Andy Jacobs interviews Joshua Smith, candidate for Libertarian Party National Chairman, 4/29/18

26 thoughts on “Andy Jacobs interviews Joshua Smith, candidate for Libertarian Party National Chairman, 4/29/18

  1. Andy

    Even though Adam Kokesh did get heavily involved in the Ron Paul r3VOLution, I have never heard of anyone accusing him of being too conservative.

  2. Carol Moore/Secession.net

    I didn’t listen to this one but I did listen to the CA debate. https://youtu.be/Z1WFdxTOQG0

    Nick wins. He knows what he’s talking about and has experience growing the party. Having seen it slip into chaos in the past, after better management, I know experience and proven success counts.

    Alicia Dearn has the kind of life experience that matters and hopefully she can get more for 2020. Joshua Smith is light on heavy responsibility; but he can keep gathering it for the future.

    Much as I’d rather see a new person just because 3 terms is unusual, I know the pitfalls of getting insufficiently experienced people in there.

  3. Andy

    The LP has not grown. The number of dues paying members and the number of elected Libertarians are both way down from what they were years ago. Last year something like 5,500 people did not renew their dues.

  4. Carol Moore/Secession.net

    OOOPS. Missed the unnerving part of what Joshua said at the end of the video I listed to. Link again: https://youtu.be/Z1WFdxTOQG0

    It sounded a bit menacing, in fact, given the fact that his avowed hero, Larry Sharp, tried to get elected Vice Chair Arvin Vohra’s kicked off the LNC so soon after his inartful and angry statements on the military. This of course turned into a macho flash battle between radicals and “moderates?” that went on for another year! (More about the Bylaws Committee proposal by one of Smith’s “running mates” to have state chairs kick LNC members off the LNC in the next post.)

    Smith perhaps says more on that in the featured video above? Too long, don’t have time to listen… Anyone else listen?

    Smith on what are goals for 2020 at 44 minutes:

    Quote: “one of the most important things for me as a party is to NOT see activists like Larry Sharpe, Patrick McKnight leave the LNC for what they see as fundamental problems that they can’t get past. As leadership in the party sometimes you have to say no more. And I believe that doing that at some point in the last two years may have kept those people from leaving the party and taking their resources and going home. So I think if we can keep people involved, keep people from feeling like they are part of the process, we can increase our numbers over the next two years… and two years from now I’ll feel I’ve accomplished a lot. End quote

    Of course, this was rather amusing hearing him say defacto “purge noisy radicals”. He was sitting next to Jim Turney who was purged because he was too fair too all sides, like Sarwark is. And because he ran up big phone bills trying to stop the infighting caused by Rothbard/Paul “red state values” faction trying to purge radicals who smoke pot, have homosexual relations or abortions, love Gandhi, talk to Green hippies, etc. They wanted to take over the party and drive out the radicals.

    Deja vu all over again??

    The main difference is back then we didn’t have the internet to broadcast and share every stupid thing someone said and build up hysteria to increase the radical/moderate divide. But there was enough communications through various newsletters – and something called “phone calls” – to energize people in various directions.

    When 1989 convention time came there were three chair candidates. The Rothbard/Paul candidate, the moderate libertarian, and the radical libertarian.

    I pledged my vote to the radical but at the last minute PANICKED that the anti-abortionists (as I saw them) would win. So I switched my vote to the moderate. It only meant the moderate won on the first ballot, instead of the second. Somehow it got around how that came about and Rothbard was really pissed that that danged “Gandhian” Moore may have stolen his chance to make the LP “red state”.

    It’s great to be an oldster telling old war stories.

  5. Carol Moore/Secession.net

    FYI, there is an unofficial LP bylaws discussion group. There is not as yet a public email list so members can see who is proposing what and discussions thereof. https://www.facebook.com/groups/BylawsDiscussion/

    LP Bylaws Committee member Ms. Harlos has submitted a second draft proposal “CREATE METHOD FOR MEMBER RECALL OF LNC MEMBERS (SECOND VERSION)” For those who may not choose to join another group to get the document, I have made it easily available here. (Whatever happened to individuals putting files on FB??) http://carolmoore.net/RECALL_OF_LNC2.docx

    The proposal is that 2/3 of state chairs can recall an LNC member “for cause”. As LNC email list discussions of the last few months show, “cause” tends to be a very subjective decision.

    Basically this proposal would set up a dangerous structure to deal with a problem not likely to happen again, i.e., a REALLY obnoxiously “extremism in defense of liberty” LNC member.

    My problem is that it makes it easy for anyone with lots of state chair friends/allies/minions to manipulate and threaten even delegate-elected officers and at-large members who don’t follow their agenda.

    Libertarians have always worried about wealthy GOP members taking over the party, making it GOP light or just quickly sending it into disrepute and bankruptcy. This could be done simply by infiltrating enough state parties and/or buying off of enough state chairs with blackmail, jobs, money, etc. Hopefully this proposal will never even make it to the floor.

  6. George Phillies

    There was a crash in LP membership starting in 1999 and continuing until recently years. Membership the last few months has increased. It is well above what it was a couple-three years ago.

  7. Andy

    The LP reached its peak size in dues paying members in 2000-2001. Membership started going down in 2001, and it never recovered.

    I do not think that the increases this year make up for the loses last year (at least not yet). I think that some of the increases this year are do to the efforts of Adam Kokesh for President and Michael Heise and the Mises Caucus.

    The LP is not going to get anywhere as long as dues paying membership keeps hovering around 12,000-20,000 range, which is where it has been for the past several years.

  8. Anon-Tipper

    ” I think that some of the increases this year are do to the efforts of Adam Kokesh for President and Michael Heise and the Mises Caucus.”

    I hope this isn’t true, we’ll never shake paleo-nonsense.

  9. Anthony Dlugos

    ” I think that some of the increases this year are do to the efforts of Adam Kokesh for President and Michael Heise and the Mises Caucus.”

    Its not even close to true.

  10. Anthony Dlugos

    Besides, even if it were true, what could possibly be the upper bound for the number of people who could be brought into the party via a Mises Caucus or a presidential candidate who is a felon that wants to abolish the federal government on Day One? Ten thousand? Whatever it is, its not even close to the kinds of numbers we need to affect change in this country.

    The most illuminating graph in that collection is the one that compares Libertarian voters with ideological libertarians in the US. That’s a 42-year record of our failures.

  11. Andy

    There was membership growth in 2016, as the party went from like 14,000-15,000 dues paying members, to around 20,000 dues paying members, but something like 5,500 people dropped off in 2017. Also, I think that some of those people who joined in 2016 were not really very dedicated to the Libertarian Party and to libertarian principles.

  12. Andy

    The Ron Paul r3VOLution was the biggest thing to happen in the liberty movement. If the Mises Caucus can recapture even some of that spirit into the LP, it could make the party bigger and more successful than it has ever been.

    Anthony keeps bringing up that Adam Kokesh has been arrested and has felonies on his record, but he fails to mention that these were all victimless crimes, and most, or all, had to do with his political activism. This is not very libertarian of you, Anthony. Lots of people are sympathetic to the fact that the government frequently arrests people for things that should not be crimes, or otherwise falsely arrests people. None of this should be held against Kokesh.

  13. Andy

    It is quite ironic that Ron Paul, who some perceive as being “too conservative,” has actually done more to bring people from the left to liberty, than most, maybe any, left libertarian has done.

  14. Anthony Dlugos

    “Lots of people are sympathetic to the fact that the government frequently arrests people for things that should not be crimes, or otherwise falsely arrests people. None of this should be held against Kokesh.”

    I am quite sympathetic to people who are arrested for victimless crimes. Relative to his standing as a civilian, I would not hold that against him.

    Once he declares himself a candidate, he ceases to be a civilian and is now fair game for anything that might make him unelectable to the typical voter.

    A felony almost certainly does.

    A felony in conjunction with a catastrophically unqualified candidate DEFINITELY does.

    A felony in conjunction with a catastrophically unqualified candidate who wants to “abolish the federal government on Day One” makes such a person a laughingstock.

  15. Anon-Tipper

    “Besides, even if it were true, what could possibly be the upper bound for the number of people who could be brought into the party via a Mises Caucus or a presidential candidate who is a felon that wants to abolish the federal government on Day One? Ten thousand? Whatever it is, its not even close to the kinds of numbers we need to affect change in this country.”

    I think most libertarians out there that don’t follow party drama are not even aware of the Mises Caucus.

  16. Andy

    Anthony Dlugos said: “Once he declares himself a candidate, he ceases to be a civilian and is now fair game for anything that might make him unelectable to the typical voter.”

    I recall that George W. Bush got arrested for drunk driving, and he got elected Governor or Texas and President of the United States of America.

    “A felony almost certainly does.

    A felony in conjunction with a catastrophically unqualified candidate DEFINITELY does.

    A felony in conjunction with a catastrophically unqualified candidate who wants to “abolish the federal government on Day One” makes such a person a laughingstock.”

    Adam Kokesh’s felony was for filming a video of himself loading a shotgun in Washington DC while talking about the right to keep and bear arms. There are millions of people, and millions of gun owners in particular, who would consider this arrest to be BS, and who would consider Adam’s actions in regard to this to have been heroic.

  17. Gina

    ” Rothbard/Paul “red state values” faction trying to purge radicals who smoke pot, have homosexual relations or abortions, love Gandhi, talk to Green hippies, etc. ”

    We need the exact opposite. Get rid of the “red state values” assholes. More pot, more LGBT, more abortions, more Gandhi and more hippies please.

  18. Andy

    Murray Rothbard was pro-abortion.

    As for Ron Paul, he has done more good for the libertarian movement than anyone, and as I pointed out above, even though some people have accused him of being “too conservative,” he has probably gotten more leftists to become libertarians than anyone else.

  19. Carol Moore/Secession.net

    Andy: The Ron Paul of 1987 was quite different from the one of 2007. He was much more right wing, given to slimy tactics and associations, and sometimes seemed almost creepy because he knew he was up to no good on his LP takeover program.

    I think hanging around with young libertarians with more liberal views for the intervening years probably had a positive effect. And going back to congress and seeing how much worse the swamp had become.

    So I have been relatively uncritical of him in last 10 years, especially since he was one of main voices speaking out against the danged wars, when LP people were pretty much USELESS…

  20. Andy

    I have watched some of the old Ron Paul videos from 1987-1988, and that is not an accurate description of what I saw. Like Ron’s appearance on The Morton Downey Jr. Show, where he argued against the War on Drugs with a hostile crowd and a hostile Morton Downey Jr.

  21. Carol Moore/Secession.net

    Andy: I’m talking about political manipulations and less public viewpoints, not public appearances.

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