Ron Paul could lead a new libertarian/progressive coalition

 

Amid the current political malaise, many have been speculating that a viable third party will rear its head in 2012. According to Ralph Nader, this “dark horse” might not be a new party at all but a coalition of existing lawmakers. What he foresees is a new dynamic in American politics, one where libertarian-conservatives unite with progressive-liberals on key issues, checking the power of the current corporatist regime that exists in DC. 

Appearing on Wednesday’s Freedom Watch w/Judge Napolitano, Nader reminded viewers that, “authentic Tea-partiers hail from the conservative-libertarian wing of the Republican party that has been so disrespected and corporatized by the likes of Bush and Cheney.” In truth, Ron Paul is the father of the Tea Party movement. His followers have staged Federal Reserve and anti-bailout protests with an 18th century motif long before their activities were co-opted by Fox News and Palin supporters.  

According to Nader, it will be the true progenitors of the Tea Party movement, the Paul-ites, that will forge strong ties with progressives and liberals on common denominator issues such as auditing the Federal Reserve, reducing military spending, and ending corporate welfare. “They’re gonna go after all these bloated, corporate welfare subsidies, handouts, giveaways, bailouts,” says Nader.

Ful column by Chris Hinvub of the California Independent Voters Network @ http://caivn.org/article/2011/01/15/ron-paul-could-lead-new-libertarianprogressive-coalition#

62 thoughts on “Ron Paul could lead a new libertarian/progressive coalition

  1. Steve

    Paul from the right, along with Nader on the left, opened a lot of eyes to the possibility of such a coalition. But the question may be if Gary Johnson could fill the role if Paul doesn’t run. Here’s modest suggestion: with no credible primary challenge to Obama yet materializing, Nader and other progressive leaders should back Johnson in the GOP primary. If Johnson is defeated for the nomination, Nader seeks the LP nomination to carry on the coalition.

    There’s probably several problems with that idea that will prevent it from ever happening, and I’m not sure I’d like it if it did. Oh for a parliamentary system in America :-)!

  2. FYI, not neccessarily an unbridled endorsement! [Lake]

    hype, hype, hype?

    stevie: oh for an ameican parliament, the metric system, the death of the Federal Reserve, the death of the electoral college, a REAL Department of Defense, the end of the American Empire, and a ‘Map and Stripes’ with the contiguous 48 states on a field of blue and then 13 stripes ………..

  3. paulie

    @1

    Hopefully, candidates in tune with this coalition will run in all parties and as independents, and include a primary challenge or several to Obama that get noticed.

  4. paulie

    I’m not just for impeaching Democrats only. Since we missed the chance to impeach shrub, any call for impeaching Obama that does not include war crimes trials for the Bush-Cheney gang smacks of Republican partisanship.

  5. paulie

    Of course, that’s from a Libertarian stance, since we officially supported impeaching Clinton but not either Bush.

    The Green, Socialist and other parties could call for a stand alone Obama impeachment without having a similar credibility problem.

  6. Robert Milnes

    Guess I have to correct your plural leaps of illogic.
    There will be no primary challenge to Obama. In the least various pinheads would call such person a racist-& few can stand to be piled on.
    Ron Paul is a counterrevolutuionary. Any backing by progressives of Ron Paul would be counterproductive.
    A third party try would be superfluous & counterproductive to progressives if by progressives. But fools like Cavlan might try it anyway.
    Gary Johnson is also a rightist of some sort.

  7. Thomas M. Sipos

    I don’t know what Milnes means about Paul being a counterrevolutionary, but whatever Paul is, is good.

    A Paul/Nader thicket would be great, though both men are getting up there in years.

    Gravel is a great guy, but also into his 80s. Perhaps his peacenik daughter, Lynne Moiser, would care to run: http://libertarianpeacenik.blogspot.com/2008/05/last-minute-anti-ruwart-lies-on.html

    Karen Kwiatkowski also remains an attractive candidate. As a former Pentagon officer, she brings much patriotic color and gravitas to her antiwar views.

  8. Matthew

    I’ve got a great idea. ROBERT MILNES should run! MILNES 2012! MILNES 2012! MILNES 2012!

  9. Robert Milnes

    Steve Gordon has been long discredited as a dixiecrat conservative. You people need to dump the baggage.
    Sipos, you need to learn politics 101-counterrevolution/aries. If you are a peacenik, that is, they are, your primary opposition. & they are chasmeleons. Witness Ron Paul getting away with calling himself a libertarian. What would his career have been if he called himself a counterrevolutionary, nationalist, dixiecrat conservative? Toilet!

  10. Robert Milnes

    paulie, Gordon passing out anti Ruwart material for the Barr campaign makes perfect sense. Ruwart was probably targeted years before.
    & Milnes/Ruwart would be one of the best fusion tickets possible. As might Milnes/Kwiatkowski-if she withdraws endorsement of Ron Paul & quits Lew Rockwell.

  11. Robert Milnes

    I tried to endorse Gravel in 2008. & Gravel/Ruwart fusion ticket. But as paulie was loling me Skyler was patronizing me & evidently everybody was advising Ruwart against me.
    Way to go-I mean way to lose!

  12. Sane LP member

    The LP seems to be the largest alternative party at present, WITH some consistent name recognition. It is ripe for a “big name” to come in and be the 2012 nominee.

    What are the options:
    Big name with money runs as an independent
    Run with the R’s or D’s and fight their internal machine.
    Create a new 3rd party
    Or, just take the nomination with an existing 3rd party.

    Creating a new 3rd party seems to be the most difficult.
    Someone like Ross Perot could just run with their money and not need an existing political party, yet structure is needed in each state. So in effect, state organizations (parties) would need to be built.
    That takes me back to just moving into an existing 3rd party.
    If someone wants to come in from the “cold” and join a third party like the LP, they best get started by Summer of 2011. Otherwise, the “old guard” of the LP might resist. Remember that it took multiple rounds of voting for Bob Barr to get the LP nomination in 2008– it was no slam dunk.

  13. Robert Capozzi

    I’d note that Nader’s not talking about a candidacy, but rather a coalition in Congress and supporters.

    On the substance, I’d say Nader’s engaging in wishful thinking. He’s correct that a L/progressive coalition is forming up on some issues, but it appears small and not especially influential on policy. A few fiery C-Span speeches, a rally here and there, and blog whining is all I’m seeing so far. Actual change seems elusive. Making actual change is not an easy matter, but it require a paradigm shift. Perhaps the power-drunk corporatists need to hit bottom before they wake up and mend their ways. Dunno. Stay tuned.

  14. Robert Capozzi

    sane22: Otherwise, the “old guard” of the LP might resist.

    me: What makes you think that an early start will mollify the old guard? Short of a being stripped naked and prostrating oneself while bearing witness to THE most extreme, literalistic interpretations of the NAP, my sense is the old guard mostly enjoy sniping for sniping’s sake. This is the nature of absolutism, near as I can tell. Baby step measures won’t do…respect for the age of majority, working toward limiting the government to the Constitution, unwinding foreign wars, etc…these would not satisfy the old guard. This is a “namby pamby” program, unworthy of the L brand, say old guardists, is my sense.

    If a Gary Johnson came along, you can bet big money that the old guard would find SOMETHING to relentlessly attack him for. They might like an early conversion, for it would give them more time to snipe!

  15. paulie

    22, 24

    Say a big name did come along. How far do you want to bend?

    Nader? Murkowski? Giuliani? Romney? Palin? Feingold? Trump? Hulk Hogan?

    Perhaps you want to draw the line somewhere; a “name point” trades off an ideology point or something…if so, how do you calculate that?

    Or, do you want to just say give us a big name…any big name…we don’t care what they stand for, we’ll find some way to find something they agree with us on?

    In any case, of the options in 22, “create a new third party,” is already happening.

    It’s called Americans Elect. It was previously known as Unity 08 and Unity 12, but their plans were thwarted by the courts; now that the courts have cleared the way, they have the backing of a multimillionaire and the likely backing of a billionaire, have corporate status in every state, have millions of dollars already in the bank and have gathered thousands of signatures in several states with credible plans to get on the ballot in every state. And that;s before the big public rollout, which was supposed to have been some time this month but may or may not have been pushed back to next month.

    Several things about Americans Elect:

    1. They say they are not trying to create a permanent party, just a vehicle for a presidential ticket this year. But, in states where they have the option of getting a presidential ticket on with fewer signatures, they are going for more signatures and full party status.

    2. They say they want a centrist ticket, but also that they will have an internet primary where everyone who registers with them can vote for whoever they want. No word on what happens if the people who participate pick a non-centrist ticket.

    It’s possible that an Americans Elect runner-up could be interested in the LP as a consolation price. If so, my question reverts to the above: is there some point at which you would also say no (ie function as the “old guard” that you describe), or is it come one, come all?

  16. paulie

    I’d say Nader’s engaging in wishful thinking. He’s correct that a L/progressive coalition is forming up on some issues, but it appears small and not especially influential on policy.

    How influential could it be at this point? It’s barely getting started.

  17. Robert Capozzi

    p26, I’d say the coalition has been around for decades, although it undulates. It’s getting somewhat stronger in recent years is my sense. But, unless there are more real-change-oriented in office, it’s mostly heat, not light. Corporatist MCs still wildly outnumber principled ones is again my sense.

    Hope I’m incorrect.

  18. paulie

    Maybe things are starting to gel more as the Democrats and Republicans in power keep see-sawing down in an authoritarian direction.

    After all, Obama didn’t end the wars or restore civil liberties that were damaged under W (quite the opposite), and forcing individuals to buy insurance from big corporations under penalty of law was not the health care reform most progressives had in mind. On the other side, Republicans have certainly not delivered on cutting government the times they have been in power, nor the “humble foreign policy” they talked about in 2000.

    So, maybe we are starting to reach a critical mass where more people coming from both the right and the left sees the need for such an alliance, as they are getting more and more of the opposite from both parties in power.

    Again, not anything new, but it does seem to be accelerating, and some of the foundations for cooperation have been laid recently, such as Ron Paul’s press conference with Nader, Baldwin and McKinney in 2008.

    After the new Republican congress fails to cut government once again, it may get a new batch of supporters (while others will fantasize, against all historical evidence, that they will get smaller government if they elect a Republican president in 2012).

  19. Robert Capozzi

    p28, yes, we could be in a time of gelling. I am concerned that Ls will have none of it, unless progressives become absolutist Ls. The coalition could easily degenerate into whether Social Security should be abolished or whether affirmative action should be ended.

  20. paulie

    Robert, yes, there will be people more and less willing to compromise on each side. That’s the way it usually works with coalitions.

  21. Sane LP Member

    Based on what I have read, what is the prognosis for the LP? How much time does it have left?
    Then again, look to the Reform Party, the “party of NO principles”. It went right, then left, and then out of business. There has to be some balance, not extremes.

  22. NewFederalist

    FWIW, I believe the LP will exist into perpetuity much like the Prohibition Party. I don’t believe an ideological party can succeed in the US political system.

  23. Eric Dondero

    Firstly, Ron Paul represents the left-side of the libertarian movement on foreign policy. Those of us who are Pro-Defense libertarians and antiIslamoFascism want nothing to do with the surrender-tarians on the Left.

    Secondly, the Nader people blocked us Libertarian Party petitioners in at least 3 states in 2008, from gathering signatures for Bob Barr for President. Ohio, CT, and New Hampshire. They are our enemy. Why in the bloody hell would we want anything to do with Nader and his gang of crooks?

    Thirdly, Ralph Nader? The one who single-handidly instituted mandatory seat belt laws in the entire United States? Sorry, but we Libertarians absolutely hate the Nanny-State – seat belt laws, smoking bans, taxes on beer and liquor, political correctness, ect…

  24. paulie

    Then again, look to the Reform Party, the “party of NO principles”. It went right, then left, and then out of business.

    My point exactly. And I also get the point that we don’t want to be too small and narrow focused either. So how to strike the right balance?

  25. Brian

    The only problem is that this new proto-libertarian movement within the GOP has done nothing but espouse hollow rhetoric on the issue of corporate welfare. They claim to be “free marketers” but don’t vote that way. I seriously doubt that a Tea Party congress would act in a substantial manner to end agriculture subsidies and proceed with other initiatives to move away from corporate welfare towards a truly free market society. Maybe not Paul himself, but many within this “libertarian-conservative” movement are corporatists themselves. This progressive does not see any possibility of any such alliance.

  26. Andy

    “Secondly, the Nader people blocked us Libertarian Party petitioners in at least 3 states in 2008, from gathering signatures for Bob Barr for President. Ohio, CT, and New Hampshire. They are our enemy. Why in the bloody hell would we want anything to do with Nader and his gang of crooks?”

    I never had any problems with any Nader petitioners anywhere I encountered them, however, it should be pointed out that most petitioners are mercenaries who are only out to make a buck, and this includes most of the people hired by the Ralph Nader campaign. So chances are these people were not Ralph Nader idealouges.

    I ran into people who were petitioning for Ralph Nader in Texas and Illinois back in 2004. Some of them were just mercenaries who were out to make a buck and some of them were in fact Nader idealouges, but I never once had a problem with any of them.

    We’ve discussed this before, and I’ve also discussed this with somebody from the Libertarian Party of New Hampshire, and that is that in the case of New Hampshire, a registered voter can only sign a petition for one candidate for each office. So if a person signed for Nader they could not sign for Barr and have their signature counted, and vice versa. Then when you factor in that there are limited places in which to gather signatures in New Hampshire this obviously can create problems with petitioners from different campaigns “bumping heads” at locations. The person that I spoke to in the New Hampshire LP said that the problems that happened between people circulating petitions for Barr and the people circulating petitions for Nader was more a case of poaching (as in a hunting or gold prospecting analogy) than it was of blocking. I’d say that the problems in New Hampshire were more due to the stupid laws there than they were the petitioners themselves.

  27. Andy

    “Maybe not Paul himself, but many within this ‘libertarian-conservative’ movement are corporatists themselves.”

    Ron Paul is most definitely not a corporatist, however, it is true that there are many Republicans who spout free market rhetoric but who don’t really believe in it or practice it and that many of these people are in fact corporatists.

  28. Andy

    “Ohio, CT, and New Hampshire.”

    I seem to recall from the last time we had this discussion that it was actually people doing voter registration for Acorn that he ran into in Ohio. The people who run Acorn do not like Ralph Nader because they are die hard Democrats and they see Nader as “taking votes” from Democrats. As for the Acorn workers, they are mostly just mercenaries who are out to make a buck. Acorn is known for going into areas that are known to be places where most people vote for Democrats and they register people to vote. They don’t really go out an push Democrat so much when they are registering people, but they know that statistically most of the people they register will end up voting for Democrats.

    I ran into people who were working for Acorn while I was gathering signatures for the Libertarian Party in Pennsylvania and in Kentucky and I did not have any problems with them.

  29. Andy

    “I ran into people who were petitioning for Ralph Nader in Texas and Illinois back in 2004.”

    I also ran inton Nader petitioners in Washington DC in 2004 and I did not have any problems with them there either.

  30. FYI! [Lake]

    Tish and I were Nader’s Raiders in P2004. We did not bother any Libs nor they us. Earlier we had petitioned for Lib candidates, both as Libertarians and as Independents.

  31. Thomas M. Sipos

    Capozzi: “Short of a being stripped naked and prostrating oneself while bearing witness to THE most extreme, literalistic interpretations of the NAP,”

    I don’t think the LNC is dominated by “NAP extremists.”

    It wasn’t “NAP extremists” who drove Angela Keaton off the LNC.

  32. Thomas M. Sipos

    Dondero: “Ron Paul represents the left-side of the libertarian movement on foreign policy.”

    Dondero intends this as an attack — and an attack from Dondero confirms Ron Paul’s progressive/libertarian creds.

    You listening, Milnes?

    Dondero: “Ralph Nader? The one who single-handidly instituted mandatory seat belt laws in the entire United States?”

    It’s nice that our increasing wars, rising police state, and approaching financial ruin hasn’t distracted Dondero from the real issues.

  33. paulie

    @42 He’s a single issue kind of guy:

    http://www.smallgov.org/?p=355#comment-4549

    # Eric Dondero Says:
    September 9th, 2006 at 9:44 pm

    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.


    From: Eric Dondero, INTERNET:ericdondero@yahoo.com
    To: Steve Dasbach, SteveDasbach
    Date: 4/30/01 5:04 PM
    RE: Re: [RLC-National] The LP in Crisis … again, ho hum.

    “We could deal them a fatal blow.” … Michael, Michael, Michael??? … “Could.” That is the subjunctive form of the verb “can.” … Why would you use “could.” … Please reform your comments. The proper verbage which should be utilized in this instance is “must,” as in “we must deal the Libertarian Party a fatal blow.” … We are now in a state of all-out war with the LP. Though it could be argued that we, Chuck, a couple others and I, might have provoked them. They have declared war on the Republican Party with this latest salvo. … It’s time for the weak of heart amongst us, (don’t read these following names – Phil Blumel, Paul Jacob, that guy in New Jersey who is always talking about “cooperating with LPers”), to step aside. … The bombastic corps will now lead. We need to fatally strike the LP where it hurts. They are the enemy. Much more so than the Democrats or Moderate Republicans. … Let’s kick their asses, Braveheart style!


    mms://www.harrybrowne.org/harrybrowne/05-10-29a.mp3

    mms://www.harrybrowne.org/harrybrowne/05-10-29b.mp3

    ftp://radio.harrybrowne.org:3031/05-10-29a.mp3

    ftp://radio.harrybrowne.org:3031/05-10-29b.mp3

    http://www.blogtalkradio.com/hostpage.aspx?show_id=9322

  34. spinnikerca

    Audit the Fed was a left/right fusion project or it wouldn’t have been able to overcome Watt’s attempt to supplant the provision with his own whitewashed provision in Watt’s committee. Firedoglake (or some elements) are happy to coordinate on issues of truly joint interest. I see no downside to this, since it isn’t ‘compromise’, it is an issue where our disparate interests happen to coincide. When it gets down to what we DO after seeing the information, our interests may vary, but the transparency itself is a no brainer for all of us.

    Speaking of Ruwart, why don’t we hear more about her? I am a Ron Paul supporter who never heard of him prior to the 2008 elections, and only started looking into liberty candidates after that point. I’ve tried to like Gary Johnson, but don’t. Ruwart seems more inspirational, but I don’t know all that much about her.

    Doesn’t she have a constituency?

  35. paulie

    That was from 2001 and it was a forward of a forward of something that was on the RLC email list. Dasbach may have been on the RLC email list (for example, I am on some RLC email lists), or he may have been copied on some of the responses.

  36. Robert Milnes

    If I were Ruwart, I’d be embarassed by my performance in 2008.
    Handing the vp position to Root. e.g. Now he clubs the radicals with that on his resume.
    & saying no to my suggestion she bolt the lp as my vp on btp or independent ticket.

  37. Robert Capozzi

    tms41, we were talking “old guard,” not the LNC. How the Keaton affair is relevant is way beyond my ability to unpack your oblique references.

  38. Thomas M. Sipos

    Milnes: “If I were Ruwart, I’d be embarassed by my performance in 2008.”

    Yet you’re proud of your performance in 2008? You must be, since you’re apparently running again for 2010.

    As for Capozzi @ 52, you implied that this “old guard” had power within the LP. The LNC had the power in 2008. They successfully pushed Barr through, and got their pick for vp.

    If you meant some other group, please be more specific in defining “old guard.” That vague phrase can mean anyone — purist, radical, reformer, moderate — ALL those groups have been around from the LP’s start, so ALL of them are “old guard.”

  39. Steven R Linnabary

    Those of us who are Pro-Defense libertarians and antiIslamoFascism want nothing to do with the surrender-tarians…

    lol

    So this means you support Obama and/or his policies?

    PEACE

  40. Jill Pyeatt

    Thanks for the links on Eric Dondero’s history, paulie.

    Just be cause he thinks and says he’s a Libertarian doesn’t make him one.

  41. Robert Milnes

    Sipos, I did the best I could in 2008. I had the winning ideas but little support. Unfortunately one can’t do much with a lot of lols. Ruwart, on the other hand, had a lot of support but bad advice.,& acted like a loser.

  42. Robert Capozzi

    tms53: …you implied that this “old guard” had power within the LP. The LNC had the power in 2008. They successfully pushed Barr through, and got their pick for vp.

    me: “Old guard” isn’t my term. It was used @ 22, where “Sane” said: ” Otherwise, the “old guard” of the LP might resist. Remember that it took multiple rounds of voting for Bob Barr to get the LP nomination in 2008– it was no slam dunk.”

    I think of the old guard as NAP absolutists, or those who object to Nolan Chart Ls from being our candidate. Someone of some note and gravity receives redoubled resistance from reactionaries.

  43. Robert Milnes

    “…a coalition of existing lawmakewrs.”
    This is lame and too little too late. Ron Paul & Bernie Sanders prodded by Ralph Nader could have been tried over a decade ago. Anything super minority of one that Paul & Sanders try legislatively will face full opposition & go nowhere.
    We need to vote in a LOT of legislators-Libs & Greens/left progressives simultaneously voting out a LOT ofdems & reps. THEN such things can get done.

  44. HumbleTravis

    Ron Paul and Ralph Nader have both given positive reviews to a new book titled ComeHomeAmerica.us. The book is about the history and possible future of left-right alliances opposing empire. It is edited by Paul Buhle, Bill Kauffman, George O’Neill, Jr., and Kevin Zeese. It is published by Titan and the book’s title also works as a URL.

  45. Thomas M. Sipos

    Capozzi: “I think of the old guard as NAP absolutists, or those who object to Nolan Chart Ls from being our candidate.”

    So by “old guard,” you mean relative purists? Why them? All factions have always been a part of the LP, from the start.

    (Although Dondero has claimed that “pro-defense” types were the original LP members, hence, the “old guard.”)

    Capozzi: “Someone of some note and gravity receives redoubled resistance from reactionaries.”

    Reactionaries? Who do you mean? You mean pro-war rights like Root? Or antiwar rightists like Ron Paul? (Milnes’s example of a reactionary). Or NAP purists? Or left-wing antiwar minarchists?

    I don’t know what you mean by an LP “reactionary.” It’s like you just randomly tossed out that term.

  46. Robert Capozzi

    tms: So by “old guard,” you mean relative purists? Why them?

    me: No, I can’t work with the term “relative purists.” My sense is that NAP Absolutists would be the most resistant to an pol joining the LP with the intent of gaining the prez nomination. That was the case with Barr. My sense is the SCM crew, for ex., were Root supporters, but they didn’t seem to have an aneurysm over Barr.

    tms: Reactionaries? Who do you mean?

    me: In this context, a L reactionary is someone who has a very rigid interpretation and application of the NAP. For me, the closed-minded, the-meaning-of-the-NAP-is-settled-law, you either buy into the plumb line or you are not a “real” L…that’s reactionary.

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