. As bad 
as it is that average Americans are forced to subsidize such a system, 
we additionally are placed in greater danger because of our arrogant 
policy of bombing nations that do not submit to our wishes. This 
generates hatred directed toward America and exposes us to a greater 
threat of terrorism, since this is the only vehicle our victims can use 
to retaliate against a powerful military state. The cost in terms of 
lost liberties and unnecessary exposure to terrorism is difficult to 
assess, but in time it will become apparent to all of us that foreign 
interventionism is of no benefit to American citizens. Instead, it is a 
threat to our liberties.''
  Again, let me remind you, these were statements I made on the House 
floor in January of the year 2000. Unfortunately, my greatest fears and 
warnings have been borne out.
  I believe my concerns are as relevant today as they were then. We 
should move with caution in this post-9/11 period so that we do not 
make our problems worse overseas while further undermining our 
liberties at home.
  So far, our post-9/11 policies have challenged our rule of law here 
at home and our efforts against the al Qaeda have essentially come up 
empty-handed. The best we can tell now, instead of being in one place, 
the members of the al Qaeda are scattered around the world, with more 
of them in allied Pakistan than in Afghanistan. Our efforts to find our 
enemies have put the CIA in 80 different countries. The question that 
someday we must answer is whether we can catch them faster than we 
generate them. So far, it appears we are losing.
  As evidence mounts that we have achieved little in reducing the 
terrorist threat, more diversionary tactics will be used. The big one 
will be to blame Saddam Hussein for everything and initiate a major war 
against Iraq, which will only generate even more hatred toward America 
from the Muslim world.
  But, Mr. Speaker, my subject today is to discuss whether America is a 
police state. I am sure the large majority of Americans would answer 
this in the negative. Most would associate military patrols, martial 
law and summary executions with a police state, something obviously not 
present in our everyday activities. However, those knowledgeable with 
Ruby Ridge, Mount Carmel and other such incidents may have a different 
  The principal tool for sustaining a police state, even the most 
militant, is always economic punishment, by denying such things as jobs 
or a place to live, levying fines or imprisonment. The military is more 
often only used in the transition phase to a totalitarian state. 
Maintenance for long periods is usually accomplished through economic 
controls on commercial transactions, the use of all property and 
political dissent. Peaceful control through these efforts can be 
achieved without storm troopers on our street corners. Terror or fear 
is used to achieve complacency and obedience, especially when the 
people are deluded into believing they are still a free people.

                              {time}  1815

  The changes, they are assured, will be minimal, short-lived and 
necessary, such as those that occur in times of declared war. Under 
those conditions, most citizens believe that once the war is won, the 
restrictions on their liberties will be reversed. For the most part, 
however, after a declared war is over, the return to normalcy is never 
complete. In an undeclared war, without a precise enemy and, therefore, 
no precise ending, returning to normalcy can prove illusory.
  We have just concluded a century of war, declared and undeclared, 
while at the same time responding to public outcries for more economic 
equality. The question as a result of these policies is, are we already 
living in a police state? If we are, what are we going to do about it? 
If we are not, we need to know if there is any danger that we are 
moving in that direction.
  Most police states, surprisingly, come about through the democratic 
process with majority support. During a crisis, the rights of 
individuals and the minority are more easily trampled, which is more 
likely to condition a nation to become a police state than a military 
coup. Promised benefits initially seem to exceed the cost in dollars or 
lost freedom. When the people face terrorism or great fear from 
whatever source, the tendency to demand economic and physical security 
over liberty and self-reliance proves irresistible.
  The masses are easily led to believe that security and liberty are 
mutually exclusive and demand for security far exceeds that for 
liberty. Once it is discovered that the desire for both economic and 
physical security that prompted the sacrifice of liberty which 
inevitably led to the loss of prosperity and no real safety, it is too 
late. Reversing the trend from authoritarian rule toward a freer 
society becomes very difficult, takes a long time, and entails much 
suffering. Although dissolution of the Soviet empire was relatively 
nonviolent at the end, millions suffered from police suppression and 
economic deprivation in the decades prior to 1989.
  But what about here in the United States? With respect to a police 
state, where are we and where are we going? Let me make a few 
observations. Our government already keeps close tabs on just about 
everything we do and requires official permission for nearly all of our 
activities. One might take a look at our capital for any evidence of a 
police state. We see barricades, metal detectors, police, the military 
at times, dogs, ID badges required for every move, vehicles checked at 
airports and throughout the capital. People are totally disarmed except 
for the police and the criminals but, worse yet, surveillance cameras 
in Washington are everywhere to ensure our safety. The terrorist 
attacks only provided the cover for the do-gooders who had been 
planning for a long time before last summer to monitor us for our own 
good. Cameras are used to spy on our drug habits, on our kids at 
school, on

[[Page H4408]]

subway travelers, and on visitors to every government building or park. 
There is not much evidence of an open society in Washington, D.C., yet 
most folks do not complain. Anything goes if it is for government-
provided safety and security.
  If this huge amount of information and technology is placed in the 
hands of the government to catch the bad guys, one naturally asks, what 
is the big deal? But it should be a big deal, because it eliminates the 
enjoyment of privacy that a free society holds dear. The personal 
information of law-abiding citizens can be used for reasons other than 
safety, such as political. Like gun control, people control hurts law-
abiding citizens much more than the lawbreakers. Social Security 
numbers are used to monitor our daily activities. The numbers are given 
to us at birth and then are needed when we die and for everything in 
between. This allows government record-keeping of monstrous proportions 
and accommodates the thugs who would steal others' identities for evil 
purposes. This invasion of privacy has been compounded by the 
technology now available to those in government who enjoy monitoring 
and directing the activity of others. Loss of personal privacy was a 
major problem a long time before 9-11. Centralized control and 
regulations are required in a police state.
  Community and individual State regulations are not as threatening as 
the monolith of rules and regulations written by Congress and the 
Federal bureaucracy. Law and order has been federalized in many ways, 
and we are moving inexorably in that direction.
  Almost all our economic activities depend upon receiving the proper 
permits from the Federal Government. Transactions involving guns, food, 
medicine, smoking, drinking, hiring, firing, wages, politically correct 
speech, land use, fishing, hunting, buying a house, business mergers 
and acquisitions, selling stocks and bonds, and farming all require 
approval and strict regulation from our Federal Government. If this is 
not done properly and in a timely fashion, economic penalties and even 
imprisonment are likely consequences.
  Because government pays for so much of our health care, it is 
conveniently argued that any habits or risk-taking that could harm 
one's health are the prerogative of the Federal Government and are to 
be regulated by explicit rules to keep medical care costs down. This 
same argument is used to require helmets for riding motorcycles and 
bikes. Not only do we need a license to drive, but we also need special 
belts, bags, buzzers, seats, and environmentally-dictated speed limits 
or a policeman will be pulling us over to levy a fine and he will be 
carrying a gun, of course.
  The States do exactly as they are told by the Federal Government 
because they are threatened with the loss of tax dollars being returned 
to their State, dollars that should never have been taken from them in 
the first place and sent to Washington, let alone be allowed to be used 
to extort obedience to a powerful central government. Over 80,000 
Federal bureaucrats now carry guns to make us toe the line and to 
enforce the thousands of laws and tens of thousands of regulations that 
no one can possibly understand. We do not see the guns, but we all know 
they are there, and we all know we cannot fight city hall, especially 
if it is Uncle Sam.
  All 18-year-old males must register to be ready for the next 
undeclared war. If they do not, men with guns will appear and enforce 
this congressional mandate of involuntary servitude, which was banned 
by the 13th amendment, but courts do not apply this prohibition to the 
servitude of draftees or those citizens required to follow the dictates 
of the IRS, especially the employers of the country who serve as the 
Federal Government's chief tax collectors and information-gatherers.
  Fear is the tool used to intimidate most Americans to comply to the 
Tax Code by making examples of celebrities. Leona Helmsley and Willie 
Nelson know how this process works. Economic threats against business 
establishments are notorious. Rules and regulations from the EPA, the 
ADA, the SEC, the LRB, OSHA and more terrorize business owners into 
submission, and those charged accept their own guilt until they can 
prove themselves innocent. Of course, it turns out it is much more 
practical to admit guilt and pay the fine. This serves the interests of 
the authoritarians because it firmly establishes just who is in charge.
  An information leak from a government agency like the FDA can make or 
break a company within minutes. If information is leaked, even 
inadvertently, a company can be destroyed and individuals involved in 
the revealing of government-monopolized information can be sent to 
prison. Each, though economic crimes, are serious offenses in the 
United States. Violent crimes sometimes evoke more sympathy and fewer 
penalties. Just look at the O.J. Simpson case as an example.
  Efforts to convict Bill Gates and others like him of an economic 
crime are astounding, considering his contribution to economic 
progress, while sources used to screen out terrorist elements from our 
midst are tragically useless. If business people are found guilty of 
even the suggestion of collusion in the marketplace, huge fines and 
even imprisonment are likely consequences.
  Price-fixing is impossible to achieve in a free market. Under today's 
laws, talking to or consulting with competitors can be easily construed 
as price-fixing and involve a serious crime even with proof that the 
so-called collusion never generated monopoly-controlled prices or was 
detrimental to consumers. Lawfully circumventing taxes, even sales 
taxes, can lead to serious problems if a high profile person can be 
made an example.
  One of the most onerous controls placed on American citizens is the 
control of speech through politically correct legislation. Derogatory 
remarks or off-color jokes are justification for firings, demotions, 
and destruction of political careers. The movement toward designating 
penalties based on a category to which victims belong rather than the 
nature of the crime itself has the thought police patrolling the 
airways and the byways.
  Establishing relative rights and special penalties for subjective 
motivation is a dangerous trend. All our financial activities are 
subject to legal searches without warrants and without probable cause. 
Tax collection, drug usage, and possible terrorist activities justify 
the endless accumulation of information on all Americans. Government 
control of medicine has prompted the establishment of a national 
medical data bank. For efficiency reasons, it is said, the government 
keeps our medical records for our benefit. This, of course, is done 
with vague and useless promises that this information will always 
remain confidential, just like all the FBI information in the past. 
Personal privacy, the sine qua none of liberty, no longer exists in the 
United States. Ruthless and abusive use of all of this information 
accumulated by the government is yet to come.
  The Patriot Act has given unbelievable power to listen, read, and 
monitor all of our transactions without a search warrant being issued 
after affirmation or probable cause. Sneak-and-peak and blanket 
searches are now becoming more frequent every day. What have we allowed 
to happen to the Fourth Amendment?

  It may be true that the average American does not feel intimidated by 
the encroachment of the police state. I am sure our citizens are more 
tolerant of what they see as mere nuisances because they have been 
deluded into believing all of this government supervision is necessary 
and helpful and besides, they are living quite comfortably material-
wise. However, the reaction will be different once all of this new 
legislation we are passing comes into full force and the material 
comforts that soften our concerns for government regulations are 
decreased. This attitude then will change dramatically, but the trend 
toward the authoritarian state will be difficult to reverse. What 
government gives with one hand as it attempts to provide safety and 
security, it must at the same time take away with two others. When the 
majority recognizes that the monetary costs and the results of our war 
against terrorism and personal freedoms are a lot less than promised, 
it may be too late.
  I am sure all of my concerns are unconvincing to the vast majority of 
Americans who do not only seek, but also demand, they be made safe from 
any possible attack from anybody, ever. I grant you, this is a 

[[Page H4409]]

request. The point is, though, however, there may be a much better way 
of doing it. We must remember we do not sit around and worry that some 
Canadian citizen is about to walk into New York and set off a nuclear 
weapon. We must come to understand the real reason is that there is a 
difference between the Canadians and all of our many friends and the 
Islamic radicals. Believe me, we are not the target because we are free 
and prosperous. The argument made for more government controls here at 
home and expansionism overseas to combat terrorism is simple and goes 
like this: If we are not made safe from potential terrorists, property 
and freedom have no meaning. It is argued that first we must have life 
and physical and economic security with continued abundances, and then 
we will talk about freedom.
  It reminds me of the time I was soliciting political support from a 
voter and was boldly put down. ``Ron,'' she said, ``I wish you would 
lay off this freedom stuff. It is all nonsense. We are looking for a 
representative who will know how to bring home the bacon and help our 
area, and you are not that person.'' Believe me, I understand that 
argument, it is just that I do not agree that it is what should be 
motivating us here in the Congress. That is not the way it works. 
Freedom does not preclude security. Making security the highest 
priority can deny prosperity and still fail to provide the safety we 
all want.

                              {time}  1830

  The Congress would never agree that we are a police state. Most 
Members, I am sure, would argue for the negative. But we are all 
obligated to decide in which direction we are going. If we are moving 
toward a system that enhances individual liberty and justice for all, 
my concerns about a police state should be reduced or totally ignored; 
yet if by chance we are moving toward more authoritarian control than 
is good for us in moving toward a major war in which we should have no 
part, we should not ignore the dangers.
  If current policies are permitting a serious challenge to our 
institutions that allow for our great abundance and we ignore them, we 
ignore them at great risk for future generations. That is why the post-
9-11 analysis and subsequent legislation are crucial to the survival of 
those institutions that made America great.
  We now are considering a major legislative proposal dealing with this 
dilemma, the new Department of Homeland Security; and we must decide if 
it truly serves the interests of America.
  Since the new Department is now a foregone conclusion, why should 
anyone bother to record a dissent? Because it is the responsibility of 
all of us to speak the truth to the best of our ability; and if there 
are reservations about what we are doing, we should sound an alarm and 
warn the people of what is likely to come.
  In times of crises, nearly unanimous support for government programs 
is usual, and the effects are instantaneous. Discovering the errors of 
our ways and waiting to see the unintended consequences evolve takes 
time and careful analysis. Reversing the bad effects is slow and 
tedious and fraught with danger. People would much prefer to hear 
platitudes than the pessimism of a flawed policy.
  Understanding the real reason why we were attacked is crucial to 
deriving a proper response. I know of no one who does not condemn the 
attacks of 9-11. Disagreement as to the cause and the proper course of 
action should be legitimate in a free society such as ours; if not, we 
are not a free society.
  Not only do I condemn the vicious acts of 9-11, but also out of deep 
philosophic and moral commitment I have pledged never to use any form 
of aggression to bring about social or economic changes. But I am 
deeply concerned about what has been done and what we are yet to do in 
the name of security against the threat of terrorism.
  Political propagandizing is used to get all of us to toe the line and 
be good patriots, supporting every measure suggested by the 
administration. We are told that preemptive strikes, torture, military 
tribunals, suspension of habeas corpus, executive orders to wage war, 
and sacrificing privacy with a weakened fourth amendment are the 
minimum required to save our country from a threat of terrorism. Who is 
winning this war, anyway?
  To get popular support for these serious violations of our 
traditional rule of law requires that people be kept in a state of 
fear. The episode of spreading undue concern about the possibility of a 
dirty bomb being exploded in Washington without any substantiation of 
an actual threat is a good example of excessive fear being generated by 
government officials.
  To add insult to injury, when he made this outlandish announcement, 
our Attorney General was in Moscow. Maybe if our FBI spent more time at 
home, we would get more for our money we pump into this now-discredited 
organization. Our FBI should be gathering information here at home, and 
the thousands of agents overseas should return. We do not need these 
agents competing overseas and confusing the intelligence apparatus of 
the CIA or the military.
  I am concerned that the excess fear created by the several hundreds 
of al Qaeda functionaries willing to sacrifice their lives for their 
demented goals is driving us to do to ourselves what the al Qaeda 
themselves could never do to us by force. So far, the direction is 
clear: we are legislating bigger and more intrusive government here at 
home and allowing our President to pursue much more military 
adventurism abroad. These pursuits are overwhelmingly supported by 
Members of Congress, the media, and the so-called intellectual 
community, and questioned only by a small number of civil libertarians, 
anti-imperial antiwar advocates.
  The main reason why so many usually level-headed critics of bad 
policy accept this massive increase in government power is clear. They, 
for various reasons, believe the official explanation of ``why us?'' 
The several hundreds of al Qaeda members we were told hate us because 
we are rich, free, and we enjoy materialism, and the purveyors of 
terror are jealous and envious, creating the hatred that drive their 
cause. They despise our Judeo-Christian values; and this, we are told, 
is the sole reason they are willing to die for their cause.
  For this to be believed, one must also be convinced that the 
perpetrators lied to the world about why they attacked us. The al Qaeda 
leaders say they hate us because we support Western puppet regimes in 
Arab countries for commercial reasons and against the wishes of the 
populace of those countries. This partnership allows military 
occupation, the most confrontational being in Saudi Arabia, that 
offends the sense of pride and violates their religious convictions to 
have a foreign military power on their holy land. We refuse to consider 
how we might feel if China's navy occupied the Gulf of Mexico for the 
purpose of protecting their oil, and had air bases on U.S. territory.

  We show extreme bias in support of one side in the 50-plus-year war 
going on in the Middle East. That is their explanation.
  What if the al Qaeda is telling the truth and we ignore it? If we 
believe only the official line from the administration and proceed to 
change our whole system and undermine our constitutional rights, we may 
one day wake up to find that the attacks have increased the numbers of 
those willing to commit suicide for their cause has grown, our freedoms 
have diminished, and all this has contributed to making our economic 
problems worse.
  The dollar cost of this war could turn out to be exorbitant, and the 
efficiency of our markets can become undermined by the compromises 
placed on our liberties. Sometimes it almost seems that our policies 
inadvertently are actually based on a desire to make ourselves less 
free and less prosperous, those conditions that are supposed to have 
prompted the attacks.
  I am convinced we must pay more attention to the real cause of the 
attacks of last year and challenge the explanation given us. The 
question that one day must be answered is this: What if we had never 
placed our troops in Saudi Arabia, and involved ourselves in the Middle 
East war in an even-handed fashion? Would it have been worth it if this 
would have prevented 9-11?
  If we avoid the truth, we will be far less well off than if we 
recognize that just maybe the truth lies in the statements made by the 
leaders of those who perpetuated the atrocities. If they

[[Page H4410]]

speak the truth about the real cause, changing our foreign policy from 
foreign military interventionism around the globe supporting an 
American empire would make a lot of sense. It could reduce tension, 
save money, preserve liberty, and preserve our economic system.
  This for me is not a reactive position coming out of 9-11, but 
rather, an argument I have made for decades, claiming that meddling in 
the affairs of others is dangerous to our security and actually reduces 
our ability to defend ourselves.
  This in no way precludes pursuing those directly responsible for the 
attacks and dealing with them accordingly, something that we seem to 
have not yet done. We hear more talk of starting a war in Iraq than in 
achieving victory over the international outlaws that instigated the 
attacks on 9-11.
  Rather than pursuing war against countries that were not directly 
responsible for the attacks, we should consider the judicious use of 
mark and reprisal. I am sure that a more enlightened approach to our 
foreign policy will prove elusive. Financial interests of our 
international corporations, oil companies and banks, along with the 
military-industrial complex, are sure to remain a deciding influence on 
our policies.
  Besides, even if my assessments prove to be true, any shift away from 
foreign militarism, like bringing our troops home, would now be 
construed as yielding to the terrorists. It just will not happen. This 
is a powerful point, and the concern that we might appear to be 
capitulating is legitimate. Yet, how long should we deny the truth, 
especially if this denial only makes us more vulnerable? Should we not 
demand the courage and wisdom of our leaders to do the right thing in 
spite of the political shortcomings?
  President Kennedy faced an even greater threat in October of 1962, 
and from a much more powerful force. The Soviet-Cuban terrorist threat 
with nuclear missiles only 90 miles off our shores was wisely defused 
by Kennedy's capitulating and removing missiles from Turkey on the 
Soviet border. Kennedy deserved the praise he received for the way he 
handled this nuclear standoff with the Soviets.
  This concession most likely prevented a nuclear exchange and proved 
that taking a step back from a failed policy is beneficial. Yet how one 
does so is crucial. The answer is to do it diplomatically. That is what 
diplomats are supposed to do.
  Maybe there is no real desire to remove the excuse for our worldwide 
imperialism, especially our current new expansion into central Asia, or 
the domestic violations of our civil liberties. Today's conditions may 
well be exactly what our world commercial interests want. It is now 
easy for us to go into the Philippines, Colombia, Pakistan, 
Afghanistan, or wherever, in pursuit of terrorists. No questions are 
asked by the media or the politicians, only cheers. Put in these terms, 
who can object? We all despise the tactics of the terrorists, so the 
nature of the response is not to be questioned.

  A growing number of Americans are concluding that the threat we now 
face comes more from a consequence of our foreign policy than because 
the bad guys envy our freedoms and prosperity.
  How many terrorist attacks have been directed toward Switzerland, 
Australia, Canada, or Sweden? They are also rich and free, and would be 
easy targets; but the Islamic fundamentalists see no purpose in doing 
so. There is no purpose in targeting us unless there is a political 
agenda, which there surely is. To deny that this political agenda 
exists jeopardizes the security of this country. Pretending something 
to be true that is not is dangerous.
  It is a definite benefit for so many to recognize that our $40 
billion annual investment in intelligence-gathering prior to 9-11 was a 
failure. Now, a sincere desire exists to rectify these mistakes. That 
is good, unless instead of changing the role of the CIA and the FBI all 
the past mistakes are made worse by spending more money and enlarging 
the bureaucracy to do the very same thing without improvement in their 
efficiency or a change in their goals. Unfortunately, that is what is 
likely to happen.
  One of the major shortcomings that is led to the 9-11 tragedy was the 
responsibility for protecting commercial airlines was left to the 
government: the FAA, the FBI, the CIA, and the INS. They failed. A 
greater sense of responsibility for the owners to provide security is 
what is needed. Guns in the cockpit would have most likely prevented 
most of the deaths that occurred on that fateful day.
  But what does our government do? It firmly denies airline pilots the 
right to defend their planes, and we federalize the security screeners 
and rely on F-16s to shoot down airliners if they are hijacked. 
Security screeners, many barely able to speak English, spend endless 
hours harassing pilots, confiscating dangerous mustache scissors, 
mauling grandmothers and children, and pestering Al Gore, while doing 
nothing about the influx of aliens from Middle Eastern countries who 
are on designated watch lists.
  We pump up the military from India and Pakistan, ignore all the 
warnings about Saudi Arabia, and plan a secret war against Iraq, to 
make sure no one starts asking, where is Osama bin Laden? We think we 
know where Saddam Hussein lives, so let us go get him instead.
  Since our government bureaucracy failed, why not get rid of it, 
instead of adding to it? If we had proper respect and understood how 
private property owners effectively defend themselves, we could apply 
those rules to the airlines and achieve something worthwhile.
  If our immigration policies have failed, when will we defy the 
politically correct fanatics and curtail the immigration of those 
individuals on the highly suspect list? Instead of these changes, all 
we hear is that the major solution will come by establishing a huge new 
Federal department, the Department of Homeland Security.
  According to all the pundits, we are expected to champion the big 
government approach; and if we do not jolly well like it, we will be 
tagged unpatriotic. The fear that permeates our country calls out for 
something to be done in response to almost daily warnings of the next 
attack. If it is not a real attack, then it is a theoretical one, one 
where the bomb could well be only in the minds of a potential 
  Where is all this leading us? Are we moving toward a safer and more 
secure society? I think not. All the discussions of these proposed 
plans since 9-11 have been designed to condition the American people to 
accept major changes in our political system. Some of the changes being 
made are unnecessary, and others are outright dangerous to our way of 
  There is no need for us to be forced to choose between security and 
freedom. Giving up freedom does not provide greater security; 
preserving and better understanding freedom can. Sadly, today, many are 
anxious to give up freedom in response to real and generated fears.
  The plans for a first strike supposedly against a potential foreign 
government should alarm all Americans. If we do not resist this power 
the President is assuming, our President, through executive order, can 
start a war anyplace, anytime, against anyone he chooses for any reason 
without congressional approval.
  This is a tragic usurpation of the war power by the executive branch 
from the legislative branch, with Congress being all too accommodating. 
Removing the power of the executive branch to wage war, as was done 
through our revolution and the writing of the Constitution, is now 
being casually sacrificed on the alter of security.
  In a free society, and certainly in the constitutional Republic we 
have been given, it should never be assumed that the President alone 
can take it upon himself to wage war whenever he pleases. The publicly 
announced plan to murder Saddam Hussein in the name of our national 
security draws nary a whimper from Congress. Support is overwhelming, 
without a thought as to the legality, the morality, the 
constitutionality, or its practicality.
  Murdering Saddam Hussein will surely generate many more fanatics 
ready to commit their lives to suicide attacks against us. Our CIA 
attempts to assassinate Castro backfired with the subsequent 
assassination of our President. Killing Saddam Hussein just for the 
sake of killing him obviously will increase the threat against us, not 
diminish it. It makes no sense. But our warriors argue that some day he 
may build a bomb, some day he might use

[[Page H4411]]

it, maybe against us or some unknown target.
  This policy further radicalizes the Islamic fundamentalists against 
us because, from their viewpoint, our policy is driven by Israel, not 
U.S. security interests.

                              {time}  1845

  Planned assassination, a preemptive strike policy without proof of 
any threat and a vague definition of terrorism may work for us as long 
as we are king of the hill; but one most assume every other nation will 
naturally use our definition of policy as justification for dealing 
with their neighbors. India can justify a first strike against 
Pakistan, China against India or Taiwan as other examples. This new 
policy, if carried through, will make the world a lot less safe.
  This new doctrine is based on proving a negative which is something 
impossible to do, especially when we are dealing with a subjective 
interpretation of plans buried in someone's head. To those who suggest 
a more restrained approach on Iraq and killing Saddam Hussein, the war 
hawks retort saying, Prove to me that Saddam Hussein might not do 
something some day directly harmful to the United States. Since no one 
can prove this, the war mongers shout, let us march to Bagdad.
  We can all agree that aggression should be met with force and that 
providing national security is an ominous responsibility that falls on 
the shoulders of Congress. But avoiding useless and unjustifiable wars 
that threaten our whole system of government and security seems to be 
the more prudent thing to do.
  Since September 11, Congress has responded with a massive barrage of 
legislation not seen since Roosevelt took over in 1933. Where Roosevelt 
dealt with trying to provide economic security, today's legislation 
deals with personal security from any and all imaginable threat at any 
cost, dollar or freedom loss. These include the PATRIOT Act, which 
undermines the fourth amendment with the establishment of an overly-
broad and dangerous definition of terrorism; the Financial Anti-
terrorism Act, which expands the government's surveillance of the 
financial transactions of all American citizens through the increased 
power of FinCen and puts back on track the plans to impose ``Know our 
customer'' regulations on all Americans.
  The airline bail-out bill gave $15 billion rushed through shortly 
after September 11. The federalization of all airlines security 
employees, military tribunals set up by executive orders, undermining 
the rights of those accused, rights established as far back as 1215. 
Unlimited retention of suspects without charges being made even when a 
crime has not been committed, a serious precedent that one day may well 
be abused. Relaxation of FBI surveillance guidelines of all political 
activity. Functioning of the Federal Government authority and 
essentially monopolizing vaccines and treatment for infectious 
diseases, permitting massive quarantines and mandates for vaccinations.
  Almost all significant legislation since 9-11 has been rushed through 
in a tone of urgency with reference to the tragedy including the $190 
billion farm bill. Guarantees to all insurance companies are now moving 
quickly through the Congress. Increasing the billions already flowing 
into foreign aid is now being planned as our intervention overseas 
continue to expand.
  There is no reason to believe that the massive increase in spending, 
both domestic and foreign, along with the massive expansion of the size 
of the Federal Government will slow any time soon. The deficit is 
exploding as the economy weakens. When the government sector drains the 
resources needed for capital expansion, it contributes to the loss of 
confidence needed for growth, allowing the economy to function.
  Even without evidence that any good has come from this massive 
expansion of government power, Congress is in the process of 
establishing this huge new Department of Homeland Security, hoping 
miraculously through centralization to make all of these efforts 
productive and worthwhile. There is no evidence, however, that 
government bureaucracy and huge funding can solve our Nation's problem. 
The likelihood is that the unintended consequences of this new proposal 
will be to diminish our security and do nothing to enhance our 
  Opposing currently proposed legislation and recently passed 
legislation does not mean that one is complacent about terrorism or 
homeland security. The truth is that there are alternative solutions to 
these problems we face without resorting to expanding the size and 
scope of government at the expense of liberty.
  As tempting as it may seem, a government is incapable of preventing 
crimes. On occasion with luck they might succeed. But the failure to 
tip us off about 9-11 after spending $40 billion a year on 
intelligence-gathering should surprise no one. Governments by nature 
are very inefficient institutions. We must accept that as fact.
  I am sure that our intelligence agency had the information available 
to head off 9-11, but bureaucratic blundering and turf wars prevented 
the information from being useful. But the basic principle is wrong. 
City policeman cannot and should not be expected to try to prevent 
crimes. This would invite massive intrusions into the everyday 
activities of every law-abiding citizen. But that is exactly what our 
recent legislation is doing. It is a wrongheaded approach, no matter 
how wonderful it may sound. The policemen in the inner cities patrol 
their beats, but crime is still rampant.

  In the rural areas of America, literally millions of citizens are 
safe and secure in their homes though miles from any police protection. 
They are safe because even the advantage of isolation does not entice 
the burglar to rob a house when he knows a shotgun sits inside the door 
waiting to be used. But this is a right denied many of our citizens 
living in the inner city.
  The whole idea of government preventing crime is dangerous. To 
prevent crimes in our homes or businesses, governments would need 
cameras to spy on every move to check for illegal drug use, wife-
beating, child abuse or tax evasion. They would need cameras not only 
on our streets and in our homes; but our phones, Internet, and travels 
would need to be constantly monitored just to make sure we are not a 
terrorist, drug dealer, or tax evader.
  This is the assumption used at the airports, rather than using 
privately owned airlines to profile their passengers to assure the 
safety for which airline owners ought to assume responsibility. But, of 
course, this would mean guns in the cockpit. I am certain this approach 
to safety and security would be far superior to the rules that existed 
prior to 9-11 and now have been made much worse in the past 9 months.
  This method of providing security emphasizes private property 
ownership and responsibility of the owners to protect that property, 
but the right to bear arms must be included. The fact that the 
administration is opposed to guns in the cockpits and the fact that 
airline owners are more interested in bailouts and insurance protection 
means that we are just digging a bigger hole for ourselves, ignoring 
liberty and expanding the government to provide something it is not 
capable of doing.
  Because of this, in combination with a foreign policy that generates 
more hatred towards us and multiplies the number of terrorists that 
seek vengeance, I am deeply concerned that Washington's effort so far, 
sadly, have only made us more vulnerable. I am convinced that the newly 
proposed Department of Homeland Security will do nothing to make us 
more secure, but it will make us a lot poorer and less free. If the 
trend continues, the Department of Homeland Security may well be the 
vehicle used for a much more ruthless control of the people by some 
future administration than any of us dreamed. Let us pray that this 
concern will never materialize.
  America is not now a ruthless authoritarian police state, but our 
concerns ought to be whether we have laid the foundation of a more 
docile police state. The love of liberty has been so diminished that we 
tolerate intrusions into our privacy today that would have been 
abhorred just a few years ago. Tolerance of inconvenience to our 
liberties is not uncommon when both personal and economic fears 
persist. The sacrifices being made to our liberties will surely usher 
in a system of government that will place only those who enjoy being in 
charge of running other peoples lives.

[[Page H4412]]

  What then is the answer? Is America a police state? My answer is 
maybe, not yet. But it is fast approaching. The seeds have been sown 
and many of our basic protections against tyranny have been and are 
constantly being undermined. The post-9-11 atmosphere here in Congress 
has provided ample excuse to concentrate on safety at the expense of 
liberty, failing to recognize that we cannot have one without the 
  When the government keeps detailed records on every move we make and 
we either need advanced permission for everything we do or are 
penalized for not knowing what the rules are, America will be a 
declared police state. Personal privacy for law-abiding citizens will 
be a thing of the past. Enforcement of laws against economic and 
political crimes will exceed that of violent crimes. War will be the 
prerogative of the administration. Civil liberties will be suspended 
for suspects and their prosecution will not be carried out by an 
independent judiciary. In a police state this becomes common practice 
rather than a rare incident.
  Some argue that we already live in a police state and Congress does 
not have the foggiest notion of what we are dealing with. So forget it 
and use your energies for your own survival, some advise. And they 
advise also that the momentum toward the monolithic state cannot be 
  Possibly that is true. But I am optimistic that if we do the right 
thing and do not capitulate to popular fallacies and fancies and the 
incessant war propaganda, the onslaught of statism can be reversed. To 
do so, we as a people once again have to dedicate ourselves to 
establishing the proper role a government plays in a free society. That 
does not involve the redistribution of wealth through force. It does 
not mean that government dictates to us the moral and religious 
standards of the people. It does not allow us to police the world by 
involving ourselves in every conflict as if it is our responsibility to 
manage an American world empire. But it does mean government has a 
proper role in guaranteeing free markets, protecting voluntary and 
religious choices and guaranteeing private property ownership while 
punishing those who violate these rules, whether foreign or domestic.
  In a free society, the government's job is simply to protect liberty. 
The people do the rest. Let us not give up a grand experiment that 
provided so much for so many. Let us reject the police state.