From Brian Doherty at Reason.com, May 17th, 2016:
The Nevada Libertarian Party worked hard to put together a prominent forum for the three leading presidential hopefuls in a debate held yesterday in Las Vegas. The debate, featuring former Republican Gov. Gary Johnson, movement activist and Libertarian Republic founder Austin Petersen, and antivirus software legend John McAfee, was moderated by noted stage magician and libertarian Penn Jillette, known professionally as just “Penn.” (The event, whose attendance I estimate at around 300, was also a fundraiser for Penn’s favorite charity, Opportunity Village, which provides opportunities and aid for the intellectually disabled.)
McAfee, after patiently and effectively participating through the multi-hour four-part debate, chose in his closing remarks to attack the very concept of it. “You may think you learned something by watching this debate. I assure you you have learned nothing at all.” He then attacked the polished soundbite culture and canned answers of debates and hinted at the complicated truths they obscured. (He also used language unfit for most TV twice in this closing statement.)
I disagree with McAfee that the average viewer would “learn nothing” from the debate.
It is scheduled to be aired later this week on Glenn Beck’s The Blaze network—numerous times, Nevada’s L.P. Chair Brett Pojunis, who wrangled the event, tells me. That audience in particular may learn of an interesting political universe they barely knew existed. One longtime L.P. national committee member told me he hopes via The Blaze that this debate can become a moment of historical signficance for the L.P. and even emulate the political ferment caused by Rick Santelli’s famous summoning of a new “Tea Party” movement in 2009 on CNBC.