Libertarian Party founder David Nolan: ‘What happened to the Libertarian Party’

Podcast from LewRockwell.com

Little Alex in Wonderland provides the following summary:

He points out the fact that if the LP is going to be nothing more than what the Republican Party should be, there’s no use for it — as it can’t get past unelectability.

Third Parties make statements when they take from the despots — radical statements that draw voters from the Corporate War Party. Three prime examples of this are Pat Buchanan and Ross Perot in ‘92 and Ralph Nader in 2000.

Anarcho-capitalism and minarchism are much more radical than these three, but share views of these three which coincide with public opinion: non-intervention, anti-corporate welfare, and basic principles against fraudulent government.

Where the LP is falling short of public opinion is that they’re not emphasizing a belief prevalent in America today: smaller government. The LP should be tapping into this will with an extreme distaste for the State a la Murray Rothbard and Lew Rockwell. If the LP is going to be the party of people forming their society, instead of government coercing their morality on us, the LP must display trust in mankind — that authority is the root of all evil.

Even the pro-life paleocons can feel this as these people do not want the gov’t in their churches, just as classical liberal libertarians don’t want it in our bedrooms. Here’s a deal: It’s been a long time since I’ve laughed at your faith, paleocons. Stop calling me a hedonist and we can fight for liberty.

This country screamed for change by swapping one charismatic authoritarian for another and will always do so until a libertarian steps to the plate and believes in people over Newspeak.

As the Russian revolutionary anarcho-collectivist, Mikhail Bakunin, famously put it:

“Take the most radical revolutionary and place him on the throne of all of Russias or give him dictatorial power, and before a year has past, he’ll become worse than the czar himself.”

53 thoughts on “Libertarian Party founder David Nolan: ‘What happened to the Libertarian Party’

  1. Libertarian Joseph

    Nolan is right. but why the collectivist mentality? He thinks libertarians should all move lockstep with eachother apparently. Well, LP failed this year, so ALL libertarians should leave the party and do what Nolan wants. It’s a bit of a stastist mentality. There’s obviously a demand for it, albeit it is a small demand… but we can blame that on outreach.

  2. paulie cannoli Post author

    Since you sorta asked; my current psychotropic substance mix

    Caffeine –

    Black tea

    Green tea (several cups each)

    Stay Awake caffeine tablets (2 x 200 mg so far this morning)

    Asthma/bronchitis medication –

    Methylprednisolone “z-pac” (steroids for breathing) – prescribed dosage

    Albuterol inhaler – somewhat more than prescribed dosage, I like the stimulant effect, but being somewhat careful.

  3. BrianHoltz

    A parade of Nolan straw men:

    “the idea that we can simply sort of clean things up and get rid of some of the excesses and make things work a little better, the typical reformer position…”

    “if you want to be a reformer and trim away at the edges of the ever-growing goliath in Washington D.C. …”

    “…reformer who wants to slow down the growth of government, wants to cut spending a little bit…”

    Nolan doesn’t dare address the actual Reform Caucus agenda: that the Libertarian Party’s platform and pledge should not require candidates and party members to advocate abolition of all government. Similarly, his anarchist host Lew Rockwell spoke for 10-15 minutes at Ron Paul’s Rally For The Republic and lacked the courage to even hint at abolition of the State. When push comes to shove, so-called “radicals” like Nolan and Rockwell define themselves merely by who they oppose (Barr, conservatives, etc.), rather than by the policy goals they support.

    Aside from citing Barr’s plan for cutting federal spending by allegedly only a few hundred billion dollars, Nolan offered zero specific substantive criticism of the policy content of the Barr campaign. Neither Nolan nor Rockwell bother to mention that Ron Paul’s 2008 presidential campaign was even thinner than Barr’s on spending cuts. Instead, Ron Paul denied that he has ever supported abolition of public schools, bragged about how he has “saved” Social Security, and suggested that leaving Iraq will free up money for domestic social spending.

    Barr can be criticized for not using the Libertarian brand on his web site, but he definitely did use it in his earned media. In the 15 Barr appearances on national TV from mid-July to mid-September that are available on YouTube, Barr used the word “Libertarian” 16 times, but “conservative” only twice. His interviewers used the word “Libertarian” 49 times, and “conservative” only once. This data excludes a lengthy C-SPAN interview, where Barr said “Libertarian” 45 times and “conservative” 8 times.

  4. kiddleddee

    Brian reminds us: “Barr can be criticized for not using the Libertarian brand on his web site, but he definitely did use it in his earned media. In the 15 Barr appearances on national TV from mid-July to mid-September that are available on YouTube, Barr used the word “Libertarian” 16 times, but “conservative” only twice. His interviewers used the word “Libertarian” 49 times, and “conservative” only once. This data excludes a lengthy C-SPAN interview, where Barr said “Libertarian” 45 times and “conservative” 8 times.”

    Actually, that’s part of the problem, Brian. When Barr did use the term “libertarian” he used it to describe “conservative” positions. For instance, his defense of “state’s rights” on gay rights as THE libertarian position and his insistence that DOMA was a piece of libertarian legislation.

    To his credit though, I don’t remember him using the term libertarian to describe his support for interference in the economies and politics of Latin American nations, on to describe his support for the federal government “doing something” to bail out the financial crisis, or his support for economic sanctions against Iran or his opposition to legalizing drugs.

    He did use terms like “Smaller government, Fewer taxes and More freedom” but, I’m pretty sure that he never used the term “self-ownership”. No, wait, I’m sorry. “Self ownership” is a RADICAL principle, not one which is a necessary one for “libertarians” to hold.

  5. BrianHoltz

    The Paul/Barr position on marriage is more federalist than it is conservative. My notes indicate that Barr mentioned DOMA only once in all the media appearances I’ve analyzed so far. That leaves about 60 mentions by Barr of “Libertarian” in contexts other than DOMA. If you want to acquaint yourself with the facts, the videos are at http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=3E88B5A97A94D08C. You’re entitled to your own opinion, but not to your own facts.

  6. Trent Hill

    Brian is quite right. Federalist doesnt not equal conservative. Thomas Jefferson is who I would consider to be the ultimate federalist.

  7. mattc

    You a fan of oldschool hardcore paulie?
    I just downloaded “this is boston, not l.a.”
    Greatness

  8. johncjackson

    For me it’s 200mg ( Walmart generic) caffeine pills washed down with ice cold Pepsi Max, green tea, and Dunkin Donuts coffee.

  9. Trent Hill

    “Federalist doesn’t mean libertarian, either.”

    Nope. But they arent mutually exclusive. A libertarian can be a federalist.

  10. G.E.

    And one cannot be a Federalist (i.e. Hamiltonian centralist like George Phillies and Outright Libertarians) and be a libertarian.

  11. paulie cannoli Post author

    Trent, VirtualGalt, Vindex:

    Either federalists (as Trent is using the term) or anarchists can be libertarians. Either can also be non-libertarians.

    mattc:

    Yes, that is one of the many different kinds of music I listen to. I used to go to a lot of shows at clubs like CBGSs back in the 80s.

    Since you liked those, here’s another

    Madball – Infiltrate the System

  12. kiddleddee

    A federalist can be a libertarian only if he/she believes that the state governments have no moral authority to impinge on individual liberty. Barr’s “state’s rights” was not libertarian. According to Barr the state governments do, in fact, have the authority to criminalize drugs and define personal romantic relationships.

  13. Trent Hill

    “And one cannot be a Federalist (i.e. Hamiltonian centralist like George Phillies and Outright Libertarians) and be a libertarian.”

    We arent talking about “Federalists” but about federalists–those who endorse the concept of federalism. Try to keep up GE.

  14. derkel

    The LP is falling short because we have no media access nor millions of dollars to run a successful campaign. We had a candidate who emphasized liberty and pragmatic views, but he didn’t obtain access to Americans through debates.

    To act like it was the message that failed is somewhat ignorant.

  15. paulie cannoli Post author

    If we aren’t going to do a great deal better than in the past – and we didn’t – there is no justification at all for running on a less hardcore message than we have in the past.

    I predicted this result before the nomination, and was sadly proven correct. However, it wasn’t as bad as I at one point feared – snubgate was nowhere near the killer blow I thought it would be.

  16. derkel

    paulie,

    I would say falling short of expectations had more to do with the Republicrats turning this into a “historical” election.

    Snubgate was nothing, and I fully supported Barr’s reasoning. We are a legitimate party. We don’t need to suck up to a Republican for votes.

  17. paulie cannoli Post author

    I would say falling short of expectations had more to do with the Republicrats turning this into a “historical” election.

    Nah, they do that every time. Every election I can remember has always been “the most important one in our lifetime.”

    Snubgate was nothing, and I fully supported Barr’s reasoning. We are a legitimate party. We don’t need to suck up to a Republican for votes.

    I disagree. The four planks that the four main alternative candidates agree (and Barr later said he does in fact agree) are important issues that the major parties oppose or at best ignore. He would have been well served to be there. However, I will grant that it did not hurt him as much as I expected.

  18. Trent Hill

    “Snubgate was nothing, and I fully supported Barr’s reasoning. We are a legitimate party. We don’t need to suck up to a Republican for votes.”

    A legitimate party? How many members of Congress do you have? How many state legislators? How many mayors of large cities? Medium cities? How many governors or statewide officials?
    A legitimate party, maybe. But you DO need to be sucking up–to any and every one.

  19. G.E.

    We arent talking about “Federalists” but about federalists–those who endorse the concept of federalism. Try to keep up GE.

    I’m keeping up just fine. Hence, I changed the capitalization of the word. I was not contradicting what you said about “federalists;” I was only ADDING a statement about F-ederalists (capital F, keep up).

  20. G.E.

    According to Barr the state governments do, in fact, have the authority to criminalize drugs and define personal romantic relationships.

    FYI: I don’t think the state has any authority to do anything ever. But I also don’t think the federal government has the authority to STOP them from doing much.

  21. derkel

    “He would have been well served to be there. ”

    I agree the 4 planks were important. I disagree that he would have been well served to be there.

    Why stand on the stage with two socialists who are lying and want to increase government? Because it gives good face time?

    “FYI: I don’t think the state has any authority to do anything ever.”

    This is a fallacy. We (the people) give the state certain authority to do things.

  22. derkel

    “I, the Individual, did NOT and DO NOT. Commie.”

    Actually you did. You are a citizen of the United States, and by living here and participating in this society you have given the government the authority for certain actions.

  23. TheOriginalAndy

    “derkel // Dec 17, 2008 at 9:44 pm

    “I, the Individual, did NOT and DO NOT. Commie.”

    Actually you did. You are a citizen of the United States, and by living here and participating in this society you have given the government the authority for certain actions.”

    Oh come on, that’s weak. Even the Declaration of Independence says that government has to have the “conscent of the governed”.

    Just because GE happens to live here it does not mean that he conscented to be governed by this government or any other.

  24. TheOriginalAndy

    “derkel // Dec 17, 2008 at 8:13 pm

    The LP is falling short because we have no media access nor millions of dollars to run a successful campaign.

    The LP is also falling short because there are people who are idiots and/or are corrupt and/or are lazy and/or are weak willed who are in positions in the party that they should not hold.

  25. derkel

    “Oh come on, that’s weak. Even the Declaration of Independence says that government has to have the “conscent of the governed”.

    Just because GE happens to live here it does not mean that he conscented to be governed by this government or any other.”

    I don’t disagree with your statement. But clearly the vast majority of the governed have given consent for the government to have certain authority.

    So it comes down to, did they mean every single individual must give consent or the government authority isn’t legitimate or were they talking about the governed as a collective?

    I would assume collective by the phrase “We the people” in the Constitution.

  26. TheOriginalAndy

    “I don’t disagree with your statement. But clearly the vast majority of the governed have given consent for the government to have certain authority.

    So it comes down to, did they mean every single individual must give consent or the government authority isn’t legitimate or were they talking about the governed as a collective?”

    The Declaration of Independence says that the only purpose of government is to protect life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, and that government must have the conscent of the governed. It doesn’t say the conscent of the majority of people in a geographic territory, it just says conscent of the governed.

    I doubt that GE has given his conscent to be governed.

  27. derkel

    “conscent of the governed. ”

    I understood that point. However, I’m doubting the phrase meant the consent of every single person. Logic would dictate they were using the “governed” as a collective term.

  28. Steven Druckenmiller

    I, the Individual, did NOT and DO NOT. Commie.

    Commie means something, and it does NOT mean “Anyone who disagrees with G.E. about the government’s power”, you ignorant slut.

  29. Steven Druckenmiller

    The LP should be tapping into this will with an extreme distaste for the State a la Murray Rothbard and Lew Rockwell.

    Another common fallacy among people is to think “If people just listened to / read the / believed the same things I did, all would be well in the world.”

  30. TheOriginalAndy

    “paulie cannoli // Dec 17, 2008 at 10:48 pm

    It didn’t mean the consent of every single person.

    But it should have, and still can.”

    How do you know this when it does not say?

  31. JimDavidson

    There would have been a modifier and it would have read, “governments derive their just powers from the unanimous consent of the governed…”

    L. Neil Smith wrote a very interesting novel in 1979 called “The Probability Broach” based on the premise that Jefferson had written in “unanimous consent” and discussing some of the consequences of that alternate path in history. I think there is some value to this idea, and the novel is a lot of fun. Read it for free at bigheadpress.com in graphic novel form.

  32. JimDavidson

    @39 The correct epithet would be “collectivist” and not “commie.” Though they have similar application.

  33. TheOriginalAndy

    “There would have been a modifier and it would have read, ‘governments derive their just powers from the unanimous consent of the governed…'”

    Such a modifier is not needed to interpet it as unanimous conscent. Note that there were no modifiers that said anything about majority conscent.

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