Texas Republican congressman Ron Paul pointedly refused to endorse his party's presidential contender, Mitt Romney, arguing that neither he nor President Barack Obama would make necessary cuts to public spending that would avert a fiscal catastrophe.
"Both within the establishment where they need the Federal Reserve as lender of last resort to make sure that you take all the risk in the world, " Paul said. He linked the Fed — his favorite foil — and the Washington political establishment together as part of a "one party system" that refuses to make necessary but difficult choices to cut spending. (Read more: Ron Paul Vows to Continue Campaign Against Status Quo .)
"I've been in this business a long time and believe me there is essentially no difference from one administration to another no matter what the platforms, " said Paul, a former hopeful for the GOP nomination. "The foreign policy stays the same, the monetary policy stays the same, there's no proposal for any real cuts and both parties support it."
He cast some doubt that the looming fiscal cliff would have the economic impact many market observers are warning about, adding that Congress and the White House would likely find a way to delay the inevitable cuts in spending and tax hikes.
"They're not going to allow all those terrible things to happen on January 1, but they're not going to solve the problem either, " Paul said. (Read more: .)
The congressman also took aim at one of the main targets of his ire, Fed chairman Ben Bernanke. Paul has been a relentless critic of the Fed's monetary policy.
As the central bank launches a third round of indefinite quantitative easing , or QE3, Paul renewed his charge that cheap and indefinite monetary policies would eventually wreak havoc on the U.S. economy. He predicted gold would continue to rise while the U.S. dollar would bear the brunt of ultra-loose monetary policy.
"Eternities with QEs are going to happen, " Paul said. Bernanke "will destroy the dollar if we don't come to our senses, and really cut spending and live within our means."
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