On Fox News today, Rep. Ron Paul had a special message for the victims of the flooding of the Mississippi River. He told them they should be building their own levees.
Here is the video:
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Here is the transcript from Fox News:
WALLACE: Question — President Paul would tell those folks, you’re on your own?
PAUL: Well, you can’t change laws overnight. The president isn’t a dictator, but you would work for certain goals. The principle of ultimate insurance by government is moral hazard because people do things they shouldn’t do.
But I have opposed, you know, flood insurance since I’ve been in Congress for 30 years, since 1976. And I have a coastal district, so I don’t support FEMA. I get a lot more complaints about FEMA than I get support.
Of course, if it’s a program — you know, there are a lot of programs I would do away with, but in the meantime, I’d work to manage them responsibly. As a matter of fact, I have introduced legislation that would make Social Security more an insurance program, make it responsible, even though those things aren’t technically proper.
So, no, FEMA is a problem. You brought up the subject, you know, of the Mississippi. FEMA is more or less in charge. But their decision now, because of government levees, because of the flood and no natural result and taking care of this flood, they have a decision to make. OK, down the Mississippi and flood this city, or down here and flood some innocent farmers.
I mean, this is the kind of dilemma that wouldn’t happen in a society that didn’t expect the government to solve our problems. But to expect the government and people who aren’t benefiting to pay for me to live on the beach and get my house blown down, that’s not morally correct and it’s not in the Constitution, if that’s what we’re supposed to be doing.
I like Ron Paul as a person, but this is just bat shit crazy. It was the last great flood of the Mississippi in 1927 that led to the creation of the federal levee system. We can’t leave natural disaster prevention and relief up to the state and local governments because we need on unified standard of protection. The Mississippi River is 2,320 miles long. If flood protection is left at the local level, it would only be a matter of time before a flood occurred that killed thousands of Americans because state and local governments do not have adequate resources to put into flood protection.
The reason why Ron Paul or a libertarian of his ilk will never be elected president is because the vast majority of Americans want the government to help protect them from natural disasters. Americans don’t mind taxes when they keep their house from floating down the river or burning down. Ron Paul lives in the land of the theoretical, but in the real world people don’t hate their government as much as Dr. Paul does.
Ron Paul wants to take America back to an era when things like floods killed thousands of people on a regular basis. You’re on your own is not a public policy, and it would not be an effective way to govern. Freedom is fantastic, but unlimited freedom is unobtainable within a community structure. We all surrender a bit of our freedoms when we choose to come together in a community. We exchange a bit of freedom for the benefits of living in a society.
Telling flood victims that they are on their own is not the American way. Ron Paul isn’t a forward thinking revolutionary. He is Herbert Hoover, and Hoover was a really lousy president.