The Next News Network: John McAfee–The American Political Anti-Virus?

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27 thoughts on “The Next News Network: John McAfee–The American Political Anti-Virus?

  1. Darcy G Richardson

    I’m not a member of the Libertarian Party, but I agree that he’s the most interesting and impressive — not to mention articulate — candidate running for President this year. He’s fantastic on privacy issues and is clearly an anti-authoritarian. He’s a much deeper thinker than people realize and he has substantive things to say. Supporters, moreover, wouldn’t have to worry about the next cringeworthy remark that might come out of his mouth.

    Juxtaposed to the megalomaniacal Donald Trump and Wall Street warmonger Hillary Clinton, McAfee’s candidacy would have tremendous appeal to many paleo conservatives and a not insignificant number of folks on the left.

    The LP should stop fielding washed up Republicans and take a chance on a guy who actually has real libertarian instincts.

    In a year when the American electorate is clamoring for an “outsider,” McAfee’s candidacy makes perfect sense. Voters clearly aren’t looking for an ex-governor or former congressman.

    McAfee, moreover, would make politics fun again.

    If he’s nominated, I would vote for him in a heartbeat, thereby proudly casting my first vote for an LP presidential nominee since 1996.

    Thanks for posting this interview, Jill.

  2. Andy

    Darcy G. Richardson said: “The LP should stop fielding washed up Republicans and take a chance on a guy who actually has real libertarian instincts.”

    I don’t know that it would be fair to call John McAfee a washed up Republican, but he did publicly self identify as a Republican at least as recent as 2013.

  3. Anastasia Beaverhausen

    …and as a member of the “Cyber Party” until about ten minutes ago.

  4. Darcy G Richardson

    “I don’t know that it would be fair to call John McAfee a washed up Republican, but he did publicly self identify as a Republican at least as recent as 2013.” — Andy

    Fair enough, but at least McAfee never ran for office as a Republican. He’s smart, edgy and interesting enough to draw far more media coverage than any other likely LP nominee, which should count for something in a year when the American electorate is clearly looking for something different.

    I say the Libertarian Party should take a chance on him and see what happens.

  5. Darcy G Richardson

    “…and as a member of the “Cyber Party” until about ten minutes ago.” — Anastasia Beaverhausen

    You mean sort of like Gary Johnson, the uninspiring former governor of New Mexico who was a Republican candidate for president until about five minutes before announcing his candidacy for the Libertarian nomination in 2012, a candidacy in which unsuspecting yet generous LP donors unwittingly helped to pay off a portion of the massive debts — a staggering amount of which was deceptively hidden from party members at the time — incurred in his failed GOP candidacy? Got it.

  6. Cody Quirk

    Well, if I had to pick a second preference as to who should be the LP standard bearer in this year’s election- it would have to be McAfee.

  7. Anastasia Beaverhausen

    Darcy Richardson, you make it sound as if I disparaged Mr. McAfee in some vain hope of boosting Gary Johnson. Wrong. Gary Johnson was a terrible choice four years ago and he’s even worse this time.

  8. Darcy G Richardson

    “Darcy Richardson, you make it sound as if I disparaged Mr. McAfee in some vain hope of boosting Gary Johnson. Wrong. Gary Johnson was a terrible choice four years ago and he’s even worse this time.” — Anastasia Beaverhausen

    My sincere apologies, Anastasia. I thought you might have been one Gary’s dreamy-eyed supporters. Glad to hear you think the party should turn to somebody else this time around.

  9. Pingback: The Next News Network: John McAfee–The American Political Anti-Virus? | American Third Party Report

  10. Krzysztof Lesiak

    I agree with some other people here. McAfee is my second choice for the LP presidential nomination, after Darryl W. Perry. Since Perry hasn’t demonstrated he’s capable of running a very credible campaign, I’m leaning towards McAfee, though Perry is still first.

    I don’t know where to place Petersen. I find Petersen to be a like-able character, though his repudiation of the Non-Aggression Principle doesn’t sit very well with me.

    McAfee/Perry 2016 would certainly be an interesting ticket.

  11. Thomas L. Knapp

    I certainly hope not.

    For one thing, that’s upside down. It would be like the Rolling Stones opening for 21 Pilots.

    For another, if the LP is dumb enough to nominate Johnson again, it shouldn’t be rewarded by having anyone credible agree to play second fiddle.

  12. steve m

    George,

    It might well be upside down but I like the idea of two running together.

  13. Matt Cholko

    McAfee is interesting, for sure. I’m concerned that, if he’s our nominee, a ton of the limited media attention we get will be focused upon his alleged murder of his neighbor. It doesn’t sound to me like he did it. But, that won’t stop the media from latching on to it. I’m looking for a good reason to ignore this factor. I haven’t found it yet.

    As for Johnson, I’ll certainly support him in the general, if he’s our nominee, just like I did last time. I’d rather see someone new in the top spot though. GJ was okay in 2012. But, not good enough to warrant a second showing.

    I’d like to support Darryl Perry, as he seems to be the most consistent libertarian among the announced candidates. But, his donation policy makes it so that I can’t take his candidacy seriously.

    Kerbel seemed okay for awhile. Lately though, I don’t see much from him. I feel like he has faded a bit, since around the time McAfee entered the race.

    Petersen is running an active campaign. He gets credit for that, in my book. I just can’t get behind his philosophy, or his style. I’m not supporting him for our nomination.

    That brings me back to McAfee. I just don’t know if I can ignore the murder allegations…..

  14. Thomas L. Knapp

    The Johnson story just keeps getting worse.

    His campaign just flat-out lied about the size of its debt leading up to the 2012 nomination. As of the nomination, the campaign claimed $150k in debt — then came back nearly a year later to amend its reports. “Oh, yeah, we were really over a million in the hole at that point. Sorry about the mistake.”

    It turns out that the campaign manager was entitled to a $300,000 bonus if Johnson got the LP nomination. There was some back and forth on with the FEC on that from the campaign trying to have it both ways. It didn’t show up on FEC reports until December of 2012 when the campaign was invoiced for the first half of the bonus. The FEC asked why it wasn’t listed as debt at the time of the nomination, and the campaign’s response was that it wasn’t owed until it was invoiced … but at the same time, the campaign wanted it treated as a pre-nomination expense so that matching funds could be used to pay it.

    Every dollar donated to the Johnson campaign is being thrown down a rat-hole. And every minute the LP entertains the notion of nominating this guy again is far worse than just wasted. He’s poison.

  15. Andy

    “Thomas L. Knapp
    March 15, 2016 at 03:01

    The Johnson story just keeps getting worse.

    His campaign just flat-out lied about the size of its debt leading up to the 2012 nomination. As of the nomination, the campaign claimed $150k in debt — then came back nearly a year later to amend its reports. ‘Oh, yeah, we were really over a million in the hole at that point. Sorry about the mistake.'”

    Tom, can you or anyone else post a list of to whom Gary Johnson 2012 still owes money?

    Have the people to whom Gary Johnson 2012 still owes money done anything to try to collect that money?

    “It turns out that the campaign manager was entitled to a $300,000 bonus if Johnson got the LP nomination.”

    Wow, $300,000 for this. Hell, I could have done the same job for 1/3 of that.:)

    “Every dollar donated to the Johnson campaign is being thrown down a rat-hole. And every minute the LP entertains the notion of nominating this guy again is far worse than just wasted. He’s poison.”

    Do you plan to give an anti-Gary Johnson for the 2016 LP nomination speech at the National Convention? Do you plan to hand out anti-Gary Johnson for the 2016 LP nomination flyers at the National Convention?

  16. Thomas L. Knapp

    Andy,

    “Tom, can you or anyone else post a list of to whom Gary Johnson 2012 still owes money?”

    Here’s a link to the debt settlement plan.

    DB Capitol Strategies, $150k
    Law Office of Douglas C. Herbert, $26,789.62
    EH Squared, $9,404.41
    Haekstaff Law Group LLC, $3,166
    Political Advisors, $300k
    Political Advisors $831,087.02
    ThoughtLab, $29,720
    Daines Goodwin and Co PC $33,201.68

    Of the above creditors, the only one offered anything in settlement of debt is “Political Advisors.” The offer is four non-exclusive, transferable licenses to the campaign’s mailing list data for the $600k debt; the $300k debt, Nielson agrees to waive as “volunteer work.”

    “Do you plan to give an anti-Gary Johnson for the 2016 LP nomination speech at the National Convention?”

    I’ve not been asked to make any nomination speeches at the national convention. And if I am asked to give a nomination speech at the national convention, that speech will presumably extoll the virtues of the candidate in question rather than slam another candidate.

    “Do you plan to hand out anti-Gary Johnson for the 2016 LP nomination flyers at the National Convention?”

    I don’t know. I do consider it important for national convention delegates to know how badly they were defrauded last time around and how ugly the Johnson situation is right now, so I suppose I’ll engage in SOME kind of activities aimed at so informing them.

    To the extent that there may be civil penalties or even criminal investigations pending over the clearly fraudulent campaign reporting, I’m hoping that more information becomes available in the next two months.

  17. Stewart Flood

    If these were debts for campaign materials like pamphlets and signs, travel reimbusements for campaign staff (not salaries!), or other REAL expenses then I believe we would all have a different opinion. Neilson did not do $300K or even $30K worth of work to get him the nomination. Supporters who were delegates did the work, and Neilson was more of a hinderance than anything else.

    Aside from the payout to Neilson, this is almost all pumped up legal fees. Disgraceful.

  18. Thomas L. Knapp

    Well, the debt to Nielson’s company is split into two parts in the repayment plan.

    The $300k that Nielson is attempting to forgive on the basis that it was “volunteer work” is presumably the debt that accrues personally to him.

    The other increment of $831k is more likely stuff that was BILLED through Nielson’s company but that includes various things probably paid — or owed — to various parties as, essentially, subscontractors. The initial reporting was very opaque, just “$X to Political Advisors for campaign consulting” or whatever.

    Later reports SLIGHTLY expanded the scope of the information, e.g. “$X to Political Advisors for Y hours of Advertising Creative.” Still far from fully transparent, and the hourly billing rates seem to all fall in the $100 per hour plus range, but a little better, I guess.

    Back in 1996 and 2000, there were some questionable campaign finance practices on the part of the Browne campaign (in 1996, IIRC, 38% of his campaign expenditures were on “consulting fees” to various people, including his daughter), but nothing even close to the catch-me-fuck-me tricks that went on with Gary Johnson 2012, Inc.

    Things were hidden. Lies were told. Things are still being hidden and lies are still quite possibly being told.

    I was somewhat disengaged from the LP in 2012, but my recollection is that the debt WAS an issue, and that Johnson’s response was “it’s no problem, matching funds will cover it.”

    But his campaign was lying about how big its debt was, for the purpose of gaining a valuable consideration — the LP’s presidential nomination. That’s fraud, plain and simple. Similarly, the campaign was lying about the matching funds being enough to cover that debt.

    The Johnson campaign machine has proven that it cannot be trusted to tell the truth to Libertarians.

    The Johnson campaign has proven that it cannot be trusted to responsibly spend campaign funds.

    The Johnson campaign has proven that it cannot be trusted to pay its debts.

    The Johnson campaign has proven that it cannot be trusted.

  19. George Phillies

    “The $300k that Nielson is attempting to forgive on the basis that it was “volunteer work” is presumably the debt that accrues personally to him.”

    The FEC Audit of the Johnson campaign reports that in the end $171,000 was paid toward this debt. I haven’t finished with my new book yet–soon — and cannot give more details.

  20. George Phillies

    With respect to Petersen, it would be more interesting to have a discussion of his actual campaign positions rather than theological noise.

  21. George Phillies

    I needed a different phrasing. Arguments about the non-aggression principle are largely pointless.

    Perhaps “what are his position on concrete issues, say, the current war with Afghanistan or Singapore math, and how do they disagree with the positions of other candidates?”

  22. Thomas L. Knapp

    Well, I admit to not paying a WHOLE lot of attention to Petersen’s policy position. I’m aware of his “penny plan,” and his actual campaign platform isn’t too bad …

    … but the main takeaway line I recall from him on several issues questions in the Biloxi debate was “I agree with Darryl Perry.”

    Well, so do I. Which is why I support Darryl Perry if, as seems likely, NOTA isn’t going to arrive in Orlando with substantial support.

    I’d love to see Austin drop out and throw his support (and his spot in the Stossel debate) to Perry.

    If he doesn’t want to do that, well, I consider him weighed down enough with bad baggage that he’s not my third choice behind Perry. John McAfee is. If we’re not going to nominate a hardcore libertarian, we should nominate the candidate most likely to get the most media coverage and the most votes, and to do so without lying to the party about his campaign finances and without periodically breaking out into glossolalia about “the threat of sharia law” and so forth.

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