Barr delegate Doug Craig upset over Helms press release

Doug Craig — proprietor of Crazy for Liberty and a Barr delegate at the Denver convention — had this to say about the Barr campaign’s recent press release imploring libertarians to “give thanks to God” for the “life and work” of Jesse Helms:

Sometimes being a party man does not override common sense… I understand You should not talk ill of the dead but you should smart enough to know this man was not liked by Libertarians. Bob Barr would have been better off keeping this to himself. If this is how he felt then he should have sent a private letter to the family. Why would you poke the hard core Libertarians in the eye with this press release?

Craig also said that the above post would be his last about Bob Barr for a while, and seemed to indicate he was rescinding his support for the candidate he helped nominate in Denver. “I will continue to work on state party stuff including are great local candidates,” Craig said. He also indicated that Georgian Libertarians would likely be upset by his post.

47 thoughts on “Barr delegate Doug Craig upset over Helms press release

  1. inDglass

    “Helms was also a hardcore interventionist. He had ties to Salvadorian death squads and was an outspoken supporter of fascist dictator Pinochet of Chile.”

    Wow. The LP’s presidential campaign for 2008 is a joke.

  2. Gene Trosper

    Wow. The LP’s presidential campaign for 2008 is a joke.

    Yeah, Badnarik’s campaign really set the standard for future campaigns, eh?

  3. FreeMarketeer

    Yeah, Badnarik’s campaign really set the standard for future campaigns, eh?

    Go jump off a cliff for a change, Trosper.

    Your candidate — the guy you’ve been cheerleading for a while since the Denver convention — is a racist sympathizer and a supporter of racism. He praised a senator who should NEVER be praised. In fact, he should be damned for the evils he brought into this world.

    This isn’t about Michael Badnarik and his 2004 campaign. That campaign, yes, was a joke, but only because collectivists and GOP shills invaded and infested that campaign. But it’s a moot matter, because that was 4 years ago. We’re talking about Barr and his praising of a white supremacist senator who went from being a Democrat to a Republican and was a racist.

    Helms was a Republican. He was a conservative. Conservatives are vile, evil, and repugnant. He should be damned, and his grave should be spit upon. It’s a damn good thing this man is dead, because he’s a vile turd who deserves to burn in hell.

    Bob Barr, who has the temerity to praise this man, should drop out of the LP and save the Party any future embarrassment. He will be doing you guys, the Party, his campaign supporters, and himself a huge favor.

    Look around you, Gene. The LP is dying. The Barr/Root campaign ain’t getting the coverage that you guys claimed he would. Except for his joke-of-an-appearance on Glenn Beck and several Fox News shows, he’s gotten little to no coverage nationwide. And his campaign promise of $40 million? Puh-leeze! He’s only accumulated over $330,000 in donations, the most he’ll probably get is $350,000, maybe a little more than that.

    Any one who supports a presidential candidate who supports a racist is a moron, not to mention a racist scumbag, and should be treated as such.

    Yours in Liberty,

    Todd Andrew Barnett
    Vice Chair, Boston Tea National Committee
    http://www.bostonea.us

  4. sunshinebatman

    Of course, most blacks in Georgia think Bob Barr is “passing.”

    I’m tempted to call Barr-bashers “racists” for voting against the octoroon candidate.

  5. paulie cannoli

    This isn’t about Michael Badnarik and his 2004 campaign. That campaign, yes, was a joke

    Perhaps you mean his 2006 congressional race?

    Badnarik started 2004 with nothing, and ended up in the neighborhood of Harry Browne.

  6. Thomas L. Knapp

    I suspect that Barr will do far better than $350,000 on the money front.

    He’ll probably raise more than Badnarik 2004 (a little more than $1 million). He may do as well as Brown 2000 ($2.x million).

    One thing he almost certainly won’t do is run a $40 million, or even $10 million, campaign. Another thing he almost certainly won’t do is eclipse Ed Clark’s 1980 record of ~920,000 votes.

    Why won’t he do those things?

    Certainly not because he’s pissed off the LP’s radicals, or because the LP’s radicals were insufficiently supportive of him. The LP’s “reformers” will, to a certainty, attempt to blame the radicals for Barr’s inability to deliver on their fantasies — but that argument will just be adding another fantasy to an already tall stack of them.

    Barr won’t do well for the same reason he isn’t doing good: He’s the nominee of the Libertarian Party, but instead of running as a libertarian, he keeps trying to present himself as a conservative — and not just a conservative, but a crank-niche conservative of the bygone Dixiecrat era. He’s doing his damnedest to make himself and the LP oh, about as relevant as the Prohibition Party and its nominee. And it’s working.

  7. Sean Scallon

    Let’s see, 6% in recent national polls and appearances on ABC and Fox and many other national news shows. Gee, I didn’t realize the badnarik campaign set the bar high for future LP presidential candidates.

  8. Trent Hill

    “Helms was a Republican. He was a conservative. Conservatives are vile, evil, and repugnant. He should be damned, and his grave should be spit upon. It’s a damn good thing this man is dead, because he’s a vile turd who deserves to burn in hell.”

    Todd Andrew Barnett,

    First off–as the vice chairman of a party, im not sure you should be wasting your time on such blogs. But ill look past that.

    Your comments are vile. Collectivist and repugnant in nature, you claim that all conservatives are “evil”. I hope you keep speaking like that, so that everyone know you are just another collectivist.

  9. Carl M

    Mr. Barnett is off by 70K and it’s only July 8.

    Praising Jesse Helms’ accomplishments does not imply endorsement of every one of his qualities. It is good taste to focus on a person’s good qualities when doing obituaries and funerals.

    This is nowhere near as bad as the Ron Paul newsletter scandal. It’s not as bad as Harry Browne’s 2000 ads featuring blowing up buildings and disposing of babies.

    Bob Barr is on track to get the level of coverage of Nader at his height. This is unprecedented for the LP. While his background is conservative, he is focusing his rhetoric on civil liberties.

  10. Thomas L. Knapp

    Trent,

    OK, if you want to take the “collectivist” edge off, let’s talk doctrines instead of people.

    While conservativism is a vile, evil, repugnant, anti-American, anti-freedom and anti-life ideology, I agree that not all conservatives are vile, evil, repugnant, anti-American, anti-freedom and anti-life. Many of them are simply ignorant of the ideology they’re advocating for.

    Happy now?

  11. Thomas L. Knapp

    Sean,

    Yes, Barr is getting more media than Badnarik got. It’s unfortunate that he’s using that media try to breathe life back into the dead ideology of Dixiecratism instead of to promote the Libertarian Party’s policy agenda.

    As far as polling is concerned, Badnarik was polling at 5% in August of 2004 — and third party candidates tend to poll higher earlier than they do late.

    As the election gets closer, more and more Republicans and Democrats become less and less willing to take a third party leap, not necessarily because they think their party chose the best candidate, but because they think the other major party chose the worst of all possible candidates, that Armageddon would follow that candidate’s victory, and that voting third party increases the chances of that happening.

    As the election gets closer, the media angle also begins to change — it moves even further away from substantive discussion of third party candidates’ policy agendas and toward those candidates’ possible “spoiler” potential, encouraging the trend described in the last paragraph.

    Of course, the focus has been almost entirely on “Barr as spoiler” already — thank Goddess. The LP is finally on the same page as the MSM … both find Barr’s beliefs too bizarre, troglodytic and embarrassing to want to discuss them very much.

  12. Scott Lieberman

    From all of those comments above it looks like Thomas Knapp’s main goal is to decrease the number of votes that Bob Barr gets, instead of increasing the number of votes that Charles Jay gets.

    Plus, it is a conflict of interest for Knapp to run for Congress as a Libertarian, and to simultaneously run for Vice-President against Wayne Root.

    But of course, the only LP members who can be guilty of having a conflict of interest are Reform Caucus members.

    Mr. Knapp – why are you trying to play for both teams at the same time? Are you keeping your LP membership as an insurance policy in case the BTP is a big flop?

  13. Steve LaBianca

    Mr. Lieberman, Barr is capable all on his own of decreasing the # of votes he gets.

    Do you think that Barr should get a blank check when he promotes a conservative (nearly always) rather than a libertarian line, simply because criticism might shed a bad light and reduce the vote total?

    The real importance isn’t # of votes . . . It’s how effective will the conservative Barr/W.A.R. campaign (or any libertarian campaign for that matter) be in promoting libertarianism, keeping the LP libertarian, while growing it.

    Barr in my view, fails these tests thus far, and is digging himself deeper, and further from libertarian success.

  14. Thomas L. Knapp

    Scott,

    “From all of those comments above it looks like Thomas Knapp’s main goal is to decrease the number of votes that Bob Barr gets, instead of increasing the number of votes that Charles Jay gets.”

    It would take a serious — and probably intentionally so — misreading of my comments to reach any such conclusion. Analysis/prediction is not the same as advocacy or activism.

    “Plus, it is a conflict of interest for Knapp to run for Congress as a Libertarian, and to simultaneously run for Vice-President against Wayne Root.”

    I don’t know where you got the idea from that I’m running for vice-president against Wayne Root. To the best of my knowledge, my name neither appears nor will likely appear on any ballot opposite that of Root.

    “But of course, the only LP members who can be guilty of having a conflict of interest are Reform Caucus members.”

    Far from it — but I’d be interested in knowing exactly where you see this alleged conflict of interest.

    Last time I looked, I was not an officer or member of the LNC with any fiduciary duty to the national party.

    Nor, in the state where I am a minor party official (county committee member and state executive committee alternate), am I serving on or promoting any slate other than the LP’s.

    Last weekend, I (with some help from my kids and a friend) put 300 brochures featuring the LP’s presidential ticket on doors. I’ve committed to hanging at least 700 more, and will probably do more than that.

    Earlier in June, I sunburned the hell out of my bald grape promoting Barr at a MOLP booth at Mid-Missouri PrideFest. I circulated a flier of my own design, featuring a photo of that district’s LP congressional candidate (my spouse) standing with Bob Barr, at that event, and I talked up his (at that time) reversal on DOMA.

    Hell, I even volunteered to set up a fundraiser for Wayne Allyn Root here in Missouri on the 19th of this month, and was working on that until Bob Sullentrup’s MOLP/GOP splinter clique threw a fit and appropriated control of that fundraiser for themselves (and removed all mention of the MOLP’s event featuring Root that same day from their promotion of it).

    My congressional campaign’s first order of postcards/doorhangers is on the way right now. It promotes me as an LP, not BTP, candidate, and it promotes the LP specifically by urging participation in the party’s August primary.

    If I have a “conflict of interest,” the LP has definitely been on the winning side of that conflict so far.

    “Mr. Knapp – why are you trying to play for both teams at the same time? Are you keeping your LP membership as an insurance policy in case the BTP is a big flop?”

    A more probative question would be why I am keeping my BTP membership. There are a number of true answers to that question, and I’ve given some of them elsewhere, but with respect to your interest, the answer would be that I keep my BTP membership as an insurance policy in case the LP can’t be saved.

    Regards,
    Tom Knapp

  15. Trent Hill

    “While conservativism is a vile, evil, repugnant, anti-American, anti-freedom and anti-life ideology, I agree that not all conservatives are vile, evil, repugnant, anti-American, anti-freedom and anti-life. Many of them are simply ignorant of the ideology they’re advocating for.

    Happy now?”

    Yes, that was a much more suitable statement for a libertarian. It’s still wrong, dont misunderstand me, but its much more in line with your own doctrine. Neoconservatism is evil, Old Right conservatism is splendid. =)

  16. G.E. Post author

    Trent – It is important to note that the “Old Right” encompassed a lot of bad stuff. We read authors who have a selective view of “Old Right,” but the broader definition is far from “splendid.”

    To the extent that the Old Right was good, it was mislabeled as “conservative” — and in fact, that’s a bit of a retrofit, too, I’m pretty sure. The best elements of the Old Right traced lineage back to classical liberalism — as you, Lew Rockwell, Thomas DiLorenzo, etc. do. True “conservatism” was the opposition philosophy — it is the repugnant and collectivist creed of your brother in arms, Red Phillips.

  17. paulie cannoli

    Neoconservatism is evil, Old Right conservatism is splendid. =)

    Only when compared with neoconservatism and modern big government liberalism.

  18. Steve LaBianca

    “Craig . . . seemed to indicate he was rescinding his support for the candidate he helped nominate in Denver.”

    As I stated in a comment here or on another blog, I would not be surprised if 100 or more Barr “electors” in Denver have changed their mind and would now vote for someone else to be the nominee.

  19. Scott Lieberman

    I hope you can understand why I might not know who the current Vice-Presidential Nominee of the Boston Tea Party is. It seems the BTP isn’t really clear who their Presidential or Vice-Pres. Nominees are either…

    http://bostontea.us/

    Usually, a political party’s home page makes it really clear who their Pres/VP Nominees are. Maybe that info is buried on that page somewhere, but you should not have be Sherlock Holmes to find out that basic information.

  20. G.E. Post author

    Liberman – Until a week or so ago, it would have been VERY difficult to find out who Bob Barr’s running mate was on his own home page!

  21. G.E. Post author

    Sorry, Lieberman… misspelling of name was not intended as insult.

  22. Sean Scallon

    Tom, please tell me which national poll had Badnarik at 5% back in 2004. I know of none. And if its that bogus New Mexico statewide poll, don’t bother.

    I don’t disagree that Barr is more conservative leaning that previous LP nominees since Ron Paul in 1988. But the only way the LP is going to expand its vote totals is in the direction that wayward Republicans are heading. Certainly they weren’t heading in Badnarik or Browne or Marrou’s direction. Pure libertarianism hasn’t worked as a vote getter for the LP, this has been demonstrated on numerous occasions.

    If you want a pure libertarian party, that’s fine, use the BTP as your vehicle. But just remember that many leading “pure libertarians” haven’t followed you (at least not yet) and the more others abandon the LP for the island of the BTP, the more Barr type activists take over energized by the Paul campaign.

    It may be that some of Barr support’s might drift back to McCain in the fall. It also may be, that McCain’s cause becomes so hopeless, that more Republicans will vote for Barr if they actually want to feel good about who they are voting for if the outcome has already been decided.

  23. G.E. Post author

    Sean – Tom also does not like Ron Paul, but I and other radicals do. To me, the problem is not Bob Barr’s “conservatism” in the sense that Ron Paul is “conservative,” but his statism.

  24. Thomas L. Knapp

    Scott,

    You write:

    “I hope you can understand why I might not know who the current Vice-Presidential Nominee of the Boston Tea Party is. ”

    I’m the vice-presidential nominee of the Boston Tea Party.

    However, if I have my way, I’ll appear on no ballots. Dan Sallis, Jr. is the VP candidate on the Colorado ballot. Hopefully John Wayne Smith will be the VP candidate on the Florida ballot. And so on, and so forth.

    Sean,

    You write:

    “Tom, please tell me which national poll had Badnarik at 5% back in 2004. I know of none. And if its that bogus New Mexico statewide poll, don’t bother.”

    I never claimed that Badnarik performed at 5% in a national poll, I said that he performed at 5% in New Mexico. The poll in question was in no way, shape, manner or form “bogus.” It was conducted by a reputable company (Rasmussen) and according to accepted polling standards. Badnarik legitimately — sans puff or push — polled 5% there twice, two weeks apart (although the cross-tabs changed considerably).

    “[T]he only way the LP is going to expand its vote totals is in the direction that wayward Republicans are heading”

    That’s where we disagree. “Wayward Republicans” are almost all conservatives, and no third party will ever cut significant political hay on a conservative platform.

    Conservatism as an ideology is inherently protective of the status quo [1]. Third parties as political entities are inherently opposed to the status quo.

    Never the twain shall meet. They’ll piss and moan and wail and gnash their teeth, but when push comes to shove 99% of conservatives will always stick with their Grand Old Party — and move to the other status quo party, rather than some new-fangled forward-looking outfit, if forced to move at all.

    If any third party has a future, that future is on the left.

    Regards,
    Tom Knapp

    1. Conservatism is “a paradigm of essences toward which the phenomenology of the world is in continuing approximation.” It “stands athwart the tracks of history yelling ‘stop!'” When Social Security was new, conservatives hated it and fought like hell to stop it. By the time it was old enough to buy a beer, conservatives’ talking points were on how to “preserve” it — because conservatism is about freezing existence into an existing, familiar, comfortable frame of reference and KEEPING IT THERE.

  25. Steven R Linnabary

    Sean Scallon says:

    I don’t disagree that Barr is more conservative leaning that previous LP nominees since Ron Paul in 1988. But the only way the LP is going to expand its vote totals is in the direction that wayward Republicans are heading. Certainly they weren’t heading in Badnarik or Browne or Marrou’s direction. Pure libertarianism hasn’t worked as a vote getter for the LP, this has been demonstrated on numerous occasions.

    OTOH, it has never really been tried, either. Every LP POTUS campaign has limped to election day barely getting on the ballot. Never has there been any talk of libertarian philosophy, especially in the MSM.

    Before throwing out the libertarian philosophy, perhaps we should TRY selling it first.

    Far too many people think of the LP as merely a “Cafeterian” Party, with a few liberal and a few conservative issues thrown in, totally missing the bigger picture, that being the libertarian philosophy.

    Now, to really complicate matters, Barr praises a racist former legislator. It might win a few votes, but is it worth the cost?

    PEACE
    Steve

  26. Mike Guess

    Republican Lite candidate Bob Barr will have no impact on this election. No one is metioning him where I live and work. 400,000 votes and no more. The LP is thrashing in its death throes. R.I.P.

  27. Sean Scallon

    The reason no one talks about pure libertarian philosphy is because most people feel its nothing more than dressed up anarchism. And since anarchism is not sellable to the American people any more than Communism or Nazism for the that matter, then pure LP candidates can’t sell themseleves either.

    Chuck Badnarik is about as good as it gets as far pure libertarianisn goes and the bottom line is he got the fewerest amount of LP votes since 1976.

  28. Thomas L. Knapp

    “Badnarik is about as good as it gets as far pure libertarianisn goes and the bottom line is he got the fewerest amount of LP votes since 1976.”

    Badnarik got more votes than David Bergland (1984) or Andre Marrou (1992). He performed in the same neighborhood as Ron Paul (1988) and Harry Browne (2000), for a fraction of the campaign cost.

    “Purity” can be tricky to define, but I think it’s fairly obvious that Badnarik was less “pure” than Browne or Bergland. Badnarik was definitely more in the “Ron Paul conservative” vein.

  29. Steve LaBianca

    Thomas L. Knapp // Jul 9, 2008 at 12:14 pm

    “Badnarik got more votes than David Bergland (1984) or Andre Marrou (1992). He performed in the same neighborhood as Ron Paul (1988) and Harry Browne (2000), for a fraction of the campaign cost.”

    True in terms of raw vote totals, but only roughly equivalent with Browne in 2000 as far as % of votes cast. Still, he did better than Bergland and Marrou (’84 and ’92 respectively).

    “Purity” can be tricky to define, but I think it’s fairly obvious that Badnarik was less “pure” than Browne or Bergland. Badnarik was definitely more in the “Ron Paul conservative” vein.

    True enough, Mr. Badnarik emphasized his “constitutional class” and the constitution as the cornerstone of his presidential campaign, but in personal conversations that I had with himmy impression of him is that he is philosophically more radical than the “constitutional” viewpoint.

  30. G.E. Post author

    I see no conflict between constitutionalism and libertarianism. Once one abandons the liberal constitutional interpretations of Tom Knapp, and you realize that the Constitution is intended to LIMIT the federal government not “guarantee rights,” then where is the conflict? What is wrong with a legal charter that limits the power of the federal government? Nothing. As for those things that the Constitution PERMITS the federal government to do that we might not like (regulate trade), there is nothing saying that it MUST do those things.

    I think the problem libertarians have with the Constitution is that they’ve been indoctrinated in the liberal “constitutional law” viewpoint. The REAL Constitution was chartered by the states, not the people, and limits the central government, not the people or the states (except for a few very precise cases for the latter).

  31. George Phillies

    Knapp writes “…Badnarik… performed in the same neighborhood as … Harry Browne (2000), for a fraction of the campaign cost.”

    The Badnarik General Election campaign actually raised more money than the Harry Browne 2000 general election campaign. There was a day when this happened, and it was a fundraising incentive.

    Browne raised another million-plus to get the nomination. Details are in my book Funding Liberty http://3mpub.com/phillies .

  32. pdsa

    G.E.: you cannot just leap willy-nilly over the 14th Amendment, and your assertion that it was not lawfully enacted is a bit weak.

    The 14th does act as a bar to the actions of individual states, and I am of the same opinion that William O. Douglas was: that there should be a full substantiation of the minimal Federal Rights to act as a bar to the actions of the individual states. The 14th Amendment was enacted to solve what was perceived to be a Constitutional flaw, which allowed individual states to engage in tyrannical practises, after the Civil War.

    Originalism has a valid place in Constitutional arguments, but it cannot just forget about interceding amendments. They hold precedent over the original text, whether one agrees with them or not.

  33. G.E. Post author

    If a man comes to your house, holds a gun to your wife’s head, rapes her, and then forges her signature saying that she consented to have sex prior to the rape, and also writes a “law” saying that no court can ever question what happened, I guess that would be okay with you.

    My assertion is NOT weak. The above would have more validity than the 14th amendment. It was NOT ratified, even under coercion, and even if it were (it wasn’t!) it doesn’t mean what courts have subsequently — 50 years and more later — said it means.

  34. Thomas L. Knapp

    Whether or not the 14th was properly ratified is certainly an interesting question. History has settled the de facto answer to that question in the affirmative.

    The debates on the 14th would be the logical place to look for original intent — and if you have a look at those debates, you’ll find that both the amendment’s supporters and opponents clearly and irrefutably ascribed to it the exact meaning (“incorporation”) that you reject as an invention of the courts.

    As far as the Constitution being intended only to “limit” the federal government, nothing could be further from the truth. It dramatically expanded the power of the federal government beyond the power said government had under the Articles of Confederation, and it was specifically intended to do exactly that by its framers.

    If basing my understanding of the Constitution on verifiable fact rather than convenient fantasy makes me a “liberal,” so be it.

  35. G.E. Post author

    The notion that the framers’ intent is important is another liberal obfuscation. What matters is the intent of the RATIFIERS.

    Yes, the Constitution’s authoring was nothing short of a coup by a centralist cabal, led by Madison, Hamilton, and Washington. Its intent and effect was to give the central government more power. HOWEVER, in selling it to the states, the framers pitched it as a document that would strictly limit federal power (expanding it beyond the Articles but only to a “necessary” degree).

    The ratifiers were men of the states. The understanding with which they ratified the Constitution is what’s important, not the secret intent of Madison, Hamilton, and Washington.

    Never said you were a liberal. I said you accept a liberal interpretation of the Constitution. I was going to put a 🙂 in parenthesis but I wasn’t sure that would work. No offense intended.

  36. paulie cannoli

    “Wayward Republicans” are almost all conservatives, and no third party will ever cut significant political hay on a conservative platform.

    Conservatism as an ideology is inherently protective of the status quo [1]. Third parties as political entities are inherently opposed to the status quo.

    Never the twain shall meet. They’ll piss and moan and wail and gnash their teeth, but when push comes to shove 99% of conservatives will always stick with their Grand Old Party — and move to the other status quo party, rather than some new-fangled forward-looking outfit, if forced to move at all.

    If any third party has a future, that future is on the left.

    Regards,
    Tom Knapp

    1. Conservatism is “a paradigm of essences toward which the phenomenology of the world is in continuing approximation.” It “stands athwart the tracks of history yelling ’stop!’” When Social Security was new, conservatives hated it and fought like hell to stop it. By the time it was old enough to buy a beer, conservatives’ talking points were on how to “preserve” it — because conservatism is about freezing existence into an existing, familiar, comfortable frame of reference and KEEPING IT THERE.

    Exactly! I have been beating my head against a wall trying to get Libertarians to realize this for this entire decade.

    All I have for my trouble is one hell of a headache, and a party dead set to move to a reich wing dead end.

    I haven’t left the Libertarian Party, but it’s sure doing a great job of leaving me.

    At this point, sunk costs is all that is holding me – never a wise strategy, so I don’t know how much longer I will succumb. Of course, as a life member, I don’t have to make a choice – I can just stop putting so much energy into it, and if at some point I discover that I am wrong and the LP is coming to its senses after all, I can become more active again.

    I’m just tired of rolling a rock uphill and having it roll back endlessly. Someone else can go do that now.

    I think I’m going to go for multiple party memberships simultaeously.

  37. paulie cannoli

    I see no conflict between constitutionalism and libertarianism. Once one abandons the liberal constitutional interpretations of Tom Knapp, and you realize that the Constitution is intended to LIMIT the federal government not “guarantee rights,” then where is the conflict? What is wrong with a legal charter that limits the power of the federal government? Nothing. As for those things that the Constitution PERMITS the federal government to do that we might not like (regulate trade), there is nothing saying that it MUST do those things.

    The problem with constitutionalism is that it tends to reinforce the illusion that government can be effectively limited. In reality, limited government is like limited malignant cancer. You have to cut out all of it, or it will grow right back, likely worse than before.

    Limiting government by any type of constitution is kind of like treating bacteria with antibiotics; sometimes effective, but creating resistant superbacteria in the long run.

    If it sounds like I’m suggesting that (coercive monopoly) government is similar to malignant cancer or parasitic bacterium by its nature, that is because I am.

    The other problem with constitutionalism is that it is isufficient. Certainly, I agree that it is more important to limit power at the federal level and above.

    But it is ALSO important to fight tyranny at the state and local levels. States right rhetoric obscures this fact, often intentionally so. Libertarians who limit their discussion of tyranny to the federal level and above should be called out on it every time – especially by those who (correctly, IMO) view turning to the federal government, or the UN, for help in resisting local and state tyranny as being counterproductive.

    If we don’t say it, who will? And if we forego using the feds to resist state tyranny, it becomes doubly important we do it ourselves.

    At LFV, Steve VanDyke (“Liberty mix coming soon – For reals!) says the LP platform should be replaced with the US Constitution. Utterly wrong and foolish, but a common and growing strain of thought among self-described libertarians, enabling an obscuring and glossing over of differences between libertarians and dixiecrat/theocon refugees from the NSGOP.

    Such refugees being highly counterproductive to the LP recruiting from the left and thus becoming a serious party (see my last comment).

    Great way to call out states rights constitutionalists to see where they stand on state level tyranny: Congress is DC’s legislature. Ask what policy they desire or would allow on sex, drugs, gambling, etc., for the district.

    For instance, I asked this through GE to Chuck Baldwin. He answered that he wants Congress to continue to be DC’s legislature, but not what policies he would advocate or countenance.

    I’d like to ask Bob Barr too, but he really doesn’t want to answer.

  38. G.E. Post author

    Paulie – I agree, but I still see no conflict. The Constitution was ratified a states as a (bad) replacement for the superior Articles of Confederation, but the purpose of the written Constitution was still to limit the power of the new central state.

    SVD is wrong. Obviously libertarians should advocate libertarianism at every level. However, libertarians should NOT advocate using the federal government’s guns to push libertarianism at lower levels of government. That is literally the stupidest thing I can imagine.

    I see no conflict with a libertarian constitutionalist view that seeks to hold the feds in line with the Constitution AND restrict them from doing things they’re actually authorized to do, too.

    And while I want libertarianism for Michigan and every state, who am I to tell the people of Alabama how they should live? Let them do their own thing. That is consistent with constitutionalism, unless they want to declare something other than gold or silver legal tender or regulate trade or movement between the states or deny their citizens a republican form of government. And if they want to do that, let them leave the voluntary union peacefully!

  39. FreeMarketeer

    Mr. Barnett is off by 70K and it’s only July 8.

    Carl Milsted is off his rocker here. Not to mention, neither qualified nor worthy of respect and trust to justify his conclusions to me and to everyone else regarding Bob Barr.

    I was generally correct about my citing of Barr’s fundraising practices. But, even if I were “off by 70 K,” so what? Even if Barr did receive over $400 K or $500 K, so what? How is that impressive in the grand scheme of things? It’s not. Not by a long shot.

    Not only that, it’s not even in the neighborhood of $40 million that the Barr Campaign promised its campaign supporters and the LP members. It won’t even reach the neighborhood of $10 million that some of the insiders think it could touch.

    On top of that, the Barr Campaign isn’t brewing the fiery passion, interest, and love for its candidate that the Ron Paul for President Campaign generated for its candidate. Sure, Barr is getting some media coverage, but so what? Ron Paul got FAR more media interest in his campaign than Barr’s been getting, and Paul appeared on “Real Time with Bill Maher” twice. Has Barr ever done that for his campaign? (Well, he did appear on “Real Time” once a few years ago, but only as a conservative panelist before he joined the LP; thus, that doesn’t count.)

    Paul generated the kind of campaign that Ronald Reagan could never create. The same isn’t said for Barr.

    Praising Jesse Helms’ accomplishments does not imply endorsement of every one of his qualities. It is good taste to focus on a person’s good qualities when doing obituaries and funerals.

    No, it’s not. Not especially when that person happens to be the late Senator Jesse Helms. If it were just a letter to the family expressing the campaign’s condolences, that would be one thing. But it’s another when it’s a press release extoling the “life and work of Jesse Helms,” particularly when that life and work involves bigoted and racist policies, such as Helms’ support for Jim Crow in the 1960s when he was a Democrat then. Where were the Republicans then when that crap was going on if they “opposed” slavery or even racial segregation of the South? Why didn’t they speak out against Helms for his racist and prejudiced work against African Americans in the U.S.?

    All of these actions are authoritarian and statist by nature, and it’s a damn shame that Barr would praise the “life and work” of Jesse Helms that should be rejected.

    The last thing libertarians should be viewed as is racist and bigoted towards minorities. That’s a conservative mentality. It’s vile and diabolical.

    It’s not a surprise that Barr doesn’t feel this way, yet it is still repugnant nonetheless.

    This is nowhere near as bad as the Ron Paul newsletter scandal. It’s not as bad as Harry Browne’s 2000 ads featuring blowing up buildings and disposing of babies.

    The difference between Paul and Barr on their respective controversies is that Paul denounced the racism that was espoused in the newsletters, and Jim Kirchick, a Rudy Giuliani crony, was using the New Republic as a tool to write a hit piece to smear Paul regarding the newsletters. While I do have a problem with the way Paul handled the newsletter controversy, it’s nothing compared to the open support for Jesse Helms that Barr made in his press release.

    That’s what makes him a racist sympathizer. Your ad hominem was a cheap shot, Milsted.

    But that’s typical of a racist, bigoted Republicrat such as yourself.

    As for Harry Browne, he never said anything racist or even sexist. In his “The Great Libertarian Offer” video, he showed that the IRS could be demolished and that the baby should be thrown out of the bathtub, even if it’s Rosemary’s Baby.

    And he was right. There was nothing racist, violent, or anti-children in his ads.

    You’re full of shit when you make these arguments, Milsted.

    Go jump off a bridge. You’d be doing the libertarian movement a favor.

    Bob Barr is on track to get the level of coverage of Nader at his height. This is unprecedented for the LP. While his background is conservative, he is focusing his rhetoric on civil liberties.

    Yeah, right. And I’m Ghenghis Khan reincarnated.

    Barr is a racist sympathizer. He will be viewed that way by many African Americans whether he intended for that to happen or not. Either way, it’s his fault.

    For Christ’s sake, he needs to take responsibility for that claptrap. Isn’t that what Libertarians supposedly believe in? Taking personal responsibility? When will that ever happen? How will that happen too? I doubt that will even be an issue to Bob Barr, but many of us and many Americans will take that seriously.

    While he is polling above 5 percent in many states, that in no way guarantees that he will get beyond 1 percent of the vote. And even if he did get beyond 1 percent of the vote (which I doubt he’ll get, but hey, I hope he proves me wrong), that meager percentage won’t get him anywhere elected to the White House and Wayne Allyn Root elected to the Vice Presidency.

    It’s July 11 now and it’s a sure bet that Obama will get the White House. Any claim that Barr will get double digits on Election Day should be disbelieved, not to mention ignored.

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