Retiring Texan Congressman Ron Paul, libertarian bulwark and three-time presidential candidate, gave a lengthy, rambling farewell address to his colleagues on the House floor Wednesday, in which he slammed American government and politicians for failing to live up to the Founding Fathers' principles.
"Our Constitution, which was intended to limit government power and abuse, has failed," the 77-year-old Paul said. "The Founders warned that a free society depends on a virtuous and moral people. The current crisis reflects that their concerns were justified."
Ron Swanson-style, Ron Paul congratulated himself on having a relatively light hand in government during his 23 years in office: "According to conventional wisdom, my off-and-on career in Congress, from 1976 to 2012, accomplished very little. No named legislation, no named federal buildings or highways -- thank goodness." But he lambasted government for its lack of "appetite for liberty," "economic ignorance," "aggressive use of force," and for maintaining a "standing army of armed bureaucrats in the TSA, CIA, FBI, Fish and Wildlife, FEMA, IRS, Corp of Engineers, etc. numbering over 100,000. "
Paul's ended his speech with a task for the individual: "The best chance for achieving peace and prosperity, for the maximum number of people world-wide, is to pursue the cause of liberty."
His full remarks are pretty long, so if you'd like a skim-through, you can read the full transcript here.