Coverage of LNC meeting 12/14-15/13

I’m here in Dallas for LNC meeting and have laptop. Not sure if there will be wifi in meeting room though. If anyone here has hotspot or phone tether internet they can lend for coverage purposes please let me know in person or at 415-690-6352 (although it is possible cell phone service won’t be working in the meeting room either – won’t know til I get there). Please do not reply by email or web/FB comment since if I can get on email/web/FB in the meeting room this will therefore not be an issue. If anyone else besides LNC members can help with videotaping, liveblogging, livestreaming if we can get a connection etc please also let me know. For that matter LNC members too if you are really good at multitasking, but only if it doesn’t distract you from the meeting itself (I’m not good enough at multistasking for that, so if I am at the table at any point, I will not be able to help with coverage during those times no matter what kind of internet connection we get).

In the event that I am not able to get online in the meeting, if other people can get online with their phones only, I would appraciate if they can use the comments here to liveblog the meeting.

As a last resort, if none of that happens, I will take hand written notes and do my best to update you all later between that and what I can remember, and will try to get others to do same.

UPDATE: Meeting room has changed yet again:

Robert Kraus

to lnc-discuss

Please note the meeting is now in the Maverick Room on the ground level across from the ballroom.

​​​​​Live Free!

Robert

Robert S. Kraus – Dir of Operations
Operations@LP.org

528 thoughts on “Coverage of LNC meeting 12/14-15/13

  1. paulie Post author

    I am able to be on using Robert Kraus’ mifi. However, it can only support 5 users at a time. If anyone would like the connection for reporting here to be more reliable, conference room wifi is available for $50/user from the hotel.

  2. paulie Post author

    First order of business, deciding between Johnson and Mattson on Secretary pro tem. Blau is at a wedding elsewhere in Texas. Wrights is also not here, he is at home, also in Texas, for personal reasons.

  3. paulie Post author

    Public comments. Pat Dixon welcomes LNC to Texas. LP is running candidates in all statewide races, all federal races, all legislative that are on ballot, all but one board of education..

    174 candidates (update from 168 mentioned in press release yesterday).. plugging state convention. It will be at a convention center in Temple. Believes it will be biggest state convention ever.

    Dixon will not run for state chair again after 10 years as chair. 3 statewide races are 2-way virtually guaranteeing ballot retention.

  4. paulie Post author

    Starr thanks LNC members for attending and for the work on the committee. Mentions he was here last week.
    Starchild proposes to move public comments later to give more observers a chance to show up first. Fails for lack of a second.

  5. paulie Post author

    Amended agenda adopted. I did not follow this closely.

    Conflict of interest report. Redpath, Lark, Olsen, Starchild, Cloud, Pojunis, Hagan, Neale report changes.

  6. paulie Post author

    I emailed this to IPR. Can’t remember if it got posted. I can post it if it hasn’t been posted already, if someone can let me know whether it got poster earlier.

  7. paulie Post author

    Discussion of whether wiki of affiliate support information should be public. No consent or action.

    Treasurers report. Did we post this as article yet? I believe I sent it also.

  8. paulie Post author

    Now Secretary’s report. Pretty sure Jill posted that but if someone an find the link so I can keep typing away in this tab instead of trying to look for it at the same time.

  9. paulie Post author

    LNC will communicate with Secretary Blau to get draft minutes public rather than getting formatting perfect first.

  10. paulie Post author

    Discussion of possible wiki with tight control of who can edit for improving distributin of minutes in the future.

  11. paulie Post author

    Comment from me (o here – I am not at the table and would have to be asked to be recognized withou objection….

    This would be less of a problem if the party’s official video would get posted on the web instead of being destroyed or kept only for the secretary’s use.

  12. George Phillies

    Paulie I could not find a Treasurer’s report with a search here, and the decidedly not all-seeing eye of Liberty for America seems not to have found one either. I tried searches on “Hagan” and “Treasurer” but none of those articles were right.

  13. paulie Post author

    Not finding it in my email either. I thought there was one but maybe I had it confused with the draft budget and end of month financials. Don’t think I would have erased it except maybe by accident.

  14. George Phillies

    Here is the budget report and various sniping on the Audit Report. I do not see a Treasurer’s report.

    http://www.independentpoliticalreport.com/2013/11/updates-on-libertarian-national-committee-bylaws-and-platform-committees-budget-and-audit/

    It is interesting to note that if Z is an elected politician, and if Z gives a no-bid contract to her ex-boyfriend, some people view there as being cause for suspicion or at least cause for critique of shady dealings. All in favor of: “Fortunately we Libertarians know that all people are morally pure and totally honest, so we would not dream of being concerned about anything here.” clap loudly.

    Here is the Secretary’s Report

    http://www.independentpoliticalreport.com/2013/12/libertarian-national-committee-secretarys-report-for-december-7-8-2013/

  15. Starchild

    Paulie writes, “Customary Stachild/Neale back and forth sniping.”

    Come on Paulie, at least tell people what I was asking / trying to find out!

  16. paulie Post author

    Staff Operational Report
    Prior to LNC meeting scheduled for December 7, 2013.
    Submitted November 22, 2013, by Wes Benedict, Executive Director
    Section 4.01 of the Policy Manual includes:
    o Monthly, provide a Membership Report
    o Monthly, a Financial Report to the LNC (upon approval by the Treasurer).
    o Two weeks prior to a scheduled LNC meeting, provide an Operational Report to
    include input from key staff members and a summary of staff personnel changes.
    o At the LNC meeting following a general election, make a best effort to provide a
    summary of all elected Party officeholders.
    Monthly membership reports and financial reports have been submitted to the LNC separately
    from this report.
    Staff Personnel Changes
    Carla Howell moved from the Executive Director position to Political Director. Wes Benedict
    was hired as Executive Director.
    Summary of all elected Party officeholders
    Bob Johnston maintains the “Elected Officials” list and it’s posted online at
    http://www.lp.org/candidates/elected-officials. Nationwide, there are 156 Libertarians holding
    elected offices: 45 partisan offices, and 111 nonpartisan offices.
    Other items
    ? Staff created a wiki with staff procedures. A wiki for affiliates and candidates is in the
    works.
    ? A ballot access contract was submitted to members of the Ballot Access Committee.
    ? Staff investigated the possibility of moving our Black Baud Raiser’s Edge software from
    our own servers at LPHQ to servers maintained by Black Baud. Status – pending I.T.
    committee member negotiations.
    ? Staff created the Legal Offense fund: http://www.lp.org/legal
    Political Director Activities
    ? Supporting, recruiting, training candidates – 2013, 2014
    ? Starting to revamp candidate support materials
    ? Networking with 4th Amendment groups and helped organize, book speakers for rally in
    DC; Fourth Amendment video
    ? August House Letter
    ? Media interviews
    ? Miscellaneous help with fund-raising, wikis
    ? Posting of facebook memes to LP.org
    A list of publications follow.Email Transmissions, Pledge News, LP News
    Sent 30-Jun-13 through 21-Nov-13
    Blog & Email Libertarians speaking at Restore the Fourth protests on July 4 7/1/2013
    Email
    Blog & Email Celebrate your independence with a gift to the Libertarian Party
    Snowden should be rewarded as a hero, say LP poll respondents 7/3/2013
    7/5/2013
    Pledge News 1307 PL July Ple 7/18/2013
    NewsRelease R’s refuse to end Obamacare 7/22/2013
    Email Republicans refuse to end Obamacare now … and more LP news Email
    Pledge News Republicans refuse to end Obamacare now
    1308 PL August Ple 7/22/2013
    7/22/2013
    NewsRelease Libertarian Party calls for restoring the Fourth Amendment 8/19/2013
    NewsRelease Drone strikes in Yemen make US government most dangerous terrorist 8/21/2013
    Email
    Email LP opposes US intervention in Syria and more LP news
    Please donate to LP general fund 8/30/2013
    9/4/2013
    Email LP Monday Message: See Sarvis Run LP NEWS V43 Issue III 2013 Sept LP News 9/13/2013
    Email LP Monday Message: Elected Libertarian List 9/16/2013
    Pledge News
    Blog & Email 1309 PL Sept Ple
    LP Monday Message: How to stop Obamacare? 9/18/2013
    9/23/2013
    Blog & Email Donate for appeal to supreme court 9/25/2013
    Email Wes’ email Tuesday on Legal fund to take MI lawsuit to Supremes 9/25/2013
    NewsRelease Press release – govt “shutdown” Email
    Blog & Email Monday Message
    Monday Message: FB fans blow past 400,000 9/26/2013
    9/30/2013
    Blog & Email Announce 4th Rally Oct 26 10/1/2013
    Email Compiled email w/ video and link, etc. 10/4/2013
    Blog & Email
    Blog & Email Monday Message: World War II Memorial Poll
    Monday Message: All-time interest in 3rd party 10/7/2013
    10/14/2013
    Pledge News 1310 PL Oct Ple 10/15/2013
    NewsRelease LP Chair Geoff Neale to addres Euro libertarians in Spain 10/16/2013
    Blog & Email Please donate-not for Spain, Russia tour 10/17/2013
    NewsRelease
    Email Only 1 way to stop R’s and D’s reckless overspending: vote L
    LP on R Sellout; Neale at CPAC; 4th amendment rally in DC 10/17/2013
    10/18/2013
    NewsRelease Neale to speak in Russia press release 10/29/2013
    Email Poll: when do you predict war on weed will end? 10/30/2013
    Thursday, November 21, 2013
    8/17/2013
    9/9/2013
    9/30/2013
    Page 1 of 2Email Transmissions, Pledge News, LP News
    Sent 30-Jun-13 through 21-Nov-13
    Email Libertarians give voters option to shrink big government 11/4/2013
    NewsRelease
    NewsRelease candidates up for eleation Tuesday
    L’s give voters option to shrink Big Government, advance liberty on Nov. 5 11/4/2013
    11/4/2013
    Email Virginia Libertarian for governor vote total shows LP rising 11/6/2013
    NewsRelease Virginia Libertarian for governor vote total shows LP rising 11/6/2013
    Email With Libertarian Sarvis — mission accomplished NewsRelease
    NewsRelease Wes’ press releaes on Booster PAC donations to Sarvis
    With Libertarian Sarvis — mission accomplished 11/7/2013
    11/7/2013
    Email compiled email – vote totals, 3 recent blogs Blog & Email LP Monday Message: Veterans Day 11/11/2013
    Email
    Pledge News Building fund pitch emails
    1311 PL Nov Ple 11/15/2013
    11/18/2013
    Blog & Email Monday Message: rise of Libertarians? Overby 11/18/2013
    Blog & Email Ballot fund update & Lucas Overby 11/19/2013
    Thursday, November 21, 2013
    11/7/2013
    11/8/2013
    Page 2 of 2Web Content Created
    30-Jun-13
    thru
    21-Nov-13
    Content (normally) cross-posted to Facebook and Twitter
    Type
    Topic
    Date
    Blog & Email Libertarians speaking at Restore the Fourth protests on July 4 7/1/2013
    Blog
    Libertarian Party: Defending the Fourth Amendment for 42 yea
    Blog & Email Snowden should be rewarded as a hero, say LP poll respondent 7/3/2013
    7/5/2013
    Blog Ken Kaplan aims to phase out income tax in NJ governor race 7/16/2013
    Web Content End DHS picture with Janet Napolitano 7/17/2013
    Blog
    NewsRelease Libertarian candidate for VA governor Robert Sarvis beats mar
    R’s refuse to end Obamacare 7/18/2013
    7/22/2013
    Blog Will record low approval for Ds and Rs mean more L votes? 7/29/2013
    Web Content Tax holiday graphic 8/1/2013
    Blog MI candidate michael Brennan hopes to slash millions 8/3/2013
    Blog
    Blog FL Wylie polling at 9%
    Alex Thornton nominated for SC state senate 8/8/2013
    8/10/2013
    Blog Fox covers Richard Sarvis 8/12/2013
    Blog LP response to question if Obama’s vacation is too extravagant 8/15/2013
    NewsRelease
    Video Libertarian Party calls for restoring the Fourth Amendment
    LP on restoring fourth amendment 8/19/2013
    8/19/2013
    NewsRelease Drone strikes in Yemen make US government most dangerous 8/21/2013
    Blog NY LP has 8 candidates in NYC in November 8/28/2013
    Blog Wes Benedict returns as exec. Director; Howell becomes politi 8/30/2013
    Blog
    Blog CT L aims to boldly downsize city govt backed by slate of LP
    Washington Times column features LP call to stay out of Syria 9/5/2013
    9/6/2013
    Blog Former R joins LP to run for Congress 9/12/2013
    Blog The Libertarian Party Remembers Admiral Michael C. Colley 9/13/2013
    Blog June issue of LP news now available online 9/17/2013
    Video
    Sarvis Marriage Equality
    Blog & Email LP Monday Message: How to stop Obamacare? 9/20/2013
    9/23/2013
    Blog & Email Donate for appeal to supreme court 9/25/2013
    NewsRelease 9/28/2013
    Press release – govt “shutdown”
    Blog & Email Monday Message: FB fans blow past 400,000
    Blog & Email Announce 4th Rally Oct 26 9/30/2013
    10/3/2013
    Blog Sarvis polling at 12.7% reveals Zogby poll 10/2/2013
    Blog Rally to protest mass surveillance in DC will feature Gary John 10/3/2013
    Blog Carla Howell on RT (Russia Today) 10/4/2013
    Thursday, November 21, 2013
    Page 1 of 2Web Content Created
    30-Jun-13
    thru
    21-Nov-13
    Content (normally) cross-posted to Facebook and Twitter
    Type
    Topic
    Date
    Blog & Email Monday Message: World War II Memorial Poll 10/7/2013
    Blog
    Geoff Neale makes moral case for LP at CPAC
    Blog & Email Monday Message: All-time interest in 3rd party 10/11/2013
    10/14/2013
    NewsRelease LP Chair Geoff Neale to addres Euro libertarians in Spain 10/16/2013
    Blog Laura Delhomme wants to end state income tax, prohibitions o 10/16/2013
    Blog & Email Please donate-not for Spain, Russia tour
    NewsRelease Only 1 way to stop R’s and D’s reckless overspending: vote L 10/17/2013
    10/17/2013
    Blog VA gov debate organizers reconsider inclusion of Sarvis 10/20/2013
    Blog Rally reminder 10/25/2013
    Video GJ at SWU rally 10-26-13 10/28/2013
    Blog
    NewsRelease Poll: Marijuana
    Neale to speak in Russia press release 10/29/2013
    10/29/2013
    Video SWU video by EFF 10/29/2013
    Blog other VA leg candidates Blog
    Blog NY candidates – record number
    McKnight and NJ leg candidates in 14th NewsRelease L’s give voters option to shrink Big Government, advance liber 11/4/2013
    NewsRelease candidates up for eleation Tuesday 11/4/2013
    Blog Kaplan 11/4/2013
    Blog
    Blog Sarvis – news link – shot at 10%
    Joshua katz 11/5/2013
    11/6/2013
    NewsRelease Virginia Libertarian for governor vote total shows LP rising 11/6/2013
    NewsRelease Wes’ press releaes on Booster PAC donations to Sarvis 11/7/2013
    NewsRelease With Libertarian Sarvis — mission accomplished 11/7/2013
    Blog
    Blog L’s win court case putting LP Tenn. Candidates on ballot
    Georgia victories
    11/3/2013
    10/30/2013
    11/1/2013
    11/13/2013
    11/11/2013
    Blog & Email LP Monday Message: Veterans Day 11/11/2013
    Blog all vote totals BLOG 11/14/2013
    Blog
    Blog marij poll results
    Need Your Help 11/14/2013
    11/15/2013
    Blog & Email Monday Message: rise of Libertarians? Overby 11/18/2013
    Blog & Email Ballot fund update & Lucas Overby 11/19/2013
    Thursday, November 21, 2013 Page 2 of 2Media Coverage from
    Date
    Outlet
    30-Jun-13 through 21-Nov-13
    Title
    Subject
    18-Nov-13 TownHall.com We Conservatives Need to Stop Blaming Libertarians LP v. GOP
    16-Nov-13 Nolan Chart What Makes Libertarians Run? candidates/elections
    14-Nov-13 ABC Newspapers Independence Party, minor parties prepare for campai candidates/ballot access
    12-Nov-13 Reason The New Future of Libertarian Politics LP popularity
    12-Nov-13 Washington Times Community D, R, or ? Can a third party win in America? LP popularity
    12-Nov-13 Sunshine State News Gary Johnson Rips Into Obamacare candidates
    12-Nov-13 Books World The Libertarian Party Book is Released for Youth National activism
    10-Nov-13 Forbes Who Will Be the Next Libertarian Spoiler Candidates
    10-Nov-13 Shadow Politics Shadow Politics Interview with Carla Howell Intro into the LP
    04-Nov-13 New Jersey Watchdog In New Jersey and Virginia, Libertarians campaign for t ballot access
    30-Oct-13 Huffington Post If This Is What 2016 Is Going to Look Like, the GOP Is Third party popularity
    30-Oct-13 Charisma News Why Libertarians Are Seeing Political, Social Clout Gr Third party popularity
    30-Oct-13 The Week The GOP’s budding libertarian problem Candidates
    29-Oct-13 Public Religion Research Institu American Values Survey LP Popularity
    29-Oct-13 Religion News Service Survey: Libertarian numbers are small but their social, Third party popularity
    29-Oct-13 Uncommon Journalism As Congress Mulls Farm Bills, Two Radically Different National Policy
    29-Oct-13 Public Religion Research Institu In Search of Libertarians in America LP Popularity in America
    29-Oct-13 Salt Lake Tribune Survey: Libertarian numbers are small but their social, Third party popularity
    29-Oct-13 Sunshine State News Gary Johnson Turns Up the Heat on the NSA national activism
    29-Oct-13 Washington Times Libertarians: Don’t call us tea partyers; survey finds bl third party policy
    29-Oct-13 Mike Essen Show Carla Howell on Mike Essen Show LP politics/general issues
    29-Oct-13 Washington Post Poll: 22 percent of Americans lean libertarian Third party popularity
    29-Oct-13 Public Religion Research Institu 2013 American Values Survey: In Search of Libertaria National LP Appeal
    28-Oct-13 Chuck Morse Speaks LP Foreign Policy on Chuck Morse Speaks foreign policy
    28-Oct-13 Examiner Libertarians participate in Stop Watching Us rally in D National activism
    27-Oct-13 BizPac ‘Stop Watching Us’ rally in DC pulls off the impossible National activism
    27-Oct-13 New Republicn Chart: The Anti-NSA rally was so politically diverse, ev National activism
    26-Oct-13 BuzzFeed Politics Libertarians And Progressives Team Up Against NSA 25-Oct-13 Game Politics Edward Snowden Breaks Silence to Endorse StopWat National Activism
    Thursday, November 21, 2013
    National activism
    Page 1 of 3Media Coverage from
    Date
    Outlet
    30-Jun-13 through 21-Nov-13
    Title
    Subject
    23-Oct-13 Huffington Post Thousands Expected At Rally Against Mass NSA Surv National activism
    22-Oct-13 Deseret News Party politics 101: A look at political history of third par 3rd party politics
    21-Oct-13 Houston Press Let Them Eat Cake: The Poverty of Libertarianism LP response to shut down
    21-Oct-13 The Mirror EDITORIAL: Current discontent with two party system Third party popularity
    19-Oct-13 Examiner Libertarians offer alternative to Republican and Democ LP as an alternative
    19-Oct-13 13WMAZ Many students would welcome 3rd political party 18-Oct-13 The Global Dispatch New Gallup Post Shows Americans Want A Third Part Third Party Awareness
    18-Oct-13 CBS DC Experts Skeptical A Third Party Will Rise To Challenge Third Party Rising
    15-Oct-13 Ktalk Ktalk Carla Howell Interview LP support
    14-Oct-13 The Anniston Star Third party a popular idea; experts say it won’t happen 3rd party possible
    11-Oct-13 Examiner Libertarians say there is no government shutdown loo government shutdown
    11-Oct-13 Examiner New poll: Americans want third parties included in polit Ballot access
    06-Oct-13 The Global Dispatch LP Political Director Howell On ‘Government Shutdow CH Interview
    04-Oct-13 Digital Journal Op-Ed: Libertarianism and the Politics of ‘Wolves’ in s Libertarian party politics
    02-Oct-13 RT TV RT TV Carla Howell Interview on govt shutdown Government Shutdown
    29-Sep-13 The Schilling Show Schilling Show Carla Howell Interview govt shutdown/defund Oba
    28-Sep-13 Cypress Creek Mirror LP calls for permanent govt spending slowdown, defun government spending
    24-Sep-13 The Wild Side on WBOB Carla Howell on basic LP policy LP policies
    21-Sep-13 Straight Talk Third Party movement is alive and well PART DOS 2012 election
    20-Sep-13 Westmoreland Times LP to incumbents: defund Obamacare now- or risk vot Obamacare
    19-Sep-13 Guardian Express GOP still trying to herd cats LP taking over GOP
    16-Sep-13 Behind The Mike Joel Michalec interviews LP political director Carla Ho NSA, 4th amendment
    11-Sep-13 RT TV US must curb ‘inappropriate, unconstitutional’ posture Syria Intervention
    10-Sep-13 Examiner PolitiFact gets it wrong on Libertarian claim LP Size/Third Parties
    08-Sep-13 PressTV PressTV Carla Howell Interview Syria Intervention
    Third party popularity
    04-Sep-13 The Examiner FL candidates stand again
    30-Aug-13 The Global Dispatch Obama and Kerry Push Fo
    27-Aug-13 The Examiner L’s strike in FL and VA
    11-Aug-13 PressTV
    Thursday, November 21, 2013
    Obama’s job in office damaging and disruptive: Carla
    Obama Presidency
    Page 2 of 3Media Coverage from
    Date
    30-Jun-13 through 21-Nov-13
    Outlet
    Title
    Subject
    11-Aug-13 PressTV Obama’s vacation – job in
    10-Aug-13 Fox News Sarvis has tough words for
    08-Aug-13 Medill News Services Medill News Services Carla Howell Interview NSA, privacy
    07-Aug-13 Juvenile Justice Information Ex Budget Cuts Could Leave 22 Million Children Without Food stamps/budget
    06-Aug-13 Mother Jones Deceased campaign contri
    05-Aug-13 MSNBC TPM Deceased campaign contri
    05-Aug-13 Tucson Citizen Deceased campaign contri
    05-Aug-13 USA Today Deceased campaign contri
    24-Jul-13 PressTV US media keep politicians in power: Howell Media and politics
    24-Jul-13 WVHU Carla Howell on Obamacare Obamacare
    21-Jul-13 The Telegraph
    20-Jul-13 KDKA Pennsylvania
    Libertarian leanings now p
    do we have audio?
    18-Jul-13 Personal Liberty Digest
    Everyone should be a liber
    11-Jul-13 Seacoast Online Snowden should be given the Medal of Freedom
    NSA surveillance
    05-Jul-13 The College Fix LIBERTARIANS MOUNT INDEPENDENCE DAY PRO NSA surveillance/restore t
    03-Jul-13 PressTV US govt too big to be trans
    02-Jul-13 Huffington Post Steve Mariotti remembers
    01-Jul-13 The Christian Post LP theory of justice
    01-Jul-13 US News and World Report “Sarah Palin “”libertarianis
    01-Jul-13 U.S. News & World Report
    Wash Times
    Thursday, November 21, 2013
    Sarah Palin’s ‘Libertarian Streak’ Doesn’t Impress Libe Sarah Palin and libertariani
    LP on Syria / Libertarian o
    Page 3 of 3Director of Operation’s Report
    by Robert Kraus
    Blackbaud – Data Dumps – Internal Customer Service
    We did a major email data cleanup of our database (Raiser’s Edge) resulting in removing over 12,000 known bad
    emails. There are an additional 33,000 emails that we do not know if they are good or bad and have hired an email
    verification service (Melissa Data) to check those and we will further remove any additional bad emails from the
    database.
    This process should be totally complete by the time of the Dec LNC Meeting and the Dec data dumps should
    include only good emails. Going forward, we will be cleaning emails on a quarterly basis. In addition, we are
    sending an email to new members and renewals letting them know their membership cards are on the way (and
    also allowing us to immediately verify the validity of the emails provided so we do not ad more bad emails to RE).
    Building (Office Acquisition) Fund
    Building Fund reserves now at $313,473.47 net ($357,543.47 including outstanding pledges). We currently are in
    negotiation to purchase a property in the Roundhouse Sq development where 1428 Duke was located. The
    property is an end unit town house in a fee simple association (not an “office condo”). We are hoping to close a
    deal on one of the Roundhouse Sq. properties (there are several on the market) by the Dec LNC meeting.
    FEC Filing
    We continue to file accurate FEC reports and use Paula Edwards to complete the FEC Filing Process on a monthly
    basis and handle our amendments. The reconciliation and audit steps to this process continue to work to assure
    that these reports are correct prior to filing, and to insure that the disbursements and contributions match to our
    cash accounting records.
    There are some recent concerns over the acceptance of bitcoins by political organizations and candidates. The FEC
    could not come up with an agreement on a response to an inquiry by a Republican based PAC and will continue to
    investigate the issue.
    Meanwhile, we believe we are in compliance because we do not except bitcoins directly. We use a merchant
    processor called BitPay and we only accept contributions in dollar amounts and only receive funds in dollars – just
    like how we handle PayPal. Thus, we find that the current FEC discussions concerning bitcoins do not apply to us
    since the FEC previously ruled that it is acceptable to receive donations via PayPal and other third party merchant
    possessors.
    As a reminder, the FEC reports are done on a cash basis while our financial reports are done on an accrual basis as
    required by our bylaws which require adherence to GAAP. Therefore, our Statement of Operations will not always
    look the same as what is reported on the summary page of our FEC Filings.
    Financial
    We continued efforts to control and maintain our expenses and we continue to maintain zero accounts payable.
    Other
    We upgraded our server (along with our firewall and server software (such as WHM and CPanel) at Softlayer
    (where we host our email and group lists). The new server and software package resulted in saving $60 a month
    on hosting and provides a more robust and secure environment. In addition, we installed email archiving which
    now backups all incoming emails to an @lp.org address and outgoing emails from an @lp.org address or @lp.org /
    @hq.lp.org group list for a retention period of 2 years.
    Thank you!
    Robert

  17. paulie Post author

    Come on Paulie, at least tell people what I was asking / trying to find out!

    Sorry. Trying to keep up as best I can. Keyboard is a bit hard to work with, haven’t slept last 2 nights, had to go grab some fruit from the other end of the room because I haven’t eaten breakfast because I was trying to get this setup going here instead, etc.

  18. paulie Post author

    My brain doesn’t work well when I skip breakfast. Less so when I have very little sleep. I don’t type fast as it is but this keyboard makes me even slower than usual.

  19. Chuck Moulton

    Starchild, it would be great to hear your perspective as well rather than entirely relying on Paulie for the reporting. For example: perhaps you could tell us what your back and forth with Neale was about.

  20. paulie Post author

    Starchild is at the table so he may be too busy to do the updates right now. I am sure he will add additional detail later when he has more time. He is talking right now in discussing staff report. But yes I coud use some help here,

  21. Stewart Flood

    Moving to Blackbaud’s servers would be a mistake. While you eliminate cost of maintaining your own server (which is currently a rather nice server already paid for with at least 3-4 years of expected life before it is “obsolete”), you lose control of your data (see federal case law regarding seizure of hosted data without the use of warrants), the system will NOT be as fast, and (based on my personal knowledge and the fact that I know literally dozens of Blackbaud employees) the system is not as good and is not as stable or as reliable as hosting your own.

    My guess is that this would a reduction in operating cost, but based on the known risks I would advise against it.

  22. paulie Post author

    Discussion of whether LP.org will have a way for people to join as free members of LP without paying money.

    Geoff wants to do it.

    Wes says there is a way to do it but it is hard to find and they tell people if someone asks them.

    Geoff wants that made easy to find so he doesn’t have to keep getting emails that ask why it’s not there. Also because it is a qualified prospect for potential contributors list that gets foot in the door.

    Past LNCs and Geoff in the past have been against this.

  23. paulie Post author

    10 min break – executive session on audit committee after break. Audit may or may not be discussed in open session after executive session.

  24. Michael H. Wilson

    Thanks for the updates Paulie. And thanks to all who made it to the meeting given the storm. I’ll drop in late; going up state to finish our news letter.

  25. George Phillies

    With respect to the Cloud payments, someone should ask Neale exactly what he approved on each occasion. If the chair approved an expenditure, there should have been a written record of what he approved. If the dollar amounts were too small for the contract rule to apply, that means that there *was* a dollar amount, or a commission with cap, or something.

  26. Roger Roots

    Great job Paulie (and everyone else keeping us informed). Is it possible to show up there and live blog from a laptop without paying the $50 internet-connection fee? I ended up running a half marathon this morning in Fort Worth. (I beat my younger brother by about a minute.) I’m planning on getting over there to DFW by the afternoon.

  27. Starchild

    Roger – I encourage you to come – I think you should be able to use the Internet. I’ve got a connection here that I haven’t been using much, because I’ve been paying attention to the meeting.

  28. Starchild

    George – Some of this stuff was from when Mark Hinkle was chair. I don’t recall Geoff saying he’s approved any of the expenses in question.

  29. Stewart Flood

    The work that Cloud did when Hinkle was chair was supposed to be all voluntary. I was present several times when he said (and I had also asked) that he was not charging to help promote the convention.

    From what I’ve read recently on IPR, it appears that an agreement was reached between Cloud and Howell sometime in the month or so before the convention to start charging for FUTURE work. Cloud then misrepresented his potential conflict by saying that he was not currently a vendor.

    Did Mark Hinkle know that Cloud was going to become a paid vendor? I’ve got no idea. It is possible that he did, but it is also possible that he did not. There was a lot of stuff going on. Between the preparations for the convention, the chair race (both of them were attending a LOT of conventions) and the attempts by myself, Hinkle and others to figure out how to get the stolen — sorry, meant to say “borrowed” — $33K returned…

    When I heard about Cloud’s involvement with convention I had the impression that Hinkle thought Cloud was working as a volunteer. I could certainly be wrong, but my guess is that there is neither the incoming or outgoing chair knew about it until after the fact.

  30. Mark Axinn

    Paulie–

    Thanks for updates–keep up the good work.

    Not necessary to apologize or explain: just the facts, man! In particular, I am interested in Bill Redpath’s ballot access report and budget, but whatever you report is helpful.

  31. Starchild

    We are still in the secret meeting (aka “executive session”) on the Audit Committee. Worked through lunch. Lunch was provided by the hotel; I saw some documentation from staff, that appeared to indicate — not sure whether this was a final invoice or not — $32.50 per person cost for lunch for 35 people, which would be $1137.50.

    I mentioned this to Jim Lark (LNC regional rep.) and he said he also had the impression we were being comped by the hotel. That’s what it appeared to indicate to me on the spreadsheet we were given ahead of time by LP operations director Robert Kraus. But when I asked Robert this morning whether we were paying any money to the hotel, he said “Of course!” but couldn’t or wouldn’t say exactly how much.

    I think these kind of expenses — $1000+ for food — are unacceptable. Being on the LNC is expensive, which is a problem in terms of the party’s governance because that should be open to everyone regardless of means, but that problem should be addressed by holding more meetings virtually, not by using the party’s money to pay for our lunches and so on.

    In my opinion, of course. But if you agree, please tell your LNC reps. Obviously this is an ongoing problem, and I don’t have the clout to get it fixed by myself.

  32. Jill Pyeatt

    I thought i had posted everything except the membership report, and that was because my computer just simply wouldn’t do that particular attachment. I’m sorry if I missed anything. I never saw a treasurer’s report, but maybe that means it came in earlier or later than everything else. There was a lot to go through last week.

    Many thanks to all of you who are there, especially those who weren’t committed to going. Did Lieberman show up?

  33. Roger Roots

    I’m at the hotel lobby now. There is free wifi in the lobby but the lobby’s signal doesn’t travel far down the hallway (for obvious reasons).. The LP meeting is in a conference room in the basement. A small group of outsiders are gathered in the hallway outside the meeting where the Committee is in secret (“executive”) session. Wes Benedict, Robert Krauss and a couple Texas LP count chairs have an informal gathering going on in the hallway.

  34. Roger Roots

    Starchild:
    I agree with your sentiments about the LNC’s fetish for luxury. It generates and sustains a sharp divide among LP activists. And it is not an effective way to run a political party. Those LNC bigwigs with lots of money should use that money to support candidates and races rather than luxuriating at expensive hotels.
    What about America’s great campgrounds and RV parks? There are decent facilities at places like the Grand Canyon, Branson, Missouri, the Great Smokey Mountains or even Glacier National Park. Branson has huge facilities with large inexpensive motels, RV parks, campgrounds. Free coffee in the lobbies, free wifi everywhere.

  35. paulie Post author

    Wes Benedict, Robert Krauss and a couple Texas LP count chairs have an informal gathering going on in the hallway.

    Maybe getting something actually useful done or maybe having fun or both.

  36. paulie Post author

    Didn’t Wrights miss another meeting?

    Not that I can remember, but it would have had to be two in a row for it to be an issue and it wasn’t.

  37. paulie Post author

    I thought i had posted everything except the membership report, and that was because my computer just simply wouldn’t do that particular attachment. I’m sorry if I missed anything. I never saw a treasurer’s report, but maybe that means it came in earlier or later than everything else. There was a lot to go through last week.

    Thanks for posting all you did – I thought earlier that there had been a written treasurers report, but earlier today I tried to find it and didn’t so I now think I was confused…we had a couple of other reports from the treasurer but not a treasurer’s report in writing.

  38. paulie Post author

    Not necessary to apologize or explain: just the facts, man!

    I was addressing Starchild’s disappointment that I failed to go into detail about what he was arguing with Geoff about this morning.

    In particular, I am interested in Bill Redpath’s ballot access report and budget, but whatever you report is helpful.

    Given the time of day, my best guess right now is that that will all be tomorrow. The only things we did today are what was already mentioned this morning and the executive session which is still going on.

    Earlier I thought that we were not allowed to be online during executive session but I now have reason to think that as long as I am not recording anything or discussing what was said in executive session I am OK.

  39. paulie Post author

    The work that Cloud did when Hinkle was chair was supposed to be all voluntary. I was present several times when he said (and I had also asked) that he was not charging to help promote the convention.

    It appears that I misread the receipts earlier. Michael Cloud did do that work as a volunteer. However part of his receipt explains that if he had been paid for it the same way he got after he started his vendor relationship he would have made another high four figures. He is however taking credit for the entire 170k in convention revenues … but not getting paid for it, just using it to help justify why he was worth paying what some people think was way too much money for work that was done subsequently.

  40. Mark Axinn

    Thanks Paulie and Starchild for all you’re doing to keep us apprised.

    Get some (a) food and (b) sleep and we’ll all be checking in tomorrow.

  41. Stewart Flood

    They have to take some action. They can’t spend half a day or more in executive session on an issue that is known about by the general membership (or at least those of us paying attention) and not act.

  42. paulie Post author

    Is it possible there will be open discussion of
    the Audit Committee report tomorrow?

    Not likely. There’s not nearly enough time to get through the agenda as it is.

    Meeting is starting in 5 minutes,

    There are likely to be several motions for various people to reimburse portions of money paid to them previously.

  43. paulie Post author

    Thanks Paulie and Starchild for all you’re doing to keep us apprised.

    Get some (a) food and (b) sleep and we’ll all be checking in tomorrow.

    Thanks! Did all that…still tired because of the two nights of sleep missed previously but I did sleep last night, so unfortunately couldn’t hang out at the Texas LP afterparty or go out on the town. I did go to the Texas LP reception/panel on government surveillance, but was having trouble with exhaustion even then (early evening).

  44. paulie Post author

    They have to take some action. They can’t spend half a day or more in executive session on an issue that is known about by the general membership (or at least those of us paying attention) and not act.

    I’m not sure there wil be very much.

  45. paulie Post author

    Or in the case of a motion to remove, 2/3.

    I don’t think that is likely at all. I do foresee some removals of sitting LNC members by the delegates in a few months.

  46. paulie Post author

    Everyone who wants to apply or reimbursement asked to write dow how much they spent and how much they are willing to write off. No action taken at this time.

    Discussion of taking action on items discussed in executive session put off til later so we can call party counsel Gary Sinawski which was supposed to be yesterday but got put off because we were still in executive session at this time.

  47. paulie Post author

    Starchild asking Sinawski about confidetiality rules regarding some of our communications between LNC and counsel.

  48. paulie Post author

    There was some questions(s) about litigation in New England, I think about ballot access. Sinawski call finished.

  49. paulie Post author

    Cloud N Hinkle N Redpath N Starchild Y Vohra N Olsen N Kirkland N Goldstein Y Wiener N Lieberman pass Pojunis absent Tomasso N Lark N Visek Y Johnson N Hagan N Lieberman Y Neale doesn’t vote Fails 11-4

  50. paulie Post author

    Next up Visek motion for Howell to repay rental deposit and friend’s airfare. Carla has admitted she should not have been paid that money so this is likely to pass.

  51. paulie Post author

    Hinkle N Redpath Y Starchild Y Vohra N Olsen Y Kirkland Y Goldstein Y Wiener Y Lieberman Y Tomasso Y Lark Y Visek Y Johnson Y Hagan Y Cloud Y Neale not voting passes 13-2

  52. Thomas Knapp

    Back in 2001, I wrote the following:

    “Find a plausible candidate. Get yourself and your shills hired as ‘staff.’ Turn on the hype machine and start rolling out bizarre, unsupportable claims about the campaign’s potential (or, in the [name redacted] case, flatly false claims about the current situation); wait for gullible Libertarians to write checks. Pass those checks through to your pockets by any means necessary. If the money train loses momentum, go to an LNC that is composed equally of friends and of people who will do just about anything to keep the LP from being embarrassed by your graft, and schmooze them to write you a check from Party funds.
    In the case of the [name redacted] campaign, [different name redacted] got lucky. Despite his ministrations, she performed pretty damn well. Not that that matters: If she had polled 1/2 of 1%, we would have been hearing about what a victory it was, and we’d still be looking at her as a potential 2004 nominee …. Since she did extremely well, he has her back in harness to pull the money train around the track an *additional* time in 2002.”

    Three guesses which two names were redacted. There’s been some refinement of method over the last 12 years, but it still seems to be essentially the same ongoing milking operation.

  53. paulie Post author

    Starchild Y Vohra N Olsen Y Kirkland Y Goldstein Y Wiener Y Lieberman Y Tomasso Y Lark Y Visek Y Johnson Y Hagan Y Cloud Y Hinkle Y Redpath Y Neale does not vote passes 14-1

  54. paulie Post author

    Hinkle moves to suspend the rules to immediately go to budget and come back to audit if there is time later. Visek wants to make 3 more motions.

  55. paulie Post author

    Vohra Y Olsen Y Kirkland Y Goldsein N Wiener N Pojunis N Tomasso N Lark N Visek N Jonson N Hagan N Cloud Y Hinkle Y Redpath N Starchild N fails

  56. paulie Post author

    Visek moton about Howell shipping expenses. These were for dozens of boxes of political archival records that she moved in 2013, but somehow the 2012 audit dealt with this. The motion is for Kraus to get records of the receipts on this.

  57. paulie Post author

    Olsen N Kirkland Y Goldstein Y Wiener Y Pojunis Y Tomasso Y Lark Y Viek Y Johnson Y Hagan Y Cloud N Hinkle N Redpath Y Starchld Y Vohra N passes 11-4

  58. paulie Post author

    How much money are we talking with Cloud and the reimbursement expenses from Howell?

    Cloud was paid 38.8 k and Howell items add up to maybe mid-4 figures.

  59. paulie Post author

    Visek motion on FEC related issues in regard to Howell.

    Kirkland Y Goldtein Y Pojunis pass Tomasso pass Lark Y Visek Y Johnson Y Hagan Y Cloud Y Hinkle N Redpath Y Starchild Y Vohra abstain Olen abstain Pojunis Y Wiener Y Tomasso Y Passes 12-1, 3 abstain

  60. George Phillies

    @9:38 AM The more things stay the same, the more things stay the same. There was also a 2002 episode. There were consultant fees from a referendum. There were the bills for heating oil to which the state equivalent of the FEC took exception.

    The LNC knew in advance about these.

    Besides, this is a wimpy 15% fundraising commission. Then there are with different people the 40% fundraising commissions.

  61. paulie Post author

    Kirkland Y Goldstein Y Wiener Y Pojunis Y Tomasso Y Tomasso pass Lark Y Visek Y Johnson Y Hagan Y Cloud N Hinle N Redpath Y Starchild abstain Vohra abstain Olsen Y Tomaso abstain Passes 10-2 with 4 abstaining

  62. paulie Post author

    Paulie is typing faster than I am, so my question started at the same time he answered it before I asked it.

    I did not answer it. These were separate motions.

  63. paulie Post author

    Next item on the agenda is 15 minutes for purpose of committees – Pojunis. Some people have asked that various committees be disbanded because they don’t seem to be doing anything.

  64. paulie Post author

    Motion regarding FEC matters:

    Whereas, the Audit Committee identified a number of FC-related issues, as addressed in the confidential section of the Audit Committee’s Second Interim Report and reviewed by Paula Edward; now, therefore, be it

    Ordered, Treasurer Tim Hagan shall review the relevant transactions reported on previous reports, as recommended by FEC consultant Paula Edwards, to determine the scope of the problems and follow her recommendations, including the filing of amended reports, if required, by no later than February 28, 2014.

    That was the language distributed yesterday. Some of Visek’s motions got changed somewhat from what she passed around yesterday but I don’t think this one was.

  65. Shane

    George, I’d say 15% of gross is not wimpy at all. If Cloud received 15% of the convention gross, that’s the equivalent of a convention planner’s fee. In reality, a reasonable creative fee is $2k per package.

  66. paulie Post author

    Some argument between Wes Benedict and Pojunis about whether the IT committee (I believe) is doing much of anything. It was mentioned there has been turnover on the committee due to resignations of JJM and Jillina Mack

  67. paulie Post author

    Vote on Starchild motion to add information to committees information at LP.org. I am missing the roll call on this because I was typing othe stuff when the roll call began.

  68. paulie Post author

    George, I’d say 15% of gross is not wimpy at all. If Cloud received 15% of the convention gross, that’s the equivalent of a convention planner’s fee. In reality, a reasonable creative fee is $2k per package.

    Shane see further up. None of the commissions were for convention, although it was related indirectly by way of justification/explanation.

  69. George Phillies

    Paulie, keep up the great work. I viewed your 10:15 AM my time as a good answer to my 10:16 AM, so thank you. Hopefully Wes Benedict’s recruitee for Treasurer can carry out the indicated directions to cover this issue.

  70. paulie Post author

    Shane – what I said earlier

    It appears that I misread the receipts earlier. Michael Cloud did do that work as a volunteer. However part of his receipt explains that if he had been paid for it the same way he got after he started his vendor relationship he would have made another high four figures. He is however taking credit for the entire 170k in convention revenues … but not getting paid for it, just using it to help justify why he was worth paying what some people think was way too much money for work that was done subsequently.

  71. Shane

    “Second Interim Report” by the audit committee — must be an important witch hunt. Was Starr in the executive session as a non-LNC member? Just curious.

    On committees, it sounds like they need a fundraising program committee. I’d serve on it just to avoid mistakes like with Cloud.

  72. Stewart Flood

    So they voted 10-2 to tax someone? This is stupid. This kind of issue should never reach the board. You just do whatever the accountants say you should do.

    When I moved to South Carolina, my employer reimbursed me for the move. At the end of the year, they gave me an additional check to cover the taxes on the money they gave me to move (including taxes on the tax check amount!) since payment for moving expenses is taxable income. Or at least it was in 1986.

    Hinkle is wrong about one thing: this is not a witch hunt. But while they are right to try to recover the money, it is clearly being staged to give Starr’s minions cover in the other scandal at the 2014 convention and to make certain members look good making all these motions.

    I am obviously NOT talking about all of the LNC members who are voting with Starr’s puppets. This didn’t need a motion. It just needed (in executive session) the comment: return the money or we remove you.

    Cloud voted on the motion to make him return the money. That is a direct conflict of interest.

  73. paulie Post author

    Committees discusion finished without further action. On to goals. 15 minutes, which is not nearly enough for a real discussion of this, which should have been early in the term rather than whe the term is mostly over.

  74. George Phillies

    George, I’d say 15% of gross is not wimpy at all. If Cloud received 15% of the convention gross, that’s the equivalent of a convention planner’s fee. In reality, a reasonable creative fee is $2k per package.

    Alas, the keyboard does not capture the tone ‘sardonic’ very well. Nor ‘snide”, ‘condescending’, ‘mocking; Your comment is quite true, but,…the key point on that was that there are also people getting 40% or higher, or so several state chairs have assured me, these being people who were said to have come with the LNC’s endorsement. You may or may not recall 15 years ago and the follow who got a certain rate on each fundraising letter used, regardless of performance, and who was finally it seems paid for several million letters,

  75. paulie Post author

    “Second Interim Report” by the audit committee — must be an important witch hunt. Was Starr in the executive session as a non-LNC member? Just curious.

    Starr was in exeutive session as a member of the Audit committee. Cloud was also in the executive session. Some staff members may have been called into the room and/or on the phone at various times. I’m not sure how much of that I am allowed to say, although people outside the room could see who was called into the room.

  76. Stewart Flood

    And an FYI: Cloud WAS paid to “volunteer” at the convention. Follow the trail. You will find it. The audit committee missed this one.

    I just remembered how it was done. If he claims he was not paid he is technically correct. Ask him if he was “compensated” and you better get a different answer.

  77. Shane

    Lol, fair enough George. As you know some ballot access fundraisers demand that high percentage today — I stand by my industry’s code that commissions should not be paid.

  78. paulie Post author

    I just remembered how it was done. If he claims he was not paid he is technically correct. Ask him if he was “compensated” and you better get a different answer.

    As far as asking him in the LNC meeting we have finally moved on from the audit.

  79. paulie Post author

    I am missing much of the goals discussion because of the back and forth on the audit comments on here (I can hear what is going on but not processing everything fully) but I doubt there is enough time left in the term to do much about these goals anyway, so this is probably an exercise in futility. Some goals will be set which will most likely to amout to hot air. But maybe not.

  80. paulie Post author

    If this LNC, in the midst of all of the audit issues, votes to implement a floor fee in Columbus, it will not look good.

    Agreed.

  81. paulie Post author

    Much of the goals is from Lark which was on LNC list. I haven’t caught up to see whether it has been on the reflector yet. Olsen also had something, which I missed. Lark withdraws goals discussion to email list without objection. In this case I think it makes sense. 7 minute break. Office purchase report/discussion next.

  82. Stewart Flood

    I think he should be asked, on the record. It was not really an issue at the time, but he has made it an issue by lying in his initial conflict of interest statement, overcharging for services that a board member should be ethically bound to volunteer for, failing to give accurate invoices and then later doctoring the invoices.

    He was not responsible for the income at the convention. The fundraiser wasn’t even very successful. It would have done better without his involvement in it.

  83. paulie Post author

    I think he should be asked, on the record. It was not really an issue at the time, but he has made it an issue by lying in his initial conflict of interest statement, overcharging for services that a board member should be ethically bound to volunteer for, failing to give accurate invoices and then later doctoring the invoices.

    He was not responsible for the income at the convention. The fundraiser wasn’t even very successful. It would have done better without his involvement in it

    It is an interesting question but I do not believe we will come back to it this meeting,

  84. paulie Post author

    Cloud proposes multiple choice about voting on different ways to pay for convetion. Question on whether this is allowed. Mattson says yes. Redpath proposes instant runoff. Neale rules it is not alowed. Challenged. Uphed 10-4 with 2 abstentions.

  85. paulie Post author

    New Cloud motion:

    Cost of room, AV, room setup, delegate tags (some other stuff) $40-50k – add this money to gold, silver and bronze package cost to make up for those who don’t pay for “their share” of it. I get the sense Cloud will vote against his own motion. Johnson proposed it as a substitute motion earlier but that was moot since the main Cloud motion for the multiple choice was ruled out of order.

  86. Shane

    This LNC meeting brings up a Bylaws issue that needs to be amended. There should be adequate notice of meetings to the members — at least 14 days.

  87. Stewart Flood

    Here, I will state that I still agree with the members who are attending paying for the use of the room. The “membership dues” do not cover this.

    We can’t hold conventions at a camp ground or in a park. That is irrational thinking. Those who have never been involved in the planning of a convention are not aware of the scope of issues to be dealt with. There is no free lunch.

    Are you paying to vote? You already are. Think about this: who pays for your transportation, food and lodging while you attend the convention to vote? You do. So you are already paying to vote. Don’t try to tell me that the national party should provide free transportation, food and lodging to delegates.

    Floor fees are not a tax. They are your fair share of the cost, as someone who volunteered to undertake the party’s business. We are not the government. There is no free lunch, and certainly no free cheese. Unless of course you are certain board members who get compensated to volunteer.

  88. Starchild

    Michael Cloud proposed a multi-option motion biased to favor floor fees, which was ruled out of order by the chair on parliamentary grounds. Cloud’s challenge to the ruling of the chair was voted down. Gary Johnson moves option “D” from Cloud’s motion, basically not having floor fees and having meeting room costs covered by packages. We’re debating it now. I spoke against floor fees.

  89. paulie Post author

    Question from Visek whether keynote speaker is part of the costs included. Neale says that keynote speaker is not business, and if the proposal passes he is in favor of locking those who don’t pay out of the hall for listening to the speaker.

  90. Starchild

    Still debating the issue, but it’s looking like we may be able to vote down a floor fee. Bill Redpath, Dan Wiener, and Geoff Neale all reluctantly speaking against imposing the fee — not because they philosophically agree that delegates shouldn’t be charged for volunteering to do the party’s business, I think, but because they see the writing on the wall in terms of the will of the party.

  91. paulie Post author

    Tomasso Y Lark Y Visek N Johnson Y Hagan Y Cloud N Hinkle N Repath Y Starchild Y Vohra Y Olsen Y Kirkland Y Goldstein N Wiener Y Pojunis N Neale Y Passes 11-5

  92. paulie Post author

    Starchild tries to extend time to discuss other aspects of convention for 10 min. Withdrawn after Goldstein says he has nothing else to present. On to office purchase discussion.

  93. Chuck Moulton

    Paulie wrote:

    [vote against floor fees:] Tomasso Y Lark Y Visek N Johnson Y Hagan Y Cloud N Hinkle N Repath Y Starchild Y Vohra Y Olsen Y Kirkland Y Goldstein N Wiener Y Pojunis N Neale Y Passes 11-5

    Yay!

  94. paulie Post author

    Kraus say we have enough money to go ahead on 1444 Duke Street purchase, Neale says he says authority to sign a purchase agreement which binds the seller but not us, executive committee will make final decision. Belief is we will raise a lot more money once purchase decision is announced.

  95. paulie Post author

    Gary Johnson moves option “D” from Cloud’s motion, basically not having floor fees and having meeting room costs covered by packages. We’re debating it now. I spoke against floor fees.

    Johnson tried to move that earlier as a substitute to the Cloud multiple choice but it was moot since the main motion was out of order. Then Cloud moved it as a separate motion, voted against it, and it passed. Hoisted by his own petard 🙂

  96. paulie Post author

    Redpath ballot access action report

    Vermont will soon be in completed column

    Ron Nielsen – Our America PAC may fund some ballot access

  97. paulie Post author

    Not clear if Our America PAC will actually have any money for ballot access or not. Redpath recommended to Nielson that if they do they focus on Oklahoma.

  98. paulie Post author

    Redpath is cautiously optimistic that for 2014 courts will not apply the law to us because we are in the middle of the game for candidate petitioning in Ohio. We already won on out of state circulators. I’m speaking on Alabama next

  99. Chuck Moulton

    Paulie wrote:

    Ron Nielsen – Our America PAC may fund some ballot access

    If Our America PAC wants to do something for ballot access, how about first paying off the Gary Johnson ballot access debts — like for the Pennsylvania attorney who worked long days for over 9 weeks, won our case, and (as far as I know) hasn’t been paid a dime of his ridiculously low fee yet?

  100. paulie Post author

    If Our America PAC wants to do something for ballot access, how about first paying off the Gary Johnson ballot access debts — like for the Pennsylvania attorney who worked long days for over 9 weeks, won our case, and (as far as I know) hasn’t been paid a dime of his ridiculously low fee yet?

    You may want to ask Ron. I don’t think they have money yet.

  101. Andy

    The cost of attending conventions should be kept as low as realistically possible. Why? Because the party needs to attract as many people as possible to attend them. The goal should be increased participation, not pricing people out.

  102. paulie Post author

    The written report submitted earlier:

    LIBERTARIAN PARTY BALLOT ACCESS ACTION REPORT
    Libertarian National Committee meeting
    Dallas, Texas
    December 7-8, 2013

    Dear Colleagues:

    If we lived in a nation with just election laws, we wouldn’t have to pursue ballot access. Unfortunately, that is not the case. The following memo addresses petitioning opportunities for the LNC in 2014, and through 2016.

    I want to thank Bob Johnston, LP of Maryland Chair and an Independent Contractor to the LNC, for his work in contacting various state parties and their Chairs, and his preparation of the table that is a part of this report, and Richard Winger and Paul Frankel for their assistance in updating this report.

    We currently have ballot access in the following 29 states (plus DC): AK, AZ, AR, CA, CO, DE, FL, GA, ID, IN, KS, LA, MD, MI, MS, MO, MT, NE, NV, NM, NC, ND, OR, SC, SD, TX, UT, WV & WY. This assumes that all paperwork will be filed on a timely basis.

    Current petition drive updates:

    HI: Report from LPHI Chair Tracy Ryan: 706 valid sigs needed with a deadline in February 2014. 350 sigs were handed in to elections officials so far. 216 reported valid. Validity rate: 61.71%. Tracy has 300 more gross sigs, and she knows of 350-400 more gross sigs that exist. Assume 650 x 0.6 = 390 valid sigs there. That would make 606 valid sigs, 100 valid sigs short. She reports that there is an event the weekend before Christmas at which more than 100 valid sigs will be gathered, so this drive should be completed before Christmas 2013.

    States in which we could be circulating a petition in 2013 or 2014 are:

    AL: Petitioning (not subsidized by the LNC) is ongoing for local candidates in AL. Some extra petitioning near Birmingham might qualify a candidate for US House. The AL legislature has been horrible on ballot access, and it might behoove us to get a candidate on for US House to send a message and to help develop the LPAL. There has been only one LPAL candidate for public office (other than President) after 2002. No specific money request at this time. The LNC should discuss this with Paul Frankel at the Dallas LNC meeting.

    IL: In a separate email, I will forward the ballot access plans of the LPIL for 2014. The LPIL request for funds from the LNC is $66,500. I (Bill Redpath) will be in Illinois from Memorial Day 2014 through the following Saturday to work as a volunteer on this petition drive, hopefully doing petitioning.

    MA: If the LPMA runs for a minor statewide office (Attorney General, Secretary of the Commonwealth, Treasurer or Auditor) and earns at least 3% of the vote (which is highly likely) in 2014, the LPMA would be ballot qualified for 2016. It would take only a 5,000 valid sig petition drive for one of these offices. LPMA Chair Dave Blau thinks this would be good to do and requests $10,000 from the LNC for successful completion of the petition drive.

    NH: Governor and US Senate candidates can get on in 2014 with Independent petitions for 3,000 valid sigs each. If either candidate would receive at least 4% of the vote, the LP would get party status again in NH.

    NM: I have emailed and tried to call LPNM Chair Mike Blessing, but he does not respond to me. If the LP completed an 6,018 valid sig petition drive for a candidate for statewide office, and that candidate got at least 5% of the vote in November 2014, the LPNM would be entitled to its own primary, and we would no longer have to complete such arduous candidate petitions to run candidates for office in NM (except President, which requires zero sigs). We got 8.5% for Land Commissioner in 1998. There are about seven “low level” statewide offices in NM in 2014, and the petition deadline is in late June 2014. We would also need to increase our voter registration percentage to 0.3333333%. We now have about 3,541 voter registrations in NM, and we would need to increase that number by about 625.

    NY: There will be a 15,000 valid sig petition for our statewide candidates (including Governor) in 2014. Our Governor candidate in 2010, Warren Redlich, received 48,386 votes for Governor. Gary Johnson got 47,256 votes for President in New York. 50,000 votes are needed to retain ballot status for the next four years. LPNY Chair Mark Axinn says that LPNY plan includes volunteer petitioning, and (as I recall) $10,000-15,000 of LPNY funds. He says that $25,000-30,000 from the LNC will be needed to successfully complete this petition drive. The drive occurs during a six week period from about July 10 to about August 20.

    OH: There is litigation underway to fight the new (bad) ballot access law in Ohio. Richard Winger is optimistic that this lawsuit can be won, and, if so, the LPOH would likely be ballot qualified in 2014. There is a status conference on the lawsuit on Dec 4, and an expedited briefing schedule set. Winger thinks this case may be decided by the end of 2013. For now, I am assuming that there will not be a petition drive for the LPOH in Ohio in 2014.

    PA: The LPPA plans on running a candidate for Governor and other statewide offices in 2014. The results of those elections will not qualify the LPPA for the 2016 ballot. We need to do a petition in 2016. About 17,000 valid sigs will be needed on the 2014 petition. The LPPA will attempt to do this on an all volunteer basis, with the petition drive starting sometime in March 2014 and ending on August 1, 2014. Emphasis will be put on Primary Day petitioning in May. We can assess the situation after Primary Day to see if paid petitioning will be needed in PA.

    VA: The LPVA may field a US Senate candidate in 2014. 10,000 valid sigs would be needed, with ballot retention if that candidate received 10% of the vote. I do not think the LNC should subsidize this drive, given that vote percentage retention requirement.

    VT: The LPVT needs to organize in ten towns by 12/31/2013. Six have been organized so far. I will be assisting the LPVT organize four more towns by the deadline.

    WI: I intend to work with the LPWI Chair to lobby to make a minor change to the law that would get the LPWI ballot status (the Constitution Party has ballot status now because they got over 1% for US Senate in 2010, and the LP got over 1% for US Senate in 2012, but only the vote for President applies in Presidential election years). If that does not work, we would have to do 2,000 valid sigs on a separate petition for each office, but if we got 1% for Governor/Lt. Governor, or Secretary of State, or Treasurer or Attorney General, the LP would have ballot status for the next four years in WI.

    2014 Summary: IL for $66,500, plus NY for $25,000-30,000, plus MA for $10,000 equals $101,500-106,500. The preliminary budget has $123,400 for ballot access, which would allow about $20,000 for other uses during the year.

    2016 Petitioning:

    AL: 5,000 valid sig petition for Independent for President that cannot start until Memorial Day 2016, as there is no substitution for President or VP in Alabama. Early September 2016 deadline.

    CT: 7,500 valid sigs in 2016 for President. The LPCT is working with the ACLU to possibly litigate the out-of-state petitioner ban in CT. This drive will likely need some subsidization from the LNC.

    IA: 1,500 valid sigs in 2016 for President. This needed LNC subsidization in 2012.

    KY: 5,000 valid sigs for President in 2016, with a petition that can start to circulate the day after Election Day 2015. There is a US Senate race in KY in 2014, but ballot status cannot be gained through the results of that election.

    ME: 4,000 valid sig petition for Independent for President that cannot start until Memorial Day 2016, as there is no substitution for President or VP in Maine.

    MN: 2,000 valid sig petition for President in 2016. This needed LNC subsidization in 2012.

    NJ: 800 valid sigs in 2016 for President. Unfortunately, this required LNC subsidization in 2012. And, it is my understanding that the LPNJ could not get the 800 valid sigs needed for the recent US Senate election in NJ. In my opinion, the LPNJ has some bad habits in the operation of its petition drives, and I will work with the LPNJ Chair in 2016 or before to change that.

    OK: Unless something changes through litigation or lobbying, this will be a 40,000+ sig petition drive.

    RI: 1,000 net sigs for a Presidential petition. The LPRI needed LNC help for this petition in 2012.

    TN: Because the TN ballot access law has been found to be unconstitutional, the LP may be a ballot qualified party in TN, just as has been the case in OH over the past few years. If not, it is 275 net sigs for a Presidential petition. The LPTN needs to work to get this done well ahead of the deadline in 2016, not let it go to a last day fire drill, as in 2012.

    VA: In 2016, VA will require only 5,000 valid sigs for a Presidential petition. I do not know if this can be done totally volunteer or if the LPVA will have funds for this, as the LPVA’s cash minus liabilities now is only about $4,000. Some small LNC subsidization may be necessary.

    WA: The LPWA handled the Presidential petition on its own in 2012, and I anticipate that it will do so again in 2016.

  103. paulie Post author

    The cost of attending conventions should be kept as low as realistically possible. Why? Because the party needs to attract as many people as possible to attend them. The goal should be increased participation, not pricing people out.

    Exactly!

  104. Chuck Moulton

    Right. They want to raise a bunch of money and use it to line the pockets of Ron Nielsen and others using outrageous fundraising and administrative cost fees. I’m sure they’re on the lookout for all sorts of causes they can slap Gary Johnson’s name on to get more money from libertarians. Ballot access is one such cause.

    If they really cared about ballot access they would pay off their old ballot access debts instead of sending more and more money to Ron Nielsen.

  105. Starchild

    Robert Kraus says the office space we’re currently in negotiations to buy (1444 Duke Street in Alexandria, VA) for $825k (with $325k down payment) does NOT include enough space for the LNC to hold meetings there.

    Geoff Neale clarifies that he directed staff to make finding a building with space for this the “lowest priority” in their search. Scoffed that saving $1000 per year (a vast underestimate of the potential savings, in my opinion) is not significant. 🙁

  106. paulie Post author

    Johnson campaign paid part of it. Bill feels PA and national LP is partly responsible as well. 10k is the total that is still owed.

  107. paulie Post author

    Robert Kraus says the office space we’re currently in negotiations to buy (1444 Duke Street in Alexandria, VA) for $825k (with $325k down payment) does NOT include enough space for the LNC to hold meetings there.

    How much space would be needed? I believe the discussion was that no defined amount of space was ever agreed on. I think they may have enough room but it would not have much room for observer gallery, if I understand correctly.

  108. Starchild

    Geoff also implicitly tried to blame me for the above, by saying that when he asked me (on the LNC-discuss email list) how many people we’d need to accommodate at an LNC meeting, I said as many people as show up. (In fact, I said we could base expected attendance on past attendance, and move to a different space if in fact too many people showed up for a particular meeting — not that I think this is likely if we use a little common sense and don’t insist on meeting in unnecessarily spacious surroundings.

  109. paulie Post author

    Overall I believe the Duke Street move is a good one and Paul Rossi should absolutely be paid.

    Redpath mentions he is personally kicking in money for Mr. Rossi and that he is also trying to get him hired for additional litigation such as challenging rules against out of state petitioners.

  110. Andy

    Does anyone know how much money the LNC has received thus far from donations made in Bitcoins?

    I suggested that the LNC start accepting donations in Bitcoins in comments on this website several months ago, and thanks to Starchild bringing this up for an LNC vote after reading my suggestion that the LNC accept Bitcoin donations, this policy was actually implemented. I was somewhat disappointed with the implementation of it at first, because the LNC accepting donations in Bitcoins was only mentioned in a blurb in a press release that contained several other issues, and for the first few months that the LNC accepted Bitcoins, it was not on the front page of the website. I have noticed that after several months Bitcoins finally made the front page of the http://www.LP.org site, and I also read that LP Executive Director Wes Benedict said that thousands of dollars had been donated to the party via Bitcoin.

    Now if they would only accept donations in Litecoins…:)

  111. Andy

    There needs to be lawsuits filed against the out-of-state petition circulator bans in Pennsylvania, New York, Connecticut, and any other state that still has them. I suggest working with the ACLU and other minor party or independent candidates if the LP can’t do it on our own.

  112. Stewart Flood

    Andy: “The cost of attending conventions should be kept as low as realistically possible. Why? Because the party needs to attract as many people as possible to attend them. The goal should be increased participation, not pricing people out.”

    Absolutely! And that was the goal of the two conventions (2010 and 2012) for which I served on the convention oversight committee. But even a minimalistic convention will cost many tens of thousands of dollars. I believe it was also the goal in past conventions, but I was not in a position to know how they were organized so I cannot confirm that opinion.

    Of course when you COMPENSATE people who end up on the board after volunteering…ummm…

    Speakers are compensated, even if they are members/activists in the party. Free rooms, packages, etc. Sometimes money if it is an outside speaker not involved in the party.

    I am NOT SAYING THIS IS NECESSARILY WRONG.

    That said, it IS WRONG when one of the people later claims that he brought in all the income and that he was not paid…trust me…he was compensated. Look at the return on the letters he wrote. They were pitiful.

  113. From Der Sidelines

    Stewie,

    “Don’t try to tell me that the national party should provide free transportation, food and lodging to delegates.

    Floor fees are not a tax. They are your fair share of the cost, as someone who volunteered to undertake the party’s business. We are not the government. There is no free lunch, and certainly no free cheese. Unless of course you are certain board members who get compensated to volunteer.”

    Horeshit. Nobody is asking the LNC or the convention to pay their transportation, food or lodging. Non sequitur.

    Floor fees are in fact a tax, because the convention is the one biennial event the LNC is obligated to do, and the fact that they can’t budget it worth a damn and then want the delegates to pay more for their incompetence. They do not deserve that reward at all. They are an extra tax on delegates that is unnecessary so the LNC and convention can act just like government, wasting money and being grafted and corrupted.

    TANSTAAFL is simply being used here as an excuse to cover for LNC incompetency. You, Stewie, should know better than that.

  114. paulie Post author

    There needs to be lawsuits filed against the out-of-state petition circulator bans in Pennsylvania, New York, Connecticut, and any other state that still has them. I suggest working with the ACLU and other minor party or independent candidates if the LP can’t do it on our own.

    LP has more interest and resources on this than anyone (ACLU has more resources but many, many other causes) but all for working with anyone and everyone.

  115. Andy

    How about this? Increase minimum Libertarian Party dues to $50. Why? Because the minimum rate of $25 was set a long time ago, so in order to keep up with inflation, dues would have to go up to $50 to be equal to what they were when they were set at $25. Then use a small percentage of the dues increase to help cover the cost of holding conventions. Some of the dues increase could also get kicked back to the state from which the dues came.

    Perhaps there could be an exemption from the $50 minimum dues for students, as in if a person is enrolled in classes, they could have the option of receiving party membership at a discounted rate. This could help the party gain and retain more young people.

    Also, how about some contests where a free trip to a Libertarian Party National Convention could be offered as a prize? Such as, get volunteer petition signatures or voter registrations (for people who live in states that have partisan voter registration), or get contact information from people who are interested in the Libertarian Party (names, addresses, email address, phone numbers). The Libertarian Party member who gets the most volunteer petition signatures or voter registrations or contact information from people who are interested in the Libertarian Party wins a free trip to the LP National Convention, plus they receive an award which should be presented to them in front of the entire convention delegation. After winning the award, their name and picture could be placed on the http://www.LP.org website.

    There could also be a video contest, as in have a contest where people make videos about the Libertarian Party, and/or about the Libertarian Party’s view on a certain issue or issues, and whoever gets the most views online for their video wins the contest, for which the prize would be a free trip to the national convention, plus they could receive a “Libertarian Party video of the year award” which should be presented to them on stage in front of the entire convention, plus a mentioned on the http://www.LP.org website (where the video would be posted along with the name and picture of the the person who made the video).

  116. paulie Post author

    Look at the return on the letters he wrote. They were pitiful.

    Well, I can say the vending relationship is no longer in place.

  117. paulie Post author

    Budget is up next. Usually this would be the main point of the last meeting of the year but this time it took until after lunch on Sunday to even get to it.

  118. Wes Wagner

    It is obvious that the LNC is beyond saving.

    There is only one critical function that needs to be preserved in the fiery collapse that is about to come — ballot access support.

    Given that the LNC spends less than 20% of incoming funds on actual program expenses, it will not be difficult to convince donors to donate to a dedicate PAC for this purpose and ultimately arrive at a better outcome.

    As far as the LNC is concerned… this is what they will receive from me from their next fundraiser solicitation.

    https://scontent-b-sea.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/p160x160/1480664_645582945492635_1458622449_n.jpg

  119. paulie Post author

    As far as the LNC is concerned… this is what they will receive from me from their next fundraiser solicitation.

    I believe it has already been received, deposited and is currently accumulating compounded interest.

  120. George Phillies

    “MA: If the LPMA runs for a minor statewide office (Attorney General, Secretary of the Commonwealth, Treasurer or Auditor) and earns at least 3% of the vote (which is highly likely) in 2014, the LPMA would be ballot qualified for 2016. It would take only a 5,000 valid sig petition drive for one of these offices. LPMA Chair Dave Blau thinks this would be good to do and requests $10,000 from the LNC for successful completion of the petition drive.”

    Blau is not there to defend himself. The quote attributed to him is suspect. The LNC cannot legally pay for petitioning for nonFederal candidates in Massachusetts. Blau sent the LNC a couple of years back a memo listing ways this was seriously illegal. It was not a short list.

    The assertion that “Libertarians are not ballot qualified in Massachusetts” is BS. You can run as “Libertarian” in Massachusetts right now, for any partisan office.

  121. Wes Wagner

    paulie

    “I believe it has already been received, deposited and is currently accumulating compounded interest.”

    So that is why they need to move out of the Watergate…. it’s the smell!

  122. paulie Post author

    Olsen questions the 135k for office fund expenses can be counted as revenues for other purposes, which appears to be the case in the draft budget.

  123. paulie Post author

    So that is why they need to move out of the Watergate…. it’s the smell!

    The Watergate deal does stink, literally and figuratively. Glad we will be out of there and too bad it is taking so long.

  124. Wes Wagner

    “Wiener moves we should lift restriction on using office fund money to raise more money for office fund.”

    And thus the raiding of the office fund begins!!! We were all waiting for that. Expected it to happen sooner.

  125. Mark Vetanen

    “Wiener moves we should lift restriction on using office fund money to raise more money for office fund.”

    You have no idea what an expense owning a commercial building (or part of one) really is.

  126. paulie Post author

    Well it would still be office fund, just fundraising to increase it, but only on new money raised, not what was already raised which would go to down payment.

  127. paulie Post author

    You have no idea what an expense owning a commercial building (or part of one) really is.

    Who do you mean by you? Many LNC members have a lot of experience with owning commercial buildings and office space. As for me personally my experience is mostly indirect.

  128. Thomas Knapp

    Once the LNC lied out its ass to raise money for a building and then decided to buy something else with the money instead, questions like “will the thing we lied about buying have enough space for X” by definition became fairly minor issues.

  129. Jill Pyeatt

    So, the vote for Cloud to not return the money failed! Unbefuckinglievable!! I’m so disappointed in this LNC.

    I SO hope to get Wiener replaced at our convention in March, but I don’t know whe else has the time and money to travel. And what’s the deal with Arvin???

    It appears neither Cloud not Howell will have any accountability. It will be a while before I contribute to the LNC.

  130. paulie Post author

    Once the LNC lied out its ass to raise money for a building and then decided to buy something else

    It’s a townhouse/rowhouse

  131. Andy

    “Seebeck December 15, 2013 at 1:24 pm
    And while the LNC is playing politics, THIS just popped up:

    http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_24726292/proposals-underway-change-how-coloradans-elect-candidates-vote

    We all know how this crap has played out in CA and WA…”

    Top Two Primary was actually filed as a ballot initiative in Colorado last year. Fortunately, it never received any funding and did not qualify for the ballot.

    There needs to be a plan in place right now to squash Top Two Primary in Colorado, as well as any other state where it raises its ugly head.

  132. paulie Post author

    It appears neither Cloud not Howell will have any accountability.

    She is having to pay back some of the money paid for her move. No action taken against her for hiring Cloud in no-bid, no-contract handshake deal.

  133. Thomas Knapp

    “It’s a townhouse/rowhouse”

    So there’s been a change? At least as of awhile back, what they were going to buy was allegedly an office suite inside a building (or as Phillies referred to it, “the David Nolan Memorial 1% of a Buiding”).

    A townhouse/rowhouse is at least close enough to being a “building” — it has its own entrances and is sometimes architecturally distinguished from neighboring units in various ways — that it’s at least debatable.

  134. paulie Post author

    Motion to restrict ballot access mney expenditures above what is in the budget without 2/3 of EC. Missed who made the motion. Missing the roll call but it sounds like it is passing.

  135. paulie Post author

    So there’s been a change? At least as of awhile back, what they were going to buy was allegedly an office suite inside a building

    No change. It has been a townhouse/rowhouse all along. It does have its own entrances. I don’t think it is architectually distinguished and there are various restrictions on the owner as far a altering the building, etc.

  136. paulie Post author

    Short break, then executive session on confidential part of the budget that deals with staff bonuses (and salaries?)

  137. paulie Post author

    First there was a show of hands vote on Starr in executive session since he gets the confidential info anyway as audit committee and has signed non-discosure. Starr wins, but there were a fair number of people objecting.

  138. Jill Pyeatt

    Does it bother anyone else that both Mattson and Starr are both involved with the Ex Com even though they were both voted off the Ex Com?

  139. George Phillies

    The David F Nolan 1% of a building was the prior object on which negotiations fell through. It was not on Duke Street near this address. The Duke Street object is the townhouse style object similar to the one the LNC rejected during its last term.

    In my opinion, if you are having a session to discuss an audit,m you actually need to have the auditor.

    I see that a representative of the johnson campaign was present at the meeting. Was no one concern that Johnson’s pre-nomination FEC reports wildly misstated his campaign debts aty time of nomination, and his campaign is still a million in debt, including debts to people other than his campaign manager.

  140. paulie Post author

    The David F Nolan 1% of a building was the prior object on which negotiations fell through. It was not on Duke Street near this address.

    All of the addresses we have had any serious consideration of as far as I know are in the same vicinity of Duke and King and I believe part of the same complex.

  141. Starchild

    I just proposed moving $8,800 from the budget line item for “Travel, Meetings & Meals” (currently budgeted for $24,800 for 2014) to the budget line item for “Campus Outreach” (currently budgeted for $0 for 2014). The motion failed for lack of a second. 🙁

  142. paulie Post author

    In my opinion, if you are having a session to discuss an audit,m you actually need to have the auditor.

    We had an outside contracting firm but they were not here, Starr and Pojunis are.

  143. George Phillies

    Paulie, as you apparently missed:

    As covered in the July 2013 Liberty for America

    The Nolan 2% of a Building
    The LNC in the form of its Executive Committee is currently planning to take the building fund donations and buy a condo, a small section of a large office building.

    The LNC ExComm voted to buy the space. Read the full minutes at http://www.lp.org/files/ECMinutes2013-06-12.pdf

    Key excerpts from the minutes include: “The meeting discussed whether to purchase an office suite at 1101 King Street in Alexandria, VA as the Party HQ. ExComm members Geoff Neale, Lee Wrights, Tim Hagan, David Blau, Bill Redpath, Dan Weiner, and Jim Lark were all present.
    .
    Blau moved “To authorize executing a letter of intent to proceed with negotiations for 1101 King Street, Suite 160 in Alexandria, VA; preparing notice to the Watergate to exercise our 6 month exit clause; and obtaining a mortgage.”

    Neale said that he believed that the purchase cost projection presented to the EC prior to the meeting was within the bounds of the office purchase motion passed by the entire LNC. Cash on hand and costs were discussed. The building is 70% owned by Southern Management and 30% privately owned. The management company controls the building. There are current tenants. Additional space in the building is not available at this time. There is alternative space, 20,000 square feet for $5.8M.”

    The motion was passed unanimously. Voting yes: Blau, Hagan, Lark, Neale, Redpath, Wiener, Wrights.

    We are not discussing a building here. We are discussing a condominium arrangement in a very large building.

    Departing from the minutes, there is a realtor list for that address. The space is 3,841 Square Feet, and the asking price is $1,275,000. That’s $332 a square foot.

    Is $332 a square foot a lot? Better office space in Manchester, NH is typically $100 a square foot. Better office space in Colorado Springs, CO is typically $100 a square foot, with distressed properties (meaning ’in foreclosure or the like’, not ’falling apart at the seams’) as low as $60 a square foot.

    Some members of the LNC apparently had sound questions. Sam Goldstein reportedly asked “Are we buying the naming rights to the building since the David Nolan Memorial Building Fund is based on the assumption that we would buy a building and not just a condo?”

  144. paulie Post author

    Does it bother anyone else that both Mattson and Starr are both involved with the Ex Com even though they were both voted off the Ex Com?

    Their roles are audit committee and parliamentarian. If, say, Chuck was available as parliamentarian I would personally rather have him. But on the other hand Alicia is a professional parliamentarian and I haven’t heard of any problems with her parliamentary work this term.

    Aaron is obviously a competent auditor, but some people feel he is too agenda driven. I’d love it if, say, Less Antman was avalable for such a committee.

  145. paulie Post author

    1101 King St is more of a multiunit building, but our space there would also have had separate entrance(s) – kind of like a “storefront” setup.

  146. paulie Post author

    Sorry, having trouble paying attention to some of the budget changes. Art DiBiance as outside vendor approved. One or two other things I missed.

  147. Starchild

    We’re still in budget discussions… Anyone have any *SPECIFIC* suggestions for the budget? (If you’d like to propose we spend more money, please identify where the revenue would come from). I apologize I don’t know where the proposed budget is linked, but I believe if you do a search for “budget” in IPR, you can find it in a recent article.

  148. Jeff

    While not directly tied to the budget, there should be a change to move away from the requirement of the face-to-face meeting format, therefore cutting down on such expenses, allowing for funds to go to areas such as campus outreach (which was lacking in support of the LNC masses, as noted above)

  149. paulie Post author

    While not directly tied to the budget, there should be a change to move away from the requirement of the face-to-face meeting format, therefore cutting down on such expenses, allowing for funds to go to areas such as campus outreach (which was lacking in support of the LNC masses, as noted above)

    Quite correct. However not up to LNC.

    Needs to be voted on by delegates at the next convention.

  150. Starchild

    Clarification of my last post — I’m always willing to hear general suggestions too, but general suggestions may be more difficult for me to figure out how to act on in the present context.

  151. paulie Post author

    Number of people have left – Redpath, Kirkland, Olsen. Also Goldstein, but Linnabary is in for him. Lieberman has also left, but Wiener and Pojunis are both still here so their region is fully represented. Wes Benedict has left but Robert Kraus is still here.

  152. Joe

    Starchild @ December 15, 2013 at 4:36 pm wrote:

    “Anyone have any *SPECIFIC* suggestions for the budget?”

    Based on the results of this meeting, I’d suggest a vote to disband the organization and refund dues to membership as the more effective method for causing an advance in liberty.

    That would balance the budget.

    🙂

  153. George Phillies

    ” Paulie, as you apparently missed:

    I now remember that, it’s been a while.”

    Chalk it up as a beneficial consequence of hysterical amnesia. Yo9u don’t get to claim senile moments for another 40 years yet.

  154. Bob Sullentrup

    Has anyone tabulated how many motions of ‘Starchild’ have failed for lack of a second?

    I do hope someone points this out at the next LP convention, so that the delegates can never again make such a disastrous mistake electing this bozo to the LNC.

  155. Bob Sullentrup

    I logged on to IPR hoping to find some information about the upcoming service for Admiral Colley. Diane and I plan to attend. Maybe I missed it.

    What was I to find at IPR instead? Same old LNC crap, but with many more motions failing for lack of a second. Meanwhile, Obozo drives the country into the abyss.

    Not even Lee Wrights bothered to give two-pi rats-a$$-radians to show up.

  156. Shane

    Since no votes can take place in executive session, there is no need for the parliamentarian.

    Additionally, a parliamentarian attending LNC meetings is a fairly new events and was pushed as necessary by Carling/Starr.

  157. Mark Axinn

    Andy wrote, a while back:
    >There needs to be lawsuits filed against the out-of-state petition circulator bans in Pennsylvania, New York, Connecticut, and any other state that still has them.

    I can only speak for New York. It’s a ridiculous law, but fortunately many good petitioners-for-hire are registered to vote in New York and so it’s not been a problem for us as it has for much smaller states like Connecticut.

    Also, as we have very limited funds, we pick our battles and generally sue the Boeard of Elections when the fuckers, oops Republicans, knock one of our candidates off the ballot or when we have a good case to challenge a bad statute.

  158. Shane

    There have basically been the same folks serving on the LNC for the past decade or more. Despite their good intentions, what have they accomplished?

    All members and regional reps need to go. If you don’t have a clean slate, the madness will continue.

    Hopefully the delegates next year will be willing to shake things up. The incumbents and LNC veterans (anyone who has served) need to be blacklisted by delegates — then term limits imposed.

  159. Kevin Knedler

    Push at the convention to start to stagger the terms of office. Of course that means 4 year terms. We need some institutional knowledge and staggered terms addresses this. 4 year term may be too much of a financial strain on people vs a 2 year term. At least allow for consideration. Need convention to allow at least one video conference a year.

  160. Mark Axinn

    >Paulie and Starchild,
    >Thanks for your hard work covering these events, and have safe trips home.

    This time, I get to second George!

  161. Michael H. Wilson

    Andy writes; “How about this? Increase minimum Libertarian Party dues to $50.”. No instead how about doing things such as getting out in front on a few issues to attract people to the party.

  162. Mark Axinn

    I agree with Kevin.

    I represent many Boards of Directors..

    Staggered terms almost always work well.

    But this is a drastic change for LPNY, so I don’t see it happening very quickly. If people really want it, probably best to start with the by-laws committee, which I believe Chuck chairs this year.

  163. Andy

    Mark Axinn said: “I can only speak for New York. It’s a ridiculous law, but fortunately many good petitioners-for-hire are registered to vote in New York and so it’s not been a problem for us as it has for much smaller states like Connecticut.”

    It is more of a problem for the LP of NY than I’m going to get into here, but regardless, it is a stupid and blatantly unconstitutional “law” that makes ballot access more difficult than it would be otherwise in New York.

    These out-of-state or out-of-district petition circulator bans have been thrown out in court in a bunch of other places (Arizona, Ohio, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Virginia, Washington DC, etc…), and I think that it could be thrown out in New York, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut if only somebody would bother to challenge these absurd laws in court in these states.

  164. Jake Porter

    Shane said: “Since no votes can take place in executive session, there is no need for the parliamentarian.”

    I agree. Actually, running a basic meeting shouldn’t require having a biased parliamentarian.

  165. Andy

    “Michael H. Wilson December 15, 2013 at 7:14 pm
    Andy writes; ‘How about this? Increase minimum Libertarian Party dues to $50.’ No instead how about doing things such as getting out in front on a few issues to attract people to the party.”

    Getting out in front on issues is certainly important, but the fact of the matter is that it takes money to run a political party. The minimum dues rate of $25 was set back in the 1980’s. Libertarians of all people should understand inflation, and because of inflation, $25 is not worth as much as it was back when minimum dues were set at $25.

  166. Jake Porter

    “All members and regional reps need to go. If you don’t have a clean slate, the madness will continue.”

    Back in 2009, I remember saying to someone, I believe Thomas Hill, during an LNC meeting that the best thing the delegates could do would be to vote all of us, myself included, off the LNC as it was the only way to get the fighting and bad ideas to stop. That is not to say that I do not like many of the long time members such as Jim Lark. It is bad when some of these people are voted off the committee by a large percentage and the LNC finds a way to bring them back.

    Now, we just have to find their replacements. It won’t be me. I have more important things to do with my time such as running for office and drinking beer in the alley.

  167. Jake Porter

    “No instead how about doing things such as getting out in front on a few issues to attract people to the party.”

    I think raising the dues could cost us a lot of members including me. If the LP can’t spend my $25 without paying LNC members why should I trust them with $50? So they could hire members of the board of directors to do more work?

    I make good money and am more than willing to donate much of that money, but I don’t make investments that aren’t likely to generate a good return.

  168. Thomas Knapp

    “it takes money to run a political party”

    Yes, and raising dues is a good way to bring in less money.

    The LNC offers a product for sale. Some people buy it at $25. If the price is raised to $50 for the same product, some of those people will stop buying.

    The way to make more money is to offer a better product that more people want, not to jack up the price on the small number of people who are interested in it now.

  169. Wes Wagner

    I suspect that the more information that circulates about the Gary Johnson campaign mishandling of donor funds and the LNC having no oversight, the willingness of people to give any money will continue to decline.

    It was bad enough when the LNC spent less than 20% of net funds on actual political activity… but now we have to worry about whether the accounting is even right and who is going to get overpaid for what used to be volunteer work.

    The LNC is too mired in corruption … the the point where only a full reboot will fix it.

  170. Starchild

    Alicia Mattson was just there as a guest, not in any official capacity, but I think she may have been the only “parliamentary expert” type present and was willing to answer questions when asked, so the chair/LNC tended to consult her when questions arose. She seemed to be fair and unbiased as far as I could tell, and so long as we’re using Robert’s Rules, it can be useful to have someone like that around who’s not a committee member/directly involved.

  171. Mark Axinn

    Shane wrote:
    >There have basically been the same folks serving on the LNC for the past decade or more. >Despite their good intentions, what have they accomplished?
    >
    >All members and regional reps need to go. If you don’t have a clean slate, the madness will >continue.

    For many years, New York was part of Region 5N represented by Dan Karlan, who has not been on the LNC since 2012. My regional rep. is Brett Pojunis, newly-elected state chair of Nevada; he was never on any prior LNC. If New York had chosen in 2012 to remain in 5N rather than joining Region 4, the rep. would be Rich Tomasso, who is a hard-working state chair as well. Like Brett, he too was not on the prior LNC. So your theory certainly does not apply to my regional rep., whether in our current region or if my state had remained in its prior region.

    Some of the regional reps. like Dr. Lark have served their regions well for several years and so
    have been re-elected by the states they represent. Similarly, two former National Chairs are currently at-large members, so there are some members who have been on beforehand. Certainly neither Starchild nor Arvin were on prior LNC’s.

    So the hyperbole aside, the LNC has some new members and some repeaters. Just like almost every other Board, whether political, private or public.

  172. Starchild

    Yes, the meeting is over. The Internet connections in the room got bad sometime before it was over, so if Paulie got quiet early, that may be why. I wasn’t doing too much live blogging this meeting (sorry about that), as mostly there was enough going on and to pay attention to that I was reluctant to multi-task.

  173. Wes Wagner

    Starchild

    Do the other members of the LNC understand what the ultimate result of their inaction in dealing with what appear on the face to be severe improprieties will do to the finance of the LNC when that knowledge is transferred to their average donors?

  174. Mark Axinn

    Andy–

    We have to pick our battles and unfortunately without ballot status, must use most of our money for petitioning and very specific litigation.

    We have successfully had a few bad laws declared unconstitutional (e.g., I was a plaintiff in Credico v. NYS Bd of Elections which held last summer that it is a violation of the 14th Amendment to deny a candidate who qualifies for two independent bodies to be listed on both lines). Perhaps we will address the out-of-state petitioning issue at some point. Darryl Bonner told me all about testifying in the successful challenge to that law in Virginia.

  175. Chuck Moulton

    Jake Porter wrote:

    I think raising the dues could cost us a lot of members including me. If the LP can’t spend my $25 without paying LNC members why should I trust them with $50?

    I agree. The LNC needs to demonstrate value before raising dues, not afterwards.

    Additionally though I think dues perhaps should be higher due to inflation, doubling them overnight is not the right approach — people would get sticker shock. Instead they should be raised $5/year until they hit $50.

  176. Starchild

    Wes – You ask, Do the other members of the LNC understand what the ultimate result of their inaction in dealing with what appear on the face to be severe improprieties will do to the finance of the LNC when that knowledge is transferred to their average donors?

    My best guess is most of them tend to (a) underestimate how unfavorably most grassroots-level Libertarians would see this, (b) think that to the degree members are upset, it won’t make a big difference, and (c) don’t value member who have complaints and would not be sorry to see those people just leave the party and go away.

    I think these attitudes are exacerbated by the fact that they are in a sort of bubble (members of the leadership talking mostly with other members of the leadership). They don’t hear from enough ordinary members. I know, because I don’t get that many phone calls or emails. There were too few guests at our meeting. If more people would show up, or even just write, and make a stink about things, I think it would have a big impact.

    Posting critical comments on IPR is not the same. It’s very easy for LNC members to ignore what happens here. It’s harder for them to ignore emails sent to them personally; even harder for them to ignore it when people phone them up; hardest of all when people show up and confront them in person. But more people need to do these things if we want to change ingrained, top-down, cozy/insider, secrecy-oriented attitudes.

  177. Andy

    According to the Inflation Calculator at the Bureau of Labor Statistics website, $25 in 1988 is equal to $49.35 today, so increasing minimum LP dues to $50 is only recognizing the rate of inflation.

    http://www.bls.gov/data/inflation_calculator.htm

    Reality is that money is the life blood of politics. You won’t go anywhere in politics without money, and pretending that $25 is still worth what it was in the 1980’s does not make it so.

  178. Jake Porter

    I don’t think anyone is pretending that it is the same; however, if they cannot properly manage $25 how could they manage $50 and if they raise it without adding value they will lose a lot of investors.

  179. Mark Axinn

    Starchild–

    I agree that communication is essential with Board members, and can only speak for myself.

    As you saw in Bill Redpath’s report, he has direct info from me regarding ballot access and petitioning in New York. We have spoken directly at least a dozen times.

    Similarly, but not as often, I speak or email to Jim Lark, Mark Hinkle, my good friend Vicki Kirkland, Geoff, Lee, and most appropriately my regional rep. Brett Pojunis. I know I have included you as well from time to time.

    Perhaps others do not promote their states as tenaciously as I do mine. I am the first to admit to acting out of self-interest: I have a state comprised of 17,000,000 socialists and about 3,000 Libertarians so I will talk to anyone who will listen about what we need to bring the message of freedom and self-responsibility to the voters of New York.

    Thanks again to Paulie and you for keeping those of us in the trenches up to date this weekend.

  180. Michael H. Wilson

    Starchild my friend, I hope saying that is acceptable, some years back I was trying to get the LNC to update the issues section of the web site so that the membership and candidates would have some current information to work with. In doing so I emailed all of the people on the LNC. I started this back when Redpath was chair and continued for a few years until this last administration. Since the Vegas convention I have sent only one email to the entire group if my records are correct. Other than Hinkle I don’t think the chair of any administration ever replied. For a fact I know Redpath did not do so. I don’t recall if Neale ever did. A few members of the LNC actually took time to reply; Jim Lark, Tony Ryan, paulie and you and as well as a coupe of others. In my book this shows a lack of leadership and is a poor example to say the least.

    There is a big difference in filling a seat and leadership.Most of the LNC should be replaced.

  181. Mark Axinn

    Wes–

    LOL!!

    Sure, send them over. Here in Moscow on the Hudson, they’ll be right at home.

  182. Shane

    Mark, I think you missed my point. A full, clean sweep is necessary or the same folks will continue to hold the majority of influence. There are always newcomers on the LNC — and most of the time they run away screaming.

    You mentioned Dr. Lark — and everyone I know likes and respects Jim as do I. Aside from bringing decorum to the committee, how has the LP electorally advanced under his long service or anyone else’s?

    I will say that Dr. Lark has contributed a great deal more than others in that he has prevented LNC meetings from resembling underground boxing matches in Thailand.

    I would say bring in experienced board members, but let’s face it, there are no libertarians experienced in winning national elections who do not already work for the GOP.

    However, there are marketing pros, attorneys, educators, and generally bright people who could give a fresh perspective and refocus the LP on winning elections.

    What we don’t need is another session of the LNC without a discussion on how to help Libertarians win elections.

  183. Wes Wagner

    Shane

    Winning elections is a side effect of victory. You must first sell your ideas in such a way that they become popular. If your political opponents don’t steal them an implement them, then you will win elections.

  184. George Phillies

    Andy writes: “Reality is that money is the life blood of politics. You won’t go anywhere in politics without money, and pretending that $25 is still worth what it was in the 1980?s does not make it so.” Given how little of the LNCs budget is spent on anything political, changing the input dollar stream is not going to help.

  185. Shane

    Wes, no offense but that is one of the most retarded things I have read. The goal of the LP is to win elections, you do that by influencing the public to vote for you.

    What you described is a tactic or strategy to achieve the goal and is no way, shape or form a side effect of victory.

    The LP is not the standard bearer for the libertarian movement, it is a single cog within the movement with a purpose to advance Liberty by electing libertarians to public office — and we suck at getting that job done.

    If the LP had the goal of enlightening folks on the benefits of Liberty, why in the heck are we trying to get this done under the yoke of the FEC?

  186. Shane

    And on the talk of raising dues, I say lower them. Dues levels are fundraising tactics. By cutting out lower levels, you are simply killing a low dollar donor segment — the largest segment.

  187. Wes Wagner

    Shane

    Because during elections some people perk their ears up and listen who normally are not. You have to fight and pay to get on the political stage. Ballot access is table stakes to get into debates for state legislators races, etc… it take higher stakes to get the stage for larger races.

    You are delusional if you think you are going to win elections before you win the battle of ideas… but our candidates do their part and if they do it well over a period of time acceptance for our ideas will grow. They will either be stolen by other political parties in their attempt to maintain power, or there will be a political blowback and upheaval if they are intransigent and refuse.

    Also, I know when someone says , no offense, it means they know they are intending to be offensive … just like when they say “with all due respect” it means they are about to be disrespectful.

    I will not mince words, you are a delusional fool – and I can assess this readily by evaluating what you have posted.

  188. Wes Wagner

    Also, for the record, anyone in the LNC or running for political office inside the state level party is who is making claims that this party is about “winning elections” is just softening you up so they can stick their hand in your pocket.

    History has proven that in this organization .. but that notwithstanding, it is a classic con-job setup.

  189. Shane

    Lol, Wes Republicans lose the battle of ideas every day and continue to win elections.

    Electoral politics has become far more complex than most people imagine and both parties are mastering how to game “the system” to win.

    If we have to wait until we have the majority of the public on board with libertarianism before we start winning elections, well . . . we’ll be banned by the government before that happens.

  190. Andy

    “Jake Porter December 15, 2013 at 9:06 pm
    I don’t think anyone is pretending that it is the same; however, if they cannot properly manage $25 how could they manage $50 and if they raise it without adding value they will lose a lot of investors.”

    This is the fault of the delegates who voted for the people who are on the LNC, and also the fault of the general party membership for not putting more pressure on the LNC to do a better job of spending their donations.

    Like I said before, money is the life blood of politics, and operating as though $25 is worth as much today as it was in the 1980’s is not going to get us anywhere.

  191. Robert Capozzi

    andy 2013: This is the fault of the delegates who voted for the people who are on the LNC, and also the fault of the general party membership for not putting more pressure on the LNC to do a better job of spending their donations.

    someone 2000: This is the fault of the delegates who voted for the people who are on the LNC, and also the fault of the general party membership for not putting more pressure on the LNC to do a better job of spending their donations.

    someone 1990: This is the fault of the delegates who voted for the people who are on the LNC, and also the fault of the general party membership for not putting more pressure on the LNC to do a better job of spending their donations.

    someone 1980: This is the fault of the delegates who voted for the people who are on the LNC, and also the fault of the general party membership for not putting more pressure on the LNC to do a better job of spending their donations.

    me: Feels like a broken record….

  192. paulie Post author

    Based on the results of this meeting, I’d suggest a vote to disband the organization and refund dues to membership as the more effective method for causing an advance in liberty.

    Why? We had some good results, including defeating the delegate fee.

  193. paulie Post author

    Chalk it up as a beneficial consequence of hysterical amnesia. Yo9u don’t get to claim senile moments for another 40 years yet.

    Sure I do. With all the swiss cheese holes in my brain from everything I’ve done in my life I am incredibly lucky to have any functioning brain cells at all left.

  194. paulie Post author

    Suggestion: Just Vote No on budget. Dumping everything in Administration and Compensation is not a legitimate way to go.

    So keeping last year’s budget would have been better?

  195. paulie Post author

    Has anyone tabulated how many motions of ‘Starchild’ have failed for lack of a second?

    Way too many, and why are you putting his name in scare quotes?

  196. paulie Post author

    I logged on to IPR hoping to find some information about the upcoming service for Admiral Colley. Diane and I plan to attend. Maybe I missed it.

    Instead of complaining what is NOT on IPR start with sending us news, or better yes sign up to post it. IPR reporters are volunteers and as for the service, I only learned of it today and have been rather busy and/or unable to connect. I’m sure most IPR reporters have not heard about it yet.

    What was I to find at IPR instead? Same old LNC crap, but with many more motions failing for lack of a second.

    We made progress on moving out of the watergate, killed pay to play (at least for this convention), among other things. What do you expect?

    Meanwhile, Obozo drives the country into the abyss.

    Don’t forget to give equal credit to his NSGOP partners in crime.

    Not even Lee Wrights bothered to give two-pi rats-a$$-radians to show up.

    Not true at all. He had long planned family business to take care of. If the meeting had been last week as scheduled he would have been here but we had a rare weather emergency (first one I ever remember) and had to reschedule with no notice. Nevertheless 16 of 18 full members and 3 of us alternates made it.

  197. paulie Post author

    Thanks for your hard work covering these events, and have safe trips home.

    Thanks for reading. If I had a home I might have known when and where I would be going 🙂

  198. paulie Post author

    Since no votes can take place in executive session, there is no need for the parliamentarian.

    I don’t think Alicia was in any executive sessions, although I don’t remember for sure.

    Additionally, a parliamentarian attending LNC meetings is a fairly new events and was pushed as necessary by Carling/Starr.

    Seems to be a good idea. Questions about correct procedure come up quite a bit.

  199. Chuck Moulton

    Bob Sullentrup wrote:

    I logged on to IPR hoping to find some information about the upcoming service for Admiral Colley. Diane and I plan to attend. Maybe I missed it.

    http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/washingtonpost/obituary.aspx?n=michael-c-colley&pid=168541595

    Memorial service on December 20, 2013 at 1 p.m. at Old Post Chapel, Fort Myer, VA, followed by inurnment with full military honors at Arlington National Cemetery, and reception at Fort Myer Officers’ Club.

  200. paulie Post author

    There needs to be lawsuits filed against the out-of-state petition circulator bans in Pennsylvania, New York, Connecticut, and any other state that still has them.

    True

  201. paulie Post author

    All members and regional reps need to go. If you don’t have a clean slate, the madness will continue.

    In which case it may get dramatically better…or dramatically worse.

    Or it may be about the same but different.

  202. paulie Post author

    >Paulie and Starchild,
    >Thanks for your hard work covering these events, and have safe trips home.

    This time, I get to second George!

    Your money will be thanks enough 🙂

  203. paulie Post author

    Andy writes; “How about this? Increase minimum Libertarian Party dues to $50.”. No instead how about doing things such as getting out in front on a few issues to attract people to the party.

    How about both, among other things?

  204. Wes Wagner

    Shane December 15, 2013 at 10:13 pm

    “Lol, Wes Republicans lose the battle of ideas every day and continue to win elections. ”

    I disagree… there are alot of ignorant bigots out there… but the republicans are marketing to a declining marketplace and need to change their message.

    If you set out to “win elections” and compromise too much you might as well just run as an R or a D…. the purpose of having a third party is to collect as many votes are you can for the ideas that matter. On a rare occasion this might result in “winning” … sometimes it results in your ideas being stolen.

    Sometimes the opposition fails to steal the ideas and a major party becomes a minor party and a new minor party becomes a major party… but it is about being out at the forefront of ideas when the time has come and they are ripe, and being the people who were advocating for them before they ripened so you have credibility.

    Do that consistently over time and grow the number of votes your positions are worth … and you will have a victory of some form. Most likely our ideas being stolen by the existing power base and used to re-entrench their positions.

  205. Michael H. Wilson

    Shane in the preamble it says the goal is a world set free in our lifetime. I cannot cut and paste that wording because of the way the platform is set up.

    I do agree with lowering the dues and you are correct it leaves out a lot of people.

  206. paulie Post author

    Actually, running a basic meeting shouldn’t require having a biased parliamentarian.

    The actual meetings have had much need for a parliamentarian.

  207. Michael H. Wilson

    Paulie thank you for taking the time to do this tedious work and keeping us informed.

  208. paulie Post author

    Getting out in front on issues is certainly important, but the fact of the matter is that it takes money to run a political party. The minimum dues rate of $25 was set back in the 1980?s. Libertarians of all people should understand inflation, and because of inflation, $25 is not worth as much as it was back when minimum dues were set at $25.

    Exactly.

  209. paulie Post author

    The way to make more money is to offer a better product that more people want, not to jack up the price on the small number of people who are interested in it now.

    It needs to be a better product as well as keep up with inflation as well.

  210. paulie Post author

    I wonder, did this LNC take note, or pause to reflect upon, today being Bill of Rights day?

    Dr. Lark noted it in closing comments.

  211. paulie Post author

    Alicia Mattson was just there as a guest, not in any official capacity, but I think she may have been the only “parliamentary expert” type present and was willing to answer questions when asked, so the chair/LNC tended to consult her when questions arose. She seemed to be fair and unbiased as far as I could tell, and so long as we’re using Robert’s Rules, it can be useful to have someone like that around who’s not a committee member/directly involved.

    The only part you got wrong is that it actually is an official capacity as the parliamentarian. Perhaps you were not aware of that.

  212. paulie Post author

    For many years, New York was part of Region 5N represented by Dan Karlan, who has not been on the LNC since 2012. My regional rep. is Brett Pojunis, newly-elected state chair of Nevada; he was never on any prior LNC. If New York had chosen in 2012 to remain in 5N rather than joining Region 4, the rep. would be Rich Tomasso, who is a hard-working state chair as well. Like Brett, he too was not on the prior LNC. So your theory certainly does not apply to my regional rep., whether in our current region or if my state had remained in its prior region.

    Some of the regional reps. like Dr. Lark have served their regions well for several years and so
    have been re-elected by the states they represent. Similarly, two former National Chairs are currently at-large members, so there are some members who have been on beforehand. Certainly neither Starchild nor Arvin were on prior LNC’s.

    So the hyperbole aside, the LNC has some new members and some repeaters. Just like almost every other Board, whether political, private or public.

    Correct. New does not necessarily meen better. Sometimes it means fresh ideas. Sometimes it means stumbling around in befuddlement and trying to reinvent the flat tire with even less success than before.

  213. paulie Post author

    Yes, the meeting is over. The Internet connections in the room got bad sometime before it was over, so if Paulie got quiet early, that may be why. I wasn’t doing too much live blogging this meeting (sorry about that), as mostly there was enough going on and to pay attention to that I was reluctant to multi-task.

    Completely understandable. And yes that was why. Hopefully you will get a chance sometime later to fill in the gaps that I missed because I was in a daze much of the time, type slow, and missed a lot.

  214. paulie Post author

    Do the other members of the LNC understand what the ultimate result of their inaction in dealing with what appear on the face to be severe improprieties will do to the finance of the LNC when that knowledge is transferred to their average donors?

    No.

  215. paulie Post author

    I agree. The LNC needs to demonstrate value before raising dues, not afterwards.

    It’s a chicken and egg problem. Hard to do either one without the other.

    Additionally though I think dues perhaps should be higher due to inflation, doubling them overnight is not the right approach — people would get sticker shock. Instead they should be raised $5/year until they hit $50.

    That’s reasonable. As well as push monthly vs. yearly a lot more.

  216. paulie Post author

    My best guess is most of them tend to (a) underestimate how unfavorably most grassroots-level Libertarians would see this, (b) think that to the degree members are upset, it won’t make a big difference, and (c) don’t value member who have complaints and would not be sorry to see those people just leave the party and go away.

    I think these attitudes are exacerbated by the fact that they are in a sort of bubble (members of the leadership talking mostly with other members of the leadership). They don’t hear from enough ordinary members. I know, because I don’t get that many phone calls or emails. There were too few guests at our meeting. If more people would show up, or even just write, and make a stink about things, I think it would have a big impact.

    Posting critical comments on IPR is not the same. It’s very easy for LNC members to ignore what happens here. It’s harder for them to ignore emails sent to them personally; even harder for them to ignore it when people phone them up; hardest of all when people show up and confront them in person. But more people need to do these things if we want to change ingrained, top-down, cozy/insider, secrecy-oriented attitudes.

    100% agreed with every part of that. Excellent point.

  217. paulie Post author

    According to the Inflation Calculator at the Bureau of Labor Statistics website, $25 in 1988 is equal to $49.35 today, so increasing minimum LP dues to $50 is only recognizing the rate of inflation.

    http://www.bls.gov/data/inflation_calculator.htm

    Reality is that money is the life blood of politics. You won’t go anywhere in politics without money, and pretending that $25 is still worth what it was in the 1980?s does not make it so.

    All true. However Chuck is correct about sticker shock. Ease it in slowly.

  218. Jill pyeatt

    Bob Sullentrup: If it were not for Starchild and his insistence on the little transparency that we have, we wouldn’t know much about what has (or hasn’t) been done on the LNC. And as far as your complaints about IPR, we have the open thread so that people like you can pass along info. So, quityerbitchin.

  219. paulie Post author

    Starchild my friend, I hope saying that is acceptable, some years back I was trying to get the LNC to update the issues section of the web site so that the membership and candidates would have some current information to work with. In doing so I emailed all of the people on the LNC. I started this back when Redpath was chair and continued for a few years until this last administration. Since the Vegas convention I have sent only one email to the entire group if my records are correct. Other than Hinkle I don’t think the chair of any administration ever replied. For a fact I know Redpath did not do so. I don’t recall if Neale ever did. A few members of the LNC actually took time to reply; Jim Lark, Tony Ryan, paulie and you and as well as a coupe of others. In my book this shows a lack of leadership and is a poor example to say the least.

    Hence why it needs to be constant, repeated emails, phone calls and whenever possible face to face remnders and if possible from multiple different people.

  220. From Der Sidelines

    Who let Senile Sullenturd out of the nursing home? He somehow got access to a computer at the nurses’ station and logged on to here to get that instead of a simple Google search? That right there proves the point he needs to go back under his St. Louis rock and STFU.

  221. paulie Post author

    how has the LP electorally advanced under his long service or anyone else’s?

    We did better in the pesidential race than we have in 32 years. Or ever, if you count raw numbers. A few other good results to point to, but much more that needs done.

    I would say bring in experienced board members, but let’s face it, there are no libertarians experienced in winning national elections who do not already work for the GOP.

    There are plenty of people who have helped Democrats and Republicans win elections and walked away in disgust. Many are libertarians. The LP can’t afford to hire them and isn’t interested in taking their free advice, for the most part.

    refocus the LP on winning elections.

    Unless there is a coequal refocusing on being libertarian at the same time, why bother? It woud be the same crap with a new label even if we did win.

  222. paulie Post author

    Winning elections is a side effect of victory. You must first sell your ideas in such a way that they become popular. If your political opponents don’t steal them an implement them, then you will win elections.

    Exactly, thank you.

  223. paulie Post author

    Given how little of the LNCs budget is spent on anything political, changing the input dollar stream is not going to help.

    So, for example, the employees do nothing that is political, so none of their pay is related to doing anything political? Among many other things.

  224. paulie Post author

    The goal of the LP is to win elections, you do that by influencing the public to vote for you.

    That’s only one of several goals of the LP.

    http://www.uncoveredpolitics.com/2010/11/22/david-nolan-the-case-for-a-libertarian-political-party/

    If we take it in isolation, if we are really, really lucky, we can become just like the bigger parties (with the same bad policies). But that is unlikely, since people who want to vote for that crap already have those two so why do they need us?

    The LP is not the standard bearer for the libertarian movement, it is a single cog within the movement with a purpose to advance Liberty by electing libertarians to public office — and we suck at getting that job done.

    Very true, as long as we are an actual part of the libertarian movement and keep in mind the other benefits of running candidates and doing the other things we do besides only electing them. See the Nolan case for LP link, Harry Browne’s archived stuff, etc.

  225. paulie Post author

    If the LP had the goal of enlightening folks on the benefits of Liberty, why in the heck are we trying to get this done under the yoke of the FEC?

    Reaching various market segments not reached by any other way of enlightening folks on the benefits of Liberty, putting pressure on Demopublicans to adapt or be replaced, etc.

  226. paulie Post author

    Because during elections some people perk their ears up and listen who normally are not. You have to fight and pay to get on the political stage. Ballot access is table stakes to get into debates for state legislators races, etc… it take higher stakes to get the stage for larger races.

    You are delusional if you think you are going to win elections before you win the battle of ideas… but our candidates do their part and if they do it well over a period of time acceptance for our ideas will grow. They will either be stolen by other political parties in their attempt to maintain power, or there will be a political blowback and upheaval if they are intransigent and refuse.

    Correct.

  227. paulie Post author

    Also, for the record, anyone in the LNC or running for political office inside the state level party is who is making claims that this party is about “winning elections” is just softening you up so they can stick their hand in your pocket.

    Because no one sincerely believes this? With all due respect 🙂

    I disagree.

    Doesn’t mean I have to agree with them, but there is a range of motives.

  228. paulie Post author

    Republicans lose the battle of ideas every day and continue to win elections.

    Momentum. An oak tree that is rotten on the inside can appear strong until a good breeze blows it over.

    Electoral politics has become far more complex than most people imagine and both parties are mastering how to game “the system” to win.

    True. And so should we.

    If we have to wait until we have the majority of the public on board with libertarianism before we start winning elections, well . . . we’ll be banned by the government before that happens.

    We don’t have to have a majority nor do we necessarily have to win. We need to persuade a dedicated minority that we are right and that they need to get off their ass and do something about it…and keep doing it and not give up, and recruit others. That is how change actually happens.

    The Socialist and Prohibition parties did not win, but their ideas did. Not completely, but in part, due to those parties and what they did.

  229. paulie Post author

    The extra $25 given to national is $25 that cannot be given to your state party or real libertarian candidates.

    There should be synergy between levels which would inspire a lot more people to give a lot more to all of them.

  230. paulie Post author

    andy 2013: This is the fault of the delegates who voted for the people who are on the LNC, and also the fault of the general party membership for not putting more pressure on the LNC to do a better job of spending their donations.

    someone 2000: This is the fault of the delegates who voted for the people who are on the LNC, and also the fault of the general party membership for not putting more pressure on the LNC to do a better job of spending their donations.

    someone 1990: This is the fault of the delegates who voted for the people who are on the LNC, and also the fault of the general party membership for not putting more pressure on the LNC to do a better job of spending their donations.

    someone 1980: This is the fault of the delegates who voted for the people who are on the LNC, and also the fault of the general party membership for not putting more pressure on the LNC to do a better job of spending their donations.

    It was true all those other years, too.

  231. Andy

    “paulie Post authorDecember 15, 2013 at 11:06 pm

    ‘The way to make more money is to offer a better product that more people want, not to jack up the price on the small number of people who are interested in it now.’

    It needs to be a better product as well as keep up with inflation as well.”

    I’m not even really talking about increasing the dues from when they were set, I’m talking about having them reflect the amount of inflation that has occurred, so the minimum dues would be equal to what they were when they were set back in the 1980’s.

    “‘Additionally though I think dues perhaps should be higher due to inflation, doubling them overnight is not the right approach — people would get sticker shock. Instead they should be raised $5/year until they hit $50.’

    That’s reasonable. As well as push monthly vs. yearly a lot more.”

    I disagree. I would send out an email as well as a letter to all dues paying Libertarian Party members that would point out how inflation has destroyed the purchasing power of the minimum $25 dues for party membership since that rate was set back in the 1980’s, and that to reflect the amount of inflation that has occurred, minimum dues need to be set at $50 in order to equal what $25 could buy in the 1980’s.

    Dues are going to have to go up at some point, and really this should have already happened.

  232. paulie Post author

    I didn’t propose adopting last year’s budget, either.

    Not adopting a new budget does that.

    If there is no alternate proposal passed. And there was no alternate proposal ready to go.

  233. paulie Post author

    If you set out to “win elections” and compromise too much you might as well just run as an R or a D…. the purpose of having a third party is to collect as many votes are you can for the ideas that matter. On a rare occasion this might result in “winning” … sometimes it results in your ideas being stolen.

    Sometimes the opposition fails to steal the ideas and a major party becomes a minor party and a new minor party becomes a major party… but it is about being out at the forefront of ideas when the time has come and they are ripe, and being the people who were advocating for them before they ripened so you have credibility.

    Do that consistently over time and grow the number of votes your positions are worth … and you will have a victory of some form. Most likely our ideas being stolen by the existing power base and used to re-entrench their positions.

    Exactly.

  234. paulie Post author

    Shane in the preamble it says the goal is a world set free in our lifetime. I cannot cut and paste that wording because of the way the platform is set up.

    PREAMBLE

    As Libertarians, we seek a world of liberty; a world in which all individuals are sovereign over their own lives and no one is forced to sacrifice his or her values for the benefit of others.

    We believe that respect for individual rights is the essential precondition for a free and prosperous world, that force and fraud must be banished from human relationships, and that only through freedom can peace and prosperity be realized.

    Consequently, we defend each person’s right to engage in any activity that is peaceful and honest, and welcome the diversity that freedom brings. The world we seek to build is one where individuals are free to follow their own dreams in their own ways, without interference from government or any authoritarian power.

    In the following pages we have set forth our basic principles and enumerated various policy stands derived from those principles.

    These specific policies are not our goal, however. Our goal is nothing more nor less than a world set free in our lifetime, and it is to this end that we take these stands.

  235. paulie Post author

    Paulie thank you for taking the time to do this tedious work and keeping us informed.

    Thank you for reading and commenting. I would not do it otherwise. And I do accept tips 🙂

  236. paulie Post author

    Bob Sullentrup: If it were not for Starchild and his insistence on the little transparency that we have, we wouldn’t know much about what has (or hasn’t) been done on the LNC. And as far as your complaints about IPR, we have the open thread so that people like you can pass along info. So, quityerbitching

    Exactly.

  237. paulie Post author

    Who let Senile Sullenturd out of the nursing home? He somehow got access to a computer at the nurses’ station and logged on to here to get that instead of a simple Google search? That right there proves the point he needs to go back under his St. Louis rock and STFU.

    With all due respect,:-)

    why be nasty to people? Do you catch more flies with vinegar?

  238. paulie Post author

    “‘Additionally though I think dues perhaps should be higher due to inflation, doubling them overnight is not the right approach — people would get sticker shock. Instead they should be raised $5/year until they hit $50.’

    That’s reasonable. As well as push monthly vs. yearly a lot more.”

    I disagree. I would send out an email as well as a letter to all dues paying Libertarian Party members that would point out how inflation has destroyed the purchasing power of the minimum $25 dues for party membership since that rate was set back in the 1980?s, and that to reflect the amount of inflation that has occurred, minimum dues need to be set at $50 in order to equal what $25 could buy in the 1980?s.

    Dues are going to have to go up at some point, and really this should have already happened.

    Yeah, so an email and a snail mail would suddenly ease everyone’s sticker shock? Try it some time.

  239. Jed Ziggler

    I’m glad the floor fees were done away with. We should be encouraging participation in our conventions, not driving people away.

    And I’ll second Jill’s appreciation of Starchild. He & Lee Wrights are the only committee members I really have faith in.

  240. Andy

    paulie: “Yeah, so an email and a snail mail would suddenly ease everyone’s sticker shock? Try it some time.”

    $50 is really not that much money anymore. Are we trying to stop this country from moving into tyranny, or are we just playing tiddlywinks?

  241. paulie Post author

    $50 is really not that much money anymore. Are we trying to stop this country from moving into tyranny, or are we just playing tiddlywinks?

    $50 is a lot of money to some people, but for most people you have to convince them that they are getting $50 of value. Goals are nice, but not enough. LP needs to work on that. There is nothing to keep people from giving more than minimum dues and they do frequently get asked.

  242. paulie Post author

    I’m glad the floor fees were done away with. We should be encouraging participation in our conventions, not driving people away.

    Agreed.

    And I’ll second Jill’s appreciation of Starchild. He & Lee Wrights are the only committee members I really have faith in.

    Thanks and you’re welcome 🙂

  243. paulie Post author

    I would say bring in experienced board members,

    That would not necessarily mean we would get the full benefit of their past experience. Barr had plenty of experience on other boards and in politics, but what did he teach the LNC by being on it?

  244. Andy

    Paul said: “$50 is a lot of money to some people, but for most people you have to convince them that they are getting $50 of value.”

    Once again, $50 is not really so much a minimum dues increase as it is keeping dues inline with what they were back in the 1980’s.

    Also, I already suggested a student discount rate of $25 for which anyone who is enrolled in classes could be eligible.

  245. Joe

    Paulie,

    Others have expressed gratitude for your real-time (or nearly real-time) blogging; I’d like to ditto that (well done!) but also add my gratitude for your insightful replies to (almost, if not every) comment here. I think I’ve learned more from those interactions than anything that was reported as happening during the meeting itself.

    paulie @December 15, 2013 at 10:35 pm wrote:

    [Based on the results of this meeting, I’d suggest a vote to disband the organization and refund dues to membership as the more effective method for causing an advance in liberty.]

    “Why?”

    Why is because I think it should be a foundational question for every meeting; namely, “Are we maximizing the good we can do here?”

    You also (apparently missed, and didn’t re-quote my 🙂 face after that comment.

    But, you’ve also partly answered that question in your comment on Startchild’s comment which you posted at 11:17pm (damn, I miss the comment numbers).

    My experience has been that there’s a myopic focus on winning (relatively) petty internal battles, and a lack of focus on, for example, the vision expressed by those who fought for “Give me Liberty or Give me Death!”

    For this meeting you note:

    “We had some good results, including defeating the delegate fee.”

    My question is then, something like, “Given the total cost for this meeting (I spent about $325.00 NOT getting there last weekend; I assume 25 people were present; 25 X $325 = about $8,000.00 plus hotel, etc; call it (conservatively) $10,000.00

    Did the meeting do more than $10,000 worth of good in advancing the cause of Liberty? I don’t know the answer to that, but I think it is a question that should be asked. If all that was accomplished was defeating a bad idea, I’d say, clearly no.

    Last year (2012 and into early 2013) I donated $1,000 to the LP to become a life member.

    This past year on the Audit committee I learned that a no-bid, not-fully documented, not accurately invoiced, payment of more than 38 times that amount was made to a board member (Cloud). I’m not happy about that. I have my biases about Mr. Emerling/Cloud, so don’t claim to be objective here, but for what? Was there value there?? The value of 38 (or 39) new life memberships?

    If so, I don’t see it.

    And that’s what motivates this sentiment:

    [Based on the results of this meeting, I’d suggest a vote to disband the organization and refund dues to membership as the more effective method for causing an advance in liberty.]

    Why? Because it seems to me a fundamental “culture of dishonesty” has wasted my money, and was, at least before I resigned from the audit committee, wasting my time as well.

    I’d prefer an LNC where there were more immediate and clearly corrective actions for that kind of transfer of funds in (what sure appeared to me to be) violations of clear policies regarding transparency to the full LNC, review by counsel, etc.

    OTOH, like I wrote in July in an attempt to end the audit committee’s continuing investigation of these matters, the proper thing to do was to point out the issue to the Chair, the LNC, and the delegates; and not have continued, at least what seemed to me to be, a power struggle with no good end.

    I’m rambling, so I’ll stop (wasting my own time here, after a year away), except to say, I hope something I wrote above is useful to you (or somebody!)

    Again, with gratitude for your sharing both the meeting AND your unique (and nearly unique) insights,

    Joe

  246. paulie Post author

    Need convention to allow at least one video conference a year.

    Yes, but why limit the number? How about an hour or two every week, with the ability to do business then and there?

  247. paulie Post author

    Others have expressed gratitude for your real-time (or nearly real-time) blogging; I’d like to ditto that (well done!) but also add my gratitude for your insightful replies to (almost, if not every) comment here. I think I’ve learned more from those interactions than anything that was reported as happening during the meeting itself.

    Thanks!

    It cost me about $1,000 so far, so tips would also be appreciated 🙂 I do thank my one donor so far. I’m not sure if he wants to be mentioned by name. If anyone else would like to chip in travellingcircus@gmail.com (make sure to put two Ls in travelling) works as a paypal address, and there are other options I can mention, including bitcoin and litecoin, among others.

  248. paulie Post author

    Why is because I think it should be a foundational question for every meeting; namely, “Are we maximizing the good we can do here?”

    Yes, but it is also a hard question to answer, especially when lacking an outsider’s perspective. And outsiders can make their suggestions for improvement more realistic by taking a turn at being insiders.

  249. paulie Post author

    But, you’ve also partly answered that question in your comment on Startchild’s comment which you posted at 11:17pm (damn, I miss the comment numbers).

    Me too. In the meantime, copy and paste quotes IMO are best.

  250. paulie Post author

    My experience has been that there’s a myopic focus on winning (relatively) petty internal battles, and a lack of focus on, for example, the vision expressed by those who fought for “Give me Liberty or Give me Death!”

    Too true.

  251. paulie Post author

    But the question is how exactly? The details are what everyone gets bogged down in. And that is where the petty internal battles originate.

  252. paulie Post author

    My question is then, something like, “Given the total cost for this meeting (I spent about $325.00 NOT getting there last weekend; I assume 25 people were present; 25 X $325 = about $8,000.00 plus hotel, etc; call it (conservatively) $10,000.00

    Did the meeting do more than $10,000 worth of good in advancing the cause of Liberty? I don’t know the answer to that, but I think it is a question that should be asked. If all that was accomplished was defeating a bad idea, I’d say, clearly no.

    I don’t think that was all that was accomplished. But I agree that we don’t really need to be flying all over the country to do basic LNC business. An hour or two phone or video conference with the ability to do business every week would be a lot better IMO. For the intangible social value of LNC meetings, have 3 or 4 social weekends of fun activities only, no business and no quorum. Or maybe a couple of those and a couple of informal goals/strategy meetings, or some combination.

  253. paulie Post author

    Last year (2012 and into early 2013) I donated $1,000 to the LP to become a life member.

    This past year on the Audit committee I learned that a no-bid, not-fully documented, not accurately invoiced, payment of more than 38 times that amount was made to a board member (Cloud). I’m not happy about that. I have my biases about Mr. Emerling/Cloud, so don’t claim to be objective here, but for what? Was there value there?? The value of 38 (or 39) new life memberships?

    If so, I don’t see it.

    Thank you for the 1k donation. I made one in y2k and I hope to earn a few of those to myself one day 🙂

    As for Cloud: he has raised a lot of money for the LP and related causes in the past, so he is capable of it. Carla clearly works better in tandem with him than by herself.

    I wish it had not been no-bid, no-contract.

    Wes B and Art are another good team. They could and should have gotten an offer to bid as well. Don’t know if they would have accepted it.

    Now as of this meeting we have approved having Wes work with Art’s help again, which I believe will benefit us, and Carla can focus on what she does best. As for Michael he is currently not in the vendor picture.

    And we have made it clear that in the future we should have contracts and documented expenses. So those are some of the things that got done.

    There were some amounts of money voted on that Carla should refund.

    Personally I believe steps we took to finally get out of H2Ogate are a good step. YMMV.

    Those are some of the things we did.

    Was Michael worth what he was paid? To know that we would have to know what would have happened otherwise, which we don’t know. But that is what open competitive bidding is for, IMO. That and well documented expenses and payments.

  254. paulie Post author

    OTOH, like I wrote in July in an attempt to end the audit committee’s continuing investigation of these matters, the proper thing to do was to point out the issue to the Chair, the LNC, and the delegates; and not have continued, at least what seemed to me to be, a power struggle with no good end.

    I agree.

  255. paulie Post author

    I’m rambling, so I’ll stop (wasting my own time here, after a year away), except to say, I hope something I wrote above is useful to you (or somebody!)

    Absolutely. Thank you!

    Again, with gratitude for your sharing both the meeting AND your unique (and nearly unique) insights,

    Thanks and likewise!

  256. paulie Post author

    Why? Because it seems to me a fundamental “culture of dishonesty” has wasted my money, and was, at least before I resigned from the audit committee, wasting my time as well.

    Transparency, caring and involvement and more bottom up participation in keeping leadership honest would help.

    Disbanding? I doubt that would help. I don’t think that things would be better if we did not exist. Though changes should be made.

    And not everything is necessarily correctly attributed to malice. Sometime people are sincerely just trying to do the right thing and, for example, don’t remember to keep receipts. I’m not saying whether there was malice or not, but sometimes people here just assume there was and don’t even consider that there may or may not have been.

  257. Joe

    Paulie,

    “Disbanding? I doubt that would help”

    What helps, what always helps, is competition and free markets. This kind of thing would not be going on if there were efficient alternatives — there are alternatives, they’re just not as efficient (yet). Root left, apparently, for the Republican Liberty caucus. Rand Paul could represent a real challenge to whoever the LP nominates in 2016, but there are also other organizations competing for that $25 in annual dues, or where I might rather spend travel money than to an LNC meeting or convention (why not Libertopia, Porcfest, Burning Man, or Freedom’s Phoenix?)

    But the bigger problem, IMO, is the apparent lack of consciousness of competition on the part of the LNC. There are other places libertarians can put their money, if not quite as many where they can put their votes.

    There’s also a pattern here of unclear invoices, lack of documentation and the misrepresentation of flat payments as “commissions on what was raised.”

    For example:

    “This letter is prompted by the (Federal Election) Commissions preliminary review of the report(s) referenced above (30 Day Post-General Report (10/1/00 – 11/27/00). The review raised questions concerning certain information contained in the above report(s). An itemization follows:

    “- Your report discloses a debt owed to Michael Cloud with an outstanding beginning balance of $0.00. The previous report filed by our committee discloses a closing balance of $25,000. These amounts should be the same. Please correct this discrepancy and file an amendment to your report(s).
    . . .

    “Michael H. Young
    Senior Reports Analyst
    Reports Analysis Division”

    No amendment was (apparently) filed.

    From July 26, 2001

    “This letter is to inform you that as of July 25, 2001 the (Federal Election) Commission has not received your response to our request for additional information, dated July 3, 2001.

    . . . .

    “If you have any questions regarding this matter, please contact Michael Young on our toll free number 800 424 9530 . . . or 202 694 1130.

    “John D. Gibson
    Assistant Staff Director
    Reports Analysis Division”

    The above can be found by:

    1) Going to:

    http://www.fec.gov/finance/disclosure/candcmte_info.shtml

    2) Entering C00347070

    3) Clicking on the clickable link that shows up with that number under “ID”

    4) Clicking the tab for FILINGS

    5) Clicking the PDF for “RFAI – Second Notice – Post-General” dated July 26 2001.”

    or here:

    http://docquery.fec.gov/cgi-bin/fecimg/?_21037221056%200

    But more than that (ancient history) is the black hole of “political advisers” in the GJ2012 campaign reports.

    “And not everything is necessarily correctly attributed to malice. Sometime people are sincerely just trying to do the right thing and, for example, don’t remember to keep receipts. ”

    I’m not claiming malice here either, but come on!

    As a parent of four fairly decent kids (understatement, IMO; one in Med School, another the valedictorian, full scholarships, etc) I NEVER accepted “I didn’t meaaaaaannnn tooooooo” as a valid explanation!

    (well, at least not more than once per kid.)

    So I sent you $20 on paypal to your email. Got at least that much value from your work on IPR over the past few weeks I’ve been back. AND I wanted to see how that works. Might find a way to do something worthy of being on the receiving end sometime.

    🙂

  258. paulie Post author

    This kind of thing would not be going on if there were efficient alternatives — there are alternatives, they’re just not as efficient (yet). Root left, apparently, for the Republican Liberty caucus. Rand Paul could represent a real challenge to whoever the LP nominates in 2016, but there are also other organizations competing for that $25 in annual dues, or where I might rather spend travel money than to an LNC meeting or convention (why not Libertopia, Porcfest, Burning Man, or Freedom’s Phoenix?)

    Valuable and important questions!

    I believe both the Libertarian part and the Party part of Libertarian Party are both important. And we are the only organization that is both, tiny libertarian-like splinter parties aside. So we do fill a unique niche.

    I believe that niche is an important part of a multifaceted freedom movement, and that without it the liberty movement will be much less effective without a libertarian party.

    And I believe that it requires some coordination on the national level, although I also want to see more bottom up action happening.

  259. paulie Post author

    But the bigger problem, IMO, is the apparent lack of consciousness of competition on the part of the LNC. There are other places libertarians can put their money, if not quite as many where they can put their votes.

    There’s consciousness of competition. What there is not is lack of knowing how to make ourselves be all we should be. I’ve asked everyone here this many times, but imagine what you would do or say if you were on LNC. I mean concretely, not in a general sense. When you see the draft budget what specific amendments would you propose? How would you answer each and every message on the LNC list? Which ones would you answer and which ones would you ignore? You can do all this now due to the transparency efforts this term, yet I get very, very little help with all that and I have asked quite a few times.

    Put yourself concetely in the position of an LNC member. What motions would you make? Would they be in order? What arguments would you make on their behalf?

    It’s easy to expect people to know how to get from here to where you want us to be.. much harder to be in that position and actually knowing how to make it happen.

  260. paulie Post author

    There’s also a pattern here of unclear invoices, lack of documentation and the misrepresentation of flat payments as “commissions on what was raised.”

    Yes, there is. And it is possible that it is malicious. Or, maybe some people are just chronically sloppy record keepers. I honestly don’t know, although may have both my hopes and my suspicions.

    As far as what we do about it? Transparency. Open bidding. Clear contracts and receipts and transparency on those. Open channels of communication. Willingness to listen and learn on both ends. .I don’t know a better way. Maybe there is. But that’s the best answers I can think of.

  261. Kevin Knedler

    $25 or $50 or $100 or higher. All good but a basic member is somebody that signs the LP Pledge. That does NOT require any contribution of dollars. At very least the LP Convention should require that everyone in a business meeting has signed the LP Pledge–at minimum. Afterall, it is a national convention. I realize that each state has it’s own rules to be a delegate at the national convention ( Ohio delegation– Ohio citizens must sign the LP Pledge and have voted in the LP Ohio Primary to be a member of Ohio. We try to eliminate GOP and DEM and other card-carrying party members from being in our delegation). We want people to pick a team and stick with us–especially in a volunteer organization. It was frankly shocking and demoralizing to hear people stand up at the National Convention and proclaim they were a Republican. For the record, I have little use for Republicans–especially in Ohio.

  262. paulie Post author

    So I sent you $20 on paypal to your email.

    Awesome. Thank you!

    Maybe it will even start a trend.

    Of course it would take a hell of a lot of those to make this pay for itself, much less support me so I can give it enough time and not have to do someting completely different that might preclude me from doing this.

    Might find a way to do something worthy of being on the receiving end sometime.

    You already have!

    Does your email work the same way? If so, I can send you half of it back. Or forward, or whatever.

  263. paulie Post author

    But more than that (ancient history) is the black hole of “political advisers” in the GJ2012 campaign reports.

    Agreed. That is as opaque as you can legally get, if not more so, and the antithesis of how we should be.

    Even if it was not a legal requirement, if I was a donor or potential donor, I would love to know in detail where the money is going. If I felt confident in that I would be a lot more likely to donate or donate more.

  264. Thomas Knapp

    One thing that’s important to keep in mind vis a vis “winning elections” is that national committees almost always have very little effect on those outcomes, and what effect they have is almost always negative.

    Among those few voters who could actually tell you that Reince Priebus is chair of the RNC or Debbie Wasserman-Schulz is chair of the DNC, most of them would only know that because the two parties make fun of each others’ national leadership and the stupid things their national committee leaders do.

    I don’t know that it’s possible for the LP to win elections on a regular and improviing/increasing basis, but if it is the LNC will almost certainly be an impediment to, not a leading force in, that process. How much of an impediment depends on how much power and party credibility LP members put in the LNC. The more the worse. And that’s not just because the LNC is messed up. It’s because national committees aren’t where elections are won.

  265. Stewart Flood

    The national party serves one purpose: as the vehicle for the state parties to get together to nominate presidential candidates. Disbanding it would only hurt state and local efforts.

    The DNC and RNC are also used to raise vast sums of money to keep their puppets in power. The LP does have some puppets, but none of them are in power outside of the party infrastructure.

    What really bothers me is the snippet above referencing an earlier FEC issue involving Mr Cloud. I was not aware of his involvement (or any other details), so this is especially disturbing.

    How many of us who were delegates in 2012 have to sign a petition to take it to the JC and remove him for misconduct?

  266. Shane

    Tom, on the other national parties, they play a significant role in helping elect their candidates. That’s undeniable. Maintaining and making available the voter databases alone is a multi-million dollar project.

    Look at the NRCC and the tens of millions in ads they run year round.

    You’re right in that few voters know who chairs or runs these organizations, and that’s a great thing as that means they are putting their focus (and money) on candidates.

    In contrast, members of the LP can probably name the chair/ED but couldn’t name a candidate.

  267. Thomas Knapp

    Shane,

    Yes, the national committees maintain voter databases, and yes, that is a not insignificant thing.

    I was probably not very clear on the point I’m trying to make: To the extent that a national committee — ANY national committee — plays a highly public role in a party’s operations, that role is almost always going to be a negative one.

    The LNC plays the most highly public role in the LP’s operations. I’m not saying that if the LNC stopped playing such a high-profile public role the LP would magically start winning elections. But I am saying that unless the LNC stops playing the lead role in the LP, there’s absolutely no chance of the LP starting to win elections, for several reasons.

    If the LNC did a decent job of organizing the biennial national convention (“decent” would include not trying to make delegates subsidize other people’s circus/show preferences) and handled load rebalancing on ballot access operations (because it’s harder than it should be in some states to the extent that even a strong state party can’t go it alone), and otherwise sat the fuck down and shut the fuck up, the LP would be in much better shape.

  268. Shane

    Gotcha, Tom. We’re on the same page.

    There is a great deal the LNC could do on a shoestring budget to help candidates. Instead, the LNC keeps its doors open and the sideshow going. If it weren’t for Redpath, ballot access would not even be an issue.

  269. Kevin Knedler

    Shane. “Bingo”

    Also, I remember the day in April 2006, when I met Mr. Bill Redpath and he started to talk about Ohio ballot access and I said, “what is that”. Seriously, I didn’t know or understand. Three court battles later, I think I understand — LOL.

  270. Michael H. Wilson

    I get a bit puzzled when I read about Libertarians running for office as if that is the only way to change the laws for the better.

    There are twelve months in a year and in most election years only three of those months are campaign months. Unfortunately the government still operates in those other nine months. And also unfortunately Libertarians don’t seem to put much effort into focusing on the need or opportunity make an effort to change the laws during the other nine months.

    City Councils, County Commissioners and State legislatures all meet during these other nine months and provide plenty of opportunities for Libertarians to propose and testify on legislation.

    Focusing on political campaigns as a way to change the political culture is a great idea but that should not be the only focus of the party and from I have read in this thread it seems to be the one idea many people are concerned about while they ignore the other opportunities.

  271. Shane

    Lol, and Kevin, Redpath would be doing that regardless of his role with the LNC as he is truly dedicated much like Winger.

    We could all learn from that and choose something we could impact and just do it rather than waiting on the LNC to think about it.

  272. Shane

    Michael, I agree with you but don’t think we need a party for legislative action. I’m involved daily with lobbying efforts of my C4 clients and then stir up trouble on my own in city council meetings and with lawsuits, FOIA’s, etc.

    What I can do on my own would require from the party four LNC meetings, six EC meetings, twelve fundraising letters, 48 debates on IPR and a partridge in a pear tree.

  273. Michael H. Wilson

    Thanks for the comment Shane and I agree we don’t need the party. However, if I am promoting the idea of opening the urban transit market, which we am doing, it also helps to have candidates talking about the same issues when they are out campaigning.

    The party also helps to bring together people who can discuss, research and promote different ideas. The party should have a legislative agenda that the candidates can promote and that the members can work on when campaigns are not in season.

  274. Shane

    Good point. There are plenty of orgs that do that on the national and state level. What I’ve found is that you can produce biggest effect in dealing in your own locality — and if we had strong local parties, that would be a tremendous resource.

    As Montoni pointed out in an earlier article on IPR, I’m having issues with the regional structure in my area. I don’t feel regional organizing creates as strong a a bond with participants. I guess it’s up to me to create a county-level party.

    The biggest impact I’ve been part of is by working with a small group that does undercover investigative journalism. We found that dealing local, on national issues, makes a big splash that works its way to the national level. We changed voter ID legislation, prompted a vote to defund NPR and their latest project unveiled the incompetence of Obamacare navigators.

    That type of activism isn’t for everyone, but it shows that a handful of people with a small budget can make an impact.

    Locally organized groups can create lasting change. If that means taking advantage of the LP’s organization, great. But currently, there isn’t much to take advantage of at least in my area.

  275. paulie Post author

    One thing that’s important to keep in mind vis a vis “winning elections” is that national committees almost always have very little effect on those outcomes, and what effect they have is almost always negative.

    Among those few voters who could actually tell you that Reince Priebus is chair of the RNC or Debbie Wasserman-Schulz is chair of the DNC, most of them would only know that because the two parties make fun of each others’ national leadership and the stupid things their national committee leaders do.

    I don’t know that it’s possible for the LP to win elections on a regular and improviing/increasing basis, but if it is the LNC will almost certainly be an impediment to, not a leading force in, that process. How much of an impediment depends on how much power and party credibility LP members put in the LNC. The more the worse. And that’s not just because the LNC is messed up. It’s because national committees aren’t where elections are won.

    We’re not the Democrats and Republicans – although to a lesser degree I would disagree about them as well. For example, I believe the change in DNC policy to a 50 state, run everywhere strategy a few years ago made a huge difference for them.

    For the LP it is an even bigger deal. A competently run national party could do a lot to transform a very disorganized party that is still known (especially in any detail) by very few people into one that is better organized and recognized at all levels. All sorts of things have an impact – from direct candidate recruitment, to ballot access help, to teaching how to recruit candidates, to recruiting candidate teams and teaching how to recruit and manage those to same for state and local parties to dozens of other things that a national party can be doing. Man state and local parties can’t even maintain a database, much less come up with recruitment materials or recruit candidates. At times they simply go defunct and national can step in to create new chapters, etc. There are hundreds of other things I did not mention.

  276. paulie Post author

    The national party serves one purpose: as the vehicle for the state parties to get together to nominate presidential candidates.

    I don’t think that is the only purpose. For example, the national LP from the mid 90s to the early 2000s did a lot to grow the party relative to ever since then, and that manifested itself at the local evels as well which in turn had an impact on national – synergy in both directions. Or you could have them getting in each other’s way, it all depends.

    Disbanding it would only hurt state and local efforts.

    That part I agree with.

    How many of us who were delegates in 2012 have to sign a petition to take it to the JC and remove him for misconduct?

    Someone here probably knows more than me. However my understanding is that the JC is empowered to judge actions of the LNC as a whole, not individual members, and that inaction (for example, falure to remove a member) is not something that can be appealed to JC. Someone can correct that if I am wrong.

  277. Thomas Knapp

    “I believe the change in DNC policy to a 50 state, run everywhere strategy a few years ago made a huge difference for them.”

    And you believe correctly. But that change was driven from outside the DNC, by Howard Dean’s presidential campaign and the grassroots org he built out of that campaign. Granted, the Democrats had the brains to put him in charge at DNC in 2005, but that was just the cherry on top for him — the strategy was already being implemented. And in fact it’s not entirely unreasonable to claim that he got put in at DNC precisely to get him in a place where he wouldn’t be so powerful and effective — basically, so he could be co-opted, even if that came at the expense of his winning strategy.

    Ditto for the 1994 “Republican Revolution,” also a 50-state strategy. That didn’t come out of RNC, it came from an ambitious young Georgia congresscritter, Newt Gingrich. He traded his laurels in for the House speakership instead of the RNC chair gig.

    Yes, there are a lot of things that LNC can do. The problem is, it does them badly — and the fact that it is doing them at all nips in the bud the process through which other groups might take the initiative to do them well.

    For decades, libertarians have been preaching the virtues of decentralization, all the while maintaining a governance model that resembles the behemoth corporations slowly sliding toward insolvency as they get their asses whipped by adroit entrepreneurs.

    Those behemoths are getting their asses whipped despite the fact that they can tap a vast reservoir of political privilege to make it hard on their new competitors. The LNC doesn’t have that kind of help at its disposal — in fact, it’s on the other side of that see-saw.

    Once again, I’m not saying that reforming the LNC into a working organization would produce a miraculous transformation in the LP’s prospects. It might not. But that doesn’t change the fact that the LNC as it exists is a barrier to, not a facilitator of, such a transformation IF one is possible at all.

  278. Jill Pyeatt

    I’m disappointed that we don’t have some kind of resolution of the Cloud/Howell affair, but I do recognize that it was most likely dealt with because of the long executive session Saturday afternoon. Somehow, many members of the LNC were convinced it was okay for Cloud to keep the money and remain on the committee. Is it unreasonable to ask for some kind of statement as to WHY?. Whether they wanted it to or not, the problem and questionable invoices were made public, and I don’t believe this was a “personnel” issue worthy of privacy.

    Or, is it possible they all want to be voted off the committee?

  279. Stewart Flood

    That is why my “Assuming we even can…” was added at the end. We shouldn’t have to be even thinking about it. The LNC should have taken action this weekend.

    I know that there were probably a thousand reasons given in executive session for not taking action. I know that you can’t even confirm or deny that even one reason was given to act or not act, since the entire “trial” took place behind closed doors.

    As far as the work being worth the amount paid for it, the answer is clear and was stated by staff: the response rate to his mailings was below the level normally expected (paraphrasing their answer).

    But…as far as acting or not acting goes…there was a motion to have him return the money. It failed. That CAN BE APPEALED to the JC since the motion was action! (the precedent for this being the 2010-2012 term appeal to the JC of a non-action by the LNC)

    So the failure of the motion to pass could be appealed.

    Should it be appealed? I think Mr Cloud needs to learn a lesson. He knows he cheated the party and he currently believes that he’s gotten away with it.

    Will it be appealed? Not enough people care about this enough to take action.

  280. paulie Post author

    Tom, on the other national parties, they play a significant role in helping elect their candidates. That’s undeniable. Maintaining and making available the voter databases alone is a multi-million dollar project.

    True. And that is just one of many examples you can bring up. Here’s another, and there are many others still. As Mike Kane wrote on a recent thread:

    Regarding fundraising/email testing etc. I’ve researched extensively into how the democrats used technology to win Obama the election in 2012 (and how he raised more money than the LP can dream of raising). I’ll include that information below, and have even considered starting a PAC to faciliate similar efforts, however I have chosen not to for the meantime at least. The fundamental issue with an undertaking like this is that it requires hiring some of the best and brightest tech minds in the industry, and hope to pay them below what their worth because they believe in the cause.

    Thanks for reading

    —————————————
    It’s ironic that the campaign apparatus with the least libertarian policy prescriptions ran the most libertarian political organization in history. Even the very structure of their organization was based on the principles of decentralization and empowering individuals. I think the Libertarian Party would be wise to learn from their successes.

    Here’s the video of Teddy Goff spilling the beans on how the dems won the election
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uk0quEECLQA – 386 views on youtube — how disappointing.

    http://www.cnn.com/2012/11/07/tech/web/obama-campaign-tech-team/index.html

    http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2012/11/jim_messina_offers_his_tips_on_how_barack_obama_s_campaign_team_beat_mitt.html

    Email Specific

    http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-11-29/the-science-behind-those-obama-campaign-e-mails

    http://blog.kissmetrics.com/email-marketing-lessons-obama/

    http://www.marketingsherpa.com/article/case-study/obama-email-campaign-testing#

    http://blog.optimizely.com/how-obama-raised-60-million-by-running-an-exp

    http://www.klaviyo.com/blog/2012/11/06/re-hey-an-analysis-obamaromney-emails/ – Interesting analysis about who the emails actually come from

    http://www.breakingcopy.com/obama-campaign-email-subject-lines/ – older article but still good

    http://swampland.time.com/2012/11/07/inside-the-secret-world-of-quants-and-data-crunchers-who-helped-obama-win/2/

    http://www.copyblogger.com/email-marketing-that-works-2/ interesting article, maybe can incorporate more emotional string pulling in emails.

    Metrics Specific

    Or take an example from our own party:

    Arvin Vohra created the doc: "Candidate Pledges"

    Sign below by writing your name, what your’re running for, and the district. If you have been nominated by your state party, write (Nominated) after your name. Multiple candidates can, and should, sign the same pledge!

    FEDERAL PLEDGES

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to cut spending to 1992 levels, eliminate the Federal income tax, and abolish the IRS.

    Arvin Vohra, MD-4, Candidate for U.S. Congress (Nominated)

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to end the War on Drugs, release all victimless drug “criminals” from prison, abolish the DEA, and cut taxes accordingly.

    Arvin Vohra, MD-4, Candidate for U.S. Congress (Nominated)

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to abolish the NSA, consolidate our 18 spy agencies into one acocuntable agency, and cut taxes accordingly.

    Arvin Vohra, MD-4, Candidate for U.S. Congress (Nominated)

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to cut military spending by 60% or more, and cut taxes accordingly.

    Arvin Vohra, MD-4, Candidate for U.S. Congress (Nominated)

    STATE PLEDGES (Feel free to add new ones!)

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to end all mandatory schooling laws, and allow parents to choose the best education for their children – including private tutors, homeschool, religious schools, nonreligious schools, and learning centers.

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to repeal all restrictions on firearm ownership, carry, and defensive use.

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to eliminate the state income tax.

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to eliminate the state sales tax.

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to eliminate the state property tax.

    LOCAL PLEDGES

    Sign below by writing your name, what your’re running for, and the district. If you have been nominated by your state party, write (Nominated) after your name.

    FEDERAL PLEDGES

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to cut spending to 1992 levels, eliminate the Federal income tax, and abolish the IRS.

    Arvin Vohra, MD-4, Candidate for U.S. Congress (Nominated)

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to end the War on Drugs, release all victimless drug “criminals” from prison, abolish the DEA, and cut taxes accordingly.

    Arvin Vohra, MD-4, Candidate for U.S. Congress (Nominated)

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to abolish the NSA, consolidate our 18 spy agencies into one acocuntable agency, and cut taxes accordingly.

    Arvin Vohra, MD-4, Candidate for U.S. Congress (Nominated)

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to cut military spending by 60% or more, and cut taxes accordingly.

    STATE PLEDGES (Feel free to add new ones!)

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to end all mandatory schooling laws, and allow parents to choose the best education for their children – including private tutors, homeschool, religious schools, nonreligious schools, and learning centers.

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to repeal all restrictions on firearm ownership, carry, and defensive use.

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to eliminate the state income tax.

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to eliminate the state sales tax.

    If elected, I will sponsor legislation to eliminate the state property tax.

    LOCAL PLEDGES

    (more being worked on)
    (design team can create designs to go with these)

    This effort is just starting, but what we want to do eventually is have hundreds (or in the future many more than that) LP candidates signing many such pledges, creating new ones, design teams creating the memes, using FB and other means to spread them. All that activity will directly or indirectly lead to many other people becoming future candidates, volunteering with campaigns in various ways, etc. And many other aspect of what national parties do (or should do) ties in to it.

  281. paulie Post author

    Look at the NRCC and the tens of millions in ads they run year round.

    You’re right in that few voters know who chairs or runs these organizations, and that’s a great thing as that means they are putting their focus (and money) on candidates.

    In contrast, members of the LP can probably name the chair/ED but couldn’t name a candidate.

    Exactly.

  282. paulie Post author

    I was probably not very clear on the point I’m trying to make: To the extent that a national committee — ANY national committee — plays a highly public role in a party’s operations, that role is almost always going to be a negative one.

    The LNC plays the most highly public role in the LP’s operations. I’m not saying that if the LNC stopped playing such a high-profile public role the LP would magically start winning elections. But I am saying that unless the LNC stops playing the lead role in the LP, there’s absolutely no chance of the LP starting to win elections, for several reasons.

    If the LNC did a decent job of organizing the biennial national convention (“decent” would include not trying to make delegates subsidize other people’s circus/show preferences) and handled load rebalancing on ballot access operations (because it’s harder than it should be in some states to the extent that even a strong state party can’t go it alone), and otherwise sat the fuck down and shut the fuck up, the LP would be in much better shape.

    I don’t agree. I think there are many more things the LNC could do to help make the party more effective at all levels. I have mentioned a small fraction of them.

    That doesn’t mean I believe we have been very effective, or that I have been very efective in pushing this agenda on the LNC (I haven’t been. I think I generally get ignored).

    But would we better off without what the LNC does already do? NO, I think we would be organizationally more like the Greens and CP, and I think we are organizationally better than they are.

  283. paulie Post author

    There is a great deal the LNC could do on a shoestring budget to help candidates

    I agree. If you have ideas for specific motions and suggestions I can make please let me know. And I do mean specific.

  284. Thomas Knapp

    “Not enough people care about this enough to take action.”

    That may or may not be true (it’s possible that activists could get a drive up with sufficient steam to get an appeal to the Judicial Committee with a lot of work), but there are other factors involved.

    The main other factor is that the LNC has something of a “cowardice culture” regarding scandal. It’s very hard to get them to face up to something wrong having been done and call the people responsible for it to account because “what will people think?” Better — and usually reasonably easy — to just bury it.

    In the case of this particular issue, a couple of the problems are:

    – Just because the LP votes “to have Michael Cloud pay the money back,” that doesn’t mean Cloud will do it. In order to compel him to do it against his will, they’d have to take him to court. Which trips the “what will people think?” meter well into the red.

    – There’s a big pile of dirt in the closet where “matters pertaining to both Michael Cloud and the LNC” are kept. While it’s unlikely that seeing this incident through would unleash a real review with teeth of events going back at least as far as 15-20 years ago (probably longer — I’m limiting the claim to incidents that I personally remember from my own time in the LP), it’s just possible. And it’s even something approaching likely that stirring things up would bring those events back into current LP folklore, which in turn would damage the credibility of not just Cloud, but several other people who’d rather all that was forgotten.

    The problem with hosting a leech is that the longer you let it suck your blood,the fatter it gets and the more embarrassing that makes it to have to pull it off in public.

  285. paulie Post author

    I get a bit puzzled when I read about Libertarians running for office as if that is the only way to change the laws for the better.

    There are twelve months in a year and in most election years only three of those months are campaign months. Unfortunately the government still operates in those other nine months. And also unfortunately Libertarians don’t seem to put much effort into focusing on the need or opportunity make an effort to change the laws during the other nine months.

    City Councils, County Commissioners and State legislatures all meet during these other nine months and provide plenty of opportunities for Libertarians to propose and testify on legislation.

    Focusing on political campaigns as a way to change the political culture is a great idea but that should not be the only focus of the party and from I have read in this thread it seems to be the one idea many people are concerned about while they ignore the other opportunities.

    We should absolutely focus on that other stuff. On the other hand we may want to do so as a parallel organization or organizations that are nonpartisan, for a variety of reasons.

  286. paulie Post author

    Lol, and Kevin, Redpath would be doing that regardless of his role with the LNC as he is truly dedicated much like Winger.

    How would Bill get in touch with all these locals and how would they get in touch with him? Where would his budget to help them come from?

    We could all learn from that and choose something we could impact and just do it rather than waiting on the LNC to think about it.

    Just do it.

    Well, to take an example, I came up with (or reignited) an idea to have reusable candidate pledges created and distributed. That is just started. We have already done a lot with the national FB page, over 430k likes, and distributing and creating these kinds of candidate memes as well as party memes. But up til now there was no clear process for candidates to come up with the language, for example. If they knew the right people or were good at crafting these pledges they could do it themselves. If they were also good at design they could make the memes themselves. If I was good at all those things I could do it for them. Where woud any of us get a page with 430k and growing likes for distribution? Or the smaller pages that work behind the scenes on the ideas and designs? Could I do that by myself? Probably not.

  287. paulie Post author

    Michael, I agree with you but don’t think we need a party for legislative action. I’m involved daily with lobbying efforts of my C4 clients and then stir up trouble on my own in city council meetings and with lawsuits, FOIA’s, etc.

    What I can do on my own would require from the party four LNC meetings, six EC meetings, twelve fundraising letters, 48 debates on IPR and a partridge in a pear tree.

    Yep.

  288. paulie Post author

    Thanks for the comment Shane and I agree we don’t need the party. However, if I am promoting the idea of opening the urban transit market, which we am doing, it also helps to have candidates talking about the same issues when they are out campaigning.

    The party also helps to bring together people who can discuss, research and promote different ideas. The party should have a legislative agenda that the candidates can promote and that the members can work on when campaigns are not in season.

    That’s the other side of it, yes.

  289. paulie Post author

    Good point. There are plenty of orgs that do that on the national and state level. What I’ve found is that you can produce biggest effect in dealing in your own locality — and if we had strong local parties, that would be a tremendous resource.

    Good national party could do a lot to help strengthen good local parties and vice versa.

  290. paulie Post author

    Yes, there are a lot of things that LNC can do. The problem is, it does them badly — and the fact that it is doing them at all nips in the bud the process through which other groups might take the initiative to do them well.

    Maybe. I’m open to the idea of creating those other organization(s).

  291. paulie Post author

    But…as far as acting or not acting goes…there was a motion to have him return the money. It failed. That CAN BE APPEALED to the JC since the motion was action! (the precedent for this being the 2010-2012 term appeal to the JC of a non-action by the LNC)

    So the failure of the motion to pass could be appealed.

    You may be right but I don’t know.. Can not passing a motion be appealed to JC?

    Will it be appealed? Not enough people care about this enough to take action.

    I would not assume that. Yu may or may not be right.

  292. Shane

    From Knapp: “Once again, I’m not saying that reforming the LNC into a working organization would produce a miraculous transformation in the LP’s prospects. It might not. But that doesn’t change the fact that the LNC as it exists is a barrier to, not a facilitator of, such a transformation IF one is possible at all.”

    I think we’re all pretty much saying the same thing here. What are we going to do about it?

    The LNC has been doing the same thing with the same people and generating the same results for decades.

    It’s time to move past the LNC that focuses on micro-managing functions of the national office rather than political strategy and party building. LNC members stay busy with the fights, manufactured crises, and posturing — most of this is done intentionally to create a platform to run on for the next convention. Sadly, many of our LNC members, past and present, aren’t much different than the politicians we all despise.

    I’m not saying disband the LNC. A clean slate MAY have an impact, but after thinking about it, the same manipulators will find a way back in.

    Another option would be to have state chairs replace the LNC. Once a year meeting like the LSLA does with the management of staff handled by an executive committee elected at convention.

    For folks to have a voice on a state chair-controlled LNC, they will have to be state leaders, which takes a great deal more work in my opinion and the threshold for performance is significantly higher. If a state chair spent two years griping about a database or that the office’s rent is too damn high, they wouldn’t last long.

    The risk in that is most funds would be diverted to the states like with UMP and the national party would crumble — but that lesson would have to be learned.

    Paulie, you mentioned the growth before 2000. That was because we had an executive director who knew what he was doing with party growth — Dasbach. I don’t agree with some of the tactics but his strategy was sound. That growth was shutdown because of an LNC that had no clue what it was doing but wanted to micro-manage office operations. Some of those LNC members serve today and still don’t know what they’re doing.

    Change . . . in one form or another is necessary with the LNC. What’s the worst that could happen?

  293. paulie Post author

    I’m disappointed that we don’t have some kind of resolution of the Cloud/Howell affair, but I do recognize that it was most likely dealt with because of the long executive session Saturday afternoon.

    Can’t comment on that. There were some policy changes passed by email vote before the meeting to prevent future recurrences, and some but not all motions for reimbursement passed. Perhaps a motion for reimbursement of a smaller amount by Cloud would have passed, I don’t know. There may have been other actions but I can’t rememeber if any of them were in open session. There may be further action if there is enough outside pressure. Dunno.

    Is it unreasonable to ask for some kind of statement as to WHY?

    I would not assume either way, especially if you do not try.

    Whether they wanted it to or not, the problem and questionable invoices were made public, and I don’t believe this was a “personnel” issue worthy of privacy.

    There could potentially be legal liability under DC employment law. I can’t mention any details or say whether or not there would be.

    Or, is it possible they all want to be voted off the committee?

    Probably not consciously. For my own part I do not want to run again. Others – some do, some don’t, some may change their minds. Some will run and lose. Maybe all, but probably not. If they do will the replacements do better? Worse? We’ll see.

  294. Shane

    Paulie, on Ballot Access and Redpath, I think Redpath has been the driver for ballot access for years. Without him and his influence, I seriously doubt the LP would be dedicated as much time and money to it. I know you are deeply involved in Ballot Access as well, but let’s face it, Bill steps up the plate in ways that most of us cannot.

  295. paulie Post author

    Another option would be to have state chairs replace the LNC. Once a year meeting like the LSLA does with the management of staff handled by an executive committee elected at convention.

    Isn’t that the LNC?

    What’s the worst that could happen?

    Well, what happened when we had the last clean slate clean sweep at LNC? Around 2002 I think it was. How did the party do after that? Not that it couldn’t have been worse. There are other examples further back.

    As for micro managing office operations, are not many of the complaints on this thread that we have not done it enough?

  296. paulie Post author

    Paulie, on Ballot Access and Redpath, I think Redpath has been the driver for ballot access for years. Without him and his influence, I seriously doubt the LP would be dedicated as much time and money to it. I know you are deeply involved in Ballot Access as well, but let’s face it, Bill steps up the plate in ways that most of us cannot.

    My quesion was more, what could he do without LNC. And how. Where would his funding come from and how would it be raised. How would he and state/local/candidates get in touch with each other.

  297. Nicholas Sarwark

    How many of us who were delegates in 2012 have to sign a petition to take it to the JC and remove him for misconduct?

    As I recall, the LNC has the power to remove its own members. Judicial Committee can review that action and potentially reverse it, but cannot do an initial removal from the LNC.

  298. Stewart Flood

    “There’s a big pile of dirt in the closet where “matters pertaining to both Michael Cloud and the LNC” are kept.”

    If this is true, then we really do need to be aware of it. We shouldn’t be worried about “image” at this point. Again, if this is true, then we should be exposing the activity and removing them from office.

    Something didn’t “smell right” to me when we were working on the convention. I wasn’t aware of some of what was going on, and I’m sure that others on the LNC that term were not aware either. But someone was. Clearly the ED knew what was going on.

    What bothers me the most about this is that whether you agree with one side or the other (Starr Chamber vs everyone else, “radical vs non-radical”, or whatever other line you want to draw), most people who are active in the party do so at their own expense and as volunteers. We spend countless hours trying to accomplish the party’s goals (or in some cases the goals of a sub-segment of the party’s goals). When we have events like the current one and the one last term, where a member of the board abuses his position for personal gain — either in secret as Mr Cloud did or in the open as attempted in 2012 — then we have a serious problem.

    This type of corruption has to be eliminated. Unfortunately, corruption is the correct word to use.

  299. George Phillies

    You might find it of interest to read my book “Funding Liberty” from Third Millennium. I had planned to convert it to kindle this summer, but I see there is a need to advance more rapidly on this.

  300. Shane

    Paulie, not that’s not the LNC. It’s closer to the RNC’s structure. The failure of the GOP is with the structure of the NRCC (their largest committee). The politicians control the NRCC and an establishment culture is established.

    If LP members fail to have influence over the LNCC, the same thing will happen — or is happening.

  301. Outside looking in

    While we are on the topic, WHO is on the 2014 National Convention Committee. There is an oversight committee and there is a planning committee. Could be interesting. I think Sam Goldstein is on the Oversight. Nancy Neale is on the Planning. Who else?

  302. Andy

    “Shane December 16, 2013 at 1:07 pm
    Paulie, on Ballot Access and Redpath, I think Redpath has been the driver for ballot access for years.”

    Paul knows more about ballot access than Bill Redpath does.

    “Without him and his influence, I seriously doubt the LP would be dedicated as much time and money to it. ”

    The Libertarian Party has not had ballot access in all 50 states plus DC since the year 2000. That was 13 years ago.

  303. Stewart Flood

    Bill Redpath and Dr Lark are both perfect examples of activists who invest their time, as volunteers, and who also contribute heavily. In the six years I served on the LNC, I never found any reason to question their dedication.

    If we had about 30 more of them…

    So yes, Bill Redpath has been the driver. I will accept Andy’s statement that Paul knows more about [many aspects of] ballot access, but it takes a team and a leader. Bill Redpath has certainly led the charge within the party. This is not meant to discount Richard Winger’s involvement at all, but most people see him as a general champion and advocate of ballot access regardless of party affiliation.

    And maybe if we had about 30 more Richard Wingers and several dozen more of Paul and Andy…

  304. Andy

    Stewart Flood said: “I will accept Andy’s statement that Paul knows more about [many aspects of] ballot access, but it takes a team and a leader.”

    I’d say that Paul knows more about all aspects of ballot access as compared to Bill Redpath. The only person in the Libertarian Party who knows more about any aspect of ballot access than Paul is Richard Winger, and Richard Winger only knows more when it comes to the court rulings and certain aspects of the law, but he does not know more than Paul does when it comes to actually executing the ballot access drives.

    My knowledge about ballot access is about equal to Paul’s, and Richard Winger is the best person to go to for information about court rulings.

  305. paulie Post author

    Paul knows more about ballot access than Bill Redpath does.

    I know some aspects better, Bill knows some aspects better. It is possible that I could manage better or maybe not, I guess we would see if I was ever given that chance. I think there are some better ways of doing various things but I could turn out to be wrong, or maybe I would not manage multiple petitioners in multiple states at the same time as well. Maybe I would be better. It’s theoretical right now since I have not had to do it.

    Could I do as well if I had a full time day job with a lot of overtime and a wife, as well as being on the boards of other organizations? Maybe, maybe not. I don’t have those things so I don’t know. Could Bill do better if he took me up on my offer to help him? I think he could, but I could be wrong.

    Could I be as good at getting what I want from the LNC if I was trying to do it instead of Bill? I doubt that. I think he is much better at that than I am. But then maybe they would respect me a lot more if that was my role. Dunno.

    I do know that Bill himself made the point as have many others that no single person should ever be indespensible to an organization. People die, get ill, and so on. Sometimes unexpectedly. So I think it is a bad idea to put it all off on Bill and put ourselves in a position to be in serious trouble whenever the day comes that he is unwilling or unable to do what he does.

    I thought that was the idea of the Ballot Access Committee when it was created and why I was asked to be on it. Then I did not hear anything for a few months (despite asking). I was looking forward to doing what I thought was important and necessary work. The next thing I heard about it was that I was voted off the island and that the Ballot Access Committee would only concentrate on legal challenges to bad ballot access laws. No one even told who or how picked the chair of the committee – I was certainly never asked to vote on picking a chair, included in any discussion or anything else. I was asked to step down from it because I have been a ballot access contractor. But Ms. Visek, the committee chair, has also been a ballot access contractor, to a lesser degree than me, and we have other committees with LNC members who are also contractors. The latest report from the ballot access committee (not to be confused with Bill Redpath’s ballot access action report….maybe this one should be called the ballot access committee inaction report) is that the attorneys they have been trying to work with have been super busy so they have not had a chance to get much done as a committee.

    So Bill is still the “indespensible man” of ballot access, which is a big institutional problem for the LP.

  306. Shane

    That’s great Andy but when was the last time you influenced the LNC to put money into a drive, then raised or donated the money for the drive then coordinated all the folks from top to bottom to get it done?

    Moot point.

    You and Paul go out and get signatures and many times are compensated for that. That’s an important part of the process but in the end, one part.

  307. paulie Post author

    While we are on the topic, WHO is on the 2014 National Convention Committee. There is an oversight committee and there is a planning committee. Could be interesting. I think Sam Goldstein is on the Oversight. Nancy Neale is on the Planning. Who else?

    Am I the only one who knows how to find things on LP.org?

    Look at the top under “Our Party”

    Scroll down to bylaws mandated committees. Some of the info may be out of date.

    http://www.lp.org/bylaws-mandated-committees

    Credentials Committee

    LNC appointed:
    Beth Duensing (IN)
    Mike Kane (FL)
    Vicki Kirkland (FL)
    Steven Linnabary (OH)
    Emily Salvette (MI) interim chair
    LNC appointed alternates:
    Gary Johnson (TX)
    Scott Lieberman (CA)
    John Bowers (MN)
    California: TBD
    Texas: TBD
    Florida: TBD
    Ohio: Paul Hinds
    Ohio alternate: Don Kissick
    New York: TBD

    Awards Committee

    Michael Cloud
    James Lark
    William Redpath

    Convention Management Committee

    Nancy Neale, chair
    BetteRose Ryan
    Michael Cloud
    Kevin Knedler
    Nick Clayton

    Convention Oversight Committee

    Tim Hagan
    Sam Goldstein, chair
    Vicki Kirkland

    Convention Site Selection Committee

    TBD

    See the link above for what all the other committees are and who is on them, and contact LPHQ to update the info if it is out of date.

  308. paulie Post author

    Paulie, not that’s not the LNC.

    In what ways would your executive committee to oversee HQ staff be different?

    I guess because state chairs would be the only ones picking them rather than delegates?

    So it would be like an LNC made up only of region reps, but possibly elected at large? Although in our region (dunno about others) the delegates pick the region reps also.

    Also I guess it would be smaller than the curent LNC?

  309. Joe

    2014 Libertarian Platform Committee Contact Information

    01) Joe Buchman (Interim Chair)
    2014libertarianplatform @ gmail . com

    02) Sarah Bales (CA)

    03) Laura Delhomme (VA)

    04) John Fockler (OH)

    05) Sam Goldstein (At Large)

    06) Mark Grannis (At Large)

    07) Joe Hauptmann (At Large)

    08) Brian Holtz (At Large)

    09) Lynn House (At Large)

    10) Nathan Kleffman (TX)

    11) Andy Lecureaux (MI)

    12) Chris Maden (IL)
    crism @ maden . org

    13) Alicia Mattson (GA)

    14) Roy Minet (PA)

    15) Travis Nicks (At Large)

    16) Christian Padgett (NY)

    17) Tom Rhodes (FL)

    18) Debbie Schum (At Large)

    19) Rebecca Sink-Burris (At Large)

    20) Dianna Visek (At Large)

    ALTERNATES

    Henry Haller (Alternate, PA)

    Ann Leech (Alternate, OH)

    Ken Prazak (Alternate, IL)

    John Wayne Smith (Alternate, At Large)

    Starchild (Alternate, At Large)
    RealReform @ earthlink . net
    415 625 FREE (3733)

    Aaron Starr (Alternate, CA)

    Robert asked Eric to update this about 10 days ago. Hopefully the lp.org site will have that soon

  310. paulie Post author

    “Without him and his influence, I seriously doubt the LP would be dedicated as much time and money to it. ”

    The Libertarian Party has not had ballot access in all 50 states plus DC since the year 2000. That was 13 years ago.

    These are not contradicting statements.

  311. Joe

    Paulie,

    [Might find a way to do something worthy of being on the receiving end sometime.]

    “You already have!”

    Thanks. But I was thinking of other volunteer work that I do, specifically a scholarship at the University of Utah that Cindy and I have funded in the memory of radio talk pioneer, Herb Jepko. I’d like to get my email address for that website @nitecaps.set capable of accepting paypal.

    “Does your email work the same way? If so, I can send you half of it back. Or forward, or whatever.”

    I read through all the FAQs on PayPal and am left confused. How did you get yours set up to be able to do that? And how do you get the money out? Does it show up as a credit on a bank card of some sort?

    (realizing this is way off topic, but also a good thing to post here to remind others that you can accept paypal donations (click “send money to a friend” and then just enter Paulie’s email) and that I tried this and it works!)

    Joe

  312. paulie Post author

    I read through all the FAQs on PayPal and am left confused. How did you get yours set up to be able to do that? And how do you get the money out? Does it show up as a credit on a bank card of some sort?

    As far as I can remember just go to sign up (next to login). You then have to also register a bank account for the money to come in and out of or sign up for paypal card (I did not do the latter).

    https://www.paypal.com/webapps/setup-paypal-account/onboarding?execution=e2s2

    (realizing this is way off topic, but also a good thing to post here to remind others that you can accept paypal donations (click “send money to a friend” and then just enter Paulie’s email) and that I tried this and it works!)

    I don’t think it is too way off topic. Being at these events to provide this coverage which sparked this discussion costs money. Thank you for your help, and for the reminder to others. Also for trying to get here last weekend.

  313. Joe

    Paulie,

    “Also for trying to get here last weekend.”

    I think Starchild got more done at our meeting in Phoenix last weekend than in Dallas this weekend. James (a PhD in math and electrical engineering) got cornered by Starchild in the USAirways lounge. I was very impressed by his ability to make a convert, and with the literature he had at hand to give to prospective new Libertarians.

    James just emailed the following:

    “Next election I’ll be voting Libertarian. So, please make sure some really cool people are on the ballot!”

    I’ve vowed to always have some kind of LP handout ready for such moments. (All I had was my LP logo emblazoned golf shirt.) Starchild is a powerful one-on-one debater/enroller/”salesperson” (in the best sense of that). So while my wife clearly sees it as a waste of money, I had a terrific time in Phoenix.

  314. paulie Post author

    As far as the work being worth the amount paid for it, the answer is clear and was stated by staff: the response rate to his mailings was below the level normally expected (paraphrasing their answer).

    Where was this answer?

    But…as far as acting or not acting goes…there was a motion to have him return the money. It failed. That CAN BE APPEALED to the JC since the motion was action!

    What would be the argument that failing to pass that motion violated bylaws?

  315. Stewart Flood

    In one of the previous articles on IPR there were email messages included (I think it was one of the responses to the invoices by the audit committee) which mentioned comments from staff about the performance of Cloud’s work and why he was no longer being used.

    The motion being voted on is the action. The fact that it failed is on the record, and is therefore an act by the LNC to NOT demand that the money be returned. Any motion that fails for lack of a second, or that is withdrawn without a vote is not an action. This was an action, since it shows that the LNC accepts Cloud’s invoices without objecting. Trust me, it is an action.

  316. paulie Post author

    In one of the previous articles on IPR there were email messages included (I think it was one of the responses to the invoices by the audit committee) which mentioned comments from staff about the performance of Cloud’s work and why he was no longer being used.

    If anyone gets a chance to track that down please repost it in the comments here.

    This was an action, since it shows that the LNC accepts Cloud’s invoices without objecting. Trust me, it is an action.

    Don’t you also have to show that the action (voting down the motion) was a violation of bylaws to appeal to JC?

  317. paulie Post author

    In particular, I am interested in Bill Redpath’s ballot access report and budget, but whatever you report is helpful.

    I posted the report earlier and some verbal updates which I did my best to keep up with. Ballot access budget line as amended ended up being 119.7k

    It was originally 2.5 k higher than that in the budget. There was a vote to cut it down to about 106k which did not pass. I forgot how many votes, whether it was a roll call or who voted which way. Later there as a vote to cut it by 2.5k which did pass which is how we ended up with 119.7.

  318. Stewart Flood

    You show that voting down the motion was accepting the following:

    Fraudulent statement to the LNC regarding potential conflict of interest;
    Padded billing, with detail only added after the audit committee questioned it (showing more fraud);
    Claims (in the conflict discussion) that when he would be used he would charge a nominal rate, while his invoices show otherwise;
    Collusion with staff to falsify the invoices (changing invoices after they are paid is falsification)…

    That’s just the surface. He abdicated his fiduciary responsibility as a member of the board. He lied, on the record. Knowing this, the LNC has failed to even hold a vote to remove him. The fact that at least an attempt to recover the money was made shows me that SOMETHING was said in executive session indicating the money should be returned. I’ve been in executive sessions. I’d bet money that they know he’s guilty, but there isn’t enough political will on the board to do the right thing.

    They fear what removing a board member would look like to the media: Scandal; Money; Argh!!! (Publish articles would be using many more words)

    And the old scandals others have mentioned here would surface…

  319. Thomas L. Knapp

    “Don’t you also have to show that the action (voting down the motion) was a violation of bylaws to appeal to JC?”

    No. You just have to CLAIM that the action was a violation of the bylaws to appeal to the Judicial Committee. It’s the Judicial Committee’s job to decide whether or not your claim is true:

    “Upon appeal by ten percent of the delegates credentialed at the most recent Regular
    Convention or one percent of the Party sustaining members the Judicial Committee shall
    consider the question of whether or not a decision of the National Committee
    contravenes specified sections of the Bylaws. If the decision is vetoed by the Judicial
    Committee, it shall be declared null and void.”

    I’m not sure if such a case could be successfully argued. If so, it would probably be fairly indirect, e.g. that in failing to attempt to recover money that was illicitly disbursed, the LNC breached its fiduciary duties to the membership and/or violated its own duly (as allowed for in the bylaws) passed policies.

    But who knows? The Judicial Committee affirmed a power of the LNC to force convention delegates to subsidize circus fans, so they’re obviously pretty comfortable ranging far from the actual bylaws in their decisions.

  320. paulie Post author

    “Don’t you also have to show that the action (voting down the motion) was a violation of bylaws to appeal to JC?”

    No. You just have to CLAIM that the action was a violation of the bylaws to appeal to the Judicial Committee. It’s the Judicial Committee’s job to decide whether or not your claim is true:

    Sorry for the imprecise language. Which bylaws did the LNC as a whole violate by voting down the Cloud reimbursement motion?

    I suppose someone could file an appeal with any kind of claim, but then you have to prove which bylaws were violated and how.

  321. paulie Post author

    Stewart or anyone else: referencing specific language of the bylaws, can you cite which bylaws the LNC’s vote in this matter violated and how it did so?

  322. Thomas L. Knapp

    “Which bylaws did the LNC as a whole violate by voting down the Cloud reimbursement motion?”

    So far as I can tell, none. It’s not a case I’d want to have to argue.

    If I did have to argue it, though, I’d argue it as an indirect case and hang it on:

    1) The claim that if the LNC is going to enact policies as permitted in the bylaws, the LNC has an obligation to actually abide by/enforce those policies (my admittedly incomplete understanding of this case includes the notion that there were policies in place about how and under what conditions money could be disbursed and that those policies were violated — but I could be wrong on that); and

    2) That the bylaws are both underpinned by, and impose on LNC members, fiduciary obligations to the membership. If money is improperly disbursed, they’re supposed to do something about it. A motion was actually made in which a winning no vote constituted an action (open refusal to do their fiduciary duty).

  323. George Phillies

    With respect to ballot access knowledge, I go back to my position the last time I ran for national chair. It is irresponsible for a national party to say that they have a person they can ask about ballot access, as opposed to accumulating a central memory about ballot access. Why? What is the LNC’s working plan if B and R step out of the hotel and are run over by a truck? Hopefully this will not take place, but simply relying on a couple of people, neither of whom is getting any younger, is a bad idea.

  324. George Phillies

    Paulie writes “As for micro managing office operations, are not many of the complaints on this thread that we have not done it enough?”

    The LNC has passed several core financial responsibility rules, notably the contract and contract review rules. These are not “use only yellow for post-its” rules, these rules are core to the operation of the LNC. Do you have contracts? Supposedly the expenditures were approved in dribs and drabs via phone calls. Do you have memoranda of conversation? There should have been a letter or email confirming what was said verbally, passing one way or the other.

  325. George Phillies

    The useful point of voting against the new budget and its financial estimates is that the old budget numbers are smaller, in particular the growth of the staff gets a choke collar.

  326. paulie Post author

    The useful point of voting against the new budget and its financial estimates is that the old budget numbers are smaller, in particular the growth of the staff gets a choke collar.

    I think adding Art Di Bianca as an outside vendor is a good move, he makes Wes way more productive and I believe he will far more than pay for himself. Other than that I think staff remains the same.

    Paulie writes “As for micro managing office operations, are not many of the complaints on this thread that we have not done it enough?”

    This was in reply to a point by Shane, where he said the LNC micromanages staff too much. That seems to me to be in conflict with much of the criticism in this thead, which is directed at instances of LNC basically letting staff do whatever they want without much in the way of oversight. If LNC was micromanaging staff someone may have noticed the lack of contract issues and things of that nature. Maybe the LNC is simultaneously managing staff too much and too little?

    With respect to ballot access knowledge, I go back to my position the last time I ran for national chair. It is irresponsible for a national party to say that they have a person they can ask about ballot access, as opposed to accumulating a central memory about ballot access. Why? What is the LNC’s working plan if B and R step out of the hotel and are run over by a truck? Hopefully this will not take place, but simply relying on a couple of people, neither of whom is getting any younger, is a bad idea.

    That was my point. Thank you.

    I’m still trying to understand how Shane’s proposal for a restructured LNC/LSLA is different from what we have now.

    He calls for an LNC of state chairs that meets once a year and does what that the LSLA does not do now?

    Then an executive committee that oversees staff and is different from the current LNC in which ways?

    The two I could think of is that is EC may be smaller than the current LNC and may be chosen by state chairs rather than convention delegates. However neither was explicitly stated. Would either or both of these differences exist? Are there other differences?

  327. Andy

    “Shane December 16, 2013 at 3:45 pm
    That’s great Andy but when was the last time you influenced the LNC to put money into a drive, then raised or donated the money for the drive then coordinated all the folks from top to bottom to get it done?”

    I have done some fundraising, and I have also donated money to the Libertarian Party (at the national, state, and county level, and to Libertarian Party candidates as well).

    Have I raised hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars? No, well, not yet anyway.

    Have I donated hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars? No. Hopefully I will be wealthy enough to do that some day.

    I’m not rich, but I have donated money to the LP, and I’ve donated countless volunteer hours.

    Also, Paul and/or I have been driving forces to get several LP ballot access drives finished successfully.

    “You and Paul go out and get signatures and many times are compensated for that. That’s an important part of the process but in the end, one part.”

    Actually, Paul and I have done a lot more than just “go out and get signatures,” and both of us have also done volunteer signatures and volunteer voter registrations in addition to getting paid to do both.

  328. paulie Post author

    You are both right. We have done a lot more than just get signatures. But there are aspects of what Redpath does that we have never done. I believe we could, but we haven’t. The real issue is not Bill, or me, or you, or Richard Winger or any individual or small group thereof. It is that a national poitical party’s ballot access can not continue to be the sole responsibility of such a tiny group of people, much less one man. There has to be institutional knowledge and the ability to continue smoothly no matter what happens to any one or few volunteers or contractors.

    And as with fundraising, no bid no contract ballot access deals have to go. That principle is true regardless of whether I suffer or benefit from such deals.

  329. Andy

    “George Phillies December 16, 2013 at 7:20 pm
    With respect to ballot access knowledge, I go back to my position the last time I ran for national chair. It is irresponsible for a national party to say that they have a person they can ask about ballot access, as opposed to accumulating a central memory about ballot access. Why? What is the LNC’s working plan if B and R step out of the hotel and are run over by a truck? Hopefully this will not take place, but simply relying on a couple of people, neither of whom is getting any younger, is a bad idea.”

    This is a legitimate point, and is something that I’ve been saying for years as well. There needs to be institutional memory when it comes to ballot access, as well as other aspects of running a political party, and this institutional memory needs to be held by more than one or two people. I’d suggest writing up a manual which can be passed on to future LNC’s, state committees, etc…, and perhaps holding seminars on these things at state and national conventions. The manuals could be amended as new information becomes available and/or as information changes.

  330. Michael H. Wilson

    The institutional memory issue is something that needs to be promoted with all the state parties! And I purposely put that exclamation point in there.

  331. Stewart Flood

    Mr Knapp nailed it. That is almost exactly the argument I would make. There are procedures: it is called “The Policy Manual”, and board members and staff are required to follow it. The policy regarding contracts and vendors was knowingly violated. You can easily argue that Mr Cloud, as a board member, was required to know and follow the policy. The same goes for staff.

    Everyone has a copy, and everyone is expected to read and follow it.

  332. George Phillies

    @Dec 16 8:27 PM I believe that the increase in teh compensation budget over two years was over $100,000, wasn’t it? The LNC appears to have added Wes Benedict and kept Carla Howell, so there was an increase in staff size.

  333. George Phillies

    Are you saying there are “No Contract” ballot access deals? Who is approving these? I heartily agree on institutional knowledge. Every couple of years, my state committee discusses how ballot access works. We just voted to request that anyone running for Statewide office in MA — we do not appear to have anyone other than the gentleman who wants to run for Lieutenant Governor, which you cannot do without the other half of the ticket, should run as “Liberty” rather than “Libertarian”.

  334. Andy

    “And as with fundraising, no bid no contract ballot access deals have to go.”

    There was no such thing as monopoly contracts when it came to LP ballot access, well at least there was no such thing as monopoly contracts when it came to ballot access until Bill Redpath introduced this practice to ballot access drives last year in Pennsylvania and Oklahoma, and
    also South Dakota (South Dakota got finished, but it took a lot longer than necessary, and it is a hard state to screw up because it is one of the higher validity states; none of the people who worked there were Libertarians, and at least one was an alcoholic, and another was a registered sex offender). He tried to do the same in North Dakota when he sent all of the ballot access money to an individual with little experience and over-hyped credentials, as in he paid this person 100% of the money for a ballot access drive up front (a completely unheard of practice, even large ballot initiative proponents will pay a partial deposit, but don’t pay 100% of the money up front), and this drive would have failed if Paul, myself, and a few other Libertarians had not bailed it out. One individual that the non-Libertarian that Bill Redpath handed out the sweetheart, 100% of the pay up front deal tried to recruit to gather signatures could not even pronounce the name of the party. He kept calling it the “Liberation Party.” I corrected him more than one time, yet he still kept calling the party the “Liberation Party.” This individual falsely claimed that he had something like 2,000 signatures on the petition for the “Liberation Party,” but then when it came time to turn them in he claimed that somebody hijacked them from him at gun point at a gas station. The would be monopoly contractor claimed that he called the FBI to report the hijacked signatures, and he wanted to know if any of us had been in Minot (none of us ever made it there). Sadly, I’m not making any of this up.

    You see, it is one thing to talk about ballot access at a meeting, but it is another thing to be in the field in some state and witness people misrepresenting the Libertarian Party petition, as in saying things like, “Sign the petition to Keep Jobs in America,” or “Sign the petition to Increase the Minimum Wage,” as both have been used as pitches from non-libertarian mercenaries on Libertarian Party petition drives, within the last year or two as well. Or how about seeing the homeless people gathering signatures for the Libertarian Party in places like Philadelphia and Chicago, some of whom are alcoholics or crackheads? Hey, it’s nice to try to get homeless people jobs, but these are not the kind of people who are very likely to do a good job representing the Libertarian Party, or bring in a decent validity rate on their signatures.

  335. paulie Post author

    I believe that the increase in teh compensation budget over two years was over $100,000, wasn’t it? The LNC appears to have added Wes Benedict and kept Carla Howell, so there was an increase in staff size.

    I thought that was during 2013. Which would you fire? Both?

  336. Andy

    “George Phillies December 16, 2013 at 9:39 pm
    Are you saying there are ‘No Contract’ ballot access deals?”

    Yes, although in a few cases during the last election cycle, there were some “sweetheart” monopoly deals handed out (this was an unheard of practice in the LP prior to this) to a few individuals in a few states, such as Pennsylvania, as in only one person was hired for the top pay rate, and they got to hire a bunch of people and take an “override” off of them, and the only way to work on the drive was to work under this one individual (who pocketed around half of the money that was spent on the PA drive), and there was not even any oversight as to how the job was being done. So basically, a few people got to walk away with a lot of money, and for jobs that were poorly done (see Pennsylvania and Oklahoma for examples).

  337. paulie Post author

    No contract has been the standard for ballot access contracts. Monopoly is a separate issue. I have been told ballot access committee is now working on a standard contract.

  338. paulie Post author

    The institutional memory issue is something that needs to be promoted with all the state parties! And I purposely put that exclamation point in there.

    Agreed.

  339. Andy

    Oh, and apparently the person whom got handed the sweetheart deals in South Dakota (where they pocketed about half the money for doing little work), and who got paid 100% of the money up front for North Dakota (another unheard of practice), but due to not actually doing anything in North Dakota, did end up refunding most of the money, I say most of it, because they never refunded the final $1,200 (although I suspect that the amount may have actually been higher than that), which means that they stole it. Yes, that’s right, this person stole at least $1,200 from the Libertarian Party. If you are hired to do a job, and somebody sends you money to do it, but then you don’t do the job, and you do not refund the money for not doing the job, I call that theft.

    Now one would think that somebody who’d do something like that would be blacklisted from the Libertarian Party, or at least told that they were blacklisted until they returned the money, right? Well, this is not what happened. The individual in question was given another opportunity to work on a Libertarian Party petition drive again (well, actually, this was the only time they ever personally gathered signatures for the LP, as during the South Dakota drive all they did was hire other people and take an “override” off of them, as in they did all of the work, and this person pocketed half of the money), this time in Washington DC. A Libertarian who lives in the DC area told me that this person came into DC, spent a lot of time goofing off, got very few signatures, and apparently got caught by a party member misrepresenting the petition, as in lying about what the petition was for to get people to sign. I don’t know what line of bull they were spewing, but I’d sure like to find out.

  340. Andy

    “paulie Post authorDecember 16, 2013 at 10:08 pm
    No contract has been the standard for ballot access contracts. Monopoly is a separate issue. I have been told ballot access committee is now working on a standard contract.”

    I bet this will be done in a screwed up fashion as well.

    I have spoken at great length a certain LP State Chair on this topic, and we came to the conclusion that there’d have to be different types of contracts for different situations.

  341. paulie Post author

    Apparently Emmett supposedly misunderstood LP views on issues. Given that this was DC he most likely represented us as a “progressive” liberal party.

  342. Andy

    How about the false report to the LNC about “How the ballot access drive was successfully and professionally completed in South Dakota, so I prepaid (note from me: THIS IS AN UNHEARD OF PRACTICE) ______________ (insert name) for North Dakota.”?

    FACT: The South Dakota petition drive was NOT finished at the time this statement was made, in fact, there were still petition circulators working on it for over a month, maybe even two months after this. It was FALSELY claimed that the South Dakota petition drive had ended in early December, yet there were definitely petitioners still working on the petition drive well after this, and the signatures did not get submitted to the South Dakota Secretary of State’s office until sometime in February, and the petition did not get certified by the South Dakota Secretary of State’s office until a few weeks after it got turned in, so how could anyone have said that “____________ (insert name) successfully and professionally completed the South Dakota petition drive” in early December?

    As for crediting this individual for “professionally” completely the job (which had not even been completed at the time this was said), how do you define professionally? If you define it as one who gets paid to do something, then I suppose one could make such a statement, but if you attach more meaning to the word than just getting paid, I’d call this a false statement. The truth is that the individual in question was not even in the state, and never gathered any signatures. All they did is hire people who had worked on a ballot initiative during the previous election cycle and took and override off of them (so in other words, they pocketed half the money and did little or nothing). They called in false numbers several times (as in they lied about how many signatures they were holding) and took a lot longer to finish the job than it should have taken. Yes, it was eventually completed, but as I said above, South Dakota is one of the higher validity states, so it is a hard state to screw up. I can tell you that not one person who worked on this petition drive was a libertarian, so therefore you can bet that no Libertarian outreach took place during the drive. I know somebody who worked on Americans Elect and the Constitution Party petition drives in South Dakota, which started in January of 2012, and they described the local South Dakota crew who worked on the Libertarian Party petition in a not so rosy manner.

  343. Andy

    “paulie Post authorDecember 16, 2013 at 10:43 pm
    Apparently Emmett supposedly misunderstood LP views on issues. Given that this was DC he most likely represented us as a ‘progressive’ liberal party.”

    Misunderstood, or misrepresented? I suspect misrepresentation.

    One could say that the Libertarian Party agrees with some of the people who call themselves liberals or leftists on some issues, and one could say that the Libertarian Party is classically liberal, but the Libertarian Party is not what is understood today to be a progressive liberal party.

  344. Joe

    paulie @ December 16, 2013 at 10:07 pm wrote:

    “Vernon” about 450 comments ago:

    “nobody cares”

    You were saying? :-)”

    Yeah, but about half are yours! That said, I wonder if we can break 1,000 comments here.

  345. Andy

    “paulie Post authorDecember 16, 2013 at 10:43 pm
    Apparently Emmett supposedly misunderstood LP views on issues. Given that this was DC he most likely represented us as a ‘progressive’ liberal party.”

    I think that this is complete bull. Why? Because I had a conversation with the individual in question months before any of the incidents described above happened, and during that conversation I brought up that I was a Libertarian, and this individual said that they knew what a libertarian was, and they made a favorable comment about Ron Paul. So I don’t think that they thought that it was a progressive left wing party.

  346. Starchild

    Andy, these are disturbing allegations. (You wrote, in part):

    apparently the person whom got handed the sweetheart deals in South Dakota (where they pocketed about half the money for doing little work), and who got paid 100% of the money up front for North Dakota (another unheard of practice), but due to not actually doing anything in North Dakota, did end up refunding most of the money, I say most of it, because they never refunded the final $1,200 (although I suspect that the amount may have actually been higher than that), which means that they stole it. Yes, that’s right, this person stole at least $1,200 from the Libertarian Party. If you are hired to do a job, and somebody sends you money to do it, but then you don’t do the job, and you do not refund the money for not doing the job, I call that theft.

    What do you think should be done here? I’m assuming you’ve informed Bill Redpath about the situation? My impression is that you’re saying he knows (perhaps even is largely responsible for it) and is not going to do anything about it. Is this correct? Do you think a Libertarian National Committee motion is needed? If so, will you write me up some proposed language that addresses the issue?

    Of course I’d like to talk to the petitioner in question as well, and get his side of the story. Can you send me his full name and contact info, if you have it?

    Love & Liberty,
    ((( starchild )))
    At-Large Representative, Libertarian National Committee

  347. George Phillies

    Was there any concern that Wes Benedict’s recruitee for Treasurer did not notice that the FEC reports had those features relative to the expenditures? I’m referring to the issues is the confidential section of the report.

    Was there any particular debate on the Cloud motion, which was defeated, and how the members will take to it?

    This would have been a good meeting to have had someone videotape.

  348. paulie Post author

    What do you think should be done here?

    As discussed above, ballot access can not and should not be a one man operation. There needs to be more openness about how ballot access management decisions are made, although I agree with Bill that they often need to be made quickly and there is no time to have committees interfere, especially when composed of a bunch of people who don’t understand the practical realities of ballot access. But there are other times when there is more time for multiple people to consider the decisions and the problem of not having multiple people who are more experienced with ballot access management needs to be remedied. I thought that was the idea (or at least one of the purposes of) the ballot access committee, but as it turns out it is not. Perhaps we need a new ballot access action committee or ballot access management committee?

    I’m assuming you’ve informed Bill Redpath about the situation? My impression is that you’re saying he knows (perhaps even is largely responsible for it) and is not going to do anything about it. Is this correct?

    Yes to all those.

    Do you think a Libertarian National Committee motion is needed? If so, will you write me up some proposed language that addresses the issue?

    Nt sure how a motion is supposed to fix it. Maybe one to create what the ballot access committee should have been, either by expanding the scope of what it does or by creating a new committee?

    Additionally, perhaps we should have a motion that contractors who have not fulfilled their contract and/or refunded 100% of the money they were paid are ineligible to be hired again or be given good references?

    Perhaps some policies in place about who is given precedence in contracting and why, Andy has written a lot about that in the past so maybe he should reprise it.

    And an effort to find and train more LP activists who want to become professional petitioners.

    Of course I’d like to talk to the petitioner in question as well, and get his side of the story. Can you send me his full name and contact info, if you have it?

    Emmett Reistroffer
    emmett.reistroffer@gmail.com
    720-949-8397 or 406-944-4204; not sure how current those numbers are.

    Beware, he is a very slick talker.

  349. paulie Post author

    Was there any concern that Wes Benedict’s recruitee for Treasurer did not notice that the FEC reports had those features relative to the expenditures? I’m referring to the issues is the confidential section of the report.

    Was there any particular debate on the Cloud motion, which was defeated, and how the members will take to it?

    Not sure I am allowed to tell you. It may have been in executive session. You could write the LNC and see if anyone responds.

    This would have been a good meeting to have had someone videotape.

    I asked for help with that in various fora but it did not materialize.

  350. George Phillies

    As we are discussing who was paid what, here is a standard of comparison from the parties of the Plootocrats.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/12/19/romneys-highest-paid-campaign-staffers-made-more-than-obamas/

    These are the 2012 payments for campaigns that went through a half-billion dollars gie or take each,

    Romney campaign

    1. Rich Beeson, political director: $214,375
    2. Lanhee Chen, policy director, $183,125
    2. Kathryn Biber, general counsel: $183,125
    2. Zachary Moffatt, digital director: $183,125
    2. Gail Gitcho, communications director: $183,125
    2. Matt Rhoades, campaign manager: $183,125
    7. Gabriel Schoenfeld, senior adviser/speechwriter: $172,500
    8. Jason McBride, deputy political director/New Hampshire state director: $140,000
    9. Louis Tavares, staff secretary/senior adviser: $133,750
    10. Andrea Saul, press secretary: $132,083

    Obama campaign

    1. Jim Messina, campaign manager: $172,345
    2. Stephanie Cutter, deputy campaign manager: $139,840
    3. Jennifer O’Malley Dillon, deputy campaign manager: $138,099
    4. Julianna Smoot, deputy campaign manager: $135,655
    5. Michael Slaby, chief innovation & integration officer: $113,511
    6. Jeremy Bird, national field director: $112,925
    7. Katherine Archuleta, national political director: $111,193
    8. Allyson Laackman, chief of staff to First Lady Michelle Obama: $110,973
    9. Buffy Wicks, director of “Operation Vote”: $110,628
    10. Ann Marie Habershaw, chief operating officer: $109,558

    Readers should guess they were paid less in 2011.

  351. paulie Post author

    Interesting that the losing establishment party paid better than the winning one.

    At this rate the best money must be with some really obscure long shot campaign that never even made the ballot….oh wait, it was. Americans Elect…..

  352. paulie Post author

    There was an exec comm phone call tonight. I heard non exec comm members of LNC and staff talking.

    Caught the tail end of it. Would be curious to know what was said earlier.

    Ideas for distributing money for people who went to the cancelled/rescheduled LNC meeting were discussed, but no action taken.

    I think there was a second subject dealt with on the call, but if so, I tuned in too late to catch it (I was a guest on Mike Shipley’s blog talk radio show while the EC call was starting).

  353. paulie Post author

    Yeah, but about half are yours!

    Pretty typical of IPR 🙂

    That said, I wonder if we can break 1,000 comments here.

    I doubt it, but maybe we can at least break 500?

  354. Starchild

    Chuck Moulton writes (December 15, 2013 at 12:28 pm):

    “They [Gary Johnson organization] want to raise a bunch of money and use it to line the pockets of Ron Nielsen and others using outrageous fundraising and administrative cost fees. I’m sure they’re on the lookout for all sorts of causes they can slap Gary Johnson’s name on to get more money from libertarians. Ballot access is one such cause.

    If they really cared about ballot access they would pay off their old ballot access debts instead of sending more and more money to Ron Nielsen.”

    Chuck, do you or anyone have any hard-source details on how much Ron Nielson has been paid? Maybe this has been covered on IPR and I missed it. I believe somebody told me it was several hundred thousand dollars. Hope that’s not true. I’m looking at those numbers George Phillies posted a few posts before this for how much top Romney and Obama staffers were paid in 2012 — could it really be that the Libertarian Party’s 2012 nominee had a better-compensated staffer than anybody on either of the establishment party campaigns? That would be a disgraceful waste of our movement’s resources.

  355. Matt Cholko

    I don’t think its fair to compare the compensation of LP campaign staff with that of the major parties. In an R or D campaign, many of those people have a shot at a good job if their candidate wins. Or, even if he loses, they’re building a resume for future employment. LP campaign staff don’t have any shot at a good job in the administration, and few future employment opportunities, at least with campaigns. So, it MAY be necessary to pay more upfront for talent.

    I’m not trying to justify anybody’s pay. I’m just saying’….

  356. Starchild

    There was a LNC Executive Committee teleconference last night. All the ExCom members were present (chair Geoff Neale, vice chair Lee Wrights, secretary Dave Blau, treasurer Tim Hagen, and non-officer members Bill Redpath, Dan Wiener, and Jim Lark). Other non-ExCom LNC members on the call, besides myself, were Dianna Visek, Brett Pojunis, Norm Olsen, I think Mark Hinkle, and Paulie Frankel toward the end, according to a comment he posted. LP executive director Wes Benedict also took part.

    I don’t know if anyone else was on the line or not. I did post notice of the meeting to LNCDiscussPublic@yahoogroups.com and other lists, but Geoff sprung the notice on us only a few hours beforehand, so many people may not have seen it in time to call in even if they’d wanted to.

    The call lasted about an hour (longer than most ExCom meetings), with two topics on the agenda:

    (1) How much money the party will have to take in before bonuses for Wes and LP political director Carla Howell will kick in.

    (2) How to handle reimbursement of LNC members who incurred extra expenses as a result of the Dec. 7-8 LNC meeting in Dallas being cancelled due to weather (it ended up being postponed a week and held in the same location Dec. 14-15 instead).

    On the first topic… Geoff proposed $1,461,000 as the level at which bonuses will kick in. Our budget as passed on Dec. 15 projects revenue of $1,404,800. The general idea is to incentivize staff to raise more money, by setting a target figure somewhat above what we expect to take in, but not so far above that staff will feel they have no realistic hope of meeting it.

    The main problem with how this is being done is that the bonuses are tied to *all* the money the party takes in, regardless of whether staff had anything to do with this money being raised or not. And apparently there is no upper limit. If the LP were to suddenly explode in popularity due to external events outside our control, or receive a huge new influx of revenue like an estate bequest or something — which Wes specifically asked about during the call — we could find ourselves paying very large bonuses not tied to performance at all.

    Both Dianna and Norm made good points about the building fund not being included in the budget projection. Dianna proposed $1.6 million as a target. Eventually Dan Wiener proposed a middle ground $1.5 million, which passed without objection.

    I think the numbers mentioned for bonuses (if the target is reached) were $16,000 for Wes and $12,000 for Carla, but I may be wrong about this. Our staff salaries and contracts should all be public in my opinion, but right now they are being kept secret, so I can’t tell you their base pay.

    On the second topic… Geoff said $3300 has been donated by members (in response to a fundraising appeal put out for this purpose), and he plans to donate $250, toward the reimbursement fund. He said there were not enough funds to cover all the LNC members’ expense claims in their entirety. Geoff said he’d been told (I think by Scott Lieberman, but he might have mentioned Aaron Starr and Alicia Mattson) that the LNC Policy Manual prohibits compensating LNC members for attending LNC meetings, however in this case we would be compensating LNC members for *not* attending a meeting, thus making it okay(!) Some discussion of what formula ought to be used to determine individual compensation, various considerations — what if someone incurred a high expense by waiting until the last minute to buy a ticket, etc., should they be reimbursed this cost?

    Geoff proposed limiting reimbursement to travel and lodging only (which I certainly agree with, since the whole thing is a bad idea in my opinion — being on the LNC *is* expensive and that is a valid concern, but we would do better to address this by having more virtual and fewer in-person meetings, and/or by LP members independently undertaking to help like-minded LNC members who may have difficulty meeting the financial requirements). Scott Lieberman’s reimbursement request came up, because he’s reportedly requesting a much higher amount than anyone else on the LNC. Scott said he incurred around $1500 in expenses, of which he is requesting reimbursement for “only” $1100. Not sure whether “travel” would include Scott’s $60 cab ride from the hotel to Dallas Love Field airport (I pointed out on the LNC-discuss list that he could have taken a 24-hour shuttle service for half the cost, and also that he could have stayed somewhere less expensive than the Hyatt.)

    Lee Wrights pointed out that as a regional alternate whose region was already going to be represented at the meeting by its regional reps, Scott did not have to attend the meeting at all. Lee also said that we all know there are expenses that come with the job, and sometimes unexpected things occur (like Dallas being iced in) and this whole reimbursement thing is taking us in the wrong direction — couldn’t agree more!

    Unfortunately, neither Lee nor anyone else on the ExCom objected when Geoff proposed adding to the reimbursement fund with money from the chair’s discretionary fund, which I believe he said is $5000 per term and has not yet been used, even though Geoff specifically asked if any ExCom members objected.

    It occurred to me that when we were looking at the budget last weekend and trying to identify possible expenses to cut, I had not recalled seeing any $5000 chair’s discretionary fund item listed (if I had, I might well have proposed cutting it!). Our budgets often do not contain sufficient detail for the LNC to make good decisions on them, in my opinion. Anyway, I asked if the chair’s discretionary fund is in the budget.There seemed to be some confusion on that point. Wes Benedict said he thought it was part of the “administration” budget category. Geoff obliquely said that the Policy Manual authorizes exceeding the budget in certain circumstances.

    It’s bad enough that we wasted an official fundraising appeal on raising money to compensate us for travel expenses when there are so many things for which we could have sought funds that would better serve to advance the cause of liberty. But this plan to use the chair’s discretionary fund really stinks. Whether it’s taking money out of the budget or some off-budget item, either way we are going beyond funds raised specifically for this purpose and talking about drawing on the party’s general resources.

    Dan Wiener further proposed that if we have extra comped hotel rooms at the convention, some of these room nights could be given to LNC members in lieu of cash if we still couldn’t cover the expenses. These often go to speakers or convention organizers. Someone mentioned 15 as a ballpark estimate of comped hotel rooms. If that is correct, I did not know there were usually so many. I’d like to see a public accounting of who gets these rooms at each convention as part of a form posted online after each convention listing in an easy-to-read format a set of statistics for the event including things like how many attendees there were, how many delegates, who were the speakers and what if anything were they compensated, how much money the event made or lost, what the terms of the venue contract were, etc.

    At our meeting this past weekend, incidentally, the chair reportedly was comped a free upgrade to a suite at the hotel (when we were considering venues this was originally reported as a “free suite”, but more recently Geoff said it was only a free upgrade). I proposed that we auction off the free suite, or upgrade, to whoever bid the most money for it, as a way to raise a little extra money for the party, but this suggestion was ignored.

    Both Steve Linnabary (LNC regional alternate) and I have expressed that we want our shares of any reimbursement to go back to the party, or to those who donated the money. Steve said he wants his share to go toward ballot access. I said I want donors to have a choice with regard to my share ($372 for a wasted flight to Phoenix en route to Dallas where I heard of the cancellation before completing my trip) of whether to have that portion of their donation refunded to them, put toward some other specific LP purpose, put into the party’s general fund, or left for me to decide which party purpose to put it toward (I will probably make a targeted donation to campus outreach, which sadly as noted earlier in this thread is budgeted for $0).

    Rather than being appreciative of our willingness to put any reimbursement money which we might be deemed entitled toward the good of the party, Geoff Neale mentioned our requests almost in the tone of it being an annoyance. He said he was not inclined to have the party facilitate such actions; that once we had the money, we could dispose of it as we liked, and if I wanted to call up donors and offer them their money back, I could do that. I said that was all I was asking for.

    Dan Wiener objected even to this, saying we should not be bothering the donors with stuff like this, and that I should not be allowed to call them. I believe Bill Redpath chimed in his agreement with Dan. Very disappointing.

    Geoff said he wasn’t asking for any action on the reimbursement issue tonight, but was giving people until Christmas to submit their receipts for claimed expenses.

  357. Starchild

    Matt Cholko writes (December 20, 2013 at 8:24 am):

    I don’t think its fair to compare the compensation of LP campaign staff with that of the major parties. In an R or D campaign, many of those people have a shot at a good job if their candidate wins. Or, even if he loses, they’re building a resume for future employment. LP campaign staff don’t have any shot at a good job in the administration, and few future employment opportunities, at least with campaigns. So, it MAY be necessary to pay more upfront for talent. I’m not trying to justify anybody’s pay. I’m just saying’….”

    Matt, what you say about working for an establishment party campaign offering better future job prospects in undoubtedly true, however I think it is outweighed by the fact that the establishment parties have way more resources than we do.

    I believe we should be hiring people who are committed libertarians and are helping out because they value the cause of freedom, not people who are in it for the money or seeking to advance their careers. If we cannot find “talent” with this approach, then let’s start making our own talent by helping passionate young libertarians gain requisite campaign skills. I just can’t see any justification for paying people six figure salaries to work on Libertarian campaigns.

  358. George Phillies

    By comparison with past LP Presidential campaigns, the D and R compensations I listed here are large to enormous. By comparison with Johnson 2012? There is the complication that Johnson 2012 has yet to file FEC reports listing recipients by name. However, 50 hours a month at $325 an hour is a higher monthly rate than anyone in the Obama campaign.

  359. paulie Post author

    Chuck, do you or anyone have any hard-source details on how much Ron Nielson has been paid? Maybe this has been covered on IPR and I missed it. I believe somebody told me it was several hundred thousand dollars. Hope that’s not true. I’m looking at those numbers George Phillies posted a few posts before this for how much top Romney and Obama staffers were paid in 2012 — could it really be that the Libertarian Party’s 2012 nominee had a better-compensated staffer than anybody on either of the establishment party campaigns? That would be a disgraceful waste of our movement’s resources.

    Nielson claims that the large amounts he is shown as having been paid on FEC reports were not actually paid but were attempts to maximize their matching funds, and that these same amounts were then listed as debts in another attempt to milk matching funds after the fact, although he will not be very proactively pursuing this theoretical back pay. He also say this is all legal since he has not technically forgiven the debt (otherwise it would be an illegally large in-kind contribution of services). Phillies disputes every part of those claims based on a literal reading of FEC reports and perhaps different readings of how FEC rules may be interpreted.

    There’s also the possibility that Nielson did in fact recently get a large donation to cover the past debt to himself. Or, it may be that this donation is actually being used as a way to leverage more money for the new PAC. For that matter I haven’t confirmed that it actually took place. So things are very murky there.

  360. paulie Post author

    However, 50 hours a month at $325 an hour is a higher monthly rate than anyone in the Obama campaign.

    Nielson claims these payments were not ever made, and that they were reported to the FEC because how much they raise and spend has to do with how much they get in matching funds and that this is the same amount that they are also reporting as debts and that it is all legal. YMMV.

  361. George Phillies

    There are large amounts of Johnson 2012 2012 campaign debt that have not been paid. There are large amounts of Johnson 2012 2011 campaign debt that have been paid. I am reporting as paid the debts that *have been discharged*, not the debts that have not yet been paid, of which there are lots. Paulie, you appear to be reporting that the money in question was not used to pay off 2011 campaign debts, as the FEC filings indicate. In that case, where did the money go?

  362. paulie Post author

    Geoff proposed limiting reimbursement to travel and lodging only (which I certainly agree with, since the whole thing is a bad idea in my opinion — being on the LNC *is* expensive and that is a valid concern, but we would do better to address this by having more virtual and fewer in-person meetings, and/or by LP members independently undertaking to help like-minded LNC members who may have difficulty meeting the financial requirements).

    I agree regarding virtual meetings, but that is not up to the LNC. This needs to be pushed with bylaws. Current LNC members are not responsible for these outdated bylaws restricting us thus.

    As for independent contributions, I have been asking. For this last meeting I got two contributions – one for $200 (not sure if the donor wants to be named) and $20 from Joe Buchman, as a way of testing out how paypal contributions work. I also split the room with you one of my four nights there, so that was another $50 savings. I appreciate those contrbutions! However, the overall cost was still well over $1,000, and would have been more if there was an opportunity cost of time off from work. So far, the evidence seems to indicate either that my contributions in covering LNC meetings and whatever little I get done as an alternate are valued by others at a much lower level than what they actually cost me, or that people simply don’t want to contribute very much to LNC travel costs in general.

    Of course, since it seems (at least so far, and the term is almost over) that I go to every meeting anyway, so it is rational for people to conclude that I don’t really need their help with this, and that they can get whatever value they get out of it by paying zero. The only downside is that now that I know the extent of that for a fact, I have very little (really, no) interest in doing it again next term, along with other reasons why I do not want to run again. If it wasn’t for my determination to finish my commitment, I would likely have quit mid-term.

  363. paulie Post author

    Paulie, you appear to be reporting that the money in question was not used to pay off 2011 campaign debts, as the FEC filings indicate.

    I’m not reporting that. I actually don’t know. What I am reporting, to the best of my abilities, is what Nielson has told me by way of explanation. I am not saying he is or is not saying the truth.

    If I understood him correctly and if he is to be believed, their FEC reports are massively inaccurate but at the same time this is all somehow legal.

  364. paulie Post author

    Scott Lieberman’s reimbursement request came up, because he’s reportedly requesting a much higher amount than anyone else on the LNC. Scott said he incurred around $1500 in expenses, of which he is requesting reimbursement for “only” $1100. Not sure whether “travel” would include Scott’s $60 cab ride from the hotel to Dallas Love Field airport (I pointed out on the LNC-discuss list that he could have taken a 24-hour shuttle service for half the cost, and also that he could have stayed somewhere less expensive than the Hyatt.)

    Lee Wrights pointed out that as a regional alternate whose region was already going to be represented at the meeting by its regional reps, Scott did not have to attend the meeting at all. Lee also said that we all know there are expenses that come with the job, and sometimes unexpected things occur (like Dallas being iced in) and this whole reimbursement thing is taking us in the wrong direction — couldn’t agree more!

    Scott Lieberman’s responses to these points when they came up in email were that

    1) Cabs were hard to get, and would have cost as much as whatever room savings he could have gotten by staying at a cheaper hotel, and the shuttle was not running, so staying at a different hotel was not a practical option.

    2) Pojunis was not expected until noon on Saturday, and Audrey Capozzi was not expected at all on the original weekend, so he would have been at the table for the start of the meeting filling in for Pojunis, and felt it justified the extra costs of the last minute trip to make sure their region was not under-represented for any part of the meeting.

  365. paulie Post author

    Rather than being appreciative of our willingness to put any reimbursement money which we might be deemed entitled toward the good of the party, Geoff Neale mentioned our requests almost in the tone of it being an annoyance. He said he was not inclined to have the party facilitate such actions; that once we had the money, we could dispose of it as we liked, and if I wanted to call up donors and offer them their money back, I could do that. I said that was all I was asking for.

    Dan Wiener objected even to this, saying we should not be bothering the donors with stuff like this, and that I should not be allowed to call them. I believe Bill Redpath chimed in his agreement with Dan. Very disappointing.

    It would seem to indeed be looking a gift horse in the mouth to call donors and ask them questions like that. Some of them may appreciate that, others would likely ask for their money back and be less inclined to donate when the LP asks for extraordinary help in the future. I do, as stated previously, believe the appeal itself went out to too broad a group. Major donors and former LNC members, with more discretion, would IMO have been a more appropriate list to hit up for this.

    In general I would like to have an option B listed for all restricted funds, so if say Starchild didn’t want his portion of the money the donor would have already expressed a second preference (take money back, donate it to general fund, donate it to second choice project). As it stands, as a practical matter, Starchild and Steve can either accept the money and then donate it back to the party, or just not accept it to begin with and have a larger share go to other people. And of course they can also just accept the money and keep it, although it doesn’t sound like they want to.

  366. paulie Post author

    BTW Starchild – very impressive comprehensiveness in your notes on the exec comm meeting!

    I hope at some point you (and perhaps others who were there) can help fill in the gaps in my coverage of the Dallas meeting far above in this thread and correct anything I got wrong.

  367. Shane

    “LP campaign staff don’t have any shot at a good job in the administration, and few future employment opportunities, at least with campaigns.”

    Few campaign professionals maintain jobs on campaigns year round and off season. They go to work at like-minded organizations, consulting firms, agencies, etc. The same opportunity exists for anyone who has worked on an LP campaign. I’d argue that qualified libertarians have a better job market than most.

    As far as “growing your own,” well you have to possess mastery on the issue before you start training others to be great.

    To get exceptional support, you have to pay for it, otherwise you’re just spinning your wheels.

  368. paulie Post author

    As far as “growing your own,” well you have to possess mastery on the issue before you start training others to be great.

    Good point and high time to acquire such.

    BTW still interested in more detail about your proposed LNC/state chairs/exec comm structure; questions somewhere above.

  369. Starchild

    Paulie wrote (December 20, 2013 at 12:30 pm):

    Scott Lieberman’s responses to these points when they came up in email were that

    1) Cabs were hard to get, and would have cost as much as whatever room savings he could have gotten by staying at a cheaper hotel, and the shuttle was not running, so staying at a different hotel was not a practical option.

    2) Pojunis was not expected until noon on Saturday, and Audrey Capozzi was not expected at all on the original weekend, so he would have been at the table for the start of the meeting filling in for Pojunis, and felt it justified the extra costs of the last minute trip to make sure their region was not under-represented for any part of the meeting.

    Paulie, I’ll give you the second point, although Scott seems to attend every LNC meeting whether he expects to be able to vote as an alternate or not. The first one I’m not buying however. First, the hotel told me there was a shuttle running. Second, there’s no reason he needed to go to the Hyatt at all until the morning of the meeting, in which case the issue of the cost of getting from the Hyatt to a cheap motel (like the Super 8 I stayed at my first night in Dallas for $59) would have been moot. I believe he made his hotel reservations well in advance, and deliberately chose to forego less expensive lodging.

    Thank you for your kind words about my coverage of the ExCom meeting. It’s far from an unbiased report, but hopefully people will find the information helpful.

    As I’ve said, I appreciate you being on the committee and am sorry you are having difficulty with the expense and haven’t found more volunteers to help defray that. Having similar expenses myself I haven’t really felt in a position to donate, but will miss you being on the committee if you don’t run again. Hopefully Bitcoin will make you independently wealthy soon. 🙂 In truth though, since you rarely get to vote as an alternate, most of the value you provide in terms of weighing in with comments, keeping the LNC abreast of developments, etc., could be provided without you bearing the cost of attending meetings, provided you have access to the LNC. If you aren’t on the committee after next June, I hope you will continue to weigh in frequently and serve this valuable role.

  370. Joseph Buchman

    Starchild @ December 20, 2013 at 8:56 am wrote:

    “If that is correct, I did not know there were usually so many. I’d like to see a public accounting of who gets these rooms at each convention as part of a form posted online after each convention listing in an easy-to-read format a set of statistics for the event including things like how many attendees there were, how many delegates, who were the speakers and what if anything were they compensated, how much money the event made or lost, what the terms of the venue contract were, etc.”

    I concur. A lack of transparency on these issues is part of being “dishonest” (“dis-hon-est” — by which I mean being something other than “one-with-what-IS”).

    I believe Stewart Flood alluded to this (see Stewart Flood @ December 15, 2013 at 10:42 am on this thread) where he attempted to draw the distinction between “being paid” and “receiving compensation.”

    It almost (emphasis on ALMOST) seems to me that Mr. Starr was elected by the non-officer members of the LNC to the audit committee with the prior knowledge that any issues he found would be lost in a sea of proclaimed political motivations.

    Certainly this is a reason why he should NOT, IMO, have been elected a member of the Audit Committee.

    Imagine today that we had a universally-recognized-as-objective chair of the audit committee who had explicated the contract issues between Carla and Elmerling-Cloud, the FEC and other issues. Someone who could not have been accused of a political agenda. Would those financial concerns be seen differently today, I wonder?

    When such a polarizing individual is appointed, is there more freedom/less concern by those who will be reviewed by that individual?

    I want to be clear here that I offer the above questions not as criticism of Mr. Starr or his efforts. I’m no CPA. He is. And while my MBA in Finance from Purdue was awarded 30 years ago this month (December 1983), as far as I could tell during the time I was on the Audit Committee (through October 21), he was a damn good one.

    But even if he were to uncover Hoffa’s body in the Watergate basement, there would still be, I imagine, claims of some vast-LINO-wing conspiracy with political motives.

    That said, it is my gut feeling/best guess that Mr. Cloud was “paid” (in the form of non-monetary compensation like a free room and other perks) for being a speaker at our convention in Las Vegas in 2012. I don’t have the receipts to prove that, I doubt they exist or Mr. Starr would have found them, but it appears from comments by Mr. Flood here on IPR that this is the case.

    I’m also aware from first-hand experience that other folks received “free” upgrades.

    Also, Starchild based on your December 20, 2013 at 8:56 am post, you’d make one terrific secretary for the LNC.

  371. Stewart Flood

    First, Hoffa’s body is in the small closet next to the front door. And I was doing more than alluding to Mr Cloud being compensated. He was, as were other speakers.

    I have no problem with using some of the comp rooms from the hotel for speakers or giving them free gold packages. In some cases, it is appropriate to pay for transportation or other additional compensation. But I find serious problems with someone who is elected to the board ripping us off and then claiming he worked on the convention for free when he was clearly compensated.

    I (and most other board members) worked the convention as volunteers and still paid full price for our rooms, as well as for our packages.

    Mr Cloud should be ashamed of his actions. Unfortunately, he actually appears to be proud of himself. It disgusts me.

  372. Starchild

    Joe, thanks as always for your kind words, including what you wrote earlier about our meeting with James at the Phoenix airport. I think you made no less of a good impression for our ideas than I did. Which reminds me, I still need to write him back…

    I don’t know about being secretary though. That would mean I’d largely have to keep my mouth shut during meetings, lol!

    If there’s somebody in the LP besides Aaron Starr who would have been as diligent, competent, thorough, and perseverant in looking into and following up on these matters as he has been while serving as Audit Committee chair, I don’t know who it would be. He was not alone on the committee, and I believe you and Brett both supported his recommendations; I tend to think that anyone leading a similarly hard-hitting investigation would have come under fire.

    Of course, as with other jobs in the party, I do continue to favor a more open and better-publicized search for volunteers.

  373. Starchild

    Thanks also by the way to Jill Pyeatt, Joe Wendt, Michael Wilson, Mark Axinn, George Phillies, and others I’m probably forgetting at the moment who’ve directed supportive comments my way in this or other recent threads that I haven’t specifically responded to. I don’t always get around to commenting on everything, but in many cases do read and appreciate your sentiments even when I don’t get around to formally saying so.

  374. Starchild

    Stewart Flood writes (December 20, 2013 at 6:34 pm):

    I was doing more than alluding to Mr Cloud being compensated. He was, as were other speakers… I find serious problems with someone who is elected to the board ripping us off and then claiming he worked on the convention for free when he was clearly compensated. I (and most other board members) worked the convention as volunteers and still paid full price for our rooms, as well as for our packages.

    Stewart, I share your concern. As I noted in the comment to which Joe responded, I wish we would keep formal track of things like how many hotel rooms we get comped, and who gets the use of them. I think greater transparency would do a lot to prevent things from being done in an unfair or unethical manner. In the meantime, can you point myself or others on the LNC to any evidence to substantiate your claim about Michael Cloud having been compensated for work on the (2012, I presume) convention?

  375. Joe

    Starchild @ December 20, 2013 at 8:26 pm wrote:

    “If there’s somebody in the LP besides Aaron Starr who would have been as diligent, competent, thorough, and perseverant in looking into and following up on these matters as he has been while serving as Audit Committee chair, I don’t know who it would be.”

    Ditto.

    What I think is needed is an outside bookkeeper and the appointment of neutral CPAs to the Audit Committee and/or some alternative more detailed outside review. It might cost something, but whatever that is, would be far less than the cost of the damage of this current mess and claims of bias.

    Otherwise, whoever is on that committee is compromised, either in wanting to avoid the appearance of political bias/agenda to please all sides, or if anything significant is found or revealed, being accused of an ulterior motive.

    It’s doubtful anything controversial turned up by an LP member in that role (as opposed to an outside/non member resource), would be universally seen as fair or accurate.

  376. Andy

    Starchild said: “I believe we should be hiring people who are committed libertarians and are helping out because they value the cause of freedom, not people who are in it for the money or seeking to advance their careers. If we cannot find ‘talent’ with this approach, then let’s start making our own talent by helping passionate young libertarians gain requisite campaign skills.”

    Starchild, this is exactly the point that I made during the public comments portion of the LNC meeting that was held in Las Vegas, NV last July, when I said that there ought to be a priority placed upon hiring actual Libertarians to works on Libertarian Party ballot access drives. There has been little to no effort put into getting Libertarians to gather petition signatures, either as paid signature gatherers or as volunteers.

    If anything, it seems to me that there has been a push to hire non-libertarians to work on LP ballot access drives (see Pennsylvania, Oklahoma, and South Dakota from the last election cycle for a few examples).

    What steps have been taken to ensure that most of the LP ballot access work is done by actual Libertarians, whether they are paid or volunteers? There have not been any steps taken from what I can see.

    “I just can’t see any justification for paying people six figure salaries to work on Libertarian campaigns.”

    People should be paid based upon going market rates and the results that they produce. I would not have a problem with a person being paid six figures if they produced results which merited them being paid six figures.

  377. Stewart Flood

    I don’t understand what you mean by “evidence.” It happened, it is a fact, and it is in the convention records. But it was not illegal, and it is not grounds for removal. The objection is related to ethics, which is of no apparent concern to the board.

    The LNC showed this past weekend that it does not have the ability to deal with its own internal corruption. Why persue it further? Nothing is going to happen at this point.

  378. Wes Wagner

    Stewart is correct… the LNC won’t act with ethics and has been unable to for many terms.

    We should ask ourselves some hard questions:

    Is it ethical to allow the LNC to continue to solicit funds in the name of the Libertarian Party, or should we, as the states that compose the LP in which all real authority and assets are vested, take action to cease this entire affair?

    Should we fully inform the donors and membership of the LNC Inc about the nature of the issues and the waste and inefficiency of the central office?

    Do we just walk into Ohio with a fools hope that we can elect an ethical board when we know how the political chips are stacked?

    etc.

  379. paulie Post author

    http://www.independentpoliticalreport.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/lnc-minutes-2013-12-14-1.pdf

    To the Libertarian National Committee,

    Attached (paulie: copied above) is the first draft of the minutes of the December 14 and 15, 2013, LNC meeting in Dallas.

    The Policy Manual says, “Attendees may submit corrections, clarifications, and changes to the draft minutes for the Secretary’s consideration for a period of 15 days following the distribution of the draft minutes.”

    Please submit your corrections, clarifications, and changes to me as soon as possible and no later within 15 days from now.

    Today is Friday, December 20.
    I am setting the 15 day deadline for submissions to be Saturday, January 4, at 11:59:59 p.m. Pacific Standard Time.

    The Policy Manual says, “The Secretary shall distribute an updated version of the draft minutes not later than 7 days following the end of that submission period. The updated version shall be deemed official if no LNC Member challenges the content to the Secretary within 7 days of the distribution of the updated version.”

    Gary Johnson
    512-441-6378
    sedition@aol.com

    P: The draft minutes are correct as far as I can tell, except one very minor detail – Alabama ballot access should say county by county, no district by district. Although a county is a kind of district, so maybe that is fine too. They are also much more comrehensive than my contemporaneous bloggig above, so I encourage everyone to read them.

    If there is any demand I can also copy and paste the text here, but it’s 18 pages and I would probaby lose the formatting and paragraph breaks in going from pdf to text. However, if anyone does want to read it and can’t open the pdf please let me know and I’ll paste it. However, I won’t take the time to manually redo the spacing and paragraph breaks.

  380. Stewart Flood

    I will agree with Mr Wagner regarding this specific incident, however his blanket statement of “the LNC won’t act with ethics and has been unable to for many terms.” is inaccurate and misleading.

    Based on the evidence, many board members, including myself, made the ethical (and I still believe correct) decision to not agree with Mr Wagner’s explanation of what took place in Oregon.

    There are several members of the LNC who’s personal ethics and capacity to represent the membership is above reproach, regardless of what the issue is. At least one of them who’s opinion and advice I always found to be valuable failed to be re-elected because of the perception that he had acted in a partisan manner when he had not.

    The decision last weekend to not act appears to be based on internal political alignments. Voting against the position of the opposition simply because the opposition proposes it, even though it is clearly the correct action, is unethical and a clear failure to represent the interests of the members of the party. Both sides do it.

    I most likely agree with Mr Starr on the issue of Mr Cloud’s invoices (making the assumption that he lobbied for action to be taken, up to and including removal from office), however his own action in digging until he could find something to hide the previous scandal — sometimes called a witch hunt — also disturbs me.

    The LNC is even more “partisan” now than it was when I served.

  381. Wes Wagner

    I have never told the full story about what happened in Oregon. We also do not have to answer to the LNC and the Starr chamber led persecution of us. So in short go fuck yourself Stewart on that particular issue.

    If the LNC wanted to disaffiliate us they could take the vote and have a real trial and hearing with the judicial committee .. not the chicken shit kangaroo things they were trying to do. The LNC answers to us … not the other way around.

    It was a manufactured crisis that blew up into Starr’s Burke’s and the LNC’s faces … and the full extent of damage will not be realized until after the lawsuit the LNC backed is resolved so we can get to the root of the matter and establish culpability through a 3rd party transparent process.

  382. paulie Post author

    There are several members of the LNC who’s personal ethics and capacity to represent the membership is above reproach, regardless of what the issue is. At least one of them who’s opinion and advice I always found to be valuable failed to be re-elected because of the perception that he had acted in a partisan manner when he had not.

    It may be useful if you say who that was so others can evaluate whether they agree with you.

  383. paulie Post author

    The decision last weekend to not act appears to be based on internal political alignments. Voting against the position of the opposition simply because the opposition proposes it, even though it is clearly the correct action, is unethical and a clear failure to represent the interests of the members of the party. Both sides do it.

    I most likely agree with Mr Starr on the issue of Mr Cloud’s invoices (making the assumption that he lobbied for action to be taken, up to and including removal from office), however his own action in digging until he could find something to hide the previous scandal — sometimes called a witch hunt — also disturbs me.

    The LNC is even more “partisan” now than it was when I served.

    Are there only two sides? If so, what are they?

    Many people may assume that they are radical/left-friendly libertarians vs. manstreamer/conservative-leaning ones, but is that true? In this particular case, on the merits, some radicals such as Starchild were on one side while others such Vohra were on the other. Yet Starchild, Vohra and myself are the three people speaking up on the LNC list to retroactively make more of the debate public. Speaking up against us? Wiener and Redpath, regardless of what faction you think they line up with and whether Cloud is associated with that faction or not.

    For that matter, Hinkle and Cloud are radicals in the sense that they oppose any moves to water down or move to the right the party’s ideology and communications. Cloud even told me he was motivated to come back to LP leadership after many years away from it because he was unhappy with the conservative/mainstreamer direction that Root, Starr and their allies were taking the party in. Hinkle had many battles last term with the Root/Starr faction, for example on the Republican Wall of Shame and the office fund. Yet, aside from Arvin and Mark Hinkle, many others voted against demanding reimbursement from Cloud, for example Redpath and Wiener, that frequetly voted with Starr, Root et al in past LNC terms.

    One may claim that the people voting for reimbursement are the remaining Starr faction, but Starchild voted with them, and he is most definitely not Starr faction. On some of the budget cut issues also he voted with them.

    And on the convention delegate fee Starchild voted against them. Yet Hinkle and Cloud were two of the five votes for convention fees, along with some “Starr faction” folks, while they were strongly opposed to each other on the reimbursement question.

    Or take the office fund. On one side we find some Starr allies AND Starchild, and also many of the radicals and those who side with them frequently on internal party issues who are not on the LNC but comment here often, e.g. Phillies, Wagner, Knapp, etc. On the other you’ll find radicals like myself (feel free to argue that I’m not), the Hinkle/Cloud axis (whether you consider them radicals is up to you), Gary Johnson of TX (I would say he is a radical), Blau, Redpath, Lark and others.

    I’d be curious to see a diagram, like we had in the last term or perhaps the one before that, on which members voted with which other members what percent of the time. My gut sense is that this term is less broken down into clear factions, but I’d like to see the actual breakdown.

  384. Pingback: George Phillies: Questions for the Libertarian Party National Party Members to Consider | Independent Political Report

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  386. paulie Post author

    The question of how many sides there are, and who is on which side, is interesting to me. Can anyone shed light on this?

  387. paulie Post author

    Perhaps this exchange would help?


    Geoffrey Neale

    11:50 PM (11 hours ago)

    to Dianna, lnc-discuss

    Ms. Visek:

    I don’t care one whit what you think my job is, no matter how wrong you are.

    First off, if the repayment of my words of appreciation is the tone and content of your reply, I will note that and make no such efforts in the future.

    Next, I do not cut checks – staff does. I am a signatory on our bank accounts, because I am an account authority, but I don’t even know where the checks are stored.

    Next, the LNC delegated the responsibility of deciding how available funds were to be distributed, and I am assisting in the collection of the supporting detail to do exactly that.

    You are right – I am not an auditor. This is not detective work. However, the appropriate oversight that should be exercised in the submission and reimbursement of expenses includes not just receipts, but occasionally supporting documentation in the form of narrative. Without additional information, how would an auditor determine if a plane ticket that was reimbursed represented a transaction that should have been reimbursed? This is not detective work – it’s how we ought to record our transactions, so that the auditor, when reviewing the transactions AFTER they occur, can find adequate evidence that the transaction was appropriate. The role I am following here is called oversight, and related parties are held to a higher scrutiny, at least by our current Audit Committee. I have learned from our systemic inadequacies, and intend to do things well. Sorry if it bugs you.

    By the way, oversight is part of my job. I have learned from my prior failures in that regard, and am attempting to do better.

    However, in light of your snotty remark, I’m really wondering why I want to kick in $250 if some if it goes to you. I’m also wondering whether or not the $1,000 from the Chair’s discretionary fund should be used either. After all, even though no one on the EC objected to me using the discretionary fund, it is still my discretionary fund, and any other LNC money would have to be voted on by the LNC.

    A Merry Christmas to you too, Ms. Visek.

    Geoffrey Neale

    From: Dianna Visek [mailto:dianna.visek@gmail.com]
    Sent: Sunday, December 22, 2013 9:44 PM
    To: Geoffrey Neale
    Cc: timhagan-tyr@yahoo.com
    Subject: Re: my travel reimbursement request

    As I see it, your job is to cut the checks, not play detective (or auditor).

    Dianna

    On Sun, Dec 22, 2013 at 3:43 PM, Geoffrey Neale wrote:

    Thank you.

    The narrative really helps explain the receipts. If only ev3eryone else was so inclined.

    Geoff

    From: Dianna Visek [mailto:dianna.visek@gmail.com]
    Sent: Sunday, December 22, 2013 1:50 PM
    To: Geoffrey Neale; timhagan-tyr@yahoo.com
    Cc: Dianna Visek
    Subject: my travel reimbursement request

    Hi Geoff and Tim,

    Attached please find my travel reimbursement request and receipts.

    Thanks for dealing with this and Merry Christmas!

    Dianna

  388. George Phillies

    @12/21 5:33 pm The actual debates here are almost never about purist/pragmatist questions. I say almost never as witness arguments about the War on Afghanistan and the War on Iraq. There are various people who want power.

  389. paulie Post author

    OK then, so given Stewart’s statement that “both sides do it…….The LNC is even more “partisan” now than it was when I served.” What are the two sides and who is on each, in light of the evidence of votes cast that I presented @12/21 5:33 pm?

  390. Starchild

    Good insights from Paulie (December 21, 2013 at 5:33 pm) about the LNC not being divided into two neat factions. What George Phillies says (December 23, 2013 at 2:12 pm) about the debates rarely being about purist/pragmatist questions also mirrors my observations.

    Let me clarify though that when Paulie writes in that same comment…

    One may claim that the people voting for reimbursement are the remaining Starr faction, but Starchild voted with them, and he is most definitely not Starr faction.

    …I’m pretty sure he is talking about voting for requiring Michael Cloud to repay money to the party, not the same “reimbursement” that Chuck Moulton is talking about above when he asks,

    I see Aaron Starr is getting reimbursed for his expenses. Was this fund intended to go to non-LNC members?

    Some correspondence between Paulie and Geoff Neale addresses Chuck’s question:

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    On Dec 25, 2013, at 8:58 AM, Geoffrey Neale wrote:

    Dear Paulie:

    That’s a good question.

    At this point I am running on the assumption that eligibility is based upon LNC membership and my proposed agenda. Mr. Starr was on the agenda, and his presence was necessary to the LNC.

    The EC will make the determination as a whole, but no one (until you) has brought up expanding the eligible universe. For the record, Ms. Mattson was there both weekends, and made no request for compensation when I requested an estimate of expenses. While her presence was valuable, I do not know if it rose to the level of “necessary”.

    Geoff

    From: travellingcircus@gmail.com [mailto:travellingcircus@gmail.com]
    Sent: Wednesday, December 25, 2013 9:39 AM
    To: Geoffrey Neale
    Cc: Aaron Starr; Tim Hagan; Ruth Bennett; michael cloud; Mark Hinkle; william.redpath@lp.org; Starchild; Arvin Vohra; Norm Olsen; Tony Ryan; Vicki Kirkland; Doug.Craig@lp.org; Sam Goldstein; Daniel Wiener; Scott Lieberman; Brett Pojunis; Audrey Capozzi; Rich Tomasso; Jim Lark; Scott Spencer; Dianna Visek; Michael Knebel; gary.johnson@lp.org; Paulie Frankel
    Subject: Re: Weather expenses

    Sorry for the idle curiosity, but as usual I can’t help but wonder.

    Who all besides LNC members is eligible for the fund?

    I am presuming Aaron is included because he needed to be there on behalf of the Audit Committee, which makes sense.

    What about Alicia? I could be wrong but I think she may have been there the original weekend. If so, was she eligible for the fund? I think her parliamentary advice was important at several points in the meeting.

    I know that Joe Buchman got part of the way to Dallas the original weekend and ended up having to pay for it, but never made it to the rescheduled weekend. I guess you can argue either way, since he had resigned from the Audit committee beforehand, but had been on it during much of the time its report was being worked on.

    Or, is the fund available to everyone that tried to get to the meeting, regardless of whether they are on LNC, audit or just gallery? If so, I know that Roger Roots drove for hours in hazardous conditions and didn’t find out that the meeting was rescheduled til he got there. I don’t know whether anyone else did that to try to be in the gallery.

    I don’t know why I am the one asking this, since none of it affects me directly. I guess maybe because no one else is.

    paulie

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    I have mixed feelings about expanding the reimbursement pool to non-LNC members, because I do not think there should have been any official party effort to reimburse LNC members in the first place. The fundraising appeal for that was sent out however, and cannot be unsent. But now Geoff Neale is proposing to supplement this money from donors with $1000 in additional money from the chair’s discretionary fund — i.e. taken out of the party’s general fund.

  391. paulie Post author

    …I’m pretty sure he is talking about voting for requiring Michael Cloud to repay money to the party, not the same “reimbursement” that Chuck Moulton is talking about above

    Correct.

  392. paulie Post author

    I see Aaron Starr is getting reimbursed for his expenses. Was this fund intended to go to non-LNC members?

    Chuck, good question. Geoff’s answer was that Aaron was on the agenda with the audit report.

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