July 14, 2012, Las Vegas – Speaking Saturday at the annual Freedom Fest in Las Vegas, Libertarian presidential candidate and former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson charged that the greatest threats to freedom in the U.S. today are not foreign aggressors, but the federal government itself.
Johnson said, “We have reached a sad point in history at which
Americans’ freedom is not being threatened from outside, but rather from our own government and the politicians who run it. Yes, there are many around the world, whether they be terrorists or nations who harbor them, who would do us harm if given the opportunity, and who would love to rob us of our liberties. But with a national defense that represents almost half the entire world’s military spending, we are well-equipped to deal with those external threats.
“What we are failing to deal with is the fact that Congress and the past several Presidents have systematically done to freedom and liberty what no foreign enemy could do. If another nation robbed us of hundreds of billions of dollars of wealth, it would be an outrage we would not tolerate. Yet, we have watched helplessly as the politicians and the Federal Reserve have done precisely the same thing by racking up trillions in debt, devaluing our currency with wrong-headed monetary policies, and placed our dollars on the verge of collapse.
“If a foreign aggressor threatened to take away our rights to privacy, due process under the Constitution, or the fundamental liberties granted in the Bill of Rights, it would be an act of war. Yet, we need the government’s permission and must endure its probing to board an airplane, we can be stopped and frisked for simply walking down the street in New York, and we have government drones flying over farms in the Midwest to make sure manure is being disposed of legally.
“We can be detained indefinitely by our own government under the guise of protecting us. Our cell phones and internet can be monitored. And even our reading habits can be examined at our public libraries.
“If Iran actually acted to do those things to us, we would be launching missiles in an instant. But, in reality, Iran nor any other foreign aggressor has done anything to us – and probably can’t – to rival the loss of freedom and rights we are suffering at the hands of Washington, D.C.
“To a former Republican, the sad irony of these realities is that it is impossible to lay the blame for the destruction of our liberties on one of the two major parties more than the other. They are equally guilty, and equally willing to continue to spend, tax and legislate freedom into oblivion.”
About presidential candidate Gary Johnson: Gary Johnson, two-term governor of New Mexico from 1995-2003, has been a consistent advocate for limited, efficient government and personal liberty. Johnson switched from the Republican Party to the Libertarian Party on Dec. 28, 2011. As the Libertarian Party nominee, Johnson will appear on all 50 states' ballots. An outspoken pro-Constitution Libertarian, Johnson would end the war in Afghanistan now. He opposes the failed multi-billion dollar war on drugs and demands greater transparency at the Federal Reserve. As president, Johnson would cut federal spending by 43 percent, slash debt and make government live within its means while reducing taxes and regulation to foster real job creation and economic opportunity like he did in eight years as governor. The National Review said he was "#1" in job creation as governor. An avid skier and bicyclist, he has reached the highest peaks on four of the seven continents, including Mount Everest.