Markos Moulitsas is still not a libertarian

For all of you libertarians who are hearing new calls from Democrats saying that they, not the Republicans, are now the party of smaller, less intrusive government, I say to you, do not believe it.

Especially do not believe Markos Moulitsas, who, despite getting some undue attention for his fatally flawed “Libertarian Democrat” idea, is still, by his own admission, a socialist authoritarian at heart.

The Cato Institute has published an essay from Moulitsas in this month’s Cato Unbound, a monthly series of essays by invited guests on various topics. This month, the topic is, Should Libertarians Vote Democrat? I say the answer is a resounding no — unless, of course, you want to compromise your libertarian principles.

Moulitsas, in his lead essay, The Case for the Libertarian Democrat, proves that he still isn’t a libertarian, and fails to show any substantive difference between a so-called Libertarian Democrat and the garden-variety socialist authoritarian Democrat with which we’re all familiar.

The problem is that Moulitsas sees “government as a good, not an evil,” while all libertarians know that government is always an evil, most seeing it as a necessary evil which must be tightly restrained, and some seeing it as an unnecessary evil which, once humans are more civilized, we can eventually dispense with altogether.

In fact, nothing has changed since he made these same arguments back in June, and my responses still haven’t changed.

Moulitsas still cites corporate power over people as a problem, and still fails to recognize that corporations gain their undue power from government. Government is the enabler, empowering corporations to step on individuals and small businesses through both regulations and subsidies. It’s only by restraining government that corporations can be held in check, and it’s unfortuate that Moulitsas hasn’t figured this out yet.

He also says that some government programs are good things, such as “the most important ingredient of all: education, from the lowliest kindergarten to the highest post-doc program.” Those of you who have been following education closely should be quite afraid of what has happened to it under federal control. And if you aren’t, go peruse the Education category at Homeland Stupidity and you’ll quickly find out why government control of education is counterproductive at best and destructive to society at worst.

“This isn’t a question of equality, it’s one of opportunity,” he writes. “Some people will take advantage of those opportunities, and others will not. That will be up to each individual. But without opportunity, there is no freedom.” And he thinks that opportunity should be created by government, apparently not realizing that where government “creates” an opportunity for someone, it must destroy it for others. Libertarians know that everyone already has the opportunity who wants it, except those to whom it’s been foreclosed by government programs to “create opportunity,” “level the playing field” and other such blatant lies.

Finally, Moulitsas cites several Democratic campaigns where the politician in question is running on a smaller-government platform, and posing a serious threat to the Republican incumbents. This is not surprising, nor is it some indication that Democrats have suddenly become the new libertarians. What it really means is that Democrats have gotten their act together since 2004 and learned what words to say which will play well to those districts. It doesn’t mean that the Democrats, like most politicians before them in both of the parties at issue here, will actually keep any of their promises.

If you want libertarians in office, vote for libertarians, not Democrats pretending — poorly — to be libertarians.

This essay was originally posted at Homeland Stupidity.

186 Comments
  1. All you need government to do is get the hell out of my way, so I can produce something of value, and to quit destroying it from almost the moment I’ve created it.

  2. Either the LP, or more likely a new party that better fills the political vacuum left by the GOP going Christian Fascist, are going to replace them in effect, and the R’s are going to meltdown into a straight theoocratic “manifest destiny” party, finally too religious for the American Center to tolerate.

    If the LP could stop eating it’s young, and agree to organize around this definition of what a libertarian is:

    One who advocates maximizing individual rights and minimizing the role of the state.

    instead of this one:

    You are not libertarians unless and until you swear a oath to the non aggression principle, only then are you one of us.

    Some moneyed dude is going to come along, see the political space there, see the LP not filling it up fast enough, and
    Ross Perot the LP into bankruptcy. It will only take one rich person and the game is over. Someone is going to go for the vacuum that exists – it should be the LP. But it wont be with the pledge blocking the way.

  3. Those that believe that ZAP/NAP is the only measure of a libertarian can simply have a permament caucus in the LP, and use the oath for entry into that caucus. That’s the way every other party works. The party is a broad umbrella under which lie many variations of that kind of folk. They can fight for what they believe without harming the ability of a broader scope of support to the main entity.

    I dont think the LP will ever “educate” enough people about ZAP NAP to become the broader coalition required to become that party that fills the current political vacuum. someone will come along and effectively make the LP totally irrelevent, even in the freedom movement itself. One guy willing to spend about 10 million to stoke his ego would do it.

    No broad freedom coalition with everyone on board, no freedom.

  4. most libertarians are under the false impression that a “left” libertarian emphasizes civil liberties over economic liberties.

    nothing could be further from the truth…

    left libertarians don’t believe equality has to be traded off against freedom – it is a false dichotomy.

    so left libertarian are for equal freedom where the definition of property rights is based on labor whereas law-based property rights (privilege) are inherently unjust.

    just see Carl Milsted’s called “holistic politics”…

    http://holisticpolitics.org/

  5. There are cases where government action does create more freedom than what it takes away in doing so. The civil rights movement culminated in more freedom for blacks, at the expense of what some libertarians would say was freedom of association under Jim Crow, and laws did what 100+ years of non-interference in “states rights” failed to do – finally make blacks full citizens as opposed to a seperate and unequal nation.

    My father went to college on the GI Bill becuase he fought in both WW2 and Korea. Were it not for the GI Bill, he would have not been able to go to collage and obtain a MBA from the University of Alabama, which in turn qualified him for a job that paid 3 to 4X what he would have made upon his release otherwise. The effect of this times millions of veterans like him made the rise in living standards in post ww2 America possible.

    Simply put: Not every government action is anti freedom when measured in total effect across the entire society.

  6. There may be a few individual Democrats who fit Tim West’s definition of a libertarian, but looking at Markos long list of government program infatuations he is clearly not one. I think overall some here are discounting the value of Republicans like Ron Paul, Dana Rohrabacher and Bob Barr, but that’s not as important as understanding the real threat of real socialists like Kos and his ilk.

  7. I guess my point is that to acknowledge that demonstrated success of government actions that have promoted increased living standards or other criteria is not tolerated by libertarians simply becuase it violates the central tenet that
    the State is evil and must be crushed.

    To admit that some things government has done, like the GI Bill or the Interstate Highway System, has actually effectively increased liberty for americans on the balance more than the taxes they consumed.

    I’m quite sure that the economic benefits of the IHS or the GI Bill more than outstripped the taxation required to enact those policies, by huge amounts. They were, in fact liberty and economic positives on the whole.

    of course, no libertarian can admit this and live. I’m sure
    the posse is forming now. :D

  8. I don’t agree with Markos by the way. His list is way too long. I also need to say that I think that most of the things that can be demonstrated as having raised living standards or increased actual liberty in practice were done in spite of the natural tendency of government, which does indeed turn the other way most of the time, against liberty.

    I am trying to rise the issue that when libertarians deny recorded history despite pretty damn near ironclad evidence, that there have been instances in history where government action worked in a positive manner, and there are such times, that not acknowledging same destroys credibility.

  9. Again, name a single ex-Libertarian Party member or current LP member who has been elected to the US Congress or a State Legislature anywheres in the United States in the past 30 years under the Democrat line?

    I can name one: Steven Villaincourt to the New Hampshire Legislature, in a fluke. (Villaincourt first lost the Dem primary in a crowded field in Manchester, than kept his name on as a Libertarian and won. He served for 1 year as a “Libertarian-Democrat”. Funny thing is he then promptly switched to Republican.)

    Besides Villaincourt is there any other single Libertarian Democrat holding public office in the US?

    How many libertarians hold office as Republicans, currently?

    Answer: 30 state legislators and 5 to 6 congressmen.

    The List includes, former Libertarian Presidential candidate Ron Paul, and libertarian movement Founder Dana Rohrabacher and Goldwater Institute President Jeff Flake for Congress. Plus scores of state legislators.

  10. Eric,

    unfortunately, the head honcho of your party has done so many unconstitutional actions, including making torture an offical US policy, that the US has lost any moral standard in the world to claim it’s superiority in liberty, freedom, or anything else.

    We are fast becoming what we have always denounced in other nations – more like them, and less like America. We become what we profess to fight against.

    Torture, rendition, by any other name under any circumstance, is un-american. We are no better than the terrorists we claim to fight. Anyone who
    advocates it as offical policy of the Un-tied States is not
    fighting terrorism, they are destroying America.

  11. Nigel another would be Butch Otter of Idaho.
    Nice write up on him in the recent copy of Reason
    and he is running for Governor and most likely will
    win and he has strong Libertarian leanings.
    I have met him and spoken with him and he is not
    perfect, but among the best. He’ll do what he can
    for the cause.
    M.H.W.

  12. “and still fails to recognize that corporations gain their undue power from government”

    No, they don’t. It’s more basic from that. The more money a person or entity has, the more power they have, whatever sort of framework of government/non-government you use. Currently, it’s easiest to use that power through government, but if government did not exist, that power would find another way to be exercised.

    There is a point–probably not objectively definable–where, simply put, having a certain amount of money gives a person too much power over their fellow humans. At the smaller levels, this is containable because of competition. But there are levels where competition will only be theoretical, and that’s when the danger to liberty comes in.

    Libertarianism has yet to face this dilemma–that to make property rights unlimited, they must be limited–much less find a solution–a systematic way to short circuit the aggregation of economic power.

  13. Mr West writes:

    “If the LP could stop eating it’s young, and agree to organize around this definition of what a libertarian is:

    One who advocates maximizing individual rights and minimizing the role of the state.”

    Yeah, Tim, if only everyone thought just like you, the world would be a perfect place. By the way, the LP has already eaten it’s young.

    The LP could have been a contender, but that nasty pledge prevents millions of people from donating to LP candidates and voting for them. What a marvelous fantasy. The stuff of tin foil hats and magic amulets.

    Not to mention that crazy adherence to principles – like being against great government programs that benefit…well, that benefit those who benefit.

  14. Who is to say that a returning GI wouldn’t have gotten a degree without the GI Bill? Many people got degrees who weren’t veterans. After all, college tutition was fairly affordable in the fifties.

    Who benefited from the GI Bill? GI’s, of course. As with all subsidies, the cost of the subsidized item tends to increase as demand is increased by the subsidy. Did other students who paid more for their education benefit by the GI Bill?

    Did the taxpayer benefit by the GI Bill? How many students faced with increased tuitions and increased taxes were unable to afford college? They certainly didn’t benefit.

    What would have happened without the GI Bill? Would states or colleges have provided reduced tuition or low interest loans to returning GI’s? We don’t the answer because the federal government picked up the tab (on the taxpayer’s dime).

  15. Wait, the Butch Otter that recently voted for the Military Commission Act?

    That voted for the Real ID Act? To intervene in the Schiavo case? That voted for the anti-gay marriage amendment?

    Look, I think Butch is a great Congressman, an appealing candidate for libertarians to support, and soon to be a great Governor of Idaho. But his appeal to libertarians doesn’t come from being a purist libertarian. He just knows how to reach out to us and occasionally vote with us. I don’t think Markos has fully worked out how best to appeal to libertarians, but in time I think he’ll work out a way for Democrats to also reach out to libertarians in a way that parallels that of Butch Otter and others.

  16. Who is to say that a returning GI wouldn’t have gotten a degree without the GI Bill?

    My dad, and millions more like him. They directly benefited and so did all of their families, and there’s no way he could have paid for a 4 year degree from the University of Alabama otherwise. He has told me many times that the majority of students in the 4 years he was there could not have paid for it otherwise.

    This did have a positive effect on living standards later on, when poeple like my dad got much higher paying jobs as a result of having that degree. I am not saying there was no negative effect, I am saying that the overall effect was towards more education, bringing with it more personal and economic freedom for people like my father.

    It’s doubtful that colleges would have offered reduced tuition during that time otherwise, becuase the flood of vets would have made it a “sellers market” where students vastly outstripped schools. The price should have therefore gone up.

  17. The problem I think is that once again the politicians saw that what worked for the GI’s, would work for non gi’s without sharing any those circumstances with them. They then expanded those programs into the general population at large, like government is wont to do. The effects of expanding those programs into the general student population did indeed make tuition go up, but that was not a cause of the GI Bill proper. It was the expansion of it onto civilians.

    Did the rapid rise in personal incomes afterward make up and exceed the cost in tuitions that started in the middle 50’s? I’d think yes, but I’m not writing a thesis. Typing is hard enough as it is, and I dont get paid for this.

    To pretend that there is NEVER a example of government spending action that has not been a net positive for liberty, as broadly defined, is to deny reality. Sometimes, (rarely) it happens.

  18. The whole GI thing..hmmm. To start with it is a moral action. A standing army is part of a libertarin society (well, at least to many libertarins), it is one of the few ethical things a government cad do. So, a government has to be competive (in this case) with the private sector. They are free to offer benefits, i have always thought soliders got a little screwed on pay. The GI bil is part of this competivness. I am a junior at KU, and have attneded a jr collage, and at both places I knew lots of 18-24yr olds who could only pay for school because of thier service/GI bill.

    However, in most cases (not this one) even if thier is a beneift from the government spending the money (which rarely occurs) it does not make it right. Yes this is cliche, but true, the ends don’t justify the means. Using violnce to take money from one group to give to another is wrong.

  19. well, ok, violnce is always wrong, even for the GI bill. But in a violuntary taxed society funding a GI type bill is ethical. So it is not the bill itself that is bad, nor the gaol of it

  20. What the GI Bill was meant to do was prevent having a repeat of the Bonus March of 1932, where starving WW1 vets were gassed and attacked with tanks in Washington DC becuase they had the gall to demand a bonus they were promised in 1945 early, becuase they were eating boots and shoe leather to survive. History showed that mass demobilizations of troops into a economic depression did not work. They decided not to repeat the disaster of the WW1 bonus army.

    http://www.rpadden.com/bonus/bonusarmy.htm

    The GI Bill directly led to the creation of the american middle class. There was no large middle class to speak of before WW2. You were either rich or poor, with very few in between.

    OK, I’m done for the night. have to go to PA in the morning. Been fun, Tom.

  21. Did the taxpayer benefit by the GI Bill? How many students faced with increased tuitions and increased taxes were unable to afford college? They certainly didn’t benefit.

    Hey now, that’s not a government program. It’s part of a compensation package for a very dangerous job. The GI Bill is perfectly acceptable to this libertarian.

  22. Kos is just a Democratic party sycophant. I don’t think he really, fundamentally has a core – except for the Democratic party. Much like most Republicans, really. No matter how many times I argue with myself, I keep coming to the conclusion that liberals and conservatives are the same damned thing and so are their parties.

    Kos’s insistence upon being Libertarianeque and that the Democrats deserve the Libertarian vote is not only outright nonsense, but insulting. He just wants to get our votes to be for Democrats so that they will win in these increasingly narrow electoral cycles we have been in lately – in particular when everyone is fed up with the Republicans.

    Instead of resorting to nonsense, lies and insulting commentary, Kos should just tell it like it is: Voting for Congressional Democrats in the absense of Libertarians might help divide the government and impeach Bush and perhaps purge some overly and overtly corrupt individuals.

  23. Voting for Republicans is just going to get you used without the courtesy of a reach-around. What an utterly foolish and pathetic thing to do. Why would you incentivize a Republican to screw you??? That’s all voting for them amounts to. In particular when they are the party in power.

    If you absolutely must vote for a Congressional candidate in absense of a Libertarian, make it for the Democrat. I’ll probably ignore them anyway.

  24. GI bill is compensation for dangerous (conscripted) job. Yes. But no draft, no army, no war, no GI Bill.

    The author of this blog entry misses the point. Yes, Democrats are less offensive than Republicans… But that isn’t the issue. The issue is that historically, Democratic control of the House has yielded smaller, less intrusive government. This is not an opinion, but fact. It is also common sense. A divided government is preferable to a unitarian one. Republicans only remember that they’re the party of “small government” when they’re in the minority, i.e. 1994.

    But then again, we have to face the real fact that the majority of self-identified libertarians are actually right-wing fascists. The blogosphere may be more evenly split, but the average LP member is a knuckle-dragging, cop worshipping thinly vieled white supremacist militiaman. Sorry if the truth offends.

  25. Interstate highway system = bad. It crushed free market mass transit. The highway system can be blamed for Islamofascism and global warming. Classic case of good intention, bad result.

  26. The blogosphere may be more evenly split, but the average LP member is a knuckle-dragging, cop worshipping thinly vieled white supremacist militiaman. Sorry if the truth offends.

    LOL

    Dude, just get a blog. I’ll probably link you up every other day just for being unintentionally funny. :D

  27. “Libertarian Democrat” is not a “fatally flawed” idea — it’s a great idea. If Democrats ran on a platform of cutting government spending by 10%, they would run the Republicans out of Washington. They’re already better on civil liberties, the war, and corruption.

    Think it’s too much to ask? They could cut the budget by 40% and still have more to spend than big-spending Democrat Bill Clinton did.

    Too bad they will have to give up their dreams of socialized national health care to do it.

  28. The more money a person or entity has, the more power they have, whatever sort of framework of government/non-government you use.

    Oh, really? Tell us, in terms of power, what does wealth buy you in a state of anarchy?

    The money would not matter if not for politics. Without political power, money is just paper you trade for shiny stuff, the leaders of the corporate world get their power from being able to USE that money to build artificial barriers to challenging them.

  29. Besides, corporate status as we currently know it is a creation of government. The seeds of it were around before (of course), but the key was when the Supreme Court decided on a whim that the 14th amendment applied to corporations — effectively declaring “yes, there is such thing as group rights”. Rights are solely an individual concept, as a group cannot be said to have inherent responsibility or a singular will.

    This is not to down business itself, no, just the idea that a cobbling together of people being seen by the law as a “Meta-human” isn’t in itself a regulation.

  30. Speaking of Markos Moulitsas – where is the libertarian answer to DailyKos – LibertyMix.com?

  31. I agree that Republicans Ron Paul, Dana Rohrabacher, and Jeff Flake are all libertarians. I might even put Butch Otter in that group, but it would be a stretch. (Btw, note that Jeff Flake was one of two Congressmen and the only Republican to vote against banning Internet gambling a week ago.)

    However, there have been libertarian Democrats elected to high office in the past. Look at Tim Penny from Minnesota. He was a Congressman from 1982 to 1994. He also worked for the Cato Institute. Governor Ventura was so impressed with him that he recruited him as his successor in the 2002 race.

    http://www.cato.org/pubs/policy_report/pr-ma-tp.html

    http://news.minnesota.publicradio.org/features/200209/12_khoom_pennyprofile/index.shtml

    Interestingly enough, Markos blasted Penny for causing the Democrat to lose in Minnesota. He also likes to blast the Greens for the same thing. Markos delusionally thinks Democrat candidates are entitled to votes of anyone who doesn’t like the Republicans.

  32. The Libertarian Response to Daily Kos — I am not faulting Hammer of Truth, but the data structure is totally different — is http://LibertyForAmerica.NET and we have been up and running for several months now.

    You can wait for libertymix , or you can take the site that already exists.

    Yes, my campaign did invest in building the party by buying ads for that site. That’s why it’s there; we put money into it.

    George Phillies
    http://phillies2008.org

  33. I would agree that in the context of recent history, the Democrats have actually grown government less than Republicans. Looking at the record, Democratic presidents like Carter and Clinton were far more fiscally responsible than any of the recent Republican presidents (and more socially tolerant). As I have said the other day in a different post about the left-libertarian connections, I also agree that us Libertarians have more in common with the Democrats – we tend to share their values, if not their solutions. I have more success targeting the Left with libertarianism than the Right. If I were to ever join one of the major parties (which I doubt I would), it would be the Democrats. Instead, I’d rather steal their thunder by making a more progressive, anti-authoritarian, anti-corporate/pro-small business, pro-environment small government party and actually attain the values they claim to have by proposing the decentralization of government and corporate power.

  34. Slack? If a tongue-in-cheek comment like that isn’t cutting them enough slack…They collected over $12,000 6 months ago and haven’t so much as updated any of the people who sent money since June. I think that limiting things to the occasional question or relatively benign comment is plenty of slack…

  35. b-psycho; your comment regarding fiscal power in an anarchy state is just plain childish.

    What does it buy you if you’ve got 10% of the GNP in an anarchy-state? Anything you damned well want. Including the small intestines of unborn 8-month-old fetuses.

    All you have to do is throw enough money at it.

    The *ONE* thing that government has as a source of centralized power that makes it a worthwhile endeavor at all is that it has the capacity to act as a governor upon the power-abuses of other entities (and *should* be used to do the same unto itself; but that takes private citizens being “eternally vigilant.”)

  36. Oh; and traditionally speaking the highest proportionality of wealth anywhere in the world has been 10% of the population with 90% of the nation’s wealth.

    In the U.S that is more like 1/10th of 1% with 90% of the nation’s wealth.

  37. It’s going to take more than eternal vigilance. Power must be broken down to the smallest levels possible otherwise it is INHERENTLY unjust & unrepresentative, as anything beyond a strictly local scale quickly becomes so complex the only people that can keep up are those with incentive to cheat the system for their own benefit. What you choose to call that end result isn’t my concern, but that’s where we must go in the long run.

  38. b-psycho — that can only function successfully in a pacifistic non-technological agrarian society, which *cannot* survive indefinitely. It is quite literally suicide. Besides; it’s no more stable than the limited-government model. Further — just how precisely do you expect to break up the accumulation of power, without something more powerful?

    Come up with realistic answers rather than mere ideological rhetoric and I’ll sit at your feet. Otherwise… I deal in realities :).

    Please also note that when I speak of the function of government, I do NOT refer to what we have today, but rather something more resembling legitimacy.

    End, and Out.

  39. Re: #34, #38,

    I’ve tried to get involved in promoting LfA.net, but there doesn’t appear to be enough of a community or enough of a felt demand to support it. In other words, I get the sense that George, Jake Porter and I are the only ones who really see this need.

    Now, having just heard about libertymix from this thread, I find that there are others who see this need, but they’re “coiling for strike, standby [sic.]” I’ll support whatever has the greatest chance of building an activist community, but without enough of a critical mass it really seems like we’re going for multiple dead sites instead of one vibrant one.

  40. EOC, I think it’s important for people to recognize one very critical point when comparing the power of corporations and that of government. Ultimately, all the power is held in the hands of government; corporations and their lobbyists (and any other lobbyists, for that matter) can only appeal to them (i.e. bribery) to do their bidding. If those who hold power in government were unfailingly faithful to their sworn Constitutional duties, lobbying would disappear as it would be pointless. If the corporations were really the ones with the power, the government would be bribing them, not the other way around.

  41. Chuck Moutlon is half-right.

    Chuck, Tim Penny was very good, I agree. But even so, he was nowheres near a Ron Paul, Dana Rohrabacher or Jeff Flake. Penny was about a 70% libertarian, whereas Flake, Paul and Rohrabacher are 95 to 98% libertarian.

    Plus Penny is ancient history. Dude, we’re talking 15 years since he’s been in Congress.

    And he finally turned Independent leaving the Dems.

    No, the ONLY true “Libertarian Democrat” in history was Steven Villaincourt, elected in a fluke in 1998 as a Democrat on the Libertarian ticket to the NH House. Funny thing is, Steve is now a Republican.

    In other words, there is no species called a libertarian Democrat. Does not exist.

  42. Again, all you advocates of a “libertarian Democrat” strategy, PLEASE, I’m begging you.

    Answer the question.

    PLEASE NAME ONE SINGLE EX-LIBERTARIAN PARTY MEMBER WHO HAS BEEN ELECTED TO CONGRESS OR A STATE LEGISLATURE AS A LIBERTARIAN DEMOCRAT???!!!

    We have a record number of Libertarian Republicans running for public offices all over the Nation this year, INCLUDING 5 LIBERTARIAN PARTY MEMBERS WHO JUST WON THE GOP NOMINATION FOR VERMONT STATE HOUSE, who have an excellent shot of winning.

    And Don Gorman, Libertarian Hero, is running on the GOP ticket for State House in New Hampshire, and will most likely win.

    Does that not matter to any of you all?

  43. Washington State Representative Toby Nixon, a 20 year Libertarian Party member turned Republican is getting creamed by his Democrat opponent for his recent vote against regulation of a bi-product of meth-amphetimine. The Dems in WA are savaging him as “soft on drugs.”

    Why aren’t Libertarians coming to Toby’s defense??

    What do all these so called “libertarian Democrats” have to say about a Republican boldly standing up against the Drug War and then getting hammered by Democrats for doing so?

  44. Maine State Representative Ken Lindell, a recent elected member of the Libertarian National Committee, now a Republican, is getting savaged by the Maine Democrat Party for his libertarian stances. They are sending out vicious mailings, knocking on doors in his district, and doing phone banks accusing Lindell of being a “limited government extremist.”

    Why aren’t Libertarian Party members coming to Ken’s defense?

    What do all those advocates of a “libertarian Democrat” strategy have to say about Ken getting hammered by Democrats for his libertarian stances?

  45. the Liberal Democrats have just managed to get libertarian petitions for Property Rights and Spending Limits thrown off the ballots in Nevada, Oklahoma, Montana, and Missouri. They are now trying to get them thrown off in Oregon.

    Even more, they are viciously attacking former Libertarian Party heros Howie Rich and fmr. LP Vice-Presidential candidate David Koch in DailyKos, Huffington Post and all over leftwing newspapers for funding the efforts.

    This in addition to the liberals attacking libertarian petitioners nationwide, blocking them and harrassing them to keep them from gathering signatures for these initiatives.

    Where are all those so-called “libertarian Democrats” in this fight? Why aren’t they standing up to defend libertarian petitioners, Howie Rich, David Koch, Paul Jacob and others with Americans for Limited Government who supported these efforts?

    Why the silence from so-called “libertarian Democrats”?

  46. Does that not matter to any of you all?

    As long as the national leadership of the GOP is such a disaster, no.

    Well, to be fair and precise, it matters a teensy weensy little bit in that it’s nice to know there’s an underground movement to reclaim their party at the grass roots. But I can’t fully respect anyone who doesn’t respect himself enough to drop the Scarlet “R”.

  47. Eric, go away. Unless you have seen the light and are willing to forswear the devil (Bush) and all his works?

    Until then, you don’t have the credibiity and intellecutal integrity to make you anything more than a GOP hack.

  48. b-psycho: there will always be politics, even in an anarchy. There will always be money, because money is the easiest measure of economic power. Who controls money has power, whether in an anarchy or not. And even in your local anarchy, there will always be government–it will be informal and localized, but still government.

    You need to think a bit more deeply, and pursue your ideas to their roots. Then you will understand the truth of what I say.

  49. Howard Dean was far more libertarian than any of the assholes running the Republican Party, Eric. While more individual libertarians might have been elected as Republicans, a side-by-side comparison would indicate the Democrats grow government less than Republicans, are more fiscally responsible than Republicans (if not fiscally conservative, per se), and are less likely to make me want to crap down their throat, although I usually do want to slap them until they start to see their own flawed logic. The libertarian movement has always more closely aligned itself with the Right than the Left, and I think that was a huge mistake. It’s fairly easy to teach socialists economics as long as you create a market model more progressive and less authoritarian than theirs – but it is very difficult to teach militant Christian fascists to be openminded. So, sorry. The RLC wins points, but the Republican Party itself gets an F where the Dems get a D- (maybe because they’re not in power).

  50. Are you insane? Howard Dean was/is a Stalinist Communist.

    So he made a couple nice comments about gun rights once or twice in the South on a campaign swing. That qualifies his for “much more libertarian…”

    I’m really starting to question your knowledge of what libertarians stand for. To call Howard Dean who is by all definitions Satan as far as libertarians are concerned – a man who falls way within the Authoritarian part of the Worlds Smallest Political Quiz – is absolutely assinine.

    What’s your libertarian credentials? When did you join our movement? Are you just some sort of Democrat shill sent here to get Libertarians to vote D in November?

    Howard Dean “way more libertarian….”

    Gimmee a break!!!!

  51. You guys are such hypocrites. You begrudgingly acknowledge that the “RLC wins points.” Then you turn around and say the Republican Party itself “sucks.”

    Hey, who do you think it is that’s giving us that libertarian information table booth space at their State and National Conventions?

    You should ask Sharon Harris, President of the Advocates for Self-Government if she thinks us RLC guys having booth space at GOP events hurts or helps the movement?

    Sharon has featured RLC “World’s Smallest Political Quiz” booths at Republican events in the Advocates newsletter and web site numerous times.

    You know how many people attend, for instance, the Texas GOP Convention? Upwards of 20,000!! Everyone of them has to pass by the booth area to get to the convention floor.

    The Texas GOP used to put us way in the back in a lonely corner. Last two conventions THEY GAVE US THE PRIME LOCATION RIGHT NEAR THE CONVENTION FLOOR!!! RLCers gave the Quiz to tens of thousands.

  52. Hey Nick, when’s the last time a Democrat President ever gave us a tax cut?

    Answer: Kennedy, 50 years ago.

    When’s the last time a Republican gave us a tax cut?

    Answer: George W. Bush, 5 years ago.

    Nick, don’t know if you play the market at all, but for those of us who do we noticed that just yesterday:

    THE STOCK MARKET HIT AN ALL-TIME HIGH RECORD!!!!!!!!!!!

    Who should be given the credit?

    President George W. Bush.

    Oh, and he’s a Republican if you didn’t know.

  53. For Jeffrey:

    You say I’m a “GOP hack.” Perhaps you are not aware of who I am. A little background:

    Eric Dondero Rittberg

    First voted Libertarian in 1982 absentee out in the Persian Gulf while serving on the USS Luce DDG-38
    Libertarian Party of Florida Secretary, 1985-87
    Libertarian Party National Committee, 1986/87
    Libertarian candidate for State House, 1986
    Travel Aide, Libertarian Presidential candidate Ron Paul, 1987/88
    Libertarian Delegate, National Conventions, 1987, 1989
    Chairman, Florida Libertarian Republican Organizing Comm. 1990
    Founder, Republican Liberty Caucus, 1990
    Chairman, Republian Liberty Caucus, 1990 – 1993
    Personal Aide and Political Advisor to former Libertarian Presidential Candidate & Millionaire Roger MacBride, 1991-95
    Campaign Coordinator, Ron Paul for Congress, 1995/96
    Senior Aide, US Congressman Ron Paul, 1997-2003
    And… Petitioned in over 20 states nationwide for Libertarian Party ballot access

  54. For Jeffrey:

    “I’ll take 1 libertarian activist like Eric Dondero for 100 on-line Libertarian computer hackers any day of the week.”

    Chuck Moulton, National Vice-Chair
    Libertarian Party
    Republican Liberty Caucus National Conv.
    Orlando, Florida Sept. 16, 2006

  55. Now Bush should be given credit for the stock market?!? Dondero, now I’m really starting to question your sanity. Please explain for us how Bush deserves credit for this. (Never mind the massive spending increases that have taken place during this administration – we’ll just spend ourselves into prosperity just like Keynes advocated!) Do you similarly credit Clinton for the stock market boom of the late 90s?

    Every libertarian with an iota of economic sense understands that government does not create wealth, it can only destroy it. And I have yet to see anything significant that Bush has done to free up the marketplace. I’m really wondering how much of this recent run-up is illusory just like that which we experienced in the Clinton era.

  56. Eric:

    When was the last time a Republican president gave us a balanced budget? When was the last time a Republican president cut the federal payroll? (I think it might have been Eisenhower. Or was it Coolige?)

    Government takes wealth out of the economy when it spends the wealth — not when it taxes the wealth. Deficits take from those who borrow and subsidize those who have money to lend.

    Stock market is booming because baby boomers are in their peak savings years. It’s pure demographics. When the boomers retire en masse, expect bad things to happen to the Dow.

  57. Man you guys are tough.

    You can’t even give George W. Bush credit for the stock market. My God.

    Does everything Bush does suck? If you stub your toe on the sidewalk do you blame it on George Bush?

    Do you hate Bush’s daughters? Maybe his dog Barnie too?

    Your blind hatred is starting to show.

  58. Eric, the problem is that in the Republican Party the few people who even remotely give a damn about freedom are seen as oddities, mere window dressing. Maybe if Ron Paul was Speaker of the House & Jeff Flake was Senate Majority Leader you’d have a point, but they’re deliberately kept to the background as curiousities.

    Neither party is worth supporting. Chaos is the best we can do for now, no one that loves & respects individual liberty is going to be handed the keys to DC anytime soon.

  59. Tough? Eric, I asked a couple of straightforward questions along with a little standard libertarian commentary to support my position. Your completely evasive “answer” is to whine about our blind hatred of everything Bush. As for me, I don’t hate Bush, but I do think he’s absolutely terrible as a president. I will gladly give him credit for anything he does that is consistent with libertarian principles, but I’m still waiting (and not holding my breath).

  60. Eric,

    I do hate Bush. He’s violated everything this country used to stand for. For an America to have torture as it’s offical policy to terrorism tells me all I need to know.

    The mere use of “signing statements” by Bush should be enough to impeach him from office, if things were working right, of course. We are following the Soviet Union down the same path.
    We’ll be hauling our flag down soon enough.

  61. /2006/03/13/senate-democrats-more-libertarian-than-their-gop-counterparts/

    Does this answer you’re question, Eric, or is it merely a conspiracy of us hating Bush?

    Bush has been an abhorrent president by any libertarian standards. His most libertarian proposals such as Social Security reform, Health Savings plan, vouchers, etc. have been put on the back burner in favor of policies like advocating torture as national policy, pissing in the Middle East hornet’s nest and establishing a huge government “security network” that looks more Orwellian every day. The Democrat are more libertarian because at least they sometimes stand on the opposite side of the fence when they are feeling the partisan urge. Deficit spending is Keynesian, and only the Republicans are doing it.

    I’ve never voted for a Democrat in my life, mind you. But the RLC’s general tendency to fall in line with typical Republicans when partisanship beckons is why I won’t ever join them.

  62. Howard Dean a communist? Stalinist? That’s going a bit far. Every time you open your mouth I agree with you less and you make yourself sound more ridiculous and less libertarian.

    First of all, leveling the communist label at anyone requires burden of proof. He was a progressive and might have supported some statist policies, but he is much less socialist than the average Democrat and much less authoritarian than the average Republican.

    Secondly, he was running on a platform of peace and his fiscal responsibility made him look economically conservative by Democratic standards. He still sucked and I still wouldn’t have voted for him, but he’s more libertarian as anyone in the Bush Administration, which unfortunately doesn’t say very much.

  63. By the way, to all the radicals on the forum, I hope this dialogue highlights that most of us LRCers know when to draw lines of principle. It’s not a choice between either politics or principle – you need both in equal measure. You can’t be all one principle and expect to succeed in a constantly changing world with a complex array of values, but you can’t be all politics and expect to have any moral integrity left.

    (Furthermore, why would anyone from the major parties care enough to infiltrate the ineffective LP in the first place, much less try to make it more politically effective?)

    Partisanship is crap, including LP partisanship, which only leads to bad candidates and low accountability. That the RLC would be partisan in the time of Republican fascism is very sad, and I hope that Dondero is not a spokesperson for that group. Credentials aside, Eric, you’ve strayed from libertarianism.

  64. Nick, Tim, tell me with a straight face as a libertarian, and presumably a socially tolerant person, you see absolutely nothing at all threatening about the rising tide of Islamo-Fascism?

    Doesn’t bother you one bit, that Muslims in the Netherlands have virtually taken over the city councils of Rotterdam and The Hague and are inching closer and closer to outlawing prostitution, and marijuana and Muslim youth in the streets of Amsterdam are haarrassing Gays and Lesbians.

    Doesn’t bother you a bit that Theo van Gogh was brutally murdered by a Muslim for his production of a film critical of Islamic treatment of women?

    Doesn’t bother you a bit that a Muslim extremist burst into the Jewish Community Center in Seattle 3 months ago and gunned down 6 Jewish women while screaming “Allah Akhbar?”

    Doesn’t bother you a bit that you can no longer carry alcohol or drink acohol in the Minneapolis Airport and then take a cab ride, cause the Muslim cabbies will refuse you a ride?

  65. “Credentials aside” Nick?

    What in the hell does that mean? You just willy nilly decided to just sweep my Libertarian credentials aside?

    Who died and made you boss man of the Libertarians?

    How about if I just decide to sweep your Libertarian credentials aside?

    If you’re soft on Islamo-Fascism, you’re no libertarian in my book.

    And buddy, I was active in this movement before you were even in diapers.

  66. B-psycho, how ironice you made that statement that people like Jeff Flake, Butch Otter and Ron Paul are “oddities” in the GOP and not really taken seriously.

    Guess you don’t pay too much attention to the news, do ya?

    With all the Foley scandal now hitting Hastert, conservatives have speculated on who would be the new Speaker of the House if Hastert steps down.

    Two names have popped up. One of them is…

    JEFF FLAKE!!! Imagine that.

    And Ron Paul? Guess you’re not aware that the GOP has given him a SubCommittee Chairmaniship and he’s the Second ranking Member on Foreign Relations. Not too shabby an appointment. You should know I served as Ron’s Senior Aide for 6 years. When he was first elected he requested just two Committee posts; Foreign Relations and Banking.

    Guess what? The GOP leadership, GAVE HIM EXACTLY WHAT HE REQUESTED!!! Which is extremely rare.

    Butch Otter? He’s about to be the next Republican Governor of Idaho.

  67. Nick, how dare you say “in a time of Republican fascism…”

    It’s the Republicans who are the only ones standing up against Fascism, as in Islamo-Fascism. They are the ONLY ONES right now ensuring that my wife/girlfriend is not forced to wear a burka from head to toe, and that I don’t have to kneel on a mat 5 times a day and pray to Allah or get my head chopped off.

    WAKE UP!!! These Radical Muslims want to KILL US!!

  68. Nick, how dare you say “in a time of Republican fascism”¦”

    Good point — he omitted the proto- prefix. There’s still time to stop them.

    I’m just waiting for Dondero to mention that the terrorists hate us for our freedoms, but that’s OK, because in a few more years of Republican rule there won’t be any more freedoms for them to hate us for.

    Give me liberty, or…. (sniveling) at least keep me safe, King!

  69. Eric, you said:
    Doesn’t bother you a bit that you can no longer carry alcohol or drink acohol in the Minneapolis Airport and then take a cab ride, cause the Muslim cabbies will refuse you a ride?

    That means you think that a cabdriver should not have the right to forbid alcohol in his own vehicle if he or she so chooses.

    Or do you merely think that being a Moslem means you can not exercise your property rights in the same way as anyone else?

    Either way, that’s definitely not a libertarian.

    But as the person responsible for Libertarians for Bush, you long ago lost any credibility.

    In case you don’t understand, the only difference between the jihadis and the American neocons (including the Bush administration) is that they each want to kill a different group of people and impose a different group of laws on everyone else. But their fundamental program is the same: against freedom. And you actively call on us to support them? Not a very libertarian thing to do.

  70. “talked about” isn’t the same as actually being picked. I see no reason to believe they want any shift from business as usual. Besides, that assumes they keep the House.

    Then again, WTF am I doing arguing with you anyway, you argued libertarians should support friggin LIEBERMAN!! You don’t want freedom, just power, admit it.

  71. Dondero is again full of it. The 30 “libertarians” he says hold office as Republicans are hardly libertarians but Right-wing conservatives. I’d vote Democrat before I’d vote for another Republican. And I’ve never voted for them before. But with their war mongering, gay hating, immigrant bashing ways I saw screw the Republicans and may they be destroyed in this election. Not likely but I can dream. And by the way I wouldn’t vote for any Republican no matter how libertarian they saw they are. Supporting anyone of them helps keep that vile, evil party alive. And the sooner it is buried the better.

  72. And why is this loud mouth war loving little toadie dominating this forum. Why isn’t he out in Republican blogs telling them how wonderful liberty is instead of telling Libertarians why they ought to support racists and fascists. Rohrbacher is no libertarian and with Ron Paul working with racists and the like I doubt he is. He was always a bit close to the radical right and has gone off the deep end even campaigning with the militia. I am glad it’s his last term in office and regret supporting him when he ran for president in the LP (and then promptly deserted it for the GOP).

  73. “You just willy nilly decided to just sweep my Libertarian credentials aside?”

    You forgot to mention “Libertarians for Bush” in your initial credentials, which makes me even more willing to toss your credentials aside. That’s the most completely stupid thing I’ve ever heard in my life. I don’t know a single person that could honestly combine those three words with a straight face after Bush has steamrolled over our civil liberties with the Patriot Act, declared unconstitutional war against a country that did not do anything to us and has only made your feared “Islamo-Fascists” angrier and more interested in killing us.

    Good job. You may have just taken the reins as the dumbest person I’ve ever met. And I’m a pragmatist libertarian who supports moderate transitions, relatively mainstream positions and a strong and prepared military. Why don’t you go hang out with your fascist friends (like Ann Coulter) and quit soiling the word “libertarian” with your idiocy. Love, Boss Man.

  74. Get Real,

    While I would agree with you for the most part about Republicans usually being bad, Ron Paul, Jeff Flake and a handful of others are exceptions to the rule. While they lean right, they are both in the libertarian quadrant.

    The “voting rights act” vote by Paul which you suggest as racist is more importantly about the fact that it only addresses the southern states and does not hold the northern states to the same levels of protection. This leads to governments in southern states having to jump through hoops to prove that they’re not racist, while the northern states don’t. Either we cut the restrictions for everyone or we apply them to everyone – this only perpetuates the false notion that the south is the only racist epicenter and that the north is accepting and thus does not need to be bound to the same restrictions.

    I personally support a uniform level of restriction – protecting voting rights is a perfectly valid function of government.

  75. Ann Coulter is not Fascist. It’s the Democrats who are Fascists. Coulter largely sucks on social matters, but she’s a hardcore free marketeer on economics, friend of libertarian Larry Kudlow and a solid “Wall Street Journal Economic libertarian.

    As for Libertarians for Bush, well you Libertarian Party people didn’t give us much choice in 2004 now did ya?

    Let’s see, you had a nationally-known radio talk show host who at one point was appearing on over 100 stations, you had a Hollywood Movie Producer who even produced one of the greates comedies of all time “Trading Places” with Eddie Murphy. And not only that he at one time managed Led Zeppalin and was a boyfriend to Bette Midler. Then you had some guy who had run for Texas State House a couple times, and claimed to be a “Constitutional Scholar” even though he never graduated college.

    And who do you all pick?

    Why the college drop out, of course.

  76. “Rohrabacher is no libertarian.”

    Next you’ll be saying that Libertarian Party Founder Dave Nolan is “no libertarian.”

    Hey Newbie, if you’d been around a while in the libertarian movement you’d know that Dana Rohrabacher was the Leader of the Libertarian Caucus in Young Americans for Freedom in the late 1960s, which led to the formation of the Modern Libertarian Movement and the Libertarian Party.

    He is a longtime friend Libertarian stalwart Don Ernsberger of Pennsylvania and numerous other “early libertarians.”

    When Scott Kohlhaas, Roger MacBride and I walked the halls of Congress for two weeks in 1994 trying to get co-sponsors for our bill to Absolish Selective Service (the Draft), Dana was one of our very first co-sponsors.

    Dana’s congressional staff are almost entirely all libertarian.

    Over the years Dana has consistently scored in the top 5 on the Liberty Index ratings of Congress.

    Know your facts before you start spouting out nonsense.

  77. Hey Get Real,

    Did you catch the latest edition of Reason Magazine? Full 6 page story on libertarian Republican Butch Otter running for Governor of Idaho.

    Otter is plugged as a solid “libertarian” throughout the article. And this by sometimes liberal leaning Reason Magazine!

  78. B-psycho, you bash Joe Lieberman. Were you aware that Ned Lamont and his supporters slammed him for four things? His support for Bush’s tax cuts, his opposition to affirmative action, his support for school vouchers, and his implied support for privatizing Social Security.

    Which one of the above is NOT a libertarian position?

    And incidentally, THERE IS NO LIBERTARIAN PARTY CANDIDATE IN THE RACE FOR US SENATE IN CONNECTICUT!

    The CT LP is virtually non-existent.

    Would you advise Libertarians in the State to just sit home and not vote?

    Furthermore, EVERY SINGLE SELF-IDENTIFIED LIBERTARIAN I MET IN CONNECTICUT when I was petitioning for Lieberman signed our petitions and said, “I’m a Libertarian, and I’ve always liked Joe.”

    Not only that, Lieberman had a bunch of self-described “libertarian” staffers, like Asst. Press Secretary Andrew Berman, an active Member of the College Libertarians.

  79. “As for Libertarians for Bush, well you Libertarian Party people didn’t give us much choice in 2004 now did ya?”

    A perfectly valid criticism and one that I would agree with you on. That is one of the reasons we launched the Libertarian Reform Caucus so we can make the party pragmatic and reasonable enough to attract attractive candidates and donations. That doesn’t mean in any way that I would ever have cast a vote for Bush instead of Badnarik. Bush is a swine and his policies have centralized government and corporate power, crushed domestic liberties and made the world less safe.

    But seriously, if one must vote for the major parties, a more libertarian option would have been to vote for Kerry for president and vote Republicans into Congress so they kill each others’ proposals. The last time we had a Democratic President and a Republican Congress, both sides were acting more libertarian and the budget turned into a surplus.

  80. “It’s the Democrats who are Fascists.”

    True, to a degree, but by the actual definition of fascism, the Republicans are far more so.

    “Fascism is associated by many scholars with one or more of the following characteristics: a very high degree of nationalism, economic corporatism, a powerful, dictatorial leader who portrays the nation, state or collective as superior to the individuals or groups composing it.”

    Minus the “dictator” part – an easy ad hominem the Republican leadership would fit the definition exactly.

  81. His support for Bush’s tax cuts, his opposition to affirmative action, his support for school vouchers, and his implied support for privatizing Social Security.

    Which one of the above is NOT a libertarian position?

    Vouchers are a back door to complete government control of education, de facto turning private schools into government schools through the power of the purse.

    SS “privatization” by allowing government-vetted investment in select corporations is pure fascism, cementing corporate-government collusion.

    Bush’s tax cuts went disproportionately to corporations and the rich; his deficit spending is a delayed tax which will have to be paid by everyone while giving massive interest payments to the bigger bankers and deferring responsibility away from the gang that spent the money.

  82. I would agree that in the context of recent history, the Democrats have actually grown government less than Republicans. Looking at the record, Democratic presidents like Carter and Clinton were far more fiscally responsible than any of the recent Republican presidents (and more socially tolerant). As I have said the other day in a different post about the left-libertarian connections, I also agree that us Libertarians have more in common with the Democrats – we tend to share their values, if not their solutions. I have more success targeting the Left with libertarianism than the Right. If I were to ever join one of the major parties (which I doubt I would), it would be the Democrats. Instead, I’d rather steal their thunder by making a more progressive, anti-authoritarian, anti-corporate/pro-small business, pro-environment small government party and actually attain the values they claim to have by proposing the decentralization of government and corporate power.

    Right on.

  83. The *ONE* thing that government has as a source of centralized power that makes it a worthwhile endeavor at all is that it has the capacity to act as a governor upon the power-abuses of other entities (and *should* be used to do the same unto itself; but that takes private citizens being “eternally vigilant.”)

    Actually, that’s the one thing that makes it most dangerous – too much centralization, leading to unlimited power abuses on its part.

  84. the Liberal Democrats have just managed to get libertarian petitions for Property Rights and Spending Limits thrown off the ballots in Nevada, Oklahoma, Montana, and Missouri.

    True, and the Republican House wouldn’t allow the medical marijuana vote to be offically recognized in DC.

    Rohrabacher is an ex-libertarian.

  85. The libertarian movement has always more closely aligned itself with the Right than the Left, and I think that was a huge mistake.

    The second part is correct; the first is not. The libertarian movement in the 18th and 19th centuries, and probably before that, was always on the liberal left. The 20th century aberration of a libertarian-conservative alliance is giving way back to this more traditional and logical arrangement.

    http://mises.org/story/2099

  86. For anyone tempted to believe that Eric is a libertarian:

    Same feeling many of us have with Joe Lieberman.

    He’s mostly wrong on a whole slew of social and economic matters. But he is RIGHT ON on the War in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    That’s why True libertarians support him.

    -Eric Dondero
    http://www.smallgov.org/?p=355#comments

    So, a “true libertarian” supports warmongers who are also authoritarian in their social and economic views. Can anything be more backwards?

  87. “So, a ‘true libertarian’ supports warmongers who are also authoritarian in their social and economic views. Can anything be more backwards?”

    I’d say “no”.

  88. In over a half-decade of Republican political dominance, Americans have witnessed a huge expansion in the scope and cost of government, a questionably justified and so-far unsuccessful war in Iraq, serious erosions of civil liberty, and a troubling tendency toward an imperial executive.

    the only things I take exception to: there’s nothing questionable about the war, it is unquestionably evil and a deliberate lie. Nor will it be successful no matter how long it goes on.

    Otherwise this is accurate and true. I’m not really ready to re-join the Democrats, except perhaps as part of the Freedom Caucus, but I do hope they win control of both houses of Congress this November.

    This would mean a lot of investigations next year and, if I can be so optimistic, impeachment hearings.

  89. Nick are you friggin’ nuts???!!! Vote for Kerry. I’d rather slit my wrists. He’s a Fascist swine. Worst of the worst.

    I would have rather written in the Constitution Party candidate on my Texas ballot rather than vote for Kerry or Badnarik.

    But luckily I was honored to vote for my fellow Texan George W. Bush.

  90. Hey Paulie, did Republicans put up blockers at post offices and grocery stores to keep libertarian petitioners from gathering signatures?

    It’s one thing to oppose a libertarian inititive. Quite another to keep it off the ballot through violent and extreme tactics.

    I literally had a Democrat operative follow me for two whole days in Montana to keep me from gathering signatures. On primary day, June 23, the Democrats put 12 (!!!) blockers at the Butte Community Center to keep our 2 libertarian petitioners (one was well-known Libertarian Party of IL stalwart Jake Whittmer), from getting sigs.

    Do you call that fair?

  91. Nick, Paulie, your understanding of politics and libertarianism is bass ackwards. Y’all are obvious newbies to our movement.

    Anyone who supports Islamo-Fascism and forcing American women to wear burkas, and American men to bow down to Allah cannot be a libertarian.

    The true libertarian position is to oppose those who wish to violate our civil liberties. Those individuals who want to stop free speech like comedy routines, operas, or documentary films. Those individuals who want to outlaw prostitution and marijuana in Amsterdam, Europe-wide and throughout the West. Those individuals who want to stop allowing semi-nude beaches in France. They are the Fascists. How any so-called libertarian could support this is beyond me?

    Are you all sure you’re not confused Authoritarians who maybe just like the sound of the word “libertarian?”

  92. Robert,

    A true libertarian opposes Islamists who wish to impose Sharia law throughout the West, and even in the United States of America.

    Are you blind?

    Read the Drudge Report today. The French Police Chief is now saying that France is in a Civil War with Muslims.

    Did you not catch the news a week ago, of the German opera that caved into Muslim pressure and canceled their play due to fear of Muslim violence?

    Did you not hear about the brutal murder of Theo van Gogh a couple years ago?

    How about the rampaging Muslims against the Danish Cartoons.

    And it’s already spreading here to the US. Look at Hamtramac, Michigan or Minneapolis, MN or Seattle where 6 Jewish women were gunned down by a crazed Muslim.

    Libertarians must stand up to this Neo-Fascism and fight for our civil liberties!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  93. If Islamo-Fascism doesn’t exist than what label do you put on the murderer of Theo van Gogh?

    How about those who sawed off the head of WSJ reporter Daniel Pearle before they forced him to cite, “I am a Jew, my Mother was a Jew, my Father was a Jew.”

    What about those 19 Muslims that flew Jet planes into NYC’s Twin Towers and the Pentagon.

    What label do you put on these people? Common criminals maybe?

    Or perhaps they’re just “disturbed” and in need of a couple years in psychiatric care, with 3 square meals a day, cable TV and visits from relatives?

  94. This is for Paulie who says Rohrabacher is an “ex libertarian”. Oh, and btw, Clifford Thies, author of the Liberty Index is a Ph.D. and the Durrell Chair of Economics at Shenandoah University.

    Notice how Thies says Rohrabacher is “Number 3 Libertarian” in the Congress, only 2 points behind Ron Paul.

    Clifford:

    The Best and the Worst
    In the House of Representatives, the overall top score in this year’s index is 90, posted by Congressman Jeff Flake (R-AZ). Congressman Flake has been at or tied for the top spot since he took office five years ago. Number 2 is Congressman Ron Paul (R-TX), 82, and who has been first or tied for first or second since he returned to the U.S. Congress in 1997. Number 3 is Congressman Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), 80, who was the winner of the first several RLC indexes way back when, and has in recent years rebounded to the top of the rankings.

  95. What do you mean “our movement?” There are ZERO libertarians here who agree with you. I have no clue what movement you are referring to but obviously it is not the libertarian one.

    “Are you all sure you’re not confused Authoritarians who maybe just like the sound of the word “libertarian?””

    Sometimes I get the feeling that you are pulling our leg. That was a joke, right? After all, you’re the one who supports Bush, not us.

    “If Islamo-Fascism doesn’t exist…” (et. al.)

    How about Islamo-Anti-Semites? Islamo-Theocrats? Islamo-Authoritarians? Any of these terms is more accurate than “Islamo-Fascism” which is merely a strawman ad hominem to make the war sound more righteous and draw connections between angry Muslims and the axis powers of WWII. Fascism is collusion between the state and corporations to repress individual freedoms – most Islamo-Authoritarians think corporations = West = evil violation of Sharia law. Thus, NOT FASCIST. Not that you listen to anything.

  96. “Nick are you friggin’ nuts???!!! Vote for Kerry. I’d rather slit my wrists. He’s a Fascist swine. Worst of the worst. I would have rather written in the Constitution Party candidate on my Texas ballot rather than vote for Kerry or Badnarik. But luckily I was honored to vote for my fellow Texan George W. Bush.”

    Thus proving that you a.) ignore the historical trends of a Democratic president polarized against a Republican Congress as bringing out the libertarian in both sides and b.) are not a libertarian. Badnarik might have been a crappy choice, but he was the only rational option for libertarians in the last election because he was the only candidate within or even close to the libertarian quadrant.

    Quit wasting your time here. You’re preaching to a brick wall and you’re only making the wall solidify against everything you’re saying.

  97. Nick, that’s quite a statement you made there. Are you implying that the Hammer of Truth Web Blob represents the entire libertarian movement?

    While I really like this Blog, and there are some very nice folks here, like Stephen Gordon, I would never go so far as to suggest that HOT IS the libertarian movement. Hardly.

    I’d describe this Blog as Leftist Libertarian even Anarchist, mainly. Sort of “Bill Mahr/ACLU/Rolling Stone/Marijuana smokers” segment of the libertarian spectrum.

    Definitely not Libertarian Right, or even Economic Libertarian.

    I’d say the posters here represent maybe 5% of the libertarian spectrum, 10% at most.

  98. So Nick, are you saying that Gary Nolan and Aaron Russo were “not real libertarians”?

    Badnarik won in a fluke 4th ballot only as a compromise because delegates wanted unity and didn’t want to piss off Russo nor Nolan. He didn’t win cause he was “more libertarian” than Russo or Nolan.

    There was never any of “Badnarik is more libertarian than so and so, so I’m voting for him…”

    I have many friends who were at that convention. You can fool others with your spin, but you can’t fool me.

  99. Definitely not Libertarian Right, or even Economic Libertarian.

    Dondero: considering I’m working on the campaign of a 35-year economist and have posted numerous times on fiscal issues here, you might want to back the fuck up on that statement (his biggest issue has been property rights and ending eminent domain abuse).

    You might want to throw us a bone as to what questions would a non-economic non-right libertarian answer correctly in your view.

  100. BTW Dondero, I interviewed all three after the 2004 convention and watched Nolan’s Run last week at OSU (and spoke with him personally as well). So I can say with authority that your assertion:

    Badnarik won in a fluke 4th ballot only as a compromise because delegates wanted unity and didn’t want to piss off Russo nor Nolan. He didn’t win cause he was “more libertarian” than Russo or Nolan.

    …is total bullshit.

    Badnarik won because the vote was split between him and Nolan. In Nolan’s concession speech he urged his delegates to vote for Badnarik. Behind the scenes (and on video) it was because he had good reason to have some reservations about Russo self-aggrandizing about fundraising and media-hype.

    Granted, I think the mid-vote concession speech was a breach of nominating protocol, but it’s the damned truth.

    If you care to make any more assertions pulled from your ass, I’m more than happy to drive over to Nolan’s bar a few blocks from my house tonight and ask him.

  101. Stephen, I’m honestly confused by your question. Please re-state it.

    BTW, I had a short article published today on the highly popular http://www.GOPProgress.com site. It’s a site that lists itself as for “moderate libertarians”. It’s a tad bit too mainstream and rah rah Republican for me. But for all of you all who accuse me of not really being a libertarian, take note, that as “mainstream libertarian” as I am, there are folks out there much more moderate than I am who are also libertarians.

    I’m at the 100/90 level. They’re more at 70/70. Yet, they have just as much right as me, or anyone else who scored over 66/66 to label themselves “libertarian.”

    http://www.GOPProgress.com

  102. “Gary Nolan and Aaron Russo were “not real libertarians?””

    I never said that, although I think Russo’s a bit of an egotistical nutjob and Nolan’s a bit too right for my taste. That does not mean that I don’t think that they are true libs.

    It was NOLAN himself who argued that he would target the Right and do everything in his power to spoil the election for Bush to hold him accountable for growing government and abusing government power while feigning to be a conservative. His idea was exactly what I proposed – Kerry would become president, the Republicans would keep Congress (and the two would deadlock and kill off each others’ proposals as they did during Clinton’s first term) and the Republicans would be forced to repent for becoming the bigger government party of the two.

    But, nahhh. Let’s follow your idea. You should have been overjoyed Badnarik was picked, as it let your “fellow Texan George Bush” whom you were so “honored” to vote for have an easy win, right?

  103. “I had a short article published today”

    Who cares? You have no credibility here.

    “Are you implying that the Hammer of Truth Web Blob represents the entire libertarian movement? …I’d describe this Blog as Leftist Libertarian even Anarchist, mainly.”

    Ok, if you want to argue that, I’ll give you that. But even on Right-Libertarian blogs, anyone who says they were honored to vote for Bush would not have any credibility. Most of the people on the LP’s blog lean more Right. Same with Lew Rockwell. I doubt they would give you the time of day either. The Cato Institute, which leans Right, has been intensely critical of Bush.

    Bush supporters have no credibility with libertarians simply because Bush is one of the most unlibertarian presidents of the past century. He has grown government more than any president in the past 50 years, supported literally (by definition) fascist policies, made us less safe and damaged civil liberties. It’s just a “goddamn piece of paper,” remember?

  104. Hey Paulie, did Republicans put up blockers at post offices and grocery stores to keep libertarian petitioners from gathering signatures?

    As you well know, Eric, the petitioners come from all sorts of ideological backgrounds – and, mostly, from none. Mercs outnumber activist petitioners by a large margin. Have Republicans ever blocked initiatives? Well, the only case I can think off the top of my head was getting the US House under Gingrinch to de-certify the election results on medical marijuana in DC in 1998. Not an initiative, but they have also used thug tactics (including state employees on the clock) to kick the LP off the ballot, for example in Illinois that same year.

    It’s one thing to oppose a libertarian inititive. Quite another to keep it off the ballot through violent and extreme tactics.

    Well I guess you don’t have to bother to do that if you can just keep the votes from being officially counted.

    Would rigging presidential elections count?

  105. Nick, Paulie, your understanding of politics and libertarianism is bass ackwards. Y’all are obvious newbies to our movement.

    Incorrect.

    Anyone who supports Islamo-Fascism

    There is no such thing. You didn’t read the article I posted to back that up, did you?

    and forcing American women to wear burkas, and American men to bow down to Allah cannot be a libertarian.

    True, but, since no one here supports that, and there is no chance of that happening even if they did, that would amount to a red herring.

  106. The true libertarian position is to oppose those who wish to violate our civil liberties.

    Absolutely! Those like the Buh Crime Family who not only wish to but do violate them through the “patriot act”, secret wiretapping, indefinite secret detentions in secret prisons without charges or lawyers, torture, suspension of habeas corpus, and wish to violate it much further by outlawing all dissent (“you are either with us or you are with the terrorists”).

    They are the Fascists.

    Yes, the Bush Crime Family have been fascists ever since they were close friends of Hitler, and still are today.

    How any so-called libertarian could support this is beyond me?

    Me too.

    Are you all sure you’re not confused Authoritarians who maybe just like the sound of the word “libertarian?”

    Quite sure, just as I’m sure you are one.

    Are you all sure you’re not confused Authoritarians who maybe just like the sound of the word “libertarian?”

  107. Paulie, you can show Mr. Dunderhead all the links you want, but it won’t make any difference whether he reads them or not. He’s a dyed-in-the-wool liberventionist who will continue supporting his “libertarian” heroes, George Bush, Neal Boortz, Joe Lieberman, Benito Mussolini, et. al., no matter what.

  108. What label do you put on these people? Common criminals maybe?

    Sure, and religious fanatics, zealots, extremists – but clearly not fascists. See the article I linked about that.

    This is for Paulie who says Rohrabacher is an “ex libertarian”. Oh, and btw, Clifford Thies, author of the Liberty Index is a Ph.D. and the Durrell Chair of Economics at Shenandoah University.

    What does his degree or job have to do with the accuracy of his assessment? Robert Reich has an economics Ph D too, and I wouldn’t rely on a “liberty index” he would put out any more than one put out by Thies or you.

    It’s true that Rohrabacher was a libertarian back during the Vietnam war era. He is now a Reagan-Bush Republican. Ron Paul votes alone much of the time. If Rohrabacher was still a libertarian he would vote “no” on most appropriation bills. I’ll give him residual credit for Hinchey-Rohrabacher.

  109. What about those 19 Muslims that flew Jet planes into NYC’s Twin Towers and the Pentagon.

    It’s hard to believe anyone still takes that absurd 19 Arab conspiracy theory seriously.

    not even Economic Libertarian.

    How so? Because we’re against corporate domination?

    I never said that, although I think Russo’s a bit of an egotistical nutjob and Nolan’s a bit too right for my taste. That does not mean that I don’t think that they are true libs.

    Russo is. Nolan isn’t. He’s a libertarian-leaning conservative.

    Paulie, you can show Mr. Dunderhead all the links you want, but it won’t make any difference whether he reads them or not. He’s a dyed-in-the-wool liberventionist who will continue supporting his “libertarian” heroes, George Bush, Neal Boortz, Joe Lieberman, Benito Mussolini, et. al., no matter what.

    True, but perhaps they’ll be of some use to someone.

    120 *Bush Crime Family, not Buh. Duh. Dush?

  110. Paulie, why is it you see only Bush violating your civil liberties. Why don’t you ever acknowledge that Muslims violate civil liberties too?

    What about the civil liberties of Daniel Peal, Wall Street Journal reporter who had his neck sawed off by Muslim radicals because he was a Jew? What about the civil liberties of Theo van Gogh who had a Muslim extremist knife him in the chest and then twist it while he looked him in the eyes shouting “Alla Ahkbar”?

    What about the civil liberties of Paris residents who are no longer permitted to bathe topless and clothless on the River Seign so as not to “offend Muslim sensibilities”?

    What about the civil liberties of German opera fans?

    What about the civil liberties of Jew woman at Jewish Community Centers all over the Nation, now living in fear of Muslims gunning them down because they are Jewish?

  111. Oh, I see Paulie, so take the Clinton approach to Islamic Terrorism huh? Treat it as a crime, not a war. Let’s just sick the FBI on them and that will be enough, right? Or maybe just hire some orange spandex wearing “Dog type” mercenaries to hunt them down, right?

  112. Sorry Nick. I supported both Gary Nolan and Aaron Russo for the Libertarian Party nomination in 2004. I have numerous witnesses to that:

    Anthony Garcia – Texas Ballot Drive Coordinator, 2004.

    Bill Redpath, LP petitioners Scott Kohlhaas and Jake Whittmer.

    I believe even Stephen Gordon and Tom Knapp can verify for you that I was a “Nolan or Russo backer.”

    I was horrified when I learned Badnarik had gotten the nomination. That’s when I switched to Bush.

    Let’s hope that you LPers don’t fuck up again in 2008 and nominate some Bozo like George Phillies, Carol Moore or L. Neil Smith. Let’s hope you nominate a Real World Libertarian that all libertarians can be proud of.

  113. Let’s take a poll here.

    Show of hands please. How many of you agree with Paulie that “Arabs flying planes into the World Trade Center” was just a farce, a big conspiracy by the Bush Administration to bring about a War with Iraq and crack down on the civil liberties of Americans.

    C’mon you all. Don’t be bashful.

    How many of you all believe 9/11 was an inside job?

  114. Eric, Bush and his government violates the civil liberties of Americans every day, and they want to increase those violations as rapidly and expansively as possible. If I get wiretapped, it won’t be by a jihadi. It will be by a Bush functionary. And I’ve lived with the possibility of Moslems wanting to kill me at my synagogue for decades now. But the current American regime is the one that is most dangerous to me, because I live in the USA, and not in the Middle East or Europe. And if we can’t protect liberty here, then what does it matter, whether the taskmaster wears a turban or a ten-gallon hat?

    The Bush doctrine is this: the president can do whatever he wants because he’s commander in chief, and nothing–not Congress, not the courts, not individual liberties–should be able to withstand his wishes. And you were “honored” to vote for him?

    And the only real objection I’ve ever seen you voice to Badnarik is his lack of a college degree. Feh!

  115. BTW, Eric. I don’t think 9/11 was an inside job. After all, that would require the belief that government is competent at doing at least a few things.

  116. “I supported both Gary Nolan and Aaron Russo for the Libertarian Party nomination in 2004.”

    I don’t care. I never said you didn’t.

    “What about the civil liberties of (insert topic of choice here)?”

    If there was any danger of an militant Islamic-Theocratic front rising politically and imposing Sharia Law on America, I would be equally critical of that. European governments are failing to protect their citizens, American government is “protecting” their citizens too much by creating an authoritarian infrastructure and scaring us into complying and sacrificing our civil liberties because of a mythical “rising tide of Islamo-Fascism.” Both suck.

    Libertarians may have a wide array of values, but the prominent guiding value should always be liberty. Once you have strayed from that guiding value to other guiding values like fear, war, big government, theocracy, state corporatism, etc. and stop questioning the gov’t, one can no longer call oneself a libertarian.

  117. And while I think the 9/11 conspiracy movement has some interesting points that I’d like to see investigated more, I think, like all conspiracy theories, I wouldn’t jump on the bandwagon until it became mainstream enough to make it go beyond speculation, coincidence and possibility.

    “Let’s hope you nominate a Real World Libertarian that all libertarians can be proud of.”

    Something we can agree on, although I question what you mean when you say “libertarian” anymore. Russo is no mainstreamer, by the way, and his newest documentary is entirely built on conspiracy theory, and a rather boring one at that. I don’t think we had any really good options then, and I’m still waiting for a good option now. I’m not interested at all in a presidential run by “Girls Gone Wild” Stanhope or “Let’s Flee to Canada to Escape Peyote Conviction” Kubby.

  118. And last thing, Eric.

    “Why don’t you ever acknowledge that Muslims violate civil liberties too?”

    Learn to draw a line between the militant radical theocratic Muslims and the supermajority that aren’t. Hearing these sort of statements over and over again lumping all Muslims together as violent radicals is exactly the sort of thing that got the Muslims in Europe upset in the first place, polarizing them against us and making them want to change governments that they feel don’t represent them.

    While any violent criminal needs to be locked up (including Bush, for war crimes – he needs one hell of a waterboarding and maybe he’ll change his mind about advocating torture as official gov’t policy), peaceable Muslims are afforded the same liberties as everyone else – which does not include violating the liberties of others.

    But maybe, like the Nuge, you’re a neocon conspiracy theorist who thinks “peaceable Muslims” are a myth and we should turn the Middle East into a blacktop.

  119. Nick, how can you have liberty if you are dead? These Islamo-Fascist Fucks want to slit our throats with a rusty knife, no less.

    You obviously care little about civil liberties that matter most. Wiretapping? Get real. How relevent is that to anything? Do you honestly believe the government is going to wiretap you?

    Civil Liberties that matter are SEXUAL FREEDOM ISSUES!!! That effects my life. Not the stupid ass arcane issue of wiretaps. Being able to go to a Swingers Club in Houston matters to me. Being able to sunbathe nude in my backyard or at designated beaches in Texas (or Paris, France) matters to me and my wife. Being able to get slobbering drunk in the privacy of my own home whenever I want matters to me. And being able to carry a bottle of expensive wine home from Europe without being harrassed by some Muslim Cabbie at the Airport, matters to me. These are all activities that Muslims wish to outlaw IN MY COUNTRY!!!

    These are relevent issues!!

  120. NO WRONG NICK!! ABSOLUTELY FUCKING WRONG!!!!!!!

    What got the Muslims upset in Europe was the socially tolerant atmosphere, specifically women’s rights and tolerance of homosexuals.

    Have you ever even been to Europe? If not, then I’d say you know absolutely nothing about it. I speak 10 to 15 languages, 5 fluently (Spanish, Italian, French, Catalan & Portuguese). I’ve backpacked all over France, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, Germany, Monaco, and Portugal.

    Europe is in a huge crisis right now. The Commander of the French Police Force was just quoted two days ago in the UK Telegraph as saying, “We’re at a civil war now with Muslims.”

    It all has to do with sexually frustrated Muslim men who can’t get laid for nothing, being turned down by pretty French girls. As it always has been in the history of civilization, EVERYTHING COMES DOWN TO SEX!!!

  121. Okay Nick, tell you what. I’ll call a truce with you, if you agree to something. Hell, I’ll even come out against the War in Afghanistan and Iraq.

    Just tell me some way that we Americans can stop the rising onslaught of Muslim intolerance, and help our European friends to stop their Muslim problem. That’s all I ask.

    If you advocate a Fortress America and a Fortress Europe to keep these Muslims out, than I say fine, I’m with you 100%.

    But if you don’t have a solution to the rising tide of Islamo-Fascism than you just need to shut the hell up.

  122. Jeffrey, if you want me to give you my laundry list of problems with Badnarik, I could write a book here. I don’t think the Editors at Hammer of Truth would like that too much. My Number One problem with him? No, not the lack of college degree. It’s that he has ZERO celebrity. He was a Nobody. Just some Libertarian Party member who ran for Texas State House a couple times. That was his only claim to fame.

    Russo produced one of the greatest comedies of all-time, Trading Places with Eddie Murphy!! He was also Bette Midler’s boyfriend for a stint. Plus HE FRIGGIN’ MANAGED LED ZEPPALIN!! Perhaps you’re not a Zeppalin fan, but they rock!!

    Nolan had been on over 100 radio stations at one point. Plus, he was a damn good public speaker.

    Caveat, I do think Michael Badnarik has gotten better. He’s doing a much better job as a Congressional candidate, and that’s precisely the level he is qualified for and should stay at.

  123. “Peaceable Muslims” Nick? Yeah, I admit there are a few.
    They’re mostly in countries like Kuwait, Bahrain (I spent 9 months of my life stationed in Bahrain), Quatar, Morrocco, and ironically Israel.

    But here’s a question for ya, Nick? How many Muslim Libertarians do you know of?

    And no, Dean Ahmad does not count. Ahmad is a far-left hack who expresses no support for civil liberties, just rants on foreign policy. Besides Ahmad, how many Muslim Lib

    When’s the last time the members of your local Mosque joined in on a Libertarian Party protest against laws against prostitution or to legalize drugs?

    When was the last time you saw a Muslim calling for lowering of the drinking age?

    When was the last time you saw Muslims marching in a parade for Tolerance of Homosexuals?

    When was the last time you saw Muslims testifying at a local City Council meeting of some Beach town asking the Council to allow for clothing optional areas of the Town Beach?

  124. Eric, when’s the last time you saw a Bush supporter (other than ex-libertarians like yourself) doing any of the things you mentioned in your latest comment (138) above?
    And all the stuff you mentioned in comment 134 is abhorrent to the Religious Right, which means they all have a good chance of coming true here in the USA without a single Moslem doing anything about it. Bush supporters don’t like nude beaches, swingers clubs, drinking, etc. Didn’t you notice? Just because they don’t call it shariah, doesn’t mean the agenda of the Right is any better than that of the Moslem jihadis.

    And Badnarik isn’t famous enough for you? Get a life!

  125. This zinger from Melanie Morgan, Syndicated Radio Talk Show Host and World Net Daily contributor, yesterday:

    We are in the middle of a war against Islamic extremists with our young men and women overseas fighting and dying against those who seek to destroy our nation and kill our people.

    These terrorists don’t want to molest us; they want to kill every one of us ”“ Republican, Democrat, Green, Libertarian and the like. (Actually, they’d want to make killing gay activists and adulterers their first priority ”“ but the Democrats don’t seem to believe this.)

  126. Jeffrey, you’re talking about the 1980’s Religious Right; Pat Robertson, Falwell, Anita Bryant, et.al.

    Yeah, I admit the GOP really sucked back then. Really, really sucked.

    But these days the RR has really backed off.

    Look at Georgia. You’d think Georgia (and Alabama) would be the capitol of RR Republicans, right?

    And Ralph Read went down in flames in the GOP primary for Lt. Governor.

    Even Bush gets criticized by the RR. Witness his bucking the RR a couple years ago, and appointing Anne Davidson of Republicans For Choice as RNC Co-Chairman. Bush got heavily criticized for Davidson. Did any Libertarians come to his defense on this?

    And look at the RR not saying a word about Bush’s constant use of foul language. Imagine if Reagan had done that? Whew! The Robertsons and Falwells would have had a hissy fit.

    Jeffrey, the new GOP of 2006 is way different, than the GOP of your older brother.

  127. Eric, you’re an idiot and I’m not going to continue to get my knickers in a twist trying to get you to remember the real definition of being “libertarian.” How many libertarians oppose the right to be whatever the hell religion you want to be? Maybe terrorists would savor killing every one of us. Your fellow asshole Ted Nugent wants to kill every one of them. Maybe you and the terrorists aren’t so different.

    What country gave Osama bin Laden power? Or did you forget? What country continues to station troops in 144 countries, naturally making a lot of people angry at the fact that we’ve built a new fascist global empire, backing our corporate control sometimes with military force? Naturally Westernization by force would piss off religious fanatics and violence is their only means of bringing it down. Every innocent we kill, ten anti-Americans are created. Maybe two of those will be sucked into militancy. So your solution would be to continue this policy? Are you an idiot? Oh wait…

  128. So Ted Nugent is an asshole, huh? Wonder just how many libertarians would agree with you on that assessment, even Libertarian Party members.

    Why stop there? You’re on a roll. How about calling ever single libertarian celebrity out there an asshole too.

    Clint Eastwood? Kurt Russell? James Woods? Gene Simmons? Neal Peart? Danny Elfmann? Dennis Miller? Drew Carey?

    All assholes, right??

    Nick’s brillant belief: If you’re a celebrity, you’re no libertarian, and you’re just a plain asshole.

  129. Addenddum:

    Nick Wilson calls “Ted Nugent an asshole.” Guess he’s not aware that the Nuge is a friend of the Libertarian Party of Michigan, has attended libertarian rallies co-sponsored by the LP (gun rallies and other events), and has supported libertarian candidates throughout the State.

    Wonder if any LPers in MI would be appreciative of Nick’s calling Nugent “an asshole”?

  130. “If you’re a celebrity, you’re no libertarian, and you’re just a plain asshole.”

    Oh yeah. That’s exactly what I said…

    “Nick Wilson calls “Ted Nugent an asshole.”Guess he’s not aware that the Nuge is a friend of the Libertarian Party of Michigan”

    Anyone supporting a mass nuclear holocaust of the Middle East is not just an asshole, but pure EVIL, and yes, they exist in the LP, too. He’s also a misogynistic pig, but that’s sadly pretty common among libs. If Stanhope is picked, our next presidential candidate might be one also.

    No wait, I forgot…It’s because he’s a celebrity. You’re still an idiot.

  131. “Remember the Alamo! Shoot ’em! To show you how radical I am, I want carjackers dead. I want rapists dead. I want burglars dead. I want child molesters dead. I want the bad guys dead. No court case. No parole. No early release. I want ’em dead. Get a gun and when they attack you, shoot ’em.”

    “Our failure has been not to Nagasaki them.”

    “… but if I would have gone over there, I’d have been killed, or I’d have killed, or I’d killed all the hippies in the foxholes…I would have killed everybody.”

    “law and order fanatic”

    Ted’s more like a Conservative asshole who really likes sex.

  132. Eric, one can be a libertarian and an asshole at the same time. Apparently such is Ted Nugent. Well, I never particularly cared for Cat Scratch Fever anyway.

    Of course, one can also be a asshole but not a libertarian. To which particular particpant in this discussion that applies I will, in the name of domestic tranquillity, not suggest. But, Eric, if you happen to look in the mirror, there’s a very good chance that you will catch sight of him.

  133. Oh by the way, I didn’t finish the quote about him wanting all criminals dead. The goes on to include graffitti vandals and shoplifters.

  134. And “Conservative asshole who really likes sex,” IS THE PRECISE DEFINITION OF LIBERTARIAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    When I was first recruited to the Libertarian Party by Dianne Pilcher and Nick Dunbar, straight out of the Navy in Jacksonville, Florida in 1985, they essentially told me, “We Libertarians are Conservatives who hate Jerry Falwell and are Pro-Choice on abortion.” I said, Cool! Sign me up.

    As PJ O’Rourke has said for decades, “Libertarians are essentially Republicans who like to smoke a little weed, like Rock music, and who actually get laid from time to time.”

    (Not his exact quote. But you catch the drift.”

  135. This is why I’m really hoping Doug Stanhope runs for President on the Libertarian ticket.

    He can reach that Maxim reading, sports bar going, weekend golf playing, beer drinking, ’80’s Metal Band listening, single guy in the Chicago suburbs with the 401K and the stock broker job downtown.

    That’s our constituency! That’s who we Libertarians need to reach out too. They usually vote Republican to protect their wallets, but hate the Religious Right wing of the GOP.

    We can win these guys over with a Doug Stanhope for President Campaign. Maybe even get a Ted Nugent endorsement for him.

    Call it the “South Park Libertarian Approach.” Or, better yet, “Blue Collar Libertarianism.”

  136. “And “Conservative asshole who really likes sex,” IS THE PRECISE DEFINITION OF LIBERTARIAN!”

    Oh really? Someone should have alerted me before I joined. Thinking I was getting myself into a serious intellectual/political movement. Silly me.

    “Libertarians are essentially Republicans who like to smoke a little weed, like Rock music, and who actually get laid from time to time.”

    Let’s see…hmm…I’ve never been a Republican (and probably never will be), I think people are idiots to smoke weed and don’t believe in “getting laid.” Although I am a rock musician. But I don’t read Maxim, I think 80s metal sucks, golf is boring and sports bars are annoying (I don’t drink). Guess I’m not a libertarian, yo.

    Libertarianism needs to sell to everyone, not just your cliche stereotype. Doug Stanhope would forever damage the party’s credibility by cornering the Howard Stern misogynist niche and no one else. I say F- that.

  137. Nick, you’re suck a friggin’ prude. Lighten up dude. If you’re worried about credibility for Stanhope, than the LP can nominate a suit and tie guy for VP, like Judge Gray or Art Olivier.

    Yes, libertarianism should be sold to everyone. I agree. But this particular constituency is NOT BEING REPRESENTED BY ANYONE AT THE MOMENT. Democrats hate ’em cause they’re politically incorrect. They hate the Religious Right, cause they’re socially intolerant. These “Blue Collar dudes” are a cinch for Libertarians.

  138. Paulie, why is it you see only Bush violating your civil liberties. Why don’t you ever acknowledge that Muslims violate civil liberties too?

    Naturally, I focus on the regime which is violating OUR civil liberties. If I lived in Iran, I suppose it would be different. Of course, Iran is not nearly as much a threat to WORLD liberty as the Bush gang.

    What about the civil liberties of Jew (sic) woman at Jewish Community Centers all over the Nation, now living in fear of Muslims gunning them down because they are Jewish?

    Well, Eric, most of them aren’t obsessed by any such fears. They would be more justified to live in terror of dying from a slip-and-fall in the bathtub.

    As for fighting terrorism, I’m more concerned with the terrorists imposing fascism and terror on this country: the Bush Crime Family and self-styled “Christian” theocrats.

    Your war on the mythical “Islamo-fascism” is their #1 excuse for doing so.

  139. BTW, Eric. I don’t think 9/11 was an inside job. After all, that would require the belief that government is competent at doing at least a few things.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manhattan_project

    I wouldn’t jump on the bandwagon until it became mainstream enough to make it go beyond speculation, coincidence and possibility.

    36% isn’t mainstream enough for you?

    Russo is no mainstreamer, by the way, and his newest documentary is entirely built on conspiracy theory, and a rather boring one at that.

    It’s built on fact, and only the beginning is boring. TerrorStorm also kicks ass.

    I’m not interested at all in a presidential run by “Girls Gone Wild” Stanhope or “Let’s Flee to Canada to Escape Peyote Conviction” Kubby.

    I think either would make the best candidate the LP ever ran for Prez, especially Kubby.

  140. While any violent criminal needs to be locked up (including Bush, for war crimes – he needs one hell of a waterboarding and maybe he’ll change his mind about advocating torture as official gov’t policy), peaceable Muslims are afforded the same liberties as everyone else – which does not include violating the liberties of others.

    Amen.

    Do you honestly believe the government is going to wiretap you?

    They already do. The only issue is how many people they can find to sift through the recordings.

    But these days the RR has really backed off.

    Quite the opposite. They’ve gotten worse.

    And Ralph Read went down in flames in the GOP primary for Lt. Governor.

    Due to Abramoff connections. Bad example.

    And “Conservative asshole who really likes sex,” IS THE PRECISE DEFINITION OF LIBERTARIAN

    Hell no.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libertarian

    http://isil.org/resources/introduction.swf

  141. When I was first recruited to the Libertarian Party by Dianne Pilcher and Nick Dunbar, straight out of the Navy in Jacksonville, Florida in 1985, they essentially told me, “We Libertarians are Conservatives who hate Jerry Falwell and are Pro-Choice on abortion.” I said, Cool! Sign me up.

    Too bad they misrepresented the party and philosophy to you.

    As PJ O’Rourke has said for decades,

    He was wrong then, and still is.

    This is why I’m really hoping Doug Stanhope runs for President on the Libertarian ticket.

    Perhaps Eric is not aware that Stanhope is for immediate withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan and an investigation into 9-11.

    Doug Stanhope would forever damage the party’s credibility by cornering the Howard Stern misogynist niche and no one else.

    Guys like that go to Stanhope’s shows and end up disappointed.

  142. From wikipedia:

    Critics of Stanhope say that his on-stage persona conflicts with his side-projects like Girls Gone Wild and The Man Show. These mainstream “jock” products play to the horny everyman, while Stanhope on-stage defines himself not just as the “crazy” drunk, but a full-blown social outsider. Stanhope himself has claimed that the shows attract the wrong audiences for his comic fare. In a show in Houston, Texas, Stanhope described one of the Juggies on the Man Show as a transvestite and not caring if she was really a man because he would just “want to poon her in the ass anyway.” This was followed by a stereotypical reaction by jocks in the audience.

    Others suggest his comedy is base at best, or even self-justifyingly iconoclastic for shock effect — similar to charges against Bill Hicks and many other comedians and writers, whose work was initially considered less for meaning and value than for superficial “offensiveness.”

  143. Well Paulie, guess you and I could unite so to speak to support Doug Stanhope for President.

    I don’t care for Kubby. He’s too 2nd or maybe even 3rd tier. Nobody outside of the Libertarian Party has ever heard of the guy. He’s just some marijuana dude who is active in the California LP. Big whoop.

  144. “Nick, you’re suck a friggin’ prude. Lighten up dude.”

    At least your grammar matches your intellegence. Being libertarian does not mean that one must advocate or partake in hedonism just because we want it to be legal.

    Some of us have an interest in being taken seriously someday, something that is difficult for you when your beloved party is advocating fascism by actual definition, torture of unconvicted people, limiting the individual rights of personal citizens and war against countries that never did anything to us, and your number one political issue is being able to go to a swingers’ bar? I agree completely that swingers’ bars should be legal, but is that really the most pressing issue?

    If I am going to run a campaign someday, I’d prefer to not have any skeletons in my closet. Also, it’s easier to sell people on ending the drug war or legalizing prostitution when I have no personal gain in doing so, as I don’t partake in it. Thus why Stanhope won’t be taken seriously.

  145. Well Paulie, guess you and I could unite so to speak to support Doug Stanhope for President.

    Eric, you would support a candidate who favors immediate withdrawal from Afghanistan and Iraq, a 9-11 investigation, and shocks the jocks you want him to bring to the LP with his stage act? I’m surprised.

    I thought the war is your paramount issue? Or did I misunderstand your rationale for endorsing Bush and Lieberman?

    Anyway, it may be moot – Stanhope seems to have abandoned the race. But, if he does still run, he’s one of my two top choices at present.

    As for Kubby, he’s well known in the media and among legalization activists (many of whom are LPers and many not) and is known in California for his work on 215. He’s also prominent in skiing circles.

    Tom Knapp spells out good reasons for endorsing him here:

    http://knappster.blogspot.com/2006/10/first-look-2008-series-end.html

    I know you’ve already seen it, so this is for anyone else who may still be reading here.

  146. Nick:

    Neither your choice to not partake in drugs or (if I read you correctly) sex, nor Eric’s choice to partake in whatever activities he partakes in, nor Kubby’s choice to save his life by smoking pot or Stanhope’s choice of hedonistic activities should be held against any of you.

    Taken seriously? By whom? Yes, there are some people who would not take Kubby or Stanhope seriously for some such foolish reason, and some (like, I guess, Eric) who might hold YOUR (opposite) lifestyle choices against you. Others will support Stanhope or Kubby *because* of their lifestyle, others yet don’t care either way but will listen to what they have to say about the issues.

    But neither prudes nor hedonists are any overwhelming concensus. You can’t please everybody, any position you take will piss someone off.

    Do you have to have zero income to advocate getting rid of the income tax?

  147. I said I don’t believe in “getting laid,” or looking at sex as a animalistic act with no meaning or substance. There is a difference.

    I mean taken seriously by the average voter, few of whom would like to have a drug user in the White House. Seriously, one must face the polical reality that it is completely taboo.

    My parents may be the very definition of centrist, and I told them about Stanhope and they were immediately turned off. I tried to tell them that he was a smart guy obviously, but the fact that he built his name on getting drunk college girls to flash their boobs on camera and is a recreational drug user automatically shut down them caring about any reasonable political stances he might have.

    That was when I decided that if Stanhope is nominated, I’m leaving the LP. Maybe he’ll be the most successful candidate yet, but I would rather not waste my time and effort on a party seen by most as a joke. Running a misogynist drug user is not a way to be taken seriously.

  148. Nick & Paulie,

    My first choice is Ed Thompson. He’s even said that he’d consider a run.

    Ed is the consumate “Blue Collar Libertarian.” Plus, he has real world experience as a Mayor and City Councilman. Plus, he’s got a schtick that would appeal to the mainstream media, being a brother of Tommy Thompson.

    I’d much prefer Thompson over even Doug Stanhope.

    But if it comes down to Steve Kubby, George Phillies, and Stanhope, I’ll definitely back the latter.

  149. The average voter won’t take the LP seriously. However, a niche vote could well expand its current totals.

    Secondly, it was known that Clinton and Shrub were drug users before they were elected; Clinton actually admitted to it, although in a weaselish fashion.

  150. Stanhope and Kubby are admitted drug users while they are campaigning. There’s a difference. I understand Kubby is using weed for medical reasons (although I’m not so sure about the peyote).

    I seriously question how the LP can ever be taken seriously when almost the entire ExComm and many of the delegates of one particular state were sitting in a hotel room at a state convention last year passing around joints. Not to mention that this was a complete violation of the hotel owners’ rights, how can such actions ever help a party get taken seriously? If we are advocating legalizing weed, fine, but when we just look like a bunch of stoners, the impression is – ok…duh, they’re just stoners who don’t want to get in trouble. Not a very strong selling point.

    I think the LP should actually encourage its serious candidates, leaders and outspoken members not to partake in any unnecessary illegal activities, even though we disagree with the law. Such restraint would merit voter respect.

  151. Nick,
    I happened to be in Vegas last week losing my shirt. On one justification of losing trip up to our room, we saw Wynn Hotel’s dogs making the bomb rounds. As dog people, my husband and I asked after the dog and played with him for a sec. It was there that I learned that dogs are trained to test for drugs or explosives- not both. Good thing, because even the handler said that drugs would be found all over.
    Point: I do not think that a hotel owner’s rights are violated for using the room as you wish. When you rent space, it is yours for the time specified. This, mind you, is a personal opinion-not a legal one. In some states, sodomy is against the law. That alone would make many criminals of some people and according to your logic, violate the rights of hotel owners.

  152. Michelle, I’m sorry. That’s not true at all. Renting a space does not mean that you own the space, even temporarily. It is still the hotel owners’ property, and the hotel owner runs the risk of not only increased liability but getting in trouble with the law if they look the other way. Furthermore, renting a room is an implied contract, and thus breaking the law in a room is a violation of contract.

    Not only is this hypocritical to everything the LP supposedly stands for morally, but it runs the risk of becoming a very embarassing and damaging situation. The entire ExComm of a state and many delegates getting arrested for possession of marijuana in a hotel room would not only be a great way to enable the mainstream media to make us look like kooks, but would be a terrible first impression for those who know little about us or our policies.

    Whose going to take the party and its drug legalization advocacy seriously after that? Of course druggies want drugs to be legal, right?

  153. I did not mean that you owned the room, but I think that you have some degree of privacy and the hotel owner has some degree of protection from any illegal act a tenant has committed.

  154. I think it is a non-issue that a delegate smoked pot in his room. Would you complain if he had sex that wasn’t allowed? Check out http://www.sodomylaws.org/usa/usa.htm

    Anil and I may break laws in some hotel rooms that have nothing to do with drugs, and we are a happily married couple. In Texas, vibrators are illegal. Would you complain if a woman traveling on business used one and therefore broke the law and violated the hotel owner’s rights?

  155. Michelle, you should understand that this was not a very private act. This was about thirty people in one hotel room being relatively loud, drunk and stoned. Even if it were legal, etc. I don’t think it was very fair to the others in the area who had paid good money for their rooms to be forced to listened to a loud libertarian party.

    There’s also a difference in the fact that sodomy laws are generally not enforceable, and only people who will never, ever be libertarians would care if you violated sodomy laws with your husband in private. You have to see it from a PR standpoint – an entire state party leadership arrested for weed possession would risk discrediting the party, further excuse for everyone not to take us seriously.

    Also a private sexual act is less likely to damage a room. The smell of marijuana lingering in a room may not be a welcome surprise for the next guests.

    On so many levels, it’s a violation of libertarian principles and a bad idea for a political party.

  156. On another trip to Vegas, we were whipped and went to bed early. (3am) The bachlorette party next door had other plans. I calmly called the hotel operator and asked that she handle the situation. The noise stopped 20 minutes later. I am certain that the same would have been true with the libertarian partying. I do not smoke pot. I never really liked it. It does have a distict smell, but it is not one that would damage a room. I have smelled perfumes that are worse.
    Sodomy laws were enforced in TX very recently- results here.
    And I see nothing hypocritical about living as you say you live. A bunch of “druggies” participating in the political process kind of put the fried egg brain myth to bed don’t you think?

  157. Nick,

    your position is predicated on the idea that the vast majority of people don’t use drugs. If you are going to use surveys to back such a position up, you should be aware that drug use is vastly under-reported, as many people don’t like to admit to it – especially to people they perceive or suspect to be government agents.

    There are lots of people who DO use drugs, especially marijuana, and they represent a niche vote which is far larger than the LP currently gets. What’s wrong with reaching out to this voting bloc?

    Furthermore, there are plenty of people who personally do not use drugs, but are not so stupid as to think “aha! they use drugs so the only reason they want to legalize them is so they don’t get in trouble!” (Kubby, of course, can address this particular “objection” better than most).

    Corollary: should only non-gun owners be allowed to advocate second Amendment rights?

    Should only povertarians be allowed to speak out against taxes?

  158. “the idea that the vast majority of people don’t use drugs.”

    The vast majority of serious political candidates don’t use illegal drugs. The vast majority of voters wouldn’t want an active drug user in the White House. Take a scientific poll and I guarantee you’ll get this feedback.

    “they represent a niche vote”

    Of course. But the LP itself has become such a niche-oriented party that we can never grow. If you want to grow, you need to target and appeal to everyone. Diversity is a virtue.

    “Kubby, of course, can address this particular “objection” better than most”

    I’m still wondering if the peyote was for medical use, too.

    “povertarians…non-gun owners”

    Obviously not. But a non-gun owner talking to a liberal gun hater will be able to reach them easier. A povertarian talking to a tax-and-spend liberal will be able to reach them easier. By not being directly self-interested in the outcome, you start off on a more acceptable foot to those who disagree with the outcome.

  159. “The noise stopped 20 minutes later. I am certain that the same would have been true with the libertarian partying.”

    Or the hotel assistant might have smelled the weed, called the cops and the headlines the next day blare “Libertarian Party state leaders arrested for marijuana possession at state convention.” Maybe there is no such thing as bad publicity, but to the normal person and especially a person who has never heard of the LP before, that will not leave a good taste in their mouths about the LP.

  160. “The vast majority of serious political candidates don’t use illegal drugs.”

    How do you know? A lot of them lie about it.

    “The vast majority of voters wouldn’t want an active drug user in the White House. Take a scientific poll and I guarantee you’ll get this feedback.”

    I don’t have to take a poll. Clinton was a (weaselishly) admitted ex-drug user at the time he was elected. Bush Jr. has refused comment, but was widely reported to have been a cokehead. Pot smoking was pretty common in the Carter white house? So what?

    Additionally….even if you are right and a vast majority would reject any illegal drug user just for that reason alone, it still leaves plenty of room to excite and activate a larger group of voters than vote for the LP at present.

    If you really think the LP can actually win the presidency in 2008 or come anywhere close, you are the one who is not being pragmatic.

  161. Of course. But the LP itself has become such a niche-oriented party that we can never grow.

    It’s failed to even become a niche-oriented party. There’s plenty of room to grow with niche marketing.

    If you want to grow, you need to target and appeal to everyone. Diversity is a virtue.

    I agree, diversity is a virtue. However, it’s not the ONLY virtue. It’s impossible to appeal to everyone, and especially illogical for a third party.

    I’m still wondering if the peyote was for medical use, too.

    It was a dried up button for research on a book.

    Also, why is it inconceivable that psychedelics can be for medical use? We can get into that if you wish, too.

    Obviously not. But a non-gun owner talking to a liberal gun hater will be able to reach them easier. A povertarian talking to a tax-and-spend liberal will be able to reach them easier.

    However, that doesn’t mean we can’t run gun owners or rich people, or drug users for that matter.

  162. “A lot of them lie about it.”

    And they go down in flames when discovered.

    “Clinton…Bush Jr…”

    Ex-drug users. “Active” is the operative word.

    “to excite and activate a larger group of voters than vote for the LP at present.”

    So they’ll vote LP BECAUSE the candidate uses drugs? Surely there are better niches than people that unlogical.

    “It’s failed to even become a niche-oriented party.”

    The LP has always been much more niche-oriented than big tent. That’s why we LRCers want to try something different.

    “it’s not the ONLY virtue.”

    I never said it was.

    “dried up button for research on a book.”

    And Pete Townshend’s child porno was “research,” too. Right.

    “doesn’t mean we can’t run gun owners or rich people, or drug users”

    Being a gun owner or rich person is not illegal, not controversial and won’t presuppose turning off a majority of voters. The analogy is weak. We shouldn’t run drug users for the same reason we shouldn’t take an abortion stance.

  163. “And they go down in flames when discovered.”

    Most of the time they’re not discovered.

    “Ex-drug users”

    Don’t be so sure.

    As for doing something “illegal” – nothing wrong with civil disobedience. Unjust “laws” deserve to be broken.

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