Taking Back America!
Almost no one has heard a peep out of Ross Perot for many, many years but USA Today just published an interview with the self made billionaire. Perot who many feel cost George Bush Sr the election and lead to the Clinton years blasts both parties saying they are not serious about dealing with the huge debt this nation faces.
He also says that America is running a risk of being 'taken over' because we are so weak financially.
1:44PM EST October 1. 2012 - PLANO, Texas -- Twenty years from the day he shook up the 1992 presidential race with warnings of economic doom, Ross Perot feels vindicated -- though he's not happy about it.
The national debt -- $4 trillion and rising when he sounded the fiscal alarm by challenging President George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton -- stands at $16 trillion. The annual deficit -- a record $290 billion then -- has topped $1 trillion four years running.
As was the case a generation ago, budget experts agree that neither major party candidate for president has a credible plan to balance the budget. President Obama wants more government spending to help create jobs. The centerpiece of Republican nominee Mitt Romney's plan is $5 trillion in tax cuts.
So when the country may be in even greater need of another Ross Perot, the 82-year-old Texas billionaire is re-emerging, ever so slightly, from self-imposed exile. With a USA TODAY interview and C-SPAN appearance -- and with an autobiography on the way -- Perot is peddling one more cure for what he calls the nation's "economic cancer."
"I didn't get done what I hoped I'd get done" in 1992, he says, seated before a Gilbert Stuart portrait of George Washington in an office teeming with artifacts and memorabilia from his personal life, private exploits and business ventures. "Whether I got elected or not, I hoped they'd all get busy and straighten it out. That hasn't happened yet, and this is my last big effort here."
In many ways, the effort itself is extraordinary. Since running twice for the presidency -- his 19% showing in 1992, despite temporarily dropping out of the race, was the strongest third-party candidacy since Theodore Roosevelt's a century ago -- Perot has gradually receded from the public square. His rare interviews have sidestepped both policy and politics.
He's still avoiding one thing: an endorsement in this year's campaign. Though members of his family have donated almost exclusively to Republicans in recent years, Perot is an equal-opportunity critic, unimpressed with both Obama and Romney when it comes to addressing the nation's red ink.
"We're on the edge of the cliff, and we have got to start fixing it now. Otherwise, we're leaving a disaster to our children's and our grandchildren's future," he says in the East Texas twang that spiced up the presidential debates 20 years ago. "Nobody that's running really talks about it, about what we have to do and why we have to do it. They would prefer not to have it discussed."
The proud founder of Electronic Data Systems and, later, Perot Systems -- businesses he sold to General Motors and Dell, respectively, en route to a $3.5 billion fortune -- doesn't mince words on other topics. He berates the nation's public schools and the teachers' unions he says put their own interests first. He blames the news media for downplaying serious issues such as the deficit and harassing people who seek political office. He says the president and members of Congress should cut their salaries until they resolve the fiscal mess they've created.
And, somewhat ominously, he warns that another country could establish supremacy over the United States if it continues to go deeper and deeper into debt.
"The last thing I ever want to see is our country taken over because we're so financially weak, we can't do anything," Perot says.
'Put a cork on the bottle'
The man who barged midstream into fellow Texan George H.W. Bush's re-election race and, many say, helped Clinton win the White House has no political fire in his belly anymore. "I'm too old to do it now," he says matter-of-factly.
Instead, he's lending his name and endorsement to the less well-known, but no less determined, pied pipers of the deficit-reduction movement -- in particular David Walker, the former U.S. comptroller general who is on a nationwide bus tour of political swing states to educate Americans about the economic and fiscal challenges.
Someone needs to stand up and lead this country before it is too late. More likely than not though some traumatic event, devastating to America will have to take place before we see such a leader.