Ron Paul presented an interesting scenario on pages 270-271 of Liberty Defined: 50 Essential Issues That Affect Our Freedom. He says that there will come a time when the states will ignore the mandates of the federal government, which will no longer have the money to “bribe and coerce” them into submission. Secessions will occur. And the American empire will collapse. According to Paul, the government will struggle to hold it together, even sacrificing welfare programs to preserve “the domestic military presence used to ‘keep the people safe’ from the dangers of anarchy” (page 271).
Ron Paul says that “It’s a shame that it could come to this”. Perhaps he hopes that there will be a softer and easier path towards less government. But I find it interesting that, although he expresses skepticism a few times in this book that liberty as he understands it will soon become a reality in the United States, he does appear to believe that less government will one day happen—-apparently after the government collapses under the weight of its debts and spending obligations.
Paul’s scenario reminds me somewhat of how prognosticators envision the U.S. eventually having a national single-payer health care system. This looks radical and unlikely, at first sight, for how could the government possibly buck the pharmaceutical and the health insurance companies? Well, according to some prognosticators, the expansion of Medicaid will move more people into a government system of health insurance, and even some businesses will dump their workers into the Medicaid system so they (the businesses) won’t have to pay for their workers’ health coverage. I’ve read liberals who hope that this will happen, and conservatives who fear and warn about this happening. In any case, what appears to be radical and unlikely can very well happen. And the same goes for Ron Paul’s conception of liberty becoming a reality. Under certain conditions, perhaps that could happen.