Here’s what Congressman Ron Paul said:
Statement of Congressman Ron Paul before the United States House of Representatives.
Madame Speaker, Burton Samuel Blumert passed away on Monday March
30, following a long battle with cancer. Burt was a true hero of the
freedom movement and my close friend, advisor, and business partner.
As the founder and manager of Camino Coins in Burlingame, CA, Burt
was one of the nation’s leading dealers in gold and silver coins. A
student of Ludwig von Mises and the Austrian school of economics,
Burt understood the important role precious metals played in
protecting ordinary citizens from the damage wrought by fiat money
and inflation. Thus, he regarded his work as a coin dealer not just
as a business, but as an opportunity to help people by providing
with some protection from the Federal Reserve’s inflation tax.
After I stepped down from Congress in 1984, I partnered with Burt in
the coin business, a partnership which lasted until I returned to
Congress in 1996. Our partnership was based on nothing more than our
words. As anyone who ever dealt with Burt could testify, that was
all that was needed, because Burt’s word was truly his bond. I am
unaware of anyone who dealt with Burt who questioned his integrity
or his commitment to his customers.
As well-known and respected as he was for his leadership in the coin
business, Burt was best known as a promoter of libertarian ideas.
Burt was a long time friend and patron of Murray Rothbard, one of
Mises’ top American students and a pioneer in economics, political
theory, history, and much else. Burt helped Murray establish the
Center for Libertarian Studies, and served as its president from
1975 until his death.
Burt also played a key role in the flourishing of the Ludwig von
Mises Institute, which, as its name suggests, is the leading center
for the promotion and development of Austrian economics and
libertarian political theory in the nation. Burt served as a
founding board member of the Institute and the chaired the
Institute’s board after the original chair, Mrs. Margit von Mises,
passed away in 1993. He also published The Rothbard-Rockwell Report,
a well-read libertarian newsletter written by Murray Rothbard and
Mises Institute President Lew Rockwell.
Burt played a major role in making the ideas of liberty a force on
the internet by serving as the publisher of Lewrockwell.com, as well
supporting the development of Mises.org. Burt also played an
instrumental role in the development of Antiwar.com. Burt also
served as chairman of my first run for the presidency, and important
counselor in the second.
In addition to his work with these organizations, Burt was a friend,
mentor, and patron to numerous libertarian scholars and activists.
He was incredibly generous with both his time and his resources.
Talking to Burt was always a treat, because he had one of the best
senses of humor I have ever known, and it seemed like he was always
in a good mood. Events that would send his friends into fits of
depression, rage, or both would be used by Burt as fodder for a
series of jokes and wisecracks. Even in the last days of his battle
with cancer he remained upbeat. One of Burt’s friends called him
shortly after learning about Burt’s cancer, but instead of consoling
Burt, this friend ending up having his sprits lifted by Burt’s humor.
It is somewhat of a comfort to myself, and I am sure to Burt’s other
friends, to know that he lived long enough to see so many of his
efforts bear fruit. Today, the Mises Institute teaches sound
economies and the principles of liberty to thousands of students
every year while Mises.org is one of the leading economics websites
in the world. Lewrockwell.com is one of the top providers of
political, economic, and cultural commentary on the web, while
Antiwar.com is the leading source of information for scholars,
journalists, and activists looking for material to combat the
propaganda of the war party.
As I travel across the country, I m astounded at the number of young
people I met who are interested in the cause of individual liberty,
peace, and sound money. Many of them got their introduction to these
ideas through one of the many organizations nurtured by Burt Blumert.
Madame Speaker, perhaps the highest compliment one can pay to a
departed friend is to say that they left the world better than they
found it. That is certainly true in the case of Burt Blumert. While
I am saddened that I will never again benefit from Burt’s good humor
and wise counsel, I am comforted by knowing that I was blessed by
his friendship and the thought that the vibrant and growing freedom
movement will serve as a living monument to Burt for years to come.
I therefore join friends of liberty around the world in mourning
Burt’s passing, and saluting all he accomplished during his lifetime.