Libertarian National Committee (LNC) to decide fate of Libertarian Party of Oregon (LPO)?

Chairman Mark Hinkle has scheduled an Executive Committee meeting for Sunday, July 17 to discuss two topics:

  • Ballot Access Request for South Dakota; and
  • LPO – Discussion with representatives from each of two groups claiming to be officers of the Oregon affiliate.

In addition, there is an agenda item to discuss a matter in executive session with legal counsel that appears to be related to LPO, because it is under the same category on the agenda. There are no further details offered.

Wes Wagner and Tim Reeves, both of whom claim to be chair of the LPO, have been invited to attend (or send a representative on their behalf).

This would not be the first time that the LNC has been involved with settling a dispute within the LPO. In late 1995, the LPO was also involved in a dispute where more than one faction claimed to be the affiliate’s legitimate officers, leaving the LNC to decide whom to recognize. Soon thereafter, the Oregon Secretary of State recognized as the leaders of the LPO those officers officially recognized by the LNC, so perhaps a similar situation is occurring here today.

334 thoughts on “Libertarian National Committee (LNC) to decide fate of Libertarian Party of Oregon (LPO)?

  1. Thomas L. Knapp

    “Sounds like a productive approach.”

    I guess that depends on what you mean by “productive.”

    The headline implies that the LNC is taking up the matter, but the article makes it clear that it’s just the executive committee — a sub-entity in which the SMC faction has more influence — doing so.

    The new leitmotif of the SMC faction seems to be “what we know we can’t get done openly, do administratively.” As for example, attempting to remove an LNC member by having the secretary “notice” that he’s “not eligible,” rather than following the bylaws procedure for removal.

    In 2000, the LNC disaffiliated the Arizona LP and recognized a new affiliate. This time, the SMC faction had one of its members “notice” a “change” (that said faction supported) and simply implement it. The executive committee will likely ratify that “administrative action.”

    The purpose of the executive committee meeting, and the executive session, isn’t consideration, it’s concealment.

  2. George Phillies

    Behold, accusations that I am the leaker from the LNC-discuss list, and that my source is Rachel Hawkridge, are conclusively disproven.

    Someone else not on the LNC leaked this one.

    However, you might as well hear the exact message:

    The original memo was from Alicia Mattson.

    Colleagues,

    Mark Hinkle has requested that I send out this call for a meeting of the Executive Committee.

    The teleconference call will be held Sunday morning at 8:30 AM Pacific Time / 11:30 AM Eastern Time

    Dial-in number: Yes, I do have a copy of it.
    Access code: Less sophisticated than a Captain Midnight Secret Decoder Ring.

    There will be two topics of discussion:

    1) Ballot access request for funds for South Dakota
    2) LP Oregon
    a) discussion with representatives from each of two groups claiming to be officers of the Oregon affiliate
    b) Executive Session with Legal Counsel

    I anticipate that motions will be introduced for each topic.

    Wes Wagner and Tim Reeves are copied on this message and are hereby invited to speak or have a representative speak on their behalf during the relevant portion.

    LNC members and alternates are invited to listen in on the proceedings of the Executive Committee.

    Alicia Mattson
    LNC Secretary
    *****************

    Vice Chair Mark Rutherford has already indicated he could not attend–scheduling.

  3. George Phillies

    @3 Only the LNC can disaffiliate a state party.

    Naturally, the Libertarian fascists will claim that they are not disaffiliating a party, they are deciding who its officers are.

    The actual disaffiliation bylaw, which the 2000 LNC at least had the brains to follow, even though the outcome was unfortunate, reads:

    The National Committee shall have the power to revoke the status of any affiliate party, for cause, by a vote of 3/4 of the entire National Committee. A motion to revoke the status of an affiliate party for cause must specify the nature of the cause for revocation. The affiliate party may challenge the revocation of its status by written appeal to the Judicial Committee within 30 days of receipt of notice of such revocation. Failure to appeal within 30 days shall confirm the revocation and bar any later challenge or appeal. The National Committee shall not revoke the status of any affiliate party within six months prior to a Regular Convention. The Judicial Committee shall set a date for hearing the appeal within 20 to 40 days of receipt of the appeal and shall notify all interested persons, which persons shall have the right to appear and submit evidence and argument. At the hearing the burden of persuasion shall rest upon the appellant. The Judicial Committee shall either affirm the National Committee’s revocation of affiliate party status or order reinstatement of the affiliate party. The Judicial Committee shall issue its ruling within 30 days of the hearing and in no case later than 90 days prior to a Regular Convention. Failure of the Judicial Committee to rule within 30 days shall constitute an affirmation of the National Committee’s revocation of affiliate party status except when the last day of the 30 day period falls within 90 days prior to a Regular Convention, in which case the Judicial Committee’s non-action shall result in reinstatement of affiliate party status.

  4. Thomas L. Knapp

    Nick@3,

    Actually, this arguably IS a “learning from history” thing.

    When the LNC disaffiliated the Arizona LP, that party’s ballot access went with it instead of staying with the LNC’s new Arizona affiliate (at least in that election cycle — things sorted out differently later in court).

    This time, it looks like there will be no formal disaffiliation.

    Instead, the executive committee will ratify M Carling’s administrative recognition of one set of officers versus another after claiming to have given the matter a “fair hearing” (on a limited access conference call, part of which will be in even more limited access executive session).

    The unrecognized set of officers will still be bound to the LNC’s presidential ticket if they continue to claim to be the legitimate officers of an LNC affiliate.

    Basically, SMC is putting the disaffiliation ball in the other player’s court instead of taking a whack at it themselves.

  5. George Phillies

    @6 If the legitimate party’s delegates are denied access to the National Convention, which is the point of this sort of corruption, then clearly they are not bound by that convention’s decision. I should say, ‘by that convention’s corrupt decision, for admitting a phony delegation’.

    I would expect that any sensible state party will simply ignore your sophistry.

    The more interesting question is whether the next state party to be de facto or de jure disaffiliated will sit there doing nothing, or whether it will undertake large scale counteraction against the current National Party.

  6. Robert Milnes

    @4, the same Alicia Mattson that was deeply involved in The Nolan Resolution getting amended?
    Root is just not this intelligent or sophisticated.
    Iv think there is at least one entity-FBI-and at least one think tank involved in cointelpro against the LP.
    More probably several.
    There is almost certainly a Tea Party takeover of the LP in the works too.
    The fix has been in for Root.
    Duensing shot. Only a miracle-an inch or so- that he wasn’t heart shot dead.
    Nolan dead under what I would say are suspicious circumstances.
    Diversions, provocateurs, etc. Standard stuff.
    Expect an attempt to snitch-jacket Milnes-again.
    Wake up libs!

  7. Robert Milnes

    & do you think the guy with the Ron Paul tee shirt that go in front of George’s camera was an accident?
    He doesn’t have to be a Ronulan Paulnut getting RP’s name there.
    He probably wasn’t.
    He probably was a government agent spying on George’s conference & doing the tee shirt thing & other things while there.
    Alluding to being a Ron Paul supporter is a good cover.

  8. Robert Milnes

    Maybe somebody should look into sabotage of the audio/video system at George’s conference.
    George, the enemy of my enemy is my friend.
    That makes us friends whether I/you like it or not.

  9. Pingback: Libertarian National Committee (LNC) to decide fate of Libertarian Party of Oregon (LPO)? | ThirdPartyPolitics.us

  10. NewFederalist

    “Expect an attempt to snitch-jacket Milnes-again.”

    Do you really think you are that important, Bob? Jeez…

  11. JT

    Milnes: “George, the enemy of my enemy is my friend.
    That makes us friends whether I/you like it or not.”

    No, that doesn’t make your friends. You’re only friends with someone if he or she considers you a friend as well. Maybe Phillies does. Regardless, it takes two to tango.

    NF: “Do you really think you are that important, Bob? Jeez…”

    He definitely does.

  12. George Phillies

    Returning to the topic at hand, did anyone bother to tell the two people who have said that they are state chair what the topic of the meeting is?

    Did anyone indicate what the motions are likely to be related to?

    One of the ways fascists of all stripes attempt to give the illusion of fairness to their proceedings is to stage proceedings in which parties are ambushed with accusations.

  13. George Phillies

    @14
    Reiterating my question from the other thread, when you downloaded the Buttrick speech, did you download the one that went up two weeks ago, whose sound is poor, or the one that went up a few days ago, whose sound was substantially computer enhanced?

  14. Robert Capozzi

    16 gp, yes, ambushing is not cool. Are the principals not aware of the subject at hand? This seems borderline unimaginable to me, but certainly they should be apprised of what the agenda for the meeting is. Do you have reason to believe that the two parties are unaware of the agenda? Do you believe this meeting is a setup of some kind? If so, how so?

    It does strike me as the responsible thing to do for the LNC to hear this situation out. It seems obvious that the LNC can only recognize one state affiliate…do you feel otherwise?

    I’d be surprised if motions have yet to be crafted, although I suspect some who are biased on the matter have some ideas about possible resolutions to this dysfunction.

  15. Kleptocracy and You

    The bad is who ever loses more than likely bolts the Party instead of staying and working for the votes necessary in the next official convention to gain the positions! Most likely becoming enemies not activist friends.

    Will someone PLEASE explain the players and the “plays” so far, AGAIN for us who weren’t privy to all the insider material ? Who are the “good, the bad and the ugly” in this situation ? Who would you side with and why IYOW ? Thx.

    When it comes to the LNC funding BA for a state such as SD, what do you think is right ? Keep in mind SD is one of the states which receives “more” federal representation than their population warrents! SD has the minimum 3 Electoral Votes. Should the LNC go only 50/50 or 75/25 with these smallest states to allow more cash flow for the larger ones such as OK, CT or not ? I know this is nuts and bolts “stuff” but it is very IMPORTANT “stuff” in the scheme of full 51 access ! BA is grind ’em out work I know, but true activist and volunteers could almost meet their goals (where the LAWS allow naturally) at and around major college football games this fall. Local state Parties could get their 25, 50 or even 100% parts of the goal on their own at these large events. (In my state and in some of your states as well, thousands upon thousands of people who don’t even have tickets in addition to the 170,000 plus [2 major U.] who have tickets show up for the big games ) The local activist/volunteers would be finding new supporters as well as gathering the much needed BA sigs also !! Even in SD, ND etc. thousands of state residents (the majority reg. voters) show up for the saturday college fb games. The money SAVED on BA could finally be used on the much needed advertisement to begin building the numbers upward in members and in votes. Any thoughts welcome, even GP and CP comments welcome on this one !!! How much and where should the Nat Parties help on BA ?!

    *** ^ ***

    Foreign aid is little more than welfare for nations — with the same disastrous effects as domestic welfare programs.
    http://www.lp.org/

    “A free and competitive market allocates resources in the most efficient manner. Each person has the right to offer goods and services to others on the free market. The only proper role of government in the economic realm is to protect property rights, adjudicate disputes, and provide a legal framework in which voluntary trade is protected. All efforts by government to redistribute wealth, or to control or manage trade, are improper in a free society.” – Libertarian Party Platform, Section 2.0 – http://www.lp.org/

    “The defense of the country requires that we have adequate intelligence to detect and to counter threats to domestic security. This requirement must not take priority over maintaining the civil liberties of our citizens. The Bill of Rights provides no exceptions for a time of war. Intelligence agencies that legitimately seek to preserve the security of the nation must be subject to oversight and transparency.” – Libertarian Party Platform, Section 3.1 – http://www.lp.org/

  16. Robert Capozzi

    19 K: The bad is who ever loses more than likely bolts the Party instead of staying and working for the votes necessary in the next official convention to gain the positions!

    me: Given the choice between this and having 2 state parties in one state, which is more dysfunctional? Yes, waiting for it to somehow blow over might be a third option, but I suspect it has risks, too. For ex., if there are two functioning state parties now, who’s to say that they will come together next go round? Maybe they’ll just continue that way in perpetuity.

    If it’s shown that one side is not legit, then we should know that.

    Time to eat our peas. Time to pull the Band Aid off. Time to man up.

  17. Robert Milnes

    JT, George @17 is asking you which version you are saying is audio challenged.
    George, don’t you feel gypped and/or suckered? You PAID for this conference that has been ruined. Due to poor A/V? Come on. A/V recording is basic stuff. How incompetent is the person/company engaged to do that? OR, how good was the sabotage. Ask the guy with the huge back & Ron Paul tee shirt who appears to have something to do with the camerawork.
    Darryl, I didn’t hijack this thread. We have shenanegans by LNC-again-& shenanegans at George’s conference. I just can add 2 +2, that’s all.

  18. George Phillies

    Starr’s observation “there is an agenda item to discuss a matter in executive session with legal counsel that appears to be related to LPO, because it is under the same category on the agenda. ”

    that the legal piece is related to Oregon, as opposed to being related to e.g. ballot access, is very perceptive.

  19. Darryl W. Perry

    @Robert Milnes

    I can find “shenanigans” almost anywhere… doesn’t mean I post about them on an unrelated thread!

    Please, I’m begging you, STOP trying to make every thread about YOU!

  20. David Colborne

    Wasn’t part of the problem with the LPO that one faction was unable to hold a convention due to some weapons-grade stupid in their bylaws? Something about requiring a majority of all LPO members to attend, including “lifetime members” that nobody heard from since the ’70s?

  21. Robert Capozzi

    3 ns: Learn from history or repeat it.

    me: This truism is often repeated without being challenged. Is it true? As a radical, I’d say no. History is merely a bundle of selective perceptions woven together in a story in the present. These memories have nothing to do with the selective perceptions in the present or the future, for that matter.

    The past is past. Carrying grievances forward in one’s head for decades seems like an excellent way to be angry.

  22. NewFederalist

    @#28… thanks for the info. I thought I read that entire “IPR is for sale” some time back and didn’t remember any price range being part of the article. I must have missed it. Thanks again.

  23. Robert Milnes

    George, you hypocrite, you bring up the bureaucratic goings on calling it “…corruption…”. Then when I comment about such stuff it is weeds & lack of IPR maintenence.
    & then cross thread about your bungled A/V at all but boycotted conference.
    Do the conference over, dump the strict requirement in presidential debaters & make sure the cameras are working. & weed out the Ronulan Paulnuts & government agents. I’ll show up & it will be a success.
    OK?

  24. Please, No Weeding and Painting

    Phillies: If the owners of IPR actually want the site to be worth the price they are asking, they need to weed the garden and paint the house regularly.

    Third Party Watch was a pretty good site — until they began doing lots of weeding and painting.

    Weeding and painting are for control freaks, not free speech advocates.

  25. Soviet Libertarians

    Anyone else get a sense that whenever the LNC (and some state LPs) investigates or discusses an issue of controversy, to determine an outcome — the outcome is already pre-determined?

    Kinda like legislative votes and criminal trials in the old Soviet Union.

  26. Robert Capozzi

    33 Soviet, no. Collective decision making does involve pre-maneuvering, just like court cases.

  27. Some Obivous Guy

    SL @33

    Of course they are. If you are doing the right thing you don’t have to setup a dog and pony show to pretend that you have some authority you don’t really have — then pull everyone into an executive sessions where a lawyer who is interested in getting more billable hours convinces a subset of your board like a used-car-salesman to do something monumentally stupid.

    Later you will all rationalize it after you are booted out of office too for getting the whole party committed to an expensive laborious process with no gain.

  28. Kleptocracy and You

    @32 – Free Speech – GOOD, censorship – BAD !

    Expression and Communication – We (the members of the Libertarian Party) support full freedom of expression and oppose government censorship, regulation or control of communications media and technology. We favor the freedom to engage in or abstain from any religious activities that do not violate the rights of others. We oppose government actions which either aid or attack any religion. –

    The Libertarian Party carries on today in the tradition of the Founders:

    •The Libertarian Party didn’t wait for the Internet to become popular to stand up for principle: The LP has always supported freedom of speech and the press, and has had language specifically supporting freedom of online communication in its Platform since 1991.
    •The Libertarian Party joined with thousands of concerned Internet users in “turning its web pages black” in protest of President Clinton’s signing the unconstitutional “Communications Decency Act” in 1995.
    •The Libertarian Party continues to speak out today against the attempts by Democrats and Republicans to find loop-holes in the First Amendment, so they can turn the Internet into a government-controlled medium.
    http://www.lp.org/

    Politicians are trying to take away your right to read what you want, and to say what you want.

    The Internet is making it possible for new voices to be heard — the voices of people who simply could not afford to publish their ideas or display their artistic talents to a wide audience using older technologies. Established interests of both the left and the right fear new voices, and are trying to control what appears on the Internet through new laws and regulations.

    America’s Founders couldn’t foresee the Internet, but they knew that government control of information was not only a violation of personal liberty — it was a threat to their hopes for a nation based on the principles of self-government. So they gave us the First Amendment.
    http://www.lp.org/

    @ 33 – Sir (or Madam) your statements sound “conspiratorial” and every SANE person knows there are NO conspiracies within the LP, American or World Politics for that matter. Anyone espousing such ideas need to be placed in a RUBBER room while constrained within a straitjacket. If you will but supply a current home address someone here will send you assistants to help you before you harm yourself or others…

    It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong. – Voltaire

    “I am delighted to be here in these new [Council on Foreign Relations] headquarters. I have been often to, I guess, the mother ship in New York City, but it’s good to have an outpost of the Council right here down the street from the State Department. We get a lot of advice from the Council, so this will mean I won’t have as far to go to be told what we should be doing and how we should think about the future.” – Hillary Clinton, Secretary of State, 7/15/2009

    `~CFR – Council on Foreign Relations Hillary Clinton tells who gives the orders: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q-sUywS0FJ4&feature=fvwrel

    “The interests behind the Bush Administration, such as the CFR, The Trilateral Commission – founded by Brzezinski for David Rockefeller – and the Bilderberger Group, have prepared for and are now moving to implement open world dictatorship … They are not fighting against terrorists. They are fighting against citizens.” — Dr. Johannes B. Koeppl, Ph.D., former German defense ministry official and advisor to former NATO Secretary General Manfred Werner

    “The American Communists worked energetically and tirelessly to lay the foundations for the United Nations, which we were sure would come into existence.” – Earl Brower – former President of Communist Party USA

    “We must strengthen the United Nations as a first step toward a World Government, patterned after our Own Government with a legislature, executive and judiciary and police.” – Walter Cronkite

    “The United Nations is the greatest fraud in history. Its purpose is to destroy the United States.” – Congressman John E. Rankin

    “It is the sacred principles enshrined in the United Nations charter to which the American people will henceforth pledge their allegiance.” – George H.W. Bush

    “The planning of the UN can be traced to the ‘secret steering committee’ established by Secretary [of State Cordell] Hull in January 1943. All of the members of this secret committee, with the exception of Hull, a Tennessee politician, were members of the Council on Foreign Relations. They saw Hull regularly to plan, select, and guide the labors of the [State] Department’s Advisory Committee. It was, in effect, the coordinating agency for all the State Department’s postwar planning.” – Professors Laurence H. Shoup and William Minter, writing in their study of the CFR, “Imperial Brain Trust: The CFR and United States Foreign Policy.”

  29. George Phillies

    What happened at the meeting? Some of my sources have given me a few choice bits of information. They will be appearing on the forum at TheLibertyDaily.com

  30. Nicholas Sarwark

    Mary Ruwart’s motion to have the whole LNC deal with the issue had no second.

    Well, the whole LNC will probably have to take it up eventually, since disaffiliation requires a vote of the entire LNC. The EC can do other things, of course, but not actual disaffiliation.

  31. George Phillies

    @40 There are appreciable indications that the scheme will be to claim that they are not disaffiliating the Oregon Party, they are just deciding who its state chair and Committee are.

    At that point, they get to recycle the blinding genius of the 2000 LNC, which sent packing the people with Presidential ballot access, despite regular postings on the then-equivalent of this site or TheLibertyDaily.Com, specifying exactly what was happen on one of the future branching paths.

    It happened.

    On the bright side, losing half of total national membership for the second time (33000->16000 being the first) will be challenging, because 13500->6800 means that life members are now a large part of the total.

    On the other hand, the LNC did it once, so they may be able to fall to the occasion again.

  32. Robert Capozzi

    41 gp, two things:

    1) I’ve missed it…what would you suggest be done about LPO?

    2) Just curious…have you ever been at least generally supportive and positive on the LNC for any period of time? If so, when and why?

  33. Thomas L. Knapp

    RC @42,

    “what would you suggest be done about LPO?”

    That was addressed to George, but I’ll offer my own suggestions.

    Unless Oregon is involved in some kind of UMP-type program, which would necessitate decisions about whom to send money to, the relationship between the LNC and state affiliates really only comes into play in two cases:

    1) Recognition of delegations at national conventions; and

    2) Votes by chairs regarding selection/removal/replacement of regional representatives to the LNC.

    With respect to the first, it’s conceivably possible to delay any action until the next national convention, in which case there might be a credentials fight of some sort — and the body of delegates could rule on that matter if necessary (actually, they could so rule even if the LNC does act ).

    It might not be wise to wait quite that long, but the point is that no rash, speedy action is required. The LNC has until nearly the end of the year to act in time for convention even if disaffiliation/new affiliation is what’s required. Within that timeframe the state of Oregon might speak dispositively on the matter.

    Speaking of which, the LP claims to be a political party, so yes, its national committee should be mindful that its state affiliates, to the extent that they style themselves political parties, are not “private organizations” but rather public organizations chartered and governed by state law. Absent extraordinary circumstances such as violation of national bylaws by an affiliate, the affiliate should be the group recognized by the state as “the Libertarian Party.”

    The only time the second instance comes into play is if there’s a change in regional reps involving Oregon, and Oregon’s chair’s vote is the deciding vote, and the two alleged state chairs vote differently. At that point, the LNC might have to decide what outcome to recognize.

    So, the answer to the question “what should be done (by the LNC) about the LPO?” is “right now, not a thing.”

  34. Robert Capozzi

    44 tk, the UMP matter should be an easy matter to clarify. Moving now rather than later when it’s a crisis seems wise when money’s involved, especially given that almost all involved are part-time volunteers.

    Without UMP, my impulse is still to at least begin to frame the issue if only for convention seating reasons. Again, we’re talking volunteers who don’t have a lot of time to waste pouring through complex and sometimes contradictory information.

    Thanks, though, there may well be no imperative for the LNC to begin to at least begin its fact-finding. I’d like to see this sorted out if only because I’d like to see the LP optimize its prospects in 2012, in OR and nationally. Bizarre and childish floor fights seem on their face to be at best distractions to the goal, which I’d think would be advancing liberty in the public square.

  35. Robert Capozzi

    more…

    Of course, my hope is that the LP would be prepared for a Paul/Johnson ticket come next May. I’d like the decks cleared for that somewhat remote possibility. I’d like to see Paul and Johnson to have no excuses not to see the logic of the opportunity to bring a strong liberty message all the way to Nov. ’12.

  36. Nicholas Sarwark

    To my knowledge, there is no more Unified Membership Program (UMP) style funds transfers from National to state affiliates. It was apparently a pain in the ass to get it to work right under BCRA and dismantled.

    Some people would like to bring it back (including some in my state party), since it provided a smooth monthly revenue stream instead of lump membership payments, but there’s nothing in place now that I’m aware of.

  37. Thomas L. Knapp

    Bob @ 45,

    “my impulse is still to at least begin to frame the issue if only for convention seating reasons.”

    I guess it depends on what you mean by “beginning to frame the issue.”

    Administrative ukase followed by in camera executive committee meetings don’t strike me as “framing,” unless the “framing” is “hey, SMC is up to its usual fuckery — the stuff that backfires on them every time but that they can’t seem to make themselves give up.”

  38. George Phillies

    @48

    Tom

    The one current substantive issue is where to send the list of contacts and LPUS members. There is a limit that the LNC have only one affiliate in a state, but that has nothing to do with list sharing limits Alas, they are not up to recognizing that they can share the list with other people, and therefore could simply send the list to both sides and ignore the issue.

  39. George Phillies

    @47 You are correct. UMP shut down a half-decade ago.

    UMPs other problem was that it was financially impossible given how much money the LNC was spending. Shipping half your dues off to the states meant that the states could do more, and national correspondingly had to do less. Well, less’ rarely works with bureaucracies.

  40. Robert Capozzi

    Actually, it’s SCM. I distinctly recall coining it. M joined the “cabal” last.

    Rush Limbaugh might make that “Scum.” But I’m sure y’all are above Limbaugh…

  41. George Phillies

    @3 and they chose…REPEAT.

    Recycling is good, but not for your mistakes.

    I am advised that the LNC ExComm voted

    by 6-1, that the valid LP Oregon Bylaws are the 2009 bylaws.

    by 6-1, that the Reeves faction are the legitimate officers

    The 1 vote was Mary Ruwart.

    By 7-0, something to the extent that the Oregon LP should try to solve its problems internally.

    That’s right. The LNC ExComm voted that it has the power to decide what your state party bylaws are, if there is a dispute.

    They also voted that they can decide who your officers are, if there is a dispute.

    It is inobvious why this decision did not go to the full LNC.

    The LP of Oregon could appeal to the Judicial Committee, either ‘this is in fact a disaffiliation, just like Arizona, and the LNC is wrong’ or ‘this decision violates party bylaws’.

    I expect the real LP of Oregon will view this as an unproductive waste of time.

  42. Robert Capozzi

    55 gp, that’s a good question — whether this was more appropriate for the full LNC. I’d guess that Hinkle viewed this as an emergency, which I can understand, too.

    I might think that this is not so much a “disaffiliation,” but rather the LNC choosing to recognize the Reeves-chaired LPO. If someone just claimed a state party without following procedures, it seems perfectly appropriate for a national committee to sort out which group it recognizes. The UN does this sometimes, too.

  43. Thomas L. Knapp

    Bob @ 56,

    As I explained before, I’m not sure why Hinkle would view this as an “emergency” from national’s standpoint.

    Apart from perhaps some slight drag on recruitment that would be caused by saying “we don’t know which group of officers is legit, so we’re not going to send either group e.g. lists of new national members to talk to about local activism,” the LNC had, at a minimum, several months to let the situation sort itself out instead of trying to do the sorting from the top.

    This executive committee action has the potential to create an emergency, if the group of officers it chose to recognize turns out not to be the wrong one. It may very well result in the Libertarian Party of Oregon (an entity defined by state law) and the LNC affiliate in Oregon being two different organizations.

  44. Wes Wagner

    TK@58

    You are correct. The legal entity The Libertarian Party of Oregon’s board of directors last night met and ultimately decided that our official response to the LNC was literally a flaming middle finger. That response has been delivered.

    We will continue to conduct the business of the registered Libertarian voters of the State of Oregon and intend to retain ownership of the ballot access and party bank account.

    We do not recognize the Libertarian National Committee Inc.’s authority to act in any manner on this issue and reiterated that we are a separate legal entity incorporated as a domestic non-profit corporation under Oregon law and are in no manner legally bound to the foreign corporation known as the Libertarian National Committee Inc.

    Sincerely,
    Wes Wagner
    Chairperson, Libertarian Party of Oregon

  45. Robert Capozzi

    58 tk, I heard what you said. I’d say it is an emergency-in-progress, so from what I know of this situation, it appears Hinkle made a good call in bringing this to a head now, rather than later. Sometimes, ya gotta man up, take your lumps, and address a festering sore earlier rather than later. Waiting til May ’12 increased the odds of a full-blown amputation, in my judgment.

    That Wagner is calling the LNC a “foreign corporation” strikes me as indicative of a Jefferson Davis mindset and certainly a lack of civility (e.g., “flaming middle finger”).

    The LNC of course can recognize what it wants to recognize. Hinkle may have made a tactical error in making this an ExComm matter, but I don’t have enough information to make that assessment.

    From what I know of Hinkle, he’s an old-school Berglandista, so it’s fascinating to me that this incident is being pegged as a reform/radical matter.

    This may end badly, but we can’t know how it would have ended otherwise. I trust that the 6 and the 1 ExCommers did their best in weighing their decisions out for the best interest of liberty, not because of some narrow, legalistic desire for some in a state party to control their state LP.

  46. Robert Capozzi

    Clarifying…

    When I say “Jefferson Davis mindset,” I refer to a sense of making precipitous, calamitous, rash, un-co-operative judgments that are in no one’s interests.

  47. Wes Wagner

    RC@61

    I agree, the ex-comms precipitous, calamitous, rash, un-co-operative judgements in favor of their favorite local petty crook in Oregon have made relations strained.

  48. George Phillies

    @19

    OF course, the Reeves faction is under their 2009 bylaws, which require a majority of the members to show up before they have a quorum, so their chances of having a convention are exactly what they were last which, which is to say, *almost zero*.

  49. Wes Wagner

    GP@64

    I am sure they will change their interpretation of quorum the moment they realize they can’t select a national delegation without having a quorum at a convention.

    Just in time to support the re-election of the people who put them into power of a sham affiliate that has no legal status and no ballot access.

    No worries.

  50. Jill Pyeatt

    Wow, I’m not surprised by yesterday’s development. Disgusted by the secretive, select group of LNC members who have involved themselves in a state affiliate. It just makes me more determined to show up in Las Vegas next May to vote out those I see doing harm.

    BTW, I should know this, but I don’t: how long is Mark Hinkle’s term as chair?

  51. Robert Capozzi

    66 jp, who would you vote for? Hinkle is a “radical,” from “your side.” It seems that “radicals” go “native” when they become chair, or something. They get corrupted, perhaps hypnotized, by SCM…is that the story?

    Frankly, though, were I advising Hinkle, I would have strongly suggested not doing this in Excomm, and certainly not in executive session. Perhaps there was a good reason for doing so, but it doesn’t look good.

    I am curious, though…if two groups claim to be the state affiliate, why does it not make sense for the LNC to choose one?

  52. Robert Capozzi

    70 rlw, I’d be shocked if no one has. As a former LNC member and declared presidential candidate, it strikes me that you have some standing in the matter, at least by reputation alone.

    Article 6 reads pretty clearly to me, although I’m not a lawyer nor a parliamentarian. Section 3 reads:

    3. There shall be no more than one state-level affiliate party in any one state. Each state level affiliate party shall, in accordance with its own Bylaws and these Bylaws, determine
    who shall be its delegates to all Regular Conventions. A state-level affiliate party may
    charter sub-affiliate parties within the state, which will entitle such sub-affiliates to use the
    name “Libertarian Party.”

    Excomm saw that OR was in non-compliance (2 state parties), read the OR bylaws, and made a decision. Seems straightforward…

  53. Jill Pyeatt

    RC at 69: I recognize that there is another side of the story, and I’ll be waiting to hear if there’s any explanation from the LNC. My main objection is the shenanigans that brought the situation about. It just seems sneaky and underhanded, as did the Nevada situation. It certainly seems like a few members of the LNC has its own agenda.

    I like some of what Hinkle’s done, but I disagree with other things. At this point, I have no idea who could do a better job.

  54. LibertarianGirl

    why cant there be 2 LP Parties in Oregon , kinda like county affiliates but more like co-state committees , both with their own members both doing things their way , attracting folks on a preference basis , and thus doubly increase the chance for people to hear the message… then the only thing to fight over would be running candidates and you could do it at a co-convention…. Imagine that , everybody doing their best , in their own productive way, raising the bar for everyone and getting the message out ..
    too simple?

  55. LibertarianGirl

    after actually speaking with Mark Hinkle over the course of a day , I am convinced he is a true neutral, fairminded and beholden to noone . He impressed me and I have 0 reservations about his doing what he feels is right no matter who it impresses or pisses off .–remember its not his job to make people vote a certain way or use his office to direct an outcome , he’s sposed to be the levelheaded guy in charge who runs the meeting , .Loved him — and Wes Benedict , loved him too , he gave a great speech and u know what he sounded like he was speaking truth and not at all worried about who might not like it….

    im alot less worried about where we are as a party and who’s in charge …

  56. Soviet Libertarians

    Wes Wagner: We do not recognize the Libertarian National Committee Inc.’s authority to act in any manner on this issue and reiterated that we are a separate legal entity incorporated as a domestic non-profit corporation under Oregon law and are in no manner legally bound to the foreign corporation known as the Libertarian National Committee Inc.

    Bravo!

    Take the issue to a state court, if it comes to that.

    Many state courts are more libertarian than is the LNC.

  57. George Phillies

    @71 Thank you for reminding us that you can appear to be a functional illiterate.

    The Bylaw you quote says there can be only one affiliate. Absolutely no one claims there were two *affiliates*. The rest of your rant has nothing to do with the bylaw or the issue, and, by the way, the statement that the LNC gets to vote precludes the ExComm doing the voting.

  58. George Phillies

    Returning to my theme of a while back, we are recycling the 2000 Arizona issue, except I believe the current group being persecuted by the LNC is going to be less inert in its reactions.

  59. Chuck Moulton

    This should have been voted on by the full LNC (which is meeting in 1 month) with the threshold of a disaffiliation vote if the national party wanted to intervene. The ex-com doesn’t have the authority to decide what amounts to a constructive disaffiliation — nor does the LNC secretary nor the LSLA secretary unilaterally.

    I am sympathetic to national recognizing the Reeves version of the affiliate given the evidence I have seen, but the process outlined here troubles me a lot. A segment of the LNC basically has said one faction of the LPO violated its bylaws… and in the process that segment of the LNC has violated the LP bylaws.

    This mess keeps getting messier.

  60. Thomas L. Knapp

    RC@60,

    You write:

    “From what I know of Hinkle, he’s an old-school Berglandista, so it’s fascinating to me that this incident is being pegged as a reform/radical matter. ”

    Who’s pegging it that way?

    Off the cuff, I’ve always just assumed that the LNC’s continual bad behavior in the Lenin/Stalin “democratic centralist” mode — issuing edicts on state party affairs for no good reason, fraudulently claiming ownership of the name “Libertarian Party,” etc. — is an artifact of Rothbard’s openly Leninist strategy phase.

    Yes, some of the people taking advantage of that particular dysfunctionality, some of the time, are nominally associated with the LP’s “reform” faction, but what of it? Give your enemy a sword and he’ll likely use it.

  61. George Phillies

    The ship has rammed the iceberg.

    At a constructive guess, the Oregon Party people might be satisfied if the folks who voted to eject them were all to resign from the LNC. Immediately after revoking their motions 1 and 2.

    But I would not put a lot of money on that.

    I belief Mr ship has met his last love in life, Miss Iceberg.

  62. Michael H. Wilson

    The sad part is that this crap has been going on since the early ’90s.

    All the work Tonie Nathan and a few others did to build the party has been flushed down the drain.

  63. George Phillies

    @81 We are led to understand that the Oregon State Party has sent the LNC a responder. The associated graphic attached to the message was a closed fist, palm toward speaker, with digitus impudicus outstretched.

    The other response is visible on the internet, but I will let them announce it.

  64. Michael H. Wilson

    re 82. I have tried to ignore most of what has been going on in the LPO for the last 6 years. Previously I was involved with the party from about 1989 until about 2005 and held a number of elected positions during that time. I do know people who keep me informed and have attended a convention or two since 2005.

    I also had a talk with someone who is more informed than I am this weekend. There is a lot more to this and I was surprised by what I was told over the weekend. Someone needs to do some serious digging into what and why this continues. Especially emphasize the why.

  65. Robert Capozzi

    76 gp: Thank you for reminding us that you can appear to be a functional illiterate.

    me: Thanks for sharing your opinion. To me, two competing state committees = two parties. It could well be that I’m the only person on earth who reads it that way, but I’d be surprised if that were the case. But, then, I don’t claim any special expertise in this sort of thing. It’s not my practice to get wrapped around my axles over hyper-technicalities.

  66. Robert Capozzi

    79 tk: … fraudulently claiming ownership of the name “Libertarian Party,” etc. — is an artifact of Rothbard’s openly Leninist strategy phase.

    me: Ah, yes. If only you were in Nolan’s living room in the early 70s, the dysfunctional flow might have been averted. 😉 The control freakisms could have been significantly tamped down. We’d never hear at LP conventions, “Divide the question!” and other nonsense that amounts to nothing.

  67. Kevin Knedler

    @ 87
    We will know the answer to your question on August 19 in Columbus, Ohio.

  68. Thomas L. Knapp

    RC@86,

    You write:

    “If only you were in Nolan’s living room in the early 70s, the dysfunctional flow might have been averted.”

    What do the early 1970s and Nolan’s living room have to do with anything? The Libertarian National Committee did not exist at that time or in that place.

  69. George Phillies

    @87 78 is actually Chuck Moulton. He is refetring to the front end issue that soon after the Reeves Faction claimed to have taken over the party LSLA Secretary M Carling removed Wes Wagner from the LSLA mailing list and replaced them with members of the Reeves faction.

    The LNC got involved later.

    LSLA is the same as ‘State Chairs’.

  70. JT

    A disaffiliation requires a legitimate affiliation in the first place, which is what’s in dispute–which group is the actual state affiliate, right? That question has to be answered before any move to disaffiliate anything could even be considered, it seems to me. I think it’s a good idea for national party reps. to answer it.

  71. Robert Capozzi

    89 tk, I was pointing to the point of inception, where the dysfunction began, as I see it. You may believe that the point of inception came a bit later, e.g., Rothbard’s entry on stage or Rothbard’s Leninist strategy paper. IOW, if the LP was setup more like the BTP, the shenanigan factor might be a lot less pronounced.

  72. Robert Capozzi

    76 gp: Thank you for reminding us that you can appear to be a functional illiterate.

    me: My other response is that I have to wonder if you are projecting here. I s’pose there are times when ANY of us could misunderstand something and be considered temporarily functionally illiterate.

    I mean, aren’t you the guy who misread an FEC report, went ballistic in the eyes of many, and then filed a complaint against the LNC with the FEC, i.e., the Great Narc of 09? Consider the possibility that at that moment, you too were functionally illiterate!

    We all make mistakes. Why not leave it at that? Why get all sanctimonious? Why all the righteous indignation? What’s it all buy you?

  73. Thomas L. Knapp

    Quoth Robert Capozzi @ 95,

    “I mean, [isn’t George Phillies] the guy who misread an FEC report”

    No. He read the FEC report correctly. The FEC report did not match the other public statements of involved parties (those statements were later corrected, after he raised the issue of the inconsistency).

    “went ballistic in the eyes of many”

    To the best of my knowledge and recollection, you’re the only person who’s ever described it in that way. Thy name is Legion, perhaps?

    “and then filed a complaint against the LNC with the FEC”

    You left out the part where he inquired, through an LNC member, as to the inconsistency between FEC reports and public statements, and the part where, instead of answering as to the nature of said inconsistency, the LNC went into executive session for the purpose of berating and intimidating said LNC member for having raised the question.

    On this particular matter, you have long since gone well over into “I am willing to lie about something when it seems like a good way to slam George Phillies” territory.

  74. Robert Capozzi

    96 tk, right. There was an information gap. Literate people IMO recognize that information is often incomplete. With this knowledge, IMO it is judicious to proceed with care, particularly when it involves filing complaints with the government against your own people.

    GP “slammed” me, suggesting I’m sometimes “functionally illiterate.” I thanked him, because I — like us all — sometimes make mistakes (although in that case of what is in effect 2 parties, not so much).

    He seems unwilling to admit that he made a mistake narcing to the FEC on the LNC. This seems like a poor way to rebuild credibility, but, then again, I am sometimes incorrect! I fully admit that!

    I assure you that I want GP, you, and everyone to have a most wonderful life. Call that a “lie” if you will, it doesn’t make it so.

  75. Robert Capozzi

    more…

    IOW, “He who lives in a glass house shouldn’t throw stones.” Denying one’s house is glass only makes it worse! IMO.

  76. George Phillies

    @96 In fact, I read the FEC report of the Barr campaign correctly. It claimed they had received $10,000 from the LNC.

    In fact, as of this typing, the Barr 2008 Campaign *still* claims *under penalty of perjury* that they received $10,000 from the Libertarian National Committee.

    The LNC *still* claims, as I reported at the time, that they did not.

    OF course, if you are a functional illiterate, you can readily see how

    “Libertarian National Committee
    2600 Virginia Ave NW Ste 200
    Washington, DC 200371914
    07/23/2008 10000.00”

    the line entry in the amended and currently valid disclosure of July 2008 donors to the Barr campaign, is being misread to say that the LNC gave the Barr campaign $10,000.

    Furthermore Mr Crapozzi to the contrary, both parties were asked to explain the situation. The Treasurer to the Barr Campaign specifically confirmed to the LNC member who inquired whether the transfer had been made, as supplied to em by Rachel Hawkridge, that

    From: David F. Chastain
    Date: Wed, Jul 8, 2009 at 6:50 PM
    Subject: Re: Would you please?
    To: “Rachel H. for LPWA Communications”

    Hi Rachel,

    I am asking the folks who handle our books to look into it. Please bear with me.

    David Chastain
    770-630-8294 cell

    AND

    ———- Forwarded message ———-
    From: David F. Chastain
    Date: Thu, Jul 9, 2009 at 3:44 AM
    Subject: Re: Would you please?
    To: “Rachel H. for LPWA Communications”

    Rachel,
    I am told your reference goes back to a wire transfer. Please contact Robert Kraus at LNC for the documentation.
    David

    Furthermore, when the LNC member in question tried to raise the question with the LNC, instead of answering the question she was attacked and vilified by other LNC members.

    As for your defense of theft or fraud, Mr. Capozzi, well, you are an advocate of a Libertarian campaign team of Gary Guantanamo Gulag Johnson and Ron Survival Report Paul, which says rather little for your ethics.

  77. George Phillies

    To repeat, I asked through intermediaries both sides about the transfer, well before anything else happened, and one side confirmed that the transfer was real, and the other viciously attacked a fellow LNC member.

  78. Robert Capozzi

    100 gp, to be clear, it seems to me perfectly in bounds for you to be concerned about this information. What IMO is OUT of bounds is filing a complaint against the LNC, especially when you had other options to investigate your concerns. My opinion is you overreacted. That’s OK, we all overreact from time to time. I still can’t fathom why you won’t admit that.

    I am not defending anything, certainly not “fraud” or “theft.” Of course, anyone can accuse anyone of anything. I still stand by the idea that one is innocent until proven guilty. You, OTOH, may not. It appears you don’t. You seem to have taken on the role of prosecutor, judge and jury, which I’d suggest is a mistake.

    As for the “ethics” of my thought experiment of the LP having a ticket of Paul/Johnson in 2012, I’m real OK with the idea, despite our shared concerns about some of their views and histories. I operate from the premise that nobody’s perfect, including candidates.

    Don’t you agree? Or, as a would-be presidential candidate yourself, is it your view that your positions are flawlessly “ethical” and perfectly crafted? If so, perhaps I am hopelessly incorrect, and I should start a Draft Phillies 2012 campaign….

  79. Oregon Party Appeals

    The Libertarian Party of Oregon has appealed to the National Party Judicial Committee its disaffiliation by the LNC. The appeal is on purely procedural grounds.

    Read the full appeal at TheLibertyDaily.com

  80. Chuck Moulton

    The Wagner version of the LPO affiliate seems to have a very legitimate case for the LP judicial committee. Having met very infrequently for decades, the judicial committee is now likely to meet a second time in only a handful of years (the other being the Wrights matter).

    I’m mystified at why the executive committee took up this matter when it clearly had no delegated authority under the bylaws to handle what amounts to a constructive disaffiliation. The executive committee was intended to handle only emergency action… action that can wait a few weeks can be handled by a mail ballot and action that can wait a few months can be handled at a LNC meeting. I’ve seen nothing that indicates to me these decisions couldn’t wait a month for the LNC meeting to be held in Columbus, OH.

    When two entities both purport to be the valid affiliate, the LNC needs to make a determination which to recognize. I believe the clear intent of the national LP bylaws was to set a very high voting threshold for this decision and to rest it with the LNC rather than an officer or the executive committee.

    If the LNC recognizes one group of officers purporting to be an affiliate as valid, it has constructively declared the other group as invalid. This has removed its association/affiliation with that latter group, which is by definition a disaffiliation. In this case the competing groups of officers also claim to have completely different governing documents, different membership, and will subsequently have different meetings. It is hard for me to think of what other characteristics they would have to differentiate to be different affiliates.

    Both groups want to access the resources of ballot access in Oregon, recognition by the national Libertarian Party, and seating at the upcoming national convention. They are in competition for affilate status, so I see the fact that they both claim to be the same affiliate rather than claiming to be different affiliates as a distinction without a difference.

    If a group of people can claim to be the officers of an affiliate and be recognized over a competing group by the LNC chair or secretary or executive committee without involving the LNC as a whole, that makes the disaffiliation provision of the bylaws toothless and opens the door for an officer or EC to unilaterally reshape any (or every) state party without accountability.

  81. Michael H. Wilson

    Regarding the Oregon issue, I find it interesting that Carling is allowed to post to the LNC discussion list. How is this arranged? I am sure that there are a number of members of the LP who would be interested in posting there as well.

  82. Wes Wagner

    CM@105

    You are factually correct on all points but one. The current slate of officers registered with the Oregon Secretary of State, regardless of what national decides, will retain lawful possession of those offices, the party bank account and the ballot access, regardless of what national decides to do with the affiliation agreement and national delegation.

    Only the affiliation agreement and national delegation is within the scope of the Libertarian National Committee Inc.’s capacity to sever, disaffiliate us and recognize a new organization instead.

  83. Wes Wagner

    myself @ 107

    I should probably add explicitly instead of implicitly all that I put forth is true …. unless another body of law and authority within the State of Oregon declares otherwise and is sustained.

  84. Nobody reads anymore

    I read the LNC bylaws and it appears to me that the LNC and the State Parties are in a confederated association. Unlike a federation where you have a Super State on top of the States where it can pass laws that control the subordinate States, a confederation is simply a unified treaty between sovereign states. In the case of the LNC, INC. the treaty is to nominate national candidates and share information.

    State party affiliation with the LNC is a treaty, where the LNC has no power at all regulate or adjudicate anything that the State party does. The LNC can only revoke affiliation for Cause as per:
    Articale 6
    Section 4. No affiliate party shall endorse any candidate who is a member of another party for public office in any partisan election. No affiliate party shall take any action inconsistent with the
    Statement of Principles or these Bylaws.

    As far as I read it, that is the only FOR CA– USE reason. They cannot revoke affiliation because they don’t like the chair, or disagree with state party bylaws, or for political agenda and whims of the current ruling governing group.

    The LNC states there can only be one State Party affiliate per State. The assumption that the LNC can simply choose what group of people they want to be the State Affiliate is absurd. If this absurdity is upheld, This would only make a sham out of the LNC and affiliation then is political and agenda driven. If this becomes the case, then any group in any state can simply claim to be the rightful affiliate and the LNC could simply confer them to be the rightful affiliate group based only on the whims of the current LNC political agenda. In my mind if this becomes the method the LNC chooses, there is then no faster process to completely and utterly destroy the LNC and the Libertarian movement.

  85. Robert Capozzi

    109 Nobody: They cannot revoke affiliation because they don’t like the chair, or disagree with state party bylaws, or for political agenda and whims of the current ruling governing group.

    me: It seems to drip with irony that you call yourself “Nobody reads anymore.” You make this charge, yet apparently you didn’t read the LNC ExComm’s statement: “Based upon the available evidence, the Executive Committee of the Libertarian National Committee recognizes as the officers of the Libertarian Party of Oregon those people elected by the State Committee during its meeting on May 21, 2011.”

    It says nothing whatsoever about likes or dislikes of people or their politics. It appears you are inventing things that aren’t there. If they are, where for art they, Romeo?

    Of course, CM’s point — which I raised early on as well — that it seems odd and inappropriate for ExComm to take this action, makes this mess messier.

  86. Brian Holtz

    There seems to be a hole in the bylaws here. What should happen when it’s no longer the case that 3/4 of the LNC can agree on what leadership/bylaws to recognize for an affiliate? E.g., who should be on the state chairs list, who gets to vote on the regional LNC rep, and what should lp.org link to?

    Note that http://www.lp.org/states/Oregon currently does not point to any affiliate web site.

  87. George Phillies

    @111
    the bylaws of a state are none of the LNCs business, in terms of teh’which do we recognize’. A competent LNC would ask in case of dissent which leadership was doing what substantively.

    The State Chairs are *supposed to be* a totally independent group, unconnected with the LNC.

    Thank you for noting that /Oregon no long point to anything.

  88. George Phillies

    “Both groups want to access the resources of ballot access in Oregon, recognition by the national Libertarian Party, and seating at the upcoming national convention.”

    The LNC has no effect on ballot access. They were stupid enough to think they did in 2000, and they have done it again. I believe it is correct that the Libertarian Party of Oregon thinks it is entitled under LPUS bylaws to continue to be the affiliate, but they are also prepared to be he affiliate of another national libertarian party.

  89. Brian Holtz

    The LNC interest in affiliate bylaws is established by LPUS bylaw 6.2: “Affiliate party status shall be granted only to those organizations which adopt the Statement of Principles and file a copy of their Constitution and/or Bylaws with the Party Secretary.”

    The LNC interest in who affiliate chairs are is established by LPUS bylaw 8.8: “The voting procedure for the removal and replacement of regional representatives shall be determined by the regions. In the absence of any such procedures, a majority vote of the state chairs shall prevail.”

    I didn’t ask what criteria the LNC should use to decide among competing claimants to leadership of an affiliate. I instead asked what should happen if we fall through the hole in our bylaws that opens when it’s no longer the case that 3/4 of the LNC can agree on who leads an affiliate.

  90. Nobody reads anymore

    @ Brian Holtz

    Where in the LNC bylaws do you read that the LNC gets to decide the State Parties Bylaws and confirm its leadership?

    I await your answer.

  91. George Phillies

    @116

    Mercifully,it’s not ‘no longer agree’ it’s ‘vote to change’

    @118 We are happy at the good news, whatever it is.

    The ‘vote to change regional representative’ is only significant if there is a vote, though I would expect that if the Wagner leadership has its recognition restored that Oregon will be making a vigorous effort to send Mr. Karlan on his way.

    As a practical matter, you may want to consider that as a member of the Judicial Committee you may want to consider whether you are obliged to bite your tongue until the other sides in this matter speak up.

    Handing control of the membership of the State chairs list over to someone who was not a state chair was not blindingly brilliant.

  92. George Phillies

    @116

    With respect to 6.2, I am somehow confident that affiliate status was only granted to state parties that filed their bylaws when they were granted affiliate status, which in most cases happened during the Nixon, Ford, or Carter administrations. Also, given the transmissions from the National Director to the LNC on the state of the archive storage — given him money for shelves and filing cabinets; it will pay off in the long run, not to mention ‘Harry Browne is did, you can safely use his books for premiums again’–it is not obvious that those documents have been preserved someplace.

  93. Robert Capozzi

    117 nobody: Where in the LNC bylaws do you read that the LNC gets to decide the State Parties Bylaws and confirm its leadership?

    me: Looks like Excomm, at least, makes no such claim. They are deciding who they recognize, though. You do see the difference in the words “decide” and “recognize”, yes?

  94. Nobody reads anymore

    When Brian Holtz, a LNC Judicial Committee Member, was asked about where the LNC gets to decide the State Parties Bylaws and confirm its leadership, he replies in a odd sort of way, “the same place I read in the LPUS (not LNC) bylaws that I’ve stopped beating my wife.”

    This reader wonders exactly what is going on? Does the rest of the LNC Judicial Committee share the same view of the Bylaws as Brian Holtz?

    This sort of reply raises concerns about the integrity of the process and the character of those involved in what appears to be a serious issue.

    From what I read of the LNC or LPUS bylaws, it appears to me that they took great care and effort to write them. I also see that this organization has been around for a long time, 30+ years! This is not some spur of the moment political uprising like what the Reform Party was, rather it is a political movement with a lot of people who have invested a lot of time.

    I hope it is understandable to my fellow readers as to why I am a surprised by Brian’s remark and now a bit concern about the entire process.

  95. Robert Capozzi

    122 mhw, no and no, sorry, I can’t agree. Imagine if a gang seized control of a state LP and its assets. Should the LNC recognize the gang that holds the membership list?

  96. Nobody reads anymore

    @Robert Capozzi 122
    The sort of “word weaseling” you are engaged in is only showing your true character: “decide” and “recognize” is the same thing!

    Though I don’t know you, I do want to ask what relationship, if any, you have with the LNC?

  97. Brian Holtz

    @119 “Vote to change” begs a question that the JudCom might imminently be asked to decide, so I indeed won’t debate the merits of it — except to note that a recognition of the 2009 status quo is a curious sort of “change”. 🙂

    Your construction “good news…” fallaciously assumes there is some fact of the matter about which there is “news”, and thus arrives conveniently pre-rebutted.

    I’m glad we (apparently) agree that the LNC has a bylaws-derived duty to track who are the chairs of its affiliates. QED.

  98. Nobody reads anymore

    Brian Holtz 126 says
    “I’m glad we (apparently) agree that the LNC has a bylaws-derived duty to track who are the chairs of its affiliates. QED.”

    BUT, where does the LNC bylaws give the authority to itself to choose who the chair of the affiliate party or decide what bylaws the party has. I have looked and I cannot find any such language. All that I see is that the State Parties are autonomous.

    ARTICLE 6: AFFILIATE PARTIES
    5. The autonomy of the affiliate and sub-affiliate parties shall not be abridged by the
    National Committee or any other committee of the Party, except as provided by these
    Bylaws.

    If there are other bylaws that speak to the authority of the LNC over State Parties, please point them out.

  99. Robert Capozzi

    125 nobody, I have no relationship with the LNC. I’ve met perhaps 8 of them, know none of them well.

    No, I’d have to say my statement is quite forthright, they are NOT the same thing at all. They’re quite different, particularly in the mechanics. If a coup was attempted, whereby one group claimed to be the legitimate state committee, and the LNC sees the coup for what it is, they are not “deciding” who the state committee is, they simply are not “recognizing” the coup participants. That’s a big difference in my book.

    Unlike you, however, I won’t attempt to assess your character, pseudonym or not. It’s absurd to assess another’s character based on an instance of word usage, IMO. I assume you’re a “child of God” doing the best you can. We just use the language a bit differently, I guess.

    Notice, btw, that I remain skeptical that the Excomm was the appropriate body for this “decision” about “recognition.”

  100. Nobody reads anymore

    @Robert Capozzi 128-129
    I would be curious if you can sum up exactly what you think has happened with the Oregon Party and with the LNC Excomm.

    And, I be curious as to why you interpret Article 6, section 3 to mean the LNC can choose a State Parties chair and Bylaws.

  101. Brian Holtz

    NobodyReads, if you had read @118, you should know that I’m claiming that you’re begging a question — the one I mentioned @126, and that I can’t debate here for the reasons I gave there. Nobody reads, indeed.

    I wonder if any discussants here could pass an ideological turing test on this topic.

  102. Nobody reads anymore

    @Brian Holtz

    The fallacy of petitio principii, or “begging the question”, is committed “when a proposition which requires proof is assumed without proof”

    So then if I am to read 116 correctly then you are assuming that the LNC and the State Parties are in a Federation where the LNC and its bylaws are supreme to the State Byalws and the States are subordinate to the LNC.

    Am I wrong?

  103. Robert Capozzi

    130 nobody, sure. Two groups in the LPO claim to be the state committee. The national bylaws say “There shall be no more than one state-level affiliate party in any one state.”

    Now, excomm, on behalf of the LNC, has chosen to recognize one of the two groups.

    No need to get embroiled in the weeds. To the extent the weeds need exploration, the Excomm and Chuck Moulton have looked into it further.

    From the discussions on IPR, no one has taken a saner view than Moulton, who has a track record for intra-L procedural sanity.

    Hope that helps. Hope that doesn’t cast me further down your Dante’s Inferno of character hell in your mind.

    I sleep very, very well, thank you! 😉

  104. Chuck Moulton

    Brian Holtz wrote (@116):

    The LNC interest in affiliate bylaws is established by LPUS bylaw 6.2: “Affiliate party status shall be granted only to those organizations which adopt the Statement of Principles and file a copy of their Constitution and/or Bylaws with the Party Secretary.”

    Brian Holtz wrote (@116):

    The LNC interest in who affiliate chairs are is established by LPUS bylaw 8.8: “The voting procedure for the removal and replacement of regional representatives shall be determined by the regions. In the absence of any such procedures, a majority vote of the state chairs shall prevail.”

    Yes, the LNC has an interest in knowing what the affiliate bylaws are and who the affiliate chairs are. Affiliates have a duty to provide that information to the LNC. The duty is to provide the info on an ongoing updated basis — not just when an affiliate is first chartered.

    Bylaw 6.5 makes clear though that affiliates retain autonomy. The LNC should accept whatever bylaws updates or new officers an affiliate sends.

    This is a case where two different entities claim to be the affiliate. They have different bylaws, different membership, and different officers. The LNC should recognize one over the other through an affiliation/disaffiliation vote threshold.

    Brian Holtz wrote (@116):

    I didn’t ask what criteria the LNC should use to decide among competing claimants to leadership of an affiliate. I instead asked what should happen if we fall through the hole in our bylaws that opens when it’s no longer the case that 3/4 of the LNC can agree on who leads an affiliate.

    That is an interesting question and is indeed a possible defect in the bylaws. However, I consider it to be nothing more than a hypothetical. Given what has been leaked so far about the LNC’s deliberations on these matters, I’m fairly confident if the LNC actually voted that one side would meet the 3/4 threshold. The LNC has been avoiding such a vote hoping the matter would sort itself out on its own. (I’m sympathetic to such restraint.)

    Unfortunately nature abhors a vacuum, so others have stepped forward to fill the void and wrongly assert the power to decide the matter while the LNC refrains from acting.

    This is similar to Congress wanting to equivocate on the debt ceiling vote or declarations of war and unconstitutionally ceding more and more power to the executive branch. If the LNC doesn’t grow a pair soon and slap the EC and the officers back in line, this precedent will be used to make future LNCs increasingly impotent.

    Even if the LNC agrees with the decisions made by the secretary and the EC (and I think they will), procedurally the LNC is the entity that needs to vote on disaffiliation under the bylaws.

    Brian, I respect your opinions and logic on this matter, but a judicial committee member commenting publicly on an issue that is bound to come before that body in short order will just give fodder to opponents who will cry foul or demand recusal. Although it is admirable when people put their real names in front of comments instead of using pseudonyms, perhaps this is one of the rare cases in which anonymity would be preferable.

  105. Brian Holtz

    I’m pretty sure that the only comment I’ve made on the substance of this case is just to quote two lines from the LPUS bylaws and point out that they make textual mentions of 1) affiliate party bylaws and 2) affiliate party chairs.

    When I first came here (@111) to ask a question and report a fact, I didn’t expect to be confronted with misinformation that could so easily be corrected by quoting the bylaws, and so I couldn’t resist. But I’ll continue to decline to engage in advocacy about this case, and to avoid territory like Nick strayed into @3.

    For my thoughts on JudCom transparency, see this 2010 email to my fellow JudCom members.

  106. Robert Capozzi

    76 gp: The Bylaw you quote says there can be only one affiliate. Absolutely no one claims there were two *affiliates*.

    136 cm: This is a case where two different entities claim to be the affiliate. [emphasis added] They have different bylaws, different membership, and different officers. The LNC should recognize one over the other through an affiliation/disaffiliation vote threshold.

    me: George, I know you feel I’m sometimes a “functional illiterate,” and I admit that, stipulating that I know no one who isn’t now and then. But it sure reads to me that Moulton is saying the same thing I am, in effect. Now, I’m sure Moulton is also on occasion a “functional illiterate,” too. But, he is also a former LNC Vice Chair, JD and member of the bar, candidate for a PhD in Economics at GMU.

    I can’t say I’ve ever once seen YOU admit to a mistake or even an overstatement (e.g., narcing, flipping out over the word “limo”). But, this time, your hand certainly appears to be in the cookie jar.

    Why not just admit a mistake on this small one? You might find that confession is indeed good for the soul, liberating, even! 😉

    Yes, you can avoid it, hoping it will go away.

    Or, you can attempt to distract, perhaps with a screed of angry, yet oblique, non sequiturs.

    Again, just in case there’s a question, you wrote “no one.” Two (at least) is not “no one.” Is “no one” at minimum an overstatement? I’ll let the jury decide, but I admit to feeling mighty confident.

  107. Steven R Linnabary

    This could be an interesting debate. If one side or the other was actually DOING the work of running a state political party.

    AFAIK, neither faction has ever sent a news release of a topic dear to the voters of Oregon. Neither faction is recruiting candidates.

    Indeed, I’m not even sure if the two factions together can create a complete delegation to the National Convention.

    PEACE

  108. Nicholas Sarwark

    But I’ll continue to decline to engage in advocacy about this case, and to avoid territory like Nick strayed into @3.

    You have a funny definition of advocacy. The entirety of my post, for those who don’t care to scroll:

    “Learn from history or repeat it. I guess we’ll know after Sunday which one the LNC chooses.”

  109. Brian Holtz

    To clarify, I’ll always be an advocate for the relevance of bylaws in the LP — and for the practice of charitably interpreting the words of fellow Libertarians.

    JudCom is Bill Hall (Chair), Nick Sarwark, Bob Sullentrup, Robert Latham, Lee Wrights, Judge Jim Gray, and Brian Holtz.

  110. Thomas L. Knapp

    FWIW, I trust (or rather would trust, if I was still an LP member) both Nick Sarwark and Brian Holtz, in their capacity as Judicial Committee members, to judge any issue narrowly on the basis of their understanding/interpretation of the LNC’s bylaws, regardless of their personal preferences.

    That’s not to say that I necessarily AGREE with either of them on any given matter of understanding/interpretation, but both of them tend to have a healthy respect for process independent of whether or not that process produces their preferred outcome in any given case.

  111. Robert Capozzi

    140 srl: AFAIK, neither faction has ever sent a news release of a topic dear to the voters of Oregon. Neither faction is recruiting candidates.

    me: Given the intra-L toxicity in the air, perhaps this procedural distraction renders non-recruitment a blessing at this stage in the game. Imagine Wagner and Reeves on a street corner in Portland…sign up with me!…no, sign up with me! 😉 Look, I’ve got a letter from the Sec’y of State! Look, I’ve got this statement from the national LP!

    Embarrassing….

    Sometimes, an organization needs to gather itself. LPO appears to be one such organization.

  112. Robert Capozzi

    Just curious…is Wrights conflicted on this one? He’s seeking the prez nomination. LPO has a delegation that selects the nominee.

    Can he do both impartially?

    Just curious. I’m sure he’d be as fair as he can be on JudCom….

  113. Root Stuffing

    @ 140 I’m not even sure if the two factions together can create a complete delegation to the National Convention.

    So much the better.

    More empty slots for Root delegates from Vegas.

  114. George Phillies

    I gather that there are several alterantive resolutions beyond the Judicial Committee being floated:

    *Suspension for cause of the guilty members of the National Committee
    Hinkle
    Rutherford
    Mattson
    Redpath
    Knedler
    (Lark is a regional representative; State Chair action would be needed for removal)

    *Launch an alternative national party.

    A special national convention might be a tamer alternative.

  115. Brian Holtz

    Wrights is not the kind of person who would change his opinion on a case like this just for some prospective advantage in the presidential nominating campaign.

  116. Robert Capozzi

    149 bh, oh, I agree! I didn’t mean to suggest otherwise.

    Were I Wrights, I would voluntarily recuse myself to avoid any appearance of impartiality.

    Also, were I Wrights, I’d also recuse myself because either way I vote, I am bound to alienate many, hurting my chances for securing the nomination.

    Clearly, the caliber of people on JudCom is very high, so were I Wrights, I’d not be concerned with my fellow committee colleagues or their ability to be fair and impartial.

  117. Robert Capozzi

    150 mhw, perhaps, although this all makes 1983 look like a walk in the park.

  118. Robert Capozzi

    oops, other way ’round. 1983 makes this look like a walk in the park.

    As George reminds us, sometimes I’m functionally illiterate. 😉

  119. Robert Capozzi

    156 mhw, it always makes sense to identify the inception point of dysfunction. We can play Libertarian Groundhog Dog, finding which move in an alternative universe might make a difference. We can relive February 2nd over and over and over again… This COULD be an opportunity to learn to improve, to be civil, etc. Or not.

    Where is the Andie MacDowell who’ll set this sorry-ass group of Bill Murrays right?

  120. Elephant in the Room

    Just that R. Lee Wrights vote in this J/C case could change who the delegates to a convention are where he is running for prez. That is enough of a conflict that he should not vote for this decision.

    But there is a more serious conflict than that. R. Lee Wrights lives at Mary Ruwarts house. It is reported that Mary was the only no on this vote being appealed to the J/C. R. Lee will vote however Mary wants him too, or else he risks her tossing him out of the house and revoking his financial support. Not just for his personal needs, but for his presidential campaign.

    With both conflicts, no principaled person could support R. Lee Wrights voting on this case. He will not actually consider the case fairly.

    Isn’t there some sort of rule about this? Not even the government courts allow a judge to rule a case with that kind of personal involvement. We’re supposed to be better then the government.

    If there is some other J/C case that is not about the LNC, that would be ok for him to vote. But it would be very bad judgement for him to not sit this one out.

  121. Robert Capozzi

    157 elephant, Wrights’s living arrangement is news to me. I can’t say that I find that per se conflicted, if true, but I do see your point. Potentially voting in opposition to a roommate, if true, does seem awkward but not necessarily conflicted. Potentially voting against a benefactor, if true, seems conflicted, off the top of my head.

  122. Robert Capozzi

    148 gp, those who are floating alternative resolutions might also consider drafting some resolutions to “suspend for cause” “guilty” JudCom members who vote “wrong” on this matter.

    I’d think the full NatCom will weigh in on this matter. So, ditto, the floaters should have that resolution at the ready, too.

    The purging forces can’t be too prepared. 😉

  123. R. Lee Wrights

    Re: #157

    Someone who refuses to use their real name says: “R. Lee will vote however Mary wants him too, or else he risks her tossing him out of the house and revoking his financial support. Not just for his personal needs, but for his presidential campaign.”

    The person that refuses to use their own name obviously does not know what he/she is talking about. If I was going to write something this outlandish, I’d hide my identity too.

  124. LNC Cease and Desist Letter

    Meanwhile, the LNC through its attorney has sent the LP or Oregon a cease and desist letter demanding that it stop undertaking actions inconsistent with the claims of the LNC ExComm.

    The letter has been leaked to Liberty for America magazine, and will receive major article coverage in the next issue.

    Readers will note that ‘filing an appeal with the LNC Judicial Committee’ is manifestly a action “inconsistent with … the determination of the Executive Committee that the officers of the Libertarian Party of Oregon…” are the members f the Reeves faction.

    That is, our LNC Executive Committee is now claiming that if it makes a ruling inconsistent with the bylaws, it will also send you a letter demanding that you cease and desist from appealing the decision.

  125. NEEDS NEW THREAD

    Leave the winner of the thread length contest to rest on his laurels. [Safety warning: Do not do this. They are sharp and pointy.]

    Please give this issue a new thread.

  126. Robert Capozzi

    161 bh, I agree. Recusal triggered by false accusations by an anonymous poster WOULD be not only poor precedent, it would be poor judgment on every level I can think of.

    Recusing for actual conflicts is another matter. I assiduously avoid parliamentary wrangling and other hyper-technical procedural weeds, but as a general matter, I’d think that a judicial body would want its members to be squeaky clean, both in fact and in appearance. Whether being a candidate for nomination is conflicted, I can’t say. A case could be made either way, I suspect. I’d like to hear them…I only ask the question.

    I don’t know most of the JudCom personally, so I’d think all its members should be forthright about any conflicts they may have in this case. I trust they’ll get this one right…it seems a reasonably important matter for the LP.

    When I asked the question about whether Wrights is conflicted, I was mindful that Wrights is emblematic of certain rifts in the LP. For the record, when Wrights was (temporarily) deemed to be off the LNC for his membership lapsing a few years back, I questioned that judgment quickly and I took the position that action was poor judgment based on a hyper-technical reading of the bylaws.

    At this moment, I would say Wrights stands a good chance of being the LP’s nominee for 2012. I don’t support any of the declared candidates at this time, but I would hate to see him not receive the nomination because of his JudCom participation in this matter (admittedly an unlikely rationale). Who the LP’s nominee is in 2012 is, IMO, more important than who sits on JudCom, so I’d suggest prudence and transparency here.

  127. Robert Capozzi

    162 cease: That is, our LNC Executive Committee is now claiming that if it makes a ruling inconsistent with the bylaws, it will also send you a letter demanding that you cease and desist from appealing the decision.

    me: That would be some major chutzpah, if true. Since I’ve not seen this letter, I can’t begin to assess your claims here. Is this letter seeking what you say (no appeals!), or only that Wagner’s group stop making false and unfounded accusations when pressing an appeal. There’s a difference, yes?

  128. Robert Capozzi

    Reading the bylaws this morning, and I’m wondering whether the Excomm is taking the view that they’ve not “revoked” the Wagner-led-claimants on the LPO, but rather simply “recognized” the Reeves-led-claimants. If so, then Excomm might further claim that since there was no “disaffiliation,” this matter is not one for JudCom.

    On its face, that one would be a BIG mistake. It might be technically defensible, but clearly there is a question of standing and legitimacy. It’s not a slam dunk that I can see. JudCom should take the “case.”

    If JudCom does not grant its “writ of certiorari” on this one, I suspect the ill will alone could be devastating. Yes, it might be that Excomm merely “recognized” the Reeves-led LPO, and in many ways they did, but to not entertain the Wagner-led LPO’s case would be contemptuous.

    Perhaps I’ve got this scoped properly, perhaps not. Dunno. Then again, I’m not a legalistic weeds guy…

  129. Steven R Linnabary

    Given the intra-L toxicity in the air, perhaps this procedural distraction renders non-recruitment a blessing at this stage in the game. Imagine Wagner and Reeves on a street corner in Portland…sign up with me!…no, sign up with me! Look, I’ve got a letter from the Sec’y of State! Look, I’ve got this statement from the national LP!

    Embarrassing….

    Dunno…republicans have factional disputes between Paulians and neocons, democrats have factional disputes between progressives, blue dogs and LaRouchies (granted, that one IS embarrassing!!). There are probably other less obvious factions in both of those parties. And those disputes are many times left to the voters and members to sort out or guide their parties.

    A little competition could be a good thing for the party. Certainly not worth the navel gazing that is going on here.

    IMHO, the state party should sort this out amongst themselves. I don’t think it is worth the effort of NatCom to waste their time deciding which faction should be anointed to sit on their hands. THIS is what is “embarrassing”.

    PEACE

  130. paulie

    urbandictionary.com term of the day:

    July 23: AFU

    Short for “All Fucked Up”. Meaning usually some thing or situation that is messed up, broken, disorganized, or failed.

    We can’t take my car, I got in a wreck and it’s AFU.

    After the earthquake the subway was AFU.

  131. Robert Capozzi

    168 srl: republicans have factional disputes…

    me: Yes, they do. But I don’t believe the analogy holds, at least for me. The Rs and Ds routinely elect people and make law. Ls don’t. On very rare occasions, Rs and Ds have things in the direction of LPO’s dysfunction, e.g., contested state party leadership. Whether theirs is this deep is immaterial to diagnosing this AFU situation, IMO.

    The Rs and Ds also have a LOT more resources to sort this sort of thing out. L resources are scant.

    Whether a state LP’s delegation is eligible to participate in the national party IS the LNC’s business, so I guess we disagree. Waiting for a floor fight in Vegas next year seems like a REAL bad idea, but, again, people can disagree.

    This wheel is turning, regardless. It is what it is.

    Peace, indeed.

  132. Steven R Linnabary

    Waiting for a floor fight in Vegas next year seems like a REAL bad idea, but, again, people can disagree.

    lol

    When has there EVER been a LP National Convention without controversy, intrigue and lot’s of floor fights? We’re Libertarians, it’s what we do. Sometimes just to be contrarian.

    I just think the two LPO factions should be seeking the affections of the people they represent. Not the affections of the LNC.

    PEACE

  133. Robert Capozzi

    171 srl, glad to have gladdened your day! 😉

    Let me get this straight: Because some Ls are contrarian just to be contrarian, those who are interested in advancing liberty should tolerate the childish antics? Am I in the neighborhood?

    Not buying it, if so.

    I see no evidence that Wagner is seeking affections of the LNC, or Reeves, for that matter. Wagner seems to be engaged in the opposite, near as I can tell.

    Perhaps you have some inside information that leads you to conclude that. Do you?

  134. If you want the full article

    I am old enough to remember the last really serious intraparty dispute in a major party, involving the Northern Democrats and the Southern Democrats, which led to Governor Wallace’s Presidential campaigns.

  135. George Phillies

    I will by and by be circulating to LNC motions draft motions to suspend against the accessible and offending members of the LNC. Mind you, I do not expect that there are enough votes on the LNC, yet, for the motion to pass, but the alternatives are even less fortunate.

  136. Kevin Knedler

    There you go again.
    While some are consumed by controversy, I want to see this party get to the next level, with a fresh look at the organization structure. That should give you guys something to ponder. How about building an orgazination for the 21st century that can drive home the message of liberty. Ultimately, I would hope we all want nearly the same thing. It is the pathway that is the issue.
    And when I talk about organization, I mean at the national level. Not to mention the state affiliates need HELP with services in the area of IT, database, campaign training, leadership training, etc. The LSLA event in August in Columbus will hopefully be inline with my brief comments above.

    LNC At-Large Member
    LNC Executive Committee Member
    LP national convention committee member
    Ohio Executive Committee Chair

    And damn passionate that the national party and state parties need to raise the bar on performance, get better organized, and win elections. If you are not sure about my comments, just ask an Ohio member. This isn’t some ice cream social my friends.
    KJK

  137. R. Lee Wrights

    Re: #161

    Mr. Holtz asks nicely: “Please do not set a precedent by letting an anonymous mudslinger goad you into recusing yourself.”

    Surely you know me better than that. 😉

  138. LibertarianGirl

    I wont sign anything calling for the suspension of Mark Hinkle , the man follows what he believes is the letter of the rules , he IS NOT beholden to 1 particular group…let us not forget who gave his strongest nominating speech … NOLAN. Hinkle , IMO , is a true neutral in as much as it directs his decision making , his personal feelings he keeps to himself and doesnt let it affect his decision making. We may not like that all the time , but I for one can respect that…

  139. LibertarianGirl

    JUST FYI , I CANT FUCKING WAIT FOR THE FLOOR-FIGHT IN VEGAS… hopefully the real Libs in NV will take the state convention and have evey delegate spot , but if we dont we’re gonna need to get on in other states , I’d like to get on in Texas(becuz Lee is my candidate) or AZ ( becuz that woulda been where Nolan was)

  140. LibertarianGirl

    one final thing to say , even if Wagners folk dont win , how many freakin people are we talking about?? double your efforts and come back at the next convention and TAKE IT BACK. Start planning way ahead of time , make sure , MAKE FUCKING SURE , everyones credentials are in order ….. Keep operating a Libertarian group of some kind , recruit new people , DO NOT DRIVE THEM AWAY BY INUNDATING THEM WITH THE INTRA PARTY DRAMA , PEOPLE HATE THAT– get your kids , your friends ,new converts , be nice , let the other guys look like the assholes ,heres the clincher , i said it at thetop – BRING MORE PEOPLE THAN THEY DO TO CONVENTION AND TAKE IT BACK …no offense but the number of attendees was pretty lame , if you cant beat that next time , either side , then thats for lack of trying

  141. LibertarianGirl

    RC_Also, were I Wrights, I’d also recuse myself because either way I vote, I am bound to alienate many, hurting my chances for securing the nomination.

    me_ he should not recuse himself for that reason , that would be unprincipled to recuse for a self serving reason . Theres a reason he was elected to the Jud Com , its because people trust his impartiality and fairness. and to the Elephant and his wild ass rude claims , go fuck yourself , coward , who cant even reveal his name…( sorry for so many posts guys i been off for awhile and just now catching up)LOL

  142. LibertarianGirl

    Thanks D , we’ll have a whole shitload of people needing to get on , at least 15-20 Id say , thats if we dont take the state convention which we plan on doing…

  143. Robert Capozzi

    182 lg, yes, I hear that. If I understand the concept of recusal, the point is to avoid appearances of ulterior motives, even where none exist. When he was selected for Judcom, he wasn’t a candidate for prez.

    If I were in his shoes, I’d recuse myself. I respect any decision he makes here, though. There’s no obvious “right” answer here.

  144. Michael H. Wilson

    George I thought there was a dispute as to whether or not a quorum was needed in the first place and the pressure for the quorum came from people attending who did not live in Oregon, but where members?

    My reading of the by-laws at the time was and remains that the delegates present were a quorum if my recall is correct.

  145. Thomas L. Knapp

    Bob @ 170,

    You write:

    “Waiting for a floor fight in Vegas next year seems like a REAL bad idea”

    So does making a floor fight in Vegas next year more, rather than less, likely, which is what the executive committee seems to have done.

    There was no urgent need for the LNC or the executive committee to act at all.

    The deadline for any disaffiliation-type actions which might affect national convention delegations is months away.

    There isn’t, so far as I know, any resignation/removal situation involving the regional LNC rep that represents Oregon.

    The LNC/executive committee could have given the situation a few months to be worked out at the state level, either by reconciliation between the two factions or legal confirmation of party status by the state government, or by some other means.

    There was nothing of significance or value to the Libertarian PARTY to be lost by abstaining from action, and much — including ballot access for the LP’s 2012 presidential slate — to potentially be lost by acting in haste.

    In choosing to intervene on behalf of one of the two Oregon factions despite no immediate crisis or other compelling reason to do so, the executive committee placed the interests of its preferred faction ahead of, and may have severely damaged, the interests of the Libertarian Party.

  146. David Colborne

    @189: My understanding is that the last thing the LNC wanted was for the Secretary of State to get involved. Letting things get to that point is how you end up with LP Arizona-style situations with arbitrary people declaring themselves the “Libertarian Party” to enjoy some undeserved ballot access. I’ll also note that the LP Oregon had been unable to successfully hold a convention in several months due to an unfortunate clause in their bylaws that required a majority of all members (including lifetime members) to be present for a convention to be valid. Consequently, though the LNC didn’t have to act now, it was pretty clear that the problem wasn’t going to resolve itself anytime soon.

  147. George Phillies

    188

    Well, you would think that, and the quorum issue came from people as described, but instead of telling the out of state LNC members to take a hike, or ruling that they were wrong and letting them appeal his parliamentary ruling to the convention, the state chair (Weston) of the Wagner faction decided that the quorum claims were right. Having made that decision, well, they unfortunately agreed that they could not get a quorum.

    Many readers have explained at length that they were wrong.

  148. Michael H. Wilson

    Back in 1995 we had a situation when I was chair in Oregon and the intraparty war was going on where we had to call a convention because a U.S. senator was caught up in a sex scandal and had resigned. It was another situation where Burke’s crew has fighting to get control of the LPO. I was out of state and as soon as I got back we had a convention and I signed the paperwork. I quit soon after that because of the problems their crap was causing my wife. People were call my home and hanging up when she answered.

    The important thing here is the election issue. A U.S. Congressman, David Wu, from Oregon is involved in a sexual mess right today that may cause him to step down real soon.

    If the state calls an election to replace him how is the LPO going to respond? If the LPO does have a convention who signs the paperwork? Remember the SoS has to accept the paperwork and right now they seem to recognize Mr. Wagner, not Mr. Reeves whom apparently has been recognized by the LP Ex Comm.

  149. David Colborne

    As for the topic in general, hey, I understand where Wagner’s coming from. I’ve been on the losing end of a few (okay, most) battles here in Nevada. It’s unpleasant, it’s discouraging, and it’s annoying. But, every time I’ve lost a battle, it was eminently preventable if I just put in a little more time, a little more effort, and cleaned up after myself a little better. The Oregon situation isn’t any different, and here’s why:

    The last time the membership successfully met and was able to conduct business was in March of 2010, where the party adopted a plan for reformation. Ultimately that plan was unable to be executed by the membership at the most recent November 2010 special convention, nor the recent regular convention in March of 2011.

    […]

    Oregon voters will have an opportunity to ratify this new governing structure during the 2012 primary election cycle. Should they ultimately reject it, the previous governing structure will be restored, which includes: a Judicial Committee that has only one member, cannot meet, and cannot reach quorum; a membership that is unable to meet at convention due to an inability to achieve quorum; suspect bylaws that have still not been reconciled against minutes which have not been approved due to questionable accuracy; county party affiliates that cannot be represented due to technical deficiencies that cannot be remedied; a dues structure that has raised legal doubts; the ability for non-libertarians to participate which also raises questions of legality; and other numerous issues.

    So, in short, Oregon had poorly written and questionably implemented bylaws that ultimately allowed the state party to paralyze itself for a year and ultimately split itself apart. Guess what? There’s no clean solution to that. Bylaws are supposed to be followed to the letter regardless of merit or popularity (that’s straight from Robert’s, I’m sorry to say), so, when they’re not internally consistent, the result is often a broken organization that has to do a wipe and restart to get itself back to functioning order. Unfortunately, there’s no good way to do that, and Oregon’s “solutions” proved that. One group used a set of loopholes to reconstitute an Executive Committee and call themselves the “Libertarian Party or Oregon”. The other group used a different set of loopholes to declare the bylaws weren’t valid in the first place, create a State Committee with three voting persons (seriously, check it out) and go their own way. The LP decided to recognize the side that still paid lip service to their bylaws on technical grounds. It’s as good of criteria as any in a situation like this.

    Having said that, if I lived in Oregon, I’d be mad as hell. I’d be mad that my state LP let itself get into this position. I’d be mad that the national LP felt my state party was such a mess that it needed outside intervention to set itself straight and acted accordingly. I’d be mad that there were two groups of libertarians in my state that were far more interested in dick-measuring bylaws and parliamentary procedure contests than actually bringing in recruits and supporters, fielding candidates, and winning elections. Most of all, I’d be mad that every single libertarian Tom, Dick, and Harry on the internet felt like using my state party’s collapse as an illustration of some harebrained scheme involving “radical troublemakers” or “neocon usurpers”.

    Maybe, just maybe, not every LP issue is a black and white affair with only two sides to consider. You’d think a party that campaigns on the strength and wisdom of the Nolan Chart would be more sensitive to that.

  150. Wes Wagner

    MW @194

    Under the bylaws of the LPO we can either call a special convention (if time permits under state law) or if not the committee has to select a candidate.

    I would suspect that time would permit a nominating convention since state law only requires 10 days notice.

    We would be able to post a candidate for Wu’s district and the SoS would accept paperwork signed by me. There is no risk that the libertarian electors of Oregon would be unable to respond, in spite of the LNC ex-comm’s best efforts.

    I know at least one person who would be chomping at the bit for such an opportunity to run for Wu’s seat, but I am sure there would be more.

  151. Michael H. Wilson

    Wes, not to be too sarcastic, but doesn’t the LPN ExComm claim you are not the Chair? So if you sign the paperwork what is the LPN ExComm going to do? Are they going to have to withdraw their decision and say it didn’t happen?

  152. Wes Wagner

    DC @ 195

    “three voting persons” ? … We have a 9 member board and 8 are highly active. One is having some medical issues. We also have a non-voting functional secretary.

    I don’t know exactly where you get this idea, but you seem to be reaching to find fault where it does not exist.

    Our minutes are on the website for registered members under the documents section but do not appear just for the general public.

  153. Wes Wagner

    MW@197

    The LNC Ex-comm can think that a rock will turn into a loaf of bread, and if they think that hard enough, it still won’t transform.

  154. Michael H. Wilson

    Let me point out that one of the people involved in this was at one time an alternate on the LNC and I believe that person was asked to resign.

    Someone may want to look into that issue and ask what was going on then and why. From a management point of view it might be worth looking into.

  155. Wes Wagner

    MW@200

    If one were to get into the credentials and histories of the people involved in the faction that does not have state recognition, you wold find many very interesting things indeed.

    At this point in time, however, we are focused on the technical merits of the situation.

  156. David Colborne

    @198: You’re right. My brain saw the “non-voting directors” part and, for whatever reason, decided all of your non-officer directors were “non-voting” and reacted accordingly. I apologize for the failure in reading comprehension on this side of the keyboard.

  157. Thomas L. Knapp

    David @ 190,

    You write:

    “My understanding is that the last thing the LNC wanted was for the Secretary of State to get involved.”

    And the last thing people in hell want is for the icewater to run out … but it’s going to happen whether they want it or not.

    As a matter of fact, it’s not a matter of “getting” involved — Oregon’s Secretary of State inherently IS involved.

    Political parties are organized under state elections laws.

    Whichever group the state of Oregon says is the Oregon LP is the Oregon LP, period, end of story. The LNC has no control over, or even any say in, that matter.

    The only control the LNC has is whether or not the Oregon LP will be an affiliate of the LNC, and thus bound to the LNC’s chosen presidential ticket.

    Absent any compelling reason to act otherwise — e.g. the legally recognized Oregon LP failing to meet one of the LNC bylaws requirements like endorsing the LP Statement of Principles, or violating one of the LNC bylaws provisions by, say, endorsing a candidate of another party — The LNC would have been wise to wait for Oregon to decide which organization is the Oregon Libertarian Party, then as a matter of course recognize that organization as its affiliate.

  158. Robert Capozzi

    189 tk: There was nothing of significance or value to the Libertarian PARTY to be lost by abstaining from action, and much — including ballot access for the LP’s 2012 presidential slate — to potentially be lost by acting in haste.

    me: I trust you agree that this is your opinion, not fact. My opinion differs. Collectively, Excomm’s opinion differs. My opinion differs from Excomm’s in that 1) I do agree with Moulton that they could have waited til the next LNC, and 2) I have no opinion on whether Wagner or Reeves should be recognized as chair.

    We all have lots of opinions. Opinions are never “right,” they’re just opinions, yet opinions move the world.

    I’d say that’s a fact, near as I can tell.

  159. Darryl W. Perry

    As Chair of the Boston Tea Party National Committee, I invite the Oregon group that does NOT receive LNC recognition to seek affiliate status with the BTP.

  160. Wes Wagner

    TK@203

    The last time anyone from the Secretary of State’s office has contacted me regarding this matters was on June 2nd.

    “Wes,

    Attached are most of the documents that they filed. The only document that I am not forwarding, because it is not disclosable as a public record, is their bank account information.

    Additionally at this time we have informed Carla Pealer and Richard Burke that we are unable to process any changes without written approval from the current chair of record of the Libertarian Party of Oregon that they are authorized to make these changes.

    Summer”

  161. Robert Capozzi

    203 tk: Political parties are organized under state elections laws. Whichever group the state of Oregon says is the Oregon LP is the Oregon LP, period, end of story.

    me: Extraordinary! Really? IYO, I trust. The advocate of statelessness says this…

  162. George Phillies

    The LNC was, say extremely reliable sources, not informed that the cease-and-desist-letter was going to be sent, prior to its being sent.

    I am in receipt of facially credible evidence that the LNC ExComm did not know about it either.

  163. Brian Holtz

    @203 I second the idea that all parties remain “focused on the technical merits of the situation”. Whenever one side attacks the character of the other, they invite the inference that their case is weak on the merits.

    @162 I saw nothing in the cease and desist letter that suggested that any LP member should consider himself to be alienated from his right to appeal to the Judicial Committee under the Bylaws.

    Remember the 11th Commandment: “When speaking of a fellow self-described lover of liberty, thou shalt ascribe the best possible motives that are consistent with the evidence.”

  164. Michael H. Wilson

    Brian this has been going on in the LPO for some years, 15 maybe 20. It would help to solve the problem if someone took time to understand what the motivation is for someone to involve themselves in these sorts of activities.

    Knowing why is something someone should always ask, or at least that is what I learned as a manager.

  165. George Phillies

    @203

    The LNC is, however, not required to identify the state-recognized party as their affiliate. They could recognize another group, realizing that they then need to work on ballot access. In fact, they did this in Arizona a dozen years ago.

  166. Thomas L. Knapp

    RC@208,

    You write:

    “203 tk: Political parties are organized under state elections laws. Whichever group the state of Oregon says is the Oregon LP is the Oregon LP, period, end of story.

    me: Extraordinary! Really? IYO, I trust.”

    I guess it depends on what you mean by opinion.

    Yes, it is possible that I’m actually just a piece of software running in an arbitrary matrix, or a disembodied brain in a vat having arbitrary input sent to me by electrodes to fool me as to the nature of reality.

    However, absent such possibilities, in the arena that I and most of the people I think exist and are around me in, which we call “reality,” no, it’s not a matter of opinion, it is a matter of cold, hard, factual reality.

    Elections are state activities for the purpose of selecting state officials.

    The purpose of political parties is to participate in those activities, and beginning in the late 19th century in the United States, both the federal state and the several states began to co-opt political parties, both de facto and de jure, into the role of state organizations.

    It started with ballot access laws, e.g. the Australian ballot, and it proceeded from there to very detailed statutes defining political parties, decreeing how they are to be organized, and allowing for ballot access only to the extent that the parties conform to those definitions and organizational requirements.

    By declaring itself a political party and participating in elections, the Libertarian Parties have long de facto, and in most cases de jure, accepted that fact of reality as a fact of reality.

    Occasionally, a Libertarian Party (either one of the state LPs or the national committee with which state LPs have historically chosen to affiliate) will challenge some detail of that state co-option in court — seeking equitable ballot access requirements, for example, or to insulate the party from what it considers onerous requirements regarding selection of candidates (primaries versus caucuses, open primaries versus closed, etc.).

    In some other cases, some LP officials will, after having jumped through statutory hoops to become a state organization so that they can can participate in state elections for the selection of state officials, will haughtily declare that no, the LP is a “private organization” which is somehow magically simultaneously entitled to the benefits of, but not bound by the rules of, being a state organization. The next time that works will be the first time.

    “The advocate of statelessness says this…”

    I’m an advocate of statelessness because I understand the state and how it works.

  167. Robert Capozzi

    210 bh : Whenever one side attacks the character of the other, they invite the inference that their case is weak on the merits.

    Me: Winning!

    213 tk: Elections are state activities for the purpose of selecting state officials.

    Me: Setting aside radically epistemological inquiry, on its face, this is a half truth. Some elections are federal in nature. State election law is subject to federal law.

    Pulling the lens back on our “shared (perceived) reality,” a political party’s purpose is to advance ideas and to run for offices to change or maintain the current set of laws. In the US, we have a national law system, with some law-making powers delegated to the states.

    Libertarians have organized as “Libertarian parties.” As a matter of convenience, we happen to have 50 or so LPs chartered by states that, if they want to be part of the national umbrella, must adhere to certain things. If a state LP uses state law to misrepresent to the state election law authorities that they are the rightful state LP in that jurisdiction, I would say, no, they are not THE LP in that state. I would say they have tricked the state regulator, who probably isn’t paying all that much attention to the LP in the first place, yes? LPs are likely afterthoughts for most state attorneys general. It’s no surprise, then, that state attorneys general are prone to rubber-stamp/make mistakes regarding the legal standing in a state, and that these mistakes are reversible. Possessing a piece of paper “proves” nothing, except that the piece of paper say X, not Y.

    I don’t have an opinion on whether trickery/inappropriate action was done in LPO. It’s the LNC’s job to police the standards of the affiliates. They’ve now said Wagner’s crew has attempted usurp the legal entity LPO, in effect. They don’t recognize Wagner as chair.

    It’s like a franchise. If, say, the Seattle Seahawks owners lose the team to the Russian mob in a poker game, and the mob tells the Seahawks players, you no longer will play with helmets. Yes, the mob can say that, but the NFL can disaffiliate the Seahawks. Or the NFL can use its rules to maneuver the old ownership back into control. The NFL will do what it views as in the best interests of the league as a whole.

    I realize that my premise – that the US is a nation – is not accepted by some, especially those who buy into revisionism, which, for the most part, I don’t. I would note that when SC seceded, half the population could not vote – they were slaves. (It’s not a stretch to say that had the slaves been able to vote, secession would not have happened.) Piercing a legal fiction can go a lot of different ways, I admit. But this analogy works for me. When those with the levers of state power in SC in 1860 CLAIMED that they’d “seceded,” the feds never recognized it. This unfortunate fact set led to an even more unfortunate fact set – full blown disharmony and many deaths.

    Obviously, the situation in LPO is not nearly as grave. But, at the moment, Excomm is playing Buchanan, and then Lincoln. Wagner is playing Jefferson Davis. What concerns me is that Wagner seems unwilling to admit it’s possible that his associates have usurped the LPO and that it in fact IS the LNC’s business who the Oregon delegation is and how they were recognized as the legitimate representatives of the LPO, or not.

    I’d love to see a peaceful resolution to this mess.

  168. Robert Capozzi

    211 mhw: Knowing why is something someone should always ask, or at least that is what I learned as a manager.

    me: Can’t say I disagree. Why someone has a grievance is certainly something to be mindful of. Grievances, however, never justify anger, hostility or malice.

    I feel for you if you got a lot of phone hang-ups 15 years ago. Irritating! Perhaps that was Reeves or his associates. Perhaps it wasn’t.

    IF you are maintaining that uncivil behavior in the 90s justifies uncivil behavior in the ’10s, lay it out. Tell us WHY uncivil behavior is EVER justified.

    For a manager, context is important, I agree, btw. But, from a first things first perspective, the first thing to do is restore civility. If you feel otherwise, tell us why pouring gasoline on a fire makes sense to you.

  169. Kevin Knedler

    @ 181. Yes you are correct. It is a competition.
    Sell the message, get people to buy-into it, and then get the votes necessary. Just follow the rules.

    KJK

  170. Michael H. Wilson

    re Kevin @ 216, but that is a great idea, but I found it damn near impossible to get an accurate list of members when I was in the LPO and Chair of the county party. Good luck with that one.

  171. Thomas L. Knapp

    RC @ 214,

    “213 tk: Elections are state activities for the purpose of selecting state officials.

    Me: Setting aside radically epistemological inquiry, on its face, this is a half truth. Some elections are federal in nature. State election law is subject to federal law.”

    My use of the word “state” in the above may have been confusing. I’m not referring to the distinction between sub-units of the United States, but to states as such — of which the federal government is one.

    The rest of your response seems to rest on the assumption that the genuineness of a state Libertarian Party bears some relation to its relationship with the Libertarian National Committee — that it is, as you put it, sort of like a franchise, in which some central entity disposes of the right to use its name, etc.

    In fact, something approximating the opposite is true.

    A state (this time in the sense of “the several states composing the United States”) Libertarian Party is a Libertarian Party whether it’s affiliated with the LNC or not.

    The LNC’s legitimacy as “the national umbrella” of Libertarian Parties is entirely dependent upon whether or not state LPs choose to affiliate, and remain affiliated, with it. The LNC did not invent the brand, nor does the LNC own the brand.

  172. Robert Capozzi

    218 mhw, yes, those who perceive themselves as victims often take that stance, in my experience. So far, you’ve only shared what I consider to be grievances.

    Is Reeves an ax murderer or something? 😉

  173. Robert Capozzi

    219 tk: The LNC’s legitimacy as “the national umbrella” of Libertarian Parties is entirely dependent upon whether or not state LPs choose to affiliate, and remain affiliated, with it. The LNC did not invent the brand, nor does the LNC own the brand.

    me: Perhaps that’s so, legally and technically. It could be that Wagner will prevail in a legal showdown, and run LPO as THE LPO, unaffiliated with the LNC.

    How that advances liberty in OR or the US is beyond me. A single state LP seems futile to me, but then perhaps Wagner or WY’s Country Party could come up with some strategic breakthrough that will be wildly successful. I’m highly skeptical, as I suspect most voters think of themselves as “Americans” first, residing in a state. For a third party to be credible, I suspect being perceived as a NATIONAL party has some network effects that go beyond political stances and attractive candidates. This is especially the case when other states ALSO have LPs. Brand confusion seems highly likely in this scenario.

    Wagner may want to exercise a nuclear option. I wish he wouldn’t. I am pleased that they are not SO Jefferson Davis as to not even bother with JudCom….

  174. Michael H. Wilson

    Robert I don’t know Mr. Reeves and have no complaint about or with him. It seems to me that you have little knowledge of the past event, and you don’t really care to ask or try to understand what has happened over the years.

  175. Robert Capozzi

    222 mhw, sorry, I have asked you before and do so again. So far, all I’ve heard about is phone hangs and vague grievances about administrative matters.

    Bloodless coups, seceding, narcing to the FEC are all things that COULD be justified as a last resort, IMO.

  176. Thomas L. Knapp

    RC@221,

    You write:

    “It could be that Wagner will prevail in a legal showdown, and run LPO as THE LPO, unaffiliated with the LNC. How that advances liberty in OR or the US is beyond me. … Wagner may want to exercise a nuclear option. I wish he wouldn’t.”

    It’s nice to “wish” he wouldn’t — but the argument we’re having is whether or not the executive committee should have invited, nay, baited him to do so by jumping to hastily intervene in a state-party argument that:

    1) Wasn’t, in its details proper, really any of the LNC’s business; and

    2) Was probably AT LEAST several months away from posing any serious problems for the LNC to solve absent said intervention.

    The executive committee’s operating approach to this situation comes down to “it ain’t broke yet, so let’s take a sledgehammer to it, being careful to keep our thumb positioned between it and the hammer so as to achieve maximum damage to ourselves.”

  177. Robert Capozzi

    224 tk, we’ve established that our judgments differ as to whether it’s the LNC’s business. We agree that Excomm appears to be acting hastily.

    But, let’s say we could channel Allah, and Allah agrees with you: Wagner’s being baited, taunted.

    My guess is that Allah would ALSO counsel Wagner NOT to exercise the nuclear option. Allah would say: My Brother, you are the bigger man. There is nothing to be gained by pushing that button. Infidel Reeves and the Demonic SCM will be shown to be anti-salaam, and they will reap what they have sown.

    As-Salaam-Alaikum.

  178. George Phillies

    The LNC ExComm claims to have chosen an affiliate in Oregon, not obviously in a way consistent with the own Bylaws.

    They might better have asked, after some time, OK, which group is doing anything, and chosen the effective affiliate, but they didn’t.

    The position of the Wagner group has been (i) to file an appeal to the Judicial Committee noting extensive asserted procedural violations by the Executive Committee, and (ii) continuing to go about the business of doing libertarian politics in Oregon.

    The LNC has chosen its affiliate, presumably after doing due diligence, and undoubtedly knows exactly how a group that apparently has no treasury, ballot access, etc. is going to advance to victory.

  179. Robert Capozzi

    226 gp, you mean “recognizes,” not “chosen,” yes?

    Interesting idea: Jump-ball affiliate state parties. Have 2 state LPs and whichever performs better gets recognized by the LNC. Novel, but seems unworkable.

    If — as is suggested by others — the Wagner group in effect “stole” the LPO’s assets, surely you’d not want to reward bad behavior? It seems completely understandable that if assets are stolen, the victim of the theft might have a tough time operating, don’tcha think?

  180. Thomas L. Knapp

    Bob @225,

    I’m curious as to why you’re repeatedly raising the spectre of “the nuclear option” in the form of it being some sort of action that Wagner would be taking, as opposed to it being the LNC’s executive committee pushing the big red button.

    Wagner believes himself to be the legitimate chair of the real Oregon Libertarian Party, and is acting in that capacity.

    That organization is appealing what it considers to be a constructive disaffiliation from its chosen national committee through the channels mandated by that national committee’s bylaws.

    If the appeal fails, or if it succeeds and the disaffiliation is then made formal throught the LNC bylaws-mandated process, the situation will still be as follows:

    – Wagner will still consider himself the legitimate chair of the real Oregon Libertarian Party, since that organization’s existence and status is not dependent upon its affiliation with any particular national committee, but is rather a function of state law;

    – That organization will have been told, by the Libertarian National Committee and/or the Judicial Committee (affirming the executive committee) “you’re not affiliated with us, and are therefore neither entitled to a voice in, nor in any way bound to act in coordination with, our process for choosing a presidential ticket. Have a nice day.”

    While it is true that the Oregon LP nominating a different presidential slate than other state LP’s would be a mushroom cloud of sorts, it is clearly the LNC/EC/Judicial Committee, not Wagner, piloting the Enola Gay here.

  181. George Phillies

    The number of LNC leaks is increasing rapidly.
    More sources than ever have sent me the LNC email confirming that the cease and desist letter was not sent by the ExComm. It includes the absurd claim of the LNC Chair that they did not disaffiliate the Wagner faction and affiliate the Reeves faction.

    As yet another preview point of the next issue of Liberty for America, consider the letter we will be publishing in our next issue

    “Dear LNC,

    I requested and authorized the note below from Gary Sinawski.

    In order to protect our copyright, I felt it necessary to request that folks associated with the Wagner faction cease using the name Libertarian as we no longer recognize them as the official leadership of the LPO.

    The LNC EC recognized the Reese faction as the duly elected leadership of the Libertarian Party of Oregon and thus any other group is prohibited from using our name.

    And, as an aside, the action taken by the LNC Executive Committee was in no way a “dis-affiliation” by any stretch of the imagination.

    Yours in liberty……………….Mark Hinkle, LNC Chair”

  182. George Phillies

    @228 Generally, in transmitting attack orders to a nuclear bomber, it is not considered the course of wisdom to use your own geographic coordinates attached to the tag ‘drop it here!’

    In saying this, I do not mean disrespect to the substantial number of Americans who called down artillery fire on their own coordinates, thereby earning the highest award a soldier can earn.

  183. Robert Capozzi

    228 tk, fair question. It all depends on one’s perspective as to who’s threatening full-blown schism here.

    Let’s assume that all involved are acting in good faith. Wagner, Reeves, Excomm, possibly JudCom and full LNC. Say JudCom and full LNC validate Excomm.

    In the big picture, the LNC and the rest of the states are hurt a bit if Wagner maintains his position. If Wagner accedes — temporarily — LPO stays in the umbrella, and he can run for chair next time. It’s easier and less harmful to the LP and LM for him to be the bigger man.

    Next time, he can air his grievances with Reeves, Burke, LNC, in a full-throated way. He can be the hero who kept the LP a national presence. He can be Caesar, crossing the Rubicon, sending the corrupt SCM apparatchik carpetbaggers back where they came from.

    That’s the only win/win/win I see here. All other options are lose/lose/lose.

  184. Wes Wagner

    GP @230

    When calling down an FFE on your own line to prevent the rest of your team from being overrun is worthy of the highest honors you speak of, doing so accidentally earns one the dubious darwin award.

  185. JT

    Hinkle’s message is eminently reasonable to me, just as I’ve found him to be in general. I think the national officers did what they should have done in this case. Good for them.

  186. Thomas L. Knapp

    @229,

    So far this is the only really positive development I’ve seen coming out of the whole Oregon thing.

    If the LNC is silly enought to press the matter of its fraudulent copyright claim in court, that claim will finally be dispositively squashed.

  187. Wes Wagner

    TK @235

    Pretty much. The LPO predates the LNC Inc., State law specifically gives us exclusive use of the name within the State of Oregon(248.010), among a myriad of other issues including 1st amendment, etc.

    It would be ironic to see the ACLU lawyers fighting the LNC Inc., wouldn’t it?

  188. Thomas L. Knapp

    Wes @ 236,

    I don’t think it will really get as far as the ACLU needing to step up to the plate.

    I am neither a lawyer nor a legal expert, but I just can’t see a federal judge listening to the LNC’s copyright claim for more than about 30 seconds before banging his gavel and saying — between outbursts of “can you believe the shit that comes in here?” laughter — “case dismissed, plaintiff pays defendant’s expenses and punitive sanctions, and I suggest that this ‘LNC’ outfit spend some of its limited funds on a clue.”

  189. Wes Wagner

    TK @237

    We would hire an ACLU lawyer just to drive the point home. That is how we roll.

  190. JT

    Knapp: “I am neither a lawyer nor a legal expert…”

    If you think such a case would be viewed as ridiculous on its face, then nobody could mistake you for one.

  191. Thomas L. Knapp

    JT,

    What’s not ridiculous about claiming trademark protection for a name which you did not originate, were not the first to use in commerce, and did not defend through four decades of its use by other entities, some of which have legal recognition of their ownership of it predating your claim by decades?

    It’s just barely possible that I could get away with starting a new national political organization and calling it the Coca-Cola National Committee, but yes, I’d get laughed at by the Coca-Cola Bottling Company if I sent them a “cease and desist” letter, and out of court if I wasted my money suing them for the name that they originated, that I didn’t, that they used before I did, and that they secured legal protection for long before I ever filed my trademark application.

  192. Robert Capozzi

    240 tk, OK, I’ve never looked at this one before, so: The LNC is a newer entity, established sometime after 1971. What I don’t know about the history is when the Nolan entity was wound down and the LNC was created, and how that happened.

    Also not a lawyer, but I’ve seen asset transfers in which a successor entity retains the assets of the predecessor.

    Was there a legal entity created in 1971? Is that entity gone? Did the LNC get those assets?

    If so, a trademark might attain…dunno.

  193. Robert Capozzi

    238 ww: We would hire an ACLU lawyer just to drive the point home. That is how we roll.

    me: Is this really in anyone’s interest? Is this really how most LPOers want their resources spent? Really?

  194. Thomas L. Knapp

    Bob @241,

    The history gets murky. One old-timer — it may have been Nolan himself — told me that the LNC was formed in 1976, but I’ve seen references to a chair (Crane) as early as 1974.

    “Was there a legal entity created in 1971? Is that entity gone? Did the LNC get those assets?”

    Don’t know — and doesn’t matter, since there were functioning Libertarian Parties in at least two states (New York and California) before the 1971 formation of the “national” Libertarian Party.

    That’s setting aside other relevant facts like:

    – The fact that political parties are and always have been legally organized and recognized at the state, not federal, level.

    – The fact that the LNC did not file its trademark application until the early 21st century, long after Libertarian Parties had been established and achieved various forms of legal recognition in every US state, the District of Columbia, and assorted US territories, not on the basis of their affiliation with the LNC but in their own right.

  195. Wes Wagner

    RC@242

    Ask the LNC Ex-comm, they started it by sending a C&D letter implying they will press their claim. We will counter for abuse of process since all the facts stated by TK are already known to them and seek monetary damages on top of it of course if they pursue this lunacy.

  196. Robert Capozzi

    244 ww, do you accept or deny that the LNC has the power to recognize affiliates? I assume you accept that.

    Let’s flash forward: Assume Allah intervenes, and your LPO prevails in all ways. What does that get you? What does that do for the cause of liberty, beyond a legalistic interpretation of state-law primacy?

  197. Wes Wagner

    245 RC

    An organization controlled and participated in by all 13k registered libertarian who have actual lawful control of their organization, as opposed to a horribly broken party controlled by two or three dictators who have never sought anything but to whore it out for their own pecuniary gain and a set of bylaws that can be abused in a parliamentary manner to ensure that those individuals will remain dictators for life with no ability for the membership to ever change anything.

  198. Robert Capozzi

    243 tk: The fact that the LNC did not file its trademark application until the early 21st century…

    me: Thanks. Generally a lawyer won’t press a case unless there’s a legal theory that supports it, is my understanding. We’ll see if there is one, if it comes to that…

    In NY, it was the Free L party for many years. CA may have always been LP of CA. I’m not sure what that has to do with OR and OR law, though, if you want to get technical…

  199. Robert Capozzi

    246 ww, that sounds like a nice goal, though a narrow one. I trust you’ve weighed the risks of the path you’re pursuing against these benefits, and in your heart and mind you feel entirely justified in uncorking this bottle…

  200. Wes Wagner

    RC @249

    The LNC Ex comm is the one going out of their way to do the wrong thing, and they are being caroused into it by a set of bad actors who have emotionally manipulated them into desperately trying to protect their authority and power rather than looking at what the results of their activities would actually be were they somehow success and prevailed.

    If they win, the Oregon affiliate is essentially dead. If they lose, well the next LNC would likely just ask to reinstate our organization because we would have a large membership, ballot access and be far better organized than ever since our bad actors here in Oregon would finally be gone.

    We anticipate the LNC doing the wrong thing … it has been their trademark. If they were to actually do the ethical and right thing it would screw up all our plans.

  201. LibertarianGirl

    are you sure the new bylaws or whatever will ensure M and others will remain control forever thru parliamentary procedureor would it mean youjust have to bring more credentialed people to the next convention and take it back… just curious, what bylaw your referring to Wes…i dont NV adopting the same one.lol

  202. Suspend the Officers

    Phillies writes:

    @248 There is in fact a way to do this, given that it is the LNC ExComm that has been the problem. The LNC should pass the following motion. (In fairness to the names person, one motion per names person would not be inappropriate.)

    I remind readers the under LNC Bylaws “suspend from the LNC” is what elsewhere would be called “impeach and remove from office, subject to appeal to the Judicial Committee”.

    It is moved to suspend from the LNC, for cause

    LNC Chair Mark Hinkle
    LNC Vice Chair Mark Rutherford
    LNC Secretary Alicia Mattson
    LNC Treasurer William Redpath
    LNC At-Large Member Kevin Knedler

    Specification of causes:

    First, the LNC Executive Committee has passed the following motions, Dr. Mary Ruwart being the only opposing vote:

    Motion 1) Based upon the available evidence, the Executive Committee of the Libertarian National Committee finds that the Bylaws of the Libertarian Party of Oregon (as amended March 14-15, 2009) are the Bylaws of the Libertarian Party of Oregon, and that these bylaws have been in effect since March 15, 2009.

    Motion 2) Based upon the available evidence, the Executive Committee of the Libertarian National Committee recognizes as the officers of the Libertarian Party of Oregon those people elected by the State Committee during its meeting on May 21, 2011. They are:
    Chair: Tim Reeves
    Vice chair: Eric B. Saub
    Secretary: Carla J. Pealer
    Treasurer: Gregory Burnett.

    Second, the LNC Executive Committee has caused its Counsel to transmit to the Libertarian Party of Oregon a cease and desist letter reading

    Dear Mr. Wagner, Mr. Tabor, Mr. Knight and Mr. Vetanen:

    I am general counsel to the Libertarian National Committee. This is a demand that you cease and desist from any actions or omissions that are inconsistent with (1) the determination of the Executive Committee of the Libertarian National Committee that the bylaws of the Libertarian Party of Oregon as amended March 14-15, 2009 are the bylaws of the Libertarian Party of Oregon and have been in effect since March 15, 2009 or (2) the determination of the Executive Committee that the officers of the Libertarian Party of Oregon are the individuals elected by the State Committee on May 21, 2011, namely, Tim Reeves, Chair; Eric B. Saub, Vice Chair; Carla J. Pealer, Secretary; and Gregory Burnett, Treasurer. As you were previously notified, the Executive Committee made these determinations on July 18, 2011.
    Gary Sinawski

    (Sinawski phone numbers and email address deleted)

    These actions are in violation of the Party Bylaws and Statement of Principles, are gravely injurious to the future of the party, and therefore merit suspension from the National Committee.

    In particular:

    Cause 1) Use of fraud for political purposes, in violation of the statement of principles.

    Passage of motion 1 and 2, above, is based on the implicit claim that the LNC was not disaffiliating the State Party whose web site appeared until a few days ago on LP.org, because if it were disaffiliation the ExComm could not validly have passed these motions. The ExComm implicitly claims it was merely deciding which officers, bylaws, and membership list — these being entirely different — govern Oregon. The claim is obviously and transparently false, is thus a use of fraud for political purposes, and demands suspension.

    Cause 2) Substantive harm to our party:

    By disaffiliating the Libertarian party of Oregon, Wes Wagner, Chair, the LNC Executive Committee has lost Oregon Presidential ballot access for our Party, thus doing grave substantial damage to our national party. This is a substantial cause, adequate to justify suspension.

    Cause 3 ) Breach of the autonomy of a state party.

    Party Bylaws, Article 6, Section 5 provide

    “6.5 The autonomy of the affiliate and sub-affiliate parties shall not be abridged by the National Committee or any other committee of the Party, except as provided by these Bylaws.”

    The LNC Bylaws do not provide that the LNC may identify a state party’s bylaws. Therefore, Motion 1, above, violates 6.5 and is adequate cause to suspend.

    Cause 4 ) Breach of the autonomy of a state party.

    The LNC Bylaws do not provide that the LNC may choose a state party’s officers. Therefore, Motion 2, above, violates 6.5 and is adequate cause to suspend.

    Cause 5) Violation of prerogatives of the full national committee:

    Party Bylaws, Article 6, Section 6, provide

    “6.6 The National Committee shall have the power to revoke the status of any affiliate party, for cause, by a vote of 3/4 of the entire National Committee. A motion to revoke the status of an affiliate party for cause must specify the nature of the cause for revocation.”

    The disaffiliation of the Libertarian Party of Oregon was in fact carried out, not by the required vote of the National Committee, but by a vote on the Executive Committee, which has specifically by our Bylaws been denied this power. This violation of Party Bylaws is adequate cause to suspend.

    Cause 5) Conspiring to deny National Party members and State parties their rights and privileges under National Party Bylaws.

    Party Bylaws, Article 6, Section 6, provide

    “The affiliate party may challenge the revocation of its status by written appeal to the Judicial Committee within 30 days of receipt of notice of such revocation.”

    By causing to be transmitted to the Libertarian Party of Oregon the cease and desist letter quoted above, the LNC Executive Committee has sought albeit unsuccessfully to intimidate the Libertarian Party of Oregon from exercising its right of challenge under our Bylaws, an act justifying suspension.

    Cause 6) Use of legalisms rather than substantial consideration of merit of case. In determining which group should be recognized as our party affiliate in Oregon, the ExComm relied on Robertsonian legalisms rather than a consideration of the substantive abilities of the two groups to advance our party. This choice of incorrect basis for making the decision was irrational, immoral, and injurious tot he future of the party, and merits suspension.

  203. Wes Wagner

    LG @251

    The old bylaws, last amended in 2009, are the ones that would ensure that Burke’s puppet regime would be dictators for life, due to the quorum issue the parliamentarians brought up to shut down the November 2010 convention.

    We could have just remained dictators for life ourselves by operating under those bylaws in perpetuity, but, well, libertarians just don’t do that.

    It does not matter how much you outnumber them if you can’t have a meeting.

  204. Wes Wagner

    GP@252

    Your last argument is an appeal to equity … which is a pillar of a fair legal system. At the point in time the law has been corrupted or perverted to the point where there does not exist an equitable outcome, or the outcome prescribed by law is inequitable, it is supposed to be set aside.

    Even if they can, by some obtuse measure, state that what they did was lawful through their “Robertsonian legalisms”, their character is still impaired by their lack of applying equity in the situation.

    Unfortunately, the influence of these people have so corrupted the culture of leadership in the LP that most individuals would not understand that cause 6 would be cause enough alone, should they even successfully defend causes 1 through 5, and that by successful defense of causes 1-5 they would make themselves guilty of cause 6.

    Thought I would just point that out for anyone who didn’t catch it right off the cuff.

  205. Robert Capozzi

    250 ww: If they win, the Oregon affiliate is essentially dead.

    me: You make a LOT of accusations here. I’m sure you believe them.

    My impression is that OR is more or less like most state LPs, perhaps somewhat more active than most. Fair?

    So, if these “bad actors” have managed the party to a level of most state LPs, it sounds as if you are willing to press your judgments about others to the brink, risking a full-blown national implosion.

    Is there in your mind REALLY that much upside in your efforts? Let’s assume that the Excomm — manipulated emotionally for power over a tiny, barely functioning, ineffective party — is doing the wrong thing. Let’s assume that someone like Moulton is COMPLETELY wrongheaded on the merits of the situation, that he too is being manipulated by SCM and Burke and whomever else you’ve got grievances with.

    Why spend this energy? To make a point on behalf of 13K ORians?

    Maybe YOU should run for LNC Chair!

  206. paulie

    There is in fact a way to do this, given that it is the LNC ExComm that has been the problem. The LNC should pass the following motion….

    That may get one or two votes at most.

  207. JT

    Knapp: “What’s not ridiculous about claiming trademark protection for a name which you did not originate, were not the first to use in commerce, and did not defend through four decades of its use by other entities, some of which have legal recognition of their ownership of it predating your claim by decades?”

    I was talking about how you thought the court and court observers would respond. I think you were exaggerating, but the case wouldn’t be laughed out of court, nonetheless. I suspect the only people who think it would be prima facie ridiculous are perennial critics of the LNC who enjoy seeing the board beat down regardless.

    As to what you said above, which groups had legal recognition of the name Libertarian Party predating the claim by decades? Did they have a federal trademark on the name, or just use it within a certain area, or what? Has it been in use ever since by the organization that originated it, or was it abandoned by that particular organization at some point? Can you tell me the facts of these things? I’d appreciate that, because they all come to bear on a legal trademark. They may not be the only facts that apply here though.

    Knapp: “It’s just barely possible that I could get away with starting a new national political organization and calling it the Coca-Cola National Committee, but yes, I’d get laughed at by the Coca-Cola Bottling Company if I sent them a “cease and desist” letter, and out of court if I wasted my money suing them for the name that they originated, that I didn’t, that they used before I did, and that they secured legal protection for long before I ever filed my trademark application.”

    This is a false analogy for reasons I mentioned above.

  208. JT

    I think you may have answered a couple of questions above. Let me review them carefully.

  209. Robert Capozzi

    256 p: That may get one or two votes at most.

    me: Seems a reasonable assessment. So, then the question becomes: Why on Earth would someone press such a quixotic case?

  210. Michael H. Wilson

    The LNC Excomm might wish to send a letter withdrawing the previous one and recognize that Wes and company are the officers of the state party and recognize the new by-laws.

  211. Robert Capozzi

    260 ww, and that would be: what? Grow the membership to 15K? What’s your vision for LPO? Majority control of the state assembly by 2016? Is fighting this fight REALLY going to get you there, or are you luxuriating in this battle?

  212. paulie

    So, then the question becomes: Why on Earth would someone press such a quixotic case?

    Continuing to build the case for the creation of a new national breakaway Liberty Party. If you’ve been reading carefully enough, it’s been more than hinted at quite a few times.

  213. Nicholas Sarwark

    As a general matter, one does not have to vigorously pursue unauthorized uses of a copyright in order to maintain the rights in a work. Registration of a work can help with getting damages, though.

    A trademark does have to be vigorously protected, lest unauthorized use dilute the mark, make it generic, or give an unauthorized user a limited right to continue using it. If you let someone use your trademark long enough without saying anything, you’ll lose your rights in the mark as to that user.

    Typically, a cease and desist letter will identify the mark being used, allege that the mark is owned by the entity sending the letter, and demand that the unauthorized user stop using the mark.

    There’s your free IP law primer for the day, worth every penny you paid for it.

  214. Robert Capozzi

    263 p, yes, that tracks. And if the intent is to do that, the breakaway faction might benefit by creating as much friction as possible as a means (they might think) to attract more to walk out with them.

    I must admit, I do like the idea of a Liberty Party, cleansed of the LP’s patchwork of institutional patches. Of course, IF that’s the intent, the ideology of the secessionists ain’t my cup of tea, near as I can tell. I’d think the BTP would work just as well…

    Paulie, I sometimes think you are Lao Tzu, reincarnated!

  215. Wes Wagner

    RC @262

    Our prime focus is on candidate recruitment and accumulating and harvesting contact information from those 13k voters who express an interest in being active/supportive so once candidates are recruited/step forward we will know who in their districts might be willing to help them.

    Since we are engaged in partisan politics, just adding registered voters is not a goal in itself, but would be a natural consequence of running good campaigns and fielding more quality candidates and raising the profile of our elections.

    Ultimately the needs of those candidates would determine the purpose of the back office of the organization in a party that is aligned towards the goal of improving performance in partisan races.

    now there may exist some people who think the purpose of “controlling” an affiliate is so you have influence on who the delegates to some national convention thing out there someplace so they can play screw-your buddy type games of no real consequence.

    That is pretty far down on our priority list… I think we ran out of paper before reaching that one.

  216. Robert Capozzi

    265 ns, thank you, counselor. Is it the case that trademarks are federal? Is there such a thing as a state-only trademark?

  217. Nicholas Sarwark

    There are both state and Federal trademarks. Most people apply for Federal, since most businesses can’t say for sure that their only use of the mark would be within a particular state.

    There are reasons to get one or the other, or both, but it’s not my area of practice, so I’m not qualified to talk about those.

  218. Robert Capozzi

    267 ww, sounds reasonable to me. Would you as chair of LPO risk non-recognition by the LNC in order to pursue those goals? Would you prefer to field your own candidate for prez of the US, free from the manipulation by SCM and their mind-manipulating toadies?

  219. Wes Wagner

    RC @ 270

    Given recent events, it would appear we already have ricked non-recognition by the LNC. We have consistently asked the LNC to stop meddling in our affairs for over 6 years. Instead there are still agents who want to use this state as their personal political football.

    In the interests of not having one more gaping hole in the elction map in 2012, and to assist other fellow members of the LP in other states, we did kindly submit a judicial committee petition to reign in the abuses of the LNC ex-comm … but should the entire LNC ultimately disaffiliate us, I can guarantee you that not a single tear would be shed.

  220. Robert Capozzi

    271 ww, I certainly don’t want you to shed tears personally. I’m curious whether you have a sense that at least, say, 6600 LPOers are OK with seceding/being unrecognized by the national LP?

    If it were me, I’d want serious super majorities of my membership to be OK with that. People have a tendency to get swept up in the passion of the moment, after all….

    Or could it be that they’ve not been consulted with the program of brinksmanship….

  221. Robert Capozzi

    269 ns, thanks again. Defending a mark at a federal level would, I’d think, trump defending a mark at a state level.

    I could imagine SCM and Burke — aka, Evil Incarnate — manipulating Hinkle with advanced voo doo and establishing another LPO, pressing the sec’y of state, claiming that the national mark trumps the state mark (if it’s been defended by the heroic Mr. Wagner and associates.)

    Can you say “billable hours”?

    AFU…

  222. Wes Wagner

    RC @273

    Billable hours indeed.

    ORS 248.010 Use of party name. Each major political party and minor political party, its nominated candidates and its members and officers shall have the exclusive right to use the whole party name or any part of it. [Amended by 1957 c.608 §49; 1965 c.407 §1; 1975 c.779 §4; 1979 c.190 §71; 1983 c.514 §5]

  223. Thomas L. Knapp

    RC @ 245,

    You write (to Mr. Wagner):

    “do you accept or deny that the LNC has the power to recognize affiliates?”

    I don’t see that that has ever been in question.

    There are, however, rules relating such recognition, and the appeal to the Judicial Committee is premised upon a claim that those rules were not followed.

    On THAT matter, Wagner is claiming to be the chair of the “real” Oregon affiliate of the LNC.

    All of that is important vis a vis an organization attempting to field a presidential slate, but there’s more to it:

    The LNC doesn’t get to decide what group is or is not the Libertarian Party of Oregon.

    Affiliation or non-affiliation with the LNC is irrelevant to whether or not a particular organization is the “real” LPO, because state political parties are creatures of state law, not of national committee affiliation.

    State political parties are free to affiliate with any national committee they like (and that likes them), or with no national committee at all.

    State political parties are free to change which national committee they affiliate with — as, for example, a handful of southern Democratic state parties did in 1948, when they affiliated with the national “States Rights Democratic Party” and ran Strom Thurmond rather than Harry Truman for president on their ballot lines.

    JT @ 257,

    You write:

    “which groups had legal recognition of the name Libertarian Party predating the claim by decades?”

    I haven’t made a list yet, but I’m planning to do so. Keep in mind that the LNC did not attempt to register a trademark on the name “Libertarian Party” until 2000.

    By that time, most state LPs had long achieved state recognition of their claim to the name “Libertarian Party” under the various state election laws.

    “Did they have a federal trademark on the name, or just use it within a certain area, or what?”

    They certainly didn’t have a federal trademark. So far as I can tell, there are only four federal trademarks with the word “Libertarian” in them.

    All of that aside, it’s also pretty depressing that LNC hasn’t yet noticed — or if it has noticed it, it hasn’t acted in accordance with it — that the whole concept of “intellectual property” is anti-libertarian balderdash anyway.

  224. Tank the LP

    I’d love to see the LPO leave the LP — and take its ballot access with it. The fewer states the LP appears on, the more broken apart the LP is, the stronger the freedom movement.

    Having the LP appear on state ballots feeds the illusion that the LP can become a major party. This illusion leads to an obsession with ballot access, getting votes, winning elections, etc., which harms the freedom movement.

    Because of this electoral obsession, all too many libertarians are afraid to take “controversial” or “extreme” positions.

    Because of this electoral obsession, party hacks fight over control of state parties’ ballot access and control of state parties’ delegations — and productive work is ignored.

    The LP is a ball & chain on the freedom movement. A collection of party hacks fighting for turf (or opportunists using the LP for personal fame, e.g., Root).

    Time to tank the damn thing already.

  225. Robert Capozzi

    274 ww, if I’ve learned anything about the law, it’s that disembodied cites don’t make a case. For ex., the first house I bought in VA had a deed that said, in effect, “only white people can live here.” Thankfully, that law was trumped by other laws.

    Of course, be careful what you wish for. If the LNC can make the case that you stole the party’s assets, you might be opening yourself up to election law fraud, filing false documents, etc.

    I doubt it comes to that, but we are dealing with nefarious power-mad control freaks and their hypnotized toadies…

    I seem to recall Paul Jacob ended up in the slam, too, over election law violations in OK.

  226. Tank the LP

    If the LNC can make the case that you stole the party’s assets, you might be opening yourself up to election law fraud, filing false documents, etc.

    Tell it to Mark Hinkle, who opened up this can of worms — and who might be opening the LNC up to “election law fraud, filing false documents, etc.”

    See? It works both ways.

  227. Michael H. Wilson

    re # 278 Mark Hinkle did not open this can of worms. This problem has been going on for years. Management of the LP has been poor in my not so humble opinion for more than 20 years. There have been occasional moments of genius, but not many.

  228. Robert Capozzi

    275 tk: …the whole concept of “intellectual property” is anti-libertarian balderdash anyway.

    me: I’m not convinced that’s so, but I hear ya. One could also say that about election laws, letters from sec’ys of state, etc. Tank seems to take the nihilist approach to politics, and perhaps you do, too.

  229. Robert Capozzi

    278 tank, yes, I suppose it’s possible that the entire LNC and the leadership of the LPO could end up in the clink. It DOES work both ways, but, then, I believe in the karma.

  230. Robert Capozzi

    Circling back to the issue of potential conflicts on JudCom, is Bill Hall the former GC to the LNC. Might that be a conflicted situation? I have no opinion, jus’ wondering…

  231. Thomas L. Knapp

    RC @ 280,

    It took me a long time to come around on intellectual property, so I don’t blame you for not being convinced yet.

    I suspect most libertarians will be coming around soon, because the issue is ripening in a big way in the real world — the continuing evolution of information toward the freedom hacktivists claim it wants is coming into direct conflict with the corporations’ attempt to lock down pretty much every possible bit of data under IP claims.

    To mangle a quote from Lincoln, information cannot survive forever half-slave and half-free. Sooner or later, it’s going to be all one or all the other.

    Anyway, the matter of IP’s validity itself aside, it strikes me that the “cease and desist” letter is an appeal to state authority made under even less justifiable circmstances than the Phillies “narcing” you like so much to bring up. The matter went from zero to threatened litigation at about the speed of the US Postal Service.

    Question: Aside from disputable IP rights, what assets do you think that an organization claiming to be the LP could have “stolen” from the LNC.

    The LPO’s bank account, etc., might belong to one faction or another claiming to be LPO, but it’s certainly not the LNC’s property.

    Lists of LPO members might have overlap with lists of LNC “national party” members, but they are still LPO lists, not LNC lists — if one faction has stolen them from the other, the LNC is not the injured party.

  232. Thomas L. Knapp

    LG @ 283,

    Actually, they don’t own anything. Their application was fraudulent and will be blown to smithereens if it ever enters a courtroom. Its only value is for bluster. It’s like a gun that you can wave around for effect, but that will blow up in your face if you fire it.

    That said, the trademark claim seems to go a little further than just “Libertarian Party,” period, extending to use of the word “Libertarian” in association with political parties and party activities.

    For example, the LNC specifically licensed the use of the word to the Libertarian National Congressional Committee.

    I was hoping to get a cease and desist rise out of them in 2008 when I ran advertisements for the BTP announcing it as “America’s Newest Libertarian Political Party” and Charles Jay as “The Real Libertarian Candidate for President,” but they (in one of those rare wise moves) decided to ignore it rather than try to defend the trademark.

  233. Robert Capozzi

    285 tk: The LPO’s bank account, etc., might belong to one faction or another claiming to be LPO, but it’s certainly not the LNC’s property.

    me: Good point. The aggrieved party would be the Reeves faction (I hate that term) regarding the tangible assets. The LNC might have an interest in the intangible assets (TM).

  234. JT

    Capozzi: “Was there a legal entity created in 1971? Is that entity gone? Did the LNC get those assets?”

    Knapp: “Don’t know — and doesn’t matter, since there were functioning Libertarian Parties in at least two states (New York and California) before the 1971 formation of the “national” Libertarian Party.”

    What Capozzi asked does matter. Even though the U.S. has a “first to use” trademark system, there are ways that didn’t apply then or doesn’t apply now.

    Knapp: “- The fact that political parties are and always have been legally organized and recognized at the state, not federal, level.”

    You can still trademark “X Party” on the federal level that’s binding in each state depending on “first to use” considerations.

    Knapp: “- The fact that the LNC did not file its trademark application until the early 21st century, long after Libertarian Parties had been established and achieved various forms of legal recognition in every US state, the District of Columbia, and assorted US territories, not on the basis of their affiliation with the LNC but in their own right.”

    It doesn’t matter when the LNC filed, as long as “first to use” applies. And it may, depending on answers to other questions regarding any aforementioned state parties.

    The bottom line is that it isn’t so obvious that the LNC’s registered trademark to the name Libertarian Party is invalid. The law isn’t that simple.

    Personally, I hope a court would find it to be valid, because the delegates from the states to the national convention adopt bylaws that specifically say that the LNC can grant affiliate status to state parties and honor that status by barring other organizations from using the name.

  235. LibertarianGirl

    TK_That said, the trademark claim seems to go a little further than just “Libertarian Party,” period, extending to use of the word “Libertarian” in association with political parties and party activities.

    me_ um then there are a few groups in NV and I imagine 1,000’s nationwide in violation. we are using Clark County Libertarians , we have Nye County Libertarians have the Libertarian Alliance of the Left in NV alone , oh my personal fave the Capitol Libertarian Polity ( no thats not a misspelling) lol

  236. Robert Capozzi

    289 lg, I do believe the point is those entities are all affiliated (sub affiliates).

  237. Thomas L. Knapp

    Bob @ 290,

    The Alliance of the Libertarian Left isn’t affiliated with the LP.

    I doubt there’s a trademark issue there, though, since ALL tends to be anti-political and anti-party, and the trademark applies to politics and parties.

    Also, ALL is more of an informal notion than a formal entity — there’s not really anyone to sue.

  238. Thomas L. Knapp

    JT @ 288,

    I’m going to mangle another Lincoln quote. It was a story he told in reference to McClellan, and went something like this:

    A man was riding his horse one day when it began stepping too high and got its rear feet caught in the stirrups. “Well, then,” the man said “if you are going to get on, I suppose I shall get off.”

    The LNC is the horse, the state parties are the rider.

    If the LNC doesn’t stop trying to ride the rider, it will eventually find itself in the knacker’s yard, watching as its former riders drive away in their new Ford.

  239. JT

    The LNC is trying to ride the rider? I’m not sure I understand that, but I think I get the gist of your comment.

    The way I see it, the LNC is trying to sort through an embarrassing dispute that the factions involved seem unable or unwilling to resolve themselves. One set of officers has a legitimate claim to USLP affiliation, the other set doesn’t. Whom should the LNC recognize and whom should it not? That’s the question the national elected officers are trying to answer according to the available evidence. I don’t think that’s wrong.

    I also don’t think it’s wrong for the LNC to follow the bylaws adopted by state delegates to the national convention, including the provision I mentioned above.

  240. Robert Capozzi

    I’m pleased that there’s finally something that JT and I largely agree on!!!

    Some Ls try to liken the LP to the government. There’s a sense that “bottom up” is better than “top down” in all things. I don’t think either is accurate.

    I also think that people who are into politics are often into the drama of it. Since Ls are nowhere’s near the drama of changing law, the drama becomes an internal matter, e.g., intra-party drama.

    I’m into the anti-drama, the undoing of drama. This draws me to drama, in admittedly with a very different agenda. I don’t claim my approach is superior or anything like that, but I do question the utility of drama for drama’s sake.

  241. Thomas L. Knapp

    Bob @ 294,

    Just to be clear here, I don’t necessarily think that “bottom up” is better than “top down” with respect to organization of a political party.

    But, it’s not about what I think is “better.”

    Political parties are organized at the state level.

    Their national committees are instruments of coordination for a few specific purposes (running a common presidential slate, mainly, although there are a few others I can think of).

    That’s not necessarily the way I think it SHOULD be.

    That is, however, the way it IS.

  242. Kevin Knedler

    Bottom up or Top down. BOTH are correct. They can work together. Each particular piece of the puzzle has specific duties and expected performance.
    Same goes with a state affiliate working with counties.
    There are also services that can be provided from the “top down” that can be a better “bang for the buck” vs 50 states trying to do it or for that matter thousands of counties trying to do it.
    Meanwhile, the counties are the “boots on the ground” or “army ” of volunteers and activists.
    Plenty of room for everybody in the LP sandbox.

  243. LibertarianGirl

    can you tell that to Wayne Root and Joe Silvestri who nixed 3 growing , operational and present county LP parties in NV because they didnt likethe people elected in the counties by the counties..

    Wayne Root hates county parties because they have members that arent in awe of him …period.

  244. LibertarianGirl

    3 of the 4 I mentioned TK are the unaffiliated county parties in NV operating using the word Libertarian and not the word Party … are we in danger of a violation?

  245. JT

    Capozzi: “I’m pleased that there’s finally something that JT and I largely agree on!!!”

    Actually, I noticed that too. We may agree on procedural matters in general. We don’t usually discuss them.

    Capozzi: “Some Ls try to liken the LP to the government. There’s a sense that “bottom up” is better than “top down” in all things. I don’t think either is accurate.”

    I agree with this as well. Decentralization works well for some things, but not for others. A voluntary organization run from the top isn’t necessarily bad.

    That said, I do believe state parties should be largely autonomous and state party officials should be able to make business decisions without interference from national party officials (the converse of that is that I think state parties, except in rare circumstances, shouldn’t rely on the national party for money and ballot access).

    But there ARE times when national party officials should act, IMO, even if those times are seldom (as they should be). In this case, one faction in an intra-party dispute is committing an injustice against another. No resolution is forthcoming from them. This seems to me like one of those times.

    Capozzi: “I also think that people who are into politics are often into the drama of it. Since Ls are nowhere’s near the drama of changing law, the drama becomes an internal matter, e.g., intra-party drama.”

    Don’t look now, but I think I agree with this too. Maybe I inhaled something I shouldn’t have today (joke).

  246. Thomas L. Knapp

    LG @ 298,

    You write:

    “Are we in danger of a violation?”

    In reality, no, because there’s nothing to violate.

    As long as you’re not claiming to be an affiliate of the LNC, you’re not acting dishonestly.

    And if your county parties are organized under state election law, your claim to the name “Libertarian” is infinitely stronger than the LNC’s in any case.

  247. Michael H. Wilson

    The unfortunate thing with all of this is that every few months we have some drama like this instead of focusing on growing the organization and developing the local groups.

    It gets old.

  248. Robert Capozzi

    Tk, kk, jt, mhw, fwiw, I see a lot of agreement here. My gut tells me that a healthy organization has elements of top-down and bottom-up. In some ways, the aspect of top-down-ism I find UN-healthy in the LP is different from what bottom-up-ers generally support. That is, the ideological “obiter dicta” that basically creates an ideological rigidity that allows for little variability. Couple that with a strict sense that this dogma is “principled,” and other views are UN-principled, creates a toxic situation.

    Couple that with complex, convoluted bylaws and other procedural traps, and it’s no wonder that the LP seems stuck in the mud. This despite the fact that Ls and L-leaning thought is on the ascendancy.

    Bottom-up experimentation and best practices should be encouraged. I do believe, though, that when an organization is in start-up mode, the money should be directed in a top-down fashion, with strict oversight and auditing. Where should resources be spent for maximum impact seems best accomplished from things like the LNCC.

    Interestingly, I do sense that the situation COULD turn around rather quickly. My thought experiment of Paul/Johnson going against a failed, warmongering, thoroughgoing statist Obama and bland, directionless Romney or an unhinged Bachmann could signal a vast portion of the electorate that the Rs and Ds are just too corrupt to cotton any longer. It could be a transformative event, if handled properly. It’s also risky, given Paul’s baggage. (GP would say that Johnson’s weak support of continuing Gitmo is also baggage, but I happen to believe that that one is mostly an expedient view, given the legalistic complexities of what to do with enemy combatants who’ve already not received their Miranda warnings.)

  249. Michael H. Wilson

    Robert and Kevin, since we have you attention, for what my opinion is worth the national should be in the business of putting out how to information and us folks at the state and county level should be doing the work. For example we should have booklets on such subjects as: “How to conduct a meeting”, “Parliamentary Rules for small group”, “How to raise funds”, “Using non profit bulk mail” and then writing about who does what and how in the national news letter.

    There are some other things that national should do but the bulk of the work needs to be done at the local level especially in those states with voter registration by party. That is a gift that we have seldom used properly.

  250. Michael H. Wilson

    Brian I am well aware of that and that info was in our state news letter, but the idea is that national has to push that issue by offering some sort of carrot to get the job done.

  251. Michael H. Wilson

    Congressman David Wu of Oregon has announced he will resign. Now the LP needs a candidate in this race so which chair will sign the paperwork? Or does Oregon not run anyone and thus do as some have wanted for years? Stay out of elections for Congress in this district.

    It looks like the state of Oregon recognizes Mr. Wagner, but the LPN Excomm recognizes Mr. Reeves.

  252. George Phillies

    @310 The opinion of the LPN ExComm is of no consequence in this matter. Now, the minor issue that one of the Reeves faction officers is apparently a Republican Precinct Committeeman, and others have worked on Republican-shadow projects, may have some implications, but only with respect to their efforts to petition a candidate onto the ballot.

    I was (very slightly) surprised to read that WU has changed his mind again. Many thanks for the interesting news. Just the other day he was quoted as saying he would serve out his term and go away.

  253. Wes Wagner

    MW @310

    This is where the reality of the situation will begin to come out. The Reeve’s faction will want to cross-nominate a republican under the fusion rules in Oregon if history is any indicator. (given that Burke filed paperwork for republicans illegally just this last go around)

    The actual officers of the current LPO will want to run a libertarian candidate for the office to expand our brand.

  254. Michael H. Wilson

    George this has been growing under the covers for some years. He had a problem years ago similar to this and you would have had to be stoopid not to realize that Republican party types were keeping a close eye on him.

    The sad part is the LNC Excomm had little or no knowledge what is going on in the background in Oregon in this case. And it is why outsiders such as Carling need to stay out. Offering advice is one things, but otherwise stay out.

    I’d luv to work the conspiracy end of this, but I’ll leave that to someone else.

  255. LNC Member Files Brief to JudComm

    Mr. Brad Ploeger of Georgia has filed an extremely lengthy brief with the Judicial Committee, urging that LNC motions 1 and 2 are invalid.

    His core reason is that they are public policy motions (acts intended to influence the public policy of the Oregon Secretary of State Office), their texts were not circulated in advance, and therefore that the motions were defeated by the LNC ExComm, namely a unanimous vote was required under these conditions and the vote was only 6-1.

  256. paulie

    That’s the same guy.

    After a brief glance at the archives, it appears that he quit the New Path slate, then got elected on his own.

  257. Kevin Knedler

    @ # 305.
    I agree.
    Unless some buzzards kick me out of the LNC (LOL), I plan to push for some changes in focus from the national. The states need real help in order to operate, grow, prosper, and get people elected at the local and state level.

  258. LibertarianGirl

    Kevin can you start with NV , and teach them that time and again deaffiliating county parties(yes it happened thrice under the Duensing Chairmanship too) because all the people dont do what you say , but still promote liberty IS A BAD IDEA.

    Listening, compromise , teamwork , respect and the biggie– tolerance.are desperately needed..let people do what they do best to their own abilities rather than trying to force conformity…

    In Nv all ive heard for years is we need a unified message , we have to all be on the same page , we cant just let so and so do what he does

    In nV , i swear on everything , the purge was about personalities. They didnt like Jim Duensing , he speaks his mind , cant be controlled and is into 9-11 stuff , Jim Burns always ruffles feathers , he’s an asshole to work with etc, David Coleborne , Rowan Wilson , Angy mcKinster , myself , all people who expressed ideas , disagreements , had our own priorities , issues and agendas that werent what the Chair wanted.

    we are talking about active , growing affiliates being axed for a difference in vision ….

    i always defended wayne because for what he did , he was good at it and i knew there was no reason others couldnt do the same….but in no way is 1 person more important than any other.there would be no party if it werent for the tireless , thankless , vigilant activists keeping things going and doing the stuff that aint glamorous or exciting…

    Ive done everything there is to do activism wise for my local party.. everything…and so has Duensing and so has Burns and you know what ?I effin cant stand Duensing , literally but I would never have voted to deaffiliate because sometimes he makes us look crazy…if we cant change our own behaviors regarding eachother we will never change anything ever.

    If I were in charge the state parties only purpose would be ballot access and to create more county affiliates and to assist them. every affiliate , based on per capita members % would get reps to be delegates at the state convention where we would compete to be candidates , delegates to national and mostly share and brag about who’s doing what better. the seat of power, if u want to call it that would lie with the counties….

  259. paulie

    And, since I was authorized to transmit it, I have sent you a copy of the document.

    Send one to me as well please. I’ll either forward it to others at IPR, or not forward it, per your instructions.

  260. paulie

    Forwarded. However, I’ve been forwarding everything we get to everyone at IPR (except spam), and in the last month very little of it seems to be getting posted.

  261. Jill Pyeatt

    I can post it tonight from home, if no one has by then. Remember I’m on the west coast, so it will be midnight Eastern time before I’ll have a chance to sit at a computer.

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