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Classically Liberal: Barr ‘always accompanied by handlers’ to keep libertarians away

“Barr is always accompanied by handlers whose job is to keep libertarians away from their presidential candidate so they can’t ask him questions about his Big Government positions,” says CLS of the Classically Liberal blog.

Referring to an encounter between Marc Victor, an attorney and sometimes radio host, and Bob Barr at last weekend’s Freedom Fest, which Barr chose to attend instead of Ron Paul’s Revolution March, CLS reports the following: “Marc says that when he brought up Barr’s anti-libertarian position on drugs that Barr glared at him and then gave one of his handlers a signal. A rather large woman, working for Barr then pushed her way between them in order to push Victor off to the sidelines. Barr then turned tail and ran in the opposite direction.”

CLS also relays the story of an encounter he witnessed between libertarian land developer Treg Loyden and Bob Barr: “Treg too had tried to ask Barr about his anti-libertarian position on the war on drugs. And like Marc Victor, Treg got the same treatment. First, he told Barr that his position on drugs was not acceptable and then waited for Barr to respond. Barr looked at him silently and simply refused to say anything. Barr instead turned away from Treg and started talking to a conservative.”

The unidentified conservative reportedly told Barr that he would not “waste his vote” on Barr, and instead, would vote for McCain. In response, Barr allegedly said, “Well, we can’t let them just keep ruining our party,” referring, of course, to the GOP and not the LP as “his” party.

Read the entire article at Classically Liberal.

46 Comments

  1. JustinG JustinG July 21, 2008

    I was one of the booth volunteers for the FreedomFest. I was not paid by the campaign to be there, although I “borrowed” frequent flier miles to make it there from Oregon.

    Marc first approached me (Barr was not in the booth at the time) demanding (in a hostile and peevish manner) why Barr had not defended legalization on CNN the night before. I told him I hadn’t seen the interview, nor did I know that one was being taped (it wasn’t- apparently it was a rebroadcast of the hour-long Glenn Beck show), but that if he wanted to ask Barr about it, (Barr) would be in the booth later.

    When Marc returned, he was both loud (I was ~10 feet away and could hear his voice clearly, if not the specific words) and combative. The lady in question did indeed intercede (I’ll not name her since her name needs not be dragged in the mud – you should note she, too was an unpaid volunteer) but only after the situation had effectively gotten out of hand.

    “What can I say to change your mind?” is a question used in sales to get your contact to fess up to their key issue. It by itself is only the mark of someone trying to convince another to buy into something. Frequently, I use that question as a gateway into discussing the libertarian point of view on a particular issue.

    Another common tactic in selling, or convincing, is to speak to people as though you are “one of them” – a member of their club, party, etc – so that they perceive you as understanding their issues and point of view.

    I did not witness this Treg come up to the booth, so I cannot comment on any of these things he claimed.

    As to David Friedman, he was there in the capacity of a writer/speaker for Liberty, I believe- he certainly spent a fair amount of time in their booth, which was next to ours. He was kind enough to let me handle his Asus mini-laptop during one of the lulls.

    He approached us (the people in the booth) after Marc’s first visit, saying that someone (I think he said Marc, but it is a bit fuzzy) had said that Barr had backed down on legalization, etc. We talked about it for a moment, but decided that we, as intelligent people speaking on a specific issue, needed facts to continue- so another (unpaid) volunteer and I used our smartphones to find this alleged interview. After several minutes, we determined which interview had to be the one in question, and reviewed the transcript.

    Mr. Friedman and I, and the other volunteer, discussed for several more minutes about Barr’s stance, and then Mr. Friedman had to go speak, if I recall correctly. I reminded him Barr would be in the booth later, and he shook his head, saying he had already made up his mind on Barr/Root (although I’m sure he got tangled in our pile of people later, but not sure that he spoke specifically to either candidate).

    I’ll end by stating that I have seen Barr on several other occasions ( in oregon at a findraiser, when I we interviewed him about “Don’t ask, Don’t Tell” at CLC last October) and I’ve never seen the evil net of handlers- although he does at times seem a little personally awkward.

  2. G.E. G.E. Post author | July 18, 2008

    Death merchant Carl M. sees no conflict between interventionism (which pays his salary) and the perverse little libertinism he considers “libertarian.” Anyone who doesn’t want to murder brown people is a racist, by his obscene logic.

    Yes, Howard Buffett was a “racist” who did not care at all about the size of government, right Carl? His anti-war views were just a smokescreen for white pride.

  3. Thomas L. Knapp Thomas L. Knapp July 18, 2008

    Well, aside from the question of “what’s wrong with Goldwater conservatives,” there’s the question of whether or not that’s even relevant.

    To put it a different way, even if there’s nothing wrong with Goldwater conservatives, and even if Bob Barr is a Goldwater conservative, it still doesn’t necessarily follow from those two points that the Libertarian Party should nominate a Goldwater conservative to represent it in the presidential race (or, for that matter, that once nominated an LP presidential candidate should campaign as a Goldwater conservative rather than as a libertarian).

  4. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli July 18, 2008

    The Old Right was isolationist because the enemy was racist dictatorships, and many in the Old Right were racists.

    Are you sure that was the sole reason? I tend to think it was more complicated than that – although certainly, there were some who would fit your characterization, I would also expect that in some cases it was the other way around – some people, of whom many were not racists, were in the Old Right in some significant part, or even entirely, because they were anti-interventionist.

  5. Thomas L. Knapp Thomas L. Knapp July 18, 2008

    “Who is ‘CLS?’ Does anyone wonder why the writer didn’t sign their real name to this story? It doesn’t help their credibility.”

    CLS is a long-time activist in the freedom movement both in the US and internationally. It’s not especially hard to figure out his real name if you care enough to pay attention to his writing.

    As to to why he blogs as “CLS,” it’s a long story — but it’s not really so much about “keeping his identity secret” as about keeping his blogging separate from some particularly nasty internecine fights of the past.

  6. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli July 18, 2008

    My original point to Robert was that there were/are indeed things wrong with Goldwater conservatives.

    Subsequent discussion has been over the issue of how broadly we define Goldwater conservative (and whether Ron Paul is one, for instance.)

  7. Fred Church Ortiz Fred Church Ortiz July 18, 2008

    I meant your original point, to Robert.

  8. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli July 18, 2008

    The issue of isolationism/intervention is not inherent in either liberalism, conservatism or even libertarianism.

    I’d say it is involved in libertarianism. War is the health of the state, and all that.

    One of the most libertarian societies in history was also one of the most interventionist: Britain in the 1800s. Britain had free trade, capitalism and legal drugs at the same time it built one of the largest empires in human history.

    It was also noted for its mandatory Victorian morality. We should be a bit careful with these “One of the most libertarian societies in history” characterizations.

  9. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli July 18, 2008

    My point was in response to Ron Paul perhaps at times claiming to be in the tradition of Goldwater and Reagan when seeking Republican votes.

  10. Fred Church Ortiz Fred Church Ortiz July 18, 2008

    “Ron Paul is a Taft/Buffett Republican, not a Goldwaterite. You know this. ”

    “He can certainly claim to be in the tradition of Goldwater, or even Reagan, for rhetorical points among Republicans, but that does not make it entirely true.”

    Certainly, I’m not trying to attach Goldwater’s foreign policy to RP – but as paulie points out, for “rhetorical points” Goldwater (and even Reagan) can be evoked by someone as a forebearer even if the fit isn’t perfect. But I see now I’ve missed the point, paulie’s remark was in response to someone else attaching the Goldwater mold elsewhere, not claiming it for themselves.

  11. Carl M Carl M July 18, 2008

    The Old Right was isolationist because the enemy was racist dictatorships, and many in the Old Right were racists. The New Right took up internationalism because of the rise of communism.

    The issue of isolationism/intervention is not inherent in either liberalism, conservatism or even libertarianism. It all depends on who the enemy is. If the enemy is communism, leftists will favor isolationism. If the enemy is fascism, leftists will call for intervention. (Note Clinton in Yugoslavia.)

    One of the most libertarian societies in history was also one of the most interventionist: Britain in the 1800s. Britain had free trade, capitalism and legal drugs at the same time it built one of the largest empires in human history.

  12. Bill Woolsey Bill Woolsey July 18, 2008

    What were Root’s alleged remarks on Israel, nukes, and Iran supposed to mean?

  13. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli July 18, 2008

    If your definition of a Goldwater conservative is limited to Goldwater himself, I don’t think you’ll be hearing anything new from him.

    I can certainly hear things I have not heard before. Just because they are not new does not mean they aren’t new to me.


    If it includes those that have claimed his legacy on the whole or partly, such as Ron Paul, then your comment is cryptic and leaves me feeling empty.

    That depends on whether you really consider Ron Paul a Goldwater Conservative. It seems to me that RP is more anti-imperialist, more socially conservative, and more (classically) economically liberal than BG ever was. He can certainly claim to be in the tradition of Goldwater, or even Reagan, for rhetorical points among Republicans, but that does not make it entirely true.

  14. Robert K Stock Robert K Stock July 18, 2008

    aynrkey:

    The only time I ever voted for someone who agreed with me 100% was when I ran for office and voted for myself.

    Bob Barr is the best candidate even if he disagrees with some LP issues.

    I will vote for the candidate who agrees with me on the most issues. That is my litmus test. Not one issue such as the war, drugs, gay rights, gold standard, or any other libertarian issue. The candidate who gets the most points on libertarian issues overall gets my vote.

    100% agreement on all issues will never happen no matter who the candidate is.

  15. G.E. G.E. Post author | July 18, 2008

    Fred – Ron Paul is a Taft/Buffett Republican, not a Goldwaterite. You know this. Goldwater represents the New Right, not the Old. He himself was a delegate for Eisenhower in ’52, AGAINST Taft. Militarism is quintessential to Goldwater “conservatism.”

  16. aynrkey aynrkey July 18, 2008

    Robert Stock,

    What about those issues where he disagrees with the LP even today? What about those issues where he disagreed in the past and has made no comment on since? I’ll slide those issues he claims to have converted on, but I’ll still address the many issues on which he hasn’t.

  17. Carl M Carl M July 18, 2008

    I like this line:

    He later saw Wayne Root and tried to talk to him. Root started to speak to Treg but saw David Friedman, Milton’s son, and tried to rassle up his support.

    I’d walk away too if it got me a chance to talk to David Friedman. Duh! David Friedman is one of the few remaining anarcho-capitalists I still respect. He actually faces the tough questions instead of going into an toddler-style rage.

    If you go to Freedom Fest, expect to get blown off. So many celebrities, so little time…

  18. Fred Church Ortiz Fred Church Ortiz July 18, 2008

    Sure there is. I’ve yet to hear of Goldwater denouncing the military-industrial complex, for example.

    If your definition of a Goldwater conservative is limited to Goldwater himself, I don’t think you’ll be hearing anything new from him. If it includes those that have claimed his legacy on the whole or partly, such as Ron Paul, then your comment is cryptic and leaves me feeling empty.

  19. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli July 18, 2008

    He has changed position on the drug war, Patriot Act and DOMA.

    How much has he changed his positions? Inquiring minds want to know the details.

  20. paulie cannoli paulie cannoli July 18, 2008

    There is nothing wrong with Barry Goldwater style conservative Republicans.

    Sure there is. I’ve yet to hear of Goldwater denouncing the military-industrial complex, for example.

    The US grew to its present level of statism by gradual steps and will only achieve libertarian goals by gradual steps.

    One does not follow from the other. Rome was not built in a day, but it was sacked in a day. A house of cards may take a long time to build and an instant to collapse.

    The first step is to get elected. Without that everything else is a waste of time and money.

    If you sell out the goal for which you are seeking election and make election itself the goal, it’s a waste of time and money for anyone whose primary goal remains liberty rather than election.

    Who is “CLS”? Does anyone wonder why the writer didn’t sign their real name to this story? It doesn’t help their credibility.

    Hardly. CLS is someone who does not wish to be subject to ad hominem attacks and retributions. The blog is well read, recently passing 500,000 hits, and well written. Why would that hurt credibility? Many of the important political tracts of history, including ancient Rome and revolutionary America, were published pseudonymously.

  21. thearmyranger31 thearmyranger31 July 18, 2008

    I think there is some truth to this blog. This was the election where I was going to forgo to “lesser of two evils” and make an intelligent third party vote. I’m sad to say that Obama — with all of his many flaws — is actually the best choice this time around. I may very well have gone Libertarian but Barr is too conservative. Baldwin is too conservative. McKinney is out there. Don’t know much about Jay or if he is even on my ballot… I know I’m not the most brainy person who comments on here, but I am more disenchanted than ever. Especially when Obama is the best pick for me.

    http://www.modernwhig.org
    For the rest of us

  22. lgoldman lgoldman July 18, 2008

    Who is “CLS”? Does anyone wonder why the writer didn’t sign their real name to this story? It doesn’t help their credibility.

  23. Robert K Stock Robert K Stock July 17, 2008

    There is nothing wrong with Barry Goldwater style conservative Republicans.

    The goal is smaller government, lower taxes and more freedom.

    The US grew to its present level of statism by gradual steps and will only achieve libertarian goals by gradual steps.

    The first step is to get elected. Without that everything else is a waste of time and money.

  24. johncjackson johncjackson July 17, 2008

    One does not have to be a “purist” Libertarian to oppose the conservative Republican agenda of Bob Barr. What a strange idea.

    I would say anyone who is even remotely a “moderate” Libertarian should have a lot of issues with Barr.

  25. Mike Guess Mike Guess July 17, 2008

    Barr is Republican and always will be a Republican. Shame on the delegates who voted for Barr. Disgraceful.

  26. johncjackson johncjackson July 17, 2008

    Stock,

    The problem is that apparently Barr has NOT changed. He avoids the topics specifically and still considers himself a conservative Republican.

  27. Mike Theodore Mike Theodore July 17, 2008

    Shame on every last one of his delegates in Denver.

    Shame, shame , shame, shame, shame.

  28. Robert K Stock Robert K Stock July 17, 2008

    I think Bob Barr is doing the right thing to keep certain LP members away from him.

    He has changed position on the drug war, Patriot Act and DOMA. Disgruntled purists do the LP no favor by bringing up his past stands on these issues.

    He should ignore those LP members who refuse to accept his Road to Damascus conversion and concentrate on getting non LP members to vote for the LP ticket.

  29. Jared Jared July 17, 2008

    Write-in votes are counted in Michigan even if a candidate isn’t registered. It will just be counted as “Write-in” though and that is it. I’ve filled that circle in with an empty space next to it many times in the 4 years I’ve been able to vote.

  30. G.E. G.E. Post author | July 17, 2008

    Andy – In most states, candidates have to officially declare themselves write-ins for their votes to be counted.

    Unless your state is an exception to this rule, your vote for Ron Paul will NOT be counted and is totally pointless except to the blue-hair old lady who might see it.

    A vote for Charles Jay, if he’s able to qualify as an official write-in, will count.

  31. TheOriginalAndy TheOriginalAndy July 17, 2008

    “Trent Hill // Jul 17, 2008 at 5:48 pm

    Andy,

    I suggest you dont write-in Ron Paul. And only write-in Charles Jay if his write-ins are being counted in your state. Make sure the establishment records your anti-establishment vote.”

    Yes, one problem with voting for a write in candidate is that those votes are less likely to be counted than the votes for a candidate who is actually on the ballot.

    I suppose that this is another arguement in favor of voting for Chuck Baldwin.

    Another option is to not vote in the Presidential election, but the establishment can interpet this as apathy rather than as a protest.

  32. G.E. G.E. Post author | July 17, 2008

    Barr’s position is unacceptable.

    Shame on every last one of his delegates in Denver.

  33. TheOriginalAndy TheOriginalAndy July 17, 2008

    “Bill Woolsey // Jul 17, 2008 at 6:09 pm

    Barr has handlers to keep away ‘libertarians?’ Or obnoxious individuals who confront him and try to make a scene?”

    Or people who ask him questions that he doesn’t want to anwser?

  34. Bill Woolsey Bill Woolsey July 17, 2008

    Barr has handlers to keep away “libertarians?” Or obnoxious individuals who confront him and try to make a scene?

    The story told here suggests someone very rude. The conversation begins… “your position in unnacceptable?” I’m sure that there are some libertarians who like to get into loud arguments with plenty of name calling to boot.
    While I don’t have any handlers, I certainly refuse to participate in such things.

  35. Trent Hill Trent Hill July 17, 2008

    Andy,

    I suggest you dont write-in Ron Paul. And only write-in Charles Jay if his write-ins are being counted in your state. Make sure the establishment records your anti-establishment vote.

  36. svf svf July 17, 2008

    “The world is full of idiots.”

    … and most of them have blogs.

  37. TheOriginalAndy TheOriginalAndy July 17, 2008

    “Trent Hill // Jul 17, 2008 at 3:25 pm

    This is why you vote for Baldwin =)”

    I just may end up voting for Chuck Baldwin. Either that or I’ll do a write in vote for Ron Paul or Charles Jay, or not bother voting in the Presidential election.

  38. sunshinebatman sunshinebatman July 17, 2008

    Hmm, this Marc Victor guy sounds like one of these retards who gets confused by Sean Hannity. Not a reliable source to accurately report the actual words of a conversation.

    Considering this was a libertarian event, the female “handler” was likely there to keep away idiots and stalkers rather than “libertarians” per se.

    Don’t forget Bob Barr’s first Law of the Universe: “The world is full of idiots.”

  39. Trent Hill Trent Hill July 17, 2008

    This is why you vote for Baldwin =)

  40. G.E. G.E. Post author | July 17, 2008

    As soon as Barr said he wanted to use taxpayer dollars to support the stock price of two failing companies and give the Federal Reserve more power over the housing market, I think my threshold for “disappointment” was achieved. I don’t think it’s possible to be further disappointed.

    I hope the Barr delegates are hanging their heads in shame.

  41. G.E. G.E. Post author | July 17, 2008

    Also, I did not report the Root quote in question. I reported the account of events, and made it clear that they were “reported” and “alleged.”

    These Barr backers really do hate freedom.

  42. G.E. G.E. Post author | July 17, 2008

    Slander is a statist non-crime, and a report by a respected blog is not “slander.” IPR is reporting what someone says happened. I know you and the other dwindling Barr backers would prefer if we censored all anti-Barr news, but like I said, the market (which conservative Barr disdains) provides choices: You’re free to view Bob Barr Watch if you’d prefer to never read a negative story about your candidate. We will report positive and negative stories about Barr. No one forces you to read or comment.

  43. George Donnelly George Donnelly July 17, 2008

    svf, I think if Root used the word cockroaches it would have stuck in this mind. The wording sounds very specific.

    What’s more, it’s not third-hand, it’s second-hand.

    Assuming this is true, it’s very disappointing.

  44. svf svf July 17, 2008

    the mere thought of Barr sourrounding himself with “handlers” to protect him from those scary “libertarians” and then “running in the opposite direction” when questioned about his war on drug position is patently absurd.

    circulating thrid-hand hearsay filtered through an author with a very clear anti-Barr conspiracy-minded bias may or may not constitue slander.

    “Treg admits he didn’t tape record the event and was recounting the approximate words of Root…” etc. etc.

    “…go nuke the heck out of those Iranian cockroaches. Blow ‘em all up… just nuke the place for a thousand years.” ” … right, sure…

    but whatever, it’s your site. have fun with it.

  45. G.E. G.E. Post author | July 17, 2008

    How is this slander? (A statist non-crime, anyway).

    If you’d like to accuse Classically Liberal, a well-respected blog, of lying, then take the case up with them.

    Again, you’re free to view TPW for the Viguerie-filtered news.

  46. svf svf July 17, 2008

    There you go, much better!

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