The Libertarian Party speaks out against third-party unity

LP spokesman Andrew Davis has this to say in opposition to Campaign for Liberty’s four-point libertarian agenda:

Perhaps it is the acrimonious environment of a two-party system, or simply a “strength in numbers” struggle that makes strange bedfellows among third-party candidates in today’s politics. Whatever the cause, third-party candidates often reach out to others for support and assistance in the mutual struggle against the tyranny of the duopoly. Be it in pooling resources, or simply an extra hand in meeting ballot access requirements: Third-parties are a band of political outcasts struggling for a right to compete for the votes of American people, the same as Republicans and Democrats.

This semblance of unity, of overcoming political differences in the pursuit of greater competition in elections, is certainly something to appreciate and encourage. Third-parties alike face the monstrosities of corrupt ballot access requirements in their attempt to place candidates on the ballot, and it is only natural for de facto alliances to spring up in this pursuit.

In many cases, these political competitors can even find common ground in their political positions, such was the case with the recent Libertarian, Green, Constitution, and independent party endorsements of a quartet of issues compiled by Republican Congressman Ron Paul. Such a consensus is rare in partisan politics, and the willingness of these candidates to come together represents a refreshing change of pace from the refusal of Republican and Democrats to address the issues that Americans face.

Though a positive step in politics, there is a hidden danger in attributing too much worth to this showing of solidarity among political parties that differ so greatly. An oppressive two-party system presents a clear need for reform and change, but a mutual agreement on issues between political parties is not necessarily indicative of an overall similarity or compromise between parties.

There are very real, and very diametric differences between the Libertarian Party and all of its other political competitors. Agree as they may on issues like civil liberties, war and economic reform, the philosophy of each political party is distinct and unbending. While the Libertarian Party certainly claims no absolute monarchy on all the avenues to freedom, we believe our platform and positions are most consistent with that of the true meaning of liberty in the United States.

This is the philosophy of liberty.

To dismiss this philosophy in the pursuit of consensus is a dangerous trend that third parties must avoid at all costs. To do so, for whatever reason, is to abandon the very core identity of the political party. Just as the soul is the essence of a person, the political philosophy of a political party is the foundation on which its platform is built. While the platforms of different political parties may overlap on some issues, the quintessential philosophy of each is wholly unique.

The maintenance of this philosophy is more important than any political coalition or victory. For without our philosophy, any victory will be hollow, and any coalition empty of meaning.

For every question, there is an answer, and individuals may arrive at this conclusion through many different means; some right and some wrong.

Libertarians may agree with Greens on the need for a foreign policy based on nonaggression, but it is for very different reasons. And Libertarians may agree with independents on the need for ending welfare reform, but again, for very different reasons.

The appeal of banding together with other third-parties may seem appealing on the surface, but such a compromise of the very basic values of the party would be no better than Republicans or Democrats and the compromises they make.

Only in the Libertarian Party is the principle of individual sovereignty, limited government and lower taxation the core philosophy of our beliefs. While we may share some issues with other political parties, we do not share our philosophy. It is ours, and ours alone.

Working with other parties on electoral reform and eliminating anti-democratic ballot access laws is advantageous for all involved; however, at the end of the day, we are still competitors vying for individual votes of Americans. A vote cast for any other political party than the Libertarian Party is a vote the Libertarian Party will not receive, no matter how well intentioned.

The power of a third-party does not lie in coalition building—at least for the true purpose of a political party. By the very nature of politics, political parties are competitors, regardless of ideological congruity or cooperation. Greens, Constitutionalists, Independents, Republicans and Democrats are all competing for the same votes as Libertarians. Coalitions may be beneficial for specific goals, such as electoral reform, or may make for good publicity; however, in the end, the restoration of the Constitution in the United States will come from a single third-party’s rise in prominence that keeps the true philosophy of liberty at heart.

The liberty movement needs a single leader, not a nebulous consortium of strange bedfellows.

Trading the tyranny of a major party for the tyranny of a minor party is no desirable end. Only in a libertarian society will people be truly free, and only through the Libertarian Party with its libertarian principles will this society exist. No other political party has the platform or philosophy that would bring it about.

To assume that somehow a coalition of third parties will effect this change is to somehow assume all other third parties will abandon their own philosophies in accepting ours.

If we are not willing, then why do we assume they will?

Agreeing on a handful of issues is far from agreeing on the same basic philosophy of freedom in the United States, and it is only the philosophy of freedom that is truly important. It defines us, and will serve as a template for freedom as it has served in framing the Constitution.

There is only one party dedicated to the principles of the Enlightenment, and those principles that founded the American society: the Libertarian Party. Only through our candidates will true freedom be restored.

Until the philosophies of the other parties change, we must never accept any substitute for the freedom for which the Libertarian Party calls. Working with other political parties on electoral reform is a great idea, but there can be no substitute or compromise in our pursuit of political reform.

The Libertarian Party can never follow the beat of any drum other than its own.

84 thoughts on “The Libertarian Party speaks out against third-party unity

  1. Thomas L. Knapp

    “The liberty movement needs a single leader, not a nebulous consortium of strange bedfellows.”

    Ah, I see — when Davis refers to “the party of principle,” the principle he’s referring to is the fuhrerprinzip. That explains a lot.

    Funny, though … I don’t remember hearing this kind of nonsense (“The Libertarian Party can never follow the beat of any drum other than its own”) coming out of LPHQ when they were gladhanding at the Conservative Political Action Conference last winter, or when Bob Barr was rubbing elbows with Al Gore earlier this summer. I seem to recall that it was all kum ba ya, we are family, could you please pass the friggin’ marshmallows back then.

  2. G.E. Post author

    Barr thinks HE is the leader… What a joke.

    This has been a scam since day-one. Redpaht, etc., are all in on it.

  3. johnlowell

    Barr is a schmendik and Russ Verney is worse. Holding himself out as “pro-life” yet unwilling to speak to the legitimate question of whether he paid an abortion his ex-wife had sometime back, Barr made enemies of pro-life voters, and now this incredible performance concerning the Ron Paul news conference. The Libertarian Party deserves better than this patzer.

  4. Galileo Galilei

    As long as the government keeps pulling false flag attacks and scaring the crap out of the populace, electing Liberty orientated candidates is virtually impossible.

  5. Galileo Galilei

    Another reason to buy into the 3rd party alliance and the Ron Paul plan is to expose other third party people to the LP philosphy, who may be fertile ground for new recruits.

    If you really believe in your philosophy.

  6. Thomas M. Sipos

    Some “libertarians” seem less interested in advancing liberty, than in owning liberty.

    They want to be the bosses of liberty. They want to own an exclusive trademark, not only on Libertarian Party, but on liberty, freedom, and every other word they like.

    These people would rather see liberty fail, than to not be the ones to lead and own the liberty movement.

    Reality check: The LP is just another collection of mortal, fallible, human beings. Neither its officers, nor its candidates, nor its members walk on water or perform miracles.

    Some of the best people I’ve met are LP members. Some other LP members are worse than your typical Demopublican.

  7. DianneInVa

    What a sad, sad state of affairs. I certainly hope that the majority of LP members a appauled.

    Bob Barr and “his” statements are just awful.

    *SIGH* indeed.

  8. darolew

    Y’know, the argument would be more convincing if they LP actually was sticking to its supposed philosophy — libertarianism. But they’re not. The LP has neither philosophy nor alliance. Worthless.

    Besides, the argument that making alliances on shared concerns somehow damages underlying philosophy is a weak one.

  9. Hugh Jass

    With the Barr campaign’s recent commitment to “single leadership”, I don’t see any reason why Barr doesn’t quit the Libertarian Party and run as the American Nazi Party’s candidate.

    Also, it seems that one can praise Jesse Helms, Al Gore, and George Bush and be a Libertarian, but praising Chuck Baldwin, Ralph Nader, and Cynthia McKinney is verboten to Libertarians.

  10. VTV

    “Some “libertarians” seem less interested in advancing liberty, than in owning liberty.

    They want to be the bosses of liberty. They want to own an exclusive trademark, not only on Libertarian Party, but on liberty, freedom, and every other word they like.

    These people would rather see liberty fail, than to not be the ones to lead and own the liberty movement.

    Reality check: The LP is just another collection of mortal, fallible, human beings. Neither its officers, nor its candidates, nor its members walk on water or perform miracles.

    Some of the best people I’ve met are LP members. Some other LP members are worse than your typical Demopublican.”

    I have seen this myself.

  11. Gene Trosper

    Some “libertarians” seem less interested in advancing liberty, than in owning liberty.

    They want to be the bosses of liberty. They want to own an exclusive trademark, not only on Libertarian Party, but on liberty, freedom, and every other word they like.

    These people would rather see liberty fail, than to not be the ones to lead and own the liberty movement.

    FINALLY! Something Mr. Sipos has posted that I can whole heartedly agree with.

    I call it being the “big fish in a small pond”. For many, involvement in the LP is an ego-driven thing. It gives them a feeling of superiority and power… something they probably were in short supply on before joining the LP.

  12. starchild

    Good responses from Thomas Sipos (“Some ‘libertarians’ seem less interested in advancing liberty, than in owning liberty…”)…

    …Tom Knapp [“I don’t remember hearing this kind of nonsense (”The Libertarian Party can never follow the beat of any drum other than its own”) coming out of LPHQ when they were gladhanding at the Conservative Political Action Conference last winter, or when Bob Barr was rubbing elbows with Al Gore earlier this summer. I seem to recall that it was all kum ba ya, we are family, could you please pass the friggin’ marshmallows back then.]…

    …and Hugh Jass (“Also, it seems that one can praise Jesse Helms, Al Gore, and George Bush and be a Libertarian, but praising Chuck Baldwin, Ralph Nader, and Cynthia McKinney is verboten to Libertarians.”)

    I’ll just add that working with other alternative parties, and with libertarian-leaning cartel dissidents like Rep. Ron Paul to promote ideas we already agree with, does not involve any “substitute or compromise.” What Davis is saying here appears to be an attack on a straw man which bears little relation to Rep. Paul’s efforts to create a united alternative voice around areas of agreement, and raise the public profile of alternative candidates in general.

  13. G.E. Post author

    As Anthony Gregory points out, notice that it’s the anarchists who are most interested in alliance. The libertines and the moderate-statists — with some exceptions — want nothing to do with “others.”

  14. darolew

    “Jeepers creepers….I need a drink…”

    Keep it legal, Mike. Wouldn’t want to upset the State, now would you? =P

  15. AnthonyD

    Everyone should notice how the doubletalking anarchists will excoriate Barr and the moderates for supposedly compromising libertarian principles, then are jumpin’ jack flash ready to form an “alliance” with a marxist communist, a theocratic fascist, and a couple of personality cults.

  16. sunshinebatman

    Hopefully Verney’s power play politics won’t permanently compromise Barr’s ability to work in coalitions, something he has been very adept at.

  17. G.E. Post author

    Anthony D = Paid shill for Barr. They’re coming out of the woodwork, even as a clear majority of libertarians want the bum tossed off the ballot and into the garbage like the innocent baby he paid to have murdered.

  18. AnthonyD

    G.E.

    Clear majority of libertarians want [Barr] tossed off the ballot. The silly little online petition I saw had a few less than 600 signatures. I know the LP is small, but it aint that small.

    I hope those 600 malecontents leave the party post haste. They clearly dont want to be around a party moving forward, and we dont want them anyway.

  19. G.E. Post author

    Anthony D: Who are you? Do you have any history within the party? Does anyone know who you are? Are you on Barr’s payroll?

  20. Spence

    “It is ours, and ours alone.”

    All you really need to do to read before you gain a sense of the evil that is truly at work here. THAT is probably the equivalent of an ideological copyright. How can you even defend something that does not exist?

    The LP does not own the idea of freedom any more than I do. It is fucking ingrained in everyone. I’d like to take this a step further and challenge everyone to really think about how they define freedom.

    This is why people don’t join our movement, cause no matter who you replace Andrew Davis with, you’ll still get another empty suit, (maybe this time a died-in-the-wool anarcho-capitalist) who will say they are right and that everyone else is wrong. Correction. There’s a reason for the word ideology. It is our CONCEPTION of what would work.

    A lot of people here make the same mistake that this foolish spokesman has made.

  21. sunshinebatman

    Don’t forget THE COMFY CHAIR, nutbag. LOLz.

    G.E. // Sep 11, 2008 at 11:30 pm

    Anthony D: Who are you? Do you have any history within the party? Does anyone know who you are? Are you on Barr’s payroll?

  22. AnthonyD

    G.E.,

    On several occasions, I tried to have a history within the party. However, the stench of the purists (they tend to not shower), and their idiotic, off-putting behavior was too much for me to bear. So, for many years I have simply been a monthly donor.

    Hopefully, the nomination of Barr will chase those wingnuts out of the party, and I can more fully participate in a party of daily shower-takers.

  23. G.E. Post author

    Huh?

    sunshinebatman is another Barr campaign creation. No one knows who he is. He has no record of activism, etc.

    The few Barr supporters who were “real people” — like Gene Trosper — have long abandoned this sham of a campaign. The only people left supporting it are aliases for Barr campaign officials.

    If I’m wrong, prove it.

  24. G.E. Post author

    Anthony D – What state are you from? Where have you done anything? How can we verify your identity? You came out of nowhere to support Barr here. Don’t think anyone’s fooled.

  25. G.E. Post author

    I’m just asking: Can’t one real libertarian vouch for you? Or are you just an Internet poseur?

  26. sunshinebatman

    Nutbag – “Real libertarians” recognize the value of privacy from bolshevik Internet stalkers. Suffice to say, I am someone who has been libertarian my entire adult life, registered independent, occasionally paid LP dues and have always (thrice) voted LP for President. I’ve never worked for Barr, his campaign, or the LP/LNC.

    PS. “GE rapes babies. Prove me wrong.”

  27. darolew

    I’m not sure I buy into all remaining Barr supporters being paid shills (or “subhuman” for that matter). However, I would question their judgment and/or integrity.

    “Everyone should notice how the doubletalking anarchists will excoriate Barr and the moderates for supposedly compromising libertarian principles, then are jumpin’ jack flash ready to form an “alliance” with a marxist communist, a theocratic fascist, and a couple of personality cults.”

    I’m not an anarchist, but since Bob Barr is running as a Libertarian candidate, I don’t think it’s unreasonable for him to support libertarianism. But Barr supports conservatism, he proclaims it all the time. The two are not the same. The other candidates, McKinney, Nader, and Baldwin, are not Libertarians, and should not be held to the same standards. Nothing wrong with making alliances with them where they might be advantageous.

    “I’m just asking: Can’t one real libertarian vouch for you [AnthonyD]? Or are you just an Internet poseur?”

    While I’m no longer a Barr supporter, I’m not sure how valid this line of questioning is for those who still are. If you asked me the same question, I doubt I could provide a satisfactory answer. Just because people aren’t established libertarians doesn’t make their opinions automatically invalid…

  28. G.E. Post author

    You people are not real Libertarians but paid shills. If you weren’t, you could say, “My name is J.D. Seagraves. I write for Amateur Economists magazine and do stock analysis for wealthpire.com — you can check me out. I gave a seconding speech for Mary Ruwart. I was a congressional district coordinator and office manager for Ron Paul, and fundraising director for Scotty Boman. Until today, I was the vice-chairman of my local LP. Tom Knapp, Chuck Moulton, and Neil Stephenson (VTV), all of whom posted in this thread, have met me in real life and know that I am a real person.”

    But you can’t. Because you are secret aliases for the Barr campaign.

    Why is it only the Barr people hide behind aliases that no one knows the true identity behind?

    Can I prove that I don’t rape babies? No, but I can offer a preponderance of evidence that I don’t by showing you that I am a real person who real people have met and not a cowardly shill hiding behind a screen name.

  29. G.E. Post author

    darolew – Doesn’t make their opinions invalid. But it does cast doubt on whether they are “real” people or not.

  30. G.E. Post author

    also sunshillbarrman – Real libertarians understand that libertarianism deals with THE STATE. I’m not initiating force in asking you to prove you are not actually Sean Haugh or Shane Cory or some other prostitute for the Barr campaign. I’m giving you an opportunity to prove me wrong. Find one other libertarian who knows who you are.

  31. G.E. Post author

    als0, darolew – You have been posting on IPR about things OTHER THAN Bob Barr, unlike these other phonies.

  32. mscrib

    G.E.,

    I can tell you that I’ve been a party member exponentially longer and have donated far more time and money to the LP than you. Keep the “paid shill” crap inside your head.

    And it’s funny that you’re now the expert on “real libertarians” given that you were a socialist less than two years ago. Give me a break…

  33. Spence

    Once G.E. has his mind up about you, he won’t care what information you could possibly provide. The simple circumstance of he asking for proof over the internet raises all kinds of validity issues. He’s a troll with power. The best you guys could do would be is to ignore him and support the few BALANCED writers of this site. (Very few.)

  34. sunshinebatman

    Do you mean balanced reporters, or just mentally balanced? You’re being too ambiguous here.

  35. G.E. Post author

    mscrib – You weren’t necessarily counted among the people I was talking about, but whatever. Socialist less than two years ago? Really? I joined the LP in 2006. I became a philosophical libertarian in late 2004. How is that “two years” ago?

    Every single person who continues to support Barr on IPR is someone I don’t know. I find those odds highly improbable. Not all of you are paid shills — some are just cowards.

  36. Spence

    You want the truth, you fuck? I’m too young to vote. I’m missing the fucking election this year by two fucking months. So no, of course, I’m not registered or anything like that, fool. Of course, that doesn’t make a goddamn difference to you. It’s just a ingenious ploy that you’ll eagerly deny. See? Not that you EVER needed to know that. But unless you are so deaf to logic, (which you have proven time and time again, by the way) maybe then you could see why I’m not registered, or “real” as you describe it.

    By the way, your “challenge” should insult any real libertarians, solely cause you base philosophy on party affiliation. That shows how two-faced you really are. Get that? All the more likely you wouldn’t believe me if I were registered. There is no pleasing you, and really, three shouldn’t have to be. No one else should have to cater to you because you are too fucked up to comprehend basic libertarian principles such as voluntaryism and freedom of opinion.

  37. G.E. Post author

    Okay, sonny, settle down.

    I’ve been confusing your ignorance for stupidity. I apologize. We can put it in context now.

    Party affiliation? What? I could care less. I’m a Ron Paul man and I’m voting for Nader.

    Voluntaryism? What? Who forced you to do anything? I am a voluntaryist. Who is trying to force you to have an opinion?

    So you’re a 17-year-old kid questioning my integrity and libertarianism? Ooooooookay.

  38. G.E. Post author

    Who said anything about registration? You are warped, young Spence. Chill out. So you’re not on the payroll — Barr wouldn’t violate any statist child-labor laws, I’m sure. Ease off the Ritalin (or increase your dose?). It’ll be okay.

  39. mscrib

    I think it’s possible that some people commenting on this site are directly affiliated with the Barr campaign (it’s not like we’ve never seen this kind of thing before from other campaigns), but I do think it’s incredibly unlikely that most pro-Barr people are on the campaign payroll.

    I post anonymously because I don’t like being Googled by my employer/anyone else. I don’t think I’m alone here, either. It’s bad enough that Google brings up my campaign contributions on the first page when you type in my name. I’m definitely not looking for my employer to read my semi-coherent ramblings on IPR.

  40. darolew

    Wait, so being 17-years-old makes one immune to G.E.’s wrath? Maybe I should get in on this racket…

  41. G.E. Post author

    I post anonymously because I don’t like being Googled by my employer/anyone else.

    Perfectly understandable. That’s why I post under “G.E.” But you and everyone else who cares knows who I am. And I was not accusing you of anything, other than bad judgment (I said “all Barr supporters ” but I wasn’t aware that you were one) because you’ve been posting here a while and you talk about other things besides defending Barr. Some of your peers, however, are either new or have been shilling for Barr since Day 1.

    darolew – Are we enemies? I can’t keep the three “dar” people differentiated. I thought I only didn’t like the socialist, and that’s not you. So our animosity is one-way.

  42. darolew

    “darolew – Are we enemies? I can’t keep the three “dar” people differentiated. I thought I only didn’t like the socialist, and that’s not you. So our animosity is one-way.”

    Oh, I’m glad you’ve forgotten about the times we’ve bickered. That was mostly Barr-related stuff from before Snubgate anyway, I guess. =P

  43. G.E. Post author

    Yeah, you see… I was right. About Barr and about Redpath. And now people are beginning to see that.

  44. Spence

    It doesn’t make you immune. It makes you more susceptible to ad-hominem attacks- something G.E. makes a living off of.

    Perhaps I could have maintained a bit of composure, I know when it’s right to do that, contrary to what he probably believes, and trust me, it doesn’t make a difference with this guy. Therefore, I don’t believe it very substantive revealing this or not. But the fact of the matter is that G.E. is the one who is warped, and will increasingly alter facts and coat lies under the pretense that he is always right.

    Having said that, making things easy for him should be the least popular idea anyone gets. Even now, he hides behind the false concept that only Paul or Barr can be right with this latest scandal, and that anyone who disagrees is on Barr’s payroll. Typical slander from an extremist who hasn’t figured out when to apply logic or not. There is always another stand.

    In this case, both Paul and Barr are wrong, but under situations they created for themselves, and Barr deserves it because he thought he would be springing this false scenario on Paul. It still amazes me that so many people here haven’t realized that yet.

  45. G.E. Post author

    Ad hominem attacks? You called me a “fuck.” Maybe you really are on Barr’s payroll… Are you really Shane Cory?

    I make my living analyzing financial securities. The reports I write contain very few attacks. Actually, zero. So you’re wrong, there.

    If people such as sunshinebatman are real libertarians who’ve ever done anything within the LP or the greater libertarian movement, then let them prove it. If they’re still stuck in the socialist concentration camps known as public schools, then that’s a valid excuse for a lack of past activism. Fine. But you can’t hide behind a screen name, come here and EXCLUSIVELY defend Barr when virtually everyone else has abandoned him and not be suspect. You also don’t get away with completely irrational logic like saying I’m anti-voluntaryist because I asked you to prove your identity. You need to do more reading.

  46. mscrib

    Technically, I’m a Barr supporter, but I think it’s more correct to say that I generally support the LP presidential candidate in the election. Honestly, I really only care that Barr is relatively libertarian (you have to admit he is very, very articulate on most civil liberties issues) and that he has the name recognition to (hopefully) secure ballot access and publicity for down-ticket LP candidates in the future. I still am not convinced that Barr is doing more harm than good.

  47. Spence

    You don’t seem to get the point at all. I’m surprised. You’re so much “older than me”, yet your experience seems to count for nil. “Fuck” sure seemed to get your attention, didn’t though? But I think perhaps you should differentiate real ad-hominem attacks from profanity in the future if you are to ever succeed.

    Secondly, if I must, I will take note of each and every suspected “bias incident” or “factual error” you report from here on out. Just simple numbers. Let’s see what we can find, what do you say? Don’t jump the gun, yet.

    Finally, by rehashing my words in order to hide your complete confusion of very simplistic libertarian terms, you still fail to understand voluntaryists. It is their right to refuse your offer, and your right to believe that he is a shill no matter what the facts, but objectively, it matters not. You fail to understand this time and time again. I’m not surprised. I would ask anyone that has actual seniority over you to recommend you a reading list, but you’d probably come up with some slam against their credibility then too, so no need to drag other people through the mud for your shortcomings. Please, go back to libertarianism 101.

  48. lpcowboy

    Getting back to the underlying issue, all of the parties listed are benificial to libertarians in that they support decentralization.

    While the greens support taxation, they prefer to do it at the local level, so a “free town project” would achieve most libertarian goals for the price of a U-Haul.

    Unlike the legacy parties, Greens, Libertarians, Constitutionalists, and Nader supporters can peacefully co-exist through de-centralization.

  49. Spence

    The smaller socialist exercises like those are, the more they are similar to private companies. So naturally, the greatest amount of decentralization possible helps everyone.

  50. FormerLPMember

    The Philosophy OF Liberty
    “You have a right to seek leaders for yourself, but you have no right to impose rulers on others. No matter how officials are selected, they are only human beings and they have no rights or claims that are higher than those of any other human beings. Regardless of the imaginative labels for their behavior or the numbers of people encouraging them, officials have no right to murder, to enslave, or to steal. You cannot give them any rights that you do not have yourself.” JONATHAN GULLIBLE

  51. G.E. Post author

    Spence… Come on, now. You’re telling me to “go back to Libertarianism 101?” Err… Okay.

    No one has pointed out any factual errors that I’ve yet to change. You guys have a wet dream that Bob Barr was “included” in the C4L release, which specifically did not name him. Have you been following the news? Jesus!

  52. amyb31416

    Wow, lots of insanity here. I saw that my “silly little petition” was smeared by a trolly-type. And that’s okay. Here’s who I am and why I’m so irked about what Barr did:

    Registered Republican, but only because of Ron Paul. Former independent, raised by a neocon, disgusted with politics so ignored it for years scientist. Loved Paul’s principled record even though I disagree on a few things, discovered libertarianism because of him, found that I am, indeed, a libertarian but didn’t know it.

    Fast-forward to Barr’s nomination: lousy record on rights, “former” neocon, giddy about the war, etc. but allegedly changed his ways. Didn’t trust that so much, but was convinced that voting for him was the right thing in order for the the LP to gain future ballot access. And was comfortable doing so, even though I would have a hard time voting Barr if he did stand a chance at the election. Many other RP supporters felt the same way, vote for him, it’s good for the LP, especially us agnostic/atheist supporters who couldn’t stomach the CP’s platform despite the fact that we like Baldwin as a person.

    So, now Barr and his campaign pulls a truly shitty stunt that enrages those loyal to Paul and follows it up with some insane myspace blog and several emails calling us a cult of personality.

    Could Barr and his campaign possibly be any more inept at pulling people together? It’s so ridiculous that my skeptical self is starting to believe that Barr is a neocon plant intended to divide as the many conspiracy theorists are convinced of.

    So Barr single-handedly destroyed the LP’s best chance at getting some really good numbers and getting future ballot access. He obviously does not care about the LP, and by that extension, freedom for the American people.

    That is why I started my “silly little petition.” If Ruwart were on the ballot, I’d be a card-carrying member campaigning for her. And this piece of garbage, Barr, screws it all up. The guy who convinced me to vote for Barr is apologizing now and rethinking his LP membership.

    This is why I call for his removal. I hope it gives some perspective.

  53. Doob

    The purpose of the press conference was only to tell the American people that they don’t have to vote for Dems or Reps. Period. RP was using his new-found press interest to tell as many people as possible to look at third parties and don’t vote blindly. Geez, the man wasn’t doing anything cynical or underhanded, just trying to use the otherwise stupid media to make a point.

    Now, they’ll look and see that Barr is as big an ass as any power-hungry Republican, hurting our chances of getting out of this freaking two-party stranglehold. It’s sickening; he’s taken us ten steps BACK. Our only hope now is to keep chugging away here, and try to get local candidates elected.

    Barr & his staff are the worst kind of enemy. Running on our ticket and imploding the party from the inside. Aaaack!

    The freaking neo-con doesn’t deserve to have L anywhere near his name.

  54. Steve LaBianca

    Only in the Libertarian Party is the principle of individual sovereignty, limited government and lower taxation the core philosophy of our beliefs.

    Andrew, HOW and WHEN is limited, that is limited government, limited enough? How low is “lower taxation” low enough?

    This is the newspeak of libertarianism as dictated by the “direction” philosophical “principles” of the allegedly “boldly” new Libertarian Party platform.

    Some one explain to me how “lower” taxes is the “core philosophy” of libertarianism. Oops sorry, Andrew Davis said “core philosophy of our beliefs” (emphasis added). I thought that non-coercion was the core of libertarian beliefs!
    Lower taxes still allows for coercion! Core beliefs my A*S! Yep, core beliefs of the Reform Caucus it is!

    I can only come to the conclusion that by “our” beliefs, he means the beliefs of the Reform Caucus. These are certainly not “my” beliefs! So, has the Reform Caucus effectively replaced the Libertarian Party now? Have the “reformers” effectively “purged” if not in fact, but in rhetoric, the radicals?

    So, if principle is so important now, why did the supporters of Barr and W.A.R. effectively throw principle out the window by nominating Barr and W.A.R.? Oh right, I forgot. the new “boldly libertarian” platform NEWSPEAK took care of that already. Simply change the principles, and everything hangs together now.

    How clever of the reformers . . . they’d thought of everything hadn’t they.

  55. Steve LaBianca

    Lest anyone think I am being too harsh on the Reform Caucus, just ask Brian Holtz (a major Reformer!) of his opinion on “zero aggression” or coercion, and “minimizing coercion” (lower taxation is another way of stating “minimal coercion”). This whole statement by Andrew Davis has Reform Caucus written all over it.

  56. Steve LaBianca

    I hope that those of you who have observed the Barr/W.A.R. campaign, and their supporters (i.e. apologists) in their every action and verbiage, that this latest (in a line of many such ones) debacle of the LP “top of the ticket” campaign, is rightfully laid at the doorstep of the LP Reform Caucus.

    Yes folks, the Reform Caucus, as Angela Keaton has so succinctly pointed out, has control of the reigns of the LP. The presidential campaign, the LNC, the “bold new” platform all are brainchildren of the Reform Caucus. The Reform Caucus should be on the hook to “perform” as Angela has described it, and we can already see the widening cracks of their “performance”.

    Thankfully, it won’t be too much longer before we can take our “Party of Principle” back.

  57. G.E. Post author

    The LP is clearly unfit to continue in its current form. The DeFraud Caucus has ruined it to the point where there’s no one on the LNC willing to listen to the overwhelming demand that Barr’s removal be put to a vote.

    There are at least three very distinct camps within the LP: 1) The criminals/Reformers, 2) The anarchist/non-criminal alliance, 3) The libertine statists (Phillies supporters and Outrights). Although #2 and #3 are often united against #1, the libertine statists would just as surely unite with the criminal-reformers if the anarchists were in power. They are currently applauding Bob Barr over his snubbing of Ron Paul, who, as a real libertarian and not a lifestyle welfarist, they hate.

    There’s no candidate, certainly not the great Mary Ruwart, who could unite these factions. The LP has no choice but to purge itself and be reborn.

  58. AnthonyD

    G.E.

    If you want to leave the LP, then leave, for pete’s sake. You dont get to close down the party as well. We will cotinue without you.

  59. amyb31416

    I had some “correspondence” with Andrew Davis today, the guy that represents the face of the LP via his position as “Director of Communications.”

    My impression of him:

    1. At most, 23 years old.
    2. Doesn’t give a shit.
    3. Has a reasonable grasp on the lolcatz dialect.

    How is it that this guy has a high-level position in the LP?

    If the LP makes an effort to purge the neocons and the apathetic, I’m on board. My correspondence with the LP today gave me the opposite impression.

  60. G.E. Post author

    He’s an 07 college grad who was an anti-gay activist at school. And a complete and total joke, yes.

  61. BrianHoltz

    Steve LaBianca is not being “harsh”, but rather merely ignorant. The distinction he cannot bring himself to face is that between 1) rigidly abstaining from all possibility of committing force initiation and 2) wanting society to enjoy the lowest possible net incidence of force initiation. I explained it to him at http://more.libertarianintelligence.com/2008/04/non-aggression-is-not-so-simple.html, but he’d rather just make stuff up about the Reform Caucus than try to grasp a point that takes more than a bumper sticker to explain.

    It’s simply ignorant to say that the Barr campaign is a “brainchild of the Reform Caucus”. Of the few Reform Caucus leaders whose presidential preference I know, more (including me) preferred Root than Barr. (I also preferred Phillies to Barr, and voted for Phillies in the California primary, at the California convention, and on the first ballot in Denver. I only voted for Barr on the last ballot, over an anarchist who said she was “fully attuned to the Libertarian philosophy” and said she will “really explain to the American people what we truly are all about”. We all know what that explanation turned out to be.) Reform Caucus meetings in Denver drew no more than ten people. The Reform Caucus in Denver put zero effort into the presidential race and maintained strict neutrality; all our effort went into Platform and SoP reform. We lost on SoP because delegates are instinctively suspicious of treating the actual rules as more binding that what they thought the rules were. We won on Platform because the delegates — who generally don’t care about caucuses and mostly don’t know they exist — wanted a repaired Platform that could be adopted in one day, and we on PlatCom had worked hard to offer one to them.

    It’s simply ignorant to say that “the Reform Caucus has control of the reigns of the LP”. The Reform Caucus is in fact pretty much in hibernation. Three of the Reform Caucus leadership ran for party office in Denver, and all three lost. Only two voting members of the LNC are members of the Reform Caucus: one I had no idea was a member and only joined a few weeks before Denver, and the other is not in the caucus leadership and has only posted to our forum on a single day a year and a half ago. By contrast, five members of LNC — Ruwart, Wrights, Keaton, Hinkle, Hawkridge — are prominent players in the Radical Caucus and/or Restore04. Lark is also a nominal Radical Caucus member and is endorsed by them, but I’ve never heard of him being active on their forum.

    These are the facts. We now return you to your regularly-scheduled name-calling against the “Retard”/”Defraud” Caucus, already in progress.

  62. BrianHoltz

    It’s fascinating that Mary Ruwart is all about love and healing, and yet for her campaign she surrounded herself with people like LaBianca and Seagraves (who wants to name-call us the “Defraud Caucus” while insisting we use his pseudonym G.E. so that his venom doesn’t hurt his freelance writing career). Is there anyone so prominent in the LP (one a Ruwart nominator on-stage in Denver, the other an LNC alternate) who spews more vicious hateful personal venom on the libertarian blogs than these two? While Mary is healing our world, she might want to also heal some of her apostles.

    (Jason, if you censor this comment, then at least have the decency to also edit away the name-calling you’ve indulged in above.)

  63. G.E. Post author

    I’ve never censored a comment in the history of IPR. Your insinuation that that might happen is a smear befitting your status with the “Reform” Caucus.

    (By the way, the “DeFraud” Caucus I refer to is NOT = the Reform Caucus, but the gang of crooks who run the LNC who have nothing to do with Seth Cohn and George Phillies, who are Reformers. And I do not like the term “retard” at all, finding if very offensive).

    Regardless, I’m through. You’ve fought hard and won, Brian. And you, though not all who have worked towards your aim, have played fair to the best of my knowledge. So congrats. I’m out of the LP. I resigned my office within my local and I no longer care what happens to the LP. Don’t drag me into this B.S. anymore, please.

  64. G.E. Post author

    Above “criminals/reformers” is to be read as to distinct groups who work together; not that all “Reformers” are criminals. But I give up.

  65. G.E. Post author

    while insisting we use his pseudonym G.E. so that his venom doesn’t hurt his freelance writing career)

    I’ve never “insisted” that at all, but merely requested. But that’s a fair point and I’ve never thought about it until today. I’m certainly not the only one who uses a pseudonym or an incomplete name for that very reason. But I can see how it’s “unfair” to trash someone in their real name when I’m not willing to use mine while doing it (even if it’s fairly easy to discover what my name is).

    So I’m going to have to think about how best to go forward in an ethical manner, here.

  66. Spence

    The Reform Caucus had an admirable goal, but once again, shitty execution. Perhaps it is just the curse of the LP, but reforming something doesn’t mean you simply make your platform lighter and goals less ambitious. That’s exactly what we have now- a botched effort that in no way exemplifies reform the same way that corporatism is in no way synonymous with capitalism.

  67. BrianHoltz

    G.E., I’ll take your word for it that you didn’t mean the Reform Caucus when you wrote “Defraud Caucus”. I’ll also have to take your word for it that there was never any chance of you not editing your name out of my comment due to your stated concerns for your anonymity, but I just don’t know you well enough to have known that for myself.

    Full disclosure: I did try one tiny little dirty trick in Denver, but as far as I can tell nobody ever noticed, and so it will have to remain an inside joke for the time being.

  68. G.E. Post author

    “DeFraud” is indeed a play on “Retard” (an ugly term some people use to describe the Reform Caucus), and there is a lot of overlap between what I consider to be the unprincipled clique and the Reform Caucus — but it’s not universal, as stated above.

  69. Trent Hill

    GE,

    Want to hear something REALLY bad? I sympathize with Holtz’s idea that “zero aggression” is not possible and that our goal should be “minimal aggression”!

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