Open Thread for July 2016

Here we are again–at the beginning of a new month.  As is our tradition, here is a thread for miscellaneous articles and conversation. If you have something you’d like to share that doesn’t really fit into the comments of an existing thread, put it here. This is for YOU. Don’t plagiarize anything or libel anyone, and besides that you’ll probably be okay. Our mission here on IPR is to provide coverage of Independents and alternate political parties, but it’s all right if you wish to post something else you might think would be of interest to our community here.

Let’s start out with a couple of Fourth of July holiday-related videos.

213 thoughts on “Open Thread for July 2016

  1. Curt Boyd

    Reading on The Hill and Ballot Access News that the Better For America group thinks they’ll be on the ballot in five states in the next few days. Some of the folks involved were with Unity08 & Americans Elect, so I suppose we know how this effort will turn out.

  2. NewFederalist

    I sure wish there was a music video of Hedgehoppers Anonymous performing “It’s Good News Week”. Now THAT is a song for 2016 despite being released 51 years ago!

  3. Be Rational

    “Better for America Chairman John Kingston, a conservative donor with ties to George W. Bush, John McCain John McCain and Mitt Romney, said his group has been in discussions with current and former senators, governors and senior military officials and “absolutely” expects an independent candidate will emerge.”


    By NOT advertising earlier during the first two advertising windows – and we have no hint that any advertising will begin during the upcoming third window – the Johnson campaign has left a vacuum in the POTUS race.

    It was this vacuum that enabled GJ/WW to score lots of free media. But, they failed to capitalize in the opportunity. Without a strategy in place, without active outreach, without targeted major metwork broadcast TV advertising to show they are running a serious campaign. the Johnson campaign managers have allowed media interest to wain and drop off.

    There’s still time to run spots during the next window – bracketing the upcoming D and R conventions. The Johnson campaign can earn continued free media and stake their claim to this empty space in this year’s political map of preferences.

    Failure to do so will totally abandon the Neither-Trump-Nor-Hillary plurality to the vacuum, providing a golden opportunity for anyone bold enough to take it.

    IF this new group, “Better for America” has any kind of budget for outreach – even half a million dolalrs to start, they can jump in the race, advertise in targeted states on major network broadcast TV, and stroll through the door to fill the void left open for them by the Johnson campaign management team.

  4. Magnus Dahlstrøm

    David Bowie said this song is about ISIS. It shows what will happen to the Nordic villa of Ormen if unrestricted Islamic immigration continues. It will become a war torn area inhabited by Mongolized people with tails.

  5. Magnus Dahlstrøm

    Keep in mind while watching the video that ISIS crucifies Christians and that they worship a rock that fell from the sky. It’s too bad we lost all the insight and wisdom brought to us by the Thin White Duke.

  6. NewFederalist

    How many libertarian posters at IPR are considering abandoning the LP ticket in 2016? I freely admit that I am. I learned about and joined the LP in 1973 and since that time I have voted for the Libertarian ticket every year except 1984. In ’84 the Bergland/Lewis ticket failed to qualify for the ballot in Texas and nobody thought to register them for write-in status so I voted for Reagan as opposed to Mondale or LaRouche. I preferred Chuck Baldwin to Bob Barr in 2008 but Baldwin was not on the ballot in Pennsylvania so I held my nose and voted for Barr. I consider myself a fairly libertarian person but I am just so disappointed in the LP ticket. It just doesn’t seem to me that Johnson has learned much from his 2012 campaign and Weld is not even close to being a libertarian. If he was brought in to raise big bucks then when do we begin to see the results? Help me out here.

  7. George Phillies

    BR quotes fairly: “Better for America Chairman John Kingston, a conservative donor with ties to George W. Bush, John McCain John McCain and Mitt Romney, said his group has been in discussions with current and former senators, governors and senior military officials and “absolutely” expects an independent candidate will emerge.”

    They clearly have a mastery of bureaucratics, that being a remarkable way to spell “NO”.

  8. robert capozzi

    br: By NOT advertising earlier during the first two advertising windows – and we have no hint that any advertising will begin during the upcoming third window – the Johnson campaign has left a vacuum in the POTUS race.

    me: Extraordinary assertion. Even if they had the doe to follow your pseudonymous counsel, and that the BRP would work as you claim your unstated experience says it would, we have a major math problem.

    All the states you pick amount to — what — 10% of US population. Even if these ads in these states was flawlessly executed and run enough to capture maybe — what — 20% of the 10%, we’d be looking at an 11% outcome vs 9%.

    Your analytics weak, especially with no supporting data.

  9. Pro-Choice Libertarians

    Celebrate the Supreme Court overturning a bunch of phony “health-related” rules and regulations and laws meant to make womens liberty to control her reproduction and have an abortion so much more difficult. Keeping the government OUT of the abortion issue. See our new PRO-CHOICE AND PROUD music video.“heal

  10. natural born citizen

    This just surfaced on YouTube — Bill Weld’s speech to the 2006 convention of the Libertarian Party of New York.

    He proclaims “taxation is theft!” in this.

  11. natural born citizen

    I didn’t realize Prof Phillies had converted to Islam. Is Phillies the first LP state party chair of the Islamic faith?

  12. William Saturn

    Am I missing something here? The conversation with Dr. Phillies makes no sense. Did someone censor a comment left on this page? Is someone censoring this page like Loretta Lynch censored emergency call transcripts?

  13. Thomas L. Knapp

    Quoth NewFederalist:

    “How many libertarian posters at IPR are considering abandoning the LP ticket in 2016?”

    Not considering it — it’s a done deal. I’ve never voted Republican for president and I have no intention of starting now. That means I probably just won’t be casting a vote for the office at all.

  14. Be Ratioinal


    This has been done many times before, and is proven to work. It’s called leverage. It has been explained to you repeatedly, yet you seem to always forget.

  15. Be Rational

    … our first goal is to get support that will show up in polling targeted areas that will generate additional earned media coverage. We only have to poll higher in a few states – generating a threat to tip the Electoral Vote or possibly win one or more EVs – to generate free nationwide media coverage.

    Johnson and Weld need something to CONTINUE to be interesting to the media. We need the earned media, nationwide, to get over 15% in the polls. So, we need to leverage our limited resources.

    Spreading our money nationwide or over a large regional area will not give us the leverage we need. We will not have enough money to affect the polls in those states or to threaten to change the outcome.

    It would be a total waste to advertise in expensive major markets such as LA, NY, DC, Chi, etc without millions of dollars to spend in each of those cities. Running one or two ads in one of those locations to influence the media would have a negative value

    We can leverage our money by targeting small states where a small amount of money can by a larger number of ad spots and reach a significant portion of the population of the entire state. This is especially valuable in states that have a history of voting for Indpendents and Third Parties – such as ME, NH and VT. Plus, in ME it is possible to win a single electoral vote by winning the northern Congressional District that Perot nearly carried.

    ME has elected Independent governors and has given great support to Greens and Libertarians in past elections. VT has elected third party and independent candidates repeatedly and NH has a strong Libertarian streak. They are also in Weld territory, where Governor Weld is better known and has a good reputation among a larger segment of the population. Since these states are contiguous, with overlapping media markets, they can by targeted efficiently. There is also overlap with upstate NY, which should also be good for us, and overlap with MA, which is also good for the LP and Weld territory, and part of the third group to target.

    NM is Johnson territory, UT has given a strong indication of favoring Johnson and being strongly anti- Trump and ant- Hillary. CO is also good for Johnson and as a state with legalized marijuana gives us an edge.

    Since this is the last chance to affect the conversation, we need to expand to the full 12 initial target states. This means adding: WA, OR. and CA.

    This has all been explained elsewhere. Having waited this long the minimum budget now would be $440,000 for this flight bracketing the updoming major conventions.

    … and yes, they have enough money for this, and they will raise more from donors who are sitting out waiting for action than the cost of the ads.

    Each of these states gives us a chance to affect the outcome and generate free media.

    We need to use leverage to get the most of our limited media dollars. We can get that by starting in these states. We can earn free nationwide coverage, allowing us the reach the expensive, large media centers by making a much smaller investment in more distant locations.

    There is also timing leverage. Money spent early, at appropriate times – like the two earlier advertising windows – and durning the upcoming convention weeks – produces greater leverage for the earned media we need before the polling that will determine the 15% for the debates.

  16. Andy

    Tom, you may want to consider casting a write in vote for None Of The Above for President. That is what I did in 2012, and this is what I am likely to do this year (although I am considering voting for Darrell Castle if he qualifies for the ballot where I am voting, or casting a write in vote for somebody if a good write in option materializes, but writing in NOTA for President is what I am most likely to do).

    I do intend to vote for Libertarian Party candidates who appear on my ballot for other offices.

  17. George Phillies

    “they worship a rock that fell from the sky” This time cut and paste left the quote intact.

    The claim that Islamites worship the Kaaba, as opposed to revering it as a relic, is to be assigned the ranking “unusually stupid for the internet”. Readers will recall that Islamites reject idolatry, the worship of material objects, at such a level that the Hebdo incident arose.

  18. George Phillies

    Be Rational:

    TV Advertising.

    It costs money,. To do it, you have to have the money.

    Is this condition satisfied?

  19. Be Rational


    I have read reports on IPR that the GJ campaign has raised enough money recently to begin targeted TV advertising. I don’t remember the amounts, but it’s enough to get started.

    If the campaign doesn’t take itself seriously enough to advertise, then:
    The media won’t continue to take them seriously.
    The pollsters won’t include them.
    The donors won’t donate.
    The public won’t notice.
    … it’s a downward spiral …

    Life is full of challenges, and if you choose to try it’s risky.


    Pehaps some state LP will try in 2018.

    Maybe Larry Sharpe will run in New York for Governor, and they will advertise in targeted TV markets early, well before the state convention, bracketing – just before after the state convention, and then through the fall up to election day as fundraising allows.

    They should pick one or two small markets (more of course if they have a lot of cash), but not NYC.

    Raise money for TV spots first – and spend it early. Prove you’re serious.

    But, don’t tell the media you’re doing it. No press release on the advertising plan. Let them discover it – it will create more interest in finding out what’s going on.

    Early targeted TV spots will generate a flood of statewide earned media on major local news programs in every market, including NYC.

  20. robert capozzi

    br: This has been done many times before, and is proven to work. It’s called leverage. It has been explained to you repeatedly, yet you seem to always forget.

    me: My memory is not the best, but I only recall vague references to early promotion in unstated races in IIRC ME and VT. Any good analyst would want to hear about specific cases of the BRP working, and contrasting apples-to-apples cases where BRP was NOT used.

    Whether local or state-wide races in low-pop states even applies to a national campaign is not obvious. I’m quite open-minded, but I need to see actual data rather than the word of a pseudonum.

  21. robert capozzi

    br: I don’t remember the amounts, but it’s enough to get started.

    me: Huh?

  22. Thomas Knapp

    Pretty good ad. It doesn’t appeal to me with its appeal to militarism in the middle, but I suspect most people would like it.

    But still the one problem: Real campaign ads are 15, 30 or 60 seconds long. TV stations don’t sell ad increments of 1 minute and 26 seconds. If they’re going to spend money producing ads, why not spend money producing ads that they could conceivably actually show to the American electorate?

  23. robert capozzi

    tk, a good and fair question. I don’t know enough about ad production, but I think that sometimes one sees the same ad sliced and diced with slightly different footage. Perhaps that’s the idea here.

  24. Thomas Knapp


    Fair point — they may be producing longer YouTube videos and gauging reaction to decide which 15, 30 or 60 seconds of each to use in real commercials. Hadn’t thought of that one.

  25. Magnus Dahlstrøm

    If it’s not worship then I don’t know what worship is. Muslims have to stop everything they do (be it crucifying infidels or memorizing the book written by a man who raped a nine year old girl) to pray toward the space rock multiple times a day. As a true believer, Dr. Phillies, perhaps you can enlighten a nonbeliever, such as myself, about the difference between worship and reverence.


  26. Thomas Knapp

    Finally, Johnson gives a good answer on drugs — the answer that some of you insist he gave on the CNN town hall because you wished that was the answer he gave on the CNN town hall. I don’t know if he got a talking to about it from someone he listens to, or if he was just more relaxed sitting in a room with an editorial board versus a large room with a large audience.

    New York Times: How far would you go on decriminalization of drugs?

    Gary Johnson: Well, I have always, since 1999, I’ve advocated legalizing marijuana. I am NOT advocating the legalization of any other drugs, but IF all drugs were legalized tomorrow, the world would be a much better place. I believe that 90% of the drug problem is prohibition-related, not use-related. That’s not to discount the problems with use and abuse, but that should be the focus. I think when we legalize marijuana, and I think it’s happening, and I think California’s gonna vote to legalize it recreationally in November, I think that’s gonna be the real tipping point. But I think that this country is coming, or will come to a quantum leap in understanding drugs and the fact that prohibition really is the killer in all this.

  27. Thomas Knapp

    On the other hand, now he’s against the LP on Social Security and that “social safety net” stuff RC mentioned the other day.

    LP Platform, Plank 2.11: Retirement planning is the responsibility of the individual, not the government. Libertarians would phase out the current government-sponsored Social Security system and transition to a private voluntary system. The proper and most effective source of help for the poor is the voluntary efforts of private groups and individuals. We believe members of society will become even more charitable and civil society will be strengthened as government reduces its activity in this realm.

    New York Times: Do the Libertarians believe in a social safety net?

    Gary Johnson: Yes. Well, this is Bill Weld and myself as the Libertarian nominees, yeah, I always say look, there, having served as governor of New Mexico, there ARE people that are in need and that but for government they wouldn’t receive the care or support that they need. But I would just argue, and this is based on my having been governor of New Mexico, is we’ve gone way with regard to “in need,” uh, and that if new lines of eligibility were drawn — and I believe when it comes to the reform of Medicaid and Medicare that it’s gotta be a devolution to the states, where you would actually have best practices by some states, obviously you’d have really catastrophic failure, too, but one size fits all coming out of the federal government I don’t think is possible. So new lines of eligibility with a fixed amount of money, um, in my heart of hearts I could have made that stick as governor of New Mexico, still delivering what you could label as a safety net.

    New York Times: Do you believe in Social Security?

    Gary Johnson: Yes I do. And, um, but there are some reforms that are needed with regard to Social Security, um, raising the retirement age, I think you can have a very fair means testing, uh, how much money did you pay in, how much money should you, should you get out more money than what you paid in given a certain level of income, I think there can be a very fair means testing. Um, being able to self-direct funds, and in the context of self directing funds, you know, one of the inequities is people, middle class, lower class, this is all they got is Social Security. But when they die, they paid in a certain amount of money, they die, well, it all reverts to the government as opposed to their heirs, a way to arguably build wealth on the lower end of this. Well, that would come with self-direction of funds or that could be a reform also to Social Security.

  28. Thomas Knapp

    Hmm. Right after the above exchange, Bill Weld walks in. The first question for him is “are you raising any money?” and his answer seems to boil down to “no, but maybe we’ll do that one of these days.”

  29. Jim

    That NY Times interview is an hour long. The reason Libertarian Channel cuts it off where they do is because the next topic discussed is healthcare and Weld comes out in favor of the individual mandate. Some of the other stuff that Johnson and Weld have said has irritated me, but I could look past it because they were taking half steps towards reducing government. But I can’t look past support for the individual mandate. If Weld was at the top of the ticket, I wouldn’t vote for them. But I haven’t seen Johnson support it yet, and I haven’t seen Weld mention it during the last month, so maybe Johnson or someone spoke to him about it.

    The interview is from June 1st.

  30. Thomas Knapp

    “The interview is from June 1st.”

    Well, that sucks — it means Johnson has gone downhill rather than uphill on his public statements on the war on drugs.

    As far as the individual mandate is concerned, I’m not at all surprised that Weld is for it. Nixon proposed it in 1973, then Heritage and Gingrich proposed it in 1993 as the alternative to “HillaryCare,” then Weld’s friend Mitt Romney implemented it in Massachusetts. Republicans loved it until Democrats made it happen nationwide.

  31. robert capozzi

    The “problem” isn’t the individual mandate. It’s that the uninsured can get fee-free healthcare, that is, taxpayer paid.

    I toy with the idea of a negative income tax/citizens dividend, but that the first dollars go to health insurance. Or perhaps IF one gets taxpayer-funded health care, the negative income tax payments are reduced to reimburse taxpayers.

  32. Thomas Knapp

    “The ‘problem’ isn’t the individual mandate.”

    There is no “the” problem. There are lots of problems. And yes, writing into law a new tax on every man, woman and child in the US, payable directly to a $4.x trillion industry as corporate welfare instead of even bothering with the disguise of passing it through government’s hands first, is most manifestly one of them.

  33. Thomas Knapp

    Also, we haven’t had health insurance in the US since the 1970s when Nixon got the HMO laws passed. What we have now is prepaid health care. There’s a difference.

  34. Thomas Knapp

    In the NYT interview, Weld advocates the one sensible thing that Carly Fiorina stood for in her GOP campaign, and got raked over the coals by the establishment for: Zero-base budgeting. Good on him.

  35. robert capozzi

    tk, yes, there are lots of problems. To me, undoing the problems peacefully in the direction of liberty is the relevant political question.

  36. George Phillies

    With respect to attention given to a four way polling effort, note the poll aggregator

    Notwithstanding whining from some quarters from the anonymous person shilling for TV advertising, whines we also heard four years ago, the rate at which national polls are covering four candidates is going up, contrary to claims that without advertising the rate should be falling.

    Now, if you wanted to claim that the percentage in the polls appears to have peaked and is now lagging, you might have a point, but readers will be happy to list other things on which the campaign might be doing things differently besides advertising. Some of the items on the list might even be right.

    Astute readers will note that the campaign and the LNC are still endeavoring to negotiate a data sharing arrangement.

  37. George Phillies

    Magnus: Obviously you are unfamiliar with the Roman Catholic and Orthodox Christian faiths, which also reverence objects (icons) and engage in pilgrimages (Lourdes, e.g.), but do not worship icons or holy places. Are you sure you are not our occasional resident antiSemite under a different guise?

  38. George Phillies

    Magnus: So the answer is that you do not know a great deal about worship.

  39. Jim

    robert capozzi “The “problem” isn’t the individual mandate. It’s that the uninsured can get fee-free healthcare, that is, taxpayer paid.”

    The individual mandate is definitely one problem. Another problem is *some* uninsured getting free health care, but that often is just a consequence of other government induced problems. The government does a lot of really dumb things that increase the cost of health care. One example would be that, in every state health care providers are required to obtain a Certificate of Need before expanding services. Not every state has this law, but a federal law kicks in to force it on the states that don’t. The expressly stated purpose of Certificate of Need laws is to limit the supply of health care providers in order to create an artificially high price floor, under the theory that, if there is too much competition, some health care providers will go out of business and create geographic gaps in the availability of health care. Because, you know, that’s what happens with grocery stores. Grocery stores don’t have to obtain a Certificate of Need from the government, which means there is price competition and sometimes they go out of business, and then thousands of people starve to death.

    I haven’t had health insurance since 2006. That’s not to say I’ve gone without health care. I just pay cash. I have not paid the obamacare tax, yet. So I would prefer the individual mandate to go away as soon as possible.

  40. George Phillies

    Johnson fell for the Republican line about people living longer. *Some* people are living longer. The people who are most likely to depend on social security at retirement are *not* living longer, or are living only a bit longer.

  41. Robert Capozzi

    TK, the way I look at things is:

    What is the situation today and how can enhance peace and freedom while not harming the least well off and improving the potential to create wealth. And to maintain a general sense of equity and domestic tranquility.

    Something like a flat tax with a negative income tax, significant exemption, low rate might accomplish that. The tax preferences would be conditioned with proof of health insurance. No insurance, lower/no preferences.

    That would be a big step forward, coupled with spending cuts.

  42. Thomas Knapp


    Your solution is not my cup of tea, but it sounds interesting. It’s pretty far out in terms of what it would take, though. Some thoughts:

    First, a health insurance industry would have to come back into existence in the US so that people could get health insurance. For all intents and purposes, no such industry exists right now. It’s been driven out of business by the state-fueled move to prepaid health care plans (HMOs and PPOs), which have in turn driven health care costs into the stratosphere.

    Secondly, a flat tax with a negative income tax and a significant exemption is not a flat tax. It’s a progressive tax with complicated descriptive language to get away from calling it a progressive tax.

    Thirdly, how do you help the least well-off by demanding that they buy the things you want them to have instead of the things they decide they should have? Is it just barely possible that maybe they know what they need better than you do?

  43. Root's Teeth Are Awesome

    Does the sequence of these IPR articles shift?

    I post something, and then I can’t find the original article. The ordering of the articles seems to have shifted.

  44. Thomas Knapp

    Each month’s “open thread” gets bumped up to the top every so often, and I think when there’s a liveblog of an event it may get bumped up until the event ends, but other than that I don’t think the order changes.

  45. Magnus Dahlstrøm

    I’m not concerned with the Christian Catholic faiths. Their “prophet” is not a bloodthirsty pedophile. They don’t crucify infidels. George Phillies cannot defend Islam so he changes the subject.

  46. robert capozzi

    Tk: it sounds interesting. It’s pretty far out in terms of what it would take, though.

    Me: I’m not sure how far out it might be. I envision something like, in effect, a citizen’s dividend of say $10K for every citizen 18 and over. The first $10K above that would not be taxed. All “income,” depending on how one defines it, would be taxed at a flat rate. One might not become a taxpayer until maybe $40K or so. (I’d view the dividend as justified on semi-Georgist grounds.)

    Tk: Secondly, a flat tax with a negative income tax and a significant exemption is not a flat tax. It’s a progressive tax with complicated descriptive language to get away from calling it a progressive tax.

    Me: Yes, effective tax rates would be “progressive,” certainly. Marginal tax rates would be fixed.

    Tk: Thirdly, how do you help the least well-off by demanding that they buy the things you want them to have instead of the things they decide they should have? Is it just barely possible that maybe they know what they need better than you do?

    Me: It’s a good question. Is the idea that an uninsured person would be denied emergency care at a hospital something that’s sellable? If someone chooses to not be insured, does that mean that they choose to bleed out at the hospital entrance?

    I don’t think it’s sellable. If in theory they can use their citizen’s dividend to buy catastrophic health insurance (or its equivalent), that would be fantastic. Perhaps IF they don’t buy it, the hospital could bill them from future citizen’s dividend, that might work, in broad strokes.

    Or, perhaps, they would have their citizen’s dividend withheld from (maybe $3Kyr) as a kind of medical emergency fund.

    IOW, the citizen’s dividend has conditions, in this case, some contingency for unanticipated health emergencies.

  47. Thomas Knapp

    Well, under your “citizen’s dividend” scheme (which I consider pretty sketchy, but let’s run with it), if you’re going to make it contingent on health insurance, why not just reduce the dividend and put the amount it’s reduced by into:

    1) As you seem to indicate, an emergency health fund, presumably personalized; or

    2) A private catastrophic health plan (every year the state takes bids and goes with the cheapest vendor, provided that vendor doesn’t have a bad record of delivering); or

    3) Fuck it, single-payer a la the UK or Canada (an idea I hate, but it would probably be better than the crazy quilt of badly socialized programs we have now — Medicaid for the poor, Medicare for the old, Tricare for the retired military, state-regulated and state-mandated HMO/PPO with ObamaCare’s individual mandate nonsense for everyone else).

    But as long as we try to pass off pre-paid health care as “insurance,” we’re going to get increasing costs and reduced quality of care — because if you’ve pre-paid for something and get to use all of it you want, you’re going to use more than if you have to pay for what you get, and the providers have to take in more money than they spend if they’re going to stay in business — and then having the state require everyone to buy it is just madness.

  48. robert capozzi

    tk, yes on 1 and 2. In fact, could be that 2 could be part of federal employees plan. If say Blue Cross wins that business, they also have to offer it to citizens, including a catastrophic option.

    I hear you on 3, but I’ve not given up the fight entirely!

  49. robert capozzi

    tk, I could even imagine the citizen’s dividend tax could be folded into Social Security.

  50. Thomas Knapp


    Where does this “dividend” come from? Normally a “dividend” is paid to stockholders by a corporation that makes valuable things or provides valuable goods and services. The state just beats people up and takes their stuff. Are the citizens who receive the “dividend” getting it from having the state beat up foreigners and take their stuff, or is this one of those “dig a hole (beat me up and take my stuff) then fill it in (give me back part of the stuff you took from me)” propositions?

  51. Thomas Knapp

    “Bernie Sanders The BOOTLEG Ron Paul FAKE Revolution”

    Huh. Guess I’m not the only one who noticed the similarity.

    Some of the most poignant criticism comes from those who question Bernie’s “outsider” status — something the Vermont lawmaker claims he’s been more or less able to maintain since first winning a seat in Congress nearly 25 years ago. “He’s just another opportunistic political careerist, sort of a left version of Ron Paul,” insists political writer Thomas L. Knapp. While he clearly started out with some ideological principles … “at some point that ideology took a back seat to establishment pragmatism and re-election necessities, while continuing to provide a great fundraising pitch to people in an unexploited ideological niche — if they don’t look to closely.” — Bernie: A Lifelong Crusade Against Wall Street and Wealth, by Darcy G. Richardson

  52. robert capozzi

    tk, as I mentioned earlier, it’s a semi-Georgist stance, plus an acknowledgment that jurisprudence is imperfect.

    Unlike the Lockean perspective (whoever grabs and develops natural resources owns it), the Georgist perspective is something like: We all own the natural resources. S/he who develops it keeps the fruits of his/her labor and value add, but they pay a rent to natural resource owners. The dividend would roughly approximate rent.

    Even without the semi-Georgist perspective, it’s hard not to notice that property rights requires a system of jurisprudence to uphold property rights and equity. Of course, jurisprudence is quite imperfect, and there are financial and time hurdles to seek redress. The dividend recognizes these hurdles, and roughly compensates everyone for the systemic, institutional imperfections that most suffer at some point or another.

    I continue to of course advocate Harlos Nonarchy Pods for those who want to opt out entirely from civil society.

    I envision the State as the commonwealth’s neutral agent, which is surely imperfect, but the alternative has yet to present a ubiquitous stateless alternative. One might evolve. In the meantime, I point to an ever-smaller state with a checked-and-balanced shrinking portfolio of functions.

  53. George Phillies

    So I found and have now misplaced an extensive critique of free trade arguments, summarized as “it doesn’t matter if the pie is bigger, if you do not get a slice”. The further point is that there are other things in the world besides money, a point incomprehensible to people whose Point of View is ‘everyone has their price’. For example the rationale that free trade means that less well paying jobs are replaced with better paying jobs has the in between step that in between you do not have a job. The negative value of unemployment, especially if you have a mortgage to cover and family and insurance bills to pay, may be larger than any positive value of having a bit more cash in the end. the article found the person who was opposed to free trade because the second cousin who worked in textiles became unemployed. Cheaper towels were nice; an unemployed relative was unspeakably terrible.

  54. robert capozzi

    gp, I’m not unsympathetic to that argument. However, I’m still a free trader. Regulation of labor markets and poor tax policy choke off the replacement of unskilled, semi-skilled and up to mid-range skilled jobs especially, is my sense, although it’s more unseen than seen. Poor regulatory and tax policy is choking new business creation. High non-variable social security taxes set the bar high for hiring the 15-50% set.

  55. George Phillies

    Forthcoming Massachusetts Libertarian Events

    State Committee Monthly Meeting
    Lunch, Noon
    Restaurant Pizzaworks
    Grove Street, Worcester

    Meeting, 1:30PM
    Home of George Phillies
    48 Hancock Hill Drive

    Metro West Liberty Meetup
    Sunday at 1:30 PM – 3 PM
    Horseshoe Pub & Restaurant
    29 South St, Hudson, Massachusetts 01749

    Pioneer Valley Libertarian Association
    Wednesday, July 13 6:30 PM
    Dr. Deegan’s Restaurant
    510 Burnett Rd Chicopee, MA
    Just north from Mass Pike Exit 6

    Route 3 and Lowell Libertarian Group (tentative)
    Wednesday July 20
    Outback Steakhouse,
    28 Reiss Ave, Lowell, MA 01851

    The Boston Area Libertarian Meetup Group Monthly Meetup
    Thursday, July 28, 7:00 PM
    Publick House, 1648 Beacon St, Brookline, MA

  56. Thomas Knapp

    Steve M,


    Johnson starts off on the “I don’t want to legalize anything except marijuana” track, but does put in quite a bit of harm reduction stuff. Not terrible.

    Weld says he’s for US Senator Susan Collins’s “no fly list” victim disarmament proposal. Jesus.

    Both of them say they would pardon Edward Snowden. Cool.

  57. steve m

    I just ran the non-farm job numbers growth in New Mexico under Johnson.

    From December of 1992 till December of 2002 non-farm jobs increased in New Mexico from 610 thousand to 764 thousand an increase of just about 25%. That is what the New Mexico economy under Johnson did. That is why they re-elected him in a landslide even though he was a Republican running in a heavy Democratic State. And since then non-farm jobs is only 830 thousand. Less than 70 thousand when Johnson left office. In the 13 years since Johnson less then half the non-farm jobs have been added in New Mexico. Under Democratic Governor Bill Richardson and Republican Governor Susana Martinaz the New Mexico Economy has done far worse then the 8 years of Governor Gary Johnson.

  58. steve m

    “GARY JOHNSON and William Weld, the Libertarian Party nominees for president and vice president, respectively, brought their fiscally conservative, socially tolerant message to an interview with us Thursday morning. In some areas, their honesty and resistance to poll-tested polish have a certain bracing appeal. Mr. Johnson had no apparent qualms about calling for some politically dicey policies, such as raising the Social Security retirement age to “at least 70” and encouraging government programs that would test heroin quality in order to reduce the number of overdose deaths. He and Mr. Weld declined the opportunity to attack one of their rivals, Hillary Clinton, over her State Department emails, saying that FBI Director James B. Comey was right to recommend against any indictment.”

  59. steve m

    so the Washington Post just wasn’t impressed… are they going to go for Trump? or for Hillary Clinton who spent 10 seconds over her allotted 10 minutes?

    The paper that broke watergate just is well so conformist these days.

  60. Thomas Knapp

    It is — to use a word from the WaPo editorial — “simplistic” to just say that the major papers will always go for the Democrat, but they will in this case. They tend to go for the most (or at least the most obviously) “mainstream” / “serious” / “centrist” candidate, and that candidate this time around is clearly Clinton. She’s the only one who can be counted on to keep all gravy trains running on time so that there are no dislocations or downsizing which might adversely affect the regime stenographers’ pool (the “free press”).

  61. Thomas Knapp


    Watching the National Press Club event right now. So far Johnson’s remarks have pretty much been the established boiler plate except — to put this in the worst light possible, because why not? — Johnson excludes the possibility of hiring Libertarians to fill positions in a Johnson/Weld administration (he says they’ll hire the “best people — Democrats, Republicans, unaffiliated”).

  62. robert capozzi

    One of the triggers for the paleoL set in the Natl Press Club event was when WW likened GJ to Lincoln. He’s noting the physical prowess of both, and he’s trying to brand GJ as Honest Gary.

    I imagine neck veins bulging to maximum in Auburn on hearing that! 😉

  63. robert capozzi

    tk, yes, I noticed that, too. Except I don’t think he EXCLUDED, he just didn’t INCLUDE on the list.

    He later says anyone in the J/W administration that’s an R or D will have an L bent, however.

    I’m thinking if I play my cards right, I might be able to get a speechwriting gig somewhere in the bowels of that highly unlikely administration. Since I no longer challenge the cult of the omnipotent state, I’d fall into the “unaffiliated” box. 😉

  64. robert capozzi


    Since most Ls are not in government, I would think few cult-challengers would be qualified to be in this fantasy Administration. Maybe Sarvis and Sarwark.

    And maybe you and I share that speechwriting desk.

    Coupla wonks at Cato might be cult-challengers, and may be qualified as under Secretaries, perhaps? Other than that, I’m drawing a blank.

    I mean, what, Darryl Perry or Austin Petersen as Press Secretary? Aaron Starr as OMB Director? Starchild as Secretary of State? Ron Paul as UN Ambassador? Andy Jacobs as Secretary of Defense? M Carling as WH Chief of Staff?

    Kinda not able to visualize any of this.

  65. Thomas Knapp


    Gary was never going to get any traction in Auburn regardless, so I don’t see him being worried about that.

    There are all kinds of attorneys and judges to serve as Attorney General, Solicitor General, fill bench appointments, etc. in a Libertarian White House — I’m thinking offhand of John Buttrick, Jim Gray, Rob Latham, Alicia Dearn.

    Richard Winger would make a great FEC commissioner, or administrative (since he’s not a lawyer) head of the Justice Department’s division that deals with elections (including voting rights and ballot access).

    Art Olivier to run Housing and Urban Development? Mary Ruwart to run FDA or Health and Human Services or NIH? Dr. Phillies to head the Office of Science and Technology Policy?

    If I had a role, I kind of fancy myself briefly heading up the federal agency I served for eight years as an appointee in — Selective Service System — to coordinate its expeditious and efficient shutdown (yes, I realize not ALL federal agencies would disappear in a Johnson administration, but surely to God we can agree on THAT one?).

    I don’t think the LP has nearly as thin a bench as one might initially assume. With Admiral Colley and Captain Pearl no longer with us, DoD might be a bit of a stretch.

  66. Robert capozzi

    TK, you misunderstand. I’m concerned for the Auburn erst health. Associating L ism, GJ, and AL might lead to severe cardiac or neurological damage for our revisionist brothers.

  67. Thomas Knapp


    I just don’t worry that much about Auburn. Most of the libertarians seem to have left Mises/LRC (or been shown to the door) over the last few years. The paleocons still try to pass themselves off as “libertarians” when they’re fundraising, but not very many people buy the claim these days.

  68. robert capozzi

    tk, for me, I don’t care to see pain and infirm in anyone, even those are not like-minded. And even if LvMI has shifted their focus, certainly the paleo L crowd seems alive and well to me. Even some of our IPR commentariat are Lincoln-phobes. They might lose it if GJ is positioned as the next Lincoln.

    I don’t want that for them.

    If (somehow) J/W catches fire and win, partly on the strength of this Lincolnesque positioning, I suspect there’d be ideological turmoil making NewsletterGate 1.0 and 2.0 look tame.

  69. Carol Moore

    I hope I can find that video where Weld says he’s gong to support the platform and then quote it and then quote some of his US MILITARY SUPREMACY crap. I’m getting more disgusted all the time. These guys charge too much for me to go see them, so I hope someone who is going to see them will ream them out. Sorry, US borders don’t go to Japan and Bahrain…

    “WELD: The action is intentional, maybe not the consequences. But there is a difference on the tendency to seek regime change. And one thing the Libertarian party — and I think I am onboard with this — there is a presumption of non-intervention where spilling U.S. blood on foreign soil, or sending U.S. boots into other countries is involved. That’s not to say we don’t need an absolutely invincible defense. That’s not to say that we don’t need to maintain air and naval supremacy and let the whole world know it. I travel a great deal around the world for business half of the last ten years, and everybody in the world is watching the U.S. and its military like a hawk. All the Arabs in the Middle East are terrified that the Fifth Fleet is going to steam out of Bahrain’s harbor and go back and sit at anchor in the Gulf of Mexico. And everybody in the Pacific, if the Pacific Fleet moves one carrier group ten feet, the dust is raised in China, Japan and every other country in the area. I think that’s part of the bedrock responsibility of government, even under the libertarian credo, which is to protect people from being injured, to protect citizens from being injured, and that’s where the invincible defense comes in. “

  70. Andy

    Getting advice from CATO people is not necessarily a good thing. While CATO does some good, they are also filled with libertarian lites and beltway cosmotarian lap dog statists.

    I recall hearing that somebody from CATO came out in support of the TPP.

  71. Magnus Dahlstrøm

    So when are you going to make that phone call Andy? I’m pretty sure that if you talk to me on the phone I can convince you that I am not part of any conspiracy.

  72. NewFederalist

    I am really beginning to understand why paulie has stopped posting here and Chuck Moulton has cut way back and many others. This place has really stopped being any fun. Jill rarely posts anymore. Caryn ditto. At this rate this site is going to become fairly abandoned quite soon. Good luck to you all.

  73. Andy

    NewFederalist, that is one of the motivations of the trolls, to make the place no fun in order to stifle discussion about alternative political ideas.

  74. Magnus Dahlstrøm

    You’re lying again unless you have some inside information. Andy, call me. Let’s resolve this matter.

  75. Andy

    I prefer in person. Show up in person somewhere that you can be recorded on video.

  76. Magnus Dahlstrøm

    I will. We can work out the details over the phone. Call me. You got the number?

  77. Andy

    No, show up at an LP meeting an announce which one you are going to be at so we can get video of you there. No need for phone calls. Talk is cheap. Show up in person.

  78. Magnus Dahlstrøm

    You can record the phone conversation. I’m in rural SD, very few LP headquarters around here.

  79. Magnus Dahlstrøm

    I’m not Marlon Areola. But if I was, I’d be down. I love that picture of Andy and Kane.

  80. Andy

    “Magnus” offers to drive from South Dakota to Chicago, yet he/she cannot drive to a Libertarian Party meeting in South Dakota where he/she lives. I call bullshit.

    Tom, this weird trolling and surveillance stuff has been going on here at IPR for a long time. It is most definitely not me. Ask Paul about it if you do not believe me. Jill Pyeatt knows about a lot of the weird stuff that has happened, so you can ask her about it as well.

  81. Magnus Dahlstrøm

    I am only going to make one trip. It’s either Chicago or somewhere else. We need to coordinate and I don’t know how we do that without talking on the phone.

  82. Magnus Dahlstrøm

    I really think if I talk to you on the phone you would understand and none of this would be necessary. I know a little about the surveillance and how our connects to the Plas place blog but you have to call me.

  83. Be Rational

    Why no support from Crane’s Purple PAC nor the Kochs for the GJ/WW ticket?

    … and another reason why the Johnson campaign needed to establish an early advertising beachhead in the 12 targeted states that I listed …


    Eric O’Keefe and a gang of Wisconsinites … called Delegates Unbound … are plotting to dump Trump from the convention floor …

    How? IF at least 306 of the 1,542 delegates bound to Trump “abstain” on the first ballot, Trump will be denied the 1,237-delegate votes required to be nominated.

    The convention will then become contested.

    This tactic doesn’t require any rule changes and allows delegates to follow their consciences without disobeying any rules.

  84. langa

    Even some of our IPR commentariat are Lincoln-phobes.

    So, in your mind, someone who disapproves of Lincoln’s actions is a “Lincoln-phobe”? Would you characterize someone who disapproves of Hitler’s actions as a “Hitler-phobe”?

    In reality (as opposed to the nihilistic sandbox that is the Capozzian mind), a person’s views of the so-called “Great Emancipator” are an excellent indicator of whether that person is a libertarian. In fact, if I had to ask a single question and use the answer to determine how libertarian someone is, I might very well ask them where they would rank “Honest Abe” on the all-time list of U.S. Presidents. If their answer were anywhere but the bottom ten, then I could be fairly sure that they are either extremely ignorant about Lincoln’s record, or else they don’t have a libertarian bone in their body. On the other hand, if they did rank him in the bottom ten (and especially if they ranked him in the bottom three, as I would), then they are probably (but not definitely) a pretty libertarian person.

  85. Thomas L. Knapp

    “On the other hand, if they did rank him in the bottom ten (and especially if they ranked him in the bottom three, as I would), then they are probably (but not definitely) a pretty libertarian person.”

    My guess would be that 90% of people who would rank Lincoln in the bottom three would be people who do so because they wish the slaves had never been freed and are almost certainly not even remotely libertarian persons. Most people simply don’t know about Lincoln’s suppressions of civil liberties in the north, etc. and have been led to believe the war was largely about slavery on both sides.

    I really don’t know where I’d rank Lincoln. Certainly not as low as Wilson or either of the Roosevelts.

  86. langa

    My guess would be that 90% of people who would rank Lincoln in the bottom three would be people who do so because they wish the slaves had never been freed and are almost certainly not even remotely libertarian persons.

    I don’t think there are very many people who would rank Lincoln in the bottom three for that reason, because I don’t think there are very many people at all who look back longingly at the days of slavery.

    Sure, there are plenty of mildly bigoted people who would be upset if, for example, their child decided to marry a black person. But there is a huge difference between that kind of prejudice, and the seething hatred that would cause someone to long for a return to slavery.

    I really don’t know where I’d rank Lincoln. Certainly not as low as Wilson or either of the Roosevelts.

    I’m not sure about the exact order, but I’d definitely have Lincoln, Wilson and FDR as the bottom three, if for no other reason than just the sheer volume of blood on their hands.

  87. Jim

    Lincoln, Wilson, and FDR in the bottom three. LBJ, Nixon, and Truman right above that. Teddy Roosevelt wasn’t great, but he doesn’t compare with those six.

  88. Thomas L. Knapp

    “I don’t think there are very many people who would rank Lincoln in the bottom three for that reason, because I don’t think there are very many people at all who look back longingly at the days of slavery.”

    I don’t think there are very many people who rank Lincoln in the bottom three for that reason, either, because I don’t think there would be many people who would rank Lincoln in the bottom three, period. But I expect most of them who DID rank him in the bottom three would do so for reasons of race animus.

    “Lincoln, Wilson, and FDR in the bottom three. LBJ, Nixon, and Truman right above that. Teddy Roosevelt wasn’t great, but he doesn’t compare with those six.”

    Depends on your criteria. Looking at your list, I suspect yours has to do with how many people got killed in a president’s wars.

  89. robert capozzi

    L: If their answer were anywhere but the bottom ten, then I could be fairly sure that they are either extremely ignorant about Lincoln’s record, or else they don’t have a libertarian bone in their body.

    me: Similar to TK, I don’t know where I’d rank Lincoln, or any other prez for that matter. Mostly because ranking requires (for me) a calibration of the degree of difficulties faced during his term. I would be inclined to say that AL had among the most difficult challenge with the Confederate Elite Insurrection beginning just after his election.

    With the Confederate Elites claiming an extra-constitutional power to secede in order to maintain slavery…I’d say that was a challenging setup. Wouldn’t you?

    Certainly, I’d be inclined to put Wilson and FDR near the bottom of any ranking.

    The truth is that at the start of Lincoln’s administration, slavery was legal and protected, and at the end it was illegal and all-but-abolished. That was a great accomplishment. How he got there was butt ugly.

    How that ranks, however, is a tough one.

  90. Be Rational

    Worst Presidents ever:


    Bush II

    Lincoln was largely carried along by events and shouldn’t be on the bottom 10 list.

  91. Be Rational

    Thomas Knapp
    July 10, 2016 at 10:21

    “Interesting idea! One guy I know has suggested that that’s a possible tactic before. Actually, twice.”


    Perhaps Eric O’Keefe is one of your readers.

  92. William Saturn

    I wouldn’t put Hoover or Nixon near the bottom. I would put Grant at the bottom for the corruption of his administration, enforcing repressive “Reconstruction” on the South, and his inability to respond to the Panic of 1873.

  93. Jim

    Thomas L. Knapp “Depends on your criteria. Looking at your list, I suspect yours has to do with how many people got killed in a president’s wars.”

    Wars are a big part of it, but they are the worst on civil liberties and economic freedom, too.

  94. steve m

    Is Real Clear Politics Poll of Polls biased against Johnson.

    There are 2 new polls that show Johnson at 12% and 11% respectively that are not being included even though Real Clear Politics have used these Polls in the recent past.

    The Morning Consult Poll has Johnson at 12% June 30 to July 4

    Proof of Morning Consult Polls being included back in 2015.

    Pew Research has a new poll out with Johnson at 11%.

    Real Clear Politics has dropped the 6/15 – 6/26 PEW data also at 11% but not included the new data also at 11%.

    Including these two data sets in the Real Clear Politics 3 way pol of polls and Johnson would be at 8.2%

  95. Bondurant

    Judge Jim Gray is currently a guest on Coast to Coast AM. They’re about to go to open lines where callers can ask questions. So far there was general discussion of the current presidential race and libertarian ideas. The Judge was far from a flawless LP candidate but after listening to this interview I am left wishing he was the VP candidate again.

  96. Be Rational

    “Why I’m voting for Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson for president” – Jesse Ventura

    “I like everything Gary Johnson has said so far. He’s fiscally conservative and socially liberal – something neither Democrats nor Republicans can offer”

    “Ron Paul mentioned that he’s probably going to vote Libertarian this year. He should. After all, he was their presidential nominee back in 1988. Come November, I will join him, voting for Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson again, just like I did in 2012.”

  97. robert capozzi

    I guess I give this an A-. I definitely like the idea…to be the healer, not the stone thrower.

    Using Bobby Kennedy’s speech gives me an ambivalent feeling. It feels a bit cheap and somewhat weak. Why not Gary? Or maybe just a snip of Bobby, then GJ jumping in for the voiceover.

    Curious what others think….

  98. Jim

    CBS poll has Johnson at 12%.

    Johnson is averaging 10.8% in the last five 3-way polls. His average of all 21 3-way polls is 9.9%

    12% CBS/NY Times 7/8 – 7/12
    12% Morning Consult 7/8 – 7/10
    9% Rasmussen 7/5
    11% Morning Consult 6/30 – 7/4
    10% Fox News 6/26 – 6/28

    Johnson is averaging 8.2% in the last five 4-way polls. His average of all 27 4-way polls is 7.4%.

    5% The Economist/Yougov 7/9 – 7/11
    6% Associated Press/GFK 7/7 – 7/11
    11% NBC News/Survey Monkey 7/4 – 7/10
    9% Raba Research 7/7 – 7/9
    10% McClatchy/Marist 7/5 – 7/9

    Stein is averaging 3.4% in the last five 4-way polls. Her average of all 27 4-way polls is 3.9%.

    2% The Economist/Yougov 7/9 – 7/11
    2% Associated Press/GFK 7/7 – 7/11
    6% NBC News/Survey Monkey 7/4 – 7/10
    2% Raba Research 7/7 – 7/9
    5% McClatchy/Marist 7/5 – 7/9

  99. George Phillies

    Three-way polls are hot air signifying nothing. The four-way polls show this.

    Associated Press-GfK 7/7 – 7/11 837 RV — 40 36 6 2 Clinton +4
    Economist/YouGov 7/9 – 7/11 932 RV 4.5 40 37 5 2 Clinton +3
    McClatchy/Marist 7/5 – 7/9 1053 RV 3.0 40 35 10 5 Clinton +5
    Reuters/Ipsos 7/2 – 7/6 1345 RV 2.8 42 33 6 4 Clinton +9
    USA Today/Suffolk 6/26 – 6/29 1000 LV 3.0 39 35 8 3 Clinton +4
    PPP (D) 6/27 – 6/28 947 RV 3.2 45 41 5 2 Clinton +4
    IBD/TIPP 6/24 – 6/29 837 RV 3.5 37 36 9 5 Clinton +1
    Quinnipiac 6/21 – 6/27 1610 RV 2.4 39 37 8 4 Clinton +2

    The three-way-poll shows Stein voters voting for the only available third-party candidate.

  100. robert capozzi

    gp, if GJ gets in the debates, I suspect the Greens collapse to below 0.5%. If GJ doesn’t get to 15%, you may be correct.

  101. robert capozzi

    tk, no, I really don’t see that, though anything’s possible. If you’re suggesting that GJ would be SO bad in the debates that he’d lose his 15+% support, this I can envision. He might gaffe away that support.

    It might go back to the R or Ds, or people inclined L might just stay home in disgust.

    Darcy suggested a week or 2 ago that GJ is Chance Gardener from BEING THERE. In a sense, I see it. He’s getting better on TV, and some may find his humility a breath of fresh air.

  102. Thomas Knapp


    I don’t think there’s much question that a debate appearance would drop Johnson’s numbers.

    That would be true even if he was a pretty good candidate, for the simple reason that RIGHT NOW he’s got a lot of votes loosely in hand that just boil down to “never heard of him, but he’s not Trump and he’s not Clinton so I guess he’ll do.”

    To the extent that those voters are not libertarians (which describes most of them), and that his positions ARE libertarian (OK, OK, that’s a stretch, but I’m going to stipulate), and that the “never heard of him” voters pay attention, he has a problem: When he has to speak/defend his positions in detail and in large-scale public view, he’s probably going to lose two or three votes for every vote he gains.

    That’s leaving aside the fact that he’s really just awful in debate. Even on simple questions that he’s been asked a million times (what’s a libertarian? Why legalize marijuana? Do you support gun control?), he looks off into the distance, then stammers his way wanderingly through his answer in a manner that half says “wow, I never really thought about it before” and half says “wow, I am REALLY baked.” He’ll probably run out the clock on most questions without ever actually saying anything, and then Trump and Clinton will casually (and metaphorically) slap him around the room, pants him, give him a bare-bottom spanking, drag him down the hall for a swirly, and dismiss him, all in about ten seconds and without moving from their podiums or raising their voices.

    Right now, the numbers look like he MIGHT match his 2012 performance, if everything goes just right (he’s doing about half again as well as Badnarik was doing a month later in the 2004 cycle, and there’s a chance he’ll be able to hold on to a bit more of it). A debate appearance would likely roach that possibility.

  103. robert capozzi

    gj does have a tendency to not answer questions, and it’s kinda obvious.

    Hopefully, WW can skool him. WW I’ve noticed just says yes or no, and then answers the question he wants to answer. It’s a pretty simple technique to learn.

    Don’t know about you, but I am completely surprised that DJT is the R nominee. In the early primary stage, I found him embarrassingly inarticulate, disjointed, and repetitive. My view is that if HE can get the nomination, anything is possible, even the highly improbable.

    I suspect in a 3 way debate, DJT and HRC will mostly attack each other. They will mostly ignore GJ, would be my guess.

    “Chance Gardener” might do very well by way of contrast.

  104. Thomas Knapp

    “Don’t know about you, but I am completely surprised that DJT is the R nominee.”

    I was surprised until it became clear that he was GOING to be. Maybe, say, Florida. Before about that time I went from “not a chance” to “surely to God they’ll stop him.”

    “I suspect in a 3 way debate, DJT and HRC will mostly attack each other. They will mostly ignore GJ, would be my guess.”

    My guess is that one or the other, or possibly both, will spend a minimal amount of time tearing him a new asshole. THEN they’ll ignore him while he sits there and bleeds from it.

    That’s a function not just of his weakness as a debater, but of the weakness of his record. His major party opponents aren’t just talented amateurs like his opponents for the nomination were. They have large, well-funded campaigns. Assigning a staffer or two to opposition research and then incorporating that into debate prep won’t be a problem for them. So:

    Johnson: We need to cut spending and reduce debt. They’re just killing us.

    Trump or Clinton: As governor of New Mexico, you increased both state spending and state debt more and faster than either have increased at the federal level during president Obama’s term. And your last campaign proved that you don’t have the slightest idea how to balance a checkbook. Who the fuck are you and what makes you think you’re qualified to lecture us about those issues with a record like that?


  105. Robert Capozzi

    TK, are you kidding about campaign debt? Sounds like a rat’s-assistance issue to me during a debate.

    He has strong counter-stats for his tenure as guy.

    They may well take a dimissive swat at GJ, but not those, is my sense.

  106. Thomas Knapp

    “are you kidding about campaign debt? Sounds like a rat’s-assistance issue to me during a debate”

    Well, it depends on whether or not he gets enough traction to make them take him seriously at all. If they don’t, they don’t. If they do, he does have a record, and right now he’s dancing on the ledge with respect to that record. From this week’s GQ interview:

    I think most people can balance a checkbook and understand that there’s fiscal responsibility that goes along with life, and that should also apply to government.

    If he’s going to run on that kind of thing, and if he does well enough to be taken seriously, he’s going to end up owning statements like that when someone points out that while “most people” may be able to balance a checkbook, he’s proven both as a governor and as a political candidate that he either can’t or won’t.

    The LP nomination is flag football with some guys from the office for weekend fun while grilling out and having a few brewskies. A general election campaign that includes participation in debate with candidates from the major parties is the NFL post-season. You can pull a hamstring doing either of those things (and he has). But in the NFL post-season you can also count on 11 300-pound monsters rolling right over your ass every time the ball gets snapped. Wear a cup.

  107. Jim

    George Phillies “Three-way polls are hot air signifying nothing…. The three-way-poll shows Stein voters voting for the only available third-party candidate.”

    That is not correct for a couple of reasons.

    1. There are other options in the polls along the lines of “someone else”, “would not vote”, and “no answer”. The sums of the candidates in the 4-way polls only add up to around 84% – 90%, which is about the same as the sums of the candidates in the 3-way polls. In the 3-way polls, Johnson picks up around 2.5% of the 4% Stein usually gets in the 4-way polls, but Stein voters do have the option of choosing “someone else.” Stein won’t be on the ballot in every state come election day. In the states where she is not on the ballot, they may vote the same way as they are polling.

    2. The media *wants* a 3 person debate. So if they see Johnson is close in 3 way polls, but not in 4 way polls, they will drop Stein.

    The polling used for the 2012 debates came from ABC News/The Washington Post, NBC News/The Wall Street Journal, CBS News/The New York Times, Fox News and Gallup.

    Let’s see what they’re doing so far:

    ABC News/Washington Post
    One 4-way poll (6/23 7%) Previous poll was a 2-way from 5/19

    NBC News/Wall Street Journal
    One 4-way poll (6/23 10%) Previous poll was a 2-way from 5/19

    CBS News/New York Times
    One 3-way poll (7/12 12%) Previous poll was a 2-way from 5/17

    Fox News
    Three 3-way polls (6/28 10%, 6/8 12%, 5/17 10%)

    No 2-way, 3-way, or 4-way polls?

  108. Jim

    Thomas Knapp “your last campaign proved that you don’t have the slightest idea how to balance a checkbook. Who the fuck are you and what makes you think you’re qualified to lecture us about those issues with a record like that?”

    Which one is going to bring up Johnson’s 2012 campaign debt? Trump has filed bankruptcy four times and said he would deliberately run up the national debt just so he could negotiate a “better deal”. Hillary didn’t pay off her 2008 campaign debt until 2013 and if she pushes too hard on other people’s finances, she risks introducing attacks on her cattle futures miracle or shady Clinton Foundation dealings.

  109. Thomas Knapp


    Neither of THEM are lecturing anyone about balancing checkbooks. Johnson is.

    He’s the one throwing stones vis a vis spending and debt.

    If he does that in a debate with Clinton and Trump, either one of them would be well-positioned to bring up his glass house, or to mention pots calling kettles black.

    It would be one thing if he had some kind of conversion story where he realized that constantly increasing government spending and government debt were bad things and decided he shouldn’t be doing that any more. Instead, one of his big talking points is how he was increase spending (“new schools, new hospitals, new highways!”) in New Mexico without raising taxes.

    Of course there are other issues where he’s not so badly positioned. If same-sex marriage comes up he could really savage Clinton especially. She suddenly decided she was for marriage equality in 2013 when it became obvious that it was going to happen whether or not she reversed her position after decades of “one man one woman” mouthing off, so she decided to run like hell for the front of the parade. And Trump, as he does on most issues, tends toward complete incoherence. Johnson could point out that he was right on that one before being right was cool. But since he’s Johnson, he’s just as likely to go all Rodney Dangerfield and blow it with some kind of wandering rant about a Jewish baker climbing Mount Everest while mentally ill and trying to buy a gun.

  110. Jim

    Thomas Knapp – they really can’t bring up Johnson’s 2012 campaign debt without making themselves look a lot worse.

    I haven’t looked this up, but I’m curious if anyone knows if the increased revenue/spending during Johnson’s time as Governor was mostly the result of increased federal funds being allocated to the state and federal demands to increase spending?

  111. George Phillies

    They can readily bring up his campaign debt. More important their surrogates and superpacs can. Incidentally “Trump has filed bankruptcy four times” is at last report I saw incorrect. For of his real estate projects have filed for bankruptcy, but that is not the same thing as Trump going broke.

  112. Jim

    How is that different from saying ‘Gary Johnson didn’t have any debt. His campaign did.’

  113. langa

    Important article to read

    Yeah, that’s what he’s saying now, at the end of Obama’s 2nd term. Of course, at the end of Bush’s 2nd term, he was singing exactly the opposite tune:

    “Clearly, in the age of Bush, conservatism now constitutes as great or even greater threat to American liberty than the left and left-liberalism. It is long past time for every right-thinking American to reject the term conservative as a self-description.

    I for one no longer believe that Bush has betrayed conservatives. In fact, he has fulfilled conservatism, by completing the redefinition of the term that began many decades ago with Bill Buckley and National Review. Think of it realistically. What does conservatism today stand for? It stands for war. It stands for power. It stands for spying, jailing without trial, torture, counterfeiting without limit, and lying from morning to night.

    There comes a time in the life of every believer in freedom when he must declare, without any hesitation, to have no attachment to the idea of conservatism.”

    Rockwell, like his friend and mentor Rothbard, has a knack for keeping his positions consistent over time, but subtly shifting his rhetoric to achieve whatever spin he perceives to be appropriate for the current political climate.

  114. George Phillies

    LNC Receipts for June of election year, by year
    $239,883 — 2016
    $141,530 — 2012
    $177,899 — 2008
    $207,905 — 2004
    $363,661 — 2000
    $145,075 — 1996

    It is noteworthy that the LNC has turned around a long-standing trend that started in 2000, namely receipts progressively falling.

  115. George Phillies

    Good bit of white-wing cherry picking.

    See the tables. For black men born as recently as 1995 “life expectancy at birth”, the life expectancy was barely 65. Assuming those numbers are any good, for people going on Social Security up through 2060, when those people hit 65, for some of us life expectancy has not increased.

    Raising the Social Security retirement age after 2060 is another question.

    If you fold in poverty, the results are more dramatic.

    White wing think tanks will of course ignore this.

    As an additional datum, for poor white women for the last decade the average age at death has been *falling*, primarily in the southern Republican belt.

  116. Jim

    Insinuating I’m a racist, now? Fuck yourself.

    Life expectancy at birth is an irrelevant statistic for your argument that raising the SS retirement age will cause persons of color to pay more money to white people. You don’t begin paying in to SS at birth.

    And poor people don’t pay in as much as rich people.

  117. Thomas Knapp

    Social Security is a welfare scheme through which some demographics (most notably poor black males) are forced to subsidize the retirements of others (most notably upper middle class white females).

  118. robert capozzi

    tk: [GJ]’s the one throwing stones vis a vis spending and debt.

    me: Discerning voters will see the difference between government fiscal policy and inside-baseball for campaigns.

  119. Thomas Knapp

    “Discerning voters will see the difference between government fiscal policy and inside-baseball for campaigns.”

    Stipulating to your implicit claim that stiffing creditors for nearly $2 million is “inside-baseball for campaigns” even though that claim is rather facially implausible, maybe.

    But what about the other 120 million or so voters?

  120. George Phillies

    At Libertarian Conventions, Votes Are Counted

    July 20, 2016. Worcester, Massachusetts. Libertarian State Chair George Phillies today assured the people of Massachusetts that Libertarian political conventions count votes honestly.

    “Six weeks ago,” Phillies said, “our Libertarian National Convention chose our Presidential candidate. When I said ‘Massachusetts, where the American Revolution began at the battles of Concord, Lexington, and Worcester, proudly casts its votes as follows: three votes for John McAfee and eight votes for Gary Johnson’ I could be absolutely positive. Our National Chair actually counted those votes. He didn’t make up numbers to please his party bosses.”

    “Yesterday, television viewers saw Republicans do the opposite,” Phillies continued. “The Republican convention chair ignored the floor. He made up whatever votes he wanted, to get the result decreed by the Republican establishment. Can you imagine Republicans running America that way? That would be an America where the supreme leader ignored the votes of the people, and announced whatever votes he wanted. That would be a third world dictatorship, not the United States.”


    For more information on this release, please contact our State Chair,
    George Phillies
    508 754 1859

    For more information on all Libertarian political campaigns

  121. Thomas L. Knapp

    I suggested to Glenn Jacobs, aka Kane, that he should seek the Libertarian Party’s nomination in 2012. He replied that he believes he’s ineligible (he was born outside the US to a US military family).

  122. steve m

    I of course await Dr George Phillies analysis of the spending but couldn’t help notice a June 22nd $20,000 transfer to the LNC for ballot access.

  123. George Phillies

    Interesting lesson on the virtue of honesty for political operatives, which applies to third parties (and if you are running against a Democrat, there may be interesting attacks on the Democratic Party here):

    The level of corruption is doubtless emphasized by Red State.

    Readers who do not think that this issue matters for third parties should go to, find Let Freedom Ring!, and read our 2000-2003 coverage of the Libertarian National Committee.

  124. Jim

    It looks like Johnson pulled in almost half of his June fundraising haul in the last five days between the $212,000 Money Comet and the $100,000 Drew Carey fundraiser.

    Couple of good web sites. Each plays maybe 30 minutes of videos.

    This one starts out playing anti-Hillary videos which eventually turn into pro-Johnson videos.

    This one starts out playing anti-Trump videos which eventually turn into pro-Johnson videos.

    These are much shorter, text only websites that are less good because they don’t become pro-Johnson. Still might be useful.

  125. Deran

    OK, from what I hear, and now saw it mentioned on BAN, that the WCP was initiated by a Trotskyite sectlette called Spark. But that still does explain to me how a tiny Trot sect generated 50,000 signatures.

  126. Jim

    A poll Gary Johnson is winnng:

    38.5% Gary Johnson (70,321)
    19.2% Donald Trump (35,067)
    12.5% Jill Stein (22,794)
    10.9% Hillary Clinton (19,862)
    –Write In Candidates–
    4.6% Billy Talty (8,353) ??
    3.2% Adolf Hitler (5,875)
    3.2% Amiri King (5,839) Comedian
    2.2% Bernie Sanders (3,930)
    2.1% Chris Keniston (3,906) Veterans Party of America
    -various others with fewer than 1,000-
    0.2% Ted Cruz (342)
    0.1% Darrel Castle (213)
    0.0% Mitt Romney (53)
    0.0% Rand Paul (48)
    0.0% Vermin Supreme (46)
    0.0% John Kasich (43)
    0.0% Marco Rubio (26)

  127. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    Andy, as far as your link to the “13 Important Elements to Look for In a False Flag”, that was written by my friend Bernie Suarez. He’s organized a new WeAreChange group in Los Angeles that I’ve been going to. The group also has a man who makes videos that you might enjoy. His You Tube channel is called “HowISee theWorld”.

    We’re now the official WeAreChange Los Angeles group. I really enjoy this group of highly educated and motivated people, and am proud to be included.

  128. langa

    I have repeatedly tried to post a comment that never shows up. I have been able to post other comments (even on the same thread), but this one comment keeps disappearing. It must be getting trapped in the stupid IPR spam filter. If someone could fish it out, I would appreciate it.

  129. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    Did someone already pull out your comment, Langa? Nothing comes up under your name in either the ‘spam’ or ‘trash’ folders.

  130. Krzysztof Lesiak

    I was going to ask Nicholas Hensley, the Reform Party secretary, if would be interested in live blogging, but I never got around to it, and their presidential nomination is happening today,

    Facebook updates of the Reform National Committee:

    July 25th:

    What the American people saw this year was the Republicans rigging their convention, and the Democrats rigging their primary.

    July 26th:

    The Reform Party nomination process that is pitching Rocky De La Fuente, Lynn Kahn and Darcy Richardson against each other is the most interesting Reform Party primary of all time. It is also a positive for the party as we may not win this next election, but it will put the party in a better position for the future.


    Dr. Bill C. Merrell has been elected Chairman for the 2017 to 2021 term. Leigh Pollet was reelected as treasurer for a full four year term.

  131. langa

    Did someone already pull out your comment, Langa? Nothing comes up under your name in either the ‘spam’ or ‘trash’ folders.

    No. It’s odd, because all my other comments are going through fine. That’s why I thought it must have been something specific to that comment. Maybe it’s something about that thread. I’m going to try posting the problematic comment on this thread.

  132. langa

    Hmm, that didn’t work, either. How strange.

    Oh well, it wasn’t that important of a comment to begin with. I just find it baffling that all my other comments work fine, but that one keeps getting hung up.

  133. langa

    OK, now I’m starting to get upset. This is the second time in as many days that I have repeatedly tried to post a comment, only to have it keep getting rejected. The nature of the comments leads me to believe this is intentional. If someone at IPR doesn’t want me to post here, have the guts to say it, and explain why, instead of this passive-aggressive sabotage bullshit.

  134. Thane Eichenauer

    Let me suggest that problems with comments are probably not personal to you. After all your comment complaining about your rejected comment posted fine didn’t it? I’ve had comments not show up. I believe it is that no commenting system is problem free. Thank you for your past thoughtful comments. Have a good day.

  135. Thomas L. Knapp


    I just logged in and checked comments.

    Nothing in “pending” from you.

    Nothing in “spam” for you.

    Nothing in “trash” for you, and the trash hasn’t been emptied for some time.

    It IS possible that someone is doing this to you and then doing a manual “permanent delete” from the trash bin on your comments and your comments alone to cover his or her tracks … but I doubt it. I’m unaware of anyone at IPR who has a problem with you, especially one rising to the level of following all threads or constantly checking the back end (including at what, 2 or 3 in the morning?) to intercept your comments and 86 them.

  136. langa

    I agree that it doesn’t make much sense to think that someone is intentionally intercepting them. But it also makes no sense that all my other comments are going through just fine, but these 2 comments are not. I have tried posting each of them at least 4 or 5 times, and each time, after I hit the “Post Comment” button, the page won’t load. Eventually, I get the “connection was reset” page. This never happens with any of my other comments. So, if it’s not some sort of chicanery, then I’m stumped.

  137. Thomas L. Knapp


    Your description of what is happening makes even less sense as an intentional attack on you. The comment is hanging up on input, not being deleted later. It is obviously also not hanging up because it’s you in particular, since your other comments get through. I can think of two plausible explanations:

    1) It’s a coincidence that the two comments this happened to are similar in content (at least my understanding of what you are saying is that they are), and it’s just some kind of site glitch or problem in your browser or on your machine.

    2) There’s something in the content that’s tripping a filter of some type. I don’t know if we have those, or if so whether or not I have access to them, but if you want to email me the text of one or both comments at kubby dot communications @ gmail dot com, I’ll investigate and/or ask around among other IPR editors (even if one of them is stalking you, I know that not all of us are and I doubt that I’m the ONLY one left out).

  138. langa

    TK, thanks for the offer, but there’s no need to go to a lot of trouble for a couple of comments that weren’t that important. But if this keeps happening, then I might have to take you up on your offer to investigate.

    For the record, I don’t think it’s a text filter, since the comments weren’t all that similar. (That might sound like it contradicts what I said earlier about the “nature” of the comments, but I just meant that if someone disliked one of the comments enough to delete it, they probably wouldn’t like the other one much, either.)

  139. George Phillies

    Langa: Send someone else the comment and where you want it posted. Have them post for you. If there is a text filter, it will block them, too.

  140. Thomas L. Knapp


    Presumably it was “Moses Austwin” who posted a comment with the false claim that I had “improved” it.

    IIRC, impersonating someone else is a banning offense. Can we flush that turd, please?

  141. Jim

    Johnson campaign says it raised $2.9 million in the first half of August.

    (Not posted? Story is on CNN titled “Where is Gary Johnson?”)

    This comes after the campaign’s earlier statement that they raised $1 million over the last two weeks of July, when they had the Money Comet and Drew Carey fundraiser (there is a slight overlap with the first two days of August when that statement was issued.) A better estimate will be available in a few days, but assuming they raised around $250,000 in the first half of July, that would mean the campaign has raised roughly $5.5 million year to date.

  142. Thomas Knapp

    “Johnson campaign says it raised $2.9 million in the first half of August.”

    I was about to respond that we won’t know how much money the campaign actually raises in August until the September 20th FEC report.

    Then I remembered that we won’t know then, either. We’ve caught the Johnson campaign lying on its FEC reports before, and in at least one close falsely reporting one of its numbers off by nearly a million bucks. So it may be a couple of years before we know whether the campaign raised $2.9 million in the first half of August or whether the campaign took in $5.79 and a stick of gum in the first half of August.

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