From the December 2007 Idaho Observer:
Ron Paul bears empty pot for Americans
Ron Paul bears empty pot for Americans
SMITHTOWN, N.Y.óMany contend that Ron Paul, although an honest, plain-talking man, comes to the 2008 presidential campaign podium without a lot of achievement. While in office, he hasnít steer-headed proposed legislation into law, or galvanized broad-based support for this national agenda or that, or even been on board with most post-911 bills and actions. For almost twenty years, heís been a dedicated representative for his Texas District and has not a potpourri of achievements about which to boast on the presidential campaign trail. Is this exactly true? How could someone serve for so long, and have so little to show for it?
At this time, I should share a story I heard from two entertainers at my sonís grade school. The entertainers were turning books from different parts of the world into short, little plays, in order to spark the childrenís interest in reading. The following story took place centuries ago in the Far East. The wise, old emperor was keenly aware that he was getting along in years, and he worried about finding a suitable replacement to lead the people. One day, he solicited the young people of his kingdom to gather, and he shocked them by telling them that he would be stepping down and that he would choose one of them to be his successor. "I am going to give each one of you a seed today, a very special seed. I want you to plant the seed, water it and come back here one year from today with what you have grown from the seed. I will then judge the plants that you bring, and the one I choose will be the next emperor!" One young man named Ling, a son of a farmer, was there that day, and he was certain that he could cultivate that seed better than anyone else. He got a pot, filled it with rich soil and watered it carefully. Day after day, he checked the pot. Weeks passed by, then months, and still nothing had grown. Other youths from the kingdom began to talk about their plants and flowers and trees, but Ling said nothing. He was sure that he somehow had killed the seed. After a year had passed, all the youths of the kingdom brought their plants to the emperor for inspection. Lingís first inclination was not to attend, but he showed up that day, sick to his stomach. He was amazed at the plants that the others had brought. They were of all different varieties and all so beautiful. Some of the others made fun of Lingís empty pot and others felt pity for him.
Ling stood toward the back of the crowd.
The emperor looked over the vast array and seemed pleased. Then, he spotted Ling standing at the back of the room with his empty pot, and he ordered his guards to bring the young man to the front. Ling was led grudgingly, fearful that he may be punished for his utter failure. The emperor asked his name. "My name is Ling," he replied. Now, all the youths were laughing and making fun. The emperor then announced to the crowd, "Behold your new emperor! His name is Ling!"
The emperor continued,
One year ago today, I gave everyone here a seed. I told you to take the seed, plant it, water it and bring it back to me today. But I gave you all boiled seeds which would not grow. The rest of you substituted your own seeds for the one I gave you, but Ling was the only one with the courage and honesty to bring me a pot with my seed in it. Therefore, he is the one who will be your new emperor!
Ron Paul, like Ling, is a great truth-teller. His voting record is one of the most consistent this writer has ever seen. No flip-flops are to be found. As well, he is a courageous and wise man, and a heck of an economist. Just ask the Wall Streeters. However, he bears to his fellow countrymen (and countrywomen), an empty pot. He canít claim to have brought you wars or higher taxes, which we now have. He never brought you an unbalanced budget, which is a perennial joke. He never voted himself a wage increase and, to this day, gives back part of his salary every year. He has always voted to preserve the Constitution, cut government spending, lower healthcare costs, end the war on drugs, secure our borders with immigration reform and protect our civil liberties. Sorrowfully, he was outvoted or shot down on all measures. The Constitution has been chiseled down, government spending is through the roof, healthcare costs are out of control, the war on drugs keeps getting less effective, immigration issues remain unresolved and our civil liberties have been crimped for our own safety. Iíll just throw in that Ron Paul opposes regulation of the internet, which has been a revolution in the exchange of ideas, this article being a case in point. The eye-popping reality of the situation is this. No longer can it be said that Ron Paul is running for President. Amazingly enough, his candidacy has been hijacked, and it appears now that the people are running for President. . . through Ron Paul! Thatís the true revolution about which your neighbors are speaking.
So, do you want the plants and flowers that your other government representatives have cultivated for you year after year, or do you want an open and honest effort at change, not for the powerful interests, but for you and for members of your family yet to arrive. If you want to see an unprecedented effort at change - starting with the only man on the campaign trail who is not afraid to tell you the truth - your action must start now. Get informed. Get angry. Get talking to your neighbors. Then, get to the voting booths!
The article above was originally published Dec. 6, 2007, in The Long Island News at www.NewsLI.com. The site contains a blog for this article and most comments were like oursóappreciative and so perfectly reflecting our hopes for the revolution that bring tears as the standard response.