Ron Paul Warns The Nevada Standoff Is A Symptom of Increasing Authoritarianism

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by Ron Paul via The Ron Paul Institute,

The nation’s attention has for the past few weeks been riveted by a standoff in Nevada between armed federal agents and the Bundys, a ranching family who believe the federal government is exceeding its authority by accessing “fees” against ranchers who graze cattle on government lands. Outrage over the government's use of armed agents to forcibly remove the Bundys’ cattle led many Americans to travel to Nevada to engage in non-violent civil disobedience in support of the family.

The protests seem to have worked, at least for now, as the government appears to have backed off from direct confrontation. Sadly, some elected officials have inflamed the situation by labeling the Bundys and their supporters “domestic terrorists,” thus justifying any future use of force by the government. That means there is always the possibility of another deadly Waco-style raid on the Bundys or a similar group in the future.

In a state like Nevada, where 84 percent of the land is owned by the federal government, these types of conflicts are inevitable. Government ownership of land means that land is in theory owned by everyone, but in practice owned by no one. Thus, those who use the land lack the incentives to preserve it for the long term. As a result, land-use rules are set by politicians and bureaucrats. Oftentimes, the so-called “public” land is used in ways that benefit politically-powerful special interests.

Politicians and bureaucrats can, and will, arbitrarily change the rules governing the land. In the 19th currently, some Americans moved to Nevada because the government promised them that they, and their descendants, would always be able to use the federally-owned land.  The Nevada ranchers believed they had an implied contract with the government allowing them to use the land for grazing. When government bureaucrats decided they needed to restrict grazing to protect the desert tortoise, they used force to drive most ranchers away.

By contrast, if the Nevada land in question was privately owned, the dispute over whether to allow the ranchers to continue to use the land would have likely been resolved without sending in federal armed agents to remove the Bundys’ cattle from the land. This is one more reason why the federal government should rid itself of all federal land holdings. Selling federal lands would also help reduce the federal deficit.

It is unlikely that Congress will divest the federal government’s land holdings, as most in government are more interested in increasing government power then in protecting and restoring private property rights.

A government that continually violates our rights of property and contract can fairly be descried as authoritarian. Of course, the politicians and bureaucrats take offense at this term, but how else do you describe a government that forbids Americans from grazing cattle on land they have used for over a century, from buying health insurance that does not met Obamacare’s standards, from trading with Cuba, or even from drinking raw milk! That so many in DC support the NSA spying and the TSA assaults on our privacy shows the low regard that too many in government have for our rights. 

History shows us that authoritarian systems, whether fascist, communist, or Keynesian, will inevitably fail. I believe incidents such as that in Nevada show we may be witnessing the failure of the American authoritarian warfare-welfare state -- and that of course would be good. This is why it so important that those of us who understand the freedom philosophy spread the truth about how statism caused our problems and why liberty is the only solution.

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SoberOne's picture

Ron Paul for chancellor of the universe!

European American's picture

Armed Citizens and a Fascist Police State cannot coexist.

Latina Lover's picture

After Patriot Act 1&2, NDAA, DHS and militarization of Police, this is obvious. Only the dumb, head up their ass american cannot see this trend.

FreedomGuy's picture

Armed force seems to be the universal answer to everything. Any letter you get from government throws laws and penalties in your face. You know there is a guy with a gun behind it if necessary.

The other piece of the puzzle is the infinite complexity of the law, now. Whether doing your taxes or waking up one day to find that the land your cattle graze on is now under federal jurisdiction because of a common all part of the near impossibility of complying with every law. You simply cannot get them right or even know them all. What was legal or proper one day is illegal the next. Plus, when you make an admin error on sayyyy, taxes it is not treated as an error. It is treated as fraud. That is why there area always penalties and interest attached.

IT all adds up to an authoritarian perimssion society easily abused by those in power. And it is.

un1ty's picture

Ahh, "permissive authoritarianism."


Thats a mouthful!

Anusocracy's picture

It feels good to be able to choose your slavemasters.

Of course it's Hobson's Choice.

EscapingProgress's picture

"This is one more reason why the federal government should rid itself of all federal land holdings. Selling federal lands would also help reduce the federal deficit."

Screw the federal deficit. The federal gov't should be dismantled and the debt defaulted on. A treasury bond is nothing more than a collateralized promise to steal from those who have yet to be born sometime in the future. This is a horrible investment, and there should be consequences for investing in such an immoral financial instrument (i.e. you should get nothing in return).

Federal lands should be divied up to the local populations in the form of stock. Everyone gets in equal proportion of the stock which they can then sell to whomever they wish or they can keep it (and they can buy more from those who are selling if they please). This is how land should be privatized. A simple sale or auction will result in below market sweetheart deals being given to politically well-connected shysters. Screw that.

long-shorty's picture

"This is one more reason why the federal government should rid itself of all federal land holdings."

Yosemite will be prettier after Larry Ellison buys it.


Monty Burns's picture

'The more corrupt the state, the more numerous the laws'.


Cathartes Aura's picture

Politicians and bureaucrats can, and will, arbitrarily change the rules governing the land.

Politicians can, and will, arbitrarily change the rules governing the populations as well, no?

I see you have zero mentions about your efforts to change the Constitution to remove female body sovereignty over at your lovely website link offered here.

fortunately some who pay attention are aware that your esteemed politician son Rand is still on the case, albeit with updated language from your own years long efforts.

while I realise your many followers here have no interest in full "libertarian" rights for all, merely whatever is on their own checklist - rest assured,

that those of us who understand the freedom philosophy spread the truth about how statism caused our problems and why liberty is the only solution

are not even remotely interested in allowing more statism to remove our Freedoms, and extend the "liberty" of body sovereignty to all humans, not government selected "personhoods".

we could all use a working definition of Libertarian, and "anarcho-capitalist"  together with all the other labels most loved here, with all the little caveats included. 

kridkrid's picture

abortion is such an odd topic for the average Libertarian, I think. Because there is a relatively consistent philosophy (I could, and do argue that the logical conclusion should be anarchism vs. libertarianism, but that's a different topic) most positions are fairly easy to find a consensus. Find the position that supports freedom and there is your party's position. But in the case of abortion, as cliche as this is to write, whose freedom are we considering? I don't agree with RP on this topic, but I guess I can understand his POV.

Libertarian777's picture

anarchism vs libertarianism?

clearly you have never read walter block or murray rothbard.

Rothbard was the pre-eminent 'anarchist'. (In the true sense... anarchy does not mean merely means lack of a political authority).

As to your view on abortion, Ron Paul's view's are from his personal experience of the arbitrariness of what constitutes abortion. 20 weeks and 6 days is a-ok for abortion but 21 weeks is not?

Again I think it was Walter Block who wrote about abortionism in terms of eviction theory and private property.

Theoretically if you believe in private property rights, then much like you can evict a tenant from your abode, a woman should be able to 'evict' a fetus from her womb. The distinction here is the other libertarian principle of non-violence. Can you forcibly remove a person from your property? The answer would be yes. But what if that person is incapacitated? Would you be allowed to evict them if doing so killed them?

If that is your theory then anytime someone refuses to leave my house, I am allowed to shoot them dead on the spot, even if they present no physical threat to me, since I have the right to evict them.

Ron Paul like's to err' on the side of life. And I tend to agree.

People talk about the 'woman's choice'. Well I put it to you, she had the choice when she first decided to sleep with a man (not implying the man is not responsible either, but we're talking about the woman's choice here). Are we saying that just because she changes her mind later, she can kill a life? If that's the situation, then any parent has the legal right to kill their children at any time after birth too (say a disabled child for instance). The woman's freedom is reduced (temporarily for 9 months) once she makes a decision to have sex.

If she didn't have the choice, it's rape, and most people would agree that abortion then is permissible. 

Greenskeeper_Carl's picture

i have changed my view on this subject a lot. having seen my son on an ultrasound at 13 weeks, it is most definetely a tiny person in there, not a 'fetus' or 'clump of cells'. as a libertarian, i believe all people, including unborn children, have natural rights, the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Part of that is the right not to be killed because your existence is inconvienent to the people who created you. I understand there is a grey area, such as where the pregnancy is at risk of killing the mother, etc, but that is a tiny fraction of the abortions that take place

Cathartes Aura's picture

we're talking Constitutional Amendments re: zygotes, the moment a sperm and egg unite, not ultra-sound pics.

and we're talking about zero leeway with regards a rape, incest, etc. 

can you perhaps extend your empathy to include a young female impregnated by her father/uncle/brother, who might feel quite insane at having to carry that story in her body for the better part of a year?

I'm only matching emotive tale with emotive tale - but the point is what you're making, every child a wanted child - yes?

Libertarian777's picture

are you indicating that the young female WILLINGLY slept with her father/uncle/brother?

If unwilling we are back to the 'rape' argument and termination of the pregnancy (along with where it threatens the mothers life) is a sufficient argument.

If willingly, we are back to the argument of taking responsibility for your actions. Who are you to decide to terminate a life just because it has an inconvenient story attached to it? What if the mother is a drug addict? or has a genetic defect? What if they don't have blonde hair and blue eyes?

logicalman's picture

At 13 weeks a human embryo would not survive in the outside world.

Millions of embryos don't make it.

Unfortunately, myself and my ex were forced to make a decision in this regard.

Due to my being on Methtrexate for rheumatoid arthritis and failure on the contraceptiojn front.

Metho causes terrible birth defects in very many cases. To quote the doc "any part or parts are likely to either not develop or develop wrong - you may not want to go there.

If you've never had to make the decision, you don't understand.

I have huge issues with people making decisions when they have no idea what they are talking about.



Libertarian777's picture

why do you have huge issues about this?

I am disputing the morality of terminating a fetus that is not viable, endangers the mother, was due to rape etc.

I'm talking about the 90% of cases where abortions are done for convenience.

I do not fault your decision. But your case is in the minority.

I know the statistics, 40+% of pregnancies end in miscarriages. Most without the mother even knowing.

What I have issues with is people who think abortion is birth control, under the guise of 'woman's rights'.


waterhorse's picture

"If you've never had to make the decision, you don't understand.  I have huge issues with people making decisions when they have no idea what they are talking about."


Thank you, you are absolutely correct and I have huge issues too with the authoritarian types thinking THEY should be able to dictate to an adult woman, her absolute RIGHT to control her OWN body.  Who the hell do they think they are?  If it isn't YOUR uterus personally involved, you don't get to make ANY decisions about it.

Cathartes Aura's picture

lots of assumptions that you might want to look into here, including

it's rape, and most people would agree that abortion then is permissible.

the repubs, including the Paul family lineage disagree with you here.

and this,

the man is not responsible either,

is so very true - nowhere is there any proposed Constitutional amendments or laws that even acknowledge the sacred sperm donor's role in making a baybee.

as to your "forcible eviction of a person from your property" - at what point do you begin a definition of "violence"?  every woman will occasionally spontaneously "abort" a fertilised egg without even being aware of this, in the normal course of menstruation over her lifetime.  so, oh dear, how will be make double-plus sure that her womb doesn't "abort" its mission of baby-making?  shall we chip 'er when she's young and monitor her monthly cycles just to make sure?  given the history of "government" - given the right-to-life of a zygote, sounds fucking plausible down the road. . .

yes, completely non-sensical - I agree.  but then, who'd a thunk half a century ago that men would be so very concerned with a ZYGOTE's right to existence?  particularly in the absence of wanting to support that said zygote's right to be fed, nurtured, schooled, have adequate health care, etc.??

ya can't have it both ways lads - either you want a full on nanny state cradle to grave, or you give females full body sovereignty and let them make the decision on whether they believe they can support a child in the current economic climate they exist within.

until then - donate to charity or adopt.  keep your rights separate from theirs.


boogerbently's picture

She had her "choice" and CHOSE to have unprotected sex.

All they'd need to do to send you little whiners scrambling for cover is say "In the case of rape".....

ONLY "in the case of rape", is it allowed.

Verifiable, found guilty in a court of law, sentenced by a jury of your peers, RAPE.

Otherwise, it's just murder of convenience.

And that cute little "zygote" moniker is less effective than the "parasite" label I've heard used.


Cathartes Aura's picture

tad hysterical there dude. 

and I didn't make up the word for gamete-unity, I'm just pointing to the absurdity of involving the government in female body sovereignty.

take it up with yer voting ballot, I've made my arguments.


Greenskeeper_Carl's picture

but where does govt involvement begin and end? Is the govt going to be involved in paying for these abortions for those who can't afford them? Becuase right now, the govt is VERY involved in 'female body sovereignty'. And it is taking money from people, at gunpoint, to pay for others abortions. I think that since it is not mentioned in the constitution, that means it is left up to the states. If we are going to get govt out of it, then govt needs to stop using tax dollars to pay for it

waterhorse's picture

Medicare has spent $172 million dollars on penis pumps in the last five years at $363 a pop.  I don't think government should be paying for some old goat to get a hard-on either.  However, we don't get to choose cafeteria style what gets funded.  P.S.  You might want to check out Hyde Amendment.

boogerbently's picture

You are a eunuch, my friend. 

Castrated by the very system you rail against.

"Body sovereignty" !

A victim of the public school indoctrination system.


fallout11's picture

You must be new here, or you would know by now that Cathartes is a woman.

Libertarian777's picture

Firstly, abortion due to rape is the fringe case for abortion. Don't get hung up on the 7% issue for the 93% of abortions that have nothing to do with rape, the arguments are still valid. Solve for the 93% then we can argue whether Ron Paul and the repubs agree with abortion in cases of rape (by then we'd only be arguing about a few hundred abortions a year instead of 1.5 million). From a religious point of view I don't feel it is morally right to terminate the child due to the sins of the father, ON THE OTHER HAND, it is JUSTIFIABLE, in the case of rape. (in the same way that I don't agree in killing people, but in a self defense situation shooting an intruder dead is JUSTIFIABLE, even though taking another human life is not 'moral').

Secondly, holy shit, you're like the MSM. selectively quoting to twist words.

I SAID "(not implying the man is not responsible either, but we're talking about the woman's choice here)"

in otherwords, I am saying the man IS responsible for the child as well and should take responsibility. The difference is the man is not carrying the child nor terminating it.

If a man strikes a pregnant woman who miscarries the charge is homicide. Why then is it any different for an abortion?

per wordnik vi•o•lence (v???-l?ns) ? n. Physical force exerted for the purpose of violating, damaging, or abusing: crimes of violence. n. The act or an instance of violent action or behavior.

So where in a miscarriage is a 'physical force exerted' for the 'PURPOSE' of violating, damaging or abusing? Oh wait I know, you'll twist it and say the mother's body is forcibly exerting the fetus for the purpose of violating it. 

How do I contrast this to the insertion of a metal rod or saw that dismembers a fetus or a drug that induces pre-term labor to expel the fetus? Need I even explain the obvious?

And your argument about wanting it either way is nonsensical. We don't need the state to enforce abortion or anti-abortion laws either. That's not what we're proposing. We're discussing the moral and philosophical arguments of whether abortion is moral or not. We are not saying throw the mother in jail or strap her down until she has the baby. 

Your argument is EXACTLY the same as gay people arguing for marriage equality. Completely dumb. If gay people want to get married, that is for THEM and their religion (if any) and their partner/family to decide what consitutes marriage. We are saying the STATE should not define marriage. It is no use arguing for the STATE to recognize gay marriage. The STATE should recognize NO marriages AT ALL. It has no authority to. If we agree first on what is moral, consistent and logical, then we can take the next step on how to let society handle this. People have it the wrong way around. GAY people shouldn't be petitioning for marriage equality, STRAIGHT people should be petitioning for derecognition of the state marriage license requirements.

In the same way we are not saying the STATE should enforce abortion or not. We are wanting to first agree on what is moral, consistent and logical, and then take the next step on determining how society will handle this.

boogerbently's picture

Let's allow retroactive abortion. (Hey, they STILL came from a womans body, her RIGHT, right?)

Allow it to age 30, if they are still underproducing (live at home, drug users, receiving govt assistance, uneducated.....) give mom an incentive to OFF the little usurper ! Think of the LIFETIME of nanny state $$$$ we'd save killing the younger ones.

waterhorse's picture

Funny how you whine about a "nanny" state when you advocate for patriarchal "nannies" to control/dictate a woman's right over her OWN body.

Anusocracy's picture

"But what if that person is incapacitated? Would you be allowed to evict them if doing so killed them?"

Call an ambulance for them and let them pay for needed help.

Perhaps you should try and think of a cultural basis of abortion and anti-abortion beliefs.

I'll give you a clue: a differing morality of the foragers and the townsfolk.

waterhorse's picture

Are you sure you're a "libertarian" or do you just like the "fashionable label?"  You sound more like a social conservative to me.  Goverment small enough to fit in uteri and bedrooms.

Things that go bump's picture

I side with the living as opposed to the unborn. A fetus that can't survive outside the womb is only potential, chattel at the very most, if it has any standing at all, and thus may be disposed of as the possessor sees fit. It cannot have rights of its own. The precious, wanted child seen on one ultrasound could, on another, be the death knell of all hopes and dreams and a lodestone around the neck. If you are arguing on reglious grounds that it has a soul at conception, from what I understand of such matters, that soul is quite as safe as those 10 to 20 percent of all pregnancies that end in miscarriage. The logic of your arguments is faulty and tortuous at best, and you are hardly comparing apples to apples in any case in comparing the living to the unborn. To whom does a womb belong? A society that says that one woman must carry a child is just as dangerously likely to say that another woman must be sterilized to prevent her breeding for equally good reasons, and don't think there haven't been cases of forced sterilization. Its a slippery slope, and these sorts of decisions are best left at the individual level lest you find your own precious rights infringed on at some point for the greater good of society. 

kridkrid's picture

Interesting. I've never heard the crime of eugenics, specifically forced sterilization, used as a defense of abortion rights, but you are absolutely correct. Interestingly, it's the pro-life crowd who has seemed to co-opt the horror of eugenics as a defense of their position.

Greenskeeper_Carl's picture

ya, it is typically the prolife crowd that uses that arguement. But what that guy is saying is far different. Making a woman carry a baby she created is far different than steriilizing certain women. Many of the people lionized in the planned parenthood type community have said and wrote many pro euginics type arguements. Im not a social conservative, I am an ardent athiest, I just feel like at some point, on some level, you ARE killing a living being through abortion. You can color it up to sound better all you want, but that is what you are doing. Ive always been very conflicted on this issue. On one hand, I am in favor of pretty much anything that doesnt involve the govt interfering in peoples lives. However, at some point, that child has rights. It doesnt suddenly become 'alive' when it comes thorugh the vagina. In some places, you can go get an abortion at any point in the prenancy, up to the point where the baby can survive outside of the womb. I do agree that women should have that option in cases of rape, incest, etc. The biggest problem I have with the pro choice crowd is their hypocracy about govts role in all this. They always say things like "get the govt out of my bedroom" and its 'my body, my choice' 'none of anyone elses business', etc, etc. But, it is the govts job to pay for all of it. Which means the people, many of whom object to it for various reasons, are forced to pay for these people's abortions, at gunpoint. So its not our business, but it IS our financial responsibility.

Things that go bump's picture

I refuse to be drawn into an arguement about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin or when life begins. I am simply contending that no one but the person concerned has a right to any say in a decision as intimately and fundamentally personal as this. 

Libertarian777's picture

again no where in any of my arguemnts have I said the STATE should enforce these abortions or anti-abortion laws. Everyone here so far has put their own perception of 'pro-life' 'people' into my arguments and countered that argument.

I am solely arguing the morality of abortion.

Ron Paul's first experience with abortion was (and some may say this is a fairy tale), as an intern, seeing a baby being forcibly delivered, and left to die in a pail, since it was being aborted. Shortly afterwards he saw a similarly aged baby, pre-term, being given all the help they could to save it. It is the arbitrariness of how we choose who lives and who dies that formulated his views on abortion.

I haven't found much on his past as a physician, but it's not uncommon for OB/GYNs to have to kill the fetus to save the mother. There are various instances where a fetus gets stuck (cord wrapped around the neck, various cysts or other growths on the fetus that cause them to be too large to pass vaginally), and the mother can bleed profusely. If the fetus is not dismembered and removed, the mother will die. I'm guessing, but Ron Paul likely would have had to experience this too. Yes it's 'violent', but the intent (purpose) was not to destroy, but to save a life (the mother's). As a 'pro-lifer', I just don't like how we can arbitrarily decide that a child is an inconvenience and destroy it, yet spend millions to save a single child with cancer.

I am solely asking everyone here, is it moral to destroy a fetus because it is unwanted? Is this the society we choose to build? To reduce the choice of life to whether you feel like it or not? whether its convenient or not?

I'm a realist. I know if you close all abortion clinics abortions will still continue. I'm not wanting to focus on the abortion clinic, I want to focus on:

1. why we think its ok to terminate a pregnancy and 

2. why we actually do it



Things that go bump's picture

You can argue morality all day, and morality is highly subjective in any case, but ultimately what it comes down to is who the womb belongs to and whether a woman's body belongs to her, as a man's does, or whether under certain conditions it belongs to someone or something else. That is the first principle here. 

Things that go bump's picture

I've noticed that the anti-abortion crowd tend to appeal with emotional arguments rather than logic. The argument regarding eugenics would only work for them if abortions were compelled. My cousin has two children who are mentally disabled. They were sterilized, but that decision was made by their guardians who loved them had their best interests at heart, not the state or society at large, which has no business in such personal decisions. I'm not arguing that sterilization is not sometimes appropriate, just that it is not a decision that belongs to society or the state anymore than legislating that a defective fetus should be terminated or a pregnancy must be carried to term. These decisions are personal and belong solely to the individuals concerned if we are a free people. If we are chattel, then of course our breeding is of intense interest to our masters.

Libertarian777's picture

well then we should shut down all NICU's in that case, since most fetuses that can't survive are placed in NICU's until they are strong enought to survive, following your logic.


And again, discussing the STATE enforcing abortion or not, no where have I ever stated that.

Things that go bump's picture

Ah, apples to oranges again. Those infants are at least potentially viable. 

Libertarian777's picture

No they're not. That's why they need the NICU. 

And by that logic, any fetus is 'potentially viable', given enough time.

Not comparing apples and oranges here, I'm following your logic through. Or are you saying 1 set of rules for fetuses < 20 weeks and 6 days and another set of rules for 21 weeks +?



Things that go bump's picture

Indeed, that is exactly what I do say. 

boogerbently's picture

The same could be said about all Welfare recipients.....minus the "potential" part.

A KNOWN lifetime economic drain.


Cathartes Aura's picture

appreciate you weighing in on the subject kridkrid, the anonymous downvoting is so boring.

I also happen to agree with your

Find the position that supports freedom and there is your party's position.

even though I don't vote, nor am I interested in doing so.  to be fair, some "libertarian parties" do take this stance, and did in the last electioneerings.

I am interested in provoking thought in the uni-formed minds of those who do still vote, and still hope that some will begin to wake up to the truth of controlled opposition, whether it be in the form of campaigns for votes, or in the bought 'n' paid for newsy reportage.

thanks again.

kridkrid's picture

I was glad to see you post, haven't seen you in a while, though I'm not here as often as I used to be, so it's likely on me. I'm not sure how I feel about Ron Paul on the "controlled opposition" front. I would like to think that he isn't, but people who think he is make a good case. I also don't vote and don't care to... though in a former life I did vote for RP, back in 1988 (maybe the reason I don't want to think of him as controlled opposition). Hope you're well.

Cathartes Aura's picture

I took a long break from the interwebs to focus on things more important, but admit to being drawn back in of late as monitoring the "news" can be a form of research for me. . .

as to Ron Paul, I believe he has information of value to those at a certain point in their "waking up" to the reality we exist in, but at some point folks need to take off the training wheels, and learn some critical thinking skills.  on this particular topic he's provided a strong wedge to crack the stubborn nuts wide open - particularly with his offspring. . .

wtf is it with these obvious family dynasty poli-ticks?  do voters have such limited minds that they need a BRAND NAME or they don't feel safe?? Bush, Clinton, Paul??


hope you're safe 'n' sound as well, take care.


Disenchanted's picture

@CA Would like to see you join the fun over at Cog Dis' new place Two Ice Floes.

Just the other day I was trying to remember your posting moniker and couldn't quite come up with it...anyhoo good to see you back.

Cathartes Aura's picture

thanks Disenchanted - but if I invested any more time on the 'webs I'd never get my outdoor chores done!

and given the current readings of "the world" I think I'll keep working on the growing-stuffs.

good for CogDis finding his writing floe - wouldn't mind also seeing more from Chumba, so many good hints. . .

Disenchanted's picture

I just spend more of my less time online there(TIF) than I do here.

Make sense? lol!