Libertarian Party Platform Committee Announces Members/Solicits Input

The following have been elected by either the LNC or the top 10 State Affiliates as members of the 2014 Libertarian Party Platform Committee (the LNC, or the relevant state chair, as well as each member has now confirmed their election to the committee):

01) Sarah Bales (CA)
02) Joe Buchman (Interim Chair)
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)
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)

Additionally the following alternates to the committee have been confirmed:

Henry Haller (Alternate, PA)
Ann Leech (Alternate, OH)
Ken Prazak (Alternate, IL)
John Wayne Smith (Alternate, At Large)
Starchild (Alternate, At Large)
Aaron Starr (Alternate, CA)

2014libertarianplatform@gmail.com has been created as an email address for public submission of ideas to the Platform Committee.

Direct contact information for some of the committee members (those who desire to share it publicly) may be found at:

http://www.lp.org/bylaws-mandated-committees

(Note: Updated information was submitted for the LP.ORG page over a week ago; The site is expected to be updated soon.)

Identical information (as well as a transparent history of the verification of the various members and other comments) is also available on the 2014 Libertarian Party Platform Committee’s Facebook page at:

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Libertarian-Platform-Committee/496553003725528

Interim chair Buchman has announced his intention to poll the committee within the next few weeks to “brainstorm” the best time/place for the committee’s first meeting.

The Convention Committee has confirmed that a room at the hotel in Columbus is available for platform discussion beginning two days prior to the start of the convention.

Interim Chair Buchman has also announced that he will not make any decision regarding the time/place of the first in-person meeting until after the LNC announces the time/place of its post-Dallas meeting, that he will give at least 6 weeks notice prior to the in-person meeting, and that he will make that decision before the end of January 2014. (Under Robert’s Rules of Order the interim chair has the authority/responsibility to determine the time/place for the first in-person meeting.)

In the past the committee has met as late as just prior to the Convention, as early as concurrent with the spring LNC meeting (the 2014 spring meeting date/place has not yet been announced by the LNC), or even earlier for a Platform-Committee only work session at a neutral site.

The permanent chair of the Platform Committee will be elected at the first in-person meeting of the committee (assuming a quorum is present).

98 thoughts on “Libertarian Party Platform Committee Announces Members/Solicits Input

  1. Dave Terry

    My question is this; WHY is it necessary to have a platform committee at every LP convention?
    Unless there is some over-riding issue that needs resolution, I see no reason to convene a committee to “revise” the platform.

    It seems, to me, that this simply invites mischief and trolls with hidden agendas to tamper with our most fundamental documents.

    Anyone recall the wholesale mayhem resulting from the platform committee in Portland?

  2. Joseph Buchman Post author

    Dave Terry @ December 8, 2013 at 12:15 pm

    I don’t see the need for a significant re-write here this year. There are a few things to consider adding, for example the Party’s response to new revelations about NSA spying, or torture, or the growing acceptance of marijuana, or developments that could occur in the GWOT.

    IMO it makes sense to have the ability to respond to such new developments every 24 months or so.

    That said, I agree with your concern about the possibility of it being gutted and changed drastically. I’m not sure the degree of risk for that this coming Spring, but my impression is that it’s relatively low.

  3. Mark Axinn

    Especially as Columbus is centrally located (population and state-wise) and so the Convention likely will be well-attended, even for a non-Presidential year, neither of which was the case with Oregon.

  4. Wes Wagner

    I have it on fairly good authority that Oregon was chosen specifically to attempt to limit participation. There was a conspiracy. It involved a number of Flood’s alleged hooded keyholders and a particular local agent that they regularly worked with who always wanted to ascend to hooded keyholder status, but ultimately got asked to leave the LNC after canoodling with a female staffer and asking her for national’s data assets (and even worse, getting caught, with the chat archives having implicated Starr of similar activities).

  5. Shane

    Wes, I’m assuming that Stewart is referring to two folks in particular. But I disagree with labeling the pre-meetings of some LNC members as nefarious. It’s just standard practice. Different factions and cliques get together for dinner, meetings etc., and go over what they want to accomplish. Sometimes it is much more organized and if you don’t play ball with them they go after you unless they cannot win. That’s politics — but totally unnecessary at this level.

    On Portland, the same organizing went on pre-convention with the intent to use little-known procedure to wipe the platform. It worked and would have regardless of location.

  6. Stewart Flood

    Shane,

    At a point in time after you left, the meetings became “secret”. Those who were invited were required to not tell other members of the board. Non-members of the LNC led the meetings, directing those present in how they were to vote and who was to make specific motions. I have email messages designating that the meetings were not to be discussed.

    At one of the last meetings that I attended, I was told by one of the non-members (and I will state here that it was not Mr Starr) to shut up and that my opinions were not important. I was told to vote the way I was told to vote. I did not comply, since the motion was clearly not in the best interest of the party.

    A dinner where issues are discussed is fine, but it should not be secret and by “invitation only”. A quorum of the board was present at several of these meetings, making the secrecy and the decision process highly improper, especially when a non-member is acting as “chair”.

    Yes, it is politics as usual. As someone pointed out to me, I voted with Mr Starr only 20% of the time. Everyone agrees on at least 20% of the issues.

  7. Stewart Flood

    I will add that all of my comments relate to events from 2007 on. I have no knowledge of anything done in the “back rooms” at or prior to the Portland convention, or why the location was chosen. As Shane pointed out, the planning regarding the platform was in advance and was not secret.

    I also agree that the location of the convention was not a factor. Portland hosting a non-presidential convention was a more likely factor in the outcome.

  8. Shane

    Thanks, Stewart. Actually the Portland plan was done in secret.

    I few months ago I sued a local government for failing to comply with open-meeting laws. The law stated that if a quorum were present, the meeting would be open and minutes taken. Legislators hate the law but it’s effective.

    If you think this is a problem, maybe you should look into a similar policy for the LNC.

  9. Wes Wagner

    Shane

    What happened in Portland, Oregon and the plots involved go so far that if you do not purge people from the party who act like that, you will eventually have no party.

    I know of what I speak and probably know more than you about what happened and was discussed in those meetings. There are traitors who regret what they were involved in.

  10. Robert Capozzi

    As for input, I’d suggest deleting anything that is not true in the platform and SoP.

    There is no cult of the omnipotent state (at least in the US…the Ba’ath Party may be one, according to TK).

  11. Shane

    Traitors because they disagreed on platform planks and outmaneuvered the opposing party using Robert’s Rules?

    No one likes losing on parliamentary procedure but that doesn’t mean th victors are traitors. They are just comfortable gaming the system.

  12. Wes Wagner

    Shane

    No… traitors to the original cabal they were involved in.

    Also, there is a level of gaming the system that is so destructive that you will destroy the entire infrastructure, goodwill and capabilities of the system you hope to take over. When people go past that point, they are too dangerous to be kept around.

  13. Stewart Flood

    If it was a secret, it was a poorly guarded one. Portland was my first national convention, but I knew about the platform “plan” from a publicly accessible website where it was discussed by what appeared to me to be possibly as many as a hundred or more people.

    Traitors? If wanting to be in charge, then controlling board members and eliminating your opposition makes one a traitor, then there are quite a few state chairs who fit that description.

    I have never said that the goals of the “cabal” were to destroy the party or turn it into one that discarded libertarian goals. That is why they are able to obtain power and control certain levels of the organization.

    There are other board members who have libertarian goals, but will accept a certain level of underhanded tactics as part of a strategy to accomplish their long term goals. These members accept being manipulated by the power brokers. Exitus acta probat.

    I would call Mr Starr and his allies’ strategy destructive and damaging to the cause, but from what I know of their beliefs I would not call them traitors. There are quite a few libertarians who’s espoused goals are entirely within the sphere of libertarian beliefs, but who’s methods damage the cause. I would include in this group a number of opponents of Mr Starr. They are not traitors.

    The libertarian cause is more than just a political party. If it were only just a party, it would never have survived even this long.

  14. Stewart Flood

    I should have said “They are not necessarily traitors”, since it is certainly a possibility that there are members in positions of power who do secretly desire to destroy the party.

    It is also common for someone who desires to control for personal glory or financial gain to be mistakenly viewed by others as someone attempting to destroy what is being controlled. In a perfect world, libertarians who are active in the party would all work together completely altruistically. The pledge requires it.

    Unfortunately, we will never have a perfect world.

  15. Wes Wagner

    OK .. people keep misinterpreting the use of the word traitor. It was used in reference to people who were originally allies of the plot … then turned against their former allies and spilled all the beans and began to work against them.

  16. Starchild

    Joe Buchman writes (December 8, 2013 at 12:15 pm):

    I agree with your concern about the possibility of it being gutted and changed drastically. I’m not sure the degree of risk for that this coming Spring, but my impression is that it’s relatively low.

    That’s my impression as well. There’s not much left to gut. Those who liked what happened at Portland in 2006 would no doubt like to gut the Preamble and Statement of Principles, but fortunately there is a very high threshold to change them. The rest is pretty bare bones right now.

    The challenge at this point is less about protecting what we’ve got, and more about recovering the kind of strong, detailed platform we used to have until 7 years ago. But the real push for this may have to come bottom-up from the delegates — the insider-appointed Platform Committees have not had a strong track record of seeking to make our platform more libertarian.

  17. paulie

    There’s not much left to gut.

    Can’t agree there. There’s plenty of room, and potential push, to make the platform less libertarian.

  18. Starchild

    Robert Capozzi writes (@ December 8, 2013 at 12:15 pm):

    As for input, I’d suggest deleting anything that is not true in the platform and SoP.There is no cult of the omnipotent state (at least in the US…the Ba’ath Party may be one, according to TK).

    “Cult of the omnipotent state” is not untrue. It is a poetic turn of phrase, like “pursuit of happiness” or “huddled masses”.

    I believe the phrase is an allusion to the general mindset of people who believe that government should attempt to solve virtually any problem or perceived problem that arises in society. Sadly, this mindset is still alive and well in the United States, although I think its hold is weakening.

    If you think it refers to some actual organized group of people with sinister, cult-like characteristics such as the followers of Jim Jones or the KKK or something, and therefore must be false, I think you are taking it far too literally.

  19. paulie

    So…we’ve done this here before, and I guess we could use the years old thread or start a new one, but does anyone have proposed platform planks or plank changes they would like to discuss here publicly?

  20. Starchild

    Paulie – Well, yes, if we had a party full of people with generally less libertarian beliefs than we do at present, I agree that significant further watering down of the Platform would be a danger, and that is always a long-term threat to be vigilant against.

    What I meant was that given the views of the present membership I doubt there’s much left that large numbers of people want to gut. My impression is that the so-called “reformers” got most of what they wanted in 2006.

  21. paulie

    It’s all a matter of who shows up at the next convention, and the one after that, and….

    The possibility of a “tea party takeover” isn’t gone with its most famous figurehead, and for all we know he could be back, or others (Glenn Beck? Sarah Palin? Less known teatards?)

    I don’t think a huge rewrite will happen in 2014, but I don’t think it’s impossible. I didn’t expect the Portland massacre to happen, either.

  22. Stewart Flood

    Wes,

    If you are implying that I was a supporter of their “plot” then you are wrong. I was present at some (but not all) of these dinners, but I argued against making them a secret meeting and against having someone run them that was not on the LNC.

    They might think of me as a traitor, but if they had been paying attention to what I was saying to them they would have probably stopped inviting me to their meetings long before I left the LNC.

  23. Wes Wagner

    Stewart

    No .. there were people who helped with the Portland plot who have turned against them and spilled everything.

  24. paulie

    If you think it refers to some actual organized group of people with sinister, cult-like characteristics such as the followers of Jim Jones or the KKK or something, and therefore must be false, I think you are taking it far too literally.

    http://rt.com/usa/nro-satellite-octopus-emblem-854/

    ‘Nothing is beyond our reach’: Evil octopus strangling the world becomes latest US intelligence seal….

  25. paulie

    there were people who helped with the Portland plot who have turned against them and spilled everything.

    Is this public?

  26. Starchild

    Paulie wrote (December 9, 2013 at 9:25 am):

    http://rt.com/usa/nro-satellite-octopus-emblem-854/

    ‘Nothing is beyond our reach’: Evil octopus strangling the world becomes latest US intelligence seal….

    Worst. Marketing. Ever. LOL!!!

    This is like a story out of the Onion, but it’s all over the web and appears to be genuine.

    It’s definitely the kind of thing that lends more credence to the theory that there is a real, honest-to-god, proper noun, Cult of the Omnipotent State. Robert Capozzi must be groaning that it’s setting his quest to further neuter our Platform back by years!

  27. Robert Capozzi

    Starchild, thanks for your candor. The CotOS language is false in a literal sense. In a “poetic” sense, I’d say it’s poor poetry, employing a scare word (“cult”) and an obscure word that perhaps 80% of the pop. doesn’t know the meaning of (“omnipotent”).

    Why stick by such poor poetry? Your description is true, so why not use something like what you say, vs. self-marginalizing “poetry”?

    Be radical!

  28. paulie

    Collective guilt, one of the hallmarks of totalitarianism… http://libertycrier.com/brothers-keeper/

    http://www.alternet.org/education/zero-tolerance-policies-schools-are-often-destructive-fueling-school-prison-pipeline

    http://libertycrier.com/men-thought-impersonating-cops-robbing-people-turned-just-cops-robbing-people/

    http://libertycrier.com/govt-attacks-churches-feeding-homeless/

    http://libertycrier.com/half-baked-govt-restricts-homemade-cookie-sales/

    At least they are not charging the bystanders for getting in the way of the bullets, but maybe that’s next http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/05/nyregion/unarmed-man-is-charged-with-wounding-bystanders-shot-by-police-near-times-square.html?_r=0

    http://reason.com/blog/2013/12/05/cops-if-we-have-to-get-a-warrantwere-gon

    http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2013/12/5/jailed-whistleblowerstoedwardsnowdendonatcomehome.html

    More evidence needed?

  29. paulie

    Cult: a bunch of people ignoring tons of real world evidence and basic lessons learned in kindergarten to believe an
    Omnipotent State: can in practice, and has the moral right to, solve any and every problem imaginable. That is that it is all knowing and all powerful, like a deity.

    Seems true to fit the available facts.

    But even if it’s just poetry that most people don’t understand, how is it hurting the LP? The vast majority of people who have heard of or even taken a look at the LP have never noticed or harped on that turn of phrase.

  30. Robert Capozzi

    PF, I would change any specific language that is not plausibly actionable in the next 4 years.

    I’d lose specific mentions of the gold standard, although I’m OK with mentioning it as an option.

    I’d be less concerned with some of the stretch goals in the platform if there was qualifying language acknowledging that the ideas in the platform are aspirational, not specific “demands.”

    I share this in the wake of Mandela’s passing. He was far more effective and attractive as a chill exponent of peace and reconciliation. Angry extremist firebrands are either disregarded at best, jailed or killed at worst. When they are successful, they – in the modern era, at least – exponents of increased statism.

    As for the disturbing moves of the surveillance state, are you suggesting they ARE a CotOS? I’d love to see a L party that is at the table, reversing such severe dysfuntions. But to say they are a cult wanting an all-powerful state is, to me and for me, an overstatement.

    Since you and Starchild use the terms “more”or “less” L, do you consider yourself “more” L than, say, me? If so, what metric do you use to determine more/less L.

    For my part, I’d say we are equally L, just that we have different approaches to what constitutes effective political strategy, and a wise approach to theory.

  31. Wes Wagner

    Paulie

    It is not all public. Just like the full level that the LNC was involved in the Oregon mess is not fully public. The latter will most likely come to light because there are real tangible liability issues associated with that.

    The Portland thing is too old to be politically useful, but is useful intelligence in knowing how to defeat a political enemy. Thus it is likely it will not be disclosed.

  32. Robert Capozzi

    PF, my take is that the CotOS is emblematic of a failed approach to politics and political theory. It is the emperor with no clothes that reactionary Randian Rothbardians undergird their political thought systems all too frequently. CotOS’s continued existence in the SoP represents a kind of tacit enabling a self-defeating thought system that is the enemy of liberty, much like Joe McCarthy’s bizarre antics damaged the cause of anti-communism.

  33. Joseph Buchman Post author

    paulie @ December 9, 2013 at 8:34 am

    “So…we’ve done this here before, and I guess we could use the years old thread or start a new one, but does anyone have proposed platform planks or plank changes they would like to discuss here publicly?”

    I’m not sure about the other members of the Committee (not that they need to be here to start/continue that discussion), but FYI (and For Everyone’s Information), I am here, monitoring and collecting platform-related ideas. We can use this thread or start new ones for each plank. I’ll leave that up to the other IPR Editors.

    As for my own bias, I’d like to see a more radical platform, one that lives up to the “Give me Liberty or Give me Death” commitment of our Founders (or at least those I respect). As a former tenured professor of Marketing (Utah Valley State, now Utah Valley University), my bias is that the more radical messages, aside from being Principled, also generate more word-of-mouth, more controversy, more media, more ridicule, but also more discussion, and ultimately (perhaps not in the short-term) more votes.

    Not that I’m confident, nor do I see from the historical record anything other than rare exceptions, that voting ever resulted in more liberty for anyone (paraphrasing Ernie Hancock at Libertopia couple of years ago here).

    That said, from what I understand of Robert’s Rules of Order, the chair is expected to remain neutral in debate, and serve as a tie-breaker rather than influencer. That chair will be elected at our first in-person meeting, and I doubt it will be me (or that I’d seek the position).

  34. paulie

    As for the disturbing moves of the surveillance state, are you suggesting they ARE a CotOS? I’d love to see a L party that is at the table, reversing such severe dysfuntions. But to say they are a cult wanting an all-powerful state is, to me and for me, an overstatement.

    It doesn’t strike me as an overstatement, but I really don’t see it as a big deal either way. Few people even notice it, much less care, and I have more pressing probems to worry about. See the links I posted earlier for some examples.

    Since you and Starchild use the terms “more”or “less” L, do you consider yourself “more” L than, say, me? If so, what metric do you use to determine more/less L.

    I find it more useful to judge positions, not people. More libertarian positions are ones that substitute voluntary solution to coercive/monopoly ones.

    For my part, I’d say we are equally L, just that we have different approaches to what constitutes effective political strategy, and a wise approach to theory.

    That’s entirely possible. I won’t worry about it too much until you tell me government is too small, or just the right size and scope. If that ever happens there will be more point to arguing over this. Until it does, let’s get there first.

  35. George Phillies

    How about calling for the impeachment of Clapper and Alexander for perjury and treason. That ought to be a bit controversial, but both sides are defensible.

  36. Robert Capozzi

    pf: I find it more useful to judge positions, not people. More libertarian positions are ones that substitute voluntary solution to coercive/monopoly ones.

    me: I see. So, in your mind, the platform would be “more” L if it said something like:

    “We believe national defense should be abolished in favor of private solutions, such as territory and property protection being provided by insurance companies. There is no social ill or risk that the private market cannot provide as effectively, efficiently, and – most importantly – morally.”

    By your definition, I’d say this is the better, “more” L language. I can’t say it’d be wise positioning, though, as my guess is most would recoil in horror from such a plank.

  37. paulie

    Yeah, that would be more libertarian, but I agree that it would not be good positioning.

    I’d make my plank directional without specifying any determined endpoint.

    Thus

    3.1 National Defense

    We support the maintenance of a sufficient military to defend the United States against aggression. The United States should both avoid entangling alliances and abandon its attempts to act as policeman for the world. We oppose any form of compulsory national service.

    I would eliminate the first sentence (although arguably it is defensible from an anarchist position, in that the United States could mean “territory currently claimed by the US government” and defense could mean a militia system of voluntarily funded, staffed, and non-monopoly defense….hardly anyone would ever read it that way).

    The other two sentences are fine. Both minarchists and anarchists can agree that those would be steps in the correct direction.

    We don’t have to state either the apparently regime-supporting assertion we currently have nor the head in the clouds anarchism you are proposing as an example of an absurd plank (I take it).

    3.2 The defense of the country requires that we have adequate intelligence to detect and to counter threats to domestic security. This requirement must not take priority over maintaining the civil liberties of our citizens. The Constitution and Bill of Rights shall not be suspended even during time of war. Intelligence agencies that legitimately seek to preserve the security of the nation must be subject to oversight and transparency. We oppose the government’s use of secret classifications to keep from the public information that it should have, especially that which shows that the government has violated the law.

    I would begin by saying something like: Countering threats to domestic security must not take priority over maintaining the civil liberties of our citizens.

    The sentence about the constitution is fine. While I think the constitution is far from perfect, the practical question under consideration there is not whether to move beyond the constitution in a more pro-freedom direction.

    “Intelligence agencies that legitimately seek to preserve the security of the nation must be subject to oversight and transparency”

    I would say something like: Intelligence agencies must be subject to oversight and transparency or be shut down.

    The last sentence is fine.

    3.3 International Affairs

    American foreign policy should seek an America at peace with the world. Our foreign policy should emphasize defense against attack from abroad and enhance the likelihood of peace by avoiding foreign entanglements. We would end the current U.S. government policy of foreign intervention, including military and economic aid. We recognize the right of all people to resist tyranny and defend themselves and their rights. We condemn the use of force, and especially the use of terrorism, against the innocent, regardless of whether such acts are committed by governments or by political or revolutionary groups.

    No major problem with this section, but I would strike the words “emphasize defense against attack from abroad and.”

    Hopefully I am conveyng the idea here.

    That’s not to say those would be ideal planks, just illustrating what I mean by using directional language.

  38. Wes Wagner

    I would still advocate for abolishing the platform.

    The membership of the party defines what libertarian is through their actions, campaigns, deeds, writings, etc… … not some “cult of omnipotant libertarianism”, established by a couple hundred people who care enough to show up to a farcical ceremony.

  39. Dave Terry

    RC, responding to PF; “So, in your mind, the platform would be “more” L if it said something like: “We believe national defense should be abolished in favor of private solutions”

    PF, responding to RC: “Yeah, that would be more libertarian, but I agree that it would not be good positioning.”

    So HOW do you figure that insanity and suicide are more libertarian but not good positioning.

    PF; Quoting the current platform; “We support the maintenance of a sufficient military to defend the United States against aggression.”

    PF: “I would eliminate the first sentence (although arguably it is defensible from an anarchist position, in that the United States could mean “territory currently claimed by the US government” and defense could mean a militia system of voluntarily funded, staffed, and non-monopoly defense….hardly anyone would ever read it that way).

    Only an idiot would “read it that way”. PLEASE tell us Porky, what is “unlibertarian” about self-defense?

  40. Dave Terry

    WW: “I would still advocate for abolishing the platform.”

    Yeah. Then the LP could be all things to all men, exactly like our Democrat and Republican counterparts.

    “Never put it in writing, or you’ll live to regret it!’

  41. paulie

    Sure Wes. And then we could have all kinds of non-libertarians running around espousing all kinds of crap and we wouldn’t even be able to say it’s against our platform.

    Can’t say I agree.

    All hail the cult of omnipotent mutualist self-governors in the fight against the system 🙂

  42. paulie

    Wes, FYI, also, the platform has been the only tool we have been able to use to stop or correct many unlibertarian statements going out in our party’s name in the past.

    Without a platform it is highly likely we would soon become a replay of the Reform Party circa 2000.

  43. paulie

    Joe, as a starting point, I would recommend getting all the past platforms you can. Language that has been in past platforms should be easy to defend.

  44. paulie

    Starchild:

    Worst. Marketing. Ever. LOL!!!

    Maybe.

    Or maybe, being this blatant is basically them telling everyone: yeah, we don’t have to be subtle anymore. WTF are you going to do about it?

    Sure, it’s “in your face”……but I think that’s intentional.

  45. Wes Wagner

    ” paulie December 9, 2013 at 11:12 pm

    Wes, FYI, also, the platform has been the only tool we have been able to use to stop or correct many unlibertarian statements going out in our party’s name in the past. ”

    If this is true, you have really serious problems that a platform can’t solve.

  46. Steve M

    Political party candidates routinely ignore their party’s platforms. I am more in favor of a series of online resolutions attacking what we dislike and supporting what we like.

    Rather then a handful of individuals passing a gaggle of planks…. Take them one at a time and create an online petition and invite all libertarians and their friends to come and sign it. In the process building a large database of email addresses that we can then call out to for further actions.

    For example, George suggests a plank calling for General Alexander to be Prosecuted for Treason to the American People by his violation of Our Constitutional Rights and Perjury for his lying under oath to Congress.

    We should put our best minds to drafting this resolution, and then send invites to all libertarians and all friends to sign the petition.

  47. paulie

    Political party candidates routinely ignore their party’s platforms.

    Yes, but if they get too far out of line we can use it to dissociate ourselves. It also applies to positions taken by HQ and party spokespeople at all levels.

    Rather then a handful of individuals passing a gaggle of planks…. Take them one at a time and create an online petition and invite all libertarians and their friends to come and sign it. In the process building a large database of email addresses that we can then call out to for further actions.

    Why not both?

  48. Robert Capozzi

    PF quotes platform: We oppose any form of compulsory national service.

    me: You say you’re OK with this sentence. And, yet, you are a big fan of juries and jury nullification, yes? Seems contradictory, unprincipled, even.

    Help me to see my error, or understand the nuance surrounding “any form.”

  49. Marc Montoni

    Paulie said:

    Joe, as a starting point, I would recommend getting all the past platforms you can.

    Some are already archived on LPedia.

    Holtz has a bunch up on his page; but last time I looked at that page it was missing 1974, 1978, 1982, 1984, and 1988.

    I put both the 1974 Platform as well as the1978 Platform up on my Google Drive.

    In addition, the scan of 1980 on Holtz’ site is all but illegible, so I did a fresh scan of the 1980 Platform as well.

    Bonnie Scott also has an archive of older LP platforms on one of her pages.

    Language that has been in past platforms should be easy to defend.

    Then why did so many whiny, weak-kneed libertarians decide they didn’t have the stones to defend much of that language?

  50. paulie

    And, yet, you are a big fan of juries and jury nullification, yes? Seems contradictory, unprincipled, even.

    Help me to see my error, or understand the nuance surrounding “any form.”

    Don’t fret, help is on the way!

    I oppose mandatory jury service. I support voluntary jury service.

    I support fully informed juries. In the absence of official acknowledgement of long held rights of jurors that go back centuries in our legal tradition, I support guerilla and political campaigns to publicize this right. I support the LP being on board with such campaigns and making it a top issue.

    I would expect that in a hypothetical future where jury rights to judge the law as well as the facts are universally known and acknowledged that juries would not have trouble finding volunteers.

    I believe that many other necessary functions in society can and should be filled by volunteers without any form of compulsory service.

    I hope this helps!

  51. paulie

    Marc – thanks for the links!

    Then why did so many whiny, weak-kneed libertarians decide they didn’t have the stones to defend much of that language?

    Well, I think the first part of your question answers the second part. But I do like Holtz’s idea that cherry picking language from past platforms is easier to defend than brand new language.

    It’s just that we might cherry pick different parts of those platforms 🙂

  52. Marc Montoni

    Libertarians need training on how to ‘defend’ our positions by attacking our opponents. We have nothing to be embarrassed about. For every UN Moon Treaty we supposedly need to ‘defend’, the opposition has bloody, sliced-up or blown-up and waterboarded corpses they need to have dumped in their laps with a demand for an explanation. Not to mention a demand for lengthy jail time.

    Instead, we waste our time talking to the purity police who demand we say nothing about anything. Purity police who think — no matter *what* the issue is — that whatever we’re saying is “unacceptable to the public”.

  53. Robert Capozzi

    PF, thanks for clarifying. As is often the case, am I correct that you want to encourage conscripted jurors to — on a case-by-case basis — nullify laws they deem inappropriate, regardless of the potential outcome?

    Has the tradition of JN ever been used in the case of volunteer jurors? Does it concern you that volunteer jurors might have an axe to grind, making them inherently biased?

  54. paulie

    As is often the case, am I correct that you want to encourage conscripted jurors to — on a case-by-case basis — nullify laws they deem inappropriate, regardless of the potential outcome?

    I don’t disregard potential outcomes, but I think the real world outcomes strengthen my case. I would prefer juries not be conscripted, but even if they are, I still believe they should have the historic right of juries to judge the law and should be informed of this right – unofficially, if that is the only way to do it.

    Has the tradition of JN ever been used in the case of volunteer jurors?

    I would think so but I don’t know off the top of my head.

    Does it concern you that volunteer jurors might have an axe to grind, making them inherently biased?

    I find it less likely they would have an axe to grind than conscripted juries or professional juries or judges.

  55. Robert Capozzi

    MM: Instead, we waste our time talking to the purity police who demand we say nothing about anything.

    Me: Can you cite any examples of Ls doing this? I can’t think of any.

    I can think of many who don’t wish to have extreme, absolutist positions imposed on them, often with decades-old language contrived by a small number of people who, by all indications, had no apparent interest in addressing political dysfunction with practical remedies.

  56. Dave Terry

    Paulie wrote: “I oppose mandatory jury service. I support voluntary jury service”

    Capozzi wrote:” Does it concern you that volunteer jurors might have an axe to grind,
    making them inherently biased?

    Robert, that wind blows BOTH ways. Have you considered the “axe to grind” by a person
    compelled to be on a jury against his wishes. I’d HATE to be the guy on trial, who’s only there under duress.

    This ALSO has a bearing on involuntary military service; to wit the number of ‘fragging’ incidents in Vietnam. I’d also hate to be in command of soldiers who were dragged from their families and careers against their will.

  57. Dave Terry

    RC write: “I can think of many who don’t wish to have extreme, absolutist positions imposed on them, often with decades-old language contrived by a small number of people who, by all indications, had no apparent interest in addressing political dysfunction with practical remedies.

    CLEARLY, partisan politics is NOT the proper venue for these “wild flowers”. Also just as CLEARLY, political action through a “party”, by that or any other name REQUIRES at least a modicum of unity or consensus, otherwise you have a bevy of cats (not that there aren’t many desirable feline traits – but political activity is DEFINITELY – not one of them.

    If you can’t accept the fundamental “absolutist positions” of the LP, MAYBE your best course is to find another party or start a PAC of your own.

  58. Robert Capozzi

    PF and DT, yes, it’s hard to say with any certainty how jury nullifcation with or without conscripts’d work on a widespread basis. I’m not even so sure we can KNOW how it worked with conscripts in the days of yore. It was invoked now and again, apparently, but I’m skeptical that there’s comprehensive data on the matter. And there’s a LOT more laws now than then!

    DT, I certainly agree that having a concensus around a mean is helpful for any party. It’s funny to me that if I challenge other Ls to check their premises (many of which no longer work for me) that I start getting told I should find another venue for political expression. Seems kinda like a dysfunctional reaction to me. Frankly, I’m not all that interested, but I would prefer to see liberty advance, and self-marginalization seems like a poor way to do so.

    Love, however, is the only absolute that I can grok. It seems we live in a relativistic world on every level I can discern…more Van Gogh than Mondrian!

  59. Dave Terry

    RC: Having a “consensus” is not helpful for a political party, it is absolutely ESSENTIAL. Perhaps the solution to this discussion is to stop discussing “premises” in the abstract, and talk about fundamental “ideals” in their objective “concrete” manifestations.

    Can you cite specific examples of those premises of self-declared libertarians that you identify as either illogical, irrelevant or immoral? I suspect that a LOT of “chaff” will fall away from the wheat, if you do so.

  60. Robert Capozzi

    DT, my assessment is the ruling Rs and Ds have not had consensus on a number of issues for the past 100+ years, so I don’t agree with your premise…it’s not “essential” at all.

    As for “illogical, irrelevant or immoral” premises held by some Ls, I really don’t do “morality,” as I find it to be a quagmire of opinion. I could probably go on for volumes, but I find the NAP to be certainly irrelevant to most near-term political discussion. The NAP’s logic is fine as far as it goes, and its sentiment is sweet and attractive to me.

    Hope that answers your question.

  61. Dave Terry

    RC> “my assessment is the ruling Rs and Ds have not had consensus on a number of issues for the past 100+ years, so I don’t agree with your premise…it’s not “essential” at all.”

    But loyalists from both parties “imagine” that there is consensus and “imagine that there is a definite dis-consensus between the two parties. Both are fallacies.

    BUT, that doesn’t mean that consensus is not very essential. By what process do you believe that a THIRD party, ANY third party will have any effect if it simply mirrors to two existing parties.

    The popularity and use of the word “libertarian” is growing at a remarkably fast rate, as more and more people discover libertarianism and adapt it as their own philosophy. There is also a growing anti-libertarian backlash in the Republican Party from traditional conservatives and neo-conservatives who feel threatened by this rapid growth of libertarian ideas and the liberty movement. This is true of the Obama supporters as well.

    Do you think that this would have occurred if there was no CLEAR idea of what libertarianism entails?

  62. Robert Capozzi

    DT, yes, I agree that L has gained in popularity. My take is that is mostly because of Ron Paul.

    But others come to associate with L-ism from other traditions.

    I’d say L-ism’s branding is a mish-mosh. Is it Ayn Randian unvarnished, selfishness exalted? Gold bugs and gun nuts holed up in the mountains, waiting out the Apocalypse? Druggies who are OK with profit? Geeks who when not writing code or gaming have memorized the definition of evenly rotating economy and Hoppe’s insurance company theories?

    Are Ls socially liberals and fiscal conservatives? Anarchists? The extreme end of the Tea Party?

  63. Marc Montoni

    Sigh. Someone deployed the keyboard commandos, again, I see.

    So much to do and so little willingness to get up off one’s duff to do them. Truly sad.

  64. Robert Capozzi

    PF, MM wants to “do things,” but the LM is based on half-baked concepts. That, as I see it, is a case of “ready, fire, aim”. It’s important to get the fundamentals in the neighborhood of right before taking action. Otherwise, the action could contribute to make the dysfunction worse, or at least to be part of the solution.

  65. paulie

    If I believed

    A) that the libertarian movement is based on half-baked concepts and

    B) that I could somehow fix it,

    “getting the fundamentals right before taking action” might make sense.

    However, I think we already have the fundamentals right, and if we don’t, there’s no time to get them right and no likelihood that any of us here could cause them to become right.

    Action is the only alternative I see, but if you choose not to act you still have made a choice.

  66. Robert Capozzi

    PF: no likelihood that any of us here could cause them to become right.

    ME: Yes, and that includes me, too. I share my ideas simply to share them with the hope that others might find them useful. I have zero expectations of results.

    I would say that I would have liked to’ve heard from someone like me when I was a Randian/Rothbardian, prior to my full-blown adoption of that thought system. It’d of saved me a lot of time and pain. Still, ultimately, it’s ALL good.

    Or, as Limp Bizkit told us: “Do we always gotta be inside a lie?” but cautions us: “‘Cause hate is all the world has even seen lately” yet reminds us: “But everything happens for a reason.”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bPD6YiBFG1Q

    pf: Action is the only alternative I see, but if you choose not to act you still have made a choice.

    me: Yes, Mr. Anderson, every moment you have a choice, red pill or blue.

    Pouring a fluid that happens to be gasoline on a fire might well be indicated for you. Just don’t be surprised if the flames get larger. 😉

  67. Robert Capozzi

    pf: there’s no time to get them (the fundamentals)right and no likelihood that any of us here could cause them to become right.

    me: Patience really is a virtue. I would also say that there has been SOME movement away from rigid Randian/Rothbardism, albeit slowly.

    There was, for ex., a vote in Portland to nearly got the 7/8ths needed to delete the false (or poor poetry) CotOS language. A decade or 2 earlier, such a vote might not’ve even gotten to the floor.

    And the “private nukes” clause was strongly dropped, also in 06.

    Like Mr. Anderson is told early in THE MATRIX by Morpheus, “You’ve felt it your entire life, that there’s something wrong with the world.”

    It is that recognition that is like sand in the oyster, in this case, of the LM itself. When something is off kilter, and it’s within one’s control, one fixes it as best one can. For a collective like a party to fix itself, it requires the members to first recognize the problem and to choose against the state of denial they’ve been in for all too long.

  68. paulie

    When something is off kilter, and it’s within one’s control, one fixes it as best one can. For a collective like a party to fix itself, it requires the members to first recognize the problem and to choose against the state of denial they’ve been in for all too long

    Like I said – to each their own. Im more concerned with things being off kilter in the world at large, and while I see some things in the party I think need to be changed, they are not the same things you think need to be changed. But the denial I am really concerned with is that of the non-libertarian public.

    For example via the Rabbit Hole on facebook:

    I have seen many disturbing stories online about people’s dogs being shot by the police. The excuse that is always used is that the police officer was in eminent danger. Can somebody please explain to me what eminent danger does a parakeet posed to an officer? This story goes beyond police brutality, this is police tyranny. Please read and share with others.
    http://filmingcops.com/cops-break-into-mothers-house-without-warrant-beat-her-children-and-kill-her-pet-parakeet/

  69. robert capozzi

    yes, certain single issues like this one seem addressable in the near term, even if the foundation is unstable. I support your efforts to curb excessive force by the police.

  70. Dave Terry

    Paulie quoting someone, I’m NOT sure WHO;
    “When something is off kilter, and it’s within one’s control, one fixes it as best one can. For a collective like a party to fix itself, it requires the members to first recognize the problem and to choose against the state of denial they’ve been in for all too long

    THIS IS THE MOST SENSIBLE COMMENT I’VE READ ON THIS LIST FOR A LONG TIME.

    RIGHT ON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  71. Dave Terry

    Mr. Frankel wrote: “Cool. I’m willing to work with whoever agrees with me on any given issue. We don’t have to agree about everything.”

    LOL! Does that include the troll who keeps calling you a dirty Jew? I’m absolutely positive that he and you MUST agree on at least ONE thing! Is this really ALL that you require?

    How about ME? How open minded can you be, when you (claim to) refuse to read anything I write and advise others to do the same?

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