LPHQ to members: run for office

Email from LPHQ to its list:

Dear Libertarian,

Have you considered running for office?

New Jersey and Virginia have statewide elections this year and have been recruiting heavily for those.

Other states hold their statewide elections in 2018.

Regardless of where you live, there are likely many local races going on in your area in the next year or two years.

All too often local races are not contested or are non-partisan and that gives us special opportunities for advancing the Libertarian Party.

If you are contemplating a 2018 run, now is the time to lay the foundation.

Some states even require that candidates who run in 2018 file paperwork in 2017. So, don’t delay.

If you are interested in running for office, please fill out this form.

If you send us your info through this form we’ll shoot the info over to your state party so that they can contact you. And we’ll send you links for online resources provided by the national party.

The more candidates we have on ballots, the more voters will realize that we are a growing party worthy of their consideration.

The more candidates we have on ballots, the more the news media will realize we are party ready to overthrow the two-party duopoly that has dominated American politics for too long.

The more candidates we have on ballots, the better we can advance liberty across America.

Will you help give liberty a voice by running for office as a Libertarian candidate?

Nicholas Sarwark
Chair, Libertarian National Committee

252 thoughts on “LPHQ to members: run for office

  1. Andrew McCarrick

    Why? Without significant financial support from the LNC you’ll just keep perpetuating the idea that Libs are never ending losers in the minds of voters. This leads to voter fatigue… Nobody wants to be on a losing team forever.

  2. paulie

    Why?

    For various reasons including but not limited to:

    You can get more people to consider libertarian ideas and cause some of them to become libertarians, cause some to find out what they believed all along has a name, cause some to get active in the party and become the future candidates, campaign staff, etc.

    You can give people someone to vote for.

    You can get your opponents to consider the merits of your ideas.

    You can hold the balance of power and put pressure on those who do get elected to change policies so as to win your voters and potentially change who wins the election.

    You can find yourself in an unexpected situation where winning becomes plausible even though it did not seem that way at the outset.

    You can gain experience for a more serious run in the future.

    You can help support other candidates and make them look like part of a bigger team, thus helping them increase vote totals and maybe get some of them elected.

  3. Chuck Moulton

    Electing Libertarians to municipal office is realistically achievable in the short term. Running candidates for higher level office may not result in electoral victories, but it’s a free (or cheap) advertising opportunity for the libertarian message and specific libertarian policies.

    This email has already generated good leads in Pennsylvania.

  4. Andrew McCarrick

    Oh, I’m still trying, with a new party that will be dumping millions of dollars into their candidates. Not to mention I’m launching a new news channel that will purposefully leave out Libs from the conversation.

    And George was that comment directed at me? I will never again in my life vote for a Republican, they’re ALL authoritarian scum. 2018 will likely be Dem for me, so I can try to help flip the house to the Dems (my current rep. Is unfortunately Repub). I’ve only voted once in my life and out of the dozens races that were up, I voted for 1 Repub. In fact, I went for Clinton for president.

  5. Just Some Random Guy

    @ paulie

    Don’t expect money to fall like manna from heaven from the LNC. You will not even come close to winning unless you learn to connect with the voters in your district and raise money – usually, primarily from the people you seek to represent.

    Also, as part of the reason the candidates can struggle is lack of funds, those who see this as a problem should consider donating some money to their campaigns in order to help them succeed. Even if it’s a small amount, enough people doing it can make a difference. I do try to make a small donation to various third party candidates; every little bit helps.

  6. Andrew McCarrick

    The ultimate problem is the LNC doesn’t even do widespread platform marketing. I’m not even talking candidate support, I’m simply talking brand building and awareness. Where’s your facebook, Twitter and YouTube ads that say “the is who we are and this is what we believe”? You can’t even do that?

  7. Andy

    Andrew McCarrick said: “2018 will likely be Dem for me, so I can try to help flip the house to the Dems”

    You just lost any credibility that you might have had right here.

    You criticize Libertarians, yet you think that voting for Democrats is somehow going to solve our problems?

    Get real.

  8. Thomas L. Knapp

    “Everything you mentioned is great in theory, but has never once had panned out in reality.”

    Well, except for the thousands of times it has.

  9. NewFederalist

    “Nobody wants to be on a losing team forever.” – Andrew McCarrick

    Cubs?

  10. Tony From Long Island

    Andrew: I long ago realized I will never vote for a Republican again. I did only once – for Rick Lazio over Hillary for senate in 2000.

    I always approached libertarianism from the view of a social liberal, so I have no problem voting for Democrats.

    Yesterday, a Democrat won the open state assembly seat in my district that had been red for decades.

    http://thehill.com/homenews/state-watch/334890-sanders-delegate-wins-ny-state-election-in-district-that-voted-big-for

    Next week, A Dem might win the Montana Congressional race (with the Libertarian maybe pulling 7 – 10). Next Month A Dem might win the Georgia congressional race . .

    The Trump backlash is real. #BlueWave2018

    It must make Andy nuts!

    On the flipside, however, hopefully it will convince libertarian leaning republicans to abandon the sinking ship and join the LP.

  11. paulie

    Where’s your facebook, Twitter and YouTube ads that say “the is who we are and this is what we believe”?

    The main LP FB group has about 750,000 likes and followers. We have twitter and youtube accounts as well. There are also state, county and local groups, candidates, caucuses and affinity groups, etc. I know LPHQ FB has done ads in the past. Not sure if that is ongoing now. I’m in favor of project fundraising, which would let those who care about FB ads to donate to that specifically.

  12. paulie

    Posted at LP.org and email blast from LPHQ:


    Now Hiring

    Our Party didn’t slow down its growth or hard work after the 2016 election.

    In fact, we doubled down and are pushing forward aggressively in preparation for 2018 and 2020.

    There are so many elements to this but I’ll quickly name some
    highlights:

    – pursuing 50 state ballot access so that every American will have the option to vote Libertarian again in 2018;

    – upgrading our infrastructure and IT systems to better serve our members and candidates and better communicate with voters;

    – suing the Federal Elections Commission and Commission on Presidential Debates for fair treatment.

    In order to further expand our capabilities and services for our candidates and affiliates, we need to expand our staff.

    Right now, we are taking applications for two new positions: Press Secretary and Candidate Support Specialist.

    Click the titles above to read the job descriptions and for information on how to apply.

    Thus far in 2017 donors have been very generous and we are exceeding historical trends on fundraising. So, to make these two positions happen, we need to expand the budget by just $30,000.

    This is an incredible bargain for the great value that these two staffers will provide for the party nationwide.

    The Press Secretary will pursue press coverage for Libertarians and this will have a great effect at increasing the public’s awareness of our party and candidates at all levels. This will later translate into votes for our candidates.

    The Candidate Support Specialist will recruit and train Libertarian candidates across the country. Our Chair has set a goal for us to have 3 times the number of Libertarian candidates on ballots in 2018 than we did in 2016. That means we need to recruit and train about 2,000 candidates as soon as possible.

    We are dreaming big, for 2018, 2020 and beyond. Please invest as we work to make these dreams a reality.

    If you’d like to donate towards the Press Secretary position, please click here.

    If you’d like to donate towards the Candidate Support Specialist position, please click here.

    As always, thank you!

  13. paulie

    That relates to Andrew McCarrick’s complaint about lack of LNC support for candidates and regarding greater advertising of the party and its positions.

    Oh, I’m still trying, with a new party that will be dumping millions of dollars into their candidates.

    What’s it called? Wondering if I have heard of it yet. Or perhaps it’s a secret until it gets unveiled? Does it have a libertarian ideology? If not, that’s not very relevant to the LP. Does it actually have millions of dollars? I’ve seen a lot of party launch efforts where they talked big until they encountered the reality of surviving and trying to prosper as an alt party in the US. For all the big talk, in the last 45 years that the LP has been around, no US alt party of any ideology that runs nationally has eclipsed the LP on a sustained basis across numerous performance metrics. You would really have to go back to the early 20th century, when ballot access laws and the amounts of money spent by the dinosaur parties were vastly different than now, to find an alt party that sustained a higher level of performance for decades. In recent decades, the only US alt parties that have truly eclipsed the LP were flash-in-the-pan efforts centered around a dominant personality that went as quickly as they came. Can your new party do better? It’s possible, but past results show it’s not likely. And if you can, what kind of policy direction is this new party pushing?

  14. Andy

    Tony From Long Island said: “The Trump backlash is real. #BlueWave2018

    It must make Andy nuts!”

    Voting for Democrats or Republicans is a waste of time, and counterproductive, with only very rare exceptions.

  15. TomP

    As someone who was attracted to the LP by last year’s Presidential election, and whose former (Republican) party left homeless by its nomination of Trump, I definitely agree with the message to encourage people who support the LP to run.

    However, I do think there is room for improvement in terms of how much support both the national party and the state parties provide for candidates, judging at least based on five special elections for state legislative seats and congressional races that have been or are being contested this year. These races include:

    1. Special election for Virginia State Senate District 9, held January 10, 2017. The LP Candidate, Corey Fauconier was in a two way race with Democrat Jennifer McClelland, who won. Fauconier received about 9% of the vote.
    2. Special election for Virginia House of Delegates District 71, held February 7, 2017. The LP candidate, John W. Barcklay was in a three way race with a Democrat and an Independent. Barclay received about 6% of the vote.
    3. Special election for the 10th Senate District in Delaware, held February 25, 2017. The LP candidate, Joe Lanzendorfer was in a three way race with the Democrat Stephanie Hansen and Republican John Marino. Hansen won. Lanzendorfer received about 2% of the vote.
    4. Special election for Kansas 4, held April 10, 2017. The LP candidate, Chris Rockhold was in a three way race with Republican Ron Estes (who won) and James Thompson, the Democrat. Rockhold received about 2% of the vote.
    5. Special election for Montana’s at large congressional seat, to be held tomorrow, May 25, 2017 (with mail in balloting as an option already underway). The Libertarian candidate, Mark Wicks is in a three way race with Greg Gianforte, the Republican, and Rob Quist, the Democrat.

    For the four races already run, I think the LP candidates did a decent job campaigning, with the resources they had. In many cases, they made some good political arguments. I do think that both the national and state parties, however, could have done a better job supporting these candidates. The support doesn’t necessarily have to be financial. The support I’m talking about is advertising the candidacies on the state party websites and social media platforms. For example, in the Delaware race, I don’t recall any mention whatsoever of Lanzendorfer’s campaign (the national website did mention his candidacy).

    I really hope that the party can get behind the Wicks candidacy. Wicks is a strong candidate, and is running against two highly flawed old party candidates (who are flawed in many different ways). Gianforte comes across as a rich guy (which he is ) out of touch with ordinary people, and without deep roots in the state. Quist has Montana roots, but is a mental lightweight (to put it mildly) with little in the way of personal accomplishment who stiffs creditors without any second thought. Wicks has none of these drawbacks.

  16. Tony From Long Island

    Tom: Congratulations on leaving the sinking ship called the GOP. Get used to seeing your candidates between 2 and 10%. However, with more and more people like you, that can improve.

  17. NewFederalist

    Tony- As a self proclaimed Democrat it appears to me that you make a less than terrific “Welcome Wagon” for the LP. However, your point to Tom P is well taken.

  18. Andrew McCarrick

    @paulie Name is being withheld due to entity formation and trademark issues. Still waiting to complete all of the legal process of formation, trademarking, etc.

    The ideology is classical liberal, moderate libertarian, socially liberal/progressive, and fiscally moderate. We’d lean (only slightly) “left”.

    Key platform points are:
    expanding the legislature in size (such that the Senate has 14 senators per state, and the house has no less than 1 rep per every 250,000 inhabitants),

    implementing proportional representation for the house of reps and single transferable for the senate,

    lowering the voting age to 16,

    lowering the drinking age to 18,

    reforming the entire executive agency system,

    reforming the education system to decentralize it (abolish the Federal Department of Ed and replace with an
    elected Education Council that has similar enforcement powers as the UN – aka no enforcement powers),

    replace unsubsidized Stafford student loans with “Stafford Zero” loans (0% interest for the life of the loan),

    implement a student loan repayment policy that credits the students loan payment at 110% of their actual payment amount (a payment of $100 reduces their balance by $110),

    reduce the size of the military by 50%,

    reduce individual income taxes by 50% on all brackets (10% goes to 5% for example),

    implement a national sales tax of 5% (with a prebate) and a fiscal transaction (credit card swipe/atm withdraw) tax of less than 1%,

    add a new corporate bracket of 50% for companies that make over $100,000,000 a year,

    abolish all corporate loopholes,

    break up the largest 5 banks,

    implement the anti-corruption act (https://anticorruptionact.org/),

    completely abolish the social security, medicaid, and medicare programs and go to the Singaporean model of a trust account that is in the name of the benefactor (the government requires $x amount of a contribution to each account a year, and will top off accounts that don’t meet that requirement); the account goes to the estate not to a government general fund,

    implement a negative income tax for those who make less than $20,000 a year by issuing a check for 40% of the difference between what they make and $20,000 (i.e; somebody who makes $8,000 would get ($20,000 – $8,000 x 40% = $4,800)); for those that make more than $20,000 the standard deduction would be $20,000,

    expand facilitating efforts to move off of fossil fuels,

    facilitate a privately run maglev high speed rail system,

    recognize Palestine as a legitimate country,

    recognize CryptoCurrencies and Gold/Silver as legitimate money,

    and the legalization of marijuana, prostitution, and gambling.

  19. Thomas L. Knapp

    Trying to trademark a political party name is a waste of time, money and effort. The first time a state affiliate breaks away from the national commitee and you try to make them stop using the name, they’ll tell you to go fuck yourself and any court you take the matter to will laugh you right out of the room.

  20. Tony From Long Island

    New Federalist – I was a member of the LP for years, so it does have a place in my heart. I just began to see things differently (but still hold many libertarian-ish positions). I hope more Republicans follow Tom’s lead.

  21. paulie

    I really hope that the party can get behind the Wicks candidacy. Wicks is a strong candidate, and is running against two highly flawed old party candidates (who are flawed in many different ways). Gianforte comes across as a rich guy (which he is ) out of touch with ordinary people, and without deep roots in the state. Quist has Montana roots, but is a mental lightweight (to put it mildly) with little in the way of personal accomplishment who stiffs creditors without any second thought. Wicks has none of these drawbacks.

    Wicks just got $5k allocated from the LNC. This happened despite the fact that LNC rarely donates directly to candidates, despite the fact that by the time the vote is concluded only a few days are left in the campaign – less than a week iirc – and despite what I have been told are significant policy differences between the candidate and the party, although I don’t myself know what those are. The vote was close.

    I know that the two Virginia races, a different Delaware race and the Kansas race got coverage from LP.org and, I believe, social media accounts.

  22. NewFederalist

    ” I hope more Republicans follow Tom’s lead.” – Tony From Long Island

    And I hope Democrats do too!

  23. paulie

    AMC

    OK. And these millions of dollars you will give candidates, do you have people who have seriously pledged this money or do you assume political parties can just easily get millions of dollars because they came up with (let’s assume, since you think you can successfully trademark protect a party name) a cool name and some ideas? If and when you actually have the money call me and we can discuss ballot access. Of course you can also either reinvent the flat tire and see if you can get on in a significant number of states with an all-volunteer effort, or fall prey to political consultants that either charge you way too much or give you a low bid to get started and then crank up the cost overruns. My number is in the about IPR tab.

  24. Andrew McCarrick

    @Thomas Trademarks give you the ability to have ICANN pull a domain name from a violator of that trademark, thus you can easily pull the existing web presence out from underneath a rogue affiliate. All social platforms also follow the same procedures. From there you actively encourage any registered voters to unaffiliate in that state and re-affiliate with the new or alternate affiliate.

  25. paulie

    Many states have state level unlimited contribution limits… That’s all I’ll say.

    Yes, I know that. So do many people in the LP and other existing alt parties know this. That in itself does not just make the money materialize. You don’t have to tell me anything at all. If and when you actually have the money to get on the ballot in a lot of states, it would be to your benefit to give me a call. But you are also free to reinvent the flat tire or waste money as much as you want. Lots of other people already have.

  26. Andrew McCarrick

    @paulie just caught your rep!y here…. Simply having a facebook page, or Twitter account is passive. You need to actively produce video content, and actively market that content. Simp!y posting shit to social accounts and sitting back hoping it goes “viral” is asinine. Active engagement is required to actually have a legitimate web presence in 2017.

  27. paulie

    We do have video production. It could be better, but at the moment we don’t have the resources for that. Many individual FB posts have reach of undreds of thousands or even millions in some cases, with hundreds or thousands of comments, and they get posted several times each day. We have a whole back end team of volunteers to create and discuss the images and other content and help push them out.

    But, I do look forward to seeing how much better your new party can do it.

  28. TomP

    “I know that the two Virginia races, a different Delaware race and the Kansas race got coverage from LP.org and, I believe, social media accounts.”

    I noticed some mention of the first Virginia race on the Virginia party’s website, but there was no mention of the second one. I don’t recall seeing much about the second one on either Facebook or Twitter.

    I don’t recall seeing any mention of Lanzendorfer’s race on the State party website. The National website did mention his run. Lanzendorfer did have a powerful argument in his race: The Delaware Senate was evenly split, 10 Republicans and 10 Democrats. If the voters of his district had elected him, he would have had enormous power within the state legislature. That point should have been made more forcefully. It wasn’t likely that he would win, because the National Democratic party decided to spend well over $ 1 million on a state legislative race to make a point about Trump (as if the Delaware legislature could do anything about anything Trump might do).

    The broader point is that on-line promotion of special election candidacies is, at best, inconsistent, and leaves a good bit of room for improvement.

  29. paulie

    Dunno about the state party. State parties generally rely on one or two volunteers per state to run their websites and social media. I was talking about national, and I do believe all or almost all the races you mentioned were covered in a variety of ways by the national party.

    I do agree with you about special elections; we should make more effort to promote those.

  30. Thomas L. Knapp

    Andrew,

    Yes, it might be possible for your notional party to abuse trademark law for the purpose of fucking its state affiliates over if they don’t kow-tow.

    The question is how will you get strong state affiliates in the first place, having pre-announced such an intention?

  31. Tony From Long Island

    New Fed: ” . . . .” I hope more Republicans follow Tom’s lead.” – Tony From Long Island

    And I hope Democrats do too! . . . . ”

    I always felt I was a distinct minority in the LP – former Democrat . . . . Could be that most of the social issues that drew me are pretty much similar to Dem stances on the same issues, while the fiscal issues that draw republicans are much more . . .shall we say . . . extreme? I know that’s not the right word I’m thinking of but I think you know what I mean.

    Republicans generally don’t want to replace the IRS with nothing, just lower gov’t spending (though they never seem to do so) . . . .They don’t want to abolish social security . . .just reform it (though they never seem to do so) . . .

    While on the social side . . .I don’t think the libertarian stances on those issues are THAT FAR off general democrat thinking . .

    Did this post make any sense? I’m kinda rushing.

  32. George Dance

    Paulie – “Wicks just got $5k allocated from the LNC. This happened … despite what I have been told are significant policy differences between the candidate and the party, although I don’t myself know what those are.”

    You may be interested in what anti-Wicks Libertarians are telling the media:
    “Mark doesn’t represent all the libertarian values,” says party member Joe Paschal, of Townsend. “He’s sort of a Republican, alt-right kind of guy.”
    http://missoulanews.bigskypress.com/missoula/how-mark-wicks-wrapped-libertarians-around-the-axle/Content?oid=4100998

  33. Bondurant

    Funny to read comments from people claiming to be anti-authoritarian and then proclaim their support for Democrats (support for Hillary at that).

    There isn’t a single sane mind within the Democratic Party or their rank-and-file. Hell, at least the GOP produces a Justin Amash or Ron Paul. Dennis Kucinich was probably the only Democrat that wasn’t a goon but he’s been gone awhile now.

  34. paulie

    I wouldn’t say that. The last legislator we had switch to LP in NH was prior to that a Democrat, for example.

  35. Anthony Dlugos

    You may be interested in what anti-Wicks Libertarians are telling the media:
    “Mark doesn’t represent all the libertarian values,” says party member Joe Paschal, of Townsend. “He’s sort of a Republican, alt-right kind of guy.”
    http://missoulanews.bigskypress.com/missoula/how-mark-wicks-wrapped-libertarians-around-the-axle/Content?oid=4100998

    From the article:

    He’s expressed support for intervention in Syria and for building a border wall.

    Can’t say I’m happy with those positions.

  36. Andy

    “Bondurant
    May 24, 2017 at 22:21
    Funny to read comments from people claiming to be anti-authoritarian and then proclaim their support for Democrats (support for Hillary at that).

    There isn’t a single sane mind within the Democratic Party or their rank-and-file. Hell, at least the GOP produces a Justin Amash or Ron Paul. Dennis Kucinich was probably the only Democrat that wasn’t a goon but he’s been gone awhile now.”

    Cynthia McKinney was better than average as a Democrat.

  37. paulie

    He’s expressed support for intervention in Syria and for building a border wall.

    Can’t say I’m happy with those positions.

    Me neither. But, as I said I did hear he had significant differences with the LP platform earlier, I just did not know exactly what those were.

  38. NewFederalist

    Tony From Long Island: I think you are being too kind to Democrats. You mention several areas where Republicans say they will do something that at least remotely sound libertarian- ish and then when in power they don’t deliver. I do not disagree. The incredibly intrusive surveillance state set up by G.W. Bush et al has been untouched by the Dems when they had the chance. The perpetual wars went on unabated. The core of the defense budget (incredibly wasteful, unnecessary and downright ridiculous procurement programs) was virtually untouched. While the media feeds into the false perception that there are major differences between the two dominant parties, I believe the real major difference is in how they are spelled!

  39. TomP

    Wicks might not support all Libertarian positions (but frankly, which Libertarian does?) but he does adhere to the nonaggression principle in one respect: He doesn’t body slam reporters.

  40. paulie

    Good point. That is indeed a high standard when it comes to candidates for US House in Montana’s special election.

  41. Tony From Long Island

    New Fed:

    My post that you replied to referred to the social issue positions of the Democrats. While you see virtually no difference between the two major parties, I do. You see them in black or white, while everything has shades of Grey. There is no jumping from A to Z. You have to get to B first.

    We see the differences virtually every single day of the Trump shit storm and the monstrosity of a budget he proposed – which thankfully will go nowhere.

  42. paulie

    The Democrats’ commitment to civil liberties and peace is largely in rhetoric only, much like the Republicans’ commitment to government fiscal sanity and relatively free markets.

  43. Anthony Dlugos

    One main difference is that the Democrats may be more receptive to a new message right now, albeit not a pure 100% libertarian message.

  44. wredlich

    If you pick the right office (generally think small) and you run an effective campaign, you might well have a shot at winning.

    Now this is probably not what the LPHQ has in mind, but you might have your best shot running as a Democratic or Republican candidate in a primary if you live (as most of us do) in a gerrymandered district. Look for open seats (where the incumbent is not running for reelection).

  45. dL

    The Democrats’ commitment to civil liberties and peace is largely in rhetoric only, much like the Republicans’ commitment to government fiscal sanity and relatively free markets.

    Repubs/cons no longer even give lip service to “free markets.” And they never given much lip service to “fiscal sanity.” Their schtick since Reagan has been “supply side economics,” i.e, big government on a credit card.

  46. Thomas L. Knapp

    Democrats and Republicans are both very good at telling particular constituencies “we’re on your side, wink, nudge — and maybe someday, when there’s absolutely, positively no risk whatsoever in doing so, we’ll act on it. Until then, you just need to stick with us because those other guys are worse.”

  47. Andy

    “wredlich
    May 27, 2017 at 12:37
    If you pick the right office (generally think small) and you run an effective campaign, you might well have a shot at winning.

    Now this is probably not what the LPHQ has in mind, but you might have your best shot running as a Democratic or Republican candidate in a primary if you live (as most of us do) in a gerrymandered district. Look for open seats (where the incumbent is not running for reelection).”

    I’m not opposed to someone who holds libertarian values running for office as a Republican or a Democrat, so long as they don’t sell out their espoused principles if they get elected to office, but I think that it would be better for the ultimate long term success of the movement, if libertarians were to be elected under the Libertarian Party label rather than “hiding” behind the Republican or Democratic party labels.

  48. Anthony Dlugos

    paulie,

    that build may come by way of running under a Democratic or Republican name, at least initially.

    I live in a conservative district. I could run a decently libertarian campaign running as a democrat, and start with a 20-25% head start, not to mention having a larger audience to speak in front of just because of the party name.

    The message to Democrats would have to be masssaged somewhat, but there could be a downstream benefit to the LP via this tactic. Leaving aside Ron Paul’s way too paleocon, troofer-receptive message, its tough to argue that he DIDN’T have an impact on what the people of this country view as the libertarian message.

  49. dL

    We need to stop helping build those other parties and build our own.

    If one thinks the objective(or one of the objectives) of the LP is to win elections, then it follows that the LP must be a partisan political party. And partisan political parties do not have revolving door policies.

  50. Anthony Dlugos

    “And partisan political parties do not have revolving door policies.”

    Every party has a revolving door. Make the party strong enough that no one wants to leave.

    If you suggest you’re gonna lock the door behind people who enter, the qualified, i.e., those with something to lose, simply won’t show up in the first place.

  51. dL

    Every party has a revolving door.

    No, they don’t. Revolving door refers to officeholders switching back and forth between party affiliation. Can you name anyone who has succeeded in doing that? You know, besides Ron Paul. And Paul was bitterly opposed by the GOP establishment in his GOP congressional primary after he switched back.

  52. Anthony Dlugos

    You ignored my important second sentence:

    “Make the party strong enough that no one wants to leave.”

    The Republicans have a revolving door. Its just that, at the present time, very few members see any reason to leave.

    It stands to reason that, if the LP ever threatens major party status, there is going to be a period of time where there is some flux between the LP and the dinosaur parties.

    Granted, I don’t think people will be switching back and forth on a weekly basis or something. But some flux? Sure.

    Advising professional politicians that, if they come to our party, they can’t leave, strikes me as no way to “build a party.”

  53. paulie

    that build may come by way of running under a Democratic or Republican name, at least initially.

    Running with a party label helps build whatever party label you are running with, and it in turns hurts and helps the candidate in various ways.

  54. dL

    Granted, I don’t think people will be switching back and forth on a weekly basis or something. But some flux? Sure.

    Weekly basis? Do you have any examples in American political history of office holders successfully going from party A to party B back to party A? Keep in mind, I’m not referring to rank and file and/or mere party registration.

  55. Anthony Dlugos

    “Do you have any examples in American political history of office holders successfully going from party A to party B back to party A?”

    Teddy Roosevelt went from the Republican Party, to the Bull Moose, then back to the GOP.

    But I don’t want this to be a game of back and forth gotcha.

    One of the unfortunate side effects of the devolution of the LP into a quasi-religion is the idea that we have some sort of gnostic knowledge that we must protect from dinosaur party interlopers, or at a bare minimum a knowledge that we must make sure “statists” from the dinosaur parties…whom we are not going to trust initially…understand before we bestow on them the Operating Thetan Of All Things NAP designation that we cherish and the voters couldn’t give a sh*t about.

    The reality is our philosophy (socially tolerant, fiscally responsible, in other words, “don’t hurt people, don’t take their stuff”) is common sense life choices that anyone can grasp, takes no training, and one of the Demopublican parties could incorporate free of charge anytime they want.

    The point being, our philosophy is pretty mundane stuff, and should be presented as such. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure it out. Its value is close to zero.

    HOWEVER, what the LP doesn’t have at all, and with no means to acquire, is the institutional knowledge of how the halls of power in state capitals and in D.C. operate, the necessary vocational skills (usually law degrees) required to pass laws, the connections to policy makers, lobbyists, fundraisers, et al that is required in the political arena. No amount of education in the NAP and libertarian philosophy can impart those necessary attributes.

    Therefore, to potential defectors from the dinosaur parties, we have almost nothing to offer and virtually nothing to lose. They have everything we need and almost everything to lose. We’re in no position to make any demands. If one of them wants to defect and join us, we get our knees and pucker the lips. Any one of them (especially if they are still working politicians) has more of that institutional knowledge than our entire party put together. If Massie, (to give an example) is with us for a month then goes back to the GOP, its probably more valuable than a lifetime’s worth of reading Rothbard and Nock.

    Any other way of looking at it is a grave misconception. Go ejaculate on a copy of the platform and come back in the afterglow when you’re thinking clearly and understand our trifling little place in the American political scene.

  56. Andy

    Anthony Dlugos said: “The point being, our philosophy is pretty mundane stuff, and should be presented as such. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure”

    Yet Gary Johnson has never been able to figure this out.

  57. Anthony Dlugos

    George Wallace?

    Gotta love my LP. We’re the only hooker in the joint that pretends we’re virgins and demands the john loves us.

  58. Anthony Dlugos

    Andy,

    In the political arena, Johnson figured it out how to use the philosophy reasonably well.

    In the world of conspiracy theory nuttery and ISIS-level exclusionary dogmatism, your understanding of the philosophy reigns supreme.

  59. Thomas L. Knapp

    “In the political arena, Johnson figured it out how to use the philosophy reasonably well.”

    I guess so, if by “reasonably well” you mean he managed to initially put his own ceiling at 10-11% in an election in which a potted plant with 50-state ballot access and an active party behind it could have hit 15% easy, then crater that 10-11% to 3% by election day.

    For any other definition of “reasonably well,” not so much.

  60. Andy

    “Anthony Dlugos
    May 29, 2017 at 11:15
    Andy,

    In the political arena, Johnson figured it out how to use the philosophy reasonably well.”

    What evidence is there of this? He claimed to have been a libertarian since the 1980’s, and he was in fact a member of the LP for one year in the early 1990’s before being elected Governor or New Mexico, yet as Governor, he INCREASED state spending and the state debt, and he did not release even one person from jail or prison who was in for a victimless crime (he only pardoned 128 people, but these came AFTER these people had already served their time behind bars), and he in fact did nothing to reign in the police from going after people for victimless crimes.

    After re-joining the LP, and running for President, he still did not understand the Non-Aggression Principle, and when questioned about it at a debate at an LP state convention in Philadelphia he said that the question went over his head. During the course of both of his campaigns, he displayed a lack of knowledge of libertarian philosophy and a clear grasp of applying that philosophy to issue stances.

  61. paulie

    George Wallace?

    Dixiecrats were in a state of party flux in the mid to late 20th century. They continued to be mostly Democrats at the state and local for some time, but went through a long and painful divorce from the national Democrats over the course of several decades (roughly, 1948-76, with state and local politics lagging that by a few decades). Wallace was part of that. There’s no such regional dynamic at play today. If, for example, New England and Mid-Atlantic Republicans start dissociating from the National GOP in a similar fashion, there may be something to at least talk about, but as of right now there isn’t.

  62. Chuck Moulton

    Arlen Specter (former U.S. Senator from PA) flipped back and forth a few times between D & R. However, has last flip back to D (to avoid losing an R primary) was somewhat unsuccessful: he lost the D primary instead.

  63. paulie

    I guess so, if by “reasonably well” you mean he managed to initially put his own ceiling at 10-11% in an election in which a potted plant with 50-state ballot access and an active party behind it could have hit 15% easy, then crater that 10-11% to 3% by election day.

    Stein did not have 50 state access but she was reasonably close to it. I don’t think hitting 15% was nearly as easy as you do. Johnson probably did about as well as could have been reasonably expected in electoral results. He cratered near the end as most alt party campaigns tend to, although the cratering took place later in the process than usual. If it had been another LP nominee, and if that nominee was able to get as much media coverage as Johnson to begin with (a big if), I would have expected some similar cratering. Had that hypothetical nominee managed to get as high in the polls and maintain it for as long, there would have been an opposition/mainstream media line of attack within roughly the same time frame as Johnson’s gaffes were highlighted; if it was not gaffes it would have been reductio ad absurdum attacks on LP platform planks, or unearthing some embarrassing personal history, or attacking the nominee as unaccomplished, or making fun of his or her looks. And gaffes are not hard to find if you look for them; campaigning is grueling and sooner or later you will do or say something monumentally stupid after you get cameras and microphones shoved at your face at midnight or 5 am or whenever. Probably a few times.

  64. paulie

    Anthony – so your goal is to recreate the Reform Party circa 2000? I think the Reform Party post-2000 is a rather natural and predictable result of that.

    As for the LP, I think we should stick with the ideology that is our reason for existing in the first place. I don’t necessarily reject all crossovers but I don’t automatically accept any and all crossovers either. They should be examined on an individual basis with a mix of hope and skepticism.

  65. dL

    One of the unfortunate side effects of the devolution of the LP into a quasi-religion is the idea that we have some sort of gnostic knowledge that we must protect from dinosaur party interlopers, or at a bare minimum a knowledge that we must make sure “statists” from the dinosaur parties…whom we are not going to trust initially…understand before we bestow on them the Operating Thetan Of All Things NAP designation that we cherish and the voters couldn’t give a sh*t about.

    Straw man! What I’m referring to is political party mechanics 101. Applies to any party and has nothing to do w/ the specific party message/platform. What is the objective of a political party?
    (i) spread a message
    (ii) win
    (iii) all of the above

    If it’s (i) only, then a party could tolerate a revolving door***. The objective is to grow the message.

    If its (ii), then you have a partisan political party. Party C is not only in competition w/ Party A, party B …over message, it also in competition w/ A,B … over who should hold power. Party C’s message is that it is better for you, the voter, that party C holds power over party A,B. Partisan politics. Now, switch-overs certainly are welcome(and encouraged). But tolerating revolving door means: well, it really isn’t that important that party C hold power. Party B or party A can also do a bang up job for ya.

    If its (iii), then when (i) and (ii) conflict, one has to take precedence over the other. And its obvious from a party mechanics standpoint which one usually takes precedence: (ii) win. Why? Because, a big part of party’s message is that it is in the voter’s interest that party C hold power. Party’s have whips to enforce that. Whips are NOT ideological enforcers…they are party discipline enforcers.

    Conclusion:
    If you subscribe to (ii) or (iii), it makes no sense to say (1) the LP must moderate its message to win and (2) the LP should tolerate a revolving door policy. Unless, of course, one is just fine w/ the LP being a minor league subsidiary to one of the major parties. You know, get your feet wet at the branch office before being promoted to the head office. And send the past-the-prime head office dead weight down to the minor leagues.

    *** to clarify and reiterate, revolving door refers to office holders ,candidates and delegates, not rank and file members. Members come and go as they please.

  66. dL

    Arlen Specter

    Wikipedia tells me that Spectre never ran for office as a democrat until the very end. In the 1960s, he switched parties to run as a republican and held that party designation until his final re-election switch attempt. He doesn’t even qualify as a successive switcher(note: they are plenty of those).

    Switcher: Holds office as member of party A. Then switches to party B.
    Revolving Door politician: Holds office as member of party A. Then runs for office as party B. Then switches back to party A to run for office again. Party A tolerates that w/ open arms.

    Again, Ron Paul is the only successful revolving door politician I can come up w/ at the top of my head. But the GOP did not exactly welcome him back. He was denied leadership/chairmanships in congressional committees until the end by the GOP b/c of that switch.

  67. dL

    George Wallace?

    I stand corrected. Wikipedia tells me Wallace qualifies as another successful revolving door politician. So, Ron Paul and George Wallace. I imagine of ole George was alive today, he too could pull off a George Wallace Network. Which tells you a bit about the type of politician you have to be to pull off the feat of revolving door politician. The counter examples sort of serve to reinforce the claim, actually.

  68. paulie

    George Wallace was probably a better example. He was a Democrat in his terms as Governor in 1963-67, 1971-9 and 1983-7, as a presidential candidate in the primaries in 1964, 1972 and 1976, but in between had his AIP run in 1968 and schemed unsuccessfully to be Goldwater’s Republican running mate in 1964. However, that was during a period of regional party flux that is not in play currently.

  69. Anthony Dlugos

    paulie,

    re: Reform Party analogy.

    We should talk “frames of reference.”

    I know that, to many Libertarians (and Radicals especially), all other political philosophies/parties just look like variations of the same statist philosophy, but to 95% or more of the 130 million voters who typically vote, a candidate at the very bottom of the Nolan chart is a pretty revolutionary concept. The conjunction of federal decriminalization of marijuana and the FairTax alone makes a guy like Gary Johnson sui generis to the great mass of voters who can’t tell the difference between Mr. Rothbard and Mr. Rogers.

    The point is, a candidate like Governor Johnson is plenty libertarian to the average voter, and is not going to confuse any of them with the Reform Party, despite the fact that he’s nowhere near the apex of Nolan. Nor can the reform party’s desultory experience have any relevance to what might happen to a very bland (to us) party of social tolerance and fiscal responsibility.

  70. paulie

    The fraudulent “fair” tax is a whole separate issue, in that I consider it to actually be considerably worse than even the horrid system we have now, much less any utopian ideals of abolishing coercive taxation. But I was just taking your contention that we should get on our knees for any establishment party politician who would cross over seriously and on its own merits. That would mean regardless of ideology. They would not have to be libertarian-leaning at all. If that’s what you advocate, own it, and defend it. What you are doing instead is pointing out that Johnson is less statist than some other politicians. True, but that isn’t the question, as Johnson says he is done with running for office. What makes you think that the next crossover, or the one after that, especially if we fully embrace what we say above, would be libertarian leaning at all? As the label progressively loses whatever meaning it has, what’s to keep it from going full scale Reform Party 2000, followed by Reform Party post-2000?

    It’s one thing to quibble about how high or how low the ideological bar should be when evaluating potential candidates and how heavily that factor should be weighed against other factors in evaluating potential nominees. It’s quite another to suggest that no ideological bar should exist. Your statements above, taken literally, mean the latter. If that’s not what you meant, you should explain better. And if that was what you meant, you should defend it on its own merits rather than shifting ground to whether Johnson was libertarian enough or not, which is a separate question.

  71. NewFederalist

    Hmm… Ron Paul and George Wallace revolving door politicians. I voted for them both. Paul as a Libertarian in ’88 and later in the 2008 and 2012 Republican primaries. Wallace as an American Independent in
    ’68 and later in the ’72 Democratic primary.

  72. Mark

    And what if anything is that supposed to tell us, other than that you are at least 70 as of this November and like politicians who campaign in front of Confederate flags?

  73. Anthony Dlugos

    well, paulie, one thing is for sure: what you and what I consider “sufficiently libertarian” seem to be two appreciably different things.

  74. paulie

    Maybe. Tell me what, if anything, you think that would be, in regards to anything. If we can establish that you have a standard of any kind as far as that goes, we can quibble over where that bar should be. First, let’s establish whether you think there should be an ideological bar at all, of any kind.

  75. Andy

    Anthony has already said that if Mitt Romney were to show up at the Libertarian National Convention on 2020, join the party on the spot, and then declare himself to be a candidate for the party’s presidential nomination, that he would vote for him to be the nominee. This means that Anthony does not really have any standards, beyond who can wave around the fanciest “shiny badge” credentials, ideology and integrity be damned.

  76. Deran

    Since “Andy” is doing a lot of commenting on this post, I’m sorry to interrupt, but just this morning I heard an audio recording of the head of the Multnomah County GOP (Multnomah is the county in Oregon where that neonazi killed those two people who were standing up to that neonazi on public transit), and the boss of that county’s GOP was spouting the same line that Andy does – close the borders to keep out foreigners who “don’t love liberty”. I’m not suggesting guilt by association. I am suggesting that “foreigners” don’t love liberty does lead to nutters like that neonazi killing people who disagree with him. I’m not suggesting that “Andy’s” word caused those murders, I am suggesting that words do matter. And I’m suggesting that “Andy” is a racist in libertarian capitalist clothing.

  77. paulie

    Deran,

    For starters what do the Oregon murders have to do with this thread? Open thread exists for a reason and would have been fine for your comment.

    I’m moving the rest of my comment to open thread. Please move any replies to the threadjack subthread over there as well.

    [….]

    In any case, Deran or anyone else unless you can demonstrate a connection to the thread topic please take further replies to open thread.

  78. Tony From Long Island

    Paulie: ” . . . . . I’ve never heard Andy say anything that exhibited any kind of racism, prejudice or bigotry . . . ”

    He exhibits it regularly on IPR.

  79. Thomas L. Knapp

    Tony,

    Well, Paulie excluded the specific kinds of things Andy says on IPR. Sort of like “I’m sure my friend’s not a racist. After all, other than burning crosses on black people’s lawns, I’ve never noticed him acting like one.”

  80. Andy

    I do not know who Deran is, but I am suggesting that he is an idiot, and that he can go fuck himself.

  81. paulie

    I’ve moved the rest of my comment to open thread. Please move any replies to the threadjack subthread over there as well.

    [….]

    In any case, Deran or anyone else unless you can demonstrate a connection to the thread topic please take further replies to open thread.

  82. Andy

    So suggesting that until something is done about the welfare state, forced association and lack of private property, and mass democracy where rights can be voted away, that it is not a good idea to announce to the world that every socialist, communist, theocrat, and welfare leech on the planet is welcome to enter this land territory, which is already occupied by over 325 million people, supposedly makes one an awful “racist”, and I am somehow connected with people who murdered people in Oregon (a state where I have spent little time). and with some Republican who made some comment that sort of sounded like some comment that I made (but who I more than likely have big disagreements with since he is in the GOP, unless he is a Ron Paul Republican). Wow, this is a real stretch in “logic” (or lack thereof more appropriately).

    I do not know if this Deran character is in the LP or not, but if he is, it would be just another example of the irrational left wing Social Justice Warrior mentality polluting the Libertarian Party and misrepresenting libertarianism.

    Yes, I do not want people with hostile political ideologies pouring into the same land territory where I am located and sucking up tax money and influencing the political process. I favor libertarians breaking away from the rest of society and forming libertarian communities, based on contracts and property rights (do a search for The Libertarian Zone article posted here at IPR), and I favor keeping non-libertarians out, because non-libertarians will destroy a libertarian society.

  83. Anthony Dlugos

    paulie,

    An ideological bar of any kind? Yes, of course. I just indicated mine would be much more forgiving. For example, given this country’s circumstances…given where our Overton Window is…I think advocating for a Fair Tax is a sufficiently libertarian position. To the average voter, that is a comprehensible “smaller government/greater individual liberty” position.

    OTOH, while “Taxation is Theft/Eliminate the Income Tax and Replace It With Nothing” is more than sufficiently libertarian, given where our Overton Window is, not only is it not a comprehensible “smaller government/greater individual liberty” position to the average voter, it is downright counterproductive to that mission. In other words, the average voter does not think “wow, that’s really radical libertarianism” (a well-informed voter might), they just think, “that’s nuts” and dismiss it out of hand.

  84. Anthony Dlugos

    “Anthony has already said that if Mitt Romney were to show up at the Libertarian National Convention on 2020, join the party on the spot, and then declare himself to be a candidate for the party’s presidential nomination, that he would vote for him to be the nominee.”

    I didn’t say that. I said I would CONSIDER his candidacy for the nomination.

    But that’s just the thought process of a normal person who understands there is an executive level job…the most powerful executive level job on the planet, in fact…on the other side of the election for President. The janitor at Google may have been there 10 years, but that doesn’t make he or she any more qualified for the position of CEO than the professional executive who shows up on the last day of interviews for the job.

    You, Andy, on the other hand, wish to turn the party into a religious cult, replete with witch hunts and inquisitions and accusatory exclamations of STATIST! to anyone who doesn’t accept the cannon.

  85. paulie

    Anthony,

    Well, we do have a difference of opinion. I see the fraudulent “fair” tax as the opposite of a move in a libertarian direction, regardless of what average voters may or may not think of it. I don’t really want to go into a long fraudulent “fair” tax subthread either (been there and done that) but very briefly, I believe we will end up with a new tax on top of rather than instead of existing taxes despite whatever its proponents want or say they want. Also, getting almost everyone in the country used to getting money from the government every month, and having a tax that is most likely going to be invisible as it will be built into the shelf price of products, is a very, very anti-liberty move. Among quite a few other reasons why I strongly oppose the fraudulent “fair” tax. But, I don’t want to argue about those reasons. Suffice it to say that I do in fact favor incremental steps towards less government and do not consider the fraudulent “fair” tax to be one.

    But I did support Johnson in 2012 despite his support of the fraudulent “fair” tax as a “good starting point” for discussing how to simplify the tax system, which I clearly don’t think it is. So when we talk about where your bar is set, we aren’t talking about Johnson but more about such statements as you have made that Mitt Romney without significant changes to his views could be welcome as an LP presidential candidate, and your lack of a clear response on just who from the establishment would not be. For the moment, though, I’m just glad to hear that you do have an ideological bar of some sort, whatever it may be, although that does seem to contradict some of your statements further up in the thread.

  86. Tony From Long Island

    I guess Andy has given up trying to convince people of the benefits of a libertarian society. He’d rather just bar all people who are not libertarian from entering the country. . . . So who said he’s not a xenophobe?

    Why don’t you run for office, Andy? I’m sure you’d get really far.

  87. Anthony Dlugos

    Yes, let’s not get into a fair tax debate at this point. I think it is a good starting point, as Johnson indicated during the campaign. Just to reiterate, the reason we end up in different spots on the issue is that I look at incremental steps in the right direction based on where we as a nation are NOW, and you look at them from the perspective of the idealized end point. That’s my opinion on the matter.

    Now for a point of clarification:

    “So when we talk about where your bar is set, we aren’t talking about Johnson but more about such statements as you have made that Mitt Romney without significant changes to his views could be welcome as an LP presidential candidate, and your lack of a clear response on just who from the establishment would not be.”

    I didn’t say “without significant changes.”

    I DID say that any defection of an establishment politician to the LP would involve SOME level of a genuine conversion to libertarianism, but there is no way to tell just how much of a conversion occurred until it actually happens.

    The Libertarian Party I am a member of is not a quasi-religious organization or a cult. NO ONE is irredeemable. As unlikely as it is to occur, If Hillary Clinton declared tomorrow that she has defected to the Libertarian Party, I would not turn into a raving lunatic screaming “STATIST!!!!” I would hear her out. If she convinced me her switch was genuine, I would say nothing more than “Welcome, go and sin no more.”

    That doesn’t make me a weak fool. Frankly, to toot my own horn, It makes me strong. Accusing everyone around you of being a statist and unworthy of the Libertarian label doesn’t make you righteous. It makes you self-righteous. Don’t be like Andy. Its a prison of his own making.

  88. NewFederalist

    “I do not know if this Deran character is in the LP or not…” – Andy

    Wow! I am shocked. Deran has been a consistently articulate and excellent poster here for years. He is on the left but has always appeared to me to be a courteous and well informed individual who is able to disagree without being disagreeable.

  89. Tony From Long Island

    Anthony . . . I tried to make the same arguments for a long time until I realized that they didn’t want to hear it. The mantras {taxation is theft . . . replace it with nothing . . . . statist . . . NAP . . . ] are unbending. They want to remain a 1% of the vote party. For every member they gain, there are likely just as many like you and I, who see the futility.

    There’s no room in the LP for anyone who wavers from the mantras.

    Believe it or not, I was sad when I decided to stop sending dues.

  90. Jill Pyeatt

    I second NF’s comment. Deran is a long-time commenter with liberal views that I appreciate seeing expressed here. Nice to have you back, Deran.

  91. Thomas L. Knapp

    Tony, Tony, Tony …

    I am living proof that your comment is complete and utter bullshit, entirely at variance with reality.

    Yes, I believe that taxation is theft.

    Yes, I would like to eliminate the income tax and replace it with nothing, which would reduce federal revenues to what they were a few years ago.

    But I am also entirely fine with, and have in fact campaigned both as a candidate for political office and as an activist, incremental tax reductions.

    The “Fair” Tax is not an incremental tax deduction (it claims to be “revenue neutral”). It is not without negative additional consequences (including calling for putting every man, woman and child in America on a monthly federal welfare check from cradle to grave). It is exactly the opposite of a move in the right direction. That, not some idea that we’re only allowed to demand the end of all taxation and never anything short of that, is why I oppose it.

  92. Tony From Long Island

    TK, My post wasn’t really in reference to the “fair tax.” It was more in reference to rigidity of LP members in general – not every single member.

    I will also add, however, the my decision to stop paying dues also was due, in part, to my views shifting on several issues in a more liberal direction, but the rigidity and (what I saw as a) cult-like nature of the LP was another major factor.

  93. paulie

    Just to reiterate, the reason we end up in different spots on the issue is that I look at incremental steps in the right direction based on where we as a nation are NOW, and you look at them from the perspective of the idealized end point. That’s my opinion on the matter.

    Just to reiterate, that is completely wrong. I am in favor of incremental reductions and simplifications of taxes. I am against the fraudulent “fair” tax because I believe it does the exact opposite of that. I already said some of the reasons why. I don’t know why my prior comment was not clear and I don’t know how to make it any clearer.

  94. paulie

    I DID say that any defection of an establishment politician to the LP would involve SOME level of a genuine conversion to libertarianism, but there is no way to tell just how much of a conversion occurred until it actually happens.

    Or they could just be looking for another vehicle for themselves personally, not care much what it is called or what ideology it purports to represent and just keep pushing the same crap that they pushed when they were Demopublicans and that they would continue to push when they return to being Demopublicans. See, for example, Barr, Root.

    The Libertarian Party I am a member of is not a quasi-religious organization or a cult. NO ONE is irredeemable.

    Nor did I or anyone else here from what I remember say that it/they should be. The LP isn’t a cult, but it’s not just a corporation either. Corporations exist only to make money for their shareholders, not to promote an ideology. Political parties, especially ideologically based alt parties, exist much like religions to promote a certain set of ideas. Like religions, they welcome converts, but don’t necessarily promote them to the top immediately. That type of move makes more sense for a corporation, as the job of a Pepsi executive is not significantly different from the job of a Coke executive.

    If Pepsi hires away a Coke executive, provided that person can refrain from actually pushing Coke products or passing privileged information back to the Coke corporate office, it makes more sense than promoting a Pepsi janitor. But if the Pope decided to become an Anglican tomorrow, he would not necessarily be next in line for Archbishop of Canterbury. That’s because religious denominations at least in theory exist to do more than just make money and expand the organization. Likewise the LP exists to do more than just win electoral office; that’s one of several ways in which we seek to achieve our ultimate purpose which is “a world set free.” If a politician claims to have converted to libertarianism, we need to make sure not only that they have competence as politicians but that they have actually adopted our ideology. Experience shows that LP members tend to fall on the gullible side on that one, with less than stellar results by any measure, including electoral. Again, see Bob Barr for illustration by example.

    If Hillary Clinton declared tomorrow that she has defected to the Libertarian Party, I would not turn into a raving lunatic screaming “STATIST!!!!” I would hear her out. If she convinced me her switch was genuine, I would say nothing more than “Welcome, go and sin no more.”

    So would I. Whether I would want her to be our next presidential nominee is a separate question.

  95. paulie

    Someone should review this thread. Lots of imposters.

    We’ve already removed a bunch of imposter comments. If you suspect any others of being imposters please let me know which ones and I’ll check. It’s possible we could have missed some.

  96. paulie

    Wow! I am shocked. Deran has been a consistently articulate and excellent poster here for years. He is on the left but has always appeared to me to be a courteous and well informed individual who is able to disagree without being disagreeable.

    Yes, but remember, Andy is only here to spread his message, and the audience is of secondary importance, if that. He only reads other people’s comments as jumping-off points for his own.

  97. paulie

    Yes, I would like to eliminate the income tax and replace it with nothing, which would reduce federal revenues to what they were a few years ago.

    But I am also entirely fine with, and have in fact campaigned both as a candidate for political office and as an activist, incremental tax reductions.

    I would eliminate FICA/SS/payroll taxes first, then increase personal exemption from income taxes and eliminate withholding, then eliminate income tax, and finally get rid of corporate taxes. Those are the major federal sources of revenues/loot.

    The “Fair” Tax is not an incremental tax deduction (it claims to be “revenue neutral”). It is not without negative additional consequences (including calling for putting every man, woman and child in America on a monthly federal welfare check from cradle to grave). It is exactly the opposite of a move in the right direction. That, not some idea that we’re only allowed to demand the end of all taxation and never anything short of that, is why I oppose it.

    Exactly.

  98. Andy

    “Tony From Long Island
    May 30, 2017 at 13:26
    I guess Andy has given up trying to convince people of the benefits of a libertarian society. He’d rather just bar all people who are not libertarian from entering the country. . . . So who said he’s not a xenophobe?”

    I would say calling me a political ideologyphobe would be a more accurate statement, as in I’d prefer to not live around people who are of the wrong political ideology.

    “Why don’t you run for office, Andy? I’m sure you’d get really far.”

    I considered running for office back in the early 2000’s, but I never did it (I had considered running for a city or county office, or for the state legislature, or for US House). I don’t know if I will ever run for a political office or not. Probably not, but who knows?

  99. Andy

    Tom Knapp said: “The ‘Fair’ Tax is not an incremental tax deduction (it claims to be “revenue neutral”). It is not without negative additional consequences (including calling for putting every man, woman and child in America on a monthly federal welfare check from cradle to grave). It is exactly the opposite of a move in the right direction. That, not some idea that we’re only allowed to demand the end of all taxation and never anything short of that, is why I oppose it.”

    Paul said: “Just to reiterate, that is completely wrong. I am in favor of incremental reductions and simplifications of taxes. I am against the fraudulent ‘fair’ tax because I believe it does the exact opposite of that. I already said some of the reasons why. I don’t know why my prior comment was not clear and I don’t know how to make it any clearer.”

    I agree with Tom and Paul. The Fair Tax is a big sham. It is not an incremental step towards more liberty, it is just as bad, and maybe even worse, than the present income tax system. Libertarians should avoid the Fair Tax like the plague.

  100. Anthony Dlugos

    Tony From L.I.,

    You won’t find a more sympathetic person than me with regard to your sentiments in the post time stamped 14:55 today.

    I continue sending in dues and doing some work mainly from a “keep the lights on until the Overton Window moves” perspective.

    In other words, as self-destructive as the LP can be, we don’t nearly have the problems the dinosaur parties have, they’ll continue to bleed support…support that is far more amenable to a moderate libertarian message than they are to libertopia…and eventually, the quasi-religious element of the LP will eventually either leave or be grossly outnumbered.

  101. Anthony Dlugos

    “I would eliminate FICA/SS/payroll taxes first…”

    paulie,

    I’m only going to say this once: that is absolute political suicide. It has no chance of succeeding, not in this universe. 99.9% of the voters will be running for the hills away from a candidate who says that.

    I’ll reiterate what I said…no, I won’t. I’ll reiterate what YOU said, time stamp 16:04:

    “that’s one of several ways in which we seek to achieve our ultimate purpose which is “a world set free.”

    Now, I’ll reiterate what I said: The incremental steps I would propose are incremental steps that are politically feasible that won’t have people looking at us like we are nuts. You are looking at incremental steps towards your idealized end, which you readily admit is a “world set free.” You cannot possibly be concerned with what is politically feasible with such a utopian vision, which is why you can offhandedly suggest a candidate proposing the elimination of FICA/SS/payroll taxes FIRST. That is the end of any political campaign that suggests it, most assuredly so at the presidential level.

  102. Anthony Dlugos

    As an aside, any Presidential candidate that makes a policy suggesting like “eliminate FICA/SS/payroll taxes first,” is going to come from one of two groups:

    The Certifiably Insane (see Perry).

    People Telling You Exactly What You Want To Hear In Order to Grab The Platform Of A Presidential Nomination With 50-State Ballot Access For Self-Aggrandizing Purposes Knowing They Have No Chance to Win (see Petersen).

    This is true now and forevermore. End Of Story. Nobody normal running for any office is uttering that publicly.

  103. paulie

    that is absolute political suicide. It has no chance of succeeding, not in this universe. 99.9% of the voters will be running for the hills away from a candidate who says that.

    Doesn’t matter how many or few times you say it. I disagree. FICA/payroll taxes are highly regressive, and I recall reading progressives criticize them as well, even back when I was one myself. I think they could well be more politically feasible to get rid of first. SS and medicare themselves will be trickier to get rid of, but who said they have to be paid for with regressive payroll/FICA taxes? Certainly not you, since you think the fraudulent “fair” tax would be a step in the right direction.

    Now, I’ll reiterate what I said: The incremental steps I would propose

    I don’t consider the fraudulent “fair” tax to be an incremental step towards liberty. I consider it to be a big step away from liberty.

  104. dL

    The incremental steps I would propose are incremental steps that are politically feasible that won’t have people looking at us like we are nuts.

    Nuts? With Donald “His Pomposity, the Earl of Combover” Trump and the “Ruskies are under your bed” Dems, it appears “certified nut job” is an elective requirement these days. The “Overton Window” is The Emperor’s New Clothes….

  105. dL

    fraudulent “fair” tax

    Yeah, how does a regressive consumption tax manage to pick up the moniker of “fair tax”? Oh, I’m aware there is supposed to be some reimbursement check. Apart from opening up the poorest having to deal w/ the IRS(when they never had to do so before), “undocumented” people will not be getting that check. You are shifting the tax burden to the people at the absolute margins. That utter inanity does not belong in any shape or form in the LP. Period.

    Taxation is theft, but it can also be fair if the poorest of the poor fork over their entire share!

  106. Andy

    I read comments from other posters, but I do not always read every comment from every poster all of the time, nor do I keep up with the ideological leanings and political alignments of everyone who has ever posted here, particularly with lots of posters popping in and out over the years, and all of the troll posts under fake names.

    I do recall a Deran posting here, but I do not recall Deran’s political leanings. I am glad to read that he is not in the LP, and that he does not self identify as a libertarian (although I would welcome him if he altered some of his views, just as I would welcome anyone else who I would reasonably consider to be a libertarian).

  107. Thomas L. Knapp

    —–
    “I would eliminate FICA/SS/payroll taxes first…”

    paulie,

    I’m only going to say this once: that is absolute political suicide. It has no chance of succeeding, not in this universe. 99.9% of the voters will be running for the hills away from a candidate who says that.
    —–

    Jesus, Anthony. The above may be the clearest sign yet that you haven’t the slightest fucking idea what practical politics looks like and probably wouldn’t recognize it if it walked up behind you and whacked you across the ass with a bass fiddle.

    Does the name “Donald Trump” ring any bells? He’s supported on the idea by the Democratic Party’s ever-so-slightly-left-of-center faction, e.g. Kevin Drum of Mother Jones.

    The idea of eliminating FICA and financing Social Security and Medicare from general revenue is a mainstream perennial that will almost certainly happen in the next decade and that would have happened long ago if the separate tax setup hadn’t been so helpful in stretching out the life of the “Social Security is solvent! See, lockbox!” line.

  108. Andy

    Question for Anthony Dlugos: It is 2020 and you are a delegate to the Libertarian National Convention. It is time to vote for who the Libertarian Party’s candidate for President is going to be. There are three candidates who qualified for the debate on the main stage. They are Adam Kokesh, Larry Sharpe, and Mitt Romney, who joined the Libertarian Party two weeks before the national convention. Which candidate do you cast your vote for the presidential nomination, and why?

  109. Andy

    Paul said: “Experience shows that LP members tend to fall on the gullible side on that one, with less than stellar results by any measure, including electoral. Again, see Bob Barr for illustration by example.”

    Not all LP members are that gullible. Remember that I NEVER fell for Bob Barr, Wayne Root, Gary Johnson, etc…

    I was a Gary Johnson skeptic from day one, and ONCE AGAIN, I was PROVEN to be correct.

  110. Tony From Long Island

    I’m not sure how you were proven right when Gov. Johnson received the most votes of any LP candidate in it’s history by a mile and party membership increased quite nicely. . . .

    Comparing Barr and Johnson really is quite disingenuous.

    ————————————————-

    As for your question for AD . . . I would vote for the candidate who would get the most exposure for the party and gain the most votes and increase party membership since none of the three would actually win. . . . . . (P.S. that isn’t Kokesh or Sharp).

  111. Andy

    “Anthony Dlugos
    May 30, 2017 at 17:46
    Tony From L.I.,

    You won’t find a more sympathetic person than me with regard to your sentiments in the post time stamped 14:55 today.

    I continue sending in dues and doing some work mainly from a “keep the lights on until the Overton Window moves” perspective.

    In other words, as self-destructive as the LP can be, we don’t nearly have the problems the dinosaur parties have, they’ll continue to bleed support…support that is far more amenable to a moderate libertarian message than they are to libertopia…and eventually, the quasi-religious element of the LP will eventually either leave or be grossly outnumbered.”

    Why don’t you guys just form another political party? If your ideas are really so great, and you think that it is the “radical Libertarians” who are driving away potential big money donors, why don’t you guys form a new party, and then solicit donations from the big money donors you think are being driven away from the LP by radical Libertarians?

  112. Andy

    “Tony From Long Island
    May 31, 2017 at 08:49
    I’m not sure how you were proven right when Gov. Johnson received the most votes of any LP candidate in it’s history by a mile and party membership increased quite nicely. . . ”

    Yes, he did this in a year when the circumstances THE MOST FAVORABLE UNDER WHICH THE LP HAD EVER FIELDED A TICKET FOR PRESIDENT (due in large part to Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump), and when votes were up for most alternative candidates. Jill Stein received over 1.4 million votes, which is several times what she received in 2012, and she did this while only achieving ballot access in 44 states plus DC, and with less exposure than Johnson. Evan McMullin jumped in the race late, and only qualified for the ballot in 10 states, yet he received over 700,000 votes. Even Darrell Castle, who ran on a shoe string budget, and who only qualified for the ballot in 24 states, got over 203,000 votes, which is a raw vote total record for the Constitution Party in the presidential race.

    Polls indicated that there was real potential for the Libertarian Party’s presidential ticket to get a lot more than the 3% of the vote that Johnson/Weld received, and if anything, Johnson/Weld under-performed.

    The circumstances of this past election were so favorable that almost any ticket that the LP put up would have received more votes than normal for an LP presidential ticket.

    The biggest failures of the Johnson/Weld ticket was their FAILURE to promote the Libertarian Party’s platform, and the philosophy, and the way they frequently ran from or downplayed the Libertarian Party’s label, and the way they made asses out of themselves (and us, for being part of a party that nominated them) on national television on several occasions.

    Like I have said here before, I have been on the ground gathering petition signatures in several states since Johnson/Weld got nominated as the LP’s 2016 presidential ticket, and I’ve heard a LOT of negative feedback from the public, and the negative feedback has to do with Johnson and Weld’s lack of libertarian principles, and/or them making asses out of themselves on national television. I have heard similar things from other petition circulators.

    I know that some of you people out there live in cocoons, as in you don’t go out and talk to real people in the real world very often, so if you doubt what I am saying, I challenge you to go out and do this. Go out and talk to a few thousand people, either while gathering petition signatures or voter registrations for the Libertarians, or while just doing Libertarian outreach.

    The data I have received says that a lot of the votes that went to Johnson/Weld were not really so much votes for them, or for the Libertarian Party or philosophy, but rather they were protest votes against Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Out of those who supported the Johnson/Weld ticket, a lot of that support was only lukewarm. and a lot of it was from people who were relatively low information voters. Those who are more well informed, and who are libertarian, or who lean libertarian, largely view the Johnson/Weld ticket as a disappointment.

    “Comparing Barr and Johnson really is quite disingenuous.”

    It really is not. Both came to the LP from the Republican Party. Neither of them ever really embraced the libertarian philosophy. Both of them ran uninspiring campaigns, and are now viewed by many as having been disappointments. Both of their campaigns were filled with financial waste. Both of them sucked up to the political establishment.

  113. Thomas L. Knapp

    “keep the lights on until the Overton Window moves”

    That’s your problem right there.

    The Overton Window doesn’t move by itself. It GETS moved.

    It can get moved by failure on the part of the institutions within it, or it can get moved by good marketing on the institutions outside it or at its edges.

    Either way, it is going to move in the direction of the institutions outside it or at its edges that best market their offering.

    “We’re just like those other guys, but better because … well, just because” is not a message that will pull the window toward its messengers.

    I expect to have three things to say about this on today’s podcast, insha’Allah and the creek don’t rise.

  114. Anthony Dlugos

    “The Overton Window doesn’t move by itself. It GETS moved.”

    Agreed. But not by political parties. Political parties are poor vehicles to move the Window, except at the margins, and except as an ancillary effect. . All you need is 50% + 1 to win an election.

    There are vehicles to move the Window on, say, drug re-legalization by demanding an immediate end to the drug war, release of all non-violent drug offenders, and wiping the criminal record clean of any nonviolent offenders.

    But once you agree to play in the arena of politics, you have to account for voter rational ignorance, and therefore the impossibility of educating them on, say, the history, costs, and consequences of the drug war. You take what you can get knowing average voter investment in the electoral process is minimal, as it should be in a rational sense.

    Voter investment being as minimal as it is negates the oft-mentioned Radical tactic of starting from the pure libertarian position then accepting less. In other words, I’ll demand a complete end to the drug war and accept decriminalization of marijuana. Because once you present your plan of a complete and immediate end of the drug war, investment of 99% of the American voters in your candidacy drops to zero.

  115. Tony From Long Island

    Andy, I often think you are actually a Robot. You are incapable of any thought outside your programmed parameters. . . . Though even robots probably have more empathy than you do

    Whether he under-performed or not, what I said was still true. He received the most voted in LP history by a mile and the membership grew.

  116. Anthony Dlugos

    Thomas,

    You are right that its possible to propose elimination of the FICA/SS/payroll taxes…if its couched in a greater plan to continue funding the federal government in some other way (at some relatively similar level), as say, Governor Johnson did with regard to the FairTax. Governor Johnson also said he had no intention of ending Social Security, a statement that sent the Radical/Purists into a hysterical tizzy.

    When I made my suggestion to Paulie that proposing an end to FICA/SS/payroll taxes first would be political suicide, I was assuming that it was part of some sort of “end social security now” radical libertarian position.

    If you think proposing an end to the FICA tax, corporate taxes, and personal income taxes, and replacing it with a revenue neutral (or close to revenue neutral) FairTax that also insures the long-term viability of Social Security is, in practical political terms, the same thing as proposing an end to the FICA tax in order to reach our goal of a “world set free,” then I have to say it isn’t I who doesn’t understand what practical politics looks like. (See rational ignorance argument above).

  117. Anthony Dlugos

    Andy,

    Kokesh is totally and 100% unqualified to be an executive, or to hold any public office whatsoever. There is no chance I would support him for any office. He will probably be incarcerated a couple more times before 2020. This may…and I say MAY…make him a good activist, but it does nothing to make him qualified for any public office. In fact, it makes him less so.

    Sharpe is almost certainly going to piss off the radical/purist set before 2020. He already has pissed off some of them when he came out for censure of Vohra because of Vohra’s brain dead dumb comments about the military, teachers, parents, and just about everyone else who votes in this country. In any case, its unlikely that, by 2020, he’ll have the sort of experience in public office that would compare to a Romney who hypothetically defected to the LP.

    Why do you ask the same questions over and over again? Between Kokesh, Sharpe, and Romney, only one of them is qualified at this time for the actual job in question (the Presidency).

  118. paulie

    “Experience shows that LP members tend to fall on the gullible side on that one, with less than stellar results by any measure, including electoral. Again, see Bob Barr for illustration by example.”

    Not all LP members are that gullible.

    Yes, there’s a difference between members tend to be on the gullible side and all members are gullible.

  119. paulie

    As for your question for AD . . . I would vote for the candidate who would get the most exposure for the party and gain the most votes and increase party membership since none of the three would actually win. . . . . . (P.S. that isn’t Kokesh or Sharp).

    Taken literally that means no ideological bar at all. In which case, see above about Reform Party 2000 and Reform Party post-2000.

  120. paulie

    Why don’t you guys just form another political party? If your ideas are really so great, and you think that it is the “radical Libertarians” who are driving away potential big money donors, why don’t you guys form a new party, and then solicit donations from the big money donors you think are being driven away from the LP by radical Libertarians?

    If Andrew McCarrick is to be believed some people are about to test that theory. We’ll see how well it works out.

  121. Anthony Dlugos

    From my experience, the purist/radical set tends to be the most gullible. A person can enter any Libertarian nominating process with no college degree, no resume, zero experience, and a shady past, simply profess fealty to the NAP and “bold” libertarinism (they have nothing to lose otherwise), and the purists buy it hook, line, and sinker.

  122. Anthony Dlugos

    Why would the moderates in the party leave? We won the last three nominations. We’re in the majority. I don’t want anyone to leave, but if folks like Andy want to push the issue, then I have one thing to say, “don’t let the door hit your ass on the way out.”

    I love this purist argument that Johnson-Weld failed to meet expectations in the election, when the guy they supported (presumably Perry), got 6% of the delegates in a room full of Libertarians.

  123. paulie

    Polls indicated that there was real potential for the Libertarian Party’s presidential ticket to get a lot more than the 3% of the vote that Johnson/Weld received, and if anything, Johnson/Weld under-performed.

    Part of that was because of their past as governors. Other LP nominees could have been excluded from a lot more polls and coverage. Part of it was the common pattern of alt parties doing better in the polls than in the election. In their case the cratering took place later than usual in the campaign, but it took place. Once expectations of making the COPD debates deflated it was a matter of time. Any ticket the LP would have had would have been attacked in one way or another at that point. In Johnson’s case gaffes proved to be the target of opportunity, but any number of things could have sufficed.

    The circumstances of this past election were so favorable that almost any ticket that the LP put up would have received more votes than normal for an LP presidential ticket.

    Maybe a Jill Stein level result could have been expected with other would-be nominees.

    “Comparing Barr and Johnson really is quite disingenuous.”

    It really is not. Both came to the LP from the Republican Party. Neither of them ever really embraced the libertarian philosophy. Both of them ran uninspiring campaigns, and are now viewed by many as having been disappointments. Both of their campaigns were filled with financial waste. Both of them sucked up to the political establishment.

    I’m more with Tony on that one. Unlike Johnson, Barr never outperformed the 0.4 +/- 0.1% that the LP presidential ticket ended up with in every presidential election from 1984 to 2008. Barr-Root did not cause any uptick in party membership, unlike what happened last year. Barr was back in the Republican Party and endorsing non-libertarian Republicans shortly after his presidential run, and in fact ran a PAC that raised a lot more money for non-libertarian Republicans than it did for Libertarians even when he was on the LNC. Johnson stuck with the LP in between two presidential runs, and while he may be done with running for office – at least he is saying so now – I don’t see him working for the opposition. Unlike Barr, Johnson was frequently called a libertarian Republican when he was in that party. Unlike Barr, Johnson had been a member of the LP decades earlier – and technically remained a non-dues-paying member ever afterwards.

    So, there are both differences and similarities.

  124. paulie

    The Overton Window doesn’t move by itself. It GETS moved.

    It can get moved by failure on the part of the institutions within it, or it can get moved by good marketing on the institutions outside it or at its edges.

    Either way, it is going to move in the direction of the institutions outside it or at its edges that best market their offering.

    “We’re just like those other guys, but better because … well, just because” is not a message that will pull the window toward its messengers.

    Exactly.

  125. Andy

    “Tony From Long Island
    May 31, 2017 at 09:54
    Andy, I often think you are actually a Robot. You are incapable of any thought outside your programmed parameters. . . . Though even robots probably have more empathy than you do

    Whether he under-performed or not, what I said was still true. He received the most voted in LP history by a mile and the membership grew.”

    Once again, he received the most votes for an LP candidate for President, IN THE EASIEST ELECTION CIRCUMSTANCES IN WHICH THE LP HAS EVER FIELDED A PRESIDENTIAL TICKET.

    The LP could have put up any combination of the main candidates for the presidential and vice presidential nominations at the national convention, and that candidate would have received more votes than normal for an LP presidential ticket. Whether or not any combination of candidates would have received more votes than Johnson/Weld is up for debate (I think that it is possible that at least some combinations could have, but this is a separate issue), but I think that it is very realistic to say that any combination of the other main candidates at the convention would have received more votes than normal for an LP presidential ticket.

    Also, as I have said multiple times, what is the point of getting votes as a Libertarian Party candidate, if you throw libertarian principles out the window to the extent that Johnson/Weld did? What is the point in getting votes for the sake of getting votes?

    You brought up an increase in LP membership. Yes, membership went up a bit, going to around 20,000 and something, but that is still MUCH LESS than what party membership was 16-17 years ago, when it reached around 33,000 and something. and keep in mind that the population of the country has increased since then. Also, I’ve got to question just how committed to the Libertarian Party and the principles of the party that some of these new members are. I have also heard that dues paying membership is already slipping.

  126. paulie

    But not by political parties. Political parties are poor vehicles to move the Window, except at the margins, and except as an ancillary effect. . All you need is 50% + 1 to win an election.

    You need significantly less than that to swing the balance of power in national elections and significantly less than that national share to win some local offices. To see how political parties in fact did exactly that, and did in fact move the window in the past, study the history of the socialist, populist, progressive and prohibitionist parties in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. They, in fact, moved the window and turned policies that were at one time radical pipe dreams into reality, and then into part of what now looks like part of an unassailable establishment consensus. Parties moved the window before, and in fact have done so throughout American history. Parties can and should do it again.

  127. Andy

    Paul said: “I’m more with Tony on that one. Unlike Johnson, Barr never outperformed the 0.4 +/- 0.1% that the LP presidential ticket ended up with in every presidential election from 1984 to 2008. Barr-Root did not cause any uptick in party membership, unlike what happened last year. Barr was back in the Republican Party and endorsing non-libertarian Republicans shortly after his presidential run,”

    I disagree. Barr and Johnson are more similar than you are acting like they are.

    In terms of votes received, Johnson ran under more favorable circumstances than Barr (for one thing, Barr had to contend with Ralph Nader, while Johnson did not have to contend with any higher profile minor party or independent candidates).

    Johnson, and to my knowledge, Weld, are not back in the Republican Party (yet), but during the course of their campaign as LP candidates, they gushed over Mitt Romney, saying that they’d appoint him to a high level position in their administration if they were elected, like Secretary of State, and they also said that they’d appoint some mainstream Republicans to the Supreme Court. They even gushed over their Democratic Party opponent, Hillary Clinton, calling her a “wonderful public servant,” and Weld practically endorsed her. Bob Barr and Wayne Root at least waited until their campaign as LP candidates was long over before they went back to gushing over and endorsing mainstream Republican candidates.

  128. Andy

    Paul said: “Johnson stuck with the LP in between two presidential runs,”

    Yeah, he stuck around so he could pull another con job, bring in a bunch more money for his Republican consultants, and sabotage the Libertarian message again.

    “and while he may be done with running for office – at least he is saying so now – I don’t see him working for the opposition.”

    He’s already done enough damage, whether he goes to work outright for the opposition or not (he’s probably been covertly working for the opposition all along).

  129. Thomas L. Knapp

    There are effectively two market shares in electoral politics:

    1) Plurality/Majority, aka winner

    2) Non-Plurality/Majority, aka loser

    Johnson achieved the same market share as Hospers, McBride, Clark, Bergland, Paul, Marrou, Browne, Badnarik and Barr.

  130. paulie

    When I made my suggestion to Paulie that proposing an end to FICA/SS/payroll taxes first would be political suicide, I was assuming that it was part of some sort of “end social security now” radical libertarian position.

    You assumed incorrectly. We were only discussing the revenue side. I’m in favor of gradual, progressive devolution of the tax system. On the spending side, I still haven’t seen anything better than Harry Browne’s plan for defusing the big entitlements. But that’s a separate issue.

  131. Andy

    What kind of Libertarian would want Mitt Romney to be in his administration, and would call Hillary Clinton, “a wonderful public servant”?

    SOMEBODY WHO IS NOT REALLY A LIBERTARIAN, AS IN A FAKE LIBERTARIAN.

  132. paulie

    Why do you ask the same questions over and over again? Between Kokesh, Sharpe, and Romney, only one of them is qualified at this time for the actual job in question (the Presidency).

    The actual job in question is chief salesman of the LP. None of them would be likely to become president, not even Romney as an LP candidate, and if Romney did become president as an LP candidate I don’t think that would be a good thing, as I don’t believe he would govern as a libertarian and would permanently make the party and even the word libertarian less than useless and squander all the effort that had been put into building that brand up.

  133. Andy

    “Thomas L. Knapp
    May 31, 2017 at 10:51
    There are effectively two market shares in electoral politics:

    1) Plurality/Majority, aka winner

    2) Non-Plurality/Majority, aka loser

    Johnson achieved the same market share as Hospers, McBride, Clark, Bergland, Paul, Marrou, Browne, Badnarik and Barr.”

    There is another measure of success for alternative party candidates, and that is the number of people they convert to strongly adopting the message of the alternative party under which they ran

    Going by this standard. Johnson/Weld were miserable failures.

  134. Anthony Dlugos

    Thomas,

    Sure, but limiting our analysis to Libertarians makes the sample size too small, and bifurcating the sample into only winners and losers implies that we don’t know what it takes to win elections, when we do know what it takes, and elections are not contested to reward extreme philosophical positions. You get to 50% +1 long before that.

  135. paulie

    From my experience, the purist/radical set tends to be the most gullible. A person can enter any Libertarian nominating process with no college degree, no resume, zero experience, and a shady past, simply profess fealty to the NAP and “bold” libertarinism (they have nothing to lose otherwise), and the purists buy it hook, line, and sinker.

    If they are good at persuading people that’s fine, since their job is to look and sound good on TV, radio and in front of crowds, not to tweet the nuclear launch codes by mistake at 4 am. Leave the latter to blustering billionaire businessman buffoons and career politicians.

  136. Anthony Dlugos

    “The actual job in question is chief salesman of the LP.”

    Wrong. Its abundantly clear that is not what the voters look for to fill any political office. Your sales job falls, and has fallen, on deaf ears.

  137. paulie

    Why would the moderates in the party leave? We won the last three nominations. We’re in the majority

    Slight majority and more than one ballot. Don’t get too comfortable.

    I love this purist argument that Johnson-Weld failed to meet expectations in the election, when the guy they supported (presumably Perry), got 6% of the delegates in a room full of Libertarians.

    Perry did not present very well, but even if you are correct, what does one have to do with the other? Both statements could be true; there is no contradiction between them.

  138. Anthony Dlugos

    There’s no reason to believe Perry, or any anarchist, could have secured more or as many votes as Johnson-Weld, given that he got 6% of the votes at a Libertarian convention. That isn’t dispositive, but its damn close.

  139. paulie

    Whether or not any combination of candidates would have received more votes than Johnson/Weld is up for debate

    Highly unlikely.

    very realistic to say that any combination of the other main candidates at the convention would have received more votes than normal for an LP presidential ticket.

    Yes, probably in the range of what Stein ended up with.

    You brought up an increase in LP membership. Yes, membership went up a bit, going to around 20,000 and something, but that is still MUCH LESS than what party membership was 16-17 years ago, when it reached around 33,000 and something.

    That’s only one kind of membership. Non-dues paying membership is at its highest level ever, as is LP voter registration. And it took many years to build it up to 33k and many years to come back down to 11k. Going up from there to 20k in one year is significant. There are also significant impediments we face now that we did not then, such as BCRA/McCain-Feingold and Top Two Only.

    and keep in mind that the population of the country has increased since then.

    The increase has not been very significant. It was 281 million in 2000 and 308 million in 2010. It may be say 320 million now, but that doesn’t change the numbers we are discussing that much.

    Also, I’ve got to question just how committed to the Libertarian Party and the principles of the party that some of these new members are.

    That’s always been true, as I met many members in the 1990s and 2000s that were not very committed to either the party or the ideology and I meet many new members now who are (at least as far as I can tell).

    I have also heard that dues paying membership is already slipping.

    Yes, by a few hundred. That’s very minimal slippage compared to some past post-election drops.

  140. Thomas L. Knapp

    “Sure, but limiting our analysis to Libertarians makes the sample size too small, and bifurcating the sample into only winners and losers implies that we don’t know what it takes to win elections, when we do know what it takes”

    Not sure who this “we” you’re speaking of is.

    I know what it takes for a third party to win elections (a sudden, massive voter shift to AT LEAST the very edge of the Overton Window).

    You seem to think that third parties win elections the same way major parties do (by throwing as much money as possible at candidates who are willing to perpetually fuck around in the center of the Overton Window). They don’t.

  141. Anthony Dlugos

    “You seem to think that third parties win elections the same way major parties do.”

    A) I’m not interested in keeping the LP as a third party.

    B) Otherwise, yes I do believe the LP is gonna win the same way other parties win.

  142. paulie

    You seem to think that third parties win elections the same way major parties do (by throwing as much money as possible at candidates who are willing to perpetually fuck around in the center of the Overton Window). They don’t.

    Correct, because that space is already well covered by the establishment parties. There is no significant reason for a voter in that space to take a risk on something other than the tried and true which outweighs any disgruntlement they feel.

  143. Anthony Dlugos

    The only reason to suggest third parties win in a “different way,” and moving public policy in our direction by winning elections is a tactic “already covered by the establishment parties” is to ensure the LP stays a small, ineffectual debating club/radical educational mission that nominates the catastrophically unqualified.

  144. paulie

    Wrong. Its abundantly clear that is not what the voters look for to fill any political office. Your sales job falls, and has fallen, on deaf ears.

    No. You’re wrong. We aren’t going to fill the political office of president. We have other things we are trying to get out of it. Yes, it will fall on a lot of deaf ears, but not all the ears it will fall on will be deaf. Some of the ears it will fall on will not vote for us for president but will vote for us downticket thanks to the efforts of our presidential ticket. Some will become our future donors and candidates themselves. Some will never vote for us but will become involved in the libertarian movement in other ways.

  145. George Dance

    Andy- “I’m not sure how you were proven right when Gov. Johnson received the most votes of any LP candidate in it’s history by a mile and party membership increased quite nicely. . . ”

    Yes, he did this in a year when the circumstances THE MOST FAVORABLE UNDER WHICH THE LP HAD EVER FIELDED A TICKET FOR PRESIDENT (due in large part to Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump),

    You and the other Johnson-bashers (not to mention the anti-Libertarians) keep saying this (and now you’re SCREAMING it), but it’s not true. It doesn’t even make sense.

    The more detested a candidate is by a voter, the more likely that voter would be to vote against him (or her). Voting against a candidate means voting to stop him; which means voting for the candidate with the best chance to defeat him. It does not mean “throwing your vote away” on someone not seen as likely to win.

    “and when votes were up for most alternative candidates. Jill Stein received over 1.4 million votes, which is several times what she received in 2012, and she did this while only achieving ballot access in 44 states plus DC, and with less exposure than Johnson.”

    It is not true that Stein received less exposure (from mid-summer to fall) from the part of the MSM (virtually all of it) that Justin Raimondo dubbed the “Clinton smear machine” – simply because that media did not even mention Johnson without mentioning Stein: the narrative was “Johnson and Stein,” repeated so much that one would think they were running mates. Stein was promoted to take votes from Johnson; ie, to split the low-information protest vote, to prevent it from coalescing besides one party.

    That was true even in the early summer. Notice that Johnson’s poll numbers, while high, never increased from their high of 10-12% in May. Why? Because, for whatever reason, the media went from 3-candidate polling in May to 4-candidate polling in June or July. Normally the 3rd party candidate would benefit from “protest” respondents in the polls; but by including Stein and Johnson as equals, this vote was split. The consequence was that Johnson showed no growth: although he exceeded 15% in states where he campaigned, he never developed the traction to get him any actual news coverage (which in turn increased his lack of traction, and so on). That one decision was enough to keep him off the debate stage, which (as he said from the start) meant it was game over.

    Evan McMullin jumped in the race late, and only qualified for the ballot in 10 states, yet he received over 700,000 votes.

    Evan McMormon had the backing of the hard #NeverTrump network, which (while a lot smaller than it looked like it was going to be pre-New York primary) was at least as large in terms of money and manpower as the Libertarian campaign. Even so, outside the 2 Mormon states, his vote percentage was an asterisk (under 1%). His campaign – the #NeverTrump Republican campaign – failed. In part that was because putting Bill Weld on the ticket split that vote (with the Ford/Rockefeller type of Republicans), but the split worked both ways. The McMormon campaign did not do well.

    Even Darrell Castle, who ran on a shoe string budget, and who only qualified for the ballot in 24 states, got over 203,000 votes, which is a raw vote total record for the Constitution Party in the presidential race.

    Since the days of “failed Republican” Roger McBride, the Libertarian Party has never received less than 300,000 votes. The fact the CP is touting 100,000 votes less than that (in a situation where they had the same #NeverTrump opportunity that both Johnson and McMormon had) as a “record” says all one needs to know to consider that option.

    And that’s only to debunk your spin on the “opportunity”. Debunking your spin on Johnson’s “message” is just as easy, but would take far too much time than I’m willing to spend on this right now.

  146. Thomas L. Knapp

    The big parties already have the “small moves in public policy” niche covered. Nobody needs a third party for that or believes a third party can accomplish it.

    The only way for third parties to win is for people to want something that the major parties aren’t nimble enough to offer before the third party gets elected on it.

    Your idea of how third parties win elections is similar to telling New Off-Brand Shoe, Inc. that the way to beat Nike is to offer a violet knock-off of Nike’s popular purple shoe, at the same price, and wait for the inevitable stampede from Nike to New Off-Brand.

  147. Anthony Dlugos

    “No. You’re wrong. We aren’t going to fill the political office of president. We have other things we are trying to get out of it. Yes, it will fall on a lot of deaf ears, but not all the ears it will fall on will be deaf. Some of the ears it will fall on will not vote for us for president but will vote for us downticket thanks to the efforts of our presidential ticket. Some will become our future donors and candidates themselves. Some will never vote for us but will become involved in the libertarian movement in other ways.”

    This process has NEVER worked in the history of the Libertarian Party, and its obvious why: by nominating someone unqualified for the office, none of the other stuff happens, because you are trying to get something out of an election that voters are totally uninterested in.

    All that stuff you want WOULD have a better chance of happening if you start thinking in terms of what voters are looking for: a qualified candidate and not an education in libertarian radicalism.

  148. paulie

    Andy- “I’m not sure how you were proven right when Gov. Johnson received the most votes of any LP candidate in it’s history by a mile and party membership increased quite nicely. . . ”

    Yes, he did this in a year when the circumstances THE MOST FAVORABLE UNDER WHICH THE LP HAD EVER FIELDED A TICKET FOR PRESIDENT (due in large part to Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump),

    You and the other Johnson-bashers (not to mention the anti-Libertarians) keep saying this (and now you’re SCREAMING it), but it’s not true. It doesn’t even make sense.

    The more detested a candidate is by a voter, the more likely that voter would be to vote against him (or her). Voting against a candidate means voting to stop him; which means voting for the candidate with the best chance to defeat him. It does not mean “throwing your vote away” on someone not seen as likely to win.

    You are both partially correct. When elections get heated and nasty, some segments of voters will become more emphatically opposed to one duopoly candidate or the other and some segment will be turned off by both duopolists. Traditionally, most of those who are sick of both of them will stay home, but they could be open to another option such as an alt party. For illustration, see the McAuliffe-Cuccinelli-Sarvis race in Virginia. It got extremely bitter between McAuliffe and Cuccinelli, and Sarvis was bitterly attacked for supposedly splitting the vote, but still managed a record showing for an LP candidate. Likewise, as Andy pointed out, alt parties and independents of all sorts (and I would add write-ins as well) had record showings because so many people were sick of both Clinton and Trump. On the other hand, you are correct that dynamic can’t be taken for granted. I do believe that the fact that Johnson and Weld had been governors in the past got them coverage and poll inclusion that other LP nominees wouldn’t have had and that even after their poll numbers eventually fell they still ended up with significantly better results than other LP nominees could have had, even though it’s likely the LP would have done better than the 1984-2008 norm regardless of who was nominated.

  149. paulie

    It is not true that Stein received less exposure (from mid-summer to fall) from the part of the MSM (virtually all of it) that Justin Raimondo dubbed the “Clinton smear machine” – simply because that media did not even mention Johnson without mentioning Stein: the narrative was “Johnson and Stein,” repeated so much that one would think they were running mates. Stein was promoted to take votes from Johnson; ie, to split the low-information protest vote, to prevent it from coalescing besides one party.

    That was true even in the early summer. Notice that Johnson’s poll numbers, while high, never increased from their high of 10-12% in May. Why? Because, for whatever reason, the media went from 3-candidate polling in May to 4-candidate polling in June or July. Normally the 3rd party candidate would benefit from “protest” respondents in the polls; but by including Stein and Johnson as equals, this vote was split. The consequence was that Johnson showed no growth: although he exceeded 15% in states where he campaigned, he never developed the traction to get him any actual news coverage (which in turn increased his lack of traction, and so on). That one decision was enough to keep him off the debate stage, which (as he said from the start) meant it was game over.

    That’s also somewhat true. However, I think the campaign blew an opportunity there by not implementing some version of the “zapper plan” of targeted saturation advertising in a few low population states with concentrated and relatively low cost media markets. As McMullin eventually showed, the potential as demonstrated by a few polls of winning even one state was the key to opening up a tremendous amount of media coverage.

  150. paulie

    I’m not interested in being a permanent third party.

    I don’t know whether it will be permanent, but the chances that it won’t be are historically low. You are setting yourself up for a lot of disappointment with that outlook.

  151. Anthony Dlugos

    I don’t know if we can take any lesson from McMormon. That was a highly unusual circumstance in an election where Mormons were viscerally turned off by Cheeto.

  152. paulie

    This process has NEVER worked in the history of the Libertarian Party,

    Except for all the many thousands of times that it has.

    All that stuff you want WOULD have a better chance of happening if you start thinking in terms of what voters are looking for: a qualified candidate and not an education in libertarian radicalism.

    It can’t happen if the top of the ticket doesn’t even understand libertarianism, never mind marketing it and lay down the dope pipe on implementing anything like it.

  153. Tony From Long Island

    Andrew: ” . . . . .In terms of votes received, Johnson ran under more favorable circumstances than Barr (for one thing, Barr had to contend with Ralph Nader, while Johnson did not have to contend with any higher profile minor party or independent candidates). . . . . ”

    In 2008, Ralph Nader received 739, 034 . . . . Barr got around 525,000

    In 2016, Jill Stein received 1, 457,216 votes . . . and received probably 1,000 times the TV coverage that Nader did in 2008.

    I don’t think Ralph Nader was the reason Barr flopped.

  154. Anthony Dlugos

    “Except for all the many thousands of times that it has.”

    The Seen and The Unseen, sir.

    The demopublican parties have been bleeding support for years, and we have failed to pick them up because we’re viewed as an extreme, utopian quasi-religious organization.

    We should have tens of millions of members by now.

    The top of the ticket did understand Libertarianism, just not radical, utopian libertarianism. Sorry.

  155. Andy

    Tony From Long Island said: “As for your question for AD . . . I would vote for the candidate who would get the most exposure for the party and gain the most votes and increase party membership since none of the three would actually win. . . . . . (P.S. that isn’t Kokesh or Sharp).”

    So if Adam Kokesh, Larry Sharpe, or Mitt Romney were the choices for the LP’s presidential nomination in 2020, and if Tony From Long Island were to be a delegate to this national convention, he’d cast his vote for Mitt Romney.

    Folks, this is all you need to know about Tony From Long Island.

    I’d vote for the Jew (Kokesh), or the half black guy (Sharpe), over Mitt Romney.

  156. Andy

    “I’d vote for the Jew (Kokesh), or the half black guy (Sharpe), over Mitt Romney.”

    I made this comment in part as a response to the person above (Deran) who tried to make me out to be some horrible “racist”.

  157. Tony From Long Island

    Andy: ” . . . . .“I’d vote for the Jew (Kokesh), or the half black guy (Sharpe), over Mitt Romney.”

    I made this comment in part as a response to the person above (Deran) who tried to make me out to be some horrible “racist” . . . . ”

    You do realize that it DOES make you look like a racist, right? I always knew that you rarely think before posting, but wow . . . .

  158. Andy

    Tony From Long Island said: “I don’t think Ralph Nader was the reason Barr flopped.”

    I don’t think that Nader was the only reason that the Barr campaign underachieved, but it was certainly a factor, in that Nader was a higher profile “third party” candidate.

    Also, post election, the Barr supporters were bragging about how Barr got around 525,000 raw votes, which was the 2nd highest amount of raw votes that the LP had ever received for President, at that time. I was among those who pointed out that in terms of percent of the vote, Barr actually came in 4th place among LP presidential candidates. Barr actually got a lower percent of the vote than Harry Browne got in 1996, and than what Ron Paul got in 1988. Percent of the vote is a more important criteria than number of votes, as the population has increased.

  159. paulie

    The demopublican parties have been bleeding support for years, and we have failed to pick them up because we’re viewed as an extreme, utopian quasi-religious organization.

    We should have tens of millions of members by now.

    Then why didn’t they get picked up by the Reform Party or Americans Elect or some other such thing that could have sprung up? For that matter, if there was such a strong market niche for a soft-libertarianish party, why has it not come together instead of all the effort of fighting over the LP? Sure, it takes a bunch of work to build a party up from scratch, but you say you have all these would be donors that are only not donating because a few of us are still in the LP. So if you create a new party there won’t be anything to keep them from donating, the ballot access will be a breeze with all that money, and all those millions of people just waiting for such a party will pour in. Why hasn’t it happened yet?

  160. Andy

    Anthony Dlugos said: “B) Otherwise, yes I do believe the LP is gonna win the same way other parties win.”

    If this means throwing libertarian principles away, and becoming as corrupt as the major parties, then you might as well shut the Libertarian Party down, because at that point there’d be no point in the Libertarian Party existing.

  161. paulie

    The top of the ticket did understand Libertarianism, just not radical, utopian libertarianism. Sorry.

    Aside from the question of whether this is true, especially in regards to Weld, we were talking about all hypothetical future tickets, not necessarily the immediate past ticket per se.

  162. Andy

    “Anthony Dlugos
    May 31, 2017 at 10:56
    Thomas,

    Sure, but limiting our analysis to Libertarians makes the sample size too small, and bifurcating the sample into only winners and losers implies that we don’t know what it takes to win elections, when we do know what it takes, and elections are not contested to reward extreme philosophical positions. You get to 50% +1 long before that.”

    Acting like the presidential election is currently a winnable office by anyone other than a Democrat or a Republican is delusional.

    The LP could nominate a ticket of say Rand Paul/Andrew Napolitano, or Rand Paul/Tom Massie, or Rand Paul/John Stossel, or say David Koch/Charles Koch, and this ticket, or any other with which you could imagine, would still NOT be likely to win.

    Remember, close elections go to the US House, and the LP currently has ZERO members in Congress. The fantasy ticket would also have to overcome vote scam (as in vote rigging), and even without that, if the LP had a ticket that stood any kind of more realistic shot at winning the election, you’d best believe that the political establishment would come out in full force to stop them.

    There would have to be some big changes in this country beforehand for a Libertarian Party presidential ticket to have anything resembling a realistic shot at winning.

  163. paulie

    If this means throwing libertarian principles away, and becoming as corrupt as the major parties, then you might as well shut the Libertarian Party down, because at that point there’d be no point in the Libertarian Party existing.

    True, but there’s also no realistic reason to believe the LP would become a major party or anything close to it even if we did. Reform Party post-2000 seems like a far, far more likely outcome in that scenario.

  164. Thomas L. Knapp

    “I’m not interested in being a permanent third party.”

    Then quit insisting on a strategy that guarantees it will never, ever, ever be anything else.

  165. Andy

    “Tony From Long Island
    May 31, 2017 at 12:09
    Andy: ” . . . . .“I’d vote for the Jew (Kokesh), or the half black guy (Sharpe), over Mitt Romney.”

    I made this comment in part as a response to the person above (Deran) who tried to make me out to be some horrible ‘racist’ . . . . ”

    You do realize that it DOES make you look like a racist, right? I always knew that you rarely think before posting, but wow . . . .”

    So it is racist to say that I’d want Adam Kokesh or Larry Sharpe to be elected President, which is the highest political office in this land?

    Wow, you really are an idiot.

  166. Andy

    “Thomas L. Knapp
    May 31, 2017 at 12:23
    ‘I’m not interested in being a permanent third party.’

    Then quit insisting on a strategy that guarantees it will never, ever, ever be anything else.”

    BINGO!

  167. Andy

    “Anthony Dlugos
    May 31, 2017 at 11:41
    I’m not interested in being a permanent third party.”

    You don’t seem that interested in advancing the libertarian philosophy either, and if you are, you obviously are pursuing very poor strategies to achieve this goal.

  168. Tony From Long Island

    Andy: ” . . . . So it is racist to say that I’d want Adam Kokesh or Larry Sharpe to be elected President, which is the highest political office in this land?

    Wow, you really are an idiot. . . . . ”

    When you brag that you would vote for “the jew” or “the half-black guy . . . . ” Hmmm your logic is often bizarre, but this one . . . .wow

  169. Tony From Long Island

    Andrew the Delusional:

    ” . . . .and if Tony From Long Island were to be a delegate to this national convention, he’d cast his vote for Mitt Romney.

    Folks, this is all you need to know about Tony From Long Island. . . . . “

    Giving a hypothetical that will never happen is a waste of time. Mitt Romney will not be running for the LP nomination.

    However, if I were such a delegate, I would (with very few exceptions, i.e. Bob Barr) choose the person with the best opportunity to gather votes, media, party exposure, members, etc.

  170. Anthony Dlugos

    “Acting like the presidential election is currently a winnable office by anyone other than a Democrat or a Republican is delusional.”

    Its difficult to carry on a conversation regarding what it takes to win political office with people who don’t consider winning to be a primary objective.

  171. Thomas L. Knapp

    For a third party in a two-party system, considering winning to be a primary objective is the perfect way of ensuring that it will never happen.

  172. Anthony Dlugos

    “Then quit insisting on a strategy that guarantees it will never, ever, ever be anything else.”

    OK. You win.

    From this point forward, I will only support catastrophically unqualified anarchists with no qualifications, no resume, no previous runs for office, no executive experience whatsoever, and with a predilection towards haughtily educating voters who have no interest in being educated because frankly, its blatantly obvious from looking at who gets elected that that is what voters are looking for.

    Bonus points if he or she is a Troofer, I guess.

  173. Tony From Long Island

    AD: Your argument seems to be like the “jumping from A to Z” argument You and I both seem to dislike about LP members.

    Winning the POTUS election for an LP candidate now or in the near future is not going to happen. However, by nominating candidates who can build name recognition, members, donations, vote, etc . . . a slow buildup can occur. Winning a congressional race or something similar helps the process along.

  174. Thomas L. Knapp

    “Yep. We need to win by nominating people who…can’t win.”

    Well, that’s a view both you and I share.

    I want to nominate people who can’t win now but who can help make it possible for us to eventually win.

    You want to nominate people who can’t win now and who make sure we never win.

    Pardon me for thinking that there’s a problem with your approach if winning is a goal.

  175. paulie

    Yep. We need to win by nominating people who…can’t win.

    If you mean have someone move into 1600 Penn… that’s not in the cards no matter who is nominated, and wouldn’t be a net win towards our real ultimate goal if we do it with someone who doesn’t even move us in that direction. But in reality that person would most likely not win either, only help destroy whatever meaning the term libertarian retains for future efforts.

    There are reasons for running LP presidential candidates, but winning the presidency is not one of them.

  176. paulie

    AD: Your argument seems to be like the “jumping from A to Z” argument You and I both seem to dislike about LP members.

    Winning the POTUS election for an LP candidate now or in the near future is not going to happen. However, by nominating candidates who can build name recognition, members, donations, vote, etc . . . a slow buildup can occur. Winning a congressional race or something similar helps the process along.

    Exactly. Despite the illusion that I am all about going from A to Z, I am not. I’m all for incremental policies that actually move towards more freedom, as opposed to those which would take us in the opposite direction such as the fraudulent “fair” tax. I agree with Tony above. Our candidates can build the party incrementally, help people get elected downticket, and once those candidates are elected downticket they can incrementally help implement policies which move things in our direction. Anthony D is the one putting forward highly unrealistic A to Z scenarios, not me.

  177. Andy

    Winnable races for the LP now are city or county offices (although less so for citywide or countywide offices in high population cities or counties), state legislature, and MAYBE US House (but this may be pushing it).

    High level offices like Governor, US Senate, and especially President are out of reach for the LP, barring major changes taking place first.

  178. paulie

    OK. You win.

    From this point forward, I will only support catastrophically unqualified anarchists with no qualifications, no resume, no previous runs for office, no executive experience whatsoever, and with a predilection towards haughtily educating voters who have no interest in being educated because frankly, its blatantly obvious from looking at who gets elected that that is what voters are looking for.

    Bonus points if he or she is a Troofer, I guess.

    Or you could realize there are a variety of factors to consider in choosing a nominee, and that ideology is in fact one of them but not the only one.

  179. Anthony Dlugos

    “There are reasons for running LP presidential candidates, but winning the presidency is not one of them.”

    Being unserious about who you nominate for President is not going to give the voters any reason at all to dig any deeper into libertarianism or the Libertarian Party. It will do the opposite. It will tell them they don’t need to do any further investigation because the Party is unserious by design.

    Any alternate reasons you have for running a candidate for president starts with running someone qualified for the job, someone that will entice the voters to dig deeper, not entice them to dismiss us.

    Spending a few million bucks on a presidential campaign in order to pull in the 1 of every 5000 voters who are interested in getting educated about libertarianism is…nutty.

  180. Anthony Dlugos

    “High level offices like Governor, US Senate, and especially President are out of reach for the LP, barring major changes taking place first.”

    Dear Voters,

    We of the Libertarian Party are going to start running unqualified loons for president until you’ve demonstrated you are NAP-worthy and ready to accept the Wisdom of Rothbard, then we’ll nominate someone qualified. Just you wait.

  181. paulie

    Its difficult to carry on a conversation regarding what it takes to win political office with people who don’t consider winning to be a primary objective.

    It’s even more difficult to carry on a conversation of winning office or doing whatever else helps set us free with someone who does not consider that goal to be the primary objective, and furthermore harbors bizarre delusions of a non-trivial likelihood of winning major office, especially the presidency, in the near future. If winning major office is your primary and overriding objective, you should work within the parties that actually have a track record of doing so. And if your delusion is that there are billions of dollars and millions of members just waiting to be tapped for a sort of libertarianish third party that’s not anchored down by us crazy anarcho-libertarian extremists, your shortest and easiest path is to create such a party and test your theory, because we are not leaving the LP.

  182. paulie

    Dear Voters,

    We of the Libertarian Party are going to start running unqualified loons for president until you’ve demonstrated you are NAP-worthy and ready to accept the Wisdom of Rothbard, then we’ll nominate someone qualified. Just you wait.

    Dear Voters,

    We of the Libertarian Party are going to start to run only washed up establishment politicians. We have no track record of winning and aren’t going to offer anything significantly different from the establishment parties. I’m sure you will agree that is a compelling reason to vote for us in large numbers. Because two establishment parties peddling the same turds with different food coloring is not enough.

  183. paulie

    “Thomas L. Knapp
    May 31, 2017 at 12:23
    ‘I’m not interested in being a permanent third party.’

    Then quit insisting on a strategy that guarantees it will never, ever, ever be anything else.”

    BINGO!

    Yep.

  184. paulie

    So it is racist to say that I’d want Adam Kokesh or Larry Sharpe to be elected President, which is the highest political office in this land?

    It comes off as racist to point out out of the blue that Kokesh is Jewish and Sharpe is half-black when no one was talking about that.

  185. Thomas L. Knapp

    “Being unserious about who you nominate for President is not going to give the voters any reason at all to dig any deeper into libertarianism or the Libertarian Party. It will do the opposite. It will tell them they don’t need to do any further investigation because the Party is unserious by design.”

    EXACTLY.

    Nominating non-libertarians who came to us because their own parties put them out to pasture (Barr wasn’t able to beat a less-well-known Republican in a primary for re-election when he got redistricted; Johnson wasn’t able to get above low single digits in his own party’s primary) is the very definition of unserious. It’s basically jumping up and down in the back of the room waving our arms and screaming “Look at us! Look at us! If you do that, but not too closely, and while smoking crack, you just might mistake us for those other guys’ third string! And who wouldn’t vote for that?!?”

    We need serious candidates. That starts with them actually being being libertarians. It doesn’t end with that, but if it it doesn’t start with that, we’re just masturbating in public.

  186. Anthony Dlugos

    “…doing whatever else helps set us free with someone who does not consider that goal to be the primary objective..”

    Yea, because I don’t even know what that means, and I’m a Libertarian. Voters will even have less of an idea.

    The only things I know for sure is that anyone who has that as a primary objective is gonna have some pretty wackadoodle ideas for the sort of people that should run for what are just public offices and not Master Wizard of the Universe.

  187. Anthony Dlugos

    The only people I’ve come across that called Johnson and Weld “washed up” were puritanical libertarians. Regular voters I came across were pretty impressed a (presently) third party managed to land two governors for their ticket. Typically, its these same puritans who deride a resume and previous experience as a “shiny badge” or some other cockamamie term, totally oblivious to what history tells us about the type of people voters do vote for, or at least listen to.

    Of course, such folk are not really interested in at least taking into account what the voters want. Although that would seem like common sense, as paulie indicates in some of his posts above, we’ll decide what should be important to the voters, dammit.

    I found that situation comical because of what said puritanical libertarians WOULD have presented to said voters as an example of the best we have to offer for the most powerful office in on the planet.

  188. paulie

    I don’t know if we can take any lesson from McMormon. That was a highly unusual circumstance in an election where Mormons were viscerally turned off by Cheeto.

    I do think we can, and here it is.

    If you look at past LP races, Ron Paul primary results, and Perot and Nader numbers state by state, there is a greater opportunity for the LP in upper New England and interior West states vis a vis other regions. Those states also have some other advantages such as low populations and low cost concentrated media markets that make them relatively cost-effective to campaign in. Once we start threatening to win even one or two of those states, or peel off an electoral vote in states where that can be done such as Maine, we become a factor in the election in ways that are a lot harder to ignore.

    Supposing that Johnson was at 11 or 12 percent nationally, he must have been a few points higher in some of those states. I seem to recall a couple of state polls in the low 20s at one point. In a 3 way race 33% plus one is a win, and since there were additional candidates in most states it’s theoretically possible to win a state with even less than 33%. It would not have taken that much more work to boost one or a small handful of low population, low cost media market states into a range where we could be polling in the high 20s, low 30s – ie where winning electoral votes becomes a non-trivial possibility. By putting ads on the air during the network news shows, those shows would have had incentive to cover the LP candidates. That would have boosted the poll numbers into the range where more voters start to look at it as something more than a wasted vote or protest vote in those states, where winning electoral votes seems plausible.

    And given that the national election was potentially close in electoral votes all the way to the end, the serious possibility of winning even a tiny handful of electoral votes would have boosted national coverage. Instead of declining to an average of 7% by September, that 11-12% could have been boosted to just above 15% and debate inclusion. That’s where another shortcoming of the campaign – lack of candidate prep and stage coaching – would have also made a big difference, had we gotten to that stage.

    From there, who knows what could have been possible. I still don’t think we would have won, but it’s far less implausible to think it could have at least been possible.

  189. paulie

    We need serious candidates. That starts with them actually being being libertarians. It doesn’t end with that, but if it it doesn’t start with that, we’re just masturbating in public.

    Exactly.

  190. Anthony Dlugos

    Wrong. The voters decide what a serious candidate is, not us. And it doesn’t start with being a libertarian.

  191. paulie

    Yea, because I don’t even know what that means, and I’m a Libertarian.

    That could be a big part of the problem right there. I think we just found the source of the problem here.

    Voters will even have less of an idea.

    Someone should help them with that. Preferably someone who has some idea of what it means themselves, and knows how to explain it well.

  192. Anthony Dlugos

    “That could be a big part of the problem right there. I think we just found the source of the problem here.”

    We did. Suggesting our goal is a “world set free.” is utopian gobbledygook.

    Sheesh, its just the presidency. It real irony for a radical to imbibe a trifling office with such omnipotent power.

  193. paulie

    Wrong. The voters decide what a serious candidate is, not us. And it doesn’t start with being a libertarian.

    First you have to understand what your objectives are. If your objectives are “winning the presidency” (and not much else) you are in the wrong party. Yes, voters will decide on who serious candidates are, but in that process some of them will discover our ideas, some of them will discover a name for what they already believe, some of them will decide our downticket candidates are serious, some of them will become our donors and future candidates themselves. So, we also have to decide who serious candidates for our nomination are; “will offer the same turds as establishment politicians, but painted gold instead of red or blue, and still lose” candidates should not be serious candidates for the nomination, and won’t be serious candidates for the presidency if they get the nomination.

  194. Andy

    “Anthony Dlugos
    May 31, 2017 at 13:15
    ‘There are reasons for running LP presidential candidates, but winning the presidency is not one of them.’

    Being unserious about who you nominate for President is not going to give the voters any reason at all to dig any deeper into libertarianism or the Libertarian Party. It will do the opposite. It will tell them they don’t need to do any further investigation because the Party is unserious by design.”

    I got involved in the Libertarian Party and movement in 1996 because of the Harry Browne for President campaign. Harry Browne never held elected office, and he did not have a college degree (he dropped out of college after two weeks).

    I know that there are lots of other Libertarians and small “l” libertarians that got involved because of Harry Browne, or others who lacked fancy credentials.

  195. Anthony Dlugos

    Andy, you’re not even close to being a normal voter. no offense intended.

  196. Tony From Long Island

    TK, btw – I have a bunch of new songs up on Soundcloud . . . . SuperShazbot!

  197. Tony From Long Island

    Andy, you are not even close to being a normal citizen . . . offense intended. I try not to offend people . . . except troofers . . .

  198. paulie

    We did. Suggesting our goal is a “world set free.” is utopian gobbledygook.

    Sheesh, its just the presidency. It real irony for a radical to imbibe a trifling office with such omnipotent power.

    Of course not. Unlike you, I’m not delusional. The original topic of this post, which everyone seems to have forgotten,is recruiting candidates for 2018, when the presidency is not even up. Selling the vision of a world set free includes electing candidates up and down the ballot, not just the or even primarily the presidency. It includes getting people organized and active in the party and the movement in many different ways and creating the pressure for policy change in a lot of different ways. The job of the presidential ticket is to get people to discover the ideas, get those who already share them to learn what they are called and that there is a party pushing for them, to get people active in that party and in the larger libertarian movement, to teach people arguments for our ideas, to help boost and elect and recruit local LP candidates — it is most assuredly not electing a LP POTUS in a vacuum and freeing the world by executive order.

    The fact that you would even bring up such absurd scenarios show how little you understand the actual job of the LP presidential ticket or of alt parties in the US political system as a whole.

    The socialist, progressive, populist and prohibition parties of roughly a century ago did not elect a president…but they sure did help change government policy. And along the way they did elect some people to other offices.

  199. Andy

    Paul said: “paulie
    May 31, 2017 at 13:39
    ‘So it is racist to say that I’d want Adam Kokesh or Larry Sharpe to be elected President, which is the highest political office in this land?’

    It comes off as racist to point out out of the blue that Kokesh is Jewish and Sharpe is half-black when no one was talking about that.”

    That comment did not come out of the blue. It was made in reference to a comment that was made higher up in this thread (by Deran).

    Saying that I’d vote for and support Kokesh, or Sharpe, is a compliment.

  200. Andy

    “Anthony Dlugos
    May 31, 2017 at 14:09
    Andy, you’re not even close to being a normal voter. no offense intended.”

    “Tony From Long Island
    May 31, 2017 at 14:11
    Andy, you are not even close to being a normal citizen . . . offense intended. I try not to offend people . . . except troofers . . .”

    Considering that “normal” voters vote for the Republican and Democratic party office holders who are screwing up this country, and who have created all of the problems we have with government, not being a “normal” voter or citizen is a good thing.

  201. paulie

    And that’s only to debunk your spin on the “opportunity”.

    You missed the forest for the trees. Stein, McMullin and Castle (vis a vis past CP nominees, not compared to LP) are just data points. There are others. The write-in vote set new records. I haven’t checked, but I will guess the NOTA vote in Nevada was higher than usual. Explicitly socialist parties set recent records. Faithless electors were popping up in various states. Larger point being, there was and is in fact heightened dissatisfaction all around with the crappy offerings of the duopoly. Yes, some of that translated into doubling down on “you’re stealing out voerts” but a lot of it translated into support for “anyone else.” Nevertheless, that only accounts for part of Johnson more than tripling his previous vote total after more than doubling the 1984-2008 norm the previous time. It’s true that his establishment credential accounted for another part of that. The real question is whether the trade-off was worthwhile or not.

  202. paulie

    for one thing, Barr had to contend with Ralph Nader, while Johnson did not have to contend with any higher profile minor party or independent candidates

    Bergland did not have to contend with a higher profile alt party candidate. Ed Clark did. I don’t think that matters as much as you seem to think.

  203. Thomas L. Knapp

    Barr also had to contend with another former member of the US House of Representatives from his state, who had served more terms in Congress than he had.

  204. Tony From Long Island

    Andy . . . I guess 99% of the country is “abnormal” and you, my friend, are PERFECT! (perfectly what . . . that’s the question)

  205. paulie

    Barr also had to contend with another former member of the US House of Representatives from his state, who had served more terms in Congress than he had.

    Her candidacy suffered somewhat from the novel concept that seeking out establishment media coverage was only helping to promote the establishment media, their parent corporations and the establishment in general.

  206. Andy

    “paulie
    May 31, 2017 at 15:06
    ‘for one thing, Barr had to contend with Ralph Nader, while Johnson did not have to contend with any higher profile minor party or independent candidates’
    Bergland did not have to contend with a higher profile alt party candidate. Ed Clark did. I don’t think that matters as much as you seem to think.”

    Yes, and Bergland also jumped in the race at the last minute, during a time when the Libertarian Party was in a weakened position, especially ballot access wise. Also, the Libertarian Party had not been around as long back then, not as many people knew what the word libertarian meant as compared to when Johnson ran (Johnson benefited greatly from the Ron Paul campaigns in the Republican primaries in 2008 and 2012 boosting public recognition of the word libertarian), and there was no internet back then.

    Ed Clark had to contend with a higher profile alternative presidential candidate in John Anderson, but Clark also qualified for the ballot in all 50 states plus DC, and he had a wealthy VP running mate in David Koch, who pumped several million dollars into the race out of his own pocket.

    “Thomas L. Knapp
    May 31, 2017 at 15:11
    Barr also had to contend with another former member of the US House of Representatives from his state, who had served more terms in Congress than he had.”

    Yes, but Cynthia McKinney jumped into the race late, as did Barr, but McKinney came in even later than Barr due to the Green Party having their convention in July, while the LP’s convention was in May, and the Green Party was in worse shape than the LP, both financially, and ballot access wise.

    Barr’s greater competition for attention and votes was Ralph Nader.

  207. paulie

    Yes, and Bergland also jumped in the race at the last minute,

    He was nominate in the fall of 1983, further from the November election than Barr announced his interest in running at all, further than Johnson switched from Republican to LP in 2011, further than the official declaration of Johnson II, etc. True, he did not have a pre-nomination campaign but his post-nomination campaign was longer than any candidate since at least Marrou.

  208. Andy

    “Tony From Long Island
    May 31, 2017 at 15:24
    ‘Andy . . . I guess 99% of the country is ‘abnormal’ and you, my friend, are PERFECT! (perfectly what . . . that’s the question)”

    It is the so called “normal” people who voted for the asshole politicians that have created most of the problems that we face today, so in this case, not being one of the “normal” people who is responsible for this mess is a good thing.

  209. Andy

    “paulie
    May 31, 2017 at 15:38
    ‘Yes, and Bergland also jumped in the race at the last minute,’
    He was nominate in the fall of 1983, further from the November election than Barr announced his interest in running at all, further than Johnson switched from Republican to LP in 2011, further than the official declaration of Johnson II, etc. True, he did not have a pre-nomination campaign but his post-nomination campaign was longer than any candidate since at least Marrou.”

    Yeah, I know that the party was having odd year conventions back then. My point was that Bergland showed up at the national convention without any campaign staff, money, or anything. He did not even do any campaigning prior to the nominating convention.

    The bigger issues were that Bergland ran during a time when the LP was in bad shape, both financially, and ballot access wise, less people knew what a libertarian was back then, and that there was no internet (which is a cheap way to communicate with a lot of people).

  210. Andy

    “Anthony Dlugos
    May 31, 2017 at 10:24
    Why would the moderates in the party leave? We won the last three nominations. We’re in the majority.”

    I would not assume that the so called “moderates” who were responsible for the nominations of the last three presidential tickets are necessarily a majority in the Libertarian Party (they damn sure are not the majority in the greater libertarian movement). They were the majority of the people who showed up at the last three presidential nominating conventions, but who shows up as a convention delegate is not the same thing as who makes up the membership of the entire party.

    “I don’t want anyone to leave, but if folks like Andy want to push the issue, then I have one thing to say, ‘don’t let the door hit your ass on the way out.'”

    The Libertarian Party would most definitely be worse off without me, and without people like me.

    “I love this purist argument that Johnson-Weld failed to meet expectations in the election, when the guy they supported (presumably Perry), got 6% of the delegates in a room full of Libertarians.”

    I did vote for Darryl Perry at the convention, but I think that John McAfee, Austin Petersen, or the late Dr. Marc Allan Feldman would have been better candidates than Gary Johnson. I voted for Will Coley on the first ballot for VP, and for Larry Sharpe on the second ballot for VP, and I think that either of them, or Judd Weiss, or Derrick Grayson (even though I did not care for his last minute party hopping), would have been better than Bill Weld.

    My reasons for voting for Perry was not just his ideology. I also voted for him because of his long term commitment to the Libertarian Party, and to the cause of liberty. I also think that he does a good job of communicating a libertarian message (I know that some people here don’t give him credit for this, but I’ve listened to his radio shows on and off for years, and I think that he’s a better communicator than some are giving him credit for being).

    Was Perry my ideal candidate? No, but neither was anyone else at the convention. There’s probably no such thing as a perfect candidate, but we’d all prefer a candidate who comes as close to our ideal as possible.

    I also dispute your assertion that there was a room full of libertarians at the national convention in Orlando. Yes, there was a room full of people who joined the Libertarian Party, but joining the Libertarian Party does not necessarily make one a libertarian. I suspect that a lot of the Johnson/Weld delegates were NOT libertarians. I’m not saying that everyone at the convention who voted for Johnson and/or Weld is not really a libertarian, but I suspect that at least some of the Johnson/Weld delegates only joined the party to vote for Johnson/Weld, and that these people did not really care about the Libertarian Party, or the libertarian philosophy. There was something “off” about some of the Johnson/Weld delegates, and I’m not the only one at the convention that noticed this, as I have heard similar comments made by others who attended the convention.

  211. Andy

    Question for Anthony Dlugos: How did you get involved with the Libertarian Party? Did you come in after being exposed to a candidate, and if so, who was it? Bob Barr?

  212. paulie

    My reasons for voting for Perry was not just his ideology. I also voted for him because of his long term commitment to the Libertarian Party, and to the cause of liberty. I also think that he does a good job of communicating a libertarian message (I know that some people here don’t give him credit for this, but I’ve listened to his radio shows on and off for years, and I think that he’s a better communicator than some are giving him credit for being).

    Much of the modern definition of communication as far as running for office is visual, as in appearance on TV and stage presence, in particular. Darryl is a very good writer and pretty good on radio (unless too strenuously challenged) but I think he’d be the first to tell you that he does not do as well on TV.

  213. Thomas L. Knapp

    I agree. In terms of television appearance and poise, Darryl was only maybe an order of magnitude or two more attractive and professional than Johnson or Weld. He should work on that.

  214. Andy

    “paulie
    May 31, 2017 at 18:50
    ‘My reasons for voting for Perry was not just his ideology. I also voted for him because of his long term commitment to the Libertarian Party, and to the cause of liberty. I also think that he does a good job of communicating a libertarian message (I know that some people here don’t give him credit for this, but I’ve listened to his radio shows on and off for years, and I think that he’s a better communicator than some are giving him credit for being).’

    Much of the modern definition of communication as far as running for office is visual, as in appearance on TV and stage presence, in particular. Darryl is a very good writer and pretty good on radio (unless too strenuously challenged) but I think he’d be the first to tell you that he does not do as well on TV.”

    Darryl’s public speaking is good. Watch any videos of him giving a speech. Even his critics that I encountered at the convention in Orlando conceded that he’s a good public speaker. Their criticisms of him were more along the lines of them not liking the way he was dressed, or his hair style, both of which are things that are changeable.

    I’m not saying that he was the ideal candidate, but there were things wrong with all of the candidates for the presidential nomination. Out of the list of available choices, I thought that there were the least things wrong with Perry.

    McAfee, Petersen, and the late Dr. Feldman would have also been better candidates that Gary Johnson.

  215. paulie

    I agree. In terms of television appearance and poise, Darryl was only maybe an order of magnitude or two more attractive and professional than Johnson or Weld. He should work on that.

    Well, that’s obviously subjective. As I said before I think Johnson could and should have used some professional coaching on that. And I should point out that while I am not a candidate, and have zero interest in ever being a candidate for any government office, that if I were, I’d be in no position whatsoever to criticize anyone else on this particular score. But since I am only on the sidelines, I can heckle all I want 🙂

  216. Anthony Dlugos

    Andy,

    The straw that broke the camel’s back for me was Charles Murray’s Losing Ground, which is about American social policy, 1950-1980, specifically the ineffective and counterproductive welfare policy which only exacerbates the problems it purports to solve. I was able to understand that counterproductive effect was pretty much standard when it came to government action, whether it was foreign or domestic policy.

    But I was already moving from right wing conservative Republicanism to libertarianism anyway. That was about 1994. Browne in 1996 was my first LP vote.

  217. Anthony Dlugos

    “I also voted for him [Perry] because of his long term commitment to the Libertarian Party.”

    Pardon me, but didn’t he lose the nomination fair and square and then decide to run as a write-in candidate for President in N.H.

    That’s not a long term commitment, its self-aggrandizement.

  218. Anthony Dlugos

    “Yes, there was a room full of people who joined the Libertarian Party, but joining the Libertarian Party does not necessarily make one a libertarian.”

    More witch hunt behavior by Andy.

  219. paulie

    I think we can all agree that we had several choices for the nomination which were less than ideal in various respects. Why is the presidential nomination dominating this discussion again? Can anyone remind me? The topic was candidates for 2018. The presidency isn’t up in 2018. Why is there so little interest here in downticket races, some of which may in fact be winnable? Everyone wants to keep rehashing the presidential campaign for the ten millionth time. Aren’t any of you tired of repeating your thoughts on that over and over and over to the same people making the same back and forth responses yet?

  220. Andy

    “Anthony Dlugos
    May 31, 2017 at 19:20
    Andy,

    The straw that broke the camel’s back for me was Charles Murray’s Losing Ground, which is about American social policy, 1950-1980, specifically the ineffective and counterproductive welfare policy which only exacerbates the problems it purports to solve. I was able to understand that counterproductive effect was pretty much standard when it came to government action, whether it was foreign or domestic policy.

    But I was already moving from right wing conservative Republicanism to libertarianism anyway. That was about 1994. Browne in 1996 was my first LP vote.”

    Anthony, I’m surprised that you voted for Harry Browne, given that he ran on a pretty radical libertarian platform, and given that he’d never held office before, and had no college degree. He was personally on what is considered to be on the wealthy side, but he was not a mega millionaire or a billionaire, and he never ran a big company. He was somewhat known as an investment adviser and an author, but he was far from being a celebrity.

    So given that Harry Browne did not have any fancy credentials, why did you vote for him?

    Did you vote for Michael Badnarik in 2004? Badnarik never held elected office, and he had no college degree. He had a successful career at one point as a computer programmer, but he was no longer working in that field by the time he was running for President, and he had lost a lot of his money because of his activism and battles with the government. Badnarik got into protesting the drivers license, and he went to jail for driving without a license several times (I think that he was correct in his legal arguments, but this is another issue).

  221. Andy

    “Anthony Dlugos
    May 31, 2017 at 19:22
    ‘I also voted for him [Perry] because of his long term commitment to the Libertarian Party.’

    Pardon me, but didn’t he lose the nomination fair and square and then decide to run as a write-in candidate for President in N.H.

    That’s not a long term commitment, its self-aggrandizement.”

    Perry declared himself as a write in candidate for President AFTER Bill Weld ATTACKED his state affiliate, the LP of New Hampshire, twice. The first attack came in the form of Bill Weld donating money to the mainstream Republican candidate for Governor, Chris Sununu, who was running against a Libertarian Party candidate for Governor, in a race where the outcome determined whether or not the LP of NH remained ballot qualified for the next two years (the only way for a party to retain ballot access in New Hampshire is for that party’s candidate for Governor to meet a vote test). The second attack came when Bill Weld spoke at an event at the state capitol in New Hampshire, and Weld and his campaign staff actually PREVENTED Libertarians from speaking at this event, and they instead allowed Republicans to speak, even though the event had been organized by Libertarians.

    So when Perry dropped back in the presidential race as a write in candidate, he was NOT doing it for self aggrandizement, he did it in RETALIATION to the LP of NH being ATTACKED by Bill Weld.

  222. Andy

    “paulie
    May 31, 2017 at 19:27
    I think we can all agree that we had several choices for the nomination which were less than ideal in various respects. Why is the presidential nomination dominating this discussion again? Can anyone remind me? The topic was candidates for 2018. The presidency isn’t up in 2018. Why is there so little interest here in downticket races, some of which may in fact be winnable? ”

    I agree that there ought to be more of a focus put on Libertarians running in down-ticket races, particularly ones that are winnable, especially the offices of Sheriff in a low population county, Mayor and city council in small towns/cities, county commission/board seats in low population counties, and seats in state legislatures.

    Having said this, the issue of the presidential nomination is still relevant, because analyzing what happened at presidential nominating conventions, and thereafter, should give us some guidance on what to do, and what not to do, in regard to other nominations for other offices.

  223. paulie

    I did not say it’s irrelevant. It’s just too much of an obsession for some here in a way that eclipses other subjects. This thread is a good case in point.

  224. George Dance

    AD – “That’s not a long term commitment, its self-aggrandizement.”

    I don’t know if I’d call it that. According to Richard Winger, he received 8 votes.

    I know Mr. Phillies does list “2008 Libertarian candidate for President” on his resume, but at least he got 500 (and he was nominated by a state party). But 8 votes as a write-in? Hardly an ego boost, or something to brag about.

  225. George Dance

    Does the U.S. have CD associations? We do in Canada (we call them ‘electoral district’ associations), and we try to encourage people to join together, have regular meetups, and find and support their own candidates. It’s not been that successful, but it does look like to me like the right way to go.

  226. paulie

    Some states have suborganizations based on congressional districts; most have them by county; some do both.

  227. George Dance

    Paulie – Some states have suborganizations based on congressional districts; most have them by county; some do both.

    Well, those are where the action (of finding and supporting local candidates) should be taking place. These suborgs should be raising their own funds, and recruiting and supporting their own candidates.

    I know that’s not easy; my wife and I organized a constituency association in the 1980’s, and while we had some successes (we ran full slates in the federal and provincial districts), we never had that much money.

    IME, every group like that needs at least one organizer; someone willing to invest the work to keep the thing running, and make it successful. The problem with that is that (1) in most places, there isn’t one; (2) where there is one, he or she gravitates to the higher organization, which brings you right back to (1).

  228. Andy

    “George Dance
    May 31, 2017 at 23:12
    AD – ‘That’s not a long term commitment, its self-aggrandizement.’

    I don’t know if I’d call it that. According to Richard Winger, he received 8 votes.

    I know Mr. Phillies does list ‘2008 Libertarian candidate for President’ on his resume, but at least he got 500 (and he was nominated by a state party). But 8 votes as a write-in? Hardly an ego boost, or something to brag about.”

    The truth of the matter is that nobody knows how many write in votes that Darryl Perry received for President, because a lot of states do not report write in totals, or they only report them if the candidate, or the supporters of the candidate, jump through some hoops to have that candidate’s write in votes tallied.

    Perry jumped in the race as a write in candidate at a point where it was too late to jump through the hoops to have his write in votes totaled, and like I said above, some states just do not consistently count them. He likely did not receive that many write in votes, but whatever he did receive, it was probably more than 8 votes.

    I had considered writing in Darryl Perry myself, but I did not, because the state where I voted is one of the states that does not consistently tally write in votes, and because Darrell Castle was on my ballot, and since Castle is more libertarian than Gary Johnson and Bill Weld, and anybody else who has been on the LP’s presidential ticket since Michael Badnarik, I decided to vote for Castle. I figured that my vote was basically a protest vote anyway, and that since Castle was actually on my ballot, and his vote total was going to be tallied, that my protest vote would be “louder” by voting for Castle than it would be by voting for somebody whose votes weren’t even going to be tallied.

    There were three Libertarian Party candidates in down ticket races on my ballot for whom I did cast votes. I wrote in None Of The Above for every race where the only choices were Democrat or Republican.

  229. Thomas L. Knapp

    Yes, we’re supposed to be talking about 2018 Senate, House, gubernatorial, state legislative, etc. races here. But the 2016 presidential race is pertinent to that. We don’t yet know how for long the slight electoral boost on one hand, and the severe credibility damage on the other, from 2016 will reverberate through our campaigns and election results.

  230. paulie

    I’ll make a modest cash bet against any significant decline in typical LP results. I’m going to guess there won’t be any kind of orders of magnitude increase either. My best guess is a relatively modest increase from immediate past elections, but a modest decrease would not be completely shocking.

  231. paulie

    One thing that I think will make a difference in that, far more than presidential campaigns, is how many candidates we recruit. Having a lot of LP candidates on a ballot, even when many of them are not active, makes us look like a bigger team to voters, which tends to boost all our candidates’ results up and down the ballot.

  232. Nathan Larson

    I suspect one reason why there aren’t more Libertarian candidates is that when you run for office, you put a big target on your back. Suddenly, you open yourself up for criticism that you wouldn’t have encountered if you had just worked quietly behind the scenes.

    When you run for office, all the opinions you’ve put forth about the best strategy and tactics get put to the test. If you run and get 1% of the vote, how are you going to criticize the next Libertarian who gets 1% of the vote, and say that if he had followed your advice about how to run an effective campaign, he would’ve done better?

    I think a commentator or critic on Libertarian campaigns who hasn’t run for office himself lacks street cred. Till you’ve done it yourself, you haven’t seen what it’s like from that perspective. You’re only seeing it from the outside; you haven’t seen it from the inside.

    Pretty much everyone who has a job and a life can use the excuse that they’re too busy to run, but I consider it somewhat of a cop-out because the majority of the campaign is the sitzkrieg between ballot access petitioning and Labor Day. You probably have time to knock on every door and attend campaign events, if you and your family are willing to make a few sacrifices for just one year.

    People say sometimes, “If you don’t vote, you can’t complain.” Why wouldn’t the same principle apply to running for office? Until you’ve run for office, you haven’t exercised all of your civic rights.

  233. paulie

    I don’t think it’s that complicated. When we make a concerted effort to ask people to run, people step forward and run. All too often that does not happen. There are a lot of cases where people get discouraged from running by party officers and members for various reasons as well.

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